Sunday, May 29, 2016

New Look + what is possibly the most random post I've ever written

What-ho, followers all!  (I am 99.9% positive I stole that exact phrase from Naomi.  Apologies about that, old sport.)

As you may have noticed, I have once again decided to destroy the status quo.  Yes, my dear readers, that is RIGHT!  I've changed my look again *cue groans of frustration*  I know, I know.  I do that far too often.  But hey, I waited almost two months this time around!  And I have a feeling this one will stick for awhile, because…guys I can't help it but I'm really in love with this update.  Obviously, the background is a bit *ahem* bolder than I normally go, and the point could be argued that the colors do not perfectly coincide with the header, but right now I don't even care.  I love how warm and bright it all is *happy sighs*  (Plus it's my first time experimenting with a gif as my profile picture, and I'm "liking it extremely."  MARIAN <3 <3 <3)  But what do YOU all think?  "Honestly, now.  Don't spare my feelings."  Though if you were to spare them a little, I wouldn't complain.  KIDDING, I'm kidding, I truly do want to know what you all think :D

Now, on to the possible-most-random-post-I've-ever-written part.  For some reason, and I truly have no idea why, the idea popped into my head to do a post about all the scents I enjoy.  (I know!  'Tis so random…)  So I've been thinking to myself, "what aromas do I like?"  And I've been compiling lists, and I am now going to bore you into oblivion with the results thereof.  Categorized, no less :P

"Right, here goes!"

~ The Floral/Nature Ones ~
// peonies // lavender // the smell of the air in autumn // freshly-mown grass // roses //  the smell of the outdoors after a spring rain, particularly in the evening // LILACS, my heavens // apple blossoms (I think.  It's been a long time since I've had the privilege of smelling apple blossoms, but for some reason I seem to remember I liked them.) // cedar wood // the ocean ("Oh!  The seaside!") // honeysuckle //

~ The Food/Drink Ones ~
// chocolate-chip cookies baking // ketchup // nectarines // bacon (though I don't eat it) // London Broil steak (though I don't eat it) // wine (though I don't drink it--OBVIOUSLY.  I'm a minor.  That'd be a huge problem.) // coffee (though I don't like it) // peaches // maple syrup // (why are all of these either sweet stuff or meat??) // DOMINO'S PIZZA // the smell of my grandmother's table at Thanksgiving *wink wink* //

~ The Random/Weird Ones ~
// chlorine // books (DUH) // the Lowe's department store // gasoline // perfume or cologne (well, yes, don't we all) // crayons // hotel rooms // hot glue (it smells like Christmas and I don't know why) // smoke, especially cigar or pipe smoke // certain articles of clothing I own :D // my dining room table ('tis wood) // laundry detergent // "the puppy smell", as my mom calls it, aka the scent of a young puppy's fur // paint // old VHS tapes // 

And now…we wait to see how long it takes me to remember a scent I meant to include, execute an elaborate facepalm, and then resolve to come back and edit this, but procrastinate so well that I may not ever actually do so.  Life is glamorous, peeps :D

Lastly, I leave you with a final picture:  there is Someone Who makes this life worth living, Someone Who deserves our every waking thought, Someone Who cannot even fully reveal Himself because our mortal bodies could not stand His glory, and yet this Someone walks side by side with us.  "Understands that we are dust." Forgives and redeems us. AND, as though all that were not far too much already, He showers us with blessings and priceless gifts in the everyday, if we open our eyes to it and to Him.  

Thursday, May 19, 2016

Red Carpet Eye Candy…{3}

It's been awhile since we had one of these, hasn't it? ;D  I hope you enjoy all these things of pretty!

Yes.  Me likey.  It's quite simple, yet dramatic, and I think the cut, color and styling are all very flattering to Heidi.  (Plus, I'm pretty sure it was designed by Zac Posen, and if you watch Project Runway, that'll just make you smile inside.)

How awesome is this?!  She looks like a butterfly, and in the best possible way.  As I've mentioned before, that more neutral peachy color is not often a favorite of mine, but sometimes a celebrity will pull it off perfectly.  This ensemble really fascinates me :)

This is legitimately adorable.  And I don't usually even like tea-length dresses for the red carpet.  It's so perky, but sweet and elegant at the same time.  I love the bodice, and how Anne mixed the golds and didn't necessarily match them.  

I'm not really all that used to patterned red carpet selections, but this is "really quite lovely."  The colors are all great for Michelle (aren't I cute, calling all these celebrities by their first names), and though it's definitely architectural, it's still elegant.  And her hair and makeup look gorgeous.

