Monday, November 28, 2011

lait de poule

Do you know what lait de poule is? It's chicken milk, or what we would call, eggnog. But in France it's called, lait de poule, which translates as milk of chicken. Can you think of anything more gross than the name, chicken milk? Me either.

All this chicken milk talk came up over the weekend while we were celebrating Thanksgiving, since now Christmas is just a hop skip and a jump.

But first... check out this tasty little guy...


That's our French turkey. Or as Aidan kept referring to it, a baby turkey (baby turkeys and chicken milk... freakiest meal ever if you ask me).
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Friday morning, before The Husband and I headed down to our first ever Franco-Texan Thanksgiving, Aidan phoned me...

Aidan: "Why don't you bring your running stuff with you and we'll go for a jog tomorrow morning "

Me: dead silence

Because what was going through my head was some crazy multi-mile jog through Montpellier and uh, no, that was not part of my Franco-Texan Thanksgiving plans. But what Aidan had in mind was a turkey trot with the whole family. Our first annual Turkey Trot actually because you know that now, this is definitely a tradition. I mean look how awake and happy we all look...

{turkey trotting in our sleep}

Oh how I wish I had filmed Aidan's Littlest chugging along. His little arms were pumping, his cheeks were pink, and there was a look of sheer determination on his face. As far as he was concerned, turkey trotting was some serious stuff. 
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{turkey, stuffing, and cranberry... oh my!}

Dinner was delicious. Aidan and her mother nailed it (no small feat throwing an American Thanksgiving in France let me tell you). Every bite tasted like America.

We watched the Longhorn/ Aggie game (a couple of days late but it was still awesome), we played charades (here's a tip... if it's your turn and you want to get out quick... mime Eat Pray Love... easiest one to guess ever), and we watched holiday movies. It was perfect. It felt like Thanksgiving. It felt like home.
bisou

Friday, November 25, 2011

It's not too late...

... since it's still 10pm on the west coast, it's still Thanksgiving so, Happy Thanksgiving to all my American friends! You have to excuse me for not saying it sooner, but Thanksgiving has truly become the saddest Thursday of the year in my house. I'm convinced it's the holiday that makes us expats feel the emptiest inside.

We know that back home, family and friends are together all warm and cozy and happy, and we're far away, going about a normal Thursday, except that normal Thursday has the power to suck you into a dark, vortex of lonely spiralling, sadness, and it feels super sucky.

B L A H

But... and this is a big but... this year I am celebrating Thanksgiving! Just not on Thanksgiving. Tonight The Husband and I are headed to Aidan's house in Montpellier for a Thanksgiving weekend celebration and I couldn't be more excited. We're having a traditional Thanksgiving dinner followed by some pre-recorded American football, and there will be no French allowed at all. None (see, I told you it was exciting!).

The Husband, Fifty, and me all wish everyone a wonderful holiday and safe travels. Now I gotta go and turn my frown upside down.

gobble gobble gobble

bisou


Tuesday, November 22, 2011

tidbits

{hibernation is imminent}

Please enjoy these recent tidbits from my life...
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You know how they tell you how dangerous texting can be? Like don't text while driving and, don't text while walking. Well it's true.

Do. Not. Text. While. Walking.

Last week in Dublin, I bit it. I bit it hard. I was texting my uncle as I walked along. I didn't see a curb and B A M !  Total utter humiliation. And nobody even saw me. So basically I was embarrassed for myself. Like I didn't want 'me' to see 'me' fall. Mortifying.
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Back story: Aidan has three children, so in her house her name is Mommy and her husband's is Daddy. So naturally, Aidan and her husband refer to each other as "Mommy and Daddy" at times. But one time, as we sat sipping Rosé on the terrace, Aidan wanting me to tell her husband something, looked over at me and said, "Tell Daddy..."

So you can only imagine the fun that I've had with that.

Flash forward to this past weekend... The Husband was in the living room playing around with the cable box when he looked at me and said, "I need to call Daddy."

? ? ? ? ? ! ! ! ! !

