10 of the Best Moments from TVLand’s “Younger” Before You Catch Up on the Season 5 Premiere

I’ve been hooked on TVLand’s “Younger” since Day 1. I mean, Broadway legend (and star of ABC Family’s short-lived “Bunheads” series, RIP) Sutton Foster stars alongside former child star Hilary Duff in a fun comedy brought to life by legendary “Sex and the City” creator Darren Star? What isn’t there to love?

TV Land

And while I’m clearly not part of TVLand’s target demographic (especially at the time of the show’s season 1 premiere), the show’s witty dialogue, showcase of female friendships, and a killer storyline had me hooked from the pilot. (I even loved the book that the series was based on!) Whether you’re #TeamJosh or #TeamCharles, we can all totally agree to being #TeamYounger because it’s relevant, funny, and charming. It’s no wonder the season five premiere, that debuted on June 5, came one day after news of a season 6 renewal and coincided with the actual release of the “Marriage Vacation” book, and fans went crazy. (I mean, OMG that ending! Gobsmacked. What’s going to happen next?!?!) To celebrate the season five debut of our favorite summer series, let’s relive our favorite memories of the past four seasons of the Empirical gang (and friends) before following along with all the antics and adventures of season 5 this summer.

1. Diana’s Breakthrough and Realizing “I Deserve Better”

In Season 4, Diana, after falling for and cohabiting with her boyfriend Richard, she finally realizes how she doesn’t need him and is strong without him. It’s perhaps one of the character’s best shining moments where we see her humanity, vulnerability, and her strength. Where she realizes how much she’s grown and doesn’t need to put up with anyone that manipulates her and that she deserves better. Standing O for Diana (portrayed beautifully here by Miriam Shor). And ending with her staring into the mirror, tying off her gigantic flower necklace. Truly moving and empowering.

2. Maggie Continuing to Be a Badass

Early in Season 4, Josh dates Maggie’s former apprentice “Montana” who then appropriates Maggie’s work for her own gallery show. Naturally, the strong and confident Maggie doesn’t take it well. Hence, her and Liza crashing the art show, switchblade in hand. Bam. And then uses it to pick up a slice of pepperoni as she walks out. Could Maggie (Debi Mazar, accompanied by her own switchblade brought to set for this) be any more of a badass, no-nonsense woman? We could all use a bit a Maggie’s confidence to walk into any room and just own it.

3. Liza Wants Josh to “Have Everything”

Following Maggie’s Switchblade Escapade, we get such a sweet, tender moment between exes Josh (Nico Tortorella) and Liza (Sutton Foster) about why she kissed Charles in the Hamptons and her wanting to be the fun, bookish “Aunt Liza” to Josh’s future kids. While #TeamJosh may have been crushed, it’s a sweet moment of friendship because these two people really did—do— care about each other. It was a nice moment to cap the episode off with.

4. Season 4, Episode 4 “In the Pink”

This episode had some great female friendship moments, such as the four girls sitting on the couch, supporting each other. Another beautiful moment was the fight between Kelsey (Hilary Duff) and Liza (for Liza withholding her secret) concluded with Kelsey understanding how everything her friend did was for her daughter, and that was a sweet empathetic moment for the two friends to become closer. This episode seemed to be the epitome of what the show is really about and focuses on: female friendships. And what a nice sentiment, and one that’s not often seen as the central storyline on TV.

5. Diana and Kelsey Let Loose and Bond at a NYC Bar

I don’t think we’d ever seen these two characters have a social conversation prior to this scene. Diana, who has sort of become this mentor for her assistant Liza, only really had a professional relationship with coworker Kelsey. It was nice of Diana to recognize something she herself went through in Kelsey and then take on the role of mentor to her as well. And I mean, seriously, she’s right: “you can’t be sad or lonely surrounded by a drunken mob of gay men singing show tunes.” I’ve been to Marie’s Crisis, the New York bar they visit, and it’s exactly how they portray it, and it’s another aspect of female friendship and mentorship that makes this show special.

6. Bridging Liza’s Two Worlds… aka Fusing Millennial Culture With Her Real Life

One thing that I think engages Millennials to watch the show is definitely the use of modern cultural slang, terms, and Internet culture. (Some of which I barely even know before the episodes air!) One funny scene is Liza reading an old-school type definition of meme, where Kelsey points out examples (i.e. Salt Bae), and then the “real grown-ups” come up with “analog” versions to compare it to. This concept has been done on the show since the beginning, where in preparation for Liza’s first interview as a “26-year-old,” Maggie asks her to name the members of One Direction and choose her favorite one. A humorous part of the show that never fails to make me laugh.

