Monday, May 30, 2011

{Happy Memorial Day}

So true... Freedom is a gift afforded to us by the men and women in our armed forces who put their lives on the line everyday to protect it.  Some of which pay with the ultimate price.  May we remember them not only today but always.

Friday, May 27, 2011

{Happy Weekend!}

The "unofficial" start of summer is here!

With it brings all the extra-curricular activities of the school year drawing to a close (my girl scouts had their end of the year party last Friday).  I am most looking forward to the lazy days of summer ahead, waking up at our leisure, spending quality time with Lil Diva & Lil Man, and enjoying the outdoors.  

But before that, there is this beautiful holiday weekend to enjoy.... In the works:

* Watching Pirates of the Caribbean in 3D (a must when Johnny Depp is involved!)

* Prepping the backyard for the pool.

* BBQ burgers,  chicken & shrimp shish kebabs, potato & pasta salads.

* (Safely) Soaking in the rays with my pile of June magazines.

* Visiting the local homemade ice cream parlor.

Last, but certainly not least,  on Monday we will take a moment to reflect on the true meaning of the holiday.... to remember those men and women of our armed forces who have died while in military service, fighting to assure that we continue to live in the land of the free, home of the brave.  Hope you will too.

Have a great weekend!

 photo: Pininterst

Thursday, May 26, 2011

{Movie Review} Thor

Growing up with a comic book enthusiast for a brother, I suppose being a fan of comic book characters come to life in movies is only natural.  Of course everyone knows the stories of the more popular comic book superheroes like Superman, Spiderman, and Batman.  Seeing the lesser talked about characters stories made into feature films is refreshing.  (Who really needs a Spiderman and Superman reboot when it hasn't even been 10 years since the last reboot was done?)

The movie tells the story of Thor, the God of Thunder, an arrogant positioned to become the next King of Asgard... that is, until he defiantly goes against his father, King Odin's rules and wages a war against the Frost Giants of Jotenheim putting himself and his friends in danger.  King Odin is forced to intervene in order to save the lives of Thor, his brother, Loki, and his friends, breaking the truce between the two realms.  As punishment for his defiance, Thor is stripped of his powers and banished to Earth along with his hammer, the mjolnir, which now cannot be wielded by anyone unworthy of it's power.

Penny for my thoughts?  

I thought the movie was good, but not great. The costumes and special effects were good, but I think the movie didn't have the "wow factor" of other comic book movies.  I think the story line lacked more superhero worthy excitement and suspense.. Chris Hemsworth was the perfect actor for the role and he was wonderful eye candy.  It is definitely a movie I would recommend  to wait and watch on DVD.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Wednesday Words of Wisdom

"Life is one big road with lots of signs. 
So when you riding through the ruts, 
don't complicate your mind. 
Flee from hate, mischief and jealousy. 
Don't bury your thoughts, put your vision to reality. 
Wake Up and Live!"
- lyrics from Wake Up and Live, Bob Marley

Monday, May 23, 2011

{What's Playing.....}

Love Adele.... Love this song. Enough said.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

7 Little Facts....

Heather from Chickabug, posted this fun little tag. I thought it was a great way for me to share a few little facts about me....

1- I am a caramel-holic.  There is probably nothing I will NOT eat that contains caramel. (Side note: my two, also, have picked up this habit.)

2- I was a runner-up in a NYC beauty pageant as a teen.

3- I have performed on the historic stages of Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, & Madison Square Garden.

4- While on vacation in Puerto Rico in 1988, I got to hang out and even ride in Ricky Martin (yes, Livin La Vida Loca, Ricky)yellow Mitsubishi Eclipse.

5- My dream job would be either a personal assistant or a party planner.

6- Music is an integral part of my life.... So much that I can be speaking with someone and certain phrases or statements conjure up song titles in my head.  Fortunately, I can act out on these inclinations when speaking to my brother and sister.  My sister feels if I were ever to get a tattoo (Never Happening!) a music note would be the obvious choice.

