A Few Good MOHMents of the Weekend

Get it? Cus I’m the Maid Of Honor!?

One of the best parts about a wedding in the family are the parties leading up to the main event. The fun factor all depends on the people involved. Obviously, I think very highly of my sister Lauren and her fiancé Nick as I will be standing next to them as the Maid of Honor. This weekend, my mom and I planned an adventure away to celebrate with Lauren, our cousins, and aunts. Thanks to them, it was a weekend full of fun, laughs, food, and relaxation.

Lauren and I hit the road on Friday after work. We were excited despite the fog billowing around us and by the time we arrived, we were ready for a pizza dinner- Yes, I’m an awesome MOH and ordered her a gluten free pizza before heading out. Unfortunately, the pool was closed by the time we arrived, but we enjoyed our dinner while sipping on some wine with my mom, cousin Maura, and aunts Bea, Stacy, and Dawn. After dinner, we started to play Reverse Charades- where the team acts out the words and one person guesses. By the end of the night, we were playing Cards Against Humanity and laughing so hard, I went to bed with sore abs.

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We did not go to bed quietly as we are a rambunctious, loud, competitive, and funny as hell group and we couldn’t resist pulling a couple of pranks on each other.

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My mom actually got hit with a brief stomach bug, but she was a trooper and recuperated quickly in time for group manis/pedis. My feet definitely needed some special treatment. It was nice to relax and chat while getting pampered.

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By the time we finished with our nails, it was time for a bite to eat. We stopped at Stonewall Kitchen to try out the cafe before browsing. I chose a piece of quiche with tomatoes, spinach, and bacon and a fruit cup. The fruit cup was generous and juicy and the quiche was so-so with a couple of dry spots throughout. I think it would have been quite delicious had it just come out of the oven and not been one of the last pieces in the dish. At the store, I purchased a new jelly that I am SO excited to use and share with you all. I also selected a pancake mix that has fairly good ingredients, so I’m hoping it tastes great too!

After lunch and some shopping, we headed over to the outlets for a little shopping. We were all full and a bit tired, so we ended up only going to a few stores, but I bought a cute pair of shoes and a couple of skirts. This spring and summer, I think I will be wearing a lot of dresses and skirts. I’m so sick of the cold and pants are part of that!

Back at the hotel, my mom, Auntie Stacy, and I headed down to the pool. It was nice to be in the pool not just for swimming laps. We headed over to the hot tub for a bit after, but I do not have a high tolerance for hot water to that degree and I found myself jumping back into the pool every so often to cool off.

By the time we headed back to the rooms and readied for the evening, it was time for dinner. My cousins Meghan and Carolyn and Aunt Kristen had arrived by that time and we all headed out for a delicious dinner at an Italian restaurant. Since it was a fancy occasion, I decided on some sort of pineapple rum cocktail that was tasty, mostly because it tasted just like juice. I stuck with one for that. We all shared a bunch of salads before our meal, Lauren and I going with caesar, and they split them in the kitchen for us- good service move! For my entree, I went with the Pasta Melange, which is a seafood dish stocked with lobster meat, giant shrimp, and perfectly cooked scallops. It’s a downright shame that scallops are so expensive because they are one of my favorite foods! Tomatoes, peppers, and angel hair were mixed in with the fish in a cheesy cream sauce that was utterly delectable. I ate all the seafood out of it and a good portion of the pasta, but I stopped myself when I felt comfortably full. To celebrate, we ordered a few desserts to be passed around, so it was nice to have a selection of bites to try without gorging.

Back at the hotel, we engaged in more games. My Aunt Dawn had brought Hollywood Game Night, which is really fun except for one category. In it, you have to sing “do-do” instead of lyrics for people to guess songs. It sounds so easy and you feel like you should be able to perform easily, but the words playing in your head and the do-dos do not translate out loud as you may think. Suffice to say, I wasn’t great and earned us 0 points on my round. For the record, they should have gotten my do-doed version of “Singing In the Rain.” It was outstanding.

At bed time, there were a few more antics involving a severed peep, which I found again on my pillow the next morning. We were all tired from the day though, so people settled down much faster.

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In the morning, we got ready and checked out of the hotel so that we could go to a diner for breakfast. I had a blueberry pancake, two eggs over easy, bacon, and sausage. It was so good, but a big meal and kept me full way past lunch. To burn off those extra calories, Lauren, my mom, Stacy, and Dawn headed over to the beach area to enjoy the sunshine.

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Sunday was fabulous in regards to sunshine and warmth. There was no wind and the sun felt fantastic, so we walked the length of the beach, even stopping to test the water, which wasn’t bad. We couldn’t resist checking out a few stores and making some purchases before getting back into the cars.

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At that point, my sister and I went our own way home, since she wanted to make a final stop at the outlets. We both found a few good bargains that we were excited about. Just before that, we realized we had a hankering for ice cream and stopped at a small store on the side of the road. Turns out, they had PEANUT BUTTER OREO ice cream and it was delicious! We enjoyed our scoops outside on the benches, soaking up even more sunshine. HELLO SPRING, please don’t leave.

The ride home wasn’t bad at all. After I dropped her off at home and reunited her with her groom, I threw a lunch together for myself for Monday (bleh) and headed out for a walk/run combination. Sundays are usually my day off, but I didn’t do much by ways of exercise on Saturday and it was so nice out that I couldn’t resist. I finished four miles before my friend Molly texted me and met me up for a few more miles walking.

Home, I threw another load of laundry into the wash, had a quick dinner, and readied for the week ahead as much as I could.

