Thursday, January 30, 2014

Sundance Film Festival 2014, part 1 exploits began at the airport, while we awaited our friend's arrival.  Oh, and might I mention that the load of paparazzi that were waiting at the airport for celebs to arrive REMEMBERED ME AND WAVED. 
I died. Zac laughed. I mean, it has been two years.  How to they remember me?  No, for reals?  I need an agent, stat (right?).

I channeled my dear friend (who wishes to bring his children into this world)
when I saw this tall hunk of burning love walk by.  He is on True Blood, but was
heading to the festival to promote a documentary he directed about male strippers, La Bare.

 Another actor turned director.  This time, Rose McGowan,
in town to promote her short film, Dawn.

First up on Main Street, Danny Glover.

Oh ya know, I am not above doing a walk by shooting (strictly digital, that is).
Homegirl was in town to score free shit host a VIP lounge.

I am a huge Aaron Paul fan.  I mean,
who doesn't love the scene he shot on
Price is Right?  I mean, that just screams
Golden Globe!!!

I am officially outing myself as someone who appears
to not watch popular television series.  First, True Blood.
Second, Breaking Bad.  Finally, Game of Thrones.

I would not have had a clue who this tall man was, if
it wasn't for advance warning from my friend, to be on the
lookout.  He was tall, I will give him that.  Can he act?
I am certainly not the one to ask!

Jef Holm, of the television show The Bachelorette.*
He was so tiny, I wanted to give him a lift in my pocket.

* = officially outing myself that I stick to sh!t television series.

 They kind of feel like the prom kind and queen of 90s television.

Tom Sizemore was beyond sweet!!!

 Miles Teller in town to promote his film Whiplash,
which I tried hard to score tickets for.  No luck.
It was highly reviewed and received the 2 big wins
of the festival, taking the top audience and grand
jury awards in the U.S. dramatic competition.

And...I cannot tell a lie, I would love to go see him this
weekend in the movie, That Awkward Moment.

 This was Jesse Eisenberg, a few years ago...before The Social Network.
He was so sweet and humble, stopping for pics with people. 

 I am not saying he is no longer sweet or humble,
but he didn't even pop a wave our direction. As if.

And, might I add he was in town to promote his film, The Double,
which I unfortunately got tickets for.  It was horrible.
I understand and appreciate art house films...but this left me
scratching my head and screaming for my 2 hours back.
To top it off, the director and cast did not do a Q&A with the audience
after the show (this has never happened, in all my years of seeing films at Sundance).
So, maybe they too were left scratching their heads?

John Paul Dejora (let's be real, Paul Mitchell)
and his wife with maj credit for the amazeFest

We hit up Robert Redford's restaurant, Zoom, on main street for dinner.
I highly recommend the wood grilled artichokes for
a starter, followed up with the warm spinach salad. Yum. 

This is the group of friends we met up with this year. I so wish
we weren't spread out all over the country.  These are some of my
favorite people in the whole world!

Anna Kendrick.  Of course I wanted to find a
plastic cup and beg her to sing. Such restraint I showed, as 
I only looked over one shoulder, for a possible stash of Dixie cups.

Goldie Hawn!  She looked fabulous.  She was at the festival
to play the part of cheerleader.  2 of her kids and her life partner,
Kurt Russell, had premieres opening weekend.  

I saw her outside the theater, where I was begging, sign in hand, for 2 tickets
to the film Wish I Was Here.  Kate Hudson stars in that film. I didn't get into
the screening (ugh, annoyed still, as it was #1 on my 'hope to see list') but,
I cannot wait to see this film.  Written and Directed by Zach Braff, exactly 10
festivals after his first directorial debut, Garden State, premiered at Sundance.

Because I am basically a 101 year old women, masquerading as a 34 year old, I must sign off for now as it is 9:03 pm on a Friday night, and I know all-things-shenanigans happen after 9:07 pm on a Friday night. 
Fear not, there are loads for pics and a couple of movies I CANNOT WAIT TO WRITE ABOUT. 

Sunday, January 26, 2014

HOWDY POLLY Pan-o-Bars!!!!

I should love "Hello Dolly" pan-o-bars, but I don't.  Do you know why?  I cannot stand graham cracker crust.  So, a few years ago I decided to kick these classics up a notch, with pretzel crust.  Oh my. 

1 1/2 cups crushed pretzels
1/2 tsp sea salt
1 stick butter, melted
1 cup chopped raw pecans
1 1/4 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 cup shredded coconut
14 ounces sweetened condensed milk (I use Trader Joe's)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees
Crush the pretzels.  Either the old fashioned way: in an unsealed plastic bag, 
crush with a rolling pin OR use a food processor.

Yields 1 1/2 cups crushed pretzels. The crush will be much finer when
using a food processor, but either way is just fine.

Mix the crushed pretzels with 1 stick of melted butter and 
1/2 tsp sea salt.

Press the pretzel/butter mixture into a lightly greased (I use coconut oil), 
parchment lined 9x13 pan.

 Chop the raw pecans.

 Over the pressed pretzel crust, evenly sprinkle the chopped pecans,
coconut and chocolate chips.  Press firmly, again.

Evenly cover all the goodies with sweetened condensed milk.

Bake at 350 degrees for 23-27 minutes.

Remove from heat and slide a knife along the edges of the pan that were not 
parchment covered.  Then place bars (still in pan) on a cooling rack for an
 hour (or pop in the refrigerator, to speed the cooling process up). Then gently wiggle 
the bars out of the pan, using the parchment paper as handles, and place on a 
cutting board.  Use a pizza wheel to make desired sized cuts.

