Monday, October 10, 2011

Celebrity thin

As I'm working on getting "fit" and ready to run a 5k by next fall (maybe next spring), I've been researching a lot of healthy diets (as in to get healthy, not thin), and exercise blogs. What I've come up with A LOT of times is sickly celebrity thin photographs and how to get like that.

At one point in my adult life, I was 87 lbs. At that time I was 5'5" tall. Yes, I've shrunk since then, but I'm hoping that yoga gives me my height back. LOL. I wore children's clothes. I was smaller than the adult 00.

I went to a wedding back in 2001, and I was up to 92 lbs. The photographs that were taken of me, like the one below, show me in a dress that was a size 2 and had been taken in by an inch or two. It tells me that the celebrities today are "sickly thin" like I was, although mine was due to a chronic illness and not starving myself.

I don't ever want to look like that again! I want to have muscle and curves (I don't have many, but I want to maximize what I have by working out). If you want to look like the girls below, you will have to starve yourself, you will be unhealthy, and truly, the man in your life will NOT think it's pretty! Love your body, get fit, but be happy with what God gave you! :)

Thursday, September 22, 2011

The Truth about Lung Transplantation

Most of those who are at end-stage lung disease hear this statement when considering lung transplantation as an option: "You are trading one illness for another". Ok yeah, that's true, but it is not a reason to say no to transplant.

I do have the greatest respect for my friends who decide that transplant isn't right for them though. I recently had a young Cystic Fibrosis friend pass away, because her center turned her down for transplant, and she said she didn't have the means to travel to another center. In my heart, I think she was just scared, and she didn't want to go through the transplant process. That is very understandable, since it is definitely a scary surgery/recovery.

When I was being evaluated for a transplant, and undergoing the treatments necessary to get me as healthy as could be for a lung transplant, I knew no one who had gone through the surgery. Even though we should be thankful for all of the online support groups now, and the forums, and facebook for giving us a pretty good picture of what lung transplant surgery looks like, I still am kind of thankful that I knew nothing about the process at the time. I did meet two young women after I had been evaluated and accepted into Duke's lung transplant program who had been through lung transplantation. One had done extremely well, and the other was struggling, even after almost a year post-transplant. I knew it was the end of my life with my old lungs. There was no question that I would go through the surgery. I went in with a positive attitude and also with faith that no matter the outcome, I would be going home... either to my family or to heaven!!! It got me through, and it was the only reason I was able to have peace through it all.

Fast forward almost 10 years. I see the reality of those who have had lung transplants. The lungs are the single most solid organ that is more likely to be rejected by your body than any other. Even though I do know someone who is 18 years out of double lung transplant, I don't know many who are more than 10 years out. It's a reality. It's definitely not something we obsess over or focus on, but it is reality. Again, that is why I support the Lung Transplant Foundation, who's main goal is to fund research by doctors like Scott Palmer at Duke, who continue to find ways to combat chronic rejection in those who've had lung transplants.

As most of my friends know, I had to have a kidney transplant 7 years after my double lung/living lobar transplant. This will happen to about 15% of those who've had lung transplants due to the damage the anti-rejection meds do to the kidneys. That is only one of the possible complications that come with lung transplantation. The risk of cancer is much greater in those who've had transplants, because the anti-rejection meds decrease your immunity. I've had several friends survive these cancers, several friends who are still fighting, and several friends who unfortunately lost their battle to cancer after successfully coming through a transplant.

I have squamous cell carcinoma on my scalp. It is spreading, and even though I have treated it with topical medication and cryotherapy, I am getting new patches almost every few weeks. If surgery is the only final option, I'm not sure how much scalp I will have left. I'm so thankful that it hasn't gone beyond the superficial layer and that I have a great dermatologist, but this is just a reality of post-transplantation for a lot of folks.

When looking for a center to be transplanted at, I want to remind all of my end-stage lung disease friends to look for a center that cares more about getting you 10 years out than getting you 2!!! I cannot stress this enough. Most transplant centers today can get you off the table and through recovery. MOST centers today cannot or rather will not treat chronic rejection (an eventuality with those who've had lung transplants) aggressively. Ask your center what they do for you if you are suspected of having Bronchiolitis Obliterans (chronic rejection). If they say "we just put you on Azithromycin 3 times a week), leave immediately and find yourself another center. It's unacceptable! Getting you off the table isn't enough. I promise when you get 10 years out, you will want more and more and more. Am I being selfish? Maybe.. since so many don't even get the chance of a second life, but I'm also being realistic and telling you how you will feel!

