Thursday, May 14, 2009

Always take pics of yourself with your kids....

A long time ago I was having my (now oldest girl!) baby girl's picture taken, and the photographer said to me that *I* needed to get in the picture too. I was so embarrassed because of the weight issue - I didn't want to do it. Well, I did get in the picture, and now I'm glad I did. I still don't like myself in the pictures - but I've tried over the years to include myself on occasion, regardless of how I look.

Today I read on another blog how important it is to take pics of yourself with your kids. Over 350 responded to her! Wow! She made some excellent points that I'll try to remember:

1. In five years you will look five years older….you WILL look young in the pictures you take today!

2. Ten years ago I thought I was fat. Oh my goodness….I should have taken pictures THEN.

3. Your children look at you all day long. THEY know what you look like. They won’t care how you look in the picture.

Over the years I've either taken professional pics with them or casual - and believe me, I hated every one of them (love the kids! Hate me in the pics!).

Years ago I took my girls out (my son and husband were at a Boy Scout camp) and we all got our hair done- and I took them to a professional studio and had the pics done. That's the pic I feature here in this post - me with my princesses. My middle daughter still remembers when we were all in the salon getting our hair done - and how special that was. It wasn't for a wedding, or for some "special occasion"...just a girl's day, and a day to make a memory.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Ice, Ice Baby!

Ice cubes. They bring up pleasant images of summertimes spent sipping lemonade, sitting on a porch swing. Who doesn't want a few cubes in their drinks on a warm day? (except the English - which I simply can NOT understand!)

Instead, ice now relates to frozen...and frozen relates to my shoulder. Until February, I'd never heard of a "frozen shoulder". That brings up images of someone buried in an avalanche; or stuck in a walk-in freezer at a fast food restaurant. Reality, hard as it is, is much crueler.

To understand this story, I have to backtrack to Dec. '08. I was reaching under the sofa with my right arm....and stretched out for something. I overextended it, and it hurt. So, I babied it, thinking it would feel better in a few days. Instead, my movement in the right shoulder soon became more restrictive. The pain was awful when I tried to move it - so I didn't.

One night at prayer group my good friend told me to go see the doctor, 'cause I probably had a "frozen shoulder". I went to see the doc and was sent to physical therapy. I figured I wanted to go for the "manipulation under anesthesia" aka M.U. A. approach. They refused that thought, and wanted me to spend at least two months in physical therapy. I wasn't happy with this decision.

After two months of excruciating therapy, I basically was told to get surgery. I prefer to try a different therapy called hydroplasty - my doc said she'd try to find someone to do it if I don't improve more in a few months.

Until then I'll take my HUGE ONE-AND-A-HALF-POUND weight and work that shoulder over and over. Remember kiddies - don't try this at home.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Mad, Mad, MAAAAD World!

I had to do a separate post about this as I think that last week's "Mad World" was the most fabulous performance Adam has done on Idol to date. His tone was so pure and clear - he faltered a few times but the whole song was haunting. The blue lighting made him look other-worldly - almost ethereal.

Many reviewers picked on him because of his last note. Quite a few musical morons said he was sharp. DUH - newsflash everyone, he was NOT sharp. In fact, that note was so far at the top of his range I still can't believe he hit it. It sounded almost if he scooped the note, but I believe he really wanted to hit it square on. If you look at the video you can see how wide his mouth was and how he was supporting the note with his whole body. Problem was for him is that he didn't quite hit it straight on, so he FIXED IT by forcing his palate up just a bit higher...and the note became in tune.

Here's a link to it: it's been pulled from Youtube...but a fan club site has it.

Now, if you're not a singer you haven't a clue as to what I'm saying - but that's ok. Even if you know what the palate is (I'd bet most people don't - if you did a "Jay walking" episode on it!) you probably don't realize what part it plays in singing. Normally, if you're already tense, and you know you blew the note, the LAST thing you'll be able to do is correct it by posture and palate - in fact, you'll probably be so tense it will get WORSE. That made me even more impressed with him - that he could correct the flaw effortlessly.


Rating Adam as I Do Chocolate - now THAT'S Respect!

Ok, actually I'd say tonight's episode was "Meeeh". Yup, I said it. I was NOT happy with the save used (wasted?) on Matt. What if one of the chosen ones gets sent home next week? I'd probably want to reach through my screen and throttle someone. I thought it had to be unanimous? Simon sat there saying he was worse tonight than last night; and pointed out he'd been in the bottom three twice before - it was his time to GO.

My fave is still in the competition though - and I think he'll go all the way. Yup, that's Adam. Last night's performance was not my fave of his, but he got points just for being Adam. It's like this - people ask me if this chocolate or that chocolate is good - and I say, "Hey, it gets at least 4 points out of 10 for just BEING chocolate". That's how I see Adam - he gets points for just showing up and being his fabulous self. I picked him a long time ago, and I think he's going to glamify his way to the top of the heap. He's already leaps and bounds above the others in terms of vocal performance skills and sound; the other cast is just hoping for his crumbs...or second place. As long as Adam doesn't make any blatant statements about his sexuality I think he'll be fine. Most of us (like myself) could care less - but there are quite a few who would try to ruin it for him.

Of course, he doesn't need the Idol crown. I'd just like to see him have it, as he deserves it. He has the drive, the skills and the awesome TALENT to make him number one. He's a different kind of idol for sure - but that's change - change we can believe in!

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Not Surprising at All - Buh-bye Sarver!

Well, tonight Michael Sarver was predictably sent home. I can't believe the judges were actually arguing more over HIM than they did Alexis last week! To give him props - he did sound a thousand times better this week - but still not good enough. Besides, the judges are hoarding their "save" for Danny or Adam! So, buh-bye Michael. Of course, that was the last 4 minutes of the show.

