Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Four Reasons Hopdoddy Burger Bar Rocks

Thrillist, Zagat, CultureMap, and pretty much every media outlet in town has spent time crafting their list of Best Burgers. The bottom line is that there is no shortage of options in Dallas for a good great burger. One of my personal favorites is Hopdoddy Burger Bar. Here are four reasons I think Hopdoddy's rocks:

Cast of #RHOD Hits The Big Apple For The Season One Reunion

Episode 6 of the Real Housewives of Dallas aired last night giving us a glimpse at Aaron Hendra's concert at the House of Blues, Brandi Redmond's family turmoil over her brother's attempted suicide and a goth State Fair-themed Frito Chili Pie party hosted by Heidi 'Effin Dillon. Click here to read a complete recap of Aaron's Light Up Tomorrow event from last April and see lots of fun photos from the night - it was amazing. Even though we still have 4 more episodes to go, the ladies are already on their way to NYC to film the Season One Reunion with Bravo boss Andy Cohen. Cary and Mark Deuber were the first to hit NYC. The couple flew out Sunday to enjoy the Big Apple for a few days before the reunion films on Wednesday. The couple loaded up on calories at hot spots Eleven Madison Park and Le Bernardin - but have no fear - our darling yogi "crushed it" training with Hilary Writes at Barry's Boot Camp on Monday. I have no doubt that she will look lean and mean for the taping. The rest of the cast flew out today and taping will be a 12-hour marathon session taking place on Wednesday. May the force be with them. Cary and Stephanie are putting their PR firm to work and have them booking press appearances while they are in the Big Apple. Cary visited with Huffington Post today while Stephanie gave an interview to Women's' Health magazine. I've seen the remaining episodes and there is a LOT to be talked about at the reunion. I am fully expecting my phone to blow up tomorrow with texts from the girls about how the taping is going, so stay tuned...

Monday, May 23, 2016

9-Year Old Maya Delgado Launches HeARTS of Maya To Fund Arts Education For Children

From a young age, 9-year-old Maya Delgado has had a love of the performing arts and tells people she was “born to entertain and make people smile.” While most kids her age are playing video games or riding their bikes around the neighborhood, Maya spends her time receiving training in voice, guitar, songwriting, stage presence, choreography, acting, voice-over, musicals, theater and improv. Whew, I'm tired just typing all that out! Maya is particularly committed to performing for causes that support our military and has performed the National Anthem and provided entertainment for Snowball Express; serving Children of our Fallen Military Heroes, Dallas Stars; games for military families and veterans, America’s Future Series 5-Star Awards Military Symposium among many others. This little spitfire has recently launched a new charitable foundation called HeARTS of Maya, a 501c3 non-profit that she personally founded and created. The mission of HeARTS of Maya is to share Maya’s love of the arts by providing educational scholarships to youth in financial need who demonstrate a desire to pursue music, acting, and/or dance.

Thursday, May 19, 2016

Rethinking The Business of Blogging

At a blogger party for the opening of Park Lane shops in November 2010 with fellow mommy bloggers. 

Dear OSC reader,

Yesterday, I saw a tweet from Time magazine promoting an article they had published about mommy blogger Josi Denise's recent decision to stop blogging. In the article, Josi basically has a Jerry Maguire moment -  a breakdown of sorts from the mental and physical exhaustion of blogging - and calls for other bloggers to revolt from the oppression of the business of blogging and "just quit". It struck a chord in me, because I too have moments of blogger exhaustion. I've never wanted to quit, but I often feel the pressure of having to perform for advertisers while trying to not look like I'm selling out to readers. And I definitely have lots of moments of feeling like I am failing: failing my family because dinner's not on the table due to the fact that I am at another event or fashion show, failing as a friend because I'm spread too thin to really pay attention to what's happening in the lives of those around me, failing my job - both as a blogger and a publicist - because there are never enough hours in the day to get it all done and failing myself because I always feel like I could do better, be better if there was just... more... time. But there never is.

