Tuesday, December 31, 2013

King Zeniff's Reign

As Limhi explained to Ammon, when Zeniff brought his band of Nephites to repossess their ancient homeland, he wanted to come up with a treaty between them and the Lamanites.  The Lamanite king was more than willing, but that was because he was crafty.  He knew Nephites had a tendency to be really hard workers, and if he played his cards right, he could get a lot of benefit from letting them stay.  He told them they could have the land of Lehi-Nephi, and the land of Shilom.  They lived there in peace for many years, until King Laman began to worry about just how strong the people were becoming.  He sent his armies to attack them while they were working, and they slaughtered the Nephites who were in the fields.  With the help of God Zeniff was able to protect his people, but at a great cost.  From then on Zeniff told his people to be ready for war.  They fought at least once more with the Lamanites before Zeniff died, but because he was a righteous king, his people were blessed with victory.
Unfortunately, the son who would succeed him had a very different way of ruling.

Happy New Year, everybody!  May 2014 be filled with joy!

Fare thee well, friend!

Friday, December 27, 2013

Lost in the Lights

So, the local zoo here has a tradition around Christmastime where they put up lights all over the zoo and leave it open at night (usually they close around five or six).  They call it "Zoolights".
Well, I have never been to Zoolights.  Why?  Because a) it's a fairly new tradition, they just started a few years ago, and b) when I say "local", I mean an hour-long drive away.  However, my parents bought zoo memberships this year, and it included a free trip to Zoolights, which they invited me to!
It was pretty neat, but mostly I just enjoyed seeing the animals that aren't usually awake during the day.  Sad confession time, our zoo has these cute little wild cats (they're called sand cats and black-footed cats), and they are sooooo adorable... and since I discovered them at the age of 8, I have waited more than TEN FREAKING YEARS to see them awake!
So worth it.  They are adoooooorable!
Most exciting part of the night, however?  Eh heh heh... Well, it was really cold, and I hadn't had time to grab my hat between leaving work and leaving for the zoo, so I just put my hood up over my head.  Now, there are two facts about me you should know: I hate wearing hoods, because peripheral vision is reduced to zip, and I hate walking in front of people because I tend to lose them.  I suppose you can guess what happened?
We were walking along the path, and somehow I ended up walking in front of everyone.  Again, I couldn't see much with that hood on, and I wasn't sure if they were behind me, so when we came to the elephant enclosure, I found a nice little nook to pop into and turn around to see if anyone was following me.
Nope.  No one.  At first I thought I'd gone ahead of them too far, or they'd stopped to admire something without telling me, so I waited a little longer.  Still nothing.  Finally, I pulled out my cell phone and tried to call Mia to see if they had gone on without me.  Guess what?  Phones wouldn't connect.  Apparently, there is really awful reception around elephants. ;)  After wandering around a little and getting fed up and calling lots of people, I was able to get ahold of my Dad.  We reunited, and they were waiting for me with hot chocolate! 

Fare thee well, friend!

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

A Journey Back

King Benjamin's son, King Mosiah II, eventually grew curious about the people of Zeniff, who had gone back to possess the Land of Nephi (which the Lamanites were occupying).  He chose a group of men led by a man named Ammon to see just what had happened to the Zeniff's people.  When they finally made it, they met the current king outside the walls.
He had them thrown in jail.
Finally he had them brought to him so he could pass judgement, and when Ammon explained who they were, Limhi rejoiced.  Apparently their imprisonment had to do with a case of mistaken identity.  He explained that they were being held as slaves by the Lamanites, and he begged them to save his people.  He explained to them what had happened when Zeniff arrived...
But that will have to wait for next week.  Sorry, all, but being Christmas Eve, I have some family stuff I need to dash off for.  Merry Christmas, everyone!

Fare thee well, friend!

Monday, December 23, 2013

Musings on Psychology

One of my favorite things to do when I'm bored at work is to get onto Grooveshark, come up with a list of what music I wanted to listen to that day, then rearrange my favorites and come up with a character based on the music.  However, as I was listening today I was thinking about what other people would come up with if handed the same playlist I was using.  And so, out of curiosity, I thought I would post a list of the songs I was using today and see what you all came up with!  Leave your response in the comments!
1) Skid Row (Little Shop of Horrors)
2) When Somebody Loved Me (Toy Story 2)
3) Shadowland (the Broadway version of The Lion King)
4) Come Little Children (Hocus Pocus)
5) Transformation (Brother Bear)
6) Tarnished Silver (by Heather Dale)
7) Let It Go (Frozen)
8) Brimstone and Treacle Part I (Broadway version of Mary Poppins)
9) Temper Temper (Broadway version of Mary Poppins)
10) Brimstone and Treacle Part II (Broadway version of Mary Poppins)

Fare thee well, friend!

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Shocking Prices

And I mean that in a good way. Seriously, this is the lowest I have seen gas since I was in elementary school.  And it's WINTER!!!  Gas is never this cheap in winter!  In fact, gas is never this cheap period.  I was able to fill my car up for less than thirty dollars today!  Nine gallons for less than thirty dollars!!!  It's a miracle!  But of course, it's Christmas, so I suppose that shouldn't be a surprise. ;)  Nevertheless, I am still pleasantly shocked.  Very pleasantly shocked. 
Sorry, random post, but I'm feeling a little random today anyway.  And since I can say it now, Merry Christmas everyone!

Fare thee well, friend!

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

A Brief Run of History

The next few books - Enos, Jarom, Omni, and Words of Mormon- are each only a chapter long, and most of them are only a brief explanation of the history of the Nephites, as told by whatever record-keeper had the plates at the time.  Through the books it is explained that at some point in their history, the Nephites actually became more wicked than the Lamanites.  There was a small group of righteous Nephites who were warned to flee, led by a man named Mosiah.  The rest were destroyed by the Lamanites, and their lands were occupied.
Mosiah's people, in fleeing the Lamanites, came across a group of people led by a man named Zarahemla.  Their language was completely different, but eventually Mosiah was able to teach them the Nephite language, and he discovered they were descended from King Zedekiah, whose son Mulek had been smuggled out of Israel before he could be killed by the Babylonians.  He and his followers had crossed the sea as well, but without scriptures, so they had forgotten God.  Mosiah's people were able to teach them, and Mosiah was elected the king of the two people.  Zarahemla also mentioned that when Mulek's people had arrived, they had discovered a man named Coriantumr, who claimed to be the last surviving member of a powerful nation called the Jaredites (that'll be important later).  He lived with them nine months and then died.
By the reign of Mosiah's son, King Benjamin, there was a group of Nephites who wanted to go back and repossess the land of Nephi (the land the Lamanites were currently occupying).  A first group started out, but ended up destroying each other, thanks to the fact that half of them wanted to destroy the Lamanites and half of them wanted to negotiate.  Those who survived came back in defeat, but eventually a second group, led by a man named Zerrif, set out.  They were not heard from again in the lifetimes of their loved ones.
The man who was keeping the record by the end of Omni, named Amaleki, had no family left to leave the records with (his brother had left with Zerrif), and his record ends when he decides to give the records to King Benjamin to care for.

Wow, that was a lot of history in not a lot of time.  Huh.

Fare thee well, friend!

P.S. Finals are over!  I can start breathing again!

Monday, December 16, 2013

Frozen: The Epicness of Elsa

So, I saw Frozen.  And I love it so. so. soooo much!  In fact, I ended up loving it even more than Tangled, which is saying a lot considering Rapunzel has been my favorite Disney princess thus far.  Sadly for her, I've had a new princess step up to take that position (though I guess technically she's a queen, but who's counting?).
I.  Love.  Elsa.
Why do I love Elsa?  Well, if you don't mind spoilers or you've already seen the movie, read on!
Elsa has to be the most relatable Disney princess I've seen thus far, at least for me.  Personally, and for a lot of girls out there, it is really hard to fit in.  I've always been the geeky know-it-all that was terrified nobody liked her, the one that liked who I was and was hurt when nobody else did.  Elsa is the epitome of wanting to fit in while being terrified of rejection.  All her life she's loved a part of herself that no one else could possibly understand.  She loved her powers, but she had to hide them because she was afraid of hurting people.  She ends up cutting herself off from everyone else because she couldn't believe she was worth their friendship.  Not to mention that, as the heir to the throne and the older sister, she has that much more responsibility to add to her fear of failure.  Finally, when she couldn't handle that fear anymore, she left.  She decided to be herself, to heck with whatever anyone may think of her!  And then this happened:
I love everything about this!  The animation is absolute eye-candy, the music is loud and free, and the message is something I think everyone needs to hear: I don't care what anyone else thinks of me, because I love myself the way I am (FYI, this is also the reason I love the film Penelope)!  And that last act of defiance, taking out that bun and letting her hair down!  Finally throwing off the expectations everyone else had for her and deciding she was just fine the way she wanted to be!
And of course, by the end of the film she realizes there are people that love all of her, and are willing to sacrifice themselves for her, and she understands she doesn't have to be on her own to be herself.  Which is awesome.
Therefore, Elsa is amazing.
So, your thoughts?  Do you prefer Elsa or Anna?

Fare thee well, friend!

