Month: November 2014

MasterChef Junior: Sunny Side Up

And we’re back!  Hope you all had lovely Thanksgivings!  You might be super full from yesterday, or you might be craving those leftovers in the fridge… either way, I hope you’re ready talk about this week’s MasterChef Junior!

The fist challenge of the episode played a bigger role in the elimination challenge than usual.  This challenge was all about something I never tire of, sunny side up eggs!  Now, I do count myself a sunny side expert, but I have a couple of tricks that I don’t think would’ve gone down in the MasterChef kitchen.  These kids had to cook as many perfect sunny side up eggs as they could according to Gordon, Joe, and Graham’s standards of perfection.

  • Abby only got 2 eggs perfect
  • Oona and Adaiah made 4 perfect eggs each
  • Levi and Josh both made 5
  • Logan cooked 7 perfect eggs
  • Samuel cooked 8 perfect eggs
  • Sean cooked 10, the highest amount of perfect eggs out there!

It wasn’t a traditional win, though.  The elimination challenge then became to cook their signature dishes.  The number of eggs then equaled the number of ingredients they could use.  Abby remains pretty calm, despite having only two ingredients to work with.  Gordon gives her a hug for luck.

Graham spoke of himself at age 23 and how he met and was inspired by Gordon Ramsay.  Precious!  The three judges went around to each work station and talked to the kids about their future restaurants.  8-year-old Abby’s veterinary clinic/restaurant Horses and Courses is one of unique concepts put forth, but points for that name though, girl.  I love how Logan seems to giggle at her concept like it’s ridiculous, then says his restaurant will be underwater.  I couldn’t love anything about that more, actually.

Here’s what these brilliant little chefs come up with for signature dishes:

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  • Making the most of her 2 ingredients, Abby prepares a perfectly cooked salmon and asparagus 5 ways.  Gordon says he will have a “fluorescent time in the bathroom later” from eating all this asparagus and I still haven’t recovered from laughing at this.
  • For Sean, the steak is overcooked, more of a medium.  The sauce gets high praise, though.
  • Levi’s salmon is definitely overcooked without a hint of translucence.
  • Adaiah is praised for her smart ingredient choices and nice dish.
  • Oona’s dish looks beautiful, but her scallops add to the list over overcooked proteins.  Watching her hang her head in disappointment and tear up made me tear up too!  I cannot stand to see this cutie cry again.
  • Logan’s rice is overcooked and missing salt.  He too starts to cry and I lose it all over again, but Gordon gives him a hug and says his steak is perfectly cooked.  Actually, he calls it amazing.
  • Josh’s duck is a little overcooked.
  • Samuel accidentally grabbed a cucumber instead of a zucchini, but modified his dish to work with it– and work it did!  Gordon gives it four mmm’s!

Abby is called out for the top after making her 2 ingredients work so hard.  Samuel’s dish wins the night, though!

There were lots of protein problems in this week’s challenge and Josh, Levi, Oona, and Sean come up to face the judges.  Fortunately for this Oona fan, she and Sean end up safe.  I was kind of expecting this to happen, for some reason.  Sadly, Josh and Levi head home.

 

So guys, I’m still Team Oona and Team Logan over here, but I think Sean’s going to take this one.  Any predictions?!

Happy T-Gives!

Happy Thanksgiving!  This year, I am especially thankful for all of you who read this silly blog.  Seriously, thank you all!

Please enjoy a couple Thanksgiving-themed clips from my favorite movie, Addams Family Values, featuring a bb Mercedes McNab who grew up to be mean girl turned vampire Harmony in Buffy/Angel and bb Christina Ricci, who does pale better than anyone else.

 

Now get off your smart phones, tablets, and laptops and enjoy your family, friends, and food!

