This & That: October 22, 2021
Friday October 22, 2021

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Are you ready for an abundance of culture, ideas, beauty, and just great items to explore on a Friday? Because here is a full T & T. ☺️ The final season of an award-winning series debuts, a much-anticipated autobiography is released, escape to a French chalet, two French films, sit back and listen to a new Bach album, become a student of your own bias and improve not only your life but others, save money on a favorite French beauty brand, learn about the life of one of my favorite jazz musicians, invest in a gorgeous fall/winter capsule trench coat, add a pair of lovely cashmere gloves and so much more.


The End of Bias: The Beginning: The science and practice of overcoming unconscious bias by Jessica Nordell

Released this past September, written about a topic I often taught and explored with my students, The End of Bias: The Beginning first teaches what unconscious bias is (the persistent, unintentional prejudiced behavior that clashes with our consciously held beliefs) and then author Jessica Nordell uses “nuance, compassion, and ten years’ immersion in the topic, weaves gripping stories with scientific research to reveal how minds, hearts, and behaviors change.” Insight and knowledge we all will benefit from to build a more civil, accepting and equal world.

Hooked: How Crafting Saved My Life by Sutton Foster

I admit, I do not crochet or knit, but I know many that do and find great calm as well as a creative outlet in the craft. I wanted to share this new book by actress of stage and screen Sutton Foster because quite simply, she is amazing and inspiring. The 2-time Tony Award winner, Sutton shares “funny and intimate stories and reflections about how crafting has kept her sane while navigating the highs and lows of family, love, and show business (and how it can help you, too).”

Katie Couric: Going There by Katie Couric

A book I have preordered and look forward to reading when it arrives next week, Katie Couric’s autobiography sounds to be a book that will actually ‘go there’ on a vast array of topics: professional and private. I will let you look at the full synopsis as it is looooong, but there is a lot I didn’t expect she would talk about and some I didn’t know was part of her journey (her daughters wrestling with their father’s interests in a certain part of history).

A Liberated Mind: How to Pivot Toward What Matters by Steven C. Hayes PhD

The originator of the Acceptance and Commitment Theory with regards to therapy, Dr. Steven C. Hayes “lays out the psychological flexibility skills that make it one of the most powerful approaches research has yet to offer. These skills have been shown to help even where other approaches have failed. Science shows that they are useful in virtually every area–mental health (anxiety, depression, substance abuse, eating disorders, PTSD); physical health (chronic pain, dealing with diabetes, facing cancer); social processes (relationship issues, prejudice, stigma, domestic violence); and performance (sports, business, diet, exercise).” Released in 2019 and positively reviewed, and while appearing to be an overly simple approach, “it resists our instincts and programming. The flexibility skills counter those ingrained tendencies. They include noticing our thoughts with curiosity, opening to our emotions, attending to what is in the present, learning the art of perspective taking, discovering our deepest values, and building habits based around what we deeply want.”

British Finds

The Woman on the Orient Express by Lindsay Jayne Ashford

Written in 2016, a fictitious tale with Agatha Christie as the protagonist. “Hoping to make a clean break from a fractured marriage, Agatha Christie boards the Orient Express in disguise. But unlike her famous detective Hercule Poirot, she can’t neatly unravel the mysteries she encounters on this fateful journey.”


Cravings: All Together: Recipes to Love: A Cookbook by Chrissy Teigen

Being released on Tuesday (the 26th), “Chrissy Teigen shares the recipes that have sustained her and her family, the ones that made her feel like everything is going to be okay. Recipes for Cozy Classic Red Lentil Soup, ingenious Chrissy signatures like Stuffed PB&J French Toast and puff pastry–wrapped Meatloaf Wellington, and family favorites like her mom Pepper’s Thai-style Sloppy Joes and John’s Saturday-morning Blueberry Buttermilk Pancakes will have you feeling like you’re pulling up a chair to her table.”


Ella Fitzgerald: Just One of Those Things

While released last year, I have yet to watch this documentary, and I look forward to watching this weekend. Jazz has long been one of my favorite music genres, and Ella Fitzgerald’s voice has always enthralled me. Just One of Those Things “explores the exquisite artistry of the first lady of scat as she embraced civil rights issues and influenced US music and culture.” Have a look at the trailer below and watch it on Netflix now.

