Tuesday, February 24, 2015

And The Oscar Goes To....

Well... it's over. Sunday marked the close of my favorite time of year. I'm not talking about the Holidays or the winter time season; no, I am referring to.... awards season. That's right, the 87th Annual Academy Awards brought to a close the rat race that is Hollywood's biggest time of year. No more glitz, no more glam, no more red carpet shenanigans. Now all we can do is wait. Wait until next year to see who the front runners are. To see who SHOULD win, and who WILL win. The upsets, the surprises...

But for now we can just bask in the memory of what has come to pass. And in case you missed it, (or got bored of the 3 hour telecast) here are some highlights to get you through until the next go around. Enjoy. 

JK Simmons win for Whiplash.

I have yet to see this film, but the trailer makes it look fantastic (and he looks terrifying). JK was the favorite to win and his speech was so touching. Not your typical, "I'd like to thank the Academy." speech. (Which he did) Instead he reminds us all to "Call your parents. Tell them you love them." Awww.

Neil Patrick Harris is no Ellen, but he still brought it. 

Oh yeah, he brought it. Case in point, the huge opening number which featured my girl Anna Kendrick. (eeeekkk!) From a Birdman one shot underwear bit, to (intentionally?) mispronouncing presenters names, NPH still brought the laughs. Despite what the declining ratings may say, he was no where near a disappointment.

(Via OSCARS87)

Go home Uncle John, you're drunk.

John Travolta was being all sorts of creepy on Sunday. It all started with his encounter with ScarJo on the red carpet, (she is clearly NOT amused...) and then it got real awkward with the face touching of Adele Dazeem (Idina Menzel) when they presented together. It was clear he was not in his element. 

(Image via dailymail.co.uk)

(Via Jake kewl)

Everything IS awesome.

It may not have won any awards, but "Everything is Awesome" from the Lego Movie sure put on a fantastic show. Nominated for Best Original Song, sister duo Tegan and Sara brought the house down with such cast of characters as break-dancing construction workers, a possum, confetti, and Batman. The entertaining musical set even gave out Lego Oscars to the crowd. (P.S. How can I get my hands on one??) Needless to say, they made it awesome. 

Eddie Redmayne wins for Best Actor.

To be honest, Eddie's portrayal of Stephen Hawking in the Theory of Everything was amazing. His Oscar win was completely deserved (Sorry, Michael Keaton), even Kanye can't argue with Eddie's heartbreaking, and heartfelt performance. 

Stay weird Graham Moore. Stay weird. 

The most moving speech of the night came from Graham Moore. Who is Graham Moore you ask? I didn't know until Sunday either... I had no idea the speech for Best Adapted Screenplay could be so poignant. His message was strong, his delivery was powerful, and it even garnered a standing ovation from the crowd. My hat is off to you, sir. 

(Via Newsworld)

Lady Gaga made me want to climb ALL the mountains.

When I heard Mother Monster was going to be performing at the Academy Awards, I was skeptical. (She's not going to come on stage in a meat dress is she...?) When she emerged to sing a montage of Sound of Music songs, for a brief moment, I was mortified! That is until she opened her mouth. I know, I know, Gaga is a trained vocalist...I know, I know, she put out a great album with the one and only Tony Bennett... But I was still quite concerned she was going to butcher one of my all time favorite movies. But man oh man, that girl can SING! Like amazingly sing. If you didn't get to see her performance, you won't be disappointed.

(Via gAGAClub)

John Legend and Common brought down the house.

Many say Selma was snubbed this award season for lack of nominations, but one nomination (and win) that was completely deserved was for Best Original Song. Glory, written and performed by John Legend and Common, is more than a song, it is an anthem. All I have to say is, this song is incredibly powerful and the performance was out of this world. It not only brought the audience to their feet, but brought tears to the eyes of many.

In closing, I am sad it's over, but it is time to move on. I will miss you award season, but you are never too far away. Until we meet again, Oscar... until we meet again. 

