This & That: May 14, 2021

May 14, 2021

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Overflowing with oodles of new and worth-viewing television series, books for travel, décor, non-fiction and fiction. My go-to favorite stocked fleur de sel in my épicerie, summer styles, Burgundy wines and still, so much more.


Design Secrets: How to design any space and make it your own by Kit Kemp

Winner of House & Garden’s Designer of the Year and many other design awards, interior designer Kit Kemp released her new book Design Secrets this past Tuesday. “A unique, lively and informative masterclass . . . Discover how to create character in your home by making the most of the often forgotten details . . . Learn about celebrating raw materials, creating a collection and even adding a touch of magic, as Kit shares creative ways to bring personalized details to make your home as individual as you are.”

Dream First, Details Later: How to quit overthinking and make it happen by Ellen Bennett

Inspired by her own life journey, the founder of a multi-million-dollar company Hedley & Bennett (making aprons and kitchen gear worn by many of the world’s best chefs and home cooks everywhere) Ellen Bennett’s new book (released April 27th) “shares Ellen’s journey and her forged-in-the-fire personal playbook for starting before you stop yourself. If you’ve ever imagined doing something and immediately thought, ‘that’s impossible,’ or ‘I wouldn’t even know where to start,’ or ‘I’m not qualified to do that,’ in these pages, you’ll learn how to shove aside your inner worrier and launch into action. This honest and bold illustrated book will be like having Ellen—your personal hype woman—there with you, all the while yelling, ‘Don’t stop! You got this!'” Check out the contents of her book below.

Meet Me At The Museum: A Novel by Anne Youngson

Released in 2018, and to great praise (“hailed by NPR as “the charmer of the summer”), Anne Youngson’s debut novel at the age of 70 is about a farmer’s wife and a museum curator seeking second chances is one to enjoy. Look for the inclusion of her latest novel in next week’s British Week.

Sunshine Girl: An unexpected life by Julianna Margulies

Happening upon Oprah’s interview with The Good Wife star Julianna Margulies (view on Discovery+), I quickly purchased her autobiography which was released last week. The clip below spoke to my own journey at the moment, and after having read a quarter of the way through, I am enjoying it.

While Justice Sleeps: A Novel by Stacey Abrams

Stacey Abrams’ proposed the idea for her first thriller (but not her first novel, her pen name is Selena Montgomery) While Justice Sleeps more than six-years ago. Turned down because the plot seemed unfeasible, fast-forward to 2021, and the plot looks more like an actual headline of the day. “Avery Keene, a brilliant young law clerk for the legendary Justice Howard Wynn, is doing her best to hold her life together—excelling in an arduous job with the court while also dealing with a troubled family. When the shocking news breaks that Justice Wynn—the cantankerous swing vote on many current high-profile cases—has slipped into a coma, Avery’s life turns upside down. She is immediately notified that Justice Wynn has left instructions for her to serve as his legal guardian and power of attorney. Plunged into an explosive role she never anticipated, Avery finds that Justice Wynn had been secretly researching one of the most controversial cases before the court—a proposed merger between an American biotech company and an Indian genetics firm, which promises to unleash breathtaking results in the medical field. She also discovers that Wynn suspected a dangerously related conspiracy that infiltrates the highest power corridors of Washington.” Editors are praising Abrams story-telling, and after watching her interview on CBS Sunday Morning, I am curious to read it soon.

British Find

Antiques Roadshow (UK), season 40

The UK began the ever popular television concept that is now ubiquitous across cultures – bringing your attic finds to experts and crossing your fingers the value surprises you beyond your wildest dreams. If you haven’t already subscribed to BritBox, as one TSLL reader shared recently, there are so many more shows on their direct app than offered via Amazon Prime. Antiques Roadshow is one of them, and the most recent season available is season 40 (2017). The show wrapped its 42nd season and is creatively taping its 43rd amidst the pandemic, but no matter what the season, this is a series to enjoy.

Grace, BritBox original drama

Also on BritBox is a new original drama, Grace. “The best-selling Peter James novels make it to the screen in this two-part crime drama starring John Simm (Life on Mars, Doctor Who). Haunted by the disappearance of his wife, tenacious yet troubled detective Roy Grace has a reputation for his unorthodox methods in pursuit of the truth. As he walks a career tightrope, he is assigned to a missing person case that becomes a race against time full of twists and turns.” Two episodes are available now (you can also find it on Amazon Prime).

TSLL’s 3rd Annual British Week begins on Sunday!

I cannot wait for Sunday to arrive. Beginning on the 16th, stop by TSLL each day to enjoy two posts each day through next Sunday may 23rd. Six giveaways will be revealed (become a TOP Tier subscriber to be able to enter), and if you are new to this annual Anglophile celebration and wondering what exactly takes place, check out last year’s posts and giveaways.


