Thursday, January 10, 2019

Encourage New Gym Members

Have you seen the typical swell of new people at the gym? I know I certainly have. Our Zumba class tends to be filled to overflowing, which I know is great for my instructor and for the gym, but I sure do miss the space to dance around.

That being said, I learned after I joined my gym 3 yrs ago, that some people at gyms don't have a lot of patience for people who decide one of their goals is to get fit in the new year. I had no idea. Why would someone be annoyed? Sure there's an influx of people trying to stick to their New Year's resolution, and many of them won't. But, what if we had a different attitude towards these new people?

What if instead of giving them the stink eye, we welcomed them? What if we encouraged them to come back? Last week was the first uptick in our Zumba class. There are a lot of ladies that I've been doing it with for the past 2 yrs and we're definitely the regulars. Well, one of the gals must've noticed that one of the ladies was struggling with the moves and she moved back to stand next to her to help her. In that moment, she was my hero.

I think what she did should be our attitude all of the time, but especially at the start of the year when people are just getting started. When they are trying to make lifestyle changes to help them be healthy.

Personally, I try to be welcoming to anyone I haven't recognized before. I try to smile at them, joke around with them, and in general be friendly. I'll even introduce myself and welcome them back. Unfortunately that doesn't always work out. People don't seem to be super open to making friendly with the "locals". I mean, it took me these entire past 2 yrs to have people coming up to me and talking to me. These are ladies I've been dancing with for 2 yrs. Like NOW they know I'm sticking around. lol People I've tried to be friendly with, at least in the past, ended up not coming back. HA! Trying not to take that personal.

That being said, if you see someone new, greet them! Offer to help them if they seem to be struggling or don't know what to do. Give them a smile if you're not comfortable talking to them. Just be willing to welcome everyone who's trying to get healthy like you!

Here's to year 3 of Zumba! I'm excited and loving it.

Wednesday, January 9, 2019

New Year, New You: Lugz Men's Roamers Lo Oxford Boot Giveaway

THIS is going to be an amazing year. I already know it. So much happened the last 5 months of 2018 to set our family up for good things to come in 2019! One of the biggest changes was Fred getting a new job. Really, his dream job (mostly). He has wanted to be a pastor for years and now he's on his way to fulfilling that dream.

One of the pieces of this new job that has needed to be addressed is my husband's wardrobe. As a Director of Ministries, he needed a wardrobe update. jeans falling apart, t-shirts that say "< Sarcasm >", and well-worn sneakers really won't cut it in this position. While I picked him up some new button down shirts, the place I turned to for shoes was Lugz. I reached out to them because I know doing a review (and giveaway) of their Men's Roamer Lo Oxford Boot would be a great way to get his kicks into the game.

I gave these to him for Christmas. Actually I was pretty excited because he wasn't expecting shoes for work. The ones he's been wearing have been a beast to get on and they seem to frustrate him to no end. Not only that, I didn't think they were comfortable. I knew Fred was going to have to do a lot of walking and he'd need shoes that were ones he'd want to wear for at least 8 hours (and look good at the same time)!

These boots have a comfort wedge and slip resistant outsole. They also have a padded comfort insole that will give him the cushioning he needs when he's on his feet all day. The Lugz Men's Roamer Lo Oxford Boot is made from synthetic leather with a breathable lining. You can tell by the construction that these are meant to last!

We're not new to Lugz. All of us have at least one pair. A couple were from previous reviews, but I've also bought a couple pairs on my own. My youngest has the Men's Colony CC Oxford Sneaker which he keeps in pristine condition! I also got him the Men's Warfare Mid WR for his work he was doing in construction. Lugz doesn't offer them any more, but they were similar to the Chukka. He still gets a lot of use out of them when I have him help me with yard work.

Now that I've pumped you up for these amazing Lugz shoes, you now have the opportunity to win a pair for the man in your life!

Disclaimer: Hosts & participating event bloggers of the New Year, New You Hop are not responsible for sponsors or bloggers that do not fulfill prize obligations!

