Friday, October 30, 2015

Halloween

welcome


evil laugh resounds

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Book Review - Felicity by Mary Oliver

Book cover blurb sums it up
Our most delicate chronicler of physical landscape, Mary Oliver has described her work as loving the world. With Felicity she examines what it means to love another person. She opens our eyes to the territory within our own hearts, to the wild and to the quiet. 

This book is filled with joy. Economy of words, simple phrases - they all paint a wise picture of life and love.

Here are the opening lines to I Don't Want to Lose

I don't want to lose a single thread
from the intricate brocade of this happiness
I want to remember everything

Seek out Mary Oliver's poetry. It will give you a sense of peace and calm.
A soothing balm after a stress-filled day.

Monday, October 26, 2015

A Wedding

 Attended a very fancy wedding reception at the Belo Mansion in Dallas.
The groom cake was dramatic
 The wedding cake was gorgeous
 Flower arrangements were spectacular
 Ray and I cleaned up nicely on a Saturday night
The groom is a graduate of the Merchant Marine Academy. A man in a uniform with a sword to cut the cake offers dashing drama.

Oh so young.......I wish them much happiness, laughter, and good health. They certainly kicked off their new life together in high style.

Friday, October 23, 2015

Movie Review Madness - Crimson Peak

Crimson Peak is not normally my kind of movie genre – gothic romance/horror. However, the cast list is stellar and it is directed by Guillermo del Toro, who is a genius. Indeed, the film is lush and the settings are fabulous. The creepy house is worthy of an Oscar as it looms over a sparse countryside. Inside is another story – things go bump in the night and very dark misty ghosts haunt the corridor. Let’s just say, “Don’t drink the tea that’s served in the house.”  (spoiler alert – how much poison will kill you?)

So, Mia Wasikowska (a stellar young actress) falls hard for dreamy Tom Hiddleston’s  Baron.  Her father frowns and has a private investigator check into some shady dealings. It’s the late 1800’s and basically the father calls Thomas out at a ball. Well, alas, the dad ends up dead at his private club, Mia is an heiress, and she’s able to marry and move to the estate. Hoorah for true love. Boo for Dad’s death. Hoorah for true love. Boo for the creepy sister (a very severe Jessica Chastain) who comes with the house. Oh Mia – so na├»ve, so young, so eager to be friends with the sister and asks for a set of keys to all rooms.  What?  You dare to think you can roam this house freely and uncover its secrets?

Where money is involved, trouble follows, and Mia slowly figures out she’s a pawn in an evil game. The creepy factor is high and Crimson Peak offers a good scary ride in time for Halloween. Is it a tad predictable? Yes. However, I knew what I was in for when I paid my cheap matinee price. I was scared just right and came home to put on all the lights in the house. Rattle a key or two and explore the basement. You never know what bones will turn up.

Boo!

Thursday, October 22, 2015

Thoughtful Thursday - Ask a Question

Take the time today to ask a question. Actually listen and engage

Here's my story - was picking up shirts at the dry cleaners and the usual woman took care of me. We do general chitchat and I commented on the nice weather. She said, "Oh, I just got back from where it was rather cold."

"Where did you go? Vacation?"

She beamed. "Went to Nashville. My mother turned 80 and me and my four sisters hung out at my oldest sister's place. It's fabulous. She had matching pajamas for us, manicures set up, food, movies, etc."

Her enthusiasm made my day. I said, "Wow. That sounds great. Keep that vacation glow going."

You could tell she was still happy and also glad to talk about her fun.

So, wherever you are today, ask that one extra question.

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Wordless Wednesday



More from Saturday's trip to the Fort Worth Botanic Gardens and the conservatory

A bounty of colors, textures, and steamy tropical treats

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Movie Review - The Intern

The Intern is a Nancy Meyer film, and that means it’s glossy and pretty with great sets and a heartwarming story. The cool place to be is Brooklyn, and that’s where Jules (Anne Hathaway) has her nifty e-commerce fashion company – in a refurbed warehouse where no one has an office, she rides her bike to meetings, and everyone is young and dedicated.  Well, almost everyone is young. Robert De Niro (no longer a Godfather, he’s in grandfather roles with a crinkly smile) as Ben Whitaker needs a purpose to his life and applies for the senior intern program. Nattily dressed, complete with briefcase, he’s assigned to Jules. She’s ‘difficult and picky” and rolls her eyes at the thought of using this old dude to help her.

