Once Upon a Time There Were Three Sisters…

So I was trying to figure out how to review the beginning of Mansfield Park as it is a little different from her other books. It is more like Sense and Sensibility with a bit of a backstory on the three sisters, Fanny’s mom and aunts.

Hmm…

The more I thought of it, the more it made me think of a fairy tale opening, I mean you have three sisters that only one marries well-it kind of made me think of the folktale The Three Sisters, Cinderella, One Eyes, Two Eyes, and Three Eyes, etc. So that is how I am going to treat this-like a fairy tale.

Our story starts many years ago (thirty to be exact): Once upon a time there were three beautiful girls: a Miss Ward, a Miss Maria Ward, and a Miss Frances Ward. These ladies were lovely, but unfortunately:

The second sister married first, and had the extreme luck to catch the eye of a Baronet, Sir Thomas Bertram, of Mansfield Park. The two married and she became Lady Maria Bertram.

Lady Bertram exalted in her success, a lady! Such an elevated status was a beautiful thing to behold!

Her family were in sweet felicitations over the event as well, especially her older and younger sister who hoped that such a marriage would also give them their own happily ever after. Unfortunately, this is not that type of story.

The other two of these sisters were so unlucky that nothing ever succeeded with them, the eldest, Miss Ward, after six years was finally able to win a husband, a Reverend Norris. He was friend of her brother-in-law, Sir Thomas Bertram, and having no fortune, Sir Thomas kindly bestowed the living and parsonage of Mansfield-so that this sister was cared for all her life.

The youngest sister, no less pretty, had the worse luck of all. She married a “lieutenant of marines, without education, fortune, or connexions[sic],” and became Mrs. Price.

Sir Thomas would have easily done all he could to have helped his brother-in-law (as pride made him wish all in connection to him were of an upstanding position), although his profession was something that he had no easy hand involved in.

But alas, before any such things could have been put into motion, a terrible and destructive row was set up betwixt the sisters. The eldest sister had a thorny heart and her temper was not easily assuaged. She immediately sent forth the most powerful soldier in her arsenal-an angry letter. Lady Bertram thought no longer of her sister-out of sight out of mind-except that Mrs. Price was spurned on by the missile and fired off one of her own.

And as it goes, the sisters were locked in bitterness and the bonds broken betwixt them.

Eleven years passed by and the Prices went further and further into poverty. The Prices had fallen into such poverty that Mrs. Price was faced with the decision of whether to swallow her pride or continue the separation.

Mrs. Price had lived a disheartening and dark life. “A large and still increasing family, an[sic] husband disabled for active service, but not the less equal to company and good liquor, and a very small income to supply their wants…” With every passing day she grew more unsure what to do next, how to survive.

She became pregnant with her ninth child, and with this child was born a renewed hope, and she sent a missive to Sir Thomas and Lady Bertram, full of “contrition and despondence, such a superfluity of children, and such a want of almost everything else, as could not but dispose them all to a reconciliation.”

Mrs. Price hoped and prayed they would take one of her sons, any of them and raise them in a wonderful fashion. But instead the choose the eldest girl?

The eldest girl, Fanny, was a lovely and sweet-natured girl. Kind, humble, quiet. Mrs. Price was puzzled at first as why they choose her, but eagerly sent the child on her way.

The new child was quiet, scared, unsure. She would often tuck herself away in the chimney corner to sit quietly.

Her two eldest cousins, Tom and Edmund, were seventeen and sixteen. Tom, the eldest, ignored her, while Edmund looked upon her kindly as any sixteen year-old would look upon a ten year old. The two younger, female cousins were a different story. Maria, thirteen, and Julia, twelve, did everything that they could to make her unhappy. The poor girl, Fanny, bore everything patiently and dared not complain to any.

For more Fanny Price, go to Little Literary Classics Mansfield Park Cloth Book

The Conscripted Seamstress

From the Madsen Creations tumblr: Fashion Inspiration Journal

So I do not sew-not at all. I have tried to do it and have failed again and again. Sewing is just not for me. I get completely flabbergasted.

From the Madsen Creations tumblr: Fashion Inspiration Journal

I am like Sandra Bullock in Miss Congeniality, when I look at the sewing machine and the instruments.

So those of you who follow me on instagram and facebook may have seen my embroidery, and might be wondering, isn’t that the same thing as sewing?

Sewing is about construction-in clothing or accessories. Typically you are joining two pieces of fabric together to make something or mending a hole or frayed edge.

Embroidery is about style-you are adding careful and intricate stitching to something, to elevate a pillowcase, dishcloth, blanket, or other home goods.

So embroidery is something I know how to do, my mom taught us young and I have embroidered pillows, dishcloths, pillowcases, blankets, baby shirts, etc. After all:

So last week my friend was getting married and she was planning on saving money by wearing her mother’s old dress.

I told her to try it on months before, just in case it didn’t fit, but she didn’t. On Thursday, two nights before the wedding, she tried the dress on and it didn’t fit.

They weren’t able to add more cloth to it, instead a new dress had to be made. Friday, the day before the wedding.

But my sister, she went to work and created a dress in a day.

What?

After the dress rehearsal, I went over to my parent’s house and saw my sister sewing on appliques to the dress. If she was to be doing it on her own, she was going to be up all night and we were supposed to be at the church at 9 on Saturday.

Ouch!

So my mom lent a hand and then they conscripted me into service.

Like I said sewing is not for me, and I kept messing up. I threaded the needle wrong and it kept falling out. And I was moving so slow…

We stayed up until two in the morning and my sister and mother did lots of appliques…but in the four hours I sewed….I did one.

Yes, this is why I don’t sew. But I was pretty proud of my one applique.

For more on sewing, go to Desire & Decorum: Chapter 3, Threading the Needle

For more embroidery, go to Jane Austen Manors

For more on weddings, go to Crazy Rich Asians

A Dog’s Life: Chinese New Year

The Chinese New Year goes from February 16-March 17 this year. Because the 17 is also Saint Patrick’s Day, I decided that I would post 8 of my favorite fictional dogs and 7 Irish heroes, posting both on the same day.

Alright!

Years of the Dogs are 1934, 1946, 1958, 1970, 1982, 1994, 2006, 2018, and 2030. Some qualities of Dogs are loyal, honest, kind, cautious and prudent.  Dogs will do everything for the person who they think is most important. Dogs are not good at communication and it is difficult for them to convey their thoughts to others-often they seem to be stubborn. Dogs have good natures, are always ready to help others, and tend to be sarcastic.

Dogs are best with rabbits, but also compatible with rat, tiger, monkey, and pig.

So now onto the countdown.

8) Ambrosius from Labyrinth (1986)

Sarah accidentally wishes her little brother to be taken by the Goblin King. She has to go after him and complete a series of tasks to win him back before Midnight or else he is lost forever.

***Ambrosius***

An adorable sheepdog who is a strong, cute, and noble steed for his rider, Sir Didymus.

For more on Labyrinth, go to Changes, Turn and Face the Strange

7) Pooka from Anastasia (1997)

Anastasia is a fictional story based on the real life Romanov missing princess. In this story, Anastasia loses her memory during the rebellion, and is put into an orphanage where she is given the name Anya, and is released on her 18 birthday. She adopts a stray pup and meets two conmen, Dimitri and Vladimir, who try to dress her up as the lost princess to fool the Dowager Empress. Meanwhile, the evil Rasputin is trying to kill Anya and destroy every shred of the Romanov family.

