OUR BLOGGERS!

May 25, 2017

The Importance of Hydration

by Connor Coman
May 22, 2017

Finding Your Acting Class - An Actor's Guide

by Fran Montano
May 18, 2017

Money and Fame and Very, Very Independent Film

by Samantha Simmonds-Ronceros
May 16, 2017

Build Your Credit Score!

by Lillian Appleby
May 12, 2017

Things to Refresh Your Space

by Christopher Porikos
May 11, 2017

14th Factory

by Raleigh Barrett
May 04, 2017

People Do Go to Jail for Animal Cruelty…YAY!

by Nancy Bianconi
pinky
May 02, 2017

I Dream of Pinky

by Luckie
May 01, 2017

Horoscopes - May 2017

by Maya White
April 27, 2017

Don’t Forget to Love Your Body: Now

by Connor Coman
April 26, 2017

The Best Indie Films

by Samantha Simmonds-Ronceros
April 24, 2017

LAPD North Hollywood - Our Police Captain is a 'Trekkie!'

by Waide Aaron Riddle
April 21, 2017

24 Hours In NoHo

by Jack Witt
April 19, 2017

How is your Mental Equivalent?

by Fran Montano
Tuesday, 11 February 2014 08:25

Interior Design - Hamptons Design

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hamptons lr

One of my favorite design styles is that of The Hamptons in New York. The fresh, clean look is inspirational. The crisp feel of the light or natural colored linen slip covered over a soft cushy sofa or overstuffed chair really sets the tone. Paired with a beautifully dark stained plank floor or a whitewashed floor, lightweight linen or cotton drapery panels adds to the feel and atmosphere needed to achieve this look.

hamptons bedroom

Not to be mistaken with Shabby Chic, the style is slightly more void of the floral, plaids and weathered looking furniture. You’re more likely to see traditional case good pieces in fused with lightly colored fabrics, some reclaimed pieces along with shutters or even wooden blinds on the windows. Here are a few tips to help you achieve The Hamptons look without breaking the bank.

hampton lr 2

1. Start with light colors. Use beige, sage green, pale green/blue on the walls.
2. Try adding wainscoting painted white for architectural interest.
3. Earth toned or light colors works well for window treatments in cotton or linen.
4. Pair linen upholstered chairs with a rustic or reclaimed wooden table in the dining room. Accent the table with glass hurricanes and candles for the centerpiece.
5. Wicker framed chairs with a great light upholstered sofa and a glass coffee table can work well for a living room. Add nautical styled pillows for accents.
6. Keep accents simple. Wicker baskets, plants, sea grass or jute rugs can finish off a space.

hamptons lr 3

Just remember to be careful when designing your space. Never over do your style. You won’t achieve your desired look and will appear too trendy. Less is more in some cases.

meyou

Cultivate the art of romance and celebrate this Valentine’s Day - La dolce vita style

The key to romance and seduction is to create extraordinary moments out of ordinary things. Some of the most meaningful ideas come from simplicity and the heart. Here are a few:

Thursday, 06 February 2014 11:11

Health - Top 4 Ways to Stay Happy

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waikiki rainbow

I recently went on a trip to Honolulu, Hawaii and happen to read about it being the #1 happiest city in America. Granted, it's on a pacific island that offers beautiful scenery and mostly sunny and warm weather. But, I started thinking about what creates the "aloha spirit" of Hawaii, which seems to exude happiness from all the locals there. Here are 4 essential ways I believe people in the top happy areas of the United States, and the world for that matter, achieve their happiness.

We are all very familiar with the harnesses, pet sweaters, bells, whistles and toys that our pets know and love. These creations have come to the rescue to protect our pets and add quality to all of our lives. Have you ever wondered how pets managed to stand cold weather before the invention of those adorable little sweaters to keep them warm? Below is a list of genius creations that will have you wondering how we’ve managed until now – everything from year-round allergy protection for your pet to anti-boredom and loneliness ideas for the pets whose owners can’t be home most of the day. Embrace one, or all, your pet(s) will love you more for it!

Thursday, 30 January 2014 08:33

Getting Dumped or Going Deeper?

