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Alethea & Athena
 
22nd-Aug-2019 09:17 pm - A different sort of adventure
tadah
Today we had another adventure! This time it was so far, we had to not walk, and that is what made it an adventure. We'd been thinking we need to go to the temple, and while we do have friends to go with, sometimes we get a little overly anxious about making them make room in their schedules for us. I mean, they like to go to the temple, too, but there are times for it that are more convenient for them than for us and vice versa. And we'd never actually gone to the temple all by ourselves before, so we wanted to see what it would be like.

And so we used Uber for the second and third time ever. It made us super nervous. Even without the potential for the driver to just decide to drive off to the middle of nowhere and murder us (Uber actually has a few things in place to help prevent that), just the idea of sitting in a stranger's car for the duration of the ride is pretty terrifying. You can bet we were praying for friendly drivers.

Our first driver was very friendly and outgoing, and apparently was known for great conversation. He also seems to be working on a screenplay, and when that slipped out, I was like, "Ah, hence the Uber driving." It was fun, though, and we got to spend a lot of time on one of our favorite topics: the decline of Disney entertainment.

And then we attended a session at the temple! That was nice, and also uneventful. But we did get a lot of comments from people noticing our twinfulness.

There was some tension afterward, as we watched (via the Uber app) our driver struggle to find the pickup point. I was worried that somehow we'd gotten it wrong, so there was some running around trying to find him, and then I zoomed in on the map and discovered that we had been right all along. I can't blame him, though, because our earlier Uber driver had mentioned that people don't always wait at the actual pickup point. (We've also heard tales from our friend who drives for Uber that, for example, the pickup point for California Adventure is inside the park.)

But we made it home without incident, and our adventure was a success! So then we got some work done on a simulpub and then...we watched Miraculous. Some ruts you just don't want to get out of. (Page seems to disagree with us. She hung out with us while we were watching an episode of Dwight in Shining Armor, but I guess five times is enough for her when it comes to watching Miraculous. She didn't hang out with us when we were reading manga, either, though. (Oh yeah, we also read some more Buddha manga.))

Today I'm thankful for getting friendly Uber drivers, having a lovely session at the temple, managing to finish our translation, also having time to read manga, and the beautiful weather we had today.
21st-Aug-2019 09:06 pm - Hatsu*Haru volume 8
blush
I only just now remembered it's Review Rednesday! And we're on Hatsu*Haru this week! Woohoo! Here's our review of volume eight! Spoilers ahead!

Hatsu Haru volume 8Collapse )

This series is so sweet, you guys. And it's also the only release we have this week, so we hope everybody who's interested went and got it! So now we're all caught up on reviews again, but! Volume nine of Kiss Me at the Stroke of Midnight comes out next week, so tune in on Wednesday to read our review of it!

Today I'm thankful for another fun episode of Bring the Funny, getting to look back again on the sweetness that is Hatsu*Haru, the heat not totally melting the Hershey Gold we had for dessert, the beautiful Mardi Gras mask magnets Gaston and Alice got us in New Orleans (which we finally managed to display last week-ish), and Page once again being super adorable.
20th-Aug-2019 10:27 pm - An unconventional day
twins
Today we went to the California Adventure office. We got a late start, though, so we only managed to go on Soarin' Over California twice before we were starting to get antsy about getting to work. ...But we did see Mickey's Philharmagic inbetween, so that probably contributed. We needed to kill time before our fastpasses kicked in, and we needed to go to that side of the park as part of a sidequest we were working on.

The point is, we finally found a nice shady bench and pulled out the Chromebook to get some translating done...and were reminded that we had not charged the Chromebook. Our first thought was to see if we could find an outlet, since they leave those out for people to charge their phones, but the only one we know of is in Frontierland and we're still blocked out from Disneyland. And I'm still not entirely sure how "legal" it is to use Disneyland outlets, so instead we decided to go on the Little Mermaid ride and head home...after we went back to check on our sidequest progress and have a cookie break.