Ahh, yes, the gown that made Alicia Vikander an overnight Disney princess, as the saying is.  (Is that a saying?  I'm not sure.  It sounds like something I've heard before.  Anywho, moving on.)  It's always cool to see a celebrity wear a bold color on the red carpet, and this is no exception.  Just look at her face, people!  She looks so springlike and fresh and bubbling and vivacious and innocent and young and just presh.  Hearts <3

I must have my share in the conversation sparkles in these posts, and Emmy Rossum has delivered ;D  It's like wearing stars, as one of you loverly peoples said in a previous post.  

The differing-lengths style typically isn't my thing, but it is growing on me, I'll give it that.  I've liked this number since I first saw it quite a while ago.  The shoulder accents give it some more character, and the floor-length cutout skirt keeps it from being too short.  The magenta heels also bring out some interesting tints in the blue, don't you think?  

Again, another gown I've loved for a long time.  Does anyone else positively love the styling for this one?  The pink lip color might be too bright in most situations, but since the rest of the outfit is so simple, it really adds something.  It's just flow-y and elegant and beautiful, and I love that she wore this when she won her Oscar for The Blind Side (which, by the by, is a movie you really ought to see if you haven't).  

I don't really like the upper half *aHERM*, but below the waist is just incredible.  The closer you look, the more amazing details and swirls and patterns you find.  It's so striking and unique; I like it vey mucho.  

And lastly, this swath of gorgeousness.  This was a chance find last night, and I'm so happy I happened upon it.  That color would wash me out terribly, but Claire Danes pulls it off beautifully.  The sheen of the material, the details of the bodice, the Cinderella-ness of it!  Flawless.  

What do you think of these gowns?
Do we like any of the same ones?
Which was your favorite?  

Friday, May 13, 2016

"The triumphant return!" (if you don't read that in Ray Romano's voice, it just doesn't have the same ring)

Yes!  I am (hopefully) back!  Thank you all so much for your well-wishes for my recovery and your patience and general awesomeness.  I appreciate them :)

What better way to get back into the blogosphere than with some of those nifty tag/award-thingies?  Laura and Abigail have both nominated me for "Infinity Dreams", and Miss March has nominated me for the "Liebster"!  Thank you so much, ladies!  Now, the rest of you, if you haven't visited their blogs, do yourselves a favor and do so posthaste ;)

(A superfluity of Gilmore Girls paraphernalia may or may not follow.)

Infinity Dreams

~ Rules ~ 
1. Thank the Blogger who tagged you
2. Tell us 11 facts about yourself
3. Answer the 11 questions given to you
4. Tag 11 bloggers and give them 11 new questions to answer

~ 11 Facts Concerning Moi ~  (I briefly considered doing 22 facts, since I was tagged twice, but briefly is the operative word here.)

1.)  Speaking of Gilmore Girls…guys, they're doing a revival of the show!!!  FOUR 90-MINUTE MOVIES.  I'm pretty excited (and a little nervous, because I really want the movies to be clean, and to end wellwhich in my book would mean a double wedding with Luke/Lorelai and Jess/Rory.)  Have you guys heard about it?  What are your thoughts on a good ole Stars Hollow reunion?  I guess that didn't really have much to do with me personally, except to tell you that I'm really excited about it ;D

2.)  I love beach-combing.

3.)  I have a remarkably low tolerance for spice and flavor in food.

4.)  Rebecca of York is a major fictional role model for me.  "Thy opinion may fluctuate on the wild and changeful billows of human opinion, but mine is anchored on the Rock of Ages." GAAAHHHH.

5.)  One of the things I love most about spring is how the world seems to get crowded with all the greenery.  It's like, everything's rather bare and stark, and then all of a sudden spring happens, and BOOM!  The earth can't even contain all the leaves and blossoms and grass :)

6.)  I have an idea for a project that I'm super excited about:  it's a bulletin board of pictures and quotes and other things of pretty, focusing on personality acceptance and introversion and all that jazz.  I'll have to post pictures if I get to do it; it's kind of hard to explain.  

7.)  Sometimes I start sentences without having a clear plan of how to actually finish them lucidly, and I end up literally babbling.  My friends probably think I have some sort of problem, bless.  

8.)  I can't swim well.  At all.  It's kind of a problem, actually…

9.)  I have brown hair and brown eyes.  (I just realized, I don't think I ever mentioned that.  Now I'm curious--how many of you imagined me as a brunette and how many imagined me as a blonde or a redhead?  Or did you?  ;-P)

10.)  A song that has been made into a music video for one of my favorite couples can instantly become one of my new favorite songs, even if I would never have found it otherwise.  Handy how that works :D

11.)  The below picture has been making me randomly crack up today:  

~ Laura's Questions ~ 

If you could have personally witnessed anything, what would it have been?  Oh, wow.  I haven't a clue, actually.  Probably something in Jesus' lifetime here on earth, I assume?

