Friday, February 25, 2022

The littlest things. Thinking of the women of the Ukraine.


Annabelle and I are at home being pretty lazy while Don is in town running errands.  

Post Office, drug store, bank.  You know, those little things we just do without much thought.

Unless we're in the process of deciding what to cram into a backpack to carry with us as soldiers invade our country.

My lazy day included pampering myself a little with a mask.

One of those girly-girl things so many women do.

The soothing coolness of my facial mask fought with the salt of my tears as I thought about the women in Ukraine not having a choice today as to whether they might want to have a lazy day of pampering or decide what to cram into a backpack to carry with them as soldiers invade their country.

Some of us love our potions, and creams.  

Some us enjoy playing with them.  Or just knowing they're there.

We paint our nails.  We paint our faces.  We spritz on a bit of favorite fragrance.

We enjoy being women, doing what women around the world do.

And have done for hundreds of years.

Small things.


Material things.

But things that remind us that we're women.

We may be thought of as soft, and we may possess softness others think of as a weakness, but only a fool would think that's the all of us.  Along with that softness is the strength to decide what to cram into a backpack to carry with us as soldiers invade our country.

It won't be their potions and creams the women of Ukraine will be packing, of course.  Sadly, those are only a few of the parts of their lives they'll be leaving behind.

Wondering if they'll ever see them again.

Ever spend a day of pure delicious laziness ever again.

In the meantime we will read stories like the one about the brave Ukrainian woman who offered a soldier a handful of sunflower seeds.

Thinking of Ukraine today.

Thinking about the acts of bravery we will be reading about during the coming days.

Real bravery.

While many much less brave will continue to bitch and moan and whine about wearing a mask during a global pandemic.

This is what inspired me to write today.

Ukrainian artist Olesya Hudyma (b. 1980), "Angel of Peace for Ukraine XI," oil on canvas. She posted 13 hours ago that her family woke to the hum of planes and they are putting backpacks together.

Friday, February 18, 2022

Another reading rabbit hole

Remember the adorable book IF YOU GIVE A MOUSE A COOKIE?

"If a hungry little mouse shows up on your doorstep, you might want to give him a cookie. And if you give him a cookie, he'll ask for a glass of milk.   When you give him the milk, he'll probably ask for a straw..."

Otherwise known by grown-ups as "going down a rabbit hole."

You who are among the curious know exactly what I'm talking about.

Reading books on our Kindle encourages these rabbit hole forays by allowing us to highlight a word or a phrase in the book we're reading to do a web search.  Wonderful!  No more putting your book down to reach for a dictionary, or to jot down a name, a place, a recipe, or a quote you want to learn a little more about.  Just highlight and search  -   VOILÀ!   I've been known to get so wrapped up in the search, I totally forget about my book for awhile.  

Getting back to what I was going to say . . . recently approved my request to read an eARC of The Perfume Companion

Although it was a book I might never have had pop up on my radar, I ended up reading it from cover to cover, finding it fascinating.

I have always loved perfume and have a virtual storefront of fragrances on a shelf if my own.

Many I no longer wear.

Especially now that I am head over heels in love with (aka addicted to) Maison Francis Kurkdjian's Baccarat Rouge 540.  Admittedly, it is out of my price range.  But.  I did treat myself to a bottle.  No apologies.  I am worth it.  (Than you, Cybill Shepherd).

Anyhooooo . . .

Back to what I was saying . . .

The Perfume Companion sent me down a rabbit hole to explore perfume books.

There's a gracious plenty.

Not all as enjoyable as The Perfume Companion, but still interesting and fun.

Coincidently, novels featuring fragrances have always been of interest. 

Stories and myths are in abundance and play a large part in the history, and mystery, of perfume.

These are a few I've enjoyed over the years.

Wednesday, February 16, 2022

Horizon (to Tristan Tzara) by Philippe Soupault


The whole town has come into my room
the trees have disappeared
and evening clings to my fingers
The houses are turning into ocean liners
the sound of the sea has just reached me up here
In two days we’ll arrive in the Congo
I’ve passed the Equator and the Tropic of Capricorn
I know there are innumerable hills
Notre-Dame hides the Gaurisankar and the northern lights
night falls drop by drop
I await the hours

Give me that lemonade and the last cigarette
I’m going back to Paris

translated by Rosmarie Waldrop

Monday, February 14, 2022

My Paris Reading List - NON-FICTION - Updated 2/14/2022

Photo by Austeja Gudziunaite

UPDATED - 2/14/2022



You can find the Fiction list here


Paris: A Curious Traveler's Guide by Eleanor Aldridge

My (Part-Time) Paris Life: How Running Away Brought Me Home by Lisa Anselmo

Paris Peasant by Louis Aragon & Simon Watson Taylor

Joie de Vivre: Simple French Style for Everyday Living by Robert Arbor

Walking Paris Streets with Eugene Atget

The Gardener of Versailles: My Life in the World's Grandest Garden by Alain Baraton

A Place in the World Called Paris edited by Steven Barclay

Lunch in Paris: A Love Story, with Recipes by Elizabeth Bard

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Here's one I highly recommend!

