Category Archives: tv

stuff and nonsense

I’m sitting in our family room (that’s the one you live in, right? the fancy one for company that no one goes into is the living room?) amidst a pile of cables, wires, speakers, televisions (one still in the box) and a ceiling panel.  For whatever reason, I made the practical decision to bundle our services (why didn’t I do this before?) and since the guy had to come out anyway, we’re getting the multi-room DVR installed, too.  Which necessitated a new tv.  You can’t have multi-room DVR service with only one tv; that doesn’t make any sense.  In our defense, Travis has been spending more time in the garage either preparing to brew, brewing, or cleaning up from brewing.  So, it would be nice for him to have a tv there and that’s where we’re going to try and set up the old one.

The cable guy has been here for two hours and I have no idea how much longer it will take.  Lots of new wires and cables and connections to make, I suppose.  In case you’re interested, when you get the multi-room DVR, they connect the new DVR units with a new cable.  If you have cable service in a room but aren’t planning to connect it to the DVR system, you can still use your existing coaxial cables.  If you plan to add the room to the DVR network. someone comes out to run a new line because you can’t pre-run the line unless you’re going to hook it up to a cable box.  At least, that’s what we’re told.

In the meantime, I’m waiting for twelve pounds of pork shoulder to get all tasty in the oven, Momofuku-style.  We’re taking it to the annual QUAFF holiday party, where good food and good beers will be plentiful.  This is actually an event where my food is often overshadowed by better food.  I know you’re wondering how this is possible (because my food is awesome!) – hee hee.  It’s just one of those natural progressions that where you have guys who love to tinker until they make great beer, they also tend to tinker in the kitchen and turn out great dishes.  And cheeses.  Breads.  Pickled and fermented foods.  The list goes on and on.

Having service people in our house makes me completely unmotivated to do anything.  I don’t know why.  It’s not like they care if I do yard work or clean the house or work on any of the many wedding projects we still have to finish (or start).  I just like doing those things when no one else is here.  Yet, I feel completely lazy if I just sit and read while they’re crawling around the attic or wherever.  Obviously, playing on the internet and writing a blog post is neither lazy nor productive.

If you’re looking for a dead-easy pork shoulder recipe, here’s one:  Take a 6-7 pound pork shoulder or butter and brine it overnight in equal parts sugar and salt.  In the morning, place the pork in a roasting pan or dutch oven and cook it at 300F for about 6 hours, uncovered.  Every hour or so, baste the pork in its own juices and fat (there won’t actually be enough for basting until Hour 2 or so).  You’ll know the pork is done when it pulls apart and looks delicious.  But, before you pull the pork out crank the oven up to 400F and sprinkle brown sugar on the pork.  Let that roast until the sugar is all crackly and then pull the pork out of the oven and let it rest for about 20 minutes.  Ta da!  Serve with green onion sauce, rice, lettuce, King’s hawaiian bread… anything, really.  It’ll be delicious.

Back to wedding planning – I’m having an issue deciding on flowers.  At first, I thought I didn’t want flowers.  Then, I thought some flowers would be nice if we could keep the cost down and do something simple.  After getting a “simple” estimate back, I’m back to wondering if flowers are going to be worth it.  Is $300 for centerpieces that aren’t the center of attention too much or am I crazy and that’s actually a good deal?

The Jensen Project on NBC and a giveaway

Walmart and P&G have teamed up again to produce The Jensen Project on NBC Friday, July 16th, 2010.  The Jensen Project is a thrilling and fun science fiction adventure that focuses on the Thompson family who are reintroduced to The Jensen Project – a secret community of geniuses conducting advanced underground research to solve the world’s most difficult problems. The family finds themselves forced into a frantic pursuit to keep a potentially dangerous technology from falling into the wrong hands.

From what I’ve seen (I was sent a teaser DVD and more popcorn), it’s like that movie about the kids of superheroes who go to school (does anyone remember what that movie was?) but without superpowers.  Just super-brains.  It’s a cute tv movie, something to watch on a lazy day with a bowl of good popcorn.  And, if you have someone like Travis in your life who likes to ridicule silly shows, preferably by yourself.

