Wednesday, July 29, 2009

The Eagle Scout

When my brother, who is now 18 (ohmygodistillcantbelieveit), was born, I was 8 and my sister was 6. This meant that my dear parents had had 8 straight years of all things "girl."

And do I mean GIRL! From Barbies to dress-up, tea parties to American Girl Dolls - we were two of the pinkest and purplest little things in town. Then, suddenly on a snowy morning in December, the world of "boy" entered our lives. Thinking back on it, my Dad must have been so thrilled to have a little more testosterone in our otherwise estrogen-laden abode.

It wasn't long before toy trucks and cars littered the family room floor. Pastels were replaced with the primary colors. Army men and plastic swords were the new "it" thing at our place. Our world was officially, and so wonderfully, a boy's world - and I have LOVED every minute of it.

Watching my brother grow into the young man that he currently is has been, without a shadow of a doubt, one of the greatest gifts I have been given. This kid blows me away. He is far, far more intelligent than my sister and I combined. He is gracious, caring and one of the funniest people I know. I could go on and on. Gosh I am getting teary eyed thinking about it. I just love him SOOOO much! For all these reasons and more, it was such a pleasure and an honor to attend his Eagle Court of Honor this past Monday evening.

After years and years of hard work and hiding from all his friends that he was still in Boy Scouts ( I cannot judge him for this. I was in Girl Scouts until 7th grade and I too hid that from all of my friends) he finally achieved the top honor: Eagle Scout.

As I walked in, I noticed that all of friends were sitting in the second row. Surprised, I asked my brother, "What are they doing here? I thought you were too cool to tell them about this?"

"Well, I'm not embarrassed anymore. A lot of Marines are Eagle Scouts, so it's cool now," he replied.

Okay. Whatever BOY!

The Eagle Court of Honor, for those who have never attended one, is very much about the ceremony and tradition. I couldn't help but feel like when my Dad and Grandpa had their Eagle Court of Honor years ago, it was pretty darn similar.

This was where it all took place at the front of the room. Can you tell that men did the decorating? No offense to anyone, but I thought it could have used a little more spice, but what do I know?

Here is my brother, and the other young man receiving his Eagle Scout honor that night, doing a little pre-ceremony run-down. Both of the boys had to make speeches and I think they were quite nervous at this point.

To get things started, some of the younger scouts did a candle lighting ceremony and stated all of the principles of being a Boy Scout. I was kind of obsessed with how cute they were. There is just something about kids nervously having to do things in front of people when you can tell they would rather be doing about a million other things - it entertains me to no end.

Here are the two honorees looking on during the candle lighting ceremony. Don't look too thrilled boys, and, for goodness sakes, sit up! Sheesh...

Before the boys had to make their speeches, many of the parents who have been involved in the running of the troop got to say a few words. This is my Dad imparting his wisdom to the crowd. An Eagle Scout himself, he was determined to get my brother to the finish line and was a huge part of the whole production.

Next up, time for the C-Man (also known as Conor) to give his speech. I just loved seeing him up there. This kid is a natural at public speaking and I stood there just feeling so proud of him.

Please know that I am well aware that when I talk about my brother I sound like I am talking about my own child. I can't help it. We have often joked that Conor has 3 Moms. I don't think he finds it as funny as we do.

He looks like such a man! I am still trying to get over the fact that he has armpit hair and doesn't want to hold my hand when we cross the street. Lord help me when I have my own children.

Oh my brother. Once again, I am so very proud. Congratulations on yet another achievement! I know this was not always an easy thing for you to stick with, care about and hide from your friends, but you did it.

Next up? College. Get ready my friend. You are about to read like you have never read before. Freedom is right at your fingertips, but with freedom comes responsibility, and with responsibility comes consequences and with consequences comes your sisters always on the sidelines saying, "I told you so!" Just kidding.

Kind of.

PS - Some of you may have noticed that my brother's sash is going the wrong way. This is due to the fact that when my Dad was a wee little scout himself, my Grandma accidentally messed up his sash. Then, years and years later when my brother's sash was being made, my Step-Mom simply copied how my Dad's had been, and so the mistake continued. Oops!

