Tuesday, December 29, 2009
Monday, December 21, 2009
Sunday, December 20, 2009
A casting call has gone out for Forks residents (yes, you must permanently live in the town!) to try out for a proposed reality show, reports the Forks Forum."
However, that does not mean that I have given up paper books. I love the feel of the pages, the weight of a big book in my hands, and yes....even the smell of them is enjoyable. The reason I know that paper books will never be completely obsolete is because of the pictures I'm sharing with you below. It's been four years since my grandfather, Joe Mitchell passed away after battling cancer. Four years later, I still think about him every single day. The holidays make it doubly hard to not think about him. For Christmas it became a sort of tradition after I was in college to buy him books. You couldn't tell by looking at the big, burly man that he loved to read, but he did -especially Westerns and I would buy him three or four every year. When he passed, I didn't know what I wanted to take of his to remember him by. My mother took his rough flannel shirts that would scour my cheek when I would give him a hug, and my sisters each took things that meant something to them, but I took one book. One. It was the last Western that I bought him, and I don't know why I only took that book, because he had a huge collection by the time he died. I found out two days ago why I did pick that lone, solitary book.
I was pulling out books from my cabinet, in a vain attempt to organize my chaotic shelves and stumbled across that ONE book. Grief is a funny thing. It ebbs and flows like the tide and come crashing down on you like a tsunami. I sat there, with that book in my hand, piles of books and papers around me and began thumbing through the pages. I hadn't even opened his book until that moment. Inside, there was nothing that would matter to the casual observer that happened to pick it up in a used bookstore, but to me, those pages contained my Pawpaw. I found coffee stains, and greasy smears from his fingers and it brought me right back to his living room and I could see him laid back in his recliner, book propped up on his belly, probably snacking on Spanish peanuts and having him a cup o' joe while reading into the wee hours of the night. I stuck my nose deep into the pages and I could SMELL my grandparent's home. A smell that can't be described and can never be duplicated. I sat there for a long time, crying like a baby (much like I'm crying now as I type this) and it dawned on me the power that paper books can have. No digital book can imprint memory like a paper book can. How lucky am I that I have a tiny piece of my Pawpaw to keep on my shelf and visit whenever I feel the urge?
Saturday, December 19, 2009
Remember the hoop-lah after Robert Pattinson was cast as Edward Cullen? I do! I was one of the naysayers but eventually learned to love Catherine Hardwick's choice for EC. I can't imagine anyone else as Edward, and would disown the franchise if they recast him for Breaking Dawn. So before you shoot me down, picture Lily Collins with a bow and arrow, dodging balls of flame and avoiding the deadly stings of trackerjackers!
Want to read more opinions for who should play Katniss? Check out this post!
*Lindsay Pulsipher as Crystal
*Joe Manganiello as Alcide
Thursday, December 17, 2009
Back to my point, I was reading their blog today (which has become a sort of indulgence for me) and commented on a recent post "Seven Deadly Sins of Twilight". If you haven't read this post by Jenny Jerkface, you need to do it...NOW! It totally described me during my Twilight-induced high after reading all of the saga books (excluding Breaking Dawn) during my Christmas break of 07'. I was a pathetic loser. It was literally like I was on drugs. All I thought about was Forks, Edward, Bella, and the Cullen clan. It made me remember all of the gooey feelings that come with first love and all that jazz. It made me want MORE! MORE! I tell you! I was also sort of depressed after finishing the books, because I didn't want my Edward Cullen experience to end. So I read them a SECOND time all within a week of finishing them. It was really *bleeping* pathetic. I experienced each and every sin mentioned in Jerface's post. All seven. Hard. As I totally diverge off of the intended path of this post, just know that I more than related to Jenny Jerface's experiences and felt compelled to leave a comment, which led me to a discovery that I shamefully admit is adding more fuel to my Twilight fire: FAN FICTION.
1. http://www.fanfiction.net/ - you must create an account, and then go to Jenny Jerkface's page to see a list of her favorite posts here:
2. Once you are hooked on the temptation that is fan fiction, try this saucy story that is pretty forkin' intense. Go to http://www.twilighted.net/, create an account and choose search, "NC-17 & Breaking Dawn" and it will take you to 'The Honeymoon'. Holy Cow, it is very DETAILED, and I am a fan of the Sookie Stackhouse books, so I didn't think any type of "vampire love" could embarass me. I was wrong. I'm thoroughly embarassed! Good luck getting out of your pjs and removing your laptop from your lust-filled face this weekend...hee, hee!
