1. This Flight Crew – In August Flight AA 372, traveling from Dallas-Fort Worth, TX to Phoenix, AZ, staffed entirely with a female black flight crew, flew in honor of aviator and veteran Bessie Coleman.
Coleman was born on January 26, 1892 and was the first black woman and Native American to receive a pilot’s license and the first black woman and Native American to receive an international aviation license from the Fédération Aéronautique Internationale.
She did have to go to France to do it though because flight schools in America at the time prohibited both women and black people from applying. After she honed her skills she returned to the U.S. where she because a star as a barnstorming stunt flyer, dubbed “Queen Bess.”
2. This Series – Last summer I was slightly obsessed with the series Blood & Treasure. It aired on CBS and was the perfect show for the summer – a little mystery, a little romance, and a lot of adventure. Kind of like Indiana Jones mixed with the Oceans movies mixed with the Librarians.
This year it’s only airing on Paramount+. Now I have Paramount+ but the problem is I didn’t see it advertised anywhere so I only found out it was airing at all about a week ago. It actually started in July. At least if there is a season three it’ll pop up for me now (fingers are crossed.)
3. This Updated Version of Courtney Cox’s Tampon Commercial – LOVE IT!
4. These Crispbread Crackers – There is regular or a gluten-free version. I’ve been having them for lunch with either cream cheese or goat cheese, sometimes I add capers and salmon or cucumbers and radishes.
[Found at Trader Joes]
5. This Instagram Post – Qasim Rachid is the best.
6. This Coffee Maker – This is why I always say that Volkswagen is (or at least was) the greatest car maker in the world – the VW Beetle.
7. These Beautiful Pickled Veg – This is from my favorite food vlogger Beryl Shereshewsky‘s Instagram. I’ve mentioned her before in a past Seven Things. Her next post is going to be on pickling things. Can’t wait! (Also, I need to learn how to make vegetables look this pretty.)
Before I get started I wanted to remind everyone that today is an important national holiday. It’s National Coloring Book Day! So be sure to pause and do some coloring at some point (well, tomorrow I suppose, but better than never, right?) And if you don’t have any coloring sheets handy, you can print out a mini-coloring book here courtesy of Dover, one of the oldest purveyors of coloring books and stickers and other fun little artsy publications. OR if you are looking for some unique, irreverent and sassy coloring books, look no further than this list. (Though don’t order them from Amazon, be sure to get them from your local bookseller or Bookshop.org.)
But more film makers are starting to take comfort into consideration when creating costumes and I suspect that has a lot to do with the fact that more women are involved in the costume making.
For example, here’s a post by Sophia Di Martino who plays Sylvie in the show Loki (which has been my favorite Marvel shows/movies to date.) Sophia is showing how her costume was altered to make it easier for her to be able to breastfeed while working. Kind of pathetic that this is newsworthy/a big deal in freaking 2021 though. Sophia’s costume also covers her body completely (not the way she’s wearing it below obviously, she has it zipped open to show you how she can pump!) It’s much more practical for climbing, jumping, running and fighting off the bad guys.
2. This Video by Olympic Medal Winner Tom Daley – I mean, if there wasn’t already enough to love about this guy – did you know he knits? Could he be any more adorable????
[Found via the Guardian which was sent to me by my friend Kathy – thanks KK!]
3. These Olympics Commercials from Toyota – Honestly, watching the commercials during the Olympics is almost as good as during the Superbowl. (The first one is visually amazing!)
4. This Guest Host on Jeopardy – A LOT of people want Levar to be the permanent host and I’m in that camp!
5. This Bird Installation – Sadly it came down yesterday, and I didn’t get to see it in person, but how cool is this?!?! I love all the art going up around Milwaukee.
Special thanks to my friend Ami Bedi who took the first photo.
6. This Photo Recreation by Tracee Ellis Ross – Fabulous! (For those who aren’t aware, Tracee Ellis Ross is the daughter of singer Diana Ross and music executive Robert Ellis Silberstein.) I think this is a wonderful tribute for a daughter to do for her mom, even if her mom isn’t Diana Ross.
Here’s the original from a ’70s editorial in W Magazine (which Tracee Ellis Ross labeled “No. 1: MAMA”) –
Here’s the recreation (which Tracee Ellis Ross labeled “No. 2: ME”) –
7. This Instastory of Florence Pugh Cooking – I love her to pieces! She’s so down-to-earth and FUNNY. And I always learn at least one thing every time I watch one of her videos.
