Category Archives: Light Pulp

The Bitter Lemon Shop!

Beads, beads everywhere!

I know I’ve talked a little bit about my recently-opened Etsy shop: The Bitter Lemon Shop, but I wanted to dedicate a post about it. I didn’t really intend to open the shop and fill it with so much STUFF, but it happened that way – once you start creating, I guess I can’t stop!

At first, I just wanted to make some DIY earrings I’d saved on Pinterest. I have always toyed with the idea of having an Etsy shop, because I really like to make cards and have always liked to make beaded jewelry.

But when I made the earrings, they turned out so cute I thought other people might like them. So, I took pictures of them (although I don’t really know if the photos do them justice) and opened my shop. At first, it was a struggle to get 10 listings – but 31 listings later, here I am, with a ton of ideas!

Currently, the shop is mostly bracelets and earrings – I am really into tassel jewelry right now, so there’s lots of those happening. The bracelets are all beaded so far – I am having so much fun with all of the great beads out there!

One thing I think is important to note is that everything I’ve made is something I would wear (and actually have been wearing); I wouldn’t put out a product that I didn’t like myself.

I am also naming each piece after a place, or a thing that is really special to me. As I write this, I’m wearing the “Back to Black” beaded tassel necklace as a tribute to Amy Winehouse; my sisterhood bracelet (sorority vibes), my Charleston bracelet (s/o South Carolina summers), and my “Saints & Sinners” bracelet as a call to New Orleans.

There’s also a keychain and an essential oil blend roller in the shop – keep your eye out for many more of these to come! I’m thinking a sleep blend, focus blend, an immunity blend, and something for allergies. I also have ideas for costumes, clothing, and of course, more jewelry!

It’s not like I all of the sudden have so much time on my hands, but I’ve found that just sitting and watching TV (or rather, listening to it) while I make jewelry is pretty relaxing. I think it’s an easy way to escape – and I like trying to figure out how to make things or how to fix something. And then at the end, I have something cool to wear!

Blanche is also partaking in the shop, of course. I cleaned out my linen closet and set up a table with my printer, along with a little shelf. I organized my beads and put all of my shipping supplies in a handy container. I even have a few pieces of “Bitter Lemon” wall art along with a scented candle to make my craft area fun. The table is big enough for my supplies, but anytime I’m in the “craft closet”, Blanche scrambles to the table and takes a giant nap – and she takes up at least half the table. So, there I am, stringing beads using a small corner of my table.

I’ve had 11 sales so far, after being open for about three weeks, and it’s cool to think that people in other states are wearing things I made.

If you have ideas of things you’d like me to (attempt) to make, I’m always willing to try. Take a look at the shop, ask me questions, or shop awaaaaay! Visit the shop here and let me know what you think!

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‘Siesta Key’: ‘Garrett Gets a Girl’.

Garrett is SO fine!

You guys. I have been dreading and looking forward to this episode of “Siesta Key” the entire week. I do NOT want Garrett to get with Juliett!

Ugh, ok let’s get into it. At the start of the episode, Alex is helping Kelsey at work while Chloe packs her stuff to move into her own apartment. Chloe was planning to have a party and Kelsey is worried about seeing Garrett there… So Alex suggests he and Kelsey skip the party and go line dancing instead.

Later, Madisson and Kelsey are talking and Madisson says she saw her and Alex kissing. Kelsey admits it, but says she doesn’t know if she should tell Garrett or not. Madisson says she doesn’t owe him that since they’re broken up, but Kelsey knows this will be the end of her and Garrett. For good.

Back at the mansion, Pauly Paul is in the slammer. Alex asks his dad to bail him out, and his dad agrees to, but ONLY because he doesn’t have a father or a mother. And he’s waiting until morning to do it.

Brandon invites Madisson over to his studio and plays a song for her, and it’s basically about fucking hoes. She’s not really impressed… But it sounds fantastic, if I say so. She tells him people will probably enjoy the softer side…

Brandon brings up her ex, and she tells him that Grant asked her to come to New York, but she likes Brandon… So he was relieved by that.

Meanwhile, Pauly Paul gets bailed out and Alex’s dad picks him up and is like WHAT ARE YOUT HINKING?

Pauly Paul says he’s been locked up 10 times and he doesn’t have anyone over him to tell him right and wrong. Eehhhh…

Chloe is getting ready for her party with Juliett, and Chloe says she didn’t invite Alex because she’s still upset about his comments he made in Bimini. Go girl!

Chloe’s party is at the pool and Garrett rolls in with flowers like a gentleman. Garrett is talking to Juliett about how he’s moving on and ANYWAY he’s busy making his personal training website, and if Juliett wanted to be in a video, then ok. She does. And then she drops the bomb that actually Kelsey is on a date with Alex right now.

Bluhla-bluhla-bluhla!!!

At the line dancing bar, Kelsey and Garrett are laughing and dancing and seemingly having a perfect time. And then he walks off and talks to another chick.

Word eventually gets back to Kelsey that Juliett and Garrett are into each other, so that basically serves as her justification for seeing Alex. It’s a giant catch 22 because their using each other to see other people.

Juliett just keeps drilling it into Garrett’s head that yes, Kelsey and Alex hooked up WHILE they were dating, after the gala. This gets Garrett so worked up that he calls Kelsey, tells her she’s full of shit, and says they can’t even be friends anymore.

NOOOOOOO!!!

The interesting thing here is that in the last episode, Kelsey completely DENIES she and Alex hooked up after the gala. But when Garrett asks her straight out on the phone, she doesn’t give him an answer and that’s what sets him over the edge.

