Tuesday, September 26, 2017

Top Movies of All Time according to IMDB ~ #18 The Matrix (1999)

You know I don't like scary movies but I have to say I thought The Matrix was pretty cool.  Of course I like the stars of this movie -- Keanu Reeves, Laurence Fishburne, and Carrie-Anne Moss.  Humanity is being used as energy to keep machines alive.  They think they are having a real life but their minds are actually locked into an artificial reality known as the matrix.  Neo (Reeves) finds Morpheus (or did Morpheus find Neo?) and learns about the matrix.  Now the Machines are after them as they foment a rebellion.  There is lots of great  CGI and larger than life cinematography.

Academy Awards, USA 2000

Best Film Editing
Zach Staenberg 
Best Sound
John T. Reitz
Gregg Rudloff
David E. Campbell
David Lee 
Best Effects, Sound Effects Editing
Dane A. Davis 
Best Effects, Visual Effects
John Gaeta
Janek Sirrs
Steve Courtley
Jon Thum 

Sunday, September 24, 2017

Top Movies of All Time according to IMDB ~ #17 Goodfellas (1990)

Image result

Apparently I love gangster movies.  Of course this another one that was shot back in the day when we didn't have to see all the gory details.  Most were just suggested.  Ray Liotta  plays Henry Hill, a quiet young boy who gets involved in the mob and works his way up through the ranks.  When drug addiction and a couple of mistakes torpedoes his career he decides to not be so quiet.

Goodfellas is a movie that typecast so many actors as mobsters for the rest of their acting careers.

Academy Awards, USA 1991

Best Actor in a Supporting Role
Joe Pesci 
Best Picture
Irwin Winkler 
Best Actress in a Supporting Role
Lorraine Bracco 
Best Director
Martin Scorsese 
Best Writing, Screenplay Based on Material from Another Medium
Nicholas Pileggi
Martin Scorsese 
Best Film Editing
Thelma Schoonmaker 

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

2017 Craft Space Organization Challenge Take 2 ~ Challenge #7

So how did you make out with Challenge #6.  I'm not a huge fibre user on my pages so I was pretty sure this was an easy challenge for me.  It was fun re-discovering just how much pretty ribbon, floss and washi tape I actually have.

Are you ready for Challenge #7?

Embellishments are some of the easiest things to buy.  Everything looks so good, and you really believe you NEED everything!  Embellishments are also one of the supplies most affected by trends.  Careful consideration is really needed here.

It's also important to find a system that will help you store all of your embellishments in a way that won't overwhelm you, yet also is visible enough that you don't forget to USE them.  

Let's S.P.A.C.E. them.

SORT: As always, bring all of your embellishments together.  Touch every piece that you have and ruthlessly sort through them, deciding what to KEEP, TOSS, SELL, DONATE

PURGE: Immediately throw out the TOSS pile. Bag up and assign a price and your initials to the SELL pile, and put them in the garage sale box. Set up a drop-off or pick-up of the DONATE pile.

ASSIGN: Sort through the KEEP pile in a way that makes sense to you.  Some ideas for sorting your embellishments
1) by category (buttons, brads, alphabets, charms, etc.)
2) by colour
3) by manufacturer
4) by type (metal, acrylic)
5) by theme

CONTAINERIZE: Now that you've decided how to sort your embellishments, the next step is decided how to store them, and how to label them!  Research online will give you great ideas. Talking to other crafters may give you an idea what worked for them.

EQUALIZE: take a few minutes at the end of each scrapping session, when you return from a crop, or return from a shopping trip to put your embellishments away where they belong.

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Aylmer, ON ~ Howe's Farm Market

On our recent road trip our first stop was at Steed & Company Lavender and our second stop was to Howe's Farm Market.  


The store is so clean, attractive, and well-stocked.  We needed nothing and yet still managed to make a few purchases.  The staff were extremely personable and helpful.  Thoroughly enjoyed this stop.

