Monday, April 11, 2011

Bits and Pieces of Our Days

I had a lovely post planned for Poetry Friday last week, but couldn't get it done because we were without internet access most of that morning. I have to admit that most of that morning felt like a month and a half. I am so used to high-speed-internet-instant-access-communication-at-my-fingertips ... it's always good to have it ruthlessly yanked from me in order to readjust my perspective. I was trying to make plans with two friends and their kids and I envisioned myself driving from house to house to confirm the meeting place when I remembered that I do have a phone. I picked it up and guess what? It worked. Sometimes those ancient inventions come in handy even as we chuckle at their quaint charm.


Anne-with-an-e took the ACT test on Saturday. She is Glad. It's. Over. We unschoolish night owls don't generally choose to be up at 6:30 on a Saturday morning, readying ourselves for something that involves math. The last time we did that was, oooh, let's see ... Never? Always a new adventure when one is homeschooling high school. At any rate, I'm really proud of her and she survived.


I am really proud of Betsy, too. Have I mentioned that my middle daughter has written two short novels? Two. I haven't written a single novel yet. I have some catching up to do. So fun to see her tackling longer works and now revising and editing. She brings a chapter of her novel to our writing group every week and she also has an online writing pal (Katie! She loves you!) with whom she exchanges work. Recently Betsy, Anne, and two other friends starting kicking around the idea of working together to write a novel. The authorial fun just keeps coming.


We finally saw Tangled. It was here-and-gone so quickly from our little local theater that we hadn't had the chance to see it.  So the girls bought the dvd and Atticus and I watched it with them last night. Great movie -- themes of light and love and sacrifice. Highly recommended.

(Eta: More discussion here.)

Other movies we've seen lately:

Get Low (Atticus and me) Beautifully filmed. Touching and lovely. But then, Robert Duvall and Bill Murray could sit in front of a camera and discuss their favorite heartburn relief remedies and I'd watch it.

Ramona and Beezus (whole family) Don't get me started. It wasn't horrible, and yet it was. Selena Gomez as Beezus? Kissing Henry Huggins? Really? This is a problem.

Elf  (whole family) Yes. We, too, couldn't believe we'd never seen it. "You sit on a throne of lies!" is now a frequently heard emphatic whisper around here.

Flipped (older girls and me) Loved it. So very sweet. Here's a great review from Roger Ebert.

The Goodbye Girl (older girls) They loved it as much as I've always loved it. They were delighted when I told them that Quinn Cummings is not only alive but has a hilarious and wonderfully written blog. As a matter of fact, if Anne-with-an-e's ACT score is delightfully high, I'll credit the QC Report. Anne read the rabbit posts while she ate breakfast that morning and her laughter had a whole lot to do with leaving the house in a buoyant mood.


The Bookworm said...

I didn't realise therewas Ramona and Beezus movie. (Kissing? Ewww!! Don't think Ramona would approve.). Cherub is just discovering Ramona and loving her. We are half way through the first book as bedtime reading.

Christine Marciniak said...

Sounds like you've been busy! And Katie loves Betsy too!

Danae said...

Love all of those movies (except Ramona and Beezus and Tangled, both of which I have never seen).

Rochelle said...

Thanks for the warning about Ramona and Beezus.
Beezus and Henry kissing???
Say it ain't so!

Meanwhile, I've started re-reading (make that re-re-re-re etc-reading)
the Ramona books.

Kim Barger said...

Thanks for the tip on Tangled. I know we'll watch it sooner now, rather than later. It has literally been so long since we've watched a grown up movie, I can't remember what the last film we saw was. Right now we have a Narnia and a Padre Pio bio waiting.

Anonymous said...

You hadn't seen Elf? You guys are a bunch of cotton-headed ninny-muggins!


Karen E. said...

Kim, you also might want to read Steven Greydanus' review, found here.

I don't completely agree with his take on it, though I think it's worth discussing it with the kids. From his review:

Tangled, then, is yet another animated tale of youthful rebellion against unreasonable authoritarian parenting. That Mother Gothel isn’t Rapunzel’s real mother is something of a technicality, particularly since her true parents are symbolic figureheads rather than developed characters (I don’t think either of them gets a word of dialogue).

In fairness, Tangled offers one of the more intriguing instances of the theme. Rapunzel is a dutiful daughter who regards Mother Gothel with real (if misplaced) filial piety, who hugs her and repeats a childhood ritual profession of mutual love. It’s monstrous and smothering (literally so; Mother’s puffy sleeves smother Rapunzel when they hug), but recognizable and human. When, on the verge of her 18th birthday, Rapunzel finally, tentatively rebels against the long-standing taboo keeping her in her tower, she’s wildly conflicted, swinging back and forth between euphoria and weeping self-recrimination.

This is not, then, the typical parental authoritarianness or youthful defiance of, say, The Little Mermaid. Still, in the context of the widespread trope in animated films of unreasonable parents and heroic filial rebellion, parents may reasonably find it troubling. I wish the genre provided more images of positive parents (refreshing exceptions include The Princess and the Frog, Ponyo, Kung Fu Panda and The Incredibles), but I wouldn’t necessarily want animated films never to depict problematic parent–child relationships, and I like the take in Tangled better than most.

I can understand why the Gothel portrayal might give some parents pause, but I do think it matters that Gothel isn't Rapunzel's real mother. Her selfish and controlling ways are worth discussing with the kids.

And Lisa, yes, we are a bunch of cotton-headed ninny-muggins! :)

Karen E. said...

Oops -- here is the correct link for Greydanus' review.