Tuesday, December 22, 2015

The Literary Nunnery, Ep. 44: In which Leslie is a fashion icon



How are you guys? I'm good.



Books featured in this video:

Ash & Bramble by Sarah Prineas

-also-

Soundless by Richelle Mead

A Wicked Thing by Rhiannon Thomas

Winter by Marissa Meyer

Friday, December 18, 2015

The Literary Nunnery, Ep. 43: In which Leslie's not sick



Astute followers of my life can tell there's approximately a month lag between filming and posting, which I guess means is time to start posting twice a week again.



Books featured in this video:

Rebel Mechanics by Shanna Swendsen

-also-

Legacy of Kings by Eleanor Herman

The Shepherd's Crown by Terry Pratchett

Wednesday, December 16, 2015

and the words, they're everything [12]

In honor of the first snow, here's a bunch of WWIS thingers about me!


My autobiography subtitle


We actually played Don't Eat Pete for FHE a couple months ago and I didn't cheat for once. I also lost immediately (something that I could.not.handle when I was a kid)

I've been going social dancing regularly for a while and I'm still not sure how I feel about lindy hop.

Subtitle of my cookbook

Subtitle of my...fashion magazine? No, this is about actions not appearances. I am always impeccably dressed

I'm hilarious.

I actually think this is why I should teach Gospel Doctrine

NOT ME

Friday, December 11, 2015

The Literary Nunnery, Ep. 42: in which Leslie chokes



Hey so turns out Rae Carson made up that part of the hymn it's not a real lyric [citation needed, I didn't do a ton of research on this]. So I took the opportunity to make up my own lyrics.



Books featured in this video:

Walk on Earth a Stranger by Rae Carson



Also

While You Were Gone by Amy K. Nichols

Illuminae by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff

This Song Will Save Your LIfe by Leila Sales

Friday, December 4, 2015

The Literary Nunnery, Ep. 41: in which Leslie has opinions on marriage





Things that don't matter: me skipping a week before uploading this. It was Thanksgiving.



Books featured in this video:

Magnus Chase, sort of

Sleeper and the Spindle by Neil Gaiman

Rook by Sharon Cameron

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

that kind of grateful [03]

Home stretch!

21: I'm grateful for my selfish service.
22: I'm grateful for a baked potato
23: I'm grateful for a little bit of comedy
24: I'm grateful for hot chocolate
25: I'm grateful for
26: I'm grateful for an eye for green signs
27: I'm grateful for hiking with my dad (he told me to say that)
28: I'm grateful for my snowiest boots
29: I'm grateful for music times
30: I'm grateful for not throwing up

What a great month!

I need to think of something similar to do for December. Ideas?

Monday, November 30, 2015

followers of my faith [Mormon Monday 89]

Last night we had our second annual Messiah concert (well, it's been going for 24 years, but it's the second year I participated). I love the music and the words celebrating Christ.

My favorite part of this video is the quotation of the words of Isaiah. They are great.




Monday, November 23, 2015

followers of my faith [Mormon Monday 88]

Those who have a broken heart and a contrite spirit are willing to do anything and everything that God asks of them, without resistance or resentment. We cease doing things our way and learn to do them God's way instead. In such a condition of submissiveness, the Atonement can take effect and true repentance can occur. The penitent will then experience the sanctifying power of the Holy Ghost, which will fill them with peace of conscience and the joy of reconciliation with God. In a wondrous union of divine attributes, the same God who teaches us to walk with a broken heart invites us to
rejoice and to be of good cheer. (x)


Saturday, November 21, 2015

that kind of grateful [02]

Here we are again.

11: I'm grateful for forgetting to offer pumpkin bread
12: I'm grateful for a canceled dinner to assuage my guilt
13: I'm grateful for technology that connects
14: I'm grateful for a trip to Provo
15: I'm grateful for singing in choir
16: I'm grateful for the Christmas trees at work and I don't care who is judging
17: I'm grateful for good leads
18: I'm grateful for guy friends
19: I'm grateful for a moment alone in a warm room
20: I'm grateful for not being afraid of needles


Friday, November 20, 2015

The Literary Nunnery, Ep. 40: In which Leslie sometimes just doesn't fee...



There are a lot of good books in the world. Sometimes I choose not to invest in some of them. I only feel a little bad.



Books featured in this video:

Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo

Also:

Dreamers Pool by Juliet Marillier

Walk On Earth a Stranger by Rae Carson

Ash and Bramble by Sarah Prineas

Friday, November 13, 2015

The Literary Nunnery, Ep. 39: In which Leslie keeps it short





I don't know what was going on with my hair in this video. Also I have more books checked out, I just forgot to transfer the pictures from one computer to the other in time. I'll show 'em next week.



Books featured in this video:

Everything Everything by Nicola Yoon



Pictured:

Hunter by Mercedes Lackey

Hello, Goodbye, and Everything in Between by Jennifer E. Smith

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

that kind of grateful [01]

Listen. I know this gets done a lot. I hate to be a follower. But...I'm going to reprise what I did 6 years ago and it'll be lots of fun for all of us! But mostly me, because I'm the only one that knows what I'm really saying with my gratitude. So here's my first ten days of gratitude (ten, because it's a nice round number and I don't have to figure out what to do with the extra two days if I did it weekly).

1: I'm grateful for a friend to empathize with my super important woes
2: I'm grateful for a memorized hymn
3: I'm grateful for a cognitive coupon
4: I'm grateful for a bad movie made better with friends
5: I'm grateful for that Walk the Moon song
6: I'm grateful for cake and ice cream
7: I'm grateful for HSM
8: I'm grateful for old neighbors
9: I'm grateful for an unexpected extended stay
10: I'm grateful for the ability to update and be updated


Monday, November 9, 2015

followers of my faith [Mormon Monday 87]

Guess who said this lovely little quotation. (You can find out the answer by pressing the x at the end of the paragraph...but you will probably be able to tell who it was.)

