rebecca_in_blue: (trembling hand)
Yesterday was Grandma's deathiversary. At services this evening, the lay leader read her name from the bema as part of the yahrzeit list. That was hard. In recent years, the start of a new year always depresses me, and this didn't help. I have to remind myself that there are still good times to be had. NCIS will be back with new episodes next week, and that's just what I need to distract me from all this funk. (Also at services this evening, I sat in the back and crocheted plarn through the whole thing.)

Below the cut is another list for 2012, of young actress movies that I saw that year. (Last year's list is here.) Once again, I kinda dropped the ball on watching one a month.


Young Actress Movies of 2012 )

And finally, my 2012 in a nutshell: Grandma died. Sable died. We moved. I learned how to crochet with plastic bags. I discovered and became scarily obsessed with the musical Les Miserables. We got Tovah. I spent a week at a wonderful Jewish summer camp. I joined Big Brothers Big Sisters, which I'm proud of myself for, even if the experience hasn't been exactly what I'd expected. I served as a lay leader at my temple. Just think, at this time last year, I had never crocheted with or even heard of “plarn,” and the only song I knew from Les Miserables was “I Dreamed a Dream!” CRAZY!

Also, I probably ate more peanut-butter and jelly sandwiches and bananas in 2012 than I did over the rest of my life combined. And I have no idea why I felt that was noteworthy.

Right now I'm trying to think up something to do with Briana soon. I'm almost starting to feel like I'm banging my head against a wall. Literally all she ever wants to do is go to the mall. I don't know how much more I can take of that place! *grinds teeth*
rebecca_in_blue: (bemused shrug)

Lately I've been putting together a gallery of young actresses in costumes at Halloween events. (There are two major Halloween events in Hollywood, the Dream Halloween Benefit and the Ronald McDonald Halloween Carnival, that a lot of big stars attend.) Tonight I compiled some statistics that I'm posting here for my own reference later, and on the off-chance that anyone who reads this blog might be interested.

My gallery currently consists of 130 photos spanning 13 years (1999-2012) of 98 young actresses in 59 costumes. The cut-off age for this gallery is 20.

The actresses have 88 first names among them: Abigail, Adia, Alexa, Alexandria, Ali, Allisyn, Alyvia, Amanda, Amandla, Amber, Ariana, Ariel, Ashley, Audrey, Ava, Bailee, Bailey, Bella, Brittany, Bryce, Camilla, Camryn, Carly, Christine, Dakota, Danielle, Daphne, Darcy, Daveigh, Debby, Drew, Elle, Elise, Emily, Erin, Fivel, Gracie, Haley, Haylie, Jacqueline, Jadin, Jenna, Jennifer, Joey, Jolie, Kailey, Katherine, Kathryn, Kay, Keana, Kerris, Kiernan, Lauren, Lexi, Lia, Lucy, Mackenzie, Madeline, Madison, Mae, Malyssa, Mary, Meredith, Michelle, Miley, Miranda, Natalie, Nicola, Olivia, Paris, Peyton, Rachael, Rachel, Raini, Raven, Rebecca, Roxy, Ryan, Saige, Sammi, Savannah, Shelbie, Sierra, Taylor, Teala, Temara, Willow, and Zendaya.

The costumes they wear are, in order of popularity:

