To Paris! Day Two! Part Two!

223 1024x682 To Paris! Day Two! Part Two!

I’m convinced that Paris is a city for wanderers. Not the “I’m-going-to-hike-through-the-desert-and-the-Amazon-wearing-my-sweaty-bandana-and-carrying-a-walking-stick” kind of wanderer. More like the “I-wonder-where-this-road-leads-to” kind of wanderer. While filming, we wandered from bakeries, to bookstores, to parks, to bridges…just exploring the beautiful maze that is Paris. Eating lunch along the Seine reminded me of the good ol’ Mississippi back home, and I’d laugh at Darrin whenever he’d threaten to ask for an American cheeseburger at dinner. I mean, a guy can only last for so long without wanting a greasy-food meal, ya know? icon wink To Paris! Day Two! Part Two!

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455 1024x682 To Paris! Day Two! Part Two!

I tried snails for the first time in my life and loved ‘em. They were garlicky, buttery, and a whole lot less “soupy” {more “meaty,” actually} than I imagined them to be. Darrin, even though he craves a frozen pizza or a McDonald’s hamburger more often than not, is always trying to expand my “food horizons” by forcing me to try new things. He was pretty impressed by my decision to share a few snails, to say the least. Hopefully this means that he’ll stop trying to convince me to like tuna….there are just some fish that don’t make the grade. For me, tuna is at the top of that list. Sorry to tuna-lovers everywhere.

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There were so many breathtaking views as we wandered through the city that I kept stopping for a moment lean on the bridge and absorb as much of the scene as I could….and maybe snap a phone picture or two in case that whole “absorbing” thing didn’t work. I’m sure Martin, the camera man who followed me the most, got lots of footage of me holding up my phone to take a picture of something while sporting my dorky “This is crazy and beautiful and I’m freaking out with excitement” face. I suppose it’s a classic look for me.

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As you can tell from these bajillion pictures, we spent the day wandering almost everywhere in Paris. The Louvre was so beautiful {more on that later!}, and the view from the Sacré-Coeur Basilica was picturesque. I could have sat on that hilltop all afternoon, staring out at the city, and obviously eating a bag of macarons. Next time, Paris.

Thanks for reading! icon smile To Paris! Day Two! Part Two!

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To Paris! Day Two! Part One!

066 1024x682 To Paris! Day Two! Part One!

065 1024x682 To Paris! Day Two! Part One!

Well, I had to break up my busy time in Paris into two posts because I was a bit afraid I’d break this little blog with a picture overload…so here’s part one!

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We had such beautiful weather during the entire trip, which definitely made walking around the city more enjoyable. If you’re taking a little vacation to Paris, make sure to bring a good pair of walking shoes…or a whole lot of thick socks and band-aids. We spent almost the entire walking from place to place and winding our way over bridges and through alleyways. Because I was there working with the gang from Rosetta Stone, I wore this fuzzy microphone the entire day so they could record me practicing French and finding my way around the city. It was pretty funny walking down the streets with one or two camera men trailing behind me. I tried to “look cool” and show them “my good side,” but I’m too much of a dork and was way too excited about the places we visited to even remember that the cameras were rolling. Darrin followed behind us and took the majority of these pictures, so three cheers for a rockin’ husband who documented the entire trip beautifully! I’m thinkin’ he may need to start his own photography business. We’ll call it “Darebear Photography.” I’m sure he’d love that. icon wink To Paris! Day Two! Part One!

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I’ll admit that I was both excited and somewhat internally freaking out about the prospect of speaking French all day. It’s one thing to practice a language on your comfy red couch, wearing your pajamas, drinking a glass of wine, while Snapchatting goofy pictures to your sisters in Iowa {I promise that doesn’t happen every time… icon wink To Paris! Day Two! Part One! }. But transporting yourself to Paris and trying to buy a full tray of pastries pastry while sounding somewhat intelligent is a completely different story. One particular cashier at Au Petit Versailles du Marais was so sweet and patient with me. He spoke both French and English, which was helpful when I was trying to learn a few of his phrases that were a bit confusing. The marvelous men behind the cameras were from Sweden, so my little language adventure had me thinking in English, speaking in French, and listening to both French and Swedish. To be immersed in so many languages at one time was literally and figuratively “mind-boggling.” And I loved every second of it.

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On a different note, Darrin and I were a bit astonished to learn that the boys from Sweden had never before eaten Swedish Fish, so we made sure to “expand their horizons” and fix that problem real fast by bringing some Swedish Fish to the airport. Good thing they had me around to introduce them to their country’s most famous dish! icon wink To Paris! Day Two! Part One!

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I’ll share more pictures and stories soon! Thanks for reading and putting up with all of my photos! It’s so fun to share this experience with you guys. Learning a second language can be pretty freaking difficult, but there’s a very particular sense of accomplishment that you feel once you’ve mastered even just a couple words and phrases. Can’t wait to share some more pictures with ya! icon smile To Paris! Day Two! Part One!

Have a beautiful rest of your day!

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To Paris! Night One!

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Happy Tuesday! Here are a few pictures from our first night in Paris! After a long flight with a number of different connections, I was so happy to not only be in Paris but to also have the ability to stretch my arms and legs as much as I pleased! After 10 hours of flying, there comes a time in every traveler’s life when you just have to get. off. the. plane. And I can only enjoy the obnoxiously loud snoring from the man sitting behind me for so long.

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We stayed at Les Jardins du Marais, which was a beautiful little hotel {more pictures on that tomorrow!} tucked within the city. After checking into our room, dozing for a half hour to recover from our numerous time zone changes and immediate jet-lag, we hit the town! I was not expecting to race around the city for as long as we did, with the camera boys following me around to capture my reactions {which were a bit enthused and touristy, to say the leasticon wink To Paris! Night One! }, but my adrenaline and excitement was pumping, so we thought we’d ride that train for as long as it lasted.

