Hangover 3 – One Last Adventure for the Wolfpack

Did you love the first two?  Maybe you loved the first one, then watched the second because of your love for the first.  Well, you should then definitely go and see this LAST one.  I loved the first two (first more than second), so I had to figure out a way to see it on the first full day it opened.  And it was exactly what I hoped for in this final installment of the coming together of the Wolfpack.  And sadly, but happily, that’s it.  No more Hangover movies.  That’s the way to go out.  Not by dying out with the Hangover 12 when we see their kids meeting up with a grown up ‘Carlos’ for a stag in Vegas.

This one focuses more on story lines for Alan and Mr. Chow.  With the incredible support of Phil and Stu, the Wolfpack ensemble make their mark again with The Hangover III. But, don’t forget Doug , who plays a role that he has played through out the other two films.  You know what I mean, right?

I found that the first part was funny, but more story building than hilarious.  Some of which you see in the trailer with the giraffe, Alan singing like an angel and the crying.  But it’s that situation of putting the Wolfpack back together and hitting the open road.  I won’t tell you more or why they are together, but it’s when those 4 are together that trouble finds them and the movie truly starts!  Plus add Chow to the equation and watch the trouble explode.

The addition of John Goodman , who I must say is on fire these days with roles in Argo, Flight, Trouble with the Curve and much more, plays just the right role.  And inviting Melissa McCarthy into the mix was pure genius.  She makes all comedies so much better.  I love her style of comedy!

With the return of a few that you probably already know about and ones that you wouldn’t expect, wraps this last installment up well.  I must say that there were some surprises for me.  I thought that I had figured out the story by watching the trailer, but happily I hadn’t which made it very enjoyable.

I won’t spoil anymore of the movie for you.  Because if you saw the first two, you will definitely see this one.  And if you didn’t see either or both of the first two, you won’t see this one.  So you’re not interested in what I have to say anyways.

They only advice I will give though, and this should just be obvious if you saw Hangover 1 or 2, don’t leave the theatre right at the end of the movie.  Wait for a bit.  It will be completely worth it.  I laughed the hardest at what comes part way through the credits.  But, also know you don’t have to stay to the very end of the credits, just part way.  FANTASTIC!

One last point, Bradley Cooper‘s hair looks incredible in the movie.  Wow!

 

What’s Old is New Again for Viral Videos

The word ‘viral’ is derived from ‘virus’ and medically we know a virus is passed from person to person just like we share funny and interesting videos from person to person.  Medical ‘virus’ rarely die and they continue to be shared and can come back to the same person or close to that person who once had it.  Just the same way that a viral video can come back.  You know the ones that you saw months or years ago that are making the rounds again.

I find this idea very interesting, not that they are coming back per say, but where have they been and what or how are they coming back into your world.  In the moment when a video first goes ‘viral’ we assume that everyone you know sees it because you post it on your Facebook or Twitter or other social media.  If it was in my feed, why didn’t all my friends see it and think it was interesting, funny or touching when I did?  Where were they that day or week?  Living under a rock, sick, on vacation?  Maybe they just didn’t think it was memorable or worth clicking on at the time.

This is intriguing to me and it was brought to my attention over the past few weeks when some of the following videos started popping up again by friends and contacts, as if they were seeing them for the first time.  I remember posting them, along with many others, months or even years ago.  How did these videos with such great popularity miss some of these people?  How did they become popular again? Have they just been making their way around the world and are now making a return visit?  All very interesting questions, I think.

Tell me, when did you see these videos for the first time?

This video was first posted on YouTube on Feb. 14, 2011.  I remember it being hugely popular at the time.  It was on every news show and was probably the most popular video of that day, possibly week or even month or longer.  But a few weeks ago, a friend posted it for the first time for her and many people liked and/or commented on the video.  Where did the video go and how did it come back?

Then there’s this Michael Bublé video in which a mom gets Michael to bring her son up on stage.  It’s from Dec 14, 2010, but in the passed month it has been showing up in my Facebook feed by many different people, who don’t know each other.  When I first saw it pop up, I thought ‘oh Michael has done it again’.  Then I watched the video and realized that I had seen it years ago.  What made this video resurface?  Is it because Michael is in the news again with a new album or that he’s hosting the Junos this year or what?  Maybe some one was searching him and came across this feel good video and felt that we all needed to experience something good and nice?  I don’t know.  Do you?

 

And then there is this video, which I seemed to have been living deep under a rock when it was popular back in, I assume, Dec. 2010 when it was uploaded to YouTube.  How did I miss something so hilarious?  Or did I see it at the time and maybe the memory isn’t what it use to be and I’ve forgotten it. I really don’t know, as this one has definitely made its impression on me.

