Monday, January 30, 2012

Ahhh! Need My Computer!

I'm at the point now that I'm pouting about my computer. It still isn't fixed. I keep going in circles with getting a replacement. It is beyond frustrating. I managed to borrow one on Friday and again tonight, but I'm only getting about 20 minutes to use it when I get it. /head-desk Working on the whole thing as we speak though I'm not sure its going to do me any good for a couple weeks. Thankfully, it is tax time and I'm really hoping I don't get screwed (again) this year and crossing my fingers for a decent return. We'll see. As usual, I will keep you updated.

Love is love, no matter the back story. <3 DS

Friday, January 27, 2012

Friday Five: Favorite Things About Children 13-17

Last week, my Friday Five was about my favorite things about children under 13. Today's Friday Five is my list of my favorite qualities of children 13-17.

  1. independence without responsibility- Teenagers experience incredible growths in independence during these years but don't have near the amount of responsibilities that adults take on. That is why we are adults and they are teenagers. Not because they are under 18, but because they don't have the responsibilities. I am incredibly envious of teenagers for that. What I would give to be able to worry about what I am going to wear to a date night instead of hoping I will be able to pay next month's car payment.
  2. potential for greatness- Teenagers have the world at their fingertips, pardon the cliche. They can be anything they want given enough determination, passion, and some luck in finances, networking, and application wording. When I was a teenager, I wanted to be an actress and moonlight as a veterinarian. When I was 16, I gave up my acting dreams since I hadn't stepped foot on a stage in a couple years and turned to being a veterinarian and writer. At 17, I wanted to be a veterinarian and a soldier. I changed my mind so many times... and the awesome thing was that I had that luxury!
  3. energy- I remember a time when I could stay up for 48 hours, get about 2 or 3 hours of sleep, and then go to class with a fully functioning brain... without coffee. Teenagers have so much freaking energy. I miss having energy like that. It seems like I can't stay up for more than 16 hours at a time now without feeling like my brain has went mushy. I certainly don't have the energy to be on the go all the time anymore. I'm not even 30 yet and there are days where I think getting old sucks!
  4. passionate about nothing and everything- Teenagers have two modes of operation: meh and OMFG.I.LOVE.IT! Teenagers, when they care about something... they really care. If it is something that they could get behind, they don't just walk passively with the idea, they throw a freaking parade complete with Super Bowl worthy entertainers. At least, that is what it looks like on the outside. It is hard to get a kid to find a passion sometimes, but all it takes is a tiny spark and they will take off with it. It is beautiful to watch, even if their passion is annoying or boring to me.
  5. industrious- Alright, I'm not saying that teenagers take on chores with a smile and cheer. I mean that they do as much "work" as they can with as little effort as possible. They find shortcuts and loopholes in everything they do so they can cram more "me" time into their lives. Sometimes, it blows up in their faces. But sometimes, they hit on some strokes of genius. If they can't find a way to shorten the time consumption of their workload, they might find someone else to do it. Or try to come up with a reason to avoid doing the work. Or something else equally creative. I know it can be annoying but just think of the thinking processes that go into their schemes. It is quite amazing.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Update On Computer Issue

We took the computer apart last night. The monitor wasn't the problem. It was not a video card issue. The power supply isn't broken. The RAM is fine. So we are pretty much down to it is the motherboard or the cpu. Bleh. So it looks like I will have to replace my computer. Sucks but it happens. I got almost 8 years out of the desktop so I'm not so terribly upset. Just hate having to drop so much dough. Glad it is tax time! Crossing my fingers for a refund.

My netbook makes it nearly impossible to blog. It likes to refresh the screen, go up and down randomly, and doesn't like opening web pages. It is pretty much only good for word processing. I will continue to update as I can so you know when I'll be back online. I hope it wont be more than a few days. I'm working on getting a temporary replacement from a family member to use until I can get a new rig. Will let you know.

Love is love, no matter the back story. <3 DS

Sunday, January 22, 2012

My Computer is Borked!

No idea what I did to my computer but it is broken. *sigh* The monitor will not come on after a restart. It says immediately that it is going to sleep. So my pc isn't booting from hibernation. I think it is a video card issue but I'm not sure. I'm not a computer person by any account. It isn't the monitor so I'm hoping it is a video card. Until I can get on a computer that isn't the size of a shoe (this netbook), I'm suspending my daily stuff. I'll keep you updated and will hopefully be back to regular posting by tomorrow evening or within a few day.

Love is love, no matter the back story. <3 DS

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Saturday Salute: Marines Demonstrate Inequality During Training

Okay, I apparently needed a LOT of sleep as I just woke up about 30 minutes ago. Yes, at 4pm. No, I was not awake until 8am. I went to bed sometime around 11pm to midnight. My back is killing me.

Anyways, sorry for the delay. Here is today's Saturday Salute.

I found this really neat article yesterday. Detachment Commander Lt. Col. Edward R. Sullivan addressed his group after they spent the day participating in fixed events for their Field Meet in California.

