Archive for June, 2010

Jen’s Review of Eclipse (Spoilers Ahead)

So I went to the midnight showing of Eclipse last night after working for 11.5 hours and doing 4 programs at the library.  I honestly didn’t know if I would even make it through the movie.  Luckily, Eclipse was FREAKING AWESOME, so I had no worries about staying awake (although I did rest my eyes for a bit while we waited in the theater for three hours).

I was a little nervous about the crowd in our theater because some of the people were exceptionally annoying during the wait.  There was a group of 5 Twilight Moms who literally stood in the center aisle for two hours.  We were sitting in the first row of the back section, so they were right in front of us.  I now know enough about all of their kids from their very loud conversation that I could buy them all Christmas presents.  I finally asked them to sit down because they were being rude and they looked at me like I was an idiot.  There was also an annoying girl who kept going to the bathroom and then shouting at the people behind us to tell them all how it was in there…….really?

But once the movie started, the crowd was great!  We all laughed at the right times,  screamed at the hottie werewolves and cheered after Bella finally said she would marry Edward (I could have done without that last one though).  There was one line that Jacob says as he enters the tent where the crowd just roared with laughter and then cheered… was a fantastic moviegoing moment.  I think Taylor Lautner has done a helluva lot for the Team Jacob movement.

Here are some of my favorite parts from the movie:

*The makeup and hair in this one is so much better than New Moon.  The vampires no longer look so pasty and Edward has thankfully lost his glossy lipstick.  Rosalie’s hair is fabulous compared to both previous films.  Thank God they finally got that right.  The only complaint I have is that Jasper’s hair is still hideous, but I guess that is to be expected.

*Charlie! Charlie! Charlie!  Billy Burke is phenomenal as Bella’s dad.  Everything he did and said got such a laugh.  There is one conversation between him and Bella that got almost as many laughs as the previously mentioned Jacob line.  I was a little upset when he was oringinally cast because he looks nothing like My Charlie (I always pictured him as kind of pot-bellied and balding) but now I know that he is perfect for this role.

*I LOVED Rosalie and Jasper’s backstories.  The final shot from Rosalie’s backstory is pitch perfect!

*I thought the battle was really well done.  The special effects that are used when a vampire dies are really great and there was a lot of cheering during the fighting, especially Edward vs. Victoria at the end.

*The training scene where Alice is fighting with Jasper might be my favorite scene in any of the movies.  It unfolds exactly as I remember it from the book and the two of them are SOOOOOOO adorable with each other.  Bravo Ashley and Jackson!

*Speaking of Jackson, I was really happy to see that he had a lot more to do as Jasper.  He was really funny and he did such a great job that I completely forgot how hideous his hair was for the last half of the movie.

*Another thing that was great about this movie was all of the scenes lifted right out of the book.  The other movies have stayed very close to their source material, but Eclipse seemed to have several conversations play out almost word for word from the book.  I love it when screenwriters do that!  And this wasn’t the cheesy “And so the lion fell in love with the lamb…” crap, I mean things like the tent scene and the very last scene of the movie.  (TENT SCENE! TENT SCENE!)

*Did I mention the tent scene with Jacob and Edward is fantastic?  My favorite parts of the series are when Edward and Jacob hang out with each other, and the tent scene totally lived up to my expectations.

Look at us! We are all emotional and angsty!

There are a few things that disappointed me, but they were very minor.  I wasn’t a huge fan of all the extra newborn stuff, but I know it was necessary to move the plot along and explain what was happening without having scene after scene of exposition.  I also wanted more werewolves!!!!  But it could have been a 2-hour movie of nothing but werewolves and I would want more.  I could have done with a few less angsty looks between Bella and well, everybody, but I guess that is to be expected.

I would like to see more wolves please...and why are you wearing a shirt?

Anyway, the movie totally kicked ass and I WILL be seeing it again multiple times.  I hope all of you Twilight fans rush out to see it and I think even some non-Twilight fans might like this one.


I Got My Craft On This Weekend

I have a craft program next month at my library, and since I’ve never done the craft, I figured it’d be a good idea to try it beforehand so I know what I’m doing.  So……here’s my new tote bag!

It’s made from a t-shirt!  I should have taken a picture of it in t-shirt form.  Oh well, you’ll just have to believe me.  The design came from a book called Simply Sublime Bags.  There was NO sewing involved, which is good because I don’t know how to sew.  You just use staples and duct tape!

