Friday, January 27, 2023

Happy National Chocolate Cake Day

And i have a hankering to do some baking.


I'm not saying I don't enjoy the days that I'm not eating chocolate cake. But I do particularly like those days when I am eating chocolate cake.

     - - -   Trisha Yearwood

Thursday, January 26, 2023

A thought for the day

 “One ought, every day at least, to hear a little song, read a good poem, see a fine picture, and, if it were possible, to speak a few reasonable words.”

               ― Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, Wilhelm Meister's Apprenticeship

I love this

Monday, January 23, 2023

A little snow in Meat Camp

 "Some people spend their entire lives seeing the snow without ever seeing the magic in the existence of one snowflake.” —Emily Littlejohn 

Life is good

Thursday, January 19, 2023

Revisiting favorites spots in Paris - Part 2 (edited)

Post edited to include two books that may be of interest:

The Covered Passages of Paris by Guy Lambert

Guidebook- The Arcades of Paris: History, Architecture, Walkways by Patrice de Moncan

* * *

Welcome to Part Two of my series covering places I want to return to in Paris.

People ask me what I love best about Paris, and the list is long.  

On a cold rainy day my favorite thing might include just sitting in a cafe reading, writing, drinking coffee and eating, visiting a favorite museum, or exploring the covered passages. 

Excerpt from Wikipedia - "The covered passages of Paris (FrenchPassages couverts de Paris) are an early form of shopping arcade built in Paris, France primarily during the first half of the 19th century. By the 1867 there were approximately 183[1] covered passages in Paris but this decreased greatly as a result of Haussmann's renovation of Paris. Only a couple of dozen passages remain in the 21st century, all on the Right Bank.[2] The common characteristics of the covered passages are that they are: pedestrianised; glass-ceilings; artificially illuminated at night (initially with gas lamps); privately owned; highly ornamented and decorated; lined with small shops on the ground floor; connecting two streets. Originally, to keep the passages clean, each would have an artiste de décrottage (a shit-removal artist) at the entrance to clean the shoes of visitors.

The passages were the subject of Walter Benjamin's incomplete magnum-opus Passagenwerk (Arcades Project) which was posthumously published."

I love the covered passages!

I love them for many reasons, not least of which is the architecture.  Glass ceilings.  Stained glass.  They're all unique.  Some more elegant than others.  

They're full of history, along with places to shop, places to eat.

The shopping is varied - you can find bookstores, clothes, art, antiques, even a shop carrying nothing but walking sticks, Gallerie Fayet (my personal favorite).   

Bins of antique post cards.  A shop dedicated to needlework.  One for stamps. 

You can browse them on your own, or take a tour.  If you look on-line you can find guided tours, or audio tours to download onto your phone.

This blog includes a map to their favorites -

Here are a few blogs i enjoy and their posts about the passages which include a lot of pictures.

And here's the piece I posted at Meanderings and Muses about our own little exploration.  It  wasn't nearly enough.  I can't wait to do it again.

j'espère que vous reviendrez

Wednesday, January 11, 2023

Returning to a few favorite spots in Paris - Part One

First - a little background on this post and those that will follow.  A fellow Francophile and I recently chatted about our favorite things about Paris.  It's easy to go on-line and find the perfect itineraries for your first trip to Paris, or the perfect itineraries for 3 days in Paris, etc.  All excellent.  But we were having a terrific time narrowing it down to a favorite small garden, a favorite place for a cup of coffee or a favorite place to just sit.  Usually it was a particular memory attached that made each place special to us.  And so, as it often happens, I decided to write a little about some of my favorite things in Paris.  Jouir!

# # # 

Yes, yes, yes, I know.  

I remind you of those friends and family members who invited you over so they could share vacation pictures and highlights.

And then set up the projector to flash hundreds and hundreds of slides up on the wall so you could enjoy each and every minute of memories of their trip along with them.

And it WAS fun for the first hundred slides or so . . . 


Welcome to Kaye's version of that vacation slide show.

And it's never ending.

This, in fact, is Part 1 of a several posts I'll be doing highlighting the places in Paris that have special significance to us that we plan on re-visiting.

I know.

I get it.

So this is where you can fix a drink, pull up a kitchen chair and join me, 

or move along.  It's okay . . .

Believe me - I get it.