Friday, December 13, 2013


What.  A.  Week.
Last week of school, and I am exhausted.  I dunno what it was about this semester, but it really threw me for a loop (though it might have something to do with that dance class).  All I know now is that I want to get finals over and done with as soon as I can, and then sit down and write as much as I possibly can. :)

Speaking of writing, I did get One More Day!  Kay got an unexpected order in (they were supposed to go to her parents, but ended up here), and I was able to just buy one from her.  I was very happy. :)  I think my favorites were "Sleepless Beauty" and "A Morrow More", but I also really enjoyed "Dark Rose" and "Stage Fright".  You can get it at Amazon here!  Check it out, and enjoy!  Might help you students out there get through finals week. ;)

Fare thee well, friend!

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Jacob and Sherem

At this point, Nephi's younger brother Jacob has started keeping the record.  At some point before his book starts, Nephi has died and left Jacob in charge of the ministry.  And he does a brilliant job of it, I may add.  Some of the most beautiful sermons in the Book of Mormon are taught by Jacob.  However, I would never be able to do them justice, so I'll just stick to the stories (if you do want to read them, however, the Book of Mormon is available to download for free on the app store.  Or, if you see any of those young men walking around in suits and ties with nametags that say "The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints" and really want to make their day, you could ask them for a copy ;)). 
Most of the Book of Jacob contains his sermons, but one story stands out.  Near the end of Jacob's life, there came an Anti-Christ named Sherem, who taught there was no such thing as Christ.  He was known as a well-learned man, and also as a bit of a flatterer.  What he really wanted was to convince Jacob that Christ would never come, so one day he came to Jacob and started the equivalent of a Book of Mormon Bible Bash.  During this, Sherem did the one of the worst things you can when you're fighting God: he asked for a sign.
You'll see later that Anti-Christs (people preaching against the idea of Christ) asking for a sign always leads to trouble for them.  The purpose of a miracle is to strengthen a testimony already established, and to help others.  Miracles were never meant to be the reason someone believed.  In the case of Anti-Christs, they want a miracle as proof that what they are saying is wrong, but at that point, they are denying every other piece of evidence they have.  God will give them a sign, but it won't be something they like.
Jacob tried to warn Sherem, but Sherem insisted, so God gave him a sign.  Sherem was struck by God.  He fell to the ground and had to be helped to get basic nourishment for several days, before he finally told the people in general that he knew he was going to die, and he had something he wanted to say.  When they were all gathered, he told them that what he had been preaching was wrong, and that he had been deceived.  When he couldn't speak anymore, he died.
I've always wondered about this story, because on his deathbed, Sherem did repent.  I've always wondered what happened to him afterward.  Mostly I just feel sorry for him.  I can't imagine the guilt and the heartache he went through in those last days of his life, the horror he would have felt when he received God's sign.  I also kind of admire what he did at his death, admitting he was wrong.  It takes a lot of courage to admit to anyone when you've been wrong, even when you know it's true.

Oh, and for everyone who has only just started reading these Book of Mormon stories, the link to the beginning is here.  I post them every Tuesday. :)

Fare thee well, friend!

Thursday, December 5, 2013


Recently watching Beauty and the Beast, I discovered something I had never thought of before: Lumiere is awesome.
Now, obviously all Disney sidekicks are pretty awesome, but a lot of them tend to be a little flat, particularly in Beauty and the Beast.  There are just too many walking, talking everyday items to make them each a very deep character, and I get that.  However, I did notice a few very deep points about Lumiere:
1) No matter what Beast did, Lumiere was still himself.  Beast had been snarling about unexpected guests all day, and Lumiere still had the confidence to put on a dinner show, against Beast's strict orders.
2) Even when he was terrified of the repercussions that might have come with sticking up for Maurice, Lumiere tried to explain why he'd let him in.  That takes serious guts.  When Belle traded her life for her father's, Lumiere was the one to remind Beast that, when trying to woo a woman, gentleness was the best policy.  He was constantly sticking his metaphorical neck out for other people.
3) The more I watch the movie, the more I am convinced Lumiere was the closest thing Beast had to a friend.  I mean, Mrs. Potts was great, but she was more of a motherly figure for everyone in the film.  Cogsworth was always worrying about himself, and Chip, while adorable, was a little kid.  Lumiere was probably the closest to Beast's age, and he was the most encouraging when it came to Beast breaking the spell.  He was the one offering the most suggestions on how to win Belle's affections.  When Beast had a question, it was always presented with Lumiere in the room, and Lumiere was usually the one answering.  He had Beast's trust in a way none of the other servants did.
Lumiere is amazing.  If more proof is needed, look no further:
Oh, and he gets a bonus point because he actually slapped Cogsworth in the face with a glove when they fought at the end.  Fencing reference!

Fare thee well, friend!

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

The Schism

Well, Lehi's family has finally made it to the Promised Land, and you would think the happily ever after would kick in here.  Except that this is real life, and there's always another story to be told.
As long as Lehi lived, Laman and Lemuel showed some restraint.  Eventually, however, Lehi did die, and after a few days, they began to complain again.  You see, as the older brothers it should have been their birthright, Laman's specifically, to be the religious heads of the family.  Unfortunately, due to their constant rebellions and attempts at murder in their travels, they had lost that right, and it passed to Nephi (I actually think it should have been passed to Sam, but he was always a humble man, and I think he understood that Nephi was a natural-born leader.  It never actually mentions what happens there).  Laman and Lemuel couldn't get over the fact that their younger brother was considered their rightful leader by most of the family, and eventually, their murderous habits popped up again.  They decided they were going to kill Nephi. 
As evidenced through most of the Books of Nephi (the first two sections of the Book of Mormon), they could have been stopped easily, but... come on, they had been threatening to kill him since day one, and their hatred for him was only growing.  Before they could bring their plots to fruition, God warned Nephi in a dream to take everyone who would go with him and flee.  Nephi and his followers escaped, and the only revenge left to Laman and Lemuel was to teach their children that Nephi was a liar and a thief (he'd taken with him the brass plates, the Liahona, and the sword of Laban).  Eventually, two great nations grew up from these two groups.  Nephi's descendants, as well as those of the people who left with him, were known as Nephites, and Laman and Lemuel's descendants were known as Lamanites.
One thing I find interesting about this story is that it specifically says "take all who will go with you".  It's not mentioned, but I've always wondered if maybe some of Laman and Lemuel's children decided to go with them as well.

So, writing this post, I realized I haven't really explained the structure of The Book of Mormon.  It's divided into 15 different sections, known as "books".  The first two are the 1st and 2nd books of Nephi, and are written by Nephi.  The next book, the book of Jacob, was written by his younger brother.  The next three books, Enos, Jarom, and Omni, are written by the descendants of Jacob, and mostly they're a lot of "I'm the son of him, quick overview of history, pass to the next caretaker."  Words of Mormon, the next book, is a brief insert by Mormon, one of the last Nephite prophets, who explains that for the rest of the book he will be abridging the history and teaching of his people (apparently the original record would be even bigger than the Bible).  The books of Mosiah, Alma, Helaman, 3rd and 4th Nephi, and Mormon, all record the long history of the Nephites, as well as the teachings of their prophets.  Ether is a record translated by King Mosiah of the people living in the Promised Land before Lehi's family, and the last book, Moroni, is written by Mormon's son, the very last, very lonely Nephite prophet.  He survived the destruction of his people long enough to finish and hide the record so it wouldn't be destroyed by the Lamanites.

Fare thee well, friend!

Monday, December 2, 2013

The Happiest Time of the Year!

Well, I'm back from Colorado, where I spent Thanksgiving, and ready to start celebrating my absolute favorite time of the year!  CHRISTMAS TIME!!!!
Yep, I love Christmas.  I love it so much!  I would have started decorating before Thanksgiving if not for my roommates trying to keep me in check (yes, I am one of those people).  Ash made my day when she brought in a Christmas tree after she got back from Thanksgiving.  The thing that I love about these last few months of the year is that you can just move from one celebration to another.
And speaking of things to celebrate, NEW BOOK OUT! 
One More Day, published by J. Taylor Publishing, is a collection of short stories by various authors, including Kimberly Kay and Danielle E. Shipley.  If you had one day before the world froze, how would you fix it?
For a more official look at the story, take a look here, at Kay's blog, or here, on Danielle's blog.  Personally, I've been waiting for this release for months, so I'm really excited! 

Fare thee well, friend!

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

The Voyage

The sea voyage to the Promised Land for Lehi and his family... could be considered less-than-stellar.  And I bet you can guess who they had to thank for that.
Yep.  Laman and Lemuel.
The voyage actually started out pretty well.  They were making good time, and things were relatively peaceful.  Perhaps too peaceful, because that was when Laman and Lemuel, along with their wives and Ishmael's sons, decided to get drunk and party it up.  Nephi started to worry that God would be angry with them, and tried to get them to stop.  And they agreed, and everything went well from then on.
Laman and Lemuel tied Nephi up.  Apparently they were still nervous enough about the last time they were told off that they didn't try to kill him, but they weren't above injuring him.  But, thanks to their rebellion, their compass, the Liahona, stopped working.  Even then, with everyone pleading for them to let Nephi go and the stress of their rebellion nearly killing Lehi and Sariah, Laman and Lemuel were too stubborn to admit they were wrong.  That is, until a giant storm came upon them for four days and they were on the brink of capsizing.  Then they were finally scared enough to untie Nephi.  The first thing he did was thank God, and the second was to grab the Liahona and see if it would work.  Once it was established that it was working again, Nephi prayed, and the storm finally died.
Finally, finally, they made it to the Promised Land.

