Sunday, July 30, 2017

4 days in Lisbon

FINALLY I downloaded all the pictures.  We had such a great time!  And ate lots of octopus and drank tons of vino verdhe.  yum.

Friday
Paris to Lisbon, checking into Sheraton.  Lunch at traditional Portuguese restaurant Rei Da Pescada. Back to hotel, naps, drinks at the restaurant rooftop bar, meeting Kathleen and Marek in Alfama, dinner in Fado restaurant.

Saturday
Room service breakfast (Vincent needed pancakes), pool, more pancakes, pizza for a late lunch, a walk through town, touring the Carmo Convent ruins left after the 1755 earthquake.  Beware, there is a picture of two creepy mummy children in the museum.  We hustled Vincent past them quickly! More walking through the shopping district and Plaza, walking to Alfama area, wine and cheese bar, dinner outside.

Sunday and Monday
Pool, delicious meal at Descobre, a walk along the water, seafood platter for dinner.  Back to Paris on Monday after finding some sushi for lunch.

more pictures

tram video

We crashed Kathleen and Marek's 2 week Portugal vacation to meet them in Lisbon.  We've been to Lisbon before (2012) and loved it, and could not pass up a 2 hour plane ride to hang with friends in the warm Portugal sun.  It did not disappoint.

Kathleen and Marek stayed in the cool Alfama neighborhood by the water while we were a bit further North, but a cab ride was about 4 euros!  Marek's cousin and husband also came down from Poland.  So much fun....fresh seafood, really cheap and good wine including vino verdhe (green, young, sparkling wine).  And even though Kathleen and I have known each other for 43 years, there is not one good picture of us from the entire time, and we couldn't get one on this trip either.

We did some things this time we didn't the first trip - listen to Fado in a basement restaurant,

Vincent loved our hotel room, pancakes for breakfast from room service, the pool, the cool yellow trams, and seeing Kathleen and Marek.

The amazing rooftop bar - a proper sidecar and whiskey sour:

It's good to be the King and his son, the Dauphin I guess you would call Vincent.  And how about that proper Portuguese breakfast sausage?  yeah!



Friday, July 28, 2017

back from camp

Alex returned Thurs July 27th from camp, we went to pick him up at Gare Montparnasse he was on the TGV from Toulouse.  Vincent was overcome with emotion and would not stop hugging Alex. Then there was sushi for dinner, ASAP.

pictures



Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Alex at camp


pictures
Alex is still at camp in the South of France in Gaillac, he returns this Thurs July 27.  We have received email updates and pictures from the camp team, and we can see Alex in a few of the photos.
We spoke with him a few times.  He went kayaking in the Gorges de l'Aveyron and said it was amazing.




Alex chose the cinema workshop and they did a remake of "Jurassic Park" -






Thursday, July 20, 2017

JD's birthday, Tiernan visiting

pictures
A nice sunny day walking around Paris with Tiernan who was visiting from Manchester.  Bus into Paris, the scaffolding was being dismantled from the July 14th parade the day before.  Through the Tuileries, to the Louvre, over the Pont des Arts, past the booksellers and over the Pont Neuf bridge to Île de la Cité, past Notre Dame, on to Île Saint-Louis and past all those ridiculous lines for Berthillon ice cream, into the Marais, past Centre Pompidou, and metro back home.  Duck for dinner, and repackaging the sausages to freeze from our butcher who is going on vacation.

JD's birthday
Vincent blew the balloons up the night before.  A visit to the Rodin exhibit and Gardens exhibit at the Grand Palais.  Lunch at Mandalay in Levallois.  Chocolate birthday cake with lots of candles!


Friday, July 14, 2017

La fête nationale 14 Juillet (Bastille Day)

you can actually see "Armee de L'Air" written underneath the planes
pictures
Walked to watch the military planes fly over Paris for the annual Bastille Day parade (the French call it La fête nationale).  The parade is on the other side of the avenue down the Champs-Elysees.  Great weather, it never ceases to be exciting to see all those cool military airplanes flying directly overhead!