9 bumblebees: Mackenzie Aladjem, Alexandria DeBerry, Lucy Hale, Roxy King, Camilla Ross, Rebecca Ross, Kiernan Shipka, Fivel Stewart, Lauren Storm
8 pirates: Ashley Gerasimovich, Sammi Hanratty, Taylor Hay, Bryce Hitchcock, Savannah Lathem, Natalie Alyn Lind, Raini Rodriguez, Carly Rose Sonenclar
7 cats: Miranda Cosgrove, Sammi Hanratty, Olivia Lauletta, Ali Lohan, Temara Melek, Kiernan Shipka, Lauren Storm
7 fairies: Daphne Blunt, Savannah Burhoe, Camryn Molnar, Kathryn Newton, Emily Grace Reaves, Brittany Snow, Bella Thorne
7 vampires: Brittany Curran, Alexa Gerasimovich, Katherine McNamara, Amandla Stenerg, Bella Thorne, Michelle Trachtenberg, Keana Texeira
6 witches: Darcy Rose Byrnes, Adia Dinh, Lia Marie Johnson, Laura Dair Owens, Madison Pettis, Carly Rose Sonenclar
4 ballerinas: Haylie Duff, Paris D. Smith, Bella Thorne, and Jolie Vanier.
4 bobby-soxers: Madison Davenport, Beverly Mitchell, Danielle Panabaker, Raini Rodriguez
4 Mad Hatters: Bryce Hitchock, Natalie Alyn Lind, Malyssa Martinez, Mary Mouser
4 princesses: Bailee Madison, Kay Panabaker, Rachel Sibner, Willow Smith
3 Alice in Wonderlands: Dakota Fanning, Alyvia Alyn Lind, Kathryn Newton
3 cheerleaders: Meredith Deane, Teala Dunn, Jennifer Jolliff
3 genies: Amber Barbell, Rachel Fox, Ariel Winter
3 hippies: Daveigh Chase, Madeline Carroll, Joey King
3 Native Americans: Miley Cyrus, Savannah Jayde, Jacqueline Rae Pyles
3 Minnie Mouses: Ryan Newman, Raini Rodriguez, Kailey Swanson
3 Red Riding Hoods: Katherine McNamara, Savannah Paige Rae, Bella Thorne
2 butterflies: Sierra McCormick, Audrey Whitby
2 dolls: Zendaya Coleman, Peyton Roi List
2 flappers: Shelbie Bruce, Kay Panabaker
2 rabbits: Elise Lathem, Haley Pullos
2 Snow Whites: Amanda Burhoe, Dakota Fanning
2 Spider-Mans: Rachael Kathryn Bell, Lexi DiStafano
2 twins from The Shining: Allisyn Ashley Arm, Audrey Whitby
2 Wonder Women: Emily Evan Rae, Haylie Duff.
And one of each of the following: Bat Girl, Belle, biker, Little Bo-Peep, bride, Catwoman, Cheshire Cat, Cleopatra, crayon, Cruella de Vil, dalmatian, Ginger Spice, goth, Hit-Girl, Hogwarts student, homemaker, leopard, magician, Marilyn Monroe, Mario, marshmallow, Mary Poppins, peacock, pilgrim, Poison Ivy, prom queen, Queen of Hearts, rapper, Robin, scarecrow, Scarlett O'Hara, Strawberry Shortcake, Supergirl, White Queen.


The youngest actresses in the gallery are two 4-year-olds: Elle Fanning as Little Bo-Peep, and Alyvia Alyn Lind as Alice in Wonderland.
The oldest actresses are three 20-year-olds: Haylie Duff as a ballerina and Wonder Woman, Kay Panabaker as a princess, and Lauren Storm as a bumblebee and a cat.

A few of my favorites
. How cute are they?

Madison Davenport, 11, as a bobby-soxer and Mackenzie Aladjem, 9, as a bumblebee.


Kiernan Shipka, 11, as a cat and Daveigh Chase, 13, as a hippie.

 
Sammi Hanratty, 12, as a pirate and Savannah Paige Rae, 9, as Red Riding Hood.

rebecca_in_blue: (pursed lips)
For absolutely no reason, I've decided to learn what each state has on its state quarter (which is proving to be fairly easy) and to sing "99 Luft Balloons" in German (which is quite difficult). Don't ask me why I decide to do these things!

I'm finally getting around to posting the list I made of the most-played songs on my iPod for 2011. The one I made for 2010 is back here. It's interesting that the only one song that appears on both years' list is "Sugar, We're Going Down," by Fall-Out Boy. I didn't realize I liked it that much. It's also interesting (or kinda scary?) that in 2010, my most-played song only had a playcount of 69. This year... well, I've definitely gone past that.


Most-played songs on Rebecca's iPod (2011): Recently-released )

And...

Most-played songs on Rebecca's iPod (2011): Oldies & classics )

I think the iPod lists have more vivid memories attached to them than any others. And here's one more list for 2011 - child actress movies I saw that year. I sorta dropped the ball on that one, but about halfway through the year, I made the goal to watch one child actress movie a month.

