Back in September, when we took a month off, did you think we had fallen off the face of the earth? Did you even notice? Well, we didn’t exactly fall off the face of the earth but we did get caught up in life’s shifting and resettling. We’ve always agreed that we would both rather take a pause from posting, and be kind to ourselves than post less-than content. So, once again (as tends to be our wont this time of year) we regrouped and got a new perspective on the blog. Often during these pauses we come back to the table with ideas and ways for the blog to better serve ourselves and ultimately our readers.
Going forward, in our renewed effort to be better bloggers, we are (once again) going to shake it up a little. But only a little. Although we have loved this past year of exclusively writing with each other, we each have interests that we do not share with each other but we do share with our readers. But we also still want to blog together? So, we want to reopen that door of blogging separately but still blog together just as often. Are you still with us? We are going to continue our three recurring posts that we both enjoy writing and believe are fun to read too- and we’ll write these together. We are going to continue the “Fun Things To Do” series- after all, it’s our cornerstone and basis for the blog itself. And we are going to continue the “Ain’t that Some Shit” series because it is so encompassing and is a reader favorite. It gives us each an opportunity to open a window to our worlds and share what is on our minds with you. We plan to sandwich the “Fun Things to Do” posts and “Ain’t that Some Shit” posts with individual posts. Yes! Individual posts are back. And the playlists? Well, we will do those together (obviously) and these will be peppered into the rotation sporadically, generally when a month has five weeks. It works out quite well, actually!
Are you ready 2017? We’re coming for you. So, without further ado:
I have to say… I am listening to pretty much the same old shit. I do listen to the radio and I do hear a catchy song here and there and I think to myself, oh! I need to remember that so that I can report on it— but, guess what— I don’t remember a single one. I know, fail. I will say this though, from the moment we finished eating Thanksgiving dinner, we started listening to the Christmas Blues channel on Pandora. If you have never listened to that channel, you should check it out. I have a new favorite Christmas song: Little Red Rooster by Tom Petty. Yes, the Grateful Dead did it first, and I love them but- Tom Petty brought this song home!
Bub and I went round and round- he made fun of me, even made me doubt myself. But, damnit- Tom Petty turned Little Red Rooster into a Christmas song and it’s awesome.
In the previous installment of Fun Things to Do, Bruno Mars, had just dropped two singles from his 24K Magic album. He has since released the complete album and man is it the fuego. There is really something for everyone and not a loser in the bunch. Seriously. I tried to put together a list of notable tracks, and ended listing the entire album. The kids got talent: performer, songwriter, producer… it’s hard to hate on the super-commercial aspect of his music when it is legitimately amazing. The references are familiar, but with a fresh twist. Even James Brown would be impressed.
Speaking of dropping songs from a new album, Mayer Hawthorne has done it again and has a new album coming imminently. I know! So soon! There are only three tracks, but he also includes the instrumental tracks to those songs, which I love. When the production is just as cool as the song, you know you’ve got a winner. (See also: Lovage’s Music to Make Music to Your Old Lady By, which is another great example of the instrumental being as cool as the album.) It’s really cool to watch Mayer Hawthorne evolve.
Like always, I’ve also been jamming on our last playlist. But, heads up, we’ve also been crafting up our latest playlist which we will share this month. After my recent trip through Tennessee, my part of the playlist is very heavy on Nashville and Memphis flavor.
Well, here’s a new record. Oh wait, it’s the same old song- I’m not reading anything new. I am not even reading the magazines I subscribed to last year. Yeah, no and they are great magazines! I’m not reading much of anything. I do read the daily reflection, most days, from Journey to the Heart– but, sad to say- my reading ends there. I am totally 100% open to any suggestions that you might have. There is one caveat- I completely prefer non-fiction. I know, it’s a kicker. If you have a good blog suggestion, I’m open to that too. Or any online outlet- Oh! Wait! I read the Skimm most days too! I forgot about that one! And honestly, if you are not reading the Skimm, you need to be.
