August 1, 2012 at 9:30 am , by Ladies' Lounge
Operatic. That’s the word that will (not so coincidentally) spring to mind as you get caught up in this sweeping epic, The Shoemaker’s Wife, by Adriana Trigiani. Ciro Lazzari and Enza Ravenelli meet as teenagers in their native Italy, kiss, then part. They meet again in New York City, where each has been forced to start over—Ciro as a shoemaker and Enza as a seamstress who ends up at the Metropolitan Opera designing costumes for the legendary tenor Enrico Caruso. Theirs is a story of missed connections until one of them stages a dramatic intervention that changes their fate. Written with a sharp eye for period details, this novel (inspired by Trigiani’s grandparents) pays tribute to generations of Italian immigrants who made their way in the New World with optimism, grit and a passion for work, family, good food and wine—and enduring love.
We’re giving away 20 copies of The Shoemaker’s Wife, now in paperback (and perfect for your book club)! Want the chance to win one? Leave a comment below!
Plus, check out extra goodies, like discussion questions and a letter from the author, here.
July 24, 2012 at 2:46 pm , by Ladies' Lounge
The finale has finally arrived! You guys know that I have been team Jef all the way, so I had my fingers crossed for them. I remember when I was down to the last two on my finale; I had truly fallen for all three final guys. It’s so hard when you realize time how quickly time has flown by and you have to make a decision for the final rose.
Meeting the parents is obviously a huge decision and of course, Emily had little Ricki to think of as well. It’s all about making sure that whatever guy she chooses was the perfect compliment to not only her life, but Ricki’s life too. I’m a new aunt, and I can only imagine how much stress Emily was under to make sure that she was picking the right guy and not just following along with what her parents think. I’m so fortunate to have a very open family that trusts my judgment and they always supported me through the process. At this point I just wanted them to essentially tell me what to do, but I knew they couldn’t.
Jef is such an amazing, genuine and kind guy. You could just see in his eyes how nervous he was talking to Emily’s mom and to me, that shows how much he loves Emily. I also thought it was great that he asked the family what they thought about Emily doing the show. He really opened himself up and I think Emily’s parents saw honesty in him. Do you guys think that Emily should have introduced Ricki to the guys before she made her decision in order to judge how good they would be with her? It’s such a big step and hard to predict, but I can also understand why she wouldn’t want to confuse Ricki.
I couldn’t believe that Arie would be going up against such tough competition after Jef met the family! It seemed like her family definitely had their mind made up about Jef. Is it just me or did it seem like Arie was talking more about himself than asking questions? Maybe it was just edited that way. And who knew that Arie dated a single mother? I think that gave him a little advantage, but I agree with what Emily’s brother said—his answers felt forced and unnatural. Arie and Emily didn’t have that look in their eyes where you can tell that they’re in love. To be honest, I thought their kiss was a little awkward. It seemed like she was pulling back a little bit, no? Read more
July 18, 2012 at 12:57 pm , by Ladies' Lounge
I struggled through the beginning of this episode but that came to a screeching halt when I saw the Bachelor Pad previews. I know this is supposed to be all about Emily but I’ve been getting a lot of tweets about Bachelor Pad 3 and I’d like to clarify a few things. I have no qualms about Ed or Reid being on the show, and I’ll probably tune in if I’m at home on a Monday night. I have no opinion on whether I’m on “team Ed” or “team Reid” because I have yet to see what all of the commotion is about. No offense to either guy, but based on my time with a certain one of them I highly doubt it’s actually about me. That ship sailed a long time ago and I’m just happy to see the guys doing something fun and exciting. To be frank, I hope Ed wins, but it might be a surprise to most of you to learn that being the “winner” of The Bachelorette is not financially rewarding. After everything is said and done, he might was well make some benefit from it all. I am in an amazing place in my life right now; I’ve never been happier. So it’s not awkward, weird or sad to see one of ex-boyfriends on the show! You can read more of my thoughts about this on my blog.
A few quick notes about Men Tell All…I was disappointed in Kalon. But I guess it is what it is and I’ll give him one thing—at least he knows who he is and isn’t wishy-washy about it. He stood his ground and didn’t waver. I know his attitude and personality leave something to be desired, but I’ve always said I’d rather be friends with an a**hole who owns it than one who fakes it. Just know who you are and own it! Read more
July 10, 2012 at 3:19 pm , by Ladies' Lounge
On last night’s episode, Emily was down to the final three bachelors. I remember this part of the process being so magical. We were in Maui, a place that most of you know I visit often, so it was a special place to me for many reasons. I actually have a very vivid memory—right before my date with Reid I had the morning to myself. I opened up the windows to my big, beautiful room, turned up the music, sipped my coffee and thought about how lucky I was. But it hadn’t hit me yet that I was about to let go of someone who had become really special to me, so I don’t envy Emily at this stage. You truly do have severe feelings for the final three guys. I can’t speak for all of the bachelorettes, but I’m pretty sure that by the final two you know where your heart is headed, but at three there are still a lot of unanswered questions.
