Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Sweet Summertime…Come Back to Me!

Well…the time has come. We "can't" wear white anymore and there are not nearly enough valid excuses to leave work early to focus on your tan.

It just comes and goes way too quickly. The end of summer is never bittersweet for me. It's just sad!

I know I know…I can't really complain given that I live in sunny California and it's like summer year-round. But trips back home to the South remind me that I actually miss that suffocating humidity...sometimes.

It's been a great summer! Trips to Nashville, Charleston, Vegas and good ole Southwest Virginia always gave me something fun to look forward to when sitting in an air-conditioned office building. There were new babies and bridal showers to celebrate too! I've gotta say…I didn't realize until I left small town Abingdon, VA just how much I love that place. Hanging with the fam and enjoying the beauty of small town life won't be taken for granted anymore, that's for sure!

Back to summer…There were tons of fun country concerts to attend and interviews to be had! I chatted with Dee Jay Silver, The Cadillac Three, Leah Turner and Jamie Lynn Spears! So much fun!

Hangin with The Cadillac Three at The Troubadour
I got to be a lady who lunches (my dream) a few times this summer and had plenty of time to binge watch Scandal and DCC Making the Team. Yes, that's the Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders show on CMT. Don't judge...I'm obsessed.

Me and my roomie…and Damon Wayans Jr.

Oh hey Tim Riggins!

I went to the "Let's Be Cops" movie premiere…which was AMAZING!! Two of my ABSOLUTE faves from New Girl - Damon Wayans Jr. and Jake Johnson aka Nick Miller had me literally laughing out loud during that movie. Y'all have to see it. No joke.

And I got to go the EMMY's this year!! Talk about the best experience EVER! It was so amazing. I mean I did manage to meet my end all be all crush Tim Riggins from Friday Night Lights, so basically life made. Yes…I was shaking haha! I don't think it gets any better than that people.

As my ode to sweet summertime…here's a look back in photos at some of the highlights of my summer:

Happy 4th of July!!

YAY TRISHIE!!! Angel's getting married!
Chillin with the coolest country DJ ever - Dee Jay Silver
Beach trips with my DAWG!
Interviewing Leah Turner at The Greek Theatre

That time at the Emmy's with my Pretty Little Liars ;)
So precious! Baby Layton

Oh hey there Brad Paisley!
The Emmy's - view from the top!

So cool!!! EMMY'S

Yep - the ice bucket challenge got me! I donated too!

Can't forget all that summer relaxation…
My Diddy loves him a good pedi!

Best place to go for some quality "thinking" time!
The Creeper Trail is the BEST!
Gotta have a bathroom pic at the Emmy's
VEGAS babyyyyy
Now, that's a summer to remember! Since this year is deemed #25theyeartothrive, I have to say I've been making it a point to take advantage of new experiences and opportunities…and it's been a super fun summer!

So I say let's soak up the rest of summer 2014 to the best of our ability. Life's all about making memories, so why not get out there and do just that?! I guarantee you'll be grateful you did!

Any suggestions on how to wrap up summertime in style? Send them my way y'all!

Always have faith!!

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Oh Nashville…you have my heart!

I can't even begin to describe the amazingness that was CMA Fest 2014. Seriously like the best week EVER!!!

Not only was it jam-packed with performances all day, every day from the best in country music…I mean Carrie Underwood joined Miranda Lambert on stage for "Somethin' Bad" and I died. And Luke Bryan shook that tooshie like nobody's business. Then Faith Hill came on stage to perform with her hubby Tim McGraw and he copped a big ole feel in front of the crowd of thousands. Like I just can't.

But it was hands-down the best people watching in the world. You've got guys in daisy dukes, more glitter and rhinestones than you could imagine, and just straight up rednecks having the time of their lives. I don't know that anything can top this crazy week!

It almost got to the point where all I wanted was a dern nap!

My week kicked off with Craig Campbell's 2nd Annual Cornhole Challenge. Why not watch country stars play cornhole for a good cause?! The proceeds go to the TJ Martell Foundation for colon cancer research and awareness. Some of the artists there were Lee Brice, Jerrod Niemann, Chase Rice, Parmalee, The Cadillac Three, and many more!

Here are a few pics and look out for my interviews with the artists on AfterbuzzTV!

