Words

Hello friends! Random Specific Thoughts is officially back from hiatus and I’m so excited to catch up on posting and reading! Today’s poem on ‘Words’ is part of a blog tour hosted by a dear friend, Kaley Kriesel to celebrate the launch of her official writing blog, Words. As we’re both in awe of words, […]

Dear Mr. Pink Monk,

hello hello hello!

Hello everyone! Mr. Pink Monk here, from a room drenched in the day’s first rays, to share with you all a wonderfully pleasant surprise I had today – a letter! An actual handwritten letter from none other than my new friend – Waffle Pecan! He’s also a part of Build A Bears Furever, the best stuffie blog there is! I can’t wait to read what he’s got to say!

Dear Mr. Pink Monk,

Hello! I hope you are doing well. I believe we arrived at our respective owner’s houses around the same time, so I thought it might be fun to be pen pals! 

Allow me to introduce myself. My name is Waffle Pecan. I live with my parents, and my younger brother Theo. I love him dearly, but he can be a bother. I love baking, talking to friends, and teaching others. Tell me a bit about yourself!

I’m going to tell you some about my day. Firstly, I had some errands to run, so I drove to the store. Er, well, my mom drove to the store. I’m only 10! It was fun to pretend to drive though.

We went to the bookstore first. I found this fun Disney themed book that I’m excited about, though I haven’t started to read it yet. Reading is a fun hobby, don’t you think?

Here’s my favorite part – grocery shopping! I love perusing the aisles of fresh produce and meats. Like I mentioned earlier, I like cooking. Along with that I have a love of food. Yummy! Okay, now I’m hungry! Tonight I’m going to cook a ham casserole. Delish. Do you like to cook? I bet you like banana bread.

My least favorite part of shopping, wearing masks. They aren’t very fun to wear. But oh well, I suppose this is our reality for a while.

Whew, after shopping Mom treated me to a drink from Sonic!

Look at how big the drink is compared to me! It was huge. I loved every sip though.

Now that I’ve told you a little about me, I’m so excited to learn about you! So tell me Mr. Pink Monk, what makes you you?

Your friend,
Waffle Pecan


Click here to read my response to Waffle’s lovely letter!

D here; this was a collaboration with Diamond @ Build A Bears Furever who recently celebrated her fourth blogiversary! I was so glad when my stuffie friend (Pink Monk) received a letter from her stuffie, Waffle!
She’s an amazing friend and artist who has a wonderful, homely blog where she chronicles the lives of her bears along with writing fascinating features like photostories and superhero stories!

Source: Build A Bears Furever
Hehe, I drew her a unicorn!

And just popping in real quick to let you all know that Maggie (@maggie’s doodles) celebrated her birthday yesterday! She’s one of my closest friends here and a few of us got together to plan a doodle-y surprise for her where we each drew her a doodle of our own, which Evin very kindly compiled into a post here! Make sure you head over here to wish her a very happy birthday!

Thoughtfully yours,
Introverted Thoughts aka D and Mr. Pink Monk

“What dreams do you dream?” ft. Huckleberry

“Until one has loved an animal, a part of one’s soul remains unawakened.”
― Anatole France

( D here! This is a Q&A with a very special guest hosted by yet another new face, someone I absolutely love and trust! Kudos to Evin for suggesting this idea! Today, my pet dog, Willy is going to be interviewing Anna’s pet kitty, Huckleberry! Similar pet collaborations are on the way; keep an eye out on Diamond’s, Lizzie’s, Shanessa’s and Evin’s blogs to meet all of our trusty four-legged friends!

Without further ado, I’m going to retreat to my place as a translator for all the doggy and kitty talk!)

(All photos of Huckleberry were kindly provided by his human, Anna!)

hello!

Huckleberry!! I’m so excited to meet you! Did you know that I love cats? Why don’t you tell us a bit about yourself and your person?

Ayyyy Willy! Nice to meat you! (Definitely didn’t spell it like that on purpose) Wait, you LIKE cats? Well that’s good, although I can’t say I particularly like dogs…. I’ve been scared by them too many times!

But purrhaps if you don’t get too close, I will like you just fine!  Umm a little bit about myself? Hmm.. well, I am 1 year and 2 months old, and I am a super adorable orange and white cat… In my spare time I love to bite my person, and jump at her and cling to her legs and make her scream😼 I also love to go crazy around the house chasing hairbands and random items.

