Sunday, October 31, 2010

Halloweenish Television

I decided to honor Halloween by sharing some of my all-time favorite scary TV shows with all of you.  While most of these shows are classics, we have a few "newer" entries on the list as well. I know many of you will have never heard of a couple of these, but they are well worth "digging up" to watch.  I remember staying up late on weekends to get a good fright with my best friend.  Some of these oldies but goodies still give me goosebumps today!

Now, turn on all the lights in the house and be sure to have someone handy to grab ahold of as we delve into some of television's spookiest offerings..

The Twilight Zone "Nightmare at 20,000 Feet"

This episode has stuck with me since I was a kid, especially when I had to fly one night during a storm with lightning crackling all around us.  I had my own little "nightmare at 20,000 feet!"

William Shatner played Bob Wilson, a salesman who sees a gremlin on the wing of the plane he's flying in.  No one else sees it or believes him.  Bob's wife is beginning to think that Bob is having another nervous breakdown.  Bob grabs a gun from a cop on the plane and pops the emergency exit door open and shoots the gremlin, almost getting sucked to his own death.  After the plane lands, Bob is hauled back to the sanitarium but the camera pans to the engine of the plane, showing the damage the gremlin did before they landed. 

This gave me the willies big time.  Though this first episode aired in the early 60s, they did a remake in 1983 for the Twilight Zone movie with John Lithgow playing Bob Wilson.  Both versions were quite creepy.

Buffy the Vampire Slayer "Hush"

This was probably the freakiest episode of Buffy and is probably tied with the episode above for my favorite in this list.  I love this show, but I didn't really think of this series as necessarily scary, but it had its moments.  "Hush" from the 4th season is at the top of my Buffy list for the spine-tingling "ooh factor".  Imagine the lyrics below in a sweet little girl's voice:

Can't even shout, can't even cry,
The gentlemen are coming by.
Looking in windows, knocking on doors.
They need to take seven and they might take yours.
Can't call to mom, can't say a word.
You're gonna die screaming but you won't be heard.

"Hush" was one of Joss Whedon's (I am in awe of this man) masterpieces of terror.  The "Gentlemen" come in at night and steal the voices of the sleeping residents of Sunnyvale.  They are demons intent on taking seven of their victims' hearts.  The entire episode is done without ANY dialogue!  I think that just made it even freakier, those being preyed upon couldn't even scream...ugh..

The Gentlemen
The X-Files "Home"

This ultra-creepy episode aired at the beginning of the fourth season of this blockbuster series.  It was especially freaky because it was one of those shows that could possibly happen instead of just being pure sci-fi.  The premise is that a backwoods family named the Peacocks has been producing children with birth defects due to inbreeding and incest.  Murder, mayhem, and just plain scary people are the basis of this episode. 

The Peacocks bury one of their children
Tales From the Crypt "And All Through the House"

Directed by the amazing Robert Zemeckis and airing in 1989, this was a remake of the segment in the 1972 movie starring Joan Collins.  A woman kills her husband out of greed and is then rewarded by a visit from a slightly psychotic Santa who just happens to be an escapee from the sanitarium.  Merry Christmas and Happy Halloween..

And in the Honorable Mention category we have:

Alfred Hitchcock Presents (he will always be the master)
Twin Peaks (creepy night-time soap)
Fear Factor (just disgustingly gross)
Tales From the Dark Side (the title says it all)
Outer Limits (Rod Serling was a genius of the absurd)
Supernatural (how could a gal NOT want to follow these two brothers)

I hope you've enjoyed my list of TV's finest fright fests and will share any nominees you might have with all of us. 

Saturday, October 23, 2010

I Fell Off the Wagon

Well, I didn't quite make it to the end of the month!  I failed to blog every day here at MoonCat Farms for Blogtoberfest.  Ah well, I'll try to do better.  In my defense, I've been hecka busy riding my horse and working on this overly cluttered house (1st thing fun, 2nd thing yuck).  We ended up having our yard sale last weekend and I'm still trying to figure out what things are going to the hospice thrift store.  They were so wonderful to Mom and us that I wanted to do what we could to help their organization.

I hadn't planned on blogging yesterday anyway as it would have been Mom's 73rd birthday.  It is still unreal that she's not here with us, I miss her terribly.  I have good days and bad days.  The weird thing is that it is the little, seemingly insignificant things that get me.  Silly things such as wanting to gossip with her about the latest episode of "All My Children" or telling her about the newest trick the chickens have learned.  It's tough, but I take comfort in the fact that she is no longer in pain.

We have a full weekend ahead of us as we're participating in a cattle sorting today and we have Mr. MoonCat's folks here visiting.  If we get done in time, we're hoping to meet my best friend and her family for dinner and then watch her oldest play football tonight.  He's one of the stars of the teams, playing offense AND defense!

