Monday, May 30, 2011

Memorial Day

To all of our veterans, there's never enough we can do for you.  Your service and sacrifice are overwhelming.  We've lost so many honorable and brave young people.  This poster touched me today:

Movie Review -- Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides

I'll start by saying that I really, really likes this movie - it was the perfect way to spend a Sunday afternoon when the temperature outside is 100 degrees plus!  We elected to go full bore and saw it on the IMAX screen in 3D, so I think we got the full experience!
The story was great and the chemistry between Johnny Depp and Penelope Cruz was very good - they make a good couple, although there was nothing but teasing of this relationship, so all you mom's and dad's out there are safe to take your kiddies to see this movie.  The mermaids were suitably covered up, too.  No problems there for what I suspect is a PG-13 rating. 
Lots of action!  If I had to pick on anything in this movie, I'd say its the lack of sunlight.  Almost the entire thing is dark - nighttime, or in caves, or in basements or jungles.  Dark, dark, dark.  I'd say that was so noticeble to me it was distracting. 

And I think there was nothing new here - the thing we all loved about the first couple of movies was the amazing newness of the creatures, the seamen who were turned into sea creatures, the Craken, and all of that.  This movie was more character driven, which was very well done, but nothing truly CGI about it.  Even Blackbeard was driven by the force of the actor, Ian McShane, who is forceful enough on his own without any CGI additions.  Not a criticism, just a comment.
Go see it - you will enjoy some good, old-fashioned summer movie fun!

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Got to have dinner tonight with the munchkin!

 KT gets a sticker! She was so funny with them...

What I'm Reading...

Finished with my Nora Roberts trilogy and I've moved on to something more contemporary - The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins.  Seriously, if you don't know anything about this book, you need to come out from under that rock you're living under! Ha!

I had never heard of it until Colleen mentioned that she was reading it.  It's just the latest book for young people (taking the place of the Twilight series now that it's over, I guess.) And I have to say, I'm finding it really interesting.  It's a premise that I wouldn't have thought would interest young people, the world after an apocalypse.  Built around "the capital" are 12 communities that are dependent on the capital for food and their very livelihood.  There used to be 13 communities, but #13 rebelled and was destroyed.  Ever since, each community had a lottery each year and sends one young male and one young female to the capital to compete in a televised combat where only one survives.  Sounds pretty bleak, doesn't it?  But the author is doing a good job of making the characters seem "real" and someone we can connect to and care about.  I'm not very far along, but can't wait to see what happens.  There are 2 more books after this one, so looks like I'm in for some fun this summer!  Don't tell me what happens!

Of course, they're making a movie out of this one already.  Funny story, I just heard about this book about two weeks ago, and yesterday when we were at theater and there was a story about the making of this book on the pre-film screen entertainment and the actress who was picked to play Katniss, and the kids in the audience were whooping it up about the movie.  The two nerdy guys who were sitting by John both pumped their fists in the air and yelled out, "yeah!"  Ha!  Was I the last person to hear about it?  

Funnier yet, John has already listened to the first book in his jeep going to and from work last week.  He already knows what happens and he won't tell me!  That's just weird!

Isn't she growing up fast?!

Just got these cute pics of darling little Ella!  What a cutie patootie!!!
Grandma looks quite happy here, doesn't she?!  *love*

Working on the Pavilion again...

We're finally out working on the pavilion again, adding to what we've already done.  John has spent the last few weeks putting a railing around the edges - I really love it, but kinda wish we had stained the wood BEFORE he put it up, it's going to take me all summer to stain all of these little rails...sheeshhhhh!! *no fun*

Then we got a new toy - a red pool table (we all got this for him for his birthday, and father's day to come, and our anniversary.)  It's in really great shape, reconditioned, and thanks to Jeff who did most of the leg work in finding it, we love it!  I think we'll see some great times out there!

Next on the agenda, the long awaited bar.  Stay tuned!

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Movie Review -- Thor

Loved it! Loved it!  
A great way to start the summer, with a real blockbuster!  This reminded me of what a good Saturday afternoon movie adventure should be - very well done and great fun!  

The guy that plays Thor wasn't bad to look at either.  Ha!  Looking forward to the next one, The Avengers, which they tease at the very, very end of the movie, and you have to sit through all of the credits till the very end (not kidding.) If we hadn't been told about this already, we'd have missed it like half the theater audience did that got up and left.  

I confess right now that I wasn't familiar with Thor, didn't read the comic books (I was a Brenda Star fan, or Archie...not these super heroes) but John knew the back story enough to fill me in. I love the swagger that this guy gave Thor, and I guess that's the way he's depicted in the comics, so he did a great job of that.  I don't know about Natalie Portman, she was okay, but I think anyone could have done that role, there wasn't anything special she brought to the roll.  Her little grad student did a much better job of getting the audience's attention - very cute.  Go see it, you won't be sorry!

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

What I'm Reading...

Have been taking a little break from the zombie genre and have been "listening to" the Nora Roberts Three Sisters Island trilogy.  A fun break from all the blood and gore, but with witches!

Yeah!  I really enjoy Nora, along with about every romance reader in the world.  Her reader for this series is great, too, and has a real way with voices.  I've read Dance Upon the Air (Nell's story), Heaven and Earth (Ripley's story) and I'm almost done with Face the Fire (Mia's story).  And of course, each one meets the perfect great guy before the story is done. 

Isn't life grand? I don't care, they're fun stories and just about perfect summer reading!

Look at that face!

Being a grandparent is just the bestest thing.
She's got him wrapped around her little finger and she knows it....

Dapper Dad!

Herbert Russell Schwencke
On the side of the photo is printed "March 1945 Studer SA Tx"
Wonder if this is out at Kelly AFB?

Monday, May 9, 2011

Schwencke Family photo found

Found a pictures of dad's side of the family, although I don't know who some of these people are.  From the right to left, I think I can identify my dad, Herbert Russell Schwencke, mom (Rebecca Jo Vahalik Schwencke), my grandpa (Bruno W. Schwencke).  On the back of the picture dad had written in pencil Uncle Bob Russell and Aunt Lucille. The dark headed woman to the left of grandpa looks a lot like my dad's cousin Martha Volz.  Could that be her?  Are Bob and Lucille her parents?  And who's the child in the front?  Questions.....

Sunday, May 8, 2011

A Wonderful Mother's Day!

I had a really nice Mother's Day - visited my Mom this morning where we had a salon morning, curled her hair.  Colleen, Jeff and KT visited, too, and she took some pictures.  I'll steal one from her later to add to this post.  Mom looked great!  She was in good shape today, sat up with us and visited.

This afternoon, John grilled some steaks for us all and we sat out on the pavilion watching KT play with her new tractor (which she loved!)  She entertained us all!  That little girl is in the best stage right now - she's trying to communicate, making words and mimicking words! She can say yellow and purple, and knows most of the parts of her face!  She can tell you the sound a puppy makes, and a duck, and I tried to teach her what a snake says today. She is a joy.  We took a bunch of pictures, well - actually Colleen took a bunch of pictures.  I can't wait to see how they turn out!

Now, if JR and Ashley had been here, it would have been totally perfect.  

Molly Graduated!

On Saturday I went all the way to San Angelo to see Molly walk the stage as she graduated.  I'm so very proud of her and can't wait to see her at Disney World this fall!  She starts an internship there in August.
Way to go, Molly!