Solo shopping trips are very dangerous for me. I go to the mall for one thing (Lush Cosmetic’s Coal Face soap in this instance) and walk out with an array of items that I realized I just had to have… Or I can be truthful and say they were impulse buys (that I secretly really needed!)
I went to Stoneridge Mall in Pleaston (California for my non-Bay Area reader) to switch things up and walked out with the goodies above (including the not-pictured Lush Coal Face soap). So thought I’d do a little mini-review of my thoughts thus far on the products.
I spent my high school days listening to the radio, waiting for the newest songs to premiere. However, these days everything has become digital and most of my new music comes from the Internet or friend’s recommendations.
While I love being able to access music so easily, I do sometimes feel nostalgic for the excitement of hearing a new song on the radio for the first time. I’ll admit, I’m not really a fan of the music that is played on the radio now days, but I do listen to on my ten minute drive in the morning to the train station and this morning I was treated to a song premiere – Coldplay’s new single, Magic.
I’ve been a Coldplay fan since high school and Magic veers away from the radio-friendly, stadium sound that they’ve perfected. It’s introspective, soothing and beautiful. As soon as I heard just half of the song, I was already on iTunes, purchasing the single. It’s been on repeat ever since.
After immersing myself in such philosophically heavy novels as Night Train to Lisbon and The Name of the Rose, I decided to pick a lighter fare for my next reading. The Perfume Collector by Kathleen Tessaro was one of the recommendations on my Good Reads app. A book set in 1950s Paris and 1920s New York – what’s not to love? The perfume part didn’t hurt (I have a thing for it if you couldn’t tell by the picture).
Grace Munroe receives a letter from Paris, noting that she must travel there immediately to sign papers for a large inheritance that she has been left by Eva D’orsey. However, the problem is, she’s never met the woman. The book unfurls Eva’s story, while Grace’s intersects right along with it. We meet eccentric and sometimes down right crazy characters, like Madame Zed, Mr. Lambert and Andre Valmont along the way. The unsophisticated Grace is thrust into Paris. She tries oysters for the first time, has dinner with a man other than her husband, and samples some the of the most exquisite and rare perfumes in the world.
It isn’t a refined novel by any means, and much of it is highly predictable, but still I found that I enjoyed myself. I wanted to be Grace experiencing these amazing things in a brand new world for the first time. I wished I could walk the streets of Paris and take in the sights and scents. However, most of all it made me want to run to a perfumery and have a custom made perfume created for myself.
I loved learning a bit more about the different concoctions of perfumes and the many accords and notes that go into creating a certain scent. Tessaro has certainly done her research.
If Paris, perfume, romance with a little eccentricity sound interesting, this is a nice easy read to pick up. Be warned, you might also which to escape to a little perfume shop in Paris to have a custom made scent created.
Beautiful and thoughtful book that turns your insides.
I went into Night Train to Lisbon with high expectations. The novel was on a short list of books to read that were similar to Shadow of the Wind, otherwise known as one of my favorite book of all time. No pressure.
First things first – while there are some similarities, these two novels are not really alike. Like Shadow of the Wind, it has some beautiful prose. However, Night Train to Lisbon is much more inside itself. By that I mean that it is highly philosophical and there are blocks of text from the book that main character, Raimund Gregorius is reading by Amedeu Prado, that are intense and wonderfully poetic at times.
More often than not, re-makes are just not up to par with originals. That goes for films, television shows and songs. However, every once in a while, the opposite occurs and that is the case with Frank Ocean’s Strawberry Swing.
The original is by Coldplay, and while it’s still lovely, the Frank Ocean cover is, in my opinion, better. The odd thing is, that it the two tracks are almost identical. Yet, Frank turns it into a dreamy, heartfelt song about childhood memories. It fills you with nostalgia (Nostalgia, ULTRA is the name of the album this appears on) and a certain sense of longing. Frank’s voice is utterly perfect for this song and the end fadeaway with Coldplay is sublime.
I’ve spent many a day listening to this on repeat.
Colors shone with exceptional clarity in the rain. The ground was a deep black, the pine branches a brilliant green, the people wrapped in yellow looking like special spirits that were allowed to wander over the earth on rainy mornings only.
I always find it difficult to write about my favorite things, not for a lack of words, rather, the need to do it justice. For that exact reason, it has taken me longer than it should to write about my favorite book – The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafon.
“…few things leave a deeper mark on a reader than the first book that finds its way into his heart. Those first images, the echo of words we think we have left behind, accompany us throughout our lives and sculpt a palace in our memory to which, sooner or later—no matter how many books we read, how many worlds we discover, or how much we learn or forget—we will return.”
While it isn’t the first book that found it’s way into my heart, its certainly left the deepest mark. It’s the only novel I have read more than twice, and in matter of days the first time I did. Like the quote above says, I find myself returning time and time again. I begin to miss the characters, Daniel Sempre (the protagonist), Fermin Romero de Torres and most of all Julian Carax, who my heart ached for and fell in love with, as if they were old friends.
Another day, another Giorgio Armani rave. Okay, maybe not, but it sure feels that way. Armani is hands down, my favorite makeup line when it comes to foundations. I wrote a glowing review on the Maestro Fusion Makeup foundation and while I love it for everyday, I needed something with a little more coverage for a slew of upcoming family weddings.
Naturally, I chose the other Armani foundation that is raved about by almost everyone that has used it – the famed Luminous Silk Foundation. I picked mine up from Nordstroms for $60.
An immediate smile and an instant calm. That is what Michael Jackson’s Human Nature gives me. There are dozens of iconic Michael Jackson songs to choose from, but my absolute favorite is this smooth number from his Thriller album.
Jackson sings about breaking out and the anticipation of the strangers he will meet. That feeling of being alive and in the moment coupled with his breathy vocals, make for a lovely ballad that I could listen to on repeat and still not tire of.
Get me out into the night time. Four walls won’t hold me tonight. If this town is just an apple, then let me take a bite.