Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Frabjous Finalities {May 2016}


Okay, okay. I'm good now.

So I obviously can't keep up with anything? Because I completely failed to post on Thursday and still have yet to answer some comments from like three weeks ago. #worstbloggerever Also, it's now the LAST DAY OF MAY (I could have at least had some warning *glares at calendar*), and I just started this post last night. :P

Now that I have made known to the world how terrible I am at blogging, let's get on to the May edition of Frabjous Finalities!


Oh, life. You clearly derive all your pleasure from confusing me. I mean, seriously. Could you possibly be a little more consistent? BECAUSE YOU KEEP CONFUZZLING MY POOR BRAIN.

Ahem. In case you didn't catch on yet, life has been a bit...confusing. (Wow, that was enlightening. I'm so helpful sometimes. *slow clap*) One moment, it's plodding along like a turtle with crutches, the next it's racing past like a cheetah with roller blades. (DO NOT ASK.) I just wish it would decide on a steady pace, y'know?

The month opened up with May the Fourth Be with You Day and Cinco de Mayo celebrations. Leia hairstyles and tacos were present. (I'm so cultured. XD) On Friday, I had my violin recital. Luckily, I didn't die; but I did suffer a few heart problems that may never be resolved.


The following week, I lived it up with my mom and sister. We had a girls' day...which sort of turned into a girls' two days, but psssh, technicalities. We visited our favorite used bookstore (much to my pocket book's chagrin), had milkshakes, watched a movie, and ate out for breakfast. It was so much fun hanging out with my fam. <3

Wonder of all wonders, I finished geometry the following week.  *dances*


It took three hours, many tears, and much insanity; but I was honestly just relieved to be done. Sorry, all you mathematic geniuses, but geometry and I just aren't the best of buds. I can honestly say I'm glad this class is history. (HA! I just realized the genius of that sentence. Too bad it's not actually a history class. XD)

May wrapped up with the National Spelling Bee. I watch it every year on TV (or live, if I'm fortunate enough to go) because I'm such a word nerd. We also had some family come in and spend Memorial Day with us. Ice cream and hot dogs were had. *is drooling now because fooood*


Four books in total. Not too bad, considering I had another crazy-busy month.

  • Veiled Rose was the first book I read. And quite honestly, I couldn't get into it at all. I liked Heartless all right, and I had high hopes for its sequel. But I just didn't click with it. The writing was beautiful, don't get me wrong; but I couldn't connect with the characters and the plot was much too slow for my taste. Perhaps it wasn't the right time for me to read it. (There are certain times for certain books, in my opinion.) After this, I fell into a big reading slump which I couldn't get out of until near the end of the month.

  • The second book I delved into in May was Through the Looking Glass. Delightful story. I liked Alice's Adventures in Wonderland more, but I still loved the sequel. Again, I was in a reading slump so I progressed through this book much slower than usual. I should definitely reread it sometime when I'm in a better "mood."
I don't actually own this copy, but isn't
the cover beautiful?

  • Oh, man. I certainly owe my friends Laura and Tracey a HUGE thank you for introducing me to this series. House of Dark Shadows and Watcher in the Woods are the first two books in the Dreamhouse Kings series, and they essentially got me out of my reading slump. The writing may not be especially brilliant, but gosh, the books are still incredible. I've been craving some good action/adventure, and these certainly did the trick. There's creepiness, humor, and did I mention time-travel? IT'S BASICALLY AMAZING. I honestly don't what to tell you guys except READ THESE BOOKS POSTHASTE. Just...don't read them at night. XD (And make sure you have the next book in the series handy because you'll need it.)