7- I have a strong aversion to doors/cabinets/drawers left open.  Not sure why, but if I see one open, I immediately have to close it.

What are 7 little facts about you, you'd like to share?

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Wednesday Words of Wisdom

Each of us has a fire in our hearts for something....
find it and keep it lit.

- Mary Lou Retton
photo via tumblr

Monday, May 16, 2011

{The Weekend Review} Lil' Man's Special Day

My Lil' Man made his first Holy Communion.....

It's hard to believe this is the same beautiful baby boy with the biggest set of brown eyes and mile long eyelashes I held yesterday.  It really does seem like yesterday.  By luck, we sat in the aisle directly beside him.  I couldn't help but stare at him thinking how quickly time passes. Seeing him all dressed up in his navy suit and tie was bittersweet.  Here, before me, stood a young man.  No longer the cherubic baby I christened in this very church eight years earlier.

It reminded me of a conversation I had with him one morning a few weeks ago.  He usually lets me cuddle him in the mornings when I wake him up for school. I usually give him kisses and tell him I love my baby boy.  On one particular morning he decided I can no longer call him "my baby".  Broke my heart!

Lil Man: I'm not a baby.

Me: But you'll always be my baby.

Lil Man: (sternly) I am not a baby. You can't call me that.

Me: Well, are you my Lil Man then? Can I call you that?

Lil Man: You can call me that, but not baby. OK.


Needless to say, the weekend was spent with family celebrating a major milestone in Lil Man's life.  As always, we enjoyed spending time together and reminiscing on how much he has grown.  It's so important to cherish every moment because the saying "They will grow in a blink of an eye", is oh so true.

Hope everyone had a lovely weekend!

Thursday, May 12, 2011

{Penny for My Thoughts} Where Have You Been?

I have been wonderfully engrossed in the new toy Mr. Man gave me for Mother's Day....

Nook Color!
I am in love with it! So portable, light, and compact.... and the case is ever so stylish!

Two books have been added to the library, one of which I am reading currently and will be reviewing on Monday.  It's so much fun getting "lost" in a great novel.
Hope everyone is having a wonderful week!

photo (1) , (2)

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Wednesday Words of Wisdom

We grow great by dreams. All big men are dreamers. They see things in the soft haze of a spring day or in the red fire of a long winter's evening. Some of us let these great dreams die, but others nourish and protect them; nurse them through bad days till they bring them to the sunshine and light which comes always to those who sincerely hope that their dreams will come true.
- Woodrow Wilson

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Happy Mother's Day!

Wishing all Moms around the world,
a very happy Mother's Day!

Thursday, May 5, 2011

{Penny for My Thoughts} Praying for a Cure....

 Circa 1960's

This is my grandma.... I love this photograph.  Proudly sitting behind the wheel of her very own vehicle, which she worked long hard hours to save up for and purchase all on her own.  She met, and fell in love with a man in the United States Army at the tender age of 14.  By the time she was 19 she had given birth to 4 children.  Unfortunately, her love story didn't end with happily ever after.  They divorced while still in her early twenties, and this young woman, with 4 young children in tow, went on to work and support her brood completely on her own.

As a child, I remember going to visit her in a beautiful apartment building along Park Avenue, in the heart of midtown Manhattan which she kept pristine. This building was not only home for her, but her place of employment. She was the building manager... a rarity.  It's no secret most building managers are male.  But my grandma proved that she can do anything, and everything a man in this profession can do.

To say that today it pains me to see the shell of the woman that once was is a huge understatement.  Ten years ago, grandma started showing signs of Alzheimer's.  She went shopping in her neighborhood and was returning home when suddenly, she didn't remember where "home" was. She stood in the middle of the sidewalk trying not to appear as though something was wrong.  A passerby must've seen the look of confusion in her eyes and asked her "Is everything OK?"   She told her she was trying to get home, but didn't know where to go.  The kind woman asked to see her license and walked her home.  A mere 2 blocks away.

