The Great Depths of the Ocean are Entirely Unknown to Us: Twenty-Thousand Leagues Under the Sea

Day 15) O is for Ocean: Choose a book that takes place on or in the Ocean

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Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea by Jules Verne

This is one of my top favorite books.

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I started reading this book the same way I started reading all the classics, The Great Illustrated Classics collection at my local library.

And this is one of my all-time favorite stories. Just like Doc Brown

Doc Brown: So do I. “20,000 Leagues Under the Sea”, my absolute favorite.

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As I mentioned before I love Jules Verne. I’ve read almost everything by him.

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My favorite thing about this novel is everything they see and all the adventures they go on.

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Another amazing thing was how Verne was so ahead of his time. In his novel Captain Nemo has electric lights on his submarine, it wasn’t until more than thirty years that was possible. He just had all these ideas or improvements that inspired people to create and copy them.

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This book also has some solid math and science, based on current inventions of the time and what was known. It is just a fantastic book!

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The book takes place in 1866. All the countries are agog as something seems to be destroying ships. Something…or some monster!

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They call in the top people to launch an expedition to destroy whatever it is that is doing this to them. One of the people called in is Professor Pierre Aronnax, a marine biologist. He believes that the creature is something from the very depths of the oceans, as it would need incredible strength to survive that and destroy the ships the way it does.

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Maybe a giant sea monster or narwhale?

He takes along his valet, Conseil, and the two meet and become good friends with Canadian Whaler, Ned Land, as they sail the sea searching for the creature.

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They eventually find the creature, which rips apart the ships set after it. The only crew members to survive are Professor Aronnax, Conseil, and Ned. They try to find something to grab onto and drift on, when they grasp the monster and discover it is not a sea creature after all…

Say What

It is a super advanced submarine.

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They are taken inside and saved by the captain, Captain Nemo. He decides to let them live because he greatly appreciates the intellect and things that Professor Aronnax has written.

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But they are forced to remain on the ship forevermore, as they can not be returned to the surface. Saved but not free.

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Conseil enjoys being underwater at first, but begins to wish for home. Ned has never liked being under the water, and from the beginning has been trying to figure out a way to escape their imprisonment. The only one who is thrilled with this arrangement is Professor Aronnax, as being a marine biologist this is the opportunity of a lifetime to learn about what really happens in the deep blue.

What is under the water?

What is under the water?

They travel 20,000 leagues around the world; being the firsts to look upon Antarctica (as it wasn’t officially visited until 1911), battle a squad of sperm whales, visit shipwrecks, walk along the ocean floor, witness all kinds of marine life, fight off cannibal islanders, and are attacked by a giant squid in one of the most harrowing battles in literature.

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As they journey they discover that their Captain has a lot of bitterness and rage; attacking ships because of an old pain.

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For one who is so stone faced and set in his ways, will they ever be able to convince him to set them free? Or will they be stuck under the sea forever?

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Yep just one fantastic read you need to check out for yourself.

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No matter how many times I read this book it is still one wild ride! What can I say?

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

For the previous post, go to I’d Spent Some Time As a Kid Wishing My Name Were Ashley or Katherine, if Only Because It Would Have Made Life Simpler, But My Mom Liked to Tell Me That My Name Was a Litmus Test: Along for the Ride

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For more on 20000 Leagues Under the Sea, go to Heaven on Earth

For more Jules Verne, go to I Think I Have Found a Means of Conveyance…An Elephant: Around the World in 80 Days

For more ocean adventures, go to I Finally Read Moby-Dick

For more marine biologists, go to  You’re Gonna Need a Bigger Boat: Jaws (1975)

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Today’s pick is Carol of the Bells. This song was composed by Mykola Leontovych, and written by Peter J. Wilhousky in 1914.

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For more Christmas Carols, go to Maybe Christmas, He Thought, Doesn’t Come from a Store. Maybe Christmas…Perhaps…Means a Little Bit More: How the Grinch Stole Christmas

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Not a Hipster, But an O.F.

