This & That: June 2, 2023
Friday June 2, 2023

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Discover French finds from books to cookbooks to season premieres of shows, as well as summer clothing finds for both men and women to keep you stylish, timeless and comfortable. Three novels and a non-fiction book to shape up our eating to improve our mental health from an author whose previous book inspired a favorite podcast episode that aired last summer on The Simple Sophisticate. Unique décor finds for the home and garden and a British series arrives on PBS Masterpiece starring a favorite actor (from Annika). As well, there is still more!


Hedge: A Novel by Jane Delury

Being released on June 6th and included in Oprah’s Review of Spring Books to Read, Hedge tells the story of Maud who is a talented garden historian and devoted mom to daughters Ella and Louise. Motivated to reignite her career and escape her troubled marriage, she accepts a summer job restoring the garden of a lush, 19th century estate in the Hudson Valley and then the story begins to unfolds as she experiences temporary independence that eventually creates a seismic shock to her life and those around her.

A Quitter’s Paradise: A Novel by Elysha Chang

There has been much talk about A Quitter’s Paradise as of late, and its release on June 6th is NPR’s Critic’s Pick for the Summer. The novel revolves around Eleanor who appears to be is doing just fine. However, she’s keeping secrets from her husband, has quit her PhD program and is now conducting unauthorized research on illegitimately procured mice. And, true, her mother is dead, and Eleanor has yet to go through her things. “Resisting at every turn, Eleanor tumbles blindly down a path toward confronting her present. As Eleanor’s avoidance of her feelings results in a series of outrageous—often hilarious—choices, her actions begin to threaten all she holds most dear. Meanwhile, glimpses of Eleanor’s childhood and family history in Taiwan unfurl, revealing long-held secrets, and Eleanor starts to realize that she will never be able to escape her grief, or her family, despite her wildest attempts. But will she be brave enough to withstand the reckoning she’s hurtling toward?”

Starring Adele Astaire: A Novel by Eliza Knight

Another book being released on June 6th and included on many summer reading lists is a historical novel inspired by Fred Astaire’s sister Adele. Set in the Roaring 20s, “Adele Astaire was a glittering, glamorous star, dancing with her brother, Fred, endearing herself to audiences from New York to London. But although she is toasted by royalty and beloved by countless fans, Adele Astaire has dreams of a loving husband and a houseful of children. And when she meets Lord Charles Cavendish, her wishes may just come true—but at what cost?”

Unprocessed: How the Food We Eat is Fueling Our Mental Health Crisis by Kimberley Wilson

In August this past summer, Kimberley Wilson’s book How to Build a Healthy Brain inspired episode #336 of The Simple Sophisticate podcast, one of the most listened to episodes of the year. Wilson’s second book dives deeper and more specifically into the food we eat and how it affects or harms our mental health. Unprocessed, released in the states on June 1st shares the science of how “nutrition has more influence on what we feel, who we become and how we behave than we could ever have imagined . . . psychologist Kimberley Wilson draws on startling new research – as well as her own work in prisons, schools and hospitals around the country – to reveal the role of food and nutrients in brain development and mental health: from how the food a woman eats during pregnancy influences the size of her baby’s brain, and hunger makes you mean; to how nutrient deficiencies change your personality. We must also recognise poor nutrition as a social injustice, with the poorest and most vulnerable being systematically ignored.” 

British Finds

Agatha Christie: Lucy Worsley on the Queen of Mystery (UK only or BBC Two)

A series I cannot wait to arrive and be available in the states is one that I know some of TSLL’s UK readers have already seen, but I wanted to share with you today just in case you haven’t watched it and might want to. A three-part series, pairing with Worsley’s bestselling biography Agatha Christie: An Elusive Woman (a wonderful read if you are curious about the author), discover details never before known as Lucy Worsley does what she does best, engages the audiences and walks us through the lives her subjects lived. Have a look at the trailer below and stream it in the UK now.

