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6 janvier 2013 7 06 /01 /janvier /2013 16:02

Dear readers,


Chers lecteurs,


It's a holiday tradition that I spend a day in Paris with my father.


C'est devenu une tradition de passer une journée à Paris avec mon Papa lors des fêtes de fin d'année.




We walked through the Luxembourg Park where he used to sail toy boat on the pool when he was a little boy.


Nous avons traversé le Luxembourg où nous avons croisé ce garde tellement "cliché" que je me suis dit que l'uniforme avait été choisi pour plaire aux touristes.




There we met a guard that was very "French cliché" looking. I bet they chose that uniform for tourists!


We went to eat to a no less French bistrot.




Nous n'avons pas manqué de nous arrêter dans un bistrot typique, le genre où l'on est tellement serré que l'on mange presque sur les genoux de son voisin!


And I then took him to the "passages", which are those covered alleys that go from one street to another and are full of wonderful shops!




Nous avons ensuite traversé divers passages couverts qui cachent des boutiques toutes plus belles les unes que les autres.




We had a great day, though we barely could feel our feet at the end of the day from walking so much!




I hope you enjoyed that walk through Paris as well.




Magali, from the Little White House xxx






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8 décembre 2012 6 08 /12 /décembre /2012 19:39

Dear readers,


Chers lecteurs,



Going shopping in December around here is pure craziness. There's just nowhere to park and even if you can park, there are so many people in the aisles that it gets on my nerves in no time and there's no need to tell you the lines at the cashier are "as long as a day without bread" (French saying).


Alors qu'il est impossible de trouver la moindre place pour garer sa voiture dans les parkings des magasins en ces temps de fêtes, j'ai décidé d'utiliser ma méthode habituelle: dénicher sur Le Bon Coin l'objet de mes rêves et aller le chercher, ayant ainsi l'occasion d'une petite ballade.


So I went shopping my way today. I found something I liked and needed on the Internet, phoned the lady selling it and hopped in the car.


Of course, I wandered in the town the seller lived in.




I apologize for the quality of the pictures... The light was just "bleak" today.I actually love the colour of the skies at this time of the year.


As many old towns, it is built on a hill top... which makes visiting the town rather tiring!




Lamballe is an old medieval town with lots of tiny narrow streets, so taking a picture with a camera like mine is a challenge, as I can never get a whole house in the frame!


Lamballe est une jolie petite ville médiévale dont les rues sont tellement étroites qu'il est difficile d'avoir le recul nécessaire pour prendre des photos!




I swear I didn't drink before taking the pictures! The houses are wonky, either because they are very old or because they never were straight to begin with!


Non, non, je n'avais pas bu avant de prendre les photos. Les maisons ne sont juste pas droites du tout!



I'm so sorry the square was being redone unfortunately for my pictures...




I saw glimpses of beautiful houses hidden behind big gates.




And even a white xxx was blooming in December!




Can you see the house has interior shutters?


Obviously, I couldn't walk those streets without thinking of the unfortunate Princess of Lamballe who was a close friend to Marie-Antoinette and was killed during the 18th century revolution. She never walked those streets, though.


Evidemment, en arpentant ces rues, j'ai eu une pensée pour la pauvre princesse de Lamballe, même si elle n'a probablement jamais mis les pieds dans cette ville!



La Princesse de Lamballe, by Elisabeth Vigée-Lebrun.


Thanks for joining me in that cold and damp weather for the walk!


Now, to see what I bought today, you'll have to come back!



Magali, from The Little White House xxx



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31 août 2011 3 31 /08 /août /2011 21:42

I had to spend the day in Paris yesterday. "Had to" might seem a weird way to say it if you're dream is to visit the city. But I wasn't there for a sightseeing trip... unless you count Tenon Hospital as a must-see.

You could, actually, as it's an old historic building.




Sorry, the picture is awful... Not centered or anything, but try taking a picture while doctors, nurses are running around and you don't want to delate them from whatever important thing is making them run!


So, anyway, there I was for a day for a medical exam...


When I left the hospital, I had an other four hour  to spend in Paris before my train back home... So I went shopping!


