Thursday, August 13, 2015

Nailed it!

This morning, I plugged my iPod into my car and tapped "shuffle." Some days, this results in more "next track" requests than actual music, because, let's be honest, while I love the music I have chosen to have on my device, I'm not always in the mood to listen to (screech along to) all of them. Today, though, the iPod delivered with a feel-good morning commute soundtrack. My day started on exactly the right note.*

1. Home (Phillip Phillips) -
Settle down, it'll all be clear
Don't pay no mind to the demons
They fill you with fear
The trouble, it might drag you down
If you get lost, you can always be found
Just know you're not alone

I find something so reassuring about this part of the song. Also, it's right in the wheelhouse of my alto-ness, so I can almost feel like I'm sort of on key as I sing along. At least I'm not straining to (not at all) hit a high note I have no chance at ever hitting. I wasn't feeling particularly alone this morning, not lost, not wrestling with any confusion or chain of thoughts leading to irrational fear. That doesn't mean I don't welcome the reminders this song offers.

2. Letter to Me (Brad Paisley) -
And, oh, you got so much going for you, going right
But I know at seventeen, it's hard to see past Friday night
I wish you'd study Spanish
I wish you'd take a typing class
I wish you wouldn't worry, let it be
I'd say have a little faith and you'll see

This isn't actually my favorite part of the song ("And I'd end up saying have no fear, These are nowhere near the best years of your life'), but I love the sentiment behind this entire song. It makes me nostalgic. It makes me wonder what I'd say to myself at seventeen. This morning, I was also drawn to this part of the song, especially the last part. I can't count how many times I've worried needlessly. It makes me think of that adage, asking how many things you've worried about actually came to pass. Another great reminder to start the day.

3. Don't Blink (Kenny Chesney) -
I've been tryin' to slow it down
I've been tryin' to take it in
In this here today gone tomorrow world we're livin' in

The message of this entire song is one of my favorites. It's so true. It all goes so fast. It's easy to get caught up in it, life speeding past in a blur. Every word of this song resonates with me. This part is how I try to live my life. Slowly enough to be present, observe, remember, be grateful.

4. I Won't Give Up (Jason Mraz) -
We had to learn how to bend without the world caving in
I had to learn what I've got, and what I'm not, and who I am

I love every single part of this song. It's one I can (and have) listened to multiple times in a row. I love the hope, the commitment, the quiet determination. This part, hands down, is in my top five favorite song lyrics of all time. It's not a lesson with a definitive end and a final exam. I think it's what life *is*. This constant progression of life rolling forward, shaping who we are, and learning how that forms and reforms who we become.

5. The House That Built Me (Miranda Lambert) -
You leave home, you move on and you do the best you can.
I got lost in this whole world and forgot who I am.

This song transports me right back to my grandparents' house. It's a time machine. It also reminds me about where I've been since I left that place in my life, how lost I found myself, how far I've come since then. It comes across so melancholy, but really, it doesn't feel that way to me. I feel strong and at peace. Like in "Home," if you get lost, you can always be found. Like in "I Won't Give Up," I had to relearn who I was and who I had become.

6. Hey Pretty Girl (Kip Moore) -
Life's a long and winding ride
Better have the right one by your side
And happiness don't drag its feet
Time moves faster than you think

Oh, man. This song. This is what love and romance boils down to, for me. It makes me catch my breath. The first time I heard this song, all I could think is I hope that's how my husband has thought about me in those deep, quiet parts of his mind, because it's how he makes me feel. One thing I know for sure is that I have the right one by my side. I hear that and I smile, because I've never been more certain of anything.

*That pun was totally intended. I'd pretend to be sorry, but we all know I'm not.


Saturday, August 8, 2015

This Week on My TV: August 8, 2015

Disclaimer: Consider the fact that there could be spoilers ahead. You read at your own risk!

