Sunday, March 31, 2013

Easter Weekend

I realized earlier that I hadn't blogged all weekend, and if you don't count the book review from Friday, it's been a week.  Sorry about that.  Last week was extremely stressful for me, and it wasn't really that pretty.  Anything I would have written would have been complaints, and no one wants to read that.

I had a really great Easter weekend though.  I went home on Thursday to spend the holiday with my family, and I just got back to school about an hour ago.  I didn't do much while I was home except go to church.  I'm Catholic, so Holy Week means a lot of attending church.  I don't mind though since I love the Holy Week masses.  I also got candy this morning, and no one should ever complain about that.

I went to see The Host with my sister on Saturday.  I think I'll wait until it's on DVD to review it because I think I need to see it again before I talk about it much.  I did really enjoy it though.  It's been a while since I read the book, so I can't say how faithful they were.  I wanted to re-read it, but I couldn't find it anywhere in my room.  Now it will at least be until I go back in May before I get a chance to.  I also thought there were parts of the movie that were cheesy, but overall I thought it was great.  I love the casting for Uncle Jeb and Ian.  They were both perfect.  I really liked the little boy who played Jamie too.  Most of the cast did a fantastic job.

While my sister and I were in Owensboro to see the movie, we also went to see my grandma (and I got a haircut but that's boring...).  It was really awesome to see her, and I enjoyed spending some time with her.

Now I'm back and school with about five weeks until finals.  Let's hope it's a good five weeks!

Friday, March 29, 2013

Book Review: Wedge's Gamble by Michael A. Stackpole

ISBN: 0553568027
Published: June 1996
Publisher: Spectra
Read from March 14th to 28th, 2013
Synopsis from Goodreads:

Sleek, swift, and deadly, they are the X-wing fighters. And as the battle against the Empire rages across the vastness of space, the pilots risk both their lives and their machines for the cause of the Rebel Alliance. Now they must embark on a dangerous espionage mission, braving betrayal and death on the Imperial homeworld to smash the power of a ruthless foe!
It is the evil heart of a battered and reeling Empire: Coruscant, the giant city-world from whose massive towers the Imperial High Command directs the war. The Rebels will invade this mighty citadel in a daring move to bring the Empire to its knees. But first Wedge Antilles and his X-wing pilots must infiltrate
Coruscant to gain vital intelligence information. Capture means death, or worse--enslavement by the vicious leader known as "Iceheart," Ysanne Isard, now Emperor in all but name. And one of Rogue Squadron's own is already her slave, a traitor hidden behind a mask of innocence, working to betray both colleagues and the Rebellion itself.


This is the second book in the X-Wing series.  I read the first last month and filmed a video review, but it's privated because it was a really horrible video.  I'll just say that I really enjoyed the first book, and it made me look forward to reading this one.

I enjoyed this one even more than the first.  I liked the characters in the first book, but I became really attached to them in this one.  And the ending has me wanting to go grab the next one right now and start reading.

As with the first book, I find it difficult to review this one since it is a Star Wars book, and not everyone is a Star Wars fan.  I still haven't really worked out how best to review them because of that (and it's why the video for the first one turned out so badly).  I'll just say that I really enjoyed, and I'm looking forward to the next book in the series.  I think being on Coruscant was really interesting because I find it to be a very interesting planet.  And as I said before, I'm starting to become really attached to several of the characters after this book.  Hopefully I'll get around to the third one soon!

Sunday, March 24, 2013

I Kind of Love Rugrats

I'm not really a huge fan of snow in the first place, but snow in March is even worse.  I'm definitely not thrilled about the weather we had today.  I'm praying that it goes away really soon.

I didn't get much sleep last night because I was tossing and turning in bed for at least an hour.  I used to have insomnia several years back, but this was the first time I've had that hard of a time falling asleep in years.  Still, I felt fine when I woke up this morning.  It's starting to catch up with me though, and I can barely keep my eyes open as I write this.

