Wednesday, June 29, 2011

something strange that draws me near

Those are song lyrics, my friends.  Lyrics to a song titled "Different."  Which, after I tell you what I have to say, is probably what you'll think I am--different [read: strange, unusually odd].

If you know me at all, you know I'd jump at the chance to see any musical theatre production.  It's near the top of the list of ways I'd prefer to spend an evening.  Seeing a Broadway musical for free is probably at the very top, just saying.  But despite the fact that there are numerous shows I'd love to see, there are two in particular that are close to my heart--two that I absolutely must see someday.

The first is The Phantom of the Opera.  I want NEED okay, really really want to see this on Broadway someday.  The closest I've ever come is a high school production.  I'm sure my fellow phans can understand this desire of mine.

The second one is none other than Tarzan.


I shall give you a back-story.  I was 12 when my sister and mom went to France, and for the first week of their absence, my dad was out of town for a business trip as well.  Enter Sarah, one of the craziest, most awesome, most hilarious people you'll meet (though you wouldn't think so on first sight) and one of my favorite people in the whole world.  She stayed with us during that week and singlehandedly made it spectacular.  Seriously, if anything could compensate for not going to Europe, that week did.  But the whole week we listened to nothing other than--can you guess?--the Tarzan Broadway soundtrack.


To this day I do not know why Sarah was obsessed with this music, why she loved it, why she brought it with her, why we listened to it every day.  But I'm ever so glad she did, because it was an absolute blast.  And now, it is a life dream of mine to see the show with this amazingly fun music.


I only have one problem, you see.  The show only ran for a little more than year, closing in 2007 because of low ticket sales.  -sigh-  I guarantee that's only because I hadn't discovered its epicness yet!  There's got to be someone I can stalk, haunt, and torment into running the show again, at least once so I can see it.  There is a production playing in Massachusetts for 12 days in July though!!!  Not on Broadway, but the same production.  Oh my, I can't even describe to you how much I want to be there.  And my family is planning on an East Coast vacation in late July...if only I could convince my parents to leave a week early...


Tarzan himself is just...wonderful.  His character, his journey, his voice.  Even his dreadlocks I don't mind.  If it weren't for the fact that (as gorillas) there is lack of proper clothing in the production, I'd be head-over-heels for him.  I relate to his sometimes-confused-ness.


Terk just may be my favorite.  Terk is a girl in the Disney film, but a guy in the musical.  Thank goodness, because he's the one that's Tarzan's tons-of-fun, always-there-for-ya best friend.  I love him.


Jane rather bothers me, just from listening to the music.  Maybe it's her obviously fake British accent.  But she seems kinda like a wimp.  But Tarzan loves her, so I guess we're okay.  ;)

  

Kala and Kerchak are Tarzan's ape parents.  I love their characters.  They have such a strong bond with each other, but Kerchak is so protective of the tribe, while Kala is protective of Tarzan.  I'm fairly sure one of the two die in the end, but since I've never seen/read anything on it (no, not even the Disney movie), I don't know.  And I don't want to look up the plotline because I want to be surprised if I ever do see it.

(I'm never surprised for musicals that I see--I always look up everything there is to know about them beforehand.  Not that they're any worse that way, but it'd be nice to go in without knowing every single twist of the story sometimes.  Like I did in Les Mis, Wicked, Lion King, etc...)

(sneak peek of awesomeness, right here.)


So now you know.  You know my strange little quirk, and my crazy desire to see this someday, even if it isn't even on Broadway anymore.  Apparently it's strangely popular in the Netherlands though...guess this means a trip to Europe?  ;P

What about you, friends?  Any unusual dreams you have for the future that most people don't understand at all?  (Yeah, most people don't get it when I tell them about Tarzan...it's just one of those things...)

