Thursday, May 28, 2015

Enhance Your Summer Beauty Style With Braiding Classes at La Bichette

Hairstyles come and go but braids have been a part of our beauty culture for thousands of years. From African cornrows to Grecian goddesses to Native American indians, braids have made appearances on the heads of men and women throughout history indicating everything from utility to glamor, social status to ethnicity, marital status to even religious affiliation. In modern times, hairstyles aren’t quite so serious but one thing hasn’t changed: braids are cool. To help your little fashionista hone her budding style, La Bichette: Blow Dry & Makeup Atelier is offering summer braid classes perfect for a little girls, tweens and teenagers.

Vogel Alcove’s Inaugural YPO Gala Takes Flight

Vogel Alcove’s Inaugural YPO Gala Takes Flight
contributed by Sevi Ware

On Saturday, May 16, 2015, Flight Young Professionals Organization gathered for an evening of celebration with their 2015 Gala – Let Your Dreams Take Flight. Hosted at the historical Hall of State in Fair Park, this inaugural gala captured the essences of giving back to their members after a full year of serving Vogel Alcove. Upon arrival, guests were invited to enjoy a cocktail reception with Minibar along with showing their playful sides with A&K Photobooths to commemorate the evening’s festivities. Flight YPO Presidents, Mary Lyons and Chrystal Morgan, praised the hard work and dedication of a successful first full year as an organization. They illuminated that this gala was a celebration of their members’ success and each member played a huge role that couldn’t have happened without them. Flight’s first year encompassed building a playground, organizing supplies, creating traditions, and raising more than $60,000 for Vogel Alcove. With more than 100 members and growing, Flight has a collaborative role in doing their part to end the cycle of homelessness in Dallas. Honoring the 2014-2015 Board Member and General Member of the year, Lauren Halsey and Josh Webb, followed this rousing dedication, for all of the work they contributed during the year.

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Oh So Enchanting: Lake Austin Spa and Resort

You and I... we may be different (married/single, rich/poor, black/white, kids/no kids) but at our core I believe that all people have pretty much the same wants and desires. Primarily, we all want to connect on a meaningful level and feel loved, accepted and appreciated for who we are. These days the world moves so fast that I find it hard to slow down and connect with myself, much less other people. Social media is meant to connect us but I find myself feeling less connected than ever, partly because we don't make the time to spend quality time with each other. I mean, I already know your every move because I see it on social media, so why would we waste time actually sitting down over lunch to talk!? Anyone else feel that way? Lake Austin Spa & Resort recently invited me down for a few days and said I could bring a friend, so I decided to use the opportunity to reconnect with the one of the most important people in my world - my Mom.

Enjoying nature over a cup of coffee on my birthday 
If you haven't been to this magnificent slice of heaven, let me tell you why you need to have this place on bucket list... Lake Austin Spa Resort is nestled on 19 lakefront acres in Central Texas’ legendary Hill Country. The 40-room boutique resort offers delicious meals prepared from the resort’s own organic gardens and a 25,000 square foot spa where you can choose from more than 100 spa treatments.

I stayed in one of the fourteen Luxury Lakeview Rooms which are equipped with retractable awnings and Brown Jordan furnishings on the patio that allow you to enjoy spectacular views of the lake. Almost all the rooms offer a lake front view, all have comfy beds, cushy robes, flat screen TVs and yummy soaps and lotions. Don't miss the boutique store inside the resort. They have the cutest clothing and accessories! You know I'd find a way to fit shopping in there...

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Dallas Dweller: Tiffany Hendra

Dallas is full of colorful characters. There are those you see monthly in the society pages, whose stories are legendary in this town. But, this feature is inspired by the people that I think you should know more about because of their fabulous style, interesting back-story or amazing accomplishments.  Dallas Dweller seeks to introduce you to these fabulous faces. Tiffany Hendra is a wife, TV host, beauty & style expert and lifestyle mentor to women of all ages. She's on a mission to help the ladies of Dallas and women around the world discover their true beauty - inside and out.

