Tuesday, August 23, 2011

a winner & i'm outta here

The winner of a copy of Love in a Warm Climate is number 7, Megan (as picked by random.org). Congratulations Megan, and thank you to everyone who entered. ...............................................................................................................
It's been six months coming... six months since The Husband and I purchased the plane tickets (and heaven knows, a lot of life has happened in the past six months). Tomorrow, The Husband and I are going to Texas, and I will be on a mission to find a little cowboy hat and red boots to bring home to Fifty.  
Can I get a yee-haw?!
See y'all in the fall. 

Sunday, August 21, 2011

all the rest of la fête

{teeny tiny carnival}

Being totally mature, I called it a night about 11pm on Brazil Day. The Husband was not so mature. He and Gatz (because of course Gatz was staying with us) bumbled in at 4am. Now here's a question for you; do you think they came in quietly and went straight to bed? Or do you think they decided to make a little mischief outside Honey Jr's house using drunken whisper voices? (which we all know is just shouting in a breathy voice).

Of course it was drunken whisper mischief. You know it was.

Despite the 4am disturbance, I woke up bright eyed and bushy tailed a little after 7, went outside with my special, write on glass pen, and wrote all sorts of fun things all over the windows of Gatz's car. A little payback for drunken whisper mischief (sometimes I'm not so mature).

{Mrs Cousin and Honey Jr's girlfriend warming up}

Sunday afternoon of la fête was spent playing a pétanque tournament behind La Petite Notre Dame (pétanque is like boules). I arrived a little late (after a scandalous conversation with Grandma Honey about the Resistance and Collaborators in Le Petit Village... I'm sure the Nazi Ghost Zombies' ears were burning) so I missed out on the playing... 

{The Cousin, Honey Jr, Honey's Honey, and an a**}

... but The Cousin, Honey Jr and Honey Jr's girlfriend (who I think I'll call Honey's Honey... what do you think?) played... and that other guy on the right. I'm not too sure who he is (although on Brazil Day I caught him peeing on La Petite Notre Dame and give him a good scolding... what an a**... and no, he's not a Le Petit Villager). 

{I'm cool like that}
And for no particular reason other than ridiculous cuteness, here's The Cousin's baby (who is named after an X-Men character... I'm not joking). I will never be as cool as this baby, ever. Notice how his t-shirt matches his father's shorts in the other photo?

ridiculous cuteness.


P.S. don't forget to enter my book giveaway here   

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Brazil Day

What does Brazil have to do with Le Petit Village? Nothing. Nothing is the answer. Until now. Every year like most villages in France, Le Petit Village has a weekend festival... it's full of wholesome carnival fun, loads of ridiculously inexpensive champagne (does anyone remember the dragged through the hedges incident from last year?) and a terrible band to dance to. Oh and of course there are fireworks too.

(A little sidebar about the fireworks... this year they were shot off at the bottom of the hill in front of my house, and as we sat on the grass at the top of the hill, the fireworks came down directly over our heads because they were so close. We had to look straight up to see them and it looked like umbrellas made of fireworks. It was magical. I oohed and awed like a small a child. I seriously did. I haven't felt that full of magic and glee since my mother surprised me with a trip to see a live showing of The Magic Garden when I was six. Which was the best day ever by the way. Thanks Mom).

Anyway, back to the Brazilian connection...

A few months ago, Honey Jr and Brother-in-Law decided that 1) there weren't enough parties in Le Petit Village and 2) the parties weren't good enough, so they did what any sensible people would do, they formed a committee for parties (now there already is a party committee in the village but it is a little fogey like and in need of a shakeup). So not only did they form an official committee, but they decided that they were going to take over one whole day of la fête weekend and make it Brazil Day... or journee de Brésil.

{nice try}
Brazil Day kicked off on Saturday morning with a 10am football tournament played in front of Le Petit Bar. That's The Cousin in white and Honey Jr in blue playing in the large sandbox erected by Brother-in-Law. Looks like they're playing pretty good doesn't it? Well not good enough. Their team didn't make it to the finals, but The Husband's did. Then he lost but that was OK. Prize for second place was a bottle of champagne (much better than the first prize of free lunch at Le Petit Bar). 