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Concerning Mr. Awesome

alternately titled: in which I tell you about the most underrated but brilliant actors of the century

alternately titled: X-Men: First Class was EPIC



If you had told me a month ago that I would soon be a fan of the newest X-Men movie, I would have probably said one of two things.
1) Eww, why would I ever want to watch that?
...or...
2) Uhmm, there's a new X-Men movie coming out?


Sure, I had heard of the X-Men movies, though I'd never really had a desire to see them.  After hearing that I had never watched them, a certain wonderful person dropped the trilogy off at my house.  I watched X-Men, the first movie, and actually kinda liked it, despite my expectations and the fact that Hugh Jackman has slightly creepy hair.  It wasn't the most spectacular thing ever, but I enjoyed it.

Soon afterward, I planned to go see a movie with my friend Emily, and the only thing remotely interesting to either of us was the new X-Men: First Class.  I could have cared less about seeing it at that point ("okeeey, I'll spend the money cuz Em wants to see it so I'll go out with her").  I was also afraid I'd be confused since I had only seen the first movie.  But I went, convinced solely by the fact that James McAvoy was in it.

i love him.

It was spectacular.  As it ended, Em and I looked at each other and all I could say was: "...that was a good movie."  I cannot go on without saying that it had its *cough* immoral parts, but as a whole, I loved it and thought it was fantastic.  It was awesome, well-made, and the acting was incredible.


Here is where you get to hear about Mr. Awesome.  I've seen James McAvoy in a few things (Narnia--as Mr. Tumnus, Penelope--stupid but cute, Becoming Jane--agh he's SO amazing in this), and every time I am struck by his marvelous talent.  Many people don't recognize him, I've discovered, unless I suggest they picture him as a Faun.  ;P  In X-Men, he was Charles Xavier, and he was absolutely brilliant.


He doesn't need to overdo his acting--he's human and you feel his joy and struggles and pain.  Plus, Michael Fassbender, who played opposite him as Erik who becomes Magneto, was also really good.  Watching the dynamics of their two characters together--the way they really try to understand each other, the fact that they always play chess, their relationship and love for each other even when they know they are enemies--aghh, it was thrilling.


I don't want to spoil anything for those of you who have not yet seen it, but at the end, during the deciding, on-the-edge-of-your-seat battle, as Erik is truly becoming Magneto, when Charles is paralyzed...yeah.  I was crying.


As a prequel, it was amazing to see the back stories (since I've never read the comics).  I was ever so glad that I wasn't lost even though I'd only seen the one movie, but if I hadn't seen that movie--sheesh, it all would have meant nothing to me.  As it was, I was enthralled.

So there you have it.  I think James McAvoy is brilliant and not given nearly enough credit for his talent.  He is definitely on my top favorite actors list.  Plus, he's Scottish.  And you know what that means...yeah, he has a super cool accent (even though he can flawlessly imitate both British and American accents).


I keep wanting to say that X-Men: First Class is the best movie I've seen in a looonng time--but then...I did really like Thor.  ;)

Have you seen the new X-Men movie?  What did you think?  ISN'T JAMES MCAVOY AMAZING?!  (If you don't think so, please spare me the heartbreaking knowledge.  But then, if you really don't...that's okay--he's all mine.)

Thursday, June 16, 2011

a momentous occasion

I have something very, very exciting to share with you all.  It happened earlier this week, and it basically made my day.

To introduce this thrilling occurrence, I must confess that I have never, ever been able to blow a bubble with gum before.  To all of you who would mock me because you learned to do so when you were half my age [*ahem*]--I know.  Trust me, I fully realize how sad that is.  (When I was little, I was never allowed to chew gum, so it's not like I had much chance to practice!)

Well.

It was Tuesday, and I was babysitting all day.   As the day came to a close, Leah, the 7-year-old girl I watch, offered me a piece of bubble gum.  I eagerly accepted, planning on working on my bubble-blowing skills (or lack thereof).  To keep Leah entertained, I asked her if she would show me how to do it.  She agreed.

