What a weekend …

If it’s Friday, it must be France …

Wow! It was all happening this weekend … not just in Nice but all over France! So please excusez-moi for being a little tardy with this post.

Saturday was the biggest national holiday of the year, la Fête Nationale, which is also known as le Quatorze Juillet and Bastille Day (although the latter is a term used more by people not in France, for some reason). It’s always fun to be in Nice for this holiday. It’s a great family time and the beaches are popular gathering spots here. Normally the beaches are busy at night too as everyone enjoys the fireworks.

After the horrific attack here two years ago on the 14th, remembering and honouring those who lost their lives has taken precedence over everything else on this date. I’ve been so touched by the sensitive and emotional homage organized last year and this. Fireworks have been dispensed with, out of respect.

Today the mood changed as France played Croatia in the final game of the World Cup. Horns have been honking all through town for the last four hours after France won 4 to 2 over Croatia. Flags are waving all along the Promenade des Anglais and cries of Allez les Bleus fill the air, as soccer (le foot as it’s called here) fans celebrate the win. It’s been twenty years since the last one!

July also means one more given in France ~ le Tour de France is underway! I’m in awe of these athletes. But even if you are not interested in the race, watching every day is a wonderful way to feel like you are taking a trip to France. The countryside and towns the tour visits are featured in a beautiful way. Here’s the map of this year’s course in case you want to follow along. I will! Click on the map for a larger view. 

And to top off the weekend, I had to start packing! Our stay in Nice is over for this summer and it’s time to get back to Toronto. Normally I would be in serious whining mode now. However, knowing I will be back in six weeks to prepare for our women’s south of France tour, makes the leaving easier.

This past week was made even better with a visit from Nancy McGee, owner of Absolutely Southern France, who is co-ordinating our tour and my good friend and co-host on the tour, Deborah Bine (aka Barefoot Blogger). All the details are in place and we can’t wait to take this show on the road! Click here to read about the Memories Tour. 

Have you followed all this exciting sporting news? Did you celebrate le Quatorze Juliet? What are your summer plans? Are you coming on a tour with us in 2019?

 

So much to do, so little time …

If it’s Friday, it must be France …

Bienvenue juillet! July … here so soon! So many photos and so little time to organize them.

Setting aside the Promenade and the Med for now, I’m fascinated by the details of the splendid Bourgeois, Belle Epoche and Art Deco architecture in Nice. Strolling around each day, never fails to bring a new discovery.

And then there was a day in intriguing medieval Entrevaux … another peek … If you recall, that’s the town where I set the beginning of Book 2, Promises To Keep. After my husband and I accidentally visited there, I couldn’t take this village out of my mind. I just had to write about it. It was great fun to go back this past week with friends and find it has not lost its mystique.

 

And I haven’t given you a peek from Antibes yet, but I’ve got to get back to writing! Next week, Antibes.

I’ve realized I should put all the photos into their own albums or slideshows and then make them available for those who want to see them. Another project! Are you finding your summer is filled with projects too?

Celebrate the Summer Solstice!

If it’s Friday, it must be France …

I love being in France for June 21! It’s officially summer, for one thing, and the longest day. Although I must admit summer seems to have been well established on the Côte d’Azur for several weeks now. The weather has been magnifique!

Not only do we welcome the Summer Solstice at this time, but throughout France, since 1982, La Fête de la Musique is celebrated in every community big or small. From a single performer on a street corner to groups of all sizes … choral, instrumental or a combination thereof … there is music. The whole town turns out and age is not a factor ~ young or old, it’s usually a late night filled with laughter, song and general bonhomie. Great fun!

All this week, Place Massena has been closed off as the stage for the biggest concert of the fête was being constructed. Security measures were also being put in place to ensure the safety of everyone.

 

We decided to watch from the comfort of our living room as the entire event was televised. The weather was perfect and everyone appeared to have a fine time right up until it ended around 1 a.m.! It was a pleasure to watch such a joyful event. You can get an idea from this shot taken of our television screen. The lighting became more spectacular as the evening wore on. A fête indeed. Bravo, la ville de Nice! 

I‘m excited about the new exhibit “Matisse, Picasso and their models“, opening tomorrow at the Musée Matisse. Click this link for an excellent website, Best of Nice Blog, to see what options you have for getting to the museum. Whatever information you would like about Nice, can pretty much be found here.

