March 20, 2015

7QT: I'm talking movies, music, and gardening

Many thanks to Kelly for hosting! And if any of you are still in need of a good planner, Kelly's is on sale this week for 15% off! Click on over and grab a copy of The Best Laid Plans.

1 - This isn't the first time Walk the Moon has provided my 7QT song. This one is so catchy and poppy and happy. The campy video reminds of the ones MTV showed in my childhood, like Aha and Peter Gabriel and I don't know who else. Who else? Who am I missing?

2 - If you are a godparent, mom, dad, grandparent, hospital employee, NICU and PICU graduate, uncle, aunt, music lover, all around nice person: LISTEN UP!

JJ Heller is a really, really wonderful musician and she's doing something awesome. This month she is giving away digital copies of her lullaby album, I Dream of You. Her hope is that NICU and PICU parents and employees with download the album and then distribute it to all the moms and dads who are watching their babies fight the good fight in the neonatal and pediatric intensive care units.

This is especially powerful to me since it was JJ's song My Savior's Love Endures that I sang over JF during his NICU stay. I've written about it before, but that song helped me love on my son, keep hope in my heart, and  pray when words failed me. One of my awesome readers even arranged for JJ and Dave to perform it when they were in my area for a concert.

The music is really beautiful and even if you're not a NICU family your kids will love it. Hey! You could even tuck the cd in their Easter baskets. When you buy it please give what you can to support JJ and her generosity, but if you are doing this for a NICU please know that this is for free for you!

3 - Speaking of Easter baskets... I've got a little giveaway going on. I was able to review the new Veggie Tales Noah's Ark movie with the bonus of getting a dvd and some toys to give to a lucky A Knotted Life reader. The movie was super cute and my kids loved it. If your family loves Veggie Tales then you should definitely give it a go and enter for a chance to win.

After a couple of viewings I asked my kids, "What's your favorite part of the movie?" to which they said, "When it rains." I thought that was really cute, but I think that's their way of saying it's their favorite song.

4 - Last year of St. Joseph's feast day Travis grilled out and we all drank beer - you know, things St. Joseph would probably enjoy doing if he were alive today. This year was cold and Travis had to work so instead I made chocolate chip cookies for the feast day. Our JP enjoyed a few, Travis - whose confirmation name is Joseph - enjoyed a few, and Ben took a bunch in to his class to celebrate. The kids and I also dropped some off for my dad.

Okay, I ate one, too.

5 - Any readers who live in Missouri? I'll be sharing JF's story this weekend at St. Joseph's Catholic Church in Pilot Grove, MO following the 4pm Vigil Mass. There will be a light supper and the whole event is donation only, but it's a fundraiser for the parish school so you can be generous.

Will any readers be there? I'd love to meet you if you come! Please come up and introduce yourself and let me know in the combox if you're planning on it!

6 - If you're looking for a movie to watch this weekend do yourself two favors:
#1 don't watch Exodus: Gods and Kings.
#2 do watch Chef.

Chef stars Jon Favreau, John Leguizamo, Scarlett Johansson, Dustin Hoffman, Sofia Vergara, Robert Downey Jr. and a few other recognizable faces and it's streaming on Netflix. There's some language and a couple of innuendos but overall I thought it did a great job of being a really sweet movie while still being fun and about real stuff.

(And that recommendation is why Netflix did not seek me out to write endorsements and reviews for them in exchange for a free subscription. ahem.)

7 - Spring is in the air so let's talk gardens.

The older I get the more I grow from just liking the idea of having a garden and pretty flowerbeds to actually enjoying the work of having a garden and pretty flowerbeds. I am itching to get outside, clear out the dead, lay down fresh mulch, and plant some annuals!

This year I'm hoping to till up some earth and plant some veggies and turn one of the flowerbeds into a sort of garden, maybe with some oregano and basil. It's on the side of the house where the garden will be and it's not really visible to anyone so it doesn't have to look gorgeous, just nice enough.

