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Think Virtue!





Updated: 2016-10-09T09:15:51.317-04:00

 



Wild Passion

2010-07-11T05:50:44.680-04:00

I've been focusing on entertainment a lot these days. It's been good and I've encountered all kinds of coolness along the way. I'm thankful for that. I haven't abandoned my faith and social justice interests, I'm still passionate about those but there are seasons when you have to tend one field more than another. And it's not like you can separate the passions of your life anyway, they all kind blend in together making you who you are. And I'm happy with who I am. The road hasn't been perfect but I've been blessed in countless regards.

I'll just share a few things that have inspired me lately...
  • California sunshine.
  • Olivia Wilde's website (she chats of vegetarianism and activism, two of my favorite subjects).
  • Twilight Sleep (they're a super neat band and I listen to their music quite often).
  • Nachos. They're always fun to eat.
  • Sunsets. I still make the effort to enjoy as many as I can.
  • Kit-Kat candy bars. 
  • Good conversations and smiles.
I'm glad to be alive and to be able to experience so many awesome things, some planned and some completely unexpected.



On the Red Carpet: Oscars 2010

2010-03-27T05:59:10.190-04:00

This was pretty cool...
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Remember to check out www.ReelArtsy.com 



American Indian Heritage Month

2009-11-22T05:05:40.615-05:00

It's that time of the year again. Make sure to add some Native American movies to your Netflix queue. Not sure what to watch? Then head over to my film site ReelArtsy.com and browse through the Native American category.

Here's the trailer for Tkaronto:

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And if you haven't seen Smoke Signals yet then what are you waiting for???

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You'd be the deepest of blues...

2009-07-21T05:29:48.107-04:00

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"If I could call you a color, You'd be the deepest of blues." - Jaci Velasquez




"When Life Don't Seem Worth Living..."

2009-06-27T03:46:39.071-04:00

I really like this song:

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Mindy's voice is soul-stirringly beautiful and the lyrics are simple but poignant.

To listen to more of her music visit myspace.com/mindysmith

[H/T Crissy]



Remember the Light

2009-05-25T03:36:01.518-04:00

So many times I want to pull the car over, to stop and watch the sunset pass, but I don't. Errands to run. Places to be. Things to do. You know the drill. But this one day I drove into a shopping center parking lot with the sole intent of enjoying a few minutes of the sun before it went away.

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When's the last time you got out of your car to savor a sunset?




Fireflight Concert

2009-04-20T13:40:50.941-04:00

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I had an awesome time at the Fireflight concert over the weekend. I've been wanting to see them for a long, long time and it finally happened. Of course Fireflight rocked hard, lots of head banging on their part and mine. Pillar was the headline band and they had some major rock action going on too.

Below is a short montage of some footage I got at the concert, I overlaid the music track with their song "Unbreakable."

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And here's a couple pics from after the show:

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(with Pillar)


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(with Fireflight)


Definitely one of my favorite concerts!

[Hat tip Kev for taking the photos]




Expect Nothing In Return

2009-04-03T02:50:49.052-04:00

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I just read this blog post at Get Togetha and it was so awesome I had to share...

There are only two emotions: love and fear. When we we give based on strings it is a subtle form of manipulation. Manipulation is fear. When we give through a tiny yet powerful act called love we understand that what we give to others we give to ourselves whether its reciprocated or not. When we give from love the good things overflow in abundance.

49 Second Solution: We all slip up when it comes to the “what’s in it for me?’ syndrome. Recognize when you are giving from a place of love and a when you are giving from place of fear. Give selflessly and expect nothing in return. Yup. It’s that simple. But only practice makes perfect.

Please visit the original post to read the full article. It's totally worth it!

[Hat tip Rest of Yesterday]




Sunset Hill

2009-03-30T00:30:54.665-04:00

One of my favorite places to watch sunsets at...

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When I walk up this hill I feel a little closer to God, in a tangible sort of way.




Don't Close Your Eyes...

2009-03-18T01:45:27.051-04:00

Make time to enjoy art that has no borders.

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I like how all the blues filled the sky that evening.


[Music: "This is Your Life" by Switchfoot]




Late Sunset

2009-03-03T00:58:17.127-05:00

Here's a video I made that captures a small glimpse of the beauty a late sunset gushes. I'll be doing more of these.

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"Sunsets are God's smoothies to the world." -Me

[Music: "First Breath After Coma" by Explosions in the Sky]




Satisfied...

2009-02-03T05:23:51.214-05:00

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I was just thinking about how satisfied I am with my overall concert experiences. I've been able to see some of my favorite bands and singers use their God-given talents on stage which are little (and big) dreams come true. And those moments are magical, when songs connect to your heart in ways only music can.

I remember how Jennifer Knapp cradled her guitar in her arms as she sang "A Little More" in her quiet but captivating storytelling voice.

I remember seeing Switchfoot twice. Once front and center at the House of Blues. Then again at a bigger venue after they had their breakout album The Beautiful Letdown.