Now please try to imagine the expression on my face as I looked at my 6'2" husband after the word, "Daddy" came out of his mouth.
"Um, who is Daddy?" I asked, knowing full well that he wasn't talking about his own father and silently praying that he hasn't made a new 'friend' of some sort that I was unaware of.
"Aidan's husband. Isn't that his nickname?"
It is now.
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Anyone ever play Just Dance 3 on Wii? I played with Niece and Little Niece and while I thought I killed it, The Husband dominated. Which is totally odd, because his actual dancing, like in a club is ridic. As in not good. Maybe from now on he should just memorize the Just Dance moves and duplicate.
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We had a new shower installed last weekend. Want to know why we had a new shower installed? Because B shattered my old one (now B, you didn't honestly think I'd let you get away with me never telling this story did you... silly B).

You see, B is pregnant, and sometimes pregnant ladies have to pee... a lot. And one day, B drove all the way from Cannes to Le Petit Village and didn't stop to pee once (it's almost three hours). This was a major coup, but while she didn't have to stop on the way, by the time she got to my house, that little baby was pressing on her bladder something fierce, so she ran into my house like a tornado, totally freaking out Fifty. A couple of minutes later, The Husband and I heard a loud crash and terrified that a pregnant lady had fainted in our bathroom, ran upstairs shouting if she was OK.

"Yes, I'm fine. But I think I may have broken your shower."

Now please pay attention to the wording... I think... and I may have.

Total hogwash.

The whole bottom half of the shower cabin was missing. There was no, "I think" and "I may have" about it.

What happened was, B had stood up, and as she did, she hit the top of her head into the bottom of the open window But she did it so hard, that the window lifted up, became unhinged, and crashed into the shower door.

Homegirl has one crazy hard head.

Silver lining... my new shower is much nicer than the old one. And in fairness, the last time The Husband and I went to B's house, she told us that we could break anything that we wanted. What a sweetheart.
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For more tidbits... check out this interview featuring yours truly on A Matter of Taste.

bisou

Sunday, November 20, 2011

pints, pints, and more pints

{the perfect pint}

Behold.. the most perfect pint in the history of pints.. poured at Mulligans (where my grandparents used to drink). This is where you get the best pint in Dublin. And if it's the best pint in Dublin then it has to be the best pint in the world. So there you go.
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The first night in Dublin (only an hour after arriving actually) I got the fish and chips I had been waiting eleven months for. Salty, vinegary, greasy perfection. That was followed by a few pints down at the local where The Husband felt it necessary to liberate a Guinness glass (or two...) to pack away in the suitcase.

And besides all the contraband, I came back from Dublin with a nasty little cold. I guess all this sunny south of France living has made me too delicate for the damp Dublin weather. That, and it didn't help that I found myself halfway into town one day and realized that I had completely forgotten my coat... in Dublin... in November. What to do but pop into Penneys for what is now my new favorite scarf (it's a snood really). Blue and camel striped and I love it (and P.S.... how fun is the word, snood? Love it. I think I'm going to say it all day... snood, snood, snood).

D I G R E S S I O N

But The Husband and Gatz did manage to stay out of the pubs long enough for a little sightseeing like so...

{Christ Church}

{Trinity College}

But really, it always came back to this...

{Guinness factory}

and this...

{best friends forever}

Saturday night we went out. And by out, I mean O U T. Like getting home at 3a.m. out. Cocktails at Koh, dinner at Yamamori, drinks at Octagon Bar, and Irish craic (that means hokey fun by the way) all over Temple Bar. 

And do you want to know the best way to recover from a 3a.m. Temple Bar bedtime? Pints down the local on Sunday where I got to have what was probably my best pub experience ever... Downton Abbey was being shown instead of some lame football (soccer) match that I don't care about. Downton Abbey! In the pub! On the telly! Clearly the only appropriate way to watch Dame Maggie Smith in all of her Countessy glory is with pints and packs of bacon fries.

bisou

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Food Whore: The Origin

You know how I'm always going on about The Husband's insatiable appetite for food (usually for icky things like raw beef, tongue, and brains) and refer to him as Food Whore like here, here, here, and here

Well, here's my little food whore at the beginning...

{evidential proof}

... two years old, clutching a croissant in one hand and a linzer tart in the other with powdered sugar smeared all over his nose. Clearly, he was born this way.

greedy, adorable, sweetness.

bisou

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Versatile: Dublin


Tomebug at The Tao of Me has passed on the Versatile Blogger award to me. Thanks Tomebug! And since I'm off to Dublin tomorrow with The Husband and Gatz (Gatz... that will be fun, I'm going to need one of those electric shock collars you put on the dog to keep them in the yard), and because the award is green, I'm dedicating it to the Fair City and the things I'm looking forward to doing while I'm there, like...

