dimanche 28 août 2011

Our Street



We live right in the centre of our village, just a stone's throw from the local primary school. It's really quiet here, apart from when the children are dropped off for school.
You can see on the above photo where Marie-Kate is riding her bike, the village hall (salle des fêtes) , the bottom half is in stone and the top half rendered wood. There's quite a lot that goes on here, from plays to mini opera's and of course the annual Christmas Fair.
The house the children are in-front of here is enormous, and only two people live here! The owner is planning on opening a mini creche in the future some where within there.
The only thing we need now is a boulangerie or a local delivery service that delivers fresh baguettes, croissants, even if it was just once a week it would be wonderful.

vendredi 26 août 2011

Riding a bike at last

Mind that bottom, she still adamantly squeezes into her 6 year old leggings even though they are far to small.

It's been quite a difficult year, with the stress of selling our house in Sanary and moving to the Paris suburbs, then getting the house renovated (still lots to do...).
We managed a short break all together and that was great, now we're back we are trying to make more time for the family. I've been taking Marie-Kate out so she could at last learn to ride her bicycle that she had for her birthday. She had been reticent about riding it, since she didn't want to fall off, but as of this week she can ride her bike and she loves it.

The photo was taken in the Vexin countryside in a little village called Jambville. We were there to pick up Gabrielle from a sleep over at her friends.

lundi 22 août 2011

Cité des Sciences...unplugged Sunday





We did manage a whole day without connecting to internet, instead we visited the Cité des Sciences in Paris. It was cheaper for us to buy a year pass for the 7 of us (72 euros) that allows you to visit as much as you like, the Palais de la Découverte during the year too, so great value.

Charlotte having a conversation with Mona Lisa

Ok, it's not like a long hike going here, but it's a start, right? And this weekend coming we are going hiking, with the children...(15 kilometers, but they don't know that, yet..)

We have to unplug more often, especially since even Alain has become hooked on his new Apple friend, too.

Center Parcs




For the last holiday weekend in August we went to Center Parks which is a about one hour and a half's drives from here. I have to say, I was surprised how good it was. The kids loves Aqua Mundo, tree trekking and just having the freedom to do as the wished in a safe environment .
I forgot to pack the charger for my camera so I haven't got many photos (however Charlotte has) so this is all for now.


Gaby took a couple of nice photos of ducks that were just outside our cottage.

And Alain turned 37 and we couldn't bake a cake because I can't work with microwaves, so Charlotte made some pancakes



Ok she didn't manage to toss this one perfectly, but she got there in the end and after our awful meal in a center parks restaurant, I much prefer to eat one of her pancakes any day.

lundi 8 août 2011

Ferme de Gally



Saturday, we went to pick our own fruit, vegetables and flowers and La Ferme de Gally which is about a 20 minutes drive from where we live. Boy, this place was really busy, despite the frequent downfalls of heavy rain.

On the way to the farm, you can see the Eiffel Tower in the distance


The farm isn't organic, however, they don't use pesticides unless absolutely necessary.
As it was our first time and it was rather late in the day, we didn't buy much, but we'll be going back for more soon.
The children moaned a little (they always find something to complain about) but they enjoyed picking their own fruit, especially raspberries.

Flowers are sold by the kilo and this was Marie-Kate's flower harvest.
Marie-Kate hiding in the weeds next to the cabbages... well I think they were weeds

We were supposed to go to explore the farm's mazes afterwards, but never had enough time, glad really as it didn't look that good and was expensive, and would have cost us over 26 euros. We have certainly seen better mazes, like the one a Thoiry and Cormatin ...

vendredi 5 août 2011

Unplugged Sunday


I have noticed that Oliver and Charlotte spend far too much time plugged, be it, on their mobiles, watching dvds, and especially on internet (Facebook), it's quite worrying really.
I have been wanting us to switch off and have time together doing family things, playing board games, going for walks, or just talking. So as of this Sunday we will be disconnecting for the whole day, no tv (well no-one watches French television here) no internet, no texting, no phone calls that go on forever and as for Angry Birds, I think I'm going to ban it from being played in this house!
Maybe we'll just hang-out at home and cook and just be together, or maybe we'll go and visit the Orsay Museum. I'll let you know next week.

My churros and Charlotte's photos



Since coming back from her holidays, Charlotte has rekindled her love for photography.



Today she took about a million photos of me making some Churros for the first time (thanks to my new cookbook "Mexican Food Made Simple).
They were really easy to make and were gobbled up by my five ever hungry children.


This week we'll be eating Mexican a lot, it brings back memories of my good friend Adrianna, who showed me how to make the best guacamole ever.

And of course London and that great restaurant Wahaca, run by the author of my new book.
Bon appétit!

jeudi 4 août 2011

17



This year for the first time, Oliver didn't celebrate his birthday with us. He was still in America and had his birthday (and cake) at the Hard Rock Café, and then spent most of his birthday on a flight back to France (via Frankfurt).
On Sunday, we all sat down to lunch and birthday cake with one seriously jet-lagged Oliver.

The next day, Oliver was ill and I had caught an awful cold, but we are getting better, however, Oliver who is a creature of habit is having a hard time sleeping and waking when he should. Alain thinks it will take him more than a week to get back to normal, until then, Oliver is one jet lagged boy.

mercredi 3 août 2011

Brittany in a kayak and Port Louis



On a whim we bought a kayak, we always wanted one when we lived in Sanary but never got round to actually buying one. The first day we went across to Port Louis for a picnic, we had the whole beach to ourselves which was great.

On the subject of Port Louis, a little seaside town I love, I was disappointed to see that our favourite bookshop there is closing down. We always buy books from this place and it's sad to know it will not be there, next time we go.

Something new to see in Port Louis. Elephants. There are lots dotted around the town, but I just got a shot of these two.


Brittany on the beach




Alexis and Marie-Kate love spending time on the beach and they are lucky enough to have grand-parents who live within 50 meters from one, so they spend a lot of time there.
After the first week, we joined the children and eventually made an appearance the day before coming home

Kinder liked it most when the tide was low.