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So many new films and series premiering today, books of all genres – a mystery set in the French alps, a cookbook by Thomas Keller, a vintage cosy British series set in the early 20th century, a book about the brain to inspire a more fulfilling life, Murdoch Mysteries returns, a unique new tote, chic bedroom décor and much, much more.
While released in 2018, I thought it was worth sharing J.F. Benoist’s highly recommended book about the power of the unconscious mind if we let it remain so, and when we do not, but instead change the programming we have accepted, create a deep sustaining joy in our lives. Acknowledging the detrimental effects that the pattern of negative self-talk can bring into our lives – with ourselves and others – is a pattern that can be broken, and when we do, our quality of life improves significantly. Addicted to the Monkey Mind shares actionable steps to shift away from self-sabotaging thinking and live with more contentment.
—Dream, Plan & Go: A Travel Guide to Inspire Your Independent Adventure by Rachel McMillan
When travel becomes available, no doubt the skies and trains will be full, so why not begin to plan that dream of a trip you have been thinking about over these past ten months. And, if you like me, travel alone often or are considering traveling alone, but have never done so, be sure to pick up Rachel McMillan’s new book (released in May 2020) for helpful and inspiring tips to provide you with a peace of mind that indeed independent travel is a must-do.
“A travel memoir and guidebook, readers will receive practical advice on how to stay safe while traveling single, create a budget, prepare and pack efficiently, and much more. Chapter by chapter, you’ll encounter creative ideas for excursions as well as historical insights into some of the most fascinating destinations around the globe.” So why not, dare to travel and enjoy doing so all in your own company?
—Range: Why Generalists Triumph in a Specialized World by David Epstein
A New York Times bestseller, recommended by Bill Gates and shortlisted for the Financial Times Best Business Book of the Year, Range is a book to explore if you are looking to 2021 with change in your professional horizon. “David Epstein examined the world’s most successful athletes, artists, musicians, inventors, forecasters and scientists. He discovered that in most fields—especially those that are complex and unpredictable—generalists, not specialists, are primed to excel. Generalists often find their path late, and they juggle many interests rather than focusing on one. They’re also more creative, more agile, and able to make connections their more specialized peers can’t see.” So, if you think it is too late to dive into a dream career after having chosen a different path thus far in your life, think again! And pick up Epstein’s book to not only boost your confidence, but reassure yourself that exploring a new path may be exactly where you will excel.
—Yes To Life: In Spite of Everything by Viktor E. Frankl
If you read no other book from today’s list, read Yes To Life. From international bestselling author Viktor E. Frankl, an Austrian-Hungarian who survived imprisonment at Auschwitz, released for the first time in English this past spring to great critical acclaim, Yes To Life shares author, neurologist and psychiatrist “Frankl’s series of public lectures given in Vienna eleven months after he was liberated from the Nazi concentration camps. Becoming world famous, Frankl explained his central thoughts on meaning, resilience, and the importance of embracing life even in the face of great adversity.” At the heart of what the world of psychiatry calls the third school following Freud and Adler is Frankl’s theory that “the primary motivation of an individual is the search for meaning in life and that the primary purpose of psychotherapy should be to help the individual find that meaning.” A short book and a must-read.
Shonda Rhimes is bringing her eye for story-telling to Netflix in a new 19th century British set series Bridgerton. Inspired by Julia Quinn’s best selling novels, season one focuses on the eight siblings of the Bridgerton family who are looking for love and happiness in the high society of London. With classical attire and settings mixed with modern touches to draw a 21st century audience, Rhimes looks to have created a hit. Read her conversation with The New York Times here and check out the trailer below. Season 1 premieres today. Enjoy!
Late to the reminder about HBO Max’s mini-series Parade’s End, but I knew this series was one I wanted to share, Benedict Cumberbatch stars in a highly dramatic adaptation of Ford Madox Ford’s four-part novel series (published between 1924-1928) which has been hailed for decades as one of the best novels in English. “Celebrating the end of an era and the irrevocable destruction of the comfortable, predictable society that vanished during World War I,” Madox rawly shares the pain, the violence and the awakening to what might have forever been lost in English society. Have a look at the trailer below and find the entire series on HBO Max now.
