I Want to Wake Up in a City That Never Sleeps

new york new york

“These vagabond shoes are longing to stray.”
–Frank Sinatra, “New York, New York”

Come back every Tuesday for “The Bees Knees”, where I post the best quotes from my favorite movies, TV shows, songs, and books.

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14 Seriously Amazing Truffle Recipes

A few weeks ago I was just browsing the Internet at 1:00 am…as ya do…and I came across this:

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PEANUT. BUTTERSCOTCH. NUTELLA. BROWNIE BOMBS.

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I squee’ed a little bit, not gonna lie.

What resulted was a deep nose-dive into truffle recipes and I’m not sorry…not at all. I stayed up way too late planning and thinking about my holiday cookie tray and wondering what cookies I could “retire”, as it were, to make room for these amazing truffles.

Since I know a lot of you also bake and decorate for your families and for the holidays, here lies the result of my late-night conquest…14 seriously amazing truffle recipes that you’re going to want to pin, save, blog, tweet, post or print if you’re old-fashioned like me! 😉

14 Seriously Amazing Truffle Recipes

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Peanut, Butterscotch, Nutella Brownie Bombs

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Raspberry, Coconut and Chocolate Truffles

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Raspberry, White Chocolate and Pistachio Truffles

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Peppermint Truffles

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Cookie Dough Brownie Bites

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Raw Carrot Coconut Truffles

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Sugar Cookie Truffles

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Carrot Cake Truffles

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Chocolate Mint Truffles

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Caramel Stuffed White Chocolate Truffles

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Bourbon White Chocolate Truffles

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White Chocolate Hazelnut Truffles

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Cheesecake Truffles

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Easy Lemon Truffles

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Every Monday is a “Reci-bee” post, where I share my favorite recipes, recipe collections, and cooking and baking hints and tips. 

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Books about Your Favorite Animals, Part 1

I’m always fascinated to learn about our animal brothers. The emotional range of elephants, the level of commitment from lobsters, the strategy and hierarchy of a wolf pack…the animal kingdom never ceases to amaze me.

Whenever I’m in a reading slump and I don’t know what to read next, I tend to gravitate towards books about animals. The Secret Life of Lobsters was one I read on a whim…and was completely captivated by their social and romantic lives (I know, so scandalous!).

Never Cry Wolf was the book that motivated me to be more proactive about protecting this beautiful, smart, amazing creature…and The Elephant’s Secret Sense helped open my eyes to an animal that’s smarter, kinder, and more protective than most people I know.

Creating a list of books about animals is daunting to say the least…therefore, I have decided to break this up into parts…the first section being brought to you today! Here are a few great books to read if you want to learn about everything from the rat to the platypus.

Books about Your Favorite Animals, Part 1

favorite animal books

Lobsters
The Secret Life of Lobsters: How Fisherman and Scientists are Unraveling the Mysteries of Our Favorite Crustacean

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Elephants
The Elephant’s Secret Sense: The Hidden Life of the Wild Herds of Africa

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Grizzly Bears
The Lost Grizzlies: A Search for Survivors in the Wilderness of Colorado

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Wolves
Never Cry Wolf: The Groundbreaking Book that Changed How the World Looks at the Wolf

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Squid
Kraken: The Curious, Exciting, and Slightly Disturbing Science of Squid

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Seahorse
Poseidon’s Steed: The Story of Seahorses, from Myth to Reality

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Octopus
The Soul of an Octopus: A Surprising Exploration into the Wonder of Consciousness

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Crow
Gifts of the Crow: How Perception, Emotion, and Thought Allow Smart Birds to Behave Like Humans

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Bat
The Secret Lives of Bats: My Adventures with the World’s Most Misunderstood Mammals

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Pig
The Whole Hog: Exploring the Extraordinary Potential of Pigs

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Dog
How Dogs Love Us: A Neuroscientist and His Adopted Dog Decode the Canine Brain

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Giraffe
Tall Blondes

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Bees
Plan Bee: Everything You Ever Wanted to Know about the Hardest-Working Creatures on the Planet

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Pigeons
Pigeons: The Fascinating Saga of the World’s Most Revered and Reviled Bird

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Rats
Rats: Observations on the History and Habitat of the City’s Most Unwanted Inhabitants

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Cod
Cod: A Biography of the First Fish that Changed the World

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Tuna
Tuna: A Love Story

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Fox
Foxes Unearthed: A Story of Love and Loathing in Modern Britain

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Platypus
Platypus: The Extraordinary Story of How a Curious Creature Baffled the World

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Looking for a new book to read? Check in every Friday for a “Bee Happy” post, where I share reviews of books I’ve read or other book-themed lists.

