Wednesday, May 22, 2024

For Mom

 


My mom, I miss her so much. Just about every person who met her thought she was just great. When my mom lived adjacent to a convenient store, she would talk to the kids who worked there and one kid was thinking of not going on in his education but, later, a woman knocked on my mom’s door and she thanked my mom because her son decided to stay in school because of what my mom said. I could talk to her about anything and she was there for me and rarely judged. Now, mind you, she was no saint, she did favour my brother, without her really knowing this. When I was a kid, a school trip went to Marineland and I bought this little bobblehead seal and was so happy that she had it always on her desk because she almost always kept what my brother made or bought her. When my mom got dementia she was wanting to give everything to my brother and I kept reminding her what she told me when her mind was sound. She told me the seal would go to Baron and I asked why. She said because Baron bought that for her but when I told her it was I who bought it, she looked at it and said, “ oh, well, you can throw it out then”. I just looked at her, shaking my head. Now, don’t get me wrong, she bought me a beautiful dress for my birthday( just don’t tell your brother that she spent so much on me), she often told me how proud she was of me and that she was so very thankful that I was with her.

 She loved her classical music with Beethoven being her favourite ( the 7th Symphony, her favourite of his) but she loved folk music and she loved to dance! In fact she once won a dance contest when she still lived in Germany ( she said it was for a dance similar to the one you see in “The Sound Of Music”). She loved to sing and was in the choir when she was a kid. She was told she could have a career in singing but the war and, later, her smoking, killed that chance. Still, she sang up until the day she died. Many young people loved that she would dance to many rock songs. She couldn’t listen to it, as her shoulders would shudder in discontent ( she could be such a ham) but the last wedding she went to, she was quite famous because she danced to AC/DC with many of the bride and groom’s friends asking who she was and that they thought she was cool. I guess she was and she was my mom. I am adding this to the mom special over at Monday Music Moves Me

1. CATCH A FALLING STAR SUNG BY PERRY COMO-1957


Many, many years later, she asked me why she loves the music from the 50s now and  I told her that was her fun time when she was in her 20s and felt the most free despite her many responsibilities. She really loved this song and found it enchanting. In fact, the day she died, January 15, 2018, a month shy of her 90th birthday, the nurses and PSW’s told me she was singing this song in the dining room at lunch. After lunch, she went to go for a sleep and never woke up. What a nice way to go actually.

2. A TYPICAL LANDLER PLAYED ON THE ZITHER BY ANTON KARAS-DATE UNKNOWN


My mom, and I, love the zither and Anton Karas made it world renown after he became famous with The Third Man Theme. I am certain this probably comes from the 1950s or 60s and the Landler ( there should be 2 dots over the “a”) is a typical song(s) stemming from as far back as the 1600s. She knew many of these songs and loved them.

3. WOLGALIED WITH ANDRE RIEU-2018


This is from a Frank Lehar opera about a soldier who stands beside the banks of the Volga and became famous for soldiers in WW2 on the German and Russian side. My mom, a survivor of WW2 and the Russian takeover, suffered from PTSD but never got treatment for it. She could talk to my dad, a veteran of WW2 who fought with the Canadian army and was part of the liberation of Holland. They met many years later, in 1959, and they could talk about what they experienced. My mom was a huge believer in the veterans no matter what side. She felt a strong kinship to the allied veterans and did lose 2 brothers during the war, one was 1 year old and the other, 19. She was part of the resistance movement thinking it great fun placing the TNT under the bridges to prevent the German army from advancing. Any song belonging to the veteran, she held close to her heart. 

Have to add this..

BACK IN BLACK SUNG BY AC/DC-1980


This is one of the song my mom danced to at the last wedding she went to. We both danced to this and she was the rock star because most people her age were not dancing to this…only her and loving every moment. She couldn’t listen to the song but dance? Yup!

What songs did your mom love?

Monday, May 20, 2024

Enjoyed My Day

 


Christmas Card Throwdown- Scandinavian 


Dream Valley- For a Man or Boy

Crafty Animals- Anything Goes 

I took a stencil and, using a stencil brush, brushed in red colour from a dye ink pad onto white cardstock. I repeated the design on the bottom and then, stamped the reindeer in red and heat embossed it in red sparkle. I added the crystals and, voila!


