Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Holiday Movies

Every year I make a list of Christmas movies I'm going to watch during the holiday season. My fave Christmas movies include: White Christmas, The Grinch, Love Actually, It's a Wonderful Life, Christmas in Connecticut, The Family Stone, Jingle All the Way, etc...you get the idea.

It's a Wonderful Life is such a good movie, possibly my favorite Christmas movie. I always watch in black and white, though. I didn't know they had a colorized HD version. I know there are a lot of purists who will say it's so much better in the original black and white, but once you see the remastered version, it makes a huge difference on the comfort of your eyes. It's so much more restful. Maybe it's because I wear glasses, but black and white is always a bit fuzzy, and after 2 hours my eyes are wiped out.

Here's the very ending of the movie, a terrific bit that is sure to thaw even the coldest of Scrooge hearts:

A Video Post

Every time I post a video people (and by people, of course I mean Meury) say it's a lazy post. I will have you know that there is a good amount of thought put in to every post, video or otherwise.

The other night we had our first of many Christmas parties, our yearly Christmas Carol Night. It was so much fun. We had some snacks, tons of drinks, chocolate chip cookies, mocha bites and awesome eggnog. By the end of the night we were all flying pretty high and songs got a bit silly. It was all in good fun and we'll remember it as an excellent way to herald in the Holiday season.

Here is a video I'm sure you've all seen many times, it's nothing new, but it's always fun and it's totally Christmas.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

The League - Best New Show Ever!

The universe is hating on me in a big way. My kitchen floor exploded - literally. The tiles started lifting all on their own like there was a monster coming out to terrorize us just in time for the holidays. There are closets and doors that need to be looked at, but even though we call and schedule with handymen, no one shows up. It amazes me that these people can feed their families. Are they doing so well that they can pick and choose what jobs they want to show up to? I don't think so. They're just ridiculously lazy.

Every once in a while when you're tinkering on the edge of despair, when you think nothing can go right, when you think your luck has finally run out and this is indeed the end of the line for you, and when you stop believing in the balance of the universe; something wonderful happens. Quite suddenly, out of nowhere, for no appearant reason, not because you've earned it - although you have; not because you deserve it - even though you do; not because you're worth it - though you know you are; but just because it's time. Finally, finally, after years, months of crappy shows that don't get cancelled (you know I mean you, Ghost Whisperer), of great shows that get cancelled (Carpoolers, IT Crowd, anyone?), a great show creaps up on us and quietly says "Boo!".

I'm talking about the genious that is The League. Instead of relying on beautiful people to draw in viewers every week, they rely soley on intellingent, witty and fantastic writing - and a bit of improv as well, I've heard. I watched the pilot episode by myself and laughed so much I wept. The birthday song alone is enough to convince you that this is a show worth watching weekly. Thankfully the network has been wise enough to renew it for a second season, and I can only hope many more. Who would have thought that someone could make an incredibly entertaining show out of a fantasy footbal league? Not me. I now have a seriously interesting line up of laughs to look forward to every week thanks to Glee, The League, HIMYM, and Community.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

I'm not sure what happened, but I am scarred for life

A while ago my Majah had given me some baby octopus she thought I'd enjoy cooking. I love octopus, and baby octopus is even better. I've cooked with octopus before and it was not a traumatic or icky experience. The bag of octopus she gave me though was HUGE, and FROZEN. Cooking seafood fresh, and cooking seafood frozen is as different as driving a VW Bettle - not the cute new one, the one all the East Germans had and the Mexicans still use - and driving a BMW.

I took the octopus out the night before and put it in a bowl in the sink to defrost. The next morning I got up and the entire thing was still one solid block. The very outer layer had defrosted and when you touched it it had a jelly like consistency that gave me the heebee-jeebees. It very closely resembled the alien in the movie Independence Day, starring Will Smith and Jeff Goldblum - a fun and exciting film that's still good entertainment after all these years. The frozen blob of octopus was horrific. This was subtle indicator #1 that I should not proceed with the operation. But I was too stupid to heed it, I barrelled on like a crazy Don Quixote against a windmill, completely disregarding the possibly catastrophic repercussions of my actions, or the "Mene mene tekel upharsin" writing on the wall.

I placed it in a pot to boil and left the kitchen. After about 20 minutes a very strong, extremely intense fish smell came wafting from the kitchen to my room. I went running to see what was happening, but nothing could prepare me for what I saw. My entire stovetop was covered in stinky, fishy red liquid. When I looked in the pot there was dark red scum floating and boiling away and random tentacles appearing and disappearing out of the water. Like a horror film! I was nowhere near done. No. We may have been outnumbered 10 to 2, but we were alive and they weren't.