Fare thee well, friend!

Saturday, November 23, 2013

A Huge Mistake

The other night I realized I have made a huge tactical error.
You see, the mythology behind my book involves lots of scary, nasty creatures.  And the scary, nasty creature I use most prominently in the book is the giant spider (and yes, I am well aware of the fact that this has been done by both The Lord of the Rings and Harry Potter.  No need to point that out).  Well, I was writing one of the spider scenes, and I realized in order to properly describe giant spiders, I would actually need to look up pictures of spiders.  Enlarged, close-up pictures of spiders.  And this was half-an-hour before I needed to go to bed.
Shelob has nothing on the internet!!!!!

Fare thee well, friend!

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Farewell to a Fish

We didn't plan on taking him.  He belonged to our last roommate, Kah.  But of course, when one is moving to California, it can be difficult to pack a fish.  Thus, Kay and I inherited a little blue beta named Dr. Seuss.
He lived a full, happy life.  By the end he'd known several tripod frogs, and a pair of large snails.  But eventually all good things must come to an end, and last week, our dear Dr. Seuss passed away.
Though in all fairness, we could all see it coming.  He'd been acting weird for days, and he was a reeeeaaaally  old beta.  He had a remarkably full life. 
And now, thanks to our marvelous Sarnic who works at a pet store and therefore gives us info on the pets there, we have a lovely new orange-and-blue beta named Agent (we're fans of Marvel's Agents of SHIELD, in case you can't tell). 

Fare thee well, friend!

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Nephi Builds a Boat

While resting in Bountiful, Nephi received a dream from God, telling him to go to a nearby mountain.  When Nephi got there, God instructed him to build a boat to take the family across the ocean to a land of promise.  Now, Nephi could have balked a little at this point.  Across an ocean?  To a land we know nothing about?  But of course we all know Nephi better than that.  :)  I think the bigger temptation would have been to ask, "Okay, so where are all the tools I'll need to build the ship?"  A big problem that faithful people run into is that they expect God to do everything for them.  It's not a bad thing to rely on God, but He does want us to learn to be independent and make our own choices.  Instead of asking where the tools were, Nephi asked, "Okay, where can I find the right ores so I can make the tools I'll need?" 
Please excuse me while I squee for a moment.
HOW AMAZING CAN NEPHI BE?!  He was willing to start from scratch, without complaining.  How long would it have taken him to make all the tools he would need?  And how long after that would it take him to build a ship?  And then sail it across an OCEAN?  Hard-working, patient, AND faithful!
Okay, squee moment over.  Thanks for your patience.
Of course, Nephi's patience was tested by his older brothers.  Again.  Nephi had never built a ship before, and Laman and Lemuel were both convinced he was going to fail in a big way.  They were bad enough that they refused to help him work, even when everyone else was giving Nephi a hand.  Finally, Nephi had to chastise them.  Again.  And they decided to throw him in the ocean so they could kill him.  Again.
I think God must have been really irritated with them at this point, because when they went to grab Nephi, he was filled with the power of God, and he had to warn them to stay back, because if they touched him they would die.  He proceeded to thoroughly chew them out, and then (this is the reason I think God was annoyed), God told Nephi to touch his brothers.  He assured Nephi they wouldn't die, but they would be shocked pretty badly.
Laman and Lemuel didn't dare go near Nephi for days afterward, and when the ship was finished, guess who had to admit that it was actually a really good design?

Fare thee well, friend!

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Hanging Storage

So, when my apartment decorated for Halloween, the first thing we put up were spiderwebs.  They are a necessity for Halloween, after all.  And of course, we had little spiders to stick up with it.  Unfortunately, I was at work when they went up, so I didn't know just how they were placed.  I found out later that all my roommates had to do was throw the spiders at a spot in the webs, and they tended to stick pretty well.
That's when things got fun.
One day someone got the idea to throw a pen at the webs, and it stuck.  Well, we have a story we've been writing, and we each have a specific pen, so we chucked those at the webs and started using them as storage.  You can imagine how things went from there.  At the moment we've got a couple rubber snakes and a ribbon up there as well. 
It's gonna be a great disappointment when we have to take those down.  At least until I start decorating for Christmas. ;)

Fare thee well, friend!

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Eight Years in the Wilderness

Soon after his dream of the tree of life, Lehi had another dream where God told him it was time to start traveling in the wilderness so He could guide them to a land of promise.  When Lehi awoke the next morning, there was a curious device outside his tent.  It was a little ball, with writing on it and two pointers to show them where to go.  It was called a Liahona.
Lehi and his family spent eight years in the wilderness, during which time Ishmael died, Lehi's sons (and Zoram) married Ishmael's daughters, and each family was blessed with children.  Including, incidentally, Lehi and Sariah themselves.  They had two more sons, Jacob and Joseph, named after Lehi's ancestors. 
Presumably they had many incidents while in the wilderness, but the one recorded was when Nephi, Laman, and Lemuel all broke their bows and couldn't hunt for food.  Everyone, including Lehi, started complaining, asking how God could let this happen to them.  It got so bad the Liahona stopped working.
And what did Nephi do? 
He made himself a new bow.  It doesn't mention it, but I have to imagine there was quite a bit of eye-rolling on Nephi's part.  After that he went to Lehi and asked him to pray about where he should go hunting.  Just an insert, I think this is incredibly significant.  Nephi could have just said, "Well, I'm done with all of you whiners" and asked God himself.  Instead, he chose to honor his father and spiritual leader, and maybe give his father a gentle reminder of his responsibility.  Lehi did pray, and was pretty well-chewed out for complaining.  Then God told him to look at the Liahona.  The writing had changed, and they learned the Liahona only worked according to their faith.  If they trusted God, the Liahona would point them in the right direction.  If they didn't, it would stop working entirely.  It was a sobering moment for everyone.
At the end of the eight years, Lehi's family finally reached the seashore, in a place they called Bountiful.  Not sure how long they stayed here, but it was a wonderful place to rest and relax before the final stretch of their journey.

Fare thee well, friend!

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Top Ten Disney Deaths

So, I've seen these lists all over the place, and I thought I'd put my two cents in.  Just a note, I did actually plan on doing this on Halloween, but instead I ended up running around like a chicken with its head cut off.
Let the deaths begin! >:)

Number 10: Mother Gothel
As much as I love Mother Gothel as a villain, her death disappointed me.  Apparently she died of old age, but Disney used the whole villain-falls-from-an-extreme-height trope to keep from traumatizing kids.  I get why they did it, but I honestly thought it made the movie a little confusing.  It took a few views to figure out she had turned to dust before she hit the ground.  It's redeeming qualities, however, include Gothel tripping over the hair she once prized, and Rapunzel reaching out for her as she fell in spite of everything.  That poor, poor girl.

Number 9: Queen Grimhilde
The Evil Queen was hit by lightening, fell from a tremendous height (again, trope), and was subsequently crushed by the boulder she was trying to use to kill the dwarves.  Oh, and anything left of her after that was eaten by vultures.  Again, not one of the greater deaths, but this woman just gets one horrible thing after another.  Guess that's karma, huh?

Number 8: Scar
Eaten by your own evil henchmen?  While flames are flying around you?  Yikes.  An added bonus is the image of the shadows on the wall behind him.  Perfect way to imply violence without actually showing it to the kiddies.  Seriously, though, Scar is the prime example of why you shouldn't betray your henchmen.  There are a million of them, one of you, and they will not hesitate if you don't follow through.  There is a reason these people are henchmen and not sidekicks (ie, they go for the highest bidder.  Loyalty for them is bought, not earned).

Number 7: Gaston
Again, a Disney villain falls to their death.  However, this scores high on my list because it has delicious irony (and I am a sucker for irony).  The fact is, if Gaston had taken Beast's offer, he could have gone back to his poor provincial town and married one of the ditzy blondes that actually liked him.  Instead, he decided if he couldn't have Belle, no one could, and he went in for the kill.  AND THEN, he didn't even die because Beast pushed him off.  He fell because he was stupid enough to attack Beast while they were both hanging off a balcony, and he lost his grip during Beast's writhing in pain.  Sorry to say, Gaston, you deserved what you got.

Number 6: Maleficent
The thing I love about Maleficent's death is that it's deliberate.  So many Disney heroes only kill their villains accidentally, which is great, because it shows you shouldn't take a life lightly.  However, I also believe it's important to show that sometimes you have to do the hard thing.  Phillip could choose to kill the angry dragon and save Aurora, or he could choose to let the nasty witch continue to ruin people's lives.  When the time came, he did what he had to do and stopped evil before it could do any more harm.  That takes guts, and Phillip has them (in case you can't tell, I'm sort of in love with Phillip :D).

Number 5:  Ursula
Again, this is a deliberate death.  What makes this one great is that at this point Ursula looks completely unstoppable.  She looks like she's about 70 feet tall, wields a giant trident, and is about to fry poor Ariel.  The problem is, she thinks she's invincible as well, and forgets about the attractive, resourceful prince long enough for him to find something sharp and pointy.  And then proceeds to attack his girlfriend.  That is rule number 376 in the list of ways for villains to get themselves killed: threaten the romantic interest.  Ursula's overconfidence is her undoing.

