For Once In My Life

I’ve mentioned in the past that I’m a fan of PBS, Independent Lens, documentaries, and the like. It’s difficult to describe the “boring adult” phase of life that creeps up on you (well, in my case it was slow), when suddenly you realize that you prefer to watch public television instead of crime dramas, sitcoms or scandalous reality shows. I have been noticing a desire to be indulged by another culture… a need to be inspired by other people’s challenges… or simply LEARN something, gain knowledge, absorb history, fire up my brain cells with exciting facts… You get the picture.

Last night’s feature on Independent Lens was inspirational, to say the least. Again, we see music as a force stronger than we give it credit. The ability to play an instrument, or just be a part of a band, gives life meaning to these people – life we assume to be lower than the rest of us. We should never underestimate the power of a music program. After I saw this film I firmly declared it is yet another reason that music should be taught to all children, in all schools, of all mental and physical capacities. Amen.

For Once in My Life | Documentary on Spirit of Goodwill Band | Independent Lens | PBS


Chihuly at night

One of the nice things about living in the Nashville area is the “small town, yet big city feel.” We get to see musical talent and art exhibits without an overly crazy or impossible wait. Sometimes it’s so easy to access world class cultural experiences, I can hardly tell I’m not living on either coast. Well, that might be a bit over the top…

A prime example of this Mid-South small town benefit was the installment of Dale Chihuly’s glass sculptures at Cheekwood Botanical Gardens. Did I say easily accessible and not overly crazy? Well, that changed for us when we tried to have a dinner & art date night with some friends. The line of cars went down the block, around the bend and down another block…We had to try the following week, and a bit earlier in the evening. With better planning it was a success. Chihuly Nights at Cheekwood was so popular that the exhibit was extended a couple of weeks past its deadline!

The weather turned frigid on us but it was a surreal experience nonetheless. Not every piece or installation was cleverly lit, but each one was certainly unique and beautifully created. I did hear, however, that the exhibit was pretty spectacular during the daytime as well.

These photos were the best of the lot that I captured with my little digital doohickey. This post is so late because my doohickey decided to go all doodoo on me and not function properly. The last couple of posts have featured pictures taken with my phone (boo), and will continue as such until I save up moolah for another doodah (…doodah….).

luxurytyme.com

I have been in awe of Chihuly since my first visit to the Bellagio Resort in Vegas. A-freakin-MAZING. There are also great documentary films of his installations that you can get at the library. It’s mesmerizing, really.

Nashville gems

union_station

One of downtown Nashville’s gems is Union Station. It is located next door to the Frist Center, the Flying Saucer, and just blocks away from both the Gulch and Lower Broad. If you haven’t made a visit to the Union Station lobby, you’ll be pleasantly surprised at how beautiful it is. It is fairly small so it is “cozy,” as far as elaborately detailed train stations go. They have renovated the hotel and refreshed the paint so that it looks like a modern, yet still vintage hang. A great place to take visitors for a photo opp! I love the eclectic collection of chairs.

Union_lobby

What struck me today was the hotel’s restaurant menu that was posted in the lobby. A $$$ restaurant, Prime 108, serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner.

“The signature menu is derived from the finest products available including organic vegetables, hormone free meats, and sustainable seafood.”

Way to go, Wyndham. Maybe we’ll hit that on a future date night!

Blog Favorite: Make Grow Gather by Kelly Wilkinson

There are a LOT of blogs out there to help inspire me as a new blogger, but there is one that somehow fits into a neat little gift that I can’t wait to open! When I see there is a new post I get a happy feeling and look forward to to the *click click* of my mouse. A bit nerdy for me to admit? Maybe. Maybe it’s what we have in common – the middle sister thing…or the Bay Area thing…or perhaps the “doing everything I want to be doing” thing? Whatever it is, I really recommend Make Grow Gather. Give it a whirl and you may discover what you love about Kelly’s world too.

Oh, and I can’t forget to mention the fabulous giveaway this weekend! Leave a comment for Kelly and you’ll be in the running for a pair of beautiful napkins and a gorgeous tote from Flowie (Bay Area designer, Yaling, that used to live in my old ‘hood).

Cloth napkins are a staple in our kitchen and dining room. It’s so much easier to throw them in the wash after a few uses (yes, keep yours in your own place setting everyday) than to buy paper napkins every month. Well, Yaling’s napkins would be for the weekends with our guests! Beauty oozes all over her site, so please give it a browse.

Image via MakeGrowGather via Flowie

Date Night!

We called in the babysitter last night (the fabulous Katie) and headed out to the bookstore. Yes, our date night was at the bookstore! We looked at the movies for a bit and marveled at how they didn’t have “This Is It” for sale on the anniversary of MJ’s demise… We browsed the books a bit, then sat and had coffee with a couple of magazines. Mike looked at how to build your own green home and I explored the world of Mary Jane Butters in her magazine, Mary Jane’s Farm. I left the store holding hands with my date, mocha’d up, and feeling very good about my new resource. Check her out, as well as her “farmgirl friends.”

image: craftingagreenworld.com

So, what have you done recently for a date night?