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Friday, January 4, 2019

2019 Release Schedule From Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures

Now that my boys are older and I always have a date night option with my husband, it's more enjoyable to go to the movies! This year might be the best one yet. I have an idea I'll be crying through at least a couple of them (Toy Story 4 and The Lion King). I'm excited to share what's coming in 2019!

March 8, 2019 – CAPTAIN MARVEL (Marvel Studios)

Set in the 1990s, Marvel Studios’ “Captain Marvel” is an all-new adventure from a previously unseen period in the history of the Marvel Cinematic Universe that follows the journey of Carol Danvers as she becomes one of the universe’s most powerful heroes. While a galactic war between two alien races reaches Earth, Danvers finds herself and a small cadre of allies at the center of the maelstrom. 

The film stars Brie Larson, Samuel L. Jackson, Ben Mendelsohn, Djimon Hounsou, Lee Pace, Lashana Lynch, Gemma Chan, Rune Temte, Algenis Perez Soto, Mckenna Grace, with Annette Bening, with Clark Gregg, and Jude Law.

Marvel Studios’ “Captain Marvel” is produced by Kevin Feige and directed by Anna Boden and Ryan Fleck. Louis D’Esposito, Victoria Alonso, Jonathan Schwartz, Patricia Whitcher and Stan Lee are the executive producers. The story is by Nicole Perlman and Joe Shrapnel & Anna Waterhouse, and the screenplay is by Anna Boden & Ryan Fleck and Geneva Robertson-Dworet and Jac Schaeffer.

Marvel Studios’ CAPTAIN MARVEL opens on March 8, 2019 in U.S. theaters.

March 29, 2019 – DUMBO (Walt Disney Studios)

From Disney and visionary director Tim Burton, the all-new grand live-action adventure “Dumbo” expands on the beloved classic story where differences are celebrated, family is cherished and dreams take flight. Circus owner Max Medici (Danny DeVito) enlists former star Holt Farrier (Colin Farrell) and his children Milly (Nico Parker) and Joe (Finley Hobbins) to care for a newborn elephant whose oversized ears make him a laughingstock in an already struggling circus. But when they discover that Dumbo can fly, the circus makes an incredible comeback, attracting persuasive entrepreneur V.A. Vandevere (Michael Keaton), who recruits the peculiar pachyderm for his newest, larger-than-life entertainment venture, Dreamland. Dumbo soars to new heights alongside a charming and spectacular aerial artist, Colette Marchant (Eva Green), until Holt learns that beneath its shiny veneer, Dreamland is full of dark secrets.

Directed by Tim Burton (“Alice in Wonderland,” “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory”) from a screenplay by Ehren Kruger (“Ophelia,” “Dream House”), and produced by Justin Springer (“TRON: Legacy”), Kruger, Katterli Frauenfelder (“Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children,” “Big Eyes”) and Derek Frey (“Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children,” “Frankenweenie”).

DUMBO flies into theaters on March 29, 2019.

April 17, 2019 – PENGUINS (Disneynature)

Disneynature’s all-new feature film “Penguins” is a coming-of-age story about an AdĂ©lie penguin named Steve who joins millions of fellow males in the icy Antarctic spring on a quest to build a suitable nest, find a life partner and start a family. None of it comes easily for him, especially considering he's targeted by everything from killer whales to leopard seals, who unapologetically threaten his happily ever after. From the filmmaking team behind “Bears” and “Chimpanzee,” Disneynature’s “Penguins” opens in theaters nationwide in time for Earth Day 2019.

Disneynature’s PENGUINS opens in theaters on April 17, 2019.

April 26, 2019 – AVENGERS: ENDGAME (Marvel Studios)

AVENGERS: ENDGAME releases in U.S. theaters on April 26, 2019.