Ammo canisters were filled with different pay loads. Ropes provided traction for some teams and not others. Running lanes were shortened for some and lengthened for others.


Sullivan wanted to demonstrate to his soldiers that even though every soldier had the ability to win their competitions, certain groups were set up to make things either easier or more difficult in the attempt. This man is brilliant.

The quotes at the end of the article made me very proud.

I don't care about your gender, I don't care about your belief system, I don't care about your race, and I don't care who you prefer to sleep with. I care about how you accomplish the mission.

I think we can do better than we are doing right now. Take a look at this formation and ask yourself if we appear representative of the U.S.? Or, of the Marine Corps in general? Take some time over the weekend and think about what the MLK holiday really means. Think about how we can do better to keep the playing field equal.

Just incredible. Lt. Col Edward R. Sullivan embodies the spirit of the military that I have come to love. Nothing about a soldier matters except that they serve. That is all that should matter. Not how they pray. Not who they love. Not misdeeds in their past. They serve and so long as they serve honorably, that is all that should matter. Take a page from this man's book today. Do you represent the ideas of MLK like you should in your home, your workplace, your life?

Friday, January 20, 2012

Friday Five: Favorite Things About Children Under 13

Today's Friday Five is a list of my favorite qualities of children under 13. Next week, I'll do a list of my favorite things about teenagers.

  1. Curiosity- Kids want to know the "why" of everything. It can be irritating to hear "why" all the time but it is one of the few opportunities that adults outside of a classroom can witness the learning and growth of children first hand. I like to turn "why" into a learning opportunity and spend a lot of time showing my sisters pictures of stuff. We had a conversation about weight and body image yesterday. One of my sisters probably doesn't weigh 50 pounds soaking wet but she is 100% healthy for her height (she is going to be short like me). The other is quite chubby but by all estimates, is going to be ridiculously tall so the weight is still normal and healthy. The heavier sister was trying to understand why she is the weight she is and her sister is the weight she is. I understand the issue considering the heavier one is a year younger than the lighter one. So we had a talk about healthy weight in relation to diet and exercise. And then I explained how awful getting hung up on the "ideal" body image can be because Hollywood images are not realistic or healthy in any way. I showed them images of anorexic men and women and went on to explain to them how those people still see themselves as "fat" while their bodies are wasting away. We then read some of the articles about one of their favorite stars, Demi Lovato, from Disney Channel that has recently come out about her struggles with anorexia. I live for teachable moments.
  2. Creativity- Children have this innate ability to look at a mundane object and turn it into the most amazing thing. Sticks become guns for little soldiers and swords for pirates. Socks become puppets, chairs and blankets become caves. Pillow cases are capes, paper towel tubes are spy glasses. The possibilities are endless with children. I am envious of their creativity and the energy that comes from that creativity!
  3. Ability to laugh at life- I miss the days when little things didn't piss me off. Pencil lead broke? Children say "No big deal. Just go sharpen it." Even if it just broke 30 seconds before that. And 20 seconds before that. Now, I'm ready to throw the stupid thing across the room. They have this ability to shrug things off because they don't take life so seriously yet. Things that would cause major stress and drama for adults is just a little thing to a kid.
  4. Ability to forgive and forget easily- I love the nature of friendship with children. They are immediately best friends with nearly everyone they meet, regardless of age, gender, economic status, race, etc. Kids just don't see the difference in their friends. Now, when they get a little older, that is a whole different matter. But as a child, they don't have the prejudices that are learned as they grow older. And I love that. I also love the fact that they can be spitting mad at their friend and three seconds later, they are sharing secrets and juice boxes again. It is refreshing to watch.
  5. Simplistic understanding- "Why shouldn't I touch the stove? Oh, because it hurts? Okay, I wont do that again." Just because there is a biological or chemical explanation for something doesn't mean kids want to know. They don't touch a hot stove because it hurts. Not because the heat kills the tissue cells resulting in different degrees of burn injuries depending on what happens to the skin. Because it hurts. It is that simple with most kids. Kids have this amazing innate concept of common sense that I think we smother out of them with good intentions and over-supervision. Yeah, kids do stupid things like everyone else. The difference is that when a kid screws up and then has to deal with the consequences, he learns not to do it again. If we scoop him up and clean up his mess for him, he will keep doing it because he has learned nothing in the process.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Thursday Thought: Writers

I feel like I don't post enough about writing on this writing blog so today I decided to share some thoughts on writing. I came across these quotes and honestly felt like the writer spoke specifically to me. I hope they speak to you too. Ignore the colors if you can. I'm not sure why I highlighted them but it seemed like something to do this morning. COFFEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!

