Friday, January 30, 2009


One day, as I was eating lunch, blogging and reading blogs, the Ellen DeGeneres show was on TV. (So that makes 4 things I was doing at one time. Crazy.) I like watching her shows during my ‘lunch hour’ here at home and I especially love watching during her 12 Days of Christmas giveaway—always wishing I had tickets to those!! Watching the show these days is luxury because it only happens when I’m not working. Well, I must have thought “Day 5” was really fabulous because I decided to sign up for her website internet giveaway. I’m happy to say today---I WON!!

I won the Tourneau watch they were giving away that day! I was shocked when I got the call…“This is ___ from the Ellen DeGeneres Show.” What? Did you say Ellen DeGenerous? (Get it?) Yippeeee. I love winning things! What fun. Yay Me!

All of us deserve to win a prize every now and then. Don’t you think? They say it’s the little things that make us happy. I happen to agree.

p.s. About 3 years ago, on a whim, I registered for tickets to her show knowing we were making a trip to San Diego. I figured it would fall in my category of ‘things I’ve never done before.’ Well, I got lucky then too and actually got a seat in the studio (on the aisle to watch Ellen dance by)—long story I’ll have to tell later. I'm sharing this story because I wanted to let you know Ellen is really a beautiful woman. Her blue eyes are stunning. TV doesn’t do her justice….

Thursday, January 29, 2009


I have to admit I’ve been putting off this review because I didn’t want to bash a Tom Cruise film. I think he already takes a little more bashing than he should. Plus, he did the press junket on this film trying to overcome the last images the public had of him. He REALLY is trying. But, I am the Duchess, and must fulfill my duty. So here goes:

Frankly, the History Channel’s special about Valkyrie is more interesting to watch. Watching that special actually made me realize what a great story Valkyrie is to tell. They even show clips and background information on the film that is greatly interesting. I didn’t hate the film. I just don’t think it’s worth the $10 you’ll have to pay to see it. Again, I hate to bash Tom... The screenplay simply didn’t cover the story as it should have—and apparently this film spent years in the making.

You have to know about me, I watch films for more than just story content. In the beginning of the film, I couldn’t get passed the ill-fitted uniform Tom Cruise was wearing. I kept thinking, “This film is getting all kinds of attention because it stars TC and they can’t even fit him in his wardrobe?” What? !@ They actually lost my interest at that point. I didn’t fall asleep, but wanted to.

I could go on to tell you about the film, but don’t even want to. Briefly: 1) This is not a ‘war’ movie. No bloodshed. 2) You never get the feeling this was an anti-Hitler movement made up of hundreds (I can’t remember the exact number) of Germans. The film leads you to believe it’s this small group of officers that are out to get Hitler. 3) You don’t get the background information you need to completely understand the movement. The filmmakers assumed we knew exactly what the story was, when in reality, I was at the film to learn just that. I needed them to be more creative when telling the story. 4) I would have preferred a British accent to play the lead. (I know this shouldn’t count as a critique). 5) Cruise plays the same character he plays in all his films (the exception may be ‘The Last Samurai’). Tom should stick with his Mission Impossible films that are fantastic. Sorry Tom.

That’s all I’ll say.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009


There are times when my ‘writers block’ for blog writing is overwhelming. Then all of a sudden, I have many topics I want to write about. I can’t explain it. Today I have to ‘plug’ my brother-in-law’s blog “Jester of Reel” (for obvious reasons). He has graciously decided to join my unofficial ‘Court.’ In his words:

The birth of my blog came from a lunchtime conversation about how in my opinion, my sister-in-law only covers a small amount of films, aka "the classy ones", while many other films are never given a mention on her blog. I love reading her blog and get great ideas for films to rent and/or checkout. In the course of our conversation I counted numerous times when I said "have you seen ____" and she replied "No" or a resounding "No Way!!!" I realized that there were a boat-load of "non-classics" that I've watched and sometimes enjoyed that she hasn't seen. In the course of that I made an off-the-cuff joke about "well, if you're the Duchess of Reel, then clearly I'd be the jester of that court". In a flurry of thought I announced "I'm gonna start a blog called "Jester of Reel" and cover the movies you don't.

Just to clarify, my BIL is talking about films like Zoolander, Austin Powers, anything Jim Carrey, Mike Meyers, Ben Stiller, you get the idea. I have to admit I have seen some of the films he mentions, but I mostly avoid them because the tongue-in-cheek is sometimes way too much for me. Not that it’s not funny. It’s just not what I look for in films. Before I dig a hole even deeper than I have already, let me just lead you to his blogsite: Jester of Reel. See for yourself.

Surely between the 2 of us, our readers will be film savvy in every way. And who knows, every now and then we might just “Roger and Ebert” a few films.

Mark your calendars: Academy Award night is Sunday, February 22.

Thursday, January 22, 2009


How do people find the time to BLOG every day? I’ve been asking people this question a LOT lately. If you have a few answers for me, leave a comment. I find most people blog about their day as well as things they love—which is what I do, but not consistently. :) Here’s the latest news:

We are going to DisneyWorld again! Yep. Just for a long weekend. I think our family and friends are tired of hearing us say ‘We’re going to Disney.’ There is always a good reason for the various trips, and this one is no exception. My husband has a seminar only offered in Orlando. There was no way we were going to let him go without us! That wouldn’t work at all…tell the boys their Dad is going to Orlando without us?? I don’t think that would go over well. Actually, I KNOW it wouldn’t go over well.

There are just a few glitches we need to overcome this time around:
1) Our flight is at 6:30am tomorrow morning. Needless to say the boys are NOT happy. I can’t remember why I agreed to this. Pops made it sound so easy (he’s an early bird) and now I’m thinking we’re in big trouble. It is going to be a grueling morning with 2 boys half asleep. Plus, 2 of us can’t sleep in planes, so….
2) Scout broke his ankle 1.2.09 and is in a cast half way up his calf. ‘Who is going to push the wheelchair?’ was my first thought. They say you walk an average of 9 miles a day at Disney. 9 miles pushing a wheelchair doesn’t sound too fun. The good news is Disney is probably the best place to be if you have accessibility issues.

We are going to be staying on the 'concierge level' at the resort this time. I'll give a 'Duchess' review of our stay when we get back. I would say I will be blogging from Disney but the chances are WAY slim for that happening…but you never know.

'Have a Magical Day' -- Duchess

Tuesday, January 20, 2009


It has been quite a day for the United States. The work of equality has begun, but is certainly not finished.... I loved the part of the inaugural prayer that said no matter what color our skin, no matter what religion...."we are united by our commitment to freedom." Freedom is what rings for me today.