Weekly family rail, with a look at “Hellboy II,” tips on picking the best cloth diapers and more.
Family Screening Room
“Hellboy II: The Golden Army”
Rated: PG-13 (for sequences of sci-fi action and violence, and some language)
Length: 110 minutes
Synopsis: With a signature blend of action, humor and character-based spectacle, the saga of the world's toughest, kitten-loving hero from hell continues to unfold in "Hellboy 2: The Golden Army." After an ancient truce existing between humankind and the invisible realm of the fantastic is broken, hell on Earth is ready to erupt. A ruthless leader who treads the world above and the one below defies his bloodline and awakens an unstoppable army of creatures. Now it's up to Hellboy (Ron Perlman) to battle the merciless dictator and his marauders. Along with his expanding team in the Bureau for Paranormal Research and Development -- pyrokinetic girlfriend Liz (Selma Blair), aquatic empath Abe (Doug Jones) and protoplasmic mystic Johann -- the BPRD will travel between the surface strata and the unseen magical one, where creatures of fantasy become corporeal. And Hellboy, a creature of two worlds who's accepted by neither, must choose between the life he knows and an unknown destiny that beckons him.
Violence/gore rating: 4
Sexual-content rating: 2
Profanity rating: 3
Scary/tense-moments rating: 4
Drugs/alcohol rating: 3
Family Time rating: 3.5. “Hellboy II” is similar in many ways to the first “Hellboy,” so if you’re familiar with that one, you’ll know what to expect. If not, this comic book movie is about in line with other superhero movies of the summer (“Iron Man,” “Hulk”) – i.e. it’s probably not ideal for youngsters.
(Ratings are judged on a five-point scale, with 5 being “bad for kids” and 1 being “fine for kids.”)
“Twilight (The Twilight Saga, Book 1),” by Stephenie Meyer
Pages: 544 pages
Ages: 12 and older
As Shakespeare knew, love burns high when thwarted by obstacles. In “Twilight,” an exquisite fantasy by Stephenie Meyer, readers discover a pair of lovers who are supremely star-crossed. Bella adores beautiful Edward, and he returns her love. But Edward is having a hard time controlling the blood lust she arouses in him -- because he's a vampire. At any moment, the intensity of their passion could drive him to kill her, and he agonizes over the danger. But Bella would rather be dead than part from Edward, so she risks her life to stay near him, and the novel burns with the tension of their dangerous and necessarily chaste relationship. Meyer has achieved quite a feat by making this scenario completely human and believable. She begins with a familiar YA premise (the new kid in school), and lulls us into thinking this will be just another realistic young adult novel. The precision and delicacy of Meyer's writing lifts this wonderful novel beyond the limitations of the horror genre to a place among the best of YA fiction. (Amazon.com)
Kids Kitchen: Granola Balls
2 cups old-fashioned rolled oats
1/2 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
1/2 cup honey
1/4 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup 365 Organic Everyday Value Hullabaloo Mix or other favorite trail mix
Preheat the oven to 350. Spread the oats and coconut on a cookie sheet. Place in the oven and toast for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until lightly browned. Meanwhile, combine the peanut butter, honey and brown sugar in a small saucepan over medium heat. Cook until the brown sugar has completely dissolved, stirring continuously so as to prevent scorching. Add the toasted oats and coconut to the peanut butter mixture along with the trail mix and stir to combine. Set aside to cool for 10 minutes. Working with dampened hands, shape into 12 one-inch balls and refrigerate for at least an hour before serving. (www.wholefoodsmarket.com)
Play Inside: “Trouble”
Ages: 5 and older
It's the classic race-and-chase game with the PopoMatic die-rolling bubble! Pop the bubble and hop your pegs around the track. Land on an opponent's peg to bump it back home, but don't you get bumped back, or you're in “Trouble.” Keep poppin' and hoppin' to get all four of your pegs to the finish line first. “Trouble” includes plastic game unit with PopoMatic die roller, gameboard, 16 plastic playing pegs and four rubber feet. This also makes an ideal travel game, as the pieces fit into the board rather than just resting on it.
Tip of the Week: Picking cloth diapers
Here is advice from three veteran cloth-diapering moms on how to get started -- and stick with -- cloth diapering:
- Do your research. Web sites like DiaperPin.com are a good starting place.
- Try different types and brands to know what is best for you.
- When in doubt, go with the tried and true type. Some popular brands include Fuzzi Bunz, BumGenius and Happy Heinys.
- Don't give up. Moms shouldn't despair if cloth diapering doesn't seem to be working for them right away. Get support from a local mom who also uses cloth diapers, for example. And if the environment is one concern that pushed you to cloth diapering, keep that in mind. (ARA)
Pet Tip: If your pet is bitten or scratched by a potentially rabid animal
If your dog, cat or ferret is bitten by another mammal, don't touch your pet with bare hands, as this could expose you to saliva from the other animal. Wear gloves and a long-sleeved shirt to handle your pet. Keep him or her in a confined area, and call your veterinarian. If a pet without a current rabies vaccination is bitten by a wild animal, and the wild animal cannot be captured for testing, the pet might have to be quarantined for as long as six months. To prevent this, always keep your pets' rabies vaccination current.
For more tips, visit the Humane Society’s Web site at www.hsus.org.
GateHouse News Service