Saturday, April 19, 2014

"Oh, Look At That... I've Been Impaled."

Oh, no... not impaled. Er... awarded. That's what I meant. Awarded. Whew! Too much Frozen! But who can help loving Olaf? *grins* I tend to collect a couple of these award things and then post them all at once. So... here we go!

First off... my friend Arwen has a private blog (very Lord-of-the-Rings-y, so I muchly enjoy reading it), and she nominated me for the Beautiful Blogger Award! Thank you, Arwen! :)

Rules (None given with the award, yet I'm obnoxiously putting rules in for the purpose of this post)
1. Thank the blogger who awarded you
2. Answer the ten questions he/she asked
3. Nominate ten bloggers to receive the award
4. Ask them ten questions
5. And so forth.... :)

Arwen's Questions
1.  How long have you been playing your instrument of choice?
I began playing the piano when I was about six or seven, and I've been happily playing ever since. I'm currently not in lessons, but I hope to be this fall. I also play the flute some, and I got my first flute in 2006.

2.  Best flavor of ice cream that pops into your head right off the bat?
CHOCOLATE! But.... I can't have it. Allergies, you know. Plain chocolate ice cream is THE BEST EVAH, and if I'm in an adventurous mood, I'll snitch a bite when we have it in the house. Which is rare. Which is probably best considering I'm allergic to it. :P

3.  What are your current favorite book, movie, and singer/band?
Book: I just beta-read a medieval King Arthur-ish story for a friend and LOVED it (yes, friend, you know who you are)! But I s'pose that's not acceptable, since it's not published yet, so let's say Little Dorrit. Awesome Dickens, and I just finished reading it this week.

Movie: Probably Frozen. Or Desolation of Smaug. And they may or may not be the last two things I've watched. :)

Smaug was amazing. 'Nuff said.

Singer/Band: I really don't follow many singers and bands, but I do enjoy listening to Ben Everson. His Embrace the Cross album is one that my family plays almost every day... provided we can swipe the CD from my brother's sticky fingers.

4.  Do you prefer listening to instrumental music or music with vocals?
Usually, vocals so I can sing along. If I'm writing, it has to be instrumental, otherwise I'm WAY too distracted.

5.  What is your opinion on dogs?
I love dogs. They're man's best friend. Loyal, friendly, furry, wonderful.

6.  What is one thing about you that few people know (that you're comfortable posting about)?
I immensely dislike Idina Menzel's voice. I'm sorry to say it, but that girl cannot sing. Not properly, anyway. You can love her if you want to, but leave me in my lonely corner and prefer singers who don't screech. Disney's Frozen was an excellent film, and I loved it, but I can't stand to listen to Elsa's Let it Go.

The animation in this song, however, is fantastic!

7.  What is a food combination that you love but most people would find strange if you told them about it (i.e. chips with peanut butter sandwiches, feta cheese, peanuts and Italian salad dressing on your fish, etc.)?
Top of the Mountain dinners. What? You don't know what that is? Boy, are you missing out! Take your leftovers from Thanksgiving (mashed potatoes, turkey and gravy) to create a bed on your plate and then layer on whatever toppings you please! I prefer loading mine with homemade stuffing, raisins, crushed pineapple, diced apples, shredded coconut, celery, Chow Mein noodles, and cheese. It's delicious!

8.  Do you care a lot about your wardrobe, or are you more of a clothes-are-there-to-clothe-me-and-that's-all type of person?
The latter. Clothes are clothes. As long as they're modest and comfortable and glorifying to God, that's all I care about.

9.  How many times have you eaten out in the past month and where?
Once. Yeah, I know, but I have food allergies, remember? My mom took my brother and I out to collect maple sap from a friend, and we stopped at McDonalds on the way. Even with my soy allergy, I can eat plain burger patties and french fries! And that's rawther exciting for someone who is basically banned from restaurants.

10.  Favorite genre to read about/watch?
Adventure. Fantasy. Comedy. That kind of stuff. 

And... Hamlette of Edge of the Precipice gave me the Liebster Award! Thank you very much, Hamlette!