Ugh! In the preview for next week’s episode, it looks like Juliett and Kelsey finally have a face-off, right after Garrett and Kelsey make out in Kelsey’s company. Ouch.

Yeeeeeep! Until next week…

(Re)Watching: ‘ALF’.

Of course ALF reads the newspaper!

Hey there! I’m hoping this blog post (along with that funny picture) cheers you up on this Monday that seems to have come way too soon. I kept seeing Instagram posts yesterday about how sad everyone was that Monday was arriving soon – so do I feel this way because Instagram told me, too, or do I feel this way and then it was on Instagram? It’s the chicken or the egg theory!

I was feeling REAL lucky on Friday because my boss let me leave at 2, said thanks for kicking ass, and I ran out of there to take a nap (what I wild one I am). I got up early on Saturday to ship an Etsy order and head to a volunteer event with the Homeless Period Project of Austin. About 60 of us worked together to make 3,309 period packs for homeless women. This month, all of the packs go to help Hurricane Harvey victims, but usually the packs go to homeless shelters in Austin. I had a blast – and offered up my Jeep to haul the packs to the storage unit south of Austin.

After that, I was spent and yes, took another nap. I was a tired girl! Aside from that, I finished reading a book and started another, did some cooking (I even made vegan, all-natural “Snickers”), made a few pieces of jewelry for the shop, and watched the Emmy red carpets (I am obsessed with Kristin Cavallari).

But – today, I wanted to talk about “ALF”! About a month ago, I saw that a TV channel was showing episodes of “ALF” each night. I’m not sure how I came across this AWESOME news, but I’m pretty sure it happened because I watch “Mary Tyler Moore”, so I’m sure the commercial was during an episode.

I watched “ALF” as a kid, and even have season one on DVD, but I haven’t seen this show in so long. Just in case you’ve never seen it, here’s the scoop from Wikipedia:

ALF is an American sitcom that aired on NBC from September 22, 1986, to March 24, 1990. The title character is Gordon Shumway, a friendly extraterrestrial nicknamed ALF (an acronym for Alien Life Form), who crash lands in the garage of the suburban middle-class Tanner family. The series stars Max Wright as father Willie Tanner, Anne Schedeen as mother Kate Tanner, and Andrea Elson and Benji Gregory as their children, Lynn and Brian Tanner. ALF was performed by puppeteer Paul Fusco, who co-created the show with Tom Patchett. Produced by Alien Productions, ALF originally ran for four seasons and produced 99 episodes, including three one-hour episodes that were divided into two parts for syndication, totaling 102 episodes.

The takeaway there – no one ever calls him Gordon! Everyone calls him ALF. Anyway, I set my DVR to record each episode, and I’ve come to realize just how freaking AWESOME this show is. Yes, it was funny when I was a kid – I mean he’s a pretty cute alien, wears funny clothes, and is constantly chasing the cat around in hopes of eating it.

But watching it now, there’s so many jokes and references I wouldn’t have gotten until I was an adult. ALF is a pretty sharp, witty thing, and he’s not the kindest houseguest – despite the fact that he literally crashed into this family’s life. He nearly eats them out of house and home, is constantly having to be hidden, and is often finding himself in his own set of trouble (usually because he’s trying to make money or contact life on his planet, Melmac).

But this show is so funny and lite – it’s a perfect escape from, well, basically everything else out there right now. As far as I can tell, they’re playing the episodes in chronological order, so that’s an added bonus. I’m just saying, if you need something to watch… I believe it’s on Hulu, too.

Any good, lite shows you’re watching? This TV junkie is always looking for new (and old) things to watch!

BBC: ‘Too Fat, Too Slutty, Too Loud’.

Hey there! Here we are on another Friday – and yep, I’m still pretty excited about a weekend full of… not much. I’m doing some volunteering tomorrow morning, but other than that, I’m planning on making a few more items for my Etsy store and shipping off a few (I had six orders this week!).

I also have some books to pick up at the library – so that’s never a bad thing. But let’s jump right into this week’s book, ’cause I got LOTS to say about it! It’s “Too Fat, Too Slutty, Too Loud: The Rise and Reign of the Unruly Woman” by Anne Helen Peterson.

Here’s the official description from Amazon.com: From celebrity gossip expert and BuzzFeed culture writer Anne Helen Petersen comes an accessible, analytical look at how female celebrities are pushing boundaries of what it means to be an “acceptable” woman. 
 
You know the type: the woman who won’t shut up, who’s too brazen, too opinionated—too much. She’s the unruly woman, and she embodies one of the most provocative and powerful forms of womanhood today. In Too Fat, Too Slutty, Too Loud, Anne Helen Petersen uses the lens of “unruliness” to explore the ascension of pop culture powerhouses like Lena Dunham, Nicki Minaj, and Kim Kardashian, exploring why the public loves to love (and hate) these controversial figures. With its brisk, incisive analysis, Too Fat, Too Slutty, Too Loud will be a conversation-starting book on what makes and breaks celebrity today.  

The book takes a look at these celebrities: Serena Williams (too strong), Melissa McCarthy (too fat), Abbie Jacobson and Ileana Glazer (too gross), Nicki Minaj (too slutty), Madonna (too old), Kim Kardashian (too pregnant), Hillary Clinton (too shrill), Caitlyn Jenner (too queer), Jennifer Weiner (too loud), and Lena Dunham (too naked).

…And then it offers up examples and research as to how they fit their tag “too slutty, too fat” etc. This book really opened my eyes. I do consider myself someone who pays attention – I’m WOKE y’all – but this was so much more. I work in a feminist industry, so I read articles on subjects like this all the time, but this was so well put together, and unfortunately true.

