Tag: Travel (Page 1 of 2)

Seven Things I Love (5-16-2022)

1. This News Media Source – They had me at their mission statement:

To expose abuses of power and betrayals of the public trust by government, business, and other institutions, using the moral force of investigative journalism to spur reform through the sustained spotlighting of wrongdoing.

These people do old-school investigative reporting. The media bias sites say that PROPUBLICA “leans left” but ProPublica has won FIVE Pulitzers so you judge for yourself. (The most common “criticism” is that ProPublica doesn’t cover issues that are of concern of conservative and/or get conservative perspectives. I think with the way things are right now, there’s a reason for that.)

2. This Cool (and Clever) Trick with Coins – Those Brits, always doing stuff like this. But I’m bummed, I have a bunch of English coins but most of them are too old! The only new one I have is the one pence (or penny) coin, which is the copper colored one on the left. I’ll need to stock up next time I’m over (if that ever happens.) Anyone need any Euro coins? I have LOADS of those.

3. These Dancing Trees – Linden trees have an amazing history. They’ve been revered by the Egyptians, the Greeks and even the Catholic Church. They’ve provided ingredients for medicinal treatments to the Gauls. And during the French Revolution more than 60,000 Linden trees were planted and the trees were consecrated as “the tree of liberty.”

The Germans came up with a lovely way to use the Linden trees. There you will find Tanzlinden, or dance lindens, throughout the country. A platform is constructed within the trees, and the Lindens are shaped into the form of a structure/building, often with windows. This creates a meeting place where celebrations, which generally includes dancing, are held. Such a lovely tradition and fantastic way to keep connected to nature.

[Found on Present & Correct]

4. This Laundry Tip – Several months ago I decided to switch to more natural cleaning products including laundry detergent and fabric softener. Finding better options for laundry detergent was easier than for fabric softener. The main reason for this is because my laundry machine doesn’t do well with thicker formulas (which aren’t really good for any washers) and most fabric softeners highlight how thick and oozy they are.

But in doing research about natural softeners I came across a lot of articles recommending the use of vinegar as a fabric softener.

Now I’ve used vinegar in my laundry before – like when I’ve accidentally forgot to put my clothes in the dryer and left them in the washer too long and they got that mildew-y smell – vinegar will fix that right up. But I never noticed that it made my clothes softer. But I thought, what the heck, I’ll give it a try.

Damn if it didn’t work! I think the reason I didn’t notice it working previously was because I wasn’t using enough (I wasn’t adding it via the little fabric softener slot.)

In addition to it being a great fabric softener (and household cleaner in general), and being very inexpensive (I buy two gigantic jugs at a time at CostCo), there are other benefits to using vinegar in your laundry:

1. Gets rid of limescale (as I mentioned, I add it via the fabric softener dispenser but you can also clean your entire machine by putting it in your detergent dispenser and running an empty load.)

2. DIY Stain Remover

3. Keeps denim from fading

4. Gets rid of lint and reduces static

5. Erase hem lines

From “7 reasons why you should use vinegar when doing your laundry” by Cynthia Lawrence on Tom’s guide

5. This Role Model – Once again, Giannis Antetokounmpo shows his fans, both young and old, how to behave.

After the Bucks lost the seventh game of the playoffs series (to the Celtics), Antetokounmpo was interviewed and not surprisingly was asked how he felt about the loss. Here’s his response.

At the end of the day, we were playing sports and there’s a winner, there’s a loser.” But at the end of the day, this is a learning curve. Nobody promised you’re going to be in the second round [of the playoffs]. There’s people that have never been in the second round; there’s people that have never been in the NBA finals. So, in my first seven seasons, I’m not viewing it as, ‘I lost.’

It was a learning experience, so hopefully, this moment, instead of thinking that we lost something, we can gain and learn in order for us to put ourselves in a position to win another championship.

Giannis Antetokounmpo

We need more of this.

[Found on Inc.com]

6. This Year’s Winner of the Eurovision Song Contest 2022 – UKRAINE winning had much more significance than just having the best song. Some are saying they got the sympathy vote, but I think that a much more accurate way to describe what happened is that Europe showed their support for Ukraine.

