review: "the perks of being a wallflower"

If you close your eyes and go back it's easy to remember that time in high school you felt left out, when you felt even for just a second what it was like to feel alone. Even if you were voted Most Popular kid, there was a moment, maybe even in grammar school when you wondered if you belonged.

Maybe that feeling is what we go back to when we see a movie like "The Perks of Being a Wallflower." Receiving critical acclaim at The Toronto Film Festival, "The Perks of Being a Wallflower" is that essential film that you WILL talk about. It naturally brings up the conversation of "What were you like in high school?" This movie makes you think about what kind of person you were, what kind of person you are. For every person who was bullied and for every person who bullied, this is a movie you need to see.

watch the trailer

This film is based on the critically acclaimed novel of the same title and is the story of Charlie, a freshman, who meets and is befriended by two seniors who change his life. This movie WILL bring you right back to high school and memories of the politics of lunch tables, Trapper-Keepers and struggling to find 'your people.' Emma Watson, best known for her role in the "Harry Potter" movies does an outstanding job in her role as Sam, a senior who befriends Charlie but it's really Logan Lerman (Charlie) and Ezra Miller (Patrick) who steal this movie with their impassioned roles as misfits just trying to get by in high school. I would watch these three actors working together again just reading the phone book out loud.

There are so many moments in this film that are beautiful, touching, raw, sweet and cruel all surrounded by a phenomenal soundtrack and lines that you will be repeating. Lines like "You may not be able to control where you came from but you can control where you go from here." So, maybe high school wasn't your finest moment. Maybe you grew up poor or gawky. Maybe you played the pretty but dumb card so you'd fit in with your popular yet dim friends. Maybe you were a bully because you were afraid you would be bullied.


The thing is, who you were does not define you. If you're not proud of who you were, own it, leave it and be that person you know that you can be.

That's what "The Perks of Being a Wallflower Does." It gives you hope. And it makes you feel good. Isn't that what you need? A little happy?

happy, surprised kitty

This happy little kitty is just awesomeness. Go ahead. Try not to smile.

happy food: wildly good chicken lettuce wraps

Do you ever crave something and you just can't stop thinking about it? I felt this way last week about P.F. Chang's Chicken Lettuce Wraps. I was at the mall walking past the restaurant and I smelled that dizzying scent of these delicious appetizers and from then on I couldn't stop thinking about them but at a whopping 530 calories and 2090 grams of sodium per serving, it wasn't worth ruining the healthy adventure that I am on.

I wondered if I could make something similar at home. I started searching online and there are literally hundreds of recipes for Chicken Lettuce Wraps. On Monday I tried several different versions. They all tasted good but this is the recipe that both L and I loved. With the clear tang of the wine, the creaminess of the peanut butter and the fresh zing of the ginger, these chicken lettuce wraps were even better than the restaurant version. Plus, we both felt good about all the healthy choices we made that day. Delicious + healthy = Happy food!

* This also makes a good gluten-free dinner.

Easy Healthier Chicken Lettuce Wraps Recipe


2 tablespoon olive oil 
1 tablespoon minced garlic (3 cloves)
1 cup chopped onion
1 pound ground chicken 
4 tablespoons white wine
3 tablespoons hoisin sauce 
2 tablespoon of peanut butter (no sugar added)
2  teaspoons low-sodium soy sauce
1 teaspoon hot sauce
2 teaspoons minced ginger 
1 head of butter lettuce


Carefully peel leaves from Butter Lettuce. Wash gently, pat dry and set aside in refrigerator to keep cool and crisp.

In a small bowl mix wine, hoisin sauce, peanut butter, soy sauce and hot sauce. Set aside.

Add olive oil to a large saute pan. Over medium heat add garlic until golden and add chopped onion. Saute for 3 minutes. Turn stove to medium-high and add ground chicken. Cook thoroughly (roughly 5 minutes). Add minced ginger, stir and add the wine/peanut butter sauce to the saute pan. Cook another 3-5 minutes until sauce is incorporated.