Here’s a few quotes I liked from the book:

  • …it was no coincidence that as audiences watched Kardashian’s preparations for labor, Wendy Davis was filibustering against anti-choice laws in the Texas state legislature. When the body becomes public property, as the pregnant body has indubitably become, it not only liberates the populace at large to comment and cast judgment on it, but the (male-dominated)legislature to institute legal controls over it.
  • It’s Clinton’s defining character trait: her understanding of her worth is so strong that she’s refused, at every point in her life and career, to let men define her.
  • Trump’s victory signals the beginning of a backlash that has been quietly brewing for years, as unruly women of various forms have come to dominate the cultural landscape.
  • Their power and charisma invigorated the world of tennis, but the Williamses rejected the presumed posture of gratitude and humility.
  • Minaj is unapologetic about who she is and how she chooses to live – exercising a form of self-determination that has been almost entirely unavailable to black women in America.

I’m recommending this book to ALL my lovely feminasty women out there – even if it’s in secret. This one will open your eyes and have you burning your bra! Ok not quite, but you get it (Blanche was all, “Joke’s on you I don’t even wear bras!).

The next book we’re reading is “Sycamore” by Bryn Chancellor – and this one is perfect for Halloween, as it’s a novel about a missing girl…OoOoOoOo!

Have a great weekend everyone – I’ll be back here on Monday (I promise)!

‘Siesta Key’: ‘Messy Messy Kelsey’.

Oh, Kelsey…

Hey, hey! I’m so sorry for not posting yesterday – I planned on posting at lunch, and then work got crazy busy and I just couldn’t. But hey, I’m here today and there was a new episode of “Siesta Key” last night!

But before we get into the episode, I couldn’t help but wonder what may have happened to Alex’s family’s mansion in Siesta Key during Hurricane Irma this weekend. I hopped directly to the source: @Alex_Kompo on Instagram – take a look at his stories if you are curious.

It appears there are several trees down and plenty of flooding, but his castle on the water is perfectly fine – with no damage from what I could see. Hmm. Naturally.

Ok, let’s get into it!

The group is back from the Bahamas and Chloe really took Alex’s comment about her weight to heart. So, she’s meeting with Garrett so he can help her work out. Damn – he looks good. Plus, he’s so sweet and is all, “You know you’re not overweight.”

Chloe asks him if he’s talked to Kelsey and he says he got a text from her and didn’t respond – then Chloe tells him that Kelsey and Alex went on a date. Seriously, that’s a freaking SNAKE right there!

Apparently, everyone is working out now, because there’s like a weird montage of Alex lifting weights and Juliette conducting a yoga session on her back patio? I don’t know.

Garrett meets Kelsey at a coffee shop, and it’s awkward right from the start. He’s all, “I’ve been SUPER GOOD.” He confronts her about the dinner date and Kelsey says she’s “sick” of all these rumors, and tells him there’s “nothing” between her and Alex.

She also fails to mention that during the game they played, they were flirting MAJOR and that Alex ended up with his shirt off. But she also reminds Garrett that they’re not together, so dates are a reality.

Meanwhile, Madisson goes out to eat with her ex. He obviously still wants her, and is visibly upset when she tells him that she met someone new. He’s all, “You know there are plenty of engineering jobs in New York…”

Later, Juliette Facetimes Alex to “talk about what happened in Bimini.” Alex pretty much thinks there’s nothing that really happened – they hooked up because they were in the same house, duh. Juliette says they need to end whatever this is because she’s not going to be “available” to him.

Madisson’s mom throws a BBQ, and Brandon comes… and so does Madisson’s ex, and it’s a little awkward for everyone involved. Alex is there, too, so it’s basically ALL of Madisson’s baggage in a single area! The three guys are talking to each other, visibly sizing each other up, and Alex is (of course) being a huge dick.

But Madisson is talking with Kelsey and says she’s having mixed feelings about her ex and Brandon. She later tells Alex that she’s considering the move to New York – um, what? No girl.

Brandon heads out of the party early and tells Madisson she seems “close” with Grant. Madisson seems upset and is like, “What? I hope everything is ok, call me” and then later tells her ex that she’s missed him.

And thennnnnn she sees Kelsey and Alex kissing in the pool.

Not to spoil anything but next week’s episode is called “Garrett Gets a New Girl” and from the previews, it looks like it’s Juliette. Lord!

Before I head out – I did post 7 (yes, SEVEN) new items on my Etsy shop yesterday (including a tassel necklace and pom pom earrings). I’ve been busy! Check them out and tell me what you like; or what types of things you’d like to see in the store.

BBC: ‘Saints for All Occasions’.

Hey guys! Immediate apologies are in order, for posting this so LATE – yes it’s Friday at 10:15 pm and I’m finally sitting down to post today’s blog. But, I have so many books on my list of recommendations, there’s just no way I could skip an installation of “Blanche’s Book Club!

Also, thank you for all of the kind messages I got yesterday after posting my raw feelings; it’s scary putting something like that out there, and it’s nice to know people care. I really appreciate it, and I’m feeling much better after letting it all out.

I even talked to my boss about some of my work stress and she let me work from the comfort of my bed today, and for just a half day. It felt really nice!

I also dropped off all of the donations I bought last weekend for Harvey evacuees today, did my laundry, and even did my grocery shopping. I’m on a roll!

And so, the latest read – it’s “Saints for All Occasions” by J. Courtney Sullivan and here is the official description from Amazon.com:

A sweeping, unforgettable novel from The New York Times best-selling author of Maine, about the hope, sacrifice, and love between two sisters and the secret that drives them apart.

