Monday, December 29, 2008


NOEL 2008

Our Christmas is actually on the Eve. We have always opened our gifts at midnight on xmas eve. However, before that happens, we usually prepare a buffet for the evening. Everyone munches on that and usually go back for more many times lol. Cleo and her cousin Chantal below doing just that.

NOEL 2008

Each year I make a few old tryed and true things like egg salad sandwiches and ham sandwiches..we also have lots of crisp veggies with a choice of dips, cold cut platter, coleslaw or salad etc. This year Chris wanted to add some new things so he came up with a few new hors doeuvres as did I.

To help organize our work, Chris came up with a cute system. He wrote each dish we had planned on a post-it note, and stuck them on the cubboard door. We had so many that it made it easier to see them written out for we finished one plate he would stick the corrisponding note onto another cubboard door..made it easy to keep track . Below is what that looked was a great idea lol

NOEL 2008

This is the list, some of which may not sound yummy to some(especially in english lol) but they were all devine! delicious! delectable! I assure you!

Canape au fromage bleu et noix (blue cheese & nut canape)

Canape au chevre et raisin (goat cheese & grape slice canape)

Pruneau au bacon (prune rolled with bacon)

Viande froide (cold cuts)

Croutes du crevettes et poire( Shrimp/cheese & pear cups)

Couronne de crevettes( Shrimp platter)

Legumes cru et trempette (Veggies with 3 different dips)

Morceaux de fromage et autres ( Cheese plate with pickes, olives etc)

Salade de choux (Coleslaw)

Canape au Sammon fume et creme freshe( Smoked salmon with fresh cream with chives)

Canape au foie gras (goose liver canapes)

Champinions farcie (stuffed mushrooms)

Sandwich au jambon et oeufs ( egg & ham sandwiches)

Served with a local Ice Cider we love.

We had deserts of chocolate fudge I make each year , home made cookies, and an assortment of 4 types of individual cheese cakes that were to die for..(that I didn't make myself)

NOEL 2008

NOEL 2008

This was the food portion of our program today lol. Hope you I wish we hadn't eaten it all! I am hungry again!

Friday, December 26, 2008


Now that most of my xmas cards have been recieved, I can post this years Christmas letter.

As another year flies by, I hope this letter finds you all well. We have had a few highlights this year. To start I guess it's unnecessary to mention we all survived being buried under 10 feet of snow last winter! brought back childhood memories of one year in Fernie BC when we couldn't see the house across the street because the snow banks were so high. Dad actually fell off the roof while shovelling that year but didn't suffer a scratch!

Chris was like a kid in a candy store with each snow fall..he loves our Canadian winters. Every chance he gets to call home to shock his family with the weather status is a joy for him!

In April I was able to escape the remaining 8 feet of snow, as Chris took me home to France. I can't begin to express how welcome I felt and how enchanted I was with the country of my ancestors. Ironically, although we left a harsh winter, last spring in Paris was uncharacteristically cold. So everyone enjoyed making fun of the Canadian girl who was freezing! Let's make one thing clear. I dressed for a famous spring time in Paris and I had also lost 80lbs in the last year so this chick felt like she had no plumage on a few different levels! Thankfully we had some nice weather also.

My accent was a source of much amuzement all across France. Although I am fluent my accent isn't quite quebecoise nor is it Chris had to translate a few much for me as for them!

I must say I had the best tour guide. Chris drove over 4300 klms with the rental car! We spent some days in Paris, his parents live near Versailles and his sister Frederique and husband Chef Bernard, have a restaurant in the region of Normandie. I swear I have never eaten anything so good in all my 45 years on this earth!

We also went to the Haut Pyreennes to stay with his grandmother. It is 1 hour from Spain, so we spent a day there. We also had Chris' daughter Mahault age 16 and son Thomas age 14 with us for 2 weeks. It was a great time scouting out castles to visit and sites to see together. As we travelled towards Brittany where the kids live, we stopped in the Basque Biarritz, a beach on the atlantic famous for great surfing and ofcourse topless sunbathers. I decided to refrain from exposing my ample attributes only because I didn't want to make the locals jealous or block out the sun, which ever came first...cough cough. It was hot and beautiful so the kids got their suits out to swim..and Chris and I had fun getting our feet wet on the shore.

We made our way to Brittany as the kids holiday was then go onto visit a sight to be seen in ones lifetime. Mont Saint Michel. It was jaw dropping to see something built over 1000 yrs ago. Like a fortress raised above the ocean out of nowhere like a fantasy. We spent hours exploring and had supper there. To finally drive 4 hours back to Versailles. Our travels over the weeks had us almost going in a full circle.

