Just Can't Get Into It

Almost all bloggers out there post about things they love: current fashion trends, favorite shows and songs, or beauty products and tips. I love that about this community. I get turned on to so many things I may have never heard about or tried before. But this post is about things that are all the rave in blogland (or on all social media, for that matter) that I seriously can't get into. Don't get mad at me though! I sometimes get offended and defensive when people claim they hate something I'm passionate about (ahem, Empire Records), but I'm not here to make enemies. Anyway, here goes...

Sam Smith. He's such a bore! Of course he's talented and I love his vocals on Latch by Disclosure (not his solo version), but his songs are so slow and whiny and when he sings he looks like he's going to burst into tears at any moment. Not my thing.

Erin Condren. I fell for the hype a few years ago and got myself a LifePlanner, but wasn't impressed. It was too bulky, I hated the giant spiral, and had no desire to color code or use stickers for anything. I've always been a paper planner person but don't tote mine around so I find perfectly acceptable (and cute) ones at Target for under $15.

Pumpkin spice. Anything with pumpkin flavor makes me gag. Oh wait, one time I made a decent pumpkin cheesecake that I didn't hate, but I didn't prefer it either. I wonder if this food trend has an expiration date.

Monograms. I don't get why everything has to have your initials on it? Are you afraid someone is going to steal from you? Alright fine. Maybe I'm just jealous because my initials are ugly. I do like getting things with a "C" on them, but it almost always looks like a copyright symbol and that's not fun.

A Christmas Story. My dad loved this movie and we watched it constantly as kids, way before TBS ran 24-hour marathons. I liked it back then, but now when it's on I feel like it's just too noisy and I get irritable. It's also over-quoted and doesn't capture the Christmas spirit for me at all.

Selfies. Not all of them, just the ones posted for absolutely no reason that seem to say, "I'm just hanging out in my car at a stoplight. Tell me how pretty I am!" Or when someone's all, "I'm at the beach!" but there's no scenery in sight. Got on a cute outfit? Good hair day? Drinking or eating something delicious?  Fun accessories? New makeup? Date night or hanging out with friends? Click away! I do like seeing your face, but I'll never understand ones with the captions like, "At the DMV!"

Family parody videos. I admit I loved Swagger Wagon when it came out, but it was an ad, professionally done, with actual actors. I cannot get into regular people setting up their tripods trying to get internet famous. Like bored housewives singing about too much laundry and whiny kids to the latest pop song. Or families singing their annual holiday letter instead of writing it out and sending it to the forty people who actually care. (I'm looking at you, Holderness family. Your new one is the worst). BTW, SNL nailed it last Christmas!

Schmidt. Ladies looooove him and I just don't get it. I think he's hilarious and makes me laugh out loud episode after episode, but I'd never want to date a guy like that! He's a whiny weirdo and the reason they have a douchebag jar! I just don't understand the romantic appeal. If I had to pick a guy from New Girl, it'd be Winston. Nick is too grumpy for me. Winston is so underrated!

Wizard of Oz. It's a classic book and the movie was groundbreaking. Jacob loves everything by L. Frank Baum, but nothing he's done has ever been able to hold my interest. (Except for the movie Return to Oz because it was creepy. Plus, Fairuza Balk.) And don't get me started on Wicked. I'm the only person in the world who doesn't like it! The main roles call for actresses with serious pipes, but I just felt like I was getting screamed at for 2 1/2 hours.

Gender reveal parties. Of course I was excited to find out the gender of my kids and I even texted my parents, siblings, and a few friends as soon I learned what it was. I just can't imagine planning a party with special treats, party favors, and big reveal for everyone I know. Do people, besides those closest to you, really care if it's a boy or a girl? Some things don't have to be shouted from to rooftops, guys. 

Ok, I'm done being grumpy. Bah humbug, right? I hope I didn't offend anyone!
Now tell me, what are some things everyone loves that you just don't understand?


(Un)Happy Thanksgiving

Well that post title is a bit dramatic, isn't it? But I just don't care about Thanksgiving. Let me explain. 

My mom and biological father (let's call him "Tim") divorced when I was one. My mom remarried when I was three and I was blessed with the dad my "real" one would never be. (I put real in quotes, because genetics absolutely do not make him my real, actual father, but some people like to say that's what he is because it was his sperm or whatever). While growing up, Tim made an attempt to have a relationship with me, probably because of the parenting plan. Thankfully I only had to visit him every other month or so. 

