Saturday, April 6, 2013

Random Saturday Musings

So much to talk about today, so I will get right at it!

1) The Death of Roger Ebert

Oh Roger, how I did love your thumb!  Gene Siskel and Roger Ebert brought thoughtful movie reviews to the masses, educating people, myself included, along the way.   I didn't always agree with their perspectives, but I always learned something.  I was sad earlier this week when Ebert released the note that his cancer was back and that he was taking a break.  How long that break was became sadly clear the next day when he died.  While the balcony may now be closed here on earth, I suspect it opened to some fanfare elsewhere, where Siskel and Ebert, back in their tweed jackets, are currently extolling the virtues of "My Dinner with Andre" to a skeptical God.

GF told me the other day that in honour of his passing, she was going to work on her own list of the top ten movies she would need to take with her to a desert island.  I think that is a good idea and include mine here!  No judgement now, folks, and please feel free to share your list here too!  Today it will be only "thumbs up".  In no particular order:

  1. Casablanca
  2. The Wizard of Oz
  3. Sleepless in Seattle
  4. The Lord of the Rings trilogy (a cheat, I know!)
  5. To Kill a Mockingbird
  6. Rear Window
  7. It's a Wonderful Life
  8. Schindlers List
  9. The Quiet Man
  10. Meet Me in St. Louis
Of course, that is today's list.  I completely reserve the right to revise this list tomorrow!
2) The Cherry Orchard

We are off to see a high school production of the above, with my son in one of the smaller parts.  It is his first time performing on stage and he quite likes it.  I admit it; I have never read this play or seen it performed live.  It appears that any actor of consequence lists this, along with MacBeth or Hamlet, as part of a well-rounded Curriculum Vitae!  We will see if the same holds true for my lad! 

Main story image
nope - not in this picture, but his buddies are

Another happy event for him is that he applied (with some prodding) to one of our local universities to begin their liberal arts program.  Given his current lack of direction and his need to learn both critical thought and the art of writing well, I am certainly encouraging this.  He seems more excited about the possibility since his acceptance letter arrived and it might inspire him enough to pass in those journalism assignments which hitherto, he has considered too "lame" and therefore beneath his attention...I did not feel that when my daughter graduated that I had much to do with that accomplishment.  With the boy on the other hand, I feel we are all going kicking and screaming to that diploma...

3) Kate Spade New Arrivals

While there isn't much that I feel is appropriate for me and my style these days at Kate Spade, I do always love the purses and this time, I am intrigued by a dress that looks like a basket, the natural tromp l’oeil mariella dress,  which I cannot decide if I think is so clever it is cute or so clever that it is bizarre.  The advent of the new technologies that allow designers to put ANYTHING on fabric and have it look quite real is certainly creating a plethora of interesting and sometimes questionable fabrics.  As I said, I am on the fence on this one and would love your thoughts!

natural tromp l’oeil mariella dress

I can't seem to get a good shot of the details so you just have to go over and take a look yourself!

How about the apple basket wristlet?  More whimsy than one can shake a stick at!

pack a picnic apple wristlet

4) Anna Karenina

I know, I am WAY late to this show.  My daughter and I watched it last night.  Actually, she left after an hour.  "Clever," she said "but with nothing to love about the characters."  She was the smart one and by the time old Kiera threw herself in front of the train, well, I was just glad I wasn't there as I might have pushed her just to have it all over.

I look like that at Barry all the time....
Don't get me wrong.  It was clever setting it as they did in a theatre.  The costumes were sumptuous.  They somehow managed to make Jude Law homely.  But the conceit of the staging grew wearying for me quickly, Kiera Knightly (she of the pouting lips and smoldering eyes that are are used by her to great effect in all of her movies) did not make me care about her and if you don't care about Anna, well where is the tragedy?  It just felt like a long march to the end.  Sorry if some of you really loved this movie - perhaps it was the wrong night after a long week, but more likely it was simply not my cup of tea!

5) The New Chair Arrived

As some of you may recall, we began redoing our family room once the laundry was completed.  This was logical, as one project did begat the other.  The laundry room's structural changes resulted in drywall in the family room and a decision point about finally changing out the windows and making the room more of a family room than its current incarnation as simply a TV room.  Well thank God the Chair arrived (it had been 9 weeks since we placed the order and my special workman seemed reluctant to do much in the interim) as Barry is back at it in full fury.  While the whole thing will likely not be completed for a couple of months, as some things need to ordered, such as windows, etc, now that the weather is getting warm enough to change the windows, it is heartening indeed! 

The chair is by Lazyboy and is a lovely thick linen material in a paisley print which has the cobblestone colour of our couch and the blue that will be a focal point when the room is completed.  It is comfortable and a good size without being too large, which has often been an issue for us before, no doubt because Barry is 6'3".  It was lovely fun to pick out our own material and have it done properly to our taste at the factory, including the proper stain-repelling done before the material is even placed on the furniture.  There was none of that dreaful off-gassing that you get when the local store does it for you.  So we are pleased and I will take more pictures as the work progresses (I hope!)