Writing is the only thing that, when I do it, I don't feel I should be doing something else.
Gloria Steinem

Writing anything is terribly hard but, alas for me, because I am addicted, a heck of a lot of fun. I often am sorry I ever started writing prose, because it is so hard. But I can't stop.
Judy Collins

English usage is sometimes more than mere taste, judgement and education -- sometimes it's sheer luck, like getting across the street.
E.B. White

There are some books that refuse to be written. They stand their ground year after year and will not be persuaded. It isn't because the book is not there and worth being written -- it is only because the right form of the story does not present itself. There is only one right form for a story and if you fail to find that form the story will not tell itself.
Mark Twain

Fill your paper with the breathings of your heart.
William Wordsworth

I notice that you use plain, simple language, short words and brief sentences. That is the way to write English - it is the modern way and the best way. Stick to it; don't let fluff and flowers and verbosity creep in. When you catch an adjective, kill it. No, I don't mean utterly, but kill most of them - then the rest will be valuable. They weaken when they are close together. They give strength when they are wide apart. An adjective habit, or a wordy, diffuse, flowery habit, once fastened upon a person, is as hard to get rid of as any other vice.
Mark Twain

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Blackout Against SOPA and PIPA

I'm not great with technology so I have no idea how to blackout my blogs in support of freedom of speech. Suffice to say that I am against anything that takes away a person's freedoms guaranteed by our Bill of Rights. I've been trying for the past 3 hours to figure out how to put the censor bar over my blog title and it isn't working. 

This is what I was hoping it would look like. Yay for Paint. Take action today. I have already emailed my Ohio Senators, Sherrod Brown and Rob Portman, and my district's House Representative Jean Schmidt. Find who to contact for your area here. Today's blackout post replaces the regularly scheduled Wednesday Weird. It will resume next week.

Censorship, like charity, should begin at home, but unlike charity, it should end there.
Clare Boothe Luce

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Tuesday Treat: Beer Battered Cheese Sticks

When I was younger, I walked to and from school every day. No, it wasn't up hill both ways. But it was a decent mile path each way. Rain or shine, frigid cold or sweltering heat, drifting snow, or flooded streets be damned, we walked to and from school every day until we got drivers licenses. And cars. Since I worked at the library, it took me considerably longer raising the funds so I walked well into my Junior year of High School. Most of the time, I didn't mind. Why? Because just before reaching the school, I passed a dairy bar. On the way to school, they were closed. But on the way home, they were open for business. My favorite items were the pizza hoagies and their cheese sticks.

Now, these cheese sticks were the mother of all cheese sticks in my opinion. They were perfectly golden brown, about 2/3 the length of an un-sharpened pencil, as big around as a quarter. They were greasy, messy, and 100% unhealthy. And $4 for an order of 5. I picked up an order a couple times a week to eat during my walk home. It occurs to me now that I might have raised the needed funds a bit sooner had I laid off the cheese sticks but oh well.

To my disappointment, the dairy bar burned down to the ground sometime near the end of my Junior year I think. I've never found another place that makes cheese sticks like this place. I've searched for recipes countless times but always seem to find ones that make puny cheese sticks that end up tasting like cardboard. Until now.

1 cup all purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/8 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 pinch ground white pepper
1 cup beer
4 cups safflower oil
1 egg white
1 pound mozzarella cheese sticks (frozen)


  1. In a medium bowl, mix together flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and white pepper. Gradually pour in the beer. Whisk briskly. Cover and allow mixture to stand 90 minutes.
  2. In a large, deep skillet, heat the safflower oil to 375 degrees.
  3. Whip the egg white into the batter. Dip mozzarella cheese sticks a few at a time into the batter.
  4. With a slotted metal spoon, place coated cheese sticks a few at a time into the hot oil. Fry 2.5 to 3 minutes, until a crisp golden brown. Drain on paper towels and serve hot.


  • Make sure the cheese sticks are frozen when you dip them into the oil, otherwise they will melt and run everywhere.
  • Roll the dipped sticks in breadcrumbs before frying for an extra crunch.
  • Don't like cheese sticks? This recipe works for everything! Zucchini, mushrooms, pickles, tomatoes, etc.

Monday, January 16, 2012

Monday Machination: Wikipedia Protests PIPA

The Internet Community is in cahoots! joins,,, and all of the Cheeseburger Network (like on Wednesday in an English language blackout of their sites in protest of the Protect IP Act which hits the Senate floor on January 24th. Read the full article here.

All 3.8 million English-language pages on Wikipedia will be unavailable from 12am to 11:59pm on Wednesday. Originally, the community blackouts were intended to protest Stop Online Piracy Act, but was switched to PIPA when House Rep Cantor announced that SOPA would not come to a vote until later. This announcement came after a White House announcement pledging to oppose any legislation that would undermine the Internet dynamic.

So will it work? This has been in the works for a while now so I certainly hope so. At least, I hope it will make Americans more aware of exactly what their Senators and Representatives are trying to take away from them in Washington. Call your Senators and Representatives and tell them to vote NO on these acts that will limit the exercise of freedom of speech. You can find the phone numbers, emails, etc for your area here.

