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French la Vie
Provence, France
Recent Activity
When I lived in a monastery, the Abbot asked who knew how to cut hair? I raised my hand, I had never cut anyone's hair in my life but being 19, in a monastery, I had to claim amusement where I could. But before I started my new job as the hairdresser, my friend Laura asked if she could cut Sweet Father Dominique's hair, he was the first guinea pig. She asked him what type of haircut he wanted, he said a light trim. Slowly, with a gleam in her eye, she buzzed every single hair off his head. Every single hair. He smiled. Then with the same look in her eye, she asked if she could trim his beard? He said yes. She shaved it off- his beautiful salt and pepper beard, gone! I was aghast, how could she. Shyly Father Dominique asked if she was having fun? Laura giggled, "Yes indeed." I did not understand Laura's humor nor Father Dominique's calmness. Then she asked him if she could trim his eyebrows! I could not believe my ears I shook my head no. But he agreed, she shaved them too. Father Dominique looked stark naked. Father Dominique looked in the mirror, then he looked at Laura holding the clippers. He smiled, stood up, shook the hair off, and said, "I need to go now, for I am certain you will ask me to trim my eyelashes, and I fear I would agree." Sometimes, the holiest thing we can say is no. Continue reading
Posted yesterday at French la Vie
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One of the first signs that a person is falling in love is that the person smiles constantly. I was looking back at some blog posts when I stumbled upon this post that I wrote about Chelsea when Martin (Mr. Espresso) came to Willows ten years ago. Ten years ago. Ah, one of the many good things about journaling and or blogging is the ability to look back to see how far one has come. Ten years ago almost to the day, they married this year I wrote: Those who are lucky enough to know a person falling in love find themselves in a whirlpool of emotions: A combination of happiness mixed with fear. Tenderness tossing around caution. A longing to peek in with sweetness while offering a listening ear. If you are the parent of a child falling in love for the first time... well let me tell you it is a whole new arena of dos, don'ts and what ifs...and please tell me where is the book called: "What to Expect from Your First Child Falling in Love for the First Time?????" As the parent of such a person I feel like I am sitting in the nosebleed section: so far away yet ever too close. Wanting to cheer, and at the same time aware of the ting of mothering that wants to grab my baby and run back in time. People who are falling in love affectionately touch one another. Ah, the sparks of happiness, the fire that burns, trusting that your child is growing and experiencing those wonderful first moments of what it feels like to be loved outside of the family circle. Yes, it is good. Who knows what will happen, but for now it is a glorious journey towards knowing. xxxx Continue reading
Posted 2 days ago at French la Vie
Make a list of the things that make you happy ------------------------------------------- Make a list of the things you do every day ------------------------------------------- Compare the lists ------------------------------------------ Adjust accordingly ------------------------------------------------------- I read this on a friend's FB page & thought about it all day, so I thought I would share it with you Continue reading
Posted 3 days ago at French la Vie
The sun sends forth the last rays of light, as it pours through my kitchen window spreading across the kitchen table, the gift of light: The sun gives whether there are clouds, rain, or things in the way, then repeats the same gift the next day. Steadfast. Light for everyone and thing regardless who or where or what they are. Contently, as I witness a simple gift of the moment. And thankful that I have peace of mind to appreciate the moment when so many do not have. Continue reading
Posted 4 days ago at French la Vie
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Last night I watched a video (linked below) called: The Birth of a Word. I was amazed and moved. Amazed that someone could imagine how to capture the birth of a word, and amazed at that implication of what that means. Imagine capturing the birth of a word?! While watching the video I realized in a profound way the gift, or trouble our words can have on one another. That what we say does matter. That our prayers are heard, that our life song can lead others to move. Our words have, whether we believe it or not, whether spoken out loud or in our hearts, an energy, a vibration, a rich source that can be given to one another as a healing balm and or as a tool to move forward... Depending on how we use our words of course. If we see our words as tools then what we think and say should not be taken lightly. If we add our words to actions, then we can be encouraging