Country Living...Island Dreaming

April 30, 2015

Finding Neverland on Broadway

As I mentioned in my last post, I made two trips into New York last week.

On my first trip, my husband and I attended a movie screening at the Tribeca Film Festival.  The second trip was on all day girls trip to see Finding Neverland on Broadway!

Six of us headed into the city on one of the most beautiful Saturdays we've had all spring.  Our first stop was the Lunt-Fontanne Theatre for the matinee.

We all feared that being at a matinee, we might end up with an understudy for one of the main roles.  I think I am permanently scarred from the time my mom and I arrived for Victor Victoria only to find that Julie Andrews' part would be played by her understudy!  So, when we noticed those little white pieces of paper dropping out of everyone's playbills, we couldn't open ours fast enough to check!  Luckily, the main roles were all in tact - whew!

We were then able to relax as we settled into our orchestra seats with our Neverland themed mixed drinks!

I mean, c'mon, how could we resist these?...
I had a Hook's Right Hook. - yum!
 Somehow the bottom of the menu got cut off,
(and we hadn't even had a drink when we took this picture!)

Let me start by saying that I went into this play knowing absolutely nothing about the story line.  (It is so out of character for me to not read up on something before I see it!)  All I knew was the play told the story of how Peter Pan was created.  I never even saw the Oscar winning film of the same name (with Johnny Depp and Kate Winslet).  I think it came out around the time when I was just starting my family...those baby-fog years!  In a way, I am actually glad I didn't know the story line going in.  It made the show that much more exciting for me!

For those of you who don't know, Finding Neverland follows the story of how London playwright, J.M. Barrie meets a widow named Sylvia who has four young sons.  Barrie's playful demeanor makes it easy for him to develop a relationship with the family who later becomes the inspiration for Peter Pan.

Finding Neverland stars Matthew Morrison - (that cutie from Glee) and Kelsey Grammer who I have enjoyed watching most of my life!  Both of them gave incredible performances and had me smiling throughout the play...well except for the sad parts.  I really didn't expect it to be so moving but I honestly loved every minute of it!  Funny, sad, bittersweet and magical...what more could you want in a play?

What more could you want?  How about meeting some of the cast? After the show, we hung out by the stage door...just in case!

Matthew Morrison

One of the boys.

Carolee Carmello

Paul Slade Smith
Who I must say was a doll.  He took the time to chat and laugh with us.
(He played Mr. Henshaw and dressed up as Nana the dog for the "play" scene in the show.)

And speaking of Nana...

I caught up with the dog handlers as they were leaving the theater with these two cuties!  Apparently, they use twin dogs (like the Olsen twins!) to play the part of Nana.  How nice of them to pose for us!

I couldn't resist...

Rosie was jealous...

If you are in New York, I definitely recommend you see Finding Neverland!

We ended the day with an early dinner at Aquagrill down in SoHo.  LOVED it!  So many incredible choices on the menu and our waiter was a character!  We shared a bunch of appetizers and half the table sampled a variety of oysters.  I am not a big oyster fan but the three of them were in heaven!  If you are an oyster lover, this is the restaurant you need to visit in New York.   For dinner, I devoured the Halibut special which could not have been more delicious...and don't even get me started on the desserts!  Yes, we all managed to find room for them!  Which reminds me, I need to go for a walk!

Great day, great company
and a reminder that we have to plan more outings like this one!

Have you seen any plays lately?

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April 27, 2015

Tribeca Film Festival - A Private Movie Screening

Last week, my husband and I were fortunate enough to be invited to a private movie screening at the Tribeca Film Festival in New York.

Of course, I was giddy with excitement at the prospect of attending such an acclaimed event!

But my heart sank when I learned of the gut wrenching subject matter of the movie.  Could I really sit through a film centered around the lives of two parents who are struggling with the disappearance of their young son?

I just don't see movies like this.  They stay with me.  They haunt me.  I don't even read books covering this kind of material because they don't  fit in with "my reading requirements".  Maybe before I became a mom, I would have thought differently but the idea was just too frightening for me.

The movie was Meadowland.

And being the brave, adventurous person I am, (huge LOL), I agreed to attend the screening.  After all, maybe one of the cute actors (Luke Wilson or Mark Feuerstein) would be there.  Spoiler alert...they weren't!

We began the evening with drinks and dinner at the Tribeca Grill because after all, the restaurant is co-owned by Robert Di Niro, one of the founders of the Tribeca Film Festival!  

Not only was the food exceptional but the service was outstanding!

And after a glass of wine (or two),
the idea of the movie screening was more exciting than scary!

Once Meadowland began, we were immediately drawn into the tragic lives of the characters and could not break free from from their agonizing world until the very last second of the movie.  There was no lull where I would remind myself I needed to pick up a gallon of milk in the morning.  My only thoughts were the movie...and my own kids.  All I can say is...Wow.

