Thursday, July 26, 2018

Wandering Through The Shelves: TV Edition-Spies

It is almost the end of July...July! Holy Cucumbers Batman...where is this year going? We are in the midst of a heat wave which I hate and, being in Canada, it is construction season. This has nothing to do with this week's topic unless we realize that spies can be cool as cucumbers..far stretch I know. I still have to see a single episode of It Takes a Thief with Robert, I did not push my wife off the boat, Wagner and The Man From U.N.C.L.E. starring Robert Vaughan and David McCallum so they are not on my list. Wandering Through The Shelves will have a list of the film nuts participating this week and it will be fun to see which shows they choose because there are quite a few. Here are my 3 plus 1...

1. THE AVENGERS-1961-1969

Debonair Steed is partnered with vivacious va-va-vooms from Catherine Gale(Ms. Pussy Galore, Honor Blackman, Mrs. Emma Peel (the best-Diana Rigg and her funky outfits) and Tara King (played by Linda Thorson). They must subdue the evil-doers of the world with his trusty umbrella and the ladies' brand of judo/kung-fu. It is high camp at its coolest and most chique with very odd villains. I loved this show and wanted to be Ms. Emma Peel. I think my brother licked the screen whenever Mrs. Peel came on in her onesy cutout pleather outfit complete with a sexy watch chain.


I would not miss one episode of this series that starred Kate Jackson as a suburban single mom, with her own mom and 2 kids, who happens along at the right..or wrong time helping out an agent played by Bruce Boxleitner. He is suave and dangerous and she is ...not, but somehow she has a knack for being a spy and being able to help out at the right time. Of course, it was also a romantic will they or won't they shag which was the in thing to do at that time. This was a fun, comedic show that one enjoyed and never took seriously. I wish it would come back on so I could watch it again.

3. COUNTERSTRIKE-1990-1993

A Canadian show that I watched because Christopher Plummer starred in it before he re-found his fame. Plummer stars as a billionaire industrialist who watched as his wife was kidnapped and murdered by terrorists. He sets up shop to stop terrorists by hiring a small but elite team to nab these, bad guys, before any harm can be done. The team is led by a Scotland Yard operative, with a U.S. mercenary and a jewel thief/con artist and, together, infiltrate and destroy the evil doers. It was well done overall with the themes taken from the headlines of the day.


4. GET SMART-1965-1970

I love this stupid show that I think is stupidly brilliant since many episodes were written by Mel Brooks and Buck Henry. This bumbling detective is played by Don Adams who seems to be a composite of James Bond, Inspector Clouseau and Joe Friday from Dragnet. He is a total idiot who gets himself into hot water only for Agent 99 (not 69 as the censors would not allow that number) to rescue him and save the day. Of course he got most of the credit and Agent 99 let him and she even married him! This was a clever comedy with much slaptick and gadgets (not Inspector Gadget) like his shoe that always foiled Kaos's plans for know...Putin. more...

5. MI5-2002-2011

My hubby found this show on PBS and we became hooked! It is an English show without the dashing good looks and fancy suits that the U.S. usually creates, but a well-written, edge of your seat program that takes you on a roller coaster ride of intrigue outside and inside the office. It is an excellent, well-acted show with intricate plotlines. There is no way one can create a card while watching this show because you either lose the plot or you end up with glue all over your hand while sitting watching the show and not what you are gluing.

What 3..or 5 shows would you pick?

Tuesday, July 24, 2018

A Couple of Cards

I am trying to get my mojo in gear but I think Dr. Evil syphoned it out  so I must go looking for it. I had a weekend of not talking to anyone except my hubby and 4 phone calls which was great. I had to create another sympathy card since someone in Credit Counselling land lost their father. The other card is for my Hubby's Aunt which I hope she will like. So here we go..

the cuddlebug, leaf punch, stamps, cardstock. stickles.

Crafty Creations-Anything Goes
Simon Says-Use a die or punch

This is for the lady who lost her dad so I kept the colours soft and tried to make it feminine but something a man might like. I took a folder with the embossed design, placed the paper on it and  put it through the cuddlebug to imprint the design. I took a light green scrap paper and punched out a number of leaves. I glued the white cardstock onto the embossed design, glued 4 leafs down and used pop up dots for the other 4. I stamped the bird and flowers plus the saying and embossed it with 2 different powders. A dark green for the saying and  a pearl green for the others.I finished it off with some light green stickles to create a border.

sizzex machione, cuddlebug machine, die cut oval piece, gamsol colours, birdie stamp, silver ribbon, blue marker, border stickers.