I hate hipsters.

Guy you suck!

Guys you suck!

Every hipster I have ever met have been these horrible elitist who think they are better than everyone.

MeanGirls I know right!

Ugh. They drive me crazy. They take all the stuff I have loved for years and jack up the prices. Oh, and don’t get me started on their fake glasses wearing. Wearing glasses can be a hard life and the people who do face all kinds of challenges and it bugs me to no end to see these people wear them for “fashion.” It’s like people walking around with hearing-aids for “fashion”. It’s so rude.

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I just can’t stand them, and to make things even worse everyone thinks I’m one.

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You see I have always loved older things. I love classic literature (and actually have read them, not just pretended).

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I love records, especially the art of the album cover!

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I only like music from the past as that is what I grew up listening and I just cannot connect to modern music.

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I love classic cinema as that is what my mom used to show us when we were growing up. I remember being the only kid who liked “black and white” films.

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Or the only one who knew Alfred Hitchcock, William Powell, Errol Flynn, Laurence Oliver, Gregory Peck, Cary Grant, Jimmy Stewart, etc were.

I can only pick 5?

I also only shopped at thrift stores as it was cheap and my family stressed the idea of using something until it was broken and unfixable. For instance I carried a CD player around with me into high school. Yes about 6 years ago when everyone had an iPod or something, I was still carrying my CD player to school and CDs to change them out.

So people think I’m a hipster, but I was doing far before the “hipster” movement came out.

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Like Ginger said, I was raised old fashioned. And that’s how I like it.

It is the truth.

It is the truth.

That’s how I was raised. Vintage, old, historic, traditional; these were a way of life for us, and especially me.

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That’s right. I don’t follow the current trends, even if they are “new-old” ones. I do what I like and enjoy the things I love. Sometimes the books, clothing, film, or even dating styles I like aren’t popular:

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But I don’t care if it goes against the crowd or isn’t what “everyone else is doing”. I enjoy the things I enjoy and I’m going to keep living my life the way it is.

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For more on being old-fashioned, go to It’s Not Old…It’s Vintage

For more on hipsters, go to We’re in the Future: Good-bye 2015

For more in Italo Calvino, go to Baby Jane Austen

For more Ginger Rogers, go to Food, Food, Food!

I Must Stay Strong

So the other day I went to the bookstore, and you know how much I love that.

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But this time I had a plan. I had far too many books at home that I had yet to read; so I wasn’t going to buy myself anything, just birthday shop for my friend.

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But then when I started looking I found all these books half off.

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So I grabbed a bunch I liked along with some potentials for my friend. But then I looked at the bargain books. They were beautiful hardcover classics and oh, my I wanted them all.

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So there I was with stacks of books, looking and wanting them all.

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Nothing else I seem to have this problem, except with books.

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But then reality hit me. I already needed more shelf space, and really have books spilling everywhere.

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So I did one of the hardest things, I had to put some of the books back.

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Instead I bought one book, a selection of stories from One Thousand and One Nights, in a beautiful hardcover book for only $8.

Mal_huh Whoa Wow what

I then bought a copy of Tarzan of the Apes for $2.50; a steal of a deal.

Double double yay

But then I had to do something with all the books I wasn’t taking home. So I stacked them on top of each other and carried them around the store putting them back. One of the employees saw me and asked if I needed a cart, but said no I was putting things back. He was worried about me carrying so many. But I was like I work in a library, I do heavy lifting like this all the time.

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Because you know, that’s how I roll.

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For more book-filled posts, go to One Hot Date

For more on bookstores, go to Walk My Way

Baby Jane Austen

So I’m sure some of you might be thinking that I will be writing about Jane Austen’s life as a baby.

Hoe cute she probably was

She was probably a cute baby.

Well no, I’m not. Instead I am talking about Jane Austen novels for babies!

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I know, how cool is that? There is a company called BabyLit that takes classic novels and turns them into baby primer board books; that is learning books for babies.

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Now they can also read classic novels!

