The Bachelor Arie: Episode 3

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Chris H. saunters in and tells the girls that this week there are two group dates and one romantic one-on-one.

Group Date 1: Maquel, J-Quellin, Lauren B, Tia, Marikh, Bekah M, Bibiana & Krystal

“It’s all about the Ring”

Monica on friends was already fooled by ring talk once before, although I sincerely hope the girls will be competing for the ultimate fighting champion.

Two old ladies from an 80’s wrestling show come to teach the girls how to act, fall and be tough.  The old ladies tried to toughen up Tia and Bibiana and they ended up crying in the corner together.  They all dress up in ridiculous and mostly scandalous costume and parade around the ring smashing and falling down.  Somehow Tia is supposedly the winner.  I don’t get it.

In the evening they go to some cute little RV park of airstreams.  Krystal “steals” him first and as predicted the girls are mad.  Bibiana is going to take it upon herself to go taddle to Arie.  Krystal Krystals it up in there talking with the girls.  Bekah M. rolls her eyes.

Bekah M tells Arie her longest relationship was 2 1/2 to 3 years, which was in Junior High I presume.

Arie gives the rose to Bekah M.  Krystal says she’s not just going to sit by and watch other girls form relationships, even though that is exactly the premise of the show.

One-on-One Date- Lauren S.

“You had me at merlot.”

Lauren S. says she thinks it’s about wine.

Image result for gif jim from office

They fly to a winery to drink wine and chat.  Lauren tells Arie it was so quiet she could hear a penny drop.  Wait, what?  I think she means pin.  They wander through the winery and chat about going to bed early and wearing cardigans.  At ‘dinner’ she talks about how her career really took off (btw, she is a social media manager which means she has an Instagram?).  Arie is so bored with her talking about random eye infections that he actually cuts the for-show-only food and eats it.

She stops babbling long enough for Arie to pick up the rose to quickly send her away.

Cut to the girls sitting around makeup-less to see the guy take away her suitcase.  Caroline bursts into tears and then Krystal takes the opportunity to give a speech about how well she knows Arie and tried to encourage Lauren S to open up and obviously she didn’t take her advice, because she knows Arie so well.

Caroline wishes she would stop being so condescending to everyone because she met his dog.

Group date 2- Ashley, Becca K Brittany Jenna Caroline Chelsea Annaliese

“Love is ruff.”

Guess what? Annaliese had a dog trauma.  Her grandparents’ dog named sunshine bit her and she almost lost her eye.  Annaliese was almost a pirate.

None of the dogs seem to obey any of the commands.  Annaliese scoops poop that is blocked out with a black modesty box.

In the evening, Arie pulls Chelsea away first.  It was hard for her to be in a playground and around kids.  She channels her inner Kanye and said, “I actually adore the person that I have become.”

Image result for meme i love me

Annaliese tries to be aggressive and it doesn’t go well.  Arie welcomes the interruption of Chelsea to makeout with him.  He rewards her with the date rose.

Cocktail Party

Let the drama begin.  Arie grabs Sienne first.  Bibiana decides to make a special scene.  She puts together a couch and cabana area with a telescope and binoculars for star gazing (not spying on the neighbors I guess).  Arie takes Lauren out and finds a cute setup (Bibiana’s) and puts her on the daybed to makeout.  Bibiana walks out to see him using her setup with Lauren.  Not only that, he asks her for five more minutes.  Yikes.

Then Arie takes every other girl to that same spot.  Except Tia.  He (a producer) makes a cute little country setup for her.  He gets hay bails and moonshine for her.  *Adorable*.  Arie says moonshine tastes ‘like gasoline, but in a good way.’

Annaliese takes Arie to the roof or a balcony and he says she seems stressed.  She says it’s because she really wants him to kiss her.  He tells her that he just doesn’t think they are there yet.  OUCH.  That is your cue to leave Annaliese.  She cries, but Marikh tells her to go ask him one more time just to get clarity.  HORRIBLE advice.  She goes again to ask just to be sure.  He says no and walks her out.  Obviously.

The flavor of the room is tension as the girls line up for the rose ceremony.

Chelsie and Bekah already have roses from the two group dates.

Roses go to:

  • Caroline
  • Kendall
  • Ashley
  • Lauren
  • Brittany
  • Becca K.
  • Seinne
  • Krystal
  • Tia
  • Maquel
  • Jenna
  • J-quellin
  • Marikh

This sends Bibiana home.  She never even got to use the setup she made.  She falls apart, but eventually tells the camera that she can’t force something that isn’t there.  She’s gonna be ok.  Good news though, she’ll be at the Bachelor Winter Games in February.

Best Twitter Reactions

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That’s all folks!  Tune in next week for more sloppy kisses and more drama.

The Bachelor Arie: Episode Two

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We open to a scene of Arie putting on a helmet and getting on a motorcycle.  He’s speeding over to the mansion to pick up the future Mrs. Luyendyk.

One-on-One- Becca K

“Hold on tight.” Arie

She walks out to the motorcycle and he gives her a leather jacket and puts her helmet on for her while the other girls watch half scowling.

He takes her to meet with Rachel Zoe, a famous designer (I know this because they wrote it on the screen).  She gets to try on a bunch of dresses to pick one for tonight’s date.  He walks outside and gets down on one knee and gives her Louboutins.  Obviously we were concerned if the shoes would match the dress.  You gotta give her the shoes first, Arie.  Of course Neil Lane sends his best, with the briefcase of diamonds that shows up for her to wear.

If she had a cell phone, she would be texting the other girls at the house right now.  Not to worry, she takes the gowns, shoes, and diamonds back to the house to get ready.  Bibiana cries when she sees the shoes because she’s never seen them in real life.  Later outside, she is still crying about the beauty of the shoes and I love her a little bit more.

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She arrives looking gorgeous and he looks a’ight.  Their ‘dinner’ conversation is kind of like grown up conversation, which is always surprising on this show. Also, I love that she tells him that she heard he can fix her brakes on her car.  She has a personality.  I like her.

He gives her the rose.  Then tells her she gets to keep the diamond earrings.  Then one more surprise.  She pulls a cord that says “pull”.  Bam, gold confetti falls as they kiss.

One-on-One- Krystal

“Home is where the heart is.” Arie.

Krystal pulls up in a limo.  She gets a red carpet leading to an airplane.  They fly to Scottsdale.  He takes her to his house and gives her a tour.  They watch home videos then jump in his car and go to his parent’s house.  They have a bit of money, by the way.  Krystal is a bit worried because she is not at all close to her family and what will Arie think?  My guess is something along the lines of ‘I don’t have to meet in-lawns? The horror.’

In the evening they go to some big huge building for dinner.  She tells him about her childhood not being great.  She cared for her younger brother mostly.  She shares that her brother is living on the streets and how very difficult it is for her.  She cries.  Then he sends her away.  Just kidding.  He gives her the rose, of course.

They go into a big hall/theater and Connor Duermet is singing.  They slow dance.  Arie says that Connor Duermet is unbelievable, while pretending that he has heard of him before.

Group Date- Maquel, Marikh, Tia, Valerie, Annaleise, Lauren G, Kendall, Bekah, Jenny, Jenna, Seinne, Jenna, Caroline, Brittany, Bibiana & Chelsea

“Let’s hit love head on.” Arie

15 girls. The girls are NOT thrilled.  They were hoping for a bit more intimate of a group date.  They take a party bus and I am beyond impressed that they found a party bus without a stripper pole.  The outfit of the day is spandex shorts or yoga pants and a tank top, halter, or belly shirt of some sort.

