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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 July 2014


Wine Bottles – Out of the Recycling Bin and Into the Garden
Stop! Don’t recycle those wine bottles, instead give them a second life in your garden.

Use wine bottles to create a colorful edge along a path or around a planting bed. Set the bottle, top-side down in the ground.  Individual bottles make great hose guides.
 
Or create colorful outdoor lighting. Remove the bottom of the bottle with a glasscutter. Place over LED bulbs. Strategically place individual wine bottle lights throughout the garden or use multiple bottles over a string of lights.
 
Put your glasscutter to work creating a planter. Remove a section from one side of the bottle. Lay the bottle on its side, secure in place, fill with soil and plant.
 
Or remove the top of the bottle. Invert and place in the bottom of the bottle. The original opening is now your drain hole and the bottom of the bottle is your saucer.
 
And of course you can always place them on a bottle tree.
 
A bit more information: Convert wine bottles into watering devices. Punch a small hole into the soil of your container garden. Fill the bottle with water, invert and place into the soil. Plant Nannies are hollow terra cotta spikes that can be set into the soil to hold the wine bottle in place.
 
For more gardening tips, how-to videos, podcasts and more, visit www.melindamyers.com
 
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Leaf Spot on Rudbeckia
Once thought to be the answer to low maintenance perennial gardens, Goldstrum Rudbeckia’s reputation has been tarnished by several leaf spot diseases.
 
A bacterial and several fungal leaf spot diseases cause purplish-black spots on the leaves of rudbeckia. Severe infestation can totally blacken the leaves and cause the plants to dieback a bit earlier in fall.  Fortunately most of the diseases are cosmetic and the plants will continue to flower and return each year.
 
Reduce the risk of this disease by providing adequate light and air circulation around the plants.  Use a soaker hose or watering wand to apply water directly to the soil when needed. 
 
In fall, remove and destroy all diseased plant parts.
 
If disease is a yearly problem, plant more resistant cultivars like Becky, Cherokee Sunset, Irish eyes, or Prairie Sun.
 
A bit more information:  Or keep the plants and hide the diseased leaves. Plant something slightly shorter in front of the Goldstrum Rudbeckia plants to mask the discolored leaves, but allow the flowers to show through.
 
For more gardening tips, how-to videos, podcasts and more, visit www.melindamyers.com
 
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Crown Rot Causing Sudden Wilting and Death on Ajuga (Bugleweed)
Sudden wilting, yellowing and death of ajuga, also known as bugleweed, means crown rot may have invaded the planting.

This fungal disease is most common in warm wet or humid weather. It first appears as sudden wilting and dieback in colder climates and yellowing and death of plants in warmer areas. The stems of infected plants turn brown or black and rot. 
 
This disease can be introduced into the garden on infected plants or soil or spread by tools and water. Since the disease is in the soil it is difficult to eradicate.
 
Remove and destroy infected plants and the surrounding soil immediately. Be sure to disinfect your tools with a one-part bleach and nine-part water solution during and after the process.
 
If the disease continues to spread or has destroyed much of the planting, it is time to start over in a new location with disease-free plants.
 
A bit more information:  Reduce the risk of crown rot to healthy plantings by thinning groundcover plantings every few years or before they become overcrowded. And avoid planting crown rot susceptible plants in the bed where the Ajuga died.  Consider amending the soil with compost, peatmoss or coir to improve drainage before planting.
 
For more gardening tips, how-to videos, podcasts and more, visit www.melindamyers.com
 
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Cool Splash Diervilla Shrub for Shady Gardens
Brighten up the shade with a Cool Splash Diervilla.
 
This cultivar of the southern bush honeysuckle was selected for its creamy to yellow leaf margins. The variegated leaves are topped by fragrant yellow flowers in midsummer. They help attract hummingbirds and butterflies to your garden.
 
Cool Splash is hardy in zones 4 to 8 and grows equally well in full sun or partial shade with moist well-drained soil. Once established, it is heat and drought tolerant.
 