I must say that I am glad I changed up my dailies so that my Wednesday blog (what used to be Wednesday Wiki) isn't interrupted!

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Sunday Scene: Old Woman Opens for RRH

I enjoy the occasional horror movie and really liked the scary, dark version of Red Riding Hood that came out last year. It stars Amanda Seyfried (Sophie in Letters to Juliet) as Valerie, one of the villagers menaced by a werewolf. I really enjoyed the movie, even if it didn't do so hot with others. Here is the opening monologue:

Old Woman VO: I'm a common woman. I was born in a common cottage in a common village. My life would likely be no different from yours, were it not for the most uncommon events that occurred during the winter of the year of our Lord 1325. I learned many things that winter. About people. About love. But, mainly I learned about loss.

To this day, I am the only person I know to be living who knows the whole truth about that horrible time. This is my tale.

*So this opening monologue is done in voice over and  is broken up by lightning and a young boy looking very nervously off in the distance as a wolf howls. It is very ominous. The whole film is decent in my opinion. Yeah, the acting is a little wooden and the dialogue is fairly cliche, but what isn't anymore? I thought it was great and Amanda Seyfried is fantastic!

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Saturday Salute: Downtime Is Downright Funny!

Downtime is downright funny! See these pictures found around the interwebs for proof! Note: None of these photos are mine. All are easily found on message boards and websites with a Google search.

Edit: 8/15/2012 Images removed. I don't want to be sued. Google "funny military photos" etc. for pictures.

Friday, January 13, 2012

Friday Five: My To Do List

I am a naturally scattered person. I can't get anything accomplished without making a to do list. I have a list for this weekend that I thought I would share.

My To Do List

  1. Transcribe paper edit: I'm done with editing Immo1. I just need to get it from the paper edit into its digital copy. I hate transcribing. I've learned that I hate this almost as much as I hate editing.
  2. Clean my desk area: I spend most of my day at my computer. My desk is littered with cigarette ashes, discarded paper, tissues, and empty pens. It really needs to be straightened up.
  3. Organize my Kindle: I have categories for the books on my Kindle. And I have about 300 ebooks to put in those categories. It is going to take a long time.
  4. Help the kids with science fair projects *need tri-fold boards: It is that time of year. Science fair is the 2nd week of February so we have to get these projects going. The girls are thrilled. Me, not so much.
  5. Find someone selling hay for the backyard: It has been raining a lot. My backyard looks and feels like a swamp. I step off the concrete patio and sink 3 inches into mud. The dogs are covered in it. I need a few hay bales to spread out about 10-15 in all directions around the patio.
So nothing difficult, but all time consuming. I have so much procrastinating to do that I don't know how I'll fit all this in over the weekend. haha I'll be working 18 hour days again like I do most days of NaNo in order to get that transcription done. :)

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Thursday Thought: Happiness

Be happy. Make your day great. Here are a couple quotes, both very correct while one is serious and the other is  silly. Be safe going into the weekend!

It is not easy to find happiness within ourselves, but it is not possible to find it elsewhere.
Agnes Repplier

Whoever said money cannot buy happiness forgot about puppies.
Gene Hill

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

New Color Scheme and Other Blog Stuff

Just a quick fyi, I changed around the default blog font and the blog colors. Let me know what you think please. I thought it would be nice to mix it up a bit with the new year and all. I definitely like the black background, white foreground, and black text though if it were really to my preference, it would be a black background, black foreground, and white text. My vision sucks so white text is much easier on my eyes. I'm not so crazy about the banner color at the top. It almost matches the blue of my "Yay coffee" picture, but it still irks me for some reason. I'll be tweaking this over the next few days.

What do you think of the colors? The font? The font size? I need outside opinions. :)

New Blog

Hey hey! My new blog, Puppy Breath and Belly Rubs, is up and running. Link there for all things pets, critters, etc. It is probably not going to be updated quite as regularly as Dee Declares... once the introductory posts are up, but we'll see how it goes. Have a great hump day folks!

Oooh. I have a new signature image that should make my closing line more normalized. Check it out below!

Wednesday Weird: Mannequin Prank

Today's weird Wednesday news is more stupid human error than weirdness. It is also from outside Dayton, Ohio... just a couple hours away from me. This article came out this morning about a woman that decided to prank one of her family members. She stuck a dressed up mannequin on the porch of a female family members, complete with a hooded sweatshirt, toy shotgun, and beer bottle. The owner of the house didn't know it was a prank and called 911 about a stranger sitting on her porch with a gun. When police arrived, they learned the "man" was a mannequin and then charged the prankster with a misdemeanor charge of inducing panic. The woman's family are not happy about her being charged with a crime for the prank, though the article states they understand why she is being charged.

The Clark County Sheriff's department is still reeling from the death of Deputy Suzanne Hooper around this time last year. So yes, they take an armed suspect seriously. That this woman thought sticking a man-shaped figure in man-type clothes with alcohol and a gun was funny, let alone okay... I'm just shaking my head. Let's hope she learned her lesson.

