My Star-Studded Movie Moments or It’s All About Me!!!

 

The Academy Awards are about to take place so what better time than now to share my top five movie moments. Not all of them have to do with movies exactly, but each is related to the film industry in some manner.

nora_ephron1. When the late, great, beloved Nora Ephron wrote the screenplay When Harry Met Sally, she made my life, and I think many others’ lives, a little happier. I went to the theater by myself, got a bag of freshly popped popcorn, and sat in my favorite seat on the very last row of the theater. The show began and it was more wondrous than I had even imagined it would be. Every little piece of my experience was prime. As I left the theater, hanky in hand, I said to myself, “Never forget these last few hours because they were priceless.”

charlton2. I had the joy of being in New York with my two sisters years ago, and we were staying in, what else, The Pierre Hotel. One of my sisters was a quite personable and very outspoken. The other of my sisters is shy. We walked onto the elevator and who should be riding down with us but Charleston Heston. For you whippersnappers, he starred in Ben Hur oh so many years ago. My people-loving sister said, “Mr. Heston, I would like for you to meet my sisters.” My shy sister was trying not to faint as I looked on with pride and approval. He didn’t seem that interested in the introduction but he was civil.

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3. My son and I were in New Orleans in 1992-ish taking a break from a conference we were attending. As we were strolling along the River Walk, we saw that there was filming going on. Both of us are film geeks, so naturally, we walked through the crowd scene as they were shooting. The movie was The Pelican Brief, and an interesting and probably forgotten piece of trivia is that Julia Roberts and Lyle Lovett were cuddling on the set. Later we heard they married. Very short union!

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4. Beth Henley, a playwright from right here in Mississippi, wrote a play, The Miss Firecracker Contest, that was later adapted for the big screen. The film was funny, very Southern, and uplifting. When I heard that filming was taking place in nearby Yazoo City, I grabbed my sons and off we went. We were going to be in this movie. Through several hot days, we baked in the scorching Mississippi summer sun. Lucky for us, when we heard the fireworks scene was shooting at night, we trekked back for one last chance. I kept trying to be in a place where I would be seen in the shot. When I found the perfect spot, the director said I was wearing too much white. I grabbed my purse, pulled out a scarf, and tied it around my skirt. If you pause at exactly the right second, you can see me reclining on the knoll.

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5. And, last, but not least (remember, it’s all about me), to make a long story short, I drove to Canton, Mississippi because Sandra Bullock was starring in A Time to Kill and I was hoping to make the cut as a town member. I was standing on the street when Joel Schumaker, the director, came walking toward me. I asked if he had something to tell me concerning my walk through a scene. He told me he didn’t, but he did need to use the restroom where I was standing.

I’m not saying I had a stellar career in the world of cinema but I will say I have had a few neat experiences.:)

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A Good Match

via Photo Challenge: A Good Match

Ben Huberman on the Daily Post challenged his readers to come up with a “good match.” Mine is a bottle arrangement I made in my bedroom. I’m crazy for bottles, and I love colors, so this is a perfect decor statement for me. My OCD kicks in from time-to-time and makes me rearrange the locations of the bottles within the arrangement, but that makes me happy, too.

Here’s how they look:

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Can you tell my tastes fall somewhere between Gypsy, Bohemian, dumpster-diving?

Aesthetic

Webster’s Dictionary says the word “aesthetic” can be explained as “a branch of philosophy dealing with the nature of beauty, art, and taste and with the creation and appreciation of beauty.” Now, what in the world could be better than this philosophy? I mean who wouldn’t want to study this philosophy all day long?

When food is viewed as aesthetically pleasing, it indicates that the food at least looks like something you can hardly resist eating. For me, that means desserts, unfortunately. My love of all things sweet has forced me to look at millions of baked, frosted, and candied edibles over the years. In fact, I have a Pinterest page dedicated to doughnuts, no matter how they’re spelled. Take a look. Yes, the beauty of the pastry has much to do with the associated level of craving. This photo is from the Sprinkle Bakes site.