The rest of the show was interesting. Danny was back to his regular look; and all were safe that I thought would be except for Matt! I'm not Matt's biggest fan, but even had him that's really weird for me that he could've been sent home. I think the judges might have rescued him though if that happened.

Smokey sang a song with another chick that was NOT good. I loved his solos, but she was terribly out of tune.

Stevie Wonder appeared at the piano and the hootin' and hollerin' began - mostly from the Idol contestants! Everyone was excited that Stevie was in the house, and he just sounded outstanding. His voice is a jewel.

So, that's it...we're down to 9. Who will go next week? Before they even sing I predict it'll be Matt (unless his fan club gets going). The male vote is split so many ways, and I think Kris and Danny split votes with Matt. Can't wait for Tuesday!

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Another Idol Kind of Day....

Tonight we have another fan-tabulous Idol performance night. Last week I was in Florida and couldn't do a recap (not that anyone reads my recaps anyway!) but I'm back on track. Last week my fave Adam just TORE UP the Ring of Fire. At first listen I didn't like it, but after listening to it a few more times it really grew on me. Amazing sound and range. It's TOTALLY Adam.

The judges "almost" used their save on Alexis, but "Jolene" was awful, and I suppose they're saving it for Danny or Adam. I was bummed that Alexis was booted - she did NOT do a good job on "Jolene", but Michael Sarver does not belong on the tour. Last week he mumbled through Garth Brook's "Ain't Goin' Down ('til the sun comes up)" and was just awful. He had to slow it down to try to fit the words in and it showed that he had to work way too hard. He has so much tension in his singing and his face, which affects his tone tremendously. If he'd relax his jaw he might gain a better tone and enunciate better. Can't believe he gets to go on tour.

This week is "Motown Week". Usually there are some good performances with this theme (unlike Country week!) so I'm looking forward to it.

First up is Matt who sang "Let's Get it On". It was ok - Smokey was kind to him. It sounded a bit generic and as Simon would say, "karaoke". Of course, the judges gush over him. Simon calls him "brilliant" and a "front runner". Ugh. He sang in key - but he's just simply not my fave.

Next up, Kris. Of course, my kids boondoggle my time; I started trying to get their movie up on the LCD tv (from computer) at 6:45...and at 7:20 still having problems! Some Idol night it'd be nice if I could just not be interrupted a gazillion times.

Ok, back to Kris - eh. Or Meh. It sounded good, but it always bothers me that he practically dislocates his jaw several times during his performance. That's so distracting and shows a lot of tension. He really needs to stand in front of a mirror and sing (something we did in music school). It shows you what bad habits you're building up and work to eliminate them. Simon said he needs to stand like a star and "not like he's at a bus stop" LOL.

Blind Scott sang, "You Can't Hurry Love". I liked his performance and how he changed it up. Good job! OMG, Paula is making sense and making musical comments! Uh-oh, Simon didn't like it - "honky tonk piano" & "cheap". He's trying to dig a ditch and kick poor Scott into it. Uh-oh, Randy agrees with him. Kara said he brought "tempo"...I believe she means "up tempo"? Duh.

Best moment so far; Simon kept interrupting Paula and she reached under the desk and whipped out a coloring book and a box of 64 crayons and told him to keep his six year old insults to himself....something like that. Cracked me up!

Megan sings, "For Once in My Life". I hate her green striped top...oh gosh, and I hate her dress and that huge distracting tattoo. She pushes through "me" and lose her breath support again. Very breathy on "true". She's flinging her hips in her little Megan ditsy dance...ewww. There were parts that I liked, but not my fave (I liked her "Put the Records On"). Randy thought it was a train wreck. Kara suggested "My Guy"...oooh, that would've been great for her! Oh gosh, Simon rips her a new one. I almost feel sorry for her!

They've had a commercial in-between EACH performer!! Good thing I can read the news, cut my nails, feed the dog and other various sundry things on these long breaks.

Anoop is up with "Oooh Baby Baby". He started out a bit rough - he's not supporting his breath by sitting hunched over. His falsetto on "baby baby" is too thin and reedy. Then he moves through the mask in his face and the sound is like a different singer - that's it Anoop! He slowed it down a bit too much, but overall it was a good performance. Kara called it a "skill set"...way to go in the engineering talk! ha ha They want him to go back to up tempo - but does he have another one in his pocket like "My Prerogative"? Oh, and could someone wax his eyebrows a bit?

Oh no...Sarver after the break. I need to come up with a nick-name..."Sarver-who-doesn't-belong-in-the-top-ten". Ok, that's way too long...

My hubby came in and tried to talk to me too - I told him I'd talk to him at 9 and he got mad at me. Is it a crime to not want to be interrupted?

We find out he didn't make the trip to Detroit. He sings, "Ain't Too Proud to Beg" Again he tightens up the outside corners of his mouth and his jaw. Smokey tells him he basically needs to sing out - and he doesn't. LOL...Paula calls it "Las Vegas loungy". Simon hated it. Hopefully he'll be gone this week, but I wish we could bring Alexis back in his place!

Next up is Lil Rounds. We just saw her for a moment...I love her flapper dress! So far we've had some very lackluster - and a few ick performances. C'mon us!

Lil sings "Heatwave". This is the first outfit that has flattered her figure. Don't like the hair - but ok, can't have everything! She winds up shouting quite a bit through the song - as if she is singing without a mike and hopes they hear her in the back of the auditorium. Pretty good - and very true to the original. Maybe too copy-cat. Oh gosh, Kara said pretty much what I was thinking. Paula is on something again - oh wait, she said that she didn't change anything in the song, but somehow she "owned" it? Simon called her authentic, but should've picked "Heard it Through the Grapevine".

