All in the name of good health: Angelina Jolie and my friend Marisol, plus Runwalk 2013

This week we all heard of Angelina Jolie’s difficult medical decision, and subsequently, all the opinions surrounding her double mastectomy, as a preventive measure against breast cancer. Although I had never been a fan, I must now confess that I have newfound respect for her and for sharing her story.

The first person I thought about, almost immediately after reading her op-ed for the NYT, was my dear friend Marisol Rosas, who made the same decision and underwent the same surgery a few years ago.

Angelina Jolie and Marisol have things in common: the experience of losing their mother at a young age, the family history, the genes, and a young family of their own to think of. I can not imagine being in the position of having to make that choice, but since Marisol is such a brave and beautiful soul, it does not surprise anybody that knows her that she overcame the fear and went through with the experience with courage and grace.

Marisol is now volunteering to educate other women in a similar situation to learn about their choices, as part of an organization called FORCE: Facing Our Risk of Cancer Empowered, where she volunteers as their National Help Line Coordinator. I am very proud of my friend, who has my total admiration for overcoming this difficult situation and now deciding to help others. She has a fundraising page for FORCE where you can make a donation, in any amount, towards this cause. Please take a look at her story, it’s both in English and Spanish and written by her sister Gaby. The page link is here: http://www.firstgiving.com/fundraiser/MarisolRosas/heroes

Click on the image to read Marisol's story and donate.

Click on the image to read Marisol’s story and donate.

You can imagine that after the Angelina Jolie story came out, there was a lot of interest in all of this, and Marisol was on television the next morning on Univision San Diego.

Click on the link to watch the video (en español) and see how great she did on TV. The link to the interview is here: http://www.univisionsandiego.com/videos/?pl_id=21522&va_id=4058199

Bravo Marisol, we’re so proud of you!

♥♥♥

On a related note, last Saturday May 11 was the 20th annual Revlon RunWalk at the LA Coliseum, and –Full Disclosure– I was invited to take pictures and walk with Team Macy’s, who was one of the major sponsors.

The event always draws tens of thousands of people, women, men, entire families who have al been affected by breast cancer and other women’s cancers, and who all want to put an end to it.

There was joy and optimism in the air, even as you read the signs and the reasons why people were walking and participating. It always gets to me, reading those signs, with names and pictures of the people who’ve passed and the survivors who’ve beat it. We are all affected, we all must do what we can’t to support the fight against it.

Here are a few pictures of a wonderful event.

She's there EVERY year. The beautiful Ms. Halle Berry at the starting line.

She’s there EVERY year. The beautiful Ms. Halle Berry at the starting line.

Lilly Tartikoff, founder and organizer for RunWalk, and Andy Garcia, who came out to support and cheer everybody on.

Lilly Tartikoff, founder and organizer for RunWalk, and Andy Garcia, who came out to support and cheer everybody on.

All those signs you read, all the names, they are powerful reasons to walk and fight for a cure.

All those signs you read, all the names, they are powerful reasons to walk and fight for a cure.

Such a great group of people, getting up super early on a Saturday morning to walk: Team Macy's.

Such a great group of people, getting up super early on a Saturday morning to walk: Team Macy’s.

Walking into the LA Coliseum is such a great feeling. Here approaching the finish line.

Walking into the LA Coliseum is such a great feeling. Here approaching the finish line.

Wordless Wednesday: Hey…You look familiar!

Jesus, is that you? (Sunday October 14, at the AIDS Walk LA. A familiar face was among the thousands of walkers.)

“Jesus” walks the Walk right in front of the Beverly Center.

Macy’s Glamorama 2012, LA edition

The 30th annual Macy’s Glamorama fashion show benefitting AIDS Project LA was a night to remember.

The Orpheum Theater in downtown LA was a worthy setting for the fashion, the celebrities and the noble cause. I enjoyed it immensely and was particularly impressed with the production, continuing with the “British Invasion” theme that’s been popular this year. The music and the graphics were especially cool, and there was this huge video wall that made everything look bigger and brighter. It seems everyone who attended had a fabulous time. Bravo Macy’s!

Here are some photos of a fun night, hope you enjoy.

A night to remember. Macy’s Glamorama Los Angeles edition.

Sharon Stone has always supported the fight against AIDS. She spoke at the beginning of the show, insisting we must continue this fight until we have a cure.

Eduardo Verástegui enjoyed the show. Surprise to find him sitting in front of us. ¡Bella persona!

Part of the Tommy Hilfiger Fall 2012 collection.

Bar III, an exclusive Macy’s brand, had the coolest graphics.

The show had it’s sexy moments… like these “British imports” on top of a double decker bus.

