$75 Pink Blush Gift Certificate Giveaway!

I’m crazy excited to announce a new giveaway today from the lovely folks at Pink Blush and Pink Blush Maternity!  Absolutely gorgeous dresses, gowns,and clothing that you HAVE to check out!  Before I get to the giveaway, I have to do a review of the lovely dresses that they sent me.  After that, I’ll tell you how you can get your hot little hands on this gift certificate and win $75 worth of amazing Pink Blush clothing of your own!
WIN PINK BLUSH

Pink Blush offers both a regular and maternity clothing line.  Truth be told, I often look at maternity pieces because of my poochy belly.  As a post-op gastric bypass patient who has never had any reconstructive surgery, a lot of my extra weight is in my midsection.  I tend to be drawn to empire-waist styles, and so sometimes maternity-styles are a really good fit for me as long as they don’t really accentuate the belly area and drape more like an empire waist.  Pink Blush has a really great selection of just that type of style for me, so I had a HUGE selection to look from:  both their regular and maternity line.  I was like a kid in a candy store on their website!

The first gown I selected to review was the absolutely GORGEOUS “Red Lace Accent Chiffon Evening Gown.”  I cannot tell you how many compliments I got on this gown!  I wore this to one of my performances that was outdoors on a breezy night, and it just draped and moved so beautifully in the wind:

ME SINGING

 

The next dress I reviewed was a more casual one, but I’m already LIVING IN IT.  It’s so unbelievably comfortable, I never want to take it off!  It’s the “Olive Sleeveless Pocket Maxi Dress” and if this came in a hundred colors, I’d buy every single one of them!

First, the fabric is SUPER-SOFT.  Next, I’m in LOVE with the pockets. I just think that such a small detail makes such a HUGE difference in the look of this dress, and the same with the small slits on the side of the dress.  It’s uber-comfortable, and for such a casual dress, it looks so chic’ and trendy.  I’m seriously in love with this one:

Ok, so now on to the good stuff:  how do you win.  I know you’re dying to know, right?

enter to win

To win, there’s one mandatory component, and several different ways to get entries!

First, the mandatory: You must follow both me and Pink Blush & Pink Blush Maternity on Instagram or on Facebook.  You have to be following the both of us on ONE of those platforms (preferably on Instagram).  You can find us both here:

Instagram:   Pink Blush ~  Pink Blush Maternity ~  Diva Taunia
Facebook:   Pink Blush ~  Pink Blush Maternity ~  Diva Taunia

Now here are the many different ways you can enter.  You can only do each of these ONCE, but you get one entry for each item that you complete!  Each of these will count as a raffle entry.  The contest starts today, on Wednesday, May 18th and ends on Sunday, May 22nd at NOON, PST.  Will announce the winner later that evening (Sunday May 22nd).  The winner will receive a $75 Gift Certificate to spend on either site:  Pink Blush or Pink Blush Maternity thanks to the very generous folks at Pink Blush!   Here are the ways that you can enter:

  1.  Leave a comment on TheDressAddict.com blog telling us what piece of clothing you love on Pink Blush!
  2. Leave a comment on the DivaTauniaBlog.com telling us what piece of clothing you love on Pink Blush!
  3. Leave a comment on the Instagram post (on @divataunia account) telling us that you’d love to win!
  4. Leave a comment on the Facebook post where you see this telling us that you’d love to win and BE SURE TO TAG PINK BLUSH!
  5. SHARE this post/blog on your Facebook wall (2 extra entries for this one)!
  6. Tag both @divataunia and @ShopPinkBlush or @PinkBlushMat on Twitter and tell us that you’d love to win!

Remember:  you can only do each of these things once, but you will get one raffle entry for every item that you complete!  Good luck to everyone, and many thanks to Alicia and Pink Blush for sponsoring such an amazing giveaway!!  xo

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MUSIC REVIEW: ERIK ODSELL

Searching_For_Lost_Boys_Island__album_cover

For the past couple weeks, I’ve had the pleasure of playing Erik Odsell‘s music on my radio show, The Backstage Pass Radio Program, and I have to admit: I’m becoming hooked.  It’s hard not to:  it’s great pop music with excellent songwriting, strong vocals, and fantastic production.  “Searching For Lost Boys Island” is an album definitely worth taking a listen to; a fine example of his strong songwriting, but furthermore, a showcase of his artistic pursuits and musical dreams since his youth.

erik_5
When I went to read Erik’s bio on his website, I was immediately struck by how beautiful his website is. Much like his music is aurally pleasing, his website is visually arresting with gorgeous pictures of him and melancholy landscapes.  None of it feels posed or trying to hard, it’s just really artistic and really lovely to look at.

Erik’s life has been surrounded by music, with a father who played piano and then growing up singing in choirs and playing piano and guitar himself. He became an accomplished songwriter, making a name for himself after being nominated for several European songwriting awards.  These experiences all come to fruition on his album “Searching For Lost Boys Island.”

