Sunday Lists: Must-Watch Christmas Movies

must-watch christmas movie

Happy Holidays, my friends!

I present to you a list that will gather all the films that me (and my husband) deem worthy to be added into our Christmas movie marathons. We still have some classics that are to be watched
With that said, this will be updated as I see further Christmas Movies worthwhile to be added in. They are placed in alphabetical order.

A Charlie Brown Christmas (1965) Review

charlie brown christmas

The Peanuts are a staple with a lot of people and who doesn’t love Charlie Brown and his ugly Christmas tree and realizing the bigger meaning of Christmas through some unfortunate events. The Peanuts are a lovely cast and A Charlie Brown Christmas is a perfect Christmas movie to watch with the family.

A Garfield’s Christmas Special (1987) Review

a garfield christmas

I’m not sure how many have seen this one but this one was a favorite on TV. Garfield was a fave along with Odie and something about this one really touches me every year especially when Odie makes a cute gift for Garfield and when Garfield finds something for Grandma that truly warms her heart. Its definitely one for the family that we love.

Arthur Christmas (2011) Review

arthur christmas

When modern technology changes how Santa treats Christmas, his youngest son Arthur who is clumsy and only does mail writing packed with a dedicated elf and a lot of Christmas enthusiasm goes on a journey to deliver a gift that was forgotten at the workshop to the child by his own means. This animated movie is a newer selection and one that brings a ton of happiness and laughter.

Elf (2003) Review

elf 2003

Completely my husband’s pick comes Elf with Will Ferrell. While we differ on our views of the comedic value of Will Ferrell for most movies, Elf is the exception to the equation that has really grown in fondness. Its about believing in Christmas and Santa Claus. Its a little nutty but its for that craziness and awkwardness that this movie truly shines.

The Holiday (2006) Review

the holiday

The Holiday is the ultimate romantic comedy that fits so well with the Christmas season. It takes place over Christmas holidays when two women heart-broken swap houses and end up unexpectedly meeting men that change their lives. Be it as a love relationship or a father figure that tells her to see herself as the woman that she is, its a heartwarming tale full of laughter and lovely moments. Its one of my favorite romantic comedy and sometimes I even catch myself watching it outside of the holiday season because its such a feel-good story. Plus, the cast is just perfect.

Home Alone (1990) Review

Home Alone

John Hughes in the screenplay and producer seat along with 90s great child star Macauley Culkin as the iconic Kevin McAllister who gets left behind over Christmas vacation and tries his best to protect his home with traps and tricks. Its a wild ride with a lot of happiness that even the brattiest of kids have a special side to them and deep down its also about family.

How the Grinch Stole Christmas (1966) Review

how the grinch stole christmas

How the Grinch Stole Christmas ranks very high on our must-watch movies. Its one that makes the cut every single year. Its Dr. Seuss for one (and I’ve shared my love for it every opportunity I can get) and the animated version is narrated by Boris Karloff and its so awesome. And finally, You’re a Mean One, Mr. Grinch is one of my fave Christmas songs to play.

Love Actually (2003) Review

Love Actually is the stories of nine lives intertwined by love during the Christmas holiday. The cast is fantastic and each story has its own heartwarming and thoughtful moments. Its a lot of fun to watch especially the hilarious Bill Nighy moments. Plus, the late Alan Rickman is in this one and he is fantastic.

Mickey’s Christmas Carol (1983) Review

Mickey's Christmas Carol

Christmas Carol is such an iconic Christmas story by Charles Dickens and its had so many different renditions. However, the one that holds the closest to my heart is the Disney version packed with Mickey and the fellow animated cast. Its a little silly and keeps it lighthearted and is a family classic at our house.

Now with that said, if you are looking for another Christmas Carol rendition a little less of a short movie but a longer animated version, Disney’s 2009 A Christmas Carol with Jim Carey is a pretty good choice also.

Miracle on 34th Street (1947 & 1994)

Miracle on 34th Street

Does Santa actually exist? Is he just a man that plays the role incredibly well? Miracle on 34th Street is about belief in something that doesn’t have to exist, no matter how out of the world it seems. Both the 1947 and 1994 makes the cut here. The original has a certain magic to it although I still normally watch the 1994 version the most because I just love Mara Wilson.