Monday, September 18, 2017

Top Movies of All Time according to IMDB ~ #16 One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest (1975)

This is one of my favourite scenes from the movie.  I had seen One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest many many many years ago so I decided to give it another go.  I think even more of it now than I originally did.  

Jack Nicholson plays McMurphy, who wrangled a trip from the prison farm to a mental institution for an assesment.  McMurphy was sure he would have an easier time finishing out his sentence at the hospital.  I'm not going to state that McMurphy was or was not mentally ill when he arrived but, because of his rebellious behaviour, he was treated as ill.  The end of the movie was so sad and yet so powerful.  It does not surprise me that this movie won so many awards.

Academy Awards, USA 1976

Best Picture
Saul Zaentz
Michael Douglas
'One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest' became the first film in 41 years to sweep the major categories ... More
Best Actor in a Leading Role
Jack Nicholson 
Best Actress in a Leading Role
Louise Fletcher 
Best Director
Milos Forman 
Best Writing, Screenplay Adapted From Other Material
Lawrence Hauben
Bo Goldman 
Best Actor in a Supporting Role
Brad Dourif 
Best Cinematography
Haskell Wexler
Bill Butler 
Best Film Editing
Richard Chew
Lynzee Klingman
Sheldon Kahn 
Best Music, Original Dramatic Score
Jack Nitzsche 

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Book Review: Gallows Thief by Bernard Cornwell

It's been a while since I've done a book review.  Not that I quit reading or anything like that.  

Image result for Gallows Thief

I just finished Gallows Thief by Bernard Cornwell last night.  I think it may have been the cause of two nights of insomnia . . . LOL.  It is very exciting and swashbuckling with really well portrayed characters.  Each character is really well developed and I love their individual quirks.

The main character is Rider Sandman, a rich man's son, a retired soldier, and hero of Waterloo.  When his comfortable life is taken from him he must find new means to support himself, his mother, and his sister.  He arrives in London to find employment and becomes a special investigator hired to make sure that the artist due to hang for the murder of a Countess is guilty.

I recommend this book but suggest that you don't read it if you need to sleep.  It is a definite page turner.

Monday, September 11, 2017

Top Movies of All Time according to IMDB ~ #15 The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers (2002)

What can I say that I didn't say in the last two Lord of the Rings reviews?  The costumes and backgrounds and CGI and scenery and imagination . . . all epic . . . as befits an epic movie like The Lord of the Rings:  The Two Towers.

Academy Awards, USA 2003

Best Sound Editing
Ethan Van der Ryn
Mike Hopkins 
Best Visual Effects
Jim Rygiel
Joe Letteri
Randall William Cook
Alex Funke 
Best Picture
Barrie M. Osborne
Fran Walsh
Peter Jackson 
Best Art Direction-Set Decoration
Grant Major (art director)
Dan Hennah (set decorator)
Alan Lee (set decorator) 
Best Film Editing
Michael Horton 
Best Sound
Christopher Boyes
Michael Semanick
Michael Hedges
Hammond Peek 

Sunday, September 10, 2017

Sparta ON ~ Steed & Company Lavender

How do you stay indoors on a beautiful fall-ish day?  

We can't so Hubby and I enjoyed a wonderful afternoon on a road trip around the Aylmer area.  I can't get over how much there is to see and do in this neck of the woods.

Our first stop was to Steed and Company Lavender.  It is a very beautiful property.  I would have enjoyed walking the paths but Dear Hubby has a "thing" about bugs.  We did enjoying ourselves in their little store.  Everything was beautiful and fragrant, and the edibles were very tasty.  Hal made sure of that.

We really enjoyed the gardens and beautiful water feature.

Everything smelled so wonderful . . . 

. . . or tasted so good.

The young lady who assisted us was very competent and friendly.  I love great customer service.  We ended up buying lavender honey, pillow spray and a large bundle of dried lavender.   

