Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Thirty is the New Thirty

Sorry, buried in weekend (not a bad thing!), then work (dear lord, one of these days I'll catch up!). A few more hostesses left, but in the meantime, you're friends & family, right?

P.S. Big fat news: NBC optioned Momzillas for their Fall 2008 lineup! And if does make it on the air, I've been promised a cameo (assumably I'll be like Mediocre Waitress #3, but who cares?!?!).

Friday, May 25, 2007

Fabulous Washington Hostesses:
Susan Mary Alsop

Random trait: “Bores” were simply not allowed to come to a fabled Alsop dinner, Kennedys preferred.

Buy: Anything from Victoria and Richard; A donation to Save the Terrapin to make up for her turtle soup fetish.

Read: To Marietta from Paris: 1945-1960 by Susan Mary Alsop; Sister: The Life of Legendary American Interior Decorator Mrs. Henry Parish II by Apple Parish Bartlett.

Do: Marry a gay gossip writer (not a bad second marriage, methinks) yet don’t gossip; Get loaners from John Galliano* ; Serve simple but good fare when entertaining; Be known by your first and middle names ALWAYS; Have sapphire blue blood.

*But please, please don’t involve me. The last time I was involved with a loaner it was a $7k fringed Lanvin dress/work of art I put on a model—who, unbeknownst to me, had horrid b.o. I spent about half of my 10th anniversary bent over that damn dress with baby wipes and a hairdryer. So not cool.

Another Interruption

We once again interrupt BabsieD Hostess Week to announce that last night, at 8:48 p.m., I signed my last client. My client list is now full, save for some occasional events and consulting. And clients: They. Are. Awesome.

I'm so excited that i just may pee myself (which would not be very D-I-T of me at all).

Thursday, May 24, 2007

Fabulous Washington Hostesses:
Vangie Bruce

Random trait: Respected authority on French history (and author of the highly-acclaimed Napoleon and Josephine: An Improbable Marriage), the wife to the Ambassdor of France+ hated being called a hostess (note to D-I-T’s: if you entertain hundreds at your ridiculously sick house at 34th and O, the title is going to stick).

Buy: One Chanel suit that will carry you through the ages; French Press* ($89, Sur La Table, Non-Scary Tysons and DC); Annick Goutal fragrance ($125, Blue Mercury, Georgetown).

Read: A Lady, First by Letitia Baldridge (which is about Jackie but touches on Evangeline a lot), French Women For All Seasons (with the R. Nichols cover, but of course) by Mireille Guiliano.

Do: Be skinny, marry your boss, be known for your fabulous Sunday brunch.

*One of my favorite things in the whole world is to stop by the house of my friend M, the original D-I-T, for some French Press coffee and gossip in the morning. Such a great way to start a day!

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Cougar No Mas

We interrupt BabsieD Hostess Week to bring you my new replacement term for "Cougar," of which I'm a about-to-be borderline member so I'm definitely in favor of a rename.


You like?

Fabulous Washington Hostesses:
Evalyn Walsh McLean

Random trait: Used to put the Hope Diamond on the collar of her Great Dane to shock her dinner guests.

Buy: Alligator-embossed crystal bone dog collar ($82, The Posh Pooch).

Read: Father Struck It Rich by Evalyn Walsh McLean

Do: Get rid of all bad luck charms, even if valuable; stroll by the Indonesian Embassy, the original Walsh-McLean home.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Fabulous Washington Hostesses:
Katherine Graham

Random trait: wouldn’t allow the men to separate post-dinner for cigars and liqueur.

Buy: Signature Cocktail created for your tres fabulous salon (starting at $225 including 50 customized recipe coasters, The Liquid Muse)*; Willem Smith & Co. Stedman Valet built to humidor standards ($1,499, available through special order at Apres Peau).

Read: Personal History by Katherine Graham, one of the greatest autobiographies ever written.

Do: Get a sick wrap dress (reminiscent of the DVF blousy contraption I scored at the WaPo Shoppers’ Gals Clothing Swap last eve), always take the high road and the calculated risk when given the opportunity, have great posture.

*Had two at DCCeline's shower--both were absolutely original and amazing. A great housewarming gift.