After we got home, we were too tired to do anything else. (I think we haven't been getting enough to eat, and we haven't been sleeping enough to make up for it.) So what we really wanted to do was watch Miraculous (as usual), but we decided we should do something productive anyway. Or at least something that felt more productive than watching TV. We didn't have the energy to get any "real work" done, but our trouble with Saint Young Men yesterday (that was yesterday? it feels like so much longer ago...) reminded us that at some point, and probably the sooner the better, we had better familiarize ourselves with Osamu Tezuka's Buddha manga. So we got the first volume on Book Walker, and we spent over an hour reading it! Tadah!

And after an hour reading and like 160 pages, Buddha hasn't even been born yet. It's pretty interesting, though, and our first real foray into the world of Tezuka. He definitely added things that were not part of the story where he could get away with it. There was one scene where all these kids were ganging up on another kid, and there's just randomly a morlock there. And you know it's a morlock, because it's labeled. One of the priests in a scene with a bunch of priests had a pig nose. Stuff like that. And I definitely think he appreciated Walt Disney's habit of surrounding the main characters with woodland creatures. So we'll look forward to reading more of that in the future, but our free time may be limited, because we also got some work emails today green-lighting a few things.

...So instead of doing the sensible thing and going to bed, we stay up late watching the Glaciator episode of Miraculous for the second time today. We just really like to see Cat Noir looking angstily off into the distance. They rightfully poke fun at that kind of thing in Ouran High School Host Club, but it still works.

Today I'm thankful for getting to go on Soarin' Over California again, getting to read the Buddha manga, getting to watch Glaciator again, getting to have some more of the super yummy Reese's peanut butter cup cookies from Earl of Sandwich, and having exciting new projects to work on.
19th-Aug-2019 08:44 pm - A miraculous connection
happyday
The sleepies are still hitting pretty hard today, so we're going to bed early. (...Unless we end up talking about Miraculous too much again.) The sleepies may or may not be helped by the fact that we started Phase 2 of another volume of Saint Young Men today. That series has always been brutal as far as the need for translation notes, but this particular volume is being exceptionally stubborn in regard to references that can actually be found on the internet. Or rather, it's stubbornly having references that cannot be found on the internet. We think it's a matter of Tezuka Strikes Again, but we are currently unable to confirm. Anyway, it's looking like part of our next paycheck will be devoted to Book Walker, and thence part of our free time every day will be devoted to reading Tezuka's Buddha. I'm pretty excited to read it, actually, but today has been a day of realizing how low our finances are getting...

In happier news! I may have mentioned before that the more we've been watching Miraculous, the more we've been realizing that a great many of the recurring characters sound like they're played by the same guy. There's a certain gravelly quality to his voice that acts kind of like a fingerprint, unless we're way off in our voice recognition skills. Well, thanks to season three listing voice actors by the main character they play, we've managed to identify the actor as Martial le Minoux, and tonight we looked him up on French Wikipedia!

We were especially curious about him, because not only does he play the majority of the adult male cast, he's also credited as something our limited French tells us is a voice director of some sort? Normally we'd be like, "Sure, just cast yourself as everybody!" but he does such a good job! If we're correct, he plays Jagged Stone, who is one of my favorite characters voice-wise because he speaks French with an American accent, and it's awesome.

But the exciting thing we found out is that he's the French dub voice of Sha Gojyo from our very favorite version of Saiyuki! And he's also the French dub voice of Tiger from Tiger & Bunny! And we think it's so perfect, because his main character in Miraculous is Marinette's father, and despite playing Gojyo, Hiroaki Hirata also has this warm, fatherly image in our minds. ...I don't know, maybe it's more exciting for us than for anybody else, but I'm still excited! Now we're wondering if Amazon Prime will let us watch Saiyuki in French.

Today I'm thankful for getting to watch the Dark Owl episode of Miraculous again, having at least a little editing done on this volume of Saint Young Men, Page following us around all day (and being super cute about it), getting to learn more about the cast of Miraculous, and having Hershey Gold to help us stay awake.
18th-Aug-2019 08:37 pm - Holy Traveler
twins
We got home from church today and we were pretty wiped out. I guess we stayed up just a little too late last night or something (we like talking about Miraculous), because we were ready to crash. Nevertheless, our hatred of naps won out and we persevered. Thankfully, a sweet snack energized us enough to do our Come, Follow Me studying without falling asleep. We're on the Pauline epistles now, and I don't know if it's Paul's writing style or the translation or both, but we have such a hard time focusing on it. The Book of Mormon is so much easier. We are so thankful that Nephi's soul delights in plainness.

