Monday, April 14, 2014

Little Golden Books Monday #177

I received my copy of the Disney Editions book "The Art of the Disney Golden Books" by Charles Solomon today from Amazon, and I can happily say it was worth the $24.95 I spent for it (the cover price is $35). It is a large sized hard cover book with 160 pages full of amazing artwork and information and stories to go along with it. Here are a few photos of the book to give you an idea of what is inside. The last photo is of my son checking out all the photos throughout the book.  He especially liked the photo on page 14 that showed Walt in a promotional photo sharing the Dumbo book with a couple of dogs.
If, like me, you are a fan of Disney and Little Golden Books, then this book is a MUST have!

the front cover of Disney Editions book The Art of Disney Golden Books

Inside pages from Disney Editions book The Art of the Disney Golden Books

Inside pages from Disney Editions book The Art of the Disney Golden Books

Inside pages from Disney Editions book The Art of the Disney Golden Books

Inside pages from Disney Editions book The Art of the Disney Golden Books

Inside pages from Disney Editions book The Art of the Disney Golden Books

Inside pages from Disney Editions book The Art of the Disney Golden Books

Inside pages from Disney Editions book The Art of the Disney Golden Books

Inside pages from Disney Editions book The Art of the Disney Golden Books

Kid reading Disney Editions book The Art of the Disney Golden Books

Monday, January 20, 2014

Little Golden Book Monday #176

Little Golden Books Board Game
Hello... I'm back after a long absence. For todays return to Little Golden Book Monday, I present Little Golden Books Board Game. This is something I saw two or three Christmases ago but didn't pick it up the day I saw it. Sadly I didn't see it again until just before Christmas this year. This time I picked it up as soon as I saw it in the shop window!
Although this is not actually a Little Golden Book, but does come with miniature Little Golden Books as part of the game. Here is the description of the game on the back of the box: Spin the spinner and travel around the game board featuring your favourite Little Golden Books characters. If you land on one of the special spaces you might have to 'bark' like the Poky Little Puppy, 'toot' like Tootle, 'meow' like The Shy Little Kitten, or 'splash' like Scuffy The Tugboat! Be the first player to collect all four of the Little Golden Books tokens to win!
We have already played the game a number of times, sadly, I have come in last every time.
Little Golden Books Board Game

Little Golden Books Board Game board and pieces

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Happy 7th Birthday Big Pile of Stuff!

Today, July 30th, is the 7th birthday of this, the Big Pile of Stuff blog. For the first few years, I made all kinds of fun graphics for the special occasion, but then the last few years, I have actually forgotten about the day completely. Today, I wanted to to acknowledge 7 years, but I was kinda lazy, so I have just recycled one of my favorite graphics from a previous birthday. I love this one because it looks so much like something you would see on Sesame Street, with the large foam letters on sticks parading around their apartment.
As a special thank you to those of you who actually read this, I will be having a cool giveaway in a few days, so keep your eyes peeled for my next post.

Monday, July 29, 2013

Little Golden Book Monday #175

Today's Little Golden Book is Disney Planes based on the upcoming Disney animated movie of the same name. I saw some previews of this movie about a year ago and thought it looked very much like a direct to DVD film, but that didn't stop me from picking up the book, and I'll be there on August 9th for opening night of the film. At least this book has me a little more interested in seeing the film.

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Denny's Celebrating 60 Years Retro Style Menu

I love collecting ephemera, and restaurant menus are a favorite of mine. They are something you see all the time, but you don't generally have the opportunity to add them to your collection which for me makes them all the more desirable. Yesterday when we visited our local Denny's I noticed they still had their very cool celebrating 60 years menu. Denny's seems to change their menu more often than other other restaurant I visit, so I figured they may be close to getting rid of these ones, so I took a chance and asked our server. She seemed very surprised that I would ask, but thought it was very cool when I told her that I collect menus. She went and asked her manager, and a few minutes later she came back and handed me this menu. It has now joined my small but very cool collection of menus. My favorite being the Disneyland Hotel's Monorail Cafe which sadly no longer exists.
Here are the photos of all the pages of the menu. It is filled with lots of great Denny's trivia such as "It began with a donut stand and a promise. Denny's made its start in Lakewood, California in 1953 as a donut stand called Denny's Donuts. The owner, Harold Butler, started his business with this commitment: "We're going to serve the best cup of coffee, make the best tasting food, offer the best value and stay open 24 hours a day." In 1959, the 20-location chain was renamed Denny's Restaurants to avoid confusion with another chain, Doughnut Dan's.
Today, with over 1,700 restaurants in 10 countries, we're committed to keeping that original promise - from our new, better-tasting coffee to our ever-expanding menu of American diner classics. We're America's diner. And we'll continue to serve our guests with the same emphasis as Harold Butler did some 60 years ago.






