Top Ten Tuesday: Bookish Places I Want To Visit

toptentuesday

One of my favorite types of books to read are the ones where the setting becomes a character in the story. I just love flipping through a book that makes me want to walk through the setting and experience it all first-hand. Sometimes I end up not really caring for the book that much, but the setting can be presented in such a way that I don’t even care; just let me visit!

Top Ten Places Books Have Made Me Want To Visit:

London – Honestly, who hasn’t wanted to visit London because of a book they read or a movie they saw? London is the setting for so many stories over so many different time periods, the city itself has become timeless. I believe you can make London the setting for nearly any genre (except for maybe Westerns) and it would work. The book that made me want to visit London so badly was Meant to Be by Lauren Morrill. She does a fantastic job making London an actual character that I could practically imagine myself walking around a city I’ve never visited. Can’t wait to actually go there one day!!

Bath

Bath – I’m just going to cut right to it. Jane Austen makes me want to visit Bath. Even though Jane hated living in Bath, her final two novels, Persuasion and Northanger Abbey, are set there. I would love to visit this city and tour each of the areas Austen mentions in her novel. And then I would pretend to be Anne Elliot chasing down Captain Wentworth in front of The Royal Crescent ;)

New York City – I feel the same way about NYC that I do about London: it’s timeless. I love reading stories and watching movies that take place in the City. The one that’s popping up in my head at the moment is the movie You’ve Got Mail. We get to see all the seasons, but I love what Meg Ryan says: “Don’t you love New York in the fall?”

neverland

Neverland – I don’t know what I love most about Peter Pan’s Neverland: the waterfalls, the mermaid lagoon, the Lost Boys’s tree house… I would be totally content living there forever. Each time I visit Disneyworld/Disneyland I just want to ride Peter Pan’s Flight all day.

North Carolina – This is the current place Matt and I are looking to relocate to. Even though I visited multiple times when I was younger, the reason I want to live there now is because last Christmas I read at least 3 or 4 Nicholas Sparks novels. But hey! That state is gorgeous, whether you like Sparks novels or not (I happen to like them).

montana

The 1800s American West- Along with Nicholas Sparks novels I also have a soft spot for Historical Fiction novels that take place in the American West. I love everything about them & the west. When I was a sophomore in high school I visited Colorado for two weeks and fell in love. I’m trying to convince my husband to look for jobs there, but at least he’s on board with North Carolina ^

Omaha – Ok, I’ve never visited Omaha, or any other place in the Midwest, and I don’t really know what would be attractive about Nebraska, but the reason I want to visit is because of every single Rainbow Rowell novel. The way she talks about her city makes me want to go there and visit all of the places her characters have visited.

sherwood

Sherwood Forest & Nottingham – I have a huge literary crush on Robin Hood. Everyone who knows me in real life knows this. I want to marry Robin Hood, but even more than that I want to be him. Can’t you just see me walking down this pathway with Little John, singing “Oo-de-lally, oo-de-lally, golly what a day!”?

Washington State – Okay, I’m slightly embarrassed to admit the reason why I’d like to visit Washington…it’s because of Twilight. I’m not a fan of the books, even though I went through that period freshman year of college, but I really did like the setting of the series. I wouldn’t necessarily want to live in a place where it rains nearly every day, but I would like to visit Washington and maybe go camping there.

Prince Edward Island

Prince Edward Island – This should come as no surprise to any of you who regularly read my blog. Anne Shirley’s beloved Prince Edward Island is the place I want to visit more than any other in the whole world. Every time I read or watching Anne of Green Gables I immediately imagine myself walking along next to Anne as she braves the Haunted Wood or strolls down Lover’s Lane and especially when her and Diana visit Miss Lavendar! *sigh* I’m hoping to finally visit next year. Each summer in Charlottetown they host “Anne of Green Gables–The Musical”, and I WANT TO SEE IT SO BADLY!!! Until then I’ll just keep the soundtrack on my playlist ;)

What are some places–fictional or real–that you have wanted to visit because of a specific book you read? Would you like to visit any of the places on my list?

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Top Ten (Thurs)day: Favorite Films

toptentuesdayI was once again too preoccupied this week to post my Top Ten list on Tuesday, but I’m on vacation so I have a good excuse :)

This week’s meme was about ten things I like other than books, so I picked…

Top Ten Favorite Movies
(and yes, it’s in order!)

