Monday, December 24, 2007

'Twis The Day Before Xmas ...

... and all thru the house, everyone is runnin' around like mad cuz it's Xmas Eve and there is still so much to get taken care of before the big day tomorrow. Yeah, I realize this doesn't rhyme but there ain't much time to be doin' any rhymin'. Let's get thru the day's goss so that the holiday magic can get underway.

What better way to get things started this fine pre-Xmas day than with a story of love and romance that is sure to warm even the coldest cockles of one's heart. Britney Spears has been unlucky in love over the past few weeks, months and years ever since her fairytale marriage to backup dancer and wannabe rapper extraordinaire, Kevin Federline, ended in divorce late last year. Since her marriage ended, Britney has had a string of rumored hookups with this and that person but never seemed to find Mr. Right. They always say that people find love when they least expect it, when they stop looking for it -- love finds them. Sometimes it turns out that love was right there all the time, right in front of their face. This may be the case for Britney ... because it would seem that Brit Brit has found true love with one of the papparazzos who has been stalking photographing her around town recently. This is the story about how a girl and a man ... and a camera ... found love:

Photo credit: Splash News

Britney Spears is taking her love for paparazzi attention to a new level! Spears reportedly spent early Sunday morning in a Beverly Hills hotel room with a paparazzi photographer who regularly covers the troubled pop star. According to reports, the pair was holed up in Spears' room at the Peninsula Hotel until the wee hours of Sunday. The photographer, whose first name is Adnan, departed the hotel at 6 a.m. Sources say Spears left at around 9 a.m. and returned to her nearby home off Mulholland Drive. But when contacted by Us, the photographer denied any romance, saying, "We are just friends. She was just a little upset, pretty much about everything." According to Splash News Online, Spears' "wild date" began Saturday night with the photographer, who works for the Finalpixx photo agency, handing Spears his business card at a gas station after he heard she "liked" him. Soon after getting his card, Spears contacted him and, after meeting up, the pair was later spotted holding hands at a supermarket. "After discussing the possibility of him coming into her house she said that her house was too dirty and that she would rather go to a hotel," Splash reports. "So they changed cars and she went back to her house to freshen up while Adnan parked down the road and waited for her. She then came out in her car and they both drove to an L.A. hotel." Lo and behold, it's an Xmas miracle. See true love really does happen to those who truly deserve it ... [Source]

... and lookie here ... if you really truly deserve it then maybe true love can strike twice because after Britters was finished with her first paparazzo she was seen talking to a different photog ... that she eventually invited into her car with her:

Photo credit: Splash News

Ho Ho Ho seems so apropos, y'all! It's Xmas 2007, Britney Spears style!!! [Source]

In happier, less seedy news, Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt, who have decided to spend this Xmas in their new home of New Orleans, LA, used their superstar powers to call attention to the plight of displaced, homeless children still suffering in New Orleans in the wake of the devastation of Hurricane Katrina. Here are pics of Brangelina posing for pics with some of the effected kids at a press conference they appeared at over the weekend:

Photo credit: Wireimage

Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt used their star power Saturday to help The Children's Health Fund focus attention on the more than 46,000 children still displaced 2 1/2 years after hurricanes Katrina and Rita destroyed their homes. Jolie said her work as a goodwill ambassador for the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees prompted her to get involved with the CHF's effort. "This is the largest displacement of children in my own country so I want to learn as much as possible," she said at a news conference. A report issued earlier this month by the CHF found that 46,000 to 64,000 children affected by the hurricanes were still at risk for a host of medical, mental health and educational problems complicated by a lack of support services. "Many families are distressed about how long and difficult the recovery has been," said Dr. Irwin Redlener, president of the CHF and director of the National Center for Disaster Preparedness at Columbia University's Mailman School of Public Health, which conducted the study. "We're concerned that this issue has fallen off the radar screen and that, nationally, people are losing interest, saying this is a 'local' issue. We dispute that. This is a national problem and one that requires an intense and focused effort to fix," Redlener said. Redlener said it was "unacceptable" that more than two years families were still living in federally issued travel trailers or other temporary locations. "This is an American challenge that should have been met a long time ago but hasn't." Jolie said that in her travels she has seen many children who feel defeated. The difference here, she said, is that children "are feisty, fun and full of pride. They know where they're going and what they're going to do. It's that kind of spirit that will help everyone get through this." Pitt and Jolie have made New Orleans their home since the hurricanes and have been working to help the area recover. "We're focused on community building," Pitt said. "It's not just about homes. It's not just about building. It's about the lack of focus on education and health care too." Pitt has pledged more than $5 million to Make it Right, a project to rebuild 150 homes in the Katrina-devastated Lower 9th Ward, one of the city's most impoverished neighborhoods. It is amazingly impressive that Brangelina continue to make it a priority in their lives to devote as much time and energy as they can to doing as much charity work as possible. I find it very telling that the family, not only shows up at press conferences to talk the talk but they have decided to live in the effected area as well in order to be as close to the problem as possible in order to provide aid whenever they can. To me, this is the truest form of the Xmas spirit ... doing for others that cannot do for themselves out of love and compassion. It's really pretty awesome. [Source]