Country boys playin' some cornhole (& having a beer of course) 

 Me w/ up-and-comer Chelsea Bain
 Me with the man of the event Mr. Craig Campbell

 Me w/ 3 of the 4 boys of Parmalee

Me w/ The Cadillac Three

Such a fun time! And trust me…the fun (and the heat) never ends. The cool thing about Nashville is that it's just not Hollywood. Now don't get me wrong, I love a good Hollywood celeb spotting now and again, but it's just so relaxed and laid back in Music City that the artists are straight chillin' at the bar with you. It's just feels like the good ole South.

Speaking of the South…I don't think I can drink another beer for the life of me! One thing's for sure...CMA Fest is an all day, every day kinda party!

Me and my girl Traci on Night 1 (Can you tell we're excited?!)

I did catch some great performances during the day too!

By far the guy to be on the lookout for is Sam Hunt. This dude's got it! There's not a doubt in my mind he's gonna be HUGE!

I also stopped by the HGTV Lodge during the day for great intimate performances as well. It's so cool y'all…they literally build a barn the week of CMA Fest and then tear it down after!

Here's Chase Rice performing for the crowd:

Any chance I get when I'm back home…I go for that Southern cookin…and this was my all-time fave meal of the week:

I mean what's better than some BBQ and baked beans? And sweet tea, of course! SO YUMMYYY!!!

Another awesome event I got to cover was the City of Hope Celebrity Softball Game. It was bright and early on Saturday morning, but a lot of your fave country stars rallied together to #StrikeOutCancer

It was #TeamOpry versus #TeamiHeartRadio, and in the end the Opry team took home the win. The event raised over $200,000 for cancer research, a cause that obviously hits home to me because of my momma, so it was definitely a special event for me to cover. I've got tons of interviews from the day, so I'll make sure to post them on AfterbuzzTV asap!

Here a few candid pics from the event:

That's Dee Jay Silver, Scotty McCreery and Eric Decker chatting before the game 

Nashville fans…that's DEACON CLAYBORNE! What a sexy man! ;)

Jamie Lynn Spears, Florida Georgia Line and Jana Kramer were amongst the celebs at the game. Such an awesome game and the crowd loved it!

Then, I was gearing up for the night of performances at LP Field and lo and behold it's raining cats and dogs! It was INSANE!! That kind of crazy weather is one thing I don't miss. Cali's sunshine will always win! But have no fear, all ya gotta do to weather the storm is invest in a cow design poncho and traipse the streets of Broadway in the pouring rain. Definitely a night to remember, especially when you're up this close and personal when FGL takes the stage…

What can I say...CMA Fest 2014 was seriously one of the best weeks ever. I already can't wait until next year, although with all that Southern food and Bud Light, this girl needs a detox, y'all!

Overall: amazing people, stellar performances and a week I'll never forget...

Until next time…

Always have faith!!

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Southern Summer Style: My Top 5 Must-Haves

In celebration, or more like contempt, for this 100 degree weather...(it's LA, people! shew!), I've decided it's time to bring out those summer fashion ideas. Gotta keep that Southern summer style going out here in Hollywood!

So here's my "Southern girl with a Hollywood flair" inspired summer style must-haves!

1. Anything Chevron-esque.

Have I told y'all about the new business cards I made?! I'm totally obsessed with the navy/pink Chevron print…like to the point where I keep handing them out to everybody because they're to die for! See for yourself:

But take the trend one step further and wear it! How cute is this Chevron Maxi dress from Pinterest?! I have one almost exactly like it, and not only is it super comfy, but someone always pays me a compliment! :)

2. Sport those bright jewel-toned colors! 

Nothing says summer like lookin' pretty in pink! Or purple…or turquoise. Even cherry apple red for that matter! Let your outfits express your sunny disposition this summer. Bring out that "HAPPY" you've got inside (thanks to listening to Pharell nonstop we've all got a little ;)) through what you wear, because there's no excuse not to!

3. Pastel or NEON nails

Don't forget that sometimes the best accessory you can wear is a good set of painted nails. If wearing bright clothes is too much for you…cause let's be honest, we all like that slimming black on black outfit…then ease into the bright trend by painting that color on your nails! 

Like this:

4. Floral, floral EVERYWHERE!!

No joke…the last time I went shopping, I bought like 7 different floral outfits to the point that my roommate was like, "you have a problem." Oops! 

From sundresses to rompers, I'm all about feeling feminine and pretty in some floral garb. It screams summer to me! Plus, with a floral pattern, it makes it super easy to pair with simple accessories like nude wedges, denim shirts and studs. 