Monday, June 10, 2013

Little Golden Book Monday #174

Today's Little Golden Book is Disney Pixar Monsters University. I have started to see lots of Monsters university books showing up in many local stores. I have not seen this one on the shelves yet, but since seeing this image on another site, I have been on the look out for a copy to add to my collection!

Monday, April 22, 2013

Little Golden Book Monday #173

Today's Little Golden Book is Walt Disney's Mickey and the Beanstalk from 1988. The story of Mickey and the Beanstalk was originally part of the Fun and Fancy Free animated feature produced by Walt Disney and released by RKO Radio Pictures on September 27, 1947. It was one of the "package films" (feature-length compilations of shorter segments) that the studio produced in the 1940s. It is the 9th animated feature in the Walt Disney Animated Classics series, and the fourth package film by Disney.
The "Mickey and the Beanstalk" portion of the film was the last time Walt Disney voiced Mickey Mouse, as he was too busy working on other projects to continue voicing the famous character. Disney replaced himself with sound effects artist Jimmy MacDonald.

Monday, April 01, 2013

Little Golden Book Monday #172

Happy Easter. Today I present The Golden Egg Book from 1947. My copy is a fifth printing from 1971 and is showing its age, as the cover is starting to peel. Is it just me or does the rabbit on the cover look something from a horror movie? It is amazing how different the cover drawing looks from all the artwork inside the book. Just check out this cute illustration of the little bunny finding the egg.

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Disneyland & California Adventure Guide Maps

 This past Christmas we visited Disneyland for the first time in years! We spend 9 glorious days in Anaheim and spend at least part of ever day at the Disney parks. As you may know, I love collecting ephemera, and Disneyland guide maps are a favorite collectible of mine. As a bit of trivia, these free guides have been provided free of charge courtesy of Kodak since opening day of Disneyland back in 1955. With the bankruptcy of Kodak, these will be the last to be provided compliments of the Eastman Kodak Company.
Every time I visit Disneyland, I come home with piles of guide maps, always with the hope of trading them with other Disneyland fans. That has been my hope for over 25 years, and I have never managed to trade even one of them. I thought I had a chance last year when I attended the North West Mouse Meet. With so many Disneyland fans in one place, I thought I had a chance. But, alas, I didn't contact the Mouse Meet organizer soon enough to get others to bring their extras to the show for trading. Then again, I don't know for sure anyone would care. So, I have now decided to try using the Internet to see if anyone wants to trade.
I have lots of both of the Disneyland and Disney California Adventure guide maps and entertainment guides from our Christmas 2012 visit, as shown above. I also have lots from our trips back between 1988 and 2001. If you have any from before 1988, or from 2001 to today that you either want to trade, or just send my way, please contact me. You can find my email address at the top right of this page.

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Krispy Kreme Doughnuts Tray Liner

Last weekend we had to set our clocks ahead an hour, meaning we lost an hour. At least Krispy Kreme Doughnuts was giving away free original glazed doughnuts to everyone who showed up that day. We had our free doughnuts and I also brought home a couple of their new tray liners to add to my fast food tray liner collection.

Monday, March 11, 2013

Little Golden Book Monday #171

Today I realized that I have posted a couple of Little Golden Books based on Toy Story and Toy Story 3, but had not done Toy Story 2. So, today, I present Toy Story 2 from 2006.
I love the Toy Story films and especially enjoyed Toy Story 2. I loved the way they turned Woody and Bullseye into retro stars of yesteryear on their show Woody's Roundup. I want all those collectibles they show in the film! A Woody's Roundup record player would look awesome in my collection.

