Month: October 2015

Friday Five: Songs about Halloween and My Costumes

Hi friends!  It’s Friday so that means it is time for the Friday Five!  This week Sara has allowed us to pick anything we want with the topic Halloween.  I decided to be fairly straight forward and did 5 Songs About Halloween.  I hope you enjoy the songs.  If you do please give it a thumbs up!   Happy Halloween!

I’ve always enjoyed Halloween especially when I was little. My Mom had a rule she would make us a costume every other year so when it was our turn it was always a real treat.

sleeping beauty me
Here I am as Aurora and my sister as Merrywether. Aren’t they amazing costumes my Mom made?

Over the years I’ve always tried to do something fun for Halloween whether it was just dressing up at the office or going out with my friends.  It’s just a fun, creative time.

When I went as Tracy Turnblat from Hairspray
When I went as Tracy Turnblat from Hairspray
My Halloween costume
A geisha princess one year
One year I was Dorthy ruby slippers and all!
I was Professor McGonagal one year from Harry Potter
I was Professor McGonagal one year from Harry Potter
Last year I was Mike from Monsters Inc and Monsters University!

So this year I continued the tradition and was Elsa from Frozen.  It was pretty fun.


elsa me


NaNoWriMo Tag and My Writing Process

So NaNoWriMo is coming and I feel a little unprepared but am excited!  I filmed this video about NaNoWriMo video today and it included a tag.  In the video I go into my process for writing and has little segments of all 3 of my books (this will be my 4th year doing NaNoWriMo).

Are you doing NaNoWriMo this year?  What are you writing about?  What strategies do you use to finish the challenge?  I would love to discuss it in the comments.  It is going to be a challenge for me this year with everything else I have going on but luckily I am a pretty fast writer so it should be ok.  I will certainly do my best.

If you are doing NaNoWriMo please follow me on the NaNoWriMo website and let’s support each other!

Happy writing!!

Star Wars Ep 2: Attack of the Clones Review and Discussion

Check out my second Star Wars review of Episode 2: Attack of the Clones. My friends Jeremy and Abby joined me to talk about this less than stellar film. Even if you hate the film like I do I think you will enjoy our discussion. 2 weeks we will be talking about Ep 3 Revenge of the Sith.

Rachel's Reviews

Hey guys!  Well, my friends Abby, Jeremy and I have made it through the cinematic masterpiece that is Star Wars Episode 2: Attack of the Clones.  In truth I really hate the film but on the rewatch I found some things to praise and I had a great time talking about it with my friends (doing these discussions after bad movies would make movie-going so much more pleasant!)

Here is our discussion and even if you hate the movie I think you will really enjoy it.  I’m surprised we had so much to talk about it but look at this as more of a podcast style than a review.

As I am doing with all these Star Wars reviews I wrote up a little summary of the film.


Taking place 10 years after events of Phantom Menace, Attack of the Clones focuses on mounting threats to the Republic. Padme…

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I Have an Idea for Nanowrimo

nanowrimo2013Hey guys!  Well I am very excited to tell you I finally have an idea for this years Nanowrimo challenge!  This is the National Novel Writing Month and the challenge is to write a 50,000 word novel in the month of November.  This will be my 4th year participating and honestly it kind of crept up on me. The previous years I had an idea ready to go I had been thinking about all year but this year with my job, 2 blogs, and youtube channel I kind of forgot about Nanowrimo.  There was a side of me wondering if I should even try to do it this year, but a friend of mine encouraged me to give it a go so I figured why not!  But I still couldn’t think of a good idea…

Then last week I was watching the show American Greed about ponzi schemes and swindlers and I got the elusive idea.  The show was profiling a man who ran a ponzi scheme and got kind of exposed throwing a lavish party for his daughter on the show My Super Sweet 16 on MTV.  While watching the thought occurred to me ‘what must it be like to be that girl?’.  To go from your father throwing you this insane party with rockstars performing and Mercedes to drive to not long after it aired your father getting arrested and convicted for fraud.  In addition, many people saw her throwing away their money they had invested with her father.  I’m sure there must have been a lot of anger and outraged at the daughter since she was the one the show focused on.  It struck me as an interesting character to write a story about.

