Sunday, October 31, 2010


I'm feeling a little panicky right now. NaNoWriMo starts tomorrow? Where on earth has this month gone? I am so totally unprepared to write a novel! :) At least last year I had a slight idea of plot and characters. At this moment I have nothing. I would like to write something modern with a ton of classic movie a character who constantly quotes "Casablanca." But I believe it would be a little too autobiographical.

There is so much going on this month that I know it's so impractical to do NaNo. But I'm doing it, anyway. Even if last year repeats itself and I end up writing the last 15,000 in a day or so.

Most of you guys know about NaNoWriMo, don't you? In case you don't, it's a challenge to write a 50,000 word novel during the month of November. They're even offering a special deal again where if you accomplish this goal, you get a free paperback copy of your book! You can read more here. Or you can read my adventures from last November.

I just finished watching "It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown!" Oh, how I love the Peanuts gang. I actually bought some Peanuts fall and Christmas fabric yesterday! It's so cute...I'll have to post pictures sometime. If you didn't get to watch Charlie Brown and Snoopy this weekend, here's a short fix:

In other news, November 1st usually marks the day I break out the Christmas music and movies and put up my 1960s aluminum tree. But I'm trying to hold back a little this year. I might have to start the music tomorrow, but I'm trying to wait a few weeks before I put up my tree! I'm just a Christmas nerd.

Until next time,

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Winners of the "Sew Technicolor" giveaway!!

Guess what, guys? I made my first ever Etsy sale this morning!! Or last night, rather. I went to bed late, after watching "Anne of Green Gables: The Continuing Story" (more on that in a later post). And when I woke up and checked Etsy, there it was! It was the black wallet that I posted about the other day, and it went to someone in New Jersey. And it so completely made my day!

Thanks to everyone who entered the giveaway! I really appreciate it. :) I decided to shut it down a little earlier than 10:00 tonight, because of some other things I have to do. And entries for it had pretty much slowed to a stop.

And now for the winners...

The first winner, the winner of the wallet, was number 29 (thanks to, which was:

Bess! Bess is such a sweet person who keeps up a lovely and encouraging blog at Bess' Bag. Bess, please send me an email (my email is in the sidebar) with your mailing address so I can get your wallet to you. And don't forget to let me know which wallet from my shop you want! Congrats!

And the second winner, winner of the hoop art, was number 42, which was...
Ruth! Ruth seems to be a kindred spirit of mine- a fellow bookworm, Austen fan, and classic movie lover! She blogs at Booktalk & More. Ruth, please send me an email with your mailing address so I can send you your felt hoop art! Congrats!

I seriously appreciate all of you guys who entered my first giveaway. I wish I could give every single one of you something! It was so much fun, and I'm already looking forward to hosting another...maybe a book giveaway next time? I've already got something in mind. :)

Until next time,

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Three things.

Three things of importance:

1. The other day, I finished watching the last season of "The Dick van Dyke Show." It's always sort of bittersweet to finish a series! I loved the second to last episode: "The Gunslinger." It gave me a strange desire to watch a Western movie. And I don't even like Westerns! Judy Garland musicals like "The Harvey Girls" and "Girl Crazy" are about as Western as I get.

2. I made my first treasury on Etsy! You can check it out here (edit: sorry about leaving out the link earlier, guys!). It's classic movie themed and has a bunch of great gift ideas if you have someone in your life with the disease CMAD (classic movie addiction disorder).

3. I've listed two new wallets in my Etsy shop! Here they are:

Black and Turquoise Floral Wallet

Brown and Pink Floral Wallet

Thanks to everyone who's entered the giveaway so far! If you haven't entered, there's still time. It ends this Saturday night. Click here to enter!

Until next time,

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Anne with an "e."

Oh, Anne. I think we might be kindred spirits. You're a lot braver and bolder than I am. My hair is not red. I'm not an orphan. You're a tad more dramatic than me. But we both like to imagine things. We spend most of our time seeking beauty in the world. We are pretty stubborn. My middle name is "Ann," and I feel that it looks dreadful without an "e". We both hide behind our books and stories sometimes.