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27 Batty Fun Facts about The Dark Knight

In about 4 days, The Dark Knight will be celebrating its 10th anniversary. Holy SHNIKIES, BATMAN!

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Starring the late Heath Ledger in one of the most iconic roles of his short, yet stunning, career (The Joker), The Dark Knight blew box offices away like:

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Still sitting at the top of the list of IMDb’s list of the best movies of all time (#3), The Dark Knight almost didn’t happen, as director Christopher Nolan didn’t want to create a sequel to his first dive into the Batman story, Batman Begins…but the idea of giving a story to one of the most classic and well-loved comic villains of all time was too great a challenge to leave behind.

As any native Chicago-dwelling Batman-loving girl will tell you, The Dark Knight holds a special place in the hearts of lots of nerdy Illinoisians…as the film was shot right in the heart of the city (Chicago = Gotham City FOREVER). Also starring Christian Bale as Batman, Michael Caine as Alfred, as well as Gary Oldman, Aaron Eckhart, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Nestor Carbonell, and Eric Roberts, The Dark Knight is arguably one of the better Batman films (though my heart still belongs to Tim Burton’s classic Batman).

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❤ SWOON! ❤

To celebrate its 10th anniversary, here are 27 BATTY Fun Facts about The Dark Knight!

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Feeling nostalgic? Take a look back at 14 Fun Facts about Tim Burton’s Batman!

27 Batty Fun Facts about The Dark Knight

The Dark Knight was not inspired by any ONE Batman story…in fact writers were inspired by several plot lines throughout the DC Comics series.

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For his role as The Joker, Heath Ledger locked himself away in a hotel room for weeks, experimenting with voices and mannerisms until he developed something he was satisfied with. The Sex Pistols and characters from A Clockwork Orange were among his inspirations.

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Originally director Chris Nolan had no intention to make a sequel to Batman Begins, but the idea of flushing out the character of The Joker kept him interested.

The only name on Nolan’s wish list to play The Joker was Heath Ledger.

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Throughout the production of The Dark Knight, Ledger kept a “Joker Diary”, where he would write stylized notes, clipped quotes and texts from inspiring characters, and lines from the script written in his own hand-writing.

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The role of the district attorney, which ultimately went to Maggie Gyllenhaal, was once under the hopeful eyes of fellow actresses Rachel McAdams and Emily Blunt.

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Fellow cast mate Michael Caine expressed concern that Nolan wouldn’t be able to find someone to top Jack Nicholson’s performance as the character of The Joker (from 1989’s Batman)…however, he came around when Ledger was cast, saying, “now that’s the one guy that could do it!”

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The licking-of-the-lips tick that The Joker possessed was mostly because the prosthetics, which extended into Ledger’s mouth, would loosen as he performed. He would lick his lips in an effort to keep them in place.

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Nolan wanted the truck-flipping scene (when Batman uses steel cables to flip The Joker’s 18-wheeler trailer) to happen for real…and it did…on a little street in Chicago.

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Christian Bale (Batman) was adamant about standing atop the Sears Tower in Chicago with his cape billowing around him. Bale actually performed several of his own stunts throughout his career as Batman.

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In the scene where The Joker is dressed up as a nurse, you can see that his name tag reads “Matilda”. Matilda is the name of Ledger’s daughter, born in 2005.

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The man who says, “we’re not intimidated by thugs” during The Joker’s raid on Bruce Wayne’s party, is Patrick Leahy, the Democratic US Senator from Vermont. A lifelong comic book fan, Leahy has actually appeared in five Batman films to date.

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Katie Holmes, who played district attorney Rachel Dawes in Batman Begins was replaced by Gyllenhaal after Holmes decided to star in Mad Money instead, which scored a measly 22% on Rotten Tomatoes. Bummer, Katie…

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Further speculation claims that Holmes actually left because her then-husband, Tom Cruise, was jealous of Christian Bale.

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Ledger actually designed the look of The Joker himself, using makeup he’d bought from a local drugstore. Nolan was so impressed that he tasked the makeup team to recreate it themselves.

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Within two days of its release, The Dark Knight was already ranked as the greatest film of all time by users on IMDb. It’s now sitting comfortably at position 3.

Ledger posthumously won a total of 32 Best Supporting Actor awards for his work on The Dark Knight, including the Oscar, Golden Globe, BAFTA, SAG and Critics’ Choice awards.

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The Batsuit Bale wore in the film was constructed from 200 unique pieces of rubber, fiberglass, metallic mesh, and nylon. It was constructed to give Bale more flexibility.