And then they bared almost all, up closer… taco de ojo, amiguitas!

He was in the house…Sean John, alias Diddy, observing his fashion collection on stage.

The exclusive collection Nicole Richie for Macy’s Impulse launches this week at Macy’s stores. It’s beau-ti-ful!

Designs by Rachel Rachel Roy, a recurring favorite.

If I ever wear this jumpsuit by Rachel Roy, remind me to stand in front of a midnight blue polka dotted video wall to achieve this effect. (Very cool!)

Karmin performed the song that’s all over the radio now. It’s catchy, it’s cute…

More eye candy for the ladies…Robin Thicke perfomed a few songs that made you want to make out with him. I’m not kidding! He’s hot! (Never mind that he looks a little bit like his dad in Growing Pains.)

The after party at the neighboring Cal Mart building had all sorts of goodies. This sweets table presented by LA Times Image Mag.

Patron Tequila had their own “Build your own Mojito Bar” and the line was looong! Muy padre concepto…

My personal favorite: the See’s Candies table. Needless to say, I could’ve taken all that chocolate candy.

Time to celebrate! SALUD!

At the 2012 Revlon Run/Walk

The 19th annual EIF Revlon Run/Walk benefitting the fight against women’s cancers was held last weekend at USC and it was an event to remember. I attended and walked as part of Team Macy’s (one of the sponsors) and it was a powerful experience to see so many people come together and participate.

People of all ages and entire families all showed up to support the cause for a 5k walk around the LA Coliseum. Everybody had someone special they were walking for. Most people wore big signs and bibs mentioning their loved ones battling cancer who they were walking for and supporting, or honoring their memory, which was extremely moving to read and see. I saw a few que casi me hacen llorar, so it definitely makes me appreciate health and that we must do everything in our power to fight this disease.

I took some pictures of the event which I wanted to share below. If you are interested in participating and/or making a donation to find a cure for cancer, please visit http://do.eifoundation.org and see how you can get involved. The statistics mentioned were pretty scary if you are a woman, but you CAN fight it and beat it if you detect it early on. So if you’re around the age of 35 or older, you should request,and demand to your doctor if needed, to get started with mammogram testing once a year.

Women, we need to take care of ourselves. ¡Cuidémonos todas! Here’s to good health, positive vibes and Godspeed in finding a cure for cancer.

Around the USC campus before the walk, the fair starts really early around 6:30 am.

At the starting line on Figueroa Ave, everybody looking good and ready for a 5K.

Team Macy’s 2012 supports the cause. Macy’s is one of the major sponsors of the RunWalk.

The beautiful and amazing Halle Berry is the Revlon Spokesperson and year after year speaks at the event. I loved her new curly hairdo, rizado chinito chinito!

Look at those dimples! Mr. Mario Lopez also was there to support.

Matthew Morrison of Glee gives a big hug to Lilly Tartikoff, one of the cofounders of the Run/Walk.

So inspirational! Lilly Tartikoff, co-founder of the Run/Walk, knows we will find a cure.

Julia Goldin, Global Chief Marketing Officer from Revlon, cheers everyone on at the starting line and talks about why it’s so important to join the cause.

Stacy Kiebler also walked and spoke on why she supoprts the cause, since it has affected her family. She’s very nice in person, pero no llevo al George Clooney!

Halle speaks and tells us women: Starting at 35, ask to get a mammogram! “Early detection is our best defense!”

And then I look at her and think, Hmm como que she looks like la Whitney Houston, verdad? Un poquito.

Confetti and cheers at the start.

All cancer survivors received a pink hat honoring them.

After the walk, a few refreshments inside the LA Coliseum.

Yeah, Macy’s. ¡Asi se compra!

Cupcakes for all!

Big party at the Coliseum lawn for thousands of people.

What to do this weekend in LA:

Spring is in bloom and here we are already in the second weekend of May. Ayer festejamos a las Mamás mexicanas y el domingo May 13 we do it again para las Mamás in the US. Did you already get you Mom a nice gift? I hope you did!

But there are other things to include into your weekend festivities if you live in LA.

The Lea-LA Book Fair (La Feria del Libro en Español)  opens today at the Convention Center in DTLA, organized by la Universidad de Guadalajara. It’s a 3 day event that promises interesting book selections and purchases, and a number of author presentations and conferences. Click here for the complete program and go support la lectura en español. It is a free event for the entire family, lleven a los niños y compren libros en español, para que se vayan acostumbrando.  Goes on from Friday May 11 to Sunday May 13, 10 am to 6 pm.

Lea LA starts Friday May 11 and goes on til Sunday May 13, from 10 am to 6 pm. Don’t miss it.

