As a young broadcaster in entertainment it was my literal dream to some day cover the Oscars.
Thank you, E!, for making my dreams come true year after year.
I am forever grateful to get invited to this dance because of you.
OSCARS GLAM: NO SCANDAL HERE
Here's something you may not know about me. If I wasn't a tv host or running a fashion and lifestyle blog, I honestly could spend all day every day studying home design. It's so interesting to me! I truly appreciate every aspect of home decor and certainly know what I'm attracted to aesthetically, but having the time to create the perfect space within my home is another story. It's a full time job and time is something I don't have enough of, let's be honest.
So, here's the story. I already had a comfortable room where the boys and I spend most of our time as a family. But I really wanted to create an elevated, glamorous, and sophisticated space that felt more adult in my home.
The formal living room space called for many changes: It needed to make a strong impression for my guests as a “grown-up entertaining space”, but I still wanted it laid-back enough for the boys and my girl (aka my dog), Scarlett. I knew I needed to bring in the big guns to breathe life into this underused space so I called on the help of Laurel & Wolf.
This room is the first space you see when you walk in the front door, and it always bothered me that it was unfinished. The room gets so much gorgeous light, but it was just unused space—no energy, no soul. It was begging to come to life.
I started with lucite waterfall coffee table, a champagne-colored rug, a vintage credenza, an heirloom piano, and a daybed. I purchased the rug earlier in the year and absolutely loved the lush, champagne color and texture of it. It was a core piece that inspired the rest of the design. The vintage credenza was already a feature and the heirloom piano was passed down from my grandmother.
I think my personal style is warm and inviting, but also erring on the minimal side. I despise clutter or too much of anything—it makes me feel heavy. I don't over accessorize when I get dressed, and I certainly don't want too many knickknacks in my home. Less is more. Kimberly really understood this and welcomed my cues and direction. As an celebrated expert, she then took the reins and went to work!
The team at Laurel & Wolf also knew to make good use of the space in this room. My designer Kimberly helped me figure out a more efficient plan for the furniture and created a very inviting space. I wanted a more intimate arrangement of furniture that was conducive to entertaining. I also wanted to mute the color scheme quite a bit and get away from the masculine feel. I will say I’m no shrining violet and had strong opinions about what I wanted. She really listened to my design instinct which made for a very trusting collaboration.
I’ve tried to work on the house myself in the past, and it can be so overwhelming trying to take on a job like this alone. Kimberly endlessly offered so many alternative options from fabrics to wallpaper, to key furniture pieces. It was like Christmas every time I opened my inbox. She was exceptional at listening to my strong opinions on certain decisions and ultimately wanted me to be happy.
I have to say I am ecstatic with how it all turned out! The fact this service is affordable and so extremely user friendly is such a win. I honestly can’t say enough good things about the company. If you’d like to try it, please use the CATTWALK for a discounted experience. I’m confident you’ll have a superb design experience like me.
PHOTOS BY DUSTIN WALKER/LAUREL & WOLF
Mexico keeps calling to me and I keep answering the call.
This time I was able to return to a brand new luxe resort and bring my besties with me. Aren’t girls trips just absolutely necessary for the soul? I think so. We sipped tons of tequila, laughed like we were 16, and soaked up the sun for the entire duration - while lathering in sunscreen, natch.
As promised, below are some fun snaps captured during our stay and some links to shop our looks. And, as promised if you saw my Facebook Live from Cabo, the beauty products featured for our “night-time-going-out” make up look are clickable as well.
Muchas Gracias mis amores,
Together Changing the World
I can't tell you how honored I am to have written the introduction for my mother's third book. You can read it in full here below. My hope is that you'll be inspired to hear more stories like this when you read Women Like Us cover to cover. So proud of your efforts, Mama. Congratulations!
I was born in 1974 in a small town in southern Indiana, population about 10,000. All ‘folks’ were white, the majority of them Christian, and although I would grow to love this little slice of the world and call it home, there is a portion of Martinsville’s history I’m not particularly proud of. To this day, it’s still trying to shed its racist reputation.
