Top 10 Ralph Waldo Emerson Quotes

One cool day in 1830 in the state of Massachusetts, a group of friends got together to discuss new ideas in philosophy…you know, as friends do. Hinduism, Buddhism, and other Asian and German religions were making their way to the United States, and several Americans – including this group of hooligans – found their ideologies quite interesting.

Inspired by the beliefs surrounding the power of the individual and personal freedom, this group of friends created the Transcendentalist Movement, led primarily by one Ralph Waldo Emerson.

Emerson, along with his friend Henry David Thoreau, brought to life a movement that encouraged writers and poets to embrace these new-found Eastern philosophies in their work. Both Thoreau and Emerson wrote extensively about the importance of solitude and nature, while Margaret Fuller, who wrote Women in the Nineteenth Century in 1845, was and is thought to be one of the founders of modern day feminism.

The Transcendentalist writers became important influences for other poets and novelists like Walt Whitman, Emily Dickinson and Louisa May Alcott. Emerson himself was also thought to influence Friedrich Nietzsche, often thought to be one of the best writers of all time. Though the transcendentalist movement only lasted a few decades, its core ideas still influence political activists, environmentalists and people interested in alternative religion.

Today just happens to be Ralph Waldo Emerson’s 215th birthday. In honor of his work as a poet, lecturer, writer and philosopher, here are 10 of my personal favorite Emerson quotes.

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Top 10 Ralph Waldo Emerson Quotes

EMERSON1“The earth laughs in flowers.”

EMERSON2“The mind, once stretched by a new idea, never returns to its original dimensions.”

emerson3“It’s not the length of life, but the depth.”

emerson4“I cannot remember the books I’ve read any more than the meals I have eaten; even so, they have made me.”

emerson5“Do not go where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail.”

emerson6“People do not seem to realize that their opinion of the world is also a confession of their character.”

emerson7“For every minute you are angry, you lose sixty seconds of happiness.”

emerson8“To be yourself in a world that is constantly trying to make you something else is the greatest accomplishment.”

EMERSON9“Our chief want is someone who will inspire us to be what we know we could be.”

emerson10“Finish each day and be done with it. You have done what you could. Some blunders and absurdities no doubt crept in; forget them as soon as you can. Tomorrow is a new day. You shall begin it serenely and with too high a spirit to be encumbered with your old nonsense.”

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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16 Fun Facts about John Candy

It’s hard not to have a sweet spot for John Candy.

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Commonly known as one of the nicest guys in showbiz, John Candy was a powerhouse comedian, starring in some of the most classic films of the 1980s and 90s. I’m talkin’ Planes, Trains, and Automobiles, Space Balls, Home Alone, Uncle Buck, and several more.

A big man with a big personality and an even bigger heart, Candy was a loyal, generous and caring friend…paling around with such goofs as Eugene Levy, Bill Murray, Catherine O’Hara, and of course, John Hughes.

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While working on Wagons East in 1994, Candy suffered a fatal heart attack in his sleep. His death was a major loss to the world, and we were robbed of so much light and laughter the night he died.

I simply adore Candy’s movies and I wish his life wasn’t cut so short (he was only 43 when he died). Not surprisingly, Candy was a somewhat quiet man, but could easily light up any room he entered. Every time I watch a John Candy movie, I’m instantly in a better mood and it sucks to think of all the stuff that will just never be :(…

…but we can all relish in what once was with these 16 Fun Facts about John Candy!

16 Fun Facts about John Candy

Not surprisingly, John Candy was thought to be one of the nicest guys in showbiz.

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Part of Candy’s “trademark”, so to speak, was his size. A big guy for most of his life, Candy usually weighed between 275 and 300 pounds for the vast majority of his life.

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Director John Hughes had a sweet tooth for Candy (hahahaha). In fact, Candy appeared in more Hughes’ films than any other actor, including Uncle Buck, Home Alone, Planes, Trains, and Automobiles and The Great Outdoors.

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Candy was part-owner of the CFL team, The Toronto Argonauts, alongside Wayne Gretzky and Bruce Mcnall.

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He would often turn down roles if he thought one of his friends would be better in it. He said no to both Honey, I Shrunk the Kids and Ghostbusters because he thought his friend, Rick Moranis, would be a better fit.