Pride and PrejudicePride and Prejudice (2005)
The story is based on Jane Austen’s novel about five sisters – Jane, Elizabeth, Mary, Kitty and Lydia Bennet – in Georgian England. Their lives are turned upside down when a wealthy young man (Mr. Bingley) and his best friend (Mr. Darcy) arrive in their neighborhood.

I wasn’t too into romances until nearly the end of high school, but when they started playing this movie on the TV all the time during my senior year of high school, I was hooked. Even though I read the book afterwards, I still love this version. Cinematography. Music. Acting (the rain scene is my favorite!) I could watch this movie all day, everyday.

TangledTangled (2010)
The magically long-haired Rapunzel has spent her entire life in a tower, but now that a runaway thief has stumbled upon her, she is about to discover the world for the first time, and who she really is.

This movie never fails to make me laugh! Firstly, it’s perfectly casted. It’s also entertaining for all ages and genders, since Rapunzel and Flynn are both main characters. And it’s another example of Alan Menken’s musical genius. This movie also holds a special place in my heart, since Matt and I danced to “I See the Light” for our first wedding dance <3

Beauty and the BeastBeauty and the Beast (1991)
Belle, whose father is imprisoned by the Beast, offers herself instead and discovers her captor to be an enchanted prince.

A classic. The first animated movie ever nominated for Best Picture. THE movie that got me into romances back in high school. I remember watching this movie multiple times EACH night one week when I was 16, crying when we think the Beast died, and smiling through my tears when he says, “Belle, it’s me.” Awwww <3 Again, wonderful music by Alan Menken and Howard Ashman, and on the newer releases there’s a fantastic documentary about the making of Beauty and the Beast that will make you cry.

Love ActuallyLove Actually (2003)
Follows the lives of eight very different couples in dealing with their love lives in various loosely interrelated tales all set during a frantic month before Christmas in London, England.

It doesn’t need to be Christmas for me to watch this movie. My friends and I in college would watch this all the time. My favorite story arch is Colin Firth’s, of course. I love that proposal! I also really like the Prime Minister’s plot too, although I HATE Billy Bob Thornton, and between his character and that one sex-obsessed guy, I’m convinced the director/writer hates America. But the rest of the movie is great :)

The Young VictoriaThe Young Victoria (2009)
A dramatization of the turbulent years of Queen Victoria’s rule, and her enduring romance with Prince Albert.

This is the movie that made me fall in love with Emily Blunt, and which has also made it hard for me to despise George Wickham in the 2005 Pride and Prejudice because that actor also plays the romantic Prince Albert in this movie. I adore the acting and the music in this movie, and I love all things about the Victorian-Era, so of course this movie belongs in that category.

Ever AfterEver After (1998)
With the sudden death of her loving father, Danielle is made a servant by her new stepmother. Still, Danielle grows up to be a happy and strong-willed young lady, and one day her path crosses that of handsome Prince Henry, who has troubles of his own at home.

Another movie I fell in love with during high school, this movie still gets me all dreamy-eyed. I was never really that into Cinderella, but this version features a stronger, stubborn heroine and the incredibly talented eyebrows acting of Anjelica Huston. Also, I will finally be visiting the main castle, Château de Hautefort, this summer!!

Star TrekStar Trek (2009)
The brash James T. Kirk tries to live up to his father’s legacy with Mr. Spock keeping him in check as a vengeful, time-traveling Romulan creates black holes to destroy one Federation planet at a time.

This is probably the most random entry on my list, but it is also probably the film I have watched the most. I’m not that well familiar with Star Trek. I’ve watched the original series and some of Voyager (because my dad watched it all the time), but I was never super into it. Not until I saw this movie in theaters. I knew it was going to become special to me after I found myself crying within the first 5 minutes. I love movies that make me cry. And soon after I would put this movie on every night to fall asleep to (I also did this with Young Victoria). My best friend and I both love this movie so we quote it to each other all the time :)

PenelopePenelope (2006)
A modern romantic tale about a young aristocratic heiress born under a curse that can only be broken when she finds true love with one who will love her faithfully.

