Friday, January 27, 2012

Favorite Things Friday: Comedies

Frank and I love movies.  Not necessarily going to the theater (which we haven't done in almost a year) but watching movies at home... mostly our own that we watch over and over.  We don't have a huge collection.  A hundred or so probably.  But half of them belong to the children.  Ezra has 5 Wiggles DVD's alone.

We have a few favorites that we quote regularly.  They never seem to get old.

purchase it here

I first watched this movie after Frank had already seen it.  I remember looking over at him and he had a smile plastered on, and I thought, "He seriously thinks this is funny?"  But I kept watching.  I felt like I was getting stupider by the second.  It was anti-climactic and dumb.  I do admit I laughed a few times.  Frank told me to give it a day.  So I did.  The next day I cracked up at work a half dozen times thinking about it.  And that was that.  I wanted to watch it again... and this time I was the one with the stupid grin on my face.

purchase it here

This one has mixed reviews from other people, but Frank and I both loved it.  Quirky characters and a fairly believable story really made this movie work.  Vince Vaughn, Jason Bateman, Vincent D'Onofrio and Jon Favreau all played great characters.  The family dinner party was the best and most awkward scene in the movie.  There's a certain phrase Frank and I recite to each other from that part every time we hear the song it goes along with.  It's not a fairy tale, and perhaps that's why people didn't love it.  But those people must be dumb.

purchase it here

Jason Segal cracks me up.  He's a grossly underrated actor.  He has a great poker face and can play awkward situations well.  We also both love Mila Kunis and Kristen Bell.  And Russell Brand plays a really flighty pop star and does it flawlessly.  It's crude, for sure.  But funny.  When we're in the mood for something sort of "mindless" we pop this one in.

purchase it here

Another movie with Vince Vaughn.  I admit... I have a crush.  While a VERY crude movie, Wedding Crashers is also really funny.  It wouldn't win any awards.  It's not a cinematic masterpiece.  But it's funny and the jokes are well written.  Plus, Bradley Cooper makes an appearance, so that's helpful, too.

purchase it here

If you haven't seen The Hangover stop reading this and go out and buy it right now.  Don't rent it and waste the $3... because you'll wish you would have put that $3 toward buying it.  Everyone talks about how wonderful it is, and that's because it is wonderful.  The premise is cliche, for sure.  But the way they have it play out is brilliant.  Trust me.

What are your favorite movies?


Tuesday, January 24, 2012


Ezra:  "Watch Barbie, please, Mama?"

Me: "Barbie?  Really?"

Ezra: "Please, Mama.  Watch Barbie!"

Me: "Okay..."

** Ezra points at the TV screen **

Ezra: "This Barbie."

Me:  "Oh.  You mean Barney."

Ezra: "Yay!  Barbie!"

Friday, January 20, 2012

Favorite Things Friday: Ezra's Favorite Toys

This week Ezra is featuring his favorite toys.  Some that aren't loud and obnoxious and are (sorta) educational.

In First Place  The current favorite is his kitchen.  He loves it.  I meant to give him one for his second birthday but couldn't find the night stands I planned to use to make this one:

Isn't it cute?  I wanted to make him one just like this, but after months (literally) of looking on Craigslist and at thrift stores and garage sales I couldn't find any unwanted furniture that would work.  I was really disappointed.  But one afternoon while trolling Craigslist I came across this one:

I snatched it up.  It was $42.  Yes, $42.  Not sure why she wanted that amount, but whatever.  She probably thought someone would offer her $40, but I didn't care.  Let her have the extra $2 and buy herself a pack of gum.  I spray painted the handles of the fridge, oven, and cabinet, and the knobs for the stove black.  The sink and faucet got a coat of silver.  Unfortunately, I couldn't get the X shaped burners off.  They're pretty tightly attached.  Once it gets nice out I'll tape them off and give them a shot of spray paint, too.  He's over the moon about this kitchen, constantly cooking us things.  Yesterday Frank got a sandwich made of lettuce and a top of a hamburger bun and I got one slice of bacon and 2 fries.  That kid knows what Mama likes.