My human is kinda boring…. She won’t let me be on the counters or chew on things, she makes me stay outside when I’m hyper, and she doesn’t give me enough treats….. That’s pretty much all I know about her.

Hehe, I’m older than you are! What do you do in a typical day? Do cats really sleep 12-16 hours per day?

Well, first thing in the morning, I’ll wake everyone in the house by meowing at the top of my lungs, trying to get someone to let me out of my human’s room…. Then once someone lets me out, I’ll whine until someone feeds me.😼

Then one of my human’s parents will toss me outside and I’ll go chase birds and squirrels for an hour or so. After that, I’ll go to sleep for awhile, and in between naps I’ll tease my human’s other cat (her name is Peeka, and she’s OLD)……erm, well….I guess you’re right about the fact that cats sleep for that long during the day👀 Except my human wakes me up a lot, so sometimes I get less.

That’s still a lot of sleep. I’m curious, what dreams do you dream?

Oh, I dream lots of dreams…. Most of them involve me chasing mice or squirrels up skyscrapers in big cities, although I often have horrible nightmares of ENORMOUS dogs chasing me up trees… And then the dogs climb up the trees with me, even though in the real world, they can’t do that!  Those dreams scare me so much that I’ll get up and snuggle next to my human so that she’ll keep me safe.

What’s your favourite outdoor activity? I do love a good adventure in my backyard! You’d be amazed at how many creatures stop by there on an average day!

Ooooh, I’d have to say my favourite outdoor activity is stalking the birds by our front porch…. That and rolling around in the dirt, making all my white fur look brown. 😼

What do you do when your human doesn’t understand what you’re trying to say? This happens to me all the time; the elder humans at home come to my rescue when my human can’t sense anything through her human eyes.

I usually meow and whine very loudly when she doesn’t understand me….. it doesn’t really help her to understand me, but at least I can express my frustration.

Do you wish you and your human had telepathy? I do.

Definitely! That would make my life so much easier!

Ooh, have you ever travelled in a car? My family takes me for all the long trips and I get to sleep the whole way and it’s a bonus to get pampered for consecutive days! Now, why would I complain!

The only times I’ve ever been in the car is to see the vet, and so being in the car is a living nightmare to me….. I usually complain very loudly, hoping that they’ll change their minds and not take me to the vet, but it never works….

If you could speak the humans’ language, what’s the first thing you’d say?

I would probably say “Don’t touch me!” When my human’s sister tries to pick me up, orrrr “Let me out!!!” When nobody will let me out of my human’s room.

Who is/are your best friend(s)? I love everyone in my family! The cats are a bit weird (no offense) but they’re mildly interesting to watch!

My best friend is my human, and my human’s mother…. I don’t like the other cat (that’s ancient) very much…. She’s mean to me.

If the human world’s leaders decide to set up a Cat Parliament, what would you want to be? Any laws you’d want to introduce? I’d want to open schools with dog instructors (with free snacks and toys!)!

I would want to introduce a law that all cats should be provided with an unlimited supply of catnip and tuna….. That would make our lives so much more enjoyable😼

Finally, what’s your life’s motto? What inspires you to do your best when you can’t find a cozy enough place to sleep?

My life’s motto is…. “You can never get too much sleep,” What inspires me to do my best when I can’t find a cosy enough place to sleep? Food😼

“Cats are a mysterious kind of folk.”
― Sir Walter Scott

Click here to read my answers to Huckleberry’s questions!

Thank you so much for answering my questions, Huckleberry!!
Since you’re here, why don’t you meet my friends from the blogospere too?

Meet Rocket!

Source: Diamond

Ava says hi!

Source: Shanessa

Aw..say hello to little Oreo!

Source: Evin

And that was all! I loved getting to share a bite about all of us with you all! Got any four-legged friends I could befriend? Let me know!

bye!

Thoughtfully yours,
Willy

The Running Dream ~Book Review by Haley~

As mentioned earlier, today we have Haley from My Life Of Faith with a book review on The Running Dream by Wendelin Van Draanen. A teen lifestyle blogger, Haley blogs on a variety of topics and mentions “reading, writing, blogging, sewing (sometimes), kayaking,” among others as her hobbies. She describes herself as a horse lover, book lover, author, artist, American Girl Doll fan and a devout Christian. Make sure you check out her blog here! Getting on with Haley’s review now!

