Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Happy Old Year...

...and Good Riddance!

2008 has been a very chaotic year for us. The ENTIRE year has been about moving to France - first the clearing out of two households (ours & T's mom), then the actual move (which took about two months from one household to another), then the trying to settle in and learn my way around here. The WHOLE DAMN YEAR has been dedicated to this move. And now it's over.

Now I get to create a new year. I'm looking forward to that.

Now a photo to show what we saw this evening on our trip into Paris...

The big department stores have these spectacular window decorations. Each stuffed animal (and other fanciful things) has strings attached to a motor that makes them look like they are doing all sorts of activities. It was really very cool (but way too crowded - next year we will go in early December - not New Year's Eve!) Here is a link to see some of them in action: Printemps

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Six simple joys

Again, I get ideas from other blogs...

Six simple things that make me happy:

1. All four boys playing with the dress-up stuff at the same time for almost twenty minutes (well, playing with the WEAPONS, anyway)
2. Blue toenail polish
3. Bejeweled 2 (totally addicted)
4. Finally connected (via phone, anyway) with a new friend
5. Getting dressed to go out, but sending DH to the store instead
6. I pink-puffy-heart Skype. Talked to my parents during Hanukkah EVERY NIGHT this week.

A taste of future bounty

Yesterday we all piled in the car, turned on the GPS, and headed for Chartres. Chartres is the one place in France that I've wanted to visit for many, many years. It's the only place I decided I wanted to see before we moved here!

It took almost six months, but finally I did it.

I believe I was introduced to the Labyrinth about 20 years ago. I have been walking this path every chance I get. I've walked on outdoor ones made with piles of stones. I've walked on temporary ones made with masking tape on the floor. I've walked on canvas ones that get rolled up at the end of the evening. I've walked on some made with tile both indoors and out.

I've loved every one. I've even brought my oldest son with me on various occasions (and the others too). They've all been wonderful.

But this one... This is THE Labyrinth. The Original. The one on which all others are copies. People have been walking on THIS Labryinth for over 900 years.

Way cool.

Unfortunately, there were chairs set up, and we couldn't walk the circuit. But I will be able to go back (about an 80 minute drive). I found out what day of the week they remove the chairs.

To me, this is the best thing about living in France (so far!)
Oh, yeah... the cathedral was georgous too.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Toothpaste in the Underwear Drawer

Fortunately, there were witnesses.

Apparently school vacation is already too long.

It's Day Five. Of Eighteen.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Pajama Day

This is the first day of winter vacation. T had to work, but none of the rest of us had anywhere to go. I told the kids we could stay in pajamas all day (thinking that we'd eventually put on our clothes and go out).

But. Three out of five of us were sick, or at least feeling lousy. So we never did get around to getting dressed. Even for sabbath.

E got the candlesticks off of the mantle by himself, opened the cabinet, found the candles and put them in. Completely on his own.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Finish this Sentence...

Carmen over at Mom to the Screaming Masses, suggested this post topic. I thought, what the heck... I don't have anything better to write. (I LOVE her blog, by the way... She's got more kids than I do, and still finds time to blog almost every day. Way cool.)

Anyway, feel free to play along. Put your own answers in the comments section, or link to your own blog. Here goes...

Today I: kept both younger boys home from school, even though only one of them was sick. Mostly I just didn't want to leave the house.

Tomorrow I will: try to do something fun with all the boys. We will probably go out to lunch - something that happens a lot less often than it used to.

I'm looking forward to: actually feeling like France is home - not just a place to figure out.

I could pass on: whining children. Will it EVER stop? (Answer - no, it just evolves into pre-adolescent fury).

Newest song I like: Run the Show, by Kat Deluna. I'm putting it into my first Jazzercise set. (Which, hopefully I'll actually be teaching somewhere in January).

Last show I saw: Weeds Season Three on DVD. We've only got two shows left before we're completely out. (Gift idea... Season Four???)

Something aggravating: Children who NEVER eat what I cook. Also... children who eat what I cook, but whine at every bite.

One thing you may not know about me: Since Carmen mentioned musical fan-dom, I'll go with her theme... I'm a huge John Denver fan. Old and Newer stuff - I was heartbroken when he died.

I can still: remember ALL the words to "Paradise by the Dashboard Lights."

Gift I'd want if money was no object: A live-out Au pair. Who does laundry, and speaks both French and English.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Not 100% sure about what to write tonight. But I really wanted to post this picture.

T has been wearing his baseball cap around for the last month, and it's just so unattractive. So I convinced him to buy this hat, and now he is tres chic!

Doesn't he look French? His grandparents were French, so it's in his blood... though sadly NOT in his language acquisition ability!

Monday, December 08, 2008

Tap, Tap, Tap... Is this thing on?

Hi. It's been awhile. Unfortunately, I'm not sure I have anything to say now either. I realized the other day, that living in France is a great dream for a lot of people. I always wanted to live overseas, and experience other cultures, but the idea of living HERE, never really crossed my mind.

So here I am, living in a place where lots of people would LOVE to be, and I'm feeling all whiny and out of place. Which is not what I want.

What I want, is to be in love with France. No. That's not it. What I really want is to be in love with LIFE. To be excited about WHATEVER I am doing. To reclaim my passion about being (anyw)here.

I've spent so much of the last year just coping with stuff... Coping with kids, coping with MIL, coping with moving away from home, coping with moving into a new home, coping with learning how to shop/live... I haven't had a lot of fun.

But... The school year ends in eleven days. 2008 ends in 23 days. I think 2009 is going to be a lot more fun. Stay tuned...