Sunday, March 10, 2013

I Love my Local Library

I have always loved visiting my local library. I have always loved to check out the books in the entertainment / arts section. As a young kid, I would looking for books on magic, as a young adult I was looking for books on animation, and then it was books on Disney. I have always loved magazines, and since I can't afford to buy them all, the library has been a great resource to get all those magazines I want to read, but don't necessarily need to purchase. There are tons of graphic novels. Once I had a son, I started spending lots of time in the children's section. Now that video stores are pretty much a thing of the past, the library has become a great place to get movies... for free!
A number of years ago, I got an app for my iMac called Library Books from Harold Chu. Its one of the best apps on my Mac. It always sits at the top of my Macs menu bar and reminds me how many books I have out, let me know when books are due back by changing colour and lets me know when my requests are ready to be picked up. For just a few bucks on the Apple App Store it has saved me tons of late fees!
Another great feature of the app is that it makes is super simple to make a few clicks and do a search of books available though the library system and then place a hold on them. Once they show up, the app icon will turn green to alert you that you have an item to pick up. Most recently I have ordered Walt Disney's Imagineering Legends a great book by Jeff Kurtti, and the Hidden Magic of Walt Disney World, which is a great read! I also just picked up seasons 1, 2 & 3 of Anamaniacs which I am excited to share with my son. I am currently on the last disc of the IT Crowd season 3.
Our local libraries are also adding lots of new programs. This coming spring break, they are adding movie nights, a kite making session, board game nights (complete with pizza and snacks), Lego building sessions and more.
For those of you who have not been to a library in years, you may want to check it out again!

Monday, March 04, 2013

Little Golden Book Monday #170

I received a call from the dentist this week to remind me that it was time for my bi yearly checkup. Thankfully this Little Golden Book from 1970 titled "Let's Visit the Dentist" had reassured me that I have nothing to be frightened of.
I also scanned in the back cover, as it was different from the ones I usually see over and over.

Monday, February 04, 2013

Little Golden Book Monday #169

Today's Little Golden Book is Walt Disney's Peter and the Wolf, a fairy tale adapted from Serge Prokofieff's musical theme. Pictures by Richard Kelsey for the Walt Disney Studio.  Based on the animated cartoon sequence in Walt Disney's "Make Mine Music".
This copy is a second printing from 1976. Original edition was 1946.
The cover of this book is scuffed up, but I liked the artwork inside too much to pass this up when I found it at a local thrift store. Check out this great double page spread.

Monday, January 21, 2013

Little Golden Book Monday #168

Today's Little Golden Book is Disney's Chip 'N Dale Rescue Rangers: The Big Cheese Caper from 1991, written by Deborah Kovacs and illustrated by Darrell Baker.
I was never a big fan of Chip 'N Dale, I usually saw them as nothing more than a foil for Donald Duck in his old cartoons, and I was too old when the Disney Afternoon was on TV to have watched the Rescue Rangers.
Here is what I know:
1) Chip is the one with a black nose (like a chocolate chip).
2) One of the Rescue Rangers characters named Gadget has her own Go Coaster in Disneyland's Toontown
3) There was a great Chip 'N Dale Rescue Rangers comic book from Boom Comics that lasted just 8 issues before Boom lost their Disney licence.
4) Swampy used to be known as Sewer Al long before he landed the job of spokes gator for Disney's Where's My Water puzzle video game.
OK, I could be wrong on the last one, but the first three are all true.

Monday, January 14, 2013

Little Golden Book Monday #167

Today's Little Golden Book is Disney / Pixar's Monsters, Inc from 2012. This is the first Little Golden Book to feature Monsters, Inc. Then the movie initially came out, it was during the time that LGB's had dropped their Disney licence, so its nice to see they have put one out in 2012. There is a new Monsters, Inc movie titled Monsters University coming out in June 2013, so I guess this is a good time to get the characters out in front of the public again.
While we were in Disney's California Adventure park, we got to ride Monsters, Inc Mike & Sulley to the Rescue, and we also saw all of the characters in the Pixar Play Parade. The highlight of the parade was seeing George Sanderson, who sadly still had a sock stuck to his back!

Monday, January 07, 2013

Little Golden Book Monday #166

Today's Little Golden Book is Disney's Wreck-It Ralph which was released September 2012. I had hoped to find it on our recent trip to Disneyland this New Year's, but had to make a trip down to the Barnes & Nobel in Bellingham to pick it up, as there were no Little Golden Books to be seen anywhere in Disneyland. There was a very cool Fix-It Felix Jr video game in the Starcade in Disneyland's Tomorrowland which was free to play along with a bunch of other retro video games (as seen in Wreck-It Ralph) such as Pac-Man, Q*Bert etc. My son and I had a great time playing the Fix-IT Felix Jr arcade game early one morning before the lines of guests showed up in the park!