I’ve found another marvelous entry for my “perfect somnambulant literature” category. The last month or so, I’ve been working my way through The Complete Works of Elizabeth Gaskell. Gaskell, a Victorian writer, is basically one generation forward from Jane Austen. Gaskell’s works were originally published serially (like Dickens), so the chapters are quite self-sufficient. Like Austen, there is a thorough examination of the various class stations, but this time in Victorian England! Such excite! Well, maybe not… but for lovers of that ilk, it is totally worth the read. I’ve recently finished Mary Barton (three stars) and am working my way through Cranford (a novel that proudly has no structure- and yet still works).
Okay. I have to say that I am late to the game, but I just binge watched Stranger Things and it is really fantastic. I know why everyone raves about it. And now, I know why. It is so good. Those kids- are incredible and Winona– although her role is reminiscent of Girl Interrupted– she too is great in her Stranger Things role. If you are late getting to the Stranger Things party- you need to get on the bus because it’s real good.
But also, Bub and I are keeping up with Snoop and Martha’s Potluck Dinner!
Yes, it’s funny. Yes, it’s scripted. Yes, it’s kinda over the top. Kinda surprisingly, Snoop is better at reading the cue cards. However, Martha holds her own. The two of them do have an uncanny chemistry that leaves little doubt that they are friends outside of the show.
Tis the season for Top Chef. It really is the gold-standard of food-based reality shows. This season is in Charleston, which makes it especially awesome. The Bachelor features some of the most comedic editing in the game and is back with another season, if that is your thing. Crazy Ex-Girlfriend is also back and better than ever. I’ve also been plowing through Comedy Bang! Bang! and hate that it took me this long to give it a shot. It’s on Netflix and perfect if you are looking for something unexpected. Some of the gags don’t always pay off, but oh so many of them do! Equal parts improv, sketch comedy, and late-night talk show. Let me ask you this? Do you like Weird Al? Then you’ll like this. He’s also a frequent guest.
I haven’t caught it yet because I’ve been traveling, but I’m looking forward to Nashville returning on a new network. See what changes there are, if any. Got lots of shows on my to-do list but have been so busy doing actual stuff that it’s been hard to keep up. Such a first world problem.
Okay. I have three things that seem to be taking up my time- 2 that I am completely obsessed with- even though I am kinda trying to suppress one- and one that I want to put out into the universe because the more people know about it, the better chance I have to sticking to it… So, the first thing is I have been playing this new game:
You have to earn stars by solving boards and then use the stars to fix up your garden. It really is fun. And my Boss Lady has turned me onto Google Rewards… you answer questions to surveys and you earn money that can be used to pay for stuff in your games. I just got started so I haven’t earned much but, I see that as free money and won’t mind a bit spending it on some things to enhance my game performance!!
And then, I am also slightly obsessed with my Ebay app. Yep, I am addicted to shopping on Ebay. There is something about getting a name brand item at basement prices. Love it. Although it adds up quick- so, I have to check myself before I spend too much. It’s fun though.
And finally- the third thing I am doing that I want to get out into the universe- I am trying to be on a diet. I hate that word. But, it’s true. I am trying to eat much better and even trying to exercise. Pick yourself up off the floor, yes, I am trying to get my exercise on. I have just gotten rather fluffy in the last year and a half and I need to shed some LBs. So- here I am. I am committed to 6 weeks. And when I get to the six week mark, I am going to reassess my situation, adjust and go from there. I will keep you posted.
I’ve been traveling. Such travel. Chicago, Seattle, Atlanta, Nashville, Memphis…. and I fly back to LAX this Tuesday! I have had some amazing adventures in the intervening editions of Fun Things To Do. Perhaps I’ll do a photo drop on my individual post in a few weeks! When I’ve recovered from strep that is. That is also something I’ve been doing. Though it hasn’t been very fun. The adventuring and traveling, yes. The recovering from said adventuring, less so. Hence the two day delay on this post! Oof.
Coralie will be blogging by herself next week for the first time in a year. And the week after that we will blogging together to fill you in all the shit going on in our lives. Week after that, Leigh will be blogging by herself. We are looking forward to these changes in the schedule. We thank our readers for hanging in there with us each time we make format changes. It is a lesson to us that ours lives are in constant motion and we need to stay flexible to keep up with the ebb and flow. And so, that concludes the January 2017 edition of Fun Things To Do. As always we want to hear any suggestion you have in these categories. Some of our favorite things have been reader suggestions!