Love is love, no matter the back story. <3 DS

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Tuesday Treat: Cappuccino In a Jar

I love coffee. Like really love it. I found a recipe for a good "cappuccino" drink. Depending on which comments you believe, this may or may not meet your requirements for cappuccino, but it has caffeine so its good enough for me. This recipe makes 2 jars of cappuccino mix, one for you and one for a friend! Check the link for some really cute packaging ideas!

2/3 cup instant coffee grounds
1 cup powdered non-dairy creamer
1 cup powdered chocolate drink mix
1/2 cup sugar
3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
3/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
2 12 ounce canning jars


  1. Put the coffee grounds into a food processor to grind into a fine powder. If you do not have a food processor, put it into a plastic zip lock bag and roll with a rolling pin until finely ground.
  2. In a large bowl, combine the instant coffee, creamer, chocolate drink mix, sugar, ground cinnamon, and ground nutmeg. Stir together until well mixed. Divide the mixture between the two jars.
  3. Seal the jar tightly, cover the lid with a square cloth and wrap a rubber band over the cloth to keep it attached securely. Add a tag that reads: Mix 3 tablespoons of powder with 6 fluid ounces of hot water.


  • Cover with a holiday/gift themed square of cloth and ribbon to match the occasion.
  • Include with homemade bread, a package of biscotti, or whole cinnamon/candy cane sticks wrapped in cellophane to match your included flavoring.
  • Blend the ingredients with a whisk or blender before pouring into the jars to really mix it together.
  • Use whatever preferred powdered creamer... including flavored creamers like french vanilla.
  • Replace cinnamon and nutmeg with pumpkin spice, mint, or other spices for a variety of flavors.
  • Add chocolate chips, mini marshmallows, crushed peppermint candies etc. to match the flavor.
Love is love, no matter the back story. <3 DS

Monday, January 09, 2012

Snow White and the Huntsman

Has anyone seen this yet?

One of my favorite stories... with an unexpected cast and some serious tweaking.

So what I read is that instead of the traditional story: huntsman is sent out into the woods with Snow White to kill her and return with her tongue. He feels bad about killing the little girl so he sends her off to fend for herself in the woods, kills a deer and returns to the Queen with the deer tongue. She meets the 7 dwarves; is laced up too tight, eats the poisoned apple, and stabbed with a poisoned comb; and Prince Charming saves her life. In this new story, its a bit different. The Huntsman is sent into the woods to capture Snow White, kill her, cut out her heart, and return to the Queen, as her magic mirror not only promised that she would be the fairest in the land by Snow White's death, but also that she would live forever. (I don't remember that in the original version). He feels bad for the young woman so he takes her under his wing and trains her. She becomes a soldier who then leads a rebellion to take the Queen down. Also, this apparently has 8 dwarves. No idea why.

The cast is somewhat surprising to me. As you can see from the video, Charlize Theron plays Queen Ravenna. While she is certainly beautiful, the evil Queen has always been an older woman to me... not quite senior citizen, but not middle aged anymore either. Charlize looks about 23 if you don't look real close so she seems out of place for me. But she seems to play the evil part well by the above clip. Snow White is played by Kristen Stewart. This is the chick from Twilight. I hated the movies, mostly because I think Robert Pattinson looks, speaks, and acts like a tool. But Kristen Stewart's acting hasn't been the greatest either... granted neither of them had amazing material to work with anyways. But that is a whole 'nother rant. Maybe I'll post about it another time... I do like the books. Anyways, instead of the simpering layabout that we have come to know Kristen as Bella is, as Snow White, she looks pretty bad ass. She rides horses, runs through woods, and uses a sword (and possibly a shield?). They didn't show her speaking though so that makes me nervous. Yummy actor Chris Hemsworth (Thor and The Avengers) is Huntsman, in what appears to be a mentor role. With the way it is described, he takes Snow White under his wing... so my dirty mind naturally assumes "and into his bed" should follow. But, perhaps not. Sam Claflin plays Prince William who has been in love with Snow White since forever. So a love triangle? Maybe. I can't imaging Stewart being down for another movie where she has a love triangle happening. I could be wrong though.

The dwarfs, oddly renamed from the original Doc, Sleepy, Dopey, Sneezy, Grumpy, Happy, and Bashful, have a spectacular cast. We have Ian McShane (Blackbeard from Pirates of the Caribbean) as Caesar, Stephen Graham (Fulvio from Inkheart) as Nero, Bob Hoskins (Eddie Valiant from Who Framed Roger Rabit) as Constantine, Toby Jones (Doby from the Harry Potter series) as Cladius, Eddie Marsan (Inspector Lestrade in Sherlock Holmes) as Hadrian, Eddie Izzard  (c'mon It is Eddie Freaking Izzard!) as Tiberius, Ray Winstone (Ares in Percy Jackson and the Olympians: The Lightning Thief) as Trajan, and Nick Frost (Ed from Shaun of the Dead) as Gus. I have no idea why the dwarfs are renamed as old world conquerors but I suppose it has to do with the War theme in this movie. I'm stoked by Eddie Izzard naturally.

