This & That: December 6, 2019

Dec 06, 2019

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The Boy, The Mole, The Fox and the Horse by Charlie Mackesy

A TSLL reader recommended Charlie Mackesy new book to me, and as a fan of The Alchemist, I quickly put it on my “to-read-sooner-rather-than-later” list. Released this past October and already a bestseller on The New York Times book list, Wall Street Journal‘s list and USA Today’s list, if you enjoyed The Tao of Pooh, Mackesy’s book shares a tale of “inspiration and hope in uncertain times based on his famous quartet of characters. The Boy, the Mole, the Fox, and the Horse who explore their unlikely friendship and the poignant, universal lessons they learn together”.

The Joy of MIssing Out: Live More by Doing Less by Tonya Dalton

Also released this past October, Tonya Dalton writes a book to help women let go of the guilt and stop feeling as though doing more should be one’s life mantra. “Showing them how to focus on what’s important to them and then helps them develop their own unique productivity systems. Through her proven liveWELL Method, Dalton provides actionable strategies with relevant exercises that help women to discover their purpose, clarify their priorities, simplify their lives, and finally achieve harmony by embracing the ‘unbalance’ that is inherent in their lives”. 

Making Room: How to Create Soul and Style in Your Home by Lucy Jo Bowman

If you are looking for specific, actionable steps for curating a home that offers a hug each time you step across the threshold, Lucy Jo Bowman’s new book is one to pick up. Sharing how to “clean, declutter, organize, design, budget, shop, and find your style to create peace and joy”, you will soon have a home that is welcoming to guests but most importantly to you each day.

Nothing to See Here: A Novel by Kevin Wilson

An unexpected bestseller, Kevin Wilson’s new novel involves two boarding school roommates long separated that not look to each other to navigate through a disastrous scandal.

Novel Interiors: Living in Enchanted Rooms Inspired by Literature by Lisa Borgnes Giramonti 

Currently in the middle (actually, it would be more accurate to say, the beginning) of curating my own home and wishing to welcome my love of books, a TSLL reader shared Novel Interiors with me, and I am so thankful she did. “Lisa Giramonti inspires a new approach to decorating: by teaching us through the lens of worlds we may already know and love. With gorgeous photographs by World of Interiors photographer Ivan Terestchenko, aspirational quotes, and tailored reading lists, Novel Interiors reveals the essence and details of interiors mentioned in great literary works”.

Simple Abundance: 365 Days to a Balanced and Joyful Life by Sarah Breathnach

Now if this book made its way into my stocking, that would be all I need to make for a very happy Christmas morning. 🙂 Having read and reread Sarah Breathnach’s bestselling original Simple Abundance more than twenty years ago (1995), I am excited to read and be reminded of her lessons that spoke to me in so many different and powerful ways many years ago. Refreshed and updated “to address the needs of a new generation, with her signature candor, wit, and wisdom that made her a trusted and compassionate confidant for millions of women” give as a gift to someone who love and that includes giving it to yourself.

Why Smart People Hurt: A Guide for the Bright, the Sensitive and the Creative by Eric Maisel

Released in 2013, I wanted to share natural psychology specialist and creativity coach Dr. Eric Maisel’s book which breaks down and reveals “evidence that you are not alone in your struggles with living in a world, logic- and creativity-based strategies to cope with having a brain that goes into overdrive at the drop of a hat, and 1uestions that will help you create your own personal roadmap to a calm and meaningful life”.


Happiness is Baking: Cakes, Pies, Tarts, Muffins, Brownies, Cookies: Favorite Desserts from the Queen of Cake by Maida Heatter

Released in April and with a foreword by Dorie Greenspan is a “baking book by bestselling ‘legend’ of baking, Maida Heatter, a modern-classic collection of her all-time best-loved, tried-and-true recipes”. Complete with full-colored illustrations throughout, discover fool-proof recipes and enjoy enhancing your baking know-how.


Two Popes

I recently learned of Netflix’s new film Two Popes starring Anthony Hopkins and Jonathan Pryce while watching CBS’s Sunday Morning. Focused on the time leading up to Pope Benedict XVI’s abdication, the first in papal history, the film imagines what the conversations may have entailed between the current Pope at the time and the man who would eventually take on the role, leaving the world with two living popes. Now streaming on Netflix, have a look at the trailer below.


