"Cuttings"(c) Kristin Espinasse. The bright orange leaves, fallen, along with their newly-cut branches, are like flames over nature's snowy moquette de fleurs.

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bibi (bee bee) pronoun

    : yours truly, me

Audio File & Example Sentence: Download Wav or Download MP3

Cette année, la dinde et les marrons c'est pour bibi. A moi la lourde tâche de recevoir dans la joie, la bonne humeur - et la déco adéquate bien-sûr. This year, the turkey and the chestnuts are for yours truly. Up to me the heavy chore of receiving in joy, in good humor -- and with adequate decor, of course!
                --from "Bientôt les Fêtes : 10 astuces pour décorer ma maison

Questions for Bibi...
Today: a Question & Answers section!  Here is a recent question, received just last night, from Roseann:

Kristin- Do you live in a postcard shop? What is that thing to your left in the jumping photos? It looks like one of those twirl-around stands with postcards on it......... Roseann

Hi Roseann, Re that thing in the jumping photos, several people, including Laura and Christine, asked the same question, wondering, of the diversified decor, "Are you in a restaurant?".


Though it is unlikely that I would wear my house robe to a restaurant (or, d'ailleurs, to a postcard shop...) only to set up hurdles and then jump over them, I will always aspire to greater heights of creative, cut-past-the-status-quo country life. Having only just set out on the path to unselfconsciousness... I am finding that the road to une vie sans gêne is a l-o-n-g one!

Currently, I am only comfortable wearing my bathrobe in my own bercail--or, à la limite--as far as the end of our front porch.

But, to finally answer your question...

=> No I do not live in a postcard shop (though, living in a postcard shop, whether in Phoenix or Paris, would be cool!); the photo was taken in our kitchen and partly in our front hall.

The postcard rack was a $25 find at a troc shop, in Draguignan. It doubles as a tall and twirlable photo display where family and friends are welcome to leave their photos close to our hearts (which are often in the kitchen, near the wine-for-him, chocolate-for her, cookies-and-kibbles for them, both kids and chiens): thus the strategic placement of the photo stand).

My turn to ask you all a question...
(Note to newsletter readers: Please click over to the blog to answer--and to see other answers!):

Comments and corrections are most welcome. Do you have more "Questions for Bibi"? Add them to the comments section.

French Vocabulary

une moquette (f) de fleurs = carpet of flowers; d'ailleurs = for that matter; une vie (f) sans gêne = a life without self-consciousness; le bercail (m) = fold (synonym for "home"); à la limite = at most; le troc (m) = second-hand shop; le chien (m) = dog

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Current state of the Provençale landscape... it's pruning time! Fiery leaves on nature's floor... white "mustard" flowers, scented "snow" galore.

Tra-la-la! Summer's scorched grass is gone... the flowers are back! I love to tip-toe over the fallen petals, Smokey says, after my latest edible attack!


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Alyssa Eppich

In addition to the poll amusant, I absolutely love the pictures of the vineyards that you posted here. It's the color composition that catches my eye and keeps it riveted; cream, and brown and burnt orange(siena?) are a wonderful combination at this time of year. Thank you-and at our American Thanksgiving, thanks to you and your family for your comments, pictures, posts and stories at French-Word-A-Day this year and every year.

Pat Cargill

Today's photo is so beautiful. I love the dark, twisted ancient-looking vines, empty of all their lucious fruit, stretching their arms up to the skies, celebrating another good year of production! The contrast w/the flowers is perfect.

Have fun cooking the Big Meal de l'annee! I'm waiting for the pecan and pumpkin pies. Cheers and thanks for the fun you give us here at French Word a Day!

Evelyn Jackson

Kristen...your postcard rack is a great idea for photo display...tres unique. I adore postcards and have a ga-zillion of them. I often buy them instead of taking photos on my trips to France...better pictures of those forbidden galleries, interiors of famous places, etc. I'm going to hang as many as I can on my Christmas tree this year!

poppy fields

Ssshh, don't tell, but I walk our dog Duffy (a golden/spaniel mix) at night in my pj's and house robe. So far, I haven't been found out.


Living in the country, I can walk over the hill to the pond, which is secluded, in any state I want. So none of your choices quite fit. :-)


Ok, I totally laughed out loud when I read "While it is unlikely that I would wear my house robe to a restaurant (or, d'ailleurs, to a postcard shop...) only to set up hurdles and then jump over them" It just struck my funny bone thinking that you would go to a restaurant in your robe and set up hurdles. Too cute! I want you to know that I read all your blog posts but I don't always leave a comment. I have you set up in my google reader and I don't miss a post! I enjoy your writing and your humor! Keep up the good work:) Happy Thanksgiving to my American friend in France!

