4.30.2012

Movie Review Monday

Friday night was Fright Night at the Friday house and we watched Let The Right One In. I don't know if you remember, but I read this book a while back based on the good reviews this movie had gotten. I would say, if I had to choose, the book would win over the movie hands down. Husband and I found the film itself to be quite slow and had I not read the book, I would not have had much of a clue as to what was going on. I will say, however, that the special effects at the moments of horror were excellent. I definitely cheered when I saw a severed head sink to the bottom of the pool and when Eli began to bleed after crossing the threshold of Oskar's home without being invited in. I'm not sure I need to see the American version. And just between you and me? Always go with subtitles over dubbed English. So weird.

Yesterday, I decided to watch some infinitely lighter fare and watched my DVR'd version of Being Elmo: A Puppeteer's Journey that PBS had run. I'm not even going to mince words here: this is the best documentary I have ever seen. Kevin Clash (Elmo's Handler) started off as a young boy making puppets out of the felt that lines his father's raincoat. Thankfully, rather than punish him, his parents saw his potential and encouraged his gift. He was inspired by Jim Henson and went on to work for him and to become basically the head honcho over at Sesame Street. I smiled from start to finish, crying often as he relived his journey for us. This man is amazing and has a magical gift that I hope CGI never kills. I recommend this to anyone that has even the slightest love of Muppetry. It completed me.

4.27.2012

Bedazzled Haiku Friday

My Bedazzled Jeans
Once belonged to BFF
Didn't quite fit me
***
That was at first though
I got them last month you see
But things have changed now
***
Put them on today
Zippered and buttoned them up
I am almost there!

4.26.2012

The Good, The Bad & The Ugly

THE GOOD
  • I am down 8 pounds. Clothed I weigh 213 so I am taking that as having achieved my 210 by my birthday goal.
  • I have been to Curves 15 times so far this month and next month I'm signing up for a year.
  • I've really been sticking to my work week diet quite well. I'm used to the oatmeal for breakfast and salads at lunch and fruits and veggies for snacks. After 12 weeks of not partaking in the candy dish at work, I'm pretty much officially declaring candy at work a thing of the past.
THE BAD
  •  I'll only be 34 for another 17 days. Doesn't 35 sound old? Like that is straight adult. There really is no denying it.
  • Casey's stroller sucks a big one but I wonder how much longer he will be using it and if a new one is justified but we're going to Disneyland in 4 weeks and there's no way I'm schlepping the one we have with us. No way.
  • At the rate I am losing weight, I won't be under 200 pounds for another 3 months or so. I guess after that my goal will be to weigh 160 by my 36th birthday, which is considered my ideal weight but I haven't seen since I was about 20 years old.
 THE UGLY
  • I'm still not in a smaller sized jeans which makes me wonder what these jeans were actually looking like when I was 8 pounds heavier. 
  • I burned my wrist on the pan while making a quesadilla and not only does it look ugly it feels ugly. Silver lining? Muppet bandaids.
  • My yard and fireplace which I hope to have pretty by the time my in-laws come in July.

4.25.2012

And Then There Were None

I have to admit, I am glad I waited to read this trilogy when all three books were already were released otherwise I'm pretty sure I would have lost my mind waiting for them to come out one by one. I started Mockingjay last week and really tried to take my time to read it. To savor it. To make it last. I failed. As you have probably figured out by now, the first book was about the games and the second is about an all-star game and the beginning of the rebellion. This final installment takes us into the rebellion itself. My goodness. I don't know what kinds of things Suzanne Collins has seen or heard but to read the way she describes a war zone and the military training zone-slash-refugee district, you have to wonder how she is able to make it all appear so realistic. Characters you have grown to love die without notice. There is real pain and real trauma and it hurts to read the details of it all. My goodness. I cannot recommend these books more. The way they call to mind the holocaust and actual wars would actually push me to say this should be required reading. We should know the horrors human beings are capable of as well as acknowledge the bravery and power that lies within each of us.

