Sunday, October 31, 2010

Happy Halloween!

This is really late... if I was a little more prepared, I would have come here before trick-or-treating started and then I could tell everyone to be safe and not talk to stranger and stuff like that. But I didn't. I hope everyone was safe any way.
I decided to post pictures of my pumpkin (all four sides) both in the day time and when they're lit. I rather like these picture montages. It makes my posts a little bit shorter.
NaNoWriMo starts tomorrow! Or, tonight at midnight, if you're planning on being an overachiever (I'm certainly not. I like my sleep, thank you very much!). If you know (and are willing to share) what is your NaNoWriMo topic? I'm just curious. I won't steal anything. Either way, good luck, you crazy writing fiends!


"Alas, Poor Yorick... I Chewed Him Well..."

Last night, I went to my school's play-- Zombie Hamlet. It was really interesting... the hearts of the zombies were water balloons and in order to really kill the zombie, you had to squish their "hearts." Not only was this an interesting take on Shakespeare's 'Hamlet,' but it was also very messy and it was completely amazing! More so because I knew what was going on and what they were talking about even with the fancy language.

Any way, I thought I would make a blog post about this. I don't think I have any followers from my school, but this is dedicated to everyone involved if you should happen to stumble upon this post. Amazing work!


Friday, October 29, 2010


Getting a notification from the library that I have seven books on hold and seven more on the way is like waking up on Christmas Day and finding out that the tooth fairy really does exist-- it's the best feeling ever!

A Review of 'The River' by Mary Jane Beaufrand

"Veronica Severence feels cut off from the world. Forced to move from the city to rural Oregon with her parents, she is haunted by loneliness and the chilling sounds of the Santiam, the river that runs through her backyard.

Through the fog of isolation, Ronnie finds herself becoming close with Karen, a young girl whom she babysits. But when she discovers Karen's body on the banks of the Santiam, Ronnie feels compelled to uncover the truth.

As she becomes increasingly obsessed with solving the mystery of Karen's death, Ronnie is led deeper and deeper into the woods surrounding the river and to the dark secret hidden within its midst.

The River is a darkly atmospheric story of murder, isolation, obsession, and deadly secrets that will keep you on the edge of your seat until the very last page."

I finished this book last night in the wee hours of morning (11:00pm). Throughout the last few nights of reading, a few things have bothered me about this book:

1. The spelling mistakes. There were so many! Some words we missing letters, some sentences were missing entire words... it was grammar freak's worst nightmare! (Actually, this is a complete exaggeration, I'm completely positive that there are worse spellers out there). I had more of a rant written down (I draft these posts, you know), but I'm not going to include the rest, because you'll probably hate me.

2. Some of the pieces of the story felt arbitrary. For example, when a character named Keith comes up to Ronnie and her friend Gretchen and says that Gretchen should host a party to make Ronnie feel better-- distract her at the very least. I stopped reading when I got to that part and then I read it again because I couldn't help but think, "What?!" I felt like there wasn't anything leading up to this moment. The party scene felt thrown in. I can just imagine someone saying something along the lines of , "Well, all of the great books have drunken teenage party scenes, so let's add one here!" Parties don't solve all of our problems. In the book and in real life. Also, Keith just felt like a random character to me because he came in once early in the book and he wasn't that great. He barely said anything. But as you read on, he becomes a bigger part.

3. Veronica Severence and Ronnie are the same person. As I was reading, I wasn't aware of this. So when I read 'Veronica,' I'm just thinking, "Who the heck is she?" Now I know. I felt a little stupid that I didn't make the connection. Maybe it was my fault, but it felt like there wasn't anything indicating that these two names belonged to the same person. Ronnie's parents called her Ronnie, her friends called her Ronnie... I can't remember a single time when Ronnie told someone she didn't know that her name was Veronica Severence (isn't that what you do when you're trying to be formal and polite to someone that you don't know?).

That's enough negativity. I usually have glowing reports for my reviews. Even though these things bother me, there were still some nice things about this book.

Overall, I liked the writing style of the author. Her descriptions provided imagery and I even cringed outwardly a few times-- a rarity in itself. I usually cringe with any mention of needles. There were needles, there were other instances too.

One thing you should know is that this whole story revolves around meth. But it's not obvious in the beginning (that would actually be pretty dumb just to give everyone the answer like that... the story would have to be arranged differently to accommodate that). There are signs in the middle of the books, but you wouldn't know that unless you knew the symptoms that meth users show. Pay attention to Gretchen. That's my hint to you. Also, I do believe that rhymed.

