Category Archives: Celebrating Beauty

Celebrating Beauty: Max Comforts Kate

These last 2 months have been rough.

In February, I started my first job in over 3 years. I’m glad I’m working again, but it can be hard.

Last week, I decided to end a relationship with a friend after I came to the conclusion that communication had broken down and such a relationship was now doing me more harm than good. In short: Briefly, I became the kind of person I promised myself I would never be, and that cost me someone dear. I pray for her, wishing her the best. But I came to the conclusion that it is better for me if she not have such a prominent place in my life anymore.

My deadline for deciding whether or not to continue my college education is drawing near.

There has been at least one bright spot, though: I finished my first screenplay.

It’s a short film about how a young woman’s choice to go naked effects her search for meaning in her life after she returns home upon dropping out of college.

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The reason I say all of this is:

I am bringing back Celebrating Beauty.

Celebrating Beauty was a series of posts I wrote in December — I tried to write one every day — celebrating the beauty in the world.

I was sick of, and depressed by, the 24-hour news cycle of natural disasters, terrorist attacks, rapes, and murders, and wanted to do what I could to shine some light into the darkness.

After the rough time I’ve had lately, I’ve realized that I need beauty in my life now more than ever.

There won’t be any limit on Celebrating Beauty now — I won’t be doing it just for one month.

The first entry in the new Celebrating Beauty series:

Max Caulfield comforting a depressed Kate Marsh in DONTNOD Entertainment’s Life is Strange:

Thank you to Wild Woman Sisterhood for the photo.

Celebrating Beauty: Day 8 – Looking Closer

“I’ve heard it too many times to ignore it,
It’s something I’m supposed to be…
Someday we’ll find it.”
~ Kermit the Frog

Image result for kermit the frog banjo

Note: I’ve been away from here for two days because I was spending time with family, and doing Christmas shopping.

Inspired by TheOriginalPhoenixThimblerig’s Ark, and Sunshine Lou, every day until Christmas, I’m going to write about one example of beauty that I have found, in order to counter the darkness that I see when I turn on the news.

Day 8, I am celebrating:

Film critic, teacher, and author Jeffery Overstreet.

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Jeffrey Overstreet is one of the people who inspire me to keep on trying to be a light in dark places. (Matthew 5:14 — 16)

The reason I am celebrating Jeffrey Overstreet is because of a recent post on his blog, Looking Closer, that made me think: Yes! He gets it!

Did you ever have a moment where you read someone’s writing and think: Yes! This is exactly what I’ve been trying to say!

This is the post I’m talking about:

The difference between Gandalf and Saruman

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That post gave me hope. It inspired me to not despair — to keep on trying to make the world a better place and show Jesus’ love to all people.

Question:

What blog post, from what blog, told you something you needed to hear?

Celebrating Beauty: Day 7 – Sansa Stark

Inspired by TheOriginalPhoenixThimblerig’s Ark, and Sunshine Lou, every day until Christmas, I’m going to write about one example of beauty that I have found, in order to counter the darkness that I see when I turn on the news.

Day 7, I am celebrating:

Sansa Stark.

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There is a lot to celebrate about Sansa. But, for now, I am celebrating one scene involving her.

In the second book of George R.R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire, A Clash of Kings, Sansa is confronted by a man wanting her to sing him a song:

“I’ll have that song. Florian and Jonquil, you said.” His dagger was out, poised at her throat. “Sing, little bird. Sing for your little life.”

Her throat was dry and tight with fear, and every song she had ever known had fled from her mind. “Please don’t kill me,” she wanted to scream, “please don’t.” She could feel him twisting the point, pushing it into her throat, and she almost closed her eyes again, but then she remembered. It was not the song of Florian and Jonquil, but it was a song. Her voice sounded small and thin and tremulous in her ears.

“Gentle Mother, font of mercy,
save our sons from war, we pray,
stay the swords and stay the arrows,
let them know a better day.
Gentle Mother, strength of women,
help our daughters through this fray,
soothe the wrath and tame the fury,
teach us all a kinder way.”

What happens next, I won’t spoil.

I’m celebrating this scene because I see it as one of the many examples of beauty to be found in the ruthless world of Westeros.

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“Whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable — if anything is excellent or praiseworthy — think about such things.”
~ Philippians 4:8

Question:

What scene from a book, show, movie, etc., makes you cry?