When we finished studying, we were going to try some culinary adventures but found out we hadn't bought enough chocolate, so that's going to have to wait. So instead we watched another episode of Holy Traveler. We're still not entirely sure exactly what the purpose of the show is, actually. The first episode featured the Yad Vashem in Israel, and most of it seemed to just be the camera slowly panning over the various areas of it so the viewers could kind of experience it for themselves, which was neat. Of course there was also some explanation of things, and some interviews with people who work there.

The second episode was the story of what inspired the show to begin with. The producer had tracked down his family tree to Poland and wanted help from the woman who would become the host of the show--help finding the graves of two of his ancestors who died there. They never successfully identified them though, because when the Germans occupied Poland in WW2, they killed all the living Jews, and when the Soviets occupied Poland during the Cold War, they erased all the history, including the cemeteries. They interviewed a rabbi there and we learned some neat stuff. This was actually the episode that had us interested in watching the show to begin with, because we found out about it from looking at our own family tree--the graves they were looking for belong to our own great-great-great-great grandparents. So that was pretty cool.

This week we watched the third episode, which was about the Wise Men from the East in the Nativity story. The show visited the Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem, then went to Cologne, Germany, where there's a gigantic church that houses what people believe to be the remains of the Three Kings. But it mostly focused on the festival in Germany where children go around dressed as the Three Kings and collect donations to give to a charity that they (the children) choose--usually to help other children in need, mostly refugee children.

So based on that, the title, and the fact that the next episode will feature the Latter-day Saint Pioneers, we think Holy Traveler is about famous religious journeys? But we're still not 100% sure. Either way, it's a pretty interesting show.

Then we watched more Relative Race and cried and cried. That show really gets you, man. And now here we are attempting to get to bed early so as not to be so dead tomorrow. Will we succeed, or will we get to talking about Miraculous again? Maybe a little of both? We'll see.

Today I'm thankful for Singing Time going well, choir practice going well, making it through our Come Follow Me studies, getting to see more Holy Traveler, and getting to see more Relative Race.
17th-Aug-2019 09:24 pm - Passionate about language
blush
I have to tell you. Ever since our experiment at Anime Expo where we discovered that sugar water is a viable fuel for us, we've been on the lookout for good sugary beverages. (Don't worry; we still mostly drink water. If we have a sugary beverage, it's either a once-a-day thing, a meal replacement, or accompanying a rare fastfood meal.) Last week, we rediscovered Ocean Spray. We remembered liking Ocean Spray way back when; I guess Dad would buy it sometimes.

And the grocery store had white-cran-strawberry and white-cran-peach, which both looked really good, so we tried it out (the peach one; juice is heavy, and we walk to and from the store)! The cranberries they put in everything do have a bitterness that can be off-putting, but they do a great job of balancing it out with the other flavor and sugar. Most other juices (even the 100% juice juices) tend to have a kind of watery flavor to us, so we like to have that added sweetness. And it has to be from sugar, not corn syrup...well, we like Hawaiian Punch, so maybe corn syrup is okay, but we just like to go with sugar. Anyway, the point is, we tried the white-cran-peach juice and it was really good, so we were like, "I think we have a juice brand winner!" (We also really like Dole, but Dole has to be refrigerated all the time, while Ocean Spray can stay on a shelf until we have room in our refrigerator (as long as we don't open it).)

So we were at the juice aisle, looking at the Ocean Spray to grab another bottle of juice, thinking we might try the strawberry this time...when we saw it. Ocean Spray just released a new flavor...or the test release was just deemed successful enough to start selling it at all the grocery stores. Anyway, the point is there was a new flavor that we are 98% sure was not there last week, and can you guess, based on yesterday's entry, what that flavor was? That's right, it was cran-passion-fruit. Obviously we grabbed it immediately and put it in our cart. But man, you guys. There's a picture of a sliced-open passion fruit on the label, and it looks so gross. Like, I don't think there's ever going to be a way for us to eat un-processed passion fruit, it's so nasty. But that's okay, because we have cran passion fruit juice! ...We don't know if those flavors will work together, but we're excited to try it!