Oh my gosh - they just showed Adam pre-commercial, and he looked like Zac Effron! LOL...I heard he's going to sit on a stool and sing. Obviously he's not going glam or over-the-top, so this oughta be good. He needs to give a more mainstream performance at this point. Even though I loved last weeks performance, I doubt most of America did.

Uh-oh...we get just the Fox logo! Don't pre-empt my Adam! AAAAAARGH! What's he doing...stripping? LOL I hope they don't cut his performance out.

Oh goody! He's on! I loved Smokey's description of why it's called "Tracks of My Tears" and I think he scared Adam when he noted that Adam sings it softly throughout - Adam seemed to at first think it was a criticism...but then realized it wasn't and was relieved. Adam performs it with an acoustic guitar, a drum and the string bass. It was beautiful, but wasn't my favorite song of Adam's. Still, he was the BEST one of the night. Smokey stood up and gave the thumbs up sign. Kara stood up. Simon disagrees with Kara to say it was THE best performance of the night. Simon mentioned how he took off the black nail polish and "straightened up" ha ha - but I wish he would've taken out those button earrings. He then would've looked more like a straight guy. I liked how Randy said he used "everything in his arsenal". True, how true - he is a real artist. I'm sure he'd never put this on an album, but it shows how talented he is in arranging and performing a totally new version of an age-old favorite. They must be running behind because Ryan just says they have nothing more to say and goes to commercial.

Next up, Hokey-Gokey. I didn't make that one up, but I like it. He sings, "Get Ready". Halfway through this song I think, "Wow...this is a great song choice for him". He screeches through a bit of it, but I actually enjoyed it a bit. Oh no! He makes the background singers do those circles with the hands....NOOOOO! Paula admits they have to move fast. Simon called it clumsy and amateurish. Wow...hard to believe I liked it better than the judges! Huh, better check my temperature.

Last up is Allison - she is going to sing, "Papa Was a Rolling Stone". Of course, I think of David Hernandez (the gay stripper) from last season - he actually did a good job with this. Since Allison is in the pimp spot - I'd bet that she will slay this....after the break, of course.

Even her speaking voice sounds as if she smokes several packs of cigarettes a day. Who dressed her tonight? It's as if someone went into her closet and threw random items out and said, "Wear THIS!". Sometimes as she sings she jumps ahead of the musicians, but overall it was a very good performance (which is why she's last!). Kara lept up and encouraged the audience to clap and scream. She said, "That is from "God". Simon drew a mustache on Paula's face.

So, who will go? I predict it'll be Michael Sarver (but then I thought he should've gone last week). Hopefully he's not the "Scotty the Body" of Season 8.

Monday, March 9, 2009

Throw Your Cash Into the Street Before You Spend It to See "The Watchmen"

This movie is violent. So many people have said that. But you just can't understand the level of violence this movie brings unless you've seen it - or fought in a world war. Seriously. With a big blue looking alien dude (Dr. Manhatten) and his alien-looking penis swaggering around in almost every scene; frankly I'm surprised the director didn't use the blue penis to crush people for added shock value.

This movie was so gosh-awful violent, I nearly puked. I wanted to walk out at about 15 minutes into it, and my husband kindly said we could go to the comedy next door, but he had waited so long for it to come out, I couldn't make him leave. So I decided to tough it out.

We both were sorry we did. If THIS kind of movie violence is what people like - there is something disturbingly wrong with people. I had to cover my eyes for much of the graphic nonsense, which really - the story could've been told without it. I know the graphic novel purists would say "No", but as an outsider it just would've been a better film without having to close my eyes every few minutes.

Unbelievably some idiot brought his children. I'm a mom to four children, and never would bring kids without reading reviews on - but whatever. It's "R" rated - what was he thinking? I hope to God he took them out once the gratuitous, insane violence began - which was at the beginning, so I hope they left as soon as it started. I can't imagine what kind of nightmares my kids would have after seeing that - heck, I may have a few tonight.

AVOID this movie at all costs. Save your money. Or just go out on the street and toss it down a grate. Either choice would be better than sitting through this dreck.

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Tell me Something GOOOOD!

This is the Wildcard Show. Woohoo.

Jesse promises to show off her two note range with "Tell Me Something Good". Nope. Doesn't do it for me. Not much range. Meh. I kept find myself wondering if the front row could see up her skirt it was so short. That's not a good thing for me to be wondering when someone is SINGING. (rolling eyes). Better than "Bette Davis Eyes"? Huh. NOT SAFE.

Matt Giraud "Who's Loving You" by Jackson 5. I've gotta say I'v'e never heard this one before. Not my fave performance. Bluesy-soulful Matt? I dunno - he seems still too white bread. He's no Elliot Yamin. The girls are praising him - I have a feeling Simon will trash him. Hmmm..Simon loved the song, then accused him of bits of "Taylor Hicks". Har har! NOT SAFE.

How many seconds are they allowing them to sing? I'm going to time the next one...

Next are Megan and Von...after the break. I have high hopes for Megan - will she fulfill them?

Couldn't time Megan - 'cause the darn dog wanted to be put out.

Oh gosh, did Megan ever go flat on "me" at the end of the phrase "you're not the one for me". Ugh. She's singing "Black Horse and the Cherry Tree" that Kat McPhee did. Ugh. Last note was awful too. I had such high hopes. Oh dear - Paula talking about "Joy" and picking the right song....but not LIKING it. Simon says he still likes her. "Not the best vocal we're going to here, but so what you're fantastic". I guess they have her on the "GO THROUGH" list. SAFE.

Von - "Sorry Seems to be the Hardest Word". Oh my gosh - he's butchering one of my all-time favorite songs. Where's my pillow to put over my head??? He bleeds out on the vowels like "sad". He makes scary faces when he sings. Ok, overall it wasn't THAT bad. Simon called him boring - uh oh. Gosh, even Randy said he lost his pitch. What doooog?? NOT SAFE.

