Book Review: Greater Than Grief

In Greater Than Grief, Christena Estby documents her family’s journey through the trials, triumphs, pains and joys of raising four kids, two of whom have a terminal diagnosis of Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy. It is an amazing story of embracing life as it comes and along the way, finding positive coping mechanisms to manage when things…

Book Review: The Secret Garden

I grew up in the heyday of the 90s movies. Disney was still animating by hand, cartoons were a normal part of weekend plans and live-action movies had that specific film-processing quality that made everything feel magical and nostalgic. Such was the case for the 1993 film, The Secret Garden, which I watched with consistent…

Book Review: Until Heaven Parts Us

I have been dancing and teaching dance for the majority of my life, which means that I have met so many wonderful dancers along the way. Our paths don’t always continue to cross after they leave the dance studio where I teach, but thanks to social media, I often follow along their adventures from afar….

Book Review: Persuasion

When the trailer for the new film Persuasion came out, I watched it eagerly with the anticipation of seeing familiar characters and plot lines. Feeling confident that I had read all of the published novels of Jane Austen, I was thoroughly confused when not one scene or theme jogged my memory. Of course, when I…

Book Review: The Woman Who Smashed Codes

I’m not entirely sure how I first knew about The Woman Who Smashed Codes, by Jason Fagone, but it’s been on a list of “books to read” on my phone for a few years. I know I received my copy after putting it on a Christmas wish list one year and was pleased to open…

Book Review: The Bluest Eye

I picked up a copy of Toni Morrison’s Nobel Prize-winning novel, The Bluest Eye sometime last year in a Barnes and Noble haul. As is typical of me, I often buy 4-5 books at a time while already immersed in 2-3 books, so the new titles get temporarily shelved. After finishing World of Wonders last…

Book Review: World of Wonders

Have you ever been so enthralled by a book that you were at once inspired to go create and yet totally contented to sit and just be in the present moment? Such was the case for me in reading World of Wonders: In Praise of Fireflies, Whale Sharks, and Other Astonishments by Aimee Nezhukumatathil. One…

Book Review: In the Garden of Beasts

After devouring The Devil in the White City, Erik Larson’s deep dive into the infamous serial killer who plagued Chicago at the time of the 1893 World Fair, I promptly bought another of the author’s titles at my local Barnes & Noble. Due to a series of life events (and overall lack of interest in…

Book Review: Parisians

In case you’re new here, I’m an American who once upon a decade ago, lived in Paris for a year whilst I completed a master’s degree. That year was one of the best and simultaneously most challenging years of my life. I loved the endless charm of the architecture, the smell of the flowers, the…

A journey in purple (part four)

Day twenty-three: We’re in the final push to the end of the class. This is the time to edit out entire paintings and clean the remaining essentials. I don’t particularly enjoy this phase. It feels rather cold-hearted to abandon something that I created from nothing. As I consider this sentiment, I feel like a true…