Image Source: Goodreads

Hello everyone!

Welcome to the first post of my blog tour!!!!

Thank you D for being a part of my tour. Be sure to follow along with the rest of the tour here at my blog!

Today I am writing a book review on The Running Dream by Wendelin Van Draanen. I got this book at my local library as a part of their summer reading program. It just so happened that I picked it up and read the excerpt on the back. I was intrigued, so I choose the book as one of the prizes. When I started reading it, I really hoped that it would be “clean”. As it turns out, I love this book! (I love way too many books, lol).

The Running Dream is about a teenage girl who loses her leg in a bus accident. Running is her life, without it, she doesn’t know what to do. The doctors say she’ll be able to walk again, but walking isn’t running. As she is coping with her new life, she meets a new friends, and with her friend’s help, she begins to see that her life is still full of possibility.

Genre:
Novel, Contemporary Young Adult Fiction

Length:
5 sections, 98 chapters, 332 pages.
Some of the chapters are really short. Some are even less than a full page which is why there are so many.

Age:
This is a YA Novel. Age range is Highschool.

Religious Content:
There is a mention of a church service and praying. Other than that, none.

Swearing:
Characters say Oh My God. Other than that, none that I recall.

Other Content:
There is  the mention of boyfriends/girlfriends, and kissing.
The main character starts to become addicted to pain meds, her parents do take care of that though.
The driver who hit the bus was drunk, and he died. One character clearly doesn’t care for him.

My Thoughts:
This is a very inspiring novel. I find it encouraging and moving. It makes you re-think how you might have stared at someone with a limb missing or a disability. For an athlete, specifically a runner, this book would be even more relatable. This book is clearly written for athletes, and I am not athlete, but I still love it.

The Characters:
The track and field team is very supportive of our protagonist, as well as her mom and best friend.


More Reviews:
As always, I recommend you check out other reviews because I am not a professional book reviewer, and I am not an adult. Therefore, it is wise for you to seek the counsel of an adult if you have any questions relating the content of this book.

Here are some more reviews:
*note: they are not necessarily Christian reviews

YA and Kids Book Central
Goodreads

Thank you all so much for reading! Please check out my blog, My Life Of Faith!


That was an interesting review, Haley! The theme sounds rather inspiring and I look forward to checking this book out soon. Thank you very much for sharing!

On a side note, I will be writing a post compiling and acknowledging all your kind ideas and responses to my feedback form in January! I’d love it if you could take a few minutes to check out the form here! A huge thank you to those who took the survey!! I loved reading your thoughts and seeing things from different perspectives!

Thank you for reading!!

Poetry Shout-outs! (Part 2)

So, September has finally come to an end and so has Whispers Of The Soul- the Poetry series that began on September 2 (on my book blog- Paper Hearts).

So, here are the wonderful poet bloggers who submitted one of their own works and the bloggers who suggested their favourite poems. A huge thank you to each and every one of you for your support and co-operation!

Poem Submissions:

1.Maggie from Chicadee Lover Maggie sent in a lovely poem titled Kindness which was absolutely poignant and conveyed a great message. You can read it here.

2.Raven from Raven’s Blog & Journal and Stories by Raven wrote a poem titled Travel in the Mind which was about the power of words. Again, another beautiful poem which most of us can relate to! Check it out here.

3. Evin from A Curly Sue’s Ramblings and A Wanderful Life! sent in a sweet poem named One Shine which portrayed a child’s desire to be who he/she wanted to and their willingness to work for it. Another stunning poem! Head over here to read it.

4. Fahimay from A Writer’s Retreat sent in a poem titled The Caged Bird which I sadly couldn’t post because it was the fourth submission. A profound, poignant and powerful poem, this was based on how women are bound by marriage and their lack of freedom. Check it out here.

Poem Suggestions:

Here are the kind bloggers who suggested their favourite poems to be included in this series. Make sure you check out their blogs; there is a lot worth reading on each of them!

1.Lost Generation by Jonathan Reed.
Suggested by Evin @ A Curly Sue’s Ramblings and A Wanderful Life!

