story snippets | a random morning scene.

So I’m doing this new course on playwriting and it’s been super fun so far.  When I add it to my Intro to Theatre course, it gives me this perpetual feeling of “I’d read this textbook and do these assignments for fun and now I’m getting credit for learning this???  WHAT IS LIFE?!”  (Yeah, I’m super happy with where I am in college.  SIX MORE MONTHS!)

Anyway, a friend sent me a picture via Snapchat the other morning and it inspired the subject for a wordless scene I had to do for the playwriting course.  I don’t have the characters named, but I know who they are in my mind.  (*elusive smirky/winky face*)

Imagine your OTP.

SETTING – kitchen/living room section of a lived-in apartment

GIRL (early 20s) stumbles into room from doorway leading to bedroom; wearing pjs. Stretches and yawns, then rubs face as she slowly makes her way to the kitchen section of the apartment. Flicks on coffee maker, listens to it whirr for a minute before burying head in cabinet.

GUY (mid 20s) walks in texting on phone; also in pjs. Stops to finish text, then drops phone on couch. Opens his mouth to say something to GIRL, but GIRL, head still in cabinet, puts her hand up with a firm shake of the head. GUY smiles, pulls out a barstool, sits down, lays forehead on the bar.

GIRL pulls two coffee cups out of the cabinet, setting both down next to the coffee maker.

GUY picks head up, stays sitting down but puts two slices of bread in the toaster.

GIRL leans on counter, waiting for coffee to brew while trying not to fall asleep again.

GUY stands up, walks to fridge, pulls out jam, starts spreading it across the toast.

GIRL is startled awake by the coffee timer. Pours coffee, snaps fingers at GUY, who hands her the half and half. GIRL pours half and half into coffee cups, shakes a little sugar into the cups.

GUY puts half and half into fridge, gives GIRL a spoon (which she uses to stir the coffee with), puts toast on plates, exchanges one plate of toast for one coffee cup. GUY leans over and kisses GIRL’s cheek, then pulls away as she grouchily tries to swat him.

BOTH carry their coffee and toast to the couch (facing audience), sit down.

GUY picks up newspaper and starts reading.

GIRL, sipping coffee, stares at GUY and smiles. She leans over to kiss him, then leans her head on his shoulder.

GUY smiles at newspaper but leans his head to rest on hers.

Black out.

What do you think?  Want more (of this or other scenes I’ll be writing)?

songs that make me happy.

We all have those days when you just feel like hiding under a rock and crying until you die.

I’m the worst at handling Those Days.  I get angry, snap at my siblings, and make poor choices.  But in the last few months, I’ve learned how to cope in a slightly healthier manner.

One way is to listen to music that makes me happy.  Music does wonders for my mood, sometimes helping it (and sometimes hindering it like when i started sobbing over a fanvid the other day but we won’t talk about that).  But mostly helping it.

Anyway, here are a few songs I listen to when I’m sad or just want to feel happier.

This is such a good song.  I discovered it when watching Easy A (which has just the bEST SOUNDTRACK OF EVER), and have since listened to it on repeat… repeatedly.  *wink*

I first found this song on a Verily article about kinda sad music that makes you feel kinda happy, and it was the only one on the list that I’d never heard.  I’ve since memorized the song… and the rest of the album.

I have literally no idea why this song makes me so happy.  Maybe it’s because I love Dodie’s cover of it, or maybe it’s because I wanna sing it to a guy someday… or maybe just because it’s happy.  I DUNNO.

I don’t even know why I like this song.  I forget about it every now and then, and when I remember it, it’s like remembering an old friend.

This is from {500} Days of Summer, which my friend Thea recommended to me a few years ago and I’ve been in love ever since.  (I also FRIKKIN LOVE Joseph Gordon-Levitt’s version in the movie.)

This song was on repeat while I studied for a hard test, and it made the super-long study sessions so much happier.  : )  And it’s even CUTER when you find out that they’re MARRIED and they wrote it FOR THEIR WEDDING.  GAH.

There are quite a few songs by Sleeping at Last that make me happy, and this is one of them.  (Plus it inspired a crucial part in my novel… *wink*)

This one sounds like a Disney song, which is why I like it so much.  There’s also a piano version, but this one’s my favorite because of the winds and strings.

This one’s from Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants 2 (WHICH IS A GREAT MOVIE – DO NOT DISS THAT MOVIE), and I fell in love with it the second I heard it.  Just ignore what it’s about.  :P

This one’s just a classic.  (Also, I can play it on the uke.)