I didn't get any bulbs planted last fall and so I'm not going to have any pretty daffodils, tulips, hyacinth, crocuses, or the the like which is bumming me out, but I'm hoping my butterfly bush and hydrangea will come back this year and make up for the lack of spring flowers.

What about you? Do you have a green (or green-ish) thumb? What are your plans?


  1. i don't have a green thumb. i killed the indoor plants my husband left me in charge of - and they were supposed to be hardy plants! lol but i do wish i could plant some roses and lots of pretty plants to make my backyard look like an English fairytale garden... alas, i'd probably have to hire a preofessional gardener if i ever want it to actually exist. sigh.

  2. We have had vegetable gardens all of our married life. However since we moved to the area we live now it has become a struggle, drought insects, deer and rabbits and increasing age. This year we invested in planter boxes, raised bed gardening just to cut down on some of the physical labor. Gardening helps us economically, physically and spiritually.

  3. Bonnie! I have read your blog for a while and commented once or twice, but when I saw your QT about gardening, I had to chime in! Gardening is a favorite hobby of mine. I work in healthcare, and I started gardening at a difficult time in my career, when I grew weary of seeing so much pain, suffering, and death. I just needed to see something live and grow and thrive for a change. Since then, gardening has morphed into a time of quiet prayer for me. I can pray with an empty mind and without words, and just thank God for all of life. I have found so many metaphors for living out our Catholic faith while out digging in the dirt. Last year at this time, I was very pregnant so couldnt really get out there and work in my garden... This year, I have big plans! I wish you luck in your endeavors!!

  4. Bonnie, I was just reading somewhere the other day that it is NOT too late to plant bulbs! If it is still cool where you are, you should be able to plant a few and they'll pop up when it warms up! :)
    I loved 'Chef'. I thought it was a rather heart-warming film. We also recently stumbled upon 'The Good Lie'. Not related at all, but you might like that one too. It is about a group of "Lost Boys" from Africa who try to find a new life in America after being given asylum here. The cultural differences they highlight in the movie are rather funny.

  5. My husband has the green thumb. We usually grow cucumbers, sweet peas, green beans, corn, peppers, and tomatoes. LOTS of tomatoes. And we like to grow herbs too = basil, dill,cilantro. YUM!!!!!

  6. Downloaded the JJ Heller album! Thanks for the heads up!

    When my son Daniel was in the NICU six years ago, "God of the City" by Bluetree was the song I used to hear on my 2 hour drives home from seeing him. The song still brings back memories of rural Montana.

  7. I watched Chef last night on your recommendation. I really liked it. I'm into cooking and cooking shows and cooking documentaries, and I'm also into social media, and Latino stuff, so this movie was right up my alley. You said "some language" and I would say that was more than "some", in fact I would put a "bad language alert" on it. The language doesn't bother me because it runs so closely to my internal dialogue that has been externally silenced due to my children ALWAYS being around. Thanks for sharing the recommendation! If you like documentaries, I'd recommend Masters of Pastry. It's about baking, frequently subtitled (French speakers in pastry abound), it's fabulous.

    1. Oh sorry. When I said, "there's some language" that was my bad language alert. I don't remember it being as bad or worse than a lot of crap action movies where all they do is talk in in expletives, but it's good for me to be mindful that not everyone has my barometer. Thanks for your input, Mrs. Amen. :)

  8. Oh thanks for the movie recommendation! I always joke about starting a food truck so this might be a good one for us, lol.

  9. Oregano is like, the best thing I've ever planted - ours keeps coming back and last year I harvested a bunch and dried it and it's lasted the whole year!!! So yeah, definitely go for it :) I'd add rosemary, sage, maybe some thyme? And if you can, try out lemon basil - it makes the BEST pesto (I make it without nuts, I know you guys have allergies) and grows really fast and really well.