Thursday, March 31, 2011

last day in Paris

On our last day in Paris, Rod took Joey to the Army museum.
I took the girls shopping on the Champs-Elysees.
We got off the Metro and voila! Ellie immediately found a Disney store. Then she found a McDonalds. Do not underestimate that little girl. She got something from the Disney store and she got french fries from McDonalds. She has her priorities. And, apparently, I am a big sucker. Good to know.

I still can't believe that the Disney store is the first store we went into on the Champs-Elysees.

I snapped the next pictures of the girls while we were waiting for Rod and Joey to finish at the Army museum. Rod had a hard time getting Joey away from all the armor and swords. A really hard time. I think he only got Joey out of there because he is bigger. And Joey knows he is bigger.

We all met up at the Arc de Triomphe. Climbed all the steps to the top. Had a good look around and then said our goodbyes to Paris.
Goodbye Paris. We love you.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

the worst park ever

On our 3rd day in Paris we decided no museums, no history.
Just a park and ice cream.
We told the kids the plan and they were excited.
I had heard there was a fun kids play area in the Luxembourg gardens. I had never seen it so I didn't know what to expect.

When we got to the Luxembourg Gardens, Joey and Ellie looked around and they both declared it was the worst park EVER.
My first thought was. . . oh crappy crap. I have promised the kids fun at the park, where is the fun stuff!!
Finally we found it. Mind you, it probably only took 10 minutes. But 10 minutes can be a long time with certain children. You know, the children who keep repeating that it is the worst park ever.
So here are pictures of the worst park ever. Don't the kids look miserable? My poor, poor children.

See this red playground toy? It spins you around and you can hit your head on the big piece in the middle or you can fall off. The danger, I mean, the possibilities are endless. So of course it was a hit with the kids.

After the park we walked past Notre Dame. Ask the kids if they remember it. When they give you a blank look, ask them about the spinning thing. The thing where you spin around and around and try for dear life to hold on. Now that, they will remember. Notre Dame is somewhere in the background.

Then we went over to Ile St-Louis.
And we got ice cream.
I will admit that we went to Berthillon. I heard a lot of people telling me that I HAD to get Berthillon ice cream. Like it was magic powder or something. So finally, I have had Berthillon ice cream. It was good but I am still here. I was not floated into space or anything.

Ile St.Louis is so stinking cute. All the little specialty shops.

Then the kids wanted to go back to the play area in the park. No one got hurt the first time so they wanted to go back. You know, the worst park ever.
Not only did the kids get more time in the play area, they also played soccer with some Frenchies. Rod, Joey and sometimes Gabi played a pickup game of soccer (I wonder if pickup is the right word. If not, I am sure I will be mocked)

Friday, March 25, 2011


I was worried about losing the kids in the Louvre Museum. It is just so big and if one of the kids got lost, I wasn't sure how we would ever find them.
(We have lost Gabi at Disney world. Then we lost her at ... oh never mind, this is a long list. Our parenting skills are not very good in this area.)
So the fact that we didn't lose any kids made it a successful outing.
Score one for the parents!

So how did the kids react to seeing all this priceless artwork?
They fought over taking pictures. Each child had to have a camera or cell phone. And they were so slow walking through each room. Rod and I were saying things like "we have 892 more rooms to get through, PICK UP THE PACE."
Do you know what children do when you tell them to pick up the pace? I think they come to a dead stop. And then take another photo.

Here is Joey's photo of the Mona Lisa. He was so proud of himself that he could get to the front of the crowd. He could push past the 75 people taking pictures of the Mona Lisa so he could get his own crappy, um I mean fabulous, photo of the Mona Lisa.
Here is the masterpiece.

If you want to see the other 8 photos he took of the Mona Lisa, just let me know.

It may be a wonderful museum, but a girl needs a break.

Can we dance in here?

At some point, maybe after 4 hours, we decided to leave. On the way to finding our way out of the museum, we passed things like the next picture. You know, just the Venus de Milo. That old thing.
Is the picture blurry? Or was is just my eyes that were blurry?

Oh look, Gabi is taking a photo. I wonder what she will do with the other 900 photos from the Louvre on her camera.

We did find our way out. Here is a family photo after our day at the Louvre.

See, I still have all 4 of my children.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Eiffel Tower

Rod flew into Paris on March 9th.
The kiddies and I took the train up to Paris to meet him.
First up? The Eiffel Tower.
All the kids have ever wanted to see in France was the Eiffel Tower. It only took me 6 months to get them there. But we did it. We went to the Eiffel Tower. We even went to the tippy top.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Chateau d'Oiron

Doesn't this look like a regular old chateau?
Hey kids, pose for a picture before we go inside.
Little we did know, it is not just a big old house with empty rooms.

I am glad that I have pictures of this chateau. It is hard to explain. Pictures will help.
So the French have all these big old empty chateaux. I don't think they know what to do with all of them. At Chateau d'Orion, they invited one artist for each room to come up with some type of artwork for that particular room.
I can tell you that I have never discussed art so much with my kids.
I can also tell you that they got in trouble for racing ahead. They wanted to see what type of art would be in the next room.
Here are pictures from the chateau.

One of the first rooms is the battle room. In the battle room is this pile of bones and skulls.
Battle room. Bones. Get your philosophy on.

The kids just raced on ahead to see what would be in the next room.
In this next room, the brochure invited visitors to meditate on the excessive payment demanded by time. okay dokey.

This next picture is the dining room. On the wall are plates. Each plate has an outline of a townsperson. Under their individual plate is their wine glass and a napkin with their fingerprint. Every year on June 30th the townspeople get together for a dinner and use their plate, glass and napkin.

If you stand just right and look down in the mirror, the blue lines on the walls form a circle. The hallway of illusions.

And there was a unicorn. Why not? Why wouldn't there be a unicorn?

Grandma and Katie looking at artwork in what was once a chapel.

Next are pictures in the Renaissance Gallery. No modern art needed since the original art is still there.

The kids thought the long walkway would be a great catwalk. Gabi and Georgia are posing for a picture on the catwalk.

To me, this room was taxidermy gone wrong. Jeannette, on the other hand, found this room hilarious.

Joey liked the armor made into artwork.

Dinosaur bones and pitchforks in the wall. Ok. Definitely something to talk about.

And here is a dragon.

And last but not least. . . a BEAR! The kids were pretty excited about this. You had to look through the door to see a bear chained up. The first question they asked . . was is it real??

No, the bear was not real.

There were at least 36 rooms. I haven't even covered half of them.
What a curious chateau.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

chocolate class

My French friend, Anne, told me about a chocolate class for kids in a little nearby village. Her kids were going so I signed my kids up as well. Since Gabi's friend and sister were also here, they joined in. Phew. That is a lot of kids.
We dropped all the kiddies off and then went out for coffee. I think Georgia's mom was disappointed she didn't get to stay for the class.
Here are pictures from the class.