Nora and Theresa Flynn are twenty-one and seventeen when they leave their small village in Ireland and journey to America. Nora is the responsible sister; she’s shy and serious and engaged to a man she isn’t sure that she loves. Theresa is gregarious; she is thrilled by their new life in Boston and besotted with the fashionable dresses and dance halls on Dudley Street. But when Theresa ends up pregnant, Nora is forced to come up with a plan—a decision with repercussions they are both far too young to understand.

Fifty years later, Nora is the matriarch of a big Catholic family with four grown children: John, a successful, if opportunistic, political consultant; Bridget, quietly preparing to have a baby with her girlfriend; Brian, at loose ends after a failed baseball career; and Patrick, Nora’s favorite, the beautiful boy who gives her no end of heartache. Estranged from her sister, Theresa is a cloistered nun, living in an abbey in rural Vermont.

Until, after decades of silence, a sudden death forces Nora and Theresa to confront the choices they made so long ago. A graceful, supremely moving novel from one of our most beloved writers, Saints for All Occasions explores the fascinating, funny, and sometimes achingly sad ways a secret at the heart of one family both breaks them and binds them together.

… I’m going to be honest here about a few things: 1. I saw this book on the shelf at a bookstore and FREAKED out because I love J. Courtney Sullivan, so 2. I immediately looked to see if the library had a copy and they did, so I put it on reserve, and 3. I read it without reading the description.

I don’t know if I would have picked this up if I’d read the description… I mean, I’m not really into catholicism or nuns. But, I read it, and I actually liked it. No, it’s not my favorite book by Sullivan (I love Maine), but it definitely sends you on a journey and made me think about something that I’d never thought of before (what it’d be like to be a nun).

I’d recommend this book if this AT ALL sounds interesting… because there’s no question Sullivan can write well.

The next book Blanche’s Book Club will be reading is “Too Fat, Too Slutty, Too Loud: The Rise and Reign of the Unruly Woman” by Anne Helen Peterson.

This morning, I added another new style to my Etsy shop (I’ve added 4 new styles this week), so check it out if you haven’t! I don’t have many plans this weekend – I could really use some rest, to be honest. I’m heading to dance in the morning, and will probably spend lots of time making some more jewelry – it’s proving to be pretty therapeutic!

I hope you all have a safe and fun weekend – if ANY of my readers live in Irma’s path – I’m sending you love and good vibes. Until Monday…xoxo

Watching: ‘Ingrid Goes West’.

…Ingrid goes dark…

Over the long weekend, I did exactly what you’re supposed to do: ate watermelon and burgers (okay, vegan black bean burgers), shopped ’till I dropped, and went to the movies! I finally saw what lots of people have been talking about “Ingrid Goes West”.

“Ingrid Goes West” is the story of Ingrid Thorborn (Aubrey Plaza), who has spent a decent chunk of her life being obsessed with social media.

We’re not talking, oh she likes Instagram or she’s constantly buried in her phone – this is a full blown obsession that leads her to change her entire life, and sometimes, even ruining moments of the lives for whom she’s obsessing over.

Despite her past (in a mental institution), Ingrid discovers a new quest: Taylor Sloane (Elizabeth Olsen). Taylor is the girl we’ve all seen on Instagram – her life appears perfect (in that California vintage way), complete with a wedding, bearded husband, and sponsored Instagram posts to feed her thousands of followers.

So, Ingrid… you guessed it… goes west in order to start a new life and embody Taylor’s. You might have an idea how this ends – but don’t worry, I’m not going to offer any spoilers.

I will say that a clear B plot is here, offering us Ingrid’s landlord and pseudo boyfriend Dan Pinto (O’shea Jackson Jr.), and the banter between them is the sparkle in this otherwise dark flick. Yes, Ingrid goes there.

While those who’ve seen it agree it’s a little…well, psychotic… I have to say that it’s probably a little more real than we’d all like to admit.

Our culture has become obsessed with perfection and this displays itself all over social media, and it has ugly consequences. We’re all comparing ourselves to people we don’t know personally, and trying to be these people, all based on a set of pictures that most likely doesn’t represent their R E A L life.

I’ve been thinking a lot about this given a book I read last week (more on this in the coming weeks), so it’s heavy on my mind.

The other bright spot of “Ingrid Goes West”? I saw it at the Drafthouse and they had a split menu specifically for the movie. It had items for Taylor, which were refined and vegan, and options for Ingrid, which were indulgent and sloppy. Obviously I got the Cali fries from Ingrid’s side, and they were a delicious take on In-N-Out’s animal style fries. Fucking YUM.

Should you see this movie? Yep. Recommendations all around – especially if you are an Aubrey Plaza fan.

Also… there’s new items in my Etsy shop! I made several new items over the weekend, and I’m rolling them out a few at a time, but check them out!

‘Siesta Key’: ‘Juliette’s Bahama Drama’.

That eyeliner tho…

Hey hey! Don’t you just love 3-day weekends? Sure, it’s a little shitty that we have to be back at work today, but it’s already TUESDAY?! Although, I feel like tomorrow I’ll think it’s Thursday and just be really disappointed overall.

But alas, another episode of “Siesta Key” is upon us, and the gang is headed to the Bahamas!

Kelsey is headed with the group to the Bahamas, but without Garrett since they’re on a break. The group is staying in a giant house together, so this will be interesting…

Juliette is among the group as well, and she’s getting used to seeing Kelsey sidling right up to Alex. Chloe is sharing a room with Juliette and is quick to tell her that Kelsey and Alex hooked up after his gala.

In fact, she says, Amanda was looking for her phone after the party and knocked on Alex’s closed bedroom door. Supposedly, he answered the door butt-naked, and when Amanda peeked into the room, Kelsey was in the bed naked, as well.

Here we goooooo.

