Because I’ve Been Sick…


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Although I wanted my Studio Ghibli post to be next in line here, I haven’t been able to give it proper attention during my cold, so an update post will simply have to do.

If we want to go back to around my birthday; I had a smashing one but life as a twenty year old brings on more reminders that life is harsh and brutal–for example, I was stung on the shoulder in my sleep by a scorpion. My family has lived with scorpions in the house for five years–spraying them outside, smashing them or catching them in jars and sticky traps inside–but I’m the first to actually be stung.

If you’ve ever wondered what a scorpion sting feels like–when it happened it felt like I’d been shocked by electricity! There’s no mark left on the skin, which confused me when I jumped out of bed and tried to look at it in the mirror. My shoulder (and finger, as I’d tried to scratch myself in my sleep and disturbed the scorpion, who must have climbed on my shoulder) felt both hot, tingly, and numb, and it was very very painful.

Over the phone, poison control had me take ibuprofen and keep a cool washcloth on the area (no ice! they said, no ice!) Thankfully, outside of a lot of crying, some swelling, and hot pain, I did not develop other symptoms like swelling throat and tongue and I didn’t have to go to the hospital. It was a rather traumatic experience; Mom and I found the little devil under my bed the next night and did away with it. My room is full of fresh traps and my bed is pulled away from the wall so they can’t reach me that way. :)

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My Lord of the Rings readers will be happy to hear that I bought the extended versions of the LOTR Trilogy after my birthday and so far have seen Fellowship of the Ring. Although I can’t say that film instantly turned me into a Ringer, I did enjoy it to a degree and look forward to watching The Two Towers. So far my favorite characters are Frodo, Gandalf, and Sam. I didn’t really connect with any of the other characters and I’ll be waiting for the next two movies to do their job and make me care about them. :)

I’ve been redoing my old bedroom upstairs so I can move back into it. Boy, after that scorpion in my room downstairs, I’m ready to leave the basement as soon as possible! I’ve spent several days preparing it for fresh coat of paint–mostly by myself! There was a lot to do, like stripping wallpaper, filling nail holes, washing the walls and baseboards, cleaning the fan, and picking new curtains for the windows. I would have started painting expect that 1) the upstairs air conditioning quit and would have made painting a misery and 2) I caught this wretched cold.

Summer colds are awful because it’s like, where did you come from?! It’s not winter-y and cold, why is there a cold going around?! I bitterly hate colds. Murder mysteries of Miss Marple and Hecule Poirot, Ghibli, and Youtube has kept me company in my room during the day and Finding Nemo and Peter Pan during the night. I even rewatched the two epics The Ten Commandments and Camelot. I will hopefully get to The Two Towers before long as well. I’m hoping to be better soon so I can get back to working on the room, school, and my normal schedule. Right now I’m past the horrid sore throat phase and in the even worse congested nose and hacking cough phase.

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Because I’ve been sick, I have had a chance to watch YouTube and discover trailers for upcoming movies. Since seeing Guardians of the Galaxy (more on that later!), I’ve not really had anything to look forward to in the film world besides Age of Ultron and Mockingjay Part 1. Except, now I do; I’ve linked to each trailer below! While I will probably watch most of these at home with DVDs, I’m still very excited as the genres are wide in variety, from zombie, to several different types of thrillers, to WWII, to a vampire, a British spy thriller, to westerns, to Biblical epics, romances, to just movies featuring actors I know like Dan Stevens! I’m really pumped for many of these and I hope they hold up!

The upcoming films Fury (starring Brad Pitt, Logan Lerman, Shai La Beouf and Jon Bernthall of The Walking Dead), The Homesman (starring Tommy Lee Jones and Hillary Swank), Horns (starring Daniel Radcliffe),  The Guest (starring Dan Stevens of Downton Abbey!), Dracula Untold, Life After Beth (starring Aubrey Plaza and Dane DeHane!), Kingsman: The Secret Service (with Samuel L Jackson and Michael Caine), A Walk Among the Tombstones (starring Liam Neeson and Dan Stevens again!), Exodus: Gods and Kings (starring Christian Bale as Moses!), and several others all have me very excited! All the trailers look great and appeal to me in some shape or fashion and I can’t wait to watch them all! It will be interesting if I like any of them enough to add to my DVD collection.

Speaking of my DVD collection, I was able to get some DVDs after my birthday that I’d been wanting and it was very exciting! Saving all my money really paid off. Besides The Extended Versions of Lord of the Rings, I bought My Neighbor Totoro, Ponyo, The Secret World of Arrietty, Porco Rosso, Whisper of the Heart, Howl’s Moving Castle, and Kiki’s Delivery Service so that my little brother could watch them whenever he wants to and have a proper childhood experience. Totoro and Ponyo especially have made a great impact on his movie life and he rewatches them all the time. I adore them strongly myself and look forward to playing them all often! More on them all soon!

