Monday, August 31, 2009


College has started, and I have yet to post anything particularly interesting about it, and then I had an idea. Why not take my status updates from Facebook, and post them here for you to see. They are in order, but the days they were posted are not here... The first one is from the day before I moved into my dorm, and the last was just today.

Marie De Vries...

is leaving tomorrow

suddenly realized that this is her last time sleeping in her bery own bed at home for a seemingly very long time...

this is my very first last first night of college :)

is back from Church! Sunday School was GREAT! I wish that church was a leetle closer, though...

is doing some serious research on college books

had a great day, and can totally see herself living here for a while :)

had tea in my dorm room this morning :)-- and needs to remember to get sugar packets from the cafeteria today...

just woke from a 1.5 hour nap :)

played frisbee yesterday, and it was amazing

is back from my first class, and off to 'Math for El. Teachers' next

is done with classes for the day :

got to use my umbrella today

loves rain, and thunderstorms :)

is doing homework

wants to watch ollies follies games today...

is doing laundry!

is trying very hard not to fall asleep doing homework while sitting in a very warm laundry room, with a very warm laptop...

is so far enjoying college life...

is finished with homework. Floor Bible study at 8, and maybe a movie later... maybe.

just finished watching Pride and Prejudice *sigh*

is going to class, lunch, and then another class that happens to be in the same room as the first.

just learned how to write numbers in tally s, Egyptian, roman, Babylonian, and Mayan.

Music Monday

this is someone playing 'Dawn' from Pride and Prejudice.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Bible Blurb

Isaiah 40:28-31
28 Do you not know?
Have you not heard?
The Lord is the everlasting God,
the Creator of the ends of the earth
He will not grow tired or weary,
and his understanding no one can fathom
29 He gives strength to the weary
and increaces the power of the weak.
30 Even youths grow tired and weary,
and young men stumble and fall'
31 but those who hope in the Lord
will renew their strength.
They will soar on wings like eagles'
they will run and not grow weary,
hey will walk and not be faint.

Moving Day

Well, yesterday was eventful, to say the least.

Move in started at 8am, but after loading the car, making a stop at Target (one that took longer than we thought it would) driving the hour it takes to get to Olivet, and a stop for lunch, my parents and I didn't get here until 11/12ish.

We figured it would be no big deal, we had moved my roommate in last Sunday, so the room was arranged and the carpet down, so all we had to do was move my stuff in and arrange it. It too a leetle longer than we thought... The dorm room isn't that big, so piling boxes and tubs of things into the room, and trying to unload them was a bit... challenging.

By around 3 we had everything in reasonable spots and my mom and I started 'the rounds'. We had to finalize my registration(I had apparently neglected to check some box during registration), get my bicycle sticker, get my ID/Tiger Dollars, find and open my mail box (a lot harder than it sounds), and figure out what in the world was wrong with my computer.

There was lots of walking, and lots of standing in lines, and lots of retracing steps, and lots of patience being tried.

I ended up having to download a bunch of stuff onto my computer, we went to the place they had computer help set up today, and eventually it was all figured out and I am able to get Internet. By eventually, I mean three hours... a LOT longer than I had anticipated spending registering my computer here...

So, my first day here has come and gone, and I think I'm ready to take on this 'college' thing.

Any funny stories you'd like to share about first days at school, college or otherwise? Go Ahead!

Saturday, August 22, 2009

North! or Be Eaten- Day Three

Although I usually do 'Tour Searching Tips' on the third and last day of a book tour, I won't be able to do that today... writing all that out takes so much more time than I have today. Why the lack of time, you ask? I've spent the day moving into my college dorm, and getting my computer registered... but that's another story for another post... right now, I have some ups and downs I found in the book, as well as some quotes and my thoughts on some of them.

I'm a bad/sad/negative news first kinda person, so we'll start with some things I didn't like:

There are really only a couple things I had a problem with in Andrew Peterson's novel 'North! or Be Eaten' , and one is a preference in formatting. This is fiction, so I didn't understand the author's need for footnotes... I figure, if its important enough, put it in the text. There are about 25 sets of footnotes throughout, and many of them redirect to a page from the first book... again, its pure preference. For all I know, you love footnotes and wish to see more of them in fiction. :)

Another is that there were a lot of names and second names to keep track of at the beginning, but that just might be because I did not read the first book before the second :)

One more thing that was just preference (again :D ), was that at one point in the story a letter is written to a character, and to show that it is a letter it is written in a fancy font that I found hard to read. Again, no biggie.

