The other day I saw this hand blown glass antique, at my friend's antique stand. She has a massive collection of these sorts of things at her home. She asked me if I knew what they were. I gave her my response, which was wrong, and thought to myself "Now she tells me, now, after years of being mislead."
But the minute she told me, I knew... duh, how obvious, but of course.
Do you know what it is?
The first person to tell me what it is and tells me the name of the object too, will win a antique prize.
Early nineteen century, hand blown glass object....
A second prize will be given for the most creative answer.
Good Luck and Happy Guessing.
Winners will be announced tomorrow morning.
I love riding the Ferris Wheel especially in the evening.
French Husband took the picture (above) of me running towards it... Yes I am still a child at heart. He said, "I have never been on a Ferris Wheel, have you?"
But he has been on one, I remember we rode the Ferris Wheel in Marseilles, overlooking the sea and the city, when Chelsea was a baby. Shaking my head in disbelief I responded to that man of mine, "Sometimes I wonder if you know my name!"
"Corey, I know your name."
"What is my middle name?" He looked at me with that look that says 'I am not playing your game'.
"Ferris" I offered to his silence.
The sign said:
Le Grand Roue 1900 - The Ferris Wheel 1900
50 meters high -
10,000 light bulbs or light bobs as that man of mine calls them.
36 nacelles - cars.
It takes 10 trucks to transport it.
Weighs 90 tons.
The Ferris Wheel over looked the city of Avignon. The Palais des Papes seem to bud and bloom as the Ferris Wheel took us up over the walled city. In the distance Pont d'Avignon, and the city's lights flickering. So romantic.... until that man of mine STOOD UP and rocked our Nacelle!
The ride cost five euro a piece. I wanted to keep the plastic tokens.
Years ago when I was eighteen I took my two cousins (I was their babysitter) to ride the Ferris Wheel.
The Ferris Wheel started to go around and after the second tour it sputtered, then jerked and eventually came to an abrupt halt, causing the cart to rock back and forth. As luck would have it we were stranded at the very top. Groovy. Cool. Hot Dog! I love Ferris Wheels so it should have been dreamy cozy stranded on top for nearly an hour. Except that my cousins were babies! Shara was 15 months old, and her sister Natasha was three.
Fun is not what I had.
Scared doesn't even begin to describe my feelings.
Talk about pulling tricks out of my hat, talk about singing songs constantly! Imagine trying to keep two little kids still while stranded on top of a Ferris Wheel... it is a wonder I still like the damn thing!
Photos and Text by: Corey Amaro
Along the winding way to Sacha's BMX track, which weaves through olive orchards, vineyards and goat farms, the road is narrow with spectacular views. Views that I barely notice because the twisty snake of a road is similar to Stelvio pass minus the crazy motorcyclists.
Yet the other day, let's just say the one millionth time as we climbed the mountain pass, a sparkle, a flicker of light caught my eye...
I looked back trying to detect the sparkle, "What was that?" I asked Sacha, who was listening to the Black Eyed Peas on his I-Pod. I could tell by the nod of his head that he was grooving to Boom Boom Pow which didn't seem to have the same beat as my question.
So I slammed on the brakes, nearly driving the car into the ditch.
"Mom!" shouted Sacha.
"Boom Boom Pow, do you like my swagger?" I said, though Sacha didn't catch my tease. "I saw something sparkle, that I want to investigate."
"Can't you do that on the way back, I don't want to be late." He sighed.
Obediently I drove on, he was right, on the way back I could check out that sparkle that caught my eye.
Fly catchers in olive trees. One old glass fly catcher per tree.
I wanted to be an olive tree!
I had to slap my hand's desire to pluck off those fly catchers and take them home with me!
"Diamonds!" I hollered.
"Mom really, aren't you exaggerating a bit?" replied Sacha who think I am nuts most of the time, "They're dirty!"
"Diamonds!" I shouted back listening to the Boom Boom Pow of my own heart.
Fly catchers in olive trees nearby my home.
Photos and text by: Corey Amaro
The end of the school year.
The end of an era.
Sacha graduates soon.
Fabrice, Sacha's best friend since the age of four, will go to school in Cannes.
These are the last days of childhood, or at least that is how I see it.
A big change is happening in our family.
Chelsea will study a year abroad (San Francisco, then in China). Mr. Espresso, Chelsea's boyfriend will study in London for one year.