Tomorrow we're having brunch with Dad, Cindy & Chris joining the four of us.  I will be testing several recipes from a great new cookbook I was sent to review on my other blog.  Yummy!

Enjoy your weekend my friends.

Monday, October 18, 2010

My Movie Kick

I have been on a movie kick lately.  Usually it's Mr. MoonCat who is the one who can watch a movie or two a day.  We don't get cable out here in the boondocks and have a whopping 6 channels on free TV.  So our solution is Netflix or Redbox (especially since our video rental stores have ALL went under).

I tend to find all sorts of obscure and foreign films to check out when I'm browsing their  online sites.  My latest gem was the British film Twelfth Night.  Yes, as in Shakespeare!  It was hilarious and I loved it!  Helena Bonham Carter is one of my favorite "oddball" actresses and Sir Ben Kingsley is such a fantastic surprise in this movie, especially when he sings! The man has a wonderful voice.  A very enjoyable film.

Twelfth Night

So have you watched any really good movies lately?

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Sunday Selections

I'm only a cat,

and I stay in my place...

Up there on your chair,

on your bed or your face!
I'm only a cat,

and I don't finick much...

I'm happy with cream

and anchovies and such!

I'm only a cat,

and we'll get along fine...

As long as you know

I'm not yours... you're all mine!

~ author unknown

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Saturday Sweetness - Rum Balls

Yummy treat for the upcoming holidays..

This is a recipe from the ultra-amazing Emeril Lagasse for Food Network.  I've had it for several years and it is always a big hit.  Check it out..

  • 1 1/2 cups confectioners' sugar

  • 2 tablespoons cocoa powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1/2 cup dark rum
  • 2 tablespoons light corn syrup
  • 2 1/2 cups finely crushed vanilla wafers
  • 1 cup finely chopped, toasted walnuts

In large bowl, sift 1 cup of the confectioners' sugar, cocoa powder and allspice. Stir in rum and corn syrup. Stir in vanilla wafers and walnuts, mix well. Place in refrigerator to firm up slightly, about 30 minutes. (The mixture may appear crumbly and dry; this is O.K.)

Place remaining 1/2 cup confectioners' sugar in a shallow bowl.

Using a tablespoon, scoop out portions of the chocolate mixture and press into 1-inch balls. Using your hands, roll the balls in the confectioners' sugar, coating evenly.

Place on a baking sheet, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks, placing waxed paper between the layers to prevent sticking.

Friday, October 15, 2010

Half Way There!

I've made it to the half-way mark in my posting for October.  Blogtoberfest is keeping us all hopping coming up with new posts.  It wasn't quite as hard last year as I was only worried about blogging here at the Meanderings.  With the addition of One Book Shy, it's a stretch some days.  Hopefully, you'll all stay with me as I try to complete this challenge on both blogs this year.  Happy Blogtoberfest!

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Contest Alert

Don't miss out on the


Enter for a chance to win a

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

What I See Wednesday

I have a new beau.  His name is Bo. He is very shy, but he still serenades me every day.  He loves it when I give him a shower in the morning.  Mr. MoonCat knows about him and approves of our relationship, he's not green at all about my new guy.  Of course, my new guy IS green...  Meet Bo-Frog, my new Boyfriend..

Bo singing to me
This little cutie lives in a pot of lavender on our front porch.  I first discovered him last week when I was watering the plants.  This little froggy voice piped up and was singing away.  He sits in the same spot every morning and evening and serenades us with his song.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

And They're the Races

Mr. MoonCat has led a deprived existence.  He had never been to a horse race, until yesterday that is...

The Big Fresno Fair is winding up this coming weekend and Pops decided that my hubby HAD to experience the races before they are done!  We ended up spending the afternoon at the track and had a ball.  (We never did get to go inside the fairgrounds, it was unbelievably packed for a Monday and it was pretty warm.)

Mr. MoonCat and another friend who went with us to celebrate his big 19th birthday both had extremely good beginner's luck.  On the very first race they each won $50!  On mule racing to boot!  It was so much fun going with the two of them and my dad.  We all had a lot of laughs and grimaces throughout the day.  I was thrilled that on the very last race, my two long(er)-shots came in together and I won $56.00!  On a $2 bet, that's pretty cool..

Monday, October 11, 2010

A Glorious Day

Mr. MoonCat and I ran away once again to the Sierra Foothills for a day filled with fabulous food, great music, and lots of greenery.

It was time again for the annual Harvest Arts and Peace Festival at the Intermountain Nursery.  If you recall, we went up there last year and had a wonderful time.  I had a fantabulous Portabella Mushroom Steak sandwich and hubby ate some luscious-smelling Greek food (couldn't tell you what it was..)

