Blogmas Day 25: So This is Christmas

Blogmas - 2019

It’s raining & foggy in Minnesota, on Christmas. Most of my merry making happened yesterday since that’s how we did things growing up. Christmas day was spent at Mass & eating dinner. I also spent a large portion of the day cleaning. I tried relaxing in the bath but then noticed that the tubs needed cleaning, then I decided to go through my bathroom cupboards and throw out at stuff I wasn’t using. This led to cleaning the kitchen cupboards out and then the oven 😂 Then I watched Die Hard and had some pie. I just have a few items to take care of tomorrow before my vacation. I was supposed to post my December beauty favorites today but do you ever start something that ends up taking way longer than anticipated? That was like everything I did today. I will post them tomorrow and hopefully the sun will come out for photos. Anyway, I’ll just wish you & yours a Happy Christmas. What did you get up to today? If you don’t celebrate Christmas, what do you do on the extra days off? I’ve always wondered this, to a lot of folks this was just another Wednesday. What’s your Christmas wish? Mine is for greater understanding & empathy for others this year.

I think I’m going to get in one more viewing of The Grinch & enjoy some tea ☺️

Blogmas Day 16: The Holiday

Blogmas - 2019

I am not a rom-com kinda’ gal unless we’re talking the Brat Pack era films or anything with Meg Ryan and Tom Hanks. I think that rom-coms portray an unrealistic idea of love and being in love. I do know some couples that seem like they are straight out of a film script but not many. I mean, not everyone can get engaged during the Holidazzle (barf, by the way). Does that mean everyone else’s relationships are bad? No, it means that most people probably have real life relationships without the ridiculousness of manufactured romance. Anyway, The Holiday was on while I was making cookies this weekend and I was shocked at how much I enjoyed this movie!

Holiday 2

The movie starts where all of these movies seem to start, heartbreak. Iris finds out that her love interest has just become engaged and Amanda has just broken up with her boyfriend. Iris is a plain Jane type (I mean, as plain as the stunning Winslet could be) and Amanda is a jet setting business mogul, the two could not be more opposite. Looking for a change of scenery, the two swap living spaces – is this a thing? It sounds like something that I would be interested in doing so let me know if you want to swap spaces for a while 😀 Iris heads to the states and Amanda heads to Surrey. Of course, the two women fall in love with unlikely new acquaintances overseas. I was surprisingly pleased with the male leads in this one, Jude Law is your standard rom-com fare although, I like that he has kids in this one. Jack Black was a pleasant change from the usual hunks. Everyone loves a funny man but he was delightful in this role. Kate Winslet is hands down my favorite actress, I enjoy most anything that she is in. Aside from Titanic which is ironic since that’s what launched her career (more on this later). It is wildly unrealistic, I mean, maybe two people could meet and fall in love under said circumstances but probably not. I think what I enjoy most about this one is that it reminds me of older films in this genre that were wildly unrealistic with a touch of perhaps it could happen. It is a long movie but from start to finish, it’s just fun. I think it has definitely become a new must-watch holiday movie for me! If you haven’t seen it and aren’t really into this genre of movies, I would still recommend giving it a watch.

Holiday 3

Holiday 1

Let me know if you have seen this one and if you were a fan or not! Also, legit let me know if you want a little holiday in the Twin Cities and I will come to wherever you are. Thanks for reading!

💙

Blogmas Day 5: Favorite Holiday Movies

Blogmas - 2019

I thoroughly enjoy holiday movies, have I watched the same handful of them over and over for the last 20 years? Pretty much but for some reason they never get old. It probably helps that I usually just have them playing in the background while I’m doing other festive things but I really do look forward to watching them every year. They’re wholesome, predictable and all around fun!

Amilya Regular

A young boy is left home alone after wishing that his family would disappear. The posh family home is the target of two local burglars, he has to defend the homestead. It’s terrifyingly plausible when you actually think about it. I just have to say that the remake will never work because there are hundreds of ways to track your kids these days, it will just be ruined!

Amilya Regular

Does this movie have any actual plot? It doesn’t seem like it but still a classic. I think that every child has that one gift on their list that they know is just a dream but want it anyway. A tragic trip to the mall Santa, a really bizarre Christmas dinner at a Chinese restaurant and one frazzled housewife. It’s a delight.

Amilya Regular

Most everyone in my life roasts me for enjoying this movie so much but I can’t help it. Arnold forgot to purchase the hottest toy of the season and heads out on Christmas Eve to secure the item. I love that it takes place in Minnesota, I think it’s hysterical and Phil Hartman is so good as the creepy, single dad neighbor.

Amilya Regular

Another dad flick, Tim Allen is a recently divorced dad who tries to give his young son a great Christmas and unwittingly becomes Santa. I think they could have left out the whole part where the mom takes custody away from Santa but it still has a happy ending.

Amilya Regular

Now that I’m thinking about it, this one is on the sad side too. Charlie Brown is the most disillusioned 8-year old ever. He is made director of the Christmas play which is bound to flop since he’s Charlie Brown but actually turns into a delightful anti-consumerism message that was lost on me as a child.

Amilya Regular

Amilya Regular

Amilya Regular

Amilya Regular

Amilya Regular

Let me know what holiday films you enjoy, thanks for reading!