So what do you think? Going to be a good addition to the Snow White stories? Going to suck the life from the story? Too drastically different from the original to work? So different that its not going to be recognized as a Snow White version? I'm on the fence. I'll let my judgement wait until it comes out in June.

Love is love, no matter the back story. <3 DS

Monday Machination: Plot Twists Famous Movies Should Have Had

Ah... has come through for me today. I found this last night while browsing through their photoshop articles. Chainsaws, peepholes, unexpected dinosaurs, and worm holes are just a few of the first extras in some iconic movie scenes. Which one is your favorite? Mine are #14 and #8. #2 creeped me out beyond repair though. Also, to see the actual shop on #3, watch the window for a couple seconds. Have a great week everyone!

Love is love, no matter the back story. <3 DS

Sunday, January 08, 2012

Sunday Scene: Bastian Meets Mr. Coreander

One of my favorite movies as a child was The Never Ending Story. This movie, and others like it like Labrynth, Willow, The Princess Bride, The Goonies, The Lost Boys, etc, are very likely why I have always been a fan of the fantasy genre. In the following scene, Bastian has ran away from the bullies and found himself in a bookstore with the curator Mr. Coreander. It is one of the earliest scenes in the movie and sets everything up very nicely.

As I got older and realized what took place in the bookstore was more than an old man arguing with a kid, I thought about Mr. Coreander's argument about how Bastian's books were fine, but his book was special. I mean, elementary psychology at work at the least! How do you get a kid to do an activity you want them to do over a similar activity they want to do? Make them believe your activity is better and then tell them they can't do it. Brilliant! I found the script here. Click the jump for the specific scene.

Saturday, January 07, 2012

Saturday Salute: RIP Lucky and DASY

I'm going to keep this short as I'm crying a bit over these articles and really just need to go cuddle my puppy.

Article #1: Military working dog, Lucky, passed away in September from cancer. He was 10 years old and served 5 tours in Afghanistan and Kyrgyzstan. This dog provided extra security for president, vice-president, and congress visits in addition to serving with his handler in over 30 local emergencies around Fairchild Air Force Base. This was the 3rd time he battled cancer over 10 short years. His service mates memorialized him on Thursday in a special ceremony, complete with a chaplain. His girlfriend, a Belgian Malinois working dog like him named Dakota, attended the service as well. RIP Lucky!

Article #2: In June 2005, Navy SEAL Marcus Luttrell (author of Lone Survivor) was the only survivor of his team after a firefight with Taliban forces in Afghanistan. DASY, a Labrador retriever named with his initials and the initials of the team he lost (Danny, Axe, Southern boy, and Yankee), was shot by men while outside her family home on April 1, 2009. Luttrell had received DASY as a gift after coming home from the war to help him cope with mental and physical injuries sustained while on tour. These men not only shot the dog, but returned to the scene to beat the poor dog with a bat and laughed as she died at their feet. Luttrell found his dog and the criminals where he exerted a hell of a lot of control by not shooting them all on the spot. I wold have. Instead, he chased them through 3 counties before the police finally caught up to them and arrested the men for cruelty to non-livestock animals. The man that beat the dog was found guilty in early December for his part in the crime. Another man plead guilty to shooting the dog. Sentencing is planned to happen in February and these men face up to two years in jail and a $10,000 fine. They should get so much more than two years... like a tattoo on their foreheads that read "I am a puppy killer" or something. This is one of those instances where I am happy that justice within the prisons is harsh. I imagine there are a lot of jaded, pissed off, and beefed up prisoners that miss their own dogs. RIP DASY!

I read a poem/story a long time ago that is for animals when they pass away. I'm fairly certain the author is unknown, though if not, please correct me and I'll update it.

Rainbow Bridge

Just this side of heaven is a place called Rainbow Bridge.

When an animal dies that has been especially close to someone here, that pet goes to Rainbow Bridge. There are meadows and hills for all of our special friends so they can run and play together. There is plenty of food, water and sunshine, and our friends are warm and comfortable.

All the animals who had been ill and old are restored to health and vigor; those who were hurt or maimed are made whole and strong again, just as we remember them in our dreams of days and times gone by. The animals are happy and content, except for one small thing; they each miss someone very special to them, who had to be left behind.

They all run and play together, but the day comes when one suddenly stops and looks into the distance. His bright eyes are intent; His eager body quivers. Suddenly he begins to run from the group, flying over the green grass, his legs carrying him faster and faster.

You have been spotted, and when you and your special friend finally meet, you cling together in joyous reunion, never to be parted again. The happy kisses rain upon your face; your hands again caress the beloved head, and you look once more into the trusting eyes of your pet, so long gone from your life but never absent from your heart.