Dream Valley-Bright & Beautiful
Color Throwdown-Greek blue, sky blue and grey-I'm too late!

Who knew? Here is some blue:). I used my sizzex to cut out the oval piece and put it through the cuddlebug to emboss the areas. One can use the Sizzex for all things but I like using the cuddlebug for the embossing part. I stamped and embossed the bird in white on white scrap paper, cut out an oval from the scrap white paper and rubbed on blue distress ink. The image appears since the colour doesn't stick to the embossed part. I adhered it to the blue filigree which, in turn was glued onto the silver/grey base. I took some white cardstock to create the card and then just scribbled 2 blue colours from the Gamsol prisma colour pencils around the edges. Everything was placed together with the sticker borders, I painted in blue, stuck on each corner.

It is hot and sticky and I don't mean hot crossed buns! I can't wait for cooler non-humid days.

Thursday, July 19, 2018

Thursday Movie Picks- Bad Parents

It has been an adventurous and busy 2 weeks but I am least physically, mentally on the other hand....:) So this week, at Wandering Through The Shelves, it’s about Bad Parents and I am finding this week tough maybe because I had great parents. My hubby, on the other hand, had a disgusting father so I tried to channel through my hubby. Let’s hope I picked the right movies, but I think I did.


I saw this many years ago and did snicker a bit because it’s pretty blatant with the stereotype of Asian people. The film was directed by D.W. Griffith who was Southern with a fond look at the old ways of the South. The film stars his muse, Lillian Gish, who never wavered in her loyalty for this man, as an abused daughter of a low life parent, played by Donald Crisp. He routinely beats her and abuses her mentally as well. One particular day, she faints from hunger. Enter an opium addicted Chinese man, played by Richard Barthlemess, who works at a Chinese store (he is often referred to, lovingly I might add, as Chinky, by Ms. Gish's character), who finds her and takes her to his place to help her heal. He falls in love with her and she has affection for him by making herself smile-placing her fingers on each end of her mouth to make an upward grin. Despite the obvious dated racism, it is a tender love story that can never be and Donald Crisp is excellent as the brutal father.

2. SYBIL-1976

Yes, this is a TV Miniseries but this made such an impression on me that I had to include it. It placed Sally Field on the map as a serious actress which helped her get get Norma Rae etc... She plays Sybil, a young woman with many split personalities who finally gets the help from a psychiatrist played by Joanne Woodward. Sybil’s mother, to say the least, is one of the worst human beings who abused her daughter in horrendous ways. The only way Sybil could deal with the disgusting abuse was to break into different personalities. When she tied her daughter onto the kitchen table, the green walls stuck with me and made me never to want any green in the kitchen. A well acted, and written film that just leaves you in stunned silence. Sally Field gave a tour de force performance and is a must see.


Joan Crawford was a good actress and a lousy human being overall. She had many “querks” to say the least, abusing her husbands, creating mayhem on the set especially if she felt she was being upstaged by another actress (read about Mercedes McCambridge). She was well known to have what we now called OCD, she cleaned her hands until they were almost raw and, if a hotel suite was not to her exact cleanliness, she would get down on her hands and knees and scrub the floors herself. She never had her own children ( the theory ranges from an inability to have kids due to a botched abortion to her not wanting to ruin her figure). She adopted Christina, a boy and the “twins” even though they were not twins at all. She was given a “Mother of the Year” award which makes me laugh and shake my head since she was a horrible mother. This film is based on a book written by Christina and it’s is one book that I tend to believe actually happened since I have read so many other books on this actress. It is a campy film with an over the top performance by Faye Dunaway and everyone knows about the hanger scene. I recommend the movie even if it is quite campy but it is highly entertaining. Despite all the negative things known about Crawford, one thing that came to light after she died, was that she paid for a hospital room in Texas, I believe, for people who were too poor to afford medical stay. She paid for it all without anyone knowing which is no small feat for a woman who loved the attention of her fans.

What films would you choose?

