The Adventure & Excitement in Tomorrowland

Tomorrowland is the movie you should take your family to this weekend. It’s a movie of adventure and excitement that provides hope.

imageFrom Disney comes two-time Oscar® winner Brad Bird’s “Tomorrowland,” a riveting mystery adventure starring Academy Award® winner George Clooney. Bound by a shared destiny, former boy-genius Frank (Clooney), jaded by disillusionment, and Casey (Britt Robertson), a bright, optimistic teen bursting with scientific curiosity, embark on a danger-filled mission to unearth the secrets of an enigmatic place somewhere in time and space known only as “Tomorrowland.” What they must do there changes the world—and them—forever.

It’s a science fiction movie full of imagination and flights of fancy. I mean who wouldn’t love to ride a jet pack and fly around? It sounds like fun to me. I’d actually like to go see it again to see what I missed the first time. I feel like so much was going on.

 

Featuring a screenplay by “Lost” writer and co-creator Damon Lindelof and Brad Bird, from a story by Lindelof & Bird & Jeff Jensen, “Tomorrowland” promises to take audiences on a thrill ride of nonstop adventures through new dimensions that have only been dreamed of.

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I love the cast of the movie. Tomorrowland stars Hugh Laurie as brilliant scientist David Nix, Raffey Cassidy, Tim McGraw, Kathryn Hahn, Keegan-Michael Key and Thomas Robinson. “Tomorrowland” opens in U.S. theaters today!

 

Now here are a few fun facts from the movie:

Costume designer Jeffrey Kurland had to dress almost 400 extras in 1964-era attire for the Hall of Invention and Unisphere Plaza World’s Fair scenes.  

Young Raffey Cassidy, who plays Athena, underwent training in swimming, gymnastics, wirework and martial arts, which was the primary focus of her training as her character kicks some serious butt in the movie. 
 

When it came to creating a city built by visionaries with advanced technologies, filmmakers knew it had to look like one and finding such a place was not an easy task. At first it seemed as though the whole of Tomorrowland would have to be built from scratch, an expensive and time-consuming proposition. But then in a series of wonderful coincidences, Tom Peitzman, the visual effects producer and the film’s co-producer, stumbled upon a car commercial early on in production; the location in the commercial looked so futuristic that he recorded the ad on his phone and brought it to director Brad Bird. The location turned out to be the City of Arts and Sciences in Valencia, Spain, and was designed by Santiago Calatrava whose work was already serving as an inspiration for production designer Scott Chambliss. The discovery also dovetailed with director Brad Bird’s preference for physical locations over virtual sets.

 

In recreating the 1964 World’s Fair for “Tomorrowland,” filmmakers were lucky to find that one of the iconic pieces, the Unisphere, was actually in Flushing Meadows, New York, standing outside of the USTA National Tennis Center. The huge globe’s fountains are still in place as well as the gardens. The filmmakers dispatched a photographer to New York to take photos so that they could use the real images as a composite element in the scenes.  

Disneyland Diamond Edition & Tomorrowland #TomorrowlandEvent

As I’m writing this the kids are getting ready to go to Disneyland today. We are so excited to be celebrating Disneyland’s 60th year. The real party actually starts tomorrow with a  24-hour party that inaugurates the Diamond Celebration, from 6 a.m. Friday, May 22, until 6 a.m. Saturday, May 23, 2015, local time. Nighttime will glitter as never before with three, sensational shows that expand the 60-year tradition of innovative and immersive storytelling: the brilliant, high-energy “Paint the Night” parade and “Disneyland Forever” fireworks spectacular at Disneyland Park, and the all-new “World of Color – Celebrate! The Wonderful World of Walt Disney” at Disney California Adventure Park. In “World of Color – Celebrate!,” Mickey Mouse and award-winning actor Neil Patrick Harris will tell the story of Walt Disney and the Happiest Place on Earth with film, animation, music and spectacular fountains. image

I had a great time a few weeks ago as we explored Tomorrowland and rode some of my favorite rides in celebration of the new movie Tomorrowland.

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We rode Star Tours and Astro Blasters which we ride everytime we go to Disneyland and we will be riding again today if I can get this post written.

