Monthly Archives: January 2017

Truth and Lies

liesandtruths

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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5 Beautiful Winter Salads

Oh salad…how I love and hate you.

parks and recreation parks and rec ron swanson salad vegetables

I know they’re health and all that, but seriously…WHERE’S THE FLAVOR??  Salads often come drenched in dressing and are packed with veggies that are bland and water-logged.  No. Thanks.

If I’m gonna jump aboard the salad train, I’m making it myself…and these five stunningly beautiful winter salads are just the ticket!

Packed with flavor, color, and nutrients, these salads make great lunches or dinners…or could even be served alongside a chicken breast or pork chop.

The great thing about these winter salads is that they’re packed with seasonal ingredients…no where will you find meely tomatoes and soggy cucumbers that are all out of season…these salads feature bright and juicy pomegranate seeds, seasonal nuts and berries, Brussels sprouts, kale, and a whole slew of other vegetables that you can easily find at the store during these cold winter months.

So keep in mind that not all salad is created alike.  You CAN have a healthy salad that actually tastes GOOD with these tasty and easy winter salad recipes!

winter-salads

Warm Brussels Sprouts and Pear Saladsalad1

Holiday Honeycrisp Salad
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Butternut Squash and Bacon Salad
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Mandarin Pomegranate Spinach Saladsalad4

Pomegranate Pecan Salad with Cinnamon Applessalad5

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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13 Books to Read Before They Become Movies – 2017 Edition

It seems like books of all genres are getting the Hollywood treatment. Just last year we’ve seen several books come to live on the big screen, and 2017 will be no exception. The Circle, Captain Underpants, The Dark Tower series, and The Bell Jar are just SOME of the books that will be turned into screenplays in 2017…and honestly, I’m really looking forward to a few of these!

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But, like any true student of literature, I just must read the book first…so I’m powering through a few of these books before they are released as movies later this year (I’m on The Circle now – this one is gonna be intense).

So if you’re looking to kill some time between now and when Beauty and the Beast comes out – because let’s be serious, that’s happening – here are 13 books that are getting the movie treatment sometime in 2017!

13 Books to Read Before They Become Movies – 2017 Edition

The Zookeeper’s Wife
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This true story follows the keepers of the Warsaw Zoo, who help save hundreds of people from the Nazis during World War II by smuggling them into empty zoo cages.
Movie Release:  March 2017

Wonder
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Wonder tells the story of Auggie Pullman, a boy who is born with a facial deformity, and his struggle to fit into his new school.
Movie Release:  April 2017

The Lost City of Z
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This national best-seller tells the story of how a British explorer got lost searching for an ancient, fabled civilization in the Amazon in 1925.
Movie Release:  April 2017

The Circle
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A young woman named Mae Holland gets a job at a tech-savvy company (most likely modeled after Google), and learns things both amazing and scary about her new job and the company she works for.
Movie Release:  April 2017

Before I Fall
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After Sam dies on February 12th, she’s forced to relive that day over and over again, eventually unraveling the mystery of her death.
Movie Release:  March 2017

The Dark Tower
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Stephen King’s magnum opus is a series that follows a gunslinger through a magical society, looking for the mysterious Dark Tower.
Movie Release:  July 2017

The Mountain Between Us
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Two strangers must rely on each other to survive after a plane crashes in the wilderness and leaves them stranded.
Movie Release:  October 2017*
*Just a PSA that this movie is set to star Idris Elba and Kate Winslet…so, you know, despite the content, it will be just beautiful to watch!

Murder on the Orient Express
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This classic mystery follows a detective as he pursues a murder on a famous train.
Movie Release:  November 2017

The Nightingale
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Two sisters in France end up in different positions during World War II; one fights with the resistance, the other becomes a prisoner.
Movie Release:  TBD

Thank You For Your Service
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A non-fiction account following the lives of soldiers who have come back from overseas, most still suffering from PTSD.
Movie Release:  TBD

The Glass Castle
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A memoir of Jeannette Walls, chronicling her bizarre upbringing and her strained relationship with her parents.
Movie Release:  TBD

The Bell Jar
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The story of author Sylvia Plath’s battle with mental illness.
Movie Release:  TBD

Big Little Lies
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Things take a turn for a group of moms whose perfect lives begin to unravel.
Movie Release:  TBD*
*This is actually slotted to be a mini-series on HBO.