As I was growing up I heard stories about KKK rallies in the woods, that the Grand Dragon himself called our community home, and that violence erupted because of this racism. There was a horrific tale about a black woman who came to town selling encyclopedias door to door in the late ’60s who was stabbed to death because of the color of her skin. These truths would haunt me as a child. I was instinctively saddened by the thought of what lurked ‘yonder.’ Lucky for me, my parents were loving, inclusive people who, by example, taught me to love and accept my human brothers and sisters regardless of our differences.
Beyond race, though, my mother (like my late grandmother Freda) is a feminist. I was not only raised to respect other cultures and ideas, but women in my family were always cherished, and valued, and lifted up like any of our male counterparts.
Freda, my mom’s mom, was what we would call today a Girl Boss. And yes, she was even a little bossy. She was sassy and opinionated and incredibly driven. She founded the first-ever female- owned real estate company in the state. She and my grandfather then raised three daughters of their own, and you can imagine that this was a house filled with girls with big dreams and big ideas.
These ideals were passed on generation to generation, and although my life began in a small town—literally next door to the one John Mellencamp sang about—I never imagined my journey would encompass the big wide world in the way that it has. I couldn’t see it as a little girl. I couldn’t predict it. But I think I always dreamt about it subconsciously.
I knew I would get “out,” that there was more. I didn’t know what was in store but there was definitely an itch as I grew older to discover what was outside the confines of Indiana life.
After graduating with a journalism degree from Indiana University, and securing my first general-assignment reporting job at a local TV station, I began feeling very unsettled. No one in my entire family or extended family at this point had ever just left ...just because. But in my heart and in my soul, I knew my life’s purpose would extend beyond the rolling hills, beautiful foliage and Hoosier hospitality my home had to offer.
Cut to 20 years later and here I am in Los Angeles, now with my own family, and boy has the view changed! I’ve worked 10 years now for the E! network and have interviewed Johnny Depp, Meryl Streep, Leonardo DiCaprio, Julia Roberts, and Oprah. Oh, and even a first lady: Michelle Obama. It has been hard work, day in and day out, but it has also been ridiculously glamorous with red carpets, designer gowns, international travels covering the weddings of royals, French film festivals, and Olympic games. I have stamped my passport dozens of times over the years and have, as a result, discovered one of my absolute obsessions: traveling. I am completely infatuated by other cultures, their histories, their architecture, their customs, and their cuisine.
All the while I was raising my two sons and traveling the globe for my job, my mom had been steadily working on developing her foundation, Women Like Us. A cornerstone of her organization has been international travel. She would arrange for large groups of people to travel to an area in need of making change at some level, while also experiencing the richness of these places themselves.
In the summer of 2014, I would go to Kenya for the first time. Mom had planned for herself and a dozen other women to travel to a number of places to do work for the many causes her foundation supports there. At the time, it sounded thrilling, but like so many of us, I didn’t have a clue how I was going to leave my kids for nearly two weeks, take time off work, and on top of that my dad had been diagnosed with stage four lung cancer. I was resisting going, but thankfully, my mother knows me well. She said, “Get on the plane.” And so, I did.
One foot on the ground in Nairobi and I knew I was a long, long way from Martinsville, Indiana. The political unrest in the country at the time was at an all-time high. There were a number of soldiers pacing through the airport with machine guns, and similar armed men greeted us at our first stop, our hotel. Oddly, I wasn’t afraid. I was calm and eager to let this adventure unfold as it was intended. After all, this experience was in line with what I had always believed was my destiny in many ways.
In the days to come, I would be changed forever—so much so, it’s sometimes hard to find the words.
I would meet Mama Margaret who heads the Tenderfeet School in Kibera, one of the poorest and most dangerous places in Kenya and the largest urban slum in all of Africa. This light, this force of a woman, shared her selfless stories of teaching to dozens of orphans who otherwise wouldn’t have an education at all. Many of them were ill, living with HIV. She not only runs a school for them but takes many of them home and nurtures them around the clock. She was the first angel I would meet.