I haven't really done anything today.  I managed to get more writing today than I have in a single day for months, so that was really nice.  Other than that I've basically just been watching DVDs and Netflix.  I paused Rugrats to write this.  It's actually this straight to DVD Rugrats movie that came out after the series.  There were apparently two of them, and they are probably the only Rugrats thing I have never seen.  So of course I plan on watching both of them.  I also learned today that there was a spin-off of Rugrats (other than All Grown Up!) that only lasted four episodes.  I'm now determined to find it and watch it somehow.  Sadly it's not on Netflix, but I'll find it somehow.

I really want to write more because I'm just in that mood, but the fact that I can barely keep my eyes open is making typing extremely difficult.  It's kind of too late in the day to even think about taking a nap though.  Let's hope I can stay awake through Rugrats.

Saturday, March 23, 2013


I have a really big soft spot for finales.  Whether it's the final episodes of a TV show, the last movie in a series, or the final book in a series, it'll probably be my favorite.  I don't know why exactly.  I think it has something to do with the sense of resolution.  I like seeing things tied up.  I like seeing how the writers resolve everything.  And (hopefully) I like seeing the characters get a happy ending.  In fact, the happy ending is probably one of the biggest reasons.  I love seeing the characters that I've grown close to overcome whatever it is that they've been struggling with and finally get a happy ending.

However, I also think finales get the most criticism.  It's easy to see why that is.  Not everyone is always going to agree with how something ends, and that leads to a lot of people being upset with some aspect of the ending.  Whether it was a character ending up with a different character than someone thought they should be with or whether you're given too much or too little information about the characters' futures.  Someone is always disappointed.

The Harry Potter epilogue is a really great example of this.  It gets so much criticism because a lot of people don't like how much information was given on the characters' future families, and other people felt it was cheesy and too sentimental.  (Sure Albus Severus isn't exactly a normal name, but since when have names in Harry Potter been normal?)

I love the epilogue though, and I think it's because I look at it differently than other people.  I read and write fanfiction.  Now, I think most fanfiction writers didn't like the fact that we were given children in the epilogue because they thought it limited their ability to write.  However, I think it just gave us new awesome characters to work with.  Also, it's perfectly fine to disregard the epilogue if you want and create your own version, so I never saw the big deal about that.

As for the cheesiness, I like it.  I'm an extremely sentimental person, and I just love seeing characters be happy.  Plus, I think I'm hopelessly optimistic when it comes to fictional stories.  Other people have very clear ideas of what they want to happen.  I like to think about what could happen, but I don't settle on just one idea.  That way I end up being happy with whatever the writer(s) chooses no matter what (at least in most circumstances).  I've never really felt let down by an ending like I've seen so many other people be.

I just love endings.  Actually, I don't know if I should say that because I hate seeing things come to an end.  I'm not the fondest of change, and I don't like the idea of something I love being over.  At the same time though, I always end up loving the ending of the story.  Very few times have I not loved an ending.  I don't know what it is, but it just almost always ends up being my favorite part of the story.  After all, it is what we were waiting for the entire time.

Saturday, March 16, 2013

An Amazing Day with Friends and Starkid

Yesterday was a great day.  I spent the morning sitting around the house watching the Little House pilot, but yesterday afternoon I went to the local park with Haley and Jordan for several hours.  I hadn't seen either one of them since my Christmas break, and it was amazing spending time with them.  We just sat at the park and talked, but it was seriously the most fun I've had all break.

A Very Potter Senior Year was also released yesterday evening, and that's how I spent my entire night.  It was beyond amazing.  If you follow me on Twitter, you had the pleasure of kind of seeing my emotional break down.  If you're not a Starkid fan, I recommend you become one.  Everything they do is amazing, not just the Harry Potter stuff.  It's been incredibly to watch them become as big as they have because I watched A Very Potter Musical the first day it was put on Youtube.  They're incredible, and AVPSY didn't disappoint.  It was even more amazing than I could possibly have hoped for.

