Archive for People

Central Station (Central do Brasil)

Central Station is a movie made in 1998 from Brazil. Winner of Best Picture at the Berlin Film Festival. Winner of Best Foreign Language Film at Golden Globe. Directed by Walter Salles and written by Marcos Bernstein and João Emanuel Carneiro. It is one of my all time favorite movie and I thought I should make note of it here. I think this film is worth watching and remembering. I just wish there were more films like this is in production these days. centralstation

Despite the fact that it is 10 years old doesn’t even take away from it. The story itself is timeless. The story begins in the busy central bus station in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. It’s very interesting to see the diversity of the people living in the city. Each one of them has their own story, but this movie is the story of a boy in search of a father he has never known. In a twist of fate, his mother dies in a bus accident and a retired school teacher working at the bus station becomes his only friend. The retired teacher then agrees to help the boy find his father in the outskirt of the country. And that is where the real journey begins.

There is a magical chemistry between the young boy and the retired teacher. The casting was perfect and the director did a great job. I don’t want to spoil the movie for anyone, so get the DVD and watch this movie for yourself. But there is a bitter-sweet ending, and I think that is what makes it unforgettable.

Here is a trailer on Youtube. And nice soundtrack too.


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Book Review: Nice to Come Home To

I haven’t been reading much fiction lately, but I do try to read one once in a while. I think the last fiction I read and enjoyed was by Margaret Atwood. The latest fiction that I’ve read recently is Nice to Come Home To by Rebecca Flowers


The story was pretty simple and reminded me of something Lifetime TV would produce. Or even along the line of Gilmore Girls, but for the over 30 year old crowd. It was well written, the characters are believable and lovable. Especially the main character, Prudence. She would be someone you could see as a friend or sister. She makes you want to cheer for her all the way and see that things turn out well for her. And in the end everything did wrap up nicely, despite a few pitfalls.

There isn’t much to contemplate after reading this book, but merely entertaining.  But I did come out thinking that there are second chances in life.  It reminds you to not be too hard on yourself if the plans you made didn’t turn out exactly as you wanted.

Actually I only picked out the book because of the title and the book cover design. Especially with the pretty dress boutique. I know it’s funny, I’m judging a book by it’s cover. The cover is actually more stylish then the book itself. So that was a good marketing move from the publishers.

Here is nice little synopsis from Publishers Weekly:

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The Fruit Tree Planting Foundation

Sometimes there seem to be more charities out there then we knew existed. There are charities for children and abandoned animals. Even one for fruit trees, at least for growing more fruit trees. The Fruit Tree Planting Foundation from San Diego, Ca is one charity that is dedicated to planting fruitful trees and plants to benefit the environment around the world. I think this is a great idea as it helps teach people to be empowered by growing their own food and also sustain the environment too. The charity’s primary mission is to plant and help others plant a collective total of 18 billion organic fruit trees. These programs are aimed at enriching the environment, providing nutritious food sources for wild and rescued animals. And to improve human health by bringing delicious, fresh, locally grown raw fruits and vegetables in their area.


Papaya tree planted in Kenya. Photo from FTPFoundation.

The charity has already planted trees in many locations throught the U.S., Africa, and India. My favorite part of the project is “Orchards for Animals” which provide rescued animals sanctuaries with fruit trees for shade, shelter, and healthy diets. As the trees mature, animals can then eat the fruits and forage for more. During times of extreme heat or precipitation, the animals can seek shade and shelter under the trees. Fruit trees allow for the most natural diet available to animals, plucked fresh off the tree with no chemicals or pesticides. One of the Farm Sanctuary is located in Orland, California. They planted 50 fruit trees. The trees will provide shade and foraging opportunities for rescued animals.


Another sample of other neat things provided by the program took place in Florida.

Fruit Tree Workshop & Giveaway in Fort Lauderdale, Florida

“In November of 2008, FTPF partnered with the Fort Lauderdale Parks & Recreation Department, in a program made possible by Absolut, to implement a a free fruit tree give-away at three city parks and delivered a unique interactive workshop to teach fruit tree enthusiasts about proper planting and care. The program resulted in 671 fruit trees—including mangos, avocados, carambolas, grapefruits, oranges, and tangelos—being distributed to city residents. The effort trained nearly 100 workshop participants on how to plant trees and help restore an area that has lost countless trees in recent years due to hurricane damage—while fighting global warming and providing healthy nutrition at the same time.” Wow! What a great idea. I wish I lived in Florida with a huge backyard. Read the rest of this entry »

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5 Ingredients of Happiness

I came across James Delrojo’s 5 ingredients of happiness recently. I have always been a glass is half full kind of person, so I relate very well to all of the 5 ingredients he listed. James Delrojo began his professional career as a psychologist. He had a private practice helping business people and sports people develop the mind set and mental strategies they needed to achieve excellence in their field. James is an author, speaker, businessman, & mentor.


