Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Questions: Who do you plan on buying gifts for and what will they be?

Aw, come on! What if I want to surprise people?

I have 2 projects I'm making. But you'll have to wait and see until AFTER Christmas...

but... fyi... some of what I'm working on, I've already talked about somewhere else...........

Questions: What Gift Do You Really Want This Christmas?

How many people guessed I'd say a ring? Come on, show of hands...

Well, honestly, I feel so blessed already, that although it's pretty obvious I'm lookin' for a ring, I am okay with what I already have. Now don't get me wrong, I'm looking forward to said ring, but I am okay with my relationship the way it is, so I don't need to pressure more than I already have (which is a LOT, believe me).

I feel like I should share more. But the truth is, I'm super impressed, and some things are just too good to blog about...

Questions: 5 Things You Dislike About Christmas.

  1. Lines. Suddenly shopping takes twice as long. And I swear people materialize out of no where. And sometimes all I need is a stick of butter or dryer sheets or something. And I still. have. to. wait.
  2. The rush. Everyone's in such a hurry. And so am I.
  3. Rain, slush, ice, and snow where I walk and drive. 'Nuff said.
  4. The fact that I always make a mess with projects and I love Christmas projects.
  5. THE COMMERCIALISM! I hate watching commercials during Christmas time, because its seriously a contest to see who  can pay more with them. Buy me, buy me, and don't just buy one of me, buy 20, and give me to your friends, too! And don't worry about the cost, we'll give you a credit card and charge you 3 times as much!

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Questions: 5 Things You Love About Christmas.

  1. I love how people are more giving. And more accepting of help, too.
  2. I love that you can do something just because you want to and not because you want any glory from it, and then you can blame it on Santa. And that it's perfectly okay to remain anonymous for it.
  3. I love the twinkle in my little girl's eye. And how to her, this time of year spells endless opportunities and magic. In her eyes, anything is possible at Christmas time. And I love how it wears off on me. Everything becomes a little brighter, a little more mystical, and a little more possible this time of year.
  4. I love the GOODIES! Chocolate mice, and gingerbread men (I admit those are more fun to make than to eat) and fudges and candies and cookies galore, and spice cakes. Mmmmmm...
  5. I love the excuse to make things. So often I come up with some excuse to let my crafting wait for another day. But at Christmas time, I get to dust off the old ingenuity and enjoy. Especially these past 2 Christmases. My mother made a challenge for all of us last year that everyone should try to make their gifts homemade instead of store bought, and WOW, what a way to celebrate Christmas. It puts the meaning back in the gifts. Each and every gift MEANT something last year. Be it the cookbooks I typed up or the quilt my sister made. Everything was personal, again. And ever since, I've decided to keep it that way. At least for as long as I have the sanity to do so...

When I Grow Up...

I interrupt my regular posting to tell you about a woman who inspires me. She is everything I hope to be, and I've been thinking about her all week! Mostly because I've seen her everywhere all week. This woman inspires me, and I hope to be more like her some day. Let me explain...

This woman runs in races. She has organized so many community events. She is raising the most polite and entertaining children I've met. She inspires the youth with her testimony. She not only serves on the school PTO board, but also the Friends of the Library committee meetings, and she used to do all of this while also being the President of her ward Young Woman program. And her kids are priceless! Everyone knows them, because everyone is so in love with them. Especially the middle child, who just brightens up a room. She's 4, I think, and very NOT shy. This little girl has such a great countenance, the type that can bring Scrooge and Oscar the Grouch to belly laughs. And Her older and younger children are the same way.

This woman teaches me how to save. Her family will be going to Disneyland this summer. Any guesses on how the trip was funded? They walked throughout their neighborhood many MANY MANY times and found old cans. Their trip to Disneyland is a result of LOTS of work saving up cans to fund the way. I mean think of how many cans that is!

And I've heard from SO MANY young women that she is an example to them. I don't blame them. She's an example to ME!

When I grow up, I want to be a lot like her. I want people to know what I stand for, I want to do things that are hard, I want to make a difference in my community, in my church, and to my children. She inspires me to be better.

Why My Mother Doesn't Let Me Take Pictures...

It's an inside joke at my house that cameras hate me. And I believe it. I'm wondering if I had a better camera if it would fix the problem (mine's really not that good, but it was given to me and I'm glad I have it because I was having to use my cell phone), but I am starting to wonder if it really IS all me. I know part of the problem is that I jerk every time I take pictures (I need to build up the muscles in my arms, I think...), but other than that, I have no idea.

So, you think I'm over-exaggerating? Let me show you...

Attempt #1
Overexposure. I assumed this meant there's too much flash. A COMMON problem with my camera.