In a time of war this may seem like a trivial thing, but for a country that needs to feel a national identity; where even the smallest amount of good cheer is amplified because of their dire situation; this nugget of happiness will most likely give many a necessary boost.

7. This Breakfast – Amalfi Coast. Everything about it.

[Found on Everything. Just. Pure. Lovely. blog]

Word of the Week


Quote of the Week


Song of the Week

Seven Things I Love (2-28-2022)

  1. 1. This Candle CompanyHarlem Candle Company creates luxury candles, diffusers, and room sprays using famous people and places in black history as inspiration. I haven’t received my order yet but I wanted to include this while it was still Black History Month.

I ordered a “Savoy” candle which has the following description:

The Savoy Ballroom was the soul of Harlem, and kept Lenox Avenue jumping for decades. It was a block long, dripping with glittering crystal chandeliers and an elegant marble staircase, and is known for having birthed the Lindy Hop.   The glamour and excitement of nights on that iconic dance floor are beautifully reflected with a luscious overture of blackcurrant, tart mandarin, crisp green apple and juicy pear evolving into a flirtatious floral heart of Lily of the Valley and jasmine petals. Sensual sandalwood and sheer musk bring warmth to perfectly balance this intoxicating blend.

Is that not heavenly? I’m hoping I’ll get the candle, light it, get into my comfy chair, close my eyes, and be transported back to the Savoy Ballroom of the ’20s. I hope I haven’t set my expectations too high for a scented candle (ha ha ha.)

Plus they’re beautiful.

2. This Custom LibraryJim Cardon, built this library as a gift for his brother! I mean, if this doesn’t warrant a ‘Brother of the Year‘ award I don’t know what would. He modeled it after the library in the movie ‘The Illusionist‘ (on of my favorites, the entire film is available for free on YouTube.)

Talk about book porn!

[Found on Core77]

3. This Lagoon in Australia – PINK! It’s my “signature color”. Is this not amazing? It’s called Hutt Lagoon and the color is from “the caroteinoid-producing algae, dunaliella salina – which is a source of beta-carotene; a food-colouring agent and a great source of Vitamin A.”

The photographer is from Russia and her name is Kristina Makeeva. She’s EXTREMELY talented. If click on her name ⬅ it’ll take you to her Instagram and you can see all her photos. They’ll blow you away.

[Found on My Modern Met]

4. These Knitters or “Yarn Bombers” – I love it if someone yarn bombed my mailbox. I know it doesn’t last forever but while it doesn’t last, it’s so wonderful!

5. This Wall – photo was taken at MOD GEN: a Modern General Store, in the Third Ward near downtown Milwaukee, one of my favorite shops. They have a wonderful selection of unique books, games, puzzles, stationary products, kitchen items, and well, things you won’t find anywhere else. Most importantly they have a fabulous selection of plants and succulents at the back of the store. If you haven’t been I’d suggest you check it out!

6. This Interview with Judi Dench, Graham Norton, Elton John, and John Bishop – I’m fairly certain I don’t need to explain who any of these people are except maybe the last. John Bishop is one of THE most popular comedians in Britain but if you are a Doctor Who fan you will recognize him from the current series as Dan Lewis.

Anyway, got this video from a friend (thanks Stasie!) and it is so wonderful, mostly because this is ME to a tee.

It actually reminds me of, I think it was my 15th high school reunion? I got there and ran into a friend of mine. I would have bet everything I had that she went to one of the other two high schools in Dubuque (where I grew up). I said to her, “Oh my god, what are you doing here!” I mean, I was glad to see her, just surprised. And she replied (obviously a little perplexed and miffed), “what do you mean, what am I doing here.?” She actually got pretty pissed at me because she thought I was joking around but the truth is, I couldn’t remember. I can’t remember much of anything from the past 55+ years except for little snippets here and there. And a lot of what I can remember is due to photos and mementoes I have.

Recently I found a treasure trove of documents – all sorts of certificates and papers from my youth. Going through them was truly a walk down memory lane but there were a few things that I absolutely did NOT remember doing.