This small-scale shrub suckers, forming a dense mass of cascading branches. It eventually reaches 2 to 3 feet tall and wide, making it suitable for small space gardens as well as mixed borders and shrub beds.  Use it to mask leggy stems or visually anchor taller trees and shrubs to the ground.
 
And don’t let the common name honeysuckle fool you. Though a member of the same family, this is not the invasive honeysuckle taking over our woodlands.
 
A bit more information: Combine Cool Splash with shade tolerant perennials. Hosta, astilbe, Brunnera, coral bells and ginger are just a few. For more shade tolerant shrubs watch my Shrubs Made for the Shade video.
 
For more gardening tips, how-to videos, podcasts and more, visit www.melindamyers.com
 
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Smart Irrigation Month – Planning a Watersense Irrigation System

Watering our landscapes properly can save water and improve our plants’ health. And if you decide to invest in an irrigation system make sure to get the best value and water savings by doing your homework first.
 
Look for systems that include EPA approved WaterSense irrigation controllers. These are like thermostats only they’re for your irrigation system, adjusting watering schedules based on weather and soil moisture instead of the calendar.
 
Select a system zoned to water plants at different rates. Established trees require less frequent watering than annuals. Use drip irrigation or low volume sprinklers in gardens to apply water slowly and right where it is needed.
 
And consult a certified Irrigation specialist that understands how irrigation works, the local environment and will help you comply with any building codes.
 
A bit more information: Your time invested in research before investing in an irrigation system can reduce water use, repair costs and plant replacement. Experts estimate we could reduce water use by 50% just by eliminating improper watering. If you already have a system, inspect it regularly. Check for and repair any leaks, clear clogs, adjust direction and repair damaged sprinkler heads. For more information visit these web sites:
http://www.irrigation.org/Certification/Certification_Splash.aspx   http://www.epa.gov/WaterSense/products/controltech.html
 
For more gardening tips, how-to videos, podcasts and more, visit www.melindamyers.com
 
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Grow Star and Heart Shaped Veggies
Add a little star power to your meals with the help of cookie cutters and veggie molds.
 
Cut cucumbers into ¼ inch thick round slices. Use a small heart shaped cookie cutter to remove the center of the rounds. Use these in salads, on sandwiches or relish plates. Save the outer ring. Slide two grape or cherry tomatoes onto a toothpick so they resemble a heart. Place them in the center of the outer ring of the cucumber and secure in place.
 
Or grow heart and star shaped fruit. Cover immature fruit with vegetable molds. Use twisty ties to hold the fruit filled mold onto the vine or support. Check the fruit regularly as some may be ready to harvest in as few as 5 to 7 days. Once the fruit has filled the mold and is fully colored, it is ready to harvest.
 
Creating heart and star shaped vegetables will dress up your meals and may encourage everyone to eat more veggies.
 
A bit more information: For more information on vegetable molds visit http://www.veggiemold.com.  And watch for postings on my Facebook page as I grow a few star powered vegetables of my own.
 
For more gardening tips, how-to videos, podcasts and more, visit www.melindamyers.com
 
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Less Mowing and Hand Trimming, Better for You and Your Landscape
Eliminate hand trimming around garden statues, playsets, narrow spaces and individual trees and shrubs. Invest a bit of time now to eliminate time spent on these tasks in the future.

Create mowing strips around raised beds and stonewalls to eliminate hand trimming. You can purchase and lay pavers and other edging materials or just remove a narrow strip of grass and cover with mulch. Run one set of your mower wheels on the mowing strip and cut the grass right up to the structure.
 
Connect individual trees and shrubs with mulch beds. The trees will benefit from the mulch and you will spend less time trimming around each plant. Plus the mulch bed protects the plants from weed whips and mowers that injure the plants as we try to cut the grass as close as possible.
 
And if this is too much mulch, try filling the area with perennials and groundcovers for added beauty and seasonal interest.
 
