Monday, November 26, 2012

Gracie Janie


My sweet Gracie Janie entered into eternal rest this morning.  (And by "rest" I mean constant cat napping upon billowy clouds with cat nip and toy mice consistently on hand.)  She is survived by her (yet to properly grieve) mother, sister Tessie Marie (who never really liked her and passed along a violent case of the flu to her when she moved in), Lola Jean (who moved out a while back) and her on-again-off-again canine friend Mary Gertrude (whom she only indulged in the very last weeks of her life).  She is also survived by doting grand-cat-parents who were always willing to help out with her exorbitant vet bills. (When this cat got sick...she GOT SICK!)  They were also so kind to check on her when her mother skipped town...as her mother is wont to do.  She is apparently survived by a litter of kittens, but we never met them.  She showed up at my door immediately after she weened them.  She walked in the door, slept on the bed for three days and never, ever, ever attempted to leave.
For three years Gracie and I JUST inhabited the same space.  She would have nothing to do with me.  She would not come near me, would not allow me to touch her and rarely even acknowledged my presence except to perch on the bathtub every time I stepped in the tub or shower.  (Privacy meant nothing to this one.)  I had to earn her trust by allowing her to just be.  We reached a turning point and from then on she was my sweet girl.  Sure she was irate when I brought all the "others" home; but she always came around, albeit with quiet arrogance.  She tolerated the others; she loved me.
I've known the end was near for quite some time.  For months I had been whispering into her ear, "It is okay to go, sweet girl.  Don't stick around for me.  You just go whenever you need to."  Gracie hated leaving her home and so I was NEVER going to allow her last breaths to be taken outside of this home.  I was at the vet last week and I was assured home euthanasia was an option.  I promised I would call them when I saw her quality of life decline.  But up until last night she was still eating, drinking water, walking around, gingerly of course and loving on her mom.
Apparently she fell asleep in her new favorite spot...in front of the refrigerator...warm for her old bones and she never woke.  After my shower Mary and I bounded downstairs eager for coffee and breakfast and we both stopped in our tracks.  I whispered, "Oh no, oh no, oh no no no..." and Mary barked.  "Stop, Patty.  Think.  What next?  Make certain....touch her head."  At that I saw her empty eyes and sad, foamy mouth.  "Stop, Patty.  Think.  What next?  Shoe box.  No...boot box.  The Ralph Lauren boot box."  Emptying the box I realized Gracie would NEVER lay on a surface if the surface was not covered by something soft and fluffy.  "Stop, Patty.  Think.  What next?  Blanket.  What blanket?  I don't have an extra blanket?  Wait....down stairs...chest of drawers in foyer.  Right.  Yellow silky blanket."  As I picked up her lifeless body...I laid her regally upon the brightest yellow blanket...almost golden and I was struck by the beautiful contrast in color.  I wanted to take a photo to show everyone how dignified she was, even in death.  But I decided it was too macabre.

I finally managed to text mom and dad, call work, keep Mary from licking the remains and clean the area where she slept for her last time.

Her frail body had already started decomposing and had been taken over by a few tiny bugs.  I was horrified.  She must have passed just after I fell asleep.  I felt humiliated for her and ashamed I hadn't noticed she was gone all night.  But as I cleaned the floor I realized our bodies are but a vessel, really.  In the end they grow hard and cold, begin to liquefy and break down...they aren't what defines us at all.  Our soul, our life, our breath...that's the stuff of life.  Maybe I will think twice when I complain about my "vessel" next time....or lament my diminishing botox or fading hair color.  In the end...none of that will matter.  

I have yet to cry.  I think I am mostly happy she is no longer confined to an aging body.  She is now free to be forever young.  God's creations aren't ours...the are gracious loans to be enjoyed and celebrated for every moment He grants.  

