oscars 2015



My husband and I rarely fight over the TV.  We both enjoy watching sports and most of the same TV shows. We hardly ever want to watch different programs as the same time.

Except for last night.

Last night, I wanted to watch the Academy Awards – from the very beginning, on the red carpet. Dan wanted to watch the Grantland basketball hour with guest Kobe Bryant. This meant for the last half hour of the red carpet and the first half hour of the actual ceremony, our living room was a battleground. I ceded ground during the red carpet, but surged back at 8:30 when the ceremony began. During J.K. Simmon’s acceptance speech, Dan said, “We don’t have to listen to the speeches, though, right?” and switched to Grantland.


Dan: “Do you not understand who Kobe is?”


It was a bit dramatic.

Once 9:00 hit and Grantland was over, peace returned to our humble abode and it was all Oscars, all night. My favorite moments of the show were:

  • How adorable Anna Faris and Chris Pratt were on the red carpet with Robin Roberts. Don’t they just seem like a couple who could live next door to you and be your best friends?
  • The opening number. I love anytime Neil Patrick Harris or Anna Kenderick sing, and Jack Black always cracks me up. Plus, I thought all the visual effects were flat-out awesome.
  • NPH in general. He was a great host, with just enough of an edge (“Snowden couldn’t be here for some treason”) mixed with just enough corny (“This Oscar presenter is just so lovely you could eat her up with her spoon”).  I even enjoyed the briefcase bit, though I know not a lot of people did.
  • Quoting Robin Williams in the presentation of Best Supporting Actor, which was a nice homage to the late Oscar winner.
  • NPH introducing Jennifer Aniston and David Oyelowo as a presenting pair by saying, “Both of whom deserve to be here,” a nod to the fact that both gave strong and well-regarded performances in movies this past year but failed to be nominated for an acting award.
  • Idina Menzel and John Travolta presenting Best Song together and joking around about Travolta’s mispronunciation of Menzel’s name last year, plus NPH’s intro and follow-up jokes to their presentation (“Travolta will be back next year to apologize to Idina for all the face touching”).
  • Acceptance speeches: J.K. Simmons’s request that everyone call their parents; Patricia Arquette’s call for equal pay among the sexes (plus Meryl Streep and J. Lo’s reactions); Common andJohn Legend’s eloquence; Graham Moore’s “stay weird, stay different” message; Dana Perry speaking about her son Evan and saying “we need to talk about suicide, out loud”; Eddie Redmayne’s adorable excitement; Julianne Moore being happy to win an Oscar because it could mean an extra five years of life with her younger husband; Michael Keaton saying, “I’m just happy to be here.”
  • The PERFORMANCES. What a year for them! The supreme talent that is Jennifer Hudson giving a beautiful tribute to those who passed away; a pure fun performance of “Everything is Awesome” complete with Lego Oscars; Tim McGraw singing “Not Gonna Miss You,” very gracefully – the lyrics of which were just heartbreaking; Common and John Legend’s incredible performance of “Glory,” with such strong lyrics, Legend’s gorgeous voice, and the crowds of people walking behind them across a replica bridge. AND LADY GAGA HOLY MOLY. She looked so classy, and her pure talent and traditional training shown through. I was so blown away.

What were your favorite moments of the Oscars this year? What winners do you agree and disagree with the most?


weekly gems


Photo above: sunset over the Target parking lot. Beauty in the simplest of places!

31 Day Blog Challenge: Days 2 & 3

I recently discovered and joined the 31 Day Blog Challenge. Here are (yesterday) Day 2: Favorite Quote(s) and (today) Day 3: What makes you happy?


Day 2: Favorite Quotes

I LOVE quotes. I keep a quote journal, I have an extensive Pinterest quote collection, I follow multiple Twitter accounts that exist solely to tweet quotes, etc. So there are a great deal of quotes that inspire me or have been especially meaningful to me throughout the years. However, over the past year or so – a time in which I have been trying to get sure footing in my career and life post-college while also learning how to better manage my anxiety – the quotes that have been especially inspirational and guiding to me have been the following two:


Source: flickr.com via Kelly on Pinterest

Source: flickr.com via Kelly on Pinterest



Day 4: What makes you happy?

