It’s Valentine’s Day. How About Practicing Random Acts of Romance?

Vintage tugboat valentineMy Valentine’s Day advice?

Practice random acts of romance all year.

My tugboat man isn’t here today, Sigh.

But I don’t really care about Valentine’s Day. I really, really don’t.

It’s not that I reject it for its blatant commercialism (although there’s that, too) but my thought process works like this: why set aside only one day out of 365 to be nice? 

Practicing random acts of romance any time during the year speaks to me of being genuine – that one has had an independent thought not generated by heavy-handed advertising — and expression of love and romance.

It doesn’t have to be expensive (really!).

I get as excited and grateful when my tugboat man brings home a seashell or a cool rock as I do when he brings my favorite Chanel perfume.

With all due respect to Sheryl Sandberg, this is how I lean in

ChanleHowever you decide to spend this day, I hope you enjoy these vintage valentines.

Want to read about our first Valentine’s Day? Click here: He Who Tugs At My Heartvintage valentine vintage valentine vintage valentine vintage valentine

Fifty Shades Of Grey. No Way.

Fifty Shades of Grey

Credit: IMDb

As you can probably imagine, I love very romantic chick flicks with happy endings — whether it’s Love, Actually or Notting Hill or Bridgit Jones, Confessions of a Shopaholic, My Best Friend’s Wedding — and remember the good old days of  When Harry Met Sally and Sleepless in Seattle?

Ahhh. Romance. YES.

I could include Dirty Dancing, but the ending is ambiguous. WILL they get together again, or WON’T they? I like a nice, tidy ending with a FOREVER love.

And then there’s Fifty Shades of Grey.

Sixteen words describe the film, based on a novel by E.L. James.

According to IMDb: “Literature student Anastasia Steele’s life changes forever when she meets handsome, yet tormented, billionaire Christian Grey.”

Sounds pretty benign, right? We all know THAT’S an understatement, right?

No mention of BDSM (and I had to look it up, ‘cos I had NO IDEA what it was.)

At one point in the film, Christian tells Anastasia that he “does not do love and romance.”

Not very Valentine’s Day-ish to me. Not the message I’d want to hear, that’s for sure.

Ch, Jamie Dornan is nice to look at, but I’m not getting the appeal of Dakota Johnson.

I think there was more sexy chemistry between Chuck Bass (Ed Westwick) and Blair Waldorf (Leighton Meester)  in Gossip Girl.

Then, also on IMDb (which is different than BDSM haha), I found this…

[SPOILER ALERT]

It’s a Parent’s Guide (!) for Fifty Shades of Grey with this disclaimer: the content of this page was created directly by users and has not been screened or verified by IMDb staff.

(And this is just my opinion as a MOM, but I don’t really think this is the kind of movie that contains appropriate content for children. Or teens. Or young adults. Or anyone, ‘cos I’m kind of a prude that way, but that’s just me.)

So here you go, if you haven’t read the novel and you’re thinking about seeing the film, and you don’t want to be surprised…

“A woman tells a man that she is a virgin and he asks, “You’ve done other things, right?” to which she answers that she has not and he takes her to a bedroom and then they remove their own clothing (we see full nudity of both people, except for the crotch area); he kisses her mouth, throat, chest, nipples, abdomen, navel and the inside of her thighs several times, blows air onto her chest and abdomen, removes her panties and lies on top of her where he thrusts and she moans and writhes (the camera pans up to show his bare back and buttocks thrusting in a ceiling mirror).

A woman lies nude on a bed with the camera behind her head, looking toward her feet; she spreads her thighs slightly and we see her shaved pubic area and vagina lips slightly parted for a few seconds. In several scenes, we see a man and a woman completely nude from the back. A woman is seen fully nude in several head to foot profiles while standing and while lying on a bed; we see her full breasts and nipples, several times in close-up. Several scenes feature a nude woman from the waist-up, in close-up, facing the camera and. A shirtless man wears jeans that reveal his upper pubic area (no pubic hair). A woman facing away from the camera drops a robe and we see her bare back including buttocks. A laptop screen displays two Internet images of nude women tightly hog-tied with black leather straps and we see partially nude thighs, abdomens and backs.

