Sunday, February 27, 2011

Oscar Night.

I did it!!  I watched all the movies nominated for an Oscar (with The Town substituted for 127 Hours).  A lot of these movies were great, as you'd expect.  However, there were some MAJOR duds (Winter's Bone & Toy Story 3, I'm talking to you).  Here's how I ranked them:

1. The Social Network
2. The Fighter
3. The King's Speech
4. The Town
5. Inception
6. True Grit
7. Black Swan
8. The Kids are All Right
9. Toy Story 3
10. Winter's Bone



So, here are my predictions for tonight:

Best Picture
Who I want to win:  The Social Network just edged out the Fighter for my vote
Who will win:  The Social Network (although The King's Speech could be a major spoiler)

Best Leading Actor
Who I want to win:  Colin Firth
Who will win:  Colin Firth

Best Leading Actress
Who I want to win:  Jennifer Lawrence
Who will win:  Natalie Portman

Best Supporting Actor
Who I want to win:  Andrew Garfield-- oh, he wasn't nominated?  Then Christian Bale, who was phenomenal
Who will win:  Christian Bale

Best Supporting Actress
Who I want to win:  Helena Bonham Carter
Who will win:  Melissa Leo

And of course, I'll be rooting for the genius Aaron Sorkin for Best Screenplay and David Fincher for Best Director, both for The Social Network.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

True or False??

Beth from SweetBef's Blog gave me this award a long time ago recently.


It's pretty cool because the "rules" are unique.  Since I have now accepted this award, I have to list five things about myself.  However, only one of these facts will be true! The other four have a bit of truth in them, but are ultimately incorrect.  Think you can guess which one is real?  :)

1.  I lived in Washington, DC for a year before law school working for Senator Richard Burr.

2.  I totaled my car twice within a six month period.

3.  I have never broken a bone in my body.

4.  I've watched soap operas since I was a child.  Even now, I DVR All My Children every day.

5.  One summer during college, I went on tour to the West Coast with my brother's band.

And, of course, I have to tag five other blogs.  I normally cheat and tag "everyone," but this is fun and I want to see what y'all say.  So, I tag...





Monday, February 21, 2011

The Handwriting Post with No Clever Title.

I was tagged with this handwriting meme by a couple blogs and thought it was a cute idea!  Here are the questions:

1. What's your name / blogger name?

2. What's your blog's URL?

3. Write "The quick fox jumps over the lazy dog."

4. Favorite quote?

5. Your favorite song?

6. Your favorite band / singers?

7. Anything else you want to say?

8. Tag 3 - 5 other people.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Epic Weekend.

This weekend was nothing short of awesome.  Friday night, my friend Rebekah and I finally celebrated our birthdays (which are both at Christmas, which means no one is around to celebrate).  Rebekah's parents graciously provided a hotel room for us in Charlotte.

The girls got us "birthday cake."

Amanda was my very own makeup artist for the night.  She did an amazing job.

Sarah and I switched hair for the night-- she curled hers, and I straightened mine.  :)

Happy Birthday (two months later) to me!

April, Emily, Amanda, Rebekah, Sarah, & Me -- Time to hit the town!

Saturday was fairly uneventful.  I did take a pretty long nap to try and recover from Friday night.  And, I realized that I'm definitely not 22 anymore.  A late night out dancing in a loud club followed by only 3 hours of sleep is no longer easy to bounce back from.

But by Sunday, I was good again.  And just in time for the DAYTONA 500!!!  I went to my parents' house to watch the race, and it was as awesome as I had been hoping since last November.  The winner was Trevor Bayne, 20 years old and only his second start in the Sprint Cup Series.


If you know about NASCAR at all, you know what a great win this was for the Wood Brothers team, which is one of the most legendary teams in the sport but also one that hasn't won a race in 10 years.  Such a great day for them.

And now Monday is almost here.  It's going to be a pretty busy week (again) at work.  And, I still have two movies left to watch before the Oscars next weekend, but I'm definitely going to get them all watched!  Hope y'all had a great weekend too.  :)

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Moving On Up.

My firm's office is on the 15th floor of our building.  We only take up a quarter of the office space our floor, but since moving here in 2006, we've been the only people on 15.  That is, until December of last year.

