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Tongue in Cheek
Provence, France
Recent Activity
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When the morning is running faster than your feet can manage, When the day is fuller than your arms can carry, When you know you should sit down and have something to eat, but the beast in you charges forward, When life is not black and white, When you want to do your best but that idea stays stuck behind autopilot, Then that is when I have to put myself in the bathtub, yes the bathtub, you might say it is my best place to pray, think and breath. Continue reading
Posted yesterday at Tongue in Cheek
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A pile of old French religious books were scattered on the ground at the brocante, dumped out of a box that someone had probably collected from cleaning out an attic. The fountain pen writing in the book was appealing, tagged 1786. Its cover was missing, most of the books on the ground were in sad condition but given their age, older than the two of us standing there, their condition seemed impeccable to me. I reached down thumbed through a few of them hoping to find engravings inside. No luck. But then, gee, I thought to myself, "You are too fussy, almost like wanting to have your cake and ice-cream too!" When I look at old books I always hope to find an engraving, a lovely thick leather embossed cover, a pressed flower, a silk ribbon and a love note tucked inside. Cake, ice-cream and a glass of champagne. Then I remind myself, "Why hope to find more of a treasure? Why not see the treasure that it is." I guess you could say the brocante makes me reflective at times. The brocante with the various old things gathered reminds me of the rich history that we have behind us, the many lives that have gone before us. The brocante makes the world wake up, come alive to me as if I have a chance to peek behind an unseen curtain to witness the play become real. War and peace are written, felt and passed on amongst the bits and pieces found at the brocante. Objects that live on reminding us of another time. They have survived. The beauty of suffering is the song of solemn awareness that comes to our lips, hearts, touch, sight, perspective. Suffering offers us to be present to one another that most things do not. When someone is ill, for example, I tend to pray more for them, touch them, feel them differently, as if our time together is not caught up in what we are doing, but of who we are. Suffering breaks to the core of realness. And that I find beautiful, I suppose, it is a gift to tend to the ill, the weak... and not run away from it. Beautiful because it brings the rawness of life to the center stage. The pages of the old French book had torn off velvet tabs that were used to mark the different chapters.... Continue reading
Posted 2 days ago at Tongue in Cheek
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Our apartment is located at Rue du Chateau, 75014 in Paris. The nearest metro line is two minutes away #13 Pernety, which is a direct line to the Champs Elysee, the Porte de Vanves brocante and St Ouen: The largest antique market in the world. Our apartment is a one bedroom, one bath, with a large living/dining room and kitchen Total space: 650 square feet. Sleeps two. Our apartment is in a very family oriented, multi cultural neighborhood. Across the street there is a bakery, on the other side there is a cafe, and a restaurant on the other corner. Our building is small with three private apartments, ours being one of them. Our apartment is located on the third floor without an elevator, which means 44 steps from top to bottom. Everything you might need is located within five minutes on foot from of our apartment: A grocery store, a fruit and vegetable shop, a flower shop, many restaurants, cafes, nightlife, bars, bookstore, wine shop, cheese shop, gift shops, pharmacy, tailor, dry cleaning, galleries, hair salon, cobblestone streets, hidden parks... it is a neighborhood that takes you to the center of real life as a Parisian. We only rent it a few weeks out of the year. So if you are interested it is best to contact as early as you can. A peek into the kitchen. A view of the bedroom An antique map of Paris hangs on the wall in the bedroom. Our one-bedroom apartment has a queen size bed, a closet, and a dresser. Linens are provided. View of the bedroom Our apartment is furnished with personal items and antiques, it is our second home. Most of the antiques that are in the apartment I bought at Porte Vanves brocante which is nearby. If you ever need a guide to the brocantes-antique markets let me know, I will gladly show you around. From the bedroom, there are two steps down into the entrance. From this photo (above) the entrance (door) is to the right after the picture easel. My Mother in Law and my husband bought the apartment over thirty years ago. In 2013 we renovated it, what an adventure that was. To read more about our renovation click here Our Paris apartment - How we turned it into a Gem. Reviews: Andrea Waltzer Hames said, "Celebrated my 70th there! Wonderful apartment, with all the touches... Continue reading
Posted 3 days ago at Tongue in Cheek