2.Still I Rise by Maya Angelou
Suggested by Mahesh Mali @ Awesomengers and Nathi @ Wayward Scribbles.

3.If by Rudyard Kipling
Suggested by Aanya @ Soaring Firebolt, tkbrownwriter @ By: tkbrown.writer and Nathi @ Wayward Scribbles.

4. Dear March, Come In by Emily Dickinson
Suggested by Lrose @ My Cosy Corner and Lrose5’s Poetry.

5. A Photograph by Shirley Toulson
Suggested by Rejoy Dev @ Teenage.

6. A Thing Of Beauty by John Keats
Suggested by Nathi @ Wayward Scribbles.

7.The Road Not Taken by Robert Frost
Suggested by tkbrownwriter @ By: tkbrown.writer.

8.Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening by Robert Frost
Suggested by Aanya @ Soaring Firebolt.

9.Do Not Stand At My Grave And Weep by Mary Elizabeth Frye
Suggested by girrrrrl_of_two_worlds @ Science-tastic and ghoom gayi ghoom gayi.

10. Mirror by Sylvia Plath
Suggested By Joel Abakah @ Jplatform.


I would once again like to thank all of you for making this series wonderfully amazing. I received some magnificent poems as suggestions and guest posts and I loved every minute I spent reading and writing. Thank you so much for reading, contributing and supporting!
Given below are all the poems (excluding the guest posts) that were included in this series. Click on the one you want to read and it’ll take you to the respective post on Paper Hearts. Happy reading!

Invictus
-William Ernest Henley
Lost Generation
– Jonathan Reed
Still I Rise
– Maya Angelou
Dear March, Come In
– Emily Dickinson
Animals
-Walt Whitman
A Thing Of Beauty
– John Keats
The Road Not Taken
– Robert Frost
A Photograph
– Shirley Toulson
If
-Rudyard Kipling
Stopping By Woods On A Snowy Evening
-Robert Frost
I Measure Every
Grief I Meet

-Emily Dickinson
Do Not Stand At
My Grave And Weep

-Mary Elizabeth Frye
Mirror
-Sylvia Plath

Poetry is a beautiful form of Literature and I hope all of you appreciate the impact a few words can have on a person’s soul. Click here or on the image below if you’d like to explore all the poems in this series! This will take you to a page exhibiting all the poems at once, so you can explore and choose any one of your liking.


Thank you so much for reading!

Poetry Shout-outs! (Part 1)

So, we are halfway past September! Whispers of the Soul, the Poetry series on my book blog is proceeding well and I’d like to take a moment to extend my heartfelt gratitude to all the bloggers who suggested one of their favourite poems and contributed to this series. So, mentioned below are all the bloggers’ whose suggestions have been featured till date. I’ll be putting up a part 2 at the end of this month. Stay tuned!

Poem Suggestions:

Do check out their blogs, all of them are unique and amazing writers in their own ways!

1.Lost Generation by Jonathan Reed.
Suggested by Evin @ A Curly Sue’s Ramblings and A Wanderful Life!

2.Still I Rise by Maya Angelou
Suggested by Mahesh Mali @ Awesomengers and Nathi @ Wayward Scribbles.

3.If by Rudyard Kipling
Suggested by Aanya @ Soaring Firebolt, tkbrownwriter @ By: tkbrown.writer and Nathi @ Wayward Scribbles.

4. Dear March, Come In by Emily Dickinson
Suggested by Lrose @ LRose and Lrose5’s Poetry.

5. A Photograph by Shirley Toulson
Suggested by Rejoy Dev @ Teenage.

6. A Thing Of Beauty by John Keats
Suggested by Nathi @ Wayward Scribbles.

7.The Road Not Taken by Robert Frost
Suggested by tkbrownwriter @ By: tkbrown.writer.


And here are the poems that have been featured in this series so far!

1.Invictus by William Ernest Henley
2.Lost Generation by Jonathan Reed
3.Still I Rise by Maya Angelou
4.Dear March, Come In by Emily Dickinson
5.Animals by Walt Whitman
6.A Thing Of Beauty by John Keats
7. The Road Not Taken by Robert Frost
8.A Photograph by Shirley Toulson
9. If by Rudyard Kipling

7 more poems will be posted in the subsequent days, of which three are guest posts. These will be included in Part 2! Stay tuned!



