Gift Guide: Pet Project

By |December 14th, 2013|Gift Guide|

smitty in the cityIt’s no secret that a grandparent’s main duty is to spoil his/her grandchild.  Well, it would seem that my father has taken this task a tad too seriously by overindulging his namesake and my dog, Smitty.  My furry friend and I flew out to California a few weeks ago to celebrate Thanksgiving with my darling dad and middle bigger brother, Andy.  I was not surprised when Smitty got more than his fair share of our turkey fueled feast.  We all love Dick Smith, but being the softy who always gives in to Smitty’s sad begging eyes certainly doesn’t hurt his standing in the race to becoming the dog’s favorite family member (other than me, of course).  I’m now immune to his cuteness, but Dick is still a sucker.  A few days after Thanksgiving, ol’ Smitty wasn’t feeling so swell and on the following Tuesday night/Wednesday morning, I awoke in sheer panic when my baby was sick as a dog- literally.  Many people find my easygoing personality a bit annoying as I don’t have the strongest sense of urgency- but this is exactly when that character feature/flaw comes into play.  As I roused my dad from his serene slumber, I started to cry and dear dad had no idea what to do with me.  He doesn’t have a pet and therefore nor does he have a vet.  It was also 5am and as we know, most vets are not open until the decent hour of 8 o’clock.  Calm Kiki took a breath, pressed her passcode into her iPhone as her fingers were too shaky for her fingerprint and proceeded to find the closest animal emergency room.

We arrived at Monterey Peninsula Veterinary Emergency & Specialty Center 20 minutes later and Smitty was diagnosed with acute pancreatitis.  He was held overnight with an IV and we retrieved him the next afternoon.  After being home for a short time, I knew there was something else wrong with him.  My normally perky pup was merely a shell of himself and other than myself, there’s no one I know better.  We took him back to the vet and they gave him more medicine and some under the skin hydration and sent us on our way.  Again, we were only home for a little while before I knew this was not just a case of an inflamed pancreas.  I’m no vet (I don’t like blood), but my diagnosis was there’s something else happening.  We got back in the car and I held my best friend in my lap, praying that he could hang in there, but thinking about how I would deal with losing the equivalent to my left arm.  Another doctor was on duty when we arrived and he immediately knew there had to be some sort of blockage.  Smitty was given barium and they X-rayed his teeny tummy every two hours for the next six hours and sure enough, it was clear that Smitty had indulged in something other than Thanksgiving stuffing.  We were given the scary decision of whether or not to operate on my poor pooch and after deep deliberation we gave the go-ahead for him to go under the knife.

I didn’t sleep until the doctor called to tell me, my little man was doing okay and in recovery and almost three weeks after leaving New York, Smitty is healing nicely.  Needless to say, Smitty has accounted for his share (and then some) of our holiday budget, so he’s just gonna have to settle for an extra long walk and maybe a belly rub as his Christmas gift.  My mom has deemed him, “The Dog Who Ate Christmas” and I’d say that’s fairly accurate.  In his defense, you really can’t put a price on life- unless you’re a hitman.  However, if your pooch or pet has been better behaved than Sir Smitty Smith, show him how much he/she means to you with a little something more than Pupperoni or catnip.

gifts for pets

1. Mariposa Dog House Frame, 2. Creature Comforts WOOF Dish, 3. Ware of the Dog Plaid Back Zip Dog Coat, 4. Ralph Lauren Crocodile Dog Carrier, 5. Barney’s New York Crystal Bow Collar, 6. Found My Animal Collapsible Water Bowl, 7. Pet House Trixie, 8.Graphic Image Leather Pet Lover’s Brag Book, 9. New Age Pets Indoor/Outdoor Raised Pet Bed, 10.Bottega Veneta Intreccio Scolpito Dog Leash

Sit.  Stay.  Good boy.



Somethin’ For the Fellas: No Junk in This Trunk

By |April 12th, 2012|Somethin for the fellas|

clark kent supermanOh men.  They are so wonderful in so many ways, but sometimes “sense of style” isn’t one of those many wondrous reasons we love them.  Whether they are breaking one of the cardinal man fashion commandments, wearing chinos in the champagne room, or sporting jeans that would make Liberace cringe,  they need us.  Should they choose to admit that or not isn’t relevant.  They need us.  Period.

