Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Movies... and lots of them!

In this post I will cover off some of my favourite movies! Let's start with Ramona and Beezus...

I just love this movie! Ramona is so cute, and Beezus is so pretty!

There are some great moments in this movie! I love it when Ramona tries out to be an actor for a commercial on TV and she knocks over the giant plastic sandwich. It's really funny! I also like the part when the family and some neighbors get into a big water fight (picture below).

Or the time when Ramona and Beezus overhear their parents talking about their Dad losing his job and Ramona decides it's up to her to save the house. She even tries to sell lemonade, much to Beezus's embarrassment.

Another funny thing that happens in this story, is that Ramona's aunt's old beau shows up and he tries to get her to fall in love with him again.

I love this picture of Ramona and Beezus...

Yup, Beezus has a boyfriend (Henry).

All in all, I highly recommend this movie. As for objectional content, Beezus and Henry kiss. And so do Ramona's aunt and the person she marries. In the area of bad language, an angry Ramona shouts "Butt out, Beezus!" a couple of times. And one time she gets so frustrated she warns her parents that she's about to say a really bad word. They tell her to go ahead if she must, and she blurts out, "Guts!" "Jerk," "doofus," "nutball" and "oh my gosh" also pop up.

Drugs and alcohol.


None that I remember.

Other bad elements would be just Ramona's occasional grumpy moments when she gets mad and does something to get back at the people who made her mad, like when she squeezes a whole tube of toothpaste into the sink.

Plugged In's review HERE.

Now let's move onto the movie, Ice Princess.

This is a great movie! Casey decides to pursue physics as her life career, and one of her teachers even recommends her for a Harvard physics scholarship! But then Casey begins to question her life goals after watching some figure skaters training for the Olympics. She decides that she wants to be a figure skater.

Unfortunately, her mom does not agree with her dreams. But Casey figures out a way to get to watch figure skating and do a "scholarship project" at the same time. She studies the aerodynamics of three aspiring figure skaters, using complex formulas and computer technology to break down their routines.

But being around them only makes her want it more, so she decides to begin figure skating lessons - behind her mother's back.

A couple weeks of skating brings her up to the level that the girls she studied for her project were at. But Tina Harwood, Casey's coach, doesn't want anything or anyone to get in her way of her plans to send her daughter, Jen, to the Olympics.

Casey faces betrayal, an angry mother, and a jealous coach. Will her figure skating dream every come true?

In this picture Casey anxiously awaits her skating mark.

Yup, Casey has a boyfriend. He's the Zamboni driver for the ice rink.

Yup, they kiss once... I think. I'm fairly sure they do. Other girls kiss their boyfriends too.

Bad language.


Two uses of “butt” and an exclamation of “oh my god.” They also say “That pretty much blew.”

Drugs or alcohol.

Casey goes to a party with Jen and teens drink from opaque plastic cups.

Plugged In's review HERE.

And now we move Cats and Dogs: The Revenge of Kitty Galore.

Yes, I realize that I'm reviewing this movie. I thought I would warn you off. I would not watch this movie again. The strange-looking cat above is... are you ready for this?... Kitty Galore! Not much to look at, is she? When she was younger, she fell into a vat of hair removal cream, and since then she's been hairless. Gone was her beautiful white fur and happy days. Her owners, not recognizing her without her hair, would not let her in the house.

And you know why she ended up in that hair removal cream? Because a dog chased her into it! Since then she's been unforgiving towards dogs - and out to get them. In fact, she has plans to get rid of all of them! She created a sound system called "The Call Of The Wild." When she sets if off, all the dogs go crazy and the owners send them to the pound. And her revenge will be sweet.

The day Kitty Galore sets off the Call Of The Wild is drawing near... cats and dogs must join together to stop the evil Kitty Galore.

I love how the dogs and cats, though they don't like each other, decide to work together in the end.

Okay, I'm not going to lie, there were some good parts in this movie. Like when a cat and dog think they're going to die, so they start sharing secrets. But all in all, I wouldn't watch this movie again.