Gracie is being cremated.  I am hoping when her ashes return to me...to have a small wake...in the style of Babette on Gilmore Girls.  Remember?  Cinnamon's Wake?  I'll play some Thelonius Monk for my Grace!
This was a beloved cat. -Lorelai

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Sunday, November 25, 2012

Marisa: Interview Part II

Fete:  You look AMAZE.BALLS!  Please share your fitness regime with us!
     Marisa: Yoga and hiking are my two principal modes of fitness.  Not only because they’re great for the body, but because they never cease to teach me lessons on life, love, and spirituality.  Hiking trails through some of the planet’s most gorgeous (and dangerous) wilderness has changed my life in immeasurable ways.  I believe the experience has impacted me so much because like in Yoga, each physical experience is a manifestation of a spiritual principal.  Or that has been the experience for me at least.  When you’re out on a trail, pushing your body to it’s limits, maxims like “Forge your own path” “There’s more than one road to every destination” “Trust your body” etc… become SO real that you can’t help but take that wisdom and apply it to everyday life.  I could go on for days about this… but it’s really an individual experience, and may not occur the same way for everyone.  What I can say is, one way or another these two forms of fitness connect mind, body and spirit in a very powerful way – and engaging in them consistently will inevitably leave you not only healthy and energized, but mentally grounded and spiritually connected.
         Fete:  I know you LOVE living in Los Angeles!  Tell us what a "perfect" day might look like for you.

      Marisa: Lucky for us Angelenos, almost every day in LA is a perfect day!! Weather-wise that is.  ;o)  But having money, free time, and great company also flowing in abundance are a little less frequent.  When they do happen, I love having long, connected conversations…and giving those I care about my undivided attention.  That becomes difficult when there are a lot of people around, so I especially enjoy spending a few hours with only one or two good friends at a time.  My perfect day would start out sharing a beautiful morning yoga practice with someone at The Green Yogi, followed by brunch al fresco at RAW, lounging at the beach with a fresh pressed juice cocktail from Earth Bar, indulging in a deluxe spa treatment of some kind, and wrapping up the evening with a decadent dinner from an eatery like “The Tasting Kitchen” in Venice, specializing in local organic produce and a seasonal one-of-a-kind menu. 
   Fete: You can take me to The Green Yogi and RAW anytime, sister!  Love, love, love those spots!

Marisa: Right?  Something about walking out of The Green Yogi!  Bliss!

         Fete:  You recently purchased your "dream car!"  I understand you named your car Blue Ivy...tell us a little more about that! 

Marisa:  Oh how I love my baby girl Blue Ivy!!
 (Yes, I totally named my car after Beyonce’s baby because 
A. It’s great friggin’ name!  and B. Because I probably love my car as much as Beyonce loves her baby.  Just kidding!  Sort of. )
Anyway, ever since I got my hands on a friend’s Barbie convertible (side note: I never had one of my own.  My barbies rolled around inside some old hand-me-down roller skates), I have always ALWAYS wanted a top down ride.  I custom designed every detail of her, inside and out. Thankfully my taste has matured a little bit, and I went with pastel blue instead of my original vision of pastel pink. ;o)
Fete: Yeah, my Barbie rolled around in my shoes.  I didn't have a car, either!  I sure did want that 
Barbie Corvette.  Whatever...necessity is the mother of invention.  I daresay I might have actually
taught you the Barbie in a shoe trick.  You, however, had the wisdom to actually add wheels
to the whole concept.  Dah, Patty!

Marisa: (Laughing out loud and shaking head in pathetic sympathy!)

Fete: How would your "ideal evening" go down?

      An ideal relaxed evening for me would be to be curled up by a beach campfire.  There’s nothing like the crackling of a fire and the whisper of waves surrounding you in perfect harmony.
           Fete:  Assuming you have time...and don't just plop into bed and immediately fall asleep...what books are on your bedside table right now.

