Month: April 2011

A Royal Engagement

As everyone in the whole world knows, today was the big royal wedding between Prince William and Kate Middleton!  I don’t normally get into celebrity news or gossip but this wedding was different.  I have been through so much lately that I absorbed every bit of info I could get.  With tornadoes, earthquakes, chaos in the middle east and my own medical freak show, it was nice to have something genuinely happy to divert my mind.  For one day (in fact, many days)  I could think about what dress Kate would wear or the crazy hats  instead of focusing on trainers, shots and medicine. (After all, how often does a normal girl become a princess in real life? So cool!)

To commemorate the big day I decided to throw a little soiree.  I looked at it as a welcome diversion from my problems and a chance to thank my friends for all their love and support- plus, it was a blast to plan!

A delightful after dinner tea- herbal tea, almond chocolate chip scones, cucumber sandwiches. Someday I'd like to get a silver tea service...Someday!

The theme of the night was naturally all things British.  I had a lot of fun finding little British flags and an almond flour scone recipe I can eat. (From Elana’s cookbook of course).  I also made cucumber sandwiches with whole wheat bread and had an assortment of herbal teas.  For some people putting together such a menu and finding the decor would be a lot of hard work and it was, but for me, it is the part I most enjoy.  I love entertaining and I can’t completely explain why.  I just find it extremely satisfying to take a boring space and make it beautiful, full of life.  Its also wonderful to have an idea for a party and see it come to fruition.    Plus, like I said, it was nice to think about something other than my health for a change!

I’m not normally a very crafty person but a couple of weeks ago I got the idea to decorate hats for the party.  The British are known for their over-the-top hats and the wedding was no exception (I learned that sometimes the hats are called fascinators.  Btw, I could do really well on a royal trivia category of Jeopardy this week!).  I thought it would be neat to adorn our own hats with flowers, ribbons etc. (Evidently every one else in Utah had this idea because straw hats were sold out everywhere I went!).  I’m glad I persevered because it was a lot of fun.  It was also neat to see how individual everyone’s hat turned out.  Some of the girls have agreed to go out to dinner wearing our hats.  I think it would be great to see people’s responses!

Don't you think they turned out cute!

Thanks to the girls who came and made the event memorable and thanks to William and Kate for giving me something to smile about!  I hope they are very happy.  From everything I can tell they seem like a real love match- a wonderful couple.  The wedding was beautiful and she looked like the perfect princess. It was a great day and  terrific end to a stressful week!  Now I’m exhausted from all the fun and going to sleep!  Love you all!

Product Recommendation Almond Flour

Hi out there! I decided to try something new for my product recommendations.  I’m really excited about this almond flour from Honeyville Farms.  If you want to order go to the Honeyville Farm website. If anyone is interested in buying it in bulk with me I’d love it.  I have enough to last me a few months but after that I’m confident I will want more!

I just got Elana Amsterdam’s cookbooks and they look fantastic (and are priced under $10 each!). I’m so excited!  I can’t wait to explore them.   Her new one is called Gluten-Free Cupcakes and her old one is the Gluten Free Almond Flour Cookbook.  It would be cool if someone else got these cookbooks and we could dive into them together.  It will take me a while to get through them all by myself (but don’t worry I will persevere through all the yummy baked goods!).  Most of her recipes call for agave which still must be eaten with moderation but at a glycemic index of 38 it is pretty good.

Anyway, I’m just grateful for products and companies that help me to feel good, eat right and still enjoy life!

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Gift From the Sea

Over the weekend I must admit to feeling a little depressed.  It’s hard to explain exactly why.  It may have been the new injections, the surgery date or that I didn’t feel great and was simply exhausted, wrung out in every way- emotionally, mentally, physically, spiritually.  I was perhaps also a little bummed out at having to move my DC trip to September and I’m sure being alone over the Easter holiday didn’t help.  Who knows?  Sometimes I feel down for no reason at all, not very often, but it does happen.

Needing some comfort and inspiration I turned to a little book I had not read in at least 10 years, A Gift from the Sea by Anne Marrow Lindbergh.  It was the perfect book for me to read at that moment and I devoured it!  (It’s not long- 127 pages.  Its more of a collection of essays than a book)  In the book Anne shares her contemplations after a vacation at the ocean.

