This & That: No. 149

Mar 13, 2015

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~Amherst: A Novel by William Nicholson

Oscar winning screenwriter, William Nicholson, takes two love stories (one from the past and one from the present), the American poet Emily Dickinson to preside over both, and parallels their adulterous and destined affairs. Arriving from London in present day, Alice Dickinson arrives in Amherst, Massachusetts, to complete research for a potential screenplay about Emily Dickinson’s brother Austin who had a scandalous affair with a married woman 20 years his junior.

While on location, Alice herself becomes entangled in a similar affair with an English professor very much her senior. With love at the core of the novel, its temptations, wonders and amazements are shared with pieces of history as the author’s guide.

~Less Medicine, More Health: 7 Assumptions That Drive Too Much Medical Care

As a doctor at Dartmouth’s Medical Center, H. Gilbert Welch offers the argument that more medical care doesn’t not equate to better health. After his best-selling book diagnosis, Welch debunks seven myths that prompt many of us to undergo too many tests, expose ourselves unnecessarily to too many procedures and offers suggestions on how to remain healthy (a healthy balance must be struck) without stressing our minds and our bodies out.

Read a recent interview he gave on Science Friday here.


~While We Were Young

On March 27th, Ben Stiller and Naomi Watts star in a thoughtful film as they star as a middle-aged couple who has recently become captivated by a young couple who explore and enjoy life with abandon. Stepping into their world, Stiller & Watts contemplate their age and what they really want. I must say, I’m quite curious to watch this Noah Baumbach film.

~Francophile Find

~News in Slow French

If you are someone like me, who must stay abreast of the daily news, but also would love (in all of my spare time) to improve my French, this just might be the app for you. Offering weekly newscasts that discuss the top stories of the week in French, yes, slow French, you will be amazed at how much you pick up. With a free app available (in other languages as well), this a simple tool to improve your listening and comprehension in the language you are eager to learn.


~Rebel Heart, Madonna

Okay, I may date myself here, but in the eighties, Madonna’s album True Blue was the first cassette I ever purchased. So, for that reason, and now many others, I will forever be a fan. With a double disc album having been just released this past Tuesday, the debut song “Living for Love” is one that is certainly growing on me. (This video and song will forever be one of my favorites.) Have a look and listen below:


~Jo starring Jean Reno on Acorn

I continue to be reminded why I love subscribing to the British television streaming service Acorn. Just this past week, I was perusing the selections on this $4.99/month service and stumbled upon two of my favorite items combined into one – anything French and mysteries. Set in Paris, Jean Reno stars as a Joachim (Jo) Saint-Clair who is a veteran detective in Paris Criminal Brigade. With eight episodes in its first season which was just recently released, if you were a fan of the original Law & Order (the executive producer is behind Jo) and you love seeing the famed sights of Paris, you will be in for a treat.



~recipe for Pear Almond Cake~

A warm, and perhaps rainy at times weekend can only be described in my dictionary of living well as absolutely ideal. With plans for a combination of work (but fun work as I am finishing up the Spring Shopping Guide), play (working in the yard and setting it up for spring) and leisure (reading, napping, whatever else sounds relaxing, nibbling on something sweet and scrumptious perhaps?), I have been waiting for such a weekend for some time.

How about you? What would be your ideal leisurely weekend at home? Hopefully, whatever it is, it is one its way for the next few days. And you know what? You’ve earned it. Savor, revel, indulge, relax. Take the time to rejuvenate yourself so that you can be your best self.

Whether you spend the weekend relaxing, traveling, bee-bopping or anything in between, here are a few articles you might enjoy reading . . .

~11 Important Things You Should Know About Yourself

~What We Appreciate, Appreciates

~10 Courageous Ways to Live Without Regret

~Kate Middleton visits Downton Abbey

~Why We Worry, and What to Do About It

~The Daily Beast tries to understand and then smooths out the fuss about Sheryl Sandburg

And in case you missed Chanel’s Fall 2015 collection in the Grand Palais, have a look below at the impressive and to the “T” construction of a stereotypical Parisian brasserie. Named Brasserie Gabrielle after its beloved founder, the first pic is quite the who’s who, and to view all of my favorites from Paris Fashion Week, click here.

parischanel~ from left to right: Anna Wintour, Mario Testino, Hamish Bowles and Brad Kroenig with son Hudson (Karl Lagerfeld’s godson)~

gabrielle2  gabrielle1



Images: (2) (4), Brasserie images via Vogue Paris, Chanel and Harper’s Bazaar


5 thoughts on “This & That: No. 149

  1. My ideal and leisurely weekend at home is to sleep a little later than usual, go to brunch at our local cafe, have a visit with my daughter and grand daughter, read what I do not have time for during the week, buy some flowers and actually enjoy them, watch a good movie, cook a healthy home made meal and not do anything related to work for 48 hours.

    Accidental Icon

  2. Shannon, you’ve done it again! I wouldn’t know half of this if it weren’t for your informative This & That. “Jo” looks amazing. I need the slow Spanish to help me regain what I have lost. However, I want to learn French. I like French films. Have you seen “Rafifi”? Right now, I’ve been watching some movies with Jeanne Moreau.Thank you! Have a great weekend!

  3. Thank you for the recommendations! Less Medicine, More Health sounds like a book that would interest me. I am currently reading a book that provides the reason why running too many tests and having too many procedures only serve to confuse doctors as to what the problem is (if indeed there even is one!): How We Decide by Jonah Lehrer explains how the brain makes decisions — both good and bad, and how to make better ones. A spoiler: having too much information is not always a good thing!

    Even though I am not a big fan of Ben Stiller, the movie definitely sounds like a worthy addition to my Netflix queue.

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