Adjusting to parenthood is not easy. But it’s wonderful. Really. I’m totally in love. How could one not be? Just look at these feet… toe curls!
However, if I thought time moved fast before the baby was born, I was sadly mistaken. The past six weeks have FLOWN by (yet have been the longest six weeks of my life). Every time I turn around, the day is gone and I’ve accomplished nothing besides feeding and entertaining the baby… with the occasional completion of a load of laundry. Heck, I’m lucky if I take a shower. Correction—my guy is lucky if I take a shower. Hahahaha.
If we didn’t have pre-prepared foods right now, my guy and I might starve half the time. After all, feeding the baby comes first… right?
So in order to ensure we had meals in the house that didn’t require a lot of time out of my day, I found some freezer meals via Pinterest to check out. That, and our fabulous friends and family have kept us well fed… (thanks, everyone!!).
But for the sake of today’s post (and a few future posts), I’m focusing on the frozen meals.
Today – pot roast.
What’s a freezer meal?
A meal that is prepped and frozen prior to cooking all day in the crock pot. Pretty simple, right?
Well, without a doubt, they are lifesavers! Since the baby, I barely have enough time to brush my teeth on some days, let alone stand in the kitchen and cut vegetables for a nice and healthy dinner. So after seeing some freezer meals on Pinterest, I thought it surely wouldn’t hurt to give them a try—and my guy agreed.
First, the supplies:
Large Freezer Bags (gallon)
Marker (permanent wouldn’t hurt)
Vacuum Seal (not necessary, but definitely an added bonus. We LOVE ours and use it all the time)
Next, the ingredients:
1 Eye of Round Roast
1 Packet of Dry Pot Roast Seasoning
1 Bag of Mini Carrots (I LIVED on these things during my pregnancy…)
4-5 (Russet) Potatoes, Peeled and Chopped
1 Onion, Quartered/Chopped in Chunks
Before we begin:
Write the name of the dish and all of the ingredients on the freezer bag/s in permanent marker. Include the cooking instructions. Don’t assume you will remember later on. We may *think* we’ll remember later, but probably not.
Wash and dry the carrots. Peel and chop the potatoes. Cut the onion.
And finally, bag the food. If necessary, use two separate freezer bags… one for the veggies and one for the roast. I sprinkled the dry roast seasoning all over the veggies, but you can also add later when you are ready to cook.
Thaw the roast and veggies overnight in the fridge. The next day, dump the roast and veggies in the crock pot (I love crock pot dishes!!). Fill the crock pot about ½ way with water. If you didn’t already sprinkle the dry roast seasoning over the veggies before freezing, do so now.
Cook on high for 4-6 hours.
But is it any good?
We thought so! Only next time, we’re adding chunks of chopped celery. We both agreed that would make the dinner taste even better!
What do you think? Is this recipe worth a try? I’d love to hear from you!
Adjusting to life as a new mom is not easy, although wonderful. However, regardless of the joy, I still have the need to get back to some sort of normalcy. Therefore, I have decided it’s time to throw out another new blog post. Well, kind of a new post… today’s post is a rerun from last summer with updated information. So if you are still wondering whether or not ABC’s Motive is worth a watch, this post is for you!
Television is full of crime dramas and police procedurals today, but most of these shows focus on the investigation and capture of the suspects rather than the motive behind the act. Some TV programs might answer the “why” in a brief one or two lines of dialogue after they’ve interrogated the suspect for a few minutes, but they don’t really spend a lot of time on the motive.
ABC’s crime drama, Motive, changes all of that.
The series, now in its second season, follows Detective Angie Flynn (Kristin Lehman, Judging Amy and The Killing) and her partner (Louis Ferreira, SGU Stargate Universe) as they work homicide cases.
Wait a minute… that sounds just like every other police procedural on TV today. Right?
Wrong. Motive identifies the killer and victim at the beginning of each episode before we even see the crime scene. Now that’s unique… and I absolutely love the format!
For the most part, Motiveis like all the other police procedurals out there… the detectives inherit a case and work the scene from the ground up, looking primarily for the “who” and the “why.” But with ABC’s drama (actually, Motive is a Canadian TV series that has been picked up by ABC the past two summers…), viewers get to see the “who” and “why” before anything else. The show flashes back throughout the entire hour, telling us the stories of both the killer and the victim, and very little about the detectives and their personal lives.