I am thankful for my 10 years (this November) with my new lobes. I am so beyond thankful to my mom and uncle for their donation (my mom's twice donation). But I want more time. I want to see my daughter grow up and graduate and go to college and get married and have children. I am selfish. I want time. I beg all of you to be as selfish as I am.

Friday, August 5, 2011

Lungapalooza 2011

Why the organization Lung Transplant Foundation means so much to me:

This organization means so much to me for many reasons. The biggest reason is that my doctor, who stepped down from the medical director's position of the lung transplant program at Duke to put his main focus on research, truly does care for his patients. He is pouring everything he has into finding ways to prolong the lives of his "older" transplant patients, i.e. those 5+ years out from transplant.

The Lung Transplant Foundation was started by a fellow Duke lung transplantee, and although the entire board of directors is somehow affiliated with Duke or the area, the organization's goal is to branch out to other medical facilities to fund research there that focuses on extending the lives of lung transplant patients. Research at ANY center can benefit lung transplant recipients from around the world!

Because the lungs are the only transplanted organ that is exposed to our outside environment, they are susceptible to pollutants in the air, and this is just one more reason the lungs tend to reject quicker than any other transplantable solid organ in the body. Eventually, those of us who've had lung transplants will get chronic rejection in our lungs (scarring from our body's defense system attacking the foreign organs). My doctor's research focuses mainly on finding treatments to slow this down, and hopefully one day find a cure for it. This foundation is the only one of its kind, and with the funds the organization hopes to receive through awareness/fundraising, they hope to expand it, so that many research hospitals throughout the states can have grants to further their work.

All of us who get transplants want those few extra years to spend with our families and live our lives. We are told from the beginning that a transplant isn't a cure, it's just an extension of life. We all think at the beginning that getting another 5 years to live will be satisfactory. Although, it is wonderful to have those extra years, after you get there, you want more. Of course I am to the point of one day hoping to see my grandchildren born. I hope with the LTF's fundraising, and with doctors like Scott Palmer, Scientific Director at Duke, I and so many others like me, can look forward to a normal life expectancy after lung transplant.

Please sponsor me in the Lungapalooza 2011: A Walk for Breath which benefits Lung Transplant Foundation. You can go here to sponsor me in the walk, and you can read all about Lung Transplant Foundation here.

Thank you for helping save the lives of me and of many of my closest friends! XO

Thursday, July 7, 2011

My Anaphylaxis

The very first night that I was administered IV Vancomycin, I got "Redman's Syndrome" about 30 minutes into the infusion. The infusion was stopped for awhile, and I was administered 25 mg IV Benadryl. I did fine with the rest of the dose at a very slow pace, running over 5 hours. The next night, I was pre-medicated with 25 mg of IV Benadryl, and the Vancomycin was set to run over 3 hours. After half of the infusion was given, I developed the symptoms again and was given another 25 mg of IV Benadryl. The rate was slowed, and I was able to finish the dose.

The third night that I received Vancomycin I was also pre-medicated with 25 mg of IV Benadryl. It was set to run over 4 hours per my request. Two hours into the infusion I was extremely nauseated and received IV Compazine. I had just had sinus surgery the day before and had been dealing with nausea ever since. Previously Zofran had been helping but, at this point, I needed something different. About 40 minutes after the IV Compazine was given, I started my anaphylactic reaction.

I had been having a dry mouth for 2 days and a fruity, sweet taste in my mouth. My husband said that my breath had the faint smell of fruit on it. I was tested for ketosis, which was negative. About 20 minutes after the Compazine was given, I complained to my husband about having a metallic taste in my mouth. It also became extremely dry (no amount of water could moisturize my mouth).

About 20 minutes later, I told my husband that I felt dehydrated to the point of passing out. I then told him I was having a reaction. It was a strange feeling that I cannot completely explain. It just scared me so much! I started laying back on the hospital bed, and my husband pulled the code switch in my room. In about 10 to 20 seconds I developed a rash around my neck and thoracic region, front and back, and I had a handful of nurses around my bed.

I had burning and tightening in my chest and stiffness in my legs. My blood pressure spiked to 212/178, and I was in tachycardia. My pulse was about 113 at that point. I then started feeling burning in my throat, sides, and my muscles all over my body were micro-spasming. It was then that I felt my tongue begin to swell. I couldn't communicate very well to the nurses and resident, because my mouth was still extremely dry making it difficult to enunciate words. My neck was so swollen at this point, that it looked like I had two golf balls on both sides of my trachea.

I had a complete feeling of impending doom!

