Sunday, July 26, 2009

Lovely Reading

I don't know if any of you have watched much Japanese anime. I haven't watched many, but the ones I have seen have been both strikingly beautiful and extremely bizzare at the same time. Very dream-like. There is one anime in particular that I could watch over and over again called "Howl's Moving Castle". It's one of those stories that sends your imagination soaring off in giddy wonder. I have always had an overly-active imagination, and I am particularly fond of a story into which my overly-active imagination can thouroughly indulge itself.

Wow...look at this artwork! It takes my breath away.

Imagine my delight when yesterday, as I was looking through the young readers section at the bookstore, I stumbled across a BOOK with the same title! What?! I could hardly believe my eyes! I had no idea that the movie had been inspired by a book. I had to buy it.

I read the whole book this afternoon. Whilst shirking many other things that I "should" have been doing, I might add. Ah well!

To be honest, I have been feeling rather crummy lately and I think a "curl up in a cozy spot with a great book" day was definitely in order. It has cheered me up significantly, and I now feel ready to face the new week with a smile and a nod. Hoorah for good literature!

So how did the book compare to the movie (or the movie to the book)?
Well, I love the movie for the stunning animation, beautiful score and fantastic voice overs (Christian Bale!, Lauren Bacall!, Billy Crystal, Emily Mortimer, Jean Simmons). I also love the director Hiyao Miyazaki's portayal of the two main characters, Howl and Sophie. However, I think I liked the book better (surprise, surprise). ;) I found the book to be a bit more light-hearted. The movie takes on sort-of an "anti-war" message, with Howl bravely trying to stop the war from going on. There is no war in the book, and the great wizard Howl is actually quite a coward, always trying to "slither" his way out of doing (and facing) unpleasant things. All of the characters were pleasantly and humanly flawed. I love that. It makes a book so much more relatable. All in all it was a fun and easy read, and quite thought provoking.

Usually, I would recommend reading the book first. I always hate it when someone's first impression of a book is made by a movie. However I believe I will make an exception in this case. I say either one would be a great choice.


Saturday, July 25, 2009

A new movie for my favorite list!

What a fantastic movie. Such purpose! Such perseverence! It left me feeling hopeful and confident.....and wishing that there were more people about with just a tiny bit of Howard Roark's passion and courage in this world.

The movie is about a fight for individualism in a country where the collective is beginning to take precedence over every other concern. Howard Roark, a brilliant architect and artist, is pummelled from all sides by the media and the public for his new, modern and ingenious architectual creations. Talent and vision must be squelched, for the good of the public. His determination and utter disregard for the public and his eventual and amazing success are a pleasure to watch.


Saturday, July 18, 2009

This is why I will never meet anyone.

So today I was supposed to go to this singles group BBQ event, but I decided instead to go up to the mountains with my family and get peaches. We had a delightful time!

John, Sylvie and Jenny are cozy in the van!

Little Cael fell asleep on the way.

Check out the

On the way up to the mountains. How magnificent!

We finally arrived at the peach & apple orchard. They sold peaches (duh),


and corn.

Have you ever tried a peach pie like this?

In the orchard parking lot we met a very friendly horse.

The gang (minus Sarah and Ben) outside of the peach orchard. Check out the beautiful scene behind us!

Josh, Cael and Sylvie

Sylvie was trying to get Cael to laugh and look at the camera. She did not succeed.

We bought dozens of fresh peaches!

And a watermelon, too.

Esme was amazed at the size of her fritter. It was about the same size as her head!

Sylvie with her fritter.

Peach pie. Oh, and my sister Jenny.

Eli displays his tasty apple fritter.

Esme eating her apple donut. Mmm!

We were having such a great time after stopping for peaches that we decided to just keep going north. Fort Mountain was the next destination! We stopped at a scenic overpass. I was afraid one of the kids would roll down the mountain, but they didn't.

Scenic overpass---wow.

We saw some amazing fungus on a tree at Fort Mountain. The photograph does not do the color justice. This was actually various shades of a bright mustard yellow!

Handsome fellas: Joshua, Eli and John

Cael was happy in his stroller!

Skylar, aka "Monkey Woman"

Cicada exoskeleton...yuck! I mean, cool!

Can you say "loogie"?

A butterfly wing. John kept trying to blow it out of my hand. Little turd.

On the way back down the mountain we saw a baby black bear!

I mean, who wants to go to a crummy old singles group anyway? Pooh. ;)


Thursday, July 16, 2009


What a guy. :)

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

L.I.G.H.T. Concert

Yes, you read that right. The Barger Sisters are performing. Yikes!

Babies and Embriodery

I love embriodery.

Mt batiste arrived in the mail a few days ago, and I have begun my peasant blouse! I used a Simplicity pattern from the 70's. I went ahead and sewed the front and back bodices to the sleeves using french seams and finished the top edge. Once I finish the embriodery I will complete the side seams and insert the drawstring in the neck. Inspiration for the embriodery came from an Anthropologie mug I have. :)

I am holding Cael right now and he is being so wiggly! This boy has turned into a regular monkey. He's crawling around and pulling himself up on things and putting everything in his mouth. This age always makes me nervous, especially with so many people leaving things around for babies to get into.

I will leave you with a picture of cuteness.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

New Patterns!

I've listed a few new patterns on eBay (finally!) Check them out here!

It has been a loooong week. Back to the grind after a nice week off. Alas!
I've been working hard to organize a "back to school" charity concert for L.I.G.H.T. Ministry the past month or so. Everything is coming together very nicely. We have some great musicians volunteering their time and talent to benefit those in need. It is a very cool thing.

Thus...I have had little (or no) time to sew. I'm hoping to be able to start work on Skylar's peasant-style sundress soon. I also ordered some batiste to make a peasant blouse for myself. I'm going to do pretty embriodery around the neck and sleeve edges. Fun!

Next garment to copy? Check out this AMAZING skirt. Wow. I am in love.

Have a fantabulous weekend!