Steed and Company Lavender is located at 47589 Sparta Line, Sparta ON.  They are open from Mother's Day until Christmas and the hours are Wednesday to Saturday 10 am to 5 pm and Sunday noon until 4 pm.  www.steedandcompany.com

Saturday, September 9, 2017

2017 Craft Space Organization Challenge Take 2 ~ Challenge #6

Just to complicate (or perhaps simplify in the long run) my organization plans for my studio, I bought a gorgeous wall unit at auction which lead to me completely changing the whole room, getting rid of now excess storage bins and shelves and generally decluttering the whole space.

Once my "new" studio was basically set up, I got back to work on organizing my stash.

Challenge #5 is done.  All my die cuts, stickers and alphabets have been sorted and the containers labelled.  I only filled one wastebasket with "stuff" I knew I would never actually use.
That surprised me.  I thought I didn't have any superfluous products.
And now I'm ready for Challenge #6.

This week's challenge is to organize all those ribbons and fibres.  There is no "right" way to store your ribbons and fibre.  The most important factor is that the system works for YOU.  First, let's make some S.P.A.C.E.

SORT: Gather together all of your ribbons and fiber, and sort them into piles: KEEP, TOSS, SELL, DONATE.

PURGE: Throw out the TOSS pile.  Immediately make arrangements for pick-up or drop-off of the DONATE pile.  Bag up, and assign a price and your initials to the SELL pile, and immediately put these in your garage sale box.

ASSIGN: Sort your KEEP pile into types/colours of fibre and ribbon.  If your ribbons are in a big wrinkled mess, take time now to give everything a pressing (careful with the heat, some synthetics may melt!).

CONTAINERIZE: Consider the space that you have, and the way that you work. Here are some ideas that work for both ribbons and fibres:

1) on those little cardboard bobbins meant for embroidery floss
2) organized by colour in big clear glass jars on a shelf
3) wound and paper clipped and stored with their coordinating embellishments
4) Cropper Hopper mini embellishment boxes and sorted by colour
5) in small ziploc bags stored in a photo box, or on a big ring
6) in sports cards organizer pages, sorted by colour and in a binder
7) wound on index cards and stored in a photo box
8) loosely tied on a big ring

EQUALIZE: take a few minutes at the end of each scrapping session, when you return from a crop, or return from a shopping trip to put your ribbons and fibres away where they belong.

Thursday, September 7, 2017

Top Movies of all Time according to IMDB ~ #14 Inception (2010)

I would like a survey of the type of people who rate IMDB's top movies.

I watched Inception.  While I enjoyed the acting and the special effects, the story itself was unnecessarily complex and odd.  My son must have thought that my cool reception to this movie might be because I didn't understand it so he tried to explain it . . . LOL.  I got it, I just wasn't crazy about it.

Having said all that, I would watch it again if I had to . . . it just wouldn't be my first choice.

It seems the Academy agreed with me . . . 

Academy Awards, USA 2011

Best Achievement in Cinematography
Wally Pfister 
Best Achievement in Sound Mixing
Lora Hirschberg
Gary Rizzo
Ed Novick 
Best Achievement in Sound Editing
Richard King 
Best Achievement in Visual Effects
Chris Corbould
Andrew Lockley
Pete Bebb
Paul J. Franklin 
Best Motion Picture of the Year
Christopher Nolan
Emma Thomas 
Best Writing, Original Screenplay
Christopher Nolan 
Best Achievement in Music Written for Motion Pictures, Original Score
Hans Zimmer 
Best Achievement in Art Direction
Guy Hendrix Dyas (production designer)
Larry Dias (set decorator)
Douglas A. Mowat (set decorator) 

Saturday, September 2, 2017

In My World ~ Books by Pam Hedden

To view and order books I've published,
Don't forget your coupon code.

In My World Facebook Groups

In My World: Pam's Paper Piecings https://www.facebook.com/PaperPiecings/

In My World: Scrapbooking with Sketches https://www.facebook.com/ScrapbookingWithSketches/

In My World: Craft Space Organization Challenge https://www.facebook.com/groups/1190893587663199/

Friday, September 1, 2017

Crafting finishes in August 2017

I have so many big projects on the go including several quilts and a tablecloth.  These are some of my distractions.  I am in serious withdrawl.  I have not scrapbooked in forever.  Good thing I'm heading to Windswept Cottage at the end of the month.  There will be no distractions there.

