Wednesday, 24 December 2008

All ready!.

I think we're set to go. Presents are wrapped and under the tree, we've got mistletoe and holly, fake snow-spray decorations on the windows, smoked salmon for entrée and a nice big turkey, Christmas pudding all made with brandy sauce waiting and jelly cakes just like Lily wanted from Henry Bear's Christmas. We've even got Nonno Piero here to share it all with us. The only thing we don't have is snow! But you can't have everything, I guess... Merry Christmas everyone!

Friday, 19 December 2008

The Purse-snatcher

I have to preface this by saying two things. Firstly, I have been going to the Monoprix in the centre of town every few days for over 18 months now and secondly, there are some very nice people who work there, a couple of whom, always take the time to ask how I am, how the kids are etc. Sadly there are also a couple of right bitches who work there. Obviously this post is about the latter....

So, I am paying and the cashier asks me if I have the 42 centimes. I do and start to get it out. Before handing it over I realize I've made a mistake and was about to give her 82 centimes (like many newish expats, I still have problems with numbers in the 80s and for me this extends to the 40s as well as they have 4s in them just like the 80s do!). So, I fish around and give her what I think is 42 centimes. Bear in mind, this all happened fast, its not like I took very long. But I was wrong. I'd given her two 50 centimes pieces. So I go to take it back to correct it and she reaches out to take my purse from me to do it herself as obviously, being a silly foreigner, I am useless.

Well, I tell you, those french lessons must have been paying off as for once my french came out quickly and (I think) accurately. "No", I said, moving my purse out of her reach and pointing to my change, "give that back to me please. I know the money well, I just made a mistake". And I handed back over my 42 centimes (fortunately correct this time!). Score one for me! Silly cow!

Wednesday, 17 December 2008


Just as it was starting to melt we got a lot of snow overnight!

Been waiting 18 months to take this photo!

Making snow angels on the Paquier

Sunday, 14 December 2008

A very Christmassy weekend

We braved the cold on Saturday morning to go to gymnastique. Expecting to see Père Noël, we were surprised to see a great parcours set up for all the kids. Lily and Jasper had a fantastic time but soon stopped when the man himself arrived with his basket of papillotes! After that we headed to the Saturday markets to buy our sapin. The rest of the afternoon was devoted to the decorations.

On Sunday we went to the Christmas markets at the Palais Impèrial which were terrific. There were Quebecois markets outside, with reindeer. And the kids each got a maple syrup lolly pop for good behaviour. Inside the hotel, they had really nice Christmas markets and a terrific toy train set up in the middle.

But to top it all, we stopped on the Paquier on the way home for a pony ride.

And later on, down at the cinéma, during Burn After Reading, that person sitting all alone in the third row from the front, who ate salt and vinegar chips all the way through the movie - well, that was me - and I enjoyed every minute of it!

papillotes - Christmas lollies wrapped in curly paper

Wednesday, 10 December 2008

More snow!

It's still snowing. Jasper and I popped out to get some groceries and we took the scenic route...


There's been lots of snow overnight and its still going. Hopefully we'll get out for some fun later but Lily has woken up with gastro - joy! In the meantime, here are a few photos taken from home...

Sunday, 7 December 2008

A sunny Sunday in Annecy

After lots of rain this week, we woke up to a beautiful day today. Leaving a pot of soup on the stove and David in bed, sleeping off the flu, the kids and I headed out for the morning. First stop was one of the two new merry-go-rounds in town for the Christmas festivities. The second is so very special, it deserves its own post soon. But this one caught Jasper's eye last week and he has been waiting for a while to "wump manège".

After a quick ride on the manège, we headed up to the ice-rink which is set up opposite the Courier shopping centre for a month. This year, thanks to all her rollerblading, Lily was quite confident going off on her own. Which meant I was able to put a little pair of strap-on patinettes on Jasper and hold his hand as we went around. After a while we borrowed someone's chair and Lily pushed him on that for a bit which left me free to have a little skate on my own. It was a heap of fun!

"wump manège" - manège is obviously merry-go-round. Wump took us a while to work out but generally is used for climb or get on so we think he's saying "monte".

The magic pudding

Its been a few years since I've made a Christmas pudding and this was the first year I've had two kids to "help" me. Still, we managed to get it together and everyone had a stir and made a wish. And I now have a rather unattractive-looking, but soon to be very tasty, pudding hanging above my fridge!

Friday, 5 December 2008

Bonne anniversaire Jacques!

Lily's favourite game for a long time now has been to play school. She has been known to get up at 7am on a weekend and want to start straight away - rather exhausting! Fortunately, Jasper is a keen participant and will eagerly do his travaille, have a sieste, and all else that school entails. But somewhere along the line he got a new name and whenever they play school he is known as Jacques.

And apparently it was his birthday the other day, judging from what Lily wrote on the blackboard...