—A Rogue of One’s Own (three part series) by Evie Dunmore
A League of Extraordinary Women is a three-part series written by Evie Dunmore receiving quite high praise for its depiction of Oxford Rebels that threaten to upend the British social order. The first two in the series have already been published and the third will be published next year. A Rogue of One’s Own (book 2) was just published this past September and tells the story of Lady Lucie. “She and her band of Oxford suffragists have finally scraped together enough capital to control one of London’s major publishing houses, with one purpose: to use it in a coup against Parliament . . . Lucie tempts Lord Ballantine (Tristan) like no other woman, burning him up with her fierceness and determination every time they clash. But as their battle of wills and words fans the flames of long-smoldering devotion, the silver-tongued seducer runs the risk of becoming caught in his own snare.” A fun read and a step back in British history. Looks like a wonderful way to slip away on a cozy evening.
—French Laundry, Per Se by Thomas Keller
Named Best Cookbook by Amazon and Barnes & Noble this year, Thomas Keller’s new kitchen resource for the daring and advanced cook is one to add to your library. Described as a masterclass in the state of the art of cooking, Keller’s celebrated restaurants—The French Laundry in Yountville, California, and per se, in New York City—are the muses for his new cookbook. Sharing “meticulously detailed recipes for 70 beloved dishes, including Smoked Sturgeon Rillettes on an Everything Bagel, ‘The Whole Bird,’ Tomato Consommé, Celery Root Pastrami, Steak and Potatoes, Peaches ’n’ Cream, Keller also includes within that 70, “40 recipes for the basics to elevate your home cooking.” That last description caught my attention immediately.
Currently just beginning the redecoration of my primary bedroom, I came across One Kings Lane’s A Curator’s Bedroom, and so many decor items caught my eye. The small touches in luxurious and high quality finishes make a lovely difference if thoughtfully and sparingly used. A lovely throw placed on a upholstered chair or bench, simple and luxurious.
Setting the mood with the right lighting, while along with bedside lamps is a must. Create a small sitting area away from the bed to invite you to not only sleep well in your bedroom but rest and relax as you either end the day, begin the day or transition into the latter half of the day . . . all with complementary lighting.
Directed by Patty Jenkins and a sequel to the 2017 box office hit Wonder Woman starring Gal Gidot, the story moves to 1984, decades after the events of World War I. Diana (Wonder Woman) works as a senior anthropologist at the Smithsonian Institute in Washington, D.C., specializing in the culture of ancient Mediterranean civilizations. Diana continues to fight crime as Wonder Woman, albeit while maintaining some anonymity. Check out the trailer below and begin streaming on HBO Max now. Not an HBO Max subscriber? Now is a great time to think about becoming one as HBO is offering a 20% discount (a savings of $70 off the a six-month pre-paid subscription).
Released today on Amazon Prime, set in Harlem in the 1950s, a young woman (Sylvie) means an aspiring saxophonist in her father’s record shop. Slip away in a film which transcends changing times, geography and professional success as their love affair changes their world. Check out the trailer below.
Let’s slip away to Italy shall we, and hunt for truffles with the most adorable and savvy pups! “Deep in the forests of Piedmont, Italy, a handful of men, seventy or eighty years young, hunt for the rare and expensive white Alba truffle—which to date has resisted all of modern science’s efforts at cultivation. They’re guided by a secret culture and training passed down through generations, as well as by the noses of their cherished and expertly-trained dogs. They live a simpler, slower way of life, in harmony with their loyal animals and their picture-perfect land, seemingly straight out of a fairy tale. They’re untethered to cell phone screens or the Internet, opting instead to make their food and drink by hand and prioritizing in-person connections and community.” Originally this film was set to premiere today (and may still be in limited showings), but recently, the officialy released was pushed back to March 21st. Put this movie on your calendar as I think it will be quite the treat to watch.