Bitterman Salt Co, Fleur de Sel

Having well stocked fleur de sel in my épicerie is a must, and when it becomes hard to find in Bend, I am reminded to seek out quality gourmet salt from a local small business located in Portland, Oregon, The Meadow. Dedicated nearly entirely to acquiring a variety of salts for a myriad of cooking preferences, Bitterman’s Salt Company is The Meadow’s go-to brand for not only the traditional cooking salt but many other varietals. Recommended originally to me by Susan Herrmann Loomis, I heeded her advice and am ever so grateful I did. Order online and receive your salts quickly (a matter of a couple of days), or stop into their shops which are a feast for the tastebuds and the eyes (they have two locations).



While originally premiering in late 2019 to independent film events, Christopher Waltz, Vanessa Redgrave and Annette Bening star in Georgetown, set to be released to the public today. A thriller centered around Ulrich Mott (Waltz), an ambitious social climber who marries a wealthy widow in Washington D.C. for his. sole purpose of mixing with powerful political players, the scenes are tense and the concept boggles the mind, but perhaps power and politics breed such a desire? Check out the trailer below.

Francophile Find

Dior small Ladybug vase (green)

When I first happened upon Dior’s ladybug vase, I sighed in awe – too cute and absolutely unique. The price is beyond steep, but one can dream and perhaps be inspired to welcome similar ideas into the home décor for displaying flowers, and for a very special occasion or special person, this gift is worth the splurge. 🙂

A Year in Burgundy

While originally having aired in 2013, Discovery+ has now acquired the rights to the documentary A Year in Burgundy and it is worth watching. (Subscribe to the streaming service and enjoy 7-days for free.) “Seven families discuss the cultural and creative process of making wine in the Burgundy region of France, shedding light on their connection to the land and their grape vines as well as the vagaries of the seasons.” Have a look at the trailer and save to your watchlist. 🙂


Sézane’s Summer Collection

Parisian inspired sustainable fashions, Sézane’s summer collection was recently released and more than a few items caught my eye (I have shopped some below).


Bobby & Giada in Italy

Speaking of Discovery+, premiering earlier this year, Bobby Flay and Giada de Laurentiis pair up and travel to Italy to enjoy the food and each other’s company. Have a look at an overview of the series from Mashable below.


Jean Smart is back and she looks to be in great form – witty, commanding of the screen and brilliantly cast. Premiering yesterday on HBO Max (two episodes are now available to view), the series titled Hacks “explores a dark mentorship that forms between Deborah Vance (Jean Smart), a legendary Las Vegas comedian, and an entitled, outcast 25-year-old (Hannah Einbinder). The ten-episode season continues with two episodes each Thursday for four more weeks, and finales on June 10.” Check out the trailer below.


Yet another much-anticipated new series, this one on Netflix, is Halston. From creator and director Ryan Murphy, this limited series premieres today on Netflix, starring Ewan McGregor. Halston tells the untold story of the meteoric rise and fall of the first American celebrity fashion designer. Have a look at the trailer below.

Mare of Easttown

So many great series are premiering this spring and into the summer, and yet another is Kate Winslet’s leading role as Mare of Easton. On HBO Max with four episodes in the first season (all available now), Mare Sheehan’s (Winslet) life crumbles around her as he investigates a local murder in a Pennsylvania small-town. “The series explores the dark side of a close community and provides an authentic examination of how family and past tragedies can define our present.” View the trailer below. Winslet has been receiving high praise for her role.

Run The World

Highly anticipated and premiering this Sunday (May 16th) on Starz, Run The World is “the story of a group of Black women who work, live, and play in Harlem as they strive for world domination. They’re not only surviving – but thriving together.” Check out the trailer below.

Tiny improvements, small adjustments, done with intention, elevate the everyday experience. From fixing a garage door so that the sensors aren’t blocked by the sun, finally taking the car in to have a minor oops tended to so that it does not worsen, and adding a short walk in the late evenings for an elderly pup to sleep even better through the night, at first glance, it may not seem significant, but in fact, bring much peace for what no longer has to experienced.

As we tailor our lives to help them sing the most harmonious tune for our everyday routines and priorities, gradually, we begin to notice a distinct difference between the ‘now’ and the ‘past’. Before we know it, we begin to realize we have the ability to amass great peace not only for ourselves, but others because when we arrive at work or any occasion where others are present or engage with others in our personal lives, we are appreciative, more present and calmer.