I'm not going to go into depth with the objectional content, but if you want to read it, go HERE.

And last, but most certainly not least, Miss Potter.

Beatrix Potter, a woman who decided never to marry, wishes to get her children's books published.

She loves to write and tell stories, and everything, to her, is real. Sometimes, in the movie, she uses her imagination and her characters start to move around the page, and she tell them to "sit and stay still." It's really cute, like when a frog she draws falls into the water because a fish tugged on his line too hard. 

Then she meets another girl who has decided not to marry - and falls in love with the girl's brother.

Highly recommend

I really do have to go, or else I'd go into more detail. HERE's a link to Plugged In's review.

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Cupcakes

When I make cookies, I'm always so sad to put that oh-so-yummy cookie dough into the oven and bake it. What's the point? The cookie dough is so good on its own! That's why I was so happy to find this delicious recipe for cookie dough cupcakes!!! You are going to love them!

Here are my frozen cookie dough balls.

Here's my frozen cookie dough stuck into the cupcake batter. The next step is baking them.

Here are my cupcakes, fresh out of the oven. See the cookie dough peeking out of the top?

Iced and sprinkled with chocolate chips....

The finished product. Doesn't that cookie dough in the middle look scrumptious?

For the cookie dough:
2 sticks softened butter (one stick is 1/4 of a cup)
3/4 cup sugar
3/4 cup brown sugar
4 tbsp milk
1 tbsp vanilla
2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1/4 tsp. salt
1 cup mini chocolate chips

For the cupcakes:
3 sticks softened butter
1 1/2 cups light brown sugar, packed
4 large eggs
2 2/3 cups all purpose flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp. salt
1 cup milk
2 tsp. vanilla extract

For the frosting:
3 sticks softened butter
3/4 cup light brown sugar, packed
3 1/2 cups powdered sugar
1/2 tsp. salt
2 tbsp. milk
1 tsp. vanilla extract


To make the cookie dough, combine the butter and sugars in a mixing bowl and cream on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 2 mins. Beat in milk and vanilla until incorporated and smooth. Beat in the flour and salt until just combined. Stir in the chocolate chips. Using a 1.5 tbsp scoop, shape the dough into balls or tubes. Freeze on a parchment lined baking sheet overnight.

To make the cupcakes, preheat the oven to 350° F. Line two cupcake pans with paper liners (24 total). In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine the butter and brown sugar. Beat together on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Mix in the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition and scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed.

Combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a medium bowl. Stir together to blend. Add the dry ingredients to the mixer bowl on low speed, alternating with the milk, beginning and ending with the dry ingredients, mixing each addition just until incorporated. Blend in the vanilla.

Using a 3 tbsp scoop, fill the prepared cupcake liners 2/3 full with the cupcake batter. Place a frozen cookie dough ball on the top center of each cupcake.

Bake at 350 for 16-18 mins.

To make the frosting, combine the butter and brown sugar in a mixing bowl and cream on medium-high speed until light and fluffy. Beat in the powdered sugar until smooth. Beat in the salt, milk, and vanilla extract until smooth and combined.

Frost the cupcakes and sprinkle with mini chocolate chips!

Makes 24 cupcakes.

Saturday, May 28, 2011

How are you? I'm doing all right, thanks. :)

I had my best friend, Scezzle, over for a sleepover! It was lots of fun! We went to her youth group together, where we played capture the flag, and then we watched Tangled. Tangled is so awesome! I love the story line. If only I could come up with something that ingenious for one of my stories.

Rapunzel is the best!!!!! She is so pretty!

Don't you just LOVE how big her eyes are?

 I like everything about Rapunzel. Her beautiful, long hair, her big eyes, and her really sweet personality.

Don't you love how long her hair is? It must get annoying dragging it around with you all day, though.


 I really like the opening song to this movie (yes, it's a musical, but the songs are really good!).

