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Monday, 30 April 2012

Paris Jackson - People magazine: strikingly similar to 'Afghan Girl'







When I first saw the photo of Paris Jackson - the late Michael Jackson's daughter - in the latest issue of US People magazine, I was immediately struck with the obvious resemblance to the National Geographic cover photo by photographer Steve McCurry called 'Afghan Girl'. 


McCurry shot the image while touring a refugee camp on the Afghanistan-Pakistan border; he'd entered a tent that served as a girl's school. The first child he saw was this shy girl with incredible fiery eyes, aged about 12 years old.


The June 1985 edition of the magazine - that shot made the cover - went on to become one of the most recognisable in the magazine's history.


And now, Paris.


Wow - who knew she could look so incredibly beautiful.


We've seen glimpses of this shy beauty since MJ's death (when she was finally able to reveal her face, sans those face coverings Jackson insisted his children wear), and it was only a matter of time before she became a magazine favourite.


In the special edition of People magazine (the sister publication to Australia's Who magazine), Paris is part of the slew of stunners for the Most Beautiful People issue for 2012.


Shot by uber-talented Australian photographer Ben Watts (brother of actress Naomi Watts) it will become an enduring image of the young girl.


Much like the National Geographic shot.


Watch this space/face.

Saturday, 28 April 2012

'Girls' - the new Sex & The City? Foxtel/HBO new TV series



The new US TV show 'Girls' has been touted as the new 'Sex & The City'.


The HBO show (from the network that gave us SATC, 'Six Feet Under', 'True Blood', and groundbreaking TV) has just started screening in the US, and is set to screen in Australia from Monday May 28 from 8.30pm, on Showcase - on Foxtel [double episodes].


Watch the trailers here:








It comes from writer/director/actor Lena Dunham and comedy veterans Judd Apatow ('Bridesmaids') and Jenni Konner, with this new half-hour series focuses on a group of 20-something women in New York and their adventures in 'post-collegiate floundering'.

Two years out of liberal arts school, Hannah (Dunham) believes she has the talent to be a successful writer, and though she has yet to complete her memoir (she has to live it first), her parents cut her off financially without warning. Further complicating things for Hannah is her unrequited passion for eccentric actor Adam (Adam Driver), with whom she occasionally has sex - when he can be bothered to respond to her text messages. It's all shades of uncomfortable to watch.

Over the course of Season 1s ten episodes, the four girls try to figure out what they want from life, from boys, from themselves and each other. The answers arent always clear or easy, but the search is profoundly relatable and infinitely amusing.

Can't wait to watch! Will you tune in?

Here is an interview with Lena Dunham, who stars in, directs, and writes the show:





And here is exec producer Judd Apatow talking about 'Girls', and later Lena (as well as Alex Karpovsky [Tiny Furniture] and exec producer Jenni Konner):


Thursday, 26 April 2012

Jennifer Aniston - Marie Claire, May 2012



As Sydney heads into Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week from next week - and if you're a fashion fiend this will send you into a spin of excitement - be sure you pick up a copy of the May 2012 edition of Marie Claire Australia before it goes off sale soon.


The spread, as seen above, is indicative of the kind of fashion flair you'll see at the five-day, industry-only event. And that's just the guests attending!


I often feel a little inadequate when I front up to Fashion Week - I am no slouch at style, but many of these gorgeous attendees live, breathe, imbibe and ingest fashion - and this beautiful spread in May Marie Claire shows how real Australian women (ah, Michelle Jank... always eclectic; Tulia Wilson: my new fave girl of style) showcase their own personal brand of style.


Oh yes, and there's an interview on Jennifer Aniston, of course, plus another feature story I love called 'Rent My World', where writer Alexandra Carlton road tests the new way to make some mula: rent out your wares (think: vacuum cleaner, handbag, car, apartment, bike... even a chair) for quick cash.


Buy a copy of Australian Marie Claire May 2012 edition today.


For more, see: http://au.lifestyle.yahoo.com/marie-claire/

Wednesday, 25 April 2012

Your Vagina: Too Dark?


A few days ago, a friend (thanks, Rina!) posted a link from the site Jezebel and I HAD to read it:

"Your Vagina Isn’t Just Too Big, Too Floppy, and Too Hairy - It’s Also Too Brown".