Carousels of Paris by Kaye Wilkinson Barley and Don Barley


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Me. Photo taken by Don Barley

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The Bonjour Effect by Julie Barlow and Jean-Benoit Nadeau

Chic & Slim Toujours: Ageing Beautifully Like Those Chic French Women by Anne Barone

Ritz & Escoffier by Luke Barr

The Most Beautiful Walk in the World: A Pedestrian in Paris by John Baxter

Montparnasse by John Baxter

Shakespeare and Company by Sylvia Beach

Paris Cocktails: An Elegant Collection of Over 100 Recipes Inspired by the City of Light (City Cocktails) by Doni Belau

The Artist Who Loved Cats: The Inspiring Tale of Theophile-Alexandre Steinlein by Susan Bernardo, Illustrated by Courtenay Fletcher

My Paris Dream by Kate Betts

Paris Sketchbook: Jason Brooks

A Paris All Your Own - Bestselling Women Writers on the City of Light edited by Eleanor Brown - Contributing authors include Paula McLain, Therese Anne Fowler, Melissa Shapiro, Jennifer Coburn, Maggie Shipstead, Lauren Willig, Cathy Kelly, Rachel Hore, Meg Waite Clayton, Ellen Sussman, M. J. Rose, Susan Vreeland , Megan Crane, Michelle Gable, J. Courtney Sullivan, Julie Powell, Jennifer Scott, and Cara Black.

Five Hundred Buildings of Paris by Kathy Borrus and Jorg Brockmann

F. Scott Fitzgerald: The Paris Years by Paul Brody

The Lost King of France by Deborah Cadbury

Hidden Gardens of Paris: A Guide to the Parks, Squares, and Woodlands of the City of Light by Susan Cahill

Parisian Charm School: French Secrets for Cultivating Love, Joy, and That Certain je ne sais quoi by Jamie Cat Callan

The Gargoyles of Notre-Dame by Michael Camille

City of Immortals: Père-Lachaise Cemetery, Paris by Carolyn Campbell

The Piano Shop on the Left Bank: Discovering a Forgotten Passion in a Paris Atelier by Thad Carhart

Pancakes in Paris by Craig Carlson

Paris to the Past: Traveling through French History by Train by Ina Caro

Flâneur: The Art of Wandering the Streets of Paris by Federico Castigliano

The Grand Louvre: From the Fortress to the Pyramid by Catherine Chaine

Hermes: Heavenly Days by Alice Charbin

My Life in France by Julia Child

Mastering the Art of French Cooking (2 Volume Set) by Julia Child

Hidden Paris: Discovering and Exploring Parisian Interiors by Caroline Clifton-Mogg

Samaritaine: Paris Pont Neuf by Harold Cobert

The Hermes Scarf: History & Mystique by Nadine Coleno

A Parisian Bistro: La Fontaine de Mars in 50 Recipes by Delphine Constantini

A Walk in Monet's Garden: Full Color Pop-Up With Guided Tour by Francesca Crespi

Permanent Parisians: An Illustrated Guide to the Cemeteries of Paris by Judi Culbertson & Tom Randall

In Paris by Jeanne Damas and Lauren Bastide

Strapless by Deborah Davis

Life in a French Country House by Cordelia de Castellane

The Secret Gardens of Paris by Bruno de Laubadere and Alexandra D'Arnoux

100 Places in France Every Woman Should Go by Marcia DeSanctis

Old-Fashioned Corners of Paris by Christophe Destournelles

Forever Paris: 25 Walks in the Footsteps of Chanel, Hemingway, Picasso, and More by Christina Henry de Tessan

City Walks: Paris, Revise
d Edition: 50 Adventures on Foot City Walks by Christina Henry de Tessan

The Hare with the Amber Eyes: a Hidden Inheritance by Edmund de Waal

The Best of Doisneau: Paris by Robert Doisneau

Paris Pop-Up by Ehrhard Dominiq

A Table in Paris by John Donohue

A Passion for Paris: Romanticism and Romance in the City of Light by David Downie

Paris, Paris: Journey Into the City of Light by David Downie and Allison Harris

A Beautiful Fall by Alicia Drake

Flâneuse: Women Walk the City in Paris, New York, Tokyo, Venice, and London by Lauren Elkin