***Pooka***

Pooka is an adorable little pup that becomes Anya’s friend and family member when she has no one. As Rasputin and his minions try to attack her, he does all he can to protect his girl.

For more on Anastasia, go to I’ll Always Be There When You Need Me: Anastasia (1997)

 

6) Asta from The Thin Man (1934)

Nick Charles is retired famous police detective, having left that life behind when he married the wealthy socialite and heiress, Nora. But it is hard to stay out of the game as cops, criminals, and old friends are always trying to bring him back in.

***Asta***

Asta is an adorable police pup that helps out his masters with protecting them and providing some fun comedic moments.

5) Toto from The Wizard of Oz (1939)

Dorothy Gale is a young girl in grey Kansas. She lives with her aunt and uncle on their farm, along with the farmhands. When their mean neighbor takes Dorothy’s dog away for snapping at her; Dorothy decides to grab her dog and run away. She gets caught up in a twister and ends up in the land of Oz. She ends up on a journey to find the Wizard to get home; pairing up with a Scarecrow, a Tin Man, a Cowardly Lion; and chased by the Wicked Witch of the West.

***Toto***

Toto is the best friend a gal could have. He protects Dorothy in everything-man neighbors, witches, and even against a lion. He keeps her company, he makes her life, and is just plain adorable.

For more on The Wizard of Oz, go to There’s a Cyclone Coming: The Wonderful Wizard of Oz

4) Snoopy from Peanuts

Peanuts  is the story of a group of kids that are more adult than kids. Charlie Brown is often depressed and struggles with life, Linus philosophizes but still carries his security blanket, Lucy is bossy, mean, and a psychiatrist for a nickel, Charlie’s dog Snoopy who writes novels, imagines himself as a WWI flying ace, and more.

***Snoopy***

Snoopy is a cute, silly, prankster with a great imagination that makes every comic, film, and TV program hilarious.

For more on Peanuts, go to 25 Films of Christmas

3) Bruno from Cinderella (1950)

Cinderella was born wealthy, but after her father died the stepmother took all power away and set her as a servant. She has her animal friends and keeps her positivity. When the Prince has a ball, Cinderella does all she can to go.

***Bruno***

Bruno is an adorable and cute dog that tries to protect the farm and the animals. He hates the cat Lucifer, but tries to follow Cinderella’s commands and is friends and helpful to all. He is loyal to a fault and protects Cinderella as much as he can.

For more on Cinderella, go to Waiter, There’s Some Disney in My Jane Austen

2) Scooby-Doo from Scooby-Doo Where Are You & More

I used to watch Scooby-Doo, Where Are You?13 Ghosts of Scooby-DooA Pup Named Scooby-DooThe New Scooby-Doo Movies, The New Scooby-Doo, What’s New Scooby-Doo, Scooby-Doo and the Ghoul School, Scooby-Doo and the Reluctant Werewolf, Scooby-Doo Meets the Boo Brothers, Scooby-Doo! in Arabian Nights, Scooby-Doo on Zombie Island, Scooby-Doo and the Alien Invaders, Scooby-Doo and the Cyber Chase, etc.

Scooby-Doo is about a group of teenage friends who travel throughout the United States, and later the world, solving mysteries and having a great time.

***Scooby-Dooby Doo***

Scooby-Doo was adopted by Shaggy and is “his” dog, but in reality Scooby doesn’t even consider himself a dog as he is so advanced. Scooby can talk, think, and loves to eat. He often steals somebody’s meal, typically Shaggy. Scooby is a total coward, but in the end will come through for his friends, as long as he is given a Scooby snack. He assists Shaggy with the comedy, helping them accidentally foil any plans made by the criminals. He and Shaggy are the only characters to appear in every TV show & film.

For more on Scooby-Doo, go to The Cruel Giggling Ghoul: Teen Titans Go (2016)

1) Wishbone from Wishbone (1995-1998)

The show was about a dog named Wishbone, his master Joe and Joe’s mom (Joe’s dad passed away) along with Joe’s friends Sam and David. In every episode it covered something happening with the characters and related it to a classic novel that Wishbone was reading and would retell. When Wishbone would tell the story, he would always be the main character.

***Wishbone***

Wishbone was absolutely adorable, everyone wanted their own Jack Russell Terrier. Plus he was the best dog as he was kind, caring, loyal, helpful, and just perfectly trained. And most of all, he brought such a strong love of reading and reading the classics. After this show I read almost every book he mentioned, the children’s version of course.

For more on Wishbone, go to To Fandom With Love

For the 2017 Chinese New Year, go to Nobody calls me Chicken: Chinese New Year

For the 2016 post, go to A Little Monkey Business: Chinese New Year

For the 2015 post, go to Well I Feel Sheepish: Chinese New Year

For the 2014 post, go to A Horse’s Tale: Chinese New Year

For the 2013 list, go to Snakes on a Post: Chinese New Year

 

Why I Still Love My Fair Godmother

Day 25) Y is for Young: Choose a junior or Young adult book

my-fair-godmother

My Fair Godmother (My Fair Godmother #1) by Janette Rallison

I first came upon Janette Rallison when I stumbled upon her book, All’s Fair in Love, War, and High School (Pullman High #2). I thought the story was hilarious, fun, the characters were fun; i.e. I just LOVED it!

Iloveit love

I then went on to stalk her work and reading anything published that I could get my hands on: Just One Wish; My Double Life; It’s a Mall World After All; My Unfair Godmother; How to Take the Ex Out of Ex-Boyfriend; Fame, Glory, and Other Things On My To-Do List; Revenge of the Cheerleaders; Playing the Field; and Life, Love, and the Pursuit of Free Throws. 

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But out of all of these, my favorite was and still is My Fair Godmother.

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Now you all know I like fairy tales,

FairyTales

I mean I have already reviewed I think four retellings. And this book is the ultimate: you get a combo of two fairy tales, magical creatures, princes, funny situations, and just all around a fantastic book.

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Yes, even though I’m heading into adulthood more than “young adult”; I still read this book like every three months. I just can’t get enough.

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Chrysanthemum “Chrissy” Everstar wants to attend Godmother University and go from “fair” to full. For extra credit she was sent to the Delano family in Herndon, Virginia the 21st century. There she is to figure out which Delano sister is in need of her services and assist them.

She starts with no-nonsense, older sister Jane. Jane is logical, intelligent, and doesn’t care about clothes, looks, or boys.

the mentalist NoNonsense

She is interested in one boy, Hunter, and he approaches her one day, but it turns out that he is dating her younger sister, Savannah.

What?!

What?!

Jane is upset but then begins to believe that Hunter does like her and rationalize that everything he does means he really loves her.

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But when that moment is shattered she begins an attack on him for hurting him. She gets a makeover, flirts, and does all she can to get other boy’s attentions.

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She succeeds in getting his attention and the two date, even though he hasn’t broken up with Savannah.

What jerks

What jerks

I mean seriously, you are her sister!!! You should know better.

