Monday Motivation: Say No, Do What You Want

Well, hello world! It’s been a while since I’ve written my last post. I’ve missed you! I’ve missed writing! Most of all, I’ve missed working through my thoughts — it’s therapeutic!

In life, we’re given this narrative of what we’re supposed to do. We’re supposed to go to school. We’re supposed to graduate and get a job and live happily ever after.

It isn’t that easy though, especially if you don’t follow the path of what you’re supposed to do. It comes down to the choice of what you’re supposed to do and what you want to do.

As I watched 27 Dresses the other day, one quote struck a chord within me. As Jane, played by Katherine Heigl, walked out of her sister’s engagement party where she was supposed to be the perfect bridesmaid, Kevin, James Marsden’s character, said, “You can say no, and you can do what you want. What do you want?”

You have the power to say no. It’s your life. They’re your decisions and and you have to live with them. If the situation is not right for you, then say no. You have the authority to create the life you want on your own terms.

In the end, if you love your decisions, then you do not need other people to be happy with them.

Create your life for you. Regret nothing.

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Eat, Pray… Watch a Movie

“You have so much inside you, and the noblest happiness all. Don’t just wait for a man to come along,” Albert Camus expressed. “That’s the mistake so many women make. Find your happiness in yourself.”

In “Eat Pray Love,” Elizabeth Gilbert goes on a journey of self-exploration following her divorce from her husband. Gilbert travels across the globe as she forces herself out of her comfort zone. When you challenge yourself, you learn about yourself and grow.

Guess what, my friends. I’m going on a journey — a journey that doesn’t require me to leave the state and has limitless possibilities of exploration. I’m going on a theatrical journey from the seat of my favorite movie theater.

As sophomores, Christie and I at the movie theater viewing the fine work of Hilary Duff — “Raise Your Voice.”

Christie, my best friend and author of Costa Christina, has left the country, and it’s tradition that we explore movies together. Years ago in high school we would grab coffee, do a little shopping, have dinner and go to a movie. As we progressed through college, coffee and movies remained, but shopping waned and it became a place to escape to. When life got busy, the movies brought us back together.

The world stops for an hour and a half.

As a result of her departure, I challenge myself to get out of my comfort zone and go to movies by myself.  I also challenge all of you reading this to go to a movie by yourself. And who knows, you might even enjoy it.

After all, you get lost in the things you love. Through the journey, you learn about yourself.

On Wednesday, I saw the Galifinakis-Ferrell comedy, The Campaign. There’s nothing like a mid-week escape filled with laughter. And trust me, there was a lot of laughing on my part, which was absolutely what I needed. For the duration of the film, the world could not reach me. It was the perfect break. Days later, my family learned of me going to the movie by myself and found it comical. They can laugh all they want. It takes courage to do things on your own despite what others think of you.

But, it doesn’t matter what other people think. As long as you’re content with yourself, let the world judge away. They’ll judge you for the fact that they are too afraid to do what you yourself are not afraid to do.

Judge away, world. Judge away.

If you take anything away from this post, please remember, “Don’t be scared to walk alone. Don’t be scared to like it.” These words of wisdom are courtesy of John Mayer.

A Movie Love Affair: For Lovers Only

Source: For Lovers Only movie

Three words: For Lovers Only — It’s the best movie you’ve probably never heard about.

As Sofia, a journalist, walks along a Parisian street, she passes by Yves, her former lover and fashion photographer who has lost his “sight,” and both are left wonderstruck. This woman and this man agree to dinner and their romance blossoms from this point forward as they travel across France.

“‘For Lovers Only’ is a story of a MAN and a WOMAN in love,” according to the film’s website.

This film is simple yet strikes a resonating chord. Sofia, played by our favorite “Castle” actress, Stana Katic, captures the viewers with her beauty, intrigue and strength, while Mark Polish, who plays Yves, allows the audience to fall in love with his muse just as he does all over again.

“A picture that practices restraint and embraces limitation — that allows the viewer to hold no judgement on the Lovers behavior, but to accept these two and their passion for one another as something beautiful and rare,” according to the film’s website.