Monday, July 27, 2009

I'm melting, meellttiinnnggg

"What dreadful hot weather we have! It keeps me in a continual state of inelegance"
- Jane Austin

It is not often that we Oregonians experience extreme hot weather. In fact, you can pretty much count on one hand the amount of weeks we get that produce such sweltering heat - but this is surely one of them. It was 103 degrees today and is supposed to be 105 tomorrow.

Somebody stick a fork in me 'cause I'm done.

People of the world - we are melting. That's right. The state of Oregon is slowly but surely liquefying into oblivion. We are not made for this out here. Our delicate winter-white skin is just not equipped to handle such an on-slot of torridity. 

You see, in a place like this where extreme heat is not often a part of our lives, many of us do not have air conditioners. We just don't. It's like people in So. California rarely having umbrellas. (***Side note: When I was attending Chapman University in Southern California, I actually had class cancelled one day because of rain. Just rain. That's it. I couldn't believe it.***) So alas there is no escape, no reprieve. We are left to standing in front of the open freezer, cold showers and hour after hour of heat-induced idleness. It's a sticky, sweaty mess, and it isn't pretty, dudes. 

Oh Oregon, love of mine - where is the relief? The weather man says that this is hear to stay for about another week. 

Excuse me while I go cry and bathe in a tub full of ice.

Friday, July 24, 2009

Blah Blah Blahbity Blah

Today is one of those days that is just annoyingly uneventful. Do you ever feel like that? It's like - where is the spark, the zest, the oomph in today? I haven't found it.

In fact, many days are like that and I am usually fine with it as I am a being that somewhat thrives on routine - but for some reason today, I seem to have my knickers in a twist about it.

There I go channeling the English again. This is bound to happen more and more often as I marry and start my life with my Limey fiance. Don't worry...I can call him that. He calls me a "Yank" all of the time. Then I shoot a gun in the air and he enjoys some tea and crumpets and we move on with our lives. Not really...I am just perpetuating stereotypes. Why? Because I wanna.

Anyway, yeah...I wish I had something more interesting to say. I think my slightly-crabby and definitely aloof little mood is mostly due to the fact that it is Friday and tonight I will be spending it at the gym.


I HATE the gym so very, very much - but I have made a vow with myself to workout 4x per week and gosh darnit, I will stick to it if it is the last thing I do. I went Monday and Wednesday, which leaves me tonight and Sunday to workout. I won't go on Saturday. That is simply asking too much.

Well - look at that...did I just answer my own question? Looks like all I need is a bit of an attitude adjustment.

That and telling myself that "Bride Jocelyn" with greatly thank the current "Blubbery Jocelyn" for sticking to the self-made vow.

Have a great weekend everyone and take a little time to enjoy the...view?

I am so original.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Waterfront Walk

2 nights ago my sister and I decided to head downtown because I wanted to check out a few things at my wedding venue and take some photos. It was about 100 degrees outside, so after I was finished we took a walk along the Willamette River which runs right through the middle of town. I love walking along the waterfront. There are paved paths that run along both the East and West sides of the river and are pretty much always packed with people - especially on such nice evenings.

Portland is sometimes known as "Bridge City" due to the 8 bridges that connect the East and West sides. The picture above is of what we call the Steel Bridge and it is my favorite in the city. It is the only double deck bridge with independent lifts in the entire world and the second oldest vertical lift bridge in North America. While all those facts are cool, I mostly just like the way it looks against the skyline, especially when the big ships come through and they raise the entire bridge.

Yes, yes - we do love our waterfront. It is also often the place for big events, rallies and music festivals.

This is what it looked like when the then campaigning President Obama came to speak. Over 75,000 people showed up and it was one of the largest campaign crowds during the entire election season. My fiance, Dan, and I decided that day that we were too tired to get up in time and ended up going shopping instead. Idiots.

I don't care which side of the political tracks you lay, he is our first black president and that is something for the history books and missing a chance to see him speak was not one of our finest moments.