Walt Disney observed that Disneyland will never be complete so long as there is imagination left in the world, and since Opening Day, July 17, 1955, the Disneyland Resort tradition of innovation has continued, inspiring classic theme park attractions such as Pirates of the Caribbean, Space Mountain, Star Tours, Soarin’ Over California, Toy Story Midway Mania and Radiator Springs Racers. The Diamond Celebration continues this tradition with three fantastic new shows that expand the boundaries of after-dark entertainment – Disney’s signature “kiss goodnight.”

• “Paint the Night” parade – When the lights go down in Disneyland, the Diamond Celebration illuminates the park with a brilliant, new parade. The luminescent parade creates a river of color flowing down Main Street, U.S.A., with an array of Disney characters and more than 1.5 million brilliant LED lights that flash and glow as Mickey Mouse uses his vivid imagination to “Paint the Night.”  With dazzling special effects, unforgettable music, energetic performances, fun surprises and spectacular floats, “Paint the Night” is more vibrant than any parade in 60 years at the Disneyland Resort.  Even the choreography glows, as parade performers light up with their props and costumes. Tinker Bell leads the procession in a magical, musical overture, closely followed by a float reminiscent of the giant bass drum that led the “Main Street Electrical Parade.” Lightning McQueen races in with his buddy Mack Truck, who makes a hefty impression at 54-feet long, covered from headlights to tail pipe in gleaming light. Anna and Elsa from “Frozen” glide through the night in a shimmering palace of ice and snow. Guests also will be delighted to see Cinderella, Rapunzel and beloved characters from tales such as “Monsters, Inc.,”  “The Little Mermaid,” “Beauty and the Beast” and “Toy Story,” with Mickey and his pals creating a breathtaking grand finale.

• “Disneyland Forever” fireworks spectacular – The dazzling new fireworks show, “Disneyland Forever,” is a street-to-sky, immersive experience like nothing seen before at the Disneyland Resort. Guests will be surrounded by the worlds of timeless Disney tales, from the tips of their toes to the sky high above, thanks to the largest installation of projection mapping technology in a Disney park and surprising special effects. One minute they will be standing on Main Street, U.S.A., and the next they could be stampeding across Simba’s Pride Lands, dancing with King Louie from “The Jungle Book,” traveling “Under the Sea” with the Little Mermaid, flying over London with Peter Pan, dripping in honey with Pooh in a whimsical dream of heffalumps and woozles, or quivering as Queen Elsa brings a glimmering blanket of snow over Disneyland. 

Tomorrowland is a great movie that you have to see and it’s in theaters this Friday. Which is fitting since that’s when the Diamond Celebration officially starts.

2-4-6-8 Who Do We Appreciate… Denny’s Denny’s Denny’s #DennysDiners

I’m a Denny’s Diner Ambassador and compensated for my time.

You’ve probably heard that before right? 2-4-6-8 Who do we appreciate? Denny’s that’s right. Denny’s has an amazing selection of food at the dollar points, 2, 4, 6, and 8. I took my kids there the other night and well, they decided to order off of the kids menu but I did take advantage of one of the 2.00 items. We ordered the Tropical Puppy Pancakes. They were amazing and I think we will be starting a new Denny’s Diner family tradition. Every time we go to Denny’s from now on we are going to be order whichever Puppy Pancakes they have on the menu as our starter or as our dessert.

 

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They were so good. I had a hard time just having one…

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We almost ordered the Cookies and Cream Mega Sundae to end the meal but we were all full before dessert, but at only 4.00 it was almost worth getting just for a bite. We might have to go in some time just for dessert.

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My husband likes to order the eggs in a basket for six dollars and I love the Country Fried Steak & Eggs Skillet but I couldn’t pass up the Sriracha Chicken Sandwich with Jalapeno Bottle Caps from the Denny’s with a Twist menu. YUM. It’s so so good. I ate it all it’s very rare that I want to lick my plate clean but with this dish I really clean the plate. LOL. I think it’s my new favorite so I’m sad that it’s for a short time only, but I know that they will replace it with something just as good. The menu will be available until 6/22. You will also find great coffee items that I’ve tried and approve of along with the Banana Bread French Toast Slam. OH YUM!

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Zoe surprised me this last time at Denny’s she ordered Mac and Cheese, with apples and caramel and she got a side salad too. I think she would have been happy with just a salad and apples as the side because she didn’t eat much of her mac and cheese but she left full and happy.