I must have taken 3 mini vomit breaks. I had to call Angie to come help me clean the little abominations. To think that they once were God's creatures, with their repugnant little suckers and revolting gelatinous texture. Go figure. The smell was so strong it permeated my skin, hair, the kitchen walls, the floor, everywhere!

After everything was said and done I created a dish that would have had me kicked out at Top Chef's judge's table. I couldn't eat it - or anything else for that matter - and survived on a diet of cold water and lemon until I could finally stomach some white cheese and tomato. The entire episode was a fiasco and I WILL NEVER DO IT AGAIN. I was under the misguided notion that I was stronger. Angie is stronger than me. She may say, "Ew, gross" at everything, but when it comes down to it she was just fine, while I was holding back vomit and chocking on bile.

Tata for now, and may your day be octopus free!

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Holiday Looks 2009

Let's analyze this season's Holiday looks starting with Estee Lauder. Gold eyes, a perfect red lip, flawless skin. What's not to love? It's not original, different, or necessarily creative, but it is traditional. I like a perfect traditional look for Christmas and from what I've seen and read, the collection is lovely and very wearable all year round.

Bobbi Brown. This is one of my faves. To me it's different, perhaps more of a New Year's look, it's beautiful and rrrrr. I think this is perfect for colder climates. For the Southern hemisphere I would recommend a warmer nude lippy, it would brighten everything up.

Guerlain. I really don't think there's anything special about this look at all. I know they have this awesome powder thingy for this collection that is super blogworthy, but aside from that it's pretty basic and doesn't stand out in any way. What I'm trying to say is that there's nothing here that screams holiday, at least not to me. That being said, the collection itself is très gorgeous and totally covet worthy. It doesn't say "holiday" to me, but I can appreciate that it's a lovely, lovely collection.

YSL. This feels dated to me. There's a basic rule in makeup about pairing a strong eye with a strong lippy. It doesn't apply to high fashion or statement shoots, but it does very much apply to walking around makeup. I wouldn't be caught dead with a smokey black/brown eye and red lips, but it seems YSL wants us to go for it.

Smashbox. Very lovely, sweet, flirty, and fun. I love this one, it may be my fave. I think it's appropriate and different.

Nars. I know the look here doesn't seem wearable, it's a high fashion look you would see on the runway, but it shows off the colors perfectly. That brown shadow is stunning and I've always loved the way brown smokey eyes look paired with pink lips. This is a very good option for someone who wants a more intense look, but also wants to keep it upbeat (as opposed to the Bobbi Brown look, which is more serious).

MAC. Here we see purple shadow again. This is a bit more "angelic" and I like it. It's paired with baby pink cheeks, highlighter and a pink nude lippy. Very now, very cool.

Lancome. So beautiful! Of course, it helps that Kate is doing her "English Rose" thing, but wow, it's stunning. The simplicity of the eyes stand out because the skin is perfectly flawless and luminous. The subtle glow to the dusty red lips adds a holiday sparkle that is understated, subtle and chic. Ok, this is my fave. The more I look at it, the more I love it. The key to this look would be to use a luminous foundation with medium coverage, good concealer, highlighter, subtle bronzer to contour and nothing more, then a perfectly applied lippy with lip liner. I recommend buying this exact color from Lancome as it's a keeper - you'll get lots of mileage out of it.

Christian Dior. Lavender eyes again only this time cold and uninviting. I'm not feeling this look at all. It's luminous, but it's not holiday love. No, I don't think so. If you're wearing silver for New Years, this is a good way to go, but in my opinion, the MAC look is better.

Chanel. Very different, creative and chic. Color makes a subtle statement and then lips are kept almost bare so as not to distract or clash with the eyes. This looks takes a bit more precision and care to execute because you don't want your color too bright, or not buffed enough. Less is more here.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Weekend Update: Tania Bulhoes

This is a beautiful, gorgeous shaving set. It's sterling silver, and the whole thing costs about $700. A present fit for a king.

Saturday my sister and I had to do last minute Christmas shopping (by last minute I mean 20+ days before Christmas). We had very few things on our list, literally like 3, but that was enough to send us over the edge. After wading through throngs of mindless goyim moving in zombie-like fashion to spend an entire month's salary buying presents their family and friends may or may not like, totally unaware of what the holiday is about and creating an atmosphere that was so far and removed from "Peace on earth good will towards men", a concept which I doubt they've ever heard, I asked myself "What would Baby Jesus do?" and then I got it: "Sit down for a delicious cappuccino and financier at Garcia & Rodrigues". So that's what we did.

