Thursday, July 28, 2011

The King's Speech: Movie Review

I have never done a lot of movie reviews on here before for various reasons.  However, I thought I'd give it another go after watching The King's Speech.

Imagine standing in front of millions of people, all of which are looking up at you as a respected leader.  You step up to the microphone, which is also being broadcasted through the radio, and try to speak, yet hardly a word comes out......

When Albert, Duke of York, is suddenly thrust to the throne as King George VI, he has more to worry about than an impending world war; a slight speech impediment he has had since he was a child.

"Most of us know the feeling of having no choice but to perform a duty you feel you’re ill-equipped for; luckily for most of us, our tasks aren’t quite so high profile as those of a member of a royal family, and our failures don’t matter to a nation. In The King’s Speech, for Prince Albert, Duke of York, the pressure to overcome a prominent stammer is bad enough when performing princely duties. But, as our title suggests, his duties are about to intensify."  Excerpt from another review I found.

Doctor after doctor has examined him and tried to help him, but all to no avail.

Enter Lionel Logue.

An unlikely bond forms between the two as they work together to fix 'Bertie's' stammer.  The parts with these two were kind of humorous, in their own way.

I can't decide if I want to call them funny, emotional, or sweet. Maybe all three?  Logue does an amazing job to help Albert overcome his stammer.  His methods are very logical and straightforward.

I think this movie did such an amazing job on showing hard work, perseverance, and team work.

Elizabeth, Albert's wife, is quite a character.  She was an amazing help meet to Albert in so many ways. 

She was right there for him the whole time, backing him up, fighting his fights, sharing his sorrows, and just being there as a friend.  She was not pushy during the speech lessons, but instead just encouraged him to keep going.

The King's Speech had me in tears at several points.  His last speech in the movie was amazing (and definitely brought the tears rolling!), as well as the response from everyone afterwards.  Wow.
Colin Firth was an amazing actor.  I already liked him from A&E's Pride and Prejudice (played Mr. Darcy), but this definitely set him in tops for me.  To be able to do this kind of acting is just amazing.

Helena Bonham Carter played Elizabeth. I have never seen her on screen before, though any of you who have seen any of the Harry Potter movies will be familiar with her.

Lionel Logue was done by the amazing Geoffry Rush (who voiced Virgil the seagull in Finding Nemo).

It was especially fun to see Jennifer Ehle come into play as Logue's wife, Myrtle. 

In case any of you don't know, Ehle played opposite of Firth in Pride and Prejudice.   So, naturally, it was quite funny when, at one part, Myrtle is introduced to the King, she turns, in astonishment. (and we all ad-libbed for her) "Mr. Darcy? When did you become king??" haha!

This movie was rated R for language, but thankfully most of it was just during one scene, which you could mute. :-)

I think this movie is one I would watch again, and I rate it 4 out of 5 stars.  If you have seen it, please drop your thoughts in the comment box! I'd love to hear what you think.  And if you haven't seen it, but want to, go watch it, then let me know what you think. lol!

Go HERE for another great review!


It looks like we might be getting some rain pretty soon!!! Pray hard!

In Christ's Service,

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

The Thing to do this Summer so You can do Something this Winter: A Tutorial

Ok, if that title wasn't confusing enough, let me confuse you a bit more.  I am doing a little tutorial today.  However, you won't be able to do it until this winter, yet you have to start now.  Now are you really confused??

Ha-ha! I do love confusing people... Just kidding.

My tutorial today has to do with flowers.  Flowers, paper, printers, and picture frames. Even more confusing?
I don't really know what this is called.....

So, let me gather my thoughts here so that y'all can follow without your brains spinning and your eyes lolling.

Pressed flowers. 

That is what you need.  If you do not know how to press your own flowers, let this simple tutorial help you out.

What you need:

A stack of heavy books (dictionaries, encyclopedias, phone books, etc)
Paper towels
A box of tissues
The flowers you are going to press.  (*note, if your flowers have a very large catalyst-the part that holds all the petals together at the base-, try to trim the stem as close to it as possible.  These will also take a while longer to thoroughly dry.)
A lovely cup of tea, cocoa, or coffee. (A true necessity, in my opinion!) 

Once you have gathered all of these things, here's how to put them to good use. ;-)
Take one of your books and open it towards the back.  Put down a layer of paper towels, being sure to cover the whole area of the page.