Well, of course, he’s wonderful. Everyone in the company looks to him for common sense wisdom, and finally Jules realizes he’s a good friend who’s looking out for her best interests. He can mend a broken marriage, and help the bottom line. The Intern is frothy fun with a nice story. It oozes charm and is New York eye candy. Anne and Robert are pleasant with a good rapport. I saw this movie at a cheap matinee price and was entertained. It’s a good rental or streamer date night. No need to think much. Just clock out, pour a glass of wine, and relax.



Monday, October 19, 2015

Good Morning Monday, Let's Reflect on Sunday

 Fall festival time at the Dallas Arboretum. This place is beyond fabulous.
Yes, we are blocking the mums - Evelyn, me, and Linda T
 Ray said we're the thorns - Ev, Erica, Linda, and yours truly
 Tons and tons of pumpkins everywhere.
 Gorgeous rose
Fall melange of colors.

October glory finally arrived with "cooler" temps and a touch of crispness in the air.

Have a good week everyone

Saturday, October 17, 2015

Silent Saturday at the Botanic Gardens

 Glorious day to meet a friend at the Fort Worth Botanic Garden. We strolled the grounds and then entered the conservatory. Lush exotic blooms greeted us

So peaceful

Friday, October 16, 2015

Movie Review Madness - The Martian

The Martian gets a huge thumbs up from me, and Matt Damon is excellent. We first meet our NASA team on Mars as they do their research jobs and live. Concern arises when ground control announces the arrival of a wicked dust storm. The crew is told to get situated and leave the mission a tad early. Jessica Chastain is the leader and it’s her call to lift-off after seeing Matt Damon (Mark) get hit by debris and knocked out. They assume he is dead, based on the situation. She did what she could and the team agrees, saddened by his passing.

Back on Earth, Jeff Daniels is the NASA head who has to announce the death of an astronaut. Meanwhile, back on Mars, the dust storm leaves and we hear a gasp and see movement as Mark regains consciousness. He’s injured, but alive. He manages to get back to their base, sew himself up, and assess his situation. He counts food bags, works on communications, and as a botanist he proclaims he needs to “Science the crap out of everything.” He’s rather matter of fact about the chance for death, but he plans to live as best he can for as long as he can. He has rover transportation, and figures out how to plant and grow potatoes to extend his nutrition.

Will he make contact with Earth? What happens then with NASA? Can he be rescued? What about his team who are flying home from Mars? Can they turn around? What about the Jet Propulsion Lab and math geniuses? Does the math work in regards to fuel and time calculations? And really….what could go wrong? (other than the only music Mark has is disco music left from Jessica)

The Martian does a great job with depicting the astronaut challenges for living.  Matt Damon brings such a nice manner to his role – he’s smart, funny, and very believable. He’s human and gives us the full range of emotions. The movie was a tad long – they could have tightened up some of the earth segments. But when Matt Damon is on screen, he holds our attention. 

 The Red Planet never looked so good.


Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Wordless Wednesday

Fall/Halloween spirit in the back yard. Glad these aren't real spiders!

Happy Wednesday.......and yes, I'm ready for the weekend already............

Monday, October 12, 2015

Monday Morning Stroll

Let's take a Monday morning stroll. This is around the block from my Dad's house. Big trees, lots of shade. I've logged a lot of miles by foot or bike on these streets.

Notice I actually posted a picture. My Friday crisis was just a question of browsers. With one click, Ray (my IT guru) got things rolling again. So, yes I can continue sharing my brilliance on blogger.

Or boring blather

Either way - let's have a splendid week


Friday, October 9, 2015

Trying Friday

technical issues kept me from posting a picture today and even the message

We updated to Windows 10 and now it's not happy with my browser or some such thing

So, my  brilliant post will have to wait.  I've been a tad out of whack anyway with my trip back east, and then playing catch up at work. If's not one thing, it's another.