May 24, 2019 – ALADDIN (Walt Disney Studios)

A thrilling and vibrant live-action adaptation of Disney’s animated classic, “Aladdin” is the exciting tale of the charming street rat Aladdin, the courageous and self-determined Princess Jasmine and Genie who may be the key to their future. Directed by Guy Ritchie (“Sherlock Holmes,” “The Man from U.N.C.L.E.”), who brings his singular flair for fast-paced, visceral action to the fictitious port city of Agrabah, “Aladdin” is written by John August (“Dark Shadows,” “Big Fish”) and Ritchie based on Disney’s “Aladdin.” The film stars Will Smith (“Ali,” “Men in Black”) as the larger-than-life Genie; Mena Massoud (“Tom Clancy’s Jack Ryan”) as the charming scoundrel Aladdin; Naomi Scott (“Power Rangers”) as Jasmine, the beautiful self-determined princess; Marwan Kenzari (“Murder on the Orient Express”) as Jafar, the powerful sorcerer; Navid Negahban (“Legion”) as the Sultan concerned with his daughter’s future; Nasim Pedrad (“Saturday Night Live”) as Dalia, Princess Jasmine’s free-spirited best friend and confidante; Billy Magnussen (“Into the Woods”) as the handsome and arrogant suitor Prince Anders; and Numan Acar (“The Great Wall”) as Hakim, Jafar’s right-hand man and captain of the palace guards.

“Aladdin” is produced by Dan Lin (“Sherlock Holmes”) and Jonathan Eirich (“Death Nate”) with Oscar nominee and Golden Globe winner Marc Platt (“La La Land”) and Kevin De La Noy (“The Dark Knight Rises”) serving as executive producers. Eight-time Academy Award winning composer Alan Menken (“Beauty and the Beast,” “The Little Mermaid”) provides the score, which includes new recordings of the original songs written by Menken and Oscar-winning lyricists Howard Ashman (“Little Shop of Horrors”) and Tim Rice (“The Lion King”) and includes two new songs written by Menken and Oscar and Tony Award-winning songwriters Benj Pasek and Justin Paul (“La La Land,” “Dear Evan Hanson”). The film, which was shot on practical stages in London and on location amidst the stunning desert vistas of Jordan, has a talented creative team helping to bring Agrabah to life, including: director of photography Alan Stewart (“The Commuter”), production designer Gemma Jackson (“Game of Thrones”) and costume designer Michael Wilkinson (“American Hustle”).

ALADDIN opens in U.S. theaters nationwide May 24, 2019.

June 21, 2019 – TOY STORY 4 (Disney·Pixar)

Woody has always been confident about his place in the world and that his priority is taking care of his kid, whether that’s Andy or Bonnie. But when Bonnie adds a reluctant new toy called “Forky” to her room, a road trip adventure alongside old and new friends will show Woody how big the world can be for a toy. Directed by Josh Cooley (“Riley’s First Date?”) and produced by Jonas Rivera (“Inside Out,” “Up”) and Mark Nielsen (associate producer “Inside Out”).

Disney·Pixar’s TOY STORY 4 ventures to U.S. theaters on June 21, 2019.

July 19, 2019 – THE LION KING (Walt Disney Studios)

Director Jon Favreau’s all-new “The Lion King” journey’s to the African savannah where a future king is born. Simba idolizes his father, King Mufasa, and takes to heart his own royal destiny. But not everyone in the kingdom celebrates the new cub’s arrival. Scar, Mufasa’s brother–and former heir to the throne-has plans of his own. The battle for Pride Rock is ravaged with betrayal, tragedy and drama, ultimately resulting in Simba’s exile. With help from a curious pair of newfound friends, Simba will have to figure out how to grow up and take back what is rightfully his. The all-star cast includes Donald Glover as Simba, BeyoncĂ© Knowles-Carter as Nala, James Earl Jones as Mufasa, Chiwetel Ejiofor as Scar, Seth Rogen as Pumbaa and Billy Eichner as Timon, “The Lion King” utilizes pioneer filmmaking techniques to bring these treasured characters to life in a whole new way.    

THE LION KING roars into theaters on July 19, 2019.

