Saturday, December 25, 2010

The Japan Adventure 2: Iwakuni Castle


The latest video adventure is here!
Follow Stephen and Mackenzie as the search for an ancient castle.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Hello from Iwakuni!


Hey everyone! First of all, yes, I made it here safely a week and a half ago.

Second, married life is wonderful. Soooooooooooooooooooo happy to be here.

Also so sad I'll have to leave again.



But anyways, I've decided to start a Vlog for this adventure. You can watch the first episode below, with more videos coming soon!




For those who for some reason refuse to watch this wonderful video (but you should, it's quite entertaining) The jist of it is:

I left LA, I made it here, hats are awesome, and my hubby is even more awesome.

Toodles. :) Pictures coming soon too!

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

The 19th Year

December 5th, 2010,was my 19th birthday. It rained a little bit as it usually does. A nice soft gentle rain calling you to run around in it and enjoy the freshness of pure water hitting your face.

Because I didn't want to get sick the week before seeing my husband, I stayed inside.

My 19th year, was, I can honestly say, the best year of my life so far. Of course, I say that every year, what else can I say? God is good, and each year I learn more about Him, and He's blessed me with so much.

So, time for a look back at all that has happened and what my hopes for my 20th year are.

Yes I go by birthday resolutions and not by new year's resolutions.



In my 19th year of life:

I turned 18 years old, and did not have a birthday party. I don;t like giving myself a party. But I do like making myself cakes. :D

I figured out that gluten was not good for me, and neither was much dairy, and that watching what I consumed would be beneficial if I wanted to live life without the pain attacks I had been getting.

I helped my fiance Stephen organize his room and his belongings and discovered I really like organizing and putting things in their proper place. I also found out my beloved is a major packrat. lol. I still love him dearly.

I said goodbye to Stephen at 4am on a Monday morning in December, knowing I wouldn't talk to him again for three months.

I flew to Georgia to visit my friend over new years. Us and several boxes of chocolate are not a good thing. ;)

I learned to talk to God about my life and it's problems, and that He really does listen and help. I learned I need to keep talking to him to better learn what His voice sounds like so I don't mix it up with my emotions and thoughts.

I learned it's sometimes best to keep your mouth shut and that not everyone wants to debate what is right and wrong and if something grey is black or white. For the good of everyone, some things aren't that important and I shouldn;t be all concerned about everything being perfect and right.

I got pulled over by a cop for the first time in my life. My brights were on. Whoops.

I got quite good at swing dancing. Hurray coffee depot!

I continued teaching Theatre and began directing/choreographing the biggest musical I had attempted yet!

I learned that a relationship can survive without talking to someone everyday. And that the mail doesn't deliver letters fast enough.

On a Thursday in March I finally got talk to my love face to face again and not just by snail mail. And boy, did he look hot. ;)

Looking at a picture of us, I saw he looked great and in shape with all his nice muscles... and I looked... not so great, and not so in shape. :(

I dropped him off at his next training 10 days later. At least this time I could talk to and see him on weekends.

I spent the next few weekends driving down to Pendleton to see my hon whenever I could.

On a Tuesday in April, I put him on a place to Virgina. Not knowing when I would get to see him in person next, or knowing when in the world we would ever get to get married!

I got my braces off in April! My mom didn't notice. Even this past week, other people were still beginning to notice they were gone.

Pinocchio was a huge success. I would like to thank my producer, my mom, and the entire cast for the excellent work. Families were blessed and enjoyed the entertainment. Yay theatre!

I decided to kick my own butt and look great for my wedding whenever it would be.

I looked for job after job after job... nothing.

I got a event filming job, and enjoyed editing the DVDs. DVD menus and credits are fun to create.

I filmed a short PSA.

I got in shape. And was the healthiest I had been in a long time.

On June 22, 2010, Stephen IMed me a message saying he was being stationed in Japan at the end of July. SAY WHAT?????

I thought about it for a millisecond, decided "Why not?" (my new catchphrase) and said "Alright, I'm coming with you, let's get married."

Thank God for my mom and her ability to get things done quick. We booked the place and started making wedding arrangements.

On June 25th, I announced my wedding date: exactly a month away.

Right after midnight on July 2nd, I picked up my beloved at the airport. On July 2nd, we kissed for the very first time.

On July 6th, we were legally married at the courthouse. I wore a simple blue summer dress, and he wore a nice collared shirt and tan pants. It was just us, our parents, and each of our youngest siblings in attendance. Afterwards, we ate at Olive Garden.

That day, we began the adventure of driving everywhere around southern California turning in paperwork for him and me and us and the government and AAAAHHHH!!! Too much driving!!!!!!!!!!

The next week was a honeymoon at Disneyland. A place full of many relationship memories. And I'll just say I sure do like being married. ;)

Unfortunately, had to go back home at the end of the week and do more paperwork and wedding planning!

Was so stressed out about everything i didn;t bother to tell people we wee already married. Too much going on, and I just wasn't ready to deal with questions at the moment. I was very stressed and I hope people forgive me for avoiding sharing details of my life then. 

The day before my wedding, I felt... pregnant. 

The day before my wedding I fund about about a job with a movie. I applied.

On July 25th, 2010 I married my best friend on the most perfect and beautiful day. Everything was wonderful and pretty, and everyone had a great time, and all I can say is thank you God that was exactly what I wanted it to be like. I was dressed in the most beautiful dress ever and my man looked so handsome in is dress blues. Everyone else looked great to in the wonderful world of turquoise.

The next morning, July 26th, I took my husband to the airport and put him on a plane to Japan.

Came home, ate some wedding cake and watched movies with my family.

Realized People took over 3000 pictures of my wedding. O_O Went through ALL of them.