Tim remarried when I eleven and my step-mom was my saving grace. She welcomed me with open arms, and since her daughters were about my age she loved to plan fun things for us girls to do. Tim was around, but mostly watched football on weekends. He occasionally took us to the zoo or on drives up Mt. Rainier, but my step-sisters and I would rather be roller skating or hanging out at the mall. Tim was always nice, but it felt like I was visiting an uncle or something and as a shy child, I was never completely comfortable with him. We didn't have any sort of bond. Throughout middle school I down to visiting him two weeks over the summer, a week over winter break, a few days over spring break, and every single Thanksgiving. 

Thanksgiving wasn't a big deal on my mom's side of the family. My grandma had ten kids (TEN!) who had in-laws all over the country. She insisted that each one of us be present on Christmas Eve, but we could make other plans on Christmas Day and Thanksgiving. My dad's family lives in the south, so we never spent the holidays with them. Every Thanksgiving, my mom would make a traditional dinner for my immediate family and my grandma, with a stray aunt or cousin attending. 

But I was off to Tim's house for Thanksgiving weekend. We didn't spend it with his/my side of the family though; we hung out with my step-mom's family. Over time I got to know them and they were all very nice, but it felt strange. I'd rather be at my own house with my cousins and playing all weekend with my neighbors. I dreaded Thanksgiving.

In high school, I really hated it. I had a social life, and because this was before cell phones and email, I was cut off from everyone for four days, which was torture for a teen. My step-sisters were involved with their own friends and boyfriends, so our time together wasn't as quality. I finally got out of it in 11th grade because my boyfriend invited me to spend Thanksgiving with him. Tim and my step-mom were going through some issues at that time, so they didn't push my visit. I thoroughly believe my step-mom was the one to initiate all contact with me, so when they divorced the following year, Tim was done. The last time I saw them was at my high school graduation. (I've reunited with my step-mom and step-sisters because of Facebook and they are still as lovely as ever. Tim called me once after I got married, but never again.)

I spent a few Thanksgivings with my boyfriend and when my grandma passed away (when I was 19), Thanksgiving stopped being anything remotely special at my parents' house. It was just the five of us with a turkey, which I don't even like. Now there are four grandsons, which makes it a little more fun, but my family gets together all the time, so again, it's not that special.

Tim wasn't a bad guy, in the typical sense of the word, and nothing horrible happened to me. He was just selfish and judgmental and we never had a real relationship because I wasn't a boy. (He actually admitted to that. He wanted a boy and I was a disappointment.) There's not one day when I feel sad that he's not in my life. I hardly ever think about him and would hate to have to force a relationship. But it was annoying enough to leave a bad taste in my mouth about this holiday.

I am, however, extremely grateful for my dad who wanted me from day one. He has never treated me differently than my brother and sister, has always believed in me, pushed me, helped me, and loved me and my kids unconditionally. I really do have a lot to be thankful for, I just don't want to talk about it while eating stuffing. Or sweet potatoes. Or cranberry sauce. Or green bean casserole. Or pumpkin pie. Thanksgiving food is gross. I'm bringing a ham this year!

Regardless of my issues, I hope YOU have a wonderful holiday!



Time for a Vegas recap! If you follow me on Instagram, I'm sure you got tired of my constant posts, but I gotta blog about it anyway. Misty and I met down there on Friday afternoon and spent three nights exploring the city from downtown to the bottom of the strip. We kicked it off Friday night with Mexican food (check out my giant margarita and giant taco salad!) and David Copperfield's show, then wandered up the strip, taking in all the lights and sights.

We spent a long time on Saturday trying to get brunch. When we planned our trip, I had no idea that the Rock 'n' Roll Marathon was going to be in town the same weekend. Hotels were outrageously priced and everywhere we went was packed with an extra 45,000 participants plus their friends and family. Way to research, Christina. We finally got food next to the flamingos at The Flamingo! Then we wandered the strip some more, shopped, gambled a tiny bit, and visited Shark Reef Aquarium and Sea Monsters Revealed at Mandalay Bay.

Saturday night was our main event. Britney: Piece of Me was awesome! Ms. Spears performed all her hits, had tons of energy, and looked like she was having so much fun. The stage, sets and costumes were so cool. We had a blast!

We spent Sunday exploring downtown Vegas. We started at The Neon Museum to see all the old hotel and casino signs from Vegas's past. The little museum is collecting, studying, and restoring signs then placing them throughout the city. Kinda cool! Our next stop was the Mob Museum, which was put together so well! It was fun and informative and am now on a mission to learn more about the Kefauver hearings. We followed it up with lunch and people-watching on Fremont Street.

