This & That: April 3, 2020

Apr 03, 2020

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A food documentary not to miss, the return of a much-enjoyed salty CBS drama, Boden’s site-wide sale, Italian summer sandals, how to channel your inner-artist, Alice Waters’ daughter’s new book, Samin Nosrat’s new podcast and more!


Always Home: A Daughter’s Recipes and Stories (foreword by Alice Waters) by Fanny Singer

If you love food, you know Alice Waters, and you may know of her daughter Fanny. The famed restaurant founded by Waters Chez Panisse is a must-dine at locale, and while it may be closed at the moment, it will open again. In the meantime, enjoy Always Home.

Last week, Fanny released her own intimate memoir of her life growing up with her mother. Sharing the food, the travel, the people and everything else in between, Always Home shares many different moments in Franny’s life journey, accompanies them with recipes, and “shares the story of her own culinary coming of age, revealing a side of her legendary mother that has never been seen before”.

Goodbye, Things: The New Japanese Minimalism by Fumio Sasaki 

While you may not want to go “full minimalism”, perhaps understanding the power of reducing what you have has always been something you’ve curious about. Fumio Sasaki shares his own journey of letting go of everything except what he needed in order to discover “true freedom, [a] new focus, and a real sense of gratitude for everything around him”.

How to Be an Artist by Jerry Saltz

Whether you want to be a painter, a writer, an artist, a photographer or a performer, Jerry Saltz’s new book (released in March) shares “invaluable insight into what really matters to emerging artists: originality, persistence, a balance between knowledge and intuition, and that most precious of qualities, self-belief. Brimming with rules, prompts, and practical tips, How to Be an Artist gives artists new ways to break through creative blocks, get the most from materials, navigate career challenges, and above all find joy in the work”.

British Find

Sophie Conran Apothecary Glass Vases

British decorator and cookbook author Sophie Conran curates seasonal home and kitchen collections from suppliers located around the world, and it was these green apothecary glass vases that caught my attention recently. Based on  traditional Hungarian pickling jars, these vases are hand-blown from recycled glass. And the price is quite nice as well.


How to Dress an Egg: Surprising and Simple Ways to Cook Dinner by Ned Baldwin and Peter Kaminsky

With the goal of teaching readers how to cook exceptionally well without the need for special equipment or fussy techniques, How to Dress an Egg simplifies the often seemingly difficult task of cooking and shares recipes along the way to show you the way. Author Ned Baldwin, “a home cook who taught himself to be an excellent chef, sees no reason why anyone else can’t do the same”. Now the restaurant chef at Houseman’s in Greenwich Village in NYC, he shares riffs of the classic comfort foods so many of us enjoy.

Francophile Find

The Measure of My Powers: A Memoir of Food, Misery and Paris by Jackie Kai Ellis

If you enjoyed Eat, Pray, Love you may just want to pick up Jackie Kai Ellis’ memoir released in 2018. Perhaps you remember the spotlight of her Parisian apartment that was frequently seen around the web, and now you can enjoy reading her story.

“This is the story of one woman’s journey to find herself. Armed with nothing but a love of food and the words of the 20th-century food writer M.F.K. Fisher, she travels from France to Italy, then the Congo, and back again. Along the way, she goes to pastry school in Paris, eats the most perfect apricots over the Tuscan hills, watches a family of gorillas grazing deep in the Congolese brush, has her heart broken one last time on a bridge in Lyon, and, ultimately, finds a path to life and joy”.

Be sure to check out Ellis’ new online destination for beautiful photography, recipes and decor inspiration — APT La Fayette.


At Home with Gustavo, KUSC

Beginning this past Tuesday evening and running through Friday, one of my favorite classical music stations – KUSC – is offering a unique and special program from 6-7pm. The conductor of Los Angeles’ Philharmonic Gustavo Dudamel is co-hosting a special program each Tuesday-Friday night for the foreseeable future as we all are staying home to bring the music to us. Handpicked music by Gustavo who joins KUSC’s Brian Lauritzen, enjoy listening to his selections and his discussion as to why these personal music choices are important to listen to in a time of social isolation. I have thoroughly enjoyed unwinding each work day evening to this program, and as much of the music is exclusive and not available anywhere else, it is a very special treat.


—Home Cooking with Samin Nosrat

Just in time for all of that time we now have in the kitchen, cook and bestselling cookbook author Samin Nosrat has just premiered a new podcast – Home Cooking. Co-hosted with Hrishikesh Hirway, they seek “to help you figure out what to cook (and keep you company) during the quarantine”.


Boden Spring Sale

The many spring sales continue (you can check them all out in TSLL’s Spring Shopping Guide), and Boden’s is site-wide. Enjoy 20% off everything using promo code E6E3. I have picked a few items below, but there were so many more you must check out.

Canfora Gisele leather sandal (more colors)

Summer will come, and we will be able to enjoy it in beautiful, grand style. So why not have a classic Italian pair of leather sandals to don with your most comfortable summer dress?


