Wordless Wednesday

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Oz: The Great and Powerful Movie Review

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

So, I was beyond thrilled about this movie.  The Wizard of Oz was probably my favorite movie as a kid.  I remember watching it about a million times.  I was really excited when my husband discovered the SyFy mini-series based on a modernized Oz called Tin Man.  We, of course, purchased it on DVD.

You should not be surprised that I totally forgot about the movie by the time it rolled into theaters.  However, when looking at movies to go watch this weekend, there was no second thoughts on my end: I wanted to see this movie.

If you, at this point, have no idea what I'm talking about...here's a trailer.

 I will sincerely try not to make this all spoiler filled, but I'm making no promises (just in case).

Anyway, we watched this movie in 3D.  I'm, honestly, don't understand all the 3D hype.  90% of the time, I could have done without the 3D and not have missed a thing.  I guess I just don't care about all those extras.  However, this time I was pretty impressed; and right at the beginning, no less.  Right away, the 3D blows me away in a snowing scene where the snow seems to be literally falling in your lap.  Mind you, we sat second or third row back, so I don't know what it looked like from the back of the theater, but we thought is was pretty darn amazing.

My husband claims it's the best 3D movie he's ever seen; much more worth it than many others we've seen.  If he says it, it must be true, because if there's one thing he knows...it's movies.  I call him my little movie guru.   Oh how I loathe the electronics section at Wal-Mart.  He manages to trap me in the store for much longer than I wish to be there if I let him have a look at the $5 movie piles.

So, in short, we were impressed with the 3D and think it's worth the extra.

The movie focuses on an ambitious, selfish, egotistical man who seems to have an knack for making women fall in love with him and then disposing of them after he's met his own agenda on the circus stage.  Much like Dorothy, he is whipped away by a tornado, only he's escaping the beating of a lifetime from Mr. Strongman in a hot air balloon.

Whisked away to Oz, Oscar Diggs (AKA Oz), finds himself being proclaimed the long awaited Wizard, prophesied to save the land of Oz.    My husband and I enjoyed guessing who was who.  We were almost right, thanks to his "director's intuition" and my having watching too many movies with him.  Plus, it is slightly predictable.

My husband's only complaint was the frequent monotonous voices used by the actors, although I'm sure it was intentional.  He didn't think it was...right.  I'm not sure how to explain it, but I don't think it affected our overall enjoyment of the movie.  In fact, we were both glad to have seen it.

I would reccomend it to anyway who needs a movie to watch this weekend and especially for those The Wizard of Oz fans.  Enjoy!

PS:  My favorite character is the little porcelain girl.  She's very sweet and sassy and quite funny!    
Witch Poster from Screen Crush.
Other image from The Daily Free Press.
I was not compensated in any way, shape, or form for this movie.  I paid for it out of pocket and watched it because I wanted to.  This is my opinion, without any nudging from outside sources.  Thanks!

Favorite Finds Fridays: Baby Girl Names

Friday, March 15, 2013

So, this is something new I've been wanting to start.
Favorite Finds Fridays
You don't have to favor all the things I do.  Heck, you can hate all these things I tell you are awesome.  That's okay.  However, I'm still going to share with you the things I think are pretty neat.  Someone, somewhere may appreciate it.

Anyway, this week I've been noticing girl names that I adore.  This is probably because I have two sons and haven't been able to flex my creative girl name juices.  Naming a child is a huge responsibility; and something I don't think some parents take seriously enough.  For me, I like modern and trendy while still being sophisticated and classic.  Also, I aim for unique without being overcomplicated.  Therefore, my children will not be named after food and they will not need to be in middle school before they can properly write/spell/say their own name.  Come on, people! 

Can you at least consider how hard it is for a four year-old to spell Allyvia versus Olivia or Alyxsis versus Alexis.  These poor children who are just learning the already messed up and contradictory rules of the English language are given even more difficulty because there parents can't just sound it out and spell it how it sounds.   Anyway, end of rant time.  Now it's time to see the pretty names I like (this week, at least).
  1. Lily
  2. Nella
  3. Rory
  4. Alayna or Elena
  5. Estella
  6. Gemma
  7. Sophia
Image originally from Killian Stock.

Wordless Wednesday 03/07/13

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

PicMonkey and Why My Pictures Rock

Monday, March 11, 2013

Okay, I know what you're thinking:  humble, much?  Well, maybe, just maybe, my pictures do not rock, but I'm pretty satisfied with them.  And while I do have Photoshop and a decent camera, I'm just going to be honest and admit that I'm seriously lazy when it comes to photo editing.  I, also, kind of hate editing personal photos on Photoshop.  I don't mind so much when creating random snazzy graphic displays for no real purpose whatsoever, but I just don't like doing it with my own photos.

Okay, so maybe I'm just lazy.