That’s right. Motive is more about the crimes than it is the stars of the show. Having missed the pilot last year, I wasn’t even aware that Flynn was a single mother until about the fourth episode. And even then, the series barely touched on that relationship… but there was enough to give the no-nonsense detective a heart (I’m not saying she’s callous, it’s just that she’s not on the job to make friends).
Motive kind of reminds me of a combination of Cold Case (because of the series of flashbacks) and the short-lived series The Whole Truth, where viewers experienced the crime through both the prosecutor’s and the defense attorney’s point of view and they had to decide which one was the truth… fun show, but it didn’t last long.
And by the way, the crime drama also stars: Lauren Holly (NCIS) as Betty Rogers, the medical examiner; Brendan Penny (Stargate: Atlantis) as rookie detective Brian Lucas; and Warren Christie (Alphas) as the new boss, Sergeant Mark Cross.
So what’s the verdict? Motive is different enough from the other police procedurals on TV. I’ll give it at least that. But do I like it more than all the others? Not really. But kinda.
That’s right; I’m torn. I do really like how the series focuses more on the crime (and the killer and victim) than the cops themselves. And I am REALLY glad ABC picked up the second season. However, watching police procedurals is like standing on the chip aisle at the local grocery. There are so many different brands and flavors to choose from, each bag with its own unique twist, that we only have time to grab a few here and there each time or our grocery basket would be nothing but chips. For that, Motive earns the JFTV rating.
Luckily for this one, it airs during the summer and doesn’t have a whole lot of competition. But the more I watch, the more I think it could hold its own with other police procedurals during the regular fall to spring television schedule. And I already find myself hoping for a third season…
Bottom line? Motive is my favorite summer crime drama (on the basic network TV channels).
I’ve been quiet here lately, but for good reason (if you ask me)…. I had a baby!
I am trying to slowly get back into the swing of things, despite all of these new and very important tasks filling my days and nights, and have decided it’s time to throw out a new blog post. Well, kind of a new post… today’s post is a rerun from last summer with updated information. So if you are still wondering about ABC’s Mistresses, this post is for you!
Based on the popular British television series of the same name, Mistresses is a sexy drama following the lives of four girlfriends as they discover who they really are via their friendships, relationships, and sex.
Sound familiar? I’m thinking of one of my favorites here… Sex and the City.
The series stars: Alyssa Milano (Charmed) as Savannah “Savi” Davis, who is learning to cope with loss and starting over in both her personal and professional life; Jes Macallan as Josslyn Carver, Savi’s single and carefree younger sister, who has recently launched a brand new career; Rochelle Aytes (Detroit 1-8-7 and The Forgotten) as April Malloy, a single mother, who owns her own boutique shop; and Junjin Kim (Lost) as Karen Kim, a formerly successful therapist, whose practice fell apart following an affair with one of her patients… and his son.
All four women are beautiful; they’re all successful; and they’ve all got issues. Serious issues.
The series began last year with hot and steamy sex… for network TV. Viewers watched Savi and her husband “role playing” during their attempts to make a baby. We also first met Joss while she was having a little “afternoon delight” with her then boss. And let’s not forget about the flashback sex scenes between Karen and her patient. In season one, April was the only one not sweating between the sheets—but things certainly do change in season two.
There for a while, it appeared prime time soap operas were a thing of the past. Mistresses, however, definitely brings the drama and the sexy back to television…
First, let’s meet the girls.
When Savi and her husband (Harry) learned of their fertility issues last season, he pushed her away as he blamed and punished himself for having abnormal sperm. This catapulted Savi into the arms of her coworker (Dominick) and they had one night of hot, steamy sex. And guess what? She discovered she was pregnant…she didn’t know who the father was… she came clean to Harry, ruining their marriage… and the season ended just as her car was smashed by another in a highway accident. Sadly, Savi lost her baby and her husband. But she also found a light at the end of the tunnel—Dom. Who cares if he’s now her boss?
Meanwhile, as if sleeping with her dying (now dead) patient wasn’t a big enough issue for Karen, the patient’s family couldn’t seem to stop themselves from leaning on her. His wife didn’t appear to have a clue about the affair (at first), but his son knew there was another woman and he wanted answers… from Karen. One thing led to another… she slept with the son… the wife tried to kill her… her partner reported her to the board and she lost her license to practice… a total downward spiral. Now she’s back, working at the Emergency Room and with one patient in a brand new solo-practice. Karen’s life seems to be back on track. But is it?
