Saturday, November 28, 2015

Dum-de-de-dum-dum-dum!

No but really. It's been way too long.



I am so bad about blogging. It's terrible. I'm not even worthy to be called a blogger. Like... I hope one day to be a blogger.
So here I am, trying to blog. Have patience with me.

How was your Thanksgiving? Our was lovely. My house always gets loud and kind of crazy on the Holidays. We set up the dining room with China and special folded napkins and we made sure all the settings had these special name-tags, because that's always fun. And we had three-times as many settings as normal because it's Thanksgiving.,As a final touch we hung up a "Happy Thanksgiving!" sign above the table.And we made traditional turkey and stuffing, and we pulled out the drinks with special Apple Cider for the younger girls. Dinner was really when the fun began. We had one of those giant family dinners where everyone waves their hands and shouts to make themselves heard and there are like, five conversations going at once. And then someone goes "SHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!" and the whole table starts saying "SHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!" and everyone gets a little quieter for like, five seconds, and then up goes the volume again, and within minutes the table is just as loud as before, until another sister waves her hands and says "SHHHHHHHHH!!!!"

We'd give the Hogwarts dinner hall a run for its money.

After dinner, Mahri made a fabulous cake for desert, and we all had coffee and watched Holiday Inn. Just like we do every year. (If you haven't watched that, I highly recommend it. Bing Crosby sings the best version of White Christmas.) While we ate desert, we listened to our first Christmas song of the year; O, Holy Night By Nat King Cole. Then we watched the version Josh Groban did 2007. I love that version because the year it was performed, everyone was really pushing the whole "Happy Holidays" crap. All the songs on the radio were those fluffy, feel-good songs (Like Frost the Snowman) and those are fine usually, but when you hear nothing about Christ, or any of the other classic Christmas music, and everyone is trying to take God out of your CATHOLIC HOLIDAY, and make it politically correct, you start to hate those songs. Frosty was not a happy, jolly soul! He melted!! *angry Bella noises*  But then, just when you were fed up with everything and you wanted to smash the radio in half and hit the people who said "Happy Holidays" with those annoying smiles... THEN, Josh Groban stepped up and performed O, Holy Night. I remember we were Christmas shopping and it came on it Walmart, and we all just stopped for a minute. And I remember getting all thrilled, cause it was a shock to hear a song like that in a store. And Mom was like, "I think this is the first real Christmas song I've heard in public all year."

Then, when we checked out, we said "Merry Christmas," and the Checker smiled really big and said, "Merry Christmas!" back. It was a beautiful night. Josh Groban kind of saved Christmas that year.



How was your Thanksgiving? Do you have any nice traditions? What are they?

I want to blog again soon, but I don't want to load you with an information dump, so I think I will go for the night. Happy (late) Thanksgiving! Peace out y'all!!!


*swings around cape and leaps off stage.*




Bella

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

"I hold it up and show my buddies, like we ain't scared and our boots ain't muddy."






Today was Veterans Day.

I was very busy, but I knew I had to take a little time and dedicate a post to our brave soldiers who spend every day fighting to keep our country safe.

God Bless our troops.

I am fiercely protective of soldiers. It makes me mad when people talk about how awful war is, and they are disrespectful to soldiers because they 'kill' people. Our country is safe because of soldiers. Our country is still free because we have soldiers. We owe them everything we have. No matter what you say about America, even if our country has made mistakes, (and trust me, it has.) you can't discredit the soldier for laying down his life so we can sleep in peace at night. Our troops deserve respect and gratitude, not judgement and scorn. When people are rude to soldiers and go on and on about how we should have peace and not fight, I'm always like, " They're protecting the peace! And they're keeping you free! So shut up."

To all the men and women who have served are country and are still serving it today. Thank you. Thank you for all you doing and for keeping us safe and free.



God Bless our troops!



*swings around cape and leaps off stage*





Bella

Friday, November 6, 2015

[Dream-Cast!] AVM Blog Party -- Day Ten



I 'm glad I extended this to November 7th. LOL.

Day Ten: FREE DAY!!!

I thought I would do something fun today and recast one of my favorite musicals with the actors of today. This is like my "If it came back to Broadway..." cast.

I went with The Secret Garden, because that musical really needs to get back on Broadway. I would see it so fast! AND FREAKIN' FILM IT. (why is nothing ever filmed???)

Archibald Craven: James Barbour.

I edited this picture. The original is in the link.

