Tuesday, February 26, 2008
Cute as a button!
Granted, I got my txt msg from the University around 5:15am saying morning classes were cancelled - and that unless further noticed, classes would resume at noon. I want MORE snow so that EMPLOYEES get the day off too!!!
Mom and dad have been talking about coming down late this week and visiting through the weekend, altho mom kept saying that might not happen if the storm's bad. Trust me, this is Tuesday - by Thursday there will be little sign of this storm.
These heirloom seeds come from www.TomatoFest.com - which I've surprisingly never heard of before, but you KNOW I'll be checking it out! Looks like I'll be getting (clockwise from top right) Dagma's Perfection, Black Cherry (which I had the last two years), Tobolsk, Sunset's Red Horizon and Black Prince.
Definitely spend some time checking out Cynthia's site - she's constantly got great gardening info, and will expose you to some of the coolest veggies you're going to want to grow!
Hm, now I've gotta figure out how to claim my seeds...I don't think I got the email she sent out...
Sunday, February 24, 2008
And I'm really, really worried! Sounds like even Gillian Anderson and David Duchovny are having a hard time getting back into their roles?
PS - yes, that poster is from their last (first) movie...no visuals to pull from the new stuff yet.
Saturday, February 23, 2008
I did feel I SHOULD like it because I've always been a fan of Claire Danes ('My So-Called-Life' anybody?!) and Michelle Pfeiffer, plus I love me some good fantasy, but not having had any friends recommend it, I was skeptical. Then again, it's based on a comic by Neil Gaiman (and I looooved his Sandman and Death titles! Still have my Death t-shirt from...wow...mid-90s?). Oh, and it's even got Robert DeNiro in a very...entertaining role!
Instead we got a very entertaining movie with beautiful scenery (some on par with Lord of the Rings!), good acting, and, oh yeah, introduced to hottie mchottie Charlie Cox...
And a number of scenes in the movie, especially the following one, looked like they could've been taken straight out of a Charles Vess illustration. I've had other stuff illustrated by Charles Vess (even wrote him a fan letter once in my younger days!), and have always loved his work.
I highly recommend you consider renting or buying this movie. In the meantime, I'm going to see about getting my hands on either the graphic novel/collection, oooor see if it was originally a novel.
Wednesday, February 20, 2008
More info here... (with some cryptic pics)
Oh yeah, I think I'm gonna need this!
Tuesday, February 19, 2008
I've gotta say, I'm honestly surprised an X-Men spin-off movie is gonna happen. TWO even, if what I've read is right (Wolverine and Magneto). Here's the latest blurb on the Wolverine movie - and the cast is getting kinda interesting! I love me some Liev Scheiber and Ryan Reynolds!
Three more members of the cast for X-Men Origins: Wolverine have been revealed.
According to Variety, Ryan Reynolds, who starred as Hannibal King in Blade: Trinity, has joined the Wolverine cast. He is believed to be playing Deadpool in the film. Reynolds has long expressed an interest in the character.
Fox has yet to confirm Reynolds' casting, but did confirm that Taylor Kitsch of NBC's Friday Night Lights will be playing Gambit.
Hip-hop artist will.i.am is also part of the cast, according to Variety.
They join a cast that includes Hugh Jackman as Wolverine, Liev Scheiber as Sabretooth, Danny Huston as William Stryker and Lynn Collins as Silver Fox. The film has already begun shooting under the direction of Gavin Hood for a May 1, 2009 release.
The film has already begun shooting under the direction of Gavin Hood for a May 1, 2009 release.
Maybe they're a little hard to see, eh? That's just 'cause they're not in bloom yet. Give it time, give it time...
Here it is, mid-February, and it's time to get ready for spring and summer!! YAY! SEEEEEEDS!
Brett picked up a folding table for me, and I assembled the plastic shelving, plus set up the 'picnic table' that is part of the trunk area of the Honda CR-V. Tidied up a bunch of last year's seed starting stuff, got organized, wet down some soilless seed starting mix, alphabetized all the seed packs (some dating back to 2004! I'm not holding my breath on those), and finally got my hands in the (non-)dirt!
