Month: November 2016

Review: Moana

Posted November 30, 2016 by Rowena in Reviews | 6 Comments


Disney’s Moana

Starring: Auli’i Cravalho, Dwayne Johnson, Rachel House, Nichole Scherzinger
Director: Ron Clements, Don Hall, John Musker, Chris Williams
Release Date: November 23, 2016
Rating: PG
Run Time: 1:43
Movie Type: Animation, Adventure, Comedy

Moana is a daughter of the chief of her tribe, Coming from a long line of navigators she sets off for a fabled island with her hero, the demi God Maui. Along the voyage they battle the treacherous ocean and all which it hides, all the while learning what the power love between friends can accomplish.

An adventurous teenager sails out on a daring mission to save her people. During her journey, Moana meets the once-mighty demigod Maui, who guides her in her quest to become a master way-finder. Together they sail across the open ocean on an action-packed voyage, encountering enormous monsters and impossible odds. Along the way, Moana fulfills the ancient quest of her ancestors and discovers the one thing she always sought: her own identity.

When I found out that Disney was working on a Polynesian Princess movie, I was thrilled because I’m a huge fan of being Samoan. I love the Samoan culture, the language, and the dancing. The dancing is probably my very favorite part of all Polynesian floor shows. I had an amazing childhood. They say that it takes a village to raise a kid and when you’re Samoan, that is very true. I grew up with so many mother figures outside of my family and I’m grateful that the love I felt growing up has passed on to my own daughter. It’s the Samoan way. I’ve learned from the many mother and father figures I had growing up. From friends of my parents to the older folks in Church, I was showered in love and acceptance and that has always been my very favorite part of the Polynesian culture.

I was pretty curious to see how Disney would bring the Polynesian culture to life and I’m not going to lie, I was low key scared that they’d get it wrong and we’d get another Lilo and Stitch but boy am I super happy to say that they got it right this time. The thing that I loved was how all islands were represented throughout the movie. It was great fun listening to the songs and picking up the different languages represented in each song.

Moana is the daughter of the chief and ever since she was a small lass, the sea has called to her. Her father won’t let her answer the call of the sea because he fears for her safety. His experience with the sea is not a good one so he keeps a close eye on her and drills her duties to the village in her brain. Her village is slowly dying with crops going bad and no fish in their reef and her father’s answer for that is to wait it out. To hope for the best but Moana wanted to do more to help her people.

So after a talk with her grandmother, she sets off to fulfill her destiny and to restore her island home to the island it once was. Her mission is to sail past the reef (something that was forbidden by her father), find the Demi-God Maui and take him to deliver the heart of Tafiti back to where it belongs. After that is done, her island homes way of life will be restored.

Moana’s journey takes her through lots of ups and downs. I laughed, I cried a little and in the end, I absolutely loved it all. I loved the cast, the voices and just every little thing about this movie. The kids loved this movie and I adored Moana. Disney captured the heart of the Polynesian people and she gave our kids a great Disney Princess to look up to and this Polynesian woman is a happy camper. I definitely recommend this one.

Movie Trailer

My Rating


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Week in Books (43)

Posted November 28, 2016 by Rowena in Features | 6 Comments

Week in Books v2

The highlight of this week is surprisingly not Thanksgiving. It’s the return of my nephew, RJ. RJ served a two year mission for our Church and he has returned with honor. I’m so glad to see that he’s happy, healthy and safely home. He’s such a good kid, always has a smile on his face and he’s been through so much in his short life so I’m happy to see him happy. I’m just bummed that we couldn’t make it out to Colorado to see him. We’ll make up for that in January when he comes to California for Chach’s farewell.


I hope that everyone had a great weekend, cause I did and I’m ready to get back to it all this week.

Currently Reading

Managed (VIP #2) by Kristen Callihan.

It started off as a battle of wits. Me: the ordinary girl with a big mouth against Him: the sexy bastard with a big…ego.

I thought I’d hit the jackpot when I was upgraded to first class on my flight to London.

That is until HE sat next to me. Gabriel Scott: handsome as sin, cold as ice. Nothing and no one gets to him. Ever. He’s a legend in his own right, the manager of the biggest rock band in the world, and an arrogant ass who looks down his nose at me.

I thought I’d give him hell for one, long flight. I didn’t expect to like him. I didn’t expect to want him. But the biggest surprise? He wants me too. Only in a way I didn’t see coming.

If I accept his proposal, I leave myself open to falling for the one man I can’t manage. But I’m tempted to say yes. Because the real man beneath those perfect suits and that cool façade just might be the best thing that’s ever happened to me. And I just might be the only one who can melt the ice around his heart.

Let the battle begin…

I didn’t read all of the books like I planned over my long weekend but I did manage to finish Idol by Kristen Callihan and Size Matters by Alison Bliss. Both books were good but not books that I would put on my favorites shelf. They both get 3.5 out of 5 stars.


Idol by Kristen Callihan | 3.5 out of 5
Size Matters by Alison Bliss | 3.5 out of 5


The Viscount and the Vixen by Lorraine Heath

Posts You May Have Missed

11/21: Week in Books (42)
11/24: Happy Thanksgiving!

I really need to get my act together and start writing up some posts. I’m just lazy but this week is the week that I really get my shit together. For reals.

New to My Bookshelves

None. I’ve been distracted with all things planners these days. I haven’t been really looking at the books coming out, books that I want to read and all that. Surprising but I’m completely addicted to all things Happy Planner and Bullet Journals. I’m going to be doing both next year, now that I’ve got the hang of how I want to do these things. I’m excited!

New to My Review Shelf

The Hero (Sons of Texas #1) by Donna Grant

There you have it, my week in books. How did your week go?

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Happy Thanksgiving!

Posted November 24, 2016 by Rowena in Miscellaneous | 0 Comments

Happy Thanksgiving, to all of my American friends!

I hope that your days are filled with lots of family, laughter, and love. I hope that your table is filled with all of the goodies your heart desires. I’m taking the day off from the blog to spend it with my family so I’ll see you guys tomorrow.

Hugs & Pumpkin Pie,

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