Looking at a hermit crab leaving his shell Anne says “He ran away, and left me his shell.  It was once a protection to him.  I turn the shell in my hand, gazing into the wide open door from which he made his exit.  Had it become an encumbrance?  Why did he run away? Did he hope to find a better home, a better mode of living?  I too have run away, I realize, I have shed the shell of my life, for these few weeks of vacation.”

What a glorious thing such shedding is!  I feel the same way when I go to Hawaii.  Its sounds cheesy but the mere sound of the waves makes my problems float away and the brightness of the sun makes life feel alive, reborn.

Anne goes on to analyze her life, “I want first of all…to be at peace with myself. I want a singleness of eye, a purity of intention, a central core to my life that will enable me to carry out these obligations and activities as well as I can.  I want, in fact- to borrow the language of the saints- to live ‘in grace’ as much of the time as possible.”

What a grand goal!  Of course, life becomes very complicated and busy.  Anne says “the life I have chosen as a wife and mother entrains a whole caravan of complications…This is not the life of simplicity but the life of multiplicity that the wise men warn us of.  It leads not to unification but to fragmentation.  It does not bring grace; it destroys the soul.  And this is not only true of my life,  I am forced to conclude; it is the life of millions of women in America.”

What is Anne’s solution to such a challenging problem? Well she compares each phase in life to different types of shells found at the beach:

1.  The Channeled Whelk- the abandoned home of a hermit crab.  “Blurred with moss, knobby with barnacles, its shape is hardly recognizable anymore.  Surely, it had shape once.  It has a shape still in my mind.  What is the shape of my life? The shape of my life today starts with a family…I have also a craft, writing, and therefore work I want to pursue.  The shape of my life is determined by many other things: my background and childhood, my mind and its education, my conscience and its pressures, my heart and its desires.”

She goes on to talk about the difficulties of balancing all these shapes.  “Simplification of outward life is not enough.  It is merely the outside.  But I am starting with the outside.  I am looking at the outside of a shell, the outside of my life- the shell.  The complete answer is not to be found on the outside, in an outward mode of living.  This is only a technique, a road to grace. The final answer, I know, is always inside.  But the outside can give a clue, can help us find the answer.”

2. Moon Shell- “This is a snail-shell, round, full and glossy as a horse-chestnut.  Comfortable and compact…”  With the moon shell Anne talks about the importance of solitude and being comfortable in one’s skin.  “No man is an island, said John Donne.  I feel we are all islands- in a common sea. We are all, in the last analysis, alone.  And this basic state of solitude is not something we have any choice about.  We are solitary.  We may delude ourselves and act as though this were not so.  That is all.”

Anne goes on to talk about the crowding in on solitude from modern life.  “Women, who used to complain of loneliness, need never be alone anymore.  We can do our housework with soap-opera heroes at our side.  Even day dreaming was more creative than this; it demanded something of oneself and it fed the inner life. Now, instead of planting our solitude with our own dream blossoms we choke the space with continuous music, chatter and companionship to which we do not even listen.  It is simply there to fill a vacuum…We must learn to be alone. ”

3. Double Sunrise- This shell was a gift from a friend. “Each side, like the wing of a butterfly, is marked with the same pattern; translucent white except for three rosy rays that fan out from the golden hinge binding the two together.  I hold two sunrises between my thumb and finger.”  Anne goes on to talk about the purity of the gift and what she calls the ‘pure relationship’.

“Every relationship seems simple at its start.  The simplicity of love, or friendliness, the mutuality of first sympathy seems, at its initial appearance- even if merely in exciting conversation across a dinner table- to be a self-enclosed world.  Two people listening to each other, two shells meeting each other, making one world between them.  There are no others in the perfect unity of that instant…”

The she goes on to say ‘how swiftly, how inevitably the perfect unity is invaded; the relationship changes’.   However, if we look we can find glimpses of the ‘pure relationship’ all around us.  Anne also recommends for couples temporary returns ‘to the pure relationship.’  She says our children need these glimpses also “Does each child not secretly long for the pure relationship he once had with the mother when he was ‘the baby’? And if we were able to put into practice this belief and spend more time with each child alone- would he not only gain in security and strength but also learn an important first lesson in his adult relationship?”