I found this movie by mistake, but right away I loved it. It helps that I have a celebrity crush on James McAvoy :) if you like quirky romances, you’ll definitely love this one! Great acting with a fun modern fairy tale plot.

You've Got MailYou’ve Got Mail (1998)
Two business rivals hate each other at the office but fall in love over the internet.

I have always liked this movie, but it just recently made it onto my list of favorite movies. I went through a 90s chick flick phase last fall, and I probably watched You’ve Got Mail at least a dozen times. I love the Pride and Prejudice romance, and, although I feel like I’ve said this about every other movie on my list, the acting is wonderful. Plus Meg Ryan’s character owns a children’s bookstore! Love it :)

Meet the RobinsonsMeet the Robinsons (2007)
When an orphaned child genius named Lewis has his science fair project ruined by a mysterious time-traveling villain from the future, he must join forces with a strange boy in order to travel to the future, steal his invention back, and save a new-found family from a bleak future where mind control devices enslave the masses.

I feel like most people have never even heard of this geeky Disney movie, but I can’t get enough of it. The characters are so lovable and they make you laugh out loud all the time. It’s really a bunch of randomness tied up with a heartwarming bow, so if you need some warm, but not-necessarily-romantic fuzzies in your life, give the Robinson family a try :)

There you have it! So, what are some of your favorite moves? Do we have any in common?!

2013 Wrap Up Post: Most Interesting Search Engine Terms

Greetings from Florida! This post is coming from the good ‘ol Sunshine State, where I will be until tomorrow. Our trip to the States has been wonderful thus far, and I am quite sad that we will be headed back to la France in a week, but it will be nice to see our puppy again after so long.

This post is also coming from our brand new iPad that my parents surprised us with for Christmas! It is convenient writing from here :)

iPad

I was genuinely shocked!

Check back later next week for my “Visit to the States Bucket List” (yes I made one before flying over here–I know all you expats can relate), but for now enjoy this fun little piece all about the most interesting search terms that have brought readers to my blog. I can’t take credit for this idea, but hopefully it will bring you some smiles all the same :)

  • work is not very hard – I don’t know anyone who can agree with this one, especially not any of the teachers I work with!
  • interesting facts about parcheesi – umm…what?
  • what is the best portrayal of mr rochester in a jane eyre movie – ahh! I like this question, and I think I answered it in this post, but out of the four adaptations I watched, I would have to say Toby Stephens in the 2006 BBC adaptation was my favorite portrayal. BBC always does well :)
  • maleficent stained glass disneyland paris – don’t mind if I do:

    Maleficent

    Inside Sleeping Beauty’s Castle at Disneyland Paris

  • an american in france novel – maybe one day I’ll get around to writing one…but today is not that day.
  • jimmy durante song in who’s got mail – those songs are awesome, right?? Here are the links to As Time Goes By and Make Someone Happy
  • 5 month australian shepherd – well, if you insist :)
This is how he still likes to wake us up each morning :)

This is how he still likes to wake us up each morning :)

And there you have it! Maybe next year will turn up some funnier searches :) Hope you all are having a wonderful holiday season! I myself hope to get back into blogging more often in the new year; right now I’m too engrossed in library books!

Favorite Christmas Flicks

We made it safe and soundly to the States this week! It was a hectic last 48 hours in France, but everything managed to work itself out and here I am, sitting at my parents’ house getting ready to publish this post about my favorite Christmas movies!! I don’t know about you, but I need to get myself back into the Christmas spirit–before we left Tuesday morning, we had to take down our Christmas tree and pack up the ornaments. It’s a real tree, so fire hazard and all…but it really messed with me psychologically; I left France feeling like Christmas had already passed! Fortunately we were bombarded with Christmas decorations, lights, and music when we arrived in the airport here, but I wouldn’t mind watching a few of my favorite holiday films before the actual big day ;)

Rudolph

Looks like childhood :)

The Original Television Christmas Classics

Who doesn’t love these movies?? I loved watching them every year growing up. My two favorites were the stop-motion Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer (I just wanna cuddle with Rudolph–he’s so adorable!) and Frosty the Snowman. Just hearing Jimmy Durante singing the theme song makes me happy. Sadly, for years I was haunted by the villain who locked Frosty up in that greenhouse. He was so mean! But I still love it :)

How The Grinch Stole ChristmasHow The Grinch Stole Christmas

I love Dr. Seuss, and The Grinch is such a classic story, I don’t know anyone who doesn’t like to watch or read it. The old cartoon version is my favorite, but I also like the Jim Carrey version every now and again. And the Grinch song! So funny: “Mr. Gri-inch! You’re a three-decker sauerkraut and toadstool sandwich with arsenic sauce!” Yum…? ;)

Home Alone

“Keep the change, ya filthy animal!”