The book has a ton of other great no-sew or low-sew projects.  My cousin is getting married next weekend, and I found a pattern for a cute black clutch, so I decided to try that one too.

I am SO proud of this!  I can’t believe I made it myself.  It was totally worth the HOURS of work and frustration.  The design’s not especially complicated;  I just couldn’t wrap my head around some of the instructions.  It was another no-sew project – ribbon, duct tape, and staples.  The outside is made out of 3″ black satin ribbon.  When I was done, I glued on black flowers and added a button to keep it closed.

When the flap is open, you can start to see the duct tape.  The inside lining is all duct tape but it’s black and aside from the shiny, you don’t really notice.  Plus, who really looks inside your purse besides you?  Oh, and I almost forgot – there’s a ZIPPER!  You can kind of see it in the above picture.  (It starts on the left.)  To me, a zipper says that this is a REAL purse.

I inherited the craft gene, and I’ve done lots of crafts before – crocheting, cross-stitching, card-making – but never anything like this.  So I think if I can make a purse, you could too!

Nerdgirls, you’ll probably get a chance to see it in person sometime this fall, if not before.  I think it’ll become my fancy purse to use for important events like weddings.  🙂

– Jill

Say Goodbye to the Chubby Girl

Okay, so the past few weekends I have happened to catch bits and pieces of a really cute movie on tv.  It is a total 12 year old girl squealfest called Sleepover.  It is about a regular sleepover that turns into a fight to take the popular girls down.  It is really adorable and when I watched it, I recognized almost everyone in the cast.  Alexa Vega, Jane Lynch, Jeff Garlin, Sam Huntington, Steve Carrell, and Sara Paxton are all in it.  You might not recognize the names, but if you saw their pictures, you would totally know who they were.

Well, to make a long story short, (not really) I looked on Amazon to see how much the DVD cost.  If it was like $7 or something I was totally going to buy it.  Well………well.  I am horrified by what I found when I looked it up.

Here is the cover of the Special Edition DVD:

Ummmmm, hello????  There is something very wrong here.  There are four main characters in the movie, the four girls who attend the sleepover.  There are three of them on the cover.  Sara Paxton (on the far left) is one of the mean girls.  Who’s missing from the cover??  Oh yeah, that’s right, it’s the self-conscious girl who talks about getting made fun of because of her weight and how guys never talk to her.  Wow, that was really awesome of the marketing people to completely leave her off the cover.  She is totally one of my favorite characters in the movie!!

Here is a pic of all four girls.  Look how cute she is!  I love her hair and she totally deserved to be on the cover!!!  At least she gets a guy in the end of the movie!  (sorry, spoiler alert!)

Sometimes I hate the world we live in.


My Two New Favorite Blogs

Recently I’ve heard about two blogs that I quickly added to my Google Reader.  I like them so much that I think you should add them to your reader too.

1)  Forever Young Adult

There are A LOT of things that I love about this blog.  First of all, the blog tagline is “for YA readers who are a little less Y and a little more A.”  That’s me!  The coolest thing about the blog is the “book reports.”  They ROCK.  They all feature these topics:  BFF charm (whether the main character possesses the qualities awesome enough to be your new BFF), Swoonworthy scale (how hot the romance factor is), Talky Talk (what the writing style is like), Bonus Factors (the quick & dirty reasons the book rocks), Relationship Status (the review of the book in terms of a relationship) and Casting Call (who should play these people in a movie adaptation).

I LOVE these topics in each book report.  It’s such a great way to quickly see how the reviewer felt about each book.  I don’t have all the time in the world to read a lengthy review, so these really help me get a quick feel for the book and whether I want to order it or read it.  Here’s an example of a book report on 13 Little Blue Envelopes.  Check out the casting call – dead on for Ginny and how can you not love someone who wants to cast Anthony Stewart Head in ANYTHING?  (Oh, Giles, I love you!)

Oh, and the titles of each book review are hilarious and make me jealous that I haven’t thought of them myself.  My current favorite is “When I Roll into the (Wild Wild West)” for Faithful by Janet Fox, which I really want to read.  I’ve had the Will Smith song stuck into my head for a few days now.  🙂

If you’re lucky when you go to Forever Young Adult, you’ll get the banner for the Peeta vs. Gale great debate.  If not, refresh the page until it shows up.  The guys selected for Peeta and Gale are PERFECT.  Agree/disagree?  Let’s discuss.