MS&L is letting me host a giveaway for another DVD/soundtrack combo for The Jensen Project.  I get a copy and one of you get a copy!  If you’d like to enter, leave a comment on this post and tell me what you’re watching on tv this summer before 11:59 PM Thursday, July 15th, 2010.

Happy 4th!

Happy 4th of July! We had some friends over for some BBQ and other tasty food and then we sat on the couch to watch fireworks on Fox 5. I didn’t know you could watch fireworks in tv! Comfy seats, great view, and we didn’t have to fight traffic. Yay!

random musings

always a dog on the couch

This is the view from my treadmill.  Do you notice that the view directly in front of me is the (electric) fireplace?  If I want to watch tv I kind of have to turn my head the whole time.  Oddly enough, if you’re on the elliptical, you’re staring straight at the tv.  For a brief moment, we discussed moving the tv to where the fireplace/heater is, but then we’d have to buy a new corner tv stand and it’s just not a priority at the moment.  I just try to watch shows that I can mostly listen to and not have to watch for important visual cues.

Secrets of the Mountain – giveaway!

MS&L has been very generous, provided items to review and every now and then something to offer my faithful readers (as many as there are out there).  They recently sent me a copy of “Secrets of the Mountain” and some Orville Redenbacher popcorn (because what tv movie is complete without popcorn?)

Here’s the description of the movie, which airs April 16, 2010 on NBC at 8 PM.

Somewhere between the demands of her career, her ex’s wedding and her kids’ busy schedules, Dana James is noticing her tight-knit family starting to unravel.  An unexpected offer to purchase her family’s mountain property sets up a weekend road trip, which she hopes will bring her family back together.  But when they arrive, they quickly learn that the mountain is much more than it seems.  An ancient secret and a treacherous quest will test the family like never before.  It’s an edge-of the-seat thriller that reminds us that when times are tough, families don’t run away from problems – they run back to each other.

Yes, it may sound a little cheesy, or a bit like a Lifetime movie, but it also sounds like something I’d probably watch.  A little family drama, some scary mountain adventures, and I’m guessing a good ol’ happy ending.  Plus, I like popcorn and I’ll take any excuse I can get to eat a bag by myself.

Come to think of it, Travis has plans Friday night, which means he can’t make fun of the movie while I’m watching!

The movie is “brought to you” by Walmart and P&G, and I guess in a way Orville Redenbacher.  The soundtrack was produced by Randy Jackson, which somehow makes the whole thing cheesily thrilling to me.

So, here’s the giveaway part: from now until after the movie airs (10 PM April 16th), tell me what you like to put on your popcorn.  I’m a big fan of butter and salt, but I also like a concoction of butter, lemon juice, brown sugar, and chili powder.

If you’re chosen (randomly), you get your very own DVD of the movie AND the soundtrack CD (produced by Randy Jackson!) 

CD Soundtrack by Randy Jackson Includes Tracks from Today’s Hottest Stars and Emerging Artists like Jordin Sparks, Alisan & Ilsey, Paper Tongues, Kevin Hammond, The Afters, Brooke White, Lona Heins and more.

Now, if you don’t win and you’re really sad and you happened to miss the movie on tv, don’t fret because you can buy the DVD/soundtrack bundle at Walmart.  While you’re there, you could also pick up some Proctor & Gamble (P&G) stuff, too, I guess.

who knew?

yay, giraffe!

yay, giraffe!

When we were in San Francisco, we went to the Acadamy of Sciences.  They have oodles of animals posed around the museum.  How much would I love to have this giraffe in my living room?  Maybe a baby giraffe would be better… after all, my ceilings aren’t that tall.