A bit more information: Mulching around trees also eliminates the frustration of surface roots. For more ideas watch Melinda’s Garden Moment video Dealing with Surface Roots http://www.melindamyers.com/Pasquesi-Landscape-Care/landscape-care/dealing-with-surface-roots.html
 
For more gardening tips, how-to videos, podcasts and more, visit www.melindamyers.com
 
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Taming Floppy, Leggy and Less-Than-Attractive Annuals
Break out the pruners and groom your unsightly annuals back to their original beauty.
 
Some annuals tend to develop long leggy stems with few flowers. Regular deadheading and removing the top few inches of the stem encourages more compact growth and continual flowering.  Don’t worry if your busy schedule allowed your plants to get out of hand. Just cut back the stems halfway.
 
Try staggering severe pruning to keep your garden looking good throughout the renewal process. Do this by pruning back only one third of the plants in a flowerbed or one third of the stems on individual plants at one time. Repeat each week. By the time you prune the last few stems the first group will be producing new flowers on more compact stems.
 
Reduce your workload next season by selecting annuals bred for long bloom and compact growth. You’ll have better-looking plants all season long with less work.
 
A bit more information: Regular grooming can help keep foliage plants like coleus looking their best. Remove the coleus flowers as soon as they form to prevent leggy growth. Prune back leggy plants as described to keep these beauties looking their best.
 
For more gardening tips, how-to videos, podcasts and more, visit www.melindamyers.com

 
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Grow a Pickle in a Bottle
Add some mystery and fun to this season’s harvest by growing a pickle in a bottle.
 
Just like the ship in a bottle, finding a large cucumber in a clear bottle with a small opening will keep friends and relatives guessing.
 
Start by selecting a small immature cucumber. Leave it attached to the plant and slide it into a bottle. Leave your bottled cucumber tucked under plant leaves or create a little shade with cloth or newspaper to prevent it from overheating and rotting in the sun.
 
Check your cucumber regularly and watch it grow. Cut it off the vine just before it fills the bottle. Your cucumber in the bottle will only last a few days, but will provide lots of fun. Preserve it to extend the fun.  Boil 2 cups of vinegar mixed with 2 cups of hot water and 3 tablespoons of pickling salt. Cool and pour the mixture over the cucumber and seal the jar shut.
 
A bit more information: Add some more fun to the garden by scratching your name, design or a message into the rind of winter squash. Take a sharp object and lightly scratch your idea into, but not through the rind of an immature winter squash. As it grows, matures and hardens your message will become clearer. 
 
For more gardening tips, how-to videos, podcasts and more, visit www.melindamyers.com
 
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Upcycle Pool Noodles into the Garden
Don’t throw away those worn out or forgotten pool noodles. Put them to work in the garden.
 
Make a lengthwise cut halfway into the noodle. Then use it to top a chicken wire or hardware cloth fence or plant cage. It prevents cuts from sharp wires and adds a bit of color and whimsy to the garden.
 
Or bend and insert the noodle into a lawn bag to hold it open. Adding green debris for recycling will be much easier, especially when it’s a one person job.
 
Cover ½ inch PVC to create colorful structures in the garden.  Stand on end and securely anchor in the ground for a trellis. Or create colorful arches for added interest or fun for the smaller gardeners in the family.
 
Or cut the noodle to the desired length and cover with ribbon, flowers, pine cones or other materials to create a wreath for your front door, garden entrance or shed.
 
A bit more information: Create a raised bed with the help of old window well sections and noodles. Bolt two window wells together. Top with a noodle to protect you from the sharp edges. Set in place, fill with soil and plant.
 
For more gardening tips, how-to videos, podcasts and more, visit www.melindamyers.com
 
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Plan and Plant Now for a Bountiful Fall Harvest
Now is the time to plan and plant vegetables for a bountiful fall harvest.
 
Start by looking for vacant spaces in the vegetable garden that are left after harvesting lettuce, spinach and other early maturing crops. Expand your search to other plantable areas in flowerbeds and mixed borders.
 
Sow seeds of beans, cucumbers, carrots, beets and other short season vegetables. Simply count the number of days from planting to the date of the average first fall frost in your area. Then check the back of the seed packet for the number of days needed from planting until harvest. As long as you have enough time for the seeds to sprout, grow and produce before frost, they can be added to the garden.  Or extend the season with coldframes and floating row covers.
 
