Monday, February 28, 2011


Hooray for me--I managed to squeeze in "The King's Speech" right before the Oscars. And then right after, I watched the actual awards show. Though the opening montage of Hathaway and Franco was pretty funny, the rest was so predictable and boring. It probably doesn't help that I'm on East Coast time now and this thing goes on until 11:30pm. Dudes, you really have to entertain me, please! You want me to stay awake, right?!

First, the young co-hosts really showed their age. With lack of hosting carriage and composure, I felt I was watching the best man and maid of honor stumble and giggle their way through their toasts a box of wine in. I was waiting for one of them to start pointing at respected actors and start crying into the mike, I love you, man...I really, really love you, man.

Second--what a teaser to suggest that Hugh Jackman was going to sing and dance! The payoff was watching Hathaway sing a send-up of "On My Own" on her own? Pffft. Let down.

Third--how many outfits and hair dos did Hathaway go through? Distracting. Almost as much as wondering if Franco was stoned or indifferent? Leaning his head back so that his heavy-lidded glassy eyeballs would be able to read the teleprompter annoyed me. This is Hollywood for cripes sake, I know they have access to Four Loko backstage, son.

And finally, no surprises in the winners. I stayed through the end because I was really, really hoping that Annette Bening would pull out a surprising win. Oh well. At least Natalie Portman's speech didn't include how much her fiance "totally wants to sleep with me!"

On the plus side, I really enjoyed Kirk Douglas' bit during the Supporting Actress award--really encouraging that a stroke has not kept him down. I found David Seidler's speech about being the oldest winner of the Original Screenplay Oscar witty and inspiring. And man, Sandra Bullock--that woman has got it together. She showed everyone how it's done--gorgeous and with great comic timing, class, and sincerity--totally engaging. Also--after seeing more clips from the nominations, I'd really like to see "Winter's Bone" now (though, it looks pretty intense--kind of still scared).

Oh well, on to next year...

Friday, February 25, 2011

Oscars Already?

How did that happen? Every year it is a goal of mine to see all the Best Picture nominations and I actually accomplished it last year--the year they doubled Best Picture noms to 10 films. So far this year, I've only seen 3 of the 10 (Inception, The Kids Are All Right, and The Social Network).

Because of my SAG membership, I have an opportunity to watch most of the other nominated movies on iTunes. But I have to say I'm kind of craving lighter fare than "Black Swan" or "127 Hours".

Kind of wish "Due Date" was nominated.

But I'll make it a goal to watch at least one other nominated film before Oscar time. Any recommendation which one it should be?

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Long vs. Short

Okay, so seeing a recent rear picture made me realize that, among other things, it's time for a haircut. Or maybe I just need to comb or brush my hair on a regular basis? Meh, regardless, I made an appointment for a haircut.

Currently, my hair is on the long side. And I'm reaching that point where it's starting to get caught in shoulder bag handles and a ponytail feels pretty heavy--like it's plucking the hairs off the front of my head. Usually at this point, in the past, I reflexively chop a good chunk off, like I did for Halloween--always feels like I lose about 10 pounds of hair. But then at that length, I feel like my hair evolves into some version of soccer mom hair. Which truth be told, isn't the worst thing in the world, but I have plenty of years ahead of me to wield that sensible style and amass Teddy Bear University sweatshirts.

I often recall my mother's opinion when I had long hair growing up, which was simply, you look like a barbarian. It would seem my indifference to a comb or brush started early. I inherited my hair from her--thick and very, very coarse--not too unlike the bristles on a brush for scrubbing barbecue grills. Looking back on it, I'm pretty sure my aversion to meticulous combing was not only based on laziness, but was also the result of watching my mother sharply cut, shape, and style her hair into what is often referred to as the "China Chop" (aka, classic Asian bob with heavy bangs). I also deemed it a prototype for a motorcycle helmet and therefore had thorough reluctance in cultivating this smooth look.

Another issue with long hair for me is that due to apathy and cheapness, more and more of my gray hair is coming through. Given the stated uncombed coarseness of my hair, soon this will put me a ratty shawl, warty chin, and long crooked finger away from trying to lure children into my gingerbread house. I'm all for challenging paradigms of what's expected of women as they age, but it seems there is an age where visually, a long-haired woman jumps from hot mama to missing fourth wife in a polygamous religious sect.

And this is not too say I wouldn't love to have really short, short hair. If I had good face, I'd love to have a pixie cut but unfortunately, I don't. A short pixie haircut with my coarse hair and my fairly androgynous face would make me downright mannish. I'm not exaggerating when I say I would seriously look like a drag queen who fell in a river and lost his wig and makeup. I'm truly jealous of all my friends who have the good face for really short hair.

So that brings me back to this--

Barbarian in a cardigan

Do I keep my hair long or lop off a few pounds?

