WTF is Erewhon?

Erewhon_logo
ALL PHOTOS ON THIS POST WERE TAKEN FROM EREWHON’s WEBSITE and GOOGLE IMAGES

I know that some expensive things are just frivolous and a waste of money, but everyone should have a list of non- negotiable items that are just worth the extra dime. Mine, for sure, include hair stylist, hand bags, shoes, and food.

First_Whole_Foods_Market_store,_1981
This photo of the original Whole Foods triggers a rush of memories for me. I can picture the entire inside layout with clarity! Fresh apples and veggies and some amazing home made dried fruits…..

26 years ago, when I was just a young student in Austin, every Sunday, no matter the heat or the rain, exhaustion level, or exams, I would head over to the this tiny little grocery store to support my local organic farmers. In attempt to minimize my carbon footprint, with my expandable crochet grocery bag over my shoulders,  I would hike the 3 mile trek across Guadeloupe to the original Whole Foods.  At the time Whole Foods was a small eco-friendly food co-op. I was always greeted by a friendly staff and the food here ALWAYS surpassed the products at the other local options (HEB and Ralphs). Not only did everything taste better, it even looked better. More natural. Over the years Whole Foods became a national brand, and I continued to support it, partially out of habit and partially out of nostalgia. I do still believe the food from Whole Foods tastes superior to other grocery stores- though I think they, on some accounts, they are on par with a much more affordable “Sprouts Market”.

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This weekend MSM took me to a  “new” (to me) grocery store with the most peculiar name; Erewhon. (pronounced Eh-ro-whan). This place either a. transported me back to 1974, when things were just more fresh and less stuffed with preservatives or b. seriously sells better food. I mean I thought Whole Foods was the top of the crop but I, apparently, was wrong. Whole Foods is no longer the king of my grocery world. I just ate some cherries (from Erewhon) that tasted AH-MAZING. Honestly I can’t even describe it. They just tasted different. More like I remember cherries tasting years ago. The house-made hummus tastes like we flew to Israel and grabbed it off a local’s table. How can food taste so different?? So fresh and, for lack of other words, “real”? I’ve been trying to read more and more about GMO’s and organic farming and the information I’ve found has been all over the place. After eating the food from Erewhon I’m definitely siding with the anti-GMO group. There most DEFINITELY is a difference. Yes, the Fagé at this market is 2$ more than at Whole Foods and without a doubt tastes the same, but the produce, meat, poultry….anything not processed FAR surpasses that of any other store. These items seem even tastier than the products I’ve gotten at the local farmers market. Astonishingly enough that I’m actually writing about it.  They have some interesting mildly processed items, such as no salt added Kimchi or a healthy toxin-free  (low fat, low sodium, but somehow still tasty) pizza crust made with added spirulina. I have to say, I will definitely be returning to Erewhon. It is well worth the extra dollars. Only potential downside? If you want to blend in with the new Venice clientele, make sure you style your hair and don a nice designer piece. Everyone that was shopping here was really beautiful.

Gwyneth_Erewhon
A photo of Gwyneth Paltrow at outside Erewhon. Yep, beautiful people shop here.

WHAT THE HECK TO WEAR TO EREWHON:

As I mentioned above, one designer piece and a nicely coiffed do is perfect. Mainly what I saw here was high end Alo yoga wear, Stella McCartney Adidas, and a couture handbag.

rosie-huntington-whiteley-at-erewhon-natural-foods-market-what to wear
This is the perfect outfit for the high-end grocery shopper. That “I’m casual but rich” look. Yoga wear is still big on the west side of LA as an every day look, especially on weekends. 

On a side note….things have been a crazy whirlwind with my career. All good things. Wrapping up Season 8 of Regular Show and trying to figure out whats next on the horizon….so i’ve been very focused on that. More blogging to come though!

Stay strong ya’ll! Hope you had a festive Forth of July weekend and that you have more fun with your freedom this coming weekend!

TGIF

xoxo

QJ

QJ

Serious Summer Fun

 

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Just a quick blog RE post… my fellow blogger, Monica, had the brilliant idea of posting a list of places to order cocktails out of a golden pineapple! Check it out here: Gisele Chic.

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I’m obsessed. Nothing says classy sassy summer fun like a gilded pineapple filled to the brim with proverbial ambrosia! There are, according to Monica’s list,  five places in Los Angeles that partake in this ingenuous idea. I plan on visiting each and every one of them this summer, and will blog about it (including what to wear while embibing, of course). Peruse the rest of her blog as well. She’s a genius!

Tootles for now!

xoxo

QJ

QJ

The Ingenue.

