Business Cards

While I was doing those flyers I decided to redesign my business card. SO in the spirit of Keeping calm… This is my new business card! What do you all think?

HerminePhotoBusiness Card Layer copy

 

 

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Spring Flowers

I decided to just put some pictures of flowers, I LOVE spring and I thought I will share with you some of the pictures that I took not so long ago.

You can check more online by following the link below. Hope you enjoy them.

Citadel of Bitche, France

At the beginning of the month we went with our friend Larry and his new neighbor Charmaine (very cool chicka) to Bitche. I admit it that I always wanted to live there when we use to be in France (moselle) because of the name. Can you imagine having an address with the city of Bitche?? LOL!!Anyway, I found a website with tones of cool information about Bitche and you can go here to read more: Bitche: French citadel offers visitors unique look at dramatic siege in European history
“On a hill in the middle of the French town of Bitche, a massive, gray fortification looms over the surrounding homes, shops and restaurants. And yet, that very same citadel earned a place in the hearts of French citizens and French history by withstanding assault after assault by Bavarian forces for some 230 days following the collapse of the French army in the war of 1870. …/..

When the French military forces collapsed against the superior might of the Germans in the War of 1870, fleeing Soldiers and citizens sought refuge in the fortress as a last resort, never envisioning that they would remain within the citadel walls for the large part of a year.

Despite smallpox, hunger and other monumental challenges, the vastly outnumbered French soldiers managed to hold off the Bavarian forces, even managing to mount a counterattack during the siege. But in the end France capitulated, and those who had held the citadel for so long were finally permitted to evacuate the fortress without recourse from the victors. “

The Commandant Teyssier (Major) held the citadelle from July 1870 to March 1871 and when he gave the key to the German he left the citadelle (or so they say) with the German soldiers at attention to show their respect.
During the visit of the citadelle, you can view a movie about the battle and I found that kind of funny (not funny ah ah, but you know what I mean) that Teyssier didn’t want to leave the citadelle when the war treaty was signed, he actually left with the express order of the French Government or Paris, and at the end of the movie when he gave the key to the German, he said something like: “Paris fell but Bitche didn’t, so France is still Standing!” AH!! Proud frog that he was! 😉

Of course I couldn’t resist to get my pictures taken under the “Town Sign” So here, now everybody know that I am one of those! LOL!

Keukenhof, Netherland USO Trip

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At the end of the month of April, I was asked to escort a USO trip to the Keukenhof garden and Tulip Parade. When I went to pick up my package, my boss even told me that I could bring a friend!! OH BOY!! Whoohoo!! So I asked my new BFF C. to come along with me. And off we went.
It was (I will tell you the truth) a LONG trip. About 7 hours + bus ride. Welkom Keukenhof is located near the North Sea on the North Western part of the Netherlands.
Keukenhof mean “Kitchen Herb”, in the 15th Century it was part of the Hunting Park of the castle of Jacoba Van Beieren. Then after her death it was acquired by a Baron who hired an Architect to design a huge “English landscape Garden”, it is still the same now. However it was also use for the longest time to show off the bulbs of the Dutch Market and became popular because of that.

Click to play this Smilebox slideshow: Keukenhof 2010
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It is now a beautiful garden that opens only for the “bulb/tulip” season and every year the landscape architect design over 100 new designs to plant. The gardeners of the estates will take out all the bulbs that are planted out, and will replant them following the new design. So no matter if you went last year, it will be a new garden next year and the year after.
During the morning we drove to Noordwijk for the “Bloemencorso Bollenstreek” it started in this little town Noordwijk, Netherlands – Google Maps next to the north sea, it was packed. Buses parked everywhere. Just amazing!! Something that we laughed about was the fact that they had lots of people on bicycle, and that you betta watch out, cause they will ring their little bell and ride on you if you are not quick enough to get out of the way. I just love the Dutch language, it is what I will call a mixture of German, English and Flemish (Which I am not sure what mix of language Flemish is) so it is very hard to understand if you never studied it. I mean, I am French and I can understand a few words of Italian or Spanish, but send me to Germany or Netherlands, and I am just LOST! LOL!

Click to play this Smilebox slideshow: Keukenhof Parade 2010
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OK back to the topic. If you have the chance to be in Amsterdam during the month of April… Go visit Keukenhof, it was just amazing. I was disappointed of only ONE thing. The fact that my camera couldn’t catch the smell of all those flowers in that garden. just unbelievable.
Here as always, pictures that I took. Hope you enjoy them.