At this point in my life, I could write a great deal on this prompt. I am about 2/3 of the way through The Happiness Project, just purchased Happier at Home and Daring Greatly, and have been bookmarking articles on happiness and balance left and right. I guess the best answer I have to this question at this moment is this: Thinking about what I’m grateful for and brightens my life makes me happy. Morning coffee, cuddles and walks and playing with Madison, baking, reading a really good book, listening to history podcasts, watching a funny TV show, sharing a meal with my family, trivia with my friends, painting my nails, spending all day in sweatpants, helping and laughing and teaching my students and athletes, working out until I am dripping with sweat and feel on fire, listening to my mom play the piano, playing cards with my grandma, seeing a beautiful sunset or sunrise, and so much more.


What quotes do you love? What makes you happy?

weekly gems

oscars recap 2012

I love watching the Academy Awards. I seriously act like a kid on Christmas. Everything about the show interests me: fashion, montages, behind-the-scenes, host and presenter humor, touching speeches, etc. This year, in addition to avidly discussing the show as it happened with my family, I also shared my thoughts and followed others via Twitter. In fact, I created a collection of my favorite Oscar 2012 tweets that offer humorous commentary and brief recaps of stand-out moments. That collection does include any photos of the evening’s fashion, however. For that, you can check out one of these three slideshows (1, 2, 3) or check out my personal top ten looks list below:
10. Miss Piggy in Zac Posen and Kermit the Frog in Brooks Brothers : )

Source: usmagazine.com via Kelly on Pinterest

9. Sandra Bullock in a gorgeous backless Marchesa gown
8. Cameron Diaz in Gucci
7. Penelope Cruz in Giorgio Armani

Source: celebmoon.com via Kelly on Pinterest

6. Milla Jovovich in Elie Saab
5. Emma Stone in Giambattista Valli Haute Couture

Source: redbookmag.com via Kelly on Pinterest

4. Tina Fey in Carolina Herrera
3. Kristen Wiig in J. Mendel
2. Octavia Spencer in Tadashi Shoji

Source: redbookmag.com via Kelly on Pinterest

1. Jessica Chastain in Alexander McQueen
It was really hard to narrow down to a single “Best Dressed,” but I fell in love Jessica Chastain’s look. She just looked so regal and beautiful. I love the colors of the intricately detailed dress and how it complemented her skin tone and hair color. She looked like she was glowing! Octavia Spencer was definitely a close second for me. Her dress flattered her perfectly, in addition to being totally gorgeous. I adored Emma Stone, Tina Fey, and Kristen Wiig’s looks as well. I felt like the gowns all fit their personalities (well, at least the view I have of their personalities) and took their natural beauty to the highest level. Milla Jovovich, Penelope Cruz, Cameron Diaz, and Sandra Bullock all looked outstanding. Their gowns are what I imagine when I think “Oscar dresses” and they all pulled them off flawlessly. Lastly, I had to include Miss Piggy and Kermit. I just can’t deny the Muppets, especially in formal wear. I mean, really – who can resist this?