4. The Oyster Shell- Naturally we demand relationships that are more than the passions of a the purest moments.  This brings Anne to the oyster shell. “Each is fitted and formed by its own life and struggle to survive…Sprawling and uneven it has the irregularity of something rowing.  It looks rather like the house of a big family, pushing out one addition after another to hold its teeming life…It is untidy, spread out in all directions, heavily encrusted with accumulations and in its living state- this one is empty and cast up by the sea- firmly imbedded on its rock”

The oyster shell symbolizes the middle years of marriage (or I related it to the middle years of life). It is here that ‘many bonds, many strands, of different textures and strength, form making up a web that is taut and firm.  The web is fashioned of love.  Yes, but many kinds of love: romantic first, then a slow-growing devotion, and playing through these a constantly rippling companionship”.

As a single girl I must say- that is the dream.  ‘a constantly rippling companionship’.  I love it!

5. Argonata-  “These are in the beach-world certain rare creatures, who are not fastened to their shell at all.  It is actually a cradle for the young, held in the arms of the mother argonaut who floats within to the surface, where the eggs hatch and the young swim away.  Then the mother argonaut leaves her shell and starts another life.”

With this shell Anne contemplates on the second half of life when children have left the shell.  Anne says ‘ I believe after the oyster bed, an opportunity for the best relationship of all: not a limited, mutually exclusive one, like the sunrise shell; and not a functional, dependent one, as in the oyster bed; but the meeting of two whole fully developed persons.”

You may find it odd that I would be so moved by more talk of marriage but with so many evils fighting relationships- pornography, addiction, infidelity, workaholism- it is comforting to read of the potential for complete relationships.  Sometimes I am prone to be a bit cynical about love but in reading Anne’s words I thought of the relationships I do have and how they have grown.  My relationship with my parents, siblings, friends and myself have all changed and are changing each day.  How comforting to know that even more potential love is possible as relationships grow.

Anne says “The joy of such a pattern is not only the joy of creation or the joy of participation, it is also the joy of living in the moment.” She then asks “What makes us hesitate and stumble?  It is fear, I think, that makes one cling nostalgically to the last moments or clutch greedily toward the next.  Fear destroys ‘the winged life.’ But how to exorcise it?  It can only be exorcised by its opposite, love.  When the heart is flooded with love there is no room for fear, for doubt, for hesitation.”

I know this was a super long post but I felt so inspired by Gift from the Sea and  I wanted to share it with those I love.  Like Anne when I think of the ocean I am filled with light and peace. I think this is because the ‘sea recedes and returns eternally’.  I believe I am a part of creating eternal relationships, whether it be with a family member or a friend- or someday something more.  What we do now has more significance then we realize and Anne’s words helped me remember all of my current challenges are part of my great collection of shells, which eventually will be vibrant, beautiful and eternal.

I hope I have done the book justice.  It moved me and felt like a big hug from my Heavenly Father.  I loved it.  Have any of you read it?  What did you think?

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Memories

To flee from memory
Had we the Wings
Many would fly
Inured to slower things
Birds with surprise
Would scan the cowering Van
Of men escaping
From the mind of man

Emily Dickinson

Memory is a strange thing and there are times I wish I could flee from mine.  Isn’t it odd how most of us  remember the painful moments with stunning clarity while the joyous times go by in a blur? Why is that?

In the excellent movie After Life (1998 Japanese film) the recently departed are required to choose one memory to be recreated and filmed for them to take on to the next stage.  After viewing the films the participant vanishes to an unknown fate.  The movie does a great job presenting different types of people who struggle to come up with a memory.  What is most important? What is the happiest memory in life? Some chose Disneyland or their weddings but others refuse to choose and feel their life is not worthwhile- not one memory.  If you have not seen After Life rent it on Netflix.  I promise you will get used to the subtitles.  It is well worth the effort.

The great Thornton Wilder play, Our Town, has a similar plot.  The lead character Emily must pick a memory to go back and view before moving on.  She tries to pick an inoxuious day- her 12th birthday but in reliving it she understands that no moment in life is without meaning and value.  In fact, it is the routine and ordinary that are often the most important.  As I mentioned in a previous post there is a filming of a Broadway version of Our Town staring Paul Newman that is worth checking out.

I bring this topic up only because lately I have found myself drifting to memories, some of them painful.  As much as I’d like to focus on the family vacations, hugs goodnight and nearly constant reading aloud, some of the memories that are the most vivid are the taunts, teases and frustrations.

