Wednesday, October 30, 2013

What would your High School Self Think of Your Current Facebook Page?

I just finished reading The Future of Us, by Jay Asher. It is set in 1996.  When 2 friends download an AOL CD onto their computer, they gain access to their 2011 Facebook accounts.  They try and change their actions to manipulate their futures.

I found the book completely fine, but I am fascinated by the idea.  I put myself in the mindset of my teenage self and checked out my FB page.  My teenage self would have thought she scored the jackpot.  My kids are adorable and my husband is really hot.

-I would be surprised how athletic my kids are (I can not do anything requiring the smallest amount of coordination).

-I would be shocked that my husband is in the military-after being raised an Army brat, that's something I swore I'd never do.  

-I would like my future and not want to change it but I hope that if my teenage self saw me at 40, she would could deal better with some of my teenage heart aches and other problems.  

-My life is great, but my FB page is probably paints a rosier picture than reality.  I tend to only posts about triumphs, funny stuff, and the occasional minor annoyance.  I don't post about the more mundane parts of being a mom or the times when someone hurts my feelings. 

Your turn.  Pretend you are  your teenage self and go check out your FB page. 

What would your teenage self think of your FB page?

What would surprise your teenage self the most?

If your teenage self saw her future FB page, would she do anything to change it?

Does your FB page paint an accurate picture of your life?

Monday, October 28, 2013

DIY Brain Cap

I am always on the look for cheap and easy Halloween costumes and was thrilled to find the tutorial for this gory brain cap on Make Craft.  

Basically all you need is an old hat and 2 tubes of latex caulk.  I found some at Wal-Mart for $1.29 a piece. We had a hospital gown in the dress up box, so this entire look cost about $2.58.

In case you'd like to make your own, here are some tips:

1. Place the hat on a bowl before you use the caulk. I ignored this step, dropped my first attempt on the counter and had to throw it in the trash:(  Since I only had one old ball cap, I used a straw hat.  It was stiffer and easier to work with, but the brain goes a little further down than I'd like. However, since he is weeks past a hair cut, this worked to our advantage.  If I cut his hair, I plan on trimming an inch or 2 off the bottom before Halloween.

2. It takes forever to dry, so plan ahead and give yourself at least 48 hours drying time.  Mine is still squishy.

3.  It weighs a ton.  I don't think this would be a good a costume for a small kid. (Someone commented on the original post that they used insulation foam-maybe that would be better)

4.  Because the caulk is so heavy, it will look a little melted on the sides.  I had nice neat little brain squiggles, but after gravity took effect, they looked a little saggy.  Maybe I should have used more expensive caulk?

 My kids went to a Halloween party on Saturday night and by accident, they all had a medical theme going. 

 In the family tradition of being-some-obscure-character-so-you-have-to-explain-who-you-are-all-night (see the last 12 year's worth here), my daughter went as the nurse from Granite Flats.  My son's best friend threw on a pair of scrubs as a last minute costume. 

Voila, now they were ready to perform brain surgery in the cul-de-sac.
 In case you were wondering-Nurse from Granite Flats

I wanted to show you his complete look-he was very proud of his R2D2 socks.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Mary Poppins Bookclub

It was my turn to host book club. Since I've never read the books and I am excited about the upcoming movie Saving Mr. Banks, I chose Mary Poppins.  Because I am a big nerd,  I also read Mary Poppins She Wrote by Valerie Lawson.

This is probably book blasphemy, but I really like the movie and Broadway musical better than the book.  The books are more like a collection of adventures then a story with a plot.  One of my book club friends read them allowed to her son and that is probably how they best to be enjoyed.

Mary Poppins She Wrote was really hard for me to get through. So you don't have to suffer through it, here's some things I learned:

She was born Helen Lyndon Goff on 9 August 1899  and died on 23 April 1996.

Much to her chagrin, she was born and raised in Australia, but always took pride in being British. She didn't actually move to England until she was in her 20's.

She fled England during WWII to the safety of the US. 

She was never married, but very likely had a few affairs with both men and women.

Her father was an unsuccessful banker and they often struggled with money and depended on the generosity of relatives.

She supported herself by acting, writing poetry, and as a play critic.

Mary Poppins umbrella is based on a real umbrella- one of the family’s servants-her mother thought it was terribly tacky,but Travers thought it was fabulous.

She had many gurus in her life and had a constant search for peace and truth.

She suffered with both lung and digestive problems.

She never married, but had an adopted son.  He was a twin and never told him anything about his birth family until he actually met his twin when he was 17.

For the film rights, she received $100000 down payment and 5 % if the producer’s growth.  She made millions.

Travers insisted the following be in the film: the tape measure, Mr. Banks in Pajamas, and the fact that she hated tapioca.

Travers wanted all the actors to be British.

She didn’t like how the Banks family was portrayed.  She didn’t want them to be portrayed as unhappy-just out of sorts.

She hated it that Mr. Banks tore up the children’s advertisement in the movie.  She insisted a loving parent doesn't tear up their children's work.

The original movie was to be set in modern times, but Traver's insisted it be set in Edwardian times (I am so glad).

Travers was offended when people called her a children's author and said  that fairy tales had “great things to teach us” and they were “carriers of a very old teaching, a religion, a way of lie, a chart for a man’s journey”.

