Friday, November 27, 2009

I am counting down the days. . .

. . .til Nanowrimo ENDS! And counting down the words I need to write before that happens. Only four more days of this madness. I am NOT going to be doing this again next year. It's just. . . crazy.

In other news. . . there are rumours of a Christmas giveaway here on Ribbons of Light. :-) Stay tuned. . .

Oh - and Happy Thanksgiving to my readers in the U.S.A.! I think it's an awesome holiday that you Americans have. Wish we had a similar celebration here!

Monday, November 23, 2009

A Damsel's Daybook IX

A Damsel's Daybook

Outside my window. . . a grey, slightly tempestuous, but beautiful evening.

I am thinking about. . . how many more words I need to write today for Nanowrimo. . .  and how cool it was that Stan Walker - an 18-year-old Christian guy from the Gold Coast - won Australian Idol last night!!

From the kitchen. . . dinner cleanup!

I am creating. . . a novel! A really lame one. . . 

I am reading. . . Asterix comics - some light reading in between fits of novel-writing.

I am hearing. . . rainbow lorikeets screeching. Two or three siblings playing cricket outside.

I am hoping. . . that I win Nanowrimo! I've come too far to lose now!!!

I am planning. . . to write 1000 more words in the next two hours.

Around the house. . . several people watching a Little House on the Prairie DVD.

My wish of the week. . . that my novel won't end up being complete and utter rubbish.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Yann Tiersen

Yann Tiersen

I was fortunate enough to discover this guy's music just a few days ago! Yann Tiersen is a French composer and multi-instrumentalist, playing and writing music for: piano, accordion, guitar, violin, xylophone, harpsichord and. . . er. . . pretty much any other musical instrument you can think of. In short he is an extremely talented - genius - musician. He recorded his first album in 1995 (at the ripe old age of 25!), but didn't become widely known until 2001, when his music was featured in the soundtrack for the film Amelie.

I've been featuring several of his compositions on my blog for the last few days. Isn't it gorgeous music?

Well, just wanted to share this "discovery" of mine with all of you. What an amazing musician. :-)

Here are a couple of Youtube vids. In the first one, he plays piano and accordion - at the same time. I get goosebumps every time I watch it. :-)

If you're watching these on my blog, you might want to pause my mixpod playlist first, so they don't clash. . . 

+ There are literally hundreds more Yann Tiersen videos on Youtube, if you want to check them out anytime.

Friday, November 20, 2009

An award + Nanowrimo

First of all, many thanks to Siminy for giving me this award! :-)

I award: Erin, Lynn, Laurie, Anna Maria, Enna-Rin, Gae, and Autumn.

Once again, I have to apologise for the lack of posting lately! Still, we're more than halfway through November. . . another couple of weeks, and everything will be back to normal - hopefully! ;-)

And finally: Ribbons of Light now has 80 followers! Wow! Thanks so much everyone for following!!

Sunday, November 15, 2009

My favourite literary adaptations: #14

~No. 14 - The Inheritance~

The Inheritance

What would be your reaction if a new, complete Jane Austen novel - written when she was in her teens - were discovered? Well, that's what happened in 1988 - only the author in question was Louisa May Alcott, not Jane Austen. The book - The Inheritance, written when Alcott was just seventeen - was first published and hence made available to the public for the first time in 1997. In the same year, a TV movie adaptation was aired. The movie makes some pretty major changes (some might say improvements) from the book, but essentially it's still the same story and characters.

The Inheritance

You know, I always find the plot synopsis part of a review rather boring (and often confusing) to read. Besides, it spoils the story. So in this series of reviews, I'll try to avoid writing about the plot, and just focus on the movie itself, and my thoughts on it.

The Inheritance
The evil Ida Glenshaw (Brigid Brannagh). . . 

Technically, this isn't that great a movie. Period drama is something that the British do remarkably well - sadly, not so the Americans or us Aussies. The script isn't that great; some of the acting is good, while some of it is honestly pretty bad! The costumes and sets are nice, but not stunning.