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

The spare room is happening

I'm still working on decluttering and organizing the spare room. But with a little over a week before my sister and her family come for a visit, I really had to focus on securing a bed for the room. After bombing out at the Macy's sale on mattresses (again no delivery until too late) and hitting a local furniture store with only 2 selections in my price range, I did a google search and happened upon Carolina Furniture and Mattress.

It was just right--good selection and they totally worked with me on price. An 800-coil Simmons BeautyRest has got my name on it. And now I have time to really get that room organized! Delivery is slated for the day of their arrival--and well, nothing could go possibly go wrong there!

I'm pretty excited that this room is finally coming together!

Tuesday, February 22, 2011


Anybody remember Kids in the Hall? It was a Canadian ensemble sketch comedy show from the 80s and I remember discovering much later in syndication on cable (Comedy Central?). The flow and humor (not really for the kiddies) is kind of like Nick Swardson's Pretend Time show today. The show would often go from sketch to backstage and sometimes later scenes would connect from an earlier scene.

Definitely one of my favorite comedy series of all time and one of my favorite sketches was when Bruce McCulloch's "double" appears. Backstage, Bruce McCulloch runs into a much heavier and older man who claims to be his double. Obviously Bruce doesn't see it and is somewhat miffed that the guy thinks he looks just like him:

Then in a later scene, to his annoyance, the "double" appears and another actor can't tell them apart, looking at each of them in turn, shocked, "Bruce?! Bruce?!" (and then the scene flows into another sketch):

For some reason, this set of sketches has been one of my favorite. Perhaps because of some uncanny possible future relevance?


The girl had friends over the weekend and I had served them pancakes and eggs. I was putting stuff into the dishwasher and then I went to put stuff into the dryer which is in a closet in the hall on the other side of the kitchen. All of the sudden I hear one of the girl's friends come into the kitchen to bring his plate to the sink and he starts saying, "Thank you very much, the food was deli----omigosh! I thought you were your mom!"

Apparently the girl (not me) was at the kitchen sink rinsing out her plate. I froze, listening to the stunned silence. I can only imagine the face the girl made because all of the sudden the friend is stammering, "Sorry! It's just that I thought you were your mom when I brought...uh...well, you kind of look like..."

The girl responds, in my opinion, much more vigorously appalled than Bruce McCulloch. She shrieks, "Aaarrrrrgggghhh! Why are you saying that?! My mom is, like, old...and she's like...full-Asian!"

Fortunately, after some more apologizing and ranting (yeesh, should I be insulted?) this became water under the bridge and the friendship was preserved.

But out of curiosity, assuming general peripheral vision because you're focused on just bringing a plate to the sink, is it fair (and so insulting) to say that it is possible to confuse this:

With this?

Erg. Point taken, sweetie. Hmm. Well, on that note, I've suddenly found motivation to exercise again (or just buy looser shirts). And get a haircut.

Monday, February 21, 2011


The chilly weather broke and we had a weekend of weather in the 70s and 80s. The girl and her friends spent time outside which, ironically, included building a "town", which they were in and out of:

Though they also spent time riding down the alley on boogie boards and skateboards:

As for me, I made a bit of progress on the spare room:

It's going a bit slower than I expected. I'm in that sorting stage and I've started a box for donation, though I know most of my friends would say I'm not putting enough in the "Toss/donate" pile. Fellow crafters, isn't it tough to throw out "possibilities"? Holla!

I also went to a mattress store yesterday but they can't deliver soon enough! Argh. So I'm going to try to another store today. I think that's where I really need the luck...

Friday, February 18, 2011

Skymall presents: Birthday Wishes

The last flight I was on, all the crosswords were done in the in-flight magazines in my row. Argh. Defeated, I picked up that SkyMall catalog that's always in all the seat pockets. Blerg. Am I the only one who equates it with paging through the free "magazines" in doctors' waiting rooms which are usually the blandest reading material disguised as blatant advertising for some pharmaceutical group? Bottom line, nothing for me. Booooooring. Whenever I've looked through the SkyMall catalog in the past, I felt like it's full of stuff like this:

Or this:

Or this:


Though this time around, I've noticed there are a few things that, if I had money to burn I wouldn't mind getting, like this:

But this time around I also discovered an item in the catalog that would make one of Paul's biggest bedroom fantasies come to life. I HAD to get it for him for his birthday. What can I say? I'm a dream-maker:

Demonstrated by the girl with a root beer float
The only thing you can't see is a Huskers game on TV and me serving pizza

Happy Birthday Daddy!

Thursday, February 17, 2011


What's that sound? I believe it's millions of 13 year old girls screaming Noooooooooo! Bella and Edward are FOREVER!