Here’s possibly my favorite video of hers, which was a fancy-schmancy one done by Vogue, where Florence tries 11 different English Foods. Wonderful!
1. This Comedian’s Solution to Gun Control – So simple. I’ve only recently discovered Steve Hofstetter and he’s hilarious. I start watching his videos on YouTube and end up watching for hours.
By the way, I bought a small portable (annotated) version of the constitution which I carry with me. I’ve been surprised at how often I refer to it. Originally I got it because I wanted to be like RBG – but I never thought I’d actually use it. Turns out there’s a very practical reason for carrying one around and it’s no surprise that Justice Ginsburg would know that.
2. This Roundabout Mural in My Hometown of Dubuque – I’ve never seen this myself but then I’ve not been “home” for a few years because, well, you know why. I was curious to see if this was a thing, if maybe artists were doing this around the US or even around the world but I couldn’t find any others (admittedly I only did one search.) I did, however, find that public traffic sculptures are a thing.
3. This Video Clip from Sesame Street – most of you who grew up on Sesame Street will remember John John. Be sure to watch all the way through and see if you don’t have a big smile on your face when this is over.
4. This Video from 1949 about a “Step-Saving” Kitchen, from the Department of Agriculture – Created for farming families, the video is pure vintage delight. Set aside for the moment the whole housewives (only) do all the cooking thing, and focus on the design aspect. There are actually many things I wish were standard components in today’s kitchens. The cookbook holder on the inside of the cabinet and the garbage hatch were two things I was most impressed by.
I also loved the counter height analysis. I wonder if they still make “pull-out boards”. As a taller person I find most counters are usually too low for me.
A few last thoughts… the video made me miss the “olden” days, just a little bit. Things like having a landline in the kitchen and the little desk you’d sit at while taking a call. I also thought it was interesting that they chose to have a woman narrating the video even though it was about architectural design. It’s a little bit of a relief to know that in 1949 they didn’t feel it would be necessary to have a man present the plans. I realize it was for something considered a “woman’s world” but it would have been the man making the decisions and paying for it.
5. These Hand-Painted Wallpapers – Anyone who knows me knows that I’m wallpaper junkie. And chinoiserie wallpaper, especially hand-painted chinoiserie wallpaper, well, it makes my heart go pitter-patter. When I bought my current house (it’s my Golden Girls’ Dream House,) I knew I absolutely had to have wallpaper put up in a few of the rooms. And so I did and in my opinion, the wallpaper I chose is magnificent. But admittedly, none of it can compare to these.
Chinoiserie (or China Style) “is the European interpretation and imitation of Chinese and other East Asian artistic traditions, especially in the decorative arts, garden design, architecture, literature, theatre, and music.”
The story of how de Gournay began could possibly be movie-worthy:
Started in 1986, founder Claud Cecil Gurney started de Gournay following an unsuccessful search for experts to restore the antique Chinoiserie wallpaper in his family home. His passion for art and Chinese history brought him to China where he investigated the possibility of working with local artists to replicate the pieces he longs for in his home.
Once in China, he quickly discovered the government’s preference for mass design, making traditional hand painting of wallpaper a dying art. In an effort to save the vanishing tradition, he widened his search and eventually located artists whose parents, grandparents and ancestors had been trained in these specific techniques and who shared his wish to continue the traditions.
6. These Peeps Sandals – My friend Leann made these for Easter. I think they are adorable! Full disclosure, she said that it’s a bugger to work with marshmallow (even marshmallow that you’ve allowed to harden) and a glue gun.
7. This Training Video for Wendy’s Employees – Only in the 80s. It was a simpler time. MUCH simpler. (Still, this brought me much happines.)
Word of the Day
Quote of the Day
“All grown-ups were once children… but only few of them remember it.
1. This Couple, Annie Kampfe and Cliff Donnelly, Who Built a Miniature Mid-Century House Based on the Homes They Grew Up In – who doesn’t love miniatures and someone who put this much into the details of a Mid-Century home – I mean, it really would be every kids dream house, right?