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And before I finish, as I said above, I got to see Guardians of the Galaxy on it’s first Friday in theaters! I went by myself and had popcorn and Sprite and propped by feet up on the chair in front of me. Outside of a few quibbles, I thoroughly enjoyed the film and highly recommend everyone who is interested to go see it while it’s still in the theater as it’s a fantastic experience! Chris Pratt as Peter Quill was my favorite character, along with Groot. The whole team, actually, was really great. Outside of my problem with some of Rocket’s dialouge, some of which I just couldn’t buy, it was overall incredibly hysterical, breathtaking, surprisingly emotional, and just fifty gallons worth of fun! Definition of an instant classic. :)

Well, I’m running out of things to say. So let’s end here on a strong note. GO WATCH THAT MOVIE. :) And keep me in your prayers, I really do hate being sick. :(

~Jamie

Busting Writer’s Block with Thankfulness


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I’m thankful for self control–it was hard not spending my money for the past five or six months since January but the delayed gratification was very worth it! When my birthday came and I was able to go on shopping sprees without emptying my bank account–that was satisfying! It definitely made the whole occasion more special! Self control pays off.

I’m thankful for temporary tattoos. I consider tattoos, especially real ones, to be such a fascinating art form. I myself have yet to host any serious thoughts on getting a real tattoo, so temporary tats are perfect for the now. Especially ones that sparkle. :)

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I’m thankful for Netflix. I can keep my favorite shows close *hackingcough-Family Guy-The Office-Adventure Time-The Walking Dead-Warehouse 13-cough* and discover new ones too *cough-Parks and Recreation-anime-anime-anime-Princess Jellyfish-Fate/Zero-Ouran-anime-anime-anime-PARKS AND RECREATION-cough* (Also I discovered two of my most favorite movies ever on Netflix: Thelma and Louise and Clue.

I’m thankful for piano finger warm ups. They are fun and challenging without being overwhelming, so they’re an overall encouragement to my piano playing.

I’m thankful for the Internet. Not only is it full of interesting nooks, sources of income, and fun entertainment, but also can host things like blogs and Skype. One of my favorite things is getting to make new friends and keep in touch with old ones. I mean, the Internet has it’s downfalls, but I’m looking at the bright side here and this is a big bright side.

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I’m thankful for the rain storms. My part of town has had at least three good storms the past month, which is more than the past few years. I LOVE IT; I wish it rained more! It smells so good. The mood it sets is fantastic for writing or getting stuff done. It makes the air more invigorating, the ground more green, and life just more exciting–at least, here in the Tatooine desert!

I’m thankful for that crackling soda fizz that lingers in the throat after you drink too much at once. It’s sharp but I always go back for more because it’s just such a small but fun delightful part of day-to-day life. It makes the slow moments more special.

~Jamie

PS. Also snap bracelets!

Liebster 2.0 (a sorta birthday edition!)


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(Note: I’ve redone my blog theme! I needed a change even though I loved the old old. I do like the new header feature: I was able to find many free, fabulously high quality pictures to use. Refresh or jump through my pages to see the different pictures I found!)

No matter how many times this blog award comes around (and it seems to come around a lot!) I always flip out when I see that I’ve been tagged by someone and that they thought of me! That feels so good! And today I thought I would use the latest tag to share some of the awesome stuff that happened over the past few days around my 20th birthday!

A big thank you, first, to Miranda for tagging me! And–just a quick plug! I don’t follow fashion or photography blogs; it’s just not my main interest–well, okay, except for just ONE blog and that is Little Gold Pocket Watch. I discovered this blog when it was just starting out and I absolutely loved Miranda’s photos and outfits. She has the brightest smile and the sweetest online voice! She recently came back from a blogging hiatus which made me really happy. Thanks for tagging me, Miranda!

My Eleven Birthday Facts:

1. I helped buy myself a brand new laptop for my birthday; a shiny touchscreen Windows 8 laptop! I’m still figuring out the short cuts, but it’s so beautiful, thin, and shiny! I know I will be using it to the max! It actually got me to really notice Kindle, so I’ll be reading a few books on there as well now (including my friend Rebekah’s latest released book Journeys of Four! I’m so excited to read the published version!)

2. Kayla and I saw “Lucy” together on Friday as an extension of my birthday; I ate Chiclets (sorry, fellow movie goers, that the candy rattled so loudly) and we soaked in Scarlet Johanson’s awesomeness. (The movie itself was enjoyable but I wouldn’t go out of your way to see it at theaters.)

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3. I had my favorite foods on my birthday; hamburgers with chips and ambrosia salad (Aunt Linda, it was your recipe and it was so good!) and Chinese! Fool’s Toffee and pink lemonade also made guest appearances. :P Oh, and doughnuts for breakfast.