Here is what I completed in August:

Thursday, August 31, 2017

Top Movies of All Time according to IMDB ~ #13 Forrest Gump (1994)

Who doesn't love Tom Hanks?

In fact, some days I'd like to be Forrest Gump. 
Forrest Gump, is considered slow-witted, but thanks to his Mother he was never left out of anything.  In fact, he had many adventures including being a college football star, a soldier in Vietnam, the captain of a fishing boat, and a ping pong champion, These adventures have allowed him to be part of many historic moments.  It is an awesome story.

Academy Awards, USA 1995 

Best Picture
Wendy Finerman
Steve Starkey
Steve Tisch

Best Actor in a Leading Role
Tom Hanks

Best Director
Robert Zemeckis

Best Writing, Screenplay Based on Material Previously Produced or Published
Eric Roth

Best Film Editing
Arthur Schmidt

Best Effects, Visual Effects
Ken Ralston
George Murphy
Stephen Rosenbaum
Allen Hall

Oscar Best Actor in a Supporting Role
Gary Sinise

Best Cinematography
Don Burgess

Best Art Direction-Set Decoration
Rick Carter
Nancy Haigh

Best Sound
Randy Thom
Tom Johnson
Dennis S. Sands
William B. Kaplan

Best Effects, Sound Effects Editing
Gloria S. Borders
Randy Thom

Best Makeup
Daniel C. Striepeke
Hallie D'Amore
Judith A. Cory

Best Music, Original Score
Alan Silvestri

Monday, August 28, 2017

2017 Craft Space Organization Challenge Take 2 ~ Challenge #5

I just dumped my tool tote.

New smaller totes . . . one for markers and the other for my basic tools.

Extra tools are in the two green totes.  My stamps are in the wicker basket.

One bin is for foam stamps and the other contains punches.

How did you make out on Challenge #4.  I actually downsized my tool tote quite a bit.  I guess I just stuff everything in there even if I just use it once a year.  In fact, that is the secret to downsizing my readily-available-on-my-desk tote . . . everything that is only used once in a blue moon has been containerized.  While it is all still available, it is out of the way until I need it . . . which will be when there is another blue moon.  I was actually surprised at how few markers I threw out.  

I'm ready for Challenge #5:

Image result for stickers, die cuts and rub ons storage

Stickers, diecuts, and rub-ons are some of the hardest things to organize because the different sizes and shapes pose many challenges. Rub-ons present their own challenges because if they aren't stored properly, they stick to each other, damaging precious supplies.

SORT: time to be ruthless. Consider if you are really going to use these items. If you bought a whole sheet of die cut just to use one or two tags, why are you hanging on to the whole sheet? Those stickers you bought in 1999 were adorable then, but definitely not your style now, are they? So, sort into piles: TRASH, SELL, DONATE, TO KEEP

PURGE: Throw out the TRASH pile. Bag up, and assign a price and your initials to the SELL pile and put them directly into the garage sale box. Make immediate arrangements to rid yourself of the DONATE items. 

ASSIGN: The KEEP items need to be divided into categories that make sense to you: by colour, by manufacturer, theme, size, or type.

CONTAINERIZE: Here is an article about storing stickers, diecuts and rub-ons: http://www.simplyorganized.me/2011/12/scrapbook-organization-stickers.html

EQUALIZE: take a few minutes at the end of each scrap session, and whenever you return from a crop or a shopping trip to put your stickers, rub-ons and diecuts where they belong.

Saturday, August 26, 2017

Top Movies of All Time according to IMDB ~ #10 Fight Club (1999)

I know I watched part of this movie back sometime in the murky past but I'm pretty sure I have never seen the whole movie.  Knowing I can't write a review without actually seeing the whole movie, I decided to give it another try.  It took most of the afternoon to watch it because every time I got annoyed I would hit pause and walk away for a while.  My grandson stopped in and asked me what I was watching.  "Just about the dumbest movie I've ever seen," says I.  "So why are you watching it then," says he.  "Well because I've made it all the way to the last half hour and I'm going to just stick it out to the end now."  And I did.