2. This DoorDash Commercial – I don’t know about you but there is something quite comforting about the idea of being roomies with Cookie Monster. Yeah, he’d make a mess when he ate, yeah, you’d have to hide the cookies, but how cute is he sitting there on the sofa, reading next to Daveed Diggs?!?!
3. This New(ish) Television Series, Resident Alien – based on a comic book series, Resident Alien takes a fairly common premise – alien invasion – and turns it upside down. In the SyFy series (which stars Alan Tudyk, most famous for his role as Hoban ‘Wash’ Washburne in Firefly, though I also love his ‘Steve the Pirate’ in Dodgeball: a True Underdog Story, one of my all-time favorite movies) is an alien who crash lands in Colorado while on a mission to actually destroy planet Earth. In the crash he loses some of the equipment he needs to destroy earth because it’s winter and it gets buried in the snow, somewhere on a rather large mountain.
Without alien equipment he has to go old school and look for it by walking around and digging, which he knows could take weeks. He decides he will need food and shelter and luckily finds a remote home on the lake. Not so lucky for the homeowner, it isn’t abandoned. The alien kills the man and disposes of his body in the lake but also takes the human’s form in case he’s noticed while searching for his lost equipment.
Soon after though a murder occurs in the nearby town and the victim is the town’s only doctor. The people in the town need someone to help them with the autopsy and guess who is the nearest doctor, yep, the guy the alien killed and transformed himself into.
What is most hilarious I think is that there are a couple kids in town who can see through the facade. I can’t remember what the explanation was – I just took it as being something like in the Polar Express and why kids could still hear the jingle bell. At first there was only one boy who could see him and the alien decided he was going to have to murder the kid. But the kid was a bit more of a challenge than he anticipated.
Anyway, it’s an excellent show! The first episode was a little slow but it has only gotten better and better.
You can watch the trailer here. OR if you really want to get drawn in, here are the first 7 minutes.
4. This COMPLETELY FABRICATED Series Called Tiny Secret Whispers‘ that Seth Meyers Has Been Gushing Over on His Show for the Past Three Weeks – Sorry Stephen, but Seth has officially become my favorite late night host. His impressions, his banter with his staff, long running jokes like the Thorn birds, the Sea Captain and now this. It’s sheer brilliance and it keeps his audience tuned in every night.
5. These Waterproof Notepads, Aquanotes – I’ve found that I think most clearly in the shower. I suspect it is because there is no distractrations. I’ve tried for several years to find the best way to keep track of my thoughts and ideas. I moved in an Alexa. I bought a waterproof recorder, a few different ones actually. But nothing worked because everything that I bought required me to then take transcribe what I dictated and that was a pain. I finally found these and they have been the best solution. They keep me from rambling (as we know, that is my tendency) and then I can rip off the page, take it to my desk and get it all taken care of without having to listen to a recording first. They are a little pricey but after you buy the first pencil/pad set for $9.75 you can get refills, 3 pads for $26, so it’s a little over a dollar less per pad.
6. This Response from LeVar Burton on the Decision by Seuss Enterprises to Discontinue Publication of Six of Their Titles – Who is better qualified to speak on this topic than Mr. Reading Rainbow himself (and of course ST:TNG’s Geordi La Forge)? You should watch the entire interview and listen to his full reply. It’s exceptional.
“Actually, I think that, in the general sense, once you know better, it is incumbent upon you to do better, and that’s exactly what Seuss Enterprises is doing here. They are being a responsible steward of the brand and they looked at these six titles and determined that in the light of today, they really don’t fit with the values that we’ve all come to know Dr Seuss for. Look, all of our heroes are human; they are all flawed. It’s one of the things I learned from Gene Roddenberry, one of my storytelling mentors. Gene was a guy who had this great vision, but he also wanted all the women in short skirts, so our heroes are flawed.”
7. This Website that Drives You Around Most Major Cities of the World – called Drive and Listen, the website will make you feel like you are sitting in a taxi in one of over 50 cities in the world. You can choose whether you want to include street noise (why wouldn’t you?!?) and a local radio station. Unfortunately you don’t get to choose the radio station but that only makes the ride more realistic.
Word of the Day
I came across a great list of female related words (most of which I will be using in the future so I’m not going to include the link.) I’m starting with this one. The root of the word, vir-, is Latin for man, such as in the word virile. Don’t you find it interesting how one definition is a nagging shrew and the other is strong, heroic woman?