Those in frost-free areas can plant longer season crops that benefit from maturing during the cooler months of fall.
 
A bit more information: Wait for the soil to cool before planting lettuce and other vegetable seeds that require cooler temperatures to germinate. Or start the plants indoors and move them into the garden as transplants. Help keep the soil cool by mulching plantings with shredded leaves, evergreen needles or other organic mulch. For more ideas and information on late plantings watch my Melinda’s Garden Moment “Still Time to Plant” video or listen to the audio tip on this topic as well as the Grow a Bountiful Harvest All Season Long audio tip.
 
 
For more gardening tips, how-to videos, podcasts and more, visit www.melindamyers.com
 
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Celebration Maple

Add seasonal color and shade to your landscape with Celebration maple. This fast grower provides beauty with less maintenance.
 
Celebration maple is one of the freeman maple varieties. The freeman maple hybrids display the best qualities of each parent while minimizing their less desirable traits.  The red maple provides the better structure and fall color while the silver maple increases vigor and high pH tolerance.
 
Celebration is a more compact cultivar with good structure that is more resistant to wind, ice, snow, and storm damage.  The red flowers add a touch of subtle color to the spring landscape, while the red and yellow fall color end the season with a blaze.
 
This heat, drought and pollution tolerant tree is hardy in zones 4 to 8, and possibly 9, and grows 45 to 50 feet tall and 20 to 25 feet wide.
 
A bit more information: Celebration® Maple (Acer x freemanii ‘Celzam’) is virtually seedless, so you will have minimal seeds (also known as helicopters) to sweep off the sidewalk. And those that are grown on their own roots will not heave walks and drives.
 
For more gardening tips, how-to videos, podcasts and more, visit www.melindamyers.com
 
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Midseason Fertilization for Vegetable Gardens
Increase this season’s harvest with a midseason fertilization.
 
The amount and type of fertilizer needed is dependent on your soil, past fertilization practices and the type of plants you are growing.

A soil test is the best way to get the information needed to develop a fertilization program for your garden.  But until you have your soil tested, consider following these guidelines.
 
Select a low nitrogen slow release fertilizer like Milorganite to avoid damaging plants during hot dry summer weather.
 
Fertilize leafy vegetables when they are about half size.  Wait until the tomatoes and peppers start producing fruit before fertilizing them. 
 
Apply 1 pound of a low nitrogen fertilizer for every 100 square feet.  Sprinkle granular fertilizer along side or around the plants.  Gently rake it into the soil if needed. Liquid fertilizers are applied by a sprinkling can or garden hose.
 
A bit more information: Always read and follow label directions for the mixing rates and application methods for the fertilizer you select. And with proper care you will have plenty of produce for you, your family, friends and the hungry in your community. Contact Garden Writers Association’s “Plant a Row for the Hungry” program for information on donating extra produce to the hungry in your community. Call toll free 1-877-492-2727 or visit www.gardenwriters.org/.
 
For more gardening tips, how-to videos, podcasts and more, visit www.melindamyers.com
 
