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The Garden Mix




Nationally renowned garden expert Melinda Myers helps everyday gardeners find success and ease in the garden through her Melinda’s Garden Moments radio segments. Melinda shares “must have” tips that hold the key to gardening success, learned through her more than 30 years of horticulture experience. Listeners from across the country find her gardener friendly, practical approach to gardening both refreshing and informative! On this page, Melinda shares some more extensive garden tips, which expand on the information provided in her one-minute radio segments.

New tips are added throughout each month, providing timely step-by-step tips on what you need to do next in your garden! Visit Melinda’s website www.melindamyers.com for more gardening tips, how-to videos, podcasts and answers to your questions.
Posts from September 2013


Transplanting Peonies
Looking to expand your peony collection, share a division with a friend or move an ill-placed plant? Fall is the best time to transplant peonies.
Wait for the leaves to yellow or be killed by frost before digging in. Use a shovel or spading fork to carefully dig up the root system. You can divide the clump into smaller pieces with at least three to five eyes per section.
Prepare the planting site by adding several inches of organic matter such as compost to the top 12 inches of soil. Dig a hole large enough to accommodate the roots. Place the rhizome, that’s the swollen underground stem, so it is no more than 1 to 2 inches below the soil surface.
Water the soil thoroughly to remove air pockets and ensure good root-to-soil contact.
Don't be alarmed if your peony fails to bloom the following spring. It will bloom the next year as long as it was properly planted.
 
A bit more information:  Peonies often fail to bloom the spring after transplanting. If the problem continues evaluate the growing conditions and your maintenance program. Rhizomes planted too deep, over fertilized, or placed in an area with heavy shade may fail to bloom. Correct the problem to ensure future flowering.
 
For more gardening tips, how-to garden videos, podcasts and more, visit www.melindamyers.com.
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Fall Décor for Your Landscape
The cooler temperatures of fall signal a change of season and an opportunity to add some fall décor to the landscape.

Garden centers are filled with fall favorites like pansies and mums, but you don’t need to stop there. Use straw bales to cover leggy perennials or mask unsightly foliage of powdery mildew infested beebalm or phlox. They also make nice stands for your potted mums and asters.
 
Use corn stalks and broom corn to frame an entryway or add vertical interest in the garden. Secure to a nearby post, tree trunk or sink a stake in the garden for support.
 
Set pumpkins and large ornamental squash in the garden amongst perennials or to cover fading summer annuals. One gardener allowed them to decompose in the garden and the next summer she had a great crop of bold leaves wandering through her perennials and squash of all sizes and colors brightening the fall garden.
 
A bit more information:  Once fall has passed put your straw bales to work in the winter landscape. Set the bales around planters filled with tender plants as they can provide root insulation.
 
For more gardening tips, how-to garden videos, podcasts and more, visit www.melindamyers.com.
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Plant a Few Minor Bulbs
Do something different this fall. Add a few of the smaller often underutilized bulbs, known as minor bulbs to your landscape.

Consider expanding the spring bulb season with early bloomers like snowdrops and winter aconites.
 
You can double your enjoyment by mixing minor bulbs with larger bulbs like tulips, daffodils and hyacinths. Or, plant two different types that bloom at the same time to double your bloom or combine two different bulbs with different bloom periods to extend your spring garden season.
 
Make sure the bulbs are suited to your climate and growing conditions.
 
Expand your selection by growing outside your zone. Northern gardeners can winter tender bulbs, like rain lilies, indoors for winter and plant outdoors in spring. Warm region gardeners can purchase pre-cooled bulbs or store those that need a chill in the fridge for at least 15 weeks.
 
A bit more information: Try using minor bulbs like crocus, squills and grape hyacinths in the lawn. Create a sea of color with crocus or faux rivers and pools of blue with squills and the grape hyacinths. Just make sure you want this for years to come; as anything that kills the bulbs will also kill your lawn.
 
For more gardening tips, how-to garden videos, podcasts and more, visit www.melindamyers.com.
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Edible Fall Containers
Make it beautiful and edible, fall garden containers, that is. Bright Light, Ruby Red and many other Swiss chard cultivars have colorful stems to brighten any fall combination.

Kale and collard greens also provide vertical interest in containers. Wild Garden Frills Russian Kale has blue-green frilled leaves while Lacinato has crinkled foliage.
 