The Rules:
*Thank the blogger who nominated you and link back to their blog (done above).
*Display the award somewhere on your blog.
*List 11 facts about yourself.
*Answer 11 questions chosen by the blogger who nominated you.
*Come up with 11 new questions to ask your nominees.
*Nominate 5-11 blogs that you think deserve the award and who have less than 1,000 followers. You may nominate blogs that have already received the award, but you cannot re-nominate the blog that nominated you. Go to their blog and inform them that they've been nominated. 

My 11 Facts
1. My sisters and I have a Frozen calendar hanging in our bedroom. Yes, we're 20, 18, 11, and 4, and we all got it for Christmas. 
2. I like wearing my hair in a side braid - simple, fast, and controlled.
3. I recently realized that I have about 50 skirts... yeah...
4. I love climbing pine trees.
5. Instead of eating my corn on the cob horizontally row by row, I eat it vertically, going round and round on the cob.
6. I've never read any of the Bronte sisters' books.
7. I immensely dislike cap sleeves on my shirts.
8. I've read the new Millie books (the ones adapted by Kersten Hamilton with purple covers) so many times I can quote most of the books aloud. And I do.
9. I love tapioca pudding.
10. I am not a cat person. 
11. I have Peter Pan syndrome -- I don't want to grow up. Awkward, considering I'm 20.

Hamlette's Questions
1.  Who is your favorite poet, and why?
Alfred, Lord Tennyson or Edward Lear. They're both so quotable, that's why, and because I thought Dr. Seuss wouldn't quite fit this question. ;)

~Half a league, half a league, half a league onward. Into the jaws of death rode the six hundred.
"Charge of the Light Brigade"
~They went to sea in a sieve, they did. In a sieve they went to sea.
"The Jubliees"

2.  What movie character would you recast if you could?
My family just watched The Desolation of Smaug the other night (IT WAS AMAZING!! But wow -- what a cliffhanger!!), but I formed a very great dislike of how Peter Jackson portrayed Beorn, the skinchanger. While the bear side of him was phenomenally cool, the "human" side was not. Whatever happened to Gandalf's one-by-two-sometimes-three entrance parties? That's my favorite part in the book!  And I'm sorry, but Mikael Persbrandt did not look anything like what I imagined Beorn to look. So, although I loved DoS, I think Beorn was wrong.

Is it just me, or does he look more bush than bear?

3.  Do you think mice are nice?
I'm not overly fond of them on the whole, but I'm not scared of them. I've been around mice long enough to know what to do to catch one. And I don't shriek while I'm doing it.

4.  What "universally beloved" fictional character do you not care much for?
Wow, Hamlette. Gettin' deep with the questions, aren't we? I like this... it's making me think. Honestly, Thorin from The Hobbit. I get so annoyed with him in the book, and although Richard Armitage is definitely nailing the performance in the movie trilogy, I still don't like Thorin. He's one selfish dwarf, and that's that. For all those who know the story and THE SPOILER... I'm not sorry it's going to happen. Actually, I'm eager to see how PJ is going to do it. I know that sounds harsh, but that's me.

5.  Do you prefer sci-fi or fantasy?
Fantasy. I'm just beginning to get into some sci-fi stuff (i.e. Star Wars), but it's not a great love. Fantasy is epic in every sense of the word.

6.  Have you ever been in a police car?

7.  Are there any movies or books you thought you'd hate, and discovered you liked instead?
Star Wars. I've never considered myself a fan of science fiction, but I've watched 4 out of the 6 episodes and actually enjoyed them. 

8.  What's the oldest book you've ever read?
The Bible. It's amazing to think that God's Word was written 2,000 years ago, and yet it has been so carefully preserved and is just as powerful today as it was when it was written.

9.  What's the oldest movie you've ever seen?
This one I had to do a bit of research for. I've never seen any silent films, but I've seen plenty of black and white ones. Bright Eyes with Shirley Temple, made in 1934, I believe is the oldest one.