Thus began our little adventure that soon had us literally convulsing on the floor with laughter at the patheticness of my attempts.

But then, as she proudly instructed me just how to place my tongue, and just where the gum should be,
suddenly,
at last,

I blew a bubble!



I started shouting for joy and Leah immediately cracked up.  Granted, I wasn't successful every time after that, but--I DID IT.  And I kept practicing until my jaw was sore.

Laugh if you want.  If a little amusement is all you get out of this post, so be it.  But seriously, I was so so happy!


Another item checked off the bucket list.

;)


Some pictures of the kiddos I babysit, Leah and Ian, during our outdoorsy walk th'other day.





Please just try to be happy for me, mmkay?

=P

I'm off to a lovely weekend, including grad parties, sleepovers, and photo shoots (assuming the rain doesn't interfere).  What do you have planned for the weekend, my friends?

xo,
Jenn

ps--I joined Pinterest (yay!).  You can find me here.  I'm just getting started but I have a feeling I could get really addicted.  And super jealous of all the lovely things too.  I'd love it if you'd follow me, and be sure to leave a comment if you have one too so I can check out your boards.  =)

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

memory-making

There are times in life where I can easily look back and say, "Wow.  I am so blessed."  Life has its rough spots--recently these seem to come up more often than usual--but it also has its moments where the sun shines and the birds sing and memories are made.  The past seven days have been like that.



friendship + photo shoot.
Last Wednesday was spent with my extra-extra-special friend Abigail.  We had kinda been through a tough time in our friendship recently, and there were things we wanted to talk about--and we wanted to just hang out again because it had been awhile.  So we went to the park by her house and talked and laughed and--can you guess?--took pictures.  All photos in this post are from that day [watermarked = mine, not-watermarked = Abigail's].  I'll post more of our actual selves later, perhaps.



little kids + disney.
Babysitting.  All day.  I have a summer job doing babysitting/nannying for two adorable kids.  Leah is seven and can be a little demanding, but she's sweet.  Ian is three or four [I can't remember...] and most of the time, an angel.  Oh yeah--and they usually have the Disney Channel on all.day.long.





plans + phantom.
My sister and I had been planning on getting together with Rebekah and Hadassah to watch The Phantom of the Opera for ages, ever since seeing Rebekah's high school's performance of it.  I own the movie, but they had never seen it before.  Thursday we finally got to see it together.  It was a blast, and after listening to all of that awesome Phantom music, we ended up looking up Glee songs once it ended.  ;P



movie + relating.
Friday evening was epic.  First of all, my mom actually trusted me to drive all by my lonesome for the first time since I got my license--at least, to somewhere more than two minutes away.  I met my friend Emily and we went to the mall to window shop, eat frozen yogurt, and see the new X-Men: First Class.  I really, really liked it.  A LOT.  You can be sure to hear more about that later.  Then Em and I spent some good quality time talking.  She's just about the only one in the world who I know can relate to a major life issue I have.  And that's good for me.



power loss + games.
After Friday's beautiful thunderstorm, our power was out all day Saturday.  What a pain.  But it gave me time to start reading Jane Austen's Mansfield Park and to play good, ol'-fashioned card/board games with my little sisters.



play + fivesome.
The fantabulous fivesome [myself, Cassie, Abigail, Hannah, and Esther] planned to go see the play The Scarlet Pimpernel on Saturday evening.  It was at an outdoor theatre in a park, performing for free.  The Scarlet Pimpernel being one of my all-time favorite books, I certainly enjoyed the play.  Afterwards we spontaneously decided to have a sleepover, so we all crashed at Abigail's house for the night.



friends + food.
Hannah goes to the same church as Cass and me, but Abigail and Esther go to a different church--a church where I know basically all the people.  So on Sunday, we went with Abigail's family to church, where I got to see a large number of my friends.  Then I headed to a friend's grad party, where there was good food, crayons to color with, and many of the same friends.  And Sunday was an absolutely gorgeous day.



missions + chores.
This summer I'm volunteering in something known as Somali Summer Club at my church.  It's basically a missions/VBS program for Somali refugee kids downtown.  I had a training meeting Sunday night before falling into bed.  Only to be awoken Monday morning by knowledge that my mom is on her major "scour the whole house" kick and I had things to do.