 

With love,

N☾

Friends Thanksgiving Episodes (A Definitive Ranking)

Since Thanksgiving is my absolutely favorite holiday, I’ve been looking forward to this post since I started this blog almost a year (!) ago.  Monica Gellar shares my affinity for this holiday, and each of Friends‘ 10 seasons has a Thanksgiving episode.  Thanksgiving episodes are Friends’ things, and they do not disappoint!

So, without further ado, here is my definitive ranking of Friends Thanksgiving episodes.  Let’s count ’em down!

10. Season 10: The One with the Late Thanksgiving

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  • Context: Phoebe challenges Monica to make a better Thanksgiving dinner than the previous year, and she can’t resist a challenge, even though she was initially against making anything.  Phoebe and Rachel take Emma to a baby beauty pageant.  Joey and Ross go to a Rangers game.  Everyone is late and Monica and Chandler lock everyone out.
  • Noteworthy: The great visual gag pictured above; the heartwarming news from the adoption agency.

09. Season 7: The One Where Chandler Doesn’t Like Dogs

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  •  Context: Rachel invites Tag over for Thanksgiving dinner and debates making a move on him after his girlfriend has just dumped him.  Phoebe, staying with Monica and Chandler after her apartment fire, is secretly keeping a dog, which Chandler is supposedly allergic to.
  • Noteworthy: the 50 states games; Joey’s explanation of a moo point.

08. Season 9: The One with Rachel’s Other Sister

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  • Context: Rachel’s “other” sister Amy (Jill, played by Reese Witherspoon was the first of two sisters to appear) shows up and stays for Thanksgiving.  Amy can’t remember Emma’s name.  Arguments break out over who would hypothetically take custody of her if Rachel and Ross died.  Monica obsesses over her good china.
  • Noteworthy: Christina Applegate playing Amy makes a believable family to Rachael and Reese/Jill; crazy plate lady

07. Season 8: The One with the Rumor

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  • Context: Monica invites an old friend of hers and Ross’s from high school to Thanksgiving dinner.  Will (played by Jennifer Aniston’s then-husband Brad Pitt) has lost a lot of weight since high school and Rachel doesn’t remember him.  She flirts with him, but he still harbors hatred from high school.  Joey finishes a 19 pound turkey by himself.
  • Noteworthy: The use of Brad before JAniston fans hated him; the references to Monica, Ross, and Rachel’s high school days; Joey still having room for pie.

06. Season 4: The One with Chandler in a Box

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  • Context: To atone for kissing Joey’s former girlfriend, Chandler agrees to spend Thanksgiving in a large box.  Monica scratches her eye on some ice.  Her new eye doctor (post-break-up with Richard) is out of town and she ends up seeing Richard’s son, also an eye doctor.  Then she wears an eye patch.
  • Noteworthy: Well, it’s pretty self-explanatory… Chandler’s in a box for the majority of the episode; Gunther to Joey, I thought you were Chandler.

05. Season 1: The One Where Underdog Gets Away

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  • Context: The one that establishes it all!  Everybody’s Thanksgiving plans seem to fall through, so Monica steps up and caters to everyone planning a Thanksgiving for the six of them.  The menu includes 5 different kinds of potatoes.  We find out Monica loves Thanksgiving and that Chandler hates Thanksgiving and refuses to eat any related foods.  As the title implies, the Underdog balloon in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Parade gets loose and the gang goes to the roof to catch a glimpse.  They accidentally get locked out (Got the key-eys?) and basically everything’s ruined.
  • Noteworthy: Chandler’s vehement Thanksgiving aversion; Joey’s VD poster; early Rachel days where she works at Central Perk and literally has no money; Ugly Naked Guy & Ugly Naked Girl. 

04. Season 3: The One with the Football

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  • Context: The gang decides to play a game of Thanksgiving touch-football.  Monica and Ross get super competitive and reveal that they are “not allowed” to play football because of what happened at Gellar Bowl VI when Monica broke Ross’s nose and the Gellar Cup– a troll down nailed to a piece of wood– was thrown in a lake.  No worries– Monica retrieved the trophy.  Picking teams, no one wants Rachel.  At first it’s Monica, Joey, and Phoebe v. Ross, Chandler, and Rachel.  They switch to girls v. boys and Rachel has her moment… kind of.
  • Noteworthy: the Gellar Cup itself; the complete novelty of seeing the gang in sweatpants; the change of scenery to the outdoors.

