Thursday, March 31, 2011

A Mid-Life List

Painting by Jan Van Eyck
I haven't done a list in awhile and thought maybe it's time.  So....what do I want to list about you may well ask?

How about all the life modifications that we women must make as we are firmly planted in the "Middle Ages".  (Sounds dark and dreary, doesn't it?)

Top 10 Adjustments for the Middle Years:

1.  And this is a big one...make sure you go to the bathroom before you get in the car.  Even the shortest drive could unexpectedly turn into a longer one and it would be terrible to be caught short.

2.  No more tucking in - Due to the slow but steady advance of your mid-section, you find yourself draping clothes rather than wearing cloths.  And certainly no more tucking in of shirts and blouses.  I have bought more long sweaters this past winter than a care to reveal...(7).

3.  Your cholesterol level actually means something -  Not sure if this is all of us, but I've found that my cholesterol just keeps creeping higher and higher on the charts.   I am officially eating better. No more snacking and no more ice cream treats in the evening.  So sad. Don't know if my efforts will make any difference.  My cousin told me the other day "You're not going to be able to lower it...it's heredity.  You're going to be on a Statin."  He's probably right, but that doesn't mean I'm not going to try.

4.  High Heels...bye bye - Now it's not that they are totally gone, but the days of wearing them all day at work are just silly.  Not that I don't occasionally try it, but I pay for it that night with foot cramps.  (Don't worry honey, I'll still pull them out for special events.)

5.  Comfort becomes your #1 dressing rule -  My favorite wardrobe includes my big comfy jeans (I bought a pair of guy jeans one size too big, just for slouching around the house), a tee, white sock and sneaks.  I think I might actually wear a skirt to work...maybe twice a year.  Now, I still dress somewhat stylish (Caity, no smart pants comments), but comfort seems to be my first thought.

6.  Use It or Lose It - I truly wish someone had emphasized this to me when I was in my late 30's and 40's.  Your strength and flexibility fade with time...so don't take what you can do for granted.  Build on it. Strengthen it.  And more importantly, don't give up when it gets hard to move.  Just keep going.  Walking, Yoga, Dancing, Running.  Find somethings you love and keep doing it.  I truly wish I hadn't taken my flexibility for granted.

7.  Glasses - My glasses now travel with me...room to room.  I'm fortunate that I don't need glasses to read (yet), but I do need them for distance and now watching or better yet..reading anything on the Telly requires my glasses.

8.  Careful when you sneeze - 'nuf said.

9.  Careful when you laugh - 'nuf said.

10.  And finally...Moisturize - also 'nuf said.

Have a lovely Thursday...which means it's almost Friday and I can get through anything on a Friday.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Paul Movie Review

Paul

Grade: B+

Got to see the movie "Paul" over the week-end and had a throughly good time watching it.  It was just what we needed to help get through another bout of winter here.

Paul is the story of two British self professed "nerds", who head to Vegas to attend ComicCon and then take off in a RV...to visit all the significant extra-terrestrail sites accross the American Southwest.  While visiting Area 51, they witness a car crash where they meet Paul, an alien needing their help to escape "The Big Guy".

The nerds, played brilliantly by Simon Pegg and Nick Frost are longtime friends who have written and starred in several other movies including Shawn of the Dead and Hot Fuzz.  In fact, they wrote the script for "Paul" as well.

Despite the cute little alien guy (voice by Seth Rogen), this is not a movie for the little ones, but the R rating would have probably told you this.  This is an irrevrant quirky movie with more than a dash of the dry British wit.  Personnally, I love British humor, but I know it's not everyone's cup of tea (hahahaha..just made a little pun). 

If you have a bit of nerd in you at all, you will love all the little subtle Sci-Fi references throughout the movie.  Plus there are lots of bit roles played by some of my favs including Jane Lynch. 

Friday, March 18, 2011

Friday Ramblings and A Question...or Two

Spring certainly seems to be here in the Midwest...or it is the North.  I never know what part of the country we are.  When you think of Michigan...how do you think of us?  It might seem trivial, but it's not.  While growing up I was never able to identify which kind of girl I was when listening to "California Girls" by the Beach Boys.  Am I the Mid-West Farmers daughter or am I the Northern girl.  This dilemma,  may well have set the ground work for a lifelong identity crisis.  So...what is Michigan to you? 

While we are speaking of girls and growing up, something else has been on my mind a bit lately which I feel the need to share. 

As a girl learns to drive, one of the first things she ends up learning (and very quickly, I might add), is to avoid making eye contact with any cars next to you.  It only takes a time or two of some guy hanging out his tongue, making kissing faces or pointing "down there" to get her to whip her head straight ahead and keep it there.

I clearly remember having this conversation with Cait when she was in high school.  I was driving and she was in the front passenger seat.  All of a sudden she yells out, "Ewwww!"  Some guy just made a lurid face at her.  When I asked her why she made eye contact (as I had already taught her this rule of the road), she said " I know...I forgot".  Trust me...she doesn't forget anymore.