It’s a beautiful building, n’est-ce pas? Well worth a visit at any time. Matisse had such a history with Nice and the surrounding area. This excellent article from The Good Life France gives you more details about the legacy he left here.

 

And not to be outdone in the excitement department , I’m happy to be participating in an author event, being held in Nice tomorrow.  Here’s the info and if you are available to drop by, please do!


There are just a few days left to take advantage of this Amazon promotion. Once you’ve read Book 1, The Promise of Provence, you won’t want to miss the rest of the adventure!

Bon weekend tout le monde! Enjoy your weekend everyone!

Print copy giveaway ~ 2 days left to enter!

If it’s Friday, it must be France …

FIVE PRINT COPIES OF DRAWING LESSONS ~ TWO DAYS LEFT TO ENTER YOUR NAME ~ May 20 is the deadline ~ ONE OF THESE BOOKS MAY BE YOURS!  GOOD LUCK/BONNE CHANCE

(USA only … sorry, Goodreads rule, not mine!)

CLICK HERE TO ENTER

I loved writing this story, although the beginning caused me to use a few boxes of tissues. That part of the story is partially based on the true experience of a friend of mine and I felt her pain with every word. 
But the hope and happiness that grows as the story progresses, lifted my spirits as I hope it will yours. Let me know!
In case you are not familiar with Drawing Lessons, here are a few reviews to give you an idea. 90% of the reviews are 5 and 4 stars. Thank you to everyone who takes the time to leave one!
on May 9, 2018
Devastatingly tragic, yet beautifully hopeful. Patricia Sands’ novel Drawing Lessons is a story about a wife forced to face difficult circumstances. She has lost herself over the years, and gets the opportunity to attend an art course in Europe. There, she meets colorful characters and lets go of things beyond her control. She finds truth and hope in her art, and embarks on a new adventure. Sands’ characters are unique and inspiring, and her story gives the reader hope that happiness can, indeed, be found even when life’s curveballs attempt to thwart us.
on April 24, 2018
If you love France and you love reading, read Patricia Sands! Drawing Lessons is a trip to Arles in three hundred pages as a woman living with heartbreak learns the art of leading a new life.
on April 22, 2018
New to Patricia Sands books, I am fortunate to have found a new favorite. Though being a small-town girl who has never even seen any ocean, I could see, feel, and taste the beautifully written depiction of Provence and its wonders. The images will remain forever.
on April 13, 2018
Friendships in France once again came alive along with the food and wine. I loved the storyline which was sad at times but illustrated that love can come at any age or under any circumstance. Marilyn Grable
on March 25, 2018

I have to thank NetGalley for letting me have a copy of this book for my honest review. Also a big thank you to the Lake Union publishers.

This story starts out very emotional. Ben and Arianna have been deeply in love forever. They get the most devastating news that a couple can get. Ben has dementia. It did not take long for him to get to a state where he did not know Arianna any longer. Her children talked her into taking a retreat to Arles.

Arianna meets several other artists while in France and learns to live her life again. She goes through many ups and downs with guilt and finally does learn that she needs to live her life. She meets a man there who is an artist and decides to take him up on an offer to spend a few days with him on his boat before she leaves to go back home.

Arianna and Jacques de Villeneuve develope deep feelings for each other and she ends up staying longer. She goes back home to see Ben but he has no idea she’s even there or who she is anymore. It’s so hard for her that everyone decides she does not need to stay and just be upset all the time.

Arianna finds a life. She deserves to have a happy life.

Although I had a hard time reading a lot of this story, due to lots of tears, I also laughed along with the characters. They were fun and got on very well together. They all seemed to need to be where they were and together. This book is beautifully written and describes France in a way that makes you feel like you are there. It’s a very emotional book and one that will keep you turning pages until the very end. I enjoyed it immensely and would recommend it to anyone that loves a tearjerker and love story.

I look forward to reading more by this author as this was my first book by her.
It was a definite 5 star book

on March 4, 2018
Such a wonderful and moving book as you travel to the South of France. It’s one you will not want to put down.
on March 2, 2018
I discovered the book and author through French Word A Day. Kristin recommended it and I ordered it on Kindle for my iPad. I enjoyed reading the novel on our holiday in Mexico. The well written book delighted me because I love France, French, Food, Art, and Romance.
on February 13, 2018

Drawing Lessons is a fantastic portrait of a woman in her sixties, who suddenly must face suffering and loss, and fight again for her dreams. Patricia Sands has wonderfully presented all her characters. She has drawn them, like in a painting. While I was reading, I could actually see them, and all her descriptions have such strength and delicacy.