The Inheritance
Meredith Baxter and Tom Conti

And yet, it works. As I said, some of the acting (particularly from the actors playing the two "baddies") is sub-par, but the chemistry between the two leads is good, and Tom Conti's and Meredith Baxter's performances were genuinely good. The story may be predictable, but it's sweet, and besides, it's refreshing to find a family-friendly love story that isn't Austen or Gaskell. . . 

The Inheritance
Thomas Gibson as the handsome hero. . . 

It's several degrees less brilliant than most BBC miniseries, but several degrees less cheesy than your average Hallmark movie. In other words, whatever its shortcomings may be, I would still heartily recommend The Inheritance to anyone looking for a clean, enjoyable romance. It's also a movie for all ages - my grandparents loved it, as did my younger brothers and sisters!

The Inheritance
Agh! I couldn't find any HQ pics of the heroine! Here she is, on the far right.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

The Emma Award

Thank you so much, Jo March, for this award!

I award: Erin, Anna Maria, Laurie, Alexandra, and Barbara.

P.S. - I'm so sorry that I haven't been posting much lately. Nanowrimo eats up all of my time!! Sanity will have to wait until December, as will regular blog posts. But hopefully I'll have the next post in my "Adaptations" series up today or tomorrow.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Aussie readers: Miss Austen Regrets on TV


Jane Austen as played by Olivia Williams

Part 1 is on at 8:30 pm this Sunday (15th Nov.) on ABC1.

Thanks to my mum for noticing this in the TV guide. :-)

~IMDB page

~Charity's Place review

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

My favourite literary adaptations: #15

Yes, the Austen adaptations series was so much fun, I just couldn't resist! So here, by popular demand, is the follow-up. I hope you're not all getting sick of the "Top 10" format. Maybe it's a bit gimmicky, but it seems to work well, providing a framework in which to feature a bunch of reviews.

In this series, I am going to be featuring my 15 favourite film adaptations of classic books and stories - some of them will be children's books (as here), others will be more grown-up classics - George Eliot, Elizabeth Gaskell. I will obviously not be including Jane Austen here, since I've just done a series on Austen, and I won't be including any Dickens, either. I'd like to save Dickens for a future post/s.

So, let's get started. 

~No. 15 - The Railway Children 2000~


Two generations of Bobbies - Jemima Rooper and Jenny Agutter

Not many people know about this TV movie, but let me assure you, it is a gem. The 1970 adaptation of Edith Nesbit's book is more popular and well known, but the 2000 BBC version is an excellent movie in its own right.

The Railway Children 2000

Peter (Jack Blumenau), Mother (Jenny Agutter), The Old Gentleman (Richard Attenborough), Phyllis (Clare Thomas), Bobbie (Jemima Rooper)

The story begins in Edwardian England, in a middle-class London house. Roberta (always called Bobbie), Peter, and Phyllis live with their mother and father, until one night their father is mysteriously taken away - their mother won't say why. Then it is discovered that they are poor - they must leave their luxurious London home to live in a run-down old house in the country. The children badly miss their father, and life in the country is different to say the least, but the children gladly take the opportunity to explore their surroundings. One of their favourite haunts is the railway station. 

The Railway Children 2000

Jim (JJ Feild) is rescued

The cast is excellent - Jenny Agutter, who played Roberta in the classic 1970 version, here plays the children's mother. Michael Kitchen, David Bamber, and Sophie Thompson all make memorable appearances. Jemima Rooper (Amanda Price from Lost in Austen) is luminous as the young heroine, Bobbie - and keep an eye out for JJ Feild (Henry Tilney!) in one of his earliest TV roles.

The Railway Children 2000

It isn't a loud or fast-paced film, but that is part of its charm. We're given time to take in the scenery, the period details, the trains, family relationships, various characters and incidents in the children's lives, etc.

The Railway Children 2000

It's a delightful, gentle tale, detailing the family's troubles and the children's various adventures, without being remotely gooey or sentimental. There's something magical about this story, and Jemima Rooper's Bobbie makes this adaptation truly a joy to watch. A perfect film to watch with family on a rainy Sunday afternoon. :-)

Homeschool Blog Awards

Join Me at The Homeschool Post!

Wow!! I am in shock! :-D Erin has nominated me for the "Best Teen Girl Blog" in the 2009 Homeschool Blog awards, and I am now in the running to win!