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Anyways, after that heartbreak, Chrissy turned her attentions towards Savannah using her magic to give both sister a happily ever after full of handsome princes, beautiful gowns, and a renewed bond.

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Yes, in the words of my algerbra II math teacher: “You are not passing this class unless you show you work. Even of the answer is correct I need to see how you came to the answer or you will fail.”

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Professor Goldengill, admissions, is not taking that for the full answer. Before they let Chrissy in, they want the whole story, not part of it. They ask the leprechaun who was assigned to assist her, Clover T. Bloomsbottle, but he isn’t helpful in his information either. Only one thing left to do, call in the memory elves.

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They go in and get the real story.

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Savannah Delano

After Savannah Delano blew her money on the perfect prom dress and spent all that time bringing out Jane’s beauty; her boyfriend dumps her.

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And not just dump her, but dump her for her older sister!

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Understandably, Savannah is upset and doesn’t make the best decisions. She starts with the normal post-boyfriend phases. Eating sugar:

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Getting back and her sister by hiding her stuff

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And by buying a bikini (something her parents have forbidden her to wear) to wear to the big pool party. She hopes to capture the interest of someone else and maybe get Hunter back in the process.

I don't need you

To rub the salt in the wound, Hunter and Jane are trying to fix her up with Hunter’s friend Tristan.

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Tristan is nice, but having your ex who dumped you for your sister and then try to fix you up is just too painful and embarrassing.

So embarressed

At the pool party, Savannah removes her contacts for fear of losing them or ruining them with chlorine getting in her eyes. She goes swimming and has the most mortifying night; losing her top, going in the men’s room on accident, etc. After that she is done with life and everything.

Reality Sucks

Enter Chrissy, Savannah’s fair godmother, here to grant her three wishes. Chrissy a gum chewing, bubble headed, heel wearing godmother. Not your usual grade.

Not good

Not good

Savannah is given a contract to sign and told that until her wishes are fulfilled she will be cursed with having to tell the truth or else snakes and toads and such will come sliding out of her mouth.

ew! Gross Yuck

Savannah agrees and tries to figure out what to wish for, this popping out of her mouth:

“I just wish that somehow my life could be like a fairy tale. You know, with a handsome prince waiting for me at the ball, and that somehow when I meet him, everything will work out happily ever after.”

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Wish #1: Cinderella

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Savannah finds herself sent back to a medieval time and as Cinderella. There she has to serve two evil stepsisters and a stepmother.

Crap

Forced to do backbreaking labor for months that she has no skills or knowledge of doing before. Everyday she calls for Chrissy, but gets no answer.

Ugh great gatsby

Then Prince Edmond, Prince Hugh, and their sister stop by the house when passing through and in need of lodging for the night. There Savannah sees the handsome prince destined for her, is actually nothing but a big jerk.

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She continues to call and call with Chrissy finally answering. Chrissy has sent Savannah long before the ball to learn her lesson. Savannah, however, doesn’t want this and makes a new wish.

“I just…um…I want to feel beautiful and loved, and although I like the idea of having a prince, he has to be more than just handsome and rich. He has to be nice and kind…”

wandstar

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Wish #2: Snow White

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Savannah now finds herself as Snow White living with seven dwarves. Apparently Snow White isn’t the brightest bulb of the bunch as the dwarves treat her like an imbecile.

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And Savannah can’t do anything to show she is intelligent as she doesn’t know their names, doesn’t know how to make bread, doesn’t know how to make soup, and doesn’t know the people in the town.

I don't know what to do

After a truly embarrassing scene where she tries to outwit the tale of her poisoning to only confusing a harmless widow with the witch’s change of appearance:

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She then tries to convince the group she is from another time as Chrissy won’t return her calling her and she doesn’t know what else to do. They don’t believe her and plan to do some bloodletting to remove the crazy.

Run Away

Chrissy finally comes and Savannah makes her third wish.

“I don’t want to be in some medieval fairy tale. I want to live back home with my family. When I said I wanted a prince, I didn’t mean somebody from history or the pages of a storybook. I meant that I wanted that type of guy, but I wanted him from my own day and age. I want a boyfriend who is nice, kind-and handsome too, but that’s not the most important thing. As I’ve thought about Jane and Hunter during my time here, I realized that the problem was that he never liked me, he just liked what I looked like. He always wanted someone who was more like Jane and when they met, well, it was just bound to turn out that way. So I want someone who is loyal and has integrity-but most important I want a guy who likes my personality…And okay, I admit that in the past I haven’t applied myself in school like I should have, but I’m turning over a new leaf, so I want a guy who is smart too. And I want this guy to go to prom with me.”

wandstar

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Back Home

Savannah is thrilled to be home again, to her it has been months (one week there equals one hour in our time) but the family thinks she has just been in her room for hours; Chrissy’s magic not perfect as it should be as if no time has passed like in Narnia. And after being forced to eat medieval food, she pigs out and enjoys modern living.

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But then Savannah goes to school and hears Tristan is missing.

Not good

Not good

She starts to suspect what might have happened, with Chrissy confirming it. Chrissy has sent him back to the medieval time that Savannah was in. He has to become a prince or else he can’t come home again. Savannah tries to wish him out, but can’t as she has used up all her wishes already.

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She tries to get help from Clover, setting up a leprechaun trap, but he will only help is she promises to send him and his gold back to Ireland.

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Ugh! My life!

She agrees, and Clover points out that in the contract she can oversee her wishes. Therefore Chrissy can send her back to that time so she can aid Tristan. Savannah returns her prom dress and uses the money to buy a costume dress to wear, along with paying the postage to send Clover back. But before leaving she uses all her knowledge of the times to pack items that she can use to barter and will help them: aspirin, spices, costume jewelry of glass, silverware, etc.

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She also makes Jane promise to mail the package for her as she has no time to waste.Eventually Chrissy answers her and Savannah finds herself back in time.

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Wish #3: Turn Tristan into a Prince

When Tristan meets her he is less than happy, having spent about five months in medieval times due to her wish. Savannah explains she didn’t mean it, and she had just gotten cheated on and dumped for her older sister. This softens Tristan.

Aw, man.

Aw, man.

She shows Tristan the items she brought and he explains what must be done in order for him to become a prince. He needs to kill a cyclops, a dragon, and defeat a mysterious black knight.

ouch Hermione

The next day he goes to get fitted for armor, while Savannah runs into a wizard. There she trades some items to get a potion switching elixir. If she kisses anyone or is kissed (or licked by an enchanted animal) she will find herself trading enchantments with that person (or animal). This becomes increasingly hard as she finds herself falling for Tristan, but unable to share about her curse or show her feelings as she can’t get the enchantment to become a prince. She’ll never be able to go home!

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Savannah calls for the black knight, and ends up getting him to kiss her, swapping his invincibility for her only being able to tell the truth. She then tries to help Tristan fight the cyclops, making a mess and having to be rescued.

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Not in this case.

However things get even more complicated when Jane and Hunter arrive (having opened the box and striking a deal with Clover), the Princess wants to get rid of Savannah, both Princes appear to be fighting over her, and it turns out that she is still living out her Cinderella and Snow White wishes. This means not only does she have to go to the ball, where Edmond will fall for her, but Snow White’s stepmom is still trying to kill her.

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Will Savannah be able to save Tristan and get back home? Or will she be doomed to spend the rest of her days in Medieval Times?