The French Dispatch

Being released in theaters today, Wes Anderson’s The French Dispatch finally arrives for viewers to enjoy. “A love letter to journalists set in an outpost of an American newspaper in a fictional twentieth century French city that brings to life a collection of stories published in ‘The French Dispatch Magazine’.” Have a look at the trailer below full of a star-studded cast.

Francophile Finds

Life in a French Country House: Entertaining for All Seasons by Cordelia de Castellane

I mentioned the new release of Cordelia de Castellane book last week, but I wanted to share it one more time as it looks like delectable and a perfect escape to the countryside of France since most of us haven’t been able to visit for quite some time. Castellane is the creative director of Dior Home and Dior Baby and inspired by her own French country home, shares with readers in a her book, “organized according to the seasons of the year—winter, spring, summer, and fall—tips and inspirations for living and entertaining à la française. With individual sections dedicated to seasonal tableware, recipes, interior design, flower arranging, and more, readers will delight in learning how to re-create chic French style for special events and everyday occasions alike.”

—My Stylish French Box, November Box – Chalet Living

Speaking of French Country Living, the doyenne of French Country Living, Sharon Santoni, has a new My Stylish French Box to help you escape to the wintery French Alps: Chalet Living. Below is just a glimpse of what the box will include – Le Creuset will be one of the items!!! Be sure to reserve your box and purchase a gift for the Francophile on your holiday shopping list. Look for boxes to arrives in November.

Suzanna Andler

A new French film that is receiving quite a bit of buzz takes place over the course of only one full day. “Suzanna Andler (Charlotte Gainsbourg) visits a spacious villa on the French Riviera. She wants to rent it for the summer, but has doubts. And not just about the house. Forty-year-old Suzanna is at a crossroads in life. Married to a millionaire who has been cheating on her for years, she has recently taken a lover herself and has arranged to meet him here. Her children have stayed in Paris, and her husband is elsewhere – she doesn’t know where. Suzanna and her lover have a decision to make about their future. How long can she keep up the lying?” Have a look at the trailer below.

Things To Come

I want to thank TSLL readers who regularly send me recommendations to explore. This recommendation came from Elizabeth, and while I heard of the film when it was released five years ago, I neglected to watch it (but wanted to!). Thank you for bringing it back to my attention. Acclaimed French actress Isabelle Huppert stars in this film about “a philosophy teacher who soldiers through the death of her mother, losing her book deal, and dealing with a husband who is cheating on her.” As not-so-uplifting as this sounds, it is a triumphant tale about a woman who finds the beauty of living well as she navigates through and to the other side of these unwanted traumas. Have a look at the trailer below.


Bach: The Art of Life by Daniil Trifonov

I recently heard a track from cellist Daniil Trifonov’s new album and wanted to recommend. One detail that will be included in my new book (coming in early Spring 2022) are favorite musical tracks and both classical and jazz selections will be prevalent. Bach is hard to not include as many of his compositions rejuvenate, delight and refresh. And this new album brings new life to many of them.


Caudalie Friends & Family Sale (up to 50% off)

French skincare company Caudalíe is having their Friends & Family Sale, and I will be stocking up on my daily facial wash (seen here – make-up removing cleansing oil). I have shopped a few more items below, but there are many more.

(view 13 French beauty products I love and recommend)

Lora Piano Lilac Striped Cashmere and silk-blend sweater

Theory Bi-Color Cashmere Gloves (more colors)

I feel as though each year I am looking for a better pair of winter gloves for daily use as I just haven’t found the right ones, but this pair caught my eye – made of cashmere and available in bi-colors (many different options).

—Investment Item: Victoria Beckham navy double-breasted checked boucle tweed trench coat


Insecure, the final season premiere

Created by and starring Issa Rae, this acclaimed HBO comedy series centers around best friends Issa (Rae) and Molly (Yvonne Orji) as they navigate the challenges of being Black women who defy all stereotypes. Insecure and Issa Rae have been nominated multiple times for an Emmy and have arguably deserved to win, but either way, her series is worth watching, and she even teaches a Masterclass teaching those who tune in with “her signature do-it-yourself ethos, humor, and voice the motivation and tools they’ll need on their journey. Issa shares how she has navigated Hollywood while Black and inspires you to reach your creative dreams and never take no for an answer.”

