Thursday, 30 December 2010

Books and Happy New Year

I have ultimately decided that book stores are the kryptonite to my hard earned univeristy funds. I have just recently gotten back from an AMAZING trip to the book store (really, all trips are amazing) and brought back TWO, count 'em, TWO AMAZING books. I absolutely love bargain books because I pick up a book I would never think to read and go "Hey! Five bucks!" and end up LOVING it. (If my caps is bothering you, SORRY!!!) Anyway, neither of the books I bought were on sale, but they were good prices. And one of my most favourite books of all time was a bargain book (The Cry of the Icemark by Stuart Hill). So the books that I brought home with me today are The Storm Witch by Violette Malan and His Majesty's Dragon by Naomi Novik in the Termaire series. They both sound REALLY good so I'll blog about the results of my reading at a later date. Before those books I have several other books I need to read. They are: Sherlock Holmes by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, A Tale of Two Cities, David Copperfield, Great Expectations, and Oliver Twist by Charles Dickens.

Anyway, to all book lovers and non-book lovers, I wish you all a very happy new year!

Quote of the day: It is not a novel to be thrown aside lightly. It should be thrown aside with great force. - Dorothy Parker

Thursday, 23 December 2010

Holidays

I just wanted to wish everyone happy holidays, merry Christmas, happy kwanzah, happy hanukkah, and happy what-ever-else-you-celebrate! I wish everone a happy new year and great joy during their holidays, no matter what you celebrate.

Quote of the day: The only bad thing about a holiday is it is followed by a non-holiday. - Anon

Wednesday, 8 December 2010

Snow Day Number 3


It was made official last night on the news: today is considered another snow day! Practically everything is shut down. The city buses aren't running, shops are going to be closing early (again) and we're all stuck at home getting ready to murder each other. Seriously, I'm sick of being at home. I want to see my friends!!! The snowplows have been out clearing a lot of the main roads but not all of the side roads have gotten cleared. On Monday we couldn't get cleared because a transport truck had gotten stuck on a hill (there are about 5 hills where I live) and a plow couldn't get through. Yesterday we got one twice and I'm hoping we get another one today.



This road was unplowed yesterday and is still unplowed today I believe.

My brother and I made a snow fort yesterday in one of the snow piles we created from shovelling snow. It took up a lot of time and was a lot of fun making! It even fits the two of us inside of it! That's two, count'em TWO, people over five feet inside a tiny space.



This is the entrance into the fort.


This was taken inside of the fort of another entrance.

This is the entrance leading out into the driveway.

The snow really isn't bad today so I'm not entirely sure why they called a snow day, but it's fine with me. As long as I get to go to school tomorrow, I think I'll be ok.

So, here are a few pictures of the big snow fall in London! It was also a record snow fall, by the way. We haven't seen this much snow since the 70's and three snow days in a row are very hard to come by.

This was a neigbour's driveway. They had a bulldozer in it for some reason.


This was behind Blockbuster.

This was a major road. We were coming back from picking up a Christmas tree.


Someone's car is buried in snow.

Quote of the day: No snow flake in an avalanche ever feels responsible. - Stanislaw Lec

Tuesday, 7 December 2010

Snow Day Number 2

Hooray! So for the first time in a loooong time the city of London has had two snow days in a row! Count em, 2. My mom remembers when they had three snow days in a row, but that was out in the country.

The snow just keeps on coming. I believe there were over 120 car crashes yesterday, and more to come. We had to shovel the driveway multiple time because the snow just kept falling. Visibility is probably worse today than it was yesterday. I'm looking forward to going tobogganing some time today. Looking out my window right now the snow is halfway up the back gate so my brother and I would have to shovel our way to the door . I think just about every kid in London was hoping there would be another snow day. Hooray for wishful thinking!

Well, while everyone is playing in the snow, I'll keep working on some homework so that I'm not behind and then I'll go out once I'm done.

Happy December every one!

Quote of the day: We build statues out of snow, and weep to see them melt. - Sir Walter Scott

Monday, 6 December 2010

Snow Day!!!

Hello bloggers! Today is a beautiful snow day in London, Ontario, Canada! And no, I didn't forget the "y" in "snow". Today is a snow day! Ever since entering high school there has been one snow day each year (excepting last year). It's not even that bad though, just lots of snow blowing around and screwing up your visibility. There's probably only about two feet on the ground, which really isn't too bad. I mean, this is Canada for gosh sakes. It's not winter if there isn't a snow day or a blizzard.

I remember one year when I was about ten or eleven we had a big snow day and there was four feet of snow on the ground. Another year we had an ice storm. It might look pretty, but it's very dangerous.

Yup, it's not quite winter without a snow day and you can't have winter holidays without snow.

So for all of you people in warm climates, or warmer climates, then good for you for being in a place that's sunny and bright and warm and I honestly hope you have fun (because I kind of want to be there for march break). But us Canadians, we're enjoying our white snowy snow day today.

Quote of the day: The first snow fall is not only an event, it is a magical event. You go to bed in one kind of world and wake up in another quite different, and if this is not enchantment then where is it to be found? - J. B. Priestley

Sunday, 28 November 2010

Craziness

I have found myself among homework, projects, reading and writing. I have also discovered that I need to learn to prioritize (since I am a bit of a procrastinator). Homework comes first since it's the most short-term thing. Projects come next, in order of due dates. Reading is only if I've finished everything I can and writing is even after that.

Summing up all of my homework I have four essays, a creative response and a collage that are due before the Christmas holidays. The creative response is due on Wednesday, so that's what is taking priority in my life at the moment.

It really is quite a lot, but I find that if I work on one thing at a time then I can actually get stuff done, procrastinator or not.

I've also found some awesomely quirky music to listen to while I do this homework. I have recently discovered a band called CocoRosie and their music is amazing, in my opinion. So, here is the music video of their most recent song.
video

Quote of the day: Music washes away from the soul the dust of everyday life. - Berthold Auerbach

Wednesday, 17 November 2010

Spells Quote

I have nothing to say and absolutely love this quote in Spells by Aprilynne Pike so I thought I should share it with you all.