Dallas Dweller: Tiffany Hendra
by Cynthia Smoot

Aaron and Tiffany Hendra at House of Blues Foundation Room (May 19, 2015) photo by Thomas Garza

In the world of fashion it is easy to get caught up in superficial beauty and shallow thinking based on looks and things. For many years Tiffany Hendra claims she did not love herself, had low self-worth and lived a shame-based existence. Her “mess became her message" and she now shares her years of experience on the catwalk through her fabulous blog called Sanctuary of Style. "Every woman wants to be confident & comfortable in her skin and live life on her terms, all while looking her best. Too many women are only dreaming of a vibrant & exciting life instead of actually living it. That’s why all these glamorous housewives reality shows are so popular. Women are watching other people living a fabulous life with the belief that they are not worthy of living it too. I’m sick of seeing women living life below their potential! I was one of them for a very long time. If I can help women walk confident in their power and begin living the life they deserve… then mission accomplished," says Tiffany.  "On SOS, I share my two-cents, tips and tricks on everything women are interested in from beauty, skincare, shopping, personal style, and health and wellness, but I also focus on spiritual nourishment - which I call 'inner beauty' tips. A great haircut, fitting into our skinny jeans and rockin’ the latest Louis Vuitton handbag is fabulous, but without a radiant and peaceful spirit those external things really do not matter."

Thursday, May 21, 2015

Oh So Tasty: CBD Provisions

Executive Chef Richard Blankenship has recently taken the helm at CBD Provisions and brought with him a fresh perspective to the venue's modern Texas cuisine, with a focus on locally-driven, seasonal ingredients and a “nose-to-tail” cooking. The name comes from its Central Business District address, in case you were wondering. I was recently invited in to see how Richard has added his own personal flair to the menu. Among his changes? The new “Provisions” section, offers a range of items meant to be shared with a group, served with a loaf of housemade sourdough bread. Options include Chicken Liver Mousse with pepper jelly, Spicy Oil-Cured Peas with chile de arbol and mint, and Preserved Shitake Mushrooms with fried rosemary Chef’s Texas Charcuterie Board, featuring a variety of smoked Texas meats including German garlic sausages and “urban BBQ” tri-tip; Texas cheddar pimento cheese; a mix of bread and butter-style pickles; pickled jalapeños; housemade mustards; and housemade potato bread. Larger format dishes including the roasted Windy Meadows Chicken with Nelson’s greens and preserved citrus, and Mediterranean-inspired Braised Lamb Shoulder with fresh chickpeas and harissa yogurt.

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Join Me Wednesday, May 27 at Haven To Shop For A Cause

I hope you'll join me next Wed, May 27 to celebrate the 3d Anniversary of Haven Boutique​ in Uptown. There will be sips and bites, fun fashions from Kelly Wynne and Law Designs and photo opps. A percentage of sales from the evening will benefit Vogel Alcove​. Let's party! And shop. Haven is located at 2422 Allen St, Dallas, TX 75204. (214) 969-1005.

Monday, May 18, 2015

Accessorize Your Face with Firmoo

Sponsored post:

Me and my mini-me at Hillstone last week wearing my new
Firmoo frames (F048)
I recently celebrated my birthday and I have mixed feelings about it. I turned 48 this year and now that I'm staring 50 in the face, racing towards that milestone is hardly cause to dance a jig - in my opinion. My 40s have been great but honestly, I'd like to just freeze time for a little bit. The worst thing about getting older is that you start to notice a physical decline. Your skin starts to lose elasticity and everything that used to be firm now has a slight jiggle to it. I could shoot myself up with fillers and (gads!) hit the gym... but (shrug) it's just easier to just whine about it. Another thing that's starting to change is my eyesight.

I had Lasik surgery in my early 30s. I always liked wearing glasses but once you have a baby you find that they tend to like to grab them and YANK them off your face - which can be quite painful. And expensive. At the time I had Lasik, my doctor told me that around my mid-40s I would probably have to have the procedure done again - that your eyes change with age and with that comes the need for a refresher. And here I am. I've been wearing glasses for a couple of years. I used to just need them for reading, and then I needed them during the day when I was on the computer, and now I find that any time I don't have them on the world is very hazy.

