My website

My website

Friday, October 19, 2012

What to expect with "What to Expect When You're Expecting"

I have some strict movie rules. Among them is: Never, never watch an ensemble-cast movie.

"What to Expect When You're Expecting" shreds that rule.

The beauty of coincidence

Lands' End fleece roll-brim hat
So. Mike and I are getting ready to take our morning walk. It's one of those autumn days when you don't know how to dress, so I layer the clothing - light turtleneck, sweatshirt, Gore-tex jacket, light vest, fuzzy purple Lands' End hat.

It doesn't take me long to start shedding layers. Pretty soon I'm juggling sunglasses, jacket, vest, hat, and leash (Our dog can run free on our walking path, the "Bugline Trail").

By the time we reach the end of the trail, I realize my hat is gone.

NO! Not my beloved fuzzy purple hat!

Police Beat - Markesan, Wisconsin

Here are some (belated) listings from the August 16 and September 20 issues of Markesan Regional Reporter:

8/11/12: LOCKOUT - Police assisted a Markesan resident in gaining entry to their vehicle without incident.

8/10/12: ORDINANCE VIOLATION - Police were dispatched to the area of Bridge and John Streets on the report of a barking dog. Police arrived on the scene and were able to locate the residence in question, which police have had previous contact with. Because the residence had been contacted previously, Police issued the dog's owner a noise ordinance citation with further warnings to register the dog within three weeks or face additional sanctions.

9/14/12: AGENCY ASSIST - Markesan police were contacted regarding a stop sign that had been knocked down at the intersections of County Roads X and O. Police contacted the Green Lake County Highway Department to fix the stop sign. A short time later, a sheriff's deputy arrived, followed shortly thereafter by a member of the Highway Department who put up a temporary sign.

9/12/12: FOUND PROPERTY - A concerned citizen dropped off a single key attached to a key ring to the Markesan Police Department. With no other identifying marks that would direct police to the owner, the key was placed into "lost and found" until someone comes to claim it.

9/10/12: OPEN DOORS - While on routine patrol, police observed multiple juveniles in the driveway of a business/residence on S. Main Street. Approaching the scene, police observed one juvenile rummaging through a dumpster on the property. Police found a door to the business/residence was open, but nothing appeared to be out of the ordinary. Police cleared the juveniles from the scene and contacted one of the key holders to apprise him of the situation.

"Here Comes the Boom" - a fun family movie

Kevin James and Company in "Here Comes the Boom"
"Here Comes the Boom" is a fun movie for the whole family. It has action for action lovers, a hero for hero lovers, plenty of laughs for humor lovers, and a message for everyone.

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Recipe for Edie's Aggravation Cookies

[a Web image of cookies that look like Edie's cookies]
I am not a baker.

But Saturday I felt inspired to make cookies for a book-signing. More than that, I felt inspired to make a specific recipe: "Aggravation cookies" made famous on my street by my dear neighbor Edie Schneider.

There may be an Edie Schneider in everyone's life - or there should be. She was already an old lady when I met her in 1981. It seemed she was always working - mowing the lawn, carrying water to the garden with a metal watering can, harvesting the crop with her husband George, then freezing the vegetables for winter. She raised five kids, and lived with her husband for more than 60 years. She and George did volunteer work for the elderly well into their own 80s, and rode double on their Harley-Davidson motorcycle just as long. They wore matching biker jackets. Edie kept herself in shape. Her hair and her nails were always just so. Whenever I visited, she said "I love you," especially toward the end, when she knew and I knew it wouldn't be long.

But Edie was more than the old grandma down the street who was always working and always loving and always looking good.

You see, Edie always had "aggravation cookies" in her freezer. My kids got wise to this fact and would just happen to stop by now and then, to visit Edie and George. They were always rewarded with some yummy (and freezer-cold) cookies.

Charlie, my oldest, asked Edie for the recipe. She gave it to him. I put the recipe card in my seldom-used dessert recipe binder. That was about 25 years ago. Saturday was the first day I've ever looked for the recipe. There it was, the card faded over a quarter of a century - entitled, "For Charlie - Aggravation cookies," in Edie's neat cursive handwriting.

I was nervous about my book-signing. I think that's why I was inspired to bake Edie's cookies. I wanted her with me that day. It made me feel calm.

I felt calmer when I found out how easy the cookies were to bake. That means a lot to a non-baker like me. Unfortunately, all the cookies were not devoured at the signing. Now I know why Edie called them "ag-ra-VA-tion" cookies in the way she always emphasized. They're aggravating because it's almost impossible to stop eating them. I put the leftover cookies in the freezer. I'm hoping to forget them until the grandkids come to visit.

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

It's kick-leaf time!

Our "back forty" - October 2012
Recipe for kick-leaf time




Go outside.
Take a walk.
Kick the leaves in your path.
Listen to the shh-shh-shh.
Smell the heavenly scent.


Enjoy as often as possible
Thank God for the joy.

Monday, October 1, 2012

Say it ain't so, Tyler Perry

Matthew Fox in "Alex Cross"
So. Mike and I are in the movie theatre getting ready to see "The Bourne Legacy" when they show a movie trailer that I can hardly watch. It's for the film "Alex Cross," starring Tyler Perry and Matthew Fox.

More than once in the trailer, we're subjected to seeing the image of a woman who obviously cannot move. She's lying in a bed, looking terrified. A tear runs out of her eye. A scary man looms above her. He says "I'm fascinated... by pain."

I apologize for putting this image into your head. I do it only to register a complaint, which I hope will be repeated throughout the land all the way to Hollywood.

Hollywood, stop making movies that feature the torture of women.

"The Letter" tops Gail's list of cruddy movies

Winona Ryder and James Franco in "The Letter"
I'm new at Redbox. I swear I pressed the wrong button.

I wanted to rent the recent movie about a plagiarizing writer. Even though the film got mixed reviews, that subject is always interesting to writers like me.

What I wound up with - by mistake - was "The Letter." Within its first five minutes, I said to my husband, "Man, this is moving slow - I bet it was a Sundance movie."

Why do I not listen to myself? I know that the minute I think, "Maybe it'll get better," that's the time to turn off a video. Run while you can!

"Trouble with the Curve" - Thank you Clint Eastwood

Amy Adams, Clint Eastwood and Justin Timberlake in "Trouble with the Curve"
What a fun, fun film. It may be that anything with Clint Eastwood's name attached is a guarantee of a good night at the movies. I almost didn't go to this one because I've felt afraid of baseball movies ever since I fell asleep twice during the overly talk-y "Moneyball."

"The Bourne Legacy" - a fun popcorn romp

Jeremy Rennner and Rachel Weisz in "The Bourne Legacy"
I don't usually do "guy movies." When the Tom Cruise Samurai movie came out, my husband took our daughter-in-law. He goes to Bond movies with our friend HB. He knows my rule for renting videos: Don't get a movie with a gun on the cover.

But Bourne? Jeremy Renner? It sounded good. And it was.