Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Way Back Wednesday - Lilo & Stitch

At Christine's encouragement, I will begin featuring some of her favorite Disney movies for the next few Way Back Wednesdays. This week, I'm starting with her favorite, LILO & STITCH.

Lilo & Stitch was released in 2002 by Disney and is the 42nd animated feature in the Walt Disney Animated Classics. Lilo & Stitch was nominated for the 2002 Academy Award for Best Animated Feature.

At the beginning of the film, we learn about Experiment 626, an aggressive and cunning creature from a far away galaxy constructed by Dr. Jumba. When Jumba is imprisoned, 626 is exiled into space. Although nearly indestructible, he is knocked unconscious when landing on Earth. He is mistaken for a dog and sent to a local animal shelter.

After the death of her parents, a Hawaiian girl - Lilo - adopts an unusual pet - Stitch - who turns out to be Experiment 626. Left in the care of her 19 year old sister, Nani, the sisters risk separation because of a social workers concerns about Lilo's care.

Nani is forced to take Lilo and Stitch with her on job interviews. During these trips, Lilo tries to "tame" Stitch by teaching him to be like Elvis Presley. During all their antics, Jumba has been sent to search for 626 and return him to his home planet.

Favorite quotes:

Stitch: [while using a VW Beetle to defend himself against attackers] Blue punch buggy... no punch-back!

Lilo: 'Ohana means family, family means nobody gets left behind. Or forgotten.

Stitch: This is my family. I found it, all on my own. Is little, and broken, but still good. Yeah, still good.

Lilo: Our family's little now, and we don't have many toys... But if you want, you could be a part of it. You could be our baby, and we'd raise you to be good.

Captain Gantu: Abomination!
Stitch: Stupid-head!

Lilo: Elvis Presley was a model citizen. I've compiled a list of his traits for you to practice. Number one... is dancing!

Lilo: You came back.
Stitch: Nobody gets left behind.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Devon Mikayla

I realized over the weekend that it had been a while since I updated everyone on my upcoming grandbaby. We found out last week that the Tadpole is going to be a girl!! Her name is officially Devon Mikayla and her due date is June 6th. Here is an ultrasound picture of Devon taken on January 19th - she's sucking her little thumb!

The rest of the ultrasound pictures are a little dark, so I'm only going to post one more. This is a view of one of her feet - look at the size of that foot! She weighed a whooping 12 ounces when this ultrasound was done.
We are all so happy that Devon appears healthy and her mama, Marie, is doing well. Please continue to keep them all in your thoughts and prayers.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Free Flowing Friday

Friday, Friday, Friday - how did you arrive so early? It's been another fast-paced week and right now, all I can think about is a long nap after work!

1.) I want to thank Katerina Stoykova-Klemer and her writing group - Poezia Writing Group -for allowing members of the Community of Mercer County Writers to join them this week. It was great fun and we will be attending again very soon. We meet so many talented writers, all full of energy and active muses. Thanks guys, especially you John Malkovich (Keith) - we'll be seeing you in HECK!

2.) "The Wizard of Oz" at the Ragged Edge Community Theatre was a sell-out last weekend and we are hoping for the same this weekend. It is amazing that a small local Theatre can have standing room only for an amateur performance. Look for many more great shows under the direction of Tagan Citty. "Southern Hospitality" opens February 19th.

3.) I got the email I was waiting for this week, but it is not as great of news as I wanted. Arcadia Publishing has accepted my book proposal for Historical Images of Harrodsburg, but they want to move the deadline up from October to August. I'm hyperventilating over losing 2 months of time and I'm second guessing myself. Will I have time to get the book I want ready in only 7 months? I'm expecting my first grandchild in June and I will be getting Christine ready for college. I'll be doing a lot of praying this weekend - they want an answer on Monday.

4.) I'm excited about the Book Release Party for "The Women of Mercer County" on Sunday, January 31st from 3-5pm at Beaumont Inn. I hope everyone comes out and supports this historically important book. The book features more than 125 stories and will be available for $20. After the Book Release Party, the books will be available at The Harrodsburg Herald, Beaumont Inn, J. Sampson Antiques & Books and Harrodsburg/Mercer County Tourist Commission.