1. This new female-hosted science show, Emily’s Wonder Lab (thanks Stasie!) – move over Mr. Wizard (okay, he passed away 13 years ago but you get where I’m going with this), step aside Bill Nye the Science Guy (we still adore you), get out of the way Beakman (you’re still the geek we all had a little bit of a crush on), Emily Calandrelli (aka The Space Gal) is here and she’s gonna make some waves and some goo and some rainbow bubbles and some barfing pumpkins and some… all while pregnant!
3. This Geico Commercial “Aunt Infestation” – I told you I have a thing for commercials. This is by far the best Geico commercial EVER!!! And I’m not saying this just because I’m an Auntie. These women are hilarious.
4. This hometown candy shop: Betty Jane’s Candies – people from Dubuque, Iowa are very familiar with Betty Jane’s. And now that it’s cooling down outside, you can enjoy Betty Jane’s too because they ship everywhere! They are most well-known for their Gremlins, which are similar to turtles but 1000x better. Trust me. And now you can get them in either milk chocolate or dark chocolate or both! Back when I was younger it was only milk chocolate (but then I was a kid so like I cared.) They also have Snacker packages in 6 and 12 oz that are less expensive than getting them in the box (but also, more difficult to keep yourself from eating too many.)
It’s also Caramel Apple season right now – but I’m sure you need to order quickly if you want to get some of those.
I recently though, have found myself addicted to their dark chocolate covered almonds. Over the summer I couldn’t order from them because of the heat and so I attempted to find a comparable dark chocolate covered almond – tried at least two dozen brands (even had to toss out a few of them), not a single one came even close.
5. This new app by Kevin Costner (swoon) called HearHere – HearHere is great for people who take lots of road trips. You get to hear stories about the places you drive through, some of them are actually narrated by Kevin Costner himself. It’s pretty cool.
6. This Last Video of ABBA – rather than trying to figure out all of this and rewriting it myself I’m cutting and pasting the information from an ABBA site I found:
“The four ABBA members reunited (kind of) in the humorous film Our Last Video, where they each filmed a (silent) appearance lasting just a few moments each. The film was shown during the interval of the Eurovision Song Contest’s Semi-Final on Wednesday 12 May 2004 to celebrate the 30th Anniversary of ABBA’s Eurovision win. Most of the script of the film was made up of ABBA song lyrics.
Agnetha and Frida filmed their parts separately although they were edited to look like they appeared together. Björn, Benny and Agnetha filmed their parts in Stockholm while Frida filmed hers in London.
The Last Video is the film about four hopeful musicians (a set of ABBA puppets made by Henson Creature Shop Limited who made The Muppets) in search of a record contract. They pay a visit to the Big Record Company Boss and his oily assistant, performing one hit after the other, cheered on by their manager. But things don’t really work out as planned and as they leave, “the real ABBA” arrive (in footage taken from ABBA – The Movie) in the lift as the puppets leave.
The film was produced by Radical Media UK and filmed at Independent Studios AB at Saltsjö-boo, outside of Stockholm; and directed by Calle Åstrand. Apart from the puppet versions of Agnetha, Björn, Benny and Frida (which in reality are about 50cm tall), the film starred:
From Abbaontv.com https://abbaontv.com/programmes/2004/39875
7. This Podcast, Sistory Untold – this is SUPER cool. These two London-based sisters started a podcast during quarantine and it’s absolutely brilliant. They were trying to come up with a topic that was unique and relevant at the same time so because they are part of a big family of sisters they decided to cover famous sisters in history. And by sisters, they don’t mean they have to be blood relations, simply women that had relationships that affected history.
“Importantly, they focus on the women’s relationships rather than the men they were associated with, from Hamilton‘s Schuyler sisters to Jane and Cassandra Austen to 18th-century rivals Maria Coventry and Kitty Fisher (as seen in Harlots on BBC Two).”
I meant to post this last night but I wanted to proof-read it and it got too late. You see, yesterday I had to straighten up my house because I have my cleaning person coming back after being away for almost eight months. I’m so excited!
It’s kind of a long story but when I moved four years ago into my “Golden Girls Dream House” I knew that this was going to be the last house I lived in until I died (or went into a home). I figured I needed to make it exactly what I wanted it to be and that meant it had to be big enough for my family and friends to visit and to have parties. That also meant that I had a fairly large house for one person and cleaning it by myself wasn’t an option.
