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sunlit_music: (lauren bacall 06 by jordanna morgan)
Belated review of the beautiful film Howl's Moving Castle (directed by Hayao Miyazaki, and based on Diana Wynne Jones' much loved novel of the same name). The film can be watched on DVD in Japanese (with English subtitles) or the English dubs/voiceovers.

Plot: 18 year old shy and lovely Sophie Hatter works in a hat shop and has a chance encounter with a dashing young man who turns out to be none other than Howl the wizard. The Wicked Witch of the Waste lays a curse which turns Sophie into an old woman, as she is jealous of the attention Howl bestows on Sophie. Sophie journeys to Howl's home (a metallic contraption with moving chicken feet), pretends to be a cleaner and fights to break her curse. Turns out that she has the brains and courage to break powerful curses placed on Howl and his cranky fire demon Calcifer...

Read more... )

It's the little domestic details (such as the bouncing scarecrow bringing Sophie her walking stick and Calcifer munching on coal to sustain himself) that are delightful.

A magical film for people of all ages.
sunlit_music: (lauren bacall 06 by jordanna morgan)
Happy birthday to you, moonspinner! :) I don't know if you're still on LJ, but I hope that you're having a wonderful birthday.
sunlit_music: (lauren bacall 06 by jordanna morgan)
From Iraq Veterans Against the War: In the past 48 hours, armed militants have taken over cities all across northern Iraq. Today, Navi Pillay, the top UN human rights official, expressed "extreme alarm at what she termed summary executions, rape, reprisal killings and shelling of civilians.

Hundreds of human lives have been lost, and thousands of people have been injured. More than 300,000 people have been displaced - in addition to the 500,000 that have already been displaced since January after fighting broke out in Anbar Province.

Read more... )MADRE is collecting emergency donations for OWFI to help them relocate the residents of their women's shelter to safer places.You can make an emergency donation now by clicking here: https://app.etapestry.com/hosted/Madre/OnlineDonation.html?fund=ContributionsIndividual&campaign=Emergency%20and%20Disaster%20Relief&approach=2014%20Iraq%20Emergency%20Eappeal&title=Support%20Women%20Facing%20Violence%20in%20Iraq&cc1=2080

This emergency relocation effort will cost $25,000; OWFI cannot help these women meet their immediate needs without your help. Please consider making a donation today, and please share this email with your contacts. The safety of these women and their children depends on people like us.

Thank you in advance for your generosity.


In Solidarity,

Joyce, Matt, Maggie, Julia
IVAW Staff
sunlit_music: (lauren bacall 06 by jordanna morgan)
Happy belated birthday (for June 8th) again, Kate! :) I've wished you a happy birthday over at your blog earlier on 9th June. Hope you enjoy these links!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i5d5UNW6CNk&list=PLD380EECF01D2F5C5&index=2 Nigram Clavem. From the beautiful Kuroshitsuji soundtrack.

http://11thdoctor.deviantart.com/art/Doctor-Who-Monopoly-197446833 Fun! Doctor Who Monopoly Board.

http://www.redbubble.com/people/mikaelak/works/10124764-allons-y-totoro-alternate Hahaha! Doctor Who lending Totoro an umbrella. Actually, the redbubble website is great for checking out Doctor Who related fanart.

http://visitbath.co.uk/things-to-do/iford-manor-and-the-peto-garden-p41291 Stunning photos of Iford Manor and the Peto Gardens at Bath, UK.

http://visitbath.co.uk/things-to-do/bath-abbey-p24001 Beautiful photos of Bath Abbey in Bath, UK.
sunlit_music: (esmeralda by crazy dd)
Invisible is a powerful anthology edited by Jim C. Hines on sexism, disability rights, gender and sexual orientation. All of the articles are thought provoking, eloquent and intelligent. They're all moving - sometimes funny and uplifting - sometimes sad and heartbreaking. My personal favourites were the ones by Ada Hoffman ( on autism) and Michi Trota (on race). You can buy Invisible on Amazon and on Kindle. Highly recommended!
sunlit_music: (Sokka and Suki)
I've just made bruschetta! You can use different types of bread to make it (like Ciabatta bread or a French baguette). My recipe is a mixture of online recipes. You can find recipes at taste.com or www.simplyrecipes.com

Coat both sides of bread slices with 1 to 2 tablespoons of pure olive oil and 1 tablespoon of garlic paste/2 cloves of minced garlic. Toast bread in the oven at 210 degrees Celsius for 5 to 10 minutes.