We saw many neat booths and sights:

Listened to some great music by Poor Man's Poison:

And made some purchases of our own:

Isn't this Garlic Keeper neat?
Hand-blown glass cabochon

Spooky gourd ghost - HIS

Basketball-sized Magician cat gourd - MINE

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Sunday Selections

Love is a flower that grows in any soil, works its sweet miracles undaunted by autumn frost or winter snow, blooming fair and fragrant all the year, and blessing those who give and those who receive.

~Louisa May Alcott

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Saturday Sweetness - Hot Pepper Jelly

Many people have never even heard of pepper jellies!  I discovered them many moons ago when I was a night manager for a local Hickory Farms.  Pepper jelly is one of my ultimate favorites and I made my own for the first time this year.  Yummmm, a little dab of jelly on top of a cracker with cream cheese is fantabulous.

Hot Pepper Wine Jelly
  • 1/2 cup red bell pepper, minced & seeded
  • 2 tbsp jalapeno pepper, minced & seeded
  • 3 hot chili peppers, dried & chopped
  • 1 1/2 cup sweet white wine (I used Moscato)
  • 3 tbsp lemon juice
  • 3 1/2 cups sugar
  • 3 oz liquid pectin (1 pouch)
Have canner, jars and lids clean and prepared.  In a large stainless steel pan, mix peppers, wine and lemon juice.  Add sugar.  Bring to a full boil over high heat.  When the boil can't be stirred down, add the pectin.  Boil hard again, constantly for 2 minutes.  Remove from heat and skim off foam if necessary. 

Quickly pour the hot jelly into the hot jars allowing for about 1/4" headspace.  Be sure to wipe any residue off the rims before placing the lids on the jar.  Adjust the band until finger tight.

Place jars in the canner, be sure they're covered completely by water.  Process at a boil for 10 minutes.  Turn off heat and allow to sit for 5 minutes with the lid off of the canner.  Remove and allow jars to cool.

Makes about 7 4-oz jars of jelly.


Friday, October 8, 2010

Halloween Costumes

Mr. MoonCat and I love Halloween.  We have fun dressing up and goofing off.  We're not really sure if we're going to get to participate this year as we're having a Celebration of Life in honor of my Mom on the day we were planning our Halloween party. 

So anyway, these are similar to what we're planning for our costumes.  We're making our own, but our inspirations come from the photos below:

Mother Nature or Earth Goddess

The BAD Hatter - evil twin to the Mad Hatter

So what are you dressing up as this Halloween?

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Our Newest Residents

I did manage to get a few photos off my flash card.  These are the two newest members of the family:

This is the pipsqueak, aka Pippi.  I have to admit right up front that I have always been a big dog fan.  Noisy ankle-biters have never been my thing.  Until now I guess.  Little Miss Thing showed up at our place a few days before Mom passed away.  Someone had apparently dumped her off out in the country and she found her way to us.  I didn't want another dog and tried really hard to not become attached to her while we found a home for her.  Since this is a smart little cookie, she sidled up to Mom and took to sitting in her lap.  Mom declared "This puppy is already home."  End of story.  Pippi is now the resident princess/tyrant here at MoonCat Farms. She terrorizes the poor cats and occasionally gets walloped by one or two of them.

Small, Medium, and Large
On a sucky and sad note, we lost Mom's old dog Xena last week.  We figured she was at least 14 years old and hadn't been well for a while.  Personally I think she'd been holding out for Mom.  We sure miss them both terribly.  (This is the only photo I could find of Xena around here.  She used to hide when she saw the camera ~ I'm thinking she was of that belief that a camera could steal your soul.)

RIP Xena Warrior Princess
As promised, here is another photo of the hubby's new horse, Swifty.  Both he and the hubby were not pleased with having to stand for a picture.  They had just come back from a trail ride and were anxious for some refreshment.  Swifty craved some crunchy grains and Mr. MoonCat was craving some liquefied grains (beer).  They are quite the pair already.
Swifty & Mr. MoonCat

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

What I Can't See on Wednesday

I usually like to share photos of what I see around here and out at the ranch.  Well, I did take a bunch of pictures to show you.  I just can't get them off of the card on onto the computer!  I have to go get a new card reader today.  My old one finally bit it and of course, I can't find the cord to connect the camera.  Ah well....

I thought I'd share a quote with you from a movie I saw earlier today "Post Grad".  It really stuck with me.  Michael Keaton plays Alexis Bledel's father in the movie and tells her

 "What you do with your life is only half of it, the other fifty percent is who you do it with."

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

A Yard Sale and Redecoration

Mr. MoonCat and I are planning on having a really big yard sale next month.  We have amassed a very, very large amount of old hand-me-down furniture and, let's face it ~ junk!  It is amazing how much stuff we have both carted around in our "before the MoonCats met" phases of our life.  We have been sorting and tossing things like crazy.

