Forever My Girl – REVIEW AS A CATHOLIC MOTHER and One on One Interview with Alex Roe

Disclaimer: I was invited to a complimentary media screening of Forever My Girl.

Every so often in this amazing world of blogging, the coolest opportunities cross my desk. Last week, I took Julia to see a press screening of Forever My Girl. The next day, I was invited to conduct a one on one interview with the star of the movie, Alex Roe. (What?! Um, yes please!).

Before I get to the movie review, I’m going to tell you about the interview first.

I rode the elevator up to the third floor of the Palomar Hotel downtown. I walked over and checked in and chatted with another blogger. We were getting to know each other and suddenly I looked up and Alex Roe was standing there. He shook my hand and introduced himself. He was so kind and polite. The team took us back to a room full of windows and an incredible view of downtown Phoenix.

I walked in and was told my seven minutes was now starting. I’ll do my very best to retell our conversation.

Yes, I was going to Facebook Live it. But… I got nervous. I felt strange about asking, we started visiting, and I forgot all about taping the interview. (rookie mistake!)

In the movie, Alex plays the guitar and sings. He doesn’t just strum a few chords, his playing is incredible. I asked if that was really him. Yes! It was. It was all completely him. There was no ‘stunt double’ for the singing or the guitar playing. He learned guitar for the movie. Can you imagine?! What a gift to be given a push like that into really mastering an instrument! At that point, I gushed about how Brian and I met in a jazz choir in high school and how we sing together and love music and…. wait, whose interview was this?

His character is swept up into the glamor of being a celebrity and he falls out of touch with family completely. I asked if that is at all what his life is like. He was so sincere and sweet when he said that his mom would never let that happen! He is a very proud uncle of nine nieces and nephews and he loves going home to London and spending time with them.

In the movie, he has an adorable relationship with the little girl in the movie. He shared that many of those scenes we ad-libbed and were absolutely precious. You can tell he has a wonderful way with children!

Then, he told me that my eyes matched my shirt, so we are pretty much besties now.

About the movie:

Julia and I enjoyed the film. It was good fun for a girls night out.

A bit predictable? Yes. A little too much hanky panky your grandma wouldn’t approve of? Yes. A little like a Hallmark flick? Sure. We love Hallmark movies, so it was right up our alley.  I think it is so fascinating that Hallmark movies get a bad rap sometimes. Did you know that the Hallmark movie is the 4th most watched channel on television? In this time where unhappiness and despair are seen on every news channel, we have tuned into a channel that has dubbed itself a happy place. We choose films like Forever My Girl as a light escape from the everyday. 

The music was really great. Knowing that Alex learned to play the guitar for the movie is amazing! I think he just might have a career ahead as a country singer.

The chemistry between Liam (Roe) and Billy (Fortson) is seriously precious. You can tell in the movie that it is the real deal.

From where I sit, if you like sweet movies about second chances, this is perfect for you.

Would I take Nate (14) to see it? Nah. Probably too much of a chick flick.

Would I take Riley (6) to see it? No. It has the premarital sex grandma would shake her finger at.

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From the studio:

A music superstar reunites with his first love and realizes the steep price he has paid for his success in Forever My Girl, an uplifting and emotional romance based on the novel by New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Heidi McLaughlin.

Liam Page (Alex Roe) and his high-school sweetheart Josie Preston (Jessica Rothe) were the golden couple of Saint Augustine, Louisiana, until Liam left her at the altar for a shot at fame and fortune. Eight years later, Liam returns to his tiny hometown for the first time as a world-famous recording artist, but not even his own father is thrilled to see him. As he tries to rebuild the bridges he burned years earlier, Liam reconnects with his small-town roots, his close-knit community and Josie, the girl he left behind. As he attempts to reclaim everything he loved and lost, Josie does her best to keep him out of her heart, but life has one more surprise waiting for Liam, one that could change everything, in this heartwarming look at love, family and second chances.

Forever My Girl stars Alex Roe (Hot Summer NightsThe 5th Wave), Jessica Rothe (La La LandLily & Kat), Abby Ryder Fortson (Ant-Man, “Transparent”), Grammy Award® winner Travis Tritt (Fire Down BelowBrother’s Keeper) and Tony Award® winner John Benjamin Hickey (Flags of Our FathersThe Bone Collector). The film is directed by Bethany Ashton Wolf (Love SceneMidnight Juliet) from a script she adapted from McLaughlin’s best-selling novel of the same name.

