Margin Call is currently playing nationwide.
Together with my boyfriend, family and friends, I attended a private screening of the movie, Margin Call yesterday. It is an incredible film that chronicles the fall of an investment firm, that inevitably led to the 2008 financial crisis.
Benaroya Pictures, a film finance and production company with a loyal Seattle following, produced the film. The cast is exceptional, the dialogue riveting and the editing supurb. The New Yorker even declared the film one of 2011's best. And as a devoted New Yorker reader, I've seen enough reviews to know if the New Yorker likes your film, you've clearly hit the jackpot. Congratulations Benaroya Pictures and thank you for sharing this pivotal story with the world.
Margin Call is currently playing nationwide.
If you know me well enough you also know I'm a skincare freak of nature. I think if I had to choose between a free shopping spree to buy new skincare products or a free clothes spree, I'd choose the former.
I take a lot of pride in maintaining a healthy glow and LOVE when make up artists tell me "You really don't need much make up" because that tells me I'm doing something right!
Cleansers I swear by:
Peter Thomas Roth Anti-Aging Gel and Beauty Society's Set Me Free
Moisturizers that leave me hydrated and protected:
Lancome Bienfiat Multi-Vital, Lancome Aqua Fusion and Shiseido Matifying
NOTE: Aqua Fusion has recently been discontinued. Le sad.
Sunscreen for July-September in Seattle and other sun vacations:
Beauty Society's Making Shade and Kiehl's Vital Sun Protection in SPF 30
Masque for weekly hydration and pore cleansing:
Kiehl's Rare Earth Pore Cleansing Masque & Beauty Society's Hydrating Baby Calm Down
Anti-aging Serum and Eye Cream:
Prevage Anti-Aging Serum & Lancome Renergie Eye Anti-Wrinkle:
And last but not least, treat yourself to a monthly facial. I haven't found a gal in Seattle yet that has compared to my fabulous Daiva, Owner of Buckhead Grand European Spa, in Atlanta so I'm open to suggestions please! If you are ever in Atlanta, she will give you the facial of a lifetime!
Sometimes it's nice to let the pictures do the talking. That's why I've composed this slideshow of some of the things I love. Enjoy.
My cousin Rylan and I
I don't like to sugarcoat anything so that's why I'm going to start off by saying that this past decade has been the most tumultuous, rewarding, melancholy, exploratory, difficult period of my life thus far.
That's right. It wasn't easy. Personal challenges, career struggles, identity seeking moments that I wouldn't change because its brought me to where I am today.
10 years ago, I was a junior college student charting my course to a career as an international journalist.
Today, I find myself happily employed full-time with a high end internet retail company that allows me daily use and development of my current skills and talent.
10 years ago, I was single, vowing that I was and would always be a career-obsessed woman who would not have the time for a spouse or children.
Today, I find myself in the healthiest of relationships and looking forward to the day that I decide it's time to start a family.
10 years ago, I vowed that my globe-trotting ways would never cease and desist; telling my parents that there was no way I would end up living in Seattle.
Today, well...you know. I'm here for good and not going anywhere. (At least, for right now)
My, my things have changed, haven't they?
That's why I've compiled 10 things I've Learned In My 20s.
My Mom and I
1. Family Will Always Be There. I couldn't have battled through some incredibly tough periods of my life if it wasn't for the constant love and support from my family. They have seen me through it all. Promotions, layoffs, break ups, break downs.
2. Don't Be Afraid to Be Who You Really Are. I'm a bookworm, go to sleep really early, not a big drinker, don't exercise and would rather hang out with my parents than attend a keg party. And there was a time that I thought the above made me boring and "uncool." I came to a place where I am DARN proud of all the aforementioned - 9:30 PM bedtimes and all.
My boyfriend and I
3a. Love Yourself First. I know it sounds cliche but you've really got to have a strong sense of self before you're able to fully understand what it means to be in a healthy relationship. I found out what that meant at 29. It takes time, so be patient and enjoy loving yourself and let fate dictate the rest.
3b. Address Your Health. I don't keep secret that I've suffered from debilitating depressive episodes in my life. Whether it's your physical or mental health, address it. You've got a lot of life to live and the sooner you take care of yourself; the sooner you'll be on a path of light.
4. Volunteer. During times of brief unemployment or crazy hours, some of the most rewarding work I've done is volunteer. Whether its been passing out food at the Jewish Family Service food bank, teaching an underprivileged child how to read, or organizing massive events to benefit the World Affairs Council, all have brought me back to the greater purpose of life.
(L to R) Jesse, Me, Simone & Sacha
5.Choose Your Friends Wisely. I don't talk badly about my friends and vice versa. Your close friends should be supportive of your success in life; not jealous, catty, negative or carry secrets. You'd be surprised how many people out there don't have real friendships. So choose your friendships wisely and rid yourself of ones that don't feel right.
