March 13, 2018

Lately//Winter 2018

The task of writing and posting my "Lately" post for winter 2017-2018 has been on my to-do list forever. Since December, I think. So here I finally am. Just in time for spring! :P (ha)
Let's jump right in. Lately I've been....

Well, that is I will be moving. Very soon. My family is in the chaos of another move yet again. Thankfully it's not from totally opposite ends of the country like last time, just to a different area of our state. Nevertheless, it's a whirlwind of mixed emotions—fear and excitement and doubt and hope. My parents have long wanted to move to this new area we're about to call home. And though I have certain regrets and fears about the whole matter, God's hand has been undoubtedly in this process—so I'm trying my best to trust His plan and not my limited sight. That's all I'll say for now. If I go AWOL from the blogging world, you'll know why! (Although I'm hoping that won't happen.)

~I finished reading the Harry Potter series back  in December. I still want to write a post about that series sometimes. *squints into the hazy, far-distant future* Yup. Sometime. (Suffice to say I LOVED the series and I'd definitely recommend them, as far as your conscience allows for it. I know some people have their doubts regarding the series and that's totally fine. I may share my own thoughts on the matter someday. :))

~I re-read An Old Fashioned Girl by Louisa May Alcott and found afresh how delightful and touching this story is. Even with the antique flavor of a by-gone age, this book contains a heroine that is so relatable. She struggles with so many things we struggle with now-a-days--finding joy and contentment in our day to day life, whether it's at home or work, learning how to build healthy, meaningful relationships, and being the best possible version of yourself that you can be. I just...really love this book. It conveys so many beautiful truths and lessons, without being preachy or moralistic. Though anyone can enjoy it, I think it's an especially inspiring read for us girls, because it deals so much with what we women should aspire to be—in any age. It encouraged and convicted me in so many areas, and I recommend it whole-heartedly.

~Heartless by Marissa Meyer
Yeah, this lived up to its name. Because Marissa Meyer must be heartless to write such a depressing story. It was brilliant and humorous and wonderful (ha).....until. That Happened. And That. And That. Ughhhh. If I ever read it again, I may not read the ending because IT'S SO SAD.
(Guys. Jest is so precious. <3)

~I read Meeting God at Every Turn by Catherine Marshall and WOW. This spoke to my heart, touching on many different topics, but mostly on the topic of trust. Trust for God's plan, His purpose, and His guidance. This book was beautiful. I already knew I love Catherine Marshall's writing, but this book cemented the opinion for me. She has such a way of writing that makes you feel you're reading a personal letter from her, not a book published for millions to read. Please put her on your to-read list, especially this one. It contains so much truth and encouragement.
Food for thought... “A Christian has no business being satisfied with mediocrity. He's supposed to reach for the stars. Why not? He's not on his own anymore. He has God's help now.” from Christy by Catherine Marshall

~Courtesy of a very dear friend (*waves*), I was introduced to George MacDonald's writing this winter, with The Fisherman's Lady and The Marquis' Secret. And I'm quite a fan now. ;) His writing is lyrical and full of God's Truth. I love that real, raw issues are dealt with in the story (very carefully, of course) and shown in the light of God's goodness. The hero never conforms to evil, but he never shys away from confronting it and calling it out, either. (Malcolm, the hero, is totally deserving of a the title of "hero". There are very few fictional heroes that truly embody that word, in every sense of the word. But he totally does.)

(For the record, I've been compiling this list of movies as far back as autumn, not winter. So hang on to your hats, it's going to be quite a list.)

(Also, many of these movies were watched on Clearplay, so I can't vouch for the content of all of them. Please use your own discretion when choosing what to watch, but if you have questions, I'd be happy to answer them. :))

The Finest Hours
This movie was so good. It's based on a true story about the Coast Guard in February 1952, in Massachusetts. I loved the tense excitement of the plot, the romance between Bernie and Miriam, and the determination and bravery of those men—the men on the sinking tanker (especially the engineer) and those who set out to rescue them, despite the opposition of their superiors. To me, it was a story about doing the right thing, no matter what the odds. And it was epic.

(Also, hearing Chris Pine and Holliday Grainger and all the actors put on New England accents for the whole movie was too cool.)

Ray Sybert (Casey Affleck), D. A. Brown (Michael Raymond-James) and the rest of the crew of the SS Pendleton struggle to keep their ship from sinking in Disney's THE FINEST HOURS, the heroic action-thriller presented in Digital 3D(TM) and IMAX (c) 3D based on the extraordinary true story of the most daring rescue in the history of the Coast Guard.