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How to Choose your word of the year

I shared with you that I spoke to our MOPS group about how to choose your word of the year. I’ve been asked to share the presentation with you, and I’m glad to!

*The idea of a word of the year was first introduced to me by my dear friend Heather. Once upon a time, she had a lovely blog full of beautiful inspiration. I’m very glad to call her friend. She told me of Ali Edwards, OneWord365, and her own collection of beautiful inspiration. What is written below is my attempt to help others find these lovely ideas.

WHAT IS A WORD OF THE YEAR

– the idea is to choose a word (or let it choose you) that has the potential to make an impact on your life

HOW TO START

Spend time with God seeking where He wants you to grow in your friendship with Him this year. Take note of the words He is putting on your heart, thinking about each one until the word God has set aside for you becomes clear.

Sometimes, it might feel like you keep ‘tripping’ over a word. He’s probably trying to tell you something.

TIPS FROM ONEWORD365

Focus on being rather than doing.
Different than resolutions, your one word isn’t a constant reminder of what you “should be doing”. Instead, it stands to inspire how you want to live.

Be authentic.
Your word should reflect YOU, and no one else. It’s easy to listen to others’ words and then pick one that sounds good. But you want a word that’s uniquely yours…

Don’t overthink it.
It’s simply about identifying the word that keeps coming back to nag at your heart. Keep an open mind and heart, and pay attention to the word that you see, hear, and recognize the most in the coming days…

THERE ARE NO RIGHT OR WRONG WORDS!

abide, calm, abundance, balance, flourish, hope, joy, listen, obey, expect, purpose, surrender, submit, patience, trust, nourish, still, whole, thrive, grow, pursue, focus, nurture, shine, brave, cultivate, embrace, love, forward, action, create, release –
The possibilities are endless!

WHAT DO YOU DO WITH YOUR WORD?

You live with it, you invite it into your life, and you let it speak to you. You follow where it leads you. The intent of your word is for it to become a part of you for the rest of your life. Each year, each word you choose will build upon the others as God’s heart becomes embedded in your character.

READY, SET, CHOOSE!

1. Spend some time imagining what you want your life to look like. Who is God asking you to be? What is He whispering to you to let go of?

2. Write down the characteristics of that person you want to become. The virtues are always a beautiful place to start: prudence, justice, temperance, courage, faith, hope and charity

3. Make a list of words that sum up that description or that conjure up an image of that vision you started with. It can include nouns (such as peace or joy), adjectives (like thoughtful or brave), verbs (like create or pause) or even prepositions (like with or in).

4. Then whittle your list down to the few words that resonate most with you. Really dive into the true meaning of each word.

5. Turn them over and over in your heart and mind. Give yourself time to mull over your short list.

6. Take a deep breath and commit. Just go ahead and decide.

 

 

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WORD OF THE YEAR {2018}

Do you choose a word of the year? Since 2008, I’ve chosen a word to reflect on throughout the year.

Last week, I had the honor of speaking to my MOPS (Mothers of Preschoolers) group about how I go about choosing a word.

Usually the word is one that I don’t necessarily “want”. I’ll pray and ask what word He’d like me to think about, and a word will keep showing up in front of me. I let Him know that I’d rather have a “pretty” word, like flourish. But usually, I keep tripping over the word until I agree.

I waited to share my word until after the talk, so it would be a surprise!

This year, my word is abundance.

John 10:10 – The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly.

I stand in awe at almost the peak of a mountain. I look around and see how abundantly God has blessed me. He’s held me close through pain and loss. He’s opened my eyes to new mercies everyday. He’s been the wind as I soared into mothering a large family. He’s given me a precious gift, knowing my grandparents so late into my life. He’s give me a husband who tells me that I’m beautiful and lovely and kind. Oh, how He loves me.

When I face troubles this year, I will hold tight to the word abundance and know how He is my Father. I know His ways are not always what I’ve chosen or what I’ve wanted, but they’ve always been perfect. They are perfectly beautiful and perfectly wonderful.

I love this tradition to pick out a word (or have a word choose you!)