He looked down at her crumpled Spanish book. "Studying?" he asked. "It looks like your book is taking it pretty hard."
"I was, till I got distracted trying to kill you with the butcher knife."
"Oh, yes, that was fun. We must do it again sometime."

You must read it to find out what is going on here!! This is also my Quote of the Day.

Tuesday, 16 November 2010

Books


I tend to read author blogs and one day I was reading Aprilynne Pike's blog when I noticed she was having a book giveaway. All I had to do was comment saying "I want to be entered" and I would be entered into the contest. This I did and waited patiently for the results. I wasn't too worried because I never win anything. At all. The winners were five other people, which I didn't mind because, like I said, I never win anything. BUT, the winners had to respond by that Saturday and the second place winner hadn't responded so everyone got bumped up. This meant fifth place was open (by the way it wasn't as if you get less the lower the place). I had won! I was so excited I e-mailed her right away so I wouldn't miss anything. That was October 25. My package arrived yesterday and I was so excited!! I started reading Spells right away! I also got Dark Flame by Alyson Noel and The Body Finder by Kimberly Derling. Dark Flame is the fourth book in the Immortals series so now I have to go out and buy the first three books! It's just wondrous to actually win something and have the prize be books. I absolutely love to read and this meant I didn't have to go out and buy more books right away. So far Spells is incredible. I haven't been able to put it down all day. I can't wait for when Illusions comes out and I definitely can't wait to read the other books I won.

Moral: Keep trying! If you keep trying, you will succeed, no matter what people say. Whether it's entering contests, passing tests or getting a job, stick to it and it will happen. Think positive thoughts!

Quote of the day: The vision that you glorify in your mind, the ideal that you enthrone in your heart - this you will build you life by, and this you will become. - James Allen

Monday, 8 November 2010

Slow Computers

I was talking to a girl in one of my classes and it turns out that we both hate slow computers. Right now my laptop is being lame and taking forever to load when just four hours ago it was working just fine and at normal speed. I think it's safe to say that many people despise slow computers. I think of myself as a relatively patient person, however when I have a seminar that must be presented the next day I tend to get a little impatient. So here I am, waiting for my computer to stop being stupid (which it has been for about an hour and forty five minutes). Hopefully it will work tomorrow since I have to present my seminar at 8:30 in the morning. I'm crossing my fingers!!

Quote of the day: Whom computers would destroy, they must first drive mad. - Anon

Friday, 29 October 2010

Halloween

I just wanted to wish everyone a very happy Halloween! If you don't celebrate Halloween, then that's fine too, I respect that. Looking back on past Halloweens, I think that it has certainly become more commercialized and less of what it truly is. I've been Simba, Nala, a unicorn, a witch, Cinderella, a vampire, a devil, Princess Minnie, Baby Spice, Rachel Green and Batwoman. I'm sure there are other costumes in there that I don't remember, but those are the key costumes I do remember. Since entering high school, I have been exposed to the fact that Halloween is becoming something a lot more . . . how do I say this without being offensive to anyone? Well, sexy and rather slutty. It's also become rather offensive. Yesterday was the Halloween dance at our school and two boys came as nuns. Now I'm not Catholic, but I still found it rather offensive since I am a Christian. Another boy came as Joseph, I believe. That I find rather religiously offensive and I'm sure quite a few others might have found it offensive as well. What happened to being scary and frightening people? Wasn't it trick or treat? I just wanted to remind everyone of Halloween's origins(which I find rather fascinating).

Halloween has roots in the Celtic festival of Samhain (Sah-ween) and the Christian holiday All Saints' Day. The actual word "Halloween" was first seen sometime during the 16th century and is a variation of the Scottish "All-Hallows-Even" (evening), the night before "All-Hallows-Day". Up until recently the spelling has usually been Hallowe'en. According to Celtic beliefs, October 31 is the one day of the year that spirits and the dead are able to cross over into the land of the living. These spirits could harm the living and even take them back to the land of the dead. In order to prevent this and confuse the spirits, anyone who left their houses would dress up as ghosts or spirits. October 31 was also a time when spirits could give messages to people. These Halloween traditions were brought to Canada (and other countries) through Scottish and Irish immigrants.

Quote of the day: Shadows of a thousand years rise again unseen, Voices whisper in the trees, “Tonight is Halloween!” – Dexter Kozen

Monday, 11 October 2010

Canadians, eh?

It has come to my attention (especially on this wonderful thanksgiving, happy thanksgiving everyone!!!, and after reading Cake Wrecks) that there are some misconceptions about Canadians.
1. Yes, we say "eh". Personally, I don't say it that often and I don't hear it that often either. Although when we were in Laguardia I said I was going to try to sound American and ended up saying "eh" in the sentence somewhere.

2. Another thing is that we live in igloos. I'm sorry, only people up North, way way up North (like, in Nunavut and Baffin Island) live in igloos. And that's only during the winter. And most of those people are Inuit. It does not snow all the time, sorry. We do have our four seasons and I'm grateful for all of them. If there was no spring, summer or autumn I think I would kill myself from exposure to too much snow.

3. Maple syrup is good stuff. And I'm talking about real maple syrup, not the crappy stuff you find in grocery stores (sorry Aunt Jemima). It is pure sugar. Anyone who can try it should. We don't put it on everything. I only put it on pancakes and waffles. I'm not sure what else you would put it on.

4. Our Mounties are not all across Canada. I think they stick to British Columbia, a province.

5. We have ten provinces and three territories. It seems like they should be smaller since USA has 50 states (whaaat?? 50??) but they're actually bigger. It's crazy, I know, but you can fit Texas in Ontario and still have room for more. So Texans, there are places bigger.

6. Poutine is gross, in my opinion, but many Canadians enjoy it. It is a Quebec invention. I went to Montreal last February and saw the factory that makes amazing poutine and apparently there is more than one type of poutine.

7. We pronounce z as "zed" but I say "zee" so I guess that makes me slightly "Canerican".

8. All Canadians are not hockey fans; hockey isn't even our national sport. It's lacrosse, which is a Native Canadian sport, did you know that? I learned that in the sixth grade.

9. As far as I know most schools in Canada go like this: JK, SK, grades 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8 in elementary school (although some are split up) and then grades 9, 10, 11, 12 in high school. Some places do have middle school, it is not just an American thing.

