Sunday, October 30, 2016

Women, A History: Mary Rowlandson - True American Survivor

Mary Rowlandson 
True American Survivor 

     I had never heard of Mary Rowlandson prior to taking my American Lierature class last semester. However, her personal narrative of her capture by several Indian tribes during King Philip's War, her hellish journey of loss and survival, and her miraculous homecoming left me amazed. One lonely women, a wife and mother, who had nothing but her domestic skills and her faith to overcome separation from her family, the death of her daughter and a never-ending fear of losing her life to her enemies. 

      She was born Mary White in Somerset, England. Her family moved to Salem and then to Lancaster, Massachusetts in the 1650's. When she was nineteen she married Reverand Joseph Rowlandson and they had four children. As was typical of the time, Mary was devoted to her young children and was a very skilled as a seamstress, a talent that would ultimately save her life. 

     In 1657, King Philip's War was raging on between the Native Americans and the European colonists. There had been attacks and raids from the Indians and overtime they came closer to Lancaster. On February 10, Lancaster was attacked by three different allied Indian tribes and she and her children, Joseph, Mary and Sarah were taken hostage. Sarah was badly wounded and died days later and Mary was soon separated from her other two children.

     In her narrative Mary described her eleven weeks of captivity where she was sold off from tribe to tribe. Sometimes she was treated kindly, but most of the times she suffered terrible physical abuse. Mary's only salvation was her seamstress skills. She sewed clothes and blankets as well as mended all for a little bit of food at the end of a long day of travel. While she was alone Mary would repeat Scripture and pray constantly for her children. 

     Finally, Mary was freed by King Philip through a ransom by the people of Boston and was soon reunited with her husband and three children. Afterwards, Joseph Rowlandson moved his family Westherfield, Connecticut, but died a year later. Mary moved her family to Boston where she  eventually married Captain Sumuel Talcott. Six years after her capture, Mary wrote her narrative of her survival, The Sovereignty and Goodness of God: Being a Narrative of the Captivity and Restoration of Mrs. Mary Rowlandson. Her narrative was published in 1692, and was a success in both the colonies and England and is thought to be the first "American Bestseller."

     Mary died on January 5, 1711. Her bravery and heroism is marked in Puritan history and literature and to this day, Mary is considered one of the greatest survivors in American history.


Saturday, October 29, 2016

Supergirl Layout

     After seeing Supergirl, I wanted to make a Supergirl inspired header and I think it's awesome! I may have used this background before, but it looks great. This is one of the few times where I got the header right the first time; it's a definite favorite now : )

Character Sketch: Princess Leia

     Since 1977, Princess Leia Organa has been the paragon of a true action heroine. Beautiful, strong, intelligent as well as charming and courageous. Few female characters have been able to live up to her, but so many girls have been inspired by her as well. Leia's allure doesn't come from the fact that she is a princess or even a general, but rather as someone who loves deeply and has no shame in showing it.

     Leia is a woman with many familial connections; the daughter of Anakin Skywalker and Padme Amidala, twin sister to Luke Skywalker, wife to Han Solo and mother to Ben Solo (Kylo Ren). Leia inherited her mother's gift of politics and leadership and her father's powerful intuition of the Force. The Force tends to be stronger with Leia than with her brother which allows her to control her emotions and fuel them into her decisions.

      Leia's legendary love story with space pirate Han Solo is has been the stuff of romantic and comedic relationships that is reminiscent of Elizabeth Bennett and Mr. Darcy. A young and strong-willed princess who finds herself face to face with a handsome, older rogue is hardly forgettable. However, Han and Leia's relationship has been rocky and unsteady from the beginning and comes to a halt when their son, Ben abandoned them. While her brother and husband fled, Leia remained strong and continued on with her work to protect the Galaxy. 

     After the young orphan, Rey, proves herself in battle and conflict, Leia sees a small bit of her younger self. Loss and fear that is encompassed by bravery and kindness. Everything in Leia's life whether love or loss has created a woman who will not succumb to the evil around her and never back down from a fight. A woman whose integrity and compassion has made her a leader, a rebel and role model for girls and woman that has endured for almost forty years.

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

The Period Drama Tag

      Ruth at Amongst Spring Blossoms tagged for The Period Drama Tag; thank you Ruth!!!

1. Which period drama do you like most?
     - Downton Abbey or Call The Midwife or Poldark or Grantchester....pretty much anything British drama related. 

2. Choose four characters from a period drama that you like most.

     Lady Rose MacClare Alderidge, Anna Smith Bates, John Bates and Phyllis Baxter

3. Which period drama have you recently seen that you recommend to other bloggers?
     - Besides Poldark, I don't think I've seen any new period dramas. Yet, I highly recommend Poldark!

4. If you had to choose, which period drama heroine do you like best?

Ruth Wilson as Jane Eyre in the 2006 BBC One mini-series
     - Jane Eyre. She was just an extraordinary character who overcame so much adversity in her life and truly deserved her true rewards of love and happiness in the end.

