Movies From My Childhood

As a kid of the '80s and early '90s, I grew up watching some amazing movies. We were one of the first people I knew to have a VCR and VHS rewinder machine thing. Did those have an official name? They were a modern marvel, that's all I know. We lived two blocks away from video rental store and visited it a few times a week and almost daily in the summer months. We also loved to record movies from TV onto VHS to watch whenever we wanted. These are the movies that defined my childhood.

My little bother's favorites were anything involving an adventure, so we rented them a lot. Space Camp was the best and put the idea in my head that I could be an astronaut. Thanks a lot, stupid movie. We also loved Pee-Wee's Big Adventure, The Goonies, Flight of the Navigator, Labyrinth, and Back to the Future. 

We also really loved monster movies. Beetlejuice is still so amazing! That's what started my love affair with Tim Burton. Little Monsters was probably too young for me, but I still liked watching it with my little siblings. The Monster Squad was pretty good. I remember having a big crush on badass Rudy, played by Ryan Lambert, who was also on Kids, Incorporated

We watched a ton of Christmas movies throughout the year. Home Alone is the best, hands down. We still quote it constantly with some of the most obscure lines. A Christmas Story was one of my dad's favorites. I liked it as a kid, but I think it's obnoxious now. I know that's not a popular opinion, don't hate me. Most people have never heard of Babes in Toyland. Annette Funicello and Tom Sands star in this musical about an emending wedding, stolen sheep, a murder plot, and a broke-down toy maker. It's a very, very strange movie based on a 1903 operetta. We recorded it from TV, memorized the songs, and watched it all the time. 

For some reason, we liked a lot of movies about babysitters. Don't Tell Mom the Babysitter's DeadUncle Buck, and Adventures in Babysitting are all great movies! I wanted to be Sue Ellen Crandell (Christina Applegate) and also wanted Uncle Buck to come live with us. I miss John Candy.

As the oldest child with a little sister who did whatever I said, I unfairly got to choose the majority of the movies. Our favorite tween movies were She's Out of Control (ugly-duckling-transforms-to-swan story), Ferris Bueller's Day Off (no need to explain this plot, right? I couldn't wait for high school after I watched it), Cry-Baby (Johnny Depp plays a teen rebel and starts dating a square which causes an uproar in 1950s Baltimore), Like Father Like Son (classic trading places film. I loved it because Kirk Cameron was my number one childhood crush), Mannequin (which was probably too mature for us, but we loved it, and inspired us to make up a Mannequin game to play in the front yard), and Girls Just Want To Have Fun (the first dance movie we ever saw. It's on Netflix. You should check it out for the sweet '80s moves alone).

We watched a ton coming-of-age movies with our neighborhood friends. My Girl made me cry every single time. (By the way, Anna Chlumsky as Amy on Veep is awesome!) The Sandlot was one of my brother's favorites. We loved that misfit group of kids playing baseball all summer. The girls in the neighborhood really loved Now and Then and we always wished our adventures (but not our home lives) were as cool as theirs. We listened to the soundtrack all the time, which got us hooked on oldies. It also started my girl crush on Christina Ricci.

We watched a few teen movies too. Wayne's World was THE BEST. I saw it in the movie theater with my brother about a week after I discovered Bohemian Rhapsody by Queen and thought that scene was the best thing ever. We were pretty big Pauly Shore fans back then. I know, but I was like thirteen, give me a break. We loved Encino Man and Son In Law. I still watch the latter every Thanksgiving.

We even liked some movies meant for older audiences. Steel Magnolias was my dad's absolute favorite. He grew up in the south and I think it reminded him of home. We had the soundtrack, which is mostly instrumental, and he forced us to listen to in silence in the car. We moaned and groaned every time my dad re-rented Some Kind of Wonderful, but watched it every time and it's still one of my favorite John Hughes movies. Pure Country was a movie we watched in the early '90s just as we were starting to listen to country music. It was my introduction to George Strait.

My dad was really into horror movies. I'm sure we were too young for some of them, but we'd rent them in the middle of a sunny day and watch with him in the room. Poltergeist, The People Under The Stairs and When A Stranger Calls Back were our favorites. Not When A Stranger Calls, I'm talking about the made-for-TV sequel with the super scary ending that haunted us for years! I still think about that one when I'm home alone at night.

I would still watch any of those movies, but these next five movies were the ones I loved the most and are still my favorites to this day. Buffy the Vampire Slayer was perfection. I still talk about it like it came out a year ago. Footloose will always be my favorite '80s movie. Nothing beats Kevin Bacon dancing out all his aggression in that old warehouse. We all know how awesome Jurassic Park is. I explained the plot to Nolan the other day and he was definitely interested. I can't wait until he's a little older so we can watch it together. A League of Their Own was a movie we watched on repeat. It held a special place in our hearts because my grandma was a Rockford Peach. Not until a few years later when the league died down, but still pretty cool! My sister and I knew every single word to Speed. I'm pretty sure she could still recite it from beginning to end. 