The Lord has placed currents of divine influence in your life that will lead you along the individual plan He would have you fulfill here on earth. Seek through the Spirit to identify it and carefully follow that direction that the Lord has put in your life. Align yourself with it. Choose, willingly, to exercise your agency to follow it. Do not be overcome by concentrating solely on today, its challenges, difficulties, and opportunities. Such preoccupations must not totally capture your attention so as to consume your life. Oh, how I would encourage you to weave deeply into the fabric of your soul the recognition that your life now is a part of a much bigger plan the Lord has for you. You lived part of it in the premortal existence. You were valiant there and came here because you  wanted to grow and enjoy greater happiness. What you decide to do now will affect how well you fulfill that divine, personal plan He has for you. (x)
Choose the right.

Friday, November 6, 2015

The Literary Nunnery, Ep. 38: In which Leslie for real has a guest



This one is long. I couldn't bear to cut any footage at all so you get everything! But it's fun. We're darling.



Books featured in this video:

The Sword of Summer (Magnus Chase Book 1) by Rick Riordan

The Fellowship of the Ring by J. R. R. Tolkien

Monday, November 2, 2015

followers of my faith [Mormon Monday 86]

In this passage in Numbers 17, the Israelites are trying to rebel against Aaron as their leader, so the Lord gives Moses some direction to show that Aaron is His chosen leader.

1 And the Lord spake unto Moses, saying,
2 Speak unto the children of Israel, and take of every one of them a rod according to the house of their fathers, of all their princes according to the house of their fathers twelve rods: write thou every man’s name upon his rod.
3 And thou shalt write Aaron’s name upon the rod of Levi: for one rod shall be for the head of the house of their fathers.
4 And thou shalt lay them up in the tabernacle of the congregation before the testimony, where I will meet with you.
5 And it shall come to pass, that the man’s rod, whom I shall choose, shall blossom: and I will make to cease from me the murmurings of the children of Israel, whereby they murmur against you.
6 ¶And Moses spake unto the children of Israel, and every one of their princes gave him a rod apiece, for each prince one, according to their fathers’ houses, even twelve rods: and the rod of Aaron was among their rods.
7 And Moses laid up the rods before the Lord in the tabernacle of witness.
8 And it came to pass, that on the morrow Moses went into the tabernacle of witness; and, behold, the rod of Aaron for the house of Levi was budded, and brought forth buds, and bloomed blossoms, and yielded almonds.
9 And Moses brought out all the rods from before the Lord unto all the children of Israel: and they looked, and took every man his rod.
10 ¶And the Lord said unto Moses, Bring Aaron’s rod again before the testimony, to be kept for a token against the rebels; and thou shalt quite take away their murmurings from me, that they die not.
We can learn from this passage that we can receive a confirming witness that the Lord's chosen leaders are called by Him.

This is a nice video.



 

Friday, October 30, 2015

The Literary Nunnery, Ep. 37: in which Leslie sings



I've changed the format of these videos just a little tiny bit. Happy to hear feedback on the change. And also on when I changed the part in my hair to the other side! Feel free to feed me back on that one.


Books featured in this video:
Galgorithm by Aaron Karo
Things We Know by Heart by Jessi Kirby

Also
The Truth About My Success
A Night Divided
Everything, Everything
Rook
The Sleeper and the Spindle
The Six of Crows

Friday, October 23, 2015

The Literary Nunnery, Ep. 36: in which Leslie does some night vlogging



I actually started editing this but then decided not to bother. Raw footage all the way. Also, I think I'm back to only uploading on Fridays...until I build up more footage.



Books featured in this video:

The Boy Next Door by Katie Van Ark

My Life Next Door by Huntley Fitzpatrick

Bone Gap by Laura Ruby

Friday, October 16, 2015

The Literary Nunnery, Ep. 35: in which Leslie needs to learn things up





I started by talking about a couple books I have yet to read, then spent a while talking about a book I had read. And I had a lot to say about it (or do I just have a lot to say about Anne?)



Books featured in this video:

Pretending to Be Erica by Michelle Painchaud

The Blind Wish by Amber Lough

Ana of California by Andi Teran



Green Gables Fables: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PDOhS23KyCM&index=1&list=PLEcmjDOggZzQsuBhPjvpce2tidh95BRBl

Thursday, October 15, 2015

and the words, they're everything [wwis 12]

Hi! It's been a long time since my last installment of these...but I never meant to stop! Here's some random bot-generated what-would-i-say statuses of mine:


Direction to take: cadavers or memoirs? Decisions, decisions...

I prefer to be certain I don't have a mosquito, whether or not it hinders finding stuff.

Always choose this option.

In honor of cleaning the church this month. I think about this status a lot.

Not all of them.


Yum.

Yum.

Maybe the bbq, ranch, bacon, and tomato were a bit much (haha...as if)

See you next time! And there will be a next time. Soon.

Monday, October 12, 2015

followers of my faith [Mormon Monday 85]

How's this for a nice little blast from the past?

So, brothers and sisters, in this long eternal quest to be more like our Savior, may we try to be “perfect” men and women in at least this one way now—by offending not in word, or more positively put, by speaking with a new tongue, the tongue of angels. Our words, like our deeds, should be filled with faith and hope and charity, the three great Christian imperatives so desperately needed in the world today. With such words, spoken under the influence of the Spirit, tears can be dried, hearts can be healed, lives can be elevated, hope can return, confidence can prevail. I pray that my words, even on this challenging subject, will be encouraging to you, not discouraging, that you can hear in my voice that I love you, because I do. More importantly, please know that your Father in Heaven loves you and so does His Only Begotten Son. When They speak to you—and They will—it will not be in the wind, nor in the earthquake, nor in the fire, but it will be with a voice still and small, a voice tender and kind. 12 It will be with the tongue of angels.(x)

Such a good talk.