We make ourselves feel better about it by saying that we were, at that point, working 13 hour days, 6 days a week and needed our sleep. Lame, I know.

Anyway, we had a lovely time taking in this beautiful city. In fact, it was even capped off nicely when, while we were taking photos, some drunk street kids decided to scream at us for no reason and call us, and I quote, "HOOKERS!!!"

I don't think I have ever really been called that before. What was even more perplexing was the fact that I was wearing a long black dress that went to the ground. Perhaps had they shouted, "AMISH!!!" it would have been more appropriate.

I chose to ignore them. My sister, on the other hand, chose to say, "Correct me if I am mistaken, but are those ALL of your belongings in that shopping cart?"

They didn't hear her, thankfully, but you can always count on a Stott to get in the last word. Again, not one of our finest qualities.

Alright - over and out. Enjoy your day, you little lovelies.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Happiness Is A Pile of Toys On Your Back

This is Maddie, for those of you who don't know. She is my Dad and Step-Mom's dog, but I consider her my dog as well. They would probably disagree seeing as I haven't actually picked up one of her poops in ages, but who's keeping track?

The love that I posses for this dog is abundant. It's over-flowing. It's beyond words. I LOVE her. She is quite the character - to say the least. And she lets us do things like this to her.

I wonder what goes through a dog's head when humans do stupid stuff like this. I think that she likes the attention, but there has to be a part of her that is thinking, "Seriously? I give you all the love and loyalty in the world and you repay me like this???" Oh Maddie...don't be a grump. 

And PETA - please don't bother me - this is one loved little doggie

Shameless Plug: Part II

Some of you may remember this post that I did exactly 20 days ago today about my time working on the film Coraline and my little plug for the DVD release. Well folks - today is the big day!

Drum roll please...

Coraline officially came out today on DVD. Yay! It is available in three versions: the regular DVD, the 2-Disc collectors edition and the soon-to-be-released Blu-ray version which will have even better special features. I cannot believe that enough time has passed since shooting the last frame to now being out on DVD, but such is life - it moves quickly!

Thanks to everyone who has supported our film and enjoy your day :)

Monday, July 20, 2009

This Post Is Mostly For Me, Myself and I

Even though my wedding is still 8.5 months away, I feel as though my little to-do list grows by the minute. While we are in pretty good shape and our plans are slowly coming together and revealing themselves, I still feel as though there is always something to be doing with little time to spare.

Who knew this planning a wedding thing would be so similar to working in production on a film?!? Hmmm...note to self if this whole film career doesn't pan out...

This past weekend I was in Bend, OR which is a BEAUTIFUL resort town about 3.5 hours southeast of Portland. My activities in Bend looked something like this: Sleep, Shop, Eat, Drink. I kid you not - that pretty much summed it up. And it was great. Just ask my waistline.

But, as is the painful truth with most Mondays, reality been served - piping hot with a side of crap I gotta do.

In order to give some structure to my day/life/frantic mind, here are the things that I must think about/do something proactive towards today:

1) Finish collecting the last few addresses for my Save The Date cards. I have most of them, but there are always a few stragglers.

2) Call my doctor to find out why they mysteriously, out-of-nowhere sent me a bill for something they have never charged me for. If I had a dollar for every time I have had to fight it out with an insurance company, well, let me just say that my wedding attendees would all be going home with diamonds as a party favor.

3) Price out which rental company has the cheapest black wooden chairs. My Dad thinks I am insane to rent chairs. He simply cannot understand that coordinating chairs mean the world to me. Men.

4) Look for a Photoshop class that I can take. I have decided I need to brush up on my skills. I took the damn class at film school - but it seems that I have totally forgotten everything I learned. Please don't tell my student loans that.

5) GO TO THE GYM. Ugh. The hardest thing of all. I hate the gym. Have I mentioned that before? I will go. And I will sweat. And I will be very happy when it is all over.

Okay - I feel better now. My to-do list for today. I needed to get it out there - and I am so sorry for dragging you all into it. Now that I have written it out, it doesn't seem so bad. See? That is why I love lists. They take all the mumbled, jumbled mess that quickly builds itself in your head and makes it look all pretty, neat and manageable.

