Sunday, December 04, 2016

Dreaming of France -- Alps


Thank you for joining this weekly meme. Grab a copy of the photo above and link back to An Accidental Blog. Share with the rest of us your passion for France. Did you read a good book set in France? See a movie? Take a photo in France? Have an adventure? Eat a fabulous meal or even just a pastry? Or if you're in France now, go ahead and lord it over the rest of us. We can take it

I don't know about you, but nothing feels quite as Christmas-y as the snow-covered Alps.

I've never actually visited the Alps during Christmas time, but it's on my list of places to visit.
Hope you're enjoying the preparations for the holiday season.
Thanks for playing along with Dreaming of France. Please leave your name and blog address in Mr. Linky below, and leave a comment letting me know what  you think about my love affair with France, or your own passion for the country and its people and cultures. Also consider visiting the blogs of others who play along so we can all share the love.

Thursday, December 01, 2016

FOMO

This morning, my eyes popped open early, sometime between 5 and 6 a.m. My initial reaction to waking up is to hop out of bed. Most  mornings, I go for a run, or walk with a friend, or stumble to my computer to write.
But I had decided to try to stay in bed longer this morning to snuggle with my husband.
So after I got up to go to the bathroom, I returned to bed. I gave my husband a brief backrub and tried to quiet my mind to lie still for another hour or so until my husband got up to get ready for work.
"Oh, like it's so hard to stay in bed," he teased as he kissed and went to get ready for work.
But it is for me. When I wake up, I have a surge of energy. I want to see what has happened in the world while I slept.
I had no idea there was a name for this urge until I caught my college son up at 9 a.m. on Saturday. The big football game was scheduled for noon so he was busy on his phone texting friends.
"Why are you up so early?" I asked him.
"FOMO," he said. "Fear of Missing Out!"
Oh! That's what I have. That's why I can never sleep in. What if I'm missing something fun?
On Tuesday, I woke up and checked the weather app. Rain had been predicted but, joyously, I saw cloudy skies.
"No rain!" I said.
"No wind," my husband muttered.
Which only reminded me of the song, "Ain't No Mountain High Enough." So I jumped out of bed singing the song.
"No wind, no rain
Or winters cold can stop me baby"
My husband rolled his eyes, but he loves me.



How bout you? Do you have FOMO or do you like to sleep in?

Sunday, November 27, 2016

Dreaming of France -- What do you love about France?


Thank you for joining this weekly meme. Grab a copy of the photo above and link back to An Accidental Blog. Share with the rest of us your passion for France. Did you read a good book set in France? See a movie? Take a photo in France? Have an adventure? Eat a fabulous meal or even just a pastry? Or if you're in France now, go ahead and lord it over the rest of us. We can take it.

This morning, as I drove my college son back to college, because he had missed his bus, he asked me why his father and I hate the U.S.
"We don't hate the U.S.," I hastily said, and he knew that already.
We don't want to move to France because we are unhappy with the United States, we want to move to France because we love it.
Mostly, people could say, "Of course, you love France. You've only been there on vacation."
But I did spend three months in France working as an au pair, so I have some experience working in France.
While there, traveling from Corsica to Bourges, we spent a few days in Aix en Provence. A relative we were staying with, took me to the main street of Aix -- the Cours Mirabeau, and while we explored shops along this street, I had a strange tugging at my heartstrings, as if this was the place I belonged.
I've felt that every time we traveled there.
Here's a plaza in Aix en Provence
We also appreciate the culture in France -- the importance of long, slow meals. The emphasis put on education and music and art. The value of spending time with family and friends.
Enjoying dinner at a Moroccan restaurant with friends in Aix en Provence. 

A musical interlude by our friends' children. 
 And all of these things draw us to France without even talking about the food and wine.

Without even considering the beauty of the diverse scenery throughout France and the glory of the history.
We biked across the Pont du Gard, a Roman-built aqueduct in southern France. 

We realize how fortunate we are to live in the United States, to have been able to raise our family here, to earn a good living that may allow us to move to France in the coming year.
What do you love about France?

Thanks for playing along with Dreaming of France. Please leave your name and blog address in Mr. Linky below, and leave a comment letting me know what  you think about my love affair with France, or your own passion for the country and its people and cultures. Also consider visiting the blogs of others who play along so we can all share the love.

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Student Musings

I've only done the bare minimum on my blog recently, which usually means Dreaming of France, and sometimes Tuesday Intros, just because books are still available to distract us from things.
Of course, I'm still teaching college (university) and the students frequently either infuriate me or delight me.
Like the student last Friday who walked up to the desk to turn in his assignment.
Student: I just wrote down some ideas instead of a whole counter argument paragraph.
Me: That was the whole point to write the counterargument and the rebuttal.
Student: Oh, I wasn't really listening.
Me: (tearing my hair out)
We only had class on Monday this week because of Thanksgiving (Lucky me!).
This is a class selfie from a long ago class. My current classes
have 15 to 20 students in them, but it's the only class picture I have.
One of my students, Tyler, who has missed a lot of classes, stood in front of my desk with an essay in his hand. "I'm so sick. The only reason I'm here is because of you," he said. I could tell that he had a cold, runny nose, sneezing.
"Well thank you," I responded. Then I added the same thing I tell my children, "If you make sure you don't miss classes unless you're sick or an it's emergency then it isn't a big deal when you do miss because you have a cold."
As he started to walk back to his desk, I called out, "One of the students in my 8 o'clock class has chemotherapy every week and he's still in class every day, but thanks for coming while you have a cold."
Nothing like a little guilt to make students feel bad.

I don't want you to think that all of my students are slackers though. I was chatting with my class about how happy I was to spend Thanksgiving with only my husband and my three children. I said that after dinner, we'd have game night. Then I pondered how happy my 24-year-old, 23-year-old and 20-year-old would be to stay home and play games with their family.
"Wow! You have kids that old?" one young female student asked. "I thought you were like 30."
Her grade is now being adjusted upward.

The semester is nearly over now, three more weeks,
and aside from one student who emailed to complain that I shouldn't have talked to the class about the election, my students have pretty much been a delight this semester.
Hope it's the same in January when we start all over again.