A new documentary to celebrate the fathers in our lives, a new-to-me French romantic comedy series that I am thoroughly enjoying, books for the fellow TSLL creatives, my Sunday morning basket, Nigella’s much-sought after evening gown, decor and clothing sales and much more.
—At the Center of All Beauty: Solitude and the Creative Life by Fenton Johnson
Exploring the lives of Zora Neale Hurston, Henry David Thoreau, Emily Dickinson, Bill Cunningham and Paul Cézanne, along with social criticism about the often errant assumptions about those who thrive in solitude contrary to what society would have them do or behave, self-described creative-in-solitude Fenton Johnson “explores what it means to choose to be solitary and celebrates the notion . . . that solitude is a legitimate and dignified calling.” Having read the book in a matter of days, it certainly provoked much thought, much I could relate to, but not all, and appreciatively I acknowledged his sharing that we all thrive in different environments, and keeping this mind can potentially help each one of us thrive.
~Support local and independent bookstores and purchase this title from Bookshop.org
—You’re Not Listening: What You’re Missing and Why It Matters by Kate Murphy
Released in January, New York Times contributor Kate Murphy “explains why we’re not listening, what it’s doing to us, and how we can reverse the trend. She makes accessible the psychology, neuroscience, and sociology of listening while also introducing us to some of the best listeners out there (including a CIA agent, focus group moderator, bartender, radio producer, and top furniture salesman). Equal parts cultural observation, scientific exploration, and rousing call to action that’s full of practical advice, You’re Not Listening is to listening what Susan Cain’s Quiet was to introversion. It’s time to stop talking and start listening.”
~Support local and independent bookstores and purchase this title from Bookshop.org
If you have ever watched episodes of Nigella Lawson’s cooking show, you may have seen her, during the end credits, slip downstairs at night into the kitchen to nibble on leftovers from the meal she had previously cooked. And often, she is wearing a lovely evening gown. And yes, we now know which brand she is wearing, and it is far less expensive than you might have imagined: One Hundred Stars Evening Gown.
Available in over twenty different prints, some displaying maps of beloved cities – yes, Paris is one, in fact they have two different colored Paris maps – others in gorgeous floral designs and others sharing the beauty of mother nature such as waves (seen in the image at the top of the post), for fewer than £80, you too can have a beautiful evening gown to wear as you wind down or ease into your day.
Many readers have asked, after seeing my #tsllsundaymornings posts on Instagram, where to find the tray I serve my croissants and tea. Thankfully, it is a classic that is regularly in stock at Serena & Lily.
Available in three different sizes (and they are large – so be sure to measure where you want to put them to make sure they will fit), select from square (what I chose), rectangular (seen below) and round.
—Dads, Apple TV
After watching an interview with the creator of the new documentary Dads, Bryce Dallas Howard (Ron Howard’s daughter) accompanied in conversation with her father for CBS Sunday Morning, discussed the impetus of her film – to showcase what modern fathering is all about. I think the trailer below explains far better than I can what the film is all about. Look for it on Apple TV now as we celebrate dads this Sunday here in the states.
—Plan de Coeur (The Hook-up Plan)
A BIG thank you to a TSLL IG reader for recommending Plan de Coeur as a French series worth watching. I will be absolutely up front with you: I watched the entire first season in one night – yes, I was that intrigued as to how it would all work out in the end, and I think you will enjoy slipping away to Paris and following an unexpected love story unfold.
The second season is also available now on Netflix, and I will be enjoying that this weekend. Have a look at the trailer below and enjoy!
Sharon Santoni recently announced the theme for her next My Stylish French Box which will arrive at subscribers’ doorsteps in August, and it looks perfect for inspiring your next dinner party or soiree gathering with friends. Have a look at her new video below to discover a few more hints as to what you might receive should you order your very own box or send to a friend.
—Flourish: Stunning Arrangements with Flowers and Foliage for Every Season by Willow Crossley
Author Willow Crossley trained at the Covent Garden Academy of Flowers, creates floral arrangements for events and weddings and has recently supplied flowers for Anthropologie, Jo Malone, Mulberry. AND she was the florist for the evening reception for Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s royal wedding. Released in 2019, readers will discover a variety of ideas from simple to inspired and grand. Presenting thirty-eight projects arranged by season along with beautiful vase arrangements, the writing is personable; instructions on how to care for the flowers are exacting, and easy to follow. Readers will also learn how to plant beautiful containers from the traditional (milk bottles, jam jars) to the unique (wooden crates, teapots) to the unexpected (science beakers, birdcages, shells) inspires originality. Look for more books by Crossley such as her 2014 book Inspire: The Art of Living with Nature.
A simple arrangement in an everyday vase.
I know many of my decor inspiration posts have focus on English country cottages, but I know that is not everyone’s aesthetic preference. If you are more inclined to welcome modern furniture and touches to your home or mix and match different styles, be sure to check out CB2’s outdoor furniture sale offering up to 40% off.
J.Crew is bouncing back from bankruptcy and offering great deals in the process. Stop by to scoop up the simple staples you are looking for to complete your summer wardrobe.
The simple boatneck striped top
Jeans are a necessity, and if you are looking for jeans that will last, save 25% off select Paige’s women’s denim styles with promo code 25OFFNOW.
What a week it has been in the most wonderful of ways. While I shared more specifically about all that unfolded to cause celebration and appreciation in today’s weekly newsletter, part of the reason, a quite primary reason it went so well is that a long-overdue surgery for Oscar took place and went exceptionally well. As a doggie mama, I am breathing far more deeply and calmly than I have in a looooong time. There are certainly moments that rev up our adrenaline and uncertainty, but with support and trust in those we are placing our loved ones with, the outcome can remind us how unnecessary all of the worrying was.
I hope this past week has shared with you something to ease your mind, to offer reassurance and to calm any fears or worries you may have. Every week will have its own tone, but I hope you are able to find moments regularly to unwind, do nothing but just be and reflect on all that is well, what you have learned and how to move forward.
Below are more than a few articles and two videos I thought you might enjoy. Thank you for choosing to stop by the blog today, and until Monday bonne journée.
~What is this new online Bookshop.org option? Learn more about it and whether it truly helps independent bookstores [The New York Times]
~Frenchify Your Lingerie [Everyday Parisian]
~A Celebration of London’s Oldest Restaurants [House & Garden UK]
~A Love Letter to Restaurants from top writers [The New York Times]
~How to Grow Peonies [The English Garden]
~What is Cottage Garden Style? And How to Achive It Thank you to TSLL reader Sue in the UK for sharing this article with me [Middle-Sized Garden]
~Why introverts Should Journal Their Way Through Difficult Times [Introvert, Dear]
~Is the Pandemic Taking Women Back to the 1950s? [Financial Times]
~How to set boundaries with relatives or friends who are racist [Tiny Buddha]; tangently, a second book I will be reading on this topic, along with my fellow teaching colleagues, is this book – So You Want to Talk About Race?
~France ‘Turning’ a Page Opening Schools, Borders and Workplaces [The Guardian]
~How to Take a Brain Break on Tough Days [Well + Good]
~Vogue‘s 73 Questions with Esther Perel amidst the lockdown
~A 2020 commencement address by BK Fulton to inspire you to pay attention to the people on the margins and how amazing they/you/us have the potential to be if only they weren’t dismissed.