Wednesday, December 31, 2014

What I Learned in December: 2014

1. I've been using my beloved KitchenAid stand mixer all wrong. Apparently, I should *not* be using the whisk to make cookie dough, but the paddle. The whisk adds too much air to the dough, rather than simply mixing the ingredients. My mistake was born of the fact that I'd used a handheld mixer all my life, and the whisk looks the most like the beaters on a hand mixer! Lesson learned.

2. Yukon Cornelius, on the classic Christmas special, "Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer," was not looking for silver or gold. He was prospecting for peppermint! Unfortunately, a scene at the end of the original broadcast was deleted in every subsequent showing, to make room for Santa visiting the Island of Misfit Toys, so the audience never gets the resolution of his search: the peppermint mine he finds near Santa's Workshop! As I read through the Wikipedia page on the special, I learned all sorts of trivia, but that one surprised me the most.

Every month, Chatting at the Sky shares what she learned. Big things and little things. Life lessons from the serious to the silly. I've decided I want to participate. Just another means of capturing who am I along this broken little road called life.


Saturday, December 27, 2014

This Week on My TV: December 27, 2014

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

**(Once Upon a Time, S4E8 Smash the Mirror (1)I have to admit that, while I don't have anything against the Frozen story line, I'm far more intrigued by the parts with the Sorcerer's Hat and Apprentice, and with Regina's search for the author of the book. -- Henry [to Emma]: You always think that pulling away from people will fix your problems, but it never does. -- How does the Dairy Queen (I can't seem to stop thinking of her by that name LOL) not get filthy, traipsing around the forest in those long, sparkly, white gowns? -- Whoa, whoa, whoa. Robin "just had the best...sleep" ever and invited Regina back to his place for some breakfast?! That whole scene was so steamy, it nearly made me blush! -- You would think the residents of Storybrooke would immediately be suspicious of Mr Gold when he offers to help them so willingly, even when they specifically seek him out for it. C'mon, Emma, are you really so desperate to get rid of your magic that you aren't wondering what Gold's plan is and what's ultimately in it for him to help you? -- Regina [who just rushed into the Charmings' home after Emma's magic injured Henry, and Snow says Regina might want to finish buttoning her blouse before going up to see him]: Oh, I a rush to get here. ... Yeah, that's it, Regina. LOL! Truth be told, she *is* a good mom to Henry, though. -- Kristoff: You royals sure go to exhaustive lengths to ignore your issues. -- LOL: Will Scarlet emptying most of a flask into his coffee cup at Granny's Doner. -- When Hook left that voice mail for Emma, telling her that he'd lied to her, because he so desperately wanted to be a better man for her and had made a deal with Gold, and that even if she never wanted to speak to him again that would be ok, because it would mean she was safe, I kinda wanted to hug him. And not (just) because he's...ahem...Hook.

**(Once Upon a Time, S4E9 Smash the Mirror (2)Famous last words on Once Upon a Time: don't worry, everything will be fine. -- Girl talk between Snow and Regina = weird. -- Regina [to Snow and Charming]: This may be the worst idea you've ever had, and you hired the Wicked Witch as your nanny. -- Regina [to Snow]: Do you get a quarter from the Hope Commission every time you say that word? -- That was actually a really good conversation between Snow and Regina about hope, redemption, making better choices, heroes vs villains, good vs evil. -- LOL at this conversation in the library. ... Robin: Why would a cat want a hat? Will Scarlet: I've seen stranger. -- I keep getting confused by who is currently in possession of the Sorcerer's Hat. Stupid flashbacks. -- I wonder if we're ever going to meet or see Yensid? -- The Dairy Queen sports some serious bewbs. -- NOOOOOOO!! Give Hook back his heart, Crocodile!! -- I continue to find The Book one of the most fascinating storylines of this show, possibly of all four seasons. I'm more invested in seeing how this plays out than whether or not Elsa finds Anna. -- Well, poo. Dairy Queen has gotten her way, gained her new "magic sisters," and harnessed their magic to launch the Shattered Sight curse.

**(The Mentalist, S7E4 Black MarketI like the tensions between Cho and Vega, after he learned she lied to him. It's true to Cho's character, for one, and for another, he's absolutely right: He has to be able to trust her with his life, and how is he supposed to do that, when he knows she lies? -- Kirk Upton: You think I'm stupid? Cho: Maybe. I don't know you yet. ... Have I mentioned I love Cho? -- I like that we're finally getting a glimpse into Abbott's personal life. It stinks that he and his wife are clearly crazy about one another, and now some secret from a case in his past has to threaten either her career or their marriage. -- I've never seen a corpse cry before (on tv, I mean; I have no experience with actual corpses), but they focused in on the body of Kirk Upton as a tear ran out of his eye. I wonder if that's possible? -- What kind of name is Bibby?? -- Jane is a considerate sick person. After Abbott reaches for a phone the ill Jane had just used, Patrick wipes it off with his sleeve before handing it over. -- Cho [to Vega]: Apology is easy. Trust is earned.

**(Mike and Molly, S5E3 'Tis the Season to Be MollyI like that they took the humor of Molly wanting everything about Christmas to be her way, and then gave it the sentimentality of her feeling like every Christmas has to be exactly like the last one she had with her dad. That's the element I felt they were lacking last season, when everything was obnoxiously slapstick. -- Vince: I am never running an errand on Christmas Eve again. It's like a holly jolly end of days out there. -- The Christmas carol "Hark, the Herald Angels Sing" sure seems to get a lot of use in Christmas shows, movies, and television episodes. I wonder why that one?