They get spray paint and get to decorate their cars.  Tia says surely someone will cry today.  Annaleise steps up to the plate.  Turns out she had a traumatic bumper car incident.  Cut to Jenny (who I picked based on bios and pics alone to win the final rose) laughing about bumper car trauma.  She says they can’t start until she gets done crying.

Welcome to the BASHELOR demolition derby.  Wait, Annaleise is still crying.  She’s telling the cameras that she feels better in the suit because it is like a protective blanket, but oh wait, they are bringing in fire extinguishers which makes her start crying again.

They start up the engines.  After some brutal bashing it comes down to Tia and Seinne.  Tia (from Arkansas) claims she has never done this before.  We don’t believe her.  Seinne ends up the winner.

They sit by the fire in the evening and pour champagne.  The champagne barely hits the glass and Chelsie is up and stealing away Arie.  She has to confess about another man in her life, her three year old son, Sammy.  She tells the girls that’s why she had to go first, to come clean about her momness.  The other girls call her out.  Their life is important too.

Arie tells Bekah (short hair) that he loves her energy.  I point out that she is 22 and therefore still has energy.  She responds with, “wanna make out?” or something along those lines.

Meanwhile, Bibiana has a tantrum because she didn’t get to talk to him.  She proclaims she is done and marches off yelling at the camera that they better not follow her, which they do obviously.

Arie gathers the girls and grabs the date rose.  He tells Chelsie she opened up to him and he’s thankful for that, then he turns his attention to Seinne and says they had a good conversation too, so he gives her the rose.  Chelsie is NOT pumped.

chelsie

Cocktail Party

The glitter is on the and gloves are off.

Arie and Lauren B. are out talking and Krystal comes out to interrupt.  Arie tells her to give him a moment, which rarely happens.  1. Krystal has a rose and got a ONE on ONE.  2. Lauren B didn’t even get to go on a date at all.

Bibiana sits down to talk to Arie, for like the first time all season and dun-dun-dun Krystal opens the door.  Do you mind?  Yes, I really do.  She is the first person to ever say no when someone asks for time.  It’s about dang time.  Krystal goes back inside and Arie asks Bibiana if it’s getting tough in there.  He knows.  He knows Krystal is a problem.  Correct your ways, Arie.

Bibiana and Krystal have words.  Bibiana’s are all yelly and threatening and Krystal’s are all baby talk and airy, but with a smoker’s voice.

Roses go to:

Maquel – the 23 yr old “photographer”

J-Quellin – pretty dark curly hair

Bekah M – short hair kiddo

Jenna – spastic blonde

Chelsie – was the villain before Krystal started upping her game

Lauren S. – a blonde lauren

Tia – Raven’s friend from Arkansas

Annaleise – wore the mask night one.  Bumper car PTSD.

Lauren B. – Hmmm don’t recall

Kendall – Taxidermy girl

Brittany – first kiss ever. was injured in the demolition derby.

Ashley – Didn’t go on a date this week.

Marikh – Restaurant owner

Caroline – Realtor who is ‘really good at her job’

Bibiana – Put Krystal in her place

This sends Jenny (who was patient enough to wait for bumper car PTSD girl to stop crying), pineapple girl (Britane G.), and the only redhead (Valerie) home.  Well shoot.  I guess I am not good at picking based only on bios and pictures alone.

I decided to add a new section, for y’all.

Twitter Favorites

Raven’s good eye.

Bashelor

Evan points out that we are two for two on rose ceremonies ending the show.

evan

After Jenny left, she told Arie she wasn’t sad about him, she was sad about leaving her new friends.  Then she told the camera that she has never been dumped in her life.

jenny

See y’all next week!

The Bachelor Arie- Week 1

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arie

The things I do for you people.  I spent precious moments of my life reading the ‘biographies’ of these women.  I’ll never get that time back, but I go to these lengths for the entertainment of you folks.  You’re welcome.

Chris Harrison starts by introducing him as the best kisser in bachelor history.  Anyone else wonder how Chris knows? In case you haven’t kept up, Arie is still racing cars, but he is also a realtor now too.  I mention this only because half of the girls are realtors and maybe this is why.  He must be looking for both a wife and a business partner.

How are they still letting people on the show who have obviously NOT SEEN the show.  “I just didn’t realize there would be so much competition on night one.”  Really?  How? HOW did you not realize this?

Prepare for a season with four Lauren’s.  Also, there is only one Ashley.  How old are we getting that the new young kids aren’t Ashleys anymore?

Let’s spray down the driveway and roll in the limos to meet these ladies and kiddos.

Caroline- Realtor

In her little pre-show intro she says that she has been a realtor for less than a year and she has over 5 million in sales so she is “like, really good at her job.”  She said those words.  I was not impressed.  Especially since originally I put her in my top 4 of my fantasy league.  Shoot.  Who knows if she’ll still be there by the time final picks have to be locked in.

She gets out of the limo and makes a cheesy realtor joke about both of them being off the market at the end.  She wore a white sparkly dress showcasing her cleavage and later brought him a pizza to eat by the fire.  The pizza won me over.  I would give her a rose.

BIO TIDBIT: If you could have lunch with three people, who would you choose? Vince Vaughn, Betty White, and Ryan Reynolds. It would be a blast of a lunch and we’d pretend it was Betty’s birthday at a Hibachi restaurant!  (This is obviously why I put her in my top four.)

Status: ROSE

Chelsea- Real Estate Executive Assistant

She gets out of the limo and says this masterpiece, “There’s a lot to um. to get to know.”  Arie thinks she is mysterious.  I found her boring.  It’s clear that she will definitely be a villain this season.  She ‘steals’ him first after his toast and goes back again a scandalous second time later in the evening/morning.  I smell trouble.

BIO TIDBIT: I hate it when my date… displays over-the-top PDA. Let me breathe! (I’m throwing my B.S. flag here because I saw her tongue go into his mouth several times. Ew.)

Status: First Impression Rose

Kendall- Creative Director (??)

She jumped out of the limo in a powder pink gown with bright red lips.  She is a collector of taxidermy, which is creepy but also stupid expensive.  BTW, I collect diamonds.  She also plays the ukulele and played a cute little song to Arie later in the night.

BIO TIDBIT: What does your ideal mate look like? Tall, easy smile, can survive a zombie apocalypse-type body. (I married a guy with that body type.)

Status: Rose

Seinne- Commercial Real Estate Manager

She gave Arie a gift of elephant cufflinks, because elephants are good luck, and also because elephants never forget so he shouldn’t forget to come find her inside later to talk.  Aww.

BIO TIDBIT:   What’s your favorite holiday? New Year’s Eve – new beginnings and lots of champagne. (She’s going to do juuuust fine in the mansion.)

Status: Rose

Tia- Physical therapist

She is friends with Raven, who encouraged her to go on the show.  She is from Weiner, AR. She got out of the limo with a tiny Oscar meyer weiner and gave it to him saying, “I hope you don’t already have a tiny weiner.”  He simply said, “I don’t already have this.”  He wasn’t about playing into her joke.

BIO TIDBIT:  What is the best trip you have ever been on and why? Cancun to a random swingers resort. HA! It was actually fun.

Status: Rose

Bibiana- Executive Assistant

I think she will be entertaining.  She met him and instantly told the cameras she realized their babies would have blue eyes.