When it's written down like this, it doesn't really seem like much happened yesterday, but it sure felt like it.  I mean, AVPSY is pretty long and took me hours to get through, and Haley, Jordan, and I were at the park for hours.  It was a great day though, and believe me, I was in an excellent mood the entire day.

As for today, I'm not really doing much.  I go back to school tomorrow, so this is my last full day at home.  So far I've mostly just worked on school work.  Now I've moved on to reading fanfiction, and I figure that's how a lot of the rest of my day will be spent.  I'm just going to enjoy having my own room for a day longer before I have to go back to the dorms.

Book Review: The Reluctant King by Rachel Higginson

Published: December 6th, 2012
Publisher: self-published
Read from March 4th to 14th, 2013
Synopsis from Goodreads:

Avalon St. Andrews has endured Hell and war in an attempt to secure freedom and immortality for his people. Raised and conditioned to be both warrior and leader, he now sits on a throne with his sister Eden, governing the Kingdom in peace. While his people enjoy the benefits of his struggle and loss, he is restless, bored and alone.
Avalon is summoned to fight to save his people once more as the Kingdom is threatened by a brand new evil. In addition to reigning in a kingship he doesn’t want, he is fighting against the very people he has fought so hard to protect. They are determined to throw away their newfound freedom and their newfound leaders.
In this war and in this kingship he feels alone. And for the first time he feels hollow. That is until Amelia Cartier shows up, invading his every thought and shaking up his carefully controlled world.
Now he faces yet another battle—making Amelia his queen.

I've gone on and on before about how in love I am with the Star-Crossed series.  This is the fifth book in that series, and the main character is now Avalon (the twin brother of Eden, the main character of the first four books).  This was still definitely a Star-Crossed book, but having Avalon as a main character made it a bit different as well.  I absolutely loved it.

I'm not going to lie, I kind of missed having Eden as a main character because I absolutely love her, but I also love Avalon and loved having him more focused on as well.  I had never thought about Avalon and Amelia becoming a couple in the first four books, but I was surprised at how well that works.  They were amazing together.  I love how the romance in this book is so much different than the romance in the first four books, but it's just as amazing.

The conflict in this book also seemed more intense to me than the conflict with Lucan in the first four books.  I think it has something to do with the main characters being the people being attacked as opposed to the people attacking.  It just feels like they're in more danger.

It was amazing to hear more about all of the characters that I fell in love with in earlier books, and also get a different perspective on that world from Avalon.  The book was absolutely amazing, and I cannot wait for more.

Friday, March 15, 2013


Being in the One Direction fandom has kind of made me think more about tattoos than ever before.  It's kind of hard not to when it seems one of them is getting a new one every week or so.  I used to absolutely hate tattoos, but (way before One Direction) my attitude began to change.  I still don't ever plan on getting a tattoo.  I'm way too scared of needles, and I'm beyond terrified that I'd regret it later (since I tend to second guess myself on everything).  But, if I were to get a tattoo, I've already thought of several ideas for them.

I started warming up to tattoos when people online were talking about their Harry Potter tattoos.  I know quite a few people have Deathly Hallows symbols tattoos, and that was the first time I ever really thought, "That's actually something I could see myself getting tattooed on me."  Harry Potter is such a huge part of my life, and if there was something I would want tattooed permanently on my body, I could do a lot worse than something from Harry Potter.  There are things other than the Deathly Hallows symbol of course, but I really think that would be the first thing I'd go to if I were getting a tattoo, no matter how cliche it is.  I just really love Harry Potter (and the Deathly Hallows symbol).

The other somewhat obvious idea is a cross.  I don't think I need to explain that one.  But a cross is simple enough, and everyone knows what it means when they see it.

I also think it would be cool to have a nerdfighter tattoo, although I have no idea what it would even be.  That community has meant so much to me over the years.  Nerdfighters truly are amazing people.