KUSC’s Spirit Channel

More than a year ago, I was introduced to a classical music station (available via an app as well) that I now listen to each day of the week, and this year they are offering for one month, a holiday “spirit” channel to celebrate this festive time of year. All in the vein of classical selections, sit back and play the station (ad-free) as you go about your day, becoming a bit more relaxed and beginning to revel in the holiday spirit.


Book Review Tote

Bibliophiles, a tote for you!!! Perhaps a conversation starter as well.

Zara Home with Amanda Brooks, At Home

Living in the coutryside of the Cotswolds with her family, Amanda Brooks has partnered with Zara Home to share her holiday home (be sure to click through the link above to tour her festive space) and items that you too can welcome into your holiday decor. What I appreciate about this particular home tour is that many of the decor ideas are cost-free and simple crafts that we can each do on our own.


The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel, season 3 premiere

And it’s back!!! Season 3 is now available to stream, and it should be quite a fun ride. Have a look at the trailer below and discover where Mrs. Maisel’s comedy career takes her next.

~recipe for No-bake Chocolate Mint Cups~

A holiday weekend begins, and I am ready to do a bit more decorating, write and send my holiday cards, finalize my gift list and yep, watch a few episodes of The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel. 🙂 It is supposed to rain in town here in Bend, which means, it will likely snow in the mountains, so I might find my way to the mountain as well.

I hope your holidays have begun well as this first full weekend of December arrives, and below I have a handful and half of articles and one video I think you might enjoy. Thank you for stopping by and bonne journée!

~Where to Eat in Paris on Christmas and Christmas Eve [HipParis]

~7 Assumptions We Need to Stop Making About Other People [Marc and Angel]

~19 Ways to Boost Your Brain Power [Live Bold and Bloom]

~Yum and Simple! – Linzer Cookies from Inspired by Charm

~Is there a better remedy for Jet Lag? [The New York Times]

~A Heads Up for Travelers Who Use Public USB Outlets [Travel & Leisure]

~The Oldest Shops in Paris [Frommers]

~How Friendship Changes with Age, According to 3 Older Women [Man Repeller]

~5 Cheese Platters to Copy for Your Next Soirée [Bon Appétit]

~Inspired by this week’s new podcast episode which spotlights Ines de la Fressange’s new Parisian Style book, a TSLL reader brought this video to my attention and I am so glad she did!

12 thoughts on “This & That: December 6, 2019

  1. Hello Shannon
    Your “This & That” is always inspiring but I was especially tickled to see Charlie Mackesy’s book on your list. I preordered & received 10 copies. I’m gifting them to some of the most important people on my Christmas list. A lovely book.

  2. Not leaving it to hints (or Santa Claus!), I have ordered the hardcover edition of SImple Abundance for myself for Christmas. This book quite literally transformed my life when it first came out & while I’ve read it cover-to-cover a number of times & have even hosted online reading groups that required me to write daily essays on each of her lessons, it’s been a few years since I last went through it. I can hardly wait to start 2020 with the revised version in hand. Great This’n’That list, as always. Those no-bake chocolate-mint cups look suitably dangerous 🙂

    1. Now that sounds like a wonderful gift to give ourselves. It truly was (and is) a potentially positive life changing book. I can remember watching the author sit down with Oprah and her ideas were refreshing and a deep breath of fresh air to find more peace in the everyday and in many ways give ourselves permission to get to know ourselves well. I cannot wait to read the new edition. 🙂 Thank you for sharing your gift list to yourself Susanne. ?

  3. Another good list, Shannon! I’m *so* eager to watch “The Two Popes”!

    I made the foolish decision to have a major home renovation done (a bathroom completely remodeled – stripped to the studs) these two weeks before Christmas and I am regretting it immensely (loud construction, strangers in the house, inevitable problems) – never again during this time period which should ideally be peaceful! At any rate, your blog is a pleasant respite of calm during this stress.

  4. Hi Shannon,
    So glad you are enjoying Novel Interiors. Maida Heatter’s baking book is on my Christmas list, too! Hopefully I’ll be baking bundt cakes for days come January.

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