5.) I'm still fuming over Chief Justice John Roberts decision yesterday giving big corporations the same rights as individual citizens. In the words of Keith Olbermann:
"... the First Amendment, free speech for persons, which went into effect in 1791, applies to corporations, which were not recognized as the equivalents of persons until 1886. In short, there are now no checks on the ability of corporations or unions or other giant aggregations of power to decide our elections. None."
As if the GOP weren't already in the back pocket of big business.

6.) Two weeks until LOST ...

Batter Up ...

... Thanks Judge Roberts for burning the 1st amendment. Doesn't the US Constitution begin with, "We the people," not, "We the people and corporations and unions?" Just one more step toward big corporations running the country ...

Keith Olbermann had it right last night:
"... the First Amendment, free speech for persons, which went into effect in 1791, applies to corporations, which were not recognized as the equivalents of persons until 1886. In short, there are now no checks on the ability of corporations or unions or other giant aggregations of power to decide our elections. None."

This decision is like the eqivalent of me being able to yell "FIRE" in a crowded movie theatre.

Here's what Judge Roberts said in 2005 - oh, how soon they forget:
"Judges are like umpires. Umpires don't make the rules; they apply them. The role of an umpire and a judge is critical. They make sure everybody plays by the rules. But it is a limited role. Nobody ever went to a ball game to see the umpire... I will remember that it's my job to call balls and strikes and not to pitch or bat."

Of course, Roberts and this Republican led Supreme Court have just tilted the playing field in favor of the GOP, as if they didn't already benefit most from coporate donations. This is one of the biggest reasons the GOP is against healthcare reform, they know they will lose all those big dollars from the health insurance and health care businesses.

Just another example of why we need to impose term limits on Supreme Court Justices. Score another victory for the Republicans and the Conservative Movement! The American People are the ones to suffer ...

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Way Back Wednesday - Let the Right One In

To cover for the fact I'm on another Dark Shadows kick (watching several episodes a week instead of watching a movie), I'm going to highlight one of my favorite "vampire" movies. Although technically not up to my standards for a "Way Back Wednesday" (it was released in 2008), this is a hauntingly good movie.

LET THE RIGHT ONE IN is a Swedish import classified as a horror film, but it has the ability to generate true feelings. The main character, Oskar - played by Kåre Hedebrant - is a 12-year-old outcast who is a frequent target for bullies. He dreams of getting his revenge, but he never stands up to the boys.

Oskar finally gains a true friend when 12-year-old Eli - played by Lina Leandersson - moves in next door. Oskar now has a friend, ally, and first love. Eli gives Oskar the strength to fight back and stand up to his enemies.

I'm going to tell you any more about the plot, but this is a movie you should see instead of read about. But let me say, it is definitely worth watching.

Based on the novel by John Ajvide Linqvist (who also wrote the script), LET THE RIGHT ONE IN is a great story because appears to be one storyline and genre, but quickly transforms into something else. Sweet, innocent and romantic one minute, then evil and bloody the next - it will keep you on the edge of your seat.

Favorite quotes:

Oskar: Are you a vampire?
Eli: I live off blood...
Eli: Yes.
Oskar: Are you...
Oskar: Dead?
Eli: No. Can't you tell?

Oskar: Are you really twelve?
Eli: Yes. It's just I've been twelve for a very long time.

Oskar: [first lines - imagining revenge] Squeal like a pig. So, Squeal.

Oskar: Who are you?
Eli: I'm like you.
Oskar: What do you mean?
Eli: [accusing tone] What are you looking at? Well? Are you looking at me? [points her finger at Oskar] So scream! Squeal!
Eli: Those were the first words I heard you say.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Tim Burton may take on Maleficent

According to Ain't it Cool, Tim Burton is going to re-imagine Sleeping Beauty, but it's not really Beauty he cares about. He wants to tell his story from the point of view of Maleficent - it will be called Maleficent. Personally, I always wanted to know more about her myself - why did she hate the 3 Godmothers? Why did she hate Beauty's parents? Interesting questions, and in the hands of Burton and his team, it's going to be fun seeing the answers.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Backyard wildlife habitat - part #2 - landscaping:

Creature of Habit

I consider myself a creature of habit - some people may say I'm just stuck in my ways. However you want to phrase it, I have a tendency to do things the same way every time I do them.

This morning, on the spur of the moment, I took a different route to work. This may not seem like a big deal to some, considering I only drive 5 miles to work, but this morning I felt like a rebel.

