Friday, September 30, 2011

Rosh Hashanah 5772!


L'shana tova!:dummy:It's the 2nd day of Rosh Hashanah! Or, our New Year. Sorry about not posting for a week! That's really long! ;A; It's gotten colder, and I don't think  we'll hit 70 again this season.:iconwtfromanoplz:We're going to be mostly in the low 60s for the next few days. Monday's supposed to be really cold, being in the high 50s. Wow. Fall's here.:icongermanyplz:

Went to services yesterday from 10am until almost 2pm. Long day, but really nice.:iconhappychinaplz:The night before, we were at services from 7pm until about 9:30pm. It's interesting to see the people that only show up for the High Holy Days or Days of Awe. (10-day period from Rosh Hashanah until Yom Kippur.) We were pretty packed for the night one. Not so much for the 'morning' one. Understandable, because some people can't get off work for it.:iconwtfukplz: 

There were so many desserts at the potluck!:drool:I'm kind of glad we didn't bring one. Too much to choose from. We're supposed to eat sweet things for a sweet new year.:icondenmarkplz:A couple of honey cakes (like usual), a thing that looked like a brownie but had the consistency of fudge/mousse (weird, but good), bread puddings, regular brownies, honey and apples (also a must for Rosh Hashanah!), and more. A couple of members from our congregation had provided the honey, made from their bees, in little jars for families to take. Usually, the honey's from Israel. But, this was a really nice touch.:iconchibihungaryplz:I like that our synagogue hands out those little jars of honey for every family, every year. Sometimes, we have a few left over. 

I thought I might be able to make a honey cake for this special Shabbat. But, we ran out of time. This Shabbat is so special, the challah's in a different shape. Instead of a regular knotted loaf, it's a spiral-y round one. Some of them have raisins or even chocolate chips. But, we got a plain one. They're good enough on their own.:iconhongkongplz:We had salmon with some margarine and dill, scalloped potatoes, and broccoli. It was really good!:iconitalyplz:We got black forest cake for dessert. (Still haven't had it yet.) Looks so awesome!:iconfrancisplz:

I looked around online a few days ago, to see if there are any services on there. I feel that I'm lacking something, because Mom can't go most of the time to services. Even if we go, I feel like I need 'more'. Hard to describe.:icontinoplz:Anyways, I found the largest group, that say they are the first online congregation. It's a part of an actual temple, but they do special things on their site and record services. Sounds great, right? Their views are really weird, though.:iconusaplz:They're very humanistic, which is interesting, but the rest of their stuff is bizarre. They don't have traditional prayers (they make them up), they don't mention G-d (on the few vids I watched), and a few other things that seemed 'off'. Just in case, I signed up for their newsletter. I'll unsubscribed if I don't like their Rosh Hashanah vids.:iconnataliaplz:

Next, I found a really interesting group that's put out by PunkTorah, called OneShul. This is a congregation that's entirely online. It doesn't come from some temple. There are no rabbis, so it's lay-led. This one seems to have more  potential, but still isn't quite what I want.:iconheroamericaplz:They aren't affiliated with anything, but their lay-leaders are usually reform or conservative. There's a few orthodox people as well. So the site is more traditional than that other one. They have Torah study every Monday, a Rosh Hodesh service every month, classes, and every so often some Shabbat services. Not every week, like I want. I think I'll look around some more at some point. I'll still check back with this one every so often. Because, at least it's something.:shrug:
anzu2snow's anime, manga, reviews, recommendations, blogs and lists at Anime-Planet - anime | manga | reviews

I joined Anime-Planet. I used to have an account with them, but it was so long ago, I decided to make a new one.:iconsleepygreeceplz:I like this site, because you can keep track of what you've watched or read (they have a manga section as well), what you've dropped, what you want to watch, etc. There's also a love/hate section for characters. You can rate, review, or recommend things. There's a badge system, too. Kind of funny ones. I can't believe how many anime shows I've completed, and how many I've dropped.:iconitalyishorrifiedplz:But, this is over the last few years, including some shows like Astro Boy I watched as a little kid. Some of the shows I dropped because I couldn't find more episodes online, or I truly hated it (FLCL for example:iconlietplz:), or it didn't really 'move' me/was too long to start. The ones I felt didn't really move me were things like Bleach. Which is an incredibly long series.:iconnorwayunimpressedplz:Almost as long as Naruto. It didn't give me that same pull, though. It's interesting to see it in a graph.:iconchibinitalyplz:

A couple of days ago, I went on the search for more anime to watch. (Since I finished a series, and I might drop another. Beelzebub might not be for me.:iconpolandplz:) I didn't realize that October's the start of the fall anime season. So, there's some really good looking new shows coming up. Here are the ones I think might have the most potential: Ben-To, Boku wa Tomodachi ga Sukunai (I Don't Have Many Friends), Guilty Crown, Un-Go, and Phi Brain: Kami no Puzzle. Also, found a few older, really not that old, shows: Katanagatari (Sword Story), Umineko no Naku Koro ni (When the Seagulls Cry), Mawaru Penguindrum (Spinning Penguindrum). So, yay! Some possibilities.:la:

Finished editing the hard copy of chapter 14. Just need to transfer those edits to the Word version. Than, I can finally post it, and start chapter 15. Some people sounded really interested in it, when I talked to them at services. So, I guess it sounds good, and I might have some potential buyers?:iconseychelles-plz: 
Made this a couple of days ago. My first Thai dish! It's chicken and garlic rice, with peas, and a dipping sauce. Instead of a chicken breast, I used chicken thighs, because that was all we had.:iconkikuplz:Made it harder to cut.:shakefish:But, both that and the rice were very interestingly made.:nod:The dipping sauce had soy sauce, ginger, sugar, and rice vinegar. It was really tasty!:iconchibispainplz:(Especially the rice!)

Friday, September 23, 2011

First Day of Fall!


Yay! I like fall.:iconchibinitalyplz:It's cool and crisp outside. Leaves turn beautiful colors. Everything just has a different 'feel' to it. It doesn't feel like fall. Although, it's kind of nice. Our weather hasn't felt very 'normal' lately anyways.:iconwtfromanoplz:It's currently 78 degrees. Feels more like summer.:iconkikuplz:

I haven't posted in a while, because I was sick.:iconsickplz:Head felt like it was detached and spinning. Felt like throwing up most of the time. Back ached too. Wahoo!:iconlietplz:Didn't have much energy to do a lot of stuff. But, now I'm feeling much better!:iconchibipolandplz:I've been much more on top of things. And, haven't felt like fainting or throwing up.:iconromanotwitchplz:

Mom just got a rollator. I think it looks cool.:iconthailandplz:Has a seat, compartment to put things in, can transform from being a 'walker' to a wheelchair, has adjustable handles, brakes, etc. Maybe she'll be able to go to more things this way.:eager:Won't have to worry about if there will be any wheelchairs at something. 

Finished Gosick. It was an ok anime. Not the best, but ok.:iconchibicanadaplz:Really liked the ending! Victorique's father's murdered by her mother. Her mother dies in the fire they set to the stage. One of the magician twins died in the fire as well. (The one who was more kind and kept a cool head.) The more violent brother tries to kill Victorique even though he swore to her mother that he'd save her. Eventually, he ends up saving her. After he dies on the ship that he managed to smuggle her on, the shock sets in and her hair turns grey. Interesting way to show her shock and her change in behavior. Meanwhile, Kujo was forced back to Japan, and ended up fighting in the war. At the end of the war, they manage to find each other. Victorique had traveled all the way to Japan on her own, and found the address where his family lived from one of his letters to her. They couldn't really understand each other, but they knew who she was. When he returned from the war, she was there to greet him. They eventually got married. Very nice.:iconhappychinaplz:

Just dropped Gate 7. Just can't get into it.:iconromanoplz:Kind of boring honestly. Might be done with the writing part of chapter 14. Next is more editing. Worked more on the article in You Maga on cherries that I'm writing out. Worked on the Hetalia heritage meme. Figured out what I'll put on Belarus. I didn't realize their national food was latkes! Crazy!:dummy:But, I'm thinking of using their national flower, which is flax. We'll see how the others turn out. 

Played more of my clarinet. Did some of my new jazz book and klezmer tunes. Actually played better than I thought I would today. Got into it more.
Started watching Iryu Sousa today. It's really good so far. Another great looking detective series. This one's about the lead investigator of the Metropolitan Police Department First Investigation Division Scientific Criminal Unit (quite a mouthful), Satoshi Itomura. His team's job is to handle and gather evidence to prosecute criminals. Itomura is a bit different, not only does he gather lost articles of criminals, he brings attention to 'damaged goods' left behind by the victims. In this first episode, a pianist is murdered while he's playing. The key items Itomura focuses on is a toy piano and a recorder. The toy piano was given to him by his mother, and he clung to it while he was in an orphanage. It's what kept him going. He kept it later as a keepsake, and to remind him not to become like his violent abusive father. The recorder had recorded his death. But, the killer tried to record over it. It was very interesting how it came together in the end. 