And now, I am going to unabashedly ask you to vote for Ribbons of Light. :-)

~To vote for my blog, click here.~

Monday, November 9, 2009

Arwen's wardrobe: Part II

~The Grey Cloak~

Arwen's Costumes

Arwen's Costumes,LOTR

LOTR,Arwen's Costumes

~Blood Red Dress~

LOTR,Arwen's Costumes

Arwen's Costumes,LOTR

LOTR,Arwen's Costumes

LOTR,Arwen's Costumes

~The Bridge Dress~

Arwen's Costumes,LOTR

Arwen's Costumes,LOTR

~Various outfits~

LOTR,Arwen's Costumes

LOTR,Arwen's Costumes

Arwen's Costumes,LOTR

LOTR,Arwen's Costumes
I'm wondering if this the same costume as the blue dress above, only digitally altered to change its colour? It seems to be a very similar design. . .

Arwen's Costumes,LOTR

Arwen's Costumes,LOTR

~Deleted scenes~

LOTR,Arwen's Costumes

Arwen's Costumes,LOTR

LOTR,Arwen's Costumes

LOTR,Arwen's Costumes

And a couple that I couldn't identify. . .

Arwen's Costumes,LOTR

LOTR,Arwen's Costumes

This was certainly not a very organised or exhaustive overview of Arwen's costumes! For an infinitely more in-depth and informed look at Arwen's outfits, click here.

Sunday, November 8, 2009


I've been tagged by three people in the last week or so! Thanks, everyone. :-)

First up, the 8 Question Meme. Anna Maria tagged me for this.

1. Six names you go by:

Miss Lovely (my grandfather has called me this since I was about four years old. . .) 
"Zha-zha" (what my baby sister calls me - she can't pronounce my name yet),
"Elii-i-iise" (what my siblings call me when they're annoyed with me).

2. Three things you are wearing right now: 

Long skirt
Cotton top
Uhhh. . . a smile! :-)

3. Three things you want to do very badly at the moment:

-Finish reading Lorna Doone
-Re-read The Lord of the Rings
-Read ALLLL of Dickens

4. Three things you did last night/yesterday/today:

-Watched Monsters vs. Aliens
-Wrote some more of my story (11000 words now)
-Played some U2 songs on guitar (badly, I might add :P)

5. Two things you ate today:

LOL, I just got out of bed, so: cereal and milk. That counts as two things, right?

6. Two people you last talked to one the phone:

Not sure. I don't talk on the phone much. . .

7. Two things you are going to do tomorrow:

-Write some more of my story
-Read some more of Lorna Doone

8. Your three favourite beverages:

-Fruit juice

* * * * *

Now, Siminy tagged me for this next one (not sure what it's called).

~Do you like to write? Sort of. . . it's hard work though, as I have discovered this month! I always love writing on my blog, though. :-)

~Favourite books: Haha, you're asking for it here. For a fairly comprehensive (but by no means exhaustive) list of my favourite books, see my profile.

~Do you compose music/write songs? Sort of, not really.

~Do you like poetry? Sometimes. I haven't read much poetry, I should probably read some more.

~Loved someone so much who made you cry? No, thank goodness! (Which, however is a disadvantage when it comes to story-writing. How are you supposed to write a romance novel if you've never been in love? :P)

~Broken a bone? Thankfully, no!

~Been in a police car? No. . .

~Been on a boat? Yes

~Fallen asleep at school? LOL, that would be kind of impossible. . .

~Did you sing today? No

~KFC, Popeyes, or Church's? None!

~Chick-a-flick or What-a-Burger? Huh?

~Starbucks or McCafe? Neither

~What's your favourite time of year? Autumn, but I love all of the seasons.

~Do you ever talk to yourself? All the time - though not necessarily aloud.

~Do you have a favourite treat you like to buy on occasions? Haha, I have to agree with Siminy - a new book! Or a period drama DVD. :-D

~Do you believe the Bible is the literal word of God and is infallible? Yes.

~What's your favourite sport? Cricket!! But I love Aussie Rules, too. And Rugby. And tennis. And pretty much any sport, though I'm not a big fan of soccer.

~What colour is your ipod? I don't have one.