Have you seen all these movies?
What were your favorites as a kid?


When Leeann and I bought tickets to see One Direction in Philadelphia, we didn't pay any attention to the date of the show. Turns out the concert was in the middle of the week. Because we we were going to be so close to New York we decided to start there and split our time between the two cities. Since Jodi lives in Boston, she decided to bus it over and hang out with us for a few days. This was my third time in the Big Apple, but we did a few things that were totally new to me, so it was a lot of fun. I love everything it about NYC. I would seriously pick up and move there in a heartbeat if Jacob would let us.

We stayed in Midtown East and had a great view from our hotel room!
After eating at a little diner we went to a rooftop bar to get a better look at the Chrysler Building.

Bright and early the next morning we went downtown to visit the 9/11 Memorial and Museum. 

We grabbed a slice of pizza and took the Staten Island ferry to get a closer look at the Statue of Liberty.

In order to make the most of our time and see as much as we could, we took a double decker bus tour.

We ended the day in Central Park and met up with more bloggers for dinner at the Loeb Boathouse.
I had so much fun with Kimberlee, Jodi, Allison, Kelly, and Leeann and really loved the picturesque restaurant.

The next morning we went to the top of 30 Rock to get a 360 view of Manhattan.

We jumped back on the bus and took a tour of upper Manhattan.
I didn't take many pictures because it started to rain.
After the tour, we had a late lunch at the famous Carnegie Deli.

 Jodi had to head back to Boston that night. Leeann and I took one more bus tour over to Brooklyn.
It POURED down rain on us. We thought it was pretty hilarious.

The next morning we had to get to Penn Station super early for our train to Philadelphia.
Stay tuned!

One Direction Concert

Last week Leeann and I went to New York City and Philadelphia, and I'll definitely recap the sights we saw, but let's cut right to the chase: the whole point of the trip was to see One Direction in concert at Lincoln Financial Field in Philly. Leeann and I have met each other three times prior to this vacation. We had brunch when I was in San Diego, she took me out for dinner when I was in Anaheim, and she came up to see Seattle last fall. We realized then that we are very compatible travel partners and decided to take a trip somewhere soon. When One Direction announced their Where We Are Tour she jokingly asked if I wanted to go and I said yes! I didn't really know anything about them, but you know me, I'm always down for a concert and I have a special place in my heart for boy bands. Instead of flying to California to see them with her, we decided to pick a tour date and visit a new city together.

Leeann is a pretty big fan of One Direction and Harry Styles. I didn't really know anything about them besides the choruses of a few singles and the song Story of My Life because it's Milo's favorite. But I did my homework. I rented their DVD last winter, I listened to their latest album a couple times, and I read a few articles (mostly from Buzzfeed, full of gifs) about their latest tour. About a week before our vacation I loaded my iPhone with their setlist and listened to it on repeat. I was finally getting into it! It also helped that I developed quite the crush on the Irish twerp, Niall. (More on that in a later post.) I was ready and super excited for the concert. Leeann even made us t-shirts, as a joke.

The show was really fun! Concerts at stadiums can be difficult because they are just so big, but the set utilized a lot of space and the screens were huge. There was also lots of confetti, light shows, and tons of fireworks. They played 24 songs without any medleys or remixes and even gave a little shout out to Philly with the theme from The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air. It was different from any other boy bands I've seen because there were no costumes, choreography or scripts. These guys have a blast running around on stage. They constantly interact with the audience and mess with each other when they aren't singing. They wrestle, have water fights, throw stuff at each other, change up the lyrics, and dance like adorable idiots. They don't take themselves seriously at all, but definitely have pride in what they do and are very grateful. They sounded great the whole time and put on an awesome show. It's safe to say that I'm a huge fan. Borderline obsessed. They are touring overseas in 2015, but when they come back to the states I'll definitely be there! You should read this article, which sums up how old Leanne and I felt, except that the author is ten years younger than I am!

I'm linking up with Leeann and Kimberlee!

Summer Playlist

Remember when I asked if Iggy Azalea's Fancy was the song of the summer? I haven't listened to it for months. These are the jams I've been playing this season.

