September Raves

By Tara Cushing (@TheBravoBlonde)

It’s fall ya’ll, and as much I try to protest the end of every summer, I always surprise myself with how much I really do enjoy this season. There are some wonderful smells, foods, events, and fashions that just don’t feel right any other time of year. On that note, here’s what I’m raving about this month.

Harry & David Pumpkin Macaroon Candle

Harry & David Pumpkin Macaroon Candle

Nothing is more fragrantly fall than anything pumpkin. It’s mandatory to burn pumpkin scented candles in my home each night from mid September to Thanksgiving. This year my pick is this pumpkin macaroon (yes macaroon, not macaron) scented candle from Harry & David. Even better was the price. I picked it up from Home Goods for $5.99. It has kept my home smelling perfectly pumpkin. I may have to go pick up a second one, just because.

Rare find on Facebook!

Rare find on Facebook!

Speaking of Home Goods I’d like to give a special shout out to them and Pier 1 Imports. I recently moved and both stores have been my go to for decorating my new space, without overdoing on decor and dollars. If there’s anything I’m raving about this month it’s minimalism. I’ve always been a minimalist, but moving gave me the best excuse to purge. I got rid of so much stuff that I didn’t use via Goodwill and Facebook sale groups. I’m totally raving about Facebook sale pages. Not only was I able to get money for and recycle things I no longer needed, but I also found some great furniture that I did need. I picked up a fabulous sleigh bed for my son and an amazing (possibly one of a kind) entry table with mirror set. Check out your local Facebook buy/sell/barter pages. You never know what you might earn…or find!

Eve's Tree hoodies clockwise from top: The Sophie in Evergreen, The Ashley in Sienna, The Lisa Golden

Evy’s Tree hoodies clockwise from top:
The Sophie in Evergreen, The Ashley in Sienna, The Lisa Golden

Finding things is awesome and my favorite recent find is a small company (that’s growing larger by the minute) called Evy’sTree (evystree.com)After I purged I made a vow to never again buy ANYTHING unless I absolutely NEEDED or LOVED it. I just can’t take having unnecessary stuff (or spending) in my life. Well, I may not need everything from Evy’s Tree (though I have convinced myself that I do), but I LOVE everything they make, and when I love something (as evidenced by the throw blanket on my couch that I bought in college) I’ll hold onto it forever, getting more than my money’s worth. I found Evy’s Tree on Instagram while I was doing work for a social media client. They make fashionably addictive and comfortable hoodies with feminine touches like ruffles and patterned lining. I purchased one and commented about it on Twitter. After that they asked me to test run two of their products. Brilliant of them, because I’ve bought two more since. They release new hoodies each month and offer them at pre-sale prices. I can’t wait for my next two to get here. I finally can feel like I’m wearing sweats all the time, but look polished and pulled together. Prices range from $79(intro) to $119 (full). Follow them on Instagram @evystreeofficialTwitter @EvysTree and find them on Facebook. Tell them I sent you, and then thank me when you are luxuriating in the highest quality, most comfortable hoodie you’ve ever owned.

Dare Maple Leaf Creme Cookies

Dare Maple Creme Cookies

Fall flavors are fantastic. Say that one ten times fast. Costco makes a pumpkin muffin to die for. It’s one of my weekend cheats, as you all know I eat clean Monday-Friday (I need to write about that again as it’s really working, people keep asking me how I’ve gotten so slim). Another fall treat in my home are Maple Creme Cookies by Dare cookie company. I dare you to try these and not get addicted. I first had these maple leaf shaped treats on a trip to Vermont many years ago. They are extremely popular there. They look beautiful in a glass cookie jar. Tasty, and fall functional.

The Skinnygirls await my housewarming party.

The Skinnygirls await my housewarming party.

For those of us that can’t let summer go, you can enjoy the perfectly peach taste of summer year round with White Peach Margarita from Skinnygirl Cocktails. My awesome friends over at SG sent me some samples of their line to taste test on a few friends (a Skinnygirl “sponsored” housewarming party is in the works). I held a small unpacking party and this flavor went very quickly. It’s got just the right amount of sweet, which I think compliments any dessert, no matter the season!