After spending way more than we should have on water and coffee, we headed back to the hell hole that is the mall. We still had two things to do and we needed to be smart about them. Buying the perfect present for someone includes getting something that you can afford, so it's tricky business when all you see and all you love is the top of the line, most expensive things. We needed an extended break to renew our spirits. Cappuccino is not enough, not when you're looking at a sea of oxigen deprived drones moving in quase-dead fashion creating traffic jams and confusion.

This is a silicone based hand and body lotion that absorbs immediately into the skin leaving behind the softest, most angelic epidermis you could possibly imagine. I will dream of this until I go back and buy it. It's heavenly, but the price is not.

Then we saw it. The heaven's opened, the light shone down and a choir of angels announced the first sighting and splendor of Tania Bulhoes. For all of you who don't know what this is, and are guessing that it's a store, you are mistaken. It is so much more than just a store. It is an oasis for the weary, a place of peace and joy. It is a haven, a sanctuary - if you will. A place where the weary mall traveler can enter and be immediately envoloped in the tranquility of a water wall, the beauty of the comforting apothecary-like walls of luxurious, decadent, extravagant, and magnificent array of bath and body products.

Sterling silver trays and candle holders, Swarovski crystal embedded perfume bottles, and other accessories, decorate the tables at the center of the store. Old world velvet chairs and chaises line the walls, while tasteful flower arrangements in muted colors welcome the grateful client. Every possible pamper is offered and sold. I know there is a huge store/spa in São Paulo, but I've never been. While the store here in Rio is much smaller, it is still grandious and imposing, although I'm sure not as much as the "mother ship".

Click here to go to the Tania Bulhoes website to get an idea of what I'm talking about. I believe all images are of the SP store.

Friday, December 11, 2009

The 15 Hottest Guys in TV - according to me

I got totally carried away making my own slideshow, which is why I'm posting this today and not Monday. You can go on to BuddyTV and make one yourself - it's a blast. Anyway, here are my Top 15 (10 just wasn't enough):

Top 100 Sexiest Guys in TV - according to BuddyTV, that is - NOT according to me

Angie sent me this link today and it was really fun to look through. I disagree with this list completely!!!! - I even rearranged and made my own Top 50. The only problem is that some of the guys in the 100-50 should be in the Top 50, so it really didn't work well. There are just a few that needed to be at the very top of the list, and I was a bit disappointed they were not given due respect, but I'll remedy that in a later post when I make my Top 10 Sexiest Guys in Television. Let me know if you agree with the lists below, or who you think should be at the top.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

I'm looking forward to...

Here's hoping some fairy dust comes my way

I'm sitting in my room wearing PJ's, YSL fuschia lipstick, Diorella and of course the most awesome nail polish on earth, OPI Vodka and Caviar. Although I look outstanding I don't feel that way. In an effort to once again lift myself out of this funk I'm going to blog about all the things I'm looking forward to right now and perhaps it'll help me reclaim my joie de vivre.
  • The arrival of my BadGal mascara from Strawberrynet. Benefit isn't sold in South America so there are certain brands I have to get elsewhere - this is where international sites come in handy. Pixiwoo and others have bragged about BadGal and how awesome it is. The last mascara I bought was DiorShow Iconic Waterproof Mascara, and I don't want to complain too much, but let's just say aside from the fact that it's waterproof - which is not a good thing in my book - it just doesn't glam up my lashes. DiorShow does, Lancome Fatale, CoverGirl LashBlast, Fresh Firebird - they all make my lashes crazy gorgeous. DiorShow Iconic however gives them a natural look - ? Okay, I don't absolutely hate it, I just don't love it. So, that's why I went for Benefit BadGal, in the hopes that it can give my lash the drag queen effect they deserve. Thing about my lashes is, they're long, but they're thin. As soon as it arrives I'll review it here.
  • Christmas presents from my sister and my friend. They send me stuff every year and I always look forward to it. Beauty stuff from my dear sis (I already know it's going to be a nude Bobbi Brown lipstick!!!), and a book from my friend (trashy historic romance novels of the best kind).
  • Christmas Carol Night. Every year we get together and have cookies and eggnog and sing Christmas Carols. It's super fun and we all look forward to it. It's usually at James and Greti's place because James has the alcohol - I'm serious when I tell you that James has at least 100 bottles of the best licquor, wine, every type of whisky/bourbon you can imagine, limited numbered editions, artesanal cachaça, vodka bottles the size of my 13 yr old son, and so on and so forth. I bring the cookies, he makes the drinks, HRH brings the guitar and it's a party. Very exclusive, invitation only and in total about 10 people.
  • Season 6 Finale of Top Chef. I'm rooting for Kevin or Brian. I care not for Michael. In fact I think he thinks more of his food than it really is, and he's a douche. (Update: great, just great. Michael won). So what - it was a great season!
  • Wearing my summer perfumes. In particular I'm excited about the ones I just took out of "storage": Patou Joy, Diorella, Chance, Apres L'Ondee, Eau des Marveilles, Eternity Summer, etc...
  • Christmas/New Year break. That week in between Christmas and New Years is key for me. I don't really have that week off, but my work will be significantly reduced, the kids will be done with their finals, and I'll finally get a much needed, much deserved break from my hectic nightmare schedule. The only reason why I haven't been losing it more is because I know it's just around the corner.
Et vous?