Thursday, May 14, 2015

Knife gives a whole new meaning to "dinner and a movie" with a new Sunday Cinema Series

My parents used to love going to the drive-in movie. These days, our cinema choices are usually confined to big-box theaters. This summer Knife at The Highland Dallas seeks to bring the movies back outdoors and give guests an open-air experience of food and film with a new culinary-themed Sunday Cinema Series. The first screening will take place on Sunday, May 17 with a screening of "Chef" on the outdoor patio at the restaurant. The series will continue on Sundays of select months in 2015 and with the purchase of each ticket, guests will enjoy themed gourmet bites by renowned Chef John Tesar and craft beer from Four Corners Brewing Company. Prominent guest speakers from the film and food industries will also speak before each screening.

"Chef," the story of a celebrated Los Angeles chef who quits his job to launch a food truck, will be the first film shown in Sunday Cinema Series from 8-11 p.m. on May 17. Tickets to "Chef" will include mini cuban and grilled cheese sandwiches, popcorn and two Four Corners brews, to be enjoyed before and during the screening. Knife's celebrated cuisine and crafted beverages by barman James Slater will also be available for purchase.

Knife Chef Partner John Tesar and Lee Papert, president & C.E.O. of the Dallas Film Society and executive director of the Dallas International Film Festival, will speak prior to the film about its impact on the culinary and restaurant industries. Papert joined the Dallas Film Society in December of 2011 after more than 12 years as a non-profit executive at a variety of Dallas-based arts organizations. He has volunteered with various arts and education organizations throughout Dallas for more than 20 years and is a Dallas native. Papert is also a graduate of the Dallas Chamber's Leadership Dallas program and the Business Council for the Arts' Leadership Arts program.

Following "Chef," "Big Night" will be shown on June 28, "Jiro Dreams of Sushi" on Sept. 20, "Julie and Julia" on Oct. 25 and "Sideways" on Nov. 15. Tickets will be priced at $35 per person and are inclusive of gratuity. $10 of each ticket sold will benefit the Dallas Film Society in support of bringing film, filmmakers and film education to the Dallas area. For more information or to purchase tickets please call Knife at (214) 443-9339. Knife is located at The Highland Hotel, 5300 E. Mockingbird Lane, Dallas, TX. 75206.

Southern Living Food Awards spotlights Frankie V's Kitchen

Pictured are the winners for Best Seasoning, Best Hot
Sauce, and Best Vinegar. Photo: Hector Sanchez
Southern Living, the authority on the Southern lifestyle, just announced the winners of the first-ever Southern Living Food Awards. Editors tasted more than 300 of the newest artisan products, whether they were jarred, baked or distilled, to find the best of the best. What they came up with is 24 of their favorite new Southern-made foods, from a gourmet take on pork rinds to a peppery honey that’s harvested by urban beekeepers.

We had one lone representative from Dallas! Let's give it up for Frankie V’s Kitchen who got a nod for their Habenero Infused Vinegar. The winners are featured in the June issue of the magazine, on newsstands May 22, and online at

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Oh So Cultural: DSO Download

Music Director Jaap van Zweden and the Dallas Symphony Orchestra (DSO) announce the release of Dvořák’s most popular and iconic work, Symphony No. 9, From the New World. The concert performance is now available as a digital download via iTunes, and other digital service providers.

The recording is the sixth by Jaap van Zweden and the Dallas Symphony available on the DSO Live label. This recording is supported in part by the Nancy P. and John G. Penson Dallas Symphony Orchestra Recording Fund. Popularly called the New World Symphony, Dvořák’s Symphony No. 9 was recorded live in concert January 16-18, 2014 in the Eugene McDermott Concert Hall of the Morton H. Meyerson Symphony Center in Dallas performed by Jaap van Zweden and the Dallas Symphony.

Of the performance, Scott Cantrell of The Dallas Morning News said, “The playing was amazing. To hear … was yet again to marvel at the wonders van Zweden … has worked with the orchestra.” Gregory Sullivan Isaacs on wrote, “It was revelatory…An exciting and memorable … performance.” “We wanted to release this recording of Dvorak’s ‘New World’ Symphony to coincide with the SOLUNA Festival and its theme Destination America,” said Jonathan Martin, President and CEO of the Dallas Symphony. “Dvorak’s use of folk themes from his time in America is beautiful and haunting, and it is this influence of the new land on this Czech composer that reflects the spirit of SOLUNA’s theme.” The album may be purchased at iTunes starting today at and at other digital retailers.