**(The Last Ship, S2E7 Alone and Unafraid) After getting a couple of episodes to see how they fit in, I fully endorse the addition of the two new crew members. -- The XO looks as if he's losing his mind, trying to handle the sub, and keep track of the three teams that has gone off to infiltrate the immunes. -- When they show shiny, relatively new vehicles, sometimes I get confused. I keep forgetting that this virus was recent and swift...and that, despite what Baltimore looked like, this isn't Revolution. -- I feel like Chandler and company are being way too conspicuous in their mission. -- Chandler [about the President]: If he's here on his own will, it means he has power. If he has power, he can be manipulated. -- And I just realized that the President is Duck, from Mad Men. I *knew* I recognized him! -- That whole kidnap/escort the President to the meet point, with Neils in tow, and the immunes hot on their heels, shooting...way intense.

**(The Astronaut Wives Club, S1E7 Rendezvous) I was cracking up over the instructions NASA had for the wives. I'm sure there are people who are outraged and offended just watching this, but hey, different times. The wives' reactions were what killed me. -- Marge Slayton: Damn, there's a lot of wives here. ... Something about the tone of her voice, which of course cannot be captured here. But the combination of annoyance and "get me outta here" was something I just identified with. -- I know there's a lot of story to cram into ten episodes, but the rapid fast forwards in time are somewhat disconcerting. -- I miss Max. -- Wow, NASA was a real administrative mess. The wives were onto something, demanding more efficiency, timeliness, and accountability to the wives and families of the astronauts. -- OMG, Gus. Poor Betty. I will admit that I had a bad feeling with the foreshadowing of this episode, so when the anniversary Paris trip got delayed, I Googled "Gus Grissom" and saw the year of his death. It was still a gut-punch when Betty got the news.


Saturday, August 1, 2015

This Week on My TV: August 1, 2015

Disclaimer: Consider the fact that there could be spoilers ahead. You read at your own risk!

**(The Last Ship, S2E6 Long Day's Journey) Chaplain [to Captain]: Don't let this sub become your white whale. -- I can't help but think this plan to infiltrate the immunes is not a smart one. At least Tex blends in, because Chandler sure doesn't. -- Rachel: At which point, exactly, did I lose you? Bacon: About two hours ago. -- I was disproportionately amused when the Nathan James took out that communication buoy (or whatever it was) that allowed the sub to talk to the immunes on land. Click!....dial tone. Everyone's reaction just struck me as so.flipping.funny. -- How long til Ned recognizes Chandler in the crowd of that rally? -- This episode ended so abruptly that was left staring at the DVR's "save? restart? delete?" screen, thinking that's it?!

**(The Astronaut Wives Club, S1E6 In the Blind) Wow, eight months since JFK died. Time flies on this show. -- So, it looks like the Shepherds worked things out? Ish? That relationship doesn't even look that great in public, much less behind closed doors.-- Pat: Oh, I don't drink during the day. Jo: But half your life is during the day! -- So, I'm confused. Did Gus really cheat on Betty with the obsessed fan or not? -- It's so funny, to me, watching the struggles of Shepherd and Glenn, talking about how they were never getting to launch into space again. -- I think, so far, this was least favorite episode. It just felt dark and uncomfortable the entire time.


Saturday, July 25, 2015

This Week on My TV: July 25, 2015

Disclaimer: Consider the fact that there could be spoilers ahead. You read at your own risk!

**(The Last Ship, S2E5 Achilles) Captain Chandler: Only one thing I hate more than seeing a sub on SONAR. XO Slattery: What's that? Captain Chandler: Not seeing one. -- Predictable enemy composition: One evil mastermind and one hothead. -- I knew that prisoner the Nathan James took from the hospital boat was going to turn out to be bad news. -- Going into silent mode on the Nathan James was crazy intense. Loved when the knife almost got knocked off the counter but was caught with catlike reflexes! -- When they still assumed what was inside the prisoner was a beacon for the guys on the sub, at one point, the XO suggested just tossing him overboard, when Rachel was insisting they bring him below deck to operate on him. Slattery was saying that would basically give away their exact location so it was on deck or nothing. I would think tossing him into the water would be no different that bringing him below deck, no? -- I cannot believe they just plugged that flash drive they cut out of the prisoner right into the computer without concern that it might be loaded with some kind of virus that could take down the entire operation of the Nathan James! -- Holy crap, the whackos just took out all the labs in the U.S. other than the two missiles the Nathan James was able to shoot down?? -- Bunch of crazies looking to take over the world on a nuclear submarine that will never run out of fuel. Methinks Captain Chandler has a huge headache right now.