First Runner Up  His Toy Story pals.  These guys were a gift from Grandma and Grandpa.  Ever since he saw the movie several months ago, his favorite thing is Woody.  
He now has 4 plastic Woody toys in various sizes.  And usually at least 2 of them end up sleeping with him at night.  He also has a plush Woody that used to be Lenon's.  I'm glad he prefers Woody to Buzz. I've always had a preference for Woody, too.

Second Runner Up  Mega Bloks.  

He loves these things, but sometimes I think he likes them just for the noise they make when they pour out of the bags.  His favorite thing is to stack up the single blocks into a tower that is taller than him and then knock it over.  We play with these blocks all the time.  It was the one thing he asked Santa for this year.  They wrote a letter to Santa at daycare and then drew a picture of what they wanted.  I really wanted to keep it, because he made a bunch of shapes in the bottom of the picture that were supposed to be blocks.  But in the transport to our home the letter got ripped in half and stepped on with a wet shoe.  :(  Oh well, there's always next year.

These are his current favorites, aside from Greg, of course.  

What are your kids' favorite toys?


Friday, January 13, 2012

Favorite Things Friday: Hair Products

My hair and I have a love/hate relationship.  It's either cooperating and looks smashing, or it just plain pisses me off.  If you ask Frank, I've probably spent $1000 on hair products.  I try almost EVERY curly hair product I can find, hoping it's "the one" and I've thrown away SO many bottles of product that have been used 2-3 times before I've decided it's not "the one."

Let me introduce you to the few that have made the cut...

This is my favorite gel type curly hair product so far.  It's a creamy gel - more gel-like (totally not a word) than conditioner but not clear and sticky like gel.  I got it at Regis after I got my hair cut once.  But you can find it here for about $12.  I only use like a marble sized blob of it and my hair doesn't get all crackly and crunchy like it does with some other gels.

This is the best hairspray I've ever known.  TRESemme Tres Two.  She and I are BFF's.  I've used this kind exclusively for about 5 years.  I even have a baby can of it at work for extra static-y days.  Once again, no crunch and because it's aerosol it doesn't get those dumb bubbles like the pump ones.  And it's only like $3.99.

When I want straight hair I use these: Rusk Str8 and Regis Designline Get It Pressed (which I think can only be bought in salons).  I use a dime size blob of the Str8 for my whole head.  I made the mistake when I first got it to use a quarter size blob and ended up getting back in the shower to wash it out.  It definitely tames frizz and helps make it easier to straighten.  The Get It Pressed spray I mist over my whole head.  It acts as a detangler and flat iron spray and smells lovely.

Then I straighten with a little Remington flat iron I got at Target for $13 like 5 years ago on clearance.

I've also started experimenting with dry shampoo.  But I haven't found one that I love.  If I shampoo every day my ends get really brittle and dry so I'm an every-other-day shampooer.  (Go ahead and groan and call me a dirtball if you must.)  So sometimes the 2nd day I just need a little boost.  I've tried the TRESemme one and then blasted my hair with a hair dryer and that seems to work okay, but I don't love it.

So that about does it.  Those are the winners in my bathroom cabinet (along side about 6 rejects that I haven't thrown away yet).

What are your favorite hair products?


Monday, January 9, 2012

Thrifty Finds - #1

I have an unabashed love for thrift stores.  Goodwill, St. Vincent de Paul, Salvation Army... I'm not particular.  I love them all.  I love them so much, it's sort of become a joke.  Whenever I'm given an opportunity to do anything sans children I end up at a thrift store.  They're just too hard to maneuver with a cart and a child in it.  I've decided to start documenting my finds because some of them are gems.

These jammies are a 4T and will be perfect for Ezra next summer.  They have the Mr. Men guy Mr. Strong on them.  I've been a huge fan of the Mr. Men and Little Miss characters since I was little.  They were only $1.50.  The shoes are both almost brand new.  They must have come from the same person because both pairs are sized in European sizes.