Monday, May 21, 2007

Fabulous Washington Hostesses:
Pamela Harriman

Now that spring events season is here and the weather is perfection, I'm feeling inspired because a.) my house is justhisclose to be able to host events and b.) I just had lunch with two fabulous Washington hostesses at Leopold's (plus lunch with another fantastic one at Atlantico a few days ago--that guacamole is To. Die. For. Sorry, sidetrack). So I think this week will be a tribute to the all-time greats, in no particular order:

Pamela Harriman
Random Trait:
kept her notepad and pen with her at the dinner table to note things of interest

Buy: Moleskine Washington, DC City Journal, $17, at Moleskines or Plaza Art, DC; Mrs. John L. Strong Silver Banded Tablet Clip, $195, at

Read: Reflected Glory by Sally Bedell Smith

Do: Put out for your favorite billionaire, fast for an entire day before you go to look your most fabulous (?!), don’t go swimming at the Ritz if you’re feeling a bit woozy.

Friday, May 18, 2007

Celebration of Vodka

Last night, headed to the Whitman Walker Clinic Gala, "A Celebration of Life."

So for starters, I was fairly decked: Carmen Marc Valvo tie-dyed beaded scarf dress, alligator Blahniks, good jewelry. But still, save for the woman wearing a knee-length black skirt, black panty hose and mules to the black-tie gala, I felt like the worst dressed person in the room. That was just fabulous x 500.

The VIP room: lots of money, no one I recognized save for Will Thomas (it was pretty crowded, though). Met some fab folks, bumped into a few friends. Event was catered by Ellen at Occasions (get Ellen to run your next event and you will not be disappointed. I use her for EVERYTHING).

Next, while driving home, passed Alex and saw some balloons at their door. Headed in to a fun party--a launch party for local design company Iky Clothing. Tried on and couldn't pass up the CUTEST lightweight wool grey dress from a French designer whose name escapes me, so we'll just call them French Frencherson.

Spring events season is in full swing!

Thursday, May 17, 2007

The Smallest Town in the Universe

My theory, as I've said before, is that really, only 400 people live in this town. There's some secret casting agency somewhere that cycles in about 150 or so extras in the background to mix up the scene a bit, but the main cast is 400. That theory is proven every day, but especially yesterday...

Started out by stopping by my fave store, Apres Peau. If you didn't get to stop by the bookstore last night, they still have a few copies of Hugh Newell Jacobsen's book available. And if you see some calligraphy around the store, that's mine! (couldn't afford a calligrapher when I got married eons ago, so I became one). And, on another side note, if Politics and Prose is out of signed copies of Momzillas, there are still a few left at Borders at the Biltmore Fashion Park in Phoenix, and they will ship!

...but I digress. Anyway, headed to lunch with a fabulous editor-just really cool, smart, just dig her. Turns out that we have a lot in common--she is friendly with the greatest stationer of all time, my great friend Nick at R. Nichols, went to high school across the street from the restaurant where I worked all through college and knows all of the kids I used to manage, just lots of funny random things like that. Had a great time.

We lunched at Mio, which opened on Vermont-yesterday was its first day for lunch. The decor: beautiful. The food: meh. Server not so overly well trained, the first three things we asked for were not available, the dessert was, well, kind of gross. It was their first day, so I will cut them a bit of slack on most, but don't know if I'll go back for a while.

Walking out of the restaurant, I bumped into three of my favorite women from the job I left just a few months ago. I was just down the street from my old office, so not entirely a fluke, but still. The people I worked with were phenomenal--smart, hilarious, cool co-workers all, but I don't miss it the job itself, not even a little bit. They said that they were just talking about the fact that they missed having me around--they may have just been saying that to be nice, but it still made me a little happy inside nonetheless.

Next, a flurry of racing around, traffic, picking up my big boy three year old (!) son-seriously, where have THREE YEARS gone?, then off to the Poste party--client was one of the sponsors. Hung out with some more favorite peeps--some hostesses from my Marimekko event last week, some more just way cool editors and their bfs, and the most hilarious publisher of all time, Peter Abrahams. Such a good guy. Such a smartass. The rain didn't keep the crowds away at all--it was a great bunch.

Next, off to the CF party at Ceviche in Silver Spring. The Shues: both just as good looking in person. Was dying to meet Andrew, but knew that I would be all Melrose-Place-blathery, so didn't bother. While chatting with some peeps, a woman joined the conversation. She started talking about data--I'm one of those weirdos who Just. Loves. Data. Number crunching makes me ohsoveryhappy. Strategic analysis? Sends me over the moon.

Anyway, she dropped the fact that she works for a huge company known for their statistical analysis. It was a few cocktails into the evening, but the name still rang familiar. Then it dawned on me: that was my old company (they've changed their name) that I left just last July. She worked on my old events, I think she may even be in my old office. I was at Ceviche in Silver Spring, and my old office was in Chantilly, VA, so that was just the strangest coincidence of the evening.

