Monday, November 27, 2017

Double Movie Review: Thor 3 and Justice League

Ok, so this review will have spoilers. I will do a super short summary where I will keep out the spoilers, then a full review where there could be some minor spoilers.

Super short with no spoilers: both are PG-13 and I would not recommend for any kids (quite a bit of violence and a little bit of language), but both get positive reviews from me for the age-appropriate audience. I'm not liking the Marvel trend of crude butt humor. I'm not a fan of romance and neither of these movies had much of that, so that was nice. I like light-hearted characters and both movies had these. I went in with too high of hopes for Thor and too low of hopes for Justice League.

Thor 3: I went in with high hopes for this one - it's Marvel; it's not GotG; it's classic characters Thor and Hulk and Loki. I was a little disappointed but overall still give this one a positive review. The negative is that Disney/Marvel is really on the butt humor trend that GotG2 started but thankfully was not nearly as crude (still kinda crude though). The positive is that it has some good humorous points, there is no romance, and Thor is just a really optimistic character.

Justice League: I went in with low hopes for this one - BvS really dampened my hopes for a DC movie and I just didn't see this matching up to WW. The good news is, they stayed off the crude humor trend, there is minimal romance, and added some really optimistic characters (Aquaman and Flash) which strayed away from the dark doom and gloom of MoS and BvS. I give this one a positive review. The scene with Aquaman and the lasso of truth was hilarious.

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Triple Super Movies Review - Wonder Woman, Guardians of the Galaxy 2, Spider-Man Homecoming

This summer there were a few major superhero movies that came out, and I watched them, and now I'll let you know how I feel about them.
Note - all three of these are rated PG-13, so when I say I recommend it, I mean for people 13 and older. Ratings are there for a reason. None of these are children's movies.

Here's the spoiler-free reviews:
Wonder Woman - Good! I liked it a lot.
Guardians of the Galaxy 2 - Terrible, do not recommend at all. Just don't. If you have serious FOMO, look up the IMDB summary to get the plot overview.
Spider-Man: Homecoming - Good, with caveats.

And here's the full reviews (may contain light spoilers as it's hard to talk about something without talking about it):
Wonder-Woman - I liked this a lot. It did not glorify violence in my opinion - it showed you can be ready to fight without being eager to fight. It showed that love is greater than hate. I liked how it portrayed WWI, especially since most of history wants to just ignore WWI. I highly recommend it. Granted, it is rated PG-13 so there is some objectionable material and violence (as it is WWI) but I liked most of the characters and the line between good and evil was clearly drawn.

Guardians of the Galaxy 2 - Terrible. I did not like it at all. I do not recommend it at all. I felt embarrassed in the movie theater, actually felt like there was a mix-up because the movie was so crass and objectionable that it could not be a MCU and Disney venture. I feel it should have been rated R, especially with all the terms they used for male anatomy. The trailers were completely misleading, showing a cute baby Groot dancing around rather than the violent, foul scenes that filled the movie. There was disturbing imagery during the pirate mutiny. The main characters are not good people and the secondary characters were clearly bad people, but the movie tried to make you like them? It seems that the producer was under the impression that the end justified the means; since the characters did something good then that negates the murderous, violent, angry things they've done and will keep doing. The plot was thin at best and character development was very minimal. Crude jokes were thrown all over the place and seemed like the child that keeps saying the same thing over and over and hoping you finally laugh? There was not much redeemable in this feature. The teenage Groot scene in the credits was funny? That's about it. And I'm pretty sure I've seen that scene online so yeah.

Spider-Man: Homecoming - I liked this, but there was a lot of juvenile behavior and language. Granted, it is set in high school so that is expected (sadly). I think it showed that kids need strong adults in their life who they can confide in and trust. The main characters were likable, Captain America is my favorite, and the plot was interesting. The main character had awesome (punderful) shirts from a company that I also frequent, so that was cool. Stay for the final scene at the very end of the credits. Overall, I would watch it again. But it would be nice to have a language filter (especially if you want to watch this with your parents) (why must people use male anatomy as a colloquial insult?).