10.  If you could live in any fictional house/mansion/dwelling, where would you like to live?
Hmm... either Professor Kirke's country house with all the passageways and the ten minutes' walk down to the dining room and the wardrobes leading to faraway places OR the hole in the ground in which lived a hobbit, not a nasty sort of hole with worms and spiders and oozy smells, but a hole full of the comforts of home. 

11.  How many books have you read so far in 2014?
20 so far. But still going strong! :)

And then Miss Jane of Classic Ramblings also gave me the Liebster Award! Thanks, Jane! :)

Now, for some reason I've seen a lot of different Liebster awards floating around the blogosphere, and if they're all different Liebster awards, or if they're the same, I'm not sure. But they all do have pretty buttons! :)

~Thank and link back the person who nominated you 
~List eleven facts about yourself 
~Answer the eleven questions asked by the blogger who nominated you 
~Nominate 9 bloggers who have fewer than 200 followers (you can't nominate the blogger who nominated you)
~Ask them eleven questions
~Let them know of their nomination!

My 11 Facts (again!)
1. I would love to get a penny whistle.
2. I will often sing tenor in church/family groups/etc, even though I'm a natural alto.
3. I haven't read Les Miserables... yet.
4. I can imitate Snow White's singing voice. 
5. And yes, I annoy my siblings with it.
6. It is my dream to rewrite all the fairy tales without magic.
7. I've already dove into both Cinderella and The Twelve Dancing Princesses.
8. My retellings are (if you don't know) Secret of the Hazel Tree and The Twelfth Kingdom.
9. I'm planning on Little Red Riding Hood and Sleeping Beauty to be my next retellings.
10. And I'm raw-ther excited about them.
11. Yes, I'm kinda avoiding the whole "eleven facts" thing with statements. But, in my defense, I already posted eleven random facts earlier in this post!

Jane's Questions
1. What movie genre is your favorite?
Adventure, fantasy, comedy. Didn't I answer this already?

2. Do you like musicals? If so, list a few favorites.
YES!!! I ADORE MUSICALS! I wish my life was one... well, it pretty much is, considering there's ALWAYS music in our house. Hmm... some favorites. Thank you, Jane, for not saying one favorite! Cinderella, Fiddler on the Roof, Beauty and the Beast, Singin' in the Rain, Peter Pan, The Little Mermaid, The Sound of Music, Mary Poppins, Les Mis, Newsies... and the list goes on and on. Some of these musicals contain themes/costumes/songs/language that aren't appropriate, so please listen to/watch them with discernment.

How can you *not* love this??

3. Favorite modern author?
How modern is modern? I'm assuming still alive, still writing modern. Chuck Black (author of the Kingdom Series and the Knights of Arrethtrae) is a favorite, as is Donita K. Paul (DragonKeeper Chronicles). It's hard to pick out really modern authors, because my preferences usually go towards more classic books.

4. Do you prefer reading a paperback or hardback book?
It depends on the book and my mood. I like both. Usually, though, I prefer my classics in hardback.

5. Favorite time period in history?
Favorite to write about? Medieval. Favorite to learn about? Colonial/Revolutionary War/Civil War. Favorite to actually live in? Probably late 1800s-early 1900s in America.

6. Least favorite food?
Tortellini soup. I'm sorry, but I can't stomach that.

7. Do you have any historical role models? If so, who and why?
I really admire Fanny Crosby. Although she was blind, she led such a life for the Lord. People expected her to complain and sulk about her condition, yet she didn't. She accepted it as God's will for her life, and made the most of it. And look at the testimony she left behind! Her hymns are some of my particular favorites!

8. Fictional character who's most like you?
Probably Jo March. I don't haver her temper, but I am obnoxious, quirky, writerly, and all that like her.

9. Do you ever take personality quizzes? If so, list a few of your favorites?
From time to time. I don't have a favorite quiz, per say, but I have had some interesting results. This morning I took quizzes relating to what character I was in LOTR, Frozen, and The Princess Bride, and I came out as Eowyn, Sven, and Vizinni. You can figure that one out.

