It’s Emmy Weekend!

22 Aug

Yup, you guessed it, Amazon affiliate links.

It’s here! It’s here! It’s Emmy weekend! I’m trying to focus on the positive – a whole weekend to prep for the Emmys – instead of the negative – are you freaking kidding me with the show starting at 5:00pm PDT? Because hi, Television Academy, some of us have jobs and we can’t sit around all day on a Monday obsessing over red carpet arrivals. Being hyper-critical of women who look far better than I ever will is a favorite pastime of mine. How am I supposed to decide which 95 lb actress looks fat if I can’t watch the 360 cam?

But enough of my whining. Because Emmy weekend is the perfect time to catch up on all the nominated shows you haven’t had time to watch yet! On breaks from binge watching #EverySimpsonsEver, you can binge watch other shows! I should totally be a life coach.

You can see all the nominees at Emmys.com. I’m not listing them all here because there are a ton, and what do I look like, Variety? But here are a few of my favorite nominated shows that I think you should take a look at this weekend if you haven’t already.

Scandal
Outstanding Guest Actress in a Drama Series
Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series
Outstanding Guest Actor in a Drama Series

Parks and Recreation
Outstanding Lead Actress In A Comedy Series

Mom
Outstanding Supporting Actress In A Comedy Series

The Big Bang Theory
Outstanding Comedy Series
Outstanding Art Direction For A Contemporary Program (Half-Hour Or Less)
Outstanding Guest Actor in a Comedy Series
Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series
Outstanding Multi-Camera Picture Editing For A Comedy Series
Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series
Outstanding Technical Direction, Camerawork, Video Control For A Series

Mob City
Outstanding Hairstyling For A Miniseries Or A Movie
Outstanding Sound Editing For A Miniseries, Movie Or A Special
Outstanding Special And Visual Effects In A Supporting Role

Orange is the New Black
Outstanding Guest Actress In A Comedy Series
Outstanding Guest Actress In A Comedy Series
Outstanding Guest Actress In A Comedy Series
Outstanding Lead Actress In A Comedy Series
Outstanding Single-camera Picture Editing For A Comedy Series
Outstanding Single-camera Picture Editing For A Comedy Series
Outstanding Single-camera Picture Editing For A Comedy Series
Outstanding Supporting Actress In A Comedy Series
Outstanding Casting For A Comedy Series
Outstanding Writing for a Comedy Series
Outstanding Comedy Series
Outstanding Directing For A Comedy Series

Brooklyn Nine-Nine
Outstanding Stunt Coordination For A Comedy Series Or A Variety Program
Outstanding Supporting Actor In A Comedy Series

Fargo
Outstanding Directing For A Miniseries, Movie Or A Dramatic Special
Outstanding Sound Mixing For A Miniseries Or A Movie
Outstanding Directing For A Miniseries, Movie Or A Dramatic Special
Outstanding Supporting Actor In A Miniseries Or A Movie
Outstanding Lead Actor In A Miniseries Or A Movie
Outstanding Supporting Actress In A Miniseries Or A Movie
Outstanding Lead Actor In A Miniseries Or A Movie
Outstanding Writing for a Miniseries, Movie or a Dramatic Special
Outstanding Makeup For A Miniseries Or A Movie (Non-Prosthetic)
Outstanding Miniseries
Outstanding Music Composition For A Miniseries, Movie Or A Special (Original Dramatic Score)
Outstanding Single-Camera Picture Editing For A Miniseries Or A Movie
Outstanding Casting For A Miniseries, Movie Or A Special
Outstanding Single-Camera Picture Editing For A Miniseries Or A Movie
Outstanding Cinematography For A Miniseries Or Movie
Outstanding Single-Camera Picture Editing For A Miniseries Or A Movie
Outstanding Cinematography For A Miniseries Or Movie
Outstanding Sound Editing For A Miniseries, Movie Or A Special

Who are your favorite nominees this year? Will you be watching the show live or setting your DVR and then cursing traffic on your way home from work?