Now for the good. (yup, that was all for 'da bad')

'North! or Be Eaten' was full of morals. They weren't stuffed to the point of overflowing, but good messages slipped out from between the pages.

The novel was very well written, very suspenseful, and very satisfying. I also wrote this after reading the book:

' my sister kept telling me to be quiet... but when I get into a book I squeal, squirm, sigh, take quick breaths, and laugh... sometime I just can't help it! :) '

Have I mentioned that the plot is suspenseful? At one point I even wrote 'iiiiihhhh!" in the margins because I couldn't read fast enough to find out what would happen!

Another random thing I liked about this novel was the schooling the children's mother kept having them do. It would be a stressful point, where they couldn't do much else, so she would have the children work on their T.H.A.G.S. (three Honorable and great subjects). These subjects were writing, drawing, and singing, and each child had their specific subject that they worked on.

Quote time!!!

"... he dreamed of wide sweeps of snow under stars so sharp and bright they would draw blood at a touch."

-I don't know what to say to express my thoughts about this quote... its just amazingly written, very visual, and only a glimpse of Peterson's writing gift.

"I'm too angry at you to let you die."

-hahahaha, I just couldn't help posting this quote. The texts have funny lines in it every once in a while, and this was an example I couldn't help sharing.

" He wondered what book he might be reading when he finally breathed his last, and determined to grab a good one as soon as he sensed the end coming so that whoever discovered him would know he had a good taste in literature."

- I love this quote simply because I adore the character it is talking about, Oskar. He's the book shop owner, and reads a lot, and quotes a lot of things he has read... It is also a rather funny quote. :D

" a fit of recklessness, he [Oskar] even allowed them to tattoo his arm with the somewhat unimpressive inscription 'I Like Books.'

-another reason Oskar is so loved by myself :0

and if I ever had a 'fit of recklessness' where I got a tattoo, it would probably say something along those lines :)

"Don't just follow your heart. Your heart will betray you."

-Spoken true by the children's grandfather. I can tell you my jaw practically dropped when I read this... it was so unexpected. Society tells us to listen to our hearts, that they are innocent, they will lead us perfectly well, and that if we trust our hearts anything we want can happen... but Jeremiah 17:9 tells us that the heart is evil and beyond cure.

"...and looked up at the sky. White clouds slid across the deep blue dome, peaceful as a sight."

- Perfectly. Just splendidly written.

"Janner's last thought was a prayer for safety for his uncle. But Peet was not safe."

-what a cliff hanger!!!

"He didn't want to be small and alone for one second longer than he had to be."

- Janner is creeping along trying to save his brother, and is thankful that he is alone because he can control what he's doing, and stay small and quiet, with no surprises from anyone who happens to be with him. But he realizes he is vulnerable, and he is frightened, too, and his final thought on the matter is that he wants to be back with his family.

"...when we have grown too old ... we fail to see that the Maker's world is swollen with magic-- it hides in plain sight in music and water and even bumblebees."

- so true, even in our world. We just need little reminders like this one every once in a while...

"... the darkness is seldom complete, and even when it is, the pinprick of light is not long in coming..."

- another reminder we need quite frequently, that there IS a light at the end of the tunnel, that we WILL get through this okay...

Hope you enjoyed this book tour, and I encourage you to search through the other blogs to find more information about this new novel! I also encourage you to leave a comment about which quote I put up that you like the best, or one that you found in the book (if you've already read it, of course) that you thought was 'Worthy Of Recognition.'

Thursday, August 20, 2009

North! or Be Eaten- Day Two

Today I shall share what I wrote after reading 'North! or Be Eaten' and a mini character breakdown.

Character Breakdown first...

Janer- main character. He's the oldest of the three siblings and the Throne Warden of Anniera. In Anniera the second oldest was the king, and the oldest was the King's Protector. Janner writes.

Tink- the middle child, the second oldest. He is also know as 'Kalmar Wingfeather'. Tink is the one who would be King of Anniera, though he isn't so excited about the responsibility. Tink goes through a lot of growth in this novel. Tink draws.

Leeli- the youngest of the tree. She is the Song Maiden of Anniera. Leeli has a crooked foot, and uses a crutch. She is not easily anxious and has some ability that children seem to posses to help get through to people no one else can seem to.