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Solo Loewe: Majestically Mysterious - at least the ads are

I love this series of perfume ads. They seem old world majestic somehow, a bit evil - in a good way, and super mysterious (OMG, it reminds me of the Tudors and all the intrigue - wow, am I reading too much into this, or what?). They make me want to smell the perfume, and at this point it would be difficult to disappoint me because in my mind I already love it. If that makes me a crazy, then fine - I'm a crazy!

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Beauty: OPI Vodka and Caviar

The shape of her nails is very 40/50's and so is the half moon at the base, which honestly I find odd. She always wears the most beautiful red polish, wonder what it is...

I've been a bit lost lately. I've had a serious case of the fuckits and in part I think it's due to the fact that I'm taking it at work and I need a vacation. I put away all my winter perfumes and took out all my summer ones in the hopes that it would lift my spirit - it didn't. I watched the entire 6th season (with the exception of the finale which hasn't been aired yet) of Top Chef - nothing. Then as I was sitting in the livingroom watching a new episode of Grey's I decided to do my nails. I wasn't excited about it, but it had been a while so I went to it. I chose to paint them red, and the red I chose is the most perfect red in the universe - OPI Vodka and Caviar.

Never in the history of beautiful reds has there ever been a red like this one. It's a true red that is flattering on everyone and ideal for any occasion. The second I swiped that first bit of color on my nail my spirits were lifted. When I was done I looked at my handiwork and marveled. Why in frick didn't I do this sooner. I can't stop looking down at my hands. I'm myself again! It's such a relief. The only bummer in all this is that the bottle is almost done and it's not as easy as I would like for me to get my hands on a new one.

I love many OPI reds like: Keys to My Karma, Got the Blues for Red, Big Apple Red, and St. Petersburgundy. But there is nothing, nothing like Vodka and Caviar. If you're in a bit of a funk, or you look down at your washer-woman hands and think, "Yuck!", you need a self-esteem boost, or you want to glam up your nails before scratching someone's eyes out - or giving someone the finger for that matter (have you ever noticed how much classier it looks with red nails?), I suggest you run down to your local Ulta or Walgreens (for all you lucky ladies who have one nearby), and get yourself some. You'll be surprised at what a good red nail polish can do. To look at some sweet swatches of the color go to Michelle's blog, All Lacquered Up, where you can find pictures of any nail color you can imagine. It's a really great site.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Dave Barry's Christmas Gift Guide '09

My favorite Christmas list is out! - Dave Barry's yearly Gift Guide. Check it out for a whole lot of laughs! This is a fantastic waste of time and I like to spend a good while reading each one. I still think Dave Barry is one of the funniest people out there. I get his humor every time. He's my go-to writer when I'm feeling like poo and need to rally. Enjoy!

Friday, December 4, 2009

Christmas Menu Plans

After yesterday's post - for which I will most likely get the stink eye from many of you - I decided to post about food. For Thanksgiving James made a dinosaur turkey. It was the turkey that ate all the other turkeys at the farm. If you think I'm joking, try to picture a 30lbs turkey. You can't. Your mind stops at 20lbs. It cooked all day long - literally - and came out perfect. It was juicy and amazing. As a back up, just in case it didn't come out succulent, I made a 12lbs turkey. As you've probably guessed by now, there was a whole lot of turkey leftover.

We were like Bubba but with turkey, we made: turkey sandwiches, turkey rice, turkey pasta, turkey beans, you name it, we made it. At one point when I asked my son what he wanted for lunch he said, "Anything but turkey!" - he put into words what we were all thinking. Needless to say I will not be making turkey for Christmas. I'm going crazy and breaking tradition.