So that is my Saturday - what about yours?  Have a great day and stay safe out there!


  1. I was sad to hear about Roger Ebert too. I am not a movie goer, but always enjoy reviews. I would place Pride and Prejudice in my top 10, and My Cousin Vinny( I love humor). From this distance the Kate Spade dress has a lovely shape and color, but I would have to see it close up. The wristlet is clever, but too twee, IMO. I really like the strong print you have chosen for your chair. Carnations are often maligned in real life, but they are actually one of my favorite flowers. I love their frilled heads, their longevity and their spicy scent. A print like that can really tie a room together. Enjoy it! Your tulips are so pretty.

    1. Hi! I really love Pride and Predjudice too (but which version - so many to choose from!) and My Cousin Vinny made me laugh out loud, too! I could never do that wristlet - it seemed very twee to me, too! On other hand, 18 year old son's girlfriend looks sweet when she uses things like that! I think Kate Spade is going WAY young for me...

      I love carnations, too. Pretty much every flower has me at hello, but a carnation can make a bouquet look lovely!!!

  2. Love your chair! I am doing one over and can't get past picking out the fabric. Must apply oneself today.

    Read " Machiavelli for Parents" in today's Wall St Journal.Esp last paragraph.

    I can hear both movie critics in my head. Such a difficult time Ebert had! I know I saw and enjoyed films I might otherwise not have seen because of that thumb.

    Freezing again here-- sorry--and I have to frockup for a wingding tonight 70 miles away.

    1. Lane, I am adopting frock-up from now on. Fortunately today I only have to layer up to go watch a game. At least looks like no more snow to freezing rain mix (Fingers crossed and mittens pocketed - gah.)

    2. Frock up! It's kind of like what a superwoman would say! I brought about 20 swatches and laid them all over my couch for a week. Drove husband mad, but he likes the chair and the material! I am definitely going to check out that WSJ article! Frock on!

  3. MIX & MATCH Best of luck to DS at his premiere (at least for the parentals.) That is BIG news on uni, phew. Chair looks very comfy and good scale. If haven't seen, for a better rendition of Anna K. (filmed in St. Petersburg) look for the Sean Bean, Sophie Marceau version on DVD/ Amazon sale. Chemistry is not ideal, but she is more empathetic and backdrop is gorg. Much harder to confirm just 10 films than I first thought. I might end up with classic (pre 1975 ish) and modern lists or general and holiday. Catching a bit of Mildred Pierce late last night made me think of this. Then when discussing with DH, he reminded me I didn't have a single Redford/ Newman film - big miss from my "always" rota. I do think Siskel & Ebert will be happily reunited on that great balcony in the sky - with hot popcorn, comfy seats and only films they want to watch.

    1. I will definitely look up that version! LOVE so many films - why I said this was today's list! I love Newman and Redford as well. I still believe that Paul Newman might just be the best looking man who ever lived....sigh....

  4. My list must include Titanic, Goodfellas, The Godfather, Pulp fiction, Breaking the waves, You got mail and The Piano teacher (Haneke). These are not necesserly the best movies in the history of cinema but movies that I could watch again and again, which is helpful on a desert island!

    1. Oh and I totally agree on Anna Karenina

    2. Oh I love all those movies, too! That's the problem, isn;t it? Maybe they could just parachute in new films every week!

  5. Anna Karenina was a real flopper! I'm not going to see it now, MrBP would be endless with his comments I'm sure, not worth it.
    That dress! I am oddly attracted to it myself (because I love baskets) but if I start wearing frocks with a fake basket weave pattern printed all over it please phone the loony bin. Yet the silhouette is really lovely isn't it.
    Congrats to DS on the play and University! For encouragement I should tell you that our son was mostly interested in living at U of T when he went to Uni, bright lights big city etc but now after two years he has become a real student.
    Your chair is beautiful!

    1. Dani - I was SO relieved Barry wasn't there! I am sure he would have been revving up the train engine about 10 minutes in! I think this kind of print thing would be fun on a scarf, but it is oddly repulsive to me. They keep getting more and more whimsical and that is saying a lot coming from me, who thought she was more whimsical than she turns out to be!

      Could news on your son! My son wants to study philosophy. He is going to have an interesting life, doing who knows what. But it will be interesting, I can say that for sure!

  6. I'm happy to know we could be shipwrecked on a desert island together and I'd be happy with your movies! Congratulations to your son. Dress is too young, I think. And your chair is truly beautiful and I'm sure comfortable. Looking forward to seeing the finished room. It is sad about Roger Ebert - I think everyone feels that way. They both (Siskel and Ebert) died way too young, and had long, horrible illnesses - really tragic. It's really touched a nerve in me.

    1. Walked out of Anna Karenina in 7 mins. As soon as the "stage" appeared the groan from my husband was the end.

    2. Made me laugh out loud on the 7 minute walk out! My issue with Kate Spade is this: what young girl - which is getting to be more and more of their demographic - going to be able to afford such frocks as these? Mind boggling to me!

      Kathy we will be happy together. You can teach me to paint. I will just try and be witty and make sure we have enough food!