Now - off to get those addresses...

Sunday, July 12, 2009


Last week I got a call from my old boss/friend from my time working on the film Coraline and he informed me that one of his good friends is the road manager for the band Coldplay. He then delighted me with the news that his friend had two tickets available for their Friday night show and wanted to see if my sister and I wanted to go. To this I responded with a, "Yes please!" and a "Gimme gimme."

So, Friday after work the sib and I made our way to Ridgefield, WA, which is about 20 miles North of Portland. The traffic was horrendous, but we finally made it there about 8pm. Knowing that bands never ever start when they are supposed to, we were taking our time finding parking and getting all of our ducks in a row. That is when a little lack of communication occurred between me (who had the keys) and my sister (who decided it was time to lock the car doors) which left us with my purse and keys locked in the car.

Some words were said. I am not proud of it.

Luckily, we were driving my Dad's car and in his usual "Be Prepared" approach to life, he had a secret key in a magnetic box on the inside of the back bumper. Gotta love those who think ahead. So - crises was over, we made our way to the will call, picked up our tickets and were on our way.

As we entered the venue, we quickly realized that the comped seats from the road manager were much, much nicer than the usual tickets that our budgets would allow. In a matter of minutes, we found ourselves in the 2nd row with Chris Martin, the lead singer from Coldplay, merely feet away. It was pretty much awesome.

See the white armband? We decided it was a tribute to MJ. This was confirmed when they later did their own rendition of 'Billy Jean'.

The show itself was amazing and I can tell you that if you are a Coldplay fan, seeing them live is quite a treat. Everything about their performance was impressive. Chris Martin was all over the place and you could really feel his presence on the stage.

During their performance of the song 'Yellow' they released these huge yellow balloons into the crowd which were bounced around throughout the song.

As we were in the very front, we had them falling all around us. It was fun and made us feel important, like we were a part of the show. Chris Martin needed us there to help bounce those balloons around. I think he even mouthed that to me during the show. I swear.

In addition to the yellow balloons, I must say that I was quite impressed with the lighting and I applaud whoever produced this show. There was always something to look at and the stage changed with every song.

I especially loved the lighting in this next photo:

About 2/3 of the way through the concert, suddenly we heard this great whooshing sound from above which caused us all to look up to see thousands of colored pieces of paper floating down upon us.

As they got closer, we realized they were all little butterflies.

I loved every second of this and I can say that being in the very front is way more fun - especially when little paper butterflies are swarming you.

My sister liked it too. She is going to hate that I posted this. Sawwy.

This is what the amphitheatre floor looked like after the shower. I think I can hear the janitorial staff grumbling.

All in all, it was a great time and the show was amazing. I highly recommend seeing them if you get the chance. And I am sure that even if you don't have tickets from their road manager, it will still be just as good.

I know that I sound like a brat, but it is not often you get to say such things, so I am taking full advantage :)

Have a great Monday everyone!

Saturday, July 11, 2009

9 Months to Go...

Today is exactly 9 months until Dan and I get married and I am more excited by the minute. Even as I sit in my home in Portland, OR and he is miles and miles away in England as we await our visa, I have never been more sure of anything in my life. Love you baby!

ps - I just realized that the title of this post sounds like I am preggers. Haha - sorry Mom!

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Lollia, My Love

One of the many joys that I get from reading overpriced and usually fundamentally worthless magazines are beauty product reviews. Oh yes how I love a product review. I am always holding out a glimmer of hope that I will, at that very moment, discover a new product that I have never seen before and will totally change my life.

I actually do believe that this may be the mascara that will give me the longest lashes.

Or perhaps shampoo that will give me so much volume in my hair that it will put Amy Winehouse to shame.

Or maybe...just maybe...this cream/pill/moon chart combo will finally and totally, dare I say, remove all of the cellulite from my ass while letting me eat disgusting amounts of cheese, bread and chocolate. Could it be so? I mean, if it says it in the magazine...

