Sunday, December 25, 2011

Merry Christmas!!

Merry Christmas everyone! I hope that everyone has had a wonderful day in whatever your doing. Let's remember that Jesus is the reason for the season =D
This morning I got up before the crack of dawn at 4:30 AM so that I could get to the airport with my parents on time to catch our flight to the Midwest.
We took Rosey on the airplane with us and she did very well! The vet had given us a sedative to give her. When half of the pill didn't knock her out, Mom gave her the other half. Rosey fell asleep very quickly after that and is still sleeping it off! I like her in this sedate state... She doesn't get annoyed with me. Hee hee.
Now I am sitting in my grandparents living room while Mom and Grama talk and Daddy and Grandpa watch the Packers game on TV. Sadly there is no snow where I am... I did take my doll Juliet and I'll try to get outside with the next few days to take some pictures of her!

And now, here is a present from me to you.
This is my choir singing "Christmas This Year" by Tobymac. There are 88 people in my choir and we range from ages 5-18. Sorry it's in two parts.... Blogger won't let me upload the whole video.


video video

Thursday, December 22, 2011

AH-MAZ-ING!

(Don't read this unless you want some minor spoilers for the Tintin movie (I'm not giving away the end)! Also, the quotes I use from the movie aren't exactly right, but they do have the general meaning of what was being said).
My legs began to shake as I stepped out of the car and started walking towards the movie theater. After picking up our 3D glasses, my dad and I hastened into the dimly lit theater and took our seats. Now, after about a year of waiting, the moment I had been waiting for had nearly come... Only 30 minutes or previews separated me from the movie which I had come to see.
I had heard that they were going to play "The Hobbit" trailer before the Tintin movie but it wasn't played so I had to watch it at home after the movie.
Finally the previews ended. I was breathless as the movie started. There was Tintin! Or rather, Tintin's shadow. He was running, with Snowy on his heels, through the title credits. His theme music - by John Williams - accompanied him as his shadow darted in and out among streets and people and shadows of things from the Tintin books.
I was VERY impressed that the beginning credits held so much from the books. I spied the wooden figure from "The Broken Ear" and they also included many pictures from the books! At the end of the opening credits they acknowledged Herge, the author. Then.... the movie started.
It opened with Tintin in the street market being drawn by a cartoonist - Herge! As he was drawing Tintin he said,
"You look familiar, haven't I drawn you before?"
I absolutely love that line!! Then he finished the drawing of Tintin and it is the Tintin that I know and love... the comic version! I was so busy searching the background of the market for people or pictures from the books that I nearly missed the opening of the plot!
After chasing after Snowy, smoothing down his quiff and having it pop back up, and then bending down to pet Snowy, Tintin spots a model ship in the reflection of a mirror.
He turns around and after examining it, buys it from the man selling it. As soon as he puts his money down a man runs up and inquires about the price. Tintin insists that he doesn't want to sell and the man walks off, telling Tintin that the ship is nothing but trouble and that he should get out while he still can. As soon as the first man is out of sight, a second appears: Sakharine! He also wants to buy the ship and tells Tintin to name his price.
"Name his price!" the man who sold the ship to Tintin exclaims. "I miss 'name your price' by one man!"
Tintin again says that he doesn't wish to sell and walks off.
From there on the plot moves forward quickly. Tintin gets curious about the model ship - The Unicorn - and goes to the library to look it up. When he returns to his apartment, he finds it ransacked and the model ship gone. Earlier, before he went to the library, the ever present Snowy knocked The Unicorn from it's place on the chest and the mask broke. A small cylinder fell out of the mast and rolled under the chest. Tintin finds this, with the help of Snowy, after returning from the library. He opens the cylinder and a piece of paper is found inside that reads as follows:
"Three Brothers joyned. Three Unicorns in company sailing in the noonday Sunne will speak. For 'tis from the Light that Light will dawn. And then shines forth Eagle's cross."
After a few more events, such as breaking into Marlinkspike Hall and meeting Sakharine again, getting his wallet stolen, nearly getting run over by a car, and a man being shot on his doorstep, Tintin is kidnapped and brought aboard the ship "Karaboudjan" where he promptly escapes - with the help of Snowy - and ends up in Captain Haddock's cabin. The Captain thinks that Tintin is there to murder him so they have a sword fight. After assuring the Captain that he's not there to kill him, Tintin leaves, only to be found by one of the ship's crew. They have a fist fight and then Captain Haddock intervenes. Tintin and Haddock exchange names and then head off to find an escape which they eventually do.
