Friday, October 24, 2014

Two Must See Small Paris Museums

I meant to post yesterday but all of the sudden it is a new day! Thought I would recap some of the travel photos from the visit of my in-laws. They had been to Paris before so we only did a few small museums. My two favorite small museums are Musée de l'Orangerie and Musée Rodin.

Musée de l'Orangerie's claim to fame are two huge oval rooms with gigantic paintings from Claude Monet's waterlily series. No photos allowed on the day we were there. There is also a nice selection of impressionist paintings by Renoir and a few other French painters. Plus a nice introduction to post impressionist works. If you don't have much time to spend in Paris this is the perfect museum to visit.

Photo from Wikipedia's website on Musée de l'Orangerie.

 If you have all day to devote to impressionist paintings then start early in the day at this museum and then walk across the Seine to Musée d'Orsay for lunch and spend the rest of the day viewing all the works there. You can buy a reduced ticket at Musée de l'Orangerie to visit both places on the same day. There is a nice restaurant on the top floor of d'Orsay with a small menu that is right off the main impressionist gallery...highly recommend!

The second small museum that is also a must see on my list is Musée Rodin. The Hotel Biron which houses indoor displays, was newly renovated since my last visit in January of 2013.

The Kiss

Surprisingly, a few paintings...



Three Van Goghs but I could only get a photo of one...lots of people in this very small space. 



The weather was perfect on our visit. The gardens are very nice with many sculptures throughout on display. Eiffel Tower in the distant background.


A bit more to share another day...


Thursday, October 23, 2014

Merry Paris Housewife

I'm getting back into my routine. I actually cooked dinner twice this week. I cannot walk far enough to burn all the calories I have consumed eating at restaurants lately! With that said...today my husband and I went out to eat for lunch at an Indian restaurant. At least we didn't get any dessert.

Plugging away on my Paris Flower quilt design. The hardest part...borders! I can't just leave it to a simple band of inspiration fabric! That's my project tonight while my husband works a late shift.

Finished adding the beard and mustache on my latest cross-stitched Santa. I wanted to note that when it comes to making the beard loops I use three strands doubled instead of one six-strand piece of floss. This gives me 6 strands going through the paper-punched holes instead of 12. If you make these kits...you know what I mean.


Day three of working on the latest stocking kit.


I'm getting close to finishing the satin stitched letters at the bottom of this wall hanging...which means I am close to starting all the ones at the top of the wall hanging.


I have to share the latest movie I watched yesterday.


I loved it!!! You must be a Shakespeare fan for this one. The movie takes the possible story that Edward de Vere, 17th Earl of Oxford, was the real writer of Shakespeare's works. It has a great Shakespearean plot...very smart movie. 

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

A Stitching Day

Day two of my current Bucilla stocking kit. More outline stitching...this time with black floss. A little bit of satin stitching for the bowling ball holes.


I worked on another letter for my wall hanging...slept on it and still hated the final result this morning! Night time lighting was the problem. There were just parts of it I didn't like. I ripped it out and started again.


My second shot was much better. I will finish the rest of the "S" tonight and be on track for a letter everyday this week. It's a good thing.


On Monday during my fitness walk I was deep in thought on quilting designs. I have a flower quilt I want to design using 2  1/2-inch strips. I have the fabric...but no pattern. The first five minutes of my walk I spotted this on a neighborhood building.


See the flowers? That was it. It kept my mind busy during my walk to ponder just how I would accomplish this block with 2  1/2-inch strips. I was too busy with chores to sit down at EQ7 until this morning and here is what I came up with. 

Paris Flower Block                          ...andsewforth 2014
Haven't figured out the rest of the quilt yet...maybe tomorrow.

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Getting Back to Normal...

in Paris.

 All our recent visitors are gone and no one is officially on the schedule to visit us for some time. 

The most important part of my usual routine is fitness walking along the Seine. My husband called me this morning to warn the rain was on the way...dark clouds in the west. I hustled out the door and did see a very threatening sky.


There is a new statue along my fitness route...fun!!! I feel just like this statue...fleshy and happy. Two weeks of eating lots of great food and drinking great wine will do that for you. I thought I was taking a picture of the statue's name the other day but it only had the artist's name in the photo I took, Niki de Sainte Phalle. 


See the Eiffel Tower peaking behind her hip? 

Too much to share and I must get back to household chores...cleaning, laundry, grocery shopping...

But I have started my Bucilla kits again. I am trying to satin stitch one letter a day...not my favorite thing.