Or perhaps it's the collective sound of millions of 17 year old girls shrieking now he can be mine!

On another shocking note, Opa and Oma sweetly sent us a box of chocolates for Valentine's Day. And what started out as hmm, I wonder what this one is? ended up like this:

Meh, perhaps it's not so shocking.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

On to the next one

The house is still in the process of getting unpacked an organized. Honestly, I feel like the only room truly done is the kitchen. The living room is a close second but I still have to organize the CDs/DVDs and hang more stuff on the walls. But it's almost there too. I guess I'd reason the slow progress is that I don't want to rush anything and just put stuff away for the sake of putting it away--that I want to really have a good system in place and filtered out what we truly want/need to keep.

So the next room I'm tackling is the spare room. It's been kind of a holding area for crafting stuff and all the record albums, as well as some overage from the SoCal garage. The current goal for this room is to craft stuff as well as be a guest room. As you can see, it could use a little organizing:

Okay, there's a little path here...

Yeesh, that's a lot of stuff on the shelves, probably need to filter again

There's all the albums. Oh and the turntable to turn them to mp3s. Still in the box.

Sigh. Well there's a ways to go. Especially since I've got two weekends to organize this and fit a bed in here. Why the sudden motivation? 'Cause Augie (and his parents) is coming for a visit! Best motivation ever.

Well at least it's not as bad as the craft room in SoCal:

Uh, right?

Anyhoo, I'm open to any suggestions and wishes of good luck and focus. Here we go...

Monday, February 14, 2011

Happy Valentine's Day

Well the girl is now in middle school so they don't do class valentines anymore but the girl wanted to whip up a few for her friends. Linda pointed us to these cute downloadable ones from Pepto Girl:

Peptogirl Valentines

And I managed to do a little crafty love on this old sweater which had a stain in the front. Just in time for Valentine's Day:

Wishing everyone a sweet (candy-filled, crafty, or otherwise) day!

Saturday, February 12, 2011

The party was jumping

So yesterday, I headed off to the girl's dance early to help with setup. I was assigned the task of hanging balloons around the cafeteria. I thought it'd be an easy task until I realized I had to pull the balloons from this tangled bouquet:


At first I was determined to carefully untangle all these ribbons but after what felt like too many minutes gone by, I just started cutting them from the giant bouquet and I Got R Done.

There was so much food--plenty of sweets:

Hey look at those awesome cupcakes! A mom who loves her girl must have made those!

And savories:

Now that's a party!

And right before the kids came in, the DJ played GnR's "Patience". Which was somehow, ridiculously perfect for the lull right before the dance. Here is the cafeteria transformed:

The balloons make it, right?

The kids started in little groups, first having some food and drink but as the music played, the kids started to dance here and there. What I found amazing was when this song "Cupid Shuffle" played, everybody was on the floor and danced some known choreography to it:

I thought I happened upon a flash mob. But one of the girl's friends explained that it's a very popular song/dance to know around here. She said it was like that "electric song" that people dance to at weddings. After that brought everyone to the floor, most of the kids stayed and kept dancing.

Impressively, these kids were pretty pumped about other songs too, like the Black Eye Peas' "I Gotta Feeling":

Even this girl had a pretty good time:

I only ventured once calling her out as she passed me by (in hindsight, I'm sure she was hoping I'd stay silent as a statue). When she heard me call her name, she shrank back wide-eyed, as if I were a weird guy in a trench coat promising free candy in the trunk of my car. What, Mom? she whispered through her pressed mouth. What was I expecting? Well if this was just a couple of years back, she would have hugged me, I swear. Oh well. Did you try any of the food? She sighed, I will and scampered off, relieved. I went on to another assigned task of organizing cut-outs and before I knew it, the dance was over.

Not only did the girl survive the dance with her mom there as a chaperone, she said she had a great time.

And no worries, I did get my hug later.

Friday, February 11, 2011

The big dance

The girl's middle school is having a dance after school today. It will be her first. She didn't realize I had volunteered to chaperone it until I told her. She was thrilled.

As thrilled as if I had announced that wearing my underwear on the outside of my clothes would be a good look for me. She shrieked, "Mooooooommmmm, whyyyyyy? This is so embarrassing!"

I tried to put those fears aside by offering to "drop some heavy rhymes" or "bust my sweet moves on the dance floors", but ironically, they had the opposite effect. More shrieking. "What?! No! Just...just stand in the corner with other parents!" Glad I bit my tongue on suggesting we work on a dance together--because in my head, we'd kill.

On the positive side, she was pleased with the desserts I had made, including cupcakes:

I even molded pink chocolate into heart toppers:

And took the leftover melted pink chocolate and dipped and decorated pretzel rods:

Sigh. I guess I'll try my best to not embarrass her this afternoon at the dance. Though I do plan on taking pictures--I wonder if that's considered embarrassing? Guess I'll find out the hard way...