Serve approximately 2 tablespoons per lettuce leaf. This is filling and makes a great dinner in itself.

  • These can be made vegan by using a ground chicken substitute (available in the dairy section of Whole Foods). I tried this version as well and it was wonderful.
  • If you're short of time, instead of mincing ginger and garlic yourself, try using the frozen version made by Dorot. This clever product features spices in mini-cubes. It's a great time saver. Available at Whole Foods and other markets (frozen section).
  • If you like bamboo shoots or water chestnuts, add them to the wine/peanut butter sauce at the beginning. Prepare by draining, rinsing and chopping these two vegetables the sauce and combine.
  • Try using fresh ground peanut butter (available at Whole Foods) or all natural peanut butter without added sugar or palm oil for a taste that really adds depth to this meal.
  • If you are concerned about gluten, this is a gluten-free recipe. I used Kikkoman low-sodium soy sauce which has a <5 ppm of detectable gluten.
  • I use Kame brand Hoisin sauce which is gluten-free as well. 

the light in you

surprise from chef joy: balsamic strawberries (recipe)

I have a friend who is a brilliant chef who also believes in bringing more happy into her life. A couple days ago she asked me if I would be open to trying treats/snacks/new recipes.  Knowing that Chef Joy has an eclectic background as a professional clown, chef and performer, I knew this was an opportunity I couldn't turn down. When a chef says "I want to make happy food for you" you say yes.

I promised  Chef Joy that as long as it didn't involved meat or shellfish I was in. I would try anything.

So, here is what Chef Joy brought me for her first "Surprise! It's Happy Food!" complete with her note:

Happygirl note

I've heard of strawberries drizzled with balsamic vinegar but I'd never tried them. I assumed vinegar belonged in my salad. To me, strawberries are served with whipped topping. However, as I promised Chef Joy, I would try anything.  I was surprised.  The first bite I closed my eyes. The poppity pop pop of intense strawberry made me smile. The strawberry was somehow 'strawberrier' with the balsamic syrup.  It reminded me of a dessert you would be served by the elderly owner of an elegant little cafe in Provence.  This one is a hit. 

smitten: an interview with designer and icon rachel roy

photo courtesy of Ashley Boero
designer and icon rachel roy
(photo courtesy of Ashley Boero)

Sometimes a girl just needs a pair of shoes to lift her spirits. Yes, sometimes they are running shoes that make you feel bouncy and fast and happy but sometimes, you come across very special shoes that make you feel beautiful and ladylike. This is something designer Rachel Roy excels at.

Last night at a lovely (and yes, very ladylike event complete with sparkly lemonade-cucumber drinks and hors d'oeuvres on silver trays) Rachel debuted her new Footwear and Dress Salon Collection at the Nordstrom downtown Seattle flagship store. (10% of the day's sales were donated to the Pacific Northwest Ballet's Backstage Pass program.)

There is a reason that fashion standouts like First Lady Michelle Obama, Kate Hudson, Jennifer Garner and Penelope Cruz are drawn to Rachel's collections. Her style is tailored yet cool and luxe. Wearing  Rachel Roy whether it's a trench coat, illusion dress or houndstooth heels adds that punch of confidence.

Last night I spoke with Rachel and I became smitten. You will too.

The Happygirl: It's so good to meet you, Rachel! It's such a great event tonight! You look so happy. What makes you happy?

Rachel Roy: Oh, a lot of things! I try to surround myself with love, good intent, being around people with good energy and good spirit who want to be people that don't mind fighting for the sake of good and who want to learn.

HG: Are there are particular things that you love?

Rachel: Oh! I love candles, incense, good food, good wine, good tea, shopping, bubble baths. . .

HG: Is there a scent that makes you happy?

Rachel: Yes! Red roses. Jo Malone Red Roses is my favorite perfume. I love the body lotion. It reminds me of everything magical and glamorous that I aspire to be. This scent reminds me of 1940's movie icons. . .

HG: Is there a movie that makes you happy?