Instead - let's just say Happy Friday and Have a Great Weekend

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Oh the Senior - fun part 1

I know I've been so serious with my Dad. I'm back in TX now. Yes, I escaped. He's in good hands with my brother and sister-in-law. Only 5 radiation treatments left. Then some disc surgery ahead.

But let me share a funny story. My dad is a clothes horse. Every closet, drawer, and possible space (under the bed) is filled with clothes. He shopped as therapy after my mom passed over twenty years ago.

So, we are headed to a radiation appointment. He's decided he needs a heavier jacket.

"The upstairs closet in the computer room - on the right - I need the light blue coat"

I run upstairs because the rule of thumb in a northeast home - no matter what you want, it's not on the floor where you stand. So upstairs, downstairs, and basement are fair game.

I open the closet door to find six variations of blue. I choose a very nice Nautica jacket and bound downstairs.

Sigh

"That wasn't the one I meant"

"Too late. We need to go."

I clip the tag and have him put it on. It looks darn spiffy, even if he's pouting.

Gotta go, gotta go.

"I need a different hat."  Ten zillion ball caps later, he picks the proper shade of blue.

And we're off................

More stories to come. He's a pip.

Monday, October 5, 2015

Long Time Friendship


All Sides of  Life 
by Joanne Faries
 

white haired and stooped
silver haired and slowing
two men breakfasted every Thursday
corn beef hash and wheat toast
pancakes and bacon
one coffee, one orange juice 

smiles on the side 

regular place, regular booth, regular chat
neighbors
originals to the neighborhood
catty-corner back lawn
past the one with the added hedge
no fences


history on their side 

kids, church, couples bridge
dinners, New Year’s, and Halloween
until the women passed
one sudden heart attack
one lingering cancer
widowers now retired 

no one by their side 

breakfast tradition began
only missed by vacation
an illness, snowstorm or two
years rolled by, friendship grew
common ground trod
eggs or French toast variation 

biscuits on the side 

one met a lady friend
moved to senior home
the other stayed with his roots
Thursday breakfast remained
tradition upheld
until the call came 

farewell from bedside 

my dad’s good buddy
gone now, sad to say
fifty-five years of friendship
hard to fathom these days
no more breakfast tickets
hearty laughs or retread tales 

stay at home on Thursdays now 

stay inside
 
 
 
(Dedicated to Mr. Thompson - he shall be missed - and to my Dad)

 

 

 

 

Saturday, October 3, 2015

Smaller World

It's been an eye opening week at my Dad's in PA. His world is a lot smaller in a very short period of time due to some health issues. Now we are working to improve this situation, but I think with the two steps back that he's taken, it shall be only one step forward. A new plateau.

This is tough for a very very active senior. You can slide downhill fast.
The uphill climb is a lot harder

I will be exploring this more once I'm back in TX.

Meanwhile, head up, laugh, and go take a walk around the block.

Enjoy your weekend and do stuff you really want to do

Thursday, October 1, 2015

Movie Review: Spy


Here's a review I never posted. Now this is out on DVD,etc.  Enjoy

CIA analyst Susan Cooper (Melissa McCarthy) is the brains behind Bradley Fine (Jude Law). She’s in his ear as he covers the globe in daring spy adventures. Unfortunately, Fine’s been killed (??) by Bulgarian arms dealer (Rose Byrne) and it’s time for Susan to get out in the field and track her. No one knows Susan, so she’s the best CIA option. From the James Bond-like opening credits of Spy to the closing credits, this movie is a hilarious romp. It’s a hoot.  

McCarthy is funny physically and verbally. She’s believable as a spy who’s making it up as she goes along and ends up “befriending” Rayna while saving her life. Byrne’s Rayna is over the top funny with a ridiculous hair-do and accent. As they criss-cross Europe together pulling together funds and making contacts, the laughs (and bodies) pile up. Who’s on to whom? What crazy scheme will Cooper pull now? She has her CIA boss, Allison Janney at wit’s end with assorted shenanigans. Meanwhile, Cooper’s British co-worker joins her and she’s hilarious. Jason Statham has gone CIA rogue and he’s a help and hindrance in the plot twists.  

I can’t explain more. I liked Spy a lot for its silliness and for Melissa McCarthy’s performance. She carried this flick and is worthy of good comedic scripts.  Get your passport stamped and your stomach ready for belly laughs.