4. I watched four movies on my birthday–I multi-tasked through them, of course. I played Porco Rosso for Nathan while I updated my new computer system and installed an anti-virus–Nathan enjoyed it a lot, which made me happy. Then Kayla and I watched Shaun of the Dead, Murder by Death, and Clue all that evening. It was awesome.

5. My sister was very generous this year with birthday presents; gifting me with The Deathly Hallows Parts 1 and 2, The Cornetto Trilogy, Murder by Death, The Croods, Harry Potter posters, Captain America The Winter Soldier poster, Hot Topic gift card, and some beauty products! I was floored!  I <3 Kayla.

6. This is the second year in a row where I’ve received a zombie film for my birthday. I would like to keep this tradition up if possible.

7. After my birthday, Kayla chauffeured me around to a few stores I had gift cards too; I made out like a bandit at Target with a magnetic white board with accessories to plot stories on and keep day to day notes in sight, to brand new headphones, Catching Fire, Despicable Me 2, school supplies and Lindsey Stirling’s latest album Shatter Me! Her music is fantastic!

8. On my birthday morning, I planned to sleep in but ended up waking up at about 6:30 and was unable to fall back asleep. 8-O

9. I got one dollar shipping on Hot Topic’s website and I was so thrilled! Ordered myself two Adventure Time tops for my new favorite Cartoon Network fandom and a couple other things too!

10. Besides the four movies, I and the family also watched Duck Dynasty during dinner. SO MUCH TV.

11. I had a fantastic birthday, not a bad thing happened and everything was very enjoyable. :)

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Miranda asked some great questions, several that I’ve never had to answer before here on my blog so I’m excited to answer them now!

1) What is your personal style like? I’m now usually in a jeans and t-shirt style but I also like to wear some nicer tops and capri pants. Overall, I’m very relaxed and wear comfortable clothes with Minions or fandom related things on them. X) So, I suppose I’m a pretty casual dresser overall.

2) What got you interested in blogging? Writing on my mom’s blog back in 2010 got me interested in starting my own personal blog–along with reading other girls blogs during that same year. I’ve always liked to write so it definitely appealed to my strengths!

3) Any pet peeves? Several–besides the ones listed in this post–include people leaving shopping carts just outside the cart holder instead of taking the extra two steps to put it out of the way and going to a store (and now at the theater!) where there are lots places to be checking out (or in!) people but the store is only utilizing one or two, making everyone wait longer then they need. SERIOUSLY WALMART. YOU HAVE ABOUT 35 CHECK OUT SPACES AND YOU CAN’T AFFORD TO HAVE MORE THAN FIVE OF THEM OPEN AT A TIME? I DON’T HAVE TIME TO STAND BEHIND SOME FINICKY PERSON WITH THEIR COUPONS AND THREE OVERLOADED CARTS. Well, thank goodness for self checkout.

4) Celebrity crush? So, the very, very, very first name to pop into my head when I read this question was Benedict Cumberbatch. Heehee. Others would include Tom Hiddleston, Nicholas Hoult, Chris Evans, Simon Pegg and Sylvester Stallone.

5) If you could go back in time, which era would you choose? Gaslamp Victorian England. The classic Sherlock Holmes time period! And then maybe visit the 20’s, 40’s, and 50’s afterwards out of pure curiosity…

6) Morning hair and makeup routine? With my hair on the shorter side now, I usually will throw on a band to keep it out of my eyes. I actually don’t have a makeup routine as I rarely wear any, however I’m practicing with eyeliner. I suppose the closest thing I have to a makeup routine is applying some EOS lip balm on my lips before moving on with my day to keep them moist.

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7) Favorite movie? CLUE. There are few movies that I can rewatch over and over and over again and not get bored of; Clue is one of them. Much more recent favorites also include The Cornetto Trilogy and Studio Ghibli’s My Neighbor Totoro, Ponyo, and The Secret World of Arrietty; the former are a fantastic comedy/satirical set of British films and the latter some of the best animated films I’ve ever seen.

8) Where have you not traveled that you would like to visit and why? London, England. Hands down number one place I’d love to visit!

9) Morning person or night owl? Although I am trying to get my morning scheduled arranged so I’m getting up earlier, I am definitely more a night owl! I love staying up late!

10) What’s something you’re passionate about besides blogging? I really love animals. I’m not all high on animal rights or being a vegetarian or anything, I simply, really enjoy the company and energy I receive from just about any animal. I would love to work with animals more often.

11) What is one of your life goals, big or small? A big term goal, which I actually just accomplished, was to save money for six months to keep my bank account from emptying out and I was able to do it!! It feels really good to save money! A small term goal is try watching more anime-there are several shows on Netflix that my anime sensei has informed me are well worth the watch and he’s yet to steer me to a bad piece of media. ;)

Tagging, tagging, I FEEL LAZY BUT TAGGING CAN BE SO HARD. :P The first eleven people to comment on this post can answer these 7 questions on their own blogs or in the comments if they so wish.