Attempt # 2

So I turned the flash off. That should solve the problem, right? But whenever I turn the flash off, my camera wont focus! Gah! I try it anyway.

Attempt #3

And then I think, well, maybe if I just hold really still.... And it's still blurry.

Attempt #4

So I turn the flash back on, and once again, it's over-exposed.

Attempt #5 

So I resort to holding still again. And it's at least KINDA in focus... sorta.

Attempt #6

So I try to come up with a solution, like maybe if I put my finger over the flash it'll diffuse it a little. This is funny. You know how when you hold your hand up to a flashlight, it's red? Same effect. 

Attempt #7

With flash again, but this time I taped a piece of paper over the flash. I must admit this is the best by far. But there's gotta be SOME sort of solution...

Attempt #8

I'm about to give up. Maybe just one more...

Attempt # 9

Attempt # Am I done yet?

well, this isnt my favorite picture, It's not very well presented. My mice are MUCH cuter. There's gotta  be a way to capture it's cuteness. Bakerella does it, I should be able to. Maybe if I get a front view...

Attempt # I've lost count...

And again with the out of focus thing!

Attempt # Frustrated beyond reason

Fine. I'll take it. 

Questions: What is Your Favorite Christmas Treat?

Okay, are you ready for blogging overload? Sorry to all the people I'm going to annoy today by playing major blog catchup, but I FINALLY have treats! :c)

These guys are my favorite Christmas treat. Christmas mice. I've been so hectic, I wanted to make this a tutorial, but today I just dont feel like doing it. Mostly because I've got so much catch up to do. These mice are made from kisses, almonds, and cherries dipped in chocolate. Then I added eyes and noses with melted dipping chocolate. It's a family tradition, and I love that everyone loves them too much to eat. Plus, they're super yummy. 

I tried using the candycane kisses this year, and still think I like the classics best. 

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Questions: Where will you be spending Christmas Day?

Below the mistletoe!

What, do you think I'd actually give out information like that? To all my raving fans? hehe, just kidding. 

But I might just have plans for that mistletoe this year... 

Questions: What Does Your Tree Look Like?

Like this:

Flash on                                                                                                  
Flash off

Yeah, about that one row of missing lights. Ranger says he'll help. I bet it'll get put back in the box without that row fixed. What do you think?

Every other year, I have come up with a theme for my tree (yeah, I have THAT many ornaments), but this year I just picked out my favorites. 

In the past it's been red and gold, red and silver, blue and frosted/silver, red and green, and last year it was pink, red, green, and blue (thanks to some ornaments my dad gave me. All glittery and "mod").  

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Questions: What is your favorite Christmas song?

How on earth can I pick just one song? There are so many good Christmas songs and so many moods. But I was able to narrow it down to these three. And I refuse to narrow it down any more than that...

1. Secret of Christmas

Disregard the pictures. Listen to the song. The video streaming through MY head for this song is a bunch of elementary school kids surrounding me while we all sing this song for our parents. But OBVIOUSLY I'm not going to find any footage I can put on the blog for THAT, and nothing else is going to compare.

I sang this song every year in elementary school. It was a tradition. And I think that has a lot to do with why it is one of the top 3. Problem is, it's virtually unknown, so there's not many ways to share it with others.
Look at the happy people.
Christmas is in the air.
I know the secret of Christmas,
A secret I'm willing to share.

It's not the glow you feel, when snow appears.
It's not the Christmas card, you've sent for years.
Not the joyful sound, when sleigh bells ring.
Or the merry songs, children sing.

The little gift you send, on Christmas day
Will not bring back the friend, you turned away.
So may I suggest, the secret of Christmas:
It's not the things you do at Christmas time,
But the Christmas things you do all year through.
 2. Breath of Heaven (Mary's Song).

 How could you NOT love Breath of Heaven? I think it is one of EVERYONE's favorites. At least at one time or another. It has a way of putting into words what you cant seem to express otherwise, and really makes you think of all Mary had to go through.

I have traveled many moonless night.
Cold and weary, with a babe inside.
And I wonder what I've done.
Holy Father, You have come
And chosen me now
To carry Your Son.

I am waiting in a silent prayer.
I am frightened by the load I bear.
In a world as cold as stone,
Must I walk this path alone?
Be with me now
Be with me now

Breath of heaven
Hold me together.
Be forever near me.
Breath of heaven
Breath of heaven
Light up my darkness,
Pour over me your holiness,
For You are holy.

Breath of heaven

Do you wonder, as You watch my face,
If a wiser one one should have had my place?
But I offer all I am
For the mercy of Your plan.
Help me be strong
Help me be
Help me

3. Carol of the Bells.

I've always been in awe of the Carol of the Bells. There's something oddly mesmerizing by all the different parts and vocal ranges in this song. I love how the song is not complete without all the individual pieces.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Questions: What is your favorite Christmas movie?