Fab N' Funky- For A baby, child or teen
Sparkles Christmas- use Ribbon or Twine

I have a bunch of wooden designs and took the snowman and sprayed it with distress blue spray. I had this leftover card stock cut out like a frame. I placed silver dye ink on the Embossing folder and embossed this through my cuddlebug. I put blue pearl Embossing powder down and heat embossed it to get a nice Sheen. I glued a sparkle paper under the framed blue cardstock and added the snowman after I placed the orange twine around its neck as a scarf. I used black ink pen to make the eyes and mouth. Finally, I stamped the letters for "Merry Christmas" coloured them with my tombow markers, fussy cut them out and put pop up dots on the back to adhere it to the card. I thought of this for my friend’s 2 girls who are teens..well, one of them and I think it works. What do you think?

I hope everyone had a nice weekend  we had our Victoria Day weekend and it was quite nice. 


Thursday, May 16, 2024

Thursday Film Picks-Sacrificing Moms

 

My mom would have given her life for me and my brother. She felt we were her biggest accomplishments ( thankfully, not disappointments). Since Mother's Day just past, I thought I would talk about 3 films where mom did her all for her ungrateful..er scratch that, for her sweet children. Here are my 3...

1. STELLA DALLAS- 1937

I may have spoken about this film before but it's a great film starring Barbara Stanwyck as a woman, from the wrong side of the tracks, who marries a rich guy and has a daughter. As soon as she has the daughter, her love goes to this baby even though she didn't show much aptitude for anything before. She makes sure her daughter has the best and, when she realizes her daughter is embarrassed by her mom's classlessness, she makes sure to stay out of the picture. It's very well acted but I will say, even when I saw this as a kid, I thought her daughter was a bit of a jerk, or jerkess. 

2. JOHNNY BELINDA-1948

This is a favourite film of mine starring Jane Wyman ( the first Mrs. Reagan) as a deaf mute living on a farm with her dad and Aunt. Along comes this kindly Dr who realizes that she has intelligence but must cut through the blindspot of the dad and aunt. When they notice that she can talk through sign language, they are overjoyed until she is raped by the local thug. No matter, she loves her baby and will do everything she can to protect her baby. It is a touching and sweet film despite the violent part but, thankfully, they don't show anything( unlike today where they feel they have to show this). I love this movie and thought the acting was excellent.

3. IMITATION OF LIFE-1959

Lana Turner plays a somewhat ok mom who loves her ambition of being an actress over being a mom or 50s housewife( I am with her on the latter). She meets up with Juanita Moore, a black lady with her own daughter who could pass for white. This beautiful mom cares for both girls and even the other mom living with Lana and caring for everyone. We follow the ups and downs of the 2 moms and the daughters. When the daughter from Juanita does not want to be known as black and doesn't want anyone to know her mom. Her mom, devastated, accepts what her daughter wants and sacrifices everything for the love of her ungrateful bitch of a daughter. Sorry, too harsh? This is a lavish soapy directed by Douglas Sirk known for these films and the lush style. I still need to see the 1934 original with Claudette Colbert and Louise Beavers which I will, one day. Oh, this film came out around the same time that Lana’s 14 yr old daughter was on trial for the stabbing death of Lana’s mafia boyfriend. The rumour is that Lana stabbed her boyfriend but her daughter took the rap declaring she was protecting her mom. WHO knows what is true except he was dead…good riddance.

What film can you think of that represents a sacrificing mom?

Wednesday, May 15, 2024

Which Won The Oscar 1947

 


The year is 1947 and, not controversial at the time, today 2 of these songs would not ever make it on the soundtrack. It’s sad because I actually like both but I am not known to be politically correct so let’s see if you can guess who won the Oscar, which was nominated and which came up nil. I’m joining Monday Music Moves Me over at Cathy’s blog, Curious As A Cathy.

1. ZIP-A-DEE-DOO-DAH SUNG BY JAMES BASKETT


This song was written by Allie Wrubel with lyrics by Ray Gilbert for the film, “Song Of The South” and was a big Disney hit that you heard on the TV Show and in all the theme parks because it’s supposed to be a happy song but now it is very controversial. It’s considered racist and an Uncle Tom feel. I guess this man, who sang this song, is happy even though he was a former slave. You know, I still have not seen this film but plan to. Sadly, James Baskett died after making this film at only age 44. He suffered from diabetes and heart problems. Young Johnny is played by Bobby Driscoll who ended up hooked on drugs and died from a drug overdose at 31. He was buried in a paper's grave. 

