Holiday shopping tips and toys

 

This may light up your holidays!! It did mine!

All prices and information presented here was accurate at the time of posting but may have changed.

Crepe Revolution

I have to tell you that Crepe’s have come a long way since I remember them years ago.  A friend invited me to Crepe Revolution for dinner and I was a little hesitant to join her because I had this idea of what crepe’s were all about.  Surprise! They’re Great!!

I started with Spanikrepita which is their take on the traditional greek pastry.  It was loaded with spinach, feta cheese and layered between lightly buttered crepe and baked until crispy.  The Tzatziki sauce was like icing on the cake!
I could have eaten five of these.

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Next up: Roasted Butternut Squash soup.  This was the first time I’ve ever had it served in a wine glass–and I loved it!  No fooling with a spoon, just lift and sip like a fine wine (which pairs nicely with Cooperstown Beer I might add!)  Rich and creamy with a subtle sweet roasted flavor just as the menu read.  (Vegetarian and gluten free.)

Feeling a little adventurous,  I ordered the Beef Bourguinon and Chipotle savory crepes.  Tender braised beef with carrots, onions, mushrooms, burgundy wine gravy and the Chipotle crepe with chopped pork, roasted jalapeno’s, onion, tomato, monterey jack, sour creem and chipotle sauce.  YUM! (I do prefer a good deal more heat than the average person so there was just a smidge of heat so ask the culinary team to bring it on!!)

Maybe I was getting carried away but I hadn’t had crepe’s in so long I ordered the Duck Confit over spinach with brandy mushroom.  The duck was roasted until slightly crispy and the brandy mushroom gravy was AWESOME! I could have bathed in this stuff.  When you go ask Executive chef Todd Wilczewski or Chef Robert Morneweck to fix you a crepe with this gravy (on everything!)

I thought I was done but my friends talked me into Crepe Revolution’s famous Bananas Foster Crepe.  You know this crepe:  banana, brown sugar, rum, cinnamon, candied pecans, whipped cream but melded together in a way that was OUT OF CONTROL! (I am not yelling.)  Take a look:

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When I was all done owner Neel Sengupta came by to see how I enjoyed everything and I loved what he said.  Tom, we want to reset your palate with every course.  I agree!  I’ll be resetting my GPS to take me to Crepe Revolution more often.  What a delightful surprise.  Maybe I’ll try the brunch!

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Hungry still? Whip up this delightful Irish meal in no time!

Thank you to Thomas James Spravka for some of the photos used in this review.

We Bought a Zoo

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We Bought a Zoo sounds interesting enough but today I discovered THE feel good film of the year.  (And to think that I almost didn’t go after watching the trailer and thinking it was just another cute animal film.) Directed by Cameron Crowe and starring Matt Damon,  Scarlett Johansson, Thomas Haden Church, Colin Ford, and Maggie Elizabeth Jones as Rosie Mee (Maggie is from Georgia and lives next door to my buddy Ken who says she is the greatest kid!)  Maggie is an absolute natural and lights up the screen.  Scarlett Johansson is gold as Kelly Foster.  The entire cast seemed as if they had been running the zoo for years.

Based on a true story, the movie just made me feel great.  It was Joyous! The casting was perfect.  For me, Matt Damon is best in this role.  There is a scene when he is sitting with his computer and the camera comes in so close to only show his eyes the emotion wrapped itself around me.  The cinematography was beautiful.  (You’d never know it was during the winter season in California!)  The lighting was brilliant.  One of my favorite scenes shows Matt reflecting outside of the house with the sun dancing through trees whispering in the wind.   The peacefulness and reflective song “Sun” by Jonsi captures what Matt’s character is feeling on screen and what I was feeling as a viewer.  Another involves a character standing in the window during the rain and again every aspect of the scene from the acting, lighting and the music combine to pull at your heart.   The score is truly the DNA of this film.  Composed at the request of director Cameron Crowe,  features music by Sigur Ros front man and leading light, Jon Thor Birgisson, aka Jonsi. I was lifted to a higher place through the emotionally empowering music of this beautifully brilliant film.  As tears rolled down my face repeatedly during the movie I listened to the music and floated away getting lost in the moment. Every scene fluidly scored lifted my heart higher and higher and truly touched my soul. I’ve never felt like this from a movie or soundtrack.  I guess the movie resonates with me because I was reminded of my mom and my dog Parker who both have passed on.

The film is so pure and filled with light.  As one reviewer wrote  “achingly beautiful themes…a series of themes that would reflect everything we’d hoped for.” The now discovered fact that Cameron encouraged the actors to listen to the music before a scene explains why their emotions are so beautifully expressed on screen. This music is a part of the films DNA ingrained in my memory, my heart and spirit. The music of Jonsi captures the light and the film shines like a joyous bright star discovered for the very first time. I not only downloaded this soundtrack immediately after seeing the film (I’ve only done this one other time) but I also ordered the c.d. as a reminder of the day I discovered Jonsi. And thank you Cameron Crowe for your vision in requesting the musical paint that covers the heartfelt canvas of  “We Bought a Zoo.”

Here’s another feel good moment!

Before and After Photo Retouching

You’ve probably seen the amazing photos of celebs and most anyone in a magazine looking incredible.  But when you see the magic of retouching by studying the seldom seen “before” images, you really get an idea of just how amazing photo retouching can be.  Look at these before and after images:

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How do these celebs look AFTER?  Click here for all the photo retouching magic!

How about Peachtree street at The Fox Theatre transforming during a snowstorm? See the picture that is captivating Fox fans!

Michael Buble heckled by mom

A rather proud mom interrupts a Michael Buble concert recently to tell him about her 15 year old son who loves to sing.  Michael seemed annoyed at first then what happened is great spontaneous magic!

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Here’s another feel good video!













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