Lovely! And yet again, wedding color. Wish I could do my own food for the wedding. I'd have a blast baking.:

In the realm of art, beauty is always in the eye of the beholder, but there are those works of art that have universal appeal. Immanuel Kant, the 18th-century German philosopher, argued that it was not the piece of art itself that was beautiful or not, but the way in which individuals respond to it. I think a good example of Kant’s idea is street art. Some folks see street art as vandalism, others see it rebellious, and many see it as remarkably beautiful and transforming ART. Here is an example of one of German street painter Edgar Muller’s work:

sidewalk art!! Amazing.:

And one my favorite areas for appreciating beauty is in the field of interior design. For me, when I see a room, of whatever style, that is balanced, textured, unified, and inviting, it makes me feel that all is well.

Cinnie May of JBM Designs and featured in New York Spaces
Beautiful Examples Of Scandinavian Interior Design 13
impressiveinteriordesign.com/beautiful-examples-of-scandanavian-interior-design/
Adding personality to a simple space is kinda my thing. Sometimes that personality is a sophisticated, refined, French woman and sometimes it’s a young, fun, modern party girl. When you start with a basic foundation it’s so much easier to bring the crazy in a way that doesn’t feel permanent or too committal – and... Read More …:
https://stylebyemilyhenderson.com/blog/a-modern-makeover-with-method

 

Whatever your aesthetic may be, join me in celebrating all kinds of art, design, style, and genre of beautiful things everywhere. And let me know what is aesthetically pleasing to you.

New Blog Site and Five Blogs I Like

Since my last blog, I have changed my site’s theme. I loved my old look with the rising balloons. It really represented my style and my point of view. But the practicality of the old theme was what was bothering me. The words were small and difficult to read on the blue background, and the page was a bit confusing to navigate. So, for a more readable and easy to access blog site, I chose the one you are looking at now.

Today I want to share with you five blog sites that I really like, along with the reasons I think these blog-writers are doing such a great job. Let me know if you have some favorite sites also. Let’s get our talented friends more of the recognition they deserve!

I like very much to read Dear Kitty. Some blog because I so agree with her political views and I admire her ability to explain why she feels the way she does about what is currently going on in Washington. This is not to say that I don’t enjoy her blogs when she is writing about subjects not related to our national government. She often writes about the environment, animals, and other topics of interest to nature-lovers and those concerned with the environment.

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Another favorite of mine is Lowlife Magazine because of the writer’s edginess, love of movies, and his spectacular street art finds. I am never disappointed when I click onto his collection of quirky and extremely interesting collection of ideas and photographs.

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Mega Luxus has some of the most beautiful photographs of art, sculpture, decor, design, and other fascinatingly lovely things that I have seen. Get your creativity boost by heading over to this fabulous website.

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If I ever have a rock band (which I can’t really see happening) I’m going to name it after the blog Eat Sweets and Be Merry! I am truly a “sweet-aholic” and would eat sweets only all the time if I could. At Eat Sweets and Be Merry there are recipes for desserts, cakes, lemon curd, and so many other sugary delights. Just experiencing her site gives me my sugar fix for the day!

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I also have a weakness for Wanderless in Beruit because I am fascinated about what a lovely, young girl says, thinks, and does in Lebanon. Malak’s fresh and positive take on the world, everyday activities, and her life makes me feel better about the state of our planet, in general.

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This list was great fun to assemble, and I plan to do it again from time to time. Do you have any special blogs you’d like for others to enjoy?

 

Fairy Gardens

I have been in love with these sweet little gardens since I began seeing them on Pinterest a few years ago. I love to make things like this with my granddaughter, but we just have not gotten around to this project. I think maybe this summer we might make a fairy garden on the covered porch so it will be protected, because I can’t imagine letting one get damaged in any way.