The album opens with a song called “Waiting For Snowfall” which has almost a musical theatre vibe to it, but absolutely evokes a feeling of autumn and early winter from the opening notes.  It’s apparent from the very first notes that Erik is formidable at his craft and understands how to use music to create a mood, a feeling, and imagery.

Unapology” is easily one of  my favorite tracks on the album.  I’m not sure if this was intentional or not, but to me it has a nod to the 80s – as does Erik’s voice – and as a child of the 80s, this immediately draws me in.  What’s well done here is that is also has a subtle thumbing bass/percussion line in the background that would very easily translate into a techno dance track for the clubs.

Come What May” showcases Erik’s higher range and falsetto as well as a more laid back acoustic pop-rock feel to his songwriting.  Truth be told, I want to steal this song and cover it (note to Erik, lol).  This is some seriously strong songwriting and outstanding song studio production.

The title track of the album “Searching For Lost Boys Island” is just gorgeous. It starts off with some acoustic guitar and some lush vocals from Erik, and reminds us all to not forget the importance of pursuing your dreams:

“When you search for a dream
while you are still awake…

There is no disagree
It’s all so clear and plain to see
Those who aim for the stars
Are the only ones who actually
might go that far…”

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I’m looking forward to seeing and hearing what comes next for Erik.  If this debut album is any indication of things to come, there is a hell of a lot more great music to be made from this talented Swede.  Bravo, Erik!

Searching For Lost Boys Island is available for download at the following places:

ErikOdsell.com
Spotify
iTunes
Apple Music

DEARLY BELOVED, WE ARE GATHERED HERE TODAY…

PURPLE RAINI just don’t want to believe it’s true. I don’t know why, but Prince is one of those music legends that I somehow felt was never going to die – or was at least going to outlive me. I feel like a little bit of my youth died today and it’s incredibly sad. The music world lost an incredibly gift musician and songwriter, and I lost an icon that defined both my teenage years and influenced me musically.

Much will be written about his contributions to music, particularly about how he helped shaped the music scene of the 80s – when I grew up.  When Purple Rain came out, he invited us all to go crazy, and we did. The instant “Let’s Go Crazy” comes on the radio, I turn into a raving lunatic; dancing and singing and more likely looking like I’m convulsing than doing either of the other two.  But I don’t care.  That was the point. Throw caution to the wind and live your life and be silly and crazy.

Prince saw the world in vibrant colors, gems and stones. He was incredibly flamboyant – feminine in almost every way and most certainly in the way he dressed, but without a doubt the sexiest dude you’d ever seen.  He was tiny in stature in real life, but the most gigantic personality in everything he did: music, onstage, and on screen. Much like Michael Jackson, he was quiet and reserved when he spoke, but his onstage persona was huge and unbelievably dynamic and commanding.

He wrote so many amazing songs:  When Doves Cry, Darling Nikki (thank you for a funky time, Prince), Rasberry Beret, Kiss, U Got The Look, and my FAVORITE two Prince songs:  Baby I’m A Star and Purple Rain.  He also wrote for other artists too:  Manic Monday (The Bangles), Nothing Compares 2 U (Sinead O’Connor). He was crazy talented and wrote so many great songs and contributed so greatly to our contemporary music history.

I was so sad to hear of his passing today.  But one thing I know for sure:  the words of his song have never been more true than they are today.  Let’s not forget them: ♫

We’re all excited
But we don’t know why
Maybe it’s ’cause
We’re all gonna die

And when we do (When we do)
What’s it all for (What’s it all for)
You better live now
Before the grim reaper come knocking on your door

Tell me, are we gonna let the elevator bring us down
Oh, no let’s go!

Let’s go crazy
Let’s get nuts

Let’s go crazy!

SUNDAY SALE ON POSHMARK TODAY!

Just a little heads-up that I’m running a crazy 30% off sale on Poshmark today!

30 off SALE

In case you missed it yesterday, I posted a little “fashion show” video with a sampling of the items I have for sale on my Poshmark store at www.poshmark.com/closet/divataunia.
I think a lot of people think Poshmark might be one of those pyramid schemes that try to get you to join and sell their products or something like that, but it’s not.  It’s more like Ebay, but it’s an app that you use on your phone.  You can buy and/or sell just like Ebay. You just download the app and you either use it or don’t – completely up to you. There’s no charge or fee or anything like that.

When you sign up, you can use my code PAKEY can get $10 to spend instantly.  That’s it. Super-easy.  Nothing sketchy.  :)

Here’s my “fashion show” video.  Take a look, and even if you don’t like what I’m selling, you can still use the $10 buckaroos and shop the other THOUSANDS of items for sale on there.  It’s crazy addictive.  lol  Have fun!

FASHION SHOW

BACKSTAGE PASS RADIO – TODAY @ NOON PST!