There are two memories in particular that I can’t seem to erase from my mind (not that I want to).  The first one happened in the 5th grade (so around 10?).  As the chubbiest girl in school, I was repeatedly teased and called a ‘fat dog’ by my classmates.  One  day I was drinking from an outdoor water fountain and was trying to ignore the taunts.  Eventually one kid decided it would be funny to push me into the water and shove my dress above my head so my underwear showed to the world.  I remember this moment so well I could tell you the dress I was wearing.  It was nautical with little flags.  I’m a 30 year old woman and yet I still remember with pain the taunts of stupid 10-year-old punk kids.  Why?

The other memory which stands out I am almost hesitant to bring up.  My parents did such a great job with me that this was a rare misstep.   Around the same time of the teasing my parents sat me down for a talk.  I remember it as if it was yesterday.  We were on our deck in Salt Lake and they told me I needed to go on a diet and that ‘I weighed as much as some grown men’.  Then they gave me a tuna fish sandwich on pumpernickel bread with baby carrots.  It was the first time in my life  I was told I was fat by someone I loved and I think a bubble of childhood was burst.  I remember feeling confused and puzzled at how I had let this problem occur and what I was to do about it?  In the 20 years since, there has always been a part of me which has accepted my weight as my fault- as my great flaw, the one thing I couldn’t figure out or conquer.  How could a little girl be expected to overcome such a problem?

Of course, now I know that I likely suffered from insulin resistance problems back then.  In fact, with the early puberty, weight gain,  and fatigue, the diagnosis is obvious.  However, I did not know this information then- nor did my parents.  To their credit they did take me out of school almost immediately after they found out about the teasing and put me in Reid School– a decision which changed the way I learned and boosted my self-confidence at a critical junction (and made me a passionate supporter of alternative schooling for my entire life)

In addition, my parents have been unfailingly supportive of me, no matter my size.  The funny thing is I can only think of two other time’s growing up when they mentioned diets or losing weight again.  No parent is perfect and no child is ideal.  They did not know I had an insulin resistance problem and considering it took me the last 14 months to figure it out I do not hold it against them. I wish we had decided to get healthy as a family, instead of singling me out, but I know they did the best they could.  I always knew they loved me.  Like the Dickinson poem says I wish I could flee away from the memory.  I wish I didn’t have it and certainly that it wouldn’t be so vivid.

Perhaps, however, I would not be where I am today without such memories?  Who is to say?  I don’t know, but I think part of this life-changing process is coming to terms with how I arrived here- the good times and the bad.

Good News

This is just a quick update but I wanted to let all of you know the good news I got today at the endocrinologist.  (yes, you read right.  I for once got good news at the doctors!).  Its complicated but basically he said I have a unique version of diabetes.  Some might say it is pre-diabetic but it is just enough symptoms to classify as diabetes for the insurance.

In fact, my blood sugar averages are normal.  It’s the highs and lows that show concern.  The doctor said with the new medicine I should be able to lose more weight (about 4 lbs a month is what I should expect for several months) and that my sugars should stabilize.  It is not an energy creating drug per say but hopefully that will be a ripple effect.

The doctor said if I continue to be careful with my low glycemic diet, take my meds and keep up the exercise I may not need the injections for long.  Depending on how I respond I could rid myself of the diabetic symptoms entirely- even eventually working in an occasional carb/treat into the mix.

I know the next few months will be difficult- as there is no easy road to health (especially for me!).  However, I feel encouraged and hopeful for an energetic, healthy future.  The doctor told me that a huge majority of diabetes patients don’t take care of their condition and naturally it gets worse and worse, causing greater health problems.  I will not be this type of diabetic.  I’ve sacrificed too much, come too far.  He actually said with my blood sugar averages my chances of cancer, heart disease aren’t much more elevated than any other person.

What we are basically doing is nipping the problem in the bud before it becomes such a dramatic health risk.  It is conquering it while it is an early stage and for this I feel proud.  Proud that I didn’t give up and kept pushing for more tests and treatments.  Without my copious notes and nearly constant prodding I would not have discovered my diabetes until much later in life when it would have been much harder to make the necessary changes.  Out of all the blood work they did nothing showed diabetic until I started keeping a careful log of my symptoms, food intake and medicinal responses.  I even did an experiment where I ate candy and then took my blood sugar.  Shockingly it went up to 309.  It was this evidence almost exclusively that convinced my doctor of my condition or at least my propensity towards it.  I’m proud I stuck to my guns and didn’t accept the easy answers he wanted to give me.

Even today I had to remind the doctor  that despite normal readings I did not feel normal.  He seemed a little skeptical but in the end said I was probably going through a type of withdrawal of higher blood sugar numbers. Eventually my body should adjust to having lower numbers and combined with the weight loss I should feel better than ever!