Friday, October 9, 2015

The Literary Nunnery, Ep. 34: in which Leslie segues





Everything is great.

Books featured in this video:
Every Breath by Ellie Marney
Bone Gap by Laura Ruby
Silver in the Blood by Jessica Day George

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

The Literary Nunnery, Ep. 33: In which Leslie leaves books everywhere





Spoiler alert: I loved the book I was excited about.



Books featured in this video:

Uprooted by Naomi Novik

Emmy & Oliver by Robin Benway

Rebel Mechanics by Shanna Swendson

Monday, October 5, 2015

followers of my faith [Mormon Monday 84]

It's so funny; the moment I sit down to work on a Mormon Monday I immediately get so tired.

Anyway, you guys know about kudzu vines? They kind of look like this:
"KudzuPlants" by Bubba73 (Jud McCranie) - Own work. Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 via Commons.


Sorta pretty. And apparently their flowers have a pleasant scent! So they don't look that bad, right?

You already know what I'm going to say.

They kill the trees they grow on. Simply overwhelm them with growth until they suffocate.

Somebody in my stake presidency noted that while a vine may look nice on your tree for a little bit, it's dangerous. Ideally you should just not go near the vine at all, unless you want your trees to die.

And...you can think of sin the same way!

Friday, October 2, 2015

watched the pattern take form

Instead of posting a video today, I decided to revamp all my video posts on this blog! So you can see what books are in each video from the post (I know it's in the description but not everyone wants to click on the video). I also have a masterpost with the books I really recommend, so you don't even have to waste your time watching any videos! Probably post that tomorrow.

Just trying to make your lives easier.

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

The Literary Nunnery, Ep. 32: in which Leslie experiments with angles


Pretty sure this is the first time my knees have shown up on the vlog. Now at least you know I have them.

Books featured in this video:
Spelled by Betsy Schow
Silver in the Blood by Jessica Day George
The Master Magician by Charlie N. Holmberg

Friday, September 25, 2015

The Literary Nunnery, Ep. 31: In which Leslie is gonna take books back


It's always a little embarrassing to return to the library a book I didn't even try to read.

Books featured in this video:
Heart of Deception by Mary E. Pearson
The Truth According to Us by Annie Barrows
Love Fortunes and Other Disasters by Kimberly Karalius

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

The Literary Nunnery, Ep. 30: In which Leslie loses against technology





I haven't been posting blog posts like I mean to, but at least I still make videos.

Sometimes I get disappointed in mine and my Chromebook's inability to communicate properly with each other.

Books featured in this video:
Dune by Frank Herbert
I am Princess X by Cherie Priest

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

The Literary Nunnery, Ep. 29: In which Leslie times her conversation



Ah, Tuesdays. Another library haul (and a reading update).

Books featured in this video:
Son of War, Daughter of Chaos by Janette Rallison
Heart of Betrayal by Mary E. Pearson
Spelled by Betsy Schow
My Life Next Door by Huntley Fitzpatrick
The Truth According to Us by Annie Barrows
Dune by Frank Herbert

Friday, September 11, 2015

The Literary Nunnery, Ep. 28: In which Leslie has a chance to revisit



Obviously filmed on a Tuesday. Very short (and would've been shorter, but I added all my false starts to the end as a laugh).

This video was obviously filmed on a Tuesday. Also, I added my multiple false starts to the end of the video as a laugh (and also because otherwise it would've been less than a minute long).

Books featured in this video:
Crimson Bound by Rosamund Hodge
Dune by Frank Herbert

Saturday, September 5, 2015

The Literary Nunnery, Ep. 27: In which Leslie recognizes a pattern



I know what I like.

Books featured in this video:
A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas
Crimson Bound by Rosamund Hodge
The Wrath and the Dawn by Renee Ahdieh

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

The Literary Nunnery, Ep. 26: In which Leslie reads at work


(I keep forgetting to share to the blog. There's a handy "subscribe" button on Youtube, though, if you want to be sure not to miss any...just saying...have I really become that person...)
Not related, but the audio on this video was super out of sync. The fact that you probably can't tell that is so great to me. I am a woman of accomplishment.

Books featured in this video:
The Fill-In Boyfriend by Kasie West

Monday, August 31, 2015

followers of my faith [Mormon Monday 83]

It's that time of year I spend a lot of time looking up Conference quotes (that someone else has chosen, I just have to download the files and highlight the pertinent text), which means I run into some really great things, like this one from Elder Christofferson:


A consecrated life is a beautiful thing. Its strength and serenity are “as a very fruitful tree which is planted in a goodly land, by a pure stream, that yieldeth much precious fruit” (D&C 97:9). Of particular significance is the influence of a consecrated man or woman upon others, especially those closest and dearest. The consecration of many who have gone before us and others who live among us has helped lay the foundation for our happiness. In like manner future generations will take courage from your consecrated life, acknowledging their debt to you for the possession of all that truly matters. May we consecrate ourselves as sons and daughters of God, “that when he shall appear we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is; that we may have this hope” (Moroni 7:48; see also 1 John 3:2),
It makes me want to be better, especially so I can be a good influence on others.

Friday, August 28, 2015

The Literary Nunnery, Ep. 25: In which Leslie doesn't display a whole lo...


I don't check out books because I think they'll change my life.

Books featured in this video:
The Fill-In Boyfriend by Kasie West
The Boy Next Door by Katie Van Ark
Things We Know By Heart by Jessi Kirby
Ana of California by Andi Teran
We Are All Made of Molecules by Susan Nielsen
Galgorithm by Aaron Karo
The Orphan Queen by Jodi Meadows

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

The Literary Nunnery, Ep. 24: In Which Leslie Unequivocally Recommends a...