While some of us consider shopping to be therapy (or even cardio), you’ve gotta know how much guys hate shopping.  They will park as close to the store they want to go to.  Get in.  Get out.  No browsing.  No fuss.  No muss.  To men, shopping is warfare, not fun.  So, how exactly are you going to get your man looking fresh to death?  Well, you could shop for him… but that can seem a bit pushy or “mom” like at times and besides, that’s valuable time you could be spending perusing the shoes at Barney’s instead.  Maybe he thinks he has really great taste (HA!) or maybe he’s just extremely busy. Whatever the case may be, it’s time for a fashion intervention.

Wouldn’t it be great if clothes and goodies could just magically show up at his door?  Like the Tooth Fairy or fashion?  We, ladies are lucky enough to have Birchbox (which, FYI, will be launching a men’s version shortly), but what do men get?

Enter Trunk Club.  What is Trunk Club you ask?  Well, it is A) genius, B) a service that provides the gents with a box of goodies that they can try on in the privacy of their own homes, keep what they like and send back what they don’t.  How easy is that?  After filling out a bit about himself (sizes, preferences), an “expert” will put together some great options that can be be packed as separates or even as entire outfits.  As time goes on, and the stylists learn his preferences, the trunks will become more and more tailored to his taste.  Trunks are sent whenever he’d like and not a moment sooner, which may require you to decide that for him.

Trunk Club for MenIt’s even something fun the two of you can do together.  Dress him up… and then undress him.  Have your very own private little fashion show.  This should prove to him that shopping can, in fact, be quite fun.



Images via Shaun Wong and Trunk Club

Weekend Playlist: Rapped in Luxury

By |September 24th, 2011|Weekend Playlist|

For as long as I can remember, rap music and fashion have gone hand in hand.  Now, some of you may just be thinking about the obvious mentions of “Air Force Ones” or “Apple Bottom Jeans” but these sneaky little lyrical poets have expensive (and high end) taste.  Some of the nods to top designers may fall on the average listener’s deaf ears– but they aren’t lost on me!  How else do you think they get white girls to dance and squeal?  Mention Prada!!

  1. T-Pain – Rap Song, “…Balenciaga bags cost a couple bucks (hot) is all shawty ever been, Blow a couple racks in Barney’s on that Phillip Lim.”
  2. Kanye West – Throw Some D’s, “Walking down Melrose spot where they sell clothes.  That chick know she’s bad. Can tell by the Chloe bag.  She ain’t no hoodrat.  She ain’t gotta prove that.  I peeped the McCartney’s.  Stella got her groove back.”
  3. LL Cool J – Loungin’, “I heard about your man he like to lace you wit cream.  Dolce Gabbana, Moschino, wit Donna jeans…”
  4. Fabolous – You Be Killin’ Em, “Louboutin shoes, she got too much pride.  Her feet are killin’ her.  I call it shoe-icide.”
  5. Notorious B.I.G. – Hypnotize, “I put hoes in NY onto DKNY.  Miami, DC prefer Versace.  All Philly hoes dough and Moschino.  Every cutie wit a booty bought a Coogi.”
  6. Drake – Fancy, “Say, go Cinderella. Go Cinderella.  Orgasm blush, lipstick, and concealer.” 
  7. Lil Kim – No Time, “Yeah, I mama, Miss Ivana.  Usually rock the Prada, sometimes Gabbana.” 
  8. Kanye West ft. Nicki Minaj – Monster, “monster Giuseppe heel, that’s the monster shoe.”
  9. Jay-Z – Empire State of Mind, “Caught up in the in crowd.  Now you’re in style.  Anna Wintour gets cold.  In Vogue with your skin out.”
  10. Clipse – When the Last Time, “When they say, “Last call” that don’t mean the night’s ova.  That means it’s time for her to show ya how quick she can hop out those Gucci loafers…” 
Who knew rappers have been reading up on their designers?

Guest Post: Why Did You Forget About Me? Your Favorite Drugstore Beauty Buys

By |May 19th, 2011|Beauty Buzz, Guest Blogger|

We beauty folks tend to get caught up in our $350 Chanel Sublimage, our Claudio Riaz makeup brushes, and our Clé de Peau Beauté this-n-that often forgetting the simple products that made us tumble head-over-heels into the world of beauty in the first place.  I’m talking about the cheap thrill of drugstore beauty basics that actually do what they say do. Remember being 12 and in awe over what rouge did to your face? Was it $160 Serge Lutens Blusher, you big fusspot? No, it was Almay!