So those are my current obsessions. Let me know what you think of them and tell me, what are YOU obsessed with? If there’s something you think I need to try for my next Rave Page give it a shout out in the comments!

Regards and hugs,

TBB

Advertisements

Bethenny 2.0

Bethenny Frankel Photo credit: deadline.com

Bethenny Frankel
Photo credit: deadline.com

By Tara Cushing (TheBravoBlonde)

“Get the chopstick out of your ass!” “I’m eating my feelings right now.” Only one person can say these things and sound entertaining, intelligent, and authentic. Yes folks, the original Skinnygirl is baa-aack, and from the previews of Real Housewives of New York City Season 7, she’s as brash and sassy as ever.

It’s been a while since I can say I’ve been excited about a new season of Housewives. What used to be a strangely entertaining spy session into the lives of a clique of women, morphed into a long hour of petty overacted, and overreacted, drama. The last couple of seasons of The Real Housewives of wherever, had become background noise that I desperately tried to stay interested in. Each hour ended with me questioning if I had undiagnosed ADD. I just could not stay focused. However, if anybody can bring me back to Housewife fandom, it surely will be Bethenny Frankel.

After a stint on daytime TV with her talk show, Bethenny, a very public divorce, and a muted presence in the public eye,we now have Bethenny the RHONY version 2.0. Though she may feel that coming back to Bravo is in someway eating her own words, from the looks of it this is right where she belongs..and they need her. Bethenny is the perfect fit for Housewives.

How is she the perfect fit? She’s a single mother with a growing company, a far cry from some of the women on the neighboring New Jersey franchise who are more traditionally suited to have such a title, but it’s the absence of this traditional Housewife definition, combined with her unique personality that make her the quintessential Real Housewife. Her life is interesting which means she has enough going on that there’s no need for her to manufacture a story to be on the show. Add to that her witty sarcasm, unapologetic neuroticism, and nitty gritty take no prisoners approach to catfighting, and you’ve got a woman who knows how to be nothing but real. This is why fans love her, it never feels like she is faking it. This is why she excels at reality tv, and was the square peg as a talk show host.

With a major return to the show that made her a household name, a new dating advice book, and two new Skinnygirl Cocktails flavors, I think the world is certainly ready for Bethenny 2.0! PS: I recently received the new Skinnygirl Pinot Noir and Spicy Lime Margarita flavors. I haven’t even drank red wine in eons due to migraines, but I bit the bullet with the Pinot Noir. I have to say, it was delicious and I fought the urge to have a second glass. The next day I was fine, no headache. Perhaps it’s the reduced sugar, but whatever it is, I’ve finally been able to enjoy red wine for the first time in ages. Just like I’ll be able to enjoy Housewives when it premieres April 7th. I’m saving my Spicy Lime Margarita for that special occasion. Check out the trailer below and tell us, are you excited for the return of the glamorous girls of the Big Apple?

Reality Roundup

We love Joanna Krupa's transformation, even though it's not as drastic as Bruce (Jennerfer) Jenner's.

We love Joanna Krupa’s transformation, even though it’s not as drastic as Bruce (Jennerfer) Jenner’s.

By Tara Cushing and Jamie Bertolini

According to Andy Cohen via Twitter, the entire cast of Vanderpump Rulesall let Stassi [Shroeder] ‘have it’” during the reunion filming on Friday. At one point, Jax Taylor tweeted “I need a drink so bad this reunion could not be going any worse ….” The SUR staff posted photos after filming wrapped at PUMP and neither Stassi, nor Kristen Doute were present.

Our deepest condolences to Vicki Gunvalson. The Real Housewives of Orange County star lost her mother on Wednesday. The original OC Housewife posted the following tribute on her Instagram page:

“Tonight I received a phone call that is every person’s

worst nightmare. My amazing, beautiful and strong

mother passed on and is now with the love of her life

my father in heaven. I am who I am today because

of her. An amazing cook, organized, bold personality

and had a sense of style and fashion I adored. I miss you

so much mommy! My life will never be the same without

you to give me advice and your wisdom. You were so healthy

and so vibrant, and so beautiful. I still need you. I love you MOM.”