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love you


Dear Maddisen,
I have a feeling my boyfriend is going to dump me. We’ve been together for about 8 months, and I thought we were getting closer, but he’s suddenly pulling away and getting really distant. I have that sinking feeling. How do I deal with this? Break up with him before he pulls the plug? But I like him so much. Feeling screwed up. Help! Thanks, BI

Tuesday, 28 January 2014 07:56

The Duo Dishes - To Make or To Buy

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Almond Pulp - The Duo Dishes

We like to do a lot of things from scratch. That’s why kneading bread, rolling out pie dough, and beating cream into fluffy soft peaks is fun for us. We like to be hands on with foods and figure out how they work. And how they work best. That’s why you see a bowl of ground, watery nuts above. That, friends, is almond pulp. It is what you’ll find left behind if you make your own almond milk. Maybe you’re wondering to yourself, ‘Self, why are these guys making almond milk when it’s at the store?’ Well, there are lots of things that just seem easy to do by hand, so why not do them. At least once. If it’s not worth the time, effort or cost, then feel free to buy it. But at least you can say you’ve tried to do it. And that, friends, is the only answer we can give.

About Diane: One of the most respected fashion designers during the 1970s until now. Famous for creating the wrapped dress during the 70s which came to symbolize a sort of empowerment and independence for women that were starting to enter to work field during this era. DVF brand has expanded to a full women’s ready to wear collection including, handbags, shoes, accessories, and home goods. DVF is sold around the world, including 85 DVF stores.

Wednesday, 22 January 2014 09:08

Dating - Be Seen in ‘14!

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Eight Things You Can Do to Improve Your Dating Life Now

hope

Monday, 20 January 2014 13:21

Health Matters in 2014

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wellness

I recently got a chance to live stream into the Clinton Foundation's annual "Health Matters" conference in La Quinta, CA and it was very informative and thought provoking. The conference focuses on healthcare and wellness in the USA. I've put together a brief overview of the day's panel discussions to share with you so that you may see where we are at with wellness in America and what direction things are going in.

orchard living room

This shade of purple is full of passion, pop and pizzazz! Orchid is a color rich and bright; it evokes radiance, health and happiness and even adds energy. Its various tones can range from a grayish purple to a purplish-pink to a reddish purple. It works well with the many shades of gray, black, white and ivory. It adds softness to room’s full glass and mirrored pieces. You can add this color to any room. A splash of color with pillows, rugs, throws will let you infuse this tone with out over powering or feeling too heavy. But if you’re feeling a little brave, why not add this color to a feature wall, rugs, bedding or even a chair. Any way you choose to add this color, rest assured you won’t be sorry.

Thursday, 09 January 2014 09:47

New!! The Pets District

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Everything You Need To Know For Your Pet in the NoHo Arts District

pet3

As many of us know, NoHo is one of Los Angeles’ most pet-friendly areas. The Arts District specifically caters to our furry friends, as the majority of businesses have outdoor sections to accommodate them. On any given day, you can be guaranteed to see people carrying out their regular business with their dogs on leashes, (or you might even see Beatrice, who walks her cat).

Happy New Years!! I hope everyone enjoyed the holiday season as much as I did with your loved ones. A few things about the year 2014, according to the Chinese calendar it is the year of the horse which means that (for people like me with birthdays that fall into the year of the Horse) it is a great year filled with opportunities, unexpected adventures, surprising romances, so yes I am beyond excited to find out what 2014 has in store for me and as well as the fashion industry. With that said I have come up with a short list of fashion trends that we should all be thrown to the curb and waved goodbye as of right now! Love it or leave it you decide but the following are some of the best and worst fashion trends of 2013…unfortunately we have all been victims so do not feel bad.

Monday, 06 January 2014 09:03

The Duo Dishes - New Year, New Joys

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Editor's Note: Amir wrote this post for our blog a couple of years ago, and no doubt, there have been new and memorable occasions since then. We're each spending New Years Eve in different ways. He'll be with his husband and friends in Los Angeles, while I give a toast to 2014 in London. No matter what you do to celebrate, we hope you have a most fantastic New Year!

lose-belly-fat


There’s no better time than now to focus on your health and fitness goals. Follow these 5 steps and you are on your way to the 3 T’s: Tighten, Tone, and Trim. 

french kitchen 3

French design can encompass a number of things. It has toile fabrics in many colors and designs, the iconic fleur de lis pattern, matelasse and chinoiserie. It also has roosters in the kitchen paired with beautiful checked and floral fabrics along side heavy weathered tables anchored with rush-seated chairs. It can mix something very sophisticated in a room full of rustic antiques creating a space that is elegant, charming and relaxed.

