Thursday, September 30, 2010

Aspire's B&W photo challenge

Aspire Photo Challenge

Ta da! Here is another first time entry of mine for an Aspire photo 'event'. I love color too much to use B&W too often, but sometimes it lends sorrow or mystery to a photo. A good sorrow, hopefully! :)

It could have been

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Lovely Photo Wednesday

Lovely Photo - Wordless or Not-So-Wordless Wednesday at Aspire

I am so excited to participate for the first time in Hannah's Lovely Photo Wednesday! Here is my entry:

Land bound and wishful

*Stay tuned; tomorrow I will post my photo for Hannah's B&W photo challenge!*

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Music for when

Music is so incredible! It has the ability to influence a person's mood in a big way. I am constantly listening to it, but I am very picky about what I am listening to at a certain time. I went through my CD stash and here is the list I came up with:

Bach, Rimsky-Korsakov, Debussy, Vivaldi, Copeland- I am a classical music junkie! Sure, some of it may be 'boring', but it's all really pretty if you listen. Whenever I encounter someone who screams at the mention of classical, I direct them to The Four Seasons and put their name on my convert list. Just kidding about that last part. :) But anyway, now that you know that I love classical, I will tell you when I like it best. It's very good for school, especially Bach. The last four guys are really good for reading to. Rimsky-Korsakov's Sheherzade is adventure in musical form. A good semi-classical composer is John Rutter. His Requiem is wonderful.

Celtic Woman- This is good all-purpose music. I clean my room to it, as it's fun to sing along with, I do school to it, as it's interesting enough to take my mind off the insanely boring subject I am doing, yet I can still concentrate. The best part of these Irish ladies is their variety- they do old folk tunes to movie music , and they make it all sound good!

Phil Keaggy- Here is someone who is a bit more obscure. He's a guitarist that has been recording since the 80's. His music is so relaxing and beautiful- this is one of those CD's I have to be careful I don't over-listen to and tire of! I listen to it when I am tired and don't want to sleep quite yet, among other times.

Alasdair Fraser and Natalie Haas- This is the best pairing of musician's ever. Alasdair Fraser can fiddle like a banshee and Natalie Haas can back him up with the coolest cello techniques. The music is modern yet classic and completely amazing. Truly.

Enya- Where do I begin? "Enya makes good music" is a shameful understatement. I am somewhat new to the ranks of Enya fans, but I am already devoted. Her music has a wide range, bur ethereal is the dominating theme. And there's so much of it! She has been around for a long time and has recorded enough to keep me happy for a long time! I listen to Enya at lot of various times, but writing is my favorite time to. I can even give her lovely song Only Time some credit for helping me out a most annoyingly severe writers block. :)

Movie soundtracks- Haha, these are great! The ones I have been listening to lately are The Fellowship of the Ring, Pirates of the Caribbean, Phantom of the Opera, and The War: A Ken Burns Film. I write mostly write when I listen to them, except Phantom; it's too dramatic. :) It's another very good school CD, though! Fellowship is my favorite. This is kind of funny:

Last night, I was writing with this music in the background. I hadn't meant to listen to it at that point; my sister just wanted music and I was not going to listen to Phantom of the Opera at 10 PM! I started writing unexpectedly, but I was very glad to, so if course I kept at it. Well, I got to a part in the piece I was working on and the weirdest thing happened. The emotions the current song was conveying was exactly what was going on in my story! And it wasn't the music affecting me- I had things already planned out in my head before the music came. It was really cool. :)

George Winston- More writing music! This is my favorite stuff to write to. George Winston's piano solo's are very... feeling. Sad, a lot of the time. It's easy to get depressed if you listen to him too much, but in rationed amounts it's simply beautiful.

Well there you have it! That's my music, or most of it. :) What's yours?

Oh, and a big thank you to Nela, my newest follower!

~Margaret Rowena

Have you voted on my poll yet? I would love it if you would!

Monday, September 20, 2010

A quick post...

Here is a very well-known Bible verse I have taken for granted for a long time:

Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, rejoice. -Philippians 4:4

I often forget about the remarkable gift God has given me in salvation. I can only see straight ahead, looking only for the mundanely annoying things in life's many imperfections. It is really easy to become bitter.

But the verse above says to praise God all the time, not only when life is good, because it has been bad and often will be! I was not promised a perfect when I became a Christian, but I have been promised God's eternal love. I have been given everything in it; how can I not be happy?

Thursday, September 16, 2010

What's up?

My brother left for his freshmen year of college a couple weeks ago. I was watching him pack up the car on the morning of departure. He lifted into the car a bin full of assorted essentials that used to be filled with toys- building blocks, to be exact. The tag was still on it. He ripped it off saying, "Well, I won't need this anymore." A few minutes later, I hugged him hard and watched him drive away.

That really struck me- the tag you see above had been on that Rubbermaid that held our childhood toys for a long over a decade. Now the bin is filled with the stuff someone needs for life in a college dorm room, not passing the playtime hours. Things really can change.

Being the dedicated (yeah right!) fan that I am, it took me a few months after its release to get Celtic Woman's newest CD! But I did get it, and I think it's fantastic. If you are not familiar with these singers, I will say that their performance style is not exactly my favorite (big and showy), but the music is wonderful. I was amazed at how much Celtic Woman has changed since their original CD from 2004; Chloe especially, but I still like her a lot. And I am delighted with Lynn and Alex, the two girls that I hadn't 'met' until this week.
Check this out: my roommate [sister] and I got new coverlets! Simple pleasures, right? :)

The tree one is mine. I love trees! Sister has one with colorful hills on it. She loves it, as you can see below:
I turned fifteen! My birthday was very nice, thanks to my wonderful family.