The idea of a viral video really doesn’t just pertain to its immediate growth, but its ability to hide away after its initial popularity and to find life again at the most interesting times and by people you assumed saw it the first time.

So, you never know when your video might find life and become viral.  It could be right away and then never again, or immediately and again years later or it will just find its stride long after it’s initially uploaded.

 

Memorable videos of 2012

2012 has been another great year of viral videos.  I’ve put together a blog of some of my favourites of this year (and maybe one or two from a few years ago).  Grab a drink and sit back and enjoy.  Please share your favourites with us!

 

 

And a favourite from 2010, but I only just saw it for the first time in 2012.

Please share some of your favourites with us!

Happy New Year and all the best in 2013!

How do you select your wine?

Recently I noticed that many of the wines I get excited about and that I tend to choose and buy are based more on a memory or experience that I associate with the wine than any other reason.  What about you?  Do you have a fond memory of a wine you enjoyed that special someone or at a great party or for just about any other reason?

My choices are definitely associated with wines I’ve come across while traveling locally and internationally.  But it’s more than just the travel that has made these wines special to me.  It’s the entire experience that surrounded my introduction to that wine.  I know I should probably want and enjoy a wine because it has more of oak taste or hints of berries or the influence of the soils, but for me it can be as simple as a memory that goes with the wine.  Now I’m not saying I’m going to drink a crappy wine just because the memory was awesome, but for me that has rarely happened.

Let me share some of my memories and wines that go with them.

Most recently my sister and I were at the Gourmet Food and Wine Show in Toronto and we were walking around hitting the wine regions that we normally enjoy.  Then as we headed down one of the aisles we were pleasantly surprised to see the winery Between the Lines from Niagara, Ontario.  We almost ran over to their booth to see if they had the wines that we had tried and enjoyed while on a wine tour in Niagara a few years ago.  This winery was the last of our tour that day and it was one of the best.  Their Cabernet Franc and their unique Lemberger really stuck with my sister and I.  These wines were great, but it’s that memory of spending the day with my sister, just the two of us doing something we enjoy together, that our father introduced us to.

Another great memory that has brought me to, what I feel are, some great wines was a recently trip to the southern hemisphere.  Specifically to New Zealand.  Now I’m already a lover of new world wines from South Africa, Australia and New Zealand, but it was this trip that gave me a very unique experience and introduction to great wines and wineries.  I’ve mentioned in previous blog posts and in some videos that I got the opportunity to meet with some winemakers one on one for a wine series I was working on.  It was those meetings with wonderful people, the atmosphere, the day, the trip and so much more.  Those wines I learned about and tasted have really stayed with me.

When I walk into the LCBO and see bottles of the Trinity Hill Syrah on display in the front of the store, I pick up a feel bottles to enjoy and share with friends.  I apologize to those friends if I bore them with my stories about the wine, the winery and memories of the trip, but to see the label, read the name and taste the wine bring me back to a wonderful place.

Or as I sit at a restaurant in Toronto and see on the menu Mapmaker from Staete Landt Vineyards I immediately order a glass so that I can be transported back to that gorgeous day in the Marlborough region of New Zealand, where I met the most lovely team at the Vineyard.  They made the experience so memorable, that just a sip sends me right back.  And I remember that they told me that many of their wines can be found in restaurants in Canada and less of them in the LCBO.   So it was my lucky day to find it on this side of the world.

There are many more memories, but I would love to hear how you choose some of your wines.  Is it based on a memory, a varietal, or something far more fancy?

Guest Blog – Vancouver and Victoria thru the eyes of a 10 year old.

Please welcome my guest blogger, my 10 year old niece.  She enjoyed a trip to BC for the first time earlier this summer.  This is Vancouver and Victoria through her eyes.  Enjoy!

I went to Vancouver for the first time!  My dad took me and my aunt and cousin came with us. My first full day was July 1st and we went to Steveston.

 

 

For lunch my dad and aunt had salmon, but of course it was a salmon fest! After lunch we went to the Gulf of Georgia cannery, it was cool. My cousin and I each made a Ukrainian Easter egg.  It was a lot of work but worth it.

 

 

July 2nd, we went to Stanley Park. First we went to the Vancouver Aquarium. We saw the dolphin and beluga show.

 

 

 

Then we went to an aboriginal village. Finally we went to see some totem poles.  Here are some of my favourites.

 

July 3rd, after breakfast we did a tree top canopy walk and it was a lot of fun. Next stop was Granville Island. We also went to the Museum of Anthropology.

 

July 4th,  we had to get up early because we were going to get on the ferry to Vancouver island! The ride was cool because I have only ever being on the ferry to Centerville. Then we were off to see some friends.  After our visit we had some yummy fish and chips at Fish on 5th. After lunch we went to the Salish Sea Aquarium.  It had a touch tank.  Then we stood in the Sidney Opera House . We stayed at the UVIC Student Residence.  Oh by the way in Vancouver we stayed at UBC Residence.