The song was approx. a minute and 15 seconds. Let's see what the next contestant's legnth is....

Jasmine & Ricky after the break! So far, I think Megan is the only sure-thing to go through. Of course, I think that the judges had it picked before they ever performed, but since they're doing so crappy (well, they only had a DAY) they're making it easy to fail them. Why didn't they give them a week?

Jasmine: "Reflection". Her lower soft notes are not good - but this is a LOT better than the other song she did. A bit screamy at the end before the soft part. Again, Kat McPhee did this too. Randy thought it was too big for her - and that is how I think too. Simon thinks she may be back in the running. MAYBE WILL GO ON

Ricky: I was so disappointed when we lost Ricky before - hopefully he'll do well tonight. Oh gosh - "Superstitious". He's KILLING this song! As Kara said, "He can sing his butt off" and Simon said, "Good chops" but then later criticized him. MAYBE WILL GO ON

OH TATIANA GETTING THE PIMP SPOT? KILL ME NOW. We'll see - but they've had six singers - and I'll bet she'll go last. Oh thank the stars - she does NOT get the pimp spot!

Tatiana: I don't even want to talk about her, but I will. Maybe she'll fall off the stage and cry tonight? I can only hope. Her pre-sing interview sounds like she is high as a kite. She's in love with everyone and everything??? She's pouring on her accent - and "Thank you so much". Oh dear..."Saving All My Love for You". A Whitney song? NOOOOOO! Her last run was NOT good. Oh goody - let's see what the judges say. Paula says she never heard that accent before, then said she imitated what Jorge did. Power voice? WTF? Nah. You're wrong Paula. My cat can sing that better. Simon said, "You sung that three times? Told her it was rubbish that she couldn't clear another song. GOOD FOR YOU SIMON! Tats kept trying to talk over everyone - how rude. Kara said she had a new personality. "At least she's not crying and holding her heart". Simon quipped, "She will". LOL Ryan made a faux-pas about "Don't get up for me"....har har. GOOO HOME BEE-ATCH!

ANOOP has the pimp spot! HOORAY! He's gonna sing "My Perogative". WOOHOO! That wasn't the best - but Simon says we need to put personality through and "Cast" this group. Simon quipped at the end he would've liked to have heard another song. It's so not fair to the kids though - 'cause if they truly didn't know if they were going to be singing today, they didn't have the Idol people to prep their songs for more than a few hours. What does he expect? SAFE

Ok, I think Anoop, Megan & Ricky will go through. Jasmine may trade out for Ricky, who I believe they think is "boring". Results after the break!

WTF??? JASMINE is in? Awww...Ricky didn't show enough personality? That's ridiculous. Megan and Tats are up. Megan is going through! She is crying by the judges stand? Was she trying to plead off of the microphone? Gosh, she's pitiful. Thank goodness they didn't pick her.

One more spot left - crossing fingers for Anoop. Looks like the show will run "over" again. My 'puter clock already shows 8 p.m.

Simon tells Jessie she "nearly did" and she almost jumped out of her skin thinking she would get through for a millisecond. Next Von is given the bad news.

It's down to Matt & Anoop. WHAAAAT? Matt made it through? WTF???? OMG....Simon said, "We make this a top 13." Anoop didn't get it at first - but then it hit him and his look was precious. Poor Anoop - he'd just congratulated Matt - and accepted defeat, then was handed this! I had even thought about it myself this season - but was shocked they actually put it in place.

So there you have it...Jasmine, Megan, Matt and Anoop. I picked two outta three! Good choices.

See you next Tuesday! Gonna go through Idol withdrawal now.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

THIS is American Idol RESULTS!!! Group 3

Oh we are for another American Idol results show - where the results are never fiddled with (uh....yea, RIGHT).

My first thought is - why do they have those stools of discomfort up there? Those are the most awful stools - they're uncomfortable looking and unattractive, and they've used them for years. Is Idol too cheap to get better looking stools? Probably.

I love Lil Rounds - but she needs a stylist FAST. Today she looks so top heavy - that top and tights combo is not flattering.

Next is the group sing - "Hot & Cold" (or whatever). It was ok. I was wondering how they'd work in blind guy - ok, they make everyone SIT. Ugh. Alex looked like a fish out of water and obviously didn't know his lyrics. He knows he's heading home.

Up next - a surprise audition? Oh goody - another past Idol coming back?

Oh threw up on the floor - a brief intermission.

1st chair is given to Lil Rounds - big surprise? Not...but I love this girl. She's got those Bugs Bunny teeth; didn't like her song - but I love her tone.

Next Ryan picks the five people in the front row, and says just one will go through. Since Scott is one of them - I'm guessing it's him. We'll hear AFTER THE BREAK. Argh.

WOOHOO...Scott is through. He seems like the sweetest guy. I don't think he's the best singer though. He drifts off key but has some nice moments. It's nice they let him stand center stage with Ryan - no embarassing "lead over" to the stool of deliverance. Only one stool to go!

They stand up Nate and Kristen next. I say to myself - "They're canon fodder - out they go!". Nate looks dejected before Ryan even tells him - he knows. Of course, I was right - they were NOT through....yeah!

Von & Felicia. Von's hair standing up in a pointy manner looks like Spanky! A "no" for both of them.

Looks like it's either Ju'not or Jorge...just as I predicted. I'd be happier with Jorge. Ju'not is cool too. I hope either would be back in the wildcard show....oh, the suspense is killing me (LOL). They'll find out right now? What Ryan?

JORGE GOES THROUGH! AWESOME! Simon looks totally disgusted and bored.