I haven't traveled as extensively as I would like but it seems whenever Donald and I sit down to talk about "the next trip,' we end up back  in Paris.

I've been across a good bit of the United States, Hawaii (twice), Greece, Amsterdam (many times) and Paris (a few times, not enough).  

Places we still want to go include Italy, Spain and Ireland.  

ONE of these days . . . 

But in the meantime, yes, we're going back to Paris (I may have mentioned it a time or two).  But this trip is the trip I've dreamed of and Donald was more than agreeable when I brought it up.  A river trip down The Seine.

So, in addition to exploring more of France this trip, there are spots in Paris that we fell in love with that are on the list to re-visit.  Because, who knows, this could be our last trip to Paris.  If we want to see more of the world, we need to get busy 'cause we're not getting any younger!

At the top of the list is a visit with one of my favorite works of art, ever.

Ours Blanc (White Bear) by François Pompon

We bumped into this regal creature when we stepped into a small cafe in the downstairs of the Musee d'Orsay and were immediately smitten.

I don't know if that's where he's still hanging out, or if he's meandered off to another part of the museaum, but we're planning on tracking him down to say "hey."

The Musee d'Orsay, in addition to being home to many world famous works of art, is a spectacular work of art in and of itself.  A gorgeous Beaux Arts building which was once a railway station.

When we visited we were looking forward to seeing and photographing "The Clock"

Sadly, we weren't able to because that area of the museum was under construction.

Happily, we'll be able to see (and photograph) it this trip.

And even have a cup of coffee, or a glass of wine while admiring it.

It's now the focal point of the newest d'Orsay restaurant - Cafe Campana


If you enjoyed this little snippet about some of what I love about Paris, stay tuned - there's more to come.

j'espère que vous reviendrez

Wednesday, January 4, 2023

2022 Muses and a Little Meandering into 2023


We spent Christmas at home this year.

It was quiet, and it was peaceful.

And it was, for me, a time of reflection.

As we have gotten older, our Christmases have changed.  And this year brought more change.

The last few months of 2022 saw some family health issues for Donald's family, in addition to his folks moving from their home to a smaller place.

After a few trips to and from Alabama, he arrived back home a few days before Christmas to a wife with bronchitis.  


Better now, but still coughing.

But better.

And getting better every day.

Well enough to start doing some serious planning for our next trip.


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)

Yes.  We're going back to Paris.  But not just Paris.

This trip is going to include visits to Honfleur, and Rouen, and Christmas markets along the Seine.  

A trip I've dreamed of.

And then a few days in Paris before returning home.

We have a year to dream and plan.

Life is good.

It's not always great, but it is good.

I am thankful for the life I'm living, and the man i love sharing this life with.

I think we're ready for maybe a Happier New Year with fewer challenges, but we will meet them as they come.

I'm not one for New Year resolutions, or even a one word resolution any longer (although maybe this year's word from me to me would be "chill.") 😊

But here's a list of gentle goals that does resonate -

These all seem doable; don't you think?

Wishing you all a good year.

May some dreams come true for you.

Sunday, January 1, 2023

My Amaryllis and The Métier of Blossoming by Denise Levertov

 I haven't potted an Amaryllis in forever.  

And had forgotten how fascinating they are.


November 26, 2022

New Year's Day, 2023

Jan. 2, 2023

Soon to be three

Jan. 4 And then there were three ❤

The Métier of Blossoming

 Fully occupied with growing--that's
the amaryllis.
Growing especially at night: it would take only a bit more patience than I've got to sit keeping watch with it till daylight; the naked eye could register every hour's increase in height.
Like a child against a barn door, proudly topping each year's achievement, steadily up goes each green stem, smooth, matte, traces of reddish purple at the base, and almost imperceptible vertical ridges running the length of them: Two robust stems from each bulb, sometimes with sturdy leaves for company, elegant sweeps of blade with rounded points.
Aloft, the gravid buds, shiny with fullness.
One morning--and so soon!--the first flower has opened when you wake.
Or you catch it poised in a single, brief moment of hesitation.
Next day, another, shy at first like a foal, even a third, a fourth, carried triumphantly at the summit of those strong columns, and each a Juno, calm in brilliance, a maiden giantess in modest splendor.
If humans could be that intensely whole, undistracted, unhurried, swift from sheer unswerving impetus! If we could blossom out of ourselves, giving nothing imperfect, withholding nothing!