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So far they have Dracula on counting: Alice in Wonderland on colors; A Christmas Carol on colors; Wuthering Heights on the weather; Moby Dick on the ocean, Jane Eyre on counting; Romeo & Juliet on counting; The Jungle Book on animals; Sherlock Holmes and the Hounds of Baskerville on sounds; Anna Karenina on fashion; Jabberwocky on nonsense; Frankenstein on anatomy; The Wonderful Wizard of Oz on colorsand Huckleberry Finn on camping.

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And of course they have covered Jane Austen with Emma, Pride & Prejudice, and Sense & Sensibility.

Double double yay

And of course me being a major fan, I just had to buy them and check them out.

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But as I have no children and didn’t have any extra book space to hold onto them for if that ever happened (my books are already in every spare spot I have) I bought them for my friend’s baby. So far I have only purchased two (Emma and Pride & Prejudice), one for Christmas and the other for her first birthday. When I buy Sense & Sensibility for this Christmas I’ll review it.

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Emma

Emma: A BabyLit Emotions Primer by Jennifer Adams

So we know the story of Emma right? The bare bones of it is a bored girl tries her hand at matchmaking:

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But in the ends her schemes don’t go anything like she planned.

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However, that is too advanced for a baby; so this one is all about emotions with cute illustrations. Emma is excited! Mrs. Bates is scared! Mr. Knightley is Loved.

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You got that right!

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Pride & Prejudice

Pride & Prejudice: A BabyLit Counting Primer by Jennifer Adams

So Pride & Prejudice, the most famous of the Jane Austen novels. In it a mother is trying to marry off her offspring, but her meddling can cause some issues.

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Plus some manipulations, misunderstanding, and perseverance see that four couples find their happy match (once again bare bones).

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So once again too much for a baby, so this one is all about counting: nine fashionable dresses, five sisters, two gentlemen, etc.

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Sense & Sensibility: A BabyLit Opposites Primer by Jennifer Adams

So this is the story of two sisters who go from being wealthy, to having nothing.

Elinor Dashwood: Marianne, you must change. You will catch a cold. Marianne: What care I for colds when there is such a man. Elinor Dashwood: You will care very much when your nose swells up.

They get caught up in others manipulations, in their own striving for happiness, and discovering that being all sense or all sensibility isn’t the right way to be; their should be a balance of both. Plus sisters will always be there for the other.

Frozen Sacrifice self love you sisters

There are also manipulations, secret affairs, meddling matchmakers and more. But of course, that isn’t something babies can grasp so instead we have opposites: big, small, happy, sad, etc.

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So What Did I Think Of It?

So while it doesn’t tell the whole story of these novels (which I didn’t expect it to) I thought these were a wonderful idea and I want to purchase them all.

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In a world where less and less people are reading, especially the classics: it is important to bring these memorable works back into the mainstream. I mean there is a reason why they were chosen as classics and they need to be read by everyone.

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And while this book focus on it’s theme (colors, counting, feelings) more than the plot of the novel; two very imoprtant things come out of here.

First, the child is being given a classic novel and grows up hearing that name and the characters; making them much more open to reading the real book when they are old enough.

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And second, you reading to your child teaches them the importance of family time and the importance of reading. Thus making them book fans too.

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So I highly recommend buying these and adding them to your child’s bookshelf. After all:

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Save Our Youth! Read Classics Today!

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For more on Emma, go to When You Shockingly Relate to Mr. Woodhouse

For more on Pride & Prejudice, go to Death Comes to Pemberley

For more on Sense & Sensibility, go to I Don’t Want You Far From Me: Sense and Sensibility (1995)

For more Emma variations, go to The Austen Series: Amanda

For more Pride & Prejudice variations, go to The Confession of Fitzwilliam Darcy

For more Sense & Sensibility variations, go to The Dashwood Sisters Tell All: A Modern Day Novel of Jane Austen

For more books based on Jane Austen, go to Captain Wentworth’s Diary 

Crocodile Rock

OldiesButGoodies

So you may have noticed by now that I love oldies, the classics, vintage…etc. I have a nostalgia for the past, even though I didn’t grow up then.

