Monthly Archives: January 2010

Shortcut to Fabulous Film: What a girl should see at the Movies

leap yearIf you are up for a chick flick this weekend, “Leap Year” is the movie for you. Starring Amy Adams and Matthew Goode, this film is the perfect feel-good romantic comedy with beautiful scenery, cute clothes and a happy ending with some laughs and twists and turns along the way. The movie starts in Boston where Amy Adam’s character, Anna, decides to surprise her doctor boyfriend who is attending a medical conference in Dublin after a disappointing proposal-free dinner before his departure. Anna plans to use the opportunity granted to her via an old Irish tradition that allows a woman to propose to a man on February 29th in a leap year. A series of unfortunate events threaten to interrupt Anna’s plan, but luckily for us, these events make the movie suspenseful in the completely girly sort of way we love. You will also get some girly giggles along the way and enjoy viewing all of the beautiful scenery of Ireland.

If you love movies like “You’ve Got Mail,” “Breakfast at Tiffany’s” or “Pretty Woman,”  you will love “Leap Year” too!

So grab your girlfriends, check movie times by clicking here and enjoy this shortcut to a fabulous film.

  • Share/Bookmark

10 Easy Ways To Be Green And Fabulous In 2010

imagesMost of us have a stereotypical image in our heads of the treehugging lifestyle – short showers, unflattering compact fluorescent lighting, rough recycled toilet paper – but in my world, going green has nothing to do with wearing Birkenstocks and eating Boca Chick’n Nuggets. I’m an environmentalist, yes, and admittedly, my bathroom is stocked with rolls of Marcal’s recycled finest; but I also eat incredibly delicious food, love shopping for vintage Hermès scarves, and go on amazing trips with my husband. Helping the planet doesn’t have to feel like a sacrifice — it can be fabulous and fun, too. Some ideas to get you started in 2010:

1. Eat real food. I’m sure you’ve heard a lot about organic food and how it’s better for the environment, but I say we all take a step back and focus first on eating and enjoying real food. You may laugh because it sounds so simple, but think about it: When’s the last time you went an entire day without eating something from a package? Aside from being bad for your health, processed foods take a ton of energy to produce, and most of that packaging ends up clogging our landfills. So take your cue from real food advocate Michael Pollan and stick to foods that your great grandmother would recognize (roasted chicken and veggies, yes; microwaved Lean Cuisine, not so much).

2. Go meatless on Mondays. You may not be able to afford a Prius, but if every American went meatless one day a week, it’d be the equivalent of all of us switching from regular cars to super fuel-efficient hybrids. You’ll be in fabulous company, too; the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health started the Meatless Monday movement in the US, and Sir Paul McCartney is spearheading it in the UK. And you don’t have to eat soy cheese and Tofurkey, either; stick to the “great grandmother” advice above and whip up some scrumptious favorites that are already meatless, like eggplant parmigiana, a savory frittata, or red beans and rice.

3. Try an organic food delivery service. Like any foodie, I really relish going to my local farmers market – that is, if I manage to wake up early enough on a Sunday morning to get there. Fruits and vegetables that were raised within an hour’s drive of my home just taste better, and eating food that doesn’t travel thousands of miles to reach your plate greatly reduces the environmental footprint of meals. But I realize that weekly farmers markets trips aren’t feasible for everyone; that’s why organic delivery services like Spud are a great solution. You fill out your order online and voilà! – farm fresh groceries delivered weekly to your door. Don’t live in a Spud delivery area? Do a quick Google search for “organic produce delivery” and you’ll find similar services in nearly every corner of the country.

4. Splurge on items that last. Times are tough; shouldn’t we be buying the cheapest stuff possible to scrape by? While you may congratulate yourself on finding a pair of pumps at Target for $20, when they fall apart four months from now, you’ll be out 20 bucks and those shoes (made from toxic PVC) will be chucked in the trash. Contrast that pair with the London Sole leather ballet flats I invested in five years ago; I take them to the shoemaker every time they start to look a little worn, and he fixes them up like new for mere peanuts.