6. Become a Mentor. I've enthusiastically embraced young women who look to connect and learn from seasoned professionals. Helping them achieve their goals has been just as rewarding as volunteering. I distinctly remember training two interns while with CNN Domestic who both ended up becoming full-time employees shortly thereafter.
7. Learn to Say No. This has been especially challenging for both myself and my best friend Whitney. We've been people pleasers since we were young and don't like disappointing anyone. However, I know now more than ever (especially this year) that if you're good at something, you're likely in high demand. There are only 24 hours in a day and you can't be everything to everyone. Learn to say no and don't take on more than you can chew. You and your health will be better for it.
On King 5's New Day Northwest
8. Never Say Never. This goes back to the point I made earlier, vowing at the tender age of 21 that I was never going to live in Seattle. The same goes for television. I was pushed to acknowledge or heed others' advice that I should "be on air." I firmly rejected it again and again on the premise that I wanted to be "the brains behind the camera." It took 10 years for me to say, "Ok, ok Mom, you were right. I guess I can do talent work."
9. Pick Up The Phone. The digital age has handicapped us in a way. For all the wonderful ways technology has shaped our lives, it has also made cross-country friendships resort to written communication only (email & text, specifically). I'm still working on being consistently better at picking up the phone to call Molly in NYC or Caroline, Ayesha, Tiffany and Melissa in the ATL or Erin in Chicago. It's important and makes a world of difference.
10. You will Outlive Some of Your Best Friends.
Our dog Lulu passed away earlier this year. It was especially hard on me as we had a very special relationship. Lulu was there for me during times of loneliness, heartache, professional upheaval and triumph. But deep down, I know she knew how much I loved and took care of her. I couldn't have been a better sister to Lulu and that has brought me some peace. Most of us will outlive someone near and dear to our heart. Being the best mother, daughter, sister, brother, cousin, friend, granddaughter, partner you can during the times we do have is the only thing within your control. So make it count.
I feel very fortunate to have a mentor and friend in Amanda Brotman. I admire her incredible work ethic and humble nature. Amanda inspires me as she has created a sophisticated brand from scratch! Coming from an entrepreneurial family, Amanda joins the ranks of a wide array of innovative Seattelites who have made it to the big time with her Amanda Pearl handbag and jewelry line. Many of you may be familiar with her brother Justin's organic health-food store, Healeo up on Capital Hill. If not, it's a MUST GO!
But, back to Amanda, I really wanted to share some insight into her success. Enjoy and look for everything Amanda Pearl at www.amandapearl.com!
JVP: You've really accomplished quite a lot in such a short time. What has been the biggest challenge thus far?
AB: The whole thing has been a big challenge! There are so many little pieces that have to be in place for the business to work and every little piece is challenging to develop and keep working when you're a small start up. From getting reduced quantities of raw materials, getting lower minimums at factories (heck, even convincing factories to work with my tiny business) to getting through to buyers just to take a look at the collection. Things are in constant flux and NOTHING is easy.
Actress Emma Stone wearing the Mimi color block Roll Clutch
JVP: How do you leverage your brand among the celebrity elite? Has it been a difficult process?
AB: Like everything else, it does take time. Everyone is definitely brand conscious and hesitant to embrace unfamiliar brands and shapes, so something that a stylist might have passed over 2 years ago, now they're obsessed with. We just continued to present the collection to the stylists and continued to develop the brand and the clutches started to catch on with everyone. Now you can see gaggles of ladies carrying our clutches on the red carpet!
JVP: To date, what is the most popular Amanda Pearl item you've sold?
AB: The Roll Clutch! It's such a modern classic but at the same time it is not a shape you typically see, which adds to the allure. It comes in so many colors (you must collect them all) and fits all your necessities--iPhone, lippy, keys, cash, etc. It's a must have.
Amanda in Manhattan Magazine
JVP: Finish this sentence. I love what I do because.....
AB: I get to fantasize about glamorous worlds and create beautiful things to go in them!
JVP: Words of advice for those up and coming designers that want to be the Amanda Pearls of the future?
AP: Spend time interning/working for other people who do what you want to do. Learn everything you can before you set out on your own so you know how to do what needs doing and have some idea of what you'll be in for!
JVP: You are obviously a very happily married woman with a little pup Fidel! How do you balance personal and professional?
AB: It does take discipline. As an entrepreneur and small business owner, it's very easy to work every waking moment. There's always something to do! We try to carve out quiet time together at night when we get home and try to have our "date brunch" on Saturday mornings before going to work.
JVP: When you're not working, what is your favorite hobby or activity?
AB: I love brunch, the flea market, museums, movies, knitting... I have all sorts of fantasies about the things I could do if I had downtime!
Follow Amanda on Twitter @amandapearly