Don’t call me yenta

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Jewish celebrity gossip roundup along with some colorful commentary by Cheryl Jacobs.

Don’t call me yenta

Who in Hollywood is celebrating Tu B’av this year?

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This blog has already touched on many lifecycle events— birth, marriage, death— and today’s post is about another lifecycle event: dating…and the downside of dating: breakups.

Yesterday was the Jewish holiday of Tu B'av, the Israeli version of Valentine’s Day. It seems only fitting that this yenta would spend the holiday of loooove thinking about young, Jewish, Hollywood couples.

Sad to say, but there aren’t many new hookups; instead, Hollywood's Jewish couples seem to just be breaking up.

Couples no longer celebrating Tu B’av:

I was sad when I heard that Zac Efron and Vanessa Hudgens called it quits. Not to go all tween-y (I swear I’ve never even seen the High School Musical movies), but I always had a soft spot in my heart for those two. High school sweethearts (well sort of), these nice Jewish kids met on a set and dated for a long time by Hollywood standards, five years!

The break up happened a while ago, but another celebrity couple I really rooted for were dancing with the stars pros Karina Smirnoff and Maksim Chmerkovskiy. Two good looking, talented Jews, does it get any better than that? Too bad there is no hope for them reconciling—she’s marrying a pro baseball player and Maks appeared on the Ukrainian version of The Bachelor.

Not going to lie, I’m pretty happy this one went bust: Scarlet Johansson and Sean Penn. No offense to Mr. Penn, but Scarlet, you really went from Ryan Reynolds to him? I know Ryan isn’t an MOT, but he’s hot and not 20 years your senior!

Love him or hate him, James Franco breaking up with his girlfriend of five years is sad news. Guess his crazy schedule finally took its toll on their relationship.

Many people considered the pairing of lead singer of the Counting Crows Adam Duritz, and the gal who played Christine in Phantom of the Opera, Emmy Rossum, a weird coupling, but actually both of them are Jews. These two became a pair after Emmy filed for divorce from her first husband music executive Justin Siegel. But they hit the skids and no longer remain a couple.

Couples still celebrating Tu B’av:

Speaking of The Bachelor, while this summer’s Bachelorette Ashley Herbert isn’t an MOT, her now fiancée JP Rosenbaum sure is and a very cute one at that! Ashley said in an interview last week with Reality TV World, “If he [JP] wants to raise our kids Jewish, then yeah, whatever you want. I'm very open and I'm not really set in anything, so whatever makes him happy makes me happy.” So this yenta gives these two her blessing…as a big fan of JP and his hotness, I wish them the best of luck as a couple!

Yep, they’re the only confirmed couple I can think of! Hollywood heartthrobs Jake Gyllenhaal, Jon Mayer, Jesse Eisenberg and lovely talented ladies Bar Refeali, Mila Kunis, Rachel Bilson, what’s the deal? Can I suggest some pairings? Just don’t call me yenta.

One last note… To end this blog on a more positive note, I'm going to include this bit of good celebrity news. A few weeks back Gwenyth Paltrow announced that she is now going to raise her children in the Jewish faith. Gwyneth discovered while appearing on the show, “Who Do You Think You Are,” that her ancestry on her dad’s side includes a notable line of Eastern European rabbis. This was a change of heart for the actress who once told The Daily Mail, “I don’t believe in religion. I believe in spirituality. Religion is the cause of all the problems in the world.” Glad to hear she’s re-embracing the faith and her ancestry! Her father would be proud. Welcome back to the tribe Gwenyth, Apple and Moses!

P.S. My apologies to new mommy Elizabeth Banks, didn’t mean to leave you and your bundle of joy out last week’s baby post.!

Who wore it best?

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Ralph Lauren's only daughter, Dylan Lauren, recently tied the knot to hedge fund founder Paul Arrouet. The news of her wedding is already a few weeks old, but photos of the dress and the story behind its creation have only recently surfaced.

Being the daughter of a fashion designing legend has always had some perks. Dylan has been on fashion’s best dressed lists for years - Us Magazine named her one of the Top 25 Most Stylish New Yorkers in 2007. But the dress is truly amazing.

Ralph and Dylan appeared on Oprah recently to talk about designing his daughter’s wedding dress. According to the Huffington Post he said, "I had to do something that was better than ever before . . . When you do something for your family or your daughter, I mean it's the only daughter I have - beautiful girl. I want to just give her something that she'd really treasure and give her something that would be really amazing. I want her to feel fantastic."

Ralph even went to acclaimed wedding dress designer Vera Wang for advice on the white silk tulle-and-duchess satin creation with a trumpet-flared cut. And Dylan was thrilled with the results, "It's really beautiful," she told Oprah. "I know that every bit of his energy and heart went into making sure that I liked it."

If only we were all lucky enough to have fashion designers for parents!

