Monday, February 28, 2011

dear nephew

dear oliver matthew cline,

i think that today would be a really great day for you to be born.  maybe talk to priscilla about it and let us know what you think.

i love you,

pretty little products

please check out my guest post on my best friend's wonderful blog, pretty little products.  if you didn't already know, kitty kat kathryn is my go-to woman for decorating, accessorizing, styling, make-up'ing, and general chic'ing.  her beauty and style are effortless and i'm always a fan.  plus she's one-of-a-kind and really funny.  win!

third-wheeling the becks

kitty and her sister, tori, and me.  i love those hayden women.

lil monster kitty putting her paws up at her bachelorette party.  and i'm... not sure.

relaxing in vegas.  twins? 

Sunday, February 27, 2011

holy revelation

y'all, i just realized something.

jim bob duggar is definitely who kenneth parcell would grow up to be if both were real people.

(that family is not real).

Saturday, February 26, 2011

pop-tart scones

as an avid pop-tarts fan my whole life* (strawberry frosted all the way!), i was thrilled to see jenna's recipe for whole grain strawberry pop tart scones yesterday.  so i decided to make it my saturday mission to bake up a batch of these.

well, kittens, mission accomplished because now i have 5 beautiful scones (since we've already downed three) wrapped up and ready for the next time my sweet tooth hits.

i had to adjust the recipe slightly in a few places to accommodate our crazy-fast oven and my lack of ingredients.  also, in typing this up, i just realized that i completely missed her call for 1 cup all purpose flour.  interesante!  next time i'll have to include that to see how differently they turn out, but this batch still tasted great.

whole grain pop-tart scones
makes 8 scones
(adapted from jenna's recipe)

1 cup whole wheat flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup light brown sugar
6 tablespoons cold butter, sliced into small pieces
1/2 cup milk
1/2 cup light cream
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
1 cup chopped fresh strawberries
1/2 cup fresh blueberries

for icing:
1/2 cup powdered sugar
1 tablespoon milk

preheat oven to 400.

mix together vanilla, strawberries, blueberries, milk and cream in a small bowl.  set aside.

in a large bowl, combine the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt.  slowly add in butter and work mixture together with your fingertips until well mixed. (jenna says until it reaches the consistency of sand).

add the berries and milk mixture to the dry ingredients and mix together until a wet dough forms.

pat dough into a large circle on a lined baking sheet and cut into eight pieces (like cutting a pie).  separate the pieces about an inch apart and bake for 16 minutes or until golden.

let scones cool completely while you combine the powdered sugar and milk to make the icing.

drizzle icing over scones and then tell kellogg's to suck it, cause you don't need them no 'mo!

time: 30 minutes

*am i the only one who likes the "crusts" of pop-tarts best?  i love it when they get just a little bit burned (browned, not charred) and they have just a little fruit and frosting on them.  also, i'd like to point out that i'm just as big a fan of toaster strudels as i am of pop-tarts.  just depends on the day.

**i love pop-tarts so much that i went to the pop-tarts world store in times square last november.  annnnd it was awesome.  i had so much fun!

Thursday, February 24, 2011

the job interview

from important things with demetri martin

hayden as amanda is casey

another conversation that just took place in my office:

joe: "so i was watching the lifetime movie about amanda knox, and hayden panettiere as amanda knox looks just like casey. i couldn't watch it all the way through without laughing every now and then."


conversation that just took place in my office:

alex: "how many people do you think there are in the world that carry around 2 tools in a zip-loc bag just for grapefruit?"

me: "well, my brother definitely would."

alex: "other than your own kin?"

me: "... oh, i don't know!"

here's what i do know, though. it's SO WORTH IT! at this very moment, i'm enjoying a juicy, ripe grapefruit and there's NO MESS! y'all just wait. once this whole grapefruit knife thing catches on, there's going to be a revolution. and i'll be on the front lines.

we're laughing

trust me, little diva. we're laughing.

we've got a lot in common. let's grab coffee sometime and then go home and watch mean girls together.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

girl power!

thanks, lindsay, for sharing this.

you go, little lady!

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

crushes all around

"go outside" by cults.

i have a crush on dave franco in this video.  i have a major crush on emma roberts in this video (her hair! the makeup! those clothes!), and i have a crush on this song.

Monday, February 21, 2011

happy birthday amy!

amy kathryn stanley,
today is your big day!
i hope you know i'll be there for you
when you want to play.
play games that is... or pretend.
i'll be there when it's cold outside,

i'll be there when it's hot.

i'll be there when life gets serious.

and always when it's not.

you know i'll be there for you
until the day i crack

and if ever you lose your footing, girl,
i'll carry you on my back.
at least i'll try my best.
cause you're so fun to be around,
you always have a joke.
you always have a character, a song, a dance, or hoax.

yippee aye ay texas!

you're a true class act, you feisty red.
you're the best of the best of the best.
when you can't finish your full meal
you always share the rest.
valentine's day pie / heart attack.
so here's to 25 great years!
i hope you have lots more.
i'd say your life thus far is telling,
and you've got a lot in store!

happy birthday!

it's my birthday, y'all!

