Me and Celeste and Jesse Forever


Though the title of this post is rather dramatic (catchy though, huh?), one of my unexpected favorite films of 2012, Celeste and Jesse Forever is the epitome of one of those cinematic experiences that I’ll never forget; so much so that I’m still reveling in the residuals of its effects on me as a fellow Angeleno seven months after seeing it. The film not only introduced me to arguably the best soundtrack of the year, it also captured the complexities of relationships humorously and touchingly; and better yet, captured the essence of Los Angeles in some of the best cinematography I’ve seen of the city in some time. It even inspired me to finally take a tour of the Walt Disney Concert Hall.

I followed the seemingly complicated efforts to get a digital release of the album made available and after hearing the news a few months back from the Music Supervisor himself, Jonathan Hafter, (gotta love the power of the blogosphere, you can read more here) – I finally purchased the soundtrack from iTunes. Unfortunately, some of my favorite songs weren’t included on the official soundtrack release, so I bought all of the singles (noted on a Spotify playlist) separately. Let’s just say I spent a great deal of this insanely gorgeous L.A. weekend vibin’ out the likes of Sunny Levine (my new fav), BLO, and Vetiver among others.

Soundtrack Links:

I see hundreds of films every year. There are tons of characters and stories that stick with me as a result, and my devotion to all things cinema oftentimes leave me in a state of never committing to having a single favorite. (Til this day, I cannot answer that question, it gives me a headache even attempting to do so.) Sometimes there are those stories that unexpectedly open your eyes to new things and this is one of those films. I can’t explain why – some hit you harder than others. Perhaps it’s because you were in the right mood, at the right place, at the right time. I walked into this story thinking at best, it would be a fun popcorn flick. I certainly didn’t expect it to resonate so much.

If you’re looking for new tunes (which I happen to listening to as I write this post!) and a great independent film, join me and Celeste and Jesse Forever. 🙂

{Film review excerpted from a previous post.}

Celeste & Jesse Forever – This was one of those films that I left the theater with such a high thinking THIS is why I LOVE movies. Celeste and Jesse are the best of friends, but terrible as husband and wife. The story picks up with their struggle at sustaining a friendship while in the midst of a divorce and pursuing other romantic interests. Rashida Jones (Celeste) and Andy Samberg (Jesse) have such a fluid and natural on-screen chemistry between them that drew me in immediately. What I was most enchanted by was not only the precise well-written dialogue; but the indie feel to how this narrative was told through its stunning salute to another main character, the sweeping city of Los Angeles, via its cinematography choices. I experienced almost every major emotion in 90 minutes of being in Celeste and Jesse’s world and I didn’t want to go. I laughed, felt my eyes water, and smiled at the very complicated, yet entertaining and relatable situation. This is also the first film I’d seen in quite some time where the music was used so impeccably it enhanced the overall experience of the film and introduced me to some of my favorite music of the year. If I had to pick my top film of 2012, this would be it (or closely tied with Zero Dark Thirty).



Mixtape Monday // Friday Night Soundtrack

While on my way to the office a few days ago, Lady Gaga and her mantra to “Just Dance” came into rotation on my iPod while cruising down the 405 freeway, moon roof open, enjoying the L.A. sunshine. Instantly, it took me back to Friday nights circa 2007-2009.

I was in my mid-twenties, single, going out with the girls to dance, dance, dance the night away! While it certainly wasn’t every Friday night that I ventured from the west side into Hollywoodland, there was a time when this was how I kicked-off my weekends. There was something about dressing up, having a cocktail, and checking out the hot spots with friends that I just didn’t want to miss out on. I knew it was a time in my life that I should take advantage of and experience it as best as I could (even when I’d rather stay in with take-out and watch a movie) because I knew the older I got – the more things would change. I consider myself a social drinker (I’m too nerdy to be a party girl) so I would only have a drink or two max because that wasn’t my agenda for being out. It was to be around the music, check out the scene, and enjoy being young in one of the greatest cities in the world.

I have fond memories of the first Hollywood club I ever went to, Vanguard on Hollywood Boulevard. Subsequently, I remember the times I visited Ritual that later turned into Halo (that is now called something else), Green Door, and The Highlands among others.  Some nights the music was on point and everyone was having a good time, other nights the music was terrible and I wanted to go home but refused to because I had already paid $20 for parking! 🙂


{During this period, I also went to Vegas a couple of times for a long weekend or to The O.C. on Saturday nights to hang out with friends there occasionally. I came across this Vegas photo taken at TAO.}

Since then, those nights are far and few in between. I’m still young, don’t have any children or huge responsibilities outside myself, and sometimes I do miss these types of girls night out to blow-off some steam; and mostly, because I L.O.V.E. to dance. Of course, I meet-up with friends for a drink or for dinner, but it’s been some time since I’ve hit Hollywood or Cahuenga Boulevard in search of some fun on a Friday night.

