Saturday, April 24, 2010

Picnic in the tuileries

Yesterday was so lovely out and by some stroke of luck, I had a playgroup picnic to go to- it seems like Murphy's Law that if there is a gorgeous day, we end up scrambling around for something fun to do but pick any miserable cold day, and I am bound to have scheduled an afternoon of freezing my ass off on a park bench. Even more lucky, B had the day off so I kept Ella home from Centre de Loisirs and we all went to the Tuileries for lunch.

Its definitely still springtime- we originally put our blanket under the shade of a tree to keep the babies out of the sun. But it was icy in the shade! I was practically shivering before I had the sense to move the blanket over a few feet into the sun and there we stayed, for four hours. That morning, I started getting another one of these weird ocular migraines- I'm going to have to see the doctor about it soon, its so annoying- and so I couldn't run around to the shops to pick up some lunch like I had planned. I scrounged around in the fridge and finally ended up with a pretty decent lunch. I made David Lebovitz's Roast Chicken , a carrot salade with lemon and tahini sauce (which Ella, Georgia and B refused to touch...), a couscous salade, and cut up some vegetables. When we got there, the Paul stand was just nearby, so we even managed to have coffee and dessert. A perfect picnic lunch!

I had the girls dressed up so that I could take some nice photos, you can see how well that worked out. Georgia is such a grouch, it is unbelievable. Finally, I asked B if he wanted to take her for a walk in the stroller and since he had some errands to do in the neighborhood, he took her for about an hour and the rest of us could enjoy a bit of peace. Ella eventually grabbed the camera and snapped a bunch of shots. I left out all the close-ups of her eye; her shoes; several shots of a dog's behind; and the dirt. On the otherhand, I think she takes great portraits but she seems far more fascinated by these weird close-up shots of things like tree bark. Very arty. I guess that must be her French side.

When we got home, the babysitter was already at the house so we just dumped our dirty, tired children and headed straight out of the house for the evening. So nice. Being alone without the kids during the day always feels very decadent, especially when we don't have anything planned. We sat on a terrasse and had a drink; we window-shopped; I finally managed to convince B to fill up the car with useless junk from our cave and drop it off at the Emmaus in Charenton. That place is so weird- its squeezed in between brand-new buildings, Credit Foncier offices are across the street and Natexis offices are kitty-corner and the Emmaus building is this sketchy dump, behind rusted iron gates. Its so out of place and kind of scary. We got of the car and B said, 'Very smart, Nicole, carrying your Chanel bag.' as if he thought I would get mugged on the 5 meters between the car and the drop off gate. I don't think its as bad as that, but it does look bad compared to the neighbors. Still, we'll be back. I saw that they take baby stuff and books and it looks like any weird shit you feel like giving them. I am on a mission to get my cupboards cleared out.

We could have just gone straight out to drinks and dinner but it was just SO nice yesterday evening, that I decided that I wanted to change into a dress and heels. All winter, I end up going out in the same uniform of head-to-toe black, and it hardly seems worth the bother of dressing up when it is all covered with long coats and scarves. Last night, I didn't even need a jacket! I loved it. I could get used to this. Of course, as I dressed last night, I realized that my wardrobe is in dire need of an intervention. I have about 1 outfit that is suitable for polite company, the rest is only good for wrangling babies in the park. I swore that until I was absolutely 100% back to my pre-pregnancy size, I wouldn't do any shopping and I am hovering on the edges, but am not quite there. I really thought that the ten days of no wine (due to antibiotics) would push me over the edge. Up until now, I've resisted giving up my nightly glass of wine, but this forced me to do it. You know what? Nothing. I don't loose an 1 inch or an ounce. On the otherhand, hurrah. Who wants to give up wine? So, I have to find another way to get there.

Damn you, Muffin Top, and your tenacious grip on my ass.


Ksam said...

That's so random, I was just trying to figure out how to get to that Emmaus the other day. I looked it up on Google Maps street view and couldn't see it anywhere (not to mention that it seemed to be a really weird neighborhood for it to be in)!

Nicole said...

That particular Emmaus is called the 'Bric-a-Brac', and it takes furniture as well as all other sorts of household things. Its actually fairly easy to get to because you just go a bit past the Centre Commerciale de Bercy, so just off the peripherique. There is another one on blvd Beaumarchais that takes clothing but I think that they must take other small household stuff, as I've seen curtains there as well.