Friday, February 18, 2011

whatcha say

i know i'm extremely late with this post, like, a year-and-a-half late,  but this song just came on pandora radio, and i really wanted to address my love/hate relationship with it.

i love imogen heap, and i really love this song.

so when i first heard jay-suuun duh-rulo drop, first, his name (as always), and then some imogen sampling, i was really turned off.  but then my britney spears-loving, i-like-the-beat-but-hate-the-lyrics-of-rap'ing self heard it a few more times, and i couldn't deny that i do like this song.

but yeah, i hate the lyrics.  i really hate them.  jason derulo, let me tell you something.  if you cheat on me, i am not going to give you another chance.  but if i were to ever maybe even consider it, your little lyrics certainly wouldn't help.

Girl, I was caught up in her lust
When I don't really want no one else
So, no, I know I should've treated you better
But me and you were meant to last forever

ew. you were caught up in her lust, so you know, at that moment, it sounds like you did want someone else.  don't blame it on her lust.  own your actions, jd.  accept responsibility.

'Cause when the roof caved in and the truth came out
I just didn't know what to do
But when I become a star we'll be living so large
I'll do anything for you

NO! that doesn't make it better.  i don't really care if you're a star and we're "living so large" if you're sticking it to another lady.  you should be doing anything for me now.  that anything could include, well, anything really... but i'd definitely like it to include remaining faithful. jesus.  this is where i blame the likes of tiger woods, tony parker, etc.  just because you're famous and rich doesn't mean you can cheat on your wives and girlfriends and not pay the consequences.  GROW UP ASSHOLES.

I know what I did wasn't clever
But me and you were meant to be together
So let me in
(Let me in)
Give me another chance
(Another chance)
To really be your man

jason, i don't know that clever is the right adjective to use here.  it certainly works, but... something about it just feels off.  also, please stop telling me that i should forgive you because we're meant to be together.  you should be telling me that you are an asshole and you deserve anything i throw your way, and that you never want to see anyone else's goodies again for the rest of your life, because mine are the best, and if i would just take you back, you'll be a better man and shower me with no, not gifts and living large stuff, but with affection and genuine love.

i'm not going to take you back, but that's what i'd suggest you say.

stay tuned for my response to eminem and rhianna's "love the way you lie."  coming december 2011!

indulgent days

tonight mike + juju caused a mini-breakdown in the elevator, but before that, caroline made me laugh out loud.  really, every time i look at this, i laugh.  i'm even laughing out loud right now as i type this... in my bedroom... by myself.  thanks chumbz.

her accompanying text read: Pic from one of our indulgent days.  Inside Ricky's, licking chocolate off your fingers so we can purchase nail polish.  Idk what I'm gonna do when the day comes that we part.  Probs take you with me.

indulgent days with caroline.  oh man, those are the best.  i'll tell you exactly what happened this day.  we went to our favorite restaurant, westville, for brunch.  we shared their amazing mint lemonade, had great coffee, and i think we split their grilled cheese sandwich and their special frittata (honestly, i don't have a good memory at all... except when it comes to good meals).  for dessert we may or may not have split a piece of their blueberry pie. then we went to get pedicures (maybe even this one):

because we were so tired from such a tough day, we decided to stop by a bakery to get coffee.  that's where we happened to spy a massive chocolate chip cookie that we, of course, split since we'd already indulged in everything else that day.

those, my friends, are the moments that led up to the one captured above at ricky's, where we were no doubt perusing the selection of nail polishes and/or silly bandz (something which we did on numerous occasions last summer).

the reason why this is so LOL-worthy, to us at least, is because of the fervor with which i'm licking the chocolate off my fingers.  i mean, i know there are wars and diseases, and the divorce rate in america is 50%, but GUYS  I HAVE TO GET THIS MELTED CHOCOLATE CHIP OFF MY FINGERS SO THAT I CAN TRY ON ESSIE "MINT CANDY APPLE"!

ps - i just laughed out loud again.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

squashing the cynic in me

remember this? you know, when i basically ripped valentine's day a new one?

well, tonight i checked our mail and was surprised to find a card from my mom and dad.  we're fortunate enough to have an elevator in our building, and while it's not the fastest elevator (we named her eloise because sometimes she's a slow as molasses old lady), it definitely doesn't take that long to go up 6 floors.  it certainly doesn't take long enough to have me walk onto the elevator perfectly happy, composed, and normal, only to then walk off on the 6th floor bawling...