Then do the same with the tissue (the tissue is smooth and therefore will not leave imprints in the flower's petals.)

Next, begin laying out your flowers, being sure to leave a bit of room for them to lay out flat (don't crowd them).
(These are some petals from my Vinca plants.  Aren't they lovely? I love the white ones with the dark pink center best.  Also some other low ground cover plant with delicate purple flowers... Broacha or something..)
It's also great to get some leaves to press as well.

After you have laid all the flowers down on your tissue, gently press each one with your fingers so help them begin lying flat.

Now, take some more tissues and lay them over the flowers. Do the same with another layer of paper towels.  Put your hand on top and press downward to get them started.

Now, take a good portion of pages from the front and flip them 'backwards' (as if you were reading the book from the back to the front) on top of the flowers.  If you have more flowers to press, continue the process.
(if you love history stuff or just learning things in general, you might want to go with a phone book so that you don't start reading the pages and forget about the flowers!)
Once all your flowers are pressed (or your run out of book), close your book gently, making sure not to upset any of the layers of flowers.

Place the rest of your heavy books on top of the book with the flowers.

This will add the weight you need to get the flowers flat.  Now you just need to leave it for a couple of weeks.  (on larger flowers, or ones with large catalysts, leave for a month or two.)

So, now what do I do with my flowers?

As soon as your flowers have dried, you may now do an assortment of things using this simple technique.  Now, I say you can do this this winter because you might as well let your flowers dry that long, and it gives you something to do if you happen to get snowed in or something. :-)

One of the prettiest things I have seen done with pressed flowers is arranging them on a piece of paper.  Typically the piece of paper has a little saying or perhaps a hymn or Bible verse printed on it.

For my Diddly (as I just named this little project, though I know it probably has a proper name... "Ellie??? Help?!"), I chose one of my favorite hymns, "What a friend we have in Jesus".

I have printed it slightly off center to give it a more interesting look.

All you need to do now is arrange your flowers along the border of your paper.
 (A lovely rose petal and a spray of baby's breath against some leaves)
(I chose a large red daisy for my top left corner, and then some smaller things along the other edges.  See how just leaves can make it look lovely? It adds character as well as gives a softer color for your eye to rest on)

Once you have arranged them, there are a couple of options to make them stay there.  I used a hot glue gun for mine, but I have also seen them kept in place with some laminate.  Doing the laminate is slightly harder, so you'll want two people for that, but it is also the way to do it if you are making cards or something else.

Ok, so after my flowers were glued in place, simply place it in the frame, put the back on, and voila!  All done.  Now display your piece of work. :-)
(I will more than likely find another frame for this... probably one made of 'rustic' wood or something to compliment the flowers.  Personally I think it looks too 'stiff' in this one, but I only borrowed the frame for pictures. :-) )

Other things you can do with this are:

Book marks
Scrap books

When doing these, though, you will need to laminate them.  For the scrap book pages, I don't think you would need to, especially if you are putting the pages into a sleeve. If they are exposed pages, though, you would probably want to laminate them.

There ya go!  I hope you enjoy going out and finding some lovely flowers to press (though it might be a bit late for the seasonal ones, you can always find a few hidden here and there!)  And weed flowers are great, too, because they will lose their smell after a long time of drying.  Also get some leaves! Green leaves, pretty leaves, even leaves that might not be perfect will add character to your Diddly.  Then, get some lovely red, yellow, and gold ones this fall.  Leaves don't take as long to dry and will definitely be done by the time you are ready to sit down and do this.

In Christ's Service,

Sunday, July 24, 2011

What is this??

Can someone please tell me what this strange substance is that comes from the sky? 

It drops out of the sky, falling sometimes hard, sometimes fast.  It makes the dirt look funny and squishy. 

And then, it leaves pools of this stuff! 

You can see your reflection in them, too, which is really weird.  Perhaps a one way mirror... spooky!

So, does any one know what this stuff is?  I am getting seriously concerned about it.... maybe I should call our mayor.....EMERGENCY!

Then, on this strange measuring thing we found, it said we had half an inch of it........

Any one else scared??

***note, all pictures taken from Google images...

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Don't do this, this late at night....

Don't try working on editing a movie at 11:30 at night... just sayin'. =D

What movie?  Well, I am trying to put together our drama performance onto a DVD.  However, I am having to edit it just a bit, and... well...... let's just say it isn't wise to do this late at night! lol!

