February

I didn’t post that much in February, but looking back now, I realized that a lot actually happened in this last month. You know, the normal things… ski trips, coffees in Paris, seeing a few van Gogh’s, Monet’s and van Rijn’s… just everyday things. : )

Jaco and Pieter went with their school on a ski trip to Valloire. The trip was organized by the sport and engineering sciences teachers. We dropped them off at 6am in the morning at the school. A few brave parents waited in the freezing cold to see the bus leave.

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They stayed in the ski village and did snowboarding everyday from Monday to Friday.

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To justify the science part, they had a look at exactly how the ski lift works.  A quick visit on Wednesday morning for that. : )

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What an amazing experience for them. Remember, we don’t even know snow! : )

The gymnastics season has started again. This time with new coaches and new friends. For Franci the biggest excitement of the competition was to see the Cergy’m coaches again.

Its only Franci doing competitions this year as Mandi has quit gymnastics and started doing tumbling with Pieter in Les Clayes sous Bois. Finishing school at four and then do gymnastics till 10pm in the evening was just too much, but she is really enjoying the new tumbling club. Loving the coach again. Alfie, the coach from ACS, Cape Town is still the measure for coaches. She loves Rene, the tumbling coach: ‘he is so nice, he is just like Alfie’ .

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I decided that I have to start visiting exhibitions in Paris. I don’t know if you can ever see everything of this city, I also don’t think you can ever get to all exhibitions.   In October the works of Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera will be on display in the Orangerie. Won’t that be so special to see? Anyone visiting me to see that? For know I saw van Gogh’s works in the exhibition at the Pinacothèque, ‘Dreaming of Japan’. Having a coffee afterwards with a view on the beautiful église de la Madeleine.

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Not without excitement. : ) Seeing all the people buying flowers across the road at the florist. The police stopped the little red van and had long conversations looking at lots of papers. I wonder what he did wrong. The french are serious about paperwork!  Then an ambulance stopped and after a while they came with a lady in a wheelchair who had one foot wrapped in bandages and her husband, walking with them, carrying the shoe, which was covered in white paint. So was the clothes of the lady. Wondering what happened to her. I knew she slipped somewhere near white paint. Not too serious as the whole company was talking and smiling, including her. : )

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It was of course a cold February day again, but then the sun came out and I just walked around and passed the Notre Dame. Seeing there was no queue, I decided to go in. Inside I could see the new bells on display. Apparently the old bells,which was installed in 1856 were badly out-of-tune.

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The new bells are now being installed for the 850th anniversary of the Notre Dame. They will be rung for the first time on Sunday 23 March 2013. Maybe a good idea to be close-by having a coffee and be part of that special moment.
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 Across the Seine from the Notre Dame, getting lost in the very old Shakespeare and company. Books everywhere, under stairs, above doors and so high on the walls, that they provide ladders to reach the top ones. : ) And rooms with chairs to sit and read.

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… and that was some highlights of February. March will have its own things again. School closes on Friday for a two week holiday. And we’re off to Interlaken in Switzerland for a week. This time I’ll be the photographer for the snowboarders. : )

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Four days with the Stanvliets!

The Stanvliet family from South-Africa visited us in January and I think we had more fun watching them enjoy Paris as they had enjoying Paris. : ) Yes, it was four wonderful, happy days we spent with them.
A night with no sleep on the plane didn’t put anyone off from starting to explore Paris early morning.

after a Starbucks coffee everyone was ready to get in the metro… there are lots to see…

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first stop… Eiffel Tower!

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friends… in Paris : )

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there are little shops to enjoy on the way to the Sacre Coeur…

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Montmartre

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Portraits at Montmartre… Emma

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Mika…

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Moulin Rouge… No its not Marilyn… its Jana & Emma!

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Jana made us dinner… with the help of the rest…

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Waiting for the train in Beynes… today we go up the Eiffel Tower!

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Me and Danie waited for the lift, but of course the rest of them took the stairs!

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Maybe one day the girls will be back with someone special to add their own locks… : )

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Ettienne, Ruida, Mika, Emma en Jana. Dankie vir die lekker kuier. Ons is so bly julle het nie Rome toe gegaan nie. : ) 

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By ButterflyHands Posted in Paris

Celebrations… in the snow

The last week in January is our week for celebrating. There’s a wedding anniversary, 28 years already! The boys’ birthday four days later and Franci just the next day. All nicely fitted into one week. We spread the parties over two weeks, just so we can take a breathe between all this celebrating. : )
This year we had some nice snow to add to the celebrations. Very different from the swimming parties we were used to in Cape Town.
Where we live in France it doesn’t snow that often, which is nice. Its not only us South-Africans that are excited about the snow, the locals enjoy it as well. Everybody is outside, the children are playing in the snow and you see all kinds of things that are used to slide with. : )

early morning…
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Franci’s party… if you don’t understand the cake, it is ok, it just shows that you don’t play minecraft. Ok, if you don’t know what minecraft is… ok, you don’t play computer games… it’s fine… : )

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Franci and Manon…

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family fun!!

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The neighbours told us that the place to go is the hill behind the station.

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The friendly Brigitte and Jacques borrowed us their wooden sledge that he still built for his kids 20 years ago…

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even more fun…

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The boys still have the same birthday parties as they had in South Africa. You invite a bunch of guys. Eat sausage rolls… ok, this was different. Any boy in Cape Town will just without thinking cut his roll and add the sausage in the middle. Here we had to do a bit of explaning….

Boerewors rolls, french style…

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and waffles… which needed less explaning, although its not a french thing either : ) 

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Now we need to take a good break to be ready to celebrate Danie’s 50th in June… Boerewors rolls… no maybe that should be something bigger.  : )