I was able to snap this photo of the Eiffel Tower while we were on the open-air bus tour. Sometimes you just get lucky…
I said it. I said “Uncle.”
I have spent my day in a funk after visiting my orthopedist and coming to a decision about my arthritic knee. He told me that I have to say “uncle” before he’ll consider doing knee replacement.
I’ve been suffering from what I call marching band knees for many years — my knees are shot from too many years of abuse and too many years of being overweight. I had arthroscopic knee surgery in 2002 and my doctor told me I’d be begging him for a knee replacement in five years. Well, it’s been eleven years, and I have been determined not to wimp out. Everyone said that it would become clear — that I would know when it was time for a knee replacement.
Sometimes life’s lemons are sweetened with sugar.
I still don’t know about the knee replacement, but I do know that I was in a bad place today. And then along came this wonderful post from my friend, Alycia Nichols of Tablescapes at Table Twenty- One.
In February, when we were putting the final touches on our April 2013 trip to France, I posted about these cute placements I saw online. Then I dragged my traveling companions all over Paris trying to find these pink and green ones because my blogging buddy Alycia liked them. For those of you who don’t know Alycia, she is the kindest commenter out there in the blogging universe, and I wanted to thank her for her generosity with her time for other bloggers.
What she created with a silly quartet of plastic placements is truly amazing and I am thankful once again for her thoughtfulness. Sometimes people outside of the blogging community don’t understand the sense of community and friendship that develops in the blog world among people who may never meet each other in person, and my friendship with Alycia is one of those connections that surpasses reason.
So, if a knee replacement will get me back to Paris, and London, and Rome, and Venice, and Florence, and Berlin, and Prague, and Istanbul, I’d better buck up and do it. My travel bucket list goes on and on… and Alycia and I need more stuff for our tablescaping stashes!
Please visit Alycia’s beautiful tribute to Paris. You won’t be disappointed.
It’s kind of a pain to sit in the window seat during an international flight.
There are pros and cons to having an aisle seat, the most important being that you don’t have to wake up your seatmate or crawl over someone to get up to use the necessary. The negative, of course, of the aisle seat is that one is constantly being bumped all night — by other passengers and by the well-meaning flight attendants.
The window seat, on the other hand, has a little more room. It also tends to be cold and unless you’ve got your pillow configuration just right, it can be difficult to actually sleep. And then there’s the noise of the engines…
But if I didn’t sit in the window seat during all these years of flying, I would have missed many beautiful sights. There’s something magical about looking out the window while landing and imagining the new place you are about to encounter. That was the case this year as I encountered Nice through the window of the airplane.
The perfectly manicured and planned neighborhood. The foothills coming practically up next to the water. The majestic mountains in the background. And to think I would have missed this if I had been sitting in the aisle seat.
Of course, I owe it all to my traveling partner of thirty-some years. He lets me have the window and I love him for it.
Welcome back! Well, maybe you were already here, but I wasn’t.
We just returned from a two-week trip to France and I’ve been busy renegotiating life in the Windy City. Life does go on, doesn’t it, after one returns from a highly anticipated vacation?
I’ve been writing about our trip in detail on a vacation blog, France Frolic 2013, which is linked up in my sidebar. If you want all France, all the time, go there for the goods on our trip.
Meanwhile, over here on Got My Reservations, I’m going to be showcasing some photos from the trip that don’t really fit into the travelogue concept. This photo was taken with my point and shoot out the window as I saw our plane silhouetted against the fading sun.
As for me, it’s welcome to Reality 101 and I REALLY need to get to the gym!
Our friend Judy came back from her trip to France all agog about having seen these bells being manufactured for Notre Dame. The video is in French, but worth the view to see these beauties!
You can read about the bells in English here at the Paris Perfect Blog.
Since the new bells will be installed in time for Easter, I’ll be able to hear them on our trip to Paris in April. Yay!
I want to buy these placements.
And go shopping in Le Passage Jouffroy at Comptoir de Famille.
One thing I’ve learned since I’ve started
stalking following tablescaping blogs is that when I see a wonderful piece at a good price, I should grab it.
That was the case with this beautiful 60″ x 120″ Indian cotton tablecloth from April Cornell that I got at Home Goods for $24.99. The blue and green paisley with yellow accents was just the shot of spring I needed in my dining room — it’s unclear here in Chicagoland whether it’s winter or spring, so I voted for spring! The tablecloth has mitered corners with a sewn-in border and is stunning. Although it’s actually a traditional Indian paisley, to me it says country French and that was where I went with it.
I got to work gathering up pieces from around the house that would complement the colors of the bold tablecloth but not necessarily compete with it. I started with these very bold placemats. Nope. Too much.
I went back to my trusty pewter chargers from last week (sending a quick thank you to my mother-in-law’s memory) and layered my mom’s sweet china (Claridge from Four Crown China) with the World Market Indian cotton napkin. I like how the clear salad plate shows off the beautiful blue and grey stripes of the napkin.
Since every party at my house always starts with appetizers as people gather, I envisioned the dinner beginning with Basil – Lemon Sorbet as a palate cleanser. It would look beautiful in my inherited sorbet glasses. My mother-in-law loved these swirl dishes; does anyone know what the pattern is?
I grabbed the antique etched glass goblets and simple water glasses for beverages. The combination of complex and simple helps to balance the table.
For my centerpiece, I started with a crystal cake plate and put a large hurricane on it with the bright blue candle. Again, too much and too tall. Then I turned the cake plate upside down and put another of my glass plates as a candle bobeche. Perfect proportions.
As the pieces started to come together, I knew I didn’t even have to get fresh flowers for this table. The silk flowers and vines that I already had were perfect for the setting. The “white” flower ring from Partylite turned out to actually have a complementary yellow cast, and the ivy sets off the beauty of the Chinese and Delft teapots.
Finally, I knew that I had to have some pops of yellow to complement the yellow in the tablecloth, so I pulled out a few pieces of French Quimper pottery from my (mother-in-law’s) collection. They are not usable for eating as they are old and likely have lead in their glazes, but putting four small plates on stands completed the centerpiece.
After I arranged the fake ivy, I realized there was room for another set of candlesticks at each end, so on the table went more Quimper with votives set on top. (You’ve probably figured out by now that I hate getting wax on my tablecloths and almost always use bobeches and votives.)
If my table could talk, it would say, “Passez une bonne journée!”