So - what happens next? All you ladies out there know the answer - and it is usually not the desired outcome. I would say that 1 out of 10 times that I try a new product that I actually love it. This is quite apparent by the baskets, drawers and rows of has-been beauty products I have stuffed, shoved and lined up around my home. Rarely do I achieve the results that the magazine proclaimed, yet I am still always willing to believe that THIS might be THE ONE. What does that say about me?

Let's not go there. I know you do it too.

On a positive note, I can say that after all of this self-induced trial and error, I have developed a little arsenal of beauty products that I actually really do love and trust. They are my stand-bys that I know will always work for me. A few of my favorites:

- Pantene Pro-V shampoo and conditioner - this stuff just works and makes my hair smell lovely.

- Smith's Rosebud Salve - the best lip gloss out there. It moisturizes, smells like roses and leaves a slight pink sheen on me lips. Yes...I meant to write "me." I am channeling the English today.

- Cetaphil Moisturizing Cream - great for sensitive skin and makes your skin soooo soft.

I love these products because I just know what they are all about. I get them, and they get me - ya get it? Well, a few months ago I was visiting the Oregon Coast (love it lots) when I discovered something that I believe will now be added to my extremely select and VIP list of absolute favorites.

Lollia by designer Margot Elena. This. Stuff. Is. Amazing.

The entire line is packed full of wonderful products that are super feminine and worth the money. And the packaging...let me tell you about the packaging. It is divine. Just look at it:

I know, I know - don't judge a book by it's cover...but trust me the stuff inside is just as good. My favorite product is the Relax Shea Butter Hand Creme. It smells delicious and leaves my hands so silky smooth that I walk around just rubbing them together which makes me look like Mr. Burns from The Simpsons, but I care not.

As my love affair with Lollia began I got concerned that once it was gone, I would have to schlep back to the coast to get another bottle (apparently I forgot about the little invention called online shopping) but lucky for me they sell this stuff at Anthropologie which means no shipping fees and you can all try it out for yourselves in the store. Unless you don't have an Anthropologie near you, in which case online shopping it is! But if you do try it, I hope you love it!

Lastly - this leaves me wondering - what are some of your tried and true beauty products? Perhaps one of you knows about THE product that will _______. (fill in the blank.) See - it never stops :)

Have a good day everyone!

ps - I am in no way connected to Lollia nor has this post been sponsored by anyone at Lollia. I am just a fan.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009


Today I was tagged by Heather from Posh Play and while email-based chain letters drive me nuts-o, I thought this was kinda cute. 

Here are the rules for this tag: Tag and link back to the person who tagged you. List six little things that make you happy. Tag six bloggers and let them know they're “it".

The Happiness List:

1) My fiance Dan. He is incredible. If you continue to read this blog you will surely hear a lot about him because he is my most favorite topic. 

2) My friends. They are amazing and I love them all dearly. You know who you are!

3) Any coastline. As much as I love being in the woods or by a river, it is the beach that really calms me. There is just something about coastlines - I am so very attracted to them.

4) Musicals. Whether on the stage or on the big screen, I do love me some singing and dancing - in unison, of course. From the really old musicals to the more modern works, I love 'em all. My current favorite? Across the Universe. See it. Learn it. Love it. 

5) Simplicity. This is something that I am always wishing I had more of, but when I feel I have achieved it - even in the smallest capacity - it makes me happy. 

6) Fulfillment. This can come from many things in life and I find that there is an ebb and flow to feeling fulfilled, but when it happens, usually happiness is right there with it, boldly smacking you in the face and saying, "See, I told you that everything was going to be okay!!!"

The Tagging List:

Alright my little lovelies, you've been tagged!!!

Monday, July 6, 2009

The Cabin

"One touch of nature makes the whole world kin."  
~William Shakespeare

Here in the Northwest part of America, we don't have a lot of things. There are no palm trees nor warm oceans to swim. It can rain a lot and sometimes it feels as though winter will never end. People who have never been 'round these parts think that we all live in the woods, wear flannel and drink double tall soy lattes with extra foam. (Well...the latte part is true - but that doesn't matter...moving on.) But what some people don't realize that for everything the NW may lack, it makes up for it with things like this:

These photos were all taken this past weekend in Washington State where my Dad and Step-Mom have a cabin. Since they bought the little weekend retreat about 4 years ago, we have spent every 4th of July there. It is about an hour and a half drive North from Portland where we live and during the hot summer months, you can pretty much guarantee some member of my family is up there every weekend. 