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Despite his amazing sense of humor, Candy was never a member of Saturday Night Live, though he was offered the option to join several times. Candy was a member of the Canadian comedy show, SCTV and didn’t want to appear disloyal to his cast mates.

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He was however a member of the Chicago-based comedy troupe, Second City, alongside Harold Ramis, Eugene Levy, Bill Murray and Rick Moranis.

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Longtime friend Catherine O’Hara delivered a eulogy at his funeral.

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After Candy’s passing, Steve Martin – who appeared alongside Candy in Planes, Trains, and Automobiles – moved in with Candy’s family to comfort them during their mourning. That’s true friendship right there.

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Like many before and after him, Candy sensed bad fortune before his death. Before flying to Mexico to start work on Wagons East, Candy called a close friend saying he didn’t want to go due to a strong feeling that something bad was going to happen. He died in his sleep of a heart attack just days later.

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In 2006 Candy was pictured on one of four 51-cent Canadian commemorative postage stamps honoring “Canadians in Hollywood”.

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Candy also launched his own radio show in 1989. The show appeared on Los Angeles station KNX-FM and was called Radio Kandy. The two-hour show featured Second City comedians, as well as musical guests.

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According to one chef who tried to do the math, in order to make the huge pancakes that Candy made in his beloved film, Uncle Buck, you’ll need: 2 cups flour, 1 cup sugar, 2 cups milk, 9 medium eggs, 1/2 cup melted unsalted butter, and about 1 tablespoon vegetable oil…PER PANCAKE.

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Candy’s kids, Chris and Jen, have said their favorite character their dad has played was half of the Schmenge brothers (alongside Eugene Levy).

Candy’s kids also look just like him…I mean JUST like him.

Candy’s final meal was a late lasagna dinner.

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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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11 Crafty Food Ideas for a Grown-Up Disney Princess Party

Every girl may dream of becoming a Disney princess, but not every girl can…

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Not even ELSA made the final cut, you guys. The stakes are high.

Just like real life, becoming royalty in the world of Disney requires certain qualifications:

  • An Official Disney Princess must have a primary role in a Disney/Pixar animated feature film
  • An Official Disney Princess must be human or mostly human (Ariel)
  • An Official Disney Princess cannot appear primarily in a sequel or commercial failure

Some female protagonists, even those that hold the “princess” title, may not be included in the Official Disney Princess lineup. This could be because of one of several reasons: they are not marketable, their film did poorly at the box office, they are too young, they are not human, etc. In the case of Elsa and Anna, their franchise (Frozen) was so successful on its own that Disney figured they didn’t need to be part of the lineup. Tough break, ladies. Apparently it IS lonely at the top.

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Those lucky enough to make the cut were: Jasmine (Aladdin), Rapunzel (Tangled), Snow White (Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs), Mulan (Mulan), Aurora (Sleeping Beauty), Cinderella (Cinderella), Pocahontas (Pocahontas), Tiana (The Princess and the Frog), Belle (Beauty and the Beast), Arielle (The Little Mermaid) and Merida (Brave). For the rest of us poor, unfortunate souls, we can only dream of joining the official ranks!

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One way to pretend you’re BFF’s with Mulan and Belle is to have a grown-up Disney Princess party! With these grown-up treats, you can create a whole new world of magic and childhood giddiness! Just remember to wrap everything up by midnight…mostly because, let’s be honest, we’re all gonna be passed out anyway…

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11 Crafty Food Ideas for a Grown-Up Disney Princess Party

Jasmine
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Use the flavor of Jasmine to ice these delicious Vanilla Cupcakes with Jasmine Buttercream. Hopefully everyone can try one before Abu snatches them away!

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Belle
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Entice guests to the west side of your kitchen with these blooming Apple Roses. A soft sprinkle of confectioners’ sugar makes these sweet flowers irresistible to curious minds.

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Rapunzel
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She may have been trapped in a tower, but home girl certainly knows how to work a skillet! Serve up these tasty Rapunzel Braids in a cast iron skillet…or use the skillet to make a decadent chocolate chip cookie to enjoy with friends (or by yourself!).