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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The Wonder Years…Where Are They Now?

We all have TV shows that have changed our lives – shows that stick with us forever and that we can go back and re-watch over and over again without exhaustion.  When I think of shows under this category, a few come to mind…but none as prominent as The Wonder Years.

I don’t know if it’s because I was Kevin Arnold’s age when I started watching the show…or maybe it’s because it was a show my dad and I watched together, but The Wonder Years remains, to this day, one of the best series I’ve seen on television.  I identified with it when I was 10, and then fell in love with it in a completely different way when I watched the series again when I turned 30.  Though the music and the clothes might date it a little, the themes of this show still ring true even in today’s day and age.

Starring a very young Fred Savage, The Wonder Years tells the story of a boy named Kevin Arnold.  Together with his childhood friends, Winnie Cooper (Danica McKellar) and Paul Pfeiffer (Josh Saviano), Kevin learns valuable lessons about love, loss, family, and understanding.  The show brings controversial themes to the forefront, including war, violence, death, abuse, drugs, and alcohol…and through the voice of a narrator, eventually revealed to be Kevin as an adult, we learn all about these magical years of wonder and adventure as we grow and learn with Kevin and his friends.

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The Wonder Years gained valuable praise during its run (1988 – 1993) and won a Primetime Emmy Award after only six episodes.  In 2016, Rolling Stone ranked it #63 on its list of the 100 Greatest TV Shows of All Time and the cast of The Wonder Years has remained very close to this day…several of them even acting in other projects together.

It’s a format that worked well for TV, especially for Savage’s younger brother, Ben, and his successful show, Boy Meets World.  Though much more upbeat in nature, Boy Meets World has a similar makeup, with similar characters in similar situations.  Both shows are staples in the lineup of the best coming-of-age TV shows and both hold loyal and true fandoms made up of viewers of all ages.

It’s been about 24 years now since The Wonder Years ended…and the cast that once made up this groundbreaking show remains active.  Check in below to see what’s happening with Kevin, Winnie, Jack, Wayne, and the rest of the characters we’ve grown to know and love through this amazing television classic.

The Cast of The Wonder Years…Where Are They Now?

Fred Savage
Kevin Arnold

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OMG HE LOOKS THE SAME!!
Fred Savage, a native of Illinois, grew up in the northern suburbs of Chicago before moving out to LA.  Before being cast in The Wonder Years, Savage had several small roles in movies and TV, perhaps most notably in The Princess Bride.  For his work on The Wonder Years, Savage received two Golden Globe nominations and two Emmy nominations for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series and was the youngest actor ever to receive both honors (he was 13 at the time).  After The Wonder Years ended, he did mostly guest spots on TV and film, including a cameo on his younger brother’s show, Boy Meets World.  In 2015, Savage returned to acting with the FOX series, The Grinder.  Throughout the early 2000’s, Savage also dabbled in directing, standing behind the camera to produce several TV episodes, including work on the short-lived NBC sitcom, Working.  He’s also directed episodes of Modern Family and 2 Broke Girls.  Currently, Savage serves as a producer on the hilarious show, It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia.  Unlike Kevin Arnold, Savage actually married his childhood sweetheart in 2004 and they have two children together.

Danica McKellar
Winnie Cooper

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Oh, Danica…the ultimate in beauty and brains.  Scoring the role of Winnie in The Wonder Years in her early teens, McKellar found it difficult to transition into adult acting after having so much of her childhood dedicated to one job.  After The Wonder Years ended, McKellar had several guest roles in various TV shows and appeared in a couple Lifetime TV movies.  She returned briefly to TV with roles on The West Wing and How I Met Your Mother and even did some work as a voice actress in a variety of video games.  Outside of acting, McKellar got her Bachelor of Science degree in Mathematics, graduating summa cum laude, from UCLA in 1998.  She’s a huge proponent of the importance of mathematics in education, especially for young women, and has authored four books on the subject:  Math Doesn’t Suck: How to Survive Middle School Math Without Losing Your Mind or Breaking a Nail (a New York Times bestseller), Kiss My Math: Showing Pre-Algebra Who’s Boss, Hot X: Algebra Exposed, and Girls Get Curves: Geometry Takes Shape.  Her latest book, a children’s book titled Goodnight, Numbers, is available for pre-ordering now.  And for those who are obsessive like me, McKellar, Savage, and Saviano all still talk and keep in touch!