August 9, 2019 – ARTEMIS FOWL (Walt Disney Studios)

Disney’s “Artemis Fowl,” based on the beloved book by Eoin Colfer, is a fantastical, spellbinding adventure that follows the journey of 12-year-old genius Artemis Fowl, a descendant of a long line of criminal masterminds, as he seeks to find his father who has mysteriously disappeared. With the help of his loyal protector Butler, Artemis sets out to find him, and in doing so uncovers an ancient, underground civilization—the amazingly advanced world of fairies. Deducing that his father’s disappearance is somehow connected to the secretive, reclusive fairy world, cunning Artemis concocts a dangerous plan—so dangerous that he ultimately finds himself in a perilous war of wits with the all-powerful fairies.

“Artemis Fowl” is directed by Kenneth Branagh and stars Ferdia Shaw, Lara McDonnell, Tamara Smart, Nonzo Anozie, with Josh Gad, and Judi Dench. Judy Hofflund and Branagh are producing with Angus More Gordon and Matthew Jenkins serving as executive producers. Conor McPherson wrote the screenplay.

Disney’s ARTEMIS FOWL opens in U.S. theaters on August 9, 2019.

November 22, 2019 – FROZEN 2 (Walt Disney Animation Studios)

Arendelle heats up in 2019 when Anna, Elsa, Kristoff and Olaf return to the big screen in Walt Disney Animation Studios’ “Frozen 2,” the much-anticipated follow-up to 2013’s Oscar®-winning “Frozen”—the highest grossing animated film of all time. Kristen Bell, Idina Menzel, Jonathan Groff and Josh Gad reprise their roles, while Chris Buck and Jennifer Lee, the team behind “Frozen,” return to the directors’ chairs.

FROZEN 2 opens in U.S. theaters on Nov. 22, 2019.

December 20, 2019 – STAR WARS: EPISODE IX (Lucasfilm)

STAR WARS: EPISODE IX opens in U.S. theaters on December 20, 2019.

Monday, December 31, 2018

The Wonder Of Mary Poppins Returns

Last night my hubby and I had date night. We went to see Mary Poppins Returns. I was hoping it would be a good movie. I mean, a new Mary Poppins? Do we really need a new one? And you know how people screw up "sequels". I had my hopes up that it would at least be enjoyable. Just be aware that what follows may be considered a complete spoiler, but I'm ok with that. This is your fair warning.

Cue the start of the film, and I KNEW something magical was about to happen. There may be a lot of "remember when" statements coming in this review starting with, remember when movies began with the credits? They lasted a couple minutes with a musical piece? It took me about 30 seconds to realize that the movie hadn't started, the music was still playing, and we were still watching credits. That put a smile on my face and I wondered how many people remember movies beginning this way. Then I also wondered how many people were impatient for the movie to start. I just thought, "I already love this."

I read on Facebook that someone was saying to not forget this movie was a musical. Of course I wasn't sure if that meant the entire thing was full on musical scene after scene or even if the score would be any good. Would the songs be on par with the original music and dances. I mean, the bar (in my opinion) was set extremely high for this movie to reach.

Let's just say that Mary Poppins Returns is a musical just like the original. It made me think of those classic childhood movies like Chitty Chitty Bang Bang and Bedknobs and Broomsticks. Robert & Richard Sherman composed music that made those movies absolutely delightful. Marc Shaiman and Scott Wittman did a spectacular job at staying true to the original movie with new songs that I believe the Sherman brothers would've approved of! I think the only part in the movie that I thought was a bit "hokey" was the BMX bikes in the "Trip A Little Light Fantastic" scene. It's probably my age, but it just didn't seem to fit the rest of the movie.

I'm not sure at what point in the movie I realized I felt like a child again. Mary Poppins Returns made me feel like a 6 year old little girl who watched the movie with wide-eyed wonderment. The humans were able to interact with cartoons. I thought it would be incredible to experience that kind of interaction. I literally got lost in the movie. I remembered what it felt like to watch a move that seemed magical. I want Mary Poppins to be MY nanny although I've never had a nanny and I'm almost 50. hahahaha

Do you approach movies that are "family" oriented or for children and wonder how they're going to add adult themes? I mean, why can't children's movies just be sweet and innocent? No inappropriate talk by the characters, no implied meanings, no innuendos. Simply a straight forward children's movie. You get all the fun & sweetness of a children's movie that you would hope for with Mary Poppins Returns.