Now to the wildcards. Ryan says the judges didn't know who would go through tonight - yeah, right. It's so rigged - do you really expect us to believe that? They brought back a BUNCH of people - I didn't count to see if it was everyone from the previous groups, but it looks as if they're all there up in the balcony/dance area.

Von, Jasmine, Ricky, Megan

Next after the break - we get four more.

Tatiana???? OMG.....NOOOOOOO! EWWW...WHAT THE HECK IS THAT DRESS??? People are laughing at her bawling. She thanks the whole world. Ugh (rolling eyes). VFTW must be having a ticker-tape parade.

Matt Giraud! Oh, I know someone who will be happy! He's good - so that's a good choice.

Last minute change - hmmm. Jessie! WOOHOO! I think they picked on her so much when she sang before. Hopefully she'll get a fair shake tomorrow.

OH NO! One left! Who could it be??? Simon says they're likable and talented....ANOOP! YEAH! Love this guy!

Oh man....Ju'not did not get through (pouts). Felicia didn't get through. I wonder if they traded Tats for Felicia? I can't believe she's taken the place of someone who actually DESERVES to be there. I would switch Von for Ju'not in a heartbeat. Ugh. Bad choice judges!

Of course - these 8 aren't guaranteed a seat - there's only three left.

They ran long tonight so they cut Jorge short. Meanies.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Idol Group - Week 3 It's All or Nothing Baaaaby!

WOOHOO! Another fun night on Idol. I have a love/hate with this format of kicking the kids off the show...but oh well.

First we have
Von Smith - "You're All I Need to Get By". Ok, before I comment on his singing, does anyone get scared when Von opens his mouth? His eyebrows go angular and he just looks SCAAARY. It's so distracting. So NOT like Clay! His singing surprised me - if I closed my eyes I liked parts of it. I hope Von doesn't make it through though - I couldn't watch that week to week.

Taylor Vaifanua - "If I Can't Have You". It was SUCH a train wreck! It seemed to me as if she veered off course immediately - she definitely ran ahead of the musicians, probably due to nerves. Her "liberties" with this ABBA song weren't just liberties - she changed the melody so much it was practically unrecognizable. No doubt she has a good voice - but that was awful. Probably will get cut. The judges were harsh - but it was true.

Alex Wagner-Trugman - "I Guess That's Why They Call it the Blues" Oh gosh - where do I start. He was so nervous, and I understand that - but he is definitely out of his league. Too shy and too frankly untalented to continue on. Probably a nice kid though. Very poorly sung.

Arianna Afsar - "The Winner Takes it All". I probably could blame a lot of this particular train wreck on the arrangement, which to a certain point I don't think the singer has much to do with. The song arrangement was awful - then it ended abruptly - probably like her singing career on Idol.

WHAT IS WRONG WITH THESE GUYS/GIRLS? This is the the ONLY chance to go through for most of them - and they're tossing it aside. So far VON is looking good? Oh gosh, we're in trouble.

Ju'not Joyner - "Hey There Delilah". I like this guy. He's a smooth operator. Like him....hope he goes through. He's stuck in the middle - could easily get forgotten and not voted for....gosh, hope not.

Kristen McNamara - "Give Me One Reason". I don't really have a reason to vote for her other than I think she has potential. Didn't like her rendition at all. The judges are praising this girl - I think - because they have heard a load of crap tonight, so she shines like a STAR. Randy was right on target when he said she did too much with it.

Nathaniel Marshall - "I Would Do Anything for Love". Much like Normund, I didn't want this guy to go through. I think he went through for the dramatic element and total gayity he brought - not for his mad singing skills. I would do anything not to listen to him again. Thank goodness the people that get voted off from the show don't get to sing this year (the only thing I like about this format). He's so fake. Can't stand those piercings. Meatloaf? Really? Meatloaf can do Meatloaf - not this poser. Oh my - the pointy finger of death! He's pointing at the audience! Ugh! He was mostly on pitch - but it was still awful. Simon goes first; says it was verging on excruciating. WOOHOO! Simon!

Felicia Barton - "No One" She sounds like a professional. Her voice breaks on the first "no one" and some times she seems to force her sound far too harshly, but she can work on this. Her raspy soulful voice is just awesome. She was very, VERY good and I hope she goes through.

Blind Guy (aka
Scott MacIntyre). "Mandolin Rain" Very good. A bit creepy looking, but very good. Simon said he's growing on him and would be amazed if he doesn't sail through.

We have seen Lil Rounds yet- guess she's due for the pimp spot (as I suspected).

Kendall Beard- "This One's for the Girl's". She's a pretty l'il thing - oh and for what it's worth, I don't want to see her dad do the crocodile or alligator thing again. Really. I want to like her - at points she sings pretty well. Some times she falls REALLY flat. So far she's my favorite girl even with her pitch issues. I don't think those issues will go away - probably not nerves as Randy said. Guess only time will tell!

They announce that Jorge will be next after the break - so I was right - Lil Rounds will be in the pimp spot. This show is so predictable!

Jorge Nunez - "Don't Let the Sun Go Down On Me". Now Clay did this song better (IMHO) than Elton John - so this guy is going to have to be DARN good to make me like him. I have to say he has definitely worked out his language barrier problems - I only noticed a touch of accent in there. Ok, he didn't out-do Clay or Elton, but that was a totally respectable version. Very on pitch and a very good singer. Not sure he'll get through - unless Puerto Rico gets on the phone and votes their fingers off. Oh gosh, he's crying at Kara's comments. He's so cute. Maybe I'm wrong - hopefully he has a big fan club that I don't know about. Still think the blind guy will get more pity votes.

Lil Rounds - She has three, she looks great! I should vote for her just for that (although that dress is not complimentary to her rear view - simply too tight for that kind of figure). Ok, I hated the song. Still, she has some mad skills - and should go through. Simon complained she sounded too much like the original - I didn't know the song, so ....whatever. Fantasia meets Mary J. Blige? I agree.