Then you cross Rainbow Bridge together.

Author unknown.

RIP doggies.

I'm going to go cuddle Aurora and Sadie now.

Love is love, no matter the back story. <3 DS

Friday, January 06, 2012

Paintings Circa 2009

My dad found a couple of my paintings I made back in 2009. Check these out!


So these are painted on canvas with acrylic paint. I did the turtle first on a 9x13" panel. I did the 2nd one on two 9x13" panels. I am definitely not much of an artist. I found a cartoon turtle that I modified. It was a black and white image with little details. The dragon image was also a black and white picture; in addition I added the 2nd wing and its forelegs plus the colors. I've always been pretty proud of these paintings, even though I know they aren't that much of a feat. I certainly cannot do anything beyond reproducing/modifying cartoons. I definitely love it though!

Just wanted to share them with you since we found them today. I dropped my original "yay coffee" image in the bottom right corners, though I'm not even pretending that they work like a watermark. I just thought it was cute.

Love is love, no matter the back story. <3 DS

Friday Five: Things to Watch in 2012

So I thought that since it is a new year, I'd share my top 5 people and/or things to watch. I always make a list of things to keep up on for each year. This past year was politics, world events, DIY crafting, the job market, and my little sisters's grades. I did pretty good with all of those. Here is this year's list.

  1. All things indie and electronic! Indie publishing, e-book sales and publishing, the gravitation from print to digital, how the markets, contracts, and Houses are changing as writers and readers are changing... It is going to be an interesting year!
  2. 2012 Presidential Campaign. I'm disgusted with all the Republicans running for various reasons. I'm not 100% satisfied with Obama (His broken promises to encourage State support of gay rights in adoptions and family laws, to fully fund IDEA, and to expand FMLA to include victims of domestic violence or sexual assault irks me still. *sigh*) and worry about his chances at reelection.
  3. Social Media Influence and Legislation. With the popularity of Facebook and Twitter and the unveiling of G+, social networking media is on the rise. As more people take to digital networking, more issues are coming up, like cyber-bullying, Internet predation, social stalking, and more. With the high rate of nationalized child suicide over the past few years, this could spell out bad news for kids without some intervention from those higher in the food chain.
  4. Fantasy genre shows! My favored genre bloomed this past year. With Once Upon a Time on ABC, Grimm on NBC, Alphas on Syfy, and American Horror Story on FX, I have never in my life felt like I needed to watch television so bad. I hate television. Really, I do. But I have wore Hulu out, especially from August onward!
  5. Like last year, the grades my sisters bring home will be a focal point of my life. Homework, tests, and projects galore. With one in 3rd and another in 4th, its just going to get crazier over the next couple years.

So what are you watching over the next year? Anything specific? Let me know!

Love is love, no matter the back story. <3 DS

Thursday, January 05, 2012

Thursday Thought: Reinvention

As we march into 2012, the New Years "starting fresh" tropes are pretty well over done already. However, there is nothing wrong with reinventing your self in your own way. Some people use New Years Day as a starting point to bettering their lives. Good for them! Others wait around until New Years to "try" and then fail, only to put it off until the next New Years Day. Booo! It doesn't have to be the 1st of January to become a new, better you. Reinvent yourself every day. Do everything in your power to be a better person now because you are not guaranteed tomorrow. New Years Day 2013 is a very long ways away so don't wait. Here are some thoughts to keep in mind as you learn and grow with every breath you take.

I believe that one defines oneself by reinvention. To not be like your parents. To not be like your friends. To be yourself. To cut yourself out of stone.
Henry Rollins

The reinvention of daily life means marching off the edge of our maps.
Bob Black
To combine the two: Define yourself by detouring off the map. Catchy, no? :)

Love is love, no matter the back story. <3 DS

Wednesday, January 04, 2012

Wednesday Weird: Huffington Post's Top 11 of 2011

I found a nice little wrap up of Huffington Post's top 11 weird news stories of 2011. Check it here for full articles, pictures, and videos. Read after the jump for my own comments.

4000 Views Yay Statistics!

December was a great month for Dee Declares. I passed 4000 views overnight so its time for site statistics once again.

Views by month (numbers may be off by a few here or there):

  • June 259
  • July 495
  • August 654
  • September 566
  • October 535
  • November 486
  • December 910
  • January already over 100

Most popular page of all: Chloe Moretz Sunday Sale: almost 450 viewings alone!


  1. US
  2. Russia
  3. Germany

These updates are coming steadily faster. I made my first "views" post on June 25th and marveled over 200 visits. haha I made a 400 views post on July 6th, 600 views on July 23rd. I guess did not do a 1k views post (though I could have swore I wrote one o.0) The 2k post came October 2nd. 3k posted December 7th, though, I hit 3k a few days prior to that. That I already hit 4k in less than 30 days is amazing.