03. Season 2: The One with the List

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  • Context: Less of a Thanksgiving episode than the others, but I love it nonetheless.  Rachel and Ross have just kissed.  Rachel is on board with moving forward with the relationship, but Ross is still torn between Rachel and Julie.  He makes a pros and cons list between Julie and Rachel to disaster effects, when Chandler’s new computer prints it right into Rachel’s hands.  Meanwhile, Monica is jobless and signs on to make some signature recipes for a new chocolate substitute, Mockolate.
  • Noteworthy: Phoebe’s song, Two of Them Kissed Last Night; Monica’s entire mockolate storyline, especially this is what evil must taste like!; she’s not Rachem.
  • Best Quote: “Or will it be the one who we’ll call …Loolie?” (Phoebe)

02. Season 6: The One Where Ross Got High

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A very close second as far as Thanksgiving episodes, and Friends episodes go!

  • Context: Monica and Chandler want to open up about their relationship to Monica’s parents, who are coming for Thanksgiving dinner.  The Gellars hate Chandler because Ross once melted his dad’s records when he was high, and told them Chandler did it.  Meanwhile, Rachel wants to contribute and Monica entrusts her with the only dessert.  She makes an English trifle, but the pages are stuck together when she’s reading the recipe and she adds beef sautéed with pees and onions.
  • Noteworthy: Joey teaching everyone how to “act” like they like Rachel’s dessert by rubbing their stomachs and saying mmm; Monica’s interpretation of that; everyone’s reaction to eating the trifle; actually everything about the trifle; Phoebe yelling I love Jacque Cuosteau; Judy Gellar dealing with everybody, but especially Rachel.
  • Best Quote: “Hurricane Gloria didn’t break the porch swing; Monica did!” (Ross)

01. Season 5: The One with All the Thanksgivings

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This is actually my favorite Friends episode period.

  • Context: Monica, Rachel, Phoebe, Ross, Chandler, and Joey have just finished their Thanksgiving meal and sit around so full.  The episode is done mostly through a series of flashbacks chronicling everyone’s worst Thanksgiving.  Chandler’s is of course when he found out his parents are getting divorced– the Thanksgiving that ruined Thanksgiving for him.  Phoebe picks a past life in which she was a nurse in war.  Joey’s is when he got a turkey stuck on his head.  Rachel recounts a couple particularly painful ones for Monica.
  • Noteworthy: Phoebe yelling “more bandages!” on the battlefield; the fat Monica/Rachel’s old nose flashbacks; Monica dancing with the turkey on her head, complete with oversized sunglasses and fez which somehow elicits Chandler’s first I love you to her.  The absolute best moment is newly skinny Monica trying to seduce Chandler which brings me to…
  • Best Quote:Ooo, I love macaroni and cheese!” (Monica)

I can’t live without this quote.  I say this all the time.  Somebody please get on my level.

I’ll admit, guys, I changed this order around a couple times writing this post, but those top 2 are etched in stone for me.  What’s your favorite Friends Thanksgiving episode?!

ANTM Cycle 21: Introducing K Songs

This week my ANTM recap comes early!  I have a little something special tomorrow for Thanksgiving, so be sure to check in for that!

The challenge last week was another acting challenge.  In South Korean, you know there had to be a K Drama challenge!  Miss J dropped of a script, and yes, some of it was in Korean.  They watch a clip of “Emergency Couple,” to get the feel of it.  Keith, our former football player, admits he doesn’t have the strongest memory.  Adam, however, chucks his script across the room after about 20 minutes convinced he’s got it down.