Facebook photo tagging spree!

Kept getting moodier, kept eating A LOT, and kept denying I was pregnant.

Finally admitted I was pregnant. The hormones wee hitting at full force and i had every symptom in the book.

I got an important email. I had got the internship with the film!!! I HAD A JOB!!!

August 15th, I heard God speak clearly, asking if I would trust Him and praise Him in all things. I said Blessed be your name Lord, I will. August 16th, I suddenly didn't feel pregnant anymore. I started bleeding. On August 17th, I miscarried my baby: Issac Joy Marts

I learned more about God's heart, and his love. He never let me go.

On September 1st, I flew out to Virginia to begin work on the movie.

During the time, I learned what the body of Christ looked like and got to know and love several dear people.

Since it was the Murphy's law of film,I spent the next 3 months learning how to handle and work through lots of very interesting situations. wow, a lot can happen in a day.

I got paychecks, and I discovered what Mondays and Fridays are.

Learned you can really live with minimal sleep. It's not recommended.

I fell out of shape, my diet was poor and my pains came back. Time to start over working out and eating right again. Dang.

Stephen and me tried our hardest to make it work so I could live in Japan with him. After laying our options out and discussing and praying we felt at peace to not live together at the moment. Do we like the arrangement? Absolutely not. It just made the most sense with what we know from our options no details need to be given (it really is the best choice at the moment).

But... I got my plane ticket to visit him over Christmas and new years! WHOOT!!!!!

Visited my friend in Georgia on the way back from Virginia, and we decided to live together in Orlando Florida next year. Once again, why not?

Came home and slept. And slept. And slept.And slept. And slept. Still sleeping on and off right now!

On December 3, went to Disneyland with my family for my birthday. Had a lovely time.

And on December 5th, went to church, came home, ate cookies, and hung out around here.



So that was the highlights of my year in a nutshell.

My hopes for next year?

To learn to love God more, and follow him more obediently, and show others not only His love, but the fact they need Jesus to save them from their sins so they can have eternal life with God and not go to hell, separated from His presence forever.

My year will be spent following His lead. It's really all I can do or want to do. he knows best. :)

Happy birthday to me! lol.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

The Long but still a Cliff Notes Version RECAP!

Hello out there Internet World!!! Long time no speak.

Soooo....

Finished my job with the film on November 20th. It was a long three months but I'm still so glad I got the opportunity. Met some really great people and learned a LOT. Hopefully I'll get to work with some of mu buddies again. :) Love you all!!!

My life back home was, kinda put aside while working.  12-14 hour days means little time for much else besides the film. You do grow really close to your coworkers however, and I am so thankful for the Quality INTERNship church. (our self made nickname.) These friends were dear and helped me thru a lot of the emotional and physical baggage I had obtained from the obvious stresses. (see this post) before coming out to work.

 I got to see a lot of countryside,and experience something I've never really experienced before: fall! In California, we really don't get to experience the fullness of seasons. The colors were amazing. The vivid oranges, the striking reds, the shining yellows, all mixed in a kaleidoscope among the greens and blues of the mountains. It was like a oil painting sprung to life. A perfect picture painted by the master craftsman. Breathtaking.

I should have taken more pictures than I did. But I was also driving most of the time, so probably bad idea. I'm a scary enough driver without added distractions! ;)

As I mentioned in our last post, we lost a coworker named Joe Ruggerio. He was a good man, a gentleman from another time, a rugged outdoors man, and a pirate! It's a sad loss, and please continue to pray for his family. Where was he spiritually? I honestly don't know. All I know is that God gives everyone a chance to come to Him and I have peace in that knowledge.

It was a stressful night/weekend when h died. As it was our last day in that location and we had to move to another state the next day! I have to commend our crew for the job they did, keeping themselves and the team strong to handle everything going on and keep the show running. Everyone held up incredibly well under the circumstances. We were able to hold a memorial service for Joe with his family the following week and  think it was a good night of releasing emotion for everyone.

The picture wrapped mid November, and I finished my job (after many months of traveling thru way too many patches of scary trees) November 19th. The next day I flew to Atlanta to visit my friend Jen, and while talking about the fact she needed a roommate still for her apartment in Florida, her mom said something about me, and we all had a "DUH!" moment. So, mid February, I'm gonna be moving to Orlando and trying to get work at a theme park down there. (cough, Disney hire me please, cough. ;) ) And if theme parks don;t work out, there's other jobs and it's a new environment and experience, so why not?


In case your wondering, I can't live with my hubby in Japan. We went through all our options (aka, hours of phone calls and panicking about missing deadlines for me) and decided that at this moment it would be better for us to live apart. We both felt a peace about it and know God will have us where he will for HIS glory. It would be nice to be in the same time zone eventually, but until then, it's trust and long loving phone conversations between US girl and Japan guy. I miss you hon!

But... I will get to see my Stephen December 11th. :D That's right, I'm flying over there for a lovely Christmas visit (and a long overdue honeymoon. ;) ) Gonna be there about a month and looking forward to spending time with my guy in person!

He still has to work while I'm there, so while I'm sitting at the hotel alone, I'll be working on my screenplay about a modern day Paul the Apostle (based on a true story) and putting together the creative elements for ICAP Theatre's spring show. So I shall be able to do my own creative stuff again, and hopefully, the work hours from this past film will help me schedule myself and be productive.

Till next time, yours truly, IN CHRIST

Mackenzie Evans Marts

P.S. Do you like my hat? :)

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

A Simple Prayer

Jesus, thank you for everything. I am nothing without you.
Create in me a clean heart, oh God.
Let me learn how to love others with your love,
and let me not forget to number my days.
Let me fill every moment with praise.
Teach me dilligence to study your word and know your truth.
And may everyone see your light and your love,
and follow you.

