Monday, December 30, 2019

Happy New Year!

Looks like I'm taking off New Year's, as well as Christmas! By the time  I remembered I hadn't posted anything last week, I believe it was already Christmas day.

I had a great time with lots of family visiting from out of town. Everyone has returned home now, and I'm in decompression mode gearing up for 2020! I'll be back next week, but for now, Happy New Year!

Monday, December 16, 2019

It's a Wonderful Life

Wow, Christmas is nine days away! No time to blog, so time for a re-run.  

Did you know that the Christmas film classic It's a Wonderful Life wasn't thought to be that wonderful upon its initial release? Who hasn't seen this wonderful film at Christmastime and felt teary-eyed and warm all over?  Great movie, right? Well that's not what the critics initially thought. Check out the story below from Wikipedia:

It's a Wonderful Life is a 1946 American Christmas fantasy comedy-drama film produced and directed by Frank Capra, based on the short story and booklet The Greatest Gift, which Philip Van Doren Stern wrote in 1939 and published privately in 1945.
The film stars James Stewart as George Bailey, a man who has given up his dreams in order to help others, and whose imminent suicide on Christmas Eve brings about the intervention of his guardian angel, Clarence Odbody (Henry Travers). Clarence shows George all the lives he has touched, and how different life in his community of Bedford Falls would be if he had never been born.
Despite initially performing poorly at the box office because of stiff competition at the time of its release, the film has become regarded as a classic, and is a staple of Christmas television around the world. The film is considered one of the most loved films in American cinema, and has become traditional viewing during the Christmas season. Theatrically, the film's break-even point was $6.3 million, approximately twice the production cost, a figure it never came close to achieving in its initial release. An appraisal in 2006 reported: "Although it was not the complete box office failure that today everyone believes ... it was initially a major disappointment and confirmed, at least to the studios, that Capra was no longer capable of turning out the populist features that made his films the must-see, money-making events they once were."
It's a Wonderful Life is now considered one of the greatest films ever made. It was nominated for five Academy Awards, including Best Picture, and has been recognized by the American Film Institute as one of the 100 best American films ever made, placing number 11 on its initial 1998 greatest movie list, number 20 on its revised 2007 greatest movie list, and placing number one on its list of the most inspirational American films of all time.Capra revealed that this was his personal favorite among the films he directed, and that he screened it for his family every Christmas season.
I'm looking forward to seeing it soon! How about you? Thanks for visiting and have a great week!

Originally posted 12/17/18

Monday, December 9, 2019

Harriet: Fact vs. Fiction

I still haven't seen the movie Harriet yet, but plan to over the Christmas holiday. Since I have just completed a screenplay, I now understand why movies veer away from the complete facts of historical narratives, or become totally different stories when based on works of fiction. Catalyst, motivation, story arc and time constraints are just a few of the reasons!

Here's some background information on Harriet Tubman from Wikipedia if you don't know much about her:

Harriet Tubman (born Araminta Ross, c. March 1822 – March 10, 1913) was an American abolitionist and political activist. Born into slavery, Tubman escaped and subsequently made some 13 missions to rescue approximately 70 enslaved people, including family and friends, using the network of antislavery activists and safe houses known as the Underground Railroad. During the American Civil War, she served as an armed scout and spy for the Union Army. In her later years, Tubman was an activist in the struggle for women's suffrage. Click here for more.

Now here's a fact mentioned later in the above quoted article:

In 1849, Tubman became ill again, which diminished her value as a slave. Edward Brodess tried to sell her, but could not find a buyer.[Angry at him for trying to sell her and for continuing to enslave her relatives, Tubman began to pray for her owner, asking God to make him change his ways. She said later: "I prayed all night long for my master till the first of March; and all the time he was bringing people to look at me, and trying to sell me." When it appeared as though a sale was being concluded, "I changed my prayer", she said. "First of March I began to pray, 'Oh Lord, if you ain't never going to change that man's heart, kill him, Lord, and take him out of the way.'" A week later, Brodess died, and Tubman expressed regret for her earlier sentiments.

Below is the same incident as portrayed in the movie (this is from's article What's Fact and What's Fiction in Harriet?):

In the movie, as in real life, Harriet’s journey to freedom is kicked into high gear upon the death of her master, Edward Brodess. Brodess’ son Gideon had caught Minty praying for the death of his father after he refused to set her free. Tight on cash and unnerved by her seemingly prophetic praying power, he puts Minty up for sale, and Minty leaves her husband behind in her rapid solo escape. Her father helps her tap into the Underground Railroad through a local free black preacher—based on Dorchester County’s real-life freed slave, preacher, and Tubman collaborator Reverend Samuel Green—and after an almost 100-mile journey, she makes it to Philadelphia.

Harriet really did pray for the death of her master...but it’s unlikely that she was sold for that reason. In reality, as in the movie, the Brodess family was in dire straits after the death of Edward, and Eliza, his widow, planned to sell slaves to pay off debts.

Be sure to read the entire article from here to see how closely the movie sticks to the facts.

Have you seen Harriet yet? If so, what did you think? Thanks for visiting and have a great week!

Monday, December 2, 2019

Crock Pot Chicken Tacos

I've been looking for an easy chicken taco recipe and just found one at This is super simple and prepared in the crock pot. That just happens to be my favorite kind of recipe. Can't wait to try it!

4 skinless boneless chicken breast halves
1 cup salsa
1 cup canned diced tomatoes with chiles
1 package taco seasoning mix
1/2 onion, diced

Combine salsa, canned tomatoes, and taco seasoning.
Place onions & chicken in the slow cooker and top with tomato mixture.
Cook on low 7-8 hours or high 3-4 hours.

Remove chicken from slow cooker and shred. Return to slow cooker and stir in juices.
Serve in taco shells, on salads, pizzas or in bowls over rice!

Do you like chicken tacos?  Thanks for visiting and have a great week!