As the dark sky descends sooner each day, I've enjoyed too many latkes, lit many candles with family and friends and have crawled, snuggled, and slipped inside many people's stories through books and films. (My favorites below.)
We wanted to share with you news that we are hiring:)* Most of you know we have a film studio (The Moxie Institute) and its sister organization, our nonprofit Let It Ripple: Mobile Films for Global Change, that hosts Character Day. We just received a beautiful grant for Character Day (full details in January) that allows us to expand our team. We are looking to hire a full-time Character Day Outreach Producer/Director, someone spectacular and resourceful with experience in education & large scale events. If you would like to donate for us to continue our efforts with Character Day you can do so here.
Below are fantastic things to experience, watch, read, listen to, and check out this winter, as well as some ideas for gifts and donations this holiday.
*All Details Below Table of Contents*
EVENTS TO EXPERIENCEHAMILTON Musical - Richard Rodgers Theatre NY | now - Sept 3, 2016
Cooper Hewitt Pixar Show - Cooper Hewitt Museum NY | Oct 8, 2015 - Aug 7, 2016
Sell/Buy/Date Performed by Sarah Jones - NY | Jan 6 - 16
BOOKS TO READ
My Life on the Road by Gloria Steinem
The Best Advice in Six Words Edited by Larry Smith
Fragrant: The Secret Life of Scent by Mandy Aftel
Hunger Makes Me a Modern Girl by Carrie Brownstein
FILMS/SHOWS TO WATCH
The Honourable Woman with Maggie Gyllenhaal on Netflix
Makers: Once And For All on AOL & Amazon
THINGS TO CHECKOUT (PODCASTS & NEWSLETTERS & APPS)
The Jewish Skinny - a Weekly E-Newsletter
Point of No Return Video Created by Fyuse App.
Book reviews for Nature Magazine by Ken Goldberg
THINGS TO DONATE/BUY FOR THE HOLIDAYSHoliday film gifts from our studio
Classic capes from J'Amy Tarr
Master & Dynamic headphones
Galanter & Jones - heated outdoor furniture
Bescentered - scents
Let It Ripple 501c3 efforts for Character Day
EVENTS TO EXPERIENCE
HAMILTON Musical - Richard Rodgers Theatre
now - Sept 3, 2016 | NY
This show is a brilliant, inspiring mashup of the founding of our country. Loved it. Also finally saw Matilda w/Ken and the girls, fantastic as well. -t
"Lin-Manuel Miranda takes the stage as the unlikely founding father determined to make his mark on the new nation as hungry and ambitious as he is. From bastard orphan to Washington's right hand man, rebel to war hero, a loving husband caught in the country's first sex scandal, to the Treasury head who made an untrusting world believe in the American economy."
find out more
"A capsule examination of the collaborative design process behind Pixar Animation Studios. On view in the Process Lab, the installation features original artwork–including rarely seen hand-drawn sketches, paintings, and sculptures from over 25 years of Pixar filmmaking–and creative exercises inspired by the Pixar design process."find out more
Sell/Buy/Date Performed by Sarah Jones
Jan 6 - 16 | NY
Sarah Jones is amazing performer, chameleon who can illuminate so many perspectives within society. Cannot wait to see this new show. -t
“In an exclusive performance in our Forum, Sarah Jones will present a workshop reading of her new one-woman show, Sell/Buy/Date which tackles issues of human trafficking and the sex trade..."
by Leonard Shlain
Dad's book just came out in paperback. Highly recommend. Completely biased...and I promise you, it's worth it. -t
“Best-selling author Leonard Shlain explores the life, art, and mind of Leonardo da Vinci, seeking to explain his singularity by looking at his achievements in art, science, psychology, and military strategy and then employing state of the art left-right brain scientific research to explain his universal genius. ”
My Life on the Road
by Gloria Steinem
Gloria continues to be our wise beacon in a world that needs her insights. -t“When people ask me why I still have hope and energy after all these years, I always say: Because I travel. Taking to the road—by which I mean letting the road take you—changed who I thought I was.”
by Elizabeth Gilbert
find out more
All writing about the creative process intrigues me...this one had an interesting take on how ideas find you... -t
"Readers of all ages and walks of life have drawn inspiration and empowerment from Elizabeth Gilbert’s books for years. Now this beloved author digs deep into her own generative process to share her wisdom and unique perspective about creativity."