"President Donald Trump watched U.S. and French soldiers march together through the Paris sunshine on Friday in a double celebration marking 100 years since the United States entered World War One and France's annual Bastille Day holiday.

The Paris parade this year marked the centenary of the United States entering World War I in 1917 and featured 63 planes, 29 helicopters, 241 horses and 3,720 soldiers, including US troops dressed in the brown uniform and gaiters of the Great War.

By the end of the 1914-1918 war, more than a million U.S. troops were stationed in France alongside soldiers of French, British and other nationalities fighting Germany.

One marching group evoked another military landmark of Franco-American history, carrying a pennant marked "Fregate Lafayette", a frigate of the French navy named after the 18th century French aristocrat general Marquis de Lafayette, who helped in the American Revolutionary War against the British."

JD's really good pictures

underside of the US Thunderbird jets-

dropping the tri-colors movie
a bit wobbly at first it gets better

helicopters


formation list



Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Lee & Amy in Paris, JD sings in a basement


Lee & Amy pictures
Lee and Amy, good friends for a long time (JD met Lee in 1995 at PFCU) were in town with their daughters for the start of their grand France vacation.  We had a nice dinner at Vagenende where Vincent lost his first front tooth on the escargots.  Then we met up with Lee and the girls again on Sunday night for drinks at the Pont d'Alma, and an unplanned but fortuitous trip to the new Five Guys on the Champs-Elysees - 3 stories and they sell beer, I am used to the one in Maryland that does not sell alcohol.

A walk around the Arc de Triomphe, a metro ride back down to see the twinkling Eiffel Tower.  We had so much fun and were sad to say goodbye, no one more so than Vincent, who was sad for 3 days.  I know because he told me.

singing in basement pictures
JD's singing teacher participates in an amateur singing night at a Turkish restaurant Le Kibele in the 10th arrondissement in Paris.  JD was invited to join this month.  There were at 10 performers I don't have pictures of all.  Funny it occured on July 4th.  The Americans sang "The Star Spangled Banner" afterwards.  Restaurant is really good too.  We stayed to eat.  I mostly took a video so not that many pictures of JD.

JD singing 1

JD singing 2

Vincent was really taken with Nia and Caty -


Sunday, July 09, 2017

end of school, Alex off to camp!


last day of school
July 7th - It was hot!  After school we enjoyed some cool drinks and food outside at our new favorite spot around the corner, a tapas bar and restaurant some folks we know opened.

off to camp
Alex heads to camp.  Mahanetzer 4, two and a half weeks in the south of France in Gaillac, northeast of Toulouse.  We dropped him at the train station Sunday morning.  He was very excited to go, he went two years ago and had a great time.  Vincent was sad to say goodbye to his brother.

playground
Then we headed back into town to the Jardin du Luxembourg for some fun at the playground, then lunch and back home.

swing video 1

swing video 2

swing video 3

swing video 4

swing video 5

cool swing in the Jardin du Luxembourg playground -

Wednesday, July 05, 2017

Vincent - parade at school

pictures
Vincent's class was the third class to come outside - it's an astronaut parade!

Annual end of school parade at Vincent's school (the maternelle).  His class made their astronaut costumes and were playing the drums.  They paraded around the block, through the park, and back through the elementary school next door where Alex was.  So cute!  Then we had sushi for lunch.

2 more days of Grand Section (kindergarten) for Vincent, then on to CP (first grade) at the elementary school next door.  And Alex is off to 6th grade at the "college", in another part of town.

parade video 1

parade video 2

parade video 3

JD pictures  finally!

This is Eva his "amoureuse".  He was sad she is going to another elementary school next year.




Sunday, July 02, 2017

Vincent 2nd front tooth gone!

It was the escargots at Vagenende during our dinner with Lee and Amy that did it!