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A very full-on, rewarding work day at the Chateau with the French Muse. An elegant picnic: Baguette, fruit, cheese and wine. Divine. Thank you Nelly for the flowers. To see more follow me on Instagram, check out my daily stories. Continue reading
Posted 4 days ago at Tongue in Cheek
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Me... I am preparing to open the door. To put on my best smile, and wave: "Have fun! I'll miss you! Be good! Be careful! I love you! Goodbye! See you later..." The funny thing is as I sit here typing my blog at the kitchen table the thought occurred to me... When I arrived in France I realized that this was it... That I was most likely going to be living here for the rest of my life. It was a fact I did not look at closely when I married Yann and followed him back to his home country. I was a jumper and asked questions later type of person. As the reality of my decision sank in that visiting a foreign country was one thing, that knowing you are on an extended visit is another, but it is quite another thing to know that this is your life, that this foreign country is going to be your home. I did not take it in stride. Instead, I stumbled with my stubbornness, cried as I compared France to the States finding fault with everything. Making France my home was not as easy as falling in love. I was homesick. I felt that whatever power I had, whatever courage I had obtained, whatever notion of "I can do anything" had left me standing alone with a massive Eiffel Tower outside. It took years for me to call France my home. It took becoming pregnant, having children, raising them as a bi-lingual family, it took sending them off to French schools, doing homework with them when I could not read the words properly, being told that parents do not volunteer in the classroom, nor bring cupcakes. It took birthday parties were singing, "APPY BERTDAY" with a French accent was the norm. It took me years of doing everything the French way (baguettes) with a twist of American (Peanut Butter) on the side for me to finally feel home in France. Having a family made France my home. That first morning when I arrived in France, as French Husband left for work at seven he kissed me goodbye and said he would be home around eight that evening. As soon as the door shut I was alone in France. That first morning when I opened my time agenda book as if it could tell me what to do, or who to... Continue reading
Posted 6 days ago at Tongue in Cheek
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What is love? That famous question that seeks an answer, over and over again. And yet we know what love is. The last time I saw my Grandmother Amaro, she stood behind me and embraced me. I laughed telling her it was a funny way to be hugged good bye? She hugged me tighter, and then holding back tears told me the reason why: "This is how my Mother embraced me when I left the Azores to come to America. When I open my arms you are facing your destiny, your future, and I'm behind you letting you go. That is love, letting others be who they are, standing behind them, and loving them all the more. When my Grandmother opened her arms I saw what she meant. Love unconditionally, easy to say, harder to do. .... Thank you Ellen for reminding me. Continue reading
Posted 6 days ago at Tongue in Cheek
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The family gathers, shares stories, enjoys each other's company while diving into lunch. A family where the core is at home at the table, where nourishment is more than the food they partake and the messages of loyalty and love run deeper than the disagreements or imperfections. A family that doesn't begin nor ends with one generation, where the voice that binds is heard from not only the oldest but full circle to the youngest. A family where the lessons of love are shown by example. Where each link is valuable whether they are big or small, strong or gentle, carefree or thoughtful... The role models. The give and the take. The sorting it out. The who, the what and the where. The knowledge that what you do or don't do truly does matter.... That little foot leaning on the back of the chair. Matters. A family where life continues to continue.... Where everyone does what they can to keep the boat a float: One washes the dishes, another plays with the dish suds, two pair up to dry, while the others clear off the table and put the dishes away We each have a role in life. Sometimes the roles change as we grow, and sometimes we want those roles to roll away. The one playing who was playing with the suds kept everything going merrily, that is a real gift to have and often overlooked. The one who was playing in the suds has become my mother's greatest sous chef in the kitchen, "A big helper Kate is now that she is older." Back home in the States Sacha will find his place, it was never further away than his heart. I feel our circle expanding, I know how that goes, at first it is awkward, unbearable so the way I look at this "moving away" must change, I will look at Sacha's happiness, his joie de vivre, his new adventure become my focus point. xxx Continue reading
Posted 7 days ago at Tongue in Cheek