BIO TIDBIT: Would you consider yourself a lover of art? Yes. Wish I could be art. (what?)

Status: Rose

Bri- Sports Reporter

She exits the limo and throws a softball to Arie.  She used to play softball and now she is a sports reporter.

BIO TIDBIT: What is your greatest achievement to date? Putting myself together after heartache and winning an Emmy! (Like, a real Emmy?)

Status: No Rose

Britane J

I would assume this name is pronounced Bri-tane, rhyming with butane, but apparently it is pronounced Britany.  She puts a ‘nice butt’ bumper sticker on Arie’s behind.

BIO TIDBIT: Lunch with three people alive or dead? Whitney Houston, Bernie Sanders and Beyoncé. (One person I don’t want to have lunch with… Britane J.)

Status: No Rose

Jaqueline- Research Coordinator

She works for a psychiatry research lab.  Interestingly enough, later in the evening when talking to Arie she says the word “therapizing.”  I checked and apparently it is a word.

I’m not mature enough to pronounce her name correctly.  It’s the late-night dispatcher in me who gave many a return over the radio as J-Quellin.

BIO TIDBIT: If you won the lottery, what would you do with your winnings? Buy a penthouse in Soho, build a wild animal conservation in Africa/India, have a pet cheetah. (But, would she name her pet cheetah Chester?)

Status: Rose

Krystal- fitness coach

In her little intro we learn that she is a fitness coach and cares deeply about people.  Not only that, but her brother has been homeless for three years and she really wants to help him, but he is not ready for help.  It breaks her heart so she makes snack bags and lunches for homeless people in the area.  Well, that’s actually kinda cool.  She seems sweet.  I’m not sure if she smokes a lot, is getting over a cold, or works for a 900 phone line (if those still exist).  Arie says her voice is soothing.

He says “I wanna know more about you. We don’t have much time.”  She replies. “I’m a libra.”  Perfect.  Excellent way to use your 7 seconds.

BIO TIDBIT: Are you a country or a city person? Can you ever take the country out of the girl?

Status: Rose

Nysha- Orthopedic Nurse

She seems sweet, smart, and gorgeous.  Obviously he gets rid of her immediately.

BIO TIDBIT: If you could be a fictional character, who would you be and why? Mulan. She pretended to be a man and went to war. How badass is that? Or Willy Wonka. The man had his own chocolate factory!

Status: No Rose

Valerie- Server

She arrives wearing a bright yellow dress, hot pink lips, and I believe she is the only redhead in the bunch.

Do you have any fears? Don’t make me swim in the deep ocean. There is so much that we don’t know about the deep sea… I don’t want to get eaten. (FOOL.  Does she not know these producers? If she makes it far enough, she’ll be on the deep sea diving date. If I went on this I would say my fears are pizza and puppies.  Then I could ‘overcome’ my fears. I’m no fool.)

Status: Rose

Bekah M- Nanny

This kid is the youngest on the show, 22. She is also gorgeous and pretty funny with her facial expressions and her impressions of the other girls.  I selfishly hope she goes far so she can give us good commentary.  She pulled up driving a 65 red mustang.  I have two questions… can she drive a manual?  Does she have her license, or at least her learner’s permit?

She walks up to him and says, “I may be young, but I can still appreciate something classic.”

Later in the evening they sit on the back of the car and chat.  He says he is nervous too wondering if the person sitting next to him likes him.  She said, “so far I do”.  I thought that was quite the answer.  Usually it’s something along the lines of, “marry me immediately; I’m in love with you already because I saw you on tv.” She asks him what are three things that make him excited to be alive.  He replied with, “excitement.”  She giggles and makes fun of him for saying excitement makes him excited to be alive.

I know she’s a young whippersnapper, but I like her.

BIO TIDBIT: What’s your guilty pleasure? Binge-watching reality TV and eating bags of popcorn in place of meals.

Status: Rose

Jenna- Social Media Manager (Me too.)

She was a bit all over the place when talking to Arie.  Changed topics quick and talked with her hands a bunch.  All of a sudden she was massaging his feet.

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BIO TIDBIT: What is the most outrageous thing you have ever done? Breaking my wrist on a mechanical bull was pretty memorable.

Status: Rose

Jessica- Television Host

She brought a gratitude rock for him.  Apparently her dad met Arie a long time ago and she and her dad rooted for him on Emily’s season.  Now, her dad is dead and she knows he would approve of Arie and would have met her husband.

BIO TIDBIT: Do you have any family holiday or special event traditions that you plan to uphold? Every year my family and I build homes for homeless families in Mexico. We have built 20 homes and I plan to continue every year! (Way to make me feel bad about myself.)

Status: No Rose

Marikh- Restaurant Owner

She comes out of the limo and says “I use lots of different spices, but I need a little salt and pepper in my life.” Since she owns an Indian restaurant, yes, she does need more salt and pepper and less curry.

In her little intro video she says she isn’t used to pursuing a guy as she is typically the one pursued.  She also is shown boxing and in full makeup, as we all do.

BIO TIDBIT: Who is your favorite actor, and why? Meryl Streep. Because Meryl Streep.

Status: Rose

Olivia- Marketing Associate

I have zero notes about her.

BIO TIDBIT: What’s your favorite book of all time? 50 Shades of Grey (Of ALL time? Or you’ve only read one book? Or, just saw the movie?)

Status: No Rose

Becca K- Publicist

She has Arie get down on one knee and repeat after her, “Rebecca Jill, are you ready to do the damn thing?” She hopes he will start the show proposing to her and finish it proposing to her.

BIO TIDBIT:  What are your top three all-time favorite movies? Sister Act 2, Gladiator, Pitch Perfect (Sister Act 2??? Who would say Sister Act 2 is better than Sister Act?  And what human likes both Gladiator and Pitch Perfect.  She’s a mystery.)

Status: Rose

Lauren S- Social Media Something (again, like all of us)

Arie loves her energy.  I think what he means by energy is the giant hole in the front of her dress.

BIO TIDBIT: What is your highest athletic achievement? Participation trophies.

Status: Rose

Lauren J- Recent Graduate (unemployed)

I have no notes for this Lauren.

BIO TIDBIT: What are five things you can’t live without? Mama, my nephews, porch swings, mascara and love.

Status: No Rose

Lauren B- Tech Salesperson

Another Lauren? I got nothing.

BIO TIDBIT: What is the most embarrassing thing you listen to? T-Swift (so basic).

Status: No Rose

Lauren G- Executive Recruiter

My favorite Lauren.

I remember nothing about her limo exit, but later in the night she had him close his eyes and put a fruit in his mouth.  She asked him what it was and he said, “that’s a pineapple.” She said, “good. that’s my safeword.”  And I fell over laughing.  Two points for Lauren G.

BIO TIDBIT: What’s one of the top things on your bucket list? Visiting the pyramids in Egypt.

Status: Rose

Ashley- Real Estate Agent

She brought a checkered flag and said something about making it to the finish line.

BIO TIDBIT: All-time favorite movies: No Country for Old Men, The Family Stone, and Superbad.

Status: Rose

Brittany T- Tech Recruiter

She came out of the limo in a black dress and told him that he’s handsome in Dutch.  Later she had a mini car race with him and also got the first kiss from him.

BIO TIDBIT: Where do you meet guys? I don’t… jk. The past two I’ve met have been through dating apps and they’re terrible human beings.

Status: Rose

Amber- Business Owner

She owns a spray tan company, which is evident.  Her opening line is, “In my line of work I see a lot of bleep.  So let’s just hope you aren’t another bleep.”

