Sunday, August 30, 2009

Because I Heart the 80's- III

This entry is also part of what I did this summer, as in watch classic episodes of shows such as "Golden Girls" since Summer television has hit an all time low.

Aww, this song brings back such sweet childhood memories- of my father telling us kids to go to bed because it was a "grown-up" show. Funny how tame it is compared to most of today's Primetime shows like "Family Guy" or "American Dad."

What We Did This Summer... Spend Time with Kids

Despite my grandmother's pleas for me to quickly get knocked up, K and I aren't planning on having kids of our own for a couple of years (but who knows... like the NY state lotto motto, "Hey, you never know..."). That doesn't mean we don't like spending time with other people's offspring, and this summer, we had fun doing so:

This party was for Isaiah, who turned 7. Little brother Kasaan didn't get the memo though, as he ended up blowing out the candles.

In July, we went to two kiddie birthday parties, one for my friend Jennie's son, the other my niece Sophia's.

Our gift is the penguin to the right of Sophia... which towers above our teeney niece.

We also got some quality time in with nephews Justin & Nate. Justin got a special K haircut, while Nate came to our place to create his surprise Father's Day gift for his dad:

A good time was had by all. Especially K and I, who got to return the kids to their rightful owners and have restful nights.

K is So Relatable...

My gorgeous hubby, inspired by this (scarcely viewed) blog, has created his own, Everything Related. He's actually been quite prolific- he's add more entries in the past 12 hours then I have had in the past month. He's funny and intelligent- very much the current event/ techie/guy counter to my pop-culture/philosophical/chick blog. And I love it.

What We Did This Summer...Eat! Part 2

The sis and I took our hubbies on a double date to the Olive Garden on June 26th... yeah, we sure have visited a lot of chain "fine dining establishments" lately. The food was good, although our husbands got bored since me & Jos had a non-stop chick gabfest most of the night.

My brother-in-law, Manny, & sister, Joscelyne

Salud! Enjoying a glass of peach sangria.

K and I had a date night of our own on June 13th at Chili's. This is one of K's favorite places.

We didn't only eat out... I tried my hand with barbeque chicken Trinidadian style on May 31st.

I got this recipe from my a book my mother-in-law gave me for Christmas.

The secret ingredient... delish!

So this ends the second installment of what we did this summer. Look out for more.

What We Did This Summer...Eat!

As anyone living on the East Coast can attest too, it has been an extremely rainy summer, not conducive to spending much of any time outdoors. So most of us have been cooped up, not having much to do... but eat! This blog is part two of what I did this summer, focused on barbecues, cafes and diners...

First up, my recent trip to Denny's with my mom and nephew, Nate, just last week:

We all liked the breakfast- except, obviously, the grit soup.

On August 15th, I went to Xocolatz with my sister Jos. While we both thought the restaurant/cafe's decor was cute, we were not thrilled with our lunch choices. I had a mango chicken salad sandwich- the salad was great, but the roll it was served on was way too hard, and overpowered the flavor of the salad. My sister was unimpressed with her common ham and cheese sandwich, and again, found the roll to be too hard. We both preferred our desserts, and I LOVED my flan. Below are some pics:

On July 15th, during a not-so relaxing week off from work (I had grueling physical therapy sessions for my knee), I did manage to get in a break at Red Lobsters with Jos, an old fav of mine. The sis and I both had delicious shrimp dishes, a glass of blush wine, and a chocolately desert. Below, the best part of the meal:

The best grilled burgers and dogs I had this summer came courtesy of K on Independence Day, when he tried his hand for the first time at grilling. The result: delicious!

I'm going to end this post now, but will be back for a part two very soon. I'm getting hungry just recalling all this yumminess. Time to break for lunch.

What We Did This Summer... Fix Stuff

This is first in a series of what I did this summer, kind of a throw back to elementary school where you have to write an essay during the first week back on what you did the last couple of months. So here goes:

Last week, we headed to Staples to buy supplies for K's Xbox, which supposedly had the red ring of death. Don't feel bad if you have never heard about it, neither had I until he told me about it. But then again, I still didn't get it, as the video below shows...

