just another American bumbling around Paris.

joyeux noël

another Christmas.

we’ve had this little angel since I can remember.  when I was little I would constantly take her off the tree and fly her around the house.  we have two other angel ornaments that were her friends, and I would make the three of them play all the time.  I thought they were so beautiful.  I still think so, actually.


I lost the best cat in the world in July 2010.  we have several ornaments dedicated to members of our family who have passed; this black, green-eyed kitty is in honor of my Gypsy.


Christmas eve Scrabble with two professors.  I placed 2nd!


got a beautiful new charm for my bracelet, this one for Switzerland.


and finally, one Christmas decoration from last year that I am missing dearly this year.

c IMG_1082

joyeux noël tout le monde.  merry christmas, wesolych swiat (thanks mom). ♥

Happy Thanksgiving (late)

The whole internet goes into the hypocrisy of Thanksgiving, so I’ll spare that bit and just say it was nice to be home since I was not for the last two Thanksgivings.  Not all of my family could make it, but this is closer than I came in 2010 and 11.

this recipe card is older than I am.



grâce à Matador Network

Matador Network shared this photo on Facebook today (photographer unknown).

This is in Rothenburg, and my step-grandmother’s family lived in that center house a couple of generations ago.  I have visited Rothenburg with my grandpa and was really excited to see the photo!

Simply beautiful.  I went in the month of May, and it was lovely, but I’m pretty sure this town was made for Christmastime.

“I can see your double O and your 7.”

Graham Norton stated on his show that the formula to determine your Bond Girl name is your childhood nickname for your private parts + your grandmother’s maiden name.

Therefore, my Bond Girl name could be:  Weewee McCoy, or Weewee Kuczynska.  I don’t know which I like more.

le pull est fini juste à temps pour l’automne

Knitting weather is just about here, and the drought finally ended a few weeks ago.

I finished the sweater I started in the spring.  I had my mom haul all my yarn back to the US for me since my luggage was already stuffed, and I finally dug it out a few weeks ago and finished it up.  Made of 80% wool yarn from Phildar, the only place I know of to buy yarn in Paris.  Somewhat limited selection of heavier yarns, but I liked this yarn a lot.



The pattern for this Lattice Sweater was taken from Interweave, one of my favorite knitting sites!


According to the news, this is the worst American drought since 1956. Apparently my region would need 6 inches of rainfall to get the soil back to normal. We experience a couple minutes of light sprinkling every couple of weeks, but not much…

pelouse seche

My yard, 18 juillet 2012.

au revoir à la meilleure année

Goodbye to the past year.  Tomorrow I embark on a new one…

I’ll miss being 24.

Rush, 20 décembre 2011.

Friday the 13th

So a bit of creepiness.


Kilmainham Gaol, Dublin, 16 mai 2012

polski alfabet.

0:27-0:48.  This is IMPOSSIBLE.

pause glace.

This is not a good day.

So we’ve decided it’s time to repaint the inside of most of the house, but when we were picking out paint colors at the shop, the man said:  “are you doing the ceiling, too?”  My mom and I looked at each other.

I got all enthusiastic.  “Yeah!!!  I mean, WHY NOT?!  Who knows the last time it was painted?!  While we’re painting, might as well do the ceiling!”

I am so. STUPID.

I spent the morning putting the protective tape on trim and wallpaper edges and felt all accomplished.  I was in my Professional Amateur painting outfit:  rolled cutoffs and a tank top that I (very badly) tie-dyed when I was 12.  My little sister came home and said, “well look at you,” as I stood teetering on the chair with my tape, bottom sticking out in all its glory.

She then retreated to her room.  Hm, okay.  No help.  I didn’t really expect it anyway.

I finish taping and vacuum the ceiling.  I go over it again with a Swiffer rag rubber banded onto my wheely paint roller.  I put the plastic tarp over everything in the room and cover remaining edges like mantel, etc. with big rag towels.  I am ready to go.

So I go to my designated paint-pouring area (laundry room) to pour paint into the paint tray thingie.  SLOSH.  Spill some on rag towel.  “Oh well, that’s what it’s for!”  Grab more rags.

Emerge from laundry room to room I am painting.  Thanks to my research (entered “paint bumpy ceiling” into Google), I know that when painting a popcorn ceiling, you roll one way, not back and forth.  Cool.  I do my first roll past.  Oooh, nice.  Nice and white and clean.  Not so different from the old paint, but I exaggerate the difference for myself.  “This was totally worth it!”

I do the next one.  Hm.  Why is there a line there?  Try to go over it.  Tell myself it’s better.  Is it?  I still don’t know.

My arms are already tired.

I continue.

As I go about my business, I realize that Google’s advice telling me to wear goggles was actually pretty sound.  I know from the last time I chopped really strong onions that my science-y older sister’s goggles no longer occupy their old spot in our art supplies cupboard.  She told me she thought Little Sister took them.

Little Sister has woken up from the nap she was taking and I find her brushing her teeth.  “A, do you have J’s goggles?”  “No.”  “Oh,” I say, rinsing paint spatters out of my eyes and off my face.  “Because she said she thought maybe you took them for a chemistry class or something.”  “Yeah.  But I dunno where they are.”  “Oh.  Well do you have any swimming goggles or anything?” I ask, since she was Most Valuable Swimmer on her swim team like every single year as a kid.  She goes to rummage about in her room and comes back empty-handed.  She then disappears into garage telling me she’ll “have to look through all [her] school stuff to find the other goggles,” and comes back 3 seconds later with the goggles.


I put goggles on.  I start painting.  ‘Well this is better!’ I think.  Wait. No.

Why can’t I see??

They are steaming up because it’s hot as hell in the room.  I am very very hot all of a sudden.  I hadn’t even noticed my face was on fire.  My stupid face is perspiring like there’s no tomorrow.  Wtf.

Then things really pick up when our really floofy cat walks by with his floofy fur flying out all over, threatening to stick to my wheely brush thing.  “GO AWAY!!!”  I scare him behind the couch and notice that the edge of the plastic tarp covering the couch has made its way over the air conditioning vent and is ballooning up above it, selfishly trapping all the cold air.  Great.  Also, the ballooning has lifted the cover, uncovering part of the suede couch so it’s exposed to my paint splatters.  Fabulous.

So I’m done with the first room now.  I had a spoonful of Breyer’s Mint Chip and I’m sitting her listening to Lily Allen crankily.

I hate painting.