Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Fun Photos From Winter Break Thus Far... A Glimpse into the Life of the Modern Bohemian

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Avatar is Amazing

I am always moved by inspirational and life changing stories told through a creative medium; whether told through song ("True Believer," by E-Type, "Imagine," by John Lennon), written word ("Ishmael," by Daniel Quinn, "The Way to God," a collection of Gandhi's writings, "Tao Te Ching," by Lao Tzu), theatre ("Rent," by Jonathan Larson, "La Boheme," by Giacomo Puccini) or through cinematic adventures ("Moulin Rouge," "Interstella 5555," "Koyaanisqatsi"), I am moved.. Tonight, I was moved because I experienced an inspirational and life changing movie: Avatar.

Avatar moved me.  Avatar inspired me.  Avatar changed my life.  And Avatar entertained me.  I was so invested in this movie that I literally forgot I was in a movie theater at all!  I smiled.  I cried.  I stared at the screen without blinking for long stretches, and I was in it.  I was there. In a moment of intense destruction and devastation during the course of the story, as the tears welled up in my eyes, all I could think was "How could you do this horrific thing to these beautiful people?"  I felt their pain.  I suffered with them.

And I know that these people are fictitious.  I know that Avatar is a movie, and Pandora, the planet in it, doesn't really exist.  But there are people in this world, on this Earth, who resemble in my heart and mind the people I so connected with in Avatar.  There are events in our history that Avatar mirrors during the course of the film, that I fear we will repeat again someday.  There are feelings brought out in me because of the deep, moving story of this movie that cannot be denied as feelings I have for the Earth and its creatures and other life.  So even though Avatar isn't real... it's a movie that "talks" about very real things.  It's a unique movie; different than anything else out there... and it offers more wisdom, inspiration, and enlightenment than one would think a movie could.

Avatar does have similarities to movies of the past (I thought Pocahontas and Fern Gully right away...) but that doesn't mean that it isn't special.  It is special.  It's magic.  It's very well made.  And it is a movie that has enough originality to stand out amongst all the movies I have ever seen in my 25 years of life thus far.

It can't beat out Moulin Rouge as my favorite movie ever, but I will say this: It is an important movie.  I think everyone should see it, with open mind and open heart.

I'm not the only one.  Check out this enthusiastic gush, I mean... review of Avatar.

Believe me, I am sure that he and I are not the only two so inspired by this amazing movie.  Even if not everyone is moved as I was, I am sure that most everyone who sees Avatar can at least be impressed by the special effects and the acting.  My favorite?  Zoe Saldana, who has been on my radar since I first saw her in Center Stage.  She plays Neytiri, one of the Na'vi on Pandora where the movie takes place, so basically, she never looks like Zoe Saldana, human being, during any of this movie.  So her job, in my opinion, was much harder than some others in the film, because she had to express every tiny emotion through her voice.  And she did.  It was incredible.

What more can I say about this movie?  I guess... just watch it.  Watch it, with an open mind and an open heart and with open eyes and ears.  See if you agree with me or not.  But no matter what anyone else thinks, this movie was magical and moving to me and it stirred feelings inside me that I feel are going to bring a change into my life.  And I am so grateful that James Cameron made this movie. It is amazing.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Happy Holidays From PonchoMeg: The Modern Bohemian