The challenge takes places at Namsan Tower, where there are famous love locks all around the balcony.  “Emergency Couple” stars Clara and Yoon Jong Hoon act as scene partners and everybody does a pretty awful job.  Will says that because he is gay he can not possibly act attracted to a girl.  I don’t buy this for a minute.  What’s he’s saying is that he can’t act at all.  Shei is natural on set, but makes up the Korean parts badly.  Lenox is a self-fulfilling prophecy and forgets all her lines.  Adam, of course, doesn’t remember anything either.  Keith decides to turn into his alter ego, K Song, a smooth, slow-talking flirt.  He totally wins Clara over, connecting with her.  His strategy wins him the challenge.

 

For the photo shoot of the week, the boys are Elvis and the girls are Marilyn Monroe.  My favorite part about this photo shoot is all the Korean fans screaming and getting to take part in the shoot!  Here are the results:

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And the call out order:

  • Adam
  • Keith
  • Will
  • Lenox
  • Shei

 

This leaves my girl Lenox as the last lady standing!  We’ll have a week break before the double-episode season finale.  Who do you think is going to be America’s Next Top Model?

Loretta’s Last Call

It poured all day last Monday. It didn’t let up at all. It was cold, damp, and I was in need of some delicious comfort food to combat the weather. Luckily, Loretta’s Last Call in the Fenway area provided just that!

This was my first time at Loretta’s Last Call. I am by no means a country girl, but I found the atmosphere completely charming!

rock me mama like a wagon wheel... loved these chandeliers!

rock me mama like a wagon wheel… loved these chandeliers!

 

Loretta’s Last Call treated me and a group of lovely Boston bloggers to a bunch of delicious dishes. I dined with Elissa of Style Wire, Emily of Shell Chic’d, Holly of HollyDolly, and Rachel of La Mariposa. I must admit, I was too busy eating to take pictures most of the time, so you’ll have to pop over to Elissa’s blog to see more! Here’s what we ate:

sweet potato funnel cake, tobacco onions, fried green tomatoes!

sweet potato funnel cake, tobacco onions, fried green tomatoes!

Fried Green Tomatoes with bacon ranch & picked okra
These were to die for! I had never had fried green tomatoes before, but this will certainly not be the last time I do!

Tobacco Onions
Crispy, salty, delicious onion rings!

Sweet Potato Funnel Cake
Hands-down my favorite thing I ate that day! This sweet and savory delight in unlike anything I’ve had before. It was a big hit with all the ladies.

Hushpuppies with Honey Bourbon Butter
We ate a lot of fried food that night, but these hushpuppies were not overly heavy. The slightly sweet honey bourbon butter was a nice complement.

Hot Chicken Bites
They mean hot with these! I’m a big fan of spicy things so the kick of spice was nice, but I wimped out on them. They were served with ranch, pickles, and celery— the former two helped me out.

Fried Green Tomato Biscuit with bacon
This was basically a fried green tomato sandwich with bacon. I was happy to have more of the tomato I enjoyed so much! The biscuit had such a interesting smoky flavor.

Andouille Corndogs
These sausage corndogs were fun and easy to eat! The spice was mild.

Frito Nachos
What’s not to like about Fritos covered in cheese and chili?! This was super fun to eat, because I don’t think I’d eaten Fritos since junior high. So yummy.

Double Chocolate Fudge Cake with homemade strawberry ice cream
The chef himself brought us out dessert! This was a decadent flourless chocolate cake. The strawberry ice cream was amazing. It was so fresh tasting; nothing like the artificial strawberry flavors I associate with ice cream. It was also topped with a delightful bourbon whipped cream!

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For a rainy Monday night, there were plenty of folks around but nothing overwhelming. We could hear each other talk and sway along to the live music. I’d love to come back for the weekend crowd. I’m a sucker for drinks that come in mason jars! Speaking of which, I took a sip of Emily’s Front Porch Sweet Tea— peach moonshine, lemonade and sweet tea. It was dangerously delicious; you couldn’t taste a hint of alcohol! Will be back to drink that, for sure.

