In this brilliant spoof of Gwyneth Paltrow’s Holiday Gift Guide, Megan Amram invokes the Goop Queen’s voice and sells some “must-have” gift guide items for a totally reasonable price, like the $106 million yoga mat made out of a Picasso.


Warning: There are no chicken coops for sale in this year’s Williams-Sonoma Christmas catalog.

In the spirit of gift guides, you can check out my Gifts That Give Back,  Holiday Gift Guide 2015 for kids and grown ups and Holiday Gift Guide for New Moms.


If snow globes were honest they might show truer scenes from the holidays… like your family sitting in the living room staring at their phones.

“The more you speak about Islam and against all Muslims, the more terrorists we create.”

“This moment, this election, these years represent the death throes of exclusive white male power in the United States. That the snarling fury and violence are contemporary does not make them less real than the terrors of previous periods; it makes them more real, at least to those of us living through them. And the presidential-primary contest, while absurdist and theatrical, is reflecting very real fury and violence in the non-electoral world: the burning of crosses and black churches, the execution of black men by police, the resistance of male soldiers to women in elite combat positions, a white man with a history of rape and violence against women himself a “warrior for the babies” after killing people at an abortion clinic, and a younger white man killing nine black churchgoers with the explanation “You rape our women, and you’re taking over our country.”


LA  & OC families looking for some holiday activities might want to check out The Grove on 3rd Street,  Knott’s Merry Farm L.A. Zoo LightsDisney on Ice presents Frozen, or a whole host of Christmas plays coming up including A Christmas Carol at A Noise Within and South Coast Rep,  and The Nutcracker at Long Beach Ballet and Orange County Festival Ballet. For the little ones, there’s Peter Pan and Tinkerbell: A Pirate Christmas at the Pasadena Playhouse. To add to the list of Christmas plays in Southern California, the Rubicon Theatre is also putting up Charles Dickens’ A Christmas CarolTickets will sell out quickly to Festival Theatre Ballet’s The Nutcracker at Irvine Barclay Theatre.  Winter Fest at  the OC Fair and Event Center kicked off this weekend and if you are in the valley, check out Candy Cane Lane off the Winnetka exit of the 101 North. Follow the lanes of traffic!

There are also several cool exhibitions currently running at several local museums. The Rain Room at LACMA should be at the top of this list and for older children, In Focus: Daugerreotypes and Ishiuchi Miyako’s thought-provoking Postwar Shadows at The Getty Center and the fall exhibitions at OCMA are some different weekend activities. For a night of great theatre and music, go see Jason Robert Brown conduct The Bridges of Madison County at the Ahmanson Theatre, starring Elizabeth Stanley and Andrew Samonsky. 

Christmas in New York is already in full effect with the Radio City Christmas Spectacular,  the Norwegiean spruce at Rockefeller Center Plaza, and the holiday markets, fares, and ice rinks are in no short supply.  For an added touch of whimsy, check out the Holiday Train Show at New York Botanical Garden or New York Theatre Ballet presents Keith Michael’s The Nutcracker. For more than eggnog and carols, check out Noises Off, the beloved comedy returning to Broadway this December, and be sure to get your tickets now for  David Harrower’s new play Blackbird starring Jeff Daniels and Michelle Williams.