Gosh, I love this song.  It makes me wanna get up and dance!

Trying to put very few “romantic” songs on here because of obvious reasons, butttt… I love this one too much to not add it.  If you’ve seen About Time, watch this version.  (And then let me know because I seriously love that movie.)

This is the only song here with a bad word but love it too much to not include.

I love Taylor Swift.  No shame.  I may not agree with every decision she makes, but who agrees with every decision I make?  I have the utmost respect for her, and think she’s an incredible young woman.  And this is one of my favorite TSwift songs.

This is a newer favorite, but it always makes me want to jump around and dance (even though it’s about depression – “this one’s a contradiction because of how happy it sounds… but the lyrics are so down”).

Whelp.  That’s about it.  I’ve made a handy dandy playlist for you, if you want to listen to all of these but don’t want to keep coming back here to click on another video.  You’re welcome.

Have you heard any of these?  Any new ones?  What are some of your happy songs?

reblog: should we, as christians, be drinking the pumpkin spice latte?


Not Exactly Subtle

GTY_pumpkin_spice_latte_jt_150817_12x5_1600It’s that time of year when the weather begins to turn, the leaves start to change color, and all across the nation the Pumpkin Spice Latte is back on the menu.

I would caution my brothers and sisters (let’s be honest, mostly sisters) to think before they drink.

Anytime something becomes this popular and accepted by society, we need to step back and ask if we’ve ceased merely being in the world and have, in fact, become part of it (Couldn’t find the chapter and verse, but I know it’s in the KJV).  Allow me to incredibly humbly suggest a couple of things we ought to meditate on and pray over before we imbibe the PSL.

1. A study of “Pumpkin Spice” in the original languages

When we break down the etymology of the name of Satan’s favorite drink, it shows how truly subversive the Tempter can be in trying…

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don’t you worry, child.


Flashback to May of this past year.  I was obsessing over something to the point of exhaustion.  I wanted something to happen so badly that I didn’t know what I would do if it didn’t happen.

I spent hours thinking and overthinking about this thing, texting friends and coming up with multiple scenarios in my head.

To be completely honest with you guys, I didn’t handle it well.  The only thing that got me out of this abyss of overanalyzing and obsessing was the knowledge that what I was doing was INCREDIBLY STUPID and that no amount of worrying would make it happen.

By the time The Thing came around, I wasn’t worried about it any more.  I’d given it to God (daily, y’all – d a i l y), and I’d forced myself to stop thinking about it and trust that God had my best interests at heart.

And guess what?  Nothing happened, and I was okay with that.

I’m not perfect, guys.  Far from it.  I just wanted to share this small thing I learned – that sometimes it’s okay to stop thinking, stop obsessing, stop placing your entire happiness on one small event that may or may not even happen.  Give it to God, trust Him, and (if you can) forget about it.

God wants your best, guys.  Even if you can’t see it, even if you don’t believe it.  His ways are best and you’ve just gotta trust that.  Ask Him for strength and then wait on Him.

I’ll be back later with some ranty posts I’ve been thinking about for a while (look forward to it *smirky emoji*), but I just wanted to share that with you guys.  What has God been teaching you lately?

“should i stay or should i go now…” | stranger things.

stranger-things-poster(You know you’re a fan when this song makes you tear up.)

Before I start, here’s the obligatory disclaimer: This show has language.  Like crazy.  And little kids saying the words.  (Okay so they’re like twelve but I’ve adopted them because they’re all so cute.)  And there’s a sexy scene in one episode.  I love this show, but it’s got stuff in it, so don’t go off and watch it and then get mad at me for not notifying you of that fact.  (It’s happened.  I kid you not.  XD)  You have been warned.

(Also, this isn’t a review, it’s just a place for me to fangirl.)

Okay, so Stranger Things, if you haven’t heard of it, is the brainchild of two brothers, and it’s Netflix’s most recent (amazing) original series.  My family just got Netflix streaming, so we’re pretty new to it and haven’t seen the other shows, so I can’t say how this one compares but it’s pRETTY FREAKIN’ GOOD.  (I have very little desire to see Orange Is the New Black, so…  Netflix is where I watch Friends and Gilmore Girls.)

stranger-things1My sister and I had heard a lot about it, and after a friend recommended it, we decided to try it.  We watched the first episode in a dark, empty house, which heightened the experience significantly.

