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FROM NYC TO NO PLACE TO GO BUT MARS ‘N BETTER TV

Been a ‘better’ few days…so to speak…this week.  For one, i ppeared on BETTER TV with my bud and it’s co-host Audra Lowe.  

home–amp–garden2-home–amp–garden-cleaning-secrets

I always love ‘spreading my glove’ of housewifely wit ‘n wisdom  because of the folks on and off camera and particularly  Audra.  She and I bonded a few years back when she was having her first child and who is THE MOST adorable baby girl.  Audra is one of the real peeps in this world, she is incredibly genuine, always has a welcoming smile and put’s being a human being before anything else.  And, though we see each other half a dozen times a year, when we do it’s like seeing an old friend you’ve grown up with and  seems like no time has passed when we reconnect.  

The other ‘better’ part of the week was that my buds at MamaDramaNY once again invited me to see a quirky yet incredibly timely one man show called “NO PLACE TO GO” at the Public Theatre in NYC…It’s a clever and irreverant musical journey starring Ethan Lipton who is also the show’s creator, writer and chief bottle washer (kidding).  The show’s premise is that Ethan’s company is relocating from New York to Mars…yes Mars and Ethan really doesn’t want to go…can you blame him? But what I enjoyed most about it aside from the scruffy Woody Allen meets Dylan with a better voice Ethan and the amazing base, guitar and sax trio behind him, (forgive I know this is a run on sentence and my college English professor would kill me!) was how he balanced the woes of the economy, politics and personal angst in an entertaining and uplifting way with lines like “Anxiety is just excitement in disguise” to lyrics/songs like “Three Tear Plan” which literally is about his plan to ‘cry, weep, then go to sleep”….

to LOL songs like “Shit Storm Coming”.  

Both funny and philosophical, No Where to Go was tons ‘better’ and far more original then many shows I’ve seen on THE GREAT WHITE WAY so please make your way to this limited run production and support Public Theatre in NY at Joe’s Pub if you’re in town…Food and drinks were terrif there too! Spread the glove! 



GETTING INTO THE GROOVE WITH SPRING ALIVE AND ABBOTT ‘N COSTELLO

Last eve my best bud Marla, Franky, Doug and  I ventured into NYC to see an Off Off Off B’way musical called Spring Alive starring Spring Groove (I know quite a name!) which I learned about and saw thanks to Mamma Drama NY’s co-owners Erin Leigh Peck and Holly Fink.  

The show is a one act, one person terrific musical  of one Jewish woman’s journey/evolution from a typical NY gal to a rasta haired Yogi ….Or as the booklet described, its the ‘sing, pray, love’ version of  the wonderful book, “Eat, Pray, Love“.  Marla loved it and could relate totally as she’s a certified Yoga instructor.  I on the other hand am not a Yoga person and though I have dabbled in it my idea of doing The Sun Breath or Crouching Dog Position(forgive me if I’ve got the name of that pose wrong) is to crouch on my couch breathing in the bouquet of a fine wine..But i love theatre and particularly entertainment that elevates and inspires which is exactly what Spring did…along with an ensemble of dancers who brought another level of calm, grace and energy to the production.

o

Spring de joie...love those pants want a pair

But part of the fun of the eve was simply trying to find the theatre after eating at a hip enough restaurant called “Inoteca” located on the Lower East Side of Manhattan. Not only was the food and wine terrific but Marla and I agreed that the lighting was perfect too:  as in low enough to make one look good no matter how tired or over 30 you are!

Anyway,  pleasantly stuffed and with a slight buzz on ’twas time to find the theatre…As you may be aware NYC is filled with theaters all over the place and peeps trying to make it here cause as  Liza Minnelli has sung time ‘n time again if “You make it here, you’ll make it anywhere.  It’s up to you .New York. New York”. And, while most of us are familiar with Broadway shows and some off broadway hits like “The Fantastics“, there are lots of hopeful gems like Spring Alive which are Off Off Off Broadway.  And, for we New Jerseyians who were off, off, off our beaten path, we couldn’t find  the theatre since it had a dual address: Dawson Place and 179 A Christie Street. So as time tick ticked and we walked up and down the street again and again, each of us taking turns asking ‘where’s dawson”, “who said it was on Christie” , I felt like we were somehow living a version of Abbott & Costello‘s famous baseball routine “who’s on first?”

