Tag Archives: movies

Thought-Collage Thursday // A Bountiful Bunch of Dis-jointed Reflections

I don’t even know what that title means.

In the back yard yesterday 1

In the back yard yesterday

Except, I do have thoughts. That is why – this blog.  But sometimes life is careening with such force and speed, the thoughts, the observations and ideas – well, they just zoom on by and I can only retain the barest interpretation of them.

Such is this week.


I get so romantic about the autumnal  season

In the back yard yesterday 2

Also the back yard yesterday. No kidding – I got to see all these colors including that Colorado blue sky!

I go out in the cool breeze of night and watch the leaves drifting down and start composing silly poetry in my head like this:

When the breeze picks up and the leaves fall down

And the Jack ‘O Lanterns are scowling all around town…

There is actually much more, and maybe one day I’ll share it with the grandbebes, but I’m no poet. I know it.  ;) So for today, we’ll leave it here. Bet you’re wondering what was going to happen, aren’t you?

In the back yard yesterday 3

Which leads me to this question: Would Dr. Seuss be able to find a publisher these days? I mean – he just made up words to make them rhyme.

See how random things just barrel through?


The song of the month: Autumn Leaves {of course}

I love the song. I first loved the song, as a child, when I heard Roger Williams piano version (my Grandma gave me his album). To find it had actual words, not that many years ago, was a bonus. It was originally in French (1945), and all the greats have recorded it. Jo Stafford (one of my favs) was first, but then Edith Piaf (who did both an English and a French version), Diana Krall (she makes all songs amazing), Nat King Cole, Frank Sinatra, Jerry Lee Lewis, Eric Clapton – they all have recorded it. Eva Cassidy, too.

In the back yard yesterday malakai not wanting to pose

Kai did not want to model

And I have spent the entire month of October singing it and plunking around on the keyboard playing it. Rocky told me to come to his office and he’d play the guitar and mix my voice (read: tune me up and make me sound good) in his studio. But who has time for that? Neither he nor I.


I get more wordy and gooey each autumn

I have been blogging since 2006, so you’d think by now I wouldn’t have a clue what all I have said. But I always do recall, each fall, that I get a little more, shall we say, descriptive, come autumn. I become quite melancholy and overcome with passion for the season.

i feel like


  • I ponder autumn red, quote Marilyn Monroe and dissertate on being a woman in the autumn of her life. {{see here}}
  • In “Delicious Autumn,” I quote George Eliot and tumble head-over-heels into a sensory love affair with nostalgia – the sights, the smells, the tastes, the feels, the sounds of youth faded…while visiting my parents. Haha. {{see it here}}
  • I’ve often written about October being orange. But in looking back, I do also pay my respects to the reds of October. This one is an homage to red, to “a fully florid, cherry, sanguine scarlet.  A puce, a rufescent russet,  a bloody, blushing, gushing, infrared hot pink mixed with flaming chestnut and rubies and gleaming copper, all at once…shimmering and iridescent fuchsia, yet dense and heavy garnet, a ruby…bittersweet in both color and the evoking of raw autumn melancholy.” And etc! :)  {{see it here}}
  • Two years ago this very day, {{THIS}} was happening. The grandbebes and a little weather forecast.  I remember that light, those leaves…

kids in leaves 2012 10 23

Oh, there are many more fall, autumn, October posts. Some November, too. And miles of words down roads of the romance of the season. But I’ll let this part go with those few examples.


I voted.

Oh how I love getting to vote in the convenient  location of my home. And mailing it in…wait, did I remember to mail it? I will say that I wish I could change one of my amendment-issue votes because I researched a bit more later and I think I may have been…*w*r*o*n*g*!??

That is (1) highly unusual, and (2) growth for me…to think that I maybe/might have been/possibly was/super-small chance that I was ever-so-slightly wrong, but instead of demanding a fresh ballot, I’m just going with the flow. It is what it is. And really, in light of SO MANY OTHER PEOPLE VOTING WRONG ALL THE TIME, this one minor issue is of little consequence.  Just kidding…about other people’s votes. Maybe.

So now, if all the political ads would kindly remove themselves from my presence. Thank-you very much.


Loved her book!

Oh, and I won’t tell you how I voted. No. You couldn’t guess if you tried because I am an independent. Do not try to fence me in!

BUT if she wants to hire me for her campaign, “Carly Fiorina for President!”  On women, 53% of voters: “We are not a special-interest, single-issue constituency. We are half the country.” up-project.org


I was in the country the other day

In the back yard yesterday 5

The burning bushes are on fire!