There are certain songs that take you back in time the moment you hear them again after it’s been awhile. For me, hearing that song took me back to a particular night where 4 L.A. girls hit 3 clubs in one night trying to find the right place to “Just Dance.”

In honor of those nights, I’ve curated a short playlist of 12 songs that was the soundtrack of several Friday nights. Where does the time go? Enjoy!

{If you dig it, subscribe to this Spotify playlist here: All That Glitters Mixtape Monday: 03.25.2013}

Walt Disney Concert Hall


Location: 135 North Grand Avenue, Downtown L.A.

This past Saturday was one of those days that I’ll always look back on fondly. What a treat when we decided to take a tour of the famous Walt Disney Concert Hall, home to the Los Angeles Philharmonic, designed by famed L.A. based architect, Frank Gehry.


Named in honor of the legendary Walt Disney through an initial 50 million dollar donation on his wife Lillian’s behalf, the stainless steel structure sits eye-catchingly on the corner of 1st and Grand in Downtown L.A. Aside from the unique curvatures of the gleaming exterior, this facility was built to produce state-of-the-art, unparalleled acoustics for concert-goers.


Always in the mood to explore something for the first time, I was ecstatic when I learned some time ago of their free architectural tours. You can take the self-guided audio tour or, as we did, the 60 minute docent lead tour. Eva, our excellent guide, graciously took us around the massive structure feeding us insight and key details that added context to the visual oasis around me. From the 12,500 pieces of steel; to the use of Douglas Fir tree trunks, for both aesthetic and structural purposes; to details on the funding, development, and construction; as well as the controversy surrounding the reflection issues that caused quite a stir when the sunlight hit the building producing unbearable amounts of heat for the residents living near the building; were all topics of discussion.


What I found most fascinating that I wouldn’t have picked up on without Eva’s knowledge was that the space reflects Frank Gehry’s love of sailing. Inside, walls give a subtle salute to fish scales, railing and carpeting are reminiscent of a cruise ship, and the only piece of art, a painting, sits on the wall in a vibrant ocean blue.



On top of the Concert Hall, sits a slice of heaven dedicated to the memory of Lillian Disney and her love of roses, a public garden that boasts spectacular views of Downtown L.A., the Hollywood Sign and Griffith Observatory.



Unfortunately, the tours don’t take you through the actual auditorium due to on-going rehearsals during this time of year, but we did get a taste of the space when our guide described the sophistication and attention to detail in the acoustic design. The energy and vibration she described that happens during a concert was palpable.

Leaving the space with such appreciation in its architectural design, I realized how much I wanted to return as an actual concert-goer to personally experience what the purpose of this spectacular building is for – a night of live music. It’s now on my list of things to do. Hopefully, I’ll get to share that with you very soon.



Mixtape Monday

It’s Monday. Again. Let’s think happy thoughts, gang!

I got to reminiscing recently about the time I went and saw The Killers to a sold out crowd at the Hollywood Bowl. The warm September night, the Hollywood Sign in the background, and everyone out of their seats the entire show singing loud and proud. It was one of the best concerts I’d ever been to.

So this is my happy Monday thought as we gear up for another work week. I’m spreading the love to you with a curated playlist of my favorite songs by The Killers. Hit play and get to your happy place.

{If you dig it, subscribe to this Spotify playlist here: All That Glitters Mixtape Monday – 2.25.2013}

2013 Grammy Awards: Fashion Hits and Misses

Okay team, admittedly I totally dissed the Grammy’s broadcast this year by not watching any of the red carpet or the actual awards presentation. AND I have good reason! I spent most of the weekend sucked into the vapor of early British 1900’s life by indulging in the delicious mischievousness, and as a gal pal so rightly put it “20th century passive aggressive awesomeness!” with those crazy characters residing at Downton Abbey. After incessantly hearing about this show, I grabbed the first season and got to work on seeing what all the buzz about. Within 10 minutes, I knew I would dig it…and where I would be for most of the weekend.

Alas, the beauty of life these days is that you can catch all the re-caps the next day online minus all the commercials and boring speeches. So in salute to all things fashion, here are my top 5 hits and misses from the biggest night in music.