    3. Youngish girls who have mothers who'll buy them dresses. A larger demographic than one might think. You can't imagine the number of youngish women I see in LA carrying $3,000 handbags and wearing Cartier watches.

  7. Your chair is amazing. Lately, every time I see a great chair it turns out to be from Lazyboy. Who knew?

    I enjoyed reading about your JCrew picks in an earlier post. Want to thank you for pointing out the Beechwood Twill Minnie pants. They arrived today and will definitely be one the basis of many an outfit for me also this spring.

    Have you checked out the Beach Ball bracelet (item 01681). Comfortable to wear and the colors are cheerful. Best of all, the size is not obtrusive yet it makes a statement. Have already paired it with a white shirt and the Beechwood Minnie pants for a simple daytime at home outfit.

    Don't now if your Winners stores carry the same stock as TJMaxx, but there seems to be a number of jewelry pieces lately at TJMaxx which are dead ringers for some of the JCrew pieces. Currently, you can get a lookalike for the Enamel braid bracelet (item 01932)in mint, light blue or tan for US$29.99.

    Your blog is one of my daily must reads. Good luck in your future ventures!

    1. I just got my beechwoods as well yesterday and I love them! Got to take a picture as I got the blouse and sweater in the deep cove (or dark cove? honestly, I can never keep them straight!)and every item in this order was a keeper! There was music playing and I could almost hear Mickey whisper "finally". I have to check the jewellry at winners - I was in there today and snagged the best calvin klein double breasted navy blazer one size too big which will be perfect for a spring coat! Was quite happy about that!

      Thank you so much for the kind words about the blog - that is really lovely of you to say!

    2. Yes! I love a blazer as a spring or fall coat. I also buy a size up for that purpose. Sounds like you got a great score at Winners.

    3. Thanks xoxo - and thanks for the good advice - buckets of tulips! I have two bunches on the go right now and it is making spring arrive!

  8. Your chair is excellent! Lazboys are great, in spite of the name.

    I love the silhouette of the KS dress, I wonder how it would be in person though!

    I have tulips just like that now on my kitchen table - they sure brighten things up. Especially when it is still freezing out! Have a nice weekend WMM!

    1. YOu too - I am with you tulips and daffodils this time of you make you think that they might actually arrive in your yard, too!

  9. I have both kids decided on colleges and will be an empty nester in August. Sigh. Joy. Sigh again. I am presently shopping for a dress to wear to Em's graduation. I loooove movies. We just watched the remake of Red Dawn. Was one of hubs favorite movies as a teenager. He was NOT happy with the remake. Imagine that. The movies I have and will watch over and over are...lord of the Rings trilogy, Pretty Woman, Forrest Gump, Dodge Ball, Bourne movies (with Damon), Princess Bride. The weather is gorgeous. Hubs is mowing, I am about to go running with Em, and then she'll go to work, we'll go to Fresh Market for our dinner and I am hoping to finally watch War Horse...I hear it is good.

    1. BB - I forgot about pretty woman - always stop and watch that! Actually - I love all of the movies you have listed above. YOu tell your husband that my 18 year old son is crazy about red dawn (the original!) I loved me some Patrick Swayze back in the day...

  10. My favorite movies include House of Spirits,Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil,Titanic,Double Jeopardy,Blind Side,The Fugitive.

    Just got my boyfriend fatique in the smaller size and am still deciding if i should keep it.

    We are going to a indian restaurant tonight:)

    1. oh yay to Indian Food - love it, love it, love it! I have never seen House of Spirits - will have to look that up! Oh and the Fugitive - so great!! Especially Tommy Lee Jones, whom I adore!!!! Such great picks!

  11. Congrats to DS!

    If I got that dress, I think everyone would call me the Wicker Woman.

  12. So happy to hear about getting in to a local university. This might help with the transition being around Mom and Dad.
    I've noticed Kate Spade is getting shorter in the length of dresses.Don't care for the print of the dress but I love the chair. Very nice addition.

    1. Hi Marsha,

      External and internal acceptance are two different things in 18 year boys! :-)

      I find kate spade is getting odder and odder and catering to a much different demographic than me!

  13. That chair is lovely!
    I must say I've never heard of Roger Ebert....
    Favourite films are so hard to pick, but off the top if my head for today, at least, mine are as follows:

    Withnail and I
    The Lives of Others
    A Royal Affair
    36.2 degree Le Matin
    Pulp Fiction
    Monty Python and the Holy Grail
    Tonari no Totoro (family favourite)
    The Shining
    The Usual Suspects
    Trust. (Love Hal Hartley)

    Oops. That's 11 films. I must have seen all of them bar A Royal Affair at least 4 times each if not more.

    1. And that's great news about your son - Uni really is pretty important, I reckon.
      Apparently even though I've spent decades in tertiary education I still can't count. Oh well....

    2. Hi Ruth,

      I am intrigued by your list - someingave never heard of, which is exciting!

      Two of your movies have some of my favourite lines ever:

      Bring out your dead!
      Wendy I'm home! Honey I'm home...

      Great stuff!


Kindness is a virtue...