A man throws a woman onto a bed, removes her clothing, removes his clothing, blindfolds her with her undershirt, and ties her forearms and wrists together with a necktie; he then roughly turns her over onto her face and chest and begins intercourse and we see thrusting and hear gasping as the scene ends; the camera cuts to the couple in bed under covers, he dresses and leaves after telling her he does not do love and romance. In half a dozen scenes, a man uses a necktie or red ropes to tie a nude woman’s hands above her head in bed, sometimes to a bed’s headboard and sometimes, he ties her ankles to the foot of the bed and he blindfolds her as well in a few scenes; in one scene, he removes and smells her panties, then sticks them down the back of his jeans as he manacles her wrists to an overhead frame, tickles her body with a riding crop all over her body and then slaps the crop against her rib cage and buttocks causing her to gasp; he lifts her thighs and begins intercourse in close-up and we see her abdomen hitting against his abdomen.

In three scenes a man turns a woman over his knee at home, raises her skirt, lowers her panties, and slaps her buttocks as she gasps. We see a riding crop hit a woman’s bare buttocks in close-up as she gasps. A man hits a woman’s buttocks with a heavy lash while she counts and cries and we see no injuries until she stands up, pushes him and stomps a foot, making her bare breasts jiggle. A woman wearing a blindfold, is handcuffed by the wrists to a headboard above her head; we see her from the upper-chest-upwards, we see her startle and hear her gasp (sexual stimulation is implied below the frame) as a large peacock feather is drawn across her lower legs and breasts from off-screen; a many-tailed flog is drawn across her body in the same way, with light slapping of the abdomen three times. In a bedroom scene a man spits a mouthful of wine into a woman’s mouth, then takes an ice cube in his mouth, rubbing it along her lips, chest, nipples and abdomen as she gasps. A man and a woman are shown in a bathroom where he is bare-chested and she is seen fully nude from the back (we see them in a mirror); they sit together in a bathtub of water as she leans back against his chest and we see her topless as he dribbles water across her chest and the scene ends. A man and a woman on their first date have sex on a couch: with the camera behind the couch we see thighs until the woman’s roommate enters the apartment and the two on the couch get up and the man dons jeans off-screen while the woman wears a knee-length slip that bares some cleavage.

A shirtless man sits on a piano bench in the dark in a long shot and his girlfriend approaches, wearing a large sheet that he pulls away; we see her fully nude from the back as she straddles his lap and sits and he stands up and carries her off-screen, holding her thighs (her buttocks are spread apart somewhat and sex is implied). A man and a woman kiss passionately for several seconds in a dozen scenes; he also caresses her lips and face with his fingers. A man and a woman have a passionate encounter in an elevator; the man backs the woman into a wall, holds her hands above her head and kisses her passionately as she returns his kiss (we see tongues touching). A pilot straps a woman into a helicopter seat with three straps, his hands coming close to her groin and he cinches her straps tightly and she gasps.

A man and a woman discuss a bondage and sadomasochism behavioral contract in an office; she asks the man what “anal fixing” and “vaginal fixing” are, but he does not have the chance to explain because they are interrupted. We hear that a man’s mother was a prostitute and he tells a woman that his adoptive mother’s friend seduced him when he was 15 years old, making him a bondage submissive to her dominant character for six years and that at age 27, he has had 15 women submissives serially.

We see a red upholstered dimly lit room with a red leather headboard on the bed, a ceiling mirror above it, red walls and red carpet and various of sado-masochist appliances.”

(BTW IMDb = Internet Movie Database)


 ICK. Sorry, but this does not appeal to me. I don’t like the message; it sounds quite rape-culture-ish and crosses boundaries I’m not interested in crossing.

Tugboat man returns next week. I asked him if he wanted to see the film, and he said NO. Definitely NO. Definitely NOT in a public forum, that’s for sure. Being around a bunch of people who are semi or full-on aroused grossed him out, he said.

  • Have you read the book(s)?
  • Will you see the film?
  • Will you see it in theaters or in the privacy of your own home?

