Sunday, May 31, 2015

Instilling some patriotism

Besides trying to encourage my kids to speak English well, I also try to help them appreciate the American side of their culture. To this end, we attended the Memorial Day ceremony at the Aisne-Marne cemetery this year, in Belleau, France. This is where the Battle of Belleau Wood took place, where the Marines made a name for themselves during World War I.

It's way out in the country.

The boys are learning a lot about WWI in school since it's the centennial, and we take advantage of the museums and cemeteries in our area to help them learn more. The extremely knowledgeable curator of this cemetery is retiring this year. Hopefully his replacement will be just as enthusiastic.

US Marines.

Proof I was there, too. And we found the Missouri flag.

This monster always has this devious expression on his face.
It was French Mothers' Day, so Benjamin offered me a poppy.

Thursday, May 28, 2015

Country kids in France go on field trips to

Paris. I accompanied Noah's class on the field trip to Paris yesterday. They took all the schools, from 3-year-old preschool to 5th grade. We started with the Quai Branly Museum, a museum dedicated to objects from Africa, Oceania, the Americas, and Asia. With Noah's class, we had a guided visit about masks, which they have been studying in school.
After our visit, we met up with the other classes and had a picnic near the Eiffel Tower.
Then we went up to the second floor of the Eiffel Tower... via the stairs. The last time I did that, I was 19 years old. It was a heck of a lot easier then, and when I wasn't trying to keep up with a group of 7-year-olds! I didn't see Benjamin much, but managed to snap a quick picture of him at the top, too. Noah wants to know when we are going back!

Wednesday, May 20, 2015


We finally started getting some nice weather around here.
Benjamin got his third and final cast; shorter than the first two.

Three mechanics at work, trying to find the hole in my 20-year-old car's muffler. 
Gala loves to enjoy the yard.

Friday, May 15, 2015

Spring Means...

time to work in the yard!

Noah and Benjamin (broken arm and all) are helping Frédéric trim the hedge behind the house. Remind us to buy a house with a much smaller yard and no hedges next time.

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Happy Birthday to Frédéric

We celebrated Frédéric's birthday yesterday. We don't have that many candles, so we went with "tens" and "ones" instead.

And to more than one person's surprise, *I* made the cake, not Frédéric or Noah. I offered to let Noah make it, but he declined. We went for a simpler version of his favorite cake - this year's was pound cake with holy-COW-those-are-expensive strawberries and homemade whipped cream (which is MUCH easier to make since his cousins gave him a stand mixer two years ago).

And to Frédéric's surprise, we finally let him join the 21st century with a smartphone. He looked like a kid at Christmas, so I think it's safe to say he likes it. His cell phone was probably at least 7 or 8 years old, and was just that, a phone only.

Monday, May 4, 2015

New Cast

Benjamin got a new cast today. In theory, he's keeping this one until early June.

As the nurse started to put the blue resin on, I said, "Oh, and you wanted pink..."

He didn't think that was as funny as I did.

He likes this one a lot better, because it's much lighter than the plaster cast.

Also, his clothes are almost always color coordinated with it.

Saturday, May 2, 2015

Kind of like Harry Potter

Except he sleeps under his bed instead of under the stairs. And he does it of his own volition.