December was my busiest month to date, owed in part to my various families coming to see the pictures of my ornaments, holiday movies, and the Chloe Moretz post. This is working out to something like 22 visits per day on average, up a bit from the last post where it was 20 per day I think. To hit 4k so close to the beginning of the year... well that is just awesome. My blog started June 9th. That was 178 days ago. 4008/178 works out to 22.5. Not bad imho. :) 284 posts to date (not counting the 5 I already have scheduled/drafted/ready to post) and I've done a fairly decent job of  posting daily, responding to comments, and such.

Overall, I'm very happy with my blog. I love my daily posts. It keeps me interested without getting bored. I do need to start posting more about writing though, since this technically is an author platform blog. haha Yeah, I know... I'm so distracted. Can't help it. You don't even understand how many blog posts I started then scrapped over the last few days about the new puppies. I'm trying not to go overboard on the whole OMG PUPPIES!!!! soapbox. I'm thinking of starting a side blog up to talk about the critters. We'll see. I'll let you know if I do it on the small chance you are actually interested in the poochies, cats, and fish.

Have a great Wednesday everyone. I woke up thinking it was Monday since the kids went back to school today so Wednesday is already better since I found out I had the wrong days! Thanks for stopping by. You really are the highlight of my day.

Love is love, no matter the back story. <3 DS

Tuesday, January 03, 2012

Tuesday Treat: Peanut Butter Dog Treats

Since I got my new puppy, I decided to check out some homemade dog treats. Do you have a puppy? Check it out! They will love you for it! I made these yesterday and holy crow do our little girls love these.

1.5 cups whole wheat flour
1.5 cups white flour
1.5 cups peanut butter
1 cup water
2 tablespoons oil


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Combine oil, peanut butter, and water. Add flour one cup at a time to form a dough. Knead the dough into a firm ball and roll to 1/4 inch thickness.
  3. Cut into 3-4 inch pieces. Place the pieces onto an ungreased cookie sheet. Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes. Makes about 2.5 dozen cookies.
  • Use all natural or organic peanut butter to lower the salt and sugar amount and to avoid preservatives.
  • Make this ahead of time and freeze it to keep a fresh supply handy for your doggies.
  • As with all treats, feed in moderation. There is such a thing as too much of a good thing.

Love is love, no matter the back story. <3 DS

Monday, January 02, 2012

How I Rang in the New Year

Now that the 1st is done and over, I thought I'd share my eventful New Years Day. Normally, I wouldn't care but yesterday was interesting to say the least.

So... the ball dropped and 2012 rang in with gun shots right by our house! I understand that some people still like to ring in the new year with shooting a gun into the air. I am not against gun ownership, as I own one myself and renew a concealed carry permit every year. But, shooting a gun into the air is stupid. Even objects in motion (i.e. bullets) are subject to gravity. The damn things come down somewhere. So my father and I were outside walking the puppies when we heard at least two different kinds of guns shooting and stupid boys whooping in the cemetery next door. Dad decided to be nosy and try to spot the guys while I called the police.

Mind, I didn't call 911. I didn't know if anyone was in immediate danger so I prefer not to call the emergency line just to complain about idiotic people. So I told the dispatcher what was happening. After a minute or so, the guys noticed my Dad standing in the driveway staring into the cemetery. One of them got in his car and then pulled into our driveway to have a staring competition with my Dad. I mentioned that we are responsible gun owners right? Yeah, the guy left when he realized my Dad had a small arsenal of shotguns 3 feet behind him. Daddy is a hunter after all. The sheriff showed up just a couple minutes after the other car went the opposite direction.

Yeah, so I rang in the new year by calling the police. How redneck is that? haha I wish the police would have caught at least one of them. There are a lot of children in this neighborhood. I can name 8 kids that live in adjacent properties around my house, not counting my little sisters. Pure stupidity. Also, they woke up every dog for at least a mile radius who then barked for the next hour. Ugh. I woke up at 8am and the rest of the day was pretty uneventful. Just my 12am was crazy. I honestly planned to go to bed around 11:30 pm but was distracted by a puzzle. haha

How did you ring in the new year? Did you go out? Stay in? Go to bed before midnight?

Love is love, no matter the back story. <3 DS

Monday Machination: Thoughts on Plot

I found this website today, again about literature based plotting, with quotes from writers. Go here to see all 13 quotes.

I particularly like Stephen King's quote.
I distrust plot for two reasons: first, because our lives are largely plotless, even when you add in all our reasonable precautions and careful planning; and second, because I believe plotting and the spontaneity of real creation aren't compatible.

Sunday, January 01, 2012

Sunday Scene: Sex Drive Quips

One of my favorite movies, Sex Drive, came out in 2008 and stars one of my favorite actors, Clark Duke. I wrote a post about him a while back (here). Anyways, I can't find the full script but there are some awesome scenes. I had to re-watch the movie for a few of them (oh darn the luck) but here we are.

This movie is definitely not for children. Don't click the jump if you are not old enough to read explicit language/situations or are too squeamish.