**(Reign, S2E9 Acts of WarGood grief, Mary, I though you *liked* Conde. Why would you even suggest marrying him to Claude?? -- Mary's dresses this season have been so hit or miss, disappointing, after how much I loved almost all of the first season's choice in wardrobe. Not a fan of that winter white dress they chose for her, at the beginning of this episode. -- Conde: I feel a creeping sense of unease. Mary: Because you've come to know me. I ask for things. -- Mary's "oh sweet Lord" slayed me, when she was in Claude's room, trying to convince her to marry Conde, and Catherine walked in. -- Ouch. How many times are people going to remind Mary of her infertility when it suits their own purposes? -- It sure doesn't look like wintry enough weather for it to be the Feast of St Nicholas. -- I'm not sure telling Conde what it feels like to be married to the right person, right after she set him up to be engaged to Claude, was a wise move, Mary. -- I wept for Mary as she sat in Catherine's chambers, terrified, broken, crying, after her attack and rape. And I sincerely liked Catherine for the way she handled Mary, cared for her, promised to help her be strong. That was some standing-ovation level acting. -- So heartbreaking to watch Mary tell Francis that she was assaulted. I can't even imagine how it must feel to have to pretend otherwise, publicly, while knowing the truth.

**(Reign, S2E10 MercyEven as he tries to be a fearsome king, I find it difficult to take Francis seriously. -- I feel terrible for Mary that she must endure being raped and now hiding it from all but those in her closest circle. -- Poor Greer. Finally realizing she does love Castleroy, only to have him dragged away because he's a Protestant. And then to see him disappear into exile. -- Catherine's guilt over the death of the twins is reaching Henry levels of insanity. I wonder how this will resolve. -- Claude: She hates me, and you're enjoying that, aren't you. Kenna: I'm trying not to, but you're being such a spiteful little shrew. -- This conversation between Conde and  Mary cracked me up. ... Conde: Mary, you're not even armed... [she whips out a dagger] Good Lord! -- Wow. Leith cashed in his I.O.U. with Francis to free Castleroy. That was quite a...declaration of love for Greer? -- O.M.G. Did Catherine just poison Claude to appease the ghosts of her dead twins?! -- That look on Conde's face, when he realized what had happened to Mary made me suspect he was in love with her long before the final scene where Mary read his letter of confession. -- Wait a second. Did Conde break off the engagement to Claude? When the heck did that happen? -- I want to get sucked in and believe that Mary will actually leave Francis, but I'm just not buying it. -- I don't much care for Narcisse being powerless as Francis's puppet. He was far more entertaining (and, um, appealing) with power. -- What. the. Heck. Is up. With Catherine. The illusions, or whatever they are, are a combination of unnerving and ridiculous.


Saturday, December 20, 2014

This Week on My TV: December 20, 2014

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

**(Blue BloodsS5E9 "Under the Gun") Go, Linda, screaming at her mugger to scare him off when he wanted her wedding ring. Her cash and other jewelry, fine, you let that go without a fight, but your wedding ring? I'd have had a difficult time with that as well. -- Wow, you don't see Reagans cash in on "do you know who I am?" very often (hardly ever!), but Linda sure did when it came to getting issued a carry permit for a gun. -- Frank [to Jamie and Erin about the news that Linda was buying a gun and whether he was going to tell Danny]: She wasn't kissing another man in the gun store. She wasn't shop lifting a weapon in the gun store. She was buying a weapon legally in the gun store. It's no body's business but her own and whomever she chooses to share it with. -- I did suspect that the mole was the young assistant at the DA's office that was the mole. Otherwise, why spotlight her in that conversation with Erin about taking the bar?

**(2 Broke GirlsS4E7 "And a Loan for Christmas"I can't believe I was fairly amused by the personalize Christmas cards Han made his employees. Max's with the chainsaw (complete with sound effects from Han!) was the best one. -- Sophie's messed up nativity. I don't even know what to do with that mental image. -- I did like that Max and Caroline got the loan to make their cupcake t-shirts. That was a surprisingly sentimental ending for a show that I can't recall ever having a "soft" moment.

**(CSIS15E5 "Girls Gone Wilder"I don't think I want to hang out with Sarah, Morgan, and Finn. Every time they do anything as a group, a murder takes place. -- OMG. That "goopy one" the guys got while the girls were at that forensics conference. ::gag:: -- How did Sarah know the shooter was a guy? When I saw the silhouette with the longish hair, first thing I thought was "could that be a woman?" -- Ugh. That Dr Jane expert witness woman was awful. -- I did not expect there to be two shooters, unrelated, but I did think the second shooter was suspicious when we met him. Interesting how their reasons were polar opposites: The first guy was shooting people because he was mad that Dr Jane prevented the imprisonment of the criminal who killed his family was behind bars, claiming there wasn't enough evidence to convict (it was two transposed numbers), and the second guy was a CSI that went to prison because he was a former CSI that "embellished" evidence so that convictions could be made. -- When Morgan was trying to scrub the blood off her hands, all I could think of was every Lady Macbeth reference ever. -- I wonder if Finn and her fling will really try to make some kind of relationship work? And does that mean he would move or would she?

**(The MentalistS7E3 "Orange Blossom Ice Cream") What I've learned from watching tv: Businessman is code for "you don't really want to know." -- Hmmm. Beirut isn't a city you see used much in television shows. Nice job by the writers to pick somewhere less used. -- Post head dunking made Patrick very cranky. I don't recall many instances in which he's shown that sort of emotion. --  Such a classic catty dusplay by Erica Flynn, telling Lisbon that she was once romantic with Patrick and then following that with "I shouldnt have said anything, please forgive me." If there's ever anything insincere, it's this sort of statement. She knew *exactly* what she was doing. -- If some irate "businessman" were going to be hunting me down. I would be on a plane tonight, never mind tomorrow. It isn't like the FBI couldn't get Lisbon and Jane out of there state, if they needed to. -- Lisbon is being so childish about Patrick's romantic past! She needs to... OMG, their argument was a setup meant for Erica, and I totally fell for it. -- Wow, Cho is mad at Vega, and worse, disappointed in her for lying to him when she told him Abbott said she could go on their mission.

**(Mike and MollyS5E2 "To Have and Withhold") It appears that Carl and Victoria are still a (somewhat disturbing) item. -- Molly [to Peggy, about her shelves of "bodice rippers"]: I just assumed these were all westerns.-- The way Molly pounded out pages in her book while at Peggy's, I started to wonder if she had plagiarized from Peggy's collection. -- LOL: Mike and Molly's "handshake and I love you" because Molly can only write when she is...pent up.