Years before Arianna Papadopoulos Miller have abandoned all her artistic dreams when she and her husband Ben decided to manage the family restaurant which represented all the hopes of her father, Nikos and the anchor to their Greek origins. Now with Ben’s illness, everything is going to change, and after about two years in dealing with this situation, her family encouraged her to take part in an artists’ workshop in Arles, France, to finally rediscover her dreams and herself.

This challenge could be a new beginning for Arianna, a deserved second chance to observe in a new perspective all the events which have colored her life, both joyful and painful. In Arles, Arianna will learn to share her story and emotions with new courage, thanks to a wonderful group of artists that will live side by side in the amazing atmosphere of the Mas des Artistes. Juliette, Bertie, Barbara, Joan, Lisa … you will like every individual of this colorful group. In fact, each one with different and sometimes painful experiences will receive and give support to the others, not only in the artistic field.

I really enjoyed reading about Arianna and her family and all the love and enthusiasm which made the Papadopoulos Miller family bond so special. Patricia Sands is really an acute and emotional observer. I appreciate her talent in describing with so many details not only her characters’ personalities but also the beautiful panorama, that give you a perfect glimpse of Arles and surroundings.

Drawing Lessons is a very heartwarming and touching novel about love, dreams, being faithful to open our heart and soul to new opportunities, and don’t be afraid to rediscover all the colors’ beauty and their numerous nuances.

 

Amazon gift card and five print copies!

If it’s Friday, it must be France …

TGIF, everyone! It’s the weekend again! What are your plans?

I’m starting to think about packing for France … eleven days to lift off!

As soon as this stunning scenery of the Côte d’Azur comes into view, I feel like we are home. It’s always a thrill. 🙂

Getting closer as we pass over Saint-Jean-Cap-Ferrat 

And the harbour of Villefranche-sur-Mer

As we pass over the old port of Nice, it’s just minutes before touchdown at the beautiful airport built right on the Mediterranean and basically downtown. Aeroport Nice Côte d’Azur (NCE) is unique and still small considering the amount of traffic it sees.

But enough of my dreaming. Back to those giveaways I mentioned …

Did you enter the big giveaway I wrote about in the last blog post earlier this week? You did? Great! I wish you the best of luck! It’s running until the end of the month so feel free to share it! Bonne chance!

This time I want to share information about two smaller giveaways. It’s always fun to win a prize, big or small. So good luck with these too!

First, I’m offering five print copies in a Goodreads giveaway. All you have to do is enter your name. One of those books might be waiting just for you!  Click right here.

And here’s the second giveaway.

We’re taking advantage of Drawing Lessons on sale for the month of May ~ Only $1.99 for ebook and $7.99 for paperback in the USA ~ if you do buy a copy, please take a chance to win a $25 Amazon gift card. Simply comment here, share this post, and email your proof of purchase (take a photo with your phone) to  patriciasandsauthor@gmail.com.

This contest is open for the entire month of May!
HERE’S THE LINK https://amzn.to/2wm3571

GOOD LUCK/BONNE CHANCE

I hope with all these opportunities, your name is chosen for one of the prizes. Although Goodreads limits their giveaways to USA, this second one is open to everyone as long as you order from Amazon.com. One of these days soon I will organize a giveaway good everywhere on the planet! That’s the way it should be.

Have a great weekend ~ bon weekend! Are you planning a trip this summer or going to enjoy a stay-cation? Also good! I would love to hear about it.  🙂

A Paris romp in Karen Burns’ new release!

If it’s Friday, it must be France …

Today we’re talking with author Karen Burns about writing, a new release, and the magnificent City of Light, Paris, in which her books are set.

Before we go further, here’s an FYI ~ Paris was nicknamed the “City of Light” (not City of Lights) originally because it was a vast center of education and ideas during the Age of Enlightenment.

Today, our enlightenment is all about Karen’s new release, Paris Ever After! Her exciting publishing day was May 1st and I’m delighted she had the time to stop by for a quick Q & A.

Bienvenue, Karen!

PS ~ What was your first novel and when did you write it?

KB ~ My first novel was The Paris Effect. It’s the prequel to Paris Ever After and tells the story of how Amy, a young woman from Arizona who’d never traveled anywhere, ended up having an amazing adventure in France. This book took me five years to write—I finally finished in 2015. I think that first novel always takes an author a long time, because when you start you really have no idea if you’ll finish. It’s very much the experience of setting out into the vast unknown. I should say that while my two books go together, each can be read on its own. You don’t need to have read The Paris Effect to follow, and enjoy, Paris Ever After.