Party started clearing out, so off I headed, down East-West, back to my little house, soon to be a slightly bigger house once our renovation is done (maybe 2 weeks!). Tucked in my little sweet baby boy, knowing that it was a futile effort--ever since he was born and he was like Houdini getting out of his swaddling, he's hated being confined, hated being told what to do. No idea where he gets that at all (coughcough).

Then off to sleep, on to my next day, my next big adventure. I love my job.

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Moving on: Big Night!

So for starters, who doesn't need the perfect Father's Day present?

...and if you're in the market for an architect, well, that will definitely be the place to be (I know, I invited them...)

Next: off to Happies!

And finally, looks like we started a little trend here...

...don't forget to stop by Marimekko for a fun outfit for your next big night!

Saturday, May 12, 2007

Read: He's Just Not That Into You.

I have a client who is famous. I used to get all kinds of flustered around famous people, but seeing it from a different perspective has made me realize how bizarre and inappropriate people can be.

I was at a bookstore with Client, and there were people just circlingcirclingcircling our aisle just trying to, I don't know, get C's attention, I guess. Walking down streets, if C is looking down, people will almost get on the floor to look up at C so that C has to catch their eye so they can say something. No matter what C says, if it's within earshot of another human being, there's an 85% chance that that person will respond by telling C that C is brilliant, or hilarious, or whatever. Even if it's just like, "Can I have a glass of water?". (Response: "Of course! You are so brilliant and talented that of course you need water!") You think I'm kidding.

I mean, I understand that this is a rare opportunity to interact with a famous person, that while C just goes about C's business, the other person in the scenario now has a famous person story to take with them. Lord, it's not like I haven't been a name dropper. I'm kind of doing it here.

But then a few weeks ago, I happened to see David Caruso. I mean, it's just David Caruso. Not that bigga deal. But holy cow, have the loonies come out of the woodwork. It just brought this whole celebrity thing to a entirely new level.

So I hereby ban the mention of the words David and Caruso from this blog forevermore.

I'm glad that you love him, or hate him, or are friends with him, or have a restraining order against him, or whatevs.

Just don't do it here on my little blog.

Thank you, and have a stalkerific day.

Thursday, May 10, 2007


So maybe it's because I'm BEYOND exhausted. Or maybe it's just because I finally found the perfect job. Maybe a combo of the two.

But there is nothing like the high of walking out of an event that you think you did pretty darn well. The high that comes with knowing that, maybe it was in a completely vapid way, but you just made a few hundred people totally happy for a few hours. And you did it twice on both sides of the country.

Okay, off to bed. But man, what a high.

One down...

Plane touched down at 7:14 a.m. Three hours of sleep total. Meeting with Ambassador of a rather large country in 2 hours. Need shower. Need coffee. Need cranky pant removal.

Phoenix rocks. My hostesses ROCKED. Jill rocks. Sleep will SOSOSO rock.

One event left, then ah....

Tuesday, May 08, 2007

The Opposite of Glamour

...would be traipsing across two airports in heels with those ropey soles (blisters much?), being the heinous person on both planes that has to be asked to turn off their cell, spending every not-in-the-air second frantically problem solving, all the while feeling the worst cold ever buildingbuildingbuilding until its current state, full on fevery chilltown.

Flip side is that the Ritz is always fabulous (my big ol' bowl of French Onion Saga Granitee cannot get here soon enough) and I flew into a dust storm today, which was WAY cool. And I'm wearing a SWEET outfit tomorrow.

Okay, so maybe it's a wash.

Monday, May 07, 2007

The Alternative

So I'm kind of in hell.

Two events in 24 hours. One in Phoenix. So, yeah.

Tomorrow I have a meeting with a building owner, a huge member of the press corps, a T-shirt guy an hour away, have 50 SICK press bags to stuff, bags to pack and OHHOLYFUCK my flight leaves at 1 p.m. (thought it left at 7).

Wednesday, I walk out of my event at 8, catch to a flight to Vegas exactly one hour later, then to an overbooked flight that I hopehopehope I get on, arrive at 7:15 a.m. Thursday, then full throttle into my Thursday event, where I will be wearing very fabulous, very boldly floral cranky pants. At wholesale credit, so not a complete loss.

And yet, I was driving to a potential client meeting today (which I got--yay!), heading down Mass Ave., I looked to my right at the British Embassy. Outside they were setting up tents for the Queen's arrival.

There were three people outside having what appeared to be a logistics conversation (there were clipboards, there was pointing). They were beyond the gates, in the little front parking lot, yet still relatively close (at least close enough that I could see their faces) all in varying states of trying to look calm but holy shitshitshit the Queen the DAMN Queen is coming.