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I love this book so much and think it is the penultimate for any fairy tale fan. I also just love Tristan, he is beyond the perfect guy.

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If only he were real:Dateficchar

So yes, go to your local library or bookstore and pick up your copy today!

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To start the 30 Day Challenge from the beginning, go to It Was a Pleasure to Burn: Fahrenheit 451

For the previous post, go to Xactly Why I Think Beastly is An Xcellent Story

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For more fairy tales, go to At Midnight, Your Coach Will Become a Pumpkin Again, and the Animals Will Regain Their Original Shape Until Your Next Ball: Ella Enchanted

For more on Cinderella, go to Waiter, There’s Some Disney in My Jane Austen

For more on Snow White, go to Snow White of A Day

For more sisterly rivalry, go to Fantastic Fantasies

For more Audrey Hepburn, go to The Dashwood Sisters Tell All: A Modern Day Novel of Jane Austen
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And once again:

Merry Christmas

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“And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people.

For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord.” Luke 2:10-11 (KJV)

At Midnight, Your Coach Will Become a Pumpkin Again, and the Animals Will Regain Their Original Shape Until Your Next Ball: Ella Enchanted

Day 8) H is for Happily Ever After: Choose a novel that is a retelling of a Fairy Tale

So you all know how I feel about fairy tales:

FairyTales

And besides fairy tales, I like to read retellings of them. So out of all the ones I read and have ever read I had to think, which is the best one. So I thought and thought and thought…

Thinking Hmm

And then it came to me…

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Ella Enchanted by Gail Carson Levine

When I was younger I loved going to the library (still do).

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I used to go and look through the stacks for the next books I wanted to check out. I would go down the rows and pick whatever stood out to me, along with the book I would read all the time, The Phantom of the Opera. I was obsessed with The Phantom of the Opera and would check it out, return it, then check it out again in an endless cycle.Fangirlfinishedreadingwhattodonow

 My mom didn’t like my obsession with The Phantom of the Opera as she is not a horror fan.

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So she also roamed the stacks and tried to find something, anything else, for me to read that wasn’t dark. I don’t know where or how she found it, but after I picked out as many books as I could take:

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I ran into her. She wanted me to leave The Phantom of the Opera behind as I had just read it, and wanted me to try out this book, Ella Enchanted. She had read it while waiting for me and thought I would like it. I didn’t want it as I wanted what I had picked out.

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We argued for a while and then reached a compromise, I would check out The Phantom of the Opera but had to check out and read Ella Enchanted. I agreed, but secretly thought I wouldn’t like it, even if it was based on a fairy tale; and I loved fairy tales (still do).

Oh well.

Oh well.

But then I read it!

And I had this reaction…

I love it

I thought it was absolutely amazing! I loved it so much I went on to read her other books: The Princesses of BamarreThe Fairy’s Mistake, Cinderellis and the Glass Hill, The Princess Test, Princess Sonora and the Long Sleep, For Biddle’s Sake, The Fairy’s Return, and Fairest. Levine is amazing in how she rewrites fairy tales and breathes new life into them.

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This story is a retelling of Cinderella but not one of those average ones that film companies throw out year after year; this one has curses, ogres, elves, quests, fairies, obstacles, etc. It is amazing!

Wow

Wow

And then they made the film of it…

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They ruined it! All the amazing things and hard work, and all the challenges she has to work through tossed out for a silly comedy?!!

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The book had heartbreak, real emotion, pain, suffering, while having comedy, and fun; and the film was a stupid facsimile.

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I mean they only had two things in common: Ella’s curse and the name of all the characters. Everything else was completely wrong. I was so mad I started yelling in the movie theater. That film is crap and deserves to be destroyed.

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But this book is AMAZING! And I think everyone should read it!

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If you recall from the original tale of Sleeping Beauty, or the film, fairies were invited to births and would bestow gifts on the new babies.

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Ella is visited by the fairy Lucinda and given the “gift” of obedience. Lucinda called it a gift, but it is really a curse as Ella must always find herself at the will of others, forced to do whatever she is told.

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Her mother and their cook, Mandy, tried to intercede for her but nothing could change Lucinda’s mind. Ella was stuck.

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Ella’s mother was a lady who married Sir Peter, a merchant. At first, to win her heart, he came off as kind but he really only cares about money and having his way. Luckily, at Ella’s birth he was not there but off trading, or else he would have seized upon the gift and used it to have his way always.

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When Ella was a young girl she told her friend about the curse when they were playing games. Her friend immediately seized upon it and commanded all kinds of things, only stopping when punched in the nose.

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After that, Ella was commanded to never tell anyone about it, but that command didn’t matter. She knew not to trust anyone so easily again.

Trust

How the curse works is that if Ella is given any command she must follow it. Failure to comply makes her very ill, in pain, nauseous, and feeling as if she will shatter into pieces. As soon as she begins following the orders, she is okay again.

The problem with the curse is not only that she must follow any order given, such as kill yourself, is that the curse does not recognize sarcasm or jokes, and she must follow every letter of the command. Very dangerous indeed.

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But Ella is no one’s willing puppet.

Instead of making me docile, Lucinda’s curse made a rebel of me. Or perhaps I was that way unnaturally.”

When given commands, even harmless ones that were just for her own good, Ella would do her best to fight back. Asked to bring something, she would only take part of it. Asked to do something, would only do half or find some loophole to work around it. Did all she could to fight back against it.

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When Ella was fifteen, she and her mother became extremely sick. Mandy gave the two unicorn soup, but instead of drinking it with the unicorn hairs in it, Ella’s mother removed them. Because of this Ella became well, but her mother died.

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The funeral comes and Ella is heartbroken. She makes a mess of herself and is told to go off until she can be calm. After crying her soul out, she notices that one person remains. The Prince.

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Prince Charmont introduces himself as Char and tells Ella how he enjoyed meeting her mother in the past. He tells her the stories his cook has heard from Mandy about Ella, and walks her back to her father.

Back at the house Ella meets Dame Olga and her two daughters; Hattie and Olive. Dame Olga is after her Sir Peter as he is extremely wealthy and she wants to increase her wealth and power. Hattie and Olive are annoying, boring, and just want to eat and talk about money.

Men?

Men?

Later that night, an upset Ella questions Mandy about her fairy godmother. Her mother was going to tell her when she was older, and Ella wants to see her to get her help. Mandy reveals she is the fairy godmother. She only does small magic, and her soup should have cured her mother but she removed the unicorn hair. After that, there was nothing else she could do. She can’t take her curse away either, but one day Ella will be able to break it herself.

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Ella’s family line are the friends of the fairies. They all have a drop of fairy blood in them, which doesn’t give them anything different except for unusually small feet.

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Sir Peter is not the fatherly type, as anything that doesn’t have a monetary ching doesn’t interest him. He wants to send Ella away somewhere, but she wants to stay. But nothing she can say will stop him.

Not good

Not good

Mandy has nothing she can do and promises that Ella will have fun meeting different school girls and making new friends. She gives her a fairy tale book that is magic! And a Gnomish necklace that belonged to Ella’s mother.

Before Ella leaves, she heads off to the zoo to visit all her favorite exotic animals: the dragons, birds, centaurs, etc. She runs into Char and the two spend a fun afternoon together. As they walk further toward the ogres, they come upon a baby gnome.

