A bientôt la France !

I knew the month would fly, and it did!

I am bringing the boys to the airport tomorrow morning. Need to be up at 3am!!!!
I had not spent a full straight month with them for a long time, and now I won’t see them for a month 😦

It has been another great week in any case, and we did a few things I had never done before such as the “Visite Insolite” of the Basilique in Lyon with absolutely outstanding 360 view of Lyon (merci, André !). We also did a treasure hunt in the old Lyon and the boys really enjoyed running from one place to the other.

These last few days were also the chance to see some friends, and a trip to the medieval village of Pérouges. Perfectly preserved. A great stop if you are in the area. One of my friends reminded me that their specialty is fried grenouilles. I love these!!!

This morning, I got up early to go get croissants at the nearby village. Always such a pretty walk and I saw some beetles (?) copulating. They were actually completely still. Nonetheless, quite an exercice when you have to hold to leaves :=)

Chatting with the baker he told me that he was up at midnight to start the work. I thanked him to allow us to get our treats in the morning. Poor man seemed to be already exhausted at 8am!

Two more days and Amanda and I are in Venice.

 

 

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Model X in the médiéval village of Pérouges. When latest technology meets history…

 

 

Collage Brullioles Nature

Morning walk to the village

 

La Vogue

We have a tradition every summer we go in France, we attend “la vogue” aka, the carnival. In the nearby village my parents live, it happens around bastille day every year. It is something the kiddos look forward and this year was no exception. I might be looking forward to it as much as them, especially driving the bumper cars! We also get to eat churros and win a few worthless toys from shooting balloons with a small rifle. Memories for life!

Countryside remains as gorgeous as ever as well, and I don’t get tired of my daily hikes by wheat fields and hay rolls.

Vogue

The sun is very manageable, in the shade

Noah, my older one, has been perfectly happy to hang out with his friends all day since the second day at the Club Med. And when I say all day, it’s really all day: from 7:30am to midnight. Good thing I don’t take that personally! I think it’s safe to say that he enjoys the Club Med.

Thomas is about the opposite and I have to force him a bit to go to the junior club from time to time. He is more happy hanging out with me or playing most of the day by the pool.

My own routine is well set with tennis lesson in the morning, followed by pool and some water games the club organizes (water polo, races…), lunch, catamaran, more pool, siesta, more pool, dinner, Scrabble. It turns out that I don’t completely suck at Scrabble, as I did one of my first scrabble combined with multiple words. Should have taken a pic!

My notation of that particular Club Med (Cargèse, Corsica) has gone a little bit down. Without AC, and without screens on the windows to protect from the mosquitos, it’s a furnace in the bedroom and it is very, very difficult to sleep. I gave the feedback. Let’s see if they will fix that in the future (though low likelyhood I go back to this one).

I have been super proud of Noah who joined a show with the Club Med and was the MC. First time he ever did Something like that and was, very objectively 🙂 amazing!

After 9 days of intense sun and farniente, it’s time to fly back to my parents where we are finishing the month of July!

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Corsica discovery continues

It was time to discover Corsica from above and below the sea!

For these past couple of days, we went for a boat day trip that allowed us to discover large areas of Corsica protected under UNESCO, and got a scuba diving initiation. 

The boat trip made me realize how mountainous is this island. It’s literally a huge chain of high and fairly new mountain that is out of water. It really makes for spectacular views from sea.

The scuba diving was super fun with the boys. We were lucky to have a slightly overcast day so we would not cook in our wet suits while waiting. Though this is not the same colorful underwater views of the Caribbean, spending that time with the boys was fantastic. Noah had the best time as you can tell from his huge grin getting back on the boat!

Club Med, Cargese, beautiful Corsica

It had actually been a long time that I had not had a vacation with the combination of hot temperatures, sandy beach, and warm and clear water. And you know what, it is exquisite!

It is only matched by the beauty of Corsica. The dryness of the climate, combined with the alpine style mountains diving all the way to the waters, picturesque old villages and countless picture card beaches, are just fantastic.

Club Med was also a really good choice for this stay. As soon as you arrive, you realize that there is a lot to do and the question is not what to do but how to organize your days to enjoy the most of all the activities! Though the boys have access to their own children camps, they have so far spent most of the days with me, enjoying Catamaran lessons, archery, or simply soaking the sun. I did a little excursion in the nearby village and, oh boy, it is really cute. No wonder Americans are always on awe when visiting Europe. Nothing like it in North America…

Ah, one tip when you go to Club Med, don’t plan to buy sun block in their little store. At €26, it makes you count each drop you apply, and you need each one with that sun!

Evenings have been filled with good food and board games. We are registered for little boat trips and some scuba diving in next few days. Going to be awesome!


Ready for the second leg!

I am wondering where I will have over-eaten the most: At my parents’ or at the upcoming all-inclusive Club Med we are heading to for 10 days. Tonight we just had some home-made Tiramisu, though not exactly a local delicacy, was absolutely delicious 🙂

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There is now a ritual every year I come in France, in July, I go with my boys to shop for the Sales (les soldes). Almost invariably we end-up buying things that are not on sale. This year were some nice shoes for Thomas and a red leather jacket for myself, to replace one I had lost in a flight. I love this new jacket. I don’t quite know where it will fit in the luggages though.

One thing I re-discover every year I come in France: store working hours. First Store we went to was closed from noon to 2:30pm. Seriously?!

Super excited to fly to Corsica tomorrow and join my friend Eric and his Children. Will share pics and vids super soon!

Red Leather jacket

 

 

Home! Or is it?

It has been 16 years that I moved to US, coming back about every year, and I still get this feeling of being a stranger at home. Everything is familiar but it is not quite home anymore.

So how are these first few days going? Well the jet lag has not been (too much of) a bitch. Thanks to a heavy dose of melatonine and valerian root, I slept well from the first night!

Staying at home with my parents is very much similar every year. I spend the first days solving the computer issues and questions they accumulated for the first year 😀, hike with my dad, and do a lot of nothing the rest of the day. My kids are maxing out playing DS or watching YouTube videos. I also hike on my own in addition, because my mom is feeding me too well, of course! Bread, wine, cheese and dessert at every meal… We play also tennis, bocce ball, board games and so on.

I did not bring a laptop to limit my own computer exposure and so all the writing is on the (Windows) phone. Yeah that’s still a thing!

And in June/July, there are lots of days in my family, so the first weekend we had a little family reunion with champagne, cake and candles to blow.

Good start of the Sabbatical. I am missing my love. 28 days before I will see her now…