 

In other unfortunate RHOC news, Radar Online reports that one season wonder Peggy Tanous is not only divorced from husband Micah, but could also soon be homeless. According to Radar, Tanous has missed a whopping 75 mortgage payments on her $840K home, and that she filed for bankruptcy two years ago. Court documents show that Tanous is only bringing in an estimated $30K a year. Her only current income is $2500 per month in checks from her ex, although she has never publicly acknowledged their split. We have interviewed Peggy and she has always remained a friend of TBB ‘s Twitter. If the reports are true, we wish her the best during this trying time.

Caroline Manzo’s son, Christopher Manzo of the Real Housewives of New Jersey had a second chance on Millionaire Matchmaker this week. According to his interview on Bravotv.com, he is still single but has dated since appearing on the show.

Real Housewives of Miami gone Beverly Hills Joanna Krupa took to Instagram to show off a new bob this week. The model had her hair cut by dry cut specialist and stylist to the stars, Mika Fowler. The new do is a sophisticated look for Krupa. We love the upgrade! To see more of Mika’s work you can follow her @mikafowler on twitter and @mikafowlerxx on Instagram.

In Million Dollar Listing New York news, Fredrik Eklund and his husband Derek Kaplan have once again listed their Manhattan apartment for sale. The recently renovated, West 27th Street home is on the market for $2,995,000. Fredrik and Luis D. Ortiz also announced that they’ve co-listed a Chelsea Penthouse to the tune of $6 million. We are wondering if this will be seen on the net season of MDLNY.

Good news for GG2D fans: Girlfriend’s Guide to Divorce has been renewed for a second season and production is set to begin filming this summer. Bravo‘s first big foray into scripted television has been a big hit.

It appears that Kristen Taekman and Bethenny Frankel are not hitting it off as filming continues for The Real Housewives of New York City. According to Kristen’s interview on Bravotv.com. Kristen states, “I feel like I was really looking forward to getting to know her,” she tells the New York Daily News, “and at this point I feel like that hasn’t really happened yet in a way that I wanted to.” Will Kristen have a glass of Skinnygirl tossed at her next season? We will have to wait and see.

Southern Charm fans, T. Rav returns to our TVs on March 16. Being a South Carolina resident (Jamie) and quite a fan of Charleston, I love this show and the drama that it brings! Also, I can’t wait to see the rise and fall of Ravenel’s campaign if we’re being totally honest here.

Outside of Bravo TV, network news heavyweight Brian Williams is involved in a scandal that’s becoming sleazier than one of his daughter’s scenes on Girls. The Nightly News anchor and managing editor is stepping away from the news desk at NBC for an undisclosed period of time, following allegations that he lied about his personal experiences and eyewitness accounts. NBC is investigating while Lester Holt will be filling in for Williams.

Last we bring you more news about Bruce Jenner, here on in referred to as Jennerfer. Jennerfer has been a huge topic of conversation over the last few weeks with the reveal that he/she is indeed undergoing a gender metamorphosis. After months of speculation following surgery to remove his Adam’s Apple, the former Olympic athlete and Keeping Up With the Kardashians star has finally come out, or his family pushed him out, of  the gender reassignment closet. Rumored to be filming a docu-series for E!, and revealing his/her process in an exclusive Diane Sawyer interview, Jennerfer already had enough emotional stress. Sadly Jennerfer was involved in a fatal car accident in Malibu, along the Pacific Coast Highway Saturday morning. While he/she walked away without a scratch, the Lexus Jennerfer rear-ended was struck by a Hummer when it was pushed into oncoming traffic, killing the driver. According to TMZ police are obtaining a search warrant for Jennerfer’s cellphone to determine if the accident is a result of texting while driving, which is illegal in the state of California. If it is determined that Jennerfer was texting at the time of the accident, he/she could be charged with vehicular manslaughter.