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And one place that is most apparent? Music!

Record not a laserdisc, I know.

I love music from the ’50s to ’80s. And because of my love of the past it is easy to see why I love the song Crocodile Rock.

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Elton John and Bernie Taupin wrote this song in the 1970s. It was made to be a cute and campy song; combining all the elements of what we loved about ’50s & ’60s rock.

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I love it for that reason. It just is the perfect blend of the original rock and a fun song to hum, sing, or dance along to.

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I miss stuff like that. I think we need a bit more “old fashioned” fun like that in today’s world.

I remember when rock was young
Me and Suzie had so much fun
Holding hands and skimming stones
Had an old gold Chevy and a place of my own
But the biggest kick I ever got
Was doing a thing called the Crocodile Rock
While the other kids were Rocking Round the Clock
We were hopping and bopping to the Crocodile Rock

Well Crocodile Rocking is something shocking
When your feet just can’t keep still
I never knew me a better time and I guess I never will
Oh Lawdy mama those Friday nights
When Suzie wore her dresses tight
And the Crocodile Rocking was out of sight

La lalalala la lalalala la lalalala la

But the years went by and the rock just died
Suzie went and left us for some foreign guy
Long nights crying by the record machine
Dreaming of my Chevy and my old blue jeans
But they’ll never kill the thrills we’ve got
Burning up to the Crocodile Rock
Learning fast as the weeks went past
We really thought the Crocodile Rock would last

Well Crocodile Rocking is something shocking
When your feet just can’t keep still
I never knew me a better time and I guess I never will
Oh Lawdy mama those Friday nights
When Suzie wore her dresses tight
And the Crocodile Rocking was out of sight

La lalalala la lalalala la lalalala la

I remember when rock was young
Me and Suzie had so much fun
Holding hands and skimming stones
Had an old gold Chevy and a place of my own
But the biggest kick I ever got
Was doing a thing called the Crocodile Rock
While the other kids were Rocking Round the Clock
We were hopping and bopping to the Crocodile Rock

Well Crocodile Rocking is something shocking
When your feet just can’t keep still
I never knew me a better time and I guess I never will
Oh Lawdy mama those Friday nights
When Suzie wore her dresses tight
And the Crocodile Rocking was out of sight

La lalalala la lalalala la lalalala la
La lalalala la lalalala la lalalala la
La lalalala la lalalala la lalalala la

BacktothefutureDance

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For more of my favorite songs, go to Bohemian Rhapsody

The Confession of Fitzwilliam Darcy

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The Confession of Fitzwilliam Darcy: A Novel by Mary Street

I know it is hard to rewrite a classic tale. You have the spirit of the original writer looming over every word.

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You also have the fans who are just ready to hate on you:

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But that doesn’t mean you have to write the most boringest version of Pride & Prejudice I’ve read so far.

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On the cover it says:

“The Holy Grail of [Pride and Prejudice] sequels for many Darcy fans.”

I don’t think so.

Majorly

Majorly

Darcy is just so closed off and robotic, no warmth, sadness, surprise; any emotion at all!!!

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Every word just makes me want to go to sleep. I need MY CHARACTER TO HAVE REACTIONS! EMOTIONS! FEELINGS! SOMETHING!!! ANYTHING!!!!

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Just not worth your time at all. Try reading An Assembly Such as This or Darcy’s Story.

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For more books from a Jane Austen Hero’s perspective, go to Darcy’s Story: Pride and Prejudice Told From a Whole New Perspective

For more Pride & Prejudice, go to Be It Ever So Humble

For more works based on Jane Austen, go to Pride & Prescience (Or a Truth Universally Acknowledged)

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So today’s Christmas Carol is one I am sure you have never heard of. In fact I can’t recall where I first was introduced to it, but I love this carol.

Today’s is I Saw Three Ships (Come Sailing In). This song was printed sometime in the 17th century, the most known version being printed in 1833. Many question the three ships, as how would three ships come to Jesus in Bethlehem.