7. The Importance of Female Friendships and Liza Being There for Kelsey When’s She Down

One of my favorite parts of the show is the focus on strong female friendships, such as this scene at the Millennial Imprint launch, where Liza physically is there to pick Kelsey up off the floor and cut her out of her dress, but also is there emotionally for her friend having a panic attack. It’s one of Liza’s strengths: how much she cares for people, especially her friends. It’s a nice moment to see, aside from the workplace comedy, Millennial slang and inside jokes, and love triangles and romantic interests, the focus on friendship is a nice central theme that keeps me engaging with the show season after season.

8. When Liza Meets Josh… And Her Double Life Is Officially Born

Upon meeting Josh for the first time, you start to see how this divorced mother could actually pass for 26 amongst other 26-year-olds in the city. Not only that, it’s the beginning of a silly gag of Liza doesn’t know this or that Millennial term, here it’s Lena Dunham. It’s a sweet exchange that establishes their chemistry as well as some funny moments adding some comedy to the show. This scene in the pilot, as well of the rest of the episode, had me hooked to keep watching, especially in the witty dialogue the writers create for each episode. Well done.

9. The Beginning of a Beautiful Friendship Between Liza and Kelsey

As previously established, the show does well at portraying and focusing on female friendships. Here in early season one, they found a way to show these two friends growing closer without losing a sense of comedy, like retrieving your friend’s stuck feminine “accoutrement.” These two women are comedy gold. Here for friends supporting and helping each other in need, always, no questions asked.

10. “You Pretty Woman’d Me!”

http://www.tvland.com/episodes/wgholb/younger-girl-code-season-1-ep-105

As Liza’s apology to Maggie for ditching her and her art show for her new twentysomething crew, she makes a big Pretty Woman-sized gesture to make up for it: showing up in a limo with roses to Maggie on their Williamsburg fire escapes. I loved this moment of female friendship on the show, especially between Maggie and Liza because it’s probably the one place where Liza is free of all the secrets and lies and Maggie still accepts her. It’s a beautiful friendship, and I love that they found a way to incorporate a moment from one of my favorite rom-coms so seamlessly and effortlessly into the plot.

Cheers to many more humorous, charming, and vulnerable moments in store for season five! And try not to audibly gasp when you get to that scene in the season 5 premiere: speaking from experience on that one. 😳

Breaking Down the Guys Competing for Roses on This Year’s “The Bachelorette”

By now, everyone knows how the end of “The Bachelor” went down: when Arie acted like a complete dirtbag and proposed to Minnesota-based publicist Becca K (albeit not very lovingly at all) and then promptly set up an on-camera break up and refused to leave while she cried, mere weeks later. It was brutal and we, as loyal members of #BachelorNation, flipped on the former racecar driver so fast for the horrible way he treated Becca and her emotions. *eye roll* Well, we moved on and thank goodness ABC decided to “do the damn thing,” aka making Becca the next franchise lead.

Stemming from the “Independent Woman” promo starring Becca holding roses (naturally, obvi), we were so ready to DO THE DAMN THING and watch Becca find a worthy guy. (I mean, I was already sold on four of the suitors she met at the After The Final Rose taping.)

And now, mere weeks away from the premiere of what’s being described as a “kick ass” season, ABC has released the headshots, bios, and the mostly ridiculous careers of Becca’s suitors. What follows next but my natural first impressions and judgements of these guys?? So, let’s do this.

First step, let’s relive my thoughts from ATFR, taken directly from my Twitter page, where she met five of the guys:

I like Lincoln: so sweet.

Ok. First Impression Rose. Done, Lincoln wins.

One look at Chase. Nope. Bad vibes.

Ok this banjo guy [Ryan] is so cute and sweet. My top pick.

Darius is apologizing on behalf of his gender. HAHAHAHAHAHA

Ok. And Blake. Top three with Ryan and Lincoln. Ok, Becca, yea, I think this journey is going to be good.

So already, I was primed to like Lincoln, Ryan and Blake as my top picks. Let’s what the rest of these bios reveal. One: Becca definitely has a type from first glances alone and there’s a lot of hair gel, a lot. Two, the bios, which is a few sentences instead of the usual questionnaire, WHAT. Okay, let’s get over my initial shock that producers actually changed something from the show’s format and dive right into my first impressions.

Age 31, nice normal age of a contestant usually here for the right reasons. Apparently he likes country music, playing with his dog, going to the beach with his boat, and skiing. That’s like the male equivalent of being #basic.

