Month: April 2012

books, lifestyle

are you reading that book?

It’s Friday!  After a nice week of birthday celebration, it’s back to business.

Are you reading Fifty Shades of Grey? I am planning on starting it this weekend. In comparison, I’m late to the party, I know. But, everywhere I go, I hear women talking about this book. I feel like I HAVE to read it, now. It reminds me of the fifth grade when you had to keep up with Judy Blume books, just so you knew all of the important stuff, like, “the bases”.

Let me know your thoughts, opinions. I’d love to hear what some of my like minded women (& men!) are thinking about this read. It will be like our own little blog book club.

Since it’s Friday, here is a little laughter to get the weekend started. Enjoy!

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lifestyle, motherhood, Uncategorized

Reflections at 46

Reflections at 46

This is me.

Those silver highlights running through my hair are from endless grocery store runs, dinner on the table every night, science projects, Halloween costumes and birthday parties fit for a king.

Those lines on my forehead are from late night fevers, broken bones (some unnoticed for a day or two), stitches, college decisions, and the constant question: Am I doing this right?

The puffiness under my eyes from the late nights of waiting to hear that car in the driveway, or hear that boyfriend or girlfriend NOT go in your room, roughly 3,240 school mornings (never late!) the shared tears over broken hearts, bad decisions and sappy movies.

The smile lines around my mouth, as I watched Christmas mornings, prom pics in the front yard, graduations, college acceptances, fearlessness, gumption and leaving home to conquer the world.

The laugh lines around my eyes are the evidence of true living. Laughter is my default mode. I am thankful to have them; there to remind me of how much fun it has been. God, how we laugh.

Today I celebrate 46 years and I am thankful for every one.

For my birthday, I am so pleased to have my Pilates mentor and trainer, Joseph Vargas, PhD, guest post this wonderful piece on aging.

Aging gracefully.  

If by that we mean, “Just let it happen, don’t fight it”  then, hell, no!   I ain’t going down without a fight! Aging chronologically is inevitable and should be welcomed.  After all, we should all get better with age, right?  But, the truth, “getting better with age” does not just happen.

Getting better with age psychologically is the result of examining our lives (previous decisions, choices, actions etc.) and learning from them and honing ourselves into “better”.

Getting better with age physiologically means makes wiser and wiser choices as to how we fuel and exercise this gracious and forgiving vehicle which we inhabit all the years of our lives; being smarter and appropriately more attentive to it than in our wilder days (or should I spell that “daze”?).  Ah, good times ,yes.  And, even better times can be here now and in our future.

Whenever you see someone who’s “older” and looks fit and whose posture (both attitudinal and physical posture) is striking, you can BET that it didn’t “just happen”. Those individuals were interactively involved in this dance we Read the rest

lifestyle, movies

TCM Tuesday & Babs is 70

 

Tuesday, it is all about Barbra Streisand in honor of her 70th birthday. 70! She is still like “buttah”. Six of her films kick-off my Turner Classic Tuesday’s week of classics. Happy Birthday, Barbra!

 

CST schedule

Tuesday April 24/Wednesday April 25

7:00 PM
WAY WE WERE, THE (1973)

A fiery liberal fights to make her marriage to a successful writer work.
Dir: Sydney Pollack Cast: Barbra Streisand , Robert Redford , Bradford Dillman .
C-118 mins, TV-14, CC, Letterbox Format

Hubble. The opening credits are probably my favorite of all time, even with that 70’s disco font.  And that last scene, her gloved hand, combing through his hair.  You just want a different ending every freaking time! One of my favorite movies ever.

9:15 PM
FUNNY GIRL (1968)

Comedienne Fanny Brice fights to prove that she can be the greatest star and find romance even though she isn’t pretty.
Dir: William Wyler Cast: Barbra Streisand , Omar Sharif , Kay Medford .
C-157 mins, TV-PG, CC, Letterbox Format

Streisand’s film debut. She won an Academy Award  for her performance, but had to share it with Katherine Hepburn (The Lion In Winter); the only tie in Oscar history.

12:00 AM
PRINCE OF TIDES, THE (1991)

A troubled man talks to his suicidal sister’s psychiatrist about their family history and falls in love with her in the process.
Dir: Barbra Streisand Cast: Nick Nolte , Barbra Streisand , Blythe Danner .
C-132 mins, TV-MA, CC

Streisand’s real life son, Jason Gould, plays her son in the film. Don Johnson was the original actor slated to play the lead; of course, he was dating Streisand during pre-production. Their relationship had ended by the time she made the film.