If you’re in the Boston area, I recommend checking out Loretta’s Last Call!  Check them out on Twitter (@LorettasTweetin) for fun events and live music updates!

 

[Full Disclosure: Loretta’s Last Call provided our food. All opinions are my own.]

MasterChef Junior: Cupcakes & Home Cookin’

From one dessert challenge to another, the kids of MasterChef had a special mystery box waiting for them this week: another box… of cupcakes! Graham grabs one, and Joe another.  Gordon then invites the kids to come up and take one.  Oona announces that it’s the best challenge, since they get to eat cupcakes!  They then find out that that’s their challenge: 75 minutes to make a dozen cupcakes.

It’s not that simple, though, as this is their first team challenge.  They are paired off based on which cupcake the grabbed– Mitchell and Abby are together, Samuel and Adaiah, Sean and Logan, Josh and Oona, Levi and Sam.  They pull off their mystery boxes to reveal one more twist.  Inside is a leg tie and a waist tie.  It’s a three-legged cupcake challenge!

Four hands, three legs, two brains, one box, and twelve stunning cupcakes.

The judges taste:

the dynamic duo of the expertly color-coordinate Logan & Sean win!

the dynamic duo of the expertly color-coordinated Logan & Sean win!

This puts Sean and Logan in control of the elimination challenge.  For this challenge, Gordon speaks of his favorite home cook, his mum.  When he yells Mum! out comes Mrs. Ramsay with the three choices for the kids to elevate to restaurant-quality: chicken curry, shepherd’s pie, or a fish finger sandwich.

Logan and Sean enjoy tea & treats from the balcony as the remaining 8 in the kitchen are faced with shepherd’s pie!  They get to Skype their moms for a little inspiration, which is tear-inducing in its adorableness.

There are some bumps along the way.  Samuel is rather disorganized throughout and has the second mashed potato breakdown of the season.  He’s seemed stressed all episode, and when he starts crying over milky-mashed, Graham comes to the rescue.  Graham suggests he make a pea purée, using the potatoes to thicken it into a pea mash.  Sounds good to me!

Oona seems a bit out of sorts too, but Gordon thinks so highly of her that he tried to marry her off to his son during the cupcake challenge!

Here’s how the shepherd’s pies turn out:

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  • Oona (top left) is not confident as she brings her curry sheperd’s pie forth.  Joe calls her plating “rustic,” so let’s go with that.  Everyone is very impressed with her delicious mashed potatoes, though!
  • Can you even believe this plate (top center) came from an 8-year-old?!  Abby’s shepherd’s pie is delicious, but needs more seasoning if anything.
  • With his Moroccan shepherd’s pie, Samuel (top right) is starting to separate himself from the pack.
  • Josh’s deconstructed dish (middle left) is spot on when it comes to seasoning and presentation.
  • Levi’s shepherd’s pie (middle center) elicits a, “Dude, this thing is firing on all cylinders!”
  • Mitchell’s shepherd’s pie (middle right) is not the best visually, and Gordon comments that the taste is strange.
  • Adaiah’s (bottom left & bottom center) is delicious!  And so pretty!  Her dual sauces are inspired by Gordon & his mum– one spicy, the other more mild.
  • Sam (bottom right) puts out a beautiful looking plate, but the beef is very dry.

The winners of the challenge: Adaiah and Levi!  Both are proving to be strong competitors.

The lowest scores are Mitchell, Sam, and Oona who laments:

I’m going home.  Live with it!

MasterChef Junior did not want to lose our perfect little drama queen, Oona, either and she heads back to her bench.  Sam and Mitchell must go home.

Cry Count: When Oona cried bringing her dish up, you’re not human if you don’t cry! (episode total: 1 / season total: 5)

 

Guys, Levi and Adaiah might be killing it, but my eyes are on Sean and Logan right now.  Of course, I’m looking for Oona to make a big comeback!  Who do you think is looking like a winner?!