Then there’s April… poor April. Last season, she had a hard time letting go of her dead husband, so much so that she believed that a few prank calls she had received were actually his ghost telling her to not move on. But it turns out those calls weren’t from her husband, they were from her husband’s mistress and their illegitimate son. As if that wasn’t enough to deal with, the woman wanted money… after all, her son was entitled to some of the inheritance April’s daughter received from the insurance company—right? Next, April’s supposedly dead ex showed up on her front doorstep. That’s right; he faked his own death. It took her a while, but she finally kicked them both to the curb, somehow managing to keep all of this from her adolescent daughter. Now, April is on the rebound…
And last but not least, we have Joss… we discovered early on that she had climbed her way to the top of her realty company by sleeping with her boss. But he left and her new boss wasn’t falling for any of her tricks (at first). Work didn’t seem to be what she was best at, but she surprisingly got her act together. Now, Joss has left realty for a career in event planning. And somehow, she has found herself as the voice of reason when it comes to her sister, ex-brother-in-law/business partner, and her friends. I’m just waiting for the old Joss to return…
Now, let’s talk about the title for a minute.
According to Webster, a mistress is a woman who is the head of a household, country, or state… or a woman with whom a man is having a prolonged affair with.
Let’s focus on the latter.
Not only do I watch a lot of television programs, but I also enjoy a good talk show here and there. Especially when the guests are stars I like. Alyssa Milano stated in at least two TV interviews that I watched that the girls, her character included, are not all mistresses. Not by the definition we are most familiar with anyway. She included the show is in no way glorifying mistresses or situations that tend to break up marriages and relationships… (even if it does seem to us, the TV audience, that each woman is connected to a traditional mistress in one way or another—it’s true; I know people who stopped watching the program for this very reason very early on in season one).
Ms. Milano also stated in an interview that while this program is based on the BBC series, the writers took an entire season of the British version and wrapped up the storyline in one episode… I’m assuming that was the pilot… and that this series is all its own.
I went into Mistresses not expecting to like it. For one, I’m a big Sex and the City fan and initially felt this series was trying to cash in on Carrie’s and the girls’ success. But because I’m an Alyssa Milano fan (I watched Who’s the Boss? as a little girl and LOVED Charmed more than words can say), I knew I’d give it a shot.
And after season one, it turned into my new summer guilty pleasure… I was thrilled when ABC gave the show a renewal.
Mistresses earns the JFTV rating. It’s definitely not good for us, but I couldn’t stop at just one episode. Heck, I couldn’t stop at just one season. And despite having difficulty finding a lot of time to watch (and pay attention to) my television series right now with the new addition to our family, I am all caught up on this one.
Do you watch Mistresses? I’d love to hear from you!
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Years ago, May sweeps meant that the television industry saved the best for last. The networks broadcast non-stop, action packed, cliff-hanging storylines every night of the week, hoping to pull in the largest ratings of the year before announcing which shows would receive pink slips.
And while this still rings true for some series, times have changed (for the most part). Today’s May sweeps ultimately means knowing which shows will return and which shows will be swept away before the season finales have all aired.
Recent years prove that no show is safe: many shows are done after only one season; some shows make it through the toddler years, a minimum of two or three seasons; some programs have aired for years, even decades with multi-generational loyal followers; and, sadly, some still await their destiny.
2014 is no different and television’s broom was very busy AGAIN this year….
One & Done
Almost Human, The Assets, Back in the Game, Bad Teacher, Believe, Betrayal, The Crazy Ones, Crisis, Dads, Dracula, Enlisted, Friends with Better Lives, Growing Up Fisher, Hostages, Intelligence, Ironside, Killer Women, Lucky 7, The Michael J. Fox Show, Mind Games, Mixology, Once Upon a Time in Wonderland, Rake, Sean Saves the World, Star-Crossed, Super Fun Night, Surviving Jack, The Tomorrow People, Trophy Wife, We Are Men, and Welcome to the Family
Goodness! Is anything left on TV? Of all of these, the one that stings the most is Killer Women. But then again, nothing new on ABC really had a chance this year. I do believe they’re guilty of the most cancellations of any other channel.