James Barbour would be an excellent Archibald. He's an amazing actor/singer and he knows how to balance emotion and power with his voice. I think he would bring a nice depth to Archie while keeping that gentle sadness that the character needs. It would be fun to see him in the role and I know I wouldn't be disappointed.

Neville Craven: Tam Mutu.


Tam Mutu played Javert in 2013, and from what I saw he is an incredible singer and actor. He also is lighter than most Broadway performers right now. (There is a pattern here. It isn't just females. Almost everyone on Broadway is just a little... much.) I really like his voice and I think it would go well with James Barbour's. 

Lily Craven: Kelli O'hara



Kelli O'hara is one of the few females on Broadway who is always light and gentle when she sings. Most singers get a little too emotional or excited, and I think a lot of them focus too much on the power behind the note rather than just singing it and making it beautiful. (Not to say the other singers aren't talented. I just prefer the softer sound, like Sarah Brightman, Rebecca Luker or Haley Westenra.) I think Kelli would be a beautiful Lilly. I would love to hear her sing "How Could I Ever Know?" Especially if she sang it with James Barbour. I have a feelings their voices would really blend well together.


Dickon: Sawyer Nunes

Yes, this is George from Finding Neverland. He is adorable and I love him. He would make a fabulous Dickon. It just needs to happen, okay? (By the way, I want to watch Finding Neverland so bad! WHY DON'T I HAVE MONEY? WHY??) 

 Colin Craven: Aidan Gemme


This little boy is also from Finding Neverland. Can you tell I really like that musical? Aidan plays Peter. He is sweet and gentle and I think he is an amazing little actor. He makes me cry. (It's a very sad musical.)

Last but not least is the star of the show. Mary Lennox: Lara Wollington


This one was so hard for me! The rest weren't too bad, but I haven't heard many young singers lately. And who can you possibly compare with Daisy Eagan? She was the best Mary ever! However, I do like Lara Wollington, and as far as I know she is still on Broadway. She was Matilda in 2013. I heard one of the songs called "Quiet," She did a really good job.  Sometimes she gets too loud, but I think she would be a good Mary as long as she stayed light. She is adorable too.

I don't know who to cast for Martha. I wanted to do Sammantha Barks, but I think she is too old for the part now. Maybe she could pull of being sixteen... if so I would like her in that role. Otherwise I have no idea. Martha has more 'belt' to her character, which I don't mind, I mean the Original Martha had some belt in her voice but she had a softer kind of belt. My problem is that a lot of lower singers now are just kind of obnoxious. You can belt without being obnoxious! Look at Madam Defarge! She is great! That women knew how to belt, but she also knew not to do too much.

I have no idea who I would cast for Mrs. Medlock, or Rose either. But I cast the biggest people and I think that is all that really matters. In a few years this cast won't be a likely hood anymore, but if it were to come back in the next two years or so, I bet it would still work.


"Mary Lennox, for as long as you will have us, we are yours. 
And this is your home. And this, my dear, sweet child, is your garden!" 


Why isn't this on DVD or VHS somewhere?? Look at this cast! Just look at it!!


What musical would you like to "Dream-Cast" with the actors of today? Who are some of your favorite stars on Broadway right now? Have you heard any of the ones I talked about?

This is the end of my Musical Blog party. *sad face* I would like to thank anyone and everyone who took time to read my posts and participate in this party. I know it was in an awkward time. I will probably do another one sometime in the Spring... if y'all feel like it :) Hopefully more people will be able to join then. Again, I'm sorry if you missed out, and if you really want to you can still post away until the end of this month. It's not a big deal to me.

If you really like my blog parties and I can open other ones too - like one for the MCU, or one for TV shows, one for books... I will have to play around with the idea.


I am still renovating my blog. I think this is closer to what I want but I will play around with it a bit more. I like the musical notes behind it...



UNTIL NEXT TIME! Peace out y'all!



*swings around cape and leaps off sage*




Bella

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

[Book-to-Musical] AVM Blog Party -- Day Nine.


Wow, I am late. November guys. NOVEMBER. NaNo!! I was supposed to be done before this!

Day Nine: Favorite Book-to-Musical adaptation.

I have two.

