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Winter still going strong… crazy.

I’ve been in a bit of a funk lately.  I’m sure it’s the weather…  we’ve been breaking records left and right for the cold and snow, records that go back as far as they’ve been recording temperatures here in Saskatchewan – and that’s 120 years of recorded cold and snow levels.

It’s not unheard of to have a freak snowfall in April…  but we’re not talking about an odd, one-off, Spring snow.  We’re talking about a Winter that appears to be never-ending.  We still have over a foot of snow covering most of the yard (and three feet in some corners).

I have seeds awaiting planting.  And I’m dying to be spending time with my hands in the good dark earth.  I need to put on a pair of clam diggers, and get out in the sunshine.  This weather is just making me feel like curling up into a ball and never emerging from my bed.

Normally I spend my birthday outside, having a picnic or bbq.  Heck, on several occasions I’ve spent it on the beach.  Never in my now 36 years have I been kept indoors by snow.

In spite of the weather though, I had the best birthday I’ve had in a very long while.  Lily-Ann insisted that she and her Daddy go to great efforts to make the day special – and I am so grateful that she did.  I love Damon, but he’s never been one to make a fuss or do anything to make someone feel important on their day…  which means I’d gotten rather used to having crummy birthdays.  LOL  If I’d had one of those along with this crummy weather?  I’m not sure I would have gotten out of bed.  😉

My girl really did make me feel so special.  She got her Daddy up in the morning and the two of them made me breakfast in bed – something I’ve never had in my adult life.  Then we all watched a couple episodes of Friendship is Magic before heading out to build-a-bear…  where Lily-Ann and I picked out, and put together, and chose clothing for a Pinkie Pie stuffy.  Whom is now sitting beside my bed being super cute.  On our way home we all got smoothies, then vegged for a while before Supper.

My parents had bought me a gift card for Persephone Theater, and with it I bought tickets for Damon and I to see Ride the Cyclone – a musical about a group of dead teenagers.  It was very well written, and had us laughing all the way through.  Some fabulous performances as well.  It was a great way to wrap up a wonderful birthday.

So.  I’m 36.  I wish it actually looked like Spring, but I had a lovely birthday just the same.  Yep.  That sums it up pretty well.  😉

My Little Pony – Applejack

I had a hard time coming up with a guilty pleasure to photograph.  I live so wide open, and I don’t guilt myself over life’s little pleasures.  If there’s something that makes me happy, even if it’s something that other people may not really understand, I’m totally okay with that.  So I went to Damon, and he gave me this ‘you really have to ask’ look, and said “Your ponies!”  LOL

So here are a few members of my Applejack collection:

My Little Pony Blindbags - Metallic, Sparkle, and Regular Applejack

MLP Blind Bags Applejack Three blind bag MLP's

Applejack was my most loved pony when I was a little girl.  I thought she was the loveliest of all the My Little Ponies.  And while she was portrayed as a bit of a klutz on My Little Pony and Friends (the 80’s tv show), she was always “Princess Applejack” to me – she ruled over all my herd with a sweet and gentle hoof.  😉  So it’s with relish that I continue collecting Applejack, and even though she’s not my favourite of the new G4, Friendship is Magic, ponies she’ll always have a special place in my heart.

Well, we are almost through January, and I’ll admit… the last few photos may pose an additional challenge – seeing as how we leave for Disney World before dawn on Monday.  But I’ll get’r done (as Applejack would say).

photo a day challenge for january

MLP FiM LIVE in Saskatoon

This was such an overwhelming experience in so many ways.  If you have a loved one who’s all about Friendship is Magic you have got to find a way to get to one of these live performances.  Lily-Ann was so gleefully happy it was just awesome.  And seeing her that ecstatic filled me with a ridiculously alarming amount of joy.  LOL  Like, almost tearfully so.

Gasping with excitement upon seeing her hero, Rainbow Dash, emerge from the crowd to approach the stage.

You can hear Lily-Ann calling to Rainbow Dash, and then encouraging her:

Scroll down to the comments to see the video that is supposed to be here.  WordPress is messing up in a major way lately when it comes to embedding youtube clips.  The second clip below is working fine, but this one is just coming up as a duplicate of the second.  So I’ll paste it into a comment instead.  Sorry about the headache.

