this was a good week

This was a lovely week.  Here's why:

•  The last two weekends, I've had two speaking gigs -- and as much as I love doing them, they require a ton of preparation, which can be exhausting, especially when done back-to-back.  So after my TEDxSanAntonio talk (thanks so much to those of you who came, by the way!), I've been able to relax a bit this week, returning to routine (including the haunting of favourite coffeeshops, natch).  It's been so restorative.

•  Speaking of restorative, I've always loved mandalas -- those circular patterns often created as a form of meditation.  I'm particularly taken, however, with these mandalas, created by photographer Gail Haile, and made from her own photographs.  Just gorgeous, aren't they?

•  Renowned portraitist Chuck Close photographed 20 celebrities for Vanity Fair.  That sentence in itself isn't particularly novel, but check this out:  each celebrity were required to come alone or only with one close friend (no entourage), they had to do their own hair and makeup, there was no fancy catered spread -- and they were photographed with a giant Polaroid camera, which meant no Photoshop or computer manipulation of the final images.  Awesome, right?  There's a video about the project here, and some of the portraits and outtakes from the shoots here.  And I now need to rush out and buy this issue of Vanity Fair, clearly.  (Thanks to Nicole for letting me know about this!)

•  It could be that I'm all excited about receiving my new spectacles this week, but I don't think so -- these animated gifs of photographs focused through glasses are just plain awesome.  Yes, they are.

•  This little story about living life on your own terms.  Yes.

•  Words can't define how much I love me some Kid President.  In this 4-1/2 minute video, he shares his advice to a brand-new baby -- advice it would do us all good to remember every once in a while.


And finally, a new playlist for February -- this one is all over the place, exploring all the different types of this crazy little thing we call love.  Click here to enjoy!