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Baby Makes Three
Jessica Biel is pregnant. At least, that's what the folks at RadarOnline.com are reporting. Jessica and her hubby, Justin Timberlake, are expecting a child in another seven months or so - the first for both of them. Like any good reporter, I had to find another source before reporting this news. And looky here - HipHollywood.com had the story six days earlier. So it's got to be true, right? I mean, if HipHollywood.com says so, and then RadarOnline.com says so without saying that HipHollywood.com said, so, then it's got to be true. That's the fourth law of journalism, I believe.  
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What Wine, What Candy?
It's an annual adult dilemma: what wine goes best with which candy? Fret no more - the folks at vivino.com have come up with the Ultimate Guide to Pairing Wine with Halloween Candy. Your prayers are now officially answered. Skittles, for instance, go with a dry white or a sweet white. Kit Kats go with sparkling wines or a medium red. A dessert wine goes with just about any sort of candy - which you'd expect. And poor little Sour Patch Kids - they pretty much go with nothing. Now we know what makes them sour...
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Mystery Solved, Sooner or Later
Investigators are pretty certain they've found a piece of Amelia Earhart's plane. The aviator disappeared over the Pacific Ocean about 77 years ago, while attempting to fly around the world. The aluminum aircraft component was found on an atoll called Nikumaroro, somewhere between Hawaii and Australia. Oh, and the debris from Amelia's twin-engine plane was found in 1991. Looks like they sent it to the We'll Get Around To It Eventually forensic laboratory.  
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Game of Thrones Grilling
George R.R. Martin, author of the books that spawned Game of Thrones, showed up on Late Night with Seth Myers the other day. On the couch with him, Amy Poehler, there to promote her own book - not quite as epic as George's, but still, a literary work. Amy showed how much she knows about GOT by quizzing George about who uttered certain lines of dialogue. The results are very, very funny.  
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Is It Mother's Day Already?
Someone needs to stop Snooki from procreating! Seriously. Check out the video she did for US Weekly. She talks about a lot of things, but key to the conversation is her new daughter, Giovanna. "Giovanna just turned one month yesterday," Snooki said. "All she does is eat and s--t and sleeps… she just lays there. I think once Giovanna starts to actually move and crawl and run around, that's when s--t's gonna hit the fan." Doctor Spock must be whirling in his grave...  
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I'm Sorry, What Are We Selling Again?
Miley Cyrus rolled out a new ad campaign, serving as the new spokesperson for MAC cosmetics Viva Glam line. Check out the ad, which was posted to Miley's Instagram yesterday. She's selling lipstick and lip gloss. Other than the brand name positioned in the center of the ad, do you see anything that says, "Hey, I'm selling lipstick and lip gloss" in that picture? I don't know - maybe the products get photoshopped in after the fact?     Every $ from the sales of my #VIVAGLAM will go to @MACAIDSFund to help those affected by HIV! πŸ’‹πŸ’‹πŸ’‹ Una foto publicada por Miley Cyrus (@mileycyrus) el Oct 10, 2014 at 1:45 PDT
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Nobody Puts Baby in a Corner
Terra and Drake nailed this Dirty Dancing routine and surprised their wedding guests.  You'll smile and even get a tear watching them dance.  What a beautiful couple!  iframe>div>
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Leave My Lips Alone!
Kylie Jenner - the youngest and hopefully the last of the Kardashian-Jenner clan - has declared that she wants the world to stop talking about her lips. A couple of weeks ago, there was all sorts of speculation out there on whether she'd had plastic surgery to make her lips look fuller and more luscious. Now, she wants people to "just talk about something new, at least." Here's a thought: maybe we don't talk about the Kardashians and Jenners at all. Wouldn't that be heavenly...? That's Kylie on the right, by the way. DON'T LOOK AT HER LIPS!     i love you A photo posted by Kylizzle (@kyliejenner) on Oct 10, 2014 at 5:28pm PDT
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Charades, or "Shahrodds"?
Ewan McGregor dropped by The Tonight Show the other night. And these days, no one can just drop in to The Tonight Show without participating in a bit of some sort. The chosen activity: a game of charades, Ewan versus Jimmy Fallon, with rocker Jeff Tweedy and basketball great Charles Barkley joining in the fun. And it is fun. Especially the British versus American banter. Check it out!  
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God is Not a Magician with a Magic Wand
