This & That: July 23, 2021
Friday July 23, 2021

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The return of a favorite comedy series, a sale on the classic French Breton stripes, a new film inspired by a true story, the kick-off of the Olympics, books for décor guidance, working with Mother Nature in your backyard, inspiration for living well, and a simple, yet must-have beauty item for your daily routine. Yep, still there is much more.


The Dry Brush, Kate McLeod

One daily beauty item I use and have used for more than 12 years now is a dry body brushed. As shared in my first book – Choosing The Simply Luxurious Life, a simply daily ritual of sloughing your dead skins away, not only exfoliates, but also rejuvenates and the skin cells underneath. Kate McLeod’s new dry brush is a savvy purchase at a great price.


Nature’s Best Hope: A New Approach to Conservation That Starts in Your Yard by Douglas W. Tallamy

A New York Times bestseller, published in 2020 and fully illustrated, Nature’s Best Hope “shows how homeowners everywhere can turn their yards into conservation corridors that provide wildlife habitats . . . it’s practical, effective, and easy—you will walk away with specific suggestions you can incorporate into your own yard.”

Notes on a Nervous Planet by Matt Haig

Currently Matt Haig’s most recent book is soaring up the bestseller lists – The Comfort Book (included in this week’s This & That). His novel, The Midnight Library, also did quite well which made me want to go back and revisit his 2019 title – Notes on a Nervous Planet. “Looking at sleep, news, social media, addiction, work and play, Matt Haig invites us to feel calmer, happier and to question the habits of the digital age. This book might even change the way you spend your precious time on earth.”

British Find

Ted Lasso, season 2 premiere

Perhaps you’ve heard of coaches and those in leadership positions taking lessons from Ted Lasso? If you haven’t, it is true and for good reason! As NPR reported earlier this week, coaches are taking note from Lasso’s (Jason Sudeikis) adherence to building relationships with his players and the power of positivity. The second season has been receiving wonderful reviews, and it premieres today on Apple TV+. Check out the trailer below.


Simon Pearce Nantucket Hurricane (four sizes)

Summer time finds us outside more often and late into the evening as well. While classic glass hurricanes can be used indoors, their use outdoors adds a bit of magic to the evening.

Farrow and Ball: Recipes for Decorating by Joa Studholme and Charlotte Crosby

I recently heard the current head of Farrow and Ball, Joa Studholme on The English Home’s first episode of their podcast earlier this month (mentioned in last week’s T & T), and so I went back at took a look at her book Recipes for Decorating. Published in 2019, the book is “a primer on winning color combinations created for every room of the home. At the heart of the book are fifteen case studies of inspirational interiors — a city apartment, a country cottage, a seaside escape, a schoolhouse repurposed for residential use – which are explored to reveal how selecting the right range and combination of colors creates a harmonious whole. For each case study there is a detailed color palette that acts like a recipe with a menu of ideas to copy. Color is then considered room by room, showing how to combine color with light and space to get the most of every area of the house, be it a large kitchen, a cozy bedroom, or a relaxed study.” So if you are working on any home project and are befuddled by the multitude of color choices, this book may be of some assistance.


Joe Bell

Premiering at the Toronto Film Festival in 2020, “Joe Bell tells the intimate and emotional true story of an eastern Oregonian father (Mark Wahlberg) who pays tribute to his gay teenage son Jadin (Reid Miller), embarking on a self-reflective walk across America to speak his heart to heartland citizens about the real and terrifying costs of bullying.” The events that the film depicts took place in 2013 in LaGrande, Oregon, and a detailed article written in yesterday’s Oregonian shares the full story as well as the response from the family about the film. The film is opening in theaters today. Check out the trailer below.

Francophile Find

Vivi et Margo Rustic Farmhouse Egg Baskets

French online shop Vivi et Margo now has an Amazon Shop, and it’s worth checking out for easy shopping. Their wire egg baskets (three different sizes and two different styles – see the collage at the top of the post), offer a simple way to add a touch of your love for France paired with organization containers to your home décor.

Sézane Jack Leather Sneakers (more colors)

A simple, chic sneaker is a good idea to have on hand for somewhat casual occasions that still call for a touch of polish.