A few months ago, invaders from an aero-engineering company took over the other 3/4 of our floor.  Until then, we had 12 people on our floor.  Now, there's at least 75.  And they're science-y engineering freaks (sorry to you other science-y engineering folks-- you're just totally different creatures than use social science-y legal people).

I miss the days of peace and quiet on the floor.

I miss being able to walk out of my office and not have to dodge a million other people in the hallway.

And most importantly, I miss the days where I could pee without interruption.

Now, it turns out that this other company has decided they want the entire floor.  So much so that they are going to pay for us to move up to the 24th floor.  Which means that they have to pay for the building to renovate that space, to upfit it for our office needs, and for our moving costs (including closing down for a few days to move).

While I'm not super excited about what our new in-office setup upstairs will be like, I will be thrilled to get away from these crazy people.  We'll be sharing that floor with bankers, so I'm crossing my fingers that they will be quieter than our current neighbors.  Or at least that they let me pee in peace.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Spontaneity Tuesday.

So, I've been feeling uninspired to blog the last few days.  I just don't feel like I have much to say.  But, I figure I should just start typing and see what happens.  You've been warned-- no theme or coherency of any kind today.

~ Brad FINALLY got rid of Crazy Michelle last night.  Ding dong! The witch is dead!

Michelle Money Gets Jealous at the Group Rappelling Date in Bachelor Season 15, Episode 16

~ I finally watched the Grammys from Sunday night.  It was so much better with the ability to fast forward.  I've never been a huge Katy Perry fan (although I do LOVE Firework).  But her performance was fantastic.  I hadn't heard the song "Not Like the Movies," but it was so great.  And the "never before seen" footage of her wedding made it really sweet.  And after her horrendous vocals at the AMAs, it was nice to hear that the girl really does have some pipes-- not just an engineered sound.


~ I started Beth Moore's David: 90 Days with a Heart Like His this weekend.  David is one of my favorite Bible characters, so I'm really looking forward to getting into this.


~ After being a dedicated pencil girl for my entire makeup life, I bought the Penultimate liquid eyeliner by MAC last night.  So now I'm on a quest to figure out how to use it without looking ridiculous.

~ Speaking of things I want to learn how to do... I want to make the front braid happen.  But, I don't know how it will look on my crazy curly hair.  Or if I'm talented enough to get it to work.


~ The CEO of Twitter has denied rumors that he is entertaining offers from Facebook and Google.  And thank goodness!  I can only imagine the damage that will come to Twitter if FB takes over.  A Google takeover doesn't scare me nearly as much as FB.  Since discovering the beauty of Twitter, my FB use has GREATLY decreased.  If FB messes up Twitter, I will not be happy.


Well, looky there!  A totally respectable and unplanned blog post.  :)

Friday, February 11, 2011

Lovely Friends.


What I {LOVE} about my friends is...

They are amazing.  I'm so glad that I have a group of friends who share my faith.  We pray for each other, laugh together, go on great adventures together, and share our lives with each other.  I love them and am so thankful that they're around.








And of course my lovely blog/twitter friends, too.  I appreciate you guys so much!!  :)

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Strawberry Goodness.


For Valentine's Day I {LOVE} to bake/cook...

I doubt I'll be doing much baking or cooking for Valentine's Day this year, but I do have a great recipe for you!  I got this DELICIOUS cupcake recipe from a girl I went to high school with.  I've made these for birthdays, baby showers, and for no reason at all.  They've been a huge hit every time.  My mom even made a peach version, which were amazing!

Strawberry Cupcakes with Vanilla Buttercream

(photo credit Lindsay)

Cupcake
1 box white cake mix
3 T. all purpose flour
1 (3 oz.) box sugar-free strawberry jello
1 c. canola oil
½ c. milk
4 large eggs
½ c. crushed strawberries – chop these in a mini food processor until almost a puree

Preheat the oven to 350° and line a muffin pan with cupcake liners.  Mix cake mix, flour, and jello. Add the oil, milk, eggs, and strawberries, mixing at low speed until all of the ingredients are incorporated. Beat the batter for 3 more minutes on medium speed.

