Time to reflect on the year

This year, I read 49 books. Compared to the...umm...I think 10 (*cringe*) books that I read last year, it's a lot! Ahem, so, for a little challenge and fun, I decided to pick out the top ten of the year. Enjoy!

Nonie's Top Ten Favorite Reads of 2009 (in no particular order):

1. The Queen's Thief trilogy (The Thief, The Queen of Attolia, and the King of Attolia)
2. The Hunger Games
3. The Last Olympian
4. The Goose Girl
5. The Mysterious Benedict Society (and MBS and the Perilous Journey)
6. I'd Tell You I'd Love You But Then I'd Have to Kill You
7. The Penderwicks (and also the Penderwicks on Gardam Street)
8. Forest Born
9. The Year of Secret Assignments
10. Graceling

Phew! This was my first time creating a top ten list for books, and I never knew it would be so difficult (yet fun)! Honestly, sorting everything out in the list was one of the hardest things I've done in a while. Mostly all the books I've read this were great, and I loved all of them, so it was especially hard to pick out the best ten. Since I couldn't decide between the sequels for a few of them, I just decided to put them all on the list. (After all, they are in the same series anyway.)

Here's a list of books that I loved that I couldn't bare to not mention them in this post, because they ROCK too much not to tell about: Cross My Heart and Hope to Spy, Don't Judge a Girl by her Cover, Catching Fire, Secrets of My Hollywood Life (1-3), The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane, Into the Wild and Out of the Wild, Rapunzel's Revenge, The House of Dance, Miss Spitfire, The Importance of Being Earnest, Enna Burning, River Secrets, and Dragon Slippers

Well, now that you saw the book lists, I'd like to present to you, another list...one not as arduous to make as the first one, but was still difficult-

Nonie's Top Favorites Movies watched for the first time this year (in this order):

1. Avatar ( it really is brilliant)
2. Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince (Daniel Radcliffe, Tom Felton, and Michael Gambon are amazing in this)
3. Princess Diaries
4. Pride and Prejudice (BBC w/ Colin Firth and Jennifer Ehle)
5. Indiana Jones (1-4)
6. Pride and Prejudice ( 2005 w/ Kiera Knightly)
7. Pirates of the Caribbean (1-3)
8. Where the Wild Things Are
9. Sky High (cheesy but at the same time, quite funny :P)
10. The Mummy (hehe...)

So there you have it. My top ten reads of the year and the top ten movies of the year. 2009 was a great year for the me, books & media-wise. I got introduced to a ton of amazing new authors and new movies, and my family had a little bonding time during the summer with most of these movies, so they're special to me. :-D

Well, time for me to conclude this post, sooo...hope everyone had a fantastic 2009, and that you'll have an even better 2010! Happy New Year's!


So I made some Chocolate Mousse...

For extra credit in French, I had to make some Mousse au Chocolate, all by myself. (Eek!...Le horror!) So, since I had to, I did. Alas, since I'm not such a wonderful cook, everyone else in my family was a little frightened to try it (oh, and they were just a teeny bit freaked out about raw eggs in the mousse). My brother was the only one brave enough to eat a spoon of it at first. Fortunately, he declared it edible and ate some more, and the rest of us slowly tried some. Unfortunately, a while later my brother announced that he got a huge stomachache, so the rest of us quickly took a step back from the mousse, and everyone else made me promise to never make it again.

The End of my Chocolate Mousse adventures.

Hey, at least I tried, and, I'm still getting the credit for making it (hehe).

Next year, I'm making the Buche de Noël for extra credit (there's always special holiday extra credit available every year in French), so hopefully that'll turn out ok, and not cause any stomachaches. Luckily, I have twelve months to practice. That should be enough time to get it right, right? :)

P.S. If you make some Chocolate Mousse in the future, I advise you to use ReadyWhip whipped cream (when you add the finishing touches on the mousse), instead of CoolWhip. ReadyWhip is thicker, has a better texture, and makes it look like a dessert made in a five-star gourmet restaurant. I used CoolWhip, and it dissolved in the chocolate in this really weird way that made it look soapy. So, yeah, ReadyWhip is pretty awesome.

Edit: My brother kindly pointed out to me that the ReadyWhip whipped cream is in fact not spelled like ReadyWhip; It's ReddiWhip. How embarrasing! *blush*


A Calvin & Hobbes Christmas

I don't know if I ever mentioned anything about it on this blog, but I adore Calvin & Hobbes. I've always loved them. The Christmas comic strips are one of the most funny, heartwarming, and touching ever.

(Sorry the pictures didn't exactly fit right. I provided a link to the strips if you can't see it properly. :-D Hope you like them!)

This one is hilarious and shows Calvin's dads' sense of humor (which I find very close to my dad's sense of humor):

Calvin writing a letter to Santa:

I have to admit, this strip makes me tear up a little whenever I read it, and it's one of my favorites.

I love this one a lot too.

And finally, because it's Christmas Eve:

Wishing everyone a wonderful, joyous, and a very merry Christmas!


A moment with irony

On Wednesday, we were supposed to have the first snowday of the year. According to weather.com, it was supposed to snow all night, and have around 6-7 inches. So Wednesday night, I come home, eat some fruit snacks, and start working. A couple of hours later, my mind starts thinking about the snowday. If we were going to have the day off, why finish all of our homework right then? I finished all my major homework; I only had a few worksheets left that could be finished in 30 minutes, so I could wake up at seven, finish everything by 8, and enjoy the rest of the day. So that's the schedule I decided to follow. I put my schoolbooks away, and start watching TV.

Turns out, we didn't have a snowday. There was only about two inches of snow on the ground, and two inches of snow is not a reason to close school (at least not in Michigan). With a little bit of groaning, my brother and I go back to school, and return to our regular schedule. During lunch, one of my friend admits he didn't do any of his homework because of the supposed-to-happen-snowday. Laughing, everyone at our table admits that there was some homework that each of us didn't do, and we take whatever we had to have done out, and finish it during lunch.

Later that evening in church, another friend of mine told me she stayed up until 11:30 doing her homework Tuesday night. I told her I did most of my homework, but confessed that there were a few worksheets that I slacked off on. She laughed, teased me, and took a bite of some carrot cake that we were eating at that time. Thursday morning, I find out that her school got the day off because some power failure (and her school is only about two minutes away from mine), and our school, was the one of only buildings in the area that managed to get electricity that day. Yay for us. :P

Lesson learned: Even if a snowday is expected for tomorrow, finish all your homework, just in case the weatherman is wrong, and maybe when you do all your homework when a snowday is expected, God will reward you with a lot of snow. ;)

( P.S. But usually, when a snowday is predicted, it ends up being a snowday. One day last year, where we had this suprise blizzard in the middle of April, and we got the day off. Now, that, was weird. )