Rachel: Yes! Lots of movies. If I want fashion and inspiration "The Women"-- the 1930's version. If I want a good love story, "The Notebook." Each and every time I cry with my 12 year-old daughter.

HG:  What is you idea of a perfect Saturday?

Rachel: Good question. Sleeping in in my bed. That makes me happy! It's like a cloud with soft pillows and yummy sheets. Being with my girls, of course, and surrounding myself with love and fun, somewhere where we are in the sun and we can hear the ocean with people who care about us around us.

(note: Here's where Rachel did something that no other interviewee has ever done. She flipped the interview around and started asking me questions.)

Rachel: What makes you happy?

HG: Wow. Being around other people who are happy. Just being around people who are honest and who choose happiness in their lives.

(note: When I first met Rachel I introduced myself as The Happygirl.)

Rachel: Tell me about The Happygirl.

HG: It's the adventure guide to getting your happy back. It's about living your life with intention even after loss that you feel like you can't rebound from. . .

Rachel: So you found out how to do that and you're passing the tools on. . .Oh, I love that! You ARE The Happygirl.

HG: So are YOU!

One of the things that stood out for me about Rachel is this moment: Before the event started I watched a 12 year-old girl (accompanied by her sweet dad) carefully taking photos of the shoes displayed and patiently waiting to meet Rachel. It was an awesome moment to behold when she got the chance to meet Rachel and talk with her about fashion.  There were also the friends who came to the event together and squealed when Rachel took a picture with them and the fashion stylist who seemed almost apoplectic and who could barely speak when Rachel smiled at him.

Thank you to Nordstrom for hosting this event and to Rachel Roy for not just being a style icon but for being the kind of person a 12 year-old girl will always remember.

* Which shoes did I buy? The black and white houndstooth 'Ana' on the left. Do you like them?

review: the starbucks verismo

the starbucks verismo 580

Sometimes you need a latte and you need it. Right. Now. And sometimes it positively has to be a Starbucks. Enter the new Verismo, Starbucks at-home coffee/latte/espresso machine. How does it compare?

A review machine arrived last week and so far we have made dozens of lattes, espresso shots and cups of coffee. We compared these drinks to our current at-home coffee machines including the Keurig and Nespresso Lattissima machines. I prefer the Keurig because there are hundreds of different flavors available. L. like the Nespresso for the pure, deep espresso taste. Comparing the Verismo to these two machines, if you are a Starbucks fan, this is clearly going to be a product you will love when you can't get out to a Starbucks. All the drinks we tried were similar to the store's offerings with the small exception being that the lattes weren't as hot as I would expect them to be. They were hot, yes, but not as hot as it would be if it were served to you in-store. Also, the pods were on the expensive side ($1.61 for a latte, $1 coffee)

Interesting notes

Update 10.16.12 There have been several comments regarding the drip tray which fills easily with leftover milk/coffee.  It doesn't affect your coffee drink.  However, it's unappealing. If you experience this problem, contact Starbucks to alert them. Hopefully the next model will fix this issue.
  • There are two models: The 580 (base at $199) and the 585 (premium at $399)
  • The Starbucks Verismo uses only Starbucks pods unlike the Keurig which allows you hundreds of variations for coffee, tea and hot chocolate flavors
  • The pods are made from Starbucks 100 percent arabica beans, the same coffee served in the Starbucks restaurants
  • To make lattes, you use 1 powdered milk pod made from 2% milk and 1 espresso pod (I like my  lattes STRONG so I use two espresso pods + 1 milk pod)
  • The 580  and 585 models will be available 10/2 at specialty retailers and 10/16 (base only) at Starbucks locations
  • Pod prices: 
    • Caffe Latte Pack 8 Espresso + 8 Milk pods = $12.95 ($1.61 serving)
    • Espresso (12 pods) = $11.95 ($1 shot/serving)
    • Coffee (12 pods) = $11.95 ($1 cup/serving)
  • To make a Vanilla latte brew 1 milk pod, 1 espresso pod and mix with 1 Tbsp. Vanilla syrup

