Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Warner Bros. TV Holiday Media Mixer

Warner Bros. TV Holiday Media Mixer
Beauty & Essex Hollywood

Last night I attended the Warner Bros. TV Holiday Media Mixer, and as always it was a great time! The event was held at a swanky Hollywood bar, Beauty & Essex, that I highly recommend. Think beautiful chandeliers, upscale dining, pretty twinkle lights and a secret entrance via a faux pawn shop. Once inside, the party featured delicious food and drinks, a psychic and tarot card reader, candy maker, lip artist (check out my red glitter lipstick below!), and mingling with others involved in the entertainment industry.

Warner Bros. TV Holiday Media Mixer
Warner Bros. TV Holiday Media Mixer
Beauty & Essex Hollywood
Red Glitter Lips
Warner Bros. TV Holiday Media Mixer



Friday, December 1, 2017

Aquarium of the Pacific Holiday Celebration

Holiday Season at Aquarium of the Pacific

This December, visit Aquarium of the Pacific to experience a seasonal celebration, complete with Santa Diver, Penguin Walk, "fish"mas treats, holiday-themed characters, and more! The fun takes place December 2 through 24.

The Aquarium, although located in sunny Southern California, transforms into a winter wonderland fun for kids and adults alike. There's something magical about a big, bright Christmas tree surrounded by falling snow with a tank full of colorful sea life in the background! And in true marine fashion, see Santa swim with the fishes in between posing for pictures in his traditional attire.

Aquarium of the Pacific Santa Diver

On weekends, crafts, Hanukkah storytelling, and real snow are highlights not to be missed. And every day at 10 a.m., see penguins up close as they waddle their way to their habitat, marching in front of the otters in the Northern Gallery.

During a preview of the holiday experience, we got to interact with one of those penguins who hammed it up for the audience!

Aquarium of the Pacific penguin
Aquarium of the Pacific penguins
Aquarium of the Pacific penguins

Admission to the Aquarium of the Pacific in Long Beach is $29.95 for adults, $26.95 for seniors (62+), and $17.95 for children ages 3-11. For additional information on all of the holiday activities taking place, visit the Aquarium Holidays page.

Spark of Love Toy Drive 
A toy drive runs daily December 2 through 24 and supports the Long Beach Fire Department Spark of Love Toy Drive. Aquarium guests who donate a new, unwrapped toy – at a $15 value or more – will receive a coupon valid for $10 off adult/$3 off child, up to 4 total admissions. Aquarium members will receive a complimentary Aquarium admission ticket for each toy donated (max of 6).



Thursday, November 16, 2017

Broken Memories Movie, a Touching Look at Alzheimer’s

Broken Memories movie

I had the privilege of attending a screening of Broken Memories, an indie film centered around a family dealing with Alzheimer's, and in the process gained a little perspective.

The screening was held at Writer's Guild Theater in Beverly Hills and was combined with a benefit for Alzheimer's Greater Los Angeles. In attendance were Ron and Bryce Dallas Howard, son and granddaughter of Rance Howard, who starred in the film, there to show support. This topic is especially dear to the Howards, as Rance's wife passed away from Alzheimer's earlier this year. The audience got to hear just how proud the father-daughter pair are of their grand/father, as well as speak about how Alzheimer's has played a role in their family.

Ron and Bryce Dallas Howard at Broken Memories movie screening

Going into the movie I was nervous about the subject matter. I immediately thought of The Notebook and how sad the film was. As the movie progressed, I learned that this story, while painful, was also a celebration of life. A reminder to cherish time with our loved ones. And it didn't hurt that Rance Howard played the role perfectly. He was charming and hilarious. Throughout the screening I wanted to give his character a big hug.

Being indie, the movie wasn't a big production. I felt the characters could have been developed more and the supporting cast, Ivan Sergei and Kelly Greyson, while they did just fine, weren't on the same level as Howard who was phenomenally relatable. In fact, Ron Howard said this is his father's best work. Despite it not being a big blockbuster, the feelings that the film evokes of the audience is undeniable.