Tuesday, December 15, 2009
Billy Corgan is old. And bald. And creepy looking. He reminds many of Uncle Fester's love child, so why in the world would someone who just finished up a fling with nappy Tila Tequila pique your interest? I know that breaking up with Tony Romo had to be hard, but honestly, he is laughing at you right now. This is not adequate rebound material. Is this the best you could scrounge up in Hollywood? Seriously, Jess? Seriously?
Your Concerned Texas Fans...or those of us who sorta used to like you whenever you were with Nick Lachey and on Newlyweds, but we won't remind you of how royally you screwed that up.
Please, Lionsgate, at least release a name or two of actors for Katniss, Peeta or Gale. Sheesh, even a name for Haymitch would at least give me something to mull over until the summer of 2010 rolls around.
Click HERE for a full list of casting suggestions! A great list of potential castings for you to critique...BE NICE! ;)
Sunday, December 13, 2009
Entertainment Weekly's Review of The Princess and the Frog (Give an "A" Grade)
Young viewers of The Princess and the Frog won't give a croak that the marvelous new adventure from Walt Disney Animation Studios has been created using the same hand-drawn, 2-D techniques that entertained those viewers' Bambi-loving grandparents more than 65 years ago. But adults should: This old-fashioned charmer holds its own beside the motion-capture elegance of Disney's A Christmas Carol, the engrossing stop-motion universes of Coraline and Fantastic Mr. Fox, the CG-enhanced genius of Up, the wonder of 3-D technology, and, indeed, the unique, hand-drawn Japanese artistry of Hayao Miyazaki's Ponyo as the year's deepest, most affecting, and most inventive movies.
Still, for the greenest or the grayest in the audience, the inclusive story of a resourceful African-American girl in 1930s New Orleans who kisses a frog with unexpected, funny results is its own reward: This A-level, G-rated entertainment is a fresh twist on the classic fairy tale about a handsome prince temporarily out of commission due to a malicious magic spell, a royal catch requiring the smooch of the right kindhearted, risk-taking heroine to restore him to his waiting throne. (As an added benefit, the smoocher gets to stand alongside her royal as his princess.) Only this time, the kiss that the lovely heroine, Tiana (voiced by Anika Noni Rose), bestows on frog-bodied Prince Naveen (Bruno Campos) backfires. He ends up in the same shape that he hopped into — and Tiana turns amphibian too. The patient, beautiful, hard- working, entrepreneurial young woman is particularly irked because she has no desire to be a princess at all; what she really wants to do is open her own restaurant.
Great swampy mess! The race to restore happily-ever-after order involves a jazz-loving alligator named Louis (Michael-Leon Wooley); Ray (Jim Cummings), a bebopping Cajun firefly; Dr. Facilier (Keith David), a shady New Orleans gent who dabbles in dark arts; and Mama Odie (Jenifer Lewis), ancient royalty of the bayou magic world with the power to undo Dr. Facilier's treachery. And this being the Disney kingdom under the beneficent creative rule of veteran directors Ron Clements and John Musker (The Little Mermaid, Aladdin) and composer Randy Newman (Cars, Toy Story), the frolic also includes songs of gumption (''Almost There''), mischief (''Friends on the Other Side''), optimism (''When We're Human''), spiritual uplift (''Dig a Little Deeper''), and the love of something up above — in this case, an evening star (''Ma Belle Evangeline'').
But while little kids laugh at the froggy humor (summed up in the excellent, repeated punchline ''that's not slime you are secreting — it's mucus!''), the firefly antics, and the cute sight of a fat alligator wailing on his trumpet like Louis Armstrong, adult viewers are rewarded with something more moving — a Proustian remembrance of the durable power of Disney at its old-school best. The filmmakers trust in story over special effects, and character over celebrity voices (there are almost none here, save for a brief cameo by queen-of-all-she-surveys Oprah Winfrey as Tiana's saintly mother, Eudora). They steep the movie in colloquial American culture. They offer a sophisticated musical experience (ragtime, zydeco, gospel, Tin Pan Alley) accessible even to the youngest ears. And in doing so, the creative team behind The Princess and the Frog upholds the great tradition of classic Disney animation.