During this time, my nurses had begun administering IV Benadryl and IV epinephrine. I began to feel some relief, and then I would be flooded with symptoms again, which gave them reason to continue this treatment for awhile. After pharmacy brought up Solu-medrol, I was given a bolus and then a drip of it. I was better at this point, but I couldn't relax because of my panic. They decided to give me Ativan to help me relax, which helped tremendously with my symptoms. My daughter was by my side, and did so well, even checking my b.p. regularly and helping out the nurses. She's such a tough girl, and stayed with me the entire night in the hospital so she could watch over me. :)

The Ativan was given about an hour and a half into my reaction. I remained symptom-free for about 2 1/2 more hours, when all of the treatment meds starting getting out of my system. I again started feeling burning and tightness in my chest and swelling of the tongue. I was given more IV Benadryl and another Ativan at this time. That was my very last reaction.

At this point, my allergist is leaning more towards the IV Compazine as being the culprit, but they have listed both Vancomycin and Compazine as an allergy on my allergy list. They will definitely desensitize me to IV Vancomycin if I ever need it again, and I will never be given IV Compazine again.

I wanted to share this with mainly my CF friends in hopes that if you ever feel any symptom "to the extreme", you will call for help immediately and recognize that it isn't normal. I am so thankful that I had my nursing staff on my case in a matter of seconds, and I'm so thankful I wasn't home when this reaction started. I also will carry an Epi-pen with me everywhere I go now. No more taking chances for me. :)

Monday, February 28, 2011

Oscar Fashion 2011

I was pretty much blown away by the red carpet fashion this year. SO blown away, that it was hard for me to pick 5 worst dresses. There were quite a few that were mediocre, 3 that were horrible, but the rest of the looks were glamorous and Oscar-worthy! There were many wives/significant others of celebrities who looked amazing, but I only included the stars in my reviews.

Usually, I try and review every red carpet look, but I have decided this year, to only pick my top 5 best and worst dressed. All photos by Yahoo Movies.

Just like in my previous reviews, I look at the entire "package" and not just the dress. I think that a hairstyle, make-up, and accessories play into how a celebrity appears on the red carpet as much as her dress does. And as always, I stay away from other reviews before writing mine.

There were many red dresses last night. Honestly, I was impressed with only one of them, and that person is in my top 5 best dressed list below. None of them made my worst dressed list, but were in the mediocre category in my opinion.

As far as the winners at the awards show, the only winner I was disappointed with was for best supporting actress. Beyond a shadow of a doubt, I think that Helena Bonham Carter should have won that award for her portrayal of Queen Elizabeth in "The King's Speech".

Ok, onto my 5 best dresses. I am starting with my number five choice and counting down to my number one:

Reese Witherspoon certainly looks like she stepped out of the 1960's with this look. As simple as this dress was, it was a stunner! Channeling Bridget Bardot (or Bardie if you want to go that far) with her voluminous, sexy hairstyle, she really did stand out on the red carpet. This look could have been a nightmare had she paired the big hair with a busy dress, but since she kept the dress elegant and simple with just the perfect amount of color contrast, she is a winner in my book! Oh and I must mention her gorgeous emerald earrings, which only added to her overall loveliness.

Halle Berry, your beauty never ceases to amaze me. From head to toe, she rocked this look! I prefer Halle with short hair, and last night proved that it could never look better. Her cropped, spiky hair was flawless! She needs to keep her make up artist on speed dial. Those smoldering, smoky eyes were gorgeous! Her nude dress went perfectly with her skin tone. There is nothing bad I can say about her strapless, crystal and tulle gown. She was so elegant, that I think this may be her best look ever.

Calvin Klein rarely disappoints. Jennifer Lawrence has the perfect figure for this red, scoop necked gown. Some may say that it is too simple of the Oscar red carpet, but less is most certainly sometimes best. Her long, flowing blonde hair, eye-popping make up, and minimal accessories complete this simple, but yet very glamorous look.

Wow Mila Kunis! Casey and I both gasped when we saw her on the red carpet. This lace and chiffon gown was very unique and very flattering to Mila's petite frame. Periwinkle has always been one of my favorite colors (it was my favorite crayon growing up). I adored her clutch and her accessories, and I thought that her wavy up-do was very elegant. She is definitely one to watch on future red carpets. I haven't seen a bad look on her yet, and this is only the beginning for the beautiful, bright young star.

