Photo: Alexia's (flickr)

This week, our blogs traded New Year’s fashion tips,  dreamed up some  smartphone apps to make our lives a bit easier, and rooted for Viola Davis’ s Oscar chances.

  • As we swing into our fashion season (including our new Fashion Fridays), we were struck by this week’s collection of style tips at Fab Over 50. This  roundup of personal-care ideas for 2012 has plenty of variety, including  “Sick of having a ho-hum wardrobe and want to dress super stylish in 2012? Then check out these style tips from The Glam Gals at Fabulous Over 40!” Jackie Silver, from Aging Backwards, and Chicago hair expert Sanda Petrut answer the age-old question about what to do with day-old hair (DOH), and  Deb of No-Nonsense Beauty Blog looks into  exercise for firm upper arms.  Click over and you might discover some new e-mentors.
  • Do you have a list of pop-culture pet peeves centering around  the way women are portrayed? Alex Leo at the Hairpin certainly does, and has made a master list, The Seven People in The Entertainment Industry I’d Love to Meet.  Click over for the full list, which includes “the director who makes the generic karaoke music videos, usually featuring nature shots and bikini-clad ladies from the early ’80s, regardless of the lyrics or song tempo.” It’s snark, but compelling in its way. Click over, and then tell us in the Comments section if you have someone to add to her list.
  • Women’s Enews  has a commentary by one of WVFC’s BFFs: MORE Magazine contributing editor Suzanne Braun Levine, talking about how midlife relationships, can actually be better. ” I love my husband with more tolerance,” she writes. ” I love my children with less need to make everything work out for them. I love my mother with more understanding.” What Levine calls our “second adulthood’ has given us secrets, she adds, and she wonders if we don’t share how good it is for fear we’ll jinx it.
  • Our resident humorists Roz Warren and Janet Golden turned up in Newsworks.org, the web portal of Philadelphia’s NPR station WHYY, with their wish list for new smartphone apps to improve life in the City of Brotherly Love. But we think the apps they suggest could apply to us all, perhaps with some names changed.  For example, the PECO (Philadelphia Electric Company) app:  “The lite version allows you to turn down the heat so your bill will be affordable. The full version lets you roll back rates to 1999 levels.” For the local expressway: “Download the free version, and it’ll teach you relaxation exercises when you’re stuck in an interminable traffic jam. The full version would teach those exercises to everyone stranded during rush hour.” There’s much more—go look!
  • The Oscar nominations will be announced next week, which means every entertainment blog out there is busy speculating about them. And while we were happy for Meryl Streep’s win at the Golden Globes, we were also happy to hear a little love for Viola Davis’s performance in The Help from MSNBC and Rope of Silicon, whose Brad Brevet is betting/hoping for a Davis win: “I’ve been going back and forth between Viola Davis (The Help) and Meryl Streep (The Iron Lady) all awards season, but I have finally seen both performances and now think it’s Davis’ to lose.  Streep’s performance is solid and she’s able to capture Margaret Thatcher with brilliant makeup and mimicry, but…” Handicapping the chances and looking at all the precursor awards, the critic does worry that “Davis hasn’t won anything for The Help outside of ensemble wins. The door is open for a potential upset, but do you think the Academy will be the group to take the risk?” What do you think? Whatever happens, we agree that the clip below deserves a little awe.