This & That: January 14, 2022
Friday January 14, 2022

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A new look on the blog, and yes, what has not changed is the oodles of good stuff to explore on the regular This & That post. From books on understanding and utilizing the power of the knowledge of our emotions for a better life, a much anticipated French film premieres in the states, a new British series starring Claire Foy for which she is receiving high praise, candles that also offer seeds for your garden, how to work smarter, not longer, a new series starring Stanley Tucci and so much more.

~Please note: We are working on tech issues with the Travel Guide pages. If you are not finding what you are looking for, rest assured, we are working on fixing this issue. 🙂


—Emotional: How Our Feelings Shape Our Thinking by Leonard Mlodinow

Being released on January 11, a book sharing insight into “extraordinary advances in psychology and neuroscience [that] have proven that emotions are as critical to our well-being as thinking. Using deep insights into our evolution and biology, Mlodinow gives us the tools to understand our emotions better and to maximize their benefits. Told with his characteristic clarity and fascinating stories, Emotional explores the new science of feelings and offers us an essential guide to making the most of one of nature’s greatest gifts.” (Amazon, Bookshop)

Joan Is Okay: A Novel by Weike Wang

Much anticipated by critics and readers, being released on January 18th next week, Joan is Okay centers around “Joan, a thirtysomething ICU doctor at a busy New York City hospital. The daughter of Chinese parents who came to the United States to secure the American dream for their children, Joan is intensely devoted to her work, happily solitary, successful. She does look up sometimes and wonder where her true roots lie: at the hospital, where her white coat makes her feel needed, or with her family, who try to shape her life by their own cultural and social expectations . . . Deceptively spare yet quietly powerful, laced with sharp humor, Joan Is Okay touches on matters that feel deeply resonant: being Chinese-American right now; working in medicine at a high-stakes time; finding one’s voice within a dominant culture; being a woman in a male-dominated workplace; and staying independent within a tight-knit family. But above all, it’s a portrait of one remarkable woman so surprising that you can’t get her out of your head.” (Amazon, Bookshop)

—Thursday is the New Friday: How to Work Fewer Hours, Make More Money and Spend Time Doing What You Want by Joe Sanok

Released in October, in Thursday is the New Friday, author Joe Sanok “offers the exercises, tools, and training that have helped thousands of professionals—from authors and scholars to business leaders and innovators—create the schedule they want, resulting in less work, greater income, and more time for what they most desire”.(Amazon, Bookshop)

British Find

A Very British Scandal, mini-series

Starring Emmy and Golden Globe winner Claire Foy from The Crown, and Paul Bettany as Duke and Duchess of Argyll, the BBC One TV mini-series A Very British Scandal depicts “the story of events surrounding their notorious divorce during the 1960s.” Have a look at the trailer below and look for it on BBC One now and hopefully soon HBO Max and Amazon Prime.


The Comfortable Kitchen: 105 Laid-Back, Healthy and Wholesome Recipes by Alex Snodgrass

Released in late December and already a bestseller on the WSJ and the New York Times books list, New York Times bestselling author of The Defined Dish Alex Snodgrassshares recipes designed to bring joy into that display of affection, from your own comfort cooking to your loved ones’ delight at the delicious flavors . . . Alex brings back the joy of being in the kitchen for those at all levels of cooking skill and provides food for every occasion, with soups, salads, pasta, vegetarian and non-vegetarian mains, apps, and sides ranging from one-pot meals to not-so-junky junk food–and even cocktails and desserts–with recipes including: Cajun Chicken and Wild Rice Soup, Green Curry Poached Halibut with Herb, and Herby Green Olive Pasta with Feta.” (Amazon, Bookshop)

Science in the Kitchen and the Art of Eating Well by Pellegrino Artusi 

Upon reading/listening to Stanley Tucci’s bestselling memoir Taste: My Life With Food, he mentions a cookbook that must be in any cook’s kitchen library if they enjoy making pasta dishes, and its title is Science in the Kitchen and the Art of Eating Well. First published in 1891, yep, in the 19th century, “Pellegrino Artusi’s La scienza in cucina e l’arte di mangier bene has come to be recognized as the most significant Italian cookbook of modern times. It was reprinted thirteen times and had sold more than 52,000 copies in the years before Artusi’s death in 1910, with the number of recipes growing from 475 to 790 . . . Artusi’s masterpiece is not merely a popular cookbook; it is a landmark work in Italian culture.” (Amazon, Bookshop)