I almost choked on my morning coffee.


And then, I couldn't wait to read the whole thing.


The fabulously funny intro:


"Good news, ladies! Society has discovered another new thing that's wrong with you, which means another opportunity for you to make yourself more attractive for your man. Score! Turns out, the color of your vagina is gross and everyone hates it. So bleach that motherfucker. Bleach it right now!"

The Indian TV ad that inspired the Jezebel piece is a corker (and obviously, unintentionally funny).


Watch: 


And the YouTube note accompanying the Clean and Dry Intimate Wash ad, equally amusing:


"Designed to address the problems women face in their private parts, Clean and Dry Intimate Wash offers protection, fairness and freshness. To be used while showering, its special pH-balanced formula cleans and protects the affected area, and even makes the skin fairer. Life for women will now be fresher, cleaner, fairer!"


I hesitated for days to blog about this; would it be deemed to crass, too out there, too... vagina-ry for my readers?


Well, I couldn't contain the Catholic girl inside me anymore... it's just too good, too controversial a topic to not write about.


The gist of the article is that, hello... we now have something else to be concerned about, another thing to add to our list of beauty upkeep: the colour of our vaginas.


The absurd notion in the ad is that, 1) you can actually change the colour of your vagina. And 2) you will be far more desirable if your vagina is... er, lighter.


What do you think of this [absurd] hilarity?

Keith Urban and Nicole Kidman - "It's my wife and then my daughters"

Some weeks ago I read the April issue of the Australian Women's Weekly and as I scanned the issue for what I wanted to read first, I came across the profile on Keith Urban. The juggernaut for 'The Voice' hadn't yet taken off, but I was more curious than usual about Mr Kidman - the ads were playing for what seemed like months, and I was warming more and more to 'Country Keef'. I did not expect to be more and more enamoured with the man, before I'd even finished the piece.

There were several quotes I loved: "I always believed in The One and I was tired of writing about it, but not ever experiencing it." And this one: "I still can't quite believe I got to marry her."

But this one in particular struck me: "We're very, very tight as a family unit and the children are our life, but I know the order of my love," he says. "It's my wife and then my daughters. I just think it's really important for the kids."

For weeks, I thought about this. And immediately I thought, this deserve a blog post.

All the while, in the back of my mind, I thought: 'I am guilty of this!' Sometimes, often even... my kids come first. Yep, I am one of 'those' women who, post-kids, devotes far more time to my children than my relationship.

The reality is: I don't have babysitters on tap, we don't pay strangers to babysit, and so the likelihood for 'date night' and spending quality time with the husband is greatly diminished. But then it occurred to me: we don't have to go out to show our children we know we come first, that our partnership is important. We can - and do - do it in simple ways.

Like hugging and kissing in front of the kids (and not stopping because they feel threatened). Like insisting the kids don't interrupt a conversation I am having with my husband (how many times have I said in exasperation: "God, I can't even have a conversation with my husband anymore!").

Like keeping our rule in the home that our kids are in bed by a certain [early] time, so we can just hang together, alone.

Oh, and this one, which my husband has been insistent on since day one: no kids in our bed. Ever. Don't even jump on our bed. It's sacred and it's ours and it's just for us. No exceptions. Oh wow, we are better at this than I thought!

But I won't lie: sometimes that skin to skin contact I have with my freshly washed poppets is all I need to nourish my need for human contact for the day.

My kids - especially my son, oh he has no limits - kiss me square on the mouth, and I love it. At day's end, sometimes I feel I have had my quota of 'I feel loved today'.

But, I know my husband's love is altogether different. And it needs daily nurturing. Because, yes... I do dread every couple's nightmare: to 'wake up one day, kids are grown up, look across the table... and you don't know your partner anymore.'

I know it will take a lot more than the above to keep love alive as the kids grow up. But actively taking steps will go some way in ensuring: my partner in life feels loved, and my children also feel loved. They are also a top priority... it's just... a different kind of love.

What do you do to keep the love alive? Do you think your relationship should come first? Or are your kids top of the list?