5. And which period drama hero?

     - Sydney Chambers from Grantchester. Just a good, moral man trying to do what is right, get the job done and help those who need it. Even when in compromising situations, Sydney is always consistent with his moral nature.

6. Have you ever seen a movie who was exactly, or mostly, the same as the book?

Pride and Prejudice (1995) from BBC

7. Which movies do you like most, Jane Austens movies(example:Emma), Dickens movies(example:Little Dorrit) or the movies from the Brontë sisters(example:Jane Eyre)?
     - A mix of all. Austen's stories all have satirical undertones of the culture and lifestyle of her times, Dickens exposed the dark and criminal side of London, England and the Brontë sisters used their own life experiences for their stories.

8. Would you rather play Emma in Emma, Lizzy in Pride and Prejudice, Catherine in Northanger Abbey, Mary in Downton Abbey, Marian in Robin Hood, Amy in Little Dorrit, or Jane in Jane Eyre?

     - Marian, definitely!

9. Would you rather have Call the Midwife or Cranford?

     - Call The Midwife!

10. Which period drama that you haven't seen yet would you like to see?

      - BBC The Musketeers 

11. Which adaption of Sense and Sensibility do you like most: 1995 or 2008?
     - SO NOT A FAIR QUESTION!!! I love them both!

12. And which adaption of Pride and Prejudice do you like most: 1995 or 2005?
     - 1995, by far

13. Which couple from a period drama movie do you like most?

     - Ross and Demelza Poldark from BBC's Poldark


Sunday, October 23, 2016

Supergirl - Season 1

     I finally got through Season 1 of Supergirl which I recorded on the DVR and binged-watched through all last week! When it comes to shows about superheroes, anyone can be skeptical, especially about female superheroes. However, I was pleasantly surprised at how charming and fun this show was, but also filled with emotional depth and complexities in all of it's characters. The writing was very strong and there was no shortage of crazy aliens and monsters who were trying to take down the city and even the world. Yet, a story is only as good as it's characters and if anything, Supergirl got its characters just right. 

Kara Zor-El//Kara Danvers//Supergirl
Melissa Benoist as Kara//Supergirl
      Twelve year old Kara Zor-El of Krypton has enjoyed a happy life on her planet. Yet, disaster comes quite suddenly and unexpectedly and Kara is sent of by her mother to protect her baby cousin Kal-El. However, Kara's pod in knocked off course due to the explosion of her planet and when she finally reaches earth, cute little baby Kal-El is now Clark Kent or Superman to the rest of the world.

     Like her now famous cousin, Kara begins to develop abnormal abilities including flying, super strength, x-ray vision, advanced hearing and heat vision. Afraid of what is happening, Kara finds a home with the Jeremiah and Eliza Danvers (played by Helen Slater, the original Supergirl and Dean Cain, Clark Kent//Superman from Lois and Clark: The New Adventures of Superman) and their daughter, Alex. Overtime, Kara begins to hone her abilities while living with the Danvers as well as finding a new family. 

     By the time Kara is an adult, she is in control of her powers and works as the assistant to world famous television journalist Cat Grant of CatCo. And also as Supergirl for the Department for Extra-Normal Operations with her sister. Yet, Kara cannot hide her powers forever and eventually she is revealed to the world as Supergirl. Now, Kara must balance her life as a human and an alien in never ending ending struggle of good v evil that challenges her humanity, her happiness and even her heart.

     To say that Melissa Benoist did a good job as Supergirl would be a serious understatement. She went above and beyond my initial expectations for Kara. Like with Nina Dobrev from  The Vampire Diaries, Melissa has an extraordinary ability to convey a wide emotional range that can be difficult for a young actor or actress. For the most part, Kara is a very sweet, feminine and hardworking girl, but there are times when her insecurities and anger get the better of her and Melissa pulls off both sides effortlessly. Kara can make you laugh and cry, she's relatable in her struggle to fit into society without being made to conform, she's got family issues, she lives in the shadow of a famous family member and lets not forget matters of the heart! And that's all in one day! Melissa gets all of it right.

National City and the DEO

     Alex Danvers: Kara's protective older adoptive sister who works for the DEO. Alex is a hardworking young women, with a great deal of painful secrets and pent up anxieties due to the loss of her father when she was young. However, Alex is loyal to the end and will always stand with her sister; never compromising or giving in.

     Cat Grant: The Queen of All Media in National City. Cat Grant is the ultimate idol of a successful business women and she'll be the first person to tell you. Although, she has a prickly exterior, there is really a remarkable women underneath that is gifted with great wisdom and insight. Cat becomes an unlikely mentor figure to Kara (her assistant) as well as to Supergirl. When things in the city get tough, there is no one else you would want more by your side. 

     Hank Henshaw: The head of the DEO that while gives the appearance of an ordinary human, Hank is actually a fugitive alien whose own planet has been destroyed. Strong and moral minded, Hank is a leader that the world needs in its worst hours. There is a genuine goodness in Hank that makes you trust him and he becomes a loving father figure to both Alex and Kara.