Let’s talk about something that might be a bit controversial: Turning down the fantasy dates. I saw quite a few tweets last night from people saying “Good for Emily!” but to be honest I was really confused. If this were “real” life and we were at the point of saying I love you to someone, sleepovers would be happening. This doesn’t mean I think you need to be doing the horizontal polka ladies; I just mean you have a very limited amount of time with this person. And further more, you have to remember there is no off camera or alone time together at this stage.
So think about it: Emily is trying to figure out who she is going to spend the rest of her life with outside of the TV show, but she’s making a decision based on what all of us viewers will think. Do you know how many people have boldly asked me “How many guys did you sleep with while on the show?” Yes, I went on national television and made certain choices but that information is personal no one else’s business. However, I do think that sexual chemistry is important when trying to decide who you’re going to marry. Let’s face it—it’s human nature, and ignoring it because she’s worried about what the rest of the world will think could very well be the same reason why engagement number two didn’t work out. Maybe she’ll decide to have overnight dates when she’s down to the final two, but let’s forget about the sexual chemistry for now. I think she should have accepted those overnight dates simply to get to know the guys more, but to heck with what we all think! Read more
July 3, 2012 at 1:55 pm , by Ladies' Lounge
This episode was the one that pulled at my heartstrings the most. My hometown dates on The Bachelor and The Bachelorette are some of my favorite memories of all time. I felt the most comfortable with the guys at that point and like I could just be myself. Plus, the whole process of going those dates made me feel like finding that special someone was truly possible. Meeting the family adds a healthy sense of reality to this whole process, and I’ve always loved all of my ex-boyfriend’s families. To me, this is one of the most important parts of this crazy journey.
The first hometown date just happens to be in Chicago with Chris! My heart will always have a place in Chicago. Oddly enough, even though I chose Ed on The Bachelorette, I never did get that hometown date. Hmm… Anyway, I loved seeing all of the familiar places and corners and things that I loved about Chicago. It made my heart go pitter-patter! I wasn’t really a fan of Chris at the beginning, and I don’t know if it’s because of this Chi-town visit or what, but he’s definitely growing on me! He seems very genuine, but sometimes I feel like he needs to just loosen up a bit. His family also seemed very warm and sweet, however, I have to say I never saw the sparks. It was actually a little boring.
Now on to Jef! First off, I loved Emily’s outfit—so cute. And I love that they went on a western-style date. Jef shooting guns was amazing! Just three minutes into their date I was sold! But how heartbreaking was it that his parents weren’t there? I did kind of like the big family meeting, and I know Emily was intimated, but in the long run I think that approach is worthwhile. I have to admit, I loved Jef’s hipster vibe in the beginning but I didn’t feel that hunky vibe from him until this episode. Maybe it was the farm, the guns or the big family, but now I think this dude is a serious catch. It was also nice to see how playful and cute Emily is with him. She seems like she can totally be herself when they’re together. Read more
June 28, 2012 at 8:30 am , by Ladies' Lounge
Every month an LHJ reader will get the chance to interview one of their favorite celebrities. This month, Deborah Chamberlain of Wisconsin quizzes the Late Night host Jimmy Fallon about his new comedy CD (Blow Your Pants Off), bucket list, and more.
It’s been ten years since your last comedy album—what made you decide to do another?
It’s been ten years since my last comedy album. MP3′s didn’t even exist. I really wanted to have an album out in this decade.
What’s your favorite track on Blow Your Pants Off and why?
My favorite track on the album is probably “Scrambled Eggs” with Paul McCartney. It wasn’t even supposed to happen really. I was doing the pre-interview with Paul up in his dressing room at Saturday Night Live, you know, just going over what we were going to talk about on our show, stuff like that. So I told him I had a bit if he’d like to do it. He politely declined. So I tell him that it’s based on “Yesterday” and how when he first wrote that song it was titled “Scrambled Eggs” and he told me that he knew that story because HE did it. I felt like Chris Farley. So he politely declines again. So I tried one more time. I started to sing our version of “Yesterday” called “Scrambled Eggs.” “Scrambled eggs, oh my baby how I love your legs, but not as much as I love scrambled eggs. Oh, have you tried scrambled eggs?” Cut to Paul’s head over my shoulder and he’s singing “… waffle fries.” He was in! I said, “You’ll do it?” and he said, “As long as you do it with me!” That’s when I fainted. Read more
June 28, 2012 at 8:00 am , by Ladies' Lounge
This August Rashida Jones stars in the comedy Celeste and Jesse Forever as a woman who’s getting a divorce but wants to remain best friends with her ex-husband, who’s played by Saturday Night Live‘s Andy Samberg. (Sounds tricky, right?) If she sounds familiar, that’s probably because you’ve seen her playing Ann on the NBC comedy Parks and Recreation. We got the chance to interview Jones for the In My Words interview in our August issue, and here’s little a sampling of the cool things we learned about her: She co-wrote Celeste and Jesse Forever with her ex-boyfriend, she grew up with famous parents Quincy Jones and Peggy Lipton, and she gets starstruck by Justin Bieber and One Direction.
Since we love Jones and Parks and Recreation so much, we’re giving you the chance to win seasons one, two and three of the show on DVD! There will be five lucky winners—all you have to do is comment on this blog post and you’re entered to win. Only one entry per person, per email address. Good luck!