Dylan was certainly a beautiful bride, but she's not alone. There have many beautiful wedding dresses in the public eye lately. For my own enjoyment and for yours, I’ve included a couple more below.

While she’s obviously not an MOT (Member-of-the-Tribe), it would be unfair to write a blog post about gorgeous wedding dresses this year and not mention the new Duchess of Cambridge. The whole world gushed over her dress earlier this year, me included, and it was nothing short of spectacular. But to be honest with you (I can already picture the hate mail I’m going to get for saying this), it was only my second favorite. My top pick for recent celebrity wedding dresses has to go to the one inspired by another princess, Grace Kelly, and worn by Ivanka Trump. Like the Duchess of Cambridge (who needed sleeves on her dress for her wedding at Westminster Abbey), Ivanka wanted to cover up a bit for her Orthodox wedding and Vera Wang just nailed it with the results. There is a certain stereotype that Orthodox wedding dresses can look a little frumpy, Mayim Bialik I'm talking to you, but Ivanka’s dress just busts that stereotype to pieces. Of course it helps having Vera Wang custom design and create your dress.

So what do you think? Who was your favorite bride in recent memory? Tell me below, just don’t call me yenta.

There must be something in the Manischewitz

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Last week Hollywood actress Selma Blair popped, raising the number of Jewish celebrity babies born this summer to nine! By now everyone is well aware that Natalie Portman gave birth to a bouncing baby boy she named Aleph— the first letter in the Hebrew alphabet—but did you know she's part of a growing trend?

Let's recount all the summer baby blessings:

Alicia Silverstone: Cher from Clueless is all grown up and has been married to Christopher Jarecki since 2005. Back in May, they had their first child, a son named Bear Blu Jarecki. Silverstone blogged after the announcement, "We are all three in love!" the actress said. "I'm so grateful to this community for all the love, support, good wishes and happy vibes you've sent me during my pregnancy ... it has been wonderful. Thank you all!"

David Schwimmer: Ross Gellar, aka David Schwimmer, and his photographer wife Zoe Buckman just had their first baby girl, Cleo Buckman Scwimmer on May 8. David has a special place on this list as the only Jewish male celebrity to recently become a father.

Jennifer Connelly: Actress Jennifer Connelly met her husband Paul Bettany on the set of 2001's A Beautiful Mind for which she won an Oscar for Best Supporting Actress. Three kids and a decade later, Jennifer and Paul just gave birth to a baby girl named Agnes Lark on May 31.

Pink: Yes, the pop star who grew up Alecia Moore is, in fact, Jewish. Known for her pink hair, rebellious nature and musical chops, Pink isn't your typical Jewish girl. Nor does she plan to be a typical mother. Pink and her husband motocross racer Carey Hart welcomed baby girl Willow Sage Hart into the world on June 2. Soon after her birth, Pink tweeted, "We are ecstatic to welcome our new beautiful healthy happy baby girl…she's gorgeous, just like her daddy."

Natalie Portman: Last winter, when the gorgeous and talented academy award winning actress Natalie Portman announced not only that she was engaged, but also pregnant, Jewish boy's hearts everywhere broke— their dream girl was officially off the market. Soon to wed choreographer Benjamin Millipied, who she met on the set of the Black Swan, Portman is a first time mommy to Aleph, not Alef, who was born in the middle of June.

Maya Rudolph: Funny lady and recent star of the hit Bridesmaids, Maya Rudolph and hubby director Paul Thomas Anderson welcomed baby number three on July 3. They opted to wait to find out the sex and after two girls, Maya gave birth to a healthy baby boy they named Jack.

Kate Hudson: Daughter of Hollywood legend Goldie Hawn, Kate Hudson and her fiancée, muse frontman Mathew Bellamy, recently gave birth to baby boy Bingham "Bing" Hawn Bellamy. In homage to both sides of the new family, Bingham is Mathew's mother's maiden name while Hawn is of course, Goldie's last name.

Ivanka Trump: Donald Trump's daughter Ivanka Trump converted to Judaism before her marriage to Jared Kushner, owner of the New York Observer and an observant Jew. The pair recently welcomed their first daughter on July 17. The Donald was the first to announce the news, "I just left the hospital and the baby is beautiful," he said. "Ivanka's doing great. Arabella rose is the baby's name - I just found that out by the way."

Selma Blair: Rounding out this list is Selma Blair who just this past Monday gave birth to a baby boy named Arthur Bleick.

Phew, that's a lot of babies! Something must be in the manischewitz in Hollywood! And not to be outdone, Tori Spelling is currently pregnant with baby number three as are Grey's Anatomy star Eric Dane and his wife Rebecca Gayheart who are due with baby number two.

Am I missing any? Let me know in the comments below and I'll add them to the roundup.

Mazel Tov to all the new families! Just don't call me yenta.