After having their jolly boat blown up (by Haddock pouring whiskey over a fire to try put it out) and then the plane they commandeer crash, Tintin and Haddock are stranded in the dessert where the latter tells the story of his ancestor Sir Francis Haddock who was captain of The Unicorn. Then Haddock collapses because of lack of water and is soon followed by Tintin and even Snowy. The next thing they know is that they are waking up in an encampment of soldiers. Haddock tells the rest of his ancestor's tale and Tintin figures out that there are three model Unicorn ships and each has a scroll. Sakharine has one, Tintin has one, and the third is in Bagghar. That is the next destination of Tintin, Haddock, and Snowy and they soon set off.
Thus follows one of my favorite scenes in the movie. The third scroll is obtained by a trained hawk of Sakharine's. Snowy chases after the hawk and Tintin after Snowy. Haddock and Sakharine also join in on the chase and the three scrolls pass between all the before mentioned a number of times before they end up in Sakharine's hands. The chase sequence is very elaborate and very fun to watch! Not boring in the least... Something fun and exciting is happening every moment!
It all ends, though, when Sakharine threatens to push Haddock and Snowy into the ocean, tied up. They are thrust into the water and due to loyalty to his friends, Tintin lets go of the scrolls and dives after the Captain and Snowy and saves them from drowning. Meanwhile, Sakharine and his men and his hawk go aboard the Karaboudjan and set sail.
Next follows a very inspiring part in the story. Tintin is downhearted and has given up but Haddock, who, thus far in the story, has been the downer with no hope, puts him in his place by saying that if you believe in something you should fight for it and stop at nothing. Then Tintin gets an idea and the story if off again! Eventually all is resolved but I shall leave my long synopsis at this so as not to spoil the end.
Now on to my review...
As the title of this blog says, the movie was AMAZING! I absolutely adored it! Of course, I may be a tad bit biased because I went into the theater with the resolve to come out loving the movie no matter what.
I loved watching the friendship grow between Captain Haddock and Tintin. The comic twists that the Thom(p)sons added were hilarious and it was super fun to see what Snowy was up to in each scene. I actually think that Snowy was the most well done character. He was so... dog-like! He reminded me a lot of my own Rosey (who just got a bath!). The plot was very well done and pretty easy to follow. The animation was amazing. I was stunned to see dust specs floating through the old, unkempt halls of Marlinspike. They looked so real! This kind of minute detail was consistent throughout the entire of movie. The best thing in the entire movie, at least for me, was seeing all alludes to Herge and his work and his characters and his story. I don't think Steven Spielburg and Peter Jackson could've done a better job on keeping the movie in the world that Herge used for Tintin.
Since this is a review and not me gushing over all of the amazing parts in this movie I'll mention a few things that might bother some people.... Captain Haddock is intoxicated most of the movie and is only completely sober when he is out in the desert. I know this could bother some people, although it doesn't really bother me since that's part of Haddock's character. There is also bloodshed and quite a few pirates get stabbed or shot in an action sequence during Captain Haddock's story.
Other than these parts I don't think that there is anything questionable in the movie. In fact, it is one of the cleanest movies I have ever seen! It may be rated PG but is by NO means a little kid's movie.
This movie is most definitely one of my favorites and I am going to see it in the theaters again as soon as I can! Although I won't see it in 3D again. For my first 3D movie it was alright but I could've done without the 3D. Since practically all movies are being done in 3D now, I don't see it as being so special anymore.
While I wait to see the movie again, the Tintin presents keep pouring in. Yesterday I found the Tintin and Captain Haddock Beanie Babies in my advent calender! They look kind of strange (kind of like Muppets in my opinion....) but that's ok. Most human stuffed animals are strange looking.
However, I love them! Tintin's hair is sooooo soft and his quiff is fun to play with! I should do a post on Tintin's quiff...
Captain Haddock is equally fun to play with and his jacket even comes off!
Here is the trio:


I watched the new Sherlock Holmes movie, made in 2009, tonight. Perhaps I will do a review on that tomorrow. I feel like I need to watch it again before I can do a review on it since I was filled with thoughts about Tintin (due to Miss Jack Lewis Baillot's blog post about the Tintin movie. Hee hee... I just love spelling her name! It's fun. Jack Lewis refers to C.S. Lewis, right (if you are reading this...)? The link to her blog is at the end of the post "Two days until Tintin"). Anyway, I was so filled with thoughts about Tintin and what I would put in this blog post that I missed the first ten minutes or so of the Sherlock Holmes movie due to my own musings. I have nothing to do tomorrow so perhaps I shall watch the movie again in the morning and put up a review tomorrow afternoon or night.
Well I supposed I should be heading off to bed now... Maybe I can read some Sherlock Holmes before I go to sleep. I last left Holmes as he was about to receive a visitor with a very long name (although not as long as Prince William's...) whom Holmes describes as, "The worst man in London." I wonder what will happen in "The Adventure of Charles Augustus Milverton."

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Painting!

A friend surprised me and my family with this BEAUTIFUL Tintin movie painting from The World Market!


We hung it above our fireplace. =D

A nice side view because the picture was looking so photogenic.

And here is a close up of Tintin, Snowy, The Unicorn, and an airplane.


I can not thank our friend enough for this picture!! I absolutely love it! So once again, thank you!

Tomorrow I am going to see two movies in the theater... The first is Alvin and the Chipmunks 3: Chipwrecked. I am going to see this with some friends and some friends of my friends. Then my dad is going to meet me at the theater and we'll see Tintin!! =D I will have a movie review up tomorrow night or sometime on Thursday.
Until then, adios!

Monday, December 19, 2011

Two days until Tintin

As the title says, there is only two more days until Tintin premiers in the United States!
This post will feature pictures of the characters, biographies of the characters, biographies of the actors, and the synopsis of the plot from the movie.
The hero of the Tintin adventures is, of course, Tintin. His occupation is reporter, although we never see him writing any articles. Perhaps we can compare him to Jon from the Garfield the cat comics. Jon, Garfield's owner, is a cartoonist but the only time this is referenced is in the first comic. In the same way, we know Tintin is a reporter, but we never see him at work in his profession.
In the Tintin books we never find out how old Tintin is. He is old enough to live on his own in his apartment on Labrador Road, and he is old enough to write for a newspaper, and he is old enough to travel around the world by himself (save his constant companion Snowy) but his age is never fixed. Interestingly, we hardly know anything about Tintin, except for his character.
He is often described as having boy scout type morals. That description is an accurate one, coming through often in the books. Tintin is compassionate and hardly ever gets angry. He tries to get to the bottom of mysteries for the benefit of society. He can be a bit proud, however, and sometimes lies to get people to do what he wants. He is a very good friend and goes places like the Tibetan mountains, rainforests, and deserts, to save his friends. He also doesn't like to drink or smoke and often politely refuses both when they are offered to him.
As well as not knowing his age, we don't know a thing about Tintin's past. The only friends, and enemies, he has are ones he meets in the books. Such as Captain Haddock, Professor Calculus, Chang, and Rastapopoulos. We don't even know if Tintin is his real name. In one of the books he says, "My name? It would mean nothing to you, but back home they call me Tintin."
As well as having good morals, Tintin is an amazing swimmer and, despite his somewhat short stature, is very strong, always knocking out dangerous men much bigger than he. He is also a good shot with a gun and is very smart. He can fly a plane, drive a tank, drive a tank on the moon, drive a car, a motorcycle, and even a boat!
In Tintin an Alph-Art, the final, unfinished, Tintin adventure, Tintin once again meets with his enemy Rastapopoulos. Raspapopouslos is Tintin's Moriarty. The author of Tintin died before he could finish Alph-Art and leaves Tintin is a precarious situation. He is facing his certain death... Rastopopoulos is going to have him covered in wax to become a living statue! The guards are taking Tintin away to meet this fate, when Herge, the author, died, leaving Tintin's fate undecided.
Tintin is being played by the actor Jamie Bell. Jamie Bell started out as a dancer and was made famous in the movie "Billy Elliot" (2000). As opposed to other actors, he is fairly young, both in age and in movies. He has been acting for the past 11 years of his 25 years. In the movies that I have seen with him as a character show that he is a very good actor.
I believe that Jamie Bell is the perfect choice of an actor for Tintin. Jamie himself read the comics when he was younger and was a fan of Tintin before being approached for the part.
Here is a great interview with Jamie. It really shows that he put a lot of work into the Tintin movie and really cares about the character.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=26US87wZQmE&feature=related
Other movies that Jamie Bell has been in - that I've seen - are King Kong (2005) and Jane Eyre (2011).
Now, for the pictures. The first is Tintin from the comic, the second is Tintin from the movie, and the third is Jamie Bell.