2. PASS THE PEACE PIPE SUNG BY JOAN MCCRACKEN


This song is from the film, " Good News" about kids in school( I danced like this, didn't we all?). The song was written by Ralph Blane, Hugh Martin and Roger Edens and sung and danced by the inimitable Joan McCracken and dance troupe. I'm certain kids today would be incensed by the Indian musical references which is how the white folks thought the Indians sounded. Anyhoo, it's a lot of fun and a rare time to see this actress who died of diabetes at age 44. She was the wife of Bob Fosse who helped him in his career and she helped Shirley MacLaine too. 

3. CHIQUITA BANANA SUNG BY XAVIER CUGAT


We must have heard this song in many commercials for bananas but it actually wad in the film, "This Time For Keeps". Lina Rimay sang the song but it became more famous when Carmen Miranda sings it. I always liked this song.

So...which one won the Oscar, which was nominated and which came up zilch?


I can't resist....

Thursday, May 9, 2024

Best Picture of 1988

 


I travel across the years and pick an Oscar category and decide which or who should have won the Oscar instead of the one who did. 1988 was a big year because that was the year my dad died (on April 30th) but also the summer when I had a lot of fun with my 2 best friends. In between the sorrow and the frolic, I saw quite a few films although I have not seen all …unlike Joel who seems to have had the ability to see so many 😁. I will tell you which won, which I think should have won and one that was nominated. I am certain many will disagree and that’s aok in my book.

1. THE UNBEARABLE LIGHTNESS OF BEING


This is one sensual film but classy unlike Poor Things which was anything but. This film stars Daniel, “be still my heart”, Day Lewis as a surgeon in, what used to be known as, Czechoslovakia, who is quite a womanizer but finds a soul mate in the sensual Lena Olin until he meets a naive Juliette Binoche. He brings Juliet to meet Lena and is surprised at how well the 2 gals get along. Juliet takes many photos especially during the uprising of 1968 where many people are killed when Russian tanks drive in and squelch the uprising. It is beautifully shot by Sven Nykvist who was nominated for an Oscar. I think Lena deserved an Oscar nomination for best supporting but the film was not nominated at all and I would have chosen this as best picture because I love it. It is not for everyone because it is a character study, a remark on the political times all set against a backdrop of the artisticness that this film captures. I would have had the Melagro Beanfield War nominated as well as A Fish Called Wanda and The Last Temptation of Christ.

2. RAIN MAN


I will be honest, I still have to see this movie so, yes, I know, can I truly say this should not have won the Best Picture Oscar? The answer is …yes. I have seen parts of the movie but never from the beginning and, although it is well acted, especially by Dustin Hoffman, who also won Best Actor, I just found this film typical with the rah rah at the end. Tom Cruise plays a huckster who finds out his dad died and left his $3 million fortune to the mental health facility where his much older brother resides. He had no idea he had a brother never mind one who is an autistic savant. He takes his brother out of the facility hoping to get a hold of the money especially when he finds out that his brother can add up numbers…boy can he add them up! On their road trip, they learn about each other and grow from there…ok..sure. It’s good but hardly great.

3. DANGEROUS LIASONS


This is a remake of a French film but I have only seen this version and thought it was quite good and vicious. During the Royal courts, we see Glenn Close and John Malcovich as 2 scheming, bored a-holes who like to ruin peoples’ lives for sport. We see how they manipulate people and toy with their lives but when John develops true feelings for the upstanding and sweet Michelle Pfeiffer, their plans start imploding. This is well acted with a great story, great costumes and interior design. 

Just so you know, the other films that were nominated were, Working Girl, The Accidental Tourist, and Mississippi Burning. My choice was not even nominated which still annoys me. Would you have chosen Rain Man or one of the other 4 or another film  that wasn’t even nominated?

Wednesday, May 8, 2024

Latin Music Cha Cha Cha

 


Monday Music Moves Me is going Latin! This is one fun challenge that I may keep doing next week. I love Latin music because it’s so infectious and fun plus just beautiful. Cathy over at Curious As A Cathy, has showcased her Latin music plus she has the links to everyone who has joined in on the fun. 

1. CHICA CHICA BOOM CHIC SUNG BY CARMEN MIRANDA AND DON AMECHE-1941


This song was written by Harry Warren and Mack Gordon  which is from  the 1941 film, “ That Night In Rio”  sung by the Brazilian Bombshell, Carmen Miranda. During the 1940s, Hollywood  fell in love with everything Latin. Many musicals, starring Betty Grable, Don Ameche, Tyrone Power etc..would take place, either in Mexico or Rio and you could count on Carmen Miranda and her tutti frutti hat to give it her all in some great singing wearing very outlandish outfits. She was over the top but she was famous and, at one point, the highest paid woman in the U. S. Sadly, she died at 47 from a heart attack but I always smile when I see a Chiquita banana.