I like Edward Norton and Brad Pitt.  I think Meatloaf as Bob is cool.  Helen Bonham Carter always cracks me up with her eccentric characters.  So why don't I like this movie?  I guess it just seems dumb to me.  It is just too far out for me.

I think the Academy agrees with me . . . 

Academy Awards, USA 2000

Best Effects, Sound Effects Editing
Ren Klyce
Richard Hymns 

Thursday, August 24, 2017

Top Movies of All Time according to IMDB ~ # 12 Star Wars: Episode V - The Empire Strikes Back (1980)

It was so long ago but I think I saw the first Star Wars movie at the old St. Thomas Drive-In.  Amazing!

I can't remember if I saw The Empire Strikes Back at the movie theatre, drive-in, or on video for the first time, but I do remember seeing it many times including fairly recently.

Exciting action, wonderful creative aliens, lots of humour mixed in with the heroics and danger.  I don't think you can watch this movie (or the entire series) too many times.

Next rainy day why not enjoy a Star Wars movie binge?

Academy Awards, USA 1981

Best Sound
Bill Varney
Steve Maslow
Gregg Landaker
Peter Sutton 
Special Achievement Award
Brian Johnson
Richard Edlund
Dennis Muren
Bruce Nicholson
For visual effects (statuette).
Best Art Direction-Set Decoration
Norman Reynolds
Leslie Dilley
Harry Lange
Alan Tomkins
Michael Ford 
Best Music, Original Score
John Williams 

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Top Movies of All Time according to IMDB ~ #11 The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring (2001)

I probably would not have watched this movie and the sequels if not for this top movie list.  Otherworldly fantasies with scary stuff and violence and not generally my cup of tea.  And it would have been my loss.  The story is wonderful and vivid and exciting . . . 

Starring Elijah Wood, Ian McKellen, Orlando Bloom, and many more, this is the story of a very dangerous ring found by a Hobbit named Frodo and the epic journey to destroy the ring and save Middle Earth.  He is aided by a powerful wizard, his best friends, and joined by others on his journey.

This movie is filmed in New Zealand and is worth watching just for all the lush exotic scenery.

Excellent edge of your seat entertainment.  Just be careful.  If you watch one you will want to watch all the others in the series . . . and you might even want to read the books by J.R.R. Tolkien.  They are on my reading list.

Academy Awards, USA 2002

Best Cinematography
Andrew Lesnie 
Best Makeup
Peter Owen
Richard Taylor 
Best Music, Original Score
Howard Shore 
Best Effects, Visual Effects
Jim Rygiel
Randall William Cook
Richard Taylor
Mark Stetson 
Best Picture
Peter Jackson
Barrie M. Osborne
Fran Walsh 
Best Actor in a Supporting Role
Ian McKellen 
Best Director
Peter Jackson 
Best Writing, Screenplay Based on Material Previously Produced or Published
Fran Walsh
Philippa Boyens
Peter Jackson 
Best Art Direction-Set Decoration
Grant Major (art director)
Dan Hennah (set decorator) 
Best Costume Design
Ngila Dickson
Richard Taylor 
Best Film Editing
John Gilbert 
Best Music, Original Song
Nicky Ryan
Roma Ryan
For the song "May It Be".
Best Sound
Christopher Boyes
Michael Semanick
Gethin Creagh
Hammond Peek 

Monday, August 21, 2017

2017 Craft Space Organization Challenge Take 2 ~ Challenge #4

I've finished Challenge #3. How about you?
I'm very lucky because I've done the photo challenge so many times over the years. I always upload my photos to my favourite photo processing site as I go along but I wait for a sale and then order them to be printed. As soon as I pick them up from the store I pop them right into page kits. All done.

How did you decide to sort and store your photos?

If you are ready, here is Challenge #4 . . .