Broken Memories movie screening

Many of us have been affected in some measure by Alzheimer's. According to alz.org, more than five million Americans are living with Alzheimer's. It's a savage disease that wipes away memories, is frustrating for those affected, and possibly ever harder for those left to care for loved ones who lose their memories.

A few days before the screening I spent time with my grandpa who is starting to forget things. Right now he'll call us by another name and ask us the same questions repeatedly, but overall he still remembers. Sometimes when he repeats himself, I catch myself thinking, "Grandpa, I just told you" and then feel guilty. This movie was a great reminder that he has no control of what he forgets and I am truly lucky that he still has his memories.

You can watch Broken Memories now on Apple's VOD. The film is shining light on this heart-wrenching topic and is definitely worth seeing, regardless if you have an experience with Alzheimer's.




Sunday, November 12, 2017

Bacari P.D.R. Boasts a Phenomenal Brunch

Bacari P.D.R.

Bacari P.D.R. has me wishing I lived in the South Bay! Hands down, it is the best brunch I've ever experienced. The food is phenomenal. Every single thing I tried was delicious. And it doesn't hurt that the perfectly-decorated, hip restaurant is located in the small seaside town of Playa del Rey, CA

Upon entering Bacari P.D.R., you are greeted with vintage light bulbs, a ceiling covered in wine bottles, and an intimate atmosphere. The restaurant is small, but in good way that allows you to enjoy conversations with your table mates. The size didn't hinder our experience, but I hear it can get crowded. We visited for Sunday brunch and were seated right away thanks to reservations. Call ahead to be safe.

Bacari P.D.R. in Playa del Rey
Bacari P.D.R. Playa del Rey

We started off with bottomless mimosas for $20 a person and were provided with jars of champagne and orange juice. No wait at all! We later switched to sangria, also part of the $20 deal. It was nice to have variety and drinks that were promptly replenished our entire meal. Bravo to the staff!

Bacari P.D.R. brunch menu

And then there was the food. The amazing food! Portions are on the smaller side, allowing guests to try a plethora of dishes. Two to three plates per person are recommended. With our group of four, we ordered about two items each and were able to try at least half of the menu. Check out the amazing dishes below.

Crab Cake Benedict
grapefruit hollandaise, sous-vide egg
Crab Cake Benedict - Bacari P.D.R.

Poached Shrimp
citrus chili, shaved radish, parsley, micro basil
Poached Shrimp - Bacari P.D.R.

Gravlax Pizza
cured salmon, avocado, pickled red onion, creme fraiche, crispy dough
Gravlax Pizza - Bacari P.D.R.

Shakshouka
rustic tomato sauce, bell pepper, garlic, sous-vide egg, parsley, baguette
Shakshouka - Bacari P.D.R.

Bacari Fries
chef's sunflower, roasted garlic, lemon and smoked pepper sauce, fried egg
Bacari Fries - Bacari P.D.R.

Incredible flavors! I'd say my food adventure level is a medium so some of the combos sounded a little weird and I was hesitant to try, but I'm glad I did because the ingredients work so well together.  Not pictured were a few more items that I didn't try because I'm pescatarian, but my friends said it was all delicious. I also forgot to snap photos of the veggie hash and chef's french toast. Even though I don't eat meat, I am not a big fan of fake meat. That being said, WOW was the veggie hash good! Didn't taste vegetarian at all. And I also don't care for french toast, I know, so weird!, but I was pleasantly surprised that I loved Baracri's. 

In all, I tried seven dishes and enjoyed each. Not just, eh that's OK, but really, really enjoyed each dish. You can't go wrong with anything on the menu. I look forward to my next visit and trying the remaining items!

If you are on the west side go to Bacari P.D.R. stat. If Playa del Rey is too far of a trek, check out their Glendale location, Bacari G.D.L. or Bacaro L.A. in Los Angeles. You can thank me later.