Number 4:  Shan Yu

Mostly I love this for the absolute shock Shan Yu must have felt.  It looks like he's about to win: the random woman soldier is holding a freaking fan.  Then he lunges, and his sword is gone.  Next thing he knows he's looking at a tiny dragon with a giant rocket strapped to his back (keep in mind up to this point the only person who has seen Mushu for what he really is would be Mulan herself).  Then, while he's distracted, afore-mentioned woman trips him, pins him with his own sword, and he's hit in the gut with afore-mentioned rocket.  Things for him went from awesome to death in about five seconds, and I would love to see his thought process through this!

Number 3:  Turbo
Mostly, this hits my top terrifying list because Turbo knows exactly what is going to happen to him, but is completely helpless to stop it.  I would say I feel bad for him, but honestly, he was going to make Ralph watch as Vanellope was eaten by giant candy monsters.  My sympathy for him is zip.

Number 2:  Facilier
Okay, this one is uber-creepy.  There are neon green and pink lights, creepy dolls with pins sticking out of them playing drums, and gravestones coming to life.  What makes it even better is that throughout the entire movie, Facilier looks like he's in control of everything.  The second Tiana breaks the amulet, his facade crumbles.  He is absolutely terrified for the first time.  Villains losing their cool?  Awesome.  Also, speaking of thought processes I'd love to see, can you imagine what Tiana must have been thinking when this started: Take that you rotten OH CRAP THERE ARE LIGHTS AND CREEPY DOLLS WHATISHAPPENING?!?!

And number 1 (drumroll please):  Frollo
Ah, the death of Judge Claude Frollo.  I mentioned before I'm a sucker for irony, and this is the perfect example.  Throughout the movie Frollo prides himself on being more righteous than anybody else.  His final words: God shall smite the wicked and cast them into the fiery pit.  Yes, yes He will, Frollo, but look at who fell into the inferno you made of Paris?

Yeah, so this was a creepy post, but hey, I did say it was supposed to be for Halloween!

Fare thee well, friend!

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Nephi's Vision

After Lehi related his dream to his family, Nephi was curious.  He wanted to see it as well, so he went off on his own and prayed for the chance to see his father's vision and know what it meant.  While he was praying, the Spirit of God came to him and showed him Lehi's vision.  Nephi was also given the interpretation of the symbols in the vision: the tree was the love of God for His children, and the fruit was eternal life, the greatest gift God can give.  The iron rod was the word of God, which leads people to His gospel.  The river of water was the filthiness of the world, and the mists were temptations.  The great building was the pride of the world, where people mocked those who partook of God's goodness.
Nephi was also shown what would happen to his descendents.  They would be led to a land of promise, and his children would live there for many years.  In fact, they would even be visited by the Messiah after His death in Jerusalem.  However, eventually pride and the love of the world would lead to his people's ultimate destruction.
After his vision, Nephi was so overcome that he went back to his tent and collapsed.  He only came out after he heard his brothers arguing about what Lehi's dream meant.  He asked them if they had prayed about it, and their response was that God never made such things known to them (to which I respond, really?  It might be hard if you don't even ask!).  Poor Nephi could only beg them to try to repent and remain close to God, but I don't know how much hope he had for them.  You see, in his vision, it was Laman and Lemuel's descendants that eventually destroyed his own people.

Fare thee well, friend!

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Spooky Stories

Since elementary school, I've learned it's better for me to avoid scary stories.  Why?  Because I have a tendency to half believe everything I hear.  I can tell you it makes Tower of Terror an absolute nightmare.  In any case, as I've grown up, I've decided it's silly to be scared of spooky stories.  They're only stories, after all.  Why, I deal with stories all the time!
Which is why I was so excited when I found out my friend Heather would be performing in a Halloween story contest hosted at our local library.  I'd heard the story she would be telling before, and I really enjoyed it, so I went to the contest with high hopes.  Even ran into Coach, who waved me over and offered a seat so us fencers could sit together.
By the end of the night I was struggling not to hide behind him.
Seriously, the stories were amazing!  Really well done, and appropriately spooky.  And the next day I was late to school because it was still dark when I woke up and I was convinced that as soon as I got out from under my covers, something was going to come eat me.

Fare thee well, friend!

Saturday, November 2, 2013

Your Hair is Down?

I had an interesting conversation the other day.  My Welsh class is right after my Irish Dance class, which means nine times out of ten, my hair is up when I go.  Or, more accurately, every day besides Halloween, when we weren't actually going to be dancing because everyone was going to be in costume.  Since I was going as a witch, I thought I would leave my hair down (which is actually fairly unusual; I'm too vain to cut my hair, but leaving it down gives it opportunity to get frizzy).  No one really said much about it, which is what I expected.  I mean, I'm used to having long hair.  But then, after Welsh, my friend and I were heading to the parking lot when our professor passed us.  He stopped, looked at me in surprise, and said, "Do you usually have your hair up?"  I guess he just wasn't used to seeing me with long hair.  Though I guess I shouldn't be too surprised.  Usually it's in a bun, which hides length pretty well.  I just thought it was funny he didn't realize I actually had long hair.

Fare thee well, friend!

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Lehi's Dream

So, now the group is all together.  Lehi and Ishmael's families are out in the wilderness, with the scriptures, and for a little while, things calm down.  Then one night, Lehi has a dream that he is inspired to tell his family about.
He says while he dreamed, he was in a dark, lonely wilderness, and he didn't know where to go.  Lost, he called out to God, and a man appeared to guide him.  The man led him to a tree with fruit whiter than driven snow, and sweeter than anything he'd ever tasted before.  After tasting the fruit, Lehi's first thought was that he wanted to share it with his family.  He looked around and saw them at the mouth of a wide river, looking as if they didn't know where to go.  He called out to them, and most of them came eagerly.  Laman and Lemuel, however, refused. 
As Lehi looked around, he noticed more and more people on a path, trying to get to the tree.  Some of them got lost in a mist that sprang up.  They had to cross the river, and many people drowned.  Those who didn't drown were holding tight to a rod of iron, leading straight to the tree.  When they got there and tasted the fruit, however, some of them suddenly looked ashamed and left.  When Lehi looked around to see why, he noticed a great and spacious building, floating in the air.  It was filled with people mocking those who ate the fruit, and there were many people trying to reach it, though most drowned before they could get to it.
No matter what Lehi said, Laman and Lemuel wouldn't eat the fruit.

Fare thee well, friend!

Friday, October 25, 2013

My First Haunted House

Not as bad as I thought it was gonna be, actually.  I will admit, I screamed more than Kay and Ash combined, and I couldn't go first through anything, but it was actually a lot of fun.  And I didn't end up a blubbering mess by the end, which is a definite plus!  Honestly, I had the most fun snarking at the actors.  I know it makes it more boring for them, but if I didn't snark I was going to go crazy, so there we go.  I think the scariest bit for me was the mental asylum.  I don't do crazy labs.
Best part of the night?  The very last section had constant strobe lights, and by the time I got out my eyes were burning.  There were actors milling around outside, trying to scare people waiting, but I didn't think much of it.  Kay, Ash and I were just standing around talking, and I complained that I still couldn't see.  At which point Kay smirked and said that in that case I probably shouldn't look over my shoulder.
I was so jumpy I didn't even bother finding out if she was pulling my leg or not.  I gave a scream and got behind her as fast as I could.  Turns out one of the actors from the last haunt was standing behind me.  *shuddder*.

In less creepy news:  For those of you readers in Utah, my most marvelous sister-in-law Kar is offering piano lessons!  She's an amazing teacher.  If any of you know someone looking for a teacher, please share the information!  Here is her website, check it out!  Let people know!

Fare thee well, friend!

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

The Family of Ishmael

And here we go, Nephi and his brothers going to get the family of Ishmael to join them in the wilderness.  I have to say, this is one of my favorite stories from the Book of Mormon.  I've been really excited to write this!

Nephi and his brothers had just gotten back from Jerusalem with the brass plates.  It was a long, dangerous journey and Laman and Lemuel constantly complained about it.  A few days after they got back, Lehi came to his sons and told them the Lord had commanded him to send them back to Jerusalem one more time to get Lehi's cousin, Ishmael, and convince him (and his family full of eligible daughters) to join them so they could have families.
Guess who didn't complain this time?
So off the sons went, and as far as we know it wasn't too hard to convince Ishmael.  At least, it wasn't documented if it was.  What we do know is that halfway back to Lehi in the wilderness, Laman and Lemuel had enough.  They, and a few members of Ishmael's family, refused to keep going.  They wanted to go back to Jerusalem because they believed their father was insane and wasn't really having visions. 
Nephi was understandably irritated, and he let them know it.  He basically said fine, if you want to go back to Jerusalem and get yourselves killed, go ahead.  Just don't come crying to us when Jerusalem really is destroyed.  Of course, Laman and Lemuel weren't happy with that.  In fact, they were angry enough to kill.  They tied Nephi up and were planning on just leaving him in the desert to be eaten.
You have to wonder if they remembered what happened last time they tried to beat Nephi up (aka, angel appearing and chewing them out).
Nephi was always described as a strong man.  He could have relied on his strength to save him at this point.  Instead, he prayed to God, and with His help Nephi was able to break his bonds before he could be left to die.
When Laman and Lemuel saw this, they were furious, and this time they weren't content just waiting.  They were going to just kill Nephi themselves, until one of Ishmael's daughters, Ishmael's wife, and one of his sons begged them to stop.  When the pair had finally come to their senses, they begged for forgiveness, and the family returned to Lehi again.