The next character is Captain Haddock, who happens to be my favorite.
Captain Haddock is perhaps the complete opposite of Tintin. He is a retired sea captain, NOT a boy scout, and his history and former friends come into the books.
Haddock is a bristly old sea dog, probably over 40 years old. He likes to smoke his pipe and has a drinking problem (which adds humor to the books). He loves to drink whiskey and has a very large vocabulary of "swear" words, if they can be called that. His two favorites are, "Ten thousand thundering typhoons!" and "Blue blistering barnacles." Sometimes the two are put together to make, "Blue blistering barnacles and a thundering typhoon!" Herge, the author, looked through a nautical dictionary to find most of Haddock's exclamations.
Although he has an explosive temper, Captain Haddock loves to live quietly, often preferring his home at Marlinspike Hall to the wild adventures that Tintin drags him on. Loyalty to his friend, however, gets him out of his chair and into dangerous situations.
Many things from the Captain's past have come up in the Tintin adventures. In the final completed Tintin adventure, "Tintin and the Picaros", the Captain's first name is revealed to be Archibald. In "The Shooting Star" Haddock meets an old friend Captain Chester. And in "The Secret of the Unicorn", we find out a lot about Captain Haddock's ancestor, Sir Francis Haddock. At the end of "Red Rackhum's Treasure", Haddock buys Marlinspike Hall, an estate that has been in his family for years.
Despite his brash tendencies, Captain Haddock is the ideal best friend for Tintin. He accompanies Tintin on his adventures, watches out for him, and adds lots of comic relief for the readers!
In the movie Captain Haddock is being played by the talented Andy Serkis who happens to be my favorite actor! Funny how my favorite actor is playing my favorite Tintin character...
Andy Serkis is a VERY amazing actor, although we don't get to see his face all that often since a lot of his characters are done with motion capture or animation!
Andy Serkis played Gollum in the Lord of the Rings movies (2001, 2002, 2003), King Kong in King Kong (2005), Spike in Flushed Away (2006), and Capricorn in Inkheart (2008). He is also playing Gollum in The Hobbit which comes to theaters next December.
Here are the pictures. First is Captain Haddock from the books, then from the movie, and then Andy Serkis.






Next we have Thompson and Thomson.
They are most definitely the most prominent comic relief characters in the books, even more so than Captain Haddock. They are bumbling detectives who are always going off on the wrong trail and mixing up what they say. Their motto is, "Mum's the word, that's our motto." While one Thom(p)son is saying that, the other is always echoing it with, "Dumb's the word, that's our motto."
We don't know anything about these characters either. Probably because they aren't major characters.
You may ask, how do you tell them apart? There are subtle differences between the two. For example, Thomson's mustache is flipped up at the ends, while Thompson's is straight.
In the book "Tintin and Co." by Michael Farr (a Tintinologist), he states that the Thom(p)son's aren't twins, nor are they even related! I'll leave it up to you, the reader, to decide for yourself...
These two detectives are being played by Nick Frost (Thomson) and Simon Pegg (Thompson) who are best friends in real life. I have never seen anything with Nick Frost in it so I can't talk about him... However I have seen two movies with Simon Pegg. He played Scotty in the new "Star Trek" movie (2009) and voiced Reepicheep in "Voyage of the Dawn Treader" (2010). He is a good actor and played the part in Star Trek very well!
Here is a picture of Thompson (left) and Thomson (right). Below them is a picture of Thompson (left) and Thomson (right). Below that is a picture of Simon Pegg (left) and Nick Frost (right).