1. Fish and chips. Friday night I'm all about fish and chips smothered in salt and vinegar followed by a couple of pints down at the pub (where I know I will succumb to a few packs of those horrible bacon fries. So wrong, but so delicious).

2. A can of Club Orange. It's like Orangina, but a tad bit sweeter, but nowhere near as sweet as Sunkist. It's the nectar of my childhood (and for morning after pub nights when my tongue is bacon fry coated. So gross, but so true).

3. Shopping at Penneys (aka Primark in the UK) for trendy bits and bobs that I don't need. Penneys is like crack. It's cheap and you can't get enough (that was extremely politically incorrect, I apologise).

4. Saturday night sushi with friends at Yamamori. I honestly don't know which I'm looking forward to more, seeing my friends, or the sushi. It's a tough call. (Hogwash! My friends win hands down. My sushi won't talk to me in English like my friends will. Because that would be scary.)

5. And using Gatz as my excuse, getting all touristy around the place. We're hitting up Temple Bar post-sushi for Guinness and hokiness galore. I can almost hear the fiddles and flutes already.

6. Starbucks. Duh. (and please, pretty please let the red holiday cups be out already).

7. The feeling of being back in my city. Even though I am not a native Dubliner, it feels like mine. It's where I came into my own and became me. It's where I got to experience my single in the city years (every girl should get to have single in the city years). Those are the best. Not for dating anyone, but for dating yourself. It was a treat and now that I'm an old married lady without a city in sight, I am beyond grateful to have lived those years. Live a lot, learn a lot.

Bidawee

Lacey in the City

The Everyday Life of a Young American Girl in France

You guys feeling versatile?

bisou

P.S. Welcome to the world Baby T! Texas Girl's very own baby boy who came into the world yesterday at a whopping 9lb 4oz and 21 1/2 inches. Now that's Texas sized! I love you both oodles and doodles and shnoodles. 

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

boo-lated


H A P P Y  H A L L O W E E N !

Obviously, this message from Fifty is a little late thanks to a burnt out Mac charger. I was without my laptop for a few days, and when the new charger arrived a couple of days ago, Fifty was not in the mood for a fashion show. And of course on Halloween, when he had been in a fashion show kind of mood (or maybe had been carried away with the Spirit of the Great Pumpkin) and wore his BOO t-shirt all day, I like a very bad Mommy, didn't snap a single picture. But I couldn't not post this because what if next year he outgrows it? So here you go. Fifty in all of his Halloween glory courtesy of his Texan Chihuahua girlfriends, Molly & Sissy who were thoughtful enough to send the t-shirt it to him. Thanks Molly & Sissy and your accordion playing Mama.
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And now, on another belated note, I'm going to answer those questions that you asked. (Bet you thought that I had forgotten all about them didn't you? Well I didn't.)

Bourbon & Pearls: Who takes the bins out, you or hubs? 
Both. We're equal opportunity binners in my house (well except for Fifty, he doesn't do anything. Lazy sod). But I usually end up taking the trash and The Husband takes the recycling. Not sure why it ends up working out that way but it does (And once again, Fifty does neither.)

MademoisElla Coquine: Do you ever come to Paris? 
No, I don't. Can you believe it? I can't. I mean I have been to Paris, but I haven't in the past two years. The past two years being the time that I've lived here. And before I moved, I was convinced I would be TGVing myself all over France, and especially to Paris. But, I am planning on making it up there in the next year. Paris 2012, that's my new motto.

Mrs. Exeter: What do you find is the most annoying thing about living in France?
Ay yai yai... where to start... well let's see, I guess for me anyway, the most annoying thing is the total unpredictability. It's like, "Hey honey, do you want to go out to eat tonight?"... "Sure, I'd love to." And then you pull up to the restaurant and discover that it's closed. Or you go to La Poste and they've decided to open thirty minutes late or close thirty minutes early. And stores closing from 12:30-2:00 for lunch. (I could go on and on and on...)