     Jimmy Olsen: The one and only Jimmy Olsen from The Daily Planet and best friend to Superman, is now switching gears and works as the head photographer at CatCo. Jimmy is one of the few people that knows Kara's identity as Supergirl and, like with her cousin, he assists her the best that he can. 

     Winn Scott: Kara's best friend who she met at her first day at CatCo. Winn is a computer genius who can hack through any system be it human or alien, yet when it comes to his personal feeling for Kara, he's a wreck. Things only get more complicated when it seems that Kara is more interested in Jimmy than him.

      Maxwell Lord: A genius, billionaire, scientist, that is forever riding the fence between enemy and ally. While Max's heart might be in the right place from time to time, his genius and craving for power is forever overshadowing his somewhat good nature. Never really knowing where he stands, Max is an enigma that keeps everyone guessing what his true motives are.

     While very reminiscent of Smallville, Supergirl  just may be able to forge it's own clear identity for a female superhero who can stand on her own. The show has now been moved to the CW (probably so it can coincide with the DC universe's of Arrow, The Flash, and Legends of Tomorrow) and there could be a chance of success and longevity. I would very much like to see the show succeed, because right now young girls need a strong, but generous female superhero to look up to and who's not afraid to remain feminine and vulnerable. That's not too much to ask for the young female audiences out there. 

Thursday, October 20, 2016

BBC Robin Hood Week Tag

     Rachel at A Girl's Place is doing a BBC Robin Hood Week at her site that started on the 17th and ends on the 22nd! I'm kind of late in the game, but I really love this show and I can never say no to a tag : )

1. Who introduced you to the Robin Hood BBC series?
     - My mom. She loves anything BBC (like me) and she came across this show on NetFlix. After watching a couple of episodes, she thought my family would like and so we all watched it together. And like with BBC Merlin, we fell in love with it!

2. How do you react when there is someone else who just started seeing the series?
     - Oh! You'll love it --- (However, I'm secretly saying "Don't see Season 3)

3. Which season do you like the most?
     - Season 2

4. Did you wanted that the show could go on and on, or should it have ended just like it ended?
     - I think it could have had another season, but it seems like the writers were running out of material to work with. So, it was probably best to end it with three seasons.

5. Favourite character? (Okay, pick at least four, because there are much characters to choose)
     - So hard!! I love Will Scarlet, Djaq, Marian and Robin. The romances : )

6. Which character do you dislike the most?
     - Kate. She was just terrible.

7. On a scale of 1-10, how much of a fan do you consider yourself?
     - 10...10.5...11...

8. If you wanted to save someone of dying, who would it be?
     - Marian, of course!

9. Which character would you not want to play in the show?
     - Kate or Isabella

10. While watching the series, did you ever read any spoilers about the show?
     - I would see a couple on Pinterest, but spoilers never bother me.

11. What's your favourite quote from Robin Hood BBC?
     - "People of Nottingham!These men have committed no crime worth more than a spell in the stocks. Will you tolerate this injustice? I, for one, will not!"

12. At least, which couple do you like the most?

Saturday, October 15, 2016

Little Things #15

1.) I dream of getting my writing published: Or at least get one thing published and off my bucket list.

2.) Days when your hair looks perfect: Especially Sunday morning!

3.) Reading a new book this summer: Read two very good books this summer : )

4.) Baby giggles: Even when there doesn't seem to be anything that funny!

5.) Introducing your friends to your fandoms: And hope that they can love it as much as you.

6.) I'm moody: Or melancholy as my mother describes me. 

Monday, October 3, 2016

Fall Layout

With Fall now here I was in debate as to what I wanted my layout theme to be. Then while doing my post on Pocahontas, I came across this adorable picture of John Rolfe and Pocahontas from the film The New World, (which is a great movie!) and I decided to do a Virginia themed layout for October.

Rio 2016

      Finally, I've gotten around to posting my overview of the Rio Olympics which were AMAZING!!!! My family is big into the Olympics and for two weeks our television was on channel 10 and was pretty much running most of the day. Normally in the morning they would go back and forth with the lesser known sports and the smaller heats, but as soon 7 or 8 o' clock rolled around, the family was gathered in the living room until midnight watching swimming, gymnastics, outdoor volleyball and track and field. 

Opening Ceremonies


Amazing Katie Ledecky!
Lilly King just doing her thing : )
Michael Phelps and his teammates celebrate another victory
I watched history in the making as Simone Manuel became the first
African-American woman to win a gold medal in swimming!!!
The Final Five!!!

Japan's Kohei Uchimura. Gold Winner for men's all around.
He deserved it!!!

Beautiful Aliya Mustafina celebrates her gold in the uneven bars.
She is a definite winner and publicly condemned the known Russian athletes
that were accused of doping, believing that their actions slandered all Russian athletes
that were competing in the games. 
Sanne Wevers from the Netherlands who scored a gold with
her incredible routine on the balance beam!
Sanne's winning routine

Track & Field

These girls were fantastic! Talk about rising from the bottom
after what the Brazilian team did to them in the relay!
Closing Ceremonies

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe made his appearance
as Mario!

Thank you Rio for the incredible Olympics and I'm anticipating Tokyo 2020!