Enter my amazing cleaning people. Course when the pandemic hit they could no longer come so I’ve been doing everything myself. I asked them, back in June, to restart cleaning but unfortunately they are short a person. I’ve been waiting until they could get me in. Last week we worked it out that they could come less frequently and only clean the kitchen and the bathroom. Originally I was told Friday but then yesterday I got a text and was asked if it was okay if they could come this morning instead. Heck yes! Knowing their situation I have to be flexible.
I remember when I was a kid my Mom would always spend nearly a day straightening up before our cleaning person came over. I used to think she was nuts. But now that I have a cleaning person myself I totally get it. You don’t want them wasting their time straightening up, you want them to be able to focus on the cleaning part. Sadly, after months of isolation there was a bit more straightening to do than usual.
And so my friends, that is why my “Seven Things I Love” post is a day late.
This Meme Comparing Generations – Eerily accurate. I fall on the cusp of GenX and Boomer. Though I most definitely identify as GenX, lately my Boomer side has been starting to show. Maybe I need more gin. Nah, fewer attacks on democracy would be better.
2. The Dole Fr*it B*wls Commercials – I’m not sure if these ads will become as popular as the Geiko ones but some of them are pretty clever. I really love this one in particular – with the two Moms showing what real-life families are like and then asking, was it your idea to have kids or mine? The expressions on their faces is what really makes it so wonderful, it captures so much – love for one another, resignation, and exasperation. (Side note, this commercial aired over and over again a week ago Sunday on the Hallmark Channel during a Jane Doe Mysteries marathon. Hallmark seems to be on board with the LBGTQ thing. They aren’t stupid.)
3. This biopic about Harriet, Tubman of course – this biographical film is amazing. What I liked most – though it spends a good amount of time showing the atrocities inflicted upon the people kept as slaves, it spends an equal amount of time showing Harriet’s success with emancipating others after she herself has escaped slavery. It’s tremendous. So many films like this would spend the entire thing on just her journey to freedom and then would go to a black screen with a message that would say something like,
Harriet Tubman made 13 total trips to Maryland, saving 70 people on her missions. She continued to be known as the “Moses of her people.” She served as a scout, spy, guerrilla soldier, and nurse for the Union Army during the Civil War. She died at the age of 93 surrounded by her family and friends and was buried with military honors at Fort Hill Cemetery.
But we wouldn’t get to experience the joy of seeing the rescues – that is the gift of this movie. I know that a lot of our heroes suffered and even shed blood for causes that meant so much to the world today but we need to see more films that show both the good and the bad.
(I will say this though, with what has been going on this past week, these past several months, when you do watch this movie, you will find yourself horrified that things haven’t come so much further in 170 years.)
4. This Cartoonist, Jackie Ormes – who was the first female African American cartoonist popular in the 30s, 40s, and 50s
She is being honored in the September 1st Google Doodle and it’s really wonderful. Take a look.
5. This article (which is excerpted from a book) on How to Identify Pebbles on Britain’s Beaches – what drew me to this initially was the drawings (by one of my favorite artists, Eleanor Crow) but the idea that someone would actually try to identify the various types of pebbles was fascinating to me. I would have thought that pebbles were as unique as snowflakes, but apparently not. The original book, The Pebbles on the Beach, was written by Clarence Ellis in 1954. Studying rocks and beaches is something that people, particularly Brits, have done for a very long time. There is a new film coming out called Ammonite, starring Kate Winslet and Saoirse Ronan, about British Palaeontologist Mary Anning and her romantic relationship with Charlotte Murchison. It looks like a must-see film. Mary Anning definitely knew that there were different types of pebbles on the English beaches.
6. This Last tweet from Chadwick Boseman’s twitter account, posted by his family, announcing his passing. It has become the most-liked tweet in Twitter history. So a propos for a regal man and the King of Wakanda.
7. This Evian Commercial: Baby Reflection – just so damned cute. (I’ve always had a thing for commercials, so you know. I think some of them are like mini-films/works of art and some are so damned funny so don’t be surprised if I include them.)
1. This Doritos commercial with Lil Nas X and Sam Elliott – Sam Elliott is 75 years old and still sexy as hell. (And yes, I know that isn’t actually him dancing, but I don’t care. I’m going to believe it is.) Yowzah – I like dancing cowboys!