~ Star Wars: The Force Awakens (2015): Awk, okay, SO MUCH HAPPINESS. This is probably my favorite Star Wars film--no joke. I've been waiting impatiently since January to watch it again. And you know what? I love it so much that I watched it twice this month. IT'S THAT GOOD. I believe I liked it even better after I watched it again. Just asdghdlfjhfl. (But it also kinda wrecks my feels...D:)


~ The Jungle Book (2016): This is the aforementioned movie I watched with my mom and sister. I thought it would be good, but I was really blown away by it in theaters. I've never really been a huge fan of the Disney cartoon from the '60s, but this. This is fantabulous. I seriously loved it way more than I thought I would. Stunning animation, enjoyable characters, heart-pumping action, general epicness...yup, it was great.


~ Zootopia (2016): Hehe. Um...this movie was a bit of a disappointment. There was just so much...stuff in it. Going into it, I knew there were some things I wasn't really happy about. But I was just surprised by how much stuff there was. I mean, the characters were cute, and I liked the plot okay. (Though some things were a bit predictable.) But I was really disappointed in Disney for some of the things they unnecessarily added. It's a kid's movie, and I wasn't pleased with some of the content.

I gotta admit, though. They are pretty darn cute.

~ Ella Enchanted (2004): Words cannot convey how much I disliked this film. Basically, there was no reason for this film to exist. It's one and a half hours of awful. Too bad I didn't know that before we chose this as the movie for our family movie night. :P (Whoa, rereading that makes me feel super harsh. If you like this movie, please know that I'm not trying to insult you.)


~ THIS. THIS PIECE IS EVERYTHING. The Piano Guys are one of my favorite music groups, and their latest arrangement is nothing short of breathtaking. Plus, it's The Jungle Book so...

~ For those of you who know me really well, you know that I love Enchanted. So imagine my delight when I discovered this little piece of adorableness. It's a cover of "That's How You Know," which is essentially the cutest song in existence. Watch it and judge for yourselves.

~ This parody by Studio C. For some reason, I'm really obsessed with the Hunger Games songs they made up. I haven't even read the books or watched the movies so...yeah, they probably spoiled some things. Oh well. I still will watch them shamelessly. *smiles*


A comprehensive list of all the happenings this month on Sunshine and Scribblings. Because I'm nice like that.

  • Beautiful People {May 2016}. Basically just Tom crashing into your lives and stealing your hearts. And yes, he is adorable.
  • My Top 5 Favorite Lord of the Rings Characters. One of the most challenging (albeit enjoyable) posts I've written thus far. I expounded on all my favorite LotR characters (aka fangirled excessively over Legolas) and neglected to respond to comments. Oops. :P
  • Book Photo Shoot ~ Part 1. Eye candy. Bookish eye candy. That is all.
  • Tale as Old as Time. This is just me shamelessly fangirling over the FIRST TRAILER for the new Beauty and the Beast film. I'd like to say it's professional, but...well, you guys know me.


We had one of my favorite treats this month: s'mores! (We microwaved them because we're so fancy. XD) I discovered that cookies 'n' creme candy bars, marshmallows, and graham crackers may or may not be the best combination ever.

I purchased a few (as in ten *cough*) books. Hey, seven of them were the Narnia series (which I apparently still didn't own?!) so I feel justified here.


I got like...1,500 words written. I FEEL TERRIBLE ABOUT IT, BUT THAT'S ALL THAT HAPPENED. I also started freaking out because AAHHH HOW IS CAMP NANO ONE MONTH AWAY??? *dies* SOMEONE HELP ME PLEASE. I literally have nooo idea what I'm doing, and I'm starting to second-guess whether I should do it or not. Any Camp NaNo survivors have some advice?

The Queen of Sheba (or Patches, as she is known by her most favored subjects) celebrated her eighth birthday. We celebrated with much pomp and circumstance. We actually did nothing for it. Shhh, don't

The rest of my month was hot and humid. And rainy. Oh, the beauty of summer weather... :/

I've blabbered on long enough about MY month. Tell me how YOUR months were! Are you enjoying the unofficial beginning of summer? (Or are you, like me, cursing the weather and basking in the glorious AC?) I WANT TO KNOW.

