Archive for the ‘blog’ Category

Cycling again

I did a brave and joined a women’s cycling group! Today was my first ride with them and my friend Barbra decided to be brave with me.

Maybe someday I’ll show you the photo of me pretending to stretch next to my bike. Barbra and I always know how to find laughter!

Train travel with Lotus

Last winter I discovered a (recently deceased) British author named Jenny Diski, and gobbled up all of her works.

Her book Stranger on a Train details a train trip she took around the US. Her descriptions of life in the sleeper car, dining and smoking cars, and all of the people and scenery made me want to take a trip!

Lotus and I booked a sleeper car from Portland to Minneapolis and enjoyed two glorious nights on the train. The scenery was beatiful, the meals in the dining car were fun, and the chugga-chugga-choo-choo that lulled us to sleep in our bunks was a fabulous experience!

Our first evening out, watching the sunset, Lotus said contentedly, “This was a good idea.”

We spent four wonderful days with my childhood friend and her two daughters- playing, cooking, catching up, and seeing the local sights. Then we flew home on Monday morning. Lotus and I are on cloud nine after such a beautiful experience!

Galactic Disco bike ride 2018

We dragged the teens to Portland for an organized bike ride, with my friends. Jason had to bail pretty early on with a flat tire on our funky semi-recumbent with special tires.

It was a lot of fun and hopefully all of the bikes will be in better shape for the next one.

 

Xander

Xander got a haircut and is feeling light and fresh. My teens will not have a photo taken unless they are holding a dog. I approve.

Last days in Paris

We ventured out to see the Eiffel Tower at night, and took a macaron baking class. We had a wonderful trip and are excited to fly back home and reunite with the rest of our family!

Travel is wonderful and there is no place like home.

Musée Louvre

Walking around Montmartre district of Paris

Montmartre district has been a great place to stay in Paris.

We did some more walking today and passed through the red light district (ooh la la!) and Moulin Rouge, then through the gorgeous Montmartre cemetary. My friend told me a bunch of cats live in the cemetary and locals keep them fed. The cats were elusive but we had fun looking and spotted several. We also spotted them being fed in a hidden corner.

Next we strolled past Van Gogh’s home.

Then lunch and up through the artist’s corner next to Sacre Cœur.

Paris sight-seeing: eiffel tower, musée Rodin, Sacre Cœur

After a down day inside, we ventured out via metro to see some things. I get turned around often, so lots of extra walking and tired kids.

I was excited to see this Van Gogh, titled Pére Tanguy, because I used the painting as inspiration for a beginning painting class project this past winter.

My paintings… (super zoomed in because I forgot to take a closer photo)

The original…

Xander was too tired to go back out later for dinner, so just Simon and I went out and did some shopping. My friends told me I needed to sample the fancy little yogurts in jars, so I stocked up. My fav is lemon. Yum!

Train to Paris

We said goodbye to Kinsey and England and took the train to Paris!

The boys were starting to get homesick and travel fatigue, which can be seen in the photos. Ha!

Our flat entrance, and teeny tiny elevator. The flat is in the Montmartre district and has been decorated with the modern, space saver units. It is pretty posh!

My first entrée in Paris was apparently a hit because the boys kept stealing my potatoes au gratin side dish, and dipping everything in my duck sauce.

Local junk food sampling is always a hit with kids.

Bike tour of london

We spent our entire first day in London in bed, watching Netflix. I guess we needed a down day!

Day two was a bike tour. We navigated the Underground and had a wonderful, albeit rainy, time riding fat tire cruisers through the parks and around the royal buildings.

The clock tower was covered in scaffolding for repairs.

The tour guide used Simon as a prop to describe the torture, dissembowling, and quartering of those accused of treason.

Simon was thrilled to be picked out of the crowd but later told me the guy was pulling at his arms a little rough and gave him a playful slap upside the back of his head at the end.

Simon stopped into a barber shop on the way back to our accommodations.