10. We don't all love beer. My mom is proof of that. She'd rather drink wine, and even that is on occasion.

11. We don't live with polar bears. I don't know where that idea came from, but polar bears are vicious wild animals (even more vicious than grizzly bears) and it would not be wise to live with one.

12. We don't all smoke. Which is a strange stereotype. I actually think smoking is one of the most disgusting things a person can do to their body. You're prematurely killing yourself. Uncool guys.

13. We do not have one person per square km. Just because we have a large country and not as many people live here as they do in the States doesn't mean we have ten people living in each province (that's rather vague). There are small towns in Ontario with more than ten people so ha.

14. We are not all lumberjacks. But we do provide most of the world's lumber. Piss us off and there goes your fuel and furniture.

15. We're not fat. If fatness is going to be stereotyped to a country it should be the States because they eat marshmallow and peanut butter sammiches. However, I know for a fact that not all Americans are fat either. I may be Canadian, but I do travel around.

16. We are not monarchists. We have a prime minister and yes, we are technically ruled by the Queen, but she has very little say in Canadian politics.

17. We do have water toilets. I'm not sure what other kind of toilet we would have. Chamber pots are kind of out of date, don't you think?

18. We are not wimps. If, according to stereotypes, we are all lumberjacks and live with polar bears in igloos then we should be able to kill someone by just looking at them. We are polite. Not wimps.

19. We don't hunt baby seals. That is a horrible stereotype. Yes, there is seal hunting, but that is being reduced and they hunt seals in Alaska too so don't be so quick to judge. Hunting baby seals is horrible.

20. Canadians are expected to learn French from grade 4-9. It's optional past those grades. Not everyone speaks those languages fluently. It would be kind of stupid to only speak English though if there is a French province in the country, and vice versa. I take French because it means I'll have a better chance to get a job when I graduate university and I can actually speak to people when I'm in France or Quebec.

21. We don't hate Americans. Whoever said that must either hate Canadians or Americans. If we hated Americans there would've been war by now and since apparently we're wimps we would've lost. We don't hate Americans. We were all English colonists at one point in time, no matter how hard Americans try to deny that fact.

22. We don't all snowboard. I'm rather frightened of a snowboard and run away from them. I do, however, have friends who snowboard but it's hard to snowboard when the only skiing and snowboarding mountain is miles away.

23. We're not all Inuit. Inuits are Natives and I'm pretty sure we're not all Natives. Plus, the Inuit live in Yukon, Northwest Territory and Nunavut. Everywhere else they're just called natives. Or Indians, as they were falsely named.

24. We're not all socialists either. I'm sure if you asked around you'd find SOMEONE who is, though.

25. We're not jealous of Americans. We have free health care. They should be jealous of us.

26. We are not uneducated. We rock the schools. We are polite educated people. And we don't carry firearms around with us everywhere and drink beer while driving. Seriously, who does that?

Anyway, just wanted to set the record straight. Hope I didn't hurt anyone's feelings (no sarcasm). It just gets annoying when people have a certain image of Canadians and when they see you they're like "oh" and they're let down.

Quote of the day: Good thoughts bear good fruit, bad thoughts bear bad fruit. - James Allen

Saturday, 9 October 2010

Thanksgiving

Since it is the thanksgiving weekend there will be lost of turkey and good food to eat. I also have quite a few projects I need to work on, a journal I need to write and a poster to create. I am working tomorrow and my dad is trying to recruit me to help put away the patio furniture. You could say I'm busy.

Thank gosh I have monday off of school.

My projects: I have to make some phone calls and e-mails and begin working on my dance ISP (individual study project, culminating project). This is going on for 8 weeks, but it should get started now because I have to tell my teacher what I've got done so far. In Canadian lit I have to make a literary theory poster on New Historicism/Cultural with a partner who won't be here at all this weekend. My journal is on the movie The Red Violin which is rather intense. I also have a seminar on wednesday with two partners.

I am going to go crazy this weekend.

Quote of the day: There is a harmony in autumn, and a luster in its sky, which through the summer is not heard or seen, as if it could not be, as if it had not been! - Percy Bysshe Shelley

Thursday, 23 September 2010

United Way Football Game (Redfeather)

Today was South Collegiate Institute's Redfeather game. It's actually called the United Way football game, but no one ever calls it that. It's too long. We were playing against MTS (Mother Teresa), who we also happened to play when I was in grade nine, three years ago. Our colours are garnet and gray, so everyone was wearing red, silver, white, gray, or burgundy. We actually had more people attending the game than MTS. In grade nine our team lost and we also lost this year, but not as badly. Redfeather is actually more of a social event than a football game. There just happens to be a football game going on in the background. I actually had lots of fun today. I find the bus ride over is always more fun than the actual game, but maybe that's just me. It's hard to wrap my head around the fact that this will be my last Redfeather game at SCI. Anyway, so our Redfeather game was today, we lost to MTS (no big surprise there, MTS is ridiculously awesome) and I enjoyed screaming cheers at the other team and taking pictures with my friends all dressed up in our school's colours. It was pretty good day all in all.

Quote of the day:Our attitude towards what has happened to us in life is the important thing to recognize. Once hopeless, my life is now hope-full, but it did not happen overnight. The last of human freedoms, to choose one's attitude in any given set of circumstances, is to choose one's own way. - Victor Frankl, "Man's Search for Meaning"

Wednesday, 8 September 2010

Thursday Post

Today was the third day of grade twelve. It was pretty intense, I must say. But not really since we were still discussing what would be happening this semester. I honestly think dance will be my hardest course this semester because I've already got about five things going on in the next few weeks for it.

In literature I'll be reading The Oxford Anthology of Canadian Literature, Fifth Business, The English Patient, Yesterday the Children Were Dancing and some other novels. I'm pretty excited because these are all good books.

In English I'll be reading Echoes 12 (textbook), Hamlet/King Lear, Heart of Darkness, The Theban Plays, and The Jade Peony/The Kite Runner. These are also good books.