Movie list under here! )

On Sara's art calendar, I'm currently looking at The Titan's Goblet, an 1833 oil painting by Thomas Cole. It's a very cool and dramatic surrealist landscape.
rebecca_in_blue: (bemused shrug)

LiveJournal made some changes to its Rich Text Editor this week, and I'm having a lot of trouble getting used to it. Even coding my entries by hand in HTML is difficult, and I'm a pro at HTML. As an experiment to see if I still know how to make cuts, I'm posting two lists of songs. Here's the most random assortment of music you've ever seen!

List #1: One-word song titles from Rebecca's iTunes library )



List #2: One-word song titles from Rebecca's iTunes library, people's names )

rebecca_in_blue: (subtle sigh)

Yesterday started out as an amazing day. I went to my first Torah study at the temple, which was very enjoyable and educational. I have met some amazing people at the temple, and I'm touched by how far they've gone to make me feel welcome there. Afterwards, I burned a CD for Mom that she'd wanted, then I went for a long, wonderful bike ride (and collected cans; I need the money). It was warm and sunny out, perfect bike riding weather. But yesterday night at work was not pleasant, so the day started out awesome and ended badly. I'm still looking for a new job. A cold front arrived over night, and all day today has been freezing cold, windy and rainy. Looking out the window this afternoon, I honestly could not believe that I went bike riding just yesterday in short sleeves and sunglasses. The hell!

My favorite song of the moment is Firework, by Katy Perry. If you haven't heard it already, go to YouTube and listen to it. Its lyrics are an inspiring, powerful message about accepting and believing in yourself. It's also the first song I added to my iPod in 2011. Speaking of which:

About halfway through 2010, I started keeping a list of songs I had added to my iPod that year. Shortly after midnight on New Year's Eve, I went through the list recorded the playcount for each song. I know I have no life, but it was a fun thing to do. So, here's the musical recount for 2010. The second list is old songs I added to my iPod, and the first list is new music. I was rather impressed with how many songs there were for that list, because I usually don't listen to new music. Rebecca is not a hip person. But no doubt you already knew that, didn't you?



Most-Played New Songs of 2010. And the winner is: "With you, I'd run through a storm in my best dress, fearless." )

And...

Most-Played New (to my iPod) Songs of 2010. And the winner is: "Brighter than the noonday sun, and all your sheep awaking." )
rebecca_in_blue: (pursed lips)

A new NCIS episode comes on this Tuesday, and it's the first of five new episodes in a row that all lead up to the two-hour season finale! I'm so excited that I've been telling everyone I know (Grandma! Josh! Random people!) and soon I'm going to make a list of all the new episodes, their press release summaries, and tape it to our refrigerator. I hope I'll be able to watch them all and won't be stuck at work.

A teacher came into our store this evening to print some papers for a novel unit he was teaching on Wait Till Helen Comes. When I saw the book on the counter (he had the exact same copy, with the exact same cover art, as the one Sara and I had back in the '90s) I actually started exclaiming, "Oh, my God, Wait Till Helen Comes! That book scared the crap out of me!"

Inspired by a similar post my sister made, a list of notable injuries I've suffered in my life:

  1. Fell off my bike onto pinecones. I was about six and riding that pink "Puppy Luv" bike I got for Christmas 1990 or '91. (I don't remember having any bike before that, so it must've been my first.) I fell off down the corner from our house and started to stagger home, crying, but some teenage guys offered me a ride in their truck. I remember thinking that since they were wearing Catholic high school uniforms, it was probably okay, so I said yes and one of them lifted me and my bike into the flatbed. When I got home and told Mom -- an incredibly stupid thing to do, in retrospect -- she got really pissed, and I got really pissed back at her because I was all hurt and bleeding and she was just yelling about not taking rides from strangers. See #8.
  2. Got stabbed in the foot with a Batmobile toy. I was about eight. Adam and I were playing some game in his room when I jumped off his bed and landed barefoot on his damn Batmobile toy. You'd think an 8-year-old jumping on some cheap plastic toy would do more damage to the toy than the kid, right? Wrong. Maybe because I was chronically underweight as a kid (I probably weighed about forty pounds when this happened) but I didn't even dent the thing. Instead, the wing on the back of the Batmobile (Adam's toy looked a little like this, only smaller, of course, and not so bad-ass) stabbed me in the foot. I wince just writing about this, it hurt so bad. I remember crying and limping to the bathroom and trying to bandage it up by myself. I didn't tell Mom until about twenty minutes after it happened, because I was scared she'd yell at me for getting blood all over the bathroom. I couldn't even wear shoes on that foot for a week or so.
  3. Fell face-forward onto the sidewalk. I was about nine. I was at the corner down from our house (underneath a bunch of pine trees), coming home from Grandma's. Ben was a ways ahead of me, and I was running toward him, about to call him some insulting name I'd just thought of, when I tripped and fell. Sara had been running right behind me (trying to stop me from yelling at Ben) and she tripped over me and landed on top of me. I got scabs and stuff all over my face and everyone said I looked like Quasimodo.
  4. Fell off my swing. This happened numerous times, from about 1992-2000. Once I fell flat on my back and thought I was going to puke (circa 1992). Once I fell flat on my butt and it hurt to sit down for days. Once I fell and slid on my arm and had a brush burn from my elbow to armpit. Once I fell on my leg, borrowed a cane from Grandma, and limped around for a week (circa 1998). Once I landed on my hands and knees in such a way that my right middle finger slammed right into a live oak tree root -- we had a lot of those in our backyard -- so hard that it got shorter. (See #7. Now both my middle fingers are deformed.) Twice my pinky fingernail was ripped clean off. But the craziest thing is, I kept getting back up on that swing.
  5. Burned my arm on my old lamp. I was fourteen and in eighth grade, and I had that really cool blue lamp that I just loved. One night I was lying on the floor doing my homework and it fell forward onto my arm and left a perfectly circular burn. The next day at school (middle school, one of the worst I've ever attended), the kid who sat in front of me in social studies saw it and asked me who'd done it. When I said "nobody," he asked if I'd done it to myself. Writing that might make him sound concerned, but actually he was just a jackhole, like most of the kids in that school.
  6. A brush-burn on my leg, courtesy of Sable. I was walking him home from Grandma's, and for some reason I didn't have his leash and had to use a rope. At one point he pulled on it too hard, and it burned my hands and wrapped around my leg. It left this thin line almost halfway around my leg that never bled but just oozed puss for weeks and looked really gross.
  7. Bent my finger back. It was around 2004, and I was at mom's house, trying to kill a roach on the hallway floor. I sprayed a lot of Raid on it, but it wouldn't die, so I stomped on it. My foot slipped in all the Raid, I tried to put out a hand to catch myself, and my left middle finger hit the wall and got bent back really far. I honestly think I saw stars. When I told Dad, he said, "As Saddam will you, the poisonous gases need a little time to work." (God, I miss his humor.) That finger is now permanently crooked from where it hit the wall. See #4.
  8. Unleased a fountain of blood from my thumb. It was April 2006, and I was at mom's house for Spring Break. I was cutting the tag off a new pair of jeans when the scissors slipped and cut my thumb. It was a very tiny cut, but deep and right along my thumb nail, and it was truly amazing how much it bled. The blood was practically spurting out. I remember that Adam was taking a shower (as always) and when I hollered at him to get out because I needed to get to every inch of gauze we had in the bathroom, Mom yelled at me and told me to leave Adam alone. Some things never change. See #1.
rebecca_in_blue: (raised eyebrows)

It was raining when I woke up this morning and rained for most of the day, but it finally seems to be slacking off now, so I think I'll go for a bike ride soon. I haven't been in so long, and when I can't stretch my legs properly I feel so bloated and lazy.

In the meantime, my birthday is three weeks from today, so I threw together a list of things I want.