Captain America: Civil War
Guuyyyyyss. Every time I watch a Marvel supehero movie I think "YES. THIS IS THE BEST ONE." But then I watched this one.....and I think this may be the best one. Maybe. I don't know. :P

I have a lot of feels about Marvel that would not fit into this post, so I better save them for another day.

Guardians of the Galaxy 1 &2
GROOT. (That's all I'm going to say for now.) (Also, Rocket Racoon.) (And much. <3)
groot, Marvel, and guardians of the galaxy Bild

Naploeon Dynamite
At the urging of some friends, my family watched this movie and....I'm still not sure what to say. It. Is. Hysterical. But weird. And cringey. Mostly weird. Basically, you should watch it but you may hate me afterwards. :P (But honestly, Anna, you were right. It's ridiculously quotable. ;D)
Image result for napoleon dynamite tina gif
I don't know why this scene cracks me up so much, but it does xD

The Greatest Showman
Short opinion? LOVED IT. Long opinion? Read my review here.

The Last Jedi
*Sigh* This would take much longer to go into than I have time for. Let's just say, there were certain parts I REALLY liked, but on the whole I found the movie much too meandering for my taste. I expected BIG things to happen, especially regarding the characters and the choices they make and the relationships between them all. I feel as if this story is still beginning too much, and how are they ever going to wrap it all up in only one movie???

Poe was epic, though. As usual. Whatever happens, I'm on his side. :P


While You Were Sleeping
Awww, this movie!! This was adorable and funny and just so darn cute. (Also, I may or may not have fell just a little bit in love with Jack in this movie....which is weird and awkward, as he plays Brian Denton in Newsies. :P)

Road to Avonlea
My mom and I are in the middle of watching this show, and all I can say is "where have you been all my life??" This show feels like happiness and childhood mixed together. <3 I absolutely adore it.
Reminds me of Road to Avonlea :)

The Jungle Book
Now THIS was really cool. Yes, granted, it's very different from the original. But I hardly minded, because a) to be honest, The Jungle Book was never one of my favorite Disney movies. And b) I just found this version so exciting and colorful. I really enjoyed it. :) Bill Murray as Baloo was hysterical, and I loved Bagheera. Mowgli was great, too. And though I think it's a little strange that he didn't end up leaving the jungle, I'm glad they didn't have him leave just because he saw a pretty village girl and decided to follow her. I never liked that about the end of the original. :P

(I do  need to re-watch the original, though, to refresh my opinion.)

Pete's Dragon
This movie gets an A+ on the aesthetic. Between the plaid shirts and the towering pines and the varying shades of green, I felt completely immersed in northern wonder and ready to take a road trip to Canada or wherever it is that it's so beautiful. Pete and Elliot were both very cute (also Jack, for that matter) (just sayin') (cough), but my brother and I both agreed that the story was kind of draggy and slow. Still, we enjoyed it.
(And yet the ending made me sob like a baby, I don't know whyyyy)
(Yeah, I do. Because I'm overemotional, that's why. :P)

Petes dragon 2016
Peter Rabbit
Now this I did not expect to enjoy as much as I did! It was hilarious! I loved it. I still am not 100% in approval of the "modern" take on Miss Potter's lovely characters....but it hardly matters, considering how happy I felt walking out of the theater. If you're in doubts about seeing this movie, doubt no more. It's bright and funny and BRITISH. ♥ Go see it. (Then we can talk about the cute animals, the lovely British countryside, the adorable romance, the music...basically everything.)

Thor Ragnorak

The whole plot of Thor and Loki's sister was boring in my opinion. And kind of ridiculous. How many secrets does this family have?? But most of this movie was so hysterically funny that anything that annoyed or bored me didn't really matter. Seeing Thor and Bruce Banner work together was GREAT.  (Tony and the gypsy. xD) And Loki was priceless, per usual. And then there was this scene....
Funny Pictures | Memes | Thor | Hulk

Not much, I'm afraid. Most of my writing-related energy has gone into brainstorming, especially after some tantalizing ideas presented themselves for the characters in the fairytale retelling series I'm planning/writing/editing, etc. But you'll have to wait to find out more..... ;)


This ^^^ is amzing. I only recently started listening to the The Gray Havens, and they have a LOT of good songs, but this one is definitely one of my favorites.