Van Gogh Portland

Over the past summer I remember hearing about the Van Gogh Immersive Exhibit would be coming to Portland, Oregon. Regrettably, I forgot about it, but then was reminded of it again recently and took note that the exhibit will run through February 12th. If you have yet to experience this unique presentation of Van Gogh’s classic works and will be in NW Oregon, be sure to visit. Tickets are on discount at the moment.

Francophile Finds


Mentioned in August during TSLL’s annual French Week, the film critics are loving and food lovers and Francophiles cannot wait to see, Délicieux (or Delicious in the states) which will premiere today. Look for it in theaters and soon, I hope, on streaming services. Check out the trailer below.

My Stylish French Box, February (La Cuisine!)

Food and France – they just go together. Or should I say good, satiating, eyes-rolling-back-into-your-head delicious Food and France just go together. 🙂 Sharon Santoni’s seasonal Stylish French Box will be sending out the next shipment in February, and this time the theme is La Cuisine. I have received this similar themed box in years past and am still using many of the items I was surprised and delighted to find upon opening the box. Place your order soon as boxes do sell out, and be sure to use the promo code thesimplyluxuriouslife.

Home Décor

Plant the Box Scented Candles

Found at Food52, “these produce-scented candles arrive in biodegradable, seed-infused packaging that lets you grow the plant the candle is based on. Each one is hand-poured from sustainably sourced, clean-burning soy wax.”


DVF Rhodes Collared Sweater in Fuchsia

If you have cool undertones when it comes to your skin, Fuchsia is a beautiful statement color to add to your wardrobe, and this knit top from DVF is comfortable and timeless in its design.

—PLANNING AHEAD FOR SUMMER: Vince Stripe Twist Front Halter Dress, navy and white

Admittedly, this dress won’t be a feasible choice at the moment, but I am looking ahead to summer and travel and leisure and THIS dress fits the bill to a “T”. Pair with leather Tropézienne sandals, a floppy wide-brimmed hat or sunglasses and a market tote, and I am all about it. (oh, and the sunscreen. don’t forget the sunscreen.)

White + Warren Striped Cashmere Scarf (on sale)

Back to winter. This colorful cashmere striped scarf would be ideal to pair with your neutral winter coats. And it’s on sale.


La Fortuna, series

Premiering on AMC+ next Thursday, the 20th of January, the true adventure story about the Spanish ship La Fortuna is told in a mini-series on the streaming service AMC+. “Alex Ventura, a young and inexperienced diplomat, has inadvertently become the leader of a mission that will test all of his convictions: to recover the undersea treasure stolen by adventurer Frank Wild (Stanley Tucci)”. Have a look at the trailer below. | The Simply Luxurious Life

Welcome to the first This & That in TSLL’s new home.

This first week has been quite special as readers’ enthusiastic response overwhelmingly made the work over the past eight months more than worth it. Thank you to all the readers who provided feedback along the way sharing what would make your reading experience better while visiting TSLL. We also tended to a few small details brought to our attention by readers, so hopefully everything is now working as is designed. From the new features of the library of favorite posts, the addition of tailored Comment Notifications so you can engage with each other and myself easily and speaking of This & That, this post will always have its own home on the homepage. When you go back to the homepage, scroll down about a third of the way, and there you will see the most recent This & That as well as the introductory paragraph sharing what you will find when you click-through.

