Chocolate & Zucchini newsletter // January 2017 edition
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Happy New Year!
Wow, can you believe it? It's 2017 already! Some will say "Finally!" and I understand the many reasons why, but 2016 was a particularly good year for my own little family, so I will choose to remember the happy stuff. And I wish you all a fresh new year full of joy and sparkle, and hope that you spend it becoming more and more yourself each day, leaving everything and everyone better than you found them.
So. What's new? We had such a lovely, quiet Christmas celebration this year. Now that my children are respectively 4 1/2 and almost 2, we are really getting into the magic of it.
In addition to the big-boy bike for Milan (training wheels? who needs 'em?) and the adorable crochet vegetables and mini dining set for Mika, Maxence and I had a blast hunting for vintage toys from our own childhoods, such as "real" Lego blocks (not the hyper-specialized, imagination-thwarting crap they put out now) and Smurf figurines (I mean Schtroumpfs) with an actual! mushroom! house!.
- As part of my Monthly Museum Challenge, I went to the Grand Palais to see the Hergé exhibition all about the creator of Tintin, joining a private guided tour led by the amazing Catherine Rosane of Fred & Kate. I loved the exhibition and Catherine's insightful take on it, and doodled along gleefully (see below). I am now engrossed in Benoît Peeters' biography of Hergé, Hergé fils de Tintin.
How to Throw a Dinner Party Like a Parisian, with some of my thoughts thrown in.
- In addition to my Monthly Museum Challenge, I'm enriching my life further with a Monthly Poem Challenge: I'll be choosing a new poem to memorize each month. For years and years I've known just two (Mon Rêve familier and Le Dormeur du val), and I've just memorized this new one, which jumped up at me in a copy of Les Fleurs du Mal lying around at Aloha Café. I love the idea that by the end of 2017, if all goes well, I'll know twelve more. Are you in?
- Meals at La Mascotte, a wonderful Belle Époque brasserie in Montmartre where the food is excellent and the waiters are genuinely nice.
- Our new hand-crafted clay mugs in moss green and yellow, which I found at Amami in Paris. I plan to spend all winter with my hands wrapped around their smooth, soft sides.
Find my top Paris spots on this map of favorites, and follow me on Instagram to see many more food shots and Paris recommendations throughout the month!
On My Bookshelf
(December 20, 2016)
Christmas is just a few days away (not to stress you out or anything) and I was shocked to realize that, in thirteen years of Chocolate & Zucchini, I have never offered an actual post outlining how to host a French holiday meal. So whether you’re seeking to add a […]
(December 13, 2016)
I will own up to it right then and there: I am an inveterate collector of pasta. Guilty as charged. In fine food shops and Italian markets, I love to study the different shapes and imagine which will lend themselves to smooth sauces or chunky ones. I love their names […]
(December 7, 2016)
I discovered chokladbollar, or Swedish chocolate balls, during my blissful trip to Stockholm last month. The city is peppered with cosy coffee shops that sell coffee, yes, but also pretty little sandwiches, and the kind of wholesome home-style sweets that go so well with a steaming cup of something. And […]