You can see my reviews for 1947 HERE and 1994 HERE.

Polar Express (2004) Review

polar express

Tom Hanks takes on a multitude of roles here in The Polar Express and while that is a nice gimmick for this movie, its a great movie about the belief in Santa. It has a fantastic musical component to it and its visually stunning. Its a great adventure to the North Pole on the Polar Express.

The Teddy Bears Christmas  (1992)

teddy bears christmas

Its been a real difficult trip to find Teddy Bears Christmas. Luckily, some fine people have posted up one of the specials on Youtube. You can find it there if you want to check it out. Its a little dated perhaps but I loved this animated series so much and it had a moment when it was a pretty big thing on TV. At least it was for me. This one is a ton of fun about Ben, a teddy bear that goes looking to retrieve a gift, a new teddy bear, for his owner Sally. While trying to dodge the eye of the humans, he tries to get to and from the toy store before Christmas arrives.

Am I missing any of your faves? Share them in the comments below!

The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett

I’ve been subconsciously reading a few classics.  Don’t worry, Northanger Abbey is right around the corner to wrap up my Jane Austen adventures.  I’ve been enjoying revisiting books from my childhood.  The Secret Garden was one of the first Classics that I ever read.  I still have that book sitting on my shelf even though I read this one on Kindle. Something about re-reading the books we’ve read as children as an adult feels like a good thing for the most part.  I’m just hoping most books will transcend time and still have that enjoyment despite having grown up.

Let’s stop this rambling and check out The Secret Garden! 🙂

The Secret Garden
by: Frances Hodgson Burnett

The Secret Garden

Ten-year-old orphan Mary Lennox comes to live in a lonely house on the Yorkshire moors and discovers an invalid cousin and the mysteries of a locked garden.-Goodreads

 The Secret Garden takes us on a journey with Mary Lennox who travels from India, a place with a different culture to a big manor in Yorkshire where she has a new way to live.  Mary Lennox is character with a lot of room for improvement and development.  Its a story really great for kids, showing us the wonders of the outdoors and friends and going at the core of exploration and learning new things.  The culture references might seem a little prejudice as it portrays India rather negatively. However, Mary is a character the learns a lot as she realizes that Colin, a sick boy, has a similar manner to who she was when she was in India and how she wants to better herself when she has to be more independent.

 What does make The Secret Garden a fun read is the contrast of its characters.  Colin is frustrating at first and gives us a reminisce of Mary when she first arrived.  They are both stubborn but with a lot of growth as their world is increasingly expanded due to being exposed to the outside world.  The emphasis on nature and fresh being positive to a child’s growth is an important message here.  Its also about accepting shifting your views and onlook on life and the mental component of how you view yourself.  It seems like a deep message but the simple idea that still lingers here and works is that positive thoughts fuel a healthier and happier lifestyle.  It generates more energy and more smiles and laughter and sometimes, the right people will be able to bring that out as a support but also, you have to have that motivation to think and feel that way for it to really work.

The Secret Garden is magical in its own way.  The writing is a little dragged out at various parts.  Perhaps it doesn’t transcend time as well as other children’s book (like The Little Prince) but it still packs a lot of nice messages and is meaningful.  I believe that positive thinking and fresh air is an important part of bringing up a child (even if I don’t have children of my own) and this book does a fantastic job at portraying that even if it extends a little to talk about the healing power of the whole ordeal but to me, the deeper meaning here is that if we mentally become happier and thinking happier thoughts, our bodies will heal as well.  Its definitely a great little children’s novel and a fun time that made me want spring to drop by and the ground to thaw so that I could go out and do some gardening myself.

Have you read The Secret Garden? 

