Truly Julie is on a boat! (SNL reference)So, I’m decked out in my nautical stripes, sipping rosé, giggling like a dolphin (as usual) and feeling pretty lucky to have friends who own a gorgeous sailboat when (insert dramatic, ominous music…Duhn Duhn Daaaaaaahn) motion sickness sets in. Yeah…I was THAT girl. I even took medication and I was still staring at the horizon for my dear life. Any who…I made a strong recovery after an hour and the rest of the trip was, pun intended, smooth sailing. The fun company…good food…a spotting of a dolphin…glorious views of Malibu all rocked! And I don’t mean in the sea sickness way:)
Truly Julie paddle boarding with the ladies in Venice!
I’ve moved about 20 times in my life. The good that comes out of being a modern day gypsy is you learn to adapt and assimilate to your new environment: you don’t sink…you float! I’d say I’m adjusting to Cali life rather well…wouldn’t you? Peace, love and sunshine! **Fashion front: Truly Julie’s wetsuit by Cynthia Rowley for Roxy.
Truly Julie at Fiesta Broadway 2013 with her Good Day LA/Fox 11 Morning News family! From the left: Araksya Karapetyan, Steve Edwards, Bob Decastro, Julie Chang & Lisa Breckenridge.I’m still blown away by the remarkable turnout at Fiesta Broadway! Wow. Wow. Wow. Honestly, I thought I was going to have to jump up and down for you to notice us…after all, there were dozens and dozens of tents set up and swarms of people…but you not only recognized the Good Day LA gang, you waited in line to meet us in-person. So beyond tickled by your devotion. Thanks to all of you who came by…you really know how to make a team feel special. And I don’t wanna brag, but I think Good Day LA viewers are the cutest!! Look at these two who stopped by for an autograph! I die! Two great moments you didn’t see today on TV or through my pictures…Steve Edwards and Lisa Breck arguing over directions like an old married couple while we carpooled to the event (we all sang the Beatles “Across the Universe” on the returning ride…so it all balanced out with our Kumbaya moment). People literally crying tears of joy meeting Steve. He’s such a legend…and I’m lucky to be able to learn from him everyday.
It’s back…Truly Julie segments!!I first launched the Truly Julie franchise in New York at WPIX-CW 11, gosh, about 8 years ago! The morning show TV segments started off randomly. It would air once every few weeks. But with higher viewership/ratings, it eventually aired twice a week for about 3 years. From food, fashion, culture, travel, entertainment, human interest, etc., the goal of each Truly Julie segment was to showcase anything fun under the sun (with a strong touch of my wackiness). For example, I flew all the way to the tiny South Korean Island of Jeju to go deep sea diving with Haenyeos…I entered competitions for double-dutch jump roping and break dancing…I trained for the NYC marathon with the world’s fastest blind marathoner…I cooked with the finest chefs and ate the most exotic foods such as a giant scorpion and a live squid (with moving tentacles!) and the list goes on. When I switched jobs and moved over to WNYW, Fox 5 New York, I put Truly Julie on hiatus. But I tell you what, the viewers from those original “Changsta Gangsta” days have stayed with me! And if this is you: THANK YOU. It’s been about 5 years since I last aired a Truly Julie story in NYC and till this day, when I walk down the streets of the Big Apple, a few people will still yell, “Hey, it’s Truly Julie!”. I rarely hear folks call me Julie Chang…it’s almost always, “Truly Julie”. The success of Truly Julie and loyalty from so many viewers inspired the name of this blog! So with that..I felt it was only natural for me to bring Truly Julie back…but this time in LA!! If the goal is to feature things that are fun in the sun…um…where else is more fitting than Southern California??! I’m fortunate that the folks at Fox 11 LA share my vision. Slowly but surely we are getting Truly Julie back up and running. You can catch it/me every Sunday, around 10:30PM, somedays on Good Day LA & always online. Your’s Truly, Julie
Truly Julie with one of her favorite “bandmates” Jacqui Rosshandler! (It all started here)
When I commit to something…I’m in a 1000%. When I moved to LA from New York, I knew there were a few must-do’s to expedite my Angeleno status. Beach pad: check. California