Like I said the road ahead will not be easy but I feel confident I am up for the challenge!  I also have a gut feeling that this is the big answer I’ve been praying  for.  I think the medicine will work.  I will lose the weight, get my sugars normalized, feel energized and live the active life I have been seeking the last 14 months (my whole life really!).  I’m looking forward to the future in a way I haven’t done for some time.  I’m full of hope and gratitude.

To finally getting the new me and feeling GREAT!

Brownies

seriously brownies that are actually good for you- omega 3s and protein from the almond butter, flour and sugar free! Wow! May be the best day of my life.

Yes you read right.  Brownies.  Have I flown off the diabetes band wagon?  No sir!

The last two days I have not felt well and been a bit depressed.  Actually I don’t know if depressed is the right word- exhausted is more accurate.  Exhausted in every sense of the word.  I feel wrung out emotionally, spiritually and physically.

Today for some reason I feel a lot better.  I don’t know if it is seeing my sister or having voice lessons or what but I just feel a little more energy than the last 2 days.

I am particularly happy about a new recipe I tried for BROWNIES!!!  You won’t believe this recipe actually works.  It has NO FLOUR and NO SUGAR!!  How can that be?  I was skeptical but it is delicious.  The chips have a tiny bit of sugar but you can use chips with cane juice, agave or other sweeteners.

Chocolate Chip Brownies
1 (16) ounce jar salted almond butter, smooth roasted
2 eggs
1 ¼ cups agave nectar
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
½ cup cacao powder
½ teaspoon celtic sea salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup dark chocolate chips 73% cacao

  1. In a large bowl, blend almond butter until smooth with a hand blender
  2. Blend in eggs, then blend in agave and vanilla
  3. Blend in cacao, salt and baking soda, then fold in chocolate chips
  4. Grease a 9 x 13 pyrex baking dish
  5. Pour batter into dish
  6. Bake at 325° for 35-40 minutes

I wish I could take credit for this recipe.  It is from an amazing blog called Elena’s Pantry written by Elena Amsterdam.  Ostensibly she is a gluten free author but her recipes also are low glycemic and use natural sweeteners.  She’s even introduced me to new sweeteners/flours such as yacon powder and spelt flour.

These brownies are AMAZING!!!!!

I feel I have been blessed to not care much about food but after two bad days I must admit these brownies made me happy and smile. One thing about being a medical freak show is it makes you appreciate the little things. 🙂

Try out these brownies and other recipes from Elena’s Pantry and let me know what you think.  I have been blown away.  (Unfortunately these are not cheap but you can’t have everything!)

Movies That Work

With the barrage of  health problems thrust at my door in recent weeks it can be no surprise that my blog has become a strange mixture of a detailed health report and a personal medical venting forum.  I suppose the appropriateness of such posts depends on the definition and purpose of a blog.  If it is a meant to be an opportunity for the writer to portray his or her life to the world then my blog has been a true blog in nearly every sense of the word. If it is supposed to be the syrupy weekly equivalent of a holiday newsletter then I have failed!

I am actually quite grateful for the literary art-form and the freedom it gives me to express my thoughts in a way vocal conversation can not. In talking with a loved one I get an immediate sense of satisfaction and pleasure; whereas, writing my struggles and joys is a different egg all together.  It forces me to mull over words and analyze how my experiences are really impacting me- both in the short and long term.

In fact, I sometimes feel sorry for those that read my blog right after publication (not that I discourage it!) because it is only a rough draft at that point with many revisions and editing sessions to follow.  Most blogs I review at least four or five times before I am minimally satisfied with the way they convey my feelings.

Despite such an editing pen I hope you enjoy my ramblings and have found some use for them in your busy lives.  I know it has certainly benefited me, so thank you for coming and reading.

Enough said on that… I thought it might be fun to lighten the mood a bit and when I think of lightening the mood I almost always come to one of four topics- books, movies, television, or music.  (One can not be surprised as I have done many posts on each.)

Today I was thinking about movies.  In particular,  one of my favorite topics in film- movies about work.  I am not a film historian but it seems to me that work and work-related issues have often been a theme of movies.   This is probably for the simple reason that everyone has to work to survive- it’s universal.  Work is also the only activity, with the exception of family-life, that effects every human being, every day throughout the entirety of our lives- no matter their culture, language or religion, work is an essential part of life.

