Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Review of Ex Machina

Last weekend the DH and I watched Ex Machina. Here is a spoiler free review: Those interested in a thought provoking journey will enjoy this movie. My head was swimming after watching and I wanted time to think about the movie before discussing

Caution spoilers ahead!

Brief thoughts: Why did the AI have to go and do that? 

In depth review: Ex Machina is a journey into our not too distant future. The movie presents a possible scenario in the coming creation of AI. 

The story follows Caleb, a typical geeky computer programmer for an internet search giant, Bluebook. Caleb wins a contest and travels to the CEO, Nathan's house as his prize. Once there Caleb discovers he is to test Ava, an AI by Turing test. 

The movie unfolds in a disturbing manner to me as there is not much description of sequence of events. The story is told in a very visual way and no clues are given about what may be to come (or at least none that I picked up on). Nathan is a very grating character to me as his personality is very jarring. I feel sorry for Caleb winning a trip to the CEO's house because Nathan is neither nice or forthcoming with information about what is going on out in the middle of now where. 

Ok let's just talk about middle of now where, which happens to be very gorgeous. I really enjoyed the scenes where they are outside. Especially epic, for a geologist is the when they hike up the rock face, to the to the glaciers. The house/compound is a modern marvel. I would love to own it. The use of glass in such a setting makes it seem like you are one with nature. I found myself wishing I could own this as a vacation home (in my dreams). 

As the movie progresses Caleb begins to get to know Ava (AI) better and test her. When he starts watching her on the CCTV I found it very creepy. By the end of the movie Caleb has become totally brainwashed by Ava. I don't even think he knows if he is human anymore. 

The ending is pulled off very well. Nathan who always seems to be one step ahead of Caleb has been outsmarted by Caleb. Nathan is toast because of Caleb's forethought, Caleb gets trapped in the decisions he has made, and Ava is free to roam the world to my horror. 

When the scene cuts to Ava at an intersection I feared what could be next for the world with an unkown AI on the loose who had no guilt or who can only simulate emotion to manipulate those that do (us!).

After pondering it for a few days I am glad I watched Ex Machina and give it 4/5 for being a new and different kind of sci-fi movie.

Sunday, July 26, 2015

Pesto pucks

Earlier this summer we harvested our carrots. Instead of letting the tops go to waste I decided to use them to make pesto. The ingredients used are cilantro (from the garden), carrot tops (from the garden), olive oil, garlic, pine nuts, and parmesan cheese. You can add salt as well but be careful as I added too much.

I used the ninja to mix all the ingredients. Then I put the pesto mix into silicon baking cups and put them in the freezer.

After a few hours I removed the pesto pucks from the freezer and into a plastic bag.

We have so far used the pesto pucks to make chicken pesto pasta. Yum!

Friday, July 17, 2015

Art after 5

Yesterday a happy hour was hosted on the rooftop of the OKC art museum. I had skipped a few previous happy hours so I wanted to attend. The temperature outside almost had me re-thinking that decision.
After work I stopped at the library quick to pick up a book on hold and then dropped my purse off at the car. The rooftop was scorching when we all arrived. I had a great time socializing and then went down to explore the art.

Look what I found!
Work from another roof

Chiuly Glass sculpture

Purple spikes

Wilky Wonka?

Glass hallway, my new home

Vase on the ceiling

Lavender Cylinder 

Boat and Balls Oh my!

Holy Boatman!
I had a great time viewing the other art as well. Except maybe the modern and abstract art....not too sure about those. The Faberge collection was interesting as well but I was not about to take a picture in there, too many witnesses.

Earlier in the day we had some excitement because the President was in town. See my cheesy video below of the view from work.

Snipers on the roof
On to a great weekend.

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Taking care of business

Well this week is slowly sliding on by. My family is in Myrtle Beach and I get to hear all about the fun they are having while I am still at work. Yuck.

In a few weeks I will get some time off to visit friends in Houston. I am really looking forward to going to a wedding dress fitting and seeing the baby!

I have started exercising more regularly and trying to keep myself calm. I am hoping the exercise helps with regulating my hormones and relieving stress.

Look for another book review soon.

Sunday, July 12, 2015

Zoo, rock garden, & sick puppy

This last week has been a dozy. Coda, our 6 lbs Yorkie, was sick. He started showing symptoms on Wednesday with puking and diarrhea. He continued to act up so we took him to the vet on Friday for exam and fluids. It turns out the vet thinks he had HGE. The test results came back as high on HCT but not needing hospitalization. We do not want to go there again. 
Tuesday night feeling sick
Sat. morning starting to feel better
 Coda is on anti-biotics and has nausea and diarrhea medication. He is loving life as he is getting chik-fil-a with pills.

On Saturday morning we went to the zoo. We arrived a little later than I would have liked but it was still fun. The temperature really starting heating up fast. There were a lot of families with very small children and lots of crying etc. Oh the joys of being a parent. Here are some highlights of the day.
Peacock being shy

New baby elephant

Parakeet time

After we got home I took a brief nap. Being out in the sun really tired me out. I got to work on the front entry way. I envisioned a rock garden with a bench outside the front door. Here is what the front entry way looks like. 