This weekend I had the honor of meeting a very sweet young but enterprising fashion designer, Chloe Selby. Though most of our discussion was about ingredients in a “make your own smoothie”, and how strawberries, mint, parsley, and spinach obviously do NOT make a good combo (duh! What was I thinking?), we did touch on blogging and fashion and our dreams. It was so refreshing to meet someone young and unaffected. Despite our age difference, Chloe did not mind staying engaged in conversation. Even though she is sage beyond her years, Chloe reminded me of the innocence of youth and how its okay to not only dare to dream, but to work towards a dream. I fear that as we age, we loose faith in the universe and we loose our ability to dream. Loss after loss, we acquire an attitude of “whats the point?” and eventually just stop dreaming all together. Lets not let this happen to us. No matter how many nay sayers you meet, and no matter how old you are and how many adversities you’ve faced, don’t let go of your dreams. And if you’ve grown out of some dreams, write a new list. Start small and work towards big.  Not every dream will end in disappointment. It just wont. And when some do come to fruition, embrace the moment and celebrate!

If any of you have read The Fountainhead, you’ll remember Howard Roark’s attitude towards learning all the the details of a job before being able to master overall production. Along with her obvious passion, I was very impressed with Chloe’s respect for learning the art of sewing, pattern making, and the rest of the ingredients that make up fashion design. I also adored her Jacqui Aiche necklace. Anyone who has an appreciation for Jacqui Aiche has appreciation from me. This fille will most certainly make it to the top. I look forward to following her blog and seeing her creations. Check her out yourself: Chloe Selby Style

Craziness at work ensues this week, but its all fun! Danielle sent a few summer pieces, all of which were totally unflattering for my body type and extremely expensive. Like my smoothie from above, this is not a good combo! Boo! Still looking for that perfect number to go with my SW buff highlands (see previous post),  I decided to rebel and pick a few pieces myself. Staying in line with my resolution, I wanted to pick just one piece that was affordable, current, and could replace something else in my closet. These are the three I ordered, hopefully one works:

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I love this little dress by Tularosa. The color is so feminine and I feel like it would be a great pair with the SW boots. The cut may not look good on my shape. Its hard to tell by the photo. We shall soon find out.
OnTheFence
This is a little sexy for work (obvi!), but MSM and I won a trip to Kauai and I feel like it would be perfect for that. I’ve always wanted a deep V dress. Again, may look horrible on my shape but its worth a shot! Like I said earlier- dare to dream!
Riller&Fount
This third one by Riller and Fount is super casual. I can wear it to work for sure, with a denim or leather jacket over it if needed. It could also look cute with the boots. Also not for sure a flattering cut. We shall see when they all arrive tomorrow.

 

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I almost chose this one instead of the previous. And it is possible it could be more flattering. Though the off the shoulder thing has not been fabulous on me…..So I went for the former.

Meanwhile, I’m obsessing over these shoes. I have no idea why, since they look like orthopedic shoes for the elderly. I think because they look so cute when Danielle outfits them on her blog, AND because they honestly look comfortable. My ballerina see these and think “clouds!”. They are very hip right now and I can wear them even with a mini dress. Extra bonus? MSM will be SO pleased I’m not in heels and we can walk for miles on our dates!

Danielle_stella
See? Totally cute once outfitted and on! They don’t look orthopedic here at all. Danielle’s wearing the wedge version, which is more of a no brainer to me. I adore them. Sadly they are sold out….

What do you all think? Yay or Nay?

PS In case you missed my on-camera television debut, check out The Shahs of Sunset “Lights, Cameras, Kaftans” here!! See if you can find me at the Four Season’s event ;).

xoxo

QJ

QJ

 

 

 

 

I am Pippi Longstocking….

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If you say it fast its funny!

Nothing has brought me into a rush of nostalgia like the intro to Pippi In The South Seas. Our memorial day weekend launched with a surprise viewing of this film. The minute the title credits were done and the story opened in Pippi’s house I literally felt like I was hit on the head with a flash of memories. I’ve never realized how much I loved Pippi. I remember the house as if it were my own. Every detail. Where the kitchen table was, what the wallpaper looked like, Old Man (her horse), the amazing dirigible that Pippi created from her bed, Pippi’s strange sense of fashion, Annika and Tommy….the list goes on. Embraced by the warm familiarity of “home” and pacified by the soothing sound of the projector purr (yes, it was real film shown via projector),  I sat on the edge of my seat (albeit somewhat because the chair was very uncomfortable) and enjoyed every moment of the story. For 90minutes I remembered being 8 years old and building forts out of pillows and blankets and my parent’s huge library chairs. I remembered how I built my own dirigible and flew over the 7 seas looking for pirates. What happens to humans that so many seem to lose that sense of magic? I’d like to read more on the subject of the “adolescent brain”. Is there a way we can slow down the degeneration? Or resuscitate it once its gone? Why do some have the ability to stay young at heart, and others loose it?