If you can't start the day without your cup of Starbucks, this product is ideal for you. If you prefer choices other than Starbucks (cocoa or tea), the Keurig is the better option.

free doughnuts on national talk like a pirate day

Sometimes meetings can get so boring that you start trying to read the faint words left imprinted on the white board or you actually stop listening and start wondering what the soup of the day is at the Cafe on 7th. Today, however, you have something else to look forward to. It's National Talk Like a Pirate Day and if you go to Krispy Kreme and talk like a pirate when you order,  ("Arrrr, a doughnut, if you please!") Krispy Kreme will give you a free doughnut! Wear a full pirate costume and they'll reward your effort with a free dozen of Krispy Kreme Original Glazed doughnuts.

That's right, matey. Grab your friends for a doughnut and coffee and say things like "Arrrr, drink up me hearties!" (Granted, everyone at the table will be reminded of that time they rode Pirates of the Caribbean attraction at Walt Disney World and will be humming theme song the rest of the day.)

So today, on a Wednesday in the middle of September, have some fun.

AND get a free donut!

First, here is the Pirate Name Generator. You may call me Captain Melinda the Fearsome.

Next, watch this. Johnny Depp riding the Pirates of the Caribbean attraction and meeting his animatronic self.

Things to be Happy About This Week

1. Chefs like The Barefoot Contessa who teach us how to make meals to linger over

Lemon Fusilli with Arugula, last night's dinner that blew L. away

2. Thursday is World Gratitude Day

This is Sister Marlene, my Senior English teacher. 
I'm sending her a pumpkin latte to thank her for teaching me discipline.

National Gratitude Day was established by the United Nations to honor those who have done good deeds around the world. Who wows you in your life? Take this opportunity to buy your admin a pumpkin latte, send a card to your mom, drop homemade pumpkin bread off at your local firehouse, write your favorite teacher a thank you note. . .How cool would the world be on Thursday if we all did one thing to show someone just how awesome they are?

3.  The album, "Underwater" by Joshua Radin

It's the background music to your perfect autumn weekends.

4.   The series premieres of NBC comedies "Up All Night," "The Office" and "Parks & Recreation" are this Thursday.

Thursdays in the summer weren't the same without Reagan and Chris.

5. Mrs. Miller sings the hits. Yes, this is real. Yes, you will imagine your grandmother singing the Beatles.

happy projects: the easy, 5-minute headband

I'm a headband girl. Sometimes it's a headband/ponytail combo (for working out) and sometimes it's just a headband like the one above, something sweet and delicate that adds just the right punch to a simple chambray blouse. Headbands, though, can be expensive though like these exquisite ones from a department store costing $30 and up.

These are beautiful but they weren't just the right Happygirl color for a big event we have coming up so I stopped by our local crafts store (Michael's is a great source) and found the materials to make my own headbands in a variety of colors and textures from silk accordion pleats with flowers to teal and charcoal glitter and red velvet. The best part? No hot glue gun was involved!

Each of these headbands took less than 5 minutes to make.

How to Make Headbands in Less Than Five Minutes 
(without glue!)

The key: the glue 

When the associate cutting the ribbon asked me what I was planning to do with the material, I told her they were for headbands.  She was thrilled because she said her team had just tested out a headband project using: 
  • hot glue
  • double-sided tape
  • glue dots
  • regular glue

There was one clear winner.

Wondertape, a double sided heat-resistant clear tape that is not susceptible to heat, cold or water won this challenge. The professional crafter said that when you use hot glue on a project like this, the project can crack in cold or melt in heat. The hot glue can also transfer through your material and there's the risk of hot glue burns. You have none of these issues with Wondertape. This is why this project is great for kids and for 'girls night in parties'. (Wine + hot glue guns do not work well together!)  She also explained that when you press the ribbon and the headband together that they will fuse and it is permanent. 

Here is how to make a headband with Wondertape.