St. James’ bi-annual sale

I had to bring your attention to France’s St. James’ regular sale. Find their classic Breton shirts, dresses and accessories reduced 20%.


Gallery Leather Day, Week and Month planners

Finding the right planner takes time. And if your work-life routine changes, sometimes changing your planner is helpful as well. While I thought I had found the planner for me as 2021 began, I realized I need a daily planner rather than a weekly as I take copious notes, like to see my daily schedule linearly laid out and appreciate the focus keeping everything only for one day gives me.

Not wanting to pay an extraordinary amount of money for something that will be used only for a year (sorry Smythson – beautiful, but I cannot afford you), I had a clear idea of what I needed, and I finally believe (I will know more in the coming months after having used it for a while) I have found the company that speaks my language.

Based in Maine, this small company makes a large array of sizes, offers oodles of colors – leather and non-leather, and can include your initials or lines for organizing your years. I chose to include my initials in the bottom corner only in an imprint on my daily planner, but you can make them stand out in gold or silver. I also chose on my monthly desk planner (the bottom green – slightly larger planner) to include the year of the business for tax purposes as well as reference guides when I want to compare years.

Now you are asking, how much.

I purchased my 2021 (I jumped in mid-year) for fewer than $13, and my 2022 (the brown day planner in the middle below) for $38. The monthly desk planner (due to the color I chose) was fewer than $11. AND what I love about the monthly desk planner is that it includes 18 months. It begins July 2021 and runs through December 2022. 🙂 You can see many more interior pages on their website.

As for me, I will be organizing my planners this weekend, and I cannot wait. 🙂

J.Crew Zoe Ballet Mules in Suede (more colors)

When I first saw J.Crew’s mule ballet slippers, I thought just that – perfect for at-home, around-the-house slippers. And that is still what I think; however, they are made to be worn outside of the house as well. 🙂



Opening ceremonies are tonight! What a perplexing and chaotic time, and while there are many opinions about whether or not the games should have happened this year, the athletes who have put in the years of training and dedication and navigated through all of the safety requirements are there to do what they do, and I look forward to cheering them on.

~Nigel Slater’s recipe for orecchiette and broad beans – aka an herby veggie pasta :)~

Hello Friday! And hello to the most ideal summer weather in Bend. Low eighties, clear blue skies, warm days, cool nights. I am framing these days in my mind as I know how fortunate we are to have them at the moment.

As the sunflowers around Le Papillon begin to open up and share their beauty (as seen to the right), each evening I do my best to spend time out in the garden taking it all in as in just a couple of month’s time, the seasons will shift. Chatting with neighbors, petting each other’s pups as they mosey about on the sidewalks while we water our plants and pots for the day, and tending to any little garden task that needs our attention but isn’t too strenuous, these are the activities of summer leisure and I treasure them.

The chairs for my office were picked up to be reupholstered this week, and while I sit now on older, less comfortable chairs, knowing what will return in a couple weeks’ time makes it more than bearable. 🙂 Planning for French Week wrapped up this week, and I cannot wait for August 8th to arrive. There will be six giveaways for TOP Tier subscribers, at least two posts each day the entire week, and two new podcast episodes. Mark your calendar’s for this 6th Annual Event – August 8th-15th. And be sure to consider becoming a subscriber – BASIC Tier enjoys unlimited reading of posts (except exclusive posts – giveaways and home tours) and TOP Tier has the opportunity to enter all giveaways exclusively and read ad-free whenever they stop by all of the content on TSLL.

The weekend has in store a slow start to Saturday enjoying a new episode of Gardeners’ World (as there was no episode last week, and I more than ever became aware of how I enjoy this ritual each weekend), painting the ceiling of the guest bathroom (see the color choice here), giving myself a much-needed facial, and maybe heading out for an early morning paddle with Norman as the weather, to repeat myself, is ideal at the moment.

If this is the first time you’ve stopped by this week, the past seven days have been quite full here on TSLL blog beginning with last Saturday’s 10 Saturday Ponderings . . . , the third podcast bundle – all about savoring living single, a second Outfit of the Month for super essential item savings, and 8 ideas for finding inspiration in the latest Couture collections and Monday’s Motivational post, this week inspired by a trail Norman and I explored.