Please, share your thoughts, and explain what works for you. Oh, and have a read of this:

According to David Code, author of 'To Raise Happy Kids, Put Your Marriage First': "Today's number one myth about parenting is that the more attention we give our kids, the better they'll turn out. But we parents have gone too far: our over-focus on our children is doing them more harm than good," said Code, a family therapist and writer for the Wall Street Journal. "Families centred on children create anxious, exhausted parents and demanding, entitled children. We parents today are too quick to sacrifice our lives and our marriages for our kids. Most of us have created child-centred families, where our children hold priority over our time, energy and attention.

"But as we break our backs for our kids, our marriage and self-fulfilment go out the window while our kids become more demanding and dissatisfied," he added. Code believes today's children are troubled because they receive too much attention. "That's why children seem to have many more problems nowadays than we did, or our parents did," he said. "By killing ourselves to provide a perfect, trauma-free childhood for our children, we're wasting our energy. The greatest gift you can give your children is to have a fulfilling marriage yourself."

So: what do you think?

Tuesday, 24 April 2012

Giuliana and Bill Rancic - having a baby!


In the best celeb news in eons, E!’s Giuliana Rancic has confirmed she and husband Bill are expecting their first child. 

Mini Rancic is due later this US summer via a gestational surrogate, which essentially means that while Giuliana is not carrying the baby, the baby will be the Rancics' genetic child.

Giuliana says: "We are so thrilled that our prayers have been answered."


Adds Bill, "We are absolutely ecstatic to be sharing this with everyone who has been following our journey."


Today's news follows many emotionally trying months for the couple, which included Giuliana being diagnosed with breast cancer and undergoing a successful double mastectomy. 


You can read more here: http://josiesjuice.blogspot.com.au/2011/10/giuliana-rancic-speaks-about-her-breast.html


And here: http://josiesjuice.blogspot.com.au/2011/12/giuliana-rancic-to-undergo-double_06.html


And the Josie's Juice interview I did with Bill Rancic (just before the cancer diagnosis) here: http://josiesjuice.blogspot.com.au/2011/08/interview-bill-rancic-giuliana-bill.html


Three weeks ago, the couple appeared on US television and Giuliana gave an optimistic prognosis. "I'm good," she said, adding she didn't need chemotherapy. "You do what the doctors tell you to do and it's going to be OK." 


And in additional lovely news, Bill also announced they are planning to renew their vows this summer, "and really take life on and look at it in a new light."


In addition to Giuliana's gigs on E! News and Fashion Police, the fifth season of Giuliana and Bill is scheduled to premiere in Australia on Monday, June 25th at 8:30pm AEST on Style, on Foxtel.


Plus, the couple also have a brand new restaurant in Chicago called RPM Italian to run. 


As Bill said last December, "2012 is going to be our year."

"We received an incredible amount of love and prayers from viewers around the world," says Giuliana, "and we want to take this opportunity to thank each and every one of them for their love."
Watch this clip from this morning's US edition of the Today show, elaborating on the details behind the pregnancy. It is just wonderful:

Crystal Renn in Schön Magazine, May 2012


















































































































































































































Shotput, archery, fencing, weights, javelin... [ever-shrinking] model Crystal Renn shows us how all the Olympic sports are done: with red lipstick, a sleek pony, killer heels, and loads of jewellery strewn across the cranium.


In the May 2012 edition of German Schön magazine, Crystal [how about that fantastically out there cover] aims to show the international Olympic teams an alternate way to win medals.


Shot by the inimitable Ellen von Unwerth, it's pure gold.


For more, see: http://schonmagazine.com/2012/04/schon-17-we-are-the-champions/

Monday, 23 April 2012

Guilty TV pleasures - what are yours?

So, my friend and I were chatting the other night about TV shows we secretly love.


You know, the shows you watch alone, when the partner goes to bed. Or when you kick off your shoes and don the trackies after a day at work; or when you have a 'sick' day.


Invariably, it involves a reality show of some sort [and is likely to be set in Jersey. Or Essex].


But it always fits this criteria: you never actually admit to watching it. Because you're, like, too intellectual for that.


Now, I am a TV aficionado. A little too obsessed, perhaps.


Let me explain [justify] why.