He “considers himself a modern romantic who believes that two people need to be independent in order to truly love each other, so he’s looking for his equal match.” Fair point, I like it. If he can swing dance, I’d like to say, we need proof. How cute would a swing dance date be with Blake and Becca? Not to mention reality TV gold for a show trying to evoke a romantic feeling. Ohhhh yea, he showed up on the horse, I liked him even then!

Nope. This is the smarmy guy we met on ATFR. Didn’t need to open his mouth, didn’t like him. Those feelings still apply for the Florida-based Advertising VP who is big into sports, the outdoors, and adventure. So Becca, please heed my warning (because I’m usually pretty good at spotting the players this show casts), and let him go already.

Seems nice and normal, perhaps a bit too into fitness. So, I’m guessing he’ll be shirtless often at the Mansion? Also, his goal is to follow in his family’s footsteps and retire by 40… So, um, you work until age 40 and then that’s it? You’re done? I just don’t get it…

Does Becca like an athlete? Because a lot of her guys, Christian included, like to boast about their athletic pasts and accomplishments. So, his biggest fear is “spilling something on himself” in front of Becca. DUDE, that would be me 24/7. I’m just saying, if a guy can’t handle me at my clumsiest self, than he doesn’t deserve me at my classiest, most put together self. (Did I do that popular Twitter meme correctly??)

Question, how does he pronounce his name? I’ll be waiting for his limo entrance for an answer. He’s a former Harlem Globetrotter, so I’m guessing he’ll be on a basketball or sports date at some point during his tenure on the show? OMG, he hopes finding love with Becca will be a “lay-up.” I’m rolling my eyes at that super cheesy line.

I WAS RIGHT, sports professional (and football player)! BAM. Sorry, I just like to be right. True gentleman, ok that’s nice.

IS HE A COUNTRY SINGER? TELL ME HE’S A COUNTRY SINGER/SONGWRITER. He’s got that look down pat. Oh, former footballer, and I apologize because now he dedicates his time to charity work and helping kids with CF and spending time with his family and dog. I’m so sorry, Colton. Wow, congrats on that amazing charity work you do. Mazel tov. But, question: so he famously used to date gymnast/Olympian Aly Raisman, whom he asked out via some sports interview thing, so is he here for the right reasons or more fame?? I’m skeptical.

Ooo, fitness coach: strike one. And fitness is his only thing mentioned in his two-sentence bio basically. So, bye.

Darius, who began his journey by apologizing to Becca on behalf of his gender and had the audience in stitches for it, seems like a stand-up guy. He likes to travel, dance and is energetic and fun-loving. The Milwaukee native (So, Midwestern values. Like Becca. And myself, just saying.) has perhaps one of the best lines written: “His most important mission is to live a life of service by giving back to others.” Bam, mic drop. Good guy.

Looks super young. And is another very basic Bachelorette contestant. I don’t think there’s anything else to say. But pretty and young. And hates avocado; so no brunch dates, I guess?

Apparently this fourth-generation electrician has a great sense of humor. I’m afraid I’ll need proof before you may continue on the show.

Sales rep and outdoors guy, that’s about it.

Well, neither he or Becca would have to move if they ended up together. And that’s not exactly a selling point: case in point, Andi Dorfman and Josh. Or Rachel Lindsey and Fred. And we all know how those instances turned out.

Lots of hair gel. A “successful banker with a heart of gold,” oh dear god, that’s cheesy. But he sings Disney songs, so he’s alright in my book because that’s my life and really all I listen to.

And welcome to the weird jobs club, Mr. COLOGNOISSEUR! Which just means he has a lot of cologne. Not his job, just a hobby for the Haitian-born Miami resident. Hey, Jean Blanc, are you going to gift Becca some cologne for your first meeting?? Also, the self-proclaimed bookworm is currently reading Amy Kaufman’s “Bachelor Nation,” book that I also read. LOLOL is this real? Like did he really think, ‘huh, you know what I want to read before I start this *cough cough* journey? The nonfiction book about the behind-the-scenes of this very show? You know the one that production kept trying to dismiss??’

Aww I feel bad, he’s “successful in produce, but unsuccessful in love” and “ripe and ready to be picked” by Becca. Awwww, poor guy. Produce puns, ughhh. But that first part? I feel so bad for him. Aww, sympathy rose from me.

I have a strong feeling this Silicon Valley tech guy won’t make past night one. Just a feeling. But “world-famous” banana bread? I’m afraid, I’ll need some proof John, if you’re going to use that statement. And by that I mean, bake me banana bread to judge.