And, from that first episode, we were hooked.  We watched an episode or two every other night (after finishing our school and other responsibilities, obviously) and finished it in a week.

Not only is the plot amazing, it’s so original.  It’s like Stephen King + Stand By MeThe Goonies + Jaws + 80’s + sci-fi amazingness + everything Spielberg.  And it’s incredible.

But the characters are my favorite.


lucas, dustin, mike, and eleven.  (aka my children)

First, you’ve got the kids – a group of literal twelve-year-olds, shoved into this incredibly adult situation when their best friend goes missing and crazy stuff starts happening.

Not gonna spoil much, but Dustin is hilarious, Lucas is so wise, Mike is just ALL AROUND AWESOME, and Eleven is precious.  (And Will’s great, too, but he’s only in like eight scenes.  But the scenes he’s in made me weep  – he’s SUCH A GOOD ACTOR.  {see his “should I stay or should I go” scene})

They’re all good good actors.  Gaten (Dustin) was in Les Miserables on Broadway before this, Noah (Will) was the voice of Charlie in the new Charlie Brown movie (and he’s also in a freaky Panic! at the Disco music video), and Millie (Eleven) is an amazing singer as well.  I expect great things from all of the actors, and if anyone hurts any them, I’ll hammer some nails into a baseball bat and hurt them right back.

Also, Mileven is L I F E, and I will ship it until the Upside Down rights itself.

Then you’ve got the older peoples.


idiot steve, jonathan, and nancy

I love that a repeated line in the show is “You’re an idiot, Steve Harrington” because when my sister and I would say it, it was like we were quoting the show.  So it worked.  All you need to know about him is that he’s a jerk who can swing a baseball bat.  The end.

And Jonathan, aka my precious gumdrop, is too pure for words.  That scene when he apologized for that thing?  I was literally about to whisper to my sister, “If he apologizes, he is mine.”  And then he apologized.  ASDFGHJKL.  Too beautiful.  Too majestic.  My love. Ugh.  All the feels.

Nancy’s great, too.  Talk about character development.  (Minus the scene in front of the Christmas tree in the end – like, Nancy, have you not changed at all.)

Jancy is also life, and I knew from the second their eyes met across the cafeteria that it would happen.  (Except it didn’t.  So I’m still angry.  But it has Happening Potential.)

Then you’ve got the much older people.


sheriff jim hopper and jo march joyce byers

Jim Hopper’s such a deep character whose backstory we really don’t figure out ’til the last episode.  Plus, he’s that grumpy old teddy bear we can’t help but love and he’s jUST SO GREAT – and honestly if more child kidnapping searches were led by him, so many more kids would be found.

Also, Joyce.  Can we just talk about Joyce for a minute???  She’s been working at that awful job for, what, twelve years?  Never calling in sick, always picking up shifts for others, just to provide for her kids.  And she literally stops at nothing to find Will.  (And Winona is, as always, flawless.  The range of her acting in the different episodes of the show – and the flashbacks – is just phenomenal.

I love these two.  And, yes, I ship them so hard.  (This show has so many ships, guys.  SO. MANY. SHIPS.)


A word of warning, though – it’s definitely freaky.  The scariest part is that they never show the audience the monster ’til the end, just teasing at it (much like the shark in Jaws). I personally think the build-up is freakier than the actual thing – the monster coming through the wall, anyone? – but it’s still scary.  (And, like I said before, there’s lots of language.)

So while I can’t recommend it without that disclaimer, I do still recommend it if you love sci-fi or well-written shows.  If you’ve seen it, what do you think?

welcome, october.


i live in a beautiful place. be jelly.

“I’m so glad I live in a world where there are Octobers.”
– L.M. Montgomery

Fall is my favorite season.  Sweaters, freshly-sharpened pencils (bouquets of them), scarfs, knee-high boots, fuzzy socks, and amazing colors are everywhere.  I live in the mountains, so I’m blessed with a lot of gorgeous mountain views, which are at their peak of beauty in autumn.  And movie marathons in snuggly blankets (which I did last night, complete with some spiced cider) are definitely a plus, too.  I’m not a huge pumpkin spice latte fan or anything (GASP), but I love pumpkins and hot chocolate and warm desserts.  (And I wonder why I get a little chubbier this time of year…)

Ever since I read Rainbow Rowell’s Attachments, I’ve always put the following conversation with this season.