My twins are fed, bathed, and in bed by 7.30... 7.45pm tops.


My husband gets up early for work and is pushing out some serious zzz's by, oh, 9.30. Sometimes 8.30pm


Which leaves me to stay up and write my freelance stories - and I'll do it in front of the telly BECAUSE I WANT TO! 


And so, my Foxtel IQ is/has been filled with such gems as... well, let me show you some clips:























And now... the lowest of my bad TV dregs:





Which shows are your guilty pleasures? C'mon... fess up!

Mahalia Barnes favourite to win 'The Voice' Australia




As the TV show of the year, 'The Voice, heats up - and keeps garnering more attention, column inches, ratings, and a hard-to-ignore, deafening buzz - this just in: the prediction (based on betting odds) on the winner of 'The Voice'.

According to betting site tomwaterhouse.com Mahalia Barnes is $7 favourite to win 'The Voice.'

Yes, the young woman - the daughter of Australian rock legend Jimmy Barnes - is the $7 favourite to win The Voice with online bookmaker tomwaterhouse.com.

And if you're a fan of 'Dancing with the Stars', the betting market is the tightest in the 12 seasons of the television show, with no fewer than four celebrities trading at $4 joint favourites.

“When it comes to music, pedigrees don’t come any better than that of Mahalia Barnes – a daughter of Jimmy Barnes, half-sister of David Campbell and niece of Johnny Diesel,” said Tom Waterhouse, Managing Director of tomwaterhouse.com.

“Vogue Williams is odds on to follow Erin McNaught out of Dancing with the Stars next Sunday but the race for the glitterball has never been closer with four equal market leaders after two rounds.”

And so, here is the full list of the odds for the winner of 'The Voice' according to tomwaterhouse.com:

'The Voice' winner:

$7 Mahalia Barnes
$9 Karise Eden
$11 Rachael Leahcar
$13 Darren Percival
$17 Carmen Smith, Casey Withoos
$21 Lakyn Heperi, Paula Parore
$26 Sarah De Bono, Adam Martin
$34 Yshrael Pascual, Kelsie Rimmer, Chris Sebastian $41 Laura Bunting, Glenn Cunningham, Sarah Lloyde, Cam Tapp $51 Emma Louise Birdsall, Danni Da Ros, Taga Paa $67 Ben Bennett, Abbie Cardwell, Brett Clarke, Jimmy Cupples, Michael Duchesne, Ben Hazlewood, Adam Hoek, Peta Jeffress $81 Matt Hetherington, Mali Koa-Hood $101 Yianna Stavrous $1.90 Any other person

Prediction for 'The Voice' team winner:
$3 Team Joel, Team Seal
$4 Team Keith
$4.25 Team Delta

And the prediction for the winner 'Dancing With The Stars,' according to tomwaterhouse.com:

$4 Zoe Cramond, Kerri-Anne Kennerley, Johnny Ruffo, Danielle Spencer
$15 Caine Eckstein
$17 Brendan Fevola, Shannon Noll
$26 Jessica Watson
$41 Brian Mannix
$101 Vogue Williams

Second elimination
$1.80 Vogue Williams
$4.50 Brian Mannix
$7 Jessica Watson
$11 Brendan Fevola, Shannon Noll
$13 Caine Eckstein
$41 Johnny Ruffo
$51 Kerri-Anne Kennerley
$67 Zoe Cramond, Danielle Spencer


Sunday 29 April top scorer
$3.25 Zoe Cramond, Danielle Spencer
$3.75 Kerri-Anne Kennerley
$9 Johnny Ruffo
$10 Brendan Fevola
$17 Caine Eckstein
$34 Brian Mannix, Vogue Williams
$41 Shannon Noll
$51 Jessica Watson



tomwaterhouse.com is the racing and sports betting website of Australia's biggest bookmaker - those who know their racing families will know that Tom Waterhouse is a fourth generation bookmaker and a member of the country's most famous racing family.

So: where does your fave figure in the list above? Agree with the odds? What's your prediction?

Here are some performances from 'The Voice', including Mahalia's:


And Darren Percival:


And Carmen Smith:


And... my fave, Paula Parore:


And my husband's fave Karise Eden (oh yes, the man who has an aversion to 'reality shows' of any kind is [reluctantly] hooked):



Friday, 20 April 2012

Keith Urban. The Voice. The Crush. The Fragrance

Let's talk about Keith Urban.

