March 30, 2013

my (current) favorite things, march 2013 edition

It's been a very long time since I've done a "favorite things" post ... though I do have two that I started to write last year and never posted! Here are some things I've been enjoying lately:
  • French press coffee. Last week, I finally bought a French press. I'd been wanting one for a while, but I just never got around to buying one. What took me so long? French press coffee is awesome! Plus, I can make however much (or little) I want. I ended up getting the Primula Classic Glass 8-Cup Coffee Press, and I'm glad I got it when I did—the price has jumped $7 since I ordered it!
  • My cats. I've been pretty silent about them on the blog lately, but they're still here, and I still love them! I'm not sure if Isis will ever forgive me for taking away her chance to be a mother, but the changes in Hammond and Skaara since I got them fixed have more than made up for whatever hatred Isis shoots my way! Also, Sam is still around—she's the stray who showed up last fall looking like she was at death's door. She's fully recovered and is now definitely one of the crew ... though I wouldn't find myself heartbroken if she disappeared! (Hammond is another story. When I lose him, my heart will break.)
See those eyes? They are definitely not saying, "I love you, Becky!"
  • Pushing Daisies. Several years ago, my cousin Beth told me I should watch Pushing Daisies because I'd really like it. I didn't really want to join a show mid-season, so I just filed away her recommendation. Then the show got canceled, and I forgot about it. A few days ago, I was looking for something to watch before bed. Netflix didn't have anything that called to me, so I checked out Amazon Prime Instant Video. And there it was: Pushing Daisies. I watched the first episode and was entranced. (I blogged about the episode here.) Pushing Daisies is whimsical, funny, and beautifully filmed. If you have Prime, you should definitely check it out
  • Chicken pizza. I recently "invented" the most divine (and simple) chicken pizza. It can be made in 20 minutes, start to finish. It tastes wonderful, and it's actually pretty healthy! Look for the recipe on the blog soon.
  • Smashbox Photo Finish Foundation Primer. My sister Val introduced me to this primer when we visited for Thanksgiving. It is absolutely wonderful! I bought my own just before Christmas, and I'm still on the first bottle ... so even though it costs $36, it lasts a long time! (I only use it on days I wear foundation. On other days, I use Avon's MagiX Face Perfector. At $10 a bottle, it's a bit more economical!)
  • Lizzie Bennet diaries. I first heard about this YouTube series on Annie Downs' blog. It's fantastic! Check out the first episode below, and then I'm sure you'll want to watch more. 

Disclosure of Material Connection: Some of the links in the post above are “affiliate links.” This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."

March 27, 2013

a long time ago, we used to be friends* ... and now we're going to be friends again!

Two weeks ago, I arrived home from judging a speech meet, turned on my computer, and saw that my Twitter and Facebook feeds were overrun with Veronica Mars posts. I clicked on one of the links and learned the. best. news. Series creator Rob Thomas (not the guy from Matchbox Twenty) had struck a deal with Warner Brothers—if he could raise $2 million through a Kickstarter campaign, Warner Brothers would greenlight a VM movie.

I'm quite familiar with Kickstarter, as I've backed two (failed) projects in the past. Here's how it works: the creator sets a goal (in this case, $2 million in one month). He or she then offers "rewards" to people who support the project (these people are called backers). A backer can choose how much money to give based on the reward he or she wants. (A backer can also give more or less than the specified reward amounts.) If the goal is met, the project is funded. If the goal isn't met, then no one is out any money.

For a couple hours, I debated whether I wanted to become a backer. Of course I wanted to see the movie, but did I want to actually throw some of my hard earned money behind the project? I finally decided "yes" ... for entirely selfish reasons. I live in small town Nebraska, where chances of a Veronica Mars movie playing in a theater near me are slim to none. Sure, I could wait for the DVD, but did I really want to do that? No! So I'm backing the Veronica Mars movie at the $35 level, which will get me a pdf of the script (don't care), a t-shirt (kinda cool, but not necessary), and a digital copy of the film within a few days of its theatrical release. Now that's the kind of reward I want!