Rainbow Dash, Twilight Sparkle, and Apple Jack – the three ponies who came to Saskatoon for the Prairie leg of the live tour.

Only three of the “mane six” made it out to Saskatoon for the shows, but it was still super cool.  Okay, I’ll admit, it would have been at least 20% cooler if Pinkie Pie had been here too – after all, it was a little weird having the other ponies do her songs (and changing lyrics from “Pinkie” to “filly”).  But we were still super stoked when they did the girl’s and my very favourite song from season one.  😀  And yes, if you watch the video, that voice you hear singing along through most of it is the girl.  We know all the words.  😉

All in all?  An amazing, unforgettable experience.  So worth the hour of sitting on the hard mall floor prior to it starting to ensure we were right at the front.  My body was crying, but so was my heart – and my heart was much much louder.

Sneaking up to one of the banners to use it for a photo backdrop.  Super awesome!

We snuck up to the stage after everyone left for a quick photo-op. 😉
BEST PHOTO EVER!!!

20% Cooler? Try 80%!

While we were away at the lake, a very special piece of mail came for the kid.  While it was a piece of mail I’d been expecting, I hadn’t expected the sender to go so far to make it such a red-letter letter.  The community at the MLPTP really is outstanding, and this is just one example of how fabulous people there are to one another (and to us).

Here in Saskatchewan, we haven’t been able to get the new My Little Pony, Friendship is Magic trading cards.  One wonderful member of the Trading Post sent me what she called a “pity pack” made up from some of her doubles and triples.  And I’ll admit, kid-kid was jealous.  So when another member of the TP offered up some cards that she’d gotten that were bent?  I quickly asked if she’d consider sending them to Lily-Ann, she happily agreed.

Now, just receiving the bent cards would have been enough to absolutely thrill the girl…  but this individual went so far above and beyond, she made Lily-Ann’s week.  She sent several extra cards, a couple of cutie mark tattoos, a letter she wrote from the point of view of Princess Celestia, and she did up the envelope as if it had been hand (or hoof) delivered by Derpy herself.  I should have recorded the girl digging into everything – her squeals of delight really had to be heard to be believed.  And I was so touched that this person, who only knows us online as fellow pony folk, would go through so much trouble to do something special for my girl.  It really was an amazing thing to do.

A hand-written letter from Princess Celestia

A lovely hand-written letter direct from Princess Celestia!

 

Derpy Mail for Fairy Berry (the girl's ponysona), direct from Princess Celestia!

Derpy Mail for Fairy Berry (the girl’s ponysona), direct from Princess Celestia herself!

 

 

Thank you so much!  This was such a sweet and generous thing to do.  I know Lily-Ann will never forget the day she received mail direct from Equestria.  (((hugs)))  Forget 20%, you’re more like 80% cooler than the general pony population!  Especially to one absolutely thrilled little girl.  😀

My Little Pony Toys are Magic!

Last night, while kid-kid was at her weekly sleepover at my parent’s place, Damon and I were at the store.  We excitedly discovered both FS (Fashion Style) Princess Luna and the pink FS Princess Celestia My Little Pony toys at Superstore….  and even better than just finding a toy you’ve been looking for, is finding it at a reduced price!  The MLP collector in my tried to convince Damon that we should buy two of each – one of each to keep mint in box, and one of each for the girl to play with.  LOL  That proved futile, but we did buy one of each – one for the girl and one for me.

Tonight, after supper, I presented the ponies to the girl.  She was ecstatic!  We giggled together, and compared Luna (who is mine) and Celestia (who is hers), talked about how each was similar, how each was different.  We laughed about all the ways we can play with them.  Lily-Ann shared her plans to hold a royal wedding for them, and how my FS Pinkie Pie and her FS Twilight Sparkle could attend.  How tomorrow she is going to lay out all the pony outfits (while she doesn’t have all the FS toys, she does have all their outfits – purchased from a customizer who didn’t need the clothes, only the ponies themselves) and shoes, and how each pony is going to get to have a new outfit for the big event.  How the cutie mark crusaders are going to be the flower girls, and what role each pony will play.

Being so close to bedtime, we didn’t liberate the princesses from their packages…  but we sure had fun talking about her plans for them.  I knew she would be excited about our little surprise for her, but the extent of her delight was a surprise for me.  Now we each have a pink FS pony and a purple FS pony – a fact that thrills her to no end.

