Saturday, December 29, 2018

Wrapping Up 2018-Welcoming 2019...


Greetings, all!


ONLY TWO MORE DAYS UNTIL 2019!!! CAN YOU BELIEVE IT? 


It seems like only a few months ago that I was writing a wrap-up post for 2017. Strange how time flies the older you get. What will it be like when we’re grandparents, I wonder? We’ll blink, and it will be the new year. 




I had a challenging year, I will admit. Not my hardest, certainly; but it was a tough one. I was told we were moving at the end of last year; then in June we put our house on the market and had moved into our new house by August. Then my dad quit his job and started seminary, and I entered my junior year in high school. All of those changes happened within four months. It was crazy, but good kind of crazy. XD

And now it’s time to reminisce about the past… 



Big Events of 2018

Braces-Yup, joined the ranks of teenagers with braces. It’s been great fun so far. *nods seriously*

Sweet Sixteen-I turned 16 this year! Funny, though…doesn’t feel much different than being 15…or 14, for that matter. XD

Moving-Already talked about this one. XP I must say though, I do like our new house. It’s only a five-minute walk (or less, if you speed walk) to the library. :-D 


Family Camping Trip-Which you can read about here, if you didn’t already. We took our first big camping trip as a family this year and hit places like the Grand Canyon, Salt Lake City, and Mesa Verde. It was AWESOME.  

Kung Fu-At the beginning of this year my brother and I were yellow belts in Kung Fu. Now, we are green belt stripe. Which, if you don’t know what that means, is half-way to a black belt!!! I am hoping to be a black belt by the time I’m 18. Let’s see what happens!!!

Stories Discovered in 2018

I read a whopping total of 79 books this year, and am very unhappy that I couldn’t make it to 80. Well, I have two days left; we’ll see if I can make it through another before midnight on the 31st. XD

This year I was introduced to some amazing books and movies, including (but not limited to)

M. Night Shyamalan Movies

(The Sixth Sense, The Village, Signs, Lady in the Water, After Earth, The Last Airbender)

The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins (books and movies) 

Ranger’s Apprentice by John Flanagan

BBC’s SHERLOCK

Fawkes by Nadine Brandes 

H.G. Wells Science Fiction

(War of the Worlds, The Invisible Man, The Island of Doctor Moreau, When the Sleeper Wakes)

The Rithamist by Brandon Sanderson

Dracula by Bram Stoker

(not a story but still amazing) Mere Christianity by C.S. Lewis

Solo: A Star Wars Story



AND, we must not forget to give a eulogy to the movie that broke Marvel fan’s hearts. 


Music Listened to in 2018

Here is the link to my end of the year Spotify playlist. It has a good smattering of songs from some of the genres and artists I listened to. 

Your Top Songs 2018

There were a couple of songs that really resonated with me this year; and I listened to them a lot.

Brave covered by Peter Hollens

My Immortal by Evanescence

We Will Not Go Quietly by Epic Score

Whatever it Takes by Imagine Dragons

Wanderer’s Lullaby by Adriana Figueroa

Star Sky by Two Steps from Hell

Rewrite the Stars, This is Me, and The Greatest Show from the Greatest Showman Soundtrack

Friend, Please by Twenty-One Pilots

Burn the Ships by for King and Country

Lost Boy by Ruth B.

You could say those songs made up my personal playlist for 2018. :-D

Written in 2018

The most exciting thing with writing that happened this year was that I finished my dystopian novella, Mission: Metal! I also started my pirate novel, Of Seas, Silver, and Shipmates, and began brainstorming my sci-fi novel…the name of which will be revealed in April of 2019…*winks* 



I participated in Camp Nano in July and NaNoWriMo in November (which I failed in devastatingly but it was fun anyway XD). I think I’m sort of getting the hang of this writing thing. Maybe…XD It’s been an awesome ride though.

Dreams for 2019

I’m desperately hoping to go One Year Adventure Novel’s Summer Workshop Writing Conference in June of 2019. I have about half of the funds necessary, and I already have a family member willing to go with me. We’ll see!!! 



Also, I’m hoping to have three novels written and ready to edit by the end of the year. Mission: Metal, OSSS, and the unnamed sci-fi novel. Now I have to go write this goal down somewhere and tape it to my computer screen so I’ll remember. XD

And lastly (this is kind of a stupid goal but whatever XD) I am determined to be able to do the full splits by the end of the year. We’ll see how that goes. XD


Now it’s your turn! What amazing stories did you discover this year? Did anything earth shattering happen to you in 2018? And what are some of your hopes and plans for 2019?