Pour the batter into muffin pans so that they are about half full.  Bake at 350° for 18-23 minutes, or until the tops are springy to the touch.

Vanilla Buttercream
3 sticks unsalted butter, softened
3 T. milk, cold
3 t. vanilla extract
6-7 c. powdered sugar

Using a mixer, beat the butter at medium speed until creamy.  Add 1/3 of the powdered sugar and vanilla and beat on low speed until incorporated. Then add the next 1/3 of the powdered sugar and the milk, 1 T. at a time, until incorporated. Finish mixing in the milk and powdered sugar.

The buttercream should be quite white and fluffy. Add as much powdered sugar as needed, depending the desired consistency and sweetness.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Gameday.



White Sandy Beaches are Calling My Name.


If I could travel anywhere this snowy February, I would {LOVE} to go...

The one place in the world that I'm dying to visit is Paris.  


But, it's been sooooo cold here (not to mention that it is even colder in France in February), that I'd really prefer a destination that looks like this:

So I can nap here:

And maybe with one of these in my hand:

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Cheer Up!


When I'm feeling down, to cheer myself up I {LOVE} to...

I'm usually pretty good about not letting myself stay down long.  But on those days when I have the persistent blues, there are a couple things that will always make me feel better.

1. Reading my Bible and prayer. This may sound cliche, but it's so true.  There's nothing like talking with the One who knows me and loves me to get my head straight.  

2. Watching hilarious television.  Two of my faves-- Psych and How I Met Your Mother.  They can always make me laugh.  



3. A change of scenery.  Sometimes you just get down being in the same places all the time.  So, I like to just get out of my office or my house and take a drive or even just go sit outside somewhere for a while.  A little fresh air and sunshine is always good.

Any other good tips for getting rid of the blues?  Join up with Neely, Sam, and Courtney!

Monday, February 7, 2011

Me Time.

This week, I'm linking up with the All You Need is Love Blog Challenge hosted by Neely, Sam, and Courtney.  Fortunately, it's only seven days (instead of 30), so there's a better chance that I can actually make it all the way through.  :)

Chaos Theory

When I need some me time I {LOVE} to... 

I am an independent girl.  I need a lot of "me time."  On weekends, I really need to have either Friday or Saturday night all to myself (Sundays are out as they are spent almost entirely with my family).  During my "me time," it really doesn't matter what I do-- just that I do it alone.  Of course, there's usually lots of tv/movie watching and book reading.  But often, I'll cook or bake or clean my house during this "me time."  Sometimes, like this past Saturday, I'll go to the library for a while to get online and to have a change of scenery.  And if I hadn't cut myself off from all cosmetics purchases for a while, I could spend hours at Sephora just wandering around.  No matter what it is that I'm doing, my "me time" is sacred to me and highly protected.

What about y'all?  Head on over to Neely's to join in!

This weekend, I saw True Grit with Rebekah-- it was great.  Although, if you don't like westerns, this isn't going to make you change your mind.  It was really funny, and Jeff Bridges is awesome.  I think the Best Actor award will come down to him and Colin Firth.  They were both great, but I'd lean toward Colin Firth by just a bit.  Especially given that Jeff Bridges won last year for Crazy Heart.  Hailee Steinfeld was brilliant as well.


I was going to see The Fighter too but ended up not going.  Instead I finished the book Never Let Me Go.  The story was definitely unique, which I loved.  But I thought the author could've gotten me more emotionally invested before the end.  The movie looks like it's more emotional, which will hopefully make it better than the book.  (Also, Andrew Garfield is the lead actor.  Sigh...)


Oh, and since I know you all are dying for an update-- the Daytona 500 is 13 days away and the Bud Shootout is 5.  I love February.  :)

Friday, February 4, 2011

Ah, the Weekend.

Last night I went to see The King's Speech, and it was really amazing.  I've never been a crazy Colin Firth fan, but he was phenomenal.  And given how insane Helena Bonham Carter is in reality, her performance was so great.  I'm not one to get super emotional at movies, but this one definitely made me teary-eyed.  I highly recommend seeing this movie.


