I still can't believe this hunka hunka burning love (as one of my endearing readers calls Jean-Marc), yes I couldn't believe it then and now, 23-years later... I still can't believe he loves me. Happy anniversary, Baby. We celebrated our 19-year- wedding anniversary (the date we exchanged religious vows), on Sept 24th. Jean-Marc is reading "Mastering the... Read more →

The family hat. John bought it for Mom, in Mexico. Mom left it to me, in France. Marsha borrowed it in San Remo, and yesterday, while sitting out in the morning sun enjoying our coffee together, Dad asked: may I use your hat? une nappe (nap) : tablecloth, sheet (layer) la nappe phréatique = ground water, water... Read more →

My family and I stole away for a two-day séjour in Italy. C'était dépaysant, as the French say--or a nice "change of scenery". Mas la Monaque - Rent this beautifully restored 17-century farm. Click here for photos un séjour (say-joor) 1. stay 2. living room, family room bon séjour = have a nice stay une carte de... Read more →

Jean-Marc and the Ionian sea in Sicily... where the saline breeze draws you to the salty waters, pleadingly. épingle à cheveux (ay pehngl ah sheuh veuh) n.f. hairpin bend (road, path); switchback Audio: Listen to Jean-Marc pronounce these French words: Download MP3 file Le chemin de terre qui mène vers la mer descend en épingle à cheveux.... Read more →

The French have a colorful word for what we scaredy cats feel. Read on. Photo of Italian door taken in Aciereale, Sicily. Get out and take some photos or keep a point and shoot camera on hand, at all times, and never miss a shot! une peur bleue (per bleuh) : a morbid fear (also, in French... Read more →

If you have not yet done so, you must read Robert Camuto's book "Palmento" (as Jean-Marc does, in the following story!). Read the rave reviews. Photo taken last week at the iCedri B&B in Sicily.... gourmandise (goor mahn deez) noun feminine : a fondness for food J'ai mangé par gourmandise et non pas par faim. I ate... Read more →


Taken at the bed and breakfast in Italy. SmartFrench CD-ROM --"the smart way to learn French" acceuillant,e (listen to the sound clip, below) adjective welcoming, friendly Le véritable poète a pour vocation d'accueillir en lui la splendeur du monde. The true poet's vocation is to welcome within himself the world's splendor. --Johann Wolfgang von Goethe My high... Read more →

Not far from Ventimiglia, is the quiet village of Coldirodi. In A Paris Moment by Meredith Mullins "... makes us want to rush out and look at the world, not just Paris, but all the world." --Mary Pope Osborne une contrefaçon (kontr-fah-sahn) noun, feminine 1. imitation, counterfeit, counterfeiting 2. forging, forgery, fabrication, infringement 3. pirating Contrefaçon comes... Read more →


dépayser (day-pay-ee-zay) verb 1. to disorientate, to disorient 2. to give a change of scenery to; to give a welcome change of surroundings to Also: dépaysant,e = exotic dépaysé = out of one's element un dépaysement = a disorientation Expressions: sentir dépaysé = to feel like a fish out of water; to not feel at home Citation... Read more →