In other news, today we gave ourselves a linguistic exercise! Instead of just watching Miraculous all evening, we watched the Miraculous Christmas special! But it's different, I promise! See, the Christmas special (for those who don't know) is a musical, and we've always been curious. The English subtitles are...not quite the closed captions for the English dub...in fact, there have been a few times when we were late to change the language (it reverts back to English for every single episode), and what we heard was not exactly what we read, so maybe they really are just legit subtitles. I don't know. We also know they're not exact matches for the French, either, but when we check the French captions, we get the vibe that the captions are the original script, while the spoken dialogue represents tweaks made during recording or somewhere else along the way.

Anyway. The Christmas special is a musical, and when songs are translated into English they have to rhyme in English, because that's how we do songs in English. And that means that there had to be extra adaptation, and it couldn't be a straight translation so much. And we've always been curious to see how the English really compares to the French, so this time we watched the special with French captions. It helps us with the French, too, because they can't go changing song lyrics willy-nilly, so now what the characters are saying out loud really does match the captions! ...Then they start speaking and it's all way different again. This has us very curious about the animation process in France. (Most of the time, the differences don't seem to change the meaning very much, but sometimes the caption is fairly short and the character just keeps talking and talking and talking.)

...And I don't know if that was possible to follow at all, but the point is, we like to compare caption to spoken dialogue to French to English to whatever. And the English translation of the songs was usually pretty spot on, despite tweaks made for rhyming. There were a couple of times where I was like, "You know, it would sound better if you worded it this way..." and a couple of times where the nuance got changed. (Not that we can say for sure, since we did have to get help from our friend Google-sensei. Athena's not that good at French, and I'm even worse. But there is one song that sounds very very much like Adrien in French (from what we could tell), but seemed to lose some of the personality in English.)

After that, we went back to our regularly scheduled Miraculous programming. We just love the show so much. And we were on Despair Bear, which is such a great episode.

Today I'm thankful for Ocean Spray's brand new flavor, getting to compare all the different Miraculous scripts (although I admit we did not compare the spoken English lines), having a nice chat with Dad on the phone, Page hanging out with us during our Miraculous viewings, and it looking like Toby is going to be in 3 Below a lot more from this point on.
16th-Aug-2019 09:26 pm - Adventure!
sora
Today we had an adventure! ...It wasn't really much of an adventure, actually, but we left the house, which might count for something. They're doing another event in Wizards Unite, and since we hadn't really left the apartment in so long, I had no spell energy, and we figured getting spell energy was a good enough reason to leave the house if we went somewhere fun when we did it. And so we decided to go to Target! Tadah!

Now, the last time we'd gone to Target, they were in the middle of rearranging everything, and it was entirely discombobulating, and we were there with our friend who observed (as we passed by a place that was apparently undergoing some construction), "I wonder what they're going to put here." Out of wishful thinking and a knowledge that Target seems to have special Harry Potter licenses, I said (half-joking), "A Harry Potter store?" Well, the next morning, we came across an article online about how Target was about to release a whole new line of super awesome Harry Potter merchandise, so it seemed like my theory was correct. But this was all several weeks ago, and we hadn't been back to check. So that was our mission for today.

So we made it to Target...and there was no Harry Potter store. They were still in the middle of some serious remodeling, though, and in fact, it was even worse this time than last time. We had a few unusual things we were interested in buying (a blank greeting card, a journal...), so we spent a long time exploring the store's aisles. We also went through all the toy aisles to see if they had any Miraculous merchandise (they did not). The only Harry Potter stuff we found was the books and some toys (Lego has some pretty awesome playsets), so I don't know if they're just holding onto it until they finish remodeling (including a Harry Potter store), or if this particular store has eschewed Harry Potter merchandise because of its proximity to Disneyland. Either way, I was bummed out that I couldn't get a Ravenclaw journal or some Ravenclaw pajamas. Oh well.