**(ReignS2E8 "Terror of the Faithful"I thought Francis told Mary to leave, so I was a little confused while they were still stalking around the castle, bickering. -- LOL: Catherine pouring the pitcher of water iver the hungover Claude. -- Lola looked like she was on the verge of laughing out loud while in her scene with Narcisse. -- I'm pretty sure that Claude's virtue hasn't been worthy of defending since she was pre-adolscent. -- Francis has a serious set of  Crazy Eyes. -- Francis seems to think that lamenting he "never meant fir any of this to happen" can excuse from all his terrible decision making, both on the throne and in his relationship with Mary. -- Naricsse: You could've used the extra safety my friendship would have offered. Lola: You are no friend. Or patriot. You're just a dangerous man. Narcisse: Well, perhaps it's escaped your notice, but the world is a dangerous place, and one day you will wish you had someone like me to protect you from it. -- Every time someone requires medical attention, I wonder again if we've seen the last of Nostradamus. -- Holy crap! Little Claude was as much a handful as young woman Claude. Did she honestly murder her twin baby sisters?? No wonder Catherine had her removed from the castle for so long. -- Is Catherine truly being haunted by the ghosts of her murdered babies or is she, like Henry, suffering from hallucinations? -- I very nearly had a heart attack when Bash was injured in that ambush on the party moving the Protestant minister. -- Narcisse and Claude make a disturbing and dangerous couple. I wonder if Narcisse has truly moved on from Lola.

**(Person of InterestS4E10 "The Cold War") Root needs to stop forcing herself on Shaw. If I'm getting annoyed, surely short-tempered Shaw is. -- Based on the flashbacks to Greer in 1974, he did not age well. -- The look of total amusement on Fusco's face during this phone conversation ... Mr Reese: What do you want, Lionel. Fusco: Just the sound of your voice. Hows' your day going, honey? -- Mr Finch: Imagine what it will look like when two gods go to war. -- LOL: The church standoff between Root and Mr Reese, and the gang from Samaritan.-- I can't figure out what it was that happened to Greer in the 1974 flashbacks that turned him into the man, with his mission, that we see in 2014. -- That kid who spoke for Samaritan, in that conversation with Root/The Machine, was absolutely flawless in his delivery, especially this line ... "I wanted to see inside the mind of a fallen god." -- I have a really bad feeling that not everyone in our little group will be getting out of this war alive. I just don't know who we're going to lose, though I suspect it will be either Root or Shaw.

**(MomS2E8 "Free Therapy and a Dead Lady's Yard Sale"This show deals with some difficult topics, for a sitcom. Addiction. Teen pregnancy and adoption. Cancer. Now domestic abuse. -- I do feel bad for Violet. I don't think she means to be awful. She is very broken. -- I can see this new therapy arc being very similar to how it was used on Two and a Half Men. -- Since we've learned that Violet's dad is not really dead, I can't help wondering if that lie will come back to bite Christy like the others seem to.

**(Once Upon a TimeS1E8 "Red Sox Swap") Arthur: Katrina, this is a Red Sox house. We do not use the Y word here. -- Lily!! (Ok, fine, Allison Hannigan, but she'll always be Lilypad.) I hope Pam's a recurring character! -- OMG, Katrina has Baby Jesus earrings?! -- I like Ronny better when he's "more Will, less Jack" (as in Will and Grace). -- They are knocking it out of the park with the interactions between Marjorie and Katrina. The constant barely-veiled insults and the snark are hilariously spot on, both in writing and delivery. -- Pam: You poke a squirrel, get ready to dodge some nuts. -- They have to be showing these slightly out of order, because now Jackie looks less pregnant than she did in the previous episode. -- Sean [handing Jackie the bobblehead from the Red Sox Swap]: Here, you can teach your baby how to nod. -- Awww! Arthur has had a backup owl for years, just in case Marjorie didn't get it in the family Red Sox Swap.

**(Sleepy HollowS2E10 "Magnum Opus"I feel like I missed something. Since when was Irving in a truck with Jenny, being driven to Canada? -- I had a feeling Katrina being able to use Henry's "magic mirror" to communicate with Ichabod was too good to be true. It was a total trap. I just wonder why she wasn't suspicious? -- Hmmm. Methuselah's sword is the key to Moloch's demise? Well this is going to be an interesting treasure hunt. -- Ichabod: Leftenant, this quest will be fraught with peril. Abbie: Crane, you and I can't have *lunch* without peril! -- Now that Henry is informing Abraham that Katrina is communicating with Ichabod, I wonder how that is going to affect the way Abraham treats her? It kind of blows her cover with him. -- Abraham [to Katrina]: You were once my greatest treasure. ... Ouch. Even coming from him. -- Things by which I will continue to be baffled every single time they happen: Why Headless looks around. How he navigates steps without tripping. Why he acts like he can hear sounds. HE HAS NO HEAD. -- Once again, Abbie walks around with her regular old real-world firearm drawn. Like that has ever had any effect whatsoever on the supernatural threats they encounter. -- Ichabod [as morning breaks on Headless]: Good morning, sunshine. -- LOL: Ichabod flashing his weather app at Abbie when she asks how he knew when the sun would rise, providing them with a measure of safety, after he uses himself as a decoy to distract Headless from pursuing Abbie. -- I greatly appreciated the flashbacks showing some friendship history between Abraham and Ichabod. -- That creature guarding Methuselah's sword (and all those statue-fied people who've attempted to find it in the past) was terrifying. -- Back to my musings on Headless: so he *can't* see. Because otherwise Ichabod and Abbie's plan to use Headless to distract that Gorgon while they slipped past into the room with the swords wouldn't have worked. If he could see, he likely would have been turned to stone like the others. -- That was quite a bitter, emotionally charged conversation between Henry and Katrina about good and evil and love. -- That was a pretty awesome sword fight between Ichabod and Headless, while Abbie was busy trying to figure out which sword was the right one.