Ella tries to help the gnome, using the gnomish she imitates from the exotic birds. Char looks around for his parents, but the real danger lies in the ogres. Just by looking at you they know your secrets. As Ella holds the baby, the ogre commands her to come to him and give him the child.

Not good

Not good

Luckily Char commands her to stop and they find the gnome parents. Gnomes can see into the future, and one gives Ella a glimpse:

Gnomes do not see detail. What you wear tomorrow, what you will say, are mysteries. I see outlines only…Danger, a quest, three figures. They are close to you, but they are not your friends…Beware of them.”

Not good

Not good

They next day she is off to finishing school, going with Hattie and Olive. After being together for a few minuets, Hattie discovers that Ella must follow every order given. She doesn’t know why, but that doesn’t stop her from lording over Ella.

What jerks

What jerks

Hattie takes everything from Ella; her money, jewelry, and food. And when they get to school it gets no better. No matter how hard Ella tries, Hattie always has the power.

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The teachers make it no better as they are as bad as Miss Michin in A Little PrincessElla does all she can to fight back their commands, constantly trying to keep herself from becoming a puppet.

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Ella has only two bright spots in her day. One is the magic fairy book that not only presents a new tale every time you open it, but also gives letters from her friends and those she cares about. One night she reads a letter from Mandy that Char caught her a centaur and is training it for her. He is extremely upset that she was sent away as he thought Ella was perfect the way she was.

How sweet!

How sweet!

The other thing that goes better for her is that she befriends an Ayorthaian girl, Areida. None of the other girls like her because she is poor, but she and Ella become the best of friends. One night,  Hattie decides she doesn’t like this glimpse of happiness. She commands Ella to stop being her friend.

Jerk

Ella looks in her book as she contemplates what to do. In it is a note from Dame Olga to her daughters, one from Char about his ogre hunting, and then a letter from her father that he will be visiting a giant’s wedding in the hopes of seeing a fairy, and getting a fairy gift to trade. Ella sees this as the perfect opportunity and decides that she will run away from school and go to the wedding to try and get Lucinda to get rid of her curse. Before she goes she steals Hattie’s wig.

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Ella heads out to the giants, trading her wig with a baker for bread. She is told that the giants aren’t too far off, but as she travels the journey is longer and longer. She then comes upon elves with spears.

Not good

Not good

She tells them who she is, Sir Peter’s daughter, and they invite her to dinner. She shares her book with them and afterwards they show her their elfin products. Elfin made objects look as if they are alive, and are extremely valuable. They end up giving Ella one, as they like to give their gifts to those who love them.

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The net day she sets off with an Elfin pony and is told it is only four days to the giants. Unfortunately, her luck turns.

Reality Sucks

Ella is captured by Ogres. They have eaten her pony and want to eat her next, but luckily she vomits, making her too “sour” to eat. She hopes to leave, maybe if they bind her she can go, but the ogres know her story. They just command her and she is stuck.

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But Ella has one other option. She has been studying languages at school and learned how to speak ogreese. She tricks them into falling asleep, a small win but what to do next?

I don't know what to do

As she contemplates, she sees a vision of knights coming. But they aren’t a vision, they are real! It is Char. They try and capture the ogres, but are only able to when Ella charms them again and puts them back to sleep.

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After a wonderful reunion, Char sends her on her way with one of her knights. He promises that he won’t be gone long and hopes to see her again soon.

How sweet!

How sweet!

They get there just in time for the wedding. The knight heads back to the ogres, and Ella sits watching for the fairies. They arrive, but before Ella can talk to Lucinda, she grants a horrible gift to the Giants and disappears.

Ugh great gatsby

She is upset, but at least there is food.

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As she is eating she goes to talk to the other two normal fairies, but then Lucinda reappears. Ella tries to talk to her about the fairy gift, but Lucinda just commands her to to be happy, and Ella runs off looking for Sir Peter to get more orders.

Sir Peter has sold land that didn’t belong to him and will have to pay for this with all his money and then some. He tries to marry Ella off to Edmond, Earl of Warwick. To make sure things flow right, he feeds her special mushrooms to make her extra attentive.

What jerks

What a jerk

It works as she fawns over him and he is interested in her hand in marriage.

That guy!

That guy!

The next day, Ella has a horrible hangover and feels stupid about what happened. But luckily, the Earl has lost a lot of his lands and is too poor for Sir Peter; no marriage. But what’s worse, Sir Peter is to marry Dame Olga.

Blackmail!

Uhhhhh!

Hattie and Olive will be her step sisters.

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The wedding happens in the old castle and Ella tries to hide from her family and the fairy Lucinda. Luckily it is a masquerade and she has a mask to hide her identity. She sits through the ceremony and takes off as soon as she can.

Run Away

She runs upstairs into a room, when she is come upon by Prince Char.

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They skip the ball and search the castle for secret passageways and rooms, having a reunion. They stop at a garden shed where they open a bench and find glass slippers. Char puts them on her.

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Then Char asks her to dance.

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So romantic!

So romantic!

Afterwards, they decide to slide down the bannister. The second time the two run right into Ella’s confused parents.

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Afterwards, things go bad. Dame Olga finds out that Sir Peter is poor. She decides that Ella will be a servant in their house as soon as Sir Peter leaves.

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Hattie is upset that the prince likes Ella and punishes her.

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Char is going away to the neighboring country and wiill be gone for a while. He stops to see Ella before he goes, but Hattie imprisons her in her room.

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After that Ella lives out every day a servant, doing the worst and most horrible tasks. She writes to Char, and the two develop a beautiful relationship. Char is a dream come true, although he does have his faults. When his opinion is lost it is lost forever.

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But we all have our faults, if the person was a perfect person with nothing wrong with him, then he’d be as bland as a saltine.

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As they write Ella falls in love with Char, and her dream comes true when Char asks her to marry him.

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Ella wants to say yes, but she can’t because of the curse. It would be too dangerous, so she writes as Hattie and refuses the prince; her heart breaking at every moment.

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There’s real love there. She cares more about Char’s happiness rather  than her own and would never risk his life.

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She tells Mandy, and Mandy decides that Lucinda really needs to be stopped. She calls her in and they make an agreement: Lucinda will be a squirrel for three months and then an obedient child for another three months.

She'll get what's coming to her.

She’ll get what’s coming to her.

Ella holds on to the hope that in six months Lucinda will take the curse away and she can marry Char.

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The night before Lucinda is to com,e Hattie tells Ella that the Prince is coming back and is holding a masked ball. The ball will last for three nights and the Prince is rumored to pick his wife there.

OMG gasp

Ella is ecstatic. She has hope again to win Char back! Lucinda comes that night and says that she regrets everything and would love to take everything back. But Lucinda won’t, as she is done with “big” magic.

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Ella is heartbroken, but she is planning to go to the balls. She won’t talk to him, she will just sit and watch.

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They take the dresses saved from her mother, refashion them, and all is ready except is rains, a pouring rain.

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Saddened at this, she wishes that Mandy would do magic, but Mandy refuses. She calls on Lucinda who gives her a pumpkin carriage, mice turned into footmen ands she is off to the ball.