Long distance relationships are....
Sacha will either go to school in Arles or take a gap year in Willows... he has yet to make a decision.
Their wings open, the horizon calls them, their taste-buds spark, their eyes widen...
Delicious life and the freedom to splash!
We went out to dinner the other night to celebrate Sacha's 18th birthday. While at dinner Annie's eye were sparkling as she said, "Ah youth! Look at them, young, beautiful, free.... I am happy to be here watching their future unfold before my eyes. This is the beautiful age the beginning of many firsts."
As a parent I can say what joy it is to see your children happy. What comfort it is to see them enter in healthy, caring, good relationships. It is a parent's peace of heart to see their children fall in love with someone they can trust.
Chelsea and Sacha give me peace of heart, and that it the best gift ever.
"This is the beautiful age." Annie said in regards to my children.
Though looking at her I thought, "Every age can be beautiful when we are young at heart and have something to look forward to."
But Annie would disagree with me... I can hear her say with her depth of wisdom and experience, "This is the beautiful age." And in hearing that understand completely what she means.
An open road.
A taste of firsts, like a baby's first year.
Life is beautiful: Young, old, and in between.
I hope and pray I can be as open, as young at heart, as loving and joyful as Annie is. That life will be a wonderland to live each and everyday. I pray that my children will feel that passion for life too.
The new adventure begins.
The birds are flying. The parents are looking at the nest. Annie is alive with a skip in her step, love continues to bloom and all seems good....
Happy tears with the taste of salt.
Their romance was that of a young girl's dream... love letters, candle light, tenderness and many midnight rendezvous. Swooning under the moonlight, she tied their dreams, side by side amongst the stars.
Their heads had been in the clouds, and her heart in his hand, but their feet were well planted. They knew that love had more to do with letting go, and moments like this of holding on.
...and as the moon passed around the world a thousand times, and the days came tumbling one after another, attempting to tarnish their glow. That was when she took his hand and lead him under the midnight sky. She put his hand next to her breast, untied the ribbons from the stars, believing that they would become roots.
Photo: Vintage love charm glowing under a rhinestone star.
Photos and text by Corey Amaro:
A yellow wall is the background for a planter of hens and chickens.
The summer nights are full of light. Eight in the evening, the shutters are shut, and the flowers reach out for the last golden light.
Royal blue awning with the name of one of my favorite restaurants.
A small balcony over looking the port.
The sky was blue, the sea was blue, the laundry on the line was blue....
Classic dark green shutters and a touch of pink.
Outdoor cafe. Simple put.
One blue wash cloth pinned with a yellow kiss.
Menu twenty four euro.
A side street in Cassis.
Two of the blond brocanteurs,
Enjoying the evening with Kir Royal.
Have you ever been to Nice? Have you ever been tempted to take off your clothes and dive into the sea? If you have ever been along the Promenade d'Anglais in Nice, then certainly you have felt the temptation of the Cote d'Azur (the French Riviera). The intense color of the sea has a way of wrapping itself around you, seducing you to come closer. It is nearly impossible to resist unless you have another love pulling at your coat sleeve.
As for me.... though the sparkling blue sea was tempting, I would rather strip for a brocante than bare it all to a bunch of seashells.
"Such a foolish girl," French Husband sighs, "Don't you want to swim in the sea?"
I looked at him as if he was trying to cement my feet, or worse feed me anchovies! I sneered, "No."
Under colorful striped canopies the brocante market in Nice, happens every Monday until five in the evening. The brocante market has about 200 dealers. It is a beautiful market nestled in the old town center, surrounded by restaurants, cafes, and shops. If you peek through the arches you can hear the siren calling, "Come swim...."
But if you are as addicted as I am, the brocante has the upper hand and holds you tight.
Give me old things and I will give up everything, blue sea included.
The old painted facades surround the brocante: pastel splendor, sunshine yellow, melon, with pistachio shutters and on the other side hints of lavender, soft blue with touches of cotton candy pink.
Multi colored tiled roofs sprinkled on an ice cream cone.
"How much for the city?" I teasingly asked. Then continued by pointing, "I'll take those facade, that iron lantern, a pair of those glazed pottery urns, and a cherub or two."
The dealer looked at me, looked around his stand of mostly books, a few teaspoons, give or take a nightstand of two... "What? Can you repeat, I don't understand?"