Saturday, July 15, 2017

Dehydration Fix Part 2

Previously I have written about Hydralyte - I use the tablet form and it's great and travel-size and keeps me hydrated! My friend who told me about this amazing product found out that it comes in powder form and asked me to try it out. Here's my review.
So just like the tablet form, it comes in berry or orange (possibly other flavors, but these are the ones I've tried). Either flavor tastes good, but I personally prefer the orange. The packets are nice because they are single-serving (not a sleeve like the tablets) and store flat, which means you can stash one in your pocket when you go out in the sun or they can be tucked into your cooler without taking up much (barely any) space. 
Also a nice feature of the packets is that you can use them in a store-bought bottle of water (the neck of those just keep getting smaller and the tablets don't fit into most). 
In summary, I really like them and they're possibly even better than the tablet form!

Friday, April 28, 2017


I heard this statistic today - #1in4 of us will experience mental health issues.

A while ago (8 years ago) I was having a rough time. The short version is that I had my first major depressive episode and my health was declining, mainly through apathy. Did I make it through because I have an amazing family or because I have strong friends or because I have faith in God? I did (and still do) have all those things, but I wasn't reaching out. Rather, I was just going through the motions of college life while my health was shutting down. The turning point for me was one person.

There was someone (not even sure who) who saw that I was not handling things well, and they got me set up with a counselor. This person connected me to the help that I needed. Having someone to talk to, who will listen and will help you get your focus back where it should be (on God), is what helped me pull out of my spiral and get back to fully functioning.

Getting help is important, but in my case I couldn't see clearly enough to know I needed to get help. Whoever it was that got me to help is the hero in my story.

One in four people will experience mental health issues. But the other three in four can try to notice the one, and either get that one to help or be the help that that person needs. Be cognizant of yourself and of those around you.

there is
in the world.

Monday, April 10, 2017

From a Crown to a Cross

From a Crown to a Cross
A Promise, a Plan, a Plot, and a Perversion

This is the outline from a message that Tim Birx shared at Faith Bible Church on 4/9/17 (Palm Sunday evening). I have included the verses all in NKJV. The references are links to the fuller passages, if you want to do some more reading and/or get the fuller context of the passages.

The Wisemen:
Daniel 9:24-26 -“Seventy weeks are determined
For your people and for your holy city,
To finish the transgression,
To make an end of sins,
To make reconciliation for iniquity,
To bring in everlasting righteousness,
To seal up vision and prophecy,
And to anoint the Most Holy.
Know therefore and understand,
That from the going forth of the command
To restore and build Jerusalem
Until Messiah the Prince,
There shall be seven weeks and sixty-two weeks;
The street shall be built again, and the wall,
Even in troublesome times.
And after the sixty-two weeks
Messiah shall be cut off, but not for Himself;
And the people of the prince who is to come
Shall destroy the city and the sanctuary.
The end of it shall be with a flood,
And till the end of the war desolations are determined."
Matthew 2:1-2- "Now after Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judea in the days of Herod the king, behold, wise men from the East came to Jerusalem, saying, “Where is He who has been born King of the Jews? For we have seen His star in the East and have come to worship Him.”"

Luke 1:31-33 - "And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bring forth a Son, and shall call His name Jesus. He will be great, and will be called the Son of the Highest; and the Lord God will give Him the throne of His father David. And He will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of His kingdom there will be no end.”

Luke 2:29-35 - “Lord, now You are letting Your servant depart in peace,
According to Your word;
For my eyes have seen Your salvation
Which You have prepared before the face of all peoples,
A light to bring revelation to the Gentiles,
And the glory of Your people Israel.”
And Joseph and His mother marveled at those things which were spoken of Him. Then Simeon blessed them, and said to Mary His mother, “Behold, this Child is destined for the fall and rising of many in Israel, and for a sign which will be spoken against (yes, a sword will pierce through your own soul also), that the thoughts of many hearts may be revealed.”

The Shepherds: 
Luke 2:11 - "For there is born to you this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord."

John the Baptist: 
Matthew 3:1-3 - "In those days John the Baptist came preaching in the wilderness of Judea, and saying, “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand!” For this is he who was spoken of by the prophet Isaiah, saying:
“The voice of one crying in the wilderness:
‘Prepare the way of the Lord;
Make His paths straight.’”"
Matthew 11:2-3 - "And when John had heard in prison about the works of Christ, he sent two of his disciples and said to Him, “Are You the Coming One, or do we look for another?”"

