Thursday, July 7, 2011

Tidbits: July Edition

Picture / Photo Find

Something I Did

Sometimes I'm in the mood to watch marathons of wedding shows. I like to marvel about the dresses and shake my fist with the disgruntled wedding consultants who deal with troublesome clients. I gasp at evil brides and, well, gasp again that the amazing displays of expensive parties. And watching those shows can really skew reality when it comes to the real purpose of weddings.

I attended my first wedding this past weekend. Just thinking about it kept my mind buzzing; I fell behind in almost everything, including my blogging, haha. Technically, I've been to weddings before - but I was too young to remember. So when I was invited to a friend's wedding, I jumped at the chance to celebrate with her and find out what it's really like to attend such a happy gathering.

I grinned like a fool when I saw my friend in her lovely wedding dress; the ukulele strummed "The Way I Am" by Ingrid Michaelson, people dabbed at their eyes, and the groom waited with his a smile. They both made faces at each other to ease the tension and the love between them carried on in the air well after the music stopped playing. We listened to poetry during the ceremony (which was fantastic - I'd like that for mine one day) and the vows they wrote themselves gave a precise indication that, yes, these were two creative people in love.

The lights dimmed at dinner and we donned our 3D glasses; the candlelight bloomed hearts when we wore them. I had come with a few friends from school, and we sat back and talked about how our summers were going and the deliciousness of the stuffed peppers served with dinner. I felt warm and happy, even surrounded by people I'd never met before. The atmosphere was like nothing I've experienced - perhaps this is why Shakespeare liked to end his comedies with a wedding. And I realized this: More than anything else you could have at a wedding - fancy placeholders, table decorations, fresh flowers - the most important thing is to be surrounded by people who love you. I know that sounds incredibly mushy, but it's how I feel, haha. So, I think, I need to keep making many humorous and heart-warming friends :D

A Quote from a Book I Love

A friend of mine (not the wedding friend, haha) once recommended this book called The Little White Horse by Elizabeth Goudge. I hadn't gotten to read it right away, but it mysteriously showed up at a bookstore while I wandered one day, and I took the little paperback home with me and devoured it within a day (bad habit of mine, haha). There is a movie based loosely on this book, called The Secret of Moonacre, but I promise you that it's very different from the book. So I suggest you read the book first, and then enjoy the movie, haha.

One of the aspects of the book I thought was lost with the changes into film is the relationship between the heroine, Maria, and her friend named Robin. So, in honor of the two of them, I'll quote from the first time Maria thinks about Robin, upon moving in with her uncle in his mysterious home:

"Wiggins was deeply asleep at once, but Maria lay for some time between sleeping and waking, thinking of the beautiful park through which she had driven to this lovely house and imagining herself running up one of its glades. And then her fancy became a dream and she was in the park, with the scent of flowers about her and spring trees talking to each other over her head.

"But in her dream she was not alone, Robin was with her, running beside her and laughing. And he was just the same - just as he had been when in her childhood she had been sent to play in the Square garden, and had felt lonely, and he had come running through the trees to companion her loneliness. He was just exactly her age - or perhaps a little older, because he was a head taller than she, and much broader.

"There was nothing ethereal about Robin - very much the opposite; which in face proved to Maria that he was a real boy and no mere creation of her imagination..."

Song I Can't Stop Repeating

"Walnut Tree" by Keane

Keane's an old favorite of mine, but I always seem to find more songs by them that I've never heard of. This one is so haunting and gentle. Lyric time!

Once there was a great storm,
Pushed my head beneath the waves,
I was gone.

Underneath the walnut tree,
Where you said you'd wait for me,
And I waited a long, long time

A Writer Thing

Speechlessness. When is it do you find that words fail you? Maybe you see an painting hanging at a museum that makes you pause and stare. Perhaps you found your grandmother's old photo album and leaf through a old black-and-white story. I've been relying on the written word a lot more than I used to, the more immersed I get in my grad school endeavors. Sometimes I dream about words. I have tea with them. We play miniature golf. But sometimes there comes a moment where I open and close my mouth like a fish, trying to summon words and finding them gone as a giant broom has blown by and swept them away.

And when I feel this way about another piece of writing, it often scares me. I want to respond. I want to send out the email, the letter, the postcard that expresses my wonder and excitement in just the right way. Or any way at all. That word-broom is a good one. I might have to replace my vacuum if this keeps up.

On the flip side, I wonder if someone will feel this way about my own writing. I'd feel bad about it, actually, if the gaping fish syndrome were to fall on an enthusiastic reader. I think I've gotten so used to hearing back, and talking with my readers, that it surprises me to have a troll reader now and then (since I'm mainly referencing my experience here, I guess it's okay to call them trolls, haha). I have to remember what it's like again, to stare a blinking cursor until my eye's tear up from, well, staring. If only there was some substitute for words, just when you need it, that makes the message clear.