Instead of driving up Main Street, I came in through a side street. Because our courthouse is currently being rebuilt (don't get me on a rant about the evils of tearing down the historic courthouse!), there is a wide open view of the upper portion of Main Street. Harrodsburg has a beautiful Main Street! The view from College Street to East Office Street on up to Main Street give a panoramic view of the Kentucky Fudge Company - one of my favorite places to eat - Studio G, Whitaker Bank and several others.

Fascinating what you can see when you break out of a rut.

Now, wonder what "habit" I'll break tomorrow??

Friday, January 15, 2010

Free Flowing Friday

To say 2K10 has gotten off to a bang would be an understatement! Here it is the 3rd Friday into the New Year, and I've yet to make a decent blog post. Too much to do, so little time.

1.) I'd like to invite everyone out to the Ragged Edge Community Theatre for our production of "The Wizard of Oz." The show opened last night - show times are:
  • January 15 and 16th at 8pm
  • January 17th at 3pm
  • January 21, 22, and 23rd at 8pm
  • January 24th at 3pm

Admission is $8 for adults and $6 for children 12 yo and under. The show is fabulous and the cast and crew have worked very hard - forgoing their Christmas breaks to get a head start on the production.

2.) I have submitted by first book of poetry to Finishing Line Press for their New Women Voices contest. Prize money is $1,000 and publication of the book, so I'm keeping my fingers crossed. The name of my book is "The Care and Feeding of Nightmares." Even if I don't win the contest, I am going to pursue publication of this book because I'm very proud of the depth of feeling it contains.

3.) I have submitted my book proposal for "Harrodsburg Historical Images" to Arcadia Publishing. As you may recall, they contacted me just before Thanksgiving last year and wanted me to work on a book about Harrodsburg. I was pleased and honored to be contacted, so now I'm just waiting to see what my deadline will be for completing the work.

4.) The book "Women of Mercer County" has been published and there will be a book release party on January 31st at Beaumont Inn. I have 3 essays in this book: Granny Devine, Granny Sallee, and Amy Carter Sallee (my sister). This book has been a long time coming and I am anxious to see the finished product.

5.) And one more book related thought, I am nearly finished with the editing process for "I Dream of My Past" - a collection of my essays from MERCER'S MAGAZINE. This is another book I will actively seek publication of this year. I can't believe that after a lifetime of writing, I will have at least one book published this year, with the potential of 3 more! All my hard work is finally paying off.

6.) Although I don't make New Year's Resolutions, I do have a few goals for this year (many of them are listed above), but one of my biggest goals is to take control of my life again. For the past 5 years, I feel like I've been floundering in the sea of life and going where ever the waves take me. I need to step in and make concrete decisions for the course of my life. It's a hard thing to do, but I'm taking one baby step at a time.

Monday, January 11, 2010

Planning a backyard habitat - part 1:

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Up on my Soap Box

Oh, man, I've put my foot in my mouth again - or maybe my laptop keyboard.
(That's me climbing up on my soap box)

My 17 year old daughter came home from school yesterday and was furious about a "Literacy Rally" held at school that morning. Now, you must understand, my daughter is a straight A student, is on the Student Body Council and plans to go to college in the fall. She is all about reading and education, and although she hates going to "pep rallies" for the sports teams, she got her hopes up this one would be different.

Her first complaint was the "motivational speech" the superintendent gave. She said instead of trying to pump the kids up and get them excited about reading and learning, he basically said they were all stupid. I wasn't at the rally, so I only have her commentary to go on, but she said he complained about low test scores and bad attitudes. I realize there are some bad apples in the bunch, but they aren't all slackers. Not to brag again, but my daughter's reading ACT score is 30 - she is definitely not a slacker.

Then, as a reward to celebrate literacy, they were supposed to be impressed by having a professional football player give a speech. Really, for a literacy speech, a football player?! With a beautiful Commonwealth full of talented authors and poets, the school system picks a football player to motivate the students to do better in school. My daughter would have been better served by listening to our Poet Laureate, Gurney Norman - or Silas House or Chris Offutt or Wendall Berry or Bobbie Ann Mason or Ed McClanahan - the list of great KY writers is infinite.