I think it was a way to blend modern times with the biblical three wise men.

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For more Christmas Carols, go to Joy to the World

Going on a Treasure Hunt

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Day 2) Most Treasured Item

Now this is a hard question. There are just so many things I love, how could I choose just one? Well I can’t, sorry. Instead I am going to list my top 5 treasured items.

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5) My Library

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I know this sounds like a copout, but it’s the truth. I have so many favorite books in there that it would be hard to pick just one. I have classics, mysteries, horror, romance, comics, my bible, childhood favorites, books that were gifts, books that were recommended, books over a hundred years old; it’s a lot and I value every one.

For more bookish posts, go to Walk My Way

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4) Tea Mugs

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I love drinking tea and I have three special mugs. My first mug I won at the fair. The game was a bunch of glass cups and bowls stacked up in a pyramid, and the point of it was to toss your quarters into them. Whichever ones the coins landed in, you were able to take home. I won two glasses, a bowl, and a beer mug. But I don’t like beer, so I use that mug for my tea which is awesome as it is gigantic!

My second favorite mug is one I made after going to Disneyland with my friends. I wanted to bring back a souvenir, but couldn’t find anything I really liked. So when I got home I went to Walmart.com and made a collage mug with pics from the trip.

And my third mug, a pint sized mug that comes with a lid. It is AWESOME!

For more on tea, go to Never Big Enough

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3) Star Wars Collection

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Some of you might think I’m strange or a loser, but I don’t care. I love Star Wars and think it is the coolest thing ever. I have a huge collection of all kinds of Star Wars memorabilia.

I have action figures (Barbie size) of Han Solo, Princess Leia, Obi Wan Kenobi, Darth Vader, and Chewbacca; a stuffed Chewbacca; a R2D2 mug; two commemorative coins (princess Leia & Darth Vader); all of the collectable Slurpee cups, 2 special edition Burger King crowns (one with the characters from the original and the other with characters from the new film); the graphic novel of Return of the Jedi; Star Wars Monopoly, two Star Wars watches; and much much more. It has taken me quite some time to hunt down some of these objects, and I would hate to part with them.

For more on Star Wars, go to We Want You

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2) Tippi Hedren’s autograph on my copy of The Birds

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So I haven’t gotten around to reviewing this film for Horrorfest yet, but will be soon. This is one of my all-time favorite Alfred Hitchcock films along with being the first of his films I had ever seen, quickly becoming the gateway to the road of my obsession. Not only was this the first Alfred Hitchcock film I have ever seen, but the first one I have ever owned, saving up my money and purchasing it, And believe me that took a lot as I was a young girl (about 7 or 8) and didn’t get an allowance.

Anyways, one year when I was in college I was looking at the paper and saw Tippi Hedren was going to be at Bodega Bay (where the film took place) and was going to be signing autographs. I had already made plans with my family that were unbreakable, but encouraged my friends to check it out, and if they did could they please take my DVD with them.

Long story short they stood in a massive line and had to pay (to this day none of them will reveal how much no matter how hard I try to get it out of them) in order to get the autograph for me. Not only is it awesome to have Tippi Hedren’s signature on a film that changed my life, but every time I look at it I am reminded of how amazing my friends are and how much they care about me. 🙂

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1) Clint Eastwood Autographed picture

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Sorry the pic is of low quality and a bit blurry (I purposely made my real name hard to read.

Anyways, yes you all now how much I simply adore Clint Eastwood. I think he is an amazing actor and a total hottie. Last year I wrote him a fan letter and sent a picture (in a self addressed stamped envelope) asking him to please sign it. I also gushed about how much I loved him as an actor. In December I was surprised with the greatest gift of all, my photo back with his signature. Not only is it an amazing piece of memorabilia to own, but it makes me feel so special to know that Clint took time out of his day for little ole’ me.

For more Clint Eastwood, go to Year of the Anniversaries 

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To start 30 Day Challenge from the beginning, go to Musical Madness