  • A mousepad of The Beatles.
  • A cool cup to keep my pencils in (can also be of The Beatles).
  • A cool set of salt and pepper shakers. These are easy to find at flea markets and garage sales. They just can't be anything too cute like angels or cats.
  • Interesting magnets for our refrigerator. Crossed out because I realized I can buy these at my store. We actually sell some pretty neat magnets.
  • A Calvin & Hobbes book that neither Sara nor I has yet. I would really like Attack of the Deranged Mutant Killer Monster Snow Goons or Homicidal Psycho Jungle Cat.
  • Paper Moon (1973) on DVD. Of course. Love this movie. Although Ryan O'Neal being such a scumbag is starting to marr it a little for me.
  • Cinderella (1965) on DVD. The best version of Cinderella ever! Heh heh.
  • Dream a World, a 1995 hardback reading textbook published by MacMillian/McGraw-Hill. From the information I've been able to dig up, this is my old 8th grade reading textbook. I'm not entirely sure because I haven't been able to find a picture of its cover. I think I would recognize it if I saw it. **
  • OR Just Past the Possible, 1995 reading textbook, MacMillan-McGraw-Hill; OR Widening Circles, 1983 reading textbook, Harcourt School Publishers. Again, I'm not entirely sure, but I think these were my 6th and 3rd grade textbooks.
  • The Poems & Rhymes Volume of Childcraft: The How & Why Library. When we were kids, we had the complete set of Childcraft books, but over the years, they've dwindled down to just a few. This is the one I miss the most, and I still can't believe we lost it! There have been several editions of Childcraft, and I'm not sure if they've changed over the years, but our set was the one published on 1976, and Poems & Rhymes was Volume 1, out of 15. We still have Volume 2: Stories & Fables; Volume 3: Children Everywhere; Volume 11: Make & Do; and Volume 15: Guide for Parents. And there are probably a few more still at Mom's house.

** Let me explain: I know it's weird, but I love finding old textbooks, especially for subjects I liked. In February 2007, I almost literally jumped for joy when I found my old 7th grade reading textbook in the for-sale aisle at the library. And since then, I've been dying to get my 8th grade one, too. My 6th grade one I don't want as much, because I don't remember it very well (my class didn't get them until the end of the year, because there weren't enough books to go around -- yeah, I went to a pretty shitty middle school).

Of course, I realize the last three things on that list will probably be a case of using my birthday money to buy them myself, which is fine.

rebecca_in_blue: (subtle sigh)

My Book Awards for 2008 are finished! They didn't come out quite the way I expected this year. I didn't read a lot in 2008, but that also means I didn't read a lot of bad books, which eliminated a lot of dead weight and made it pretty hard to choose the worst in each category. Eventually I had to get rid of the Worst Overall category, something I'd never before, because nothing I read was really that bad.

Award-Winning Books of 2008 )



All Books of 2008 )

rebecca_in_blue: (happy smile)

I've kept lists of all the new books I've read for every year since 2003, and in 2008, I kept a list of all the new movies I saw as well. I had two movie-watching goals: to see as many classic old films as I could, and as many movies with notable young actress performances as I could. I did very well on the first goal (mostly thanks to the mediatheque in Villers-Cotterets) but not so well on the second.

The first list: Prepare to be impressed!



All Movies of 2008 )

And for my own reference, I also wrote short reviews for some of the movies I saw with child actresses. Note: I will probably send this list to the owners of a child actress website I work with, and it might not be of interest to most people who reads this blog.

Akeelah and the Bee )

Atonement )


Divorce His, Divorce Hers )

Firestarter )

Lawn Dogs )

Leon )

A Little Princess )

Little Women )

The Nativity Story )

Nim's Island )

The original list (what I wanted to see and why I wanted to see it) is here.
rebecca_in_blue: (red riding hood)

We've got our heating on one week and the air conditioner on the next. Typical Louisiana winter. Our apartment has a heater in the wall between the living room and the bedroom. The problem is that the bedroom is a lot smaller, so by the time it's uncomfortably warm in there, it's still chilly in the living room. It got cold the other night, and Sara allowed herself, and more importantly, Sable to sit shivering the living room because she didn't know how to work the heater! It made me feel like I was living with Adam again.

I'm very glad that I didn't have to work the morning of Black Friday. The holiday season is supposed to be about peace and goodwill, and I hate the way that message always seems to get lost in the frenzied consumerism. I cannot stand holiday commercials; the "buy, buy, buy!" message is overwhelming. I did work on Black Friday afternoon, but by then things had calmed down. Our store really doesn't do that much business for Christmas anyway; I mean, we're busier, yes, but not nearly as much as other retailers. (Back-to-school is our Christmas.)

I called in sick on Black Saturday because I caught a stomach bug and felt so nauseous that I had to make myself vomit, something I'd never done before. I haven't done any holiday shopping yet. So far the only person who I'm buying for who has posted a list is Sara, and even with her list, I'm not sure what to get her. I haven't been able to think of many things that I want, either. But here is a list, just in case anyone who reads this wants to get me something.