Last month I started all my little seedlings and almost all of them have sprouted and grown.  Now I’m just waiting for them to get big enough to plant outside.  I was smart this year and only started one of each of the squash plants and kind of went overboard on the tomatoes.  But it’s okay… I have a feeling there will be some plots of dirt just up the road that would be willing to take the overflow seedlings.  Because we live in spoiled-weather San Diego, it’s probably warm enough outside for planting, but those little plants just aren’t ready.  I’ll have to remember to get them started earlier next year.

So, I’ve been on this new diet.  It’s called eating less and exercising more.  Revolutionary, don’t you think?  Someone should write a book about it.  My iPhone has an app to track weight and calories, and I’ve actually been using it, except on weekends.  I’ve also been getting good use out of the DVDs from Blockbuster, and the elliptical has totally not become a coat rack, although we totally gave up the plan of running that 10k.  Honestly, I’d probably be more inclined to run after work if I had a sidewalk the whole way home.  Stupid house construction.  But, apparently this fancy concept has been working.  Cami and I went jeans shopping over the weekend (this works because we both hate trying on clothes, which makes us very efficient); my jeans have started this annoying habit of falling down by the end of the day.  I thought I would just get a small size and be done with it, but apparently I had to go down two sizes.  I’m sorry if that sounds like gloating, but I’m kind of tickled about that.  Of course, it’s completely feasible that Gap has funny sizing and that I started with too-large jeans to begin with.  But I’m still happy. I also fit into a pair of pants I’d stuffed in the back of my closet because they were too small.  And now they’re not.  Yup, this whole eating less and moving more thing might just have something to it.

On a completely different note, I watched American Idol and was completely underwhelmed.  Maybe it was because they were singing country, but trying to make country not sound like country and it just wasn’t sounding good.  I mean, it wasn’t sounding like good music, even in a non-country way.

thoughts I’ve had lately

  • I find it really annoying when construction signs show up on our street saying work will be done during a certain period, like Mon-Tues, and then they just change the sign on Wednesday to read “Wed-Thurs”.  Why not just start with blocking out your construction work for the entire week?  It’s misleading to let me think you’ll be done on Tuesday when, in fact, you have no idea when you’ll be done and you’re just going to keep showing up on a day-to-day basis.  Stupid construction.
  • I started watching that new show on FOX, Dollhouse.  Because I missed the first few shows, I’m kind of intrigued because I’ve been trying to figure out what’s going on.  So far, it seems like a show for the skinny, hot girls to prance around, with some occasional action scenes to show that they are, in fact, more than just a pretty face.  I also like that they’ve taken the commercial format of Fringe and tell you they will be back in 60/90 seconds.  It makes fast-forwarding that much easier.  I’m not liking the actual show, Fringe, very much any more.
  • Big Love, on HBO, seems like it’s just started but there are only 3 episodes left!  I’m seriously considering cancelling HBO after the season is over and then adding it back whenever Big Love comes back.  At $13 a month, if the show is only on for 3-4 months, that’s potentially $100 we could be saving.  I mean, over the course of the year that’s not really so much, but it’s still $100.
  • Maybe it’s because I turned 30, but I’ve suddenly gotten very concerned about taking care of my skin.  I mean, aside from working in the yard all weekend and accidentally forgetting about sunscreen.  I’ve been trying very hard to remember to wash my face every night and I like Philosophy’s Purity face wash.  It smells good, it cleans well, and I only need a little bit of it to do the job.  I also bought the Neutrogena Healthy Skin Rejuvenator, which is some sort of microdermabrasion-lite wand.  It certainly does what it advertises – my face was smoothly polished last night and feels very soft.  We’ll see if it does anything for the tiny, tiny wrinkles I’ve been spotting (what? I swear I have wrinkles already).
  • We are starting to plan our annual vacation for the year.  It’s going to be in June, which is the earliest we’ve ever taken a vacation.  I might need a mini-vacation in the fall to make up for it.  We’re taking a road trip with one of my best friends and her husband, who collectively make up our best friends, I guess you could say.  Of all the people we know, these might be the only two people I would be able to spend an entire week with, travelling in a car and camping along the way.