This book was okay. I probably won't go out to the bookstore and buy it, but it was a decent read. I don't feel like my time was wasted. I actually wanted to get through it, because I was enjoying it.

Another warning to you, if you're sensitive to reading about drug use, I would not recommend that you pick this up.

Thanks for reading!


P.S. If you have any recommendations or if you have something that you're on the fence about reading, I'm all ears.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Zombies and Owl Costumes

This will be one of those rare posts where I don't put a picture. I just thought that I'd make a quick update.

I had a great trip to Duluth! I'm still trying to put a video together (I've encountered some difficulties, but I'm trying to figure out how to get around them). I have pieces of videos and some pictures, so we're all set for when things decide to start working.

I'm still working on my political children's picture book. I'm happy with the way that the pictures are turning out. As soon as they're done, I'll try to remember to scan a few selections to show you. As for the writing, I have to admit that this isn't the greatest thing I've ever written. The characters are unoriginal, the story itself is completely boring. It's the facts and methods that are only remotely interesting. Honestly, I wouldn't read that to any fourth grader I babysit. Hopefully, it'll be good enough to get a good grade though.

Tomorrow, my school debuts their production of 'Zombie Hamlet.' To advertise and get people to come, the cast went down into the commons (also known as our lunch room) and they started doing Michael Jackson's 'Thriller' dance-- which was really cool!

I'm sad that I won't get to see it opening night... I'm supposed to do this stupid ACT prep thing... sort of like the SAT thing I was doing a couple weeks ago, but a test with a different name. That means that I won't get to go with my friend and we can't dress up as zombies and get fake blood everywhere...

At least we still have Harry Potter to look forward to :) Rosemary and I want to dress up for that too. Rosemary has claimed Voldemort and then I'm going to dress up as Hedwig. If anyone has any ideas as to how one would dress up as an owl, I'm all ears (er, eyes).

Thanks for reading!


Thursday, October 21, 2010


Guys! It's almost November! If you would like to join in the craziness, there's still time! Click here if you absolutely want to do this (or if you want to know more). I have set my word count goal to 30,000 words. I've written that much before, but it was a while ago, so I'm really out of practice. Throughout the month of November, I will force myself to write 1,000 words a day! To all of those that are embarking on this quest, I salute you and wish you luck.

I have also made a decision to make another video over this long weekend. I'm going on another adventure, so it'll definitely be more interesting than the last video I did. I might even go outside! Oh my goodness that's unthinkable!

I must go and prepare now. I will leave you to wander the blog, make a decision on NaNoWriMo, and/or just go back to what you were doing. Either way, have a great week(end)!


P.S. Just because I will constantly be writing next month doesn't mean I'm going to let this go to the way side. I'll try and update on the weekends in November. But they might not be as long (good thing? Bad thing? I don't know...).

Movie Time! 'Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire'

When Harry Potter’s name emerges from the Goblet of Fire, he becomes a competitor in a grueling battle for glory among three wizarding schools—the Triwizard Tournament. But since Harry never submitted his name for the Tournament, who did? Now Harry must confront a deadly dragon, fierce water demons (We Harry Potter nerds call them Grindylows and Merpeople) and an enchanted maze only to find himself in the cruel grasp of He Who Must Not Be Named. In this fourth film adaptation of J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter series, everything changes as Harry, Ron, and Hermione leave childhood forever and take on challenges greater than anything they could have imagined.

So I’ve been re-watching the Harry Potter movies that I own lately. One of my favorites is this very movie.

The books are so much better than the movies, let me tell you. But here’s why I love this movie so much:

Reason One: The different magical creatures!

Yeah, there have been creatures in the other movies, but we have never been exposed to the movie’s interpretation of a Grindylow (I’ll leave a picture, because I’m terrible at explaining things… particularly when they’re not my creation). Mer-people have never made an appearance in the movies (and I don’t think they ever will again, if my memory serves me well). We also get to see a gigantic dragon! A Hungarian Horntail. The only other time I can think of a dragon being in the films was in Sorcerer’s Stone, but even then, I can’t check to see if it’s there. Either way, it would have been a baby or in a box.

Merpeople (person) ^

Grindylow ^

Reason Two: The Triwizard Tournament!