At dinner, Juliette is back to her dumbass ways and says she doesn’t know how to eat edamame. Lord have mercy on this child.

Pauly Paul must be fresh off a line of the good stuff because he’s asking Kelsey what’s up with her and Garrett? Who ended it? Why did it end? Who are you going to hook up with while you’re here?

Later, he’s having a heart-to-heart with Juliette and he tells her Kelsey and Alex definitely like each other… Juliette is all, “Really? What do I do?”

Meanwhile, Brandon and Madisson are getting a COUPLE’S massage (!) and Brandon is like moaning through the entire thing, and says, “This is better than sex.” Come on, bro.

Chloe and Kelsey are at the spa and Chloe asks her what’s up with her and Alex. Kelsey admits they have a fun chemistry, but that’s all it will ever be. When Chloe confronts her about what happened after the gala, Kelsey says nothing happened… but no one is believing that.

But later… Alex asks Kelsey to go to dinner “as friends”… really?

At the dock, Amanda confronts Kelsey about what happened after the gala. Amanda straight up calls her a liar, and Kelsey says she did go into his room to change into dry clothes. But nothing happened. Srsly?

Alex takes Kelsey out to dinner and he tells everyone he’s taking her out because she’s the new girl. During dinner, they reiterate how they are just friends… but Kelsey calls bullshit on his relationship with with Juliette.

While everyone else is eating dinner, they are ALL talking about Kelsey and Alex. Madisson swears they are just friends but everyone else is all NO, NOPE…

After dinner, Kelsey has a drinking game for her and Alex, and immediately he ends up with his shirt off. Eventually, the whole group joins in… and the next morning, Juliette is in Alex’s bed with him. Now what?

As the gang is packing up, Kelsey says she’s ready to go home but she’s afraid she might have blown it with Garrett. GURL.

Now I cannot wait to see what he says… next week!

The Script Lab: Screenwriting Summit.

Crafting up a screenplay…?

While most of the Austinites were complaining of Cabin Fever this weekend – I’ll admit, I absolutely LOVED having an excuse to stay indoors and do whatever I wanted (even though, let’s face it, there aren’t really many rules around Casa de Blanche).

One of the things on my indoor to-do list was attend a virtual screenwriting summit – cool!! I signed up for it a few months ago, but the trick was, it was only free for 48 hours. Little did the hosts, The Script Lab, know, I’d be locked inside for exactly THOSE 48 hours – HA HA!

Okay, so I’m sure they don’t care, but regardless, I watched several hours of this summit and I’m so glad I did. If you’ve been following my updates on my 2017 goals, giving time to my interest in screenwriting is something I’ve been sucking big time.

We’ll consider this a step in the right direction! Once I accessed the summit, there was basically a page of videos to choose from. These were broken down into categories including Studio Execs, Feature Film Writers, TV Writers, and Managers + Producers.

I stuck to the TV Writers section and watched the full interviews with Cathryn Humphris, Niceole Levy, and Jerry Perzigian.

Cathryn Humphris

Cathryn Humphris is an award-winning TV writer, having worked on “Once and Again”, “Supernatural”, “Dead Man’s Blood”, and “Mad Men”. Along with her notable career, it should also be said that she’s got a pretty terrible attitude.

She was rude during the interview and seems pretty snippy that while she came up the “assistant” way (i.e. the once traditional way of coming up through the ranks), now it’s just willy-nilly and anyone can do it. It was annoying and frankly, it was difficult to watch her entire interview. So, there’s that. Moving on…

 

Niceole Levy

I loved Niceole Levy. She explained that she’s the poster girl for “never give up”, because she tried and applied to make it as a TV writer for 10 years before she actually did, and her hobby of watching everything on TV paid off!

She also offers the advice to those of us who want to break in to start writing our own specs, which will give us practice for when we actually get a job writing on a show. This is going to be my next step guys!

She also talked a lot about different writing programs and what it’s like to be in a writer’s room (PS. it sounds fantastic).

Jerry Perzigian

This guy… wow. He has been a writer, show runner, and a producer for some of the best shows on TV including (but not limited to) “The Best Damn Sports Show Period”, “The Jeffersons”, “The Golden Girls”, “Cousin Skeeter”, “Frasier”, and “The Nanny”, among many others. He’s also won an Emmy Award. Daaang.

I liked watching his interview because he was so nice and open, plus he now teaches TV writing (I believe in Chicago), so that’s awesome. He had lots of sound advice, especially for older folks trying to break into the business, and since he writes comedic TV, he talked a lot about how that works in writers’ rooms.

All in all, a pretty cool little free session. I’m making it my goal to continue to to find events/opportunities like these (and hey, I went to the orientation for the Austin Film Festival last night!) to keep my brain moving in this direction – slowly, but surely.

‘Siesta Key’: ‘Madisson’s Avenues’.

Pauly Paul, Kelsey, and Brandon.

Hey, hey! Trump is on his way to Texas and this state is flipping him the bird – the memes on Twitter are worth a look if you need a laugh. Anyway, I won’t get into politics… let’s get into last night’s episode of “Siesta Key”!

The episode picks up right where last week left off, Garrett has ditched Kelsey at the 20’s party, so she jumps into the pool with Alex and Madisson and Brandon. Later, she follows Alex into the house… and the production makes it look like something happened.

At Garrett’s house, he’s telling his brother what happened the night before. Meanwhile, Alex heads to the beach with Chloe, Amanda, Brandon, Pauly Paul, Madisson, and Kelsey… and Garrett shows up! Whoooooo!

Amanda and Chloe take a stroll on the beach, and Chloe tells Amanda she’s disappointed in her for hooking up with Alex, and for the dismissive way she acted at the party last night.