She heartily approved of Julie Andrews.

Book Club Treats
 Mrs's Cory's Gingerbread stars -recipe HERE
 Mary Poppincorn
Union Jack Fruit Pizza

I just baked a sheet of my favorite sugar cookie dough (recipe HERE).  Then whipped together 1/3 cup sugar, 1 8oz cream cheese and a tsp. of vanilla. Spread on top of cooled cookie and topped w/ fruit.  Please tell me it looks like the British flag.

Here's some discussion question for book club:
1.  What did you like better about the book?
2. What did you like better about the movie?
3. In the original chapter of “Bad Tuesday”, they visited people, but Travers revised it to animals to make it more politically correct. Thoughts?
4. Travers said that she didn't write for children. Thoughts?
5. Is there a chapter that you would have like to seen in the movie?
6. The movie follows more traditional plot lines, the Banks family is in crisis, and Mary Poppins helps them become a stronger family.  The book is more a series of adventures.  Do you think the movie would have been as successful without following traditional plot lines?
7. Travers claimed that fairy tales had “great things to teach us” and they were “carriers of a very old teaching, a religion, a way of lie, a chart for a man’s journey”. 202
8. Travers viewed Mary Poppins as a “conduit..through her people found balance and a sense of their true worth.”  236 Do you agree?
9. Do you think the movie would have been as popular if Mary Poppins was plain and not as beautiful as Julie Andrews?
10.  Disney enlarged the role of Bert, because he didn’t think that Mary Poppins could carry the film all on her own.  Thoughts?

If you love Mary Poppins, check out my daughter's Halloween costume and umbrella tutorial HERE.

Monday, October 21, 2013

Free Reads!

We move around a lot. I told my husband I can be happy anywhere as long as I can find a good book club. Two of my very best book club friends ever have been doing some pretty amazing things.

First, my friend Alicia just started a new site: The Search for a Great Book Starts with Chapter One!

It is a great website where you can read the first chapter of a book for free, before you decide to buy the entire book.  

Next my friend Stephanie actually wrote an entire book-  A Flutter of Butterfly Wings.

Lorelei has the life every teenager dreams of: a kick butt attitude thanks to karate, an awesome boyfriend, Zane, and supportive, loving parents. And, well, what else is there?
Her life shifts when she tries on a pair of sunglasses at a vintage store and is transported back in time. There she witnesses a young mother and her child in grave danger. She recognizes the young mother as her own grandma and the child is her mom. The vision ends with a gun shot.
It’s not long until they discover that family secrets aren't meant to be kept. With help from Zane, they begin to piece together what happened in her grandma’s past, just as the present begins to unravel. They soon realize that history has a way of repeating itself.
Doesn't that sound like something you'd like to read?
You can  check out the first chapter HERE or read the entire book HERE.

UPDATE: I failed to mention that you must first log on to Swoon Reads to read her book.  It's basically a site to help aspiring authors get their books published, but it is free to read any book on the site. If you are interested, you can read more about the site HERE.

Saturday, October 12, 2013

My favorite Fall Projects

I am in the final few weeks of training for my marathon and so I have been doing absolutely nothing blog-worthy. 

 All I do is run-I ran 20 miles yesterday.  (Can I get a "Woot-woot" or a "You go girl").  

I am in the mood to make some fabulous costumes, but I have yet to be inspired.  My youngest has his heart set on being the pineapple from Psych and my daughter wants to be a 1950's nurse.  My goal is to try and talk them into something else.

In case you need some inspiration, here's some fall posts that I have done in the past. 

  The Blue Man Group   

 Mary Poppins    

My Family's Costumes 

Fall Mantel    

    Corn Husk Pompons    

Harry Potter Books   
  Spider Pocket Pillows      
 Candy Corn Candle Trio    

 Bat Pillow

Gross out Feast

Batty Lights

Cheesy Candy Corn

Candy Corn Pillow


Tuesday, October 1, 2013

What I've Been "Listening to" Lately

I am currently on week 26/30 for my marathon training.  This means that essentially all I do these days is run and recover from running.  

I am not a runner and scoff at people that list running among their hobbies.  I am also really slow, so it takes me considerably longer to complete my runs than actual runners.  Friday, I ran 18 fun-filled miles. Including stretching, it took me just shy of 4 hours.  

4 hours is a long way to drive a car.  4 hours is a ridiculously long way to run, especially if you HATE to run.  Listening to music only entertained me so long and so I started to listen to audio books.  I run a little slower, but at least it has help me keep running and not imploding from sheer boredom.

I've been listening to a lot of books by Sarah Dessen.  They all are about a teenage girl, who is somewhat of a social misfit and struggles with the relationship she has with her parents.  She always meets an amazing boy, who helps her to come out of her shell and to become the type of girl she has always wanted to be.  There are no surprises and everyone lives more or less happily ever after. There is just the right amount of teenage angst to keep things interesting.  

I was a little surprised by the amount that I've read, but I've read all these:

What Happened to Goodbye
Keeping the Moon
The Truth About Forever
Just Listen
Lock and Key
Along For the Ride

I was going to tell you which one was my favorite, but they are all pretty much the same and a perfect running distraction.  Have you read any of her books?