      My current book of choice is a re-read of Deepak Chopra’s “The Spontaneous Fulfillment of Desire”.  Revisiting books that have impacted my life in powerful ways is my version of “mental rejuvenation”.  Next up, I intend to tackle another spiritual work – “A Return to Love” by Marianne Williamson.
       Fete: OMG!  Marianne Williamson's "A Woman's Worth" CHANGED MY LIFE!  I have been going back to it ever since I was 21.  I "liked" Marianne Williamson on Facebook and her posts are so rich and intense...grounds me right back down!

Marisa: She is amazing!  I love her work.

            Fete:  I know you believe in creating your own possibility in life.  Please share what possibilities you are working on creating for yourself right now.
  
      Right now I’m creating the possibility of producing and starring in a critically acclaimed period film based on Native/Latino history in Texas.  There are a lot of beautiful stories that have yet to be told, and I have my mind set on bringing a powerful one to the silver screen!! 


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Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Twilight Giveaway: Autographed Photos of Marisa Quinn

On the eve of Thanksgiving, I am sitting with my family, Marisa's mom in particular, and we are discussing how thankful we are for her success.  We are thankful to the Twilight franchise for including her in this epic film.  We are thankful for the cast and crew who all made her feel right at home...despite the fact that she came on board towards the end.  We are thankful for her Los Angeles "family" who care for her just as lovingly as we would.  Most importantly we are grateful for ALL the prayers that have been sent up on her behalf!

In honor of our deepest gratitude Fete, and Fete's family, is giving away 8 autographed photos of Marisa.  The directions for entry are listed below.  The winner will be notified via email.  Full details of the giveaway are included in the application below.

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Friday, November 16, 2012

Marisa: Interview Part I


Today there is an ENORMOUS amount to celebrate!  Twlight: Breaking Dawn II officially opens at the box office.  And while this normally would mean precious little to me...I am a wee bit of a fan, not a Twihard by any means...this time around I can hardly contain my excitement!  

Our family is proud, so proud, that our sweet Marisa is playing Huilen...an intense and pivotal role in the epic saga.  

In honor of the release...a two part interview and a possible giveaway...hint hint!
       Fete:  After you remove your sleeping mask from your eyes, what is the first thing you do when your feet hit the floor?


      Quinn:  Hahaha… well, first of all, my eye mask is white and fluffy like a comfy puffy cloud.  (Sorry boys, it isn’t silky or sexy at all.)  Honestly, the first thing I do is blindly fumble for eye drops (the one downside of having had Lasik surgery), and stumble toward the kitchen (can you tell I’m not a morning person?) where I stash my rejuvenating gel eye mask – SWEET RELIEF!!!  Once I have that cold jolt of puff-reducing fabulousness, I’m ready to start the day!
   Fete:  I know that you have always suffered sensitive skin...which is difficult considering the work you do is IN FRONT OF A CAMERA!  Please share with us your skin care routine.

Quinn:   My skin care routine is all about Dr. Hauschka.  Using all natural botanicals, his holistic skincare system is all about supporting your skin’s natural process of renewal.  Less is more is his philosophy, and he believes our skin has a natural capacity to heal, moisturize, and maintain itself without overindulgence or dependence on man-made products.  As a woman with dry skin who swore I could never go even 5 minutes without my moisturizer – I can tell you after a few weeks I was a complete believer.  I now never use moisturizer or any kind of cream at night – rather I allow my skin to do what mother nature intended it to.  My once “dry skin” has turned completely normal, and with the support of a natural supplement called “Purvana” my skin stays clear and healthy.


Fete: Your sister Sarah once said, "Marisa doesn't just have hair...she has a mane!"  Tell us your secret to GREAT, healthy hair!