Colorful leaf lettuce, mustard and other greens make great fillers. Redina and Sea of Red are just two of the many colorful leaf lettuce cultivars. Try Garden Ferns lettuce for something unique with a sweet delicate flavor. Red Cardinal and Red kitten spinaches have green leaves with red veins. Harvest throughout the fall for fresh-from-the-container-garden flavor.
 
Then add some cool season and edible flowers like pansies and calendula. They provide added color and flavor to fall meals.
 
A bit more information:  Harvest Swiss chard, kale and collards when the outer stems are 8 to 10 inches tall for the best flavor and to keep your container looking its best. Pick lettuce when the outer leaves are 4 to 6 inches tall.  Use healthy pesticide-free flowers as they just reach their maturity.
 
For more gardening tips, how-to garden videos, podcasts and more, visit www.melindamyers.com.
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Fall Lawn Care
Keep your lawn healthy and looking its best with proper fall lawn care. 

Keep mowing as long as the grass is growing. Mow high to encourage deep drought tolerant and pest resistant roots. Grow cool season grasses like bluegrass, fescue and ryegrass 2 ½  to 3 ½ inches tall.  Warm season grasses like bermudagrass, carpetgrass, centipedegrass and zoysia should be grown at 1 to 2 inches tall, while St Augustine should be a bit higher, about 2 to 3 inches, for best results.  Taller grass is also better able to compete with weeds. 
 
Mow often, removing no more than one third the total height, to reduce stress on grass.  Leave clippings on the lawn.  A season’s worth of clippings equals one fertilizer application.
 
And no need to make the last cut of the season shorter. It won’t hurt the lawn, but it is not necessary.
 
A bit more information:  And make sure the blade is sharp for a better look and quicker recovery of the grass.  Gardeners growing cool season grasses like bluegrass and fescue can improve their lawns health and vigor with fall fertilizations. Those growing warm season grasses need to make their last fall fertilization at least 4 to 6 weeks prior to the first fall frost.
 
For more gardening tips, how-to garden videos, podcasts and more, visit www.melindamyers.com.
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Skip the Bonemeal
Fall means bulb planting and for many gardeners it means breaking out the bone meal to get them well-rooted and growing. Consider skipping the bone meal. You’ll save money and have better long-term results in the garden. 

Bone meal is composed mainly of calcium and phosphorus. Most garden soils have plenty if not excessive amounts of these. Adding more is not helpful and can be harmful.
 
Excessive levels of phosphorus can inhibit mycorrhizal fungi connections with the plant roots.  This relationship helps plants efficiently absorb water and nutrients from the soil. When these connections don’t exist plants must expend their energy reserves on water and nutrient absorption and they are not available for other important functions.
 
You can’t remove the excess phosphorus from the soil, but you can stop adding to the problem. Select phosphorus and calcium-free fertilizers unless your soil test indicates they are deficient.
 
A bit more information:  Recent research on Milorganite, a low nitrogen slow release fertilizer, found it helps put these excess levels of soil phosphorus and potassium to work. As the soil microorganisms released the nutrients from the Milorganite, some of the phosphorus and potassium bound to the soil was made available for plants to use.
 
For more gardening tips, how-to garden videos, podcasts and more, visit www.melindamyers.com.
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Stop Topping Trees
Topping trees is bad for the look and health of your trees and landscape. Plus, it increases maintenance and the risk of tree failure.

Topping is the removal of large branches and trunks from the top of the tree. This severe pruning stimulates the growth of many weakly attached branches right beneath the cut. As these grow in size they will need additional pruning. If they are left intact, they weaken the trees overall structure, making it a potential hazard.
 
So how do you bring a large tree down in size? First decide if you need to. Trees are designed to support normal size and growth. If necessary hire a certified arborist
 
Qualified arborists will use a reduction cut, also called drop-crotching or thinning to a lateral, to reduce the height of the tree. Longer branches are cut back to a side branch that is at least one-third the diameter of the limb being removed.
 
A bit more information: Consider hiring a certified arborist to prune large trees. They have the equipment, training and knowledge to do it correctly. Visit Trees are Good to find a certified arborist in your area. And click here for more information on topping trees.
 
For more gardening tips, how-to garden videos, podcasts and more, visit www.melindamyers.com.
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Keep Leaves Out of your Water Feature
Fall leaves are a great addition to the compost pile. They aren’t, however, a good addition to your pond or other water feature.
 
