Wednesday, 24 December 2014
Sunday, 26 October 2014
Saturday, 18 October 2014
Monday, 29 September 2014
Thursday, 18 September 2014
Saturday, 16 August 2014
latest vlog episode- a bit of a serious one today, but important to talk about, I think...
Sunday, 27 July 2014
The hidden message within the “welcome video” at the beginning of the “Testing Your Five Senses” RP seems to be that people have lost their lives through the testing that they underwent at ASMR Science. Does Mystical Feather regret this loss of life, and fear it like Jekyll in the “Jekyll & Hyde” RP, or is she more like “H”, seeing these people, too, as a means to an end in the pursuit of Science/Utopia/Eternal Life?
Thursday, 26 June 2014
Monday, 16 June 2014
So tonight I'm taking a break from studying coz I want to do something special for my mama. She has been so amazing these last few weeks while I've been practically tearing my hair out from stress, so I wanted to do something to honour her. So here is a list (not comprehensive, by any means!) of 15 reasons why I love my mama.
1. She supports me. She has always let me make my own decisions with regards to what I want to study, my extra curricular activities, etc. Nowadays, she supports me with things like my YouTube channel (www.youtube.com/user/melanieraye89). It's so amazing to have her in my corner like that.
2. She doesn't just accept my crazy...she joins in, too. One great example of this is the day that we parodied the movie "Mamma Mia" over skype chat. It was glorious, I tell you.
3. She is the most amazing baker. And, ever since I was a little girl, she would let me help her bake...and then came my favourite part. She would let me lick the wooden spoon, the spatula, the beaters, and sometimes even the whole freaking mixing bowl. YUM.
4. She shares some of the same tastes in music that I do. Three artists/bands that immediately come to mind that we both love are ABBA, Shania Twain, and Celine Dion.
5. She lets me share my love of Glee with her by watching a full season of the show with me almost every time I go to Australia to visit her.
6. She loves my friends. It means the world to me that she approves of the people that I have chosen to do life with.
7. She knows that a movie marathon is not a movie marathon without popcorn, chips, dip, and lollies of some description.
8. As I have grown into a young woman, she has become a close friend as well as my mother. I love that we can go out and "be ladies" together, get our hair done, go shopping, out for coffee and/or dessert, or to the movies.
9. She raised me to love Jesus. I have her to thank for a good part of why I am walking so close to God now.
10. She taught me to live generously. I know that one of the main reasons why I so love giving gifts, sharing food, and donating to charities or even random buskers on the street is because she modeled that to me.
11. She shares my love of reading. I never have to pack any books in my suitcase when I go visit her in Australia, because I know that she will let me raid her bookshelf to my heart's content.
12. She says often that she is proud of me and loves me...and not just to me, but on Facebook for all her friends to see. I am glad that she sees me as someone worth declaring her love for.
13. She has always put in the effort to make birthdays, Easters and Christmases really special days for us. I like our special little traditions such as eating pancakes on Christmas morning.
14. When I was little, she used to leave notes for me in my lunchbox to surprise me at lunchtime. I loved getting those little notes so much.
15. No matter how old I get, she will always call me her baby...and I will always call her my mama.
I love you mama!
Sunday, 1 June 2014
Thursday, 22 May 2014
Tonight I'm taking a quick break from studying to tell you about a special love of mine- my love for books. There are few things more calming than cuddling up in bed with a good book and getting lost in it for a few hours.
My mama will attest to the fact that when I am on holiday in Australia staying with her, I will sometimes hole myself up in my bedroom for hours on end, consuming one book after another.
I would literally rather spend my spare time reading than going to a party (that is, unless said party involves karaoke...)
So now, I would like to recommend some of my favourite books to you guys. These are all books straight off my own bookshelf...books that I loved so much that I simply HAD to have a copy of my own to keep. Let me know if you've read/would like to read any of these- I'd love to hear from you in the comments!
The first book I want to mention is "October Baby", by Eric Wilson and Theresa Preston. In this case, I had actually seen the movie first, and that in itself had wrecked my heart. I thought I knew what I was getting myself into...but no. The book shattered my heart into a million tiny pieces, and then gently, lovingly, put those pieces back together. You WILL cry reading this book. I can almost guarantee it. But it's a good cry- a cry that leaves you feeling healed and restored. I recommend this book to everyone, but especially young women who might be feeling doubtful of their worth.
The second book I want to tell you about is "Captivating" by John and Stasi Eldredge. This book is so good, and so inspiring, that I find myself reading it at least twice a year. I think every woman needs to read this book. It has totally changed the way that I see myself, and I always feel so empowered and uplifted after reading this book.
The next book is a classic: "Jane Eyre" by Charlotte Bronte. I first read this book when I did a study on it in English class in my final year of high school. I find Jane's character so relatable, and always admire her strength through tough and unjust circumstances. There is also suspense in this book that will keep you on your toes, as well as romance. The perfect mix, in my opinion.
The next book I want to talk about is "The Shunning" by Beverly Lewis. This book is an incredible tale about finding yourself and what you believe, in a world where you are surrounded by people telling you what to say and do, or you will be "shunned". It made me look deep inside myself and ask "would I still hold fast to my faith, even if it meant having to leave everything I know and everyone I love behind?" This is a beautifully written story- I couldn't put it down.