K had some words about our trip, too...

Okay, if you had a problem understanding him, it's alright. My husband is, in the words of Jerry Seinfield, a low talker. But the most important part of what he said is clearly audible. And "I love you, too."

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

RIP Baby Girl...

On this, the 8th anniversary of R&B singer Aaliyah's death, I wanted to share some videos I found on YouTube:

This is a remix which combines Aaliyah, Michael Jackson & Left Eye... which sounds weird, but actually kind of works...

And finally, a megamix of Aaliyah songs, which is awesome. Kudos to the fan who put it together!

Sometimes, Worship Does Feel Like a Championship Game

... at least at some churches I've attended. The Praise and Worship "Team" seem so hyped up before hand, you'd think they'd just ran out from hearing a pep speech in the locker room. And their performance can be so exhausting, I've seen a number of the lead singers carry cool water bottles and towels up on stage with them. And still they work up a sweat. And the back-up vocalists- they have to remember all the coordinated plays, uh er, steps to sway to the music. And when it's over, if it's been a great set, the singers and musicians seem to bounce off the stage, ready to be doused with Gatorade. Being that it is church though, sports drinks aren't available... but if they wait until after the sermon they CAN get a little bit of grape juice via Communion.

Let the church say "Amen!", and enjoy!

Monday, August 24, 2009

So What Happened to We're All One in Christ?

I was watching an ABC Evening News story last night about two Kentucky Southern Baptist Chrurches- one White, one Black- that due to economic and other issues, combined into one large congregation. While the story was full of hope, I couldn't help but feel appalled that this "groundbreaking" story, took place, not in 1969, but just this summer. The segment offered up this scary statistic- just "five percent" of churches nationwide are mutiracial (!). I now feel extra fortunate to have belonged to a nondenominational church which is full of different cultures, races and ages.

While watching the story, I couldn't help but think of Galatians 3:28: "There is neither Jew nor Greek, slave nor free, male nor female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus." While looking up this verse, I found a few others for cross-reference which are also very fitting to this topic:

  • For by one Spirit we were all baptized into one body, whether Jews or Greeks, whether slaves or free, and we were all made to drink of one Spirit. (I Cor 12:13)

  • For you are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus. (Gal 3:26)

  • For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision means anything, but faith working through love. (Gal 5:6)

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

This Is What A Slow News Week Looks Like...

The First Lady in shorts- a fashion faux pas to some critics according to the "Today" show. But who are those critics? Any why do they care?

This morning, while I was trying to get my thick hair subdued into a bun for the umpteenth day thanks to a recent Northeast heatwave, I saw a "news" story on the "Today" show (ok, so it's not exactly the place for hard hitting news pieces, I know, but still...) about Michelle Obama's (shocking?) choice to wear shorts (GASP! EGADS!) while on vacation to the Grand Canyon recently. I watched as Matt Lauer asked the panelists their opinions of this fashion debacle (?). The odd thing that struck me was how neither of the two really seemed so up in arms about the First Lady's shorts. In fact, the "con" panelist, Robin Gihven, admitted she was merely "ambivalent" about the matter- which is far from opposing it. I sat wondering, who exactly, is so upset about her shorts? And why is this (non-) story being presented as a controversy? And quite frankly, being that I was so hot while tying up my hair while preparing for work at the time, I would not bash anyone for seeking to stay cool during summer heat, especially not Mrs. O who was facing 100+ degree heat for those fantastic views.

While the "Today" show has been on a roll lately with fashion themed stories- the danger of skinny jeans and the health scare related to wearing flip-flops come to mind- this morning's story some how upped the ante in foolishness. Why? I couldn't quite verbalize why, but luckily, this story by Kate Dailey answers it wonderfully:

"But why hide behind an anonymous attacker? Why not just come out and say, "Michelle Obama wore shorts, which most first ladies haven't done before," (Is this even true? Five dollars says there's a photo of Eleanor Roosevelt in short pants somewhere in the national archive).