PS ~ Was it always your plan to be an author?

KB ~ Well, it was always my ardent desire! Ever since I first picked up a Dick & Jane book at age two I knew that reading and writing would be my thing for life. Nearly all of my “real” jobs involved words in some way (public relations, journalism, editing) and I’ve written everything from pamphlets to speeches to instructional manuals. Novels are the most difficult things to write, in case you’re wondering. But also the most fun!

PS ~ Your covers are beautiful! How did the story line come to you for The Paris Effect and Paris Ever After?

KB ~ With the first book, I just started out with a situation and then followed along, seeing where it took me. (E. L. Doctorow once famously said, “Writing is like driving at night in the fog. You can only see as far as your headlights, but you can make the whole trip that way.”) However, this method—while exciting—results in tremendous amounts of rewriting, so with the second I tried to plan things out a bit better. My husband is incredibly helpful in this regard. He’s an engineer and claims not to have a creative bone in his body, but he’s a wonderful person to discuss plot ideas with. We love to go for long walks and talk about “what if she does this” or “what if that happens.” When I get home I scribble it all down.

PS ~ Your knowledge of life in Paris shines through in those two books. How much time have you spent there?

KB ~ I lived in Paris for three years in the nineties. Since then I’ve been lucky enough to return more or less regularly, sometimes for a couple months at a time. This city seeps into your bones and I think that’s why my novels are set there. Also, writing stories set in Paris is the next best thing to being in Paris!

PS~ How did you select your characters’ names?

KB ~ I called my main character “Amy” because it reminds me of “aimer,” the French verb for love. I chose “William” for her husband because I wanted the contrast of a short word with a longer one. I picked “Kat” for Amy’s friend because it has a sharp sound, and this character has a sharpness about her. Margaret is named after a lovely English lady I met while hiking the Cotswold Way in southwestern England. She was charming and gracious and welcoming (and just slightly loony), like Amy’s Margaret.

PS ~ Imagine your books as movies. Whom would you cast for the main characters?

KB ~ It’s funny you should mention this because my first novel (The Paris Effect) has just been optioned for film and TV. So you’d assume I’d have already thought a LOT about which actors would play my characters. But I don’t want to jinx it! However, I will say that while writing about Amy I often imagine women like Jennifer Lawrence and Ellen Page. It helps to have a picture in your head and I admire the strength, intelligence, and humor these actresses can convey.

PS ~ Would you give us a hint as to what we might expect next from you?

KB ~ Well, I’m noodling around some ideas. No actual writing yet. These days, the launch of Paris Ever Afteris taking up most of my time and energy!

PS ~ Based on your experience, what advice would you give to an author about to be published for the first time?

KB ~ Be prepared for a wild, emotional ride. Publishing a book is nerve-wracking, exciting, gratifying, and a bit terrifying all at the same time. You’re putting your baby out there for people to love or to hate, to relate to or to completely misconstrue. It’s really exposing. But people reading your work is the natural end result of writing. It completes the circle.

For more information, you can connect with Karen on her website.

Here’s where to find Karen on Facebook and on Twitter.

I had the pleasure of advance reading Paris Ever After and after just a few pages I messaged Karen to tell her I could not stop laughing. Her lovely sense of humour shines through the pages and the quirkiness of the original personalities she has created offers readers an entertaining distraction from everyday life. And to have it all set in Paris? Fantastique!

Here’s my review: “Magnifique! Fall in love with Amy as she stumbles through her new life in Paris, gradually learning what means the most in her unscripted world. Burns’ dry sense of humor and intimate knowledge of Parisian life are woven through the story as perfectly as the Hermès scarf in one of the book’s most unforgettable scenes. Heartwarming and full of colorful characters, the surprise-filled narrative is smart, wry and poignant. You won’t want to put it down. Five stars!”

And Karen’s cat, Tache, agrees!

 If you receive my monthly newsletter, you know that Karen is generously offering two print sets of these books in a giveaway. Be sure to enter and bonne chance … good luck!

If you don’t already, you can join over 5,000 book lovers (and dedicated Francophiles … oui?) with a simple click ~ subscribe to my newsletter by clicking right  here. Once a month I get to chat with all of you and offer great book giveaways from author friends who write in many different genres. On y va!