The Classics Adventure: Persuasion by Jane Austen

The original plan was to wrap up Persuasion by the end of 2015 but then I caught a cold the week before Christmas and then the holidays came and went and we had parties and gatherings and really more time spent cleaning and recuperating, relaxing, recharging than actually reading.  Lots of Rs going on there.  Point is: 2016 came around and I kicked into my turbo mode and finished up this novel in the beginning of the year. I’ve been having a slightly rough bit of Jane Austen especially with Mansfield Park.  So, its hard to really know what to expect in Persuasion.

by Jane Austen


Written at the end of the Napoleonic Wars, Persuasion is a tale of love, heartache and the determination of one woman as she strives to reignite a lost love. Anne Elliot is persuaded by her friends and family to reject a marriage proposal from Captain Wentworth because he lacks in fortune and rank. More than seven years later, when he returns home from the Navy, Anne realises she still has strong feelings for him, but Wentworth only appears to have eyes for a friend of Anne’s. – Goodreads

Jane Austen novels are never long but nothing quite beats the feeling of picking up Persuasion and seeing how thin it was.  I’ve never known much about the book prior to reading it but one of my girl friends claim that its her favorite.  Coming from her high recommendations, I really couldn’t wait to open it. Right from the start, you know that Austen has really matured her main character, Anne Elliott. Reading an Austen book is like stepping into a refined world of social etiquette and class, I always love that world.  I think the best way to describe it was what a character in Austenland puts it, “an idea of a simple world where love is straight-forward and lasting”. I think nothing quite matches up to that quote than Persuasion where we are watching to see if Anne Elliott and Captain Wentworth can get back together after a fallout when they were younger.  On one hand, Anne is hoping that Captain Wentworth has forgiven her while he wants to forget but knows that he will only ever love her. Its reading books like this that really ignite the romantic in me that I’ve actually been missing a lot.

Aside from the longing romance for Anne and Captain Wentworth, I think what makes Persuasion very intriguing is that within the story, there are quite a few characters. We get to learn about each of them and they each have a personality to go with it.  Some of them are made out to be really unpleasant while others are truly harmless. They create a balance that helps set the story in motion at a decent pace. Its never overwhelming or confusing.  Whether its Anne’s multiple sisters or her father or family or friends, we get a good idea of where they stand in terms of social class and their views towards the idea of marriage or relationship.  The building or should I say, rebuilding, of the relationship between Anne and Captain Wentworth are the highlight here.  They start with awkwardness and despair of not being sure how to interact to finally taking the first steps and being a little rusty to feeling like they really just want to be friends and nothing more and then finally not bearing the fact of their love for each other at the end.  While that may sound like a spoiler, it really isn’t.  Austen’s writing is well-paced and elegant enough to make sure that even if we already know the outcome, the characters and story still come to life.

Overall, Persuasion is one Austen book that I’m definitely going to re-read and be almost sure that I will feel enthralled with the experience of falling into the world of Anne and Captain Wentworth rekindling their romance.  Its one that really feels romantic and shows a forever love and that can’t be pushed away.  Its about growing up and realizing what matters most and not being influenced by those around you.  I really liked it a lot.  For me, its right up there with Pride and Prejudice.

One more Jane Austen novel after this one: Northanger Abbey.

What is your favorite Jane Austen novel? 

Disney: Pinocchio (1940)

We’re finally here with the next Disney Classic for the Baking Through Disney project. We’re here with the second Disney movie.  Please note that I am trying to do this by year of release so we’re at Pinocchio. I never watched a lot of Pinocchio and actually acquired this one in the last few years to give it a rewatch so now its my third viewing of this one.

If you happen to want to check out more on this project, feel free to drop by the page HERE.

Let’s check it out! 🙂

Pinocchio (1940)


Director: Norman Ferguson, T. Hee, Wilfred Jackson, Jack Kinney, Hamilton Luske, Bill Roberts, Ben Sharpsteen

Voice cast: Cliff Edwards, Christian Rub, Evelyn Venable, Charles Judels, Frankie Darro, Mel Blanc, Walter Catlett, Dickie Jones

A living puppet, with the help of a cricket as his conscience, must prove himself worthy to become a real boy.-IMDB

Pinocchio is a story that carries a story that sends a good message about repelling temptations, always telling truth and generally being a good boy.  To be honest, I’ve never been a fan of Pinocchio.  As a child, I only really remembered the don’t lie message from it and then when I watched it again a few years ago, I really love the pets in this one, Figaro and Cleo.  I’m a cat person, so that’s not exactly a surprise to many.  Still, watching it again, I can’t help but see that the art and colors in Pinocchio are quite refined and was definitely a step up from Snow White in the quality of the animation art-wise.  Its about the adventures of Pinocchio and how a wooden boy learns the ways of being a real boy through knowing the values of being good and earning a conscience of his own.