The cows were mooing and a tractor was motoring by. The smell of manure was in the air and a pretty gray cat with grass-green eyes came by to say hi {totally unaware that I am not a cat person, apparently}.  The sun was sweet and you could see miles of mountains from there. And even though life was happening all around and “town” was just 3 miles away, it was quiet. So quiet. I think I was made for the country.


A {Country Baby} came to see me.


Sawyer with Guini and Gemma

Two of them in fact, with their parents. Sawyer and Wryder were here visiting from Holyoke. That is country. The term Country Baby comes from one of my fav old movies, Baby Boom, with Diane Keaton. Do you remember that movie? I think that is a good movie to watch near the end of October.


Arsenic and Old Lace

arsenic cary grant

And always-always-always try to view Cary Grant in Arsenic and Old Lace near Halloween. Because. Cary Grant. He is hilarious in it and scary-good-looking!

It s such a great old black and white flick!


I miss my mom over there in Hoosier-land.

me and mom oct 6

I have been so busy I haven’t had a chance to tell you a million little details about my time in NW Indiana recently (in Chicago-land). It was so windy the last day there, but I held on to my mamala for dear life. In this photo I was thinking, “Oh I love her and I will miss her.” And I was so right. On both counts.


Since the Cardinals did not make the World Series, we are for the Kansas City Royals.


Got it? OK!

I love baseball. I miss my dad, too, because we watched a lot of baseball while I was there. But he can’t take seeing his teams lose, so we missed some great comebacks. Oh, pops.  ;) Cardinals forever, anyway!


I threw caution to the wind and listed my Jeanie-green ornate, Baroque, Italianate, solid wood, custom-built green coffee table on Craigslist.


I think I am changing my mind. Because, I mean – even the paint was custom-mixed for ME, to match a sliver of a piece of one of the grandbebe’s art pieces. I don’t know if I can let it go?



A thought about relationships…

Tara brought me a bouquet of flowers just before my birthday, more than 2 weeks ago. It was a huge bouquet of purple lilies, hydrangea, lavender statice, various mums and Gerber daisies.  Stormie brought me a big mums-filled bouquet a couple of days later, as seen on the coffee table, above (those fall mums will go on forever!).

purple bouquet, day 17

At day 17, the purple bouquet from Tara – a third of its original size, yet still lovely.

I have never been one of those women who needs her husband to bring her flowers, though I enjoy the surprise of them, like anyone. I get joy from growing things in the ground.

But both of these bouquets made me so happy and are still bringing me a smiles, light, bright joyful remembrances of warm thoughts and pure love shown towards me.

And while a fresh bouquet is glorious, people often throw the whole thing away when a few of the buds begin to age or drop. But you miss something when you do that. There is still so much beauty there. Yes, the “fussier” parts of the bouquet are long gone. But in just the minute or so it takes me daily to tend to the arrangement, to remove drooping leaves or a dead-headed flower, then to snip the ends and add fresh water, in less than a minute, I have revived the bouquet. It looks a little different each time, some of the filler going away, but its beauty remains and I get to enjoy them much longer.

It is the same with the people we love and the relationships that mean something. Even if things are different now than they once were, a love or friendship worth having is worth tending regularly.

You could just let it go to waste, throwing away wilting expectations and brushing off the dust of disappointment. But you could also decide to spend just a few minutes tending and repairing, loving and caring. And in a very short time you might be made glad by the beauty of it again. Maybe it won’t look like what it once did, as busy and full, but that is OK, too, I think.

Love with all you’ve got while you can.


There are so many leaves falling in this post, you may have to rake now.

I shall bring this to  close (I’m a preacher’s daughter and that’s what they all say), but of course, you NEED an autumn quote, yes? Then this, from F. Scott Fitzgerald, “Life starts all over again, when it gets crisp in the fall.” Remember, I told you? October is the new January!

life starts again

Happy Autumn and Magical Thursday to you!

See? Too many words! I just cannot stop myself…


Movies I have to see

Glen Campbell: I’ll Be Me // In theaters October 24, 2014

I love Glen Campbell, people. LOVE him. He is leaving us, one memory at a time, suffering the ravages of that awful thief: Alzheimer’s Disease. I missed his “Good-bye Tour,” but heard it was amazing. Now I’ll get to see it closer up than I could have. And it will be so amazing and it will make me sad.

The Judge // In theaters October 10, 2014

The cast, my friends – THE CAST! Story seems engaging and these actors, all together in one movie? MUST SEE!  {Robert Downey Jr, Robert Duvall, Vincent D’Onofrio, Billy Bob Thornton, among others} 

And I can’t believe I am saying this: Left Behind // In theaters October 3, 2014

IF I can get my mom to go along (she has only been to one movie since she joined a church as a young girl in the 1950s and they told her movies were baaaaaaaad – but she misses them)!