Do you like musicals? And if so, which ones?  I do indeed ;D  Which ones?  I'll just list all of the ones that I can think of at the moment (not counting Disney movies), but please understand, I do NOT condone all content in all of these.  Here goes:  Seven Brides for Seven Brothers, Evita, The Sound of Music, My Fair Lady, The Phantom of the Opera, Les Misérables, The King and I, Calamity Jane, Kiss Me Kate, Thoroughly Modern Millie, and…that's all I can think of for now.

What genre of books do you like to read the most?  The classics, probably.  Classics/historical fiction in general.  

Naomi, this is for you.  And for you, Lois, and for anybody else who loves Call the Midwife :)

What is the weirdest book you have ever read?  Well, I technically haven't finished this book yet, but I plan to eventually.  It's called The Book of Sorrows, and it's by Frank Wagnerin Jr. (don't think I spelled his last name correctly).  It's…odd.  Very odd.  I don't quite know what to make of it, honestly, which is complicated by the fact that the writing is really good!

Are you a daredevil or do you play it safe?  *primly*  I prefer to not have the word 'devil' in any way connected with me, thankyouverymuch.  Haha, just kidding, but I am definitely more of a play-it-safe kind of gal.  

What can always cheer you up?  Watching a movie/tv show with my parents/siblings!

What's your favorite movie?  Ha.  You're cute.  

What's your favorite word?  Gah, I don't know!  I like 'resplendent' and 'catharsis' (though I wish it sounded prettier), and lots of others, but it's taking me too long to think of them :P

What has been your favorite birthday celebration?  You know, I typically don't really have a party or anything like that on my birthday, but I did enjoy doing that once.  I've also liked it when my mom and I have gone out to shop.  

Did you go through any "phases"?  Bless you, yes!  The coin-collecting phase, the talking-to-myself phase (never really grew out of that one), the horse-figurine phase (still love those), lots of phases.  

What's the strangest thing someone has said to you?  One time a number of years back, two of my friends and I were on the tire swing at the church where our co-op was held, and one of the older students generously offered to push us.  (You'd have to know this guy--he's very polite, very nice, all of that, but also of a strong mind and strong opinions.)  So he's pushing us, and all of a sudden he says--in a perfectly polite and matter-of-fact tone, mind you, but still says--"You girls are a lot heavier than you look."

~ Abigail's Questions ~

What is your earliest memory of reading, or being read to?  I don't remember!  I do remember being on the swings at church one time and deciding I wanted to learn how to read for myself.  Oh, and guys, my mom just told me that she read more when she was recovering from my birth than from any of my siblings'!  Coincidence?  I think NOT!  ;D

Why did you choose to start a blog?  Originally, the plan was to have a place to put movie reviews for some school friends, because I'd been stalking blogs for so long that I decided I wanted to start writing reviews.  Eventually, however, I realized that I wanted to be more involved in the blogosphere (as in, actually comment and meet people and stuff like that), so I made my blog public, began to comment, and here I am!  You guys are honestly such tremendous blessings to me, you don't even know <3

Since this is the Infinity Dreams Tag, what is your biggest dream, no matter how out there it may seem?  Truth be told, I don't actually have that many dreams--and I don't say that in a pity-me way, honestly!  But I would really, really love to be in a stage musical someday.  A leading role would be a lot of fun, and a lot of stress :D

Favorite subject in school? (If you in school still. If not, what WAS your favorite subject?)  I'm still in school for a little while longer, at least, and my favorite subject is literature.  (I SHOCKED you with that one, didn't I?)

Where would you live in the world, if you could live anywhere?  In the same state in which I now live :)  But there are lots of places it might be fun to visit!

How would you describe your personal style?  Non-existent :P  KIDDING, I'm kidding.  Um…relaxed but feminine, maybe?

Who has inspired you? It can be anyone, past, present, fictional, or no.  Well, as I mentioned in my eleven facts, Rebecca of York.  The way Scott wrote her character…just, mah WORD.  The early Christian martyrs, I suppose (you suppose?!); C. S. Lewis; I think Johann Sebastian Bach's life really inspired me when I was learning about classical music last year; anybody who lived through the World Wars and didn't decide to just give up after all the inhumanity they'd seen.  I'm kind of drawing a blank on specific inspirational people, I'm afraid…OH!  Sylvester Stallone.  I'm really not that familiar with any of his movies except the Rocky saga, but I stumbled across a picture post on Pinterest that narrated his life story, and then did a bit more research on him, and LET ME TELL YOU. 