I honestly can’t wait for 2019. A fresh new year in which to dream, write, plan, hope, and possibly…have an adventure.

But isn’t life in itself an adventure? 

Happy New Year!!! 

Saturday, December 22, 2018

It's Christmas Time Again-Christmas Movies


Greetings, all!

Here is the last installment in my Christmas post series: Christmas Movies!

Christmas movies are among some of the most nostalgic and sweetest movies ever made. In our family we have a set ten or so movies that we start watching the day after Thanksgiving. Here are a few of our favorites.



Elf (2003)


A rollicking tale filled with laughter, syrup, Elves, family, and singing loud for all to hear. Buddy the Elf goes to New York city to find his father, and discovers that not all people share his optimistic view on life. PG

It’s a Wonderful Life (1946)


My personal favorite Christmas movie. <333 George Bailey is given a chance to see what the world would be like if he had never been born. PG 

The Ultimate Gift (2006) 


OH MY WORD I’m pretty sure this movie will make most people cry (it didn’t make me cry but then I don’t cry in movies XD). Jason is given a mysterious inheritance by his deceased grandfather. PG

The Star (2017)


An adorable retelling of the Nativity story from the perspective of Mary’s donkey, Boaz. PG

White Christmas (1953)


My mom’s favorite. XD A classic 50s musical with dance choreography, classic songs, and AMAZING dresses. G (though I would rate it PG)

Miracle on 34th Street (1994)


Kris Kringle has to prove his identity in court…and to a little girl. PG

 The Nativity Story (2006)


An amazing take on the wonderful tale of Jesus’ birth. (And GUYS it stars Oscar Isaac!!! (Poe Dameron in Star Wars: The Force Awakens XD). PG
Pete's Christmas (2013)
I honestly can't tell you too much about this movie because it will spoil the whole story. XD I will just tell you this much; Pete's a middle child, and he has the worst Christmas in his life-until his grandfather gifts him a mysterious box, and things are never quite the same...


What are some of your favorite Christmas movies? Have you seen any one the ones I mentioned? AND GUYS IT’S ONLY THREE DAYS TIL CHRISTMAS!!!



Namarie, and Merry Christmas!

Tuesday, December 18, 2018

It's Christmas Time Again: his story-a christmas story


Greetings, all!

Here is the second installment in my Christmas blog post series!

I wrote this Christmas story yesterday, and wanted to share it will you guys. I hope you enjoy it!

*


I hold her hand tight. Her dark eyes are fixed on mine; her other hand rests on her round stomach. Her breath comes in short gasps.
It is almost time.
Night is falling and the air is cool. White stars flicker in the darkening sky. The donkey snorts; it skirts a large rock with care, as if it knows how priceless its burden is-the one yet to be born.
The Son of God.
I can see the first of the buildings of my home town in the distance. A flicker of light shows in a window; some inhabitants are still awake. I urge our beast up a slight incline.
The pressure in my hand increases. I look up at my wife. Sweat drips from her forehead. “Joseph…”
I let go of her hand and lay mine on her cheek. “We’re almost there.” I pull the rope tied around the donkey’s neck and hasten forward.
Mary’s eyes close and she grips the lead rope so tight I can see the blue veins in her hand.
The donkey and I stumble onwards. Rocks spew in all directions, kicked up by our feet. Mary’s gasping breaths come faster now. I slide to a stop before the first house and pound on the door until I hear voices inside. An old man opens the door, his keen eyes glittering underneath heavy white brows. I nod my head in respect, and ask for the home of my relatives. He answers, pointing out a small collection of homes in the distance. I thank him and hurry on, conscious ever of Mary’s sighs of pain.
Why had Yahweh entrusted us with his Son? And why at this time? Surely He would have known we would be forced to return to our ancestral town for the census.
The donkey slips, nearly falling. Mary does not scream but grips my shoulder hard as I help the beast. We are nearing the homes.
The night sky above is now dotted with cold stars. One seems to grow larger the longer you look at it; its brilliance overshadows the others around it.
We reach the first of the buildings in the cluster of dwellings. My relatives’ is the third in the line, a small dark home with one window. My heart sinks as I help Mary off the donkey and up the steps to the door. There will not be enough room. I know that before the apologetic woman at the door finishes speaking. I plead with her nonetheless.
“There must be someplace you can put us!” I motion to Mary. “Her time is very near. We can not have the child on the street!”
Mary moans softly, her grip on my arm unbearably strong. I turn back to the woman. “Please!” I am shouting now.
A man’s face appears above the woman’s shoulder. “Put them in the stable,” he says. “They can not come in.”
I lift Mary in my arms and half run, half stagger to the rear of the house. A small hollow in the hill behind the building offers shelter to a motley assortment of sheep. I push my way through and clear a space for Mary, removing my outer cloak and laying it on the hard ground.
The kind woman from the house comes to the entrance of the small cave with some cloth and water. She hands them to me. “It’s the best I can do,” she says, then hurries back the way she came.
I look at the clothes she gave us. Rough material, such as they bury the dead in. Unfit, surely, to wrap the Prince of Peace in. But it is all we have.
The labor is long and painful. I pray for my wife and the child as Mary’s cries grow louder and more agonizing.
Near midnight, a baby’s cry splits the cold night air.
Exhausted, Mary hands Him to me after His first feeding. I wrap Him in the swaddling clothes and lay Him on the only available surface; the animals’ feeding trough. A manger for a King’s bed.
I sit next to my wife and take her hand in mine. She smiles at me. “Isn’t He beautiful?”
We stare at the Son of God. So small, so helpless. I do not understand why Yahweh would choose to send the Messiah in such a form, but I do know that for a short time it will be my burden to raise Him.
Our burden. I smile back at Mary. “He is perfect.”
And although I know the future is full of trials and darkness, for this one small moment, there is light and peace.
For God is with us. 