Money. Because I can always use it and always need it.
A teddy bear. For Sara, so she will STOP. STEALING. MINE.
A calendar for 2009. I would really like one of Paris/France.
Curtains. (Crossed out because we got some!) We have two windows in the bedroom, side by side, that I would like curtains for because they face east and onto the street, so they let in a lot of light in the mornings.
Any of the following movies: Just Around the Corner, Shirley Temple; Cinderella, Lesley Ann Warren; Paper Moon, Tatum O'Neal; A Little Princess, Liesel Matthews; The Secret Garden, Kate Maberly; Corrina, Corrina, Tina Majorino. I would prefer DVDs, except for Just Around the Corner, which I would like in the colorized VHS clamshell edition released by Fox in the 1990s. A Little Princess and The Secret Garden are avaiable as a double feature on one DVD.

For dinner tonight, I'm trying to make myself scalloped potatoes. I actually miss the kind I used to get in the lycee cantine. Scalloped potatoes, green beans, French fries, and steak haches were about the only foods from the cantine that I enjoyed eating.

rebecca_in_blue: (worried eyes)

We're still house-sitting. I can now play Auld Lang Syne, Thine Be the Glory, Winnie-the-Pooh, and a large part of Feed the Birds on my aunt and uncle's piano. (I play in one-handed style best described as "plinking" or "crappy.") Is it wrong that out of all the cool stuff in my aunt and uncle's house, the only thing I'm really tempted to steal is the albuterol inhaler I found in the bathroom? I've taken a few puffs on it while I've been here, since they have two cats, and the big black one, Izzy, is prone to lie on your chest when you're asleep, and having cats sleep on her is not good for Rebecca's asthma. Anyway, it was indescribably great to have real asthma medication again, rather than breathing myself out of attacks, which is what I've done since my albuterol ran out.

A French actress named Victoire Thivisol, whom most people have never heard of but whom I love, has just released her first movie in seven years! (She only had one tiny TV role between then and now.) As excited as I am that she's acting again, I'm also hella frustrated at the timing of this movie's release. Why couldn't it have come out three months ago, when I could have seen it in Paris? Who knows when I'll get to see it here. But I will see it. A list for future reference...

Films with notable child actress performances that Rebecca has seen in 2008: Atonement, Divorce His - Divorce Hers, Firestarter, (The Ghost and Mrs. Muir,) A Little Princess, Little Women, Nim's Island, Paper Moon.

And speaking of movies, Sara and Adam convinced me to see The Dark Knight with them last week. Frankly, I was disappointed. I've never been a big fan of action, adventure, or comic book movies (the only exceptions are the first two X-Men movies, which I loved), but I've heard so much praise about this one that I expected to really be blown away. I mean, has anyone else seen those promos that say, "A lightning bolt is about to rip into summer movies!" and "The Dark Knight soars on the wings of imagination!"? I guess for me it was a victim of its own hype. It wouldn't have been as big if Heath Ledger hadn't died.

Oh yeah, and I've got a job interview on Monday morning for a job that I might actually have a chance of getting.

rebecca_in_blue: (raised eyebrows)

In the last 48 hours, Rebecca has....

  • Bought three goat cheese pizzas and eaten two. Also had Heather take pictures of me eating the pizza. (Yeah, we all know what I’m going to miss.)
  • Bought a chocolate bar, a bag of nougat (it's a little different from what we know as nougat in the US; it's little white cubes of dough with peanuts in it, and damn, is it delicious), and two île flottant desserts (these are basically meringue with English cream and caramel sauce – so good). I’m determined to stuff as many French desserts as I can into my body during my last few days.
  • Donated the English-language books that I can’t take back with me to the médiathèque.
  • Made three visits to the bank to arrange to have my money transferred into my American bank account. The third time I came in, I said, “Okay, this is the last time, really.” The woman who sat at the front desk all day said, “Oh, but we’ve missed you.”
The left side of my neck has been very stiff lately. I thought I might have slept on it at an odd angle, but there also seems to be something wrong with the left side of my jaw, which is sore, and my left ear, which feels funny, like I have a head cold or something. The teeth and gums on the bottom right side of my mouth are also sore, but I think this is from my last appointment to the dentist. It wasn’t really painful this time, but there was a lot of pressure on my mouth.