Heartbreak Dream - Betty Who

Wiggle - Jason Derulo ft Snoop Dogg

First Love - Jennifer Lopez

Sheezus - Lily Allen

Somebody To You - The Vamps ft Demi Lovato

Come Get It Bae - Pharrell ft Miley Cyrus

Lemonade - Danity Kane ft Tyga

Black Widow - Iggy Azalea ft Rita Ora

Sing - Ed Sheeran

Boom Clap - Charli XCX

Unbroken - Britney Spears

Not a Bad Thing - Justin Timberlake

Just One Of The Guys - Jenny Lewis

I Wanna Get Better - Bleachers

The Ting Tings - Wrong Club

Scarecrow - Alex & Sierra

Do It Again - Röyksopp & Robyn

Really Don't Care - Demi Lovato ft Cher Lloyd

Fever - The Black Keys

I Will Never Let You Down - Rita Ora

She Came To Give It To You - Usher ft Nicki Minaj

Icona Pop - Get Lost

One Direction - You & I

Lily Allen - L8 CMMR

What are you listening to this summer?

High School Survey

A friend of mine recently went to her 15 year high school reunion. (Is that a thing? We only have them every ten years). She was given a questionnaire to fill out before hand so everyone could read each other's answers. I decided to take a trip down memory lane and answer a few. I left out all the ones about my favorite teacher and which classmate inspired me, because, who cares.

Where did you sit during lunch?
I hung out with different cliques every year, so it changed. I sat in the cafeteria with my preppy friends sophomore year, outside with my stoner/skater friends junior year, and on the floor under the cafeteria windows with a big mix of my girlfriends and their boyfriends senior year. I honestly don't know why we sat on the floor. I think our group was too big (and too cool, obviously) for tables.

What did you typically eat for lunch?
Crap. I tried to bring my lunch because waiting in line took up half the lunch period and the food was gross. If I didn't pack it, I got a pizza pocket from the snack line and washed it down with a Coke and some Skittles. See? Literal crap.

Did you have a best friend?
I had the same on-again off-again BFF since 5th grade. There were time periods when we didn't get along (due to her boyfriends or my other groups of friends), but we always found our way back to each other and really did have a lot of fun. We were just completely different people. As soon as we graduated and didn't have school in common anymore, we stopped trying. We're friendly on Facebook. 

Did you have an arch enemy?
Didn't every high school girl hate another one for absolutely no reason at some point? I didn't enjoy my boyfriend's ex-girlfriend who seemed to be obsessed with me senior year, even though they broke up three years prior. She literally followed me around from 30 feet away for a while. I kinda let my BFF battle that one for me though. She was not a girl's girl and had a ton of one-sided fights and loved the drama. I also didn't like the girlfriend of one of my friends, but I think it's because he told her our friendship was more than it was and she didn't like me first. But there wasn't one particular girl or incident that scarred me. 

Did you have a secret crush on anyone?
I don't think any crushes are secret in high school, are they? Unless you seriously don't tell one single soul about them, but that's not what girls do and no one can keep their mouth shut when they find out about one. Sophomore year I had an embarrassing crush on a senior butt rocker. (Please tell me you know that term. To be clear, he wasn't an '80s hairband, mullet and tank top butt rocker. He wore a Metallica or Tool tee, a flannel, jeans and Chucks every day, like a good '90s era Satellite should.) We had absolutely nothing in common. I was a quiet, preppy 14-year old girl who listened to Boyz II Men and Ace of Base. He was an 18-year old man who smoked cigarettes, drove an old, loud, fast car, and had a slight mustache. Ew, it's so creepy when I really think about it! He wasn't even that cute (or smart), but we stood next to each other at band practice and he and his friend were HILARIOUS. I had yet to meet a guy who made me laugh so hard I cried, like every ten minutes. Boys my age were sooo immature. I loved hanging out with him and the crush just crept up on me. I kept it to myself for about a week, but finally told my BFF. She probably gave it a good five days before telling someone else who eventually told him. I was mortified when I found out he knew and still had to stand next to him at practice every day for another month. The next time I saw him, he put me in a headlock and told me I was cute, in the most condescending way. Crush officially over.

I probably had a new crush every few months throughout high school. I mean, I kinda still do! But I was smart enough to know that I couldn't act on all of them (out of my league, wrong circle of friends, a friend's current crush or ex-boyfriend, a butt rocker, etc). I'm sure there were a bunch that I kept to myself, especially after that incident! Then again, you kinda need the guy to know so you have a starting point, right?

Did you date someone from your school?
I was a kind of a late bloomer. I dated two guys freshman year, but I'm using that word very loosely. No date ever took place and there was no actual relationship. I talked on the phone with one guy every single night for three months, but we barely spoke at school, mostly because he was a grade below me. Gasp! The other guy was a summer fling, but he didn't go to my school. Sophomore and the beginning of junior year, I had a couple random make outs and some group dates, but those don't really count. Then I had the same boyfriend most of junior and senior years.

Who did you go to the prom with?
I didn't! My boyfriend broke up with me a few weeks before prom. You can read about it here.