Wednesday, July 18, 2018

Vancouver Trip...Part 1

First off, there is no way I can write about this in just one brief post....that would be like asking the Pope to loosen up and dance the Samba on Dancing With The Stars. I can almost picture him in the colourful sleeves full of glitter shaking his hips.....ughh, no, let’s not go there. I left July 1st, Canada Day with Westjet which was quite good. I had some jet lag since they are 3 hrs behind but I had a great first day in Vancouver, actually New Westminster where they live. I was looking forward to being with one of my dearest friends, Jeff (not my ex-Jeff) and his husband Kain plus seeing the Rockies. I loved my time with them, I loved the scenery, I loved the transit system which is so much better than the Niagara Region (which truly sucks) and I loved the weather. While my hubby had to deal with 36 to 40C weather plus humidity, I was dealing with glorious temps of 20 to 22C and no humidity.  On with the show....

My friend, Jeff lives in New Westminster and, when he gets off the skytrain, he can either take the shuttle or he can have a beautiful walk home along the Fraser River. There are many condos lining this whole area with flowers, fountains and everyone seems to own a dog. It really is nice. In the distance is a train bridge which is still in operation. He also walks past this spooky island which was home to smallpox victims. They would be sent to this island and not heard from again so this island is reputed to be haunted which I found cool. I wish I could get to this island but, alas, it is prohibited.

On Monday, July 2nd, we ventured to Granville island which is full of shops, galleries and restaurants. It used to be mainly industry and there still is one in operation as you see here. To make the silos look nicer, an artist was hired to paint them up. I found a stamp store and, needless to say, my brain went on autopilot as I bought some nifty stuff. There is a great market on the island with fresh fruit, fish, etc... We ended up sitting down in a square, listening to this musician playing an electric mandolin. I ended up buying one of his CD's.

We took a shuttle across the water and walked along the shore to this nifty sculpture which was supposed to be temporary but became such a hit that these group of nuts, not Jeff and me,  were left. Each have their own goofy expression which does include us.

We took an hour bus ride to the village of Steveston which was a wonderful experience, walking along the water where the Fraser opens up to the ocean. It is a historic site since fisherman used to earn a living here and we could walk in and out of these small homes to catch a glimpse of their way of life. Many Chinese and Japanese people lived here as well and the outdoor museum touched on the racism and the internment of the Japanese during WW2. We ended up having authentic sushi in a Japanese restaurant which I enjoyed. I did a lot of walking but, with my walking poles, I was able to enjoy these many walks. Tomorrow, the trip into the Rockies!

I call these the foothills into the Rockies and it was so visually striking that I took tons of pictures. My friend is the tour director and ventures into this area every week with a new load of chickens, er, um, I mean tourists. I clucked my way on board and sat next to Jeff as he described many interesting tidbits as we drove on the Coquihalla highway made famous by the TV show Highway Through Hell.  When Jeff tried to quiz me on certain information he talked about, I got a royal fail because, unfortunately, I decided to catch some flies while sitting on the bus and fell right to sleep on occasion.


I do need all the hope I can get especially when I take my first selfie! If I was in Hollywood I would have those teeth all of them have, my nose would be shrunk and I would look like a freak...ok, so I do look a bit freaky but it's all me:) Hope is famous for all the woodcarving done by chainsaws so here are a couple of artistic displays...

This was a short pitstop but I enjoyed looking around before heading onward to catch more flies:)

The turtle looks like he is ready to catch some flies as well:). We stopped at a lovely campground area called the Painted Turtle because of those lovely turtles and had a quick lunch and enjoyed the views before we drove on....Jeff is ready to deal with a major issue soon.

This evening stay was unplanned because there was a major accident on the highway near the BC/Alberta boarder resulting in 2 people dying. A semi truck swerved to avoid the crash but ended up in the ditch-he was ok. Jeff had to contact his boss to find accommodations for 50 people and needed 41 rooms! He handled it like a true pro, remained calm, and we ended up at this ski lodge with many small cabins with the softest beds, featherthicks and feather pillows-I never slept so well. We walked along a pond and ate wild blueberries that were such a bright blue and tasted great. We were making sure no bears were thinking the same thing. We were supposed to be in Jasper to pick up more people but that will have to wait for the next day....

Lengthy post but I hope you enjoyed Part 1 of my adventure into the Rockies. By the way, the first picture is of Mount Robson which is the highest point in the Rockies.