What can we learn from Pippi:

A. Anything is possible if we just believe in ourselves and our own strength.

B. If something goes wrong, no need to worry at all because no matter what, a solution is just around the corner.

C. Some things may look mundane, but it’s really a disguise. There is something special in everything, we just need to think outside the box.

D. As long as you have family (close friends included), you have everything you need to make it.

E. Memories are malleable. Don’t be subjected to a negative past. If you don’t like the story, change it. Look at it from a different perspective or headspace.

F. Enjoy the little things. Don’t forget to smell the roses.

G. Singing a ditty makes everything more fun.

Cinefamily

Cinefamily

This event was thrown by Cinefamily. Taken directly from their website:

The Cinefamily is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization of movie lovers devoted to finding and presenting interesting and unusual programs of exceptional, distinctive, weird and wonderful films.

The Cinefamily’s mission is to reinvigorate film culture by fostering a spirit of community and a sense of discovery.

Like campfires, sporting events and church services, we believe that movies work best as social experiences. They are more meaningful, funnier and scarier when shared with others.

The Cinefamily was founded in 2007 by brothers Dan and Sammy Harkham and Hadrian Belove, founder of Cinefile Video. We currently average 14 shows per week, many of which are enhanced with special guests, live music, dance parties, potlucks and other kinds of social fun. Over 65,000 patrons visit the Cinefamily annually.

If you are interested in learning more regarding show times and events: Cinefamily Website

In a rush today. I’ve been slammed at work and  am helping set up for a benefit at the studio tonight. Have a great weekend everyone! Work hard, play hard!

xoxo

QJ

QJ

 

The key to procrastination.

This season of Regular Show is down to the last six episodes and I currently have been procrastinating my episode builds via an obsessive amount of on-line shopping. And by “shopping”, I mean “cart filling but not purchasing.” My fashion fairy godmother (and educator), Danielle, has been MIA due to a her “pregnancy brain” leaving me to my own devices. Or shall I say “vices”? I’m actually proud and a bit impressed with my will power. Despite filling to the brim numerous on-line carts, I have not subjugated my wallet to a bunch of (probably) stupid, albeit designer, clothing purchases. Who knows the underlining cause of my distraction, but luckily Danielle has been responding to my various texts containing pictures of clothing she “does not love”. I have been true to my New Years resolution regarding toning down the major fashion purchases, and learning to use what I already have. 🙂 I admit, though, it has NOT been easy.

The following are some things I’ve had a particularly difficult time walking away from:GucciJKT

  1. The Gucci silk bomber varsity jacket. I am seriously obsessed and can’t let it go. OMG why do I love this so much? Is it that it reminds me of The Pink Ladies in Grease 2, and the “bad-assedness” of Michelle’s Pfieffer’s character? grease-2-pink-ladies-JacketOr is it a nostalgic pull from a time I wish I could have visited for a time-travel vacation, the 1950’s, when high school boys would drape their “girl” in a warm and loving varsity bomber? VarsityBomberJacketMy obsession with finding an affordable alternative to this 3500$ jacket lead me to a close second. I’m on the fence about it, but I feel like its cute?

    Maje_SilkBomber
    I feel like this is a close second to the Gucci dream jacket and comes in at a MUCH lower cost of 350$. It also comes in the vibrant green as well. This Maje version is currently sold out but hopefully more are coming soon!
  2. Sexy layered mini skirts. This has been the biggest distraction. I’ve been preoccupied with finding the perfect girly summery skirt that I can dress down for work but “sex up” for date night. Honestly I have found nothing and when I asked Danielle she sent me a long sleeved drop waisted mini dress. Cute, but not at all what I was looking for. I especially want to pair said skirt with my buff colored Stewart Weitzman Highlanders.
    SW_OverTheKnee_BuffBoots
    Why is it so hard to find a summery skirt to wear with these? I’ve found no reference photos on Pinterest either. They are mostly paired with jeans. Also, am I crazy thinking I can wear these in the summer? I mean it gets chilly here at night…..

    Here are some ideas I have had, but in the end were either too expensive or, if affordable, looked cheaply made and like nothing special. This hunt may warrant a visit to Elise Walker during her summer sale.

    Forever21skirt
    I thought this white skirt from Forever 21 was feminine and pretty for the boots. Danielle said “no.”
    pinkSkirt
    This pink layered skirt and top seemed nice at first but then as I looked at it more, the love faded….

