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Wednesday, October 1, 2014

31 Days of Writing: Welcome

It's that time of year again! It's time for 31 Days in October! If you remember, last year I took part in 31 Days and spent the entire month posting about Halloween! If you haven't read them before, you can go back and read any of the posts from that series!

This month, my topic will be 31 Days of Writing. I don't have all my posts planned out, but I know that quite a few of the posts will include a writing prompts. If you're so inclined, try some of the prompts out yourself!

Please check out all the other amazing bloggers joining in on the this project. There are so many topics to choose from!




Day 1: Welcome


I hope you enjoy reading what I come up with. Thank you, as always, for being here!



Friday, September 26, 2014

Favorite Friday Favorites

1. Tiny Detectives-






2. Maiden Voyage Clothing on Etsy-



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See more of their amazing designs here.

3. New Music-












4. Relish by Lucy Knisley-


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5. The Roosevelts on PBS- 


About three weeks ago I saw a promo for an upcoming miniseries PBS was showing about the Roosevelt family. Rick & I don't have cable, but I looked on the PBS website and they didn't disappoint.

This 14 hour Ken Burns film, narrated by Peter Coyote, chronicles the lives of Theodore, Eleanor & Franklin Roosevelt and the history of a country that they forever altered. Meryl Streep voices Eleanor, Paul Giammati voices Theodore & Edward Herman voices Franklin.  I haven't finished all seven episodes, but what I've watched is fantastic. If you love history or excellent filmmaking, you need to check this out. 

You can watch all seven episodes on the PBS website.

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Happy Friday, Friends!
xoxoxoxo

Monday, September 22, 2014

Love Letter to a Song

Love Letter to a Song is a new series I'm super excited about! Music is a powerful thing and I have no end of songs that can instantly transport me back to a specific moment in time. Sort of like a musical time machine! In this series, I will pick one of my favorite songs/albums and explain why I love it so much and what it reminds me of! Simple as that! Read on & enjoy! 

In 2008, I went through one of the worst break-ups of my life. Maybe THE worst breakup. I lost about 15 pounds, cut my hair super short and stayed up late watching TV & movies because I couldn't sleep at night. I threw myself into my work. I wrote some of my best depressing, emo poetry. I had a lot of time on my hands to contemplate my eternal loneliness. Hello drama queen, party of one! Am I painting a picture for you?

During this time I listened to a lot of music. I found some of my all-time bands during this point in my life and re-discovered some of my old favorites. One weekend my mom came to visit and I bought a copy of Rilo Kiley's 2002 album, The Execution of All Things. This album spoke to my broken heart and soothed my aching soul. This album was upbeat, yet sad (dance music for the depressed) and one song in particular became the anthem for my breakup.





Sometimes in the morning I am petrified and can't move
Awake but cannot open my eyes
And the weight is crushing down on my lungs I know I can't breathe
And hope someone will save me this time
And your mother's still calling you insane and high
Swearing it's different this time
And you tell her to give in to the demons that possess her
And that God never blessed her insides
Then you hang up the phone and feel badly for upsetting things
And crawl back into bed to dream of a time
When your heart was open wide and you loved things just because
Like the sick and the dying

And sometimes when you're on, you're really fucking on
And your friends they sing along and they love you
But the lows are so extreme that the good seems fucking cheap
And it teases you for weeks in it's absence
But you'll fight and you'll make it through
You'll fake it if you have to
And you'll show up for work with a smile
You'll be better you'll be smarter
And more grown up and a better daughter
Or son and a real good friend
You'll be awake and you'll be alert
You'll be positive though it hurts
And you'll laugh and embrace all your friends
You'll be a real good listener
You'll be honest, you'll be brave
You'll be handsome, you'll be beautiful
You'll be happy

Your ship may be coming in
You're weak but not giving in
To the cries and the wails of the valley below
Your ship may be coming in
You're weak but not giving in
And you'll fight it you'll go out fighting all of them...