One book I really liked, and one I didn't even bother to finish.

I said "Um" a LOT in this video. I thought about cutting them out but I'm getting pretty lazy about the editing of these things.

Books featured:
Valiant by Sarah McGuire
An Uncertain Choice by Jody Henlund

Monday, August 24, 2015

followers of my faith [Mormon Monday 82]

Read this.

“We live in a very poor part of Kenya on the border of Uganda. One of our branch presidents … is a farmer living on an extended family compound. He is a young man with a small family. …
“… He has members of his branch who tell him … that they cannot come to Church on Sunday because … they are afraid to leave their homes for fear their neighbors will steal their crops. … [This] is a very REAL concern. … In fact, people … wait to plant when the other neighbors plant, so they lessen the chance for their early harvest to be taken. …”
“[They also say] they cannot come to Church on Sunday because they must work … because they are so poor.”
“[The branch president] continued, ‘I tell them, “I leave my home every Sunday and stay at Church for long hours of the day. I do not work on the Sabbath. When I return home, I have often found that my neighbors have stolen my [corn], my chickens, their eggs, my fruit because they are hungry and they have no food. Still, I find that when it comes time for harvest, I am blessed because my land produces more than theirs—even though they work each Sunday. My land produces more, and I am blessed because I keep the Sabbath Day holy.”’
“Hearing [this branch president’s] comment, [another branch president] said, ‘I can attest to the same thing. I have 2 acres of [corn]. My neighbor works 10 acres. He works every Sunday. I do not. When it comes time to harvest, I have plenty. My neighbor comes to me for food because he hasn’t enough. I, too, am blessed for living the law of the Sabbath.’”11The Lord’s ways are higher than our ways—and so is His arithmetic. It is different than ours. It is true of tithing, isn’t it? With tithing, 10 minus 1 does not equal 9. The Lord blesses us with what we need and more. That is also true of the Sabbath. There are seven days in a week, but working six of seven days actually provides us with more, not less, of the things we truly need. You can almost hear the Lord say, “Prove me now herewith … if I will not open you the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing, that there shall not be room enough to receive it.
source

Sunday, August 23, 2015

The Literary Nunnery, Ep. 23: In which Leslie reads a Sunday book


Sometimes slow reading comes in little packages.

Books featured in this video:
Amazed by Grace by Sheri L. Dew

Friday, August 14, 2015

The Literary Nunnery, Ep. 22: In which Leslie wasn't crying





spoilers for jane eyre.
Spoilers for Jane Eyre in this video. Also, I can't believe I forgot to mention my favorite modern adaptation of Jane Eyre...guess I'll put a link below.

Books featured in this video:
The Whisperer by Fiona McIntire
Northanger Abbey by Jane Austen
Re Jane by Patricia Park
Valiant by Sarah McGuire

The Autobiography of Jane Eyre: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PL3NxAiyc-89HP3wHV2y5mbwi2TidvocKZ

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

the stars are dancing

I don't know how I knew my 10,000th day was coming up; I just did. About a month ago I had a moment of panic that I'd missed it, so I looked up a little calculator to help me determine when I would be 10,000 days old.

It's today!

The only thing I ever think of when pondering such a milestone is Howl's Moving Castle (the book, not the movie). In it, the fact that Howl is 10,000 days old is a plot point! Based on John Donne's poem "Song."

Today I did not get with child a mandrake root or find what wind advances an honest mind. I had some party ideas to do with those things though. (I was too lazy to have a party. I made a Facebook event and didn't invite anyone; my family still said they'd come.)

However! It is the Perseids tonight so I could, reasonably, go and catch a falling star.

After all, Howl did.


And nothing bad came of that at all.

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

The Literary Nunnery, Ep. 21: In which Leslie moves around a lot


Filming at night is not ideal for my beauty...neither is not bothering to brush my hair. But my commentary about books more than makes up for that.

Books featured in this video:
Crimson Bound by Rosamund Hodge
A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas
Love Fortunes and Other Disasters by Kimberly Karalius
The Wrath and the Dawn by Renee Adieh

Friday, August 7, 2015

The Literary Nunnery, Ep. 20: In which Leslie considers her silliness


You can learn a lot by reading the introductions to books.

Books featured in this video:
Northanger Abbey by Jane Austen
Charmed by Michelle Khrys
An Uncertain Choice by Jody Henlund

Tuesday, August 4, 2015

The Literary Nunnery, Ep. 19: in which Leslie gets books big and small



There's the possibility of escape from the literary nunnery in this episode! Neither of these books are YA fiction.
There's the possibility of escape from the literary nunnery in this episode! Neither of these books (one skinny, one fat) are young adult fiction.

Books featured in this video:
Amazed by Grace by Sheri L. Dew
Dune by Frank Herbert

Friday, July 31, 2015

The Literary Nunnery, Ep. 18: In which Leslie films at her desk





Hazards of making a video at work
Hazards of filming at work I suppose!

Books featured in this video:
The Storyspinner by Becky Wallace

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

The Literary Nunnery, Ep. 17: in which Leslie has an exciting weekend


Extra-long video this time because I forgot to post a second one last week. There is some embarrassing footage in here and I don't even care.
I sure put some embarrassing stuff in this video. Don't you wish you were me? Extra-long because I didn't post a video last week.

Books featured in this video:
Illusionarium by Heather Dixon
P.S. I Still Love You by Jenny Han
Suspicion by Alexandra Monir

Thursday, July 23, 2015

The Literary Nunnery, Ep. 16: In which Leslie films from home


In honor of Pioneer Day holiday, here's the vlog I filmed on Independence Day holiday.