A list for future reference:
rebecca_in_blue: (subtle sigh)
I put together one more list for the new year before classes start tomorrow. This is is a list of movies I would like to see in 2008, although I doubt I'll be able to see all of them, since many of them are rare, foreign, old, or all three.

rebecca_in_blue: (excited grin)
As I said before, this is the most exciting thing about the new year for me -- giving out my book awards! (Rebecca just keeps getting geekier, doesn't she?) Anyway, for those of you who don't know, I have kept lists of every book I've read since 2003, and at the end of each year, I create awards in different categories. The categories vary somewhat from year to year; 2007 will be the last year for the school-required category, and there was actually very little to choose from, since only two classes actually required me to read books last semester (my two English classes were screenwriting and poetry, so I didn't read any books for those). Anyway, here is the roundup for 2007!

Award-Winning Books of 2007 )

All Books of 2007 )

P.S. If the anchorman on CNN International says, "You've never seen an American election like this before!" one more time, I think I may have to put a brick through the TV.
rebecca_in_blue: (Sable & Me)
For me, the best thing about a new year is giving out my book awards! But I think my book awards for 2007 might be harder than usual. For previous years, there have been obvious choices for Best and Worst Overall, but this year, no books really stand out as obvious choices for anything. I am going to look over my 2007 list very carefully and try to post the awards in a few days. Until then, I’m posting my New Year’s Resolutions, in the hope that if everybody knows what they are, I’ll feel more obliged to actually do them.
  • This year, stick to your resolutions past the first two weeks of January.
  • Be more open to new experiences, and try things that you’ve never done before. Look into learning to cook or knit or some other productive activity that you could do in your spare time.
  • Write more – in your paper journal, your LiveJournal, and in your fiction. Look into participating in NaNoWriMo in November.
  • Make a serious and conscious effort to get along with all members of your family, even the ones you piss you off.
  • Sometime this year, buy five different members of your family a nice gift for no reason at all.
  • Exercise more, and start riding your bike regularly again. I fell out of this habit after I moved away from Baton Rouge and it’s beautiful bike path on top of the Mississippi River levy.
  • Don’t be so cheap. I’ve gotten better at this while I’ve been in France, but I still have a long way to go before I feel comfortable spending large amounts of money (and for me, large amounts are anything over ten dollars).
  • If you can, find some volunteer program to get involved with in your spare time.
  • Spend less time on the Internet, and more specifically, spend less time on YouTube. I think this one is going to be very difficult, because I’ve gotten so spoiled here in France. The lycée’s computer room is open 24/7, and we assisstants have almost 24/7 access to it.
  • Address people by their names more often. This feels a little awkward, because usually we only use people’s names when we want their attention. But I heard on John Tesh’s radio show that using people’s names when you don’t need to – Thanks, Marlene. See you later, Heather. – makes them feel acknowledged and appreciated.
  • At no time, during 2008 and for the rest of your life, never again get your hair cut in a style that looks like a combination of Hillary Clinton and Madame C. It doesn't matter how many relatives tell you it looks good, or how many wigs Locks of Love can make out your old hair. Just don't do it.
rebecca_in_blue: (Default)

Yesterday night I made up a little game to play with my iPod. I set it on random order and wrote down the first 25 songs that played. Then I listened to these songs and wrote down my favorite lyric from each one. Then I tried to rearrange these lyrics so that they told a story. Remember, Rebecca has very few English books to read and the only English channel she gets is CNN International, so she has to keep herself entertained somehow.

Anyway, the list below is the end result. You probably won't be able to see a story, but if you know the title of the song that any of these lyrics come from, let me know in comments. I think that Sara and Adam might know all 25 between them.

I will be mailing a few souvenirs of my trip to Belgium home tomorrow.

rebecca_in_blue: (bemused shrug)

Today was another day I spent walking around the town. Did I mention that an elderly couple who keeps chickens and geese lives just down the street from the school? I can sometimes hear their roosters crowing in the morning. They also have a German Shepherd named Leo (pronounced Lay-O); I know his name because he spends most of his time barking and one of his owners is always yelling at him to stop. Today I found the town's park, a war memorial, and train station. I'm hoping to go there this week and buy a ticket for Amiens, where there's a mandatory training day on October 1. After that, I'm told, I'll spend about a week observing classes before I start teaching myself. I still find the idea very scary. These students are uncomfortably close to my own age – I'm sure it won't take them long to figure out I'm really one of them.