Josh Saviano
Paul Pfeiffer

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Josh Saviano, who played Kevin’s best friend, Paul Pfeiffer, throughout the series, grew up in New York and New Jersey before being cast in The Wonder Years.  His role as Paul is actually one of his few TV or movie roles.  He stopped acting after The Wonder Years to continue his education at Yale University, where he studied Political Science.  After graduating in 1998, he decided to enter Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law in August of the same year.  He passed the bar and joined the law firm of Morrison Cohen LLP in New York, becoming a Senior Counsel in 2011 and Partner in 2013.  He left Morrison Cohen two years later and founded two start-up endeavors:  the JDS Legal law firm and the celebrity brand consulting agency, Act 3 Advisors.  Saviano returned to acting briefly in 2014 and 2015 to play a lawyer on the NBC series, Law & Order: Special Victims Unit.

Jason Hervey
Wayne Arnold

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Another actor who had various childhood roles before The Wonder Years, Jason Hervey got his start with small parts in several popular films, including Back to the Future, Pee-Wee’s Big Adventure, and Diff’rent Strokes.  His big break came when he was cast as Kevin’s big brother, Wayne, on The Wonder Years, a role which helped Hervey launch a somewhat successful voice-acting career.  While his on-screen credits are few and far between these days, Hervey does maintain ties to the entertainment industry as the producer of various sports-themed videos and specials, most notably with the World Championship Wrestling channel.  From 2001 to 2003, Hervey served as the Senior Vice President of Media Communications for HealthSouth Corporation in Alabama.  He was involved in a fraud scandal and later sued his employer, demanding $300,000 in compensation.

Dan Lauria
Jack Arnold

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A Vietnam War veteran, Dan Lauria served as an officer in the US Marine Corps; ironically, he served at the same time his character on The Wonder Years was shipped off to serve in the Korean War.  Best known for his role as one of the greatest TV dads of our age, Lauria has also had several roles in various TV shows and on and off-Broadway stage productions.  In 2010, he appeared as Vince Lombardi in the Broadway play, Lombardi and was cast as Jean Shepherd in the 2012 Broadway production of A Christmas Story: The Musical.  Most recently, Lauria can be seen in the FOX series, Pitch.

Alley Mills
Norma Arnold

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Another native of Chicago, IL, Alley Mills starred as the loving mother, Norma Arnold, on The Wonder Years.  Since its end, Mills has had recurring roles in various soap operas, including Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman and The Bold and the Beautiful.  Outside of her work on the soap opera circuit, Mills has been pretty quiet.  She married actor Orson Bean in 1993 and currently lives in LA.

Olivia d’Abo
Karen Arnold

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Known for her role as Kevin’s rebellious hippie sister, Karen, Olivia d’Abo is a British actress who starred on The Wonder Years for the first four of its six seasons.  She had two guest appearances in the final two seasons, as well.  After her work on The Wonder Years, d’Abo had a recurring role in the NBC series, Law & Order: Criminal Intent and has been cast in numerous supporting roles in other TV programs and films, including The Spirit of ’76, The Big Green, and The Twilight Zone.  She also appeared in the 2005 Broadway production of The Odd Couple alongside Matthew Broderick and Nathan Lane.  Like her fellow The Wonder Years cast members, d’Abo has also done a fair share of voice acting and has lent her voice to several video game characters.  Like Karen Arnold, d’Abo is also a singer-songwriter and guitarist.  She has composed music for several movie soundtracks, including the song “Broken” from the movie, Loving Annabelle.  Her debut album, Not TV, was released in July of 2008.  Most recently, d’Abo was in the 2016 films, Blue Weekend and the made-for-TV film, Inspired to Kill.