On special days
Valentine's Day
ordinary days, too,
please know
that I see you...
I see the path
you've made
that's all your own.
I see the many
unique talents and gifts
you have to share.
I see your brilliance,
your enthusiasm,
and how deeply you care
and, sometimes, hurt.
I see
your hard-earned
your soft
pure innocence,
your courage
and compassion,
your unconditional
I see what a difference you make
in this world...
... and I hope
you know
how very much
I love you,
and how proud
I'll always be
to have a daughter
as wonderful
as you.
Happy Valentine's Day
with Love

 and then in her handwriting that i could recognize from a mile away, my momma wrote:
Mom + Dad
(Please read. I couldn't have written it any better).

... does it?  apparently it does, because when i opened our front door and amy came flying out of the bathroom to play pretend, she was greeted by me, sobbing, and holding the card out to her.

thanks momma + daddy.  for squashing me in those moments when i start to get cynical, for letting me live my own life, and for loving me and letting me know that you do.  i love you.

now someone cue the taylor swift.

it's here!

the grapefruit knife has arrived.

and just like that, my life is changed forever.


grapefruit cutlery: the aftermath.

with my luck, i'll have my bag searched for the first time on the subway tonight.

"ma'am, what is this?"
"well, since you asked! this here is a grapefruit spoon, and this badass weaponry is also known as a grapefruit double knife.  i've named him clancy*."
"okay crazy."

* my roommates and i like to name inanimate objects. clancy just came to me. i admit it's not a very intimidating name, but he's definitely a silent killer.  can you imagine if 2 robbers tried to attack me on both sides, and i had clancy with me?  jab jab. 2 poke killer.

it gets better - a music video by rebecca drysdale

i'm a little late in sharing this catchy, kind, and well-done video, but better late than never right? that's RIGHT, cline.

ahh, rebecca drysdale. improv crush!

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

more adele.

yes, i love adele. she has breathtaking, heartbreaking, genuine talent.  if you don't like it, just don't read these posts. if you do, you can stick around and get the chills with me.

harry potter!

i can officially shout this from the mountaintops: i'm going to the wizarding world of harry potter!

march 3rd - 7th, amy, lance, stefanie and i are going to orlando to celebrate our 25th birthdays (amy: feb 21st, me: feb 28th, stefanie: march 26th; lance is just going for the butterbeer).

i love harry potter.  i can't stress that enough.  from here on out, i will only be speaking in the voice of luna lovegood (my harry potter clue character).

we're also going to go to either seasons 52 or houston's for a birthday dinner.  thanks pb fingz!

ps - extra points for you if you clicked on every single link in this post.

fifa sleeping

this is a toddler's brain at 5:30pm with no nap earlier.

that's what my brother's email said regarding this photo.

i think what's actually happening here is that sophia suzanne cline is most definitely... a cline.  our motto is i'll sleep when i'm dead yeah, i think i'll take a nap now, thank you.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011


i've seen this ad for the grammys up in the subway lately, and it got me thinking about the truth behind that concept.  if music is life and life is music, then according to my blog, you can consider this my life for the past month-and-a-half.

interesante, interesante.

blind pilot - 3 rounds and a sound

iron & wine - the trapeze swinger

foo fighters - home

smashing pumpkins - perfect

band of horses - no one's gonna love you

madeleine peyroux - you're gonna make me lonesome when you go

adele - rolling in the deep

childish gambino - the last

rivers cuomo - longtime sunshine

incubus - aqueous transmission

coldplay - swallowed in the sea

taylor swift - enchanted

taylor swift - never grow up

and i've added this for extra measure.  adele rocks my soul.  her voice is flawless.

never grow up

yesterday put me into hardcore taylor swift mode.  no explanation needed, but i'm dedicating this post to my niece and nephew, owen and sophia, AND sweet potato fry oliver, who methinks will be an early march baby.

Monday, February 14, 2011

taytay and adam sitting in a tree

well, bring my cold, dead heart back to life!

i have no words, just middle schoolgirl OMG Y'ALL-like excitement over this.

i love me some taytay swift, and i'll bet this will certainly help her get over ole jakey g blue eyes.  she's such a great songwriter and a wonderful role model for young girls.  i wish she'd been around when i was in high school.  i would have been even more OMG OMG Y'ALL than i already am.

weekend recap

this weekend was another great one.  here's a little recap in case you're interested:

- went to see memphis on broadway with caroline and loved it.
- ate homemade coconut chicken fingers (twice!) with caroline (and loved it).
- went to the gym and watched the first episode of veronica mars
- watched the tar heels take down clemson. again. (sorry i'm not sorry, clemson friends!)
- had a great improv practice
- caught up with an old friend who came by to visit
- made mint chocolate chip brownies with amy and caroline
- played harry potter clue with our next door neighbors
- had a 5 hour dance party with our next door neighbors.  for real.  highlights include my hallway slide (below), a few jumping forward rolls down the hallway, when i opened another bottle of wine without a wine tool and wine sprayed all over my face and shirt*, and when the strobe light came out and we imitated this video.
- went to a great 1st improv 401 class at the upright citizen's brigade.  great teacher and great class chemistry.
- had a great improv show

today my neck and body are extremely sore, i have a big knot on my knee and wood-floor burns on my foot, i'm in a bit of a sugar coma, and i'm tired.  well worth it though.  tonight caroline and i are getting manicures and going to get dinner and hot chocolate with lindsay.  hope y'all had a great weekend and are having a great monday!

*this marks the second time i've gotten wine in my eyes.  i've never been a graceful girl.

happy valentine's day!

i love coldplay.  i could write an entire post about how much i love them, but i won't do that.  instead, because it's valentine's day, i'll just post this song because of the following lyrics that always, always speak to me when i hear it (you can fast forward to the 2:43 mark if you want):

oh what good is it to live with nothing left to give
forget but not forgive, not loving all you see

those are words i stand by.  yes, that's cheesy, but if you don't feel a little tug at your heart when you read and/or hear that part, then listen harder because good ole' chris martin is talking to you, pal.

and also, just for shits and giggles, watch this.  it's perfect.  just for today pretend that "christmas" is really "valentine's day."

happy valentine's day!  to all the people i love: i love you!

ps - this february 14th, santa valentine says to give love, not STDs.  

Friday, February 11, 2011


little does amy know that before she shark attacked me, i spider monkey attacked her.

so far, in the little pretend-land that is apartment 6b, we've:

- shark attacked
- brown recluse attacked
- tear gas attacked
- granddaddy long legs attacked
- robot attacked
- spider monkey attacked
- malaria attacked
- mosquito attacked
- anthrax attacked
- killer whale attacked
- polio attacked

so yes, to answer your question, we are a bunch of weirdos.

an email from caroline


after school and picking up broadway tickets, i decided to take a cab home. because it's cold. and i just felt like it.  it was the best decision i've made today, and probably in a while.  it was the best cab ride i've ever had, and the best $15 i've ever spent. i think i had an angel for a cabbie.  a very wise angel.

when i got in the cab, i remarked that it is a beautiful day, but it's deceiving because it's cold.  then, my cabbie asked about my studies at nyu.  we talked about the 24 hour stomach flu that's going around and a little bit about teaching. then, for some reason, he told me all about his niece that he obviously adores and respects, but it all came together in the end.  he talked about how she fell in love and got married after finishing her bachelor's, but wasn't satisfied with her education, so she continued until she got her phd.  in the meantime, she had 4 kids with her husband (2 of which are twins).  she is now in her 40's, teaches teachers at columbia, and is still happily with her husband.

cabbie talked about reasons to get married. he said i shouldn't marry a man simply because i'm in love and/or the sex is good.  what if we have kids, then fall out of love?  he said that marriage is more than that.  that i should be very selective and marry a man who gives me unconditional love and support.  he said to look at his relationship with his family.  do they get along? do they have unconditional love for each other?  if that is absent, it will be absent in our relationship too.  however he feels about and treats his family is how he will feel about and treat me and our family.

is he responsible?  is he smart? these are necessities for a committed relationship and happy life with one another.  before marriage, i must analyze his responsibility in his own life and finances.    we must be able to support ourselves and a family.  what do i want out of life?  he should want similar things.

PEOPLE DON'T CHANGE.  i can never expect or hope to change someone or expect/hope that they will change.  it simply won't happen, and i would be foolish for thinking so and end up unhappy and exhausted from all of the fruitless work i'd put into trying to change someone.  once again, look at him and his family.  this is how he will be for the rest of his life, and what he'll bring into our family.

then, cabbie wrapped this back around and said to always think about #1: ME.  i have to be able to take care of myself.  i can only depend on one person - me.  and i have to be able to do so.  (he commented that i'm doing a good job so far by getting my masters, and that i seem to know what i want out of life so far, especially with my career.) (he also connected this back to his niece and how she attained her phd and was taking care of herself and thinking about the future) interpersonal relationships are good and necessary for support, but once they aren't supportive or bring me down, cut them off.  don't put too much time into other people's problems, or it will inevitably bring me down in the end.  therefore, i must surround myself with good people.

he kept saying how life goes by so fast and how important it is to choose the right path.  it's easy to screw up and choose the wrong one, so don't take decisions too lightly because this is my life and i only have one.  it's necessary to be academically smart and street smart too.