Saturday, December 13, 2014

This Week on My TV: December 13, 2014

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

**(The MentalistS7E1 "Nothing But Blue Skies") I wasn't initially impressed with the new detective, Vega. Maybe she'll grow on me. -- After all this time, it's...weird seeing Jane and Lisbon in a romantic relationship. But even though (unlike Pike) Jane doesn't have some Grand Life Plan to offer Lisbon, he seems to "get" her and that's a pretty important factor in a relationship. For all the plans Pike had, they didn't succeed in a lasting relationship. -- Oh, Cho, don't you and your sarcastic sense of humor ever change. -- I didn't get into the case of the week very much. Maybe because it, once again, involved some random law enforcement person who is unfamiliar with Jane's methods and gets all aggravated, only to have Jane solve the case. Spackman did have some great facial expressions along the way, though. -- I would never have recognized Pike when he stopped by to say hello to Lisbon. I actually had to look it up in order to believe it was the same actor, with that new beard he's sporting.

**(2 Broke GirlsS4E6 "And the Model Apartment"I'm pretty sure *I* could deliver Max's and Han's lines more smoothly than they do. Max is just abrupt and shrill, and Han says his lines like he's reading them off a card for the first time. The lingerie models without personalities had more acting talent...and they had very little. -- Sophie's "hey, everybody!" is still the best part of this show. -- I have to admit, I was shocked Oleg actually made an effort to stay faithful to Sophie. -- Max is far more funny when she doesn't speak. Like when she came out of the diner kitchen wearing one of her new bras *over* her clothes.

**(Mike and MollyS5E1"The Book of Molly"Mike was really cute, waiting for Molly at the window. -- LOL: That scene in the diner when Mike was telling Carl how relieved he was Molly was back and Carl made a remark that left the two of them staring at each other, clearly trying not to laugh. -- It felt like they might be toning down last season's somewhat obnoxious, over-the-top-ness a bit. I'll be glad if they can meet in the middle between this show's two personalities. -- As well as Mike knows and understands Molly, it would have shown she knows him just as well if she'd taken part of the check to pay down a good chunk of her/their debt, and used some on a more modest, more reliable pre-owned car rather than a pricy sports car.

**(The MentalistS7E2 "The Greybar Hotel"What is it with angry women in the FBI interrogation room this season? -- It seemed just a little too easy that Marie suggested the prison break like Lisbon and Jane planned, and a lot too easy for them to actually walk out of prison. -- I do think it was sweet that Jane told Lisbon to wear flipflops in the shower because they will make her less attractive and that he was ready to take a bullet for her when she was being held at gunpoint by Marie's crazy boyfriend. -- About that final scene with the file on the smuggler's girlfriend. I wonder how it's going to play out with that former sort-of-flame of Jane's turning up in the next episode?

**(Marry MeS1E8 "Stand By Me"I could have lived without ever seeing Gil in his tighty whities. -- How did they get Jake into those crazy yoga poses? -- Gil: Much like this Eric Stonestreet limited edition buttondown. ... It took me a second, and then I realized "plaid with a paisley accent inside the collar and rolled cuffs" Cam from Modern Family! LOL -- Gil was a mess. I kind of hope this episode evolves him a little, so his character can be slightly less annoying.

**(ReignS2E7 "The Prince of Blood"The imagery of Mary and Francis sitting at opposite ends of a very long breakfast table spoke volumes of the distance between them as a result of the secrets he's keeping from Mary to protect her from the knowledge that he killed Henry. -- Mary: If you treat people as your enemy, that is what they become. -- Oh sweet irony ... Mary: Unfortunately my husband isn't giving me what I want so I've come to ask you instead. ... She says to Conde, who just got finished bedding another man's wife. -- Poor Kenna. She seems to want to find a friend and keeps finding girls who are insincere. -- I waver on whether or not I kinda like Narcisse. Part of me thinks he's being sincere in what he wants from Lola...and the rest of me doesn't trust him any further than I could throw him. -- Princess Claude is a handful and a half. Catherine has issues with her daughters, between this one and Clarissa. And what about those two little ghost girls Catherine keeps seeing? Are they really daughters that died in infancy? -- I was rather impressed with Lola's reaction to Narcisse kissing her, slapping him and telling him not to take before she gives. -- Once again, Francis forgets that he is a better ruler when he and Mary work as a team and that he is weakest when they are apart, literally or figuratively, even when he's trying to protect her.

**(About a BoyS2E8 "About a Christmas Carol"This was actually a really great Christmas episode. For once Fiona didn't drive me crazy. I appreciated her Christmas spirit and determination to keep it magical for Marcus. -- LOL: Marcus and Will howling to get out their sadness about their fathers. -- I cannot believe this show made me *cry*. But when Will's dad showed up with his string quartet, playing Will's one hit, Runaway Sleigh, I was wiping tears off my face. I am such a sap.

**(The MiddleS6E9 "The Christmas Wall") Frankie: Where are you going and what's with the hat? Axl: If you must know, it's for our new business venture: Tree Wise Men, a subsidiary of Boss Co. Enterprises. -- Darrin: Rudolph made me sad, you know? They wouldn't ever let him play any reindeer games. That's B.S., man. -- LOL: Brick and the Christmas newsletter. -- Frankie [about Christmas]: I don't know if I can do it, Mike. I think I'm done. Mike: Did you get into the eggnog already? There better be some left! -- That $3 that Tree Wise Men earned after damages should have gone entirely to Darrin. It was Axl and Sean who fought over King Moonracer and destroyed stuff. -- LOL: The Heck's artificial Christmas tree with the green bottom and the pink top. -- I loved Boss Co laying in the Heck's front yard making snow angels. -- Awwww. The look on Mike's face when they all woke up Christmas morning to see that Frankie had put up Christmas after all, after Mike confessed he never celebrated Christmas before her. (Yes, I cried. Good grief.) -- By the way, I'm Team Axl on this one. King Moonracer was NOT a toy.