As leaves fall into water they decompose releasing nutrients and gases that are harmful to fish and encourage the development of algae. Avoid this problem and reduce your workload with a bit of creative prevention.
 
Cover your pond with plastic bird netting just prior to leaf drop. The black netting won’t be visible from a distance.
 
Plus, you’ll probably find it worth sacrificing a bit of the view for the health of your pond and reduction in your workload.
 
Carefully slide the leaf-filled netting off the pond to avoid spilling the leaves.  Or ask for help and roll the netting to keep the leaves contained. Dump the leaves in an area to be shredded and composted or used for mulch. Repeat as long as leaves are falling and blowing.
 
This method also works great for keeping leaves out of groundcover beds.
A bit more information:  Shred leaves with mowers and use as a soil mulch in perennial gardens and mixed borders. Or dig them into vacant annual gardens or new planting beds. The leaves decompose over winter, improving the soil for next season.
 
For more gardening tips, how-to garden videos, podcasts and more, visit www.melindamyers.com.
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New Herb Plants from Old
Bring a bit of flavor indoors for fall and winter. Take cuttings of your favorite herbs to create a windowsill garden.
 
Use a pruner or garden scissors to take 4 to 6 inch cuttings of rosemary, oregano, sage, mint and other herbs. Stick the cut end into a container filled with perlite, vermiculite or a well-drained potting mix.

Place the container in a brightly lit location out of direct sunlight. Keep the soil moist. Once rooted, the herbs can be planted in their own individual containers or together in a larger pot.
 
Move the plants to a sunny window or under artificial light. Water thoroughly whenever the top few inches of soil are starting to dry.
 
Allow the plants to get established before you start to harvest. Remove leaves and stems as needed to add flavor to your favorite dish. Regular harvesting will encourage branching and that means more for you to harvest and enjoy.
 
A bit more information: No plants to propagate? Talk to gardening friends and relatives. And, if your garden center is out of plants, check in the produce department of your favorite grocery store. Many now sell plants so you can grow your own.
 
For more gardening tips, how-to garden videos, podcasts and more, visit www.melindamyers.com.
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National Acorn Squash Day
Roast it, bake it, or cook it into soup.  However you like it, include some acorn squash in one of your meals.
 
September 7 is National Acorn Squash Day. This member of the squash family contains vitamins C, B6, A, thiamine and more.
 
You’ll get the best nutritional value and flavor when harvested at its peak. These as well as butternut and hubbard squash are ready to pick when the rind has turned from a shiny to a dull color and is too hard to penetrate with your thumb nail.
 
Use a hand pruner to cut the fruit from the vine. Leave a two inch stem attached if possible.
 
Only store mature blemish-free acorn squash for later use. You can maintain the quality and flavor for about 5 to 8 weeks by storing acorn squash at 50 degrees Fahrenheit and 50% to 75% humidity.  Squash stored at warmer temperatures develop yellow rinds and stringy flesh.
 
A bit more information:  Don’t compost the seeds. Instead roast them and enjoy them just like pumpkin seeds. Scoop out the pulp and rinse. Dry the seeds and roast at 350 degrees for 10 to 15 minutes.
 
For more gardening tips, how-to garden videos, podcasts and more, visit www.melindamyers.com.
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Collecting and Growing Roses from Seeds
Add some challenge and mystery to your fall gardening. Collect and sprout seeds from your favorite rose.

The challenge comes from trying something new. The mystery; you never know if the offspring will grow up to be like its parent, a beauty or an ugly duckling.
 
Start by collecting the rose hips soon after they turn their normal yellow, orange or red color.  Rose hips are small apple-like fruit found on roses. Slice the hips into 2 to 3 pieces to expose the seeds.
 
Collect and soak seeds in water for 12 to 24 hours and then pack in a mixture of moist sphagnum moss and vermiculite. Then store the seeds in a plastic bag in your refrigerator for three months. Don’t forget to mark the bag!  You don’t want anyone snacking on your experiment.
 
Plant the chilled seeds in a seed starting mix just as you would other seeds. Grow in a brightly lit location at 65 to 70 degrees.
 
A bit more information:  Save some rose hips for enjoying at the dinner table. They are high in vitamin C and can be made into jelly, tea and syrup.
 