This year we're splitting up into two because most of my siblings will be with their respective others vising in-laws on the 24th (the big dinner day in Brazil), so we'll be celebrating together on the 25th. I'm going to make a gigantic honey ginger glazed ham, green apple and bacon relish, potato salad (Mary makes a really good one), farofa (no Christmas here makes it without farofa), and salpicão (a chicken and carrot salad with a mayo based dressing and crispy matchstick potatoes on top - very popular this time of year), or should I make a chicken waldorf? Don't know yet, but something like that. For dessert, our favorite walnut Christmas cake taken from a very old traditional Portuguese recipe book from the 20's. I cover mine in chocolate ganache and it takes it to a whole new level of yummy.

On the 24th we'll have HRH's parents over and since that will be a much smaller affair, I'm thinking of going gourmet and making poussin. They're small individual chickens. I can stuff and bake them, and serve them with either rice, couscous or pototoes. Thing 1 and Thing 2 will love it! I'll make a nice supreme sauce (chicken velouté with mushrooms and cream) on top. I still don't know what to make for dessert, but I'm thinking of perhaps making a cheesecake.

Do you think I'm crazy for already preparing Christmas menus? I want to know in advance what I'm going to do and plan accordingly. Plus, after this post it might all change.

Tata for now!

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Movie Review: A Streetcar Named Desire

Yesterday I started watching the 3rd season of "50 movies to watch before you die" on TCM. The season has started out superbly with "A Streetcar Named Desire". This is the movie that gave Brando a name - and what a name. He is amazing. When he's on screen, it's all you see. He plays a gruff, common and quase-violent man who married a lovely girl who was raised in the South in a plantation. She's educated, beautiful - the works. She is very much in love with him and they're doing fine although they don't live a glamorous life or even a half glamorous one. She's preggers and even though he has a terrible temper, in my opinion, his love for her, and hers for him, is the most important thing.

In walks Blanche played by Vivien Leigh using the same accent she acquired in "Gone with the Wind", who during the entire movie tries to tear them apart. She plays a disturbed and ridiculous woman who because of something that happened in her past has spiralled and eventually gone full on nuts - or more like Loco Chic, because God forbid she should look silly. Vivien Leigh moves like an ex-ballerina, kind of theatrical-like, and I'm not sure yet if I really love it, I'm totally on the fence on this one. Most of the time you don't know if you should pitty her or slap her, she's so ridiculous, hypocritial and judgemental - I just wanted to slap her and shut her the frick up! I know this may sound terrible, and contradictory as well, since I really liked the movie, but, I found her performance at times unbelievable and overly theatrical, like she was concerned about looking and being pretty. There's one specific moment that comes to mind where she's telling the story of what happened to her and it just seemed scripted, like she was acting, and trying desperately to charm. A truly good performance should make you forget it's a performance. I know she is a theatrical actress, and her character was as well, so maybe she was going for theatrically annoying...I don't know, if she was, she nailed it and I take everything back I just said. She's still really annoying.

I think this is definitely one for the books as the story/screenplay is very well written and beautifully performed. It's an intense character drama so I recommend watching it preferably with someone so that different things in it can be discussed - at least I like to do that with some movies - but whatever happens, this is a movie that must be seen, so if you haven't yet, now's a good time.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Christmas Tree, Oh Christmas Tree!

Last Sunday Mary and I got together to set up the tree. I had gotten a couple new flowers and some pretty mutted fuschia ribbon, but I wasn't sure exactly what would happen. For the most part I have a basic idea of what I want - or don't want - and I take it from there. I bought 3 large purple/brown sparkly flowers (poinsetta like) and 3 copper beauties. And that was it. I planned to use some of Greti's pink and burgundy flowers we bought together last year and I figured I could easily make do with the stuff I have store from previous Christmases.

We cranked up our Christmas CD and with Mariah Carey wailing in the background we had the inspiration we needed to create our masterpiece - the most beautiful tree yet. I had some brown and orange birds, some dried wheat shoots, pine cones and bobbles. The only ribbon on my tree are the ones that come down on the sides (4) and the big bow at the top with the butterfly.

In the end I think you will all agree that I have outdone myself. With a couple new items I was able to create and entirely new tree. It has many colors, but all of them have a common thread that brings them all together creating an sophisticated theme with elegantly subtle colors. Très fantastique!