You know where I'm going: that simmering crush you had on him... now, thanks to 'The Voice'... well, it's kinda turned into a full-blown, googly-eyed admiration.

Okay, so maybe you're not that enamoured, but at the very least you've gotten to know Nicole Kidman's husband better - and, according to an interview with Keith in the April 2012 edition of The Australian Women's Weekly "Nicole convinced him to do it, believing it would not only be an excellent showcase of his musical talent, but also a chance for Australia to properly get to know the man she fell in love with."

That, we have. 

Behold, some gratuitous pics of Keith just for you...




Oh, and if you want to smell like Keith would, you're in luck!

He has recently released his first ever fragrance, called Phoneix By Keith Urban.

The fragrance is light and subtle, but is unmistakably masculine, and it's perfect for daytime or night. 

Urban was instrumental in the creation of Phoenix, which is a modern twist on a classic aftershave - rich, leathery, sexy and masculine, and based it on the range of scents he wears.

“We looked at all of the different colognes I actually wear and started to see certain notes that were present in all of them. From there we set about defining what became Phoenix. What I was looking for was a good balance of sensual, spiritual and masculinity, and I think that’s what we’ve achieved”.

With top notes of blackberries, cognac and plum the scent then develops into middle notes of rich dark chocolate and crisp fir balsam and finally to base notes of warm cashmere wood.

Basically, it smells damn delicious on your man. [Close your eyes and imagine Keith, if that does it for you...].

Phoenix by Keith Urban is available in David Jones, Kmart and Priceline, with the Phoenix Classic Set, 30ml Cologne Spray & Deodorant at a teeny $19.95.

And to see what everyone is going on about, here is Keith's promo vid for 'The Voice':



And here are clips from Keith's hits:





So... yes? Is it Keith you are mad about on 'The Voice'?

Thursday, 19 April 2012

Shane Warne and Liz Hurley - their first interview together: Woman's Day





She calls him the “Big Blond” while his nickname for her is “Luna”

Tomorrow the spotlight will firmly be on Shane Warne and Elizabeth Hurley and their highly anticipated first interview for any magazine.

That scoop went to Australia’s highest selling weekly women’s magazine, Woman’s Day.

“It doesn’t get much bigger than this for Australian magazines,” Woman’s Day editor Fiona Connolly said.  “Shane and Elizabeth are one of the world’s most intriguing couples. The story of their romance, engagement and blended family has remained untold - until now.”

Hitting newsstands in a special issue of Woman’s Day out this Friday, Elizabeth and Shane reveal their nicknames for each other: she calls him the “Big Blond” while his nickname for her is “Luna” – after the Sydney's Luna Park.

“Elizabeth calls me a lot more than just the Big Blond – she has dozens of names for me, all of them too embarrassing to share,” Shane tells Woman’s Day.

“I have a handful for her, too, but I usually call her Luna as there was a terrible paparazzi picture of her once looming in to kiss me, which reminded me of the massive mouth at the entrance of Luna Park.”

Fiona adds: “You’ve seen Shane Warne wearing many hats from cricket hero to Aussie larrikin but this is a side of him you could never have imagined.  Woman’s Day readers will be surprised by how honest the couple are about everything from his colourful romantic past, their exes, their kids, how she’s changed him and even plastic surgery.”

“I think we just ‘get’ each other and it feels like we have known one another for ever,’ Shane tells the magazine.

“I understand why Elizabeth and I getting together initially seemed strange to some people and why it created a lot of interest. We are from different worlds, but funnily enough they are very much the same, too," says Shane.

Adds the actress and swimwear designer: “I am extremely happy when I’m with Shane. We are very similar in many ways.

“Despite differences in our backgrounds and careers, we both come from very secure, loving homes and to me that says a lot.”

In the interview, Shane is keen to dispel what he describes as “one of the biggest misconceptions about me”, saying: “I don’t sit in front of the TV and drink 20 cans of beer every night.”

