Monthly Archives: June 2011

Win #6: Two tickets to a double bill!

I am delighted to report that I have won my sixth prize since I began this blog back in January. The Pacific Cinémathèque has awarded me two passes to a double bill of Jimmy Stewart westerns.

I am especially happy to win this prize, as I had my first date with my husband at this theatre and I love Jimmy Stewart. The screening takes place on June 30th, so look for my review in July!
Oh, yes, the money, this adds $27.00 to my current total winnings of $309.24.

Dreaming of the Maldives

It’s been a while since I had time to work on this project, but now that my work schedule is lessening a bit, I suspect I’ll have to catch up with R’s record of five wins.


On March 21 my competitor announced that she won her third contest.  Now she is not only the winner of one more contest than I am, she is also at around $190, while I am about $150 behind her. 

This morning, I had a great dream where I won a prize – a trip for two to the Maldives, worth $2500.  During my whole dream, I was trying to get the tickets and answering last minute questions from the company giving away the tickets.  As my dream progressed, it turned out that the tickets were for a 48-hour trip to the Maldives, with Matt and I set to fly directly there and on the way back with a stopover in Hawaii.  Not sure how much of the Maldives I would have seen on my dream trip, but the dream me was very excited.  I remember thinking in my dream, too, that I would finally be ahead of Rsaloust in the amount of winnings.  I was choked up when I awoke and realized that I was not going to the Maldives after all.

Obviously this is a sign that I will win again soon and that I just need to get busy entering more contests!

Thus, here are my latest entries.  On March 21:

  • Entered to win a $1000 HBC gift card on this supper recipe website.  This would solve my need for a new duvet set for sure!  Plus, I would finally get a food processor, so I would be able to make one of my favourite dishes more often.
  • Entered a contest on Today’s Parent for a $150 H&M gift card.  If the clothes are for kids, I have many friends whose kids might be interested in gettign this gift card.
  • Entered to win tickets to the Vancouver Aquarium’s Immersion event on Miss 604.  I haven’t been to the aquarium in years!
  • Also on Miss 604, I entered to win a gift package from Morgan Crossing, a new development that I pass by quite often.  I really like going to Mink Chocolates and I had no idea they opened a new location in Surrey.  
  • Again on Miss 604, I entered to win a chocolate fondue and champagne in 900 West Lounge, valued at $150.
  • I entered for an iPad on a pet food site.
  • Also on the Nutrience site, I entered to win Ivan free food for a year.  Actually the iPad is for Ivan too.  I heard they have cat games on it and Ivan’s declawed so he wouldn’t scratch the screen.
  • Some Rimmel Mascara from Elle.  I can’t wear eye makeup anymore but my sister might like this.
  • I also entered to win a $135 Ecco Latakia bag from Elle.  I really like that bag.

On April 4:

  • Entered the Flare magazine contest to win a $500 beauty pack.
  • I also entered to win a coffee machine.  I like the smell of coffee and I like shiny things, so this would be a nice addition to my mom’s kitchen counter (I also love making my mom happy).

On April 13:

  • Entered to win a $500 Holt Renfew gift card.  When I was in university and tried to browse through their store to see what the fuss was all about, they hassled me.  It would be nice to go back, use their gift card and show them who’s who now.  Take that.
  • I then entered Miss 604’s patio contest.
  • I entered Miss 604’s other contest, for a stay at the Delta Victoria Ocean Pointe Resort and Spa.

On June 13:

      My Review of Blue Valentine

      After many days of doing other “delightful tasks,” I finally sat down and watched Blue Valentine. I wasn’t exactly sure what to expect, given that all I knew was the movie was “critically acclaimed” and the DVD cover has Michelle Williams (Cindy) and Ryan Gosling (Dean) looking lovingly at one another. It turned out I was in for a very emotional cinematic ride.

      The movie intercuts the early days of Cindy and Dean’s relationship with their present day relationship. The former depiction is that of a passionate and tender pair who are a delight to watch. The best scene in the movie involves the two displaying their hidden talents. According to director Derek Cianfrance, this scene was entirely improvised, with the actors really showing each other their hidden talents for the first time. It looks very natural and the joy of their respective discoveries is incredibly palpable.


      Juxtaposing the youthful enthusiasm and joyous love of this pair with the embittered and pained duo we see years later is almost a cruelty to the eyes and heart. We don’t see the degeneration of the relationship, but we can guess what has taken place and how Cindy and Dean have grown apart.


      I won’t reveal more than this, as it is easy to give away too much in describing this film. Suffice it to say, that I was hugely impressed by Blue Valentine. Williams and Gosling give fantastic performances and the dialogue is incredibly real. It is not an easy movie to watch for two reasons, though. First, its realism has a bluntness and in-your-face quality that is almost confrontational. It’s like Cianfrance is challenging his audience to examine their own relationships; to juxtapose in their own minds what they were like when they first met their significant other and how they interact with that same person now. Second, the film is also very honest about the sexuality of its characters and it depicts their physical interactions with the same unrelenting boldness it does all their other interactions. The film was originally given an NC-17 rating, but had it reduced to an “R.” That said, the sex scenes are in no way gratuitous. I didn’t find them offensive in any way and thought they were integral to the story.


      So, given all I’ve just written, I think it’s clear that this movie is not for the You’ve Got Mail/Bridget Jones’ Diary fans. However, if realism, rather than escapism is what you’re in the mood for give Blue Valentine a shot, though maybe not on Valentine’s Day.


      *So, where am I at in my winning streak? For those of you keeping score, I have won five prizes so far: Tickets to the Talking Stick Festival; Passes to West is West, $100 worth of Dutch cheese; Tickets to an International Dance Day performance; and passes to Something Borrowed, a regular popcorn, and a DVD of Blue Valentine. The approximate total of my winnings is $282.24. I should mention that I have won a $5 off coupon to East Side Mario’s, a free Tim Horton’s coffee with Roll up the Rim, and other percentage off coupons, but I am not counting those, as I don’t really consider coupons a prize and, well, I had to buy a tea to get the cup to roll up the rim, so yeah, that doesn’t count either. I’m quite happy that I’ve basically won one prize a month since I started, so here’s hoping for an even bigger win this month!