BACKSTAGE PASS
  www.backstagepassradio.com
Friday, 4/15/16 @ NOON, PST

On today’s program:

The Backstage Pass Radio Program is hosted by award-winning vocalist and trumpet player Diva Taunia, and can be heard on Fridays at NOON, PST at http://www.backstagepassradio.com.  The show is generously sponsored each week by our friends at Wellesse Liquid Vitamins and Supplements (www.wellesse.com), Daddy O’s Rockabilly Clothing (www.daddyos.com) and the Ontario Chaffey Showband. Don’t forget to tweet live during the show @divataunia!

On today’s program:

1. Justin Nathanielson with “Blue Sea”
2. Marquis Estelle with “Semantic Batons”
3. Michael Graves with “Straight Jacket”
4. Sarantos with “Dreamer”
5. Erik Odsell with “Unapology”
6. Erik Odsell with Come What May”
7. Dan King with “Peroxide Swing”
More about Diva Taunia at www.divataunia.comwww.divatauniablog.com, and www.instagram.com/divataunia !

TONIGHT! GERSHWIN CONCERT!

If you’re in the Ontario, CA area, I’d love to see you at this FREE CONCERT tonight at the Historic Gardiner Spring Auditorium!  I’ll be featured on vocals on a couple numbers and I’ll also be playing trumpet, but the real treat of this performance is Dr. Maria Perez on piano on Gershwin‘s masterpiece “Rhapsody in Blue.”  We’d love to have you in the audience!

GERSHWIN

CHICKEN & WAFFLES? CHWAFFLES (SPROUTS FARMERS MARKET STYLE!)

DISCLAIMER:  I am not even going to try and pretend this is healthy in any way – it’s not. But you know what it IS? Freakin’ DELICIOUS!  *AND* it’s slightly healthier than regular chicken and waffles and definitely way, way less cumbersome to make.  Now that I have that out of the way, I bring you…CHWAFFLES!

I went most of my adult life without ever having had chicken and waffles, but once I did it became very problematic for me because I crave it ALL.THE.TIME now.  There’s a few problems with that: 1) I don’t have a regular joint that I can just swing by and get it at and 2) Uh, I had weight loss surgery and I shouldn’t be swinging by a regular joint to have chicken and waffles, you know what I’m saying?  But still, every once in a while, I just really, really want some.  And thanks to my favorite little market on the planet, Sprouts Farmers Market, I can now get my fix at home every once in a great while.  I give you, CHWAFFLES:

CHWAFFLES WTEXT

These are waffle-battered chicken breasts and they are so unbelievably easy to make and absolutely delicious that you will be working overtime at the gym so that you can have these regularly on your menu.  The ingredients come from Sprouts Farmers Market and I really believe they are key, but if you don’t have a Sprouts near you, I’m sure you can improvise. Two ingredients at the store, and everything else you’ll have at home:

SPROUTS INGREDIENTS_text

And because the waffle is the star of the show here, let me give you a close-up of what you’re looking for.  These are individually wrapped and can usually be found in a little basket with other baked goods in the baked goods and bread section of the store.  They’re generally pretty cheap, about $1.00 a piece and you’ll need about 1 per chicken breast. (Sidenote:  they’re soft and yummy and delicious just as a pastry snack on their own!)

WAFFLE

I actually just found the website for EuroClassic as well and it’s HERE.  It doesn’t look like you can order directly from them (I totally would, these things ROCK), but you can contact them and maybe they can arrange a shipment for you, who knows?

In a pan, get your oil hot.  I like to use vegetable or canola oil because of it’s super-mild flavor and it doesn’t overpower the awesome flavor of these rockin’ waffles.  I also like to add a scoop or coconut oil for flavoring as well, but note that coconut oil has a very low smoke point and burns easily, so you really have to keep an eye on it. If you’re not used to frying with it, I’d skip it and just stick with with canola and/or veggie oil.  Make sure it’s good and hot!

In a food processor,  grind up the waffles.  I don’t like to have it reduced to complete breadcrumbs. I actually like somebigger chunks in there too for texture, but that’s completely up to you.  Add the crumbs to your breading station.

Next, set up your breading station.  I actually photographed this backwards, like a dope. lol So just be aware that the order is flour-egg dip – waffle coating. Pat your chicken breast dry, and get to it!  Make sure you coat super-well with the waffle mixture.  You will probably have to smoosh it on there a bit with your hands to stick, but the crumbs are moist, so it should stick to itself a bit.

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Next, add to hot oil and fry (I cook on 4 out of 6 on high temp)for about 4 minutes on each side until golden brown.  Watch to make sure it doesn’t burn!

Finished product is your CHWAFFLES:

CHWAFFLES WTEXT

You can add a little syrup for dipping if you want, but honestly…you don’t even need it.  The waffles have a little syrupy flavor added already, so these are delicious as-is!

If you make these, please let me know what you think!  :)