Stephen Rice, Mark Erwin, and I headed over to Matt McGinnis' annual Mellow Yellow benefit for LiveStrong. With an enormous selection of Texas-made wines and liquors, and delicious treats from caterer Suzanne Court, the party was a raging success, attracting notables such as Ed Bailey (Austin City Limits), Ed and Susan Auler (Fall Creek Vineyards), Master Sommelier (one of only two in Austin) Devon Broglie, DJ el john Selector, Scarlett Olson, and more. With a goal of raising $5,000, the host was pleasantly surprised when the event raised $6,000 for a worthy cause – regardless of what anyone's saying about Lance Armstrong. Stay tuned for the announcement of Matt's next Mellow Yellow party and see for yourself.
Last week's Beauty of Life brunch for Hospice Austin was perhaps one of the most unexpectedly enjoyable I've been to. For one thing, it was at the Hilton Austin instead of the Renaissance, which made it waaay more convenient for Jacki Oh and me, plus there was more room for vendor displays. Of course, Hospice Austin means a lot to me, and I've supported them since before my cancer diagnosis. Busy with my own collection for my fashion show for Hospice Austin, I almost didn't go, and planned to leave there early when I did. But this year, the feature speaker was Kathryn Stockett, author of The Help. She was so damned entertaining and irreverent that I banished the thought of leaving. I watched the Ladies Who Lunch blushing and giggling over Kathryn's bon mots about being Southern. And, just like in her book, she's got the South nailed. Mellifluous tones led from one story into another, and I just wanted to curl up at her feet and listen to her talk all day and all night. I did make a quick exit before the Q&A part, but heard later that Kathryn had to be escorted out through the adoring throngs of fans by Hospice's development director, Grace Washington. Good work, Hospice Austin.
Speaking of Hospice Austin, my fundraiser for them, Eleven Eleven: An Evening of Extraordinary Fashion happens Sunday, Nov. 11, at the Driskill and tickets are on sale now at hospiceaustinbenefit.ticketbud.com/eleveneleven2012. We've added the glorious Holly Mills-Gardner as our emcee, and have the trailblazing Avant Salon handling the hair, with makeup by the exquisitely glamorous Rochelle Rae, who will also walk the catwalk. In fact, the runway will be littered with local celebs all wearing Made In Heaven by Stephen MacMillan Moser. So many things are in the works that it's hard to see through to the end yet, but the first of my finale dresses is being worked on now and that's a tremendous relief. Naturally, when it feels like all is good and I'm on top of the world, I have to be brought down a notch. Things have been going swimmingly emotionally, physically, and socially, but I find that my diseased body is doing its best to slow me down. It just couldn't happen at a worse time for me, when it feels that I have so much riding on this show. I rest more often than usual, but finding the energy to complete the tasks that my mind sets for me is more difficult now, and I've found that I've had to cut back on the number of looks I intended to show. So many wonderful people have come forward to help me out and get this show to the runway, that I'm verklempt. The show will go on.
The Octopus Club's most beloved event, their annual OctoTea Dance, is happening this Sunday, Oct. 28, at the Mexican American Cultural Center. Good food, copious beverages, great company, and a wonderful cause add up to a helluva fundraiser. Details at www.octopusclub.org/OctoTea. Be there or be Cher.
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