Tuesday, July 9, 2013


I've got jury duty tomorrow and it doesn't exactly feel like a party in the U.S.A. Much has happened since last month, not all of it good unfortunately. My uncle passed away and my mom, sister and I have been going back and forth to my cousins house to offer support and food. It's been difficult considering how much time we spent with them but at least our family is large and I'm very close knit with all of my cousins. 
This was taken on Father's Day and the last time I saw my uncle.
Right after this happened, my sister turned 19 and we celebrated with a tea party at our house for some of her girl friends. Since my mom was fielding calls all day, I made tea sandwiches, brewed tea, and baked chocolate peanut butter birthday cake. My mom also made scones and we had strawberries from the farmers market. For such skinny girls, they managed to eat almost everything. I was very impressed. 
We also went to an outdoor screening of Beetlejuice and I got to play with a prop.
I made my first beach trip of the summer with Megan and Anna in Santa Monica.
Last week, my mom, Anna and I made a little trip to the Venice beach canals. It was overcast but muggy and a fun adventure. 
Last Sunday was my uncle's funeral so my dad came home from Virginia and some other family friends came in from SF. The service was in Palos Verde and it was unusually warm and sunny so I almost passed out. Slightly embarrassing but my cousin Gracie fanned me while I sat in the shade. Afterwards everyone went to my aunts for the reception and it eventually turned into cousin beer pong and boba fetching. 
Anna and I began a month pass to core power yoga and have been every day in hopes of gaining abs or toned arms. 
I spent the 4th at Greg's house during the day, 
went home to wrap up toffee bars and then went to Megan's to watch fire works on her front lawn. 
My moms birthday was the 5th so we went to marina del Rey for breakfast at Le Pain and walked on the boardwalk. 
I have to wake up early and skip work to be at the courthouse by 9:30 in the morning tomorrow. UGH. Please cross your fingers I won't be chosen and will not have to return Thursday! At least there's wifi, marukai/Starbucks for lunch and an excuse to read the book I just got from the library.
I'm jealous of Katey's trip to Paris, I want to go somewhere so badly!! Perhaps next summer, post graduation I'll get out of this country or city or state and get a little vacation!
Happy July all!

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Katey's Family in France Part Five: Reflections on French Onion Soup and the Moveable Feast

This is likely my last post devoted entirely to this trip, barring the occurrence of anything particularly eventful on the way to the airport or on the flight home. It's been a strong finish to my dad's and my time in Paris (my mom will be staying on with one of our friends for a few days).

Yesterday we took a fairly leisurely morning before heading over to the Holocaust Memorial/Museum in the Marais. You are not allowed to take photos, so I do not have any to share, but I highly recommend it. I had been last year but did not get to spend much time in the main exhibit on the bottom floor due to a mix up in which I at first did not notice the sign telling me to go downstairs (laugh, if you must). Anyway, I got to spend quite a bit of time down there this year, and it is by far one of my favorite museums. If you have any interest in history, WWII, or the French, it's worth a visit. If you speak French, it's all the better because you can watch the videos and understand them; although my dad seems to think he got the gist of them regardless (I'm skeptical).

After our trip there, we walked over to the Île Saint-Louis to eat at the little restaurant where my Aunt Patty and Uncle Tim would by me ice cream from the window when we stayed on the island when I was 13. I also had dinner there with friends last year, so I could vouch for the food as well as the ice cream.

I forgot to mention in my last post that I had French onion soup at the restaurant in Montmartre. I meant to write about how it was almost as good as my dearest friend Laura's French onion soup. To be honest, it might have been a little bit better (no offense, Laura). But this is also relevant here, because I ordered French onion soup at Pom' Cannelle on the Île Saint-Louis as well. And it was even better! Ok, I actually knew that in advance though because I ordered it last year. Despite being a little heavy on cheese, it's excellent. Laura, we'll have to come to Paris one day and uncover their French onion soup-making ways.

The soup was delicious, but the ice cream did not disappoint either. Just as good as when I was 13!

(Gail is really into action shots these days)

That evening we again met up with Cathy and John for dinner. I walked through the Place Dauphine earlier that day and took inventory of some available restaurants. Then I checked out what people had said about them on the internet, which led me to choose Ma Salle à Manger. It was an excellent choice if I do say so myself. It's a little Basque restaurant, and I must say that I have a new affinity for Basque food and will be in search of a Basque restaurant in Seattle. Also, our waiter was super nice and funny, and it was all around a very pleasant experience. 

Then we went on one of those little boat cruises on the Seine. It was actually quite a nice way to end the evening!

Plus it was a beautiful way to see the sunset!

This morning we decided to go on one of those hop on/hop off tours. Now, normally I'm skeptical of these sorts of things, particularly after my aunt and uncle and I tried to do one when we were here in 2004 but then couldn't figure out how to hop back on after we "hopped off." But this actually wasn't bad. It was kind of a nice last look at the city, and it's a relaxing way to do it. Also, it was really nice out this morning and there weren't too many people on the bus. For those of us who choose to listen to the commentary, it's a nice history lesson (or a refresher for those of us who already know a fair bit of French history and simply like to be able to quiz our friends and family after tours like this), and for everyone, it's a nice way to get to take pictures like this:

I could also see what I suspect is preparation for the Tour de France:

Afterward we had lunch at a place in the Latin Quarter with some charming waiters, and I got mussels!

It was lovely and very close to Shakespeare and Company, which we perused after lunch.

Then we went for a walk, which led us to the Luxembourg Gardens, where we stopped for coffee and crêpes (which were a bit underwhelming but still a nice dessert). 

After heading back to the apartment to get my dad and I packed, we met up with Cathy and John again for our last dinner all together. We found a nice little place where I had steak and then a coeur coulant au chocolat for dessert. It was wonderful. What a pleasant end to our stay.

The three who depart demain matin! 
These two will stay to drink more wine for the next week.
All in all, a lovely trip. It will be nice to be home, but I'll certainly miss Paris. À la prochaine, Paris!


“If you are lucky enough to have lived in Paris as a young man, then wherever you go for the rest of your life, it stays with you, for Paris is a moveable feast.” 
― Ernest HemingwayA Moveable Feast