We can never quite talk about Disney Classics without looking at its musical value.  I believe that its hard to not know Pinocchio by its signature song at the very least, “When You Wish Upon A Star.” Its a hopeful song and one that has a nice melody.  However, it does keep the fun going with its other tunes like “I’ve Got No Strings”.  It really gets a lifting spirit to the movie with those pieces and the orchestral soundtrack behind it carries the emotions it needs to mesmerize its audience.


Pinocchio also carries a wonderful range of voice casts.  One of the most important aspects of animation, other than the art, is having a voice cast that can carry the audience into the movie and this one does a fantastic job.  Its hard to find quality animation in the modern days that quite does the same thing to help connect us with our characters.  Pinocchio is a little wooden boy who needs to learn and somehow we can get his innocence and naivety through his words.  The bad guys also have a sly tone from the fox duos to Stromboli and the temptation of the clueless boys who fall for the trap at the carnival.  Pinocchio falls into danger, seemingly learns a lesson and falls for another temptation.  And we grow with him as he conquers each one until he realizes what is important to him and channels how to be brave and goes to save Geppetto.


I might not be a huge fan of Pinocchio as a child or even now, and its definitely not one I revisit a lot, but there is no doubt that it is a masterpiece in animated films.  Its wonderful to see the step up in the art just in a few years between Snow White and Pinocchio.  The story might not be quite as immersive or heartfelt as Snow White, or as renown but it carries a message about growing up, making good choices and learning to see what are temptations and how to overcome these obstacles.  Life is dangerous and this is what Pinocchio’s adventures are about.

Have you seen Pinocchio? What do you think of it?

The baking project should be up before the end of January as I wrap up the final concept of what I want to do.
Any suggestions for what you think would make for a good baking project for Pinocchio?

The Classics Adventure: Emma by Jane Austen

Its been a while, eh? Classics takes me a little more time to read and after the misery that Mansfield Park put me through, I needed a longer break.  But we’re back and I went ahead and read Emma.  Emma was the first book I ever read of Jane Austen and it was for college (in Quebec). I read it for this Cinema and Novels themed English class, I believe.  I can’t say I’ve improved my speed at reading it but its better than taking two months to read it at least (like for Mansfield Park) 😉

Let’s check it out!

by: Jane Austen


When her former governess finds happiness as the bride of a local widower, the brilliant and beautiful Emma Woodhouse — one of Jane Austen’s immortal creations — flatters herself that she alone has secured the marriage and that she possesses a special talent for bringing lovers together. The young heiress next busies herself with finding a suitable husband for her friend and protégé, Harriet Smith, setting off an entertaining sequence of comic mishaps and misunderstanding in this sparkling comedy of English-village romance. Beneath its considerable wit, the novel is also the story of a young woman’s progress toward self-understanding. – Goodreads

Emma is an interesting novel.  My feelings towards them are a little mixed. On one hand, its probably the Jane Austen book with the biggest character development since I’ve started reading her novels.  I still have a few to go but so far, that is how I feel.  Emma is a little slow and sometimes, it takes a while to get fully immersed especially with a pretty abundant amount of characters that I tend to get a little confused for the first half.  The beginning was decent, the middle was a little slow and then the ending was fantastic.  Its hard to pinpoint how I feel because of the difference of how I felt during different part of the novel, but the ending itself really pulled me in completely.

Emma is a very well-developed character.  It kind of makes us feel like she is an endearing and truly loveable character with the best intentions but her inexperience with the world gives her false ideas of what others intentions are as they really are not as pure.  Its funny because she believes that what she is doing is good but then as I read it sometimes, Emma is kind of a self-centred brat.  Except, its not fully the case because the novel is all about Emma growing up and noticing her decisions.

