So what can we expect tonight? Well, all of the housewives will get together for a little end of the summer party. We will also see Tamra Barneyand husband Simon Barney get into a rather big blowup, during which Tamra threatens divorce. As widely reported, the couple is now separated as Simon filed for divorce in December. Tamra is now dating Eddie Judge, a friend of Simon.
On the other side of town, Vicki appears to be in a much better place with her husband Donn. The gruesome twosome known as Lynne Curtin’s daughters show up drunk to the party, and Gretchen and Slade show up in coordinating outfits, cause their peers to speculate on whether or not they are getting married. A video preview is below.
Coming soon is also the two part reunion special set to air on Wednesday, March 10 and Thursday, March 11 at 9:00 p.m. ET/PT on Bravo.
The upcoming reunion will of-course feature new interviews with all the Housewives, but what is new this year will be the appearance of the significant others including Jim Bellino, Frank Curtin, Donn Gunvalson andSlade Smiley.
According to Gretchen, the men end up ganging up on Slade. Former housewife Jeana Keough will also appear on the reunion show.
The reunion will update us on the pending divorce of Tamra and Simon Barney. According to the press release, Tamra will boldly address the situation with raw honesty and emotion. Lynne will answer questions regarding the challenges she has faced with her teenage daughters throughout the season. The men also make an appearance and Slade uses the opportunity to give Vicki a piece of his mind. The two go at it in a verbal battle that has been brewing for years.
TELL US – WHAT ARE YOUR THOUGHTS ON THE SEASON FINALE? SEASON IN GENERAL?
Gretchen Rossihas been ordered to court to disclose her finances according to RadarOnline. This all has to do with Jay Photoglou of course, and the $18,900 he was awarded in legal fees connected to a restraining order case she filed against him last year.
A Newport Beach, California Judge ordered the Real Housewife of Orange County to appear in court March 10 to provide information about her finances and assets.
Which brings us to Gretchen’s new interview with the LA Times, during which she opens up about her financial situation, more importantly sets the record straight on the $2.5 million her deceased fiance Jeff Beitzel left her in his will. While Gretchen admits she was left $2.5 mil by Jeff, she also insists she has yet to receive the money as Jeff’s estate is in a deficit.
Gretchen also discusses her never-ending feud with Tamra Barney, as well as where they stand today. She also talks Slade, the whole Alexa Curtin ordeal and how she deals with the negativity that comes with being on the show. What she doesn’t talk about however is Jay.
Excerpts from Gretchen’s interview below -
It was hard to track you down. You’re a busy gal. What are you working on right now?
Oh, gosh. If I told you, you’d be worn out by the time we were done.
Maybe you should tell Vicki [Gunvalson]…
That’s so true. I should call Vicki up and say, “Come spend a day with me and let’s have a little chitty-chat about what I really do.”
Right now, at this given moment, the last week has just been kind of crunch time for my makeup line (Gretchen Christine Beaute) that I’m launching.
And we see that you’re not rolling in the dough — as some suspected — after Jeff’s death.
Everybody had this misconception that I was with Jeff for his money. And that Jeff had millions and millions of dollars and … he didn’t; meaning right now his estate is in the deficit. It really was never information that I thought was appropriate to share but, unfortunately, when his will gets released to the public and everyone is reading it and saying he left me $2.5 million — well, he did. The problem is, is that if he doesn’t have $2.5 million to give me — you know, his estate doesn’t have it because it’s in the deficit — I’m not going to get it. If somebody doesn’t have the money, it really doesn’t matter. That’s where I think the misconception comes in. Everybody thinks I got left millions of dollars — which I did — but I have not received it. The thing, too, is that I never saw Jeff’s money as my money. It was always nice to be in a relationship with someone who was well off at the time that we were dating; I was spoiled rotten, yes. And I had a great lifestyle with him … but I also made my own money and the show really didn’t show that side of me. They didn’t show me as the entrepreneur that I was.
So how did you get involved? Did you audition?
