ellen's thoughts

Well, the countdown is on. Today another one's gone, and in two weeks it's all over. I'm really gonna miss Oprah.

"American Idol" was off the chain last night. The first round of songs were about inspiration, and I have to say I felt very inspired. I decided to pick up the harp. But Portia told me it was far too heavy.

Lady Gaga did a great job as mentor for the second half of the show. She would have been the mentor for the first half as well, but her egg stalled out on the freeway.

At this point, all of the contestants are extremely talented. I think Lauren has shown the most growth out of anyone in the competition. James has been consistently good throughout the entire show. But my favorite performer of the night was Haley.

I can't believe how strong Haley was to sing live in front of millions of people, face harsh criticism, and then get up and sing again. I don't know how she did it. Last week my gardener told me my azaleas looked a little dry. This week when he was here, I hid behind the sofa.

I know it might be controversial, but I'm gonna go on the record and say it: I think they're all in it to win it.

Jennifer Lopez talked to Ellen about being a judge on "American Idol" -- and the challenges she's facing in the new role.

american idol videos

View photos of Ellen with "American Idol" stars!

photo gallery: american idol