For example, in 1978 and 1979 I was in the Annual Metropolitan Speech Contest In 1978 my category was “Choral Reading.” I do remember that. In 1979 my categories were “Prose” and “Pantomime.” I don’t remember ever doing pantomime, not once in my entire life. But here’s evidence in print.

7. These Ukranians – Honestly, I can’t imagine Americans fighting like this. Well, actually, the way I see it going in America if there was ever an attack like this – all the super wealthy would leave to wherever they needed to go to be safe and comfortable, the lower upper-class and upper-middle class would most likely die (except possibly for those who are POC and LGBTQ), and the lower middle class and lower class would be like the Ukrainians – we ain’t puttin’ up with no shit.

What do you think?

Anyway, these Ukrainians are KICKASS.

Okay, first this guy, who picked up a god-damned landmine and moved it off a road all the while continuing to hold his cigarette in his mouth – DAYUM!

Then there is this UNARMED woman, who told a Russian soldier to fill his pockets with the sunflower seeds she offered him so that when he died his body would grow flowers (at least then he’d be doing something good for the world).

Next is this Ukrainian man, who may be a little nuts but who single-handedly attempted to stop a convoy of Russian tanks.

And last but not least, the 13 extremely brave Ukrainians whose job it was to secure Snake Island (also called Zmiinyi Island) – when approached by a Russian battleship told them to “go fuck yourself” IN RUSSIAN before being blown up. They were initially all reported dead because there was no radio contact.

The good news is that the Ukrainians discovered they didn’t die. Hallelujah! The bad news is that after being able to repel two attacks by the Russians they eventually had to surrender due to a lack of ammunition. The Ukrainian soldiers are now being held Sevastopol, Crimea, which was documented on Russian State television.

Also, SNL did a cold opening with the Ukrainian Chorus of New York singing “A Prayer for Ukraine” and I get overwhelmed with emotion every time I watch it.


[EXTRA] ICYMI, John Mahoney was the guest host on SNL on Saturday. He joined the Five Timer’s Club and there’s a new epic musical sketch to go along with Diner Lobster (2018), Bodega Bathroom (2019), Airport Sushi (2020), and New York Musical (2020).

Word of the Week


Quote of the Week

Seven Things That I Love (1-17-22)

1. These KN95 Masks – I’m sure you’ve heard all the new recommendations saying cloth masks aren’t very good anymore and that we should all be wearing N95 or KN95 masks now. Still, I’ve hesitated to purchase new masks for a couple of reasons.

After all, I already own about two dozen beautiful cloth masks. (I particularly love the embroidered ones I found). You can’t really get N95 or KN95 masks that look nice. Another reason – there are too many masks to choose from and the ones that I know are good (not counterfeit) have been sold out – argh! A third reason (and the one that is the most important) all these disposable masks are ending up in landfills and that’s making me catatonic. I’m trying very hard not to make my footprint any larger than it already is.

That’s why, when I read about how VIDA masks includes a prepaid shipping label so that you can return your used masks so they can properly recycle them, I promptly placed an order.

Full disclosure, they haven’t arrived yet, but since ordering them I’ve seen the VIDA masks show up on many different recommended masks lists so I’m thinking they must be pretty good.

2. This Piece of Art by Argentinian-American Artist Cecilia Lueza – a friend of mine reposted this along with the poem below.

“Once upon a time, when women were birds, there was the simple
understanding that to sing at dawn and to sing at dusk was to heal the
the world through joy. The birds still remember what we have forgotten. that the world is meant to be celebrated.

From ‘When Women Were Birds: Fifty-four Variations on Voice
by Terry Tempest Williams

[Thanks Edell (I think it was Edell!)]

3. This Online Game – Last week I started seeing loads of people posting images of these grey, gold, and green blocks:

Initially, I thought the pictures were of some sort of flag or social awareness campaign (obviously I didn’t look at them very carefully.) But then I noticed on one friends post the hashtag WORDLE. After a quick Google search I found out it is an online word game! LOVE me a good word game. Sooooo now I’m completely addicted. The great thing about this online game though is there is only one posted per day so you won’t end up wasting hours playing it.

My best score to date has been the game above on the right – got it in three tries!

If you want to know more about Wordle you can read this article.