Is there something you wanted to do in high school but never did?
I should have got my driver's license. I got in a car accident and totaled our family minivan when I had my permit and was terrified to drive after that. Not because the accident was scary (it was in a parking lot), but because I was embarrassed and lost my confidence and just didn't want any part of it. I dropped out of driver's ed and my boyfriend drove me everywhere. It would have been nice to have after our breakup though, because I was a senior who had to take the bus to school for the last few weeks. Awkward.

Did you participate in any school plays?
Nope. Unfortunately for me, I have zero talent.

What sports or clubs did you belong to?
Band, leadership, Leo Club and Peace Club (which was about the environment, not peace. It's an acronym for something, but I can't remember). I also played fastpitch, very terribly, freshman year.

Did you drive to school?
No car! No licence! My boyfriend, who lived right next to the school and should have just walked, drove ten minutes in the opposite direction to pick me up every morning. He also dropped my brother and sister off at the middle school on our way. Awww...

Do you remember the fight song?
I do! I can sing it and play it on a clarinet, piano, and drums. Very poorly on the drums, since I really never learned how, but I can do it. I practice with pencils. 

Did you have an after school job?
No, but I babysat for the same family every Saturday night from 5:00-10:00 so they could go to dinner and a movie. If I didn't say I couldn't make it, it was implied that I'd be there. My sister took over in the middle of my junior year when Saturday nights became important to me.

Did you ever skip school?
Once. My boyfriend stayed home sick one day, so I had my friend call the school from the payphone, pretending to be my dad, saying he was picking me up early for a doctor appointment. I left school at lunch and spent the rest of the day at his house. I thought I was in the clear, but the school called my dad the following day to let them know that I forgot to bring a note in with me that morning. It was my first time skipping school, I didn't know the rules! My dad told them he didn't know about my appointment, and that my mom probably picked me up. When the school called my mom to verify, I was busted. My parents weren't that mad that I skipped, but pissed that I made them look like idiots.

What did you do on Friday nights?
I was a band geek so my life revolved around sports. Football games in the fall, basketball games in the winter, and marching band practice every Monday, Wednesday and Friday in the spring and fall.

Did you have a nickname in high school?
My brother and sister were clever little brats and called me Christiner Wiener. They eventually dropped my actual name and my family and friends close to my family just called me Wiener. In college, a friend changed it to "Wiena" because that made more sense to him. He also sort of said it like "Feeny" from Boy Meets World too. Ha!

Almost all my friends in high school called me "Christ." spelled with a period at the end, so it wouldn't be confused with the pronunciation of Jesus Christ. Say it with me: crissed. This is because my two BFFs and I went through a phase freshman year where we shortened just about every single word we said. We were saying totes, jelly, def, perf, and obvs before any of you! Honestly, we shortened any word we could, usually at the end of a sentence. "Open that wind." (window) "Are you watching 90?" (90210) "Where's your history home?" (homework) It was ridic. All three of our names could be shortened down to make another name, like mine would be Chris, but we were weird and that wouldn't do. So Christ. it was and it stuck until about a year after high school, when I drifted away from the majority of my high school friends. I have an ex-boyfriend who still addresses me that way. I recently told him that he's the only one who still calls me that and he said I'll never be a "Christina" to him. It's a long name. I don't blame him.

What was your most embarrassing moment?
Nothing really sticks out. I didn't mind public speaking, I never fell, I don't have any period stories, and I didn't have a public argument or breakdown. I'm sure I felt like I had hundreds of humiliating moments while I was in school, but I guess nothing traumatized me. Or maybe they're all repressed memories...?

What were your favorite bands, TV shows and movies?
MUSIC: No Doubt, Bush, Hole, Weezer, Sublime, Jewel, Everclear, Better Than Ezra, Garbage, The Cranberries, Sponge, Poe. TV: Beverly Hills, 90210, My So-Called Life, ER, Seinfeld, Friends, Mad About You, Newsradio, Roseanne, Saturday Night Live. MOVIES: Clueless, Empire Records, Romeo + Juliet, Scream, Forrest Gump, The Lion King, Speed, Romy and Michele's High School Reunion. 

Do you still talk to people from school?
Does Facebook count? I would say at least twenty of my friends from high school are still IRL friends now. That's probably not great, is it?

If you could go back and do it again, would you?
Maybe. Not because it was the best time of my life (I had much more fun in college), but because it was so nice to be dependent on my parents and not worry about jobs, bills, cars, houses, health, and raising my own kids. The youth really is wasted on the young! But I'd have to go back to the '90s. Kids these days are crazy.

Then there was a portion of the questionnaire that asked what you're up to now. You know, where do you work, where have you traveled, what are your hobbies, what are your greatest accomplishments, blah, blah, blah, but that's boring. Feel free to do this too! I love reading this stuff.