Mr. Knightley is a respectable character.  He is no Mr. Darcy but he is more mature and the guiding light to Emma’s views even when she initially always goes against what he advises.  She just doesn’t see him because he just this nuisance that helps his father out a lot.  In many ways, Mr. Knightley is a character that kind of really shifts quite a bit.  He doesn’t really show much of his feelings but we do know that he has the best intentions out for Emma even if he doesn’t agree with her actions yet he is still very forgiving.

In Emma, I think the most challenging part is really seeing who each of the character’s true feelings are.  Harriet is Emma’s protege and for the most part, she suffers from not having a mind of her own while Emma pours some false fantasies in her head and control her feelings. Emma never quite knows how she feels and tries to even control her own actions.  At the same time, Frank Churchill and Jane Fairfax are pretty hidden as well. Emma really is interesting in the end because all the little secrets open up and we get the picture of who everyone is.

Its hard to say that I enjoyed Emma thoroughly but even though it was a little slow in the middle, it does have a great ending especially with Emma learning about her feelings and embracing some of the decisions she has made and reconciling with whoever she has.   Its not an easy book to read since I don’t read a lot of classics but its a lot more entertaining than Mansfield Park.  What works best here is the character development as they slowly grow, especially watching Emma grow.

Have you read Emma? What are your thoughts? 

The Classics Adventure: Mansfield Park by Jane Austen

Its taken me forever to get a book review up and that’s because I’ve been stuck on Mansfield Park for over a month.  This book and me needs to have a little chat because thanks to it, I’m now 2 books behind on my Reading Challenge.  But, with some late nights and skimming through, I finished it.  Don’t judge…I’ll explain myself in just a little bit.

Moving along with The Classics Adventure, our Jane Austen books are halfway done.  Next up will be Emma, another one that I’ve read before in college.  I’m just wondering if it’ll have a different perspective of it.  So, okay, I’ve done everything to avoid talking about this.

Let’s check out Mansfield Park! If you remember or didn’t know, I reviewed the movie Mansfield Park back in February.  You can check that out HERE! I’ll do a little comparison also.

Mansfield Park

by: Jane Austen

mansfield park

Mansfield Park is named for the magnificent, idyllic estate that is home to the wealthy Bertram family and that serves as a powerful symbol of English tradition and stability. The novel’s heroine, Fanny Price—a “poor relation” living with the Bertrams—is acutely conscious of her inferior status and yet she dares to love their son Edmund—from afar. With five marriageable young people on the premises, the peace at Mansfield cannot last. Courtships, entertainments, and intrigues throw the place into turmoil, and Fanny finds herself unwillingly competing with a dazzlingly witty and lovely rival…Unique in its moral design and its brilliant interplay of the forces of tradition and change, Mansfield Park was the first novel of Jane Austen’s maturity, and the first in which the author turned her unerring eye on the concerns of English society at a time of great upheaval. – Goodreads

I gave Mansfield Park 2 stars out of 5 in Goodreads.  Let’s just toss that out there so that it’s out of the way.  Jane Austen tosses all that romance thing out the window.  This is about society before any of the lovey-dovey things here.  Fanny Price is boring and simple. She doesn’t have an attitude and is kind of wimpy.  I mean like she walks across the lawn and gets tired and fragile.  You see what I mean? With this out of the way, Fanny Price is not an impressive heroine.

On the other hand, we have our dude.  He’s no Mr. Darcy, not by a long shot.  Edmund Betram is the second son of the Bertrams and he aims to be a religious man.  I have no problem with that.  None whatsoever.  But, Edmund is kind of boring also.  I mean, he doesn’t really understand his own feelings.  For the longest time, he was all into getting the beautiful and wealthy Mary Crawford to be his wife and right at the end, it turns out he realizes he should be with Fanny.  Is that a spoiler? You pretty much would expect it, right?

However, I do credit a book where it deserves.  Mansfield Park is about the society and it shows a more mature side of where Jane Austen is looking at.  The era where the society was less respectful of inferior status, the confusing world of relationships and the morals of what to do and what not to do.  Plus, how it differs between how women and men are treated in different situations. There’s a whole lot of stuff going on in Mansfield Park and the characters and yet, its just so hard to get engaged into the story.  For once, the beginning was still durable but as I hit the middle, I just wanted to fall asleep every time I picked up the book.