Thursday, July 12, 2018

Thursday Movie Picks-Characters Magically Aging Up or Down

I am back from Vancouver but still off work which is where I can post my pictures and youtube videos. I am doing this quickly from work on June 29th! I should be home by now but late as always. Check out Wandering Through The Shelves to see everyone else's picks. Who feels young one day and old the next? I can relate and so can my 3 here...


I love Terry Gilliam and here is another great film by this former Monty Python nut. Baron Munchausen is an actor, so we think, trying to put on a show during a bombing by the Turks. He is a teller of tales and, with the help of a little girl, he rounds up his old gang to make sure the Turks don't win. It is an elaborate but wonderful fairy tale that takes you to space where Robin Williams plays a king who is nuts about his Queen down to the stomach of a whale and to Hades's quarters. The visuals are stunning and I love it how we see Munchausen age when he is close to giving up but becomes youthful when he finds hope.


I may have chosen this before but I was in a bit of a quandary this week so it is my choice again and why not? Once again, the visuals are amazing and I didn't find it frightening but there are some gross scenes which didn't bother me as it worked for the film. I found it a great retelling of this well-known take about Dracula but it brings a love story along with reincarnation into the story and I feel it works very well. Dracula is seen first as very old but he regains his youth by..well, you know, sucking the life out of people. He is on a journey to find Nina who looks like his long lost wife. Her Fiancee, Johnathan Harker is kept at the castle by the 3 beguiling bloodsuckers but he does escape. Not on;y does Dracul age up and down but Harker's hair goes from grey to black depending on who is winning. Gary Oldman deserved an oscar nomination if not a win for this.


This stars Brad Pitt as Benjamin who is born old...literally and as time passes he grows younger. It seems to be somehow connected to a clock but we learn about his life as he is raised by an African American who loves him and calls him her own. When he is old he meets a young girl and they become friends. When he leaves for adventure and comes home a man, he meets up with her again and they meet at a time when both are at the right age. I found it a strange film, not without faults but the acting is great and the story stick with me and made me think about Alzheimers and how, I felt, this movie seems to hint at this illness but from a different angle.

Which ones would you choose? Oh if there are any spelling/grammar errors, I am writing this in haste..forgive moi

Thursday, July 5, 2018

Thursday Movie Picks- Long Awaited Sequels

This was a tough week for me to come up with long awaited sequels because my mind went blank...typical. Let’s see what the others have chosen if you head on over to Wandering Through The Shelves we can find out. Here are my 3....


I was sooooo looking forward to this film and then I watched it. The special effects, cinematography and interior design are amazing (my favourite word) the acting was good except for the kid, who truly sucked, but this film was just not that great ...sorry. So Q-Tip, played by Liam Neeson is a Jedi Knight with an apprentice, Obi Wan Kenobi and Q-Tip sees-a young kid and believes he is the saviour. In between this they must escort Queen Armadillo to some senator meeting or something like that and they pick up a dumb ass lizard, Jar Jar Binks. The evil force is building and the great Death Maul is trying to kill the kid and the rest. There is unrest in the force  so stay tuned... My favourite scene is the final fight scene with Darth Maul, Obi and Q-Tip. The sword, um, lightsabre fight scene with that spectacular music by John Williams is worth watching.


Now this is a sequel! It is all about Star Wars but this time it is way after the victory by the rebel forces. It starts with a tough gal on the planet where Luke Skywalker grew up. She finds the falcon and a droid that knows the whereabouts of Luke who disappeared. There is also unrest in the force and we meet up with Princess Leia and Han Solo and good ole Chewie. They had a child (Leia and Han not Leia and Chewie or Han and Chewie for that matter), an ugly one with huge lips who is an entitled, self-absorbed brat with parent issues who loves the dark side. This is a great sequel worth the wait.


The Mad Max films were from the 1980’s and I was never a big follower of these films so I was not much into this film but I’m glad I watched this movie. It is whack-a-doodle flick with Mad Max captured but escaping with baldie Charlize Theron and some babes in white dresses. The lord wants his concubines back and sends out his army of freaks along with a heavy metal band that play f-up music. I had to laugh at the bald freak with the guitar and the other nuts going after the gals, Charlize and Max. It is a gritty, dirty film that is not that uplifting which is not one of my favourite motifs, but I still think it's a good film and better than the originals.

What are your 3?..