Video I Watched Too Many Times

So, you all already know how much I love silhouettes. Well, here's a vision of magic, haha! I wish I could do something like this, but I think my high school art classes assured me of failing at eyeballing the world realistically (Hmm... that may have something to do with my writing, haha).

Food I'm Craving

New Potatoes, guys. Have you tried them yet? I'll preface here by saying that I'm not a big potato fan. I do eat french fries and love potatoes in soup, but I won't choose a baked potato or mashed potatoes over most sides. However, I'm madly in love with new potatoes. My supermarket doesn't sell them fresh, but I picked up some cans of them to try - and they're delicious. Kind of like the lychee nut of potatoes, haha. The main difference between new potatoes and regular potatoes is that the new ones are picked immaturely. That's it. And someone, there's something mystical in this act of early picking that creates a great taste.

I've been chopping up the new potatoes, added onions, and drizzled them with garlic-flavored vinegar. I'm not anything like a chef (Queen of the Microwave), but it's really easy and tasty.

Photos from We Heart It


  1. I've attended two weddings the past month: one was a pretentious, costly affair of my cousin and his bridezilla; the other was the simple and heartwarming wedding of a family friend. :)

    I've heard many good things about The Little White Horse. I actually recommended it to my sister (though I've never read it!) since it sounded like something she would like. (She's a big a fantasy fan.)

    I loved the 'A Writer Thing' section. I often feel speechless when I hear a really awesome song or finish a book that had an unexpected ending. But more often, like you, it's the words of others that leave me gasping and gaping like a half-wit. And I want to respond too, tell the people how much what they wrote touched me. But I can't communicate it well enough. I usually just try the best I can. A pathetic attempt at admiration is better than none at all, right? Maybe not.

    New Potatoes? Hmm, haven't heard of those. But I do LOVE potatoes, so I will consume anything potato-related with gladness.

  2. The wedding sounds so very warming, I know that if I am ever to get married it will be very simple and of course out of doors in a vast countryside somewhere. I haven't thought about it much seeing as Im only twenty but the one you attended sounds perfect.

    I've been interested int hat book for awhile now but seeing as my shelf is bending in the middle from all the books I have yet to read I shall have to be content with adding it to my wishlist, it sounds magical though. I love finding lost treasures in bookstores, I just left a quaint old used store with a stack of books up to my chin, despite telling myself I don't need any more it is as if something takes over me and my willpower is rendered useless. My room is beginning to look very much like a library.

    I entirely understand the writers thing, too often it happens to me. And then, as though to make up for lost time the words come flooding back making me a slave to them. But I suppose I wouldnt have it any other way. Lovely post dear bird, as always.

    xx and hugs


  3. oh I love Keane too, you've made me want to listen to them now. Lovely, tidbits, as usual :)

  4. Just letting you know (though you may have already seen my goodreads "review"), after waiting in a queue at the library for weeks, I finally got my hands on The Sugar Queen! I liked it quite a lot, much more than her other books (for reasons I am unable to pinpoint...). I was quite surprised by the ending too (the whole Della Lee thing)! I love twists like that.

    Thanks for the recommendation which gave me the final push to go ahead and give it a chance! :)

  5. @Melee Yes! You should totally read The Little White Horse. Sometimes I think that books just come into your life when you need it (... like The Sugar Queen, haha). So when you do get to read TLWH, it'll be at a time when you can really kick back and enjoy it. I feel like I've had that experience a lot, especially when I'm on the lookout for a book and find it waiting for me at a store :D

    I liked what you said in regards to writing responding :) Sometimes I wish there was a chart of things to say that match with what you feel. Hey... someone should do that! :D

    YESSSS!!!! I'm so glad you finally read it! I say this a lot, but don't you think that Adam, the mailman, is a great character? And Josey was just really cool. I loved following her journey. Yes, the twist was so well done.

    Feel free to recommend anything you think I might like :D It would be cool to read the same book the other way around, haha.

  6. @Jhordyn Ashley I'm not an outdoor person, so I guess mine future wedding would be indoors. After all, I have glasses that change in the light, so that would look pretty awkward (contacts scare me, haha).

    Me too! Used bookstores just eat up my bookshelf room. I'm always running out of room, and yet, find some kind of crack in the shelf to stick in another book. I think I need to give some away though - ones I don't read as much anymore. It's just a matter of actually sitting down and making the pile.

    @hila Keane just continues to be a magical band. And, well, I like that they pose in pea coats a lot. Extra points for that :)