Oh, and do you see that sand? It was more like orange clay and we all spent a couple days after with orange feet. We looked like oompaloompas who got their toes caught in the fake tanning jar. 

After the football tournament, there was a volleyball one. Baby Cousin and Bubble won it. First prize for that one was a bottle of champagne, and I stole it. 


See that's me stealing the champagne alongside Bubble who actually won it. And if you look closely, you'll see my green and yellow manicure in honor of Brazil Day (I can be festive when I need to be). 

We had a DJ at Brazil Day too. There was a special box erected just for him (by Brother-in-Law of course... he's very handy that one). It sat to the left of the entry to Le Petit Bar. There was another box set up to the right that sat empty. Well it sat empty until I decided to turn it into my very own V.I.P. box for the day. You want to know what it was supposed to be? It was supposed to be a cocktail bar (as Honey Jr had previously arranged with The Parisian). But do you think that The Parisian made one single cocktail let alone had stock on hand to make a Caipirinha?


No he did not.


P.S. And check this out... Le Petit Bar ran out of whiskey... surprise surprise... so The Cousin popped over to l'épicerie, bought a bottle, and brought it over. And it was €4 cheaper too.

P.P.S. Don't forget to enter my book giveaway here 

love in a warm climate

It's a nice title, isn't it? And for me, it's nicer, more familiar even, because that love and warm climate, takes place right here in the south of France, my stomping grounds (sure it's set in the Languedoc, and not Provence, but whatever). And get this... the subtitle is, A Novel about the French Art of Love... c'est très romantique, no?

Gibson Square Books has kindly asked me to read Love in a Warm Climate, written by Helena Frith Powell, and tell you all about it. And even better, give away a copy to a lucky one of you.

"What do you do if you find a bra in your husband's luggage that isn't yours - or even his? This is the dilemma facing Sophie Reed shortly after she moves to France..." - Love in a Warm Climate

This is chick lit at it's finest. It's easy breezy, full of that sort of delicious escapism that we all wish we could swim in... serious fairy tale stuff like a sexy and charming wealthy Frenchman, a gorgeous movie star, St Tropez, Champagne, Pretty Woman style shopping excursions, and your very own vineyard... you know the stuff. That stuff that will never ever happen, not in a million billion years, but you still soak up every word and dream.

My soaking up of every word was primarily done on the bean bag on my terrace; glass of Rosé in hand as the sun set. And honestly, Love in a Warm Climate was lovely company, I truly enjoyed it, in all of it's fluffy fun glory. It's like a glass of pink bubbly.

And now for the giveaway... to enter;

1. You must be a follower of Le Petit Village, so leave a comment and let me know that you are (and for kicks if you want, let me know what city in the world, you would love to be in love in).

For extra entries, you can do any or all of the following (leaving separate comments for each)

1. 'Like' me on Facebook (by clicking the Facebook icon on the right)

2. Follow me on Twitter (by clicking the twitter icon on the right)

3. Tweet this giveaway, and add @SaraLouLePetit to your tweet (so I can thank you)

So that's that... four chances to win, four separate comments.

Giveaway closes Monday, 22nd August, 12:00am EST 

(that's 5am Tuesday if you're in the UK, and 6am Tuesday for you Frenchies)

Winner will be announced Tuesday the 23rd. 



Friday, August 12, 2011

A Testament to my Texas family in France


There I was at Aidan's on Saturday afternoon... wondering how I ended up with a nipple cream stain on the hem of my new dress (this is the type thing that could only happen to me. I'm a big ol'  M E double S) wearing my fab new finger accessory, aka doll jeans, and drinking my beer out of a mason jar. Because that's just me... nipple cream stains, doll jean finger gloves, and mason jar beers. I bet you really want me to come over don't you?

(You know I'm kidding about the doll jean finger gloves right? Not about me wearing them, clearly I was, but that they are my fab accessory. I promise, they are not. Even Punky Brewster disciples like me have limits).

(And if you are wondering what on earth I, a never had a baby lady, was doing with nipple cream, apparently it is very good for dry heels. Well according to someone else anyway. I'm not going to name names, but her name does start with the letter, 'A').

We're going to do this post in snippets. Little snippets of the weekend instead of one cohesive tale. I'm not feeling very cohesive this morning (I'm trying to cut back on the coffee). Apologies.