I'll be doing quite a bit of writing as well so I don't think my writing will be hindered by any lack of practice due to courses or homework. I also had my first bit of homework for the year today. I had to finish some questions on "Canada: Case History" by Earle Birney. It was fairly easy, but I had to look up some literary terms because my brain was still in "summer mode".

Quote of the day: The trouble with people is not that they don't know but that they know so much that aint so. - Josh Billings

Monday, 6 September 2010

Grade Twelve Here I Come!

Tomorrow is the first day of school for my brother and I. He will be starting grade nine (and is admittedly frightened, which is normal) and I will be starting grade twelve (and am admittedly excited, which is also normal).

I am excited for all of the awesome grade twelve activities, such as PROM, and since I'm in grade twelve dance I will be helping to organize this year's dance show!!!

I've taken the time this summer to really organize my room so that it's not so messy. I've found over the past few days that being more organized helps me feel more organized. I feel like I could take on the world right now (but I won't). I've decided to be more organized and also become more focused on my schoolwork this year since it's my last year and I need to have good grades for my university/college applications.

Since school will be starting I also won't have as much time for writing in my spare time, but I will be doing a lot of writing this year anyway. I am taking grade 12 university English, Canadian literature and creative writing. I am also taking gr. 12 dance, gr.12 university french. art and applied design. I would like to go into the English program at UWO or King's (finger's crossed!!!). I'll probably end up taking french and art as well.

But before I decide what to take NEXT year, I have to get through THIS year (which probably won't be too hard). Wish me luck!

Quote of the day: The difference between school and life? In school, you're taught a lesson and then given a test. In life, you're given a test that teaches you a lesson. - Tom Bodett

Sunday, 29 August 2010

Grade Twelve

High school will be resuming on September 7th. This is a very scary time, but also extremely exciting, because it's my last year. This will be the year I'm applying for scholarships, universities and sitting at home obsessing about my marks. However it is also the year I will be going to PROM and it will be the only year of high school with my fourteen-year-old brother Mojojojo, who is starting grade nine in almost a week, so I think he's more excited than I am.

I'm pretty excited about the year after too. In 2011 I'll have commencement (official graduation with awards, etc), I'll be starting at a new school and I'll be meeting new people. And, OF COURSE, I'll be continuing my education! Personally, I love learning. Learning about things is a lot of fun, as long as it's not about math.

So, since school will be starting in little over a week, I have bought all of my school supplies. I have two binders, four course dividers, paper, pens, pencils, highlighters, pencil crayons, my french mini dictionary, my student package (with my student fees) and a four year old backpack.

Quote of the day: Today the world changes so quickly that in growing up we take leave not just of youth but of the world we were young in. Fear and resentment of what is new is really a lament for the memories of our childhood. - Sir Peter Medawar

Friday, 20 August 2010

Quotes on a Friday

I don't have much to blog about. I'm busy with my part-time job and they're adding more shifts (well, I'm taking them :P) if people can't come in. That means less time for writing and even less time for reading and word searches. Yes, I have a book full of word searches that I do. It's a lot of fun and certainly makes the time go by faster if it's a slow day at work.

Anyway, I'd like to share MULTIPLE quotes of the day so that I cover the past days I missed this week.

Quote of the day: It is our attitude at the beginning of a difficult task which, more than anything else, will affect its successful outcome. - William James

(I feel like this quote is great for writers.)

Quote of the day: A certain amount of opposition is a great help to man. Kites rise against, not with, the wind. - John Neal

Quote of the day: It wasn't the reward that mattered or the recognition you might harvest. It was your depth of commitment, your quality of service, the product of your devotion -- these were the things that counted in a life. When you gave purely, the honour came in the giving, and that was honour enough. - Scott O'Grady

Quote of the day: A man who lives right, and is right, has more power in his silence than another has by his words. - Phillips Brooks

Monday, 16 August 2010

New York City (and other random thoughts)

Ok, so I must say that New York City was an amazing experience for me. I mean, it was absolutely the craziest city I've ever been to and I would never ever live there, but the history and the museums and the fashion and theatre is so wonderful it almost makes up for the lack of politeness and law-abiding people! Almost. I may be a bit stereotypical in this post, so I hope I don't offend anyone. A lot of people I met/saw there were nice. Some were stereotypical Americans. I find that the minority usually ruins it for everyone, and that's what happened there. The minority gave New York it's reputation.

I was staying on Manhattan and was generally pleased with the island. Times Square was very interesting. It was a bit too busy and too touristy for me, but that's ok. I liked uptown best because there was a lot less traffic and I found that's were all the good parts of New York were. The museums, Central Park, the lack of traffic! It was all wonderful!

On Tuesday (we flew to Manhattan on Monday) we saw Rock of Ages which was an incredible Broadway show that I would recommend to everyone (with a rating of 14A). The story was good and humorous, the characters were real and life-like, the scenes were outstandingly done! Congratulations to the whole cast and crew members!

On Wednesday we decided to go to the MoMA, which I highly advise despite the opinion of a tour guide. The art there was incredible and there was so much to see we could have stayed there all day, but we didn't. While going down the escalators my father decided he wanted to check something out on the second floor so, thinking we weren't stopping, I got onto the down escalator and was halfway down before my dad said "What are you doing?!" and I attempted to run up the down escalator. I also had a bag in my hand. I wiped out. I smashed my knee into the moving stairs and thought I had shattered my knee it hurt so much. I got down to the first floor and my mom helped me clean up. I bent my knee and was overjoyed that I had not ruined it and that it was merely bruised. It just meant a lot of limping until Friday, where I could walk without limping. It still hurts a bit, but it's not as bad as it sounds.

The flights there and back were incredible! We flew above the clouds so it looked like we were flying over the tundra!! I loved it. I didn't like take-off or landing because of the jolts and the whole "WE'RE GOING TO DIE!!!!" voice screaming in my head when we took off in London for the flight to Toronto. Flying to Toronto from Laguardia was amazing. The flight was around dusk so the sun was setting when we flew over the clouds. It still looked like the tundra, but it looked like the sun setting on the tundra. Amazing. One of the most beautiful things I have ever seen.

We got home midnight and Saturday I went to sleepover at my Grandma's with my brother, Mojojojo.