Image result for bold strategy cotton gif

BIO TIDBIT: What is the most outrageous thing you have ever done? Hold a HUGE python in Thailand. I hate snakes so this was crazy for me. I wanted to feel like Britney Spears at the VMAs, I did not.

Status: No Rose. And a lot of tears.

Jenny- Graphic Artist

Gave him a drawing she did of him.  We were seriously hoping that she would turn around the frame and it would be a stick figure, but it was actually a pretty good drawing.

Fun fact, based on pics and bios alone, I put her as winning the final rose.  I have a couple weeks before those answers have to be locked in so we shall see if she stays in that position.

BIO TIDBIT: What are your top three all-time favorite movies? Crazy, Stupid, Love, 21 Jump Street, Stand by Me

Status: Rose

Ali- Personal Stylist

Her brilliant opening line was “smell my pits.  Was that the best pit stop of your life?”

BIO TIDBIT:  If you could be a fictional character, who would you be and why? Wonder Woman! She has it all: strength, class, beauty and confidence! (But what do her armpits smell like?)

Status: No Rose

Annaliese- Event Designer

She wore a mask because Arie is the “kissing bandit”.

BIO TIDBIT: Describe your idea of the ultimate date? My ultimate date involves good conversation, laughter, kissing and wine.

Status: Rose

Maquel- Photographer

She rolls in driving an Indy car, takes her helmet off and tosses her long blonde hair about. The other girls are watching and they are not amused.

BIO TIDBIT: Which non-U.S. city in the most romantic to you, and why? Paris. Obvi (I see an Eiffel tower in upcoming previews so she will be happy, if she makes it that long, obvi.)

Status: Rose (the final rose)

At one point in the night a girl is heard saying, “The older guys get, the better looking they get.”  I love the way they talk like he is 300 years old.  I am completely excited for this season, plus I really like Arie so I do hope he is able to focus and actually pick someone that is right for him.

In other news, I snapped this picture for you.  I’ve never seen this before in all the years of watching the Bachelor franchise.  Look at this weird champagne glass.  Or, could it be, a coffee cup?  Is she drinking something other than alcohol?  Do the producers know?  Or is it an Irish coffee?  Is this young whippersnapper drinking coffee to stay awake until the wee morning hours?  What do we think? Also, look how stinking cute she is.

bekah coffee cup

Arie is in the driver’s seat and wants us all to know he is switching stuff up this season.  I’m ready.  The girls are ready.  Rev your engines and get ready to race into this journey to find love.  That was so corny it physically hurt me.  I’m off to find coffee, now.

Tune in next week for more drama!

 

 

 

 

 

 

The First “Real” Christmas

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Tom and I have had many a Christmas together.  They have all been great, in different reasons.  I’m not going to lie, the first Christmas we had as a couple was amazing.  It was when I learned that Tom had the ability to lie to me about a gift.  He promised that he didn’t buy me a gun and not to get my hopes up.  Christmas morning I opened the most beautiful pink 1911 with mother of pearl hand grips.  Years later he got me again with the old, “honey don’t get your hopes up.  I’m not proposing to you on this trip.”  The whole drive home I was distracted by a big perfect diamond on my left hand.  This Christmas was different though than years past.

In the world of law enforcement sometimes Christmas morning is at 4:30 PM (1630).  Or 2:00 AM (0200).  Sometimes Christmas is the 23rd, or the 27th.  It’s not about what day it is or what time it is, it’s about having the family time together, whenever it works out.  Tom and I have made our peace with it, and it makes no difference.  Getting Christmas off as a cop is nothing to count on.  Having Christmas off as a dispatcher is nothing to count on.  Some agencies go with the ‘luck-of-the-rotation-draw’ and some allow you to take the day off, but that requires pretty high seniority.  The chances of both a cop and a dispatcher magically getting Christmas off together, pretty much impossible.

Now that I am not dispatching, we only have one shift work schedule to handle.  The thing about old cops is that they can’t wait to have the seniority to get off that horrible relaxing, exciting and wonderful night shift.  They all run away to day shift (which is bright, loud, boring and FULL of admin).  Why anyone would choose to go there is beyond me.  Either way, on Tom’s platoon he holds high enough seniority to get Christmas Eve and Christmas day off.  We got to have Carter this year for Christmas too.

This is the first year that the stars have aligned in such a way that Tom could have Christmas Eve and Christmas day free from work and that Carter could be here with us for ALL of Christmas Eve and all of Christmas and then some.

If you aren’t on Facebook, or aren’t following me on Facebook, I’m going to share a post I wrote on Christmas Eve at 9:30 pm.

I know I haven’t been a real dispatcher for two years now, but a part of me still feels a bit guilty being home with my family Christmas Eve night AND Christmas day.  Tom has seniority now so we are both here with Carter.  Tonight, Tom asked Carter what his favorite Christmas memory was.  He replied, “Now. Getting to spend our first real Christmas all together.” 

Thanks to the badges and the headsets covering for us.  I know what it’s like and I’m appreciative of all you do and the sleep you’re losing to work and still make a perfect Christmas for your family. 

Nothing like having an 8-year old punch you in the heart.  Man, I love that kiddo.

*****

On the 21st we did a Christmas light tour in Spokane and Tom surprised us with Dairy queen blizzards.  The dogs were with us and got hamburgers and they were quite pleased with dad’s plan.  There were many great light displays, but nothing compared to the ‘Big tree’.  It’s fantastic and the lights twinkle and flash in all different orders.

big tree

The night of the 22nd we surprised Carter and a few of his friends with a limo light tour.  Monica and I made treat buckets for the kiddos and my mom made a scavenger hunt of lights to look for throughout the journey.

limo snack buckets

The snack buckets included carrots & ranch dressing in fancy goblets, reindeer poop (raisins), chex mix, candy canes, snowman string cheese, individual sparkling cider bottles, Grinch popcorn, and other fun snacks.

limo

limo kids with sparkling cider

limo mon and me

Monica made us Merry Mimosa mugs customized with our names.

The boys thought it was hilarious that they were riding in a fancy limo eating a bucket of peanut butter each.

limo peanut butter

We even brought Home Alone to watch on the flat screen in the limo while in between light displays.  The kiddos all had a blast.

****

Christmas Eve morning Tom took us to the very fancy Davenport Brunch.  It was delicious.

davenport tree

Carter asked us if they had any napkins, which was confusing because his linen napkin was in his lap.  We explained that the linen square in his lap was his napkin.  He was confused, “They throw these away?”  Apparently our lack of fanciness was catching up to us.  He now understands that linen napkins can be laundered.

While we were waiting for our reservation, I became my mom for a few moments.  I explained to Carter the importance of looking up in older buildings and that even if the design is not your favorite style, there is much to be appreciated about the attention to detail that went into each pillar and beam and the intricate carvings.

davenport lobby

The chocolate fountain was most certainly Carter’s favorite.

****

Each year I add a building to my Christmas village.  This year, I finally decided to be realistic and add something I would certainly need were it a village I truly inhabited.

christmas village

village pharmacy

village pharmacy 2

It’s safe to say it was a truly wonderful first “real” Christmas all together.