**(Modern FamilyS6E10 "Haley's 21st Birthday"LOL: Lily asking Alex, Luke, and Manny if they know how babies are made. Luke telling her to get him a bagel and a pen...because she's going to need to take notes and he's hungry. And the expression on Lily's face when Luke and Manny are explaining about babies. -- ::snort:: Alex called Luke and Manny "Fuzzstaches." -- Haley: You're like my Grandma. Gloria [holding a dart]: Grandma. Easy...I have stabbed closer relatives than you. -- Lily's explanation of where babies come from: When I grow up, I wanna have kids. Well, first I want a perfect husband. Someone who takes care of me. And then we're gonna make a baby. Which is easy: you  just put eggs and tadpoles in a glass and the woman has to drink it. Then the woman and man kiss and jump on their bed. After a year, she pees and a baby comes out. -- LOL: Phil wanting to get a tattoo on his lower back that says GO DEEP BAM! Oh, Phil.

**(The Big Bang TheoryS8E11 "The Clean Room Infiltration"Amy: Wait, She Hulk's a lawyer? Howard: Yeah, she works at a lawfirm in New York. Sheldon: Yes, but she's the only monster at the form. Between you. me, and the wall, I think she's an affirmative action hire. -- Sheldon: Ugh. English pudding. You get yourself all excited for pudding and here comes a cake with raisins in it. -- Raj's father sure spent a lot of time bashing marriage to the newly engaged Penny. Now I'll be waiting for that to resurface. -- LOL: Bernadette singing "Santa Claus Comes Tonight" in the car next to a sullen Sheldon. -- Bernadette: Why'd you turn it off? Sheldon: Because in the last ten minutes, Santa Claus came to town, kissed Mommy, and ran Grandma over with a reindeer. I had a drunk uncle who did all those things. Nobody sings songs about him. -- Awww. At the mall, when Sheldon was talking about all the things Amy loves. Who knew he paid that much attention to anyone but himself? He really *does* love her! -- Where was Emily for Christmas? I know she's a doctor...but isn't she a dermatologist? That's not exactly an "on call for Christmas Eve" sort of medical specialty, is it? -- So Howard, Raj, and Leonard erased their names from the sign-in sheet at the lab, for the clean room, and left, pretending they were never there. First, every time I'm ever erased something there is always some sort of lingering evidence. The "ghost" of the pencil marks, smudges, imprint from the point of the pencil. Second, did they close the loading dock door? Or just leave it wide open for anyone to walk through and steal expensive lab equipment or who knows what? And finally, doesn't the University have security cameras that would show who was there and when, especially for cases when a bird gets into the clean room, causing it to be shut down for weeks and require extensive cleaning? -- Amy's face when she opened the framed photo of Sheldon on Santa's lap and then listening to its recorded message. -- Totally teared up at this scene. ... Sheldon [opening his gift from Amy]: Cookies? Amy: They're your Mema's Christmas cookies. I called and got the recipe. Sheldon [looks at one, then takes a bite, and looks at Amy]: They're perfect. It tastes like her hugs.

**(MomS2E7 "Soapy Eyes and a Clean Slate"Having Baxter suddenly become a more responsible adult, while unbelievable, creates some interesting dynamics between him and Christy. I like that. But not if he tries to take Roscoe away from Christy. -- I finally feel badly for Violet. She's miserable, but she had a terrible childhood and clearly hasn't recovered from giving up her baby. -- Christy's old landlord, Mr. Perugian, has a thing for Marjorie?? That's...weird. -- Nathan Cordrry is back! And not being a scum! I like it better when he isn't being a scum. I don't like disliking him.

**(Last Man StandingS4E11 "Wedding Planning"You know, it's all fine and dandy to have your own beliefs, but if Ryan showed up at my house and started mocking my beliefs, I would quite firmly show him the door. -- Holy crap. Ryan and Kristin said they want to take a little of the $20,000 Mike and Vanessa gave them for the wedding, have a small wedding, and use the rest to pay off *some* of their debt? SOME of their debt? How much debt have they managed to rack up?! -- Mike [to Vanessa]: Need some help out here? Throw some plates against the wall? Maybe punch that pork roast a couple of times? -- Mike [about Vanessa]: I know. My wife has gone rogue. ... When he said that line, he looked exactly like Buzz Lightyear. -- Kyle learning poker looked exactly like I would trying to play poker. -- Ed's reaction when he learned Kyle only wanted to play poker so he could use the winnings to buy some Christmas gifts for needy kids was priceless. When he started finding ways for Kyle to "win," though, all I could think of was when Chandler "taught" Joey to "play Cups" so Joey could "win" the money he was refusing to take from Chandler.

**(A to Z, S1E9 "I is for Ill Communications")  Andrew and Zelda are the cutest couple on all of tv. -- I wonder if they would have explored a romantic relationship between  Big Bird and Howard, if this show had been allowed to progress past one season. (Even though haven't officially canceled it yet, I'm too afraid to hope it will get a miracle renewal.) -- Loved the dress Zelda wore to decorate Andrew's tree! -- I totally called that Andrew and Zelda were going to turn around and say 'I love you' for the first time after they made up for their fight and went their separate ways at the airport for Christmas with their families. Happy dance! -- Did we ever learn what "awesome amazing gift" Andrew got Zelda?

**(The McCarthysS1E7 "Arthur and Marjorie's Night Apart"When did Jackie get so pregnant??  -- OMG, did she seriously say Jeter was cute? ::gasp:: -- Marjorie [to Arthur, as she prepares him for her to be away overnight]: Some of the light switches are tricky. When it gets dark, go to bed. ... Three years living at this house and I still don't get the light switches right half the time, so I get what she's saying!-- LOL: Arthur ended up in the hospital because he fell down, trying to make grilled cheese.