This is Mother Gothel (or is it spelled Gothal?). She's pretty important to this story. Doesn't she look so nice? Cause she's not! In the movie she kidnaps Rapunzel, because Rapunzel has magic hair that will keep people young and heal their wounds. Mother Gothel (with the help of Rapunzel's hair) manages to stay young for hundreds of years.

That horse is so funny! He really adds to the movie! I love the way he acts like a dog.

Doesn't he look so cute? Kind of like my husky, actually.

And, or course, Flynn, the wanted thief. In the end he's a good guy, though. And he is basically the main character, so, you'll get used to him. He is sooo funny!

"They just can't get my nose right!"

This movie is so awesome! The basic story line is that Mother Gothel kidnaps Rapunzel because she has magic hair that keeps people young for as long as they want. She won't let Rapunzel leave the tower, EVER! Then Flynn finds where Rapunzel is hidden and takes Rapunzel outside into the real world. And so on. You'll just have to watch the movie to find out.

Click HERE for more detail on the story line and a Christian review of it.

Monday, May 23, 2011

I am so happy....so very happy....

Hello everyone! I have some VERY exciting news! I think that I mentioned before that I was in a violin competition. If I didn't, then now you know. Anyways, I won something for it!!! For the third year in a row!!! I am so happy!

Also, I took second in Scezzle's short story contest with my story, "White Death."

Sunday, May 22, 2011

I'm not too good at this whole title thing...

A couple posts ago I mentioned that my mom made me a dress from this pattern...

...well, here's a picture of me wearing it. And yes, I realize that it's a little blurry.

And another picture (I know that I look kind of odd in this picture, but I was tired of having my picture taken, so I leaned against the door)...

What do you peoples think of this for the opening to a story?...

I could see the class clown's eyes probing the room, searching for a new person to tease. I closed my eyes. I just knew that he would choose me. After all, my new adopted sister, Annice, was a year older than me, and she was in the same grade. If that wasn't teasing material, what was?

What do you think?

Who here heard that the end of the world was supposed to be yesterday? I forget the name of the person who said that, but he did say it.

Have a great day!

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Writing Tag

Isn't this picture so cute?

Sierra over @ Whispers of the Wind posted a Writer's Tag on her blog. First you write about yourself, and then a character from your story.

What is your name?
Book blogger

How old are you?
Does it really matter?

What do you like most about writing?
Making up characters! I can put anything into them, no one decides for me. Red hair, for instance. Just ask anyone, almost all my main characters always have red hair.

How many books are you writing or have written?
I am writing a lot of stories, but none of them are coming out right. Right now though, I have an idea that has been slowly turning into a story... I just need to write it down.

Now, do this quiz for one of your favorite characters you have come up with for a book.
Here's the main character to a book I'm just beginning to write...

To start with, her picture:



Hair color:

Eye Color:

5 feet, 5 inches. I'm not sure, is that an average height for a girl?

Very, very skinny. The exact weight? I'm not sure.
Biggest Pet Peeve:
Being ignored. She loves being the center of attention, and is always the most popular.

Favorite Color:
Bright colours. As I said, she loves to be noticed.

One adopted sibling, Annice. She's seventeen years-old, but is in the same grade as Mikah, as she did not have proper schooling until she moved in with Mikah's family.

Her mother, a hair-stylist, and her father, a clothing store manager. That's one reason that she's so popular, her mom always does her hair in the latest style and her dad makes sure her clothes are never out-dated.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Contest Entry

Scezzle is having a short story contest on her blog! Go check it out, her blog is soulclanterritory.blogspot.com

Here's my entry! It's a shortened form to another story I'm writing:

I pushed my paddle through the water; it created tiny ripples in its wake. Glancing back, I saw complete emptiness. Shore was nowhere in sight. Before me was a seemingly endless ocean. The heat of the day was coming to an end, and it was turning into a cool evening. For this I was grateful.

I had finally convinced my parents that I should be allowed to kayak on my own, that I was mature enough, and now, all because I did not heed my father’s warning to watch the tide, I was stuck in the middle of the ocean.