Mark Your Calendar: CHOC Walk

20 Aug

The Children’s Hospital of Orange County is having their annual CHOC Walk to support their life-saving research and treatment for children in Southern California and beyond. So save the date, Sunday, October 12 at Disneyland.

This is a cause that’s near and dear to my heart. I’ve toured children’s research hospitals before, and it’s always a powerful and moving experience. You all know I don’t like to get all emotional, so I’ll just say that this work is amazing and desperately needed. And cancer research ain’t cheap. That’s where you come in. At the CHOC Walk.

The CHOC Walk is a 5K that winds through Disneyland and California Adventure. You’ll have your favorite Disney characters cheering you on, and there will be amazing photo ops along the course. Best of all, I’ve been promised I won’t have to run and can wear a tiara. I made up that part about the tiara. But I’m still wearing one.

An expected 800 teams made up of 15,000 walkers will join in the 5K, getting a sneak peak of the magic before the parks open to the public. The walk will end in Downtown Disney, where sponsors, shops, and restaurants will have special offers for walkers. So basically, you can wear a tiara, walk, shop, eat, AND raise money to fund life-saving treatment and research. That’s winning all around.

Last year’s CHOC Walk raised more than $2 million, and since 1990 the walks have raised more than $23 million. What say we blow this out of the water this year, eh? I’m starting a team for bloggers, and I want YOU. Or your money. Well, really both. If you’re local, I would LOVE for you to join Blogging While Walking. Each walker must raise a minimum of $50. I just went ahead and donated $50, because it’s easier, and I’m lazy. If you’re not local, I will take your money. You can donate to Blogging While Walking here. :) (That team page is a work in a progress, bear with me.)

Be sure to keep up with all things CHOC Walk on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube using hashtag #chocwalk. If you’re not sure if you want to join the team, or have more questions, leave a comment or shoot me an email at anne@annehogan.net and I’ll get answers for you.

So who’s in?

Get Ready for The LA Feline Film Festival

18 Aug

*meow* Sponsored post *meow*

You guys, YOU GUYS, I cannot even handle how excited I am about this. The LA Feline Film Festival is coming. Presented by Organikat and the Walker Art Center, the festival will be on Sunday, September 21 from 1pm to 10pm at Christmas Tree Lane at Exposition Park in LA and is being hosted by Lil Bub and Tara the Hero Cat.

There is so much going on at this festival that I almost don’t know where to begin, so I’m going with bullet points.

  • Crazy Cat Costume Contest
  • Appearances by Lil Bub and Tara the Hero Cat
  • Cat Adoptions
  • Food Trucks
  • Live Music
  • Beer Tent
  • Feline-themed Exhibits
  • Fun Feline Vendors
  • CAT VIDEOS (duh)

And not just any cat videos, the web’s most watched cat videos, shown on an 80′ outdoor screen. Needless to say, I can’t wait. And yes, I WILL be wearing the famous space cat leggings.

If you want to go, tickets are available now and start at only $15! Cats are welcome, but must be on leash or in a carrier, and should be good with crowds and noise.

To help you get into the spirit, I’m giving away a gift basket filled with goodies from some of the festival’s great sponsors! There are coupons from Swheat Scoop for free products at your local pet store, catnip from Organikat, toys from Feline Yogi and magazines from Modern Cat Magazine!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Sponsored by LA Feline Film Fest.

I’ll Be the Woman in THAT Country Song

14 Aug

Disclaimer: I love the men of country music. Some of bro-country’s biggest offenders are some of my favorites. Blake Shelton, Luke Bryan, Jason Aldean, Thomas Rhett, love you boys, it’s all in good fun. ;) *blows kisses*

You all know that I’m a huge fan of Maddie & Tae and their new song “Girl in a Country Song” and I recently saw a Florida Georgia Line interview in the Chicago Tribune where they said:

“All I’m gonna say about that is, I don’t know one girl who doesn’t want to be a girl in a country song. That’s all I’m gonna say to you. That’s it.”

Well alrighty then. Between you and me, I think Florida Georgia Line needs to meet some new women. And that’s all I’m gonna say about that.