Death Comes to Marlow by Robert Thorogood, book 2 in the series

The creator of the favorite tv series on BritBox Death in Paradise, Robert Thorogood began writing a mystery series set in modern day England, specifically Marlow, and the second book came out in January. Now it is available in paperback and for the first time either version is finally available in the states. My copy just arrived yesterday and it is the cozy mystery I always like to have on hand when I want something fun, light and engaging. The second book in the series is described as “giving the Christie-mystery a busy-body twist. Judith (our favorite skinny-dipping, whiskey-sipping, crossword puzzle author), along with Becks the vicar’s wife, and Susie the dogwalker find themselves in a head-scratching, utterly clever country house, locked-room murder mystery.” Like I said, sounds like fun, non? 😉

Sophie Conrad Large Grey Wire Harvesting basket

Harvesting in the garden our rhubarb, strawberries and many other late spring veg is beginning to happen, and having either a classic trug or perhaps this wire basket is a must-have. Sold in the UK, but delivering internationally, Sophie Conrad’s shop is one I have shopped before and highly recommend.


Zara St. Lazare Metal Clip-On Lamp (four colors)

If you have a spot in your home where you like to read or would like a little bit more light, but nothing harsh, this clip-on lamp may be just the solution from Zara.

Francophile Find

Enchanting Paris: The Hedonist’s Guide by Hélène Rocco

I just received my review copy of Hélène Rocco’s new book Enchanting Paris and with it being released on June 6th it is up-to-date with must-see places in each arrondissement to suit your pleasure-seeking temperament on your next trip to the City of Light. With beautiful photography readers will discover “essential insider details, cultural information, must-see attractions, and detailed maps with glorious custom photography—including 350 full-color images”. Described as “the ultimate handbook for modern nomads, including both savvy travelers and novice tourists, the twenty-first-century globetrotters will appreciate the many treasures this book has to share, even if you have visited the city many times before.

The French Art of Living Well: Finding Joie de Vivre in the Everyday World by Cathy Yandell

Currently reading and recommending (one of the many books shared in June’s A Cuppa Moments w/Shannon video chat), Cathy Yandell is an expat living and working, specifically teaching in France. Yandell is a professor at Carleton College, teaching courses in French and Francophone literature and culture, contemporary cultural and political issues in France, and the French language. And her new book is full of “those ineffable qualities that make up the joy of living, taking readers on a voyage to France through forays into literature, history, and culture. How does art contribute to daily life? Why is cuisine such a central part of French existence? Why are the French more physical than many other cultures? How do French attitudes toward time speak volumes about their sense of pleasure and celebration? And finally, to what extent is this zest for life exportable? These and other questions give way to a dynamic sketch of French life today.” I think you will very much enjoy this personal, yet insightful book.

The Parisian Agency, season 3, Netflix

The third season is back and it is expanding beyond Paris this go-round. While I have to admit, I wish the producers would tone down (or turn off) the background music when the leads are talking, this is a fun series that brings viewers on a vicarious excursion to Paris and the real estate market, but also, now, the luxury markets in other fabulous international locations.


Banana Republic Cypress Cashmere Hoodie (seven colors)

I haven’t forgot the men of TSLL! I saw this new cashmere hoodie and thought, yes! What a wonderful layering piece for the mornings or evenings during the summer months.

Banana Republic Pauline Linen Midi Dress (two colors)

This dress. So simple, and can absolutely be worn just as it is, but you can also wrap it with a belt (and I have shopped one for you below!).

Banana Republic Milo Linen-Blend Shirt, men’s

One more from BR, this stylish linen-blend shirt with a touch of detailing for the men. A capsule wardrobe must for the summer as it pairs well with just about everything and will keep you cool and looking en vogue year after year.

PawPaintsUS, tea cozys, Etsy

Last week a reader on IG shared a picture of a tea cosy that immediately caught my eye. Handmade by PawPaintsUS, these fun anglophile staples for enjoying a hot pot of tea may just be right up your alley. I have shopped a few of the fabric options, but be sure to peruse the entire page as there are more.

Shirtini Khaki Slim Belt

This belt from Obi, available at Shirtini is narrow, yet statement making, neutral so it will go with many outfits and timeless so it can be used year after year.