MORAL OF THAT STORY: Read these books.

4.24.2012

Book Review Tuesday

I finished The Hunger Games on March 29th and immediately ordered the hardback trilogy on Amazon.com. I waited patiently until it arrived on the 16th of April and then dove into the second book, Catching Fire. I had it completely read in two days. Thank goodness for being able to subtly read in my cubicle on quiet work days because I was hooked on this one. I thought the first book was great but the second had me on the edge of my seat. I could not believe what I was reading. It's stunning to me that this is considered Young Adult fiction because quite frankly it's some of the best reading I have done in ages. Teenage protagonists do not a teenager book make. I am incredibly invested in these characters and this futuristic yet archaic society and I'm not even the least bit ashamed like I was when I was reading the Twilight books. And as much as I thought I was a Gale gal? Peeta won me over in this book. He and Katniss make such a bad ass team that I would gladly follow them into battle. Make sure you have all three of these lined up in a row if you haven't read them yet because when they close with their cliffhanger ending, you practically want to scream.

4.23.2012

Movie Review Monday

We never did give Hugo a second chance. I guess we may have missed something incredible but if a movie doesn't catch my interests quickly, I really don't have the motivation to try and watch it. We did, however, wipe the dust off the red envelope containing Our Idiot Brother and gave it the old college try. I had a feeling I would like it because Paul Rudd is in it and he is just so damn likeable I can't imagine a movie with him in it being so bad. I did have a fear that this would be some kind of hipster movie given the crocs and the cast but it wasn't. It was basically a study in family. You have Paul Rudd who is kind of a dirty hippie and sells marijuana to a police man because he just had to put the trust out there that it was the right thing. He goes to jail for eight months nd when he gets out he finds his girlfriend has moved on. In order to get back on his feet, he's sort of forced to take shelter (at different times) with his mom, his lesbian sister, his new age sister and his reporter sister. All of whom, by the way, behave quite badly. I liked the cast, I liked the story. It was a good way to pass the time while Casey napped on Saturday. That's really all I have to say.

4.20.2012

Haiku Friday

I didn't blog much
This week was kind of a bust
Nothing blog-worthy
***
Reading Catching Fire
Is our next movie
***
Hopefully next week
I will give you a reason
To come back and read

4.16.2012

Monday Schnippets

  • I hit my goal of going to the gym 5 days last week.
  • On Saturday I spent hours cleaning the house and I think that's better than any workout.
  • Yesterday we walked and ran errands and played in the sunshine all day.
  • The scale said 213.5 today so I either maintained or lost half a pound depending on how accurate that is. I'd rather that number was lower.
  • Since I firmly believe in adjusting my goals according to reality so I can avoid disappointment, I would be pleased to be down to 210 by my birthday in 4 weeks but would be stoked if I could hit 205.
  • I tried really hard to watch Hugo this weekend but I was so bored by it that I fell asleep.

4.13.2012

Stupid Scale Haiku Friday

I am obsessed, y'all
I can't stop weighing myself
Every single day
***
214 Monday
216.5 Wednesday
215 Today
***
I know I shouldn't
Weight fluctuates after all
Yet I still do it

4.11.2012

This Damn Book

Do you remember me mentioning the book I couldn't get into prior to reading The Hunger Games? This is it: Emotionally Weird by Kate Atkinson. I have read at least three of her other books and have reviewed them here and I can honestly say I counted her as one of my favorite authors. That's why I didn't give up on this book and went back to it after I put it down for quite some time on at least two occasions. I guess I only like her when she is writing her detective novels about Jackson Brodie.
This book was written almost as if she wanted to see what she could get away with and still get her book published. It's the story of a university student and her attempt to pry her mostly unknown history out of her mother by way of a series of random tales. Said tales were nonsensical at best and uninteresting at worst. There are so many characters that are briefly mentioned that I could barely keep track of them all. This book numbers 350 pages and it took 329 of them to finally get me interested and able to understand what exactly it was that I was reading.
The thing that really stuns me is that Entertainment Weekly, a source I often trust to send me on the right path with books and movies alike, gave this book an A- and actually said it was "A sparkling comic meditation on how authors choose to tell their stories." Comic my ass! Stories in the plural indeed! And they are all in this book! To boot, there is no rhyme or reason to any of them! Can you guys tell that I am furious? Ugh!