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Bella Italia Sto Arrivando

43d12-img_9267For those of you who KNOW me! You understand that I have some kind of connection with the Italian culture. I just LOVE Italy, LOVE the culture, the history, the landscape, the food, the weather, the language, the cars and of course going there and being called “Bella” is a Huge bonus! LOL
So when my friend Charmie told me that she was going TDY for 4 days around my Birthday, I jump on the possibility and said: “Can I come with you?”
She said: “OMG!! Sure!! Are you sure??” OF course I am SURE! Are you kidding me?? I am sure about nothing BUT the fact that I can go in Italy and enjoy everything that I can about Italy!! 😉
I am so excited, so we are leaving tomorrow morning… WHOHOO!! And coming back on Thursday (sometime in the afternoon) but there is always the possibility that we will get lost and will HAVE to stay there of course, we will (Obviously) try our best to find our way back, but you know all the road lead to Rome. So I might be able to send a postcard from there too! LOL!

Can you see on the map, Venice, Vincenza, Padova, Rovigo, and Verona. Of course we will be going around Verona, so all those big cities might only be a dream to visit one day. But I sure am going to try to get around as much as I can! I will keep you posted on what, where, how and you know me, my HTF (Happy Trigger Finger) is delighted.

Ciao

Second Celebration of my 20th birthday!

On May 17th 2010, I was celebrating my 20th Birthday for the second time. 😉

I like BIG number. With it comes: “Experience, Wisdom, Intelligence, Maturity, Responsibility….” Bla bla bla

So now that I am 40 years young. (The new 30 right?) I can think of what that came with it.

Experience: Yes, definitely. I do believe I got that checked out of my bucket list.

Wisdom: Not so much… Or at least I don’t think so! So… Still working on that one!

Intelligence: well, let see, sometime I do believe I got some, and sometime I am definitely not as smarter as a 5th grader. LOL But, I do consider myself “stress sassy” so…. I guess in my own way, I am smart! LOL

Maturity: hmmmmm!!!!! Well obviously with the age comes maturity after all the definition is: mature state: the condition of being ripe, fully aged, or fully grown, especially mentally or emotionally BUT, I will have to say that I still have to checkmark the mentally and emotionally. Oh wait! Maybe not since 40 is the new 30! LOL!

Responsibility: well I think I am pretty responsible. I have 3 kids and cats to take care of, I don’t think they are considered maltreated. So… in that case I am responsible. However, I know that I need to work on that. So still uncheck!

So looking back, out of 5, I only have 1 fully checked one! That is BAD, don’t you think??

Anyhow. Now that I made a fool out of myself and showed the world that I am just a weird silly irresponsible young adult at heart. Let me tell you about my birthday day.

I was in Italy as you could have guess from the previous post, and my friend Miss Charm went to her conference leaving me on my own for the day. You can see what my day was on my previous post: Hills are alive
So on the late afternoon after the conference,
Miss Charm and I went to the little town that I drove through during the day called: Desenzano del Garda. Very cute little Italian town next to the lake. Gorgeous view of the Alps Mountain and the water. Old villas and typical fountains and gelato! Did I mention I LOVE Italy? 😉 So we park the car and walked around.

Took tones of pictures (you know my HTF right) and had a very nice meal looking at the sunset over the lake over the mountains. MAGNIFICO!

The only downside of the day was that I wasn’t with my family. I would have loved to have them with me, but the I thought that once in a while I could go and enjoy one Birthday without them, and since it was in Italy, how could I NOT go?

OH, and I found the PERFECT Villa for retirement! LOVE IT!!!

Schwetzingen Blossom

The cherry trees are in bloom. It is as usual beautiful. We went several time, had too, it is just so pretty…So here are a few pictures of those times. You can see that the flowers give joy to the people who are admiring! It is so cool!! We came upon a group of girls that were dress up in “Manga” characters and that were taking pictures of themselves! Morgane was so excited!! She loves Manga and that was like heaven for her!!
Love is in the air you can see lover’s enjoying the beauty of spring. On our way out we cruised in Schwetzingen and everyone were enjoying the nice weather. Eating out is starting and it is so neat!!