Suddenly I felt a strong presence; it gave me a calm feeling. Some people probably think that the strong presence could be God, but I’m not religious. The presence was something much bigger. You’re probably thinking, bigger than God? I’m thinking, yeah. Since I don’t believe there is a God, everything is bigger than God.

There was something in the water, swimming circles beneath my boat. I pulled in my paddle and hugged my knees, staying in this position for about ten minutes, but the thing wouldn’t leave. I risked a glance into the water. Well, it’s not a White Death, anyway. White Deaths were the only thing that scared my village. Wars, bombs, blood… none of these things were even worthy to be called problems. But the White Death… well, that was a different story. Killings by them were reported daily. They lurked the waters around my island, making it not even safe to fish. I’m scared of anything that’s bigger than me, and White Deaths are definitely bigger than me.

A sudden movement in the water caused my kayak to move sharply to the left. I looked down again. The thing was coming to the surface! I leaned back just in time, right before it broke through the surface of the water. An orca! Orcas are very rare where I live, since they were all killed off years ago. It leaned into my boat, causing water to seep in, and I reached out to touch it. The orca moved just out of my reach and began to swim away. When I did not follow, it glanced back and stared at me.

I’m completely lost. Maybe the orca knows the way back to my island. As I watched it move swiftly through the water, I decided it needed a name. Sheila. The name came to my mind instantly. I’ll call it Sheila. Sheila must have noticed my remaining motionless for so long, because she turned back and waited patiently for me to follow. I immediately took up my paddle again and began to trail her.

After many long hours, shore appeared in sight. I felt like laughing and crying. Sheila swam up to me, and I again reached out to touch her. This time she let me place my hand on her head. “Thank you,” I whispered. Then my magical moment was over and she dove into the water, vanishing from sight. Could that have been real?

When I reached the shore, I saw people wandering around with torches, calling my name.

“Violet!” I heard my older sister, Kitty, yell. “Vi?”

I ran up to her and gave her a big hug.

Kitty squealed. “Oh Vi! I was so worried! Let me alert everyone that you’re back.” And with that she scurried off.

It wasn’t long before a single blue light brightened the night sky. Everyone cheered. Some because they were happy I was back, others because they wanted to stop searching and go to bed. I was happy to come home. Though I had never really liked the house I lived in, after the scare, it seemed quite grand. Even though it only had four rooms.

My parents didn’t question me, they decided it could wait till morning, which I was glad of.

After I explained what had happened, my parents said they forgave me, and I had eaten breakfast, I returned to my regular, everyday routine. Feed the horses, milk the cows, clean the stalls, and so on. I worked so hard that my parents said I could have the rest of the day off, so I went to the beach in hope of spotting Sheila again, though I knew it was unlikely she would come near the shore. If she did and someone saw her, she would be hunted down until she was dead.

I waited and waited, until it was near dinner time and everyone had gone home to eat. It was then that my efforts were rewarded. Sheila appeared. She was about to swim up to me when Kitty approached.

“What’s that?” she shrieked.

She was about to run back to the house when I jumped up and grabbed her arm.

“No, Kitty! Please don’t.” I looked at her pleadingly.

“What is it?” she whimpered.

“Her name is Sheila,” I said. “And she saved my life yesterday.”

Kitty looked at me and then at Sheila, doubtfully. “Saved your life?”

And then everything came out. I told her about getting lost, about Sheila finding me, and how she led me home.

Kitty’s mouth was an “O.”

“Wow,” she said. “I guess I can’t tell Dad if she did all that. But how are you going to keep other people from finding her?”

“She can protect herself,” I answered, more for my benefit then Kitty’s.


“Where are you going?” I asked my Dad.

Dad seemed hesitant to tell me. “Well, there’s been a sighting of a killer whale, right near here, and I assembled a group of hunters to try and find it.” He paused. “It could bring in a lot of money.”