Galatians 4:4-5 - "But when the fullness of the time had come, God sent forth His Son, born of a woman, born under the law, to redeem those who were under the law, that we might receive the adoption as sons."

Our Story:
John 5:14-18, 24-25 - "Afterward Jesus found him in the temple, and said to him, “See, you have been made well. Sin no more, lest a worse thing come upon you.”
The man departed and told the Jews that it was Jesus who had made him well.
For this reason the Jews persecuted Jesus, and sought to kill Him, because He had done these things on the Sabbath. But Jesus answered them, “My Father has been working until now, and I have been working.”
Therefore the Jews sought all the more to kill Him, because He not only broke the Sabbath, but also said that God was His Father, making Himself equal with God.
“Most assuredly, I say to you, he who hears My word and believes in Him who sent Me has everlasting life, and shall not come into judgment, but has passed from death into life. Most assuredly, I say to you, the hour is coming, and now is, when the dead will hear the voice of the Son of God; and those who hear will live.”"

John 7:1-4, 6, 8-15, 19-20, 25-27, 30-32, 37, 40-51, 53 - "After these things Jesus walked in Galilee; for He did not want to walk in Judea, because the Jews sought to kill Him. Now the Jews’ Feast of Tabernacles was at hand. His brothers therefore said to Him, “Depart from here and go into Judea, that Your disciples also may see the works that You are doing. For no one does anything in secret while he himself seeks to be known openly. If You do these things, show Yourself to the world.”
Then Jesus said to them, “My time has not yet come, but your time is always ready.
You go up to this feast. I am not yet going up to this feast, for My time has not yet fully come.” When He had said these things to them, He remained in Galilee.
But when His brothers had gone up, then He also went up to the feast, not openly, but as it were in secret. Then the Jews sought Him at the feast, and said, “Where is He?” And there was much complaining among the people concerning Him. Some said, “He is good”; others said, “No, on the contrary, He deceives the people.” However, no one spoke openly of Him for fear of the Jews.
Now about the middle of the feast Jesus went up into the temple and taught. And the Jews marveled, saying, “How does this Man know letters, having never studied?”
"Did not Moses give you the law, yet none of you keeps the law? Why do you seek to kill Me?”
The people answered and said, “You have a demon. Who is seeking to kill You?”
Now some of them from Jerusalem said, “Is this not He whom they seek to kill? But look! He speaks boldly, and they say nothing to Him. Do the rulers know indeed that this is truly the Christ? However, we know where this Man is from; but when the Christ comes, no one knows where He is from.”
Therefore they sought to take Him; but no one laid a hand on Him, because His hour had not yet come. And many of the people believed in Him, and said, “When the Christ comes, will He do more signs than these which this Man has done?” The Pharisees heard the crowd murmuring these things concerning Him, and the Pharisees and the chief priests sent officers to take Him.
On the last day, that great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried out, saying, “If anyone thirsts, let him come to Me and drink."
Therefore many from the crowd, when they heard this saying, said, “Truly this is the Prophet.” Others said, “This is the Christ.”
But some said, “Will the Christ come out of Galilee? Has not the Scripture said that the Christ comes from the seed of David and from the town of Bethlehem, where David was?” So there was a division among the people because of Him. Now some of them wanted to take Him, but no one laid hands on Him.
Then the officers came to the chief priests and Pharisees, who said to them, “Why have you not brought Him?”
The officers answered, “No man ever spoke like this Man!”
Then the Pharisees answered them, “Are you also deceived? Have any of the rulers or the Pharisees believed in Him? But this crowd that does not know the law is accursed.”
Nicodemus (he who came to Jesus by night, being one of them) said to them, “Does our law judge a man before it hears him and knows what he is doing?”
And everyone went to his own house."