{puppy love}

This is how The Husband woke up at Aidan's Saturday morning... with sweet puppy kisses from Clementine. Fifty will never see this photo. Ever. We don't need him on the ledge of our roof again. 

When we're at Aidan's we kind of just dig in and become part of the family. Which is nice, since my family are all so far away. Sure I have The Husband's family, but they don't get me (my intermediate French is to blame... I think). The Husband becomes 'The Manny' and plays with the kids and Aidan and I do things like go to the grocery store and cook together (mostly Aidan cooks, I kinda hangout, drink beer out of mason jars, paint her daughter's toe nails yellow, and peel like, one shrimp).

We hang out in our bikinis all day. Something I haven't done since my Texas days. But as I've said before, Aidan's house is like the Texas Embassy. We say y'all and dude a lot. The Husband and Aidan's husband have a ping-pong tournament (I'm not joking, they make it into an actual tournament... dorks) and we make jalapeños stuffed with cream cheese wrapped in bacon. The best, most delicious, treat that I used to eat all the time and completely forget about after the six years in Dublin and almost two here (two years at the end of September... can you believe it?! I can't).

And we laugh at Aidan's youngest (he's not quite three) when he comes running out onto the terrace naked as a jay bird, declaring that it is bath time. Which is so funny, because I think that if there was an incredible shrinking machine, and you put The Husband in it, he would come out and be Aidan's youngest, and so when he did his little naked as a jay bird bath time appearance, it only confirmed my theory. (This is one of those things that I'm going to get in trouble for later.)

{my Texas family in France... and The Husband too}

And we go to the beach too. There we are... A bunch of Texans hanging out on a beach in the south of France (with The Husband of course). Not on holiday. Just a normal Sunday on the Mediterranean... wondering how we all got here, wishing we had a tall boy in a coozy, but thinking about how very lucky we are. Nipple cream stains and all.

It's pretty cool y'all.


P.S. you can read Aidan's take on all this here 

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

my date with Aidan

A couple of Fridays ago, I went out on a date with Aidan (The Husband, Honey Jr and a few others were there too, but I didn't really care about that). I was so excited for my date with a fellow Texan, and for getting out of of Le Petit Village for the night, that I took photos of potential outfits and sent them to my date for her approval (re: I'm a big dork).

{please excuse the smudges on the mirror, Fifty likes to look at himself and when he does, he smudges}

We went with the black.

Our date night was dinner at Sun 7 Beach in Montpellier, a restaurant on the beach that came with a DJ spinning ridiculously loud house music. You know that saying, "if it's too loud, you're too old?" Yeah, it turns out that's true.

But we didn't let all that loud bass pumping stop our gabfest, no sir-ee bob, we sure didn't. And even though we were sitting at a table having dinner with six other people, I only had eyes for Aidan. Or more precisely, ears, I only had ears for Aidan, as we sat and talked, talked, and talked some more. All that slight Texas twanged English was heaven. Heaven I tell you. Best date I've had in ages (apologies to The Husband). We even shared dorado like a real couple, it was baked in rock salt. And then we ogled the waiter who scraped all the rock salt off the dorado together, unlike a real couple.

See him, that's the cute waiter. He's scraping the salt off the fish. 
(for the record, I'm not the one who took the photo

And after dinner we shared a Mojito too.

{shiny happy people}

Don't we look happy? We were. But like most happy occasions it felt like we were in a time warp moving fast forward and before we knew it, it was time to go. Which was kind of sad. But, The Husband and I were spending the whole weekend at Aidan's with her and her family, so it wasn't too, too sad. 

And then when our date was over, and we were headed back to Aidan's, the coolest, most bizarre thing happened... The Husband (who was our lovely driver for the evening) suddenly interrupted our ongoing gabfest and said, "I feel like there are police up ahead." Aidan and I stopped talking and gave him a look that said, "huh?", but then we went around a roundabout and sure enough, there they were; like six cops standing outside their cars (I'm sure waiting for people who don't have lovely drivers). 

So it turns out that sensing when there are police near, is The Husband's superpower. Surely that will come in handy should I ever want to pursue a life of crime, or become an evil villain of some sort. 

Good to know.


P.S. weekend at Aidan's coming soon... 