It was an amazing weekend and I’m so glad we all got together to celebrate Lauren. Thanks to everyone for coming and making it so fun!

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Also of note before I finish off: HILLARY ’16! *More to come tomorrow.

The One Where I Watch A Cartoon

This summer, I’ve run through patterns where I will find a new TV show and all I want to do is watch it, or there will be other periods where all I want to do is read. While I do other things in my life that are actually productive during these times, I’ve found my recent freedom from school-related things to be indulgent.

I’ve talked in length about my annual Harry Potter re-read and that did not disappoint. On Rave Review Tuesdays, I have also talked about Orange is the New Black and Mitch Albom’s The First Phone Call From Heaven. While I am currently reading David Sedaris’s new book Let’s Explore Diabetes with Owls (and only have two days to finish since it’s from the library), I went through a phase the past couple of weeks of watching a new TV show (for myself, not new in general).

Disclaimer, if I’m even using that in correct fashion, but I have never really been one to watch cartoons. Growing up, I absorbed Disney princess movie after Disney princess movie, where I think my proclivity for crowns stems from, but when it came to sitting down to watch Saturday morning cartoons, I was never into them.

This might be due to the fact that my sister is three years older, had three years older taste, and I wanted to follow her in every step, including TV shows. I only ever would glimpse cartoons here and there when my brother, who is five years younger, would watch them, and at that point, I had no patience for them. I was the freak who watched Friends when she was much too young. I always preferred Saved by the Bell or Sweet Valley High because it offered much more drama and romance.

My family went through a phase when we were older of watching Family Guy and I thought it was funny in parts, but never my favorite. We were never allowed to watch The Simpsons when we were growing up and when I got older it just never occurred to me to watch that. It especially became easier to not have to watch what was actually on TV because of DVR and other forms of new media that allowed me to watch my favorites anytime I wanted.

There was also the period of my life from seventh grade to my freshman year of high school that all I watched was Friends. I don’t know why I was allowed to buy all of the DVD sets, especially because a year later they were so much cheaper!

Anyways, back to the topic, when it comes to cartoons, I am pretty much all about the Disney princess movies and that’s it, until I found a new show.

It all started with Tumblr. Browsing through my feed or whatever they call it on that, gifs and quotes from Bob’s Burgers kept popping up. I thought they were kind of funny when reading them, even without knowing any of the background. People were commenting about how funny it was and how they relate to it in odd ways.

After a couple of weeks, my neighbor mentioned she watched it and loved it, as well as my cousins, so I checked on Netflix and decided to give it a try. When I watched the first episode, I was taken aback because most of the characters’ voices, men and women, were voiced by men. At this point, I was thinking it was going to be another show that I would roll my eyes at and get annoyed with, thinking it was some anti-feminist attack and all about fart jokes.

I was wrong and I’m so glad I kept watching.

Much of the humor is actually very clever and each character is fleshed out in a brilliant way. I can’t decide which character I like best between Tina, Gene, and Louise because they all have very specific personality traits that are hilarious, ridiculous, and somehow quite endearing. I also adore Linda and Bob and the entire family dynamic because to its core, the show features a very close, sweet family relationship who mock each other, get annoyed by one another, but always stick together and support one another.

There is something very relatable about the characters, which I think I’ve discussed on here before about that’s how any media draws me in. I don’t care about the storyline, or rather, in some sense I’m more lenient about what is happening to characters if I like the characters. In any medium, book, movie, TV show, musical, or play, there is going to be a premise that is not quite regular and borders on the fantastical, or is completely fantasy. It has to be interesting to draw in an audience.

Within the show there is a realness to how quirky people in real life are, whether they don’t quite fit in with other people’s realm of normativity, whether because they are a little nerdy, can’t read social cues properly, somewhat introverted, or are just so eager and excitable that it can be overwhelming for other people. Bob’s Burgers even shows the struggle of a person, and the family they have to drag along with them, when they own a family business.

Yes, the show is built on hijinks, makes the occasional fart joke, and sometimes goes for the obvious joke, but that’s all part of its charm. I think sometimes that some other shows similar to this have the objective to offend, however they can, however badly they can make it, which causes them to lose form. The shock factor works best when it’s used sparingly because you don’t expect it, but it also doesn’t take away from the show you’ve created.

However, what do I really know, because I don’t have a multi-million dollar TV show or movies coming out. Yet…

I will watch or read anything if it adds a touch of cleverness and beauty to it. Perhaps I am analyzing the show way too much outside of the scope of what the creators want, but I think that what they have created is a quality, fun show that takes a somewhat simple premise and makes it outstanding. The writing and dialogue is smart, but not overwhelming or trying to be too far above what this genre entails. It kind of reminds me of 30 Rock in that smart, but ridiculous form that takes nothing to be serious, but also has heart and truth.

Actually, I would say it has the cleverness of 30 Rock and the endearing factor of Parks and Rec…

I watched the three seasons featured on Netflix faster than I should have, but they were only twenty minutes per episode, so I flew through them. I was sad knowing I had to wait until fall to see new episodes until someone told me that the fourth season had already aired and would probably be on On Demand. It was the gift that kept on giving.

I realize that I’m sort of jumping on the bandwagon that has been plugging on for awhile now, but Bob’s Burgers will definitely be something that I’ll continue watching when the new season hits. I might even watch it when it actually airs, which means it’s special if I’m going to deal with commercials.

I mean, if I didn’t convince you with this edition of Rave Review Tuesday to check it out, because if nothing else, it’s just fun, then maybe the fact that it just won a Creative Arts Emmy might sway you.