Miles ordered the make your own Grand Slam and ate everything on his plate. He can’t usually eat that much food so I know he is growing. It’s a good amount of food on that plate.


The Creation of Tomorrowland: Brad Bird and Damon Lindelof #TomorrowlandEvent

What must be done to save tomorrow, that is the premise for Tomorrowland. The film is directed, produced and co-written by two-time Oscar® winner Brad Bird (“Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol,” “The Incredibles”). Damon Lindelof (“Star Trek,” “Star Trek Into Darkness”) and Jeffrey Chernov (“Star Trek,” “Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol”) are also producers. John Walker (“The Incredibles”), Bernard Bellew (“Les Misérables,” “28 Weeks Later”), Jeff Jensen and Brigham Taylor (upcoming “Jungle Book”) serve as executive producers. We had the opportunity to sit down with director Brad Bird and producer Damon Lindelof who shared the process of making the movie and how it was all inspired by the idea of an optimistic future. Lindelof really wanted to capture the past 1964 World view of optimism. But let’s start back at the archives we visited yesterday on the blog.

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Q : How did the information from the Disney archives help you to bring tomorrowland to life on the big screen?

DAMON : I think that we are both fascinated with Imagineering and particularly Walt’s futurism. A lot of that stuff was rampant in the early days of designing the Parks itself. And in tomorrowland obviously he came up with the concept in the 50s and 60s but I think that this sort of treasure trove of roads not taken, the part that Brad and I particularly zeroed in on was the 1964 world’s fair where there were a number of attractions that…..Mr. Lincoln, carousel progress.

BRAD : Magic skyway.

 

DAMON : And we just felt like….

BRAD : Small world. 20150507_193417402_iOS

 

DAMON : Yeah, small world of course. It would be really great to see those on the big screen kind of re-create that feeling. Our initial ambition was a lot higher but again the world’s fair as what they represented at the time, particularly in the 60s, the connection to Disneyland that was really the stuff that we kind of locked in on.

BRAD : But it’s also that world’s fairs in and of themselves were a thing where people would bring together their brightest minds and talk about the future. And they were semi regular event where people came together from all over the world and kind of traded ideas. And they had a utopian aspect. And when we were talking about what happened to the idea of a positive future we kind of started to notice that that great future sort of disappeared around the time the world’s fairs disappeared.

The, you know, the world was, went through world wars and had plenty of strife but people clung to the idea of things in the future will be better. And that idea seems to have been retired. And we are now everybody seems to be going, yeah it’s going to suck. You know? And is there anything we can do about it? No. So we’re all just kind of –, thank you. We’re all just kind of on this bus that we have no control over the destination.

And we were just kind of looking at each other going, why did that change? And when did it change? And you know, how do we get back to it? So that was kind of trying to do sort of a fable around that idea was kind of on our minds.

Q : What do you do to feed that creativity and just help you tell those stories?

BRAD : Coffee. Yeah. It doesn’t have to be Starbucks by the way.

DAMON : I think, you know we watch, we watch a lot of TV. We go and see a lot of movies. And we tell our wives and children that that’s work. But it is the idea of constantly sort of surrounding yourself. I do feel for me in particular and I think that Brad shares this is we sort of grew up in that culture and the idea of saying like, I want to do this one day. But where we start almost every time that we get together is oh, did you see this?

Did you read this? What do you think about that? And I think that we are so steeped we are fans of this material ourselves. The fact that we get to make it. And I think the minute that you start to seal yourself off and say, I’m just going to become completely introverted and write my own stuff and you close the gates to everything that surrounds you. I think in a lot of ways this movie as Brad was just saying is a little bit of a response to these other you know, to the sort of apocalyptic storytelling that we’ve been kind of barraged with. And we love the hunger games. And I want to see mad Max.

BRAD : Yeah, yeah.

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DAMON : But I also think like there’s got to be a future that isn’t of people trying to kill each other in the desert or teenagers killing each other. Again…….

BRAD : Or zombies killing each other…..

DAMON : Or zombies killing each other. Zombies killing teenagers and all that stuff.

Q : What part of technology would you like to have today from the ones that we see in the movie?