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31 Nights of Halloween: The Shining (1980)

31 Nights of Halloween

Stanley Kubrick’s film adaptation of King’s The Shining is pretty good if you haven’t read the book but also totally sucks if you have. He left out the most hair raising parts and instead went for shock value. It leaves out my absolute favorite part of the book where the giant topiary animals start to surround Jack outside of the weird maze on the property. But of course kept in the decayed, old lady corpse. Anyway…

Jack Torrance, a failing writer, his wife Wendy and son Danny are headed to a secluded inn that’s closing for the off-season. They will be looking after the property with no access to the outside world. Of course, the inn is haunted and weird things start happening. Unfortunately for Danny, he possesses the shining which allows him to see into the inn’s tragic past. Jack’s sanity and sobriety quickly deteriorate putting his family in danger.

I just don’t love this adaptation, the only element that somewhat redeems it is the atmosphere of the hotel Kubrick used. Which, is not the Stanley Hotel that the book used but still plenty creepy. I think it’s more accurate to say that the movie is influenced by the book but if you haven’t read it, you probably wouldn’t know the difference and it’s a decent movie otherwise.

🖤

31 Nights of Halloween: Hocus Pocus

31 Nights of Halloween

Clearly, I am mostly failing at sticking to my watch list and completely failing at watching something each night. In my defense, it was a rough weekend – this nasty cold is going around, again. My neighbors were acting like complete dickheads, again. The weather was soggy and cold, we did not get any snow which I am pretty disappointed about but the leaves look stunning. I mostly read this weekend and it was time well spent. Tonight’s film is a classic from my childhood, Hocus Pocus.

This movie begins where all witch-y movies worth their potion begin, somewhere in Colonial America during the witch trials. Now, I hate to quibble but the trials ended in May 1693 so the Sanderson sisters would have probably been spared by their puritanical neighbors. I get that it is way cooler to come back on the 300th year anniversary and not the 299th year and some odd days anniversary 😛 Anyway, the Sanderson sisters are in the midst of luring a young girl away from her home so that they can steal her youth. Her brother, Thackery Binx sees his sister being kidnapped and tries to save her. Sadly, and quite tragically for a children’s movie, he does not save her and the witches turn him into a cat that is cursed with eternal life. The puritans ascend on the witches’ hovel and hang them but not before Winifred casts a spell ensuring that the sister will be back. Feline Thackery tries to approach his parents but is kicked away which remains the saddest part in the entire film. to this day.

Fast forward 300 years, 90’s Salem, the best Salem and we meet Max and Dani Dennison who just moved to town from LA. Dani loves all of the local lore but Max is more skeptical and overall hates their new home. I never understood this as a child because all I have ever wanted to do was live in Salem. He does like Allison, a local girl who’s family used to operate the Sanderson cottage as a museum until it had to be closed because too many spooky things kept happening. Max convinces the girls to check the cottage out and insanity ensues. He ends up lighting the Black Flame Candle and bringing the Sanderson sisters back who hatch a plan to steal the lives of all the children in Salem. With the assistance of Binx, they foil the sisters’ plans and learn a valuable lesson about how helpful drunk adults are on Halloween.

I love this one, I have probably watched it a thousand times yet it remains a classic and annual must-watch.

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31 Nights of Halloween: Grimm (2011)

31 Nights of Halloween

Well, I was supposed to watching Chopping Mall tonight but I can’t find it. I really should have pulled out my movies when I made my list but it didn’t occur to me at the time. Instead, I watched a few episodes of Grimm. I loved this show, up until the last two seasons. Each episode is based loosely on a Brothers Grimm tale. The main character, Nick is a detective who finds out that he is grimm which is someone who can see the Grimm fairy tale creatures for what they are. His ancestors have been tracking and killing the creatures of decades.

The first episode is a classic tale of Little Red Riding Hood and the wolf. Nick and his partner Hank are investigating the slaying of a college student when Nick starts to see weird things. His aunt who is very ill, arrives in town and tells him that they need to talk. Unfortunately for the both of them, she has been followed by another being who kills grimms and she is delayed in passing down her knowledge to him. Meanwhile, a little girl goes missing and the detectives think the two cases are related. Nick meets Monroe, one of the big, bad wolves who helps him solve the case and fills in some of the missing pieces about his grimm history. The two make an unlikely team but their friendship is on of my favorite elements of the entire series. Hank and Nick bring the bad guy in and the little girl is found unharmed.

The show is set in Portland, I’ve always dreamed of living there and the foggy, damp atmosphere is the perfect backdrop to this spooky show. Overall, it’s a fun series with unique story line and an enjoyable cast.

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Check out what else I’m watching: 31 Nights of Halloween Watch List

31 Nights of Halloween: Friday the 13th (1980)

31 Nights of Halloween

Ch-ch-ch-kah-kah-kah. A group of sexy teenagers are hired to work at Camp Crystal Lake where a small boy drowned decades ago. What could possibly go wrong, except everything…

Spoiler: everybody dies, well most everybody. Jason Voorhees, while attending summer camp accidentally drowns and his mother blames the negligent camp counselors. In the years following the accident, a string of incidents leads to the camp shutting down amid rumors that it’s cursed. Under new ownership, the camp is set to reopen. The town crazy tries to warn the kids about the camp’s reputation but is unable to convince them that they may be in trouble. One by one, the teens are picked off by who we assume is Jason Voorhees who is somehow still haunting the camp. We soon find out that it’s actually Mrs. Voorhees killing everyone to avenge her son. We only catch a glimpse of Jason at the very end of the movie and really, he was scarier when we didn’t know what he looked like or if he was even alive. The isolated cabin setting, unseen killer, extreme weather event and teenage naivete all contribute to the creep factor of this classic slasher.

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Check out what else I’m watching: 31 Nights of Halloween Watch List