Right now I am waiting for some stuff to load, so I thought I would pop in and say a random little hello.  More than likely, no one is up or reading this blog.. but, just thought I'd give it a try.  Actually, more than likely, all of you are sensibly in your beds... right?

So, how has your summer gone so far?  Has everything gone as planned (even though I know that never happens...)?  Have you been able to get things done that you wanted to?  Personally, I can't believe July is almost over.. it went by way too fast........

Any how, sorry for this random little post!  Hope y'all are having a GREAT evening!

In Him,

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Jesus Take the Wheel

As we were driving in the car yesterday, this song came on the radio.  I had never heard it before, and as I listened to the lyrics, it really touched my heart.  The chorus of this song is this:

Jesus take the wheel, take it from my hands
'cause I can't do this on my own.
I'm letting go, so give me one more chance
Save me from this road I'm on,
Oh, Jesus take the wheel.

Our family has been going through a lot lately, and letting go and giving it all to God, who has the perfect plan, has not been easy.  However, I know that we will make it through, if we just let Jesus 'take the wheel'.

As soon as we have taken matters into our own hands, we are going no where. As soon as we give Jesus the wheel, He guides us, drives us, and takes care of us.  Holding your hand in a balled fist won't help, either.  You have to give God whatever is going on.  If we don't, we can become shattered, ruined, and desperate.

Although this is easy to say, it is very hard to do.  I know so many times I will pray, "Ok, God, please take this burden from me. I can't bear it any longer and I need You to help me...."  and then, a few days later, I am holding onto that burden again.  It really is hard, but it can be accomplished.

Remember Who holds the world in His hands.......

Enjoy the song, sung by Carrie Underwood (which, by the way, I was not familiar with until I heard this song!)

And this was a cute little video of a little girl singing to this song. Just the first few seconds are really cute. :)

In Christ's Service,

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Happy 11th birthday!!

Wow.... eleven years gone by already! I just can't believe it!  Where did time fly?

So, today we are celebrating my youngest brother's birthday.  Caleb had a very interesting start in this world.  His birth story is a miracle in itself, but the fact that he reached this age is also a miracle..... Ok, ok, it isn't that bad.

The day started out just like any birthday around here.  The birthday person gets breakfast in bed.  So, at Caleb's request, we brought him a bowl of Captain Crunch (couldn't believe he would pick that over traditional monkey bread, but then... he is a unique person!).  Lately, Caleb has been asking for a Parakeet.  He really wanted a little pet bird.... and, he really thought he was going to get one, especially after Mom and he looked up Parakeet stuff online!  But, after going shopping one day, we told him that we had 'not' gotten him a parakeet.  Although I could tell he was slightly bummed, he smiled anyway and said, "I'll be happy with whatever I get." So sweet!!

This morning we got up and wrapped his presents.  Mom and Dad got him a jump rope.  Becca, Josh, and I got him... bird seed, parakeet treats, a cuttle bone, and some little toys that go in a parakeet's cage.  When we served him breakfast in bed, we only gave him the jump rope.  We sang, got pictures of him unwrapping, etc.  Since it was cereal for breakfast, he didn't get to EAT it in bed... we made him come out to the table.....

When he came out, he found-much to his surprise!- five small gifts, sloppily *ahem* Neatly wrapped on the table.  The surprised look on his face was so cute! As he began unwrapping each one, his expression became more and more puzzled. Finally, he opened one that said parakeet something or other.  His eyes lit up, then teared up as he looked at his and said, "You DID get me a parakeet!"  He was so happy! It was really fun to see him get that happy about something.....

And then the next thing happened.... we were eating our cereal, but Caleb was just sitting there.  Mom kept telling him, "Hurry up and eat so that we can head into town to pick out your bird!".  Well, he couldn't eat.  Why?  He had a loose tooth that was just about to come out and it hurt to chew! Poor guy... so, for about five minutes he sat there watching us enjoying our breakfast. hehe. And then! *POP* out it came!  So, he had a couple of special things happen to him today.  (I will post pictures of the day later on or tomorrow...)

Caleb at 6 years old

Now I get to do the fun part.  It is tradition at our home to, after eating the birthday supper, go around the table and each person gets to say what they like best about the birthday person. (Yes, we even do this if we have company, so beware on what days you come over! haha!)  Although I will get to say these tonight, I want to share a few with you.....