After claiming to be the "light of the world":
John 8:19-22, 28, 30, 37-41, 44, 58-59 - "Then they said to Him, “Where is Your Father?”
Jesus answered, “You know neither Me nor My Father. If you had known Me, you would have known My Father also.”
These words Jesus spoke in the treasury, as He taught in the temple; and no one laid hands on Him, for His hour had not yet come.
Then Jesus said to them again, “I am going away, and you will seek Me, and will die in your sin. Where I go you cannot come.”
So the Jews said, “Will He kill Himself, because He says, ‘Where I go you cannot come’?”
Then Jesus said to them, “When you lift up the Son of Man, then you will know that I am He, and that I do nothing of Myself; but as My Father taught Me, I speak these things."
As He spoke these words, many believed in Him.
“I know that you are Abraham’s descendants, but you seek to kill Me, because My word has no place in you. I speak what I have seen with My Father, and you do what you have seen with your father.”
They answered and said to Him, “Abraham is our father.”
Jesus said to them, “If you were Abraham’s children, you would do the works of Abraham. But now you seek to kill Me, a Man who has told you the truth which I heard from God. Abraham did not do this. You do the deeds of your father.”
Then they said to Him, “We were not born of fornication; we have one Father—God.”
"You are of your father the devil, and the desires of your father you want to do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaks a lie, he speaks from his own resources, for he is a liar and the father of it."
Jesus said to them, “Most assuredly, I say to you, before Abraham was, I AM.”
Then they took up stones to throw at Him; but Jesus hid Himself and went out of the temple, going through the midst of them, and so passed by.

After healing the blind man:
John 9:16-18, 22-29, 33-34 - "Therefore some of the Pharisees said, “This Man is not from God, because He does not keep the Sabbath.”
Others said, “How can a man who is a sinner do such signs?” And there was a division among them.
They said to the blind man again, “What do you say about Him because He opened your eyes?”
He said, “He is a prophet.”
But the Jews did not believe concerning him, that he had been blind and received his sight, until they called the parents of him who had received his sight.
His parents said these things because they feared the Jews, for the Jews had agreed already that if anyone confessed that He was Christ, he would be put out of the synagogue. Therefore his parents said, “He is of age; ask him.”
So they again called the man who was blind, and said to him, “Give God the glory! We know that this Man is a sinner.”
He answered and said, “Whether He is a sinner or not I do not know. One thing I know: that though I was blind, now I see.”
Then they said to him again, “What did He do to you? How did He open your eyes?”
He answered them, “I told you already, and you did not listen. Why do you want to hear it again? Do you also want to become His disciples?”
Then they reviled him and said, “You are His disciple, but we are Moses’ disciples. We know that God spoke to Moses; as for this fellow, we do not know where He is from.”
"If this Man were not from God, He could do nothing.”
They answered and said to him, “You were completely born in sins, and are you teaching us?” And they cast him out."

After the "Good Shepherd" passage:
John 10:24 - "Then the Jews surrounded Him and said to Him, “How long do You keep us in doubt? If You are the Christ, tell us plainly.”"

After raising Lazarus:
John 11:45-47 - "Then many of the Jews who had come to Mary, and had seen the things Jesus did, believed in Him. But some of them went away to the Pharisees and told them the things Jesus did. Then the chief priests and the Pharisees gathered a council and said, “What shall we do? For this Man works many signs.""

The Triumphal Entry: 
John 12:1-7, 9-16, 19 - "Then, six days before the Passover, Jesus came to Bethany, where Lazarus was who had been dead, whom He had raised from the dead. There they made Him a supper; and Martha served, but Lazarus was one of those who sat at the table with Him. Then Mary took a pound of very costly oil of spikenard, anointed the feet of Jesus, and wiped His feet with her hair. And the house was filled with the fragrance of the oil.
But one of His disciples, Judas Iscariot, Simon’s son, who would betray Him, said, “Why was this fragrant oil not sold for three hundred denarii and given to the poor?” This he said, not that he cared for the poor, but because he was a thief, and had the money box; and he used to take what was put in it.
But Jesus said, “Let her alone; she has kept this for the day of My burial.”
Now a great many of the Jews knew that He was there; and they came, not for Jesus’ sake only, but that they might also see Lazarus, whom He had raised from the dead. But the chief priests plotted to put Lazarus to death also, because on account of him many of the Jews went away and believed in Jesus.
The next day a great multitude that had come to the feast, when they heard that Jesus was coming to Jerusalem, took branches of palm trees and went out to meet Him, and cried out:
‘Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord!’
The King of Israel!”
Then Jesus, when He had found a young donkey, sat on it; as it is written:
“Fear not, daughter of Zion;
Behold, your King is coming,
Sitting on a donkey’s colt.”
His disciples did not understand these things at first; but when Jesus was glorified, then they remembered that these things were written about Him and that they had done these things to Him.
The Pharisees therefore said among themselves, “You see that you are accomplishing nothing. Look, the world has gone after Him!”"
Matthew 21:9-11 - "Then the multitudes who went before and those who followed cried out, saying:
“Hosanna to the Son of David!
‘Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord!’
Hosanna in the highest!”
And when He had come into Jerusalem, all the city was moved, saying, “Who is this?”
So the multitudes said, “This is Jesus, the prophet from Nazareth of Galilee.”"