vessels of love, goodness, and hope. The power of words spoken out loud, and in one's heart... it is a gift I want to embrace. In the video "The Birth of a Word" I was struck by the graphics Deb Roy created to explain his point. While listening to Mr. Roy sharing how he collected information regarding television programming, then matched those words to a massive collection of words being said at the same time regarding the televised program they were watching. I was awestruck by the avenues that Mr. Roy's thoughts lead me. Where two or three are gathered... One of the avenues my thoughts went to was about prayer: How words spoken in prayers do resound, move through space and time such as Mr. Roy's graphics showed, creating a mass, one voice. It made me believe even more in the power of prayer. I thought of those in California, the fires and how hundreds, thousands of people have "prayed" "talked" gathered to help process the tragedy, understand and seek refugee, to share the long journey of healing in prayers a unison voice of love. Another thing Mr. Roy made me think about was how he was able to collect/record the words said over five years in his home, then trace them (by video) to where in his home they were said, and then showed, for example that... Continue reading
Posted 6 days ago at French la Vie
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Photo Via Facebook Tracy Englund A letter recently posted by Aaron Draper to the students at Chico State University: Aaron Draper November 10 at 7:25 PM Dear Students, Our CSU Chico President, Gayle Hutchinson, has decided that it would be best to cancel classes next week. I support this decision 100%. The air quality is unhealthy to breathe and many students, faculty and staff members have been affected by what officials are calling the Camp Fire. It is the largest fire in the history of our state. During this week off I don’t want you to think about your homework assignments. Don’t think about what will be due when you return. In fact, I don’t want you expending any energy or thought on your studies at all. This might sound counterintuitive coming from your professor. When we return to school I will bear the burden of figuring out how to account for our missed time and this burden will not be passed onto you. But while our classroom learning has been paused, there is an opportunity for another type of learning. Learn what you can do to help our neighbor. For those of you who live locally, find a way to volunteer to help those affected by the fires. If you have the means, donate anything to help with the recovery effort. (I’ve listed a link at the bottom of this page). Learning how to help your fellow humans is just as important as academic learning – in fact, I believe it’s even more important. Let this week be a time when you can grow closer to others by serving them. Don’t view this time as a vacation but view it as an opportunity to enrich your life by helping others. There is no greater way to enrich yourself than by helping someone else." Photo via Facebook Darci Williams "But don’t text, email or send snaps. People are feeling alone and vulnerable and many don’t have service or have lost everything they own (including their phones). The only way to reach them is by being with them in person. Listen to their stories. Understand what they could never convey in a text. Share their emotional burden. If you are not local and have gone home to avoid the polluted air and danger, please spend time with your families. Many have lost their loved ones and their homes. Enjoy both of... Continue reading
Posted 7 days ago at French la Vie
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“Your task is not to seek for love, but merely to seek and find all the barriers within yourself that you have built against it.” ― Rumi Continue reading
Posted Nov 11, 2018 at French la Vie
Oh Rhonda, how terribly sad. I cannot imagine losing everything plus losing the community as well. I am glad she has you to show her support and courage xxx
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Hello Catherine, I am sorry to hear about your mother and home. I hope you will have reassuring news soon and that your mother's health improves. xoxox
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Where to donate for #campfire Donations for Paradise, and how to help. https://www.actionnewsnow.com/content/news/Camp-Fire-Evacuation-Relief-Fund-500072651.html Continue reading
Posted Nov 10, 2018 at French la Vie
Hi Sandy, Thank you. I am. C
Toggle Commented Nov 11, 2018 on And This I Offer at French la Vie
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I think we are on the same page and saying the same thing. I agree with Diogenes, and even though I live in France I am well aware of the devalued meaning of the phrase, hence that is why I wrote this blog post.
Toggle Commented Nov 11, 2018 on And This I Offer at French la Vie
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I am glad you re-shared this poem.