Terrible Twos & Threes
The Carrie Diaries, The Neighbors, Revolution, and Suburgatory
No real loss here as far as I’m concerned…
Community, How I Met Your Mother, Nikita, Psych, and Raising Hope
Losing Psych really burns. Burns. Burns. Burns. But at least they closed out the series beautifully. And have left me with high hopes there will be a movie!
Barely Escaping with their Lives
The Mentalist – whew! If you are anything like us, we were actually pulling for The Mentalist to be renewed. There was just something about this revamped season post-Red John that refreshed the series. A part of me wasn’t all that worried, considering rumors swirled stating a cable channel might pick it up if CBS had dropped the ax on it… but they didn’t, so it doesn’t really matter.
But back to rumors… I have heard that this next season will be the last; however, I can’t find anything to back that up. So who knows? I do appreciate when a network gives a show the head’s up, providing the writers and creators a chance to tie everything up with a pretty red bow.
And speaking of that pretty red bow… not all chivalry is dead—some shows have earned advance notice that next season will be their last. Thank you networks; thank you for allowing the writers to close out a series appropriately for the loyal fans. This doesn’t happen all that often, just ask Law & Order.
White Collar – At least we will get six episodes that reveal how Peter is going to save Neal and how this criminal turned do-gooder and Fed will live happily ever after.
And probably an even bigger one for my family…
Justified – I don’t even want to think about this one. Much like I tried to ignore the fact Psych was ending this year. I understand the creators wanting to wrap this up, with Mr. Elmore Leonard’s passing and all. But what will I do without Raylan and Boyd?
Boyd and Raylan?
Next year’s final season will be rough. However, the season finale this year did give us a glimpse as to what the final season would entail… and let’s just say they’ve got a really good storyline brewing. Who will a root for? The good guy… Raylan? Or the best anti-hero on television… Boyd? I just don’t know!
Seems a bit insane, doesn’t it? What’s the moral of today’s blog? Don’t get too attached to freshman television series… AND NO television show is safe from the “new” version of May sweeps.
Which of these cancellations came too soon as far as you’re concerned? I’d love to hear from you!
A reboot of the very popular 24, 24: Live Another Day premiered Monday night and will consist of twelve episodes—more like a miniseries than an entirely new season. And while fans are accustomed to the set up of each episode ticking down one hour in Jack’s crazy schedule, it is rumored we will have to adjust a tiny bit to the shorter series with a few hours skipped here and there. But Monday night was true to form—two consecutive hours in Jack Bauer’s hectic day trying to save the world… or in this case, the American president on foreign soil.
Besides Jack and Chloe, 24 produced many popular characters over the years. And sadly, some of them died. Heck, most of them…
President David Palmer
Curtis Manning – probably my favorite
And even though he was hated by many, President Charles Logan.
But there are also the fan favorites that survived to see another day…
President Allison Taylor
And last but not least, Kim Bauer.
And guess what? I was thrilled to see Audrey and her daddy, now President Heller, back as well in the new series. Not to mention, I fully expect to see at least a few other familiar faces through the 12-episode arc. But I guess we’ll see…
And like any new season, we have new faces (albeit familiar from other projects):
Benjamin Bratt (Law & Order)
Yvonne Strahovski (Chuck)
And, Tate Donovan (Damages and Deception)
So, what about the premiere of 24: Live Another Day?
First, call me crazy. That’s right – crazy. It wasn’t until my guy, my family, and I started reminiscing about the old 24 that I realized just how much Jack yelled. It never dawned on me. But yeah, Jack yells a lot. Yet still, watching the new episode Monday night, I didn’t notice a lot of yelling… am I crazy? Did anyone else notice? Or were you just as wrapped up in the fast-paced episode that you too didn’t hear a lot of yelling?
Secondly, my guy and I made a bet:
How many terrorists/bad guys/people will Jack fight/shoot/stab/blow up/etc?
I went with eight. It was a two-hour episode, which meant approximately forty minutes an hour, totaling eighty minutes of Jack. That’s one terrorist/bad guy/person every ten minutes.
My guy took the overs… as in more than eight.
He won, but not by much. I was surprised. I can’t remember the exact number, but it doesn’t matter—I lost and the action did not disappoint.
