Movie/TV Reviews

Movie Review: Sunshine Cleaning

As some of you know, I don’t watch TV. In fact, I RARELY watch TV (though I have gotten into the habit of watching “The O’Reilly Factor” every night. WAIT! Come back! Don’t judge me on the fact that I like Fox News!).

But I do watch a lot of DVD’s.

On the treadmill.

Because I figure, hey, why not throw in a little exercise with my brainless activity?

I watch a lot of movies this way and without Kevin. My husband doesn’t have a lot of patience for most movies and prefers documentaries which … *YAWN*. So, watching movies on the treadmill works great for me.

I’d like to start keeping track of some of these movies. Mainly because I forget what I’ve watched and tend to rent them again (why yes, I AM that lame). But also because a lot of times, there was an aspect of the movie that struck a chord with me and I’d like to remember it for future reference.

You know, in case I ever get the urge to write a story based on that premise. (Said with some sarcasm because *snort* like that ever happens).

Sunshine Cleaning

sunshine-cleaning The biggest reason this movie appealed to me was because Amy Adams was in it. I loved her in “Enchanted” and just think she’s the cutest little actress.

And though I wasn’t expecting her to BE that character from “Enchanted,” I was still shocked – this was definitely a vastly different role for her.

I rarely agree with what critics say – and I mean rarely, but there was one observation that I thought summed the movie up perfectly, “Funny and gently heartbreaking.” Says Vanity Fair.

And that’s exactly what it was.

The premise behind the movie is Amy’s character, Rose, is a single mom trying to make ends meet. She works as a maid and though it doesn’t make her a lot of money and she doesn’t exactly enjoy it, she’s good at it.

The father of her son, an old high-school flame, is a cop and suggests she get into the cleaning up after a crime scene business. He convinces her she could make a lot more money doing it and it’s not much different than what she’s currently doing. Not to mention, not a lot of people have the stomach for it, so she could probably always find work.

So, Rose talks her sister, Norah, into starting the business with her. The girls are pretty amusing when they first start out because they have no idea what they’re doing and they walk into some pretty grisly scenes. But after a while, they get the hang of it and Rose discovers that she actually likes doing it. Not because of WHAT she does, but for what she CONTRIBUTES to the situation — She helps people physically move past their personal tragedies.

In addition to the job, Rose is forced to deal with her past — with the father of her child, with her father, with her emotionally-messed up sister, and with her old high school “friends.” She’s a woman who is stuck between wanting to live her life and not being able to let go of her past.

I think the biggest message behind this movie was the fact that though it’s important to address the past, it’s equally important not to LIVE in the past. And that it’s okay to like off-the-wall people and things because life is not about trying to assimilate and blend in, but to embrace the differences.

I’d give it a C+.

If you’ve seen “Sunshine Cleaning,” what did you think about of it?

Photo Story Friday

Photo Story Friday: My Old Man

For those that don’t know, this is my husband, Kevin. Yes, he’s older than I am .,. by four years. 😀

Dressed as an Old Man

This was back when he and I worked at the bank together (’88/’89). That’s where we met.

It was Halloween and everyone dressed up. I, along with two other girls that worked the lobby with me, dressed up as one of the Three Blind Mice.

Kevin whittled down some fake hair to make his goatee and mustache, painted streaks of gray in the fake hair as well as his own hair and his eyebrows and went dressed as an older gentleman.

In fact, he was SO convincing, that the older lady customers that came through that day hit on him!


It was hilarious and we gave him such a hard time.

I can’t help but wonder if this is how he’ll look when he’s actually old(er).

If so? RAWR.


The Rug Has Been Yanked Out From Under Us

This is a post I’ve wanted to write for quite some time, but for a variety of reasons, I was not allowed to write. This issue has been weighing heavily on my mind and heart for a while and pretty much all I’ve been able to think about.

I’m not even sure how to begin other than to just jump in and say, we’re now part of that growing unemployment rate.

I’ll have to be impossibly vague about this news, of course, but suffice it to say, my husband’s company is on the verge of some big-time restructuring changes.

I’ve suspected we were heading down this path for quite some time, but the company made it public yesterday.

I’m angry, scared, determined, apprehensive, and bitter. And that bitterness is directed toward the government. Because this current administration? Is directly responsible for this turn of events.

And I will leave it at that. If I say anything more, it’ll end up being a political rant and I just don’t want to go down that road right now. It’s pointless. What’s done is done.

All we can do at this point in time is damage control.

But through the myriad of emotions tumbling through my confusion right now, I’m especially humbled. It’s so easy to take life for granted, to always assume that one’s job will be there. That there will always be a steady trickle of money coming in.

And then suddenly, it’s all gone. A force, outside our control, has ripped that security from our hands. That’s so incredibly frustrating.

My heart goes out to all of my husband’s constituents. This is not a good time to lose one’s job. It’s never a good time to lose one’s job. But with unemployment in the double digits and the holidays coming up, it’s just bad timing.

I’ve never been fired. I’ve never been in this situation where one day I have a job, and the next, I don’t. So I can’t fully appreciate what these poor people are thinking or going through right now. I can’t imagine what the conversations were about at the dinner table last night but I can tell you, we’ll be fine.