Because if there's not controversy, it's just the American public gawking at a woman's form. This is something that happens all the time, but needs to be cloaked in social relevance when the woman is not a traditional target for public consumption. Models, actresses, even athletes can be the subject of objectification, but to ogle the first lady on national TV requires a bit of news-related window dressing.

By reporting on "some critics," journalists allow themselves to be the heroes. They're coming to Obama's rescue by defending her right to wear whatever she pleases—a right that was never questioned in the first place, and a right that almost everyone in America is OK with. In the process, they are able to yet again comment on her body, making her legs, her hips, her thighs, and her belly just as much a part of public discourse as her husband's health-care fight.

Never mind the fact that all this talk about people supporting Obama's shorts makes it seem like society gets a say in how one woman chooses to dress. The decisions women make about their clothing and bodies isn't something for which we need "approval" and support"—and yet we're conducting polls to reassure one another that we're ok with a grown woman exposing her legs.

Michelle Obama does not need to be rescued. She does not need you commenting on the finer points of her body. And she most definitely does not need our permission to wear shorts."

Amen, sister. Now perhaps they can get back to real news, like the battle over Healthcare Reform or the recent spate or terrorist attacks in Iran. But I doubt it.

Monday, August 17, 2009

The Pulpit Pimps Preaching Remains Popular

At this convention, attendees were quicker to lay their cash on the altar then their knees or burdens.

Sigh... so despite (or more likely, BECAUSE of) the fact that this country is mired in the worse economic downturn since the great depression, many Christians are following the Pulpit Pimps and their special brand of preaching called the Prosperity Gospel. According to this New York Times story:

"Onstage before thousands of believers weighed down by debt and economic insecurity, Kenneth and Gloria Copeland and their all-star lineup of “prosperity gospel” preachers delighted the crowd with anecdotes about the luxurious lives they had attained by following the Word of God.

Private airplanes and boats. A motorcycle sent by an anonymous supporter. Vacations in Hawaii and cruises in Alaska. Designer handbags. A ring of emeralds and diamonds.

“God knows where the money is, and he knows how to get the money to you,” preached Mrs. Copeland, dressed in a crisp pants ensemble like those worn by C.E.O.’s.

Even in an economic downturn, preachers in the “prosperity gospel” movement are drawing sizable, adoring audiences. Their message — that if you have sufficient faith in God and the Bible and donate generously, God will multiply your offerings a hundredfold — is reassuring to many in hard times."

Eww... may God have mercy! More and more, I've become very distressed at how the True message of the Gospel has been replaced in Christianity today by an overemphasis on things of this world, which will pass away. I'm immediately reminded of Jesus warning in Matthew 6:24: "No one can serve two masters. Either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and Money."

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Because I Heart the Eighties- II

Enjoy this fabulous montage of such great 80's hits as "Pinwheel", "Chapi Chapo" and last but not least, "Picture Pages w/ Bill Cosby". There's something about that Mortimer Marker that always makes me smile!

Next up, this "Crispy Critters" commercial, which should win an award for all the times the word "Indubitably".

And one of my favorite cartoons of all time, "Muppet Babies". Long before Tommy and Chuckie roamed the Nicktoon world, Kermie & Piggy reigned using just their imaginations! Here's the theme song:

Hope you enjoyed this 80's gems- hey does anyone remember Jem???

It Doesn't Sound Right When People Say It Either...

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Because I Heart The 80's...

... well, most of it. I hope shoulder pads and Flock of Seagull's haircuts never make a resurgence. But anyway, I stumbled on one of my favorite songs from childhood, Be Be & Ce Ce Winans "Heaven" on Youtube. I figured I'd post it here. Enjoy the "Dick Tracy"(also a personal fav of elementary school years) type video- and have a blessed Lord's Day.

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