Up until last year, the cartoon version of How the Grinch Stole Christmas would have won by a landslide. I preformed the play in high school, and LOVED it. I loved the message, too. Christmas doesnt come from a store. Christmas means just a little bit more.

But that was up until last year. Then I watched the Forgotten Carols. And it seriously changed everything. 

I dont know if I can explain it. It just came at the right time for me. First of all, I realized something profound. It had been a LONG time since I'd looked anyone in the eyes. A long time. And I realized that fact as I watched this movie. Why? because I looked at the characters' eyes. And was shocked. I realized how much you can tell about a person by looking at their eyes. You can tell what people are thinking, how they're feeling. You can tell what they're really like. And then I thought about my ex's eyes. And how cold and empty they were. There was no light in his eyes whatsoever. And I realized I didnt want that in my life. I also asked myself WHY I hadn't looked anyone in the eyes. And it helped me realize how toxic my old relationship actually was. And it changed me. I set new goals for myself, new expectations and new dreams. 

Secondly, I realized that I was done feeling lost. I felt like I was one of those people singing "I cannot find my way." So when Jeff McLean sang that we can all find our way if we look to the star, I felt like I had my answer. I knew how to find my way.

Thirdly, I was moved by the last song of the movie. "Ive been given what I need." I realized that even though things werent going the way I wanted, they were going forward. I was given the chance to count my blessings instead of focus on my problems. When I heard the song, I asked myself if it was true, had I really been given what I needed? And then I noticed how strong I'd become, more spiritual, and more focused. I realized that my needs really had been met, and that in the long run, I would be happier than if my ex had stayed. 

Questions: Which Reindeer is your favorite and why?

okay, lets see...

If I had to give personalities based on the names, this is what I'd come up with:

  • Dasher: Hasty and sporadic. He leaps before he thinks, is impulsive, and very driven. Although usually victorious,  such victory is often a near-miss, and a result of sheer determination not to give up. He often gets himself in situations he shouldn't, nearly avoiding danger. He also makes a bold leader, and is very determined. Often called a wild card. (Personalities similar to Artemis Fowl and Wolverine)
  • Dancer: A dreamer. Fluid and elegant. No sharp edges or sporadic chaos. Likes things orderly, but isn't controlled by the need for order. Often well-rounded and balanced.  She gets things done, and does them with flair, but doesn't do them for selfish reasons or because she wants attention. She does them because she enjoys doing them or because they need done. She's a firm believer in doing what's right for the right reasons. 
  • Prancer: a little egoistic (as opposed to egotistic), knows the world doesn't revolve around him, but wishes it would. Doesn't think he's better than the world, but that's because he's never stopped to pay attention. Often showy and ostentatious, in a lovable sort of way. He knows how to charm the crowd. (think Tom Cruise)
  • Vixen: Saucy and sensual. If Vixen were a color, She'd be a bold, seductive red. She's the type who was born to turn heads, in a classy sort of way. She's strong and bold, confident in who she is. She's also smart and a little manipulative. She knows how to get things done and she knows how to get others to do them for her. And think it was their idea. But she's not too overpowering to the point where people get annoyed with her, she has a way of finding her way into your heart. (Personality similar to Angelina Jolie)
  • Comet: Stalwart. Doesn't quit the task until its completed. Very methodical. Sometimes known to have a temper, but surprisingly able to keep his cool. Although he has his flaws, others often only see perfection. Often driven to do things because they're right, for the good of all. (Think I Am Legend and Froto) 
  • Cupid: Well, everything I can find for a personality fitting Cupid says a lot the same things as Vixen, but to me, that's not Cupid. I'm torn to whether Cupid is bold or subtle, awkward or completely collected. To me, cupid is like pure love. If Cupid were a color, it'd be deep pink. Soft and comfortable, but whole and complete and subtly moving. Cupid is a friend to everyone. Cupid is loyal (this one can follow the Greek version of Cupid). He's willing to do anything and overcomes great obstacles for the ones he loves. [Not sure if he's more like Hercules (ironically, another mythological tale) or Alma the Younger (that fits the rebel turned good aspect that fits the Roman tales of Cupid)].
  • Donner: often called old-fashioned, Donner believes in old-world values and respect. He is a reindeer who likes complete order and is often driven to find it. Donner is a protector, but one with power. Think mafia lord or Thor the Norse god. But in a good way. 
  • Blitzen: Quick and clever. Blitzen is smart, one you could classify as a genius. He has a short temper and sharp tongue, and is often an instigator. He's a major player in revolution, which isn't always a bad thing. He's innovative and resourceful, and doesnt back down, even when the odds are stacked against him. Think Indiana Jones meets Marty McFly. 
  • Rudolf: the underdog who let it get to his head, in my opinion. A little too famous.