Who I think should go through (talent-wise): Top Guy - Jorge. Top Girl - Lil Rounds. Second top highest votes - blind guy Scott or possibly Ju'not.

Who I think will go through - Von (huge fan base); Lil Rounds (lots of pre-show pimping and had the pimp spot - and was brilliant to boot) and blind guy Scott.

Hopefully I'm wrong! We'll see tomorrow night!

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Adam Lambert in "The Ten Commandments - the Musical". Just awesome. If you wanna skip to the chase, listen from 3 minutes on. I love this guy - but he needs to watch himself sing in the mirror and not thrust his tongue out. Bad habit; worked for KISS, but not for you!

Results Night!

So who goes through tonight!? Obviously (to me at least) Adam has to go through, but let's see.

Ok, first up is Allison; she got the first chair. I so saw this coming. I'm happy for her.

Second chair went to Kris? OMG.....he must have a rabid fan base. I really thought Matt G. or Megan would get this spot. Hopefully they'll be back for the wild card show.

Now we're wrapping up, and they have "Normund" and Adam you even think that Normund will get the spot? We'll see after the break!

Oh HOOOORAY! Adam is in..buh-bye Normund! (Pleeeease do not bring him back for the wild card!)

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

American Idol: Group 2

Wow...another night of Idol. Will we be wowed? Or sadly disappointed? Will the judges make ANY sense? Let's see how they did.

Who's gonna get the pimp spot? (last spot). I'll bet it's Adam Lambert.

I'm going to do my critiques as they're singing - and before the judges do. Will they agree with me? Let's see.

Jasmine Murray: "Love Song". Ugh. Bad karaoke at it's best. Her lower register was awful and shaky; she finally showed some better singing towards the end, but it's not good enough to get through (IMHO).

Matt Gireaud: "Viva la Vida" Just didn't like it. His Hollywood stuff was so much better. So sad...I think he's canon fodder (especially being in the #2 spot - usually those folks do NOT make it through).

Jeanine Vailes: "This Love" by Maroon 5...She struts out in teeny tiny shorts (isn't it winter?) and starts singing. Oooh, soooo flat on "mind" and "heart". It's painful. Only good thing I can say is she has nice muscle tone in her thighs. As for her singing, nothing too redeemable - but hey, her boots were uber-cool - that should count for something, right?

Nick/Norman: Ok, before he performs I have to say that I could care less about him. When he sings seriously he has a nice voice, but not nice enough for Idol. His "shtick" is so off-putting I never would've put him through to the Top 36! When he auditioned I was sure it was a joke and he was something like 38 years old. He looks alot older than he is (and not in a cool Taylor Hicks kinda way). He is on now: AAARRRGH! He's that freakin' character, singing, "You're Gonna Love Me". I don't love you. He so does not deserve a place in the Top 12. Believe me, I don't have to love you. Is he trying to be the VFTW pick?

Allison Iraheta: "Alone" by Heart. Oh wow, she's 16. I hope she doesn't make it through so I don't have to hear Randy talk about her age all over and over. Her pre-sing interview from Ryan was very uncomfortable and not good at all. We didn't see much of her before, so that usually means she'll not go through. I don't like her antics, but she has a very strong, soulful and cool voice. Oh great, Randy points out she's 16. Am I psychic? I hope the stylists do something with that hair color and "do". Ok, changed my mind - she tore that song up. So far she's the first one I'd download from the night.

Kris Allen: "Man in the Mirror". His first "Ooooh" was so off key - don't these potential idols know not to start AWFUL? He sang the rest pretty well, but I don't really like the song, so that's a strike against him. Did he pick this song out of a hat? I'd love to be behind the scenes, 'cause I don't think they pick such poor songs for themselves! Wow...Simon liked it? Egads. He seems like a nice guy; and I liked the little bit they could show from Hollywood week. Guess we'll just see how bad/good the others do whether he deserves a spot in the Top 12.

We're only halfway through - it seems like forever (and I LIKE Idol!).

Megan Corkrey: "Put Your Records On". She has more tatoos than Carly from Season 7. She has a two year old son? Her tone is interesting, but very nasally. She pushes through her middle ranges and doesn't transition well into her upper range. Shows very poor breath control. Very breathy in areas like "got" and the last "somehooooow!", and weird dipthongs on "down". Weird shimmying of shoulders; awful dress. Still, even though I said all that, I like her.

Ryan announces Matt & Jessie are up after the break. This is draggin on waaay too long. I believe it's due to having four judges who critique stuff for 3 to 4 times the legnth of the actual singing. Adding Kara was a HUGE mistake.

Matt Breitzke: "Tonic". Another hard-working stiff trying to make it in the music world. He's a welder - that's a pretty good paying job! So far he's singing well; but it's kinda boring. I truly appreciate people who sing on pitch - but he has to be a bit more exciting to get through. As Simon might say, "Very forgettable". Oh wow, spot on; Simon said the same things. Of COURSE he's going to say he would've picked the same song again. Good thing he has a good paying job to go back to - 'cause I think he's heading there. Then again they put through that other dude last week that I thought was not very good (who worked in the oil fields?).

Jessie Langseth:"Bette Davis Eyes". She's a decent singer - but she keeps dropping the ends of the words/notes. I'd say a mediocre performance. You've got to BRING IT for this level.

Oh goody; Kai is next.

Ok, interrupted from Idol for REAL life. My daughter needed help with her french horn work. Said she has to learn 8 pages by tomorrow? Something tells me she was behind a long time ago!

Ok, snuck in to the last few minutes....ya, Adam Lambert was in the pimp spot. I'll have to go back and give a listen to the last contestants off my DVR.

I'm back!