Nia- the mother of the children. She had once been the Queen of Anniera. She is very concerned about her children's safty, and loves them very much. She encourages her children in the learning of their T.H.A.G.S. -Three Honored And Great Subjects- writing, drawing, and singing. She has raised the children by herself, because her husband, the late king of Anniera died defending Anniera.

Podo- the children's grandfather, and Nia's father. He, too, cares deeply for the safety of his grandchildre. Podo has a secret past life, though, and it chatches up with him in this novel..

Peet the Sock Man- the late king of Anniera's older brother. In Anniera he is known as 'Artham P. Wingfeather'. He is a very difficult character to understand... prior to this story he had gone half way through a transforation into a bird- so he has talons instead of hands, and hes gone partly crazy. He has incredible loyalty.

Nugget- a ped dog as large as a horse who helps the children, and does something incredible to save them.

Oskar N. Reteep- a bookstore owner who, prior to this book, had employed Janner and befriended the family. Oskar is a rather large man who wont admit to his baldness and he continually quotes people. An alltogether enjoyable character.
What I Wrote After Reading, Including Lessons I Saw:
'wow. I really don'e know what to say! It was an amzing adventuree that took me to placed I had never heard of before, that introduced me to people I never knew existed, and that played through perfectly in my mind's eye.

There are many truths and wondrful lessons packed into this novel, I don't know where to start... Janner learns so much through these 323 pages, as do the other characters, and the reader.

One of the characters suffers from guilt, suffers to a point that he litterally goes insane. Another is ashamed of his past, and does not want to admit his evil deeds to the family he loves. One of the children has a name to live up to, but is afraid of what will happen and unsure if his capabilities. Another child has high standards for others and seems to assume they will not be reached. He also feels unsure of his capabilities to perform the job required of him.

In the end, sanity is reclaimed, pasts are faced, andtenderness lifts the broken and shows that love binds everything together. Characters truely believe in their future and their capabilities, learn to trust their family, and believe in their capabilities. '

North! or Be Eaten- Day One

You may have read my post from last week about this book- the one oozing with details I wanted to share. Well, here I am, prepared and permitted to share.

Today I share a review.

Janner, Tink, and Leeli Igby are The Lost Jewles- heirs to the throne of Anneira. They are unaware of this fact though, for a long time.( At the begining of 'North! or Be Eaten' they do know that they are heirs, I guess they find this out in the first book- one I have not yet read. ) Anneira is a place most people think is ficticous... a place where childrens stories come from, and legends are created, not a place that many people actually thought existed.

When the children find out that they are heirs, so do some other people... some other 'not nice' creatures. The Fangs of Dang (half lizzard half human kinds of creatures) are sent to find the children and bring them to Gnag the Nameless who wanted them alive. They flee from everywhere they know and begin crossing the country, trying to cross into safety. But Safety is far, far away from the Igby children and their family.

Various members go through various situations including, but not limited to: avaiding Horned Hounds, running from Fangs and Trolls, nearly falling from incredible hights, losing a beloved and comforting pet, being captured by Stranders, being locked up by Stranders, being captured by hags, being forced into labor at the Fork! Factory, being imprisioned in a coffin for days at a time, nearly being caught by Fangs numerous times, going into the Ice Prairies practically alone, leaving their brothers/sons/grandsons to fend for themselves, nearly being eaten by Snickbuzzards, being betrayed, being suspended in a giant bird cage, listening to people give up their lives, and knowing they have the power to save those people, and facing life threatening dragons.

Need I say that this novel is packed with adventure? ;)

'North! or Be Eaten' just came out, so get it on Amazon now, wait for mor information on the book from me coming in the next two days, or go to these various websites:

The author's website

A bio of the author

The author's blog

And read what all these bloggers have to say about it:

The 160 Acre Woods

A Christian Worldview of Fiction

All About Children’s Books

Becky’s Book Reviews

Booking Mama

Cafe of Dreams

Dolce Bellezza

Fireside Musings

Homeschool Book Buzz

My Own Little Corner of the World

My utopia

Olive Tree

Reading is My Superpower

Through a Child’s Eyes

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Books on Tape

This summer I listened to a couple books on tape... they were 'Here Lies The Librarian', and 'The Spiderwick Chronicles'. Here are some thoughts on each:

Here Lies the Librarian

I really enjoyed this novel. I wasn't sure if I would, considering the graveyard cover art, and the first chapter or so... I kept listening though, because I was intrigued. This story takes place during the time when horses were fading, and automobiles were becoming popular. Jake takes care of his younger sibling nicknamed 'Pewee', and they run a gas station and repair sort of place to make ends meet- their parents both having passed away. Pewee is the main character, and one who has been banned from going anywhere near the public library. But that was before the librarian died... the library had been closed since. (the description given of this librarian I find quite funny; apparently she never let anyone check books out because she liked to keep them within her sight(: ) Some new librarians come to town, stir eveeryone up, and change the town, and Pewee, for the better.