Because here’s the thing. The basic gist of most of these songs is “Hey girl, we just met because you were dancing barefoot at a bonfire, why don’t you get in my truck and we’ll spend the night driving around some dark country roads?”

Ummmm….. no. I have seen one too many episodes of Law & Order: Special Victims Unit for that to sound like a good idea.

New country song idea: “If a guy you met 10 seconds ago asks you to get in his truck, say no and maybe post a few geo-tagged Instagram pics just in case.”

So, if I don’t want to be your doe-eyed arm candy, then who do I want to be? Well I’m so glad you asked, because these fine men of country music have gotten it right, and I would have no problem being the woman in any of these country songs. Boys, take note.


“The Woman With You”, Kenny Chesney

Been juggling, struggling, closing big deals
Dancing backwards in high heels


“Hell Yeah”, Montgomery Gentry

She’s got an MBA and a plush corner office
She’s got a don’t mess with me attitude


“Tough”, Craig Morgan

She’s strong, pushes on, can’t slow her down
She can take anything life dishes out


“She Let Herself Go”, George Strait

When he said he didn’t love her no more,
She let herself go


“She’s Every Woman”, Garth Brooks

She’s anything but typical
She’s so unpredictable

(LOLOLOL if you think I’m gonna find a Garth Brooks video online.)


“He Stopped Loving Her Today”, George Jones

(I know this one doesn’t quite fit with my other tough as nails women, but this song always gets me.)

This time he’s over her for good
He stopped loving her today

Notice a theme here? The best of the best, the all time greatest men of country music, they know how to sing about a woman. ;) (Although the next time I do one of these, I’m picking songs with videos that are easier to find.)

Best Bags for Flying With Pets

12 Aug

There’s Amazon affiliate links here. I have to tell you that. You probably don’t care.

My little Bear is quite the traveler – in under three years he’s clocked twenty four flights for a total of about 30,000 miles. In all of those flights, I’ve used just about every combination of bags you can imagine. I put in the grunt work (and the pinched nerves) so you don’t have to, because I’ve found the perfect combination. Oh yeah, and just in case it’s not obvious, Teddy always flies in cabin with me.

Anyone who flies can tell you that you never check a bag, and even when I fly with Teddy I’m still not willing to waste that extra time and money at baggage claim. Teddy counts as one of my carry-ons, which means that I only get one bag. That’s right, no purse, no laptop bag, just ONE BAG. But it’s possible. In fact, I pride myself on being able to get myself, Teddy, liquids, and at least one laptop through security without breaking a stride. (More tips for that at the end of this post.)

First things first, you’ll need a carrier for your pet. Check with your airline for the exact dimensions required before buying a bag, please don’t just go by my word. After trying several different bags, I finally found one that works the best for me – the ARGO Action Petpack Carrier. Here’s my tour of this Teddy-approved bag:

Now, this bag has been discontinued. Because of course it has. But the Pet Gear I-GO2 Traveler Roller Backpack is similar. The most important thing to look for in a carrier is a backpack with heavily padded straps. Your pet may feel light at home, but after trekking through an airport with one of those duffel bag style carriers slung over one shoulder, it will feel like you’re carrying a Great Dane. The backpack really makes a huge difference – I don’t get pinched nerves anymore, and my neck/shoulders/back don’t hurt on arrival.

Next up: your bag. You need a bag that will fit all of your stuff while allowing you easy access to your phone, ID, e-reader, etc. Plus, it needs to be easy to maneuver, because when flying with a pet you really need to have everything as streamlined as possible. Enter the Elleven rolling backpack. (You’ll notice a giant Purina logo on mine. Yeah, I got it for free from Purina. But I would have paid probably any amount of money for this bag. I love it so much.)

This bag is perfect for long weekends, but I’m still searching for that mythical perfect week-long rolling bag.