Chop 8 grape tomatoes and 8 fresh basil leaves into fine pieces. (You can also use large cooked tomatoes. According to the FDA, it's not safe to eat large tomatoes or Roma tomatoes raw. However, the FDA states it is safe to eat cherry tomatoes or grape tomatoes raw). Coat the bread with the tomatoes and basil leaves. Add the tomatoes right before serving, or the bread will get soggy. Add a sprinkling of salt and pepper if you like ( this is optional). You can also add prosciutto meat or feta cheese. Serve and enjoy!
sunlit_music: (Sokka and Suki)
Happy belated birthday, Hannah! Hope that the rest of the year will bring you joy and contentment. :)

I thought this might interest you. Check out the Avatar: The Last Airbender characters as obento (food packed inside Japanese lunchboxes). Apologies if this has already been posted. :)

https://m.flickr.com/photos/54592704@N00/4056736580/
sunlit_music: (Sokka and Suki)
My Amazon review of Laura's Wolf (Werewolf Marines), by Lia Silver:
http://www.amazon.com.au/product-reviews/B00IU19DHM/ref=cm_cr_dp_see_all_btm?ie=UTF8&showViewpoints=1&SortBy=SubmissionDateDescending

A moving, beautiful romance with sensitive depictions of PTSD, great women and POC characters. Warmly recommended. Book 2 features a POC hero. :)

My Amazon review of Pen Pal, by Francesca Forrest:

http://www.amazon.com.au/product-reviews/B00I8XDHLA/ref=do_top=_cm_cr_act_text?ie=UTF8&show view points=1

A wise, deeply touching examination of cultural minorities, family, friendship and religions. Also highly recommended. Both books are unforgettable. :)
sunlit_music: (Sokka and Suki)
Edited on 5th April, 2014 to add: This review has been cross posted to Amazon.com.au

http://www.amazon.com.au/product-reviews/B00FORXE6G/ref=dp_top_cm_cr_acr_txt?ie=UTF8&showViewpoints=1

Angel in the Attic(book one: Werewolf in the Kitchen) is a lovely, fun queer romance by Rebecca Tregaron. It has lots of wit, humour, some mystery, warmth, and great characters. The romance is sweet and sexy, and I liked the clever world building regarding Angels' food taboos and their own astrology. (I also got excited at the mention of Asian mythological beings - apsaras!) Loved how characters from diverse backgrounds are treated respectfully in a non preachy way.

The cooking scenes were so beautifully described they made me hungry! I loved how Carolyn (the protagonist) is so passionate about cooking. There are some great tips on cooking in the book as well. :)

There are even recipes ( for the dishes mentioned in the novel) at the end of the book. :)

I laughed out loud so much reading this - so many hilarious parts! Highly recommended. :)

You can download it onto your Kindle or Kindle app on your mobile phone. You can also buy and read it online/download it at Smashwords.com .

Edited to fix various typos and add that the author is working on the second book (there will be 2 more books).
sunlit_music: (Sokka and Suki)
Happy birthday, vortalcord! I don't know if you're still on lj. But I hope your birthday and the rest of this year is filled with laughter and joy for you and your loved ones. :)
sunlit_music: (Sokka and Suki)
Note to self (and anyone else interested in baking tips):

Honey is not needed for the crust/cake base It makes the crust/base a bit too sweet.

Spread mashed biscuits/butter mixture evenly and thickly across baking tray to form a crust/base that won't crumble while being baked. I put the base / crust in the freezer for 30 minutes prior to adding the cream cheese/flour/egg/sugar mixture to the baking tray. This is to prevent the cheese mixture from seeping into the base and crumbling it.

You need 250 to 300 grams of melted chocolate to create the marbling effect (chocolate swirling pattern). The chocolate needs to be thoroughly melted to swirl properly. Heat 4 small blocks of chocolate (28 grams) in the microwave for 90 seconds. WARNING:If you heat 4 grams of chocolate for 2 minutes, it gets burnt. Repeat this step until you have heated 250 grams of chocolate. I couldn't find cooking chocolate, but I strongly recommend using it for baking cakes / making desserts if you can find it. :)
sunlit_music: (Sokka and Suki)
Recipe for fried bananas:

There are several ways you can cook fried bananas. This dish is popular around the world (including Vietnam, Thailand, the Philippines, and I think parts of South America).

Preparation time: 1 minute

Cooking time: 12 minutes. Note: Cooking times vary depending on a what kind of saucepan you use. I used a saucepan made of "black diamond(??!!)/stone", which apparently speeds up cooking.

Ingredients:

- 3 to 4 large ripe or slightly overripe bananas

- 3 to 5 tablespoons of olive oil

- ground cinnamon (small bottles can be bought at the Supermarket)

- ice cream can be served with the bananas (optional)

Instructions:

Slice bananas on a cutting board into small slices.

Add oil to saucepan. Once oil starts bubbling, it's ready for cooking. Add bananas to saucepan and stir.