Monday, May 23, 2016

Tale as Old as Time


Hullo, lovely peoples! So you may all be wondering why I'm posting on a Monday instead of Thursday or Friday...or you may be wondering, "Does she even have a schedule?" (And no, I don't. XD) Welllll...there is a VERY special reason for this impromptu post. Because I just found out (as in this morning *cough*) that they released the first trailer for the new live-action Beauty and the Beast film!!! *SQUEALS* I'M SERIOUSLY SO PUMPED. NO WORDS CAN CONVEY MY ECSTASY.

SO. Because I love you guys so very much, I naturally decided to bestow this beautimous trailer upon my loyal bookdragons. No need to thank me. Just watch the trailer and sing my praises in the comments section if you have the mind. ;)

IS IT BEAUTIFUL OR WHAT??? Seriously, I love this thing more than chocolate. (Okay, maybe not that much, but you get the picture.)

I totally had chills when I watched it. The castle, the ballroom, the music, the rose, the Ian McKellen (who is playing Cogsworth, much to my immense joy). It's all perfect. The only problem now is how I shall survive until March 17...

Oh, and just so you don't fret, I DO plan to still be posting something on Thursday or Friday. I've been incredibly busy so please excuse my negligence in replying to comments. You're all the sweetest, and I LOVE reading your comments. Yet time is a little rascally thing which delights in racing past in a blur. One day I'll catch up with it.


What are your thoughts? Are you as excited as I am for the new movie? (The cast is absolutely STELLAR!) What was your favorite moment of the trailer?

Thursday, May 19, 2016

Book Photo Shoot ~ Part 1

Recently, I've really gotten into book photography. And since I teased you guys about it a few weeks ago, I knew you all wouldn't rest easy until I shared the glorious pictures from my bookish photo shoots with you. You're welcome in advance.

(And yes, I have so many pictures that there will be another part sometime in the future. Oops. :P)


Super creepy. O.o

A sample of my vintage collection. One of the books
in the stack is a math book from the 1800s.

My OCD side is kicking in right now because there isn't
a perfect circle like I had hoped...ah, well.

My giveaway prizes! Aren't they beautiful?? You can thank
my lovely friend Morgan. ^_^

My Batson books. So colorful. <3

(We're totally ignoring the fact that the page I randomly picked
for this picture involves someone getting stabbed
by a thorn. Hehe. :P)
Looks like you made it to the end. Here, have a picture of my adorable cat Patches.

The Queen in all her glory.

Oh, and just a reminder! If you haven't already checked it out, author Rachel Starr Thomson is holding a Kindle Paperwhite and Christian fantasy book giveaway over HERE. There's only 1 week left to enter! Be amazing bookdragons and do yourselves a favor. 'Cause you seriously don't want to miss out on this.

Did you enjoy my photography? (I know I enjoyed showing it off. ;D) Which picture did you like the best? Oh, and are any of you into bookish photography? If so, I want to see the evidence. *nods*

Friday, May 13, 2016

My Top 5 Favorite Lord of the Rings Characters

Hullo again, dragons of the interwebs! I'm here today with a very special post. Any guesses as to what it is? (I know, it's impossible to tell from the title...)

It's a Lord of the Rings post! *cue epic battle cries and the lighting of beacons* But not just ANY Lord of the Rings post--it's a post about my favorite characters. You may already know one of them based off my sidebar (psssh, who are you calling a Legolas fangirl? I don't know what you're talking about *cough, cough*), but I haven't told you all of them. I figure it's about time I remedied that.

Luckily, I have an excuse to fangirl because there's a Lord of the Rings Week going on over at Write On, Cordy! which you can check out HERE. My LotR loving heart may have palpitated rapidly at the sight. It actually ends tomorrow but...hey, better late than never! I got so excited that I changed my header and everything. (Which, to be honest, I kinda hate. I did a horrible job. :P)

ANYWAY. I've rambled long enough. Let's get on to the awesomeness!