A Better Son/Daughter accurately depicted the daily struggle of moving on when I had no real desire to move at all. Jenny Lewis understood the "fake it till you make it" philosophy that I had adopted after my ultimate rejection. Perhaps she herself had felt the same way when her and Blake Sennett broke up? I thought way too much about the supposed similarities between myself and Ms. Lewis. Reality had no place in my recovery. While Jenny crooned over a snare drum about perseverance despite weakness, I found myself able to hold my head up in solidarity! Had this happened just a few years later, I might have even fist pumped! This song was a game-changer. 

I recently heard that this song might be about bipolar disorder, but I've never heard anyone from RK confirm that. It doesn't really matter anyway. Regardless of the real meaning behind this tune, it will forever remind of the extra push I needed to get back to basics and back to myself. All jokes aside, I can't remember another time in my life that I felt so utterly alone. Knowing (even imagining that knowledge) that someone else may have gone through the same thing as me was so comforting.  Now that I'm a little older, wiser & happily married, when this song comes on one of my playlists I can finally feel nostalgic for a time when a scared young woman stood on the precipice of one of the most wonderful, life-changing times in her life.  A few years later, I went to see Rilo Kiley in Denver. When they began this song, it was as if the mass of people around me disappeared. It was just me and the band and they were singing directly to me. I sincerely hope they could feel my gratitude because I was vibing it out pretty hard. Dare I say a few tears were shed. 

I will be eternally grateful to Jenny Lewis and the boys for convincing me that I'm stronger than I ever thought I could be.


Keep your chin up, kid. 

Friday, September 19, 2014

Favorite Friday Favorites

1. Two Good Reminders This Week-



(link)

2. New Music- 






3. My Purse Might Be Exactly Like This-


(link)

4. The Third Season of New Girl Hit Netflix-


My life is, once again, complete. 




5. Ahem.....-





Happy Friday, Friends!
xoxoxoxoxoxoxoxoxo

Friday, September 12, 2014

Favorite Friday Favorites

1. Asymmetrical Hair-


I'm growing my hair out of a pixie cut and boy, have I hit an awkward stage. Now all I can do is daydream about these cute, lop-sides dos. 

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2. This-


(link)


3. New Music-














4. Amen-


(link)


5. My Brother, Rob Walker-


My brother is always one of my favorites, though I don't always put him on the list. He was my first best friend, a constant inspiration and source of encouragement & literally one of the best men I know. 

We've had good times & the worst times, but no matter what came our way, we've always handled it together. I have, of course, been the bratty little sister. But I like to think, that as we've grown older, we're only gotten closer. And even in my brattiest of moments, he never dealt with me harshly or gave me any cause to resent him. We share the same dark sense of humor & I can think of no one else that I can finish the sentences of. We've been told we speak our own language when we're together & I suppose that's probably true. 

As I clean & plan for the baby shower I am throwing for Rob and my sister-in-law, Denise, I think about if he was that amazing of a brother to me, how much better of a father he will be to the little sea monkey in Denise's stomach? I love you, Goat-Boy. No matter what. Forever. 










Bonus:


Read this little gem: 

Thursday, September 11, 2014

10 Books That Changed Your Life

There's a challenge floating around Facebook, asking people to list the top 10 books that changed their lives (in no particular order). I got tagged today by my good friend, Kelly and thought I might share my list with any of you that I am not Facebook friends with. Now, there are technically more than 10 books on this list, but I just had to bend the rules a little! Enjoy!

1. You Can’t Catch Death: A Daughter’s Memoir by Ianthe Brautigan





2. Watchmen by Alan Moore
3. The Jessica Darling Series by Meagan McCafferty (Technically 5 books)
4. The Stand, The Shining & It by Stephen King (I’m really cheating here)






5. Maus by Art Spiegelman
6. Postcards by Annie Proulx
7. Assassination Vacation by Sarah Vowell
8. Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro
9. Walk Two Moons by Sharon Creech 






10. Discipline & Punish: The Birth of the Prison by Michel Foucault
11. The Great Divorce by C.S. Lewis (There I go cheating again)



What would be on you list? Do we share any of the same, life-changing books? I would love to hear about them!! 

