The 12 Highlights of the Year

The Gregorian calendar and the Julian calendar both consist of the same following twelve months. 2015 wasn’t different from tradition, January to December, non stop, no surrender.

Rough, the best adjective to describe my year. Never uneven, never exemplary as I wanted it to be, yet I maybe have learnt how to get satisfactions anyway from bad situations and relationships. And I am building a zero-fuck mentality that I’ll bring along in 2016 for sure.

I am getting ready to celebrate NYE, and I just wanted to spend few words and force myself to find one good thing about every months. Some were particularly hard, but here it is.

 

  • January – Walk in the snow

The first day of 2015 I went for a walk in the snow. I started planning and decided about a big trip, that came true in October. That day I wrote

“Go. Discover. And then let’s meet somewhere halfway.”

san vito

  • February – Celebrating Carnevale

I went to Italy for a weekend fuelled by celebrations. My friends’ concert, and Carnevale. I dressed up like Katniss and my brother was Gale. We sang and danced. Happy times.

katniss

 

  • March – Celebratory Copenhagen and Tropical Island

Back enjoying travelling, a quick pre-birthday city escape to Copenhagen (long-due, see the blog post I wrote HERE) and a tropical day in the craziest place in Germany, Tropical Island (see Casey Neistat’s video HERE to understand). And happy birthday.

DSCF1697

tropical

 

  • April – Driving in a Baltic Island

I spent Easter driving in Rüggen island, North Rhine-Westphalia (Germany). Fields, wild beaches, cold sea, wind, sun. The cold shaping our laughters. A nice stay indeed. Highly recommended.

baltic

 

  • May – I ran my first competitive run with my father.

I sucked. I enjoyed it. I’ll do it again and work with my broken lungs and ankle to improve.

berlin

 

  • June – Some great sunsets in Berlin.

We had warm days, and stunning sunsets. I remember a beautiful evening with  barbecue and beers at the park. It felt like summer, and it felt good. More of those, please.

tempelhof

 

  • July – Rooftop Summer Terraces

Good vibes at the end of July, chilling with Jesus. Yet again, more of those, and more of my best friend,  please.

IMG_0131[1].JPG

 

  • August – My Brother in Berlin

He came and stayed with me for few weeks. It’s quite a challenge to host a teen, but also quite a tender reward to know that he – in his way – cares to stay with you. Also, no matter how big or old is growing, I can still remind him to brush his teeth.

DSCN7009 copy

 

  • September – I got married!

I had the pleasure to experience marriage for almost 2 days. On Facebook. With an utter stranger. Friends went full ballistic. Fun experience. Unfortunately, we don’t communicate anymore. I must have been a bad wife, I guess… Friends say he doesn’t deserve me. LOLz

wedding filippo valeria

 

  • October – Trip To South-East Asia

The core of the year was October and my big trip in SEA. I’m still writing about it, since there is lots to talk about. I can’t wait to organise another big trip like that.

P1040014

 

  • November – Adrian Bliss’ vlogs

I have watched lots of Youtube lately, mostly boredom-induced. I absolutely loved Adrain Bliss’ parody of daily vloggers, and I spent a joyful month waiting every evenng for the next video to come out. More than just parody, the videos turned in a nice storytelling, that I fully enjoyed. You can watch the entire month here: Vlogvember

Props also to the original music

 

  • December – The Leftovers season 2 and New Puppy

The Leftovers season 2 was unbelievably good. Gripping performance and storytelling, superb soundtrack. I had a binge and the last episodes left me in a state of trance, so much compelling and thoughtful. High quality tv, that should deserve more attention. I can’t wait for season 3.

Also, we welcomed a new puppy in the family. She’s a rascal. 🙂 Welcome Maya.

j+m

Spring 2015 – Favourites

Hello lovely people.
I’m back to talk about my seasonal favourites, spanning through music, film, radio and much more.

This Spring ran too fast. I got obsessed over few songs, that are included in my playlist. I couldn’t find great movie, though. Or game-changing books to be honest. I stayed more outdoors, so podcasts were much preferred. I also negletted the blog, big time, soz.