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Four Seasons Lays Down The LAW

Touch your mouse to the photo below to scroll through a gallery of photos from this event: LAW at Four Seasons at Las Colinas
photo c/s Four Seasons Resort and Club Dallas at Las Colinas

Last month, Four Seasons Resort and Club Dallas at Las Colinas debuted a new signature casual restaurant called LAW (which stands for Land, Air, and Water) featuring a bold taste of Texas using the finest ingredients sourced from the Lone Star State. I accepted their invitation to come out for a visit and was pleased to see the former Cafe On The Green space decor now feature dark hard wood floors, rich leathers and suedes throughout the space, along with a color palette of neutrals, camel and mahogany. Custom lighting, Texas artwork, wall décor and furnishings complement the design, as well as offer up a native and comfortable feel in communal lounge and dining areas. It feels manly without being too masculine and blends in nicely with the vibe of the hotel. LAW Restaurant has a robust menu of nostalgic favorites offering fresh poultry, meats, and fish sourced directly from Texas farms, fisheries and ranches. Featured dinner items include tomahawk bone-in rib eye steak, BBQ Berkshire pork rib tower, A Bar N Ranch wagyu flank steak, Shiner Bock and sweet onion soup, whole beer can chicken, stuffed quail and chorizo-cornbread waffle, Copper Shoals Farms red fish, homestead grits, and Amelias Farm tomato and burrata cheese salad with Texas olive oil. The dessert menu features Texas bourbon bread pudding and bitter chocolate molten cake, among other Texas classics. The restaurant offers a fun yet sophisticated Texas chic environment, is open seven days a week for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and Sunday brunch.

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Real Housewives Of Dallas Prep For Season One Reunion

Fans and critics of the Real Housewives of Dallas have been speculating on the life span of the franchise pretty much from the minute casting was announced. The show has hobbled through its first season with lackluster ratings, making a second season seem questionable at this point. Well, I have good news and bad news on this topic. The good news is that a Season One Reunion is taking place! Today, tweets from Tiffany Hendra and LeeAnne Locken confirm what I've been hearing for weeks and Andy Cohen took to Facebook to ask for questions:

Art Ball 2016: Art + Architecture

Touch your mouse to the photo below to scroll through a gallery of photos from this event:
Art Ball 2016: Art + Architecture
Photos c/o Tamytha Cameron and Rhi Lee

The Dallas Museum of Art (DMA) hosted Art Ball 2016: Art + Architecture with more than 400 guests on Saturday, April 23, 2016, at the Dallas Museum of Art. Ann and David Sutherland served as this year’s Art Ball Co-chairs. Guests arrived to a red architectural display of the Dallas skyline and an oversized blueprint of the DMA that served as a step and repeat. During the cocktail hour, guests sipped on mixology cocktails while they bid on an eclectic mix of experiences, art and gorgeous decorative items curated by Silent Auction Chair, Gonzalo Bueno. Top bidding was on Nicolas Alquin’s Diapason sculpture, featuring old oak with burned patina and lime, and a Presidential Live Oak, grown at the prestigious ranch of President George W. Bush and First Lady Laura Bush in Crawford, Texas. At 7:45 p.m., a 30-foot tall curtain dramatically opened revealing another Todd Events masterpiece of contemporary reds, greens, and yellows. Sprays of yellow florals, moss drenched chandeliers, and oversized head tables in the shape of a plus sign tied the room into a sensory wonderland.

Monday, May 16, 2016

Real Housewives of Dallas Memes From Episode 6: Locken Loaded (May 16, 2016)