DAMON : Well, I would love to be able to travel somewhere without having to actually get on a plane. I mean I love the idea of walking through a doorway and being somewhere else. I think that that would probably change the planet in wonderful and nightmarish ways. But I think that there are a lot of sort of dream concepts in this movie. And that was one of the things that attracted me was getting a chance to glimpse those things. Of course, you sit there and talk about all the things that you could put on screen and that’s a wonderful pie in the sky moment of any movie.

And that’s usually very early. And then pretty soon you have to get down to the sobering reality after binging all my on what it could be, ha, ha. You know? And then you go, then you go, well wait a minute now that was great last night. I’m kind of hung over now but it’s two hours, we only get to spend this much money and we have a story to tell which means we can’t spend two hours just going, woohoo. So………

BRAD : Sure we can. Why not?

DAMON : But so you have to start saying what ideas are central to the story that you’re trying to tell. And sometimes your favorite notions don’t fit into the story you’re trying to tell. So you save that for another day.

Q : Can you tell us more about the discovery of the 1952 box and how that inspired you in the movie?

 

DAMON : Yes, you know, I will say that the origin –. The more that we look into you know, what the origins of the box are and where it came from and who found it, the less –, you know, the less defined answers that we get. Suffice to say we became fairly convinced looking through it that we didn’t know exactly what it was. The items in it could have been you know, probably 80% of them were completely and totally uninteresting.

But the ones that were interesting to us felt like, what if we were kids in third grade and someone put this box in front of us and said, tell us a story about the things that you find in this box. How would they all connect? And we took some things like the design for the, it’s a small world ride and Flushing Meadows in 64. And this weird kind of like disk that might have been an animation that Orson Welles might have had some interest in. And we sort of said, what if Walt Disney was a member of this secret group of geniuses plus ultra.

And tomorrowland itself was actually a cover for a real place that they built in an alternate dimension? And then we were kind of off to the races. And the box became just sort of you know, a part of the…..the santa myth. It became sort of the North Pole but we were more focused on trying to leave presents under people’s trees. Bad metaphor but, Santa is real…. Sorry, yeah. Should we –, I like working around clockwise.

Truvia Sweetened Vanilla Almond Milk Strawberry Banana Smoothie

I’m a Truvia Ambassador.

I know that I could make my own almond milk, I’ve actually read the directions and have the right kind of juicer to make my own almond milk but it is a lot of trouble. Or rather I’m just so darn busy it’s much easier to by almond milk from the store. However, there is a big difference in the amount of calories between sweetened almond milk and unsweetened almond milk. I hate letting my kids sweeten their milk, or at least I used to hate it. Now I’m ok with them doing it because we use the Truvia Packets. Made from the sweetest part of the stevia leaf, it tastes wonderful and delivers a promise of zero-calories. Truvía® natural sweetener can help support a low or reduced calorie diet when used on fruit or in your favorite drinks. And unlike other stevia products on the market, it’s great-tasting every time. Including in this Almond Milk Strawberry Banana Smoothie! It’s cool and refreshing, perfect for starting your summer!

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Silk Almond Milk Strawberry Smoothie Recipe

Ingredients:

1 cup Silk Vanilla Almond Milk
2 ripe bananas
4 cups whole frozen strawberries
2 cups of ice
1 Truvia Packet

Directions:

Put all ingredients in blender with the ice being the last ingredient you add. Blend on high for 30 seconds or until the smoothie is of desired consistency.

 

To keep up with Truvia on-line follow them on Pinterest, Facebook and Twitter and www.truvia.com/baking

I’m an ambassador for Truvia and compensated for my time, my opinions are always my own.

5 Foods That Might Improve Eyesight

Guest Post

When I was shopping for designer sunglasses for women with my daughter the other day, she asked me what she needed to do to avoid wearing glasses like some of her friends. I had a lightbulb moment and came up with this reply: Eat right for great eyesight. That should be a saying from now on, and I’m calling dibs on it. Not only does it rhyme, but it makes complete sense. My daughter thought it was cool and swore she would eat her greens as soon as we got home.

Remember the saying about men, food and their stomach? Well, let’s change it up a bit and use: The way to better eyesight for all of us is through the stomach. There are no creams or sprays you can just squirt in your eyes so they get the vitamins and nutrients they need to function properly. Your eyes need you to eat healthy for them to be healthy. Here are the foods you should seriously consider eating or supplementing with (if applicable) to keep your peepers fresh, healthy and age proof.