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Having never really been into miniatures, I can’t figure out what the allure of these little neighborhoods is for me, but for me they really have an intrinsic charm.

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It seems they can be whimsical or downright intricate, both of which are just fine with this girl! And there are variations on the “broken pot” look.

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And they can be a themed garden, like this farm miniature:

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You can even get the, as we say in the South, store-bought versions, but for my money, that’s like cheating and not nearly as much fun.

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If you have made a fairy garden, please share it here. If my granddaughter and I get one made, we’ll certainly share our project.

I feel a bit happier just thinking about these tiny treasures. Hope they brought a smile to your face, too!

The Greatest Musical in the World

Now I have painted myself into a corner since it will be very difficult to choose just one Broadway musical out of the many I dearly love. And, like any other beloved list, I could choose several musicals just for one very important memory, song, or production.

For example, I could say that Carousel was my favorite musical because it was the first one I ever heard. I was visiting my older sister in Rhode Island when I was five-years-old, and she had a phonograph record of the film cast, including Shirley Jones and Gordon MacRae. Shirley Jones, for you younger sprouts, was the mom on the Partridge Family. MacRae was also in the film version of Oklahoma! (The exclamation point is part of the title, just so you know.)

But can I really have as my favorite musical a story of a wife-abuser who commits suicide in Act II? I think not.

So what about A Chorus Line with its beautiful music and dancing the likes of which had not been seen on Broadway for a long time. Michael Bennett, choreographer, designed a musical with no scenery, no costume changes, and no intermission, that brought Broadway back to life. Shubert Organization Chairman Gerald Schoenfeld said it totally changed the musical theater.

“It was a catalyst for the improvement of this area, and of course this area is now the most desirable area in New York.”

But I can’t make myself pick A Chorus Line for my best musical in the world, even though it gave the all of us this beautiful song, written by Marvin Hamlisch:

So, my favorite musical in the world is, drum roll, please, The Fantasticks. Most already know that this was a small off-Broadway show, that never made it to the Great White Way. The New Yorker, in its monthly rundown of shows playing at the time, along with how the editors felt about them, finally got to the point. After about 15-years of explaining The Fantasticks, they just went with a simple phrase that was something like this “…all that whimsy.”

In the end it had a 42 year run, making it the world’s longest-running musical. But it’s not “Try to Remember” that makes this show the best in my book, nor is it the musical’s obvious connection to audiences. It was performed in the round, so connecting was easy. No, it was this song, written by Tom Jones (not that Tom Jones) and Harvey Schmidt, as was the entire  score:

And although the movie, directed by Michael Ritchie, was a flop, this song, sung by Jean Louisa Kelly and Joey McIntyre in the film, is really beautifully done and worth a watch.

Hope you enjoy the music!

“Real Neat Blog Award” Surprise

Thank you, Petrel41 at Dear Kitty. Some blog. You are what I would call a special, interesting, intriguing, intelligent, encouraging, multi-talented person. And somehow you saw my blog and nominated me, along with ten other bloggers, for the Real Neat Blog Award, for which I am very honored. Run, don’t walk, to the Dear Kitty. Some blog site. This award graphic was created by Petrel41 to represent this award in 2014.

First, I shall answer the seven questions asked by the author and nominator from Dear Kitty. Some blog.

1. Where do most visits to your blog come from?

Well, I’m so new to blogging on WordPress (just a few months), I’m pretty sure that most folks who read my blog are those who got started about the same time I did. I have a feeling the excellent WordPress Team groups us around the times we begin blog, making our fellow bloggers kind of a support group. At any rate, new bloggers are wonderful supporters of one another, and this camaraderie has boosted all of our blogs’ popularity.

2. What is your favourite sport?

It must be soccer, because I love to watch my grandchildren run up and down the field. 🙂

3. What has been a special moment for you so far in 2016?

Back to my grandchildren, every summer I host what we call Camp Gigi – which includes swimming, making, fishing, playing, sliding, painting, storytelling, fireworks, and much more. This last summer, for the first time, several of the kids’ friends came along for the ride.