Check out the trailer of the final season of Insecure below and tune in as it begins this Sunday on HBO.

What a week!

As I shared on Instagram early this week, I tested positive for COVID and am self-isolating until next Wednesday per the health service worker’s diagnosis regarding when my first symptoms began. I know the source of the contraction, and they have been notified as well as the few people I came into contact with before I began to realize I may be infected. Thankfully, thankfully, thankfully, as I was fully vaccinated (last shot was in February), I only had about three days of chills and body aches, and as I type on Thursday feel 95% in good health. And, as many have asked, I am ever so grateful my tastebuds are able to enjoy food and don’t seem to be affected!

While I was unable to post on Wednesday this week, there was a new podcast episode on Monday, a Saturday Ponderings post this past weekend and a new cooking episode (we made a simple, yet flavor-filled pear + herb galette!), and I took two days to pull together this week’s This & That as I hope to make up for my previous-days absence. Thank you to EVERYONE for your well wishes. It has been much appreciated and Norman remains one of my primary motivations for resting and recovering swiftly as he greatly wants to go out on our regular long outings.

Where there is unwanted events, opportunity can arise and it has. I have time to stay put and focus on book edits, snap pics like the one above for one of the many illustrations for the book (I cannot wait to share with you what we are coming up with – I am working with a new illustrator who knows the blog intimately and whose talent is truly exquisite in detail and knowledge of each specimen she captures), and, inspired by Nigel Slater’s cookbook which just arrived this week, clean out my kitchen drawers and cupboards! ☺️

While I won’t be able to attend the first symphony here in Bend after a long year and a half pause, I will watch it from my home this weekend as they are streaming it live and appreciate it all the more when I do have the opportunity to attend in person. With films and books and writing, the next handful of days will be put to good use paired with some good rest, and come mid-next week, oh my will I be a happy person (and Norman a very happy dog!).

Thank you for choosing to stop by today, and look for a new episode of The Simply Luxurious Kitchen cooking show tomorrow where a favorite French ingredient (not as well- or frequently used in the states) will be used in two different recipes. Below are a handful of links and one video filled with beauty I think you might enjoy. Until tomorrow, bonne journée.

~Stanley Tucci shares how Julia Child changed his life [Time]

~How to approach balance and composition in interior design [House & Garden UK]

~Seth Godin’s thoughts on The Hedonic Buffet

~Renewing your TSA’s PreCheck just became a bit cheaper!

~A podcast episode worth listening to: Brené Brown w/Charles Feltman on Trust: Building, Maintaining and Restoring It

~Speaking of travel, the best times to visit Paris for great weather and fewer tourists [Travel + Leisure]

~Paris and the bikes! Transportation is shifting. If you’re a walker, stay alert! [The New York Times]

~Fall foliage 101: why some autumns are more colorful [Gardenista]

~Add healthy years to your life: what new longevity research reveals [The Washington Post]

~Be swept away by Ted Lasso‘s star Hannah Waddington in her performance of “Memory” in 2010 from the theatrical production of Cats. Long before starring in Game of Thrones and Ted Lasso, Waddington was and continues to be a star in London’s West End musical theatre. Did you know that Hannah’s mother and both of her maternal grandparents were opera singers? Yep. What a gift.

Last Week’s This & That: October 15, 2021

All sorts of new cookbooks, décor books, cozy reads, cozy scarves, an international film I cannot wait to watch set in Sweden, two theatre productions highly praised, clothing sales and fall finds and much, much more. 

