The magic of New York City at the holidays!
The beautiful decorations, the excitement of the crowds, and the crisp, cold air. There’s nothing like bundling up and checking out the windows while people watching and smelling the scents of roasting chestnuts, pretzels and candied nuts from nearby street vendors.
The tv show The West Wing. I love Aaron Sorkin’s creation and find the writing amazing! Jed Bartlett’s intelligence is inspiring as is the entire vibe of his administration!
Jenna Lyon’s style for fashion.
I love how she pairs the unexpected together, to create a “strange magic”, her words, in her interview with CBS This Morning in November 2014.
It’s the sequin skirt, that’s paired with a men’s button down, and sneakers, making it completely day appropriate. In the same CBS interview, she gave a description of how a new look often comes together for her.
Her description? Picture yourself coming home from work, or a night out, and throwing off what you’re wearing. As it lands, it comes to rest next to something you’ve never thought to pair it with, but the combination creates a new and unique look. One you’ve never considered, the product of which is magical. It just works.
This sense of the unexpected, and that anything goes, has allowed my Math and Science brain to explore a more creative side of myself, that feels like a combination of Carrie Bradshaw’s courage for fashion, mixed with Jenna Lyon’s fashion sense, and ultimately, allows me to dress for me. What I realize is that I love fashion! I love the pairing of items that on their own, seem ordinary or typical, but together, create that extraordinary magic.
The book A Discovery of Witches by Deborah Harkness.
The book, a work of fiction, begins at the start of a fresh semester with the heroine, a PhD Professor from Yale, spending a semester at Oxford. As a student, I always loved that feeling of possibilities that a new school year held! I loved to consider what great events loomed in store for the coming months!
The first part of this book is set at Oxford University, and the characters spend a good deal of time in the Bodleian Library, with its reading rooms and stacks of books. I’ve always loved the pursuit of knowledge and the thrill of learning something new to better myself. Nowhere is that feeling more present, for me, than in a college library, and the richness and history of Oxford University’s library just heightens it all the more!
A quiet evening with my husband and son eating dinner and watching a movie. My recent favorites have been The Greatest Showman – I can’t stop listening to the inspiring soundtrack, and Molly’s Game. This is another work of Director Aaron Sorkin’s, and again, the writing is smart and witty. I love Molly Bloom’s guts, drive and most of all, intelligence! I love strong, smart, powerful women, and she certainly fits that description!
Reading, anything, but especially fiction.
I love books that take you on a journey and inspire you to live a better life. From the character Isabelle in The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah to anything by Dr. Brene Brown. Of course, I also love the Harry Potter series, and am still telling everyone to read The Book Thief by Markus Zusak and A Gentleman in Moscow by Amor Towles! All are best devoured with a great cup of hot tea while curled up under a soft and cozy blanket.
Music that lights me up and gets me to feel something. For me, George Michael’s video for Freedom is still one of my favorites. My family and I love to dance, and often my husband, son and I will have an impromptu dance party, usually to Michael Jackson.
The vibe and energy of city life from New York to D.C., Paris or London, there’s an energy that’s palpable. Everyone is striving to be their best. I love it and find it so motivating!
The Ellen DeGeneres Show. How could you not love it? Ellen DeGeneres herself has such a kind and giving spirit. She encourages people to be comfortable in their own skin, and she’s funny. When I have the chance to catch the show, not only am I guaranteed for it to bring a little extra joy to my day, but it always takes me back to those carefree days in college, hanging out with girlfriends, watching Oprah after class.
To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee. I love reading certain books at specific times of the year for the feelings they evoke. This one is June’s read because it reminds me of simpler times when I couldn’t wait for the last day of school and the lazy days of summer. This is definitely a book that helps me escape from the fast pace of life!
I love anything to do with snow. When I lived in NYC, I loved staying in and watching the snow fall outside while devouring a great book or watching a movie. I love ski resorts having grown up snow skiing out west for family vacations. There’s nothing like standing at the top of the mountain and smelling the fresh, crisp air combined with the smoke from the fire burning in the nearby lodge, all while taking in the amazing view! I had a whole new appreciation for this when I lived in NYC where there wasn’t much nature.
Fashion magazines, especially Vogue and Harper’s Bazaar. I realize I’ve always loved fashion. I remember each July as a teenager anxiously awaiting August and the delivery of my thick, September issues of Seventeen and Teen magazines. These were the back-to-school issues, and I used to pore over the pages examining the fall fashions. Reading fashion magazines is, again, a way for my Math and Science brain to explore and cultivate a creative side.
Allowing my inner 7 year old to dress me.
She was the girl that was fearless and marched to the beat of her own drum. Every time she dresses me, even if the combination feels a little crazy, it always looks amazing and unique to me!
Doing, wearing and looking like me. Honoring what I love and expressing that individuality. This, for many of us, myself included, is a journey, the journey of a life to embrace one’s individuality and show it to the world without being worried about how it’s accepted.