My Favourite Disney Heroines (Happiest Place on Earth)

Geek Blogs Unite: Disney Theme - Favourite Disney Songs

I’m taking part in Geek Blogs Unite themed topic about the Happiest Place on Earth, Disney! I decided to write about my favourite Disney Heroines, and you’re probably thinking, well yeah, of course, she’s a girl. Duh… right? That’s a little bit of it. I’m a girl, and a feminist, so celebrating women is something I like to do. However, the reasoning behind this post goes a bit deeper. Last year when Carrie Fisher sadly passed away there were a lot of quotes, memories and comments going around social media. One that stuck in my head was about how she taught a whole generation of young girls that they could fight, could lead a rebellion. I realised that was completely spot on for my generation, the 80s kids, and also that Disney heroines played a bit part in it too. This seemed a fitting way to start off this post considering Leia is now officially a Disney heroine too.

Growing up I wasn’t really a girlie girl, I was a tom boy and most definitely a rebel in the making in some ways. I’m sure many people who grew up with me will be laughing at that statement; her? That goody-two-shoes a rebel? That fact is that rebellion comes in many forms, and one is the lesson Leia and other Disney heroines taught me – it’s about fighting for what you believe in, forging your own path and doing things your way. Hopefully this post will give you a glimpse into what I mean by those sentiments. ((All images courtesy of Disney Screencaps and Star Wars Screencaps, edited by me. Font used is Mademoiselle Camille.))

 

The Heroines

 

Favourite Disney Heroines - Beauty & The Beast - Belle

Belle is probably the Disney heroine I feel most connected to; she has a warm heart, she sees things in others that they don’t see, she accepts outsiders, she is an outsider and of course, her love for books. For me, Belle is to be admired in the way she handles the situation with Beast. People have many issues with their relationship, suggesting Stockholm Syndrome for example, but I’ve never really considered there to be a toxic element to their relationship. The song ‘Tale as Old as Time’ sums it up for me;

Barely even friends
Then somebody bends
Unexpectedly
Just a little change
Small to say the least
Both a little scared
Neither one prepared

Not every relationship starts with star crossed lovers meeting and knowing they’ve found their soulmate. Sometimes it takes a little work, someone has to bend, something changes. That is what I love about Belle; she’s stubborn, determined and sticks by her beliefs but isn’t afraid to make those changes, those compromises and give people a chance.

 

Favourite Disney Heroines - Hercules - Megara

 

Megara is the other Disney heroine I feel a close connection to, and her song ‘I won’t say I’m in love’ was the theme song for my angsty teenage romances, and is still a firm favourite of mine. I completely understand how she feels when she sings “If there’s a prize for rotten judgement, I guess, I’ve already won that, No man is worth the aggravation” and “I thought my heart had learned its lesson, it feels so good when you start out”. Unlike most Disney heroine’s Meg is sassy and sarcastic, she’s not your typical princess waiting for a man to sweep her off her feet or to complete her life. However, underneath that attitude is someone who’s been hurt before and is longing for someone to love her for who she is.

 

Favourite Disney Heroines - The Rescuers - Miss Bianca

 

I have always loved The Rescuers, and Miss Bianca is one of those Disney heroine’s I admired from afar and always felt that I couldn’t ever quite reach. So, why did she make this list? Because she’s a bad ass and she does it as a lady. She’s tough, she’s determined and she has the kindest soul. All she wants to do is help kids who need help, and she does it with sophistication and a heart filled with love. She sees the darkest parts of life and still keeps on fighting to bring light to the lives of children. That to me is someone to admire.

 

Favourite Disney Heroines - Mulan

Mulan has so many life lessons that I’m not sure where to begin. There’s the whole lesson about following your destiny, being able to do a man’s job in a man’s world, honouring your family and so forth. However, for me it was Mulan as an outcast that struck a chord with me. The song Reflection is a musical soul search that still feels me with emotions. I’ve never fit in anywhere, and it was only in my late 20s/early 30s that I’ve begun to feel confident and content with where I am and who I am. I think also that the lyrics appeal to me as someone who suffers from depression;

Look at me
You may think you see
Who I really am
But you’ll never know me
Every day
It’s as if I play a part
Now I see
If I wear a mask
I can fool the world
But I cannot fool my heart

 

With these lyrics in mind, when you think about everything Mulan accomplishes, her whole story can be seen as a metaphor for depression. There is light at the end of the tunnel. You can be who you see yourself as, who you really are. Is it going to be easy? No and as we see in Mulan’s case, there’s miles and many obstacles to overcome. That’s life, and Mulan is one young girl who doesn’t run from it; she faces it head on and kicks it’s ass.