—One By One: A Novel by Ruth Ware
Described by some as the Agatha Christie of the 21st century, bestselling author Ruth Ware’s new mystery has caught the attention of book critics in the most welcomed way. “Getting snowed in at a luxurious, rustic ski chalet high in the French Alps doesn’t sound like the worst problem in the world . . . When the cofounder of Snoop, a trendy London-based tech startup, organizes a weeklong trip for the team in the French Alps, it starts out as a corporate retreat like any other: PowerPoint presentations and strategy sessions broken up by mandatory bonding on the slopes. But as soon as one shareholder upends the agenda by pushing a lucrative but contentious buyout offer, tensions simmer and loyalties are tested. The storm brewing inside the chalet is no match for the one outside, however, and a devastating avalanche leaves the group cut off from all access to the outside world. Even worse, one Snooper hadn’t made it back from the slopes when the avalanche hit.” A whodunit to keep you turning the page. I think this sounds like a fantastic caper for the traveler and the armchair sleuth.
I think I could simply stock my closet with La Ligne clothes and be entirely set for each season, but as I was perusing, it was their new Bower Bag (two different designs, see below) that caught my eye, and I wanted to share. 🙂
Use promo code TINSEL and save 30-50% site-wide. For sweaters, for denim, or totes, the savings are quite sweet.
Once I finally began watching Toronto set Murdoch Mysteries this fall, I watched all 13 seasons. I know! But they are quite fun, and I am a tremendous fan of the character Julia Ogden (who isn’t?). And today I have some good news, Season 14 is about to begin! The taping of the 14th season wrapped up this fall, and will be available to view Monday January 4th at 8pm on CBC (and soon to follow on AcornTV).
The end of the week, the last Friday of 2020 and it is Christmas. Keeping it quiet and simple, which is honestly how I typically spend it (and shhhh – maybe not shhhh – love it ☺️), I am excited to share with you this final This & That of the year.
Yesterday, my dad and I, along with Norman, took a wonderfully physically exhausting and exhilarating hike to the top of the moraine which flanks the east side of Wallowa Lake (a pleistocene glacier-made lake in NE Oregon) and saw gorgeous views of Mount Joseph and the entire valley (monthly newsletter subscribers saw a pic in their free delivery today and you can take a video tour with me in January 1st’s A Cuppa Moments). Needless to say, this may become a new tradition. I hope you too are finding new discoveries as you explore new or different ways to celebrate this holiday season. If you are celebrating Christmas, however you may celebrate it, I want to wish you a very happy day.
This final week of 2020 is the regular and only week I take off from posting new content on the blog each year, and I will be continuing this tradition. However, be sure to stop by tomorrow as a special day of celebration always takes place here at TSLL on the 26th. And beginning on Monday December 28th a week of Top Posts and Episodes from the past 12 months will be shared. There will not be a This & That on January 1st (my week off will run from December 28th to January 3rd), but there will be a new A Cuppa Moments video chat for TOP Tier subscribers.
I want to thank you for stopping by today or whenever you snuggle in and peruse this week’s This & That this holiday weekend. Wishing you a wonderful day and weekend of cheer, love and joy. Until tomorrow, bonne journée.
~7 Little Differences about Christmas in France [Oui in France]
~How to stay positive this festive season [Pick the Brain]
~Why the Oyster Man is the hero who redeemed 2020 [The Local]
~What if ‘overthinking’ is actually good for you? [Tiny Buddha]
~Even extroverts feel awkward in social situations this year [The New York Times]
~For fellow Anglophiles and those who love the talented British cookbook writer Elizabeth David – The Challenges and Pleasures of Elizabeth David [The Art of Eating]
~Top Secrets of High-Achievers [LifeHack]
~Classic French films to watch [HipParis]
~Speaking of French favorites, watch this snowball throwing film from Lyon 1896. [The New York Times]
~So good and worth remembering, when it comes to relationships of all types, apply the Vampire Test [Austin Kleon]
~I do love this tradition, but why is it so? Why do the French eat so much seafood at Christmas? [The Local]
~This video sums up much of what I have learned about love this year and perhaps it is the best video to end the final This & That of 2020.