And then I realized that my job: not so very stressful after all.

P.S. Big Bird: Canary? Discuss amongst yourselves.

Friday, May 04, 2007

The goodie bag to end all goodie bags.

I've put together some DAMN fabulous goodie bags in my day. However, I'm not the official derm for Lancome...

Cocktails, munchies, and a sweet treat at the end. Can't beat it.

Me, I'll be in Scottsdale at Momzillas West. Wish me luck (and snag me a goodie bag!).

Wednesday, May 02, 2007

Lovely Momzillas

What a fab event! So thankful for everyone who turned out, for everyone who bought a book, and for all my friends (even my college roomies!) who showed up.

Hostesses were total rock stars, including Norah (what a trooper--she was on her feet the whole time, and due with twins in three weeks!!), and my incredible friend Jill, who just announced that she's preggers herself!

Details after the press gets theirs out...

P.S. A few blogger reviews by some pals here, here and here; one gas-filed non-review here; my first RS Score (!) here (or, at least one that wasn't a leaked celeb sighting. It's like I'm a real live publicity professional. Or something).

P.P.S. There are still a few signed copies left at Politics & Prose if you act quickly!

Photo of Momzillas author Jill Kargman by Abby Greenawalt.

Tuesday, May 01, 2007

Weekend of Red

We headed out on Thursday to San Antonio, Texas. My sister and law and her husband, a doctor with the Army, moved there (or, rather, were summoned there) last June; about a month ago, he was sent to Iraq. Rather unsettling, that. It's weird to IM him and get a message like "Sorry, had to get my uniform. Due to the...incident"--and then have to wait three days to find out about said incident on CNN.

In a report whose name I don't know but that has been named "The Greatest Army Study In The History of All Armies Ever" by my family, it was determined that doctors in certain specialties can lose their skillsets if they're away for too long, so my b-i-l's stay has been shortened from fifteen months to five. Makes the long term prognosis better, but short term it still stinks for my s-i-l and her three year old.

So off we headed, to Fiesta, which is a pretty amazing city-wide celebration (like banks and schools are closed), which stages every spring.

It takes a weekend with my fiery red-headed s-i-l to remember about being fearless, living in the now, and taking crap from no one. Upsides to all. She's amazing.

Unfortunately, I spent a good chunk of the weekend working/fretting over my event tonight. But when I wasn't buried in my laptop counting and analyzing rsvps and doing press outreach, there were German fests (the town has a huge German population, evident in the amazing craftsmanship of their historic homes and the quality of bratwurst), craft fairs, parades, and pageants. An overall great time, even with a boatload of work.

After an afternoon at the King William Fair downtown, I was heading down St. Alamo with mom and s-i-l when another redhead--this one, a medium-sized redheaded male--made eye contact with us and purred, "Hello, ladies." About 10 paces away, my s-i-l looked back and said, "Hey, wasn't that David Caruso? From that CSI show?" I had glanced at his shoes after the greeting, which were fairly crappy. My verdict: definitely not, no famous person would wear those. Unsure, my m-i-l looked back and was positive it was him.

We were heading to a party at a friend of s-i-l's. There were about 15 people there total. And about 10 seconds behind us in walked the redhead with wife and child in tow. Even when he extended his hand and said "Hi, I'm David," I still wasn't sure. He looked more wrinkly and shorter than on camera, but not as wrinkly and heinous as he's made out to be. Definite eye job. Then I spotted his wife's humongous, fabulous, studded Gucci bag--then I was sure it was him (turns out his wife is from S.A.). His kid: COMPLETELY adorable 19-month old infatuated with the fountain in the yard at the party.

We headed home so we could see the kids and I could go back to frettingfrettingfretting, counting rsvps, looking ahead to the next two events, getting press releases out for retainer clients...that's the thig about being in business for yourself: it never stops. One screwup and it could be your last.

My son and nephew are only 6 weeks apart--and it's a nonstop adventure when they're together. From the moment they met (my nephew came from Russia when he was 1), they developed a bond unlike anything I've ever seen. They rarely fight, always share, and love to hug.

It was painful to leave, knowing how much work it is to have a 3-year old, nevermind raising one alone for the time being, knowing how lonely she must be with no family there. But fiery redhead that she is, she plunders on with a smile (or a condescending smirk if it's deserved).

In the airport back in DC, I passed my final redhead of the weekend: Dick Gephardt, driver in tow, looking much more handsome in person, dressed pretty casually.

Now off to 3 events in 10 days!