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She sees Char and stays as far away as she can. But she ends up being unable to hold out and talks to him. She tells him she is Lela and they spend a lot of time together, so much that they fall all over again for each other.

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But Hattie, not to be undone, removes the mask she wears

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And it is Ella.

OMG gasp

She hurries home as fast as she can, and they try to leave, but the Prince and entourage arrive. Char asks Ella to marry him.

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Dame Olga says yes, as that will give her power and money; Olive says yes as that will give her money; Hattie says no as she wants him for herself. Char tells her to say yes. Ella wars within herself, what should she do!

I don't know what to do

She knows that saying yes would be death of them, she practically splits apart in two; but then she refuses! She refuses!

No thank youhowaboutno

After she let’s it all out, after she has finally broken the curse: she tells Char yes.

Double double yay

They get married and live happily ever after; with Ella finally being able to make choices: good and bad, she finally is in charge of her own life.

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To start the 30 Day Challenge from the beginning, go to It Was a Pleasure to Burn: Fahrenheit 451

For the previous post, go to You Will Be Haunted By Three Spirits: A Christmas Carol

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For more on Cinderella, go to Waiter, There’s Some Disney in My Jane Austen

For more books based on fairy tales, go to I Found this Blank Book of Stitched Together Pages…I’ll Record the Details of Our Confinement: Book of a Thousand Days

For more Audrey Hepburn quotes, go to The Dashwood Sisters Tell All: A Modern Day Novel of Jane Austen

For more J. Cole, go to A Cautionary Tale

For more John Green, go to The Fans and the Furious

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Since this is a fairy tale, I thought I should pick a fairy tale Christmas Carol. I settled on the Miniature Overture from The Nutcracker Suite.

Reminds me of Degas

The Nutcracker is based on the fairy tale by E.T.A. Hoffmann’s story The Nutcracker and the Mouse King. The ballet was written by Ilyich Tchaikovsky and premiered in 1892.

I like this song a lot and it is my favorite in the entire suite.

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For more Christmas carols, go to Austenland

Tired With a Capital T

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Yes, GISHWHES is over and I’m back to blogging.

Double double yay

This year had some fun and crazy items to do. I did seven days of happiness, making a different person happy with a kind act every day. That was a lot of fun.

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Went prospecting in a public fountain. And my friend and I played badminton in the mall food court for 30 mins without anyone even noticing. Everyone was too busy on their phones.

Phew!

Then we had to wear white and get red wine poured on us from a two story building.

ew! Gross Yuck

I taped coupons to five items in the store to help someone out, a coupon fairy.

I made postcards for William Shatner wishing he has joined us in GISHWHES.

Screamer: He's in Florida your majesty, he sent this postcard. Dracula: Hmmmm... [reading] 'Dear Drac, am having wonderful time in retirement, glad you're not here, Wolfy.' Bah! How dare he retire just before the Monster Road Rally? Doesn't he know all the monsters of my realm have to be in the race?"

Made a mural all about the wonderful Honeybees and what they do for us.

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Did five chores for a mom who is overworked (in honor of Mr. Rogers). Serenaded a store employee who is overworked with a musical instrument I made myself.

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Dressed up a a Jedi and went to get a root beer float at a ’50s diner.

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I turned 15 people into robots! (their facebook pics).

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I put a compilation of our team pics together, representing where we were from. I even used The Brady Bunch font for our names. (I hope they notice and give extra points!) For the people who didn’t give a photo I had to replace them with Misha Collins.

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And I “buried” a person in popcorn in box (for the coffin, I couldn’t get a real one) in a mausoleum.

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And I did this all between my regular three jobs and donating my Saturday to a children’s free backpack fair. There was a lot more I wanted to do, but just ran out of time.

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And that being said I am now tired. Tired with a capital T, which rhymes with P, which stands for pooped out.

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But it was worth it. It was nice taking a week out and having this big adventure, doing all kinds of things you wouldn’t normally do.

Mal_huh Whoa Wow what

But now back to regular things like laundry, bills, repairs, cleaning, etc. You know all those things I ignored last week. That is…after a long nap…or reading.

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For more on GISHWHES, go to GISHWHES Girl

For more Misha Collins, go to You Can’t Have Just One!

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For more on joining GISHWHES click on this link.

To Boldly Go Where No Man Has Gone Before

So I know I haven’t gotten to Star Trek in my fangirl posts, do you might not realize this about me:

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And as this year marks the 50th anniversary of the Original SeriesI decided that how last year was on Back to the Future, this year will be on Star Trek. And next year can be Star Wars as it marks the 40th anniversary of that film. But enough on that, let’s get to our year in review!

Happy-New-Year

This is a time to reflect on what the past year held for us, the big posts, what’s new, and what you all seemed to like the most.

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This post will only cover a few things, you really should check out the year for yourself. To start at the beginning go here.

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The Views

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This year I had 68,000 views!

keanu Whoa

Last year I had 31,000 and I thought that was a lot. Thank you buzzfeed, pinterest, facebook, twitter, and readers who practically doubled my views.

The most viewed day of the year was June 19th, in which I posted Drug of Choice.

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The Number One Post

Strangely, my top posts had nothing to do with anything posted in 2015.

weird

But you all like what you like!

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So the number one post was from my Romance is in the Air Valentine’s countdown from 2013. That post was Fulfilling the List: A Walk to Rememberand I think I need to post on it once again.

Second place went to A Monster Race: Scooby-Doo and the Reluctant Werewolf (1988), from 2012, and my first Horrorfest, theHalloween countdown. In third place was I Saw Goody Osburn With the Devil: The Crucible (1996)from 2013 and my Horrorfest II Halloween countdown. In fourth we had In Rhapsody Over Clint Eastwooda post from 2013. And rounding them out in my fifth place, we had a post from 2014, Men What Happened?

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The Followers!

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So this community has really grown in numbers and I can not describe how pleased I am about that. We have gone from 14 followers in 2012 to 42 followers in 2013, 169 followers in 2014, and are now at 439. That’s amazing!

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So enough about the statistics and numbers! Let’s move on to what was covered this year and what changes I have made to the blog

1)Back to the Future

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So with it being 2015 and the year Back to the Future turned 30, we had a lot of Back to the Future love going on. It started with my first post of the year, Where We’re Going, We Don’t Need RoadsOn the amazingness of this film as it celebrates its 30 year anniversary, in Back in Time: Happy 30th Anniversary Back to the Future. My joy at watching all three films on the big screen, in The Future is NOW!: Happy Back to the Future Day!. On the importance of November 12th in The Back to the Future series, in The Temporal Junction Point for the Entire Space-Time ContinuumAn episode of Supernatural that mimics Back to the Future, in Back to the Supernatural. And a list of everything Back to the Future got right about 2015, in We’re in the Future: Good-bye 2015.

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2) Fandom Love

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This year I continued my fandom posts, posting on Sundays. This year I wasn’t as faithful, as sometimes life would throw me a curveball, but I am getting closer to completing it. I just have to stop adding things.