**(Murder in the First, S2E7 State of the Union) Hildy's brother (what the heck is his name? Junior?) is into quite clearly something dirty but who is "the Union"?? -- Ummm...I though this kid was going with a guilty plea?? Wouldn't that preclude the need for a trial all together? Or is this trial-without-jury simply to determine the sentence? -- That kid's uncle is an interesting character. Whoa. -- I did not anticipate such a large passage of time between seasons one and two, but based on Hildy's daughter, a significant amount of time has gone by. Wasn't she like six years old in season one?


Saturday, July 18, 2015

This Week on My TV: July 18, 2015

Disclaimer: Consider the fact that there could be spoilers ahead. You read at your own risk!

**(Murder in the First, S2E6 Oh, Mexico) For the life of me, I cannot figure out how these cases are all connected yet. The gang activity. The bus shooting. The two dead cops. The missing undercover cop. Navarro and his brother. I see a few lines drawn between cases, but I'm convinced they all end up being related, because that's how season one was presented. Maybe I'm just assuming too much. -- I did not fully expect that box to contain Sugar's sister, what with Jalil Thompson's body went missing from the morgue.

**(The Astronaut Wives Club, S1E5 Flashpoint) Of course, Max notices Louise's new hair when Alan doesn't. -- I just want to hug Annie and be her friend every time someone shrinks back from her when she stutters. -- I so feel Betty's and Jo's agony over the Houston heat and humidity. I cannot even imagine the misery of enduring it without central air. -- Max [to Louise about his invitation for her to come to his hotel room]: I had to ask. No one gets what they want if they don't ever ask. -- Oh, Trudy, you know you want to take Gordo back already. -- Amazing how quickly, even now, the announcement of JFK's shooting can immediately have an effect. I was just thinking that I didn't expect Louise to spill her heart out to Alan about wanting him all to herself and being unable to be The Rock any longer, and that I was kind of impressed with how Rene handled that newspaper editor, and how I hope we haven't seen the last of Max yet, and then Kennedy is shot and the whole bunch of superficial nonsense screeches to a halt.

**(Madam Secretary, 2x04 Solace) The British ship in the opening scene and the hospital ship the Nathan James was seeking were apparently two different ships manned by two different groups of people. It took me an embarrassingly long time to figure this out. -- So...did they stock up on things like mini boxes of Frosted Flakes when they were in port or did the Nathan James have a ridiculous amount of provisions on board when they were first sent out on their secret mission to find the primordial strain of the virus? -- Hold up just one minute. The British guys trying to take over the hospital the ship are somehow connected to that crazy immune commune? -- Holy intensity on board that hospital ship. I nearly suffered multiple heart attacks. -- Thus far, I have decided that I like the two new soldiers who've joined Captain Chandler's crew. -- Captain Chandler: They don't ambush us. We ambush them. -- Bavis [spotting a bomb]: Uh oh. Tex: I hope that's Hebrew for a-ok. 


Friday, July 17, 2015

Oh Hey Friday!: July 17, 2015

It's Oh Hey Friday! time, hosted by September FARM. The idea is that you talk about five things -- any five things, themed or random -- and away we go!

The "Nope" Edition!

Earlier this week, I was washing my face before bed. Suffice to say, I cannot see clearly without my glasses and I thought I saw something on the wall behind me, reflected in the mirror. Tried to convince myself there was no way, because my glasses weren't on. Turns out, yes, I did see something. A nickel-sized, rust-colored spider. I wanted to ignore it, because I swear creep-crawlies only come out when T's not home or is asleep, and I didn't want to wake him. Then I thought of all the places that thing could crawl during the night. Like into the bedroom and perched between my eyes. I went to grab a shoe from the closet was gone. ACK. I looked all over the bathroom...nothing. I don't know what possessed me to look behind the towels -- we have a double towel bar on the back wall of the shower, with my towel hanging closest to the wall -- and yep, there he was. On. My. Towel. Clearly, waiting for me to dry off in the morning. GAH. End of story: spider's time expired and I have still checked and vigorously snapped my towel every single day since, before toweling off.

