Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Hot Hollywood Fashion Trends

When it comes to fashion, there is one place many of us look for inspiration: Hollywood. From florescent colored jeans to sweater dresses, we see A-list celebrities rocking these trends and we all want to try. Sometimes they work out, sometimes they don’t, but fashion is all about trial-and-error and finding what fits your personality best. So I’ve decided to put together a list of fashion trends worth trying and see if the true fashionista in you can embrace these hot styles!

Florescent Colored Pants
Brightly colored jeans and pants are becoming a super hot trend this spring and surely to continue into the summer! Colors range from hot pink (as seen here on House of Lies star Kristen Bell) to baby blue and sunshine yellow to cherry red. I haven’t gotten the guts to try this look yet but as I shop around and see more and more of this style in stores, I know I will soon. You can spot this trend in high-end stores and now even in budget friendly shops such as Target and Forever 21. A hot style and a bargain? Sold!

Denim On Denim
 Back in the 90s, denim on denim was all the rage. Once the millennium hit, this was looked at as one of the biggest fashion blunders. Now, as time as proved, what’s old is now new and this trend has now come back in style. As seen in this picture of Twilight star Ashely Greene, she emulated this look by pairing a great pair of dark skinny jeans with a light blue denim button-down and a pair of black flats. To change up this look, I pair this with my favorite beige-colored cowboy boots!

Sweater Dress
If you know me, you know that I love anything and everything sweaters. I have more sweaters than shirts in my closet. I love being warm and comfortable so this trend intrigues me greatly. Disney star Ashley Tisdale was recently spotted roaming the Hollywood streets wearing an off-white sweater dress and long black boots. And on cooler days you could pair this with some tights for a equally stylish (and warmer) look. This is definitely a trend I will be trying. Comfy and stylish? You can’t go wrong!

High-Waisted Bottoms
This trend go easily go awry and turn into a “mom jean” look so it’s important to be cautious of the type of high-waisted bottoms you purchase. The former O.C. starlet look adorable in a pair of high-waisted shorts on a sunny day in L.A. Another hot trend (that I happen to love the most) is the high-waisted skirt which can go multiple ways, such as pencil skirt or pleaded. Make sure while shopping to try on these bottoms and check every angle, as it can be a tricky style to pull off!

Chunky Scarves 
 Who doesn’t love scarves? They are warm and fashionable and add the perfect pop to every outfit. You can pair a scarf with a dress, jeans and blazer, sweaters.. The list goes on. Hilary Duff looked super cute as she kept warm traveling and paired this amazing gray scarf with jeans and a black leather jacket. Dress it up or down, scarves are always a perfect go-to accessory!

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Tuesday Tunes

Jana Kramer's "Why You Wanna" hasn't made it big on the radio waves yet (that I've heard), but her song has made it into CMT's morning music videos along with big country stars Toby Keith, Lady Antebellum, and Taylor Swift. Now that she's finally made it into the "big leagues," I'm confident that she'll be one of the biggest upcoming country stars this year. She's already a hit with CW audiences after playing Alex Dupre on the hit TV show One Tree Hill for the past three years. Fans have heard plenty of her voice on the show and with already developing a fan base, she's sure to do very well in the country music world!

My Tuesday Tune this week is a brand-new song from one of my favorite artists, Carrie Underwood. She debuted her new single "Good Girl" last week and it is already making the radio waves crazy! This is her first single off her brand new album (date of release is TBD) and if this song is any indication of the rest of her album then, dare I say, this may be her best yet! Carrie's voice is killer and reaches an even higher vocal range than we've heard from her yet! This girl can do no wrong! Enjoy!!


IHOP National Pancake Day Celebration

Calling all pancake-lovers! Today marks IHOP's 6th annual National Pancake Day Celebration. What does this mean for you? FREE PANCAKES, duh. Just show up at your local IHOP restaurant (keep in mind that they're giving away free food today so you may need to wait a little), as each of their chains will be participating. However, with everything free, there is a catch. This one isn't bad though. All IHOP asks of customers joining in the celebration, is that a donation is made, which will go to the Children's Miracle Network Hospitals as well as other local charities.

IHOP's National Pancake Day Celebration started in 2006, and since then, has raised approximately $8 million in donations. If you decide to join the celebration this year, you'll receive a short stack of (3) buttermilk pancakes-- for dine-in guests only.

This year, IHOP hopes to raise $2.7 million in donations, so if you have time to stop by for some delicious buttermilk pancakes, do it! Remember, IHOP's National Pancake Day celebration is only TODAY, Tuesday, February 28th. For more information, visit the official celebration website.

Monday, February 27, 2012

Best-Dressed List: 2012 Academy Awards

The 84th Annual Academy Awards sparkled and dazzled and it was not from the gold statue few lucky actors received. It was from all the jewels and straight-off-the-runway designer gowns the best of Hollywood showcased on Sunday night! Although a surprisingly underwhelming red carpet with few stand-out dresses, it is always fun to daydream about what I would look like on that carpet and in those thousand dollars gowns and million dollar jewels. Nonetheless, here is a peek of my best-dressed of the night!

Octavia Spencer
How more perfect could this night get for her? She took home the Oscar for Best Supporting Actress for her role in The Help and looked absolutely stunning on the red carpet. After keeping her promise that she would stay true to designer Tadashi Shoji throughout award season, she did not disappoint in this beautiful pale-gold beaded number that she accessorized with a Judith Leiber clutch and Neil Lane diamonds. This dress fit her perfectly and her hair and makeup made her look elegant and statuesque for her big night!

Rose Byrne 
The Bridesmaids beauty truly sparkled in a fully sequined, one shoulder Vivienne Westwood gown. The midnight blue (although looks like black in the picture) color looked perfect on the carpet and Byrne topped off this look with Jimmy Choo platforms! Well done, Rose!

Jessica Chastain
The Help star looked radiant in a hand-embroidered Alexander McQueen gown. This was a usual choice for The Oscars but the risk paid off. The combination of her hair style and makeup was a perfect choice and she sparkled in $2 million worth of Harry Winston diamonds. She even had to have a bodyguard with her to protect those diamonds. Can you imagine?

Angelina Jolie
This may look simple at first glance, but there is more to meet the eye in this black velvet Atelier Versace gown that Angelina donned on the red carpet. She kept it simple with natural hair and a red lip. She accessorized her gown with Neil Lane jewels and Salvatore Ferragamo peep-toe pumps. And of course, her best accessory, Brad Pitt!

Stacy Keibler
George Clooney’s lucky woman wore an incredible metallic gold Marchesa dress that may have been my favorite dress of the night. She looked glamorous with her old Hollywood hair and simple makeup. She matched her dress with Judith Leiber clutch and Lorraine Schwartz jewels.

Cameron Diaz
Although the star was not nominated, she looked great on the red carpet in this gorgeous Gucci gown and donned Tiffany & Co. jewels! With shimmery metallic’s down the bottom of her dress, she kept it simple, but elegant!

Jennifer Lopez
This woman can do no wrong. And she can never look bad. JLO sparkled on the red carpet in a plunging Zuhair Murad metallic gown. The form-fitting gown looked perfect on her body and with her hair back and signature makeup, she looked like perfection. If only we could all just look like Jenny from the block!

Milla Jovovich 
Milla made a stunning entrance in one of my FAVORITE Hollywood designers, Elie Saab. The shimmering white was gorgeous and she looked nothing short of glamorous on the carpet. One of my absolute favorites of the night!

Awards Show Recap: 2012 Academy Awards

Now it is all over. Award season has come and gone. No more fancy dresses, designer jewels, millionaires giving millionaires awards. Let’s give this a moment of silence…. Okay, I’m being a bit dramatic, but this was my Superbowl. The day I look forward to all year, and now I have an entire year to wait to celebrate again.

Host Billy Crystal entertaining the crowd in the opening act.
 On to the awards… It started off great with host Billy Crystal returning to the stage for hosting duties. Although the award for Best Sound will NOT be presented to the 2012 Academy Awards, the show went on without a glitch. Billy was much better than the disastrous Anne Hathaway/James Franco host debacle of last year, and gave a solid opening act and kept the show running (on time!) and well throughout the three hour time slot. 

Streep, Dujardin and Spencer all accepting their awards.
 As for the winners… Was anyone shocked that The Artist was the big winner of the night? Me either. I bet the people of France are extremely happy right now. Even with Jean Dujardin saying in his Best Actor speech: “I love your country!” Yes, Jean beat Clooney. Those two were neck and neck and although my vote was for George Clooney’s brilliant performance in The Descendants, I am happy for Jean. The other will-she-won’t-she award of the night was the race between Viola Davis and Meryl Streep for Best Actress. The award ended up going to Meryl for her portrayal of Margaret Thatcher in The Iron Lady and I’m happy that if it wasn’t Viola, it was Meryl. Meryl is by far one of the best actresses of our time and deserves every nomination and award. My favorite moment of the night? Octavia Spencer winning Best Supporting Actress for her amazing performance in The Help. Her speech was so moving, it brought me to tears. Her award was so well-deserved and I am so happy for her! 

Here is a list of all the winners at the 84th Annual Academy Awards:

Best Picture: The Artist
Best Actor: Jean Dujardin, The Artist
Best Actress: Meryl Streep, The Iron Lady
Best Supporting Actor: Christopher Plummer, Beginners
Best Supporting Actress: Octavia Spencer, The Help
Best Director: Michel Hazanavicius, The Artist
Best Animated Short Film: The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore
Best Documentary Short Film: Saving Face
Best Live Action Short Film: The Shore
Best Original Screenplay: Midnight In Paris
Best Adapted Screenplay: The Descendants
Best Original Song: “Man Or Muppet,” The Muppets
Best Original Score: The Artist
Best Visual Effects: Hugo
Best Animated Feature: Rango
Best Documentary Feature: Undefeated
Best Sound Mixing: Hugo
Best Sound Editing: Hugo
Best Film Editing: The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo
Best Makeup: The Iron Lady
Best Costume Design: The Artist, Mark Bridges
Best Art Direction: Hugo
Best Cinematography: Hugo

Relive some of last night's best winning moments...


Friday, February 24, 2012

Movie Review: Gone

Vanished. Disappeared. Missing. These are all terms used in Summit Entertainment’s new mystery thriller, Gone. This film could have easily gone wrong, and not in the way the film title was intended. But this film takes a different turn and is genuinely thrill-induced and left me at the edge of my seat at every turn!

In this psychological thriller the young woman named Jill, played by Amanda Seyfried, is reeling from a traumatic experience that included getting abducted and left in a hole in the middle of the woods to die, that has left her scarred. Fairly soon into the movie her sister Molly goes missing and Jill fears she has been abducted by the same man in attempt to kidnap Jill again since she has been the only woman to escape him. After the police writes her off, she goes on a mission to find her sister and kill her kidnapper. 

The premise and story line of the film is quite redundant and can so easily fall short, but I was pretty impressed by the upkeep throughout the film and Seyfried’s ability to keep the story believable and thrilling. Though a little predictable, it is enticing and for anyone who enjoys and mystery, this will be the movie for you. And if you enjoy beautiful scenic backgrounds in your movies, this one will not disappoint. Set in Portland, Oregon, the location becomes a character in itself. Portland is famous for its dark, wet atmosphere and gives the film a certain edge that helps the storyline.

Although the film is not Oscar-worthy and definitely has its ups and downs, it’s a fun, action-packed thriller to go enjoy two hours in a theater.

Fun Findings Friday #7

Miranda Lambert Anti-Chris Brown Vid

At one of country singer, Miranda Lambert's recent concerts, a fan held up a sign saying "Take Notes Chris Brown," referring to Miranda's bold lyrics when it comes to dealing with men. As her band started playing "Gunpowder and Lead," Miranda spotted the sign and ran over to grab it, going off on a rant about how men beating up on women is never ok, saying, "my daddy taught me early on in life how to use a shotgun." As if we didn't love Miranda Lambert enough already, she just became 10,000x greater with this. Kudos, Miranda!

The Hunger Games Nail Polish

Nail polish brand China Glaze will debut a special line of polish colors dedicated to The Hunger Games, officially available to purchase starting on March 1st, just in time for the films March 23rd theatrical release. Here is the official swatch chart of all the shades inspired by the nation of Panem! As fellow Hunger Game lovers, you can be sure we'll be checking these out and getting our nails pretty for the big premiere!

Taylor Swift and Zac Efron Sing To Ellen
Earlier this week Taylor Swift and Zac Efron appeared on The Ellen DeGeneres Show to promote their new animated flick, The Lorax! The best part of their appearance was surprising Ellen with a song dedicated to her. Watch and enjoy the two cute superstars serenade Ellen with the beat of Foster the People's "Pumped Up Kicks."


Thursday, February 23, 2012

Tasty Thursday: Mexican Dip

Happy Tasty Thursday! I wanted to switch things up today and share a tasty appetizer that you can easily make and have ready to serve in under 10 minutes, courtesy of my aunt. This is usually the dish I serve when guests are over, as it always turns out to be a big hit!

Mickey Mouse Bowl w/ Mexican Dip (in ears) & chips
What You'll Need (Ingredients):
8 oz. cream cheese
16 oz. sour cream
1 envelope taco mix
1 bag shredded cheese (Mexican blend)
diced tomatoes
black olives (optional)

Blend together 8 oz. of cream cheese, 16 oz sour cream, and taco mix.
Scoop out half of the dip to make the first layer of dip in your serving dish
Top the layer with cheese and diced tomatoes (olives optional)
Scoop out the rest of the dip and carefully put on top of first layer
Top the final layer with cheese and diced tomatoes (olives optional)

Don't forget to bust out the chips when you're done-- Tostitos scoops are my favorite to serve with this dip!

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

5 Funny Sites To Brighten Your Day

It's always nice to stumble across something that can instantly brighten your day. For me, it's something as little as finding a website that I can spend hours wasting time on, and laughing hysterically at. Here are 5 of my favorite "funny sites." I hope you enjoy them as much as I do!


This site is my absolute favorite for e-cards.. and just in general for getting some great laughs. Just like any other e-card site, you can sort by occassion. Someecards isn't afraid to be bold and say the things that people truly think but might not always say. Pay it forward and send one of their e-cards to someone you know, it'll brighten their day instantaneously!

People of Walmart

This hilarious website features pictures of various people spotted at Walmart stores. All I can say is my mind is blown at some of the "creatures" (as they call them on the People of Walmart site) that show up to the store. Have you ever spotted anything crazy at your Walmart? From now on make sure to snap a quick picture and upload it to the site!

Damn You Autocorrect

iPhone users will greatly appreciate this site, as every single user has experienced the wrath of autocorrect. Sure, the feature comes in handy plenty of times, but then there are other times when your words get completely distorted. It can be especially funny with the older iPhone users (ex. parents). One of my favorite personal experiences with it? Typing "Wahh" and getting "Wahhabi." Uhh, does ANYONE know what that means?

Awkward School Photos

We've all been there. Those super-awkward photos from your childhood, especially as the fashion trends change each decade. Spinning off of the original (Awkward Family Photos), this site will keep you entertained, looking at all of the different stages of school- elementary, middle, high school, and college, as well as the always-dreaded yearbook photos.

Dumb Tweets @ Brands

Social media is a huge way for companies and consumers to connect with each other. But have you ever wondered what some people are asking/saying to these companies on Twitter? This Tumblr featuring tweets to various brands will make you LOL.

* Photos taken directly from above-mentioned sites

Tuesday Tunes

Rachel: Grace Potter and The Nocturnals have been around for a while but have just begun getting noticed over the past year. My song pick for the week is "Goodbye Kiss," one of my favorites from their second album. The song is upbeat and with the combination of Grace's vocals and the beat of the song, you'll feel like you're lounging on vacation at a beach bar.

Kayla: My Tuesday Tune this week is "What Makes You Beautiful" by Alejandro Manzano of Boyce Avenue. If you're not acquainted with Boyce Avenue, you should be. Boyce Avenue is a group of talented singers who cover popular songs. They have a few CD's (all on iTunes) and a bunch of YouTube videos so I totally recommend you check them out! This song is my favorite cover they've done. It is so beautiful and Alejandro's voice is perfection!


Monday, February 20, 2012

Favorite Drugstore Makeup Finds

As a makeup and beauty lover, I’m constantly trying to find ways to get all my favorite high-end supplies at a cheaper price. Since not all of us can afford the same hair and makeup brands as Jennifer Aniston, I decided to put together a list of all my favorite drugstore beauty finds to help you all find the best for your buck!

CoverGirl NatureLuxe Silk Foundation:

CoverGirl NatureLuxe Foundation retails around $12.99

CoverGirl debuted a new line of natural cosmetics not too long ago. NatureLuxe is represented by country superstar Taylor Swift and right now consists of foundations, mascaras and lip colors. The NatureLuxe Silk Foundation is a great hydrating foundation, perfect for those with dry skin. It is a silky smooth foundation that has hints of cucumber water which makes it smell much better than other foundation brands. With numerous different shades it is easy to find the perfect color for you!

Revlon Photo Ready Foundation:

Revlon Photo Ready Foundation retails around $13.99

I just recently discovered Revlon’s Photo Ready Foundation and thought I’d try it out after wanting to switch up my foundations. Makeup is all about trial and error. But with this foundation, I was pleasantly surprised. It’s a very weightless foundation that gives a very even and long-lasting cover. With an easy access pump, this foundation is great for those in a hurry!


L’Oreal True Match Blush:

L'Oreal's True Match Blush retails around $10.99

L’Oreal’s True Match Blush is my absolute favorite blush I’ve ever bought at a drugstore. They have this blush in a variety of different shades! It’s a soft blush with an easy application. Although I do not use the mini brush that comes with it, I use a much larger one to help me accentuate and highlight everywhere I want to. I love this product! It is an excellent choice!

Eye Shadow

Almay Intense i-color Eye Shadows:

Almay Intense i-color retails around $7.49

Almay may be one of the smartest makeup companies around. They developed an eye shadow line called i-color that has formulated colors fit to every different eye color. They have a triple shadow container including a base color, an accent color and a highlighting color perfect for each individual to pop! I have green eyes and use the green eye shadows on a daily basis. Almay also recommends an eye liner and mascara color to go with your specific eye color too! I notice a huge difference in my eye color when using this as opposed to other shadows! So if you’re looking for your eyes to stand out and sparkle, here’s your winner!

Eye Liner

CoverGirl Liquiline Blast Liner:

CoverGirl Liquiline Eyeliner retails around $8.99

CoverGirl’s Liquiline Blast Liner is, in one word, amazing! I use it every single day religiously and recommend this to all my friends! You get intense color and staying power, never having to reapply throughout the day. Can I get an “amen”?? It also has a smudge sponge at the tip to help you create the perfect smoky eye and allows you to have a more natural eye or a dramatic look! It works as a liquid and pencil eyeliner in one and comes in variety of different colors!


Almay One Coat - Triple Effect Mascara:

Almay One Coat Triple Effect Mascara retails around $7.99

Mascaras can often times be really tricky and become a mission to find the best mascara around. In an effort to save money, Almay’s One Coat – Triple Effect Mascara is the way to go! It definitely adds the volume I so desperately want and even adds thickening. I’ve noticed it does also add a nice curl on its own, as well. Even without getting waterproof, I find a lasting effect with this one!

CoverGirl Lashblast Volume Blasting Mascara:

CoverGirl LashBlast Volume Mascara retails around $8.99

I love CoverGirl’s Lashblast Volume Blasting Mascara. The one in the orange container is my favorite, although CoverGirl has a variety of different types, depending on what look you’re searching for! I recommend the waterproof one in this brand because the regular mascara tends to be a little more liquidy. But nonetheless, one of my favorites and go-to mascaras!


CoverGirl NatureLuxe Gloss Balm:

CoverGirl NatureLuxe Lip Gloss Balm retails around $7.49

What I love about the NatureLuxe Gloss Balm is that it acts as a lipstick, a lip gloss and a lip balm all in one. It gives you the color of a stick, a hint of gloss and the moisture and protection as a balm. With a variety of great shades to choose from, it is hard to go wrong with this one!

Friday, February 17, 2012

Fun Findings Friday #6

Instagram Photo A Day Challenge

Our first fun finding this week is for all of you iPhone owners. If you don't have the Instagram app, we highly suggest you download it and participate in this awesome photo a day challenge. Each month, a list is put out consisting of a different subject/topic per day that you're challenged to photograph. We've always been big fans of Instagram, however, it wasn't until we discovered this awesome list that we greatly increased our use of the app. It's so much fun, and pretty addicting!

Split Decision Pie Pan

Ever had one of the moments in the kitchen and can't decide which dessert you want to make? If you're torn between which pies to make, the Split Decision Pie Pan (retailing for $18.95) is a wonderful asset for your kitchen! In fact, it's so great that it's currently backordered until next week. We can't wait to purchase one of these ourselves! Apple and Pumpkin Pie anyone?

Mark Zuckerberg's Pinterest

Our third fun finding of the week is Mark Zuckerberg's Pinterest site. The Facebook CEO joined the newest (and currently hottest) social networking site earlier this week and already has close to 4,500 followers! Although he doesn't have full boards (some are completely empty), it's awesome to see him supporting his fellow social networking sites and being active on them! His boards include: Overwhelmingly Spectacular, Random Stuff I Like, For My Mouth, and What building inspires you? Zuckerberg even has a board filled with snapshots of his friends' iPhone homescreens (which inspired us to change ours)!


Thursday, February 16, 2012

Tasty Thursday: Sugar Cookies

In honor of Valentine's Day earlier this week, I whipped up some delicious homemade sugar cookies-- heart-shaped, of course.


What You'll Need (Ingredients):
1 & 1/2 cups sugar
2 & 3/4 cups flour
1 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 cup butter
1 egg
1 heart-shaped cookie cutter (optional)

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
Mix together: 1 cup butter, 1 & 1/2 cups sugar, 1 tsp. vanilla extract, 1 egg, 1 & 3/4 cups flour.
Slowly mix in 1/2 tsp. baking powder, 1 tsp. baking soda, 1 cup flour.

Roll out cookie dough and use cookie cutter to make heart-shape (optional) or roll dough into balls.
Put dough on cookie tray and place in oven, bake for 8 minutes.

Cookie dough in various heart-shaped sizes
 Place cookies on cooling rack for 3-5 minutes and then they're all done. Happy Baking!
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