There is the cabin itself with my 18 year old brother's oh-so-super-duper red pick-up and my cousin's Saab. (SIDE NOTE: if you have an 18 year old son, probably not the best idea in the world to give him a red pick-up. I won't go into details...but the last thing a hormonal boy needs is something that basically functions as a portable bed.) 

This is the inside of the cabin taken from the front door. There are three bedrooms total with a loft, 2 bathrooms and plenty of space to run-a-muck. I would show you more pictures of the inside, but as I was about to snap more photos, I realized that our dog, Maddie, was madly barking at some poor people walking by and I had to deal with that. Then I forgot about taking more photos and headed to the water. Oh well. 

As you leave the cabin and walk to the water, it looks like this. This is really the NW in full swing. We have trees and greenery everywhere and it is one of the things that I missed the most when I was living in LA. 

Almost there...just walk a few feet further...

...and you come upon this. It is stunning and I never, ever, EVER get tired of this view. This area is usually packed full of families and dogs with kids screaming and having a great time. There are no rules here other than have fun and don't let your dogs poop in the water. Our dog did that once. In front of a little kid wading on the shallow beach. It wasn't very nice. Now that I think about it, perhaps she was the reason for the rule. 

In this picture you can see a mountain in the background. Anybody want to guess which famous mountain this is? Bueller? Bueller? It is Mt. Saint Helens. That's right - our pristine little home away from home sits at the bottom of an active volcano. It's all good though. If she ever decides to blow again, all available science says that she will blow in the opposite direction. Let's hope they are right. 

Every 4th of July, all of the residents of this little cabin community come to the waters edge to watch the fireworks display over the lake. It is really beautiful and it is hard not to feel content watching the amazing colors dazzle in the sky with the stunning mountains in the background. The only thing missing this year was my darling Dan who, as many of you know is over in England as we patiently wait for our visa to come through so we can get married. But I won't launch into that now. I just wish he had been there. Next year my darling!  

Ah yes...the cabin. I love it. 

Some day I will be able to bring my little ones here and I hope to be visiting this place for many, many years to come. 

There are even see-saws! How rad is that? 

I hope that you all had a wonderful 4th of July and that you all have a place you can go and to just forget about all of the pressures of every day life - whether it be a park or the coast or even your own backyard. 

Have a good one!

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Intellectual Conversations with Conor

Conversation I had last night with my 18 year old brother:

Me: As I put my engagement ring about 2 centimeters from his face, "Hey Conor, have you seen my ring?" This is a game I like to play. 

Conor: "Yes, I've seen it - geez."

Me: Laughing.

Conor: "God you are going to be such a wifey wife wife wifey wife McWiferson."

Me: "What is that supposed to mean?"

Conor: "You are going to like, always be folding laundry and making popsicles with google eyes and doing crafts and making muffins."

Me: "Wow, thanks Conor...I think."

I am glad that after all my years of hard work in school, good grades, achievements in work and all of the other things I have accomplished that in my brother's mind, the second I am married, I will receive all of my pride in life from folding laundry and making popsicles with google eyes. Love ya buddy! 

Friday, July 3, 2009

Happy Birthday America

One of the things that I loved the most about having the chance to work on the film Coraline was all of the people that I got to meet. Because the film was done in the stop-motion style of animation, there were many people brought over from the UK (and other parts of the world) as they tend to produce more stop-motion films than the US. What transpired was a collaboration between people from all over the world and all walks of life. I remember one time having a conversation with about 6 people and none of us were from the same country. There was me, the American, an Englishman, a German, a guy from New Zealand, an Australian and a Canadian. Never in my life had I spent so much time with so many different kinds of people and I absolutely loved it.