From: Beth Fremont

To: Jennifer Scribner-Snyder

Sent: Thurs, 10/14/1999 11:09 AM

Subject: October, at last!

Callooh! Callay!

<<Jennifer to Beth>> At last? October is half over. And what’s in October anyway?

<<Beth to Jennifer>> Not “what’s in,” what is. October. My favorite month. Which, by the way, has only half begun.

Some find it melancholy. “October,” Bono sings, “and the trees are stripped bare . . .”

Not I. There’s a chill in the air that lifts my heart and makes my hair stand on end. Every moment feels meant for me. In October, I’m the star of my own movie—I hear the soundtrack in my head (right now, it’s “Suite: Judy Blue Eyes”)—and I have faith in my own rising action.

I was born in February, but I come alive in October.

<<Jennifer to Beth>> You’re a nut.

<<Beth to Jennifer>> A hazelnut. A filbert.

October, baptize me with leaves! Swaddle me in corduroy and nurse me with split pea soup. October, tuck tiny candy bars in my pockets and carve my smile into a thousand pumpkins.

O autumn! O teakettle! O grace!

<<Jennifer to Beth>> I do love tiny candy bars.

<<Beth to Jennifer>> Merry October!

<<Jennifer to Beth>> All right, Merry October! Why not?

Are there other factors in your unreasonably good mood? Non-autumnal reasons?

<<Beth to Jennifer>> Nope, I don’t think so. I had a really crappy night last night—I went to a Sacajawea party with Chris—but I think that’s actually enhancing my good mood today. I woke up thinking about how, no matter how bad everything else is, there’s still October.

from Attachments by Rainbow Rowell

What are some of your favorite things about Fall?

i read banned books.

banned books week.jpg

I follow a lot of bookstagrammers and have been reminded several times this week that it’s Banned Books Week.

As I looked over the list of banned classics and the lists of the top ten books banned every year since ’01, I realized that I’ve read a lot of them.  And I don’t think that’s a bad thing.

For instance, The Bible was banned for “religious content.”  To Kill a Mockingbird was banned for “racial slurs and profanity.”  Lord of the Rings (and other Tolkien novels) were banned as “satanic.”  The Grapes of Wrath was banned for “sexual content and profanity.” (Find all these reasons and more here.)

I didn’t write a blog post about Banned Books Week last year, but I thought about it.  And now, since I’ve read so many more classics (seriously, this American Lit course is kind of ridiculous), I have many more thoughts about it.

(Hence the blog post.)

One of the things I’ve thought about books is that while there are valid reasons to ban books from libraries – especially school libraries – it’s ultimately just up to the reader. There’s nothing stopping a reader from simply going to the bookstore or getting a book online that wasn’t available at their library.  Of course, it’s less likely they’ll spend money on it rather than just find a library that has it, but there’s very little point to keeping a book out of a high school library.  (Elementary and middle schools are a completely different story, however.)

However, the main reason is that people shouldn’t tell other people what not to read.  I understand parents not allowing their children to read something, but you can’t just mass-ban something just because you don’t agree with it.

Many of these books were banned for good reason, and I understand putting warning stickers on them or something (like the “Explicit” stickers on albums)… but banning them?  What about all the good in them?

To Kill a Mockingbird isn’t just racial surs – it’s about friendship and family and – HELLO – the opposite of racism.

Lord of the Rings isn’t just – well, first of all, it isn’t even satanic, okay?  And it’s about love and friendship and courage and defying the odds and it’s just all-around amazing.

The Hunger Games is about standing up for what’s right and fighting for what you believe in.

Harry Potter is about tenacity and friendship and John 15:13 love and courage and perseverance.  (And that doesn’t even scratch the surface – read my posts about it here and here.)

Some of my favorite books of all time have language and/or inappropriate scenes in them. I recommend Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell to lots of friends because I connected so much to it, as I do with The Little Women Letters by Gabrielle Donnelly.  Both have language (although the former has significantly more than the latter), but I still recommend them. Why?  Because they’re good.

Bottom line, books shouldn’t be banned.  Decide what you want to read for yourself.  If you don’t like language, don’t read something that has language – simple as that.  I’ve “ClearPlay’d” books before for friends (and for myself) and while I kind of dislike it because you’re defacing a book (!!!!!!), it does get rid of the language.

Have you ever read a *gasp* banned book?  If so, which one?  Do you think they should be banned?