10. Favorite book when you were little?
The Owl and the Pussycat. Yup. Edward Lear.

11. Thoughts on Kindles?
I like them, and if I had money, I'd buy one and use it (especially since I've got a ton of the classics on my kindle app on my computer). But on the whole, I like real books better. They smell nice. :)

Now to award eleven people... and ask eleven questions.

Let's see... picking out people to award is always a difficult task, because OF COURSE I want to pass it on to everyone! Hmm... how 'bout I look through my comments and pull eleven names? Excluding, of course, the lovely girls who gave me the awards...

Jack of However Improbable
Elizabeth of The Country Handmaiden
Christina of Idlewild
Lauriloth of Musings of an Elf
Michaela of Stepping Toward the Son
Melody of The Splendor Falls on Castle Walls
Hayden of Story Girl
Sarah of Sarah'Sword
The Keller Girls of Life With The Keller Girls
Khloe Grace of All Things Good
Eowyn of inklings press

My Questions
1. Favorite superhero (any will do)?
2. What color socks are you wearing right now?
3. If I were to visit you for the afternoon, what would you plan on doing?
4. Best pizza topping?
5. Can you introduce us to your family in less than three sentences?
6. If you could be proficient (as Lady Catherine says) in any instrument, what would it be?
7. Five favorite Disney songs off the top your head. Go!
8. Your opinion of maple syrup, please?
9. What's your favorite soup?
10. Which fictional hero/heroine would you want as a sibling?
11. Peter Pan or Alice in Wonderland?

And as to which award you get -- if your birthday is anywhere from January to June, you got the Beautiful Blogger Award. If, however, the date proves to fall between July and December, you got the Liebster Award. Negotiations may be made to receive the opposite award if your birthday popped up in the wrong group. *winks* 

And for anyone I didn't award, but would like to answer the questions in a comment -- please do! I'd love to read your answers!

Or... if I awarded you and you just want to answer the questions in a comment... that's fine as well. I'm not too terribly picky. I mostly picked your names out because I wanted to see you answer the questions. Don't we all do that?

God bless!

Friday, April 18, 2014

The Completely Random and Useless Tag

Jessa Bri (my sister, if you didn't know that already) began a tag that looks absobloominglutely fun, and I couldn't resist so I'm doing it. It's called The Completely Random and Useless Tag. *grins* I encourage you all to pop over to her dee-lightful blog and do it, too!

1. Copy this tag and answer all of the questions.
2. Mention me, Jessa Bri, and link back to my blog.
3. Comment on this post and leave a link to your post with the tag.
4. Feel free to tag people... or don't tag anyone at all!

Favorite color?

What book are you currently reading?
Jules Verne's Five Weeks in a Balloon. I'm liking it, and this is only my second unabridged Verne! The first was Around the World in Eighty Days, which, coincidentally, is the same book. Two Verne in one copy. Pretty nifty, eh?

Popcorn or pickles?
Ugh, Jessa, you would say that.... if they're dill pickles, I can't choose. Sweet... *shudders* POPCORN ALL THE WAY!

What is your favorite way to eat raisins?
I was going to say "dried" but apparently someone beat me to that. *looks at Jessa* Humiliated grapes, really. I like 'em in a trail mix with craisins and peanuts and cashews, or they're also really good in warm, homemade pumpkin bread. Ahhhh.... :)

Do you like to wear socks to bed?
In the winter, yes, because I can't sleep with cold feet. Yes, I know. I'm weird.

Pick the main character from the last book your read-- he/she is now your best friend. Who is it, which book is he/she from, and what is one similar thing- something odd or unusual- about the both of you that makes you best friends?
Agatha Christie's Death on the Nile. I'm best friends with Hercule Poirot? Wow... I'd guess I'd have to be his Watson, then... but perhaps in a more feminine, rambunctious way. What's similar between us? The love of a good mystery.

Spring, summer, autumn, or winter?

Favorite musical (any production or movie counts)?
Either Cinderella (2013 Broadway) or Fiddler on the Roof (1971 film) or... yeah, I should probably stop there. This could end up being a pretty looooong list.

Best song EVAH!

