Thursday Things

1. I learned something new about myself recently. I have a thorough obsession with Christmas decorations.

This is the first time I’ve had “my own place” to decorate, and I’ve found that it’s downright dangerous for me to venture into any store selling Christmas decorations, because my immediate reaction to nearly everything is that I must buy it, and probably should buy more than one of it. Like maybe 20, for example.

I still have a few things on my Christmas decorations list that I hope to pick up this weekend, and I’m now taking volunteers to be my wallet monitor to keep me from doing something foolish, like buying all of Target.

2. On Tuesday, I went to Les Misérables at the Cadillac Palace with possibly the most random collection of friends possible: my half marathon friend, who I knew through a student organization in college, my Pinterest Party friend, who I lived with last year, and Christina.

Even though I’m almost positive none of my friends actually knew anyone in the group (aside from me, obviously) ahead of time, I think it’s safe to say we all had a fantastic time at the show. I saw Les Mis at the Cadillac Palace a year and a half ago, so it wasn’t *quite* as awesome this time around since I had seen all the cool visual effects before, but it was still an excellent production. I even managed to not sing along during any of the songs (though significant lip synching may or may not have occurred), which was probably best for all involved.

3. Speaking of France, it’s book club week again, and this time we read The Sweet Life in Paris by David Lebovitz.


This book chronicles Lebovitz’s various experiences as an American learning, often through trial and error, the various cultural quirks that make Paris what it is. After living in San Francisco for many years, Lebovitz packed his bags and moved across the ocean to the land of baguettes and fancy cheese.

The Sweet Life in Paris is part cultural guide, part restaurant guide, part cookbook, and all hilarious. Lebovitz has a fantastic sense of humor and kept me laughing throughout the book. I’ve never been to Paris and my knowledge about French culture is pretty minimal, so I really enjoyed learning a bit about one of the most glamorous cities in the world from someone living there. I definitely struggled a bit with all the French vocab thrown in, particularly in the in-my-head pronunciation department (this Spanish student of 8 years likes to pronounce all the letters in foreign language words, which doesn’t fly with French), but it was a great read and I highly recommend it.

(btw, I’d have to say the highlight of the book for me came at the very end where Lebovitz said that Parisian apartments sometimes have the bathroom light switch outside the actual bathroom. That’s how it is in my apartment as well, which I think ups the inherent fabulousity of my place 😉 )

Do you get into holiday decorating?
Have you ever seen a live Broadway show? I’ve never seen any on Broadway (never having been to New York City makes that a challenge), but I’ve seen the national tours of The King and I (pre-glasses…so I more heard The King and I than saw it haha), Peter Pan, Phantom of the Opera, RENT, Wicked, and Les Misérables (twice). Phantom and Les Mis are far and away my favorites. I think I’d like RENT more if I saw it again…I didn’t like Wicked nearly as much as I expected to :/

20 thoughts on “Thursday Things

  1. I didn’t like Wicked as much as I thought I should have either! I remember thinking the second half was better. I have seen a few shows. I could see A Christmas Carol a thousand times 🙂 I have only seen one Broadway Show in NYC – Once – with Erin (eri-thon) in March 🙂

    Do you think you will see Les Mis on the big screen in December?

    • I’m glad I’m not the only one! I was so excited to see it because I knew the soundtrack really well…but it just didn’t meet my expectations. Boo.

      I plan to see the Les Mis movie, yeah. Hopefully it won’t lose its “wow” factor since I just saw it live, but I’m really interested in seeing how they adapted it to the screen.

  2. so i am like a grinch, I don’t decorate for any holiday. granted it is because I a too cheap and just too busy but still. i should probably actually decorate my apartment normally before even thinking about going holiday themed. whoops. in my house at home we usually didn’t decorate or even get a tree till the week or a few days before. ha we were such a lame xmas family. I would love to see that show on broadway, are you excited for the movie? i actually really want to see it.

  3. I WANT to love Christmas decorating. It always looks so amazing once it’s done. But since my husband is a grinch about it I have to do it all myself and that’s no fun for me. Plus, we won’t even be around this year for Christmas so it seems kind of pointless. Sad, huh?

    I’ve seen many, many live shows because my husband used to do IT for Broadway in Chicago and we got comp tickets. I miss that perk. I was also a choir and theater nerd in junior high and high school so we took annual field trips to Chicago to see shows. And, like Kim mentioned, we saw “Once” together on Broadway this past March.

  4. I’d love to see Wicked but I’ve read the book and have heard that the show does not do it justice. Bummer.

    Can you come and decorate my place? I have been too lazy to get out the fake tree and Christmas pillows we usually put out. Last year I went crazy with decorating only to find that a little furball thought that I was putting out a bunch of his toy. It took about four rounds of vacuuming to get the tinsel out of our carpet. I’m also incredibly nervous that if I actually hang bulbs on the tree, I’ll come home to find shattered ornaments and a sideways tree. Maybe in a few years?

    • I started the book Wicked…oh gosh, sometime in high school, so at 4-5 years ago…still haven’t finished it. My bad. Obviously my memory of what happens in the book isn’t so great, but from what I do remember there were a lot of differences between the book and the show.

      Yes! I shall bring Christmas cheer to your apartment, especially since it won’t involve me spending anymore of my money on everything Target has to offer haha. My best friend growing up had a cat that would get all up in their tree and wreak havoc, too! Fortunately that’s never been a problem with my dog–our trees tend to fall over by their own free will instead haha.

  5. I loved Les Mis live! It was awesome to have read the book and saw it live on stage. I really am not a fan of Christmas decorating but I did last year with my roommates at my apartment. My roommates thought I was crazy that I didnt like decorating for Christmas. haha.

  6. I have never seen Les Mis! The movie looks like it is going to be my first interaction with it. That book sounds great, too. I’m glad you enjoyed it. How does one get involved with this book club and know about the books in advance and stuff? I’ve seen Rent a whole bunch of times, Spring Awakening (3 or 4 times), Wicked (I loved it), Phantom of the Opera ( I didn’t like this one as much as I expected to actually – we seem to have opposite tastes), Cats, and Lion King on Broadway – I grew up in CT, so that made it easy. And holiday decorating is awesome! Do it!

    • Pretty much all of the book club stuff is done through our Chicago HLB Facebook group ( You should join and come hang out with us! 🙂

      I really want to see Spring Awakening some day. Definitely a bit more cutting edge than the musicals I’ve gone to, but I love the music I’ve heard from it. You didn’t get to see it with the original cast, did you? Because if you did, I’m just going to die of jealousy over here. Don’t mind me. Haha.

      • Oh, thanks, I’ll definitely join! Yay! And I’m gonna make you jealous then. I did see it with the original cast. We went right away when they started on Broadway. We were really lucky. I’ve seen it since and it isn’t the same.

  7. I had the opportunity to see Phantom on Broadway when I was in high school. And it was amazing. I love going to shows and hope to see more.
    Also I have that same problem with pronouncing every letter in the word. My boyfriend makes fun of me when I really mess up a word. But like David’s quote in the book, “if there’s a letter there, it just seems logical to pronounce it.”

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