1. Legolas

"He was as tall as a young tree, lithe, immensely strong, able swiftly to draw a great war-bow and shoot down a Nazgûl, endowed with the tremendous vitality of Elvish bodies, so hard and resistant to hurt that he went only in light shoes over rock or through snow, the most tireless of all the Fellowship." 

C'mon, you knew it was coming. The obsession is real, people. Basically...he's been my favorite character since the beginning. (And no, it has nothing to do with his hair. Why would you think that? ;) ) First of all, he's an Elf. And...I don't really know if you need any other reasons than that. XD

In case his hair and Elf status aren't enough to convince you, I'll expound a bit on why I love him so.

He's extremely loyal. The scene that immediately came to mind was the one where Aragorn fell of the cliff during the Warg attack. Legolas finds Aragorn's Evenstar pendant, and you can tell just by the expression on his face how much he is affected by Aragorn's "death." Especially at that moment when Théoden tells them to leave the dead behind. I mean, just look at him.


Something else I really appreciate about Legolas is how dynamic of a character he is. When you see him in The Fellowship of the Ring, he wants nothing to do with the dwarves. Zilch. But as the movies progress, he develops a very strong friendship with Gimli. And I love that because it shows how people can change. (He also has a great character arc in The Hobbit films. I know, he wasn't supposed to be there, but I really admire his growth in the movies.)


 Plus, you know, he's just plain awesome. Let's face it.

The cuteness. I'M DYING.
“For Legolas was fair of face beyond the measure of Men, and he sang an elven-song in a clear voice as he walked in the morning.”

2. Arwen

"And there sat a lady fair to look upon. And so like was she in form of womanhood to Elrond that Frodo guessed that she was one of his close kindred. Young she was and yet not so. The braids of her hair were touched by no frost; her white arms and clear face were flawless and smooth, and the light of stars was in her bright eyes, grey as a cloudless night; yet queenly she looked, and thought and knowledge were in her glance, as of one who has known many things that the years bring."
Ah, yes. Another Elf. Shocker, right?
Arwen has a very special place in my heart--and rightfully so. The main reason for my fondness is her strength. People always praise Eowyn for being such a strong female character, and yes, she is. I wholeheartedly agree. But I think Arwen often gets overlooked because of her gentler, quieter appearance. She doesn't go charging into battle like Eowyn, but instead fades into the background a little more. She possesses a very special strength. After all, she gave up immortality to be with Aragorn. Her father did everything he could to persuade her otherwise, yet she went against his wishes and chose to give up everything for the one she loved. And if that's not counted as strength, I don't know what is.

I also love how much of a positive influence she is in Aragorn's life. She encourages him to accept who he is as the future king of Gondor and take up his sword and fight. Not only that, but she also never gives up hope. No matter how dark things may get, she looks toward the light and reminds us that there is still hope.
“For I am the daughter of Elrond. I shall not go with him when he departs to the Havens: for mine is the choice of Luthien, and as she so have I chosen, both the sweet and the bitter.”

3. Frodo

“I should like to save the Shire, if I could - though there have been times when I thought the inhabitants too stupid and dull for words, and have felt that an earthquake or an invasion of dragons might be good for them. But I don't feel like that now. I feel that as long as the Shire lies behind, safe and comfortable, I shall find wandering more bearable: I shall know that somewhere there is a firm foothold, even if my feet cannot stand there again.”  
Frodo Baggins has long remained a favorite of mine, and I find it sad that many people don't like him. They think he's weak, whiny, incompetent, etc. And you know what? He's not. In fact, I think he's one of the strongest characters in Lord of the Rings. The very fact that he 1) takes on the task of carrying the Ring and 2) resists its power for such a lengthy amount of time demonstrates great strength of character. And yes, he did falter at the end. He couldn't destroy the Ring. But he did everything he could to try and destroy it. If you want to read an AMAZING defense post about Frodo, you can find it here. (She wrote is sooo much better than I could have. XD)
I honestly feel like Frodo is such a relatable character. We all struggle with temptation. We can't possibly do everything on our own, and Frodo is an example of that. Yet he still remains courageous in the face of insurmountable odds.
I just love him, guys. And it doesn't hurt that he has the most amazing eyes on the planet. ;)
“And here he was, a little halfling from the Shire, a simple hobbit of the quiet countryside, expected to find a way where the great ones could not go, or dared not go. It was an evil fate.”  