Now, past 8:00 and curtain time, we decided  to call for help. Marla buzzed her son  Zach whom lives nearby and is, I might add, the coolest twenty something year ole, successful hard-working hipster living the NYC dream that I know and have known since he was five. Well, within seconds,  Zach quickly pointed us in the right direction which was  right across the street from where we were standing!!!

But we weren’t home free yet since being late we were directed to the back stage entrance.  As we went down the stairs, I began to get that ‘something’s not right here’ feeling, and did my own version of crouching dog laughing when I saw that the next door said “Stage Members Only”.   At this point, my wine buzz now a distant memory, we decided to throw caution to the wind and hope the door didn’t lead us to Spring on stage and our Off Off Off Broadway debut.  Well, the good news is it didn’t.  Nope it led us onto the balcony and we took our seats without disturbing anyone.  Within seconds we settled into the calm and got into the Groove with Spring. And, the rest as they say is Namasta…Spread the glove!


KARIM RASHAD, BUBBLY IN PINK ‘N ENJOYING MORE W/LESS

Happy Over the Hump Wednesday!

Went to the launch party last night for uber hip and talented English/Egyptian designer Karim Rashid at one of the Bo Concept stores in NYC.   As an accidental New Jersey housewife, Karim and my world don’t meet often these days but when I was invited by my good bud and coincidentally their fab publicist Dolly Hiller I had to go.  For my fellow suburban moms, Karim is THE NAME in interior design, furniture, lighting and art with  permanent collections in 15 museums world wide including MoMA in NYC…So attending this soiree was a no brainer and a perfect excuse for a nite out!

Ok, so let’s begin with the man himself, Rashid…there he was standing around 6’4′ give or take an inch or two in a pink suit..yup pink…

Rashad loves pink cause he loves it’s energy, beauty and it’s positive sense/love of life.  And, how could I not immediately bond and love the work of a person who’s fave colors are the same as mine…pink and apple green!  Just wish i had know cause i would have worn my signature pink gloves and brought a pair for him!   

Rashad  loves pink so much he’s designed a loveseat for Veuve Clicquot Rose Champagne…

And, a limited edition chandelier cooler. My personal fave 

For any of my loved ones n fam reading this and wondering what to give me as a housewarming gift someday wonder no longer …BTW: Worry not, I’ll provide the bubbly and “D” studly handler for the cooler…LOL!

Now to last eve and his newest design tour de force “The Ottawa Collection”.  It celebrates his 30 years of design. Sleek, chic, affordable and oh so easy to maintain is the best way to describe this clearly urban collection that would have been perfect way back when I was a NYC working gal. Rashid described it to me as ‘sensual, calming and pleasurable without excess because at the end of the day less is more”  which is how i’m trying to live my life these days and what my whole “Living the Rid Life” (www.juliestips.com ) is all about. Here a few pix from the collection and you can learn and see mucho more by visiting his site http://www.karimrashid.com/ 

Jigsaw vases...how cool!

Love the rug! Won't show dirt!

After chatting with Rashim, the clock ticking and my free time running out,  I decided to enjoy the moment, feel the calm, the sensuality and pretend I was that NYC single working gal from days gone by.  So I kicked backed, put my feet up and enjoyed a glass of bubbly  because as RAshid said ‘at the end of the day less is more’ …Got that right! Spread the Glove!


ALL I WANNA DO IS NJOY SHERYL CROW, SURI, VUE ‘N BREWS

As moms, wives, working women or just over-scheduled and over-worked peeps in general, we rarely have the luxury or feeling that someone is there taking care of us.  I guess that’s why folks at Apple now feature Suri–our very own personal assistant on their new Apple 4S.  And, god knows we could all use someone to remind us of our kid’s dental appointment: call, email or text our significant other when we’re running late or maybe if I can find time sched a hair coloring appointment before those greys over populate! 

This is where and why technology is truly a good thing making me life easier, and not something that confuses the heck outta me since in addition to being known as The Accidental Housewife, I am also known as The Queen of Technological Darkness!  Nope Suri has made me feel special.  And, a few weeks back I shared another techy ‘good thing’: my new LG Hom-Bot which stays in its little charging station on call to vacuum my house without me lifting a finger.  Plus, it can bring me a martini or cup of coffee…Life is good!  