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004 682x1024 To Paris! Night One!

We explored this little sea food stand where the Frenchmen behind the counter proceeded to laugh while convincing me that the crabs they were selling were very much alive, just a bit frozen. I’ll admit that all of the eyes staring back at me from those seafood platters was just a bit creepy. My “typical meal” doesn’t usually gaze back…but the guys behind the counter were sweet and didn’t throw their fish in frustration as I tried to use my broken French, so I’d call us friends now.

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The architecture throughout Paris is absolutely beautiful. I’ve got so many more pictures to share of our daytime adventures, but the evening walks throughout the city still seemed to highlight the charming buildings and cobblestone streets. We did lots of walking throughout the trip, and I couldn’t help bouncing from one street corner to the next, getting somewhat lost among a beautiful maze of old streets and architecture. As beautiful as the Eiffel Tower is during the day, it is incredibly stunning on a clear night. We found the perfect viewing spot that overlooked the park and pond beneath the tower, and we were in an area that lacked all of those tourist crowds {even though I expressed my most touristy “Ooos” and “Aahs” as I stared at that beautiful landmark}. It was amazing! The Eiffel Tower started sparkling when the clock struck 1am, and then it was turned off for the rest of the night. This, apparently, happens every night, but in that moment I was convinced that the French government knew I was coming to Paris so they put on a little light-show for me and the Rosetta Stone gang. A bit unrealistic, I know…but so is traveling to Paris for the weekend. icon wink To Paris! Night One! Whatever the case, I was not expecting to be as amazed by the Eiffel Tower as I was. To be in Paris on a beautiful night, watching the Eiffel Tower twinkle, was a bit of a dream come true.

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I know, corny. But awesome at the same time.

{cue the Disney song “When You Wish Upon A Star”… and you may also roll your eyes at this particular point in the blog post icon wink To Paris! Night One! }

Anyways, tomorrow I’ll share some more of our crazy adventures throughout the city! There are just so many fun pictures to share! Thanks for reading! icon smile To Paris! Night One!

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A Parisian Less-Than-Graceful Monday!

096 1024x682 A Parisian Less Than Graceful Monday!

Happy Monday from me to you! Did you have a marvelous Easter? Eat a whole row of Peeps and a few chocolate bunnies? There’s nothing like celebrating the Resurrection than with a few large bags of Jelly Beans and Reese’s Peanut Buttercup Eggs. icon wink A Parisian Less Than Graceful Monday!

But in all seriousness, I do love Easter and the hope that it brings. We had such a fun holiday, and I hope your Sunday was warm and bright and hopeful as well. icon smile A Parisian Less Than Graceful Monday!

Darebear and I are back from our adventure to Paris, so I thought I’d share a few “less-than-graceful” stories that occurred across the Atlantic! You’d think that my trip to Paris would have enhanced or encouraged a more socially acceptable and/or “elegant” individual, right? Right! Right….

  1. That chocolate éclair that I’m cramming into my mouth in the picture above {It was so good, you guys. Definitely a “cram-it-into-your-mouth-and-don’t-look-back” kind of dessert} was purchased by me speaking only in French! I was so darn excited about my first, “legit” {whatever that means in this context…} French conversation and pastry purchase that I dropped every piece of change I had in my wallet {both European and American} all over the floor. I let out a Charlie Brown “Ugh!” {which doesn’t translate very well into French} and proceeded to crouch around the bakery, picking up my dimes and euros…….however, I did leave with a chocolate éclair. And that’s all that matters.
  2. Speaking of French pastries, I may or may not have eaten 7 different French pastries in one sitting. This American girl is all about her “portion sizes”…
  3. If sweating, panting, and leg rubbing is “cool” these days, then I looked “real cool” climbing the incredibly steep and lengthy steps up to the Basilica of the Sacré-Cœur. Boy do I need to start running hills or something…or maybe just start running in general…
  4. Because I’m apparently incapable of correctly holding onto a metal bar or railing, I almost fell over at least twice whenever the Paris metro train jerked into motion. But I almost took down the person standing next to me only once, so that’s gotta be a silver lining.
  5. That awkward moment when you exit a fancy restaurant bathroom in Paris and a nearby French waiter  stops you, asks you if you washed your hands, and then proceeds to put your wet hands on his face….sure, we both had a good, awkward laugh afterwards, but now I’m questioning what kind of “vibe” I give off…insert squiggley mouthed smiley face.

I can’t wait to share more pictures from our trip with you this week! The weather was beautiful, the company was marvelous, and the city was so fun to explore! Hope you have wonderful Monday! Thanks for stopping by! icon smile A Parisian Less Than Graceful Monday!

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We’re Back!

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Happy Friday! It’s Friday, right? All of my days are so mixed up! After 5 days of traveling, six flights (including 2 nine hour plane rides), and a whole lot of time zone changes, Darrin and I are back home in good ol’ Minneapolis. We’re a bit jet-lagged, but I’m so thankful for the short time we had together in Paris and the exciting work we did with Rosetta Stone! We met the beautiful Delaine (who is doing some amazing things in the slums of India), learned some Swedish from the camera men, and saw so many beautiful landmarks!  Next week, I’ll share our entire slew of photos and a few funny stories and memories! But for now, here are some shots from my phone and Instagram! Paris is such a beautiful place!

I hope your week have been going well! I have to admit that I’ve missed visiting this little blog of mine. Wifi was so difficult to find throughout the city, and Darrin and I do not have the budget for extra data roaming charges! So I’m sorry for the brief hiatus! Happy to be back! icon smile Were Back!

Hope you have a great rest of your day!

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