**(Sleepy HollowS2E9 "Mama"I hate hooded characters. You never know what's lurking under there. -- Poor Ichabod has a terrible cold. I don't know if Tom Mison was actually sick or what, but he sold me on it. -- That was a really good and enlightening conversation between Jenny and Abbie about their mother and what their childhood was like leading up to their mother being sent to Tarrytown Psychiatric. It made me very sympathetic toward Lori Mills. What a terrible position to be in, plagued by Moloch and demons, and wanting to protect your daughters, with everyone thinking you're crazy. -- Ichabod [about the matzoh ball soup Hawley brought him]: Ohhhh, that is... [glares at Hawley] somewhat comforting. -- Henry is so evil, the way he torments Katrina with that (demon) baby, playing on her unfulfilled maternal instincts and the guilt she clearly feels over abandoning him as a child. -- Katrina's special pendant seems to make all manner of evil of look normal. Not only does it give Abraham a head back, but makes a demon look like a newborn baby. -- I knew I didn't trust that "nurse" at Tarrytown! -- Whoa! Demon baby is growing at a rather rapid pace!

**(Law and Order: SVUS16E9 "Pattern Seventeen"There sure seems to be a lot cases that somehow track back to Rollins and Atlanta. -- Do any other police agencies ever test rape kits in a timely fashion? -- I actually do hope that Olivia gets to keep Noah. She does clearly love him. -- I keep waiting for them to make Deputy Chief Dodds even a tiny bit likable or sympathetic or something. -- Something is clearly going to happen between Rollins and her old boss from Atlanta. That guy is a slime.


Thursday, December 11, 2014

Broken Road Confessionals: December 11, 2014

**I made an observation right around election time: The American public claims it wants the elected officials they put into office to be able to cross party lines and make bipartisan effort. Yet it seems many of those same citizens are as polarized as the leaders they are criticizing. Which begs the question: Is this straight up hypocrisy or do the people simply not want to accept that this is, sadly, an accurate representation of our country?

**One more thing, election-related, and then I'm all done being publicly political in any way. It bothers me when people claim that anyone who doesn't share the same views they do are "stupid." Just because we may not agree, doesn't mean I'm stupid. In fact, I do my best to educate myself on the people running, and I make the decision that best reflect my personal values. That is the beauty of our system. I get to vote for the person who I feel represents my views and values. You get the same opportunity. So does every other citizen. The majority rules. Yes, even if that majority is only 50.2%. Yes, even if it isn't what I want or you want. Calling someone stupid for disagreeing with you makes you as ignorant as you claim the other person to be. That's playground behavior that isn't even tolerated among the preschool set. We each get our vote, they all count the same, and hurling insults certainly does nothing to mend the polarization we're experiencing in this country. In fact, all it accomplishes is driving the wedge in further. You may, very well, be disappointed with an outcome, but keep in mind that we all want the same thing--a well run country--and while we may not agree on how to make that happen, we all vote as best we can. If you have nothing nice or helpful to say, perhaps its best you just continue using your voice on your ballot and stop being part of the disparity problem the U.S. is having. We don't always get our way, but acting like a spoiled child about it changes nothing, other than alienating everyone who isn't your exact philosophical or political clone. And pointing your finger, accusingly, that "the other party won't get along with mine," while calling them stupid, certainly doesn't facilitate a more civil discussion.

**That new(ish) Chanel No. 5 commercial's of ad music was such a surprising way to interpret that old song used in the movie "Grease" that it actually stopped me in my tracks. I'm always amazed when an artist can take a song and change its whole personality, just by the way they sing it. I actually had to Google that and discovered this version was done by someone named "Lo-Fang" and now I have to add it to my list of songs I want to purchase on The iTunes.

**Clearly, this "Confessions" post has been loitering in my Draft folder for quite a while. I got busy leading up to Thanksgiving, what with travel and decorating and what have you, and I started to feel scattered, which led to piles of drafts, none of which were ready for publishing. Some I've rolled forward for current posts, and others I've backdated for when they were intended to be shared. And, well, it's my blog, right? Hoping to get back to the actual posting and not just piles of drafts.


Saturday, December 6, 2014

This Week on My TV: December 6, 2014

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

**(About a BoyS2E6 "About a Balcony"Because of course Fiona and Marcus have been reciting the balcony scene from "Romeo and Juliet" to each other since Marcus was about four. -- When Fiona said Mr Chris smells like "Eau de Pompous Moron," all I could think was that I know some people who "use that scent." -- I'm pretty sure Will and Andy didn't need to wear those stupid jumpsuits for the viewer to know they were doing some carpentry work. Give the audience a little more credit. -- Progress: Marcus was able to figure out that doing a Romeo and Juliet scene with his mother in front of the whole school was social suicide. -- I wasn't sure what to expect from an episode that was based on Shakespeare and The Three Stooges, but it was actually pretty funny, and I liked that Fiona at least got a kiss. Between Mr Chris and the Sherlock Holmes from Will's Halloween party, she's already seen more action in two episodes than all of last season.

**(The McCarthysS1E4 "Supporting Jackie"Predictable but no less amusing that immediately after promising Jackie to support her in all the things she can't do while pregnant, her family went out and did all the things Jackie can't do. -- The father of Jackie's baby is seriously dead?? Well, that's a twist from "product of a one night stand" or "they were together but he freaked out and left when she got pregnant" I guess. -- Why is Jackie doing birthing classes before she even starts showing?

**(Marry MeS1E3 "Scary Me"The "baby" in Julie's sling was not even convincing (well, except when they swapped the prop for an actual appearance of the baby), and OMG her baby's name is Atticus? That's...definitely not my taste. -- LOL: All the "Julie's a B" jokes when Julie showed up at Annie and Jake's haunted house dressed like a bee. -- Loved Annie and Jake's zombie Lucy and Ricky costumes.

**(Marry MeS1E4 "Annicurser-Me"Well done on the flashbacks. It was like Friends-meets-How-I-Met-Your-Mother, seeing all Annie and Jake's previous "date-aversary" disasters and then seeing them again as they really happened.

**(CSIS15E3 "Bad Blood" - Yikes. Quarantine?) Not a fan of Sarah's new haircut. It's too 1981. -- That potential viral exposure crime scene? My worst nightmare. -- Of course Sarah and Greg are ok. Kind of an interesting story about how that viral epidemic came about though. Makes you wonder...