Can you believe, after all of the bad reviews that I have given Amy Adams in the past, that she is my number 1 best dressed this year? Maybe she's been reading my reviews.. ha! Let's start with the wavy, side-swept hair. It is feminine, elegant, and the perfect color red you could ask for. Her blue, jewel-encrusted, capped sleeve gown went perfectly with her skin tone and red hair. It accentuated her amazing figure! I loved the fact that she paired this blue gown with emerald jewelry. It was a lovely look all the way around. Thank you Amy for finally hiring the right stylist!

And now... my picks for the worst dressed. Again, I'll end with my choice for number one worst look:

Nicole, Nicole, Nicole. You never cease to amaze me with your colorless red carpet looks. When you decide to wear color to an awards show, I think that the heavens will rejoice! You have such an amazing body, but yet you choose this hip-flaring, strapless nightmare. And what is going on with the metallic flower and leaf embellishments? I do however, like the necklace and the shoes, but unfortunately, that doesn't save you from my worst dressed list.

First of all, who is Florence Welch? Ok, she's a singer.. I'm just kidding. Anyway, for her first Oscar red carpet appearance, she definitely didn't hire a stylist. If Caroline Ingalls were to go to a ball, she would have worn this. She could have pulled off the color of this dress with her firey red hair (which by the way looked like she took scissors to right before she stepped out last night), but there is nothing good to say about this lace, ruffled, granny pajama gown.

I know exactly where Marisa Tomei found her gown. It's actually a bedskirt from one of her old comforter sets, and she is definitely into recycling! From the swimsuit-like straps and neckline, to her overboard tulle skirt, this dress just fails to impress me at all! Marisa's hairstyle was just ok, but I did find her earrings to be my favorite piece of jewelry last night!

It seems that Melissa Leo is also into recycling.... her grandmother's old doilies. In the running (and eventually winning) for the award of best supporting actress, she should have chosen an elegant gown that wasn't so busy. I wasn't impressed with the lines of the dress either. From the high neckline in the back, to the padded shoulders, to the odd-looking front slit, nothing about this gown was even remotely attractive. Her loose up-do is the only thing nice I have to say about this overall look.

Don't get me wrong here, Cate Blanchet is one of the most beautiful, talented actresses in Hollywood!!! Obviously though, she has not an ounce of style, and that is why she gets my number 1 worst dressed look of the night! What is going on with this alien-inspired nightmare of a gown? This lavender (or light blue?) gown with it's very odd embellishments appears to have been squirted with mustard on both shoulders. Do you think that Cate had indulged in a hot dog before stepping out on the red carpet? The accordion skirt was the only part of the gown that should have left the designer's workshop. From the neck up, she does impress. I'm just sorry that she doesn't pair that with an Oscar-worthy (not a Halloween-worthy) gown.

Honorable mentions (those who would have made my top 10 if I had reviewed that many) are Natalie Portman, Hailee Seinfeld, Mandy Moore, Hillary Swank, and Michelle Williams. They all looked lovely!!!

As always, I would love to hear your opinions. Agree, or disagree! Tell me your best and worst dressed celebs of the night! :)

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Cystic Fibrosis Awareness

This is for my non-Facebook, non-Twitter friends. I got purple highlights for Cystic Fibrosis awareness. Crazy but fun!!! XO

Monday, January 17, 2011

Golden Globe Fashion 2011

I'm back again with another fashion review. If you haven't seen my previous reviews, and would like to check them out, here they are: Oscar Fashion 2009, Golden Globe Fashion 2010, and Oscar Fashion 2010.

As I always stress, I DO stay away from other reviews before writing mine. I also take into account what the celebrity looks like onscreen as well as in pictures featured online. I also don't just give best or worst dressed based solely on the dress. I take into account the entire look, including make-up and hairstyle.

I have used's site to see red carpet dresses in the past, but the only thing I saw this year on their site was a link to the "best dressed". Of course Angelina was featured as their best dressed, but I didn't click on the link and look further. In the past, they have had a slideshow of all celebs in no particular order, and I could just skip the review part. Because of the way they featured them this year, I used OMG yahoo's site. This will actually make it easier for you to look at my reviews and each dress at the same time in a different window. I am going to review each celeb in the order they are featured in this slideshow. Follow along, and as always, I would LOVE to hear your opinions. Feel free to comment anonymously if you would like. :)

This year's GG awards featured a lot of neutral-colored dresses. I must say that some skin tones can glow in them, and some become easily washed out. It seems that ever since Jennifer Aniston wore this dress to the 2009 Oscars, metallic and neutral dresses have boomed on the red carpet.