Hello all. I'm still working on the film Alone Yet Not Alone, therefore I cannot speak much of anything that's been going on lately. (signed a contract and all. ;) )

What I can tell you is that we lost a dear coworker in an accidnet last friday. Please keep in your prayers the family and friends of Joe Ruggerio.
http://www.lehighvalleylive.com/slate-belt/index.ssf/2010/10/family_remembers_pen_argyl_man.html

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Pics from the Wilderness

I'm so glad to be here working, at the same time, it is a LOTof work, and... i really really really would like to be i the same place as my husband!

The last coupe days have been nice here. Most of the crew is shooting in a different location so it's been VERY quiet up here. Had time to finally regather thoughts and catch my breath. Or at least, attempt to. Non beneficial eating habits ever since production started have caught up. So has the non sleeping much problem. Results = Not so lovely. Been short of breath and energy and other various symptoms you really don't wanna hear about. But, I have gone back on my diet, got me some carrot juice at Wal Mart (super wal marts are amazing!!!) and am going to make sure I stay on it. I want to be healthy again! The non healthiness isn't very pleasant.


Been also hard to find time to read the Bible, or talk to anyone outside this production. Me and Stephen make sure to talk once a day, which is good, cause as all the counseling books say, communication is key! I love him so much, and am sooooo thankful we get to be together... even if we aren;t in the same vicinity! lol, we don't fit any sort of mold. Still haven't gotten any official word that I can go visit my beloved husband in Japan this December, but he has been trying very hard to make it work out. There's waaaaaay too much paperwork involved with this business! But yeah.. I kinda married the guy cause I'd like to be able to spend time with him, you know? Been praying hard it'll work out.

Even though it's been kinda up and down on good times and not so good times, one thing is constant. God never fails to remind me of His love. There's been a few times where I have felt so alone lately, but little things and reminders will happen, and I remember I am not alone.

One of the dear gals here has been encouraging in reminding us with a quote from C.S. Lewis' The Screw tape Letters. In it, The elder demon advises his young padawan that humans are most dangerous when they look around, and cannot see God, because if they still have faith even in the darkest times, they will be the most on fire for their savior. Even though we are not really in any major dark times here (yes, it's stressful, but hey, we're making a movie!!! Stress is part of the job!)

When I do get to read the Bible, the passages usually will have something jump out at me that was on my mind that day. One such reminder is the fact that I work in an incredibly beautiful place! I mean, my drive into work could be a lot worse you know. ;)

And yesterday, we passed through low fog clouds and the sun came shining through them and through the trees and for a moment we went trough a color kaleidoscope! One of those rare moments that take your breath away and you get a glimpse at what the beauty of heaven looks like.

Below I've posted some pictures of my daily drive. Enjoy!












And here is my lovely vechicle. :)



I'm just kidding! I do drive the little cart around a lot here at work, but they won;t let me take it on the interstate. ;)

Hope you all are well, God Bless, and....



Friday, September 24, 2010

Working, working, all day long!

Hello from Roanoke VA! I've been here since September 1st and have been working on  production almost everyday! There's been ups and there's been downs, and I can't believe it's only been 3 and a half weeks since i moved out here.
First of all, the intern group is seriously one of the most amazing and wonderful groups of people I've ever met. They're so kind, and loyal, and passionate about Jesus. I was not doing too well physically or emotionally during my first week here, and they were right there for me, to cry and pray with me even though I'd only known them two days! I love you guys!!! And I'm so thankful to God I've gotten to share this experience with so many awesome people. Unfortunately, some of the interns have to leave this weekend. You know it can happen, but it happened to soon for all of us and we are going to miss them dearly. But, we have hope to see them again, if not here on earth, then in the air with Jesus! Or, of course, on facebook. ;)
On the film, My job is a Production Office PA (production assistant). That occupation is basicially helping with logistics. It is our job to be a backbone of the production, keeping everything running smoothly, on time, and in budget. We handle phone calls,  transportation coordination, rentals, catering, purchases for the different departments, schedules, paperwork of all shapes sizes and colors, and any other little random thing that pops up that no one else is officially supposed to handle.

Even though I'm locked up in the office most of the time, there have been a few occasions where I have been able to go onto set and watch the filming. It's neat to be on a bigger production than a single camera. I knew before how much work went into making a movie, but I don;t think I understood exactly how much work it really is until getting here! It's amazing how a group of people from every single different walk of life and personality it takes to make a movie.

Also, I have found out golf carts are very fun things to drive around. I like my little golf carts. :)

Well, gotta go back to work!

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Hello from Phoenix!


Hello everyone! Right now I'm sitting in the Phoenix airport waiting for next flight. Traveling to Virgina today for production on the film. So while waiting, thought I'd post a little.

First of all, thank you so much those who have left me encouraging comments an have been prayng for me. I really appreicate it. The past few weeks have been up and down. Some days I'm totally fine emotionally, and other days I just kind of sit in depression. It's not like it's weighing weighing me down, it's just there and comes and goes. I am doing better than I had been though, and still totally believe God is good.

My body though isn't on the same process things fast time schedule as I am though. Been banned from doing most of the physical activities I usually do for 6 weeks. (my poor Jillian Michaels DVD is getting dusty!) But I know they're probably right. I just would like my self to heal faster so i can get back to being physical and not feeling like a weakling.

Last weekend was the annual Southern California Above Rubies retreat that my family puts on for the magazine. (did I mention we do a little bit of everything). We had a lot of new people, and both the regulars and them were totally blessed and inspired by Colin and Nancy's messages, and fellowshipping with other like minded people. Also, we had a man accept Christ and get baptised at the end. Like I said, GOD IS GOOD!