Front planter before
Front planter currently

Today I am going to work on putting down more landscaping paper in the front and working on the kitchen cabinet doors.

On another note David prepared the wine and I got to taste. The flavor has mellowed a bit and I would describe it as tart. The wine is crystal clear and a beautiful color.

Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Review of "Jim Cramer's get rich carefully" audiobook by Jim Cramer

Brief Summary: Jim Cramer relates in his signature voice his formula for getting rich slowly.

Long Review:  Jim Cramer's Get Rich Carefully really tested my patience. If you can only handle Jim  Cramer's voice in small doses this is not the audio book for you. I almost threw the  cd's out the window after about 1 cd. 

Now on to the content. The book may have useful advice if you have the time to do the research. He says it is simple but goes on to explain too many rules and to much research for a working person to do in my opinion. At first I thought the rules were going to be simple but they turned into a mess. I also feel like he contradicted himself about his rules.

The basic jist of the book to me is this, after the great recession, there is no way to accurately predict the market but Jim Cramer's advice may help you to invest more solidly and get rich carefully.

Review of "Thrifty gardening from the ground up" by Marjorie Harris

Brief Summary: Thrify gardening from the ground up describes the basic gardening practices and plants for a new gardener.

Long Review: Overall I enjoyed reading Thrifty Gardening from the Ground Up. The principles outlined in the book have made me think more about our garden being new homeowners. We didn't follow the first rule and make sure our soil was prepared before planting anything. We will definitely need to work on preparing our soil better this fall and winter. The book doesn't outline money saving tips but instead offers advice on how to spend money most wisely. Money is outlined as to be spent over several years preparing the garden how you planned. The plan for the garden is also outlined as very important. Watering is brought up as a practice most people do incorrectly and was very informative.

Overall I appreciated the overview this book gave me on best practices in the garden and inspiration for the garden in our new home. I would recommend reading this book if you are interested in seeing your home garden in a new light.

Monday, July 6, 2015

Boating on the Fourth of July at Lake Heffner

On the Fourth of July a friend from work was so kind as to take my DH and I out on his boat. We decided to go early in the morning to beat the crowds and heat. We accidentally beat the wind as well. At 8 am we arrived with doughnuts to very little wind. We puttered around the lake for about an hour until the wind picked up. We stayed out for another couple of glorious hours.
Supposed to be Titanic moment,
but alas I didn't want to fall in.
Driving the boat

I enjoyed sailing and hope to go again soon. I am considering buying a kayak for a great and relaxing upper body workout.

Sunday, July 5, 2015

Robbers Cave state park

In order to start the Fourth of July weekend off right we decided to go for a hike. We decided on Robbers Cave State Park in Southeast Oklahoma.
We woke up at the crack of dawn in order to get to the park before it was too hot. We arrived around 9:30 am. The entrance to the park was not labeled on Google maps very well. After a few miles of searching we found the entrance and a bathroom!
We checked out the information center which was sadly out of maps. We headed back North in the direction of the cave trail.
We finally found the trail to the cave and hiked up to the cave and enjoyed the scenic views. The hike was hard on my ankle which was still pretty sore.

After climbing back down we found another mountain trail that would have taken us past cliffs along the lake. This sounded fun but we were already hot and my ankle was tired. We decided to see if there was a shorter trail. We drove to the other side of the park without finding any other trails we were interested in and we were starting to get hungry.
We divided to head to Angela's diner to get some great burgers. The food was good the decor and  music were typical of a 50's diner. The diner was a nice stop for lunch on the way back up 69 to 40.
On the way back we saw the lakes at record levels and the many boaters heading out for the weekend. We also saw an accident still be cleaned up from the morning when we headed back West. The tractor trailer looked like it had blow a tire, veered off the road and lost a very heavy load. I hope the driver was fine.
All in all it was a very good day and I would t mind going camping at Robbers Cave in the future.

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

PSA drain cleaning

Dearest internet friends,

If in the near future you will be buying a house please head this warning. Clean out your drains and S pipes when you move in!
We did not and now have two new things added to the list to do this holiday weekend.

The water had been taking longer and longer to drain out of the master bathroom sink. Being the do it yourself kind I thought "what the hey I will clean out the S bend pipe." I got it torn apart and let me tell you for a girl who is not squeamish I almost lost my dinner. I couldn't even bring myself to take a picture. Just imagine decomposing hair covered in slimy stuff, wait don't.

After grabbing the baby bottle brush I previously used for juicing and cleaning the pipe I couldn't remove I reassembled the sink.

Guess what? It still isn't draining properly. This weekend we get to snake the pipe after the s-bend to find the clog. We will be doing both bathrooms and the master shower. Ahh font tell the hubs it is a surprise.

Oh and if you know how to get stain not to bleed through cabinets I would be grateful if you left a comment. We have sanded, painted white, re-sanded, painted with kilz and re-painted. Whatever is bleeding through keeps coming! Auck! Help!