Store in an air tight container, either at room temperature or in the refrigerator.

You are about the be the hero of your next potluck!!

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Half Pipe Skiing: Olympic Qualifier

We just got back from a wonderful week in my favorite little spot on earth, Park City, Utah.  We always head to Park City for the first half of the Sundance Film Festival, but were extra lucky that the mountain was hosting an Olympic qualifier this past weekend in half pipe and slope style skiing.  Perfect.

My camera gets a workout during this vacation as I gracefully (tongue so far in cheek, I nearly choked) walk the streets of Park City, taking pictures of celebrities who are in town to promote their films (or just in town to score free sh!t...ahem, Lindsay Lohan), so it was no surprise that I grabbed that bad boy (camera) as we headed out to watch the best of the best compete in the half pipe competition. Pretty sure I will be working as a sports photographer*, in no time.

Here's a looksy, from my perch, about half way down the pipe:

Aaron Blunck.  Off to Sochi, to compete 
in the first ever half pipe Olympic events. 

Do you also think he most likely just waved at me?
'oh, hi there'

Zac says he is the man to beat in Sochi. **

* Does a sports photographer need to know a lot about sports, or is it kosher to make guesses? 

** I will take his word for it.  See above. 

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Mud Room

Of course I forgot to take a picture of what this room used to be (reoccurring theme, if you will), but it was a bit of a hot mess waiting to happen (wait, wait...that is much to kind of me.  It was actually a hot mess, on the constant!).  The tiny space was flanked by two doors: one out to the garage and one into the house.  In this tiny little space was the washer and dryer and a weird bit of open space that was just begging to be functional.  The main problem with this little space housing the washer or dryer is that the machines would bounce a bit, when in use, and would move enough to actually block the access of the doors.  On a couple occasions Zac would come home from work and literally be locked in the garage, because the washing machine blocked the door from swinging.  Crazy, right!

So, we decided we would do the unthinkable...MOVE THE LAUNDRY TO THE BASEMENT!!!!  OMG!  You would not believe how many people cautioned me against this, to which I always responded, 'if walking down an extra flight of stairs is a huge problem for me, I actually have a much bigger problem that needs addressing' I right, or am I right!?! So, we put up some walls in the basement, and later I will take you on a picture tour of our glorious new laundry room.  But for now, here is the very functional space that you step into, from the garage:

This was where the washer and dryer was tucked.  We removed the door 
that flowed into the rest of the house and patched and painted the door surround, 
so the mud room would feel like an extension of the house, not something we want
 to have shut off.  The bench cushion is my favorite thing.  I found an indoor/outdoor 
fabric I liked (well, I crossed my fingers that I liked it, as I only viewed a tiny 
swatch ONLINE) and had it shipped to my mother-in-law in Minnesota.  
She delivered this beautiful cushion when she visited this fall. 
 She is a machine, when it comes to stitching!

Hooks and shelves for everything!!!  

Another fingers crossed purchase was the set of vintage locker baskets.
I saw a listing on Ebay for a set of 4 baskets, but really needed 6, so 
I contacted the seller, in hopes they were selling more, and I was in luck.
I worked a deal and ended up paying $15 per basket, which is quite the
deal (if you ever price them out at a vintage thrift store). I purposefully
searched for locker baskets with closed fronts, so we could actually
conceal stuff such as hats, mittens, baseball mits and bike helmets.

The open shelving below the baskets is perfect for dropping mail, keys, 
school projects.  

   I use a vintage toast rack to hold coupons that are accepted all around our little town.  
They are right by the door out, easy to grab one when we head out.

No, it doesn't get any cuter!  
The space opposite the bench/shelving was an awkward
area that was completely underutilized.  We literally shoved
shoes in the corner, and leaned a broom against the wall. 
The walls are an odd shape, so we worked with a carpenter
to create a piece that would fill the space, and really give us 
maximum storage potential.  I love the results.  The upper
cabinets store a lot of back ups: hand soap, paper towels,
cleaning supplies, while the lower right section houses
the vacuum, step stool and broom.  The lower left is loads 
shelving that holds my reusable grocery bags, boots, picnic 

Built in storage.  Ahhh, a place to shove sh!t.

Monday, January 6, 2014

Voodoo Doughnut DENVER

The entrance of the Portland shop.  My friend is holding up the classic
voodoo doll donut (raspberry filled, with a pretzel stick through the heart)

Gaaaaaaaw, I squealed a happy squeal when I read the following text from Zac yesterday, 'did you know a Voodoo opened in Denver?'  Gaaaaaaw, I am squealing again!!!

The legendary doughnut shop in Portland has branched out with the first shop outside of Oregon (me thinks thee ol' marijuana laws have quickly ushered them in.  Pot heads loooove doughnuts**).  Is it Christmas morning?  Basically!

Here are some pics from my last visit to Voodoo (in Portland) in 2008 (yikes, we need to get back to Oregon, that is ridiculous).  I cannot wait for the people of Denver to check them out, and quickly become obsessed with the tasty quirkiness of this shop. 

Pretty certain they were the first to roll out the bacon maple bar.  

I don't want to talk about it...

 The size of your face!

Still don't want to talk about it...

Okay friends, get excited.  Get really excited!  

Report back your favorites! 

** non pot heads love doughnuts too.