Cleansing the Temple: 
Matthew 21:12-17 - "Then Jesus went into the temple of God and drove out all those who bought and sold in the temple, and overturned the tables of the money changers and the seats of those who sold doves. And He said to them, “It is written, ‘My house shall be called a house of prayer,’ but you have made it a ‘den of thieves.’”
Then the blind and the lame came to Him in the temple, and He healed them. But when the chief priests and scribes saw the wonderful things that He did, and the children crying out in the temple and saying, “Hosanna to the Son of David!” they were indignant and said to Him, “Do You hear what these are saying?”
And Jesus said to them, “Yes. Have you never read,
‘Out of the mouth of babes and nursing infants
You have perfected praise’?”
Then He left them and went out of the city to Bethany, and He lodged there."
John 2:13-24 - "Now the Passover of the Jews was at hand, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem. And He found in the temple those who sold oxen and sheep and doves, and the money changers doing business. When He had made a whip of cords, He drove them all out of the temple, with the sheep and the oxen, and poured out the changers’ money and overturned the tables. And He said to those who sold doves, “Take these things away! Do not make My Father’s house a house of merchandise!” Then His disciples remembered that it was written, “Zeal for Your house has eaten Me up.”
So the Jews answered and said to Him, “What sign do You show to us, since You do these things?”
Jesus answered and said to them, “Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up.”
Then the Jews said, “It has taken forty-six years to build this temple, and will You raise it up in three days?”
But He was speaking of the temple of His body. Therefore, when He had risen from the dead, His disciples remembered that He had said this to them; and they believed the Scripture and the word which Jesus had said.
Now when He was in Jerusalem at the Passover, during the feast, many believed in His name when they saw the signs which He did. But Jesus did not commit Himself to them, because He knew all men,"

Following the Cleansing of the Temple:
Luke 19:47-48 - "And He was teaching daily in the temple. But the chief priests, the scribes, and the leaders of the people sought to destroy Him, and were unable to do anything; for all the people were very attentive to hear Him."
John 12:20, 23, 27, 31-40, 42-43, 13:1 - "Now there were certain Greeks among those who came up to worship at the feast.
But Jesus answered them, saying, “The hour has come that the Son of Man should be glorified.”
“Now My soul is troubled, and what shall I say? ‘Father, save Me from this hour’? But for this purpose I came to this hour.”
Now is the judgment of this world; now the ruler of this world will be cast out. And I, if I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all peoples to Myself.” This He said, signifying by what death He would die.
The people answered Him, “We have heard from the law that the Christ remains forever; and how can You say, ‘The Son of Man must be lifted up’? Who is this Son of Man?”
Then Jesus said to them, “A little while longer the light is with you. Walk while you have the light, lest darkness overtake you; he who walks in darkness does not know where he is going. While you have the light, believe in the light, that you may become sons of light.” These things Jesus spoke, and departed, and was hidden from them.
But although He had done so many signs before them, they did not believe in Him, that the word of Isaiah the prophet might be fulfilled, which he spoke:
“Lord, who has believed our report?
And to whom has the arm of the Lord been revealed?”
Therefore they could not believe, because Isaiah said again:
“He has blinded their eyes and hardened their hearts,
Lest they should see with their eyes,
Lest they should understand with their hearts and turn,
So that I should heal them.”
Nevertheless even among the rulers many believed in Him, but because of the Pharisees they did not confess Him, lest they should be put out of the synagogue; for they loved the praise of men more than the praise of God.
Now before the Feast of the Passover, when Jesus knew that His hour had come that He should depart from this world to the Father, having loved His own who were in the world, He loved them to the end."