But I thought shopping was a sport that required some energy so I went to ... Starbucks. I Know, how very unFrench! But, just in case you're visiting Paris on your own someday, here's my tip. Near the Opera (which I NEEDED to see as it's my favourite monument),




(candid picture taken while holding a very heavy bag of china I had just bought and a steaming cup of tea from Strabucks - wait - how did I even hold the camera?)


So, where was I?  Yes, near the Opera is a Starbucks set in the most perfect building: it's easy to eat on your own there, not that expensive (at least for Paris) and they have killer ceilings:




Again, I swear I had tea and not alcohol while taking the pictures, but at 1pm it was crowded with people holding trays covered with hot beveragesand I didn't want to create an accident by standing for hours in the way (you should have seen the faces of people when I took out my camera - "an other tourist" they thought very loud).  I just snapped the pictures before going out, thinking nobody would believe me if I wrote Starbucks had the best ceilings!




This is the arch leading to the restrooms... really makes you want to pee, hey?


Besides their ceilings, they also have yummy cinnamon rolls...


Very Parisianly yours,




Magali, back at the Little White House





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1 août 2011 1 01 /08 /août /2011 20:15


Dear readers,


With everything that's happening at the house (you can check here), I thought I deserved, or at least needed, some time off.


My parents live in a lovely town so I left my paintbrushes in their garage and headed downtown.


It's on the seaside.




There are the most beautiful houses to admire while walking by.




It's also a city where there are wonderful bakers.




Tell me your mouth is not watering... Liars!


There's also a shop that has yummy old-fashioned (and still hand-made) lollipops.




In the right jar, the lollipop flavour is typical from Brittany: salted butter fudge. Yummy!


Plus, bonus for me, it's amazing how many English shops there are in this French town!




"Jane Petticoat" has the most perfect china!




The owner of this tea room is always smiling. Have a look inside.




There's even an antique shop that specializes in everything English and old from teaspoons to china cabinets....




The best thing is maybe that the owner has a delicious accent...from Spain!


OK, I was just kidding, not about the accent, she's truly Mediterranean, but about this being the best thing.


The best thing is that it's the only shop on the coast selling...




that's right, Emma Bridgewater mugs!!! I love how Emma Bridegwater create designs that are traditional with a twist. I spend several minutes every week on their website, daydreaming... It would look so beautiful on my future kitchen shelves...


Speaking of, did you know that  Sarah, from Modern Country Style, is having an "Emma Bridgewater giveaway"? Really I shouldn't tell you, but go & visit her blog if you love what you see here:




If you don't already know Sarah's blog by heart, please click below:






Magali, from a very English French town




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9 juin 2011 4 09 /06 /juin /2011 17:13

Hi everyone!


Bonjour à tous!



I'm busy as a bee and so I'm more than a little late with blogging, both in writing and reading: about a hundred of your wonderful posts are impatiently waiting to be read in my mailbox!



Je suis un peu débordée et je ne prends pas le temps le soir d'écrire mon petit article, ni malheureusement, de lire tous les articles que je reçois dans ma boîte mail... Mais je vais me rattraper!!




But it's the end of the school year. So staff meetings are compulsory, even if you're just a substitute visiting for a few weeks. Do I need to tell you how boring it is when you're only here for the company and can't give your opinion as you barely know the school?


C'est la fin de l'année et les conseils de classe et les réunions se multiplient... Même si je ne suis que la remplaçante qui ne fait que passer dans le collège!




Also, my dance school is preparing for the end of the year show, which means lots of rehearsals... I agreed in September to be "Alice" as I had been told I would just be on stage so that the different routines performed by the children would seemed to be linked (they all do something that evokes Wonderland)... But now it means I have to be present for all the different groups' reheasals!!! Who am I kidding? I love every moment of it, but I can't deny it's time consuming!!! The laundry waiting to be dealt with in the bathroom is about the size of Mount Everest!


De plus, comme chaque année à cette époque, les répétitions pour le spectacle de danse se multiplient. Conséquence immédiate: ma pile de linge sale est en passe de dépasser le Mont Everest... Je vais peut-être rentrer dans le livre des records!


Last week, a dear friend visited and we managed to go hiking in some wonderful places in between rehearsals. The weather was perfect. And can you believe the colour of the sea? Does it look like it's in France? I thought I was on a Carribean island, at least.