For me, it was a different scenario. I was at a girlfriend’s party down at a restaurant here in Newport. Jo [De la Rosa] and Slade [Smiley] were actually sitting across the table from me at this party and I was being my crazy, flamboyant, obnoxious self and they started whispering to each other. I was like, “Are you guys talking crap about me?” — teasing them. They were like, “No, but you’re perfect for the show.” I was like, “Perfect for what show?” Cause they hadn’t been on for a couple of years so I wasn’t really sure what they were talking about. And they said I’d be perfect for “Housewives.” I was like, “You guys are smoking crack. I’m not doing that.” Slade kept insisting.
The next morning, I get a phone call from the casting agent at 7 a.m.; she said, “I hear you’re perfect.” It took a whole day of phone calls back and forth for them to even convince me. It really came down to me sitting down with Jeff. He was the one who convinced me to do that. I think the reason for that was that at that point, we had been in and out of the hospital for the last three or four months. We were right at a point where we thought we would get told he was going into remission. He was like, “You know, honey” — cause I had actually been approached three other times to do reality shows; I just turned them down because it wasn’t something I wanted to do. He just said, “Honey, you keep getting these opportunities. Maybe there’s something in the universe telling you to do this. And I’m really kind of sick of everything, everyday being about cancer. This sounds like fun.”
I think he saw it as an opportunity to travel and have an excuse to go do things. So he was the ultimate reason I ended up doing the show.
The rift seems to now center on this blog entry you wrote. Tamra [Barney] wants you to take it down, but you refuse. Can you talk a little bit about why?
I’m not going to take it down. There were so many things that Tamra put out there to the press and the show that were contradictory or that were lies. All those things are out in cyberspace forever and ever. So as soon as she can figure out a way to get all those things taken down, then I’ll be happy to take it down. But as long as those things are out there, the blog is my only source of truth and my only source of getting what really happened out there. I was rather taken aback by her because I believed she was my friend all season, and when she attacked me at the reunion show I was like, ‘Where in the hell did this come from?” So I wanted to clear the air up.
So are you guys still somewhat friendly? I mean, we see that you do have fun when you’re in a group setting. Have you reached out to her since news of her divorce?
No. Tamra and I don’t talk. We’re not girlfriends. We don’t call each other and say, “Let’s go hang out and have coffee.” I never really had problems with Tamra. I always liked Tamra; I got along with her and I thought she was funny and I thought our personalities were very similar. I liked her. But you just know when there’s poisonous people in your life and you know when people are trying to pull wool over your eyes and, for me, she’s one of those people. She might not be that way with other people, but she is with me. She is someone that I work with and someone I will be cordial with. And we’ll have a good time. The whole situation with the divorce and stuff … after the way she treated me after Jeff passed away, I don’t necessarily see myself calling her up and saying, “Hey, how ya doing?” Cause of the way she treated me. I’m a big believer in treating people the way they treat you.
Gretchen does not hold back as she tells the mag she suspects the Barneys impending divorce might be solely for publicity. “…I guess well have to see if it’s really true,” Gretchen tells OK! of Tamra’s divorce, “because I wouldn’t be surprised if we see them next year back together and this was a whole publicity stunt.”
Gretchen, however goes on to wish her co-star well, you know just in case the divorce is really real and stuff. “I think divorce is a horrible thing for anybody and I pray that her kids can make it through, but at the same time… But if it is real I hope that they can get through it, but I just hope they are not trying to fool the world,” Gretchen adds.
Gretchen, 32, has decided its better too keep her distance from the rest of the housewives with the exception of Alexis.
“I chose to keep positive people in my life that are uplifting and those girls, except Alexis, aren’t like that and I really don’t have an ill word to speak about them. They are who they are and their true colors show and I just don’t care to really talk one way or the other about them,” says Gretchen.
Critisism about her relationship with boyfriend Slade Smileyand his parenting skills, is something Gretchen does not understand.
“It’s been really frustrating lately because people have so many negative things to say about him and it’s hard for me because he is one of the most amazing men I have ever met,” Gretchen gushes to OK!, “And it bothers me that the women have a comment about his children or how he is as a father when they have never even seen him around his children and they don’t know anything about the situation. It’s very ignorant…”
When her new music career is not keeping her busy, Gretchen spends her free time working on her new beauty line – Gretchen Christine Beaute, and she also reveals her hopes of being a mom someday saying, “I want to have kids of my own!”