Mansfield Park is a different Jane Austen style.  The story is more reflective of the society in that era than being the focus of the romance or love rivalry with its characters.  Its a pretty dry read, mostly because our main heroine, Fanny Price and the love she’s fighting for, Edmund aren’t the typical main characters that are fun and attractive.  They are really boring and its hard to cheer them on when I’m not even sure how much I like their characters….

Now, in comparison, the 1999 movie gives Mansfield Park a nice makeover.  Fanny Price is many times more interesting as she has talent and a brain and a ton of creativity.  There’s a personality there that makes her so much more likable.  Even Edmund, although still a little boring as a character, reveals a little of his own feelings.  Plus, the Crawfords carry on a much more convincing show as Henry tries to court a ton of ladies and ends up truly desiring Fanny whereas Mary puts a lot of focus on Edmund and shows her true colors as a love rival. I feel a little like I got false hopes from the movie and maybe that’s what makes this whole reading the novel part feel so exhausting.

Have you read Mansfield Park? What did you think of it? 

P.S. I’m taking a little break from Classics and getting on with some more YA and another indie novel lined up.  It’ll be fun 🙂 I’ll even add in some comics and graphic novels!

The Classics Adventure: Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen

Are you ready to continue on the Classics Adventure?

Next up is Jane Austen’s second writing (and I’m guessing one of her most popular): Pride and Prejudice.  This is my second time reading the novel and I even took the opportunity to give Pride and Prejudice (Joe Wright version) another watch (and another for good measure).  Don’t ask me how many times I’ve seen it because if I happen to look at my shelves of movies and it catches my eye, I’ll watch it. It doesn’t help that its now on Netflix tempting me for a rewatch constantly and its just so hard to resist. You can check out my review HERE!

 Pride and Prejudice

By: Jane Austen

pride and prejudice

When Elizabeth Bennet first meets eligible bachelor Fitzwilliam Darcy, she thinks him arrogant and conceited; he is indifferent to her good looks and lively mind. When she later discovers that Darcy has involved himself in the troubled relationship between his friend Bingley and her beloved sister Jane, she is determined to dislike him more than ever. In the sparkling comedy of manners that follows, Jane Austen shows the folly of judging by first impressions and superbly evokes the friendships, gossip and snobberies of provincial middle-class life. – Goodreads

The story of Pride and Prejudice and Lizzy and Mr. Darcy are absolutely amazing.  Its pretty much the basis of most romantic comedies these days if you think about it. The chemistry of the characters and their development and growths is charming to read.  Lizzy is very similar to Mr. Darcy and right away, its obvious that they are meant for each other even though they don’t quite have great impressions of each other, more so for Lizzy than for Mr. Darcy as we come to realize. From hate to love are strong feelings and the key that first impressions can prove to be full of prejudice.

I’m going to look at this book as volumes because its split in 3 volumes.  The first one is pretty much the set-up of the premise to get to know the Bennetts, especially Lizzy and Jane and the handsome bachelors, Bingley and Darcy.  Its a little slow because not a whole lot happens but nearing the end of Volume 1, the engaging plot starts forming and we start seeing the affections and feelings grow.  The plot thickens and new characters along the way add to conflicts and misunderstandings and clarifications.

Whats great with Pride and Prejudice is that it never feels like its stopped.  There’s always something to look forward to next.  Some other adventure, physically or mentally and the characters, especially Lizzy grow and change as people should. Plus, the language is beautiful.  Jane Austen weaves some extremely lovely characters that we just can’t help but grow to love gradually. Each is crafted with so much care.  Bingley and Jane have much more naive and simple natures whereas Lizzy and Darcy are more head strong and firm on their beliefs.  While they have the supporting characters of the younger sisters, Mr. Collins and Lady de Bourg which light up our emotions a little also, along with the tiresome Mrs. Bennett and the extremely reasonable Mr. Bennett.