Son of David by Ghost Ship (W O W)

By Your Side by Tenth Avenue North (really encouraging ♥)

Nobody Knows by the Lumineers (I can't decide if this song makes me feel adventurous or sad. :P)

Never Grow Up by Taylor Swift (this is saaaddd)

Newsies: The Broadway Musical Audio (you're welcome ;))

Going to Camp!
This past January, I went to a camp for the first time ever in all of my 19 years. It was a weekend "college and career" camp and I had the company of two friends from church so it wasn't too scary. ;) (All right, I'll admit: I felt a teensy bit homesick by the end of it all, but mostly because I was just so darn tired.)

Despite being exhausted, it was a fantastic weekend. We went tubing in the snow, ice skated late at night, drank cocoa in the dinging hall, among other things. The speaker for our chapel preached a really good message and I can't wait to (hopefully) go again next year.

(Although hopefully it won't be so freezing like it was this time. If I remember correctly, we rarely had temperature above 20 degrees Fahrenheit. :P)
. January . Winter Travel, Adventures & Discoveries

That trusting God isn't something to learn once ~ That whenever my mom scolds me for "wallowing" in my depression over certain issues (because I'm prone to do that lol) I always realize she's right, even if I don't want to hear it at the moment :P ~ That change is okay, even when it hurts ~ That forgiveness is REALLY important and so worth it ~ That just because life has to change, doesn't mean it won't be as wonderful as it was before ~ Being joyful and grateful takes determination

And most importantly, that no matter what changes in my life, Christ is steadfast.
“In Christ Alone" by Owl City // Phone Screen format // Like us on Facebook // Follow us on Instagram @worshipwallpapers

*Sigh*. I guess that's all! I wish I could have gone into more detail on a LOT of the things I talked about in this post, but I really must get this post done with. I'm currently in bed with a cold and tomorrow my family has some tasks to accomplish regarding our move, so I hope I can get better in time to be a more helpful member of the family. haha ;)

Hope you're all doing fantastic and that you're NOT sick like me!! I can't wait for spring at this point....I'm ready for some warm weather. :)

What have you been doing this winter, friends?
Are you looking forward to spring, or do you wish winter would last longer?

February 28, 2018

a story about the sky

I've always struggled with worry. It comes and goes in different forms, sometimes dramatic and looming, sometimes small but constant. Lately I've had to deal with little bursts of worry that explode in my face. I shield myself only to look up and see another one coming.

A lot of things are changing for me right now (I could write about hundred posts about the emotional ups and downs of it all, but hopefully I can do at least one soon) (just about the specific change, not the emotional side, don't worry I won't bore you with that). But through it all one verse I've always loved has given me immense comfort.

Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever.
(Hebrews 13:8)

I have a love/hate relationship with change. I love uncharted, exciting adventures, mixed with tantalizing dreams and plans and challenges.

I hate giving up thing I have loved, whether it be places or people or things that remind me of places and people and eras I can never live over again. (I feel like an old woman sometimes. For goodness sake's, Natalie, you're 19 not 90. You have your whole life ahead of you. :P)

Today, after a morning and early afternoon of feeling tired and worried but bound to accomplish some tedious tasks, I went outside with a cup of tea, my Bible, a book, and a notebook.

Before I did anything, I just sat and breathed in the steam of my tea and looked at the sky. And looked again.

Endless blue, giant clouds carefully shaped into billows and swirls, warm light gilding their edges.

It made my worries feel so small. The sky right above me was so great and glorious—and it was only a patch of the entire great and glorious sky made by an even greater and more glorious Creator.

I read my Bible and prayed and sipped my tea till it grew too cool to enjoy any longer. I felt thankful, looking at the sky. Because my worry will come and go but Jesus is constant. His power beyond anything in this world is constant. His love for me is constant.

And so is His love for you. ♥

February 21, 2018

Six Non-Canon Ships

winterwitch bucky barnes wanda maximoff art edit graphic fanart

Cordy's Lovely Blog Party is still in full swing, guys! We have till the end of February to participate in this fun Valentine's Day themed party, so do hop on over there and check it out. (Oh no! I said hop! I'm as bad as the stores that already have Easter candy out already! *wails*)

Today I want to share five non-canon ships with you.

Five what, you say? Well, I'll try to explain it. In the fandom world, "ships" are used to describe relationships us fans support. For instance, fans of Pride and Prejudice "ship" Darcy and Elizabeth as a couple.

(Make sense? No? Good. Let's move on.)

Non-canon refers to relationships that aren't actually in the story. Basically, it's wishing that  two people in a particular story were a couple, even though they never were. For instance, Mr. Collins and Elizabeth would be a non-canon ship. (PLEASE don't tell me anyone actually ships them....) 