Okay, but back to reflecting on the week. The above image is a pic captured in the finished primary bathroom shower at Le Papillon (shop these traditional Marseille Soaps made with a minimum of 72% olive oil – I purchase mine from this company). Yep, we made it. The bathroom is complete (sans the wallpaper I am waiting for as I ran out of it, as many of you already know – argh!). The first shower experience this week was, I’ll just say it, luxurious, and it was indeed worth the wait. Having wrapped up work with the larger contracting crew, I am now just tending to small finishing touches – soft-close doors, paint touch-ups as well as caulking – with my one most-trusted contractor who stepped in mid-way through the project and just brought a steady calm and clear communication to the entire process. Needless to say, I cannot wait to share a full detailed tour with TOP Tier Members in March, and I will share a glimpse of the finished space in tomorrow’s Saturday Ponderings . . ., so be sure to stop by. | The Simply Luxurious Life

The weekend will find me staying home, thoroughly cleaning the house and doing the final read-thrus of TSLL’s 3rd book – The Road to Le Papillon: Daily Meditations on True Contentment (did you see the cover, did you check out the trailer? You can do so here). Learn more about when and where you can purchase your own copy here.

Norman and I went snowshoeing again this week as well as soaked up sun and gawked at the green grass in the lawn as there is no more snow in town (but the mountain is doing well). I hope you are looking ahead to a wonderful weekend. Thank you for choosing to stop by and do enjoy perusing around the new design. If you would like to take a guided video tour of all that is new – you can watch it here.

Below are a handful of articles to enjoy and until tomorrow, bonne journée.

—American writer living in Britain Jo Rodgers and her husband have spent the past four years renovating a 19th century London flat and readers can now take a tour. It’s quite lovely [Vogue]

~I especially appreciated #6 . . .and #7 and well, all of them – 7 Powerful Yet Simple Metaphors that Change the Way You Think [Marc and Angel]

~If you are trying to figure out how to increase the quality and reduce the quantity of work, you will appreciate this article by Financial Samurai – The Average House Worked Per Week Show Why It’s Easy to Get Ahead

~Having stayed and enjoyed my time at two of the Boutique Hotels on this list, I recommend saving this post if such accommodations are your preference while staying in Paris – The Best Boutique Hotels in Paris: Hidden Addresses [HiP Paris]

~What is it about the character Arsène Lupin that makes him so endlessly appealing? [Air Mail]

~The Duchess of Cambridge looked elegant, regal and as a breath of fresh air in her portrait series shared this week in celebration of her 40th birthday. Read about the story behind Kate Middleton’s Alexander McQueen Birthday Gowns [Vogue UK]

~Good news! France is beginning to relax UK travel restrictions [The Local]

~Speaking of France, Follow the footsteps of French Artists Across France [The Local]

~One more taking us to France – 12 Useful tips for your next visit to a French Food Market [David Lebovitz]

~100 Ways to Slightly Improve Your Life Without Really Trying [The Guardian]

~This article just caught my eye when I saw the headline – Why Prima Ballerinas Are Turning Away from the Tutu [The Guardian]

~I believe this may be true – Cable TV is the New Landline [The New York Times]

~9 Ways to Get (and Stay) Present as an Overthinking Introvert [Introvert, Dear]

~While we are now a couple weeks removed from New Year celebrations, you may be thinking you should have made resolutions. Nope, hold firm and read this article for confirmation – New Year’s Resolutions Are Not the Vibe for 2022 [The Atlantic]

~But, I think we all want to make this year great, so how about reading this article – The Secrets of Successful Aging in 2022 [The New York Times]

~5 Areas of Personal Growth and How to Improve Them [LifeHack]

~How to live in less fear [Shondaland]

~This Norwegian film has been getting quite a bit of buzz. And while not out yet (look for it in limited release on February 4th), already I am greatly anticipating watching it. Have a look at the trailer below and follow Julie (Renate Reinsve) over the course of four years in a new modern dramedy “about the quest for love and meaning in contemporary Oslo. Julie navigates the troubled waters of her love life and struggles to find her career path, leading her to take a realistic look at who she really is.”

