On the Bright Side 11:42 a.m. 2003-08-30

Current Listening: My Life on a Plate by India Knight
Current Reading:Cuba Diaries: An American Housewife in Havana by Isadora Tattlin
Recipe of the Day: Chilaquiles with Chicken and Cheese, Nopales in Chipotle Sauce, Dulce de Leche (Crockpot Recipe)

The book I am listening to right now, My Life on a Plate, is screamingly funny. Go to the link above and read the sample pages. Used copies of the paperback are available on Amazon.com for $1.99 plus shipping. I, however, especially love to hear it on CD, because the narrator is British, and can get the meanings across very effectively!

While searching for an appropriate link for this book, I came up with a website for a publisher of ChickLit. "ChickLit" seems to be a United Kingdom site that focuses on literature and film and television for "chicks." It looks amusing, but there's a bit of "Cosmo Girl" about it that might lose some of you! I particularly found interesting the link to writing tips for publishing your own chick lit. My friend, Laura, should think on that.

The new recipes above are from my newly conceived Cultural Diversity Committee Newsletter. I have been named the head of our school's Cultural Diversity Committee, and although my first meeting is not until mid-September, I thought that I would hit the ground running. I also need to work on that International Book Club and I want to make a survey for the teachers at our school.

I have seen a lot of movies lately. We saw Johnny English last weekend, and The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen - both films chosen by my husband. The former was amusing in parts, but I've already forgotten it. The latter was preposterous, but I am becoming inured to preposterous films, since I will obviously nave to go see them from time to time. I am trying to draw the line at The Hulk, which is showing at the discount theatre nearby. Unlike myself, my husband doesn't like to go see films by himself...

Last night, we went to a nearby Indian Restaurant, and then we went to see Whale Rider. It was fantastic. I would love for my 11 year old niece to see it, but my husband thought that it might be too slow moving. I hope it isn't - it would be a shame. I would also like for my students to see it. As one reviewer on Yahoo Movies puts it:

"This is an excellent movie for children and adults alike. As a classroom teacher, I would highly recommend this movie to parents of children, although children in grades 3 and below may find it difficult to understand. There is not a lot of action, special effects, violence, etc., so it may not captivate the attention of children who have grown up on hollywood action films. This movie succeeds on the charisma of the young actress who plays Paikea. The supporting cast is also excellent. I am sure some will criticize this movie, and no movie is for everyone, but one would have to have a heart of stone to be unmoved by this tale. From the opening credits, the cinematography is beautiful (particularly for a film that did not have a mega-budget). This film sends strong, positive messages to children and adults alike about the importance of one's culture, believing in self, and family. It is a bit slow paced, but only in comparison to typical theatre fare. This is a wonderful chance to expose your children to great cinema with a movie that everyone can enjoy. I should add that, as this movie is about a young heroine, it sends a very positive message to young women. It also sends a strong message about women to young boys in a way they can understand and relate to, and it does so without portraying young men as idiots. A great alternative to the summer blockbusters, this is a good a movie as I have seen in months. Highly recommended for anyone, particularly families"

It is based on the book written in 1987 by Witi Ihimaera. There is also a great website that I visited last night. It had notes on the fabulous star, Keisha Castle-Hughes. It was filmed in New Zealand. What, with this and the Lord of the Rings franchise being filmed there, we will have to consider a trip to Kiwi-a-Go-Go Land!

I have not had the heart to blog for the past week because of an event that has blindsided us this week. I alluded to the situation in a past entry, and am not at liberty to say much else, because we have contacted a lawyer. If you want to know more you can e-mail me. Just last May, his mother died suddenly, and now this new trauma. I am just trying to hang in there.

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