Showing posts from July, 2016

They Call Me a Francophile, At Least They Know I Know Where France Is

Our Paris trip earlier this summer is quickly fading into memory, and I didn't even write about it all that much. I did not tell you about the joys of walking to the same patisserie each morning for a pan au chocolat and hot, strong coffee, and being recognized by the counter girls. I did not tell you about making a new friend and walking the rainy cobbles of Montmartre. I did not tell you about the sun setting oh-so-late, so you stop at a sidewalk cafe bustling with people long after dark for wine and chocolate mousse and revel in all being up late. I did not tell you about champagne with Rosy in a square with fountains in the middle. I did not tell you about the light on Notre Dame. I did not tell you about the wonder in Patrick and Beatrix's eyes when they first saw Saint Chapelle, and the Orangerie. I did not tell you about the mix of the old and the new with new art installations placed into Versailles. Or the Pont des Arts. I did not tell you about a Seine

The Drawing Lesson

It's been a long time since I've spent much time drawing. Patrick has gotten into it recently, in a Sketchnote manner. But I've just put to off. SO I was supper excited to check out The Drawing Lesson . I'm not a big graphic novel fan, so I had my doubts that this would work, but wanted to give it a try. And the truth is, I liked it. It was clear on drawing concepts and the reasons behind them. Did it inspire great creativity? No. But did it give me the motivation to pick up a pencil and paper again? Yes, to some extent. I'm excited to see what I might draw next. I received this book from Blogging for Books in exchange for my review, but all opinions are my own.

Paris Bedroom

We really had a great Paris trip. Beatrix in particular has been enamored of all things Paris since we got back. And, as you can see, it was really time to do something about her room. So, yesterday Patrick and I carved out some time, channeled our best HGTV personas, and really worked on it. We knew there were some embellishments we wanted to make, and that the new furniture was not working. We knew we wanted a Paris theme; I had picked up some items off a Buy/Sell/Trade board. Then, that morning, someone posted on a board that her daughter had just dismantled her Paris-themed room and wanted to give it to another girl. So we went right to work. We created a book nook, as a cozy place to read (Beatrix had loved a similar place at the Bastille Day celebration we went to on Sunday). We also replaced a heavy wood bookcase with a metal one that was in the basement, spray painting it for a shabby chic look and adding a globe. She has a new Paris bulletin board, I touched up her

Hurrah for the Red, White, and Blue

Because what better way to spend the 4th of July weekend than coloring poolside with an adult beverage? I've worked with a string of fun coloring books lately, and this was no exception. Unlike other books, these do not all tie into each other and flow into a longer story; there are nine artists involved, so they are sufficiently varied. I liked this, because I liked the way each collaring page was a separate project. They also had a nice variation in complexity, with some pages very complex and others far simpler. It was a nice book to share with my 8-year-old daughter (who, truth be told, likes the more complex ones). The best part, though, is that each coloring page has a facing page with a quote, hymn, or other history, so it's a good read as well — again, another nice thing to share with a history-fascinated young girl! (I received this book from Blogging for Books in exchange for my review, but all views are my own).

Museums of Paris

My friend Jane advised me to get a Paris Museum Pass. I had looked at the "Paris Pass," which included Metro for the week, and written it off as too much, but then she schooled me that there was a difference, and so we went ahead and got them for Patrick and myself (because France does it right, all museums, except for attractions like the Eiffel Tower, are free for kids under 18). To our delight, the Museum Pass allows line-skipping privileges (basically like a Disney FastPass for culture), which made it totally worth it. So we got a Paris Museum Pass, and used the heck out of it. The first two we hit are places that are very special to me — Saint Chapelle and the Orangerie (featuring the Monet water lilies). I love these spaces for their intimacy and the way that you can experience the work exactly as you should.  Having Patrick and Beatrix experience these places I love was wonderful. The next day, we went to the Rodin Museum, which I love, especially the sculpture g