Caleb all ready to serve our valentine dinner!

Those, of course, are only a few words that describe Caleb.  One of my favorite things, though, are his hugs.  He is a GOOD hugger.  I love hugs. If I am ever sad or upset about something, I can be sure to get a goo hug from Caleb, along with some comforting words.

He is an amazing helper.  He works hard, doesn't mind helping, and keeps up a good conversation.

Is he adorable or is he adorable?

He loves to laugh... and boy is that laugh infectious!  Once he starts laughing, just about everyone else starts laughing, too!  And His smiles a beautiful.  They display such joy that comes from deep down.

 Headin' out to film a LOTR spoof with some very good friends!

Then....he is a joker. Caleb LOVE to joke and tease.  Sometimes it can't get a bit interesting, but it is so much fun to have some little joke going on all the time.

Doing the hobbit and the Nazgul scene.. he played Sam.

Caleb is very animated, so his storytelling always is SO interesting and funny.  He expressions are hilarious and his mind is a quick worker, jumping from one subject to the next.

He's flying!!!! Just another one of his great expressions...

He is an amazing piano player.  He has an extremely good ear.  He can listen to a song from a movie or something else and then go and pick it out on the piano.  He has also composed several of his own beautiful songs.

 Jumpin' around before filming..

Caleb is very kind and caring.  He loves animals and is gentle with them.  He takes good care of his chickens and will do a good job of taking care of his Parakeet.

 Back flop landing...

Now, I could go on, but people are tugging at my sleeves anxiously wanting to go to town!  So, I had better close.  However, if you don't mind, please drop Caleb a birthday note in the comments section. He will really appreciate it. :-)

In Christ's Service,

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

I love you and miss you....

It is really hard to believe that it has been two years since my Bampa passed away.  It seems like only a week ago when we got the call that he had died and we all ran up to the house.......

Nana came over for supper tonight, and as we were eating, I remembered that we had been eating dinner when the call came.  Of course, we had been expecting it, but at the same time, it seemed so unreal.  Part of it, I think, is that it came so gradually.  My Bampa was diagnosed with Pancreatic Cancer about a year and half before his death.  As many of you probably know, pancreatic cancer is the most painful cancer...

It became a tough part of our life.  To think that something precious to you was slipping away was really hard.  He was normal for most of it, not really changing.  Except for a few emergency hospital visits, everything remained the same..... except one thing: he was not a Believer.  He had not yet taken those steps to inviting Jesus into his heart as his Savior.  I can't really explain the sadness that would sometimes creep over me.  It was this reality that hit me in the face like thunder, saying that once he died, I would never see him again.  It is like an impending doom.

Months passed by and he altered slightly.  Mostly losig weight and beginning to look older than he really was.  Bampa always looked very young-much younger than his age!

When he became seriously ill, we did hospice care (took care of him at home instead of sending him to a nursing home or hospital).  That was rather tough.. no, really tough.  To see your loved one fading away is never easy.  The weirdest thing was that he had faded so much, it was like he wasn't there.  It was just a shell of him, but HE was gone.  So, when the call came, it didn't really hit me, though I don't think it ever does for anyone until later on.  I still catch myself thinking, "Oh, Bampa would think that was so funny! I'll have to run up and tell him about it."  Or, when we came home from bull sales.  It was always so much fun to run up and let Nana and Bampa know how the bulls averaged, etc.

Having grown up in New York, we always teased him about the way he said things.  "Donkey" was pronounced "dunkey" in his vocabulary.  "Huge" was "yuge", "bottle" was "bottul" (not that he spelled them that way, only pronounced them that way.)  It was always so much fun.

He served in the navy, worked for NASA, and had a vivid love for learning, so listening to his stories was always interesting!  He was so knowledgeable... he could tell you just about anything. 

One of the best things about him, though, is that he made you feel really important... as if you YOU were his best friend.  In fact, there were so many people at the memorial service that would get up and say, "Well, I always though that I was his best friend..." He was just that way, always interested in what you were doing, learning, working on, etc.  It didn't matter if he didn't care for sewing or crocheting.  If he knew I was working on something, he always wanted me to tell him about it.  It was such a good lesson for my own life to be like that.  To be kind, considerate, and interested in others more than I ever was.