For more gardening tips, how-to garden videos, podcasts and more, visit www.melindamyers.com.
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Collecting and Growing Roses from Seeds
Add some challenge and mystery to your fall gardening. Collect and sprout seeds from your favorite rose.

The challenge comes from trying something new. The mystery; you never know if the offspring will grow up to be like its parent, a beauty or an ugly duckling.
 
Start by collecting the rose hips soon after they turn their normal yellow, orange or red color.  Rose hips are small apple-like fruit found on roses. Slice the hips into 2 to 3 pieces to expose the seeds.
 
Collect and soak seeds in water for 12 to 24 hours and then pack in a mixture of moist sphagnum moss and vermiculite. Then store the seeds in a plastic bag in your refrigerator for three months. Don’t forget to mark the bag!  You don’t want anyone snacking on your experiment.
 
Plant the chilled seeds in a seed starting mix just as you would other seeds. Grow in a brightly lit location at 65 to 70 degrees.
 
A bit more information:  Save some rose hips for enjoying at the dinner table. They are high in vitamin C and can be made into jelly, tea and syrup.
 
For more gardening tips, how-to garden videos, podcasts and more, visit www.melindamyers.com.
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Fall Webworm
Webby tents can often be seen on the tips of tree branches in fall. Apples, willows, birch, and ash are just a few of the more than 100 species that can be infested. These webby tents are the home to the Fall Webworm.
 
Fortunately this is a cosmetic problem. The worm-like caterpillars generally feed late in the season and only on the leaves of one or two branches.
 
Birds, parasites and other predators usually keep the populations of this North American native pest under control. 
 
If the damage has been severe or you can’t abide the looks, use an eco-friendly control. Gently knock the webs out of smaller trees. Then dislodge the caterpillars with a strong blast of water.
 
Or treat trees early in the season with Bacillus thuringiensis. This bacterial insecticide kills only true caterpillars. Apply to the leaves in and around the nest. You’ll have the best results when the caterpillars are small.
 
A bit more information: The webby tents you find in the branch crotches of cherries, crabapples, apples and other deciduous trees and shrubs in spring is the eastern tent caterpillar. Birds, toads and other insects help keep this pest under control. You can knock the tents out of the tree or treat with Bacillus thuringiensis kurstaki if control is needed.
 