I have been very busy with my free time because while in New York I bought Wicked by Gregory Maguire!! I had been meaning to buy it for a while and I would love to see the musical, but that will have to wait. I had seen Confessions of an Ugly Stepsister, which is also written by Gregory Maguire, and thought it would be neat to read but I never bought it. Now I have decided to buy all of those reinvented fairytales written by him since Wicked is turning out to be such a good book!



Anyway, I've also decided to add a "Quote of the Day" since I love quotes and I'd love to share them.



Quote of the Day: If one could drown in the grass, thought Elphie, it might be the best way to die. - Wicked by Gregory Maguire

Friday, 6 August 2010

Where I'm From

Where I'm From

I am from pencils,
from Crayola and sidewalks.
I am from the apple trees in the yard.
(Small, determined, rough bark.)
I am from the Red Maple
the dandelion that always came back
no matter what.

I am from egg hunts and freckles,
from Mom and Dad and Brother.
I am from questioners
and hysterical laughter,
from Go Play! and Turn out your light!
I am from Bow your head in prayer
and cracked bibles.

I am from London and Scotland,
lemon meringue pies and brownies.
From the tractor rides of my uncle
to the barn cats,
and the skinned knees of my brother.

I am from traveling with my family
and visiting friends,
making moments that last forever.
Pictures in frames watching the years go by.
Mementos of times of Laughter and tears.

{The original poem is by George Ella Lyon.}

Thursday, 5 August 2010

Traveling

I'm leaving for New York on Monday morning. It will be my first time on a plane, so I'm very nervous. Action movies where the planes always crash don't help much; especially if a fictitious superhero saves the people on the plane before it explodes into a million pieces. So I've packed pretty much everything I need but I'm trying to figure out what to take in my carry-on. Obviously I'm bringing my laptop and it's cord, my iPod, and my book(s). However, I'm doing some research for a story idea (I have about two of these a day and they usually end up as dead ends) so I'm thinking of bringing a few other books. However, there is a weight restriction and we are leaving the safe-haven of Canada (*cough* it's not as safe as all the movies say. We can't leave our doors unlocked, sorry Iron Man. *cough*). I think it will be a great experience though. I love to travel. A few summers ago we just traveled all along the American east coast. It was wonderful and I had such a nice time! Who knew so many Quebecians had cottages in Maine? Who knew people could tell we had accents? (A lady who had been a Canadian told us we had accents. She had moved to the States after marrying.) And who knew you could buy wine/beer at a grocery store? Or marshmallows in a jar? That is just gross. I mean, strawberry flavoured marshmallows in a jar? And I thought Nutella was disgusting. But that is a very biased opinion. I'm sure lots of people like Nutella and marshmallows in a jar and find buying wine/beer at a grocery store very convenient. I enjoy traveling to the States a lot, and I enjoy traveling in Canada too. One day I would love to see the Canadian east coast, and maybe even the west coast too. I would love to see Great Britain and Europe. In travel & tourism, whenever we learned about a new country I would tell one of my friends that I would love to go there. At the end of the semester, she told me that I should just travel the world since I wanted to go to so many places. But really, I am excited about seeing New York! We're going to see a play (Rock of Ages) and we're going to go shopping and do some sight seeing. I can't believe that I'm leaving in only 4 days!!

Tuesday, 3 August 2010

Thinking of Back to School

It's crazy that already we're thinking of what's going to happen for back-to-school when it's a little over a month away. For us in Canada (or at least here in London) school doesn't start until September 7th. This means that our sales start a bit later than those in the States, but they still occur about halfway through August.

Another crazy thing about back-to-school is that once I get back, it's my last year there (unless something happens and I'm unable to finish it *knock on wood*). I have to think about scholarships (which ones can I apply for?), what school I want to attend (UWO or King's?), and what to wear to prom. I also need to think about what I want to do with life after I finish my post-secondary education because the courses I take will reflect my career choice.

I would really like to get my PhD in something to do with English literature (or something like that). Then I'd probably go to teacher's college and then apply to be a university prof somewhere. I think I'd like to teach, but I really don't want to teach elementary school (because I know just how difficult that is for teachers) and I DO NOT want to teach high school (because my mom teaches it and I know how stressful it can be). Therefore, I have come to the conclusion that I will probably teach university/college because I don't really have to interact with the students as much as teachers do in high school and elementary school.

Anyway, so as much as I love love LOVE the fact that I don't have to deal with high school and all its drama any more after this year, I'm also scared because I'm going to be forced to make decisions about my future. It's pretty daunting when you think about it. Some kids are taking a "victory lap" (fifth year) to figure out what they want to do, but I just want to get out of here! I don't want to stay in school any longer than I have to, considering how long it will take to get a PhD.

That's all folks.

Sunday, 1 August 2010

Rib Fest

On July 30 a few friends and I went downtown to the Rib Fest that was going on. There are always lots of festivals down at Victoria Park, such as Sun Fest, Home County Folk Fest, Blues Fest and Rib Fest. Usually at these events there are lots of tents set up for vendors. Sometimes the types of vendors depend on what the festival is. There are also lots and lots of places to buy food. At Rib Fest we have vendors coming all the way from Kentucky, and more! Those vendors specialize in selling ribs as well as chicken. My friends and I shared a full rack of ribs since there were only three of us. After we ate we kind of wandered around a bit. There are always all these people handing stuff out to you and trying to make you buy something. We walked past a gym's tent and this lady gave me a free weekend pass, which eventually made its way to the garbage. During our wanderings I decided I wanted a tattoo. Not a permanent one (because I'm terrified of needles), but a temporary one. I got an airbrushed tattoo of a dragon on the underside of my wrist. Then, when we were leaving, we got free Vitamin Water (more free handouts!). When I asked my dad if he liked my tattoo he said no. I asked him why and he said, "Because it's a tattoo," despite the fact that it only lasts a week. But I'm kind of worried about work. I know it's temporary, but I hope no one at work freaks out on me.

Thursday, 29 July 2010

Westernize Me!