Top Chef Boston: First Thanksgiving

The Top Chef house is greeted by a lovely guest– Boston’s own Tiffani Faison, Top Chef season 1 alum.  I was just talking about Tiffani and her restaurant with some Boston bloggers earlier this week, so it was especially nice to see her on my TV!

Well, Tiffani takes the chefs on a little field trip to an Ocean Spray cranberry bog.  Growing up, our sports teams were part of the Cranberry Conference, so like, they’re pretty important to Massachusetts.  I’ve been super into cranberries as of late, be they in my sangria or dried and in cookies.  I’ve never had to harvest cranberries, though, which are cheftestants have to do.  The first four to fill up their crates get an advantage in the Quickfire!  Katie, Adam, Gregory, and Doug finish in that order.

Back at the Top Chef kitchen, Padma and Tiffani announce the cranberry Quickfire.  The 4 winners of the cranberry harvest get to use a high quality pantry to make a dish highlighting cranberries.  The rest of the cheftestants have a lower quality pantry of packaged goods.  Tiffani tells them to stay away from Thanksgiving and to make a year-round cranberry dish.

  • Mei has no problem with the lower quality ingredients.  She makes “sweet and sour pork, homie” that lands her in the top 3.
  • Doug’s doesn’t exactly take Tiffani away from Thanksgiving, but she says it “tastes like fall in New England.”  If you’ve been to New England in the fall, you’d know there’s no higher compliment than that.  Doug lands in the top 3.
  • Katie made cranberry borscht which a lot of people were skeptical of.  It worked out, though, since she won the Quickfire and immunity for the elimination challenge.
  • Katsuji, who used skirt steak for tartar, Adam, who didn’t even like his dish, and Stacy, who’s been struggling under the pressure of representing the city, are the bottom 3.

For the elimination challenge, the cheftestants are headed to Plimouth Plantation to cook and honor the First Thanksgiving.

Plimouth Plantation is a horrible field trip, and I’d imagine, an equally horrible place in which to cook.  There are a lot of pits and spits and smoking.  Traditional First Thanksgiving fare includes a lot of seafood.  Duh guys, this is Massachusetts!  Plymouth is coastal.

Tom is joined by Ken Oringer as he checks on the cheftestants.  All the smoke has everyone’s eyes watering.  “I guess some of the tears will give some flavor to my food,” ventures Katsuji.  Gregory thinks, “in the spirit of Thanksgiving, getting a bird on the table is important,” as he cooks goose inside a sweltering hut.

The Top Chef Thanksgiving table of course includes Tom, Ken, Padma, Gail, descendants of the Mayflower, and Wampanoag tribe members.

Here’s what the table is served:

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The cool thing is that all of the dishes are really well received.  Everyone impressed at this table, and I had no idea who to expect to be on the bottom!

On top this week are Doug, Katsuji, and Mei, who are all very much proving they’re forces to be reckoned with.  Katsuji wins!

On the bottom this week are Stacy, Melissa, and Gregory.  I’m sad to see all of them there.  I’m sad to see Stacy be asked to pack her knives, but there’s always Last Chance Kitchen!  Plus, Stacy seemed really relieved to get rid of that pressure.

With restaurant wars coming up next, it seems so unfair that we have to wait until December!

What did you think of The First Thanksgiving on Top Chef: Greater Boston Area?

ANTM Cycle 21: Go-Sees in Seoul

The challenge for the week is Go-Sees!  Go-Sees are to ANTM as Restaurant Wars is to Top Chef.  It’s really neat to see these ~models~ interact with real designers to see how they’d fair in real life situations and not on a reality TV show.  The group is to pair off, and no one wants to work with Chantelle.  Will grabs Shei and Lenox snatches up Adam.  Keith, who is unsure if Chantelle has a crush on him or thinks of him as a big brother, bites the bullet and works with Chantelle.