Pope Francis, head of the Catholic Church, sort of set the Church on its ear this week, He declared in front of a gathering at the Pontifical Academy of Sciences, the Pope said that both evolution and the Big Bang Theory are real. That's the theory that substances collided in space eons ago, setting the universe in motion, not the TV series about the geeks and the blond. He said that God is "not a magician with a magic wand." Which sort of takes away the buzz for kids who grew up thinking Harry Potter was God...  
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Bazooka Swats Fly!
This could be the most bizarre story of the week - well, so far, anyway. A 75-year-old property owner in Marathon County, Wisconsin is at odds with the local government about the use of his land. The government says he's using the land for non-zoned purposes. They've demanded that he remove certain equipment, or pay a fine of $500 per day. The property owner disagrees strongly, and has refused to move the equipment in question. The dispute's been going on for a while, and with the bill rolling up toward the $100,000 mark, the county decided it was time to collect. So, send in the tax collector? Not so much. Send in two dozen police officers and an armored SWAT vehicle. Because the 75-year-old was deemed "argumentative." The sheriff's department offers no apology.“I’ve been involved in about five standoff situations where, as soon as the MARV showed up, the person gives up," said a representative, "saving time, money and increasing safety. People may not always understand why, but an armored vehicle is almost a necessity now.” Talk about overkill. Here's what the SWAT vehicle looks like - the video is from a few years ago, when the sheriff's department acquired it.  
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How to Get Yourself Hurt Very Badly
English pop star Robbie Williams shared videos of himself entertaining his wife in the delivery room at a hospital as they awaited the arrival of their second child. So, despite his wife Ayda being all smiles afterward, you can bet that Robbie will get some significant payback - and I'll bet very quickly. Here's what he did wrong, in no particular order: He took videos of his wife in labor. He posted videos of his wife in labor. He sang to his wife while she was in labor. One of the songs he sang, while she pushed very hard, was "Let It Go," from Frozen. Oh, yeah, he's gonna be hurtin' for certain!   "Frozen" RW x https://t.co/dmGhbqElHE — Robbie Williams (@robbiewilliams) October 27, 2014
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Space Race Gets Scary Again
We've gotten pretty complacent about launching rockets into space. Yesterday's launch of the Antares rocket from Wallops Island, Virginia changed that. The rocket, carrying supplies to replenish the International Space Station, exploded about six seconds after launch, just barely off the launch pad. Luckily, no one was hurt. The only injury was to the pride of the news photographers covering the event from a bunker well away from the event, but still close enough to be hit by the shockwave. Check out the video...  
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What Halloween Candy Are You?
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Is It Taunting, or Celebrating?
Supermodel Gisele Bundchen posted a photo to Instagram Sunday, after her husband, Tom Brady, and the New England Patriots, beat up on the Chicago Bears. Final score - 51 to 23. And here's Tom and Gisele, getting ready to head home after the victory, flashing a triumphant "51." Five fingers on his hand, one on hers. I suppose it all depends on whether you're a fan or not. If you are, celebration. If not - well, okay, it's still a celebration. Never mind.     So happy for my love!!! Go Pats!!! 51 points!!! πŸ‘πŸ‘πŸ‘πŸ‘πŸ‘ A photo posted by Gisele Bündchen (@giseleofficial) on Oct 10, 2014 at 2:40pm PDT
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Proof of Life, Unfortunately Required
I've never quite understood the death hoax thing. Someone starts a rumor that a celebrity has passed away. A news organization grabs hold of the rumor and starts reporting it as fact. Then Facebook grabs hold of it, and boom, the celebrity is no more. It happened this weekend to Judd Nelson, the actor who made a splash with The Breakfast Club and... Well, The Breakfast Club. The internet had him dead and buried. So he had to send the Los Angeles Times "proof of life." A picture of himself, reading the Sunday Times. Funny how THAT's not making the rounds of the internet...   Judd Nelson didn't die last night. He sent us this photo to debunk the rumor. http://t.co/FrIUzW4VmV pic.twitter.com/OjuBPgnutt — Los Angeles Times (@latimes) October 26, 2014
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This Frozen Will Melt Your Heart