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Bruce Wayne drives a Lamborghini Murcielago in this movie. The Spanish word for “bat” is murcielago.

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Bruce Wayne’s penthouse was actually shot on the ground floor of an office building in downtown Chicago. During the daytime, the same space was re-dressed and used for Harvey Dent’s press conference scenes.

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A total of 39 cars were destroyed during production.

The Dark Knight was the first comic book movie to reach the $1 billion mark.

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Ledger actually interviewed fellow Joker alum, Jack Nicholson, about the role. Nicholson told him, “The role of being The Joker will haunt you, the role is so dark that you probably won’t be able to sleep.”

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The Dark Knight made more money in six days than Batman Begins made in its entire domestic run.

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The hospital that gets blown up in the film was an abandoned Brach’s candy factory in Chicago. The explosion actually triggered panicked calls to police from residents who feared a terrorist attack.

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James Gandolfini was considered for the role of gangster Sal Moroni, but it eventually went to Eric Roberts.

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Mike Engel, the reporter who is kidnapped by The Joker, is played by Anthony Michael Hall. You might know him from National Lampoon’s Vacation, 16 Candles, Weird Science, or my personal fave of his, The Breakfast Club.

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Sometimes you just need a little fun in your life! Check back every week for a new “Just Bee-cause” post, where I discuss everything from celebrity news to favorite videos and websites!

 

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Crocheted Grinch Doll

“Maybe Christmas,” he thought, “doesn’t come from a store…maybe Christmas, perhaps, means a little bit more.”

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Yes, I know it’s July…but YOU GUYS – that only means 6 more months until CHRISTMAS!!

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Don’t worry, I promise I’m not THAT excited…but I am excited to share with you this little crocheted Grinch doll that’s just waiting to liven up your holiday décor!

With a heart that’s 3x the size it should be and a little removable Santa hat to add some holiday cheer, this crocheted Grinch doll makes a splendiferous holiday gift for anyone on your list, Who’s and Grinches alike! Make one for yourself following this Crocheted Grinch Pattern* or buy this one fully made and ready to go at my Etsy shop (coming soon!)!

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*This pattern does NOT include the crocheted Santa hat, which I made on a whim or the crocheted heart, which can be found here. The original Grinch pattern also includes facial features, which I decided not to include on this doll.

Grinch Pattern: http://yarnwars.com/free-patterns-created-yarnwars/free-mr-grinch-inspired-doll-crochet-pattern/

Heart Pattern: http://www.dailycrochet.com/super-quick-and-easy-crochet-heart-amigurumi-pattern/ (Large heart made)

Or just buy this one on Etsy, COMING SOON! Stay tuned! 🙂

Celebrate creativity every Wednesday with a “Creativi-bee” post, where I share easy craft tutorials, project ideas, and craft collections.

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It’s Just Life

keep dancing

“It’s just life so keep dancing through.”
-Wicked: The Musical

Come back every Tuesday for “The Bees Knees”, where I post the best quotes from my favorite movies, TV shows, songs, and books.

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20 Delicious DIY Ice Pops

Cool down this summer with these 20 Delicious DIY Ice Pops! Made using fruit, yogurt, and even veggies (don’t knock it til ya try it!), these homemade ice pops are sure to be well-loved by kids and adults alike.

Use a traditional ice pop mold, or if you find yourself without one, you could also make these ice pops using plastic cups, ice cube trays, or a muffin pan.

20 Delicious DIY Ice Pops

diy-ice-pops

  1. Mango Yogurt Ice Pops
  2. Easy Fruity Ice Pops
  3. Dinosaur Ice Pops
  4. Mango Chia Ice Pops
  5. No-Waste Sugar-Free Ice Pops
  6. Strawberries and Cream Ice Pops
  7. Berry Ginger Ice Pops
  8. Red, White, and Blue Ice Pops
  9. Yogurt and Blueberry Ice Pops
  10. Go Green Smoothie Ice Pops
  11. Strawberry Mint Ice Pops
  12. Strawberry Yogurt Ice Pops
  13. Mango Ice Pops
  14. Peanut Butter Banana Ice Pops
  15. Berry Ice Pops
  16. Root Beer Float Ice Pops
  17. Cherry Fro-Yo Ice Pops
  18. Fruit n’ Veggie Ice Pops
  19. Key Lime Ice Pops
  20. Strawberry Mango Gin and Tonic Ice Pops

Every Monday is a “Reci-bee” post, where I share my favorite recipes, recipe collections, and cooking and baking hints and tips. 

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