La semaine dernière, une amie est venue me rendre visite et l'on a réussi à glisser quelques petites ballades entre deux répétitions! Non, mais vous avez vu la couleur de la mer? Juste à quelques minutes de la maison! Je sais, j'ai tellement de chance.





I would like to thank my friend in this post as she's such a sweetie, always smiling... Even if I wasn't always in the best of health during her stay! Thanks, Delphine, for being who you are!




We spent a lot of time admiring wondeful houses.




Seeing all these houses actually gave me new energy for the remodel that's going to take place in July at the Little White House: choosing tiles, doors and switches is like going to Wonderland - a mix of dream and nightmare!







Magali, from the Little White House



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26 avril 2011 2 26 /04 /avril /2011 17:38

OK, so there wasn't much of a parade actually as it was my parents and I quietly at home. But it was a super nice day.




D'accord, ce n'était pas une vraie parade, car traditionnellement, mes parents et moi passons Pâques tranquillement ensemble. Mais il faisait tellement beau que la promenade s'est transformée en quelque chose de magique.


The weather was so nice... We went for a walk... Flowers blooming everywhere made it magical.




It does look like a scene from a movie, doesn't it? Like the flowers were put there, just for us!




I really enjoyed the quiet walk and being outside of my garden for the day... It actually gave me strength to go back gardening the next day with new energy! My mother gave me a book called "How to organise your garden" and the author says  it's good to make a sketch of what we want when redoing a garden... I'll try to do that during the week.


J'ai adoré sortir de mon jardin qui me demande tant de travail en ce moment. Cette pause m'a redonné de l'énergie... En plus, mes parents m'ont donné un énorme coup de main sur le déracinage!


A last glimpse of the flowers in my garden:




Ma maman m'a offert un livre de conseils sur comment créer son jardin: ils recommandent de faire un dessin de ce que l'on a en tête. Je vais essayer ça dans la semaine!




Magali, from the Little White House






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16 mars 2011 3 16 /03 /mars /2011 20:19

Failte you all!


Failte à tous!


This is just a quick post to wish you all a happy Saint Patrick's Day.


Un tout petit article pour rendre hommage à l'Irlande à l'occasion de la Saint Patrick.




I went twice to Ireland and the second time was very important as I took so many life-changing decisions during that trip.


Je suis allée deux fois en Irlande et au cours du second voyage, j'ai pris plusieurs décisions qui ont complètement changé ma vie.




Today my life owes a lot to those decisions.




Ma vie d'aujourd'hui est directement liée aux décisions prises lors de ce voyage.




Isn't this land magical?




N'est-ce pas magique?


I made some soda bread tonight - an Irish recipe of course!




Du coup, j'ai fait un pain au lait ribot ce soir - une recette irlandaise, bien sûr!





Little White House xxx



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13 novembre 2010 6 13 /11 /novembre /2010 17:19

If you've had a look at the weather button I have on the blog, you know it's been raining for days here... So much for my theory saying that there is at least a ray of sunshine a day here!!! I think it would cheer me up to remember better days, maybe it could also cheer you up.

A few month ago, the sun was out every morning, not lazy as it is now!


This is in memory of my beloved (and authentic) Panama hat, that unfortunately drowned in the sea a few days later. I so blame myself for not teaching it how to swim.

Can you see the medieval castle in the background? This place is just breathtaking, and only an hour away from the Little White House.


I loved the castle as I'm a history buff... But I really adored "Dame Isabelle's Garden". The owners actually still live in the castle (can you imagine living here? Wow!) and Dame Isabelle designed a medieval garden.

This is how it looked at the very beginning of spring:


And in the middle of the summer (taken from the opposite angle):



I'm dreaming of a medieval square garden in my second garden later on and this one was inspiring (the square above is the one with aromatic herbs aka in French as "jardin de simples"). Right now, my garden looks like a jungle, but a gardener is coming to help me in February: we'll remove some of the trees, shrubs and the remains of the very old henhouse, so next year I'll begin a fruit garden. Why waiting February? Because we need to have access to my garden through the field behind the garden and right now something is growing there... The farmer said it would be ok in February... Can't wait.


If you're interested in history, you might want to visit the website: Fort La Latte.

They even have a picture of the huge fireplace inside the Governor's house that you don't get to visit as it is still the home of the owners.


Little White House xxx
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