written by MiddleEarthMusician, December 17th, 2018. 
*



Did you like it? It’s my first entry into quasi-flash fiction writing, first person present POV, and nativity stories. I had a ton of fun writing it. :-D

Are you all excited about Christmas? It’s in exactly one week! Eeee!

Namarie, 

Saturday, December 8, 2018

It's Christmas Time Again: MUSIC


Greetings, all!



IT’S CHRISTMAS TIME AGAIN!!!

In celebration of Christmas this year, I am going to embark on a new series of blog posts!

Christmas MUSIC

Christmas MOVIES

And Christmas STORIES.



This week is Christmas MUSIC.

So let’s get started!!! :-D 


Hark the Herald Angels Sing…




Christmas music is some of the most nostalgic for me. Probably my favorite nostalgic Christmas song is  I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day by Casting Crowns


I love the message, the words, and the pathos turned into victory they implement in the music. Amazing.



Glory to the Newborn King!




One of our family’s favorite Christmas songs is the 12 Days of Christmas by Straight No Chaser


It’s pretty awesome. XD

 

Peace on Earth and Mercy Mild,




You can’t have a Christmas song list in our house without having a Pentatonix one included! This is one of my favs; Carol of the Bells. <3
Isn’t their acapella great!?



God and Sinners Reconciled!




And knowing me, you should have been expecting an instrumental Christmas song.

I give you two: Christmas Medley by Two Steps from Hell and Celtic Carol by Lindsey Stirling



And last but not least, my favorite Christmas song of all time.

Angels from the Realms of Glory by the Piano Guys

Isn’t that one just epic??? <333


Here’s my Spotify Christmas Playlist, if you want any more recommendations. XD 



What are some of your favorite Christmas songs? Do you prefer lyrical Christmas songs or instrumental? Are there any Christmas songs that are really nostalgic for you? :-D

Namarie! 

Saturday, December 1, 2018

Wrap Up November, HELLO DECEMBER!!!



Greetings, all! 


IT’S DECEMBER!!! IT’S TIME FOR CHRISTMAS AND PRETTY LIGHTS AND HOT CHOCOLATE (who am I kidding, I drink hot cocoa all year long XD) AND SNOW!!! At least, snow if you live in a place where it snows. Sorry, Australians; however, you’re welcome to some of our snow. Take as much as you need. XD

Unfortunately, before I can embark on the ship of Christmasy (totally a word) blog posts, I must give an overview of my November.

Rats.

I can’t even remember very much of my November.

Oh well, here we go. I apologize in advance for any absent-mindedness or craziness. I’m high on sugar.

My mood: 


Music Listened to in November



Burn the Ships by for King and Country


THIS SONG IS AMAZING.



When Jesus Saved the World by Efisio Cross

I love how this song conveys all the emotion of Jesus saving the world without any lyrics. <3



The Greatest Show covered by for King and Country 


I freaked out the first time I heard this song. Wow.



Carry on Wayward Son covered by Peter Hollens 


I’m not a fan of the rock guitar, but I love Peter’s voice in this song.

 

Movies Watched in November



Prince of Egypt 


(I love this movie. It still gives me shivers.)

 The Fellowship of the Ring


(We had our annual November LotR marathon! EEEEEEeeeEEE!) 

 The Two Towers


 The Return of the King


 The LEGO Movie

(EVERYTHING IS AWESOME!!!) 