There isn’t really that much to say except that I loved this even more the second time and I had to raise my 4 stars to a 5 even with a slow ending.  There is extra appreciation the second time reading it because it pulled me in again.  The elegant writing, the chemistry between Lizzy and Darcy and the fact that it feels like the ultimate romantic comedy ever just makes this one of the most enjoyable reading experiences! 🙂

Have you read Pride and Prejudice? What are your thoughts? Do you like Jane Austen? Which is your favorite novel of hers?

One thing I’d like to mention: I’m glad the movie (Joe Wright version) keeps some of my favorite dialogues in the novel.  It wouldn’t be the same 🙂

Next on the reading list: 3 more indie books and after that, The Classics Adventure continues with Mansfield Park 😉

The Classics Adventure: Sense and Sensibility by Jane Austen

As you’ve noticed, its taken me a while to get The Classics Adventure started.  For one, I need to acquire the books and for me, I’ve realized that especially when it comes to reading classics, I need to hold a physical book in my hand.  Plus, I’m a little picky on which version I choose to regardless, long story short, I managed to get a copy of it while taking some time off of the indie novels to start this project.  I’m attempting to read Jane Austen novels as my first feature classics novel this year.  I’m hoping it won’t take an entire year to get 6 novels done but we never know.  In general, it takes me double the time to get through classics.

Lets stop this ramble and take a look at Sense and Sensibility!

If there are any other authors, you’d like me to check out, please feel free to suggest here or on the The Classics Adventure page up in the menu 🙂


By Jane Austen

sense and sensibility

After the death of their father, his estate was left to his nephew, John because he only had daughters and his wife left and they were unsuitable to take control of the estate.  However, he did ask John to make sure that his daughters would be cared for suitably.  Taking these terms loosely and influenced by his wife, the ladies leave for Barton Park where Marianne and Elinor, both of age of marriage but different in personality both find their romances.  Marianne meets Willoughby, a man that charms her with his handsomeness and she demonstrates her romantic/emotional sensibility where Elinor finds her interest in Edward Ferrars, and regards those feelings in a more emotionally reserved way.  However, they both end up succumbing to similar situations when they realize that both Willoughby and Ferrars are engaged to marry another girl.

I’ll just leave the synopsis there.  Writing synopsis for any book is hard but writing one for Classics and reviewing them for that matter is even harder.  I’ll try my best to do a good job of this though.  Just like reading Classics before of a different and more elegant writing style, writing a review is like picking apart a book with more meaning. The writing style itself makes it such a beautiful piece of work. The sophisticated words and the way she weaves her strong-willed ladies such a joy to read.

Right away, the book itself brings in a lot of sense and sensibility talk, however, the focus is ultimately and successfully portrayed in the two Dashwood sisters.  Elinor definitely is the strong-willed girl who holds her mind very still regardless of what happens.  She stays strong for her sister and holds true commitment to making sure her promises are held even if it means her own suffering.  For example, when the girl thats engaged to Edward, the man she loves, talks to her in secret about the secret engagement and asks her to not tell anyone until its made public.  That commitment makes Elinor so great to read because she is so honorable.

On the other hand, Elinor’s strength reflects and emphasizes on Marianne’s sensibility because she is emotionally volatile.  Knowing that Willoughby has turned her down to her face at a party, she falls ill and closes herself off.  She kind of a drama queen in a more direct way of saying things.  However, she also expresses a lot more of how being madly in love with.  She forgives and hopes easily.  Even though Willoughby has wronged her, she forgives him even without knowing the reason and expecting that he definitely has some reason for doing it.

While sculpting this relationship and drama being somewhat of a mirror in the sense of Marianne and Elinor, the other characters are written very well.  Willoughby offers some surprises for one while Edward Ferrars, a much different man also does that.   At the same time, they reflect different sorts of desire and influences they have to go through during that period.  At the same time, the first character to drive me crazy was when John Dashwood was so ridiculous as his bitchy and extremely selfish wife keeps making him reduce how much he was going to give the girls.  As the book went along, his reappearance made me a little angry because he is such a wishy-washy person that has such shallow thoughts.

Sense and Sensibility is paced a little slow for me.  There was a few parts that I felt myself drifting away in my concentration.  However, it does pick up and I ended up enjoying it around the middle straight to the end.  Its definitely a good read.  From my memory, I still remember Pride and Prejudice being just a tad better.