Okay, this might be the coolest thing a bunch of tough guys has ever done... Members of the Boston Bruins visited Boston's Children's Hospital, dressed as characters from Disney's Frozen. It's become a Halloween tradition for the team. Players dress in their own costumes, usually sharing a theme, and try  to bring a little fun into the lives of the patients at the hospital. Mission accomplished, boys! "Just here to put smiles on their faces" B's make annual Halloween visit to @BostonChildrens: http://t.co/kwOl8K477A pic.twitter.com/2GMidHp79a — Boston Bruins (@NHLBruins) October 27, 2014
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A Fabulous Takedown
We can now have some faith in humanity. Check out the video, shot by passengers in line at the Dallas/Fort Worth airport recently. A very loud and obnoxious fellow started taunting a guy at the ticket counter, making homophobic remarks because the guy was wearing a pink shirt. Because that's a sign, of course, that someone is gay. The obnoxious guy started throwing punches - well, just one, and then the crowd swarmed around him and took him down. We can feel good, people!  
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The Little Zombie Mermaid
Just in time for Halloween, Traci Hines - aka YouTube's Hipster Mermaid - has put together a new horror ditty. Start with "Part of Your World" from The Little Mermaid. Toss in an ample helping of The Walking Dead. Et voila - Scariel, in "Part of Your Brain."  
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Why DO You Drive a Lincoln?
Matthew McConaughey's taped a series of "contemplative" commercials for the folks who make Lincoln automobiles. He's driving along, in deep thought, explaining all the reasons he drives a Lincoln MKC. This weekend, on Saturday Night Live, Jim Carrey took a swipe at Matthew's ads. Three swipes, to be exact. And he pulled off some dead-on impressions that were - uncharacteristically - NOT over the top. Which makes them even better. Check them out.  
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Tough Act to Follow, Indeed
Across The Pond, in the United Kingdom, folks rave about a variety show called Saturday Night Takeaway. There's been a lot of talk lately of bring a version of the show here to The States, and it looks like that's about to happen. Vulture.com reports that NBC has confirmed they'll be handling the show. “We have a natural affinity for this type of show. It’s in our DNA,” one NBC executive told the website. And here's the best part: Neil Patrick Harris is set to host! It's a match made in heaven - the uber-talented NPH hosting a good old-fashioned variety show that will likely originate out of New York. Doubt he's got the chops for it? Check out this opening number from the 2013 Tony Awards show. This. Will. Be. Epic!  
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50 Shades of Bland?
Things may not be so rosy with the production of 50 Shades of Grey. Insiders report that the sex scenes aren't passionate enough. Some say that Dakota Johnson, who plays Anastasia Steele, isn't coming off sexy enough. Some are saying there's a decided lack of chemistry between her and Jamie Dornan, her co-star. So they're heading back to bed. You know, to try to get it right. I wonder what the trailer will look like when they're done. This is what it looked like a month ago...  
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Whose Walk Is It Anyway?
Benedict Cumberbatch has made a name for himself starring in Sherlock Holmes on the BBC. Last week, on the BBC's Graham Norton Show, Benedict showed a decidedly different side. Comedian Miranda Hart was demonstrating the different walks she talks about in her act, when she got into her "ultimate walk" - that of a pop star. She imitated Beyonce's "Crazy in Love" walk, and then got Benedict to give it a shot. Check it out. Sort of a cross between a giraffe and an ostritch, but it's pretty good.  
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If It Ain't Your Move, It Ain't Your Move
Lamarr Houston, a defensive back for the Chicago Bears, sacked the Patriots' back-up quarterback, Jimmy Garoppolo, yesterday. The Bears were getting whalloped - down by 25 points at the time - so you can't really blame the guy for wanting to celebrate a little. But clearly, Lamarr didn't catch any of the video of Stephen Tulloch of the Detroit Lions, who celebrated a sack imitating Aaron Rodgers' "discount double check" move, and ended up with a self-infllicted season-ending knee injury. Because the same think happened with Lamarr. Sack, "discount double check," hit the knee wrong, boom. Probably done for the year. Lesson to be learned: if it's not your move, maybe you shouldn't be making it.  
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Into the Woods, Anyone?
The movie doesn't open for another two months, but already, there's a lot of buzz about Into the Woods. The Stephen Sondheim musical makes the leap from stage to screen on Christmas Day, and it's got some powerhouse names associated with it. Meryl Streep as The Witch and Johnny Depp as The Wolf, for starters. Add in Anna Kendrick as Cinderella, Chris Pine as Cinderella's prince and more, and they could have a winner on their hands. Check out the featurette that hit the internet over the weekend.  
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