Stephanie has more sessions of her class called "Creating Abstract Art Using The 'Pour' Method" coming up this fall at the LaGrange Art League
Details, and sign-up information are on their site. She's taught this class in the past to much acclaim and much positive feedback. Sign up now!

And keep the evening of October 19 open. Matt will be the featured reader at the Tamale Hut Cafe Reading Series and it will be a book release party of Book One of Barnstormers. You can read a sample of the story on his web site, storiesbymatt.net/, then come out on the 19th to see what lengths Matt will go to sell you a book.


For more information about Stephie's art, please also check out artbystephie.com.
For Matt's writing projects, please go to storiesbymatt.net. Enjoy your visit here!


01/30/19: Once a month, I scan through the offerings from Netflix and Amazon Prime, to see if anything new has been added to either service that I'd like to see. I don't do much streaming from either, preferring to watch some of the hundreds of shows that I have recorded on my DVR or to watch the recent DVDs from Netflix DVD service. (I still have that because only a small fraction of the films in my DVD queue are available for streaming anywhere.)
     Stephie sat down while I was doing this today and said she wanted to watch something. I was scanning the list when I spotted Iron Sky. "Have you heard about this?" I asked. "No," she replied. "What is it?" "It's a movie about Nazis on the moon. The trailer is bonkers!" We watched the trailer and she was sufficiently interested, so we watched. it.
     Surprisingly, it was a pretty fun little movie. In some ways, it's just what you think it will be from the trailer: a low-budget movie with halfway-decent CG effects about Nazis, who have been living on the far side of the moon since the end of WWII coming back to try to conquer Earth, specifically the United States. What I didn't expect was some social commentary mixed in with the over-the-top action sequences, cardboard characters, and of course, Nazis. Not a great movie, but entertaining in a popcorn movie way.
     And when it was over, I told Stephie that I read that the movie was actually crowd-sourced, with fans paying in advance to get it made. She thought that I said "kraut-sourced" and we had a good laugh about that.


01/20/19: I have a routine that every Sunday afternoon, I take a trip to my local Jewel grocery store. There, I pick up my supplies for the work week: lunchmeat, bread, half-and-half, snacks, and whatever else I need. I typically get some frozen veggies to supplement my sandwiches, and occasionally get a frozen dinner or two to break up the sandwich monotony.
     I usually go for the Lean Cuisine because they're cheap and filling and reasonably healthy, at least as frozen food goes. I used to mix in a Healthy Choice every once in a while, but these days, they're rarely on sale. Today, I was browsing the cases and spotted what you see here: Banquet Salisbury Steak with Mashed Potatoes. We used to have Banquet-brand frozen food when we were kids, so I thought it might be a flashback to childhood. I opened the door and was about to take one, when I spotted the nutritional info in the lower left of the package. 700 calories doesn't seem too bad. 14g of Sat Fat made me pause. 2590mg of sodium made me take out my phone and snap a picture. How can they get away with giving you 113% of your recommended daily allotment of sodium in one package? I know frozen meals are high in sodium, but this is nuts!
     After I took the picture, I wandered over to the Lean Cuisine section, and while I was deciding if I wanted anything, a woman walked up to the case where the Banquet items were. She opened the door, grabbed two Mega Meals, tossed them in to her cart, when walked away. I was half-tempted to ask her if she knew what was in there, but I figure it's none of my business.

01/04/19:
I've been working at the Chicago Botanic Garden for a while now, and one of the most spectacular things there is the way they wrap some of the trees in lights for the holidays. It's especially stunning at night, and since I get to work before the sun comes up, I get to see it every day. Today I tried to capture what I see with my cell phone. Don't worry, I started filming at a stop light, and didn't pay any attention to the phone as I was driving. Enjoy!





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