2)  Hot Guys Reading Books

Do I really need to say any more?

So what do you think?  Do you already read either of these blogs?  Any other blogs I should be reading?

– Jill

Why I Quit Facebook

A couple of weeks ago I quit facebook.  And I don’t mean that I quit checking it, or made a pledge to myself to limit my time.  I mean I up and deleted (not deactivated) my account.  Now that it’s been over 2 weeks (the grace period), my account is officially gone.  I’m actually relieved that it’s gone.  I always worried that I was putting things that were too personal on my profile, or that someone would post an inappropriate picture of me (I don’t think there are any of these, but you never know).

You all probably remember back a month or so ago when Facebook started getting all weird about it’s privacy settings.  You know, when they kept changing them like everything freaking day, and when they made you link all your interests and favorites?  I really really didn’t like that.  Facebook also didn’t seem to care about my settings.  I kept putting my settings to unsearchable, only viewable to friends, etc.  But Facebook was all like, hey let’s let all these unconnected people be able to search for her and friend her.

CNN had a few articles about people getting upset over Facebook privacy policies that I started reading.  Then I saw some related articles about how hard it was to delete your facebook account.  Surely it wouldn’t be that hard I thought.  So I decided to look around for myself.  I’m a freaking engineer.  I know my way around the internet.  Of course I could figure out how to delete my account.  Oh no, wait.  I couldn’t figure it out.  After a few days of mindlessly clicking on links in the help section of facebook, I finally got ticked off enough to google how to delete my facebook account.  Apparently it is possible to get to the delete section, but it seemed like you’d have to stumble upon it by sheer dumb luck.  The page I had found through google included an automatic link to the delete page.  I was so upset that I couldn’t delete my account on my own that I went ahead and clicked on the link and deleted my facebook right there and then.

I know that about two weeks after I deleted my account, Facebook revamped it’s privacy settings and now everybody is pretty much hunky dory with everything again, but I still can’t get over the fact that they hid their delete page so well.  Deactivation was instantly findable, and I think that Facebook wanted everyone to think that deactivating your account was the same as deleting it.  But it’s not.  If you deactivate, I believe that Facebook gets to hold onto all of your account information.  So if you ever want to get rid of your account too, remember: Delete not deactivate.

I am a bit worried about what will happen when my school reunions roll around (if I decide I actually want to go.  You never know, right?).  Will my classmates decide that all they need to do is make a facebook page (like they did for the 5 year reunion)?  Will they try to get email addresses?  Phone numbers?  I remember who my senior year class officials were, and I am not willing to hedge my bets that they will actually try to do anything beyond facebook.  But on the other hand, I am not worried about keeping in touch with people.  All the people I want to get in touch with, I will get in touch with over email or phone.  And all the ones that care about me will do likewise.  Sure I’ll miss out on things, but I can handle it.

<3, lindsay

P.S.  Please enjoy this lovely video about D&D.  I enjoyed it very much.  Especially the cheetos guy.

Happy Video Roundup!

One of my favorite pasttimes is watching videos on YouTube.  Sadly this is harder now that my internet comes and goes as it pleases.  Aside from silly cat videos and movie trailers, my favorite types of videos are dancing videos!!!  I don’t know what it is, but there is something about seeing people dance that makes me all happy and floaty.  It is probably because I can’t dance at all.

Up first is my dad’s favorite video ever.  If you have ever been in his presence for more than two hours, you have probably seen this video.  He even used it in one of his sermons, which he only reserves for his most favorite pop culture stuff (like Star Wars, Peanuts, and The Wizard of Oz).  I say this, but I love the video almost as much as he does.  It proves that even with people around the world being so different, we can all appreciate a guy dancing like a moron.

Probably most of you have already seen this video (not because of my dad) but because it has like 30 million views.

The next one I discovered while searching for flash mob videos.  I do love a good flash mob!  Even though most of them are organized for commercial purposes (to promote a tv show or something) they fill my little heart with joy.  This one took place in Belgium to promote a new reality show (Ugh!) but it is pitch perfect.  I love how it is mainly kids doing the dancing.  I also love how scared people look when they hear Julie Andrews’ voice at the beginning.  But my favorite part is the little old lady in the hat who is shown a couple times.  At first she is confused, then she is totally rocking out with the dancers.

I love the girl who does the entire dance with a HUGE backpack on.  She is hardcore!  The video also gets bonus points for including the macarena.