  • Will and Shei make it to 4 go-sees.  Will is too tall for all of the designers’ clothes and he gets uncomfortable about it.  Shei’s look is a bit too edgy for most of the designers.  One asked why her eyebrows are two different colors, and I’m like, because Tyra said they’re going to be!  [Will books 0 / Shei books 2]
  • Lenox and Adam make it to 4 go-sees, and get back to Nylon with mere seconds to spare.  Lenox is a big hit with all of the designers.  Adam, struggling with his personality sober, comes off as stiff. [Lenox books 4 / Adam books 1]
  •  Keith and Chantelle make it to 5 go-sees.  Keith’s strategy is to be as charming as possible, having learned the word for “thank you” in Korean and deploying it as often as possible.  Chantelle has no strategy and comes off as cold. [Keith books 4 / Chantelle books 1]

Though Keith and Lenox both booked the same number, Keith attended one additional go-see so he wins!

The week’s photo shoot features one of the designers from the go-sees, Jinny Kim, and her fabulous shoes.  Here are the results!

Keith was amazing this week! | Lenox's photo isn't my favorite, but those Jinny Kim shoes are FIERCE! | I'm obsessed with the wardrobe styling for Adam's shoot.  The picture is okay. | Shei's photo bothers me because you can barely see the shoes! | Chantelle's photo has no life at all. | Tyra made a great choice directing Will to put up that umbrella.  Lovely overall photo.

Keith was amazing this week! | Lenox’s photo isn’t my favorite, but those Jinny Kim shoes are FIERCE! | I’m obsessed with the wardrobe styling for Adam’s shoot. The picture is okay. | Shei seemed to forget it was a shoe photoshoot. | Chantelle’s photo has no life at all. | Tyra made a great choice directing Will to put up that umbrella. Lovely overall photo.

And the judges’ results:

  1. Keith
  2. Lenox
  3. Will
  4. Shei
  5. Adam
  6. Chantelle

Adam and Chantelle are in the bottom for the same reason– stiffness and control.  Adam is starting to loosen up and is entering into a new, sober chapter in his ANTM stint.  He stays.  Chantelle, who brought the drama back to the season in a post-Marjana world, has a bad attitude and definitely a lot of growing up to do.  She goes home, and this time, I am not sad to see her go.

What did you guys think of Chantelle’s second elimination?

And let’s not forget, this episode is called “The Girl Who Gets Caught in a Lie.” I left all that out, but if you want to chat about Chantelle’s “Panda” problem or her awkward and embarrassing lie, leave me a comment!

Lip Therapy

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it’s chapstick and chapped lips and things like chemistry ♪

That’s a song that I liked when I was in like, junior high?  I still love that line, though.

I find it particularly relevant at times like these, because it’s chapped lip season!  This is not particularly exciting, but it does give us a chance to talk about my favorite products to keep lips soft.  I’m guilty of neglecting mine, and right now I’m doing some damage control from cracking and flaking.  Gross!  Here are my favorite lip products:

Burt’s Bees

Burt’s Bees Beeswax lip balm was the first lip care product I was ever truly excited about using. The original beeswax kind is minty and has an appropriate tingle that feels like you are repairing damage.  Once the honey version came out, I was in love with it.  That became my go-to chapped lip fix and was always in my purse.  Nowadays, I’m completely loving their tinted lip balm.  It’s nearly impossible for me to wear lip color with my lips in bad shape, so this supplies that while moisturizing.  The color is not overwhelming.  I’m pretty fair and I’ve been rocking the darkest shade, Red Dahlia, without feeling like it’s a bold lip.

Baby Lips

Eventually, my Burt’s Bees with honey was replaced by several of these in my purse.  Maybelline’s Baby Lips is “clinical care for baby soft lips.”  I honestly use this all year round to keep my lips from splitting, as they are prone to do.  I have three varieties, all of which were in my purse until recently when I decided that was excessive.  I have two colorless varieties: Quenched, which is my go-to, and Peppermint, which is the first I bought and a favorite in the winter.  I also bought the neutral colored Peach Kiss, which really doesn’t add color but does keep my lips moisturized.