Thank you so much for your constant support and co-operation! Hope you are enjoying the poems! Click here if you’d like to visit my book blog, pictured below (I go by the name Bookish Thinker there!).


Related Posts:
Poetry Series
Poetry Shout-outs (Part 2)

Previously on Random Specific Thoughts:
A History Of Reading ( Collaboration with Tia @ Tall Blonde Tales)
Disney Q&A with Renee
Thursday Randoms

A History of Reading (A collab. with Tia@Tall Blonde Tales)

Hope you’re all doing great! Today’s post is a collaboration with Tia @ Tall Blonde Tales. She is an amazing friend who writes on relatable lifestyle topics in an informative and interactive manner. Apart from being a brilliant blogger, she is also a Potterhead! You have got to check out her Harry Potter bucket lists, they are fantastic!

Since, the both of us share a common love for reading, what better topic than that, to collaborate on? She penned down a stunning post mentioning the benefits of reading. Make sure you check out her take on the benefits of reading here!

And now for a blast back into the past (and eventual return)! Boy, I wish I could stay there for a while..

A HISTORY OF READING

I find it rather amusing that you’re reading a post about the history of reading while questioning your reading practices(at least overthinkers would!) I’ll get started by explaining what reading means, quoting Wikipedia of course, “Reading is the complex cognitive process of decoding symbols to derive meaning. It is a form of language processing. Reading is a means for language acquisition, communication, and sharing information and ideas.”

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels

I know history is often considered a boring subject by many but reading has saved and continues to save many lives both figuratively and literally, that I think not knowing a brief account of its history is almost a crime. Reading as an asocial solo activity is actually a relatively recent phenomenon. 

Let’s go through its history one century at a time. Print technology dates back to as far as AD 594. The earliest kind of print technology, which was a system of hand printing was developed in China, Japan and Korea. According to Wikipedia, “The history of reading dates back to the invention of writing during the 4th millennium BC”. 

The 13th, 14th and 15th centuries (one century at a time after this, I promise):

In 1295, i.e the 13th century, Marco Polo returned to Europe after a period of exploration in China. He brought the Chinese art of woodblock printing along with his return expediting the spread of this technology across Europe which subsequently, led to an increase in the demand for books which in turn, led to booksellers exporting books to many different countries. Johann Gutenberg came to the rescue when booksellers found it increasingly difficult to keep up with rapidly increasing demands by inventing a new method of printing. The Gutenberg Bible is known to be the first printed book and was printed in Europe in 1445 by Johannes Gutenberg.

Fast forward to the 17th century:

By the 17th century, text technologies like moveable type and the rise of vernacular writing gave birth to the leisure reading we practice today. Also, as urban culture gained more popularity in China, uses of print diversified.

Photo by Suzy Hazelwood on Pexels

The 18th century:

Quoting Wikipedia yet again, “during the Age of Enlightenment (1715-1789), elite individuals promoted passive reading, rather than creative interpretation. Reading has no concrete laws, but lets readers escape to produce their own products introspectively, promoting deep exploration of texts during interpretation.” Reading played an important role in the French Revolution(1789) where controversial views were published and spread in the form of brochures and magazines. These were also read aloud for the benefit of the illiterate. Naturally, through the 17th and 18th centuries, literacy rates increased in many parts of Europe.

The 18th century had some peculiar views which included considering the act of reading in bed as dangerous and immoral. It was also thought that reading would cause women to question existing practices and beliefs. This was a widespread belief in many countries around the world.

We’re almost there i.e the 21st century.  Before the Industrial Revolution (1760-1840), only a tiny percentage of the population in many countries were considered literate. Europeans who could read did so aloud, Ancient Greeks and the monks of Europe did the same too. Classical Athens and the Islamic Caliphate were among the few pre-modern societies where the literacy levels were comparatively high. 

Photo by Wendy van Zyl on Pexels

The 19th century, finally:

 By the 19th century, mandatory schooling, cheaper production, and wider availability of books caused a noticeable increase in the literacy rate which benefitted reading. Towards the end  of the 19th century, gas and electric lighting also ensured that reading didn’t have to be limited to the day time.The development and subsequent growth of the rail network helped make novels cheaper still at railway stations. Spreading of literacy and diverse kinds of reading material led to people reading more voraciously (newspapers and periodicals) and by the late 1800s i.e the 19th century, it had branched out into children’s literature and novels. 