Tuesday, 31 December 2013 09:47

Consciously Create Your Goals in 2014!

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Einstein goals

Dear Maddisen:

I’m curious to know your approach to new year’s resolutions, and how good you are at following through and achieving them. Any tips for us readers? Happy New Year, WG

holidaycup

There’s a reason why high season in matchmaking starts in September. People anticipate the pending holidays and nobody wants to go through it alone. The stress, expectations, frenetic pace, obligations, retail ruckus…OY! Of course spending the holidays with the one we love is simply delicious but I often wonder if people try too hard to create magic with the wrong person or Mr./ Ms. Right Now. It is a very vulnerable time of year for a lot of people that can foster social anxiety, family dysfunction, excessiveness and bad behavior. It’s also a very beautiful time when traditions and loved ones gather ‘round to make more sweet memories.

HolidayPounds

The average American gains 7 pounds over the Holiday Season. Don't be a statistic! Here a 7 things you can do starting today to ensure that your waistline doesn't expand into another zip code.

Thursday, 12 December 2013 07:57

The Duo Dishes - Getting Into the Spirit

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Glog Mulled Wine - The Duo Dishes

We’re getting into the spirit of the season just like everyone else. In addition to the gingerbread men, peppermint delights, and traditional Christmas cookies, we love to include an adult treat in our Holiday repertoire of goodies. I enjoy eggnog as part of my winter routine. Chrystal, on the other hand, is not the biggest fan of dairy, boozy drinks. Being that many of my in-laws have a Swedish heritage, I thought a glogg recipe would be the perfect alcoholic seasonal beverage to share.

Wednesday, 11 December 2013 11:58

Fashion - Holiday 2013 Best Dressed

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As the holidays approach you could very well wear the same little black dress to every party this season, but what’s the fun in that? Not saying I won’t share a couple of jaw dropping LBD’s but with a calendar full of fetes is the perfect excuse to splurge on some of the best this season has to offer. And with Nordstrom, Macy’s and Bloomy’s as your number one shopping destination, you can rest assured you’ll dress to impress at every occasion this season. Not to mention I didn’t forget to include budget friendly but great pieces.

Wednesday, 04 December 2013 13:33

Interior Design - Upholstered Walls Pt 2

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upholstered-wall red

Continued from the last article, here is another way to upholster your wall. This a bit more permanent where you’ll attach or adhere batting right on the wall before installing your chosen fabric. This is really not a new idea. Does anyone remember the velvet-flocked wallpaper from the early 70’s? Well, this is an updated version.

Tuesday, 03 December 2013 11:10

Improve Your Health – Practice Gratitude

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thank you

Dear Readers:

Welcome to the holiday season! Thanksgiving is the perfect time to celebrate the harvest of living and give thanks for all blessings big and small.

happythanksgiving

It's just around the corner, the day we give thanks by stuffing our faces with turkey, stuffing, cranberry sauce and pumpkin pie. I can almost feel my pant button popping as I write this.

Thursday, 21 November 2013 09:18

Dating - Never Judge a Book by its Cover Alone

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romanticbookmarks

Being a matchmaker has tremendous rewards…and challenges. Everybody has a story and I always feel honored when people share their intimate details and difficulties with me. All I want to do is help and inspire them. Then there are those who seem to have it all figured out. They’re the “I’ve got it covered” clientele. They seem to know a lot about their strengths and very little about their challenges or blind spots. They “don’t need any advice and know how to date”; they just need a little more “access” to the right people according to them. Which is partly true, I’m sure. However the part that amazes me the most is that they’re not interested in modifying anything about themselves or their approach to dating even though they’re striking out left and right. “I’m just fine the way I am – it’s them” essentially is what they’re expressing. This is when I quote Einstein’s definition of insanity: doing the same thing over and over (and over!) again and expecting a different result.