Marriage, PBS Masterpiece

Released last year in the UK and mentioned here on a past This & That, US viewers can now watch this praised series starring Split and Annika star Nicola Walker and Sean Bean who stars as her husband. Have a look at the trailer and watch all episodes on your PBS Passport app or watch a new episode each Sunday on PBS Masterpiece.

Slipping away to the farmers’ market in the middle of the day and week is a treat I have been relishing most Wednesday’s this May, and one of my first stops is always at the local flower stand to see what free seasonal blooms are available. This week some sweetpeas were available, and their scent was scrumptious, so they, along with some fruit and veg, came home with me.

Having fun in the garden this past week, and no doubt inspired by both the gorgeous weather and watching oodles of coverage of The Chelsea Flower Show last week, I tended to a small project adding walkables and moving some pavers to create a more cottage”y” feel back on the west side of my house that enters into my potting area (check out my garden IG account @lepapillongarden and tap on the Highlights for Garden ’23 to see what I was up to), as well, I ate the first strawberry from my garden – wahoo! nd sat on the front porch often this week to soak up the sun whilst writing a post or beginning or ending the day to relax.

Found on the front porch stoop is this pot filled with annuals that is happily growing quite well. The bacopa with its violet blooms and the varying textures were something that with each day of maturity becomes even more lovely (sweet potato vines and white licorice are also potted).

French class continues to humble me, and I will be working on dialogue about the weather this weekend now that I have a full vocabulary to share le prévision (forecast) as well as le météo actuelle (current weather). As I type, il fais beau et il y a soleil (it is nice and there is sun). And while il pourrait y avoir un orage cet aprés midi (there might be a thunderstorm this afternoon), if there is, I look forward to savoring it with a cuppa and perhaps sitting on the porch swing to watch the show.

I hope your short work week went well, and the first weekend in June arrives with you ready to savor it whatever plans you may be looking forward to partaking in. Below I have gathered up a few posts and a couple of videos (one linked, one shared) that you might enjoy, and if you haven’t already read this Monday’s Motivational post, many readers shared some wonderful thoughts and discoveries regarding their own life journey on the topic – Discover a Way of Life That Harmonizes with Your True Self – and be sure to watch this month’s A Cuppa Moments w/Shannon that was posted yesterday for TOP Tier Members, as well as the monthly Smile post – 17 Things That Made Me Smile This Month. Until Monday, bonne journée.

~Enjoyed listening to this podcast episode of Gardeners’ World where Head Gardener Tom Brown shares ideas for making your garden beautiful this summer.

~A recipe for Lemonbalm Shortbread to pair with your summertime tea [PBS]

~If you will be in Paris this June, here is a lovely long list of things to do in the city [HiP Paris]

~And if you will be in Paris and prefer Gluten-Free, here is a guide book for you from The Real Emily in Paris.

~And for those who love a good proper scone but prefer GF, Amazing Gluten-Free Scone recipe from A Garden for the House.

~Looking for the best baguette in Paris in each arrondissement? Look no further! A map from Ville de Paris.

~How to have an introvert-friendly summer [Introvert, Dear]

~The Cannes Film Festival wrapped up in May and here are the best red carpet looks. [The New York Times, gift link]

~The finał episode of The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel aired last Friday and oh, was it a jam-packed episode. I thoroughly enjoyed it and appreciated how everything wrapped up. Here are thoughts from the cast on filming the final scenes. [TV Insider]

~Take a tour of this historic Brooklyn Townhouse restored by Sandra Bullock. [AD]

~A new month and a new Tips & Advice post from Monty Don for gardeners.

~Spring is still upon us, and that means it is asparagus season! Here are some recipes to explore from House & Garden UK.

~Short, but helpful, food for thought from Seth Godin on what memetic desire is and how to best use it in our daily lives.

~I do appreciate British interior designer Nina Campbell’s words of wisdom when it comes to dos & don’ts of decorating [House & Garden UK] Tour Nina’s home in London here.

~Guess what and yes, it is true! Kim Cattrall will be appearing in the new season of And Just Like That! Learn more about how it was kept quiet even from the crew until moments before filming began. Look for the solo scene to appear in August of the series.[Variety]

~And, speaking of And Just Like That, the second trailer of season 2 was just released and even more is shared . . .

