Friday, June 29, 2007

Father's Day is the Real Mother's Day

I was visiting Literary Mama and saw Deesha Philyaw's colum, "The Girl is Mine." Very funny and it reminded me of something I meant to post about way back yonder on Father's Day. (Sorry I was being a particularly bad blogger who was missing in action).

Apparently us Moms have really got this thing figured out. We may have to spend a few hours in the kitchen to make Dad's favorite meal, or come off a chunk of change to purchase the latest gadget or a new putter. Yet, I think we're coming out ahead.

I was running around on Father's Day - picking up an ice cream cake (GQ loves them) and a few other items. My boys were at the local pool. When I dropped them off my husband looked pitiful. As if separating him from his easy chair and television were a crime. There were several other fathers who looked just as tired and hot as my hubby. They were busy chasing their kids around the pool. Only a handful of moms were there.

Everywhere I ventured there were fathers covered in ice cream, chips, and a variety of other stains ushering two, three, or even four kids around restaurants, parks, the movies, and the pool. Again, just a handful of moms to be found. Most of them were with their adult kids.

Suddenly I realized that Father's Day has turned into this awesome freebie day for mothers everywhere. We get to chill back at the house while Dad spends the day with his brood. SWEET! Maybe we should look into making it Father's Weekend instead. If we manage to pull that off, I will definitely meet you at the spa.


Chris Daughtry - It's Not Over

I am insanely excited. GQ Jones just called to tell me that Daughtry will be coming in concert with Nickelback (Yeah!) and Staind (OMG!!!!!). I am completely in love with Daughtry and Staind.

I just hate that groups like that always come to our outdoor amphitheatre out in the Boondocks - Blossom Music Theater. I'm more of an indoor girl. I can deal with the fact that I will probably be one of just ten black people there - I am used to that. I just hate the thought of sitting wet and cold in the mud if we end up with lawn seats.

Think sunshine.

Whose Birthday Is It Anyway?

My mini-record mogul is officially all grown-up. He may be 18, but I still consider him my baby. Even more so because of the challenges that he experiences. It is a fine line that you must walk as a parent of a child with learning differences. Add that to your normal teen-age angst and you've got yourself a doozy.

The challenge that this poses for us as his parents, more than all the others, is striking a careful balance between trying to protect him and teach him and allowing him more freedom. A few years ago I really started to notice that we had fallen into the habit of telling him what to do all of the time. Because of this, he would often just look to us for answers and not even try to think things through. I discovered he was way too reliant on us and it was our own darn fault!

He is doing so much better in this regard now. It is nice to see him maturing. I have learned to celebrate his successes. I am also much better at seeing his challenges through his eyes and helping him to navigate them.

All day long all I've been thinking is that I need to marinate in a vat of Oil of Olay or something now that I am the mother of an 18-year-old. It's Mini-Mogul's B'day, so why do I feel like it just as much a turning point for me?

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Working My Right Brain

I took this test today. No surprises here.

You Are 20% Left Brained, 80% Right Brained

The left side of your brain controls verbal ability, attention to detail, and reasoning.
Left brained people are good at communication and persuading others.
If you're left brained, you are likely good at math and logic.
Your left brain prefers dogs, reading, and quiet.

The right side of your brain is all about creativity and flexibility.
Daring and intuitive, right brained people see the world in their unique way.
If you're right brained, you likely have a talent for creative writing and art.
Your right brain prefers day dreaming, philosophy, and sports.

Thursday, June 7, 2007

The Cleveland Cavaliers are in the NBA Finals - Say What?

How excited am I? A life-long Cleveland Cavaliers fan that will witness my boys in their first-ever appearance in the NBA Finals. One of the things I love about the Cavs most - through good times and bad - is their demeanor. Never arrogant or thug-like. They don't employ bad-boy tactics. They have been accused of being soft in the past. However, now I think we've got a great balance and some fearless players who will never back down, like Anderson Varajao and Sasha Pavlovic.

LeBron James is a great asset to our team, but also to our region. He's earned the respect of basketball fans, and our region because at the age of 22, he handles himself better than a myriad of athletes and artists twice his age and with half his talent. We are impressed by what he has done on the court, but we are even more impressed by his leadership on the team and how he has given back to his community.

Though he has often been criticized for it, I love the fact that he is an unselfish player. As he grows as a player, he continues to learn to negotiate when it is best to take over the game, and when he should get his teammates involved. As the other members of the team continue to grow and step up, this will be even easier for him.

I vowed NEVER to call Daniel Gibson "Boobie" when they announced that was his nickname earlier in the year. However, after his second stunning playoff performance in Game 6 of the Eastern Conference Finals against Detroit, well let's just say that getting a "Shoot Boobie Shoot!" shirt is definitely on my list. :-)

Z has played better than he has in years, Eric Snow is an awesome defender, and Larry Hughes has show a lot of heart, playing despite injuries.

