Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Elsève Volume Non-Stop

Halliday and I have been getting a lot of mileage (giggles) out of a new shampoo that we are carrying at basicfrench. Lauded for it's long-lasting volume enhancing potential by a myriad of well-groomed lyonnais, Elsève Volume Non-Stop, is truly our new shampoo of choice.

Monday, January 18, 2010

The Halliday Girls!

I just found this picture of two of the four amazing Halliday sisters, my great aunt Bobbie (Elisabeth Halliday Van Nortwick) and my grandmother Mimi, (Margaret Halliday Neiley) aka Mother Nature.

Bobbie and Mimi were my role models. They were the most elegant and hilarious women I have ever known. Always dressed to the nines, relaxed in real Abercrombie and Fitch, quintessential ladies, polished at Miss Porters, raised between New York , Yonkers (the then countryside of Manhattan) and Hyannis Port, they were the funniest pair ever.

Friday, January 15, 2010

Fashion Week : Paris Chic ?

It's that time of year again. Time to hop on the TGV and spend a day (in my case,) running around Maison et Objet, the French gift and housewares show. It's also fashion week, which means all the hipsters from all over the planet will descend on Paris. I usually find Paris itself and the people who live there more inspiring than the gift show. And quite frankly, I don't think this video by H & M is all that chic. I much prefer the Sartorialist.

Monday, January 11, 2010

Eric Rohmer, Claire's Knee and other stuff

Eric Rohmer in 1985. Photograph: EPA

I think that when I discovered Eric Rohmer in my teens, I felt I had truly arrived. My French was not too great at that time, but I fell deeply in love with the mood of his movies, the light, the scenery and the realistic promise of unrequited, youthful love.

Anyway, Eric Rohmer died today and here is a bit of history about him from "The Guardian" and the "Associated Press" in case you want to become a posthumous fan. Eric Rohmer marathon weekend, ne c'est pas?

And then there's Claire's knee (le Genou de Claire) of course...

Sunday, January 10, 2010

The Party & French Boys Love Fashion Too!

Living with two teenage girls, I am blessed each week with full-on fashion exposure, beginning Monday mornings at 6:15 when my 15 year old gets up for school. The fun really kicks in on weekends with multiple wardrobe changes, interspersed with moments of great despair, tears, more wardrobe changes, last minute loads of laundry and mascara touch ups. The fashion apex is Sunday evening at about 10:23 when Monday morning's outfit is oh so carefully selected and strewn on the settee in our hallway.

I thought this was a teenage girl thing, until I went to a birthday party for our fabulous friend Odyssey, fondly known (to me at least) as "the Greek." Boys, boys, boys, just love their clothes and shoes and even have a favorite shampoo, which gives them that lift, that bounce, that brushed forward sloppy yet trimmed hair look that the French boys are sporting these days.

La Croix Rousse is Back!!

I used to hang out a lot in La Croix Rousse, but for various reasons which I won't elaborate on here, I got out of the habit. But slowly and surely, I am rediscovering this unpretentious and genuine neighborhood that I fell for a few years ago. Today, I am on my way to my dear friend Odyssey's birthday party.

Saturday, January 09, 2010

My Favorite Sacred Place and Funny Teenage Boys

My neighborhood is the most conservative Catholic neighborhood in Lyon. Definitely not branché (hip) at all. I love it though because it has this really calm and sacred feel to it, filled with old spirits and history. It also has the most beautiful people, bcbg (bon chic bon genre) but in a parochially refined way.

Friday, January 08, 2010

Monoprix and My New Flip Video

I just bought a new flip video and I am so excited, so I am going to be annoying everyone with my new videoability or lack thereof. Hallie and I are taking off to do a little shopping at our favorite store, Monoprix, before we get inundated with snow.

Waiting for the Snow

Tuesday, January 05, 2010

Chez Nous

Our house, is a veryveryvery old house, with 2 dogs in the yard. (Okay, I'll stop. I am annoying myself too.)

Grace Bonney, most celebrated design blogger and charming lovely person, of whom I'm obviously a great fan, included our country house in les monts du lyonnais in the Sneak Peeks section of her website. I realize that I forgot to mention this months ago, when I included the feature of our Lyon apartment.

Since I truly need to learn to be more self-promotional in this century, to attain a modicum of recognition, I thought I would provide the link. Blahblah blah. Someday, this will come naturally.

But here's the thing. I have a new and exciting project on the urban palace that I am hoping beyond all hope to renovate. So stay tuned. I am sure to publish it in the next century.

Monday, January 04, 2010

Encore de la Neige

This morning we woke up and Lyon was covered in snow.
It was like magic.
Our apartment looks out on a square and all the terracotta rooftops of our neighborhood. Snow-covered. We are on the top floor so we see everything. The girls reluctantly put on hats and scarves and all the forgotten Winter gear. Hallie left for school at 7 and it was still pitch black. The sun came up before Abbie took off at 8, but barely. All the buses were canceled and many teachers did not make it to work at all. This is not a city used to snow, that's for sure.

Tonight, it snowed again and the streets were quiet and slushy. My dream would be for it all to disappear overnight, for the streets to
be clean and dry when I look out my window tomorrow morning — more overnight magic please.

Friday, January 01, 2010

Home is Where We Are...

It's the New Year. Bonne Année.

We just got back last night from 19 days in the states. I slept so well. Complex dreams, but a feeling of safety engulfed me. I was sleeping in my own little bed with my own 100% cotton sheets under my own little duvet in my eclectically designed room surrounded by all the quirky things that define me, with my 2 lovely daughters snuggled in their own little room under their own little duvets. Truly snug in our beds. Home.

I keep asking myself where I live? Where do I call home? All those who want me back in the states call the U.S. my home, but I realized last night, as I realize every time that I come back to France, that though while not perfect, France has become, for at least as long as I can see into the future, my home, the place where I feel most like myself, where I feel safe and clean and clear in my head.