We bought the things we could find (most importantly: Brita filters), and then we went to Joe's Italian Ice in the hopes it could help us feel better. And it could! You guys. There are two things that were super awesome about this particular visit. First of all, Joe's is the home to not one but two inns in Wizards Unite. So while you enjoy your Italian ice, you can check in every five minutes to get more spell energy. Best inn situation ever.

And second, one of today's flavors was passion fruit!! Woohoo!!! See, one of our other missions today was to be on the look out for passion fruit flavored things, most particularly macarons. There was a place on the way to Target that sold macarons, but it's gone now, so we couldn't check out their flavors, and we told ourselves we'd just have to hope they have passion fruit at one of the macaron stands at Disneyland, even though we think it's unlikely. You see, one of the newest episodes of Miraculous revealed that passion fruit is Adrien's favorite flavor of macaron. And you know how we are with fruit (we don't eat it...we are very gradually trying to work on that), so we don't really know what passion fruit tastes like, so we were like, "Okay, we have to find some passion fruit something so we can try it!" (Actual passion fruit is way beyond our current capabilities.)

So now, here we were at Joe's, and they had passion fruit ice! So we tried it, and we liked it! But as usual, tropical fruit continues to have an odd aftertaste, so we got it with soft serve ice cream, and together, they made a very tasty treat. And it took longer to eat, so we had that much more time to fill up our spell energy. And that was the happy ending to our slightly disappointing adventure.

Then we came home and had to do laundry, but after that, we got to read some Fire Force manga, and that was a lot of fun. We watched the latest episode of Fruits Basket, too, and I have a rant about pronouns for that one, but I don't know how long it could be, so I'm not going to post it today.

Today I'm thankful for passion fruit Italian ice, getting out of the house today, having clean laundry, at least knowing we'll (probably) get to try ladybug macarons at Disneyland (special offerings for Electrical Parade season), and getting to sleep in tomorrow.
15th-Aug-2019 09:08 pm - A reminder from Colette
tadah
We're still trying to figure out the most productive use of our time. We got a good amount of work done today, which was especially great because it involved getting started on a new series. With new series, you never know how it's going to go, so we're extremely grateful that it seems like this one isn't going to give us very much trouble.

After that, we just wanted to relax for a little bit. We're still unreasonably tired, and we're not sure if it's because of the heat, because we're still not quite getting the right amount of sleep (despite all our not working, we're still staying up late talking), or because we need to exercise or something. We briefly entertained the idea of adventures to help with that last one, but ultimately decided it was too hot, so we got some more work done instead.

And then we watched 3 Below, which has us increasingly disappointed with the main characters' failure to use all four of their arms. Like seriously, if you have four hands, why do you only have a weapon for one of them? It seems entirely inefficient. With two hands, it makes sense to have a weapon in one hand and a shield in the other, so with four hands, you'd have two more hands for another two weapons, or another weapon and shield. And the weapon these characters use can transform into a shield, which means now they have three free hands. Then they have these fight scenes where they keep struggling, and we're like, dang, if only you had more hands, you could use more weapons and be more of a threat against the badguys...oh wait.

It's actually a very very minor issue they had in Trollhunters, too, because Blinky has four arms, and usually, like with the characters in 3 Below, he uses the top two arms like a normal human being, while the bottom two hands most often either hang limp or mimic the upper arms. But why would a creature evolve four arms if they weren't going to use them? I have similar issues about portrayals of mermaids and tentacled creatures. In Monsters U, there are creatures walking on tentacles all over the place, like the tentacles are legs.

And most animated mermaids move just like humans on land. That's the most frustrating of all, because first of all, mermaids have no use for knees, so sitting with their "knees" bent makes no sense, and second of all, they're underwater, which gives them three dimensions to move around in, so why are they always just hanging in the air like they're trying to stand up? That's why I love the animation for "Part of That World" so much--Ariel really uses all the dimensions. And she doesn't bend her "knees" as much in that scene.

Anyway. Come to think of it, there are probably creatures with more than two arms in Treasure Planet. We should rewatch that.

We also read some manga! Tadah! Athena only had one chapter left in the last volume of Alive that we currently have (there's at least one more omnibus out now), while I had a whole half of Tenshi 1/2 Houteishiki, so while I finished that, she pulled out the Manga Park app and looked for something new to read. She found something called "Colette Decided to Die" by Alto Yukimura. And oh my goodness, apparently it was fate. I mean, first off, Colette is a French name, and you know we're on a major French kick right now. And second of all, it's about an overworked woman who finds herself in the underworld and decides she would like to stay there if it means she would never have to work again.