Daniel Stern
Narrator/Adult Kevin Arnold

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Yes, yes that’s Marv from Home Alone.  I know, I know!!  You’ll never look at The Wonder Years in the same way again!  After a variety of small successful films, Stern was cast as the narrator/adult Kevin Arnold on The Wonder Years.  Ironically, both he and Fred Savage appeared in the film, Little Monsters, with Stern playing Arnold’s father.  Stern also directed several episodes of The Wonder Years and would go on to direct other shows, including the CBS series, Danny.  Currently, Stern works as an artist, specializing in bronze sculpture.  He’s created art for public projects in San Diego, Agoura Hills, and Pasadena.  He is also the artist in residence at Studio Channel Islands Art Center in Camarillo.  Him and his wife have started several arts commissions and clubs and, in 2009, President Barak Obama awarded him the highest honor for volunteerism, the President’s “Call to Service” Award.  Stern now owns a 500-acre cattle ranch in California’s central valley.

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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Sweet Notebook Paper Goodie Bags

My dad was a sucker for Valentine’s Day. He always showered my mom with cards and gifts and would get us kids little Valentine’s for our lunches.

I loved getting little Valentine’s from my dad, and with the holiday of love on the horizon, these Sweet Notebook Paper Goodie Bags make wonderful Valentine’s Day treat holders!

notebook-paper-bags

Great for filling with candy, cookies, or just a sweet love letter, these adorable paper bags are super easy to make and only require a handful of supplies.

One sheet of notebook paper will make two bags, so don’t be surprised if you create a whole bunch of bags in less than a few hours!

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Also fun for birthday party favors or just for wrapping a simple gift for someone, these cute paper goodie bags are just as fun for kids as they are for adults!

Sweet Notebook Paper Goodie Bags

Materials:

  • Notebook paper (1 sheet will make 2 goodie bags)
  • Scissors
  • Glue
  • Stickers

paper-bag-stepouts

Directions:

  1. Cut your notebook paper in half hamburger style.  Fold short side of the notebook paper up to the red margin line.
  2. Bring other side of paper up to folded line, tucking it underneath the flap.  Fold.
  3. Place glue on underside of flap.
  4. Seal down to close.
  5. Fold bottom of bag up to middle of bag, creating a fold about 1.5 in. to 2 in. high.
  6. Open bottom fold and fold in both corners, forming two triangles.
  7. Add glue to long ends of triangles and bottom of bag, as shown in photo above.
  8. Fold top flap down to center line.
  9. Press to secure.
  10. Fold bottom flap up to close bag.
  11. Press to secure.
  12. If desired, cut pattern on top of bag.

Fill bag with whatever you’d like!  Fold to close and secure with a sticker or tape.

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

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What Do You Stand For?

hamilton

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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10 Tasty Doughnut Recipes

Cupcakes…whoopee pies…cake pops…those are so 2016.  This year is all about DOUGHNUTS.

HULU tv happy fox eating

From sweet to savory doughnuts, this craze is taking the Interwebs by storm.  Whether you’re into baked or fried doughnuts, there’s bound to be a tasty round pastry just for you!

There are all kinds of doughnut pans and baking tools on the market now, with more sure to be coming out this year…so start gathering tasty recipes now…starting with these top 10 doughnut recipes.

Coconut, blueberries, chocolate, peanut butter, sprinkles and more top these amazing doughnuts…and you’re sure to sweeten up your morning in no time with these delicious doughnut recipes.

bill murray donut groundhog day

Pinterest Top 10:  Doughnut Recipes

doughnut-recipes

Old Fashioned Chocolate Cake Doughnutsdoughnuts1

Jelly Doughnuts
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Maple Pecan Baked Doughnuts
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Churro Doughnuts
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Apple Cider Doughnuts
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Key Lime Coconut Doughnuts
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Blueberry Cinnamon Sugar Doughnuts
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Chocolate Peanut Butter Doughnuts
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Baked Vanilla Doughnuts
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Coconut Cake Doughnuts
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Want to see more delicious doughnut recipes?  Check out my Pinterest board, “Dough-nut Even!“.

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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