July 5th,  first we did a tour of parliament in Victoria. After our tour we went to fisherman’s wharf where we watched some kids feeding the harbour seal.

 

 

 

Then we were off to miniature world at the Empress. My cousin, aunt and I went to Butchart gardens. I got to take pictures because my dad did not come in, it was beautiful. Finally back to the ferry and back to Vancouver. When we got to our hotel my cousin and I got to go swimming.

 

 

July 6th, my dad and I had to get up early because we were going home. We got to fly in a new plane but there were NO TVs it was terrible but we had this very nice lady beside us so it was not that bad. And that is all I have to say about my trip to Vancouver!!!!!!!!

What an Olympic experience!

Today was the last full day of my incredible London 2012 Olympic experience. And boy was it a full day! Along with all the other wonderful events I’ve been too this week, the big goal all along was to get to events at Olympic Park, the centre of it all.

Once I knew I was going to the Olympics, I worked all my connections and social media savvy to find tickets to events at the park. I ended up pretty successful with 3, almost, back to back events. The day started with a some great women’s basketball games in the Basketball Arena. France vs. Russia (France won) and the Czech Republic vs. Angola (first time in the Olympics) where the Czech Republic won fairly easily. The games and atmosphere were great. Plus the temporary venue was perfect. And we had awesome 8th row seats!

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Following that it was off to the world’s largest McDonald’s for my second McD’s of the day. Check out this line up. But only took about 15 minutes.

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After a well balanced meal, getting caught in the rain, running into my friend’s sister (Canadians can find each other any where) it was time for some Water Polo. Now I knew nothing about this sport, but it’s all part of the experience and it too was incredible. Some really energetic fans. But how the heck do these girls play this sport. It seems so tiring.

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First it was the big water polo national of Hungary vs. Russia, then Australia vs. China which went into double overtime and a shoot out (Oz won). That meant a hustle over to the Aquatic Centre for the Women’s 3m Springboard Diving final. With flag and flag head band in hand, and on head, I made it over to the one place I had really been wishing to see, the Aquatic Centre. What an incredible venue. I could just imagine the crowds cheering on Michael Phelps or Ryan Cochrane.

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Sadly our Canadians didn’t win a medal, but the diving was incredible. To see the Chinese divers live, was amazing.

After having some trouble saying goodbye to the Olympic Park, it was time for me to leave and end my Olympic journey. But not before noticing again, just how well organized this entire event is. Congratulations London, you have done an incredible job!

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But who do I cheer for?

As I wrap up day two of watching the games live, I must say it’s been quite a day. First off the big things: our first Gold, an awesome silver and a wonderful bronze for Canada on super Saturday. Glad to know of the 25 Golds given out today that one went to Canada. Fantastic. Go Canada Go!

But what have I been up to today you may ask? Today was my Beach Volleyball day, all right in the heart of London at the Horse Guards Parade near the palace. So amazing to be sitting watching this very modern sport surrounding by all this history, greatness and plus some modern architecture.

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We were lucky enough to catch a men’s and women’s match. In the men’s, Germany played Latvia and in the women’s it was Brazil vs. the Czech Republic. Since neither my home or birth country were playing, the question comes up who do I cheer for? One or the other or everyone? The top seed or the underdog? Or the one everyone else is cheering for? I didn’t know. Most of the time I go underdog. But today, it ended up that I cheered for the higher seeded team of Germany for the men and the underdog of the Czech Republic for the women. Couldn’t really tell you how I came to that decision, but I’m sure many of us couldn’t explain what we do when we don’t have a team affiliation.

Here is team Latvia.

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Team Czech Republic

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Germany won and the Czech republic won, so I guess I chose well.

But what a great atmosphere and energy. The music, the fans, the volunteers. Incredible. I can’t say enough about how well organized these games are. Tomorrow will be the big test as I head to Olympic Park for my 3 event day.

Again no idea who to cheer for. But it looks like at my last event of my Olympic Experience I will be able to wave our flag and be a crazy Canuck as I watch the women’s 3m springboard diving final where we have 2 awesome Canadians who qualified. I’m so pumped. Go Canada Go!

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But my question is to you, who do you cheer for when you don’t really know who’s playing?

A dream realized…Olympics

I never thought that the day would come that I would get a real chance to attend the Olympic Games. I had dreamed it for as long as I could remember. Actually, I think I can remember exactly when it became my dream. It was the 1984 Los Angeles Olympics when Alex Baumann won his gold medals. From that moment on I wanted go and compete for Canada in swimming. That dream never materialized, but then the next dream of competing for Canada as a rower crept in my head when I took up competitive rowing. Sadly that was not to be either.