So, this story is a bit shorter than the others, but I love it.  Why?  Let's go back a moment: One of Ishmael's daughters.  Even though it made more sense for Nephi to mention the mother first, it was the daughter he wants us to know right away (for clarification, Nephi is the one writing the record at this point).  The Book of Mormon doesn't say much about Nephi's love life, but a few years ago reading I noticed a cross-reference about this woman to a verse a few chapters later, where Nephi mentions taking a wife.
Now, this is all strictly my own speculations.  THIS IS NOT CHURCH DOCTRINE!  However, I can't help wondering if Nephi owed his life to the woman who would eventually become his wife. :)

Fare thee well, friend!

Friday, October 18, 2013

Castle Amphitheater

So, I'm not actually too into Halloween.  I mean, I enjoy dressing up and eating pumpkin-flavored treats, but I've never really been into scaring myself. 
Until I met Ash. 
For those of you who haven't been following, Ash is the newest roommate in our apartment (and another writer, so that makes life interesting. ;)).  She LOVES Halloween, and it's starting to rub off.  Our apartment is now decorated with spiders and vampire portraits, and at some point closer to the actual holiday we're putting bloody footprints on the floor. 
Well, part of the Halloween fun is getting scared, right?  Well, it just so happens that near an old mental hospital in the next city over, there's a theater.  But not just a theater.  A castle.  A castle amphitheater sitting between the mountains and the mental hospital.
What better place to perform a Halloween show?
So Ash and I went to see Doctor Faustus.  It was fascinating!  Having never seen it before, I was enthralled!  I think the most interesting part was the way they showed how the devil works.  All throughout the play angels were trying to convince Faust to repent, but every time he hesitated, the devils would swarm in and tell him that he had no hope for repentance.  There were so many times everyone in the audience was shouting at him to repent (they wanted a very interactive audience), but he just refused to believe there was any hope for him.  It was really well done!
Well, I guess now it's on to the next Halloween experience: a haunted house.

Fare thee well, friend!

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Nephi and the Brass Plates: Part 2

Here's the second half to the story.  If you missed the first half, you can check it out here

Nephi snuck into the city at night without really knowing what he was doing.  All he knew was that if God had asked them to do something, there was obviously a way to get it done.  As he was walking through the streets of Jerusalem, he came upon a drunk passed out in the street.  When he took a closer look, he realized it was Laban, and the Spirit of God told Nephi to kill him.
At first Nephi shrunk back.  He had never killed anyone in his life, and he certainly didn't want to start now.  But the Spirit spoke to him again and reminded him of a few things: Laban had not only stolen from Nephi and his brothers (a crime punishable by death), but he had also attempted to have them murdered; if Nephi didn't kill Laban and take the plates, Nephi's own descendents would quickly fall into apostasy because they wouldn't have the scriptures; and God had delivered Laban into Nephi's hands for this reason.  Laban was known as a wicked man.  So, though the idea repulsed him, Nephi took Laban's sword from its sheath and cut off his head.
Afterwards Nephi put on Laban's armor (it fit pretty well because Nephi was "large in stature") and went to Laban's house to find the brass plates in the treasury.  While he was there he ran into one of Laban's servants, a man named Zoram.  He asked Zoram, who assumed he was Laban, to take him to the treasury, then come with him to meet his brothers outside the walls of Jerusalem (Zoram assumed he meant elders).
When Nephi finally made it to his brothers, however, they saw him in Laban's armor and started running in terror, assuming Laban had killed Nephi and had come after them.  Nephi had to take off the helmet and call to them, which was when Zoram realized what must have happened to Laban.  He turned to run and alert the city.  Obviously Nephi didn't want that, so he turned and grabbed Zoram and tried to reason with him.  He told Zoram that if he would come with Nephi and his brothers, he would be a free man: they would treat him as an equal.  Zoram agreed, and they escaped Jerusalem and returned to their parents without incident.  By studying the brass plates, Lehi learned that he was a descendent of Joseph through Manasseh. 
A few days later, the Lord had another request to make of them.  Up to now, it had only been Lehi's fairly young family in the wilderness.  Now God needed them to go to Lehi's relative, Ishmael, and bring back wives.
And I will tell you that's one of my favorite stories. :D  Can't wait to tell it next Tuesday!

Fare thee well, friend!

Saturday, October 12, 2013

Internet's Back - Officially Now

Guess what, everyone?  Remember that big storm I told you about?  The one that flooded the library (sort of)?  Well, it kind of knocked the internet out at my apartment... and it hasn't been on since.  Ash, my new roomie, actually ended up having to make her phone a hot-spot so we could work done (many thanks to her for that!).
After bugging the office for ages, they finally told us to just call the internet company, which Kay did Wednesday, and yesterday THEY FIXED OUR INTERNET!!!!
Can I just say how unbelievably relaxing it is not to have to worry about when you'll actually be able to get online for school?
Oh, and for those of you waiting for the end of Nephi's story, I've decided to do those once a week, so I guess you'll see what happens on Tuesday. ;)

Fare thee well, friend!

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Stories: Nephi and the Brass Plates

So, I had a thought over the weekend.  I personally love hearing stories from other people's religions.  I think they're fascinating.  So I decided I would love to share stories from my own religion.  For those of you who don't know, I belong to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints.  We are Christians, we believe in the Bible, but we also believe in continuing revelation, and that God speaks to all His people.  The book that gave us our nickname, The Book of Mormon, is a record of God's people in the Americas.  I'd like to share the story of their founding: the story of Nephi and the Brass Plates.
The Book of Mormon begins around 600 B.C., just before Jerusalem is destroyed by the Babylonians.  At that time there were many prophets warning about the city's destruction.  One of these men was named Lehi.  The people were angry with him because he told them they were sinning, and they decided to kill him.  Lehi was warned in a dream to take his family out of Jerusalem before they were all murdered, so he, his wife, and his children packed the essentials and fled into the wilderness.  Lehi's family included him, his wife Sariah, and four sons: Laman, Lemuel, Sam, and Nephi (there is some speculation that there were daughters as well, but they were never specified).  Laman and Lemuel were furious about having to leave their home, their birthrights, and their wealth (Lehi was a very wealthy man).  They blamed their father for all their hardships in the wilderness.  Nephi, on the other hand, decided to ask God if what his father had done was right.  When he prayed he received a revelation telling him that his father was right, and that because Nephi was humbler than his brothers, he was called to be a ruler over them in the land God was leading them to.  God also warned Nephi that unless Laman and Lemuel would soften their hearts and humble themselves, they would be cut off.
When Nephi returned to his father after praying, Lehi told him God had spoken to him again in a vision, telling him his sons needed to go back to Jerusalem to retrieve the brass plates.  These plates were not only a collection of the books of Moses, which they would need to teach their children, but they also included a record of Lehi's ancestry.  Laman and Lemuel complained that their father had given them a hard task, but Nephi knew it hadn't come from their father, but from God, and that God never gives His children commandments that they can't keep.  They traveled back to Jerusalem and drew lots to see who would go to visit Laban, the man who currently had the plates.  The lot fell to Laman.  When he asked Laban for the plates, however, Laban called him a thief, threw him out of his house, and sent his servants to kill him.  Laman escaped, came back to his brothers, and said, "Well, that didn't work, time to go!"  Nephi, however, wasn't quite as willing to give up yet.  They'd tried just asking, that hadn't worked, but as I mentioned before, Lehi was a wealthy man, and he had left all his possessions in Jerusalem before he left.  They went back to their home, gathered their wealth, and went back to Laban and offered to trade all their property for the brass plates.
Well, Laban was a wicked man.  He saw their property and coveted it, but he wasn't about to give up the brass plates.  Instead he told his servants to kill them, and when they fled, he took their property for himself.  Now not only had he tried to kill them for no reason, he had stolen their property.  The four brothers hid in a cave outside the city, and Laman and Lemuel were so angry they found a rod and began to beat Nephi, and then Sam.
Then an angel appeared.  He chewed Laman and Lemuel out for a) not believing their father and their brother, b) complaining about their task, and c) beating their brothers.  Basically, he warned them that if they didn't shape up, they were going to be cut off from the presence of God.  When he left, Laman and Lemuel stopped beating Nephi, but they still complained about how hard their task was.  Nephi decided to go alone into Jerusalem to get the brass plates himself.

Well, unfortunately, I have to run to class now, so I guess I'll finish the story in my next post!

Fare thee well, friend!