LOVE everything about her look, super classy, a little showy and what a stunning color on her.
Such a unique dress and she pulls the look together with a braided headband and dramatic cat eyes. Very 21st century Cleopatra.
This was a VERY daring choice and if you look closely, might be borderline too much, but she pulls it off and takes center stage because of it. Move over, Bey!
Admittedly, I didn’t put two and two together when I first saw this picture (who is this?), but everything about her look is one of my absolute favorites of the night. Simple, sexy, classy!
Simply put, this is just a great dress. No muss, no fuss and she looks flawless.



LOVE her, but the print on this dress and those shoes…
Again LOVE her, but those green turtle/alligator/scary spikes….
Jennifer Lopez
The leg is distracting and the cut of the gown looks messy to me. I love a good top bun, but the pointy ones, I just can’t get into. Sorry J-Lo!
Not a fan of the color, the fit on her chest (though she has a great one!), or her harsh makeup.
The head cover, deep-plunging strangely shaped dress and it’s color, don’t make me love it. The clutch is cute!

**Disclaimer: Since it’s obvious I wasn’t at this year’s ceremonies snapping high res photos, all pictures are courtesy of! Photo sources are noted below:
Taylor Swift
Kelly Rowland
Rocsi Diaz
Allison Williams
Florence Welch
Jennifer Lopez
Kat Dennings

Mixtape Monday

It’s a new week boys and girls and if you’re anything like me you have a strong belief that Monday is the devil. Okay, strong words. Monday deserves some love to (I guess). A wise person once told me that you can’t spend your life always looking forward to Friday – you’re just wishing your life away. Word.

To help ease those Monday blues and transition into a new work week, I’ve curated a playlist of songs that will ensure you kick things off right with music that’s been making my life all the much sweeter. So log in to your Spotify account, hit play, sit back and relax, or get to work on those emails with this mix in the background perfect for vibin’ out on this beautiful (Mon)day. It’s Gonna Be A Good Day as BLO sings on track #10.

Happy listening and Happy Monday!

*If you like the mixtape feel free to subscribe to it on Spotify:

All That Glitters Mixtape Monday – 2.11.2013

|| What I’m Lovin’ Right Now ||

If you really stop and think about it, there are so many awesome, inspirational, entertaining, thought-provoking, exciting, deliciously superficial, silly, glamorous or happy things that happen around you everyday if you just open your eyes. I’m opening mine! In addition to the posts dedicated to sharing my personal highlights celebrating the things in life each week that made me smile (you can read my most recent Highlights here) – I’ve decided to start a new recurring blog post to share all of the random things big or small that came into my world, said hello, winked, then either promptly turned it upside down, inside out, or made me give a good “ooooh!” Here’s to having your world ROCKED by a little bit of everything with eyes wide open.

here’s what i’m lovin’ right now


{God bless the person who heard the cries of so many Sex and the City fans who’ve been going through Carrie Bradshaw withdrawal. This new series follows a 16-year-old Carrie prior to becoming the sex column writing fashionista strutting down 5th Avenue in 5-inch Manolos. Fun!}


{When I’m ready for my big walk down the aisle, I’m taking a cue from Emily Schuman of Cupcakes and Cashmere fame and hiring these guys! Instead of your traditional long form wedding video, Shark Pig takes a highly stylized approach to immortalize your big day by shooting on Super 8mm film and editing it into a music video inspired montage creating something magical and timeless. You HAVE to check out Emily’s big day and see their work. Enjoy!}

{Words to live by…}pinksign


{Insert me here…NOW. Thx.}


{needed a full day of chill out music earlier this week and I knew Porcelain Raft’s Drifting In and Out was the vibe I was looking for. Hello Pandora and my new Drifting In and Out Radio Station. Set just the tone and mix I was looking for.}

1-Fullscreen capture 242013 120948 PM


{Mixing my love of cupcakes and popcorn into one yummy treat? Yes, please! The next time I’m in Union Square in S.F. I’m stopping at American Cupcake for their Pink Popcorn Cupcake.}

{Bar carts as side tables.}


{Well said glitter girls (and boys).}

The Christmas Project

Welcome to December! And if we’re lucky, we’ll make it through the end of the world into an uncharted 2013 calendar year. Gotta love those Mayans! They certainly know how to stir up some drama. Couldn’t they have at least waited until AFTER Christmas to dub civilization over? That way, we at least get to die near our Christmas trees with a full stomach and new toys surrounding us? I suspect it will be pretty anti-climactic in the end, kind of like how Y2K came and went. This doesn’t mean that we won’t hear about it for the entire Holiday filled weeks ahead. So prepare mentally now for your Facebook feed to change tone; or not much at all if you have sarcastic, loving friends like I do.