The Best Advice in Six Words
Edited by Larry Smith
Here's my 6-words included in the book "Jump from cliffs. Wear helmet, lipstick." Lots more in there. Highly recommend. Larry Smith has taken this creative constraint of 6 words and grown a wonderful collection of books. -t
“The creator of the bestselling, short-form Six-Word Memoir series, Larry Smith, is back again with THE BEST ADVICE IN SIX WORDS, a poignant collection of universal wisdom, life lessons, and caution thrown to the wind. ”
Fragrant: The Secret Life of Scent
by Mandy Aftel
I lived next store to Mandy as a college student at UCBerkeley. I will never forget having tea at her home with all her potions lining the walls. She has since become one of the leaders in creating unusual concoctions and it was great reading her deep knowledge on the subject of fragrance. -t
“Mandy Aftel is widely acclaimed as a trailblazer in natural perfumery. Over two decades of sourcing the finest aromatic ingredients from all over the world and creating artisanal fragrances, she has been an evangelist for the transformative power of scent."
On My Own Two Feet
by Amy Purdy
I recently met Amy, then read her story...deeply inspiring. -t“Amy Purdy, who inspired a nation on Dancing with the Stars and has been called a hero by Oprah Winfrey, reveals the intimate details of her triumphant comeback from the brink of death to making history as a Paralympic snowboarder.”
by Carrie Brownstein
Edgy, raw, very funny memoir..and yes, I have been on a memoir run. -t
"Before Carrie Brownstein became a music icon, she was a young girl growing up in the Pacific Northwest just as it was becoming the setting for one the most important movements in rock history. Seeking a sense of home and identity, she would discover both while moving from spectator to creator in experiencing the power and mystery of a live performance."
FILMS/SHOWS TO WATCH
Directed by Peter Landesman
My brother-in-law Albert Brooks is fantastic in this new film about the important subject of head trauma and sports. -tfind out more
"Will Smith stars in Concussion, a dramatic thriller based on the incredible true David vs. Goliath story of American immigrant Dr. Bennet Omalu, the brilliant forensic neuropathologist who made the first discovery of CTE, a football-related brain trauma, in a pro player and fought for the truth to be known."
The Honourable Woman
with Maggie Gyllenhaal
I know this film came out a while back but Ken and I only watched it this past month. It is FANTASTIC. The acting, the writing and suspense in this 8 part series by the BBC blew us away. It's on Netflix and brilliant. -t“One woman struggles to right her father's wrongs in a world of conspiracy and espionage.”
Amazon Original Series
Friend and Jewess Jill Soloway comes back with a second season of this groundbreaking show on Amazon.
Cannot wait to watch. -t
“Maura embraces her new journey, but nothing about life as a woman is easy -- making friends, finding a new community, and above all, coming out to her children.”
Makers: Once And For All
Seeing the history of Beijing Women's Conference in such detail was a gift to women everywhere.
Highly recommend watching this important part of our history. -t
"The Fourth World Conference for Women, Beijing 1995 was a seminal moment in the history of the women's rights movement. Learn why by watching #OnceAndForAll."
Directed by Dana Nachman
If you want an great feel good movie to watch with the family, this is it. We were all crying and laughing and cheering. It's a true story that takes place in my hometown of SF. Made me love this town all over again. -t"One child. One wish. Millions touched. Who would have thought a 5-year-old boy who fought leukemia would transform a city and a nation for a day? No one. Not his family. Not his friends. Not the thousands of volunteers who came from near and far to help make his wish come true. But it did."
What Happened, Miss Simone?
Directed by Liz Garbus
Ken and I named our daughter Odessa Simone after our love of Nina Simone's music.
Liz Garbus does a great job exploring her life and work in this doc. -t
"Using never-before-heard recordings, rare archival footage and her best-known songs, this is the story of legendary singer and activist Nina Simone."
Directed by Lesley Chilcott
Coding + Girls. Great and inspiring to watch with our girls. -t“Join high school-aged girls from around the world as they try to better their community through technology and collaboration in this thrilling, heartfelt documentary.”
by Yann Arthus-Bertrand
This haunting and powerful film about the human condition is now online.
Turn up the volume, try to watch on as big of a screen as possible and dive in. -t"Filmmaker and artist Yann Arthus-Bertrand spent 3 years collecting real-life stories from more than 2,000 women and men in 60 countries. Working with a dedicated team of translators, journalists and cameramen, he captures deeply personal and emotional accounts of topics that unite us all; struggles with poverty, war, homophobia, and the future of our planet mixed with moments of love and happiness."