2:30 AM
OWL AND THE PUSSYCAT, THE (1970)

When a bookworm gets a prostitute evicted, she moves into his apartment.
Dir: Herbert Ross Cast: Barbra Streisand , George Segal , Robert Klein .
C-97 mins, TV-14, CC, Letterbox Format

Streisand wanted Sydney Poitier (who wouldn’t!) to play the male lead, but the studios balked, claiming audiences were not ready for an interracial couple in a major comedy. That would’ve been amazing!

4:15 AM
FUNNY LADY (1975)

Musical biography of Fanny Brice and her tempestuous marriage to showman Billy Rose.
Dir: Herbert Ross Cast: Barbra Streisand , James Caan , Omar Sharif .
C-138 mins, TV-PG, CC, Letterbox Format

Filmed under duress, maybe? Producer Read the rest

lifestyle, Texas

Spring Fling in The Heights

You’re invited to Shop Heights 19th Street for our annual Spring Fling! Join us for an afternoon of Family Fun and an evening of Relaxation and Live Music. Shop all your favorite stores on 19th Street and enjoy complimentary refreshments and fun activities for the whole family. Relax as the sun starts to set with live music and more. This is a free event and all are welcome. Come help us celebrate SPRING!

We all live in communities that we can support. The small businesses in our neighborhoods, our towns, our cities all need our help to thrive and grow. Do you shop local? Eat local? Spend local?

“One of the greatest things an individual can do to support his or her local community is to patronize its locally owned businesses. Compared to their national competitors, local independent businesses recycle more money back into the local economy and give greater support to a community’s nonprofit and civic needs.” – BALLE (Business Alliance for Living Local Economies)

Mother Nature Network-The Benefits of Buying Local

I love living in The Heights in Houston, Texas. There is a true sense of community that we all share along with a unique pride that Heights residents celebrate, and celebrate well.

We enjoy the best restaurants, live music, art, antiques, clothing, home decor, hardware, nurseries, yoga, Pilates, opera…even, burlesque classes to which, I’m dying to drag my sister. (C’mon, Jen!)

In our timeless tract of the 4th largest city in the nation, we are charmingly hip. Urban and small town. Historic and modern.

A great place for Living Lola.

A great place to come shop, sip and stroll.

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lifestyle, movies

Turner Classic Tuesday

Today is Turner Classic Tuesday. Set your DVR’s and treat yourself to the greatest classic movies ever made.

And, no, Robert Osborne is not my boss, nor do I have any affiliation with Turner Classic Movies.  Just an affinity for the classics.

Here are some of Lola’s picks for this week. You can view the entire schedule at TCM.com.  

Enjoy!

 

(EST)

17 Tuesday

2:45PM LADY L (1965) A beautiful laundress rises through European society. Dir: Peter Ustinov Cast: Sophia Loren , Paul Newman , David Niven . C-109 mins, TV-PG, CC, Letterbox Format

Sophia Loren and Paul Newman…need I say more.

18 Wednesday

10:00 AM PRIDE OF THE YANKEES, THE (1942) Baseball legend Lou Gehrig faces a crippling disease at the height of his success. Dir: Sam Wood Cast: Gary Cooper , Teresa Wright , Babe Ruth BW-128 mins, TV-PG, CC,

Ranked #3 on the American Film Institute’s list of the 10 greatest films in the genre “Sports” in June 2008.                                                                                                                      

19 Thursday

3:15 PM WASP WOMAN, THE (1959) A cosmetics executive’s search for eternal beauty turn her into a monster. Dir: Roger Corman Cast: Susan Cabot , Fred Eisley , Barboura Morris . BW-61 mins, TV-PG

The Tagline: Horror Of The Winged Menace ! I love 50’s horror.

4:30 PM ILLUSTRATED MAN, THE (1969) A man’s tattoos tell frightening tales of the future. Dir: Jack Smight Cast: Rod Steiger , Claire Bloom , Robert Drivas . C-103 mins, TV-14, CC, Letterbox Format

Written by Ray Bradbury who agreed to the movie if Rod Steiger was cast. According to the Guinness Book of World Records, this film has the record for longest time applying make-up each day, at 20 hours. 

20 Friday

3:00 PM DIARY OF ANNE FRANK, THE (1959) A young girl comes of age while hiding from the Nazis. Dir: George Stevens Cast: Millie Perkins , Joseph Schildkraut , Shelley Winters . BW-180 mins, TV-PG, CC, Letterbox Format

Audrey Hepburn turned down the role because she felt it too painful because of her own war experiences. Also, at 30, she felt she was too old to play a teenager convincingly and do the film the justice it deserved.  Spoiler alert: well, yeah…you know.