I backed the film when the project was at $1.8 million. Shortly thereafter, it rolled past $2 million. Right now, with 16 days left, it's at nearly $4.1 million. So it's definitely going to happen! Yippee!!!

Thomas and series star Kristen Bell put together this video announcing the project. If you're a VM fan, you need to watch this! (Just be aware there is some language, thanks to "Dick Casablancas" [Ryan Hansen].)

And here's a great article about the film ... including spoilers! (For something like this, I want all the spoilers!)

*The title of this post is a reference to The Dandy Warhols' song that served as the series' theme. You can see the opening credits here.

Have you backed any Kickstarter projects? And are you even remotely as excited as I am for the Veronica Mars movie?

March 18, 2013

need something to read or watch?

I love books. I love movies. I love TV.

This should come as a surprise to exactly ... no one.

What may surprise you is that I've recently been getting rid of some of my books, movies, and TV seasons. I decided to do this because recently I felt like God was asking me to. I don't want to overspiritualize anything here—it's not like I heard the voice of God say, "Becky, sell your stuff!" But one day while I was reading my Bible, I suddenly had the thought that I should go through my DVD collection and get rid of some things.

Ultimately, it doesn't matter if the thought came from God or just randomly popped into my brain; weeding things out of my collection is a good thing. When I started my blog Cinematic Survey in 2009, I had 162 movies and 39 television seasons on DVD. That number has risen substantially since then. And don't even get me started on my shelves and shelves of books!

About a year ago, I decided to go through my bookshelves and give the books I no longer wanted to the Nebraska Christian library. While it was hard to part with my books at first, each time I look through my shelves, I have an easier time getting rid of a book or ten. And I give away almost all of the review books I read, keeping only the ones I really really love.

While I've been quite happily giving away books, I've found it quite difficult to get rid of any movies. (My Cinematic Survey journey is proof of that—of the 85 movies I've reviewed, I initially decided to keep 72.) But when I had the prompting to go through my collection, I immediately pulled 10 or 12 things off the shelf. Comparatively, that's not very many, but it's a start.

I gave Blendy first pick, and she took several things. The remaining movies and TV seasons were listed on, and I've already sold two things (Bones seasons one and three—for much less than I paid for them, but for more than I'd have made if they remained on my shelf!). I have 13 things listed right now—if you're looking for a really good deal on Edward Scissorhands, I can totally hook you up!

Hopefully, I'll have the same experience with DVDs that I did with books and find that the more I go over the shelves, the easier it will be to weed out the things I don't need to keep. And maybe I'll even make a little money in the process!

March 9, 2013

much ado about whedon

I was first introduced to Shakespeare's Much Ado About Nothing in my college Shakespeare class. I read the play and fell in like. I watched the Kenneth Branagh film and fell in love.

I was first introduced to Joss Whedon when my brother and sister-in-law gave me their copy of Firefly to watch. After struggling a bit to make it through the pilot, I liked it. Then I watched Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog. I loved it. Then I bingewatched Dollhouse on Netflix. I joined the ranks of the Whedonites. The only "big" Whedon projects I haven't gotten into are Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Angel ... and that's because I don't do vampires. Period. I even liked The Cabin in the Woods, and I generally stay as far away from horror films as I can get!

So you can imagine my delight when I learned that Joss Whedon had filmed a modern-day adaptation of Much Ado. To make it even better, he used his friends—actors who have appeared in previous Whedon projects. Nathan Fillion. Amy Acker. Fran Kranz. Clark Gregg. Sean Maher. I could go on and on ... basically, if you're a fan of Whedon's work, you'll recognize a vast majority of the actors.

For a long time after the movie was announced, I couldn't find out much about it, other than the cast list. But now the film has a trailer AND a release date! (June 7—unfortunately, chances are probably pretty slim that it'll be showing in my area. Road trip, anyone?)

Here's the trailer. I couldn't be more excited!

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...