    IsabelMarant
    I love this skirt top combo. The feminine silhouette with the layered skirt is perfectly juxtaposed with the geometric design. This unique outfit is exactly what I’m looking for and I’m willing to bet would look amazing with over the knee boots. Except the price point at over 1k/piece is a bit beyond my reach.
  3. The Morkie. Ok, I know you don’t just buy a dog online and call it a day. Contrary to some opinions, they are not accessories. However, with my babies living all the way down south with no prospect of returning home, I just keep begging MSM for a tiny little love baby. MorkiePuppy
    I mean at under 20lbs it seems any apartment would take one of these stupidly cute fur babies. Alas, I know he’s right in saying “no” (for now). Despite them not being at home, I still care for my four leggers with monthly visits and bill paying. I need to wait until the time is right. Meanwhile, I can still look right? morkiebannerI mean look at that face! Heart melting isn’t it? His name will either be R2, Navin, Henry, or Cruton.

If ya’ll have any ideas for skirts that would look feminine and pretty with my over the knee boots, please paste a link in the comments below.  With the holiday weekend rapidly approaching, maybe something extra special will be on sale!!

Have a fantastic Memorial Day Weekend!

xoxo

QJ

QJ

 

 

Narcos.

 

DEA
Whats not to love about an event with adorable dogs, great food, lovely people, and interesting speakers? Netflix has outdone any other FYC events I’ve attended.

Well, another FYC event has come and gone. This past one was for the show Narcos, which MSM watches religiously. Actually,  MORE religiously he watched Battlestar Galactaca– if “binge watching” is considered “religious”, but he does very much enjoy Narcos and I wanted to take the opportunity to treat him to something special.

Narcos_Panel

Narcos is about the life (and death, at some point) of Pablo Escobar. The show is in Spanguese with English subtitles. They claimed it was all Spanish, but I can tell there is some Portuguese thrown in. Impressively, actor Wagner Moura (who plays Escobar) immersed himself into a Spanish speaking village for three months in order to learn the language (his first language is Portuguese)  and embrace that which was indigenous to Pablo Escobar, the Cultura and enviroment that potentially made him into the man that he became. I mean that is dedication! The panel for this event was Moura, his supporting actor, Boyd Holbrook (DEA cop), and the two show creators/producers Jose Padhila and Eric Newman. It was fascinating to hear how much prep work went into the show. They planned from the get-go to use real stock footage as a coup to aid the viewers into believing the story, because without it, “Escobar’s story is too hard to believe.” It was also interesting to hear how the director is very supportive of improv-ed lines, how he felt these lines are what make the characters feel more real and not “acted”. I enjoyed watching the screening of Ep 1 (there was no pilot) on the “big screen”. Its safe to say this show is feature quality. Obviously Netflix does not cut corners on production, nor on their events.

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The story telling and camera work on Narcos is remarkable  but the real reason the show  will get my Emmy vote is Netflix REALLY knows how to throw a party ;). I say this in jest, because of course it takes more than that to get an Emmy vote, but WOW Netflix! I mean WOW. SO classy. Its not hard to make the venue, Paramount Theater lobby and patio at Paramount Studios, look amazing. Though not ostentatious, it is nothing short of stunning.The fountains, the lighting, the arches, and the architecture is old world and humbling, in a comforting way. It amazes me that this theater has held in its halls some of the most incredible actors and actresses. The Golden Era starlettes who had less entitlement issues and more excitement about the process of film making. This night, the patio and lobby were nicely decorated with tailored small table rounds holding simple floral arrangements. Heat lamps were strategically located to keep us protected from the unseasonably chilly air. Buffet tables, small and various, were displayed about the patio. Suit-clad butlers carried tray passed hor devours. The food, from  Bomba’s through  Bandeja Paisa all the way to the Churros, was exquisite! Though it seems obvious, it was genius to serve all Columbian faire. I had never had Columbian food before. I didn’t even know it existed- other than coffee, of course. It was a nice lesson in the cuisine of a South American country other than Mexico.

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The desert buffet was a festive mix of columbian specialties, strawberries, donuts, and brownies. I loved that Netflix thought of providing something for everyone. For our meal the had vegan and vegetarian options as well. So thoughtful!
Bambas
I’d like to introduce you to Bomba, a DELICIOUS mix of mushrooms and who knows what else? Who cares?! They were fantastic!

The people at this event were as elegant as the venue. Seemingly friendly, cultivated, and polished but with no air of superiority. MSM and I enjoyed conversations with music producers, DJs, and pod cast producers. It was a fantastic arrangement of industry professionals.

What the heck to wear to an event at a theater on a movie lot:

Other than being with MSM, the food and the actual screening, my favorite part of the evening was taking a photo with the DEA dogs on the red carpet!

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Jacket: Joie T shirt: H&M Skirt: Helmut Lang Bag: Chloe Shoes: Sole Society by Juliana Hough 

As we left the studio lot, in vein of Stephen Spielberg, I made a wish on the gates of the lot. As did his, I hope mine come true!

Overall, well done Netflix! I’ve been wanting to work with you on new content since 2008. If you treat your employes with a fraction of the love and attention you give your productions and events, I hope one day I get an opportunity to be on your team!

xoxo

QJ

QJ

 

 

What Would Audrey Do? Exemplary life lessons learned from the Gamine.

