Friday, October 30, 2009

Trick or Treat - How do you Take your Halloween Movies?

Here are a few suggestions for your Trick or Treat movies.

Trick: Stephen King's The Shining

By far the most scary version of the book. This is only the first few parts. The person uploading is uploading another one every few days. This was a tv movie, so it's a ton longer than Kubrick's version.

Treat: Mel Brook's Young Frankenstein

Always hilarious to watch with friends and family. I remember watching this with my parents. They love the "PUT ZE CANDLE BECK! part.

Extra treat: 15 Things I Learned from Young Frankenstein
1. Hearts and kidneys are tinkertoys!
2. Receiving a blown kiss will mess up your makeup.
3. It's pronounced Fronk-en-steen and Eye-gore, but not Froaderick.
4. Put...the candle...BACK!
5. When entering a long abandoned room, you will hear the voices of people who inhabited it long ago.
6. If it's after 5 PM you must slip the brain through the slot in the door.
7. When a monster is strangling his creator, the creator is probably trying to say "sedative".
8. Ix-nay on the otten-ray.
9. If you wear an eyepatch over a missing eye, you must continue to wear your monocle over it.
10. Introducing your breakthrough to the medical/scientific community by performing a duet of Puttin' On the Ritz is always better in theory than in practice.
11. That when a person says no matter how much he begs, do not open the door....he's probably joking.
12. When your fiancée arrives unexpectedly while you're lying naked with your beautiful blonde assistant, it's always advisable to put on a tie.
13. Don't accept soup or cigars from blind hermits.
14. It takes 15 minutes exactly to transfer half of your brain.
15. Monsters require a second clothes hamper for socks and poo-poo undies.

***I like all kinds of movies at Halloween/Samhain. These are, in my opinion, the funniest and the scariest!***

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Totally Creeped Out

Now why do I have a pic of my daughter up with a title like "Totally Creeped Out" you ask? Well, a few weeks ago, my supposedly sleeping little babe decided to freak mom out good.

I always check on her before I go to bed. And sometimes I like to use the light from my cell phone so I don't disturb her. I walked into her room. She's sound asleep. I put the phone down near her and look down on her. At the moment the faint blue light hits her and I look down at her face she opens her eyes and slightly smiles. Not in a surprised or startled way. But in a sleepy doll way. You know those dolls, you lay them down their eyes close. Stand 'em up, the eyes open. Sorta roll open.

Luckily I didn't scream. I think she was really asleep, but just one of those weird quirky things opened her eyes. But man oh man did she creep me out. I had to do one of those entire body shakes after I left to get it out of my system.

Hubs was all, "What are you doin'?" So I tell him and he tells me she's done the same thing to him a few times too. Right when he's leaning over the bed and he's like 6 inches from her head. Creeped him out too.

So here we have our little adorable baby freakin' out the parents. Let's hope it doesn't happen too many more times.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Lazy Sunday Movie: Exorcist: The Beginning

I watched Exorcist: The Beginning this weekend with my two best friends. Or rather, I fast-forwarded through the scary parts of this movie last Sunday with my friends. They aren't the biggest fans of scary movies, but I talked them into watching this one.

This prequel to the original Exorcist focuses on Father Merrin. If you've seen the original you know he's the older priest who helps exorcise Reagan. They mention in the original that he had an incident with evil in Africa many years ago. Well this movie is that story.

It starts in Africa with Merrin as an archaeologist. Apparently, he was a priest, but has turned his back on his faith. You find out later in the movie why. This is a great movie about archaeology, religion, faith, and history. As you can guess, Merrin finds his faith and vanquishes evil. Logical conclusion since he's in the original. But don't worry, I haven't given the movie away. Be aware though, this is not for the faint of heart. I was jumping at points (along with my very scared friends) and I've seen this before.
If you're a fan of the original, and possibly the numerous sequels, you'll enjoy this addition to the storyline.

Here's the soundtrack of the movie for your enjoyment.

***Note: I know it's not Sunday, but I was out of town last weekend. This week's Sunday movie will be posted on time.***

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Eddie Izzard: Comedy Royalty

I saw Eddie Izzard on Jimmy Fallon this morning. Yes, he was on a few days ago. I dvr both Jimmy and Conan. I'm way too attached to sleeping to stay up to watch their shows. Plus, this way I can fast forward through the boring commercials. I digress.

