My Twenty-Twenty, a Reflection in 12 chapters

It’s been a long and strange year. For everyone.

Here’s a reminder to myself of some of the stuff that happened.


I did my Black and White Food Challenge.

( )


I got a bug up my butt and did a major rearrangement of my place…

…right before moving…


We created and accomplished The 120 Dumpling Challenge, in 1 hour.


Took the tortoise for a walk… ended up pulling up a chair and drinking a beer…


Mari and Little Mo came into my life.


I managed to pay off all my credit debt!


My beloved chest freezer, Body-Stasher, bit the big one. I had to tearfully throw away so much meat and fish… But a cheritable co-worker donated to the Restock Rose’s Freezer fund.


I finally applied to Grad School!

…and didn’t get accepted…

Stellar essay here:


New (used) car happened!


I survived the One Chip Challenge. Despite it being booby trapped with a stale chip…


I held a wee hummingbird that required rescue. (Actually happened twice. Poor buggers keep getting stuck in my stoop.)


I journeyed around the world in a ship of Spaghetti.

( )


And survived…

Joyeux Noel

Everybody has their Christmas movies. White Christmas, A Christmas Story, Die Hard… And while I don’t watch this every Christmas, I still love this story best.
Not-so-secret secret confession: I love War movies. I don’t know why, but I always have. And while this one is entirely opposite of what one would envision a war movie to be about, I still love it just as much.
I had read about how war strips a man of their humanity. Their compassion and empathy. They are treated as robots in a machine, and are rewired to be as such. Kill the enemy, Win the War.
The beginning of this movie shows children from Germany, France, and Scotland, all reciting mantras teaching them who the “enemy” was, who must be killed. The movie goes on to show the three sides fighting against each other, as you would expect of a war movie.
But Christmas of 1914 was different. The three sides declaired a cease fire and spent Christmas together. Sharing drinks, singing songs, showing pictures, exchanging addresses and promises to keep in touch.
The War, the World, looms just outside their trenches, but for a short time, they all laid down their guns and became men again. And it is a story that warms my heart every time. Men who can open their eyes and see each other as equal, as real, flesh, blood, and heart.
And as of late, it is the sort of story we need. A reminder of what it really means to be human. Not the hatred, and anger, and violence. But the openness, and compassion, and caring. And Soccer.
This is my Christmas story of choice.
Joyeux Noel.


Ohmygosh! I adored this! I have already always loved the Disney version of Mulan, but this more dramatic live-action version was lovely.
I am sad that filming in certain locations despite the Chinese treatment of the Uyghurs, raised such controversy for the film. It was the locations that really created the film for me. I don’t want that to take away from how important this film is. It casts an American spotlight on the Asian population and culture. And, while initially based off a very short poem, the story shows just how highly the Chinese, and most Asian cultures, held ideas such as Honour, Respect, and Duty. These are ideas that many Americans hold loosely in their hands. But the Chinese gripped onto them so tightly. To the point that dishonouring your family was equal to exile.
But to me, the thing that I have always loved about this story, was the strength it gave its main character. Mulan, a woman whos only job in life is to be lady-like, find a good match, and maintain family honour by being obedient. That is not the way for Mulan. She rises up, despite EVERYTHING stacked against her, and proves she is just as strong, if not stronger, than any man.
(Trying very hard not to think too much about the Chinese Opera version of The Ballad of Mulan I saw long ago, in which, Mulan’s love interest perishes, and she decides to weep at his grave for the rest of her days…)
This is not “the Disney version of Mulan.” This is a Chinese movie, about a woman named Mulan. Don’t expect a sing-a-long.