Leslie in Massachusetts

Quelle belle photo ! D'ailleurs, je suis allée au site C'est intéréssant pour ceux qui aiment lire en français, comme moi. Merci pour le lien. Il fait gris mais pas trop froid ici dans le Massachusetts. What a beautiful photograph! Also, I went to the site It's interesting for those of us who like to read in French, like me. Thanks for the link! It's grey but not too cold here in Massachusetts.


Ah! A postcard rack for photos. What a wonderful idea. And it could be the center of a party ... a new ice breaker of sorts. This would be a great way to share photos of a vacation ... let your guests wander through them, plucking what interests them and then asking you about the moment, the place, the people ... rather than going through a photo album or sitting through a digital slide show. Thank you Kristin for une bonne idee.


While, in my neighborhood, I would only dare advance to the end of my porch sporting my pj's, if in your neighborhood, where the only snoopy neighbors were rows and rows of crotchety looking grape vines, I might venture a bit further.

Bill in St. Paul

The photo of the vineyard looks like a painting with the stark browns of the vines against the colors of the flowers (weeds?).

It's great to see Smokey looking so good - way to go, nurse Kristin!

Finally, we're going to get some snow, just in time for Thanksgiving - overcast and 37 degrees with a projected high of only 39.

Edmond Spaeth

moquette de fleurs -- While I read and enjoy your French word-a-day, the above expression particularly caught my eye, not only for the unique photo of the flowers, but the word moquette. As a boy growing up in Yonkers, NY, I lived high on a hill above the world's largest carpet factory -Alexander Smith and Sons and opposite the factory were two streets of row houses designed especially as living quarters for some of the factory workers. Those streets were named Moquette Row north and south respectively. At the time I thought the word "moquette" an odd word but never knew its meaning, but now 50 years later, your French word-a-day has granted me enlightenment and explains that word so clearly and so well. Thank you.

Patricia Anzalone

I always noted your "post card" cart, now we know! Great idea!
When Smokey walks in the fields, is he ever near where he was attacked? Where are the attacking dogs? Do they still roam? If the area is farther down the way, does Smokey ever venture into that territory?
Still drizzly/dreary in northwestern Virginia -- 55 degrees.
Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

Amelie Kase

Since April we live in an apartment in Paris where the women never go out without makeup, jewelry, beautiful, functional scarves and never jeans or knit pants. So I probably would not even answer my front door on the 4th floor in my robe. At home in Palo Alto I used to walk in my robe to the end of the driveway to pick up the newspaper in the morning.

One idea for some vocabulary, Kristin - I have heard French speakers refer to the "false friends" of French and English, ie those words that have similar spelling in both languages but dissimilar meaning.

Amelie in Paris where it is overcast and occasionally drizzly, but not very cold.


Do you know Phoenix Daily Photo?

I'm honored to be mentioned in today's blog......



Ah - but there is another variable that makes a huge difference. How late at night is it? I have walked the neighborhood and around an apartment building in the wee small hours in my bathrobe and slippers!


Beautiful pictures Kristi! Color, composition... love the perspective on the second one (vineyard).

Didn’t have time to comment on your last post but I absolutely love the sequence of photos of the jumping concours... left me with a “warm” smile :)
Felicidades Jackie!

Actually my husband calls me the “PJ woman” just because I love them and I’m always looking for a cuter-comfier one, and also because usually right after work I go upstairs and change into my pj´s and relax.

Since we are not Americans, we don’t really celebrate Thanksgiving but we enjoy the holyday a lot... the food, the tradition, time with friends... this year we are going to spend the long weekend with my family in Monterrey, México... we are leaving tomorrow morning! YAY!

Wish to all of you a Happy Thanksgiving!

Andrea @ Austin, TX 6°C

Candy Witt

Quels beaux photos, Kristin. Thank you for sharing your beautiful perspectives on life - whether through your physical eyes or the eye of your heart. They are always like a gift to your readers/viewers. Wishing a wonderful Thanksgiving weekend to all of you wherever you may be. It's a beautiful sunny (and calm!) day in SW KS.
PS. does anyone have a suggestion for a college French textbook? I may be teaching a class next fall at our local Junior College and am not familiar with college texts (although I taught HS/JHS French for 31 years) Merci for any help you can give.


That picture of the vineyard after prunig with the moquette de fleurs is stunning. I thought for a moment it was a Van Gogh.