Erin: And what do you love most about living in France? 
(A nice way to balance out the above question I think, a bit of yin and yang if you will)
All the wine and cheese.
But since that would be cheating... I love being here for the adventure part of it. The once in a lifetime feeling that I get sometimes. As much as living in Le Petit Village is about as inconvenient as inconvenient can be, it is also stunningly beautiful. Most mornings Fifty and I jog as the sunrises over the Luberon, and the vista is amazing. Breathtaking even. And on occasion, hot air balloons can be seen floating off in the distance. HOT AIR BALLOONS! It's amazing. And surreal. And fairytale like. And I'm really lucky.

Amber H-B: Do you miss Texas food?
Uh, yeah. I miss Tex-Mex something fierce. And BBQ. Like a nice piece of tender brisket drench in Rudy's BBQ sauce... d r o o l. But luckily, I did recently purchase the Homesick Texan cookbook. That should help some (my waistline, not so much).

Kara: Which local French wine would you recommend? 
Hmmm... excellent question. But by local do you mean Le Petit Village... the Luberon... Provence? And keeping in mind that while I love wine, I am by no means an expert by any means. Not at all. So how about I just tell you some of my favorite French wines. And I'll stick with red wines that are currently tickling my fancy....
Brouilly, a Beaujolais, and Vacqueyras and Cairanne, both Côtes du Rhône wines.
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And to all of you who took the time to vote for the ASPCA funding, 

Fifty and I thank you from the bottom of our hearts.

Friday, November 4, 2011

autumn swatting


Isn't this pretty? 
The autumn sun shining on those woolly little angels. 
I mean, isn't it just so beautiful and quaint? 
Yes, it is. 
But the woolly ones come with lots of flies. 
And when you live right next door, all this idyllic beauty can be quite irritating. 


See, that's my house they're lollygagging in front of. 
(at least the Nazi Ghost Zombies are being kept busy fly swatting as well)

Plus, my morning wake up call comes from this guy every morning. 


eeyore! eeyore!

bisou

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

pain in the petunia

I'm sitting here typying on Honey Jr's laptop that likes to take a nap after every ten minutes (total without warning shutdown) while I hope and pray with my fingers and toes crossed that today will be the day that my new Mac charger will arrive in the post so I can return to my regularily scheduled life because life without your Mac when you live in the middle of back a** nowhere is no sort of life at all.

So since I can't really post (because I can already hear this half dead laptop making the pre-shutdown whirring noises), I bring you this old post, from exactly two years ago, when I wasn't with a broken Mac charger, waiting on a new one, and had sometime for Some Serious Thoughts...
(originally posted 2nd November 2009)

I'm seriously thinking about decoupage. I like to think about doing things but I rarely do them. I'm more of a planner than a doer. Ok, so I did move to France and I am writing this blog, but decoupage? Could I be a decoupager? It is French. And Marie Antoinette dabbled in a little decoupage. Maybe if she had kept her nose in the decoupage, she could have kept her head. Just a thought.

I'm also seriously thinking about getting involved in local politics. Like being the Mayor of Le Petit Village. Can I do that? Would my EUness be enough or would I have to be fully French?

Must google later and find out.

I seriously think they need me. The current Mayor is a Communist representing the local Communist Party. Not that there is anything wrong with Communism. If that's your bag then go right ahead, it's a free village (isn't it???). But all I'm saying is that although it's a beautiful thought, it never really works out that way and all your left with is a tyrannical dictator, drab clothing, and a bowl of gruel.

And get this... the other political party in Le Petit Village is Fascism! I'm not making this stuff up! We've got the Communist Party and the Fascist Party! Who decides to be a Fascist in 2009? It's like someone just woke up angry one morning, "Mommy, when I grow up, I want to be a Fascist... AND THEN EVERYONE WILL SUFFER!!! May I have my juice box now?"

In a village of 260 people, I think they need another option other than Mussolini or Marx. They need a softer, cuddlier option. That will be my campaign slogan... Vote for Sara Louise, the soft and cuddly candidate. I would guarantee carmel apples, fondue parties, story time, and outlaw drab clothing. We would have merry-go-rounds, and hayrides and eat chocolate brownies for breakfast. And all the shutters will be painted pink, because I said so. I promise that there will be benevolence in my dictatorship.

Hugs for everybody!

So to sum up; I'm seriously thinking about decoupage and I'm seriously thinking about becoming a dictator...
 
 oops, I mean getting involved in local politics.

bisou



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