Along with all of these cultures however, a friendly little competition transpired, mainly between the English and the Americans. There were endless arguments about how to pronounce words, what things are really called and who was right and who was wrong. These discussions usually ended with one of the English saying something like, "Well, what's the language called? It's called 'English' therefore we are right," to which one of the Americans would usually pipe up with something along the lines of, "Oh whatever, you're just bitter that we kicked your ass." This was a never-ending battle, but always all in good fun. 

Then - I started dating one of the Englishman. Then - we got engaged. Then - I realized that this friendly little competition was something that was here to stay. Oh Bloody hell. 

My fiance, Dan, and I seem to never get tired of making fun of each others nationalities with nothing but the most foul and common stereotypes. And boy, do we go for it, but what it has really done is made us realize how ridiculous these stereotypes are in the first place. I find myself fiercely defending anything English over here and he tries as hard as he can to debunk the American stereotypes over there. Isn't it beautiful? It's harmonization. It's acceptance. It's eye-opening and it really, truly is all in good fun. 

But it still doesn't changed the fact that as of tomorrow, 233 years ago, we still kicked their butts. (Sorry darlin', I had to go there.)

In honor of the birth of this great nation, as well as in honor of the English influence in my life, I am going to make a list of a few American vs English translations. Why? Because I want to! Also because it is my little personal way of honoring this holiday and giving a little shout out to all of my English friends, (and soon to be family) over there across the pond. American words on the left, English words on the right:

Garbage   - Rubbish
Garbage can - Bin
Line - Queue
Oh crap! - Oh Bollocks!
Car trunk  - Car boot
Chips  - Crisps
French Fries  - Chips
Diaper  -  Nappy
Band-Aid  -  Plaster
Robe  -  Dressing Gown
Cookie  -  Biscuit
Dinner  -  Tea
Lunch  -  Dinner
Tank top  -  Vest
Pants  -  Trousers
Underwear  -  Pants
Sweater  -  Jumper
Candy  -  Sweets
Vest  -  Waistcoat
Yard  -  Garden

That is just a little sampling for you. Our poor children will know two words for every item. I do love it though. I love the differences. I love learning about new cultures and other ways of life and I love that my life from now on will always be meshed with the English culture as well. It has opened my eyes but at the same time given me a new love for this country as I have been able to see things through the eyes of many others experiencing it for the first time. Life if good, isn't it? Yes sir - I do believe it is. 

Well, I am off to the lake to celebrate America's Birthday. I do hope that you are doing something fun this weekend as well. Happy 4th of July!!!

Wednesday, July 1, 2009



As many of you know, and as many of you may not know, the greater part of the last two years of my life was spent working on the film Coraline. It was, without a doubt, one of the most challenging yet rewarding experiences of my life. Practically fresh out of film school when I got the job, I was able to work my way up from being a runner to a 3rd Assistant Director in about a year and learned copious amounts about animation, film making and the film industry in general.

I also met my fiance, Dan, (who was brought over from England to work as the 2nd Assistant Director) while working on the film, so all in all I can say that Coraline forever changed the direction of my life in a pointedly unexpected yet wonderful way.

*****Quick clarification for all you non-film people out there - contrary to how the position sounds, Assistant Directors don't actually do any directing at all. For a description of what it really means, click here *****

After almost 2 years of actual filming, combined with a great many more years spent in pre-production, to all of our delights, Coraline has been a great success. It has already grossed over $111 million and is continuing to open with great acclaim in theaters around the world. Making a film is no easy task; there are countless hours spent making sure that every little thing is exactly as it should be. The process is so complicated that it actually baffles me at times that films even get made in the first place. But alas, our little film produced and shot in Hillsboro, OR has made us all proud and it makes it feel like it was all worth it.

Now, here comes the plug: Since it is July 1st today, I thought I would take the chance to let people know that Coraline comes out on DVD this month - July 21st to be exact. So - now is your chance to check it out if you missed it in the theaters or to see it again if you just didn't get enough the first time :) Either way, I hope that you enjoy and thanks for supporting our film.


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