 

Lucky Friday the 13th!

If it’s Friday, it must be France …

It’s Friday the 13th! Thought by some to bring bad luck, to me it’s always a date for good news because one of my sons was born on that date. Today, this Friday the 13th, brought me a different type of good news.

Drawing Lessons will be on sale in Australia beginning Monday. I  thought I would check my book stats on Amazon.com.au and I came across this lovely review. I hope you don’t mind me sharing this food for my writer’s soul.

I loved writing Drawing Lessons but I find it my most difficult novel to promote because of the sad beginning. I know I try to avoid it.

5.0 out of 5 stars

Simply gorgeous
ByBella  TOP 500 REVIEWER  on 2 February 2018
Format: Kindle Edition
Wow. What an astonishingly touching story! I love how poetically this author writes. There was so much heart, so much beauty in this story. From the saddest situation imaginable grew something truly divine. So refreshing to read something that managed to paint such colourful images without being overly descriptive, and so wonderful to read something that blended all different kinds of people of all ages so beautifully. An absolute triumph from Patricia Sands.

If you have friends in Australia, please share this with them. Here’s the link in Amazon.com.au.

And the blurb:

The author of the Love in Provence series returns to the South of France with a poignant portrait of a woman who must learn how to create a new life for herself…

Sixty-two-year-old Arianna arrives in the South of France for a two-week artists’ workshop full of anticipation but burdened by guilt. Back home in Toronto, she has been living with the devastating diagnosis of her husband’s dementia and the heartbreak of watching the man she has loved for decades slip away before her eyes. What does her future hold without Ben? Before her is a blank canvas.

Encouraged by her family to take some time for herself, she has traveled to Arles to set up her easel in the same fields of poppies and sunflowers that inspired Van Gogh. Gradually, she rediscovers the inner artist she abandoned long ago. Drawing strength from the warm companionship and gentle wisdom of her fellow artists at the retreat—as well as the vitality of guest lecturer Jacques de Villeneuve, an artist and a cowboy—Arianna searches her heart for permission to embrace the life in front of her and, like the sunflowers, once again face the light.

Set in and around the intriguing town of Arles and down into the fascinating Camargue, the story also has the spirit of Vincent van Gogh woven into the pages.

Much of my research was conducted here in the peacefully beautiful setting of the monastery of St. Paul de Mausole, an easy walk outside St. Remy-de-Provence. Vincent admitted himself here in May 1889 for treatment. He found a certain degree of peace and acceptance from the health practitioners and his creativity flourished in between his psychotic episodes. Inspired by the light and beauty of the surrounding landscapes he built on his prodigious period in Arles (during the previous 18 months), producing some of his best work.

He remained for a year before leaving for Auvers-sur-Oise to live closer to his brother, Theo. Sadly, he died two months later.

It was here that I also observed visiting artists finding their own inspiration, surrounded by the aura of Vincent. Magic.

Easter, Passover and … April Fish Day?

If it’s Friday, it must be France …

This is a special holy weekend around the world and this year it is very early on the calendar. I send warm wishes to those celebrating Easter

or Passover ~ chag sameach

As I was doing some reading this week, I came across an article that spoke volumes to me about a meaningful message for both Passover and Easter.  It had to do with hope. I want to share it with you here.

Of course there is also another tradition at this time of year for many children. Fellow author and friend, Margo Lestz has an excellent post here comparing the traditions of children and chocolate at Easter. You may be surprised how the legends differ.

Chocolate is not quite so important at Passover.  But the traditions and foods that go along with the special meal, the seder, are celebrated every year.

Coincidentally this year, in some countries, this Sunday is also April Fool’s Day. For those who haven’t heard before, April 1st is celebrated in an altogether unique way in France.

Imagine my surprise the first time I saw childrenimages sticking paper fish on each other’s back, whispering and giggling, and then hollering, “Poisson d’Avril!”

Excusez-moi? Fish?

As Wikipedia explains: “In Italy, France and Belgium, children and adults traditionally tack paper fishes on each other’s back as a trick and shout “April fish!” in their local languages (pesce d’aprile!, poisson d’avril! and aprilvis! in Italian, French and Flemish, respectively). Such fish feature prominently on many late 19th- to early 20th-century French April Fools’ Day postcards.

April-Fools-vintage-Image-TheGraphicsFairy.com

April-Fools-vintage-Image-TheGraphicsFairy.com

I had no idea where the tradition began and, after a bit of searching, found this explanation on France Travel Guide.