Nothing really did, disappoint that is, at least not as far as I’m concerned. I did have a few crooked people pegged from the get go, but that’s alright. The main storyline, at this point anyway, is a good one. And knowing the creators, there’s still a ton left we haven’t seen yet.
And I can’t wait for it all to unravel…
Did you watch 24: Live Another Day? What did you think? I’d love to hear from you!
Oh, the decisions made by the television networks today…
CBS aired a new program back in 2012—Unforgettable. By the end of the first season, the network cancelled it.
However, it seemed the network executives couldn’t quite forget about Unforgettable…
That’s right… a network actually admitted (in a roundabout way) that they were wrong, or at least hasty, in one of their decisions. And this doesn’t happen often—ever really—but CBS officially picked up Unforgettable for a second season last summer after canning it a little over twelve months earlier.
And now? Now Unforgettable is back for its third season!! It’s a crazy world we live in, I tell ya.
So, for the sake of today’s Why It’s Worth a Watch Wednesday post, we’re taking a look back at Unforgettable… a show that I honestly think keeps getting better with each passing season.
The CBS series stars Poppy Montgomery (Without a Trace) as former Syracuse detective Carrie Wells. Carrie remembers everything: every moment and every aspect of every day, except for the murder of her sister when she was a child. When asked to help the New York City police solve a crime that took place outside her apartment that she sort-of witnessed, Carrie is reunited with her ex beau and partner, Detective Al Burns (Dylan Walsh, Nip/Tuck).
After assisting with the one case, Carrie decides to join Al and the NYC force with one major goal—solve her sister’s murder.
The other detectives on the squad (Detective Mike Costello, played byMichael Gaston of The Mentalist, and Detective Nina Inara, played byDaya Vaidya from Robbery Homicide Division) aren’t quite sure what to think of Carrie; both react as if they think she is weird and don’t appear to want to get to know her on a more personal level. At first.
But Detective Roe Sanders (Kevin Rankin from Trauma) actually takes an interest in Carrie; he’s amazed with her recall and often times tests her memory, trying to catch her in a slip. This friendly banter prompts Carrie and Al to open up and share her history and the mystery surrounding her sister’s death with Sanders.
Toward the end of season one, Unforgettable added a TV superstar to the cast – Jane Curtin (Kate & Allie was one of my childhood favorites… and who doesn’t remember Ms. Curtin from SNL back in the day?).
Sadly, all of these characters (with the exception of Carrie, Al, and Jo) are now all gone. With the reboot of season two, the show’s creators went in a different direction with a new cast.
Now, Carrie and Al work for NYC’s Major Crime Division with an entirely new team. Led by Eliot Delson (Dallas Roberts, The Walking Dead), the two work alongside Jay Lee (James Hiroyuki Liao, Prison Break)—the man usually behind the computers—and Cherie Rollins-Murray (Tawny Cypress, Heroes).
Carrie Wells is the ideal detective; especially considering she’s the perfect study subject for a mystery writer as she recalls everything about a crime scene. Additionally, I absolutely adore Dylan Walsh; while I like Poppy Montgomery (big fan of Without a Trace and love the red hair), I initially watched Unforgettable because of Dr. Sean McNamara (Walsh’s character from Nip/Tuck).
Then there’s the story… during the first season, the writers gave viewers not only the fresh case every week, typical of TV’s police procedurals, but also the ongoing serial mystery behind Carrie’s sister’s murder. However, there was one downfall… the individual cases seemed a bit too predictable for me. I personally don’t like to watch one-hour crime dramas only to have the “bad guy” figured out in the first ten or so minutes (my guy likes to call me a TV ninja; I’ve had to learn to keep my opinions to myself while watching police procedurals or I ruin it for him).
But don’t get me wrong; I still recorded every new episode the first year and usually watched Poppy and the boys within a week… and I remember thinking it was a shame the show was in danger of cancellation after the season finale. Not to mention, I consider most crime dramas great writing research.
After the reboot in season two, I felt the storylines were a bit more enjoyable. And I must say, season three’s episodes are even better. Really. They are.
For this, I award the JFTV rating to Unforgettable—the early predictability aside, I wasn’t lying when I said season three is the best yet… and I’m hooked like a fiend.
Do you watch Unforgettable? What do you think – is season three the best yet? I’d love to hear from you!