Thank you for stopping by today, and I hope you have a wonderful weekend. Below are a handful of articles and posts, along with a trailer for a film I cannot wait to finally debut later this fall. Until Monday, bonne journée.

~The art of weekending [Heather Bullard]

~Save for your next trip to Paris – 5 Parisian museums with fantastic views [Paris Unlocked]

~Just a friendly reminder to wear sunscreen everyday during the summer for sure even if you’re not going outside – 7 of the Best sunscreens for your face [Wirecutter], I still recommend La Roche Posay’s face sunscreen (even though it’s not included on the list)

~How to set weekly goals to change your life [Lifehack]

~If you have a subscription to AirMail, this article is worth reading – Cinderella’s New Groove – about Oscar-winning writer Emerald Fennell’s approach to writing the script for a new musical adaptation of the classic story.

~Just in case you need a boost to revel in your happiness being an introvert, this is a lovely essay to read [Anna Lovind]

~As an avid walker, this article made me smile! How walking can build up the brain [The New York Times]

~The power of a truth to understand – emotional contagion: Those who share a roof, share emotions [The Atlantic]

~Love sandwich cookies? Um, yep – an ice cream sandwich please! – Then check out these 5 recipes from Voraciously

~France and the fourth wave of the virus. Catch up on the new adjustments to their health pass here. [France 24]

~A lovely interview with Kate McLeod (founder of her eponymously named skincare company) about her new understanding of wellness [The Cut]

~A favorite post – Core Principles to Live By When It Comes to Finances – from one of my go-to financial blogs [Financial Samurai]

~A wonderful read for Francophiles, Art Lovers and History buffs – The Louvre’s art sleuth is on the hunt for looted paintings [The New York Times]

~Coming this fall to a theater near you! Oh my goodness I cannot wait! Julia Child Documentary from ‘RBG’ Filmmakers [Deadline] Check out the trailer below. | The Simply Luxurious Life

9 thoughts on “This & That: July 23, 2021

  1. I have a cousin who is an interior designer. When I was looking for the right shade of blue for my house at the beach she suggested Farrow & Ball Borrowed Light and was she right. I started with one room and ended up painting the entire first floor this beautiful color. I love their color palette. Of course, now I am working on getting the rest of the house painted because it looks so dull compared to the first floor. I love your This & Thats every week. Thank you.

    1. Thank you for sharing the color that worked for you. I have heard all positive feedback on Farrow & Ball’s paint. And for paint to inspire you to paint even more rooms is quite a compliment! Thank you for stopping by today and have a lovely weekend. 🙂

  2. Hello Shannon! I have used Gallery Leather planners for about ten years now and absolutely love them. I used the Desk Weekly calendar for years but recently switched to the Desk Monthly calendar and find it gives me the exact amount of space I need.
    In our highly digitized world, I enjoy having a physical calendar and love that Gallery Leather fits the bill: chic, afforable and easy to use. I am sure you will enjoy yours!

  3. Shannon I agree with you on the Olympics. The athletes have worked so hard and the hosts have done incredible preparation so all we can do is show our support. So glad you’ve found Farrow and Ball. I’ve used their paints for years and and I just love the colour palette. The application and finish are excellent. Pottering in the garden in summer is a delight as most of the preparatory work has begun to show results. I have had some failures this year in the potager owing to the heavy rains and very warm weather. My favourite summer pastime in the garden apart from harvesting the crops is dead heading the roses. i find it so calming. Looking forward to la semaine francaise.. We now have to show our Covid passports before we can enter a cafe , restaurant and other public spaces, as without it we will not b allowed in. . Have a great weekend xx

    1. Kameela, I smiled upon reading about the calming ritual of dead heading roses. Me too. In the evenings, and sometimes in the morning, I love this simple, yet ever-so helpful necessary task. I have been hearing about the shifts in France. Thank you for sharing how it affects the everyday citizen. And as well sharing your experience with Farrow & Ball. Wishing you a lovely weekend. Thank you as always for stopping by. 🙂

  4. Currently selecting colours to decorate my bedroom and Farrow & Ball is being considered.
    There was a documentary on about the company recently here in the U.K. and Joa featured in the programme helping people select the best colours for their homes. It was really interesting!
    I hope your weekend decorating went well.

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