Do you prefer open plains, and sparkling beaches, or rugged mountains and wild forests?  Now, Abigail, I want you to know that you have created quite a stir in my subconscious with this question, ever since I first read it sometime last month.  It's such a difficult choice, because they're both so amazing!  But I think, all things considered, I'd have to go with rugged mountains and wild forests.  The idea of sparkling beaches inspires and soothes me, but you see, I don't necessarily miss the ocean/the beach if I'm somewhere they're not (which I usually am).  But I do miss mountains.  I just do.  I live surrounded by lots and lots of mountains, and I miss them whenever they're not there.  

If you could meet one celebrity, who would you choose?  …I don't know.  ("Do we detect a pattern here?")

Favorite Disney princess? (Or Disney character if you don't prefer princesses.)  Belle, Pocahontas, Anna, or Elsa :)
Favorite quote?  Here's one that brought great joy to my soul when I read it a few days ago:

"We do not live in this world at random, bodies drifting through empty space, forming and colliding by mere chance; nor are we the masters of our own destinies, as much as we may desire to be.  Rather, we are like the dandelion seeds my brother cast into the summer sky, ferried along by He who guides the winds and stills the waters, our journeys a mystery to us, except in hindsight.  Along the way, we find those we are meant to love and those who are meant to love us.  We fashion our lives according to what we have known and what we have yet to learn.  At times, each of us is the child in a burning house, escaping through tiny doors, dependent upon the grace of God and the kindness of strangers.  

Wherever our journeys may take us, whatever struggles they bring, one solid truth underlies all that is. Not a drop of water falls from heaven unintended.  We are, each of us, meant to change the ocean and to be changed by it, to become new creations as we travel our paths, and answer our challenges, and live and relive our Camelots.

~ Lisa Wingate, Dandelion Summer

It's a little long, and I do apologize, but IT'S JUST SO PWETTY. 


~ Rules ~
1. Link back to the person who tagged you
2. Answer the 11 questions
3. Tag 11 bloggers (and let them know you tagged them)
4. Ask them 11 questions

~ Miss March's Questions ~ 

What is your personality type?  INFJ, through and though.  (At least, I'm pretty darn sure, because I've taken the test three times, on two different websites, and gotten it each time.  Plus the Myers-Briggs description of INFJs is almost scarily dead-on accurate of me, in almost every particular.)

What is one of your newest favorite movies? (As in one that you recently found, not necessarily a newly made film.)  One that I'm just getting into is Finding Neverland.  I had watched it once long ago, and decided I didn't like it, because it was "depressing".  Then my mom got it from the library during my family's bout of the flu, I watched it, and I loved it.  It's SUCH a good movie.  

Have you ever been prejudiced against a certain movie before watching it, but then after seeing it decided it wasn't so bad? What movie was it?  I'm sure there was one, but I can't think of it…

If you could meet any author in person, who would it be?  Probably Lewis ;)

How many siblings do you have, and where do you fall in the lineup? (Sorry if that's a rather nosey question. You may answer it or not as you so choose.)  It's not nosey!  I have five siblings, and I am actually the fifth sibling.  So, fifth of six.

If you could be related to any fictional character (from a movie or a book), who would it be and what relation would they be to you?  What a tantalizing idea!  Well, this isn't necessarily a relation, but I'd love to be one of the few females with whom Bertram Wooster is comfortable.  

What is your favorite household chore, and what is your worst?  
I don't know…I don't know which my favorite is.  I think my least favorite is Bona-ing the floor. 

Anne and Diana (from Anne of Green Gables) are a classic example of best friends. Do you have a best friend, and if so which one of you is more like Anne and which is more like Diana?  Well, we're not really that much like Anne and Diana, to be honest…*tries to think of another famous fictional duo and fails*  We've both got bits of each in us, I suppose.

Speaking of Anne...

What was one of the first chapter books you ever read? (You know, the one that made you feel so proud because you were reading a "big kids' book"!)  Probably one of the books from the American Girl franchise :)

What is one of the yummiest, most delicious desserts you can think of at the present moment?  "Something deep-fried and smothered in chocolate!"  Hehe.  Props if you get that reference.  

If you could be a character in one of your favorite movies, which movie would it be and which character would you choose?  Well, I could choose to be Éowyn in the Houses of Healing, for obvious reasons *ahemFaramirahem*.  And speaking of Anne again, I think it'd be terribly interesting to be Anne for a bit, don't you?  Or I could choose to be Molly Gibson, to see if we really are as similar as I think we are…

Whew!  I know.  That was an extremely long post.  Thanks so much for reading, you guys!  And thank you, Laura, Abigail, and Miss March, for tagging/nominating me!  It's so good to be back with all you dear people :)