Both pairs have hardly been worn.  There is almost not scuffing on the bottoms.  It's amazing.  The left pair is Pediped brand -- which I had never heard of.  But I did a little research online and found a similar pair for $49.  These were $2.00.  No joke.  The pair on the right are Umi  - also a brand I had never heard of.  A similar pair are $73.  Once again, these were $2.00.

These gems I found for Ezra's play kitchen that he got for Christmas.  The mini-muffin tin was $0.50 and is in great shape.  It's about 9 inches on the long side and 5 inches on the short side so it's the perfect size for his oven.  The silver bowl is about 4 inches across and he loves to stir things in it using his plastic whisk.  It was $1.00.  The cups are Tupperware cups that are in perfect shape.  They are used to serve us "juice" or "coffee" or if he's feeling generous, he lets us have "milk" out of them.  He's very protective of his milk... it's his favorite.  Each cup was $0.15.  I found a similar set of cups on Etsy for $15 for 4 cups.

Total spent: $7.60

I think that's a win.


Friday, January 6, 2012

Favorite Things Friday: In my makeup bag

I decided to start my own weekly feature.  Favorite Things Friday.  I can go on and on (and on) about my favorite products so I thought I'd start doing it weekly.  Maybe that will get me more into blogging.

I decided to start with my makeup bag.  I've seen a few other bloggers do this and loved it.  I like seeing what other people use and their honest opinions about make up and hair products.

My make up bag is a cute little zipper pouch I got at a Thirty-One party.  I hadn't ever heard of them either, until I was invited to one.  They ran a special where if you ordered $31 in items they would let you pick a little zipper bag for $2.  So, amen.  I was on board.

I don't do any sort of foundation or powders.  I haven't found one that matches my skin tone well enough that didn't get cakey or feel oily.  There's now a Bare Escentuals store in our mall, so I'm thinking about trying it.

The first product I use is eye shadow.  I have 2 favorites... Clinique Color Surge Eye Shadow Duo in Plum Potion and Almay Intense I color eyeshadow in Trio for Greens.  I use a brush to apply the lighter shades and the sponge thing to apply the dark color.  I love this brush that Erica got me for my last birthday.

I then apply eyeliner.  I loved this eyeliner so much that I took that cute little nub that I had left from the last time to the store with me because I couldn't remember what brand it was.  It was so short and worn I couldn't read anything on it.  Sad little guy.  Luckily I found it.  It's another Almay product made for green eyes...  Almay Intense I Color Kohl Liner in Rich Mocha for green eyes  And I love the little smudge thing on the end.

Next is mascara.  Mascara and I have a love/hate relationship.  I buy TONS of mascara and I'm disappointed in the results 90% of the time.  I've probably spent hundreds of dollars on mascaras that I didn't end up liking.  Well, that is NO MORE!  I got an email from Sephora where I could "spin" a wheel for a free product --- but I had to spend $25 to get it.  Whatever.  So I got a couple nail polishes and an eyeshadow that ended up being the EXACT color of my eyelids... what a disappointment.  Anyway, I got this wonderful mascara as my prize... Buxom lash mascara.  I'm picky about mascara.  I usually hate plastic brushes.  I prefer actual bristles.  And I don't like when it's really wet.  I tend to blink sorta hard and if it isn't completely dry I end up looking like Twiggy with eye lashes painted on my face.  So I ended up getting this mascara and love it.  I always get the "blackest" black I can get and this kind didn't disappoint.  It has a plastic brush but it isn't tapered to the end which I like.  It can really get in there and be somebody with my short little lashes.  And then when my mom was visiting over Thanksgiving I noticed that she uses the same kind.  Great minds, Mom.  :)

The eye lash curler is also from Sephora.  I love it.  I had a Revlon one that was fine but it would sometimes pinch my eyelids and dang, does that hurt.  So out with it.

That pretty much does it.  I do have a little concealer wand thing that I use on occasion -- used to use it more often when Ezra was sleeping less and I had bags under my eyes.  But sometimes still need a little "pick-me-up".  It's Maybelline Instant Age Rewind Double Face Perfector and it's been discontinued.  Which is a little sad because when I use it, I like it.  But I guess I could still get ones on Amazon.  (Another reason why I LOVE Amazon...)

- Kara