The Spiderwick Chronicles

I listened to these in early July. The five books were recored onto five CDs, and I listened to them all in one day. 'The Spiderwick Chronicles' were amazing to listen to, the story was good, as was the way the story was read. I am eager to read moree Spiderwick books as soon as I can... The story is about these three children who move into some great aunt's old house because they have none of their own. Jared finds out about all kinds of fairy creatures, and that they are not all peaches and cream like stories tell. When he, his twin Simon, and older sister Mallory ignore the warnings to stay away from 'Arthur Spiderwick's Field Guide to the Fantastical World Around You' and all the creatures it tells about, they are put in danger and must ultamitly save the world.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Aviation Week

I knew that this was aviation week, it says so on my calendar...starting Monday, August 17th, all the way through Monday August 24th we celebrate flying. Its funny, Chicago's 'Air and Water Show' was this weekend... I wonder if they planned that? :)

I was at the beach late last week, and I got to see the pilots practicing for their show... though I've never seen the actual show. Here are some pictures I found online...

Some of the tricks they can do are amazing!

Looking at the planes above, and at the things they are capable of, its baffaling to think airplanes started like this:

its actually kind of interesting how much we have progressed...

So... trivia time! Anybody know who's birthday we celebrate this week? He was important to flight!

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Bible Blurb

I Corinthians 1:8

He will keep you strong to the end, so that you will be blameless on the day of our Lord Jesus Christ.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

North! Or Be Eaten

Ooooh, don't I wish I could just ramble on and on about this novel!

I read it while on vacation last week, sitting for hours at a time...
The adventure, the suspense, the plot twists, the plot, the characters, the lessons... I am bursting to tell you all about this book, but you have to wait.

Come back August 20th-22nd for a book tour of Andrew Peterson's novel 'North! Or Be Eaten' hosted by

The Library

The Library
Barbara A. Huff
It looks like any building
When you pass it on the street,
Made of stone and glass and marble,
Made of iron and concrete.
But once inside you can ride
A camel or a train,
Visit Rom, Siam, or Nome
Feel a hurricane,
Meet a king, learn to sing,
How to bake a pie,
Go to sea, plant a tree,
Find how airplanes fly,
Train a horse, and of course,
Have all the dogs you'd like,
See the moon, a sandy dune,
Or catch a whopping pike.
Everything that books can bring
You'll find inside those walls.
A world is there for you to share
When adventure calls.
You cannot tell its magic
By the way the building looks,
But there's wonderment within it,
The wonderment of books.

Sunday, August 09, 2009

Bible Blurb

Ephesians 2:8-9

For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith - andthis not from yourselves, it is the gift of God- not by works so that no one can boast.

Saturday, August 08, 2009

Stories, Pictures, and Sketches Oh My!

Ahhh... home sweet home. I DID try to find Internet while gone on vacation, but I couldn't find ANY. But I am here now, ready to share:

It was a very cold, rainy week. It was raining when we got there, again when we left today, and one of the days during the week. You can't let a good rain go to waste, so my sister and I took the paddle boat out to the raft. We sang 'singing in the rain' for a few seconds, and then gave up:) We did have a lot of fun there, though. Maggie wasn't happy that we were getting our picture taken...

Speaking of the raft... hahahaha I took my 8 y/o cousin out there the day before this picture was taken. She had to wear a life jacket, but , being 18, I didn't have to. We got on the raft and just had a good time. We danced, and made waves by jumping on the corners of the raft, and gathered sea weed (or sea flower, as I now refer to it...) for her younger sister. I looked up and screamed.

The paddle boat was floating away. I hadn't tied it to the raft properly, and it just slipped away... my sister Hannah saved the day. She got another paddle boat, and went after ours. I had thought about jumping in and swimming for it, but I didn't have a life jacket, and the sea flower reached to just inches from the water surface. I can swim just fine, very well, actually, but I HATE sea flower when it touches my leg...