Events surrounding the Last Supper: 
Mark 14:1 - "After two days it was the Passover and the Feast of Unleavened Bread. And the chief priests and the scribes sought how they might take Him by trickery and put Him to death."
Matthew 26:1-5, 14-16, 20-22, 25 - "Now it came to pass, when Jesus had finished all these sayings, that He said to His disciples, “You know that after two days is the Passover, and the Son of Man will be delivered up to be crucified.”
Then the chief priests, the scribes, and the elders of the people assembled at the palace of the high priest, who was called Caiaphas, and plotted to take Jesus by trickery and kill Him. But they said, “Not during the feast, lest there be an uproar among the people.”
Then one of the twelve, called Judas Iscariot, went to the chief priests and said, “What are you willing to give me if I deliver Him to you?” And they counted out to him thirty pieces of silver. So from that time he sought opportunity to betray Him.
When evening had come, He sat down with the twelve. Now as they were eating, He said, “Assuredly, I say to you, one of you will betray Me.”
And they were exceedingly sorrowful, and each of them began to say to Him, “Lord, is it I?”
Then Judas, who was betraying Him, answered and said, “Rabbi, is it I?”
He said to him, “You have said it.”"

Words spoken between Last Supper and the Garden: 
John 16:32 - "Indeed the hour is coming, yes, has now come, that you will be scattered, each to his own, and will leave Me alone. And yet I am not alone, because the Father is with Me."
John 17:1 - "Jesus spoke these words, lifted up His eyes to heaven, and said: “Father, the hour has come. Glorify Your Son, that Your Son also may glorify You,”"

In the Garden after Prayer:
Matthew 26:47, 53-57 - "And while He was still speaking, behold, Judas, one of the twelve, with a great multitude with swords and clubs, came from the chief priests and elders of the people.
“Or do you think that I cannot now pray to My Father, and He will provide Me with more than twelve legions of angels? How then could the Scriptures be fulfilled, that it must happen thus?”
In that hour Jesus said to the multitudes, “Have you come out, as against a robber, with swords and clubs to take Me? I sat daily with you, teaching in the temple, and you did not seize Me. But all this was done that the Scriptures of the prophets might be fulfilled.”
Then all the disciples forsook Him and fled.
And those who had laid hold of Jesus led Him away to Caiaphas the high priest, where the scribes and the elders were assembled."

The Trials:
John 18:28-40 - "Then they led Jesus from Caiaphas to the Praetorium, and it was early morning. But they themselves did not go into the Praetorium, lest they should be defiled, but that they might eat the Passover. Pilate then went out to them and said, “What accusation do you bring against this Man?”
They answered and said to him, “If He were not an evildoer, we would not have delivered Him up to you.”
Then Pilate said to them, “You take Him and judge Him according to your law.”
Therefore the Jews said to him, “It is not lawful for us to put anyone to death,” that the saying of Jesus might be fulfilled which He spoke, signifying by what death He would die.
Then Pilate entered the Praetorium again, called Jesus, and said to Him, “Are You the King of the Jews?”
Jesus answered him, “Are you speaking for yourself about this, or did others tell you this concerning Me?”
Pilate answered, “Am I a Jew? Your own nation and the chief priests have delivered You to me. What have You done?”
Jesus answered, “My kingdom is not of this world. If My kingdom were of this world, My servants would fight, so that I should not be delivered to the Jews; but now My kingdom is not from here.”
Pilate therefore said to Him, “Are You a king then?”
Jesus answered, “You say rightly that I am a king. For this cause I was born, and for this cause I have come into the world, that I should bear witness to the truth. Everyone who is of the truth hears My voice.”
Pilate said to Him, “What is truth?” And when he had said this, he went out again to the Jews, and said to them, “I find no fault in Him at all.
“But you have a custom that I should release someone to you at the Passover. Do you therefore want me to release to you the King of the Jews?”
Then they all cried again, saying, “Not this Man, but Barabbas!” Now Barabbas was a robber."
Matthew 27:20 - "But the chief priests and elders persuaded the multitudes that they should ask for Barabbas and destroy Jesus."