So, while it's extremely doubtful that I'll ever get a tattoo, I'll probably keep coming up with ideas for hypothetical tattoos.  For some reason it's just something that's really interesting to think about for me.

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Doing Nothing At Home

I've spent the last couple of days just sitting around home doing absolutely nothing productive.  Today I even forgot to work on homework other than talking to my partner for one project a bit.  I literally just remembered I had planned to work on some things a few minutes ago, but I couldn't be bothered to do it now.  I need a break and it's not much work, so I think I'll be fine.

This was the first time I've actually been able to make myself write a blog post since Sunday, and now my mom is calling me downstairs for dinner.  So much for that.  I'm starving though, and she got sandwiches from a place here in my hometown.  It's one of the things I crave while up in Indy, so I'm excited.  I just wish this was a better post...  At least I get some delicious food!

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Busy Day Back Home

I'm back home for spring break, and it's been a crazy couple of days.  The car ride home always wears me out for some strange reason.  You wouldn't think three and a half hours in a car would make you so tired, but I guess switching time zones makes it worse.  Plus, with the clocks moving forward an hour, that's been even more screwed up this trip.

I spent a lot of yesterday in Owensboro with my mom.  (My town is so small that there's not much here, and you basically have to cross the river and go to Owensboro, KY for most stuff.)  The opening night of my old high school's performance of Les Mis was that night, and my sister is a member of the ensemble, so we got her some flowers from Walmart in addition to doing some other shopping.  We also had to stop by Macy's to see if my mom could find something for my brother to wear to the two weddings we have this summer (two of my cousins are getting married).

Normally I wouldn't have come along because I hate shopping, but we also went to the AT&T store to get me a new phone!  It was time for my upgrade, so I was able to get an iPhone 4!  I'll miss my iPhone 3 for sentimental reasons, but I really, really love my new phone.  I'm using my sister's One Direction case for the moment, but I've ordered a case that should come in the mail soon.  It's a purple owl case.  Those are two of my favorite things in the world, so I'm excited.

We also stopped by my grandma's to give her her tickets for Les Mis.  It was really awesome seeing her, and I took a million pictures of her cat on my new phone.  Her cat has always been kind of skittish around me, but she came right up to me yesterday and crawled on to my lap.  She's seriously the cutest thing.

And then we attended opening night of my old high school's performance of Les Mis.  It was absolutely wonderful.  They always do an amazing job.  It's weird though because of the amount of kids I didn't recognize.  They had a lot of elementary and middle school kids, but still, soon I'll hardly know any of those kids.  (I'm over-reacting though.  I just graduated last year.)  The play was long, but really well done.  My old school has always done a great job on their productions (and I'm not just saying that because I was on stage crew once).

After a packed day yesterday, it's nice to have a chance to just sit around the house today.  All I had to do was go to church this morning, and it was nice being back there.  I always miss St. Bernard when I'm at college.  I know mass is basically the same everywhere, but there's just something about mass at St. Bernard.

Now I get a day of lazing around the house.  It's nice being back home, and I'm really looking forward to this week.

Friday, March 8, 2013

Book Review: The Complete Idiot's Guide to Digital Video by Karl Bardosh

ISBN: 1101043407
Published: November 6th, 2007
Publisher: Alpha
Read from February 23rd to March 3rd, 2013
Synopsis from Goodreads:

Join the digital revolution.
With the availability and affordability of digital movie-making equipment, it’s now easier than ever for aspiring filmmakers to create the great movie they’ve always wanted to make. From information on creating mini-films on a PDA to making low-budget, full-length digital movies, The Complete Idiot’s Guide® to Digital Video provides all the information you need to turn your idea into reality.
—A must-read for every film student or novice
—Covers all aspects of production, from casting and directing to light and sound to digital editing
—Includes 8-page, 4-color insert
—Up-to-date recommendations on equipment and software
—Clear, easy-to-follow instructions and guidance, as well as all the practical, artistic, and technical “step-by-step” advice that only an experienced writer/director can offer


This book is absolutely wonderful for anyone interested in film-making.  I bought it because I make Youtube videos, and I wanted to see if any of the information in it would be useful for that.  Although most of the book is definitely more geared towards people who are extremely dedicated to bigger projects, I still learned some really helpful stuff.