Here's one side of the basement, with my planting area, the plants we got from Saturday's gardening symposium, and the "potting shed" sign mom gave me some time back.
The opposite side of that part of the basement. I'm definitely going to need to get more lights. And maybe another heat mat or two? (And I wonder how soon the feds will be knocking on our door, asking if I'm growing marijuana!)
Some of the seeds I've been working with are SOOOO small! These are nemesia seeds...something I've never grown from scratch, but they're too expensive to get each year as individual plants if I can grow my own!
I need to think about starting eggplants, peppers and tomatoes real soon, not to mention more annuals and perennials. Hm, should also consider starting lettuce maybe?
As always, Simon the Ruiner wants to be involved!
And anytime you're doing anything in the basement, there's always got to be some supervision (aside from Simon the Ruiner being directly involved):
I didn't touch these photos up at all! Tucker's eyes are just real creepy with the flash.
Tucker also gets real playful on the steps - so that's about the only exercise we can convince him to try.
These unfinished socks are looking more like leg warmers at the moment. Hmmm...that gives me an idea:
Or, maybe not. Do you think I could pull it off if I knitted up a pair of magical, homemade leg warmers? Like, hey, if a top hat can bring a snowman to life, why not!? Stranger things have happened...
Ok, guess I'll go back to the original plan to just make myself a pair of socks. I've finished the calf part on each, not really using a pattern yet. They both still have three double-pointed needles (DPNs) in them holding my spot until I get brave enough to start on the heel. I tried doing a mini practice sock a few weeks back, and it was uuuuugly! But I didn't have any real "personal investment" in that way - no way was I going to wear it. It would've fit a baby. Maybe. A club-footed baby. These are looking WAY better...
Sure, they look a little malformed/short right now because I can't pull them all the way over my foot with all the DPNs still in, but they'll get there... It still amazes me that I can turn a string into something like this!
And, as usual, Simon the Ruiner had to be a part of the photo shoot.
Wow, exposed hairy calves... Making me eager for shorts weather and summer time!
And then, in my search for the perfect Flashdance video I came across this... WTF!? (Looks like Irene Cara was still holding up well whenever this was filmed)
Oh - and yeah - I really am knitting stuff now. Not too much yet, and nothing great. I still need to post pics of Brett wearing the first (not-so-good) hat that'll go to my niece Emma, and the better replacement hat (which Brett says is still a bit big around - looking like he's wearing a "Blossom" (the tv show) hat...). I think what I really enjoy about the knitting also is I feel tv-watching time is less WASTED time since I can do both. If only I could knit and read at the same time!
Sunday, February 17, 2008
Some of the acting was pretty painful. Some of the effects, like showing KITT driving along a road off in the distance, when you could CLEARLY see it was a fake car (and bad fake shadow) superimposed onto the road, were particularly bad. And I have to say I'm tired of shows where it's "night time", and yet you can see shadows from the sun, light on people's faces, etc - where they clearly filmed during the day and just filtered/altered it afterwards.
All that griping aside (there was more from Brett), I'm sorta kinda intrigued. I'm not sure a show like this would last long on TV in 2008... We know it was just a 2 hr movie, but it was clearly set up to try and spin off a regular series.
Yesterday was the 8th Annual Gardening Symposium, sponsored by the Beech Creek Botanical Garden & Nature Preserve, with this year's theme "Cultivating the Green Life." The event is held at the amazing R.G. Drage Career Center in Massilon, OH... I went two years ago with Mary and Cindy from work, and we skipped last year (it's not the cheapest event, plus similar topics to the year before). This year Mary convinced me we both needed a serious hit of garden time in the middle of winter. Cindy's no longer here, but Mary's aunt expressed interest in joining us. Here's the flyer if you're interested in seeing the class/workshop/lecture offerings.
The garden symposium was fun, and, surprisingly, we didn't spend too much. I spent $8 at the vendors. And I actually took something like $70 with me. But realize, it was more a series of lectures/workshops which we'd already paid for, lunch (again, already paid for) and then a small area of venders. I bought two small scented geraniums - one apple, one lemon - $4 each. I was TEMPTED to buy a big bag of worm castings, but resisted. Got a handful of packs of free (year old) seeds - peppers, cukes, pumpkins, marigolds, etc. Plenty of reading material to go along with notes we took in the sessions, plus recipes, URLs to check, etc.