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Ariel
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Life is better under the sea…and these Oyster Pearl Cookies are a sweet bite of better living! Don’t forget to serve them with a dinglehopper!

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Tiana
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Nothing says New Orleans like beignets. Coated with sweet confectioners’ sugar and a delightful mess to eat, these southern staples will help you catch your man in no time!

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Snow White
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This Dutch Apple Pie certainly isn’t poisonous…though you might want to tell people it is so there’s more to eat for yourself! Topped with tasty vanilla (or cinnamon) ice cream, this pie is a must for any princess-themed party!

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Cinderella
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These little Clementine Pumpkins can be eaten before, during, and after midnight without any risk!

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Sleeping Beauty
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Here’s a fun play on Sleeping Beauty’s pink/blue dress. These Pink and Blue Macarons are so cute and colorful…and they’d be even more on point if you mix the batter colors before piping your cookies!

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Merida
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These Big Brown Bear Cookies are perfect for Merida fans! Use a brownie mix to make your cookies, then add nails with slivered almonds for a ferocious cookie worthy of royalty.

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Pocahontas
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First of all, #hairgoals. Second, Native American Fry Bread is a great way to honor this beautiful Disney princess. A great accompaniment to stew or soup, this fry bread may not be all the colors of the wind, but it’s all the flavors of delicious.

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Mulan
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Nothing goes better with tea than these delicious Chinese Almond Cookies. A traditional Chinese dessert, these sweet and crunchy cookies are sure to bring honor to your party!

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

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Chandler Bing-a-Ling-a-Ling!

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“I’m not great at the advice…can I interest you in a sarcastic comment?”
-FRIENDS

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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Narutomaki Cookies (Fish Cake Cookies)

No, no, no…these aren’t made with fish or taste like fish…so calm down! 🙂

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If you’ve ever gone out for an authentic bowl of ramen, you may have seen a little white and pink swirly “cake” in your bowl. This little fish cake, or Narutomaki, often mimics the texture and color of the meat of lobster, crab and other shellfish. They’re actually way more delicious than you may think (they’re not fishy at all) and add great flavor and color to your ramen.

The pink swirl in these “fish cakes” are meant to symbolize the Naruto whirlpools of the Naruto Strait near Japan…plus they’re just so darn cute!

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Often about the size of a quarter, these fish cakes are brought to life in a much bigger and sweeter way with these cute Narutomaki cookies. Made using my favorite sugar cookie dough and a sweet royal icing, these cookies are the perfect ending to any Asian or ramen-inspired meal! 😉

Narutomaki Cookies (Fish Cake Cookies)

Ingredients:

  • 1 stick (1/2 cup) unsalted butter, softened
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 tablespoon light corn syrup
  • 1 tablespoon grated lemon zest
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2¼ cups all-purpose flour

For Icing:

  • 1 lb. confectioners’ sugar
  • 3/8 cup milk
  • 3/8 cup light corn syrup
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla or almond extract
  • Pink food coloring

Directions:

In large bowl, beat butter, sugar and salt until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes.

Reduce speed to medium; add egg. Beat until combined. Beat in corn syrup, lemon zest and vanilla. Reduce speed to low and add flour in two parts. Shape dough into two disks, wrap and refrigerate at least 1 hour. The dough might be crumbly, but use your hands to form it back together.

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Heat oven to 350 degrees F. Roll out 1 disk of dough to ¼ in. thick. Using cutter (my scalloped cutter was about 2 in. wide), cut out shapes. Transfer to baking sheet. Bake until edges are lightly browned, about 10 – 12 minutes. Transfer to cooling grid; cool completely. Repeat with remaining dough. Using my 2 in. cutter, I got 21 cookies.

To make icing, combine confectioners’ sugar, milk, corn syrup and flavoring of choice. I used almond, but you could also use vanilla. Mix on medium to start, then on high until combined. Add more confectioners’ sugar to make icing medium-stiff consistency.

Prepare a decorating bag with a round tip 2 or 3 and about ½ cup stiff consistency icing. Outline your cookies. Let dry, about 15-20 minutes (use a wet paper towel or napkin to cover the unused icing and keep it from drying out).

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Transfer any remaining icing back into the bowl.