Emily Blunt, I can't say enough about her performance! As soon as you see her feet turned out, you know she's going to be great! I'm not one to join the hype of an actor or actress' performance, but hers was spectacular. I feel as though Dame Julie Andrews would be very proud of this revival of the character she brought to life. BTW, did you know the original Mary Poppins was Julie Andrews' feature film debut? Back to Emily Blunt though. She is probably one of my favorite actresses. I don't think I realized it until this movie. She's such a versatile actress. I can't imagine anyone else playing this role!

Lin-Manuel Miranda did a good job as Jack, the lamp lighter. Can I admit I've never seen him in anything before? No, I haven't seen Hamilton. I also don't keep up on awards shows to know that he's won nearly all 4! Lin-Manuel certainly showed me he can sing, dance, and act all in one fell swoop.

No way I could leave out seeing Dick Van Dyke and Angela Lansbury in this movie. What icons! My heart swelled when I saw them and heard them sing. Dick Van Dyke certainly hasn't lost his gift of singing, dancing, and acting. I had no idea Angela Lansbury was in the movie, so to see her at the end was delightful! I also had no clue Meryl Streep was in the movie. I must live under a rock.

I can't leave out the actors who played Michael & Jane as well as the kids, Anabel, John, and Georgie. I remember Jane (Emily Mortimer) from something, but for the life of me I can't remember what. I looked through IMDB and didn't find anything that I'd know her from. Maybe she just has one of those faces. The kids were fantastic and I really enjoyed them as Michael's children. I think when they look back 20 yrs from now, they'll realize what an amazing opportunity it was to have roles in this movie.


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Monday, December 24, 2018

My New Devi Water Bottle From KOR

I know everyone is focused on Christmas, but somehow life has been so busy in general that I haven't done most of the things I have in years past. What I AM looking forward to is starting the new year. I'm hoping to make better choices with my health. That's where my new KOR Devi water bottle comes in to play. I have a few water bottles from KOR and I was excited to review this one!

One of the biggest things I struggle with is drinking water. The guys in my house, they drink it like it's going out of style. I can only drink it if I'm working out or if the water is incredibly cold. I don't know why, but it's one of the biggest hurdles I have with living a healthier lifestyle daily.

As you've probably seen if you follow me on Instagram or you've read my blog, I love my Zumba. I drink water like it's going out of style while I'm at my class. My Devi has been amazing during my class especially during this crazy time of year. I've been filling my KOR water bottle up with cold water when I leave the house early, do tons of running around, and then head to class.

Remember how I said I like my water super cold? When I finally get to class the water is still cold thankfully! At my class, I also need a bottle that's going to be one that's safe to have in class. We just randomly place our stuff around the room which can easily be knocked over. The Devi comes with a lock to help prevent leaks and spills. Yes, I've spilled between dances and that is such a hassle when you don't want to stop your exercise, but have to so that you can clean up the mess.

The KOR Devi is a bottle that also keeps liquids hot between 6 to 12 hours. That's done with the KORtemp Technology that helps keep water cold for up to 24 hours, too! It's double insulated and vacuum sealed. That way if you have hot beverages you don't burn your hand and if you have cold beverage on a hot day, it won't sweat!

One of my favorite features on every KOR water bottle is the Perfect Spout. The one on the Devi is probably my favorite of all the ones I have. It's a separate piece from the stainless steel bottle and also disconnects from the lid. It's smooth and threadless so it's gentle on your lips. No hard edges with this spout.

And can we just talk about the color? The pearl pink is absolutely gorgeous! I love the ombre. I'm not typically a pink person, but the bottle's color just grabbed me. It also comes in onyx, arctic ice, and Caribbean green.

Make a commitment to being your best you in 2019. Start off with hydration. Fingers crossed I can do it! That and get back on my treadmill. Another place where I'm not succeeding since we got back from Peru. Let's make 2019 a hydrated healthy one!

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Woven by Words by Mimi B is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License.