Happy Friday the Thirteenth, everyone!

How to Save $$ with ROVE, and My Amazing Ginger, Lime, and Cucumber Infusion Recipe

Do you know the number one tip to save mega dollars week in and week out?

Stop spending money at restaurants, food trucks, or fast food joints, and bring your own HEALTHY lunch to work or school!

I was so happy to receive a box of products from ROVE to sample and review.ROVE

ROVE is dedicated to providing fashionable, sustainable, functional and easy-to-use products that make life more comfortable for today’s active, on-the-go generation.

 

20-Ounce Double Wall Flavor Infuser Tumbler

Infuse drinks on the go with fresh or frozen fruit, flavored ice or fresh herbs.

 

 

14-Ounce Double Wall Hot & Cold Hydration Mug

Sip hot or cold beverages from anywhere around the lid with 360 degree access and a spill-proof lock.

7-Piece Laptop Iced Bento Lunch Box

The perfect lunch box for those looking for healthy, portion-controlled lunches, the BPA-free Bento Box includes multiple compartments, cutlery and an ice-pack compartment to keep food cold and fresh for hours.

ROVEI gave the Bento Box to my son, Professor Angel Boy, to ensure he eats a healthy lunch while he’s teaching at university, too far away for me to bring him home cooked Mommy meals. He loves it, uses it every day, and especially likes the spoon and fork that have their own snap-in compartments. Along with the Hot & Cold Hydration Mug, he can bring soup or a smoothie, and I can worry a little less.

I LOVE infused beverages and created this recipe especially for ROVE.
lime ginger cucumber infusion

Ginger, Lime, and Cucumber Infusion Recipe

It’s so simple and SO refreshing!
Three ingredients:
1. Lime (I picked mine from our tree)
2. Peel and cut cucumber into spears
3. One-inch piece of peeled ginger

Place in infusion container, add water.
SO GOOD!

limecucumbergingerinfusion2I admire a company with a philosophy like ROVE:
[from their website: http://www.ttustore.com/brands-licensees/rove-2/%5D

“rove invites you to actively share our vision for a better, greener Earth. 73 billion disposable cups and plastic water bottles – 234 per person – ended up in U.S. landfills in 2010,* draining our natural resources while producing millions of pounds of waste and high levels of greenhouse gases, which cause climate change.

It’s time to take action. The solution is simple. Switch to an Earth-friendly reusable cup, tumbler or bottle, and you can eliminate 234 disposable cups and plastic water bottles, while saving energy, water and materials. That means less waste, less pollution, and more natural resources for our planet.”

As always, I was provided with products to sample and review, and was not compensated in any way. The opinions are mine.

Oy Vey, Jon Stewart, You Broke My Heart

NOOOOOOOOOOOOO!

And right before Valentine’s Day!

HOW COULD YOU DO THIS TO ME, MY LOVE?

Did you hear the news?

My secret fantasy, the love of my life, my all-time JewCrush, has broken my heart.

I’m verklempt.

OY, the PAIN!

#1 JewMom heartthrob: Jon Stewart.

Jon’s Goodbye
http://www.vanityfair.com/hollywood/2015/02/jon-stewart-goodbye-the-daily-show

(We profess love for the dreamy Max Greenfield — Schmidt of “New Girl” — however, he’s a bit young for a true midlife fantasy as he’s about the same age of our sons — and there’s something not quite right with that scenario, if you know what I mean.)

Don’t misunderstand —  I have a special place in my heart for my erstwhile tugboat man; after all, we’ve been married for just about twenty-one years, but JON STEWART owns a huge piece of my heart (the Jewish part.)

Those blue eyes, that soupçon of unruly hair that falls rakishly across his forehead, his sort of creepy and girlish giggle — even his UBER hairy hands — no one else measures up.

His wit, his humor, his singular delivery, even his SINGING — I’m fanning myself- what will I do?

How will I survive?

What about NEWS? What about VIEWPOINT?

Don’t worry, hub knows all about how I feel about Jon — he shares the love — and never misses “Your Moment of Zen”.