It was unbelievably hard to pick this year's best dressed for me. There was so much glamour and so many great looks on the red carpet. I did actually narrow best dressed down to two though, but I will let you know in my reviews below, other celebrities who were also contenders for best dressed.

So here goes... these were my two picks for best dressed this year:

Emma Stone gives new meaning to the phrase "simply beautiful"! The actual color is a little darker peach than seen here in this picture. This truly says that sometimes less can be best. I love everything about her look, from her hair and make-up, to her accessories, and obviously the beautiful backless dress. Her soft up-do, subtle but stunning make-up, simple diamond drop earrings, and her bow ring are a perfect combination to her overall soft, sexy look. To me she screams "Hollywood glamour", and it just doesn't get much better than this.

This leads me to my tie for best dressed:

Catherine Zeta-Jones blew me away last night. The textured fabric of this dark green ballgown was a stunner onscreen and online. It accentuated her amazing figure and flawless skin. I like that she kept her hair down in the back since this was a strapless gown, and her chandelier earrings played perfectly into this look. Her make-up enhanced her lovely skin tone and her dramatic eye make-up gave her eyes just the right pop. Michael Douglas has a lovely woman for sure!!!

Let's talk about my pick for worst dressed:

Not that I expected anything great from Michelle Williams, but this takes the cake. Not only does the petite star look frumpy in this mess of a dress, but the plainness of her hair, and lack of accessories (that make it look like she is going to a barbeque instead of stepping on the red carpet at one of the biggest award shows of the year) only help this celeb look more like a plain jane than a star. The daisy print is obviously a nightmare, but even if the daisies were missing, this dress is ill-fitted and looks more like something made in a home economics class than in a designer's workroom. My advice to Michelle is to fire her stylist ASAP!

Remember, follow along here as I review each celebrity in the order they appear in the slideshow.

Angelina Jolie - Stunning! Definitely one of the contenders for my best dressed. She rarely disappoints on a red carpet. This sparkly, emerald green dress was a perfect color choice for her. I was glad to see her in a bright color, since we so often see her in black. Wide shoulders appear to be coming back in style, and this gown's lines did so much to accentuate Angelina's great figure. I love the waistline and the v-drop in the back. Her hair was a cascade of long mellow waves, and the color was brilliant. A+ for sure!

Scarlett Johansson - What? The Bride of Frankenstein meets Hollywood! You would think she would be trying to impress since she is newly divorced, but I cannot keep from thinking that she went out of her way to do the exact opposite. Not only are her skin and dress the same color, but her hairstyle should be reserved for Halloween only. Again... what?

Eva Longoria - I LOVE everything about this look except for the duct tape used to make cleavage. That part tends to make me think she used to be a pageant contestant. Other than that bit of a flaw, she looks stunning. She wears black as well as any Latino, and the lines of this dress accentuate that amazing figure!!! The gown is accessorized just perfectly on its own without needing accessories elsewhere. Eva's lovely up-do and neutral make-up complete this look!

Anne Hathaway - I do love this metallic, backless number! I do love the color on Anne! I do think that it shows off her figure nicely! Here are some things I DON'T like... even though 80's inspired shoulder pads are coming back, this dress takes it a little overboard. I also think that as young as Anne is, she should have gone with a sleeveless dress instead of long sleeves. Leave that look to Angelina! There is absolutely nothing spectacular about Anne's make-up, hairstyle, or boring clutch. She may as well be going out to lunch with those!!!

Jennifer Lopez - If my grandmother was going to get remarried, I would definitely choose this dress. Enough said!!

Olivia Wilde - Definitely another one of my contenders for best dressed. However, her choppy, severely straight hair (as evidenced by her onscreen capture more than online pictures), and cat-eye make-up, took her from Hollywood glamour to nightclub flair! The dress is to-die-for though!

Julianne Moore - There is no surprise when I see Julianne on the red carpet. She hasn't had a good look in way too many years to count. She always chooses the wrong dress, wrong fabric, wrong color, and boring hairstyle. This pink dress looks thrown together by an amateur seamstress, and as I always say, "Don't wear satin to an award show"! It never photographs well!

Halle Berry - Well, she looks good in black, right? That's the only good thing I can say about the lingerie inspired number she had on last night. Lingerie belongs in the bedroom, not on the red carpet. And what's up with the sheer train?

Christina Aguilera - There are very few gowns consisting of black lace over a neutral fabric that I have ever liked. Neither of these go with Christina's pale skin. Even though Christina is petite with awesome curves, this makes her look frumpy and waist-less. A bracelet or necklace would have also looked nice. Her hair is just blah!