Eddie Izzard was on Jimmy Fallon to pitch his new dvd coming out next month. He also said he's run 43 marathons in 50 days. Or something crazy like that. Holy CRAP!!!!! Talk about a dedicated runner. He's been in a few major movies (that I've seen) My Girlfriend is a Superhero (As the super villian) and Oceans Twelve and Thirteen (as the tech guru they go to.) He was also on the tv show The Riches with Minnie Driver

I've been a fan of his since my friend Sunny introduced me to him via Eddie Izzard: Dress to Kill. Hilarious!

He talks about everything and anything. History, Languages, Transvestites, Snowboarding, Chiropractors, Religion, etc. I dare you to watch this and not laugh. The entire Dress to Kill dvd is available on youtube. So go ahead and watch to your hearts content.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Just Keep Swimming, Just Keep Swimming

I've never considered myself to be controlling. I've never had to have everything planned out. And I can't even begin to count how many times I went out with someone at the last minute. Even now, when it's something that deals with me and my time I'm usually pretty easy-going. Some may say fly-by-the-seat-of-my-pants. Yet when it comes to things that have to do with my daughter, I become the most detail oriented, planning-nazi around.

Especially right now. The wee one has come down with a rash. The nurse and I thought it was an allergy rash from yogurt. But yesterday she didn't have dairy and it's worse. It seems to be spreading. So when I can't make things better with a wave of my wand, I start spinning. What can I do? Where can I help? What can I control around her to make some impact.

It's times like this that make me appreciate my mother even more. I've already thanked her a few times for all she's done for me. Dealing with the colds, coughs, stress, etc. How did she do it? What would she recommend. And thankfully, she hasn't taken advantage like some moms might. She offers advice for what I ask and only that. And if I don't take it. She understands. Major cool points for that! But still, all the advice in the world can't make my little one better right away.

It's so freaking frustrating to feel this way. I try to do the best I can, but I still feel as though it's not enough. I know, I know. Just breathe. "Just keep swimming, just keep swimming."

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Lazy Sunday Movie: Under Seige

I used to be a big Steven Seagal fan. And my favorite movie of his is Under Seige. In his earlier movies he was really skinny and his later movies really fat. During Under Seige he was just right. LOL. I sound like Golidlocks here, fangirling out.

Anywho, I think this setting really played up his forumla right. He's a cook and former SEAL on the USS Missouri. He ends up fighting homegrown terrorists (Gary Busey, Tommy Lee Jones) that have taken control of the ship.

It's a good flick to watch on a lazy sunday movie.

Friday, October 16, 2009

Book Review: Undead and Unwed

While I was home sick yesterday, I decided to finish up this little gem of a book. It's nothing overly deep or complicated. Just fun, irreverent humor about being a laid-off secretary one minute and the Queen of Vampires the next.

Undead and Unwed by Mary Janice Davidson

Betsy Taylor turns 30, gets laid off, is killed by an SUV and wakes up dead all in the same week. The vampire community is convinced she's their prophesied Queen. But she's not having any of it - she's got shoes to buy! And now the undead world is being turned upside-down by a Bela Lugosi throwback and her subjects expect her to take care of it! Why didn't she read the handbook? But her would-be consort, Eric Sinclair, is (annoyingly) ever-present. If only he wasn't so tall, dark, gorgeous...and undead.

Douchebaggery Abounds

I had decided that this blog wasn't going to have any negative or ranting type of posts. However, I thought about it and realized that my tagline is what ignites your spirit. And sometimes the only way to be passionate is to get hoppin' mad about something.

Today, I witnessed the biggest douchebaggery ever. Now, I've heard stories about d-bag cops. But today I actually witnessed it. No, I didn't get pulled over. I turned off the exit of the freeway this morning. And drove over the freeway towards work. Well at the top of the freeway was this morning's speed trap. I'm sure you've all seen it. The cop just chillin there waiting for someone to speed by. No biggie. But then after you crest over the hill there's a fender bender in the far right lane. This is less than 300 feet from the cop. Does he do anything? Head over to see if everyone's okay? Nope. He just sits there like a douche and waits for someone to speed by.

So, I pass him, the accident and turn into the local Tim Horton's for my morning coffee, yogurt and donut fix. (I'm a sucker for their pumpkin spice donuts, only offered at this time of year.) And while I'm waiting to give my order I see a mini-van pull off to the side of the road in front of the restaurant. Mind you this is the same stretch of road I just came from. Well I see the cop is pulling her over. I'm thinking, did the fender bender clear up? I drive closer to the order area and nope. I can see the two vehicles still stopped in the middle of the road. So this d-bag cop not only pulled someone over for speeding, but had to pass by the accident. Again, no other cop in the area.