The 20th century to the now:

Well, soon after came the 20th century where reading as we know became something of a usual act ranging from educational purposes to mental relaxation purposes. Something of a turning point in the 21st century was the increasing popularity of ebooks which substituted a large number of hard copies and became highly preferred due to the ease of use and portability it provided. But, interestingly, starting back in 1971, Michael S. Hart launched Project Gutenberg and digitized the U.S. Declaration of Independence, which became the first eBook in the world. The idea soon gained popularity and its public use skyrocketed with various companies producing their own e-readers and e-books.

This is by no means, a wholesome or compact history. We compiled information from a variety of sources and have mainly focused on the development of reading as both an act and hobby from the 13th century to the present while laying special emphasis on the European part although much of everything mentioned here took place at relatively the same time everywhere with variations due to socio-economic conditions and traditional beliefs in particular places.


So, that was all for the history. A huge thank you to Tia for doing this with me! I had great fun working with her! Don’t forget to check out her take on reading’s benefits here! Thank you so much for reading! Let me know what you think!

Previously on Random Specific Thoughts:
Disney Q&A with Renee

Similar Posts:
Parallels of Life (ft. Eleanor@Wishing Upon A Star)
Harry Potter Q&A with Aanya
Q&A with Catie

Disney Q&A with Renee

Today’s post is a collaboration with Renee from Renee’s Corner. She has a really entertaining blog where she posts stories, comics and artworks, check it out here!

So, given below are the questions I asked Renee and her answers.
Feel free to answer any of the questions I’ve asked, if you’d like. I’d love to read your take on them as well! Getting into it now!

1) Which is your favourite Disney character? Why?
Renee: I don’t know 😅

2) Who is your least favourite Disney princess? Why?
Renee: No one 😅

3) Would you watch Pirates of the Caribbean if Captain Jack Sparrow was portrayed by someone other than Johnny Depp?
Renee: Nope. He is the person who makes up Pirates Of The Caribbean according to me.

4) What do you think of the Princess Diaries book series?
Renee: I haven’t read it 😅yet.

5) Who do you most resemble in looks and habits in terms of Disney characters?
Renee: In looks, I would say Merida, since I have curly hair, but in habit, I would say Belle, since I’m a bookworm.

6) What did you think of Naomi’s portrayal of Princess Jasmine?
Renee: I guess it’s good, I’m not sure.

7) Did you like The Chronicles of Narnia’s book series or movies more? Why?
Renee: I would say movie, since I haven’t read the series XD.

8) What do you think makes Disney stand apart in the entertainment industry?
Renee: Everything. Literally everything. It has it’s own category of princesses and has entertainment for all ages.

9) What is your opinion of the author, Pamela Travers and Walt Disney himself after watching the movie, Saving Mr.Banks?
Renee: Well, I haven’t seen Saving Mr. Banks, so I don’t know…

10) Would you say Disney’s movies have influenced your way of thinking and imagination skills?
Renee: Imagination? Definitely. Thinking? Maybe.

11) How would you rate The Pirates of the Caribbean film series on a scale of 1 to 10, with 10 being the worst?
Renee: 3.

12) What do you think of the soundtrack in Mary Poppins (1964)?
Renee: I haven’t heard it or seen the movie.

13) Would you agree that Disney’s animated movies hold lessons for adults too?
Renee: Maybe. In a hidden way.

14) Is there a movie that you have watched so many times as a kid that it feels nostalgic now?
Renee: I think maybe Tangled.

15) Finally, if you could create a character of your own, who or what would you make?
Renee: I would make a tomboy and in her story, she goes and rescues the prince XD.


I believe Disney has been a part of all our lives at some point or the other. Personally, I feel so many of their movies often have a little something for everyone! Make sure you check out her questions and my answers here !
Thank you for reading!

Previously on Random Specific Thoughts:
2 AM
Thursday Randoms

Similar Posts:
A History of Reading )Collaboration with Tia@Tall Blonde Tales)
Parallels of Life (ft. Eleanor@Wishing Upon A Star)
Harry Potter Q&A with Aanya
Q&A with Catie