We trust The Daily Show to deliver the kind of UN-biased news that reflects our perspective, our cynical and mocking attitude toward all that is political…

And he has rescue dogs! Rescue! Dogs!

I’m planning a trip to the east coast to visit Professor Angel Boy; WHAT IF I WAS IN THE AUDIENCE FOR A TAPING OF JON’S SHOW?

WHAT IF WE MET? 

That would be totally awesome.

TOTALLY AWESOME.

The stuff of dreams, my friends. The stuff of dreams.

Jon’s First Daily Show

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/11/28/jon-stewart-first-daily-episode_n_2204750.html


My previous posts about Jon Stewart:

Dear Jonathon Stuart Lebowitz

http://enchantedseashells.com/2013/01/26/dear-jonathan-stuart-leibowitz/

The Real Meaning of Thanksgiving

http://enchantedseashells.com/2012/11/21/the-real-meaning-of-thanksgiving-enjoy/

 

 

 

Happy 100th Birthday, Mommy!

Sometimes, caring for a terminally ill grandma is a beautifully tragic way to learn compassion.

Best mom and grandma EVER.

She was born February 9, 1915
and would have been
one hundred years old today.

I’m often asked where I learned how to cook and bake. I learned it all from her — everything from scratch, and that’s how I do it, too, carrying on that tradition.

Once in a while, tugboat man will surprise his crew by baking for them and it’s her recipe he uses: The Compleat Apple Pie…Deconstructed 

You know how I love to clean? That’s because she made a game out of washing windows, polishing silver; even ironing. She made it all fun, never a chore.

When Angel Boy had his medical scare a while back, it was my mom whom I channeled in the hospital. I remembered every single thing she ever shared with me about being a strong, assertive patient advocate — how to interact with doctors and staff — and to NEVER leave the side of a loved one, which is the reason why DIL and I were there 24/7 for the almost two weeks he was hospitalized.  We all firmly believe this is one of the reasons he’s here today. REALLY.

On a happier note, all I  know about fashion and style, shopping and Chanel, I learned from my mom and I’m more than happy to carry on that legacy.

When I spray on my favorite scent, Chance by Chanel, before I leave for the gym, I remember more of my mom’s words of wisdom:

“Don’t save good perfume for special occasions. Wear it every day just for you.”

When my mom retired from nursing, she moved in with us. After suffering from months of unexplained stomach pain and nausea, she was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. Sadly, she didn’t live very long after that.

We cared for her with the help of hospice and she died peacefully at home.

Toward the end, after school, my seven-year-old son would climb on her bed, tell her about his day and feed her a couple spoonfuls of soup.

Sometimes, caring for a terminally ill grandma is a beautifully tragic way to learn compassion.

Angel Boy and my mom had a special bond; she would play Candyland for HOURS with had endless patience. When he was two or three or four years old, whenever he’d call out “MOM!” we would both answer, because for the longest time, that’s how he referred to us both– until he named her “DangDang”, which is how his brain processed the sounds in “Grandma”.

She would have been so very proud of him.

When Angel Boy finished graduate school, I bought him an Hermes tie because that’s what Grandma would have done — memorialize the occasion with an amazingly extravagant gift.

I can think of no better way to honor her memory than to shop for a little something special, ‘cos that’s exactly what she’d want me to do!

A few of my favorite vintage photos:

Stylish nurse ensemble.
I still have her cap and velvet ribbon tucked away, wrapped in tissue paper. 

MommyRN

Lovely afternoon skirt, blouse, and contrasting belt to highlight her curves.
Mommy

Me (very yellow with frilly socks) with Mommy, attired in a full-on Jackie Kennedy look minus the pillbox hat.meandmommy

Frank Sinatra was one of her FAVES.. She used to annoy me SO much by singing along with Old Blue Eyes whenever this song came on the radio: “It Was A Very Good Year”

Passionately Purple

We didn’t have much of a winter here in SoCal — just a couple cold days around the end of 2014 — and now buds are bursting and flowers are blooming.purple stock flowers

Happy Sunday!

purple stock flowers

Here’s Why We Should Help Dearborn Wolf Sanctuary (Please)

I’m reposting this because there was something faulty with the Paypal link and I want to make sure that everyone has an opportunity to help.