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Still Open

I have a dance exam coming up on Thursday, and I really needed to get dancing shoes.  Problem: no freaking time.  I'm either at school from 8-6, or at work from 9-5.  No real time to drop by a shoe store.  And besides that, I had no idea where I could find a dance store.  I had a couple friends that told me what street to look on, but... well, let's just say I get lost really easily.  Still, I really needed these shoes, and if it was along one street, there shouldn't be too much of a problem, right?  So I planned to grab shoes today after school.
Of course, life struck.  I left my jacket in my dance class, so I had to drop by my teacher's class to get it.  Then one of my friends asked me to drive her home, and I couldn't say no, could I?  So by the time I got on the road again, it was about 6:30, and I still had to find the store.  Finally I spotted it, and I could have sung for joy.  I pulled in, and then I got a look at the times.  Open 10-6 Monday through Friday.
Still, the lights were on, and when I checked the door, it was unlocked, and I poked my head in.  A woman came from the back room and asked if I was here for the shoe fitting.
Me:  "Uh, no, but I am here to buy shoes."
I guess she'd specifically left the store open late for someone that hadn't shown up yet.  She was very kind and got me a pair of shoes, and I went on my merry way with a grateful prayer.

Fare thee well, friend!

Thursday, September 26, 2013

Reflections of Rain

Where I live, it's usually really dry.  Hot and dry in the summer, cold and dry in the winter.  We hardly ever see rain.  This year has been remarkably different.  It's rained nearly every day for a month, and those of us that love storms are ecstatic.  As I was walking from the testing center to the library today, feeling the rain kiss the top of my head, I had the chance to think about just what it was I love about rain.
For one thing, once it starts raining, everything goes quiet.  The usual rush of the day is muffled; people go inside, and for once everything is peaceful.  For another thing, once you get over the little bit of cold it brings, the water catching in your hair and dotting your shoulders can be one of the most relaxing things in the world.  Rain has a way of getting under my skin and sapping out all my tension.  And then there's the smell.  It's like there's something beautiful and otherworldly just hanging in the air, waiting to see who can find it.  I always feel closer to God after walking in the rain.  I think it's a feeling I'll never get tired of.

Fare thee well, friend!

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Mad Five-Hour Dash

Hello!  Wow, um, that was kinda the craziest couple days of my life.  I was writing on Saturday, and I looked at where I was and realized, "Hey, if I do nothing else all day, I might just end up finishing this!"  Guess what I did?
I went shopping for a costume for an upcoming Renaissance Fair. ;)  Then I went to my weekend job (cleaning the bathrooms in my Dad's office).  Then I went to Panda Express, got home and camped out on my couch for five hours as I desperately tried to finish my revision.  And I was successful!  I would have jigged if not for the fact that it was midnight and I needed to get to bed so I would be awake in church the next day. ;)
Now for the really difficult part: other people's criticism.

Fare thee well, friend!

Friday, September 20, 2013

The First Mishap

Well, I knew something like this would happen.  I mean, honestly, trying to stick me, an uncoordinated young woman with bad ankles, in an Irish Dance class?  What was I thinking?
Okay, I'm just teasing, it's not that bad.  I still love Irish Dance.  However, I am also still uncoordinated with bad ankles.  Which leads to where I am now, with an ice-cold water bottle against my foot.
See, when it comes to Irish dancing, you're supposed to keep your feet crossed at all times.  Unless, you know, you're kicking or something.  Basically, your feet are constantly passing each other in fairly close proximity to each other.  And I kinda mashed my own foot.
It wasn't too bad, or so I thought.  All I did was step on my own foot.  But then the next day it was still hurting.  I think I may have bruised it.  Needless to say, going back to class was interesting.
My thoughts: "'Kay, remember to stay on your toesNOPE THAT'S NOT HAPPENING!"
How do I keep doing this to myself?

Fare thee well, friend!

Thursday, September 19, 2013

I Liiiiiiiiive!

Yes, I am quoting Mushu.
I'm back!  Yes, Internet at my apartment is still being dumb.  Hence I'm writing quickly at school before class starts/my computer runs out of battery because I couldn't find a nearby cord.  Not much going on, just settling into the swing of school (another reason I haven't posted in a while.  Homework eats your time like nothing else!).  I am actually enjoying classes, though.  Irish Dance isn't as hard as I thought it would be, now that I actually know which foot to start on and the difference between a skip and a leap. :)  Hopefully I'll be posting more regularly now, but I am still having issues, so we'll see where that goes.
Oh, and guys, remember that Swan Prince book I was going on about a little while back?  Well, the sequel, The Stone Kingdom, is coming out tomorrow on Amazon!  You should go check it out!  Seriously, this is something you need to read.  These books are amazing!

Fare thee well, friend!

Saturday, September 14, 2013


So, for those of you who don't know, I am a huge fan of Shannon Hale.  Therefore, I was super-excited when I found out they were making her novel Austenland into a movie.  However, it was only going to be showing in "select theatres," which I figured meant only in big cities... and since I'm in a relatively small town, I figured I wouldn't be able to see it until it came out on DVD.
You can already guess where is this is going, can't you?
Yesterday I got a call from my mom, who asked if I was interested in seeing Austenland with her this weekend.  I was soooo excited!  Saw it last night.  My thoughts:
If I hadn't been sitting, I would have swooned.  Like, seriously, can you say "oh my horde of attractive men!!!"?  Martin was just soooo cute, and Nobly was sooooo darling, and... and...
Oh, you want my opinion of the movie, not just the men?
The movie itself was great!  I loved the protagonist, and Mom and I were both laughing nearly all the way through!  Jennifer Coolidge was the perfect choice for Miss Charming, and the romance... well, if I bring that up I'll get on the subject of hot men again, so I'll let you see it yourself.  Seriously, this is one of the best feel-good movies I have ever seen, right up there with Penelope.  I highly suggest viewing this marvelous movie!  I mean it, go watch it!  Find a Cinemark (which is apparently the theatre chain that's showing it).  Be prepared to laugh.

Fare thee well, friend!

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

No Internet... Again

Well, turns out that giant storm we had kinda knocked out the internet at my apartment... again.  What's worse is that not only do a bunch of college students not have internet, it went out over the weekend, so management didn't know about it until yesterday... and supposedly it won't be fixed for a couple days.  Which means I'll be coming to school really early, and hanging out at the fencing arena a lot (they have great internet!).  In any case, if I don't post again for a few days, blame either homework or lousy internet.

Fare thee well, friend!

Saturday, September 7, 2013

The Tempest

Wow.  Seriously, like, wow. 
I was in the library, volunteering, and I was in the children's section upstairs (they call it the Junior Mezzanine).  The shelving process generally involves taking the books on a cart and sorting them alphabetically, unless someone has already come along and done that bit for you.  The spot I usually alphabetize in is right in front of one of the big windows.  Well, I'm looking outside, and suddenly I notice just how fast the clouds are moving.  I was enthralled.  I love a strong wind!  Then it started raining, and I was elated!  We don't get nearly enough rain here.  And then... it started raining harder.  Within a few minutes it looked like it was night outside, and the rain was coming down in sheets!  It was amazing!  That was when I stood up to start putting the books away, and realized there was water coming in from the window.
Now, these are floor-to-ceiling windows, so the water was soaking the carpet.  I went to tell one of the librarians about it, but when I got there, she was already scrambling to move the computers out of the way of a drip coming from the ceiling. :P  Luckily none of the books were hurt, but apparently whenever one of the city buildings has a problem, they have to call the fire department or something like that (I only caught snippets of the conversation).  In any case, when I left there was a fire truck waiting outside, though for what I'm not entirely sure.  But I realized something about the rain here.
It always rains when I wear sandals to the library... which means I get to slosh through the parking lot in semi-bare feet.

Fare thee well, friend!

Friday, September 6, 2013


They're out to get me. 
Seriously, if I haven't lost at least ten pounds by the time this semester ends, I will never, ever be able to lose any weight.  I start my Irish Dance class with a ten-minute core work-out, then of course I'm dancing on my toes for about half an hour, and then I have to hike up and down several staircases to get to my next class within ten minutes, and then... I have fencing.
I really didn't want to get out of bed today.

Fare thee well, friend!

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

First Day Back

And I am so tired.
Okay, run-down of school this year: all classes on Tuesday and Thursday, starting at eight am and ending at six pm.  Class I'm most worried about: Irish Dancing, mostly because I suck at dancing, but this is always something I've wanted to learn, so I'll see how it goes.  Class I think will be the most fun: Welsh!  The professor is just awesome, and guess what?  He's a fencer!  And not just any fencer, he's a leftie!  And one of my best friends from high school just so happens to be in the class with me!
Yeah.  Welsh is gonna be cool. :)

Fare thee well, friend!

Sunday, September 1, 2013

Help, I'm Stuck on Your Car!

