Rabbit recipe + How to say DEADLINE in French?
Droit au but: Smokey update

Come to our winetasting Apr. 20th + Smokey's lump

Jean-Marc, laboring his 1st year vines. He is pushing a motorized plow, or motoculteur avec charrue, the idea being the plow would do most of the work. But as I snapped this photo from the upper field, I heard a lot of French cussing as my husband struggled to direct his new and unweildy assistant....

Please come to our home, this Monday, 3p.m. for the first dégustation of the season! 10 euro fee. We will try three wines and enjoy some snacks out on our balcony. We will also all lay hands on Smokey! So please come, and help cheer our littlest golden. Please send your confirmation message to me at kristin.espinasse@gmail.com

Déguster (day-goos-tay)

    : to taste


Beautifully renovated and decorated home in the Luberon. 4 bedrooms and a study with a sofa bed, each with ensuite (full) bath. This villa comfortably sleeps 7-9 adults.

: Listen to Jean-Marc pronounce the following French words: 
Download Deguster or Wav file
Venez déguster mon vin rosé le vingt avril. A bientôt!
Come try my rosé wine this April 20th. See you soon!

Improve your French pronunciation with the Exercises in French phonetics book. Click here. 

A DAY IN A FRENCH LIFE... by Kristin Espinasse

Smokey could use your thoughts and prayers at this moment, as he is currently in surgery for the removal of a méchant lump (a "mean" lump, as the doctor noted, on examing the bleeding, golf-ball size mass which grew rapidly over the past week).

Our wonder dog came into this world after his mother disappeared for a day in the bustling streets of Marseilles. She returned with a big surprise. Les chiots. Puppies!



We kept Smokey, the only male in a litter of girls, but almost lost him at the age of 2 months -- when he was attacked by two big dogs

Smokey was stapled back together and has learned to live with his handicap (a tongue that hangs out perpetually, making it difficult for him to eat; his astuce, or trick is to chew on his wrists after his meal. Perhaps the chewing produces extra saliva which helps to digest all the croquettes that are stuck in his throat...

Then there was The Attack of the Provencale Vineyard Monster (probably a wild boar, or sanglier, defending her babies). The unlucky run-in left Smokey with giant holes in his already lopsided face. Once again, he was stitched back together.

My dog and I even had joint accidents as in last November, while out on a walk. When a guard dog in a fenced yard burst out of the bushes, Smokey went flying, dislocating my elbow when I could not leg go of the leash


So now one of us has a crooked arm and the other, a crooked face. And up until now, we have been thrilled to walk this crooked path together. Because isn't that the way life is: never straight ahead - always an unexpected bend in the road.

Braise and Smokey, golden retriever dogs
                Smokey and Mama Breizh

Le tout, the most important, is to help each other along as best we can. To be gentle to each other, to find the kind word. To love, forgive, and to sacrifice. Nothing else matters. Everything else makes it difficult to practice these virtues.

Why does it always take a crisis to remember the essential? And then why do we blame ourselves for the fate of our loved ones?

Mon Smokey! You have helped yourself to heal in so many ways. Please, oh, please, use all your wonder dog powers to heal  today


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Smokey. Photo taken three years ago. But he had that same uncertain look on his face this morning. Please keep our golden boy in your thoughts. Merci beaucoup!

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