Recently (for some strange reason) I've been really into the whole "late 19th century" Western/farming/small town thing. It's probably a side effect of reading the Little House series by Laura Ingalls Wilder. After I finished those books, I went on youtube and looked up the Doctor Quinn: Medicine Woman series. These episodes are also equally amazing and I love them. I've even added the official DQWM website to my Favourites because it has such good information about stuff from that time period (such as prices, salaries, etc). I'm in such an 1880's mood that I've even started to formulate a story in my mind that takes place in that time period. It probably won't get anywhere, but it certainly won't if I don't try. Anyway, that's pretty much all I wanted to say to get it off my mind :)

Monday, 26 July 2010

Ferraris

On friday, right after work, I was picked up and ushered away to the States in a brand spanking new Chevrolet Silverado, Cheyenne edition. I was happy because we were going to spend two nights in Auburn Hills, Michigan and attend the Councours d'Elegance. It is a very interesting car show and I definitely hope that all you readers go there some time in your life. The cars there are magnificent! They also have old motorcycles. They have cars over a hundred years old there that have been restored to look like they were built yesterday. Can you imagine how much that must have cost to restore a Ford Model T from 1910??? Anyway . . . There were multitudes of old cars there and I loved them all. My favourite part? The Ferraris. They are my all-time favourite cars. I saw 15 Ferraris that day, and not all of them were in the show. My favourite one? It's a tie between the Enzo Ferrari and a 1967 330 GTC I saw, as well as the Spyder. So I have decided to share my pictures with you:

1967 Ferrari 330 GTC
Ferrari Spyder

2003 Enzo Ferrari
21st Century Ferraris
Unknown Ferrari

Unknown Ferrari

Tuesday, 13 July 2010

Writing ADD

I think I have ADD. It's weird because I can focus, usually, on school work and reading, but if it comes to anything else I can get bored REALLY easily. For example, since I got my Poppa's old laptop (from around 1990 I think) I have had story idea after story idea. I start writing these stories, and then they either go nowehere or I get bored with it. Same thing is happening now. The story that I started with the whole outline thing I've gotten sidetracked with. I mean, I have an outline, a plot, everything, I just need to focus on the story to actually FINISH it.

Please, if any one has any ideas for helping me keep my focus, leave some comments. I don't think I'll be able to make a career of writing if I keep getting sidetracked and distracted with my writing.

Thursday, 8 July 2010

Ramblings of a Teenage Girl

Well, today at 11:20 I will be getting "prepped" (is that a word??) for surgery. Nothing big, just getting my wisdom teeth out. Surprisingly, I'm not nervous at all. Of course when I'm sitting in the waiting room waiting for my turn, that might change. But right now I'm calm, cool, and collected. I've actually had to go to Interface (the place I'm going for my surgery) before in grade 7 to get my four eye-teeth taken out. (When I was younger I had to get a whack full of teeth pulled because my mouth is too small! I've had 14 teeth pulled and these wisdom teeth will brinig the total up to 18!) So, assuming that the prep procedure is relatively similar to that of the last time I was there, it shouldn't be too bad. The last time the nurse had to wake me up and half dragged me across the hall to another room where I could sleep off the morphine. I slept there for an hour while my grandma waited for me to wake up!

I'm rather excited for all of the ice cream and fro yo and smoothies I'll be able to eat since I love all those foods, but right now I'm not a very happy camper. Why? might you ask. Is it because you're getting your teeth pulled? No, actually, it's not. As I have said above, I'm not nervous about that. What I am upset about is the fact that I'm probably not going to eat anything until supper tonight. I'm not allowed to eat anything until after the surgery and I mean, who is going to eat a McFlurry or drink a smoothie right after they've had their gums cut open and their teeth yanked out and has just woken up from being drugged up on morphine? So, that's really peeved me off.

On the plus side, my mom is letting me rent a game for Wii!! YAY!!! My brother, aka: Mojojojo, is bringing the Wii up from the basement so that I can play it while lying on the couch (he's such a good brother). I plan on renting Okami. It's a really interesting game based on multiple Japanese legends and stories. And the artwork in this game is BEAUTIFUL. I dunno, maybe it's because I'm an art junkie but I think the graphics an art in this game are wonderfully done. My brother also wants to rent Alice in Wonderland. He has yet to see it and I think he'll be pleasantly surprised.

Anyway, that's all folks!

Tuesday, 6 July 2010

Belated Canada Day

Happy Belated Canada Day!! Terribly sorry about this blog being so late. I just got back from camping yesterday up at Fisherman's Cove near Kincardine. We stayed in one of the cabins. We had been camping with my cousins. Tons of fun, bit of shopping, Scottish Parade on Saturday.

Anyway, since that's out of the way, I wanted to share the news that I have finally found a book that I have been looking for since last July. It's called Mollie Peer: or, The Underground Adventure of the Moosepath League by Van Reid. It's the sequel to Cordelia Underwood: or, The Marvelous Beginnings of the Moosepath League. It's a marvelous book that takes place in the state of Maine during the fall of 1896. It's very intriguing and I highly advise anyone and everyone to read it. All that I need now to complete this trilogy is Daniel Plainway: or, The Holiday Haunting of the Moosepath League. Other books about the Moosepath League (though not considered part of the trilogy) are Mrs. Roberto:or, The Widowy Worries of the Moosepath League and Fiddler's Green: or, A Marriage, a Ball, and the Singular Adventures of Sundry Moss. These are wonderful books and I hope to find Daniel Plainway and Mrs. Roberto as well as Fiddler's Green soon so that I can finish reading them all!!

Monday, 28 June 2010

Attacking Inanimate Objects

I have been noticing, recently, that my sleep is being disrupted by inanimate objects. My hand just seems to hit them on my bedside table and they seem to react.

The first time this happened I was dreaming of my brother. He was making a weird face and I went to push his face away. In the real world, his face was my fan. So I hit my fan and it didn't do anything, so I don't think it minded much. The second time this happened was sometime in the middle of the night, last night. I was half-awake and moved my hand in this big arc to pull my blankets closer to me, and hit my lamp. Now, I don't think the lamp liked that at all because it decided to fall on me, along with everything that sits on the lamp. After that I decided to just leave it until the morning. This meant that I had to sleep beside my lamp (which was lying on my pillow) and sometimes bump into it when I rolled over. Not a very good sleep! When I did wake up, I found everything that fell off my lamp (this includes a small bottle of moisturizer, hand sanitizer, deoderant, and a small container for odds and ends). Now I think I'm going to have to be a much more careful sleeper if I don't want the entire sidetable to jump me in the night.