 

From Vegas to the Exact Opposite of Vegas

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Don’t get me wrong, Vegas was great fun.  We came home and had one night in our house to sleep and change out clothes in the suitcase, then we left the next day to the ranch.  It was the beautiful opposite of Vegas.  Quiet.  Peaceful.  No bright lights.  Home-cooked free meals including vegetables.  Coffee. Free water from the spring.  Rest.  Recovery.  I love this place, especially in the Winter.  It’s just so beautiful and calming.

ranch in december

We spent six days resting, wrapping gifts, reading, eating, sleeping (not too late though because miss Maggie has a lot to yell about early in the morning).  There was one run-in with a raccoon, but Gran was able to call off the dogs in time.

The dogs tried to relax in between their treat-receiving.  Gran boils soup bones and chicken breasts ahead of time to prepare for her grand-pups’ arrival.

sarge at the ranch

On Friday Aunt J arrived and brought Carter with her.  We had some fun playing games and enjoying family time.

Saturday the Oregon Ducks played the Boise State Broncos.  I was quite nervous for this little event.  The house is very clearly a Duck house.  There is no wiggle room.  I knew I’d be going into this competition alone, so I figured strength in numbers and dressed Sarge up in a Boise shirt.

If you didn’t watch the game, let me just say that it was clearly a victory for the Broncos.  The ducks offense didn’t cross the 50 yard line until the second half.  When the offense finally scored, I am pretty sure it was on accident.  Long story short, I held my breath and my tongue for the whole game (because I’m no fool), but once it was safely over and the Broncos won, I could finally cheer.

When we were off the next day getting the tree from the timber property, I left a gift inside Gran’s car for her to enjoy.  I’ve since heard she was not impressed.

broncos ornament

The only thing that really matters though is that we had a good time with family recovering from the light and noise of Vegas.  We came home tired with a car full of presents.

tired sarge

tired carter

tired hero

We are blessed.

What Happens in Vegas Ends up on the Blog

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Bobby Pins & Bullets / Hold My Gatorade and Watch This / Uncategorized

I believe that is how the saying goes.  That or ‘What happens in Vegas ends up on YouTube.’

Not to worry folks; we left our mark.

Tom and I arrived on Thursday afternoon and checked into the Mirage.  We had a lovely volcano-view room, so that was fun.  We had a burger and milkshake for dinner our first night.  We went to LVB (Las Vegas Burger).  It was a great introduction to the price of food in Vegas.  The cheapest burger on the menu was $16.50.  That was a burger on a plate.  If you wanted to add fries and a soda, it was an additional $8.  ADORABLE.

I opted for the spiked milkshake to start off my trip.  I got the birthday cake and it came covered in sprinkles and with a piece of cake as garnish.  Cake should always be garnish by the way.  Who started the whole parsley garnish nonsense?

Vegas milkshake

Friday we explored a bit and for dinner tried a fun, new experience.  We would have waited and gone with Josh and Ashley, but Josh is very similar to his father who he is constantly teasing.  He wanted no part of this little experience.  Blackout Dining.  Have you heard of it?  Here is how it works: you put any light emitting devices (phone, watch, etc.) into a locker.  The menu is a mystery.  The waiter has night vision goggles and leads you into a pitch black dining room.  He helps you find your plate and utensils.  Walking your hand up to the end of the butter knife is how you find your water glass.  It was a 6 course meal.  The waiter would mysteriously drop the food and give instructions for eating (such as: A stabbing motion towards the center might yield the best results.  or, it  might be hot.) At the end of the dining experience we got to see the menu to see if we guessed what everything was correctly.

We thought it was quite fun and we enjoyed the adventure of it.  First thing when the waiter walked away we made sure we could find each other’s hands.  I love that man.

So am I right dad?  Would you cut your left arm off before paying $62 a person without knowing for sure that the dessert would be chocolate?  What are the chances you could handle a dining experience such as that?  Josh said we had hit about twelve strikes.

We quickly learned the way to afford drinks in Vegas.  For example, a simple rum and coke in most bars was anywhere from $14 to $18.  We forgot to rob a bank before we left.  Therefore, we found the penny slots at the Bellagio and settled in to “gamble”.  The pretty lady in the black dress soon learned our drink orders.  You see the drinks are free if you are gambling (i.e. pulling the handle once per minute or when she walks by) with a suggested dollar tip on each.  In a few hours we paid ten or twelve dollars total for four drinks each plus “gambling”.  Joke is on you, Vegas.

On Friday I might have thrown up on a slot machine in the Bellagio.  My bad.  It wasn’t even alcohol related. Welcome to my new body.

Saturday morning we ran into some good looking people.

vegas j and a

vegas ash and amy

Saturday included Senor Frogs and a pub called the Tilted Kilt.  It was fun, but towards the end I needed to go to the bathroom.  They pointed us towards the restroom sign.  It was up a flight of stairs.  Tom took me out of the pub to find a bathroom with an elevator or on the ground level.  That took about a mile of walking back behind two hotels and through a parking garage entrance to a casino to finally find the bathroom.  Saturday night was the great George Strait in concert.  It was really fun to see him in person and hear just how talented he really is.

vegas strait

Tom was not impressed with the opener for the concert, or the volume of her.

vegas concert

Sunday I got to be a superhero.  I did the Slotzilla zipline.  It was a hoot.  Ashley flew above Freemont Street with me.  We laughed and enjoyed it.  At the beginning they told us to brace for the impact at the end when it stops you.  I am not sure how to ‘prepare’ for that.  I attached a gif of us at the beginning leaving the slot machine and at the end.

vegas zip line 1

vegas zip line 2

We got to visit the Taco Bell Cantina.  It’s a slightly fancier Taco Bell that also serves frozen alcohol beverages.  That was definitely on my list.

Poor Ashley had a ‘predicament’ as she put it.  We said a predicament of having to hold both vodka and gelato is not at all the worst predicament.

vegas ashley

Speaking of gelato… the lady at the Bellagio place yelled at Josh and told him to “follow the instructions on the screen!”  The prompt on the screen was would you like to tip?  Josh said that was the easiest set of instructions he has had yet!

See that background?  That’s the Bellagio Christmas display.  It was fairly impressive I thought.

vegas bellagio 2

I think Josh is getting down Tom’s picture face pretty well.

vegas bellagio 3

These polar bears are made completely of flowers.

vegas bellagio 4

The scarf on this flower polar bear is made of red rose petals.

vegas bellagio 5

I love the fountains at the Bellagio too.  So neat.  I guess there are over 100 songs that the fountain is choreographed to, although we only saw a few.

The one to God Bless the USA was pretty cool.

vegas bellagio fountain

vegas bellagio fountain 2

Some of my favorite highlights were:

  • Being able to say “I heard someone threw up on that slot machine a few days ago.”
  • Tom taking the peace beads from the monk on the street and then when he asked for a donation, Tom donated peace beads.
  • Ashley telling me she loved me before we shot out of the slot machine six stories up… just in case we plummeted to our death.
  • Any time Josh was grossed out by someone, especially people dressed up on the streets, namely the person dressed as ‘retired stripper’.
  • Losing money playing the big 6 wheel with Ashley.
  • The blackout date with my love.
  • Josh getting flustered and accidentally betting on the wrong team, then winning money.
  • Ashley sharing her unlimited mimosas with me, but only when the server went into the kitchen.
  • Bumblebee Transformer yelling at Tom for only tipping a dollar.
  • Tom vandalizing every notepad at a bank of phones in the Bellagio.
  • Tom being so old that the concert lights and noise made him nauseas for 12 hours.
  • Tom fixing the leak in my oxygen tubing with gum.
  • Us almost going to a drag brunch until Ashley read the sign and realized we were in the wrong line.  (This is why you learn to read, kids).
  • The four of us were playing slots and Josh went to bed.  The lady sat down at the machine right after him on her first spin won money. Tom laughed about that for a while.
  • Accidentally borrowing drink glasses from the Paris.  They made it all the way home to Post Falls.
  • The amount of cowboy boots on the Vegas strip with the rodeo in town.