First, Jane Eyre. They did such a good job with that musical! They didn't get fancy or try to make it better - they just told the story of Jane Eyre and that was that. Mr. Rochester was perfect,  I love the actor who played him in the OBC. He was fabulous.The best Rochester ever. Jane was exactly like Jane should be, quiet and solemn, but fiery underneath it all. Overall, the angle that the musical took with the characters and the story was just like how it was in the book, it made me very happy. They even used whole scenes and direct quotes, especially in the songs. I really liked that. The only thing they changed a little bit was the timeline, but I didn't mind because you can be more free with your time in a book, where as in a musical (or a movie for that matter) things have to cut out to keep the story going. I really liked the fact that they didn't change Mr. Rochester. They didn't try to make him sexy or handsome, or the 'tragic hero,' which so often happens to characters like him. They just told his story. They showed that he wasn't a bad man but he had done a lot of wrong and he had to redeem himself. I loved the bits from his point of view, like when Jane runs away and he flies into despair. You don't see that in the book, at least not in the same way, and it really showed what a broken man Mr. Rochester was.

In fact, the only thing I like better in the musical was some of the ending. In the book Mr. Rochester sends most of his friends away after he is blinded, and he puts Adele in school.  In the musical, his friends stay with him, and Mrs. Fairfax takes care of Adele. (at least, I think that is what happened. Anyway, Adele is there with him at the end, and it is adorable.) Beside this minor detail, the endings are practically the same, and I love both.

If you listen to this, listen to the OBC. It is de best.

My second favorite Book-to-Musical adaptation is A Tale of Two Cities.


A Tale of Two Cities did have more changes made to it than Jane Eyre, but I personally liked the changes. I think ATOTC did a really good job with balancing the story so it wasn't too extreme or overwhelming. I love the book, but I do think Charles Dickons got a little bit carried away. Everything about that book was a little bit too emotional, a little bit too much. The musical did a good job finding the core of what Dickons wanted to show and letting it shine out. My favorite example is Lucy, a character who had potential but ended up being kind of annoying. I only liked her in the book because she was nice to Sydney. The musical saw what Lucy could be if she was just filled out a little more, so they gave her some quirks and colored her in with some interest, and then she was complete. They did that with everything in the book, the characters, the setting, the villains... They knew what Dickons was going for, and they did a little coloring to help make that a reality. In the musical, I actually felt bad for Madamne Defarge. She was crazy and weird, but you did have a certain sympathy for her that doesn't really come through in the book. And Mr. Defarge was a very cool character. I don't care if he was in the wrong, he made an excellent antagonist. Kevin Early played him in the Original Cast and he was amazing. I love watching that guy perform. He's sooooo good. As for Charles ... Charles was Charles. I think if I had the whole Broadway Performance I could judge him better. In the PBS Concert he doesn't get much screen-time. That being said, what you see of him is good and I think the actor portrayed him pretty well. I really like him on the soundtrack, so there is that. I've always liked Charles, he just wasn't my favorite. I don't think he is a bad character. He might be a little flat, but he was likable, and he was a good guy. (I was surprised by how much I liked him in the book. He was a sweetheart.)

Then there is Carton. Let me just say, the musical did such a good job with Carton! He is that character I will always be picky with, because he has to be done a certain way. I'm a little afraid if ATOTC ever comes back to Broadway and they get a new cast, because James Barbour played him so perfectly. It is hard for me to see anyone else as Carton... and I've been trying to recast it!

I just really love how everyone, even Defarge, are all proper and polite,
 and then there is Carton. Slouching. With his boots on the furniture.

I just realized both these musicals have the same guy as the lead. Hehe.

ANYWAY........


Besides the story and characters, the music in both musicals is phenomenal. After The Phantom of the Opera, I probably listen to these two the most. Usually it's a toss-up between Jane Eyre and The Secret Garden.

What is your favorite book-to-musical adaptation? Do you have one where the changes are a good thing? A bad thing? Do you know either of the musicals I just talked about? What do you think of them?

PEACE OUT Y'ALL!



*swings around cape and leaps off stage*




Bella

Monday, November 2, 2015

What Happened on Halloween

I had a whole post written up, then I accidentally deleted it. It was sad. *bangs keyboard*

Starting over!!!!!

For our family Halloween isn't just about the monsters and candy. Halloween is actually a Holy Day in the Church, the Eve before All Souls Day, when we honor all the triumphant in heaven. Because of this, my family has always done more of a Catholic slant to the Holiday. When I was growing up I would pick my favorite martyr or saint and I would dress like him/her for Halloween. All of my sisters did the same thing, it was this cool tradition that started with the big kids and just went on down the line. We a long time we were known in the neighborhood as "The Saints." Now, the past few years we've had a little bit of a costume update. We've started to dress up in other things besides Saints, like fictional characters, for example.