Monday, December 10, 2012

Little Golden Book Monday #165

Today's Little Golden Book is DC Super Friends: Big Heroes which was released May 2011.
Trouble comes in many shapes and sizes, but no trouble is too big for the world's mightiest heroes. When the Flash, Aquaman, Green Lantern, Superman, and Batman unite to save the day, they are known as the Super Friends! This book is based on the Super Friends toy line and comic book series which ran from May 2008 until the final issue (#29) in Sept 2010. My son and I bought this comic each month and enjoyed it immensely, but as you can see, the final issue sported the Bat-Mite on the cover. Was it just a coincidence that this was the last issue of the series, or was the apperance of the Bat-Mite the point where the series jumped the shark, kinda like when they introduced Scrappy-Doo to the Scooby-Doo series, or the Great Gazoo to the Flintstones.

In any event, it's nice to see the DC Super Friends continuing to live on in the Little Golden Book series.

Tuesday, October 09, 2012

TV Week Fall Preview 2012 - Part 2

The second Fall Preview issue of TV Week magazine is the Returning Series issue. Being a big TV fan as well as a magazine reader / collector, I always look forward to these issues. The cover date of this issue is September 15-21, 2012, with a cover price of $4.99.
Along with all the weekly TV listings (which I haven't looked at in years), you will find a listing of all the returning series for the new season. The list of my favorite returning shows includes: Big Bang Theory, 2 Broke Girls, 30 Rock, Community, Don't Trust the B.... In Apartment 23, How I Met Your Mother, Last Man Standing, The Middle, Modern Family, The Office, Raising Hope, Subugatory, Supernatural, and two shows that were not listed in this issue, but I happen to know are returning, Burn Notice and my favorite current TV show, Psych!
Check out the list of cancelled shows. Of the 45 shows on the list, the only ones I will miss are Chuck (which I knew was in its last season last year), Breaking In (which was not that good once they brought it back from the dead), and Rob which was good but not great - I mostly liked Fernando (Cheech Marin) and his goofy brother in law Hector.

Then there are new shows from last season that have been renewed. There are 4 new shows from last season that are on my PVR record list; 2 Broke Girls, Don't Trust the B... In Apartment 23, Last Man Standing, and Suburgatory. I started watching Up All Night and Whitney, but I was ignoring both by mid season.
I've got a ton of shows I am recording / watching each week, so its a good thing I spend the later half of the summer watching / deleting everything off my my PVR so that I have space for all the new shows I will be watching!

Monday, October 08, 2012

Little Golden Book Monday #164

Today's Little Golden Book is DC Super Friends Batman! The book was released back in May 2012, just two months before the release of the summer blockbuster, The Dark Night, so I am sure it enjoyed the extra hype that came along with the release of the movie. Since Batman is my favorite comic book hero, I had this on my list to pick up as soon as it was released, but once again, it took a while as I could not find it anywhere in my area. I picked up my copy at the Barnes and Noble in Bellingham, WA.
Batman doesn't have superpowers. Instead, he uses his brains and crime-fighting tools to catch crooks and bring in the bad guys. It says so right there on page 4 of the book. I think that is why I like Batman so much. My favorite superheroes are Batman, Daredevil and Captain America, all superheroes who don't have typical superpowers.
And hey, what's with Superman there in the background of the cover. That's a Bat Signal in the sky, not a giant "S" in the sky. I guess things are slow in Metropolis.

Monday, October 01, 2012

Little Golden Book Monday #163

Today's Little Golden Book is the Amazing Spider-man from Marvel. I'm glad to see both Marvel and DC comic characters showing up in recent Little Golden Books. It was not that long ago that Little Golden Books stopped using licenced properties in favor of original titles such as the The Little Red Caboose and Scruffy the Tugboat. Once that happened, it became harder and harder to find stores that stocked the books. Now that they once again have started to publish licenced titles such as Marvel, DC and Disney, many stores have not returned to carrying  the books, which makes finding them (at least in my area) a bit of a challenge. As I said a couple of Mondays ago, I have been picking them up at a local drug store that carries them in its tiny book/magazine section.
Being a big comic book collector and a fan of Spider-man, this was a great addition to my collection. This particualr book is not a story, but rather a mini guide book, listing some of Spider-man's many villians as well as his orgin.

Sunday, September 30, 2012

TV Week Fall Preview 2012 - Part 1

It's that time of year again when I start watching even more TV than usual... and that is a lot! Its the new fall TV season, which brings with it a new crop of shows for us to check out. Although each year there seems to be less and less new stuff I am interested, there are a few shows that look like they may be worth a look.
Here in Canada we no longer have the print edition of TV Guide magazine, so I make sure to pick up our TV magazine, TV Week. As in previous years they have done two consecutive issues, the first one being the Fall Preview issue showcasing 48 new shows. The second issue is the returning series issue.

