heart in hands, romantic vacations in Paris

An Ode to Romantic French Men

We are all well-versed in the notion that French women don’t get fat. They are also the epitome of chic and have the best, unfussiest hairstyles on earth. With so many articles and books written about the style, elegance, and chicness of

Couple look at Alexander 3rd Bridge and Eiffel Tower Paris France

Valentine’s Day and Romance in France

The French are renowned as a nation of romantics. From the amorous cartoon skunk Pépé le Pew with his overcooked accent to gorgeous actors like Jean Dujardin and Gregory Fitoussi, the romantic ideal often adopts a French accent. And, of

The sea during winter in Brittany

Winter in Brittany

Brittany tends to get overlooked in the winter. It only has one mountain peak, which is the mysterious and magical Menez Hom, but at 381 metres it certainly isn’t the place for a ski resort. Think of Brittany in winter

Eiffel tour in Paris

Thoughts on Returning to Paris

While engaged in a conversation discussing the recent terrorist events in Paris, I was asked if I was going to move forward with my plans to visit France later this year. The question caught me slightly off guard. Of course

Nat and Nin Bags Ii got in Paris (2)

Surviving the Soldes

While Papa Noël, Father Christmas and Santa Claus enjoy a well-needed rest after quite a busy holiday season, an even livelier season is taking hold throughout France: the winter sales! Shop and boutique windows everywhere are displaying the word SOLDES!

Paris at christmas

Memories of a French Christmas

I’m in Paris. It’s evening and the snow is falling. I’m standing before the huge open window in the parlour of the apartment on the Rue des Grands Augustins. I’m gazing at the white lights twinkling on the Eiffel Tower

Metrostation Paris sign

My First Trip to Paris

My first visit to Paris was a remarkable experience, which I will never forget. I booked the Dover-Calais ferry and drove with my wife from London in the cold Christmas weather. We intended to stay until the New Year in

Place Dauphine in the Snow Winter 2010

People Watching in the Place Dauphine, Paris

People watching is by far the most entertaining sport in Paris. Many participate in this sport while seated outdoors at a café. Others may partake in Parc Monceau or Jardin du Luxembourg. I take my people watching seriously. For me,

The Calanques

The joys of hiking in France

A combination of one too many pains au chocolat and a desire to explore the countryside around Aix en Provence led me to agree to join a superb group of hardy walkers based out of Aix called the International Hiking

Aix-en-Provence

The timeless beauty of Aix-en-Provence

The approach to the town never fails to stir. As you descend into the gentle valley in which this ancient regional capital lies, you sense that something special awaits, the sentinel presence of Mont St Victoire, which looms up over

St-Antonin-Noble-Val

My village: At home in St-Antonin

I always knew we’d chosen wisely when we bought our house in France, but now everyone can get a flavour of where we live. Our small town, St Antonin Noble Val, is the setting for the recently-released film, The Hundred-foot

Boat in St-Tropez

French Riviera Gem: A Snapshot of St-tropez

David Shoestring heads to the prestigious Riviera village to see how the other half live.  A visit to St-Tropez last year managed both to confound and to exceed expectations. The boats in the harbour may be somewhat grander than of old,

life in the village of Varen, Tarn-et-Garonne

My Village: Loving Life in Tarn-et-garonne

Val Johnstone talks fondly about life in her special corner of Tarn-et-Garonne. I have always been greedy, so can I write about our three villages. We live in the country, on top of the world at Mas del Sol, practically equidistant between

Pumpkin at French market

How to Be a Vegetarian in France

As a vegetarian in France, eating out can be difficult, to say the least. There must be vegetarian French people, but where are they? Perhaps they stay at home to eat. On many occasions I have been assured of a

A French school

How to be a teacher in France

The weekend that followed was relaxing because I knew at last I had a job that suited and although I was now close to the end of my overdraft, I’d just about be able to dig myself out of debt.

Clafoutis

First date with a Frenchman

First dates can be nerve-wracking enough, but cooking a three-course French dinner for a Frenchman can turn into a downright disaster – as Cathe learnt the hard way!

L'Hermione leaves Rochefort

The Hermione sets sail in Charente

On Sunday the 7th September 2014 under the scorching sun of an Indian Summer an estimated 50,000 people gathered in Rochefort on the banks of the River Charente. The long anticipated event that drew them there was the departure of

Why do we love Dijon Mustard?

I grew up on mustard and always had it in a simple vinaigrette with oil, vinegar, salt and pepper. The beauty was that the dressing could be made as mild or powerful as us children could stand. I remember that, as a kid,

French tips on pâté de campagne

The French are masters of using cheap cuts of meat which would otherwise be wasted. A traditional pâté de campagne needs good pork meat, fat and liver, and should be well seasoned with good sea salt and black pepper. Use any rough

©Jacqueline Davis, Ma Maison Parfaite

Settling into French life

Working as a property finder, people often ask Jacqueline how easy it is to settle into French life. She finds inspiration in Lynn, who took to her new life in France like a duck to water.

Chocolate Rocks

 I remember a meal I had at a Michelin restaurant in the center of France where, at the very end of the meal, they brought a small tray to the table filled with chocolates, tiny lemony madeleines, and miniature cookies.

Less Style Council, more My Council

As one of the newly elected municipal councillors in a small commune, what kinds of things do we discuss? From school buses, to bins, to verge cutting, to complaints about roads, noise and neighbours, life’s rich tapestry is represented. I

How to get fluent in Franglais

  Un footing, le timing, un people – these are all French words! Of course, they sound English but they have been stolen, or should I say adapted, and mean something completely different in French. Un footing is the word for

French Sauce Names Explained

Ever wondered what the difference is between ‘Béarnaise’ and ‘Périgordine’ sauces? Ever had to ask a waiter and then struggled to understand the complicated response?

Foie gras explained

A look at the different French foie gras products. Being unused to this product in the UK, the various forms of foie gras can be confusing at first.