This & That: May 15, 2020

May 15, 2020

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Books about food, life, letting go, living and eating well, a packable classic rain coat for spring showers, delicate, simple scrumptious pajamas, a new book about Paris and podcasting, market baskets and even more.


The Lemonade Life: How to Fuel Success, Create Happiness and Conquer Anything by Zack Friedman

Released last fall to high praise, readers will discover what “the most successful people have one thing in common, the power to flip five internal ‘switches’ . . . and when activated, they are the secret to fuel success, create happiness, and conquer anything.” Full of specific individual examples, if you are looking for a new approach to living well in both your personal and professional life, this may be just the book for you.

~Support Local and Independent Bookshops when you purchase this book from here.

Let It Go: Downsizing Your Way to a Richer, Happier Life by Peter Walsh

If you are looking for a specific, hands-on approach to downsizing, Peter Walsh’s new book (released December 2019) will provide the actionable steps you seek. Readers will (1) Understand the emotional challenges that accompany downsizing; (2) Establish a hierarchy of mementos and collectibles; (3) Calculate the amount of stuff you can bring into your new life; and (4) Create strategies for dividing heirlooms among family members without drama. Some of us may have already downsized and have found a simpler and more fulfilling way of living, but others may still want to but just need help to arrive at such a way of living. Have a look at this book if you fall into the latter category.

~Support Local and Independent Bookshops when you purchase the book from here.

The Physiology of Taste: Or Meditations on Transcendental Gastronomy by Jean Anthelme Brillat-Savarin and translated by M.K.F. Fisher

This book could have just as well been listed in the Francophile finds this week. “First published in France in 1825 and continuously in print ever since, Jean Anthelme Brillat-Savarin’s masterpiece is a historical, philosophical, and epicurean collection of recipes, reflections, and anecdotes on everything and anything gastronomical.” Discover and savor the joys of the table shared by Brillat-Savarin and translated and edited by well-known Francophile writer M.K.F. Fisher.

~Support Local Bookshops and Independent when you purchase the book from here.

Why Bother? Discover the Desire for What’s Next by Jennifer Louden

Just released last month, this is a book to motivate you to make the effort. To give what you wish for and desire and hope will materialize a shot. Author and “personal-growth expert Jennifer Louden challenges you to open your mind, your heart, and your life by following where the question leads”. Released at a serendipitous time, “Louden demonstrates how to bother when it feels impossible or like too much work, whether after professional defeats, heartbreak, illness, or life-changing loss. She shows why you must prioritize what’s calling you at any time of your life, especially when you’ve sidelined your dreams to raise kids, pay the rent, or take care of aging parents. And crucially, she shows you how tapping into your deepest desires can give you the energy to move forward―even when the world seems in such dire straits”. 

~Support Local and Independent Bookshops when you purchase the book from here.


Cannelle et Vanille: Nourishing Gluten-free Recipes for Every Meal and Mood by Aran Goyoaga

From the writer and blog I came to enjoy many years ago when I first began blogging in 2009 and 2010, Aran Goyaga with her beautiful photography and talent in the kitchen released her first cookbook last fall. While focused entirely on sharing gluten-free recipes, what I am confident readers will discover is that delicious recipes can indeed be gluten-free.

~Support Local and Independent Bookshops when you purchase the book from here.

Francophile Find

Oliver Gee’s Virtual Book Tour is in Portland, Oregon!

Released this week, fellow podcaster Oliver Gee’s new book Paris: On Air was released. And as he had originally planned to be in the states this month, he has shifted gears and is having a virtual book tour. Be sure to check out his full schedule here, but if you are a member of Portland, Oregon’s Alliance Française, then you can join Oliver this Sunday May 17th at 11am for $5 ($8 for non-members). The tickets are limited, so even if you are not a member and would like to join, be sure to purchase now. And in the meantime, tune into his podcast, The Earful Tower podcast.

On Monday June 1st, Oliver will join me on the podcast, The Simple Sophisticate, to talk about not only his book but how lockdown went, what he did immediately after lockdown and much more. Be sure to tune in.

The Paris Writers Circle by Norma Hopcraft

With a succinct description, it is enough to intrigue. If you are a writer or a Francophile, and especially if you are both, you may just want to pick up Norma Hopcraft’s book which was released in 2018.

~Support Local and Independent Bookshops when you purchase at here.


Mosser Glass, Addison Goblets, Amethyst, set of 4, One King’s Lane

To my fellow February born-readers, these are the goblets for us! Amethyst, our birthstone, in a chic design – what a unique statement. 🙂 Honestly, the design caught my eye, and whether or not you are a February baby, what a beautiful addition to the glassware collection you already have or wish to begin.