So, last night I was sitting, playing around on my computer, when I get a text: a picture of something with big eyes and lots of darkness, and the words, "Help, I'm stuck to your car!"
I knew exactly what it was. 
See, my friend Sarnic frequently leaves things in Kay's car (as she is her sister, and all), and I mean, she is the one that texted me.
I think I'm rambling.  In any case, I dashed outside to find whatever she may have done to my car... only to discover nothing.  Confused, I decided to see if her car was still in visitor parking, and on my way, I discovered a little stuffed owl on Kay's car.  Mayhaps she had texted the wrong person?  In any case, I continued, and discovered that yes, her car WAS in visitor parking... and she was not there.  However, there was another owl.  I picked it up (and really hoped no one was watching me, because if they were, they were going to think I was nuts) and thought perhaps she'd snuck back up to my apartment while I was outside, so back I went. 
The moment I walked in the door, Kay holds out my phone and says, "I think you need this," (I'd run off without it in my excitement).  I'd gotten another text saying there were three owls, and one of them was on Ash's care (my new roomie).  Her car basically looks exactly like mine.  We decided the way to tell them apart was that I have a shark hanging from my rearview mirror, and she has flowers.
But I digress. 
We found the one on Ash's car easily enough, but there was still no Sarnic.  We were wondering just what we should do, when Kay mentioned she was cold and wanted to grab a jacket.  Said her wet hair was making her chilly.  Well, A) I had just gotten out of the shower, so my hair was definitely wetter, and I felt fine, and B) If we left, Sarnic might get away!!!!  But then I got suspicious.
"Hey, Kay, did you leave the door unlocked?"
"Why yes I did!"
Yes, I am aware I thought of this before, but I hadn't found all the owls yet, so obviously she couldn't reveal herself yet.
We dashed into the apartment, and there sat Sarnic with the biggest owl yet, and a smile even bigger.  We laughed and exchanged greetings, and then I turned to Kay with the accusatory pointer finger.  "You were in on it, weren't you?"
Turns out Sarnic HAD come up the first time, but didn't want me to know until I'd found all the owls, and then I came up early, so she hid while Kay distracted me with my phone.  And the whole "I'm cold let's get a sweater" thing?  Yeah, that was just to get us back inside. ;)
So I now have two owls named Annabelle and Petunia.  :D

Fare thee well, friend!

Saturday, August 31, 2013

Blind Date: Afterwards

So.  Much.  Fun!  Like seriously, it was awesome!  We went to a fun center/arcade, and played mini-golf and had dippn' dots (some of us for the first time) and we played laser tag, and then we had a really, really late dinner at Ihop, and by the time we finished, we realized it was about one in the morning.  Oops.
As for the date himself, he was great!  An utter gentleman (something hard to find in this day and age), and he just made me feel so relaxed.  I could be myself.  It was so refreshing!
So yep.  First date since junior year went well.  I'm no longer terrified of dating!

Fare thee well, friend!

Friday, August 30, 2013

Blind Date

So... I haven't dated since my junior year of high school.  That's a long time (okay, not that long, but still).  And tonight... I've got a blind date.
Never been on a blind date... haven't dated since high school...
We'll see how this goes, shall we?

Fare thee well, friend!

Thursday, August 29, 2013

An Explanation

It has recently occurred to me that I might want to explain my farewell.  (As in, fare thee well, friend!)  Since, you know, we don't really use "thee" and "thou" anymore.  Unless you're me and you're bored, but that's beside the point.
See, my dad is huge into the Bar J Wranglers.  They're... um, I'm not actually sure if they would be considered grassroots or country (I don't really know the difference).  In any case, they perform a song called "In That Great Gettin' Up Morning," and the most repeated line in the song is "fare thee well."  It kinda got stuck in my head, and then I started saying it when I said goodbye to people.  Of course, it could only be when I said goodbye to friends, because other people would just think I was crazy, so of course I just added on "friend."  And since I say it so often, it only makes sense it would be the way I end blog posts!
So, until we meet again,

Fare thee well, friend!

Wednesday, August 28, 2013


Revisions are so much easier than rough drafts.  Like, seriously, they are marvelous!  I love going in and seeing how I can make the story deeper, seeing what details I need to add or change, and I love watching the characters grow up again.  Of course, there are problems too, like wanting to let everyone read it right now but knowing it's not ready yet, but I'll get there soon! 
Overall, I'm feeling very accomplished. :)

Fare thee well, friend!

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

One More Week

One more week before it's back to school.  Honestly, not sure whether to be disappointed or excited by this.  On the one hand, I've really enjoyed having a nice, relaxing summer where I didn't have to deal with homework.  On the other hand, I'm taking classes on both Irish Dancing and the Welsh language, two things I've wanted to learn for YEARS!!!  This is also my first semester away from home, as well as the first of not taking the bus (seeing as I wasn't entirely willing to shell out $200 for a student pass again).  Sigh, such is the life of a college student. 

Fare thee well, friend!

Friday, August 23, 2013

Dragon Mania

Heh heh... so, there's this awesome app called My Dragon...
Daaaaaaaw!!!!!!!!  Sooooooo cuuuuuuuuuute!
The idea is that you take care of the king's dragons, and they're so cute, you pet them and their tongues hang out like Elliot from Pete's Dragon, and you can dress them up, and go on quests where they try to act creepy but only end up looking adorable...
I really need to stop looking at these.

Fare thee well, friend!

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Character Bible

So Kay has had this really interesting way of getting to know her characters.  She calls it a character bible.  She has all these pictures that look like/symbolize/remind her of her characters, and they're all pasted/taped into a notebook.  For me, it's fun to look through it because she has some serious artistic talents.  I finally decided to make my own, and slowly started gathering pictures.  Well, today I finally printed them off (read I gave Kay my USB because she's the only one that can work the printer), and I put together the beginning of my character bible!
It's actually incredibly helpful.  It makes the characters easier to imagine, and it actually gives me ideas for certain details I wasn't sure of before (like where one of my more mysterious characters hails from).  Not to mention it makes me feel all important because I have visuals of my novel. ;)

Fare thee well, friend!

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Sleepy Hollow

So after hearing my new roomie talk about it (more on that after she gets back from Hawaii, the lucky duck), I decided to look up this new tv show coming out in September called Sleepy Hollow  Here's the trailer:
Here's my summary of the premise:  Ichabod Crane, a soldier during the revolutionary war, is awakened 250 after defeating the Headless Horseman.  Now, the Horseman has returned to terrorize the town of Sleepy Hollow again, and only Ichabod can find the answers to defeat him once and for all.
My take on the show:  I think it looks really intense, and I can't wait to see the interaction between Ichabod and the police woman (never did catch her name).  One problem is that it does look pretty violent, but I suppose that's to be expected from a retelling of the Legend of Sleepy Hollow.  It looks like there will be more intense searching than actual chopping people's heads off, though, so that's definitely a plus.  I guess I'll just have to see the first episode and decide whether I like it there. ;)
Btw, if anyone happens to have a review for BBC's Robin Hood as well, I'd appreciate it.

Fare thee well, friend!

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Part Time!!!

So, with school starting, I've finally gone from full-time back to part-time at work, and let me tell you: it's AMAZING!!!  I actually have time to take care of my apartment and get things done and write and revise and spend actual time with people and it's AWESOME!!!
Seriously, I would never be able to make a career out of something that required I sit behind a desk all day.  There's just too much to do elsewhere!  Thing is, I enjoy doing the dishes and keeping the living space clean (though you'd never guess it from my bedroom) and doing the kind of housewifey things that I'm sure offend many other women.  But isn't the point of the feminist movement not to make women more like men, but to give women the same opportunity to pursue their happiness?
My happiness is in the home. :)

Fare thee well, friend!

Monday, August 19, 2013

One Draft Down

Soo... guess what budding novelist finished the first draft of her second novel over the weekend?!
Seriously, if I actually knew how to jig, I would be jigging all around the apartment.  Can't decide if it's a good thing or a bad thing I'm taking an Irish dance class in light of that...
In any case, IT'S DONE!!!  And honestly, the most exciting part about it is that now that it IS done, I know how I need to fix it and what needs to be done.  Seriously, why are the rough drafts always the hardest?
Now I move on to step two: major revision. ;)  Hopefully this next draft will go a little smoother.

Fare thee well, friend!

Sunday, August 18, 2013

A Good Samaritan

Well, yesterday was an adventure.  Kay, Mia, and I were going to see a play, and it was Kay's turn to drive, so off we went.  Well, we had to take the freeway, and just before we got on, Mia mentioned she thought Kay's car was sounding funny.  Well, Kay and I had noticed it before, but it had definitely gotten worse.  We hoped we could make it, but after we got on the freeway it was louder and a lot scarier.  After a bit of panic Kay realized our apartment was just off the next exit, so we pulled off and headed there, hoping to snag my car and get back on track.  Unfortunately, maybe half a mile from the apartment we had to pull over.  When we got out, the back tire was completely flat. 
Well, Kay borrowed one of my hair ties (I was wearing braided pigtails, so I had extra), and she set to work trying to change the tire.  Only, we couldn't get the blasted car jack out of the trunk.  Someone had stuck it in way too tight.  And all the while all these people were driving by, not caring about three girls on the side of the road trying to change a tire.
Until someone did stop.  Mia noticed him first (mostly because Kay and I were bent over the trunk trying to pry the jack out).  He actually pulled over in front of us, then popped out and asked if we needed a hand.  Not ten minutes later, the tire was changed, our faith in humanity was restored, and we even made it to the play on time! 
So a million thanks to the Good Samaritan, and a million blessings to go with them!

Fare thee well, friend!