So far this year I have covered: Amazing Phil/Phil Lester, Audrey Hepburn, The Baby-Sitters Club, The Beach Party Series, The Brady Bunch, Brotherly Love,  The Brothers Grimm Fairy Tales, Captain PlanetThe Cat Who Mystery Series, Cinemasins, Clint Eastwood, Daredevil, Death on Demand Mystery Series, Dr. Quinn Medicine Woman, Dr. Seuss, Dragon Ball, Dragon Ball Z, 8 Simple Rules, Elvis Presley, Eureka, Everyday Sunday, The Fast & the Furious franchise, Foreigner, Full House, Gargoyles, Grimm, Growing Pains, Guardians of the Galaxy, Hans Christian Anderson, Harry Potter, Hawk Nelson, Hell on Wheels, Hercules: The Legendary Journeys, The Highlander, How I Met Your Mother, How It Should Have Ended, The Hunger Games, Indiana Jones, James Bond, Jimmy Stewart, Journey, The Kinsey Millhone Mysteries, Las Vegas, Leverage, The Lizzie Bennet Diaries, Lord of the Rings, Madeleine L’Engle, Make It or Break It, The Mentalist, Michael Crichton, Michael J. Fox, Midsomer Murders, Murder She Wrote, My Chemical Romance, Nancy Drew, The Nanny, NCIS, North & South, The Nostalgia Critic, The Office, Once Upon a Time, The Phantom of the Opera, Pokemon, The Princess Bride, Psych, Ray Bradbury, The Riyria Revelations, and Sabrina the Teenage Witch.

To read more, click on these links: Fandom Love, It’s Fantastico!, A Fantabulous Post, A FANtastic Voyage, Please Excuse My Dear Fan Lady, I’m So FANcy!, Back to the Fandoms, Old Fandoms and New Fancies, Fantom of the Opera, Fun & Full of FANcy, The Fans and the Furious, It’s a Fan World After Alland Portrait of a Fangirl.

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3) Buzzfeed Bust or Library Love

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So I was trying to get a job with Buzzfeed and posted a few things as it was part of the application process. However no one was really interested in my lists so I decided to bring that style here. I only did one, Heaven on Earth, in which I listed the best fictional libraries; but I’m thinking of doing a few more in the future.

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4) Story of My Life

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So this year we once again had stories of my everyday life. First I shared about my horrible ex co-worker, Wanda in Five to Nine. Then there was the time my friend’s car started to overheat in San Francisco and we started to stall on the bridge, in I Left My Car in San FranciscoMeeting Dr. Sexy from Supernatural in real life, in Paging Dr. Sexy.  My spot issues that rivals Dr. Sheldon Cooper from The Big Bang, in A Spot of TroubleOn how an ear infection wasn’t going to stop me from seeing the midnight showing, in Avengers Assemble. On living in a world that tries to get you to alter your appearance, in Small and ProudIt being so incredibly hot that I try to escape to England, in England Dreamin’ On Such a Summer’s DayIn which I do not learn my lesson and injure my legs again, in Walking on Pins and Needles. The fact that I will probably live out my life alone, in Crazy Book Lady. When I got caught in a crazy storm, in It’s Raining, It’s Pouring. The suffering of wisdom teeth, in Turn Your Wounds into Wisdom, and Your Wisdom Teeth into Wounds. How a baggy sweatshirt saved my life, in A Real Life Saver. Getting caught in a monsoon type rainstorm, in Every Month at the Quarter Moon There’ll Be a MonsoonChopping down the Christmas tree in Winter Wonderland.

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5) A Sense of Sense and Sensibility 

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So last year I talked about reviewing Sense & Sensibility, along with all those based on the works or rewritings. I talked about the girls’ older brother John, and how he severely let these girls down in Promises Were Made to Be Broken. The joys and horrors of sisterhood and how the two act as a unit in Sisterly RolesEdward Ferrars’ arrival into the house and being the one that brings peace to the house in The Eye of the Storm. On Elinor’s views of Edward, in To Edward or Not to EdwardHow young girl’s views of the perfect man haven’t changed in 200 years, in Some Things Never Change.

I also reviewed The Sense and Sensibility Screenplay and Diaries, a book on the behind the scenes look of the path of getting Sense & Sensibilty from book to screen.

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6) Holiday Hijinks

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So this year we celebrated a lot of holidays, real (recognized by the government) and fictional.

We started with celebrating Martin Luther King Jr.’s Birthday and the values he stood for in Color Blind. I also brought back the Chinese New Year post, this time on my favorite sheep/sheepy moments in film and literature, in Well I Feel Sheepish: Chinese New Year. Then we had my Saint Patrick’s Day post, 17 more Irish heroes from literature, film, and TV; in Lookin’ Over a Four Leaf Clover: 17 More Irish Heroes.  Couldn’t go through a year without celebrating the awesomeness of Star Wars with May the Fourth Be With You, in We Want YouI also did a post for Memorial Day, in Do the Right Thing.  Father’s Day, with love from The Terminator in Dear Dad. The 4th of July in Every Heart Beats True for the Red, White, & BlueTalk Like a Pirate Day and free donuts, in A Pirate’s Life is the Life for Me. Going bats over Batman Day, in Na Na Na Na Batman!. Friday the 13th in The Horror!!!! And of course Thanksgiving, in You’ve Got to Accentuate the Positive

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7) The Year of the Anniversaries

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This year I honored a lot of anniversaries, it started with wanting to do something for Back to the Future and quickly grew to many more things.

I started with the 82nd anniversary of women’s right to vote, in Right to VoteWe also had The Breakfast Club turn 30 years, my post being Don’t You Forget About Me. The birthday of one of my favorite men, Clint Eastwood, in Classic Clint. The 40th anniversary of Jaws in You’re Gonna Need a Bigger ScreenOn the amazingness of Back to the Future as it celebrates its 30 year anniversary, in Back in Time: Happy 30th Anniversary Back to the FutureMy three year anniversary of being a blogger, in Year of the Anniversaries. The 10th anniversary of The Iron Giant, in A Giant Metal Man: The Iron Giant (1995)And the 200th anniversary of Emma.

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8) Romance is in the Air: Part III

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So once I again I celebrated Valentine’s Day with a countdown of 14 romantic moments from films I like. The films I reviewed this year were How to Marry a Millionaire (1953), Sabrina (1954), Gigi (1958)Making the Grade (1984)The Breakfast Club (1985), A Room With a View (1985)While You Were Sleeping (1995), Hercules (1997), The Italian Job (2003), Why Did I Get Married (2007), Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day (2008)What Happens in Vegas (2008), Up (2009), and New Year’s Eve (2011)

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9) Commentary on Cinderella Cynics

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With Disney’s new Cinderella live action film, I felt the need to call out to the cynics and naysayers, and prove that their smack was unfounded and Cinderella is actually a pretty awesome story.

To read go to If the Shoe Fits: Why Cinderella is Actually Awesome.

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10) The Enigmatic and Enjoyable Emma

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Like I did with Sense & Sensibility (see #4), I decided that I would begin going through Emma, along with reviewing any adaptations or retellings of this story.

So I started off talking about the uniqueness of Emma Woodhouse among the other Jane Austen heroines, in One of a Kind. How loneliness severely affects the character of Emma and explains her actions, in All By Myself. How easy it is for people and Emma to take credit for something they actually have no control over, in Credit Where Credit is Due. On how Mr. Weston is a great man but no one ever talks about him, in Unsung Austen Men: Mr. Weston.