"This is the most tragical thing that has ever happened to me."

I finally broke down and bought the "Anne of Green Gables" movie collection. I got the first two movies from the library last year and fell in love. I was going to buy the DVDs months ago, but when I went back to the store, they had taken it off the shelves. This week, when I saw it sitting there, I just bought it (though it was an awful lot of money). And I'm so glad I did. :)

I've watched the first two. I adore them both! They're so sweet and innocent. I love the characters, the setting, the music. I love that they make me laugh and keep me in tears a lot. I know that I'm all about the 1930s-50s, but lately I've been feeling pretty interested in the late 1800s-early 1900s as well (comes from reading that historical fiction and watching AOGG). The clothes are lovely.

And Gilbert. He's handsome, smart, and sweet. As much as I love Anne, sometimes I just want to hit her over the head with a slate to make her see that! :) He sacrifices for her and he's willing to wait until she comes to her senses. He's right up there with Mr. Darcy, and he's even better in the fact that he's humble and has a open, friendly way about him (forgive me, Mr. Darcy!).

I like what Diana said: "People's ideals change sometimes." I'm realizing how true that is.

"I don't want diamond sunbursts or marble halls. I only want you."

I haven't watched the third movie yet. I've never seen it before, actually. I've read people rant about it on Amazon, because it's so different from the books. But I've only ever read the first book, so I won't be able to compare them. What do guys think about the third movie: the continuing story?

Until next time,

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Hello, dear fall.

Yesterday my family took our yearly day trip to the mountains. We've been doing this for as long as I can remember! :) Every year, we visit familiar places, but we also visit new places. My dad used to deliver in this area, so he knows his way around. This field is so pretty that I take a picture of it every time we pass.

I love the contrast of the mountains. The impossibly green grass and the bright leaves. The twisting, scary roads and heights, and the peaceful little valleys, with the old farmhouses that have a backdrop of mountain and a little stream through the front yard.

By "mountains," I mean the Blue Ridge Mountains. We drove a little on the parkway, driving through Stuart, Meadows of Dan, and Floyd. We always have to stop at Lover's Leap.

Of course, there's this little legend. You can't see it in the picture, but the whole wall is covered with writing, initials, and declarations of love (despite the sign that says, "Do not deface the wall").

The view really is spectacular. The photos don't do it justice. The sky was also perfectly blue. And there were considerably more pretty trees and open restrooms than last year. This weekend was supposedly the "peak," but there was still a lot of green (then again, a lot of the trees had already lost their leaves).

"Summer is over and gone," repeated the crickets. "How many nights till frost?" sand the crickets. "Good-bye, summer, good-bye, good-bye!"...A little maple tree in the swamp heard the cricket song and turned bright red with anxiety.
-Charlotte's Web

A lovely leafy path.

I love these little wooden fences that are everywhere along the parkway.

Mabry Mill is always so sweet. Things were a little more active than last year. The water was turning the mill, and when we went inside, you could hear it splashing. There was also the biggest goose I have ever seen. He was sitting on a rock near the water, with his neck twisted so that his head rested on his back. It looked like he was sleeping, but he actually had his eyes open. And when anyone got too close, wow. It sounded like somebody was strangling him.

And of course we stopped at Nancy's Fudge. If you're ever nearby, you must stop. When you open the door, the most amazing smell hits you right in the face. :) They have tons of different fudge flavors, but the original chocolate is my favorite. I also always have to get a pack of the two tone pretzels- completely dipped in white chocolate, and then half of it's dipped in regular chocolate. Mm.

It was a good day.

And when we got home, I had received this book in the mail! I won it in a giveaway at Jenny B. Jones' blog. I'm so excited about reading it. :) Thanks so much, Jenny!