I remember being in a mosh pit at a P.O.D. concert and standing next to some guy dressed in all black wearing a baseball cap with metal spikes on it (which I eventually moved away from because it was an accident waiting to happen).

I remember sitting so far away from LeAnn Rimes that I couldn't see her as I camped along the Charles River waiting for the 4th of July fireworks to start.

I remember dancing next to my sister at a Stacie Orrico concert and walking away feeling like I had the time of my life.

I remember holding back tears and being overwhelmed with a deep thanksgiving toward God as Fred Hammond sang soul-stirring Gospel tunes.

I remember jumping up and down to the punk rock sounds of Relient K.

I remember riding in the car with a friend for 40 minutes, waiting in line for another 40 to only end up catching the last song of Lights (and that last song was pretty amazing).

I remember feeling completely electrified to finally, FINALLY, see Superchic[k] play after two previous attempts where something always seemed to suddenly pop up just before the show.

Those memories are irreplaceable.

Because our lives do come with soundtracks whether we realize it or not. Sometimes music comes with bright lights and sometimes it comes from a tiny speaker in the sanctuary of our homes. Whatever the case, music is beautiful and it gives us reasons to smile, to gather and to enjoy each other's company as we journey through this existence called life.



President Obama

2009-01-20T15:03:20.082-05:00

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Now I know what it feels like to be part of a historic moment in time. Countless people throughout the years put their blood, sweat and tears on the line so that this kind of event could be possible.

And as Jesus would put it:
"That's the truth of the saying, 'This one sows, that one harvests.' I sent you to harvest a field you never worked. Without lifting a finger, you have walked in on a field worked long and hard by others." (John 4:36-38, The Message Bible)

May God bless America and the world! Be sure to pause and savor the beauty of today.

***



6 Little Known Things About Me…

2009-01-19T12:29:40.105-05:00

I was tagged by Tiffany at Mulatto Diaries and Martine at Artsy Wings for this meme. Feel free to join in the fun and share six little know things about yourself.

1. I collect calendars, ones that feature different countries and lighthouses.
2. I'm fascinated by wolves. They're such intriguing creatures.
3. I've reread my favorite book (Redeeming Love) over 10 times. It's seriously that amazing!
4. I prefer mugs over glasses.
5. I've played the viola since the 5th grade. It's kinda like the violin, only better.
6. Watching The City on MTV has become a guilty pleasure.



Work at it...

2008-12-19T04:51:02.195-05:00

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There are certain scriptures that light up in my mind like fireworks.

I think this will be my theme for the New Year:

2 Timothy 4:5 says:

"But you should keep a clear mind in every situation. Don’t be afraid of suffering for the Lord. Work at telling others the Good News, and fully carry out the ministry God has given you." (New Living Translation)

The Message Version puts it this way:

"But you—keep your eye on what you're doing; accept the hard times along with the good; keep the Message alive; do a thorough job as God's servant."

It's a simple way of summing up what we as Christians are supposed to do.

1. Share the story of Jesus.
2. Share how Jesus' story transformed our lives (it's okay to share our flaws as well, we're only human and our frailty helps other people connect to us).
3. Live a life of purpose, doing the tasks (career, family, friendships) that only you can fulfill.

For me writing is an important part of my life so I've been working hard on my screenplay. By this time next year I believe that will be in some stage of production. I really feel like my creativity is part of my ministry.

And this will be my unofficial theme song...

"Push It To The Limit" by Corbin Bleu.

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The lyrics to that song always kind of rev me up.

And Mary Mary's "Get Up" is pretty inspiring too.

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How are you aspiring to engage life in the New Year? And what has been helpful in your process of becoming the best human being only you can be?

***



Front of the Class

2008-12-15T05:58:25.456-05:00

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Great film! Front of the Class is an inspiring story about a boy with Tourette syndrome who battles discrimination to realize his dream of becoming a grade school teacher. If you enjoy Hallmark Hall of Fame movies then you'll be delighted by this one. Front of the Class really knows how to pull your heart strings. And what's even more inspirational is that it's based on a true story. It stars Patricia Heaton (Everybody Loves Raymond) and James Wolk (who seriously looks like he could be Kyle Chandler's little brother).

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Prayers for Mumbai

2008-12-05T01:08:41.125-05:00

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Just wanted to say that Mumbai is in my thoughts. For such a tragedy to strike the center of Bollywood is quite saddening. India is an amazing country full of intriguing sights and people. Also, pray for the Christians over there because some still face persecution.



Native American Heritage Month

2008-11-25T17:42:40.267-05:00

(image) This is the month where our country is supposed to take the time to spotlight and celebrate the accomplishments and contributions of those indigenous to our land.

November is the national Native American Indian & Alaska Native Heritage Month. But why am I just learning about this?

And where's the coverage in the news?

I feel embarrassed and saddened when I think about how little our country pays attention to Native Americans. The only time I can remember seeing a news story centered on a Native issue was when CNN did a short piece interviewing Alaskan Natives on what they thought about Gov. Sarah Palin.

I mean, come on, one story a year is completely subpar.