And, now I found my latest ‘make my life easier and tastier’ techy must have… 

Enjoying a cup of fresh VUE-brewed cappuccino with Michelle Stacy, Pres of Keurig!Mmmm Mmmm Yum!

See last eve I attended a launch party for the new Keurig VUE single cup coffee maker.  Now, i don’t know about you but my day just doesn’t quite start off right without that first cup of coffee which i generally have to reheat 2-3 times since i’m too busy focusing on getting my son up and fed for school.  Needless to say over-reheated coffee with the milk forming a thin waxy-like top isn’t exactly that yummy, ‘get my day going’ cup of java!  And, then if i’m running late which is just about every day, I  try to take a cup with me as I shuttle myself or my son in days gone by before he got his license (yeah chaufeur duties relieved!) and it be cold.  Yuk! 

But last nite I met Suri and Bot’s ‘new take care of Julie’ mate Vue…Now, please note i have tried several single cup coffee makers and generally have been disappointed since the coffee tastes weak, cools off too fast when i add my 1/2 and 1/2 and though I’m no Sheryl Crow  when it comes to being green (whom i love by the way as an artist and performer)–she had suggested we portion  toilet paper which for those of us with kids might save the forest but not the amount of laundry we’d be doing and thus not water nor energy conservation…The point here is I try to do what I can and if it fits into my everyday lifestyle all the better and the VUE pods  are recyclable so it’s mindless mother earth friendly! Love that!

So my fellow overworked, overscheduled housewives, check it out,  coffee, tea, hot, cold Keurig’s new VUE has a brew for you so as Sheryl sings “all i wanna do’ is enjoy a yummy cup of brew along with Suri and Bot! Happy weekend all…Spread the glove…

LOVE THE STAIN YOUR WITH ‘n Ashton Kutcher, Jessica Alba, Bradley Cooper, Julie Roberts….

Happy Valentine’s Day all! ‘Tis wonderful that love is in the air and wanted to share this piece as I do every V-day! 

So whether it’s your first date, love of your life, one of the millions who pop the ‘will you marry’ question, dine alone or have been there done that for some time, Valentine’s Day can muster the romantic in you from sip to sleep.  Here are a few simple ways to deal with those heartfelt  ‘accidental’ stains that unlike love are not what we want to last! And BTW, if you haven’t seen the flick “Valentine’s Day” rent, DVR or Netflix it…it’s got all the peeps that make for good eye candy for any age and dreaming of happily ever after V-day including Ashton Kutcher, Julia Roberts, Bradley Cooper, Eric Dane (my personal fave Grey’s Anatomy studly guy!), Patrick Dempsey (second to Eric:) Jessica Alba, Jessica Biel, Anne Hathaway, Taylor Lautner, Taylor Swift, Shirley McClaine and on and on