MORAL OF THAT STORY: Clearly I need to work on my ability to put a book down for good when it doesn't grab me almost instantly. Trust my instincts, so to speak.

4.10.2012

Weight Loss Update

Yesterday was one month since I joined Curves and once a month they weigh and measure you. I already weigh myself at least once a day because I am neurotic so I knew I had lost but it's nice to have the other scale confirm it. I have officially lost 7 pounds. I had my body fat percentage done at the beginning and it was 38.6% and now it's 37.8% so that calculates to 4.41 body fat pounds lost. What's the other 2.59? Water?  My weight wearing pants, a tee shirt, socks and undergarments is 214 so I figure that's about 212 in the buff. That means, I'm very close to hitting my original short-term goal of 210 by my birthday. Do you think I can get down to 200? I've got a little over a month to see.
Curves also measures your bust , waist, abdomen, hips, thighs and arms. I guess overall I gained inches so I'm not really looking at that right now. I don't entirely trust the consistency of two different people measuring me. The lady that works there said the size differential is probably muscle gain so I'll just go with that. It was a couple inches up in one and a couple inches down in another so whatever. I have to say I'm extremely satisfied with my results. As of Monday I had gone 15 times to exercise. Potentially, I can go about 24 times a month so I'm still planning on kicking it up a notch. Last week they were closed on Good Friday so they killed my goal of going 5 days in a row but that's ok I guess. It's like every Monday I just hit my reset button and keep on trying to do my best.

4.09.2012

Game Review Monday

Well, kids, I didn't see a movie this weekend but I did play one hell of a video game. As I mentioned on Haiku Friday, BFF and her husband Babe came over and we decided to act like we were young again. After imbibing a few beers around the chiminea outside, we decided to get our dance on. I have Wii and I have PS3 but I hardly play either of them. Back in the day we used to get our Rock Band on, though. Well, BFF brought over Just Dance 3 and I can honestly tell you this shit was hilarious. We would play winner so sometimes it would be me versus Husband or Cod versus Babe or me versus Cod or however but the best time would be when it was time for Husband and Babe to throw down against one another in my living room. I can't remember the last time I laughed that hard. The last time I danced that hard was at Crusty's wedding, that's for sure. Only Just Dance 3 was barefoot on my carpet as opposed to in high heels on hard wood so I didn't have the crippling pain associated with dance like that time. The only pain I was feeling was on Saturday after getting less than 3 hours of sleep after 2 gallons of beer. Partying like rock stars, indeed.

4.06.2012

Good Haiku Friday

A coughing Casey
Kept me up a lot last night
Not a fan of that
***
All of us in bed
Husband, puppy, baby, me
Why not the bun bun?
***
I'm not so rested
But Cod and fam are coming
On this Good Friday

4.05.2012

The House That I Built

It's fun being a home-owner but it feels like every time I turn around we have another project to tackle. The big one right now is our fireplace. The fireplace that currently houses our bunny's cage and allows him sanctuary when he is playing with the puppy. Right now it's this retro red brick mess with a mirror and I hate it with a passion. I don't need a mirror over the fire place. I already have one wall to the right of the fire place completely covered in mirrors and another decorative mirror across from the mirror over the fireplace. How many mirrors does one woman need!? My brother knows people (sounds mob-like, yes?) that can cover the brick with this fancy stone stuff  for not too much money so that's something that will probably be done this month. Maybe this time we'll actually take a before and after picture?
And then there are the yards! Goodness. What a mess. The backyard I hardly care about because we have the puppy to destroy it and most of it is covered in concrete anyway. The front, though, we have one entire empty flower bed by our front door that needs something in it soon. Mud is not the look I am going for. Over the weekend we planted some mums in the bed that is in front of our living room window. We covered the excess dirt in wood chips and I have to say for less than $100 we did a pretty good job making things look nice.We also have a flower bed on the side of the house that is overrun with weeds and dying plants and miscellany so I'm having an old high school friend come over to give attention to it. She's trying to start a small business and I like to help "the people." While Husband is amazing at mowing the lawn, I need someone to tend to weeds and edging and other upkeep. She quoted me $60 a month to come four times a month. I think it's a steal. And? I get free time... to clean the house. Yah...