I prepped another kit. Got all the felt pieces ironed and started embroidery stitching on the stocking base. I am going with the Bowling Santa stocking and ornaments kits. 


Thursday, October 16, 2014

Playing Tourist

More visitors have kept me out and about with little time to blog. Today we went to the quilt shop, Inès Le Boutique du Patchwork. My mother-in-law,  Judy, was shopping with me today...she is a quilter too. We have been to the Houston International Quilt Show together many times. She will get to go this year without me. I've been walking her legs off around Paris to get her in shape for her upcoming marathon shopping day in Houston. She found a few things to take home with her.


Here's a look at the stash she picked up...two meters of a French fabric with 7 coordinating fat quarters.


A set of 18 fat quarters from Australian quilt designer, Lynette Anderson.


I know you want to know the cost. The set of 18 fat quarters were $42 euros or about $54 U.S. The French fabrics were $63 euros or about $83 U.S.

I also found some adorable ornament kits also designed by Lynette Anderson.


I googled and found out there are a total of 12 designs in this series...guess I will have Judy look for the others at the Houston Quilt show. Lynette Anderson is listed as an exhibitor so should be do-able. The kits were $8.50 euros a piece or a little over $10 U.S. I sure hope they are a bit less expensive in Houston...it will be fun to compare prices.

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

More Moose in Paris

Seems to be a pattern here with my recent return to Paris...the moose have followed me. Maybe it's just the crowd that I hang out with. Our outing yesterday was the Hunting and Nature Museum. Right away I felt at home...this polar bear was the greeter for the museum.



This museum is a wonderful collection of taxidermy and nature inspired art. I don't normally care for antlers in my furniture but the French have a way of making it work! Notice the thistle on the seat...just a subtle reminder it's not a place for sitting in this museum.


There was a closet-sized room with owls lining the ceiling...pretty spooky stuff.


Again...the French find a way to make an antler mount beautiful...love the filigree detail on the stag head.


On this parrot chair was a dozing fox. I guess he didn't mind sitting on the thistle.


Everyone needs a conversation piece in their decor. This was a diorama of gorillas guarding a table setting with a human digestive system model in the middle...talk among yourselves on the possible meanings the artist was conveying. What do the two seahorses at the base infer?


Back to my comfort zone...brown bear with some cheetahs. I think that was rather a scrawny brown bear...obviously a distant cousin of an Alaskan Grizzly.


I did mention there was a moose...with  a lot of other heads to keep him company.


Guess I will have to bring Hubby here someday.

Monday, October 6, 2014

Moose In Paris

No....that is not the new name for my blog.

I actually saw two moose in Paris on my second day back in the city. Only managed to get a photo of one of them.


I am so happy to already have visitors to enjoy exploring the city. Yesterday we started out going to the Louvre but since it is one of the rare museums open on Mondays it was horribly crowded so we made a wise choice and decided to find a luncheon spot. It was not easy since it was already 2 p.m. and most restaurants close between 2:30 and 7 p.m. After asking for a recommendation at a wine bar (more about that place in a minute), we made our way to a fabulous spot call Loup which means wolf in French. I'm adding a link to their website,  Loup, just so I can find it again. Lots of meaty dishes. We started out with the house foie gras, duck liver. Served with toasted bread, confit of figs and confit of onions.


Then onto the main meal. My friend Mike got the beef tartare...you know...that raw food stuff. (Left side of the photo.) I did try a bite (I was on my second glass of wine so I was more adventurous than usual.) Not going to ever order beef tartare.


My other guest, Judy, had one of the specials with me, a roasted pork rib steak with roasted potatoes. Delicious! The sauce was so good...we had to get every drop of it.

I'm going in reverse order...before this lovely restaurant find we stopped for a refreshment at a wine bar, Les Fines Gueules. The intriguing old architecture is what pulled us in. The weather was a little gloomy so hard to get a great photo.


This building is just four years away from being 400 years old! We each had a glass of wine and a tapas of sliced ham (like prosciutto) and sliced sausage. Failed to get a photo...we ate very quickly. It was $18 euros for our little stop...very reasonable by Paris standards. I definitely need to take people here again!

Tiny interior...very hard to get a good photo. The three of us sat at the bar which left very little room for anyone else to move around in the restaurant. 


It was a great outing until we started walking home. What started out as a sprinkle turned into a downpour. That will teach me to leave the apartment without my umbrella...this is Paris after all.

One bit of needlework to share. On the flight to Paris I finished another cross stitch ornament, Joyeux Noel Santa, a French Santa...rather appropriate!