Books featured in this video:
The Mermaid's Sister by Carrie Anne Noble
Now That You're Here by Amy K. Nichols
Dream a Little Dream by Kerstin Gier

Friday, July 17, 2015

The Literary Nunnery, Ep. 15: in which Leslie reads books all the way th...

I am fast running out of titles for this vlog.
I specifically filmed against our accent wall so that all the purple in this video would stand out (or blend in? I guess).

Books featured in this video:
The Girl at Midnight by Melissa Grey
Grounded: The Adventures of Rapunzel by Megan Morrison

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

in which Leslie talks fast


I made it through the recording!

Books featured in this video:
P.S. I Still Love You by Jenny Han
Suspicion by Alexandra Monir
Illusionarium by Heather Dixon
Northanger Abbey by Jane Austen

Monday, July 13, 2015

followers of my faith [Mormon Monday 81]

Oh man. Scriptures about stiffneckedness are on my mind today. (Here's a refresher if you've been wondering how often it comes up.)

Maybe, MAYBE all those people can't figure out how to stop. Maybe it hurts to try to be any other way than the way they are. Maybe they wish they could turn their heads and see, or even bow their heads in humility, but they can't work it out. The only way for it to happen is the way of pain.

Sounds accurate to me. Humility generally does take pain one way or the other. But it's better when you have a Healer watching over the process.

Sunday, July 12, 2015

you are my friend

Two of my dearest friends have birthdays within a day of each other. I thought I'd write up a little blog post about why I love them both. (I could do one of each, but people already can't tell them apart so I may as well exacerbate that situation.)

Cynthia is my go-to hangout buddy.
Photo shamelessly stolen from Cynthia's blog.

We have so much fun together! She is kind (but not so nice she's boring), beautiful, and funny. She also thinks I'm funny which is definitely a point in her favor. We talk most every day, especially on gchat. It's great to have someone keep you company at work and she is excellent company. We have similar taste in books and help motivate each other to do social things (or, on very rare occasions, validate each other in not doing anything social). We also love to play piano together. I'm so glad she's in my life.

Corinne is my most long-standing roommate.

I have never ever had such a caring roommate as Corinne, and I only wish I could be like her. She too is beautiful, kind (but not so nice she's boring), and funny (and thinks I'm funny. Like, really funny). She is also brave. Since I've lived here she's gone forward with her life in so many ways that I admire so much. I also like to talk to Corinne at work. :) Plus she is very patient with me, which is an excellent trait. We also love to play piano together. I'm so glad she's in my life.

Cynthia and Corinne are also friends with each other! And we are all of us friends together!
This was more than a year ago. And we miss you, Rachael

We like to play piano together (well, we've done it a couple times) and talk about how our lives have come to this. I'm not surprised they're friends (because they're both SUPER AWESOME), I'm just grateful either of them are willing to be friends with me. I wish I could think of all the things I want to say about these wonderful women, but feelings make me uncomfortable so I'll leave it at this.

Happy birthday, both of you! I love you!


Friday, July 10, 2015

In which Leslie apparently is afraid of books


Sometimes I just can't make myself open a book because I worry I'll be too traumatized by what happens inside it. I wasn't too traumatized. Hope you're not too traumatized by my hair.

Books featured in this video:
Everything I Never Told You by Celeste Ng
The Eternity Key by Bree Despain

Tuesday, July 7, 2015

In which Leslie reevaluates a couple books


I show off the books I checked out from the library and discuss the book I'm currently reading.

Books featured in this video:
The Storyspinner by Becky Wallace
The Orphan Queen by Jodi Meadows
An Ember in the Ashes by Sabaa Tahir

Monday, July 6, 2015

followers of my faith [Mormon Monday 80]

Hi guys. Can you believe I've made (approximately) 80 entries in this series? I sort of can't. I know that there will always be more to say but sometimes it feels like I've said everything already. Still, I'm super impressed with my sticktoitiveness (for once) and hope to continue for a long time more.

Yesterday I finally cleaned my room. I turned on a BYU Devotional to listen to while I unpacked bags from weeks ago traveling, and decided to go with Ron Staheli's 1996 address, "The Comprehending Soul: Open Minds and Hearts". And it was great. Here's a snippet (though I'd suggest listening to the whole thing):

With coordination of mind and heart we continue the process of reconciling the natural man to the spiritual man. By working with mind and heart together, we best prepare to understand and assume responsibility for our choices. And with mind and heart both participating in those choices, we can find our way to self-reliance, morality, principles, character, and integrity. 
But what a balancing act! There are endless complications: We will not escape hurt feelings. We will experience loss and disappointment. The gifts we offer, which we may view as the best and most appropriate things within us, may be received with little appreciation, with disdain, or they may be refused altogether. The heart will want to harden or close and leave the mind free to take offense or seek retaliation or retribution, or it will want to rebel against what an otherwise connected heart and mind know to be true. 
By design we are asked to live with the stress of unanswered questions, paradox, incongruity, enigma, and seeming absurdity, which will try our tenacity, patience, and faithfulness. Our thinking will be challenged, our powers of reason will be overwhelmed, leaving the heart free to wander toward an unrealistic world of self-deception.
As you can tell it's about using both heart and mind in our lives, and not letting one overrule the other. That's something I don't usually think about but in the course of the address I realized that I am guilty of the head ruling the heart, and the heart ruling the head. But now that my eyes are opened I can start to pay more attention.

Friday, July 3, 2015

In which Leslie really liked This Shattered World


I recorded this video right into Youtube. That's why I look so different.

Books featured in this video:
This Shattered World by Amie Kaufman and Meagan Spooner
These Broken Stars by Amie Kaufman and Meagan Spooner

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

In which Leslie just has piles of books





I show off the books I have recently checked out. Again. Guys, I like the format of this vlog a lot.

