Jun 25, 2019

MOVIE REVIEW | Toy Story 4

When a movie makes it big, it's not unusual that producers try to cash in by creating sequels. Sometimes they works, sometimes they don't. Fortunately for us, Toy Story 4 feels familiar yet new at the same time.

It's familiar cuz we know most of the lead characters. But it also feels new because we're introduced to several new characters who Woody finds during his lost adventures. There's a scary doll in need of a voice box and a "trash" character Forkie, who steals scenes throughout the film. A fork....go figure.

Visually, Toy Story 4 is outstanding and the graphics are astonishing. I found myself reminding myself this was a movie and that toys don't actually do what they do on screen. The voice actors really bring the characters to life. It's little wonder it broke box office records in its first weekend in theatres. 

Even if you have never seen a Toy Story move before, Toy Story 4 is a story within itself. One with both a message and a meaning, delivered in a way that may find you becoming a bit emotional. To infinity. And beyond.  


SCRIBBLES VIDEO | Getting Creative

NEW! Sometimes a creative project can be quick and fairly easy, yet the end result is awesome. Here's a good example of one such project I recently did...

SCRIBBLES VIDEO | A Little Piece of Paradise

NEW! I had a great time when my good friend Becky invited me to spend the night at her place, recently. Becky used to live in St Catharines but moved a few years ago to a rural area, where she lives in a huge home with boyfriend Dan, dog Angel and kitty Ollie.

The house sits on 20 acres of property much of which is a forest. There's a great pond with fish and frogs and every kind of bird you can imagine likes to visit Becky's place.

Here's a look at Becky's beautiful home...

SCRIBBLES VIDEO  | My New Feathered Friend

ENCORE! In case you missed it when we first posted it, check out the short clip below and see how a robin played with Becky's cat. Actually the window has a special finish that prevents whatever is outside from seeing what's inside. So this robin isn't actually taunting the cat, it's fluttering up and down cuz it likely sees its own reflection.

See ALL our Scribbles posts | Visit our HOME page | CLICK HERE

YOU | Chill

MOVIE REVIEW | The Secret Life of Pets 2

In the original Secret Life of Pets, moviegoers are given an amusing look at what our pets do when we’re not home. Forget chewing on slippers and drinking out of the toilet, these extraordinary pets talk, sneak out of their homes and -along with their fellow furry friends - take on great adventures. It was a cleverly crafted film that was a box office hit.

And there within lies the problem. Where the first movie was new, cute and clever, The Secret Life of Pets 2 merely copies that formula, makes a few tweaks and calls it a day.

Unlike blockbusters like Shrek and Despicable Me, there’s no cryptic humour which only escorting adults in the theatre will get in Pets 2, it’s pretty much non-stop action reminiscent of Saturday morning cartoons, when such an entity still existed.

The animation is well done as are the vocal talents of Kevin Hart, Eric Stonestreet, Harrison Ford, Ellie Kemper and Chris Renaud.

If you're looking for a riveting storyline you may be disappointed, but if your intent is to keep the kiddies amused for 84 minutes, The Secret Life of Pets 2 will likely serve that purpose.


YOU | Love is in the Air...

Live for today, hope for tomorrow.

Niagara Shows it's Pride in a Big Way...


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SCRIBBLES VIDEO | Alyssa's Proud Pride Performance

Alyssa Edwards had the crowd screaming in delight, when she performed at Pride in the Park in St.Catharines on June 8. Her performance was the highlight of a day filled with entertainment, vendors, food, drink and colourful fun.

Alyssa is best known for her appearances on Rupaul's Drag Race & All Stars. She also has her own TV docuseries on Netflix called Dancing Queen.

Here's a segment of Alyssa's performance, as recorded by Rob Gill and edited by Scribbles. Enjoy!

SCRIBBLES VIDEO | The WOW Factor...Stephensville Garden Gallery

NEW!  A few weeks ago I hadn't even heard of Stephensville Garden Gallery and now I can't stop talking about how amazing it is. Much, much more than just a place to get plants for your home or garden, the garden gallery has indoor and outdoor home decor, fountains, Buddhas of all descriptions, plus a fashion boutique, a Beer Store and an LCBO outlet.

Here's a look at some of the astonishing things you'll find at Stephensville Garden Gallery...

Stevensville Garden Gallery | 2821 Stevensville Rd.  | Stevensville, ON  |  905-382-2661

There's no need to rush. What's meant for you always arrives right on time.

Jun 24, 2019

ENCORE | Lost Wallet Brings Out a Good Samaritan

Our pal Rob was sure a happy guy when his lost wallet was returned to him, as seen in these photos which were first featured on Scribbles in January 2015.

Rob had lost his wallet on Boxing Day 2014 at the Walmart in Welland. He returned to the store and searched the parking lot once he realized it was missing, but alas the bulky billfold was nowhere to be seen. The wallet contained numerous documents, his I.D., gift cards and some money.