From The New Yorker

[Thanks Ann]

4. This GENIUS List of “100 Ways to Slightly Improve Your Life Without Really Trying – Modified from a list originally published in January of 2000 (that’s 22 years ago, can you believe it?!?) this contains simple suggstions such as “Mute or leave a WhatsApp group chat” (I’ve been turning off notifications for group texts, kind of the same thing) or “Don’t have Twitter on your phone.”

This is from a British newspaper so you’ll need to Americanize a few of the items. For example, #51 says to write politely to your MP, in America you will want to write politely to your legislator. Another, #63 says “Volunteer” and then lists a UK URL which provides many opportunities for civic engagement. There isn’t a comparable site in the US but I found this article about civic engagement from 2020 that is excellent.

[Found on The Guardian]

5. This Graphic Illustrator – Cassandra Calin draws cartoons that show the trials and tribulations that women face in their day-to-day life and she’s a hoot!

6. This Video on the Four Levels of Omelets – Fantastic! It turns out this “4 Levels” thing is a series. I plan on watching the lobster roll one once I have omelets mastered. I learned SO MUCH from watching this one video. After the amateur cook, the amateur chef, and the professional chef make their omelets, a person from Epicurious explains what was was done right and what was done wrong and tells you how to make a fourth level (perfect) omelet.

7. These Islands – the Faroe Islands are an autonomous territory of Denmark located about 200 miles northwest of Scotland.

You can see more photos HERE.

[Found on The Modern Met]

Word of the Week


Quote of the Week

HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO BETTY WHITE!
She would be 100 today.

Seven Things I Love (11-8-2021)

1. This Photo of Frida Kahlo – I was uber excited when I saw this picture. I did a little research to see if I could find out how Kahlo came to be sitting with Nayantara Sahgal and Rita Dar, the daughters of Vijaya Lakshmi Pandit (who was the sister of Jawaharlal Nehru and the aunt of Indira Gandhi). I found this article and it doesn’t give a lot more information. It’s most likely that the two women were visiting Mexico in a diplomatic capacity. The article is very interesting though, talking about how saris are essential a garment of protest and resistence. Fascinating!

 
 
 
 
 
View this post on Instagram
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by Brown History (@brownhistory)

[Found by my friend Ami on IG]

 

2.  This 80s Remix of Adele’s ‘Easy on Me’ – Wonderful, makes my heart swoon.

 

3. This Graphic of the Languages of the World – I love info stuff.  Puts things in perspective, doesn’t it? Tell me, why do we think that English should be the universal language? 

 

4. These Earrings from KIKAY – I KNOW I’ll be wearing them ALL the time. They’re super light and I mean, look at them with my hair! (The photo on the right is me.)  This shop is dangerous though. I also bought a pair of pink soot sprites (if you are a fan of Studio Ghibli you will remember they appeared in the films My Neighbor Totoro and Spirited Away.) And look at these guillotines – perfect for Halloween (always thinking ahead.) I know I’ll be ordering more earrings and soon.

[Found via Beryl Shereshewsky – If you aren’t watching her videos you need to do so immediately!]

 

5. This Example of Video Editing – Which is PURE GENIUS! Warning: it’s very easy to go down the rabbit hole on this person’s YouTube channel.

[Found by my pal Angela on Reddit. Thanks Stasie!!!]

 

6. This Table! – Seriously, how wonderful would this be, dining ON a Venetian canal? This isn’t staged, it’s a real table at a real restaurant – Ristorante Ai Barbacani

 
 
 
 
 
View this post on Instagram
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by OMER🥀 (@omergilony)

[Found via MessyNessyChic]

 

7. This “Last” Bookstore – I’ve wanted to go here for a while, but after seeing this story on CBS Mornings now I NEED to go here. A friend of mine went a few months ago (the lucky duck) and sent me a few snapshots but I think you need to see it in person. 

Word of the Week

 

Quote of the Week

 

Seven Things I Love (7-20-2021)

  1. 1. This Reaction to a Young Fan’s Gift – If you’re not a fan of the Milwaukee Bucks’ Giannis Antetokounmpo already (or if you haven’t heard of him), you will be after watching this. THIS is the kind of athlete we want kids to have posters of on their bedroom walls and who they should hope to be like someday and try to emulate.