We've been discussing various things we would like to get for the house once we purge ourselves of the clutter.  I mentioned to him that I haven't had new nightstands since I was about 7 years old.  Yes, SEVEN!  I still have one of the dressers from our childhood set as well.  So he agrees that our bedroom could use an update and some new grown-up furniture!

I immediately started checking out what my favorite online retailer CSN Stores had to offer.  I found some that would be perfect for our bedroom's decor:

 but I also found the perfect solution to several problems when I saw this:

Isn't this a great idea?  It would have room for all of my bedside clutter and books and be a perfect piece of furniture for the furfaces.  Especially for the animals who want a hidey-hole when they sleep.  They are also very popular for hiding the cat's litter box.  I'm seeing a lot of possibilities here.  What do you think?

Monday, October 4, 2010

Out of Kontrol

What happens when you combine a Renaissance Faire, four crazy talented guys with too much time on their hands, and a hot sultry day?  You get:

I was first introduced to these guys about five years ago when I worked with Mr. MoonCat (then just Mr. Maybe) at a Reniassance Faire.  He wanted me to watch his friends' act. 

Dusty, Bogus, & RJ

I was hooked after watching these clowns perform their amazing antics.  They are outstanding jugglers and comedians, plus just all-around fun guys.  The stands - or haybales today, are always packed when these guys take the stage.   

Dusty with "Sara"

One of the funniest things to happen was in the last performance of the day.  Part of their act includes Dusty finding a willing volunteer - female and cute of course, from the audience.  Normally the young ladies throw themselves at the guys to have a chance to be up on stage with them.  Um, not today.. Poor Dusty got shot down twice by two of them before he just gave up and came on stage with "Sara". 

It was hysterical!  RJ didn't do very well at keeping his composure when he was introduced to the volunteer, but he did great job with the spiel that they normally use as he gave "Sara" the same instructions he would a living, breathing non-straw bale woman.  Of course, Dusty and Tommy had their work cut out for them making sure "Sara" turned and ducked when necessary during the act. 


"Sara" and the Boys
If you ever get a chance to watch these guys at a Renissance Faire or any of the many places they perform, don't miss out.  They are guaranteed to make you laugh, with them or definitely at them!

Bogus, Tommy, RJ, and Dusty in the Finale.


Sunday, October 3, 2010

Sunday Selections

Fall, leaves, fall; die, flowers, away;
Lengthen night and shorten day;
Every leaf speaks bliss to me
Fluttering from the autumn tree.
I shall smile when wreaths of snow
Blossom where the rose should grow;
I shall sing when night's decay
Ushers in a drearier day.

~ Emily Bronte

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Old Movies and Comfort Food

So what do you do when you're feeling a bit blue?  Do you exercise, pig out, shop, talk on the phone?  I tend to hole up at home.  If I'm not reading a book, I'll put in a DVD. And of course, pig out..

Last night was no exception.  Mr. MoonCat had to work late and I was puttering around the house by myself with the critters.  So I put in a movie that always cheers me up (and one that the hubby doesn't like to watch).  Donovan's Reef is from 1963.  It stars John Wayne, Lee Marvin, Cesar Romero, and Jack Warden among others.  It is such a departure from John Wayne's cowboy, soldier and swagger roles.  That is probably why it is one of my favorites of his movies. 

Another factor that came into play for me last night was that the movie was filmed in Kauai, Hawaii.  That was one of my Mom's favorite places that she'd ever been.  Several years ago she was able to go over there for about 10 days.  It was one of her fondest memories and favorite trips of her life.

So anyway I ended up eating pizza while watching this great old, nostalgic movie.  Cheered me up immensely!  Comfort food for the soul and belly..

Friday, October 1, 2010

Blogtoberfest 2010

It's baaaack.....

For those of you who weren't with us last year, Blogtoberfest is a worldwide event in which bloggers commit to doing a blog post each day of October.  I was so proud of myself last year for completing the challenge.  I had been in a real slump prior to Blogtoberfest and it really egged me on to sit down and write!

Blogtoberfest is the brainchild of tinniegirl along with her partner in crime, CurlyPops.  These talented ladies keep everyone motivated and do a great job of organizing this fun and productive festival.  It is such a great way to discover new blogs and did I mention, there are GIVEAWAYS??  (Yes, we all know that I am a giveaway junkie ~ cuz, they're fun.)

Anyway, since it is still October 1st, you can still jump on the bandwagon and play along with the rest of us.  Just click on the button above or on either of their blog links.  CurlyPops keeps a running list of giveaways on her page while tinniegirl tracks the participants.

Join in the fun and in the Nascar spirit:   "Bloggers, start your posts!"

~I'll list my giveaway in a later post.  Haven't decided what I want to put up for grabs.