Any way, my sister eventually made it to us, and saved us. It took a while, though, because the rudder in the paddle boat she was in has a tenancy to get stuck... our neighbors happened to be driving by in their boat about five minuets into our catastrophe and the girl (10 y/0) jumped into the run away paddle boat and paddled it to safety. I don't know what we would have done if they hadn't stopped to help... but I think it would have ended up with me getting wet...

Since then, I have taken a life jacket with me to the raft. And tied the paddle boat VERY tightly.

My dad, uncle, and I tubing. This was the first ride this tube went on... one of our tubes sprung a leak. Actually, three leaks. Then we gave up on it. We would patch one, fill it with air again, take it around the lake, it would be deflated, and we'd find another leak. Anyway, we got this one to replace that one. This tube was great! It was so much fun, and yet I almost regret going on it, because now I am so sore... my neck, arms, back... oh well. The above picture was taken right before the one below... my dad fell off, and if you look close you can see that I must have thought it was quite funny.

He had it coming. Just a little bit after we started, he pushed my uncle off. They went back and forth pushing each other off until one of my sisters in the boat pointed out that I hadn't wiped out yet (the perks of riding in the middle) so they pushed me off... the water was so warm from a summer of sun heating it, but the air was VERY chilly.

Okay, those waves coming up were huge. I had a right to let a scream out... Once, a year or two ago, after bouncing over some monster waves, I flew out of that tube a couple feet into the air, and when I hit the water the wind was knocked out of me. But this time my dad and I landed right as rain :)

These are the lake we stayed at. First was a picture of it, and then a sketch I did one morning. I've posted a few of my sketches because some of them really turned out. This one was colored pencil and pen.

This is of the moon. Its orange partly because that is what color the moon looked, and because I was outside, drawing in the dark. This was done in drawing chalk.

This was done right after the moon. We were roasting marshmallows over the fire in the grill. Again, the colors are a lil more bold than I usually draw in because its dark out and I can't really see what I'm doing.

Inspired by a sailboat that was on the lake. The swirls were added by request of my 6y/o cousin. This is marker and colored pencil.

I did this one last night. I have to say this is my favorite. And that I'm disappointed to not be able to figure out how to rotate it... just, tilt your head to the left, if you could... good. Every year I end up drawing the dock and the scene beyond... every year my most recent one is my favorite :) This one is marker, pen, and colored pencil.

Do YOU have any vacation stories? Do share!

Saturday, August 01, 2009

So, I'm leaving Again...

This time its a family vacation, and the lake we are staying at has NO internet. Or so I'm told. No internet means no blog, so you won't be hearing from me for around a week. As my dear friend tigger would say, TTFN!


Found this over at Library Hospital...

Preferences, what do I prefer?

Reading something frivolous? Or something serious? hmmm... serious....

Paperbacks? Or hardcovers? paperbacks :)

Fiction? Or Nonfiction? Both.

fine, I'll choose. Fiction. Sometimes nonfiction just makes me think too much...

Poetry? Or Prose? have I ever mentioned I very much dislike make choices and desisions? I think prose beats poetry by a very slight margin...

Biographies? Or Autobiographies? An autobiography, if its available. I think it would be interesting to see what that person thought was important in their life.

History? Or Historical Fiction? historical fiction! Its just a bit educational, very much 'real life', yet it never really happened. I love historical fiction... I havn't read any in a while, have I...

Series? Or Stand-alones? stand alones. though I don't mind a series as long as I know its a series before I start it. I don't like finding out once I get to the last page that the story is only a third or so over....

Classics? Or best-sellers? Classics. Dont even get me started about 'best-sellers'

Lurid, fruity prose? Or straight-forward, basic prose? ug. do I have to decide??? Really, I think it depends on the story, the plot, the characters... it has to make sense all together, am *I* making sense?

Plots? Or Stream-of-Consciousness? I much prefer a plot. I've only read one stream-of-consciousness, and thoroughly disliked the book.

Long books? Or Short? sigh. this really isn't fair. I am so indecisive!!! I choose short. long books sometimes end up being l.o.n.g.

Illustrated? Or Non-illustrated? non

Borrowed? Or Owned? Borrowed. I love the library :) I will buy a few books if I truly enjoyed them, and know I will read and re-read...

New? Or Used? New! Although it is hard to read them at first with the pages being so stiff, I much prefer that to old paper that makes my hands feel dry.

I challenge YOU to go through this list, post your own, and leave a comment with a link. I can't wait to read your answers, and hopefully you will be able to make decisions a bit easier than I did... :)