1. Black Currant

Black Currants contain a bucket load of anthocyanins, roughly 190-270 mg per 100 grams – the highest concentration found in nature. They’re also high in essential fatty acids that help with inflammation. Anthocyanins are flavonoids that have a myriad of health benefits when consumed, the most important ones being the ability to decrease capillary permeability and fragility as well as membrane strengthening. If you’re looking for eye superfood, get your hands on black currant. You can eat them raw or supplement with black currant oil. Just don’t supplement with black currant flavored vodka.

2. Kale, Spinach and other Veggies

Green, leafy vegetables like kale and spinach have loads of lutein and zeaxanthin, which are essential nutrients of for the eyes because both of them are found in your macula, the small central part of your retina responsible for clear and detailed vision. Both lutein and zeaxanthin are carotenoids called xanthophylls which give some plants their yellow-orange color. Carrots, papaya, corn and squash are also rich in carotenoids, especially beta-carotene, that’s converted into Vitamin A when consumed and is good for our eyes.

3. Bilberries

If you can’t get your hands on black currant, another berry high in anthocyanins is bilberry. Though not as potent as black currant, bilberries still pack a mean punch when it comes to eye health, with one study showing that long-term supplementation with bilberry extract is effective in the prevention of age-related macular degeneration and cataracts.

4. Egg Yolks

Egg yolks are also rich in lutein and zeaxanthin, albeit in lesser quantities when compared to kale and spinach. One thing going for egg yolks is that the nutrients will be absorbed faster, as long as you consume it raw. If you want to take the raw route, consider looking for organic or free range sources for your eggs.

5. Salmon, Tuna and other fatty fish

Fatty fish contain omega-3 fatty acids that our cells need to function properly. Our eyes benefit from omega-3 consumption as well, because this wonder supplement has been known to decrease the risk and onset of age-related macular degeneration, an eye disease that affects people over 50 years old that can lead to diminished vision when left untreated. A lot of fish nowadays are contaminated with high amounts of mercury due to the increased toxicity of our oceans, so check the source of the fish first before you buy. Wild Alaskan salmon are a good choice.

Another benefit of eating seafood or supplementing with salmon derived omega-3 capsules is because of astaxanthin, a potent anti-oxidant more powerful than lutein and zeaxanthin. Astaxanthin is produced by microalgae Haematococcus pluvialis when it needs to protect itself from UV radiation when its water dries out. The only sources for this anti-oxidant are the microalgae and the sea creatures that eat them, such as salmon, krill and some shellfish. Astaxanthin has many benefits, including protective benefits that slow or even prevent blindness associated with cataracts, glaucoma and age-related macular degeneration.

Looking Back

Growing up, my parents always made it a point that we eat right. Our dinner table always had greens and fruit. They would explain the benefits of each food and why we needed to eat them. Of course, there were times that I hated it, especially the Brussels sprouts, but looking back I am so thankful that my folks instilled dietary common sense into us at an early age. I still have 20/20 vision because of my past diet, and now it’s my turn to educate my kids on the importance of food and eyesight.

6 Signs You Might Need an Eye Doctor

Partnered Guest Post

When was the last time you took your busy, mommy-self to an eye doctor for an exam? If you can’t remember when (or if) you ever went to see one, you’re 30 – 40 years old and your family has a history of glaucoma and diabetes, now is the perfect time to make an appointment. Most eye problems happen with no pain whatsoever, so it’s absolutely critical that you know what the signs and symptoms are so you can take the necessary steps to care for your precious peepers.

1. Eye Strain. This is one of the most common eye problems, with a reported 70% of adults complaining of eyestrain after spending five or more hours in front of a computer. Eyestrain is characterized by dry and fatigued eyes that only feel comfortable when closing the eyelids. This can cause dull headaches and minor pain/discomfort due to the eyes lacking fluid for lubrication.

2. Headaches. Regular headaches can be an underlying symptom of a vision problem. Patients rarely notice a sudden change in their vision because A) they’re in denial about possible vision problems and B) it happens gradually. Frequent headaches can be a sign that there’s something wrong with your vision.

3. Blurred Vision. If you’ve had sudden blurred vision for no reason that cleared up just as fast, ask yourself why you had it in the first place. Blurred vision can be sign of glaucoma, age related macular degeneration (ARMD), uveitis or even a torn retina. Vision loss in one eye may be a symptom of a mild stroke, so have yourself checked asap if you’re suffering from blurred vision.