Turn over banana slices regularly(every 10 or 20 seconds works for me).

The less slices you use in the saucepan, the quicker they'll cook. :) And vice versa. Banana slices are ready when they are slightly browned/darker yellow on all sides and soft.

Serve bananas with cinnamon and ice cream, and enjoy! :)
sunlit_music: (esmeralda by heartilly)
SPOILERS below for Gundam Wing. :)




I've been rewatching the Japanese anime series Gundam Wing on DVD (which my horrifying iPhone Spell check repeatedly insists is "Fun Am Wing." What IS a Fun Am, exactly?")

Read more... )

The eccentric scientists cackling evilly crack me up. XD

Wu Fei screaming, "DAMN YOUUUUUUUU!!!!" Into the night has got to be the most hilarious thing. Ever.

Wu Fei: *screams at hyenas surrounding him in a circle* YOU ARE WEAK!

Hyenas: * slink away*

It would have been funnier at that point if the hyenas had chosen to eat him instead of leaving.

Also, there have been so many times the characters scream, "It's a GUNDAM!" I burst out laughing whenever I hear it.

Does anyone else have the version of Series/Operation Ten where the introduction (with the catchy theme song) shows Trowa silently screaming in anger at the viewer? Most. Hilarious. Scene. EVER. XD
sunlit_music: (esmeralda by heartilly)
SPOILERS FOR BOOKS BELOW.

My favourite quotes:

Read more... )
sunlit_music: (esmeralda by heartilly)
Happy birthday, rachelmanija! :D Hope that you have a wonderful time. Have fun and relax!
sunlit_music: (esmeralda by heartilly)
Happy birthday to just2behappy80 if you're still reading this! :) Hope you have a lovely time for the rest of the year.
sunlit_music: (esmeralda by heartilly)
Hilarious BatDad video:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YlVi0noRr-o

What it says on the tin. ;)

And now for my favourite winning Youtube comments!

vor1010: "By the expressions on his wife's face, I'm thinking he'll soon be Single Batfather".

MICROmor: "Not the Dad that gotham wants, but the Dad that gotham needs."

sunlit_music: (esmeralda by heartilly)
http://www.abc.net.au/environment/articles/2013/09/11/3845626.htm

Air Vice-Marshal Neil Hart is head of the Joint Capability Coordination Division at the Department of Defence. His responsibilities include examining the potential impacts of global changes on the preparedness of the Australian Defence Force.

He says that changes in the global climate system have the potential to "exacerbate existing problems" through flooding of low-lying regions, more frequent and severe natural disasters, and shifting rainfall. This could lead to loss of food production in some areas and "climate-driven large-scale human migration".

"Taken together, these factors point to the potential for an increased demand for humanitarian assistance, disaster relief and stabilisation operations over coming decades," he says.

The Australian Government's latest Defence White Paper, published in May, found that global energy, food and water resources were under pressure from population growth, rising affluence and climate change.

"As a frequent first responder to national and international emergencies, (Australian) Defence needs to be prepared for some of the consequences of global climate system changes, such as potentially increased demands for the Australian Defence Force to undertake humanitarian and disaster relief responses both domestically and across the region."


Climate change is real. And it's a damn big problem.

What you can do: contact the new Minister for Climate Change, Greg Hunt here:

http://www.greghunt.com.au/ContactGreg.aspx

Thanks for your support!
sunlit_music: (esmeralda by heartilly)
http://www.abc.net.au/news/2013-09-19/act-to-introduce-marriage-equality-bill-into-legislative-assemb/4967000
HELL YES. :D Go, ACT! Go, go, go , go, go!!

Basically the Australian Capital Territory's Marriage Equality Bill supports same sex marriage. The current Prime Minister Tony Abbott is opposed to this legislation, but here's to hoping that it'll pass!
I heard about this on Triple J radio station and I am VERY happy about this. There was a standing ovation when the bill was passed! And so there should be. Damn it, Australians have fought hard for this!

From the article:
Read more... ) I'm a Christian, and I support gay marriage. There are Christians and other people from different religions / non religious beliefs that support gay marriage too. I am SICK and tired of people saying that gay couples shouldn't get married because children they won't have a female and male role models. Chidren can have male and female role models in their families if they have gay parents! Through their cousins, uncles, grandparents, aunts, godparents, and siblings.

On a different tangent, I am sick of people online and on the radio sending out the message that gay people can't be good parents. Many orphans need loving, responsible families to raise them. And there are plenty of caring and mature gay couples willing to care for children too.
sunlit_music: (esmeralda by heartilly)
Happy belated birthday to beatonna and deathnchocolate! :D I hope you both had an exciting time with your loved ones.

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