I wish that there was some magical solution to make things right in this country but easy answers are hard to find. So what are your thoughts on the issue? Do you think things are fine as they are? If not, what kind of change would you like to see happen?

Lastly, here are some cool links to check out:



Nicholas Sparks Writing Film for Miley Cyrus

2008-11-19T04:38:36.123-05:00

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According to Variety.com:

"Nicholas Sparks is writing a new novel and an accompanying screenplay that is being custom-fit as a star vehicle for Miley Cyrus at Disney."

I wasn't expecting this collaboration but it makes sense. Miley has a huge teen fan base and Sparks knows how to make teen girls cry i.e. A Walk to Remember and The Notebook. We all know the story is going to be inspirational and bittersweet. And that's a good thing.



Jared Padalecki as Thomas Kinkade

2008-11-17T16:54:23.879-05:00

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Jared Padalecki in a Christmas movie is a gift all by itself. I'll definitely be buying The Christmas Cottage on DVD.

Thomas Kinkade is one of my favorite artists, I'm a big fan of impressionism and he's a true example of how Christians can aspire for excellence in their creative endeavors.

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The film is about "how the Kinkade was motivated to begin his career after discovering his mother was in danger of losing their family home" (IMDB).

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The Good-o-Meter

2008-11-13T03:12:47.961-05:00

If there is any beauty in this world, it comes from God.

James 1:17 says...

"Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights."
(NIV)

"Every desirable and beneficial gift comes out of heaven. The gifts are rivers of light cascading down from the Father of Light."
(The Message)

"Whatever is good and perfect comes down to us from God our Father, who created all the lights in the heavens."
(NLT)

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[Hat tip to Heather]

***



Kristi Yamaguchi Friends & Family

2008-11-12T03:16:43.565-05:00

(image) I've enjoyed watching professional figure skating since I was little girl.

It's graceful, poetic and every time they land their jumps I get the tingles. Sure, figure skating can be a little cheesy at times but that adds to its charm. Plus, anyone who can do a triple salcow deserves respect.

This year the Kristi Yamaguchi Friends & Family special featured live performances by the Jonas Brothers and Demi Lovato. It's amazing how seamless teeny-bopper music and ice skating blend together. It's like caramel apples, sugary sweet. To top off all the cuteness you get to watch skating legends share the ice with their kids. It's adorable. Nancy Kerrigan and Yamaguchi are my long time favorites and it's always cool to see them share the rink together.

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[Photos via MomsLikeMe.com]



Obama Won! And what it means...

2008-11-05T20:40:36.552-05:00

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The United States of America is going to have its first black president come January 2009 and that's pretty cool. Actually, it's awesome!

When CNN declared Obama as the winner, I had this surreal feeling. Was this really happening? And in my lifetime? There are no words to describe the rush of emotion that came over me. I didn't cry but I did a lot of smiling. I smiled as I listened to Roland Martin talk about how he felt honored to be one of the newscasters on such a historic night. I smiled as I watched people in Africa cheer for Obama. I smiled as Michelle Obama and her two little girls walked onto the stage. And I smiled as I texted my friends and family, sharing the good news with them.

So what does Obama's win mean to you?



Dreams from His Grandmother

2008-11-03T18:32:00.369-05:00

(image) Senator Obama's grandmother passed away before she could see if he would be the next president of the the United States of America. I can only imagine how proud she must have been of him.

I've been pondering all day who I should vote for. Even though I'm leaning toward Obama, I'm still unsure. I consider myself an independent. I don't have an allegiance to any political party, I simply consider the options and vote for the best person. So who is the best person for our country? Who should our leader be? There are things about all the candidates that make me uneasy (yes, there are more than two). And it's always been that way when it comes to politicians. It's hard to decipher who's really telling the truth.

What I do know is that if Obama wins, a part of me will be happy, ecstatic even. The world will see us differently and I will see my country differently. A piece of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s dream will have came true.

I also know that our struggle is not against Republican or Democrat but against "the forces and powers of a dark world." We see that darkness everyday in the images that flash across our TV screen of children going to bed without food, of women being sold into sex trafficking, of children being kidnapped and people being murdered.

When it all comes down to it my vote is for love. My vote is goodness and kindness. My vote is for faith and hope. My vote is for art and creativity that inspires us to reach for more, to be more and to give more.

This world is not my eternal home even though I've lived here for 25 years. There are a million things I love about this planet like sunsets, beaches, hot cocoa and great conversations. But there's more to life than what the eyes can see and what the fingers can touch. The USA is a great country and I support its efforts to offer people a fair place to live and carve out their niche.

I get all my dreams about the goodness of humanity from my Heavenly Father. And whoever you chose to vote for, think about Jesus and how he did things that went against popular opinion, against the religious people who thought they knew it all. He understood that there was more to life than what's written on money and who's in office. All people mattered to him. They still do.



Natalie Portman and Rashida Jones PSA

2008-10-27T16:58:52.788-04:00

Because Natalie Portman and Rashida Jones are two of my favorite actresses I had to post this...

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See more Natalie Portman videos at Funny or Die


Hopefully they star in movie together. Something artsy.

***