i can't think of anything else right now.  just a note that this advice/wisdom (as i'm calling it) was completely unprovoked.  i did mention that i have a boyfriend, but that's it.  he wanted to tell me all of this.   it was awesome.  oh, and he seemed to be in his 60's and he had a wedding ring on.  


we're going through changes

if you happen to stop by here and things don't look quite right, it's because i'm making some changes to my blog.

please bear with me. i can get my nerd on for sho!, but not when it comes to computer stuff. what is the internet?! are you on the facepage? please be my friend and write on my notewall!

dear ipod shuffle

how did you get inside of my brain?!

incubus "aqueous transmission"

Thursday, February 10, 2011

whenever i think about grapefruit, i think of mother lib.

several things always stand out to me when i think back to when i was younger and my family and i would visit my grandparents in boone, north carolina. one specifically is the way my grandmother, mother lib, always made breakfast for us. she and my grandfather, daddy jim, were the early-to-rise types (my mom, brother, and me on the other hand, are not).

i would always wake up and walk down their hallway to the kitchen, where no doubt, daddy jim was sitting in his usual chair closest to the stove, reading the newspaper or a magazine, eating his breakfast. mother lib would have already eaten her breakfast and would be starting on mine. i remember always being so excited because she was so enthusiastic about breakfasts, and would act like i'd made the best possible decision no matter what i chose. scrambled eggs, sunny-side-up (which was really exciting because i didn't know how to make them on my own), sausage links, sausage patties, peanut butter toast, or her special concoction she called "bananas, sugar, and cream tra-la," (which is exactly what it sounds like: bananas in milk, with a pinch of sugar sprinkled on top). no matter what i chose, she made me feel like i was the best breakfast-decision maker in the world. and always on the side, she'd give my brother and me an orange or grapefruit.

now, try as i might, i just did not like grapefruit when i was little. they were too sour for me, so i always stuck to the oranges. every now and then, though, i would ask her for one, because i really wanted to like them, if for no other reason than because my brother loved them and because they came from her. but the thing was, mother lib didn't just hand us a grapefruit and leave us to our own devices. she took her time with them: she would halve them, use a grapefruit knife to cut the fruit away from the skin, then section them, and serve with a grapefruit spoon. she took care of all the fuss, so we could enjoy all the tart frills.

now before i flash forward to the present, let me just add that my brother and i always love to talk about the fact that every single christmas, we would arrive at their house in boone and take stock of the fruit in the kitchen. because without fail, when christmas morning came, included in our stockings would be several pieces of fruit: oranges, apples, and grapefruit. which we would then turn around and enjoy for christmas breakfast. who did santa think he was, stealing from the homes he gifted?!

cut to: present day. at some point in the last 15-20 years, i stared liking grapefruit, and sometime around this past christmas, i had a craving for one. well, that craving still hasn't gone away, and i've been enjoying 3-4 grapefruits a week since. the funny thing is, this past weekend while i was in maine, i was hanging out with my sister-in-law priscilla when my brother came in and announced he was going to have his nightly bedtime snack. priscilla asked him if he was going to have his usual 3 grapefruits. 3! sure enough, he halves them, cuts them out, sections them, and eats them with a grapefruit spoon. but what he does is puts each grapefruit half in a bowl, so he ends up carrying a tray with 6 bowls of grapefruit. i really should have taken a photo, but i'm a dingbat. apologies.

anyway, my brother asked me if i remembered mother lib's grapefruit, and how perfect they were. i think what must have happened is that sometime around christmas, we both thought back on our grapefruit memories with mother lib and each got a hankering. so strange. matthew is well equipped with a special sectioning knife (that has double blades which cut on each side of the seams) and grapefruit spoon, and commented that i need to get one of my own. so i did. last night on it's my valentine's gift to myself, because i have a lot of sentimental love for grapefruits.

so, mother lib, thank you for my valentine's gift, and thank you for the grapefruit.

Tuesday, February 08, 2011

barf city

guess who threw up 5 times last night and is home from work today.
guess who dry heaved for the first time last night (terrrrrrrrrrrrrible).
guess who's watching forgetting sarah marshall (again).
guess who loves jason segel.


Monday, February 07, 2011

thank you ipod shuffle

for playing this song this morning when i was feeling melancholy about leaving maine. somehow it just fit.

