Cheers! My Birthday Celebration with the Napa Valley Wine Country Tours

After losing my grandmother a few weeks before my birthday, I really needed to celebrate life. I know she would want me to do that. This year, I decided to ring in a new year of life in wine country. My soror traveled up from So Cal to visit. This would be her first time in Napa. I didn’t want to drive so instead, we bought bus tickets for the Napa Valley Wine Country Tours.

Let me tell you something, going on this bus tour was one of the BEST decisions I made. The Napa Valley Wine Country Tours bus isn’t just any bus. It’s a limo bus that looks like a VIP club lounge on wheels. We paid $119 for an 8-hour trip, visit to 4 wineries in Sonoma and Napa counties, continental breakfast and lunch. It was worth every penny. The tastings aren't covered in the bus fare, but they ran about $10-$25. Wineries won't charge you for tastings if you buy a bottle. I recommend this for tourists and any Bay Area locals who have folks visiting from out of town and want a short excursion to Nap…

BET Awards Actually Stepped It Up

Prince acknowledges the audience as he accepts the Lifetime Achievement award at the 2010 BET Awards in Los Angeles June 27, 2010. REUTERS/Mario <span class=
No little girls gyrating on stage. A host with class. Good artists. A decent tribute to Prince and Michael Jackson. Would you believe I'm talking about the BET Awards? Seriously, I am. This year Debra Lee and her BET crew spared us the usual annual buffoonery and actually gave the world a decent awards show. After that hot mess on a platter "show" we endured last year, that's the least they could do. I even understood the songs performed this year because they weren't bleeped out entirely. I had no expectations of watching the ENTIRE show and only tuned in for Prince and Kanye. I thought BET might clean it up this year because Queen Latifah hosted and since she's big in Hollywood, I didn't expect her to be a part of a foolishness.

Alicia Keys should've gotten the "Sexiest Pregnant Lady" award. The mommy-to-be looked stunning in a short fuchsia dress and her glowing skin. El Debarge performing twice was a great surprise! Kanye must still be trying to keep low after the Taylor Swift speech because you couldn't see his face during the whole performance. Smart move. Take not Chris Brown. Call me a dirty old woman
LOS ANGELES, CA -  JUNE 27: Musician Alicia Keys performs onstage during the 2010 BET  Awards held at the Shrine Auditorium on June 27, 2010 in Los Angeles,  California. (Photo by Frederick M. Brown/Getty Images)
but Drake looked like yummy cougar meat. Well actually call me a dirty old woman for thinking Taylor Lautner is hot. But if Larry King can do it, why not me?




Moving on...Tyrese epitomized the word "dreamy." He nailed Teddy Pendergrass' tribute with his rendition of "Close the Door." That performance right there will probably boost the world population by 5% nine months from now. Whew, it felt like the temperature in my apartment went up 10 degrees when Tyrese sang. Tyrese, please put out an R&B album. Puh-leeeezzzeee. Are those red panties I see in the picture below?



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LOS ANGELES, CA - JUNE 27: Actors <span class=
Girl didn't you fall in love with Larenz Tate all over again when he and Nia Long re-enacted a scene from Love Jones?

I'm the blues in your left thigh. Trying to be the funk in your right. Is that alright?

YES Larenz, that is alright with me!

What did you think of the Chris Brown tribute to MJ? My friends and I had a good debate on this one. I thought he did a good job until the end when he broke down while singing "Man in the Mirror" and couldn't finish the song. I'm not sure if those tears were for MJ or his career. The tribute was for MJ but it became all about Brown once he started the boo-hoos. That I didn't like. Some people are saying that was the best MJ tribute hands down. Others think it was a ploy to save his career. But I'm not sure about that. CB's career is in trouble and I think those tears were for real. The U.K. denying him a visa may have got to him. That's $$$ he's losing overseas. I'd be crying too. Breaking down may have helped him recoup some fans he lost. But if you read this blog you know Chris Brown isn't on my list of favorites. So moving on...

LinkAnd I'm still figuring out the Nicki Minaj mania. I like originality in artists. But with Manaj's bright wigs and sexy lyrics, sorry kids, looks like Lil' Kim back in her Junior Mafia days to me. Look at this video around 2:08. If you remember Puffy when he wore shiny suits then you know orange wigs are soooo 1996. And moving on again...
LOS ANGELES, CA - JUNE 27: Musician Nicki <span class=


The ladies gave Prince a fun tribute. Patti LaBelle killed it with "Purple Rain." My favorite new artist Janelle Monae got wild on "Let's Go Crazy." I loved how someone had to drag her off stage. Alicia Keys rolled around on the piano, 5 months pregnant and all. And were you mesmerized by the sista with the huge fro, Eperanza Spalding? Her voice is heavenly. I went to her website and she has an amazing story. She began studying music in college at 16. That's another CD I have to pick up.


The BET Awards was so tasteful I may actually watch it again next year. Too bad it took protesting outside of Debra Lee's home, ripping up the network on blogs and a decline in ratings for there to be some change

LOS ANGELES, CA - JUNE 27: Musicians Patti LaBelle, Janelle Monae and Esperanza Spalding perform a tribute to Prince during the 2010 BET Awards held at the Shrine Auditorium on June 27, 2010 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Frederick M. Brown/Getty Images)


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Comments

  1. It was decent but I am still mad I gave in watched. Lucky though because had I not I would have missed El DeBarge, C-Breezy, Tyrese and catwoman AKA ALicia Keyes.

    Peace, Love and Chocolate
    Tiffany

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  2. I was very impressed this year as well! I was actually in the audience so I was really hoping it was not a hot mess like last year, too. I went because I'm one of the biggest Prince fans ever and had to go see him live since he hasn't had a concert for me to go to in a while.

    There were a LOT of panties being held up for Tyrese but it was funny when gospel came on stage next they all seemed to have disappeared, lol!

    I enjoyed the MJ tribute and the Prince tribute and agree this award show was better than we've had in a while!

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