EOS

I’m sure you’ve seen EOS Smooth Spheres around, but these egg-shaped lip balms are totally worth the hype.  EOS, which stands for Evolution of Smooth, has very gentle but effective lip products.  I started using this when my lips were at their worst and it made such a difference!  I purchased both the Sweet Mint and the Vanilla Mint varieties, and I am definitely looking to add to my collection.  There are ten types in total right now.  Sweet Mint is kind of a favorite of mine when it comes to both flavor and scent, so I favor this little sphere.

 

What are your favorite lip products for this season?

Also, if someone could recommend me a good lip exfoliant, I’d be very interested!

Sailor Moon Crystal Act 10: Thoughts

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Act 10 – Moon, was a visually lovely episode that did a lot to advance the storyline!  With the inner senshi assembled and mysteries starting to unfurl, Sailor Moon Crystal is finally establishing itself as a distinct piece of the Sailor Moon collective.  I’m in.  I was in before, but I think I’m taking it a lot more seriously now.  Let’s talk about Act 10.

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Okay, remember what I was complaining about last episode?  I guess someone was listening to me, because we finally got to see the girls in logical street clothes.  This is a classic Usagi outfit too.  I appreciated this.

Venus is still acting like a know-it-all if you ask me, but that’ll fade now that the rest of the senshi have past life memories.

This was my favorite scene simply because it reminded me of the original Sailor Moon anime and the beginning notes of Moonlight Densetsu played in my head...

This was my favorite scene simply because it reminded me of the original Sailor Moon anime and the beginning notes of Moonlight Densetsu played in my head…

A trip to the moon poses many logistical questions that were not lost on resident brain, Ami-chan.  You’ve got to love how they at least addressed that this is semi-scientific, but whatever they went there by magic.  I was pleased with holographic Queen Serenity’s explanation of their past lives taking place before the Earth cycle started over.  What begs questioning is:

  • Why is Queen Serenity’s daughter’s name Princess Serenity?  Why would she name her that?  Who does she think she is, Lorelai Gilmore?
  • Why have no scientists discovered remains of civilization on the moon?  For the record, completely LOVED that they were directed to land in Mare Serenitatis, the Sea of Serenity.  This is an actual moon location.  Don’t you think this show is brilliant?!
  • What does it mean when Queen Serenity says that they were reborn as human females this time?  I guess that’s the big takeaway of the episode, the purpose of their rebirth.

The most interesting reveal to me in this episode was the Four Kings of Heaven.  The four generals that serve Queen Beryl and terrorize the Sailor Senshi are brainwashed versions of the four guardians of Prince Endymion.  Oh, and also, in past lives these four were in love with the four inner senshi.  (Does this make it canon, guys?!)

  • Jadeite, the knight of patience and harmony, was previously in love with Sailor Mars.
  • Nephrite, the knight of intelligence and comfort, was previously in love with Sailor Jupiter.
  • Zoisite, the knight of purification and healing, was previously in love with Sailor Mercury.
  • Kunzite, the knight of purity and affection, was previously in love with Sailor Venus.

I could talk about this all day.  I’m so interested in these pairings and if anymore is to come of them in Sailor Moon Crystal.

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As for attacks, Sailor Moon’s Moon Healing Escalation came from SPACE in this episode, which was pretty neat.  This is also the first time we’ve seen a Sailor Planet Attack and it was awesome.

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Actual important things that come from this episode include the Legendary Silver Crystal, now a handy dandy necklace thanks to Usagi’s dad, is just that at the moment.  It’s power resides in Mamoru.  Speaking of Mamoru, he’s returning to Earth a brainwashed Beryl supported.  This is going to be complicated.

I don’t think I can wait until December for a new episode!

What did you guys think of Act 10?