But the thing that really pissed her off is the Dance Team performing to a vulgar song by Kesha call Tick Tock. Really, the principal at MCSH thought these lyrics were appropriate to present at a Literacy Rally, really??
"... brush my teeth with a bottle of Jack ..."
... Pulling up to the parties trying to get a little bit tipsy ..."
... Ain't got a care in world, but got plenty of beer ..."
... Boys trying to touch my junk, junk ..."
... Don't stop, make it pop ..."
This is the same principal that censors every word the school newspaper prints - and he won't allow them to write stories on music or musicians, or certain comedians.

I don't believe in censorship, so I really don't have a problem with the lyrics. Hell, "Bat Out of Hell" is one of my favorite songs, but dangit, there is a time and place for everything and in my opinion, a public high school is not the time or place. Not all children listen to rap - I know mine doesn't (but she does love her European metal bands!), and she was embarrassed by the lyrics - mainly because of all the hormonal boys sitting around her.

Again, it's not the Dance Team (or the volleyball team or the cheerleaders or the tennis players or insert your own sport) I have a problem with - it's their choice of skimpy clothing and vulgar music. In the case of a high school presentation, in my opinion they should have performed to instrumental music. After all, I have to give signed permission for my daughter to watch R rated movies at school (for Drama and AP Literature) - but the school decides what they can listen to without consulting a parent. Many of these so called "rap" songs come with warning labels to help keep parents informed.

I'm just sick of the double standard in school - from the dress code to activities. I know it will never stop, and since my daughter only has 5 1/2 more months at this school, I'm choosing not to battle the school system.

Okay ...

I'm stepping off my soap box ...

Shut the Damn Door!

Baby, it's cold outside! To steal a line from Bill Meck - WLEX TV 18 weatherman:
"Who went to Canada and left the door open!" I mean really, does it have to be sooooooo cold?

Now, before it sounds like I'm complaining, I thought I'd list some of the reasons this bone-chilling weather is a good thing:
  • You can put your glass of Coke (or whatever you drink) out on the window ledge for 10 minutes and not have to use ice.
  • You can snuggle on the couch with your honey - two bodies can make the night a little warmer.
  • All that shivering helps to burn calories!
  • 3 things - hot chocolate, fuzzy blanket and a good book, oh, yes!!
  • You don't have to worry about unexpected visitors, 'cause no one in their right mind would be out in this weather unless absolutely necessary.
  • You can justify eating that chocolate, "Because I need to keep my metabolism up in order to stay warm."
  • You can get away with not washing your hair because stocking caps are the order of the day.
  • You can store up great stories to tell your grandkids; "When I was a young whipper-snapper, it was so cold I ... "
  • No mosquitoes, no mosquito bites!
  • You can walk across the muddy spot in your yard and not worry about getting your feet dirty.
  • You can use your car to store extra ice cream - it's never too cold for ice cream!

Monday, January 4, 2010

Feeding birds during the winter:

Happy 2K10

(Must touch toes)

I learned a long time ago not to make New Year's Resolutions because I can never keep them. That being said, I do have some goals I wish to obtain during the year 2010:

I want to have my first book published - I am currently working on 3. One is a collection of my Mercer's Magazine stories, one is a book of poetry and one is a pictorial history of Harrodsburg. I would love to get all 3 published, but I know that's being greedy, so my goal is to get at least one of these in print.

I am not setting a weight loss goal because this task seems unsurmountable to me, but I have set a goal of getting healthier in 2010. I need to exercise more, eat less and try to wean myself off of Coca-Cola yet again. I realize I need to take one step at a time, but in my case, I may have to take one minute at a time.

Keep my home organized before my first grandbaby arrives! My home is currently not "child friendly" and I want to see my grandbaby lots and lots - so out with the old and bring in NO new! I need to minimize my home and get rid of the junk that is cluttering every room. I also want to turn our spare bedroom into an office / nursery. This will be a monumental undertaking, but it has to be done.

I also want to spend as much time as possible with my youngest daughter before she is off to college. I can't believe my baby is in her last semester of her senior year - in 9 months she will be off to college and I'll be left with an empty nest. I plan to make the most of my time with her.

I have a longer list of goals printed out and posted on the desks in both of my offices and I hope to make baby steps on each goal every day. For some reason, obtaining goals just sounds better to me than keeping New Year's resolutions.

So, what have you planned for the New Year?