The Princess and the Frog happens to introduce an African-American heroine, a Disney animation first. The story also happens to be set in an idealized New Orleans of an earlier time, a city whose historic beauty and cultural importance will forever be filtered by contemporary adults through grimmer awareness of the natural and man-made disasters of Hurricane Katrina. It's all the more effective, though, that this Big Easy of a movie needs no overt mention of Katrina to move our hearts, and inserts no overt lesson in the history of civil rights to distract from the groundbreaking matter-of-factness of Tiana's equality. What matters is that Tiana triumphs as both a girl and a frog, that dreams are fulfilled, wrongs are righted, love prevails, and music unites not only a princess and a frog but also kids and grown-ups. A
Friday, December 11, 2009
So I'm a few years behind on the phenomenon that is Sarah Dessen. She is one of the most popular YA Fiction authors and has several bestsellers on the shelves of your local bookstore. I was introduced to Sarah through reading her newest work, Along for the Ride and fell in love with her writing style and her ability to create dynamic characters. I've had Dessen novels on my shelves for several years, but have only had a few of my girls pick them up to read. I haven't promoted them very well, but that trend will soon change!
I took home her 2004 hit novel, The Truth About Forever over the weekend, and couldn't stop reading it! I've yet to read a book with so many thoroughly developed and lovable characters. If you love well-crafted love stories that lack the cheese factor, then give Sarah Dessen a try. Her books involve much more than teen romance, as they are true-to-form, coming-of-age novels that any of us who have passed through the awkward (and emotional) teen years can identify with and appreciate. Here is a synopsis of the novel from Sarah Dessen's website.
Sixteen-year-old Macy Queen is looking forward to a long, boring summer. Her boyfriend is going away. She's stuck with a dull-as-dishwater job at the library. And she'll spend all of her free time studying for the SATs or grieving silently with her mother over her father's recent unexpected death. But everything changes when Macy is corralled into helping out at one of her mother's open house events, and she meets the chaotic Wish Catering crew. Before long, Macy joins the Wish team. She loves everything about the work and the people. But the best thing about Wish is Wes—artistic,insightful, and understanding Wes—who gets Macy to look at life in awhole new way, and really start living it.
I can see why The Truth About Forever is an ALA 2005 Teen's Top Ten pick and the New York Public Library Book For the Teen Age 2005 . Check it out and see for yourself!
Thursday, December 10, 2009
Monday, December 7, 2009
Saturday, December 5, 2009
Thursday, December 3, 2009
Forks, in Washington, is the setting for a story about the romance between vampire Edward Cullen - played by British actor Robert Pattinson - and Bella Swan - acted by Kristen Stewart.
The movies - based on a series of books by U.S. author Stephanie Meyer - have captured the collective imagination of film goers around the world, sending them to Forks in search of the reality behind the fiction.
There were more visitors during June and July than in the whole of 2008 - unsurprising as Twilight fans can fully immerse themselves in the town's association with the film's characters.
They can visit Bella's school, Dr Cullen's hospital, the police station and have their picture taken with the Forks sign.
Local shops sell 'Bella Burgers' and a Twilight-themed restaurant is set to open.
The coastal town of Port Angeles is where Bella and Edward enjoyed their first date at Bella Italia, fans can eat mushroom ravioli and drink a glass of blood-red 'Twilight wine', produced at a local winery.
There is also the opportunity to visit the Quileute Indian Reserve, home to Jacob.
At La Push, visitors can experience traditional Native American culture, listening to stories and taking part in activities which include drumming classes.
Forks has even created a Stephanie Meyer Day in honour of the author, which falls on the date of Bella’s birthday - September 12.
Tourists are not only attracted by the Twilight link - the Olympic Peninsula region is sandwiched between the Olympic mountains and Pacific Ocean.
It is an area of natural beauty, boasting saltwater shores, alpine meadows and lush valleys.
The peninsula is also home to the temperate Hoh Rainforest and thrill seekers can kayak or raft on the River Hoh.
I want to go! Who wants a Bella Burger and then drive on down to the Quileute Rez? As my fellow Twihards would say, I would be "squeeee"ing all over this town! Check out the "OFFICIAL" tourism page for Forks, Washington check out the Twilight tours the town offers, and other cool places you can visit.