Check out the previous This & That: January 7, 2022

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

27 thoughts on “This & That: January 14, 2022

  1. Shannon, if you can get yourself to the van Gogh exhibit, do it! It came to NZ last year and it was well worth it. I was a little disappointed with the sunflower room, but the visual part that was accompanied to music was amazing.
    I can also vouch for Délicieux. I saw it last year at our annual french film festival and loved it.
    Great post, as always! Have a lovely weekend xx

  2. As always, this week’s This and That looks very interesting. I have been so busy this last week that I am finally getting a chance to scan through the site. It is easy to read, well organized, with many features that will surely make navigating articles easier. I do like the fresh new look as well. I can’t imagine how much work and planning went into making this come alive. Bravo! The category headings in this post make scanning very easy, the color, is soothing as well. Like an afternoon in the garden, it has a nice calming effect to the content. All in all, a really nice presentation.

    I have been an olive oil soap advocate for years. There is a local shop here that sells about everything you can imagine made from an olive oil base with herbs and essential oils added. Having painfully dry skin my entire life has led me to much experimentation. So far, well at least for the last 5 years or so, this is my winner.

    Major snowfall headed our way over the weekend, I will have time to read!

    1. Lucy,

      Thank you for stopping by. I appreciate your specific feedback. As well, thank you for sharing why you have chosen to use olive oil soaps. I too have found, as I have been using these soaps since September, my skin is never dry after using them, and I live in quite an arid climate, and the expense is far less than the body wash I previously used and the soaps last an incredibly long time. I don’t see myself ever going back.

      Wishing you a cozy, snuggling in weekend with your pup and husband. Stay warm and enjoy a few days of relaxing. Grateful you stopped by. ?

  3. Shannon,
    I really enjoyed your newsy This and That today. Thank you.
    I could not see a link for the olive oil soap. I have been a bit confused by the number of sellers of this product and I would love to see where you purchase.

    1. Rebecca,

      I do apologize. The wrong link accidentally was placed in the post for the soaps. I have now corrected it in the post, but for a quick click, here is the link to shop –

      I have purchased directly from them for the soap seen in the pic, and this shop comes recommended from David Lebovitz as well. Thank you for bringing this fix to my attention. I do apologize for any confusion.

      Have a wonderful weekend and thank you for stopping by. ?

  4. Thank you for all the great tips, Shannon, and congratulations on the new layout of the blog. Looks very good! For a Norwegian it ‘s really exciting that you are recommending a Norwegian film. Doesn’t happen outside our borders that often. Have a lovely weekend!

  5. When I click on a link my connection to simply luxuriously Closes and so when I go back it counts it as a new entry meaning I’m not really getting the 5 posts I paid for. Very frustrating.

  6. Very good this and that today as usual. I am a top-tier subscriber and I’m seeing some ads that I didn’t think were supposed to appear. I guess as you said you’re working out the kinks. Hopefully they will go away because they’re annoying:)

    1. Hansgirl,

      Yep, we’re seeing them too and we’re logged in. The tech team is working on it. I do apologize for this as this is not what we want either. 🙂 We will get it fixed, it just may take some time. Thank you for your patience and gentle comment. 🙂

  7. Congratulations on the new blog and completion of the primary bathroom! Both were labors of love and will reflect your authentic self.

  8. Hi Shannon,
    Congratulations on your new blog design! When I click on any of your travel guides I get a message that says “Oops this page does not exist”. I am very interested in seeing your travel guide to Portland, as well as others. Thanks!

    1. DEToole,

      Thank you for bringing this to our attention. We are on it!!! My apologies. Not sure what happened, but those pages do exist – somewhere! We’ll find them and relink. It may take some time, but it will be fixed.

    2. DEToole,

      Good afternoon and good news! It was me who made an error and deleted something I shouldn’t and then the Travel Guides went caplooie – However, all is fixed and you should be able to go back in and travel to Paris!