The "French without Fuss" was hosted by a very gay (but entertaining and educational) guy from one of the popular local (altho not Kent/Rootstown-local - more out where Brett's parents live) grocery store chains, Buehlers. His little stuffed-phyllo bites (cream cheese, gruyere (spelling's blanking on me), mushrooms, curry, etc were great. The brie, chicken and spinach soup was pretty good, altho a touch salty (at least I didn't mind the brie - whenever I've tasted just the cheese, I hate it). The coq a vin (sp?) was DRYYYY with boneless skinless chicken breast (which he warned us about - saying normally it should be made with cut-apart chicken with the bones, skin, etc - but when cooked ahead for the workshop, boneless is easier), and the wines in it were too strong. And then the kick ass dessert - a no-bake chocolate "cake" (more like a cross between mousse and fudge, as he described it) with 8 eggs, lotsa butter, etc, and then it had a spritz of whipped cream in a can (I know, I know) and a freshly made raspberry coulis (sp?) - just raspberries, lemon juice and sugar, pureed and strained of seeds. I tell ya - I was about to lick the rest of that with the choc smears and whipped cream off the plate!!!!
We had a propogation workshop where we got to get our fingers dirty - they showed us planting seeds, dividing, taking cuttings, etc - nothing new or hard, but hey, we get new plants out of it! ;-) I made sure one of the transplants I brought home was catnip for the cats...which they haven't found yet. This course was hosted by the wonderful owners of Lily of the Valley Herb Farm, in Minerva OH. I wish they had a web site. The husband does all sorts of wonderful teachings, and is an excellent instructor. He and his wife were obviously hippies in the 70s - there was even reference to him growing stuff that's not legal now... ;-)
The keynote was all about how American's have moved so far from their heritage they don't realize they practically have a meal in their yards, with everything we consider "weeds", spraying them when we could be eating them... This guy also makes a coffee-replacement with dandelions - Dandy Blend. (Ugh, awful site!) His lecture was VERY educational and entertaining, and I wish I would've had him as a botany instructor years ago (especially since some of his students got to go to England to see a more natural way of living off've the environment)
Another very educational, but not as entertaining, lecture was the one on soil structure. Every time I use my tiller (and I WILL use my tiller) I'll feel guilt about not necessarily doing the right thing to improve my soil structure. Hey - I'm the first to admit I go for the quick fix on stuff, and tilling isn't necessarily the best choice...
The "get butterflies into your backyard" lecture was awful, with a weird couple that sort of competed with each other to talk about how they're planting all these local/native plants in their yard, with no grass as far as I could tell. Weirdos. But they showed some cool pics and a great video of a monarch undergoing transformation.
I wish I had pics from the event to show, but no such luck. Maybe I'll show pics of my growies from the propogation workshop as they grow and develop!
I think I need to go play with my seeds packs and start some new growies!
Thursday, February 14, 2008
Visually - well, that's another story! Must be the harness, and the more-often-than-not big chairy chest, and those cool wings (removable, mind you, as they were just attached to the harness!). When we were kids and playing superhero, I KNOW I played Hawkman sometimes, but then it didn't seem he had much more going for him than flight...and seriously, MOST heroes have some sorta fast mode of transportation these days (more often than not, flight).
Compare the upcoming animated version above to the more rough and tumble ones that follow.
And while looking for decent pics of Hawkman (not easy to find the era I was looking for), I came across this site which makes me a little embarrassed/nervous about my own comic book geekdom!
Then, the other day Moxie was sleeping on the blanket thrown down for them in front of the fireplace, and I carefully picked her up and moved her into the bed. She only seemed bothered for a second, and then went back to sleep. She stayed in the bed quite a bit that day, then later both Simon and Tucker had to have a turn at it.
And I haven't seen a single cat in it since! What's up with that?
Well, from the looks of these pics annnnd seeing how they all took a turn at it, I figure it's probably at least safe to cut off the tags and not plan any returns to the store... How content does she look here!?
Wednesday, February 13, 2008
Their dad/step-dad (there's five kids) Craig is way cool!