Books featured in this video:
This Shattered World by Amie Kaufman and Meagan Spooner
The Girl at Midnight by Melissa Grey
The Whisperer by Fiona McIntosh
The Eternity Key by Bree Despain
Grounded: The Adventures of Rapunzel by Megan Morrison
Valiant by Sarah McGuire
An Ember in the Ashes by Sabaa Tahir

Monday, June 29, 2015

followers of my faith [Mormon Monday 79]

Last week I was looking through the Old Testament curriculum and discovered a section of the Pearl of Great Price that I didn't remember ever studying before (though I know I've read it, and maybe even talked about it in seminary).

After Enoch's call to preach repentance, he expresses concerns and the Lord promises He will help. Then this happens:

35 And the Lord spake unto Enoch, and said unto him: Anoint thine eyes with clay, and wash them, and thou shalt see. And he did so.
 36 And he beheld the spirits that God had created; and he beheld also things which were not visible to the natural eye; and from thenceforth came the saying abroad in the land: A seer hath the Lord raised up unto his people. (Moses 6:35-36)
I liked the symbolism of the clay (from the earth) covering his eyes and then being washed away, and Enoch seeing with spiritual eyes. I'm not called to be a seer but I could still benefit from learning to see things with spiritual eyes.

It makes me wonder, what clay do I need to wash away from my eyes?

Because Enoch did as the Lord commanded, he was blessed. By strict obedience and with the Lord's help, we can see with spiritual eyes.

This morning I needed something to listen to while I completed a task. I decided on "Seeing with New Eyes" by Professor Cox in 1995. He talked about how we could broaden our vision by doing four things:

1. Submission to Authority -- "The Prophet Joseph Smith taught: “Now if they will be wise, they will humble themselves in a peculiar manner that God may open the eyes of their understanding” (Teachings, p. 78). The gates of heaven open when we are humble, allowing us to be led and blessed by priesthood authority."
2. Waiting Upon the Lord -- Those who wait upon God find small miracles along the way.
3. Seek for the Beautiful -- When those who call themselves realists urge us to yield to the temptations of the flesh, because everybody’s doing it or because that’s how things are, the living God (through the living prophets, Church, and scriptures) reminds us, not of how things seem to be, but of how things really are.
The genuine realist is really able to “consider the lilies in the field” and thereby see a planning and a providing God in marvelous microcosm—or he can consider the heavens and see God moving in majestic and marvelous macrocosm!
4. Mechanism and the Role of God in the Universe -- Imagine how we would believe and adore if we gazed at the stars and heard the voice of God, as did Moses, saying: “And worlds without number have I created; and I also created them for mine own purpose; and by the Son I created them, which is mine Only Begotten” (Moses 1:33). To a disciple, studies in botany or astrophysics do not weaken faith in the position of God but only increase admiration and love for the Creator.
So there's that.

Friday, June 26, 2015

In which Leslie reads a couple books


I split this video between home and work because recording it all at home didn't work.

Books featured in this video:
Prudence by Gail Carriger
Fairest by Marissa Myer
This Shattered World by Amie Kaufman and Meagan Spooner

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

In which Leslie takes an unexpected turn



Many thanks to my mother who filmed this video for me. There's something to be said about doing a review mere minutes after I finish a book, and also not having to use a webcam.

Books featured in this video:
Top Ten Clues You're Clueless by Liz Czukas

Monday, June 22, 2015

followers of my faith [Mormon Monday 78]

Yesterday was...sort of rough. I ingested caffeine without thinking through the consequences of that action. The main consequence is that I talk faster. I talk so much faster that my brain (not always engaged at the best of times) has no way to keep up. Essentially, my filter disappears.

Awesome! (This is why I avoid caffeine. Yesterday was an accident.)

By the end of the day I wanted to stamp this sentence permanently into my brain:

The meek think of more clever things to say than are said. - Elder Neal A. Maxwell
 Nice, right? I've never met a sentence that needed to be my motto more. Someone should make it into a pretty graphic so I can make it my desktop, phone background, and also maybe tape it to my hand. And then it can make the rounds on the internet.

Ideally it would look better than this.
I made this myself. I don't think I had to tell you that.

Friday, June 19, 2015

in which Leslie has an arithmetic fail





I once (like an hour before I filmed this) gravely miscalculated the number of books I had checked out from the library. The person I told this to responded (weeks later) suggesting I live in a literary nunnery. Not necessarily because of that. But it's very convenient.



I promise that I'll start talking more loudly.



Books featured in this video:
Chasing Power by Sarah Beth Durst
The Cure for Dreaming by Cat Winters
A Dangerous Place by Jacqueline Winspear
Miss Mayhem by Rachel Hawkins

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

in which Leslie would've had a guest





We tried to film a vlog for you. We tried three times. There was a lot of great content, probably, but no one can ever know for sure because my Chromebook burned it up. So this is all you get.

Books featured (briefly) in this video:
Prudence by Gail Carriger
Fairest by Marissa Meyer

Monday, June 15, 2015

followers of my faith [Mormon Monday 77]

Someone called me spiritually stunted yesterday. At least, insinuated that my taste in books (oh, I should post a vlog) is leading me to spiritual stunting. I was a little bit offended and thought "Would a spiritually stunted person post a faith-promoting message on her blog every Monday...ending two months ago?" Hmm.

I really thought I just didn't feel like posting a Mormon Monday for a few weeks, and then I just got out of the habit. But maybe it's just that I'm, you know, stunted.

Well, baby steps back in again. Got to promote some growth somehow.

