Category Archives: Real Life

Is there any way for a woman to age in Hollywood?

Helenrenee-zellweger-435Several news sources have slammed Renée Zellweger’s face recently. Slate.com said “But when fallen It Girls like Zellweger re-emerge in middle age with radically retooled faces, we can’t look away.” Comments on Twitter ranged from snarky to snide.

For her part, Ms. Zellweger says “I’m glad folks think I look different! I’m living a different, happy, more fulfilling life, and I’m thrilled that perhaps it shows.”

In Hollywood, women over 40 are almost always visually wrong in some way. Either they look too done, too old, too fat, too thin, too saggy, or too tight. There’s a reason we all swoon over Helen Mirren. (She has confessed to considering plastic surgery but says she hasn’t gone under the knife yet.) She looks impossibly beautiful at 69. Ms. Mirren, however, is a rarity. Most actresses over 40 are marginalized or consigned to dowdy roles.

What do you think about Ms. Zellweger’s look?

Dabney Grinnan

Another Kind of Winter Warmer

I’ve so loved reading all of the Winter Warmer recipes shared by everyone at AAR. I plan to try out a number of them over the next few months (first up, Melanie’s potato soup).  But I find I’m now in the need of a very different type of winter warmer.

A little over a week ago my apartment complex came through and installed a lot of energy saving devices in all of the apartments. As someone who tries to be energy efficient, I was very enthusiastic. I came home one evening to discover a new “low flow” shower head, new pipes (wrapped with some kind of insulated stuff) under the cabinets, energy-efficient light bulbs, and a programmable thermostat. Having only dealt with an old dial thermostat before, this programmable thermostat was a revelation. It came pre-programmed for optimal energy savings, set for cooler when people are assumed to be at work or sleeping.

Continue reading

a story about a dream, dying, and the power of Krispy Kreme

6md4g.AuSt.156A month ago my youngest children, seniors in high school, came home raving about a school assembly they’d attended. “Mom, this guy was amazing,” my daughter said. “Cool,” I replied and then the talk moved on to our family’s upcoming Thanksgiving.

I should have paid more attention.

This past Monday, at their school, something extraordinary happened; the sort of thing that makes you believe in the wonder of  “living, loving, and trying” even as you accept the implacability of loss.

Here’s the story. It’s worth reading. Be prepared to cry.

http://www.newsobserver.com/2013/12/03/3429622/durham-man-achieves-krispy-kreme.html

Trick or Treat

UnknownMy having an October birthday has meant many, many Halloween themed parties over the years.  Then my youngest daughter came into the world on October 30 and we had two in the family born close to that veil between the living world and the dead.  I was actually finishing costumes for my two oldest children when I went into labor.  When each of my children were old enough,  I made costumes and drove my kids to other neighborhoods or attended church events on Halloween.  Unfortunately, the neighborhood we lived in for nearly twenty years was not conducive to trick-or-treaters and in all of those years we had exactly three trick-or-treaters…TOTAL. Continue reading

Crocs

crocs

I wear crocs from the moment the last of the snow and ice clears in the spring until the first snow flies again in the fall. These comfy, open air shoes are easy to put on and take off, come in a variety of colors and can be worn with practically anything. That is what I love about them – they are just so darn convenient.

I started with one modest pair of taupe crops. They could be worn with most things and were perfect for “hasty” days when I just didn’t have the time to put an outfit together. That lasted three years. Visiting the crocs store this summer was my downfall. I got a pink pair. Then purple. Black. Now my “need” includes a pair of blue crocs. Since it has started to show signs of winter where I am I will hold off on that purchase till summer. Still, I look in my closet and cringe when I realize I have outfits that simply can’t be worn without those blue crocs :-)

Do you wear crocs or do you have another favorite style of easy wear shoe?

- Maggie AAR

I Could Drive 55

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RvV3nn_de2k[/youtube]

This past week I passed the aftermath of a fatal accident on a highway. The next day when I looked up the accident report I learned that the victim was a thirteen year old boy. He was travelling with his dad and brother. According to the news “Troopers say (the father), was driving a Honda Civic when he came up behind the slower moving tractor-trailer. The(driver) started to change lane, but hit the back end of the rig, sending his car into a skid across the median.” The posted speed limit for the area is 70 miles per hour. It is believed he was going slightly in excess of that while passing.

Continue reading

Fall is Here and That Means FOOTBALL!

ncaa-football-logoSummer is almost over and for many of us that means college football is about to begin. In the south, it is said there are three seasons:  football, recruiting and spring practice. Fans obsess over every player – who is hurt, who shows promise and who gained too much weight in the off-season. I am personally counting down the days until my football team kicks off in the Chick-Fil-A Kick-Off Classic in Atlanta, Georgia. On August 31, my alma mater, the Alabama Crimson Tide, will face off against the Virginia Tech Hokies (a hokie is a bird in case you did not know). Alabama has won the last two NCAA National Championships and three out of the last four awarded.  This year, my team will strive to win three consecutive national titles which would make them the only team in the modern era to do so. Unfortunately, there are a lot of teams standing in our way in this potentially historic season and my nails will be bitten to the nubs before it ends. However, I will be watching each week in hopes that Alabama can reach this great milestone. Continue reading

Lose Ten Pounds in Three Days

dietBack in the 80s I had an overweight friend that wanted to join the Navy. To qualify for the placement he wanted he had to lose something like seventy pounds in a few months. To aid him, his mother, a nurse at the time, gave him this diet. My friend dieted three days a week, every week for a couple of months and easily lost the weight he needed. He gave the diet to me and I used it many times over the years, but eventually lost my copy. Internet searches yielded plenty of other diets, but none were the same unless I was willing to buy them, which I wasn’t. Then not too long ago I found my copy. Here it is for you, free… Continue reading