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Can you believe it's August already? Hot August nights and the leaves hanging down and the grass on the ground smelling sweet...thank you Neil Diamond. I always want to play that song this month.
I am digitally, technically, challenged but learned a great new thing yesterday.
Please don't LOL, but I did not know that you could play music wirelessly through the speakers in your house directly from your iPad. And can upload movies directly to your TV screen, and the movies maintain their HD quality.
I still think that iPad is a magic box.
I spent my first full week at OWN merging new staff with Harpo folks. Alignment is the first step in getting anything to work. We all had a great week. Although if you saw my tweet, you noticed I could use some better office furniture.
Monday is too stressful. Wednesday is already hump day. But Tuesday is "you" day: a day when you have the energy to do—or plan—something fresh and unexpected that might just turn your whole week around.
Treat your neighbors to a cool, sweet, liquid treat tomorrow, also known as Watermelon Day. Whip up some backyard watermelon margaritas with Sheryl Crow's secret recipe.
Amaze your kids in college by mentioning (casually) that you're going to start storing the family photos in the cloud. How to get a sneak peek at iCloud.
Play amateur paleontologist. How to see the fossilized skeleton of a thalattosaur, just found in Alaska.
Trick yourself—or somebody you love—into eating 2 of their 5 recommended servings of fruits and veggies. Indulge in a bowl of sweet corn and black raspberry ice cream.
Celebrate your friends and Friendship Day this Sunday. Buy the ladies you love a grown-up version of a summer camp friendship bracelet.
Every week, we'll be letting you know about new releases the editors at O and Oprah.com couldn't stop reading. On sale this Saturday:
by Robert Olen Butler
The quiet heartbreak that anchors the novel: The day Michael and Kelly Hayes are supposed to finalize their divorce, they separately mourn—and long—for their shared past.
Where you'll travel: From the French quarter in New Orleans to a hoop-skirted historical ball on a Mississippi plantation.
What not to expect: The usual patient, slow unfolding of a story about marriage. This little novel is a page-turner—right up to the last page.
The sentence that had us at hotel: "They look at each other steadily for a long while and then somewhere about her eyes she shows the tiniest moon-ascension increment of a threshold smile, but it too holds and persists without pushing on and he does not have to deal with it, does not have to smile as well or be forced not to smile in return, it is a simple thing with no demands on him and his chest and arms and shoulders go quiet, his mind goes quiet, he knows he can be good with this woman and she can be good with him."
Our complete review of A Small Hotel
The Irresistibles: 45 lyrical, luscious reads
20 unputdownable love stories
The big decade birthdays are confusing to all of us. When you're turning 30, 40, 50, 60, or up are you supposed to throw a huge bash and embrace the moment with joy? Or are you supposed to throw a huge bash and pretend you're embracing the moment with joy? Or are you supposed to slink off into the night with a good friend and a bottle of champagne? There are my questions. My last milestone birthday went a little dimly. Slinking off is never as much fun as you want it to be.
Thankfully, one spunky woman at the outer edge of 49 has given me a completely new view on how to celebrate the next 0-birthday. Quite frankly, I'm not sure if it's her or her cause that is more inspiring. But I'm definitely going to to tune in to see if she shaves her head to celebrate!
My mismatched set of flutes--born when a friend organized a small birthday gathering--has grown over the years, and the best part is that it actually gets a fair amount of use. It doesn't sit in a display case, but in one of my kitchen cabinets. I break the glasses out every time we're drinking bubbly (which isn't only on New Year's Eve). And, you can find champagne flutes anywhere, from Ireland to your local dollar store. They are are my version of snow globes, available at any and all tourist traps, though they don't get dusty. They're akin to a snow globe you can use.
Sarabeth Levine, who runs the New York and Florida bakery and restaurant Sarabeth's, would agree that collections can be practical: Levine collects cookie jars (they must have stable lids and be light enough that they're easy to lift). Former American Heritage editor Richard Snow collects plates from New York City restaurants he used to go to with his dad when he was a child, prowling eBay for items like a butter dish from the Horn & Hardart automat. "Most antiques, you have to take care of," Snow wrote recently in the Wall Street Journal. "[But] my family eats off [the plates] every night."
Here's the thing. If it were just about practicality, we'd buy the champagne flutes/cookie jar/dinner plates we needed and get on with life. But when there's more to it: the attachment I feel when I take a sip from the very glass that held prosecco as I listened to my sister's speech on my wedding day. That's a feeling a display case of fancy antiques just can't match.
Debbie Reynolds' Hollywood Treasures
Break Free from the Collectibles Cluttering Your Home
How to Start Collecting Art
Every Monday, we're rounding up things--small and big--that made us stop and think. Today, we were moved and inspired by an inaugural poet, Afghanistan's Romeo and Juliet, and more...
Shelley Keeling, a competitive runner who also coaches her 96-year old mother, Ida Keeling, in road races:
"It never occurred to me that my mom couldn't run."
Elizabeth Alexander, professor of African American studies at Yale, on what poetry can bring to a community:
"Are we not of interest to each other? To me, it's not about 'Oh i like her shoes...' It's much deeper than that. Are human beings who are in community, do we call to each other, do we heed each other, do we want to know each other?"
Halima Mohammedi and Rafi Mohammed, two Afghan teenagers whose attempt to go on a single date caused villagers to riot and the local authorities to jail them for their own protection:
Ms. Mohammedi: "We are all human. God created us from one dirt. Why can we not marry each other, or love each other?"
Mr. Mohammed: "I feel so bad. I just pray that God gives this girl back to me. I'm ready to lose my life. I just want her safe release."
Miranda July, writer, director and star of the new film, The Future:
She admires directors like [Noah] Baumbach and Wes Anderson, but she said: "All those men are also personal. I don't mind that, but I do mind that it's not really questioned, whereas I or another woman is looked at as so self-obsessed. Men are just not being judged in the same way. They're never going to be annoying in the same way."
Nathan Heller writing in Slate about the enduring appeal of book clubs:"They are our bid to stay on the same page across the blur of modern life."
A debate recently broke out in O's fashion department--a few staffers strongly argued in favor of keeping breasts supported 24/7 to prevent sagging, while the rest of us said strapping our chests down at night just isn't worth the trouble (or discomfort). Which is when our creative director Adam Glassman stepped in, declared it a toss up and asked me to get to the bottom of this bra (or no bra) battle.
I called in the experts, bra whisperer and founder of Intimacy boutiques, Susan Nethero, and Phil Haeck, MD, and president of The American Society of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgeons, to find out what's myth and what's fact when it comes to keeping the (ahem) girls perky.