Friday, May 22, 2015

Tomorrowland: Movie Review

Disney's newest film, Tomorrowland, is out in theaters today, just in time for the long/holiday weekend! I caught a screening of the film earlier this week and will start by saying, it's not what you'd expect based on the previews. Wondering if this is a good or bad thing? Read on!

There's not a whole lot of literature on Tomorrowland in terms of Disney. All you really know is that it's the futuristic-land at the park with some of the best rides (i.e. Space Mountain, Buzz Lightyear), but since there aren't any characters involved, all we really knew going in was that the movie would be about a futuristic-land.

The idea for the movie's storyline came from a real world shift - looking at the beginning of Tomorrowland (when the section was created during an optimistic time in 1955 at Disneyland), to when the public shifted to a darker outlook on the future in the 70s. Which totally makes sense looking at the film in hindsight.  

Photo credit: Walt Disney Pictures
Tomorrowland (the movie) starts out with the story of young, optimistic Frank (George Clooney), and his adventure to the 1964 World Fair at Disneyland with an invention he was sure would wow the judges. Within a few minutes, we're first introduced to Tomorrowland, and see a brief snippet of his experience there.

The film then switches over to Casey (Britt Robertson), an optimistic teen with a passion for innovation, and helping the world. After getting arrested for trespassing and tampering with some equipment at NASA in attempts to prevent it from being demolished, her belongings are returned to her, along with a "T" pin that she's equally fascinated and terrified of. Each time she touches it, she's transported elsewhere, while still physically dealing with whatever was happening where she was in real life (e.g. bumping into a wall even though she couldn't see it).

Photo credit: Walt Disney Pictures
Then, some holes start getting filled, like where the pin came from and why it was given to her. Soon after, in a strange series of events, Casey finds herself at the door of Frank's house, trying to find more answers and figure out all of the crazy things that started happening since she found the pin, along with the mystery of this incredible futuristic-looking place, called Tomorrowland.

I'll leave it at that so nothing's too spoiled!

Photo credit: Walt Disney Pictures
The previews seemed pretty vague to me, and not too exciting. But after seeing the film, my thoughts on the film have made a 360 - I really liked it! I felt the overall theme was very empowering as well, pushing people to be optimistic, dreamers, and to know that they can make a difference.

Will you be seeing Tomorrowland this weekend?


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Thursday, May 21, 2015

Tasty Thursday: Meat Lasagna

Happy almost-Friday! One of my personal goals has been to get a little fancier in the kitchen, as in, eat more adult-type, legitimate meals other than a basic salad, or pasta. Things that require some effort. My latest attempt? Meat lasagna!

This recipe is pretty basic (I tweaked one I found online), and was very easy to follow! I will admit, it wasn't quite seamless for me though. My pan was a little too small so the lasagna noodles didn't fit perfectly in there. But otherwise it went well!


What You'll Need (Ingredients)
1 box of lasagna noodles
1 jar of spaghetti sauce
1 (16 oz.) package of ricotta cheese
~1 lbs. lean ground beef
2 eggs
2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese

Note: I like to throw in pictures of ingredients on here so you can grab and go if you're referring to this post at the grocery store/on the go. So if you're doing that, don't forget the eggs! I accidentally left them out of the photo.



Let's get started!

Directions

Fill a pot with water and add lasagna noodles. Heat until boiling/noodles are soft.

Place meat in skillet and heat until meat has browned. Then drain, and stir in sauce.


In a separate bowl, mix ricotta cheese, eggs, and mozzarella cheese until smooth.


Preheat oven 350 degrees.

Grease 9x13" pan. Place lasagna noodle in and layer with meat/sauce, and cheese/egg mix. Repeat until pan is full. Top with sauce and cheese.Then, cover with foil and bake for 30 minutes.


Check to make sure the cheese has melted and begun to brown. If it has, take the pan out of the oven and let cool for 5-10 minutes before serving.


Have you tried any new recipes lately?