Here’s more… when asked by a reporter, who taught him about keeping his ego in check, this was Antetokounmpo’s answer:

“When you focus on the past, that’s your ego: ‘I did this. We were able to beat this team 4-0. I did this in the past. I won that in the past.’ When I focus on the future, it’s my pride: ‘Yeah, next game, Game 5, I do this and this and this. I’m going to dominate.’ That’s your pride talking. It doesn’t happen. You’re right here.

“I kind of try to focus on the moment, in the present. That’s humility. That’s being humble. That’s not setting no expectation. That’s going out there, enjoying the game, competing at a high level. I think I’ve had people throughout my life that helped me with that. But that is a skill that I’ve tried to, like, kind of — how do you say it, perfect it, master it. And it’s been working so far. So I’m not going to stop.”

‘NBA Finals: Bucks’ Giannis Antetokounmpo backs up viral ‘humility’ speech with unselfish Game 5 performance’ by Colin Ward-Henninger; July 18, 2021; CBSSports.com

You can watch the exchange below…

By the way, I love Giannis full name – it’s Giannis Sina Ugo Antetokounmpo. How gorgeous is that?!?!

[Found the second tweet via CBSSports.com – you should read the full story, the guy who wrote it is very good]

2. This Auction of Sylvia Plath’s Recipe Cards and Rolling Pin at Sotheby’s – Sadly, when someone’s life ends so tragically, one tends to make assumptions about what their life must have been like or how they lived. Myself, being someone who lives with depression (albeit moderate depression), I think that if a person is so depressed that they are driven to take their own life they must be miserable all the time. I don’t know why I think that. It’s certainly not that way for me. But then, I’m not suicidal.

When I get depressed all I want to do is build a cocoon around myself and not let anyone in. I don’t want to talk to people, I don’t want to go anywhere, I don’t want to do much of anything. I just want to pass the time with things that will distract and take very little mental effort. For me that generally means watching mystery television series from the 80s, 90s or 2000s and doing puzzles.

But I know other people who have depression and their way of dealing with it is much different. Some like to throw themselves into their work. Some like to surround themselves with friends and family. Some like to clean their house or do gardening or repairs they’ve put off. No one deals with depression exactly the same way. Everyone is unique.

My point is, there is a lot more to Sylvia Plath’s life than her being depressed and having committed suicide but unfortunately, that is mostly what people learn about and remember. But it’s really lovely to see these recipe cards with Plath’s handwritten notes and the names/ nicknames included in the recipes titles, which for me always is indicative of affection and sentimentality.

[Found on MessyNessyChic]

3. This Movie (This Beautiful Fantastic), Which is Currently Available to Stream FOR FREE on YouTube – A friend of mine suggested this movie to me a while back and I was lucky enough to catch it while it was streaming (can’t remember where) but shortly after I watched it, it was removed. For months it hasn’t been available anywhere. Now it looks like in addition to being available on YouTube it’s available on Amazon Prime. But I’m never sure when I see something that says it’s available on Prime (for free) whether it’s because I have the Masterpiece & PBS memberships or if it just is generally free.

Either way, whether you try watching it at the link below or watch it via Prime, I highly recommend this movie. It stars Jessica Brown Findlay (Lady Sybil in Downton Abbey, Charlotte Wells in Harlots and Elizabeth McKenna in The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society) as Bella, Andrew Scott (John Parry in His Dark Materials, The Priest in Fleabag, and Moriarty in Sherlock) as Vernon, and Tom Wilkinson (Author in Grand Budapest Hotel, Graham Dashwood in The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel and Gerard in The Full Monty) as Alfie Stephenson.

The premise of the story is that Bella lives alone in a small house which she rents. She’s a unique person, a bit compulsive, who likes to keep to herself. Now I’ll tell you, she works in a library, but that is only one of several reasons why I love this film so much. Many reviews call it a modern fairytale and it truly is.

Bella has a small garden behind her house and part of the rental agreement was that she needed to tend to the garden but she has let it go. She meets her neighbor, who is an ornery SOB, and not long after that happens, a representative for the owner of the house comes by for an inspection an discovers she has not kept her side of the deal. He tells her he’s going to have to evict her but she persuades him to let her have a month to fix the garden up.