I do have a question-- Monday's blog includrd the word "potiron" defined as pumpkin. I have always thought the word for pumpkin was "citrouille". What's the real translation? Do they mean the same thing, or is one more of a squash/gourd?

One of the things I'm thankful for this Thanksgiving is for finding your wonderful blog. First thing le lundi, le mercredi, et le vendredi that I do is sit down at my computer to see what you've written. I'm a huge dog lover, so I follow the exploits of your pups carefully. I'm so relieved that Smokey is doing well. Have you permanently gotten rid of the dogs that attacked him?

From sunny (but somewhat chilly--60 degress F) California, I wish you and your family a very happy Thanksgiving.


The vineyard pictures look like paintings! Remember that man who made paintings of your pictures? I think he should do the first one too, with the building in it.

Simply lovely!

Kristine, dallas

As always, a beautiful post today both in word and picture!

Happy Thanksgiving to the American in France who wears her robe to jump hurdles!

It's going to be sunny and 68ish today in Dallas~ still wearing my sandels/flip flops!


Edmond - I so enjoyed reading your note about Moquette row. Merci.

Mary and Patricia : Yes, Smokey has returned to the area in which he was attacked. I don't think he realizes what happened there. As for the two dogs, we found out who they belonged to and reported the incident to the police. The dogs are behind bars (that is, safely contained in their yard. These were not pit bulls or similar dogs, but they were attack dogs non-the-less, to our Smokey). The owners are paying for our vet bills.

Re potiron/citrouille -- can somebody help with this one? :-) Is it the citrouille that we carve at Halloween... or the potiron?

Andrea - enjoy your family time in Monterray!

Roseann - thanks for Phx daily photo!

Amelie - I like the false friends idea. We shared some of these some time back -- but we should list them again!

Thanks so much for your positive words about the photo!

Candy - for the French textbooks, check out the top sellers at Amazon (in French instruction) -- I have noticed that the popular text books are listed there. Hope this helps!


Beautiful photos and Smokey is so cute. I have been seen in my PJ's and bathrobe as far as the end of the block, running barefoot after mon chien who decided a little freedom jaunt was in order.

Candy, I am currently taking French 101 at the local University and we are using the text Point de Depart published by Prenhall. There is an accompanying work book and website for audio lessons. The structure of the text is used for French 101, 102 and 201. Hope this is helpful.

Angela Bell

I can't do the poll because my answer is "to the backyard, with my raincoat over them, to let Miss Pup out first thing in the AM." Although I recently heard of a friend (time and place to remain nameless) who wears them to work when she has to go in early on a Saturday morning, when the building is closed!
Angela Bell in Mechanicsburg PA


The photo is unbelievable gorgeous. Your soul must be dancing with joy around the clock. I too noticed the post card rack but thought you bought it because it was interesting, something I would have done if I had any room or a more flexible husband.
I like the Q and A, and I am not one to run out with my robe. You know some things should remain that way, IMHO.
The picture of Smokey is priceless, so adorable with his cheek clay! : )
I hope you have a great Thanksgiving....



I have run across the road in my pj's to catch the garbage truck coming back the other way. It is a narrow road, and,so far, I haven't been caught - it's a very quiet road on Friday mornings at 8:30.


Kristin, the postcard rack for photo display is so cool -- what a great idea!! :)

Karen from Phoenix, AZ

I love the postcard rack for photo display. I always try to find different ways to display different things. That is way cool!

Every Christmas when the kids were little we would all go out in our pj's and robes to meet friends across the street so we could all hear what everyone got for Christmas. Laughing in the middle of the street in our fuzzy slippers and robes. It was such a magical time and now that my dear friend and neighbor passed away it will never be the same.

Sunny and 72 in Phoenix

Bob Haine

I too noticed the postcard rack in the photo, but assumed that perhaps you had a little gift shop attached to your vineyard, where you might have tasting, sell wine glasses, wine accessories, maybe tee-shirts and caps, as many vineyards do here in the U.S.--silly me!
As for wearing pj's, I voted with the majority who feel comfortable walking out to the driveway to get the morning papers. I have to admit that I don't usually wear pj's, living in the mild climate of southern California.
60 F , sunny and a little breezy this morning in Idyllwild, California.

Jean Marc

I believe these vineyard photos are the best shots of yours I have seen to date. They are suitable for poster-sized enlargements for framing (or at least as big as your camera allows - I am kind of assuming it is at least 10M pixels). You have clearly inherited some your mom's talent, even if your brush has a lens on it!