driver’s license: check. Pink’s Hot Dogs: check. Cabo trip: check. Paddle boarding: check. Parking ticket: check. Tattoo: NO WAY (I’m too fickle with trends and I’m a scaredy cat)! And of course, I had to experience Coachella. Done! Don’t I look more LaLaLand after this weekend??! It’s probably the prematurely aging ritual called tanning that I actively took part in at pre-Coachella pool parties this past weekend. Coachella is sort of like Disneyland for adults. Every corner is fun, fun, fun…but all of it is a bit forced and too well manicured for it to be a Woodstock-like festival. The fashion is crazy and wild, but you can tell folks have been planning these outfits for months. Everyone dances like they’re the biggest hobo free spirit, yet you know they spent at least $350 to get in, and even more $$$ for transportation, parking and to find housing near Indio. Much like Disney’s Space Mountain, the line for pricey drinks and food (the Kogi BBQ was life changing!) snakes around and around. Plus, the 30 check-points to just enter the venue truly tests one’s patience. And instead of Mickey and Minnie, at Coachella you spot celebrities everywhere! But the music (Violent Femmes were my fav!)… the perfect festival weather (sans the Sunday dust storm)…the supermodel looking party-goers at Neon Carnival…vibrant life everywhere…that’s why you do Coachella! Coach-hell-yeah!
Truly Julie splashing around in San Jose del Cabo, Mexico! Y lo sabes (And you know it)!! The hipsters I met in Cabo threw this winning phrase around left and right and after my 3-day trip to this Mexican gem, I get it! Between the easy flight (it’s just 2.5 hours from LA)…all the options to unwind and unplug…great culinary scene…and the perfect weather…Cabo is where it’s at. And all it takes is a few days if not hours for you to KNOW IT! I did the whole whistle-blowing-in-your-face-while-you-down-a-tequila-shot (s!) in Cancun, Cozumel, Acapulco and Puerto Vallarta. Um…I’m over that phase of my life. This go around, I enjoyed a long weekend in Mexico like a grown up. Don’t worry, I was still giggling like a school girl while galloping on a gorgeous horse up anddown a private beach…and while seeing dozens and dozens of mama and baby whales. However, I recharged on this trip as opposed to wrecking myself. I stayed at the El Ganzo hotel which is just 3 months old! Yes, it’s where Charlie Sheen was partying it up with LA mayor Villaraigosa a few weeks ago but! It’s not what you think. The hotel does boast a little rockstar flair with a recording studio underground…and a suite that was inspired by the Bowery Hotel in NYC, but for the most part (like 99%), the hotel is really laid back, unpretentious, and carries a modern comfort vibe. And since it’s so new (and still working out some service and wifi kinks, you can find great deals). I promise…I did not see a single Charlie Sheen-esque type or a “goddess” or Tiger Blood in its drink menu:) What I did see, though, was a pristine, charming marina (the largest private marina in Mexico!) right out my window, an awesome rooftop infinity pool (picture on the left), and lots of hidden areas to explore on beach cruisers such as the sculpture park and cactus nursery. Both are literally a 5 minute bike ride from the hotel but feels a world away. They have plans to host music/food & wine festivals in the sculpture park which would be perfect! Because let’s be honest…Coachella would be a lot better if there was a beach nearby. I also found two restaurants that I’ll be CRAVING!!! The little fish taco shack The Drunken Sailer (order the Taco Chino!)…and Flora’s Farm, which is so freshly farm-to-table that you actually sit touching distance from the crops. It was so delicioso that I went for dinner and the very next morning, returned for Sunday brunch (ridiculously good family style prix fix menu on Sundays) ! And to complete my replenishing, I got an hour massage at the uber serene and fancy Las Ventanas Resort. I highly recommend Martha…who had the hand strength of the Hulk. And it’s cool, they finish all of their massages with this bell ringing device that sits on your back. It reverberates your entire body while silencing your mind. That was one awesome birthday treat! So between the $5 taco lunch at The Drunken Sailer to the luxury spa pampering, I tapped a lot of pricing points and activities. And Holy guacamole! You really can ride into the sunset here. Arriba, arriba, andale, andale!!
