Sunday, May 19, 2019

Deux Anniversaires + a Two-fer


The Paris maps began in May 4 years ago so you will get two maps this month🥂🍾 Two birthdays/anniversaires this weekend! I'm celebrating mine in DEAUVILLE, but not telling any birthdates...ahem.
French strawberries are this months theme.
The usual nutty preparatory doodle.
To say that the French madly love strawberries/fraises is an understatement. Deauville is a good place for Normandy Garigette fraises.
In the marché on Fridays 
La Fraiserie Hardy has ripe, ready-to-eat berries. Plus the best jam on the planet.
I thought I'd be painting strawbs all weekend.
Then Barbara sent a picture of her beautifully framed watercolor parasols. I put the fraise tartes (and sorbet) away and got thinking beach umbrellas.
Parasols stay up come rain or shine. Its misty and drizzly this weekend. No matter.
The colors are even brighter when the sky is overcast. The shapes are just as fanciful. It costs 17€ to rent one for 1/2 a day. Next time.
My watercolor teacher, David Dewey always said,"When you travel, the best light will be in the hotel bathroom so paint in there". Too true. This bathroom is big enough to fit a table in! I would like to take it back to Paris.
I'm staying at small, reasonable
 HOTEL DU POLO, a few blocks from the train, close to centre ville and a 20-minute walk to the beach and Deauville's Olympic salt-water pool. A spa birthday weekend misty or not.😄
Thanks for reading Parisbreakfast. If you enjoyed this please share with a friend. Get monthly Paris letters, maps and watercolors in your mailbox at ETSY.
xxx💋Carolg et Bear 🐻 in Paris

Tuesday, May 14, 2019

Sunday Lunch at Le Grand Colbert

Thank you PBer Kathleen and Mariah. When you get an invite to Sunday lunch at LE GRAND COLBERT you go. No hesitation.
Diane Keaton did not hesitate in SOMETHING'S GOTTA GIVE.
Even though I forgot to get her famous roast chicken.
I did briefly flirt with it but the duck won.
The traditional brasserie setting is to die for. Big globe lights (the warm, golden light makes it impossible to get a decent shot btw but you look good), palm plants, Empire murals, mirrors everywhere.
Chief financier JEAN-BABTISTE COLBERT for Louis XIV is the restaurant's namesake. He originally bought the former townhouse on the spot (designed by Louis le Vau) and later accused him of nepotism and put Nicolas Fouquet, owner of CHATEAU VAUX-LE-VICOMTE in jail for fraud and a number of other shenanigans. Not my favorite Frenchman. Never mind.
His bust is still a good subject to doodle whilst waiting for your canard.
These days I doodle more than I shoot. The best record you can get of any place. Why didn't I doodle the dessert trolley?
Don't miss noticing the mosaic floors, same as in nearby GALERIE VIVIENNE .
The floral arrangements are always outstanding. Post lunch you should waltz through the gardens in the Palais Royal close by.
During the week Le Grand Colbert offers a daily blackboard special for 19,50€. But never on Sundays. 
Thanks for reading Parisbreakfast. If you enjoyed this please share with a friend. Get monthly Paris letters, maps and watercolors in your mailbox at ETSY.
xxx💋Carolg et Bear 🐻 back in Paris

Saturday, May 11, 2019

Monet at Giverny and the May Paris letter

I hear it all the time, "Oh visiting GIVERNY is on my 'bucket list'". Well cross it off and JUST GO!
The May Paris Letter comes complete with train and shuttle schedules.
Only 42 minutes from Paris. What are you waiting for?
Don't forget - take the underpass and visit the Lilly ponds and famous Monet green bridges.
I admit my favorite is Monet's kitchen.
You can take his stunning blue and egg-yolk yellow porcelain home from the gift shop if you're so inclined.
I ran to Giverny on overcast Wednesday and it was still beautiful. Afternoons and mid-week are less crowded than mornings and weekends.
My Monet doodles and
1st sketch struggles...
*Do not forget to buy some Normand Camembert or Neufchatel right from the source at a Vernon fromagerie or even at the local Monoprix.
Thanks for reading Parisbreakfast. If you enjoyed this please share with a friend. Get monthly Paris letters, maps and watercolors in your mailbox at ETSY.
xxx💋Carolg et Bear 🐻 back in Paris

Saturday, May 04, 2019

Weekend in Honfleur

The Normandy Invasion continues. Last Saturday PBer Carolyn from Seattle joined me on the 8:09 am train from Gare St. Lazare to Trouville (2 hours). Then a 30 minute scenic bus ride. Et voila Honfleur.
Last week it was parasols. This week its boats. No wonder. Honfleur is noted for its beautiful boat basin lined with old houses, the vieux basin. 
Its the birthplace of French Impressionism along the Seine. Turner, Corot, Jongking and especially Eugene Boudin who befriended Monet and took him 'en plein air' painting for the first time, wrenching him out of the studio into the luminous Norman light.
We stayed at chain hotel Ibis Styles Centre(119€). The walls had silhouettes of artists painting. Even the table was palette-shaped. My kind of place.
There are oodles of pretty shops selling everything caramel au beurre salé: candies, cookies, sauce. Plus Calvados, Cidre, Norman cheeses like Neufchatel and Camembert, the local apple juice is divine and, endless butter cookies. Basically you can eat yourself silly very easily in Honfleur.
Eating lunch and dinner out is remarkable cheap. An ample 3-course meal starts around 14€ with plenty of fresh seafood. I was happy as a clam.
Reservations are not necessary and many are simple no-fuss mom-and-pop run establishments. Jill Colonna just wrote about visiting the higher end restaurants plus other sites in 10 Reasons to Visit Honfleur, Normandy appeared on Mad about Macarons exactly while I was there.
In no time at all you can escape to old, quiet cobble-stoned streets lined with split-timbered houses. *FYI take sturdy shoes for those cobblestones.
I highly recommend visiting the Eugene Boudin museum, including a broad collection of local artists of Boudin's time as well as his sketches and paintings. Instant immersion into 19th century Honfleur. Nice scenic views over the town as well.
This week I fell overboard for ❤️ Honfleur. Have you been? 
Thanks for reading Parisbreakfast. If you enjoyed this please share with a friend. Get monthly Paris letters, maps and watercolors in your mailbox at ETSY.
xxx💋Carolg et Bear 🐻 back in Paris

Friday, April 26, 2019

Les Parasols de Deauville

Last Easter weekend JANE invited me to DEAUVILLE.
I didn't plan on falling in love ❤️ with the famous parasols on the beach. That's why they call it 'le coup de foudre'. Struck by lightening, instant love.
I love their shapes, tied up like dancer's skirt.
 Watch the video.
I love the brilliant blocks of 'color like bonbons'. Delicious
You can rent les cabines to change in, relax or escape the sun. Things haven't changed that much on the beach at Deauville
There's a terrific boardwalk (les planches) with cafes, ice cream sellers, all the essentials.
Even better, walk barefoot in the fine sand.
My painting workstation inside.
My workstation at breakfast time with Normandy Neufchatel, jam from the strawberry lady, plus her strawberries, a hunk of semi-sel (salted butter) bought in Deauville's daily marché from the fromager, a chewy baguette de tradition, pain au raisin (my current addiction), organic Normandy yogurt. Yum, yum
I ❤️ Deauville. Have you been?
Thank you for reading Parisbreakfast. If you enjoyed this forward to a friend. Receive monthly Paris letters, maps and watercolors in your mailbox + French souvenirs at ETSY.
xxx💋Carolg et Bear 🐻 in Paris