Happy Leap Year Day! 7:01 p.m. 2004-02-29

Current Listening: The Ultimate Weight Solution: The 7 Keys to Weight Loss Freedom by Phil McGraw
Current Reading: Kitchen Confidential by Anthony Bourdain - just finished!
Recipes of the Day: Soul Food - in Honor of Black History Month!
Check out my Valentines

It's a lovely, long weekend for me and my fellow teachers - we have this Monday off, and Tuesday is a Teacher Work Day. Wednesday is what we call AEB (Afternoon Enrichment Block) Day - The eighth grade students go home at 12:30 and the seventh graders are supposed to stay for "enrichment activities". I passed on concocting one this time, because I just finished publishing the Cultural Diversity Newsletter single-handedly, and I have already sponsored activities earlier this year.

Yesterday, I spent some time helping motivate my husband to organize his office space. I also planned for the baby shower I am hostessing next weekend for my sister-in-law. My mother is co-hostessing, and she came over in the evening to help plan - and to put the sliding doors on the cupboard I bought last month.

Afterwards, we three went out to El Gaucho, an Argentinian/Uruguayan restaurant on Buford Highway. I had the shish kabobs this time, with mashed potatoes and flan for dessert. My husband had flank steak with an egg and flattened, fried plantains, served with rice. Mom had the Parilla Para Una - which is a mixed grill. She asked them to leave off the blood sausage and the tripes (wimp!), and had sausage, sweetbreads (I thought they were the best thing!), chicken breast, and ribs. She had this HUGE meringue-covered concoction of cake with peaches and dulce de leche in it. It was very good!

This morning, after I got up, I did a bit of web surfing. I spent a long time perusing the website and the blog of The Crafty Chica - aka Kathy Cano-Murillo - I also purchased one of her books, La Casa Loca: Latino Style Comes Home 45 Funky Craft Projects for Decorating & Entertaining. I will soon be buying her other book Making Shadow Boxes and Shrines.

I found directions for all sorts of craft projects! I also raided Value Village today after a visit to my old side of town to walk my doggy at the polo fields (and to eat sushi at RuSan!). I purchased some books and things as gifts to my niece and nephews, a fleur-de-lis photo clip holder, some silver and gold frames, and many old lunch boxes - some large from and Einstein Brothers promotion, and two smaller ones. But the most intriguing thing I bought was an old small dollhouse, which I hope to paper mache over and make an altar out of. It was fun!

As I made my way around town back home, I stopped at Jake's Ice Cream and tried their new flavor (at least, new to me) - Be Twixt - it's caramel ice cream with Twix bars in it. Yummy! I bought a pint of Kenya AA for my husband.

As you can see, I haven't quite started my Dr. Phil program, but I did listen to his CD as I wended my way from Norcross through Roswell and Marietta, down through Vinings and the Westside, and then shot back up I-85 to go back home!

Okay, tonight is Oscar night - I don't know how much I will watch. I did read an amusing article in Creative Loafing: Oscar the Souse: Party down with CL's second annual Oscar Drinking Game - but I don't think I will get loaded! I suffer too much in the morning! Although I haven't seen all of the movies this year, I lifted this list off of the Crafty Chica's Blog. Let me see if I get anything right! I am not very objective, and will probably just put down who I hope will win!

Oscar predictions

ACTOR IN A LEADING ROLE:
Johnny Depp - PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN: THE CURSE OF THE BLACK PEARL


Ben Kingsley - HOUSE OF SAND AND FOG
Jude Law - COLD MOUNTAIN
Bill Murray - LOST IN TRANSLATION
Sean Penn - MYSTIC RIVER

ACTOR IN A SUPPORTING ROLE:
Alec Baldwin - THE COOLER
Benicio Del Toro - 21 GRAMS
Djimon Hounsou - IN AMERICA
Tim Robbins - MYSTIC RIVER
Ken Watanabe - THE LAST SAMURAI - it's the only one I've seen of this category!

ACTRESS IN A LEADING ROLE:
Keisha Castle-Hughes - WHALE RIDER
Diane Keaton - SOMETHING'S GOTTA GIVE
Samantha Morton - IN AMERICA
Charlize Theron - MONSTER - haven't seen it, but she deserves something for putting on weight and taking off makeup!
Naomi Watts - 21 GRAMS

ACTRESS IN A SUPPORTING ROLE:
Shohreh Aghdashloo - HOUSE OF SAND AND FOG
Patricia Clarkson - PIECES OF APRIL
Marcia Gay Harden - MYSTIC RIVER
Holly Hunter - THIRTEEN
Renée Zellweger - COLD MOUNTAIN

BEST PICTURE:
THE LORD OF THE RINGS: THE RETURN OF THE KING
LOST IN TRANSLATION
MASTER AND COMMANDER: THE FAR SIDE OF THE WORLD
MYSTIC RIVER
SEABISCUIT - I love the horse stories!

ANIMATED FEATURE FILM:
BROTHER BEAR
FINDING NEMO
THE TRIPLETS OF BELLEVILLE - That's a toughie I loved Nemo, but Tripletts was very different!

DIRECTING:
CITY OF GOD
THE LORD OF THE RINGS: THE RETURN OF THE KING
LOST IN TRANSLATION
MASTER AND COMMANDER: THE FAR SIDE OF THE WORLD
MYSTIC RIVER

MUSIC (SONG):
"Belleville Rendez-vous" - THE TRIPLETS OF BELLEVILLE
"Into the West" - THE LORD OF THE RINGS: THE RETURN OF THE KING
"A Kiss at the End of the Rainbow" - A MIGHTY WIND
"Scarlet Tide" - COLD MOUNTAIN
"You Will Be My Ain True Love" - COLD MOUNTAIN

I think that's all I care (or know anything!) about!

By the way, Happy Leap Year Day!

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