~If you could go anywhere in the world, where would you go? Europe

~If you could go to any fictional place, where would you go? Narnia

~Do you love to write or do you just like writing? Or do you write at all? Depends. But for the most part I love it.

~What do you want to be when you a grown-up? A wife and mother! But career-wise, I have no idea.

~Favourite animal? Hmmm. . . almost any Australian bird species.

~Favourite song? Impossible to say, there are so many. . .

~Do you like school? I like homeschooling, but to be completely honest, I don't like schoolwork, no matter where it's done. . .

~Are you a people person? Because I'm getting the idea that you are! Uhh. . . well, I like people, but I'm very shy. . .

~Do you like to talk? Not generally, no.

~Favourite food? Anything Indian - as long as it's not fiery hot.

~Hobbies? Reading, writing, playing guitar, baking, knitting, crocheting

~Favourite author? Jane Austen, and C.S. Lewis, and J.R.R. Tolkien, and Charles Dickens, and Charlotte Bronte, and Elizabeth Gaskell, and etc. etc.

~Favourite weapon? Uhhh. . .

~Is this a fun tag or are you getting bored? It's fun, but it's long!

~Do you like Hannah Montana and all those girly people and movies like high school musical? No way! Don't get me wrong, I'm not a Miley Cyrus-hater, but I'm not a fan either. . .

~What are you scared of? Public speaking, trying to make conversation with strangers. . .

~Favourite flower? Too many to name

~Colour of your eyes? Green

* * * * *

And this last tag was given to me by Jo March. Do any of you remember this post? Well, the ginormous long post that I wrote and then lost was this very same tag! But I'll have another go at it now. It's a really fun tag, unfortunately I don't have the wit or brains to do it justice! Someone clever could make something really hilarious out of this. (If you're clever, and you're reading this, do this tag!)

List twelve fictional characters that you love from any fandom, and then answer the following questions.

1. Inigo Montoya (The Princess Bride)

2. Darth Vader (Star Wars)

3. Mr. Collins (Pride and Prejudice)

4. Cinderella

5. Mrs. Bennet (Pride and Prejudice)

6. Legolas (The Lord of the Rings)

7. Reepicheep (The Chronicles of Narnia)

8. Buzz Lightyear (Toy Story)

9. Bilbo Baggins (The Lord of the Rings, The Hobbit)

10. Maleficent (Disney's Sleeping Beauty)

11. Prince Charming

12. R2-D2 (Star Wars)


1. Who would make a better college prof, 6 or 11? (Legolas or Prince Charming)

Hmmm. . . that's a tough one. These two characters have quite a bit in common. I'm going to say Legolas.

2. 12 sends 8 out on a mission. What is it? Does it succeed? (R2-D2 and Buzz Lightyear) I'm don't know what the mission was, but I'm sure it succeeded.

3. What is or would be 9's favorite book? (Bilbo Baggins) His own book, of course!

4. For some reason, 5 is looking for a roommate. Should (s)he share a studio apartment with 9 or 10? (Mrs. Bennet and Bilbo Baggins or Maleficent) Maleficent.

5. 2, 7, and 12 have dinner together. Where do they go, and what do they discuss? (Darth Vader, Reepicheep, and R2-D2) Hmm, what would those three talk about? It would certainly be a very interesting dinner party. . .

6. 3 challenges 10 to a duel. What happens? (Mr. Collins and Maleficent) ROFL! Maleficent would win, of course.

7. If 1 stole 8's most precious possession, how would she/he get it back? (Inigo Montoya and Buzz Lightyear) Haha! What a duel that would be. :-D

8. Suggest a title for a story in which 7 and 12 both attain what they most desire. (Reepicheep and R2-D2) "Rodents and Robots"

9. What kind of plot device would you use if you wanted 4 and 1 to work together? (Cinderella and Inigo Montoya)

10. If 7 visited you for the weekend, how would you get along? (Reepicheep) Splendidly! I'd love to meet Reepicheep!

11. If you could command 3 to perform any one task or service for you, what would it be? (Mr. Collins) Marry Mary Bennet, not Charlotte Lucas! Get married to someone who will appreciate your intelligence and talent for letter-writing!