"longtime sunshine" - rivers cuomo

what i did this weekend

- watched the episode of the bachelor when emily tells brad about her tragic past. now first of all, i don't watch the bachelor, but this episode made me wish i'd started this season from episode one, in sweatpants with a box of chocolates all for myself. addddicting. it also reminded me that i don't have it so bad. jesus, those scenes ripped my heart out.
- watched forgetting sarah marshall
- cooked/helped cook: shrimp scampi, bacon-wrapped asparagus, buffalo chicken dip, creamy white chicken chili, mozzarella-stuffed meatballs
- helped scarf down baked chocolate custard with butterscotch whipped cream (OH MY GOD), cinnamon rolls, bacon, sunny-side-up eggs, mexicav dip, and homemade caramel apple pecan bread.
- played with owen and sophia
- played in the knee-deep snow with owen, sophia, matthew and priscilla
- went to the hospital where my brother works and saw his "office"
- took owen to rite-aid and turned it into an in-store adventure
- had several races outside rite-aid with owen while strangers stared at us
- had a very insightful conversation with owen that has convinced me that he's the most perceptive 6-year old in the world.
- only took one shower because i figured i should at least look presentable in case we ran into any of my brother's coworkers.

this weekend = perfection

mooneys part deux

these photos remind me of how much i love these two, and how much i'm truly looking forward to their big day.

Friday, February 04, 2011


that pretty lady right there is miss meagan kathleen drake, or as i like to call her, "muffy." i don't remember where that nickname comes from, but it's not vulgar, so get your mind out of the gutter. she's joining the ANC (alliterative name club) next april 21st, when she marries my best friend from mrs. knapp's english class junior year of high school, dustin mooney, or as i like to call him, "distun." (i'm such a buddy, doling out all my nicknames).

anyway, i walked by the kleinfeld bridal store a few days ago and their awesomely decorated windows reminded me of the future mooneys. here are the original windows, and next week, i'll post my photoshopped versions.

until then, i'm out the door to hop a plane to maine to visit my favorite people in the world, and to slide down some stairs in a makeshift onesie.

she's just being kat von d

y'all, destiny hope cyrus smiley cyrus miley cyrus got her 5th tattoo. she's 18! that's ahelluvalotta ink! i wonder what lesley thinks.

happy birthday priscilla!

happy birthday to my sister-in-law, priscilla!

priscilla, if it weren't for you i:

- wouldn't have tried out for cheerleading in middle school
- would still have bushy eyebrows and really bad hair
- and on that note, would have figured out what a hair straightener was far too late in life
- wouldn't be as skilled at driving a stick shift as i am (yes i can drive a stick shift, everyone. do you think i'm cooler now?)
- wouldn't have been as good of a gymnast back in my gymnastics days
- would have a super neurotic, OCD brother (thanks for balancing him out)
- would never have known what the melting pot was. that'd be a real bummer.
- wouldn't have someone in the family to cook with
- would be a far less confident and ambitious person
- obviously wouldn't have any sophia, owen or bun-in-oven oliver to obsess over
- wouldn't be going to maine for this weekend!

i love you and hope you have a great day. see you in a few hours!

look at what priscilla made! what an artist.

Wednesday, February 02, 2011

tom hanks is a lot of animals

oh man. people and their ideas. people and their dumb, brilliant ideas: tom hanks is a lot of animals.

hallelujah, punxsutawney!

happy groundhog day, everyone! everyone's favorite groundhog, punxsutawney phil apparently didn't see his shadow (might it be because the sun isn't shining? JUST KIDDING! it's because he's smart and knows what he's doing), so that means spring is near. if it were up to me, i'd disagree with him, but p-phil is in cahoots with god and mother nature, so i'll just have to trust. that crazy trio, they're always up to no good.

anyway, i'll be celebrating at the ucb with a special groundhog day improv show. hopefully you've got big plans, too. i mean, isn't this everyone's favorite holiday?

(happy birthday uncle stanley!)

Tuesday, February 01, 2011

5 things i wish were real

1. harry potter and all things related. sometimes i wish i was just a muggle-born wizard whose acceptance letter to hogwarts is still on its way.
2. mr. tumnus
3. the zack morris "time out"
4. my "imaginary friend" from childhood. i use that term loosely because i didn't really hang out with him. he would just run alongside any car that i was a passenger in. he had the great talent of being able to jump over any driveway, sidewalk, road, or other concrete surface. poor guy didn't even have a name. just a purpose.
5. this game.

mike cline's then playing

i have my daddy to thank for instilling in me my vast knowledge of pop culture/love of and - more importantly - appreciation for tv + film/sense of humor/writing chops (momma, too!)/and loads more (including bad skin circa 1997 - forever (thank you acne meds!)). several years ago he took on a HUGE project that has been on his mind since he was my age. check it out (i am such a proud, proud baby tree frog):

I have often joked with friends that I'm going to stop procrastinating...tomorrow.

And to quote one of the world's great philosophers, "Never put off till tomorrow what you should have done yesterday." Actually the sage who said that was Froggy, in an Our Gang comedy.

All humor aside, something I meant to do for many years but didn't until fairly recently is the subject of what I write today.