Then we went to see the show I've been dying to see since I got married in Vegas in 2006! (It was impossible to get tickets back then because it was so new. And when I went again in 2010, no one else was interested. Boo.) The Beatles LOVE was so great! The music was fantastic and there was so much to watch. Everyone is so talented! We couldn't take any pictures, so I only snapped the stage before and after the show.

We woke up on Monday with enough time to pack and grab breakfast at SLS before heading to the airport. It was a much needed break from my crazy family and it was so nice to hang out in person with my online bestie! 


Fall Film Challenge: Bonus Round Reivews

Last month on Facebook, Jenn asked us who our least favorite actors were and we were all quick to chime in. I wrote Anne Hathaway, Ben Stiller, Nicolas Cage, and Gwyneth Paltrow. Jenn revealed the bonus list on October 15th, comprised of all the people we hate. So clever. And mean. And all four of my choices were on there.

Since Jacob's still recovering from knee surgery and in bed every day after work, he sort of pushed me to finish my list in a hurry. We watched a movie together almost every night and I completed my bonus list on November 3, which means I watched fifty movies in sixty-three days! THAT'S SO MANY MOVIES. I miss my TV shows!

1. Anne Hathaway: Interstellar Everyone loves this movie, but...I fell asleep. I was more into it on night two, and though I liked everyone's performance (except Hathaway, because I can't stand her), it felt too long and too slow to be amazing.

2. Ben Stiller: Flirting With Disaster What a weird movie. I liked it though! Ben didn't bother me as much as he usually does and I really enjoyed the rest of the cast.

3. Miley Cyrus: Bolt It was cute and my kids thought it was fun. Jacob laughed more than he should have at the stupid hamster. I was really impressed by the animation.

4. Vin Diesel: Boiler Room It was a little long, but I liked it. The cast was great, especially Giovanni Ribisi, Scott Caan, and yes, even Vin Diesel. I think they could have cut the love story though.

5. Eddie Murphy: Beverly Hills Cop I liked it and thought Eddie was pretty great! Good music, good fashion. Haha! I won't be rushing out to see the sequels though.

6. Will Ferrell: Casa de mi Padre I know it's a spoof, but it should be kind of funny, right? I chuckled a few times, but it got old real fast. Jacob enjoyed it because he's weird.

7. Gwyneth Paltrow: Sliding Doors I can't stand her, but she wasn't too terrible here. It was an original take on a rom-com, but kinda slow toward the end before it picked up and finished fast.

8. Katie Holmes: Teaching Mrs. Tingle I don't know why I didn't see this when it came out. I was into this type of movie as a teen. I love the cast (Helen Mirren! Jeffrey Tambor! And I even like Katie Holmes). It wasn't amazing or anything, but I was entertained. 

9. Ione Skye: Haunt Eh. It wasn't terrible, but it wasn't anything special or original. It wasn't very suspenseful either, so when the ghosts popped up out of nowhere, it did make me jump.

10. Jonah Hill: True Story I was happy that this movie cut right to the chase and I was totally interested in the first half. It lost me after that though. I felt like it could have been a made-for-TV movie.

11. Ashton Kutcher: Down To You I used to love Freddie Prinze Jr, but this was not good. Julia Stiles was boring and Ashton was embarrassing. It tried really hard to be a fun teen movie, but failed.

12. Justin Long: Serious Moonlight It was quirky, and the acting was fine, but  it was also kind of boring. I wish Kristen Bell had more screen time.

13. Maggie Gyllenhaal: Frank So strange, but funny and I absolutely loved Michael Fassbender. Maggie was just fine too. Though I think she takes herself too seriously, she's a pretty good actress.

14. Nicolas Cage: Left Behind Terrible, terrible movie. Bad performances, over-dramatic, and just stupid. Nic must be taking anything he can get at this point.

15. Owen Wilson: She's Funny That Way I'll watch anything Jennifer Aniston is in, even though it's usually crap. This movie was no exception, but she was the best part of the whole thing. It felt like a knock-off Woody Allen movie. I wasn't bored at all though, it was just weird and kind of dumb.

16. Pauly Shore: Bucky Larson: Born to Be a Star Oh. My. God. I really should have googled this one before I added it! So terrible and gross and just no. I knew I was going to hate it within the first 15 seconds. I don't understand why any of the cast participated in this!