Today I will focus on the first issue and go though the list of new shows I am planning to check out:

Revolution - A sci-fi drama from J.J. Abrams and Eric Kripke, every source of energy abruptly stops working, causing the entire word to come to a halt. Fifteen years later, America has plunged back to the Dark Ages - literally - as what's left of the country is ruled by a despot who sends armed militia groups to terrorize the small agrarian communities that have sprung up, while cities have become lawless, dangerous hives of criminal activity.
Looks like it could be good, but since its an hour long show, I may find it hard to devote the time to watch it, and its listed as a drama, so that gets points off for me. Bottom line, this will probably be my Terra Nova from last season, I recorded all the episodes on my DVR and then ended up deleting them all after watching about 20 minutes of the first episode.

Ben and Kate - a comedy following Kate who is a young single mother who dropped out of university after an accidental pregnancy, and missed out on her 20s while devoting herself to raising her young daughter.
I have already watched the first episode and I think that if they second episode is as good as the first, I won't be bothering to watch the third episode.

Anger Management - Charlie Sheen, the tiger blood drinking, duh winning reject from Two and Half Men, stars as an anger-management therapist in this new comedy.
I have already watch the first 6 episodes online over the summer and it seems pretty good. I watched some entertainment show that featured a sneak peek at the show and interviewed the cast etc. They kept saying who the cast was so amazing. I would disagree with that, as I find the cast to be a little underwhelming. Its a good show, but could be even better with a better supporting cast.

Go On - Newest comedy to star Matthew Perry. This time he is ordered by his boss to undergo 'life-change' counselling to get over his grief.
I have seen the first episode and it was good, but I liked his show from last year Mr Sunshine better.

The Mindy Project - Mindy, who's been promoted to star after years at The Office plays an OB/GYN who grew up obsessed with romantic comedies.
I was never a fan of Mindy Kaling on The Office, so was not expecting much from this one, and after one episode, I will not be returning. Definitely a chick  comedy.

Animal Practice - Veterinarian George Coleman loves animals but hates the people who own them. Dr. Coleman is in charge of an eccentric crew of vets and animal handlers in New York City's Crane Animal Hospital, a place so zany that a monkey named Dr. Rizzo wears a while coat and rides through the halls atop a tiny ambulance.
This new comedy has gotten such awful reviews that I bet I enjoy it!

Guys With Kids - This sitcom follows the adventures of a trio of recent fathers as they vainly keep trying to do the kind of cool guy stuff they used to before parenthood turned them into henpecked wusses who never have fun.
I saw the first episode and it was pretty funny. Probably will be my favorite of the new shows this season.

The Neighbors - Fed up with living in the city, the Weavers move to a sleepy suburb, but quickly realize their new neighbours are seriously weird. The Weavers discover, the entire cul-de-sac is inhabited by creepy green aliens who've taken human form and named themselves after famous sports figures.
I saw the first episode and really wanted to like it, but ended up finding it to be pretty lame. TV Week gave it a D+. I think the + was a little generous. Too bad, as this is the sort of silly stuff I love to watch.

Elementary - in modern-day NYC, a just-rehabbed addict named Sherlock Holmes meets Joan Weston, a former doctor hired to be Sherlock's 'sober companion" and keep him on the straight and narrow.
Another hour long drama series. Looks interesting, but not sure I will invest the time to watch it.

Malibu Country - New family sitcom staring Reba McEntire.
It does not premiere until November 2nd. If by then, I have stopped watching all the new shows above, then I may check this out.

The Midseason offerings look to have at least a few interesting shows. Here is what I will be checking out when we get to midseason:

The Family Tools - Prodigal son Jack Shea returns to home to help run the family construction business after his gruff dad suffers a heart attack.

Friend Me - A comedy about 20-something best friends show have just moved to L.A. from Indiana.

The Goodwin Games - Comedy about estranged siblings who are forced to compete in an ongoing trivia contest is they want to inherit their recently deceased father's millions.

How to Live with Your Parents - A single mother is forced to move back in with her eccentric parents.

Next Caller - Stand-up comic Dane Cook plays a macho shock jock forced to co-host his raunchy radio show with a liberal feminist.

Package Deal - Comedy that follows three overly close brothers and the women who comes between them.

1600 Penn - Bill Pullman and Jenna Elfman are America's President and First Lady in this political comedy described as Modern Family meets The West Wing.

Click to see full size version of 2012 Fall TV schedule