I have said it before, and I’ll say it again:  There is nothing like sharing something you love with someone you love.  And I feel so very lucky to have a toy that I loved thirty years ago be that something that can unite us today.  I remember the joy and excitement I felt when enveloped by that “new pony smell” that is the off-gassing of the plastic when the package is first opened, and sharing it with the girl now, it brings back all those same memories for me – and it means the world that I can give that same unbridled (pun obviously intended) happiness to my daughter.

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Now if only Hasbro would send out a WHITE Celestia, the girl’s happiness (and mine as a collector) would be complete.  😉

Friendship is Magic and/or Mental Health

I was thinking about the title Friendship is Magic, and while it may not really be magic, it can grant you mental health – which is pretty darn close.  Friends keep you grounded, they kick you in the pants when needed, and provide support when no one else can.  A good friend is like having a mental health provider on your speed dial.  And that, my friends?  That really is magic!

I’ve been stressing out about this whole ear issue of mine (and if you could hear the voice in my head, you’d note I said issue in the very proper British form where you hear the S sound vs the American ishu which is why it appears in italics.  Because while I’m Canadian, and we SHOULD pronounce everything in the proper British way, American English has ended up rather prevalent.  So you KNOW I’m taking pains to bring attention to a word when I pronounce it – even in my head – properly).  I’ve been worrying about the possibility of long term effects, and whether or not I’ll be able to continue with some of my very favourite things.  My health has taken a lot from me over the years, and the idea that something else may be taken away is a whole lot to digest.  When I brought this up with her, she reminded me that while some of my symptoms may be explained by the Eustachian Tube Disorder (and therefore possibly scary and somewhat permanent) that the severity of these same symptoms could be related to other related problems that are just as likely temporary.  Which means while I’m taking a break from one particular favourite activity right now, that things may still get better and I may be able to get back in the saddle (as it were) before too terribly long.  Without a good friend in whom I could confide, I’d still be stressing myself into a tizzy.  I still have a twinge of worry, but I’m definitely feeling better.  Friendship is Magic when it comes to Mental Health!

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Oh!  See http://howjsay.com/index.php?word=issue to hear the difference in pronunciation.  😉

Family is Magic!

I’ve got lots that I could be sharing tonight.  My mind is abuzz with possibilities and current happenings.  LOL  But, instead… mostly because along with that busy, busy brain comes a tired, tired body …I’ll share another piece of art I commissioned from a fellow artisan at Deviant Art.

I know I’ve talked about sharing a love of My Little Pony with my daughter, and I know I’ve done so on at least a few occasions.  There really is nothing better than sharing something you love with someone you love – and MLPs?  That’s our thing, the kids and mine.  🙂  So, when I saw this individuals work, I just knew I had to commission her to do a family portrait of us as ponies.  So the girlie is Fairy Berry (the pony is completely her creation, her name, her colours, the kid’s creation totally and completely) and I’m Prairie Lily.

Now…  Damon?  He’s not so into the ponies.  LOL  He watches Thundercats and He-man with us, and he will watch Friendship is Magic.  But it’s really not his thing.  Thankfully?  The kid took care of that.

Months ago now, she nick named her Daddy “Big Macintosh”.  And, well…  it just kinda fits.  LOL  He’s a Mac computer guy, he manages a produce department, he’s not a big talker with those who don’t know him well, and his favourite colour is red.  So I started calling him our “Big Macintosh” too.

Anyway, onto the family portrait.  It’s of us, as ponies.  Fairy Berry, Prairie Lily, and Big Macintosh:

Our Family Portrait...  a la My Little Pony, Friendship is Magic

My thanks to Lady Yumika, for this lovely, true to the G4 FiM line, pony family portrait.  I think it’s absolutely adorable, and the kid couldn’t be more thrilled – and that’s really what it’s all about for me.  😀

Cosplay – kinda cool or creepy and weird?

I have to admit to being in somewhat of an odd mood just now…  Had a couple things I was considering writing about, but in the end, I’m just too uncommitted to any of them to make a compelling argument either way.  Cosplay for example…  kinda cool or creepy and weird?  I’m honestly undecided.