4. Flashes of light, floaters or obstruction of vision. If you suddenly experience visual disturbances such as floaters or flashes, have someone drive you to see an optometrist, ophthalmologist or seek emergency care immediately, within the next 24 hours. These can be a sign of serious, vision-threatening disorders such as retinal detachment, a retinal hole or a retinal tear.

5. Light Sensitivity. If you suddenly feel like your eyes belong to Dracula and can’t keep them open even in indirect sunlight, it’s time to find an optometrist and get your eyes checked. Light sensitivity can be a symptom of an eye disorder or you may even have an eye infection.

6. Red Eye. Conjunctivitis or “pink eye” can give you two irritated eyes that are close to red, but these are usually non-threatening and go away on its own. The common cold can also give you two red eyes. But if you have one extremely red and painful eye, get yourself checked immediately, because this can be a sign of deeper inflammation, such as scleritis or uveitis. Scleritis is the inflammation of the outer protective barrier of the eye, while uveitis is the inflammation and swelling of the middle coating of the eyeball.

7. Persistent Eye Discomfort. When you work in an environment with a lot of small flying particles and one happens to enter your eye, dip it in some water to get the foreign particle out. If you feel persistent discomfort, like something is still in your eye, you should go and have your eyes checked.

We only have one pair of eyes and they simply cannot be replaced, so please take good care of your peepers! If you feel any of the signs and symptoms coming on strong, or if you haven’t had a check-up for more than two years, schedule an eye exam as soon as possible. Early detection is crucial to treating preventable eye disorders such as glaucoma and ARMD. Remember, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure!

How Disney Archives Help Make Movies #TomorrowlandEvent

One thing I love more than anything is finding out how a movie is made and with a history as rich and deep as Disney they leave no stone unturned when it comes to making them. I think I’ve only been in the Disney Archives three times total, it’s not something they share very often but every time it’s amazing and I learn something new. This time I learned about how the archives helped movie makers make the movie Tomorrowland and we saw a few things from opening day of Disneyland. Disneyland is going to be celebrating it’s 60th anniversary this year, it’s pretty exciting.

 

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The Disney Archives keep everything. They have more history than most studios here in Hollywood have. So when they are asked to help they say sure what do you need. The story of “Tomorrowland” started with a box labeled “1952,” supposedly discovered by accident in the Disney Studios archive. The mystery box contained all sorts of fascinating models and blueprints, photographs and letters related to the inception of Tomorrowland and the 1964 World’s Fair. Lindelof was excited by the find and recalls, “I began to imagine that the contents of the box were a guide to a secret story that nobody knew.  But if so, what would that story be? And the most obvious answer to me was that there really was a place called Tomorrowland that was not a theme park but existed somewhere in the real world.”

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Lindelof began to develop the story by researching the history of Disney and its originator, which led to research on the company’s involvement in the 1964 World’s Fair. “Walt Disney was a futurist in that real mid-century modernist sense,” says Lindelof. “He was very optimistic. He believed that technology held the key to building a better world. He also believed in technology as a means of creating great entertainment. For the 1964 World’s Fair, the Walt Disney Company created three rides, the It’s a Small World ride being the one we remember most. Though quaint by today’s standards, back in 1964, Carousel of Progress and Great Moments with Mr. Lincoln were revolutionary in how they used robotics and ride technology to create a thematically rich experience.”   20150507_171325682_iOS

The people that work in the Archives offices are amazing and Disney fanatics. They love getting their hands in the information and you can see and hear their passion as they tell their stories. But I can’t blame them because seeing the history the pictures and everything is just so awesome and inspiring. Walt Disney was a true innovator. He made a difference and was always looking to push the edges of technology as far as he could. He made changes environmentally and started preservation projects before it was even cool to do so.

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Bird adds, “One of Disney’s quotes was, ‘I don’t make movies to make money; I make money to make movies.’ Was he a perfect guy? No. But when you look at how much he accomplished in his lifetime it’s just staggering. So I view him as an innovator. He had a very proactive and positive view of the future. I like to think that this film is something that he would enjoy.” 