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

I blame MTV

I was waiting for the girl at her viola lesson and these young teens were across from me joking, laughing, and awkwardly sharing earbuds.

Yeesh, what am I, watching an episode of Skins?

Monday, February 7, 2011

Super Sunday

We made Super Bowl Sunday a broader Super Sunday and invited the girl's friends over before the game for pizza and sundaes, to celebrate them all making honor roll:

The kids were less dazzled by the two kinds of chili I had made (veggie 3 bean and buffalo with all the fixins!) for the game:

Unfortunately, a couple of the kids were sick and no adults came for the Super Bowl portion of Super Sunday so...we'll be eating chili for days.

Saturday I happened upon a highlight replay of the 2009 Super Bowl where Arizona had a stunning rally from behind and were poised to win and then the Steelers pull it together for a wild finish and win 27-23. I remember realizing: The Steelers will take this one too. And goodness knows I love rooting for the underdog. So of course, I'm thinking I should bet money on this. The other big sign pointing to this was that I was struggling again in some of my Words With Friends games. Because the recurring theme this year is I don't have enough luck to do well in both WWF and the NFL. Fortunately for me, apparently Super Bowl Sunday is the busiest gambling day of the year and I couldn't place what would have been my losing bet. Guess I've got no luck anywhere right now.

It was an exciting game to watch anyway and of course, it's also become about the commercials. I'm with the general public and adored the little Darth Vader commercial (given that we never saw his face, the kid expressed the Darth Vader vibe amazingly with his body and energy) and was entranced by the Chrysler "Imported from Detroit" commercial. I'm in the minority who thought the Teleflora commercial with the clueless guy encouraged to "speak from the heart" by Faith Hill and taps out Your rack is unbelievable was pretty funny. I'm also one of the few who didn't find the Timothy Hutton Groupon commercial offensive. I didn't find he mocked the plight of Tibetan refugees, I found he mocked the typical maudlin delivery of celebrity spokespeople really well. Growing up on Sally Struthers' "Feed the Children" ads, I remember tuning out the message because of the overwrought delivery. And for better or worse, I was barely listening to the initial delivery of the Groupon commercial because I was waiting for the punchline, as with most Super Bowl commercials--kicked off with the Doritos "The Best Part" commercial:

I was also in the minority who didn't think the half time show was the worst. Granted the audio was funked up but I kind of take that for granted when it comes to such huge live events. The only ironic part was the participation of Slash. Given how appalled he was at the thought of Glee covering GnR, I couldn't help but wonder if this schlocky version of "Sweet Child o' Mine", complete with LED top hat, sets the bar for him in terms of GnR covers? Yeesh, Slash, to quote Ben Stiller's orderly in "Happy Gilmore"--you can trouble me for a warm glass of shut-the-hell-up!

I managed to stay awake for the awards portion of the Super Bowl, including Roger Staubach's walk up to the podium with the Lombardi trophy. Was I the only one who read his lips expressing annoyed "okay, okay"s as the Packers kept touching the trophy as he walked up to the podium? And could that podium have been any smaller? I don't think I saw more than 4 people on that thing at a time, which meant for all this awkward shuffling or someone hanging half on the podium, half on the stairs.

Anyhoo, good game. Looking forward to next season...if there is one.

Friday, February 4, 2011

Anybody else psyched for Sunday?

FINALLY! A new episode of Glee! After the Super Bowl! I should make sure I take a nap. That's definitely the disadvantage of East Coast live viewing over West Coast. Kind of jealous all my friends in SoCal can shut it down before 9 on Sunday.

Regarding the game, I'm kind of torn about you will win on Sunday. I feel like the Packers have such fresh blood who are so hungry and talented versus the Steelers who are seasoned pros where some already have a ring. Hey, is Pouncey going to play? Reflexively, I'd give the Packers the edge. Either way, it should be a good game.

Anybody else looking forward to a super Sunday?

Thursday, February 3, 2011

One to go

The girl announces, you know those cardboard rolls inside paper towels? I need two of them by Friday.

This coming from a girl who thought nothing of not running the dishwasher the 5 days I was gone. Is the logic completely escaping her?

You know, it takes a while to use up all the paper towels to get to the cardboard rolls. They only get used when there is a big mess to clean up and throw away, like when the cats throw up. You might have wanted to be on top of this a while ago.

Crestfallen, she agrees and figures she can just roll up stiff paper for a roll.

But, by sheer coincidence, a near dozen eggs topple to the floor when she cooks some more eggs.

Though I don't know if she'll get a second roll by Friday.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Happy Eggs

The girl is into cooking and eating eggs lately.

I'd say she has a pretty good knack with them. They taste as good as they look.