Here is a very important character... Snowy! Tintin's loyal companion through all of the books. Snowy is as brave as his master, except when it comes to spiders. Snowy hates the restrictions of a collar and leash and often goes without them, except when he has to ride in an airplane.
Snowy likes whiskey almost as much as Captain Haddock and is always drinking spilled alcohol. He also has the tendency to steal food and drop anything and everything for a bone.
Here is Snowy and below him is the Snowy from the movie.



The last character I will talk about is Ivanovich Sakharine. In the Tintin books, Sakharine is a peaceful model ship collector but in the movie, he is the bad guy. I don't know much about him yet since I haven't seen the movie.... But I'll report back when I know more!
He is being played by Daniel Craig. I don't think I've seen any Daniel Craig movies but I do know that he is James Bond and I've heard that is a wonderful actor.
The first picture is Sakharine from the book, then from the movie, and the final picture is Daniel Craig.




There is a wide range of cast members in the Tintin movie like Toby Jones, Cary Elwes, Mackenzie Crook, Daniel Mays, and Gad Elmaleh.
The director of the Tintin movie is the well-known Steven Spielberg who has done movies such as Jurassic Park, Indiana Jones, Jaws, Transformers, and E.T.
Joining him as producer is Peter Jackson who is very well-known for Lord of the Rings.
The music of the Tintin film will be done by John Williams who has composed MANY movie scores (like Star Wards and Indiana Jones).
Peter is on the left while Steven is on the right.


No story would be complete without an author... Georges Remi wrote the Tintin books under the name of Herge. He was born in Brussels, Belgium in 1907. He created his character Tintin in 1929 and he continued writing Tintin adventures until his death in 1983. Tintin took up most of his life.
He was so dedicated to his books that he would travel the places Tintin traveled, just so he could get a particular land mark for his books. He would cut pictures and articles out of "National Geographic" magazines and keep them for reference when he was drawing. You may think Tintin is just another comic... But in reality, a lot of time and effort and LOTS of research were put into the Tintin adventures, up to a point where Herge was so stressed about writing Tintin that he had to take a break for a number of years.
As an aspiring author, I greatly look up to Herge. His research and detail alone make me stare in awe at the page before me. Every time a re-read Tintin, I pick up something new that I hadn't noticed before. Herge's witty dialogue and hilarious characters influence me to add humor to my writing. The settings of his stories, whether they be in the desert, under the ocean, or on the moon, inspire me to take my characters out of every day life and throw them into precarious situations in foreign lands and strange new worlds.
In Belgium, Tintin and Herge both are looked up to as heroes.
“Tintin is myself. He reflects the best and brightest in me; he is my successful double. I am not a hero. But like all 15-year-old boys, I dreamt of being one…and I have never stopped dreaming. Tintin has accomplished many things on my behalf.” -HergĂ©


The Adventures of Tintin: The Secret of the Unicorn movie is based off of three of Herge's Tintin adventures.
"The Crab with the Golden Claws."
"The Secret of the Unicorn."
and "Red Rackhum's Treasure."
The movie will follow Tintin, and of course Snowy, as they meet Captain Haddock for the first time and then join him on a treasure hunt involving his ancestor's ship "The Unicorn."
But someone else is after the treasure.
"Of course someone else is after the treasure. It's the axiom of treasure hunting." Riley Poole from National Treasure 2: Book of Secrets, so aptly puts it.
So who will find The Unicorn and the treasure first? Tintin and Captain Haddock or Sakharine?
I guess we'll have to wait until Wednesday to find out....

The idea for this blog post comes from Miss Jack Lewis Baillot and her blog:
http://missjacklewisbaillot.blogspot.com/

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Piano Recital. (6 Days!)