Well, let’s start with the favourites, let me know what you think.

Enjoy and bring joy with you, always.

Val

Spring

Music

On the Playlist:

in the playlist

P.S.: For the romantic souls out there, listen to the last song, it’s a live, and the musician explains the story behind the song *hearts hearts hearts*

Flowers

I bought a plant of Leontopodium alpinum, maybe better known as edelweiss, the alpine flower that for me it’s typical to see in my mountains. Sometimes you can’t escape your origins, and the flowers are a great reminder of those beautiful places.

edelweiss

Film

As I said before, nothing much has caught my interest in the past three month, and ongoing. Am I getting too old and choosy to find a movie great, or was this Spring a low season in terms of great movies? I am not into science fiction and revival of the 90s, maybe that’s my problem. Anyway:

Short Term 12 is the one I still remember. I loved it. Simple as that.

It’s a secret how I am attracted to teen comedies. I watched Adult Word and kinda enjoyed it. It’s not great, but enjoyable if you are alone one night, have to wake up early the next day, and just need something to watch. Gosh, that’s being a film critic, you reckon?

The chick from Ruby Sparks picks the movies to be in with a criteria. I still haven’t figured out if it’s a winning pick, because it’s always something a bit indie, but also a bit loser-ish. Your choice. I kinda enjoyed, at least enough to put it here: In Your Eyes.

Book

I read some crappy rom novel by British authors. I am not even giving the titles out, not worthy. But these books work the magic with me to keep me awake while traveling and flying, and helps me keeping up with the British slang. The plots are so fabricated though. Despite everything, I suggest to read them if you are not English native, needs something that is not a magazine while travelling (aka when you have no internet). A little tip, I usually buy them on Amazon, you can find used copies for 50cent! (it’s more the delivery, but you can get a book for 3,50 Euro, less than a mag!)

Radio

2 suggestions for your ears, minds and souls.

Reply All is the first podcast production at Gimlet Media, that I spoke about last time about Startup Podcast (by the way, season 2 of Startup is really really nice, really worthy!). At beginning I wasn’t much into this podcast, just because it’s not my fave topic, but I must admit it’s grown on me. The best episode I guess it’s Exit and Return (there is a part 1 and 2).

The second podcast I recommend is a special one: Radio Diaries, short stories about ordinary and extra-ordinary people. It’s an intimate, deep podcast. I suggest to give it a go with the episode #31 Fly Girls, it’s one of my favourites.

Tv series

I am pretty much hooked up with Wayward Pines.  Yes, it’s sci-fi, and the last time I liked sci-fi was 20 years ago with X-Files I guess, but I like how W.P.’s mystery goes along with the plot. It’s about a Secret Service agent who wakes up in a remote mountain village after a car accident while investigating on the disappearance of two other colleagues. The village has a peculiar thing: people can’t leave it. But why? Watch it!

Artist

Time for some introspection. John Monson is ideal for the role. It’s simple abstract art with a splash of colour. And you might know how much I love colours.  Check his portfolio out: http://www.johnmonsonart.com/

artist

Photo

In April I visited for the first part an amazing German island on the Baltic Sea, Ruegen. I will talk about that amazing weekend soon on this blog, I promise!

DSCN6653

See you next time!

Winter 2015 – Favourites

Winter

Hello lovely people.

I’m back to talk about my seasonal favourites, spanning through music, film, radio and much more.

For this 2015 I decided to explore the topic “Playlist” on a different level, not anymore on a monthly basis, but based on the seasons, on each colours, weather and events that happen along the way. This winter has been unusual, cold and grey, but snow lacked, for my disappointment. Spring came with a windy week of clear sky and sun, here in Berlin. Quite a blessing, culminated with the solar eclipse on March 20th, equinox day, what a show.

Well, let’s start with the favourites, let me know what you think.

Enjoy and bring joy with you, always. 

Val

 

Music

In this playlist you can find:

Screen Shot 2015-03-21 at 16.16.25

Flowers

You can tell it’s January in Berlin when you can find the first narcissuses and tulips and more in every supermarket. I love them! such a colourful presence in my flat. I personally like to buy myself a nice posy, to display in my bedroom. It’s a lovely feeling to wake up and see flowers, indeed!