The last video is something very amazing and wonderful.  I first found it when it was linked from the IMDB homepage, and then Abby tweeted about it and I couldn’t stop watching it.  I wonder sometimes what would have happened if Newsies had come out now instead of way back in the ’90s.  Musicals with dancing boys are all the rage nowadays.  This actually might have played well as a DCOM (that’s Disney Channel Original Movie, for those who don’t know).  Ah well, it will always have a special place in my heart.

Aaaaah, sometimes I think guys should bring back the little newsie hats and suspenders look.  Any guy looks fetching wearing that ensemble.

Anyway, if you have any favorite dance videos, feel free to share them in the comments.  I better stop at three because it has taken me almost 3 days to put this post together as it is.  Curse you internets!!!


Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Will Blow My Mind!

So the MTV Movie Awards aired on Sunday night and apparently it was all about vampires and werewolves.  They did allow a few precious seconds for the trailer for Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows.  Holy Buckets!!!  Here it is:

So, I have watched this several times (and by several I mean over and over and over again).  These are my quick observations.

1.  Wow, the trio look like grownups.  When did that happen???  Harry looks so freakin’ old!

2.  The fight scene with Ron and Harry looks AWESOME!!!  I’m pretty sure that I would have pulled a Ron if I was forced to camp with a piece of Voldy’s soul for such a long time.

3.  Emma Watson looks like she is once again using her only emotion—on the verge of tears.  But for this movie, it probably works.

4.  So does the scene of Hedwig flying away mean that she will be spared???  Who knows, a girl can hope.

5.  Ummmmm, so this trailer has the Gringott’s dragon in it……does that mean they are going to make it all the way through the Gringott’s scene in the first movie???  That seems like a pretty bold choice.  That would leave nothing left but the Hogwarts stuff right??  It’s been too gosh darn long since I’ve read that book.

6.  This looks amazing!


Why Amber didn’t do the 48-Hour Book Challenge Either

1. Last weekend, I stumbled upon the final episode (well, it was one of the Specials really) of the VICAR OF DIBLEY–MY NEW FAVORITEST SHOW. So I put all the DVDs on hold on at the library when I got to work on Tuesday, and they arrived for me on Friday meaning allllllllll weekend (when I have not been shopping for Velvet ribbon with Mom or playing Kickball with Steve) I have been watching pure loveliness such as this:

***first thing I think about when watching any British show or movie: who was he/she in the Harry Potter films??? In the case of Dibley, it was Dawn French’s voice that caught my attention…She was the Fat Lady!!!

Owen looked awfully familiar, too, although I couldn’t remember so I had to look him up–He was Barty Crouch! Haha, and apparently Cecil will be Kreacher in both Deathly Hallows!

2. Also, I totally forgot about the #48hbc until this week so I felt a little panicked to come up with a reading plan! Books that I would have read if I had done the challenge: Heist Society by Ally Carter, The Westing Game by Ellen Ranskin, and The Magic Thief: Found by Sarah Prineas. I just finished The Agency: A Spy in the House by Y.S. Lee which was EXCELLENT, but Jen already told you that 😉


Two Awesome Books!!

This weekend I didn’t do the 48 Hour Book Challenge, but I did read 5 1/2 books.  And let me tell you, they were some great books (except for one, which totally sucked, but oh well).  I wanted to briefly (hopefully) talk about two of the books that I was lucky enough to pick up at BEA.

First up is Scumble by Ingrid Law.  I hope you all recognize the name Ingrid Law as my BFF who has commented on this very blog before.  I was excited and nervous to read this book because it is a companion book (a fancy word for sequel) to Savvy, which is one of my favorite books of all time.  I always get a little nervous because I worry that an author will mess up all the great things that happened in the first book by writing about the characters (or in this case, their families) again.

As it turns out, I had no cause for worry.  Scumble is both a sequel and a standalone book.  It revolves around Legdgr Kayle and what happens to him after he discovers his savvy.  Ledger is Mibs’ cousin and this book takes place about 8 years after the events of the first book.  Mibs and Will make cameo appearances in the book, but they aren’t really needed because the new characters are so awesome.  Ledger’s savvy is pretty awful.  To put it bluntly, he makes things break, fall apart and fly all over the place.  He has such a problem controlling his power that he is exiled to his Uncle’s ranch for the summer.  I won’t give away anything else because you should already know that this book is completely amazing.  I loved it just as much, if not a little bit more than Savvy.  I got the happy tingly teary-eyed feeling at the end that I only get with books I truly love.  Well done Ms. Law…..keep ’em coming!