I don’t want to tell you anything more but the characters are wonderful, the film is visually beautiful, and it has a magical quality to it.

4. This HISTORIC News from Chile – I mean, it’s actually rather pathetic that the first time a constitution is being written by an equal number of men and women is in 2021 but, well, it’s still commendable. (And there are negative nellies out there.)

5. These New Emojis – Turns out it was “World Emoji Day” on Saturday. I am excited about the disco ball! Though does it seem like these are a little male-heavy to anyone else? It could just be my mental state right now. These are awaiting approving and will become available in September.

6. This Airship of the Future – The airline industry is responsible for about 5% of global warming and these ships will “operate with 75% fewer emissions than a conventional airplane.” It may take longer (but look at how comfortable it will be.) Yes please!

[Found on MyModernMet]

7. This Incredible Pencil Shop in Tehran – There are a lot of bazaars in Tehran. I don’t think that this is in the Grand Bazaar. The video below says it is in the “Traditional Market” which I believe is also called Tajrish Bazaar. One person describes it as being “located in a corner of the bazaar between the two mosques in Tehran.” I can hear the call to prayer.

And here’s a video (pre-pandemic). You don’t need to speak arabic to be impressed or to find the owner, Mr. Rafieh, completely darling. Anyone so passionate and knowledgeable, how can you not love them?

[Found on the Present & Correct blog]

Word of the Week


Quote of the Week

Seven Things I Love (3-29-2021)

  1. 1. This Incredible Photo of Astronaut Bruce McCandless II – Honestly, when I first saw this I thought it must be photoshopped by the person who posted it sent me to this link on the NASA website.

The photo was taken on February 12, 1984. Are you surprised, I was! I actually thought it would have been more recent. According to the website, it was the first ever untethered space walk. “Astronaut Bruce McCandless, ventured further away from the confines and safety of his ship than any previous astronaut had ever been. This space first was made possible by a nitrogen jet propelled backpack, previously known at NASA as the Manned Manuevering Unit or MMU.”

The photo below, which I discovered on social media, is a little more photographic/dramatic than the one found on NASA. I’m not sure if that is because there was more than one camera taking photos and this took them at a higher resolution or if someone has tweaked the “original” version, either way, the photo is amazing.

Here’s a few more photos…

2. This Door that Converts into a Ping Pong Table – Genius, no? There’s only one eensy weensy problem. It costs nearly $15,000!!!

3. This AWESOME Tweet that Includes a Video of the Celebration that Ensued After the Ship Stuck in the Suez Canal Finally Started Moving – EPIC! It brings tears to my eyes.

4. THIS Seven-year-old Boy Who Dressed Up as Amanda Gorman for “Dress as Your Idol Day” – well done!

Poet AMANDA GORMAN at the Inauguration of President Joseph Biden on January 20, 2021

5. This SNL Video from this Past Weekend – People who actually think of themselves as the “greatest generation” are NOT the greatest generation. Just sayin’.

Man, Boomers suck! Please God, don’t let us turn into them! Too late, it’s already happening…

6. This Gorgeous Apartment in Covent Garden that you Can RENT – it’s about $900 per night but if you shared it with two other people it would be completely worth it!

7. This WONDERFUL Art Teacher – EDUCATORS ROCK!

Word of the Day


Quote of the Day


Seven Things I Love (3-15-2021)

  1. 1. This Modification to ‘Fearless Girl’ Showing her Breaking the Glass Ceiling – In celebration of International Women’s Day on March 8th State Street Global Advisors installed a broken glass ceiling around the now iconic statue. ‘Fearless Girl’ was installed on March 7, 2017 and was originally placed at the northern tip of Bowling Green on Broadway, facing down the Wall Street Bull. But the artist of the ‘Charging Bull’ (Arturo Di Modica) complained so the statue was moved to its current location across from the New York Stock Exchange Building.
  2. Not everyone, however, thinks the alteration was done well. What do you think?

