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For My Fellow Writers


Today I have for you guys a video game soundtrack which I discovered accidentally a couple days ago. The thumbnail made me click it, the magical wispy blue, the adorable fantasy creatures, and the overall atmosphere just grabbed me. The music itself did not disappoint. Take a listen!

This first track blew my mind. The soft piano, the orchestral richness, the angelic voice, the mysteriousness. I was immediately stolen away!

This track captures the darker side of the soundtrack, surging from softness to urgency half way through.

And I just really like this track. It’s sounds like raindrops and spring showers. It’s gentle and soothing and mysterious.

BUT HERE IS THE WHOLE SOUNDTRACK. IT’S ALL AMAZING, I STRONGLY RECOMMEND A LISTEN THROUGH BECAUSE IT’S JUST SO GOOD.❤

What video game soundtracks are your absolute favorites?

~Jamie

 

Where Blogging Brought Me


This was written last week, but its long overdue to be documented on my blog because it’s thanks to blogging that I got to find my very best friend and confident.


Right now, I’m blogging with my very best friend, at the same time! Some of you will recognize him as James from J and J Productions. We’re elbow to elbow at the moment on the couch, both typing up our posts and looking at each other’s screens.😄 We’ve been blogging friends for years and even closer best friends for over two and half years, but this is the first time where we’ve actually gotten to simultaneously write blog posts together in the same room in real time, and it’s quite fun.😄

What I’ve decided to blog about is just about us and how we ended up here, because what else should I be writing about?😉

Once upon a time, five years and seven months ago, 16-year-old me watched a movie called A New Hope and I fell in love with Star Wars. Earlier that same day, I’d literally started this blog. And after watching A New Hope, I wanted blog friends who liked Star Wars too. In that quest, I stumbled over a young blog like mine, run by a boy my age named James, and he loved movies enough to attempt reviewing them. I commented, then he commented back; we followed each other’s blogs. We both loved Star Wars. Tonight, we’re going to watch A New Hope together for the first time, and the last half a decade of our lives will come full circle for me.

Blogging and Star Wars brought us together, but Marvel made us real friends. About four years ago, I saw Captain America: The First Avenger in theaters–it was my first superhero movie–and James wrote to me saying, “hey, glad you liked it! There are more movies you should see before The Avengers comes out!” He wrote blog post after blog post, mostly for me, mentoring me in characters and films and our friendship really solidified. After the Avengers came out, we skyped every time a new Marvel film was released just to rave and hype about them.

Last week, we saw Captain America: Civil War together in 3D. THAT was surreal. That movie was like the climax of a very grand adventure that for the two of us had shared for years. We clutched hands in gasps and jumped in unison, and spazzed in hype at character introductions. I cried over a certain funeral scene and he squeezed my fingers to let me know he felt it too. We both shrieked with laughter. It was the first new Marvel movie that we did not have to message each other to say, “I’VE SEEN IT. TELL ME WHEN YOU DO SO WE CAN TALK SPOILERS.” We finally saw a Marvel movie right.😄

Marvel made us real friends, but anime made us pretty much inseparable in 2014. We skyped every week to discuss new anime episodes and that was the platform that helped us become the best of friends. Anime, which so rich in life and emotion and fantastic storytelling, gave us so many avenues to connect and discuss ethics and beliefs and our own lives. We built trust and solid communication skills as we spent time together goofing off and enjoying conversation. Over the last two years, we were especially able to be there for each other when life got rough on the other. And finally about seven months ago we decided enough was enough, and began to plan how we could meet in person.

This past week, after five years of blog comments, movie and anime rants, and 10,000 skype calls, I’ve flown to Georgia so I can see my very best friend in person instead off of a screen. After an early morning rise, a three hour flight and turbulence, we met in the Atlanta airport and it was incredibly surreal. We were both in Star Wars shirts and I almost knocked him over hugging him the moment I saw him.😀

I think we felt like us by the time we were dragging my 49 pound suitcase to the car. I pushed it on its rollers up the ramp while insisting I was as strong as Thor and could handle it, through huffs and giggles. He scrambled behind me pointing me in the direction we needed to go and freaking out that I was going to trip and tumble over the suitcase. I got to the car and exclaimed, “It’s humid” and he grinned, rolled his eyes and said, “Yep!” It was hysterical.😄