Tonight I'm going to see True Grit with Rebekah, and tomorrow will be The Fighter.  Then, I'll be done with all the Oscar nominees that are still in the theaters!  Here's how my list will look tomorrow tonight:

Black Swan

The Fighter

Inception

The Kids Are All Right

The King's Speech

127 Hours The Town

The Social Network

Toy Story 3

True Grit

Winter's Bone

And, of course, Sunday night is the Super Bowl!  I really couldn't care less about either the Steelers or the Packers, but I'll be pulling for the Steelers.  I was a fan of Bill Cowher, so I guess I can still pull for his team now that he's gone.


I'm hoping planning to make some food for the big game, especially some delicious dips and appetizers.  I've already whipped up this Hot Spinach Dip, which just needs to be baked.  And I'm gonna adapt this Buffalo Chicken Dip a little bit.  Maybe some Loaded NachosBaked Onion Rings, Pizza Bites, and Snickerdoodle Blondies.  Okay, clearly I can't make all these things.  But, they all look so good that I can't decide!

Any good Super Bowl recipes that you'd like to share?

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

What I'm Loving Wednesday.


1. I'm loving the song Firework by Katy Perry (not really the video though).


2. I'm loving Origins VitaZing-- I wear it as a tinted moisturizer/ foundation, and it's amazing.

3.  I'm loving that it's only 24 days until the first Yankees spring training game, 55 days until Opening Day at Yankee Stadium, and 18 days until the Daytona 500!



4.  I'm loving my Essie Chinchilly nail polish-- It's the perfect grey color with just a touch of purple.

Photo from product-girl.com

5. I'm loving that I'm going to see The King's Speech tomorrow night.


6.  I'm loving this YouTube video that I found on another blog today.  So cute!!


7. And I'm loving that I have a nice relaxing weekend ahead.  Nothing that I have to do, nowhere that I have to go.  :)

What about y'all?  Head on over to Jamie's and join in!

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Bachelorettes, Start Your Engines.

This week, Brad and the gang (not to be confused with Kool and the Gang) heads to Vegas.  Brad is beyond excited about being in Vegas to "try to figure out" his feelings for the women.  Because Sin City is known as a place for deep self-reflection and soul searching.

Brad drops the ladies off at the most gorgeous suite at Aria.  It's even better than the Bachelorette house in LA.  He shows them around the place before leaving the first date card and scurrying away.  Shawntel gets the one on one.

"Let's end tonight with a bang."
Um, inappropriate double ententre much?  Whatevs.  Brad picks up Shawntel and takes her where every teenage girl wants to go on a date-- the mall.  (Who among us didn't go on dates to the mall in junior high?)  Brad sounds pretty proud of himself for "arranging" this date-- "I think it's every single woman's dream to be able to go from store to store and pick out whatever she wants."  As much as I'd love to be the superior person and find this date totally patronizing and hooker-ish, I really would want this date.  A no-limit shopping spree on the tab of a major television network??  Yes please.  Having to go on a few dates with a lame guy would be totally worth that kind of swag.

Shawntel comes home to rub her loot in the other girls' faces change into a beautiful dress for Date Part II.  She estimates her haul to be "around $5000 each bag" with at least a dozen bags and passes around the goodies for all to see.  Meanwhile, Crazy Eyes imagines various ways to kill Shawntel.  Brad comes to pick her up for Date Part II-- dinner on the roof, where she tells him all about her "profession and passion," being a funeral director.  Brad tries to appear interested, prompting some inappropriate dinner discussion of "vein drain," "orifices," and ear reconstruction.  Please tell me there was a smoother transition to the discussion of her cross-eyed cat, Peaches, than we saw.  And, hallelujah for fireworks to make the weird date talk stop!!  Shawntel gets a rose.  (For the record, this is the first date of this season that has not had any water activities.)

"Let's go speed dating."
Group date time for all the girls except the Ashleys (and Shawntel, duh).  The "ladies" head to Las Vegas Motor Speedway.  Crazy Eyes gets an early start with the insane talk, "I am fun, hot, and you should see me in a race car."

I still cannot believe that the ABC producers put Emily on the NASCAR date-- it's nothing short of absolutely rude and disrespectful.  She hangs in there like a champ, drives around the race track, and they all act like she has this huge epiphany-- as if driving around the track that was the site of her fiance's death has finally brought her some peace and closure.  "While I'm driving, I'm not thinking about going the fastest -- I'm just driving around thinking the first few laps are for Ricky, and the last lap is for me."   She's one classy girl.