It’s really exciting! Three tasks that most of us would never think or want to compete in. The dragon is just a beast—they fly all around the castle, so get a good feel of what the school grounds look like. The underwater task was especially interesting. Mostly if you’ve seen the behind the scenes clips of how they did this. There are four tributes (one for each champion) that are put into an enchanted sleep and placed underwater to be “rescued.” The people they put underwater were constructed replicas of the actors that represented the people at the bottom of the lake. The actors that played the champions earned their Diver certificates because they were underwater for so long (not at once, cumulative hours). Then Harry had to grow gills so that he could breathe! The maze was just insane. It could move when it wanted to and close up the pathways. People are being controlled by the Imperius curse (one of the Unforgiveable Curses).

It’s just an amazing movie. I’ve watched it about four hundred times J

I shall leave you now! I have a children’s book about positive and negative ads to write! Perhaps I’ll scan some pictures for you, if I have time. In the meantime, have a good rest of the week everyone!


Wednesday, October 20, 2010

An Experiment With Video-Blogging!

If you hear many clicks and beeps, you're not going nuts. That's just the crappy quality you're hearing.

The Trebuchet that that Stranger Above Spoke Of!
I have taken a few pages out of a couple books today... one out of Wheezy Waiter's and the Vlogbrother's books because of the style the video is in (although, I do blink... several times...) and also Hyperbole and a Half's book because of the pictures I made on MS Paint (although hers are ten time better and more creative... they also illustrate funny anecdotes of hers!).

Sorry for the weird post! I'll choose one medium to tell you stuff in next time! If you have a preference, please share!

Monday, October 18, 2010

Movie Time! 'Les Choristes'

In this gentle French drama from first-time director Christophe Barratier, music teacher Clément Mathieu (Gerard Jugnot) lands a job at a boys’ boarding school populated by delinquents and orphans—and run by a martinet headmaster (François Berleand). Sensing potential in the rambunctious ruffians, Mathieu forms a choir to rein in his charges through the transforming power of song, even at the probable cost of his career.”

One of my favorite French teachers showed this movie to our class about two years ago. I instantly fell in love! I only recently remembered the title, and I put it on the Netflix list. As I watched—but more importantly, listened—to the movie, I was entranced by the haunting and angelic voices of all of these boys.

If you rent this movie and you don’t happen to speak fluent French (I certainly don’t), not to worry, there are subtitles! That way you can get the story and the chills from the music of the movie (I’m looking onto my notes where I initially wrote this post and I wrote ‘musique’ instead of ‘music’… oops J

I don’t really have much time, so I’ll leave you with this. Now, I’m off to welcome back my mumzy from New York and I’m also off to build a trebuchet because, once again, I’ve lost track of time… Until next time!


Sunday, October 17, 2010

A Review of 'Dreamland' by Sarah Dessen

Wake up, Caitlin…

Ever since she started going out with Rogerson Biscoe, Caitlin seems to have fallen into a semiconscious dreamland where nothing is quite real. Rogerson is different from anyone Caitlin has ever known. He’s magnetic. He’s compelling. He’s dangerous. Being with him makes Caitlin forget about everything else—her missing sister, her withdrawn mother, her lackluster life But what happens when being with Rogerson becomes a larger problem than being without him?

For me, Sarah Dessen novels are touch and go—you like them or you don’t. This one felt different because of the abuse that goes on. I haven’t read very many Sarah Dessen novels, but of the ones that I have read, it was either love between the girl’s mom and step-dad or something about wanting to be with a guy that they can’t have. Sure, they all had their moment of reckoning, but nothing like this.

It was so powerful because Caitlin was not only trapped on the outside, with Rogerson keeping tabs on her at all times and getting angry when she was even a little bit late, but also on the inside. I found it interesting towards the end when even her thoughts were consumed by Rogerson. She would skip class just so she wouldn’t be late to meet him and then maybe there was a chance that he wouldn’t get mad and hit her. When she knew she was going to be late, the adrenalin kicked in and she panicked because she knew what was coming. These were the difficult parts to read.

All through the book, you can’t help but think “Come on, Caitlin! Get a grip!” even though you know nothing can be changed now, since this is all printed up and spread throughout the country (the world?).

I thoroughly enjoyed this book. It’s powerful and it’s a Siamese twin on your emotions (hmm… I might have to re-think that metaphor… that sounded better in my head…).

Have a good rest of the weekend, everyone!