All in all, we had a great trip with lots of memories made!  Looking forward to and saving our pennies and hundreds to go again sometime!

My Guide to Las Vegas with POTS and Other Forms of Dysautonomia

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Big Medical Words / Hold My Gatorade and Watch This / Oxygen-y Stuff / Uncategorized

So you want the bright light city to set your soul, set your soul on fire, eh? Here is my little guide to surviving with POTS.

Water

Pack it, or plan to bring a small fortune to stay hydrated.  The other option is to learn to like tap water.  Bottles of water on average were anywhere between $3.50 to $6.  These are for 20 oz bottles, not even big bottles.  Some hotels had vending machines with bottled water, but those were still around $4 each.  If you’re living the POTS life, you need a LOT more water than that.  We searched high and low though for the very best deal, in case you don’t want to pack it.

The very best deal we could find was the CVS across the street from the Mirage.  It was $2.39 for a gallon.  Walgreens and the ABC store both had water for $2.99 a gallon.  Your first stop after landing should be one of these places.

Electrolytes

Don’t count on being able to buy Gatorade in Vegas.  Gatorade wasn’t found anywhere.  We did find PowerAde once, and only once.  We found a small bottle for $5 at the Bellagio pool gift shop.  I suggest you bring Nuun tablets, or something similar to dissolve in water and make your own electrolytes.  I don’t get paid to say that I like Nuun tablets, I just prefer them the most.  But, if Mr. & Mrs. Nuun happen to be reading this, feel free to give me some money.

vegas powerade

Wheeling Around

Bring someone strong and able to push your chair.  Walking (or rolling) the strip is no easy task.  Some parts have crosswalks where you can cross, but other portions have fences that do not allow you to cross at the corner, but require you to walk up the street a bit and then take an escalator to a sky bridge to cross the street, then go back down again on the escalator.  Obviously escalators are not made for wheelchairs, but there are elevators available.  They are farther back behind the escalators through a sketchy alley way.  Special bonus: some of the elevators smell like urine and one had a man passed out sleeping on his skateboard on the floor.  He was there several hours because we saw him twice.

They also have scooters available to rent, but I’m not sure on the pricing.  Also, if you think about a street corner filled with people, it’s definitely a hassle to wait to be able to roll the wheelchair down the sidewalk ramp instead of jumping off the curb.

Vegas is filled with adorable cobblestone too.  Be prepared for bumps.  I should point out that Ubers are readily available and taxis too.  As with most places, Uber is more affordable than taxis.

From a wheelchair you get to see Vegas from a whole different perspective.  You can’t see over most table games and railings, not to mention you are traveling through Vegas at hiney level.  Maybe that is a bonus for you.  I found it a bit annoying.

I don’t use my wheelchair much in my life around home.  So when I suddenly am being wheeled a few miles a day, my dizziness, and sometimes my nausea increases.  Going up and down on the elevator over and over can help to create that “I just got off a cruise ship and I feel like I’m swaying when I’m standing still” feeling.  I found rest to be incredibly necessary.  Afternoons always included a nap.

I know this is stupid and vain, but being in a wheelchair makes attractive selfies difficult.  I prefer a camera above looking down, but if you are trying to get someone else in the picture, it’s frequently a camera looking up to capture you and another person, unless they come down to your level.  At the end of the day, choose to enjoy the moment and the time and not worry about an unflattering picture.  It’s small potatoes, which brings me to food.

vegas wheelchair 1

Eating

If you have POTS, then you know that eating is most effective and least symptomatic when eating a bunch of small meals, instead of two or three large meals.  That’s not what Vegas is about.  Vegas is about all you can eat, all at once for one price.  If you do the buffet scene, take your time.  The water is free and unlimited too.  I am sure it is tap water too, but I do think in some of the machines it is filtered, since it tastes less like a swimming pool.

If I could go back again I would bring some little salty snacks and granola bars, etc. to help in between the expensive Vegas meals.  Sure, I could get a piece of pizza in the afternoon, etc. but it is $12-$15 for a slice, and then it seems like you absolutely must finish it, so you don’t waste the money.

Don’t think you can eat half of your dinner and take the rest back to the fridge in your room.  No fridge. No microwave.  I’m not talking about a Travelodge; I’m talking the Mirage and the Bellagio.  No fridge.  No saving or buying string cheese at the Walgreens and storing it in your room.

Bathrooms

Locate the restroom as soon as you enter a casino or restaurant.  You never know if you are going to suddenly vomit on a slot machine in the Bellagio, not that I know anyone who did that.  (It was me.  I did that.  It wasn’t even alcohol related sadly.)

Also, sometimes the bathroom is a trick.  We were in one pub having dinner and asked about the bathroom location.  We walked over to the sign and there was a set of stairs up to the bathroom.  No elevator.  We ended up walking almost a mile back behind two different hotels in through a parking garage to find the closest bathroom.  That was frustrating.

Oxygen

If you are dependent on oxygen, I would make a plan to bring a concentrator.  Everyone, everywhere smokes in your mouth.  I have tanks and a concentrator at my house at home, but for trips I rent a portable, airline approved oxygen concentrator for $100 a week.  It’s annoying to have to pay for it, but I’d rather have it than not.

Yes, there are oxygen bars in Vegas.  I don’t know how many liters per minute they can do though, so I wouldn’t count on them being able to do whatever your prescription approves.  They do have cute bright colored water bubbling though too.

Light & Sound Sensitivities

Vegas is kind of known for being bright and loud.  If you have a lot of issues with neon and flashing lights, it might not be for you.  I have issues with certain fluorescent lights increasing my POTS symptoms.  I was only really bothered by one buffet’s lights.  The other lights didn’t cause me too many issues.

Tom said that Vegas would be perfect for our eight year old because there are people everywhere making noise for no reason at all, other than just to make noise.  He’s not wrong.

Debrief

It might seem like I’m being negative, but that is not the case at all.  I just want to be sure that you know what you are preparing for exactly.  I had a great time.  We went to the George Strait concert and it was amazing to hear him in person.  My brother and his wife flew in and met us there for our little Christmas together.  We made all kinds of memories together.  My brother got flustered in the sports betting area and accidentally bet on the wrong team.  He ended up winning $20.  My husband won $69 on the nickel slots and $20 at Roulette.  My sister won $38 on the big six wheel.  I donated to the casino on every game I played, but I made my money back in free drinks.  I’m no fool.

vegas wheelchair 2

 

 

 

 

A New Venue and a Reminder about Faith

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All summer I saw signs about Aunt J’s Farmer Market.  I remember this because Carter has called my sister-in-law, Tom’s sister, Aunt J since he could talk.  I never made it to the market throughout the summer.  Timing, illness, planning, whatever the reason, it just didn’t come together.  I was scrolling on Facebook and saw an ad about a Small Business Saturday and a Holiday Marketplace being held at Aunt J’s Farmer’s Market.  I was confused at first since it is Idaho and much too cold to be outside at a Farmer’s Market.  I was relieved to see that it was an indoor market.  The ad said that they had room for one or two more vendors.  I sent a message just to look into vendor fees and pricing to see if it was something I could do maybe.  I got a message back quickly and it was exceptionally reasonable and since I had no plans on that day, I figured, hey why not give it a try.