Brad has to spend quite a bit of time during the evening dealing with Emily, both at the track and at the pool afterwards (welcome back, bikinis!).  He's understandably a bit nervous about trying to fill Ricky Hendrick's shoes, given that Ricky was her only love and Brad has has more than one.  Emily responds with the line of the night-- "Well, you're a little bit older than me, my dear."  Oh hello, elephant in the room.

Brad's dedicated attention to Emily does NOT go over well with the others (especially after he "planned" a special picnic for her during the last rose ceremony).  Alli gets right to the point-- "Just because somebody comes in with the worst story, it means they get the most attention?"  Oh Alli, didn't anyone ever tell you that bitterness is not attractive?

It's awkward time again on the group date when Brad joins the collective group of "ladies."  Crazy Eyes "rescues" him from the women, saying "Brad is a man baby-sitting a bunch of girls." While true, this is definitely a pot calling the kettle black situation.   No crying for Crazy during her time with Brad.  She's too busy sexually assaulting him.  Much to the chagrin of the "ladies," Emily gets the hard-earned rose.

THE BACHELOR - "Episode 1505" - The Bachelor must face the difficult task of taking Ashley H. and Ashley S., two women he's fond of, on the famed two-on-one date, vowing to have fun - even with a painful choice looming at the end of the night. What a surprise Brad has in store for the ladies! They go backstage of the hit show "Viva ELVIS by Cirque du Soleil," where they discover they'll be a part of the performance later that night. But there's a catch: the number they'll perform is a duet, and Brad will need to decide which woman will stay and perform with him. The tension filled dinner does nothing to make Brad's decision any easier, as he sends one woman home in tears, on "The Bachelor," MONDAY, JANUARY 31 (8:00-10:01 p.m., ET), on the ABC Television Network. (ABC/ISAAC BREKKEN)BRAD WOMACK, ANDREA "ZIGGY" ZIEGLER (DANCE MASTER), ASHLEY S., ASHLEY H."Come swing with the king.  Two girls, one rose-- One stays, one goes."
It's survival of the fittest time for the Ashleys (Sweet Ashley vs. Dentist Ashley).  They head to Cirque du Soleil's Viva Elvis.  Sweet Ashley's dress is beautiful (sadly, I can't find a picture).  But, she starts off with a horrible attitude, feeling insecure and lacking-- "I feel like I'm always having to convince someone to be with me."  The date is pretty anti-climactic, and Brad ultimately picks Dentist Ashley probably because she wasn't a total stick in the mud all night.  Sweet Ashley cries.  A lot.  (Again, no water activities on the date!  And, in Vegas of all places.)

Therapy Session.
This week, Brad's therapist figures he can say these words of wisdom via telephone-- "Keep being real."  "Keep being open and you."  "Trust yourself."  "Let everyone who's experiencing you be inspired by that."  No need to fly to LA when they have perfectly good cameras in Austin to video you giving that profound advice.

Rose Ceremony time!
Tonight on Brad Says the Darndest Things: "I just don't need drama in my life."  Well, then you went on the wrong show, sweetie.  Brad has a sit down with Slappy because he's concerned about her drama level from their group date.  She has no clue-- "I think we're in a good place."  Brad makes a PRICELESS face to this comment, but she continues to be happy living in delusional-ville.  Brad finally makes Alli feel special by baking her a cake decorated with green ("Because I was wearing green the first night we met!").  Crazy Eyes molests Brad again, but not to worry-- he loves it.

Ultimately, Princess Marissa and Lisa go home.  Slappy escapes by the skin of her teeth.  And, of course Crazy Eyes sticks around to wreak more havoc on our psyches.  Sad for Lisa, who got more airtime after she was eliminated than she ever got before.

Exotic locations coming.  Along with a lot more tears, apparently.  Only a few more weeks of this "journey."  Let me know what you thought!

ps-- Did y'all see the commercial with Anne Hathaway and James Franco for the Oscars?  The red blanket is my favorite.  :)