Beelzebub was pretty funny. Although, its charm is starting wear off already.:iconusaplz:It seemed 'lacking' in this last episode. I'll give it a little more of a chance. The baby's still naked, and the artist clearly defined his downstairs, if you know what I mean.:iconwtfukplz:Kind of distracting. The crying all the time's a bit annoying too. The school seems a bit weird. I know it's for delinquents, but it's strange. But, we'll see how the next episode is. 

Monday, September 19, 2011

National Butterscotch Pudding Day!


One of my favorite types of pudding.:la:Actually, I love butterscotch in any form. Good stuff. Too bad we don't have any in the house.:iconnataliaplz:It's also Talk Like a Pirate Day. Also, in Japan it's Respect for the Aged Day or Keiro no Hi. 

Watched the last special for Nodame Cantabile. It was really good. The only bad thing was the last part wasn't up.:iconromanoplz:So, I missed the last 10-15 of it. But, I read in some of the comments that Chiaki finally kisses Nodame. About time! He wasn't being honest with himself most of the time. Nodame's first recital at the castle was pretty funny, nice, and interesting. Her dress wouldn't fit her, so she decided to wear something like Mozart's outfit, since she was playing Mozart. She even made people laugh at times. She added a song at the end. But, did a great job. She was getting a ton of offers after her performance. It was cute that when Chiaki had gone back to Japan on tour, he 'secretly' wanted to buy Nodame a ring. But, he didn't know her size and was talked into buying a necklace instead. My guess is he gave it to her at the end. I'll miss their hilarious antics, and the emotional heartfelt moments.:happycry:I still strongly recommend this series!:iconchibinitalyplz:

Ao no Exorcist was just too awesome!:iconfrancisplz:I read that this Sunday might be the last episode. It can't be.:icongermanyplz:Feels like they've just started. And, at least Yukio finally got to know the truth about his mother and Satan. Plus, they just opened the gate to the other world (maybe permanently?). So, there's no boundaries anymore. Maybe this is just the end of the season. A lot more believable if it is.:icontinoplz:A lot of shows end their seasons on or around their 24th episode, so makes sense. Almost done with translating the next sentence about the cherries article in You Maga.
Yesterday, I started a cute anime called Ikoku Meiro Croisee or Crossroads in a Foreign Labyrinth. It's basically about people coming from 2 different cultures and trying to understand each other. It takes place in the 2nd half of the 19th century, when Japanese culture was starting to become popular in the West. A young Japanese girl, Yune, accompanies a French traveler, on his journey back to France. And, offers to help at the family's ironwork shop in Paris. Oscar's nephew and shop owner Claude reluctantly accepts to take care of Yune. They slowly start to learn about each other's culture and come to an understanding. There's actually quite a bit of French in this series. They even have the episode titles in both Japanese and French. Very cool to someone who studied French, and is studying Japanese currently. This seems more 'real' with the many cultural differences and the time period, compared to most animes. Yune's so cute, and tries to understand as much as she can about French life. She already knows French, but is afraid to speak it in front of actual French speakers. Very interesting, and has a lot of potential.:iconeestiplz:
Also started Beelzebub on Saturday. I got tired of Sket Dance. They seem to just do the same type of jokes over and over again. Gets old.:iconhongkongplz:So, noticing how popular this series is, I decided to test it out. It was hilarious and bizarre!:rofl:I can see why it's so popular. Not sure how it can be a long on-going series. But, I only know from the 1st episode what it's like.:iconicelandmochiplz:Tatsumi Oga is a first year student at Ishiyama High School. It's a school for delinquents, where he's called the 'strongest juvenile delinquent'. One day while sleeping next to a river, Tatsumi sees a man floating down it. Tatsumi pulls him to shore and the man splits in half, revealing a baby boy. This boy, Beelzebub, is the son of the demon king. And, Tatsumi, along with Beelzebub's demon maid Hilda, has been chosen as the one to raise him. This baby's crazy! He'll electrocute people when he's angry, bored, or in some form of distress.:iconitalyishorrifiedplz:He likes to pee a lot, too.