Happy Birthday Ms. Hepburn!

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“Forgive quickly, kiss slowly, love truly, laugh uncontrollably, and never regret anything that made you smile.”

A few years ago, or maybe even earlier, someone said “May the 4th be with you so you can come 4th on the 5th” or something stupid like that. I’m not sure but I believe this had something to do with drinking a lot on Cinco De Mayo. Now, I adore Star Wars as much as the next Sci Fi geek, but please, that expression is SO last year. In my opinion it’s entered the LAME category. While everyone else is saying “May the 4th be with you” today  I thought a celebratory homage was in order for Audrey Hepburn’s birthday. Fashion Icon and fellow embracer of her inner child, I have always adored this woman.

Audrey
When in doubt, grab a big hat, sunglasses, or both.

So the hat doesn’t have to be THAT big! I’ve just recently jumped on the hat band wagon myself. It took some getting used to but I actually love them. Everyone should own a great fedora. A good friend just divulged some hat fit tips:

  1. You shouldn’t have to push that hat down onto your head. If you do, it’s too small.
  2. Once the hat is placed on your head, bend forward. If the hat stays, the fit is correct. If it falls, it’s too big.

AudreyLaugh

“I love people who make me laugh. I honestly think it’s the thing I like most, to laugh. It cures a multitude of ills. It’s probably the most important thing in a person.” -Audrey Hepburn

I wonder if Audrey was quoting my father on this one. I couldn’t agree more! Laughter is a key ingredient to a successful life. Not to mention it can cure ills. It really can!

AudreyAdventure
Finding adventure is imperative to happiness.

I mean honestly, everyone has their own passions. Find yours and explore them. I love to travel and try new foods. I love the arts. It’s important we think outside the box. If we remain status quo, we’re not really living.

RnR
Never forget the importance of some well deserved R&R.

I think people often forget to take some time to replenish their soul. Or they are too afraid they don’t deserve that respite from the business of daily life. It’s so important to pamper yourself even if that’s just resting in your back yard, reading a book. We all deserve this alone time and should take it. How are we supposed to continue to help others, if we ourselves are tapped out and exhausted. Make sure to take a moment, every day, for yourself.

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That being said, don’t forget to lend a hand to a friend. Or even a stranger! Making the world a better place should be something for which we all strive.

 

Audrey

What The Heck To Wear While Embracing Life:

Audrey said “Always be the leading lady of your own life”.  I think this means stay true to yourself and stand tall. Is it so wrong that I’ve made up my own life theme song? I think not. ;).

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I love how liberating travel can be. The theme song to this image is: Love Is All Around by Joan Jett Jacket: Current Elliot  Blouse: Equipment  T shirt: James Perse  Jeans: Mother  Bag: Gucci

Last week I embraced my inner-Audrey and decided to take an extended lay-over in Chicago. It was SO MUCH FUN!

ChiTown
May need to blog about my fabulous adventure in the Windy City of Chi Town. Jacket: Burberry Scarf: Charlotte Ruse

Happy Birthday Audrey!

xoxo

QJ

QJ Continue reading

Vive La France!

LittleDoorCard

Last night MSM took me out for a very special treat. We basically went to France and as you know, J’adore France and anything French!

The night started at The Little Door, A French Mediterranean restaurant in the heart of West Hollywood. This quaint abode is possibly the most enchanting eatery I have ever visited (in America anyways). Upon entering the rustic hideaway ensconced in twinkle lights and foliage, I felt I had literally escaped to a courtyard bistro in Cassis. Even the host was legitimately French. We were seated at an intimate round table mid-courtyard. From the airy music to the way in which the dishes were plated, everything about this place felt both romantic and sexy.

LittleTable_Celine_Nano
How could one not adore this quaint abode?! I could not help but notice the adorable Celine Nano in the window either. SO CUTE.

Over cocktails and great conversation MSM and I shared appetizers of baby artichoke salad and a Mezze Mediterranean sampler. I chose a vodka rhubarb cocktail that was well balanced between tart and refreshing. MSM had a Moscow Mule (those are quite in fashion right now) that had just that right amount of ginger bite. Yum! The hummus was the best I’ve ever tasted. Even the pita tasted fresh/made in house! True spanikopita is hard to find in LA (as opposed to the trader joes freezer section spinach wedges in filo), but The Little Door basically must have borrowed the recipe from my grandmother. Devine!

SeasonalRhubarb
This delicious drink, The Seasonal Rhubarb, consists of beluga vodka, rhubarb and lemon juice. It was the perfect combination of crisp and tart. Also, its so pretty!

