Friday, April 24, 2015

movie time.

Don't worry, I'm not gone, just bein lazy.
Friends! I'm alive! I know it's been a slow week around these parts and I don't even have a good excuse, I'm just seriously slacking in the blogging category of my life. Hey, it happens. I'm going to make it up to you though... I'm going to make it up to you by recommending a ton of movies, ALL of which I watched on the airplane to/from Australia (because there's a lot of time for movie watching when you're flying to/from Australia!) So go buy some microwave popcorn and head into the weekend armed with this something-for-everyone movie recommendations list!

This documentary tells the stories you never knew you were dying to know about the backup singers for some of music's greatest legends. From those who are happy to stand behind the star to others who simply couldn't make into the spotlight, this movie is a fascinating look at the voices you've always known, even though you never knew the person behind them.

* 12 Years a Slave
So this isn't going to be a feel good film, but it is going to move you. I never got around to seeing 12 Years a Slave in theaters (because motivating to see something sad can be tough) but I'm so glad I mustered up the courage to watch this film because it is outstanding. Based on a true story of a free man captured and imprisoned for years as a slave, this movie tells a story you need to know, via actors who deliver exceptional performances. 

* Julie and Julia
The perfect delightfully warm, wonderful and sweet anecdote to my previous recommendation, Julie and Julia is a hit from several years back that I just enjoyed for the first time. Amy Adams and Meryl Streep are perfection in this lighthearted story of two women (a modern amateur chef/writer Julie and the famous Julia Childs early in her life/career) discovering themselves through cooking, perseverance and love from their wonderful spouses. My only warning: prepare to salivate, the food porn in this flick is divine!

* Foxcatcher
This Oscar nominated film from 2014/15 didn't get very much buzz or wide circulation in theaters and I have absolutely NO idea why! An almost unrecognizable Steve Carrell plays the wealthy (and creepy) John duPont with astounding poise, while Channing Tatum portrays an Olympic wrestler in what I feel is the most significant role of his career. Add in the always talented Mark Ruffalo and a shocking true story and you have 1 fantastic movie experience. (Note: it starts off a little slow, but stick with it!)

* and then there's Birdman...
I did not get this movie. I did not get it at all. I'm putting it on this list because I watched it (how do you not watch the film that took home the award for Best Picture!?) but I cannot say I recommend it. I don't even know what to say about it... it was WEIRD. It was artsy. It was interesting? Give it a shot, maybe you'll fare better than I did!

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

On fleek. Seriously..? NO.

Ummm, but WHY!?
I would like to officially register a complaint with the creators of all things hip and slang regarding the term "on fleek". On fleek, really? What the hell does that even mean and why does it seem to apply to everything, but especially eyebrows!?

According to Urban Dictionary, "On Fleek" can be defined as the quality of being perfect, or on point

Now I can get behind "on point", I use it often, but fleek!? Why? How? My uncool, old lady, down-the-rabbit-hole-ness continued (because I don't think one can claim any degree of coolness when searching for the meaning and origins of current slang terms) when I found this very informative article (which also provided some comfort because turns out I'm not alone in my geekiness):

"So where exactly did fleek come from? And why are eyebrows, even now, still the things that are most often said to be on fleek? One article on PopSugar.com suggests an answer for these questions: Fleek—which is a variation of "flick," a word well known to makeup-lovers—is when eyebrows are perfectly groomed, filled, and shaped."
Who knew right!? And how did "on fleek" explode into our popular lexicon you ask? Well my friends over at VisualThesaurus were able to explain that too! They write "[On fleek] isn't recorded again until June 21, 2014, when a young black woman named Peaches Monroee (yes, with two E's) uploaded an eight-second video to Vine. In the video, she seems to be preparing to go out and have a good time, and halfway through, she asserts that her eyebrows are "on fleek." The video went viral, and it now has more than 27 million views."

The article goes on, showing proof of just how huge being "on fleek" is now adays, from musicians rapping it to Denny's tweeting it (about their hashbrowns. Seriously.) but I'm just not sure I can jump on the bandwagon... Apparently when it comes to what the cool kids are saying these days, I'm am seriously not on fleek. 

Friday, April 17, 2015

It's just one of them days...

When in doubt, ice cream.
Do you ever have one of those days where you're walking back to your desk with a salad in your hand, but you pass the Mr. Softee truck and you're like, "F it, I need some f*cking ice cream right now", so you buy the ice cream and you walk the walk of dread back to your desk feeling just a little bit lighter because goddamnit  ice cream is good? Do you ever have one of those days? I am having one of those days. Let me tell you, the ice cream was delicious.

So TGIF to those of you having just one of them days and to those of you smooth sailing into your weekend (you lucky ducks). I suppose we'll all meet up at happy hour and officially make the switch from ice cream to beer. Mmmm. 

Here to make you smile (and get teary eyed if you're a big ol dork like me) is this insanely cute video. (Now send me some strength to avoid a second trip to that ice cream truck:)


Thursday, April 16, 2015

Hump Day on delay

child genius, obviously.
Since today is Throwback Thursday (#TBT), I thought we could throw it alllll the way back to yesterday, hump day, and share some delightful distractions from around the web. Enjoy!!

* Some girlie, lovely cellphone wallpapers for all my girlie, lovely ladies.
* How to do LA with little kiddos (and make sure everyone has a good time!)
* Holy cow, these images (based on models) of animals in the womb are AMAZING!
* From Blair Waldorf and Carrie Bradshaw to Chandler Bing and Jerry Seinfeld, ever wonder how much your favorite Manhattan apartment from tv would really cost to live inf?
* This is 30 (via exPress-o)
* I think it's gonna be this blunt cut with this "tortoise/ecaille" color for summer. Thoughts? 
* Viva la smart ass!

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Just say goodbye (to just)

This just has to be goodbye!
Not too long ago, I shared this link which had some fantastic career tips from female entrepreneurs. I read the lengthy post all the way through and not shockingly, only 1 or 2 of the tips actually stuck with me (I have terrible retention for things I read/watch) but what stuck, REALLY stuck. Specifically, tip #3 from Amanda Hesser and Merrill Stuffs of FOOD52"Eliminate the word "just" from your vocabulary—as in "Just checking on this!" You'll immediately feel more confident."

Have you ever stopped to examine your writing, especially work emails, to see how often you say "just"? I haven't been able to stop doing it since I read that tip and holy whoa do I say "just" a lot. "Just a friendly reminder...", "I just wanted to share...", "I just thought that..." And you know what? Hesser and Stuffs are totally right! When you eliminate that pesky little "just" you immediately sound stronger, more confident and certainly more direct.

So is there still a time and a place for "just" in our lives? Of course. We [just] need to remember that sometimes we should [just] say it directly instead of beating around the bush!

Monday, April 13, 2015

Insta-riffic

Happy sunny spring Monday my friends! Fresh off a delightful weekend filled with spring weather, QT with my hubby and delicious food (is there really anything better?) I'm cruising into today with a smile on my face and determination to avoid "the Mondays" (yaaaay Monday?!?) To help keep the mood bright and light, I wanted to share with you some of my favorite Instagram accounts to follow. 

Instagram is without question my favorite social media platform and escaping into my feed is a guilty pleasure I indulge in multiple times a day. So who am I following to fill my day with beautiful, delicious and delightful distractions? Check em out (click on the name to link directly to the Insta account and start following!):

The tongue-baring King Charles Cavaliers of Insta sensation TheFatJewish (you're following him right!?) these two pups are adorable, the captions are hysterical and there is no limit to the ridiculous costumes and locations they will pop up in.

Allowing my inner geek flag to fly on this one... Pete Souza is the Chief Official White House Photographer and I love looking at his images of the President in action, places the President is traveling, behind the scenes in the White House and of course pictures of Bo and Sunny, the Obamas adorable dogs!

The Insta account of London based stylist and photographer Charlotte Love (how great is that name!?), these colorful and playful images from her current projects usually make me smile as I pass them in my feed.

I don't remember how I discovered Theron Humphrey's awesome Insta feed, but I'm sure glad that I did. A talented photographer and adventurer with companion Maddie (his adorable and photogenic dog) always by his side, prepare to smile at Maddie's amazing poses and some stunning scenery.

For my fellow wanderlust'ers, this account was created to keep our travel-hungry souls satisfied.

This restaurant review website includes NY, SF, CHI and DEN and the pictures will make your mouth water. I click through and if the location looks tasty and is in my city, I add the restaurant to my "Favorites" map for next time I'm drawing a blank on where to go eat!

This account is only pictures of beds. Beds in gorgeous, fabulous, exotic settings. The captions are witty and the resting places are divine. If you like to sleep, this one's for you!

Do you like ice cream? Do you want to salivate over pictures while ingesting zero calories? Thank you Instagram for bringing me all the ice cream my waistline could never handle in photo format (and for providing the exact location of where to procure said ice cream in case I decide I just NEED a scoop of my own:)

Thursday, April 9, 2015

Strong is the New Pretty.

I am always drawn to ad campaigns, articles and stories about ways we can instill gender equality in children and how to raise young men and women without typecasting their surroundings as "girlie" or "boyish". I'm definitely guilty of defaulting to "you look so pretty" with little girls and buying toy trucks for boys, but improving the message is important - we need to approach raising boys and girls more equally, specifically without marginalizing girls into believing that strength, smarts, energy and leadership skills make them a tomboy, know-it-all, wild or bossy. There's no doubt then, why these amazing photographs caught my eye.




Taken by Kate T. Parker, a mother, wife and commercial photographer, Parker says "I suddenly realized, wow, all of my strongest images are of my girls just being themselves — their freckled, emotional, sometimes dirty, messy selves.” How badass do her daughters and their friends look in these pictures!?



And what I love even more about Parker's viewpoint is that she doesn't mean to exclude anyone - "the project, she clarifies, is not about “taking out” girls who like the color pink and act in ways that might be considered traditionally feminine. Quite the opposite, actually: “Whatever your kids are, celebrate that.""

Isn't it awesome to imagine a world where a girl who loves to run around outside and a boy who prefers playing with a toy kitchen doesn't seem "off"? A world where kids get to be their authentic selves without culturally encouraged norms pushing them to behave, dress or think a certain way? I think we're in better shape than we've ever been before, but there's still a long way to go. Baby steps for our babies though right!?

ps - If you're interested in some AWESOME kids clothing that totally does away with gender stereotypes (but still looks adorable), click HERE.