Born into and reared in the movie theatre business, I developed a great love for the movies. More than any other member of my family, as we changed directions when I was almost ten and went into other business ventures. No one in the family ever looked back - - except me.

About as fast as the state of North Carolina would give me a work permit, I was employed by the two indoor theatres in Statesville doing everything from selling tickets, tearing tickets, popping corn, selling concessions and, finally, learning to operate the projectors and "running the show." Laws demanded I be paid to perform these tasks, but I would have been the projectionist for free. I might have even paid my boss to let me do it.

During this era, I thought back to our drive-ins and wondered if any financial records such as box office reports or booking sheets (the list of movies which were shown) had been saved. When I was around twenty, I asked my Aunt Ruth if they still existed and she told me that "she had kept them in our warehouse until about a year ago," but when she sold the property, she had a crew haul everything to the dump.

Procrastination. I should have asked sooner. Maybe it all could have been salvaged. But looking back now, I realize that I was dealing with bigger personal issues during the 1960's, such as the deaths of some family members, school, and that wonderful thing called "puberty," aka, the land of pimples and hormones.

The interest in our drive-ins returned to me while I was in my mid-twenties. I yearned to, at least, have a list of all the movies we played at my family's theatres. I realized that the only way to obtain such a list would be to compile one myself, and that would take a lot of time, something I didn't have during that period.

So I procrastinated again, but this time with little choice. Working for a living and trying to be a good husband could really eat up the clock. And before we knew it, my wife and I had two children to bring up, and the movie list was something I didn't think about for another thirty years. But that was OK. Priorities, you know.

Before I knew it, I was in my mid-fifties and the kids had left the nest. I was winding down my business, so the luxury of time was becoming a reality. "Time to make that list," I told myself.

So over the course of a year, I made numerous jaunts to the old home town of Statesville and utilized the Iredell Public Library reference room, grinding though the old newspapers from 1947 to 1960. Time-consuming, yes, but well-worth the effort. I finally compiled what I had wanted for thirty-five years.

Then a thought hit me (that does occur occasionally). Even though I wasn't born in Salisbury and didn't grow up here, I decided it would be fun doing the Salisbury / Rowan County theatres as well. After all, I had lived the majority of my life here and came to live here because of the movies. I had been sent to Salisbury at the outset of my theatre manager career. As it turned out, I left the movie theatre business because I chose to continue living in Salisbury rather than take transfers to both Burlington and Winston-Salem. I wasn't a "team player," they said. Maybe not, certainly not to the extent I was willing to re-locate to towns I didn't want to go. No regrets.

So just as I had become a regular at the Iredell library, I was now one at the Rowan Public Library. My original plan was to compile the movie listings from 1930-1979. That's half a century. Should take me a year, tops, averaging three library trips per week.


In all my years as a Rowan taxpayer, no one ever told me that, back in the "old days," there were movie theatres everywhere across the county. I soon discovered that the hamlets of Spencer, Rockwell, China Grove and Landis had their own theatres throughout the Thirties, Forties and into the Fifties, when the advancement of television (I'm assuming) took its toll on many of them. The big box in people's living rooms with no admission shut down thousands of small-town movie houses during the Fifties. Only the theatre in Rockwell survived as late as 1960.

The library trips going through every issue of sixty years of the Salisbury Post ended up taking much longer that I thought. I considered having my mail delivered to the History Room I was there so much. I tip my hat to the wonderful ladies in that department for their putting up with me. "I'm out of paper." "I need more dimes, please." They heard it from me every visit. But they were always nice.

Before I knew it, three years passed before I had securred the info I desired. But it was done. Feeling a bit depressed that the research phase was over, I decided to add the 1920s. After all, the movie industry had blossomed during this time, advancing from silent pictures to speaking to its audiences.

So, now what to do with all of this information.

When I say this all became bigger than I first imagined, I can tell you that stacking it all in one pile, the material reaches 34 inches towards the ceiling (I just measured it).

Publishing was my first thought. But after researching the possibility online, such an undertaking wasn't practical. Too much information. The finished book would collapse any coffee table, and the purchase price would be prohibitive. The boys who founded Facebook probably couldn't afford it.

Then I contemplated doing it in volumes, perhaps two decades at a time. Now I was really glad I had added the Twenties. Still, it wasn't feeling right to me.

On one of my final visits to the library, I encountered Dr. Gary Freeze, well-known local history guru. We often ran into one another up on the third floor. Gary probably DOES get his mail there. He suggested I consider building a website to present the three years of work.

Sounded like a good idea to me. When finished, everything would be right there together and accessible to anyone at no cost.

So with the help of my best buddy, who also acts as my tech-support genie (I would mention his name, but he might not want it publicly known that he knows me), the website is up and running.