Once again, in case you missed it, here are some equally awesome moments from the night. 

#Askhermore campaign.

(Photo via hellogiggles.com)

All I have to say is, thank you! 

Emma Stone's perfectly timed Lego Oscar.

(Image via vulture.com)

You'll always be a winner in our hearts, Emma!

Saddest Oscar moment of the night.

(Via mrstacey)

Michael Keaton puts away his acceptance speech when Eddie wins. You'll get them next time, Birdman. 

Julianne Moore FINALLY wins an Oscar!!

(Image via eonline.com)

She's awesome and it's about time. End of story. 

American Idol who?

(Image via eonline.com)

Jennifer Hudson proves she doesn't need American Idol. Just show them your Oscar JHud. You go Glen Coco. 

Patricia Arquette wants equal pay for women. And who can blame her. 

(Image via funnyordie.com)

Patricia Arquette's acceptance speech for Best Supporting Actress was gracious, lovely, and brought to light an injustice. Meryl and Jo Lo seem to be on board.

Thursday, February 5, 2015

Sundance Isn't Just for Movies.

Having lived in Utah almost all of my life, I don't think I really understood the hype that is Sundance. It was always something I had heard about, even ventured out to Park City a few times to see what the fuss was about. (Keep in mind my Sundance adventures were usually at night towards the end of the festival. So literally nothing and no one was there. Shame.)

But in recent years I have started to pay more attention. (How many Sundance movies was Anna Kendrick in last year?? I must see them all!) So this year, a few days before the festival began, a friend of mine asked me a very simple question. "Sundance?" My reply, "I'm so there it's insane."

So we grabbed out boots and coats and ventured to PC. What we saw there we were not expecting. ($60 for parking? Are you serious??) We cruised Main Street (at a whopping 0-5 mph) and took it all in. The clear mountain air, the crowd of eager celebrity stalkers, the too cool for school attitude of most of the media. It was majestic. We parked, (at a much more reasonably priced establishment,) and trekked over to the main event. 

Our main goal this trip was to see high profile celebrities. (Or even low profile celebrities really.) (Isn't that why most people go to Sundance? Wait... You mean they screen movies there too?!?...) I'll admit, I am fascinated (to an extent) by celebrities. But mostly the behind the scenes aspects of the entertainment industry is what really catches my eye. (The casting process, the production, editing, etc. etc.) 

Every club was for VIP's, (what do you mean we have to have credentials?) so besides walking up and down Main Street and getting free yogurt and protein bars, our adventure was far from being adventurous. That is until we hit the mother load. 

We found it. The tent that housed all of our hopes and dreams. The white tent of happiness. It was... The interview tent. The place our beloved celebrities came near and far to enter. Mecca if you will. 

This is where the likes of Jennifer Lopez, Nicole Kidman, Winona Ryder would flock. We knew there had to be a reason people were congregating in that area. So we decided to join the crowd of onlookers, so we stopped and we waited. And waited... And waited... Keeping our senses peaked and our eyes peeled. Scanning the crowd for a familiar face. Nothing. 

It took a little bit of time, (and some skepticism on my part), but it happened, our first sighting of the day. The one and only Connie Britton emerged into the glorious Park City air. That's right, Tami Taylor in the flesh. While I was as giddy as a school girl about seeing one of my favorite TV moms in the flesh, I didn't want to be "that girl" who freaked out when she saw celebrities, so I didn't snap a pic. I tried to play it too cool for school, and immediately regretted my decision. I love Tami Taylor. Like I LOVE HER. Why oh why was now the time that I chose to listen to my pride?? 

Oh Connie, so close, yet so far away!

After the Tami Taylor/Connie Britton incident, I quickly forgot about what little pride I actually had when Keanu Reeves and Molly Shannon graced us with their presence. Cut to myself quoting Speed and Superstar... 


Oh and who is that you see? Why Jason Sudeikis! Followed by Kevin Bacon and Kera Sedgwick. (THE BACON!) My brain was on overload. They were all really here. This is real life. I couldn't believe it. We were still reeling from our celebrity success when it happened.