~Explore last week’s This & That: May 26, 2023

As it is TSLL’s Annual British Week after all, so you will find nearly every (but not all) finds being British-inspired. From cookbooks to cooking classes, tours of King Charles III’s official residence in London, acclaimed series, a new mystery film inspired by Agatha Christie’s writings, just released garden books for gardeners and of course, the most famous event for gardeners in the UK, plus British brand clothing finds from scarves, suits, dresses and trenches and sales on a trusted makeup company I use regularly, a sale for lovers of the beach-side décor aesthetic and a new film starring Julia Louis-Dreyfus that looks to be worth watching. And yep, still there is more!

~Please note: TSLL is supported by you, readers who take the time to stop by (merci!), peruse and sometimes welcome into your life mentioned and recommended finds. Affiliate links are present in today’s post and may earn commissions for TSLL when you purchase. View TSLL’s full Privacy Policy here.

21 thoughts on “This & That: June 2, 2023

  1. Love your suggestions this week. I am almost finished with Cathy Yandell’s book The French Art of Living Well. Her love of the French people and culture comes through loud and clear. Can’t wait to see Sean Bean and Nicola Walker together. That should be great.

    Bonne week-end! Are you going to continue your French classes this summer or take a break?

    1. Thank you for stopping by today Nancy. Indeed, Cathy’s affection for the French culture is sincere and full of curiosity. I haven’t decided yet about a summer course. The conversational weekly class is the one I am pondering. Wishing you a wonderful weekend as well. Bonne journée and à lundi! 🙂

  2. Beautiful post-market photo! I just have to ask, what are you planning for the beets and radishes? Do you wear plastic gloves when working with the beets?? Radishes are a tad strong for me so I’ve roasted them in the past to make them sweeter, but would love to know what you do with them. Thanks!

    1. Melissa,

      Thank you for stopping by! Actually, these are all radishes, and it is the ones I find at the market that I love- a bit of bite and flavor rather than just crunchy as I find most grocery store ones are when out of season. I eat them as a snack – on their own, dipped in hummus or rolled in French butter and flaky sea salt. Regarding beets, I don’t wear gloves, but that is a great idea! I love a good beet salad. There are so many great ways to enjoy that vegetable. Have a great weekend!

  3. Shannon~

    I am looking so forward to reading The French Art of Living Well as soon as I finish A Well Lived Life. I have devoured so many books about the lifestyles of the French and learn something new with each one.

    Thank you for sharing Marriage, as Nicola Walker is also a favorite of mine. Now that several series I watch are complete, I am needing a new series to go along with Father Brown. I am still downcast over the loss of Ted Lasso. I was crying in the first 14 minutes of the finale and have been humming So Long, Farewell ever since. Like you, I am very much looking forward to Agatha Christie: An Elusive Woman’s arrival here in the States.

    What darling tea cozys! I have my eye on one that will go nicely with my teacup.

    Planning to bake your Lemon & Orange Pound Cake this weekend. I am sure it will be as lovely as the Strawberry Rhubarb Tart was.

    Enjoy your weekend!


    1. Michelle,

      You were not alone regarding watching Ted Lasso. I thoroughly enjoyed that episode, and from the first scene, we know how it will end (generally). They don’t dangle doubt, but at the same time, it gave us the entire episode to really savor, and savor I did. Such a great message (or should I say messages) the show put forth and it will be missed.

      Thank you for stopping by today and I do hope you enjoy the pound cake. One of my favorites!

    2. Ohhhh, Lemon and Orange Pound Cake! I’ll have to look that one up, thanks for sharing, let us know how it turns out please.

  4. See, this is why I find it intriguing to be here. I can motivate myself to keep up with my losing weight by seeing the possibilities of dreamily floating in the carefree linen midi dress, as I’m strolling aimlessly through my gardens holding my gathering basket, while passing by and gazing proudly at my newly planted tree peonies. All the while smiling, as I leisurely make my way to the back porch to sit and ponder on how to think like a philosopher, in this introverted life I lead. Because isn’t that what we tell ourselves; the stories of how we want to live, of how we want to be.