The 500 Hidden Secrets of Paris by Marie Farman

The Little Book of Paris by Dominique Foufelle

Poems of Paris edited by Emily Fragos

All You Need to Be Impossibly French: A Witty Investigation into the Lives, Lusts, and Little Secrets of French Women by Helena Frith-Powell

Secret Paris by Jacque Garnce & Maude Ratton

Eugene Atget: Paris by Jean Claude Gautrad

Paris Mansions and Apartments 1893 by Pierre Gelis-Didot

Americans in Paris: Life and Death under Nazi Occupation by Charles Glass

The Maid and the Queen, The Secret History of Joan of Arc and Yolande of Aragon by Nancy Goldstone

Americans in Paris: A Literary Anthology by Adam Gopnik

Paris to the Moon by Adam Gopnik


City Trails - Paris by Helen Greathead

Paris by Julian Green

A Drinkable Feast: A Cocktail Companion to 1920s Paris by Philip Greene

Baking Chez Moi: Recipes from My Paris Home to Your Home Anywhere by Dorie Greenspan

Around My French Table: More than 300 Recipes from My Home to Yours by Dorie Greenspan

Au Revoir, Tristesse: Lessons in Happiness from French Literature by Viv Groskop

French Women Don't Get Fat by Mireille Guiliano

French Women for All Seasons by Mireille Guiliano

Why French Women Wear Vintage: And other secrets of sustainable style by Alois Guinut

Gail Albert Halaban: Paris Views by Gail Albert Halaban and Cathy Rémy

Shakespeare and Company: A History of the Rag & Bone Shop of the Heart edited by Krista Halverson

Dior in Bloom by Jérôme Hanover, Justine Picardie, Naomi A. Sachs, Alain Stella, and Nick Knight

Paris: Capital of Modernity by David Harvey

EVERY FRENCHMAN HAS ONE by Olivia de Havilland

There's Only One Paris by April Lily Heise

A Moveable Feast by Ernest Hemingway

The Tuileries Gardens, Yesterday and Today: A Walker's Guide by Emmanuelle Héran

Eating and Drinking in Paris: French Menu Translator and Restaurant Guide by Andy Herbach

Paris Is Always a Good Idea by Renee Herrington

Monet's House at Giverny : A Pop-up Carousel by Bob Hersey

Paris: Through a Fashion Eye by Megan Hess

F. Scott Fitzgerald's Taste of France by Carol Hiker

Demystifying the French by Janet Hulstrand

La Vie en Rosé: A Very French Adventure Continues by Jamie Ivey

Paris under Water: How the City of Light Survived the Great Flood of 1910 by Jeffrey Jackson

Paris in Love by Eloisa James

Forever Chic: Frenchwomen's Secrets for Timeless Beauty, Style, and Substance by Tish Jett

I. M. Pei: The Louvre Pyramid by Philip Jodidio

The Little Pleasures of Paris by Leslie Jonath & Lizzie Stewart

Dreaming in French by Alice Kaplan

White Truffles in Winter by N.M. Kelby

Paris Reborn: Napoléon III, Baron Haussmann, and the Quest to Build a Modern City by Stephane Kirkland

A Day with Picasso by Billy Kluver

French Milk by Lucy Knisley

French Love Poems edited by Tynan Kogane

Karl Lagerfeld: Paris Photo by Karl Lagerfeld

Paris in Bloom by Georgianna Lane

The Ceiling of the Paris Opera by Jacques Lassaigne

My Paris Kitchen by David Lebovitz

L'Appart: The Delights and Disasters of Making My Home in Paris by David Lebovitz

That's Paris: An Anthology of Life, Love and Sarcasm in the City of Light edited by Vicki Lesage

Curiosities of Paris by Dominique Lesbros

The Most Beautiful Villages of France: The Official Guide by Les Plus Beaux Villages De France Assoc.

In a French Kitchen by Susan Herrmann Loomis

Man Ray's Montparnasse by Herbert R. Lottman

A PARIS YEAR by Janice MacLeod

PARIS LETTERS by Janice MacLeod

Mastering the Art of French Eating: From Paris Bistros to Farmhouse Kitchens, Lessons in Food and Love by Ann Mah

A Writer's Paris: A Guided Journey for the Creative Soul by Eric Maisel

King of the World: The Life of Louis XIV by Philip Mansel

Pop-Up Paris (Lonely Planet Kids) by Andy Mansfield

BEMELMANS The Life and Art of Madeline's Creator by John Bemelmans Marciano

My Good Life in France, In pursuit of the Rural Dream by Janine Marsh

My Four Seasons in France by Janine Marsh

Paris: A Love Story by Kati Marton

A Year in Provence by Peter Mayle (and all those that followed!)