A week or so later, Rob received a parcel. In it was his wallet and a note: "Happy New Year Robert! I found your wallet. You had $40 in it. I’ve used some to mail it back to you.”  It was signed Melissa, with a happy face drawn above her name. Accompanying the note was a receipt for the postage.

His story was later shared in the Welland Tribune. Try as they may, Rob and his mom Merry could not track down the good Samaritan to offer her a huge thank you.

It was a very touching experience, one that brings as much joy to read now as when it happened.

See ALL our Scribbles posts | Visit our HOME page | CLICK HERE

Jun 23, 2019

ENCORE | A Different Kind of 'Senior Moment'

Scribbles pal Hazel Mackiddie invited me to join her at the Mandarin Restaurant for lunch on Oct. 1st. The popular Chinese food chain is celebrating the Moon this month and Thursday they offered 50% off for all seniors.

Although Hazel had made a reservation, which helped a bit, the place was very busy and the parking lot was packed.  Hazel is 74 years old (and YES I asked her in advance if I could include that info here...LOL) She has officially been a senior for 9 years but still had to show her senior's card to the hostess.

We pigged out on appetizers, entrees & desserts and the food and service were top notch as expected. We made sure to go back for seconds on our favourite dishes. You can't say they don't have much to offer at the Mandarin, that's for darn sure!
When we finished, Hazel took the bill. We were charged for TWO senior half price specials.  I was happy we received a lower bill, especially since it was Hazel's treat, but not overly amused that the day before my 55th birthday, I received a senior's discount.  Hell, I had even freshly coloured my hair and goatee hours before we went there. 

But half off anything is always a good deal, even if it bruises your ego a bit. LOL!

This post first appeared on Scribbles Oct 2015. Gotta admit, still wouldn't be overly thrilled if this were to happen today. But then there's moments like last week at Pride in the Park when I was asked for ID at the bar area that make up for it (although they were asking pretty much everyone that day, I still took it as a compliment. LOL)

Jun 19, 2019

ENCORE | Going. Going.........Gone!

This post first appeared here Sept. 2015. Hard to believe it's been almost 4 years since I put the key in the ignition one final time. Thankfully, my mom and sister sometimes let me use their cars, especially appreciated when it's grocery day or I have a doctor appointment.

Jun 16, 2019

FATHER OF THE YEAR | The Great & Grand Jim Gets Tails Waggin'

Any man can become a father, but it takes someone special to become a dad.

Jun 12, 2019

YOU | Doing His Rock n' Roll Duty

Change the world by being yourself.

 – Amy Poehler

Jun 11, 2019

ENCORE | It's So Hard to Say Goodbye

It never ceases to amaze me when, after the death of a pet, someone says something insensitive like “It was only a dog” or “It’s just a cat”.

Actually, in some small way, I feel sorry for these people. For, by choice or misfortune, they have obviously never experienced the amazing bond that can only be felt by the companionship of a pet.

The unconditional love a pet offers is truly a special gift. You can share your most private affairs or tearful sorrows and be assured they’ll take your secrets to the grave.

When you are sick, your pet stays with you, when your pet isn’t feeling well, you help them out. They are furry kids who never outgrow the need for you to care for them and in return they offer their loyalty and endless love. It’s a pretty sweet deal. Truly unparalleled.

So it only stands to reason that having built this incredible relationship over the years with these devoted, gentle beings, it’s going to hurt like hell when that relationship is suddenly gone.

Sometimes the silence, left after a pet has passed away, can be deafening.

Each time I have lost a pet, it feels like a little piece of my heart goes with them. But...in time, each piece is replaced with a little angel, who remains with me and in my heart forever.

This post was written by Ken Leavoy and first appeared in Scribbles May, 2015.

Jun 8, 2019

ARTFUL | Ginny's Flowers Still Make Us Happy

MOVIE REVIEW | Rocketman Soars

I guess it’s best we start by addressing the elephant in the room. A movie about the life of Elton John is bound to be compared to last fall’s box office hit Bohemian Rhapsody. 

After all, it’s hard not to find parallel’s between Elton and Freddie Mercury. Both changed their names when they were first starting out. Both are gay, but were each briefly married to women. Both are flamboyant with lavish lifestyles. There’s many similarities in these two legends lives.

Where Rocketman truly differs [without giving too much away] is its approach to the featured songs. They’re rearranged renditions of Elton’s mega hits, masterfully used to tell the icon’s tale.

Taron Egerton gives an Oscar-worthy performance as the grand Sir Elton. He does all his own singing, something Elton himself has pointed out, when he speaks of his perceived flaws with Bohemian Rhapsody - comprised of the actors lip synching Queen’s songs.

Egerton puts his heart and soul into this role and truly embodies Elton John. Seeing him in Elton’s outlandish outfits is like a psychedelic flashback. It’s just like we remember the flashy piano man, gap between his front teeth, wild eyeglasses and all.

Rocketman is a visually stunning film. The sets. The attention to detail. It’s an awesome treat for your eyes as well as your ears.

Saturday night's alright for fighting but any night's alright to check out Rocketman.


YOU | Handmaid's in the House

Our greatest glory is not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall.

- Confucius