Using milk (add 1 teaspoon at a time – a little goes a long way), thin the icing to thin/medium consistency.

These next few steps need to happen somewhat quickly, so read ahead before jumping in!

Prepare a decorating bag with a round tip 5 or 6 (or use a cut bag) and thinned icing. Fill in your cookies, using a toothpick to pop any bubbles and spread icing around cookie. Repeat covering remaining icing with wet paper towel to prevent drying. Transfer any remaining icing back into bowl.

Using pink icing color, tint the remaining icing light pink. Prepare a decorating bag with round tip 2 or 3 and pink icing. Pipe swirl in wet icing and let settle.

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Let cookies dry, at least 24 hours, before packaging.

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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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The Portable Obituary Book Review

Whether you’re as beautiful as Grace Kelly, as talented as Mozart, or as rich as Cornelius Vanderbilt, nothing can save you from death.

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It’s the great unifier, the one thing we all have in common. The rich and famous die…the poor and unknown die. It’s terrifying and nerve-racking and sometimes quite unexpected…but maybe there’s some strange, weird comfort in knowing how those before us met their Maker, so to speak. Maybe knowing how Elvis died, how Bob Marley, Billie Holiday, Henry Ford, Marilyn Monroe, Babe Ruth, Thomas Edison, and Ernest Hemingway all passed will help us cope with our own mortality, or at least will give us some insight in what not do to in order to prolong the time we have left.

In his morbid, yet ironically entertaining book, The Portable Obituary: How the Famous, Rich, and Powerful Really Died, author Michael Largo explores the life and death of more than 1,100 famous people (and animals), diving deep into how they died and what actions in their lives lead them to that point.

Ranging in scope from Jesus to Louis Armstrong, The Portable Obituary covers a wide variety of celebrity. Actors, actresses, singers, dancers, and sports heroes are all mentioned, as well as inventors, writers, artists, and presidents. The book is organized alphabetically, with random black and white photos peppering the pages (though the photos lack description, which ended up being confusing in some places).

Similar to his other books, The Portable Obituary can be used as a reference guide or read cover to cover. Each celebrity gets about a 1 to 2 paragraph installment, so reading it cover to cover actually goes pretty quickly. And if you’re worried about it being too dour, Largo does put in little quips and fun stories to help lighten the mood.

If nothing else, this book is a fascinating look into how many musicians die from alcohol abuse and how many celebrities die within weeks of their birthday. It’s ironic to see how the inventors of such fun things as bubble gum and popsicles met such sad endings…and how careless practices in filming locations led to several actors and crew members developing deadly cancers.

From gun shots to gluttony…car crashes to cancers, The Portable Obituary is an interesting, albeit depressing, look into what made our late icons what they are today – dead!

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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32 Fun Facts about Sex and the City

Are you a Carrie, Samantha, Charlotte or Miranda? Whether you’re a die-hard fan of this classic HBO rom-com or you’re just coming into the TV series because of the recent (and less classic) feature films, there’s no denying that Sex and the City has serious style.

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Filled with fabulous fashion, delicious brunches, and actually pretty helpful – albeit strange – sex advice, Sex and the City was a love letter to New York and its people. Starring Sarah Jessica Parker and Kim Cattrall, SATC was based on a book of the same name, written by columnist Candace Bushnell.

It ran for six seasons (1998 – 2004) and was nominated for a slew of awards and accolades. If you were lucky enough as a little girl to have HBO growing up, there’s no denying you saw at least some of these episodes at a sleepover or after your parents fell asleep, ami right?

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I, however, was not lucky enough to have HBO, so I was a late fan of SATC…but I have seen all the episodes (and the movies – meh) and I genuinely love how they make no apologizes for being a serious guilty pleasure.

This summer (June 6th to be exact), Sex and the City will be celebrating the 20th anniversary of its first episode. If you loved Carrie’s witty love advice, her loooong list of romantic suitors (and recognizing them in other things – I’m looking at you, John Slattery), or her amazing sense of fashion, you’re going to love these 32 Fun Facts about Sex and the City!

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32 Fun Facts about Sex and the City

Sex and the City is based on a weekly column that appeared in The Observer. Writer Candace Bushnell created Carrie Bradshaw as her alter ego when she published the book, Sex and the City, which is a compilation of her columns.