The Hotel on Place Vendome: Life, Death and Betrayal at the Hotel Ritz in Paris by Tilar J. Mazzeo

The Widow Clicquot: The story of a champagne empire and the woman who ruled it by Tilar J. Mazzeo

The Greater Journey: Americans in Paris by David McCullough

Paris: Panarama Pops by Sarah McMenemy


Time Was Soft There by Jeremy Mercer

ROOFTOPS OF PARIS by Fabrice Moireau and Carl Norac

Timeless Paris: Ateliers Emporiums Savoir Faire by Marin Montagut

60 Million Frenchmen Can’t Be Wrong: Why We Love France but Not the French by Jean-Benoit Nadeau and Julie Barlow

Quiet Corners of Paris Unexpected Hideaways, Secret Courtyards, Hidden Gardens by Jean-Christophe Napias

History of France by John Julius Norwich

Entre Nous: A Woman's Guide to Finding Her Inner French Girl by Debra Ollivier

What French Women Know: About Love, Sex and Other Matters of the Heart and Mind by Debra Ollivier

Delicious Days in Paris by Jane Paech

Inspired by Paris: Why Borrowing from the French is Better than being French by Jordan Phillips

American Expatriate Writing and the Paris Moment by Donald Pizer

Home Sweet Maison: The French Art of Making a Home by Danielle Postel-Vinay

FRANCE IS A FEAST: The Photographic Journey of Paul and Julia Child by Alex Prud'homme & Katie Pratt

Doorways of Paris by Rachel Puig

Remembrance of Things Paris: Sixty Years of Writing from Gourmet by Ruth Reichl

Spectacular Paris - Rizzoli Classics

Paris in Love by Nichole Robertson

Paris in Color by Nichole Robertson

Literary Paris by Nichole Robertson

The Paris Journal by Nichole Robertson and Evan Robertson

Follow Me Through Paris by Jill Robinson and Michel Delacroix

French Toast: An American in Paris Celebrates the Maddening Mysteries of the French by Harriet Welty Rochefort

How to Read Paris: A Crash Course in Parisian Architecture by Chris Rogers

Communal Luxury: The Political Imaginary of the Paris Commune by Kristin Ross

May '68 and Its Afterlives by Kristin Ross

Paris Was Ours by Penelope Rowlands

Paris by John Russell

Drawing Lessons by Patricia Sands

Be My Guest: At Home with the Tastemakers by Pierre Sauvage (Author), Ambroise Tézenas (Photographer)

Do Not Go Gentle. Go to Paris.: Travels of an Uncertain Woman of a Certain Age by Gail Schilling

Hats by Madame Paulette: Paris Milliner Extraordinaire by Annie Schneider

The Only Street in Paris: Life on the Rue des Martyrs by Elaine Sciolino

La Seduction: How The French Play The Game Of Life by Elaine Sciolino

The Seine: The River that Made Paris by Elaine Sciolino

Lessons from Madame Chic: 20 Stylish Secrets I Learned While Living in Paris by Jennifer L. Scott


Paris Chic by Alexandra Senes and Oliver Pilcher

Impressions of Paris: An Artists's Sketchbook by Cat Seto

Half an Hour from Paris by Annabel Simms

An Hour from Paris by Annabel Simms

Paris Flea Market Style by Claudia Strasser

The Paris Apartment by Claudia Strasser

Paris in 500 photos 500 Photos by Maurice Subervie

Paris: An Architectural History An Architectural History by Anthony Sutcliffe


A Kitchen in France: A Year of Cooking in My Farmhouse: A Cookbook by Mimi Thorisson

Living Well Is the Best Revenge by Calvin Tomkins

The New Paris by Lindsey Tramuta

The New Parisienne: The Women and Ideas Shaping Paris by Lindsey Tramuta

Almost French: Love and A New Life in Paris by Sarah Turnbull

Everybody Was So Young: Gerald and Sara Murphy: A Lost Generation Love Story by Amanda Vaill

Seven Letters from Paris: A Memoir by Samantha Vérant

Quiet Paris by Siobhan Wall

In Love With Paris by Anne-Katrine Weber

Queen of Fashion: What Marie Antoinette Wore to the Revolution by Caroline Weber

PARIS IN STRIDE, AN INSIDER'S WALKING GUIDE by Jessie Kanelos Weiner and Sarah Moroz

Atget: Postcards of a Lost Paris by Benjamin Weiss

Our Paris: Sketches from Memory by Edmund White

The Guide to the Architecture of Paris by Norval White

The Historic Restaurants of Paris: A Guide to Century-Old Cafes, Bistros, and Gourmet Food Shops by Ellen Williams

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Bonne Lecture!

Photo by Paris Photographer Geneviève Thomas of My Joli Coeur Photography