Home Alone

This will always be a Christmas classic :) Although the premise isn’t exactly realistic, does that really make it any less enjoyable?? My favorite part is definitely the “Rockin’ Around the Christmas” tree scene. I can’t explain why exactly, but I was always fascinated by the mechanics of it all. Wish I could have been that inventive as a kid, but then again…if my parents forgot me at home, I probably would have had a breakdown!

Jingle All the Way

“This is a sick world we live in! Sick people!”

Jingle All the Way

I think you had to watch this as a kid to be able to enjoy it as an adult, because if you decide to give it a chance now you’ll probably think it’s rather stupid. BUT, if you were like me and watched it repeatedly on VHS each December, you’d love to quote the lines every so often :) Plus, it’s bittersweet seeing Phil Hartman in his ridiculous character on-screen…

Elf

Elf

I loved watching Will Ferrel on SNL “back in the day”, but unfortunately I have never been a big fan of his films. Elf is the exception :) Besides all of the hilarious lines, there’s also Zooey Deschanel and Peter Dinklage (yes, I love him!) to enjoy. Plus, it has a wonderful soundtrack!

 

While You Were SleepingWhile You Were Sleeping

Forget Christmastime…I can watch this movie any time of year. I love these types of 90s chick flicks: the simple yet entertaining plot lines, the lovable and relatable actresses, the ever-so-stylish high-waisted jeans (as seen on Bill Pullman here). But seriously, I love this movie :)

You've Got MailYou’ve Got Mail

Another 90s chick flick I absolutely adore. What’s not to like about Meg Ryan and Tom Hanks? I also love Sleepless in Seattle as well, but I think between the two, You’ve Got Mail is my fav, despite the fact that it is incredibly dated (I mean, I don’t even know anyone who uses AOL nowadays). And technically this movie isn’t limited to the holiday season, but it’s still one of those feel-good comedies I like to watch while I’m curled up with a blanket and a cup of hot chocolate :)

The Shop Around the CornerThe Shop Around the Corner

This is actually the movie that You’ve Got Mail is a remake of (and they’re both based on a Hungarian play). Classic black-and-white film, Jimmy Stewart, Pride and Prejudice type love story: if you enjoy any of those three things, you’ll love this movie. Personally, I have a huge crush on Jimmy Stewart, and when my friend told me about this film I went home and watched it that very night. If you’ve seen either this film or You’ve Got Mail, it’s fun to compare the similar scenes that are in both of them. My favorite is the restaurant scene :)

It's A Wonderful Life

“Buffalo gals won’t you come out tonight and dance by the light of the moon…”

It’s A Wonderful Life

While we’re on the subject of Jimmy Stewart, I might as well talk about my absolute favorite Christmastime movie: It’s a Wonderful Life. There are so many things I adore about this film. Our new tradition is, right after Thanksgiving, to set up our Christmas tree and all of our decorations, and then eat Christmas cookies as we watch this movie. It’s a bit of a tear-jerker, but I always feel so incredibly happy after watching it!

Love Actually

We’re here!” “Wow, that really was just around the corner…” LOVE THIS SCENE

Love Actually

One of the best Christmas movies ever made (and another one that I watch all year round) is Love Actually. I love so many things about this film (with a couple of exceptions, like Billy Bob Thorton…gross): I love the way Hugh Grant says “Natalie”, I love Colin Firth’s story line, I love Emma Thompson!, and I especially love singing Bill Nighy’s character’s ridiculous Christmas song (and I do sing it, every time someone says, “I feel it in my fingers/toes/etc.). My best friends and I love watching this movie late at night as we squeal over the cheesy romance and laugh at the ridiculous British humor. If It’s a Wonderful Life is my all-time favorite Christmas film, Love Actually comes in at number 2!

What are your favorite holiday films? Did any of yours make my list?