With such a mass appeal, work can be used as a simple backdrop or a critical element in the plot.  It is also broad enough to be applicable to every genre including drama, comedy, suspense and romance.  However, no matter the category, these movies tend to focus on two overarching questions:

1. What is my purpose for existence or to what aim am I working for?  and

2. How much does money matter to me,  and why?

1. I don’t care if you are a celebrity, professional athlete or just an ordinary person, work is all about routines.  To some extent life for everyone gets drummed down to bare essential behaviors and those who exhibit those behaviors well, are considered a success.  Even a ‘creative’ person must go through certain processes to achieve their ultimate product.  The best we can hope for is to find something that makes us moderately satisfied and we can perform well enough at to gain a living.  This may sound pessimistic but I believe the idea of the soul fulfilling job is mostly an illusion of youth.

In Its a Wonderful Life Jimmy Stewart learns the value of his work, especially when compared to the evil Mr. Potter

2. Scripture teaches us the ‘love of money is the root of all evil’ (1 Timothy 6:10).  Think about it- if 8 hours of our life are devoted to sleep (on a good day!) and at least 8 to work, that leaves only 8 to everything else.  If we are not careful the income producing section of our day can be the only part of value, of meaning, because it is the only part with obvious immediate profit.  With such income providing sustenance and happiness, its increase can become an obsession, our soul life’s quest.

how many have wanted to do this to their office copier? From Office Space

The obvious example of such greed is in my beloved Christmas Carol.  In each version and the original text, we are vividly taught that Scrooge has squandered his life in pursuit of wealth, power, and the safety of work.  He feared poverty too much and shut the world and Christ (in the form of Christmas) out. His redemption teaches all of us that life is about serving others and living a full life (the remaining 8 hours of the day!).

Scrooge- the ultimate capitalist gone wrong!

Some of my other favorite movies on this topic are:  ( I started to describe each of these but then the post became a novel.  Just trust me they are great!):

The Classics- Its a Wonderful Life (yes its not just a holiday movie), The Holiday, Talk of the Town, His Girl Friday, Shop Around the Corner, Mr. Deeds Goes to Town, Notorious, On the Waterfront, Singing in the Rain, Dr. Strangelove, the Apartment, Modern Times, Citizen Kane, and more.

In the Apartment Jack Lemmon learns what he will sacrifice to not be one of the office masses
Love and work get muddled in the hilarious classic His Girl Friday

Comedies- Groundhog Day, City Slickers, Office Space (a lot of profanity so watch with a warning.  I have edited if anyone wants it),  The Kid, You’ve Got Mail, Dan in Real Life, Stranger than Fiction, the Devil Wears Prada, the Incredibles (yes, the incredibles…think about it super hero’s wondering if their life-work is of value?), Up, Fever Pitch, What About Bob?, Defending Your Life, Fun with Dick and Jane (its better then it looks.  Try it out!), Sabrina, Mother, About a Boy, While You Were Sleeping, Big, Mary Poppins (think about what the stiff banker Dad learns?) and more.

Some people have their careers forced on them. In the Kings Speech King George must learn to tackle his enormous job as King of England.

Dramas- Last Chance Harvey, Babette’s Feast, Breach, Enron: the Smartest Guys in the Room, Remains of the Day, In Good Company, the Family Man, Breakfast at Tiffany’s, Howards End, half of Julie and Julia, the Queen, Amadeus, All About Eve, Afterlife, Shall We Dance (Japanese version), Death of a Salesman, The Chorus, Up in the Air (although it has some mature content), the Kings Speech, the Music Man, Roman Holiday, Mr. Holland’s Opus, the Social Network (I will mention it even though I thought it was a bit over-rated), Dead Poet’s Society, the Quiet Man, and more.

Will Farrell screams out at his humdrum work and the voice in his head in the great Stranger than Fiction

While not really a movie Thorton Wilder’s great play Our Town cannot be removed from the list.  There is an excellent filmed Broadway version with Paul Newman which is available on Netflix.  I also love the filmed production of Stephen Sondheim’s Company- check out the stream of the amazing 2006 Broadway cast on Netflix.   Its incredible on so many levels (on a side note- how did Raul Esparza not win a tony for this performance? For shame!)

I’m not saying each of these movies is equally good, just that they speak to me about work.  I also know there are many good ones I am leaving out.  Please contribute some of your favorites.