This one came out on September 5th. Anyone seen it? Should I? The Identical

It does have Ray Liotta and a RECORD PLAYER!

Let me know. What else should I see???

Three Nights Before Christmas

Three nights before Christmas and all over town, there is much to be done and so many sounds…

1.  Christmas with my family is pretty loud.

Christmas at our house was like a Donny and Marie TV Special” (who said that?). 

That cracks me up because it is like that for us, too.  Rare is the quiet tree-lit silent night, or a room full of heavenly peace for pondering and reflecting.  Even now, as I write this (on Monday night to be posted on Tuesday), it is late.    And yet, the rooms are brightly shining and daughters have materials and supplies spread everywhere, working on Christmas projects and finishing last-minute gifts.  They tease and cajole.  They drink coffee and break out into song, filling the air with movie quotes and remembrances in a thoroughly unpredictable rhythm.  Just now they are singing selections from the musical “Oklahoma,” for what reason, I do not know.  I’d like to tell them to go to their rooms and get to sleep, but am reminded they are here now by choice, a gift to me, something I treasure.  Let the madness remain.

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2.  I really do not like to shop.  But at this point, I have no choice.

I power-shopped for more than 10 hours Monday.  {sigh} I organized each person’s list according to every different retail establishment I would need to hit.  I mapped out a plan, gathered coupons and those “free money” cards I have collected from said establishments (like $10 off a $25 purchase at JCP, $10 off any purchase at Kohls!) into a folder.  I made sure to have my Starbucks giftcards for needed strength (did you know there is a company-wide shortage of caramel due to the popularity of the new Caramel Brulee Latte??!?) and most importantly, dedicated myself to having a good hair day because when you are going from morning to night, not having to worry about hair in imperative.  Then I told Dave: this isn’t a pleasure trip, you know.  The objective is to cross things off my list: quickly.

Several of my girls have asked for vintage/antique-type things so I added 3 thrift stores to my list, all within a short get-it-done radius.  When we arrived at the first one and I leapt from the car with notebook and pen in hand and started bounding toward the door at break-neck speed, Dave commented, “There.  See, honey?  This store was created just for you.”  For the big sign at the entrance read:  ARC Thrift Store ~ Shopping with a Purpose. 

Yes, I am a purpose-driven shopper. 

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3.  I will continue to complain about the weather.

It was too stinking hot.  It didn’t feel  like Christmas with the weather in the 50’s, which is seriously impeding my glorious songs of old.  But today, the temp has dropped!  Here is what I want:  Maybe the low 40’s with some big pretty snowflakes falling, but not on the streets-just along the sides so everything looks pretty and children can build men…and women.  And just cool enough so you can wear the cute hat and adorable scarf set some one has given you (along with the coordinating fingerless gloves), but you don’t really need bulky coats.  You know-cool enough that you’d look all New-England-wintry and Christmas-card-ish if you made a quick stop and took a few spins around the ice-skating rink while you were bustling about shopping, but not so cold no one can recognize you due to the outerwear overkill when, if you should fall, you would not, in fact, be able to get back up.  Is this really too much to ask for???

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Three movies that are not usually considered Christmas movies, but have great Christmas scenes in them:

[1] Funny Farm with Chevy Chase. [2]  About a Boy with Hugh Grant and [3] While You Were Sleeping with Sandra Bullock (omygosh, I LOVE this movie!).

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Three nights before Christmas, 3 French Hens, Three Wise Men, and three wishes from me to you:  peace, joy and love!

pictured: DP, Tara and Hunter’s tree farm adventure a couple of weeks ago. 