**(The McCarthysS1E5 "Thanks a Lot, Ronny"I, apparently, measure all shows by 2 Broke Girls now, when it comes to chemistry and "stiff" acting. This show has accomplished more in five episodes than 2 Broke Girls has in three-plus seasons. I laughed at Jackie's multiple failed attempts at pumpkin pie, Marjorie plotting how to break up Katrina and Gerard so he doesn't propose to her, Arthur getting romantic about Marjorie, and Ronny getting crazy over Katrina wanting to make stuffing when that's his thing.

**(Marry MeS1E5 "Thank Me"Gil meeting his cheese soul mate while shopping for cheese and crackers for Annie's first hosted Thanksgiving. ::snort:: -- Annie: The war between wife and mother-in-law is a tale as old as Everybody Loves Raymond. Jake: What? No! Honey, I think you've got it completely wrong. I mean, my mom is known for three things: her sweater sets, her generosity, and keeping her house at a cool 66 degrees and that's it! Annie: Didn't you see what she just did in there? She sacrificed her Thanksgiving hosting rook to king my queen in the dining room with the candlestick! -- LOL: When Annie was dancing to psych herself up for Thanksgiving, I asked "What the hell is she doing?!" And then they showed Jake's face with that exact expression. -- The "tiny table" bit would have been funnier if The Middle hadn't already done it earlier this year, but Myrna's support of Annie's Thanksgiving disaster was really sweet.

**(The MiddleS6E8 "The College Tour") Oh, Sue, checking off "Native American" on all her college forms because she was born in America. I totally felt her lack of confidence visiting colleges though. I was completely overwhelmed and it brought me right back there. -- Why do they all call Devin Levin by her full name?? Also, yay! Axl and Devin! -- A sitcom made me cry. (Are you kidding me?!) When Sue was telling Mike all the things he's done that make him a great dad. -- LOL: Frankie leaving sticky notes all over Axl's bathroom as she cleaned it for him. "This is bathroom cleaner."

**(Marry MeS1E6 "Bruges Me"I don't really know what to make of this whole Flemish Pride festival deal that had Gil and Annie writing some sort of musical, but Kevin (Jake's right, we do need some way to differentiate the Kevins) and his "motorcycle" (scooter! hee!) was pretty amusing.

**(CSIS15E4 "The Book of Shadows"Pretty horrifying opening scene, with the teacher running down the hall, screaming and on fire. -- Witches and PEDs and school faculty sleeping with students and a kid with terminal cancer. What?? -- Is this Detective Crawford guy supposed to fill the police presence vacated by Brass? I am, thus far, unimpressed. Brass seemed to have far more personality and authority.

**(Modern FamilyS6E9 "Strangers in the Night"I totally believed Alex about her boyfriend, right from the start. I'm bummed for her that his father got a job and they had to break up. Alex needs something good. But Alex and Alec? LOL! -- Also LOL: All the little "hints" around that made Phil and Claire think Alex was making up the boyfriend story as she went along, and Claire and Phil's faces when they realized there really was a "bad boy" there to pick up Alex for a date. -- Joe is starting to look like a girl with those long ringlets.

**(MomS2E5 "Kimchi and a Monkey Playing Harmonica"Wow, Ed Asner got old. Well...old-*er*. -- Marjorie's choice in...entertainment was...unexpected. -- Bonnie and Alvin make an odd couple. They also kiss really loudly. -- Ed Asner peeking through the window, watching Bonnie and Christy hugging: creeeeeepy! -- Curious to see how this Baxter/Candace relationship works out. It provides an interesting new dynamic to have Baxter be slightly less loser-ish. --  I have to give them credit with these episode titles. I never know how they're going to work, yet they always do.

**(Sleepy HollowS2E8 "Heartless"Ichabod: Secrecy is a hard habit to break. -- That was a really great conversation between Katrina and Ichabod to start the episode, even if it was, in part, superficially, about the reality tv show they were watching. The undertones though... -- Is it my imagination or is Abbie a bit jealous of Ichabod's attention to Katrina? Not in a romantic way, but he's been "Abbie's" until now. -- Hmmm. When Abraham communicates with Henry via the mirror, he has his head. -- Katrina: Secret desires burn brightest. -- When will Abbie learn that guns never work on these creatures they encounter? -- Hawley was awfully cavalier, whipping out artifact weapons in plain of view and handing them off to Ichabod for protection against the succubus. -- Every time Katrina speaks in...whatever ancient language that is...I start to wonder how long it took her to learn those lines well enough to say them without so much as a hesitation. -- Katrina: Love can be a very dangerous weapon. -- I'm trying to figure out the connection between the visions Henry keeps giving Katrina, the necklace she wears to see Abraham in his headed form, and this baby Henry has in the cradle at Fredericks Manor.

**(Person of InterestS4E9 "The Devil You Know"Excellent location for a shoot out! Cosmetics departments are full of glass counters, many small bottles, and all kinds of mirrors. In fact, with all the places to hide and things to shatter, I'm surprised I've never seen this done before! -- So, Elias' number is up on the Machine for a second time. I think that's only happened one other time, with that little Asian guy, Leon. -- Is it my imagination or has Fusco been dressing better since the "wing man" episode? -- Shaw [to Root]: You go through identities like they're Dixie Cups and I'm one and done? -- I wonder how many times he's asked this? ... Mr Finch: Mr Reese I heard gunfire. Is everything all right? -- Dominic is certainly a formidable opponent for Elias. -- Elias: Do you remember the last time you handed me a firearm? Mr Reese: You aimed it at my head. Don't make me regret it again. -- Root has started calling Shaw by her first name, Sameen.

**(MarryS1E7 "Win Me"If there's a "cousin Scooby," that's exactly what he would look and act like. Right down to saying "ruh roh." -- New item on the Pet Peeve List: 'bae' instead of 'babe'. Ugh. -- When the Kevins got engaged, I never even considered that Annie and Dan-Kevin (as opposed to know, based on the actors' first names) would be planning weddings at the same time. This opens up tons of opportunities for laughter.

**(MomS2E6 "Crazy Eyes and a Wet Brad Pitt"Jill is...scary. And I thought that before she went crazy on Christy and Bonnie. That woman has crazy eyes and the body language to match. -- With that nasty apartment they're living in, after cramming into Marjorie's modest home with all the cats, I can't help but wonder why they don't all end up living in Jill's enormous mansion. Except that would give it a little too much in common with Two and a Half Men, which, no. Emphatically NO.