Anyways. If that doesn't make sense, sorry. You'll catch on, trust me.

One more note--thanks to the lovely Miss March, (who can count, it seems ;)) it was recently brought to my attention that I actually included six couples in my last "Five Couples post", not five.  Oops. :/ Thank you for pointing that out, Miss March! But apparently this is a theme with me, because I planned this post to contain FIVE couples, but again came up with six. :P *sigh* Oh well. (At least I actually counted them correctly this time. :P)

In no particular order, here they are...

1) Bucky and Wanda from the Marvel movies

No Vision and Wanda for me. Nope, don't care, Infinity War. :P

Ever since watching Civil War, I decided that Bucky and Wanda was my ship. Because Bucky NEEDS someone and so does Wanda. She's so lost after her brother dies and I just think these two would be perfect for each other. You want a list of reasons? Here you go:

-They're both former Hydra experiments so HELLO common backstories
-She could probably use her powers to heal him
-They both have the same color schemes: red and black
-They've both gone through Very Traumatic Losses

Bonus: They have similar tastes in makeup :P

2) Enjolras and Eponine from Les Miserables

Enjolras and Eponine just SHOULD HAVE BEEN A THING.

Because, after all, Marius had Cosette.  Yes, I get it that Eponine pines after him and gives her life for him and all that jazz, but seriously?? Didn't she even notice the handsome revolutionary leader in the red jacket? (Not to mention, Marius wasn't exactly the sharpest knife in the drawer, just sayin'.)

Also, it would have been great to see Enjolras fall in love with someone other than France and then get a bunch of teasing from the barricade boys about it. You know, things like "who cares about your lonely soul, Enjolras, remember??"

He needed a taste of his own medicine. :P

(PS. I went from having no videos on hand for Enjolras and Eponine to having two after a quick youtube search. I like them both a lot, so here's a link to the second. Honestly, most of my love for the second one is because BBC Robin Hood audio is used.) (!!!!)

3) Finn and Rey from Star Wars
I know I mentioned them in this post, but I had to mention them here, too. I'm intrigued by the different relationship possibilities Star Wars may give us in the next movie, but I STILL SHIP FINN AND REY SO MUCH. They were my favorite thing ever since I saw TFA for the first time and they will be no matter what happens in the end of this trilogy. ♥

All I know if I'm probably going to be disappointed, thus why they're on this list. :P

4) Allan and Kate from BBC Robin Hood
This one's for you, Olivia. ;) But it's also for me too because ALLAN AND KAAAAATE.
I still would like to give the producers of BBC Robin Hood a piece of my mind. Because they had something PERFECT going and then they ruined it and made Kate into the most annoying flibbertigibbet in all of cinema and UGH.

Why why why.

I couldn't find a Allan/Kate video that I liked, so instead you get a video about Allan. But 1:05 to 1:16 has some particularly cute Allan/Kate moments so it works, I guess. *shrugs*

5) Gwaine and Morgana from BBC Merlin
Besides Gwaine's lack of morals (aHERM) I really adore this guy and I think he and Morgana would have been an EPIC couple in BBC's Merlin, especially if their relationship played out somewhat like how this video portrays it. Like, they fell in love when Morgana was still good and then she became evil but he stayed loyal to Arthur and.....and...can't you just imagine an epic showdown between her and Gwaine???

I just really think this would have been awesome. (But BBC likes to ignore awesome possibilities in its tv shows, methinks.)

6) Alf and Laura from Lark Rise to Candleford

Okay, everyone's going to hate me for this, I think. For the record, of Laura's romances, Fisher is my favorite. She should have ended up with him. BUT, since this is a post of non-canon ships, I thought I'd talk about these two. (Because I assume non-canon ships are ones that never happened at all, not romances that didn't end happily.)

So yes. Ever since, like, episode one of Lark Rise to Candleford, I expected Laura and Alf to end up together. They were such good friends! And he liked her! And they were just sweet and were childhood friends and—

Nope. Didn't happen. *sigh*

Do I like Alf and Minnie together? Yes. Do I think it's nice that Alf and Laura were still friends despite not being a couple? Yes. Do I like Laura with Daniel? Last time I watched it, I didn't, but I may change my mind. Does it make sense that Alf and Laura didn't "fit" because of the different lifestyles they chose? Yeah...

Do I still wish Alf and Laura had been a couple? *whispers * Kind of. :P

Do you ship any of the couples I listed?
Who are some of your non-canon ships?