A song that I've been thinking a lot about this week is "Nephi's Courage." It's a great song! I played it on the piano a few days ago and it's sort of been in my head ever since. It struck me that it's pretty much been since Primary that I've heard Nephi described as "courageous." Full of faith, yes. Giving us an example of receiving revelation, yes.

But on pondering the song I've realized that following the Spirit is really brave. I don't think I would be brave enough to follow the promptings Nephi received, at least not at this stunted stage of my life. Even humbly going into the wilderness with his family was brave.

There are quite a few courageous things we're called on to do, starting with keeping the Lord's commandments. Keeping on keeping on when life looks dreary. Keeping the faith. That's all the "keep" things I can think of right now.

Anyway, it can be hard to keep doing these things. But we should be like Nephi! Reach deep within ourselves and be determined to have courage. I can be courageous, and I can reply, "I will go, I will do the things the Lord commands. I know the Lord provides a way, he wants me to obey."

Friday, June 5, 2015

In which Leslie has a surprise!


I almost forgot to upload this. In fact I was so close to forgetting that this is the unedited version because the edited version is on my other computer. Luckily it's not too different.

Books featured in this video:
Re Jane by Patricia Park

Friday, May 29, 2015

In which Leslie picked up a couple more books





I picked up some more books from the library. Maybe what I should start doing is writing down which books I talk about in the video so you know if you want to watch it or not.

Man the lighting in this one is not ideal.

Books featured in this video:
Miss Mayhem by Rachel Hawkins
A Dangerous Place by Jacqueline Winspear
Chasing Power by Sarah Beth Durst

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

In which Leslie recaps a couple recent books


On my lunch break I decided to talk about books I've finished...one I actually read, and one I couldn't make it through.

Books featured in this video:
Inherit Midnight by Kate Kae Myers
The Glass Arrow by Kristen Simmons

Friday, May 22, 2015

In which Leslie has way so many books checked out



New vlog! Filmed at the same time as my last video (because I'm wearing the same clothes). I talk about all the books I have checked out. There are a lot of them.

Books featured in this video:
Flunked by Jen Calonita
Dream a Little Dream by Kerstin Geir
Now That You're Here by Amy K. Nichols
Shadows by Robin McKinley
Chasing Power by Sarah Beth Durst
The Cure for Dreaming by Cat Winters
The Mermaid's Sister by Carrie Anne Noble
The Glass Arrow by Kristen Simmons

Friday, May 15, 2015

makes a note of all your endless goings-on



So, cool thing, I started a vlog. It's...great. Probably post on Fridays and whenever else I feel like it. Now that I've started I feel a lump in my throat every time I think about opening my mouth again.

(This is the first and thus-far only episode. I'll probably post new episodes on the blog as they come.)

Books featured in this video:
A Hero at the End of the World by Erin Claiborne
Top Ten Clues You're Clueless by Liz Czukas
Everything I Never Told You by Celeste Ng
Inherit Midnight by Kate Kae Myers
Valour and Vanity by Mary Robinette Kowal

Monday, April 13, 2015

followers of my faith [Mormon Monday 76]

I love General Conference, and I love the pretty graphics (or printables) that come from it. I'm at the point now where I need to listen to them all again, and read, and study. And make the changes I know I need to make.

Here's a pretty graphic.

source

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

and the words, they're everything [11]

It's time to share some more of my favorite status-bot tweets! Today our theme is "Friends and Family."

Usually I'm great with the number of friends I have. This week I've definitely felt like I need more friends.
I do have a lot of acquaintances though. And...awkward speeches are a hallmark of our communication.
Gotta keep up on the local weather news for my siblings.

This is probably about our ultimate frisbee game a couple weeks ago. #doubleteaming


Works like a charm.
I find this so, so romantic.
You can see here for the song I'm quoting.
I probably need this article in my life.

Edit: Here's a bonus one that I made this morning prior to writing up this post. It happens to be surprisingly apt for today.

It wasn't snowing when I made this.

Monday, March 30, 2015

followers of my faith [Mormon Monday 75]

This past week we had an opportunity to listen to Sister Mary N. Cook talk about some of her life experiences and impart some wisdom to us as a YSA stake. It was great. She based her remarks on the following scripture in Ezekiel:
For I have no pleasure in the death of him that dieth, saith the Lord God: wherefore turn yourselves, and live ye. (Ezekiel 18:32)
God doesn't want us to waste away in waiting, whether that's waiting to die or waiting for something in your life to happen. It's kind of like He's saying, I don't want your pointless life any more than you want your life to be pointless, so do something about it. Make of your life a masterpiece.

It also reminds me of this character from Pollyanna:


 She spends all her time in bed, waiting to die. And making everyone's lives miserable. No one wants to be around her.

Then she meets Pollyanna, who helps her turn herself into someone that's glad to be alive.

Starting with stepping out of the bed.
Sister Cook's three suggestions on ways to 'turn ourselves' were to Learn, Strengthen ties with family, and Serve in the Church. I think. I didn't actually take notes. But I know that those are excellent ways to turn our thoughts to things other than just waiting to 'die'. As it were.

It was a very uplifting program. I have a lot to think about as a result. Great way to spend a birthday.

Monday, March 16, 2015

followers of my faith [Mormon Monday 74]

President Faust gave an address in 1976 entitled "A Personal Relationship with the Savior." In it he said,
Recently in South America, a seasoned group of outstanding missionaries was asked, “What is the greatest need in the world?” One wisely responded: “Is not the greatest need in all of the world for every person to have a personal, ongoing, daily, continuing relationship with the Savior?” Having such a relationship can unchain the divinity within us, and nothing can make a greater difference in our lives as we come to know and understand our divine relationship with God.
I like the imagery of unchaining the divinity within us. We can start to reach our full potential if we will drink deeply of living water -- become closer to Christ.