Tools & Adhesives

Gather together all of your tools and adhesives into a box and let's start S.P.A.C.E.ing them!

Sort: one by one, put each item into piles: FAVOURITES, TRASH, TO SELL, STORE, DONATE.

Purge: For the SELL pile: bag up and assign a price and your initials to tools/adhesives that you don't love/use anymore and put them in your garage sale box. Throw out the TRASH pile. Arrange pick-up or drop-off of the DONATE pile.

Assign: Store your most used items in a basket or box or other system right on your desk, within easy reach. Divide the STORE items into categories that make sense to you: cutting tools, pens, punches, templates, etc.

Containerize: This is the time to tidy up your tools. Tools need regular maintenance to keep them efficiently working. As you put your tools away in whatever container (drawers, shelves, boxes, baskets - always ensuring the container is clearly labelled) give them a little maintenance.

scissors - sharpen your scissors using a small scissor sharpener, or have them professionally done. Carefully clean the blades (I like alcohol swabs to remove sticky adhesive)

pens - test pens and throw out the ones that are dry or don't work well.

craft knives - change the blades

trimmers - clean the deck of your trimmers with a damp cloth, and a little cleanser if necessary. Replace dull blades, or cut through fine sandpaper or aluminium foil.

work surface - clean ink, adhesive and paint from the mat.

punches - to prevent punches from sticking, punch through wax paper. Problem punches may need a little lubricating oil such as sewing machine oil, then punch through scrap paper several times to remove oily residue. Dull punches can be sharpened by punching through aluminium foil or fine grade sandpaper (both right side up and upside down)

rubber stamps - stamps should be cleaned after each use, but if there is a build up of ink on your stamps, you should clean them with an alcohol free baby wipe, or paper towels moistened with a mild cleanser (ammonia free/bleach free) Use a soft toothbrush to remove ink stuck in the crevices of a design. Store stamps flat, rubber side down.

Equalize: Once you have a system in place for you tools, putting them back in the same place every time will become a reflex, and you will never have to hunt for you scissors again! Take a couple of minutes at the end of each scrap session to put your tools away.

Friday, August 18, 2017

Top Movies of All Time according to IMDB ~ #9 The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

The spaghetti western is an "interesting" genre but my mother always said, if you can't say anything nice you should say nothing at all.  I have nothing to say about The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly.

No Oscar nominations or wins.  

Thursday, August 17, 2017

Top Movies of All Time according to IMDB ~ #7 Pulp Fiction (1994)

Pulp Fiction (1994)

I'm probably going to rile up a bunch of people with my opinion of this movie.  I absolutely hated it.  I tried to make myself watch it again to properly review it and perhaps give a solid reason why I hated it so much but I just couldn't make myself do it.

A while back my dear hubby and I were at a dinner party with a group which consisted mostly of theatre people and the topic of best and worst movies came up.  When I mentioned that I thought "Pulp Fiction" was one of the worst movies I had every seen they all stared at me like I was a calf with three heads.

So, the other day I decided to watch Pulp Fiction again.  I kept an open mind figuring perhaps I just wasn't understanding the movie.  I lasted about 30 minutes before I shut it off and walked away.  So I guess I must be the three-headed calf.

From IMDB:  

The lives of two mob hit men, a boxer, a gangster's wife, and a pair of diner bandits intertwine in four tales of violence and redemption.

I really don't understand why I don't like it.  I love so many of the actors in it . . . sigh . . . 

Academy Awards, USA 1995

Best Writing, Screenplay Written Directly for the Screen
Quentin Tarantino
Roger Avary

Oscar Best Picture
Lawrence Bender

Best Actor in a Leading Role
John Travolta

Best Actor in a Supporting Role
Samuel L. Jackson

Best Actress in a Supporting Role
Uma Thurman

Best Director
Quentin Tarantino

Best Film Editing
Sally Menke

Top Movies of All Time according to IMDB ~ #18 The Matrix (1999)

You know I don't like scary movies but I have to say I thought The Matrix was pretty cool.  Of course I like the stars of this movi...