All you people who work out and claim you love the post-workout jelly legs? All this nonsense about how you know it was a good workout? Nuh-uh. Do not like. For the same reason that I don't like the feeling of being drunk. I feel like I'm out of control over my body and it unnerves me. My muscles can ache for days, fine, but I like to feel them when I move, even if that means they're screaming at me.

When people string hashtags together in one long run of lower case letters, I struggle to figure them out. This is why I capitalize the first letter of each word when I hashtag my tweets. I'm hashtag literacy challenged.

Fail: When my husband asks the color of my car's interior so he can replace my broken visor.

Turns interior is not grey.

And one great big YES: Our local NBC affiliate is doing this thing during the local morning news broadcast where they give a word during the 6am hour, Monday through Friday in the month of July. Then you have til noon to go to their Facebook page, enter the word, and get your name in the hat. On Monday, I will be driving over to Tampa to collect my hundred dollars. I still can't believe I won.


Saturday, July 11, 2015

This Week on My TV: July 11, 2015

Disclaimer: Consider the fact that there could be spoilers ahead. You read at your own risk!

**(Parenthood, S6E13 May God Bless and Keep You Always) Hank wants Zeek's blessing. And none of the other guys, not even Joel, ever asked Zeek for that before. -- Zeek calling Sarah "baby girl." Oh, this show. -- Well, I'm glad Haddie made it back for the wedding, at least. I wondered if she'd make a series finale appearance. -- Love love love that Max was made official wedding photographer. -- Joel and Julia kissing. And kissing. And being swoony. -- Weddings make cry. Real ones. Fictional ones. Doesn't matter. -- Zeek and Camille's third act, bringing Amber and baby Zeek to live in the big house with them. That was perfection. -- I loved all the conversations taking place on the dance floor. So intimate and so perfectly executed, like we got a few final private minutes with these characters. -- I thought I would escape Zeek's actual death, that maybe it would be referenced in past tense at the end, but no. And then I cried. Again. -- The "future" montage at the end was exactly the kind of closure I needed: Camille taking Zeek's trip to Paris. Crosby making The Luncheonette work without Adam and Jasmine there, round with another new Crosby babe. Amber's dinner table with her husband and daughter (!), and Ryan dropping of little Zeek. Max graduating from Chambers Academy, getting his diploma from Headmaster Adam Braverman.  And my favorite of all, Christmas morning with Joel and Julia, with a new puppy for Sydney and Victor and Victor's little sister...and a baby boy on Julia's lap!! Oh my gosh, I am tearing up just picturing that last one even now. What a great run for this show. I will miss those Bravermans.

**(The Astronaut Wives Club, S1E3 Retroattitude) If I only had a dollar for every time my dad or Gramp told me "it'll put hair on your chest" when I was a kid. I died laughing when they used this line! -- When are these guys going to learn about philandering when their wives keep showing up?! -- Drunk Trudy. LOL -- I love the wardrobe choices. I want them all. I must have been born in the wrong era. -- Rene's writing on the death of baby Timmy gave her character some much-needed depth. -- Scott Carpenter: If you want people to know the real you, you've gotta let 'em actually see it. -- I keep trying to pick a favorite wife. I can't.

**(The Astronaut Wives Club, S1E4 Liftoff) Wow, those are some spiffy new houses they were given in Houston. -- What's up with Louise and Max and that gigantic spark? -- The Gemini wives are adding an interesting twist. -- Love that they used real news coverage of Cuban missile crisis. I also love Evan Handler (he'll always be Charlotte's Harry to me though!) in this role as Duncan Porter. And all the 60s music they've chosen, which makes me want to head right over to iTunes. -- Gosh, what a tense time to live in with all the nuclear fear and worrying the world was about to end. -- Deke promoted to chief astronaut after his heart issue. Nice move. -- Poor Betty, being judged for being the most real, sweetest of the wives. Let her take the arrangement, because she's right: why should it go to waste? -- There is something very appealing about Max that I cannot place my finger on. -- I still haven't picked a favorite wife, but I'm relatively certain it's not Jo.



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