Did some cleaning today. Swept and mopped my bathroom floor. Wahoo!:dummy: Watched D no Arashi. I'm really liking this series so far. The stories are interesting. This time they did documentaries on a transgendered woman, and on a mangaka (manga author/creator/or artist). The transgendered woman's name was Marie. She wanted to know if things had healed correctly after her surgery about a year ago. Turned out everything from the x-rays of the chest up, looks like any other woman would. The only thing that looks different from a woman born female, was a metal object down below. It's to keep things open. It was interesting. For the mangaka, they wanted to see what it was like to be around him 4 hours before his deadline. I don't think that was too wise.:iconkikuplz:But, it's actually their fans that suggest these things. It's whatever gets the most points each week. The only thing I haven't liked so far is the parts on the guy who calls himself 'the largest man in Japan'. That's difficult to watch, I'm sorry.:iconromanotwitchplz:I can take the plastic surgery and prosthetics segments, more than I can take watching the segments on him. I'm open, but that's just unhealthy to watch.:iconlietplz:
Gintama was really nice this time. I like when they do stories like these. Gintoki was thrown in jail by an 'evil' warden. His cellmate had kept writing letters to his son for years. And, pretty recently he started getting responses back every week. So, he would write everyday, and then the warden would mail it, and give him the next letter. And it went on like that for a while, until Gintoki showed up. He eventually found out that the warden was the one replying to the old man. And, that the old man's real son died 10 years ago. He never knew. This warden was considered evil and extremely violent. It shocked everyone towards the end that he would even think of helping the guy out. Or give him some form of hope. Those letters were what kept the old man going. At the end, the prisoners rioted and beat the crap out of the warden. Gintoki comes to the rescue just in time. Then, once things settled down, he retired from being the warden. But, just as he was about to hobble out, Gintoki told him to see the old man. Since the old man finally earned the right based on good behavior to see people, and to get his sentence reduced. The old man knew the warden's scheme the entire time. But, I don't think he knew about his son actually being dead. The warden promised to write more letters to him. And the old man turned into a father figure for him. This was one of the few episodes that showed how wise Gintoki is. He seems like an idiot, but that's just a front. I like that about him. Without him 'meddling' with things, the warden would still be abusing prisoners and the old man would have never known the truth. And, the prisoners wouldn't have had such a positive role model.:iconchibipolandplz:

Finally got to playing my clarinet again.:sing:This time I played some more of the songs in my new solo book, a couple of Jewish tunes, some Beatles songs, and finally some Duke Ellington songs. I decided to play in a different area and way. Instead of sitting on the bed, I sat in my chair in a different place, towards the end of my bed. Sitting on the bed, made me feel like I had sloppy posture for playing. I kept sliding, too. I also added my book lamp to my stand so I can see better. Although, the new area has more light. It echoes more too. Felt kind of funny.:iconseychelles-plz:But, I think I played pretty well. Makes sense, since I had better posture, I could see, and heard myself better. Yay!:iconyayhanatamagoplz:
In Dansai Bunri no Crime Edge, a group called Gossip was introduced. They're considered an 'observation' group. They don't directly do anything to the authors. They administrate any info they can to encourage killing the Queen. Iwai and Kiri went to an orienteering camp with the rest of the school during Golden Week. Someone tried to drown Iwai. But, when she woke up she assumed she was in the high school's cabin lounge. But, there was a threatening letter left on one of the doors addressed to her. She seems to be trapped there. Earlier, Kiri was hoping Iwai would confess her love to him, but when she didn't he ran away from her. He doesn't think she shares the same feelings now. And he ended up moping around the next day. So, he wasn't with her to protect her. Not that he'd have any motivation to do so. Sad.:iconnorwayunimpressedplz:

deviantART faves: Belgium Waffles calendar Theme 86 Stuffed Pretzels Just Be Happy I did not make these! First, a pic of some really good looking Belgium waffles. Second, possible calendar with Prussia from Hetalia in the background. Nicely done. I think it would be cool as a calendar. Third, a funny comic featuring the artist's oc's. Fourth, as it says, stuffed pretzels. Really good looking. They're stuffed with banana, chocolate, and cheese. Another great thing from an artist I watch. She always posts the recipe links in the author's comments. Fifth, a really cute LOLcat. 

Sougo and Hijikata, from Gintama, directing traffic:

Fitting tribute to Toshi, from Gintama:

Another hilarious Gintama amv:

Perfect amv for the Benizakura arc in Gintama:

Yamazaki's, from Gintama, anpan (azuki/red bean bun) phase:

Gintoki gets his Valentine's Day chocolate, from Gintama: