Sunday, January 31, 2010

Come On, Spring!

It is only two days away from Ground Hog Day and I am truly ready for Spring to get here. I have the garden cleared and ready for planting, but I need the weather to catch up. The same goes for my wardrobe. I'm looking at dresses mostly and I'm gravitating towards anything sweet and colorful right now, so be prepared to deal with my wishful thinking until we warm up.

I was just minding my own business, checking out what new things Banana Republic has online, when I found these GORGEOUS dresses! If you aren't wishing for Spring to get here fast after looking at these, then your heart is a big block of ice.

Many of these are only available online, so get your credit cards out and get them while they last.

Don't forget to use your Gap/BR/ON cards today (January 31) and enter the code CARD25 at checkout to get 25% off your purchase!

Thanks for looking and let me know which dress(es) you think truly evokes thoughts of Spring.

Friday, January 29, 2010

I'm Being Blackmailed by Nina Garcia

Well, not really, but it kind of feels like it.

You probably know what I mean though. Somehow I have "subscribed" to Marie Claire magazine and I keep getting emails with an invoice to pay my bill. It is only $8.00, but I hate this crap. It is like I am being hounded every other day by the kid down the street to buy a box of cookies. Sure, it looks good and it doesn't cost a ton, but do I really NEED a box of thin mints or a magazine subscription? (All apologies to the Girls Scouts, I just used you as an example because who doesn't love thin mints?)

Could I spend that $8 on something better? Probably.

Do I enjoy Marie Claire magazine? I'm not sure if I like it more than the next fashion mag.

Do I love Nina Garcia? Of course I do, but does that mean I need to read her magazine?

If I keep ignoring these emails, what are the odds that Nina herself will show up at my door to get my payment? Would she have change for $20 or would I need to write a check? On second thought, I should just pay up so that I don't have to worry about having on my finest in case she does show up.

So, I guess I could give it a shot for $8. It isn't that much.

Ok, here you go Nina. Don't spend it all in one place.

Now how do I tell my husband that I have another fashion magazine subscription besides the InStyle one he bought me?

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Screen Actors Guild Best Dressed

I love red carpet events and seeing what everyone is wearing. The dresses, the hair and makeup as well as the jewelry. I absolutely love it.

There were some lovely, well turned out ladies for the SAG this year and here are a few of my favorite looks.

Lea Michele looked stunning in her green Malandrino dress. I can't help but compare her to Vivian Leigh as Scarlett O'Hara when she is dressed in green.

Lea's hair and makeup were also my favorite of the night. A++++

Christina Applegate looked divine in her sky blue chiffon Roberto Cavalli gown.

Carey Mulligan from An Education in a red Lanvin dress. She looked adorable.

Diane Kruger's dress fit perfectly and her hair and makeup were very elegant, but I really can't get past the color of the dress. It just isn't pretty, IMO.

The Most Improved red carpet star goes to Mariah Carey. After her distasteful get up from the Golden Globes, she looked very appropriate and lovely for the SAG's. I did think her teeny tiny purse was a bit humorous though. Whoever was her stylist needs to be given a bonus and asked to stick around for future events.

So, who was on your list of best dressed SAG ladies? Best hair and makeup? Who was on your worst dressed list?

Friday, January 22, 2010

Anthropologie Preview - Midcentury Proper

I just got a sneak peek at the new "line" that will be out shortly at Anthro, and I have to say that I am in L-O-V-E!

This is what they have to say about it:

“All her life, she had wanted to teach at Wellesley College. So, when a position opened in the Art History department, she pursued it single-mindedly until she was hired.”

And so goes the opening voiceover from the film Mona Lisa Smile. Like many moviegoers, we were blown away with the film’s costume design, delighting each pillbox hat, peter-pan collar and spectator pump.

The preppy-prim garb of Mona Lisa Smile inspired our latest batch of outfits, debuting this Monday, January 25, on Here’s an exclusive preview of the six looks, which we like to call “midcentury proper.”

I think they summed up the feeling of the look nicely. On to the show:

The look is very feminine, retro and modern all at the same time. It would also be a look I would be happy to wear and easy for just about anyone to pull off. What are your thoughts? Is there an outfit that stands out for you and which one is it?

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Review: Revlon PhotoReady Foundation *NEW*

I believe it was last year (or perhaps the year before?) that I delved into the world of High Definition makeup and I haven't looked back. For those who don't know, High Def foundations are those that have been formulated to perform the best under the rigors of the camera lens for HD TV and other media. The difference it makes in ones appearance under those circumstances vs. non HD foundations, is astounding. I remember watching the Oscars a couple of years ago when they started broadcasting it in HD, and I can tell you, Renee Zellweger looked like a man in drag with all of that non- HD makeup piled on. I have that vision burned in my memory. I'm just waiting for a late night pizza indulgence to trigger nightmares with those images. *Shudder*

So, what about us mere mortals? We can benefit from HD foundation as well. It is foundation that really does look like real skin and not skin that is obviously made up. It also photographs beautifully and who doesn't have their photo taken from time to time?

Before I begin with my review, I need to confess that my fav HD foundation has been Makeup Forever's HD foundation. I swear by it, but when I read that Revlon was coming out with a HD foundation, I had to give it a try. After all, who wouldn't want to spend less these days? The MUFE is around $40 and the Revlon is around $13. It's a no brainer.

Here goes...

I found the Revlon PhotoReady in of all places, my local grocery store. It was odd in that I have checked with Walgreens, CVS, Target and Walmart with no success in finding it. Lo and behold there was a display in both my local Kroger and the HEB markets while I was picking up groceries. So, word to the wise, check you local grocer for this and it will most likely be featured in a special display until they work it into the Revlon case.

I bought the shade called Shell which is the next to the lightest shade they offer. (They only carry 12 shades. BOO!) I brought it home and put some on the back of my hand to see it all but disappear... this is a great sign! So off to the mirror I go. I decided to apply with my fingers instead of a sponge or foundation brush to see how it did. It did beautifully. It really blended in nicely with no streaks or blotches. I then took a couple of photos (yikes!) in both natural light and with a flash. I have decided to post them so you can make a valued decision, but bear in mind that I am no spring chicken. For your consideration, I give you...

Natural light

with flash

Bottom line... I still like the Makeup Forever just a wee bit better for the abundance of color choices as well as the finish is just a bit nicer, but the price difference is definitely in Revlon's favor. If nothing else, it is a good alternative. B+

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Happy New Year! Let's Make Soup... Again.

I'm sure everyone is thinking that my favorite thing to make is soup. Well I'll tell you what, I have had soup on my mind a lot lately thanks to the rather cold for Houston temps that we are having. I guess I'll just call it a series and keep on trucking.

Please excuse the lack of photography this time. I was just trying to get lunch on the table and I was stirring like a mad fool for a while and I just couldn't stop.

Enough commentary, now on with the show!

This soup just sounded so good and it fit the bill for comfort food after ringing in the new year.

Baked Potato Soup

2 tbsp. butter
1/4 of a large onion, chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
4 baking potatoes (about 2-1/2 lbs.)
2/3 cup all-purpose flour
6 cups milk (you can use any percent of milk fat you prefer. I used 2% for 5 cups and 1 cup of fat free half and half because I had it hanging around the fridge.)
1 cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese, divided
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
1 cup sour cream (you can use reduced fat if you choose)
3/4 cup chopped green onions, divided
6 bacon slices, cooked and crumbled
Cracked black pepper (optional)

Preheat oven to 400°F.

Pierce potatoes with a fork; bake at 400° for 1 hour or until tender. Cool. Peel potatoes; coarsely mash. (Or if you are pinched for time, you can use the microwave and blast them for 5 minute intervals until cooked through. That is what I did.)

Fry at least 6 pieces of bacon (more if you like bacon, and who doesn't) until done. Place on paper towel to drain. Crumble when cool. Set aside.

In a large pot or Dutch oven, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the onions and garlic and sauté until soft, about 8 minutes.

Lightly spoon flour into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Place flour into the vegetables; gradually add milk, stirring with a whisk until blended. Cook over medium heat until thick and bubbly (about 8 minutes).

Add mashed potatoes, 3/4 cup cheese, salt, and 1/2 tsp. pepper, stirring until cheese melts. Remove from heat.

Stir in sour cream and 1/2 cup green onions. Cook over low heat 10 minutes or until thoroughly heated (do not boil).

Ladle 1-1/2 cups soup into each of 8 bowls. Sprinkle each serving with 1 1/2 tsp. cheese, 1-1/2 teaspoons green onions, and about 1 tbsp. bacon. Garnish with cracked pepper, if desired.

Serves 8.