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Top 5 Unconventional Love Stories

Now, I love myself a traditional love story. I have spent manys the evening watching You've Got Mail or Dirty Dancing, but some of my favorite film love stories are pretty quirky. Here are several of my favorite unconventional love stories, with several bonus titles at the very end. Enjoy!!!

1. Benny & Joon (1993)-


Benny & Joon is a film about two different kinds of love; romantic & familial love. This movie is funny & romantic, but it's also very real & at times quite sad. Benny & Juniper Pearl are a brother & sister who have lived together since the tragic death of their parents.

Joon has schizophrenia, is a pyromaniac & is a very talented artist. Benny, a mechanic, is considering putting Joon in a facility where she can be cared for & thrive. While he loves his sister, he feels like his life can't start while he's constantly taking care of her.

It's at this time that Benny & Joon meet Sam, a young man who is obsessed with old movies & physical comedy. Sam brings new life into Benny & Joon's world and becomes very special to Joon in particular. Sam becomes the catalyst for so much needed change in Benny & Joon's life. If you like quirky, artsy stories, check out Benny & June.


 2. P.S. I Love You (2007)-


P.S. I Love You is about a young widow who looses her husband to cancer, after being married for almost 10 years. Following a whirlwind romance in Ireland, Holly & Gerry marry at a very young age. We see, through a series of flashbacks, Holly & Gerry's early courtship, and it's through these moments that we get the bulk of the love story. While many people assumed this was just another Hollywood tear-jerker, the cast in this film keep it from becoming a sappy tear fest. The balance of humor to drama is expertly executed. 

A large portion of this film takes place in Ireland & the country almost becomes part of the cast. If you're looking for a beautiful love story with an emotional twist, check this one out! 


3. Lars & the Real Girl (2007)-


Lars & the Real Girl is one of my favorite films of all time. The first time I saw it, I was so uncomfortable until about the halfway mark, when all the awkwardness finally made sense.

Lars Lindstrom is a shy, awkward young man who doesn't have many friends & isn't romantically involved with anyone. He lives near is brother & pregnant sister-in-law and they are often very worried about him. When he finally brings home a girl to meet his family, they realize they have had serious cause to worry. Lars & the Real Girl is about community, the process of grief & allowing people back into your heart after you've been hurt. 



4. Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind (2004)-


Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind is a story about the memory of love & what that memory can do to us. Joel & Clementine are an unlikely couple who find comfort in one another's idiosyncrasies. 

After a falling out, Clementine breaks up Joel & undergoes a process that wipes the memory of him from her mind. Understandably hurt, Joel decides to undergo the same process. The bulk of the movie takes place in Joel's mind while the process is happening. Joel realizes, mid-procedure, that even if Clementine never loves him again, he loves her too much to erase the memories he has of her. 

This film, directed by Michel Gondry, has a very dreamy feel and even if you're not crazy about the story, I hope you will love the cinematography, style & soundtrack. 



5. Secretary (2002)-


Secretary is probably the most unconventional love story on this list. I will be honest with you and tell you that this film may not be fore you. Let's just get this out of the way. This film earns it's R-rating because of sexual situations. This film follows Maggie Gyllenhaal as Lee Holloway, a shy twenty something who gets released from a mental health facility, where she has been recovering from an accident caused by her self-harm habits. In hopes of finding some independence, Lee applies for a secretary job working for the odd attorney,  Mr. Grey, played by James Spader.

While working for Grey, Lee becomes involved in a sadomasochistic relationship with him. Through this relationship, Lee becomes more confident in her personal & professional life, ultimately resulting in self-discovery & acceptance. While the film is interesting on many levels, the real reason to watch this film for the performances of Gyllenhaal & Spader. They take a story that could quickly devolve into something exploitive and turn it into a compelling character-focused tale of two people so lost in their own self-loathing, who find love & self-acceptance in the place they least expect it.



Honorable Mention:

  • High Fidelity (2000)
  • Let the Right One In (2008)
  • Wall-E (2008)
  • The Science of Sleep (2006)
  • Lost in Translation (2003)
  • The Royal Tenenbaums (2001)
  • Ruby Sparks  (2012)

Are there any films you would add to this list? I would love to hear about them! 
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