Bravo titled this episode "Locken Loaded" but I am calling it "Desperately Seeking Solace". This episode was such a downer that there was literally not one funny quip to pull from. NOT ONE. 🔫 This was not a meme-tastic episode. The show was primarily about Brandi's unhappiness in her marriage. Brandi and Bryan had a date night at Texas de Brazil where she confronted him about blowing off the barbecue she hosted for her estranged grandfather. 🍸 Brian was a total "douche" and stared a hole through Brandi as she attempted to communicate about her feelings. Tiffany got pissed off at Marie's texts to her about LeeAnne's behavior and took LeeAnne to confront her about the fact that Marie had been spreading gossip behind LeeAnne’s back. Travis tried to micromanage Stephanie’s plans to redecorate four-year-old Cruz’s bedroom, to which I say, "There's only room for one metrosexual man on this show and it's Mark!" The only bright spot in this episode was Mark's photoshoot of Cary for their website in a bid to attract more business. Raise your hand if you felt completely inadequate looking at Cary's naked body while eating a pint of ice cream. ☝🏼
Next week... I'm baaaaack! Watch for my appearance at Aaron and Tiffany's charity concert at the House of Blues. If you want an insiders look at that event, click here to go back in time. Tune in to the Real Housewives of Dallas every Monday at 10/9c on Bravo.

Boots and Blessings Gala Raises Funds For Terminally Ill Young Mothers

Touch your mouse to the photo below to scroll through a gallery of photos from this event: Ally's Wish Boot & Blessings Gala 2016
photos c/o Bob Manzano

On April 30, 2016, Ally’s Wish hosted its Second Annual Boots & Blessings Gala at Gilley’s Dallas. With the combined efforts of honorary chair Tricia Sims and gala chair Laura Downing, the country chic affair garnered funds to grant wishes for young mothers battling terminal illnesses in North Texas and across the country.  Among those in attendance were Cathy and Tommy Vieth, Tom Irwin, Kersten Rettig, Ese Azenabor, Melissa and Bob Rountree, Scott and Kunthear Douglas and special guest and current Ally’s Wish mom, Tanya Norris. A western-themed event always has guests walking in happy not to be in stilettos and ties! The Breckenridge Band was a huge hit with the crowd, singing country hits from George Strait to Blake Shelton, and teaching line dances to the more than 300 guests. With drinks in hand, courtesy of Candy’s Signature Cocktails and Community Beer Company, guests vied for more than 150 items at the silent auction tables. Emcee and Real Housewives of Dallas star LeeAnne Locken used her best negotiating skills to peel bidders away from the silent auction tables, in exchange for the dinner tables. Guests noshed on a grand Texas BBQ buffet, complete with apple cobbler and vanilla ice cream as Ally’s Wish founders Missy Phipps, Melissa Cary, Holly Reed and Heather Bryan shared the history and mission of their 2-year-old organization which has raised more than $150,000 and granted 17 wishes to date. Honorary chair Tricia Sims and gala chair Laura Downing thanked sponsors and spoke of their passion for the non-profit.

9th Annual Appetite For Advocacy Luncheon Features TED Talks Star Brene Brown

Touch your mouse to the photo below to scroll through a gallery of photos from this event: 9th Annual Appetite For Advocacy Luncheon
photos c/o Kristina Bowman

The Dallas Children’s Advocacy Center’s (DCAC) 9th annual Appetite for Advocacy luncheon was held on April 26, 2016 at the Sheraton Hotel Dallas. Event emcee, Katy Blakey, NBC 5 anchor and reporter introduced TED talk phenomenon and keynote speaker Brené Brown who immediately captivated the audience with her humor and extraordinary relatability. Brené’s message on vulnerability, courage, worthiness, and shame reminded guests that each of them can shoulder their share of the burden of child abuse, big or small, so that one person doesn't have to bear it all. Event co-chairs Paula Richmond and Megan Steinbach welcomed the nearly 1,600 guests and painted a picture of the typical client served by the Dallas Children’s Advocacy Center - a 9-year-old girl who has been sexually abused by someone she knows and trusts. “While her peers have been memorizing state capitals and discovering what vinegar does to baking soda, she has endured abuse more heinous than many of us would allow our minds to imagine.” Their story ended on a hopeful note, describing how the average DCAC client moves through therapy and “no longer lives as a victim of the abuse she’s suffered…instead she is a survivor, empowered to walk in freedom.” The event raised more than $325,000 for the Dallas Children’s Advocacy Center’s mission to improve the lives of abused children and to provide national leadership on child abuse issues.