The trip so far has been amazing and I’ve felt so at home. I was made welcome by his family immediately too. When we reached his home, his grandmother was standing there with open arms almost as soon as I was out of the car, and everyone is all smiles and making sure I’m comfortable. By day two, everyone said it felt I’d always been there. It feels amazing to fit in so well!❤

I love being here with my best friend. We hug a lot; we can’t believe the other is real. I’ve never been so grateful to be with someone in the flesh. We spent the first days marveling how the other looked in 3D instead of 2D on a screen.😄 And awesomely, we get along better than we’d hoped in person! He’s less smug😄 and apparently, I’m more sweet in person.😄 We’ve already watched a lot of anime in person, and of course seeing a Marvel movie together just put us on cloud nine.

I’d singing his praises, but this post is already incredibly long, so I’ll save that for another day.❤

I can’t wait to spend the next few days with this guy. I’ll blog more when I come home, but for now I best enjoy where it’s brought me so far.😉❤

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my favorite picture of us, taken directly after the end of watching Star Wars: A New Hope.

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I’m home now and I’m getting ready to publish this. I will write more about my visit another day, but for now, this is where blogging for the past five years has brought me. It blows my mind at the opportunities that God has allowed me to have. I’m incredibly thankful to be able to visit my best friend at all, all the way from Arizona to Georgia. And we just had to blog at least once together, because hey, so much can happen just from blogging.😉

~Jamie

Currently: On the Verge of Summer Vacation


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Currently listening: If There’s Time by Odesza. Slightly obsessed with this song because it starts so chill… and then suddenly it just grows into more.❤

Currently sitting: on my computer chair at my desk, with an open suitcase behind me on my bed and lists of things to do in front of me on the desk.😄

Currently liking: that I’m about to go on the first real vacation, tomorrow, since maybe early 2013???? I don’t know, but it’s long overdue, and I’ve really wanted one after the parents divorcing/lots of stress stuff LOL. But the best part is that I get to go spend this one meeting and staying with my best friend! THE HYPE IS REAL. So yeah. Really liking that!

Currently drinking: I’m at the tail end of a cold, so, water. So much water. Gallons of water. An ocean’s worth. ok that’s exaggerating; but yeah, water.😄

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Currently reading: I’m still reading A Gathering of Shadows. Been reading it on and off while waiting for my bus rides to and from school. Loving it though, and about to really chomp into it tomorrow during the long plane ride!

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A photo posted by Jamie (@jamie2211b) on

Currently writing: I’m actually about to start a new story! A mystery adventure novella set on an island, following a down-on-her-luck writer and a documentary team secretly investigating… something. I don’t know what. I will find out with my characters though. But horses on the beach and camera crews and lonely highways in forgotten forests and crime families and espionage should all be included.XD

Currently watching: Breaking Bad still; at the beginning of season four. NO SPOILERS PLEASE.😄 Am slowly making my way through this classic. I was madly watching it for the first two seasons; but then season three went an odd direction so I slowed down (and then there was an episode that triggered me and I couldn’t watch it for like a month.) But it’s still a great show and I’m trying to savor it so it’s not over too fast.

Currently obsessed with: Odesza, actually! I discovered them from a long youtube mix and I just fell in love with the electronica vibe. JUST, THANK YOU GOD FOR SO MUCH DIVERSE AMAZING MUSIC TO LISTEN TO. #Music:ForeverMySoulMate

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Currently tired: of coughing.😄 it’s clinging to the back of my throat with an annoying tickle and then every time I go to giggle, I cough instead. >__> Like, could you not, I’m trying to feel joy.😉

Currently excited: THAT I’M TAKING A PLANE BY MYSELF TO GO SEE MY VERY BEST FRIEND FOR THE VERY FIRST TIME EVER. I’M SO HYPED. AJSKDLFJAKSLJFKALSJDFKASLDJKFALSJKFDJALSDFJLASJFLASJD.

Currently failing: actually, can I please take a moment to say that this semester I DID NOT FAIL BUT ACTUALLY GOT AN “A” IN MATH!?!?!?!?! LIKE WHOOP WHOOP FOR ME.