I guess under these descriptions, I'm definitely leaning towards Comet being my favorite. With Dancer taking a close second.

This site also has a summary of what each character's personality would be, but I didn't follow too closely with what they said.

Questions: Do you believe in Santa Claus?

Now really, how am I supposed to answer that?

Truth is, yes. Sorta. Not in the naive "Santa is real, I know it, He's gotta be, he gave me such-n-such, mommy tell them he's real" sort of thing. But I believe that Santa's spirit and influence have changed the world. I believe he keeps the spirit of giving alive. At least the REAL Santa does. Not the commercialized version of him. I believe that he motivates people to be a little more giving, a little more jolly, and a little more hopeful. I think he helps all of us set aside ourselves. He allows us to do things in his name that we may or may not have done or been willing to do in our own names.

And besides, "he" gave me an AWESOME table last year. And it SERIOUSLY made my Christmas. I cant explain how much it meant that someone thought of me. And gave me something I could not afford. Or even afford to dream about.

This is one of my favorite ornaments from my tree. I got it as a gift in High school. 

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Questions: What's on your Christmas list?

"World Peace."
"World Peace."
"Harsher punishment for parole violators, Stan..... And.... World Peace."

Ten points if you know that movie! I don't know what you'll redeem them for, but you can have the points anyway....

But seriously. My Christmas list this year:
  1. That B will know how much I love her.
  2. That I can feel organized and in control.
  3. That I can meet my own expectations.
  4. A ring. ... I can hope, right? (Actually, I sorta want this one before Christmas... We'll see.)
  5. Organization and control. 
  6. Acceptance to go back to college (gotta finish filling out the paperwork, first).
  7. Enough. Of whatever I need. Just Enough.
  8. Clean laundry.
  9. The strength I need for whatever's in my future.
  10. Understanding. I used to be good at understanding others. I've sort of lost that. I want to get it back.
  11. A ring. 
  12. Patience to wait until HE gives me the ring, instead of Me pestering him into it (probably better get this one early, too).
  13. For my friends to know how much they mean to me.
  14. Organization and control.
  15. TIME! (can I please, please get this one for Christmas! I'd give the rest back... well maybe not the ring. But everything else).
  16. An Ensign subscription (mine expired, and I just haven't  gotten around to it). 
  17. Letters. That would be the best gift (well, besides time). Just letters of what people thought of me. Some good, esteem boosting, look-back-on -during-bad-days letters. Well, assuming people think well of me, and that they'd  be esteem-boosting. I might not want them if you secretly think I'm evil (It could happen, right? :cP). ... At any rate, at least I'd know what you thought of me. :c)
  18. Cutesy stuff for my house.
  19. A perm. I don't like my hair right now. 
  20. Knowledge. I could always use more knowledge.
Now don't think I'm soliciting anything [unless you know how to get me some more Time (not to be confused with thyme,  because I think that stuff's nasty. Don't know why. I always taste mold whenever I taste it. Musta had some  bad thyme somewhere), and then I'll gladly take that! Oh, and the ring. But no one else get me that. It'd just be confusing. And what would Ranger think (he doesn't read this blog. Maybe he should)?], I am just following the prompt. How about everyone else. What's on YOUR Christmas list?

Questions: Is Christmas your favorite holiday?

Well, no, but I enjoy how it brings people closer together. I enjoy that everyone's a little more united and willing and giving. But my favorite holiday is Independence Day. First of all, because I love red and blue (Yeah, totally a girl for picking the holiday with my favorite color. Sounds like cheating). But it's true! I like the pride that red and blue bring. I love the boldness of the colors, especially together. I also enjoy all the good food. I mean, there's good food at Christmas, and it's all sugary sweet or smoked, but there's something about the light airiness of summertime food. It makes you feel good and full of energy and not sluggish like can happen with Christmas food. Christmas food is more for hibernating in the winter. July food is more for going out and adventuring. 

I also like the 4th of July because of all the memories. We used to go watch fireworks as a kid, and I used to like sitting down next to my dad. He could tell me exactly how everything worked, and I found that FASCINATING. Like how many people it took to light off one firework, or why they showed up in such n such pattern, or what made each color. He just knows that sort of stuff. 

To me, July and Christmas are 2 of the most important family times. Both bring people closer together. But you gotta admit, July's a LOT warmer. 

Christmas Posts

So I figured out something else to write about! I found THIS, and decided it would make a good prompt. So I can put off deciding what my blog's for AGAIN until after Christmas! Yay! ;c)