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Nourishment for the soul, late in the afternoon, a cool breeze caresses while I stand in the garden, my toes wiggle in muddy silk, Sun-ray halos, I bite into the fresh tomato, juice runs down my chin, down my neck, between my breasts... Summertime. XXX Tomato Soup Saute two yellow onions in olive oil, until their yellow turns golden. Add some chopped celery let their leaves join the party. A dash of salt, and a couple of carrots washed but not naked. Take the tomatoes in their tender red skin, slice them in half and add them to the soup pot. Cover with water and a lid. When you hear the soup talking, turn the volume down. Let the ingredients share their story, let them slowly simmer. A glass of white wine never hurt anyone, and fresh mint adds a dash of daring! Blend, smooth and serve with a dollop of fresh cream. Take a bowl, a spoon, a glass of white wine, the whole bottle if you are so inclined, a baguette and go outside, sit and eat on the garden step. Continue reading
Posted Aug 14, 2017 at Tongue in Cheek
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An eighteen-century wooden compass with intricate graphics. I loved what my friend Teresa wrote in the comment section, she wrote: "...Say the things you wanted to hear when you left for France..., and say the things you wish someone would have said to you." What honest good advice, I will follow it. XXX Continue reading
Posted Aug 13, 2017 at Tongue in Cheek
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The first step in accepting... denial. When Chelsea heard about Sacha's move she said, "Oh no! I guess we will have to break his legs." I said, "Or kidnap him." A box came to mind. You see we will be in denial for a few days, he leaves September the 13th. The adult in me is happy for him, encouraging him, but the mother in me, well that is another story completely. I am looking for a box before Chelsea gets to him. Continue reading
Posted Aug 12, 2017 at Tongue in Cheek
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Yes I thought of you!
Toggle Commented Aug 12, 2017 on The Arrow that Flies at Tongue in Cheek
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Or put them in a box and keep them close; lol. When Sacha did an internship in Seattle he fell in love with the people and the city. Of course it barely rained in Seattle while he was there. Sacha has lived in Paris, where often it is grey and raining, which took some adjustment to since it is very different than Provence.
Toggle Commented Aug 12, 2017 on The Arrow that Flies at Tongue in Cheek
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Love that idea xx
Toggle Commented Aug 12, 2017 on The Arrow that Flies at Tongue in Cheek
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Indeed! How lovely that will be xxx
Toggle Commented Aug 12, 2017 on The Arrow that Flies at Tongue in Cheek
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Ah Jackie. I know you know what I am thinking. Genetic memory and as strong LOVE memory your children have double memory xxx
Toggle Commented Aug 12, 2017 on The Arrow that Flies at Tongue in Cheek
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Isn't Kahil spot on. I have loved his poems since I was a teenager.
Toggle Commented Aug 12, 2017 on The Arrow that Flies at Tongue in Cheek
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Hi Lil, I love entertaining that thought, of going back in time to any day with my children. Thank you for reminding me that there are such days, a history of love that brings us to now. xxx
Toggle Commented Aug 12, 2017 on The Arrow that Flies at Tongue in Cheek
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Indeed!
Toggle Commented Aug 12, 2017 on The Arrow that Flies at Tongue in Cheek
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Yes that is it exactly. My mother's words are echoing inside me. Yes that nine hour time difference makes it interesting too!
Toggle Commented Aug 12, 2017 on The Arrow that Flies at Tongue in Cheek
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Yes I left home. And uttered the same words that Sacha has. I so get it, and am happy for him. But the mother in me is a wreck.
Toggle Commented Aug 12, 2017 on The Arrow that Flies at Tongue in Cheek
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Hi Shelia, He will do freelancing work in filming.
Toggle Commented Aug 12, 2017 on The Arrow that Flies at Tongue in Cheek
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Thank you Sharonx
Toggle Commented Aug 12, 2017 on The Arrow that Flies at Tongue in Cheek
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True xx
Toggle Commented Aug 12, 2017 on The Arrow that Flies at Tongue in Cheek
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SO true! At least he can visit my family more often xx
Toggle Commented Aug 12, 2017 on The Arrow that Flies at Tongue in Cheek
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Merci Star-Wonder, beautiful your message xx I hope you are feeling better? Thank you for your prayers xxxx
Toggle Commented Aug 12, 2017 on The Arrow that Flies at Tongue in Cheek
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