2. These EXTREMELY Lucky People Who Got an Impromptu Concert from Yo Yo Ma at this COVID Vaccine Center in Massachusetts – I wouldn’t mind waiting at all under these conditions.

3. This Instagram Post Showing How Oranges are Collected in Valencia, Spain – ingenuity at its finest!

4. This Piece of Art by Bharti Kher called ‘Squaring the Circle’ – created in 2007, Indian artist Bharti Kher used thousands of bindis (Hindi: बिंदी, from Sanskrit बिन्दु bindú, meaning “point, drop, dot or small particle”; is a coloured dot worn on the center of the forehead, originally by Hindus and Jains from the Indian subcontinent) to create this colorful mandala. Mandalas are found in many of the southeastern religions. They are sometimes used as a map representing deities or as an aid during meditation.

To create a mandala out of bindis is extremely significant, not only because it is empowering to women but because it represents a strong community of women.

(Thanks Ann for find this for me!)

5. This FABULOUS Website Called ‘Window Swap‘ That Lets You See Out of People’s Windows Around the World – and it isn’t just that you get to see a photo, it’s an ongoing video so you can hear birds or traffic or whatever sound is found outside the window.

Leeds, UK
South Korea
Brussels, Belgium

6. This Artist Who Creates Animals Out of Flowers & LeavesJosh Dykgraff is astonishingly talented! (Discovered on My Modern Met.)

7. The Group That Should Have Won Record of the Year at the Grammys – mind you, I like Billie Eilish but Black Pumas appeals to a far broader audience on many levels and the message in their music is so important.

FYI – I loved the dress (it’s Oscar de la Renta) that Taylor Swift wore to the Grammys…

FYI – if you have Disney+ and haven’t watched WandaVision, YOU MUST! (I am obsessed!) I will admit, I’m a HUGE Marvel Universe fan but I think even those who aren’t would enjoy how they recreated television sitcoms of the 50s, 60s, 70s, and 80s. Admittedly, it would be very helpful to know a bit about the Avengers movies, especially the last two. Also, Captain Marvel’s storyline is quite relevant. There is a lot more but those two things I felt are the most significant. Wandavision is definitely not your typical MCU production. It has the usual easter eggs, humor and villains but it is also about love, loss, and grief. Since we all have or will experience the loss of a loved one it makes it incredibly relatable.

Word of the Day

This is an AWESOME Inuit word. I haven’t done this much lately but I look forward to doing it again as soon as I finally get vaccinated!

Quote of the Day


Have a fantastic week!

Seven Things I Love (3-8-2021)

Happy International Women’s Day!

BOSTON, MA – MARCH 8: An International Women’s Day march, led by the Bread and Roses group, takes place in downtown Boston on March 8, 1970. The march advocated rights to abortion and equality in work opportunities. (Photo by Don Preston/The Boston Globe via Getty Images)
  1. 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?
ANNIE KAMPFE and CLIFF DONNELLY of Leewood, Kansas

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?!?!

https://youtu.be/J8uXvfKjax4

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.

ALAN TUDYK as the Alien and Dr. Harry Vanderspeigle

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.”

-LeVar Burton on CNN’s Full Circle

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.

London, UK
Paris, France
Havana, Cuba

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?


Quote of the Day


Have a lovely week!

Seven Things I Love (2-15-2021)

  1. 1. These Magnifying Monocles by LUKA – am I advertising that I’m getting old? Yep. Am I doing it in an incredibly cool and stylish way, damn straight. There are many more styles. They are a tad expensive but I can’t tell you the number of times I had to go find my magnifying glass before I got this. Now I always have one with me. And when I actually start leaving the house I bet it’ll come in even more handy.

2. This Short Film, Mobile – no words necessary really, just as cute and funny as can be.

3. This New Series on CNN ‘Stanley Tucci: Searching for Italy’ – this show will make you want to hang out with Stanley Tucci, long for delicious Italian food, and kick your wanderlust into high gear. It’s a three-fer.

4. This Game from the Creator of The Oatmeal – it’s crazy addictive, mostly because the guy who created The Oatmeal, Matthew Inman, is so damned funny so you’ll keep wanting to play just so you can see more of his hilarious cartoons in between the game play. What a riot!