4. What is your favourite quote?

It may be erroneously credited to Einstein, but I love it still:

“Imagination is more important than knowledge. For knowledge is limited to all we now know and understand, while imagination embraces the entire world, and all there ever will be to know and understand.”

5. What was your favourite class when still at school?

Drama, of course!

6. Anything you had wished to have learned earlier?

I wish that I had learned earlier on that love is an action. I know now that the romantic idea of love is great, but won’t get you through the rough times. It would have been nice to understand that love is an action and taking actions each day is what makes life joyous.

7. What musical instrument have you tried to play?

I played the guitar in high school and college and it helped me make friends and allowed me to bring something to the table, so to speak. Just because I wanted you to know that I clicked on your musical instrument link, may I say I had a friend who played the viola da gamba. I can also tell this about you: if you do not know about this instrument, you will want to hear it. Sounds like this:

Marin Marais (1656-1728) – Sonnerie de Sainte-Geneviève du Mont de Paris “The Bells of St. Genevieve” from La Gamme et Autres Morceaux de Symphonie (1723)

The ‘rules’ of the Real Neat Blog Award are: (feel free not to act upon them if you don’t have time; or don’t accept awards; etc.):

1. Put the award logo on your blog.

2. Answer 7 questions asked by the person who nominated you.

3. Thank the people who nominated you, linking to their blogs.

4. Nominate any number of bloggers you like, linking to their blogs.

5. Let them know you nominated them (by commenting on their blog etc.)

My seven questions are:

1. Where do most visits to your blog come from?

2. What is your favourite sport?

3. What has been a special moment for you so far in 2016?

4. What is your favourite quote?

5. What was your favourite class when still at school?

6. Anything you had wished to have learned earlier?

7. What musical instrument have you tried to play?

My nominees are:

Queen of the Girl Geeks

Kaitlyn, Me, Myself and Everything Else

cookandenjoyrecipes

MissTalkaholic

Eat Sweets and Be Merry

gilliansvoiceonpaper

Songs

I’m sure that you have had a song stuck in your head at some point, or many times in your life. When I was younger and more involved in the musical world, it would happen to me all the time. But now, I rarely have music whirling around in my brain, until two days ago.

Why it was this song I cannot say. It is a song I sang in my high school choir. And it was on a Barbara Streisand album I got one month from the record club I joined. Remember those? But that it just popped into my head and stayed there for so many days is a mystery. I figured that perhaps I should share it since it was so embedded in my consciousness.

The song is “All the Things You Are” and was written by Jerome Kern and Oscar Hammerstein II for the Broadway musical Very Warm for May in 1939. It was recorded by Frank Sinatra, Tommy Dorsey, and several jazz artists including Charlie Parker. Apparently, the chord progression is rather challenging, making it a favorite for jazz musicians.

To be clear, it was not really the song itself that was rolling over and over in my brain, it was the verse, which is rarely included in a performance of the song. To hear the verse, you will have to listen to the beginning of the Streisand recording.

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https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=web&cd=1&cad=rja&uact=8&ved=0ahUKEwjaruetqLbRAhVM6YMKHU_SD18Q3ywIGzAA&url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.youtube.com%2Fwatch%3Fv%3DsrvOsegThJA&usg=AFQjCNEKhmW9hBVH5CVKzoZJa7WD1YuqLg&sig2=uCaynuMSaOw2RBSVZqO35Q&bvm=bv.143423383,d.amc

Time and again I’ve longed for adventure.

Something to make my heart beat the faster.

What did I long for? I never really knew.

Finding your love, I’ve found my adventure.

Touching your hand my heart beats the faster.

All that I want in all of this world is you.