This has all been brought to my attention by the fact that my Significant Other,  (lovingly call BW, here on the blog), who looks at every driver as he passes by.  Just one of his habits.  One day I told him that there was no way he would be able to do this if he were a woman.  He asked me "Why not?" (Isn't that sweet...he doesn't even begin to realize the grossness of many in his gender.)  When I explained the female rules of the road, he was shocked.  Kept saying..."Really?"

So, I ask you...women of the blogging world...did you learn at an early age to keep your eyes on the road and avoid eye contact?  Or are Cait and I just...weird?

That's it for now.  There does seem to be something else I wanted to discuss with you...but...nope, it's not there.  Hopefully it will come to me.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Happy St. Patty's Day

Here are the St. Patty's Day treats I made for Ryan to take to school.  (Again...used my manual settings on my camera.)

And...today is my 2nd Bloggerversary.  I've been blogging for two years and it's still as fun as when I started.

Have a great St. Patty's Day and I hope you are wearin' some green.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Grilled Romaine

I just made this and it was so freakin' good.  Here's how to make it and believe me, you want to make this.

I got the idea for this from one of my favorite restaurants.  It's called Cafe Muse and if you live in the area, you simply must go there.  It's in Royal Oak and we went there for dinner with some friends and Moe had this as her salad.  She gave me a bite and I couldn't get over how good it tasted.

I finally got the urge to make this myself and here's what I did:

Ingredients:
  • Romaine Hearts
  • Olive Oil
  • Salt and Pepper
  • Grated Parmesan Cheese
Wash one of the romaine hearts.  Slice down the middle, keeping the root attached to hold the leaves together.  Dry as well as you can.  

Heat a griddle or pan on medium.  Brush one side of the romaine with olive oil and season to taste with salt and pepper.  When the pan is hot, place the oiled side down on the griddle.  Brush the other side with olive oil and season.  Cook each side for 3-4 minutes until it browns a bit.  Remove and sprinkle thoroughly with grated Parmesan Cheese.

Drizzle with dressing of your choice.  I used the Lemon Vinaigrette recipe I made a couple weeks ago and it was perfect.

Oh..yum!

Thursday, March 10, 2011

And yes Donna...I went to see James Again

As I was drifting off to sleep last night, I counted how many times I've seen James Taylor and I've officially moved to double digits.  I've seen him 10 times.  The previous time was last May when James and Carole did their Troubadour Reunion Tour.

Last night, in a barren E. Lansing (MSU is on Spring Break), we got to see a more personel show as James performed with his son Ben.  It was spectacular .  I enjoyed hearing Ben sing and perform many of his own songs, plus James actually did a few songs I didn't know.  I like it when he mixes up his playlist.

Ben has a strong physical resemblence to his father, but I found his voice and a few of his songs a little more like his Uncle Livingston.  There was a very funny song about his longing for a particular girl, but who he couldn't go after her cause "her boyfriend is just so darn nice".  He also wrote another song for his 10 year old brothers that was very touching.

James was of course...wonderful.  I am so mad at myself for forgetting my camera.  We had 5th row seats and no one sat in front of me.  I could have snapped my little heart away.  But...never fear, my clever daughter was able to capture a little video on her phone for your listening and viewing pleasure. (It's short, so don't be too disappointed.)




Last night was particularily special as I got to take Krissy.  I've taken Caity before, but for whatever reason, Krissy has never been with me to one of his concerts.  As I watched James beam with pride as his son performed, it was only right that I had one of my children there with me.  "James, I know how you feel."

Monday, March 7, 2011

Rango Movie Review

Rango

Grade: C+

With all the recent Academy Awards hype, it's surprisingly challenging to find a good movie to go to this time of year.  There seems to be a bit of a drought at the moment, so we headed out to see Rango

I was actually pleased to find out that this movie was done in 2D.  I think the whole 3D thing is a little over used.  Not every movie benefits from being shot in 3D.

Rango is the story of a lizard (voiced by Johnny Depp), that gets inadvertently lost in the desert.  It's there he finds the desolate city of Dirt, populated by every sort of desert critter possible.  With his vivid imagination and acting talents (yes, Rango fancies himself an actor), he quickly becomes the new sheriff.  The story rolls out rather predictably from there.

On the upside...this movie is really well drawn.  The detail associated with some of the critters is amazing.  The voice characterizations are also very well done.  Depp makes a great Rango and I enjoyed Bill Nighy's turn as Rattlesnake Jake.

On the downside...this is a slow moving movie with a storyline aimed more at the adults in the audience.  In addition, with the inclusion of a "damn", "hell" and "son of a SQWAK" inserted, it is not really appropriate for little ones.  I think they'd be a bit bored anyway.

Netflix this one unless you need to get out of the house and see a movie.  I wonder if the Adjustment Bureau would have been a better choice??