When we were done we went to Greti's and helped her set up her tree, made blueberry muffins, drank watermelon caipivodka's (so refreshing and crazy delicious! - recipe coming soon), and watched Australia.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Deep Thoughts: A really bad idea

Yesterday I went to a meeting all the way on the other side of town. It was a pretty official meeting with partners from the company I work for, some other business men, a rep from an international consulting firm and little ol' me. The topic: million dollar investments. I was interpreting back and forth for hours. At one point I actually felt my brain start to heat up. Like those old cars that used to run out of water and the carborator (I think) would overheat and smoke up on the side of the road. My brain felt like that. Anyway, that's not what I really wanted to tell you. The hotel we went to was in a touristic/quaint part of town with a spectacular view of the whole city of Rio. The room we were meeting in however, was not - spectacular, that is. The AC refused to do its thing, and the chairs were almost comfortable, but not quite. This is the interesting bit: the bathroom didn't have a door. You read it right. No door. It wasn't under repair or anything like that, there is no door on any of the bathrooms in any of the bedrooms. It's just not the way they roll. There is a thin threaded curtain that does not offer any privacy at all, all it does is add a bit of color.

Someone at the meeting said it was very bohemian. I guess you can say that, if bohemians like to watch each other use the toilet. To say the least, not the ideal place for a meeting, or a honeymoon for that matter. There is nothing in the civilized world that could ever compell me to stay there. Can you imagine the poor suckers who travel all the way here from countries with bathroom doors and have no idea what's going on before they land in this "bohemian paradise"? This is something that would need to be disclosed way in advance, maybe in bold red letters on their brochure or website.

I can just imagine what the hotel design planning meeting was like: a bunch of old hippies passing around the "peace pipe", sitting cross legged on the floor, clothing optional, lots of beards, braids and super long untrimmed hair, incense burning in the corner for good measure, macrobiotic food buffet - mostly raw foods, no silverware - feel the food in your hands, patchouli oil permeating the air mixing with the "peace pipe", a "love guru" in the corner plucking away on his sitar, eyes closed in meditation....and then someone comes up with a brilliant idea for the hotel design. "Let's paint the fountain and the pool in blood red, remove the doors from the bathrooms and just put some braided colored thread in its place, and let's skimp on AC maintence. Let nature control room temperature, not artificial machines". Then another lost soul pulls away from his wheat grass and tofu smoothie just long enough to add, "Great idea! Why put a bathroom door, when you could put this beautiful braided thread?"

This is how really bad ideas are born.

Friday, November 20, 2009

My New Favorite Show - Community

I heart Joel McHale! He's in my new favorite show. I could go on and on about it, but why don't you have a looksy and decide for yourself.

Deep Thoughts: Obvious Questions

As you can see, picture is from Socialite Life, and that's the hot neighbor I'm talking about.

The other day I was watching a show - don't remember which - and the girl said something really obvious like, "You're going golfing?", because she saw him put his golf clubs in the trunk of his car. He turned to her and said, "You're holding your purse. Are we playing a game where we point out obvious things about eachother?". I always wanted to have the courage to say that, but I always thought it was too mean. Hearing the guy say it, it didn't sound mean, it sounded right. It really, really bugs me when people ask obvious questions. Drives me crazy. For example:

I'm in the kitchen with a knife in my hand cutting meat and someone will walk in and say, "Are you making meat for lunch?"

I've got my "going out" clothes on, heels, purse, sunglasses and a full face of make-up and someone will ask, "Are you going out?"

I don't have to keep going, but you get the picture. I know that in most cases people are just being friendly - in their own annoying way - but it's really frustrating. I have to literally bite my tongue to keep from saying something sarcastic like, "No, I'm not making meat, I'm making shrimp, it just looks like meat because your eyes are stupid", or something like that. I have to confess that I'm not always as nice as I should be and sometimes I just can't help it and I say stuff anyway, but really is it any worse than the fool who's asking me super obvious things that don't need an answer at all? For the most part, I'm not talking about people I barely know and are just trying to make small talk. I'm talking about people I know well, people who should know better.

Anyway, I just wanted to say that because watching that guy on TV say those things with such freedom and zero fear of being mean was really liberating. I just remembered where I saw this, on Cougar Town with Courtney Cox and that guy who's hot but we don't know his name.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Christmas, Heathens, Leprechauns, Kool-Aid and more

Today I went to the mall after not having traversed through that little corner of hell in a while. During the week it's much less of a den of evil than on the weekends when all the troll creatures and mall goons make an appearance - along with their entire extended family. The mall has become a place where I dread to go. On the one hand it's really practical because you can do all your shopping in relative comfort due to the wide variety of shops and prices, AC, and security.

During or leading up to the holidays, the mall also becomes a place of sparkly lights, fairy dust, Christmas shopping, promotions and limited editions. Every year I count on the decorations being magical and creative - but more than anything, I'm looking for magical. There was one year when it was so magical I actually took pictures by the big tree at the display area. There was another year when I couldn't help but be blown away by the cuteness and baby magicalness of the decorations around and about the mall - there were stuffies and lovelies everywhere!