He also reveals the truth about those surgery rumours, telling Woman’s Day: “I can 100 percent tell you that I have not gone under the surgeon’s knife or had a facelift.”

The couple, who first met two years ago and announced their engagement last October, reveal they are likely to marry next year and that celebrations will most probably be held in both countries. “We are very mindful of the fact that our loved ones live at opposite ends of the world,” says Shane, whose three children Brooke, 14, Jackson, 12, and Summer, ten, live with his ex-wife in Melbourne.

And Elizabeth's ten-year-old son Damian is delighted to have “three new playmates on tap”.

“Damian adores them all and rotates round sleeping in all of their bedrooms when we’re in Australia,” she tells Woman’s Day.

The exclusive Woman’s Day photoshoot took place at a family holiday in Sri Lanka, and Shane’s children will be spending part of the summer at Elizabeth’s Gloucestershire farm, where Shane, 42, is now based.

Elizabeth, 46, admits that she found it a “big change going overnight from one child to four” but says she is relishing her role as a stepmother-to-be. “I love it when we’re all together,” she tells Woman’s Day, revealing that her nickname is M2 (“Mummy Two”). “I just try to be the best stepmum that I can.”

TO SEE THE FULL ARTICLE IN WOMAN’S DAY MAGAZINE, BUY THE EDITION, OUT FRIDAY APRIL 20.

Wednesday, 18 April 2012

Ellen's Dance Dares

Ah, I love Ellen. She can make a simple prank so hilarious.


This one started with a video made by a staffer:






A comp was set up and then the first round of submissions came in:





And more:





And still more:





And even more (I never get sick of these):





Aaaand more:






And then some celebs got involved; Emma Stone (she was so good):





And more; Zac Efron and Taylor Swift:






And then a finalist was chosen:





Expect another post when the next batch are in, and the next finalist is chosen. So much fun to watch... appeals to the inner prankster in most of us!

Celebrity Apprentice Australia - series two





Celebrity Apprentice Australia series two is premiering tonight, Wednesday April 18 at 8pm.


A new batch of 12 high-profile, ultra-competitive celebrities are determined to steal the limelight for themselves... oh, it's also all for charity, right?


After last year’s winner Julia Morris made her mark on telly and straight into the hearts of the public with hilarious brand of humour, this year's group have a hard task ahead to impress (gawd I love watching this stuff!).


And this year's line up is:


- international superstar David Hasselhoff
- entertainment royalty Patti Newton
- TV star Ian ‘Dicko’ Dickson
- controversial former AFL player Jason Akermanis
- model judge Charlotte Dawson
- glamour sportswoman Lauryn Eagle
- TV presenter Ben Dark
- Bollywood actress Tania Zaetta
- celebrity cook Marion Grasby
- comic Vince Sorrenti
- reality TV star Nathan Jolliffe
- and, comedienne Fiona O’Loughlin


Here is the promo trailer:





Working in teams to raise money [while acutely aware their egos and pride are at stake] to raise as much money as possible for their favourite charity. All will be trying their hardest to avoid hearing the dreaded words ‘You’re Fired’ from their new boss Mark Bouris.


The winner will ultimately take the much-wanted gift of $100,000 to give to their chosen charity.


Let's talk about Mark Bouris. You know what I am talking about here ladies.


Okay, so the official bio says: "one of the country’s most successful high-profile businessmen and Executive Chairman/co-founder of wealth management company Yellow Brick Road".


But once again, it's a tad distracting watching Mark in action: power is so damn attractive.


The host is again joined by his two advisors to be his eyes and ears during challenges: magazine supremo Deborah Thomas is back, and new advisor, entrepreneur Dane Bouris (Mark's son).


Celebrity Apprentice Series Two will now include the challenge as well as the boardroom – where the winning team’s project manager is awarded the money for charity, and someone from the losing team is fired - all in one episode.


Challenges this year include: creating a family funfair, a dog pampering day and taking charge of the turnaround service of a passenger cruise liner.


As they have done in the past, they've all bragged about their contact books of celeb mates which they need to turn into big charity donations. It's so much fun watching them try, fail, argue, yell, and angle for air time and controversial sound bites.


Let the games begin.


Will you be watching?


PS: who do you think will be booted off tonight?