Although it has been 2 years, I still get an ache in my heart everyonce in a while. I love and miss Bamba so very much.  I wish everyone could have known him, could have heard his stories, could have heard his funny accent and pronunciation.  Though this may seem rather silly, I really feel like I will see him again.  Not because I think God had mercy and let him into heaven without him receiving Jesus, but because based on some things that happened, I think maybe he did accept Jesus in the end.

In Christ's Service,

Thursday, July 7, 2011

And We're off! {A random little update}

Tomorrow morning-or afternoon- our family will be heading off to a town two hours away for us for a family reunion.  This is bound to be a rather boring post, and I am sorry for it...

Every year we get together for my Dad's side of the family reunion. It is pretty fun and I enjoy seeing all the different family members.  This year, my Grandma dedicated a lot of time to putting together a family tree, even tracing our history back to some castles somewhere!  She got a lot of the info (and put the whole thing together) on  This is quite a neat little site.  Great place for finding names from way back when. ;-) I am extremely excited to see what all she got, as I am pretty interested in History.

July is definitely our busiest month.  We have lots going on, but I think it will be fun.  Is July a busy month at your place?  I know lots of people are off of school for Summer break. We do school during July and typically take off in August.  This year, however, I will keep going so that I can get done with school and graduate! I don't mind too much.. except for the math.. haha!  Sorry for you math lovers out there reading this.. you are probably cringing!

Our family recently started watching "In the dust of the Rabbi".  Ray Vander Laan takes you through different places in Israel where Jesus walked and goes through the history of different Rabbi's and what they did, different students that were studying to be a Rabbi, etc.  It has been really good so far! He really encourages you in your walk and makes you feel on fire for God! It is totally amazing. I definitely recommend it. :-)  I would LOVE to go there someday and walk where Jesus walked.. what an amazing trip that would be!  But, not as exciting as being able to walk WITH Jesus someday!

The Lord has been showing me many areas in my life that need to be worked on.. It is painful, but I know it is good.  However, I sometimes think I shouldn't be allowed to turn 18 until I have reached a certain point.. what 'certain point'? I don't know.  I just feel as if I don't deserve it. Still, it makes me want to work all the harder on those spots to get them cleaned up. :-) \
    A wonderful friend once said, "Ever since I have become a Christian, I have become more sinful... or perhaps I have begun to notice all the things I was sinning in that didn't seem wrong before..." Amen to that!

I gave my newest student her first fiddle lesson on Tuesday evening.  Becca and I picked Petra and Hannah (her sister) up after doing some shopping then headed home.  We had lessons (which I was rather scatterbrained for, I am afraid! I hadn't had time to 'properly' prepare.. lol!), then they stayed the night.  She and I are bartering, which is very nice.  She helps me do thing around the house and I give her lessons. Perfect-o!  So, the next morning, she helped me finish planting my flower garden.  I will hopefully be posting some pictures soon, once all the landscaping is done.  That was Mama's and Daddy's birthday present to me.  They bought me some lovely flowers to plant in my garden.  I had tried growing some from seeds, but I am afraid the birds ate them before they had time to grow! I was very disappointed... So, this present was very nice!

Mama had a pretty bad thing happen to her garden! It was frustrating what with all the work we had put into it.  You can read it here.

Oh, we did get some rain! That was a wonderful blessing.  We will hopefully be getting more soon.  We got 4/10, which was wonderful. Some green grass is already starting to poke up their spikes.

We have a little calf who lost it's Mama.. we will hopefully be getting it back to her, but the poor calf doesn't look too good. Hopefully she won't die.  Unfortunately, we didn't realize that she had gotten separated. Bummer...

Well, I guess I close.  Thanks for listening reading my rambling thoughts!  Now let's just see if I come back whole... I met melt over in Tucumcari! It is supposed to be about 103 degrees over there... WHEW! Not looking forward to that part...... ;-)

I hope everyone had a wonderful 4th of July! What did y'all do? Any thing fun?  We ended up working on broken water tanks, and a few things around the house.. we kind of celebrated the night before with some family. :-)  Sadly, though, because of the dry weather, we weren't allowed fire works. That was kind of a bummer, but I didn't mind too much. ;-)

Have a wonderful evening and coming weekend!!

In Christ's Service,