      Thank you for your patience and have a wonderful weekend,


  9. Just catching up on todays This and That post …….the glimpse of your new tiles makes me look forwards to seeing the completed bathroom…….they look lovely.
    I’m enjoying exploring the new site …..I used the enlarge font button today, and being able to read in larger type was really helpful Shannon, thank you .
    I’m looking forward to reading the weekend links ?
    Thank you for another really interesting ‘This and That ‘
    Have a lovely weekend
    x Anne x

  10. Finally having a minute to sit down with a pot of tea (a single cup is just not going to cut it today!) & relax while browsing through the new TSLL. LOVE your new look, Shannon. Not only is it an aesthetic delight, all the tweaks & upgrades make it a joy to navigate. I especially appreciate the “Add to Favorites” option & the new archival layout — so much easier to find something I read a week or two ago & want to go back to. Also, when life gets busy & complex, as it’s been for me since the start of the new year, & I miss days & days-worth of your posts, it’s great to be able to go back and read them in order when I finally do get the time (which I’m doing today; I’m not caught up yet but jumped ahead to make a comment here before going back a week or two). Looking forward to your big bathroom “reveal” — the glimpses I’ve seen are very exciting.

    For the record I’m seeing no problems with my log-in (or unwanted ads) on my desktop & laptop computers w/ FireFox & Win10, both up-to-date; I never use a phone to access the site & open links in new tabs, so that may explain my trouble-free experience.

    1. Susanne,

      Thank you very much for your comment and tickled you know you needed a pot of tea! Oh! You made me smile when I read that. 🙂

      Thank you for sharing how the site is functioning for you. I think we may have fixed all of the tweaks that needed our attention. We’ll keep a close watch though to make sure all continues to function as it should. Enjoy perusing and glad to know TSLL is a respite that brings calm. Have a lovely weekend.

  11. Another lovely list Shannon. You must be going into the weekend feeling very thrilled that all your renovation efforts have come to fruition. I have not seen the Van Gogh’s exhibition but my friend has and she sent me some shots and highly recommends it I think you will enjoy it. Loving the new layout and the option to enlarge the font as Anne noted but I find the print a little on the light side. Maybe it’s just me. Love the idea of a seeded candle .You can prolong the sent for a long time to come. You can also get candles with little jewels in them. I received one with a little necklace for my birthday.
    I also read and appreciated Marc and Angel’s seven powerful yet simple metaphors and agree with you on #6 & #7.
    The 12 useful tips on visiting a French market was written by The Real Emily in Paris for David L. Very accurate and useful .
    Your Marseille savon looks perfect in your bathroom. Cannot do without that soap. I also use the liquid savon Noire
    ( black) for cleaning. A little goes a long way.
    Wishing you and Norman a lovely weekend. Kameela xx

    1. Hi, I view on my tablet and there’s an option to switch to high contrast (black and white). Don’t know if that helps.

  12. Great look and organization of the new blog format. I’m sure they will get the kinks worked out soon. My only suggestion to consider is making the type a bit darker. It appears very light and kind of hard to see clearly. This seems like a trend with blogs these days to have very light type. The cover of the new book looks beautiful! I’m looking forward to reading it. Have a great weekend!

  13. Shannon, I watched “A British Scandal” over Christmas and really enjoyed it even though the Duke and Duchess were both rather unlikeable. I did go away afterwards to check how much was fiction as it was fascinating. Clearly in the 1960’s women were treated very differently from now. Enjoy.

  14. I can wholly recommend to anyone considering attending the Van Gogh exhibit it is a worthwhile trip. I attended late last year and thoroughly enjoyed it.
    Thank you for the Jo Rodger’s article, I really enjoy following her on Instagram and enjoy her writing. Her home is gorgeous.
    I loved the metaphor article too, the tangerine and cracks in the bucket resonated and will stay with me. I choose to see flowers!
    Hope everyone has a great week

    1. Sarah, I remember when you went and shared your experience. I have kept that in my memory. I do hope I can get back over to Portland in time before it closes.

      Yes, and weren’t those metaphors thought-tickling?

      Jo Rodgers is a fun and down-to-earth writer. A joy to follow for glimpse of both country and London living at a slower pace.

      Thank you for stopping by and have a wonderful week!

  15. Thanks for another set of great inspirations!

    My favourites this week: Claire Foy (always!), Mr. Artusi cooking book, Vince stripe halter dress.

    I can vouche for Savon de Marseille from Shannon’s suppplier.. I grew up with it and use it everyday. The smaller bars are also practical for shower.

    I also like very much the cover of the TSSL next book, and forgot to mentioned that previously.

    Have a great week, everyone! 🙂

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