I’ve always loved wolves; I first became an active defender in the 70s, doing what I could to support their originally being listed as an Endangered Species, and more recently, I provided testimony at the Fish and Wildlife Services hearing in Sacramento.

I wrote about that experience here: Saving Wolves

It doesn’t seem right that in 2015, we are continually correcting misconceptions about wolves and fighting stereotypes — like that Superbowl ad.  We need to end — once and for all — the barbaric hunting contests of wolves, coyotes, bears, mountain lions, and bobcats

The wolf is an amazing animal that deserves to be protected and defended.

And saved.

However,

…Not everybody is as well-funded as Capt. Watson and his Sea Shepherd defenders and protectors of ocean creatures.

…Not everybody has the fundraising savvy of PETA or Defenders of Wildlife.

…Not every organization has a Washington, DC lobbyist.

But that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t help others who dedicate their lives and sacrifice everything to save animals in danger.

There are angels all over this country who are committed to 24/7 care of abused and neglected wolves.

There are those heroes among us who DO the work, even though they might not be PR or social media savvy and have a staff to handle all the admin duties.

I admire the men and women who are in the trenches, the boots-on-the-ground caregivers  who feed and love and care for these beautiful and much maligned animals.

Dearborn Wolf Sanctuary can REALLY use our help. 

His mission is simple but very powerful:

” We rescue wolves and wolf-hybrids that are unwanted, abused, etc. We give them a loving home with three acres to run and play, and all the food they can eat.”

I donated a couple months ago, and I’m going to donate again.

Will you help, too? 

Dearborn Wolf Sanctuary is a nonprofit organization.
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/dearborn.wolfsanctuary

Please contact him to offer any hands on help, too.

How to donate:

Check or money order to:

Dearborn Wolf Sanctuary
31 Cox Creek Ln.
Cascade, Montana 59421

or

PAYPAL:
https://www.paypal.com/us/cgi-bin/webscr?cmd=_flow&SESSION=BRUfIKsNIM2LEE4cF1ysnfQFr2iE8uPkBbYvYAV-4YoQWmLJCkTbo8OuwPm&dispatch=5885d80a13c0db1f8e263663d3faee8da8649a435e198e44a05ba053bc68d12e

THANK YOU for donating and PLEASE share/reblog with your friends and readers…sometimes it takes a village to pitch in and help.

***Would anyone like to work with me on an ongoing fundraising campaign to help Dearborn Wolf Sanctuary? 

Why We Should Help Dearborn Wolf Sanctuary (Please)

I’m reposting this because there was something faulty with the Paypal link and I want to make sure that everyone has an opportunity to help. 

I’ve always loved wolves; I first became active in the 70s, doing what I could to support their originally being listed as an Endangered Species, and more recently, I spoke at the Fish and Wildlife Services hearing in Sacramento.

I wrote about that experience here: Saving Wolves

The wolf is an amazing animal that deserves to be protected and defended.

And saved.

However,

…Not everybody is as well-funded as Capt. Watson and his Sea Shepherd defenders and protectors of ocean creatures.

…Not everybody has the fundraising savvy of PETA or Defenders of Wildlife.

…Not every organization has a Washington, DC lobbyist.

But that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t help others who dedicate their lives and sacrifice everything to save animals in danger.

There are angels all over this country who are committed to 24/7 care of abused and neglected wolves.

There are those heroes among us who DO the work, even though they might not be PR or social media savvy and have a staff to handle all the admin duties.

I admire the men and women who are in the trenches, the boots-on-the-ground caregivers  who feed and love and care for these beautiful and much maligned animals.

Dearborn Wolf Sanctuary can REALLY use our help. 

His mission is simple but very powerful:

” We rescue wolves and wolf-hybrids that are unwanted, abused, etc. We give them a loving home with three acres to run and play, and all the food they can eat.”

I donated a couple months ago, and I’m going to donate again.

Will you help, too? 

Dearborn Wolf Sanctuary is a nonprofit organization.
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/dearborn.wolfsanctuary

Please contact him to offer any hands on help, too.