Monday, August 8, 2011


above: Le Petit Village on a normal Sunday

below: Le Petit Village on a brocante Sunday


Saturday, August 6, 2011


{this photo has nothing to do with this post whatsoever}

You know how Le Petit Village only has one épicerie (no boulangerie, no boucherie, no patisserie, just one épicerie)? Well that one épicerie has been closed since June 1st. June 1st! Can you believe it? Now it's not like the thing was heavily stocked anyway, but it was there and good to pick up your baguette or if you ran out of butter, or cream or needed an onion, or garlic bulb or a can of Orangina or something (because sometimes I need a can of Orangina), but only if you needed one of these things between 8am and noon. Any other time and you were S.O.L. because it was closed. Or on Wednesdays. Wednesdays it was closed all day. So Wednesday was basically S.O.L. day.

But anyways, It's been closed for two months because Child Bride's grandmother, who had owned it, sold it.
(Sidebar - Before Child Bride's grandmother owned it, Mrs Honey did, and before that, Papa's Wife did... it's all in the family).

The new owner (some lady from Apt or someplace) decided that she wanted to completely gut it and wouldn't be opening until the beginning of August. Well it's now the beginning of August and today is supposed to be the day it is finally opened. And in a little bit I'm going to go and check it out. Because I've already been twice (once on Wednesday when it was really supposed to be opened, and once on Thursday when it definitely should have been opened and it wasn't) so maybe today is finally the day that you can actually buy a couple of things here in Le Petit Village.

And check this out... there has already been a scandal... the new owner has said that she is going to make sandwiches to sell to the tourists tomorrow for la brocante (like a big flea market in the village) and for the village fête next weekend. Well The Parisian got word of this and stormed (maybe he stormed, he could have stomped or moseyed for all I know, but I'm enjoying picturing him storming) into l'épicerie and started shouting that she didn't have any right to make and sell sandwiches in the village that was the bar's job, not l'épicerie's (I so wish I was a fly on the wall for that, and for the record, The Parisian has never sold sandwiches in the bar before), but she held firm and said that she would be selling sandwiches anyway (I'm feeling a feud coming on...).

So I think I'm going to like the new épicerie lady.

Maybe I can get her to serve Rosé?


Tuesday, August 2, 2011

when I should have been at home

Remember when I told you that I went to Avignon when I wasn't fully over the flu and probably shouldn't have gone (OK, definitely shouldn't have gone) but went anyway? Yes? Good.

The reason I went was Gatz, aka The Husband's hetero-life partner. Remember last summer (maybe not since last summer was a long time ago) when Gatz needed us to go shopping with him (because he is without a Mama, without a girlfriend, and without a wife, and needs a whole lot of help) and we discovered that he shops like an old lady, as in he shops  S L O W L Y and that made me feel good because I looked at The Husband and said, "hey, I'm not that bad am I?" No? Not a problem because this post here, will tell you all about it.

Well anyway, last year during les soldes we brought Gatz shopping and this year he needed help again. Except where as last year it was Aix, this year it was Avignon and I was really excited because Avignon in July is a little nutty thanks to the theatre festival and so I really, really wanted to go. Just for the buzz, you know? And that's how I ended up going when I should have been at home, but if you have the opportunity to hang in Avignon during the theatre festival I'm sure that you would pretend that you don't have the flu anymore too. So there you go.

This is some of what we saw...

This couple. 

And no, 19th century garb is not in style in Avignon, but thanks to the theatre festival, you'll see random people dressed in costume. It's fun. 

And loads and loads of posters advertising shows. 

And then more people marching about doing the promoting...

And some street performers too... 

... like this guy, the sand man. 

And then we were super lucky, and fate intervened, and we happened upon a little wine bar...

Which was perfect timing because I had to rest my tootsies after walking up and down and all around looking for one pair of shoes for Gatz. 
Seriously. That's all he wanted, one pair of shoes. And it took all day. All day. 

And do you know where we finally found those shoes? At Galeries Lafayette on the way home (for those not in the know, Galeries Lafayette is outside of the walls of Avignon, and would have saved us a whole lot of time if we had just gone there. But then, I guess I wouldn't have seen all the fun stuff, and wouldn't have happened upon my new favorite wine bar - favorite in Avignon anyway - and wouldn't have seen this French pigeon...

... that was eating a croissant. 

How French is that?



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