Thursday, 21 November 2013 09:03

Fashion - Victoria Secret Fashion Show 2013

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Most of us are getting ready for the Holidays, shopping for Thanksgiving dinner, contemplating whether or not to meet the parents, in my case and I speak for all fashionistas out there we cannot wait for probably one of the most anticipated fashion events during this time of the year; Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show 2013.

upholster

Many times over the years, clients wanted to use something other than paint to jazz up a space. Most of the options or alternatives seem a little too permanent for some. But have you ever thought of upholstered walls? I bet not. So lets investigate this viable option.

Monday, 11 November 2013 09:05

The Duo Dishes - Baba Ghanoush

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Keep It Simple Stupid

Babaghanoush-The-Duo-Dishes

There were four eggplant just sitting, waiting, to be used. But how? At least three hours of research and thought went into the process of figuring out something fun to do with them. Eggplant parmigiana would’ve been great, but the idea of fried, cheesey eggplant felt too heavy for the occasion. A salad would’ve been nice, but a few ingredients were missing. Eggplant is great as the main star of a stir fry, but for some reason, that didn’t quite measure up either. Sometimes you spend so much time trying to go overboard when simple is all you really need. We’ve found that happen to us many times, and it’s nice to pull back and just let the natural flavors of the star player do their thing. That’s how those four eggplants ended up taking a ride in a food processor for one of the easiest dips you’ll ever make.

Baba Ghanoush may have several spellings, but it’s preparation is pretty much always the same. It’s a blend of softened eggplant, tahini, olive oil, lemon juice and salt. Anything else you add is your special touch. There are usually two points of contention with baba ghanoush. The first revolves around the eggplant. Many people will tell you, even the nice folks at a local Middle Eastern restaurant, will probably tell you that the roasty toasty flavor of the dip comes from the eggplants. You can cook them over a grill for the best flavor, or you can try this broil then bake method. Second, there’s the tahini. Tahini–roasted sesame seed paste–is surely optional, but it does add that seedy, rich umami note that really sings in this dip. Instead of using tahini though, this recipe utilizes sesame oil, in conjunction with olive oil, to bring out those flavors.

You can dress it up as you like, and for this version, smoked paprika adds an aromatic, oakey earthiness to each scoop. Cayenne would be nice too. Baba Ghanoush is great with crackers, bread or vegetables. It also can serve as a perfect spread for sandwiches. The key is to keep it simple. You can’t go wrong.

Baba Ghanoush (Middle Eastern Eggplant Dip) – Serves 4
4 medium Italian eggplants
3 cloves garlic, unpeeled
Zest of 1 lemon
1 teaspoon lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon sesame oil
1/8 – 1/4 cup olive oil
1 tablespoon fresh chopped parsley
Smoked paprika

1. Place the eggplants on a baking sheet and slide under a preheated oven broiler set to high for 5-7 minutes, turning the eggplants over every minute or so to ensure all four sides are blackened. Remove from the oven and turn off the boiler. Set the oven to 400 degrees.

2. Wrap the garlic cloves in a small piece of aluminum foil and place them on the baking sheet with the eggplants. Put the baking sheet back into the oven and roast the eggplant and garlic for 30-35 minutes or until soft. Remove from the oven and allow to cool.

3. Once the eggplant and garlic are cool enough to touch, peel the skin off the eggplants and place the meat in the bowl of a food processor. Squeeze the roasted garlic cloves out of their skins and put them in the food processor as well. Add the lemon zest, lemon juice, salt and sesame oil. Secure the lid on the food processor, turn on the machine and drizzle in the first 1/8 cup of olive oil until just combined. Add up to another 1/4 cup of olive oil based on your preference.

4. Scrape the mixture into a serving bowl and top with the parsley and a sprinkling of smoked paprika. Pair the dip with your favorite crackers, bread or vegetables. If desired, cover and chill for a couple of hours to allow the flavors to build.

Wednesday, 06 November 2013 14:29

Health - Making yourself "Crazy" over Health and Fitness?

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crazy

If you just can't seem to get the momentum on your exercise program going, and find a million excuses to skip the gym and eat bad things, it may be time to make yourself a little crazy! Yeah, that’s right - wacky, insane, and wildly weird about exercise and eating well. As adults we may have a tendency to over think things, dwell on the past, beat ourselves up, or worry about the future. To an extent we must do those things to be realistic about where we’re going and what we’re doing in our lives.

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