Saturday, March 1, 2014

February 2014

snow drops in bloom in the forest
Feb 2014

Wow, Feb has come to an end. OK, so I am a day late!! Our mild winter has continued, although yesterday was cold and the next few days also. There is even some light snow predicted, but I doubt it will happen. We have not had snow since the one day in Nov. Right now there are daffodils and tulips in bloom, and our forsythia is ready to burst into flowers. 

sooooo good
The month has passed surprisingly uneventful. The two week school break has started. Our bakery is closed, they took the two weeks off ! Alwys a crisis when that happens. Other businesses are closed at the too, families take advantage of the school break and go on vacation. Tried to find bread one day, only to find four other bakeries closed also!! Yikes what is a person to do! This obsession with bread may seem strange, but once you have lived here and are able to buy good french bread daily, the taste buds start to demand it. "Wonder bread" may have built bodies in 12 ways, but it can not compete with the wonderful crusty french bread. I have gone native, no doubt about it!

At the same time our neighbors left for a long weekend and left poor little Tim (the cat) outside. Keith checked and saw that there were food bowls out in front of the door to his house. He stayed with us the first night, and we assume he found one of his other house to stay the second night. He is resourceful, and has befriended half the neighborhood! We do not feed him, so although our house is great for a good nap, it does not come with room service.

Oh yes, we did have the wallpaper done in the living room/dining room area. The guest room is still full of "stuff" that I am not sure I want to move back into the rooms downstairs. The light paper on the walls really makes the room brighter. Keith now has his future laid out for him. He had built a TV cabinet for the corner, but now we want it flat against one wall. So basically he has to rebuild this cabinet. Then there is the corner lamp he has to will be Arts and Crafts style to go with the other furniture he has made and will have stained glass ...that he is also on his "to do" list now. I do not expect this to be done in a short time frame! As soon as the weather gets better, more time will go to cycling. Always, always take it slowly. I bought curtains the other day, nothing fancy, just white voile and washable. But picking the curtain rods seems to be a huge sticking point! Zen decision at a time.  Not all pictures are hung yet either. We are taking our time and choosing slowly.

moved the couch to the window
the light from the lamps is a little bright!
New lamp in this corner
idea of lamp...but Keith has not picked final pattern -so only an idea

cabinet to rebuild

wood stove...need something on the left wall?
Cat story, house decorating, bread, I have really captivated you by now. Might as well continue on with this mundane month. Keith has been busy every week-end with fixing trains at Bligny. Last three Saturdays it has rained so they have had to find projects indoors. He has gone out on rides some of the sunny days, or even the not so sunny days. Other day he had a flat, and the spare was flat and he had no patches. He pumped and rode and pumped and rode to the next city for a bike shop.

The association I belong to has a large exposition planned for November for the 100 years since WWI. Lots of work this year on that project. My little group 'nature, flora and fauna" is going to decorate the Tourist Office window the end of April. So been busy planning that exposition.

As always went on a few walks. Did not always take photos, a little dull this time of year, but took some.
Walking along a cliff edge, seems to happen a lot !!
Water everywhere too

Cliff, friends, dogs and water
Sue is standing way back from the edge!!!!

"Helleborus foetidus", blooms in the winter.

Sky was so blue
We have village elections this month. It is for the mayor and city council. The first round is March 23rd. Here a candidate makes a list of people he/she wants on the city council (new law states it must be proportional men to woman). The "list" is then registered with the Prefecture before Feb 28. When you vote, you vote for a "list". Our mayor is retiring, and so the adjunct has presented a list to the Prefecture. It is not known if another person registered or not here in Gevrey (should know by Monday). If there is a clear majority on the 23rd, then the election is done. If there are many lists (I assume Paris may have more than 2 lists), then the second round of voting will be on the 30th of March.

Recipe of the Month

Ham, Endive and Cheese (gratin) 
This is a simple recipe, but very rich. One of those winter hardy recipes. Some of you in the northern part of the USA might want to try it, with all the cold and snow this winter!


  •  2 endvies - medium
  • 2 slices of ham
  • 5 ounces grated cheese ( Gruyere, or white cheddar)
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 cups whole milk ( I use creme fraiche, but milk would cut a few calories)
  • Freshly cracked black pepper to taste ( ham is salty, so no salt is added)
  • 1/8 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
  1. Cut the core from the endive and steam about 5-8 minutes (until tender)
  2. Put aside on a paper towel
  3. in sauce pan melt the butter
  4. add flour and stir until mixed well
  5. Add milk or creme fraiche and cook until thick
  6. put 1/2 in the bottom of cooking dish
  7. Take the endive and wrap it in one slice of ham
  8. Place the two wrapped endives in baking dish
  9. Covered with remaing sauce
  10. Cover with cheese
  11. Bake around 20 minutes, until cheese is bubbly and slightly brown
mmm, Keith usually eats two of these!!

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