4. Aragorn

"Suddenly Frodo noticed that a strange-looking weather-beaten man, sitting in the shadows near the wall, was also listening intently to the hobbit-talk. He had a tall tankard in front of him, and was smoking a long-stemmed pipe curiously carved. His legs were stretched out before him, showing high boots of supple leather that fitted him well, but had seen much wear and were now caked with mud. A travel-stained cloak of heavy dark-green cloth was drawn close about him, and in spite of the heat of the room he wore a hood that overshadowed his face; but the gleam of his eyes could be seen as he watched the hobbits."
The list wouldn't be complete without Aragorn, now would it? I really don't think there's much that needs to be said about this amazing man. He has a very quiet strength about him, a presence that is palpable. He's noble, chivalrous, brave, and undeniably loyal. What I like about him most, though, is the fact that he isn't always sure of himself. Like many of us, he sometimes has doubts. He doesn't want to accept his destiny as the next king of Gondor. But throughout the course of the stories, he comes to accept it and becomes the king he was always supposed to be.
There's just something about a "good guy" character like Aragorn that makes my heart happy. As much as I adore all the roguish rascals (*ahem* Flynn Rider), I always appreciate a character who just wants to do what's right.

“But I am the real Strider, fortunately. I am Aragorn son of Arathorn; and if by life or death I can save you, I will.”  

5. Merry



But it does not seem that I can trust anyone,' said Frodo.
Sam looked at him unhappily. 'It all depends on what you want,' put in Merry. 'You can trust us to stick with you through thick and thin--to the bitter end. And you can trust us to keep any secret of yours--closer than you keep it yourself. But you cannot trust us to let you face trouble alone, and go off without a word. We are your friends, Frodo.”
Merry always seems to be the most unnoticed hobbit of the lot. Whereas you'll hear people talking about Sam's loyalty, Pippin's adoration for second breakfast, and Frodo's task of carrying the Ring, you won't hear much about good old Meriadoc Brandybuck. And I really have no clue why.
He's grown on me the more I think about him. Although he gets into quite a bit of trouble with his partner in crime (aka Pippin), he really is the most logical of the hobbits. He's resourceful, clever, and yes, brave. (Let's just do ourselves a favor and assume everyone in LotR is brave. XD)  I just love how much he cares for Pippin. He's like a brother to him. And oftentimes, while everyone else is off on important quests, he gets left behind in the dust, unnoticed. When he goes to battle with Eowyn in the movies, he is mocked by the other soldiers. Yet he still musters up the courage to charge into battle and help his friends. He's just a simple hobbit from the Shire who wants to make a difference.
 "No,' said Merry. 'I can't. Not yet, at any rate. But at least, Pippin, we can now see them, and honour them. It is best to love first what you are fitted to love, I suppose: you must start somewhere and have some roots, and the soil of the Shire is deep. Still there are things deeper and higher; and not a gaffer could tend his garden in what he calls peace but for them, whether he knows about them or not."
There you have it! My very long-winded, jumbled thoughts on my five favorite Lord of the Rings characters. This post actually took a loooong time to write...probably 'cause I got caught up in all kinds of Pinterest things while looking for pictures. XD

What about you? Who are some of YOUR favorite LotR characters? (Yes, I'm making you pick.) Do you agree with me on any of my choices?