21 Saturday

6:00 AM PETRIFIED FOREST, THE (1936) An escaped convict holds the customers at a remote desert cantina hostage. Dir: Archie L. Mayo Cast: Leslie Howard , Bette Davis , Genevieve Tobin … Read the rest

empty nesters, Texas

A “chick-less” Easter

Our home has had more than its share of big Easter celebrations with riotous, roller derby style egg hunts, chocolate meltdown overdoses and even an impromptu golf lesson that turned into a trip to the emergency room and 12 stitches.

Yep, I did it. I laid my husband out cold with a Big Bertha Callaway driver, Easter Sunday 1994, in front of about 30 guests, including small children and the elderly.  It was just like when David took down Goliath. With a lot more blood.

This year, in honor of our new Empty Nest freedom, Larkin and I jumped in the Prius (Gas is $4.19 a gallon.) and set out for the open roads of Texas. We packed up our puppy, Juliet, playlists of road tunes and set our destination for a fabulous Texas diner. Larkin and I are simple people. (The key to being together for almost 25 years.)

Last year, when Texas Monthly Magazine came out with their list of Texas’ best diners and places for pie, we knew immediately how we wanted to spend some of our new free time. Eating.

It was a gorgeous day for a road trip and a perfect way to spend our first “kid-less” Easter holiday. We hit Austin, Georgetown, Round Rock, Round Top, Brenham and Hutto, Texas.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hutto, a 100-year-old town, home of the Texan Cafe and Pie Shop. Texas Monthly did not disappoint. Chicken Fried Steak, as big as the county, mashed potatoes, cream gravy, Pork Chops, Mac ‘n Cheese, with green beans and peas for color. All of the Texas food groups were represented.

 

 

 

 

 

 

And, my God, the PIE. The creamiest Coconut Cream pie we have ever had. They have a sign inside the restaurant that says “Pie Fixes Everything.” Indeed, sometimes, it does. The toasted coconut on top of the pie did wonders for me.

Riding out our “pie high” through the back roads of the Texas Hill country, we stopped and took pictures, read the historical markers and even risked our lives by pulling over to the side of the road for the time-honored tradition of taking Texas Bluebonnet pictures.

Getting the perfect spring bluebonnet picture is two-fold. One, don’t get killed by the cars, pick-up trucks and 18 wheelers that are careening down the highway at 90mph. Two, attempt to get a shot that … Read the rest

health

Stand tall

Nne Ekeogbede via Pinterest

Last month, I began my Pilates certification on the apparatus known as the reformer. When I have completed my training, I will be able to teach Pilates. And possibly qualify for the “B” team of Cirque du Soleil.

This is not my first certification rodeo. I am certified in floral design, feng shui and even have a throwback aerobics certification from the 80’s, before they used headset microphones.  I have sat through classes in yoga, meditation, cooking, aromatherapy, brain aging, buddhism and most recently, blogging and web design.

A “Jackie” of all trades.

My Pilates trainer, Joseph, has become my guru and mentor throughout this process. I train with him everyday and, quite honestly, he is one of the most interesting people I have ever met. He is my “Mr.Miyagi.”

A few weeks back, I was working with him on the teaching dialogue of body alignment and I said, “Stand up straight.” Joseph gently corrected me, saying we are not built to stand straight, but to “stand tall.” Obviously, we each have our own curves and sinewy lines, while standing tall and correctly.

Wax on. Wax off. Stand tall.

I am a posture nazi. My daughter was 5’8 when she hit middle school and there was no way in hell I was going to let her shrink her shoulders and play it down. I wanted her to rock it like she was on the runway at NY fashion week. My kids have fond memories of me walking up behind them and jabbing “my bony finger”, as they lovingly recall, into the middle of their back. That was all I had to do when I wanted to correct them in public. At home, I just yelled, “posture”! Too bad I didn’t have “stand tall” in my mother’s arsenal, just yet.

There is so much metaphor to this simple correction. I find it creeps up in my day-to-day. When someone cuts you off in traffic, don’t honk or get angry, stand tall, take the high road, let him pass. If you’re working on something challenging, take a deep breath and stand tall. It’s just one day, you can do anything for one day. If you are unhappy in you current place in life, stand tall. Grab hold of your courage and take small, considered steps you need to better your position and take control of your life.

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