Lefty or righty?

Sausage or bacon?
*glares at Jessa* Not fair.

Would you rather spend the afternoon on Pinterest or reading a good book?
Uhh... no brainer there! The book wins hands down!

White socks or "fun" socks?
White. I'm not a fun socks person. Not really, anyway. Socks are for practical, not decorative, purposes.

Coffee or tea?
Root beer! Pepsi! Lemonade! Apple cider!

Are you shy or outgoing?
Mostly shy, but I can force myself to be outgoing.

What is the goofiest thing you do with your friends/cousins/siblings (whichever it may be)?
Too many goofy things. To list them all would take up considerable space on this blog. One of the goofiest is reenacting songs from movies and musicals. That can get hilarious. Or playing Apples to Apples all the wrong ways. Yes, that's hilarious, too.

Would you rather read a good book; bake up a storm (a good storm) in the kitchen; ride your horse across the fields; spend hours updating your wardrobe; watch your favorite movie/show all day; or simply sit in a tree daydreaming?
Read a good book. How is there a choice? Although, the tree sounds lovely.

Yes, indeed. Snoopy knows. :)

What do you like to eat for breakfast?
A cinnamon raisin bagel with butter. Plain, yummy, and simple.

Would you rather be behind or in front of a camera?
Honestly... in front. I'm not a whiz with taking pictures, nor do I deem myself photogenic, but I'd rather be in front. Or to the side, so you only get half of me in the actual picture.

Foot size?
You should have asked my last name, best friend's name, favorite food, and eye color first, because everyone knows that foot size doesn't matter. ;) Actually, I'm not sure what size my feet are. Somewhere around 9 1/2... I think. I usually don't look at sizes. I just wear whatever fits.

Truthfully, did you enjoy this tag?
Yes, yes, of course, I did.

God bless!

Saturday, April 12, 2014

Post All The Snippets!

Okay, well... maybe not. But I am going to take advantage of this opportunity and link up with Katie's Snippets of Story. I unofficially did a NaNo challenge of sorts during the month of March while working on Secret of the Hazel Tree, and got 45,000 words as a result, so I have lots of snippets to choose from!

The second dance quickly turned into a nightmare for both Julien and his partner as it was one of Queen Louise's new selections, a lively song with a piping flute descant. The pattern one's feet should follow was complicated, indeed, and no matter how he studied the other dancers' movements, he could not make any sense of it.

At length, after running consecutively into no less than six couples, Julien gave up. “Perhaps we should sit this one out?”

The girl's cheeks had turned a bright pink with the effort she had put into the dance, yet it was clear that the song was getting the better of her. With what Julien was certain was a relieved nod, she surrendered the steps to the dust and allowed him to lead her off the floor.


With a sniff, the housekeeper drew herself up. “Well, iffen yer not goin', then I will. I could pass as one 'o 'em rich ladies. I know I got the 'aughty part done ta perfection. I'll jest march up ta the prince an' order 'im ta take me ta the baron. An' jest ya wait 'til ya 'ear what I'm goin' ta do ta that uncle 'o yers... why are ya laughing?”

The mental image was too hilarious for Celesta to hold it in anymore. She could believe that Ahna would do exactly as she said she would, but she didn't think Prince Julien would appreciate a housekeeper crashing the event of the century. The duchess would never approve.


Celesta knocked on the door as Ahna grumbled, “R'mind me next time, I 'ate walkin'.”

“It's not that far.”

“It's 'azardous fer a woman o' my age ta weary 'erself with cross-kingdom treks!”


Denstan sat with his back to the visitors, intently working on something on the table before him, while Rerik hung on his father's knee, completely enamored. Ahna swaggered up to him and dropped a hand on his shoulder.

“Well, well, well, if it ain't our Kadsa's young man! Still as reckless an' wild as ev'r, I 'magine.”

“Father's not reckless!” Taimee insisted while Rerik only gaped at the strange woman who dared to thump his father's collarbone.