This will be an adjustment for us, but our hardship will be NOTHING like the struggle so many other people are being forced to endure right now.

But whatever happens, we’ll be fine.

I know this because first and foremost, I trust God. He has never failed us – EVER. He will help us help ourselves. We will move on. It’s scary, suddenly having that rug yanked out from under us, but we’ll survive largely because we have God watching our backs.

Secondly, our lives are a bit more flexible right now. I can, and most certainly will, get a job in the very near future. Dude is now eligible to get his driver’s license, so he can help out with Jazz’s extra-curricular activities, if needed. Dude is also old enough to get a job, but I’d prefer that be a last resort as I’d rather have the boy concentrate on his studies right now.

But still, it’s a viable option. And I like options.

And Kevin? Is choosing to look at this turn of events as a way of possibly doing something different with his life. It’s an opportunity to pursue other interests, to try new things. And I’m excited for him. I want him to be happy and content in whatever he decides to do. And I will support him 150%.

This change is both exciting and terrifying at the same time.

I’m not a big fan of change. I like things slow, steady and predictable. There’s control in that stability. When things change, the control shifts and we’re suddenly left flailing our arms on the precipice of a new adventure. And though I’ve never been one to back away from a new challenge, I’m not exactly a person who LOOKS for those challenges either.

We told the boys what was going on last night. They weren’t really freaked out, but then again, I’m not sure they really understand what’s happening. I mean, they KNOW what’s happening, it’s just, I don’t think they really understand how this will impact our family.

Financially, we’ll be okay. We don’t have a lot of debt and this has been a good excuse to talk to the boys about the importance of paying things off and not having a lot of debt to begin with. But we’ll still be tightening our belts and watching every penny – even more so than usual. But again, we’re choosing to focus on the positive and not the negative.

Of course I say this now, let’s see what happens six months from now.

So, like soooo many other Americans, we’re now in the same unemployed boat. Let’s hope the vessel can safely hold all of us until we hit land once again.


Video: Volunteer Activities

I’m participating in the Say it Face to Face web conversation. In essence, someone asks a question and we respond to those questions via video.

The below video is my response to the questions: “Do you volunteer? If so, what sorts of volunteer activities do you participate in?”

I’d like to apologize for this video. I couldn’t BE any more of a dweeb. Geez louise.

Anyway, I meant to add that volunteering your time and talents is a great way to give back to the community at large, not just in the schools. Not only does it bless those you’re helping, but it truly blesses you, too.

And you never know, it could also lead to a paying job down the line.

If you would like to volunteer, but you don’t know where to start or what you could offer, I ran across a website the other day that might help. It’s called iParticipate and you can put in something you’re good at, like website design, for instance, and the database will pull up volunteer opportunities that pertain to the search item you submitted for your immediate area.

Cool, right?

So tell me readers, what sorts of volunteer activities are you involved with?


POW! Right in the Kisser

pow These past few days have kicked my ass.

I’m sorry to say the a-word, but they have.

Remember a few days back when I was bragging sharing that we, as in I, rarely get sick?

“Oh! Look at ME! I never get sick! I’m so special! La-dee-da! Whee! I must know some secret that keeps viruses from getting me down! I’m so AWESOME!!”


Karma bit me good. She not only bit me, she’s STILL hanging on.

The b*tch.

I caught whatever Dude had. And MAN … talk about a wicked head cold. Now I REALLY feel guilty for sending him to school that day because this virus? Sucks rocks.

My head was not only clogged, it was a solid mass of crusty snot.

(I do hope you aren’t eating when you read this).

I couldn’t breathe. And I went through about two bottles of nose spray in an attempt to get oxygen to my brain (okay, that was an exaggeration, it was only 1 … and a half-ish).

It started Friday night when we went to the football game. (Jazz played great, by the way. They performed their third set, and it was awesome, and we taped it, but again, you can’t really hear it because of the crowd, so we’ll try again some other time).

I just had that … feeling. You know the feeling, right? That icky, itchy feeling in the back of your throat when you know you’re coming down with something?

To top it off, monthly myrtle came to pay me a visit. AND, I’ve been having digestive issues again. So yeah, I felt like warm dung that evening and it got progressively worse over the weekend.

By Sunday, I was thisclose to being comatose.

I napped. I took it easy and by the time Sunday night rolled around, and I barked up enough phlegm to coat the bottom of a frying pan (I DO hope you’re not eating while reading this), I started feeling marginally better.

By the time Monday morning rolled around, I had a spurt of energy and I mopped the floors and cleaned bathrooms.

With bleach.

Which didn’t exactly HELP my trying to get over my sickness so that by the time the afternoon rolled around, I had trouble thinking straight, let alone trying to post anything on this blog.

I feel much better today. Still not 100%, but definitely human again. I still sound nasally and whiny (thanks for that, Kevin), but I think I might have dodged the sinus infection bullet – we’ll see what happens in the next few days. (I’d go into detail about why I think I might have a sinus infection, but the symptoms? Are not pretty and I’ve already ruined your appetite once [twice]).

So, I’m getting over a bad head cold.

I’ll live to see another day.