4.04.2012

Numbers

  • Nine weeks without candy drawer action! 
  • Down six whole pounds! That's 215 with clothes on! 
  • My goal for April is to go 5 days a week to Curves and do salads for lunch 5 days a week for a total of 4 weeks. I think I need to kick it up a notch to really see the results I want.
  • I've been trying to read this one book for months and it is just so hard to get into I don't even know why I bother trying to finish it. I guess that's one of my quirks. Plus I'm still waiting for my other two Hunger Games books to arrive.
  • There's less than 40 days til I turn 35. I'm not sure why this seems like such a big deal for me but it is LOOMING.

    MORAL OF THAT STORY: I clearly have nothing important to blog about lately unless it involves watching movies or watching my weight.

4.03.2012

Netflix Tuesday

Note it's not a "Two-sday" today. We only managed to watch one DVD this weekend and I blame an incredible lack of sleep thanks to some damn sinus thing and a baby that loves waking up at 5 a.m. And, of course, there's the return of Mad Men to television on Sunday nights. (On a side note: Why is that show so damn good? Betty is the least likeable character on television, hands down. Do I really like Don's new wife Megan? So much to ponder!) Luckily, our streak of mediocre rentals came to a screeching halt with Louis C.K.'s 2007 standup special Shameless. I only recently became aware of Louis C.K. and I am a huge fan. He had a bit part on Parks & Recreation as Leslie Knope's sweet cop boyfriend so naturally he's on my list of faves for that. I think we found another stand up special on Netflix though the name escapes me and I realized he makes me laugh the hardest I have laughed in some time. He's filthy dirty and always takes a joke one step too far and it usually involves masturbation. He's not even remotely politically correct and I love that about him. I was seriously exhausted after watching Shameless specifically after his description of his wife giving him the saddest hand job in the history of the world. If you don't mind blue humor and words like "faggot" being tossed around nonchalantly, then I highly recommend that you check him out. Just don't come crying to me if you're sensitive and hate it.

4.02.2012

Movie Review Monday

I am really glad I was fresh off of reading the book when I went to see The Hunger Games this weekend even though it made the subtle changes all the more noticeable. It's always hard to adapt a book to movie form without losing a lot but I felt the film stayed very true to the story and I highly recommend it. Husband didn't read the book and he had no trouble following along and said he enjoyed it as well. The book is mainly from the first person perspective of hero Katniss Everdeen (Jennifer Lawrence nailed it!) and I wondered how that would play on screen. It turns out the film version created the background scenes of the games, which was very interesting and made the vision of that kind of future even more frightening. I really thought the casting was fantastic (especially Stanley Tucci!) except for one character: Peeta. In writing, the character has a much more self-deprecating sense of humor whereas the actor came across like a little bit of a wuss. Because of that, I didn't feel the love triangle as much as I think I could have. That and the fact that Gale (played by cutie patootie and Miley Cyrus boyfriend/brother of Thor, Liam Hemsworth) wasn't in this movie nearly enough to establish said love triangle. While the fight scenes were definitely brutal, the book was far more grotesque in its descriptions. Still, it was shocking to see children in the audience. While at Barnes & Noble this weekend, I noticed lots of kids walking around with the books in their hands. I have to applaud this series and if the movie inspires more children to read, then I'm all for it. In fact, I'm excited about it.