About 3 years ago it all started going downhill and eventually just went to the Devil. It all began with the alien poo decor fiasco of '06. Instead of sparkly magic they gave us bobbles in piles that resembled strategically placed poo in an assortment of colors - ranging from alien green to ET purple. To say that there was no magic was a kind understatement. It was weird, bizarre and freaky. It was creative in a way only Stargate Atlantis and Star Trek have been, and disturbing in the way Mars Attacks made us laugh and question at the same time. Where was my magic?

I started thinking about the people who were paid an alien load of colorful, sparkly bills to come up with the concept, outline what they wanted, travel and buy tons and tons of "decorations", only to produce a "masterpiece" not worthy of competing against a 1st grader's macaroni arts and crafts Christmas tree.

This year I believe someone was desperate. Desperate to get it over with and run home, that is. The theme is leprechauns, lucky charms and horse shoes. Really. I'm not joking. I can feel right now that you're thinking you must have read it incorrectly, so I'm going to say it again: leprechauns, lucky charms and horse shoes. Right. Of course. I forgot. Leprechauns were the baby Jesus' sitters, lucky charms are what the little tike's mobile was made of, and horse shoes were the infant Jesus' first toys. Wait, maybe that was Santa. Well, it had to have been someone's because how else would that have passed as a Christmas theme?

Way to make everyone, even little children and babies, completely forget what Christmas is about. Why focus on love, family, magic, caring, and the Savior's birth, when you can focus on weird little men with unruly eyebrows and beards, wearing green outfits that make Robin Hood and his Merry Men look as straight as Russell Crowe throwing a phone. I guess it's up to us individuals to make our homes as lovely and magical as possible and channel out the crazy leprechaun madness of this year's heathen Kool-Aid they're trying to make us all drink.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Perfect Nails and Cuticles

My nails had been giving me some grief and I've been less than enthusiastic about taking care of them. I know that sounds bad, but it's all such hard work and then it all goes down the drain (literally) every time I have to cook. I use gloves a lot to wash dishes and for chores, but for some reason my nails - especially my cuticles - were just not representing. I needed something easy, something simple, but something more intensive than my L'Occitane hand cream to keep my cuticles looking good regardless of what I put my hands through on a daily basis.

This is when I discovered Granado nail and cuticle wax. This stuff works really, really well. About 3 times a day I take a bit and put it on my nails, concentrating a bit more on my nail beds, and just like magic, they're beautiful. The wax instantly perks them up and makes them look good, absorbs quickly and doesn't leave any greasy yuck behind. Fantastic. I've been using it for 5 days now, about 3 times a day, and I can honestly say that I love it. I don't know what took me so long to find this stuff. I know most people use cuticle oil, but because I work with my computer a lot and have to type all day long, oil on my hands is just a bad idea. Making nourishing wax was a genius idea and I hope all you Brazilian readers will give this a try. I'm not sure this brand is sold anywhere outside of Brazil, but it would be work looking into. This product has been automatically added to the staples in my collection - you know, those ones you cannot do without like: L'Occitane Shea Butter hand cream, Tweezerman tweezers, Blistex lip ointment, Sebastian Potion 9, Shiseido Sun Protection Powder Foundation and Johnson's Lavender baby powder. It's part of the Pink line by Granado and costs about R$12 (US$6). It comes in a tiny pot with 7gr but a little goes a long way. I expect the little pot I have will last about a year, give or take.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Perfume: Scented Body Powders

I love scented body powders. They feel old fashioned and classy, old movie style glamour. This new dusting powder popped up and I think it might be the only version of Angel that could work for me. I had a bad experience with TM Angel when I was teaching English at Berlitz. There was this one student who would bathe in it right before class where I was locked in a classroom for 90 min. inhaling the toxic fumes. Needless to say it made me nauseous and from then on I was unable to see the name Thierry Mugler Angel without mini vomiting. All the teachers would draw straws to see who would teach her because no one could stand it and no one had the guts to tell her to ease up because she was basically Brazilian royalty - I'm serious. I'm sure everyone has an elevator story that includes being gassed out by Angel, but being stuck in a poisonous classroom for nearly 2 hours inhaling hazardous material is about as bad as it can get.

A good friend of mine uses the perfume - and I think she would love the powder - with a very light hand. She wears just enough so you can tell she has it on, but it stays really close to her skin. The only way it can be tollerated. Anyway, I'm interested in trying this powder and I think James (my friend Greti's fiance) should totally buy this for her. She would just die.