Toggle Commented Nov 11, 2018 on And This I Offer at French la Vie
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https://www.actionnewsnow.com/content/news/Camp-Fire-Evacuation-Relief-Fund-500072651.html Check this site for donations to #campfire
Toggle Commented Nov 11, 2018 on Paradise at French la Vie
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Marilyn, I am so sorry. How can we help? xxxx
Toggle Commented Nov 11, 2018 on Paradise at French la Vie
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Thank you for your messages of concern, prayers sent and love shared. My family is safe but many others are not. Friends we fear have lost their homes, and or businesses the fire is devastating as you probably have heard on the news. The photos are apocalyptic, I cannot imagine the fear many experienced and what they must face with courage and endurance. ---- One reaches out, another touches deep within One gives one receives A circle life's embrace xxx Continue reading
Posted Nov 9, 2018 at French la Vie
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Thank you Star. Every ounce of love however it comes is needed.
Toggle Commented Nov 9, 2018 on And This I Offer at French la Vie
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beautifully said. thank you. xxx
Toggle Commented Nov 9, 2018 on And This I Offer at French la Vie
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I know what I said sounds judgemental, every prayer is better than none, and yet like you said "meaningful change" is the direction we need to head.
Toggle Commented Nov 9, 2018 on And This I Offer at French la Vie
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Thank you Kathie, I remember when you shared this with me. I am glad you shared it here xx
Toggle Commented Nov 9, 2018 on And This I Offer at French la Vie
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First, political news that is unsettling and divisive, then another shooting in Southern California, and now a tremendous fire in Northern California near where my family lives. Putting my hands palm to palm, I opened them to form a cup. I pray, imagining my prayer taking form into my cupped hands. I imagine, God as love, with loving hands, underneath my own, When every word of mine, no longer has a name, when only silence stands between my heart and hands, when my prayer(s) sits heavy in my hands-- I opened them, letting them pour out to the hands underneath. Letting go. Letting be. Trusting that the loving hands underneath my own hold my prayer. Faith, bring me courage, to face whatever comes my way. Lately, after a shooting in the USA, there is a backlash against the wording "thoughts and prayers" understandable given that it is said so often that they are losing their meaning, like a quick band-aid on a boo-boo, or worse just words spoken without heartfelt depth or direction, almost like a badge shown "thoughts and prayers" instead of a true response. Those two words are becoming washed out and the loving energy they can bring thrown under the bla-bla-bla bus. and yet this is what I can offer wherever I am-- my spiritual energy to go forth believing that it does make a difference beyond my fully understanding how. Thoughts and Prayers as love and love knows no bounds: Grace, healing, and courage lead us. Continue reading
Posted Nov 8, 2018 at French la Vie
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LAY FAUX TOY Memory from 1992 "Corey, there are two...eu...eu...chairs, old ones, nice ones, I think they are nice. Someone in the office building threw them away, the chairs are outside by the garbage, should I bring them home?" My French Husband said out of breath, was there a sound of excitement in his voice? "What are they? Office chairs, we don't really need office chairs?" Doubting my husband's judgment, I asked him to describe "the chairs" to me. With a sound of urgency in his voice that stumped me, why is he this happy about old chairs? He said, "They are very nice, big chairs, not office chairs. With green and yellow stripes, you know, les fauteuils!" Free or not, I had never before heard my husband excited about home furnishings, let alone junk on the side of the road. "Armchairs? Lay-Faux-toy? Does that mean armchairs?" Quizzing him like mental Pictionary. "Harm-share! Oui, oui, c'est ca! I "tink" fauteuils, is what you say, "Harm-share!" I could feel his big smile over the phone. "Should I bring them home?" How could I say no to that unusual expression of surprise, delight, excitement? I held the door open as he mounted the seven floors to our apartment. At the top of the stairwell stood Monsieur Harm-share holding a pair of miracles, "I thought you would like them?" Oh did I ever, but I certainly liked that French Husband "knew" and that his "knowing" made him bubble over. We still have the Harm Chairs Lay Faux Toys which have been reupholstered a few times since then. Continue reading