~Please note: Affiliate links are present in today’s post and may earn commissions for TSLL. View TSLL’s full Privacy Policy here. | The Simply Luxurious Life

44 thoughts on “This & That: October 22, 2021

  1. Shannon,
    I was so sorry to hear you contracted COVID, but I am so glad to hear you are on the up and up. Hope you find lots of time to rest and have plenty of ponderings! You must have a great nurse there with Norman… I’m certain he is providing as much TLC as possible!
    PS Glad to hear your taste buds weren’t affected. You were fortunate with that, as well as the short duration of the virus. All you have to do this weekend is relax, restore, rejuvenate, and rejoice! xx

  2. Thank you for sharing your recent discoveries with us. Please take good care and rest well. Wishing you much peace in your recovery, Shannon ~

  3. Oh my, so sorry to hear you are ill, I have been distracted this week and just catching up. Rest, I hear, is essential to reduce the days of recuperation. Take great care reading what your body is telling you.

  4. Dear Shannon,
    I am sorry to hear that you are unwell. 🙁

    Thanks for you work on T&T, great as ever. 🙂

    The main thing now is to take care of yourself. I wish you all the best and a speedy recovery.

    I am sure Norman makes an excellent nurse! 😉

    Big hug, all the way from Germany

    1. Thank you Isabel. ? Norman is such a great companion and doing well. He is great motivation the rest and therefore recover swiftly so I can tend to his love for long and curious walks!

  5. Dear Shannon,
    Wishing you a full and speedy recovery. I missed the Instagram post in which you revealed your Covid symptoms; I do hope you are soon enjoying good health once again!

  6. Hi Shannon,
    I am so happy to hear that you are feeling better. It’s been a rough couple of weeks for you, and I hope you get some time to recover, both physically and emotionally. Your recommendations are wonderful to enjoy every week. I just finished Stanley Tucci’s book and his honesty, openness, and his enjoyment of food (and his recipes!) are so wonderful. I’m sending you thoughts of health and happiness (and Norman a belly rub!) Take care!

    1. Tucci’s book did look great. Thank you for sharing why you recommend it. ? I will be resting up this weekend as the more the rest I am told (and have seen evidence of) the quicker the full recovery of health. Thank you for stopping by and have a great weekend!

  7. So glad you’re feeling better!
    Lovely T&T this week. I’m curious if you know where Suzanna Andler is streaming? I looked at prime and apple+ and don’t see it on either.

    Looking forward to listening to Daniil’s Bach album today!

    1. Courtney, great question. I am not sure as I can’t find it yet either. It may just be in France at the moment or small boutique theaters. I will keep my ears open and share anything is I learn where to enjoy it. Thank you for stopping by and have a great weekend!

  8. Shannon, I’m sorry to hear you are ill. Thank you for pushing through with your usually wonderful T&T, but please get some rest! Have a blessed weekend! Hugs to you and Norman!

    1. Of course! Love bringing the weekly T & T to readers each week. Such fun to find each of these items and share. I am even better today, Friday. Grateful I was in good health largely prior-to, so my body took care of me. Now to protect others as I am potentially still contagious and use this time in my own company constructively.

  9. Shannon,
    Thank you for all the goodies today. I am interested in checking out those books!
    I am so sorry to hear you tested for Covid!!! Take good care.
    Have a cozy weekend.

  10. Hey Shannon, So sorry to hear about your COVID diagnosis. Will this thing ever be gone?
    I’m glad you are feeling better, though – and your home is so lovely I’m sure it is not too bad to have to stay home (though not for this reason, of course!); plus you have such a good buddy to help you recuperate.

    Your quick recovery is also very motivating … to get fitter! I’m sure your good health/fitness level helped speed things up. Off for my walk as soon as I post this 😉

    Thanks too for this week’s list of treats; my ‘to read / to watch’ list (notebook!) has grown yet again.

    Take good care,

    1. Catherine, Thank you for stopping by and thinking of you now enjoying your walk!! 🙂 How lucky are we to be able to jaunt out into Mother Nature or simply outside and stretch our legs. So grateful!

  11. Shannon~

    I am so happy to hear that you are on the mend…and that you did not lose your sense of taste. That would be the worst, as I love everything about food.

    So glad you shared Hannah’s rendition of Memory. What a beautiful and talented woman she is.

    Hopefully you and Norman will be back on the trail soon.