Trust {2017)

Calm {2016}

Background {2015}

Shine {2014)

Grace {2013}

Calm {2012}

Grace {2011}

Trust {2010}

Overshadowed {2009}

Available {2008}

Have you chosen a word this year? I’d love to hear what it is!

If you’d like stationery to go with your word, head over to my etsy shop and let me know what you would like!

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The Elves

In the great Christmas of 2017, the elves failed to make an appearance at first. I was mostly sure that the kids had forgotten and weren’t concerned about why they were not there until Riley asked about them. I panicked. It was at least December 12th when he asked. I quickly concocted a genius plan sure to cover up any mom fail stories. Feel free to borrow said plan.

I told Riley that the elves had written a letter. They had apologies to make.

Their arrival was late this year and in fact, it happened on St. Nicholas Day. When they arrived at our home and found the shoes full of candy, they piled their sleigh full of the candy. Then, they were so embarrassed by their behavior, they had concealed the candy by sitting on top of it. They felt absolutely terrible. They made it appear that mom had forgotten St. Nicholas Day, too. (gasp!).

They promised to never take all the candy again and invited Riley to share the candy with all his siblings immediately.

Riley watched them carefully for a few minutes. He decided their apology was sincere. For the remainder of December, little gold foil could be found all over the house. Was it the elves leaving trails of their mischief? Or was it Riley partaking of their loot? We will probably never know.

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Create a Better Home Care Routine with Grove Collaborative

This conversation is sponsored by Grove Collaborative. It is my honor to share news with you from a company that I enjoy and support!

January is a great time to start practicing a better home care routine. But what does ‘better’ look like?

For me, it’s about finding simple, healthy solutions I can stick with all year — even when things get chaotic. It means keeping my expectations clear and consistent when it comes to daily and weekly chore lists. 

Enter Grove Collaborative! You guys – they are probably my favorite company. Their scents, the delivery… perfection! I never have to remember to pick up these products at the grocery store. Grove simplifies tasks like shopping for home and personal care products. Instead of making an extra stop at the store, you can come home to all your favorite healthy, affordable products sitting on your doorstep. And if I don’t need any one month, I can just push the shipment to the next month! They even text me to remind me to check before the shipment date. So great on my budget and my cabinet space.

Now is a great time to give Grove a try, because they’re offering a free New Year, New You Set with your first order of $20 to help you create your own healthy home care routine:

  • Free Mrs. Meyer’s hand soap
  • Free Mrs. Meyer’s dish soap
  • Free Mrs. Meyer’s hand lotion
  • Free Grove cleaning caddy
  • Free Grove walnut scrubber sponges
  • Free Shipping & 60 Day VIP Trial

If you’re already a customer, you’ll get a free set of Grove walnut scrubber sponges, which are so pretty you won’t mind leaving them out by the sink.

Switching to beautiful home care products has been a real game changer for me. 

I can’t say enough good things about Mrs. Meyer’s soaps and lotions. They were some of the first natural products I started using, and they’re still a staple in my kitchen and bathrooms. All the products are non-toxic and made with plant-derived ingredients, so I can feel good using them around my family. Right now I’m using the honeysuckle scent because it really perks me up on grey days!

In addition to the free New Year, New You set, here are the top 10 products I’d order from Grove if you’re looking to create your own healthy cleaning routine:

  1. Seventh Generation laundry pods
  2. Ecover stain remover
  3. Grove Collaborative wool dryer balls — these are genius!
  4. Grove Collaborative kitchen towel
  5. Seventh Generation auto dish packs
  6. Bee’s Wrap assorted wraps — perfect for storing bread or wrapping leftovers
  7. Grove Collaborative cleaning concentrates
  8. Grove Collaborative glass spray bottle with silicone sleeve
  9. Grove Collaborative microfiber all-purpose cloth
  10. Smarty Pants adult probiotic complete — to keep yourself healthy, too!

Once you submit your Grove order, you’ll also be signed up for the free 60 day VIP trial. For 60 days, save even more with free shipping, free gifts, price matching, exclusive sales and personal service. My VIP membership has paid for itself in shipping alone!

Here’s how it works:

  1. Sign up for Grove Collaborative here. You will receive the New Year, New You Offer for free when you sign up!
  2. To receive this offer, your order needs to be a minimum of $20. Choose the combination of products and scents you love and receive your first box within a few days.
  3. You made it! Click Finish & Pay and place your order.

 

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