Monday, January 14, 2019

#MCUAlumniMovieWatch Update #2

Check out the original post here

Well, the summer ended up getting away from me and my binge watch had to take a back seat. Thankfully the holidays and the subsequent break allowed me to check off some more alumni. Again in no particular order:

*all images from IMDB

Christopher Robin-MCU Alumni: Hayley Atwell

Detroit-MCU Alumni: Anthony Mackie

Ghostbusters-MCU Alumni: Chris Hemsworth

Liberal Arts-MCU Alumni: Elizabeth Olsen

Prince Avalanche-MCU Alumni: Paul Rudd

Spider-Man Into The Spiderverse-MCU Alumni: Mahershala Ali

The Grinch-MCU Alumni: Benedict Cumberbatch

The West Wing-MCU Alumni: Clark Gregg

Unbreakable-MCU Alumni: Samuel L Jackson

Kong Skull Island-MCU Alumni: Tom Hiddleston, Samuel L Jackson, Brie Larson

Sing-MCU Alumni: Scarlett Johansson

Mama Mia! Here We Go Again-MCU Alumni: Stellan Skarsgard, Dominic Cooper

Total 12 productions, 11 new MCU alumni. I wasn't able to check off as many this time since there weren't many productions with multiple actors in it. And I also had several alumni repeats which don't add to the overall total.

Overall total (so far) 22 productions, 27 MCU Alumni. 

I hope to at least check off the rest of the original Avengers before Endgame comes out in April.

Wednesday, November 28, 2018

I'm Still Here!

Oh my! I haven't posted anything on here since....well we won't specify how long it's been ;-)

If you're subscribed to my YouTube channel, you've seen that I've been posted videos on at least some of what I've been up to. Including our family Alaskan cruise, a corgi race, and then my recent trip to Dallas.

Even my channel saw a slump in posting there for a while, due to some personal issues (which is for another post at another time). But the podcast has been going strong, so I hope you're keeping up with what we've been releasing.

I do hope that now my personal stuff is more in control, I can get back to blogging more. We'll see how I do finishing out the year, but it may just be that I pick up stronger when we get into 2019. Thanks for those who've stuck around!

sign that says I'm Still Here

Saturday, June 23, 2018

#MCUAlumniMovieWatch Update #1

Marvel Cinematic Universe

Check out the original post here

It's been almost two months since Avengers: Infinity War was released, and we're now slightly under two weeks from the release of the next movie in the MCU, Ant-Man and the Wasp.

I've slowly been cracking at watching as many movies with MCU alumni in them during my off time during what is a busy summer. Here's watch I've watched so far (in no particular order):

Tinker Tailor Soldier SpySherlock HolmesSherlock Holmes A Game of Shadows

Jurassic Park The Lost WorldJurassic Park IIIJurassic World Fallen Kingdom

Deadpool 2Ocean's 8Solo A Star Wars Story

Mama Mia! The Movie

*all images from IMDB

Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy-MCU Alumni: Toby Jones, Benedict Cumberbatch

Sherlock Holmes-MCU Alumni: Robert Downey Jr, Jude Law, Rachel McAdams

Sherlock Holmes Game of Shadows-MCU Alumni: Robert Downey Jr, Jude Law, Rachel McAdams

Jurassic Park The Lost World-MCU Alumni: Jeff Goldbum

Jurassic Park III-MCU Alumni: Sam Neill

Jurassic World Fallen Kingdom-MCU Alumni: Chris Pratt, Jeff Goldbum, Toby Jones

Deadpool 2-MCU Alumni: Josh Brolin

Ocean's 8-MCU Alumni: Cate Blanchett, Richard Armitage

Solo A Star Wars Story-MCU Alumni: Donald Glover, Paul Bettany, Jon Favreau

Mama Mia: Stellan Skarsgard, Dominic Cooper

16 MCU alumni so far over 10 movies, not bad. I still have a ways to go to check more off my list.

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

#MCUAlumniMovieWatch Suggestions Needed

Marvel Cinematic Universe

So if you're friends with me on Facebook, you've seen this post already (and the subsequent rather large comment section that followed). But as my list is far from complete, I decided to ask the interwebs for their suggestions.