Friday, 25 June 2010

Thoughts on Writing


Aah, exams are finally over. I can relax at last . . . or can I? There's work at the Gallery, weeding, planting, cleaning, friends to see, vacations to go on! Oh, and did I forget to mention writing? So, it won't be as relaxing as I'd like it to be. So what? Actually, I like a lot of alone time for my reading and writing. It helps to relax my mind and take it somewhere else. According to a few friends of mine, I shouldn't think. I should just read. I must agree with them. I'm at my happiest when I'm reading or writing, or vacationing. Or thinking about any of those three things.

When I first got serious about wanting to become an author, or have a career that has to do with English, my parents got me a book for my fifteenth birthday. We had just been travelling along the American East Coast. We had gone to Maine, Massachusetts, Vermont, etc. At Salem we went into a rather small interesting gift store. They had all kinds of books and such, especially since that is where Nathaniel Hawthorne's "House of the Seven Gables" is. In the store was a small book called You Know You're a Writer When . . . by Adair Lara. Some writers, or anyone really, might recognize themselves in this book. Here are a few that I find amusing:

1. "Writing is the only thing you do that doesn't make you feel as if you should be doing something else."

2. "You've switched to stretchier pants and looser sweaters to hide the effects of hours at the keyboard."

3. "You think you should do the talk shows first, sell the movie rights, and them if there's time, go back and write the book."

4. "You own more than five pairs of sweatpants."

5. "At work you practice turning off your computer screen quickly, for when someone glances over your shoulder to see what you're writing."

6. "You liked the book better than the movie."

This is only a taste of the many quirky sayings in the book. It's good for a laugh and it's interesting to see if you're one of the writers in the book. I know I am!

Tuesday, 22 June 2010

Exams and Some Comic Relief




Well, I have finished my English exam! I have fashion and dance on Thursday, then travel & tourism on Friday. So now that English is done, I can focus more on my writing. My other exams are extremely easy and require much less brain power.




Today I found out that I had a conflict with some of my courses for next year, literature to be exact, so I had to go get that fixed. I sat there for over an hour just waiting to get in. Finally, when I did, I decided to drop world issues, since that was what was causing the issues. I told my guidance counsellor that I wanted my seven courses instead of six, so I had to find another one to take. The ones that I could take were chem, law, business, applied design, and a math course. I do not want to take math or science unless I am forced to so those courses were out. I did not want to do law or business, so those were out too. The course that I ended up taking was applied design. Since I had to go fix the conflict, I found out what my schedule is for next year. My schedule is looking like this: Semester 1 - English, dance, double lunch, literature. Semester 2 - Applied design, creative writing, art, lunch, french.

Since this blog seems to me to be much more serious than I am, I have a story for some comic relief. On Sunday, we decided that we would all go biking (the family and I). We had our sunscreen and our hats and our running shoes and our bikes were out in the driveway. I was sitting on my bike and my mom was beside me on hers. She was attempting to sit on the seat, complaining about how high it was, despite the fact that it hadn't changed since the last time she rode her bike. All of a sudden, she loses her balance and falls into my bike, throwing me off balance. I sit back on my bike and I go ride out into the cul-de-sac. While I'm riding, I feel this weird thing from the back of my bike. I thought it was the chain, but it turns out it was my back wheel! When my mom had fallen on it, she bent my wheel! So I was conveniently left behind to study English.
And now, I must go work. I bid you all adieu.

Saturday, 19 June 2010

Being Nostalgic




During multiple times this year, I have had to use drop.io for projects when I was working on them at school. Today, as I was pulling up drop.io to get a project, I noticed I had old articles from last year. I looked them over and found "Sonnet", a sonnet from my ISP for last year's Enlgish class. We had to read a book and do a bunch of stuff for it, including writing a sonnet. The book I read was Peter Pan by James M. Barrie. It was in a rather large book I bought from Chapters, Seven of the Best: Favourite Stories from the Golden Age of Children's Literature. I decided you might want an example of my writing to prove that I am capable of writing. This sonnet I wrote at the end of grade ten, when I was fifteen.

Sonnet

Lady you cannot have the Wendy girl,
She is our mother in Neverland.
Our Wendy shines so she looks like a pearl,
Having her as a mother is so grand.

You will not see Wendy again lady,
She shan’t return for the window is barred.
This act that I have done is so shady,
The window in the nursery is hard.

Oh all right, I will open this window,
We don’t want any mothers anyway.
Back to our precious Neverland we go,
Your cold tears have made my decision sway.

I am barred from this joy forever more,
But I believe that this life is a bore.

Friday, 18 June 2010

Locker Clean Out

Today at school near the end of fifth period, our principle came on the PA system and told us to go clean out our lockers. I was very reluctant to do so since it officially meant the end of grade eleven. I share my locker with one of my very best friends and we had written stuff all over inside of the door and posted up sticky notes saying funny things (they're shaped like m's so one day we flipped one upside down and wrote down all the words we could think of that started with the letter w). We had erased a lot of the things the previous week, so it was pretty bare, but when we finally erased everything else, took off the mirror and white board and took out all of our textbooks and binders (except for my fashion textbook and some lined paper) it was sad. The locker look so empty and so bare compared to the cluttered, messy thing that had been grafitied all over with dry-erase markers. So, I realized that stories are not just books or papers on shelves or myths or legends passed down the generations. Stories are also all the little details that remind us of memories, whether they be good or bad. Anyway, for all those authors out there, there are probably a thousand more that haven't been noticed because all they've been doing is writing stuff down on their locker door.