Saturday, October 16, 2010

Busy Nerdfighting

We went on an adventure today. Mall of America!
The first place we went was the place that sold bean bag chairs-- hint, hint, I would totally sleep on one in college! They were so darn comfy!
Another place we went to was Rainbow, a clothes place (because my fashionista sister and her friend were along). It had been jammed with more clothing than I ever remembered being there. It was like a jungle-- everywhere you turned, there was one more piece of that environment. Some of it reminded me of the Devil's Snare in Harry Potter; you really had to work to get through it all. There was nary a pathway to take to get back to the front door!
When we left Rainbow, we went over to the balcony. There was a crap-ton of people there! My sister's friend told us that there was this band from Nickelodeon called Big Time Rush that was coming to play. As we moved about the mall, all we could hear were pre-pubescent children screaming and shouting when these guys came on stage. We ducked into the Barnes and Noble, which just happened to be right behind the stage. It was horrible. When I went up to buy the books that I found, the cashier had to yell to tell me how much I owed and to ask if I had a Barnes and Noble membership. He even went through this entire explanation of what it would do for me and what I would have to do to get it, even though he didn't really need to... I definitely wasn't interested at the time.

Three levels of insanity!
I even got a picture of one of them (I don't know who they are, nor am I interested in learning their name) before the security guard told us to keep moving, because we technically weren't part of the crowd watching.
I also wrote my first Nerdfighter notes! I made three of them, one to go in each of John Green's books. They all say 'DFTBA Nerdfighters!' in case you can't read them.
I have seen so many videos of other Nerdfighters who went to their local Barnes and Noble, Borders, or Half-Price Books and they brought notes along to put in John Green's books. Every time I watched one of those YouTube videos, I decided that I wanted to do this sometime.

I will definitely do this again, but the next time I'll have longer notes to put in the books. I just went to the teen section to pick something new and exciting (or something I had already read before) and then I found John Green's books and I remembered all of those videos that I watched. I panicked, because I didn't think I had a pen or paper, but I did in fact have a pen, and I found an empty envelope that I scribbled on and tore up for the notes. If anyone finds these notes (there's one note in the 'Looking for Alaska,' 'Paper Towns,' and 'An Abundance of Katherine's,' books) let me know! They're in the Mall of America Barnes and Noble!



P.S. Sadie Hawkins was so much fun! We did a square dance and waltzed twice. We also went on a hayride where we got to see the big dipper-- it was huge! It was like it wanted to be seen! It was really cool!

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Project(s) For Awesome 2.0

Hello everyone!

I have this mini idea. Two actually. Both I’ve mentioned to some people before, but not necessarily here. I just though I could voice them and then everyone here can tell me if I’m nuts for taking on these projects.

Idea Number One: Learn to do one new thing every month over the course of 2011.

I started making a little and a few people were nice enough to give me a few suggestions. I’m still open for suggestions, by the way.

Idea Number Two: Create a How-To Book over the summer.

It certainly won’t be something that’ll go into print. It’ll just be something personal. If I actually follow through on this project (and I really want to) I could post a few screen-shots. I want it to include recipes that I’ve tried and been successful in making, activities that I didn’t know how to do before… well, basically what I’m doing here. This blog will be a good tool to have when it comes to keeping track of new things.

I’ve also though of yet another project just by writing this. You know how I made a bazillion sock monkeys a few months ago? I kind of want to do something with this new skill (if that’s what you really want to call it). I don’t know… maybe I could make them for people and donate them to hospitals or gather donations and give them to charity… I don’t have all of the details worked out just yet, but what do you think?

Also! I just had another idea while thinking up that idea (do you see a trend here?). I wanted to do this over the summer, but I was too lazy and I never got around to it. I wanted to take pictures all summer long (which I did) and then make a book out of all of those pictures. It's not a scrapbook, but it kind of is.... it's a crossbreed!

Let me know guys. I love comments!


P.S. Sadie's is in two days and I'm so freaking excited!!!

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Shannicus (Also Know As the 100th Post!!)

Hurray! I've created 100 posts! How exciting!

Well, it might not be too exciting for you, but it's awfully exciting for this guy, right here!

Enjoy this wonderful MS Paint Picture of the reasons why I love my sister!


Derniere Danse

Here it is!

There is so much wrong with this video... while I was at school editing this, I found out that it didn't match up with the verses that the pictures were supposed to correspond with. That's okay. That was the least of my worries. When I got home and uploaded it to YouTube, I was really excited. The synchronization issue wasn't enough to get me down. I started to play it on my computer and it was incredibly blurry. Also, some of my edits (I'm sure I edited everything that I could) didn't adhere to the exported version. I have the Ken Burns effect (this really weird zoom-in feature that I really, really wish wasn't automatically put into pictures) in really inconvenient places.