On monday, I went to Disneyland with my family one last time before I left for a few months. I spent the whole day taking my darling sister Jordan (girly) around. We had fun! And my favorite moment was girly getting to dance in the Celebrate You parade with Pinocchio! I also bought her a pink mickey ear hat for her birthday (in a few weeks) since she keeps stealing my mouse ears at home.

Then this morning, got on a plane... and slept the whole first flight, lol. I was so tired. I didn't sleep last night, but I did get to talk to my husband for a few hours! He's such a great encourager, really helped me get up and be ready to go on this trip. (thanks Hon, I love you!)

I'm slightly annoyed at myself that I slept through initial take off since its one of my favorite parts of flying. While putting yourself in the hands of a complete stranger and their aircraft at 30,000 feet or so in the air isn't really the safest thing to do in the world, I like it. Soaring above the clouds, makes you realize how fun life is, and at the same time, how big the world is. I look down at the cities from above, and see all the cars and the people, and wonder what their life is like, what do they believe, where are they going, and are they having a good day?

Flying itself, especially taking off, is just a thrill. I mean, we are flying! It's common now, but it's still cool.


So there's your sleep induced ramble for the day. For any who may actually have read that, here's a picture of the carpet for you. I think it's cool and very airplaned themed, lol.


Thursday, August 19, 2010

Life

Hello everyone. have good and bad news in this update, so i'll just write through it all chronologically.

First of all, Stephen and I were married!!! We only had exactly one month to plan the wedding, but God worked everything out amazingly and it was so beautiful! I couldn't have asked for a better day.


I'm working on getting a photobucket album of the pics up for those who wish to look through them.

The video of the ceremony can be found here. (there are 3 parts) Our friend who officiated our ceremony did such a wonderful job,  it was short, sweet, and pointed to our Lord.



There are so many crazy stories about this wedding and I'm actually thinking of writing me and Stephen;s whole story because the whole thing could only have been orchestrated by God!

One crazy stunt at the wedding though is our beloved Groomsmen. lol, they were such a kick!


All too soon, my USMC husband had to fly out to Japan where he is currently stationed. We once again learned how to communicate even though we are 16 hours and over 5,000 miles apart. It's tough sometimes (especially when I had to get up at 2am if  wanted to talk!) but we worked it out.


There's no news yet on paperwork processing if I'll be able to actually live with my husband in Japan! Right now, they're saying it would be a miracle for it to happen, but I believe in miracles, so I'm still hoping I get to go. I'm planning on visiting in December and can't wait to see my husband again!




I also got a job on a independent Christian feautre film, so I'll be living mostly in Virgina for the next three months working on the movie as a production offcie assistant. :)


But, along with much joy, there also comes sorrow. 


Last week, we found out we had been blessed with a honeymoon baby. I got to enjoy feeling pregnant (aka lots of nausea and eating like a horse) for three days.

Monday night, I started bleeding and on Tuesday, August 17, I miscarried our baby.

My body has been doing what it's supposed to do through this situation, and is healing fine. My heart though will never be the same as you can imagine. It's been tough on both of us, but at the same time, we would like to share how great our God is. HE was totally with me the whole time through all the pain and agony, both physically and emotionally. He gave me comfort, let me know that he has my child now and is taking care of him for me, and even though I may never understand why, He has a reason for this, and most importantly HE IS IN CONTROL. In that, I have found so much joy and peace and even though I am really really really bummed out, and am grieving over the loss of my child, at the same time, am so incredibly happy because of I know Jesus is Lord.

A verse that helped me through this was Psalm 16:8-9. 8
"I have set the LORD always before me. Because he is at my right hand,  I will not be shaken. Therefore my heart is glad and my tongue rejoices; my body also will rest secure,"

Even though this little one was only a few weeks old, I definitely know there was a life. (And yes, I do know for sure this was a pregnancy and miscarriage, but will not be posting the details here.) We decided to name the baby Isaac Joy Marts, because Isaac means laughter, and even though we are sad, we totally trust God and can still laugh and rejoice in HIM. I can't wait to get to heaven even more now because there I'll get to meet a special person I didn't get to know here!

Thank you to all the people who were paying for us, and prayer is still very much appreciated.

So that's been my life for the past few weeks! Hope you all are doing well and always, always trust Jesus. HE IS LORD!


Friday, August 6, 2010

Time Waster PSA


What is this? Is that a video? Mackenzie actually made a video? A non theater performance related video? A video with no copyright restrictions that she can actually post?


Yes she did!!! And yes, it's just a short PSA, but it was made during one of the craziest month ever of my life, and it's the start of several others that i will actually be able to post when done. (yay for original material. ;) ) So enjoy. :)




the inspiration behind this is the fact I have wasted lots of precious time in the past, and I hope not to fall into the procrastination habitation again.

Friday, June 25, 2010

Save the Date!

The wedding of Stephen and Mackenzie will be taking place July 25th, 2010!


Why so soon?

Well...

we will be moving to...

Iwakuni, Japan!


And I can't wait to see what the Lord has in store for our lives. :)

Friday, June 18, 2010

Go see TOY STORY 3!!!


There are movies in this world.


There are good and even better movies too.

then there are PIXAR movies.

Seriosiuly, go see Toy Story 3 this weekend. Please help PIXAR have a HUGE opening weekend. Their movies are the best and we need to support quality entertainemnt.

Full review (spoiler and non spoiler) coming soon.

Once again,


GO SEE IT!!!!!!

Sunday, May 30, 2010

Groovin' with Ken! (Toy Story 3)

If you hadn't noticed, I LOVE pixar movies. I think they have the best films ever made. That being said, I am really excited about and looking forward to Toy Story 3!

And I already found my new favorite Character.