    1. Michelle,

      Thank you for stopping by Michelle. Isn’t Hannah Waddington’s voice and prose majestic? I continue to be in awe of her, and her unedited excitement when she won the Emmy just delighted me as I watched and listened to her acceptance speech. Such joy.
      Yep, improving every single day and already up and busy writing and typing away this morning (well, I guess that is clear with this comment response ;)).

      Have a great weekend!

  12. Shannon,
    I too was diagnosed with Covid two weeks ago. While I was a little sicker than you are describing I was grateful for the ability to pause and rest. September, as a school teacher, runs at 100 miles an hour and October at 150 MPH so stopping and realizing that things will get done and there is no rush to get them done did me some good. I was able to teach from home the second week for which I was grateful but I really didn’t like it. I am now back and my students and I are taking our time to catch up with what we need to but mostly I think they missed me and are happy I’m back. At least it seems that way. Be well and thank you for continuing with the posts they are really the highlight of my week.

    1. I am so glad you are doing better! Thank you for sharing your experience. You have described it so well – fall is non-stop for teachers and schools and students. I hope you can find a pace that works for you as you settle back in without being too much. Thinking of you and appreciate your sharing.

  13. I’m sorry you’ve had to go through this illness, but am happy to hear that you’ve gotten through the worst and have been able to recover in the comfort of your home. May you be back to all your favorite activities soon.

  14. Rest well & recover soon. No doubt, the many well wishes & prayers of so many will comfort & uplift you. Thank you for another great This & That post to to end the week & start the weekend. Snuggle up with Norman & have a restful, wonderful weekend!

  15. Echoing the comments of many: glad to hear you are on the mend! I can’t believe you managed to compile another wonderful This & That for us while being under the weather. Not expected but much appreciated <3

    Your recommendation for "The Woman on the Orient Express" got me thinking- if ever you promote a book swap among subscribers, count me in! I'm sure a lot of us love snuggling up with our cozy mysteries, and it'd be even more luxurious to hold the dog-eared copy of a fellow TSLL member or to read a small note from him/her/them on the inside cover. Either way, looking forward to Ashford's book. Thanks for the rec!

  16. So happy to hear that you are feeling better. Lucky to be vaccinated as that would have definitely reduced your symptoms. My daughter lost her sense of taste for over three weeks. Hope Norman was gentle with you during this time. You still came up with a fabulous this and that. The clip of Hannah Waddington brought back many memories of seeing her on stage twice in the West End and her amazing mother at Covent Garden. Looking forward so much to seeing the French Dispatch .Should lift the spirits. I recently bought “Life in a French Country House” and if you’re looking for great photos you will not be disappointed but there’s little text and it’s right at the back of the book. There are only a handful of recipes and all the merchandising is Dior! Wishing you a sustained. recovery. Take care .xx

  17. Shannon,

    I am THRILLED that you enjoyed the movie! I am so happy to hear that you are feeling better! Have a restful and wonderful weekend. 🙂

  18. I am sorry to hear you were down for the count for a bit, but very glad you were vaccinated to prevent an even worse scenario! Norman probably enjoyed the slow down and extra ability to snuggle though. This has been a rough bit of time for you, so take extra care. Thanks for the great ideas!

  19. Dear Shannon,

    I hope you are feeling much better by the time you receive this note! Take good care of yourself. Sending best wishes!

  20. Shannon, just reading This and That and so sorry to hear that you have/had COVID. Hope you are on the mend.
    Watched Bergman island and Things to Come this past weekend and really enjoyed both films
    Take care

    1. Josanne, Thank you for sharing about both of the films! I am looking forward to finding Bergman’s Island. I am doing well. Thankfully, my illness was less severe due to being fully vaccinated. I have self-isolated and will be back out and about in a few days! I cannot wait! 🙂

  21. Glad you’re feeling in better health Shannon! I hope you’ve enjoyed your time at home and all the tasks you were able to tend to. Equally I hope you’ve enjoyed escaping outside again with Norman.
    Loved today’s selection. Things To Come looks great – I love Isabelle Huppert, she’s so elegant.
    Also.. that Victoria Beckham trench is divine – one to look at lustfully and an “if I win the lottery” purchase.
    Sarah x

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