Then, there were the faces from the Nancy Noël Preschool. This is a school Women Like Us had supported for many years, but it was our first time visiting. I lost my breath, it was so tragic upon first glance. The need, the hunger for human touch. There were hundreds of hungry children who until our visit had never used a paint brush, had never blown through a recorder to make music, had never had their own backpack. Giving to these precious little people would be one of the most rewarding experiences of my life.
In the days to come on Rusinga Island I would meet Mary and her two sons, all three of them diagnosed with HIV. We were filming our documentary and she was brave enough
to let us and our cameras into her home. There were mud floors and mosquito nets over pieces of foam on the floor that served as their beds. Mary, somewhat hesitantly and certainly embarrassed, would describe her desperation to earn money to care for her kids. Work was hard to come by and she confessed to selling her body for money, as it was the only way to make ends meet. Her kids needed medication and food and shelter, and after her husband died from AIDS, like so many do, this was her life. I remember hugging them all tightly. I wanted to fix it. Right then and there. I felt hollow and helpless but was grateful to have collided with them on this big planet of ours. I’m rarely speechless, but after that visit I remember feeling silenced.
Less than 24 hours after that I would interview the former first lady of Kenya, as if some miracle dropped out of the sky. She and her husband ascended on the lodge where we were staying, and while our group was gathered around a table in a common area, she walked by and her presence
was electric! We convinced her to have a glass of wine with us when unbeknownst to us we would learn she was a political powerhouse in Kenya who had dedicated her life to empowering young girls in education and other areas. She agreed to be interviewed by me for our documentary. Her story is incredibly riveting but also aspirational. Her life’s work: to make change for girls and future generations to come.
I had heard the phrase FGM in the news before, and I knew vaguely what it meant, but like so many of us who hear about tragic scenarios over and over again, sometimes we become immune to the true devastation taking place. The Olmalaika Home is a kind of refuge for victims of female genital mutilation. This is where I would meet Jackie and Faith and so many other beautiful, resilient, smart, young women who wanted more for their lives. They often left their families to
live in this safe, secure haven after being brutally victimized physically, mentally, and emotionally. Kim DeWitt founded this home to give hope to these girls when the culture around them is telling them that their bodies aren’t their bodies, their worth is equal to that of a cow, their future isn’t their own.
Faith wants to be a doctor. Jackie wants to find her own voice. Walking away from this place, unlike many other places I had encountered thus far, I felt hopeful. Because of one woman, Kim, and her courage to do something, I started to see the possibilities of giving the downtrodden a better life.
In bed at night, I wept...more than once. These people had gotten into my bones and I felt this overwhelming responsibility to combat the atrocities engulfing their lives. To heal them, to restore them, to protect them.
I wanted to give to them because they had given to me. The light....
What I know is that there is poverty everywhere. There is need everywhere, of some form, within a mile of each of our homes. In Martinsville, in Los Angeles, in Africa.
I was touched that my mom asked me to contribute to her book because I am such a believer in our connectedness as humans.
I feel strongly that our collective purpose is to work together, regardless of race or origin. That it is our human right—our right as women—to find peace, good health, and education.
I hope you’ll read the pages of this book and be inspired.
Perhaps you, too, have the itch but need the nudge like my mom gave me. Go ahead, “get on the plane,” literally or metaphorically. You won’t regret it.
Proceeds from the book go to funding women-led initiatives for gender equality and social justice in the areas of sex trafficking, homelessness and education through the Women Like Us Foundation.
When one of your all-time favorite magazines (and one of the world’s leading publications) delights in your story of co-parenting, it’s pretty flattering. So I was beyond honored to share some of my tips of surviving and thriving the holidays when divorced with kids with my friends at Vogue. As always, my hope is that sharing my experiences might inspire others to embrace their own unconventional families with a progressive, loving mindset! XX
We make choices jointly regarding what’s best for the kids.