Wish you could be chez nous for Thanksgiving. With un dinde petit (only 16 pounds), crown roast of venison stuffed with sweet potatoes and sausage, duck, smashed potatoes, corn pudding, glazed carrots, asparagus spears, cornbread, baked beans, sweet potato pie, and indian pudding; we will easily have plenty to feed two thirds of Provence. ;)

Jean Marc (l'autre), in southern Michigan where it's grey and drizzly and 46 degrees.

Marta R.

Dear Kristin:
Your idea of the card rack for photos is fabulous. I'll keet that in mind when I see one for sale at a flea market. It's a great way to display them instead of an album or scrapbook. I live in a condo, and usually wear my pajamas with a robe when I go pick up the mail, doing laundry or opening the door to the pizza delivery guy.
Hollywood, FL
currently raining and 69F


I love the image which Karen just presented of 2 families exchanging news on Christmas Day. I stay hidden away as we live on a corner but my husband runs through the backyard(wearing his pj's) almost every AM carrying things to the garage or letting the dog out.
Have a lovely Thanksgiving.

Carole in Denver cool but gloriously sunny!


I think I need a puppy healing update please?

Linda Chandler

Aieee, such beautiful photos! I see dear litte Smokey is happy again. He's smiling.

Merrie Dail, Annapolis, MD

In days of yore(the fifties) in New England, we were expected to be dressed for the day before leaving the second the 21st century, nothing feels better than to cozy into the sofa with early morning sun streaming through the skylights and windows of our 'bumpout' in sleep / loungewear while drinking tea and saying bonjour to the animals, grandson or whoever happens to be up early. I might lean out the door to let the dog out, but I guess old habits die hard. Love the post card holder - what a great idea and one step up from dozens of magnets, drawings and photos on the frigo. Our community college here in Annapolis uses a book / wokbook series called MOTIFS by Kimberly Jansma & Margaret Kassen. Wishing everyone warm wishes and good memories for tomorrow. Dreary again today, low fifties, drizzly and Maisie the dog longs to go for a long walk.


I think I'm going to get a robe just so I can be tempted to chase down our cute letter carrier! I am soooo envious of your postcard rack. It would be perfect for all the postcards I get through Postcrossing and from friends. It's so neat that you have it for your photos. Happy Thanksgiving day, though it's not a French holiday, we've had fine celebrations in France on that day. Enjoy the day, whatever you do. I give thanks that you are in my life. bisous


I was skeptical about the mud cure you employed to halt your dog's infection. Then my physician/francophile husband presented me with this article:

I never discussed your puppy's plight with him. This was merely a coincidence!


What spectacular photos of the vines! I agree that the brown-cream-orange combination is particularly arresting. Don't the vines themselves remind you of (giant) corals? Just gorgeous. And considering the caliber of your other amazing photos, that's saying something, Kristin.

The indoor steeplechase photos and story are delightful, and I've been following Smokey's saga on tenterhooks. Thank you for a wonderful blog.

By the way, we'll be breaking out our last two bottles of Mistral for Thanksgiving, and I will be giving thanks for them! The wine is pure genius.

Happy holidays to all, chez vous.

Betty Bailey

The photos are lovely and look like paintings. I love your idea of the card stand for photos, and would be happy to have one in our home! I wonder if there's one on ebay. I'll have a look!

We are having Shiraz wine tomorrow with our holiday meal. We follow no rules when it comes to wine with this food or that. I'm still hoping to sample Jean Marc's wine and one day will do so at Cafe Rabelais when we are in Houston.

Happy holidays to you and family, and a prayer for Smokey the pup.

JacquelineBrisbane (Oz)

I once ran across the road to stop traffic, in order to help a family of ducks cross the road. A big bus, a truck and several cars had the pleasure of being directed by a dishevelled, camera-bearing madwoman in her dressing gown (Aussie for robe)! Ouai... en peignoir, au milieu de la rue, à 10 heures du matin…
Jacqueline in sultry Queensland. Only 27 Celsius but oppressively overcast.

Christine Jackson

I like the Q&A idea. Still hoping for another update on Smokey soon - good to see him running around. Gorgeous photos too. Wow! What beauty to see out your window everyday. Speaking of photos, I tried to get to your mom's website (after seeing "Pear", I am intrigued, maybe I can buy one or her paintings someday), but it was blocked. Jules, if you are reading this, can you send me your web address?

As for my thinking your kitchen was a restaurant, that was back during le vendage, when you posted the pictures of you and your crew having dinner. The postcard rack did make me think you must have gone into town to have dinner at a restaurant/hotel that also sold postcards. Since then I figured out that it must be your house, but couldn't figure out why you were selling postcards (didn't think to ask about it)! The rack is a great idea though. These days everyone has the digital photo frames, but they're not nearly as tangible.

