Wednesday, December 31, 2008


YES MAN starring Jim Carey was GREAT!  I just adored it, and completely recommend it. Tonight we are ringing in the New Year in a hot tub, outside in the brisk Portland air, even though it is raining.  YES MAN reminded me of how fun it is to say Yes to life! Happy 2009 friends!!

Thursday, December 25, 2008

SAG postponing Strike Authorization vote.

According to Variety, SAG's postponement of its strike authorization vote may signal that its leaders are tilting in a more moderate direction -- so much so that the divisive vote may be called off.

It's still unclear what direction the national board will take at its emergency meeting on Jan. 12-13, scheduled ostensibly by national exec director Doug Allen and president Alan Rosenberg to persuade the fractured 71-member panel to present a united front and convince members to vote up a strike authorization. But the timing of the Monday night announcement was telling. It came a few hours after Allen and Rosenberg met with leaders of the Unite for Strength faction, a group of Hollywood moderates who gained five board seats in the fall after campaigning on a platform that asserted that Rosenberg and his allies had bungled the contract negotiations strategy.

Unite for Strength spokesman Ned Vaughn told Daily Variety that he and his colleagues expressed concerns about going ahead with the vote, given the growing numbers of SAG members - particularly high-profile stars such as George Clooney and Tom Hanks - coming on the "no" side. "We felt that in light of what's been happening that it would have been reckless for the national board to proceed without having the chance to reconsider," Vaughn said. "We appreciate that they've taken our concerns seriously."

The victory by Unite for Strength wrested away control of the national board from the more assertive Membership First faction for the first time in three years and gave the moderates - comprised largely of New York and regional reps -- a narrow ruling margin . It's unclear whether the emergency board meeting will lead to the withdrawal of the authorization vote or replacing the SAG negotiating committee, which remains dominated by Membership First. Vaughn would not comment as to what steps the board might take but he expressed concern that scheduling the confab as a "face to face" meeting in Los Angeles on a Monday and Tuesday will make it more difficult for New York and regional branch members to attend. Similar concerns arose earlier this month when Rosenberg scheduled an emergency meeting for Dec. 19, but then called it off a few days later.

SAG's insisted it needs a strike authorization vote, which requires the approval of 75% of members who cast ballots, to force the congloms to improve their final offer and has spent the past year blasting the moguls and the deals they signed with the town's other unions,
particularly in new-media residuals and jurisdiction. The guild's also contended that signing the final offer will hasten the disappearance of residuals as TV programming migrates to the Web. But the majors have insisted that they won't change the terms of the deal and they've blasted SAG repeatedly for insisting it deserves better terms amid a full-blown recession.

Monday, December 22, 2008

POTA is CA nonprofit!

Well, we're 1/2 way there! Today POTA officially received tax-exempt status in California! We expected it would not be until January or February until we heard. So this is great news! Now we are just awaiting federal approval and we are done! It feels good to move forward.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

House Update

Sorry I have not had a chance to write lately. Things have been so hectic with buying the new house right in the middle of the holidays! On Monday we had our home inspection in the pouring rain, and discovered a rook leak right in the middle of the living room. Our amazing realtor Tom Sardo (who is the best realtor EVER) said we were lucky this happened before we bought the house and not after. Just like magic, later that same night bank interest rates dropped to under 4.5% for a 30-year-fixed... which means that if the seller can't pay to fix the roof, we now can pull out extra money to pay for it, and have the same monthly payments as planned. Amazing! Sometimes I feel so lucky...

Saturday, December 13, 2008

SAG faces dissension from NY board

LOS ANGELES (AP) -- A faction of the Screen Actors Guild on Friday called for the union to suspend an upcoming vote to authorize a strike amid stalled negotiations with Hollywood producers. The announcement represents a major split between the union's Hollywood leadership and a more moderate group based in New York. The group hopes its opposition will force the union to rethink the timing of its vote scheduled for January."Our members and our industry are struggling through the worst economic crisis in memory," the New York board said in a statement. "While issuing a strike authorization may have been a sensible strategy in October, we believe it is irresponsible to do so now.