Without wanting to deplete my inventory at Salvage 7 (my store space), I had to work somewhat quickly to whip up a few more holiday rustic/farmhouse style goodness things to sell.  **it should be noted that last year after selling little mesh garlands, Tom told me, “hey babe, each month throughout the year you should make a few of those and start preparing for the upcoming Christmas season so at the last second you aren’t rushing around.  I failed to do any such thing. ** I worked for a few days as quickly as my little body would allow to prepare and I ended up having a nice little set up for the Farmer’s Market.

holiday marketplace

Overall, it was a somewhat slow day.  We all had a lot of interest on social media, but customers were a bit sparse.  Either way, I still made money, but what I gained that day was worth so much more.

I had seen a flyer hanging up talking about a fundraiser to ‘Save Aunt J’s Farm’.  There was no further explanation.

I got the opportunity to learn about this little farm.  I got to meet Aunt J herself and she welcomed me and took me on a tour of the farm.  She showed me all of the animals she has and her garden, fruit trees, raspberry patch, and her 200 blackberry bushes.  She showed me her grain barn, where she makes her own chicken, pig, and goat food.  She talked to me about more than just the animals though.  She talked to me about how God has been working in her life.

Without getting into too many details, let me give you the short version.  J had been married to her high school sweetheart for 36 years.  One day, things changed.  He became violent and angry with no reason given.  Divorce became the only option due to her safety.  Brutal does not begin to describe the constant fear and pain she went through.

Long story short, even though he took more than half of their farm to a new location, she has five months to come up with $70,000 to buy out his half of the farm and continue the work in the community she is doing.  She has cried and spent many hours in prayer and God has always said that he will provide and little by little, doors have continued to be opened.  Free hens arriving.  Pigs getting pregnant.  A family in the church showing up to say that they had been praying and were told that Aunt J needed $600 for the farm.  She had no idea what that would be for but graciously and humbly took the money.  Two days later a pipe burst and flooding ensued leaving the pigs with mud up to their shoulders and 3000 gallons of water lost.  Calling for help pumping out the pen and repairs and filling up the water again came to a total of exactly $600, not a penny more, not a penny less.  Around each corner God has provided.

She works hard all day to keep the farm running with only her and a part time farm hand.  She makes goat milk soap and bakes chocolate zucchini cake to sell at market.  She sells eggs and is licensed to sell pork in smaller portions for those who can’t afford to buy a half a pig or a whole pig.  She teaches children and takes them on farm tours often to teach them how to care for animals appropriately.  She spoils her goats exactly as much as we do too.  She makes goat cookies especially for them.  I didn’t have the heart to tell her that our goats like Doritos, whiskey, and chocolate chip cookies.

She was told that her grain needed to be inspected by the FDA for her to sell it.  They came out to do the inspection of her grain barn and feed.  She passed all tests and inspections with flying colors and at the end of the day, the FDA agent prayed with her and said he would continue to pray for her and her farm.  A week later the FDA agent called and asked if he could bring his family out to see her farm and pray with her.  Each step of the way, God is providing and strengthening her and giving her peace and comfort in his plan.

Hearing this story was moving.  Watching her speak about her life and the fact that before all of this she had grown away from God for thirty years.  In the midst of all of this she picked up her bible.  She has been keeping a journal of all the blessings that God has brought to her through this tumultuous journey.

I was offered to stay at the market through the spring and summer too, when they move a bunch of it outdoors and it becomes a local produce market, which I am thrilled about.  I told her a bit about me and she said she would be praying for my health and she looks forward to getting to know me more.  In fact, her last words to me were, “Well Amy, welcome to the farm.”

Never before have I met someone and in that first meeting felt so truly moved to want to help her.  Unfortunately, I don’t have a spare $70 grand laying around, but I will do what I can to help.  There is a go fund me for this farm, which I will share here if you feel so inclined to help with funds.  Either way, if you pray, would you include Aunt J in your prayers please? Would you consider sharing this blog or her go fund me as well?  I have a hard time seeing someone working so dang hard to keep something available as a resource to the community.  Look, she is living a humble life working hard and just wishing to be able to continue on in that fashion.  She is not living in a big fancy mansion and paying people to tend to the animals and such.  She is out in the stalls and with the animals every day.  Her boots are covered in mud and manure and she dreams to keep them that way.

https://www.gofundme.com/save-aunt-js-farm

 

 

 

Dancing with the Stars: The Winner of the Mirrorball is…

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Dancing with the Stars Recaps / Uncategorized

It’s night two of finals, folks.  We’re here.  We’ve made it all this way.  It’s the final three and by the end of these final two hours we will have a new mirrorball champion.  Spoiler alert: Sharna doesn’t win.  Maybe next season they won’t give her a basketball player.

Ok, I’m not bitter.  Here we go.

What I like about the finale: finding out the winner and celebrating.

What I hate about the finale: 1 hour and 40 minutes of recaps, musical performances, and dances of previous contestants and pros.

Tonight we get to watch each couple dance their favorite dance all over again for judge scores.

Lindsey & Mark: Jive Replay

We got a redo of their happy Wake me up Before you GoGo jive.  You remember, the cute one when they started and ended in the stand up bed prop.  It’s just as cute as it was before.  The judges agreed.

  • Carrie Ann- 10
  • Len- 10
  • Bruno- 10

Frankie & Witney- Argentine Tango Replay

They chose their Pirates of the Caribbean Argentine Tango.  It was excellent once again.  The judges agreed.  I still loved the costumes.

  • Carrie Ann- 10
  • Len- 10
  • Bruno- 10

Jordan & Lindsay- Salsa Replay

I don’t remember this dance, but Lindsay was wearing denim panties so there’s that.  Either way the judges said it was amazing and magical.

  • Carrie Ann- 10
  • Len- 10
  • Bruno- 10

Ok, we got three dances from people competing and we’re one hour into the show.  There were songs and dances and videos and commentators.  Next up will be fusion dances and then supposedly a mirrorball will be given out to someone.

It’s 10:15 and there have been no more competitor dances.  Oh thank goodness… I see the ballroom.  We must be getting close.  Nope, just a recap of the last three weeks, but I remember because I watched it.

Fusion Dances

Lindsey & Mark- Tango/Cha Cha Fusion

Well, it was a great mash up of two somewhat difficult dance styles.  Len loved it because there was no messing around and it went straight into the routine.    Carrie Ann called it not a fusion, but alchemy.  This partnership was fantastic, really and I will miss it.  Who could Mark get next season that would be this fun to watch?  Ugh.  It’s the end of an era.

  • Carrie Ann- 10
  • Len- 10
  • Bruno- 10

Frankie & Witney- Tango/Foxtrot Fusion

Frankie says if he doesn’t win, this was still the most amazing experience of his life.  Silver is their color theme, but all I see is gold.  Len tells Frankie that he hasn’t always been the judges champion, but he’s always been the people’s champion, which is code for “You’re not gonna win, bud.”

  • Carrie Ann- 10
  • Len- 9
  • Bruno- 9

Jordan & Lindsay- Salsa/Paso Doble Fusion

I feel like the judges could watch with blindfolds and would award all 10’s.  (Mind you, I’m typing this before they have awarded scores).  He’s the most well rounded male celeb they have ever had, according to Len.  Carrie Ann was actually right once when she said that there is really nothing else to say.  Well, that I agree with.