I’ve decided to challenge myself this month to not only survive the end of the world, but to grab 2012 by the balls and go out with a bang (probably not the best word choice in light of the end of time coming soon?). I really liked doing this for Halloween. I guess in theory it won’t be much different, you’re just swapping out pumpkins and horror for gingerbread and cheer! Being the slightly (okay, more than slightly) O.C.D. lover of setting goals and crossing things off lists that I am, I’ve decided to make festivity priority number one this Christmas. Here are my month long to-dos, a.k.a. – The Christmas Project:

1. Decorate my apartment.


This year I want my very own Christmas tree! I made my first decorative purchase last week while at Trader Joe’s. This real mini poinsettia plant. It even had glitter on it! I couldn’t resist.

2. Watch at least 2 Christmas themed movies a week.


This one will be completely do-able for me. Aside from being a total movie whore naturally, I already kicked this task off with my first festive flick, Love Actually (I never get sick of this one). Also on my list to bring in the cheer: Home Alone, It’s A Wonderful Life, The Family Stone, Trapped In Paradise (suggested by the BF), and a slew of others I’ll be watching thanks to Moviefone’s blog entry.

3. Get Christmas shopping done well before Christmas.


I have a bit of a problem with waiting until the last minute to start Christmas shopping and then I’m in the throes of total chaos kicking myself. Not because I’m in the chaos (I kinda like being with other “last-minuters”) but because it takes circling 30 minutes just to find a parking space to even get in the door! Then again, I do tend to get the most creative and inspired when under pressure. Here’s an actual picture I took of the Westfield Culver City mall 2 Christmas’ ago on December 23rd (on my like 1 megapixel Blackberry I had at the time). What the heck was I doing in a mall 2 days before Christmas? This year, thanks to Pinterest’s awesome new secret boards; I’ll be visually prepared, organized, and done in a more timely manner…December 22nd, the latest. 🙂

4. Bake something festive.

1-Blog Pics{Photos courtesy of Pinterest and someone who stole them from someone else, who stole from someone else, etc..}.

I can’t decide if it will be cupcakes, brownies, or cookies – but they better look like snowmen, Christmas trees, a star, or something. These Pinterest photos I’ve been collecting (since like July) give you an idea of what I’m talking about!

5. Lots of Hot Cocoa.


Again, I started this to-do already. My first official hot chocolate of the season, complete with whipped cream, captured above.

6. Be present.

Literally, be present. Not in a gift giving sense, but to really slow down and enjoy this time of year: the weather, the decorations while walking the street, my closet full of scarves, holding warm beverages, smiling at strangers, running up my credit card, parties, movies, shopping, wrapping presents, listening to Christmas music, and spending time with people I love to be around.

These are my Christmas to-do’s. I’ll report back after the holidays.



Amoeba Music

Location: 6400 Sunset Boulevard, Hollywood

I don’t care how much more convenient, cheap, and cool it is to go digital; I’ll always be a fan of physically being around CDs, DVDs, and books. Yes, I love my iPod as much as the next music fiend and rarely play CDs in my car anymore; and yes, I smile to myself whenever something on-demand is instantly streaming on my screen with the click of a button; but there’s still something so enduring and solid about the real thing.

Amoeba Music needs no introduction. I’ve been here more times than I can count. It’s one of the few remaining places you can head to in L.A. to buy CDs, to scout for rare and used DVDs, or pick up an LP for your record player. Part of the fun here is just in the atmosphere, the simple elation of being around such a vast collection of art in its many forms. It’s cluttered (in a good way – makes you feel like you can find anything or that you’re digging for treasure), has that “I’m an independent record store” old dusty smell, and while the new stuff can be on the pricey side, this place rocks when it comes to hard to find titles.

My only complaint and continued frustration is that they don’t let you bring beverages in the store. Hello!?! How much more fun would this place be if you could peruse thousands of titles while sipping an iced latte? I’d sure spend more money here if I could. Caffeine affects the body like that.

Thanks to an awesome Groupon find passed my way, I spent an hour on Saturday afternoon sifting through new and used DVDs and Blu-Rays to update my collection. The problem with Amoeba is that you walk in with an idea of what you want, but then you start flipping through the inventory and get side-tracked (owning “Death Becomes Her” on DVD would be real treat once I thought about it!).

In the end, I had 4 movies I was trying to decide on and only a $30 credit to use. I walked out with two films that gave me lots to laugh and think about last year that I knew would get plenty of rotation in my Blu-Ray player: Friends with Kids and 50/50.