He emerged.(After a little bit of waiting and a little bit of frostbite brought on by freezing temperatures.) It was almost like I could hear angels sing (or those angels could have been screaming girls... it's still a little hazy.) THE Chris Pine. Captain Kirk. Prince Charming. My imaginary husband had finally arrived.
My future husband. 

Sure he didn't stop and say anything to his adoring fans, he was clearly a man on a mission (as Captain Kirk always seems to be), but he did what any Prince Charming would do, and blew us all a kiss. I may have had to share it with a hundred other screaming onlookers, but I know it was meant just for me. I could feel it. Our connection was real. 

And just as quickly as it had happened, it ended. That was that. Chris entered the tent and we went about our way. While our fake relationship will last lifetimes, our real relationship was over. 
After my Chris Pine heartbreak, our Sundance experience was over. We walked back to our car, revived our frozen feet, and headed home. All in all it was a successful outing. We may not have gotten into any clubs, or seen any movies, but we had seen our fair share of stars. One day I will be able to tell mine and Chris Pines imaginary kids about the day that we almost met. It will be magical. 

While this year was mildly successful, next year I will be more prepared, I will have a flawless game plan. Or, it is possible, next year may play out the same way as this year. And you know what? I would be completely ok with it. Until we meet again Sundance. Until we meet again. 

Me and Tiff hitting Main Street. 

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Goodbye Empire State!

Farewell New York!

Well without further delay, here is the final New York post. It's sad, but true. I am just as heartbroken about it as you, because it means that New York is really over (my trip...not that the actual city is over...). That my small time in the big city has run its course.

But alas, let's save our tears until the end! Right now we still have an adventure to finish!

So, to pick up where we left off, lets journey back to the beginning of October. After we hit some of the sites and partied like it was 1999, it was time for a family reunion. My cousins Lexie and her husband moved to the Empire State about 6 months ago so she could go to school. And I am sure you know where this is heading...

Yep, we met up in the big city! It was like a scene from a movie! She took the in train in from Long Island, I took the subway in from Queens. We meet in the middle of Times Square, just across from The Naked Cowboy (true story). Our eyes met, and we embraced on the corner of 48th and Broadway! (Once again, true story!)

While it was a struggle to navigate the subway to Brooklyn, we eventually made it there like old pros! She took me to an awesome nyc experience of a food truck festival. It was right on the pier at the Brooklyn Heights Promenade, and let me just tell you, the food was to DIE for! 

Food Truck Heaven!

I had a 3 cheese grilled cheese on rosemary bread with caramelized apples. It was heavenly. Don't forget the fresh squeezed lemonade with chia seeds! And to top off our deliciousness, home made ice cream sandwiches made with oatmeal chocolate chip cookies and a dash of salt. O.M.G. Please excuse me while my taste buds explode. De-vine!

Eating lunch with Brooklyn on my mind!

Me and Lex

Trust me, we finished it all!

People think this is what SLC looks like...?

After we headed for a nice walk along the water and another jaunt across the Brooklyn Bridge, we went shopping in Soho. It was aamazing. I literally wanted one of everything. If only I had money...

NYC from Brooklyn

Brooklyn Bridge to Manhattan Bridge.

Empire State!

Another leisurely jaunt across the bridge.

Cousins in the city!

After some souvenir shopping and phone charging we headed back to meet my girls. (The had ventured on out to Coney Island for the day without me. Trust me, I made sure they knew exactly what subway line to take and when to get off. I was worried they wouldn't make it without me! I'm not even kidding...)

We wanted to see the Friends Couch from the TV show, but the line was too long. So I bid my lovely Lexie adieu, and the rest of us headed back to Brooklyn for some real life NYC pizza. One word, Grimaldi's.

Totally worth the wait! (Thanks Rach Smith
 for the suggestion!)

Cheesy goodness!