Kai: What's Become of the Broken Hearted. This guy has a nice voice and sang mostly in tune - but WHY THIS SONG? He looks so current - yet he sings so old. Bleh.

Mishavonna Henson: "Drops of Jupiter" Personally I hate this song, but whatever. She did a good job with a load of bullhocky of a song. Judges didn't like it - don't know why.

Adam Lambert: Do a youtube search- he's done some wacky, weird uber-glam stuff (look here) but that boy can SING! He so reminds me of Steven Tyler. He got the pimp spot as I knew he would and he BLEW IT OUT OF THE PARK with "Satisfaction". It was amazing.

Ok, I think Adam DEFINATELY makes it through; then either Allison or Megan vie for the top girl and third spot.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

I'm Gonna Rip Your Wings Off!

Ahhh yes, family game night. While others were watching the Oscars, we sat down to a family friendly game of Scrabble tonight. Of course the youngest two girls couldn't play on their own, so Mom & Dad each took one to be on our "Team".

The youngest, Queen of all the Princesses named her team "The Beat-alls" recognizing that she was spoofing the Beetles AND telling us she was going to whip us - all in one name! So, not to be out-done, my teammate says, "Let's be the Butterflies!". Oh the heck do we go up against the "Beat-alls"? The older children wisely chose not to go incognito - they used their real names.

As usual, the game got loud, and Queen Princess got raucous. Finally, she was laughing so loud she could barely spit out - "We're going to rip your wings off Butterflies!".

Nothing like a blood-thirsty baby Scrabble player to add merriment to the day. Butterflies got the last laugh - we got the most points. Guess our wings will survive and we'll live to battle in scrabble another day.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

American Idol Season 8

What would blogging be if I didn't mention I was an AI fan? I've read all kinds of wicked and horrible things about the singers and their fans; I choose to take the funny and leave the rest behind. Most of the people who claim they know it all can't even put a sentence together, are jobless and live with their mother until they're 40 - and certainly haven't earned a degree in music. Since I do have a degree in music - I'm tempted to critique their singing styles and quirks as many others do...but I think that Masterclass Lady does that much better than I could, so I'll leave that up to her.

I've watch Idol since
season one; my hubby dragged me over to watch it against my better judgement on the second show - and I was hooked. I've gone to two different season's concerts; Season 4 (Carrie Underwood won) and Season 7 (David Cook won); they were just a lot of fun. I liked almost everyone in the top 10 last season, and so it was neat to meet them in person and see them perform live. I took my daughter to a concert last summer, and she met David Archuleta - her friends couldn't believe it!

My faves out this section of the Top 36 were Anoop, Danny Gokey, Alexis Grace, and that guy-who-sang-second-and-never-was-seen-before (turns out his name was Rick - I had to look it up). Tatiana sang pretty well but annoys me with her over-the-top hystrionics. Jackie sang actually pretty decently - but I couldn't stand looking at her flopping around like a wounded chicken on the stage. Stage presence is a biggie in my book!

Now the results: Danny Gokey, Alexis and MICHAEL? HE'S going through? Stranger things have happened, of course. Ummm...ok. I liked Michael, but thought his song choice wasn't that good. Thought he might be a wildcard pick, so I'm shocked he's in the top 12. Guess that makes him cannon fodder when we do get down to the top 12. I'd bet he won't be on the tour. But then again - he may surprise me!

I haven't read anywhere a difinitive decision on how the wildcard show will go this time. I liked how they did it in season 2 I believe - each judge got to pick a few for another group of 12 sing off. They even were allowed to pick from people that didn't make it into the top 36. That's where we picked up Clay Aiken.

There are only a few faces in the next group of 12 coming up next week that I even recognize - people who didn't get much face time on the audition or Hollywood weeks. The ones that strike me as the "ones to beat" are Jasmine Murray and Adam Lambert. Only time will tell!

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

"Stone Soup" or "I Always Knew Diet Pepsi Would Kill Me"

Everyone should know the Grimm Brother's case you don't, I'll throw in a refresher here. It's a heartwarming story of how these travelers came to a village with just an empty pot; and since the villagers wouldn't give them food, the travelers decided to put a stone in their pot and insist that this was good soup - they just need "a little garnish" or a bit of this or that to make it perfect. The villagers fell for it, of course, and the travelers made something out of nothing. Ok...maybe it's not so heartwarming - more like a con, but hey, it worked and they were hungry! (and not as violent as some of the other Grimm fables!).

Some of the best learned life lessons are the painful ones - either emotionally or physically. In my case, these stones are turning my insides to soup. Not a pretty picture. Yup, I'm gonna say it, kidney stones. One night last December I thought I was dying, and asked my husband to take me to the ER. Usually I just take some ibuprofen or a pain killer if anything at all if I'm hurting - so it was a big deal for me to ask him (at 1:30 in the morning no less!). A few hours in the ER and they told me I had a small stone (felt like a boulder wrapped in porcupine needles passing through my body!). I'm not sure what kind of stones they are yet (I'm not even going to describe the discovery process!) so I don't know what first went into the pot. What led up to it though was a cruel trifecta of genetics, less exercise and poor drinking (water) habits. In my case I don't meet any of the other risk factors. Only approx. 5% of the population gets these foolish things even if they have the other risk factors.

When I was younger - even up to my teens we were not given soda to drink. It just was a luxury we couldn't afford. It was milk, water or juice. That simple. Once I got to college I learned of the joys of caffiene. My sister had introduced me to TAB (bleh....but don't laugh, I still like it!) which has an awful after taste. Once I discovered Diet Pepsi though, I was hooked.