Until next time,

Friday, October 22, 2010

My first giveaway (now closed)...and the opening of "Sew Technicolor"!

It's finally here, guys. :)

The grand opening of my Etsy shop! It's called "Sew Technicolor" and you can visit it here.

Many of the things that I've posted here are available to purchase, plus some different items: wallets, bags, hoop art, iPod/cell phone cases, and aprons. Hopefully, I will be adding more items very soon!

I just wanted to thank all of you, my lovely blog readers. Besides my family, you all have been my biggest encouragers and supporters in my sewing and crafting. So, to show my gratitude, I've decided to host my first ever giveaway! :)

I will be giving away two of my handmade items, so there will be two winners drawn.

Prize #1: Winner's choice of a wallet from my Etsy shop

These are the wallets that are up now, but I hope to have more available before the contest is over. I didn't feel like I could pick one that everybody would love, so I decided to leave it up to the winner. :)

Prize #2: "Goodnight, Moon" Felt Hoop Art

One of a kind felt hoop art framed in an 8 inch embroidery hoop.

How to Enter:

Note: Please read the instructions very carefully!

Mandatory Entry: Visit "Sew Technicolor" and browse a little. Leave me a comment here telling me what your favorite item is.

Extra Entries:

- Heart (aka, favorite) "Sew Technicolor" on Etsy= 1 extra entry
- Post about this giveaway on your blog and leave the link here= 1 extra entry
- Leave a comment with the link to a lovely Etsy shop (your own or just one of your favorites)= 1 extra entry
- Follow my blog and leave me a comment telling me you do= 1 entry

Please leave a separate comment telling me each way that you enter!

The giveaway will end next Saturday, October 30th. I'll announce the winners the next day!

Note: This giveaway is now closed!

I'm really excited about this giveaway, guys! Hope you are, too. :)

Until next time,

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

I love.

I love finding new books at the bargain bookstore. I love looking through piles of them to find just the one that I really want. I love reading with my pumpkin candle lit so that the whole room smells like fall. I love exciting new adventures. I love getting something in the mail. I love my new boots. I love sleeping cats. I love driving to school in the rain listening to Norah Jones and Frank Sinatra. I love new crafting and sewing ideas. I love that I introduced my mom and grandparents to Anne of Green Gables this week. I love giggling babies and smiling preschoolers coloring purple apples. I love my new "Peanuts" checks. I love Technicolor leaves.

Keep your eyes open, guys! I will be posting my first ever giveaway and celebrating the grand opening of my Etsy shop sometime before the weekend! :) I'm so excited, and I hope you all are, too.

Until next time,

Monday, October 18, 2010

Favorite fall/Halloween movies!

I'm one of those people who is obsessed with traditions. And celebrating. And building up to a big event! I read the book before the movie comes out. I watch all of the previous movies before the movie comes out. I start pulling out the Christmas stuff on November 1st. I also make a lot of lists (that's what this whole post is about, actually). I'm a complete dork, I tell you.

Here are my must-see movies for celebrating the fall/Halloween season!

*Note: I know how a lot of Christians feel about celebrating Halloween. I don't really have a problem with it, to a certain extent. I used to love to dress up and go trick-or-treating! In fact, I would make a costume in a heartbeat if I had anywhere to wear it this year. Last year I did the whole 50s poodle skirt/neck scarf thing.*

It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown!

What would any season be without watching the corresponding "Peanuts" movie? I love that blockhead and the rest of the gang. This one is especially lovely, what with the "Lucy and Linus" theme at the beginning and Charlie Brown's holey costume and Snoopy's escapades. I'll post more about this movie after I watch it in a few days.

Arsenic and Old Lace

The perfect Halloween movie. Creepy, hilarious, clever, and very spoofy. There are graves in the cellar, a madman upstairs, arsenic poisons, a cemetary next door, a hideously scarred face, and a body in the window seat. I just watched it again yesterday! "Insanity runs in my family. It practically gallops."

Monsters, Inc.