For more gardening tips, how-to garden videos, podcasts and more, visit www.melindamyers.com.
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Most Ridiculous Man of the Year
Here's a late-comer for the Most Ridiculous Man of the Year award. A professional makeup artist in Manchester, England has reportedly spent about $150,000 for plastic surgery and more to look like his favorite reality TV star. The star? Kim Kardashian. He's had lip fillers, laser hair removal and eyebrows tatooed on. Take a look at the picture to see the results. And no, it is NOT Halloween. Sooo, someone actually dropped $150,000 on plastic surgery to look like Kim Kardashian! See for yourself: http://t.co/6eSkniAajM — Us Weekly (@usweekly) December 18, 2014 And he doesn't care what he looks like, according to The Sun, London's daily newspaper. "My look is all about the shock factor. I love all the attention and stares I get in the street. I welcome the hate — it just means more attention. And if anything, it just spurs me on to get more work done." Good money chasing bad, folks. Especially since the guy looks more like the Octomom than the NorthWestmom.
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Please Define "Top"
Scratching my head just a little. US Magazine put out a list yesterday of the Top 14 Celebrity Instagram Photos of 2014.   Six of the 14 involve the Kardashians in some way - by that calculation, they're taking up 43% of the internet, which sounds right and wrong all at the same time. The rest of the list: Jessica Simpson in a bathing suit holding a golf club Macauley Culkin wearing a T-shirt with Ryan Gosling on it Jessa Duggar's wedding kiss Taylor Swift's 4th of July party Nick & Vanessa Lachey's pregnancy announcement Lauren Conrad's haircut Bethenny Frankel wearing her 4-year-old's Hello Kitty PJs The only one that really belongs - or at least makes some sense in being relevant - is the post Diem Brown's boyfriend put up after her passing, expressing his grief.     You have always been My Angel. And now you have your wings. We've been thru so much over the years. Thru the ups and downs we somehow managed to keep our promise. We never gave up on each other. Our plan to be together forever hasn't changed... it's just going to take a little longer now. And I'm going to hold onto this ring for you till we are together again. So don't worry mama, I'm not afraid. I know you will always be with me to give me your strength. You are The Love of My Life. My reason to be a better man. I Love You Always and Forever A photo posted by CT (@theofficial_ct) on Nov 11, 2014 at 8:50am PST  
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It's the Most Wonderful Prank of the Year
Jimmy Kimmel and his wife have a holiday tradition - well, sort of a tradition - with acting couple John Krasinski (from The Office) and Emily Blunt (most recently from Into The Woods). They live across the street from one another, and for Christmas, they play pranks on each other. This has been going on for a couple of years, and each year, the pranks get bigger and more out of control. Watch the clip to see what Jimmy did to them last year - the thing he thought would bring the prank-feud to a conclusion. And then watch to see watch Emily and John did to raise the bar considerably higher this year. Nice to have that kind of money to throw away, but it is sort of fun to watch.  
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"Governor, This Is Barack Obama..."
What a fun moment. Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick made his final appearance on Boston Public Radio yesterday, and got a very interesting phone call as part of his farewell. President Barack Obama called in, identifying himself as a former resident of Somerville, a suburb of Boston. The president spent some time in the state while a student at Harvard, and he's got a good relationship with the outgoing governor. So why not call in? Watch the video of the call. Seems legit to me.  
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I Really Really Really Really Really Really Want This!
Dear Santa: I know this is probably an impractical present, and that it will probably only survive one light dusting. But Santa, I really really really really really really really want one of these. A remote-control pickup with a snow plow attachment. I've been really really really really good this year too.                                                                                                          Signed,                                                                                                          Your Pal Mikey!     (function(d, s, id) { var js, fjs = d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0]; if (d.getElementById(id)) return; js = d.createElement(s); js.id = id; js.src = "//connect.facebook.net/en_US/all.js#xfbml=1"; fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js, fjs); }(document, 'script', 'facebook-jssdk')); Post by Boji.
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Cancel The Interview, Please
Sony Pictures announced formally today that it will not now and maybe ever release the movie they'd scheduled for a Christmas debut, The Interview. The film, starring Seth Rogen and James Franco as some newsmen recruited by the CIA to assassinate the leader of North Korea, drew the ire of North Korea's current ruler, who said its release would be considered an act of war. More recently, someone hacked into Sony's servers, releasing sensitive information and threatening some drastic action if the film were released as planned. Some interesting folks are not happy at all. Like Donald Trump... #TrumpVlog #TheInterviewMovie A sad day for freedom of speech- http://t.co/eQDh4BkDHp — Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 17, 2014 And Salman Rushdie... “@FinalFenwayFict: Anyone remember @SalmanRushdie? Art is supposed 2 provoke. #TheInterviewMovie” Yeah, I remember him. And: agreed. — Salman Rushdie (@SalmanRushdie) December 17, 2014 But, here's the question that everyone wants answered... Whens Dennis Rodman going to intercede and squash this whole thing? #TheInterviewMovie — Jacob Saylor (@jacobsaylor) December 18, 2014