On the kinda cool side we have this:

Rainbow Dash, FiM, cosplay

And this:

MLP, FiM, Rainbow Dash cosplay

Okay, yes…  they’re both Rainbow Dash from FiM, but let’s face it.  She makes everything at least 20% cooler.  😉

Now, on the creepy and weird side we have this:

really creepy full body Rainbow Dash and Apple Jack furry cosplay costumes

And while yes, it may feature Rainbow Dash along side Apple Jack…  even the typical coolness factor of RD couldn’t save this.  Yep.  Just way too creepy and weird.

Now because all three examples were from My Little Pony (ya had to know that if I was going to do a post on cosplay, it would mainly feature the characters from Friendship is Magic), I’ll toss one more out there.  Now, prepare yourselves.  This last image takes the cake on both the weird and the creepy.  No idea what this person was thinking, nor what character she’s attempting to portray from what show, book, or what-have-you…  but here she is (and don’t say I didn’t warn you):

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…had to give you one last chance to turn away.

Here it is:

creepy, weird, totally not cool cosplay

So…  while I think cosplay has the potential to be fun and harmless, there are folks like this poor individual who just take it to the creepy and weird level.  And it really is a whole NEW level of creepy and weird, thus ruining it for anyone who may be a fence sitter on the whole idea.  Because seriously, anyone who thinks THAT is awesome?  Well…  I think they may need some serious help (and I do hope they have someone in their life qualified to give just that).

Yep.  I’m just in that kinda head space.  Not committing one way or another.  Just trying to get my head around something I stumbled upon and not really sure where it all fits.

I was only able to track down a credit for one of these four images, so if you know who the others belong to, or you’re willing to own up them being yours, drop me a line and let me know.  I’m a firm believer in giving credit where it’s due.  In that spirit, the second image (the Rainbow Dash with the longer hair and rainbow arm bands) is Aisu, who does some great MLP inspired artwork which can be found here:  http://aisu-isme.deviantart.com/

Everything Old is New Again – The Muppet Movie!

Tonight we took kid-kid to a movie…  the new Muppet movie to be specific.  And I am SOOO glad we did.

It’s honestly a great time for people my age to be parents.  All the things we loved are being brought back, and having kids is the perfect excuse to love them all over again.  True, some things that are being brought back are in a slightly more adult form (like the Thundercats) but some things are still perfectly, joyously, wonderfully for kids and us kids at heart (like My Little Pony, Friendship is Magic).  It really is the coolest thing ever to be able to share something you loved so much, with someone you love so much.

The girlie and I both love My Little Pony – and we watch both the classic shows from when I was young and the new Friendship is Magic series too.  I’ll admit to still having many of my childhood MLPs (and a few more I’ve collected along the way, including some mint on card items), and it’s so much fun to help her build her collection of G4 (as collectors refer to the ponies currently available in stores) MLPs.  Damon, the kid, and I all watch Thundercats together too, which is so much fun to share…  and the Muppet Show is right up there for us too.

It was truly truly awesome to watch Lily-Ann during the new Muppet Movie.  Watching as her eyes got wide, and her grin got so big I thought it would crack her face.  Watching her tap her feet, and dance in her seat, and listening to her sing along with some of her favourite Muppet songs.  One of my favourite moments was when, in the quiet theatre she exclaimed “Oh! My! Goodness!!!!  It’s NPH!!!!”  Yes, a love of Neil Patrick Harris is something else we share thanks to growing up in the age of Dr. Doogie.

I have to admit, I enjoyed listening to the other members of the audience as they too enjoyed kid-kid’s enthusiasm.  Little giggles and “awwwws” of adoration came from around us at her visible and audible appreciation for the movie.  “Mommy!  Mom!  He said ‘Steve Martin’!  I know him.  I love Steve Martin!”  …all together now:  giggle giggle “awwwww”.

Of course the movie had it’s doofus moments too, it is the Muppets after all.  But I really am SOOOO glad we went.  Seeing them on the big screen is so worth doing.  Seeing some classic Muppet moments (like the introduction to The Muppet Show) that big and that loud was amazing…  and hearing my daughter singing it, barely contained by her big movie theatre seat, was incredible.

So yeah.  I don’t often gush about a movie experience, but this one really was an experience.  If you’re my age, and you’ve got little ones, you need to take them to see this movie.  And if you haven’t already?  Hit your local library for some The Muppet Show DVDs…  it’s SOOOO worth it to share something that you loved with someone that you love!

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