Other than those things, I'm pretty happy with the final product. I'm going to try and go into the Mac Lab during lunch one day and fix the things that went awry. Then I'll re-upload it and share it with you again! For now, here it is (er, up there).

P.S. I looked at it again, and the grainy-ness seems to have improved ever so slightly. It's better than nothing, I guess.

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Amateur Hour: Apple Cinnamon Muffins!

Hurray! Another recipe!
Setting Up: What Kind of Food Items?
2 cups of All-Purpose flour
1/2 cup of white sugar
3 teaspoons of baking POWDER
1/2 teaspoon of salt
3/4 cups of apple juice/cider
1/3 cup of vegetable or olive oil
1 egg
2-3 teaspoons of ground cinnamon
2-4 apple peeled, cored, and finely diced (the number depends on the size of the apples being used. In the recipe I made, I used four, because the apples were tiny).
Setting Up: What Sort of Equipment?
1 mixing bowl
Measuring cups
Measuring spoons
1 Knife
1 Peeler
1 Spatula
Cheese grater (optional)

The Steps:
1. Preheat your over to 400 degrees Fahrenheit

2. The recipe I followed told me to add all of the dry ingredients (flour, baking powder, sugar, cinnamon, and salt), mix them together, then in a separate bowl, add of the wet ingredients (apples, egg, juice, oil). Finally, you can mix them together. I, however, am horrible at following directions and did this, which seemed to work just as well:

Combine all of the ingredients together and mix well until everything is moist and covered.
We didn't have any already ground cinnamon, but we had cinnamon sugar, so I used that and then used the cheese grater to grind up one of the sticks of cinnamon that we had lying around.
Your batter should look a little something like this once it's all mixed together (and put in the muffin tin)

3. Fill each muffin place 2/3 of the way full (or a little more, if you're awesome). Once your oven is preheated, put your muffins in the oven and bake them for 18-20 minutes (use the toothpick technique, if you think of it, to make sure that they're done).
Your finished product should look a little something like the picture above!

Okay, so tonight there was a special event. We'll call it "Halloween for grown-ups," because I don't know who reads this and I don't want to corrupt the minds of the young just yet. But maybe you already know what this is, in which case, this might be amusing. It involves everyone that is attending to dress up as some sort of zombie. Here's my dad with all of his make-up and gore on:
Happy Halloween! Be safe, no matter what your age! And watch out for all of those zombies, vampires, and werewolves. There's always a few of them running around...


Friday, October 8, 2010

All Sorts of Exciting Things Going On!

Today is just a day of accomplishment! I went outside and took these pictures of my dad's garden, and then compiled them on an MS Paint page! Granted, it's not the best one out there, but I figured out how to do it, so I get a point!

While we're at it, let's go through the week...

I took my driver's test on Tuesday. I wasn't terribly nervous on the way there. When my mom and I got to the DMV, I started to get just a little edgy-- more so from anticipation than from nervousness. It was okay until I got to a little spot like this:

Okay, so you’re that little red car on the bottom in lane three. The Driving Test Administrator tells you to turn left. Which lane do you have to get into?

If you said, “Go to lane one!” you’re absolutely correct! Do you want to know what I did? That’s right. I stayed in lane three… stupid, stupid… I knew I did something wrong, but I knew it after I did that something stupid. Oh well.

Do you want to know something though? I’m kind of glad that I didn’t pass the first time. I was talking to my dad that night when I got home, and he was saying that more people should fail their first time (or something like that). That way there would be fewer horrible drivers out on the roads endangering other people. So I guess for now, I’m one of those slightly dangerous drivers, and I should be prevented from driving by myself (for now) by keeping my permit. My new date is November 11, so hopefully everything goes just swimmingly then! I know what I did wrong, so now I can work on those things.

That same Tuesday, we started a project in French class. Our job is to go to the Mac lab (the computer lab filled with Mac computers) and make a music video to a French song in iMovie. I can tell you what song I’m making a music video for. I can also tell you what kind of music video. Did this last statement confuse you ever so slightly? Never fear. Answers are on their way. My song is ‘Dernière Danse’ by Kyo (they are absolutely amazing!) and my music video is going to be in the style of a Stop-Motion film.

I’ve never done a Stop-Motion film before. I now realize what a huge endeavor I am pursuing. I will tell you why. Since I haven’t started taking pictures yet, I was merely experimenting with how exactly I would accomplish this project. I did a few Google searches and found out how to start. The article was quite helpful. If you’re interested in trying this yourself, click here to get an idea as to how!