Glitter Graphics

Happy Holidays Glitter Pictures

Christmas (the Holiday I happen to celebrate) is coming up fast!  It's strange how Christmastime somehow feels different than any other time of the year.  Not just because of the mad rush of capitalism everywhere, but for some other reason...
We seem to appreciate one another more at Christmastime... I wonder why that is...
A friend of mine died, and many people lamented and complained, saying how awful it was that he died so close to Christmas... as if the passing of a beloved member of our life is any easier around, say... Independence Day?
But there is a difference... and that may not be entirely bad.
I mean, if there is something that comes around every year to remind us to appreciate loved ones, enjoy the gift of giving, and eat, drink, and be merry, then, well... I say we should be glad for the change in spirit, pros and cons included, because that change in spirit brings a lot of magic too.
And Jesus plays a huge role here (obviously), but for more reasons than just being born.  Jesus was a smart guy.  His whole life was spent promoting peace, love, understanding, and changing for the betterment of all humankind.  How easily some of us forget these things throughout the year.  But when Christmas roles around, how can you NOT be reminded of Jesus, his many good deeds, and his impact on the world?
Now I know that there are people out there saying "What's with all this preachy stuff?  I'm not a Christian... I'm in the counterculture!  So are you!  Why are you talking like this?"  But to me... Christian or not (which I am not, as I cannot fully commit to any form of organized religion... it may be the organized part that's a problem... but I digress...)  What was I saying?  Oh yes, Christian or not, you have to admit that Jesus was promoting some pretty radical, groovy ideas back in his day.  He showed a lot of intelligence, compassion, empathy, strength, love, understanding, and determination.  Why shouldn't we celebrate such a man and allow him to help others to change in spirit for the better, even if only once a year?
But... I mean... I don't know everything, and I would never go as far to say that everyone should celebrate what I celebrate... but please, whatever you celebrate, use this Holiday season, the rest of the year, and the rest of your life, to do some of the magical things that this time of year promotes, such as:
Helping others
Loving your loved ones
Appreciating all of life's gifts
And trying to be better every day.
Happy Holidays Everyone.
Peace and Love,

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

What Tarot Card Are You?

You are The Star

Hope, expectation, Bright promises.
The Star is one of the great cards of faith, dreams realised
The Star is a card that looks to the future. It does not predict any immediate or powerful change, but it does predict hope and healing. This card suggests clarity of vision, spiritual insight. And, most importantly, that unexpected help will be coming, with water to quench your thirst, with a guiding light to the future. They might say you're a dreamer, but you're not the only one.
What Tarot Card are You?
Take the Test to Find Out.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Sorry... Here's Something a Little Less Serious

I made this cute and delicious dessert with a bunch of random ingredients in our kitchen that we had left over from making rice crispie treats and puppy chow. I'm proud of myself for making it. I am proud of my creativity, especially in the fact that I molded this tasty treat in muffin cups, in a muffin tin, and then froze them too. haha Anyway, I thought I would show one to you, in hopes that you might leave a comment that mentions Top Chef. ;)

Peace and Love,

This is NOT a good sign of the times...

"The BoarsHead Theater is canceling the remainder of its 2009-10 performance season because it has run out of money.

The professional theater in Lansing had shut down last month in a bid to save $77,000 between early November and late January. It had planned to reopen early next year with a performance in January, but expected gifts from corporate donors failed to materialize." Read more at The Lansing State Journal Online
This is bad news friends...
If our economic situation doesn't improve soon, we are going to have some serious losses to deal with. The first thing that usually goes, especially when it comes to government funding and donations...are the fine arts. As a music teacher, this troubles me greatly because fine arts do so much to enhance lives, share ideas, change viewpoints, challenge authority, educate, inspire, and entertain. To lose them is to lose a part of ourselves that cannot be replaced with anything else.
As if this weren't bad enough...
Michigan public schools are being forced to make drastic changes in order to survive. (Budget cuts, layoffs, etc.)  And Universities are dropping entire programs! If there is one thing we need to keep funded it's schools, and yet with everything being so bad, schools are not getting what they need. This means that children are not getting the education that they need... and deserve.
Even worse...
"LANSING - The projections for 2010 are in and the funds needed to feed hungry people in the seven county mid-Michigan area are staggering. To continue to serve seniors, families and children the Mid-Michigan Food Bank needs to raise $2.8 million dollars. Up to 18,000 families, including a large number of children and seniors, will be turned away due to lack of food. The demand for food is such that the supplies at the Mid-Michigan Food Bank are depleted every 10 days." Read more at The Lansing State Journal Online
It just makes me wonder. Where are our priorities? We're worried about savings accounts and not being able to buy as many Christmas gifts this year (which are legitimate concerns, of course) but what's worse? Paying a bill late or having to shut down a school? Getting a gift card for your spouse instead of a new HDTV or knowing that 18,000 families will not have food this winter?
All I ask is this... since this is a season of giving, look around your community and see what you can do to help. Every little bit does something! Some ideas:
Donate canned goods to your local food bank
Make a monetary donation to a local fine arts organization
Send your child to school with extra supplies to donate to the classroom. (Pencils, pens, paper, tissue, hand sanitizer, etc.)
And open your mind and heart, and help those around you. If we all give a little, we all gain a lot more.
Peace and Love,
Meagan (PonchoMeg: The Modern Bohemian)