Photo credit: Getty Images from BBC News

1. Gratitude
Happy people are grateful and appreciative of what they have, whatever that may be. They always find something good and positive in their circumstances. This attitude of gratitude is the foundation stone on which happiness is built.

By way of contrast unhappy people are not grateful or appreciative of anything in their world. They are constantly focused on the fact that there is something that they don’t have. They live in lack and as a result their spirit is lacking. Nothing ever makes them truly happy.

2. Passion
Happy people are passionate people. It could be a passion for knowledge. It could be a passion for success. It could be a passion for helping others. It could be any passion at all, as long as it truly inspires the person to become more than they are now.

The unhappy person is devoid of passion. They are complacent or apathetic. They have no inspiration in their life, nothing to urge them to evolve and grow into a more developed person. As a result they tend to go around in circles; each year is similar to the year before. They are in a spiritual rut.

3. Challenge
Happy people have a challenge that they are pursuing. It could be a purely spiritual challenge such as finding enlightenment or it could be a commercial challenge such as building a successful business. It could be a sporting challenge such a winning a medal in the Olympics or it could be a career challenge. The important ingredients of the challenge are that it is in the area of the person’s passion and that it is big enough to be inspiring but not so big as to be overwhelming.

The unhappy person avoids challenges. They are waiting for someone or something to give them happiness. They believe that happiness is outside of them and that any form of challenge is work to be avoided. Read the rest of this entry »

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Boden Inspired Cat & Coat

I’m just going to ramble about kids clothing and coats today. All my cousins and their kids live out of state, so I rarely get to see them. And they all have boys, except we did get three more little girls in the family in the past years. I used to send them cute little dresses, but they just out grow them so fast! So I have to stick with better gifts next time.


Anyway, I love this cute little applique cat shirt from Boden UK. It’s very crafty looking. They do have a chidren’s catalogue too, Mini Boden. I just love looking at the pics of all the cute kids and their colorful outfits. One of the customers wrote, “we have the blue pony top for my 5 year old daughter, the top is lovely, really good fitting, very good quality material that doesn’t stretch or shrink in the wash, and the colours are very vibrant.”

coatThis is another pretty dress coat from Boden (on the right). But I found one on sale at Macy’s just like it. Mine is not the happy violet color, but more chocolate brown with a subtle sheen. The tailor is good and it drapes nicely. It’s a dress coat, so it’s not bulky at all and very light.

Coat shopping is usually dreadful for me, but once I put on the Macy’s coat, it just felt perfect. So now I have another classic cut dress coat for my coat collection. Again, it’s a dress coat, so not exactly made for cold weather. But it’s perfect for northern California autumn.

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Cutest Puppy

I’m not the one to gush about celebrities at all. I am more into the old Hollywood, with ladies like Audrey Hepburn and gentlemen like Gregory Peck. But when it comes to puppies, I can never resist. And I read that Audrey had a cute yorkie too.

Then I saw this picture of Blake Lively from the LA Times and thought what a cute puppy. I really, really want one of these cutie pie. I hope the apricot toy poodle doesn’t just become fashion accessory for her. It would be a shame, as shameful as when parents try to dress up their toddlers as little mini hipsters.

But I don’t think Blake will just toss the puppy aside, she seem to be caring enough person who take on the responsibility of puppy caretaker. Not to mention, Blake already has good fashion sense, her style is simple yet funky. I like the simple black top with jeans & piles of glass bead-like necklaces too.

Photo by LA Times,

But what would be even better then fashion… is to treat your pet with love and kindness. And the ones that need some love can be found at your local animal shelter. These days, it’s easy to find rescue groups in your area via the internet. They have rescue groups for poodles, dalmations, yorkies, and many more.

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Chicago Apartment

Dana from Chicago shared a lovely picture of her quiet sleeping quarter at Apartment Therapy. MR would really love this room. Less so my style, but I do love the simplicity of it all.

The large windows make it so much brighter. And I think the bed looks really comfy. I would probably have a difficult time getting out of this bed. And I also like the idea of the couch in the bedroom. It really adds to the comfort and cozy factor here. It’s great to lounge on the couch when you don’t want to mess with fixing your sheets again. The less clean up time, the better for me.

Great job on the interior design of your sleeping quarter Dana!

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