I know that we are in no way favored to win this thing, but nobody thought we'd be able to knock the Detroit Pistons off of their throne either. I believe we can win this. I know you'll think I'm insane, but I'm calling it the Cavs in 6. No matter what happens, we in the City of Cleveland and the surrounding regions are stoked and we are proud of our boys.

Go CAVS!!!!!

Saturday, June 2, 2007

A Few Movie Recommendations...

Okay, lots to talk about. Here are a few of my picks:

Spiderman 3

I loved the movie, particulary the whole good vs. evil within oneself as my beloved Peter Parker struggles with the seducing power of the black Spiderman suit. I also enjoyed the twist on the story with Harry who is blinded by his need for revenge over the death of his father back in the first installation. The storyline between Peter Parker and Mary Jane is quite interesting as well.

My only gripe with an otherwise wonderful movie is that they tried to stuff just a bit too much into one feature film. I thought that the Sandman's story, while compelling, was just too much with everything else that was already going on. His story would have worked better had they saved it for the next film.

Pirates of the Caribbean - At World's End

I love Johnny Depp and I am a huge fan of the Pirates of the Caribbean movies. Hell, I even have the original soundtrack from the first movie. I definitely enjoyed the film. There is all of the usual swashbuckling and Johnny's Depp's insane Keith Richards-esque pirate antics. I never get tired of that. Orlando Bloom was as yummy as ever and they layered just enough clothing on Keira Knightly to keep her from looking like an underfed waif.

I enjoyed the film. However, it did feel a bit long and the plot got a bit convoluted. I usually prefer overly complicated plots that leave my movie mates scratching their heads. This time I was doing a bit of the headscratching and saying, "Huh?" and "Oh..... now I get it." Maybe I was just a bit tired from all of the walking, tennis, and turkey burger eating. Hey, at least Mini-Record Mogul and I stayed awake for the entire movie. Not everyone in our party did. :-)

The Queen

I really enjoyed this film. I am a royal family junkie who still mourns the loss of Diana. However, this film does a wonderful job of following the Queen's struggles in the days following the death of Diana. A very private woman's hand is forced and she must deal with her emotions in a much more public fashion and break with the traditions and protocols that she holds so dearly and has sacrificed her own desires to maintain. I was surprised at how sympathetic her character became once we learned more about her. The interactions between the Queen and brand new prime minister Tony Blair (played by Michael Sheen) are often quite awkward and intense. He is struggling to "modernize" England while Queen Elizabeth II is dead set against this. I liked Helen MrCrory who plays Cherie Blair, Tony's wife. She is no fan of the Queen and her old school ways.

Seeing the circus that is the royal life, and the life of those in politics is a quick and easy cure for anyone who might feel envious of such a lifestyle. Helen Mirren is a wonderful actress. Besides that, I love her style on the red carpet. Way to show the world that mature doesn't mean "old" nor does it have to mean unsexy.


I resisted seeing this movie. It wasn't until all of the Golden Globe and Oscar hype that I started to think, maybe there is something to this. I love the old musicals - Singing in the Rain, My Fair Lady, The Sound of Music (How much do I love that movie!), The Wizard of Oz, The Wiz, Beauty and the Beast (I still know every word to every song in that movie). I would definitely add DreamGirls to my list of favorites.

The story of the Dreams climb from obscurity into the limelight is filled with highs and lows; ambition and greed; love and hate. I guess I was afraid that there would be so much emphasis on the soundtrack and very little concentration on the quality of the story and the individual performances. Jennifer Hudson really is impressive as Effie White, the woman whose dream resulted in the formation of the Dreamettes in the first place. I have to admit, if you force it out of me, that Beyonce Knowles was actually pretty good. She has definitely grown as an actress. I thought that Eddie Murphy, Jamie Foxx and Keith Robinson were outstanding in their roles as the leading men in the film. I'll definitely be adding this one to my collection.

What did you think of these films?

I've Been a Very Bad Blogger

Geez, has it been two weeks? I'm a very bad blogger. However, I've spent the past two weeks very well. I went on a PC Free Diet. I actually closed my office door and forced myself to stay away from my office for a full week. It was great! I actually got out into the great outdoors. I played a little tennis, saw a few movies, did some barbecuing... it was absolutely fabulous. Best of all, despite spending much more time together over the super long weekend, all was well on the homestead. GQ Jones (husband), Mini-Record Mogul (teen-age son) and I all got along quite nicely, thank you.

Ahh... I could go for a grilled turkey burger from Brown Bag Burgers, baked sweet potato fries and another glass of Moscato right now.