The Original Post

So I've got this crazy idea. Before Infinity War this year, I rewatched all of the MCU films in release order. One a week starting at the beginning of the year.
Looking ahead to Avengers 4 next year, I could do the same thing BUT to change things up I thought it might be fun instead of watch other films that star members of the MCU. Think of it as a way to expand my cinematic horizons instead of watching the same movies over and over.
So what I need are YOUR recommendations of movies that star members of the MCU (Robert Downey Jr, Mark Ruffalo, etc.) I want to start compiling a list and then go from there.
I know I've got a lot of film aficionado friends, so lay it on me!

What I have so far.....

Hayley Atwell
-Christopher Robin
Dave Bautista
-Blade Runner 2049
Paul Bettany
-Kiss Kiss (Bang Bang)
-A Beautiful Mind
-Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World
-A Knight’s Tale
Chadwick Boseman
Josh Brolin
-No Country For Old Men
Don Cheadle
-Miles Ahead
Bradley Cooper
Benedict Cumberbatch
-The Fifth Estate
-Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy
-Third Star
Benicio Del Toro
-The Usual Suspects
Vin Diesel
-The Chronicles of Riddick
-The Iron Giant
Peter Dinklage
-The Boss
-Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri
Robert Downey Jr
-Sherlock Holmes
-Sherlock Holmes: A Game Of Shadows
-Due Date
Idris Elba
Chris Evans
Martin Freeman
-Hot Fuzz
Karen Gillan
-Jumanji Welcome To The Jungle
Clark Gregg
-500 Days of Summer
Danai Gurira
-All Eyez On Me
Chris Hemsworth
Tom Hiddleston
-I Saw The Light
Tom Holland
-The Edge Of Winter
Samuel L Jackson
-Pulp Fiction
Scarlett Johansson
-Lost In Translation
-Ghost World
Pom Klementieff
-Ingrid Goes West
Brie Larson
Anthony Mackie
Elizabeth Olsen
-Wind River
Gwyneth Paltrow
-The Talented Mr Ripley
-Shakespeare in Love
Chris Pratt
Jeremy Renner
Paul Rudd
Mark Ruffalo
Zoe Saldana
Sebastian Stan
Benedict Wong

So suggestions for the actors already listed? Anyone I'm missing (that you have a movie recommendation for). I wanna hear it!

A few disclaimers/notes: If you can suggest a movie that has multiple alumni in it, even better because that means I can check off more at once and save myself some time. Also, the suggested movie should be relatively easy to find (be it Netflix, Amazon, iTunes, etc).

Friday, April 13, 2018

Last Night Was Weird!

Last night, the hubby and I drove up to Wabash to see Weird Al during his 'Ridiculously Self-Indulgent, Ill-Advised Vanity Tour' The concert was at the Honeywell Center, which the Ford Theater reminded me of my high school auditorium.

This tour is unlike previous shows that I've seen Al do (this is my 5th time seeing him). But I knew that going in, as Al said when the tour was announced:

"By design, it has extremely limited appeal. Instead of doing festivals, fairs and arenas, we’ll be doing small, intimate theatres. Instead of putting on a big flashy production, we’ll be trying to go for something very informal and low-key… kind of an Unplugged/Storytellers vibe. Like we’re just hanging out, playing in your living room. So if you’ve really got your heart set on seeing fat suits and Segways and hearing all your favorite parodies… this probably isn’t the tour for you. Chances are we’ll be doing that kind of show again sometime in the future, just not THIS time." Weird Al

As a HUGE Weird Al fan (I did ask him out my prom after all), I had no problem with the lack of costumes and parodies. Granted some of the songs I knew better than others, but I still sung along the entire time. The set list is different every show, which makes sense considering how large his music catalog is, even once you take out the parodies*. The vibe was definitely more calm, unlike the more party atmosphere at previous shows. But everyone seemed to enjoy themselves. I saw lots of Hawaiian shirts.

Set list
Stop Forwarding That Crap To Me
Traffic Jam
Generic Blues
My Baby's In Love With Eddie Vedder
Good Enough For Now
Close But No Cigar
Airline Amy
One Of Those Days
I'm So Sick Of You
Don't Download This Song
I Remember Larry
She Never Told Me She Was A Mime
Christmas At Ground Zero
The Biggest Ball of Twine In Minnesota
Unplugged Medley: Eat It/I Lost On Jeopardy/Amish Paradise/Smells Like Nirvana/White & Nerdy/I Love Rocky Road/Like A Surgeon
Secret Never Before Heard Cover
The Saga Begins

*There's a spreadsheet on Reddit that is keeping track of every song that's been sung during the tour.