Really? You're more worried about a speeder than making sure people in an accident are okay? You my friend, are a major D-bag!

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Lazy Sunday Movie: Phenomenon

Hey everyone. Here's your weekly movie review. I watched Phenomenon recently.

If you haven't seen it, you should. It's about an small town kinda guy who sees a light on his birthday. It's a moving light and it knocks him out for a minute. After this, he can't sleep, reads at least 3 books a day, learns Portugese in 20 minutes and can move objects with his mind.

What happened to him? How can he do all this? Is there something he wants to teach us? What do you think of the movie?

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Think: Finances. Do: Nature walk. Love: Life

This morning I decided to pull a few cards from the deck. I tried out Tarot Dame's Charlotte Mason spread

1. Something to think about: Five of Pentacles
2. Something to do: King of Pentacles
3. Something to love: Queen of Swords

Five of Pentacles: Something to think about Man is this card spot on. I feel like the Gnome in this card. Trudging the icy and frugal financial path. Everything seems to be frozen. I've been worried about my funds for a few weeks now. It seems like there's always something. Clothes, food, mailbox, car payment, bills, etc. Everything is piling up and I'm always relieved to find that there is enough there. It just doesn't always feel like it. This card is me to a "T" right now. I have to keep an eye on money, but I shouldn't stress over it. Since I have enough. Just would like to have more (doesn't everyone) so I could start saving.

King of Pentacles: Something to do The King of Pentacles has always represented earthly wealth to me. A kind, generous man who shares his abundance. But he can also indicate a pull to nature. I do need to get out more. Enjoy the changing of the seasons. Revel in the beauty of the leaves turning from green to reds and golds.

Queen of Swords: Something to Love This card usually indicates a need to be strong, independent, and smart. (Lead with your head, not your heart.) But in this deck the card has a distinctly different feel to me. She seems to be beckoning me to her. See what I've reaped. You can have this too. You can have the emotional strength (pool of water) & natural strength (jungle and moss on her) along with the usual mental strength (swords in water). Just relax. Revel in your womanhood. She seems to be telling me to enjoy my weekend. (It is shaping up to be quite the ladies weekend: LUPEC (Ann Arbor chapter) meeting and a Bridal shower.

Hmm. Great spread. I'll be using this one again!

Deck: Fantastical Creatures by US Games

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

What is the moment worth?

What is the moment worth?

While trying to come up with a topic for today, I looked up above my computer and noticed a sign that I had put up a few years ago. A reminder if you will to pull me back to the present. What is the moment worth?

Of course, it's amazing how something in front of your face for five years can disappear. I'm too busy to notice it. But if I move it to another place, the same thing will happen. It's a part of human nature, I guess. We ignore the familiar, the day-to-day. Even weekly reminders on my phone becoming nothing more than an irritation.

So now the trick is to figure out a way to keep myself in the moment. What is the moment worth? It's a split second, minute, hour, day that you'll never get back. Think about it when you date something. When you or someone else looks on that in six months or six years, it's a record of what you did that day. On October, 7th, 2009 at approximately 8am, I wrote this blog. This is what I was contemplating.

It'll be interesting to note that in a year or so, I'll probably still be trying to come up with a way to keep the present present. Wait, right now, I'm thinking of the future, and how the past will reflect on it. Sheesh, there I go again. Not thinking of the present.

Remember this tidbit,
yesterday is history, tomorrow is a mystery, but today is a gift. That is why it is called the "present."

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Five Things I’m Inspired by Right Now

This list is a play off of many done by Domestic Witch.

1. Fall foods. See previous entry about Butternut Squash soup. I’m thinking I may make my Great-Grandma’s Chicken Noodle soup soon. (Complete with homemade noodles.)

2. Scary movies. Again, see my previous entry about Identity. It’s weird. I go through the year, not really wanting to see scary movies. But once October comes around, that’s all I really want to watch. You may want to keep an eye out for this week’s Lazy Sunday movie.

3. Halloween. This will be Lily’s first Halloween and I’d like to make it special for her. Of course, she’s not going to remember much. But photos will tell the story.

4. Friends and Family. I have a whole slew of events coming up. I’m hoping that I can squeeze in a trip to the corn maze on the 18th. Maybe I’ll make chicken noodle soup and have scary movies playing afterwards. Sort of combine the top two items and this one. Hmm. Time to call some people and talk to the hubs.

