Best of May

Lily of the valley

I am writing to you from a hotel room near Dallas, Texas, where I am spending a full week to attend The Life Coach School training with Brooke Castillo.

If you don’t know who Brooke Castillo is, let’s just say she is an amazing woman who has changed my life in more ways than I can list. She is among the people who most inspired me to create my own podcast last year, Change ma vie, and to develop my life coaching practice. Going through her training now is an incredible process, and I will be certified in the coming weeks.

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La Cornue Range: A Factory Tour!

La Cornue

A few weeks back, I had the opportunity to visit the workshop where La Cornue stoves are manufactured. La Cornue is the French brand for luxurious kitchen ranges, and is this year celebrating the 110th anniversary of its famous vaulted oven, first created in 1908.
 
I’ve always loved factory tours, and this one lived up to my expectations. I’ve been dreaming of La Cornue ranges for a long time, and I was glad to confirm that the perception I had — that of a luxurious artisan brand — was indeed reflected in the high standards maintained in every step of production.

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Otium Salad with Roasted Radishes and Shaved Asparagus

Otium Salad

Photography by Céline de Cérou.

Do you know what Otium means? Otium is the Latin word for virtuous leisure, a time free of obligation that is spent in contemplation, and the cultivation of one’s spirit.

This is a concept that resonates with me deeply, as I have become more and more interested in personal development and mind management these past few years, a passion that has led me to create a podcast and a life coaching practice, for which I am about to get certified.

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French Gift Ideas for Mother’s Day

French Gift Ideas for Mother's Day

Mother’s Day is celebrated the second Sunday of May in North America. In France, it is the last Sunday in May. (Unless that falls on Pentecost Sunday, in which case it’s the first Sunday in June. Still with me?)

In 2018, Americans will celebrate Mother’s Day on May 13; the French will celebrate la fête des mères on May 27.

If your mother loves all things French, this is the time to pamper her inner Parisienne! You could even surprise her with an encore gift on French Mother’s Day.

French children usually craft some kind of project at school for their maman — most iconically, un collier de pâtes, a necklace made of dried pasta — and graduate to buying her flowers, chocolates, or beauty products when they are older.

Here are some wonderful, high-quality French gift ideas I’ve hand-picked with love so you can tell your amazing mother how amazing she is. And if you’re a new mother, you are fully entitled to buying any one of these for your amazing self, obv.

For even more French-inspired ideas, check out my Best Gifts for the French-Loving Cook! All of them will work as a French Mother’s Day gift.

Bonne fête to Mamans everywhere!

French Mother’s Day Gift Ideas

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Best of April

Lilac in bloom

• We’ve had an eerily summer-like month of April, with cherry blossoms and lilac and wisteria blooming everywhere, unending afternoons at the park, and blissful dinners on sidewalk terraces.

• I have been to see the exhibition Dutch Artists in Paris, which ends on May 13, and L.O.V.E.D. it. My favorite part was seeing the paintings Van Gogh painted of Montmartre when he lived on rue Lepic, behind a handsome blue door I always point out with relish on my Montmartre tours. And now, based on the view he painted from his apartment, I’ve even figured out which window he was looking out from!

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