Ken! (of Barbie and Ken)

Here he is sporting his animal lovin' safari outfit.


This character, besides being incredibly amusing and voiced perfectly by Michael Keaton, is an example of how much detail goes into PIXAR's characters.

First, this Ken was a real Ken Doll. You can see here the original trailer for the Animal Lovin' Safari set. (and yes, this is real, not a PIXAR viral invention)


There's a quote, that I can't find at the moment, by John Lassater in talking about this guy's development. The main point of this toy's personality is the fact that he doesn't think he's a "girl's toy". He thinks he's cool and that boys would play with him. He also has never met a Barbie before.

PIXAR is also known well for their amazing animation. You can see in this clip below, not only is his character well personified in his lines and voice, but his actions and movement. The look of the whole film is beautiful, with a realistic yet still animated feel.

This video one was shown at Comic Con last year. First time they revealed a new character. it's even funnier when you're watching it with 6,000 of your closest friends. ;)


So, that was Ken, and I hope you'll all go out and support PIXAR by seeing Toy Story 3!!!




(no, this very fan-girl post was not sponsored by PIXAR. ;) Mackenzie is allowed to be a nerd too.)

Friday, May 28, 2010

Reading is Swell!

All too often I hear people saying stuff that's totally and completely re-donk-u-lous. They hear something, and assume they are suddenly informed on everything about that subject. Or, they follow the arty line of what everyone else is saying/believes on the subject. It happens most when people talk about different religions (no matter what you believe, at least respect others enough to know what it is exactly they believe!) and politics.

Today's citizens and politicians support programs and bills... but they never actually ready them. They hear the summary and assume the rest based on their worldview.


So let's take a lesson from the Reading Frog, and learn the importance of reading things before judging them.




Thank you and have a nice day. :)



Thanks to Roger Hedgecock for video.
Arizona Immigration bill found here.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

The End of the "LOST" story.

In creating a story, one of the most important things to consider is the payoff. Will your audience feel satisfied watching the story? Will they feel you have resolved the questions you presented to them? And will your intended meaning reach them?


Really good stories are able to blend the plot resolve and meaning into a solution that makes the audience feel rewarded for reading or watching the narrative.

Most filmed stories seem to lean towards one or the other. For example, most  summer "popcorn" flicks present a nice wrapped up conclusion to their story, but it usually lacks meaning. Audiences who just want to be entertained usually view these movies.

Dramas will present character growth in a way that also challenges the viewer to take the meaning and apply it to their own life.

Another popular genre is the mystery. It usually focuses on the puzzle pieces of the case, inviting the audience to guess and piece together the answer, seeing if they were right in the end.


Stories that are well received usually stick to their own genre. Even if there are plot twists and surprises, it generally does not go into the realm of "what the... just happened?"

To suddenly throw a incredibly ridiculous and unnatural plot twist into a story is known as "jumping the shark" or, as I prefer to call it,  "nuking the fridge". (no, I am not fond of the wannabe an Indiana Jones 4 movie.)

After the ending of the TV show LOST last Sunday, many fans felt the popular TV show had gone absurd in the final 15 minutes, and that they had wasted six years of their lives. Others connected with the story and were satisfied with the ending.

My analysis and thoughts of "The End" (LOST 6x17) after the jumping shark.


The Unsung Heroes of Cinema.


In anything in life, there's always a group of people who are the hardest workers. The ones who bring everything together. Who are the forgotten, yet extremely important people of the film industry?


The guys who make the credits at the end of the film.

And no, I'm not talking about the people who do the graphic animation on some really cool credits sequences, like this one from Ratatouille.







No, I'm talking about whoever types every single name into the credits.


These are the backbone of the entire industry. The people who have to make sure they include EVERY single name of EVER single person who had any small part of making the film.

And they also have to include their children's' names! (production babies)

They have to make sure every single copyright is in place.

Every name is under the correct department, and in the politically correct order of the list. 

and...

TEHY HVAE TO MKAE SRUE THYE AER SLPELED RIHGT!!!


These people deserve an award. Remember their hard work as you leave the movie theater as soon as the credits start rolling, not even bothering to give a few seconds of recognition to the people who put it all together for you.

Have a nice day.*

(*remember, Mackenzie is the queen of sarcasm, and is not mad if you leave the theater without watching the credits, however, she thinks it's polite to stay through the whole thing.)

Friday, May 21, 2010

Pinocchio Pictures!

Since I can't legally post the play on this blog, because the rights belong to the amazing LifeHouse Theater,  I'm giving you a quick slideshow so you can see the amazing characters of the play! Enjoy. :)



We auditioned Mid December, and rehearsed once a week, for an hour and a half, from January to April.

In April, we added a few more rehearsal days, put all the costumes, makeup, sets, and props together, and polished up everything.

There were 22 people in the cast from ages 6 to 18. And they took everything I threw at them and made it great.

The result. Amazingness! They did such a wonderful job! I'm so glad I got to teach and direct them this year. It's been such a great experience, and blessing. :)

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

LOST 6x10 “The Package

"For never was a story of more woe, than this of Juliet and her Romeo."

The tale of two doomed lovers by William Shakespeare has been the inspiration of many other stories, where the beautiful damsel and her handsome lover are kept apart by external circumstances. LOST’s own lovebirds, Jin and Sun Kwon, have been given their own Shakespearian tale over the course of LOST.



Thoughts on episode 6x10, “The Package” after the jump.



Sunday, May 2, 2010

the play went well!!!

My theatre class performed Pinocchio last night, and they did an amazing job! For many, it was their first show ever, and they acted like professionals and gave wonderful performances. :D 

Now that the play is over. Updates will be coming again, along with the video of the play, and a how to on that nose if anyone wants to build their own. See yas!