  • LIPSTICK:  With all that lip locking, there is bound to be some lipstick ending up on your man’s collar.  Don’t regret those kisses, put a dollop of non-gel shaving cream on those hot lip marks, dab and rinse with club soda or water.  Continue but now go ‘au natural’!
  • CHOCOLATE:  As Forest Gump said so eloquently, “I ‘m not a smart man . . . but I know what love is” .  He also said that  his momma believed “life is like a box of chocolates. You never know what you’re gonna get.” http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0109830/quotes ! So now that your sweetie’s satisfied your sweet tooth and you’ve consumed that whole heart shaped box of love i.e. chocolates, you also got what you didn’t expect:  a glob on that sexy white silk blouse..  So grab some clear hand sanitizer, squeeze some on and dab out  the stain with a towel or micro-fiber cloth and switch to popcorn!  Tide to Go is also terrif in a pinch! 
  • STRAWBERRIES:  Nothing says “I Love You” like chocolate covered strawberries  but no one likes a strawberry stain.  Remove any access strawberry from the article of clothing with a spoon or knife, then  as your  touching up your doo, take aim with your aerosol can of hairspray and spritz the stain to remove.
  • SWEAT STAINS:  Valentine’s Day is one of the most popular days to ‘pop’ the big question as in ‘will you marry me’.  But, alas, your nerves from popping the big question, or being the one being popped to can cause one to sweat.  Here’s an easy RX!  Just get out a big bowl,  pour in enough warm water to cover the stain, and hand crush 2-6 aspirin tablets into the bowl.  Once dissolved, put your white machine washable dress or tee shirt into it and let sit 2-4 hours.  No problemo if you get distracted calling all your loved ones to announce the big news and leave it overnight!  Then launder par usual.  Your nerves and shirt will feel and look better in the morning!
  • RED WINE:  If you spill some red wine maybe that will teach you to go for  the white wine!  That’s right, first run some cool water through the stain , then a bit of salt to help life and finish with some white wine.  Then for the rest of the eve, switch to clear libations to avoid any further mishaps! 
  • LOVE STAINS:  You want of course to be safe and use proper protection and precautions but if some of the love escapes ‘accidentally’ or prematurely onto your white sheets or boxers,  just use some hydrogen peroxide which is a natural bleaching agent so don’t use it on anything dark.  Then throw it in the laundry and go back to kissing for a bit! REMEMBER: never use hot water to soak or wash the stain, as hot water will help set a majority of protein-based stains. 
    • BONUS TIP:  Dealing with a creaky bed and don’t want to your neighbors or worse your kiddies hearing every intimate detail, sprinkle baby powder in all the joints so they don’t rub and make noise.  Also put on some romantic music and blast just in case! 
Spread the glove…safely and smartly please 🙂

TGIF: CHILLING WITH BOND, VODKA ‘N THE 50’S HOUSEWIFE

Yeah it’s Friday and I’m getting close to putting down ye old cell phone and Swiffer and picking up my favorite Happy Hour cocktail.  But first I wanted to share ‘the dirt’ on my favorite TGIF elixer…a dirty vodka martini! (and by the way for those who missed it I showed a new way to clean and ‘tini in this UTUbe video earlier in the week so check it out when you can )  

I truly enjoy vodka martinis not just cause they taste good but because I feel like I’m paying homage to the 50’s housewife.  These June Cleaver types would have one stirred up, waiting for their ‘hard-working husband’ since her daily tasks were considered insignificant and not in need of ‘chilling’.

That was then thank ye gods! This is now and my dirty martini also reflects my sanity saving home-keeping mantra and attitude that a little dirt never hurt anyone!

(I also love them because if you have one or serve them upon entry to adult guests your home looks a lot cleaner, neater and your food tastes Marthesque…well maybe not quite but it’s good enough J)

And, believe it or not it’s key ingredient vodka (which I prefer to gin)  is a terrific home-keeping multi-tasker! That’s right in addition to being yum in my martini, I also use vodka in the following ways:  

PLEASE NOTE:  If you drink the expensive stuff you might want to consider buying a cheaper brand for these tasks.  And, hey if you’re like me, after one martini you probably won’t be able to tell the difference so why waste the good stuff!

  • Natural cleaner/sanitizer : Put some in a bottle and spray counters and other hard surfaces
  • Flower perker upper: Add a shot when your flowers start to droop
  • Jewelry sparkler: Put diamonds, platinum and any non-pourous stone in a shot for a few minutes, then use a toothbrush to clean
  • Botox alternative:  Pour some on a cotton ball and dab on face to tighten pores

And  for those of you who love a lil trivia and folklore here’s the ‘dirt’ on the origins of ye ole martini:

Martinis were originally called a Martinez since a version of it was first served in the late 1800’s to gold prospectors in Martinez, California – Guess it helped make those rocks look golden and kept their prospects bright!  It’ real popularity though seemed to come during prohibition since whiskey required longer aging and distillers couldn’t keep up with the demand at speakeasies.  So gin, became a fave alternative. 

Then the famed children’s author E.B. White of  Charlotte’s Web and Stuart Little fame, referred to it as the ‘perfect elixer’. 

 

H.L. Mencken called it “the only American invention as perfect as the sonnet.  

And, of course, Sean Connery my favorite Bond…that’s James Bond, put a new spin on it by switching its main ingredient from gin to vodka (thank you JamesJ ) and asking for it ‘shaken not stirred.”

So there you have it and now it’s time to finish my chores that bore before the strike of Happy Hour! Happy TGIF…Spread the glove!