Czech Republic

In June my mother and father in law rented a house in the Czech Republic. We drove their and meet them at the house. It was great to see them again, and the house was outside of the Prague center but not so far that you couldn’t enjoy it. So we settle in the first day and went on our discovery of Prague. From Up hill next to the castle, to down hill next to the river, Prague is just a beautiful city to visit. This is kind of interesting. This giant Metronome was erected in 1991 on a place that use to have a huge monument of Joseph Stalin (who was destroyed in 1962). If you go all the way to the Metronome, there is a Skateboard meeting place, and lots of young people meet there. Old Town square is a must when you go to Prague. Well it is next to the Astronomical Clock, there is also Tyn Cathedral and St Nicholas Church. This memorial is the statue of Religious reformer Jan hus who was burned at the stake for his belief. (nice he?)

Part of the Charles bridge, this summer wasn’t too great because of the fact that they were repaving the bridge, so it was always busy between construction and tourist. but it is one of the most beautiful bridge that I have ever seen. So many beautiful statues and views from the river.

 One of the Smallest street in Europe (I think), I mean come on , there is even a light to make sure you can pass, because 2 peoples can’t stand next to each other!! How cool is that?

Art made out of metal keys!!

Prague is also knowned for ball the beer that you can enjoy in their different Beer Garden/Restaurant and Cafe. For more information on the beer in the Czech Republic, check here http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Beer_in_Czech_Republic

Inside of the Train Station in Prague

Old Jewish Cemetary. This community weren’t allowed to buried their love one outside of the Jewish Ghetto. So they had to burried them on top of each other. It isn’t used anymore, but you can see that the tombstone are so close to each other. It is an amazing place to go visit even though it is kind of sad that Jewish had to suffer in that kind of way!

Kutna Hora Czech Republic

While in the Czech Republic in June, we went to Kutna Hora. We stopped at the Cathedral of our Lady to try to find more information about the town, or at least a plan of the town. So we went toward the cathedral and I guess I was kinda of lucky and passed under the radar of the “entrance lady” so I didn’t have to pay my entrance.

I was very surprise in Prague about the fact that most of the church/Cathedral and Chapel have entry fees. I mean I understand if you are a huge known church like the Vatican or like that. but even Notre Dame doesn’t have a entry fee. WTH?

Well anyway. I thought this church no matter the fact of entry fee, was beautiful. So much light, huge beautiful space and the colors where beautiful! St. Felix Remains. The Sedlec Ossuary: It is believe to contain the skeletons of 40000 to 70000 people.

Because of the Black Death in the mid 14th century and the Hessian Wars in the early 15th Century the local cemeteray had to be enlarged to make room for the newly deceased. A church was build on the cemetary ground and on the lower level of it, the ossuary was build and the task of exhuming and stacking the bones started.
In 1870 a woodcarver was employed byt the Schwarzenberg family to put the bones in somekind of order. An incredible and macabre artform is the result.
And then there is Saint Barbara Church, one of the most famous Gothic churches in Central Europe and is part of the UNESCO world heritage site.
Again a beautiful sight. Just gorgeous ceiling.

Beautiful Prague Czech Republic

OH, How I love Prague. For those of you who haven’t had the chance to go… GO. Do you planning and GO!!

You won’t be sorry you did.One day I told one of my friend who was not sure where to go between Paris and Prague with a visiting friend, that she should go to Prague.

Reasons were: It is smaller, there is less cars, less expensif, and the architecture is beautiful. Every corner you turn there come another gorgeous building or scenery. Just amazing.

I mean, I am French so maybe the fact that it was only my second time in Prague made it so special, but… I doubt it. In order Prague is before Paris in my viewpoint but… Venice is before Prague!One of the things that I mention earlier is that no matter where you are in Prague you will turn a corner and see something different. The details in the architecture is amazing. I love the colors, the different kind of building. The balcony, the windows, everything is just gorgeous.

Hardware on doors are also amazing
Another part of town that is well known and visited, is the Jewish quarter.
It has a sad history. Apparently the Jewish community were ordered in the 13th Century to leave their home and settle in one area ofd Prague. The area was the only place they were allowed to live. Even thought the area changed under a large redevelopment between 1893-1913 most significant building from previous eras were saved.

There is still 6 synagogues remaining, the town hall and the old jewish cemetary which is an amazing site on its own. The old cemetery is amazing. When you walk in it you will just wonder why it look like that. During our visit, I learned that because the Jewish Community were ordered to live in a small part of town, they didn’t have the luxury of expending their cemetery. So they used their small graveyard to the fullest. And I mean the FULLEST! The result is somehow poetic. If I may say so. A new Jewish cemetery was build later accross town, it is half empty because obviously the generation it was build for all died in Nazi concentration camp.