Then President Faust gave "five beginning, essential measures which will greatly clear the channel for a daily flow of “living water” from the very source of the spring, even the Redeemer Himself."
Here's what he said:

1) A daily communion involving prayer.
2) A daily selfless service to another.
3) A daily striving for increased obedience and perfection in our lives.
4) A daily acknowledgement of His divinity.
5) A daily study of the scriptures.

I'm sort of getting the impression that all of these things should be happening daily. (That kind of reminds me of the Pi(e) Day party I went to on Saturday. We made "What I'm Looking For" pie charts. In order to give myself plausible deniability I prefaced each category with "acceptable." "Acceptable height," "acceptable disdain for pets," "acceptable handsomeness," etc.) Five simple things can't be that hard to do every day! We already do five things every day...most of us...like brush our teeth, eat some food, go to work.

So that's something to consider.

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

sail on time, rain or shine

Last night I started making a Facebook status, then I changed my mind. But I still felt the need to make a statement, so I proceeded to Twitter. That helped.

But it is not enough.

I apparently feel so strongly about this that I'm writing an entire blog post! The subject: shipping.

I'm not talking FedEx or DHL.

I'm talkin' HMS Harmony and Fire & Ice.

(Those are the only two cool ship names I remember, and one of them is still a portmanteau. But the best portmanteau. Man, Harry and Hermione should've ended up together just because Harmony is a great ship name.) (Fire & Ice was Draco/Ginny. Yes, people really thought they should be a couple. I have no room to talk though, I actually wrote them as a couple one time.)

In case the context clues haven't filled you in, "shipping" is seeing two fictional characters and thinking, "You should probably end up together." Probably a shortening of "relationship"...if relationship were a verb....

Shipping is great! But it is also apparently only understood on the internet. One night at dinner I asked my friend if she still ships me with one of our mutual friends, and she had no idea what I was talking about. And it's hard to explain shipping.

"I...like the idea of you guys as a couple," she said, hesitatingly. "Does that mean I ship ... I'm shipping?"

Yeah, she so ships Chilimac. (I gave myself a ship name?! Too bad this one is destined to never sail. Much like Pine Tree. That ship never sailed.)

Best codename ever invented, though.

(I don't usually ship myself with people. Or ship real life people in general. Much. Just so you know. It's almost exclusively a fictional endeavor.)

I used to be all about the canon ships. You know, ships that made it into the actual canon of the fictional universe I was in. Harry/Ginny, Ron/Hermione, Remus/Tonks. But the older I get and the more fandoms I experience, the more willing I am to get behind ships that didn't sail in canon.

AND NOTHING WILL EVER EVER EVER CONVINCE ME THAT ZUKO/KATARA SHOULDN'T HAVE BEEN A THING. IT SHOULD'VE BEEN A THING. ZUTARA FOREVER.

THIS REALLY HAPPENED I WILL GO DOWN WITH THIS SHIP
Shipping is a big part of my fictional escapades. And, let me tell you, it's huge on the internet. Ship wars are a thing. (Especially before Half-Blood Prince came out. H/Hr and R/Hr were at odds all the time! And then HBP did come out and JKR called H/Hr shippers "delusional" and then those who didn't jump ship started calling themselves "Proudly Delusional" and it was a big thing and I'm so glad I was there for it.)

I even have opinions about using portmanteaus as ship names instead of a symbolic representation of the characters (I mean, which would you rather ship, Literati or Rogan? Little shout-out to the Gilmore Girls fandom...that I missed by however many years. Just as well). Never ever will you see me use "Hinny" when H/G or even Harry/Ginny are an option.

I'm not sure where I'm going with this. I like to get invested in the fiction I partake of. I like to talk to people about the fiction I partake of, especially if they are also invested (or if they're open to be talked into investing). And I'm more willing to admit to these things than I used to be. Feel free to ask me what I'm shipping these days. I'll let you know.

Monday, March 9, 2015

followers of my faith [Mormon Monday 73]

The music I copied over in my great hard drive rescue a couple months ago is not at all organized. Every once in a while I'll click into a random folder to see what's there. And I found The Ahrens Band in one of them!

My freshman boyfriend's second counselor in the bishopric of his home ward was in a band at BYU. He gave me the CD as a token of our relationship, or something. He didn't like it that much.

But I like it! Listening to it again after several years of forgetting about it was an exercise in familiarity. Some of these songs were on my "Sunday Sounds" playlist, which meant I listened to them weekly for a couple years.

Including "stand tall" whose lyrics I found very touching as I sat there on a Friday night, aimlessly playing 2048 (if I had to guess) and listening to music. I don't necessarily love it, but there's just something about some of the lines here:

Walking through this life I lose my way
Walking off the path I stumble and fall Listening through the tears I hear a voice
Listening deep within I hear it call
Don't give up

Don't stay down
Don't ever feel like you've been beaten
Stand up
Stand tall
Stand and walk on the path again

Looking forward I see the trail
Looking ahead find my way once more
Climbing to greater heights I see the view
Climbing, stumbling blocks turned stepping-stones

Don't give up
Don't stay down
Don't ever feel like you've been beaten
Stand up
Stand tall
Stand and walk on the path again

Sometimes in life we don't know where we're going
Sometimes we stumble and lose our way
We need to hold on to the dream that we've created
And always in our minds they'll say

Don't give up
Don't stay down
Don't ever feel like you've been beaten
Stand up
Stand tall
Stand and walk on the path again
Stand and walk on the path again
My favorite part is the imagery of stumbling blocks turned stepping stones. And the encouragement we all have to return and repent after we've fallen into a little spot of sin. Stand up, stand tall.

If you're interested in hearing more of The Ahrens Band, they put their music on iTunes (including the famous "peanut butter and jelly" which was written by them) for purchase! (Or you can just come over and I'll play it for you.)

floral