He was battling a grin, and losing miserably. “I am slighted to think you deem me unfit to learn your name. Or even just one of your names. Come, you must have pet names and the like,” he said, dropping his hands to his sides in a playful exaggeration. “Won't you tell me one of those? I must call you something besides that girl or young lady!”

Celesta licked her lips, trying to calm her racing heart. “Pet names?” Surely that is not dangerous. I might be able to oblige him in that, at least. Something that won't link me to the Hill.

“What does your family call you?”

“My family?”

“Yes, your family. Surely they have something they call you, even if it may not be your real name. You can share that with me, can't you? What do they call you?”

The question hit hard, a lot harder than he may have meant it to, but the hit was there all the same. He could never know what it was exactly that he was asking. She took a deep breath and gave the answer.

“Cinderella. My family calls me Cinderella.”


Will you not tell me what is going on?” The queen planted her hands on her hips firmly. “You have been gone hours from a ball thrown in your honor, and now after I abandon it in the hopes of finding you and bringing you back, you reappear with your shirt torn, your face pale, and blood staining your clothes.”

“I was showing Cinderella the library when someone attacked me.”

He wasn't sure what she thought more important: the mention of the girl or the attack. Fortunately, she chose the girl. “You were with who?”


The prince stared at the brothers. Jorah was taller by appearance the elder of the two, yet the features shared between the two almost made them twins. He could not think why he didn't notice it before. What he did notice was that neither one looked anything like Ilmiltora, for they boasted sandy curls where hers were dark, ruddy countenances where hers was delicate, and pleasant faces where hers was decidedly not. How such different people could all be in one family was beyond Julien's reckoning. He burned with curiosity about them, but wasn't sure how to phrase his questions with a pretend innocence.

“If you are the nephews of Sir Perradd, then...” he coughed, “Ilmiltora must be your sister.” There. That wasn't too shocking, was it?

Jorah's eyebrows went up. “I'm afraid we do not have that pleasure, Your Highness.”

The other, Jacynthe, laughed and spoke for the first time. “You mean we're lucky to claim her only as a distant cousin and not a blood sister.” 

Again, all snippets from Secret of the Hazel Tree. And yes, it's all mine. Please don't steal anything. *grins*

God bless!

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Concerning Book Reviews On Lianne Taimenlore

To be honest... there really aren't any. Book reviews, that is. And why not? you wonder. Well... simple.

It's because I post all my book reviews over at KiriBeth

In case you didn't know, my sisters (Beth Grace and Jessa Bri) and I have a movie/book/music review blog. We each have our own little corner (admit it -- you just sang that last line *grins*), and mine is the book corner. Over the last couple of months, I've been working on adding to the book reviews on KiriBeth, copying my reviews onto my Goodreads page, and then also sometimes transporting them over to Amazon. It'd be just ducky if you'd pop over to KiriBeth and follow us! I know we'd love to see you there!

What I have I reviewed recently? Well... 

Bryan Davis sent me a free copy of his newest novel, Reapers, to review. An exciting novel, for those of you who like something in the dystopian genre. 

Snippet: The action in this book carried each chapter along nicely, and there was never a moment for boredom. The suspense is high, the plot moves quickly, and once you got into the story, it was difficult to put the book down. Phoenix narrates the novel easily, and you can't help but want to see him succeed. The whole idea of the Reapers moving about with mystery and purpose is intriguing. I don't think I can say how muchly I enjoyed following this plot. This is the first in a trilogy, and I was surprised when it ended so suddenly. Not that that's a bad thing, of course; it just made me greatly curious for the second book... which... isn't out yet.

Click HERE to read the rest of my review.

Also, I've reviewed some self-published novels, real gems they are, too, and among them are Joan Bassington-French's Christmas at the Tittletons, Elizabeth Ender's Ransomed, and Jessica Greyson's Captive of Raven Castle

And... what's coming up next for my reviews on KiriBeth? Hopefully, you'll be seeing reviews for these books in the coming week!

Louisa May Alcott's The Inheritance

And Rachel Heffington's Fly Away Home!

So, please head over to KiriBeth! A follow would be rawther dee-vine. *winks*

God bless!