In other happy Brangelina news, little Shiloh Nouvel Jolie-Pitt resurfaced again (finally) this weekend:

Photo credit: INFdaily

This baby is hidden from sight so much that it makes one wonder what is really going on with her. I'm happy to see that she looks as cute as ever and seems to be doing just fine ... and back in the box she goes. [Source]

In other Xmas charity news, parents-to-be Nicole Richie and Joel Madden spent part of their holiday weekend chillin' with families in need ... which is exactly the reason the couple founded the Richie-Madden Children's Foundation. Here are a few pics of the happy couple at their merry holiday party:

Photo credit: Wireimage

In their first major charitable outreach since announcing the launch earlier this month of the Richie-Madden Children's Foundation, Nicole Richie and Joel Madden on Saturday hosted a holiday party for children and families from L.A. homeless programs. More than 200 children and their family members enjoyed a "winter wonderland" on the Paramount Studios lot featuring teddy bears, cookies, cupcakes, face-painting, clowns, holiday music, Santa Claus and his elves. Children, selected from the L.A. homeless program Beyond Shelter, were able to choose from a teddy bear mountain of 500 "Cuddle Cub" stuffed bears. "It was a no-brainer for us to pull this party together for them for the holidays," Richie, who is pregnant with her first child, said. "We want to do much more to address the homeless issue, especially where it puts children at risk. But for now, we can at least try to help them have a merry Christmas by giving them teddy bears and getting them fitted for shoes. That's something we can do right now, today." Yeah ... now this is really effing cool. It is clear that Nic/Joel are seriously committed to doing as much good as they can for as many needy folks as possible, I believe, in tribute to their yet unborn baby. What better way to honor and pay tribute to a new life borne of love than by helping others in need in any way possible. Incidentally, a little bird told me that Joel's little sister Sarah just recently gave birth to her first child, a girl, so there is much for the Madden-Richie family to celebrate this Xmas holiday. [Source]

In further happy news, Katherine Heigl and her long-time boyfriend Josh Kelley got themselves hitched yesterday afternoon:

It’s official: Katherine Heigl is a married woman! The Grey’s Anatomy star, 29, wed musician Josh Kelley, 27, in a black-tie ceremony Sunday afternoon at the Stein Eriksen Lodge in Deer Valley, Utah. Afterward, her Grey's costar T.R. Knight told "It was incredible. It was beautiful." Heigl's sister Meg told Us: "It was great." The 30-minute sunset ceremony, which ended shortly after 5 p.m., took place under a giant white tent in front of more than 100 guests, including Grey's costars Sandra Oh, Kate Walsh and Knight. The heated wedding tent, dramatically lit by blue-and-purple lighting and decorated in large white drapes, was filled with silver chairs covered with white cushions on a white carpet. The couple wed on an altar flanked by brass candleholders. Knight was to have served as a groomsman. Next on the agenda for the couple? "I'm super excited to start a family," Heigl recently told Extra. "I've always wanted a family, a large family. But I say that now!" Congrats all around ... I wish the happy couple all the happiness in the world. Katherine is a dope chick and I sincerely hope that she and Josh live happily ever after!! [Source]

It ain't all happy good times for all the celebs this Xmas. We already know that Kiefer Sutherland, who just celebrated his birthday while locked behind bars, will be spending his Xmas in the big house ... and now, it turns out, that former-Lost star Michelle Rodriguez will also be spending her Xmas locked up as well. Michelle, who was convicted on probation violation earlier this year due to her DUI and hit and run charges, surrendered herself for incarceration this weekend, prolly cuz she heard that the Lynwood Correctional Facility Xmas dinner is not-to-be-missed:

"Lost" star Michelle Rodriguez checked herself into Lynwood Jail Sunday afternoon to begin serving her 180 day jail sentence for violating her probation. The actress was on probation for a variety of crimes, including DUI and hit and run. She violated that probation when she failed to provide proof of completion of her community service, and when she consumed alcohol three times while wearing an alcohol monitoring device ... The judge who sentenced Rodriguez back in October specifically said that she was not be granted a work furlough, early release or home confinement and must remain in jail for the entire 180 days. Lynwood is the same jail in which Paris Hilton did her time earlier this year. It seems odd to me that Michelle would choose to begin serving her sentence a couple of days before Xmas when she prolly could've just as easily surrendered herself on December 26th. Tho, as I consider all the craziness that I have to endure tonight and tomorrow with family and friends ... maybe I see her point. Ah well ... Merry Xmas Michelle! I hope Lynwood treats ya well! [Source]

David Beckham surprised Spain with an Xmas gift of unparalleled import ... himself. Here are a couple pics of Becks chillin' in Madrid, Spain over the weekend:

Actually, Becks is back in Spain cuz he's following the Spice Girls around the world and the ladies are in Spain right now. Nonetheless, I think the people of Spain are very appreciative to have Becks back in their country irregardless of the reason. [Source]

Jessica Simpson opted out of attending the Dallas Cowboys vs. the Carolina Panthers in Charlotte, NC this weekend ... and the Cowboys won. Coincidence? I think not. Even tho Jess was a no-show, her smiling face was still in the crowd looking back at Dallas quarterback Tony Romo at every turn -- LOL:

Jessica Simpson knows when she's not wanted. The starlet was an apparent no-show at Saturday's Dallas Cowboys game against the Carolina Panthers in Charlotte, N.C. – a week after fans criticized her presence as a distraction to her boyfriend and Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo. Romo, 27, had a great game this time, rebounding from his Dec. 16 performance, when Simpson, in a pink Cowboys jersey, watched from a luxury box. After the 20-13 win over the Panthers, Romo told reporters that Simpson, 27, was indeed watching the game – and even hinted that she may have been in attendance. "I know she saw all of that tonight," Romo said after the game, when asked if Simpson had seen fans wearing masks of her face. "She was at the game tonight, so I don't know." He added, "I don't talk about my personal life." Heh ... if she was at the game she must've been locked inside a metal box or something ... it's the only way to keep her jinxiness contained. As for the fans who came out with Jessica Simpson masks ... I have to say kudos! That shizz is brills: Somewhere, Jessica Simpson was cheering on her man. The starlet may have been in the stadium Saturday night rooting on Dallas quarterback Tony Romo. Or she may have been hundreds of miles away from her new boyfriend. Either way, it didn't affect Romo's play ... He said after that his pop star girlfriend was in attendance, then played it coy when pressed for her location. "I don't talk about my personal life," he said. Unlike last week, when she cheered him on from a luxury box clad in a pink No. 9 jersey, Simpson was never spotted at this game. And even if she was here, he never let it bother him. Instead, he settled back in the pocket and aimed for the blonde hair -- no, he wasn't trying to pick up another girlfriend, and clearly, these fans with the flowing blonde hair weren't his type. Romo held steady in the pocket, tossed a sideline hitch to Terrell Owens and watched him sprint 10 yards in for the score. Nothing was distracting Romo this week. Not the controversy surrounding Simpson's appearance at his last game, not the three portly male Panthers fans wearing long blonde wigs in the end zone and not the smattering of Simpson masks fans waved in the stands. Ye gods, this stuff is priceless. See, all that boobage that Jessica Simpson has got going on comes with a price. You want to enjoy her goodies? You have to deal with the consequences. Who knows how long this relationship will last but one thing is for sure ... the intense spotlight on their togetherness will not end until they end. Hang on to those Jessica Simpson masks, y'all ... they're deffo gonna come in handy again. [Source, Source]

In response to the reports that Lindsay Lohan is being paid to walk around town holding packs of Ariva nicotine candy (or whatever the hell it is), Lindsay's people are denying the story altogether. Which, to me, seems pretty pointless since Lindsay is smoking as much as ever, clearly showing that the stop-smoking product doesn't work. Paparazzi advertising works both ways:

Reports that Lindsay Lohan endorses Ariva – the smoking cessation lozenge – are wrong, her rep tells "Lindsay has not been paid to endorse Ariva," her rep tells Us. "She is just a fan and is using it to help cut down her smoking as she is currently in the studio recording tracks for her 3rd album." The reports arose after Lohan, 21, had been photographed holding the product on multiple occasions. You can't blame a girl for trying, I guess. [Source]

And finally, here is a picture of what things were like here in the Midwest this weekend as the lovely Winter weather invaded to dust us with some lovely snow just in time to enjoy a White Xmas tomorrow:

Fierce winds knocked out power to many folks in the Detroit metro area and the temps. dropped considerably. Lord, I love being home :) I hope the weather is at least more temperate wherever you are in the world ... I hear David and his family are enjoying 90-degree sunny weather down in Florida right now. Merry Xmas, ya'll ... I hope Santa brings you everything you're hoping for this holiday season. [Source]

Les News:
Yesterday was my date day with Tracey and Zakiya but due to car problems (um, I lost the keys to my parent's Navigator and I'm kinda stuck until I get the spare set from them later on today) they had to come out to see me at Sarah and Mark's place. We had a blast tho ... ordered pizza, opened some gifts and just had a great time. Here are a few pics:

After the playing was finished, the ladies went home and Sarah and I went out to see National Treasure 2: Book of Secrets:

Generally, we both really liked the movie but it isn't quite as good as the original. When the treasure hunters are engaged in looking for clues, the movie gets really fun but it's the in-between stuff that is problematic. The witty banter isn't witty at all and the relationships seemed forced ... between pretty much everyone. There was a fun playfulness in the first movie ... which is lacking in the sequel. Also, Sarah and I spent a lot of the movie mentioning to each other the total implausibility of many of the plot points (breaking into the Queen's study at Buckingham Palace, kidnapping the President and he having no problem with it) which were too large to overlook. I realize that you have to suspend belief when at the movies ... but a good movie never makes the need arise ... you just go with the flow and believe. In the end, tho, the heart of the movie is still in place and we liked it. I just know that I won't be watching it over and over and over (and over) again like I did/do with the first movie.

Tonight I'm spending Xmas Eve with my parent's and hopefully with my friends afterwards ... I hope all y'all have a very happy holidays! XOXO I'm out.