We love our fancy, weighty, grown-up Barneys beauty department -and that’s OK- but we musn’t forget that “inexpensive” doesn’t mean bad if it works. Beauty is about the glitz and the packaging and frills, but more importantly about function.

If you read my last Whydid guest blog entry, you know I heart my mascara workhorse. Herein, I share a few of my other favorite bargain beauty basics. (Yes, you can look fantastic and still have a retirement fund).

Breaking up with your favorite shampoo is hard to do, but the “other gal,” Neutrogena’s, romantic promise is so lovely in her simplicity: dump your regular shampoo once in a blue moon for a lathery date with Neutrogena’s Anti-Residue Formula Shampoo, and your regular shampoo will work harder for you when you get back together. The Anti-Residue Formula works by removing the build-up that gunks up your fro, allowing your regular shampoo to do it’s job better. Give your scalp a scruberoo… and the best part is you’ll only be out $6.

I know someone close to Essie Nailpolish founder Essie Weingarten, and hear she’s a totally badass babe who personally bestows the names upon every single nailpolish color from Blanc (one of her first formulas) to After Sex (changed to After Six in conservative markets). She had a cow upon hearing that Kate wore Essie’s Allure nailcolor shade whilst becoming the Dutchess.

As any cosmopolitan chameleon knows, a quick change of polish color can alter your personality, and sometimes your life.  You don’t need to pony up for Uslu Airlines or Scotch Naturals. Get the effect for $8 – less than the cost of a single manicure! The number of home manicures you can get from an $8 shade is virtually endless – have you EVER finished a nail polish bottle? Nobody has. Google couldn’t even tell me how many uses are in a bottle.

Essie makes shades sold at J. Crew, and its childrens’ outpost, Crewcuts. From left: Splash of Grenadine, and Forget Me Nots. Can you say sizz-ummer? Or, head to Essie.com for my other two favorites, Merino Cool, seen her on Lady Gaga, and for you Ballet Slippers-obsessed, try Fed Up for a smidge-more-beigey, ever-so-slightly less sophomoric version.

You’re gloss-obsessed, I know.  We all are.  Lately there’s something so fresh and posh and European about the surprising and rare burst of actual opaque lipcolor. Lipcolor with eyeliner and everything else downplayed is just so French (mais oui!). American beauty tells us to tan, color our hair, get a mani/pedi, shape our brows, get a Latisse prescription, use the whole makeup drawer, then follow it up with injectables and hairspray. French beauty is about lips and eyeliner and looking like yourself (novel idea). Enter Revlon Super Lustrous Lipstick in Fire and Ice, for when you’re feeling a little bit Carla Bruni Sarkozy – on a budget.

Apparently Carla hates makeup, but when she wears it, goes the simple route with lip and liner, as you see in the above. Revlon Super Lustrous is a drugstore basic – that actually feels retro in it’s lipsticky-ness. It’s creamy and moisturizing and leaves a gorgeous kiss-mark on your coffee mug. Fire and Ice is in the true red family with a slight warmness to it.  It just screams “confident woman.” The voluptuous new throwback packaging makes it look just as fantastic on your lips as it does on your vanity.

***Sidebar – is every Revlon lip product named after fire, ice or stone fruits? See: Cherries In The Snow, Hot Coral, Smoked Peach, Iced Coffee, Raspberry Freeze, Cherry Ice, Snowsilver Rose, Smoky Rose, Icy Nude, and Flame, amongst many others. ) Have them all for $7.99 a piece.

Remember the geezer who loved Windex in My Big Fat Greek Wedding? Windex is to him what Aquaphor is to me. I use it on my lips, my knees, my eye wrinkles, burns, blemishes, and scars and my baby’s butt. Fast forward to my mom being shot for Real Simple Magazine.  Editors shot her in a great DVF dress (she bought it later) holding a rich maroon bag, standing before a cerulean doorway.

The shot is great – mostly because she is gorgeous (brush the dirt off my shoulder), and partly because they SLATHERED her exposed skin with Aquaphor. My mom looks like a darn spring chicken with that smooth skin. An enormous Aquaphor tub can be yours for $14. (So long, Sublimage!)

I leave you with the humble bobby pin. To experiment with updos, pick a picture in any magazine and just play with bobby pins till you get it right. Or smooth your quotidian ponytail, create a hot little faux-hawk, or just do something different. With the bobby pin, it’s all possible. At $3.50 for 50, you could give half your bobby pins away, and still have some sweet moolah left over for your beloved Serge Lutens.

Until next time… Don’t forget me!