 

Lovely, right? As for the song itself, nobody does it better than the elegant Miss Ella Fitzgerald.

https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=web&cd=1&cad=rja&uact=8&ved=0ahUKEwiLxb6xqrbRAhUkxoMKHZTcC6cQ3ywIHDAA&url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.youtube.com%2Fwatch%3Fv%3DOPapxr8GvGA&usg=AFQjCNHOq77AyDq38Ein6Dh39yRbE8bN8g&sig2=dh3jfLsGs9l2VzrfXTfeyw&bvm=bv.143423383,d.amc

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Absolutely, inarguably fabulous!

Many times in pop music history, the verses of songs have been ignored.

Here’s the introductory verse to White Christmas:

The sun is shining, the grass is green.  The orange and palm trees sway
There’s never been such a day.  In Beverly Hills, LA
But, it’s December the 24th.  And I am longing to be up north.

Don’t you know that somewhere there is a book dedicated to all those introductory verses that just don’t get sung anymore?

You’re going to miss out if you don’t take a few minutes to listen to this song. Maybe it will stop repeating in my head if you do!

 

 

The Wonderful World of Hygge

Like all of you, I am a lover of words. Sometimes I get a kick in the pants by the way a word sounds. Who can resist saying Zimbabwe? Other times a word wins my heart based on its meaning, like the word lagniappe. And then there are words like hygge (pronounced hue-gah).

Who else but the Danish would come up with a word that explains so much about something so minimal, yet all-encompassing? This word has become popular in the US over the past couple of years, probably because so many of us are searching for calmness, coziness, and peace. I knew when I first read about it, I would be eager to find out more about the whole idea.

As everyone already knows, hygge is a word that defines a particular feeling, ambience, or state of being that assists those who live in places where winter evenings can begin at 4:00 o’clock and snow is pretty much continual make it through the dark periods.

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The juicy part is all the things that come together to make hygge happen. Allow me to share some of the ways it is explained:

  • a feeling
  • a mental state
  • coziness
  • well-being
  • candlelight
  • warm food
  • family-time
  • the manner in which people behave towards one another
  • intimacy
  • comradery
  • conviviality
  • contentment
  • gratitude
  • festivity
  • food-making

The idea, the word, the concept draws me in. If you’re thinking about reading a great book in front of a fire while covered in a furry throw and drinking hot chocolate with your dog by your side, then you’ve gotten the point. Maybe hygge does have something to do with the fact that Denmark normally makes it to the top of the “happiest places to live” list. But we all know that happiness rarely comes from outward objects, settings, or food. Still, count me as one who is going to get deep into the hygge movement this year. Want to join in?

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Crossing

Crossing the Jordan River, for Christians, means going to heaven. When the children of Israel fled Egypt in search of the land God had promised them, they first had to cross the Jordan River. In the New Testament, Jesus was baptized by John in the Jordan River. Eventually, Christians began to use the Jordan as a metaphor for the crossing that would lead to the final “promised land,” or heaven.

In the old days, down here in Mississippi, folks would say of someone who had died that he or she had “crossed over,”meaning they had crossed the proverbial Jordan River to be with God. So, for many who were born in these parts, the word “crossing” had a spiritual connotation.

Since we’re talking of “olden times,” I am reminded of many songs that were sung during the folk-song era that had to do with this subject matter, one of which was “We are Crossing the Jordan River.” Joan Baez and Bob Gibson did a duet of it at the 1959 Newport Folk Festival. I found a copy of the song on http://www.ibiblio.org/jimmy/folkden-wp/?p=7555, and copied it thinking some might like to hear it again, or for the first time.

We Are Crossing The Jordan River – Click To Play

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My parents tell me that in the past, many individuals went to churches that baptized members of their congregations in nearby rivers or ponds. I’m betting there are still some small churches that continue this practice today.

No matter your spiritual beliefs, it seems to me that believing that death is simply a transition, a crossing, if you will, to another place, universe (parallel or not), or form is as good a way to think about our endings as any other.