 

 

Favourite Disney Heroines - Pocahontas

It could be argued that Pocahontas falling in love with John Smith and leaving for the new world is a sign of weakness, of a woman letting a man lead her life. I have always seen it differently; to me Pocahontas is a strong independent woman who explores everything she can. She is attuned to the world around her, she’s curious, she’s open minded and has an open heart, and wants to learn. For her the next step is to leave her home and travel, to learn more and see what she can learn and teach others.

 

 

Favourite Disney Heroines - The Lion King - Nala

I love Nala, she is one of my favourite parts of The Lion King and my only complaint about the film is that she doesn’t get enough screen time. Nala is not fearless, she fears, she hurts, she worries but she doesn’t hide from it. When she leaves her pride to find help, she has absolutely no idea that her childhood friend is still alive. When she finds him she’s determined to convince him to do the right thing – for himself and for their pride. She’s the strength behind the leader, the one who isn’t afraid to smack him or push him into a river if he’s being an idiot.

 

 

Favourite Disney Heroines - Star Wars - Leia

 

Oh Leia, where do I begin? Growing up I never realised how young Leia was in the movies. It was only as I grew older and read the Expanded Universe books that I realised she was only 18 in A New Hope. I chose this iconic image of her from that movie because to me it represents everything about the character. Leia doesn’t necessarily need a weapon to fight, she uses her wits, her curiosity and more importantly her voice. She sticks by what she believes in and she uses that voice to call others to arms, to inspire them to be a better person and to follow their heart and their destiny. And she is the one who taught millions of young women that they could do all this no matter what age they were, no matter where they came from.

 

Favourite Disney Heroines - Star Wars - Padme

 

I don’t hate the prequels. I agree there are some issues, however, for me as a Star Wars fan they told a story that needed to be told, and introduced us to one of my favourite Disney Heroines; Padme. Padme is incredible, and I will always wonder just how much good Padme and Leia would have accomplished if life had ever worked out differently for them. Even younger than her daughter when she was elected ruler of Naboo, Padme was placed into a position of great responsibility by a cultural tradition that believed children “possessed a form of pure, childlike wisdom that the adults lacked” ((Star Wars Wiki – Monarch of Naboo)). Unlike her daughter, she had no influential family to provide her with opportunities and it was on her own merit that she gained attention. With the weight of her planet of her shoulders, she then had the added burden of the Trade Federation’s invasion and occupation of her planet. I’ve always wondered how many of her predecessors would have cracked under that pressure, or developed mental health issues after their time in office ended.

 

Through her relationship with Anakin we get to see Padme’s concerns, her worries and anxieties about fulfilling her role and helping her people. In The Phantom Menace a young Anakin asks her questions, not knowing that he is speaking directly to the Queen of Naboo rather than one of her handmaidens. Her answers show a strength of character that continues through the prequel films and The Clone Wars series. I also admire the many weapons that she has in her arsenal and she doesn’t wait for people to help her, or do things for her. In the arena on Geonosis in Attack of the Clones she is already moving, already rescuing herself while Anakin and Obi-Wan discuss their situation. She can fight, as we often see, but she is also one of the characters in the Star Wars movies that gives the most powerful speeches and remarks. Her remark on the death of liberty still gives me chills; “So this is how liberty dies. With thunderous applause”.

 

 

Favourite Disney Heroines - Star Wars - Rey

We know hardly nothing about Rey yet. We don’t know who she is, who her parents were, where she is from. None of that matters, because what we do know is that she is a survivor, a fighter. For me Rey represents the older me, the victim of bullying, the young woman who has struggled with physical and mental illnesses and survived. There’s nothing happy about Rey’s life prior to the events of The Force Awakens. She gets up, she scavenges, makes just enough to survive and then repeats it all again the next day. It’s a dark, hopeless situation that is even more depressing than Luke’s life before he met the droids. At least Luke had family, friends and hobbies even if he was stuck on a planet on the outer rim. Rey represents that part of us that is waiting for a moment, whether it be meeting a goal we’ve been working towards, that big break or a change in our situation. Her life has completely changed, she is on a new path and we are taking those steps with her – quite literally as we wait for the new film and subsequent information to be revealed about her. Rey isn’t perfect; she is terrified, she runs from the visions, she makes excuses to avoid change. When Han talks to her about leaving Jakku, she claims she can’t leave  because she’s waiting for her family (even though deep down she knows they’re not coming back). Rey is a heroine who is real, and for me, someone who is approachable and human. I can’t wait to see where her story goes.