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Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Cause of the Month: Comic Relief

Last week a new charity hit my radar and I loved everything I heard about it. Since they're also hosting a big charitable drive tomorrow (Red Nose Day USA - you've definitely heard of it if you've watched NBC lately), I thought I'd contribute to the efforts and drive awareness!

Photo credit: Comic Relief

Comic Relief is a charity based in the UK that aims to have a just world, free from poverty. Since the organization was established in the 1980s, they've made a difference in several areas, including: education, HIV, malaria, mental health, and domestic violence.

Some cool stats to show their accomplishments? Literacy for adults in Uganda has increased to 73%, The number of new HIV infections in Africa dropped 33% between 2005-2013, and thanks to a campaign they ran, 1.5 million people in England were educated about mental health problems and changed their attitudes toward discriminating those with them. For a complete list of accomplishments, click here.


So what's this Red Nose Day you keep hearing about? It's tomorrow in the U.S.! It's a day where people everywhere are encouraged to get together and do something funny for money (to donate) at school, work, and home (or wherever else they may be).

Tomorrow night on NBC, an inaugural three-hour TV special will air featuring some big named actors, comedians, and musicians, putting on a show filled with comedy sketches, parodies, and of course, music. I'm looking forward to watching! At least for part of it live - three hours is a long time to sit still!

You can keep up with the latest from Comic Relief by visiting their web site, and following along via Facebook and Twitter. Interested in donating? You can do so monetarily here, or just help spread the word!

Will you be watching the Red Nose Day special? How are you giving back this month?

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Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Stitch Fix #7 Review

It's already time for another Stitch Fix review! While it's usually my favorite piece of mail each month by far, I'm disappointed that this month it was a complete miss. As in, I kept nothing. For the first time in 7 "fixes." But since I always share my reviews on the blog (check out my previous ones here), I'm going to show the items I received anyway.


For my seventh Fix, I requested a solid colored pair of Margaret M Pants (I received a black pair a few boxes back and am obsessed), and a dress for my youngest sister's communion which took place over the weekend. Here's what I got:

Fate Elyse Striped Sheer Sleeveless Top ($48)
I wasn't sure how the sheer sleeveless top would work out, but it seemed like a possible option since the material was so lightweight, but unfortunately it didn't work out. It bunched a bit at my hips and I wasn't able to comfortably pull the shirt down at the bottom.


Andrew Marc Avis Cotton Dress ($98)
This cotton dress was one of the options sent for the communion request. This seemed way too casual for the event, and kind of reminded me of something that would be worn to a tennis match. I'm not a big fan of the color orange on me and paired with other neutral colors, I thought this was a pretty boring (and overpriced) dress to keep, regardless of the occasion.


Pink Martini Seneca Dress ($74)
This was the only item I even sort of considered keeping. It was the best option to wear to the communion, but I didn't love it and couldn't justify spending $74 on a dress that I didn't love.


Margaret M Emer Printed Cropped Straight Leg Pant ($98)
As mentioned earlier, I requested the Margaret M pants in a solid color. The note from my stylist mentioned that they didn't have the solid color in stock, and instead sent me this patterned pant. While the fit worked (just like my black pair), the pattern wasn't doing it for me. I'm not one for crazy pants, and definitely not for almost $100!


Fate Macwell Drape Front Cardigan ($38)
This cardigan was my least favorite item in my fix. It seemed more like a cover up for the beach/pool than a cardi that I'd wear anywhere nice. I was so nervous I'd rip it too! The material didn't seem very strong at all.


My next Fix is scheduled to arrive in a few weeks and I'm really hoping for some good summer clothes! But more importantly, I'm hoping that next month will be a hit after this month's being a dud. I've had success with every other Fix I've received, so it's a bummer I'm not able to apply my $20 styling credit toward a future or past purchase.

That said, I've pinned quite a few items to my Style board for my stylist to check out, so hopefully she'll get a better feel for my summer style next time around!

Did you get a Stitch Fix this month? How did yours work out?


Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links.
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