I took that as a sign to claim Nice as my prize.
A painted green, portable wooden stool with a leather strap. Was it used in a workman's shop, or was it a fisherman's stool?
A rare pair of antique green pottery water jugs cozy up in a straw basket.
Next to the brocante, Les Trois Diables (The Three Devils,) a young trendy bar, with a flashback to the twenties bar maiden on its facade.
"She doesn't belong there... no actually the trendy young bar doesn't belong here..." I argued to myself. Then I heard the wise brocante whisper, "That is the beauty of France; time marches on leaving history intact. France allows tradition to mingle with trendy. It encourages the roaring twenties to slide up against the rappers, it has room for the golden hue of the belle epoque and the sparkling bling bling pierced in the young girl's belly-button... Red Bull and Dom Pérignon, Chanel and cut offs..."
"Nevertheless..." I interrupted, "Darn, just give me the facade!"
I am spoiled like that.
The painted bar maiden looked down at me, "Are you gonna drink it in or not?"
Old apartment buildings.
Clothes hanging out to dry.
French Husband laughed, "You don't want to scrub your clothes down by the river?" Then he added for good measure, "I'll buy you a big basket and scrub board!"
He thinks he is funny.
I told him he is not my only lover... I have Mr. Washer and Mr. Dryer too.
Typical shutters in Nice, if shutters can be typical.
The hardest decision at the brocante in Nice was where to have lunch. I could have lunched everyday for ten years and never had enough time to enjoy the variety of restaurants available . The menus, the atmosphere, the waiters, the flowers and tablecloths .... Wouldn't a progressive lunch be the way to go? To have a drink here, a starter there, a salad at another restaurant, then change tables for the main course, followed by a cheese platter at a bistro and dessert at a cafe?
The brocanteurs lunched at their stands, doing so with flair; Real dishes, not a plastic cup insight, bread in baskets.... the French know how to enjoy the moment, how to soak in the simplicity of day to day life... they bring Renoir to life and give depth to Monet. D
In the middle of the brocante, under the colorful canopies, the brocanteurs dined while discussing Durkheim, the world cup and the price of the teacup in my stand while playing cards.
Magical that day to day stuff...
Like the sign on the wall said, "Butter and Eggs", it is the day to day stuff,
To take it as it comes, gentle blue on one side, the brocante on the other.
Maybe being in Nice helped?
What to cook for dinner? That is question that haunts me every single day around seven in the evening and not a second before. That is my problem.... not thinking in advance what to cook for dinner... let's say around nine or ten in the morning. I do not know what is wrong with me? I never think about dinner until it is time to think about it.... or when my stomach hollers out: Food. Or worse when I open the fridge, and it is empty, and it Sunday, and the grocery stores and markets are over and out... and when the family comes in like happy puppies with friends in tow singing, "What is for dinner Mom?"
Lovely, simply lovely, as I stare into the empty fridge.
There is another problem... I cannot cook until I set the table, which is one of my most favorites things to do. So while I am setting the table my mind calculates what I can whip up at of nothing.
Last night as it was Father's Day I wanted to set the table extra special. I used cloth napkins. The funny thing is there wasn't much in the fridge.... except for a black forest cake that I daresay I did not make.
There is always a bottle of champagne in our fridge, and milk. What is a staple in your fridge?
While setting the table I took out the extra small, white porcelain, dishes that I had found the other day at the brocante. They hold about two large tablespoons of whatever.
Perfect! I had little in the fridge and these extra small, white porcelain dishes would serve it up big.
"It is a feast!" I declared, then laugh and wondered if my family would notice.
Sesame breadsticks, on a silver hotel dish, set the stage for the first and only course I teased.
In the freezer shrimp smiled with their black pepper eyes. Frozen Julienne vegetables jumped up and cheered, "Take me!" In the cupboard I found some coconut cream. I added garlic, and hot chili paste and called it, "Entrée!"
Take a couple of handfuls of fresh spinach,
Add a chuck of Roquefort,
and a handful of walnuts (thanks to my Aunt Louie!)
Blend with a few quick zaps with the Cuisinart (my very best friend in the kitchen!) without make it a mush!
Scoop two spoonfuls on a small plate, add a touch of olive oil, balsamic and salt and pepper.
Serve with sesame bread sticks.
P.S. The secret to cooking on a whim, is knowing there isn't anything to eat for twenty miles around.