Friday, December 11, 2009

PonchoMeg: The Modern Bohemian Gives You Some Stuff to Check out on a Friday Afternoon

I love exploring the internet and all it has to offer. So here, on this chilly Friday afternoon, I am sitting inside, cozy and warm after some early morning Christmas shopping, sharing some of the fun things I have been checkin' out online.

I LOVED this song on Make Me a Supermodel Season 2 and I just can't get enough of it. It is such a sick jam!!!

This video makes me giggle so much! And I literally mean giggle, like a three year old being tickled. It's pretty cute, that's all I'm saying.

If you believe in the powers of crystals, check out this site. I don't know how I feel about it, but I always like to learn more about things.

Another new site for me. It belongs to an ehow member, so I thought I would check it out. It seems really interesting and right up my alley. :) I will have to look it over a little more and see what I think.

Friend and fellow blogger Terria Fleming puts out this amazing site that offers up ways for us to do good for the world everyday. I love it!


Peace and Love,
PonchoMeg: The Modern Bohemian

Friday, December 4, 2009

More Great Ideas for the Holiday Season

Looking for some ways to make this holiday extra special? Well, I have some ideas for you. First of all, if you are a crafty person, start making some great holiday crafts for you and your family and friends! It feels great to do something crafty and it feels even better when you give things away! I made some centerpieces, decorations, a wreath, and a fun holiday scarf.

If you need an idea, check out this FREE pattern from Artbeads.com. And hey, while you're there, do something for yourself too. Click here to enter a contest from Artbeads.com where you can win a $100.00 gift card!

Secondly, even if you are not crafty, you can still make someone's day. In fact, you can make a soldier's day by getting involved with Holiday Mail for Heroes through the American Red Cross.

"In this season of hope and giving the American Red Cross and Pitney Bowes, Inc. have joined forces to invite Americans to send a touch of home to United States service members and veterans across the country and abroad. In its third year, the Holiday Mail for Heroes program is an opportunity to share joy and thanks with our service members throughout the holiday season by way of a greeting card.
Today over 1.4 million men and women serve in the U.S. armed forces and over 24 million veterans have served in the past. The holiday season is the perfect time to honor and extend a warm holiday greeting to those who’ve served and continue to do so." -American Red Cross
Also, if you want to keep giving for FREE, you can head over to the Animal Rescue Site. Literally, all you have to do is click a button, and you are helping animals. You can do this every day! If you don't want to bookmark it, I have a button on my blog 24/7 that is available for you. Please, take a moment and do this.
If you still want to do even more for animals this holiday season, then donate to the ASPCA, The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals. I adopted my cat, Ava from a local division of the ASPCA back when I lived near Kalamazoo, and I am so grateful for their work. Ava is like my baby, my friend, and my little angel all rolled into one. So please help the ASPCA. If you don't want to just donate money, buy some fun animal themed items from their store. They have some really cute stuff.

Back to my crafty friends... there is a great group called Warm Up America that helps you to help provide warm afghans to those in need.

You can make a difference to someone in need by:
  • crocheting or knitting one or more 7" by 9" sections for Warm Up America!
  • joining sections into completed afghans,
  • donating yarns and needles/hooks to groups in your community,
  • contributing money to expand WUA! to groups nationwide.

If you do want to simply donate money, you can always donate to Feeding America.
"Feeding America is the nation's leading domestic hunger-relief charity. Our mission is to feed America's hungry through a nationwide network of member food banks and engage our country in the fight to end hunger." -From ABOUT US, at FeedingAmerica.org

Or... maybe... you just want something for you! That's okay too! Get some! 

And check out some of the following links:

Peace and Love,
PonchoMeg: The Modern Bohemian