Because she didn't get the proper medical attention for her symptoms sooner, her faculties began to deteriate quicker than a person who starts the treatments immediately.  3 years ago, upon seeing how bad she was during a visit, my mom decided to move in with her and become her caregiver.  Anyone who has dealt with loved ones with Alzheimers knows, this is no easy undertaking.  They begin to regress and act like young children.  Although she takes her medication religiously, grandma, each day is getting worse.  She can do the basics any preschool school age child can do: use the restroom, bathe (when told), and feed herself.  She can laugh and play and have a good time. But, like a young child, she can not be left unsupervised.  When unattended, she has destroyed a storage container of make-up, eaten all the sweets in the kitchen, put objects not intended to be eaten in her mouth, and has attempted to "cook".  And like a child who doesn't get his/her way, she throws tantrums.  When no one is looking, she hides items, then can't recall where she has put them. But perhaps the worse, is realizing that this once vibrant, independent, hard working woman is gone forever.... never to be seen again.

Grandma 2 years ago

My heart goes out to my mother who each day is coming to the harsh realization that she can not do this on her own. She has no help from her siblings, so this means she bears all the weight on her shoulders, and as each day passes, the constant need for care and supervision is making my Mom weary.

Alzheimer's is defined as one form of dementia that gradually gets worse over time. It affects memory, thinking, and behavior.  Memory impairment, as well as problems with language, decision-making ability, judgment, and personality, are necessary features for the diagnosis.  What the definition doesn't include is the fact.... It is a disease in which you slowly watch the person "die" before they have physically gone. My girl scouts and I put in time in a nursing home with an Alzheimer's unit, and we have seen how in the end.... the body is there, but the mind...the person who once was.... is long gone.

I pray, with all the medical advances being made on a daily basis, that someday we will see a cure to this terribly debilitating & devastating disease.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Wednesday Words of Wisdom

"Carry out random acts of kindness, 
with no expectation of reward,
safe in the knowledge that one day 
someone might do the same for you."
- Princess Diana

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

{Color My World} Golds & Nudes

A few more beauties from The MET Costume Institute Gala 2011....

 Renee Zellweger in Carolina Herrera

 Blake Livey in Chanel Couture

Gwenyth Paltrow in Stella McCartney

 Diane Kruger in Jason Wu

Jessica Alba in Ralph Lauren

Naomi Watts in Stella McCartney

Monday, May 2, 2011

{Having a Ball @ The MET} The Costume Institute Gala 2011

So much eye candy! Just to wear one of these designer gowns would be a dream come true for me...

Here are my favorites of the evening:

Gisele in Alexander McQueen
(only a woman as statuesque as her can pull this beauty off)

Madonna in Stella McCartney
(so old Hollywood glamour *LOVE* )

Penelope Cruz in Oscar de la Renta

Ashley Greene in Donna Karan
(might very well be my favorite of the evening)

Jennifer Hudson in Vera Wang

Salma Hayek in Alexander McQueen

photos via PopSugar & Just Jared

Sunday, May 1, 2011

{Weekend Wrap-Up}

What a beautiful weekend!  It was quite busy, but extremely enjoyable......

* Woke up bright and early Friday to watch the Royal Nuptials with Lil Diva 
while dining on fresh scones for breakfast.

* Watched Lil Man & Lil Diva perform on the field of a beautiful minor league stadium for a great cause.

* Ate dinner at a drive-in restaurant.

* Snuggled up with Mr. Man on the sofa to watch a movie after a wonderful Saturday afternoon.

* Spent an extremely enjoyable hour chatting and laughing on the phone with my Mom ....
so glad she is not only my Mom but one of my Best Friends.

* Found an unexpected two hours to go shop for Mom & MIL Mother's Day gifts.

* Played a game with Lil Man & watched Enchanted with Lil Diva before putting them to bed.

I hope everyone else had a nice weekend.  Wishing everyone a wonderful week ahead!