Wait, is that Robby Hayes?? He looks very slick, anddd there we go, he’s a male model. Red flag alert. Also, he can run a mile in 4.24. For comparison, I would be huffing and puffing, exhausted by the start line while he concludes. So, that could never work out. Just saying.

May I ask what a “social media participant” means? Like a social media user? Yea, that’s like everyone. It’s free, you can say what you want, yea… Or is he prepping of his post-show career as an influencer? He also “dabbles” in male modeling who won’t get his hands dirty because he’s afraid of spiders. K, I’m laughing. Poor guy, doesn’t stand a chance.

That is 100 percent my brother’s hair and now I cannot unsee it. I’m sorry Leo, but I’ll be biased against you all season. I’m sorry, that’s my brother’s hair and I just can’t see past that. I’m sorry. Ok then, moving on, he’s a stuntman, yea that seems about right. That hair took ten years??? LOLOL, that took my brother like a few months. HAHA.

First, THAT ACCENT. As someone who’s lived in London for a bit, I love a British accent, so, sorry guys: Lincoln is already a step ahead. Aww cute, he “would love to have a big family to make his mom proud.” So cute. And he has such a nice smile.

Hard pass on the hair, first off. It’s like wannabe Leo (or my brother haha) hair but not quite as good looking. Second, he loves festivals, horse races, and state fairs. Wow. Ok, bye now.

Life of the party? Fun-loving attorney? And a “weekend warrior” enjoys “brunches, barbecues, and the beach?” And alliterations, duh. Yea, I’m saying, PASS.

Rickey with the cute lil bow tie is what else for a Bachelorette contestant? Personal trainer. Course.

IT’S RYAN. Banjo guy!! *swoon* Aka Wells 2.0. And I’m okay with that. The 26-year-old “banjoist” (apparently that’s a thing) is very close with his family (who all plays in a bluegrass band with him, awww cute), plays the ukulele, guitar, and trombone, and is passionate about sailing, and wait for it: “can’t wait to make the Bachelorette his first mate.” Done, Ryan wins. Number one pick, hands down. I choose Ryan, everyone else can go home now.

And another model. Greaaaaaaat. Cool. Yup. Say no more, I’m out.

The California native seems nice and normal, and also really loves Harry Potter. Hope Becca (and her Sister Act 2 fandom) can mesh with Wills and his love of HP.

So get ready for May 28, break out your Bach Brackets and get your Fantasy Leagues ready to do the damn thing. And by that, I mean watch yet another dramatic journey where hopefully the lead falls in love and has about a 40% percent of staying together.

Until next time,

My Summer 2018 Reading List

As you may know, I read a lot, like a lot. But is that necessarily a bad thing? Nope, not in my eyes! And with summer fast approaching and my vacay plans finalized that means it’s time to get my summer reads in order (preferably in time to pack in my carry on before I get on the plane). So, what am I reading this summer?

“A Lady’s Guide to Selling Out” by Sally Franson

This debut novel is describes a brilliant young woman navigating a “tricky twenty-first-century career” and who she wants to be in this “savagely wise debut novel in the tradition of The Devil Wears Prada.” The novel follows protagonist Casey, a book-loving English major now “selling out” and working for a top ad agency, finding it perplexing how quick some clients are willing to compromise their integrity, and then when Casey is faced with a situation (lol I don’t want to spoil too much),  she can “no longer ignore her own nagging doubts about the human cost of success.”

With “observations about everything from feminism, pop culture, and social media,” this novel is the “story of a young woman untangling the contradictions of our era and trying to escape the rat race– by any means necessary.” Summer read, yes please!

“Crazy Rich Asians” by Kevin Kwan

I have to admit, the trailer of the movie adaptation first peaked my interest. I mean, I always saw it on the bookstore shelves during one of my routine browses. But IDK, nothing really pulled me to the cover and the title to read the back summary or the first few pages over the thousands of other books around it. And then, when I saw the trailer, immediately I was hooked. It seemed like the perfect summer read.

So, in case you’ve ben living under a rock and missed the national bestseller or its movie trailer ads, the book chronicles New Yorker Rachel who agrees to accompany her boyfriend home to Singapore to meet his “traditional” family. But what she doesn’t know? His childhood home is a palace, they will be attending his cousin’s “wedding of the year,” he’s one of Asia’s most eligible bachelors, and his mother isn’t quite sure Rachel is the right one for her son. Dramatic? Juicy? I’m so in.