  • Carrie Ann- 10
  • Len- 10
  • Bruno- 10

After their dance they jumped into the sleigh with Tom and the mirrorball and rushed over to the Grove so that Nick Lachey could perform while they stand there awkwardly waiting to find out who won.

But first, surprise! Two celebs are headlining with the dancing with the stars tour: Jordan and Frankie!

Seven minutes until 11.  Tell me they are announcing the winner soon.

Ah, they have envelopes.  It is time.

The couple in third place is: Frankie & Witney.  Not a big huge surprise there, but I’m happy that he gets to continue on with the dancing with the stars team.

The winners and new champions of dancing with the stars are:

Jordan & Lindsay

Now, a reminder, we can be mad at the producers for casting a dancer from Broadway as a contestant, but we can’t be mad at Lindsay or at Jordan.  All they did was do their best, and to be honest, I’m happy to see Lindsay win a mirrorball.  She is a great teacher and choreographer.

In other news: Tom casually mentioned that in the Spring they will be doing a special athletes-only edition.  Can I please cast my vote now for Sharna to get a hockey player?  Ok, great.  Thanks ABC producers.

Thanks for following along with me this season!

 

 

 

 

Dancing with the Stars: Night One of Finals

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Dancing with the Stars Recaps / Uncategorized

It’s the first night of Finals.  Tonight will include a judge’s challenge which is a redemption dance chosen by a judge from one of their dances earlier this season that did not receive high scores.  After that is the ever popular freestyle round, which is always incredible.  Not to mention, a freestyle round including choreography from Mark and Lindsay.  The only thing that would make it better would be if Sharna was choreographing a routine.  Oh and the guest judge is some blonde lady, named Julianne Hough.

In case you forgot our final four couples are Drew & Emma, Frankie & Witney, Jordan & Lindsay, and Lindey & Mark.

Drew & Emma

Bruno shows up in rehearsals in a very interesting Village People-esque construction outfit.  Drew comments just how dainty his tool belt is, which I find just excellent.  Bruno tells us that Drew is the dark horse in this competition and I would agree.

Drew works on a Paso Doble and comes as close to wowing the judges as possible for him.  Len says he finally had finesse.  Julianne says he had confidence.  Bruno was impressed with his posture.  Carrie Ann is heartbroken because it was his best dance.  I’m not even going to pretend that I speak her language.

  • Carrie Ann- 9
  • Len- 9
  • Julianne- 9
  • Bruno- 9

Frankie & Witney

Carrie Ann showed up in rehearsals to encourage Frankie.  She tells him he can win this.  Not only does she want a foxtrot, she wants Frankie to have a solo.  All foxtrots should be danced to Frank Sinatra songs.  Witney has big bouncy loose curls and a gorgeous baby pink gown, half see-through and half sequins.  Oh, and long silk gloves.  Carrie Ann loved it.  Len said he still has a little work to do on his frame, but overall it was a great job.  Julianne says she was transported to the golden age of Hollywood.  She calls him a Frank Sinatra manly man.

  • Carrie Ann- 10
  • Len- 9
  • Julianne- 10
  • Bruno- 9

 Jordan & Lindsay

They start with the back story of their struggle last week with both having injuries.  They paint a beautiful under dog story that no one across America buys.  Len shows up to say their last Charleston lacked Charleston content.  They whip up a fantastic number and to no one’s surprise completely own the dance floor.

  • Carrie Ann- 10
  • Len- 10
  • Julianne- 10
  • Bruno- 10

Lindsey & Mark

Long distance via Skype, Julianne calls up to tell them they get to redeem their week two quickstep.  Lindsey and Mark are both touring around the country.  A soon as Lindsey gets off the stage at night they rehearse until 3 AM.  I can’t even imagine.  I would not be good famous.  I love sleep way too much.

Anyways, she nailed it.  Julianne is super impressed with how well she did.  Carrie Ann says she is the most improved dancer in the competition.  Len says even though he doesn’t like to use the vile American word, the dance warranted it: awesome.  My only complaint is that her dress was too long.  I like being able to see the feet more.

  • Carrie Ann- 10
  • Len- 10
  • Julianne- 10
  • Bruno- 10

 Drew & Emma- Freestyle

They do a super cute little swing/jazz type number with a bunch of fun trick moves and lifts.  It’s adorable and fun and bouncy.  Drew looks like he is having so much fun.  Emma choreographs what is a mixture of Drew and Emma- two quirky weirdos.  I loved it.  Len says that on week one he called him a fixer upper and he says he is all fixed up now and is a hot property.  I am expecting a 10- LEN.  Bruno says he was in between Maks and Val and yet he could only look at Drew.  All happy and great, but oh wait.  Carrie Ann is here to remind him that he was off time a few times.

  • Carrie Ann- 9
  • Len- 10
  • Julianne- 10
  • Bruno- 10

Not that any one of the judges is especially bitchy or anything.

Frankie & Witney- Freestyle

Witney has a vision for this freestyle.  She wants it to be powerful and strong and serious.  The producer calls midway through the week to suggest something more fun and happy.  She goes back and forth and Frankie says he trusts her 100%.  She decides to go with her gut, which is the more powerful song that she things describes Frankie and his journey through this season.  When Frankie is talking to the camera about this dance and this season, he breaks down in tears talking about how much Witney has helped him in his life.

Julianne loves that he said he trusts Witney no matter what.  She is happy he went with the hard dance.  Bruno says he really, really, really liked it.  Len has all positive comments.  Carrie Ann reminds him that he lost steam a little bit at one part.

  • Carrie Ann- 9
  • Len- 9
  • Julianne- 10
  • Bruno- 10

Jordan & Lindsay- Freestyle

Can I just start by saying that if I was on the show and I made it to freestyle, I would want Lindsay or Sharna to choreograph my routine.  She is amazing.  They dance to Puttin’ on the Ritz and it is full of technique and skill and tricks and lifts and glitz and a true show stopper.  It was everything you would hope to see in a freestyle.  Bruno calls him a superstar.  Carrie Ann says his star shines brightly.  Len says it was a cracker jack of a number; brilliant.  Julianne reminds him that they worked together on Grease and this show has made him so much better.

And in the wise words of my mama, “This kid is so good he could dance on Broadway.”

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  • Carrie Ann- 10
  • Len- 10
  • Julianne- 10
  • Bruno- 10

Lindsey & Mark- Freestyle

Mark is the king of crazy ideas and choreography.  This starts out with them conducting an orchestra and is a general mashup of all dance styles.  And oh look, she’s playing her violin while in hold and while Mark is lifting her upside down.  Well, that is quite the trick.  STANDING OVATION.  Julianne calls it Tim Burton quirky and elegance.  Talk about a crazy dance.  Bruno calls it a modern classic extravaganza.

  • Carrie Ann- 10
  • Len- 10
  • Julianne- 10
  • Bruno- 10

I better just show you how cool this was, in case you missed it.

And oh no, now someone has to be eliminated.  The first couple competing tomorrow night is Jordan and Lindsay.  Also dancing for the mirrorball are Lindsey and Mark.  The couple going home right now is…… Drew & Emma.

Ok, look, Drew was not the best dancer, but I’ve loved watching him grow and learn.  I am happy he made it as far as he did.

Tomorrow night is the big finale.  Who will win the mirror ball?  Will it be Jordan, the favorite since the beginning?  Lindsey, a natural performer, but newer dancer?  Or the underdog, Frankie?  Will he swoop in for the win?