If you think this is your typical romantic comedy, then you’re in for a surprise. As a person who counts “27 Dresses” amongst my favorite movies, this movie is a delightful present that you will not find at your local movie theater.

What’s more, For Lovers Only used a direct-to-iTunes marketing strategy. This movie was released on July 11, 2011 strictly on iTunes, where it was the number one movie in the romance category for two weeks and remained in the top 10 movie downloads for a month, according to Bloomberg News.

While the film has earned over $500,000 in revenue, the cast and crew who shot the movie in 12 days with a still-frame camera agreed to a paycheck only if For Lovers Only was a success. And as it goes, the film is a success with no major film studio backing that relied on word-of-mouth marketing and social media, which can be seen on its website.

The essence of this post would be lost if I didn’t tell you to grab your lover and rent For Lovers Only this weekend, which is available to rent on iTunes and Amazon.

Embark on a love affair with this film — and Katic’s hair, of course.

Here’s a look at my favorite montage from For Lovers Only:

It’s perfect to watch with your special someone this Valentine’s Day weekend.

If there were mountains in Minnesota, then I would shout my love for this film from the mountain tops. Until there are mountains here, I will just continue to tell everyone and anyone about my love for this film.

Just go watch it already.

Valentine’s Day: Make Me Melt Playlist

Source: Pinterest

Love is an intense feeling of deep affection, according to New Oxford American Dictionary.

So let me start by saying that I love love. I really love love.

While language, religion, culture and location may separate us, love runs through all of us. Love binds us together — whether it be your first love, a lasting love or love for life — it’s evident in all of us. So let’s celebrate love.

And let’s not forget, the holiday of love, Valentine’s Day, is one week away, which is why I have compiled a list of songs to get the so-called “party” started.

Here the winners are:

1. “Enchanted” by Taylor Swift: How can you deny the wonderstruck image evoked by this song? You can’t, plain and simple. And don’t forget it’s featured in the trailer for The Vow.

2. “Arms” by Christina Perri: The lyrical vulnerability and musical simplicity are truly magical.

3. “Anchor” by Mindy Gledhill: “When all the world is spinning round like a red balloon way up in the clouds and my feet will not stay on the ground, you anchor me back down.”

4. “Helium Hearts” by Jason Reeves: You will feel like you’re floating on cloud nine after listening to this song. “We’re falling skyward.”

5. “You Know It’s True” by Jules Larson: “I’ll put your locket in my heart, keeping you close no matter where you are.”

Now you have a playlist that will surely make you melt, so don’t forget to celebrate all of those people you love.

Make someone’s day special and tell them you love them.

Castle: A Hand Caress That Will Make You Melt

Let’s take a moment to reminisce.

As the shot rang out, Det. Kate Beckett collapsed to the luscious, vibrant green cemetery grass, and Castle whispered those three words we’ve been waiting to hear.

“Kate, I love you. I love you, Kate,” Castle said, as he shielded her from harm’s way.

Fast forward to last week’s episode, “Dial M For Mayor,” in which it is revealed that Castle, who has been protecting Det. Beckett all season, is a well-placed pawn in the unnamed dark-shadowy figure’s game–Don’t forget that he received Capt. Montgomery’s files. This disclosure left fans reveling due to the unexpected connection between this episode and the murder of Beckett’s mother, Johanna.

Now let’s pause for a moment. In the season four premiere, Beckett told Castle she didn’t remember anything about the shooting and, more importantly, his confession of love. But later on reveals she remembers EVERYTHING about it.

OK, let’s now fast forward to tonight’s episode, “An Embarrassment of Bitches.” Reality Stars, murder, dogs and oh-so-unforgettable look between Kate and Castle as he caresses her hand. If you don’t believe me, take a look for yourself.

Make me melt.

While this episode airs tonight, Monday, Jan. 23 on ABC, it’s coming only weeks before the film-noir flashback episode in which we see, what Stana Katic called, “the ultimate expression of love.”

Take a deep breath and indulge.