5. Plan an incredible trip. Going green doesn’t mean giving up your wanderlust. But instead of setting your sights on Bali (7,175 lbs of CO2 for a round-trip flight from Los Angeles), why not first explore what’s closer to home? People visit the United States from all over the world because there’s so much natural beauty here (58 national parks!). I could spend a lifetime just exploring my state, California – Yosemite, Joshua Tree, Big Sur, the Monterey Peninsula… There are no doubt equally as amazing destinations within driving distance of your own home.

6. Choose experiences over “stuff.” What does it mean that Americans consume 25 percent of the world’s resources yet rank 16th when it comes to perceived happiness? (El Salvadorans, with a per capita income of $5,842, rank 11th.) To me, it means that once basic needs are met, additional “things” don’t make us happy. So choose experiences over stuff: Break bread or go for a hike with friends instead of shopping, give your sister a massage appointment for her birthday instead of another pair of earrings, or treat you and your loved one to a romantic anniversary dinner instead of buying each other yet another round of sentimental tchotchkes.

7. If you do have the urge to buy stuff: Why not hit up your local thrift store or flea market? It’s guilt-free shopping as far as I’m concerned, because you’re finding a second life for clothing and items that would otherwise have been thrown away (the second of the three R’s of recycling is Reuse, after all). Plus if I’m lucky, that’s where I discover the vintage Hermès scarves I adore, and for a tenth of the price that they would normally cost.

8. Buy wine with a real cork. Your fabulous instinct is right: Those metal screw caps and plastic corks are not only tacky looking, they’re almost impossible to recycle. Cork, on the other hand, is a renewable resource that can be repurposed into useful products like flooring tiles and insulation. Plus, did you know that cork trees are not cut down to harvest the cork? By using natural cork, you’re actually ensuring the survival of Mediterranean cork forests, which support one of the world’s highest levels of forest biodiversity.

9. Find out what cosmetics are toxic. I’m not saying you have to give up that lip gloss or shine-enhancing conditioner to go green – I like to look pretty as much as the next girl – but it’s amazing how many hazardous, polluting chemicals are lurking in the everyday beauty products we use. I don’t buy a new lotion or mascara without first consulting the Environmental Working Group’s Cosmetic Safety Database – an unbelievably thorough online resource that shows you what ingredients in your product could be potentially harmful.

10. Take a technology break. It’s a cliché, but life moves so darn fast now – texting, iPhones, instant messaging, Twitter. I think more of us would be greater committed to the environmental issues we’re all working so hard to solve if we just took the time to stop — really stop — and smell the roses (sorry, another cliché, but true!). It’s not enough to watch people hiking through forests on the Discovery Channel; sometimes you have to actually go see those forests yourself to really remember why they’re worth saving.

Wishing you all the best for a fabulous and green 2010!

Jennifer Grayson is founding editor of environmental website The Red, White, and Green and green advice columnist for The Huffington Post (Eco Etiquette).

  • Share/Bookmark

Shortcut to Fabulous Shrinking bills and more shoe and handbag money!

2vlwl6wWho: Founded by Samir Kothari and Schwark Satyavolu in 2007, the website that started as a service to compare cell phone service and quickly expanded.

What: BillShrink is the free online money-saving service designed to help people lower their bills on wireless plans, credit cards, gas, and find the best savings accounts and CD’s.

When: The sooner the better!

Where: www.billshrink.com

Why: Because BillShrink helps you cut expenses on intangibles which leaves more money for shoes and bags!

So, click your way to savings enjoy this Shortcut to Fabulous shrinking bills! Make sure you check back tomorrow when Guest Blogger Jennifer Grayson gives you 10 EASY Ways to be Green and Fabulous in 2010. To learn more about Green living visit Jennifer’s website, Red White and Green by clicking here.

  • Share/Bookmark

Check out our team-up with the Savalots for a giveaway!

If you don’t have this bog on your RSS feed, you are missing out on major money saving tips that can reap big rewards…like the kind that can help aid your shoe and bag fund!

Click here for contest details and to visit the Savalot’s blog!