Do you sleep with your bedroom door open or shut?

Have you ever won a contest of any kind? If you have, what was it?

If you could build something out of Legos right now without all typical obstacles, what you would build?

What’s your favorite type/flavor of gum?

If you choose between visiting the moon and mars, which would go to?

What is the scariest movie scene you remember seeing when you were little?

What’s your favorite theme song?

~Jamie

This Summer’s Bucketlist


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What I’ve already done:

Rewatched Death Note | Began watching Studio Ghibli films | Attended my first Comic Con | Gave Parks and Recreation a try (and it’s awesome!) | Read more books to my brother | Completed the 100 Favorite Movies blog series | Caught up with Doctor Who | Skyped with friends | Bought The Lego Movie | Learned lots of math for GED |  Discovered EOS Lip Balm | Discovered Adventure Time (also awesome!) | Entered another Booktrack contest |

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What I will now hopefully complete:

More math at school | Have an awesome birthday | Catch up with Marvel’s Agents of SHIELD | Finish the rest of the Ghibli movies | Learn Windows 8 | Play more music on the piano | Keep up my blog | Reorganize my bedroom shelves | Watch another movie at the theater | Hopefully host a giveaway at the end of summer | Give my blog it’s every-six-month makeover | Hopefully buy My Neighbor Totoro, Ponyo, and Arrietty (all awesome!) | Begin a rewrite to my futurist sci-fi short story | Read some books | Go swimming just once | Do something creative | Continue to figure out my life |

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Shameless Self-Promotion (Need Your Help)


free_texture_friday_541-1024x682_FotorrI don’t do a lot of self-promotion, so stick with me here, okay? Thank you in advance for simply reading.

Because I love the world of writing and don’t have a steady source of income, I’ve entered a couple of writing contests on Booktrack; the amazing platform where reading and audio come together. It can easily be a disaster, but with my work I try to keep the sound effects realistic and the music appropriate as I never want the audio track to distract or detract from the main point: the story. That’s what I’ve attempted to do in this latest contest hosted on Booktrack.

I don’t know that much about author Hugh Howey, but I know just from his first chapter in Half Way Home he’s a fantastic writer! Half Way Home’s opening “Abort” is very intriguing and very sci-fi! I was thrilled to hear about his contest where anyone can take one of the chapters from Half Way Home and add an audio track to be in to win up to $5,000 dollars! That’s a lot and that’s what I’d like to win. I’d even be happy being a finalists, as they win $1,000 dollars! Even though I do what I do because I love it, I have to admit I’d really love to be a winner here as the stakes are so high and the money could really help me out. And here’s where I need your help.

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behind-the-scenes view of my work

I’ve done my part; I’ve listened to the extensive library of music, edited footsteps and breaking glass and the atmosphere and played with volume levels. I’ve finished my official cover for the chapter, too (up there, see, see! Isn’t it pretty?!) Now, what would really help me is:

A) Some feedback– are there too many sound effects, what did you find overly distracting from the story, the music doesn’t work in this part, ect–just any feedback at all. I have till the end of July to finish tinkering with my entry before the contest ends and the judges begin doing their thing. Any and all critiques would be appreciated before then so I know if I need to do any little (or large!) fix ups to my story.

B) Views. To be become a finalist, the contest states that the three entries with the most amount of views will become finalists. Two more will be picked by Booktrack to make a total of five. My chances of becoming a finalist go way up the more times my story is viewed by clicking the “read” button. If you all could do that even once that would be helpful.

Here is the link to my story below; it works best on web browsers Google Chrome and Opera (both of which I use for free and really like.) You can also simply go to Booktrack and type my username Jamie221b into their search bar. My three stories will come up, this one included!

My Version of Abort: http://www.booktrack.com/#!/bookshelf?booktrackId=99220c80cdcd4cdb8df77b29c57a5545

Booktrack: http://www.booktrack.com/#!/

The Contest: http://www.booktrack.com/#!/landing/hugh-howey

And as a little bit more of an incentive for you: if I’m one of the finalists or the winner of the contest, I will be able to afford my DVD giveaway I’ve been planning on hosting here! The items I have sitting here are Seasons 5-7 of Doctor Who (seems to be everybody’s favorite!) and the first three Pirates of the Caribbean films, which everyone should see once! I’d love to be able to throw this giveaway, so the money would definitely make it a sure possibility!

While I would be very grateful if you could help me out with A) and B), I’m also not meaning to hold a gun to anyone’s head like “HELP ME NOW OR YOU’RE NOT A NICE PERSON.” You’re going to do what you’re going to do, so I’ll only be asking this once. :) If you have any questions, please ask. Again, thank you for at least reading this and have great rest of your day!

~Jamie