I also reviewed the book Mr. Knightley’s Diary by Amanda Grange, a book that looks at the story of Emma from his point of view.

And of course, a post in honor of its 200th Anniversary, We Wish You a Merry Christmas.

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11) The Painted Path of Christ

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I brought back the painted portrayals of Christ, adding one more picture to my Easter countdown. This year I choose the following images: Jesus Enters Jerusalem by Giotto, The Last Supper by Dieric Bouts the Elder, The Taking of Christ by Carvaggio, The Lamentation of Christ or Foreshortened Christ by Mantegna Andrea .

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12) Retelling Pride & Prejudice

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I didn’t do any posts on Pride & Prejudice the book as I was going through Sense & Sensibility and Emma.  However I did review quite a few novels that are based on or retellings of Austen’s work.

There was Fall for You by Cecilia Gray, in which all your favorite Austen heroines attend The Jane Austen Academy boarding school in California together. This year the school was bought and has some major changes, allowing boys to attend! How would these girls get along in a modern world, follow this link to find out.

The Accidental Bride: A Romantic Comedy by Janice Harayda; is the story of a Jane Austen devotee set to be married soon, when she suddenly has second thoughts. With everyone pushing her in different directions, she relies on her love of Jane Austen to help her through. To read the review, follow this link.

Mr. Darcy Broke My Heart, by Beth Pattillo, is the tale of a non-Austenite; filling in for her sister and taking a class along with presenting a paper on Austen. She also gets caught up in spylike drama when she becomes the owner of secret Austen papers. To see what I thought of it, follow this link. 

Pride & Prescience (Or A Truth Universally Acknowledged) by Carrie Bebris, is a mystery with supernatural elements. Caroline Bingley bags a wealthy American and marries him right away. But after the marriage she starts acting strangely. It is just nerves or something more nefarious at play? It’s up to Elizabeth to find out. Follow this link to read more.

Darcy’s Story: Pride and Prejudice Told From a Whole New Perspective by Janet Aylmer; in this Aylmer rewrites Pride and Prejudice but told from Mr. Darcy’s point of view instead of Elizabeth’s.

In The Confession of Fitzwilliam Darcy: A Novel by Mary Street, another author tries her hand at rewriting Pride and Prejudice from Mr. Darcy’s point of view

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13) The Commendable Cecilia Gray

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I reviewed the book Fall for You by Cecilia Grayand while I didn’t completely roast the book, I wasn’t the kindest. But Cecilia Gray took it in stride and retweeted my review, urging others to check it out. I’ve given a shout out before, and just want time to thank her again.

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14) 30 Years Has a Nice Ring to It

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My post She’s Still Preoccupied With 1985 is an ’80s lover’s dream. In it I detail every amazing ’80 thing that I love that turned 30 in 2015.

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15) 30 Day Challenge: All About Me

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I brought back the 30 Day Challenge, but instead of Disney I did 30 days all about me. These were the different topics: 1) Put Your Music Player on Shuffle and Write the First 10 Songs that Play, 2) Your Most Treasured Item, 3) Bullet Your Whole Day, 4)A Quote You Try to Live By, 5) If You Could Go Anywhere, Where Would It Be?, 6) Your Views on Mainstream Music, 7) What You Ate Today8) One Thing You’re Excited For9) Something That Has Inspired You, 10) What You Wore Today, 11)Something You Want to Do Before You Die, 12) Your Celebrity Look-A-Like, 13)Something That You’re Proud Of, 14) Your Favorite Holiday, 15) Five Random Facts, 16)Five Weird Things You Like, 17) Five Pet Peeves , 18) Somewhere You Would Like to Move to or Visit, 19) Something That You Miss, 20) What You Night Was Like, 21) Last Film You Saw in Theaters, 22) Something You Never Expected, 23) Your Dream House, 24) A Book You Love, 25) Your Family, 26)Five Guys Who You Find Attractive, 27) Five Ways to Win Your Heart28)Something You Regret29)Things You Want to Say to an Ex, 30) Your Opinion About Your Body and How Comfortable You Are With It

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16) My Family is Growing

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My family is getting bigger! 2015 saw the inauguration of my sister blog Mysterious Eatswhich reviews mysteries and recipes.

From Print to Screen was also born in 2015, and it compares the printed book to the screen version, declaring which was better.

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17) Horrorfest IV: The Curse

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This year’s Horrorfest covered movies, TV shows, music, and more.

For films, we had: Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde (1931), A Study in Scarlet (1933)The 39 Steps (1935)Jamaica Inn (1939), Mystery of the 13th Guest (1943), Gaslight (1944)Dangerous Crossing (1953), Invasion of the Body Snatchers (1956), Attack of the 50 Foot Woman (1958), The Screaming Skull (1958), The Bat (1959), Psycho (1960)Rosemary’s Baby (1968), The Stepford Wives (1975), Total Recall (1990)Buffy the Vampire Slayer (1992), The Iron Giant (1995)Thinner (1996), Under Wraps (1997)Alien Vs. Predator (2004)The Brothers Grimm (2005), The Visitation (2006), The Girl He Met Online (2014)Avengers: Age of Ultron (2015).

Every Friday I reviewed a TV show. This year the ones I choose were: the episode Will the Real Martian Please Stand Up from The Twilight ZoneA Haunting We Will Go from The Hardy Boys and Nancy Drew Mysteries; On Leather Wings from Batman: The Animated SeriesTed  from Buffy the Vampire Slayer; & The Magician’s Nephew from Midsomer Murders.

I did a post on some cool Monster Movie action figures I found, in Monster MashAnd I listed five of my favorite song to listen to on Halloween, in Haunted Harmonies of Halloween

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18) 25 Carols of Christmas

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This year for Christmas, I did a Carol countdown. Everyday I posted on one of my favorite Christmas carols.

The carols I picked were: All I Want for Christmas is YouAngels We Have Heard on HighChristmas Don’t Be LateThe Christmas Song (Merry Christmas to You)A Cowboy’s ChristmasDo You Hear What I HearFah Who Foraze, Dah Who Doraze, Welcome ChristmasThe First NoelGod Rest Ye Merry GentlemenHark the Herald Angels SingHere Comes Santa ClausHolly Jolly ChristmasI’m Dreaming of a White ChristmasI Saw Three Ships (Come Sailing In)It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like ChristmasIt’s The Most Wonderful Time of the YearJoy to the WorldJust What I Always WantedOh Come All Ye FaithfulRudolph the Red-Nosed ReindeerSanta Clause is Comin’ to TownThe 12 Days of Christmas, We Wish You a Merry Christmas When Christmas Comes to Town, and You’re a Mean One, Mr. Grinch

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19) When Disney Meets Austen

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I wrote a post comparing all the Austen characters to Disney ones. It took months to complete but I think it was pretty awesome. You’ll have to tell me what you think. Check it out in Waiter, There’s Some Disney in My Jane Austen.

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So what will this year hold? I don’t know. I guess you will have to join my expedition to find out.

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Happy New Year

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For 2014 in review, go to Where We’re Going, We Don’t Need Roads

For 2013 in review, go to Looking at the Past, Focusing on the Future

For 2012 in review, go to Looking Back, Moving Forward

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For more on Star Trek, go to Rock You Like a Hurricane