I read a movie review this morning - The Guardian and realized that any recap that I may attempt to write cannot do it justice!  Check it out if you are interested in more details of the story line.

After the viewing, we had the opportunity to sit for a Q&A session.  Olivia Wilde (who played the main character, Sarah) expressed how greatly she desired to play the character when learning of the role.  Honestly, I don't think anyone else could have come close to capturing the raw, emotional state of that character.  The part was truly meant for her.  It was equally intriguing to get inside the head of the director, Reed Morano to hear her thoughts and motivation for specific scenes.  With her background in cinematography, she was able to give the audience the full experience of assimilating into the world of the characters.  

The one in the spotlight whose face you cannot see is Olivia Wilde.

The making of the movie was obviously a very emotional ride for everyone involved in creating it as it was for those of us watching it!   As mentioned, I had my hesitations about even attending the viewing but I must say, I was completely blown away.  I will be shocked if the movie isn't nominated for several awards come Oscar season!

You can read more about this movie and other film festival events here - Tribeca Film Festival

And because one trip to New York last week was not enough, stop by tomorrow and I will fill you in on my girls day out on Broadway.  

From Meadowland to Finding Neverland!
What a week!

Can you recommend any new movies?


April 10, 2015

The Door Dilemma - Raised Panel or Shaker

Through all the craziness these past few weeks...
(I haven't even mentioned that my poor Rosie ate something bad two weeks ago and spent a day at the vet with an IV, xrays, blood work etc...She's okay now but so scary!)

As I was saying, I somehow managed to make all the necessary decisions and order my kitchen cabinets - yay!  They should be arriving in about 6 weeks.

The other night, I happened to leave a door sample sitting on my kitchen counter.  My husband looks at it and says, "Those aren't the cabinets we are getting, are they?"  (Shoot me now...)  "Yes, they are.  You don't like them?"...I asked.  "They look dirty.", he replied.  (The sample had a glazing on it, even though I don't think I am doing a glaze.) 

Why is it that someone around here is second guessing my decisions and has suddenly developed an interest in decorating?  This brought back a flashback to our wedding planning when suddenly he needed to be involved in choosing the china.  Yeah, my golfer, former college football player, doesn't care about clothes, man's man of a husband suddenly cares about making the kitchen pretty!  Ugh.  

So the next day, my very patient, saint-of-a-kitchen-designer dropped off a bunch of door samples to look over again.  I had to show my husband what a raised panel looked like without the glazing (and I had to reassure myself that I made the right decision because I still loved the shaker look as well!)  The cabinet order had already been placed at this point so I had to decide quickly!

Even though I had debated on shaker for a while, my 'decorator' husband was definitely against that one because he thought they looked too much like the Vermont ski house...
I guess he just can't envision these in white...

So I went back to focusing on raised panel, which I always loved anyway.  After all, many of my favorite kitchens have raised panel cabinets and it helped to show my husband these inspiration pictures.

Like I said, the cabinets will be White Dove (but not glazed like the above picture) the island will be stained and the floors will be wood (but a little lighter than the floors above.)

Here's another look I love:

I think I might even buy those lanterns above.  I love how the floor and beams make the kitchen less formal.  Too bad I won't be adding beams (or marble) to mine...

Here's another example of the white with the stained island.  My floors will never be that shiny though!  (Not with kids and a golden retriever!)
source unknown

And probably my favorite kitchen:

This is the view I envision when you look in the kitchen from my dining room.  

Just to refresh your memory - here is what the view looks like now...

And once again,
here is what it could look like...ahhh
As you can see, all the photos above have raised panel doors, yet most all white kitchens we see these days have shaker doors.  Up until this very moment I wonder if I made the right decision.  I am hoping that the raised panel will always be classic.

There are so many kitchens with shaker cabinets that I absolutely adore as well:

Love this...
via Houzz

Then there is another one of my favorites
that kind of looks shaker but is a simple raised panel. 
via Houzz

I keep going back to the look of a traditional raised panel door.
In fact, this was my inspiration picture (about 3 years ago) 
when we decided to renovate the kitchen...

I still love the look and needless to say I didn't change my order.  My husband feels a little more comfortable with my choice.  I am sure my kitchen designer is relieved even though I will probably second guess my upcoming decisions - counters, back splash, sink, lighting...

What are your thoughts on white kitchens?

Do you prefer a shaker or raised panel cabinet?
Is one more timeless than the other?
(Don't worry, you won't stress me out if you choose shaker!)


April 6, 2015

Fresh Start to the Week

We are back from our spring break ski trip in Vermont.  I will be spending the day enjoying the warm sunny weather before the rain arrives this week....

Thanks to everyone who commented and emailed 
these past couple of weeks.

Your kind words meant so much to me and
I feel so blessed to be part of 
such a wonderful blogging community!

Enjoy your Monday!

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