The Good Fight, CBS All-Access

The fourth season has returned to CBS All-Access. Beginning on Thursday April 9th, watch the first episode of what looks to be a most intriguing new season. Have a look at the trailer below.

The Inn at Little Washington, PBS

A big thank you to a TSLL reader for bringing this documentary to my attention. The Inn at Little Washington, located in Washington, Virginia, is head by the man known as “The Pope of American Cuisine,” Chef Patrick O’Connell. A legend. “He’s revered as a pioneer of refined American cooking, and as the eclectic restaurateur who transformed a country inn into an international culinary temple. But, behind the fairytale – behind the humor and whimsy – lies a story of a self-taught chef who started with nothing and overcame a decades-long feud with a fiercely conservative rural town to create one of the most renowned restaurants in America”. Have a look at the trailer below and check your local PBS listings to see when it airs.

A molten lava cake, yep, that might be on the menu this weekend. It’s supposed to be cold, snowy and rainy before it warms and brightens up here in Bend next week, and having something this scrumptious, luxurious and chocolatey, yep, I may be giving this a try.

How are you doing? I hope you are doing better. I hope you are finding some sort of rhythm that works for what you need in our moment in history. Understandably, knowing that the rhythm will eventually change can either be a bright light at the end of the tunnel or dreaded as you may be finally catching your breath, but finding what we can now that works well, that lets you get your feet underneath you and stand upright is powerful medicine.

Three weeks in with at least three weeks ago, my rhythm is being found. In many ways, those three weeks flew by, and when I reflect on why, I can share it was the celebrating what I enjoyed that helped immensely. I hope you can find the nuggets of goodness, the gems of buoyant beauty and the priceless self-discoveries that will help turn this time into a treasure worth being realized as we move forward wiser and more appreciative.

Below I have gathered up a handful of articles you might enjoy. I hope you have a great weekend, and if you decide like many TSLL readers to give The Simply Luxurious Kitchen‘s croissant recipe a try this weekend, be sure to share with me how it goes! Tag me on Instagram – @thesimplyluxuriouslife. I will be enjoying my croissants on Sunday morning, and perhaps you will as well. Until Monday, bonne journée.

~20 Things to Do in the Garden During Isolation [Country Living UK]

~How to Access your Personal Power to Create Success [Life Hack]

~An essential guide to choosing living room furniture [House & Garden UK]

~Why stress baking and cleaning reduce your anxiety [Wired]

~Why you shouldn’t cancel your holiday [CondeNast Traveler]

~7 Virtual Tours around the globe to enjoy [Harpers Bazaar]

~You can now use 350,000 images from the Museum of Modern Art for Free [Met Museum]

~Discover the “essentials” for world cultures as shown through the current times we find ourselves [BBC]

~How to Channel Your Stress into Creativity [New York Times]

~The details of Harry and Meghan’s scaling down their Royal Machine [The New York Times]

15 thoughts on “This & That: April 3, 2020

  1. I just read that book Goodbye, Things and really liked it. He is more extreme than I am, but I got more inspired. I have been on my own minimalist journey for three or more years now, and absolutely love having less stuff. It all started with my wardrobe, which is a never ending challenge, however it is really fun! For me I have become more intentional with everything, from what I buy for my wardrobe to what I bring in to our home. And rather than being mindless about any spending, I always check in with myself to see if an item will really add value to my life.
    As always, I love Fridays because of all the fun stuff you post!! Thank you.
    Stay well and safe Shannon!!!

    1. Tamra, thank you for stopping by and for sharing your thoughts on the book. What a liberation in many ways, and a reminder of the benefits of living consciously and thoughtfully. Wishing you a wonderful weekend. 🙂

  2. I grew up near the Inn at Little Washington, and had never heard of this documentary. It’s definitely a special place, with amazing food, in a beautiful part of the country. I look forward to checking out the show!

  3. Thank you for book recommendation on “How to be an Artist”! It has practical action steps to develop one’s creativity and I have enjoyed reading it so far.

  4. I just finished reading Goodbye Things (read it in a day!), thanks for the recommendation, I loved it. Whilst his version of minimalism is quite extreme, and his life very different to mine, he offers a different perspective and insight on minimalism compared to other books I have read on the subject. As always, you take away what is relevant to you, and I feel inspired and grateful to have come across this book. Merci Shannon ?

  5. The leather sandal you suggested brings back wonderful memories for me. After my husband and I married in Florence, we honeymooned in Capri where I was able to purchase two of these sandals. I continue to treasure them 5+ years later! Can’t wait to travel to Italy again, hopefully soon. Stay healthy, be well!

  6. omg so excited about the inn at little washington!! thank you so much for sharing that one, I’m definitely watching this weekend!

    I would not have heard about it otherwise!

    1. Sydney, I just enjoyed it this week, and I am confident you will as well. I am so grateful to a TSLL reader for bringing it to my attention, as I too would not have known about it. Enjoy!

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