**(The McCarthysS1E6 "Why Guys Shouldn't Date a Sister's Ex"Because it wouldn't be awkward at all, dating your (pregnant and hormonal) sister's high school ex-boyfriend, the one that broke her heart, who happens to be gay now. LOL. -- Marjorie: Oh, I know she's not going to be happy with you. Ronny: And that's why you're smiling like a cartoon villain? -- Weird: Rick Fox appearing as himself, right after being on the episode of Mom I just watched, as Jill's ex-husband. -- I feel kind of bad for Ronny that Jackie's crazy ruined his chances with Tommy, but two things: one, I think Marjorie might be even more upset than Ronny, and two, why are grown men going by such childish nicknames?

**(Last Man StandingS4E10 "Outdoor Man Grill") Mandy [checking out the pheasants Kyle and Eve brought back from hunting]: Pheasant feathers are really expensive and they're supes hot in fashion right now. Kate Middleton doesn't go anywhere without them. Mike [indicating the pheasants]: Neither do those two. -- Ryan: Oh yum! Dibs on the bulgar pilaf. Kristin: History's most unnecessary dibs. -- Mandy: Eight hats at seven feathers a hat that's...math. -- Vanessa sure had a quick turnaround on not backing Mike's wild game restaurant after how adamantly she shot it down when she learned Mike wanted to back it financially with their money. Truth be told, if Mike wanted to take a business risk, I'd bet on him, judging by the success of Outdoor Man and the size of the house they live in. Not looking forward to how much more we're going to see of Kristin though, as the restaurant manager and Mike's partner. Now I can only hope we balance that with seeing less of Ryan, who is supporting Kristin's dream by taking an overnight delivery route because it pays better.

**(About a BoyS2E7 "About a Duck"Andy looks like a younger, facial-haired version of one of my childhood pastors. -- For all of Marcus' fumbling with social skills, he sure nailed it, initiating a game of "I've always wondered..." with an arguing Andy and Laurie, and asking how they met. -- Assuming it was actually her voice, I'm rather impressed with Minnie Driver's singing.


Monday, December 1, 2014

Snapshot from Along the Broken Road: November 2014

1) A photo of me:

Had my stylist temporarily straighten my hair, just for fun, when I had my cut-and-highlight appointment.

2) Candle scents* this month:
Mountain Lodge. Apple Butter. Orchard Pear. Warm Apple Crisp. Treehouse Memories. Ghostly Treats. Apple Pumpkin. Applewood Orchard. Macintosh and Spice. Apple Spice. November Rain. Cinnamon Caramel Swirl (Bath and Body Works). Pumpkin Buttercream.

3) What I am reading this month (you can find me on Goodreads!):
Beyond This Moment (Tamera Alexander) - A little slow-moving to start, as well as being a somewhat predictable romance, but I have to be honest, I loved the two main characters. A book of this nature is like comfort food: you know what to expect, but that doesn't make it any less enjoyable. I liked getting to know both Molly and James, and the deeper I got into the book, the faster I wanted to turn the pages. Something else I enjoyed about this book is the reminder of a simple but important life lesson: We all do things we wish we could have a do-over for, but some of the decisions we make simply cannot be undone, and the only thing we can do is make better choices moving forward. Shame and guilt can lead us to wish to hide our poor choices, and it can be easy to forget that even the decision to hide the truth of our previous choices can lead to hurt we never expected or intended. The truth, though sometimes difficult to own, is often easier than trying to hide it and then answer for it later, which is almost always inevitable. I'm going to miss James and Molly, now that I've reached the end of this book.
The Sun Also Rises (Ernest Hemingway) - Part of my personal project to re-read some of the books I was "force fed" in school to see if I like them better as an adult, choosing them of my own free will. Working my way through this one still.

4) Calendar image for the month:

Peaceful. So peaceful.

5) New recipes tried this month:
White Chicken Chili - A definite keeper, just needs a couple of minor tweaks.
Reese's Pieces Blondies - Made at T's request. Easy to make. I was a little concerned, because I don't care for peanut butter cookies, but the peanut butter was subtle everywhere but the Reese's Pieces.

6) Restaurants where I ate:
Oceans and Ales (in Williamsburg, VA) with my sister-in-law, when I tagged along while she picked up a few items on Black Friday. Bob Evans for a husband-requested breakfast date.

7) Five things I am loving this month:
1. Finalizing my idea list for this year's Christmas gifts.
2. A couple of spins around Food and Wine Fest with Daniel.
3. The weather is finally starting to show signs of cooling off.
4. Flights that get in early when we have a tight connection to make.
5. Watching my husband hold his great-nephews.

8) Three goals I had this month and three goals for next month:
1. Tend the flower gardens. (I opted against this one when I remembered that newly planted flowers require some coddling while they adapt and being gone for almost a week when there's no rain in the forecast would have been a bad combination.)
2. One magazine for each day in November. Which means I better get going, as I'll be traveling for Thanksgiving. (I got through half of this ambitious goal.)
3. Start walking in the evenings, now that the weather has finally relented. (Loving this! We walk 5-6 times a week and it's one of my favorite parts of the day.)

1. I want to have Christmas in the mail by December 15.
2. It's been a long time since I visited the Disney hotels, to see them decorated for Christmas. Too long.
3. Tackling my To Do List of odds and ends projects while I am off work from noon December 24 through Sunday, January 4.

9) The best part of this month and the worst part of this month:
The best: Being with T. Whether it's walking after work, snuggling up on the couch in the evening, traveling to spend Thanksgiving with his sister and her family. I just genuinely like being around him.
The worst: Tie between the night I must have been sitting on a mosquito, based on the location of the DOZEN bug bites I received, and the tiny breakouts I kept getting right along the edge of my lower lip (ouch) (also, what the heck??).

10) A photo I took this month:

*All scents are Yankee Candle, unless otherwise noted.


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