Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Star Wars Episode VII Cast Revealed!

I realize it's not Saturday, but the day has finally come.  The official announcement for the Star Wars Episode VII cast has been revealed.  Some names were no big surprise, other names I've never heard of.  Here is the official picture of the new cast:

J.J. Abrams tried to keep it quiet, but it didn't work.  We all knew that Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher, and Mark Hamill were going to come back and play Han Solo, Princess Leia, and Luke Skywalker.  Let's face it; you can't do another Star Wars without these 3 actors in these roles!  Carrie Fisher has clearly lost a lot of weight, and when rumors began floating this week that all 3 had been seen in London, all that was left was the official announcement.

There is an official article here that gives more detail.

I'm thrilled to see familiar faces.  Peter Mayhew is back as Chewbacca.   Anthony Daniels and Kenny Baker will once again portray C3PO and R2-D2.

What I want to know is this:  who in the world are 5 of the 6 actors on the top of this picture?  It seems like Abrams has done what Lucas did before him...cast a bunch of unknowns.  For those of you (like myself) who can't read the names, here are the actors on the top row, in order.

Adam Driver
I've never heard of this man, and even after looking him up, I've never seen anything he's done, so I have no opinion about him.

Andy Serkis
Many of you know him as Gollum from Lord of the Rings.  I can't STAND this character; he's probably the biggest reason I don't watch those movies more often.  I'm also not familiar with any of his other work, so we'll see.

Daisy Ridley
She's an unknown British actress; doesn't even have a Wikipedia file!  Sorry, that's all I have for you!

Domhnall Gleeson
Apparently he was in a couple Harry Potter movies.  Since I've never seen those (close you mouth...you'll let flies in!) I have no idea who this guy is either.

John Boyega
Again, I have nothing for you

Max Von Sydow
This is the most "seasoned" actor of the entire cast, however, I'm still not familiar with his work. People are already speculating that he could be Obi-Wan Kenobi.  I'm sorry, I won't stand for this. Alec Guiness, the original Obi-Wan, is dead.  IF you want to bring him back as a "force ghost", Ewan McGregor could possibly do it.  Overall, I hope this is simply a rumor, because I HATE THAT IDEA!

Oscar Isaac
No clue who this guy is either!

The rumor mill is already spinning again.  This morning, an article about Harrison Ford came out. Read it here.  Considering he has always been very vocal about how he wanted Han Solo killed off at the end of The Empire Strikes Back, and how he would NEVER return to the Star Wars universe, this could be Harrison Ford's Star Wars swan song.  I can't figure out why he's doing this again.  Is it because he's no longer "hot stuff"?  He's over 70, and not considered a leading man in Hollywood anymore.  He definitely doesn't need the money, so why do it?  I'm thrilled he is, but my curiosity is killing me.

I hope that the people involved in this movie don't make the fans wait for plot information.  One of the biggest flaws with the prequels is that no one knew anything about the plot.  We waited, hoped, and prayed, believing we were going to get what we had in the original trilogy.  And when the stories sucked, we didn't have months to already put it past us and prepare for the fact that the stories weren't good.  Throw us information this time.  Give us time to digest, prepare, etc.

I'm still very skeptical about this whole thing.  I'm hopeful, but not holding my breath!

What do you think of the announcement?  It's too bad they didn't wait until this Sunday to tell the world:  Sunday is "International Star Wars Day", and people will be heard saying, "May the 4th Be With You"....seems like that would've been the perfect day!  Oh well.

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

30 Days of Music Recap

Day 2: A Song That Helps You Clear Your Head

Day 3: A Song That Makes You Happy

Day 4: Rock Anthems

Day 5: An Acoustic Song You Love

Day 6: Guilty Pleasure Songs

Day 7:  A Song That Means A Lot To You

Day 8: Songs That Make You Want to Dance

Day 9: Songs That Remind You of Something Sad

Day 10:  What is a Fanilow?

Day 11:  Disney Songs

Day 12:  A Song You Liked When You Were Younger

Day 13:  A Song That Reminds Me of A Loved One

Day 14:  A Song That Makes Me Cry

Day 15:  My Current Ringtone....and Star Wars!

Day 16:  A Song You Like Hearing Live

Day 17:  A Song From A New Album That You Are Waiting To Come Out

Day 18:  A Cover Song

Day 19:  A Song That Reminds You of Your Best Friend

Day 20:  A Teenage Pop Star You Like Better As An Adult

Day 21:  Random Country Songs

Day 22:  A Song You Can Always Relate To

Day 23:  A Song That Makes Me Laugh

Day 24:  Michael Jackson

Day 25:  A Song That Would Be The Theme Song For Your Life

Day 26:  A Song by Your Favorite Band

Day 27:  Musicals

Day 28:  Oldies!

Day 29:  The Piano Guys

Day 30:  A Song You Haven't Heard In A While

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

The Pharmacy Trip From Hell

Yesterday morning I called Brandon's pediatrician to find out if they had heard back from the insurance company regarding his medication.  I come to find out that there was no authorization needed for his medication, so I've waited almost 7 days for nothing.  Fun.  His medication can't be faxed to a pharmacy, so I needed to get the doctor's signature on an actual script.  Of course, the doctor wasn't in his office yesterday, so I was stuck.

I called them this morning to remind them.  I finally received a call at 3pm telling me that Brandon's script was ready.  We stopped by on the way home from school.  Luckily I called the Macey's pharmacy to see if they had the medication in their pharmacy BEFORE I went there.  I WANT TO GET THIS STARTED! Turns out, Macey's doesn't even offer the medication that Brandon needs!  So, it was off to the pharmacy from hell:  Walmart.  (Dun, dun, dun!!!)  I already hate Walmart as it is...don't EVEN get me started on their pharmacy.  Long lines, ridiculously long waits, that's why I prefer Macey's!