I had my Christmas piano recital tonight! Here is a video of me playing "I'll be Home for Christmas" by Kim Gannon and Walter Kent, arranged by Philip Keveren.

video

And now, because it's only SIX days until Tintin comes out, here are pictures of all the movie posters!
This first one is my favorite.



This one is my second favorite:


Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Cruel and unusual punishment. (One week!)

Poor Rosey.... She hates the little Christmas shirt and hat we got for her.
She usually goes and hides in her kennel after we put them on.


Or she seeks refuge under the coffee table.

Tonight while I was trying to wrestle the shirt on Rosey, this happened:

We got lots of laughs.

Then Rosey shook and the hat fell, lopsided, across her face. Arrrrr, matey. A pirate dog be she!


Elephant Rosey:


And now... Because the Tintin movie is coming out in only ONE week, here are some of my favorite pictures from the movie trailers and various websites.

This picture is a funny part in the trailer. Captain Haddock thinks Tintin is cold while he naps so he lights the oars on fire.
"What have you done?!" exclaims Tintin when he wakes up.
"I lit a wee fire." Captain Haddock replies.
"In a boat?!"
The camera zooms out and we see a large explosion and then it shows the picture below.
"Well this is a fine mess." Tintin says.


I LOVE this picture of Thompson and Thomson, the bumbling detectives.


Here is the scene where Tintin finds out who Captain Haddock is. I love Tintin's expression.
"I'm Tintin by the way."
"Haddock, Archibald Haddock."

I LOVE the angle of this picture. Poor Snowy had a picture dropped on his head...


Captain Haddock's face looks so funny here. Snowy's like, "Huh?"


Hee hee, another funny Captain Haddock picture.


Here is Mr. Silk, a wallet thief, with Thompson and Thomson in the background.


Here is a picture of the comic version of Tintin. The picture below it is a recreated version, made for the new movie.

This last picture is perhaps my most favorite. I don't know why.

As you may have been able to tell from the pictures, this is not a live action movie. However I don't think it is considered animation either. This movie was made using "Live Motion Capture."
The actors have to wear a special suit while acting that has all sorts of sensors on it that pick up every movement of the actor. The movements, down to the tiniest eye twitch, are recorded and turned into "animation" on a special monitor.
Here is a picture. The men in the yellow circle are acting with the special suits. The screen in the red circle is what they are acting, put into the animation!

I think it is an amazing way to do a movie.
Just one week.... 7 days.... until the Tintin movie comes out. I don't think I can wait that long.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

8 Days.....

Yes, I am counting down the days to something. What, you may ask? The release of the Tintin movie in the United States! Who is Tintin, you may ask?
Tintin is a young reporter who travels around the world solving crimes. His constant companion is Snowy, his dog. He also has a friend named Captain Haddock.
The Tintin movie is based off of three of Herge's comic/graphic novel type books that feature Tintin (all together there are 23 or 24 Tintin books, found at your local library or bookstore!). The first is "The Crab with the Golden Claws" which is where Tintin and Captain Haddock meet. The other two are a double book, "The Secret of the Unicorn" and "Red Rackhum's Treasure".
You can find action packed trailers on Youtube.

Without further ado... Meet Snowy: The Beanie Baby. I found him in my Advent Calender yesterday =) Thanks Mom!


Mom and I went to the thrift store yesterday and suddenly, while Mom was looking through the Christmas stuff, she says, "Abbey!" in a strained voice. My first thought was, "Oh no! What's wrong? Is she hurt?" But it turns out that she had found this Tintin ornament:


"Why would someone buy it and then give it to the thrift store?" Was Mom's question when she saw the date of the ornament was 2011. We saw that the ornament was made by the World Market and since there was one near the thrift store we stopped by. It turns out that they had given out these ornaments for the first 100 customers in to the store for Black Friday! What luck!

Today I was on TV. Not live TV; is was recorded and will be broadcasted later, but it was still TV! My government class went on TV to debate the congressional bills we have been working on. Next May we will be going to our state capitol to debate these bills in mock Congress. This TV appearance was a very good warm up! I am looking much more forwards to Mock Congress now that I know what it will be like.

12 days until Christmas and the birth of Our Savior...!