The other book I read that I want to rave about is Wendy Mass’ The Candymakers.  She is another of my favorite authors, so yet again, I was a little nervous that my expectations were too high for this book.  But, wow, this is a really fantastic book!  Don’t let the massive size fool you (the ARC is almost 450 pages), it is worth the effort.

I will warn you that when I started reading it I was not impressed.  I read an awful lot of books, so I read them pretty fast.  When I start a new one, I zoom through as fast as I can until something catches my attention and gives me pause.  The beginning of this book reminded me a lot of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.  Four kids get to compete in a competition to create the best new candy.  They get to make their candy at the most wonderful candy factory ever, Life is Sweet.  So the first hundred pages of the book involve a lot of descriptions of the happiest place on earth and it just really made me hungry.  The four kids are Daisy, Miles, Philip, and Logan (who just happens to be the candy factory owner’s son).  The book shifts between different points of view, which Mass has already proven to be a master of (Every Soul a Star).

Well, through Logan’s part I wasn’t all that impressed, nothing really stood out and grabbed me.  Then it shifted to Miles’ perspective and after just 3 pages I was completely thrown for a loop.  What???  Had I missed something important in that first part???  I started to realize this book was more than just the average book so I slowed way down and started to love it.

The book takes place over just a few days, but the writing is so great that I fell in love with all of the characters.  Each kid’s point of view added a completely new layer to the story and the pieces of the puzzle fit together so perfectly that by the end of the book I was on the edge of my seat.  So, I did an extremely poor job of describing the plot, but all you need to know is that the characters are fantastic, the plot is a finely woven patchwork of awesomeness, and you will totally need to eat a chocolate pizza while you read it.  Psssssst:  Where can I get one of those????

So, I wish I could give every one of you a copy of these books right now so you could read them, but Scumble doesn’t come out till August and The Candymakers will come out in October (yikes!).

Anyway, I hope the 48 Hour Book Challenge participants had fun.  I will certainly try to do it next year.  By then I will be living in my mansion with 24 hour fail-proof wireless internet and a Beauty and the Beast style library.


Why I Didn’t do the 48-Hour Book Challenge

I was SO excited for the 48-Hour Book Challenge this year.  I’ve had it marked on my calendar since I heard the date.  Unfortunately, it did not happen for me this year for several reasons…

1)  I’m catsitting this weekend.  Normally, this wouldn’t really affect anything because reading and petting a cat at the same time is pretty nice, but there’s half an hour between my apartment and my friend’s and because of reason #2, I’m not staying there.  This means a lot of time in the car, and I didn’t get any audiobooks from my library.

2)  Family unexpectedly came Friday night.  I had some family come into town Friday night and needed somewhere to stay.  Unfortunately my apartment needed cleaned but I didn’t have time until Friday after work.  So Friday night was a whirlwind and my reading wouldn’t start until Saturday morning.  Still do-able, I know.  But let’s move on to #3.

3)  I’M MENTALLY EXHAUSTED.  Work has been so exhausting this week.  I feel like my brain doesn’t shut off anymore.  Our Summer Library Challenge starts this Monday.  That probably explains enough for all your librarian friends in the blogworld.  We’ve been tying up loose ends involving prizes, and I’ve been spending A LOT of time this week on stuff for the summer teen volunteers.  Let me just say this:  Figuring out a schedule for approx. 50 teens to volunteer every hour the library’s open is kind of difficult.  Throw in actually creating the schedule, letting the teens know, telling staff things they need to know, preparing time cards, etc. etc., I’m tired.  Oh, and I worked yesterday for several hours.

4)  I read a lot last week and am a little burnt out.  Last weekend, I unfortunately did not have any plans, which I’ve concluded is just sad for a 3-day holiday weekend, so I read A LOT.  I finished The Line by Teri Hall (great!), Dark Life by Kat Falls (great!), and Cross My Heart and Hope to Spy by Ally Carter (also great!) and got through about half of The Devil in the White City by Erik Larson (so far, great! 🙂 ).

I think I might tackle a 48-hour book challenge another weekend on my own.  Good luck to all of your readers participating!  I’m enjoying your updates and book reviews!  🙂

– Jill