Emo Philips was a fun opening act (Al normally doesn't have an opening act so this in itself was unique). Chauncey and I made sure to watch UHF the night before. 

I wish I had a chance to see this tour again, just to see and hear for myself some of the other songs that are in rotation. But alas, it's not in the cards for now. But as Al says in 'The Biggest Ball of Twine in Minnesota'..."but at least we got our memories."

Friday, March 23, 2018

TCM Sports Legends Experience Preview

The $38.5million, 7.5 - acre Riley Children’s Health Sports Legends Experience combines rich sports history, physical fitness, and health education in a variety of family-fun, outdoor and indoor experiences. Enjoy this drone footage to see the magnitude:
12 immersive outdoor experiences 
  • Indiana Pacers and Indiana Fever Basketball Experience gives families a chance to take their best shot and practice basketball skills on courts with hoops that just their size (fitting adults and little legends).
  • Indianapolis Colts Football Experience sets the scene for kids and their grownups to practice offensive and defensive moves like the pros do among large Colts tackle dummies and take part in passing and kicking challenges.
  • Indy Fuel Hockey Experience provides opportunities to pass, shoot, and score street hockey style. 
  • Subway Soccer Experience engage in soccer fundamentals and multiple goal-kicking opportunities.
  • Indianapolis Motor Speedway Pedal Car Racing Experience and Church Brothers Collision Repair Drag Strip Experience encourages families to get their heart pumping and feet moving on the pedal tracks with kid-sized and adult-sized cars.
  • Pete and Alice Dye Golf Experience presented by Henry and Christine Camferdam invites legends in the making to play some of the Dye’s most famous course and hole designs in the world on a smaller scale. 
  • Wiese Field donated by Elizabeth Bracken Wiese and J. Frederick Wiese Jr. allows baseball fans to pitch, hit, run bases, and catch the ball on a miniature baseball field.
  • Seymour and Rheta Holt Tennis Center encourages adults and little tykes to serve and be served on tennis courts in different sizes.
  • Dr. Cory SerVaas Fitness Path boasts several fitness pads where families are able to practice healthy habits by doing activities and using exercise equipment that improves muscle strength, balance, coordination, and flexibility.
  • Jane and Steve Marmon Run-Walk Experience hosts a track with one lane for jogging and one lane for walking that follows the perimeter of the Riley Children’s Health Sports Legends Experience. 
  • The Children’s Museum Guild’s Fantasy Tree House of Sports, which stands 60-feet tall is a magical place for little tykes to develop curiosity, confidence, and persistence as they climb inside and explore a tree that is filled with fantasy and sports.
  • Old National Bank Avenue of Champions allows visitors to meet a legendary character, hear their story of greatness, and learn the drills and skills that helped them succeed along the Old National Bank Avenue of Champions. Bronze figures will be installed in June. The avenue will feature 12 life-size, bronze sculptures (representing 16 sports legends) with which visitors can pose for photo memories and learn about the athlete’s accomplishments. It will feature some of the greatest athletes sports names of all time while helping visitors discover their own paths to greatness. Legends include: DaMarcus Beasley (soccer), Larry Bird (basketball), Tamika Catchings (basketball), Indianapolis Clowns baseball (Hank Aaron, Mamie “Peanut” Johnson, Marcenia  Lyle “Toni” Stone), Pete & Alice Dye (golf), A.J. Foyt (racing), Wayne Gretzky (hockey), Bobby “Slick” Leonard (basketball), Reggie Miller (basketball), Oscar Robertson (basketball), Wilma Rudolph (track), Reggie Wayne (football), and Barbara Wynne (tennis).
Each miniature sports experience offers age-appropriate equipment and hands-on activities designed to get the whole family working together as a team. “We wanted to take a holistic view of family health and fitness through the lenses of sports and sports legends. The goal was to create an outdoor and indoor experience to promote an active lifestyle in an immersive experience that would bring families together,” said Dr. Jeffrey H. Patchen, president and CEO, The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis. “We believe this extraordinary experience will motivate families to work together to create healthier habits that stay with them a lifetime. In the process, we will provide educational programs that build character, instill life-enhancing values and promote healthy choices through sports.”