There are chapters on just about everything you'd need to know from types of cameras to lighting to editing software.  It made me wish I could afford a better camera and editing software.  (Seriously, I've been wanting better editing software for years.  I think I'm going to try and get that for a birthday present this year.)

I definitely recommend this book to anyone who is interested in film-making, even on a somewhat casual level.  It has a lot of really great information.

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Movie Review: Dr. Seuss' The Lorax

Universal Pictures
Directed by Chris Renaud
Written by Cinco Paul and Ken Daurio
Rated PG
Released in theaters: March 2, 2012
Released on DVD: August 7, 2012
Synopsis from Rotten Tomatoes:
The 3D-CGI feature Dr. Seuss' The Lorax is an adaptation of Dr. Seuss' classic tale of a forest creature who shares the enduring power of hope. The animated adventure follows the journey of a boy as he searches for the one thing that will enable him to win the affection of the girl of his dreams. To find it he must discover the story of the Lorax, the grumpy yet charming creature who fights to protect his world. -- (C) Universal

I've been wanting to see The Lorax since it came out.  We read the book and watched the short cartoon version in my economics class senior year (to talk about the economics of supply and demand I think it was), and it just happened to be a little bit before the movie was released.  The trailers for the movie all looked great as well, so I've been waiting to see this movie for a long time.

I thought it was great.  It was a really cute movie, and I enjoyed it.  It has a very obvious moral message, which I know some people don't like.  I usually don't like that sort of thing either, but I thought it was well done in this case.  I really liked how the expanded on the book.  All of the things from the book are there, but they take it even farther.

Oh, and I have to mention how cute the animals were.  They were adorable!  And I loved the relationship between the Lorax and the Once-ler.  Overall, it was just a cute enjoyable movie that also happened to have a good message to it.

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Tacos Make Everything Better

Today is Tuesday, which means it's my busy day and typically the day where I run around being extremely stressed.  Today's a bit different though.  I struggled to fall asleep last night because I was so uncomfortable thanks to being sick.  Then, I struggled to actually get out of bed when my alarm went off this morning, and it was a struggle to stay awake during psychology.

However, when I went to the dining hall for lunch roughly half an hour ago, I discovered that they had tacos, and I've been absolutely perfect since.  (That makes me sound slightly crazy, doesn't it?  I just can't tell you how much I love tacos, and this is only amplified by the food I usually have to eat while at school.)  I'm pretty optimistic about the rest of the day now.  The only downer is that I still need to get a partner for a project in one of my classes.  Today's the last time we meet before it's due, and I have no idea how to even go about finding a partner.  I don't really talk to anyone in that class, and my social anxiety doesn't help matters.  I hate being in these situations.  So, that's the only think that's making me a bit anxious at the moment.

I'm going to try and not focus on that for now though, so I stay in a good mood.  I need to get some homework done before my science lab, so I'm off to go work on that!

Monday, March 4, 2013

From Colds to Sinus Infections

I am sick for what is at least the third time in the past few months.  It's kind of ridiculous.  The past two times were colds, but this time, after talking to my mom and learning about the symptoms, I'm pretty sure I have a sinus infection.  I'd go to the nurse to find out for sure, but apparently she assumes everybody that goes in there is pregnant or has an STD and tries to convince them to go get tested.  (I'm not even kidding about that.  I've heard from multiple people who've had that experience.  One girl went in for a cold, and the nurse started poking her stomach and going on about how she thought she was pregnant.)  I think I'll just stick with taking Sudafed and hoping it gets better.  I go home for spring break this Friday anyway.