Later, Brandon asks Madisson on a date.. and I’ll admit, it’s kinda cute!

Juliette is at home sipping water by the pool, and she’s talking to her friend Hannah like, “I’m not going to act like he didn’t hook up with Amanda.” And Hannah just keeps saying, “Yeah… yeah… yeah.”

Kelsey and Garrett have a lil walk on the beach and it really just seems like things aren’t working out. Kelsey apologizes for the way the night went down and Garrett apologizes for leaving the party. He says they’ll talk about it the next day.

Later, Alex suggests the gang go to Bimini, and everyone agrees even though Pauly Paul has a court date for getting caught with weed.

Brandon takes Madisson on their date and they order some tropical blended drinks… and he’s all charming and it’s sweet. And they KISSSSSSSS!!!

Garrett and Kelsey talk the next day and he tells her he’s not going to the Bahamas. She admits she was flirting with Alex after the party, and Garrett suggests they go on a break. OUCH.

Madisson is heading to visit her mom, and she mentioned to her sister that visiting her mom makes her nervous. Madisson tells her mom that her dad is hosting a graduation dinner and she should come – her mom declines.

At Madisson’s dinner, everyone is so dressed up and Madisson’s dad is grilling Brandon, but he’s taking it well. Alex’s mom makes an awkward comment about how Madisson used to “tutor” Alex and shit, does Brandon give The Glare to Alex.

The next day, the entire gang gets together to go on Alex’s boat. Even Kelsey joins…without Garrett. Everyone asks where he is and she says they’re on a break. Alex looks happy to hear this and everyone is NOT surprised.

Juliette is “shocked” to see Brandon and Madisson together, and is all “Who else hooked up after the party?” And just then… Alex and Kelsey are in the water together… Yikes.

And the SAGA continues!! We’ll see what happens next week!

BBC: ‘Gone Girl’.

Greetings, from Texas, i.e. Hurricane Harvey’s final destination! It’s been a crazy week – I was so worried about getting everything prepped for the Quesoff (which is scheduled for tomorrow), I finalized my recipe (will share next week), made a sign, bought a festive tablecloth, made business cards to give out, and dug out my table and extension cords… and now, I’m not even sure it’s happening!

As far as I know, this event is outside, and even though I live in central Texas, we are in a flash flood zone, not to mention all the rain that’s coming our way in just a few hours. I don’t particularly want to be serving queso under hurricane rain… But, I also know the Austin Food Bank could use our donations.

If my original weekend plans get rained out, go ahead and picture me in the apartment eating said queso with Blanche. There will probably be lots of reading, organizing, and trying not to open the fridge once the power goes out. Stay tuned.

Anyway, Blanche’s Book Club is behind the times BUT we finally got around to reading “Gone Girl” by Gillian Flynn.

Now, before we get into it, I’ll say that I let this book sit on my shelf for months (and more months) because everyone I know that read it didn’t really have good things to say about it. So, I was in no rush. I’ll also let you in on a little secret: I don’t really like books that are REAL popular (“The Fault in Our Stars” was an absolute exception).

While I was waiting on my library reserves, I decided to finally pick up this book. Here’s the description from Amazon:

On a warm summer morning in North Carthage, Missouri, it is Nick and Amy Dunne’s fifth wedding anniversary. Presents are being wrapped and reservations are being made when Nick’s clever and beautiful wife disappears. Husband-of-the-Year Nick isn’t doing himself any favors with cringe-worthy daydreams about the slope and shape of his wife’s head, but passages from Amy’s diary reveal the alpha-girl perfectionist could have put anyone dangerously on edge. Under mounting pressure from the police and the media—as well as Amy’s fiercely doting parents—the town golden boy parades an endless series of lies, deceits, and inappropriate behavior. Nick is oddly evasive, and he’s definitely bitter—but is he really a killer? 

Don’t worry, I’m not going to give anything away! But, I’ll say the way the first half of the book is written was definitely grasping at straws to frame the husband as the killer. Being a true-crime nut, I knew this just wasn’t going to be the case.

Naturally, the book has a pretty crazy twist or two, and I liked it. I read this book FAST, and I even stayed up until like 4am or something weird to finish it. It was easy to read, and definitely creepy as hell. A page-turner. If you’re in Texas right now and need plans to hold you over in the dark, grab your bag of tea lights and this book, and settle right in.

I saw the movie was also airing on TV around the time I was reading the book, so I recorded it and watched it within hours of putting the book down. I’m not a fan of Ben Affleck (he plays the husband), but the movie was a great adaptation of the book.

So, there you have it. I liked it. I liked it so much I want to check out Flynn’s other books: “Dark Places” and “Sharp Objects“.

The next book Blanche’s Book Club will be reading is “Into the Water” by Paula Hawkins. I’m definitely looking forward to hearing your thoughts on this one!

Have a good weekend everyone – if you’re in Harvey’s path, I’m wishing you luck and safety! See y’all next week 🙂

Watching: ‘Patti Cake$’.

Loved this movie!

I’m pretty sure that every movie I saw this summer featured a preview for the indie-film “Patti Cake$”. Granted, I didn’t go to THAT many movies this summer, and every single one of them was at the Drafthouse, so, you get it.

But, I really wanted to see this movie.

The previews said Patti would be the character you wanted to root for this year. Hmm.

So, I saw a promo in my email inbox about seeing a screening of the movie that would feature Q&A with the cast. I wasn’t exactly sure what this would entail, but I didn’t think about it, and I bought a ticket (remember, 2017 goal: Just Do It).

I arrive at the theatre Sunday night, order some food, and my waiter asks for my ID and if I have a nut allergy. I didn’t order alcohol (I’m really trying to get thin y’all), and I definitely didn’t order anything nutty.