Even Scruffy had to get in on the action!
I tell ya, I think the two girls screamed at the top of their lungs the entire time - and I don't blame 'em. That had to be looooads of fun! Oh, and you should see the size of the snow fort between our two houses!
...THIS landed on the bird feeders. There were a lot of times later in the day after this guy landed that none of the other birds came back. I think they're afraid for their lives (rightfully so!). If you know anything about birds, help me identify this - falcon or hawk or something else? I uploaded the super jumbo size pic (which you should hopefully see when clicking on this smaller one)
Tuesday, February 12, 2008
Multiple Kent State Campuses have issued advisories.
*Class cancellations begin effective at NOON for these campuses:
Stark (entire campus closes at 5 p.m.)
Class cancellations begin effective at 12:30 p.m. for:
Regular office hours remain in effect.
They SAY 5-8 inches, but you KNOW it's only gonna be 1-2.
Seriously though - there's all this talk about today's evil snow storm that's gonna hit...at one point the forecasts were suggesting 9 inches! Oh come on - those of us in this area know that these storms always slide right past, or actually split and skirt around us!!! TEASE TEASE TEASE!
C'mon Mother Nature - I challenge you! Bring it on! Hit us with your best shot! Sure, even if you do, it'll be too late in the day to have classes and work cancelled to really make a difference, but hey, to quote Little Orphan Annie, there's always tomorrow.
Here's what little bit we had to show after the last "big storm"...
Saturday, February 09, 2008
Sci Fi Channel on Friday announced that Battlestar Galatica will return for its fourth season on Friday, March 28 at 10 p.m. (ET/PT) with back-to-back half-hour specials. The first new episode will premiere the following week, Friday, April 4 at 10 p.m. (ET/PT).
The first special, Battlestar Galactica: Revisited, will serve up "essential" information on the series' past three seasons, providing the uninitiated with an introduction to the characters and relationships. Galactica's executive producers, Ronald D. Moore and David Eick serve as guides, providing insights and revelations about the series.
The second special, Battlestar Galactica: The Phenomenon, is a "celebrity-studded celebration" of the show's impact on pop culture. Interviewees include Seth Green, country music's Top Male Vocalist of 2007 Brad Paisley and Talk Soup's Joel McHale.
Here's how Sci Fi describes the new season:
"As Season 4 opens, the last remnants of humanity continue their search for a new home, the thin line that separates them from the rapidly evolving Cylons is being redrawn. Galactica's crew, rocked by Starbuck's sudden and mysterious return from the dead -- and her claims that she has been to Earth and can lead them there -- attempts to make sense of the inexplicable. Meanwhile, four members of the fleet are still reeling from the revelation that they are Cylons and have been all along."
Friday, February 08, 2008
Moxie loved the first cubes so much I had to buy more. We're up to four now - at only $3.88 at Wal-Mart, and considering how much entertainment they've provided, I think I can TOTALLY justify getting, oh, maybe another one or two? ;-) Here I've got them in a 2x2 configuration, but you can change the layout quite a bit. I just wish you could go UP with them - that they were strong enough to add levels of height.
Moxie loves to hide in side, play-attacking the other cats as they walk by. Or she'll be inside, reach out and snag a toy, and drag it back in with her. (She must think she's either a ground spider or hermit crab?!)
But her most favorite game? Sit inside and then I toss a toy on top. I've got some videos of this game, but haven't uploaded any to YouTube yet. Here's some stills...
The toy goes on top:
Within secs it rockets into the air as she smacks it from underneath, sometimes staying on the cube (which starts the smacking all over again), and sometimes flying off (which means she might reach out and snag it).
Rinse and repeat.
I guess she can just see it's shadow, or perhaps the indentation - whatever, it's a blast! If you've got cats, these toys are SO very worth it!
The hailstorm must have hit and finished very shortly before I got home from work - and I'm sure it freaked the cats out, considering the size of the hail.
This is after I'd been home a short bit and decided to get some pics - plus it had started raining, so there was some thawing by this point.
All in all it's just been a real dreary, murky, rainy week. Many of the streams, rivers, ponds and lakes are flooding around here - luckily we're no where near our backyard pond, which has a drainage system built in for overflow.