12. Does anyone on your friends list write or draw 11? (Prince Charming) Hmm, maybe. . .

13. If 2 had to choose sides between 4 and 5, which would it be? (Darth Vader and Cinderella or Mrs. Bennet) Probably Cinderella. She's got marginally more brains thatn Mrs. Bennet.

14. What might 10 shout while charging into battle? (Maleficent) I don't know. . . maybe she'd do her cool evil villainess laugh.

15. If you chose a song to represent 8, which song would you choose? (Buzz Lightyear) The West Coast Eagles club anthem. Non-Australian readers won't get that. . . oh well. . .

16. 1, 6, and 12 are having dim sum at a Chinese restaurant. There is only one scallion pancake left, and they all reach for it at the same time. Who gets to eat it? (Inigo Montoya, Legolas, and R2-D2) I've got a feeling it would be Legolas.

17. What might be a good pick-up line for 2 to use on 10? (Darth Vader and Maleficent) ROFL! Those two would suit each other really well.

18. What would 5 most likely be arrested for? (Mrs. Bennet) Uhhh. . .

19. What is 6's secret? (Legolas) Contrary to what he told Gimli, he actually only reached a count of 41 orcs in the battle for Helm's Deep

20. If 11 and 9 were racing to a destination, who would get there first? (Prince Charming and Bilbo Baggins) Bilbo! He's a much more seasoned traveller than Prince Charming.

21. If you had to walk home through a bad neighborhood late at night, would you feel safer in the company of 7 or 8? (Reepicheep or Buzz Lightyear) Reepicheep.

1 (Inigo Montoya) and 9 (Bilbo Baggins) reluctantly team up to save the world from the threat posed by 4's (Cinderella's) sinister secret organization. 11 (Maleficent) volunteers to help them, but it is later discovered that s/he is actually a spy for 4 (Cinderella). Meanwhile, 4 (Cinderella) has kidnapped 12 (R2-D2) in an attempt to force their surrender. Following the wise advice of 5 (Mrs. Bennet), they seek out 3 (Mr. Collins), who gives them what they need to complete their quest. What title would you give this fic?

*Is laughing so hard she can't think of a title*

Well, I'm not going to officially tag anyone, but if you'd like to do one or more of these tags, please go right ahead!

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Arwen's wardrobe: Part I

Arwen's Costumes,LOTR

Reasons why to do this post:

1. I'm a Lord of the Rings fan. A female LOTR fan. I mean, how many guys would write long blog posts discussing the various qualities of x character's costumes?

2. I love the costumes in LOTR. Why can't we dress like that today?? 

3. It's a good excuse to share some gorgeous LOTR pictures.

So, let's begin. I am no costume expert, but that doesn't mean I can't admire, even though I know nothing about sewing and costume design!

~Arwen Arrives~

Arwen's Costumes,LOTR

Arwen's Costumes

Arwen's Costumes,LOTR

~Fleeing from the Ring Wraiths~

LOTR,Arwen's Costumes
This is one of the more subdued outfits worn by Arwen (played by the gorgeous Liv Tyler) in the trilogy, but it is nonetheless beautiful. Check out the unique egg-shell/spiderweb (which do you think it looks like?) lace trim on the collar.

Arwen's Costumes,LOTR

Arwen's Costumes,LOTR

LOTR,Arwen's Costumes

~The Green Dress!~

Arwen's Costumes,LOTR
Okay, so I guess I'm not doing this in chronological order, LOL. This is the dress worn by Arwen near the very end of The Return of the King, at Aragorn's coronation. 

LOTR,Arwen's Costumes
A detail of the beautiful beadwork in the sleeves and trim around the neckline.

LOTR,Arwen's CostumesArwen's Costumes,LOTR

Arwen's Costumes,LOTRLOTR,Arwen's Costumes

Arwen's Costumes,LOTR

~The Fellowship's Departure~

Arwen's Costumes,LOTR
This gown is made from an exquisite patterned fabric. The large sash adds a slightly oriental, kimono-like feel to the outfit. Speaking of oriental - some of these fabrics and colours remind me very much of India! :-)

LOTR,Arwen's Costumes

Arwen's Costumes,LOTR

Arwen's Costumes,LOTR

Well, that was fun. Part II to come soon, hopefully.

Most of my pictures are from this website.