Jacqueline, that's a great story! How did you have time to grab your camera? (I bet the drivers were wishing they had theirs too, ha ha.)

Happy Thanksgiving to everyone from Salt Lake City where it is cold (high of 45 F) and sunny (as usual).

Christine Jackson

Oh, I forgot to mention that I have driven many a morning carpool in my pajamas. I realized how bad things had gotten one day when one of my kids wouldn't go into school and I actually got out of the car and walked him into school - pretty funny. Thankfully, I have never gotten in an accident or had other reason to get out of the car.

Christine Dashper

Hi Kristin,

The postcard rack is a great idea, beats putting them all over the fridge.

I love your photos Kristin, the get more creative every week. Good to see Smokey is improving too.

Melbourne is humid and thundery today. I planted tomatoes last week and think I may have assisted in breaking the drought! I haven't planted any for years, but in the past whenever I do, we seem to have a cool, wet summer. We have had heaps of rain since last week, so hopefully the theory holds :)

warm wishes


Betty: great idea to look for the postcard racks on ebay! I'm looking for another one too...

Karen and Jacqueline: loved your "Christmas morning" and "Dressing Gown" stories.

Misha: "Giant corals"... I'll never look at winter vines the same way again! (Up till now they have always looked like upside down chicken feet to me....)

Christine: carpooling in your pjs? You are brave!

Paula: Mille mercis for that article. Glad to have it!

Becky: check for your Smokey update in tomorrow's post ... :-)

Happy D-Day (or T-Day) to those who celebrate it!


P.S.: Jean-Marc (l'autre) : could you please send us a doggy bag? Wow: dinner at your place takes the cake!

Renee Pruett

I often wore my PJs to drive my daughter to school. I mean, who would know? Well, one day I had a car accident on the way. No I know who would know.
My father is in the hospital and we are taking turns staying overnight with him. Last week, I walked downstairs to the cafeteria in my PJs. The cashier asked me if I had my patient pass to cover the cost of my meal.....

I am not deterred from traveling in my PJs!


Your photos make me wish I was in Provence right now. How lovely they are.

As for the bathrobe, I will wear it in my yard - we are very secluded - but only once to mail box.

Claudia - Bridgehampton, NY

Being a New Englander too (more specifically a Cape Codder), my experience was identical to Merrie's. We were expected to be completely dressed before ever arriving on the first floor! These days, I'm a little more relaxed, I'll venture just outside the backdoor but not much further. However I wanted to share a magical memory I have of Christmas Eve's in those 1950's. Every Christmas Eve, after dinner and just before we hung our stockings and put out milk and cookies for Santa, we changed into our pajamas and donned our bathrobes and slippers. Mother and Dad would then pile the three of us (all girls) in the back of the station wagon under a big blanket and we would set out to see all of the houses dressed up in Christmas lights. The blackness of the night, the glimmering lights, and the warmth of our blanket all made these times magical, but the indelibility of the memory is rooted in the fact that we were breaking that old New England rule! What fun ... to be breaking the rule with its enforcers!

First day of winter cold under sunny skies here in Bridgehampton, NY.


Every year for the past 10 years, my friends from all over the country get together in January in Los Angeles to celebrate alot of birthdays and we all go to a bar dressed in our pj's, robe and slippers. Even the band that we go to see wears's alot of fun! I flew from San Francisco to Los Angeles (on a dare) in my pj's, robe and slippers and I got quite a few strange looks, but I just laughed as it was all in fun!

Richard Harold Ainsworth

Last week I finished a last minute calendar (2010) job. It involved photographing 12 young ladies twice each (once in the studio and once on location). 24 sessions in 10 days. Each of the girls who were scheduled before noon (about half)came to the studio in their pajamas.
I did not comment until at least the third girl arrived with fluffy pink slippers peeking out under her trench coat. Between the hair and make-up people and the Marketing/P.R. folks they determined that Bibi is seriously out of step with current trends and styles.
Can this be so?

Steadily falling temperatures in beautiful Joliet, IL. Snow is on the way.

Michael F

Ref Thanksgiving
Many years ago, the columnist and humorist Art Buchwald, who died a couple of years ago, wrote an article in which he referred to le Jour de Merci Donnant. The Intl Herald Tribune used to print it each year but not this year. It is, however, on the web:

I hope it amuses you all.

Jacqueline Q. Scott

Dorie -- did you speak of your house in Palo Alto CA ? I knew Stan and Doris Greenbaum in Palo Alto is she your family?

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