Celebrating Beauty: Day 6 – Getting Cozy

Note: I’m sorry that I haven’t been as consistent with these Celebrating Beauty posts as I had planned to be. These last few days  I’ve been busy. Plus, I was doing some much-needed soul-searching. But: I’m back now. 🙂

Inspired by TheOriginalPhoenixThimblerig’s Ark, and Sunshine Lou, every day until Christmas, I’m going to write about one example of beauty that I have found, in order to counter the darkness that I see when I turn on the news.

Day 6, I am celebrating:

Relaxation.

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Waking up to a fresh, steadily increasing layer of snow on a day where I have nothing of vital importance to do, I’m currently sitting on my couch, under a blanket, having eaten two donuts and fed Kiki, the calico kitty who prowls my front yard, who isn’t going to let freezing weather get in the way of food. My heater is on. And now I just need to make myself a cup of hot chocolate and my morning will be complete.

In this stressful season of winter, may you take time to take it easy.

Get cozy with the people you love, and turn the cold gray of winter from something dreary, to something beautiful.

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Some music that always helps me relax:

Question:

What is your favorite thing to do during winter?

Celebrating Beauty: Day 5 – Andre Rieu

Inspired by TheOriginalPhoenixThimblerig’s Ark, and Sunshine Lou, every day until Christmas, I’m going to write about one example of beauty that I have found, in order to counter the darkness that I see when I turn on the news.

Day 5, I am celebrating:

Andre Rieu.

Ironic that this was music used in 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968) — a film about the attainment of a higher state of being.

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When I listen to Andre Rieu’s orchestra and see all the dancing, happy people, I feel like I am experiencing a taste of Heaven.

In the face of such beauty, it seems preposterous that there couldn’t be something more — something beyond what I can see with my eyes, feel with my fingers, smell with my nose, taste with my tongue, or hear with my ears.

Perhaps there is a certain element of the lumpen literati that is so dogmatically atheist and materialist and Earth-bound that it finds the grandeur of space and the myriad mysteries of cosmic intelligence anathema.
~ Stanley Kubrick, responding to criticism of 2001

Image result for cs lewis if we find ourselves

Question:

What piece of music awakens your heart, mind, and soul?

Celebrating Beauty: Day 4 – Kiki’s Delivery Service

Inspired by TheOriginalPhoenixThimblerig’s Ark, and Sunshine Lou, every day until Christmas, I’m going to write about one example of beauty that I have found, in order to counter the darkness that I see when I turn on the news.

Day 4, I am celebrating:

Kiki’s Delivery Service (1989).

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The story of a 13-year-old witch who, following tradition, leaves home for a year to go out into the world and find her calling in life, Kiki’s Delivery Service is a film that never fails to make me smile.

This isn’t a review.

This is a rave.

I can’t think of anything I dislike about this film.

From the plot, the characters, the setting, the animation, the soundtrack — it’s all excellent. (I watch the film in Japanese with English subtitles.)

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If you’re an artist of any kind — a baker, a painter, a writer. etc. — than watch this film. The characters will have you going “I know exactly how you feel.”

Even if you’re not an artist, Kiki’s Delivery Service is still a film that will have you doing this throughout it:

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Kiki’s Delivery Service doesn’t shy away from the more unpleasant realities of life.

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But: The film refuses to settle for horrors. It refuses to throw up its hands go “Why?! Oh the humanity!”

If the 24-hour news cycle is a poison, Kiki is a cure.

Image result for kiki's delivery service kiki and ursula

Question:

What film always puts you in a good mood?

Celebrating Beauty: Day 3 – A Quote

Inspired by TheOriginalPhoenixThimblerig’s Ark, and Sunshine Lou, every day until Christmas, I’m going to write about one example of beauty that I have found, in order to counter the darkness that I see when I turn on the news.

Day 3, I am celebrating:

A quote.

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While looking for pictures for my post Why Is Childbirth Painful?, I found a quote I’d been looking for, on and off, for months.

The first time I saw it, I made the mistake of not saving it to my computer or bookmarking the page. A mistake I am glad to have fixed. 🙂

The quote, from the anime Sound! Euphonium:

This quote conveys the kind of person that I want to be.

I want to be “possessed by a feverish desire to improve.”

I want to be the best person I can possibly be, and help as many people as I possibly can. If I do that, I believe I will be the person that God wants me to be.

How cool: Last night I had a conversation with Sunshine Lou about putting into action my desire to make the most of my life, and later that night I find a quote that perfectly expresses that desire: a quote that I’d been wanting to find again for a long time.

Go check out Sunshine Lou‘s post Find your freedom.

Questions:

What is something you were overjoyed to finally find? Were you looking for it when you found it?

And:

Are you “possessed by a feverish desire to improve”?