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Friendsgiving

30 Nov

It goes without saying that I have so much to be thankful for, but living abroad what I am most grateful for are the wonderful friends I have that keep me sane and always happy. We’re more than friends; we’re like a small gang!

I hope everyone had a tasty and memorable Thanksgiving wherever you may live.

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The King (or Queen) of Cakes

11 Jan

You have to love France for its seasonality of fruits, veggies, cheese, wine, and even pastries. Currently, we are in the time of the ‘galette des rois,’ or as most Americans know it down in New Orleans as the King Cake. Here, it’s a light and flaky crust with ‘frangipane’ (almond paste) inside. It comes with a crown and the person who eats the piece that has a little trinket inside (ours had a small plastic clown) is the king (or queen) for the day. There are lines out of the bakeries here to buy them just after the New Year and are usually steadily sold for a few weeks after.

Last night, our little girl ate her first piece of galette and was crowned queen.

Galette de rois 1.10.15

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Holiday Traditions

29 Dec

The holidays have a new meaning when you have a child. They are more magical and become even more important in bringing together family and friends. This Christmas Victoria is 14 months and I think she had a great time not because she got a million presents, but because she got to spend time with her cousins being silly, eating enormous amounts of food and staying up late. The day after Christmas we left to go to the mountains – a tradition that’s now two years old and one that we hope to keep for years to come.

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We hope your holidays were as happy as ours.

Here’s to a very merry 2015!

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What’s your Pinterest?

18 Jul

When I first arrived to Lyon three years ago I was lost in a country where I didn’t speak the language, had no full-time job and had all the time in the world to discover what I loved – cooking and petite crafts. I started to find bloggers around those subjects that I could use for my cooking and crafting inspirations and began bookmarking those interests. Just then, I started hearing about a new social network called Pinterest and it was perfectly matched for collecting and organizing my recipes and potential DIY projects. I started pinning like crazy – it became an obsession, so much so that when my husband is hungry for something in particular he asks me if I have a recipe pinned for it. Well, fast-forward to the present and low-and-behold my little obsession paid off, as I was recently contacted by Pinterest here in France asking me if I wanted to meet other Lyon community members in an evening picnic at a local park. How cool!

Pinterest Picnic Collage

I took a friend of mine along and we indulged in small bites from Michel et Augustin and took home some fun Pinterest gifts. I didn’t technically meet any other “pinners,” as my friend and I were lost in our own conversation (i.e. I’m always terrified to speak French), but I thought it was a really great way for Pinterest to engage its community.

Now, three years since my arrival I’m sort of speaking the language, have a job teaching public relations and social media at a local journalism school (I’m sure I’ll be talking about this picnic in class) and have little time to myself now that I have a daughter, but I would say I’m no longer lost in this beautiful country; and my recipes are ridiculously organized!

Do you have any interests that help you to unwind?

Bon appétit and happy pinning!

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See Music

2 Jun

There have been a few times in my life where I’ve tried to pursue the arts. When I was a little girl I took piano, which was actually keyboard – I was decent (I won first place for a duet with a boy), but didn’t have the patience for it. I took ballet, and tap, and jazz, but I wasn’t good at any of it. I tried painting – I wasn’t brave enough to put anything on the canvas. As I got older, I went to see plays – I could do musicals, but the other ones bored me. I went to an opera – walked out after 20 minutes. Became a member of a museum – they had cocktails, so that lasted awhile. And then this past weekend my husband and I went to the symphony. It wasn’t something I had wanted to do – they were tickets my in-laws gave me for my birthday earlier this year. I mean a concert of my favorite band ok, but watching people sitting playing instruments just didn’t seem like something I needed to see. Boy was I wrong! I just kept saying to myself over and over again – I’m actually seeing music…the notes themselves were coming to life. It was one of the most magical things I think I’ve experienced to date.

I had no idea just how complex a symphony is – I always had something to see whether it was the conductor directing the musicians (he’s actually doing stuff with that stick) or being fascinated by how the pianist played (at one point he plucked one of the strings inside the piano while he played). Sometimes you would hear the slightest sound and realize it was just a tap on a triangle or a small hit on a drum. I kept wondering how the person who composed the piece selected those tiny sounds that actually enhanced the piece. There were times I closed my eyes to see if I could pick the instruments out or just allowed myself to be swept away by the music. It all made me forget how upset I was for leaving my daughter with her grandparents overnight for the first time. It made me realize that there are still things I haven’t tried….

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