Source: thefw.com via Kelly on Pinterest

What were your favorite moments of the Oscars? Favorite red carpet looks? What wins were you happiest to see?

weekly gems

the 84th academy awards nominations

Yesterday was the day that movie and award show lovers alike were waiting for: the 84th Academy Award nominations were announced! I haven’t seen all the movies and/or performances that were nominated (a list of 2011 movies I saw and my ratings of them can be found here), but I still had plenty of thoughts on the nominations as I read through them:

Source: imdb.com via Kelly on Pinterest

Why was Moneyball nominated for so many awards?
Don’t get me wrong, I saw Moneyball and thoroughly enjoyed it. The acting was certainly of a high quality and the story was compelling (at least if you enjoy baseball, sports movies, underdog stories, or any combination of the three). However, I did not leave the theater thinking, “WOW, Brad Pitt’s acting in Moneyball was just AMAZING! Jonah Hill, he was just UNBELIEVABLE! Overall, that picture was OUTSTANDING!” In fact, if I was texting someone my opinion of the movie right after seeing it, I would not have written any adjectives in all-caps. Like I said, I did like Moneyball, and I do think Brad Pitt and Jonah Hill are great actors. I am just incredibly surprised Moneyball is being nominated for as many awards as it is. (As for film editing, I don’t know much about that to know if Moneyball deserves it, and the same for sound mixing, but I’m guessing it probably does since there were a great deal of baseball-games-in-action scenes).

Source: imdb.com via Kelly on Pinterest

Cars 2 wasn’t nominated for Best Animated Feature.
I have no opinion on whether or not Cars 2 is a good film; I haven’t seen it yet. I just found it very interesting that this was the first Pixar movie in what seems like forever that wasn’t nominated for the big award.

Source: imdb.com via Kelly on Pinterest

I apparently need to watch The Help again, because my memory must not be serving me well.
I LOVED The Help and think it deserves all the awards it can get (well, clearly, since I’m using all-caps to declare my adoration for it). I am beyond thrilled that Viola Davis is nominated and so is Octavia Spencer (in photo above). While I felt like the entire cast was fantastic and worked together beautifully, I did not expect anyone else to be nominated for an acting award. I’m surprised Jessica Chastain (in photo above) keeps getting nominated as well, over stellar performances by Bryce Dallas Howard, Allison Janney, and Sissy Spacek (who’s role was much too small to be nominated, but still well done). I also didn’t expect Emma Stone to be nominated for Best Actress or necessarily think she deserved a nomination over the actual nominees, but I do think she deserves as much recognition for her performance in that film as Jessica Chastain does for hers.

Source: imdb.com via Kelly on Pinterest

There are some serious sins of omission here.
How did Jonah Hill receive a Best Supporting Actor nomination for Moneyball over the great Alan Rickman (photo above) in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part II? And if Jonah Hill’s performance was deemed Oscar-worthy, how in the world was Joseph Gordon-Levitt’s performance in 50/50 not Oscar-worthy? How was Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part II not nominated for Best Picture when it was highly praised by critics and audiences alike, whereas a film like Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close has gotten lackluster reviews? Harry Potter should have, at the very least, been nominated for Best Adapted Screenplay in addition to the nominations it did receive. I was also greatly disappointed Super 8 was not nominated for a single Oscar, even though visual effects, film editing, sound mixing, etc., (though I don’t know much about those categories to rate their quality) greatly contributed to the overall impressiveness of the movie.

Source: imdb.com via Kelly on Pinterest

The Academy did a decent job this year of recognizing comedy that deserves its attention.
I am mega-pleased that Melissa McCarthy was nominated for Best Actress in a Supporting Role for Bridesmaids (pictured above). Believe me, I love everything about that movie, but Melissa McCarthy definitely stole the show. Whether or not she deserves an Oscar over Octavia Spencer in The Help is yet to be seen. I guess it will boil down to whether the Academy wants to give this year’s honors to an outstanding comedic performance or to an outstanding dramatic performance. That being said, I’m also psyched Bridesmaids was nominated for Best Original Screenplay. Lastly, I love that “Man or Muppet” (from The Muppets, of course!) was nominated for Best Original Song. The Muppets was quite possibly the best family, hands-down feel-good movie I saw all year (if not in the past few years) and it deserves some recognition. And recognition in the form of my favorite song from it, all the better! Plus, Jason Segel possibly performing it at the Oscars…with MUPPETS? Yes please!!
Which nominations do you support? What were your sins of omissions?

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