The past week for me sowed up a handful of little fixes needing my attention, and as a result, my days changed for the positive. I hope you too had a week in which you saw positive changes preceded by intentional adjustments. Knowing exactly what those adjustments should be often are easier to recognize when we take time to do what we love. For me, during springtime, it is being outside in my garden. The California poppies are in full bloom in my rockery at the moment, and the flax frame the butter hue with their purple petite gifts. I finally put my mini greenhouse outside this week as the weather is warming up as I need to begin hardening off my seedlings. Hopefully in early June, they will all find their forever homes outside in the dirt.

As shared above, British Week begins in two days and kicks off with a giveaway I hope you will be excited to enter as much as I am to share it with you. I always look forward to TSLL’s themed weeks as I have the chance to discover what you the readers of the blog most enjoy and are drawn to regarding the British culture (and the French culture in August during French Week). I have fewer links this week, primarily because I have so many links and items shared above – there is no shortage for great viewing and great reading this week, wow! – so I do hope you will excuse the temporary brevity; however, I did find two videos I think you will enjoy and have shared them below. Thank you for stopping by this week, and until Sunday, bonne journée.

~France will be opening to travelers soon. Here is what you need to know [Afar]

~Speaking of France, and specifically Paris, Lindsey Tramuta writes about the challenges to reopening Paris’ famous café and bar scene [Fortune]

~Currently in my garden, the allium Globemasters are blooming and magnificently so. I look forward to adding more varietals, and this article is perfect for exploring a list of the best allium bulbs and how to grow them [House & Garden UK]

~The power of the checkmark [The New York Times]

~The date has been announced! Lupin, Part Deux, will premiere on Amazon Friday June 11th! Check out the trailer below.

~The final link and episode for this week’s This & That will “take you to the moon” and put a hop in your step. Enjoy and wishing you lovely weekend.

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

10 thoughts on “This & That: May 14, 2021

  1. I have been searching for some thought provoking viewing, you have provided a very nice selection, the Fly Me To The Moon video reminded me that I miss Flashmobs! While I agree there is a casual elegance to the wedge jute wrapped heel, do you ever wear ballerina flats? No wonder my vertically challenged self is stuck in a rut! Lovely weekend to you and your sweet little old man, 4 years ago I did the same for a 17 year old angel. Isn’t the first bloom of Spring life affirming?

    1. Lucy,

      Thank you for stopping by. Yes, so much viewing to explore. 🙂 To answer you question, I wear flats quite often, yes. Rothys are my go-to as of late for teaching and I also have enjoyed Lanvin. Thank you for sharing your memories of your beloved pup. They are our special companions. Thankful to be able to walk along with him each day. Wishing you a lovely spring weekend of rejuvenation. All my best, xo

  2. I’m so looking forward to British Week! So much fun for your readers!
    Meet me At the Museum looks like a cosy read.
    French Exit was an interesting and entertaining read, really different.

    Logistics question: Today’s post I had to sign in for, some of your other posts I do not. I’m a top tier subscriber. Is this usual? Thank you!

    1. Cannon, You will always have to sign-in if you want sans-ads. If you remained logged in from one day to the next, that is your browser identification and I don’t know how to retain that from each device. The best thing to do is login each time you visit so you can enjoy the blog without ads. (If you haven’t logged in, your 5-post count for the month is added to, and you will be blocked after the five unless you login.)

      Thank you for stopping by. 🙂

  3. The power of the checkmark! Yes! And I think “Start before you stop yourself” will be my new mantra.
    The Dior ladybug caught my eye; I assumed it was a vintage item before I read the text.
    Happy spring,

    1. Deborah, Good morning and thank you for stopping by. The ladybug dies indeed have a vintage aesthetic. Certainly a reminder that vases can be in all shapes and uniques designs. Have a lovely Sunday. 😌💛

  4. Wow – this is a bumper This & That!
    Catching my eye – Meet me at the Museum, Sunshine Girl (grew up with ER and love The Good Wife), Georgetown and Run the World – wow they are beautiful women.
    I had to chuckle when I saw Antiques Roadshow, as a Brit in my early 30s this show on a Sunday night (as well as Heartbeat) preceded school on a Monday morning so most children hate it. BUT as an adult I quite enjoy sitting and hearing about the pieces found and the history that goes with them. It’s always great when something is very valuable and it’s been sitting in an attic!

    About to catch up on British week posts now!

  5. Great viewing recommendations Shannon. Eager to watch Halston as I am a big fan of Ewan McGregor .It will be interesting to see how he plays him as he said that “he did not know anything about him”. Loved his clothes even though I could never afford it .His designs filtered down to more affordable labels so enjoyed wearing copies in the heady 70’s. Looking forward to British week

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