This week was brightened up considerably yesterday when I attended a French Food Camp I signed up for a few months back. I was glad to have the chance to get away for the day and do something frivolous and fun like this. One of the best parts of having a blog is meeting some extraordinary people I never would otherwise. Elizabeth Kirkpatrick, aka the Contessa and Andrea, The French Basketeer are two such women.
I’m going to write all about the camp given by Andrea and it’s theme ‘Food, France and Romance’, which is perfect for upcoming Valentine’s Day. We learned a lot, ate some seriously delicious food and got oodles of cool tips I really appreciate I’ll share with you. I think I need to use the word oodles more.
The Contessa hosted the camp at her unbelievably gorgeous villa-like home in Orinda. She’s a former antique dealer who enjoyed la dolce vita with her Italian husband and two handsome sons in Florence for many years before coming back home to the Bay Area. I knew her house as soon as I pulled into her street! Urns, a dovecote (with doves!), roses, vines and a Dutch door painted citron! So much beauty from the front step and beyond. I had to control my urge Instagram everything. Contessa’s style is a mix of Italian and French antiques and all she loves. Words cannot describe it.
Andrea, lives in Laguna Beach and splits time between French and California homes. She gives French cooking classes, special dinner parties and camps, some at her romantic home. She also and sources the most coveted French cooking goodies and sells the prettiest market baskets (some below),you can find in France! I bought two and I will show you next week.
You’ll have to wait for my blog for all the deets, but in the meantime you can pop over to Elizabeth’s blog, Vintage Hen House and Andrea’s blog, The French Basketeer and nose around! I promise you will love them both.
Speaking of estates, can we talk? Like what’s up with Downton Abbey? I know I’m not the only one disappointed with this season as a few other friends tell me the same. Enough with the Mr Bates story already and why is Mary getting even more unlikeable? Don’t even get me started on Ms. Bunting. Hate her character for some reason. Something good needs to happen fast. It feels like the show just grinds on right now.
The only good thing about Sunday is The Great British Bake Off before Downton. This show is pure joy. I have learned so much just in a few weeks of watching this. I adore Mary and Richard the judges. Aren’t they always so polite and British when biting into a crappy pie? “A good try, but maybe a bit soggy.” I’m always excited to see what the next week will be. Funny I keep trying to watch the ‘Biscuit’ episode on my DVR thinking it’s a new one when I keep realizing it is the cookies episode. Duh!
Speaking of good escapes, another show my oldest got me into is Sherlock. I put it off for a while because each episode is so long, but finally agreed and I’m crazy about it! So far four episodes in and I’m loving all the characters. I see why Benedict Cumberbatch has so many girl fans. He and Watson are the hottest thing on screen right now.
This week was brightened when I got home to find roses from California Blooms on my porch. I am going to tell you more about them next week, but if you want roses that are eco-friendly and grown in California (most come from South America), you will like this company. I am enjoying the lovely peach ones that smell like honeysuckle to me and a my favorite, white roses. Valentines is coming and if you like white, a portion goes to ovarian cancer, which is very cool.
Let’s talk lipstick like I promised. It’s Friday. You should be thinking about going out, dressing up and sometimes all you need is a pretty new color. I have it on good authority that this Tom Ford is the bomb. My former cosmetic colleague with whom worked with me on some very high profile makeup cases still test runs some of these even though she’s very busy and important now. 😉 Her latest verdict the color Casablanca. She says it flatters everyone. I’m tempted to order one. I have never had a $50 lipstick, but I love everything Tom Ford does. Doesn’t it look like the perfect shade?
This week I accidentally found this lovely American woman, Anne Lipscomb and her cute videos about living in Paris and enjoying life there. I thought this video was wonderful on the very different way the French view older women. She has many videos and they are all uplifting and she’s soothing to watch…
Remember to enjoy the little things, be silly, have some laughs and be good to yourself.