Again I asked the question “what must it be like to be that girl?”.  I wonder if she hates her father or maybe she always hated her father and he made her go on the show?  Maybe she just went on the show to spend time with him since he was always at the office?  Maybe she got caught up in it and had a change of heart after seeing the suffering?  Maybe she lost friends. a boyfriend, over the whole thing?  I just feel like there is something to talk about and will make for a good book.

What do you think of this idea for a story?  Do you have any suggestions for the story?  I would love to hear them.  Are you guys doing Nanowrimo? What are you writing about? If any of you are in Utah I would love to a do a write in or meet up.

Last year my book ended up being very intense and it was kind of tough to write but I learned a lot as well.  Hopefully this story is more inspirational but we will see where the words take me!

This is the girl on the Super Sweet 16.

Here’s a little thing about the Dad


Friday Five: Songs from One Artist- Josh Groban

Hey guys!  It’s time for the Friday Five and this week Sara has asked us to profile an artist and pick 5 of his or her songs we like.  I debated on who to chose but she said we’d be doing this again so decided to go with Josh Groban.  I love Josh Groban partly because he has the voice of an angel but also for giving me one of the best concert experiences of my life.

I’ve seen Josh 3 times but the 2nd time was in 2007 before I started this blog.  I had gotten tickets way up in the bleachers and the only reason I was able to get those was because I had joined Josh’s fan club.  At this time in my life I was pretty depressed and miserable with my job and life, and just needed a pick-me-up you might say.  So I went to the concert with my roommate Camille and sitting way up high I was excited but it was a little hard to hear.

His opening act was awful but then they announced they were filming the dvd for his Awake album that night!  I was very excited and went and got a soda.  I’m not sure if it was my wearing the fan club t-shirt but a lady came up to me and asked if I wanted to change seats.  They needed to fill up the lower bowl seats for the DVD.  I said yes and grabbed Camille and we ended up on one of the top rows!  It was so amazing to go from zero to hero in a few minutes.  I was able to go right up to the stage and he kind of gave me a high five.  It was so thrilling and I think even more so because it was unexpected.  Felt like winning the lottery for one night!

Afterwards I was happy for like 2 weeks which was a long stretch for that time in my life.  I think it was one of those tender mercies sometimes God throws us along the way.  Not a big deal but just something to help us keep the faith.

So that’s why Josh Groban will always be meaningful to me.  Plus, his voice is perfection to boot!

Let me know what you think of my picks and video (if not subscribed please do!)..  And have you ever been to a memorable concert?  Share below.  Thanks so much!

Back to the Future Marathon Event

Yesterday I had a super fun experience.  If you didn’t know October 21, 2015 is the day that Marty and Doc go back to the future in the 2nd film.

1031852_1280x720So to mark the day the Salt Lake Film Society had a Where’s My Hoverboard event where we got to watch all 3 Back to the Future films in a marathon watching session.   It was well organized event with of course popcorn and soda!

back to the future activity2They had a food truck with Doc Brown’s chili (and burgers).  It was very delicious.

back to the future activity4They made cool pins and these awesome t-shirts.

back to the future activity3They had contests and prizes and I won a blu-ray of Furious 7.

back to future activity2It was so much fun to be with a boisterous crowd for the films and will definitely go down as one of my favorite movie memories.  I am going to keep my eye out for of these kind of movie events.  It adds a lot to the movie experience.  Here is my thoughts on all 3 films.   If you aren’t subscribed to my channel I think you will really enjoy the content I am making:

You can also read my written reviews of all 3 films here

Thanks to Salt Lake Film Society for the great event and I hope to attend many more in the future.