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Going to the archives and hearing these stories and seeing the artifacts reminds me of stories my grandmother used to tell me about herself and when she went to Disneyland. She had her own artifacts and memories and it’s these rich memories that really make stories stand out.

Tomorrowland is in theaters Friday May 22.

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Truvia Chocolate Cookies Recipe

 

I am a Truvia Ambassador.

Truvia baking blend is designed for easy, at-home baking, and is a blend of Truvia® natural sweetener and sugar. Truvia® Baking Blend provides sugar-like taste and texture in recipes, but with 75% fewer calories and twice the amount of sweetness than sugar. Truvia® Baking Blend is available at retail stores nationwide in a 1.5 pound bag with a closeable, easy-to-use pour spout. I love how easy it is to store and pour.

Designed for easy, at-home baking, new Truvia® Brown Sugar Blend is a blend of Truvia® natural sweetener and brown sugar. It provides brown-sugar-like taste and texture in recipes, and is the only brown sugar product that offers 75% fewer calories than brown sugar per serving.

This month I came up with a Chocolate Cookie recipe!

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Truvia Chocolate Cookies Recipe

Ingredients

½ cup butter
1/2 cup Truvia baking blend
1 egg (lightly beaten)
½ teaspoon vanilla
1 cup all purpose flour
½ cup unsweetened cocoa
½ teaspoon baking soda

Instructions

Preheat the oven to 350 F Spray your cookie sheet with nonstick spray Cream your butter and sugar until fluffy Add the egg and vanilla and mix until smooth Then mix in the flour, cocoa and baking soda Roll the dough into balls about the size of a walnut and space them apart Bake for 10 to 12 minutes Let cook on a baking sheet for 5 minutes and then transfer to wire rack to cool completely

 

To keep up with Truvia on-line follow them on Pinterest, Facebook and Twitter and www.truvia.com/baking

I’m an ambassador for Truvia and compensated for my time, my opinions are always my own.

The Amazing Britt Robertson Spills What Co-Stars Were Like #TomorrowlandEvent

Tomorrowland’s cast is full of super strong characters and the actors that play them were matched in such an exact way it was unreal. Britt Robertson is well spoken, smart and hopeful. She’s full of talent and has been quite busy as an actress.  Robertson was recently seen in “Delivery Man,” where she played Vince Vaughn’s daughter, and “Cake,” opposite Jennifer Anniston. She also starred in “The First Time,” which premiered in the 2012 Sundance Competition and sold to Sony. She played a cameo role in the feature film “Scream 4.”  

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In Tomorrowland she plays the main character Casey Newton a girl that believes she can make a difference. We had the chance to sit down with Britt and talk about her thoughts on the movie Tomorrowland which is out in theaters this Friday May 22. It’s a great family film. And she even shared her incites into her similarities with her character.

 

Q : How much of you is there in Casey? Similarities, differences. 

BRITT:  I think her mindset is very different from mine. Not so much anymore because I, I’ve adopted a lot of her traits and characteristics because I like her and I think she’s, she’s a cool chick, um, but before, prior to this movie, you know, I, I always looked at the future and being this ominous thing, you know, and uh, and it, and it was kind of daunting in this day and age to be so young in this world knowing what it could bring and, and, and the circumstances, you know.

Everything that’s going in, it’s, it’s pretty intense so then once I read the script and I, I realized so many things that I hadn’t before.. and I just totally went off topic and …and off track. The experience because of Brad and like, you know, that group. Everyone was supporting me so much, um, it, it was just, it was a fantastic experience. I can’t say enough about it. I feel like I’m constantly like, word vomiting great things. [LAUGHS]

Q : Could you tell us a little bit about your audition process?

BRITT: In two thousand thirteen… I had like multiple auditions from November to July. I first sent in, in a tape from New York in November and then I went in for Brad Bird a few times and for the casting people and then right around May they brought me in to do like a full, like a full read with Brad and then at that point they, flew me to Vancouver to actually do a screen test with Raffey Cassidy who plays Athena. And then from that point, like a week later they told me that I got the part.

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Q : What did you feel, you know, what, what was the thought? What was the thought, you know, when you were actually okay, here’s your role. It’s yours.