IMAG6763

Film

I watched Song One because of the beautiful presence of singer songwriter Johnny Flynn and a great soundtrack. Despite the music, the movie itself is meh, I must admit, so maybe skip the movie and go listen to the OST.

I also watched Birdman since it won the Oscars, and I can tell that it’s an excellent movie, but I simply can’t explain how Boyhood didn’t bring the statue home. Seriously I can’t wrap my head around it.

I ended up watching Still Alice a Saturday night that I was home alone. I generally liked the idea, and Julianne Moore really studied the pathology before playing the role, but what a weird way to roll the narrative, highlighting things that would not necessarily be highlighted (Husband cheating? Kids’ daily drama?)…Dunno. Not impressed in the end. I have also to say I really dislike the choice of letting a saltless actress like Kristen Stewart such an important character?

Whiplash wowed me. What a great, cruel movie about music and jazz. It reminded me of a past boyfriend practising jazz until his hands bleed. It’s true that that kind of practice makes you a fierce human being. Sometimes a bit of a superior asshole too. And then, well, there’s my homie Miles Teller. I always watch and support him, he’s finally starting to move forward shitty blockbusters and work with his talent for nicer, more meaningful scripts.

Book

The beast is back.

And it’s scary.

And intense.

And simply great.

Radio

I want to suggest you StartUp, from Gimlet Media. At the beginning I thought that the podcast was a spin-off like Serial of TAL (I spoke about my devotion for this podcast and host Ira Glass last year) bur it’s something different. I really liked the story telling and the genuine enthusiasm and tender naivety to the business world, while he is approaching to start his own business.

If you want to give it a go listen here to the first episode and download the rest of the podcast from http://feeds.gimletmedia.com/hearstartup

Tv series

Pretty good stuff during the past months!

The last man on Earth premiered in early March and it’s a nice mix of comedy and drama. Rather enjoyable!

I’m a big fan of The Americans, something that has been growing slowly but steady on me. Season 3 is delightful, very recommended!

Broadchurch, series 2, was something not to miss. The big flaw is to last only few episodes. Can’t wait for season 3.

I am also following Suits and The Good Wife, and of course I watched season 3 of House of Cards.

So much to watch!

Photo

It must be a photo from my recent trip to wonderful Kop.

“The journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.” – Lao Tzu

DSCF1651 copy

October Highlights

Let me start with an explanation, of about where I have been this entire month.

I was here, I was there, I was nowhere. I was so busy that I had actually no topics to share, so I left this space to better times, like right now, the monthly favourites.

This month is a good one, especially for my obsession over a radio podcast, Serial. Find everything HERE

As usual, we begin with a playlist, click on my dog to start!

Screen Shot 2014-10-31 at 18.23.19

Enjoy and bring joy with you, always.

Val

September Highlights

NoOoOoOoO! It’s already the end of September!

Autumn is here, my time to write the blog has gone with Summer, I reckon.

I have been too busy sorting out my life, my apologies for not preparing the monthly favourites. A consolation? Check the past 8 posts all in one page, The Playlist.

Not enough? Ow, you really want me to feel bad, don’t you? Ok, here is the -at least- the playlist I prepared with my fave songs. Enjoy the tracks!

P.S. In few days check back the Playlist page and you’ll find all brand new suggestions for flowers, food, arts, movie, radio podcasts, tv series and more!

July Highlights!

What is the best thing about the end of a month?

The fact that you will get a paycheck? Or that it’s the only day you are sure you have no new bills to pay? That holidays come soon? Wrong. You’re all wrong.

The best part of the end of the month is to get to read this post. 🙂 Cheeky me, I know.

Here for you a new selection over art, photography, flowers, radio, movie and tv-series reviews, plus a fresh yummy recipe, all starting from a new Playlist. Click on the picture or here to start a new journey!

Screen Shot 2014-07-31 at 15.39.57

Full link: The Playlist

Enjoy and bring joy with you, always.

Val

Follow me on Facebook: Valanzo