The script is for only 14 days, and then we'll evaluate if the medication is working, and decide what to do next.  I've already spoken to my insurance company, so I know that all ADHD medications are in the 3rd tier, which means this medicine will cost $60...FABULOUS, because I'm made of money.

I turned the script in, and was told that they only had 10 of the 14 pills I need.  Wonderful. Walmart only orders medication once a week, (unlike most pharmacy's that will order the medication the next day if a customer needs it!) so if I wanted the entire script, I would have to wait until next Thursday to get it.  I could choose to get the 10 pills, but then I would have to go and get another script from the doctor.  Macey's would've filled the script and then ordered the 4 remaining pills, saving me another phone call and trip to the doctor.  Stupid Walmart.

Again, I WANT TO GET THIS STARTED, so I decided to take the 10 pills and go back to the doctor tomorrow for the new script for the remaining 4.  I was hoping that since I was only getting 10 pills that it wouldn't cost $60.  I was told it would take about 30 minutes, so Brandon and I went walking around Walmart...just how I want to spend my afternoon!

About 20 minutes into the wait, I hear my name over the PA system calling me back to the pharmacy...that can't be a good sign.  We head back and they made a mistake with the insurance.  I also discovered that 10 pills were going to cost me $60!  Whether it's a 30 day supply or 10 pills, it's the same copay.  Stupid insurance.  The nice lady put my script on "critical", which means GET MOVING ON IT, since she made a mistake.  I appreciated that.  We FINALLY got out of there 60 minutes later!

Brandon is oddly excited about starting the medication that is going to help him "sit quietly in his chair, and not shout out".  What bothers me now is that in 10 days we'll have to pay ANOTHER $60 for medication.  Eventually we'll be on a regular schedule with Brandon's medicine, and won't have to pay so much, so often.  And the bottom line is that as long as it works, it will be worth it.

So tomorrow we begin.  Hopefully Brandon won't suffer from any side effects.  And now that the script has been filled at Walmart once, they now have it on file and will be ordering it so that it will be in the pharmacy from now on.  A light at the end of the tunnel....yippie!

30 Days of Music: Day 30

A Song You Haven't Listened To In A While

"Iris" by Goo Goo Dolls was very popular when the movie City of Angels came out.  It was the theme song for that movie and people fell in love with it.  Many, like myself, still love the song today.  I hadn't heard the song in a while.  Creating this post was fun because I was able to listen to this song again and remember why I love it.

And I'd give up forever to touch you
'Cause I know that you feel me somehow
You're the closest to heaven that I'll ever be
And I don't wanna go home right now

And all I can taste is this moment
And all I can breathe is your life
When sooner or later it's over
I just don't wanna miss you tonight

And I don't want the world to see me
'Cause I don't think that they'd understand
When everything's made to be broken
I just want you to know who I am

And you can't fight the tears that ain't coming
Or the moment of truth in your lies
When everything feels like the movies
Yeah, you bleed just to know you're alive

And I don't want the world to see me
'Cause I don't think that they'd understand
When everything's made to be broken
I just want you to know who I am

And I don't want the world to see me
'Cause I don't think that they'd understand
When everything's made to be broken
I just want you to know who I am

And I don't want the world to see me
'Cause I don't think that they'd understand
When everything's made to be broken
I just want you to know who I am

Monday, April 21, 2014

30 Days of Music: Day 29

The Piano Guys

The Piano Guys are a group of men who live in Utah and love making music.  Steven Nelson is the cellist, and Jon Schmidt is the pianist.  They had made a lot of videos prior to "The Cello Wars".  However, when this song was released, they sky-rocketed to stardom!  I found them through a Facebook post, and was hooked.

Next up, they did a cover of Coldplay's "Paradise", which you've already seen in this 30 day challenge.     It's such an awesome song, however, that it's worth playing again.

If you're curious to know how they got the piano on the mountain, stay tuned for the last clip for the behind-the-scenes look at this video!

They then took on The Bourne Identity soundtrack.  I love how creative this video is.  Watching them appear on the train with the piano and cello....so awesome!

They then took on the classic theme from Mission Impossible.  With the help of violinist Lindsey Stirling, this video is a lot of fun.

Finally, the video with the most YouTube hits yet.  They took a song from One Direction, a group I hadn't heard of before this video came out, and did a cover of their song "What Makes You Beautiful" using only items found in the piano.  Simply amazing.

For fun, here is the making of "Peponi".

Sunday, April 20, 2014

30 Days of Music: Day 28


I am a HUGE fan of music from the 1960s and 1970s.  Growing up my dad used to listen to music from the 60s and 70s, and I HATED it.  Not until I was older did I come to really like it.  Music from that era was so much fun.  The words were simple, often stupid.  Then in the late 60s, early 70s the words to the songs often turned political.

It was difficult to pick just a few, but I managed to do it.  Below are just a few of my favorite oldies.

"Windy" has some of dumbest lyrics, but the tune is so fun!  And of course, when I sing it, the lyrics are "Everyone knows it's W-E-N-D-Y"!  I love this video, how they use a flowchart to show the words!

"These Eyes" by The Guess Who is next.  

"Magic Carpet Ride" by Steppenwolf is a great song.

R-E-S-P-E-C-T.....still not hard to spell, is it?  This is all we want!

One of the greatest songs of the 1960s, "Sweet Home Alabama" is next!!

Their voices are smooth and fabulous!

A great anthem for women!

How could I not put Elvis in this list?