Lea Michele - I'm not usually a ruffle person, as most of you know. I did however like the "idea" behind this dress. The pink color looks great on Lea, but the fabric used for this dress made the seams appear like they were sewed by a faulty sewing machine. I think this look could have gotten an A from me if a less stiff fabric had been used. I really liked her simple, but elegant jewelry and her nicely loose up-do.

Sandra Bullock - 60 year old Joan Jett in a beautiful crystal overlay gown. Hmmm... Nice accessories. Very bad make-up.

Helena Bonham Carter - Bizarre and unconventional pretty much sum Helena up, personality-wise and obviously dress-wise too. She didn't get my worst dressed, because if Helena would have been in something elegant and subtle, it just wouldn't be her. Yes, it's a crazy look she had last night, but it suits her perfectly.

Carrie Underwood - It seems that I've used this word to review Carrie before... BORING! There is nothing that stands out about her look last night. She is one color head-to-toe, and even though the gown fits her nicely, it doesn't give her a wow factor at all. The very minimal accessories and extremely boring hair just make this overall look even more blah!

Sofia Vergera - This girl rocks pretty much anything she wears. Even though this choice of dress wasn't the best she's ever had, she does rock it with her amazing skin-tone, figure, and presence. The color is beautiful, and the black belt accentuates her waist and curves. She completes her amazing look with loose wavy hair and her glamorous make-up and accessories.

Megan Fox - I love Megan's dress. It is very elegant and is embellished perfectly with crystals, and ribbon-like strips. The thing that kept Megan out of best dressed choices is the fact that her hair and make-up are way under-stated. She looks pale and her hair looks more wig-like than natural.

Natalie Portman - Pregnant or not, Natalie can always rock a dress. I loved the "idea" of this dress. The gown flows nicely over Natalie's pregnant frame, and the rose applique could have been great if had been a color much closer to the original dress. The fact that it is red and is paired with a red clutch and red shoes, take away from Natalie's overall look. Natalie's hair looks great from the front, but the back makes me want to question whether or not her new fiance chose to style it for her.

Jennifer Lawrence - The picture of her featured on OMG Yahoo does not show the full beauty of this dress. I am going to write this review based on what I saw onscreen. I loved the look!!! From the wide black straps to the Spanish-inspired skirt, this dress was amazing. I also like the black and white airbrushed look. Her heels were beautiful, and I loved her messy up-do.

Heidi Klum - Heidi usually fails to impress, and she made no exception last night. I'm not sure what was up with this draped, striped number that used all the left over material to bunch together a belt. Heidi's hair looked like it needed a good coloring, and her make-up looked like a Mary Kay consultant did it. Will she ever get a red carpet look right?

Jennifer Love Hewitt - I totally get this dress!!! Jennifer had an old satin comforter and sheet set that she needed recycling. The heavy neckline on this dress, cheap-looking jeweled waistline, and overdone skirt made Jennifer look like an overweight grandmother. Her piled-high hairdo just added to this overall major FAIL!

Julia Stiles - She actually looked stunning last night! From her loose, curly hair to her amazing mermaid dress, she was the epitome of Hollywood elegance.

Kyra Sedgwick - If I were to take the guts of a pumpkin and make them into a dress, this would be the result! Her jewelry reminds me of an Egyptian queen (and not in a good way), and her severely-parted up-do did nothing to enhance her facial features.

Claire Danes - Although I would have chosen a different color for this dress, I do love it, and I think the simplicity of it does a great job of not overpowering her small frame. The high neckline, cutaway shoulders, and accentuated waistline hung great on Claire's petite figure. I am not too thrilled about Claire's hairstyle or accessories. They both could have been a little bolder.

Kelly Osbourne - She has worked so hard to get fit! This look that she chose last night did nothing to show that! The one-shoulder, satin nightmare that she was wearing looked like a backdrop to a play featuring a lightening bolt prop! Her hair looked greasy and her make-up made her look way older than she is.

Jane Krakowski - This is how you do preggers on the red carpet! She was probably the most stunning expectant mother I have ever seen at an awards show. From her golden locks, bright chunky earrings, one-shoulder blue gown with lace accent, to her perfectly professional make-up job, Jane is a definite stunner!

Nicole Kidman - Why do I always feel like I repeat myself when I write a review about Nicole Kidman's red carpet look? Oh, it's because I do, and because she always chooses a flesh colored gown that goes horribly with her skin-tone. I would love to see the dress she wore last night in color! The one-shoulder gown was nothing spectacular, but if it were perhaps a bright red or green, accessorized with some chunky jewelry, and paired with an elegant up-do, it could definitely become a look to remember.