Then Vancouver 2010 happened and I will always kick myself for not going to those games. So when the opportunity came up to attend the London 2012 games, I couldn’t pass it up, no matter what the cost.

So this past Tuesday I began my journey to London for the games. The bad weather tried to me down, but I finally arrived on Wednesday and it’s been go go go since then (all fun). From picking up my tickets to trying to catch up with friends who’s schedules are also filled with watching events, its been a whirl wind.

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Today I got to attend my first event. And what better to start with than Rowing. It was incredible. From the shuttle bus to the volunteers to the incredible organization of it all, it has all been done right over here. And the rowing itself was great. Sadly it was not a big day for Canada but I did get to see the men’s pair race and I could almost reach out and touch them.

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My next few days are filled with so much more, that I will share with you as it happens. I just can’t wait and also have trouble believing this is all really happening. Pinch me, it is! Go Canada Go!

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I will say one last thing, I do miss the CTV coverage of the Games. Can’t say that the BBC style is for me. But still great to watch it in real time.

Glory Hole Doughnuts…..Mmmmmm!

A few weeks ago I got introduced to Glory Hole Doughnuts through a crowdfunding program they were running through Indiegogo.  The story of this up and starting company interested to me.  And the fact that they were working towards opening their first store front in my area of town, was also very enticing to me.  I was thrilled to help support a local business in the Parkdale area of Toronto.

As part of my contribution, I was rewarded with a dozen of the extremely yummy Glory Hole Doughnuts.  They are not your regular doughnuts.  These tasty treats have been created to be unique and can mimic the flavours of other tastes you love.  Like Butter and Toast, Banana Cream Pie or Lemon Meringue.

I knew that I couldn’t accept these dozen doughnuts at a time that I would be the sole person responsible for eating them.  As I really don’t think that is part of my Weight Watchers plan.  So I decided that I would get them to enjoy with a big group of friends at weekend away.

Glory Hole Doughnuts

I received this big box of doughnuts from the business owner/doughnut creator, Ashley Jacot De Boinod, on Friday morning.  I tempted my co-workers with these gorgeous looking and smelling doughnuts.   Then they began their trip on the train to visit my friends.

Our box of treats consisted of:  Butter and Toast, Banana Cream Pie, Lemon Meringue, Chocolate & Pistachio and Yogurt & Granola (this one definitely had to be good for me, right?).  In order to make these last and so that everyone could try each of them, we had to cut them up into smaller pieces (plus these doughnuts are a good size).

Every single doughnut was a big hit.  Some liked Butter & Toast better, others fell in love with Banana Cream Pie.  The look of the Lemon Meringue was intriguing and didn’t disappoint when it came to flavour.  My favourites were definitely the Butter & Toast and the Chocolate Pistachio, but I enjoyed each of them.

The overall review of the doughnuts was how fresh they tasted and how the flavours were just so true to their names.  You really did feel that you were eating pie or toast.  So often you try a doughnut and the flavour doesn’t match then name, but not in this case.  You get exactly the flavour your are expecting and more.

I cannot wait for the store to open in Parkdale on Queen St. W, near Sorauren.  I will definitely be stopping in for a treat and sharing them with my friends!


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Moms and Butterflies

Happy Mother’s Day to all the wonderful mothers out there enjoying today and the ones that only fill our memories now.

I wanted to share a story about my mom, who passed almost 6 years ago, and how she continues to show up in my life.  The day that my mom died in September of 2006, was a beautiful sunny and warm day.  Exactly the day it should have been, as she was the most sunny and warm person I’ve ever known and probably will ever know.  Everyone who ever met her or knew her would say the exact same thing, it’s not just daughter bias.  But, on that day as the last minutes were passing and passed, we looked out the window at the hospital and all we could see through the sun were beautiful monarch butterflies.  The sight of those butterflies really made an impact and memory for my sister and I.  There was something about those graceful and gorgeous butterflies that made us think about my mom and made us wonder if her spirit became one with them.

I say this because it is those beautiful monarch butterflies that show up at that most interesting times.  We have seen them on the flowers at my sister’s house on anniversaries of her passing, on important days like the first day of school and birthdays.  And more importantly, on the days when you just need to know that she’s around.

Last week, I walked out of my apartment and there was one just flitting around the yard and just stopped while I stopped, smiled at it and walked on.  And one followed the family around at the park that same weekend, almost making sure that everyone was doing well.

I know that some people would have trouble believing my story, but when you’ve lost someone you just need little things like butterflies to hold on to and help remind you that you are still loved by a wonderful soul like my mother.

Happy Mother's Day

Happy Mother’s Day