Kyle and I decided early on that we would co-parent, and this time of the year has been easier to navigate as a result. Thanksgiving tends to change from year to year based on extended family and travel schedules, but the one holiday that has always meant the most to me and remained a constant is Christmas. It was important to us that the kids wake up in the same place every year on December 25. We wanted to protect the bedtime rituals, their Santa visit, the surprise in their eyes, and the chaos of unwrapping. It is a sacred time to cherish.
We establish who is doing what where early.
Kyle was supportive of having Christmas at my house from the beginning, and I am grateful for his selflessness. The boys do so much back and forth from my home to their dad’s that we already feel a little guilty. Our work lives are so busy that we don’t have a set schedule for this, so having a concrete tradition when it comes to Christmas is really nice. Not only do our sons wake up in the same home year after year to the same warm traditions, but Kyle and his wife, Sarah, rise incredibly early and drive over to my house to watch the magic unfold. It is rare and truly meaningful.
We don’t freak out if we double up on gifts.
I wish I could say that I was ridiculously organized and had a complete handle on the gifting, but typically about halfway through December, Kyle and I start to realize that we’ve overlapped on a few presents and gotten the kids some of the same things. It’s almost unavoidable. But eventually we start sharing what’s been marked off whose list, and it works itself out in the end. And if one of our sons really, really loves that vintage Spider-Man poster we both got him, why wouldn’t he want one at each house? It’s not the end of the world. There are also years when we team up and go in on the big gifts together. That’s fun, too.
When new significant others entered the picture, we made sure it was respectful from the start.
Kyle married Sarah a few years after we divorced, and I married Rhys in 2011. When I describe our co-parenting, I’m really describing the way all four of us come together as a unit. Sarah knew the playing field from the get-go and was enthusiastically supportive of our modern-day family. The same goes for Rhys, and he and Kyle became fast friends.
Everyone knows his or her role.
Our significant others never tried to be the boys’ stand-in parents. Rhys never tried to be their “dad”; he knew they had one already who was actively involved in their day-to-day lives.
We focus on the long-term benefits.
The holidays can be really hard on divided families after divorce, because no matter what, sharing kids means you see less of them. If it’s your former spouse’s turn to host the kids and you won’t be there, it can be painful, but try to focus on the end goal. Obviously, there are specific circumstances, but hopefully, in the long run, the kids are benefiting greatly by having a bond with both parents, and that’s what is important. We always try to keep this in mind.
January. Ahhhhh the month to clean it up, cut it out, and start fresh!
I hate the word resolutions but I do believe in setting goals. If you’re like me, you may have slacked big time during the holidays in the health and wellness department. If so, give yourself a break, dust your shoulders off, and look at this month as a true opportunity to return to the super strong, sexy, lovable YOU!
If you follow me on snapchat and insta, you know that 2017 is the RETURN of the RUN for me. I had a few spinning commitments this first week, so my running was a wee slow-go, but I am gradually getting back to my favorite solitary exercise. Me against who? Myself. There’s something about running alone outdoors on the pavement that forces me to be accountable to my time, distance, and goals of the day. Do you feel that way when you run?
If you want to join me in January, here are my FITNESS GOALS:
2 to 3 times a week, between 2 to 4 miles each time. I log my miles on Map My Run app.
At least once a week.
Even after just this first week of getting back into the swing of things, I feel SO much better. More energy, less crashes. Simply MOVING makes such a difference in our overall wellness.
From a diet standpoint, I’ve cut waaaaay back on alcohol. (My dry January goal went out the window after a week, but I’m adhering to no drinking during the week at least.) I’m also experimenting with a myriad of supplements. I’ve incorporated spirulina, fish oils, turmeric, cayenne pepper, and probiotics into my daily vitamin regime. Most are for immunity boosts, heart health, digestive health and basically aiding overall function. I’ll let you know if I feel a difference after I’ve been on the plan for a while.
Lastly, don’t forget your mental health. I just picked up a book called The Slight Edge that I had heard about all over social media. Here’s a nugget to help inspire you this month:
Alright. Let’s get on with it. HUT HUT!