17. John C. Reilly: Days of Thunder I didn't think I'd like this one because I don't care at all about racing. It was predictable, but not bad. Tom and Nicole were so cute.

18. Sylvester Stallone: Cop Land Jacob suggested this one because I wanted to steer clear of Sly's action/fight movies. I liked it! It wasn't amazing, but it wasn't boring either. Such a great cast! 

19. Tyler Perry: Why Did I Get Married? It was pretty melodramatic and the ending was drawn out. I just thought the plot was weird too. Who takes all their friends on a trip and counsels them? Awkward.

20. Channing Tatum: Magic Mike XXL If the first movie was criticized for being to serious, this one made up for it by being way too cheesy. It was slow and so embarrassing at some points. The final scene saved it. ;) 

21. Vince Vaughn: Domestic Disturbance This seriously could have been a Lifetime Original. For a thriller, it was not at all thrilling. I watched the whole thing, but still don't know why Vince's character was a psychopath. 

22. Patrick Wilson: The Ledge This "suspenseful thriller" wasn't suspenseful or thrilling at all. It was slow and Liv Tyler and Terrance Howard bugged me. Patrick Wilson was good (seriously, who doesn't like him?), but his character was creepy.

23. Megan Fox: The Dictator It was so stupid, but I definitely laughed at some of it. Haha! It was a pretty short movie, but somehow felt too long.

24. Gary Busey: The Buddy Holly Story I used to listen to Buddy Holly with my aunt growing up and was only slightly aware of his story. I really liked it and thought Busey was amazing!

25. Renee Zellwegger: Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason I didn't love the first movie so I never really wanted to see this one. It wasn't great by any means, but it wasn't unwatchable either.


1995 Playlist

I recently read an article about twenty songs that turned twenty years old this year. That brings us back to 1995. Why does that only seem like ten years ago to me?! On this day twenty years ago, I was a junior in high school, which was my favorite grade in all my years of school. I was in this weird experimental block of classes with eighteen other students and it was a blast. I was totally in love with my first real boyfriend who worshiped me. I was still good friends with all my junior high besties, but also had a great new group of girlfriends (that I'm still friends with today). And Jacob and I became best buds while sitting next to each other in homeroom every day. Awww...

I feel like the '90s were such a great time for music. I'm sure that's mostly because these songs remind me of people, places, and experiences in my life, but I think these songs have stood the test of time. Take a look at what I was listening to in 1995.

Waterfalls by TLC
I Got a Girl by Tripping Daisy
Gangsta's Paradise by Coolio
Plowed by Sponge
You Oughta Know by Alanis Morissette
Warped by Red Hot Chili Peppers
Freak Like Me by Adina Howard
1979 by The Smashing Pumpkins
I Can't Be With You by The Cranberries
Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This) by Marilyn Manson
Kiss From a Rose by Seal
Can't Wait One Minute More by Civ
Lightning Crashes by Live
Lump by The Presidents of the United States of America
Water Runs Dry by Boyz II Men
Say It Ain't So by Weezer
Time Bomb by Rancid
Girl Like You by Edwin Collins
Just a Girl by No Doubt
One Sweet Day by Mariah Carey
Good by Better Than Ezra
Famous by Super Deluxe
This Is A Call by Foo Fighters
This Is How We Do It by Montell Jordan
Fake Plastic Trees by Radiohead
Candy Rain by Soul For Real
It's Oh So Quiet by Bjork
Only Wanna Be With You by Hootie and the Blowfish
More Human Than Human by White Zombie
When I Come Around by Green Day
Hurt by Nine Inch Nails
Scream by Michael and Janet Jackson
I'll Be There For You by The Rembrandts
What If God Was One Of Us by Joan Osborne
Don't Take It Personal (Just One Of Dem Days) by Monica
Santa Monica by Everclear
Big Poppa by The Notorious B.I.G.
Violet by Hole
Name by Goo Goo Dolls
Run-Around by Blues Traveler
Hey Man, Nice Shot by Filter
Only Happy When It Rains by Garbage
In The Meantime by Spacehog
Til I Hear It From You by Gin Blossoms
I Wish by Skee-lo
Angry Johnny by Poe
Glycerine by Bush

And finally, one of the greatest songs of all time...

Wonderwall by Oasis

Do any of these songs bring back memories for you,
or am I just an old lady reminiscing about the good old days?

If you feel like taking a trip down memory lane, you can listen to my Spotify playlist right here.