Dec 30, 2010

HAIR CRISIS AVOIDED

Thank you to Taryn "I have a great colorist!"  Brooks for referring me to Michelle and Bruce K. Salon in La Canada.  It wasn't that bad of a drive, Michelle is amazing, and the price was equally fabulous.  Special thanks to my Mom for giving me the gonads to ask for a refund from the other salon and to Emily for talking me through the whole ordeal.

Now I'm back to blonde instead of that strawberry crap.  (Love the color, just not on me.)  However, I have to say I think men have a secret fetish for red hair.  I received 12, TWELVE text messages yesterday from my guy friends asking me to send them a pic, that red was hot, to keep it, etc.  Good thing I do my hair for myself and nobody else. :)

Again, thanks for the kind words, such as, "It probably looks great!"  Because it didn't.  Even Michelle said I looked like a drab version of Kirsten Dunst in Spiderman.

Off to the gym.  No pics today.

Dec 29, 2010

"I wasn't totally focused"


I'm not immune to my fair share of beauty debacles.  There was that time I got waxed and they ripped my skin off (along with my hair), which caused an allergic reaction and it looked like I had a disease for a good two weeks.  Then there was that time I tried dying my eyebrows: first, lighter, which made it look like I had none; then darker which resulted in a Groucho Marx ordeal.  I've had bad spray tans, terrible prom do's, and once I pulled out half of my eyelashes with an eyelash curler (I managed to snag myself a boyfriend that summer, by the grace of God -- thank Him for false individual lashes)!  And then there was the eyebrow incident of 2009.  If you don't know what I'm talking about, search around my blogs from last year.  I had a huge fiasco when I got my eyebrows waxed and documented the whole ordeal.  Heck, I'll make it easy for you.  Here is the link.  Needless to say I'm a little neurotic when it comes to clear skin and pretty hair.  It's all pretty comical at this point.

Today was... interesting.  If you follow 
me on Twitter, you know what's up: I got my hair colored and it's one shade short of a hot, nasty mess.  I needed to get my highlights touched up and wanted to do it before all the Rose Bowl festivities commenced (tomorrow), so I got on Yelp to read the recommendations for different salons.  I found one that had rave reviews and made an appointment. 



I went in shortly after I called and met with the colorist, told her what I wanted, yadda yadda.  I was assigned to this particular colorist because she specializes in Balayage color, a french technique that makes your color look "sun kissed."  People like Jennifer Aniston and Sarah Jessica Parker do this to their hair.  I've had it done a ton before but recently had to go back to foils (given my budget and who was available).  I desperately wanted to get back into Balayage.  I also wanted to go blonde-r, since my base (a neutral tone) had finally grown out and it would make for nice, natural lowlights.


So I always keep my girls with me: Hilary (Duff), Nicole (Richie) and Dianna (Agron).  I was spoiled before -- my previous colorist did both Hil's and Dianna's color and I got it all for free.  Seeing as I am not in the salon industry anymore, I don't get the luxury of using celebrity colorists anymore (womp womp).  But, what I hope is that when I find a colorist, they'll be able to emulate what I'm looking to do for my particular hair needs.  I always stick with these three because a) their color looks fab and b) their color isn't too far from mine... Dianna has the darker bottom and brighter top, so it's easy for me to say, "I like these tones and this color and how it has dimension," blah blah blah.


We briefly chat and she's making me feel confident.  I'm telling her how I love my base color and took forever to grow it out and how I'm looking to get a tad more blonde for the new year.  She's totally reaffirming everything I thought.  So we get started.  

She's kind of weirding me out at first because she's talking to me, but not looking at me.  She keeps staring at my head.  Which is normal, except every now and again the colorist usually looks up and makes eye contact.  I had this bizarre feeling that maybe she was high?  I don't know.  I should have gone with my intuition though.

Once she started applying the color, I noticed she was doing it rather sloppily and wasn't taking smaller pieces and painting them like I had done before; she was taking huge chunks and slathering them with too much color.  I told myself I was over analyzing and didn't worry about it.

It wasn't until after all the color was applied and I was sitting under the dryer and she forgot about me that I realized my color wasn't going to be up to par.  She took me to the sink, washed and rinsed me, and then let's me know after the fact that she applied a toner.  Toners can be great if they're applied correctly and, you know, in the RIGHT TONE.  When I sat back down in the chair, I knew my hair was doomed.  It was orange.

She blew it out and she goes, "Oh!  It looks like one color!"  You think?  She kept rambling about how after I washed it some that the blonde would pull through.  So, I left with my hair a) strawberry blonde, b) with no highlights, c) bleeding (where the colors bleed together and makes you look like a leopard) and d) no where close to what I wanted it to look like.

Needless to say I paid and left and then called them 700 times but because they have poor customer service, they didn't answer. I e-mailed them and then, FINALLY, I got a response.  A phone call.  They told me they'd try to find someone to fix it tomorrow and they'd call me back.  When they did, it was my colorist calling to ask what the matter was and if I would come back in because, in her words, she "didn't think she was focused," because of the holiday bustle and wanted to try again.  Oh, and because she wasn't focused she toned my hair with red toner.  RED.

A la Allie from The Notebook
Longest story short, they couldn't get anyone to fix my hair.  So I got a refund.  And the kicker was that as I was explaining to the manager about my hair issues (the bleeding, the color, the lack of highlights) he goes, "Oh, so do you think the toner made your hair red?"  Well, I don't know sir.  I'm not the professional.

So tomorrow I am on my way to La Canada to a friend's colorist to get this mess fixed.  And for all of you offering me moral support, thank you.  It isn't as bad as I thought it was five hours ago, but it's still pretty crappy.  Thank you all for dealing with my neuroses about having terrible hair color :)  Guys, line up, I know you'll be chomping at the bit to date me now!

It's red.

I'm obviously in a spectacular mood! (Don't worry I'm stopped.)

Not so bad... in this light

WOOF


Dec 28, 2010

Breaking up is hard to do, 2010

Let's be honest here. Breaking up in 2010 is equivalent to the black plague: it hit everyone and HARD. Not limited to us regular folk, some of our favorite celeb couples broke up:

- Courteney Cox and David Arquette
- Eva Longoria and Tony Parker
- Blake Lively and Penn Badgely
- Scarlett Johansson and Ryan Reynolds
- Kelsey Grammar and Camille Grammar
- Sandra Bullock and Jesse James
- Kim Kardashian and Reggie Bush (and Miles Austin?)

There's a number of thoughts in my head right now.

How does Kelsey Grammar get engaged before he's divorced? Sleezebag.

How does Jesse James move on so quickly from Sandy B??? I'm pretty sure he has a disease.

With the exception of a few, a majority of the women on this list are three times better than the men they are with. Which begs with question: are breakups inevitable if the woman is successful/more successful than the man?

Case and point: Courteney and David. Court was on Friends, a beloved show, and she's doing pretty well with Cougar Town. David was in Arachnophobia.

Sandra Bullock and Jesse James? Does this need any explanation?

Eva and Tony -- both successful... Eva is a babe, Tony isn't a guy I'd pick out of a lineup (unless it was for his height).

Scarlett and Ryan are an interesting duo, mostly because they both have solid careers. But Scarlett was the Black Widow in Iron Man 2 and Ryan's known for being Van Wilder. (Albiet hot and steamy, but still).

Blake got a boob job and a rhinoplasty and now that she's getting noticably more attention then The Badge (Penn), was it too much for him to handle? Rumor has it she was ready for a solid commitment (a.k.a a ring) and he wasn't. I mean, you could have worse problems, dude. A hot babe with an career that's about to blow up wants to commit herself to you? Tough life. (They have also been dating around two years, which reinforces my advice that if you are with someone 2+ years and he/she isn't ready to commit, they just aren't ready to commit to you.)

All these women are notoriously HOT and successful. Is something wrong with them? Do they have crappy personalities? I'm going with no, they all seem to be pretty charming. The only explanation (in my opinion) is that when a man feels inferior, he strays or lets go.

I'd like to consider all of this the exception and not the rule. There has to be men out there with solid careers that can make it work with women who have equal or more stature in their field, right?

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Dec 27, 2010

Bedtime Blessing for December 27th

God has entrusted to us a great deal. He knows that awe can do all things by His grace, so He's trusting in us to trust in Him. Yet He knows our fears as well, otherwise He wouldn't assure us so often of His purposes and His prescence.
We feel hurt and alone, God assures us He cares.
We feel angry and resentful, God provides wisdom and strength.
We feel ashamed, God grants forgiveness and comfort.
We fee anxious, God promises to supply our needs.

You have seen my affliction; you have known the troubles of my soul. Psalm 31:7

Short blurbs that aren't worth a full post

- It's the night of my birthday and for the past three years I've galavanted downtown to Austin with a gaggle of friends. This year I have decidedly shut down the whole operation because I am sick, and a night on the town isn't going to help me prepare to get stable for the Rose Bowl. I was a little down tonight. It could have been because I know I'm leaving the day after tomorrow, and I always get a tad emotional when I leave home. It's where the heart is, after all. Or it could be that I'm getting older and I really don't want to be. Maybe it's because I'm sick. I know, nobody should cry on their birthday (I felt pathetic doing so), but I teared up when my family was about to sing to me. It was then that my Dad came over and said, "Kirbie, it's not that bad. You're only 24! I'm almost 53 and I don't even cry."

He always helps me to crack a big smile and take my mind off my worries. He knows how to make me feel better. And that is why family is so important. Because in the end, you'll be cutting a bright pink ice cream cake with your family when no one else will. :)

PS Thank you all again for the kind words today, I feel so special and I feel blessed to have all of my friends in my life.

- Mom and I are watching Hoarders. What the hell? It says that hoarding is a mental disorder that affects three million people. THREE MILLION. Um, can we be honest here? Hoarding is really just something I like to call laziness and lack of self control. It's like obesity that is caused by overeating and no exercise. I mean, we're watching this one woman with three children whom all have this gnarly bacterial infection ON THEIR FACES. The Mom can't barely maneuver around the kitchen because there's so much ca-rap everywhere, and the middle daughter has written letters about how she feels unloved with the house being so dirty -- so much so that she's depressed and wishes she could kill herself. Uh, lady, get your act together!!!! It's not hard to clean dishes, or clean up a room, or, you know, throw crap away that you don't need? I can barely sleep on sheets that have gone two weeks without washing; watching this show puts shivers up my spine. A woman just goes, "IT'S A POSSUM! A POSSUM! PICK 'EM UP BY HIS TAIL AND SHAKE 'EM!" Seriously.

- Relationships. Aren't they special? Yeah, if you're in one. Ladies, can I say this politely? I'm trying to find the "right" way to say this without ruffling any feathers. If your boyfriend is rude to you in public, if you constantly fight with another; even if you don't, if you feel like you're working entirely too hard to make things work, chances are you are right. I've been in better long-distance relationships with people than some of the five-minute-away relationships you're currently in. If he's constantly making some dumb@ss move to upset you, if he goes on drinking binges and texts his friends about how hot another chick is, if you would drop all your plans/rearrange your life to spend time with him but he won't do the same for you... I have to tell you something: he is not in love with you.

Yeah, that might be hard to swallow. But I know I'm right. How do I know this? Because there is a guy out there who knows the right things to say or do, who is man enough to realize you are the only person he desires (and no one else will compare), that would drop anything and everything, would drive/fly/crawl to see you if only for five minutes, if that meant seeing your face. Yes, there are men out there like this, and I know because my dad feels that way about my mother. My best friend Erin's husband (crazy that I'm saying that!!!) feels that way about her. I'm only 24 but I know these things are real. When you see them happen between other people, you wonder why some people are dealing with the shenanigans they're dealing with.

I'm speaking to a few particular groups. First up: The "But he's a great catch!" group. Okay, he may be great. He may be "nice." He may not be doing anything wrong (or intentionally wrong), but he's not doing a lot of the right things either. He's nice, but he's not the nice guy for you. I mean, there are the great guys that aren't giving you what you need, but they're still a great catch. And those types of guys don't exactly need to change, it's just that the chemistry isn't there. But don't use that as an excuse to keep perpetuating a relationship that's going to go nowhere. Don't settle if the feelings or emotions aren't there.

Then there is a horse of a different color I'm reaching out to. The "But there's nothing wrong!" group (or there probably is but you're in denial). Listen, I can't speak for anyone but myself, but if I'm in a relationship, I'm thinking the person I'm with is worth inspecting to see if he could be my future mate. If we're dating, that's another thing. That's for kicks, someone with no real strings attached (which can be great if that's what you're looking for). But if I like someone enough to risk going FBO (Facebook Official), then chances are I'm wondering if this is a man worth keeping. And I'm positive most women feel the same way. (Guys, that's a useful piece of info for you as well.)

SO, with that being said, what are you women(men?) doing in a relationship with someone whom you have no reason to want to keep for the future? He won't mature, he won't commit, he won't compromise, he won't give you the time you deserve -- more seriously, if he won't stop excessively using alcohol or is doing drugs, it's time to walk out the door. Don't look back, just walk out. Because if you're spending your time thinking you're going to change him, let me tell you, you won't. He will change when (and if) he wants to, and sadly, sometimes they won't ever change. In the movies, when the guys are like, "You've changed me!" to their sweetheart, it's usually after she's pretty much kicked him to the curb and has moved on and they're both crying in the rain and she's probably about to cheat on her fiance. But yeah, it's then that the guy decides to pull it together and change for the better. It's not during a blow-up fight that he's like, "EPIPHANY! I need to change/I want to change to make this work. And you sitting here crying has made me realize that." Nope, it usually doesn't go down that way.

Lastly, there's the "But he doesn't know what he wants!" group. How do I get through to you people? Your group, in particular, is the hardest group because the guy has you in a mind trap: he wants to take a break, he has "broken up" (quotations are his terms, not yours) with you, wants all the benefits of being with you (calling and talking, intimacy, all of the comfort zones guys need) but doesn't want to commit. He doesn't want the responsibility of being a boyfriend, but doesn't want to lose you either. He wants his cake and to eat it too (hate that phrase but it's fitting). NEWS FLASH: there is someone out there what would make a decision to be with you in a split second. They do not want risk the chance of losing you. It doesn't matter what is going on, they want to be with you 24-7, 365, on the reg-u-lar.

Now, what you should do is have a clean break up: a simple discussion about what is going to happen and why it has to happen that way (i.e. "We cannot be in contact if you do not see yourself with me at this point..."), and then prepare yourself to move on. Yet there is serious drama that occurs with this particular group that prohibits things from going this way.

Half of all this drama is due to the fact that everyone is all about being friends with their exes. First off, why torture yourself? This is the kind of poison that will tarnish any probability of a future friendship. I will admit that I'm friendly with a select few of my exes (there aren't a lot, which is why it's a select few). But I can tell you that after every break up it took some serious time before we could become friends -- that means we're friend-ly, not hanging out three times a week-- and that's just the normal part of moving on. It's hard to go from loving someone to just being a friend, anyone knows this to be true (it's not rocket science). And most guys, if they want to be with you, don't want you just as a friend. They want you on a deeper level. So save yourself some strife and let bygones be bygones, and maybe at one point you can be friendly.

The other half of the drama is because you two don't know if it's "the end." Will you get back together? Will you not? You love each other but the timing is wrong? The distance is too hard? Your lives are too busy? Whatever the reason, know this: if it's meant to work out, it will. But you have to move on. Move forward, leave the relationship behind. If you are supposed to be with that person, you will be. Easier said than done, but it's true.

I know there are some cases where couples have to break up/take a break/ whatever -- they come to a crossroad and things have to change for awhile -- and it ends up strengthening their bond and they get back together. But that's because they legitimately break up/take a break. They cut off all communication. They do not speak. They do not see each other. (Pretty much the definition of breaking up.) They isolate themselves from one another, and either they both realize they're better off or they realize they're meant to be.

Just remember this: Nobody that truly cares for you will play with your mind or your heart.

Hope I didn't lose a large majority of my female friends for this, but since I've been getting a rather large earful of relationship issues from you gals, I figured I'd put it the best way I could: in writing.

Decide for yourself you deserve someone who makes you want to be better than you are yet makes you feel like you have nothing to change. That's the type of person everyone deserves.

Location:Deer Trail,Georgetown,United States

An Old Soul: Josiah Viera


Have you heard of Josiah Viera?

If you have, you know what's to come. If you haven't, prepare to be blown away.

Josiah is just a child, only six-years-old. However, he's not like others his age. He suffers from Hutchinson-Gilford progeria syndrome, a rare disease that causes premature aging in children. This is an incredibly rare disease and currently only 13 children in the U.S. have it; 54 in the entire world. Children with this disease only live to be around 13-years-old.

Josiah is a walking miracle. He knows he has a disease and that it "hurts" him, but he doesn't let that affect his love for sports, one in particular: baseball.

I watched these two videos today and (excuse these links that aren't embedded -- my iPad wasn't giving me the code on YouTube for proper embedding) was brought to tears. You'd have to be a Scrooge not to fall in love with this little guy.

The best part about him has to be his attitude. He acts like he's seven feet tall! Not to mention has a playful, charming personality. I wish he had a baseball helmet that fit him correctly... looks like that might be something I look into getting done.

Hope you enjoy these videos as much as I did.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vTLsqfAzKxw&sns=em
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z9XmA0spCfI&sns=em

XoXo

Thank you, friends for wishing me a happy day! 24? Next year I'll be out of the 18-24 demographic (the marketer in me speaking), which means I'm stepping further away from high school and college!

I'm not going to get all deep or anything, but my life right now compared to what I was doing last year, or in 2007, or in 2005 (eek!) is worlds away from where I am at this point in my life. Pretty cool to look back and be grateful for good ole Father Time. I may be an adult, but I certainly have no idea what the heck I'm doing.

You know what they say though... Child at heart :)

Happy Rose Bowl week!!!!!!

Kirbie

Dec 25, 2010

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas!

To my loved ones, thank you. To those whom have left my life, bless you, and to the new ones walking in, welcome. :)

Here's to beautiful and rekindled friendships, to new friends and old. To everyone who has touched my heart in some shape, way or form.

I feel blessed. I don't know what's to come, why things work out the way they do, but I am certain 2011 is going to see me exactly where I'm supposed to be.

Love you all!

Dec 22, 2010

Smells like Roses: TCU invades Los Angeles

TCU's Rose Bowl uniforms from Nike

Come December 30th, plenty of people from Horned Frog Country will be invading good ol' SoCal.  While TCU has plenty of events planned, take some time to enjoy some of these attractions in you're around for a few days:

  • Universal Studios Grinchmas  Christmas may be over, but all the Whos in Whoville are spreading the holiday cheer over in Univeral City.  Take the Universal backlot tour and see all of the sets from your favorite movies, including (you guessed it) How the Grinch Stole Christmas
    DryBar
  • Drybar Los Angeles  I rave about this all the time and I can't wait to get my hair done for the party at the W on the 30th!  Drybar is a salon that only does blowouts -- they wash and blow dry your hair to perfection -- for only $35!  You can't beat that, especially here in LA.  They have four different locations, no matter where you stay, and is the perfect pick-me-up before a NYE celebration!  Be sure to book online now to get in
  • Runyon Canyon or Beachwood  Just because you're traveling doesn't mean you have to slack on that fitness of yours!  Runyon and Beachwood are both great exercise, and they're FREE!  Runyon is off of La Brea and Hollywood and Beachwood takes you around the infamous Hollywood sign
  • The Grove  Our version of outdoor shopping, The Grove has a very romantic feel to it.  Cute bistros, great stores, a movie theater and a watershow at the fountains!  Stroll along after dinner or before a movie to the tunes of Frank Sinatra and Etta James.  Stores include Nordstrom, Zara, Forever 21, The Apple Store, Anthropologie, Nike, The American Girl Store, William Sonoma and more, with restaurants like The Cheesecake Factory.

Eateries
When it's time to nom, here are my recommendations:
  • Joans on 3rd  Delicious sandwiches and salads for all!  A staple for any LA business :)
  • Real Food Daily   If you're the adventurous type (or vegan), hit up RFD.  I highly recommend their kale, brown rice and grilled tofu with peanut sauce 
  • Toast  A great brunch spot, be sure to get here early to avoid long waiting times 
  • Griddle Cafe  The best pancakes you will EVER EAT.  Long lines as well.  Try the Red Velvet panCAKES
  • Ketchup  If you're looking for that trendy LA place to eat, Ketchup is always fun.  You'll go blind after your meal (the lighting is all red), but they have amazing food and to-die-for sweet potatoe fries!  As seen on The Girls Next Door
  • Rainbow Bar and Grill  Love this place, mostly because it reminds me of good Texan cooking.  A historical landmark on the Sunset Strip, enjoy the mozzarella bites with your meal while watching the big screen.  Who knows, you may sit next to Axl Rose (I did)
  • 
    
    Barney's Beanery
    
    
  • Capitol City or Barney's Beanery  Capitol City is the where the official TCU watch party is going down if you can't make it to the game.  I'm positive we rented the whole thing out, but I figure it might as well be because when we played Utah the entire front portion of the establishment was all Horned Frogs.  It's a really cool sports bar that reminds me a lot of Dallas.  Barney's (in my opinion) is even BETTER because I haven't seen a place with so many TVs.  It's young and rowdy, just how I like it.  And their burgers are to-die
  • Gyu-Kaku
  • Gyu-Kaku  I am OBSESSED with this place.  It's right next to the SLS hotel on La Cienega.  It's this adorable little japanese restaurant.  Perfect for dinner, you cook your own meat on the grill!  Make sure you cook it well ;)  It's relatively cheap and is a fun experience for everyone
  • Sushi Roku  You can go to places like Katsuya and Geisha House and get decent service and pay three prices, but Sushi Roku is where it's at.  A West Hollywood favorite started by the owners of BOA steakhouse, the chefs all greet women by clapping or giving cat calls (would be obnoxious except they're all so adorable)!  It's upscale, but not crazy expensive either.  A great family restaurant of place to unwind with your friends
  • Red-O Mexican Cuisine  This is the gourmet version of Mexican food and it's awesome!  It features a fantastic Tequila bar.  Ask for the Scorpion Margarita. Mmmm!

Clubs and Bars
I'm sure plenty of you want to go out while you're in town.  Be forewarned, drinks are hard to get and expensive; guys, you'll definitely pay a cover, and tables are few and far between (if you can afford it).  Yet these are some of my favorite haunts around town.
  • Teddy's  On Hollywood Boulevard at the Roosevelt, Teddy's is probably my favorite club.  They always have a fantastic DJ, and the door seems to be pretty strict so it's never overcrowded.  You can dance and order a drink without a problem, and it seems like there is always a celebrity guest DJ in the house
  • Las Palmas  I hate that I'm even saying this but this is a sterotypical LA club, but I always have a blast at Las Palmas.  This is the place you read about DJ Pauly D and Lindsay Lohan (pre-rehab) heading to.  It opened on Cinco de Mayo this year, which is fitting considering it's a Mexican restaurant during the day.  It's on Las Palmas (who would have thought?) and Hollywood
  • Roger Room  It's small.  Real small.  But if you're into celebrity sightings, someone is always here.  Last time I saw Jason Segal and John Mayer
  • 
    Hemingway's Lounge
    
  • Hemingway's Lounge  Think The Library in downtown Fort Worth on steriods.  Books galore; a really shabby-chic type of joint with a smoking patio and lush reading chairs for comfort
  • La Descarga  A cuban club with delicious mojitos, a cigar lounge, a live band and some burlesque entertainment.  Coolest part?  You walk through a closet to get into the club! 


Everyone's been asking me about New Years.  Honestly, good luck!  I'd recommend finding a house party or an event in your hotel, because hailing a cab will be equivalent to finding the Bermuda Triangle.  I've heard of some parties, but pricewise they're equivalent to buying a Rose Bowl ticket.  A TCU-themed option is Frogbash at the Hard Rock Cafe at Citywalk, and of course there are a ton of clubs promoting parties, but beware of open bars -- they will definitely go over capacity (which means overcrowding and limited drinks).  If you can find something in Pasadena, even better!  Heck, you might spend your NYE on the curb because Pasadena allows occupants to start gathering and reserving space for the Rose Parade starting at 12 noon on the 31st!  Bring a poncho in that case because it's supposed to storm :) 

Dec 21, 2010

The Christmas Spirit

Read this last night before bed... touched my heart.  You never know what a person is going through and how your words and actions can affect another.

"Being cordial literally starts from the heart, as I see it.  It begins with the deep-seated belief that the other person is important, genuinely significant, deserving of my undivided attention, my unrivaled interest, if only for a few seconds.  Encouraged by such a belief, I am prompted to be sensitive to that person's feelings.  If he is uneasy and self-conscious, cordiality alerts me to put him at ease.  If she is shy, cordiality provides a relief.  If he is bored, cordiality stimulates and invigorates him.  If she is sad, cordiality brings cheer.  What a needed and necessary virtue it is!'

Put on love, which is the perfect bond of unity.  Colossians 3:14

Re: Conversations with Mom

And within five minutes of posting, here is Mom's response:

"Just for the record, I thought you were going to say you accidentally tooted in class....I didn't mean you'd do it on purpose....I do not think you are a Neanderthal. You do walk upright. :)))"

Conversations with Mom

Let me break down my mom for you.

Janet (Aka Mom, The Madre, Mommis) is quite the conversationalist... as you read in a previous post, she's well spoken and obviously has a kind, tender heart, especially when it comes to her kids.  But the woman, as loving as she is, is not one of those Moms that just sits and watches.  She walks into a room and you know she's there.  She gives huge hugs.  She laughs a lot.  She's very giving and she speaks her mind.

I mean, the woman made the cover of the NY Post with the headline "HE IS NOT A RAT."  If that can't initiate a conversation, I don't know what can.  Side note, I think a more fitting headline would have been "HELL HATH NO FURY like a sister scorned" because when it comes to her siblings, Mom's a little... what's the word?  Oh yeah, aggressive.  But that's why we all love Janet.

She's bad, she's bad, you know it -- yet emotional (we all place bets on when she'll cry during Christmas, my favorite has to have been the year she received her Sylvester Stallone jacket -- yes, one he owned -- and she broke down).  She's hilarious, something I've learned more and more over the years.  Erin and Jennifer can vouch with all the gossip we share in the kitchen.  Or that one time when she took me to wrap some kid I had a crush on's house.  OR (personal fav) when an ex-boyfriend from high school called me a whore (it was so wrong, so unsolicited and really ridiculous) on the phone, which of course put me in tears, and she grabbed the phone out of my hand to tell him to "shove it when the sun doesn't shine."

While she has threatened to call a few people up every now and again, she's grown, calmed down a little and won't be telling anyone where to shove it anytime soon (or ever).  Some would be mortified, like I was at the time, but now that I look back on it, I realized she wasn't totally out of line for saying that to him.  I remember Erin almost peeing herself laughing when these shenanigans went on, which of course made me laugh, and afterwards she told my mom that she was "awesome" and gave her a high five.  "I would have done the same thing," said Erin.

In the words of Taylor Swift, "If guys don't want me to write bad songs about them, they shouldn't do bad things."  Guys, if you don't want to be told where to shove it, maybe you should think before you  call someone who wasn't even your girlfriend at that point a whore for not wanting to date you and wanting to date someone else :)

Needless to say, Mom is always cracking me up on the phone.  Here are a few of tonight's convos.

Janet, Miss Johnson if you're nasty
Tonight, regarding my Christmas presents from my aunt and uncle:

Janet:  "We just got back with the gifts from Rog and Deb's.  There is a small box here under the tree that I think is for your birthday from them."  
Moi:  "A jewelry box?"
Janet:  "I think.  Actually, yes, the bow says the designer's name on it so I know it is."  
Moi:  "Is it Tiffany?"
JJ: "No.  You'll never be able to guess."
KJ:  "Well you're right about that because I don't know jewelry designers very well."
JJ:  "Don't I know that." 
(trying to be cute)
KJ: "All I really need is my Mom and my Dad and WUB!!!"
JJ: "Well, you have a Mom, you have a Dad... not sure about the love part..."


Explaining to her that her gift from me is not something she asked for, but she will love it regardless:

KJ: "Now Mom, this gift I got you... it's awesome.  But it wasn't something you asked for, so..."
JJ: "I hope you didn't spend a lot of money on it."
KJ:  "I didn't.  But it's great, and I want you to know some of the gifts you did ask for are being saved for your birthday.  So don't be bent out of shape if you didn't get exactly what you asked for on Christmas."
JJ: "Well I asked you to buy me a big honking piece of jewelry, so if you didn't get me that I'm going to be pissed."  


(She was kidding.. or was she?)

While trying to explain to her how awkward it was when I got hit on at the gym:

KJ: "Hilarity ensued at the gym today!"
JJ:  "Why?"
KJ: "So I did step class since I hadn't in awhile, and then after that we did a mix of pilates and yoga and --"
JJ: "Kirbie, did you toot?!"
KJ:  "What?"
JJ: "I thought you were going to say you tooted in class."

Uh, thanks Mom?  I am a lady, not a neanderthal as I can only presume that you think I am!!!!

The Digital Nativity Scene

This is pretty radical.




... and reminded me of these posts!

If Historical Events had statuses
If Historical Events had statuses, Part II

Social Media: Know what's up


I've been getting several questions as of late regarding how to start a blog and how to promote it, which is quite flattering considering this horse and pony show of a blog is anything but mainstream, professional or "good" in any sense.  I am not a professional writer but I do have some journalism background, so I figure I'd give some helpful tips I've learned after almost two years in the blog world. 

Hopefully this post will help you when it comes down to the basics:


The Blog
  • Start with a theme.  Doesn't matter if it changes later, just stick to what you start with for the most part.  Don't go changing it 700 times.  This blog started as 'Kirbie Needs a Job,' but since most of it was me giving my two cents about celebrities and entertainment, I changed it.  Not to mention it was a self-fulfilling prophecy because I ended up moving to Hollywood a few months later.
  • Be wise when you choose your domain.  I'm using Blogger, and at risk of being shut down by the Blogger gods, I kind of wish I had started with Wordpress and just paid the extra money to get all the bells and whistles.  Wordpress is much easier to edit and looks cleaner than these Blogger templates.  Also, I'd recommend Tumblr (they have more of a Mac-retro-hipster feel).
  • DO put down the money to buy a domain.  Whether it's KirbieJohnson.com or KirbieGoestoHollywood.com, pay the $10/year (or whatever) and make that shiz legit, especially if you want the site to be taken seriously and not just as a "blog."

Content
  • Write what you know.  I might not have a degree in entertainment, but I know who is doing what, when and where; I also know every agent, manager, and publicist (or know 'of' them, rather), their celebrity client and all of their social activities (further, I've always been the one my friends go to for what's going on in Hollywood).  So when I write about this stuff, I know what I'm talking about.  Same with beauty, I've worked at four different spas and salons as a manager and I have a lot of useful information when it comes to beauty trends and what not.  I'm a stylist on the side, which is where the fashion aspect comes in, and my degrees in Advertising/PR and Business has allowed me to properly promote this thing and promote other causes I support.  Lastly, lest we forget I am a woman, so when I'm writing about why men should do something or not do something, they all listen closely (because I am a woman, hear me roar).
    • However, it's important to focus your blog.  Writing about relationships on a sports blog doesn't mesh, however since my blog is lifestyle oriented with hopes of being turned into a full-fleged site, it works.
  • What I'm trying to say is make it known as to why you should be believed or read in the first place.  I've had people tell me they had no idea about my beauty background, but because my skin looks so nice they go out and buy all the crap I'm hocking on this site.  Another person put it, "I don't really care what you specialize in, I like how you write, and I feel like you're my friend, not a writer I barely know."  First off, thanks, that means a lot!  I write like I'm talking to my friends, not strangers, which is why most of this blog is written in first person and includes as lot of persosnal antecdotes. 
  • Brand yourself. What makes you different?  Why should people read what you have to say?  This blog is different than most because everyone reads "Kirbie Goes to Hollywood" and thinks it's a gossip blog, but really it's a lifestyle site for us 20-somethings who have no idea what we're doing with our lives.  We like to shop, we like the internet, we like entertainment and we need some spirituality to get us through all these "Am I eating ramen noodles this week" or "What is my place is this world?" shenanigans.  Mostly, we like to know we're not alone in all of these things.

Promotion
  • I initially started promoting my blog on Facebook, which always gets me the most views.  Last year, when I did my first holiday guide, I set aside $100.00 and did Facebook ads, which was perfect because it targeted men who were searching the internet for gifts (gotta love ad words).  Now, I utilize Twitter and thanks to some awesome bloggers, I'm on their blog roll, which sends me new readers almost daily  (I'm getting mine up soon).  I also wrote a post earlier this year about Vajazzling when Jennifer Love Hewitt talked about it on George Lopez, and the creator of the spa service, Completely Bare Spa, found my post and linked it to their homepage.  Surprisingly, people who search "bedazzle my vagina" get sent directly to my blog (LOL factor), and it has generated a ton of traffic and returning visitors.
  • Also, a good friend of mine and uber-publicist Michelle told me I needed to start tagging my posts with Google, Bing, Yahoo, Twitter and Facebook, along with key words like "fashion", "style," "gifts," "Justin Timberlake," (I had to) etc.  so when people Google or Bing these items, my blogs will come up in search results.  I did this for a post entitled, "Heart racing in my skin tight jeans be your teenage dream tonight," a la Katy Perry lyrics; besides "Kirbie Goes To Hollywood" and "Bedazzle my vagina," this is another most-searched phrased that directs readers straight to my blog.
  • LINK.  Link like there's no tomorrow.  Other sites follow who links them, and incorporating other sites on your own will help to increase readership.
  • Follow other blogs and comment!  Making friends in the blogosphere increases the chances of other bloggers promoting yours!  Who would have thought?

Social Media Etiquette

Mama knows best: mind your manners!  This goes a long way not just in the game of life, but also in your online life.  Be polite, makes friends, and don't overindulge.
  • DO NOT, I repeat, DO NOT be that crazy person on Facebook and Twitter telling everyone to "read your blog" at least five times a day.  That is obnoxious.  I find when I post on Facebook around 10 AM CST (8:00 AM for me), I get the most hits throughout the day because a) a lot of people who read this blog tend to be on Facebook at 10:00 AM and b) when it gets a lot of hits, it propels it into Facebook's "Top News" on newsfeed, so later in the day people who missed it can catch up. 
  • Twitter is another situation where less is more.  Post once in the AM and then once in the PM.  Magazines get it right when they Tweet their posts because they include a link, a catchy one-liner and then later on in the week they'll promote the same post again.  It's effective because they're not overloading readers with too much self-promotion.
  • Be polite, not forceful.  If people want to read your blog, they will.  Don't get aggressive and start posting on people's walls links to your posts.  It's desperate and nobody wants to read a desperate person's blog.  Post on your own status and then let the blogging gods work their magic. If you have anything interesting to say, people will read.
  • I love when people start following me on Twitter claiming to be the King/Queen of social media, and when I go to their site it barley has any content/zero posts.  You're doing nothing but shooting yourself in the foot when you run around sites telling people to read your blog and you have nothing to show for it.  Generate some content, work on a decent layout, make some blog friends and then start promoting.  If you're first starting out, this can be hard, but either really hype up your first post (and make it fanstastic) or wait until you've gotten a few good ones out of your before soliciting people to read a bunch of boring garbage.  If I go to a site that I've been asked to read and there's only one post and they're following 7,000 people on Twitter and only have 30 followers, I've immediately lost interest.  What makes this person interesting?  Why am I reading this?  Why should I believe what they say?  All things that factor into how you gain and lose readers.

That's it for now.  Again, I'm not a guru in this field, but I've learned a lot in a short amount of time and all of these things can only help you expand and grow!

Letters from Mom

Upon reading my paragraph about how my arms and fingers are too long, here's what Janet had to say:

"Dear Little Magnum Opus,

Here is the explanation for your long arms and fingers. We, your Mother's side of the family, all have long arms and fingers. So heredity plays a part in that.

Second, God gave you those arms so you could embrace all the people you love, give the most wonderful hugs to people who need them. So they could feel the power of what a hug can do for your soul. :) We do a lot of that, don't we? :)

God also gave you your long fingers for a few reasons. First, long fingers enable a piano player to span the keys and play beautifully. Your fingers enable you to write beautifully and express yourself. Similar to playing music, only with words. He gave you those fingers to point others His way, though your spirituality.
And one other perfect reason....so that when he blesses you with a husband and partner in life, your wedding rings will look beautiful on those long fingers!

So that's the question solved! No need for paranoia my Angel, you are perfect and beautiful, just the way God made you! :) Now hurry home and hug me!!!

Love, Mommis"

Gotta love JJ, the woman has called me her Magnum Opus (a.k.a. "Greatest Work" from Charlotte's Web) since I was born.  Thanks for the reassurance, Mom.  By the way, I have three rings on my fingers currently, no need for a husband to show off a nice ring or two. :)

Dec 20, 2010

Men:

Please,

Think --->  Speak.

We'd appreciate it,

The Female Population

Couples looks for the New Year

Whether you're single or taken, more than likely you'll be trying to find a date for the New Year.  (My date is going to be six of my nearest and dearest beautiful friends, unless I find a potential between now and then). 

What's more important than finding a date?  Figuring out what to wear!  Ahh!  My mom and I got into a tiff last year because we spent four days looking for a dress for me to wear to this New Years' party... apparently I am too picky and she isn't patient :)  I always have this "vision" that can never be fulfilled -- last year it was gold and sparkly vision and I couldn't find anything like that under $300.  Woof.  I ended up with this black number, which was simple and effective (couldn't see any beverage mishaps on it). 


Clearly I was in prime form.  (Writer's note:  I don't know how I got such long arms.  Mom? Dad? Anyone?  My wingspan is that of a bald eagle, I am incredibly insecure about how long my arms and fingers are.  I'm convinced they're a gift in one way or another.  Is it normal for one's arms to be half of their body length?!!  Obviously I'm a little paranoid about this issue.  Carry on.) 

Short story:  this shindig I attended last NYE was an open bar, and since everyone was cramming the bars and ordering eight drinks at a time, I took it upon myself to use my skills of stealth and "borrowed" (a.k.a took) a bottle of SKYY and a few mixers (necessary for sure).  We had a pretty great rest of the night after that.  By the way to everyone -- you're welcome. :)

Back to the point: I have stopped "envisioning" my attire for New Year's Eve because I'm always seriously let down and it's much easier to just find a frock that looks good for my body and be done, not to get all fancy and try to make something work when it clearly does not.  Ladies, I know you can feel me: I have a booty but a smaller waist, so finding outfits that adhere correctly are always few and far between, at least for what I'm willing to spend.  Why are all the clothes that I love and fit me like a glove all designer?  I must have good taste.  I CAN'T HELP IT if God made me the way I am (right?)!  Anyway, if you have the same condition, PLEASE, listen closely: don't waste your time thinking you're going to end up in a Taylor Swift outfit, girlfriend had a "boyish" figure and we're anything but that (saying that in the best way possible). 

So, as I was dabbling around on ShopStyle, I got some inspiration for some New Years looks. 

Inspiration:  Bill and Giuliana Rancic
I'll say it before and I'll say it again, "I'm just a Giuliana looking for her Bill."  Not necessarily looking persay, but you get the point.  Bill's a major hottie and G has great fashion sense, so putting them together it's hard not to stare.


Pairing a gray suit with a bright colored dress is sure to turn heads, especially since most guys wear black suits around the holidays.  I love this look that Bill & G wore to the Race to Erase MS event.  Gray stands out and matches with bright colors the ladies love, like turquoise, lavender, rose, or any other color from the pastel pallette.



This single button suit in platinum by Emporio Armani has a nice sheen, which dresses things up a little for the holidays.  That works out perfectly if your date happens to choose a sparkly number like MorningStar dress by French Connection or the bold green dress by Teeze Me.  Ladies, color coordinate with your man by matching your jewelry and shoes with his suit -- I love the suede platform pump by Shoebox. 


This is a more casual version of the gray suit.  Looks great with this red or purple ensemble; mix it up with an open toe boot and jewelry or make a statement in the Badgley Mischka Kiss Kiss pump.

Inspiration:  Michael Buble and fiance Luisana Lopilato
Mr. Buble defines the term gentleman, always tucked away in a nice black suit.  His beautiful Argentinian fiance, Luisana, looks effortless and HOT in this black, lowcut minidress.  Then again, she's hot in general... doesn't matter what she's wearing.



Love how the Preen long-stretch jersey gown is cut to flatter any figure, not to mention since it's jersey it will be comfortable.  The draping on the Paul and Joe Rita crepe dress is also universally flattering and accentuates your assets in the front and back.  Match it with a simple gold necklace.  Guys, Hugo Boss makes some great suits and you can't ever go wrong with a skinny tie.

Here's another style with two of my favs, Nicole and Joel, love them both... Nicole is amazing on way too many levels and Joel has to be a saint to put up with all that.  Anyway, Joel's all-black-everything-minus-the-tie is great, but I encourage you men to keep it classy and stick with neutrals and not go crazy and throw in a purple or a red (unless you're celebrating the Rose Bowl, in which case GO FOR IT).  By the way, I refuse to spend $250 on a single ticket for myself to the game so I'm going to need one of my handy readers to get me a slick hook up... like, now.  Please?  Even if it's a super awesome scalper that isn't an undercover cop that you can refer me to, I'd really appreciate that... I don't want to be arrested for the first time ever on a day of joy and celebration.


I have no idea what Nicole is wearing but her ta-tas look amazing (she's probably pregnant in this photo) and if there's one thing that's important for New Years, it's that your lady lumps look good.  There's really no excuse for them to not.   Bust out a push up bra, buy one of those Nu-Bras that adds a size or downplay them if they're huge -- no matter what you do, just make sure you feel so fine that you'd be okay if it was the last outfit you ever wore (or not, I don't care either way, but you'll feel so much better about yourself if you get all dolled up on this special overrated night).  Guys, this might strike you as bizarre that I would actually write this but you know you will be giving me a high five later.   

And just for kicks, here's Nicole looking fabulous.  Actually, I think I'm most attracted to this photo because of her retro eye make-up and the fact that she's solo.  Long sleeve dresses are a weak spot for me, if I see one I can't help but to buy it.  Show off the legs, keep the arms warm.  Boom.




Any of these dresses will do just fine, depending on where you're headed for the night.  Yes, they're expensive, but I'm sure you can find alternative styles elsewhere (this blog is always for inspiration)!  And Rent the Runway is great if you want a designer dress for one night and nothing more.

Also, can I just say it doesn't matter what you do for NYE?  As long as you are with good friends or family and you're SAFE, that's all that matters.  My worst New Year's have been the ones where I'm shilling out a ton of money for four hours of complete debauchery, except no debauchery can be had because everyone else is too busy crowding the bar (circa 2007).  The best have always been at house parties or events where every single one of my friends was there, and luckily, I have a batch of friends coming in for this festive football occasion.  So I'm all kinds of stoked.  Be safe, take a cab, or stay home... whatever you do, celebrate with those you love!

Happy shopping and enjoy your New Year!  GO FROGS! 


Dec 19, 2010

Post 700: I am not what I thought I was...


In LA, everyone wants to know what your sign is.  According to reports, I am a Capricorn, since my birthday is December 27th.   However, I learned in Astronomy class senior year of college (the only interesting thing I got from that whole headache of a credit) that I am in fact NOT a Capricorn.  Based on how the planets were aligned on my date of birth, I am actually a Sagittarius.

I have no idea how everyone got everything  all mixed up, but if you visit this link you'll see that you're probably not the sign you've grown up to believe you are.  I meddled in astrology to "find" myself when I was younger so that I had something I could believe I was (as in traits).  Growing up, you want something to semi-define you, so being a Capricorn meant a whole group of things... yet none of them described me.

My friend Taryn was even said a few weeks ago, "Girl, you are so NOT a Capricorn.  I think you're a Sagittarius!"  She is one herself -- actually, she's not, but I'll geti nto that in a minute.

Anyway, just to compare, here are my traits according to if I was a Capricorn:






Practical and prudent  -- This is hilarious.  I am not practical, I'm a serial dreamer and believe anything can happen.  (Maybe that's why I'm attracted to practical people?)
Ambitious and disciplined --
Agreeable
Patient and careful --
Uh I'm so impatient... I have to work on this every day.
Humorous and reserved  --
Again, laughable.  Reserved?  Give me a break.  Humorous?  Maybe. :)

On the dark side....
Pessimistic and fatalistic  --  Both of these terms scare me.
Miserly and grudging --
No.


The sign Capricorn is one of the most stable and (mostly) serious of the zodiacal types. These independent, rocklike characters have many sterling qualities. They are normally confident, strong willed and calm. These hardworking, unemotional, shrewd, practical, responsible, persevering, and cautious to the extreme persons, are capable of persisting for as long as is necessary to accomplish a goal they have set for themselves.


Independent?  Yes.  Rocklike?  No. No. No.  Confident?  Most of the time.  Strong willed for sure. Calm?  CALM?  Most consider me... not calm. (Outgoing?)  Hardworking (yes), Unemotional (definitely not), shrewd (debatable) -- the rest of the stuff is on point minus practical.


All of the ambitious and work stuff is true; the swing in emotions is not, neither is the personal relationships section.  "They are somewhat self-centered but not excessively so, wary and cautious around people they do not know very well, preferring not to meddle with others and in turn not to allow interference with themselves, thus they tend to attract people who do not understand them."  Uh, negative.


Not to mention it says ideal jobs for me are economists, financiers, bankers, speculators, contractors, managers and real estate brokers, which is quite hysterical.  I wouldn't be caught dead in any of those positions (I have no interest in them and would not be good at them). 


And the Sagittarius lowdown:

Optimistic and freedom-loving  (Yes.)
Jovial and good-humored  
(Just ask my familia about this one)
Honest and straightforward
(If we have a problem, you'll know about it)
Intellectual and philosophical
(Can't you tell by this blog? haha)


On the dark side....
Blindly optimistic and careless (This can interfere badly sometimes)
Irresponsible and superficial
(I like nice things, but superficial is the last thing I ever want to be -- and I'm responsible to fault, if that's possible)
Tactless and restless  
(Eh? I don't really know about these)


Preach: 
 They are basically ambitious and optimistic, and continue to be so even when their hopes are dashed. Their strongly idealistic natures can also suffer many disappointments without being affected. They are honorable, honest, trustworthy, truthful, generous and sincere, with a passion for justice. They are usually on the side of the underdog in society they will fight for any cause they believe to be just, and are prepared to be rebellious. They balance loyalty with independence.

Doubtful: "Sagittarians are modest", "Promiscuous".  

All the professional stuff is on target.




So, while each sign has some traits that relate and some that don't, Sagittarius, my true sign, is more on target with my goals, aspirations and what not.



What most people don't know is that there was a 13th sign that was eliminated for whatever reason (13 was an unlucky number back then).  This sign was what most people whom consider themselves a Sagittarius, born November 23rd- December 21st, fall under: Ophiuchus, born November 29th - December 17th.

Click here to find your real sign with the birthday sky application.

What's your real sign according to your birth date?  Do you relate to it more than what you've been thinking you were  all these years?  

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