“The Favorite Sister” by Jessica Knoll

As you may remember a few months ago, I read Knoll’s debut book “Luckiest Girl Alive.” And devoured it. Well, she just released her next novel, and from the Amazon summary alone, I’m hooked. It’s a “blisteringly paced thriller starring two sisters who join the cast of a reality TV series,” where “one won’t make it out alive. So… who did it?” Now, I’m not usually a thriller or mystery-type reader, but I was hooked on her last book and the summary.

So, five “hyper-successful women” agree to appear on a NYC reality series called ‘Goal Diggers,’ where the first season ends unexpectedly ends in murder. Now, that seems a bit like Lifetime’s “UnREAL” a bit (without the dating competition part), and that had me intrigued. The novel “explores the invisible barriers that prevent women from rising up the ranks in today’s America—and offers a scathing take on the oft-lionized bonds of sisterhood, and the relentless pressure to stay young, relevant, and salable.” Added to my Amazon cart ASAP.

“Marriage Vacation” by Pauline Turner Brooks

I’m a HUGE fan of TVLand’s “Younger.” (Like OMG how is season five going to go down???) As fans will certainly remember from season 4, #TeamCharles was briefly disrupted by the arrival (or more like, return) of Charles’ ex-wife who comes back to the city, armed with a new manuscript for Liza’s attention and wanting to put her family back together in their blissful Upper East Side life. Then this spring, the powers that be annoucehed that her popular novel on the show was hitting bookstore shelves IRL! I mean, yes please! Even if only to find out what’s on page 58 for ourselves.

For those non-“Younger” fans, one: go watch the show (it’s all there on Hulu to binge, you’re welcome for tip). And two, here’s a bit about the book. Kate Carmichael has a seemingly perfect life: two adorable daughters, an Upper East Side prewar townhouse, and a devoted husband who runs a successful publishing company in NYC. But when Kate reconnects with her successful friends from school, she sees her life in a different way in the career she didn’t pursue and the dreams she hid away. And so, she flies halfway around the world for what was supposed to only be a few weeks, instead of returning to her family, to clear her head and reconnect with those former dreams. But her adventure “doesn’t go quite as planned.” Intrigued? And not just find out what TV Charles did on page 58. And onto my Amazon preorder list it goes until it’s early June release…

I’m already super pumped to start reading, although my patience is really being tested to not get carried away and start reading now, and waiting until my flight takes off and I’m officially in vacation mode to savor these new reads.

Keep on reading!

44 Thoughts I Had Watching Lifetime’s “Harry and Meghan: A Royal Romance”

One thing about myself: I’m– err, is “obsessed” an okay word to use here– okay, fine, obsessed with cheesy Lifetime romance movies, and specifically royalty themed ones at that. I devour them all, with pleasure. Sometimes you just need to kick back and watch a feel-good, happily-ever-after film to calm down and relax, right? Especially in today’s stressful times. So, at the mere announcement that Lifetime would make another made-for-television movie chronicling the courtship and eventually engagement of the Royal Family, needless to say, I was excited. I mean, I loved their Will & Kate love story movie that aired back in time for their 2011 Royal Wedding starring Grey’s Anatomy surgical resident Camilla Luddington as the future Duchess.)

So, in preparation for the Royal Wedding later this week, of course I had to watch Lifetime’s “Harry & Meghan: A Royal Romance” in all it’s cheesy goodness. Starring Parisa Fitz-Henley as the former Suits actress (I mean, doppleganger alert!!) and Murray Fraser (although the Scottish actor is not a natural ginger) as the famed prince, it’s definitely all I imagined a royalty-themed Lifetime romance movie to be, with some, err, questionable moments of “um, did that actually happen?” cushioned around cheesy romance movie goodness, and the ultimate scene stealers of Prince George and Princess Charlotte’s adorable onscreen counterparts.

Lifetime

Now, sit back, relax and watch how Harry met Meghan (come on, you knew that pun was coming!) and read on for a random collection of my thoughts and musings from watching your next royal-themed guilty pleasure.

Okay, here we go:

  1. We start with a young “Prince Harry”, post-Diana’s funeral on a safari with his “Pa” and big brother. Um, did that Harry running away, next to a growling lion actually happen? Because, terrifying.
  2. “Diana” and little “Harry” sneaking donuts in the palace, aww.
  3. A young “Meghan Markle” starts her feminist agenda early on, and YOU GO, Young Meghan!
  4. Jump ahead, Markle is Rachel Zane shooting Suits and giving her two-cents on how to make Rachel more empowering; Go, Meghan, Go!
  5. Flip to London (still in 2016), where “Harry” is out partying and clubbing. Err, wasn’t that years before they met and not mere months?? Um, continuity.
  6. Was the only casting requirement for Prince William that his hairline must be receding? Because that’s like the only similarity between the actor and the Duke of Cambridge.
  7. Haha “Charles,” “After the Nazi costume and showing off the family jewels in Las Vegas…” HA HA HA.
  8. What’s with this whole painting Will and Kate’s marriage as stiff?? Like, no, they are happy IRL… Come on, Lifetime. Who’s buying that?
  9. Back to “Meghan” in Suits land, the couple’s mutual friend “Violet” sets the two up. “Is he nice,” Accurate. “Is she hot,” Come on, like Harry actually asked that? In 2016, he wasn’t into the partying/wild side anymore. Eye roll.
  10. Look at “Harry” being 40 minutes late, and “Meghan” isn’t having any of it. Bam.
  11. Is it me or is Murray Fraser a bit more attractive than the actual Prince Harry? Er, sorry not sorry…
  12. This first date is quintessential Lifetime/romance movie. And I love it. Definitely scripted truly to be the “best blind date ever.”
  13. Haha, “Meghan” just oh so casually reading The Crown, as “Harry” (who introduces himself on the phone as Harry… Mountbatten-Windsor when she feigns remembering him lolol) pauses a scene of Suits… Haha well done, writers, well done.
  14. DUDE, THEIR SECOND DATE IS A TRIP TO BOTSWANA TOGETHER. Um, where do I get my own Prince Harry???
  15. BABY “GEORGE” AND “CHARLOTTE.” Best (and cutest) characters!! I mean, so adorable.
  16. That lion metaphor, aww perfectly timed with the film’s Mother’s Day premiere. I see what you did there, writers.
  17. HA HA “Harry” comparing “Meghan’s” story of being biracial to being “a ginger in England” with some truly terrible bad jokes… And are we to believe that Meghan has never heard of the term “ginger??”
  18. Is this super-light, PG-13-type sex scene the one that the Royal Family was worried about? Because, it’s fairly tame as far as sex scenes go and it’s kind of a Lifetime/romance movie staple scene…
  19. “Glass ceilings not glass slippers.” YESSS. Love it.
  20. Everything is so quintessential Lifetime movie, and it’s perfect and cozy and familiar and enjoyable.
  21. Her HAIR stylist could only come up with a frog costume? Like he couldn’t have done something with a mask or glasses and change his recognizable red hair??
  22. “Meghan” meeting “George” and “Charlotte” is the cutest!
  23. Who TF is this “Bella” person? Because, I don’t like her snobby attitude at all.
  24. Oh yes, the statement that confirmed their relationship… Did he write it himself? Did he really threaten to tweet it himself? And did Meghan truly have no clue he did it??
  25. Post media frenzy, where did he find her?? Is she, and her mom, in Toronto? Or in California? Where was the lower third for this scene?
  26. “Because I’m a grown-ass woman living in the modern world.” Preach, girl.
  27. Her mom “Doria” is the best.
  28. HAHA that beanie.
  29. What’s a romantic movie without a running-through-the-airport-to-get-their-love-back scene?? But so romantic and effective.
  30. Flip ahead to “Pippa Middleton’s” wedding. Except she’s wearing a version of her maid of honor dress from Will & Kate’s wedding??
  31. There’s no way Kate actually called it a “no ring, no bring” policy..
  32. The casting for Charles and Camilla isn’t that great…. LOL
  33. This romanticizes their whole relationship, and I’m squealing. I love it. Such a great romantic, guilt pleasure watch.
  34. Also, how was the racist brooch incident, “Meghan” meeting “Charles” and “Camilla” for the first time and discovering “Kate” was expecting little Louis all at the same time at “Pippa’s” wedding???
  35. “You should have been able to be together from the start.” THEN YOU AND “WILLIAM” WOULDN’T HAVE EXISTED, “HARRY.”
  36. Haha “just a royal thing,” how very vague, “Harry…”
  37. Wait, he proposed in Africa? No, where’s the roast chicken in their Kensington Palace cottage??? Granted, it’s still romantic, but no it’s factually inaccurate.
  38. Omg, “Meghan” signing the little girl’s autograph. So cute, adorable.
  39. “Always tell your mom, everything.” Perfect for the Mother’s Day premiere date! And a true statement.
  40. The corgis!!!! Awwwww so cute.
  41. Geez, finally, the roast chicken proposal! Speaking of, what’s her recipe? Always looking for a good dinner recipe. Because I’m very limited on my kitchen skills.
  42. “My grandson, HRH Prince Henry of Wales, will be marrying a divorced, African American lady. Everybody on board?” YES, LOVE THIS “Queen Elizabeth II,” YOU GO GIRL.
  43. LOLOL and watch “Harry” and “Meghan” seamlessly blend into footage of the the actual royal couple at one of their first joint appearances for the ending scene (just like in the William & Kate movie).
  44. So happy. So cute. Awww. Just as you are supposed to feel about a Lifetime and romance movie.

Now, that’ll keep us tied over until we can watch the Royal Wedding livestream and savor over the wedding pictures this weekend.

7 Chic Pieces for a Rainy Day from Hunter x Target

The latest designer collab with Target is rainy-day chic!

Target has been known for its chic designer collabs popping up in stores, from Lilly Pulitzer, Victoria Beckham, and Magnolia’s Chip and Joanna Gaines, to name a few of the sold-out-within-hours collections. Next up, a fashion and accessories collection with famed British rain boots brand, Hunter.

Arriving Saturday, April 14, Hunter x Target is “inspired by family, festival and forces of nature” for a limited-edition collection “built on a philosophy of everyday adventure and a forecast of fun,” the Target site reads. The collaboration includes boots, outerwear, clothing, shoes, accessories and outdoor gear for the whole family.

I thought I’d share a few of my favorite fun, casual and cute Hunter x Target picks that will be sure to perk up any rainy day this spring.

1. Hunter for Target Women’s Waterproof Rain Boots

How could you do a Hunter collab without featuring their famous boots? That would be totally impossible! Boots for women, men and kiddos will all be available in different colors, patterns and height (knee and ankle length options). K, adding to my shopping cart now.

2. Hunter for Target Women’s Hooded Trench Coat – Khaki

I love this chic trench coat: perfect to keep your ensemble dry on rainy days without sacrificing style. A fun red stripe adds style and color to this hooded rain jacket. Where do I swipe my credit cart already??

3. Hunter for Target Women’s Side Zip Pencil Skirt – Black

I’m absolutely OBSESSING over this pencil skirt. It looks perfect for work hours as well as for after-hours and weekend days. Must-have list, for sure. And it’s black, so it’ll go with everything. Win-win.

4. Hunter for Target Small Pouch Bag

Available in a variety of hues, this small clutch is absolutely adorable to carry all your necessities for those days when you can’t lug a big tote (see below) around. I’m personally fond of the black and red options.

5. Hunter for Target Outdoor Blanket

Even though I’m not the most outdoorsy person, I find this outdoor printed blanket (in both red and blue patterns) to be absolutely perfect for a summer picnic or curling up with a book under a tree in the park. Sign me up!

6. Hunter for Target Rubber Handle Tote Bag

Walk around town carting all your belongings in this big bright tote that can hold it all. I think this would be absolutely perfect for my family’s vacation up in Idaho this summer, especially when we go up to the lake for a day! It’ll perfectly hold all of our beach belongings, while looking super cute. Or just using while running daily errands. Either works.

7. Hunter for Target Bubble Umbrella

Stay dry with the large and bright umbrella to keep your look in tact when it’s pouring out. It’ll add some much needed cheer on those dreary, rain-filled days! Cute and practical: just what I’m looking for in an umbrella!

March/April 2018 Reading List

After quickly completing my January and February reading lists, once again I was on the hunt for some new reads. And so, what naturally follows? Heading to Barnes & Noble to browse through every single fiction aisle and shelf and see what strikes my fancy, naturally. And boy, did I find enough. Armed with a heavy bag of new books, I left the store ready to begin these new reading adventures.

“Bachelor Nation: Inside the World of America’s Favorite Guilty Pleasure” by Amy Kaufman

This nonfiction debut book from L.A. Times writer and self-proclaimed “Bachelor” fan, Amy Kaufman. Kaufman researched and interviewed experts to find out what really goes down in the Bachelor mansion while filming the hit reality franchise, and exploring why we all turn in week to week to watch it all unfold.

As an avid watcher of the franchise (lol could you tell from this blog??) and its fictional counterpart “UnREAL,” I was definitely as intrigued as I read the revelations from Kaufman’s original New York Post excerpt. I was curious, and so: reading list, here we go!

It wasn’t until Lifetime debuted “UnREAL,” that I even truly comprehended that something like “The Bachelor” or other reality shows were so produced. (I always knew they were scripted ala “Kardashians” but the dirty deeds of production? I was completely in the dark like most members of Bachelor Nation.) This book truly opened my eyes to how one of my ultimate guilty pleasures, so from now on (like Becca K’s ex showing up on this recent season? Come on.), in the name of media literacy, I can now comprehend what is actually going on and take the show as it is (a pleasure-filled dramatic television series) with a grain of salt. An interesting look at the psychology of a popular television franchise, how it gets made, and why we continue to enjoy watching such a trainwreck of drama.