For our main course we shared the lamb stew. Also exquisitely made, this dish was hearty but not too heavy. Small pearl onions with carrot, lamb, chicken, and sausage over quinoa brought the comfort of a home cooked meal. It was nice to be able to converse with MSM and have no vibes of being rushed out for table turn over. That being said, we did not feel like we were waiting forever for anything either. The staff was appropriately polite and attentive.

StarrySky
Under the starry sky we laughed and cried while the crickets sang songs of love and happy endings. Tickled by the enchanting ambience, we giggled over candles and twinkle lights and ate our delicious meal.

The Colcoa French Film and Televison Festival

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After dinner we were either going to see Christine and the Queens, a french singer that we love, or attend a film at the French Film Festival. Tickets to the former were pretty steep so we opted for the latter and I am SO happy about it because the film we saw, The Wall Crawler, was an adorable tale that only the French could have spun. I adore French films. Honestly, the stories are so good! I can’t put my finger on what the difference is between French and American dramedies that makes them so much better. I feel like the characters in the French variety are just so much more approachable for some reason….

passemuraille
This darling rom com staring Denis Podalydès is about a man that can literally walk through walls. I love a great French film. I am never disappointed. My ultimate favorite, Hors De Prix, is a must see!

For good measure (and to keep things “french”) we listened to our favorite Christine and the Queens song on the way to the film festival. I’ll include the song here in case ya’ll want to hear something new.

 

WHAT THE HECK TO WEAR ON A WEDNESDAY NIGHT IN FRANCE:

I wanted to look sexy for MSM but I also needed something appropriate in case we had to walk far. I’m often getting talked to regarding my shoe choices. I decided to pair skinny jeans and a nice blouse with my Valentino Rock-Studs because despite the heel they are INCREDIBLY comfortable.

FrenchOutfit
Top: Joie Jeans: Rag and Bone Bag: Chanel Shoes: Valentino

Thank you MSM for the romantic getaway to France. It was fabulous. And just think, no jet lag or long airplane ride! Who knew France was right here in my back yard?

Bon Voyage my friends!

xoxo

QJ

QJ

 

 

FYC: For Your Consideration.

JaneTheVirginScript

Its that time of the year again- the time when boxes upon boxes of DVD’s show up at my edit bay door. Sent from a plethora of networks, these DVDs contain TV show episodes and movies that need Emmy nominations from Academy members. I always wonder if most members watch through everything?! I try and watch the ones in the categories for which I’ll vote. It would take a year to get through all the DVDs….maybe more! I don’t necessarily look forward to all the boxes, but I DO look forward to being part of such an exhilarating time in the television season.

I’m so delighted to have launched this pre-Emmy’s season with a bang. Last night I attended my first For Your Consideration (FYC) Academy event at El Portal theater in North Hollywood, exploring one of my favorite shows; Jane The Virgin. (I even blogged about this show here ).

Marqee
This photo includes elegant Ana Dela Cruz. While in line, I enjoyed our conversation. Ana is an actress on many shows and commercials, often playing the roll of the doctor- as she did in the second season of Jane The Virgin. Here’s to many more rolls for the lovely Ana!

All Academy members are invited to FYC events. Its another opportunity for networks to explain why they feel their show(s) deserve an Emmy nomination. Usually these events start with either a screening of an important episode, or a sizzle reel displaying samples of exemplary work. The screeners are followed by a panel consisting of actors, writers, producers, sometimes editors- moderated by a guest. The moderators ask the creatives/producers questions regarding the creation of the show, the working environment, personal revelations….the list goes on. At the end, questions are opened to the audience (academy members). The panel is followed by a cocktail and appetizer reception where the members and show runners/creatives/producers can mingle. I believe that some members try and attend all of the FYC events during the pre-Emmy season. I tend to only visit the ones covering shows I adore, or shows MSM likes (if I’m allowed to bring a guest).

Jane The Virgin Table Read Season 2 Ep 1
It was unique for the producers of Jane The Virgin to kick off their event with a table read rather than a screener.

I was beyond excited when I received my FYC invite to Jane. The crew handled their event a little differently. Rather than a screener, the members all received a script from the show and we watched a table read of Season 2 Ep 1. I was SO relieved that’s as far as they went into season 2 because I only watch shows on Netflix, so I’m  a season behind. This way there were no spoilers!

After the table read they had their regular panel, moderated by surprise guest Mario Lopez! Yay! A Saved By The Bell throwback! I’ll take it!

JaneTheVirginPanel

 

JTV_PanelCU
This is as close as I was able to get to “Raphael”, Justin Baldoni and “Petra”, Yael Grobglass. Both seemed really down to earth- just like the others. This is the type of crew I always hope to be working with, and am lucky that right now I am. Little side note- I have always loved the name Yael.