 

 

I hope you enjoyed reading this and got an insight into my love for Disney, and how it has been an important part of my journey from childhood, to adolescence and now into adulthood.

 

 

 

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My Goals for March

Monthly Goals: March 2017

It’s been a few months since I did one of these. January was just a crazy mess and February was all about the chest infection. Time to get back on track!

 

Blogging

  • I have blog ideas coming out of my ears right now. Seriously, so many ideas so hopefully this month will see an increase in content!
  • Commenting; yep, still an ongoing issue for me and I’m slowly getting there. People have actually had comments left by me recently *gasp*
  • Work on Blog Promo Links List.
  • Work on SEO.
  • Pinterest images for entries.
  • Media Kit? Might be able to squeeze this in this month.

 

Bullet Journal

I started a bullet journal this year to coincide with my 2017 Word of the Year Treasure (read more here).  February was supposed to be my first month of trackers and as you can imagine, the chest infection threw that out the window. That means March is the first time tracking things, so I need to keep up to date with it and stick to it.

 

Challenges

I’ve just launched The Screenshot Challenge and I’m also taking part in Magical March hosted by Kayla. I’ll be posting a selfie every day and screenshots every Sunday on my instagram.

 

Gaming

Since December I’ve not been playing WoW. With everything that happened in December I just haven’t felt like being social and WoW is my social game. So I went back to Guild Wars 2 and Chris joined me, so we’ve been playing through that together; first time for him. I’m playing it pretty leisurely so I don’t have any specific goals, I’m enjoying just floating by!

I do want to try and start the Dragon Age: Inquisition DLC’s this month though. I was focused on GW2 and have been busy, so hoping to fit it in somewhere.

 

Reading

I have been in a slump since the start of the year. I’ve gotten through some comics, and that is about it. I still haven’t finished a book I started in November, not because there is anything wrong with the book, I just have no motivation to read. It could be because I’ve been so stressed and ill, or I’ve just not had enough energy to spare. I hope to change it this month and get back on track!

 

Convention Preparation

Last year I won 6 tickets to the Sci Fi and Fantasy Warriors weekender, a weekend of geekyness and meeting guests! There’s some great guests there including Nicholas Brendon from Buffy, Chris Barrie from Red Dwarf and Gareth David Lloyd from Torchwood. There’s also a masquerade ball, something I have been wanting to go to for so long! It’s at the end of the month so I need to get a bunch of stuff prepared:

  • Discuss and plan schedule for the weekend.
  • Test hair and make up.
  • Look up DIY masques and make ours.
  • Create blog business cards and get them shipped.
  • Prepare/collect items for signings.
  • Packing list.
  • Food/Meal planning.

 

Dissertation

My dissertation had to go on the back burner a bit due to my recent illness, so this month I really need to crack on with it. I’ve had to re-evaluate the way I’m approaching my research question so it is something more plausible. I’m currently looking at a possible diagnosis of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and one important aspect of living with the condition is learning to pace myself. Hopefully by the end of the month I will have made some good head way with this!

 

 

Have you got any goals for March? Let me know!

Word of the Year 2017: Treasure

World of the Year 2017 - Treasure

The fact that is now almost a week into February tells you how well my year is going so far! January is always a messy month for me; something I’ve only just realised this year. It’s always a transitional and planning time, moving on from the old year and getting over the holidays. There’s usually travel involved as well, which comes from being in a couple residing in Scotland in which one person is from Scotland and the other is from England. This usually leads to me picking up germs from somewhere. What seems to be a chest infection took it’s time (painfully) building up before exploding over the weekend and I’m thankful that it at least seems to be moving on its own. I’m not against anti-biotics, but anyone with a bowel condition (like IBS) will tell you that sometimes they cause more aggro than they’re worth. In short, being so late with this post is annoying but not surprising. Hopefully now I’ve recognised what happens in January I can lessen the stress on myself and just go with the flow.

