Monday, February 28, 2011

This one's for my Papa

Just got home to Evreux from a whirlwind week of Nice, Monaco, Amsterdam, and London.  Next I'm off to Provence for a couple days.  (God I love these gratuitous French vacations!!)

I'll update more later.  I just loved this picture and had to post it now.

Love you Pops!

Monday, February 14, 2011

à la française

The last few days at work I've been teaching the kiddos about Valentine's Day in America.  I always do a lesson on big holidays in America... Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas so far... and they always love it. France also celebrates la Saint Valentin, so I usually begin by asking the students what some of their traditions are in this country.  Gifts, flowers, chocolate... the usual.  They all knew about the holiday but none of them seemed excited about it.  On Friday, one of the teachers told me that in France, Saint Valentin is only celebrated by couples.  Ah.  No wonder a bunch of 8-year-olds seemed nonplussed.  They got excited about my pictures of candy hearts and chocolate and that's about it.

So I decided to point out the differences a little more clearly in my subsequent lessons.  "In America, Valentine's Day is a day to share with your friends and loved ones.  Tell your Mom 'I love you!' Give your sister a card.  Give your brother a hug.  Tell your best friend she's great."  I had them make cards at the end of the lesson and they finally started to get into it.

Aside from the whole consumerism bullshit that happens today, I actually really enjoy Valentine's Day.  The American version. When I was a kid I loved buying those cardboard boxes of my favorite cartoon character-themed Valentines at the grocery store...  even in high school I'd give them out to friends but save the one with some clever (subtle!) variation of Be Mine and stick it in my crush's locker(s).  I like sharing those red velvet cupcakes with a little heart sprinkle on top with my friends. I like the whole concept of having a valentine. It doesn't have to be serious, it can just be playful and mysterious.  In France it seems that you can only have a valentine if he is your copain. In America you can ask someone to be your valentine and it's not as serious.  It could be the start of something serious... but if you get turned down it's no big deal and you can just blame it on the dumb holiday of consumerism.  Hallmark made me do it!

Then again, there's something to be said for having a valentine à la française.

Thanks for the stickers, Mom.  (I love you!)  The kids loved them.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Wednesday, February 9, 2011


Just booked hotel rooms in Paris for what will probably be the best birthday weekend ever.  Yes, I'm going to Disneyland Paris.  No, I can't believe I'll be 24.

Also just found out my dearest friend Sofie is coming to Europe right after my other dearest friend Beth is coming to Europe, right when my contract is ending (which means no more work and lots of PLAY!).

And I'm seeing Reel Big Fish and Suburban Legends (in Europe! twice!) in a couple weeks.

I decided I'm staying through the month of May.  Perhaps coming back for another year.

Work for me tomorrow will consist of making Valentine's cards with adorable 8-year-olds for a couple of hours.  I don't have any morning classes because many of the teachers are en grève.

I went swimming this morning and loved it.

I can't believe my life right now!  What is this?!

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Oh you know, karaoke and shit

In one of my more lively classes today:

Reviewing clothing.
I hold up a picture of shorts.
Me: "Okay, what is this?"
Girl: "Skirt!"
Me: "Well, no... it almost looks like one though, good point... but see, they're like pants, but shorter... so they are shhh---"
Boy: "Shit!"

Talking about sports in America.
I'm making a list on the board.  Football, basketball, hockey, golf, etc....
Me: "Okay great! That's a lot! Anything else?"
Another Boy: "Karaoke?!"

Friday, February 4, 2011

Vivez la langue

EF - Live The Language - Paris from Albin Holmqvist on Vimeo.

I really like this video.
(...même si je n'ai jamais eu une très bonne expérience avec EF.)

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

le bonheur aux lèvres, un peu naïvement

Sorry, no words this time.  They couldn't describe how lovely my weekend was.