“We’ve got a few surprises coming,” he said.

Oh, DRAFTHOUSE.

So, they bring everyone in the audience a green gin-based shot, which the host says “will make sense once you see the movie.”

He says we’re going to do a toast, when WHO walks into the theatre but Bridget Everett!

My. Jaw. Dropped.

Although not necessarily known for her acting, she was in “Trainwreck” and also the “Sex and the City” movie. She’s mostly known for her comedy, a love of karaoke, and many hilarious appearances on “Watch What Happens Live”.

She’s also in “Patti Cake$” and was there to watch the movie with us and answer questions at the end with the film’s director, Geremy Jasper.

“Patti Cake$” is a movie that focuses on Patti, aka “Killa P”, an aspiring rapper living in a Jersey suburb.

Although it was written five years ago, this movie pulls out some relevant cultural issues, which seems politically relevant (but Jasper confirmed it was not intended to be political).

This movie was realistic, at times hurtfully so, but I couldn’t turn away. These aren’t the characters anyone aspires to be – they are flawed, but as a result, they’re incredibly relatable.

A movie about a small town, hopeless cater-waiter trying to make it big; no shit I’m all over it. Plus, the rap lyrics from Killa P (written by Jasper himself) are impressive as hell – and she takes down the haters, one by one.

Fantastic!

Since this is an indi flick, I’m not sure what cities it will be playing in, so be on the lookout for it in your town!

‘Siesta Key’: ‘Alex’s Kingdom’.

The saga continues…

Every week I continue to be SHOCKED that this show is still on television. Here we are, again, so let’s get into it!

The episode kicks off with Chloe asking Alex if he really slept with Amanda. He admits it, shockingly, and Chloe is just liiiike, hey could you let me know when you sleep with my friends? And Alex is all, “Well, I don’t plan on it happening AGAIN.”

Already, Amanda has ruined things with Brandon before they even got started, so at least Chloe may have THAT to hang on to (I mean can this chick catch a break?).

Juliet stops by Alex’s house and he tells her that he hooked up with Amanda “a few weeks back”, and shockingly, Juliet is pissed and stands up for herself. Then she’s all, “Bye. I’ll see you. Maybe. I don’t know.”

Later, Kelsey seems pretty bummed about the conversation she had with Garrett.

The fact that Amanda and Alex hooked up is the BIGGEST story of this episode… and I’m really not sure why. Possibly because Alex keeps telling everyone.

Chloe and Juliet… is it Juliet or Juliette? Or do I care? Anyway, they are talking about it and finally Chloe asks what we’re all thinking: “Do you really think you’re not going to hook up with Alex again?” And she has nothing to say because SHE WILL.

Meanwhile, Alex is planning to host a party at his house that will benefit kids with autism (his brother and sister have autism). Good job.

Everyone is talking about how Kelsey is on the verge of breaking up with Brandon… and Alex is eyeing her for a rebound hookup. Ugh!

It’s the day of the party, and they are really sprucing things up at Alex’s house. Madison is helping him and asks him if Juliet AND Amanda RSVP’d – of course they did…

At the party, Chloe tells Alex that Kelsey and Garret are having issues…oh, Lord.

It honestly seems like Brandon is hitting on Madison, then straight up asks her out, and she’s all, uh, what about Amanda? Looks like she’s getting left in the dust.

When Amanda arrives at the party though, all the guys are like DAAAAAAMN. Then Juliet says she needs to go talk to her (meanwhile, we all wish this would end in a fight).

It’s rather calm, and Amanda swears she’s not with Alex, AT ALL.

Later, Alex gives a big speech about why he threw the party and basically everyone is all about him. Kelsey takes him outside and it’s like… romantic. NO. No!!!!!! I really like Garret, and not Alex!

Then, Alex invites her to stay and go swimming… and she’s all “you should open up more”… oh my GOD.

Later, Juliet is all, OMIGOD you guyz, I am so proud of myself for showing up and forgiving Amanda and being the bigger person, now can we just go? And they’re out.

Garret tells Kelsey he’s leaving because she’s not hanging out with him, and it seems super rough. He tells her she’s been with Alex the whole night and he doesn’t want to talk to her… and he leaves. Nooooooooo…

And then the episode is over. From the looks of next week’s episode, it does NOT look good for Garret and Kelsey. Ugh.

Some of my Etsy items!

PS. I opened up an Etsy Shop yesterday!

I have been wanting to do some serious crafting, and I finally had the time to make some things that I really liked.

I’ve been making earrings, and decided to list them after so many people reached out and asked me about them.

Right now, I have 8 fun styles listed, but am already working on more, so keep an eye out!

All of the styles are $15 or under and I’m offering FREE shipping in the US.

Although I have specific colors listed right now, I’m always happy to customize items or make new things just for you. Check it out!

BBC: ‘This is Just My Face’.

Hey there! I did NOT want to get out of bed this morning…ugh. For the past three weeks, I’ve been taking three hours of dance on Thursday nights – a body drop cardio class, beginning hip hop, and broadway jazz. I absolutely love these classes, so it’s pretty easy for me to power through them, but I am sore and TIRED today.

Dear coffee, please halp. Thx.