5. This blog. I know that I haven’t had this for even a week yet. But I’m really excited about it. I’m interested to see where this goes. Who will read this? Will I ever have regular readers? Will I be able to do giveaways later? Will I be able to keep this momentum going? Only time will tell.

I leave you with this question. What’s inspiring you?

Monday, October 5, 2009

Author! Author! - Neil Gaiman

Today, Ladies and Gentlemen, I get to hear Neil Gaiman speak in Toldeo, OH. I'm so excited I can't wait for 7pm to roll around. He's one of my favorite authors and is very prolific in various genres.

Though I think my all time favorite piece is an issue out of his Sandman chronicles graphic novel. Sandman #19: A Midsummer Night's Dream.

In this story, he tells us that Dream (Sandman) is Shakespeare's muse and that Dream gave him the entire story of Midsummer Night's Dream but that he had to promise to perform it whenever Dream asked. He of course agreed. And one day he's walking through the English countryside between cities and Dream appears. He asks Shakespeare to get his troupe ready for a performance. Dream will get the audience while he prepares. Come to find that the audience is the real life counterpart to the characters in the show. King Auberon, Queen Titana and Puck all appear to view the show. They of course offer their opinions and the best part (I think) is what Puck does at the end to show just what a trickster he can be.

In fact, this story is so good that it won the World Fantasy Award for short fiction in 1991. The only comic book to ever do so. After Neil won the award, some hoity toity's in the fantasy world decided that comic books shouldn't win that award ever again. So now, graphic novels/comic books are eligible for a Special Award:Professional World Fantasy Award.

If you've never read it I suggest you check it out.

And in honor of Halloween, I give you this little beauty. Neil Gaiman reading "The Graveyard Book" (a young adult novel).

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Lazy Sunday Movie: Identity

Now I'm a football widow. And now that the hubs has Sunday ticket with Direct Tv. Luckily though we've got two big tv's and during the second set of games, he likes to go upstairs and smoke a cigar while watching a game. Which leaves me with a big tv too. So I decided that every Sunday from now on, regardless of sports, to offer up a movie review and recommendation.

This week's movie is Identity

As I was going up the stair,
I met a man who wasn't there.
He wasn't there again today,
I wish, I wish he'd go away.

I've seen this a few times and I always enjoy it. It is a bit of a scary movie, half slasher, half murder mystery. I was really surprised that it didn't end up making much money at the box office. It has an all star cast:

John Cusack, Amanda Peet, Rebecca DeMorney, Ray Liota, Alfred Molina, John C. McGinley, Jake Busey and others.

A bunch of people end up at a motel in Nevada during a flash flood. People are dying off one by one. Strangely in the order or their motel room number. They all have to figure out who's killing everyone before it's too late.

They find similarities between all of the characters and other strange things happen.

I'd fill you in on more, but I don't want to give away the movie.

If anyone's seen it or wants to discuss it, please let me know!!!!

People are dying off one by one. Strangely in the order of their room numbers.

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Butternut Squash Soup

This afternoon I felt like having Butternut Squash soup for dinner. But I didn't want the pre-made stuff. I wanted homemade soup for dinner.

I found a great recipe on Food Network's site.

Butternut Squash Soup
1 butternut squash, peeled
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 onion, chopped
6 cups chicken stock
Nutmeg, Salt and Pepper

Here's the blow by blow.

First peal the squash. Then cut and cube it.

Add butter and onion in pot. Cook until translucent. *About 8 minutes. Be careful not to burn them like I almost did. Those things turn quick! A helpful tip...don't cube your squash while cooking the onions.

Then add cubed squash and chicken broth to the onions in the pot. Simmer until squash is soft. Transfer the squash to the food processor to puree. Use a slotted spoon. Add squash back to pot, stir. Add nutmeg, salt and pepper to taste. Serve.

I served mine with an Ichabod beer. Very yummy fall beer. In fact, this is my favorite beer of all time!

This recipe was perfect. I'll be repeating this one in the future.

Healthy Baby Food on a Budget

Back when I was a baby my mom made all my baby food. Whatever my parents ate, they threw in a blender and I ate it. I've heard that my favorite puree was liver and onions. I think I'd throw up if someone fed that to me today. Ugh! But nowadays you can't just take pizza and puree it. You have to integrate new foods separately in order to easily detect food allergies. Plus there's a progression of foods that you have to wait to give. Well the doc gave us the go ahead to give the little one a lot more foods. Fish, honey, peanut butter, strawberries and eggs are still out. But honestly, there's a ton of food she can eat in the meantime.