Any way, I did the math while in the computer lab. I wanted to know how much work was going to be involved in this. Each picture that I take is going to last .1 (one tenth) of a second. ‘Dernière Danse’ lasts for 3:49. That’s 60+60+49 which equals 169 seconds. Time ten, that’s 1,690 pictures. Hmm… I think I did my math wrong and added another minute, which put me to 2,290 pictures. Both are quite a daunting number of pictures to take, but the second number that I got is actually quite a relief! I’m really quite excited. I have to get everything done by Tuesday so that I can put all of those pictures in iMovie and then my French teacher can help me export it to QuickTime. Since it’ll be in QuickTime, I’ll try and put it on my jump drive so that I can come home, upload it to YouTube (because the school district bans YouTube and all things awesome), then I can put my finished project up on this blog for your viewing pleasure! Now we have something to look forward to (or not… whatever applies!).

I got Sadie Hawkins tickets this week! It was really a relief. They tend to run out pretty quickly if you’re not careful and get a move on. But Jack and I have them and we’re all set for another fun time! It’s next Friday, and we (along with everyone else that’s going) are pretty darn excited!

This week was also my friend Teo’s birthday! To celebrate, I made him enormous cupcakes (so big that the batter I had could only make about seven or eight of them as opposed to 12 standard sized ones). There was just one teeny-tiny problem: Bike to School Day just happened to occur on the same day. There was no way that I was missing out on getting one of those little green stickers that say, ‘I Biked,’ so I put the cupcakes in a food transportation unit and put them in my basket on the front of my bike. Everything was fine. They seemed to stick to the pan in their wonderful, sticky, deliciousness. As I soon found out, those poor little cupcakes weren’t invincible… I went over one uneven part of the sidewalk and they all fell upon each other. It was the most sad thing that I had seen all day… and the day had just started… Teo still liked the cupcakes, but I felt bad that I couldn’t get them to unstuck from each other without messing them up further.

I finished my PSAT/SAT prep class! Now I just have to sign up somewhere so I can put that newly acquired knowledge to the test!

This weekend, I’ll be working on my Stop-Motion video, reading a little, recuperating from my cold (this thing is killing me… I’m a bit of a Zombie right now because I’m so tired and I can’t breathe… complaining over…). I’ve also found a recipe for apple muffins, so I’m going to wash my hands really, really well and gargle in Lysol, then I’m going to attempt to make them. But of course, that all depends on how everything else is going.

So now, I’ll leave you with some wonderful pictures that I took before the sun went down today. It was a beautiful day today. It got to be 85 degrees Fahrenheit—in October!

Have a good weekend everyone!


P.S. I also have a concert next week on Thursday! If I know you personally, and you happen to be in town and are interested, send me an email and I'll be happy to give you details!

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Another Lovely Weekend!

This weekend, my friend Avery invited me to go to an event that she had helped put on. It was an anti-racism/segregation/discrimination rally at one of the parks near my house. I invited Jack to go with me. I texted Avery to make sure that the event was public. It turns out that I understood what she told me the day before wrong. You had to be on the list to get in. Since my sister, Shannon, wasn't going, Jack took Shannon's invite. We joked around and called him 'Shannon' a couple times :)
It was a group of ten teenagers plus a few adults that put on this event. They all got up and said short speeches (some were prepared, others were said on the spot. But everyone said something).
Brother Ali (a rapper) was there as well to talk to us about discrimination and racism. He also rapped a few of his songs from his CDs. I had never heard of him before I came, but it was pretty cool to see. After Brother Ali had finished, we had an open mic where anyone could get up and tell their stories, rap, or do slam poetry. It was very cool. I wouldn't have expected some of the people to get up and do that. I didn't know everyone of course, but like humans do, I made a few minor judgments. This just goes to show that you can't judge a book by its cover!
My neighbors planted a magnolia try between their house and ours. I think it's supposed to sprout white flowers, which will be very beautiful when spring comes around.
I found this tag on the tree. It's so true!
The chickens next door seemed to be in a fairly good mood. When I went over to say 'hi!' they were busy clucking away at everything.
It was a beautiful day today. It was nice to have a window open. It's good to do that, because once the temperatures hit thirty degrees (maybe even forty) it'll be time to close the windows for a good three or four months.
People are getting ready for Halloween!
It was nice enough today where I could walk outside without shoes, but still cold enough where I had to wear my fluffy socks if I didn't want to put shoes on. I have an idea to spiff up the sidewalk next time I want to take pictures of my feet, but I'll have to do that when the sun is high in the sky.

My family's side yard.

Have a beautiful week everyone!