13 years ago I made this film about the importance of reproductive rights in America with Maya Draisin, Xandra Castleton and Jennifer Steinman. I wish the subject wasn't so relevant...but it is. You can watch our 13 minute film below. -tfind out more
THINGS TO CHECK OUT (PODCASTS & NEWSLETTERS & APPS)
Podcast with Krista Tippett
This is one of my favorite podcasts. Krista Tippett is so wise, generous and insightful. I always feel like my soul has evolved after spending time listening to her and her guests in expanding conversations. -t
“On Being opens up the animating questions at the center of human life: What does it mean to be human, and how do we want to live? We explore these questions in their richness and complexity in 21st-century lives and endeavors.”
"Products, places, and experiences we know and love. From the founders of Splendora, original gangstas recommending the best shit on the web since 1999."
Newsletter by Lena Dunham & Jenni Konner
We are in a golden era of newsletters. Love this new one too! -t
"Sign up to get Lenny in your inbox twice a week. Feminism, style, health, politics, friendship, and everything else from Lena Dunham and Jenni Konner."
find out more
The Jewish Skinny
"THE JEWISH SKINNY is a weekly e-newsletter that explores ancient and trending Jew(ish) issues, including History, Books, Holidays, Hebrew, Torah, Pop Culture, Influencers, and DIYs..."
Point of No Return
Created by Fyuse
"The Fyuse team is full of Sci-Fi nerds. So, when it came to creating a video for Fyuse 3.0, we decided to do something different. In "Point of No Return" we've imagined a future with redefined technological limitations."
Loved this book review Ken did for Nature about 3 new books on Artificial Intelligence. -t“Ken Goldberg reviews three books that probe the nexus of people and robots. Machines of Loving Grace: The Quest for Common Ground Between Humans and Robots by John Markoff, Rise of the Robots: Technology and the Threat of a Jobless Future by Martin Ford, Our Robots, Ourselves: Robotics and the Myths of Autonomy by David A. Mindell."
Check out this project Ken is leading with CITRIS Connected Communities Initiative at UC Berkeley in collaboration with the Office of the Lt. Governor of California, to help people become prepared for an earthquake. -t
"Imagine that a major earthquake has just occurred...Take 2 minutes to see how prepared you are, and join the 1099 others who have visited so far in an online discussion about preparedness."
find out more
THINGS TO DONATE/BUY FOR THE HOLIDAYS
We are offering some of our film discussion kits with a 20% discount for the holidays using code HOLIDAYS2015 through Jan 4th. Order by 4PM PST Thursday, December 17th, to get your gifts in time for the holidays. We look at our films as the appetizer and the discussion you have afterwards the main course. For your meal, we provide discussion cards, books, educator guides, the DVD, educator's packages and more. The discussion kits include ones for our Feature Documentary Connected and The Tribe: An Unauthorized, Unorthodox History of the Barbie Doll and The Jewish People. -t
from J'Amy Tarr
"The Cape is an elegant outerwear option. Made from soft brushed wool, it features a high collar with lambskin details and a silver metal buckle with a magnetic silver snap closure."
Master & Dynamic Headphones
Galanter & Jones
Heated Outdoor Furniture
"Galanter & Jones is a design + fabrication studio run by brother/sister duo Aaron and Miranda Jones. Founded in 2012, we debuted with a line of heated outdoor seating, the first of its kind. Smooth and a warm like a rock set out in the sun, our pieces are comfortable, durable and beautiful."
find out more
"Essential oil spritzes to enlighten & encourage; spritz, shift, share!"
find out more
We would love your support to expand our efforts for Character Day in the new year. -t
"We are committed to keeping Character Day and all of the films and materials free for all who participate. We have received initial funding for the project, and are still seeking further support at all levels. All donations are tax-deductible (Let it Ripple is 501c3)."find out more
Very happy to give to Hope House, an amazing safe & inspiring house for young girls in India that was created after the brilliant documentary "Born into Brothels" a film by Ross Kauffman, ex. produced by Geralyn White Dreyfous & Pamela Tanner Boll - info on how to give if this moves you at the link below. -tfind out more
"Girls born into Calcutta’s red-light district are at extreme risk for being forced into prostitution. The Hope House (currently under construction) is a safe residence where families from the neighborhood can volunteer to have their daughters raised in a productive and fun environment. Residents grow up away from the dangers of their home neighborhood and mature into healthy women, capable of supporting themselves."