“The Recipe Box” by Viola Shipman

The recently released novel explores the life of Sam, a busy sous chef for a hot New York bakery. Her life isn’t going as she planned, so she returns home to her small Michigan town to take inventory of her family’s orchard and pie shop. There, she discovers secrets and memories of her family, one recipe at a time in the heirloom recipe box. The inside cover continues, “As Sam discovers what matters most in her life, she opens her heart to a man she left behind but who now might be the key to her happiness.”

It seems intriguing, with a hint of cheesy romance often found in corny Hallmark romance movies. I’m in.

 

 

“Young Jane Young” by Gabrielle Zevin

The new novel by “The Storied Life of AJ Fikry” author illustrates the world of protagonist Aviva, a former congressional intern who was once the center of a political scandal that now may threaten her own bid for political office years later. The inside summary reads that this novel is a “smart, funny, serious, and moving novel about the myriad of ways in which roles are still circumscribed for women, whether they are young, ambitious interns; mothers attempting to steer their daughters through a male-dominated world; political wives facing an age-old knowledge that fidelity isn’t always honored; or young girls feeling bold about their many choices before they release the gender restrictions all around them.”

Seems interesting, especially as it tackles important issues that women still face everyday. Andddd… to page one we go.

“Hot Mess” by Emily Belden

In this installment of Miranda Reads Cheesy Millennial-Type Novels, Emily Belden’s “Hot Mess” seemed to intrigue me in such a way. The story centers around Allie, a twentysomething who is so infatuated by her love for sought-after, culinary genius Benji, despite storied past struggling with addiction and living an often-reckless lifestyle. When he is offered the job of a lifetime in creating a hot New York restaurant, Allie follows her love and takes a giant leap: investing her life savings in the establishment. What happens when Benji takes off on a relapse, leaving Allie alone with “nothing but a massive withdrawal slip” and an approaching opening day. She is suddenly thrust into the “world of luxury and greed, cutthroat business and sensory delight. Lost in the mess of it all, she can either crumble completely or fight like hell for the life she wants and the love she deserves.”

Seems promising and interesting to say the least, in a typical Millennial-centric novel, but let’s give it a shot.

“Needles and Pearls” by Gil McNeil

I was fascinated by Gil McNeil’s “Needles and Pearls” novel, which focuses on widow Jo, a year after her husband’s death, where she is finally getting used to being a single parent to her sons and her yarn shop is doing quite well to boot. But then, a man from her past arrives as well as a new romance with a local carpenter develops to “make life a whole lot more interesting.” The book tackles if Jo can “cope when things get complicated.”

Hm, tell me more… Guess I better read to find out?

 

 

 

Keep on reading! 💖

What Happens When a Natural Makeup-Type Girl Tries a Bold Beauty Look In Real Life

Following up on part one of my blog post about trying a non-traditional, bold lip color for me, a girl that tends to stick to the neutral and natural look, my test continues here: where I wear my new purple MAC “Evening Buzz” matte lipstick out and about, as I go about my day-to-day activities within the city of Manhattan. How will it go? Keep reading to find out how I feel, the potential confidence I’ll need in order to pull it off, and if I get any strange or positive reactions from strangers I pass? Let’s try this and see how it goes…

It is such an edgier look for me, so I needed to make sure I found an edgy or trendy-enough outfit in my closet that would somewhat go with the lip color. (I mean, it was one thing to see how I felt and others reacted to the lip color alone? But if it doesn’t go with my outfit? I’m afraid of looking foolish, clown-like.

Some thoughts before I begin: I think I’ll need to have a lot of confidence to walk outside with *shudder* purple lipstick; and I’m nervous about that, because I normally walk with my head down and with purpose to get to my destination as quickly as possible to avoid drawing any attention to myself. So, this is definitely new for me: not just wearing the purple hue on my lips, but acting like I have complete confidence in myself when trying something new and different.

My nerves are kicking into overdrive as I prepare to apply my new lipstick. But, I’m trying to face more of my fears, one thing at a time, on this blog, so I want to cast those nerves aside; and so, I swipe on the lilac hue and walk out my apartment door.

HERE. WE. GO.

Taking My Test Into The Real World

The first application is always the hardest…

I had to remember to breathe as I walked down the street, my mind couldn’t help my wonder if I could pull off such a look like the throngs of trendy Manhattanites do everyday.

…And here we go.