Saturday, 12 June 2010

Car Shows and Restorations


I have just finished showering off all of the sunscreen of the day, only to get ready to go out again later. My dad took me to a British car show hosted by the British Sports Car Club of London, Canada. We drove there in his 1972 Triumph GT6, driving through about nine yellow lights. Anyway, when we got there we were the only car in our category. At this car show, they have categories and for each category, a car wins a prize. There is first, second, and third place prizes (I think!). Our category was the Triumph GT6/Spitfire category. The only difference between the two cars is that the GT6 is a hardtop and the Spitfire is a convertible. So we spent the morning looking at cars and talking to people about cars. My dad was telling me what cars are good for restoration and such (I would like to collect and restore cars once I become published) and how to choose those cars. Many cars were there for sale. The ones I liked were a 1957 Morgan for $22,000 and a 1972 MGB with chrome bumper for $8,000. I told my mom about the Morgan and she gave me 'the look'. She says I need to pay for university. I told her she could give me a loan. Anyway, at 2:00 all the ballots were handed in and we discovered that we won first place for our category! Again, the fact that we were the only car in our category had nothing to do with it. We would've won anyway. So now we have a shiny plaque to display at other car shows. Hurrah!!

Thursday, 10 June 2010

Revisions and Contractions

Today we were editing our rough drafts for our essays in English. I was really excited to see how my friend would edit it. I told her to be brutal. And she was. Although the majority of my revision includes taking out contractions, I really do feel excited when I'm revising my work or when I find out what I did wrong and how I can do better.

My friends and I in the back corner of our classroom were also discussing how we write. My one friend tends to write the way she speaks. Our teacher said that a lot of people put "would of" into their essays instead of "would have (or would've)". My friend turned to us, smiled and said "That's me. Sorry, but I write the way I speak." So that got us all thinking about how we write. I realized that I sound more formal in my writing than I do when I'm talking. Even in my thoughts I sound a bit formal because of all the fantasy books with all the big words I read. :P My friend who was editing my essay agreed with me.

I like reading other people's work because it gives me some perspective on how they see the world, how they think, how they justify their opinions, etc. I don't think my friend thought of that when she was editing my essay, but that's fine with me.

Tuesday, 8 June 2010

The course of human history is determined, not by what happens in the skies, but by what takes place in our hearts. - Sir Arthur Kent

I came up with an idea for a story yesterday and decided to put it to paper. As I was looking up "How to make a fantasy land" on Google, I got a wikiHow suggestion. I clicked it and found another article on wikiHow called "How to Create an Epic Fantasy Story". I discovered that there was a method to all this madness. Intrigued, I wanted to try it out. I have now created a map of my fantasy land and am in the process of creating my characters and story. If it turns out, I will approach a publisher and attempt to get it put on shelves. If it succeeds, I will let everyone know.

Monday, 7 June 2010

Good Books and Quotes (Oh how I love you so!!!)

Yesterday while I was at work (alooooone!) and had nothing to do, I opened a journal that we are selling. It's called The Reading Woman and it is filled with quotes from famous female authors and there are many famous paintings of women readings included as well.

I thought I should include a few of these quotes since I love them so much:

Once in a very rare year, there comes a new book, and I say, as I am reading, as my eyes eat words without a blink, as my heart and mind grab each other, This, I say, is The Best Book. I know before the first page is gone. I sense it building. And as the book finishes, I go as slow as I can. I don't want to leave the book's world. - Jill Robinson
Fiction reveals truths that reality obscures. - Jessamyn West
We read books to find out who we are. What other people, real or imaginary, do and think and feel . . . is an essential guide to our understanding of what we ourselves are and may become. - Ursula k. Le Guin

Well that's all you get. If you want to read more, you'll have to buy the journal!!
Anyway, so I would also like to recommend a few books. I have just recently gone book shopping (I know, so close to exams you're all probably thinking I'm incredibly crazy) and bought some amazing books! Wings by Aprilynne Pike, The Various by Steve Augarde, and The Gypsy Crown by Kate Forsyth are all good reads. I'm already looking forward to the sequel of Wings (Spells) and The Various (Celandine).

Tuesday, 26 January 2010

The Language of Love

French is supposed to be the language of love, so why don't I love it? My french exam is tomorrow and I do not enjoy studying the verb tenses when there is so much else to do! I have a story idea stuck in my head and I need to start writing until I get writer's block. This french is just ruining the creative process!

By the way, I do not suggest going into a math exam with Ode to Joy stuck in your head. It can be quite annoying when you're trying to figure out what domain means and how you can find it.

But while DR & MRS VANDERTRAMP is staring at me and I am staring at it, I can at least try to retain some information, since I will be taking french next year. If I take it four years in a row I will get an award, and if I get Staff Honours for four years I will get Suma Cum Laude, which is very good indeed. So while I think french is a pain right now, it's helping me get an award which will help in te university applications next year.

Monday, 25 January 2010

“Mathematics may be defined as the subject in which we never know what we are talking about, nor whether what we are saying is true.” -- Bertrand Russ

This week is exams. I have finished two of my exams and I am looking forward to finishing my other two. I had art and math today, meaning that I never have to step foot in a math classroom again! Well, at least for learning. Tomorrow is a day off for studying and so forth, while Wednesday and Thursday I have my french and biology exams, respectively. It grieves me greatly to leave my classmates in those classes, but c'est la vie. Friday is my spa day. However, when I come home Thursday I plan on going to the grocery store and making cupcakes. My friend is having a party Friday night so I plan on contributing :)

Anyway, for all you exam-stressers, relax. I meditated last night and woke up feeling refreshed, stress free and happy. I hope you take my advice and try to relieve your stress. It's a proven fact that stress causes 99% of our illnesses. If we all took the time to relax I'm sure we'd all be that much healthier. In the immortal words of MLIA: Time well spent? I think so.

Sunday, 17 January 2010

Exams, how droll

So the first semester has gone by without a blog from me (sorry!) and I plan on blogging somewhat frequently for this next semester.
I am trying very hard to keep writing my fiction, and once my story is done I will try very hard to get that fiction published. Until then, I'll probably be entering writing contests and trying to win prizes, the eye of a publisher, etc, etc.
However, before I can pass the courses of this semester, I must write my exams. Which is no fun at all. Math especially, since I'm not too fond of it. However, I do have a 74% in math, the highest I've ever gotten in highschool math, and this is the last math course I will have to take. Ever. And when I mean ever, I mean I will never step foot in a math class again unless circumstances don't allow that.
So, all in all, I hope to continue writing my story and pass grade eleven mixed math! (Which is basically university/college math for those who may be confused.)
Have a good week!!!