Woot woot for Winter Solstice!
Hello again everyone and Happy Winter Solstice!
Winter, in the animal kingdom, marks a time of hibernation and me, attempting to be in tune with Mother Nature, has decided that I shall too! Afterall, if it's good enough for the bears, hey, it is good enough for me too!
During this time, I will practice self-love! What I simply mean is that I will continue to take really good care of myself!
I am (you are too!) a creation of the Gods, the universe, the infinite and I feel it would be disrespectful to the higher powers if I didn't take the time to do the difficult, time-consuming and tasking work it takes to become the best me, both mentally and physically. That is my goal for the future, however I cannot help but to think of my past. Especially during this time of year.
As I grow older (and hopefully wiser) I notice my wants and needs are completely different from the American-me and now, French-me. But, I do have to admit, I miss the over the top, grandiose Texas-style Christmas. Everything is bigger in Texas, well, because, YEEEHAWW! I feel growing up in Texas was a grace from the Gods...the food, the scenery, the warmness of her people, the weather, simply put... it was Christmas bliss!
Even though I may not many of these things at my disposal, I do have an active imagination, so returning to a certain place and time is as easy as diving into an warm ocean.
That said, I wanted to share with you a small list of some of the sights, sounds, and smells of growing up Texan.
These are a few things I remember fondly and I hope my nostalgia allows you to reminisce too!!
1. Barbra Streisand Christmas album -- this was a staple during the holidays and I'm pleased the say, the tradition continues! My Mom would be proud! I love Babs, her vocal chords are dipped in gold, she has the power to move me to tears!
Happy Holidays ya'll -- vous tous! May you have many excellent experiences that will make for excellent memories!
Until next time -- Jenny! xoxxox
Dionysus would be proud!
Bonjour vous tous!
I hope you are well and happy!! If you are feeling a bit stressed, fear not, I have something special for YOU!
Before we get started, I want you to know a solid truth about me: I believe there is no problem that tacos and wine cannot fix. So, with that in mind, here is a little stress reliever to keep you going throughout the winter season.
It's called vin chaud, (pronounced: vahn shoooo) otherwise known as HOT WINE! Are you familiar with it?
Well, you are now and what's more, I am going to give you the recipe to make it!
Every country has their own hot wine recipe, however since this is a FRENCH blog, I will share with you the recipe from my adopted country. Vin chaud is a staple at local Christmas markets -- and for a little dixie cup of this warm deliciousness, expect to shell out 2-3 euros. Which is a little expensive, considering you can make a big ole pot of it for about 6-8€. Thing is, vin chaud typically consists of a cheap red wine mixed with sugar, cinnamon, and lemon. It must not be too sweet and it should have a nice balance, that means you will have to do several taste tests! Have fun with that -- and be sure to send me the photos, please!
Without further ado, the directions and the recipe!
1.5 - 2 bottles of red wine -- any type is fine. In France, they use a less expensive bottle, maybe a $4-7 bottle
1 orange -- cut in round slices
half a lemon -- cut in rounds
freshly grated nutmeg or 3-6 dashes of the powdered stuff
1 cinnamon stick
3-6 dashes of powdered cinnamon
2-3 star anise (optional)
5-6 soup spoons of sugar, plus one extra for your homies! ha!
3/4 of a cup of water or half a NORMAL coffee mug of water
Next: Place the water, fruit, spices and sugar on the stove (obviously) medium heat and bring to a near boil, to melt the sugar.
Above photos: (L) "Squeeeeeeeeee! I love wine! (R) Focus Jenny!! Don't SPILL the wine, it offends the Gods!
THEN: When it starts to smell like heaven, lower the heat (low) and pour in the wine and stir.
Do not allow the wine to boil.
When it begins to bubble, turn off the heat and let it absorb the spices for about 15 minutes. Taste. Does it need anything?
If so, add it and cover! Let it meld for another 5, then taste again.
And repeat until it is to your liking!
Next: Pour into your favorite mug and toast to Dionysus! ENJOY!
Again, there is no problem wine or tacos cannot fix! Trust me!
Be a Seizer!
Veni Vidi Vici -- baby!
Read Time: 6 minutes
Bonjour vous tous -- Hey ya'll!
I hope you are finding yourself well, in good spirits and that you are keeping warm as the temps outside take a dip.
It has been chilly and grey these past few days, however it is as expected. Winter will be upon us soon, yes, but that also means that our days will start getting longer. Yay for Winter Solstice!
Time passes quickly, it seems like only yesterday that my sweet husband and I were basking in the summer sun and hiking in the Pyrénées. Alas, December is here, Christmas is right around the corner and BAM -- 2015! Ohhh la la!!
But again, this is no surprise. What is surprising is the craziness of it all! Everyone is on the same schedule, meaning everyone knows the holidays are here, yet why all the anxiety, stress, thoughtlessness and recklessness?
I thought or was made to believe that the holidays are a joyous and celebratory time of year, mixed with good food, champagne and laughter. But it seems (in some cases, not all) the opposite is true. I have heard too many stories recently of my close friends and aquaintances having experienced a loss of a loved one or a serious accident, due to, well, anxiety and recklessness. So, I ask -- Holiday Heaven or Hell?
The new year is upon us and many people are going to make new year's resolutions and mazel tov, but seriously, how cliché! I say that with love, ok tough love, because I am thinking about how packed my gym will be in January.
Note to self: go to the gym at 6am.
Everyday is an opportunity to make a resolution. Why wait? Be a Seizer! Seize each day with wonder, be inquisitive, be kind, just be the best you. Seriously, life is good!!! Just look at how spoiled we are -- everything is freaking awesome!
Be happy because you are loved, be happy with what you have, be happy just because!
Sure, you may turn some people off and yes, sometimes life will suck, but one cannot live a full and happy life according to your (high) and other people's expectations. Pffft, n'importe quoi! Soooooo, don't have expectations, France taught me that!!
As the famous American expression states: "Haters gonna Hate!" So you might as well be fabulous!!!
Happy Winter Solstice! Happy Christmas! Happy Hanukkah! Happy Holidays! Just be Happy! Olé!
Until next time... take care of yourselves and remember: Life is too short to eat bad food!
From my sweet little family to yours -- Much love and respect. -- Jenny
Bonjour et Bienvenue!
Thank you for stopping by for a spell!
I am a 40-something year old American woman. Born in Texas, raised in Las Vegas!
Frenchified for Life
is a fabulous little lifestyle blog about truly embracing French life!
My intent is to simply inspire you to create something unique and beautiful in your everyday life. The French have this wonderful and annoying habit of seeing the world through rose colored glasses, might as well learn something from them!
That said, I lift my glass to you!
By the way, I mention the name Cachou (or The Cash) a lot, I'm referring to her...