2. Sam Barsky – oh to have even an ounce of this guy’s talent, and his patience! So Sam has a fantastic back story which you can read about in the article here, but long story short, this guy knits sweaters of places he’s going to go visit and then has photos taken of himself wearing the sweater in front of the place… well, you get the idea. It’s just so very meta. I love things that are meta (and not just because I have a friend named Meta.) Sam has a Facebook page too.
Also, this particular item is especially for my friend Kathy. Cuz I know you’ll love it.
4. SistaStrings singing ‘Lift Every Voice‘ – this recording was made at Silver City Studios in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Just glorious. It makes my heart ache, but in a good way.
5. Last, but definitely NOT least, this AMAZING video of People Looking at the Moon. It sounds simple enough. This guy, Alex Gorosh, brought his high-powered telescope outside one night because he was bored and it resulted in a video that will bring tears to your eyes. The reactions are all the same – truly genuine and pure. It makes it even more obvious that people in our country, in the world, have many more similarities than differences.
I’ve been collecting quotes for ages so it occurred to me that I should start ending my ‘5 Things’ with one of these little nuggets of wisdom (or humor). Here’s the first one.
Well, as you may (or may not) have noticed, I’ve been on a brief hiatus from posting the ‘Five Things I Love’ because of course I’ve been traveling in India! I still have more India posts to make (along with general Menopausal Broad posts) but I wanted to get back to sharing some of my favorite things…
1. How many of your watch ‘Drunk History’? I LOVE history (if you haven’t figured that out already.) I love how so much of it fits together and overlaps. I also find it interesting how a lot of history repeats itself – which is frustrating and infuriating and alarming.
Anyway, if you don’t know about ‘Drunk History’ it’s an incredibly painless and funny way to learn about our past. The guy who came up with the idea, Derek Waters, gets people liquored up and then has them tell you about a brief chapter in history. While this is going on people act out what the drunk person is talking about. Obviously hilarity ensues – especially when the actors are, for example, giving some speech or making some important statement (which is made in the drunk person’s voice) and all of a sudden there is a belch or the words are slurred.
2. Did you watch the Superbowl just for the commercials (like I did because the Packers weren’t playing?) Here’s the story behind that commercial thanking the University of Wisconsin – School of Veterinary Medicine, Oncology Unit.
3. We’ve all read bad yelp reviews. Sometimes they can be helpful. Sometimes they can be funny and/or ignorant. And sometimes they can be mean, bordering on cruel. Amber Share, an artist from Raleigh, North Carolina read some bad reviews of our magnificent National Parks and decided to use her artistic talent to prove just how ridiculous (and petty) some reviewers really are…. (Found on the Southern Living website.)
4. This article about Gen X – is brilliant. Basically it’s: We’re Gen X, we know who we are, we know what we like, and we have no intention of changing for anyone.
There is a little bit of a disagreement as to exactly when GenX begins and ends but generally it’s around 1964/1965 to 1979/1980. Obviously people born in 1964 and 1979 feel very strongly that it goes from 1964 to 1980.
The fact is, people born in those years would definitely NOT fit into the Boomer generation or into GenY. In fact, people born in 1963, 1962, 1961, and probably 1960 and then four years on the other end (1981-1984?) probably identify more with GenX.
5. Thymes MilleFleur Reed Diffuser – reed diffusers are a complicated thing. You can buy inexpensive ones at places like Pier One (well, not so much anymore) or Target or Anthropologie but sometimes you don’t get to test them out and even if you do, they don’t last very long. Or you can spend a wad on a more expensive diffuser but you run the risk of investing in something that may again, not last long. Or you may find that the scent isn’t as nice as it was in the store (because of course there you’re surrounded by many other scents.)
I have been addicted to Thymes Frasier Fir products for ages, ever since my aunt introduced me to the candles. It’s the best holiday scent around, still after all these years. But I wanted to find something for the rest of the year. On a fluke I ordered the Millefleur and boy, did I luck out. Not only has it lasted months, but every single person who has come into my house has commented about how good my house smells. (I have it near the front door.)
It’s not overpowering but strong enough too that I get a whiff every once in a while when I walk past the foyer. I highly recommend it if you like floral scents…