The Enormous Golden Key

Official move-out day has finally arrived. Tonight we’ll be doing what they call the Etat des Lieux and giving the keys back to the owner at our old apartment.  When you rent in France you have two important pieces of paper: Contrat de Location and Etat des Lieux. The first is easy- it’s your contract.  […]


There’s a chocolate dessert in France called a mi-cuit, which literally means “half-cooked.” When you cut into the small round cake, it oozes with dark, rich chocolate. Mi-cuit is also the nickname I’ve given our new kitchen. That doesn’t mean it’s oozing with warm dessert- far from it. In fact, for the last couple weeks […]

Caves, Castles and…Asparagus (Part 4)

Here’s one last post in my series on the Loire Valley. Now that we’ve seen where we stayed and what we saw, this one’s about what we ate. Part 4: Asparagus Invasion A primeur is a young fruit or vegetable that starts off the season. This is what we were eating during our trip in […]

Caves, Castles and…Asparagus (Part 3)

This is the third post in my series on the Loire Valley. Like this one, the last post was on a castle and the first one about a bed & breakfast. Part 3: Warning: Medieval Obsession! As many of my friends know, I’m slightly obsessed (no, much more than slightly) with medieval history. That’s surely […]

Soon-to-be Kitchen

The first thing we did Saturday morning was measure our soon-to-be kitchen. Five feet by nine feet may not sound like much, but it feels enormous compared to our current cuisine. The room still smells of fresh paint and rings with the sound of empty space. As with many unfurnished apartments in Paris, ours comes […]

Caves, Castles and…Asparagus (Part 2)

This is the second in a series of posts on our recent trip to the Loire Valley. The first one was about the cave we slept in. In the next two posts, I’ll be talking about castles. Part 2: Leave your guidebook at home Our travel guides on France have started getting tattered- we tend […]