"Behold the Man" and "The King of the Jews":
John 19:1-12, 14-23 - "So then Pilate took Jesus and scourged Him. And the soldiers twisted a crown of thorns and put it on His head, and they put on Him a purple robe. Then they said, “Hail, King of the Jews!” And they struck Him with their hands.
Pilate then went out again, and said to them, “Behold, I am bringing Him out to you, that you may know that I find no fault in Him.”
Then Jesus came out, wearing the crown of thorns and the purple robe. And Pilate said to them, “Behold the Man!”
Therefore, when the chief priests and officers saw Him, they cried out, saying, “Crucify Him, crucify Him!”
Pilate said to them, “You take Him and crucify Him, for I find no fault in Him.”
The Jews answered him, “We have a law, and according to our law He ought to die, because He made Himself the Son of God.”
Therefore, when Pilate heard that saying, he was the more afraid, and went again into the Praetorium, and said to Jesus, “Where are You from?” But Jesus gave him no answer.
Then Pilate said to Him, “Are You not speaking to me? Do You not know that I have power to crucify You, and power to release You?”
Jesus answered, “You could have no power at all against Me unless it had been given you from above. Therefore the one who delivered Me to you has the greater sin.”
From then on Pilate sought to release Him, but the Jews cried out, saying, “If you let this Man go, you are not Caesar’s friend. Whoever makes himself a king speaks against Caesar.”
Now it was the Preparation Day of the Passover, and about the sixth hour. And he said to the Jews, “Behold your King!”
But they cried out, “Away with Him, away with Him! Crucify Him!”
Pilate said to them, “Shall I crucify your King?”
The chief priests answered, “We have no king but Caesar!”
Then he delivered Him to them to be crucified. So they took Jesus and led Him away.
And He, bearing His cross, went out to a place called the Place of a Skull, which is called in Hebrew, Golgotha, where they crucified Him, and two others with Him, one on either side, and Jesus in the center. Now Pilate wrote a title and put it on the cross. And the writing was:
Then many of the Jews read this title, for the place where Jesus was crucified was near the city; and it was written in Hebrew, Greek, and Latin.
Therefore the chief priests of the Jews said to Pilate, “Do not write, ‘The King of the Jews,’ but, ‘He said, “I am the King of the Jews.”’”
Pilate answered, “What I have written, I have written.”
Then the soldiers, when they had crucified Jesus, took His garments and made four parts, to each soldier a part, and also the tunic. Now the tunic was without seam, woven from the top in one piece."

The King Returns:
Revelation 19:11-16 - "Now I saw heaven opened, and behold, a white horse. And He who sat on him was called Faithful and True, and in righteousness He judges and makes war. His eyes were like a flame of fire, and on His head were many crowns. He had a name written that no one knew except Himself. He was clothed with a robe dipped in blood, and His name is called The Word of God. And the armies in heaven, clothed in fine linen, white and clean, followed Him on white horses. Now out of His mouth goes a sharp sword, that with it He should strike the nations. And He Himself will rule them with a rod of iron. He Himself treads the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God. And He has on His robe and on His thigh a name written:

Monday, February 27, 2017

Crochet: Minion

I made a minion. Actually two. These are the characters from Dreamwork's Despicable Me franchise. My niece loves them, so I tried my hand at making them.

I started off by watching this video:
Actually I started off by getting my yarn. I used five colors: brown (for the eye iris - you only need a little and you can use whatever eye color you'd like), light grey (eye), black (goggles, gloves, shoes, hair), sparkly blue (overalls), and yellow (skin). Actually the grey should be white, but I didn't have white so I used light grey. I'll call it white in my pattern because that's the optimal color but light grey looks fine.
Other things you'll need - crochet hook (obviously), yarn needle, stuffing.
It's possible that you could use Safe Eyes or something instead of the brown yarn for the pupil but I just had yarn on hand so I just used yarn.

Yellow Yarn (head):
This part follows the video pretty closely.
Make a magic circle with 6st like at the start of the video.
Put two single crochet (SC) in each stitch. It's helpful to mark where your circle starts (thanks to my awesome coworker Kathy, I have stitch markers!). Do the whole round.
Put one SC in the first stitch, then two SC in the next - repeat for the whole round.
Put one SC in the first stitch, one SC in the second stitch, then two SC in the third stitch - repeat for the whole round.
(You should be making a dome shape)
This time, put one SC in each stitch for the whole round. This should make a nice curve because we are moving from the dome to the straight sides of the Minion.
Continue putting one SC in each stitch and make the head as long as you would like. When ready, no need to cut or tie off yet - just leave the active yarn hanging.
Black yarn (hair):
Next, snip some black yarn a few inches long and tie them on top near the center of the head to make some hair. I found it easier to use longer threads then trim them if desired. I used a yarn needle to loop the thread around a stitch, then knotted it, then use the needle to loop one side around again then pulled so the knot was on the inside.

