Friday, November 29, 2013

Lessons Learned From...The Catching Fire Movie

If you haven't seen the new Hunger Games movie, don't worry, I don't thiiiink I'm going to spoil it for you...especially if you read the books. In which case, don't complain--you already know what's going to happen.

This is my attempt at trying to blog more frequently, so I'm going to try to do a "Lessons Learned From..." series. We'll see how it goes.

First up is Catching Fire. Oh my. Here are the lessons I learned from it:

1.  Tearing up comes naturally when Jennifer Lawrence is onscreen being emotionally distressed.

2.  Wearing a mockingjay necklace to the movie is totally cool.

2b.  Until you walk out after the movie and a line of people is there staring at you as you leave.

3.  Peeta is, and always will be, the obvious choice. At least to me. (He bakes, he's caring. Only problem=he keeps almost dying, but, I mean, everyone has their flaws.)

4.  Stories are almost (almost) always better when characters tragically die. It pulls you in.

5.  The word "catnip" will never sound cool, no matter how many times Liam Hemsworth says it.

6.  Even shallow people have deep feelings. *Oh, Effie*

7.  Sometimes making friends comes easiest when you don't really want to make friends.

8.  Keep people that are close to you in the loop.

9.  Keeping people close to you doesn't always mean they won't get hurt.

10.  There is always a bigger picture. Your plan is only a tiny part of that bigger picture, and sometimes, it's not even in the bigger picture. It's like, your plan is right outside the force field that is the bigger picture, and you don't know about it until you shoot a kink in it and a plane comes down in the hole you shot in the bigger picture and takes you away and you wake up and then someone tells you the bigger picture.

Phew...did that one make sense?

Cool promo from interwebs

Also, Catching Fire is just a really good movie. Go see it while you have the chance!

Thursday, November 28, 2013

Thankful Thursday

Well, would you look at that? It's Thanksgiving. That means it's only, what, like three weeks away from Christmas break beginning? For that, I am thankful.

Speaking of thankful, why don't I tell you some other things I am thankful for this year?

First, of course, I've gotta be thankful for my Caleb. He's great, he's thoughtful, he's clever, he's more than I could ever deserve.
Also, he is pretty.
Then, also of course, I'm thankful for my sweet niece. She's our family's miracle baby and has grown quite large over the almost-first-year of her life.

On to less mushy things now.

I am thankful for:
  • the college church group I get to be a part of
  • finally having a smart phone
  • my photojournalism class
  •  learning how to make banana pudding (tonight!)
  • my own puppy and my parents' puppy being great cuddle buddies
  • my grandparents having a stock of (now-vintage) clothes that I fit into
  • friends who actually enjoy thrift shopping with me
  • almost being done with college
  • flannel
  • the ability to read
  • snapchat (honestly never thought I'd say that, but it keeps me in contact with friends in a hilarious way
  • Doctor Who and the countless hours Caleb and I have spent watching it
  • a billion other things, like trees, and lakes, and paper, and skype, and the list could go on and on

RFC fall retreat

3 years together!

Books books books
I'm just glad to be here, I guess. I'm glad I'm where I am, even if I'm sometimes sad while I'm there. It's a nice life.

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Dating Isn't Disney

Guys, I can tell you right now that this post is so not Raven.

There is an epidemic that has swept the female nation, and it's nothing new. Girls think that they are entitled to...get this...a Disney movie relationship.

Which is funny, because the last time I checked, nearly every Disney movie involved the guy lying to the girl, or having anger issues, or being super shallow...but I digress. That's not my point.

I recently saw a post on Pinterest about Disney first dates -- Aladdin took Jasmine on a magic carpet ride, some princesses got to dance outdoors or at a ball, Ariel and Eric and Eugene and Rapunzel went on a boat ride -- and then at the bottom of the photo set, there was a picture of a repulsed girl and a boy in a movie theater with the caption "Get creative guys the standards are high."

This is funny, don't get me wrong. But the problem is that I really think girls feel this way. Girls really think that relationships should be like the movies. The guy should always be the one changing for the girl, the guy should be the one who is in the wrong and the girl will always be right, or the guy should always save the girl from the messes she gets in to.

I've got a surprise for y'all...that's wrong!

A relationship is a two-way street. The girl doesn't get to stay stuck in her ways and make the guy change. It has to be a give-and-take. Thinking that you are fine the way you are doesn't mean that you're correct. It means you probably have that plank in your eye. A relationship sometimes seems to be all about change -- changing to meet each other's needs, to help each other grow, to keep each other from temptations.

Relationships are about realizing that you aren't always right, even if you are older/more mature/smarter/or whatever other excuse you have. The point of a relationship isn't to be right all the time, it's about putting someone else's needs before your own. Let's pretend you are arguing about whose turn it is to buy dinner. (A lame example, but it's the best I can think of right now.) He says it's her turn and she says it's his. The relationship shouldn't be about trying to back track and see who bought the last meal. It should be about going ahead and saying you'll get the meal, even if you are 110% positive you got it last time too.

And finally, perhaps most relative to the post to which I earlier referred, who ever said that guys had to be the romantic and creative ones in the relationship? Who and what even defines romantic or creative in terms of dates for you? If your answer is "Disney" or "movies" you ought to rethink your individuality. YOU are the only person who should tell you what romantic is, and what creative is. Not some corporation that caters to the desires of young females who believe that happiness is finding a prince to woo you with his looks.

My first date with my now-fiance began at Arby's and ended at a movie theater. And yeah, maybe that isn't "creative" like going on a magic carpet ride or being woken up by a kiss because I was poisoned by an apple. But he asked me where I wanted to go, and that's where I told him I wanted to go (much to his surprise.) And at that point, as it was only our first date, he did not know what kind of activities I liked, but he knew that I thought movies were okay, and he took me to the movies.

Do you know what? I thought it was romantic and creative enough. Because dangit, there was a guy willing to dish out some money so that I could have a nice night. Later dates got more creative and romantic, of course, because he learned what I liked and didn't like. That doesn't happen on a first date, ladies.

So, just remember, romantic only means what you think it means. Not what Disney and other movies tell you it means.

Let's play a game called "Let's be honest" real quick.
Let's be honest...
   if you woke up to a guy kissing you that you didn't know...would you really be cool with that?
   if a guy that you didn't know very well took you into the woods so that you could dance...would that not freak you out at first?
   if a guy lied to you for a long time and then took you flying at like 80 miles an hour with no you really think you'd be able to sing a romantic song during it, and would you not be like, gagging from lack of oxygen?
   if a guy locked you up and told you you could only eat when he ate and you couldn't see your dad ever again, do you really think you'd be like, oh, he gave me a sparkly dress, I'll fall in love with him?
   if a guy took time out of his day and money out of his bank to take you to a movie that, most likely, you wanted to see, would you not be happy?

Please excuse the rant-ish sentiments here, but I feel that this is something many young ladies need to hear.