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Though Carrie Bradshaw “knows good sex”, she was the only girl with a clause in her contract stating she would never appear nude on screen.

Mr. Big was inspired by Bushnell’s ex and former magazine executive, Ron Galotti.

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Show creator Darren Star only paid Bushnell $60,000 for the rights to her columns.

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In 2012, the apartment where Carrie Bradshaw “lived” sold for $9.65 million.

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The famous tutu Sarah Jessica Parker wears in the opening credits of the show cost a whopping $5.00 and was plucked out of a bargain bin. It now hangs framed in Micheal Patrick King’s office.

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Kim Cattrall turned down the role of Samantha twice before finally being convinced to take the part.

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Before working on SATC, Darren Star also worked on Beverly Hills, 90210 (the O.G.) and Melrose Place.

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Natasha, Mr. Big’s wife, was almost always shown wearing white. That was to specifically convey that her personality was very “vanilla”.

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After Carrie and Miranda share a cupcake outside Magnolia Bakery, the small cupcakery had to hire bouncers to control the daily crowds that would swamp them with orders day after day.

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Not surprisingly, all the cocktails were fake. The famous Cosmos were just water and food coloring and the wine was either ginger ale or grape juice.

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Mr. Big’s real name was never revealed throughout the entire TV series. Carrie never called Mr. Big “Big” to his face…actually she never called him anything! It wasn’t until the first SATC movie was released that it was revealed that his name was John.

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Sarah Jessica Parker got to keep about 70% of the clothes she wore on the show. This one was one of my fave’s!

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None of the four main girls in SATC repeated an outfit throughout the entire duration of the show…that is except that fur jacket in the last scene, which also appeared in the very first episode.

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SATC was the first cable series to win the Emmy for Best Comedy Series.

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The most expensive dress Carrie wore was the Atelier Versace Couture ‘Mille Feuille’ gown, which she wore when she was in Paris awaiting her date with Aleksandr Petrovsky. The dress cost $80,000.

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Cynthia Nixon (Miranda) does not have pierced ears. She wore clip-on earrings for almost every episode.

Carrie’s address, 245 East 73rd Street, is fake and does not exist. Actually every address given for any of the women is fake. There is, however, a tour you can take to see all the filming locations.

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Kristen Davis (Charlotte York) was the only actress of the main four not to win a solo award for her performance on SATC.

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Matthew McConaughey’s role in the episode, “Escape from New York”, was originally written for Alec Baldwin…but he turned it down…as did George Clooney and Warren Beatty. McConaughey was next on the list.

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Alec Baldwin was also the first choice for Mr. Big.

A lot of the artwork in Aleksandr Petrovsky’s home actually belonged to the actor who played him, Mikhail Baryshnikov.

Baryshnikov is actually a ballet legend and has been dubbed the one of the greatest ballet dancers in history.

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SATC won 7 of its 54 Emmy nominations, 8 of its 24 Golden Globe nominations and 3 of its 11 Screen Actors Guild Award nominations.

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The young red-headed boy who plays Brady in the TV series is the same boy who ended up playing Brady in the SATC film.

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All the ladies lobbied for more diversity on the show, no one more than SJP herself.

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When Carrie bumps into Aidan carrying his baby in season 6, the baby was actually Parker’s child.

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At the beginning of Charlotte’s wedding to Trey, a Scottish funeral dirge is played. This is to symbolize Charlotte entering a bad marriage.

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In 2001, SJP became an executive producer of the show, bumping up her paycheck to $3 million an episode.

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Did you hate that Bradshaw and Mr. Big ended up together at the end? Well, maybe you can get some comfort in the fact that even Bushnell admits that Carrie and Big wouldn’t have ended up together in real life. As a matter of fact, they weren’t supposed to on the show, either…but fickle romance got in the way…

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Carrie asks 92 questions in her columns throughout the series. Her final question appears in the third to last episode of the series when she moves to Paris. In this episode, she asks, “is it time to stop questioning?” The final two episodes are void of any questions.

The final episode of the series didn’t finish filming until four days before it was scheduled to air.

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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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