“Not Sheila!” I cried, grabbing his arm.

“Sheila? What are you talking about?” Dad looked at me like I was crazy.

“Um, Sheila. That’s what I named the orca.”

“You knew about it?” Dad turned and faced me.

“Yes!” I was near hysterics now. “Yes! And you had better not go near her!”

“I could make a lot of money off that killer whale! And you didn’t tell me?” Dad grabbed both my shoulders and shook me.

“There’s more to life than money!” I sobbed, getting very excited. “Please don’t! Please don’t kill Sheila!”

“Vi, I…”

“No Dad! You don’t understand! She saved my life!”

“That thing saved your life?”

“No, Dad, no! That thing didn’t save my life. Sheila did! Sheila’s not a thing. She’s a life! And how would you feel if you were hunted every second of your life?”


“Please don’t let them kill Sheila! If she hadn’t led me back to shore, I could still be out there right now! Please let her live!”

I could see Dad falter. “Well, for you, I guess I could. But only because the thing saved your life. Otherwise…” He rubbed his forehead. “I have a headache, but I suppose I must go stop the hunters.” As he walked off, I heard him mutter, “Why am I doing this? To save that thing? I could make loads of money of it.”

Thanks Dad. I whispered after him. I sat around, waiting for his return, but it was longer than I expected. When he did come in, his eyes held an intense look of hurt.

“I’m sorry, Violet, I was too late.”

“No!” I screamed. “Sheila saved my life! Could you not save hers in turn?”

“I am sorry.” Dad looked at me with a tired expression.

“No! No! You’re not sorry!” I was in hysteria. “You want the money! You don’t care about saving a life! You want to destroy life!”

“Vi, please…”

“I won’t stop! I won’t stop! Not until I see Sheila!” I clenched my fists at my sides. I jumped up and ran to the beach. Big mistake. The hunters were still there, cutting apart Sheila. Each time they cut a piece from her, I could feel something taken from me.

The orca that had saved my life, now gave her life.

I couldn’t do anything though. I wanted to throw those men to the White Deaths, but then I would likely lose my own life.

I dipped a toe into the water; it came out covered in blood. Suddenly I saw something white flash in the water. I wiped my eyes to get rid of all the tears that blurred my vision and looked again.

“White Death alarm!” I shrieked, jumping back from where I stood by the water’s edge.

Everyone began yelling and evacuating the beach. All the hunters stayed behind so they could kill it.

Killers! All you want is to destroy life! I wanted to yell, but decided that it would be best to not say that. That would only get them even more fired up.

One of the hunters raised their gun, but as he did, I saw the same sad eyes looking at me that had gazed at me the day I had been lost at sea.

“Wait!” I walked to the edge of the water and peered closer.

“Are you crazy?” The hunter grabbed my arm and jerked me to the side, again taking aim.

I glared at him and pushed him aside. “Sheila? Is it really you?”

The thing swam closer, and I realized it was a White Death. I felt ridiculous for thinking it was Sheila when she was dead, until I looked into its eyes. It gazed at me, swimming closer. I stepped into the water and inched towards it. The White Death continued to approach me, swimming slowly. I reached out a hand, it jerked back. But slowly, slowly, it came closer; I gazed at it, feeling a sense of calmness. “Hi there,” I said, reaching out my hand again. It swam closer and lightly brushed my leg. Everyone on the beach cheered. I smiled and waved at them.

And that is why, today, my village is at peace with White Deaths. They no longer seek to destroy them, and White Deaths are no longer afraid of us. Even my Dad was happy. Being the leader of the village, he seeks to earn money. And the White Deaths have become quite a tourist attraction. And you know what he said?

“This is all thanks to Sheila.”

It was the happiest moment of my life. “Sheila, Dad… you called her Sheila.”

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

The Cookie Fiasco: The Day Some Cookies Went Very, Very Wrong

I'd like to say I made this mistake when I was still young and inexperienced in the baking world, but I actually made it just this afternoon.