If you’re eyeing this print, you can purchase Truly Julie’s “Smiling Eyes” here.
Dreams do come true!!! My first photo series is now available for your home/office/any space you wanna add a dash of culture! Some top things that make my heart smile: traveling, taking photographs, and spreading light to causes that are dear to me. Thanks to Hillary Thomas and her design team, I now have the chance to achieve that trifecta. Long story short…I met Hillary and her team when they were sprucing up my pad. They fell in love with my travel photography… and asked if I’d be willing to sell my “art work” on their website. After a loud shriek, I said YES…and added, only if it somehow helps the place that’s depicted in the photographs. I had my first gallery debut in New York last year with this portrait I took in Haiti and gave 100% of the proceeds right back Haiti. And ever since, I’ve been looking for similar opportunities. Voila! I introduce you to my “Desert Series”. Six snapshots I took throughout the beautiful country of Jordan. 15% of all proceeds will go towards the thousands of Syrian refugees who are now living in Jordan in conditions we can’t even fathom. Some are even desperate enough to use graves as shelter. I hope I can continue to bring far off places right into your homes…all the while helping a few folks along the way. Next series will be Ocean and it’ll help marine life! Prints start at $30.
Happy New Year, everyone! It’s time to saddle up and make 2013 OUR year. In fact…we have the choice to make each year, day, hour…our best! It’s all through the power of your perspective…and you choosing to steer your mind past obstacles, pitfalls, and negativity. The quote below has helped me through some of life’s bumpy rides. Furthermore, it’s inspired me to take the reigns…sit tight in the saddle…give a firm kick…and ride with conviction. I hope it’ll do the same for you. Into 2013 we go! Yeeeehaw!
Do the things you used to talk about doing but never did. Know when to let go and when to hold on tight. Stop rushing. Don’t be intimidated to say it like it is. Stop apologizing all the time. Learn to say no, so your yes has some oomph. Spend time with the friends who lift you up, and cut loose the ones who bring you down. Stop giving your power away. Be more concerned with being interested than being interesting. Be old enough to enjoy your freedom, and young enough to enjoy it. Finally…know who you are.
This entrance is money! Truly Julie at the famed “The Treasury” in Petra.
I’m so glad that I’m an obsessed photographer. When you feel the same level of excitement to take a picture of something as historic as the Petra monuments yet something as obscure as a lime-mint Jordan beverage…you really end up paying attention to so many more details. In my constant quest to find the perfect composition to snap…I discover the beauty in so many overlooked places, objects, and people. The ultimate reward of this is that I come home with loads of great stories. That’s what photos are to me…memorable tales that are most often remarkable. And that exactly how I would describe Petra, Jordan. REMARKABLE. It dates back to 400 BC; and with it’s massive size and dramatic sandstone entrance ways…it’s as jaw-dropping as seeing Times Square for the first time. Only here…you don’t need voltage for the wow factor. You’ve got thousands of years of history & thousands of candles.
Truly Julie striking a pose for Cosmopolitan Korea September 2012 issue.Fun. Fearless. And Female. I’ve trudged through many obstacles in this tough city we call New York in an effort to possess these attributes (the third one by default) and guess who noticed? Cosmo Magazine!! In the September 2012 Cosmo Korea issue, I’m featured as 1 of the 10 “powerful” Korean women in NYC. I’m not sure I agree or deserve the lofty title, but heck, put me Gucci head-to-toe…and I definitely feel…”powerful”! Thank you Cosmo Korea for the kind feature. I was mad I didn’t get to keep the clothes but once I got a hug from Elmo…I got over it:) Below is a very grainy scan of my photo in the issue. For better quality and also to see who else made the list, I hope y’all go pick up an issue while it’s still on stands. New Yorkers, I believe Korea Town on 32nd St. has copies.