Tangled 


 The Unexpected Journey



Books Read in November



Ranger’s Apprentice: The Siege at Macindaw by John Flanagan

Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins

Fawkes by Nadine Brandes <333

Ranger’s Apprentice: Erak’s Ransom by John Flanagan

Ranger’s Apprentice: The Kings of Clonmel by John Flanagan

Grace Abounding to the Chief of Sinners by John Bunyan (this book is SO. GOOD.)

Brotherband: The Outcasts by John Flanagan



Events that Happened in November


Kung Fu Show: My brother and I participated in our Dojo’s annual Kung Fu show! I performed two forms; a sword form and a fighting form. It was a great fun, and went much smoother that last year’s show. XD

NaNoWriMo: Welp, I did NaNoWriMo for the first time. I didn’t reach the 50k word goal (by a loooooong shot); but I did get really into my story and added a couple of chapters to it. And I had fun. XD Here are a few snippets for your enjoyment (excuse any typos; this is a very rough draft). 


*

So I remained in London, working quietly in a bakery, waiting for Colin to send word that it was safe. That word never came. The Revrend Jacobson sent a letter to me-along with a letter that was already addressed to me that he had found among Colin’s papers-telling me he had died.” She stopped talking. I looked up at her and was surprised to see tears glistening in her dark eyes.

“Why didn’t you come and see me then?” I asked.

Elani turned onto the main road that led away from the village. A watery beam of sunlight pushed its way through the thick fog and illuminated her strong features. “I couldn’t. I began to notice that unfriendly eyes tracking my every movement, and see signs that my home was being watched now as well. I determined to find out what excactly William had been up to, and what correlation these hostile visitors had to him and his buisness. And what I found out was not what I had hoped I would.”

The beam of sunlight gave up its weak resistance to the fog and died.

My heart beat in my chest as I asked the question, “What did you discover?”

“That William was still alive, and that he had murdered your father.”

*

We reached the next town by sundown. Along the way, we passed many other refugees, most of whom I recognized. Everyone was quiet; the fog seemed to cast a shadow over their spirits. When we entered the village’s first inn we were immediately turned away. The innkeeper, a thin flaxen haired man, shook his head when we asked where other lodging could be found.

“I don’t reckon you’ll find any,” he said. “As far as I know, all the inns in this town are full to the bursting. You could try a local farmer, I suppose. They usually have a barn or shed to spare.”

Wonderful. Another night spent in hay.

Elani thanked the innkeeper then turned to me as he shut the door. “I don’t want to draw too much attention to ourselves. Let’s go and try another inn on the other side of town before we ask for a night in a farmer’s outbuilding.”

I heartily agreed with her.



As it turned out, there was a room-if such a location can even be given such a respectable name-in one of the inns in the…well; more disreputable part of town. After we entered the dank, moldy eating room filled with refugees and shabbily dressed tradesmen, Elani accosted the innkeeper-this time a man with long black hair and missing an eye-to ask for a room. He gave her a bad-natured grunt.

“I’ve got a cellar room. Think that’ll do?” He shifted the large cask he held.

Elani tilted her head. “Yes. Price?”

He eyed her momentarily. “One night?”

She inclined her head again. “Yes.”

He tapped his finger on his leg. “1 shilling.”

Elani raised her eyebrow at him. “How good is the room?”

He snorted. “Woman, my rooms are as good as they come. Want it or not?”

She exhaled slowly. “We’ll take it.”

After being shown to the cellar room, which constisted of stone walls dripping with moisture and dirt floor covered with what appeared to be mouse droppings, I wondered if spending the night in a farmer’s shed would have been preferable. Elani paid the man-but didn’t thank him, I noticed-and then shut the door after him.

*
And I made some collages; the first one is for my mentor character Elani, and the second is for some backstory with Eden’s father, Elani, and a guy named William. *wink, wink* 


John Calvin Play: Every year my siblings and I participate in a Christian History Play. This year our play was about John Calvin, a French reformer. I got to play a couple of fairly prominent women parts, and I even got some lines and DID NOT FORGET THEM! It was one of our smoother plays too. :-D No one forgot any of their important lines, and there were no causalities. XD

Thanksgiving: I had a great Thanksgiving! Food, carols, performing House of Gold by TOP on my ukulele (AND NOT MESSING UP!), and watching Tangled with my family. What more could you ask for? XD



That was my month! Now, tell me about yours. Did you watch any good movies? Who else was in NaNo? How was your Thanksgiving?



ARE YOU EXCITED FOR CHRISTMAS TOO???

XD

Namarie!

People Like These Posts For Some Reason