Aren't pictures that are so obviously taken my the subject great? :)

Okay, I have caught IBS (Insecure Blogger Syndrome) and have a request to make of you: I would love it if you could tell me your opinion of this blog, and suggestions for it if you have any. I have allowed anonymous comments if you don't want me to know who you are, but you can still be as nice as normal when you comment. I also have a poll up, so please vote.
Thanks so very much!
~Margaret R.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Of candles and a cat

I was all set up with two of my favorite writing accessories-my candles and cat-but my camera looked more appealing than my pencils, so I took these pictures.

These are (obviously) two of my candles. You could say that my love of candles is definitely one of my quirks; I love candles. The green one is rosemary-cedar wood in its scent. That would be my all-time favorite scent for a candle. The orange one is tropical fruit scented, also very good.

The glow is so appealing in the evening light!

Here is my another favorite of mine. My precious, darling, cat. His name is Kiwi.

I was kind of bummed that his ear met the frame of my window in this one, ruining the silhouette, but again, I am liking that light. (Margaret? Liking the light in a photo? What a surprise. *sarcasm*)

Here are some better shots at his lovely outline:

See those pretty eyes? They are kiwi green. Here's a picture from another day to show you:

Yes, I am fond of animals, especially the ones that I live with.
Thanks for looking and reading,
Margaret Rowena

Thursday, September 9, 2010

The School Story by Andrew Clements

Natalie is writing a novel. Her best friend, Zoe, thinks it should be published. And so begins this delightful story.

Natalie knows that her novel won't be taken seriously if it is known that a 12-year-old wrote it, so she adapts a pen name. But from seeing the piles of untouched manuscripts at the publishing company where her mom is an editor, she also knows that her book has a very small chance of making it. Energetic Zoe has the solution- she makes up a fake name for herself as well and becomes the new writer's agent and biggest supporter. The two also recruit their skeptical English teacher, Ms. Clayton, to help with the legalities. The three have a tricky job to do- submit the manuscript to Natalie's mother while not letting her realize that her daughter is the author, while keeping it out of the hands of Letha Springfield, the dreadful editor in chief at Shipley's Junior Books. Quite the challenge, no?

I thought that this was a very good book- the plot was unique and the characters were superb. As a writer, reading about the publishing process was really interesting, too. I couldn't wait to see the outcome of Natalie and Zoe's hard work, and I was not disappointed by the ending.

The above image is not mine.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Sharp leaves

I took these photos a few months ago while I was up north. It was a beautiful morning over a beautiful lake, and I was supremely happy. Joy inspires me.

I saved my favorite for last- usually I do not apply B&W, but this time, I liked it. The darkness next to the sharp color and light is...thought provoking, to me.

What is your favorite?

Friday, September 3, 2010

Congrats, Olive Tree!

The wonderful blogger at HorseFeather's has attained 200 followers! *applause* She is hosting a giveaway to celebrate, with prizes from her blog design shoppe, Robin Blogs.

If you want to follow a great blog and get in line for a blog makeover, click HERE.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Beautiful Summer

This summer, I....

...majorly loved the sky after some magnificent storms.
...had some delightful times with my wonderful friends.

...wrote. Not as much as I had hoped to, but I wrote, and that's all that matters, right? And I really like some of it. *grin*

...enjoyed some homemade ice cream. Thank you Dad!

... had a wonderful stint with fireworks.

...went camping! My summer is never complete without at least a weekend of roughing it.

Although these photos describe my summer very well, here is the one that really sums it all up:

My favorite part of this summer was the evenings. Reading, writing, and drawing in the glow of the setting sun. I love that time of day, even more so in the summer.

And now, school and autumn begin. Leisure will become rare, grass will fade, the sun will set at six. A new season to love and live.

Goodbye, summer.

"Don't cry because it's over, smile because it happened."
Dr. Seuss

25 more blessings

1. I went my first and last Major League Baseball game of the summer last night! My home team won and I had an AMAZING time.
2. Thanks to Robin Blogs, I now know how to get back to the original Blogger templates! Including the delightful Minima. :)
3. My friend's little brother came up with the best term for my braces; they are now "the sparkles on my teeth". How sweet is that? :)
4. It's fun to layer bracelets.

5. The last couple of days have been some of the best I can remember.
6. Les Miserables is such a good book! You will no doubt hear more about this later, too.....
7. I just had a blueberry muffin.
8. It's a golden September day.
9. My God controls the future, and He has the best plan for me in it.
10. All the dreams I get at night are very vivid and memorable.
11. The radio just played a really cool song.
12. Bunnies. Are. Darling.

13. It feels good to learn.
14. I have many (10-15) pillows on my bed.
15. My left thumbnail is painted hot pink.
16. The radio is playing another great song! It's Beethoven's Fur Elise on the piano accompanied by an orchestra. Mmm.
17. The sky was beautiful last night.

18. My CD player is emblazoned with Hello Kitty!
19. I have sight and hearing.
20. One cannot remain bored for very long in this varied world.
21. I have very attractive highlighters that go click-click. :)

22. I have pets.
23. Just because one's parent is laid off from work does not mean one's life turns miserable.
24. My birthday is one week away.
25. The window in my bedroom is a big one.