Today has gone pretty well for it being Monday and me being sick.  It was a bit tough to get up this morning, but once I got over that and the medicine I took kicked in, it started looking a lot better.  Two of my classes have tests Wednesday, so we finished up learning some stuff and reviewed some stuff as well.  English was basically just us peer editing and commenting on our genre pieces that we're writing for our multimedia project.  Science was spent learning about fungi, which I'll admit isn't the most thrilling topic in the world.  I think I zoned out more in there today than I have all year, although I place more blame on the medicine for that than the topic.

I still need to get down to the Ecolab this week, but since we just got put under a winter weather advisory until Wednesday and it started raining, that's going to have to wet.  I still have my fingers crossed that the weather will be good Thursday.

Sunday, March 3, 2013

Book Review: Jack and Yani Love Harry Potter by Mary Twomey

Published: November 15th, 2012
Publisher: self-published
Read from February 17th to 23rd, 2013
Synopsis from Goodreads:

Best friends Jack and Yani do everything together. After Yani’s thirtieth birthday party, however, she decides to leave town on a spontaneous vacation to visit all the sites of the young adult fiction novels she loves, hoping that when she returns, she’ll have buried the secret flame she has for Jack.
Forced by his friends to go on a road trip to track down Yani, Jack learns a lot about his best friend by reading the novels she’s been obsessed with. From vampire hunting in Forks to searching for wizards in Florida, Jack confronts his greatest fears –that he just might love Harry Potter…and perhaps, Yani.


This book is absolutely perfect for anyone who loves to read young adult books, especially if you happen to be older than the young adult target demographic.  Yani turns thirty in the book, and all of her friends give her a hard time for liking young adult literature.  One of my absolute favorite aspects of the book was how her friends learn to respect the books Yani loves.  I know that I've been teased for things I like in the past, so I loved seeing them finally give these books a chance and discover why Yani loves them so much.

The other great thing about the book was the places it takes place in.  They visit Forks and La Push, New Orleans (where Yani sees Anne Rice's house), San Diego (where they go to Comic Con), and Orlando (where they visit Universal and the Harry Potter theme park).  It was really neat to read about all of those places, especially considering Universal is the only one I've ever actually been able to go to.  It added a really neat aspect to the book.

Since Yani's friends decide to give some of her books a try, you also get some of the characters' reactions to things that happen in Harry Potter and Twilight as they go through the series.  I loved seeing them gradually get into the books and become attached.  It's nice to know that they'll be more accepting of what Yani loves from now on.

Jack and Yani were also adorable.  I loved their relationship.  I also loved how all of the other characters interacted as well.  There was an absolutely wonderful dynamic among the group of friends, and I loved reading about them.

I definitely recommend this book to anyone who enjoys young adult books.  It's a pretty quick and easy read.  Plus, it's adorable, and it's so much fun to read about the characters falling in love with some of the books that I love as well.  It's just a really fun book all around.

Saturday, March 2, 2013

Can the Snow Take a Break?

I love lazy Saturdays.  They are the absolute best.  I slept in a lot later than I have in at least a couple of months today, and it was fantastic.

It's only a little after noon, and I've only managed to get a bit of homework done.  I don't really have much else to do though.  There are two projects I need to work on, but I'm mostly done with each.  It should take me too long to work on them a bit more.

Other than that I've just spent my day on the computer.  I need to go visit my school's Ecolab for my science class, but it's been snowing lightly all day.  It's hardly anything, and none of it is sticking.  Still, I don't want to go down to the Ecolab when it's cold and snowing.  I'm hoping that I can go down on Thursday since it's supposed to be a bit warmer, and I only have one class that day.  Plus, I need to get down there before spring break, and I leave Friday.  Let's hope for the best.  I really do love it down there.  I'd just rather visit without freezing.