Pizza pizza pizza. Remember how I said New York food was amazing? It's still true. This little place was right under the Brooklyn Bridge, so it was an awesome setting too. What's even better, when we finished with our lavish pizza filled meal, there was a nice firework show over the water! It was really romantic!

The next morning we headed back to 8 o'clock coffee, aka Central Perk to relive our favorite Friends memories. (the line was not 3 hours long this time!) It was magical. We got to see real props from the show and see our favorite Friends moments! Not to mention sit on the infamous orange couch! It was almost like Ross, Rachel, Monica and the gang were there with us!

Central Perk! 

Memorable wardrobe from the show!

Who could forget the Big White Dog?


One of my favorite Friends moments!

Just hanging out at Central Perk!

We then headed up to NYU and walked around campus a bit, as we headed over to Washington Square Park. Look at that arch! Reminds me of the one in Paris! (Ok NYC and Paris really aren't that similar, but they're both awesome...?)

My first thought when I saw this street...
Selena was no where to be found. :(

Washington Square Park!

Since I met up with my cousin the day before, it was only appropriate to meet up with another NYC friend of mine the next day, right? So we headed up to the Upper West Side and met my buddy Heather Roberts. We worked at the spa together years ago, and she moved out to the city awhile back. I kept telling her I would come visit, but never did. Now I kept my promise!

My friends were good sports and tagged along for our lunch date, but we all had a good time.

Me and Hets! Yay!

After we devoured more good food, we head over the the CP. That's right, Central Park! It still amazes me how they have this huge awesome park in the middle of the city. It makes me so happy. We rented bikes, went for a row on the boats, and were able to Imagine with John Lennon. Also, we saw a TV show being filmed, which, for the movie and TV buff that I am, made me extremely happy!

Bethesda Fountain!

Bike rental! 

Row, row, row your boat!

Me and Stac!

Strawberry Fields Forever!

Let me just say, this was MUCH harder than it looks! I struggled 
for a good 5 mins before I got in the groove. 
Bless you Cristi for being my navigator! 

We worked up quite the appetite on our adventures in the park, so we once again headed to the best burger joint in the whole wide world. Hello Shake Shake! It's nice to see you again. This time we were at the Grand Central Station location, which was still just as yummy as the other one. Sigh. Oh Shake Shake. I still miss you everyday.

Shake Shack round two!

Well, now. The time had come. It was time to say goodbye. It was time to leave my city. But not before a few more stops along the way! 

The next morning, we headed back into Times Square to finish our souvenir shopping. And we did, a lot!! We also stopped by the LOVE Statue, which was pretty cool. I hid a note in Central Park for my cousin to find. (True story. It's like a treasure hunt!) and we hit Ellen's Stardust Diner, which I have to admit was mostly for my benefit. You see, the whole waitstaff sings! That's right, SINGS! Basically it's like being in the middle of a live Broadway show. Haha so I pretty much loved it.I went with my pop to this place the last time I was in the city. So it'll now be a tradition!

Saying goodbye to Times Square!

Loving the Love Statue!

Ellen's Stardust Diner sing Bang, Bang!

After we said farewell to my city, we headed to the airport. It was almost time to take off, but I had to do one more thing before I left. That's right, shake shack one more time! ;) haha it was the prefect send off!

Third times the charm!

It was so hard to say goodbye. The city still calls to me. Literally! I can hear it say my name. (But that could just be Lexie trying to convince me to move out there...) So there you have it my friends, my week in the city. I hope you all enjoyed reliving the experience as much as I did! I honestly can't wait to head back. I can guarantee you it will not be long before I head East again. It was a blast and so fun to experience it with my friends. Adieu New York! 

Here are a few photo extras to enjoy! 

Staten Island Ferry!

Goofing off in Chelsea. 

Just a model posing at The High Line

Rockefeller Center! Still no Tina Fey... :(

How I spent the whole trip, navigating on my phone while 
they goof off! ;) Sorry for posting Cristi.

Found my Minion buddy!

Radio City!

I will actually miss this a lot! 

Favorite Subway moment!