Going with the flow is kind of what my word of the year is all about. In December we had some horrible health news; my fiancé Chris has a very rare heart condition. One that comes with some very scary stuff. We’re still in the middle of hospital appointments right now, so we don’t know much and that alone can be even more scary. It was a wake up call, that’s for sure. We’ve been together 10 years this October, and 10 years ago before I met Chris some big changes happened in my life. I finished my first degree, I broke up from my (then) longest relationship (4 years) and moved back home to a very uncertain future. In the last decade I’ve come to realise the future always looks like that, but that was a big turning point in my life. I’ve spent that time with an amazing guy who looked after me as I healed and grew, and spent the entire time desperate to prove myself. To be worthy, to be able to say I’d accomplished great things, and most of all; striving to make myself better. Better? In what ways? Honestly, I don’t think I ever really knew. I had some healthy goals that I worked towards and reached, but otherwise I was trying to impress people who were long gone from my life or were never important anyway. As I wrote in my 30 thoughts on 30, growing older has helped put things in perspective but it was only December’s events that made me truly realise just how much I’ve been focusing on changing my life and not on what I have.

And that is how the word ‘Treasure’ came about. You can read more about what a word of the year is and it’s origins in this post from Abbey of the Arts. Last year was Evolve and I feel that even with the ups and downs 2016 did see me evolve and try new things. I’m not sure if I had a 2015 one, but 2014 was Change (you could argue that evolve is the same word, but for me they had very different meanings). But as you can see it was all about changing, transforming, making me into something else. I’m now past that stage, at least for the moment. I’m no longer cookie dough, I’m baked and I have found my various callings. I’ve found my niche with this blog, I’ve come to terms with my many disabilities and health issues and living with them, and I’ve found my calling as a Librarian. Am I complete? Probably not, and I honestly don’t think we as human beings ever are. What is important is to realise what we do have, what we have achieved and treasure all of it before it is gone. I’m done worrying about what people might think, of what they’re saying about me or whether they approve. I have a beautiful loving fiancé, two gorgeous annoying loveable furballs, supportive close family and crazy ass geeky friends who will get into all sorts of mischief with me, fangirl with me and keep me happy and sane.

I’m weird, I’m different, I’m completely geeky, I’m both introverted and extroverted.

I’m me.

Welcome to my 2017.

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My Goals for December

Monthly Goals December 2016

 

Novembers goals really helped me keep myself on a better schedule so I’m hoping this will do the same for December too!

Commenting

I managed to squeeze some comments in this month and I need to keep it up now that my blog scheduling is under control again.

 

Dissertation Prep

January marks the official  start of my dissertation after having the last four months off to rest and heal. I want to get my feet wet again and get some background research done before January comes around.

 

World of Warcraft

  • Finish my Druid class campaign.
  • Start levelling my Mage.
  • Finish Suramar quests on my Demon Hunter.
  • Get my Shadow and Holy artifacts on my priest (been delaying it as I need to record them).
  • Work on the two toy achievements: Hot Swapper and The Shortest Distance

 

Desk: Operation Make Up Storage

The next step of my desk set up is to move my make up from the bathroom and into my new desk. I’m still trying to decide whether it’s better to do that before Christmas, or afterwards. I’ve also got to work out how/where everything is going to go!

 

Product Reviews

Christmas means new stuff to review, so I want to play catch up and try to squeeze two in this month.

 

Make Up & Nail Art Tests

We’re going out for Christmas dinner so it’s the perfect excuse to dress up and go all out with make up and nail art. I want to test some new products I got for my birthday and try out some new nail art ideas. I’ll be posting them up on instagram and hopefully get some tutorials and blog posts out of it too!

 

January Reading Bingo

I first saw this over at Natalie’s Blog and as I told her, I need to do this! I have so much I want to read, especially indie/self published free books I’ve picked up and I have no idea where to start. So I want to create a bingo card, a chart of themes and keywords for picking from my collection books for January.

Any suggestions for what I could have on it? Let me know in the comments?

 

How is your December shaping up? Do you take it easier because of the holidays or is your schedule even more hectic?

 

 

 

 

 

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