Phantom Menace Review and Discussion

Check out my first Star Wars review of Episode 1: Phantom Menace. My friends Jeremy and Abby joined me for a google chat about the movie. I’d love for you all to take a look as it was my first time hosting a live google hang out. I think it went pretty well.

Rachel's Reviews

phantom menace99Hi guys!  So yesterday marked the start of my new Star Wars series and I am going to be doing reviews on this blog plus a new web series on my youtube channel.  I am going to be discussing with my friends Abby and Jeremy each of the Star Wars movies and yesterday we tackled Episode 1: Phantom Menace.  It was my first time doing a Live Google Hangout and I’m really happy with how it turned out.

Most people know I was not a fan of the Star Wars prequels but I have always stood up for Phantom Menace a little bit because Attack of the Clones seemed so much worse at the time  (we will see what I think this week).  But I have to say on the rewatch Phantom Menace was a lot worse than I remembered. It has some decent sequences but at the core it…

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Friday Five: Songs from Musicals

This weeks Friday Five is here and we are talking about one of my favorite genres of music- Broadway musicals!

It was actually kind of tough for me to narrow down my love of show tunes into 5 songs.  So, I decided to pick songs from shows I’ve seen on Broadway.  That left me 11 musicals to pick from and I feel like my songs show a variety and are from 5 shows I really love.

I don’t know if I would say they are my favorite Broadway songs but they are in the discussion for sure.  But here are my picks (in no particular order:

The Beauty Is from Light in the Piazza- musical about a young mentally special needs American girl going to Italy with her Mother and falling in love with an Italian. The musical in Light combines melodic and non-melodic sequences in the same song in a way I’ve never seen before.  Also the way they use harmonies and change keys within the songs gives them a uniquely beautiful song.

Stars from Les Miserables- Javert is one of my favorite villains because he isn’t really a villain.  He believes in justice which is a noble attribute but he  forgets about mercy.  In Stars he sings about his beliefs in upholding the law.

As We Stumble Along from Drowsy Chaperon- This show makes fun of musicals and is the funniest Broadway show I’ve ever seen.  It was also brilliant the way the story and the jokes came alive in the apartment of the Man in the Chair. This song lampoons the anthem songs of the modern musical and is very funny.

Defying Gravity from Wicked- As we saw from my last entry I love Idina Menzel and I think Stephen Schwartz did a great job with this prequel to Wizard of Oz (no small task considering every other film version has been terrible).  Defying Gravity is the most difficult song of the show and shows Idina’s amazing belt skills.  It is also the emotional heart of the show where Elphaba has made her decision and there is no going back.

76 Trombones from Music Man- Meredith Wilson’s Music Man will always have a special place in my heart because I saw this musical when I went to New York with my cousin Lisa.  She died 4 months after that trip. But even without that it is a story of redemption and how even a con man isn’t a total lost cause. Plus, there are some really catchy music to boot!

So that is my five choices.  What would you pick for your favorite songs from Broadway musicals?

Am I a Youtube (or Blogging) Failure?

Today I posted a video on my youtube channel talking about what constitutes success and failure on youtube.  It is easy to get too focused on the views and feel like a failure if something doesn’t get many hits.  I think the same things applies to blogging.

It can be a little frustrating when a post I work for days on gets little views when a post on BBQ sauce gets thousands of hits a month.  Sometimes I wish it was reversed but the important thing is the community I get to interact with and all I learn along the way.  If you are a blogger and don’t get the hits you would like stop thinking about it.  Just enjoy the journey and if you write from that place you are more likely to get views than trying to calculate what people will like.

I can’t say enough how much I appreciate all the support you guys have given me over the years.  I am on year 7 of this blog.  Can you believe it?  I can’t.  This and the movie blog/channel are the best things I do in my life.  It has helped me figure out so many obstacles in my life.  I’ve laughed.  I’ve cried.  I’ve shared my heart and learned to write a little bit better with every post.  Thank you so much!