Friday, August 16, 2013

Random Phone Calls

Y'know, I'm actually not supposed to answer the phones at work.  However, I do have a phone at my desk, and occasionally clients ask for me specifically.  So if it rings at my desk, I answer.
I don't know how these people are getting this number.
I get back from lunch and as I sit at the desk, the phone rings.  I roll my eyes, expecting someone complaining, and instead I get, "Hi, this is so-and-so, may I speak to the president?"  My thoughts: Um, you want to speak to the president, but you're speaking to me, which means you didn't go through our receptionist.  How did you get this number?  Of course, I didn't say that.  What I said was: "Why are you calling?"
Him: "It's personal."
O.O  Well okay then.  So I put him on hold and call up the president: "Hey, this guy is calling to see you?"
Pres: "Ugh, I know what he's calling about.  Tell him I'm not interested."
O.O  Okay then.  Take the guy off hold: "He's... not interested?"
"Oh, okay.  Bye!"  Hangs up.
My thoughts: Okay, that was weird.
Not thirty seconds later I get another phone call.  My thoughts: Oh, please don't tell me he's calling back!  I pick up the phone, and I hear a recorded voice saying, "Hi, this is such and such.  It looks like we missed you, so give us a call at..."  My thoughts: Is... is this an answering machine?  Did I just get called by an answering machine?!
Apparently so.  I hung up, laughed about it with coworkers, and went back to work.
Five minutes later.
Phone rings, and I'm starting to get exasperated.  I pick up: "Hi, this is this and that home insurance company, how are you?"
"Uh... fine?"  My thoughts:  You guys know you just called a business, right?
And so they continue, "We highly recommend you buy this home insurance company, because..."
"I don't own a home."
"Oh, you don't?  Oh, well, uh, we're sorry for taking up your time.  Have a nice day!"
And just to top off the weirdness, maybe fifteen minutes later, the blasted thing rang again, and when I picked up, there was no one on the other end.

Fare thee well, friend!

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Don't Knock With That Hand

There I was.  Trying desperately to keep my points up for the team bout.  My opponent's sword comes flying at me... I move to parry...
In other words, lunge+bad parry=a very painful hit.  And when that hit is on your finger... yeah.  Pain.  I tried to shake it off and keep fencing, but I lost the bout anyway.  When I finally pulled the glove off, guess what joyous red liquid I found?  I suppose I wasn't bleeding, per se, but the hit was hard enough that skin broke.  Now I have a lovely purple circle on my knuckle, which has made me realize something: I use that knuckle more than I thought.  For example, when I went to my piano lesson with Kar, I strolled up to the door, admiring the work that had been done in the yard earlier (seriously, it looked great), and without really thinking of anything in particular, I knocked on the door.
At which point I started thinking, "Idiot, WHY would knock with that hand?!"
Yeah.  Interesting week.
In happier news, the sequel to The Swan Prince is coming out soon, and I'm so excited!  Titled The Stone Kingdom, it looks to be even better than the first, which is saying something, because The Swan Prince was a truly enjoyable read.  You can learn more about the sequel at https://everonword.wordpress.com/

Fare thee well, friend!

Monday, August 12, 2013

Who Designed This?!

The city where I attend school and the city where I live look like they're the same place... but they're actually two separate cities built practically on top of each other.  There are, however, a few sure-fire ways I've noticed to actually tell them apart.  The first is that in the city where I live, the buildings are much newer.  Seeing as the city is newer, that does make sense.  The city where I live is a bit higher, as well.  Once you start heading down, you can tell you're heading to college town.
The easiest way is road design.
Seriously, I don't know who designed the roads in my college city, but it's RIDICULOUS!  Which is actually a shame, because most of it is really nice.  But honestly!  Everything is so tight, and you can't see any signs because there are trees and other obstructions everywhere, and suddenly you're supposed to be going a lot faster in areas that are a lot narrower and... and...
I think I'm getting another bus pass this year. :P

Fare thee well, friend!

Saturday, August 10, 2013


Haha, I can get online today! 
Well, last night was a bittersweet moment, for we bid farewell to one of our fencers.  He's heading up north for college, and will therefore no longer to able to visit our lovely Center during the school year.  Lame.  But on the positive side, goodbye party means food, and movies, and friends!  We ordered pizza, (as usual), and Mia made brownies (which makes her an angel, because not only are her brownies amazing, she just had jaw surgery and has had to have her mouth wired shut, which means she couldn't partake in her brownies herself), and Mace brought doughnuts!  And then we watched Tangled.  I think that has to be Disney's greatest princess movie, if only because it appeals to both boys and girls. :)
Best moment of the night?  Coach asked if anyone wanted to bless the food, and Kay piped up, "I volunteer as tribute!"
Then Aron chimes in, "I volunteer to take her place!"
Of course we all laughed about it, and Coach joked that they should fight for it, at which point Kay pointed out that she had beaten Aron during fencing, which meant she won.  She went to start the prayer.  We all had our arms folded and our eyes closed.  And suddenly, instead of the opening to the prayer, we hear "En guarde..."  We lost it again.  ;)
Yep.  Fun times.  Love me my fencing friends!

Fare thee well, friend!

Friday, August 9, 2013

Not My Fault!

Ha!  It's not my fault I haven't been posting this time!  The internet at my apartment is being dumb again.  Basically, don't expect a post every day for a little while, because until said issues with the internet are fixed, posts will be spotty. 
In any case.
Hi!  Sorry, I've been staying up late playing Betrayal all week.  Like, two in the morning late.  But it's totally worth it!  Kay and I started using our book characters (since we're the only two in the apartment at the moment and it's hard to play with just two people), and OH MY FUN!!!!  Last night we ended up playing with our villains AND our heroes, which made the haunt really interesting because in the end they were all fighting each other trying to get what they wanted.  :D
Well, thanks for keeping up, I know I've been a bit AWOL as of late.  Hopefully I'll be able to post regularly soon, and I'll let you know when that happens.

Fare thee well, friend!

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

I Am Number Four

So, Kay has been telling me for weeks I should read I Am Number Four by Pittacus Lore.  Well, a few weeks ago I finally picked it up... and I was up past two most nights reading it.
Yep.  That compelling.  John is just fun to read about.  Great kid.  And then, of course, I picked up the second, The Power of Six, and had to race to finish it last night before my little brother went on a rampage to read it before me.  Hey, not my fault if I don't have a big enough chunk of time to read faster than him!
So, moral of the story: read it, but make sure you've got a decent amount of time to spend doing so.  Otherwise you might be surprised how much time is gone.

Fare thee well, friend!

Monday, August 5, 2013


Ai!  Again, I am so sorry I've missed the past couple days.  They've been pretty rough on me, and I haven't had time to get online.  It doesn't help that I got some bad news Saturday night: you remember that anthology I had been waiting of FOREVER?  Well, Saturday I got an email from them saying that while they enjoyed my piece and liked my writing style, they had decided to say no to my story. :(  And then of course, yesterday Kay and I had a dinner we were hosting, so we were making sure everything looked good.  So, I guess I'm saying sorry, and hopefully I'll have a bit more time on my hands from now on.  Thanks to those of you who have stayed with me through all of this insanity!

Fare thee well, friend!

Friday, August 2, 2013

One Man Disney

I think this video speaks for itself.  It makes me laugh and I've had a rough day, so I'm posting it. :)  Enjoy! (Best part is watching the villain's reaction to everything.  Highly amusing.).
Fare thee well, friend!

Thursday, August 1, 2013

More Time

I wish I had it.  There's just so much I want/need to do, and so little time to do it in!  This is probably the reason I keep staying up so late...
I just, I wanna write, and I wanna (sort of) work (so I can has monies), and I wanna spend time with friends, and I want to help people... and often, there's just not enough time to do it all.  I suppose that's why we're supposed to learn to prioritize, huh?
So, any time management tips?

Fare thee well, friend!

Wednesday, July 31, 2013


I have got to stop staying up late.  Seriously, this is getting out of hand.  But... I just really wanted to write!  I think I'm going to need to start setting time apart to actually get writing done, otherwise I'm going to drive myself insane.  It just feels like some days I have so many things going on that writing just gets shoved to the side.  And then I get cranky because I love writing, and I don't want to give it up because everyone else wants me to do something else.  Which means I end up staying up too late to do it.
Which makes me sleepy.

Fare thee well, friend!

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Back From Vacation

Hello all, sorry I went AWOL there for a few days, but it was a bit difficult to blog while flying/recovering from vacation.  I have to say, it's really nice to be home.  I mean, I love traveling, but I could have died from happiness when I was back in my own bed.  :) 
So, I'm back, and hopefully things will be a bit easier now.  Thanks for being patient with me!  You have no idea how happy it made me to see that people were still interested in this even after I stopped posting for a bit!

Fare thee well, friend!

Saturday, July 27, 2013

Winding Down

Well, didn't do much today.  Just winding down before we head back home tomorrow.  And unfortunately, I discovered that after three days of hard walking/traveling, an easy day can make me a little cranky.  I hope I just didn't upset people too much.  Sorry to everybody.  But hopefully tomorrow will be easier.  And I'll be heading home!  As much as I love vacations, I really do love being at home.

Fare thee well, friend!

Friday, July 26, 2013


Whew, I thought I was tired yesterday.  On the one hand, I think  walked off all the carbs from the French restaurant we ate at.  On the other, my bum ankle is complaining bitterly.  Ah well.  Speaking of the French restaurant, funniest moment of the day was when a group of local college girls walked into the restaurant, and the trio of waiters at the entrance all turned their heads when they walked in and watched them while they got seated.  They looked like a bunch of dogs.
Honestly, I think the funnest part of the parks is talking with the workers.  They're so friendly and talkative, and it's fun to learn where the all come from, especially in Epcot's World Showcase.  Apparently everyone who works in the different countries come from the actual countries themselves.  All in all it was a pretty fun day.
Even if I am exhausted and my feet are aching. ;)

Fare thee well, friend!