Anytime I search the web for more info on Suzanne Collin's addictive series, I hear nothin'. Crickets. Silence. Until today, when what to my wandering eyes did appear, but a little blurb, with hope in the New Year! Okay, poetry isn't my forte, but what I'm trying to say is that the THIRD BOOK in the series now has concrete release date! Whoot-whoot! Scheduled to release August 24th, 2010, we still have a few months to wait. Oh, what will happen to Peeta, Gale, and our beloved Katniss? I MUST KNOW NOW *head spins***eyes roll in back of head*** sorry, for a moment I lost my frickin' mind! I love this series! I'm so EAGER, ANXIOUS, NERVOUS, ZEALOUS, and twenty other adjectives that I can not think of about the release of the third installment. Let the countdown begin...over 8 months! 8 months! I will take a deep, cleansing breath, because I used to think the release of New Moon would never get here, but it came and went, and I will at least have Eclipse to get me through until August.
BARBIE AND THE ROCKERS! I was five the Christmas Santa brought me this rockin' Barbie. Mattel now has a collection called "My Favorite Barbie" that highlights the most popular Barbies of each decade. I also found another favorite:
My husband didn't understand why I was gushing and jumping up and down in the aisle, but Barbies were the only toy I requested from the time I was five until I was twelve, then I still played with my little sister's Barbies for a few more years on the down low! Check out the Barbie and the Rockers commercial below. Ken's mullet is SEXAAYYYY!
Tuesday, December 1, 2009
Lenzi Mon 11/30/09 9:26 PMBeautiful Creatures is NOT the next Twilight Saga. It was okay, but not something that will spread like wildfire. The reason Twilight is so popular is because it is an enthralling read, and will leave you dopey and craving more. Beautiful Creatures did not do that for me. Lena and Ethan’s eternal love was not convincing…in fact, it seemed rather boring and way too much work. For all of the Twilight bashers, I’m not sure why such hatred and negativity exists for the series, but pull the cobb out of your butt. As a middle school reading teacher, I’m thankful for Stephenie Meyer. I have girls (and boys, too) that were not readers before being sucked into the Twilight Saga, that are now clamoring for more books. Twilight helped them figure out that reading can be fun and enjoyable. So stop raining on my middle schoolers parade!
James Mon 11/30/09 9:34 PMTwilight is crap.
Your middle schoolers should be reading something with a better plot, characters, themes, and writing.
anonymous Mon 11/30/09 10:05 PMI don’t know what the deal with English/Reading teachers thinking that gives them an edge on Twilight opinion, but if anything, that makes me think worse of your education if you think Twilight is “enthralling.” The literary equivalent of pop rocks and cola? Sure. “At least they’re reading”? Sure. “My opinion is better than yours because I teach it”? There are bad apples in every profession, dipstick, who’s to say you’re not one of them?
Sarah Mon 11/30/09 10:33 PMI don’t get why some people think that their OPINIONS are somehow “fact”. Everyone is entitled to love what they love, and hate what they hate. And I’m talking about both Twilight fans and non-Twilight fans. I’ve seen both sides act as though their opinions are “absolute truths”, which is ridiculous. They’re OPINIONS.
Kelsey Mon 11/30/09 11:47 PMI’m sorry, but isn’t it your job as a “middle-school reading teacher” to get kids interested in good literature? If you can’t make the material enticing and get your students to relate to it, then I’d say you’re probably not that great of a teacher. But hey, why get the kids to eat their veggies when it’s easier to be lazy and feed them french fries?
Jane Mon 11/30/09 9:39 PMI would hope there’s never another “twilight.”
Twilight is such an overhyped, piece of garbage.
HOWEVER, If there were a film company that would make another YA book , one that’s actually GOOD (like Harry Potter), into a movie, they could have a hit.
Or they could follow Twilight’s footsteps and promote the hell out of it until we’re all forced to succumb to the power of the teenyboppers.
I’m hoping that once the twilight movies end (2011!!),
That some new amazing YA Books will hit it big, and ones that actually deserve the praise.
Twilight just milks off of shirtless men and cheesy merchandise.
Click here to read the rest of the article and the comments. It is crazy how many people are out there that blatantly hate something that is doing a lot of good for my teen readers (and even for people who have been out of their teens for quite sometime)! I know many of my friends have started reading again because Stephenie Meyer showed them they can enjoy a book. I have literally HUNDREDS of students who regularly read because of Meyer's series. As for "Kelsey", who suggests I should be teaching them quality literature, has she ever tried to make a room full of hormonal 8th graders read Charles Dickens or Jane Austen??? Child, PLEASE! "JAMES", "ANONYMOUS" and "KELSEY" can suck a big, sparkly fat one!