Carrying on with the theme of this post, this bag isn’t readily available either. It looks like it’s a promo special, but you can order single blank bags from Leeds. The Elleven Compu-Backpack and the Other Elleven Compu-Backpack are pretty much the same bag, but they don’t roll. The High Sierra Freewheel and the California Pak Winder are very similar, but the low price makes me question the quality; I don’t know how well those would hold up to heavy travel.

So how’s that for a remarkably unhelpful post? But enough of my “this bag is great oh wait you can’t buy it” rambling. Here are some of my top tips for successfully flying with a pet.

1. Plan ahead, and know your pet’s schedule.

How often does your dog usually go out? How much water do they normally drink? How much and how often do they usually eat? Do your best not to disrupt this schedule too much. You will want to limit food and water before takeoff. (You don’t want to deal with dog diarrhea in an airport. Ask me how I know.) Check the airports you’ll be traveling through to see what kind of pet accommodations they have – most airports have a place where you can walk your dog. Make sure to bring some dry food, and a small cup for water, so you can offer them to your dog.

2. To drug or not to drug?

Talk to your vet before you fly with your pet. After talking to my vet, and knowing my dog, we decided that it would be best for Teddy to take a sedative before flying. He doesn’t take enough to knock him out, just enough to get him mellow and chill. He typically sleeps through the flight, and because he’s so drowsy he usually doesn’t want to eat or go to the bathroom.

3. Collars and leashes.

Even if your pet is microchipped (and they totally should be) you want to have a collar with tags on them while you’re traveling. And make sure to have your cell phone number on the tags. I personally have my cell and my Twitter handle on Teddy’s tags. When you go through security, you’ll have to take everything off your pet and carry them through the metal detector. In order to make this process go as fast as possible, you should already have your pet’s leash and harness off and stored in your bag. Have them wear either a loose collar that you can easily slide off their head, or a collar with a quick release that you can get off quickly.

4. The Security Line

This is where we separate the women from the girls. Getting through security with a pet requires a finely choreographed routine, planned in advance. Start before you get to the line. Make sure your laptop and liquids are easily accessible. Go ahead and take off your jacket and belt and put them in your bag. You know you’ll need your ID and boarding pass, so have those in your hand. After you hand them to the TSA agent, quickly store them in an easily accessible pocket in your bag. While you’re bent over, grab your liquids and your laptop. You’ll get a sense for the rhythm of the line, pause when the person in front of you pauses, move when you can, this way you’re not holding up anyone behind you. Now grab a bin, and put your laptop, liquids, and shoes in the bin. Do I really need to tell you to wear shoes that you can easily slip in and out of? Put your carry on on the belt, and swing your pet off of your back and onto the belt while unzipping the backpack. While you wait for the bags in front of you to go, remove your pet’s collar and put it in the bag while lifting your pet into your arms. It’s like an elegant dance. Once you’re through, grab everything and move to a bench. You can take your time getting situated again.

5. Getting on the Plane

Your pet will be under your seat, which means that your bag will be in the overhead bin. While you’re waiting on the jetway, go ahead and grab your book. When you get to your seat, put your book and your pet on the seat while you stow your bag. If there’s something else you need, you can get it out once you’re in the air and the fasten seatbelt sign is off. I like to keep my book with me so I have something to read before and during takeoff. You can also go ahead and grab your laptop and put it in the seat pocket if you want.

6. Keep Calm

Things probably will not go perfectly, especially the first time you fly with your pet. The first time I flew with Teddy, I broke one of my own rules and checked my bag to make things easier. It will be okay. Don’t get flustered, just take your time. Give yourself plenty of time to get to the airport before your flight, and make sure you reserve your pet’s spot when you book your ticket. To do that, call the airline’s reservation number and let them know that you’ll be flying with a pet. Airlines allow a limited number of pets on each flight, and you want to make sure your buddy gets on! Most airlines won’t let you pre-pay for a pet, so be ready to do that when you check in. You’ll also have to check in at the desk, not at a kiosk, so allow time for that.

Amazon items included in this post:


Do you have any questions about flying with an in-cabin pet? Ask away! And if you have any tips and tricks of your own, please share!