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Gingerbread House and Adventures with Peanut Butter

Tonight my dad and I built a gingerbread house and some gingerbread men from a kit!
The front:


The back:


And here are the gingerbread men... We don't know quite what happened to the one on the right...


Rosey meets peanut butter.... An epic struggle... Who will win? Now playing on Abbey's blog.

video

Guess what? I finished my American Girl Doll Twelfth Night!! I finished adding music and now it is completely finished... It's 124 minutes long! :0 That's longer than the new Tintin movie that will be coming out in 13 days!

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Pride and Prejudice

I recently finished reading Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austin. I loved it!
It is the story of Elizabeth Bennett who lives with her fickle mother, gentlemanly father, and four sisters. Lizzie's mother has one thought on her mind.... To marry off her five daughters. When handsome (not to mention wealthy!) Mr. Bingley comes to town to live in his new house, Mrs. Bennett sets him up with her eldest daughter Jane. Along with Mr. Bingley comes his meddling sisters and his friend Mr. Darcy who has 10,000 pounds a year!
When Mr. Darcy refuses to dance at a ball and acts petty and rude all evening, everyone believes him to be a very proud and dis-likable man. Elizabeth particularly doesn't like him and forms all sorts of prejudices against him.
Both of them must forget their pride and their prejudice before the book's happy ending.
I loved Pride and Prejudice because it wasn't your average love story. In the early 1800's when Jane Austin wrote Pride and Prejudice, girls were very conservative and their only thoughts were of marrying into a good, and hopefully rich, family. This theme carries on through the book.
Something I especially liked was the humor! I wasn't expecting it to be such a funny book. My two favorite parts are humorous.
My first favorite part was near the beginning when Lizzie is visiting Mr. Bingley's home to visit her sick sister who they took in. Miss Bingley (Mr. Bingley's sister) is trying to impress Mr. Darcy. She asks Lizzie to "take a turn around the room" with her. Lizzie gets up and they start walking around the room. Then Miss Bingley asked Mr. Darcy to join them. Mr. Darcy replies with something like,
"You can have only one of two motives for walking around the room. One, you are in each others confidence and are going to discuss secret matters. Or two, you are aware of your figures and think that you can show them off better by walking around the room. If the first, I would only be in the way. If the second, I can better admire you from where I am."
My second favorite part is after Mr. Collins proposes to Lizzie. Mr. Bennett says to his daughter something like,
"Lizzie, from now on you must be a stranger to one of your parents. You mother will never speak to you again if you do not marry Mr. Collins, and I will never speak to you again if you do!"
Another thing I loved about the book was the vocabulary. People had much bigger vocabularies two hundred years ago... In a video I once watched the person said that in Shakespeare's time the people had a working vocabulary of 54,000 words. Today we have a working vocabulary of 3,000 words. Isn't that amazing? That's partly the reason I love books written more than 60 years ago and partly why I love Shakespeare! As an aspiring author, I need a big vocabulary. Don't be afraid if I randomly start talking with bigger words!

Speaking of being an aspiring author... I am nearly finished with my novel! Only a few more scenes left to write. Then it's editing... I dislike editing very strongly. Oh well... A good story will come out of it!

The next book on my reading list is Jane Eyre.

Currently, though, I am still reading Sherlock Holmes. I finished two volumes of the short stories and am now reading "A Study in Scarlet." I really love Sherlock Holmes. The novels, as well as the short stories, are another example of a bigger vocabulary.
Here's a hint to reading Sherlock Holmes.... NEVER read "The Final Problem" (one of the short stories where Holmes "dies" ) late at night because you will want to read the next short story ( "The Adventure of the Empty House" ) right after you finish "The Final Problem" so you can find out what happens!

A few days ago we woke up to frost on the grass and mist in the air! It was so beautiful that I had to take Juliet outside for a few pictures. Here are some of my favorites:



With Christmas fast approaching I was given the important job of putting our Nativity Scene up. It took a few tries to get it right....
Baby Jesus attracts quite a crowd!


"A child a child crying in the night..." Where'd everyone go? No wonder he's crying!


Nope... Still not right....
Ahhh... There we go!


And finally, a collage that I made of the band Electric Mayhem and their saxophonist Zoot (yes... they are Muppets!) =D