I love to experiment making prohibition style concoctions all year long, but for the holidays, here’s our favorite. Remember the garnish and glasses should be festive as well. This will make the drink feel like a merry experience!
WHAT TO DO
- In large pitcher, combine limeade and water until well blende
- Stir in ALTOS tequila, pomegranate juice, and triple sec.
- Cut each lime crosswise into 1/4-inch-thick wheels; cut a slit in each wheel, from center to edge.
- To serve, place ice cubes and a few pomegranate seeds in each glass; place a lime wheel on rim.
There’s just something about the first day of a month. There’s something about November that feels fresh, new, exciting. And yes, you probably noticed, theCATTWALK looks a little different.
I’m stepping into today feeling so grateful. I love this blog because it’s a creative extension of myself and celebrates what fuels me: fashion, beauty, mind and body awareness, beautiful things. It’s in a way a documentation of the moments in between in my life, captured and cemented here in digital land. In reflecting, I so appreciate my full life and the ability to share with you. Whether it’s a sick pair of boots you decide to spoil yourself with or a nudge to put your running shoes on or a cattfirmation that lifts your spirits on those darker days when we want to stay in bed with the covers over our head. I hope you come often and leave taking something with you.
I had been eyeing this intricate, unique necklace for some time and finally pulled the trigger and purchased it. It arrived in the mail just this week. It’s design so lovely, but it’s meaning even better. The name of the necklace by FOUNDRAE is WHOLENESS and the medallion’s design encourages us to seek unity within through growth and balance. The snake serves as a talisman of rejuvenation.
So here’s to WHOLENESS, GROWTH, and REJUVENATION in NOVEMBER. Let’s do it. Hut Hut and Lots of Love.
Besides hosting E! News each day and curating content for #theCATTWALK and my many social media platforms, one of my favorite gigs is hosting Simply Stylist Fashion and Beauty Conference. To be facilitating informative and inspirational conversations with the best of the best in their respective industries is personally fulfilling, but also completely gratifying because I know how meaningful it is to the attendees.
Kudos to Sarah Boyd who created this kickass community where information is shared and passions are ignited. Saturday November 5th, Simply Stylist returns to New York again with another impressive roster who I’m sure we will all learn from once again. In this ever-changing landscape of digital influence, it truly is a day to celebrate what we can all bring to the table. How to sustain our audiences. How to do what we love all the while.
Who is coming?
Another Sunday, another awards show, another E! Red Carpet. My assignment was to interview the night’s winners backstage for our LIVE After Party show. What a thrill! (The fan girl in me came out when Rami Malek made his way to me rather sweaty and smelling delicious! I digress.)
Anyway, always an essential and fun part of the day – my GLAM story.
It always starts with the dress and my stylist Becca Gross found several, but we quickly narrowed it down to this dramatic Stello gown. Since I would be working inside and it was a party atmosphere, we felt the strong shoulders and sheer underlay would create quite the wow factor! She found gorgeous ice at Simon G which dripped all over my fingers and wrists. The earrings from XIV Karats perfectly complemented the high neck.
It was obvious the hair needed to be back and off my face to show the neckline and open back. Ashlee Rose Boots showed me an inspiration photo of the double bun and I fell in love immediately. Her execution was total perfection. My favorite up-do ever.
Working with Maria Vargas so often is such a treat because she knows my face and knows what looks work on me and what doesn't. I can hold bold colors well and this cranberry purple haze eyeshadow was just the edge the overall look needed. She always gives me the most dewy amazing skin with the perfect amount of highlight. Seriously dreamy makeup by my friend and insane artist.
A huge thank you to this phenomenal squad and last but not least, Ginger Duran. Picture taker, drink maker, cheer leader. She makes my world go ‘round and I’d be on the floor a hot sweaty mess if it weren’t for her.
Until next year!
Welcome to Fall.
This month, let's lift each other up to be the healthiest, fittest, strongest and sexiest women we can be.
For the last few weeks, I've been cutting out meat from my diet and have been replacing alcohol with exercise, and I can feel the difference. Whatever your goal is, make sure it's realistic, achievable and just remember to take it one day at a time.