    By the way, I have several places in the newly designed beds out front that I wasn’t sure what to do with, but seen your link for the tree peonies, and it turns out they will be a perfect fit for one space. I’m thinking of doing a set of three in an wider open triangle in one front corner, so that passerby’s will still be able to peak past the metal fencing, but not too much. 😉 so thank you for that, it helped to spark ideas.

    Have you read, The body keeps the score by Bessel van der Kolk M.D. I bring this up because I have found that not only does the food we eat impact our mental health, I’ve learned this by reading about microbiome that jump started from Dr. Whals protocol, but that the trauma we have faced in our lives, meaning trauma in many forms, has an impact as well. We are fascinating complicated creatures, but at the same time so simplistic in our connected design.

    You are a gift my dear Shannon. I applaud you for taking the chance.

    1. Yes, yea, yes!! Your first paragraph, all that you shared and envisioned, yes! It is possible and will happen. Your tree peonies sounds gorgeous! What a great idea and I love that you are planting them for others to enjoy as well. 🙂 Thank You very much for your kind words and wishing you a beautiful weekend just as you wish it to be.

      1. I believe you may be a kindred spirit; one of romanticism, one of dreamy dreams, and one of longing possibilities that take the imagination on journeys not yet pondered. Does that sound about right?

  5. Some very interesting suggestions again this week Shannon. I believe I mentioned here some time ago that I keep a little notebook with lists of books, television, and movie suggestions that pique my interest. When I have time to read or relax after dinner there is nothing like a nice little murder mystery with a tart little lemon cookie and my tea to help me gear down for the evening. Thanks as always, have a lovely June weekend. Is there anything more glorious than June in the morning or in the evening for that matter?

    1. Lucy,

      You absolutely right. June mornings and evenings are quite lovely. I like how you wind down the dayZ that sounds soothing and quite wonderful. Thank you for stopping by. Wishing you a wonderful weekend. 🙂

  6. Absolutely brilliant T&T. You strike such a lovely balance of internal/deep work and levity. Now, I need to find a way and a place to keep track of the items, television shows, books, etc…. 🙂

  7. Hi Shannon! In my daily reading of ‘The Road to le Papillon” (sorry about the quotation marks, I’m not sure how to adjust the font for a book title), I read your recommendation for Create Academy. Just wondering, have you taken just the one course, or several? There are so many categories that interest me, I thought you might have some advice on what to pursue.

    These types of courses are exactly what I am looking for, advice from experts on “how-to” many different aspects of my luxurious life. Thanks for the suggestion!

    1. I did take the on3 from Rita Koenig and highly recommend. It is mine to go back and watch as many times as I want. My mother has taken one of the cooking classes by Amelia Freer? (cannot recall her last name off the top of my head) and found it very helpful and full of ideas. There are a few other decor classes I would like to take in the future. Grea5 question! I Hope that helped somewhat. 🙂 So tickled to hear you are enjoying the book!

      1. The book is in my morning pile to read daily! I get such good ideas from you. Of course, this is my second year through the pages, and I honestly was thinking that I might feel like, “been there, done that” for each of your passages and suggestions, but no! It is as fresh as the first time through it!

        Your connections to links of past posts, once I jump in, is where I learn new things. I just completed certification for 200-RYT yoga teaching instruction, and was looking for my next learning experience. Now I am “over the moon” with the variety and quality of topics and instructors available to me in Create Academy. You’ve done it again! Have a great weekend, and hi to Norman and Nelle!

  8. Shannon, I have already watched the Agatha Christie series and it was so interesting. Definitely a must-watch. Lucy is a brilliant presenter and brings the story alive. Marriage is also a good watch but quite dark in place. We’re so lucky to be able to access such great tv here in the UK. I’m looking forward to soaking up the continuing good weather in June. X

    1. Nicola,

      Thank you very much for sharing this info about both series. I was wondering about Marriage. Nicola Walker plays such roles extremely well – she can be both deep, dark and dramatic as well as light and fun. Wishing you a wonderful first week in June and thank you for stopping by. 🙂

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