Arts and Crafts for Grown-Ups

Arts and Crafts for Grown-Ups

I have made several trips lately to Rougier & Plé, stocking up on clay, felt, plaster, paint and oh so many sequins. I am processing life through arts and crafts. Now I come home from a long day at work, set the mood with John Coltrane, Andrew Bird or Devon Graves and lose myself in messy [ ... ]

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Halloween Costumes (and Skeletons)

Halloween Costumes (and Skeletons)

When October rolls around each year, I am faced with the big decision of what costume to make for Halloween. But since moving to Paris, this choice has become more complicated. It’s not just me anymore; there are also the skeletons. I was in charge of decorations for the Halloween party two years ago.  I [ ... ]

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Accidental Moments

Accidental Moments

I walked out of the Louvre one night, and all of a sudden I was audience to a magnificent sunset over the Pyramid. I had been in a hurry to get home, but the glorious moment forced me to take a breath and be still. The Pyramid is currently the site of a neon installation by the artist Claude Lévêque. The dramatic [ ... ]

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Louvre Photo Safari: Plants and Animals

Louvre Photo Safari: Plants and Animals

This is part of Louvre Photo Safaris, a series that focuses on details found in Louvre artworks around various themes, with the aim of looking at everything differently. The Louvre recently reopened a refurbished decorative arts section called "From Louis XIV to Louis XVI". After having heard rave reviews since [ ... ]

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After the Rain

After the Rain

It rained the other day, and I could feel October coming. Paris in autumn is so moody, almost sinister, and I love it. That feeling right after a rainstorm, when the air is still charged and everything is so vivid, that’s where I am now. This transition is intense, but good. Here’s a glimpse at Paris after the rain, on a walk I took [ ... ]

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Dreams of Audio Tours

Dreams of Audio Tours

I had a dream last night where Fleur Pellerin, France’s new Minister of Culture and Communication, told me to make audio content for museums during my free time (I think my thesis has not entirely left my system yet). This got me thinking. I firmly believe that there is more than one way to appreciate museums, and how cool [ ... ]

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'The Panic Attack' (Sazerac and Cider)

'The Panic Attack' (Sazerac and Cider)

Ladies and Gentlemen, my thesis is done! In honor of finishing my Master's degree, I present to you The Panic Attack! One night, after a particularly rough night working on my thesis, I decided to make myself a cocktail treat. Finding only rye and cider in my kitchen, a quick Google search led me to a recipe for a [ ... ]

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San Gimignano

San Gimignano

(As I finish up my thesis this month, this blog will be temporarily transformed into Garlands in Florence with posts about summer in Italy) We were going to San Gimignano for the day. We were right by the train station in Florence, and this clueless young couple, obviously in town just for the day, came up to us, and [ ... ]

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Giardini di Boboli

Giardini di Boboli

(As I finish up my thesis this month, this blog will be temporarily transformed into Garlands in Florence with posts about summer in Italy) I had to wake up early for a drawing class field trip. We went into Florence to the Boboli Gardens, the Medici’s massive formal gardens behind the Pitti Palace. They were lovely [ ... ]

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Ferragosto a Siena

Ferragosto a Siena

(As I finish up my thesis this month, this blog will be temporarily transformed into Garlands in Florence with posts about summer in Italy) As August 15 is Ferragosto, a holiday in Italy, I was worried that everything would be closed . But then I read that the Palio race was going to take place tomorrow in Siena [ ... ]

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Cortona

Cortona

(As I finish up my thesis this month, this blog will be temporarily transformed into Garlands in Florence with posts about summer in Italy) Inspired by reading Under the Tuscan Sun, I decided to spend a weekend by myself in Cortona, a hilltop Tuscan town. I would wander little streets, reflect on life [ ... ]

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Two Medici Villas

Two Medici Villas

(As I finish up my thesis this month, this blog will be temporarily transformed into Garlands in Florence with posts about summer in Italy) My drawing class took its first field trip; we went to two nearby Medici villas. At the first villa, the Villa Medici di Castello, we sat out in the gardens and drew whatever we [ ... ]

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Cinque Terre

Cinque Terre

(As I finish up my thesis this month, this blog will be temporarily transformed into Garlands in Florence with posts about summer in Italy) Today was a trip to Cinque Terre. Sandwich fixings were laid out in the Villa dinging room for us to make our lunches. Freshly picked lettuce and tomatoes, local olive oil [ ... ]

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Arrival at the Villa

Arrival at the Villa

(As I finish up my thesis this month, this blog will be temporarily transformed into Garlands in Florence with posts about summer in Italy) Today has been a dream, a wisp. The descent into Florence was breathtaking. As I came out of the small plane directly onto the tarmac, the air smelled so [ ... ]

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Exhibition: Delacroix and Shakespeare

Exhibition: Delacroix and Shakespeare

The Musée Delacroix is currently putting on an itsy-bitsy exhibition about how the artist was inspired by Shakespeare. The title, Eugène Delacroix, the most legitimate of Shakespeare’s sons, is a tad ambitious for an exhibition basically composed of about twenty lithographs. But this is Paris, so let there be grandeur [ ... ]

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The Artsy Squares of Saint-Germain-des-Prés

The Artsy Squares of Saint-Germain-des-Prés

Église Saint-Germain-des-Prés is easily one of my favorite churches in Paris. It feels ancient; a reminder of the past in the midst of contemporary Parisian life. The structure is surrounded by two little squares, each tucked in against the church and chock-full of art. These modest parks have their own distinct character [ ... ]

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Celebrating With Choux

Celebrating With Choux

July 20 is Marina Day. In France, every day of the year has a saint's name associated with it. If you share the name of one of the saints, that is your name day. Every year since I started studying French and learned that this was a thing, I have treated July 20 (the fête of Sainte Marina) as a mini-birthday party, a gala of 'treat yo self', a celebration of my delightful self.

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Happy Place: Garden of the Musée Delacroix

Happy Place: Garden of the Musée Delacroix

This is part of Happy Places, a series about making the time to have experiences that bring you joy, but can be hard to justify with a busy schedule. The Musée Delacroix is so small that it is hard for me to justify return visits. If I am a Delacroix mood, I’ll make my way to the Louvre’s collection. But [ ... ]

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Kicking and Biting and Screaming!

Kicking and Biting and Screaming!

This is what my thesis is teaching me: Life is in this moment. I am so tempted to say that life will start again when I turn in this massive document. That I will literally never have a reason to be stressed ever again. But to think that this moment a waiting period for ‘real life’ is a dangerous [ ... ]

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The Best Burger in Paris

The Best Burger in Paris

I realize this might be my most controversial post to date, but here goes. There have been a lot of claims lately about the best burger in Paris, as the burger scene is exploding in the city. There are arguments for Blendle Camion Qui FumeBig Fernand, blah blah blah. The truth is, there is [ ... ]

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