Here at #teamCATTWALK, every Tuesday throughout September, we'll be training to achieve our goal of running 5 miles without stopping, (wish us luck!).
Motivation is the key for change. For myself, I love fashion, so some fresh new pairs of shorts, tops and Nike shoes have kicked me right into gear.
Our end goal is the same - to be the healthiest, happiest and strongest versions of ourselves.
Follow our progress on theCATTWALK Instagram, Facebook and Twitter pages and send us your pictures, motivation and top fitness tips too. Invite your friends to join in as well, because after all, we're all in this together so let's show September what we're made of.
I hope you get inspired to join our journey. Don't forget, you've got this!
Loose fitting and mesh, this tank won't weigh you down no matter how hot and sweaty you get.
Water during workout is so crucial to keeping that skin glowing and body moving... and carrying it in glass keeps it clean and pure. My new Soma bottle takes it to the next level with a modern bamboo lid.
Not your typical shorts. These lightweight must-haves comes with a waterproof compartment keeping your keys and I.D. protected, are double lined and I guarantee they keep you wedgie free!
I don’t think there’s a single female who would debate that wearing pretty bras and undies is an instant mood-enhancer. Slipping into delicate, lacy lingerie can take you from ‘meh’ to ‘marvelous’ real quick. I’ve been a fan of Journelle for some time because not only is it decidedly GORGEOUS, it also feels good against my skin. It’s not fussy, but rather a barely there peekaboo pop of sex. And heck, what’s wrong with that? Here are some of my favs.
Discovered a few more at Journelle’s amazing penthouse party at the Chateau the other night.
Girlbands, crocs, & my first red carpet!
Welcome to Catt Chat: Intern Edition Pt 1!
Summer's coming to an end, and you know what that means... cozy sweaters, pumpkin spice everything, and most importantly, BACK TO SCHOOL!
Thanks to the Philanthropic Society of Los Angeles and Lauren Gores, my boys and teamCATTWALK were able to join me in volunteering at their 2016 Back to School Giveaway event! We were able to help out at the You & Lu tent handing out backpacks to the littlest ones. Extremely grateful to know that 5,000 kids got a new backpack filled with goodies to get them through the school year.
I’m crazy. This video is proof of that. But ya know what, I’m having fun!
As I continue to grow #theCATTWALK with my amazing team, I thought it would be cool to give you some Cattfidential access in to what goes on behind the scenes. As you can tell from the images on my homepage as of this moment, the pics are outdated. Shorter hair. Darker hair. Tired fashion. So… this video is about capturing new, fresh, updated pics to live on #theCATTWALK the rest of this summer. The way I see it is if I’m going to continue inspiring YOU, I have to stay inspired as well! It was honestly so fun finding fashion and beauty inspo for this shoot. And then to make our golden goddess summer vibe come to life - now that’s MAGIC! Everything made possible by: Vibe Tribe, Ginger Duran, Fiona Zaring, Megan Crean, Maria Vargas, David Naumann and special thank you to Juliet for the space.
I'm busy. Like, always in the fast-lane kind of busy. And because of the nature of my job, I am often in the public eye. Either on TV each day, shooting images for #theCATTWALK, or attending the occasional red carpet event. There's also my incessant snapping away for social media, appearing in front of hundreds of people when emceeing shows and events, and oh yeah - looking presentable at my kids' functions and activities!
All of this hustle and bustle means a whole lot of outfits. And with each of these looks, I've got to look put together! I used to spend hours trying to iron in an effort to prep my clothes. Who has the time? (Or patience?!) I've also tried a few of those small portable steamers - almost a joke. And then, I discovered the big daddy of home steamers, SteamOne, and wow, problems solved. It's super user friendly, highly effective, and high tech. And a bonus, the design is just gorgeous.
As I'm gearing up for my trip to Chicago to discuss all things fashion and beauty as host of Simply Stylist next month, I'm planning on sharing my love of this product as one of my insider tips! A must-have for any stylist, designer, blogger, fashionista, or stylish modern woman on the go!