"The Shack" by WM. Paul Young made me think about God and Christianity in ways that I never had before. It made me question what "faith" really means, and what a real relationship with God looks like. It also confronts the hard questions, such as "Where is God when I am hurting?" and "Why do bad things happen to good people?" I recommend this book to everyone, but especially Christians who want to have their relationship with God re-ignited and see His Father heart in a new way.
The Hunger Games Trilogy by Suzanne Collins have become recent favourites of mine. These books carry beautiful metaphors of love being about sacrifice, and show how empathy and the human spirit can still survive beneath terrible oppression. They are also incredibly well written- I devoured the entire series in a weekend :)
I own all 6 of Jane Austen's published works, and I think that all of them are fantastic. The female characters are especially well-rounded. They are witty, sarcastic, strong, and yet charming. These are women that would have gone against the grain of the time period that they were in. The men are dashing, mysterious, and chivalrous. The romances are sweet, elegant, and understated. These are must-reads for all book-lovers, in my opinion.
Ahhh, The Babysitters Club. Sweet, sweet nostalgia. God bless you, Ann M. Martin! This photo is of just one of my 400 (yes, 400!) Babysitters Club books that I own. I've been collecting them since I was nine. I grew up with the characters in these simple, sweet, wholesome novels. They have great messages such as teamwork, friendship, and the importance of family. The books also deal with sensitive topics such as death, divorce, racism, and domestic abuse in ways that are both honest and age-appropriate. Also, some of the supporting characters add great humour to the stories. They're a really easy read, and I still love them now, even as a 24-year-old.
This book, "Loving Our Kids On Purpose", by Pastor Danny Silk, is the best book on child-rearing that I've ever read (and I've read a LOT!) As an early childhood teacher, I found his strategies both practical and effective. He writes very conversationally, and I feel that this helps him to connect well with his readers.
"The Fault In Our Stars"by John Green is really hot right now, and for good reason. This book is incredibly well-written and heart-warming. It is honest and witty, sad and joyful. You will get swept up in the story, and charmed by the characters. I also can't wait for the movie to come out soon! Finally, it must be said that John Green is simply the best at everything. Ever.
"Little Women" by Louisa May Alcott was one of my absolute favourite books as a teenager, and I still love it to this day. I felt really connected to the characters, in particular Jo March. I still maintain that she is the book character I relate to the most out of any book I've ever read. This book is a classic, and one that I will definitely share with my children one day, when they are old enough. I look forward to sitting on my little girl's bed and reading to her each night before she goes to sleep, just like my mama used to do for me. I look forward to hearing her say "Just one more chapter mama! Pleeeease!" And I look forward to smiling down at her, tired as I may be, and saying "Of course, sweetheart".
And lastly, "Redeeming Love" by Francine Rivers. This book is a modern-day, loose interpretation of the book of Hosea in the Bible. It will break your heart. It will make you cry. It will open your eyes to people. It will open your eyes to love. You will be reminded of how God loves us: Gently. Passionately. Unconditionally. Forever.
There you go guys! I hope you all have a great week, and thanks for reading :)
Wednesday, 21 May 2014
Friday, 9 May 2014
Thursday, 1 May 2014
Wednesday, 23 April 2014
Thursday, 17 April 2014
Friday, 11 April 2014
Wednesday, 2 April 2014
Monday, 31 March 2014
Thursday, 27 March 2014
Friday, 7 March 2014
Saturday, 1 March 2014
Thursday, 13 February 2014
Monday, 10 February 2014
Recently I've been reading up on a phenomenon/ philosophy called "gentle parenting". Basically, it combines elements of attachment parenting and positive child guidance (both of which you guys already know that I'm a fan of).
I really like that there are people out there who are pro-actively looking for ways to improve how they parent, rather than just accepting the way they were brought up, or the "norm" (e.g. spanking or time-out).
I am actively trying to incorporate elements of gentle parenting into my practice as an ECE teacher. Some examples of this are:
Walking across the room and getting down to a child's level and speaking in a soft voice to them when I want to help them regulate their behaviour, as opposed to raising my voice at them from across the room.
Telling I child what I want to see them do, instead of telling them what I don't want to see.
Offering children more choices instead of always giving direct instructions.
Always believing in the child, and their abilities, celebrating what they are capable of instead of stressing over what they can't yet do.
Making sure that my words and actions towards them are always seasoned with love and grace, just as our heavenly Father is loving and gracious towards us.
Now, I know that sometimes my ideals don't always come to fruition, but my belief is that if I aim for the moon and miss, then at least I'll land among the stars :)
I hope this blog can help some of you guys, as much as it helps me :)
Wednesday, 5 February 2014
Wednesday, 29 January 2014
Friday, 24 January 2014
So, I am very excited to announce that my new video camcorder is on its way! It is expected to arrive on Wednesday or Thursday this week. It is a Genius HD camcorder. I am really looking forward to increasing the quality of the videos on my YouTube channel :)
Hope you all have a great week!