Next, I made the goggles.
White yarn (eye):
Make a magic circle like above (don't pull the center extremely tight - you will need to make a pupil) and leave a tail so you can connect to the black.

Black yarn (goggles):
Tie to the white (I made a slipknot on one, then knotted the other onto it, then pulled tight) and do one round of two SC in each (you don't want it to curve - you want a flat eye). If you're just doing one eye, then you're ready for the strap.
If you're doing two eyes, then repeat the White yarn step above but tie it off at the end and then move into the black yarn step (or join the colors however you want) and do the step finishing at the nose of the glasses.
Brown yarn (iris):
Really you can make this any color - I used brown for the contrast against the white/grey of the eye.
I cut a few inches of yarn, then tied the yarn to one side of the back of the pupil. I then loosely pulled it across the center of the eye and tied it over on that side, leaving plenty of give in the center (you'll see why). I then went to the front of the eye and used the hook to pull the brown yarn through. Play with it to make it pop through however much you'd like. Trim any ends if needed.

Black yarn (goggle strap): 
With one eye, you don't need to tie off - just move right into the strap. With two eyes, you finish at the 'nose' of the goggles so you'll need to tie off and then stitch in as the 'ear' of the goggles.
Once you place your goggles where you want them on the face, start slip stitching all the way around the head until you join with the other side.
I then slip stitch around the goggles to attach them to the face just for extra security (and so they wouldn't peel up or down), or you can use the yarn needle and tack down the edges of the goggles.

White (mouth):
I snipped a length of white and used a yarn needle to make a smile.

Blue (overalls):
I connected the blue to the yellow on the back of the Minion, so finish your yellow to the back and then join the blue (slip knot one, knot the other into the slip knot, pull tight, or use whatever joining you prefer). SC into each stitch at you want to continue the straight sides of the Minion. Go for however many rounds you'd like - closing off the bottom does not add much length so make the torso however long you'd like. Once you're at your desired length, leave the blue yarn hanging (don't cut off).

Black (gloves): 
I made and attached the arms at this point so I still had access to the inside of the Minion.
Make a magic circle with 6st like earlier, but only put one SC in each (makes it turn down right away).
Do one round for the gloves, then....

Yellow (arms):
Join the yellow to the black and continue doing SC rounds until the arm is the desired length (8 rounds worked for me).
I then attached the arm by slip stitching into the torso all the way around the arm base. You could probably just stitch it on if that's easier. Be careful where you attach the arm - don't put it too far back on the sides or the arms will point backwards rather than forwards.
**NOTE** I did not stuff the arms (or legs). They are quite thin and I wanted them to be maximally flexible. You could stuff them if you want a more rigid shape.

Then the fun part - make another glove/arm combo that's the same size as the first one and attach it to the other side.
Stuffing time!
As previously noted, I did not stuff the limbs but I did stuff the body! I used yarn scraps for one Minion and actually stuffing for the other - use whatever you want to stuff it. It's a fairly open shape, so no need to poke it into crevices or anything like that.

Blue (overalls):
Close off the torso by repeating the head steps in reverse order like so:
Mark the start so you know when a round is done.
Put one SC in the first stitch, one SC in the second stitch, then skip the third stitch - repeat for the whole round.
Put one SC in the first stitch, then skip the next - repeat this round and round until the loop is closed - I finished with a slip stitch and then knotted and wove in the end.

Black (shoes):
Repeat the black gloves steps.

Blue (legs):
Repeat the yellow arms steps. Attach the legs to the body in a similar fashion, but this time you won't have access to the inside of the Minion since this attaches to the closing.

More fun times - make another shoe/leg the same size and attach it.

Blue (pocket - OPTIONAL):
You can make a pocket on the front of the overalls - it will be tiny and slightly frustrating. I stitched in, then chained about three, then stitched in to make the top of the pocket, then went down and repeated but joined with the previous row, and then the final row was joined to the torso and the previous row. I might try just stitching a pocket separately then adding it on - would probably be easier.

Weave in any ends and your Minion should be good to go!