Anyway, I wanted to share an awesome free resource that I frequently (okay, pretty much always) use to edit my photos.  It's fast, simple, and you can become a premium member if you really want a bunch of extra perks.

PicMonkey is a free photo editing website and you can also create collages.  I remember I used to use some other website long ago that then merged with Google or something, but I can't remember the name right now.  Anyway, they don't exist anymore so who cares?

I am in no way affiliated with, sponsored by, etc. PicMonkey.com or its associates.

Fast Mini Pizzas

Friday, March 8, 2013


When creating my Letter P Lesson Plan, I really wanted to make pizza with the kids.  However, I wanted something a little simpler, personal, and relatively quick.  I discovered similar recipes online whole searching for personal pizzas.  We created a class sign up sheet and put it on the door to the classroom.  The response was amazing and I think most of our 13 kids brought in something; whether it was pizza sauce or cheese or toppings.

Each child was allowed to make their own personalized pizza, which was later cooked and served to them.  All the kids were very excited to eat the pizza they made.  The response was so good at school, and I liked the pizzas myself, so I decided to try it at home too.

I do think the pizzas are a little sweet, but I'm not sure if its the sauce I'm buying or the sandwich thins.  The pizzas were a hit at home too.  Gabriel was only interested in helping with one or two and then he left the rest for Talon and I. To be honest, Talon did all the work on the second batch.  Now he's asks me almost every day if there's something he can do to help with supper.  It's too cute!


  • 8oz Shredded Cheese
  • 1 package Pepperoni
  • 1 package Sandwich Thins
  • 1 jar Pizza Sauce


  1. Preheat over to 375 degrees.
  2. Use 1/2 a sandwich thin and add pizza sauce, cheese, pepperoni and any other desired toppings.
  3. Repeat step 2 for all sandwich thin halves.
  4. Bake for approximately 10 minutes or until desire crispiness.


Each bag makes 16 mini pizzas. You may choose not to use 1/2, but use the whole sandwich thin for a thicker crust. This makes 8 per bag, and serves approximately 2 people.

Find this recipe and more on my ZipList.

Cereal & Other Box Upcycling: Organizing Canned Goods

I'm sharing this organization tip/craft, even though I'm still not sure if this arrangement will continue long-term for me.  When I first discovered this idea and pinned it to my DIY House Cleaning & Organization Pinboard, I was super excited to try it.

At the time, I was fortunate enough (I suppose you could say) to have purchased several 12 packs of pop that week.  As the boxes emptied, I saved them.  Finally I three emptied out and I was ready to start organizing my canned vegetables.  First I tried the method that is most commonly shown around Pintrest, and that is to cut a little square in the back to insert cans in.

 Personally, I did not like this method.  I ended up cutting off the entire top of the box (it's better explained by the pictures).  Then front where you will have opened the pop case might need to be reinforced with tape, as these cans place a little more burden on the box than cans of soda.

My boxes are side-by-side in a bottom cabinet because it was the only one deep enough to fit the pop cases.  This is my biggest pet peeve about the whole thing.  However, I'm not ready to go rearranging my kitchen after I already did so a few weeks ago.  The pros of this method of organizing/storing your canned goods range from optimizing space to knowing at-a-glance what needs blights from the grocery store.  You might even want to prettify your box with duct tape, scrapbook paper, fabric, or wrapping paper.

What are smoother ways to organize canned goods or other places in the kitchen? Have you tried this method/project?  What did you think of it?  Thanks for reading.

Wordless Wednesday

Stove Grate Cleaning With Ammonia

Monday, March 4, 2013

This may have been one of my happiest discoveries while creating my DIY House Cleaning & Organization Pinboard over on Pintrest.  I'm, in no way, the inventor of this cleaning idea/tip, but I will advocate for it.  It truly saves you the headache of scrubbing, mostly unsuccessfully, to clean your stove burners/grates.  I also cleaned those things underneath the grate, though I have no idea what they're called.  The process is simple.
  1. Pour some ammonia in a Ziploc bag or other sealable container/bag.
  2. Place grates/burners in bag and zip up.  For people with single burners/grates, unlike my double ones, you can usually fit on per large Ziploc bag.
  3. Let sit overnight or so on your front porch or in your garage.  I opted for the front porch because of the fumes.
  4. The fumes from the ammonia will make it so that getting all that grime off your stove grates is much easier.
I, as you can see, have double grates.  I double bagged my grates in a trash bag, but it's not as air tight as the Ziploc bag I used for the other part of the stove.  Therefore, I've determined that you'll have better results with an air tight container or bag.  I'm still very satisfied with the results, but I'll probably have to do my grates one or two more times so they're squeaky clean.

Have you tried this?  Do you have anything to add?  What are your favorite cleaning discoveries?  Or Pintrest discoveries?
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