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Blog Tag! What book would you live in?

I have been tagged by araken to name 8 books I would like to live in for a week, and then tag 8 more people. This is a bit of a challenging one for me, since I really like my own world! lol! But here we go. :)

1. The Chronicles of Narnia.
Narnia has played such a huge role in my life. A production of the Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe when I was 6 years old sparked my desire to do theatre, and helped my understand Jesus' sacrifice on the cross. I'd love to live in Narnia becuase it is a land filled with wonderful, good creatures living under the protection and love of Aslan. And he wouldn't want a talking beaver as a neighbor?

2. The Hobbit and the Lord of the Rings
I've always wanted to live in the Shire. So nice and friendly with lovely green hills. And If I wanted to travel, lots of interesting places around Middle Earth, but then back home to the beautiful Shire. Wow, I really am a homebody, aren't I?

3. The Christy Miller Series.
This is probably a cheat, since this is basically the world I do live in. MY life has had so many elements and places from this series, it's incredibly funny. But I would also like to meet and hang with the characters. They are such Godly young people, I'd love to talk with them. :)

4. The Door Within
Fighting for truth and justice in a fantasy world with interesting places and people? Sign me up!

5. Anne of Green Gables
I've always thought it would be fun to live in Avonlea. The people are pleasant, and so is the culture. Beware of gossipy neighbors though. ;)

6. Lemony Snickett's Series of Unfortunate Events
Yes, this selection is asking for a strange morbid death if you live in this world. But it would just be so fun! Until you die in a unusual fashion that is.

7. Black Beauty
From my horse riding days, I had always wanted to be in this world where connections between horse and rider were so natural and almost surreal.

8. The Generation Series
This is not a published book series, yet, it's written by a friend of mine., I would like to spend a week in that world becuase it's set 20 years in the future, and highly resembles the way I believe America is headed. I'd want to spend time there to learn about how I should prepare for the hard times coming.

From the Beginning of Time... (LOST 6x9 "Ab Aeterno")

What's your worldview? Do you believe in God? Do you not? Which God? Are we products of chance or by design? The most important decision anyone can make in this life is what they believe. As storytellers, the most important decision we can also make for creating characters is deciding what they believe, because all their actions in life will derive from their ideals or faith.

A look at the mythological and belief driven episode of LOST, "Ab Aeterno", after the jump.


Friday, April 9, 2010

A Rose by any Other Name… (LOST 6x8 “Recon”)

…would have just as many thorns. Hello readers! I’ve found time to write again, (without having to detonate a nuclear bomb, thankfully!) and I’m catching up on my LOST analysis. A look at the different sides of Sawyer/James Ford in the two LOST realities after the jump!




Tuesday, March 30, 2010

My Marine!

Just wanted to share this pic of me and my man. :)





So this past week as busy, spending time with my hon on his leave of course, and constructing sets and costumes for pinocchio! (By the way, Buffalo Breath Costumes in San Diego is AMAZING!!!)

Anyways, regular posting shall resume this week, with a recap of tonight's LOST epi, (just skipping recon and ab aterno because of other things needing to be done) then diving into the health care bill. see you soon!

Monday, March 22, 2010

The Health Care "Reform"

This week, I will be reading through the 1990 page bill on health care reform, and writing a post about it. If there's any questions you have about it, or about how this will affect you please post them here and I will provide answers from the bill as I find them, and offer my analysis.

And of course, I am VERY opposed to this, and will be providing my reasons why. If you are for it, I would also love to hear your opinions (especially if your reasons are from the actual bill.)

Bill can be read here: http://docs.house.gov/rules/health/111_ahcaa.pdf

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Redeeming a Monster (LOST 6x7 “Dr. Linus”)

Even though I’ve been hanging with my family and friends, I want to make sure I keep up with writing once a week! So here’s this week’s LOST analysis. :)


Audiences love their villains. Possibly, because in truth, we all are or were once some sort of villain. For whatever reason, these baddies grasp our attention. An important part of good villains, however, is the chance that they might turn to the good side. Redemption is possible for anyone until they die, and to see an evil person change is an incredible experience.
On LOST, it may be possible one of the islands major villains has turned to the light. Or is he bluffing? An analysis of Benjamin Linus’ character and episode after the jump.


Wednesday, March 10, 2010

“Oorah!”

My fiancé is going to be home!!! :D



I haven’t seen him for three long months because he’s been away at the United States Marine Corps Basic Training. (Aka boot camp.) He’s only going to be home for ten days, so may or may not blog during that time. Obviously, spending time with him comes first. ;)



Hope everyone has a great week! I know I will. :D

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

You don’t always get what you want. (LOST 6x6 “Sundown”)

Have you ever had instances where you want something really, really, really bad? So bad, you’d do anything to get it? It’s so important; you believe life is worthless without it? And, have you ever gotten that desire fulfilled… only to find that it wasn’t that favorable, or it has made your life worse? I call this the “It’s a Wonderful Life” theme. It happens when somebody gets what they wish for, then discovers everything is worse because of it.

The account of Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden shows one of the most severe cases of this idea. What were the first two humans promised by the serpent if they ate the forbidden fruit? That their eyes would be opened and they would know good and evil like God did. That is what they got, except not in the way they expected. They now knew evil as well as good because they, by disobeying God’s law, became evil. Instead of fellowship with their creator, they had to seek redemption. Instead of trusting God’s plan for their life, they tried to set their own path, and because obviously, they did not have God’s perfect knowledge, their new life, and the whole earth’s life, was horrible compared to what they could have had.

In last week’s episode of LOST, they explored the “It’s a Wonderful Life” aka “Be careful what you wish for!” theme. After the jump, my thoughts on episode 6x6: “Sundown”. (And this time, we have pictures!)


Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Daddy Issues (LOST 6x5 “The Lighthouse”)

"Luke, I am your father."
NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!



Fathers are important. Many flaws and conflicts stem from characters' issues with their father. From Hercules to Luke Skywalker to Inigo Montoya; many paths and destinies in life are related to how people were treated by their daddies.

Verses in the Bible speak of this conept, saying the sins of the fathers are visited on the sons. Other verses show that this does not mean the children are cursed for their fathers’ actions; rather, it implies two things. One, since parents are responsible for their kids, the actions they take in life affect their offspring greatly. Two, the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree. People usually end up with the same traits and flaws as their parents.



This idea of “Daddy Issues” is the overall main theme of the TV show, LOST.



(thoughts on “The Lighthouse” after the jump.)



Saturday, February 27, 2010

Earthquake Preparedness! (PLEASE READ)

Since major earthquakes are striking the globe right now, please read the links below to make sure you are prepared for when one DOES (not if) hits you!

http://www.fema.gov/hazard/earthquake/eq_during.shtm

http://sheepdogfiles.blogspot.com/2010/02/dealing-with-catastrophe.html


THE BASICS:

- During a earthquake, duck and cover. Stay away from breakables, and DO NOT try to run outside until the quake is over.

- Be prepared beforehand. If you haven't already, get to the store and stock up on water, non perishable food, medical supplies, batteries, flashlights and a propane stove/gas tanks.

- In an emergency, you will BE ON YOUR OWN. Stay with your family, and protect your supplies.

- DO NOT EXPECT HELP.

- Most of all, keep a good outlook on life and find something to live and survive for. Be that religion, family, self preservation, anything you hold dear. You must stay alive during this.

- Spend the time you have NOW preparing for disaster. It will eventually come. You should always be ready.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

"We're going to party like it's 1984!"

When I'm not being creative, I usually am researching, or writing about the events going on in the world today.

In the following post on The Reformation, I discuss how America's government is beginning to resemble the totalitarian world found in George Orwell's novel, "1984". Read it at the link below!

http://socalreformation.ning.com/profiles/blogs/were-gonna-party-like-its-1984?xg_source=msg_appr_blogpost

Friday, February 19, 2010

Lies, Lies, Lies! (LOST 6x4 “The Substitute”)

     Most people lie at some point in their life. Some do so significantly more than others. Those who lie constantly fall into one of the following definitions. (Definitions by www.askville.amazon. com .)

“ Pathological Liar: A pathological liar is usually defined as someone who lies incessantly to get their way and does so with little concern for others. Pathological lying is often viewed as coping mechanism developed in early childhood and it is often associated with some other type of mental health disorder. A pathological liar is often goal-oriented (i.e., lying is focused - it is done to get one's way). Pathological liars have little regard or respect for the rights and feelings of others. A pathological liar often comes across as being manipulative, cunning and self-centered.”

and

“Compulsive Liar: A compulsive liar is defined as someone who lies out of habit. Lying is their normal and reflexive way of responding to questions. Compulsive liars bend the truth about everything, large and small. For a compulsive liar, telling the truth is very awkward and uncomfortable while lying feels right. Compulsive lying is usually thought to develop in early childhood, due to being placed in an environment where lying was necessary. For the most part, compulsive liars are not overly manipulative and cunning (see, Pathological Liar), rather they simply lie out of habit - an automatic response which is hard to break and one that takes its toll on a relationship.”

     Another type of lying is a type everyone suffers from greatly: Self Deception. The Bible tells us the heart is deceitful above all else. We can easily lie to ourselves, considering ourselves to either be greater or less than we are, to fit our preconceived viewpoint, or our prideful wants. Everyone should do a self examination to see who and what we truly are.

     The characters of LOST can fit into ALL of these three categories. After the jump, my analysis of episode 6x4, “The Substitute.”


Thursday, February 18, 2010

“I know where I’ve been.”

History is very important to everyone. The history of the world has formed how we currently live. When developing both settings and characters, it is important to create a back-story. Do you have to share any of it with the readers? Nope! Sometimes, a back story to your story is so drawn out, it should be embarrassing for you to even reveal it to the populace, and should stay in your mind only! (*cough* Star Wars prequels *cough*)
Part of life, is learning about your friends past lives. However, when you meet someone, do you sit down and tell each other your entire past right off the bat? Usually not! Al though I know some who do… Anyways, your characters shouldn’t either.

Things to think about when developing your characters back story are: their childhood, relations with friends and family, work, hobbies, interests, faith, beliefs, religion, where they grew up, and where and when they have lived.

In my script I’m currently working on, I have a character named Paul, who’s 70 years old, and emigrated from Romania in his 20s or 30s (yet to be determined.) In researching that time period of Romania, I learned quite a few things about Paul. First, he grew up with a communistic government, with religious officials being taken to concentration camps. Since, Paul would have attended the Romanian Orthodox Church during his childhood and teenage years while this persecution was happening, how did this shape his view of government, religion, and God? My research has told me a lot of stuff about this character I hadn’t know before, and will help in deciding what actions he will take during the part of his story that’s shown on screen.

As always, a lot of my theatre training helps in working on characters. Later today, I’m going to be giving my theatre students an exercise in character development, which anyone can use for their own work. The assignment is: where were you right before the play starts? By figuring out why they are where they are, will help in bringing realistic performances.

Have a good day you all!

Saturday, February 13, 2010

People Never Change (LOST 6x3 What Kate Does)

While circumstances may be different, character traits never really change. A Human is divided into 3 parts, the body, the spirit, and the soul. Body is physical, and spirit is, well, spiritual. Those two can change, but the inner soul of a character, their distinctive traits and personality, usually doesn’t differ.

