Trusty Party of Six

Daily Adventures in Love and Life

Beaune, France

KristinaComment

If I could live anywhere in France, it would be Beaune.   

With it's sleepy little streets...

and patriotic sense of style.  

Our hotel was a welcome surprise.  

Family run, where the owner carries your luggage to and from your room and makes breakfast in the morning.  

This sleepy little town is known for three things....WINE, MARKETS & HOSPICE    

Bet that last one threw you for a loop.  

Beaune is often considered the birthplace of hospice. 

We toured the hospital (now a museum) with the help of an audio guide.

It was surprisingly ornate...

and very colorful.   

No detail overlooked, I am sure it was a sight to behold in 1443.  

Now the town of Beaune.  It was immaculate. 

From storefront windows....

To flower lined streets.  

Enjoyable cafes...

to the corner brasserie.

Everything was walkable, including the local pizza dive...

only found by criss crossing little alleys.  

Colorful facades 

and even more vibrant landscaping.  

I'm not joking folks. 

I could live in this dreamy little piece of heaven.  

Until I make the big move, the sight of a Beaune made market basket placed on my nightstand will have to take me there.  Or the scent of Nuxe oil, which I now regularly wear.  

Burgundy, France

KristinaComment

Five days into the trip, my luggage arrived!  Just in time!  We were headed to Burgundy.

A few hours from Paris, we rolled into the countryside.  

The landscape was dotted with wineries and farms.  

We ended up here for the day.  

We took a class in the history and art of wine making.  

Not being wine drinkers, there was plenty to learn.  

I loved walking around the property. 

And soaking in all of the little details....

That make Burgundy home to two of France's national treasures: Pinot Noir and Chardonnay.   

It was a working winery, so we did get to watch employees care for the grapes.

In addition to taking part in a wine tasting class.  

Wine isn't my thing, but this guy is.  So, I was totally into it .  As a bonus, he didn't even notice that I coordinated our outfits.  It drives him mad, so I think it's fabulous when I can pull it off.  

Sweet Burgundy.  

vineyards....

wineries....

Something out of a story book.  

Montmartre

KristinaComment

Montmartre.  The artist district of Paris.  

Once home to some of the greatest of all time (Van Gogh, Picasso, Matisse, Degas, etc.), it continues to be a landing zone to an eclectic crowd. 

As we meandered through the streets, we ran into a new friend!  Brian!  I know. I know.  He looks like a local.  But this is no Parisian boy.  He's from Minneapolis and one of the funniest people I've ever met in my life.  He and his wife Susan should take their show on the road!  Dennis and I are looking forward to seeing them again soon.  

After a cheese crepe, we hit the cobblestone in search of the perfect piece of art.  

I didn't find it in this shop, but loved talking with the owner.  He was knowledge and very friendly. Our buddies (Susan and Brian) found the perfect piece for their home.  It was modern and sophisticated....just like them.  

On a mission to find a piece of art...and to discover the best macaroon in the city, I did stop here.  

They had the most delicate little biscuits on the planet.   

And these chocolate balls that made my heart go pitter-patter.  

Strolling back down the hills of Montmartre, I did find the perfect piece of art.  Well, I actually found two. Both painted by a man on the street named Julious. He had worked on it most of the day and I passed him twice as added details to the canvas. He was a mess.  Hair askew, fingers covered in paint and shoes splattered from countless creations. Julious was charming, articulate and I quickly developed a sweet spot for a man old enough to be my grandfather.  Even Dennis was smitten with him, thus purchasing a second piece for his office.    

Just before hailing a cab back to the heart of the city, I stumbled upon a local jewelry store.  Two sisters hammering out silver...what's not to love.  I found a few treasures and tucked them into my bag, as our last night in Paris was coming to an end.  What great souvenirs to take back to the states.  

The Louvre & Uffizi Gallery

KristinaComment

Four days into the trip, I was still without luggage but unwavering in my enthusiasm.  We had an entire day planned of museums, galleries and monuments.

 Just a few blocks from our hotel was The Arc De Triomphe.  We walked past it a dozen times in just a few days and each glimpse produced a ridiculous "I am in Paris" grin.  

Dome Des Invalides and her magnificent golden top seemed peaceful in the early morning hours. 

It could be me, but I am pretty certain the pigeons are more chic in Paris.  This feathered friend caught my attention in the courtyard of The Palais Royal.

While I was poking around the gardens..... 

 Dennis was working on a plan for the afternoon and evening.

Such a pretty courtyard....love. 

As we left The Palais Royal for The Louvre, we passed this street performer.  What caught my attention were the wheels on the piano.  Can you imagine pulling this beast through the streets of Paris?  He deserves a tip for ingenuity and brute strength.  

Ahh....the famous pyramid of The Louvre. I had no idea that it was the actual entry. You purchase tickets inside the pyramid before hopping on an escalator into the lower levels.    

Walking the long halls, I found all sorts of magnificent things.....

Including my favorite, THE WINGED VICTORY.  

And my not-so-favorite "Mona Lisa."  Say what you want, I am not sold.  

Now Venus De Milo, she was a beaut.  

And this Sphinx...gargantuan in size. 

After a few hours at The Louvre, I was toast.  I needed food and fresh air.  So, we strolled across town for sandwiches and used our museum pass (an absolute must for Paris) to tackle Musée D'Orsay.  

Oh my.  It turned out to be my all time favorite museum on the trip.  Three cheers for Monet and Van Gough! 

After leaving Musée D'Orsay, we made our way to Paris' famous LOVE LOCK BRIDGE!  

I wanted to see it and the dozens of the sweethearts throwing their keys into The Seine. As I was shooting, my love was digging around in his bag.    

Because my guy had a lock engraved back home and traveled across the world with it in his luggage (enter lovey-dovey tears).   

Just as we kissed our key and were about to send it over the bridge, I noticed movement underneath us.  I yelled WAIT just as we were about to release the key.  Dennis froze.  It turns out there was a massive barge of dirt passing underneath us and our key almost landed smack-dab in the middle of it.  We doubled over in pure hysterics along with other patrons turning our sweet moment into an epic one.   

Street Scenes

KristinaComment

After Notre Dame we made our way to dinner.  I thought it would be fun to photograph our walk through the city and side streets.  

This shot, nothing special, makes me smile because on the weekends the flowers disappear and it used as a bird market!  You know, just in case you want to stop in for a parakeet or macaw.  

Backtracking...

We had the pleasure of crossing The Seine River again.   Isn't she a beaut? 

From there, we moved past countless little stands....

Selling books  

knick knacks 

and everyday tourist treasures.  

If you are in the market for a poster or art print....  

This is the place for you!  Just head to the banks of The Seine and you can shop until you drop looking for the perfect Eiffel Tower coffee cup! 

Back to dinner.   

We eventually made it here for supper.

And it was delicious.