The last week took us to the city of Lafleche in Normandie from where my paternal family ancestor came from. In 1653 Michel Bouvier among others travelled to Montreal when it was being colonized. I had the privilage to meet the towns culteral attachee who greeted us with a warm welcome. I was also presented with a beautiful book published of the the history of that very voyage. We also recieved a book of present day Lafleche depicted with lovely photos . I was taken to the archives to actually hold the oldest book of registrar they had. Written on the second page was the baptism of our ancestor in 1633! Had he been born 1 month earlier, they would not have had that record! The gentleman then spend an hour with us walking around the town center showing us many landmarks and the church where the baptism actually took place! It was quite an experience for me.

It was truelly a trip of a lifetime. His whole family also made me feel very welcome. Imbarrasingly for Chris, I got to hear all the childhood horror stories he was a part of growing up.

Last summer, we stuck close to home. Our deck needed to be rebuilt. It had seen better days so Chris rebuilt it with Cleo's help. I had visions of them killing themselves, swinging 8 foot planks around like Laurel and Hardy..but they did a great job. Cleo has never been afraid of power tools..unlike her mom. Give me a a sewing machine and a stapler anyday but just going near *man* tools gives me the heebeejeebees. (psst Truth be told, I always figured if I learned how to operate them I would be expected to actually use them...they fall under the same catagory as lawn mowers and snow blowers...not going there!)

Cleo is very busy in college in an arts program. She is still doing her classical piano lessons and learning guitar. Needless to say, she has a full plate. Oh and her hair is blue. It actually looks great but incase you are wondering, her father was NOT a smurf.

She turned 18 this past Sept. I think that all parents cosmically age 10 years when their children become adults. Our brain clicks a cog that says..OK what now?.But wait! They are grown, our job is done. I hope my parenting has enabled them to make the right choices for their future. Then we realize, ARE YOU INSANE!? Remember how you were at 18! OMG!.Then our brain reclicks the ..OK what now?!

Well, this sums up the highlights of our year. I wish my letter contained an electrical charge to automatically wake you now as its over. We hope you all have a terrific holiday season and the new year brings you new adventures, good health and happiness.

Till next year..sincerely Monette, Chris and Cleo ...0x0x0x

Monday, December 22, 2008


I recieved one of the best gifts ever in the mail! What a total treasure box of goodies! My very good friend Cheri is a baking genius and I am one of the lucky ones who gets to taste the fruits of her labor. I was godsmacked when I recieved this large shoe box FULL to the rim with 13...YES.. 13 different kinds of cookies, squares and confections of all sorts...all individually packed in half dozen bags!

OMG! It's enough to make this fat girl tear up!

But mostly, it's such a gift of time, and loving care. How touching and valuable is that I ask? Needless to mention the fortune it cost to ship across Canada from Victoria BC .

So, thank you again Cheri my dear friend of over 25 yrs..Words are so hard to express , as my mouth is full at the moment!!!!

Special gift from Cheri

Eat your hearts out hehe....they are all MINE !!!...oh damn, I better share with my

Sunday, December 14, 2008


My caligraphy

It's that time of year again...Above is a sample of my hand done caligraphy. My most satifying moment during this time is when I have mailed out all my xmas cards and parcels. It's like a total load off lol.

I actually cut my xmas card list down this year...I only sent out compared to close to 60 last year. I guess it was time....when you send a card for years and never get one back or even get any news from some ppl, it's time to stop lol. We get in such a habit with such things..we forget to take stock.

NOt to say I only send out a card to recieve one back. I understand that some ppl just aren't into it. If I get a call to say hello, or get an email catching up with's basically about staying in contact. I realized that I had many family and so called friends, on my card list that I haven't even heard from in years...or really never made any sort of effort...I guess I just kept it up out of some sort of personal loyalty. That's done! lol...and I saved over 25$ in stamps!

Cards to me are like a gift of a pretty card and our time I have said before....The time it takes to write a quick word inside, address the envelope, we are thinking of that person. I always put a xmas letter in my cards...and I do the address on the envelope in caligraphy. It's a hobby of mine and I think it just adds a nice touch of special to each envelope.

If it's a card I give personally, I just put the name and then do gold highlights and swirlys to embellish it all, as I did in the above photo.

So there you have it....

Do you have any special personal touches you do for certain things? If so, please share.