How to donate:

Check or money order to:

Dearborn Wolf Sanctuary
31 Cox Creek Ln.
Cascade, Montana 59421

or

PAYPAL:
https://www.paypal.com/us/cgi-bin/webscr?cmd=_flow&SESSION=BRUfIKsNIM2LEE4cF1ysnfQFr2iE8uPkBbYvYAV-4YoQWmLJCkTbo8OuwPm&dispatch=5885d80a13c0db1f8e263663d3faee8da8649a435e198e44a05ba053bc68d12e

THANK YOU for donating and PLEASE share/reblog with your friends and readers…sometimes it takes a village to pitch in and help.

***Would anyone like to work with me on a fundraising campaign to help Dearborn Wolf Sanctuary?

[Lavender Haiku] #Poetry #Photo #Wordless Wednesday

garden lavender

Photo credit: Enchanted Seashells, Confessions of a Tugboat Captain’s Wife

Late afternoon sun
Perfuming a slight warm breeze
Lavender grows here

 By Princess Rosebud

Best 100% Whole Wheat Bread Recipe

Easy+Spectacular 100% Whole Wheat BreadWhen my tugboat man’s home or when my son is here, I bake a lot.

When I’m alone, I don’t bake or cook at all; I guess that’s why I enjoy it as much as I do.

Sometimes the results are great; sometimes they end up in the compost bin.

And I’m OK with that; I love to experiment and put my own spin on established recipes.

Without a doubt, THIS is the absolute BEST 100% whole wheat bread I’ve ever made.

I have a Kitchen Aid stand mixer, but you can use a hand mixer with the bread hook attachment. And if you don’t have that, you can go totally old school with a big bowl, a wooden spoon, and get a great upper body work out. Sometimes I still make bread that way just to prove to myself that I can.

Easy + Spectacular Whole Wheat Bread 

One cup warm water (not too hot)
1/4 cup orange juice (I used fresh squeezed)
One packet yeast
1/4 cup agave syrup (honey or molasses works, too)
1/4 cup vegetable oil
3 1/2 cups 100% whole wheat flour, approximately.
One teaspoon sea salt

Mix water and orange juice plus agave in large bowl. Sprinkle yeast on top; stir.

Cover with a cloth for a few minutes to allow the yeast to bloom.

All at once, add, oil, THREE cups of flour, and salt.

With paddle attachment, mix for about three or four minutes. Switch over to the bread hook attachment and knead approximately 8-10 minutes, adding the last 1/2 (or so) cup flour a little at a time.

When the dough begins to form a ball and pull away from the sides, turn it out onto a floured board and knead by hand until it’s soft and pliable, not sticky.

Oil a bowl for rising, add dough, cover with plastic, and then cover with dishcloth. Let rise until it doubles in size. I like to find a non-drafty location like the oven or on top of a dryer.

When it’s doubled (about two hours), punch down gently and let sit on floured cutting board for a few minutes. Here’s my quick technique for shaping bread for a loaf pan.

Pat the dough into a rectangle — you don’t need to measure or be all OCD about it…

Fold in half. Starting at the folded side, roll into a cigar shape, pinch the edges closed, and pop into a loaf pan.

Try not to use too much extra flour ‘cos that will make it tough and dry.

Let it rise again for about thirty minutes or until the bread rises above the rim of the pan. Toward the end of the rising time, preheat the oven to 400 degrees.

Bake about thirty-forty minutes, checking to make sure it doesn’t become too brown. You can always cover the top with a piece of aluminum foil the last five minutes or so of baking.

When it’s done, let it cool for five minutes in the pan, then turn the bread onto a rack to finish cooling. Tap the bottom of the loaf with your fingers to see if it gives off a hollow sound. Then you know for sure it’s done.

Does this sound very tedious and time consuming? Just do it a couple of times, and it’ll be come second nature to you.

Homemade bread is SO much superior to store bought, chemical and preservative-laden bread. The texture of this bread is finely grained and tender; almost cake-like.easy+spectacular100%wholewheatbread1

#vegan