Supplies (all available at craft stores like Michael's)
Metal headbands (for this project I used 1/4 inch)
Assorted ribbon (1/4 - 1/2 inch with. You will need 17 inches per headband. 2 yards = 2 headbands)
Wondertape (1/4 inch)
(optional) Embellishments


1. Clean headband of any tags or tag residue making sure it is clean and dry. Cut ribbon to length.

2. Using your ribbon, measure how long the headband is (leaving 1-inch extra at either end to tuck under). Mine were 15 inches plus two inches to tuck under = 17 inches. Start attaching tape to one end of headband leaving a 1-inch 'tail' to wrap on underside. Slowly press tape firmly and evenly onto metal headband until you reach the other end again leaving a 1-inch tail. Cut tape and wrap under so the tape is now adhered under both ends. Press tape firmly against metal.

3. Remove red plastic protective covering on tape revealing the double side of the tape. Be careful not to touch the super sticky tape. 

4. Take your ribbon and starting slowly at one end (leaving a 1-inch tail), begin pressing ribbon firmly against the metal headband, being sure that it is centered and even. Slowly continue until you have taped the ribbon to the other end, wrapping the two 1-inch 'tails' under the headband. (If you have extra ribbon on the underside that is longer than your tape, cut the extra so the ribbon ends at the same place as the glue.)

5. (optional)  To add embellishments (flowers etc.) use a small drop of glue (like E-6000) and firmly press embellishment to ribboned headband.

That's it! I made all four headbands from scratch in under 20 minutes. The cost for each? 

                  $3.49 (headband)
                  $1.29 (ribbon)
                  $1.00 (embellishment)

thanks to Sophie and Trinity for their help!

what to wear this weekend 9.15

smitten: an interview with lee rhodes, glassybaby ceo

In a crisis there are some people who become paralyzed and wonder what the hell they're going to do when it looks like the odds are stacked against them. (Right. Full disclosure:  Yes, that's me.) Then there are people, people like Lee Rhodes who show just what it means to be a warrior.

about lee rhodes & glassybaby

Lee Rhodes, is an entrepreneur, warrior and the founder of glassybaby. When she was diagnosed with a rare form of lung cancer, she not only fought the cancer and won but it was during this period that she also created a company and a product of beauty that stands for something. During her lowest points, Lee sought moments of solace watching the glow from a candle flickering inside a glass. Feeling the healing power of the hope from light in the votive, Lee learned how to blow glass and found artisans who shared her vision. Her goal was to create something small and beautiful that would bring hope to those who needed light in their lives. And so she did.

Today over 500 glassybabies are created each day by glassblowers in the Madrona studio.  Hold a glassybaby up to a sunbeam and you can see the multi-hues in each glass. Watch the flicker of a candle on an indigo night and you feel cozy and safe.  While collectors, designers and glassybaby lovers enjoy the simple aesthetic of a glassybaby, they aren't the only ones benefitting from the beauty of this votive. So far, glassybaby goodwill had donated close to a million dollars to help people touched by cancer.  Giving back remains a firm part of the company's culture.

At my lowest in May 2009 I couldn't even imagine getting out of bed, never mind putting on my warrior mindset and thinking about the future. Luckily, people like Lee exist and they're willing to share their experiences.
the interview

Happygirl: Lee, glassybaby came from what many people would call a dark period when you were fighting against cancer. Many people would implode on themselves but you thought of a new company.  How did you stay positive during a time when most people couldn’t think of starting a company? Was there ever a point where you were frustrated or depressed? If so, how did you get yourself out of that period?

Lee Rhodes: There was a period when I was sick when I was afraid but I had three small children and no time to sit around and think about that.  I was very busy taking care of all of their needs.  I did find that I needed to slow down and glassybaby helped me do that.  I would light glassybaby and they helped me get to that peaceful place where I could heal.