Here are some powders I covet:

Prada L'Eau Ambree. This probably smells like something I would want to wear all the time. Like the YSL Opium powder. I could dive in a vat of it and just sit there letting it permeate into my skin.

Quelques Fleurs by Houbigant. It's so cute, I can barely stand it.

YSL Opium - love it so much. One of my mother's friends used to own this. Divine.

Guerlain Shalimar - I can't use the perfume, but I think I would love the powder. I hope I love it. I really want to love the perfume, it just doesn't love me. At all. It makes me sad to think about it.

Miss Dior - I love Miss Dior perfume, so think this powder will be a winner. Plus, its' super, super cute.

This packaging is to die for! It's Juicy Couture. Don't know what it smells like, but I want it in a big way.

This is also Juicy Couture. Give me, give me.

Oscar de la Renta. Lovely. it probably smells like heaven and weddings. This would make a beautiful gift. It's just so pretty.

Makeup: Blake Lively

Photo is from Celebrity Paradise.

I got this picture from Blogdorf Goodman - a blog I love, love. In the post the celeb makeup artists talks about what products they used to create this beautiful, beautiful look which I think is perfection. Please hop over there and read the post. You'll see that the makeup artist used Chanel Rouge Allure in Mythic and called it a perfect nude. Do you remember that I myself called it the perfect nude -- yes dear ones, you heard it here first. Anyway, click on the picture to see it in really high res.

Chanel Rouge Allure in Mythic. Photo from Marie Claire.

This is what I'll be doing over the weekend. I'll have plenty of places to wear it at as I have activities and outings scheduled for Friday, Saturday and Sunday. I've got a super full agenda and I'll need to look gorgeous everywhere I go. Friday I'm going to a show, Saturday I'm meeting with friends for coffee and fun, Sunday I'm going to the theater. I'm going to wear pretty much this makeup look to all of them, but I'm going to wear different perfume. I'm thinking SL Fumerie Turque for the show (it'll stand out and it smells smokey so it goes well with clubs), Balmain Jolie Madam for Saturday afternoon (violets, gardenia and leather - nice...although, if it's too hot I think I'll go with Chanel Cristalle), and Chanel 5 for the theater.

Hugs, Kisses and Chanel Wishes!

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Weekend Update: Saquarema

There's a cute little church on the top of the hill where you can see the whole city. The view is breathtaking and the church is beautiful.

This past weekend (wow, it's taken me long enough to write about it...) HRH, Thing 1, Thing 2, Meury, her boyfriend Gui and I went to a nearby beach paradise called Saquarema for a bit of RNR. It was so hot this last weekend there were moments when I didn't think my skin would stay on. I was literally melting. So gross. The nice thing about this place is that while the sun beat down on us with all its fury, there was a constant breeze to refresh and cool. The water was cristal clear and fresh. The beach we went to was not crowded so we were all just the right amount of distance from others. (Okay, I'm lying just a tiny bit. There was this douche named Aloisio who was a little too close, even though he was technically pretty far away. He was such a douche in fact that from now on instead of calling people jerks, we'll just call them Aloisio. He didn't stay long, so thank God for small mercies. Not even Aloisio could dampen our moods, we channeled him out and had a blast anyway.)

HRH's beer tower.

The heat was intense, but it was nothing 50 cans of beer couldn't fix, so we brought our cooler and drank like we were trying to prove something. About 3 hours in we got hungry and ordered some freshly caught pargo (red porgy) from the kiosk about 50 ft from where we were. What I'm going to tell you know is the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth - so help me God. It was the best fish I've ever eaten in my whole entire life! It was cut in half (half had the head still attached and other other part had the tail), dipped in batter and deep fried. It was crispy, crunchy with just the right amount of seasoning, on the outside. The flesh inside was tender, moist, and oh so very delicious. The tender bits of fish just melted in your mouth. The flavor was mild (like milk) and the smell was like the sea - fresh, crazy fresh and wonderful. We ordered french fries to go with it, but really, who cares. I'm telling you now for the record that we will be going back, if for nothing else, for that fish manna from Heaven. I'm sorry I have no pictures to put here - my camera's batteries pooped out, but I promise to go overboard with pics the next time around.

Thing 2 and Thing 1 - they loved it.

The kids swam and went hunting for little tiny crabs. HRH rested and had a much needed and overdue break from work, and I relaxed and worried about nothing but keeping everyone coated in sunblock for two full days. On Saturday evening we made fresh shrimp and penne with a fresh tomato sauce and drank chilled chardonnay. That's the life! I need to do exactly that for like 3 weeks straight. I'm already making plans.