The White Company Water Carafe

Whether having a carafe full of water next to the bedside for you or your guests, this simple, timeless design will be a functional and beautiful piece to keep for years.


Cole Haan short packable rain jacket (navy, more colors)

We have entered the rainy season here in Bend, and I am loving it. And as I am spending many hours out in the garden, the rain is hardly a deterrent. Functional, classic in style and easy to pack (it can fold into the smallest of sizes), Cole Haan’s short rain jacket is reduced fifty percent and a steal of a good deal – perfect for gardening and casual outings as well.

DVF Davey Soft-Voile Midi Dress

Dreaming of summer and lazy evenings and days when I view this dress. How lovely and certainly a design and print to be enjoyed for many summers to come.

Food52 Handwoven Market Basket (two colors)

Market season and fresh food and artisanal goods are just about ready to be opened in Bend, and I cannot wait to bring my basket and fill it with goods. These handwoven baskets, especially the darker one on the left, caught my eye, and maybe yours as well.

Zara Embroidered Satin Pajama Set

Simple with a subtle touch of delicate embroidery. Sleep well in hot summer nights with this sophisticated pajama set.

The week of rain and wind and growth and spring goodness! So much to celebrate as gradually positive change is happening in so many ways. I have been enjoying tending to work during the day and tinkering in the yard deheading, planting and mowing during breaks to be outside.

Last Friday, as shown below, I began to bake with a new cookbook I am excited to have in my library, and to delicious result. Be sure, stepping into the kitchen during these past two months has been some of the best medicine, as I have a feeling it has been for many of you as well.

Before I sign off today, I want to remind that beginning this Sunday, May 17th, TSLL’s 2nd Annual British Week will commence! Look forward to two posts a day for an entire week, four giveaways (two exclusive: one to weekly newsletter subscribers and one to ad-free subscribers) and all things British to satiate your Anglophile predilection.

I hope you have a wonderful start to the weekend, and below you will find a handful and more of articles and one video I think you might enjoy. Until Sunday, bonne journée!

~Thank you Sue for sharing with me helping me “escape” to France for a moment – The Prettiest Towns in Provence [CN Traveller]

~Five Simple Ways to be Happy with Yourself Every Day [Life Hack]

~Gardeners Reveal their Favorite Rose Varieties to Buy Now [House & Garden UK]

~Why We’re Gardening During the Unique Time in History [Grub Street]

~7 Self-Compassion Practices to Help Give Yourself a Break [Well + Good]

~David Lebovitz details the specific changes Paris (and France) are transitioning into after coming out of Lockdown (one item: international travel is closed until July 24th)

~Speaking of International, Travel: The Future of Travel [The New York Times]

~How to Increase Happiness, According to Research [The Atlantic]

~A new series from the creator of Sex and the City to keep an eye on as it will be coming soon and is set in Paris – Emily in Paris [Town & Country]

~The lockdown in Paris is over, so what now? Listen to The Earful Tower’s interview with the Mayor of the 4th arrondissement in the Marais

~The ultimate self-care checklist: 101 Soothing Actions for 2020 [Live Bold and Bloom]

8 thoughts on “This & That: May 15, 2020

  1. I am so happy to discover “Zara at Home.” I have been searching for the perfect white, cotton nightgown, and they appear to carry them in abundance!

  2. Shannon, I just wanted to alert you to the fact your Well+Good link takes you to the NY Times article on the future of travel.
    Love the This & That this week as usual

  3. Shannon,
    Love the thoughts on downsizing. My husband and I recently did just that. Due to several reasons, we sold our four bedroom home we raised three daughters in and decided to rent a charming duplex for a year . It is an intern move while we decide where we want to land. We moved in October, took a wonderful trip and traveled frequently. Then Covid hit. Like everyone , we find ourselves home. And, really enjoying the small patio garden, smaller living space, that at every turn seems to provide just the right things we need from it. Precious objects have now become readily visible. In our larger home they were spread across four bedrooms, three living areas and sadly infrequently gazed upon. Outdoor space is now highly valued, and much more enjoyed since it is small and much less a maintenance burden. I know these are hard times. Somehow with great fortune we find this a time to enjoy what we have, where we are and who we are. So cheers to downsizing!

  4. I only started listening to your podcast a little over a month ago now and I must say that I’ve been enjoying it a lot! You cover a lot of different topics, your voice is very engaging and I feel that you are very down to earth.

    I’ve never been to Paris, have only been to south of France a long time ago and your podcast makes me want to go visit soon … if only it’s possible! Well, when the time comes, I’ll take with me your cues and tips!

    Looking forward to listening to your many different topics, thank you and more power to you!

    1. Rossana, Thank you for tuning into the podcast. Yes, while we may not be able to travel to France in the near future, we will eventually, and how it will be worth the wait. ????

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