Monsters just don't get any scarier than this. I adore this movie! It's a perfect example of the genius of Pixar. It's so witty and humorous. And yes, I always cry at the end. Go ahead and watch it and see if you don't, too.

Alice in Wonderland

Any version, take your pick (I recommend the new one, the Disney animated one, or the 1933 one). They're all odd enough to watch around Halloween.


Any excuse to watch one of my most favorite movies ever. It's a modernish fairy tale involving a disguise, and there are costumes included at the end. That's enough to classify it as a "Halloween movie."

Meet Me in St. Louis

This is one of those movies that, like "Holiday Inn" or "In the Good Old Summertime," includes Christmas scenes but also includes other seasons, so I justify watching it at all of them rather than just at Christmas. Honestly, "Meet Me in St. Louis" took a while to grow on me. Especially the Halloween scene...I just thought it was really strange. But now I love it, most horrible one. :)

Any Alfred Hitchcock Movie

Almost any of them would be fitting for Halloween..."Rebecca," "Spellbound," "Dial M for Murder," "Rear Window," "Suspicion," etc.

Pride and Prejudice

Look at Mr. Collins' face. If that's not scary, I don't know what is. Like I said before, any excuse to watch my most favorite movie ever. :)

And finally, if you're a Harry Potter fan (which I know a lot of my readers aren't, so don't be offended), you could have a whole HP movie marathon on Halloween. I think ABC Family or some other channel might play them around this time of year. I'll be watching them all through and rereading DH next month in anticipation of the new movie release! I'm so excited...Narnia and HP all within a month of each other!

So, what movies do you guys always watch during the fall?

Until next time,

Sunday, October 17, 2010

"A Bride in the Bargain."

Yesterday we stopped by the discount store in town, the one with the stacks of books and swing music constantly playing in the background. I picked up four books, and my mom and grandma got me a few for Christmas, too. They had a whole table full of Christian historical fiction, and many of them are pretty recently released books. Every book was $4.99 or less. A ton of Beverly Lewis and other authors that I see in the Family Christian Store catalog but have never read.

I love history and I love fiction, so I'm a little stumped as to why I don't read more historical fiction that I do. What I've read I've loved, but it's just not something I normally pick up. Maybe it's because books like these are everywhere and it's hard to guess what will be good and what won't be. So yesterday I ended up with:

1. "She Walks In Beauty," by Siri Mitchell (which I've meaning to read for some time, because the cover and plot summary were so lovely),
2. "How Do I Love Thee?" by Nancy Moser (because Elizabeth Barrett Browning's story is interesting to me and I loved "Just Jane"),
3. "Stagestruck," by Tomie dePaola (because I'm addicted to picture books and Tomie dePaola's illustrations are adorable and it was half off= $1.50!),

and this one:

I started it yesterday around noon and finished it up this morning (very reluctantly putting it down to go to sleep last night). I loved this book!

Anna Ivey is a nineteen year old girl whose whole life has been destroyed by the Civil War. She's working as a cook in Massachusetts when she reads about a young man, Asa Mercer, from Seattle who has come east to find several hundred women to go back with him. She signs a contract with Mercer to become the cook for a Seattle man's lumber team. Joe Denton is the lumberjack, and when he signed his contract with Mercer, he paid $300 for a wife from the east. His wife had died before she could follow him out west to Seattle, so he's about to lose his 640 acres of land because the law says a man must be married to be entitled to the acreage. Joe paid for a wife, but Anna signed on as a cook. She doesn't realize until she makes the long journey that she's expected to marry Joe, and she refuses. Both of them are struggling with issues from their past, so can Joe convince Anna to marry him in the mere weeks he has before he loses his land to another man?