I never intended to build a business but had a product that helped me and at the same time I saw a real need in chemotherapy waiting rooms.  I met people who could not afford basics like groceries when they were sick. I saw firsthand that there was a huge hole that wasn't covered by health insurance.  glassybaby started as a way to give back money to help patients like that with basic items they need to heal.  Today, glassybaby has donated almost a million dollars from sales to charities that help people.  That is why the company started and that is what glassybaby is all about.   
HG: You were selected as the Entrepreneur of the Year by Entrepreneur Magazine. Is there anything you know now that you wish you knew back in glassybaby’s infancy?

Lee: I have learned that I shouldn't always say everything that I am thinking all the time.  When I am at work I try to think it over for a few minutes and then respond.   

 HG: You have talented glassblowers. It seems whenever we’re here they are laughing, enjoying and loving what they do. The day I was here recently there were a line of dogbeds and some happy dogs. Tell us about the atmosphere working here.

Lee: glassybaby is fortunate to have a very professional group of glassblowers.  They are professionally trained and talented and they work together with a wonderful sense of camaraderie.  People walking through our studio tell us they can feel the joy.  Our artists are making a product they love and that gives back to help other people.  We are all behind that mission and it shows.

 HG: glassybaby collectors are emotional about their collections. Why do you think that is?  What’s the most unusual story you’ve heard about a glassybaby?

Lee: You can't light a glassybaby and not be touched.  There is something about the flame and color that people truly feel.  We are selling an experience and not a product.

glassybaby allow people to heal, feel, laugh, think and celebrate and we are so grateful people share those stories with us all the time.  

We just heard from a customer who was selling her house and the buyer wanted her to include her glassybaby in the sale.  The glassybaby made the house feel like a home and the new owner was trying to preserve that special feeling glassybaby brought to that house.

HG: How do you come up with new colors? Is it seasonal? Have you thought about what comes next?

Lee: Our colors are dictated by what glass, color bar is available.  Each glassybaby consists of three layers of glass:  clear, color and then clear.   The colored layer is a heated glass color bar that comes from Europe.  The recipes for those bars are 500 years old and top secret.  We import and buy the color bar depending on what the companies are making.

 HG: What does a perfect happy day look like for you?

Lee: A happy day for me is when life doesn't seem overwhelming.  I can stop and appreciate all the good around me. 

Enter to win the September Happygirl Giveaway of a Hudson glassybaby and Mystic Topaz earrings here

introducing happy places - dallas, texas with victoria snee

Lobsters. The Nantucket ferry. Salt air. Dunkin Donuts coffee. James Taylor. Pumpkins. 

These words-- these words make me happy because they remind me of Massachusetts. They remind me of home. Last month when I was in my hometown in Massachusetts on vacation I realized that it is in this place where I am content and happy.  Driving past my best friend Mimi's house I remembered the prickly sting of the hot sun on my wet skin as we splashed in her pool every summer day throughout high school. I sat quietly in a pew of the church I attended as a little girl with my grandparents. When I closed my eyes I could almost feel my grandmother's soft hand on mine, reminding me to be still. Each time I got on the Mass Turnpike, I remembered the trips to The Cape, to my college in New Hampshire and to my boyfriend's (now husband's) college in Syracuse. It's the highway that led me to happy places, places where I am just a girl named TJ.

When I got back to the west coast after my vacation, friends said things like "You look so relaxed. You look so happy. You're glowing. What's up with that?" "I went back to my happy place," I said.  I wondered what other people considered to be their happy place so I started asking friends "Where is it in this world that makes you happy?" What I learned is that a happy place is the city you moved to after college. It's the vacation spot you travel to every year. It's the place you moved to across the country so you could be with your partner. It is the town you grew up in and the place you love.

Here at the Happygirl, we want to know "What place makes you happy? Why do you love your town? Is it the place you grew up in or the place you live in now?"

Welcome to Happy Places.

We're starting deep in the heart of Texas. We asked Dallas fashion expert and beauty author Victoria Snee to tell us about her place, her Dallas. 

Victoria Snee  Dallas, Texas

Describe Dallas and why you love it in one sentence:
From the friendly people to the fabulous food and shopping to the warm weather and, of course, the Dallas Cowboys, there is just no place like Big D!

