Monday, December 22, 2014

Handmade Holidays

          A few days ago my hubby and I decided to have a neighborhood dinner......a get-together after the main event just to relax and reflect. I have been baking for the past few weeks and before I put that mammoth mixer under the cabinet, I decided one more bowl full of goodness into the oven!
          Simona, from Briciole is hosting a handmade gift idea page and this is my contribution. Inside the wrapped packages, banana-nut bread. The recipe is one from Martha Stewarts "Baking Handbook" I received as a gift years ago. This recipe never fails, loaded with goodness and is the perfect sweet bread this time of year. On the back of the Merry, Merry cards I wrote our invitation to the dinner. The bread was baked early enough in the day so I could deliver these packages for my guests to enjoy with a cup of coffee or hot tea!

           "Happy Holidays" to my blogger friends and your family~I wish we lived closer so I could have delivered a treat to you!

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Scenes from our Simply French Tour ~ 2014

 As many of you already know, I own a boutique touring company that caters to women only. Not that I have anything against men, but occasionally gals just want to travel by themselves or with close friends. We are unique as we only take six guests on each trip. All one has to do is show up and the rest is taken care of..... It is a Four Star trip all the way! These are photos from the October trip to Paris and into the countryside, south of Paris ~

                                                           A walk down the Champs Elysees

                                             A lovely drive in the countryside~yes, flowers blooming in the fall!

                            Beautiful drives through the countryside and lots of history lessons!

                                                                 French garden touring

                                            Visiting as many Chateaux as we possible can!

                             You are looking at fresh celery.......huge stalks and luscious color!

                           This is one of the rooms where my guests stay ~simply enchanting!

                              We were able to do wine tastings and get into the vineyards for a first hand look!

 And then we did a little cooking~hoping to remember all the special techniques we were taught!

 Nothing as breathtaking as French floral arrangements!

We spent time at local markets, enjoying the crowds, the flowers, foods and the little critters! Ahhh!