I haven't made cookies for a very long time, so you can imagine how happy I was when I was allowed to make Marshmallow Filled Chocolate Cookies. I eagerly began the baking process, mixing together all the ingredients. I then proceeded to line the sheet with parchment paper. All good, right? WRONG! I unknowingly used wax paper instead of parchment paper. And, of course, I didn't know that until after the cookies were done baking.

Okay, that's not a real sign, but it should be! Then it would stop poor bakers like me from using wax paper.

Caution to all you bakers out there: Never, ever, ever use wax paper. If the wax paper bakes into the cookies, it could prove rather fatal to your health.

Next, I found out, AFTER I had already begun the marshmallow filling, that I didn't have enough butter to finish. That would have been good to know BEFORE I started the recipe. And if that wasn't enough, the oven started smoking because I had used wax paper instead of parchment paper and it was melting.

And THEN I pulled the cookies out of the oven, turned it off, and found out too late that they weren't cooked enough. My mom and I went through them, pulling each one apart, to see which were cooked enough to be eaten. Fortunately, exactly one half was cooked enough, the other half I'd rather not talk about.

This picture is of all the unbaked cookies, broken in half.

ANYWAYS, if you would like the recipe, here it is:
Marshmallow Filled Chocolate Cookies
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 cup softened butter or margarine
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 cups milk
  • 4 cups flour
  • 2/3 cup unsweetened cocoa
  • 3 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  1. Preheat oven to 375 º
  2. Line cookie sheets with parchment paper or grease.
  3. In mixer bowl, beat together, margarine, sugar vanilla and eggs. Beat until light. Add milk.
  4. Add dry ingredients and mix well. This is a soft dough, more like a thick cake batter.
  5. Using a scoop or teaspoon, drop dough about 2 inches apart onto prepared cookie sheets.
  6. Bake at 375º for 7 - 9 minutes, baking until cookies are soft but spring back when touched.
  7. Wait a minute or two before removing from cookie sheets to a rack. Cool completely.
  8. Fill with marshmallow filling and store in tightly covered containers in your freezer.
Marshmallow Filling

  • 1 1/2 cups mini marshmallows
  • 6 Tablespoons milk, divided
  • 3 cups icing sugar
  • 1/3 cup softened butter or margarine
  • 1/3 cup shortening
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
  1. Place mini marshmallows and 3 tablespoons of milk in a microwave bowl or saucepan.
  2. Gently melt, over medium heat - stirring frequently.
  3. Just before marshmallows have melted completely, remove from heat and stir until all the lumps are gone. Set aside.
  4. In mixing bowl, beat together margarine, shortening and vanilla.
  5. Add icing sugar and 3 tablespoons milk, beating well.
  6. Add marshmallow mixture and continue to beat. You may need a bit more icing sugar or milk to make it of spreading consistency. It should be thick but still spreadable.
  7. Fill cookies.
  8. Enjoy!
Oh well, in the end it all worked out. And the cookies still tasted good!

Bon Appetit!

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Call me crazy...

Hello people!

And no, I don't know why I called my post that.

I'm writing a story about a girl who lives in a village that fears nothing, except the White Death (that's a fish). Anyways, that's the basic idea so far. I'll let you know how it goes. I have a laptop to type my stories out on now, so they go a lot faster. :)
Here's the basic idea of what the main character looks like:

My mom made me a dress from this pattern. Isn't it *such* a cute pattern? I might post pictures of it on me later, but I don't know if I want the whole world to see me. But I already have posted pictures of myself, so...

I'm taking an etiquette class, although I know that I'm already very polite. :) Click HERE to watch some etiquette videos that my teacher gave me!

Have a great (rest of the) day!

Monday, May 16, 2011

I had a piano competition today...

and I got two seconds! With the marks of 85 and 84. On Thursday the orchestra I'm in has some competitions, and on Friday I have some violin competitions. I was nervous, but not anymore.

Doesn't this food look mouth-watering? I wish I could say I took the pictures, but I didn't.