 

BRITT: When they told me that that I was Casey? It was, I mean, to be honest with you, it was like really, it was kind of an, an overwhelming moment. It’s something that I, I still remember in my mind as being like the most euphoric feeling that I’ve ever had. Um, because I was, I was happy and I was like elated and I was crying and I was just so excited. It was such a cool movie to be a part of and I loved the story so much and also just the people attached to it. It, I just knew that it was going to be a changing point for me in terms of career.

But also as an opportunity, um, you know, to be part of this movie was like, it’s just a deal.

 

Q: What did you think of the script?

BRITT: Um, you know, it was something about when you read the script and the story, you, you know, the story itself is a, is a really sweet, it’s an original idea and it’s something that I had never thought about because the themes of the movie, it really covers future and how we look at our future and how, um, as a society, we can actually influence our future and make it the world that we want to live in and, and I thought that that was a really powerful message and especially for a young woman to be the lead in a movie like this was, was really cool for me.

Q : How did you feel about being the hero of the movie?

BRITT: Well…. it’s a great it’s a really great thing, um, to be like the hero of, of a movie like this. You know, a Disney film and, and to be a young woman and, and carry a movie like that, I, I found it really intimidating and um, but luckily Brad Bird was, he’s such a wonderful human being and he’s a family man, you know. He, he understands people on a very real level, so I think he gave me the encouragement to, to be brave and just, um, take it one day at a time. So that was I wasn’t too overwhelmed by being the hero, you know.

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Q : What was it like for you to work with George?

BRITT: Working with George, you know, I, going into it, you have all the expectations of like, you know, a person like that. A movie star and what that means and, and for me, you know, if I was a , if I was George Clooney, I, I don’t know that I would be able to handle it as well as he has and that was what was so surprising to me is, is being able to be around him and see how he’s just completely himself. Like, he hasn’t been lost in, in the process of becoming George Clooney.

He, he’s still the person that he wants to be and, and, and that’s, um, you know, working with him, it made me realize you can still be who you want to be in this industry. You don’t have to be tainted by uh, the process or the people. It’s just, um, you know, he, he’s so professional and I, I just learned a lot from him.

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Q : How was it working with Tim McGraw?

BRITT: So cool. It was, I mean, I love Tim McGraw like nobody’s business.  I’ a huge country fan. I, I, in fact, when I first met him, I, I attacked him. I was like you have no idea how much I love you. I love your music, I love your wife, I think you’re the coolest, um, but he was such a sweet man and he’s like a, again, he’s like a family man. He’s, um, you know, he has three daughters and just hearing his stories about his daughters was really sweet and I got to pretend I was his daughter for a second, so that was nice.

Q : How about when you had to drink all the Coke? Tell us about that.

BRITT: I was so excited for that scene because Coca Cola’s like my favorite thing. ….No. I’m still drinking it which is astonishing to myself, but um, yeah, I, think I went through maybe ten or eleven full Coca Colas and um, because yeah, you’re shooting. I mean, we’re doing so many different angles and we’re doing it a lot of times and I just thought that I’d be able to handle it because I drink a lot of Coca Cola in my life, so um, but then after like ten or eleven, it started to hit and my, my belly was like full from all the liquid, so it it was not, it wasn’t going down anymore.

It was not going down. It was coming up, um, so we had to like take little breaks and uh, and then they, they sort of um, fixed it so that I would only have to do a few more takes after that, but um, I, it was a lot of Coca Cola.

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Q : What about working with Hugh Laurie?

Britt: Oh, Hugh Laurie is just such a gem. I remember being in the, in the makeup trailer with him because I was often there um when he was getting his, going through hair and makeup and wardrobe and uh, and he would be there and, and every day it was just like a new fun fact about life, but not even a fun fact. He would give you like stories and um, and theories on life. Like he’s really informed uh, of everything that’s going on, so I, I sort of looked at him like a book of knowledge, you know, and, and he’s also really talented. I would love playing music in the trailer and just like hearing him you know, appreciating it so much.

And he played the piano at a bar when we were in Vancouver at one point. Uh, you know, because he plays the piano. He’s very talented, musically, and uh, and I remember asking him like when can I go? Can I go? Can I see you? I want to see you perform and um, and the one day that I could’ve have gone because we were shooting, uh, I ended up having to stay for like stunt training or something, but I, I, I will get to him one day. I’ve got to go to one of his shows. And I would encourage you all to go to one of his shows if you can. He’s incredible.

 

Tomorrowland is in theaters May 22.