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July 2011
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September 2011

August 2011

A week of Alixe.

We returned from Belle Ile and had a few days before getting back to work and Maximilien packing up to fly to visit his Grandpa to prolong our vacation and enjoy the emptiness of Paris.

My heart explodes from the cuteness

We had lazy days of late breakfast at Breakfast in America and park play that took us right into naptime. It was bliss.

Walking her puppy. How very Parisian of her.

Then is was time for us to say goodbye to Max as he took the plane by himself for the first time to fly to Lyon to be picked up by his uncle and then a short road trip to his grandfather's house in Pontarlier.

My big four year old is on his way to fly alone to see his grandfather!

Alixe and Max love each other. This is an undisputed fact. They also fight as many parents can relate to. Maximilien is patient and lets his sister play with almost all his toys but sometimes he is just plain tired of sharing which I can understand because his little sister is very demanding. When she doesn't get her way she screams. It's this stringent, high pitch sound that make your ears feel like they are bleeding. We love you, Alixe, but the screaming has got to stop! I think the screaming reached it's maximum level just before Maximilien left for grandpa's house. Julien and I were at our wits end. Then her brother left and se wasn't sure why she was screaming anymore. She screamed a lot the first day he was gone. I think it was just residual screaming she had built up and needed to let out. After 24 hours of only being with Mamma and Daddy. She started to talk! I would say that 75% of the words are Alixe speak we were just relieved the screaming had stopped.

Alili & me.  #instagram

Though, she was happy to have us all to herself, I know she missed Max especially at bedtime. She didn't like sleeping alone. We enjoyed taking Alixe out to dinner and realized one child at a restaurant is much easier than two. I give major respect to my parents who took all five of us out to dinner. That must have been crazy town. Alixe loved having all of our attention and I realize that it's very important she gets this kind of attention too.

Mama's glasses are endless fun

Being super cute! She gets to be the only child while Max is away this week.

Trying to eat her rice with chopsticks...o

We spent a quiet week at home. Going to the park everyday, twice a day. Taking naps together and Alixe discovered Sesame Street and she loves it!

Alixe, 20 months.

I can't believe she is entering her last year at the Creche. She will be 21 months old tomorrow. I amazed at how fast these 20 months have gone by. I love this age. So much discovery. I can't wait to hear the stories she will tell me.

Here's a funny bit about Alixe. She's quiet the neat freak already. Her aunts Elizabeth and Erin will be thrilled to know she has the cleaning gene. She absolutely loves to clean. Pick up her toys. Do the dishes. Vaccum and mop. The apartment was exceptionally clean last week.

I kid you not, my daughter loves to put on her apron and mop the floor after dinner.

The return of Maximilien was dramatic. Alixe was so thrilled to see her brother that it was non stop hugs and kisses all evening. Alixe and Max even slept together in the same bed and for the first time in a week she slept until almost 9am when we had to wake her so she wouldn't be late for her first day back to the creche.

He sucks his thumb. She does not. #latergram

They are such a joy! I am so lucky. #latergram

Two peas in a pod...

We've arrived...

We arrived in Quiberon early and were able to visit the beach for a quick dip of our feet into the ocean before our ferry to Belle Ile. Julien and Max were able to explore while Alixe and I stayed shaded from the sun. Alixe's skin is still fragil due to the chicken pox so we will be staying indoors for a few more days to be safe.

Plage de Quiberon

The boat ride from Quiberon to Le Palais was perfect. One of the best ones I can remember. The air was crisp but not too cold. The salt in the air refreshing. I must have been born on a boat in another life. There is nothing like being on a boat in the middle of the ocean with the sea air blowing in your face. I can't get enough of it.

On the boat to Belle Ile. I love the trip from Quiberon to Belle Ile because there is a moment when we are in between the continent and Belle Ile where you can't see land on either side. It's only for a couple minutes but it's so exhilarating the feeling of being out to sea. Nothing surrounding you but the big blue. All this coming from a Kansas girl. The ocean was hard to come by growing up.

Bye, bye Quiberon!
This is Maximilien's fourth visit to Belle Ile. I hope he will have vivid memories of our summer trips here.

On y est presque!
The view of Belle Ile as we approach the port city of Le Palais. The family house is over to the left near the tip of the island.

Belle Ile! Arriving to Le Palais is always exciting. Today we were lucky to have Julien's brother waiting for us at the port. Seeing people wave at you as the boat arrives is really fun. I enjoy spending early mornings at Le Palais having coffee and watching the boats arrive.

Arriving at Le Palais! Can you spot Ton Ton Lorin?
View of the ocean from Le Palais.
It was high tide when we arrived and the port was filled with boats. This impressed Alixe as she yelled, "bateau" at the sight of them.

We barbecued and put the kids to bed. The sounds of the sea crashing on the beach in the distance lulled them to sleep. I turned in early which is not very common for me but the pull of the ocean sounds was too strong. Now it's 3:44am and everyone is fast sleep. I am awake listening to the ocean and taking in the stars. The sky here is amazing. No city lights, no pollution and no sound but the ocean meeting the beach. I am amazed at how I have learned to tune out the city buzz after all these years living in Paris. The calm of Belle Ile reminds me of Kansas. This is probably why I love this place so much.

Keeping busy as we drive across France.

Roadtripping to the sea...#instagram #vacation #france
We're on our way to our beloved Belle Ile en Mer for a much needed break. A break from the chicken pox, the daily grind and the constant buzz of the City of Lights. Looking forward to spending lazy days on the beach, sleeping, eating crepe, barbecuing and catching up with good friends.

Crossing into La Bretagne, the air feels fresh and clean. I can't wait for that first dip in the sea!