Three words that characterize Dallas: 
Proud, chic, fashionable.

What do you do in Dallas?
I am the Director of Public Relations for NorthPark Center.

How long have you lived in Dallas?
I have lived in Dallas for 20 years.

Willowbend Fitness

Favorite way to spend a Saturday in Dallas:
My Saturday always starts off with a good cardio workout at Willowbend Fitness and then food shopping for the week at Central Market. Then, I like to get my hair done at Dry Bar with Jenny or Bonnie and make-up done by Jeff with Giorgio Armani cosmetics at Neiman Marcus NorthPark. I might have lunch at Patrizios where I always order my favorite grilled chicken salad. I usually like to spend the afternoon shopping at NorthPark or I might get a manicure with Joey at Frederic Fekkai or a facial and massage at the Four Seasons. We always like to go out for dinner with friends on the weekends. Some of our favorite restaurants are Al Biernat's, Ocean Prime, Capital Grille and Nick and Sam's

When you are away from Dallas and you return what do you look forward to the most?
 I usually look forward to just spending quiet time at home and walking outside with my husband through the Arbor Hills Nature Preserve by our home in Plano. 

What is the one attraction in Dallas that you will always take your visitors to?
I love to show visitors Cowboys Stadium. It is so massive and impressive and home of my favorite football team!

Nick & Sams

Is there a food associated with Dallas? If so, where do you find the best? 
I think there are a lot of different foods associated with Dallas--barbecue, steak and Tex-Mex. Even though I have lived most of my life in Texas, I am not much of a barbecue fan. For steak, I like Nick and Sam's and for Tex Mex, I love Gloria's.

Neiman Marcus

What are the top three happiest places for you in Dallas? 
Definitely NorthPark Center (especially Neiman Marcus), playing tennis on the courts at Gleneagles Country Club and spending time in Frisco with my goddaughter.

What's your favorite restaurant? (What do you order?) 
I always order fish whenever we go out since I don't like cooking it at home. I love the salmon at Al Biernat's and Nick and Sam's.

What do you wish people knew about Dallas? 
That we don't all live on ranches and ride horses!

Any insider tips for Dallas? 
I have a big sweet tooth so I love the cupcakes at Gigi's and the cookies&cream popcorn at Uptown Popcorn. Nothing beats breakfast at Breadwinners. The Rattlesnake Bar at the Ritz Carlton serves the most delicious cocktails and I also love afternoon tea at the hotel as well. 

Do you have any other favorite places you like to visit? 
I LOVE Paris! I have been several times including my honeymoon. We also took a trip to Italy for our 10 year anniversary in 2011 and I fell in love with the fashionable streets of Milan. I came back home broke!  

Victoria Snee's Happy Places (Dallas)

Willowbend Fitness
Central Market
Dry Bar
NeimanMarcus NorthPark
Frederic Fekkai
Four Seasons
Al Biernet's
Ocean Prime
Capital Grille
Nick and Sam's
Arbor Hills Nature Preserve
Cowboys Stadium
Gleneagles Country Club
Uptown Popcorn
Rattlesnake Bar

About Victoria Snee

Victoria Snee is an AP Award winning journalist and author of The Beauty Buzz. She currently works as Northpark Center’s Fashion and Beauty Expert.

Victoria joined MIX 102.9 in 2007 as co-host of the morning drive radio show “The Morning Mix.” In 2009, she was named one of Dallas’ Ten Most Beautiful Women by D Magazine. Victoria has covered lifestyle, fashion, beauty and entertainment stories in DFW for the past 12 years working as a reporter on CW33 News at Nine. She regularly traveled to Los Angeles and New York City interviewing major Hollywood stars at movie premieres and red carpet events.

Victoria started her broadcast career working on FOX 4’s morning show “Good Day.” She is a graduate of Southern Methodist University in Dallas with a BA in Broadcast Journalism.

Victoria lives in Plano with her husband, former FOX 4 News reporter, Jeff Crilley.

Victoria's book "The Beauty Buzz" is available here.