Posted Nov 7, 2018 at French la Vie
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My friend's daughter Charlotte sent me the article below, Charlotte like my children grew up in France with bi-lingual/bi-cultural parents, her father is French and her mother in English. Charlotte thought I would enjoy this latest article from the BBC Travel by Emily Monaco. Hopefully, the article and photos attached well to my blog so that you can see it in entirety. Why The French Don't Show Excitement By Emily Monaco BBC TRAVEL 5 November 2018 When I was 19 years old, after five years of back-and-forth trips that grew longer each time, I finally relocated officially from the United States to France. Already armed with a fairly good grasp of the language, I was convinced that I would soon assimilate into French culture. Of course, I was wrong. There’s nothing like cultural nuance to remind you who you are at your core: my Americanness became all the more perceptible the longer I remained in France, and perhaps no more so than the day a French teacher told me his theory on the key distinction between those from my native and adopted lands. “You Americans,” he said, “live in the faire [to do]. The avoir [to have]. In France, we live in the être [to be].” Writer Emily Monaco was told that the key difference between Americans and the French is that the French ‘live in the être’ (Credit: Anna Berkut/Alamy) The moment he said it, it made perfect sense. I thought back to my life in New York, where every moment was devoted to checking tasks off a perpetual to-do list or planning for the days, weeks and years to come. In France, however, people were perfectly contented to just be. During two-hour lunch breaks, they sat at sidewalk cafes and watched the world pass them by. Small talk was made up not of what they did for a living, but where they had recently been on holiday. Women working at the post office chatted lazily with one another as the queue ticked slowly forward, enjoying the company of their co-workers while I impatiently waited to buy stamps so that I could fulfil my self-assigned obligation of sending postcards home. I wanted very badly to blend in and live in the être, but it was harder than it looked. It seemed that no matter what I did, I exposed myself as an American. I smiled too much. I spoke... Continue reading
Posted Nov 6, 2018 at French la Vie
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French Bistro, Morning: Walk straight to the counter, when the bartender looks at you, nod your head, point your pointer finger up, and at the same time mouth whisper, "Espresso please". Grab a croissant off the platter, pinch off a bit (do not bite into the croissant) and pop it into your mouth, when the espresso comes, down it in two gulps, do not wince if it is hot, glance at your phone, leave the amount on the tag. Say, Merci, Ciao, and leave. Doing the French Bistro is not an art, but it looks like it when you see the French doing it. It is such a part of their culture that they do it as easily as they smoke a cigarette without concern or shame. Having a dog tag along adds to the look. Sunglasses a must, the bigger the better. Take your napkin to your lap the moment the waiter serves your meal. Doing the French Bistro is not just about having a drink, whether you are alone or not, doing the Bistro is also about people watching. Any time of the day. Giving the one over, or being looked at up and down, is not uncommon, the French check out everyone as if they are on a runway. French Bistro, Afternoon: After breakfast and the morning espresso/croissant scene, lunch comes into play. If you walk into a cafe after 11:30 am and see some tables set up that means they are setting up for lunch. If you want a cafe either go to the counter or sit at one of the tables that are not set up. 12:30 is the beginning of lunch. Lunch is served until 2:30. At the Bistro choose a ‘plat du jour’ from the chalkboard menu, or at the counter, you can order a sandwich, a classic baguette sandwich is sliced down the center with butter, cheese, and ham, or butter and cheese. Soda is not a common drink amongst adults. Though if you want a drink order an Orangina. If you want water you will need to ask for it- "Une carafe d'eau, si vous plait." Paris has changed, lunch is served nearly throughout the afternoon... but Paris is not France. Most of France adheres to tradition, lunch 12:30 to 2:30. How dare those Parisians breaking the rules, especially after I left and move to the south. French Bistro, After Two:... Continue reading
Posted Nov 5, 2018 at French la Vie
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