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Currently scaring myself with: flying… ok, I am a teeny bit nervous about getting through airport security and stepping on a plane, but I think that’s pretty normal. Last time I flew, I actually quite enjoyed the adrenaline rush it carried, so I’m looking forward to that again! Flying, when you don’t think of crashing, is really the best fun. XD

Currently stuck in my head: I actually had a Kpop song stuck in my head earlier but I don’t remember the name at the moment. Oh well.

Currently wishing: to have the best next week and half ever in Georgia!❤

Currently praying: that I have two safe flights leaving and coming home and that my vacation will be smooth for everyone involved.❤ I’m so so hyped, you guys! Pray for me tomorrow morning, I’ll be in the air!

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I love you all!

~Jamie

Soundtrack of my Childhood P2


Today I’m again looking at music from my childhood, this time focusing on soundtracks from computer games. I wrote a Part 1 awhile ago, which focused on music from movies and children’s tv, if you missed it. I might follow this post up eventually with songs from musicals and classical music too.😄

So, what computer game soundtracks did you think we might share?😉

Lego Games

Lego Island. Lego Island WAS AMAZING and anybody who’s played it can testify to that LOL. The soundtrack is embedded in my memory because I played it so much. I also spent extra time trying to catch The Brickster just to enjoy the music that played over. XD *has an intense nosebleed from the unleasehd due to watching the opening*

Rock Raiders. I actually might have spent more time with Rock Raiders because you had to COMPLETE THOSE MISSIONS. CURSE THOSE ROCK MONSTERS AND SLUGS.😄 The music really stood out to me too. I would sit on the menu screens just to enjoy it. (Funny fact: I have written book scenes within the last year to the menu music of Rock Raiders for the AMAZING CREEPY CAVE AMBIANCE.)

Lego Chess. I learned chess because of this game and I loved the music and movies. I WANT AN OLD COMPUTER JUST TO REVISIT THESE VISUALS. WHY WERE THESE GAMES NEVER UPDATED. THE TRAGEDY. ALL I HAVE LEFT IS THE MUSIC.😦

The Lost Mind of Dr. Brain

The Lost Mind of Dr. Brain. I actually can’t find the music alone, so just click through this video and hear the music of the game that made me smarter.😄 I played this game a lot as a young child, so I have strong ties to the quirky musical cues. It was the one game I actually completed entirely. Not even my parents had been able to finish it as far as I know. So it made me feel smart.😄 Will be forever ticked off that it’s too old to play on any modern computers.

Pro-Pinball Games

Pro-pinball Timeshock. I really liked this game and its music. Track Six actually got my twelve-year-old writer’s brain churning a few times: I remember triggering the music within game and then just sitting there to process the music to the story in my head. You guys, I’m realizing I did that A LOT as a kid.😄

Big Race USA. Ahhhhh memories…. just, great memories! There’s actually not much to say to this game except that I REALLY reminds me of playing at the huge wooden computer desk in the front living room switching seats with my sister while we took turns playing. And I thought the Speedbump theme was awesome.😄

Happily, these games manage to run on Windows 10! So I still revisit them sometimes!❤

War Games

People’s General. Ok, this maybe tops the cake. Because I never actually learned how to play this game. Literally, I ONLY EVER POPPED IT INTO THE COMPUTER TO LISTEN TO THE FREAKING MUSIC BECAUSE IT WAS EPIC AND AWESOME AND I LOVED IT. I still love it actually. It’s got some pretty epic war themes which kept my young writer’s mind very happy.

Army Men II. Ok, I actually did play this game growing up, maybe as young as nine? I can still remember army men melting on the stove, killing cockroaches, trying to run my guys across a garden, and learning the word bazooka. I liked this game very much, although I never beat the final bedroom level. But I’ll never forget the “You Loose” montage videos, or all the very classy classical music that played in the background.😄 *thinks William Tell while racing across a kitchen counter top looking for mysterious blue portal.*

Arcade Games

Mappy. MAPPY. I WAS MASTER OF THIS GAME. I LOVED THIS GAME SO MUCH.