I was impressed with how well the crew got a long and how modest they all were. I can definitely relate to the wonderful and refreshing joy it is to be with a kind and talented crew that is grateful and excited to be part of the team of that particular project. I had fun meeting some of the actors. I wish I could have met them all, but I had to pick my top few because they were getting bombarded and I knew there wasn’t enough time to talk with everyone. I loved meeting Jamie Camil (Rogelio). During the panel presentation I noticed that this man is smart, sassy, and down right hilarious. I also think his acting on the show is superb.  While waiting in line I also met a few actors that played reoccurring incidental parts. All very lovely people.

Gina_Rodreguez
Gina was literally swarmed. I just can’t get over how crazy things got after the panel. We all work in the industry so I was wondering why this particular event was full of people wanting AUTOGRAPHS. I mean yes, the crew is stellar and they all seem so humble and appreciative. I was excited to meet them as well. But acting like a bunch of star struck teenagers?! I was embarrassed for half the people that were there. Then I remembered… why worry about the things you can’t control? I just stayed true to myself and let the others deal with the craziness :). Gina seemed like a doll and took the time to speak with everyone that wanted to talk with her. She was eloquent and classy and seems to be a fabulous roll model for today’s young women. I have to say I felt the same about Andrea Novado, who plays Jane’s Mother, Xiomara. Both impressive.
TeamMichael_JaneVirgin
Team Michael? The lighting in this place was terrible for photos but I had to post this one.  It was cool meeting the happy-go-lucky and easy to talk to Brett Dier. Brett is a little more laid back and humorous than his character Michael (though I adore Michael as well). We talked briefly about ComicCon, but then I had to move on. Not kidding about the actors being swarmed after the panel!
Rogelio_Jamie
So sue me, I’m Team Rogelio all the way! Jamie Camil was amazing. Funny, smart, talented- the whole package. I adore this selfie we took. It completely captures the essence that is Jamie. My favorite thing that he said? That he can’t stand those people that act like they are “the last coca-cola bottle in the dessert.” I concur.  Well said Mr. Camil!

I had to prioritize, so I missed out on meeting “Raphael”, “Petra” and others. I was very exctied to meet head writer and producer Jennie Urnan. I had learned, while waiting in line for the event, that Ms. Urnan has been a writer on pretty much every show I enjoy (Ugly Betty and Gossip Girl, to name a few). I wanted to let her know that I would be excited to cut a show she wrote. I realize writers probably have no say in the hiring of post production editors, but her writing is so smart and funny and so many of her shows, mostly dramadies,  have covered subject matter that I dream of cutting.  I have learned over the years that the things we do that we feel passionately about 9 times out of ten end up fairly amazing. And the process of creation is even that much more fun. So universe…..I hope one day I can cut a show on CW that Jennie is writing.

Next I met Ivonne Coll. Honestly, she’s the initial reason I gave Jane The Virgin a shot. Ms. Coll also plays the Grandmother in Switched At Birth (I just adore this show. It gets my vote for Drama every year). I was curious to see what other show she picked to collaborate.

 

Abuela
Ms. Ivonne Coll is a remarkable actress with so much range. I just adore what she puts in to her characters. She mentioned that when she has a spanish part in an american show, she writes her intensions in english. This was interesting to me because maybe it helps non spanish speakers to understand what she’s saying via her mannerisms…..

I do believe Jane The Virgin should get an Emmy nomination, at least definitely for the writing. The show is smart, funny, and a fresh creative twist on dramedy. If you haven’t checked it out yet, definitely do!

WHAT THE HECK TO WEAR TO A FYC EVENT:

I was freaking out a little about this one because I knew these events tend to be fairly casual (unless its for Mad Men) but I still wanted to appear chic and successful. Here’s my Danielle approved selection:

FYC_Outcfit
Jacket: Alice and Olivia Sweater: T by Alexander Wang   Jeans: Current Elliott Shoes: Valentino Necklace: Chanel
Chanel_Necklace
I hardly ever have an opportunity to wear this statement piece. I think I need to casually throw it in to more outfits……

I feel like I don’t look so great in all the photos, but the lighting in there…..lets just blame that! What a great night. I’m curious to see if Jane gets a nomination and if so, who will the show be up against? There are a lot of good ones out there. There are also a lot of HORRIBLE ones. We shall see…..

xoxo

QJ

QJ

Beyond the “Chipper Chicken”.

BeachyKitchen
What’s not to love about this amazing kitchen? I adore the soft grey-blues and the nautical vibe. If I had this kitchen, I’d bake and cook up a storm. 

I am so blessed to be living with such an amazing Chef. I’m sitting here right now, at my desk, eating the chicken that MSM whipped up last night for my lunches this week. Leave it to him to discover a new way to flavor this overly used protein choice in a new and fantastic way. This time he concocted his own variation of honey-mustard and garlic. I do think there is something to say about adding love or passion into a meal. It does alter the flavor, I’m sure of it. What was that movie where the girl was crying into her pie dough, and when she shared the pie with the townspeople they all started to cry as well? I’m telling you- there’s truth to that.