 Quinn: My most powerful secret to having great hair is… just RECOGNIZING that your hair IS great!  As women, I think we so often fall into the trap of wanting what we don’t have.  For so many years I tried to fight my curls – battling them into stick straight submission with straighteners and blow dryers and constant heat torture.   The problem was I just didn’t know how to make the most of what God gave me.  Curls are very different than straight hair – and even the way I shampoo is different depending on whether I want to do a straight style or amp up my natural waves.  The secret to awesome curls is to never ever comb them out, not even in the shower.  Use a “low poo” shampoo (I like Deva Curl), and a hydrating conditioner – apply both but do NOT comb out the tangles like you would with straight hair.  Just let it sit on the hair, and crunch up the curls as if you were using a diffuser.  Gently rinse most of the conditioner out, and then apply a curl enhancer before you even exit the shower.  Crunch those curls again to squeeze out the water, then gently wrap hair with a microfiber towel (regular terry cloth causes frizz!).  A good ol’ natural Air Dry is what really makes my curls look their best, but a blow dry on LOW using a diffuser is a great option as well.  However, my best advice is simply to remember your hair is as unique as you are, and only you can determine what works best for YOU!

Fete: You once told me you've never had a manicure!  Now I KNOW that is no longer true as I saw something on the internet showing a fab manicure/color treatment!  Have you started getting mani/pedis what with all these events and red carpets?

      Quinn: You crack me up.  I never said I had NEVER had a mani/pedi, I just said that I NEVER get them.  Well, never on the regular.  They’ve always just been a special treat once or twice a year. In the past, because I could never afford them, and now – because I generally just don’t have time.  I’ve gotten pretty good at doing it myself, and multi-tasking in my home office between coats.  But let me tell ya, I recently had my first legit “Deluxe” mani/pedi at the Ritz in downtown Los Angeles, and HOLY BANANAS was it AWESOME!!!  I look forward to the days when I will have both the time and the money to enjoy that more often!!
Fete: We come from a LONG LINE of fabulously well groomed, well kept, gorgeous women who CLEARLY know how to maintain their inner and outer beauty despite the passage of years.  They have NEVER been shy about "telling us" how to maintain a solid health, diet and beauty regimen.  What bit of advice stands out to you?  For me...it is NEVER let your nail polish chip off...NEVER!  And only use your ring finger when applying ANYTHING TO YOUR EYE...it is the finger with the least amount of strength, doing the least amount of damage!  What life lesson or piece of wisdom have the women in our family taught you that you have carried with you?

Quinn: Yes, we do!  The beauty lesson I learned from my mother was to be exceedingly gentle with your skin.  Treat your face like a delicate rosebud, and it will stay looking as fresh as one! Life lesson: Never put yourself in a position where you are completely financially or emotionally dependent on a man.  Wisdom: Be true to yourself.  No matter what others think –if you are right with you and right with God, you are gonna be alright.
Check in for Part II of this interview...coming soon!


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Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Twilight: Breaking Dawn II-On the Black Carpet

This family could not be more proud!  On Monday, our sweet girl walked the "black carpet" for the premier of Twilight: Breaking Dawn Part II.

Marisa plays a South American Vampire called Huilen. I will not give away one more detail.  Suffice it to say...there is a BIG twist in the movie.  One most Twi-hards will never see coming...but thoroughly enjoy.  

Two days and counting!




Styled by: Scott Rose

Clutch: Deepa Gurnani
Earrings: Charlotte Lu
Ring: Our grandmother's (we trade it off each time we see each other or when we KNOW one of us is really gonna "need it!"  I can't think of a better reason to wear "the cousinhood of the traveling ring!")


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Saturday, November 3, 2012

Coffee, Coffee, COFFEE!


In the spirit of autumn, which has NOT arrived where I live, Fete is teaming up with A Thrifty Diva to offer you the opportunity to win a 40 dollar gift card to Starbucks!

Scroll down and enter yourself!  There are up to eight entry opportunities.  I believe all of you who already "like" Fete on Facebook are automatically entered...however there are other opportunities for you to earn extra entries!  Click away....

This giveaway ends on November 30, 2012!
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