Alongside the duo was Slade’s son, Grayson Smiley, who has been fighting inoperable brain cancer since preschool. According to Bauer-Griffin, the couple first hit up a CVS Pharmacy and then grabbed hotdogs at Wienerschnitzel on January 10, 2010 in Los Angeles, California.
Slade has been accused in the past of failing to spend enough time with his son. Must say Gretchen and Slade are getting better at making their staged paparazzi photos look more “candid.”
Jim Bellino and Simon Barney both showed up on the trip after they repeatedly said their wives are not allowed to go on trips without them. Alexis Bellino and Tamra Barney both seemed to be okay with this, much to Vicki’s dismay. Vicki even refused to attend any events that the husbands, and Slade Smiley showed up to.
The ladies have now taken to their Bravo blogs to speak out on Floridagate. -
Here’s what Tamra Sue had to say:
“OK, so the guys went … get over it! The girls spent so much time together the only thing left was sleeping together and that wasn’t going to happen! The guys going all started with Simon, Jim Alexis, and I talking. As married couples with small kids it is very seldom that we take trips alone, together or apart. We thought it would be fun if the guys came and did guy things while the girls did their thing. So that is exactly what happened. The girls spent 80% of the time filming doing fabulous things; we even took a water taxi and went shopping downtown. The guys went golfing, worked out, and hung out by the pool. Everybody was happy … or so I thought. The last night we were there we went on the sunset cruise after our shopping trip. We thought it would be nice to have the guys there. I didn’t think for a second that Vicki would have a problem with it. I felt really bad when I saw how upset she was, but later found out that she had friends in town and went out to dinner with them.”
Alexis share her thoughts as well:
I’m not quite sure why Vicki was so upset about the boys coming on the trip to Florida. To be honest, she never even saw them until after hours …which was fine with me. The girls trip was never presented to me as a ‘GIRLS ONLY’ trip. I never received the memo: “NO MEN ALLOWED.” I would have laughed had she stated that to me. Nor did she pay for our trip, which would have given her more of a right to assign rules. I would not go somewhere that had certain ‘rules’ in advance, like your husband is not allowed. Not to mention the fact that Jim and Simon invited Donn to join them. So it was never a question of Vicki not mentioning to Donn to come along. What really strikes me as shocking is the fact that Vicki did not want to join us on the fabulous yacht cruise because she was going to feel like a third wheel, but yet she wound up going out that night with another couple, thus being a third wheel. It just doesn’t quite register with me … it doesn’t make sense. It may be a little hypocritical.
Vicki gives he side of the story:
When we initially planned for the trip to be a “girls” trip, it was planned during the week and I thought really nothing of it that the guys weren’t invited. I had no idea it was going to turn into such a problem with the men. I had just finished a week in West Palm Beach for an insurance conference and thought it would be great to extend it for a few days and have the girls come down to join me in Ft. Lauderdale. Due to the fact it was during the week, Donn was fine with me continuing my stay for a few more days and wasn’t planning on taking time off of work to meet me. When I found out Simon and Jim were coming I thought, ‘Well, then it’s not a girls trip if the guys are joining us’ and I wondered how it would turn out. Even though Donn wasn’t planning on going, he told me to go anyways and to have a great time. In hindsight, once I knew the dynamics were changing with Simon and Jim coming, I probably should have listened to my gut and just gone home and not stayed for the few extra days. Simon and I had already had a few conflicts this summer, and I felt very uncomfortable being around him and really didn’t want to see him.
Never thought I would see the day I side with Vicki but I actually agree with her on this. There is something very controlling and slightly creepy about the men saying their wives are not allowed to go on trips without them. It seemed to come of a place of distrust rather than a place of wanting to spend more time with their spouses. I guess this is kinda understandable considering Alexis allegedly cheated on her first husband with a wealthier older man, perhaps Jim does not want history to repeat itself.
I don’t see the problem with the women having a girls trip, and having the husbands there would of course change the dynamics of the trip. Perhaps Vicki could have handled the whole thing better and just sucked it up, but apparently she and Simon had gotten into an argument off camera, and she did not feel comfortable being around Simon.