12 Great John Hughes Movies 12 Days Before Christmas

My Top Twelve (or 13)~

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  1. Christmas Vacation  “Eddie?…Eddie?!…Eddie?!?…If I woke up tomorrow with my head sewn to the carpet I wouldn’t be more surprised.”  C-l-a-s-s-i-c!  A must-watch every Christmas and I watched it last night – which is what made me think about John Hughes, the movie-maker.
  2. Sixteen Candles “By night’s end I predict me and her will interface.”  One of the most-quoted movies for our family.  “Fresh breath is a priority in my life.”
  3. The Breakfast Club ~ “Don’t you forget about me, don’t don’t don’t…”
  4. Planes, Trains and Automobiles   “Every time you go away, you take a piece of me with you…”  LOVE that song and that scene!
  5. Miracle on 34th Street (1994 version) ~ Though I am not a fan of remaking certain amazingly beautiful classics, and this would be one of those, he did do a colorful update and I cannot resist that sweet little Mara Wilson and the final scene in the gorgeous “catalog house”.  It is a feast for the eyes.
  6. Home Alone and  (6 1/2.) Home Alone 2: Christmas in New York ~ I’d be over these by now if I hadn’t ended up having very resourceful grandsons.  They could so pull this off!
  7. Uncle Buck~ My mom l-o-v-e-s this movie and John Candy is pretty irresistible.
  8. Some Kind of Wonderful ~ Which quote?  “You should consider whether or not you feel you can deliver the kiss that kills.”  Or: “You look good wearing my future.”
  9. Maid in Manhattan(writer) ~ Tagline:  This Christmas, love checks in,” plus Norah Jones on the soundtrack!
  10. Only the Lonely ~ The man (John Candy) a cop.  The woman – a lonely, shy funeral home worker. The mother, an overbearing, domineering woman who wants her son’s undivided loyalty.  Sweet.
  11. Ferris Bueller’s Day Off  “Life moves pretty fast. If you don’t stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it.”
  12. Pretty in Pink ~ “May I admire you again today?”


John Hughes.

He practically single handedly created the 1980’s “Brat Pack,” he wrote the teen-age angst of that time.  He portrayed the “average kid” with superior skill.  He captured the north-of-Chicago neighborhood as the great American hometown with wide, tree-lined streets and big warm-looking houses. He perfected the sights and sounds of chaotic family gatherings with multi-generational conversation going on.  He put the right songs in the right scenes, dealt gently with the less-than-beautiful in love, graced movie-goers with believable, flawed, but good-hearted characters.  We saw friendship develop, the underdog find love, Molly Ringwald become “the quintessential,” and Saint Bernards take over a household (the “Beethoven” movies, not listed above).

In a few short years, primarily through the 1980’s, the guy gave us great movies.  In 1991, disillusioned with Hollywood standards and extreme leftist thinking, he became a voting Republican and Illinois farmer and checked out of it all, only to write under a pseudonym.  He died in August of this year at 59.  I can’t help but think of him, especially at Christmas, because of how well and how beautifully he paid homage to Christmas in several of his films.  And how brilliantly he did it in “Christmas Vacation.”


Jeanie & Julie & Julia

I saw the movie again last night, for the second time, Julie and Julia.  And here is what I know: I will never be Julia Child, for I truly am one of those people who, though loving the fine meal, the meal that takes hours to prepare, will not use her time for that.

But I defy anyone to improve upon my lunch today.

From my garden: tender, young green beans, stir-fried with crushed garlic and barely salted, the savory flavor of them rivaling a fillet mignon.  A purple bell pepper sizzled into submission in extra-virgin olive oil.  Thick, perfectly round slices of zucchini browned to a caramelized sweetness, and seasoned just-so, so delectable it is hard to believe it is not a sin.

Accented by imported Greek Kalamata Olives, which have been soaking in olive oil and red wine vinegar just long enough, and a thick, soft chunk of cave-aged blue cheese cut from a hand-made wedge, which has been cured to its full potential, the blue veining a work of tongue-tingling art (and some sort of chemical reaction to the penicillin they use in its’ creation).

You would be hard-pressed to find a meal anywhere as delicious and beautiful as this for any price.  And done in 10 minutes, start to finish.

Had I added  tomato,   I fear it might have been too much heaven.

Favorite quote from Julie & Julia:  I could blog.  I have thoughts.

Loving the late-summer harvest…Jeanie

NOTE TO SELF:  Get another hobby besides food.

I was Twi-lighted

My girls flipped over the movie (I can’t even tell you how many times they saw it collectively) and then madly read all the books.   When the DVD was released yesterday, we had to re-arrange furniture, black out windows and generally cease from all other activity to watch Twilight.  Dave punched his hair up with product and put some of my foundation on (I am apparently paler) and some plum eye shadow under his eyes and mugged for the camera to make the girls laugh.  And we watched it with the girls (including Elise-the-Niece and Stef-with-an-f).

It is about vampires.  It is not a romance.  It is a love story (there is a difference).  It is also for much younger women than me, but I did enjoy the the line from Edward: Your scent is like a drug to me – like my own personal brand of heroin.  I mean, who wouldn’t want to evoke that kind of passion?  Elise happened to be wearing a t-shirt with the same quote.

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We kiddingly declared it another in a series of Dave’s birthday celebrations.  So, I finally saw it.  I was Twilighted.

NOTE:  Dave turns 50 tomorrow!  May I just say thanks to the Kansas farm girl who gave birth and let him go?  Thank-you for your courage and for doing the right thing.