5. This New Version of ‘Biko’ by Peter Gabriel – this one makes me even more emotional than the original.

In honor of Black History Month, we are proud to bring the message of Peter Gabriel’s “Biko” back to the forefront, 40 years after its initial release. Inspired by the death of anti-apartheid activist Steve Biko while in police custody, this song’s relevance still holds true with the unfortunate police brutality that continues to take place in the USA, Nigeria and many places around the world. More than 25 musicians from seven countries join Gabriel for this global rendition to share a message of unity, peace, and hope, including Beninese vocalist and activist Angélique Kidjo, Silkroad’s Yo-Yo Ma, and bass legend Meshell Ndegeocello.

6. This Enchanting Mexican Songstress singing Una Vida (here’s the English translation of the lyrics) – not only is her music beautiful but her videos are wonderfully artistic. Frida Kahlo would definitely have approved.

7. This Lawyer’s Technological Snafu – it makes me giggle every time I see it! (At this point everyone has seen this, unfortunately it’s a drawback of only sending out a blog post once a week.)


Word of the Day


Quote of the Day


Seven Things I Love (12-14-2020)

1. This H&M Christmas Short Film directed by Wes Anderson – I’m a fanatic when it comes to anything Wes Anderson so it’s rather shocking that I missed this advert from 2016. (Though it is also very possible that I have simply forgotten it. Damned menopausal brain. Though on a bright note, if I did forget it, I am getting to enjoy it all over again.) Either way, it’s wonderful!

Another amazing Christmas advert (I LOVE THEM) – be sure to have some tissue nearby.

2. This Animated Video Series, Rollin’ Wild – What if animals were round? (Or more accurately, what if animals were inflated like balloons?) Makes me laugh every single time I watch them. There are more videos at their channel. Sadly they only made a handful of Rollin’ Wild videos. I wish they’d start making them again, they’re delightful!

And here’s a Christmas video…

3. This Video on Accepting Compliments – so this chap is the husband of a friend of mine. Hearing him talk about his wife is especially wonderful for that reason. But because of the personal connection and his storytelling skills (and marvelous accent) the message really resonated with me. May be some of the best advice I’ve ever received. I probably should have learned this 40 years ago! (And why do we teach our children not to accept compliments????)

4. This Series of Holiday Photos with Stormtroopers – to see all of them you’ll need to click on the date (it says 5 years ago) right below where it says Mr. Llama. HILARIOUS!

5. This A-Frame Cabin for Rent on airbnb – One word – COZY. Click on any of the photos to go to the airbnb site to see interior shots. Next year I’m going to be traveling a LOT.

6. This Iconic London Hotel attached to a Train Station – The St. Pancras Renaissance Hotel opened in 2011 and uses spaces that were once occupied by the Midland Grand Hotel (which officially closed in 1935) and the St. Pancras Chambers which were apartments used as railway offices.

I have stayed at the hotel several times, I LOVE it there. And I especially love it there during the holidays (I am DEFINITELY going to spend a week in London next November). Not only is it convenient to have one of the major train stations right outside the door (and the British Library across the street) but there is shopping in the train station too. I mean, in theory I could go here and not leave a the building except to walk across the street to go to the library. IN THEORY (there are too many other places I have to visit when I’m in London, like my friends most importantly, and Fortnum & Mason, which is my mothership, and the V&A Museum, and Broadway Books in Hackney and of course there may be a show playing that I cannot miss, and, and, and … well, the list is endless!

Well before the St. Pancras opened, even after Midland Grand had been closed to being used as offices, the Spice Girls filmed one of their most famous videos at this location.

There’s an interesting story behind the filming of the video.

One last thing, and I haven’t been able to able to verify this, but I was told a story about how, when the Midland Grand Hotel was first built back in the 1870s, the air was so thick with smog that architect Sir George Gilbert Scott decided to paint the vaulted ceiling above the grand staircase with a night sky since London residents weren’t actually able to see through the haze. Whether that is true or not, it does make sense. Here is more information on the grand staircase.

7. This Banksy – ending the year with a SNEEZE…


Word for the Day


Quote for the Day

Have a
WONDERFUL Week!

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