TELL US – WHAT DID YOU THINK OF THIS EPISODE? ARE YOU TEAM VICKI OR TEAM TAMRA/ALEXIS?
This season has chronicled the housewives’ financial struggles whether small or major. Gretchen Rossi had a garage sale, Jeana Keough went shopping with her daughter at H&M, Tamra Barney is now doing her own housework, and coming up soon will be the eviction of Lynne Curtin. Off camera, Slade Smiley’s financial difficulty is also common knowledge since the publication of a report showing he owes over $80,000 in back child support.
All of the above is a drastic turn from what we’re used to seeing from the OC Housewives. Long gone are the days of buying yatches, diamond rolexes and harleys. A new article from the Huffington Post details the financial woes of the housewives. “All of them have been very much affected by the economic situation,” explains the show’s executive producer, Douglas Ross.
Ross discusses the upcoming episode that will show Lynne’s family being evicted. “We try to treat it as gently but as honestly as we can,” Ross says. “We happened to have been there with our cameras … as part of our normal schedule when they were served the eviction notice. It’s one of those great reality TV moments that happened to be caught because we were in the right place at the right time.”
And though money can be a sensitive issue, the OC housewives don’t seem to mind sharing their struggles with millions of viewers. “It helps people across the nation because they realize it’s not just them,” says Jeana. “I’m pretty open. … There’s not too much I’ll hide. It was difficult for my husband … but the world’s in this place right now and I think people are going to relate to it,” adds Tamra.
Though the housewives get paid to appear on the show, Jeana says the amount (rumored to be $100,000 per housewife) is not enough to support a family. “It’s so minimal. It’s not enough to make your house payments. It’s more like a location fee to keep your house clean.”
Vicky Gunvalsonis however one of the luckier housewives as her insurance business is booming more than ever. “When I first started (on the show), I was working out of the house with two employees and now I have a huge office with 10 employees, 700 agents out in the field,” says Vicki, who plans to retire comfortably at age 55. Interestingly, the HuffingtonPost article quotes Vicki as saying she is 42 years old, which is false as she is 47.
Despite her very public eviction, Lynne says things are looking up for she and her family as she predicts they will be able to build a house next year. “My husband is a builder in Southern California. It’s not like he doesn’t try. He’s not sitting at home watching TV. He is going out and making an effort. … I’ve been married for 20 years. … We’ve had the high life we’ve had the low life. It’s just reality.”
The Real Housewives of Orange County’sGretchen Rossi and boyfriend Slade Smileytook Slade’s son Grayson Alexander Arroyo-Smiley Christmas shopping in Hollywood, CA.
As we have previously reported, little Grayson suffers from an inoperable brain tumor. You can read about Grayson and his mom (Michelle Arroyo) at Amazing Gray.
It was reported last month that Slade owes over $80,000 in back child support to Grayson’s mom, who also accused Slade of not spending enough time with his sick son. But I’m certain these non staged paparazzi photos has anything to do with that story.
Tamra wanted Gretchen to admit to wrongdoing, and Gretchen wanted an apology from Tamra. In a new interview with RadarOnline, Tamra opens up a new can of worms as she once again bashes Gretchen and her boyfriend, Slade Smiley.
Tamra refers to Slade as a “douche bag”, and referred to Gretchen as “always lying,” especially about the allegations that she was cheating on her dying fiancé Jeff Bietzel. Tamra then upped the ante by telling RadarOnline: “I challenge you, Gretchen Christine Rossi for a lie detector test. If you pass, I will forgive you.”
The subject then turned to new housewife, Alexis Bellino, whom Tamra claims to actually like. “I like Alexis,” Tamra said. “I think so far she’s a really good match with us, she seems to be very sweet.”
Really hope Tamra Sue’s getting paid for these interviews, it just seems rather catty and unnecessary.
TELL US – WHAT ARE YOUR THOUGHTS ON THIS STORY AND LAST NIGHT’S EPISODE OF THE OC HOUSEWIVES? ARE SIMON AND JIM CONTROLLING HUSBANDS?