Also, expect the movie review soon 🙂

Thoughts on Sense and Sensibility? What did you like about it? If you didn’t like it, why didn’t you? 


What?! 4 Years Already? (ANNOUNCEMENTS)

Hey everyone!

I was originally going to do a vlog then my inner critique started kicking in and I just couldn’t film a good video and it just started getting late so I decided to write out the post instead!

Today is a VERY special day! Tranquil Dreams is 4 years old! YAY!

happy birthday

I can’t believe that its been 4 years that I’ve been writing this blog.  It is definitely one of my biggest accomplishments and one that I’m extremely proud of.  Tranquil Dreams started from my desire to fuel my life’s with a lot of positive through my passions and interests.  Its been a whole lot more than that since, I’ve lost my way and then found it all over again.  Tranquil Dreams has changed me in a really awesome way and honestly, as much as I always could say that its a lot to do with my willpower to keep at this, it wouldn’t have happened without ALL OF YOU! Everyone of you thats stopped by, liked, commented, or even just checking this space out makes me happy.

yay disny

I love you all! And I appreciate it so much! Its hard to cover everyone thats inspired me to keep Tranquil Dreams going but here are a good portion of them.  If I forgot you, its really not intentional. Remember to show them lots of love because they are absolutely in the awesome zone:

Aan Prihandaya
Alex Raphael
Books, Movies, Poetry
CC PopCulture

Cindy Bruchman
Cinema Parrot Disco
Cinematic Katzenjammer
Dan the Man’s Movie Reviews
Hard Ticket to Home Video
Isaacs Picture Conclusions
Let’s Go to the Movies
Life of this City Girl
Live & Learn
Mettel Ray
Mr. Movie’s Film Blog
Not a Punk Rocker
Parlor of Horror
Rhino’s Horror
Silver Screen Serenade
Snap Crackle Watch!
Sporadic Chronicles of a Beginner Blogger
Ten Stars or Less
The Vern’s Video Vortex
Thy Critic Man
Today I Watched a Movie
Tvor Travels
Yummy Lummy

+ many more!

Moving on to some 2015 fun business! 🙂

I’m announcing 2 long-term projects. You can see the pages up in the menu.


jane austen books

I read a lot during the year.  In 2015, I’m still doing the 40 books for Goodreads Reading Challenge. Although I check out a lot of books, I neglect reading Classics.  So this year, its to work on that. My first highlight is to read Jane Austen’s novels  plus a few that I’ve chosen.  The list will be updated in the page under Books in the menu.

If there’s any novels that I should check out, feel free to suggest!


disney poster

Concept as simple as it sounds. I’ll be watching Disney Animated Classics and Pixar.  I’ll get a review done and then I’ll make a fancy baked goods.  It could be cupcakes (which was the original concept) but it could also be cookies or cakes, depending on what I come up with to portray the movie.

More details and the list up on the menu.  Because it covers two categories of Tranquil Dreams, I gave it its own tab.

As a general update for 2015 (since I didn’t really do one before)…

2015 inspiration

2015 is all about going back to versatility.  There’s going to be a bunch of randomness.  I’m going to do random Pinterest Therapy and Music Obsessions plus show some of the “adventures”.  Generally, I’ll be covering events and exhibits around Montreal .  Right now, I’m set to do Fantasia Film Festival, Montreal Comic-con and planning to go to Toronto Comic-con.

Aside from that, movies will be trying to get a new release every month in theatres.  You can check out my 2015 Anticipated Movies HERE. Plus, I’ve been doing TV Binge posts along with movie reviews 🙂

Book reviews will resume to full book reviews (since I really missed that last year).  Aside from classics, my focus is going to be on featuring independent writers.  Movie reviews will be done as frequently as I can do them.  If I feel that some movies are rather average, I’ll group them into double features.

Thats the plan for 2015! Depending on how these plans go, maybe I’ll launch something else midyear (not sure yet). I had wanted to get a rating system on but I haven’t quite worked that out either.  Lots of ideas going on in my head but for now, this is it!



*I updated my menu and the About page.  Will be working on the sidebar soon!*