GarlicHoneyMustardChicken.jpg
I think the key to cooking with mustard is using the stone ground variety. 

With spring in full bloom and swim suit season around the corner, I am sure we are all more carefully selecting what we put into our bodies. Cheating a little less with Donut Frenemy and focusing more on a solid relationship with delicious fruits and vegetables. Its funny to me how when I eat “clean” foods (unprocessed), I feel so much more energized, healthy, and dare I say youthful?

Father of the Bride
Sometimes its scary (or expensive) to think outside the box. Alternatively, life’s is not fully lived without a little adventure, am I right?

MSM has a bunch of friends that are Chefs (hence his amazing ability to cook- he’s learned from the best- and I’m not exaggerating) so I decided to ask his close friend, Chef Danny G, for a list of lean protein options OTHER than that damn white meat I’m sure we’re all sick of! Here’s his response:

Lean proteins are everywhere. You just need to be open to trying them, educating yourself on how to prepare them, and experiment. The most obvious lean protein is chicken breast and rightfully so. Unfortunately, it can be boring regardless of how you prepare it. However, don’t give up on chicken breast, its a good source of protein and it is cheap.

Now, lets explore the other options that I look to cook and share with my family.

FISH:
Cannelloni filled with Salmon- an Italian specialty.
Um, yum! Cannelloni filled with Salmon- an Italian specialty. Definitely need to try this one! Get recipe here.
To continue with animal protein, lets explore the fish and shellfish family. We eat fish about 3-4 days a week at our house. Here are common fishes that you will find either at Whole Foods or a high quality seafood vendor
  • Halibut, look for Alaskan Halibut. Its a bit pricey ($16-20 per pound) but well worth it. It takes well to any marinade, but be careful to not overcook it. It will dry it out and not be good. Always look for a thick piece 1-3″ piece. I prefer to pan sear the fish for about 2-3 minutes and finish in a hot oven for about 6-8 minutes. Serve it with some roasted vegetables and a salsa verde
  • California White Sea Bass, this a great fish, thick, hearty and a bit cheaper ($12-14per#) than halibut. The skin on this fish can get crispy if you sear it hot and finish in a hot oven. Again, look for thick pieces and request the fish monger to remove any bones, if they don’t, don’t worry you can cook it with and remove after. They are big.
  • MahiMahi, about the same price as sea bass. Great for fish tacos!!! Grill them with a cilantro, lime juice, jalapeno marinade and grill on a very hot and oiled grill.
  • Local Albacore Tuna, this a great local tuna. Caught from San Diego all the way upto SF. About $14-18 per #. Square off the loin of tuna with no skin, add a spice mixture and sear it on a hot oiled pan on all sides. set aside and chill off and slice and serve on a salad or with soba noodles
  • Some other fish options: Haddock, Cod, Flounder, Shrimp, Scallops, Lobster and catfish. Keep in mind though that most shellfish is high in cholesterol

OTHER POULTRY AND PORK:

PorkTenderloin
I had no idea pork was a lean meat. Personally its a bit difficult for me to eat pork (and steak) because I just think pigs (and cows) are so cute! But its good to know its an available option.
  • Lean Turkey Breast, is another option. Very cheap, can find frozen $4-5per#. make kabobs, tacos, grilled or even make a soup with it.
  • Pork Tenderloin, very lean and flavorful. Roast it in the oven with carrots and potatoes and fresh herbs, olive oil and garlic

VEGETARIAN OPTIONS:

Lentils
I am actually somewhat obsessed with lentils. They are so delicious and packed with both protein and fiber. Honestly, they are the real deal here. Such a great superfood in my opinion. They are incredibly challenging to cook, but I’d like to try again with this recipe from Kalyn’s Kitchen : Indian Spiced Lentils
  • Tofu, firm or silken. Takes well with any marinade (sesame oil, minced garlic, mirin and soy) and grill the tofu on a hot grill. serve with vegetables and rice or noodles. you can also make a miso soup with the silken tofu
  • Egg whites are great as well. It takes a bit more creativity but it will work once in a while.

Also don’t forget about legumes, lentils, greek yogurt, soybeans, and cottage cheese

While Chef Danny was explaining all that, I took a minute to look up the movie to which I was referring above. Its called Simply Irresistible, staring Sara Michelle Gellar. I remember it now- totally cheesy. But a fun watch!
Thanks so much, Chef, for your awesome ideas!!
If any of you have some healthy but delicious recipes to share, please send links in the comments below. I’d especially love some ideas for protein packed snacks!
xoxo
QJ

QJ