So the new reminder that overwork is super damaging helped us feel better about making the decision to spend the rest of the evening watching Miraculous again. And we have now seen the season three episodes four times each (except for Oblivio, which we watched an extra time because we love it). It really is just what we need to help us feel better about life.

Today I'm thankful for making it halfway through the first draft of a new series (especially since we started it in the second half of our workday), finding a new manga we can totally relate to, artists who make full use of evolutionary differences, having plans to go on adventures tomorrow (when it's supposed to be cooler), and having ice cream waiting for us to eat it.
14th-Aug-2019 09:15 pm - My Monster Secret volume 17
blush
It's that time again! Time to review some manga! And this week it's My Monster Secret 17! Spoilers ahead!

My Monster Secret volume 17Collapse )

Aww, what a cute series. That reminds me, we still have to write a review of volume 21.

As for this week's new releases, we have...nothing! But volume 8 of Hatsu*Haru comes out next week, so everybody get it on the day it comes out and read it, and then you can read our review of it, which we will post the following Wednesday!

Today I'm thankful for managing to hold up pretty well in the heat, having time to watch three episodes of Miraculous after we watched 3 Below, getting to watch Bring the Funny, plans being in the works to go to Harry Potter Land, and getting to remember a super cute volume of My Monster Secret.
13th-Aug-2019 09:32 pm - Down the rabbit hole
hercthinking
We were on track to go to bed a little early, but then we got distracted with news of the Netflix series that is basically Not Gilmore Girls, apparently?, and we found ourselves going down a bit of a rabbit hole. Based on all the information we've gotten, it looks like it's a Gilmore Girls AU? I have mixed feelings about Gilmore Girls anymore. We watched it back when it was on the WB and we really liked it all the way to the end because that was back when we still liked things out of loyalty. We re-watched it a few years back and still really liked it until Rory helped Dean cheat on his wife...and we still enjoyed it well enough, but dang, Rory was annoying. Then we read an article about how Rory Gilmore is literally the worst, and we were like, "Whoa, they make several excellent points." And then we watched two of the new episodes that aired on Netflix and we just couldn't even with them, so we never did watch the rest of it.

...So I think what will determine whether or not we watch this new show is if the trailer starts automatically playing in French and we hear a voice from Miraculous.

Anyway. The routine continues. This time, we used some of our free time to read more Percy Jackson. The story is getting more interesting now that they're not trying to drag out the mystery of what the heck is going on anymore. I do have to say...

That this talk of Percy Jackson just sent us down another rabbit hole. See, as I was typing that last paragraph, I was like, "And this business about Athena (the goddess) having children is nonsense, because she was a virgin...wasn't she?" So we had to go to Wikipedia to make sure, and yes, she was, but more importantly, she is also credited with the invention of a musical instrument called the aulos, and we're like, "What! Obscure musical instruments!? That's right up Athena(not the goddess)'s alley!" So we had to see if we could find some for sale, and we couldn't, but there's a company called Aulos that makes recorders, and I was like, "Well, maybe if we can get a good one, it won't sound so horrible," and it turns out they only cost like five bucks...which means there's a good chance they would sound pretty horrible without proper knowledge of how to play them. We'll have to think about it. In the meantime, Athena (not the goddess) still has her whistles and fifes and ocarinas.

And other than that, it's just been work and Miraculous. They're doing an event in Wizards Unite which may or may not motivate us to leave the apartment tomorrow, but the weather's been pretty hot, so it's tough to say. Well, that, and the fact that we're working again, and by the time we're done working the kids will be out of school, which means they might be at the park, which means we won't have it to ourselves. We'll have to think about it. ...Maybe we should walk over to Joe's for some Italian ice...hmmm...we'll think about it.

Today I'm thankful for getting to watch Weredad again, finally getting that translation turned in, amusing internet rabbit holes and the will power to not get too deep into them, obscure musical instruments, and also getting to watch Gamer 2.0 again.
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