I don't think Halloween should be as creepy or dark as it is today. but I honestly don't think there is anything wrong with little kids dressing up, even if their costume is some kind of monster, like ghost or a vampire or something. It's just a costume and it's fun for the kids to feel dangerous or scary. This doesn't apply to just kids, I think it applies to everyone who dresses up, even adults. The only time I don't like the whole 'monster' thing is when the costume get's too creepy. I hate it when there is too much blood or too much horror in the costume. I don't mind if you want to be scary or whatever. Just don't go way overboard and get really creepy and horrible. There is no need to make a costume so twisted that it's no longer fun.

So, do you wan to hear about our Halloween??

Here are the costumes.



 We were all sorts of things. We had a Steampunk Witch, a Daredevil, a Jack the Skeleton, a Twilight a tiger, a Batgirl, a Tintin, a Sort-Of-Indiana Jones, a Eowyn, a Merida, a Tintin, a Devil, oh and then there was me. Ten points to anyone who can guess who I was.

OOOOh pumpkins!!! (we had like, twelve of these suckers. They were fabulous. Tiny, Kat and I did one together that said GRIMM. It looked so good 8-D )



aren't they so fun??? 

This child who was a freakin' adorable tiger. 



 Some of me....unfortunately all the singles of me were taken before I put my hair up and had make-up on... but you get the idea.



 Do you know me yet?


How about now?


I'm not sure what that face is, but I think it's "I am so done with the world.



I like this picture, and it looks good in black and white so it had to be. I loved my costume so very much. I still have it out. I think I am going to keep it handy so I can wear it whenever I feel the need.

Can you guess yet???

Okay, I'll tell you. I was Sydney Carton. (Didn't see that coming, right?) And I got really into it. I even carried around a bottle and gave myself some scruff. And then when we were trick-or-treating or certain sister dared me to quote "It is a far, far, better thing I do than I have ever done..." at one of the houses. So I did. I stood there and I quoted Carton, and I was all brave.... AND THEY DIDN'T GET IT. I was so mad.

Beside this serious dissapointment, trick-or-treating was fun. We danced. We sang. We howled. We did random sections from musicals. We yelled happy Halloween. We talked and got loud because no one cared. We acted crazy and it was fun.

Halloween, Halloween!


After trick-or-treating we crashed out the house and watched Halloween movies/cartoons while munching on this delicious Carmel Corn. Kat makes the best Carmel Corn I have ever tasted. It is warm and sticky, and it has just as many peanuts as popcorn, and when it is cooking you can see the Carmel melting in and bubbling delightfully, and you can just tell it is going to be epic. There is nothing like that Carmel Corn. Nothing.

We watched things like The Halloween that Almost wasn't (Super corny, but fun) and Sleepy Hollow with Bing Crosby narrating, and Disney Halloween Cartoons that are short and goofy but well worth the watch.

*Speaking of Sleepy Hollow, The night before Halloween Tiny and I watched a version of that with Johnny Depp as Icabod. It was pretty good. It was kind of disturbing. Really disturbing actually. But I enjoyed it.

Sleepy Hollow

When Johnny Depp is normal he is kind of cute.... so Icabod was kind of cute, and he was awkward and sweet and I liked him a lot. I really appreciated the fact that he reacted like a normal person when it came to blood, creepy dark forests, weird bridges, and ghosts. He freaked out when he saw the Headless Horseman, just like any normal person would. But he pulled himself together and made himself be brave. He went into the horrible forest and he dug up graves and he chased down leads, and he stood up to the Horseman, even though he was obviously scared and nervous to do it.

"You don't understand!"


The only thing I would warn is that there is a lot of blood, it is pretty creepy, and there is one part that is kind of a scene. You don't see much cause it is so fast, and at first you don't realize what it is, then the lady cuts her hand, and you realize the guy on top of her isn't dead... and it's over. It's very awkward. 

I just realized how long this blog post is. I should go now. I have NaNo to do. But I will blog again tomorrow. MUSICALS!

How was your Halloween??? Did you have an epic costume? Do you have any traditions?

PEACE OUT Y'ALL!



*swings around cape and leaps off stage*



Bella

Sunday, November 1, 2015

In case you were wondering.

I am still here!


I haven't forgotten my blog party. Halloween Happened. I had a lot of stuff I wanted to talk about, and I didn't want to rush the post, but I promise you will hear all about my costume and how fabulous it was, and I PROMISE I will finish my blog party. The last two days will probably be November Third and Fourth.

Peace out y'all!!!



*swings around cape and leaps off stage*




Bella

Pile of good things

Pile of good things