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A Box of Poo for You
You know Cards Against Humanity, right? The makers refer to it as "a party game for horrible people" that's "as despicable and awkward as you and your friends." On Black Friday, they made an interesting offer to folks on their website: a box of male bovine excrement for a mere $6. They used a more guttural expression that we really shouldn't be using here... Now, the folks at CAH report that they sold 30,000 units. 30,000 units of genuine bull crap, amounting to $180,000. I can only imagine how popular these will be at the office Yankee Swap this year. Now if you'll excuse me. My dog just went outside, and I'm pretty sure there's a gold mine waiting to be picked up on my lawn.
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Wrapping Up a Holiday Tradition
Darlene Love came to fame with the 1960s classic, "He's a Rebel." But for close the three decades now, she's earned even more fame from her annual appearance on David Letterman's last show before Christmas to sing "Christmas" - aka "Baby Please Come Home." She'll sing it one last time tonight, on Letterman's final show-before-Christmas. This time next year, Stephen Colbert will be sitting in Letterman's seat. To get everyone in the mood, the folks at CBS put together a compilation of Darlene's appearances, blending them all together in one pretty spectacular rendition. Enjoy - and be sure to set your DVR for tonight's performance...  
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Shaking Off Hanukkah
Someone pointed out recently that there aren't any good Hanukkah songs out there. It seems that the only choice is Adam Sandler's "Hanukkah Song," and that's not really about the holiday, just about folks who might celebrate it. So along comes Six13, a Jewish a cappella group, and their parody of Taylor Swift's "Shake It Off." You'll have fun, learn a little bit about the holiday, and even how to play with a dreidel. And you might start bopping along with the tune. Win win!  
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Happy Holidays: Sheriff Santa
There's a guy in Missouri who gives away about $100,000 a year in $100 bills to random strangers. This holiday season, he got a little bit of help - from the Jackson County Sheriff's Department in Kansas City. The officers were handed a small pile of Benjamin Franklins and sent out on the street to help those who needed help. What a terrific, feel-good story...  
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Happy Holidays: The Christmas Spirit
Not everyone's ready for the holiday, right? Seems like it rushes up on you sometimes. Or maybe you're just not ready for it. Sometimes, you need a little push. Like Chris, who gets a visit and a sizeable nudge from a Jolly Old Elf. A fun short film to get you in the spirit...  
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Happy Birthday, Frankie
Pope Francis celebrated his birthday yesterday. Some folks took to Twitter to pass glad tidings, using #happybirthdayholyfather. It looks like being the pope doesn't put you above the typical birthday pranks the rest of us have to endure, like sharing photos from your early years. This one looks to be from 8th grade. What do you think?   Happy birthday Pope Francis! @Pontifex #happybirthdayholyfather pic.twitter.com/67KWJIFDJT — The Catholic Hipster (@churchhipster) December 17, 2013 Meanwhile, the pope celebrated his birthday the way you'd expect this down-to-earth guy to do it. He invited some homeless men and his household staff to sit and have breakfast with him after morning mass.   Pope Francis shared his birthday breakfast with homeless men and a dog. http://t.co/h93FMUumkG #HappyBirthdayHolyFather — Whats Up Mimi (@WhatsupMimi) December 18, 2013
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Ellen Skunks Conan
Looks like the daytime talk shows have better budgets than their nighttime counterparts. Case in point: an audience member pointed out that Ellen Degeneres gives away phenomenal gifts to everyone in her audience. It's the way she rolls. Amazing things like personal cappucino machines, one's very own MRI unit (complete with Fabio, your MRI tech), and the not-even-out-yet iPhone 9. Conan had nothing but half-a-sleeve of gluten-free Fig Newtons in his car. Not to fear. Ellen to the rescue. Check out what she gives to every member of Conan's audience. I wonder if Conan gets to keep one...?  
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New Rule: Don't Let Mom Call Into Your Talk Show Appearance
How's this for a fun time? Brad and Dallas Woodhouse are what you'd call political pundits. They're also what you'd call brothers. Brad's a Democrat, and Dallas is a Republican. This week, they appeared on Washington Journal on C-Span to discuss their new book, "Woodhouse Divided," about bipartisanship and the political divide in the United States. I'm sure it was a fun conversation, but not one that would catch my attention. Until... ... the Woodhouse brothers' mother called in, unexpectedly and unplanned, and pretty much told the both of them to settle their differences so that Christmas at the family home would be peaceful. The clip is below, and it is priceless!  
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Seal It With a Slap!
Whoever thought Jimmy Fallon and Oprah Winfrey could play a married couple? Well they did - back in the 80s - on a soap opera called Midnight Meadows. It's becoming a running bit on The Tonight Show, and it involves Jimmy and his guest running back and forth into and out of the scenes. You almost wish they'd show those transitions. From the sound of the audience reaction, that's one of the best parts.  
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Can I Get a Translator, Please?