Well, do we share any computer game soundtracks? Anybody else play other games like Oregon Trail games? Motocross Madness? SOME OF YOU MUST HAVE PLAYED THE LEGO GAMES. What do we have in common?!❤

~Jamie

3 Ways to Make Facebook Enjoyable


So, I’ve been more active on my personal Facebook lately. In fact, this past year, I put a little time into making my Facebook dashboard a place I want to see, instead of the place I want to avoid. Because, you know, it’s my generation’s joke that Facebook is the last place you want to be. Noisy relatives, politics everywhere, just ugh…Facebook. It’s the social media site for “older people” now.😄

I still feel that way about Facebook on occasion, but during the last few months, I took some time getting used to how the site worked and allowing myself FREEDOM to make it mine. Want to know my tricks? Well here’s how I did it.

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1. I did NOT accept all the friend requests I had.

And I still don’t. This is hard to do; depending on the person, you might feel strong obligations to press accept even though you grimace at the sight of their Facebook wall. (I wish Facebook was like Twitter in that you don’t have to MUTUALLY SEE EACH OTHER’S CRAP IF YOU DON’T WANT TOO.) However, I made the choice that, even if it felt kinda awkward to delete that lady who I knew from church’s request, it ultimately was completely my decision to not have her guilt-tripping political reposts spamming my feed.

I have given myself the freedom to set boundaries or say that quiet “no thank you” in regards to the friend requests and it was very empowering! In this way, I have managed to keep that horrid spam of, “JESUS WILL BE SAD IF YOU DON’T SHARE THIS POST, HIT THUMBS UP NOW,” crap to a minimum on my dash. Now I see less negativity and garbage, and I love it.

I know not everyone might feel like they can just turn down friend requests, but I do strongly recommend always thinking about what you want to allow into your space. Surround yourself with healthy people and remove unhealthy people, just like you would offline too.❤

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2. I followed pages that post engaging and unique content that interested me.

One of the things that makes me excited to visit Facebook is that I now follow pages of COOL STUFF. Stuff that’s creative or inspiring, quotes and art and funnies, stuff I WANT TO ACTUALLY LIKE AND SHARE ON MY OWN PAGE. I took two different afternoons, and spent lots of time investigating and following page suggestions till I’d found and followed all the ones I liked. It took time, but it was worth it.

To list just a couple of my very favorites, I follow The Best of Tumblr, Word PornPersonality Growth, Quotes n’ Nd NotesLike a Boss Girls, Brain Pickings, and Laughing Squid. I get a constant new cycle of relatable and shareable quotes, unique and creative creations, and the best funnies ever from these places everyday. I share things from them often.

These and many others, like Food Network, Ellen DeGeneres, The Tonight Show, and Stan Lee’s page, fill my dash with new fun stuff, spreading out the political/religious barrage of junk that always seeps through no matter what. It makes me want to keep scrolling!

This ultimately was a huge game changer to making Facebook more enjoyable and I’m so glad I took the time to find fresh new content to enjoy.

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3. I’m not afraid to share what I enjoyed seeing.

I know it’s annoying, that you see everything everybody likes and shares, but guess what. Two can play that game. I got tired of being sensitive of how I interacted on Facebook, afraid so-and-so wouldn’t like that I “liked” that post.

One day I stopped giving a crap. Other people, other Christians, other ADULTS, aren’t afraid to share the stupidest, lowest quality, guilt-tripping crap day in and day out… so why I should be scared to share a quote that I related too? So, I adopted a new motto for just Facebook: INTERACT WITH WHAT YOU ENJOY. DO IT BECAUSE YOU WANT TO. AND HELP CIRCULATE SOME BRAIN CELLS.

LOL ok, is that going to far? Nah, I didn’t think so.😄

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These are just three things I’ve done the last few months that have helped make my Facebook page a place that I want to interact on. I surprise myself by how often I check it now, and I enjoy sharing things and interacting with different friends on different posts about things I actually like. It’s become another place of self-expression, by being unafraid to share things I enjoy, which is empowering and encouraging to my growing identity as a young adult.

I like Facebook now. And that’s something I never thought would happen.😉

How about you? Do you still loathe Facebook? Have you every tried one of these tricks to make it a cheerier place? 

~Jamie