Je Dois Admettre, Je Fais Beaucoup de Google Translate.

Photo on 26-02-14 at 14.08 #2


Il est nécessaire que je pratique le français.  Ça marché quand j’ais le temps.  Le temps à l’écriture et email.  Mais, quand je parle avec des gens, je dit le bizarre.  Je dit, ” vous coupez vos chevaux! Très mignon! ”  Je dit, ” oui, oui, des brownies noirs. ” Quand il veut des brownies aux noix.  Noir …. Noix  same sound.


Si je pratique.

Le bus.  Le bus reste là pour la prochaine journée d’école



Le pneu est sur la terre


Stop et alors où irons-nous?


Chargeurs pour les vaches.  Minotor est un bon nom pour un groupe de musique ou un personnage de jeu en ligne.



Ma soeur porte baguettes dans un panier de mamie bonne.





that is my granny cart and I love it.  google translate says, ” c’est ma grand-mère panier et je l’aime. ‘

The Hour Of The American, For Your Health Avoid Nibbling

ameri can


Every year LiDL ( say, “leedle” ) has an American promotion.  This is one of a few pages of lovely in the American Way promo mag.  Three points of fun for me are:


1) The American Brand ” MCENNEDY” … which I think was to be McKennedy or perhaps Kennedy.  Who knows, but I love it.

2) “Crisps”  I can name one American in house that knows what a crisp is.  Ask ten Americans at random what a “crisp” is and they will say “huh?” or “what, like a “chip” you mean?”

3) Pommes-Snack, my new favorite bandname ( after Hidden Testicle, that is ).


Though, the people of McEnnedy American Way did offer “Super Size.”  Nice touch.

Also note, at the bottom of the giant ad for snacks is this public service announcement:

Pour votre sante, évitez de grignote.


Translated by Lucy, ” For your health, avoid snacking .”

lidl burger


For your health, practice an activity.  LiDL health advice!  Talk about one stop shopping.


This post was in no way affiliated with McE’s American Way products.  

Sorry I’m Late. Had To Stop For A Peloton.


I’ve stopped for many things while in my car running errands.  I’ve stopped for the Fremont Bridge in Seattle.  I’ve stopped for traffic light outages.  I’ve stopped for rubber necking. I’ve stopped for a mother duck and her ducklings. And today, I spent fifteen minutes stopped waiting for a peloton.

Me in French: Who is coming? Hollande?
Grandma: Non. Les vélos!





The King of Silence, my favorite French game.  One, two, three … shut up!  The first person to speak, loses.  And the second and the rest.  Last one silenced is the winner.  Good one, France!


French lesson tomorrow.  Need to get prepared.  économie Domestique is priming me for the hour.



Charts, diagrams, lines pointing and L’humidité.  What’s not to love?  “C’est à la fois un facteur de troubles physiologiques … ”  June has been cold.  I almost cashed in on my facteur de troubles physiologiques by lighting the chauffage.  But, I resisited.  Slipped on my Costco cashmere and carried on.


and Sia clearly appreciating France with her massive hit possibly or coincidentally based on a simple kid game of France with hip child modern dancer.  Her style, vide sanitaire sous le rez-de-chaussée avec great production.  One, two, three …




Say it in French now, ” Sneekehrs.”

I’ve always thought that a Snickers bar with a multi-vitamin strap-on == a PowerBar.  Less expensive but more justification.  The Power bar – sold in gyms, health stores and outdoorsy places – allows you to pay more for the Snickers-multi-vit-strap equivalent.  PowerBar equals fit, health and strength.  Snickers version … challenged by marketing.  As sweets go, Snickers has always been okay for me.

Until Brent, for whatever reason, went and bought a 48X48g box of Snickers.  Cool! – you say.  But think of the children.  How am I to manage 48 Snicker bars ( plus one lost to delivery … thanks, Gary for saving them from the ants! ).  47 divided by 5, as I need to keep loose in my jeans, has a remainder.  This, I will defer to my family to work out.


In other news, we opened a bottle of wine!  A blast from the past.  Some Provençal Gigondas.  Those were some days.  Very nice, but I must admit, I do loves me some local gas-pump red in a box.  It’s easy listening wine.  Bottled Gigondas is an event that requires serious food.  Our serious food has been sold.  Thank you!!



and for you, some easy listening to pair with your gas-pump boxed Saint Mont and some lesser grass-fed cuts.  I feel feather-bangs coming on.


I was looking for the song – sorry “piece” – that goes like — do-do doooooooo [beat] do-do do-be dooooo … come on you know the one.  what was it?!


