Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Hula Hooping in Paris?

Sure, why not! I've been doing the hula hoop aerobic exercise on my Wii. Not as fun as doing it in the streets of Paris.

Here's how the professionals do it ...

Monday, August 23, 2010

Up, Up and Away

Lily of France... I've always loved their print ads! And their web site is gorgeous too. But this ad in particular swept me away. It reminded me that I'm flying to Paris in 30 days! I woke up this morning thinking it's only 30 days now. And I can't get this song out of my mind ...

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Chocolate Croissant Bread Pudding

Double click to enlarge

How yummy does this sound?

You'll find another variation of this recipe with a bourbon twist here.

Dear Bed Bugs: Stay out of Paris! Signed, Cynthia


It's in the news everywhere you look (a big segment about bed bugs appeared in today's Good Morning America show).

After researching the tiny pest and measures to control infestation ad nauseum, I wonder why this is such a problem now. Bed bugs have been around for centuries.  That's why people beat rugs and mattresses outside with brooms like in some Charles Dickens novel. And I've slept in all kinds of questionable establishments in my time where I'm sure a bed bug has lurked, although I have no memory of getting bitten. I've never had a problem with the critters. Are people becoming more lax with their housecleaning?

Apparently, the traveler must be on guard against bed bugs, even at the best hotels. My strategy is to encase my belongings in Zip Lock bags. My biggest fear is not so much as getting bit by a bed bug in Paris as it is bringing a pregnant one (or a procreating couple) home with me from my trip.


Fortunately, at home I change sheets often, wash and dry on high heat (which kills the buggers). And while on my trip I will have a secret weapon (talcum powder) at my disposal to sprinkle on my body at night (it's supposed to keep the bed bugs away), and of course the previously mentioned Zip Lock bags.

I can't think about this any more.

Until Paris.

Sleep tight!

Monday, August 16, 2010

You're Free To Move About The World

AT&T is a cell phone carrier that knows how to make a successful promotion. Take a look at these great posters. Using just hands and a phone, American carrier recreates a popular idea of painting hands into the colors of different countries.

Friday, August 6, 2010

A Little Bit Country: Decorating Like a Parisian

If you were to go by the book, Entre Nous: A Woman’s Guide to Finding Her Inner French Girl and author Debra Ollivier's classifications of the different types of French style for decorating around home, I suppose I might be "The Provincial Girl." She is a girl who prefers authentic, natural items to store-bought ones. Her down-home style is peppered with baskets, handmade pottery, and dried flowers just picked from the garden. So when I went to the beach on Wednesday, I picked up little bits of broken shells - along with smooth, tiny ocean-tumbled white stones - and when I got home, I placed them with the petals a rose that I "pinched" from a neighbor's garden.
The white roses are from my garden. It's good to cut a few blooms off a rose bush to encourage the growth of more flowers. I water my neighbor's flowers when she's away, and she waters mine.
I'm a little bit country and a little bit rock-n-roll with my blue nail polish. The color is called THE WORLD'S COOLEST by Essence, a German brand. If you think it's not a color that Paris girls would wear, wrong! I was reading a blog where the writer posted about this robin's egg blue color nail polish. "The fun, bright color will fittingly welcome the warmer temps while offering your nails a unique allure. I snapped the picture above seconds ago on the Paris metro, Beyoncé rocked the color with flair in her Why Don’t You Love Me? video, and Jessica Alba has worn the color on many the red carpet." Rock on, until Paris ...

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Stamp Art With French Stamps

This photo is from the Martha Stewart online tutorial, which you can view here. If you have any stamps from France, you can make the charming Eiffel Tower collage pictured above.

Until Paris ...

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Bague d'orteil

How am I amusing myself in the interim between here and now and Paris in September?
With my $2 blue rhinestone bague d'orteil (toe ring). Isn't it cute? Hey, my feet aren't too shabby for being 50 years, I must say.
What color nail polish is that on my toes? Revlon nail polish in Plum Seduction.

I am thinking about getting a manicure or pedicure in Paris. Any suggestions where to go? I'd love it if there was one close to where I will be staying at the Grandes Ecoles ...
This video is great - it talks about the 5th arrondisement, where the hotel I'll be staying at is located. And - voilà* - it shows a great place (The Grande Mosquée de Paris) where I can get some spa treatment! (Watch more Paris videos at

Until Paris - in exactly 50 days!

* VIOLA/voilà

A viola is a flower or a musical instrument. The expression which means “behold!” is voila. It comes from a French expression literally meaning “look there!” In French it is spelled with a grave accent over the A, as voilà, but when it was adopted into English, it lost its accent. Such barbarous misspellings as “vwala” are even worse, caused by the reluctance of English speakers to believe that OI can represent the sound “wah,” as it usually does in French. “Wallah” is a Hindi word for a worker, and “Walla” is half of the name of the Washington State city of Walla Walla.~ from

From the BBC series on Paris, Blood and Chocolate (Part 2 of 3). Enjoy!

Streets of Paris - I shot this the day I left Paris, on a rainy September morning.

Small group Paris tours for women