"The New York division's 14 board members also called for the 71-member national board to hold an emergency meeting to appoint new negotiators to work with the American Motion Picture and Television Producers, which represents the major studios."With a fresh team, the AMPTP will return to the table, and we can get a fair deal," the New York board wrote. "A deal that will not cost careers, homes, lives. We want our members to understand that while strikes are sometimes unavoidable, we will do everything in our power to avoid this one." 

SAG President Alan Rosenberg said he was surprised by the announcement because the group did not approach him first. He said he agreed to call an emergency meeting to discuss "this extraordinarily destructive and subversive action." He would not say when the meeting would be held or what effect the board's opposition may have on the scheduled vote. SAG plans to send strike authorization ballots to more than 100,000 union members on Jan. 2, a date that puts Oscar night within reach of a potential boycott. Votes will be counted on Jan. 23, ahead of the Feb. 22 Academy Awards, the most important date on the Hollywood awards calendar. Approval by 75 percent of voting members is required to pass the measure. 

If it is approved, the SAG national board can call a strike.Studios and the actors union have been negotiating a new deal since before the previous contract expired June 30.SAG wants union coverage for all Internet-only productions regardless of budget and residual payments for Internet productions replayed online, as well as continued actor protections during work stoppages. Directors, writers, stagehands and another actors union settled for lesser terms
and the studios said it was unreasonable for SAG to demand a better deal, especially now that the economy has worsened.AMPTP spokesman Jesse Hiestand declined to comment on the board's announcement. Meanwhile, the guild has been sending e-mails, fact sheets and Web video testimonials by famous actors urging members to vote yes on the strike. 

It said Mel Gibson, Ed Harris, Holly Hunter, Martin Sheen and other actors were among the first signers of SAG's "Statement of Support."The actors union, however, appears to be in transition. In guild elections in September, an upstart group called Unite For Strength broke up the majority control of the national board that had been held by Rosenberg's supporters. But the Unite group has not clarified its position on the strike vote.The guild plans a town hall meeting in New York on Monday and one in Hollywood on Dec. 17.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Can you believe this?

Who would have thought that after gas prices reached $4/gallon only two months ago, we'd see these prices EVER again?  Not me. Amazing...

Sunday, December 7, 2008

On Project Closer

Now that we are buying a new house, all I can do is think about it! There's no pantry or laundry cabinets, but Matt came up with a great idea to remodel a hallway!  Not only would it create a dream pantry and lots of space, but it will also create a large supply cabinet that connects to my office! Inspired by the new house, I entered the One Project Closer December Giveaway". This month's prize is a gift certificate to Home Depot!  What a perfect housewarming that would make!  

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Homeward Bound

Matt and I have been on pins and needles for a few days now. Our realtor said the house we bid on was listed at a CRAZY LOW price and it would probably go up by atleast $50,000 in bids. So we did not have our hopes up, but I have to say...I had "that" magical feeling! Since many people were away for the Thanksgiving weekend, it was a particularly slow time for showing houses. There were still 5 bidders by the end, and it was neck-in-neck between us and one other applicant. But a good plan combined with a GREAT real estate agent & bank lender and a heaping spoonful of luck all came together in just the right way and made it so that WE GOT THE HOUSE!!!!

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Less Trash is Easy

My friend Karen's cousin was on ABC news giving helpful hints about creating less trash! Look how simple she and her friend make it all look!

Monday, December 1, 2008

The Offer

Today Matt and I put in a bid to buy a HOUSE!  I'd been feeling very stagnant and stifled lately. But after Jenn and I went to Agape on Sunday I felt suddenly inspired again.  It's as if this giant weight had been lifted and I remembered my true nature.  The theme was about moving forward --just "doing it".   Yes!  Yes to life!