“Although the origin of April Fools is obscure and debated, the most widely accepted explanation actually credits the “holiday” as starting in France. The most popular theory about the origin of April Fool’s Day involves the French calendar reform of the sixteenth century.

The theory goes like this: In 1564 King Charles XIV of France reformed the calendar, moving the start of the year from the end of March to January 1.

However, in a time without trains, a reliable post system or the internet, news often traveled slow and the uneducated, lower class people in rural France were the last to hear of and accept the new calendar. Those who failed to keep up with the change or who stubbornly clung to the old calendar system and continued to celebrate the New Year during the week that fell between March 25th and April 1st, had jokes played on them.

Pranksters would surreptitiously stick paper fish to their backs. The victims of this prank were thus called Poisson d’Avril, or April Fish—which, to this day, remains the French term for April Fools—and so the tradition was born.”

poisson d'avril

Poisson d’avril

Boulangeries and patisseries deliciously get into the spirit with fish-shaped goodies. Oh … and did I mention the chocolatiers? Schools of fish of all sizes fill shop windows, the larger ones often filled with smaller treats. To a chocoholic, fish never tasted so good!

Since Easter usually falls around the same time, fish feature predominantly in shop windows through that holiday as well.

Maybe we should adopt a symbol for April Fool’s Day in North America, so there would be a good excuse to buy special chocolates on that day over here. Not that we ever really need an excuse for chocolate …

Wherever you are, have fun on April 1st and enjoy some chocolate.

Are you a prankster on April 1st or do you just grit your teeth and hope the day will pass quickly? Is there one April Fool’s Day joke in particular that you will never forget?

On  The Good Life France   (amazing photography and articles ~ you know I’m a huge fan!), there’s another article by Margo Lestz about April 1st in France.  Margo writes perfectly-researched articles, as well as entertaining books about some of the quirky history and traditions of France.  Click here to visit her website!

How will you celebrate this very special weekend?

Treat yourself and others to this …

If it’s Friday, it must be France …

Good news! Bonnes nouvelles!

Ida Young-Bondi, the creator of E-French Café and French instructor extraordinaire, has a brilliant new program. Take a look at this:

Click here to link to the rest of the information.

I have just treated two good friends to this who cannot get out much, and they are delighted with the gift. Ida’s photos steal you away to France and you have the image to savour forever. It’s the perfect gift for the Francophile who has everything!

If you follow Ida on Instagram or Periscope or on Facebook, you already know she is an excellent photographer and she knows France doublement à l’envers/inside out and backwards … all the narrow allées, ancient doors and windows, perfect Côte d’Azur vistas and small details that make us swoon.

You know how I feel about sharing photos from France. Imagine receiving one every day from Ida with un petit goût/a little taste of information about it.

For a limited time there is a reduced price for the first few people to sign up. Don’t wait.

Come back in a month or so and tell me how much you are loving this. I already am!

And please share this with your friends. Merci!

eFrenchCafe Website – http://www.eFrenchCafe.com

Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/eFrenchCafe/

Instagram – https://www.instagram.com/efrenchcafe/

Twitter – http://www.twitter.com/efrenchcafe

Periscope – http://www.periscope.tv/efrenchcafe

Think warm, please!

If it’s Friday, it must be France …

I’m hearing from my friends in Nice that it is ch-ch-chilly and une vague de froid, a cold wave, is in the weather forecast. The annual Carnaval de Nice is well under way and it’s not nearly as much fun having to be bundled up to brave the elements.  So let’s think warm for everyone there!

To read about all the colourful craziness of this festival, which began in 1830, click on the following link. Margo Lestz shares the history and entertaining details in “Carnival Kings, Silly Strings, and Blooming Things”.

Even if we can’t be in Nice now, just reading about it will make you laugh. An air of warm hospitality fills the town … and, of course, temptations abound ~ such as the traditional treats les bugnes or beignets de carnaval. Deep fried pastry flavoured with orange flower water, they are simply melt-in-your-mouth delicious!

Today’s post sends out vibes of warm moments in Nice, in the hopes Mother Nature will change her plans for all the eager celebrants. Surely this year’s Roi de l’Espace, King of Space, seen in this short video, must have some influence on the elements.

And even though the beach umbrellas are all stored away until summer arrives, I hope these sunny memories help stir a little warmth.

Are you having a cold wave in your neighbourhood too? Whatever you are doing, I hope you enjoy a bon weekend