Friday, 27 January 2017

Five Things That Made Me Happy This Week #9

I don't know about you, but for me, this week has really flown by! I think it has to do with having five days off that spanned last weekend - and time off always goes by far too quickly - and then being pretty busy over the weekend. So Friday has arrived sooner than expected, but it's also payday, which is always worth a little happy dance. But Friday is also the day for five happy things...

A group of people having drinks

Five Things That Made Me Happy This Week is a weekly link-up hosted by Suzy of From the Fringe, where we share the things we've been grateful for over the last five days.

Shopping For Others

On Friday I went out shopping, there were a few things I needed to exchange and pick up, but also I needed to buy some pressies! As I've mentioned before, I absolutely love buying gifts for other people! The day before my best mate told me his girlfriend was expecting their second child, so I wanted to get them a small something to say congratulations, and then I needed to buy something for my uncle and aunt (see below). It's the best kind of shopping, looking around to find the perfect gift for someone, I get so much joy from it, even when I struggle to find something. I enjoy spending a few hours thinking of others and what they might like. So that made me really happy, especially when I found something I thought each of them would love!

A Family Gathering

It was my uncle's 60th Birthday on 4th January, and his misses' 50th Birthday the day after, so on Saturday they had a joint 110th Birthday meal! It was so awesome getting to see the family! My family are the only people left in London, so we don't really get to see other members of our family that often. My uncle and my other uncle live just outside London, so we see them and their families a little more regularly than others, but my aunt from Southampton was there, too! In all there were 15 of us - including some friends of my aunt - and it was such a great night night! We went to a little restuarant (emphasism on "little" - it was a tiny space, but they crammed as many people on tables as possible; you couldn't push your chair back without almost hitting the person directly behind you on a different table! Getting up to go to the loo was a bit of a nightmare. And they took a really long time to serve meals, which sucked a bit.) that also has entertainment! They had their in-house singers that sang while we ate, then later on, another guest singer who was there for the night. It was a lovely night, and it was great getting to see everyone again! Though I can't believe my uncle is 60 now, it just doesn't seem right.

People Being Nice to a Homeless Man

Sometimes, when the cafe at my place of work has food that won't keep to the next day, they put it in our staff room for us to take for free. There's a homeless guy I pass on my way to my bus stop, so I grabbed a couple of things to give to him. But when I offered him the food, he refused it, thanking me but saying he already has a lot of food, gesturing to the bags around him. There were five or six bags, all full of food, given to him by other people. It made me so happy to see that so many people had try to help this guy. It really lifted my heart to see that there are still kind and generous people out there.

A New Idea for My Book Blog

You guys know I also run a book blog, right? Once Upon a Bookcase, where I review mostly YA and fantasy? Well, I also run the Retellings Reading Challenge 2017 (the reason I'm mentioning this will make sense in a moment).

Last week, a publisher offered me the opportunity to be in with a chance of receiving one of ten review copies of a special edition of the original fairy tale of Beauty and the Beast by Gabrielle-Suzanne Barbot de Villeneuve, designed and illutstrated by MinaLima (the guys who signed all the graphic art for the Harry Potter movies). To be in with a chance, as there are so many book bloggers but so few copies available, we were asked to come up with our most creative ideas on how to promote the book. The cogs started turning, and suggested a few ideas, and here's one: as I run the Retellings Reading Challenge, I thought it would be interesting to look at the evolution of the story of Beauty and the Beast from the original fairy tale, to the many retellings, including the Disney animated movie and live-action movie coming out later this year, and a couple of other novel retellings, two of which came out this year.

I liked this idea so much, it's been on my mind this week, and it got me thinking that it would probably be pretty interesting to do this for the various fairy tales there are. Doing some research, I discovered that a number of fairy tales are not originally by the people we think they are - some fairy tales we think of being by the Brothers Grimm, but they are retellings themselves and not the originals; Sleeping Beauty isn't by the Brothers Grimm, but by Charles Perrault, and was originally called The Sleeping Beauty in the Wood. I find it all so fascinating! I'm really looking forward to delving deeper into fairy tales! I'm pretty excited! (I have no idea yet if my ideas were good enough to mean I get a copy of the MinaLima edition. We'll see!) I did some shopping yesterday and bought Perrault's Fairy Tales and Feminist Fairy Tales by Barbara G. Walker, and I'm also hoping to get some books on fairy tale analysis - not sure if they'll contribute to the feature, but I'm now just interested to read more into fairy tales!

Something I Can't Talk About

I know that's awful, but certain people read my blog, and there's certain things they can't know yet. All I can say is I have ideas for things (non-blog related) - but it'll be several months before I can talk about them on here, which I probably will do eventually. But it's exciting! It involves a whole lot of love, as well as time and patience and imagination!

So that's me this week! How has your week been? Do write your own blog posts, and remember to post your links in Suzy's link-up!

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  1. You can't beat a big ol' family gathering, can you?! I love getting together with everyone and just having a laugh and enjoying ourselves. I truly believe it's good for the soul!

    The fairy tales idea sounds SO interesting, it's not something I've ever thought about before but since you mentioned it, it's true that I don't really know where any of them come from! Should make for a very interesting series. Good luck on the giveaway too, I hope you get it!

    What is all of the mystery and allure in your fifth item, missy! How do expect us all to shoulder that tension?! Haha! In all seriousness, it's such a joy to have a new idea on the horizon and I hope you're savouring that feeling as much as possible. Good luck with whatever it is, I'm looking forward to hearing more about it! xx

    1. No, you can't! Family gatherings are awesome, I love them! They're definitely good for the soul! :)

      Thanks, Suzy! I've now bought some fairy tale analysis books to help with the series :) Still a bit more reading to do, but I'm excited! :

      Haha! You have a DM on Twitter explaining all! But it does make me happy! :)