My special needs daughter and I went to the movies last weekend mostly because the outside temperatures resembled three of Snow White’s little dudes … Drippy, Sticky and Hot. Yep, it is precisely the reason the two of us have not managed to get ourselves around the block for a walk but only once this summer. It is OK though. Mimi and I, we like to snuggle up together in a frosty theater with a bag of warm popcorn and a cold carbonated beverage between us. Of course it is always a major bonus when the movie is noteworthy. Did I mention we saw “Toy Story 3?” If you haven’t seen it yet, put it on your bucket list of things to do this summer … even if you have to rent a kid to see it. The movie is the final installment, and in Mimi’s and my humble opinion, the finest flick in the animated trilogy. Oh, and don’t miss the short animated cartoon before the main event. Those Pixar peeps really had all their quack-quacks in a neat little row with that clever jewel. But I digress. In a roasted peanut shell, “Toy Story 3” is about a toy box chock full of familiar playthings and their owner. There’s Woody, Buzz, Hamm the Piggy Bank, Mr. and Mrs. Potato Head and I forget what the name of the cute little cowgirl is. She’s pretty adorable—freckles and all. Anyway, Andy is now 17 and about to head off to college. Hey, it was bound to happen. It is a time of transition for the lad and the beloved toys who have shared his life. In case you missed the first two installments, all the fun between Andy and toys appear in flashbacks. No need to rent the first two to get the gist of the story. The movie sure brought back memories. Geez, I still remember the day our oldest left for her freshman year of college way back in 1998. We moved Katie into a dorm suite in Austin that would be shared with three young ladies. Many hours later after getting everything hooked up and set up, hubby and I left to drive home. The girls each had their beds all made up with their favorite stuffed animal right on their pillows. Katie’s was a fluffy white bunny. Ripped the heart right out of my chest. If I remember correctly, it took a couple of months till a new one grew back. But getting back to the movie. I don’t want to give away too much of the “Toy Story 3” movie but Woody, Buzz and the whole gang have this amazing adventure loaded with lots of tension, tenderness, destructive toddlers, misunderstandings and lots of laughs. There’s even an evil teddy bear that smells like strawberries. I know … who knew demented could smell so good? Thank goodness we never had the amount of “Toy Story” tension at the Frantz house with the kids leaving home. But it was never easy. Our youngest, he went to college far away; way too far to drive. They didn’t allow the cadets to drive, and he really couldn’t take a lot of stuff with him anyway. I never liked putting Ricky on an airplane with his footlocker. It was very unsatisfying standing on my tip toes to hug my son goodbye and then watch him walk through a security line. Like Andy’s mom in the movie, in a couple of months we’ll be having another one of those familiar “transitions” at the Frantz house. Ricky leaves for the Air Force for Officer’s Training School in early September. I predict it will be another heart ripper. My guess is parents aren’t allowed to participate with moving in. It’s probably not a good idea anyway. I wouldn’t want everyone in the Air Force to get the impression Ricky’s mom is the weepy sort. But that is weeks away. Like Scarlett O’Hara in “Gone with the Wind,” I won’t think about that right now. The nice thing about summer movies is there are always new potential entertaining kiddy blockbusters coming out. Mimi and I have decided that “Ramona and Beezus” and “Nanny McPhee Returns” have box office potential. Of course there is also “The Karate Kid.” Mimi and I haven’t seen that one yet. Katie mentioned the other day she saw it with friends and loved it. Just so you know … Katie says to bring a freshly-squeezed hanky. You will need to use it ... precisely twice. Dixie Frantz is a long-time Kingwood resident and newspaper columnist since 1996. E-mail Dixie with your comments at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

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