  • Share/Bookmark

Shortcut to Fabulous Laughter at the South Beach Comedy Festival

SBCF_PinkPurple_logo_wTreeThe SOBE Comedy Festival is in town this week from January 21-23, 2010. What better way to support the arts and have a good time than to laugh at some funnny up and coming comedians! Click here to get the schedule of Comedians and where they are playing.

 Acts will perform at the Fillmore Miami Beach at the Jackie Gleason Theatre, Lincoln Theatre, Colony Theater and the Lincoln Road Stage at Euclid Avenue, which is home to the Festival’s outdoor, nightly, free comedy stage. 

Performers include Kevin Hart, Mike Birbiglia, and Joe Rogan. Even if you haven’t heard of these comedians it is worth a night out. You know what they say about laughter? It is contagious and good for the soul!

So, schedule some time for laughter and enjoy this Shortcut to Fabulous Giggles!

  • Share/Bookmark

Shortcuts to Fabulous Fashion for Haiti

So you’ve donated some money, dropped off some non-perishables and medical supplies and you are wondering what else you can do for the relief effort right? Guess what?! You can show support for Haiti, help raise money for the victims of the disaster and quench your thirst for shopping and fashion at the same time! Check out these shoportunities:

427156361v8_350x350_Front

  • Cafe Press has some super cute tees, hats, tote bags and water bottles for sale with a portion of the proceeds going to benefit earthquake victims. Even better: The t-shirt shown here is only $15 and 100% of retail price (that’s right price not profit) goes to benefit U.S. Fund for UNICEF. This shirt would look great with some lighter wash jeans, a jewel tone cardigan and statement ring or earrings. Click here to get the shirt.

il_430xN.116324734

  • $15 from the sale of every Sterling Loved Necklace and Heart ($28.00) will go to benefit the Haiti Relief Effort. How cute is this necklace…can you say “Perfect Valentine’s Day gift?”
  • One Kings Lane- A members-only online shopping site for high end household goods at a deep discount (Think GILT or RueLaLa for home goods) is going to have sales next week with proceeds benefitting the American Red Cross Haitian Earthquake relief effort. Click here to join One Kings Lane and have access to the members only sales.

So, recharge your batteries with some retail therapy and enjoy this shortcut to fabulous fashion for Haiti! Do you know of another great shopping for a cause opportunity? Let us know in the comments section!

  • Share/Bookmark

Shortcut to Fabulous Philanthropy…Let’s Help Haiti

haiti2Every fabulous gal has to give back every once in awhile, and now it is needed more than ever. When a natural disaster strikes a developed country like the United States, the government has the money, resources and infrastructure to respond. However, in developing countries such as Haiti, there is little money, virtually no resources and a fragile infrastructure that cannot adequately respond to crisis. We have an opportunity today, this week, this month to help some people who really need it. If you want to donate money click here to link to the Today show for a list of reputable organizations and contact information. Also, check with your company’s human resources department before you donate. Many companies have matching programs and will match an employees charitable contributions up to a certain amount!!!!

Some of you have experienced the mishandling of charitable contribution in the past and feel uncomfortable donating cash. This is understandable and while cash appears to be what is needed most, below is a list of items that are needed. If you email us at editor @ shortcutstofabulous.com (no spaces) or leave a comment on this post telling us the city you are in, we will find a place for you to drop off the items.

SHELTER:
Sheets
Blankets
Towels
Tents (there are $35 tents at WalMart)
Tarps

POWER:
Candles
Flashlights
Flashlight Batteries – D cells
Matches / lighters
Lanterns + lantern oil

MEDICINE:
Rubbing alcohol
Hydrogen peroxide
Iodine
Bandages
Gauze
Aspirin
Soap
Baby diapers

FOOD:
Canned food with TAB OPENINGS not requiring can openers – soup, tuna, etc
Energy bars
Bottled water

So, please hold your loved ones a little tighter, skip your starbucks or that new pair of shoes this week and take this shortcut to fabulous philanthropy.

  • Share/Bookmark