( Brent is forced to listen to all my youtuble.  I publicly apologize for this piece.  I can hardly stand it ( thankfully I’m sitting ) myself. )







La Fête des Mères



It is French Mothers’ Day this Sunday.  Seeing as I’m an American mother if France, we celebrate the French date. Poor kids, my birthday was but last weekend and now they have to be all nice to me again.  Ug.  How ’bout we make pancakes and call the whole thing off.




Sort of flying without instruments here … There is a whole lotta kissing that goes on here in France. And when you don’t shave, they say something like to do with ” razé. ‘ Brent is the expert at these things as he is often a bit shaven not stirred. He is shutting in the chickens with Lulu and Google translate has got nuthin’ on “stubble man greetings in France.” I sometimes can get slack on my legs, but that never comes up with French greetings. Thankfully, my French home economics book will help get the lighting just right for stubble and greetings. But what is that razé phrase thay say?

économie domestique



It is Vide Grenier season.   The weather is lovely (ish) so it’s time to clean out your attic and sell some stuff.  In Southern California, they would call this a “swap meet.”  This is where you clear out your garage and sell interesting treasures.  … or pastries … or tell people about local beef available direct.



Lucy spent the day before baking various yummies to sell.  Her star product was her American Brownies ( which will also be part of the Western Dinner for the summer ).  Though, her “jam cake” was a hot seller as well.

Other culinary yummies were La Ferme de Roussa offering amazing products and hot ducky sandwiches involving duck hearts or magret ( duck breast ).  I ate the duck breast one, amazing!



Brent wandered over after he moved the cows with the other two kiddies.  After a look around, he found a most intriguing book.  In America we would call it ” Home Economics.”  In French it is  ” économie domestique.”  And doesn’t that M.J.V.B look all cute standing next to a chart!  ( Brent will tell me off for that joke )  The chart has something to do with visibility of objects … I need to read more to understand.

The book comes with diagrams of kitchens and detailed descriptions of equipment.  Donchoo worry, I’ll need to share some other excerpts.  I’m expecting some gems as well as some useful advice.  For example, that cylinder is an alternative to a hot water tank.  It heats water quickly as it runs through.  Having installed three hot water tanks on this property, I was left with the question, ” if they didn’t have hot water tanks before we moved in, how did they heat the water?”  and further, ” Did the family who lived here before us use hot water?”



Oh and look!  Other books with girls and cloth!  and geeky girl cloth technology!



Despite the threat of rain, the vide grenier was wonderful.  Lucy sold out quickly and then went shopping.

French Lesson, A+




( Otto plays rugby for the Armagnac team. )

With all the kids off school and cows and puppy and other, I’ve been slacking on making me speak French good. Thankfully, I’m back on track. I’ve noticed that my confidence with speaking French poorly is now being compromised by my motivation with speaking French properly. I slow down more. I raise my eyebrows to see if the person I’m speaking with will acknowledge that I did it right. Sometimes I stop mid-sentence and say, “blah! Il est trop difficile à expliquer!”  And I suppose that is not right, but that is what comes out when you want to say twenty words and have six to work with.

This last lesson, I hit a giant wall. My tutor asked me a question in French for me to respond to… in French. A question about our farming techniques. In English, I have so many words with emotion and devotion to describe how we are making beef with flavor. In French, I have what feels like seven words to describe what we are doing. “The beef tastes good.” “We make beef good.” In this way, I leave my conversation in the air for artistic interpretation. It’s good to hit a low. I can only go up from here.

Another interesting French tidbit has been the French equivalent of “see ya” or “C-ya.”   A shortened version of an American phrase, “I will see you later, my dear.” I write email in French with people and groups of people. Email is nice because I can take my time and get it right. A few times I’ve seen replies to my email ending with “A+!” I of course thought this meant they understood what I said and also gave me an “A+” for getting it right! Only after a quick conversation with Brent did I realize that they were not grading my French. They were saying “à plus!” or “à plus tard!” … like see you later! Here I thought my French was improving when actually I was going to meet up with them later. A+!

Tout à Coup



(photo by K. G. )

“All of a sudden” is a great phrase to know.  This week in French, I learned some new phrases.  Phrases that people say, but they don’t teach you in French class.

“Grasse-matinée,” a fat morning was fun.  This came up because the kids are on vacation.  In England, they call it a “lay in” or “lie in”  ( I’ll let you work out the correct google terminology ).  I was trying to convey the American equivalent, but came up short.  American’s don’t lay in much.  They get up and get to work.  But I do remember, back when I was a teen, I would “sleep in” during a week of vacation.  So perhaps, that would work.

I’m very happy to report that I no longer speak in the past tense when I mean the present tense.  Also, through crazy Lego video thingies, I stumbled upon this video about learning French which I found most amusing.