5. Nautical-inspired outfits (4th of July, anyone?!)

I don't know about y'all, but sometimes I like to pretend that I could totally live on a boat all summer, having barbecues and sailing the high seas, all while looking super cute in my red, white & blue (AMURICA) outfits and sipping a Bud Light Lime…(yes, I'm a girl and would pick a Bud Light Lime as the beer of choice any day haha).

So this summer, get some white jeans, red dresses and navy skirts, throw on some fun wedges and channel your inner Zooey Deschanel (aka New Girl's Jessica Day). If all else fails, at least you'll have fun imagining you're a boat captain!   

There are my Top 5 summer trend ideas...

Okay, okay…I have one more trend I'm totally in love with. 

These hand-chain bracelets are so pretty and make any outfit. I can't get enough of mine!!

So, there you have it. My Top 5 (plus an extra) Southern Summer Must-Haves. Keepin' country in the city! Now take these fun trends on your summer vacays and have a blast. 

And don't forget that sunscreen, y'all!

Hope Summer 2014 is the best one yet!!

Always have faith!!

Monday, May 5, 2014

Wasn't Foolin' Around this April!

It's been one of those months…

Jam-packed with fun trips and new experiences…and there are many more to come!

So let's go back to the beginning.

In the weeks leading up to April, all I can think about is I'm about to get country-fied. Vegas is calling my name for the 49th Annual Academy of Country Music Awards. How could you not get excited about "The Week Vegas Goes Country?" There are tons of performances and great red carpet fashion and everywhere you look, there's a country star around the corner.

It was such a blast! I got to chat with some of your fave country crooners and hang out backstage in the press room for the show. Definitely a trip I'll never forget! Here are just a few of the fun things I experienced…

What girl would ever complain about watching some country studs compete for an archery win? Not me! Oh hey Chase Rice, Tyler Hubbard, Luke Bryan & Justin Moore!

And like I said, there were some stellar performances. You just can't get enough!

It's up close and personal with Mr. Brett Eldredge:

Then it was showtime. The red carpet arrivals were super fun to watch. There are literally tons of people camped out hoping to catch a glimpse of their fave singers. Fans literally scream at the top of their lungs to get their attention, and yes, some fans were crying…

It's also kind of hilarious that the same cars drop off a star and circle back to the same hotel where the show is taking place to pick up another one and drive right back to the carpet. Oh red carpets!

Lot of huge country stars took home ACM's this year and came back to chat with press about what it's like adding an ACM award to their name.

Here are a few pics of some of the winners. Can you say King George, anyone?!

Then there's country music's firecracker, Miranda Lambert!

And the sweetest and most humble sibling trio, The Band Perry.

Let's not forget what other fun was had. Once a small town SWVA girl, always a SWVA girl. Oh hey Abingdon friends! Thanks for a great dinner and teaching me your gambling techniques! ;)

#NashVegas was a blast as always. Can't wait til next year's ACM Awards!

Back to work for a few days, then it was off to San Diego, where I lived on a boat for a night! Who woulda thought!

Talk about a gorgeous and relaxed city…drastically different than traffic all-day every-day LA!

I felt super nautical chillin' on my friend's boat. For a second I didn't know what to do with myself since there was nowhere to be and nothing I had to do. Not gonna lie, I was a little anxious with so much time haha!

See how gorgeous the harbor is?! What a life!

Fast forward to the next weekend where I was lucky enough to head to Sony Studios to watch the latest installment (#50 to be exact) of CMT Crossroads being filmed! Ahhhh Katy Perry and Kacey Musgraves!

Such a cool concept of a show - bringing together a country artist with an artist from a different genre. They sing each other's songs together! Super cool.

Catch the show on CMT on June 13th! Here's a sneak peek of the set:

Of course there were palm trees…ROAR ;)

Next thing you know I'm off to the desert for California's largest country music festival aka STAGECOACH!!!!!

And it did not disappoint. The performers were on fire and the fashion was AMAZING…as in there were multiple guys in Daisy Dukes… Like how can you not stare?!

Of course it was a HUGE party. You're in the desert with not much else to do besides drink you a beer and hang with friends while listening to the likes of Eric Church, Jason Aldean and Luke Bryan. Not too shabby!

Plus talk about a gorgeous California sunset…

Then it was off to Music City to round out this amazing month. Told you I wasn't foolin' around this April!

Stay tuned for more on my latest trip and why Nashville has this Southern gal's heart…

#25theyeartothrive, people!

Always have faith!!