[entering this in the flip-flop farmgirl's photo contest]

working + smiles.
Working on editing massive amounts of photos--which is fun, I might add [Photoshop, I love you].  Working on keeping two little kids entertained all day...without the Disney Channel, preferably.

And smiling because I have more friends to see, more grad parties to go to, more food to eat, more songs to sing, and more memories to make.

Friday, June 10, 2011

This is Home



There's a family I know who I refer to as "the gypsies."  Why, you ask?  Because they aren't afraid to go wherever God leads them.  Because they're willing to take a chance and see how God provides.  That's how I want to be, right there.  Trusting.  Following.  Roaming.  


I just can't be one of those people that stays in the same place their whole life.  I know some people don't have the same aspirations, but as for me--I was bitten by the travel bug.  It's in my blood.  Not travelling, not seeing the world...that thought fills me with horror.


My daydreams see me traipsing about the world with a suitcase and a camera, with God going before me and memories following behind.  I embrace the adventure my Savior has in store for me, living every moment for his glory and roaming wherever he leads me.


And I got my heart set on what happens next // I got my eyes wide; it's not over yet // We are miracles, and we're not alone

Believe me when I say that I am truly grateful and happy with all I have here, but I don't want to be confined to my tiny and insignificant corner of the world.  My heart dreams too big for that.  


"To live would be an awfully big adventure."  ~J.M. Barrie


I'm going to be the one that checks every closet for Narnia.

I'm going to sail even with a compass that doesn't work.

I'm going to find Neverland so I never have to grow up.

I'm going to enter Mordor to do battle with the enemy.

I'm going to be the one who finds her muchness.

I want to be a gypsy.


That's right, a gypsy--exploring and adventuring.  And it's not just this place physically that I don't want to be confined to and defined by.  I don't want to be defined by this world as a whole.  I am in the world, but not of it.

"If we find ourselves with a desire that nothing in this world can satisfy, the most probable explanation is that we were made for another world."  ~C.S. Lewis


Sure, my longing is to live adventurously here and now.  But when it comes down to it, I already am a gypsy.  Roaming until I find my way to my eternal home.

Created for a place I've never known // Yeah, this is home


So I'm going to travel the world.  I'm going to live each day to the fullest.  I'm going to bring glory to my Savior whenever the opportunity arises.  I'm going to laugh, cry, make friends and memories.  I'm going to be a gypsy.  A gypsy on my way to heaven, walking hand-in-hand with Jesus.


To live is an awfully big adventure.  And friends, I can't wait.

"All your life an unattainable ecstasy has hovered just beyond the grasp of your consciousness. The day is coming when you will wake to find, beyond all hope, that you have attained it." ~C.S. Lewis


And now, after all my searching, after all my questions // I'm gonna call it home // I got a brand new mindset // I can finally see the sunset // I'm gonna call it home


 ps--all photos in this post were taken by my mom during her trip to florida.  i edited them, however, and stuck my watermark on them to prevent the internet boogie man from stealing them.  ;P  and yes.  in case you're wondering, they do indeed make me jealous.



Saturday, June 4, 2011

massive

Such are the consequences of working long hours:

-massive sunburn
-massive headache
-random video




^That's not really how I normally talk.
At least, I feel like it isn't.
But my mind is fried.  Absolutely fried, I tell you.
Do long days and too much sun do things to your brain, or is it just me?

And for those of you who have seen it, what did you think of Thor?!
Oh my word.
I somehow forgot to mention in my video that Thor himself was beast.
And he had gorgeous eyes.  Just throwing that out there.

sweet dreams,
~Jenn