Even so I still drank milk, juice and the like, but that dwindled as the years went on. Pregnancy made me drink more water, and less caffiene, but it was hard for me. I've read plenty of medical reports and contradicting statements on exactly how MUCH water to drink; and how MUCH sodas should/shouldn't count towards liquid intake. They all seem to agree that at least 4-6 glasses a day; many of them demand more. I think I'll go with the kidney expert from U of P - who published his findings; then reported them on NPR

Bottom line? I'm slowly drinking my way up to better health, one glass of water at a time.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Why 3Princesses1Frog?

Many people have asked over the years that I've sold on ebay why my username was 3Princesses1Frog. I'd had other usernames, but at some point I wanted to change. A few dinner-time discussions ensued, and between the muffled sounds of scarfing down food and the solid burps of my middle daughter, I actually asked my rugrats what they thought about it. I figured that the girls would be fine with being referred to as princesses - but what about my son? How would my oldest - our only boy - the one to carry on the family name feel about it?

My eldest, my pride and joy, turned to look at me and said, "Well mom, I was thinking of 3Beauties1Beast". Wha-wha-WHAT? LOL...guess that boy does have a sense of humor after all. I said, "Well, if you were considering being referenced to as a beast, I suppose a frog is nothing!".

I'm sure I'll use tons of pictures during the course of my blogging, but here's the run-down on my kids. These first three pics were ta
ken at Disney World a few years ago; upon their father's insistence. You know the kind - stick your head through the hole and they snap your picture. In this case, they must've used an early version of photoshop. I thought that $25/picture was outrageous, and he didn't. Turns out he was right - these pics now are so precious to me!

The Frog Prince: He's now 16, but when this was taken he was 12. His main hobbies now are chess - and he long ago surpassed my feeble abilities at trouncing him.

My oldest Princess:
She's now re-living the Terrible Twos - those years are highly over-rated compared to teenage angst years. Her loves are art (manga), cooking and making AMV's. She is also a gifted writer. Perhaps we'll see her in print some day.

My middle princess is quite the Tomboy.
You usually can find her up a tree - the higher the better. She's informed me she wants to play football next 7th grade, instead of being a cheerleader. She may as well play now before the boys get big enough to smush her like a bug! (and she will get interested in them soon enough). She literally just came ramshackling through my den informing me she wanted to build a rocket, promising that she would shoot her eye out before I took one more picture of her...oh wait, she didn't say that, that was just me. She did promise to NOT explode said rocket in my dining room.

Then there's "the baby". When she actually was a baby, and eventually a toddler, I called her "the Queen" quite a bit, because of the instant authority she had in her voice. I just love this picture of her, so decided to use it today. She's already 7, and that's so hard for me to fathom. I would wish that she weren't the baby - that we could have one more, but that's probably not going to happen. My youngest princess is also an aspiring author - she's been writing stories and illustrating them since she was three. I'll probably share some here. I'm hoping this blogging helps me remember and share all those little moments we so often forget, such as my wee princess' penchant as a toddler for being calm up until we got near a McD's, then saying, "Ma...french fry..mmmmm. Ma...Ma....MOMMMMMY! FREEENNNCH FRYYYYYY!" As her speech improved (which is quickly did) she then reprimanded me in stronger terms. "Mommy - you just PASSED the McDonald's".

Yes, I used to be one of those Mommies who withheld sweets/fried food/goodies to their youngins. As the kids rolled on, the ways of the world eased, and by baby #4 things were much more lax. There is something to be said for being the last kid - Mom and Dad are so much less uptight about things! My kids are generally healthy and happy - and that's all that matters.

Friday, February 13, 2009

Friday the 13th...My Lucky Day first blog. The first time my words will be a voice in the wilder-net. Hopefully it will be a funny and/or amusing one. I like to talk about my family, and hope you will enjoy the stories I share from my unique perspective. So many times I've thought about blogging, and now I'm jumping in feet first. What better day than on my lucky day?

Many people claim that Friday the 13th is soooo unlucky. I've always claimed, since I was a young girl (and perhaps some day I'll let you guess my age!) that Friday the 13th was the LUCKIEST day for me. Things always seem to go more smoothly on that day; and I've never had a lick of trouble with it.

Oh, I can see why many people rue the day's approach; after all, things didn't work out too well for those kids in the Friday the 13th movies, did they? I remember the very first job I had - working at the candy counter at a movie theater when I was ...(ummm...mumble mumble....anyway, my age wasn't important to this story!) and the very first Friday the 13th movie played. And played. And played. Back then movies stayed a much longer time in the theater, so night after night I heard the screams and shrieks of the pseudo dead and dying while happily scooping pop corn and selling candy for movie patrons. I was happy to have a job, and even happier not to be witnessing the slaughter of innocents on the big screen!

I suppose some people would consider it a lucky day if I found a coin (or lots of them? Dollars too?) or drew the winning numbers in the lottery (although that would be nice too). These things didn't happen for me, but I'm still blessed and lucky; I have an interesting and loving family;a few close friends, and that is enough. There are no plastic-coated blood sucking/hacking/sawing freaks chasing me so I'd say today is a good day. A lucky day.

A bit about me: first and foremost I'm a teacher at heart.
I taught music for almost 10 years in a variety of situations. Currently I'm a grad student in education and have stayed home raising the kids for many years while hubby goes to work. While at home I sold on ebay. Over the course of my blogging I'll write eclectic articles about successful selling techniques on ebay, my thoughts on education and teaching, my ranting over adverbs and the "ly" that people have dropped from the English language - and insights to the oh-so-crazy life of four great kids, (just to name a few topics that come immediately to mind). I'm privileged to be their mom - and hope to share with you the joys and concerns of everyday life in our house. Tomorrow I'll introduce the kids. I'll probably even include pictures. The older ones will be mortified, the younger ones will think it's neat. I'll chuckle. We'll be together, hopefully laughing. At the end of the day, that's all that matters.