2. BRAZIL PERFORMED BY XAVIER CUGAT-1955


This is a famous piece of music written by Ary Barroso in 1931. There are so many renditions of this song that it’s hard to know which one to pick but Xavier Cugat was the first name that came into my head ( call me strange) so I looked to see if he did a version and he did! I always found this man gentle in my eyes.

3. GRANADA SUNG BY DESI ARNAZ -1953


I have to showcase Desi and could have gone with his signature tune, “Babaloo”  but I really loved when he sang this famous song, written by Augustin Lara in 1932. In fact, I find his rendition one of the best and find it enchanting.

Which Latin songs can you think of. Have you ever danced the Tango?

Tuesday, May 7, 2024

Star Of The Month: Glenn Ford

 


GLENN FORD

BIRTH: May 1, 1916

DEATH: August 30, 2006

AGED: 90 yrs

DIED FROM: old age but had years of issues with circulation issues, heart attack and a series of strokes

REAL NAME: Gwyllyn Ford

MARRIED: 4 times- Eleanor Powell ( great dancer and star), Kathryn Hays, Cynthia Hayward, Jeanne Baus…all divorced. Eleanor gave up her film career for him to raise their son and make a home.

CHILDREN: 1 child, son.

AFFAIRS: SLUT Alert!! Rita Hayworth, Bette Davis, Barbara Stanwyck, Joan Crawford, Gene Tierney, Eva Gabor, Angie Dickinson, Judy Garland, Stella Stevens, Loretta Young, Suzanne Pleshette, Debbie Reynolds, Hope Lange, Marilyn Monroe( a one night stand) and sex star Liz Renay. In total about 146 actresses, Hayworth got pregnant and had an abortion since it would have destroyed their marriages ( hahahaa) and their careers.

OSCAR NOMINATIONS: Nil! 

TALENT: Aside from being a man whore, excellent horseman, quick on the draw with a gun, plumber, electrician and air conditioning fixer

KNOWN FOR: seducing everyone.  Keeping many women as friends, just not his wives. Taping his phone calls and making a diary of his conquests.

Who knew this young Canadian man would become a star during Hollywood’s golden age even if he didn’t hit the big time like John Wayne, James Stewart, Gary Cooper and his best friend, William Holden. He was still a big enough name to carry many a film and could play drama, western, comedy and  suspense with equal aplomb but almost always playing someone with integrity unlike his issue with sex..can we say sex addict anyone. When he expressed interest in being an actor, his dad suggested he study a back-up trade, just in case so he actually became a certified plumber, electrician and air-conditioning repairman and he would fix things for fun. He was also an expert horseman and was the best in drawing a gun, better than John Wayne, James Arness and many others. He missed out on World War 2 due to illness that ended up as pneumonia creating a lingering illness. This didn’t stop him during the Vietnam War where he  was part of the crew for combat training films and found himself in the demilitarized zone in the Mekong Delta where he dealt with enemy fire.  He also took up handgliding and liked this challenge but failed miserably when he tried to raise 140 leghorn chickens. When a fox appeared, eating his chickens, he stayed up with his rifle which was the final straw for the fancy people in California. The cops came and shut down his illegal chicken coop. From what I have read, his 5 times co-star and 40 year love affair ( off and on) with Rita Hayworth was the closest to true love to the point where they were “neighbours” with a gate adjoining their gardens and Ms. Hayworth could freely come and go.  They each had a picture of the other on their bed stand and when she died, from complications  Alzheimer’s disease, he was a pallbearer. When Ford died, his son found tapes that his dad made of his many, many conquests detailing the lovemaking etc.. but, he also taped his conversations he had with his many friends from Holden, Jimmy Stewart, John Wayne and Charlton Heston and many more. He learned from his former studio boss, Harry Cohn that taping might be a good idea so he started taping his, then, wife, Eleanor Powell to find out what she knew about all his dalliances. To say he was F&## up is an understatement but, many of  the gals still remained good friends with him, just not his wives.

FILMS

1. So Ends Our Night-1941

2. Gilda-1946

3. A Stolen Life-1946

4. An Affair In Trinidad-1952

5. The Big Heat-1953

6. Blackboard Jungle-1955

7. The Teahouse Of August Moon-1956

8. 3:10 To Yuma-1957

9. The Sheepman-1958

10. The Pocketful Of Mircles-1960

11. Experiment In Terror-1962

12. The Courtship of Eddie’s Father-1963