Another big event this Saturday is the annual Revlon Run-Walk at the USC Campus in LA. It’s a major fundraising event for the fight against breast cancer. I’ll be participating in this walk with Team Macy’s, which is a major sponsor of the event and always supports the cause with a big team of volunteers and walkers. If you know anyone who is going through cancer, and you want to support them, you may want to check out this link and see how you can get involved.

Revlon Run Walk is happening Saturday May 12 at the USC Campus. Join the fight against Breast Cancer at do.eifoundation.org

National Wear Red Day: Supporting Heart Health and Go Red Por Tu Corazón

Today, February 3rd, is National Wear Red Day and if I may, I’d like to make a little public service announcement on behalf of the American Heart Association and Macy’s.

When was the last time you ever thought about YOUR HEART? And I mean your heart as an organ that keeps you alive, not as a symbol of romance or love, or broken heart that inspires a sad love song.

It’s a very startling statistic to find out that women rarely pay attention to the fact that heart disease, and cardiovascular disease, are the number one killers of women. We think that heart attacks are exclusive to men. But I was shocked to find out that it takes more lives than breast and ovarian cancer among women, and that we do not consider the risks.

The Go Red Por Tu Corazón campaign website, en español! Hagan click para ir al sitio.Tell your mother, tell your sisters, tell your friends.

To raise awareness of heart disease among women, the American Heart Association launched an initiative called “Go Red for Women” back in 2004, and you will be happy to know it has made a difference.

They have also, very wisely, created the initiative in Spanish, calling it “Go Red Por Tu Corazón”  (love the title in Spanglish!) and is reaching out to the Hispanic Community. Díganle a sus Mamás, a sus Tias, a sus Hermanas, a sus Amigas que lo lean. Spread the word!

I encourage you to visit the website, in Spanish (click here) and in English (click here) and learn how to participate, create awareness and take care of yourselves and your loved ones. It’s worth a few minutes of your time. It even has recipes and very useful tips on how to recognize the symptoms and warning signs of a stroke.

One of the sponsors of this campaign is my favorite store- MACY’S- who has contributed $28 million dollars to the cause since 2004.  They have a special sale going on today Friday Feb. 3, for anyone who shops at the store and is wearing red. What a great idea, since today ando de rojo! I think I’m gonna save me 20% on my purchases.

You can contribute and make a $2 dollar donation by getting the Go Red pin at Macy’s and by shopping on the exclusive WEAR RED items they have benefiting the American Heart Association.

You can purchase this pin for $2 and support Go Red Para Tu Corazón.

And you can also use the power of social media to donate. Visit the Macy’s fanbook page (click here) and create a Valentine by February 14th. They will donate $2 for each Valentine card sent, with a total of up to $250 thousand dollars in support of the Go Red Campaign. ¿Quien me quiere mandar una tarjetita de San Valentin?

Macy's is a wonderful sponsor of the Go Red Campaign. Click on the image to support the cause on their facebook page.


Walking the AIDS WALK LA 2011

The annual AIDS WALK Los Angeles took place last Sunday October 16th and it had an impressive turnout. I’ve done this walk for 3 years in a row and this year I noticed people were happier and much more spirited. Maybe it had to do with the weather, which was Biu-Ti-Ful…a bright, crisp, spotless LA Sunday morning, perfect for a 6 mile (10K) walk on the West Side.

I walked as part of the Macy’s Team, thanks to the invitation of my friend Olivia. I’ve said this before, and I’ll say it again, Macy’s is committed to the community and especially to the AIDS cause, donating millions of dollars each year. (So think of that every time you shop and know somehow it comes back to benefit someone else.)

It was fun to rediscover the neighborhood most of us drive through but never really notice when we’re on Santa Monica Blvd., or Melrose, or La Brea. We got to see all the little shops, restaurants, art galleries and murals at a walking pace, and we did a little window shopping and dreaming too.

Here are a few pix from the event and if you want to support this wonderful organization, please visit the AIDS Project Los Angeles website at apla.org

The Macy's Team at AIDS Walk LA 2011.

Meeting point was the Pacific Design Center.

The Abbey, the famous spot in the West Side, was the site of the VIP breakfast before the walk.

Congresswoman Linda Sanchez from the U.S. House of Representatives during her speech at the VIP breakfast. She promised to continue the fight for equal rights for homosexuals.

The starting line at Santa Monica Blvd.

Walking past the Marc Jacobs Store on Melrose.

The Paul Frank store is hot pink!

Around 30 thousand people showed up. This is 3rd Street and La Cienega, looking west.

 

Certificate of completion, another 10K under the belt!