And my adventures with French dining still continue. Today for dinner I microwaved a can of beef ravioli, and it didn't taste much like the Chef Boyardee brand, which is good, because I ate so many cans of that during my four years of college that I may never eat it again. So far the supermarket food has been pretty tasty. And I finally tried some of Marcel Proust's little madelines. They tasted a lot like angel food cake.

Sara gave me a copy of this really wonderful book, The Dogs of Babel, just before I left. The main character, Paul, is a linguistics professor who plays a lot of different word games, his favorite being to make as many words as you can out of a person's name. I got bored last night and gave it a try. My first and last names can form a surprising number of words; tell me in comments if you think of any new ones, although I'm pretty sure I've exhausted all the possibilities.

rebecca_in_blue: (dozing off)

At Sara’s insistence, I gave my iPod a name, Holly Boulon (don’t ask why – it’s a joke that only Sara and I get). Although I’ve also given names to my truck (Sharon Pearl) and my bike (Clochette), I usually disapprove of naming inanimate objects because I feel it promotes the materialism of our society.

 

A few days ago, I came across an iPod quiz. You set your iPod to play songs in random order and click to a new song for the answer to each question.

 

rebecca_in_blue: (bemused shrug)

At Sara’s suggestion, I have compiled a best and worst list of my college professors. Here goes!

BEST

1. Brager (French). I hated Brager immediately, but by the end of the semester, my feelings had changed completely, and I was actually didn’t want his class to be over. He was probably the hardest French professor I ever had, but I learned more from him than from anyone else.

2. Lowe (English). Even when they were on really boring readings, Lowe’s lectures were always interesting. He also took a lot of time to actually get to know his students, which I really appreciated. With his pin-striped suits and his thick Southern accent, Lowe can only be described as charming.

3. Yeager (French). So many of my French professors are French, so it felt like a breath of fresh air when I realized Yeager was American. Because he had to learn French, like his students did, he knew how difficult it could be, and he was much more understanding than most French professors.

4. Anselmo (French). Anselmo was probably my funnest professor. He was so enthusiastic and energetic, and he loved letting us play games (like French Scrabble) to help us learn. I’m also grateful that I was in Anselmo’s class when Dad died. He gave me all the time I needed to catch up.

5. McGuire (English). Very friendly and approachable, McGuire knew exactly how to make a class of scared freshman feel at ease. More importantly, she knew how to challenge us and make us better writers. I think she retired shortly after I was in her class, which is a shame.

WORST

1. The French Snob (English). He was French and taught English, and he was easily my most arrogant professor. He offended or condescended to every student in class. When he passed out an essay he had written, his grammar and logic were so poor that I would’ve guessed it had been written by a 10-year-old.

2. The American Snob (English). I think this snob cared less about his students than any other professor. He never expected any quality work from them, and many of the students in my class certainly obliged. He was too eager to put a label on a story rather than take the time to understand it.

3. TIE. Uncle Ben (African-American Studies). I think senility had taken over this old man’s mind. I know next to nothing about African-American Studies, but I could’ve taught the class better than he did. He felt it necessary to explain that slaves were slaves because they weren’t paid for their work.

3. TIE. The Pervert (French). I don’t think I’d go so far as to call this pointless man a professor. He didn’t seem to understand that being a professor meant actually teaching your students, not cancelling all your classes. Even on the rare occasion that he actually held class, I still never learned anything from him.

4. The Drunkard (French). He easily gave the most boring lectures of any of my professors, and his slurred speech often crossed the line from mind-numbingly boring to incoherent. He acted like a two-year-old and threw temper tantrums whenever students didn’t follow his directions down to the letter.

5. The Robot (English). She treated her students like kindergarteners who had never written an essay before. She also expected us to lecture ourselves; her only contribution to class discussions was, “Hm.” No matter how insightful or ignorant a comment a student might make, her only response was, “Hm.”

rebecca_in_blue: (excited grin)

I usually keep lists of all the books I read, not all the movies I watched, but in 2006, I did both. I saw more movies than usual in 2006, partly because I was keeping this list but also because, for the last few months of the year, I had access to HBO and my own personal TV (both for the first time in my life).

Warning: Reeeeally long list behind this cut. )

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