So I didn’t drop off the planet…

But I did leave the country.  Voluntarily.

My husband decided to surprise me with a trip – to here –

Not so crappy Instagram photo
Not so crappy Instagram photo


Yes, Paris.  My first time there.  It was a surprise trip that included nice touches like a direct flight (because despite all my world traveling, I kind of hate flying, and by flying, I really mean just the take off and turbulence), champagne that turned out to be expensive, lots of Metro rides, and really sore feet.

A brief recap of the trip includes…

Getting both rained and hailed upon while trying to get to the hotel – something that hasn’t happened since Ireland.

Standing in the Louvre staring at a painting as Josh commented “Wow, there is a whole lot of decapitation happening in this painting.”  It’s true.  There was.

Learning that Nutella crepes weren’t quite as good as a giant warm donut frosted with Nutella (that culinary gift happened in Rome.)  And being okay with that.  Because otherwise, I’d be making a Nutella crepe right now.

Geeking out in the Musee d’Orsay – between Monet, Dega, Van Gogh, the giant clock, the views out across Paris and the architecture of the building itself – everything about it is wonderful.

Getting cursed by a gypsy woman because I wouldn’t play along with her “I found a gold ring, here, you have it…now give me some money because I let you keep the (actually fake) gold band.”  Not cursed out…cursed. Or at least, it sounded like a curse.  We’ll see if a plague hits the household.

Going into the coolest Metro stop near Notre Dame – it was like walking into a 1930’s sci-fi movie set.

Wishing someone sold the Notre Dame gargoyles. I looked for them, but sadly, couldn’t find them.

Walking into a store that sold cooking utensils and realizing it probably hasn’t changed in 100 years – tall wooden shelves and bins, narrow aisles, items stacked up to the ceiling, a whole section of wisks in all different sizes, copper pans stacked up – it was amazing!

The meal we had at Le Plomb du Cantal – a little restaurant near our hotel.  Cheesy garlic mashed potatoes, we bow to thee.

Warm goats cheese…Europe does so many good things with warm goats cheese.

Walking.  So. Much. Walking.

Olympics in French.  They seriously do say “Zut alors!” and “Ooo…lalalala…” and “Formidable!”.

The very nice people who agreed to speak English to us in stores, shops, and cafes.  (Josh does speak a bit of French.  I, on the other hand, remember almost nothing of my 4 years of bad French classes.  Top 40 pop songs from 1988?  Whole different story.)

Getting a few days with just the husband, relaxing and recharging.

Returning home to my kids, who were all happy in their own ways to see us.

Knowing that they don’t have school the rest of the week, which means I have time to fight off jet lag before dealing with real life again!

discreet selfie at the Louvre
discreet selfie at the Louvre