Christian Bale's newest film, Exodus: Gods & Kings, hasn't even been out for two weeks, and already, folks are talking about his next film. The trailer for Knight of Cups was released this week, and while the film's language is English - I understand all the words - I think I'm going to have to have an interpreter with me if I plan to sit and watch it. It's not that anyone's unintelligible - there's no Stallone/Schwarzenegger component to the movie - it's just that I have no idea what's going on. Sure, trailers are supposed to tease you and even titillate you, so you'll be interested in seeing the movie. This one looks like a bad acid trip caught on film. What do you think?  
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The Holidays Are Coming!
What's Up Moms is a great group of fun moms who poke fun at themselves and their lives. Earlier this week, we featured their parody of Taylor Swift's "Blank Spaces." Today, I stumbled on this "trailer" for The Holidays Are Coming, and while it's from last month, it's especially fitting now, with Christmas Eve just a week away. Enjoy - and know you are NOT alone!  
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Emojinized Science
Bill Nye the Science Guy always does what he can to make science understandable to the Average Joe. In this day and age, what better way to illustrate one's point - or, in this case, lesson - that with emoji. Everyone knows what emoji are - so why not put them to good use. So watch Professor Nye do Professor Darwin one better by using emoji to explain evolution. I'll bet you have a Smiley Face when it's done...  
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Blistering Hot Britney
According to Women's Health magazine, Britney Spears is in "the hottest shape of her life." That's why they put her on the cover of the magazine. And according to them, she did it all without a trainer. They point to her "insane abs" and suggest that you too can achieve them with "one simple move." I hate to be a cynic, but I'll bet it's the purchase of pretty good photo-editing software. Does that make me a bad person...?   Thank you so much @womenshealthmag for featuring me in your new issue! 😘 It's on stands this week! A photo posted by Britney Spears (@britneyspears) on Dec 12, 2014 at 4:10pm PST
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Christmas Services - Saturday Night Live-Style
I've been picking on Saturday Night Live a lot this season. It's like the whole show isn't living up to the standards set in the past. Sure, there's a lot of history in the show, and some phenomenal years when everything they touched was gold. This year, not so much. So, when they do crank out something that's pretty good, it's only fair to point it out. Here's a little something they did this weekend, and it hits home with a lot of casual Christians, You know, the kind who only go to church twice a year - once at Easter, and once at Christmas. Enjoy!  
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Barbara Walters' Most Fascinating Person of 2014
Prepare to scratch your heads. A woman you probably never heard of until September or so - Amal Alamuddin Clooney - has been named the Most Fascinating Person of 2014. Not that she's not interesting. But the most fascinating person on the planet? All because she married George Clooney. Which Barbara Walters refers to, with her gift for hyperbole, as one of the "greatest achievements in human history." Perhaps it's time for Barbara to hang up her microphone, huh?  
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Adorable Holiday Tearjerker?
This new ad by Apple has been getting a lot of play since it was released on Sunday. Over a million-and-a-half hits as I write this. It highlights the ability of Apple products - a Mac, an iPhone or an iPad - to "create thoughtful, emotional gifts and memories that transcend time." It's a granddaughter using computing power to create a duet with her grandmother's voice-over 45 rpm recording. Tearjerker? I'm not feeling it. Does that make me Grinchy? Honestly, I was more excited that the granddaughter had a turntable than anything else.  
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Yup, It's Genetic
Ever wonder where the Kardashian and Jenner kids get their flair for showoffmanship? Blame it all on Mama K. Proof positive is available for viewing on the website of Love magazine. They present an annual Advent calendar (completely missing the point that Advent is a particulary religious thing) that features 25 models doing strange things that have nothing to do with Christmas. Most of them - so far - are pretty young. Then there's Kris Jenner. Pushing 60. Dressing and acting like her 30-something kids, including flashing her cleavage to the camera, grabbing her lapels with the veiniest hands this side of the Cryptkeeper. Watch the video - if you dare. Be careful, though. The lyrics to the song that goes with the video are definitely NSFW.  
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The Sun May Not Come Out Tomorrow After All
The updated version of Annie hit theaters this past weekend, and according to The Hollywood Reporter, it's a hard knock watch. Starring Jamie Foxx as the billionaire and Quvenzhane Wallis as the little orphan, the new Annie was pretty much eviscerated: This one paragraph says it all: "Putting aside the grating performances, the clumsy direction, the visual ugliness and the haphazard development of story, character and relationships, the movie is hobbled by its intrinsic unsuitability for contemporary retelling." Of course, you never know with movies like this. Critics can often cripple a film - or just because of their shear nastiness, encourage people to go and check it out for themselves. So what do you think? Is it worth popping for $12 a ticket, plus the investment in the soda and popcorn and candy, to make your own determination?  
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Taylor Swift - Most Parodied Artist of 2014?
What's Up Moms is a website "dedicated to providing fast-paced videos that are not only helpful, but also fun to watch!" Every once in a while, they'll produce a good parody of pop song. Like this one - their parody, all mom-related, of Taylor Swift's "Blank Spaces." Which could very make make Taylor the most-parodied musical artist of 2014. We'll have to wait for the official tally, of course.  
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