A friend of mine who made her own daughter's food gave me the best book ever!!! Top 100 Baby Purees It's a great guide to preparing baby food easily. Honestly, I haven't made a whole lot of items from the book yet, but it's a great resource.

Lily's favorite foods right now are avocados, beets, sweet potatoes, blueberries and plums. All made by yours truly. It makes me so happy to see how much she enjoys her food. And not only is it more flavorful and (to me) healthier, it's usually really cost effective. The hubs and I figure we have probably spent a fourth of what we'd have spent on pre-made baby food.

So for all you new moms or moms-to-be, keep this idea in mind. It takes no time at all to crack open a can of salt free sliced beets, dump them in a bowl and take the stick blender to them. One and a half servings for 72 cents.

Friday, October 2, 2009

All about Lavender

The other day my mom bought me some Lavender dryer sachets from Trader Joe's. I never thought to put lavender in the dryer before. But man oh man does it make laundry a little easier to take.

Though I think next time, I'd just make my own. Take a muslin or organza bag, fill with lavender, knot tightly and voila! Your own lavender dryer sachet and it's refillable, cost effective and easy to do!

Speaking of lavender. This summer I found a site that talked about Lavender Wands

(These aren't my wands, but they look really similar to mine.)

So I ordered some lavender to be shipped. Of course after I made these, my mom found fresh lavender at Trader Joe's. Hmmm. It's starting to seem as though Mom is spending way to much time there. Oh well, saves me from having to look all over the store. ;) Anyway, they're really easy to do, make your house smell wonderful and if you keep a towel over your lap or work over a desk, you can save a bunch of buds and dry them out. So you get a wand, and plenty of lavender buds for your dryer sachets! Perfect!

Tuscan Pork Roast

Okay, this little beauty of a recipe is a comfort food of mine. My mom always made it when I was growing up and I tried my hand at it for the first time last weekend. Talk about a simple recipe.

Tuscan Pork Roast

3lb Pork Loin

3 cloves minced garlic
2 tbs. Olive Oil
1 tbs. Fennel (crushed)
1 tbs. Rosemary (crumbled)
1 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. pepper

Mix rub together and rub into meat. You can let it marinate for up to 8 hours in the fridge, but it's still great if you forgo the marinating time.

Cook at 350F until the center temperature is 170. (For a 4" diameter roast it takes about 2 hours.)

Cut into 1/2 slices. 1 roast will feed 4-6 people.

So yummy!!! (And for an extra yummy factor, I doubled the rub recipe so every bite had a ton of rub on it!!!)

I served it with salad, mashed potatoes and Cabernet Sauvignon. Perfect Sunday dinner.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Less Stress on the Horizon

I'm an avid tarot fan. In fact, I'm trying to really study and work at it, so that one day, I can do it professionally. That said, I'll have to do a ton of readings!

So here goes!!!

I did a daily three card draw with the Fey tarot deck. (Sorry about the picture quality. Hopefully, I'll figure out how to put mulitple pics together better later.)

*Note: I like to combine a little of traditional readings with intuitive readings. So I may not always use a card the same way. It'll just depend on the day.

Chariot, Emperor, 4 of Wands

Chariot - I received this card a few days ago. Then it indicated to me how I saw myself before having my daughter. I was able to kick back and enjoy life as it happened. No worries for this chica.

But today, I see this card differently. I still see it as referring to me. But indicating that I'm not moving in the direction that I should be. I'm a couch potato in other words. After everything is done for the day, I typically sit in front of the boob tube and work on my cross stitch. Relaxing? Yes. Active? No.

Emperor - Today, this card reflects my husband sitting as well. We are both incredibly exhausted with his current work schedule. (Two and a half weeks of 12 hour days, with only one day off.) But he should be getting back to his normal schedule. Which will help us both. He can help out with the little one and around the house, and I won't feel so overwhelmed with everything.

****Major props to all the single moms out there!!! I really don't know how you do it!****

Four of Wands - This card typically means to kick back and enjoy a break. Enjoy the fruits of your labor. It's a tree all decked out for a party! I feel that it's reminding us that this stressful time is coming to a close, so we can enjoy the break in the insanity. However, this break seems like it's going to be short lived. Since the hubs works in retail, November will be nuts for him. Thankfully, it shouldn't be quite as stressful as this time has been, since that time a little bit of a slow period for me at work.

*Deck: Fey Tarot by Lo Scarabeo