Here’s my LOST episode recap for 6x3 “What Kate Does”.

Ripples in a Pond (LOST 6x1 and 2 – LA X)

All choices in life affect everyone else, even if you don’t realize it. Since stories reflect life, a way to put together a compelling narrative is to show how one character’s actions affect the rest of their world. An example would be how anything Superman does affects the rest of the world; because if he didn’t do what he does, the world would, well, be destroyed.

This theme of the ripple effect (everything affects everything else) is evident in the season premiere of LOST.

My review of character growth in episodes 6x1 and 6x2 - LA X after the jump. (spoilers)

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

The Story God Factor: Creating Characters

What is the most important aspect of storytelling? In my opinion, it’s characters, because that’s how it works in real life too. Life can have pretty much anything happen in it, same with stories, but, the things people really care about and respond to are other people.

Characters can determine the course of action in a story by how they relate to what’s going on around them. If you write a story based on plot, and force your characters to do things to get to a certain predetermined destination of your choice, the characterization will probably fall flat, and your audience won’t care about your characters because they can’t view them as real human beings.

So how can you create characters that choose their own path in life, yet still have them arrive at the point necessary for your story? I call this the “God” factor. (And this is not meant in a weird spiritual way at all, it simply means you are the creator of, and in control of, your story.)

In a sense, you are God of your story. You create the characters, and give them life and personality, and you also create the world you’re going to put them in. Now, what you can do, is either tell them exactly what to do, or, let them make a choice based on the information you allow them to have. That’ where the story starts. A good part of storytelling is creating characters, then letting their personality and opinions decide what they are going to do next in the situations you’ve placed them in.
You may know what’s best for your characters, but, as in real life, will your characters listen to you, or decide to try things their own way? As with Adam and Eve, even if you put them in a perfect environment, they may choose a destructive path.

If you think of characters in that sense, you will (In a God role) also know what triggers them, or what shuts them down. Then, you can give them situations that will either grow and better them, or send them on a downward spiral (depending on the needs of your story.) The most important thing to do as your writing is get to know your characters.

A way to get to know your characters is, through improvisation. An exercise I give my theatre students is to be able to answer 20 questions about their character that have nothing to do with the script. To do so, they have to create their own back story and personality traits, that aren’t revealed in the information I give them. The reason I have them do this is so they can 1, give the best performance they can, and 2, know how to deal with any situation that may happen during the performance, that wasn’t pre scripted or rehearsed. (Mac’s rule number two, anything that could go wrong probably will, so better be prepared!)

A form of this in writing is to sit down, and think of a random thing that could happen. For example: Character A, is shopping in the grocery store, when a monkey shows up and starts throwing watermelons at them. What in the world would they do? Make sure it is something true to what they would do, and not, what you personally would do. (for a bunch of excersise starters, see this post.

Short notes version: let your characters make their own decisions, and your story will take off in new ways and you may find plot points you had never thought of before. :)



Coming soon, I’m going to be analyzing the current (6th) season of the TV show LOST from a character perspective, and how the creators allow the characters free will while still movie them towards a preset goal.

What are your opinions of letting characters run your story?

Random character improvisation starting points.

For a performing or writing improvisational exercise, take your character and put them in one or more of the following situations, to see how they will react.



1. Character is at the movie theatre. What movie would they watch?

2. Character is at a convenience store, when a masked man comes in with a gun and demands they hand over all the money in the cash box.

3. Character just won the lottery.

4. Character is at the car dealership. What sort of car would they buy?

5. Character’s beloved pet just died. What do they do?

6. Character is going to vote for president. What candidate?

7. What is character’s favorite color?

8. What is character’s favorite childhood memory.

9. Character’s relative just died. How do they respond?

10. Character just got arrested for shoplifting. Why did they steal, or was it a mistake?



Add more in the comments!

Current Status

This is a short post to let you know my upcoming plans before i post the first part of my next blog series.

First of all, I am currently on a actual film making hiatus. Reason, I need a better microphone. We all know camcorder sound is... well, shouldn't be considered sound. Also, I have a tendency to only be able to write shorts I can actually film at the moment starring my brothers. Though I love my bros, it's really time to venture to a different age group. ;)

Also, taking this break to really focus more on writing. One of the reasons I figured out I am unsuccessful in getting my film projects done, is because I am never sure what to work on at a given moment. I have several projects that need finishing!

So I'm limiting my concentration to strictly the following. (until my A.D.D. kicks in, of course. ;) ) Pinocchio for theatre, one feature film script to work on (a modern day version of Paul the Apostle), and writing both analysis posts and political posts.

Hopefully, I'll be able to get that new mic soon, and be able to film some decent material. ;) Till then, please enjoy my writing!

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

And action!

My order of more Mini DV tapes came yesterday! I am planning to film the rest of the PSA this friday.

Before then though, new year, new theatre semester! Pinocchio is going to get underway, and each of my students will be given a riddle they must give an answer for (in character) before the play is over.

The riddle is: "If Pinocchio says his nose will grow, what will happen?"

The problem for those un-mathematically minded: Pinocchio's nose grows when he lies, but if he says his nose will grow, is he lying? But if it grows.. was he telling the truth?

Got a guess? Leave it as a comment!

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Hello from Georgia!

So, on that film I was trying to do. I did get a scene filmed, but unfortunately, didn't have enough time or tape to finish it.

The film is a PSA about not wasting time, which is appropriate since that's what I've been trying to beat latey. ;)

The mistake I made though, in tyring to do it fast, was actor prep.When you only have an hour to film, and are dealing with children, they don't work that fast. So I made the decision to film when I get back and theere's more time.

So, when I get back, it's filming time!