So anyway, the latest read in Blanche’s Book Club! It’s “This is Just My Face” by Gabourey Sidibe. I heard about it on “The Daily Show” and added it to my library list immediately. Here’s the scoop from Amazon.com:

Gabourey Sidibe—“Gabby” to her legion of fans—skyrocketed to international fame in 2009 when she played the leading role in Lee Daniels’s acclaimed movie Precious. In This Is Just My Face, she shares a one-of-a-kind life story in a voice as fresh and challenging as many of the unique characters she’s played onscreen. With full-throttle honesty, Sidibe paints her Bed-Stuy/Harlem family life with a polygamous father and a gifted mother who supports her two children by singing in the subway. Sidibe tells the engrossing, inspiring story of her first job as a phone sex “talker.” And she shares her unconventional (of course!) rise to fame as a movie star, alongside “a superstar cast of rich people who lived in mansions and had their own private islands and amazing careers while I lived in my mom’s apartment.” 
 
Sidibe’s memoir hits hard with self-knowing dispatches on friendship, depression, celebrity, haters, fashion, race, and weight (“If I could just get the world to see me the way I see myself,” she writes, “would my body still be a thing you walked away thinking about?”). Irreverent, hilarious, and untraditional, This Is Just My Face will resonate with anyone who has ever felt different, and with anyone who has ever felt inspired to make a dream come true. 

I wouldn’t consider myself a “fan” of Gabby’s necessarily – I’ve got nothing against her – but I also don’t know that much about her (until I read this book, obviously). Still, I was absolutely blown away by chapter 1 – no spoilers here, but she’s got a story about a fashion a-lister that had my jaw on the ground.

Anywho, there were a few awesome quotes I took note of while reading:

  • Feelings aren’t an absence of strength
  • I know that if I had a boyfriend or, even worse, a husband, I’d spend my Friday nights compromising. I don’t really think I want to do that yet.
  • I can be anywhere in the world at any time and it’s really only my business. I like that kind of freedom.

Preeeeeeach!

But yeah, this is an easy read, fairly short, and Gabby definitely has an interesting story about how she came into being an actress and becoming fame-lite. Plus, her humor is spot-on.

The next book Blanche’s Book Club will be reading is “Gone Girl” by Gillian Flynn. I know, I know, I’m super late to the game on this one, buuuut better late than never.

I have an entire stack of books to get to this weekend, on top of my FINAL prep for the 7th annual Quesoff (which is next weekend), and I’m also going to a special viewing of “Patti Cake$” with a live Q&A from the cast – yippee! Here’s the preview if you haven’t seen it yet:

Have a great weekend, y’all!

‘Siesta Key’: ‘Kelsey’s New Crew’.

Another installment of ‘Siesta Key’.

Let me just start this by saying I’m writing this after having just gotten home from WINNING “Saved By the Bell” trivia! After years and years of watching the same episodes on repeat, I finally have something to show for it: $1oo in giftcards, fools! Okay, I owe a lot of it to my teammate, but we kicked BUTT.

Anyway, onto “Siesta Key”! The teaser is making it look like Kelsey is going to join the gaggle of whores going after Alex. She’s out to lunch with Chloe and basically shit-talking the gift he got her for their anniversary. Ugh.

Alex Facetimes Madison and apologized for talking so rudely to her at the bonfire. Later, Chloe is out to lunch with her mom and they’re talking about how “great” summer is in Siesta Key? Umm really, cause you literally JUST had surgery for getting your face beat in. It cannot be that great.

Later, some of the group joins Alex on his boat and I can’t help but wonder if it’s the same boat he’s committed all these crimes on. Ew.

Amanda is on the boat, in a thong, and she’s basically all over every guy, because of course. In his defense though, Alex encourages her to squash her beef with Chloe and she says she will (maybe in the season finale).

Later, Alex is “teaching” Kelsey how to drive the boat and you can tell Garrett is jeaaaaalllous.

Next, Madison (I realized I’ve been spelling her name wrong this entire time, it’s Madisson) is prepping for her interview with Alex’s dad’s company. But basically right when she walks in, the guy tells her she really has nothing on her resume compared to the other candidates. Awesome.

Then, Chloe is visiting with a therapist and is telling her about the altercation she had with Amanda. The therapist tells her to consider the role of alcohol in the fight, and how she reacts to situations. Chloe also tells the therapist that her father is aggressive and has been in and out of jail – she has never met him.

Kelsey and Garrett are paddleboarding and she is talking about how much fun she had on the boat the day before – and he’s not really into it. I’ll admit, this scene was a little sad – I felt bad for Garrett. He was like, “Alex has a lot of money and I’m sure he thinks he can just do whatever he wants and date whoever.” Aww… Kelsey reassures him she’s not interested in Alex, but the entire situation is just weird.

Back at Alex’s house, he finds out he’s been waitlisted for law school. So… yeah.

At Juliette’s she’s recovering from having her wisdom teeth removed. She says she’s under the influence of pain killers, yet she seems exactly the same as how we’ve seen her all season. Hm.

Alex and Madisson meet up and talk about their recent failures, and Alex says he is dead-set on wanting to be a lawyer because he likes the water and “that shit costs money”, so he’s going to work his ass off, be a lawyer, retire, and then own a marina.

Umm, ok. I feel like law is a job you actually have to have a passion for and not just want money, but I could be wrong. Two, how is someone BREAKING THE LAW going to get into law school and be successful? Is this a thing?

Juliette finally gets to hang out with Alex again, and they are trying to work out a meeting between Amanda and Chloe.

Juliette agrees to meet up with the two of them to try and mediate. Chloe immediately starts crying and apologizes for her part – basically, her mouth. Amanda apologizes, too, and says she wants to move on from it, but she still has to see it to believe it.

Aaaaand then the fact that Brandon wants Amanda comes up, and shockingly, Chloe is cool with it. Wow. WAY TO GO LADIES!

Butttt then Pauly Paul shows up at the bar during Chloe’s shift and he tells her about Amanda hooking up with Alex. And thisssss goes over poorly.

Next week? It’s another party at Alex’s! Go figure!!!! I’ll see you then…