Jane Lynch - This dress just proves that there are good uses for recycled trash bags. She should get an A+ just for going green! Go Jane... once again, you have failed to impress!

Tilda Swinton - Not worthy of my review!

Leighton Meester - The picture of this dress does nothing to show the beauty of it. I really liked it onscreen! I think it would have been well suited on someone older than Leighton, but it did fit her frame nicely. Even though this is another neutral color, it did have some silver airbrush-like color added to it. I loved Leighton's chunky, silver platform heels, but wasn't impressed with her hairstyle or accessories.

Elisabeth Moss - Origami gone bad! This green dress with an accordion-like bust, and patched waistline and hips didn't flatter Elisabeth in the least. Accessories were blah, and her hair was more suited for shopping than the red carpet.

Annette Benning - She absolutely looked like a transvestite to me last night. The dress wasn't bad, but it would have been nicer in a bright color. Annette's hairstyle, lack of make-up and nerdy glasses were all a tad scary!

Julie Bowen - Once again, this overall look was better featured onscreen than online. I loved everything about it!!! The taupe dress did have quite a few ruffles, but they weren't overbearing on Julie's small frame. I loved the lines running through her dress, and it fit her figure so well. Julie's hair was simple and elegant, and her dramatic eyes made a statement on their own!

Sarah Hyland - This was a little too much dress for this petite star. I did like the embellishments on the dress and her lovely necklace, and the way the dress flows at the bottom is stunning. Sarah's soft bangs were a nice change from the severe choppy bangs we have been seeing lately.

Christina Hendricks - I usually love this redhead in red. Not so much last night! The dress was overbearing, even though Christina isn't petite, and she has some nice curves. The flower-like embellishment that extends up into Christina's hair makes it look like it's attacking her. I think she should stick with embellishments around her waist or on her hips. She should have had her hair up for such a dress as this.

Dianna Agron - ANOTHER contender for best dressed. Even though I tend to steer clear of those who seem to be the same color from head to toe, she pulled it off beautifully! Her neutral dress had a shimmer to it that went great with her accessories... especially her royal-like necklace!!! Her loose, wavy, Hollywood hair topped it all off nicely!

Mila Kunis - Yet another contender for my best dressed! Once again, we had a beautiful, bold green gown on the red carpet last night. I loved the heavy fabric, the one-shoulder poof, and the waist wraps on this dress. It fit her perfectly! Her up-do was old Hollywood glam! She is definitely on her way to being a big star, and last night's look proved it.

January Jones - Once again, she proves that Ashton Kutcher did the right thing when he dumped her years ago! Does she ever look in the mirror before stepping out on the red carpet? The bandage-like dress looked like it was on backwards, and her old-hollywood hairstyle would have been better suited on someone with more grace and style.

Amy Adams - I was truly hoping she would get it right this year. Her dress choices always overpower her... even when she was expecting! This odd blue number, with some child-like cutouts on the embellishments, is all wrong. Amy's hair also, once again, fails to impress.

Mila Jovovich - The overall silhouette of this dress is stunning! When you get down to the details... not so much! There is nothing spectacular about any part of this dress. Mila's side-swept hair is as boring as the rest of her.

Tina Fey - I must say that this dress looked much better onscreen! I did like the royal blue color, the fabric, and the fit of this dress. I am not impressed by the ruffled sleeves, neckline, or by Tina's hair-don't. I do love her accessories however!

Hailee Steinfeld - What an amazing look! Nothing like a straight, side ponytail to keep this beautiful look youthful, but elegant. The pearl halter dress had just enough character to stand out, but not overpower this young star. She gets an A+ from me!

Melissa Leo - There is nothing spectacular about this dress at all. It's black (blah), it has a square neckline (blah), and even though it's sparkly, it has no character (obvious blah)! She could have found a gown to fit her figure better, and done something different with her mess of a hairstyle!

Jayma Mays - Can you say MOUSY? The hairstyle, the dress, the orange lipstick ALL go towards making this overly thin star look like a dressed up mouse. I took a long hard look and really tried to find something positive to say about her look, but it's just not coming to me...

Vanessa Williams - The one-shoulder metallic dress is beautiful. Would I have picked it for Vanessa? Nope! Not at all! Her figure isn't what it was 20 years ago, and I don't think she pulled off this figure hugging gown like she would have when she was younger. I totally think it was a bad choice for her!