Here's the shameless plug. "" is the web address. Let me clarify something at this point. I had decided early on that whatever avenue I took to getting this information to the public, that I wanted to call it Then Playing. I just liked the sound of it. But when it came time to secure a domain name for the website, was taken! I was crushed. A friend suggested I stick my name on the front and try again. Not surprising, this name was available. He said, "Look, you did all the research and you're going to do the website, so stick your *&%$ name on it."

So, with very little arm-twisting, I did. But please don't think of me as a ego-maniac. It's the movie info that's important.

I'd like to say that it will take a considerable bit of time before the website is totally complete. There's so much material to load, but I'm working on it almost daily. I have quite a bit up since starting in January. And after I do get all the material on the site, I plan to continue to make it even more complete. I should point there are some gaps in listings from some theatres (they didn't always use the Salisbury Post to get their message to the public - shame on them). I'll try to fill in those gaps by other measures.

For now, I hope you'll visit the website and enjoy it. Want to know what movie was playing on a birthday, a wedding or graduation day? Want to pin down the day you remember seeing a specfic movie as a youngster? This is the place.

I'll see ya at the movies.

my birthday wish list

i'm turning 25 this year. i think 10 years ago my friends and i wrote down where we thought we'd be in 10 years' time, and mine probably looked a little somethin' something like this:

- i'm married to erik (my bf at the time. high school casey definitely wanted to marry him, but now i'll take any old john krasinski. meaning john krasinski).
- i have a kid or two.
- i'm an actress.
- i live in new york city.

so, i'm 1/4 of the way there! and now i don't think/know if i want kids so maybe i'm just 1/3 of the way there (assuming i can just substitute writer for actress). progress my peoples, major progress!

anyyyyway (please say this in an ellen-voice), here's my birthday wish list. you have 27 days; set your internal clocks.

1. a ticket to austin city limits / money to buy myself a ticket.
2. a kindle.

now, i've been anti-kindle for quite some time now. i love books. i love paperback books. i like carrying them, i like the way they smell, and i like the progress of turning pages. also, sometimes i use my gum-wrapper as a book mark, and if that's not 'green', i don't know what is.

anyway, first amy's boyfriend lance got a kindle. then amy got a kindle for christmas. and THEN, laura lafalce (my old brooklyn neighbor) got a kindle and SHE is a hardcore bookie. they all rave about it. they all love it. and they all say the same thing: you can still buy books. just only buy the books that you want in your family library (because i like to dream big, i'm pretending that my forever home will have a library), and save the rest for your kindle. plus, i can't lie when i say that i've been toting around 300 lbs. harry potter: prizoner of azcaban and NOT reading it because it's heavy and as soon as i take it out in the subway, the actual train comes and then i'm forced to smush up against a stranger or hold a pole, and i can't do that and read at the same time. also, i want to read at the gym, and surprisingly NOT watch extra or inside edition, and the kindle would really come in handy there.

so anyway, i'm falling for the kindle and i'm okay with it. the only thing i'm concerned about most can be explained best by this tweet from andy daly: "great. my book ran out of batteries. stupid future."

dear france

dear france,

bonjour! you're my blog's #2 most loyal country. thank you for visiting us.

i'd really love to come visit you one day and eat lots of good food (and drink good wine), listen to your people speak, and visit some old friends.

anyway, how do we know each other? did we study abroad together? do we work together? who are you!?

regardless, je t'aime, et je voudrais pouvoir parler français.

jusqu'à ce que nous rencontrons,

ps - i hope google translate didn't embarrass me!

childish gambino

do y'all know who donald glover is? you should. he currently plays troy barnes on nbc's "community," is well known for his sketch group derrick comedy, used to write for "30 rock," does stand-up, and, oh yeah, he's also a really good rapper under the name childish gambino. ohhhhh, and let me also add that he's 27, and that fact alone makes me want to go to the top of a roof and wave an "i haven't accomplished enough" flag before i do a running swan dive (just kidding. not that suicide is a joke because it's not the answer, and it's also not in the cards for me. i'd be worried about tons of groups hating on me for that comment, but no one reads this blog soooo i'm safe for now, suckers!).

anyway, i suggest you download his album "culdesac" for FREEzies. it's really good, and this is one of my favorite songs off the album. wanna know my favorite part of this song? of course you do, so i'll bestow you with this lyrical gift:

"and this next part, sounds like nonsense
but i swear to god, tina fey gave me confidence
taught me everything that is good comes from honesty
everybody's got a voice, you just gotta follow it
she on a role model shit
from the day that i shook her hand
i knew that i'd never die a broke man..."

i can't say this now, but one day i'll walk up to donald glover and rap that part to him, then stand still, wait for his response, and then when things have really reached the peak of awkwardness, i'll say, "me too, donald. ME TOO!"

what can i say? i'm a girl with big dreams.