This was a very enjoyable book. I loved the setting and the characters. There was some major chemistry between the two main characters, more so than I expected. :) A large part of the book focuses on the relationship between Anna and Joe, but things pick up with more action later on. I thought that the plot would be predictable, and it was to a certain extent, although there were definitely a few twists thrown in that I didn't expect. I don't want to ruin anything, but at one point close to the end, I didn't think that the author could draw everything into a satisfying conclusion. But she did! All of the loose ends were knotted up nicely, and this was a sweet little book. Quite a few parts made me teary. One of my favorite parts was the author's note at the end, where she tells about certain aspects of the story that came from real life. It was fascinating to see how she took several little historical instances and tied them together into a story!

I recommend "A Bride in the Bargain." I would give it 4.5 stars out of 5. I'll be posting reviews of the other two novels as soon as I read them. I've learned my lesson, so now I will be posting reviews immediately after reading a book or watching a movie, so everything is still fresh in my mind, rather than putting it off!

Until next time,

Friday, October 15, 2010

Sentimental heart.

Today was like experiencing deja vu.

One of my course assignments this semester is to do several observations in elementary schools. So I chose to go to my old elementary school. This may confuse some of you, as I claim to be a homeschooler. I was technically only homeschooled from 9th to 12th grade, but as I graduated as one and plan to homeschool my children, I think I deserve that label. I attended public school from kindergarten through 8th grade.

This was the first time I had been in the elementary school in eight or nine years. My first impression? Things were a lot smaller than I remembered. :) Or maybe it was just that I had grown. I got to observe all day in a third grade classroom, and the teacher was actually my reading teacher in third grade. She's so sweet that I really enjoyed being in her classroom. And one of the coolest things is that she is the first person who introduced me to Narnia. I remember sitting on the rug, listening to her read "The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe" and "The Magician's Nephew" to us. So you can imagine that I was thrilled today when I sat down in the rocking chair and saw a worn copy of LWW lying next to it. :) She's still reading Narnia tales to her students.

My last memories of public school were not good memories. At the time when I left public school, I was surrounded every day by filthy language, inappropriate behavior, complete disrespect and sometimes almost cruelty towards our teachers, and a lot of other bad things. Middle school left me with not-so-good memories.

I think I was expecting that today. I was expecting to see kids acting like that. But it wasn't like that at all. Those kids were so stinking adorable! I'm usually working with young children, as in under 5 years of age. I had no idea that these third graders would be so sweet and kind and funny! I felt attached to them after just spending one day in their class. They are at the point where they're really starting to grow up, and say clever things, but they still have an innocence and vulnerability about them that makes you just want to hug them. Some of them are so big and tall, and others are so tiny that I do a double take when I see them sitting at their desk reading a chapter book. And I love that they are still reading the same books that we read (and by the worn looks of some of the books, they are the exact same library copies that we read :), like Narnia and the Magic Tree House and Goosebumps and Mary-Kate and Ashley.

And I stood with my former teacher by the bathrooms as they took restroom breaks, and I caught a whiff of something. Guess what? Apparently the janitors still use the exact same cleaning chemicals brands. It's funny how a smell (not exactly a pleasant one) can remind you so strongly of something. It also reminded me of this huge blue N*Sync watch I had. It had a little screen and when you pushed a button, it played "Bye Bye Bye" and showed a pixelated version of the music video. Of course, I wasn't allowed to play the song in class, so the only time we could all gather around to hear our favorite boy band was during bathroom breaks.

Today was a good day. It reminded me that, while I'm still a full-blown homeschool advocate, my elementary years at a public school were pretty good. Those are all good memories that I'm glad I have. It also reminded me of how much I love kids. And how much I look forward to having a few of my own! I spent the day with third graders, then visited with an adorable one-year-old who got so tickled at something that she laughed the toddler equivalent of an adult belly laugh, then went to visit a perfect, gorgeous newborn baby (yes, the little fellow that I appliqued the onesie for) are so special. :)

Thanks for letting me reminisce. I love good memories. I wish there was some way to bottle them up, like Dumbledore, so that I could keep them in my pocket forever.

Until next time,

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Thank God.

"Luck" had nothing to do with it.

Until next time,