Piper Perabo - I loved this dress onscreen. In the photos online, it's just "ok". It is in NO WAY a contender for best dressed, but it is definitely elegant, and when paired with Piper's beautiful up-do (better seen onscreen), and her amazing figure, it truly does shine!

Katey Sagal - Have you ever tried on one of those ill-fitting Halloween costumes? I believe that's what Katey did before stepping out on the red carpet! I can't say much more!

Gabourey Sidibe - Hmmm. I cannot figure out whether I like or hate this dress. Gabourey is a very hard fit, because of her obvious obesity. Aside from that, she has pulled off some nice looks in the past. This gown isn't horrible on her, but it isn't great either. If I had to stay neutral on any dress of the evening, this would probably be it.

Edie Falco - First of all, who? Second of all, I have nothing to say about this. Really!

Helen Mirren - This is SUCH an age-appropriate dress. I love everything about this look. Her diamond necklace is amazing! Her hair is perfect! Her dress is flattering! She gets an A+ from me for sure!

Amber Riley - Please tell me this looked much better onscreen, because here it looks like a big roll of aluminum foil! I do think the lines of the dress are perfect for her figure, including the waist-cinching belt, but the fabric is hard to get past!

Jenna Uskowitz - Simply gorgeous! Casey says that this dress looks like a prom dress above the waist and a Golden Globe dress below the waist. I just think that it's an overall Golden Globe WIN!!! I think Jenna looks stunning from her loose, curly hair to the bottom of her ruffly blue dress.

Jessalyn Gilsig - Fist of all... what a name... wow! I think this brocade dress was gorgeous onscreen. I'm not sure of the color, but I know it wasn't completely black. It would never get on the best dressed list, but it was definitely worth a look. Jessalyn's hairstyle and accessories were a perfect addition to this lovely dress!

Julianne Hough - I loved everything about this! The neckline of this black dress was adorned with a necklace-like applique, and the dress itself fit Julianne perfectly. I also loved her simple, but elegant up-do! A+ for sure!

Kaley Cuoco - Ewwwwww!!!! Nothing about her hair, her face, her skin, her dress, her accessories stick out!!!! She would get lost in the background if there weren't black letters on the signboard. What made her choose this?

Giuliana Rancic - Pretty? YES! Elegant? YES! Memorable? NO! Sometimes I think she tries too hard!

There are more celebs that I saw on the red carpet that I wanted to review. I cannot remember their names, and none of them were best or worst dressed, so I won't try to find them. This year, was by far, the hardest I've had to review as of yet. I am hoping that the Oscar's prove to be easier. Please leave your comments below. I would love to hear your thoughts whether you agree or disagree with my reviews. :)

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Something I wrote a few years back

My Life as a Brunette

Five weeks ago, I decided to become a brunette. I hadn't had brown hair in almost 10 years, and even then, I didn't consider myself a "brunette". It was always light brown. I wanted to see what it felt like. I wanted to actually call myself a brunette.. so after my hairdresser's 5 minute protest, she finally agreed to send me into brunetteland!

I found out some things during that time. First of all, even after having dark brown hair for a full 5 weeks, I still shocked myself everytime I looked in the mirror. I saw myself as pale and washed out, because I had been used to looking at blonde hair for so long. The day after I colored it, I wanted to immediately go and get blonde highlights. I called my hairdresser and she told me to give it a week.

Blondes and brunettes definitely get different responses from other people. Now, personally, I am drawn to people with darker hair. If you put a magazine in front of me and there is a blonde and a brunette on the same page, my eye will automatically go to the brunette. I don't know why.. I guess it's just the way I am. It's also one of the reasons I wanted to try it out.

As a brunette, I found women to be friendlier towards me. It wasn't my imagination. It's true. I don't know if women see a brunette woman as more trustworthy, friendly, or what, but I definitely got a more positive response from females. The opposite was true for men. It was almost like I became invisible. Not that I want men hitting on me, but it was so obvious that most men do prefer blondes. I did have a handful of men at church tell me they liked my brown hair, but for the most part, I would get a shake of the head (like "I can't believe you did that"), an actual "WHY DID YOU DO THAT?" or an "Oh, you colored your hair" response, which we all know means... "I can't stand it". My dad even shook his head at me.

As for my husband, he has always preferred brunettes so he tells me. He did like me as a brunette, but told me that he missed my blonde hair. After all, he married a blonde, right? Soooooo, after living 5 very long weeks with dark brown hair, I am finally a blonde again.

I learned a lot about people and myself while living in brunetteland. I also learned that I never want to go back there. Not because I don't like brunettes, because like I said, I naturally am drawn to them, but because I don't like ME as one.