Three brand new indoor experiences
The National Art Museum of Sport (NAMOS) captures the eternal spirit, endurance, and resilience of humankind.  It’s amazing to think about how artists capture the spirit of sport and how they portray motion and emotion in their artwork. Visitors will be inspired by the surrounding artwork and then encouraged to create their own at special creation stations.
The World of Sport will introduce children and their families to the key factors that elevated a diverse range of sports figures (both women and men, amateur athletes and professionals, coaches, and other associated careers) to legend status – hard work, training, opportunity, and perseverance. An NCAA Training Facility focuses on the student athlete and the Church Brothers Collision Repair Shop provides an opportunity to challenge each other in a pitstop challenge and learn the history of women and blacks in the sport.
In History of Hoops, visitors learn what it takes to be successful on the court. Children and families learn about athletes’ statistics and percentages; then, they get to try out their own basketball skills to see how they measure up. An area that is sure to be a hit is the interactive in which visitors can practice their footwork with 4x gold medalist and Indiana Fever legend Tamika Catchings. 

Health expertise
A key to the success of these immersive experiences is the ability to draw on the expertise of Riley Children’s at Indiana University Health. 
“Children today face serious lifestyle-related health risks such as obesity, heart disease and type II diabetes, and reversing that trend requires a community-wide effort,” said Matthew Cook, President of Riley Children’s Health. “As Indiana’s only statewide pediatric health system, it is our job to keep kids healthy and out of the hospital. The Riley Children’s Health Sports Legends Experience is designed to get families outside to enjoy the fun that comes with being active together.”
It’s only fitting that visitors to Riley Children’s Health Sports Legends Experience will be greeted by statues of Nike (Greek goddess of speed, strength and victory) and Discobolus of Myron (discus thrower) in the Efroymson Pavilion. Ancient Greeks believed Nike could grant strength and speed to humans to be victorious in any task they undertook. Add the harmony and balance of Discobolus and visitors can walk away with ideas for a well-rounded and healthy lifestyle. 

SLE text courtesy of the Children's Museum

Disclaimer: Styles and Smarts is part of a group of bloggers/YouTubers/media peoples that The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis invites to exhibit openings, in exchange for live tweeting and social media coverage. All opinions and comments are 100% mine, and are in no way influenced by the Children’s Museum.

Friday, March 9, 2018

My Harry Potter Themed Birthday Party

I haven't had a birthday party in years, so when I was facing turning 35 I figured why the heck not. After visiting the Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Universal in December and rereading the entire book series, I had Potter on the brain and decided that would be the theme of my party.

Of course, these days the best resource for any sort of party planning is Pinterest. While I don't mind being crafty, I was also on a budget both monetary and time wise. So I had to pick and choose what I wanted to do. Relevant links are below.

With almost 20 people in attendance, I wanted a lot of simple "finger foods" so that people could graze while socializing. I got several compliments on the food, and considering I'm not much of a cook I'd say that's a win! (Thanks to Costco!)

Charcuterie: Costco
Cheese: Costco
Chips: Aldis

Fruit pastries: World Market
Berries: Costco
Roasted potatoes: Costco

Fizzing Whizzbees: Sour gummies
Cockroach clusters: Chocolate covered peanuts
Jelly slugs: Gummy worms

Treacle fudge: Double chocolate brownies
Polyjuice potion: Sprite and rainbow sherbet
Chocolate digestives and Tim Tams: World Market

Hogwarts plates, napkins and cups: Oriental Trading Company

I kept the decor fairly simple, as I wanted to keep in fairly neutral house affiliation wise. Black is always a good background, but I did add a few colored accents to bring in some house representation for some Hogwarts pride. The colored tissue balls are from Dollar Tree.

Streamers: Dollar Tree
Platform 9 3/4 sign: Google

Thanks to everyone who showed up! Getting older is so much better and more fun when surrounded by family and friends!

Sunday, February 25, 2018

Random Vlog #34: The Flu, Driving Through Pea Soup, Goodwill Finds

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