The 2017 Best Picture Movie Marathon

This year I bought a pass to attend a movie marathon with Regal Cinemas to see all the Best Picture nominees. Thus far I’ve seen 4 of the 9 nominees, with plans to see at least two more. The other three were either movies I had no interest in, or the show times just didn’t fit with my scheduler.
I talked a few women from my neighborhood book club into doing it with me, and we have all really enjoyed it. CootieGirl has also enjoyed it, as I got her a festival pass as well.

The first movie we saw was "La La Land," which I thoroughly enjoyed due to my love of old musicals. I also adore Emma Stone and would watch her read … continue on, dear reader!

Doctor Who, You Say? I’ll Say!

Back in 2013, before Peter Capaldi was announced as the 12th doctor, I took a stab and making my own potential picks for the role of the Doctor. Capaldi ended up doing a great job, but recently announced that he is leaving the role after the 2017 season.

So the hunt begins for a new Doctor. I stand by much of my original list, but I’ll make some minor changes now that we are four years on.

First, I’ll remove Joseph Morgan from my list. I also need to remove Charles Dance since he’s on “Game of Thrones,” unless the elder Lannister gets killed off in order to allow him to take on the role of the Doctor. I would still leave Ben Barnes … continue on, dear reader!

My Books of 2016 List

I posted the books I read on another site and completely forgot to post them over here for posterity!!

Without further ado, here is the 2016 list (which does not reflect the various AWFUL free Kindle books I downloaded that ended up being complete and utter nonsense that should never have been self-published in the first place and for shame on those “authors” for thinking people wanted to read their poorly conceived creative writing project):

1. As You Wish by Cary Elwes
2. The Martian by Andy Weir
3. Last Light by Terri Blackstock
4. The Green Ember by S.D. Smith
5. The Silkworm by Robert Galbraith
6. Me Before You by Jojo Moyes
7. 13 Hours: The Inside Account of What Really Happened in continue on, dear reader!

With a Lot of Hard Work, Dobby Became An Awesome Dog

When we adopted Dobby the Dog two years ago, we realized quickly that he does not like strangers coming in the house. This was a good thing from a home protection point of view, but not so good when we were having guests come over to hang out. We’d have to put him in another room and wait for everyone to arrive so he wouldn’t charge the door and growl/bark at our guests. Once everyone arrived we’d take him out and he’d be fine because he was only aggressive with people actually coming in the door, not those who were already inside. Wacky dog.

Two weekends ago we had people over for our neighborhood’s dinner club. I opted not to put Dobby in a separate … continue on, dear reader!

The 2016 White Elephant Menu

For the past several years I’ve been posting our menu for the annual White Elephant party that we host at Christmastime. I didn’t post a recipe list in 2016, but here is the 2016 blog post! This year most of the things we served we brand new, with only a few repeats.

Each year we do two kinds of meatballs. This year we made two Asian inspired recipes. We had an “orange chicken” meatball – meaning it had the flavors that orange chicken from a Chinese restaurant would have, but made with meatballs instead of chicken. We also had Spicy Korean-style Gochujang meatballs – which were a huge hit. That crockpot was empty by the end of the night. I had made those meatballs two … continue on, dear reader!

An Overdue, and Sad Post

Chilly the Dog
In October I didn’t get a chance to post about this, but we had to put down one of our dogs, Chilly. He was a sweet, senior Australian Shepherd that we adopted just three short years ago. I knew the minute I saw Chilly’s picture on the rescue group’s website that I had to have him. We had adopted him as an older dog in 2013 and gave him to the kids as a Christmas present. Initially told he was about five years old, within a year we knew he was very much older – probably 9-10 years old, maybe even older. In 2015 he began aging rapidly – eyes turning milky, difficulty taking the stairs. But he was just as sweet … continue on, dear reader!

It’s That Time of Year Again

It’s officially December, which means I have permission to go nuts on Christmas stuff. The outside of the house is already decorated – Denis and I spent most of Thanksgiving weekend putting everything up, including some new things that I made this year. We had a lot of issues of things being broken when we brought it out of storage. Most of our net lights were broken, one of my metal trees wouldn’t turn on, and we had a few strings of lights that were done for. Oh, and for some reason three of our pre-lit wreaths that we put in the windows didn’t light up. Very strange. Unfortunately, we didn’t discover they were not lighting up until AFTER we had installed them on the … continue on, dear reader!

Day 10. And 11. And 12, Really.

On Day 10 of our trip, which was a Thursday, we had another leisurely morning since there wasn’t anything left to visit or do. As such, AJ and I slept in until 7 a.m. again, went down to the beach again, walked along the boardwalk again, chilled out in the room for a while, and then had some lunch at an outdoor cafe. At 2:45 p.m. we arrived back in the hotel lobby where we met up with our bus, which was to take us to the airport in Eilat for a flight to Tel Aviv.

At the airport it took our entire group almost 2 hours to get through security and then another 30-45 minutes for our flight to be ready for boarding. Then … continue on, dear reader!

Day 9: Finally a Vacation Day!

Because of the over-active trip to Petra the day before, AJ and I opted to have a relaxing day on Day 9, rather than heading to Egypt to go to Mount Sinai.

Sleeping is was glorious. We both woke up on our own around 6 a.m., but then fell back asleep for another hour or so. We then got up for the day and eventually made our way down to get some breakfast. We discovered we were not the only ones who opted not to go to Mount Sinai, as we saw a few folks from our group in the dining room as well.

After breakfast we headed outside to go touch the Red Sea (upon doing this, I informed AJ that we had touched … continue on, dear reader!

Day 8: The Big Day – Our Visit to Petra

I don’t think I’ve mentioned this, but this trip was not for the weak. Every day we had to be down in the dining room by 6:30 a.m. in order to be on the bus no later than 7:30-7:45 a.m. to begin our day of touring. And then we’d be on the go all day and wouldn’t get back to the hotel until 4:30-5 p.m. It was non-stop every day.

So imagine our horror during dinner the evening before, when Ezer stood up and said, “For Petra we need to be on the bus by 7:10.”

Ugh. Seriously?

Yes, seriously.

The Jordanian border in Aqaba was only a few minutes from our hotel in Eilat, but we were told that the border crossing would take … continue on, dear reader!

Day 7: The Day Jaynee Finally Wore Shorts

Day 7 was a great day. I got to wear shorts! Woo!

No, but seriously, it was a great day, for real.

It was Monday, and we were a week into our trip. After packing our bags in preparation for changing hotels again, we had breakfast that morning with the very first people we met while at the airport in D.C. the week prior, before hopping on the bus to head to Masada and the Dead Sea. That sounds like a light itinerary – but let me assure you – it was not. Masada is NO JOKE. And we spent a lot of time on the bus as we drove from Jerusalem to our final destination in Eilat, on the far southern end of Israel.… continue on, dear reader!

Day 6: I Hate My White Pants Now

So the morning of Day 6 I woke up praying that my white pants were dry (I had washed them in the sink the night before – my second time washing them in the sink with shower gel during the first week of the trip). They were, so I put them on, along with a peasant blouse, thinking that I’d be appropriately dressed to go to the Temple Mount.

Lon had told us that we would go to Temple Mount, but that there was no guarantee the leaders in charge would open it up to visitors – sometimes they do, sometimes they don’t. Fortunately, we were told they WERE opening it up to tourists, so we quickly began making our way through security. At some … continue on, dear reader!

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