Thanksgiving in Paris

28 November 2011

Thanksgiving in Paris happened twice and was full of: Beautifully dressed tables. Chicken. Southern biscuits. Feline entertainment and cuteness. Laughs. Friends. Champagne.My pumpkin bread.A raspberry tarte.Franco-American merriment.Frosnac wine from 1978.Turkey.Comté de Noël.Lola’s Cookies snickerdoodles + pieHappy bellies. Thanksgiving as an expat doesn’t have to feel any less warm and festive than it would back home. I feel fortunate to have been surrounded by people who were also seeking a taste of familiarity in the form of good company, obscene amounts of delicious food and welcomed lethargy. Lucky for us, we were able to share it with a handful of Frenchies who were after, more or less, the same thing.…

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Family away from family

27 June 2010

{photo credit: Lovely Clusters} My last four birthdays may have been spent away from my family but after the surprise birthday party that was thrown for me last night, I’m reminded that family can also come in the form of close friends. Since I know they both read this blog, at least occasionally, I want to express my gratitude to Amber and Cédric who planned a fabulous surprise with 20 or so lovely people. It should be said that it’s a feat in itself to have fit so many people in our 37m² apartment in the first place! I’m extremely grateful to be able to call Amber, someone so genuinely selfless and thoughtful, my friend. She is always there for me and repeatedly goes beyond the call of friendship duty. I both respect and value her as a friend and admire her strength. As for Mr. Cheeseland, I may chide him at times for not thinking outside of the box but he proved that he was creative, resourceful, and out to make me happy. Mission accomplished! I was also thrilled to see my dear friend Chloe who is due to give birth any day now and managed to climb the […]…

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Saturday Stroll: Grisaille de Mai

10 May 2010

It goes without saying that anyone living in Paris is inured to cold and gray skies. When the ever-elusive sun decides to come out, everyone sprints to the nearest terrace, sheds their layers, and leaves their sunglasses at home to feel the warm rays on their face. We’re heading into the second week of May and the temperature has been lingering between 13-15°C (55-59°F) for the last week and a half. I’ve brought out the winter coat from seasonal retirement and while it pains me to wear it so close to summer, I’m optimistic.  I’ve been dealing with a bad back, what an osteopath thinks might be a weak disc and has been causing quite a lot of discomfort. Still, it sometimes feels better when I stay mobile so I took a little stroll on Saturday before the weather turned. I took a look around the Marché des Enfants Rouges, thought about buying some Italian cheese, and headed through the little park across from rue de bretagne/rue du temple. Back in my neighborhood, I met a friend for coffee and ran into another. Running into friends in Paris makes me feel like I really am home.  Hope everyone had a […]…

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When the Past Attacks

23 January 2010

The past comes back to haunt you, is that how the expression goes? This week I received an anonymous facebook email inferring that I needed to be honest with my husband. Disturbed, I called him to see if he recognized the name of the source. Of course he didn’t, and I reported the person to facebook making it impossible for them to write again. Immediately, this reminded me of high school when we’d drop anonymous notes into the locker of our enemy. That evening I went to yoga, got myself all zen and came home to find out that this shit-starter had contacted my husband as well. Except that his email was long, detailed, and accusatory. I was the subject. The person started off by explaining how and where he/she met me and who introduced my husband and me back in 2006. These are details that only about 3 people would know. They proceeded to accuse me of being unfaithful to him at various periods of our relationship, even when I would go back to the States to visit and went so far as to claim that I even considered calling off our wedding. Part of me wanted to laugh […]…

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A Small World with Big Ideas (Guest post)

12 January 2010

This post is part of the Guest Blog Grand Tour over at Life Without Pants – an epic journey of over 75 guest posts. Want to learn more about Matt Cheuvront & see how far the rabbit hole goes? Subscribe to the Life Without Pants RSS feed & follow him on Twitter to keep in touch! There’s a lot of talk about Generation Y and out attitude toward work, life, and that word “balance” which I’ve become less and less fond of as time has gone on. Work-life balance, whatever that means, has somehow completely gone out the window. “We” (and yes I’m speaking collectively on purpose) want more – we want meaning – we want purpose – we want a job that makes us feel great – we want a career that never feels like work. Realistic? Probably not – at least not as simple as many will lead you to believe. We get a bad rep because we’re not willing to put in the hard work – we don’t know what it means to “pay our dues” with something that may not be 100% ideal. But honestly, are we really that much different? Is there really anything special […]…

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