Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Wishing you the best year ever

Another year gone by and I can honestly say I am looking forward to 2009.

2008 is the year that many of us will remember for a long time. It certainly was jam packed with ups and downs. I am thankful to see it "out".

I pray that 2009 will be a positive year for all of us, filled with good health and many blessings.

Over the past 9 months, I have met so many wonderful people through blogging. All of you have left your hand print on my heart and for that I am a much richer person.

From my family to your family, Happy New Year!
May God bless us all.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Finding the ho ho ho

That is not a picture of me but I am looking for the ho ho ho.

It has been a busy week but not with Christmas preparations.
Many of you are aware of the fact that my youngest son is ill. This has been a difficult week health wise for him. We are not sure if he will be in or out of the hospital for Christmas.
I really feel that the spirit of Christmas lives in the heart so it can be celebrated anywhere.

I am so thankful for another year with him. I have wonderful memories of past Christmases with my boys. They have been two of the best gifts I have ever received (hubby too).
This has always been one of my favorite times of the year and this year is no different.
Time with family is one of the best gifts we can ever receive.
Treasure it, it goes by way too fast.

Thursday, December 4, 2008


I came across this old photo from 1958 earlier today.

Yep, that's me with Santa.

I was 4 years old.

I think we both look a little skeptical.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Joyeux Anniversaire to my DH!

Happy birthday to you,
Happy birthday to you,

Happy birthday dear hubbyyyyyy,
Happy birthday to you!

Today is my hubby's birthday (I know you figured that out-hehe).

I am so glad that Jeff introduced us (hooked us up as he says). Without getting all mushy, I am a better person for having you in my life. I love you very much!

If you are reading this at work, beware when you walk through the door.

Monday, December 1, 2008

From a friend...

An old friend sent this to me and I wanted to share it with you.
The author is unknown.

Many people will walk in and out of your life, but only true friends will leave footprints on your heart.
To handle yourself, use your head; to handle others, use your heart.
Anger is only one letter short of danger. If someone betrays you once, it is his fault; if he betrays you twice, it is your fault.

Great minds discuss ideas; average minds discuss events; small minds discuss people.

He who loses money, loses much; he who loses a friend, loses much more; he who loses faith,
loses all.

Beautiful young people are accidents of nature, but beautiful old people are works of art.

Learn from the mistakes of others. You can't live long enough to make them all yourself...

There is no beginning or end. Yesterday is history. Tomorrow is a mystery.
Today is a gift, that's why they call it the present.

I thought I might make a plaque from this. What wisdom in those words.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Have a Wonderful Thanksgiving!

I want to wish everyone a wonderful Thanksgiving.

We all have so much to be thankful for. Even when times are tough, we can always find a blessing.

I consider each of you a true blessing to me. You have brought a sense of community and friendship and for that I am very grateful. I may not be able to visit as much as I would like but you are there in my heart daily.

I trust that each of you have a love filled Holiday.

See you soon!

Lots of hugs and more......

Monday, November 17, 2008

An award and au revoir for a while

Nana Trish honored me with the Marie Antoinette award. Since I love just about all things French, this award was no exception. Thank you, thank you, thank you.

What a pretty award this is. I just love that chubby little cherub in the background by the clock. Marie Antoinette is looking very pretty in this painting.

I would like to pass this on to all the lovely ladies that visit my blog. Please accept it and know that there is a lot of "French love" behind it.

I wish there were more hours in the day to visit everyone. I enjoy reading your posts so much. Right now it is difficult to budget blogging time into the schedule. If there was a way to perhaps read blogs while driving or working, I would be all over it! In a perfect world, there would be time for every thing. Going into the Holidays is always a busy time and this year is no exception. I guess that is a good thing-hehe!

I really am looking forward to catching up but until revoir.

Friday, November 14, 2008

California dreaming and praying

When I saw the news last night showing the fires in Ca, I knew the post I had planned for today needed to change.

I spent many years living in the L.A. area. Santa Barbara and Montecito were always a favorite getaway. Not too far away but it had a different feel to it (a wonderful vibe).

I have some friends that still live in the area and I pray they are safe.

My heart and prayers go out to everyone there. I can't imagine what they are going through.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

The wild, wild west

Hubby and I took a little drive to Prescott a while ago to basically get out of the HEAT.

Prescott (pronounced Preskit) is a charming town with a lot of history. I hope you enjoy the little tour.

Whiskey Row. Wyatt Earp, Doc Holiday and the boys, were frequent visitors.
There are quite a few old saloons.
The local Masonic Temple
Another shot of Whiskey row.
A walkway in the downtown area. I just love the trees, all that shade!

Lots of traffic. Phoenicians trying to get out of the heat-hehe.
Love the benches and this gazebo in the front yard.

Maybe someday......

Courthouse Square. I think it is great that the center of town has its own gazebo.
This is the main hub. It is hard to believe that soon the grass will be covered with snow.
Time goes by wayyyy too fast.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

A little prayer request

Hi everyone,

Many of you know that my precious mother-in-law is very ill. She lives in Co. and we live in AZ.
My husband will be going back up next week. We need to work the trips around his job.
I will be staying here to help my son. I know we are not given more than we can handle.
Any prayers you can send this way would be very much appreciated. Faith has been seeing us through.

You have been so supportive and I just want you to know that it really means the world to us.

hugs and more hugs,

Sunday, November 9, 2008

The Ultimate indulgence

When the weather starts to cool down, my thoughts turn to chocolate. Hot chocolate!
My boys feel the same way. Although the picture was taken years ago (Interlaken, Switzerland),
it always puts a smile on my face. We were enjoying a perfect day with the perfect drink (even if it came from a pack).

The picture below was taken in Angelina's Tearoom in Paris. They "discouraged" picture taking but I took a couple of discreet shots. The tearoom opened in 1903. Just imagine all the people that have indulged in the ultimate pot of hot chocolate.

Isn't it just lovely?
This is a serious indulgence. Definitely worth the price.

In NYC, there is a great place called Serendipity. I used to spend a lot of time in Manhattan and this became a favorite restaurant (a lot of fun). The lines were always long but it was definitely worth the wait. One of their specialties is Frozen Hot Chocolate. A few years ago they published the recipe. I was thrilled!

This is worth the calories ladies!

Frrrozen Hot Chocolate

6 pieces of chocolate (1/2 ounce)
2 teaspoons hot chocolate mix
1 1/2 Tablespoon sugar
1 1/2 cup of milk
3 cups ice

whipped cream
chocolate shavings

chop chocolate and place in the top of a double boiler over simmering hot water.
stir until melted.
add hot chocolate mix and sugar. stir until melted
remove from heat and slowly add 1/2 cup of the milk until smooth.
cool to room temperature.

In a blender, add remaining milk, the room temperature chocolate mix and the ice.
Blend on high until smooth.

Pour into your favorite mug or glass. Top with whipped cream and chocolate shavings.


Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Terrific Tuesday!

Happy Election day to everyone. I was ready to spend the day in line. I had snacks, books, water, phone, and patience. Unbelievably, when I got to the church, there was no line.
I had just missed the first line and was able to walk right in. I was in and out within 10 minutes.
How wonderful was that? I hope you all have an experience like mine.

Also, the mistress of botched hair color (Stephanie, you ROCK) was able to fix my hair. The color looks great and I will NEVER do it myself. This was a lesson I needed to learn-hehe.

I have been working on my bottles as well as some other goodies. The website is up and humming along. I am still loading some items but all in all, the categories are finished (for now).

Big YAY!!

Friday, October 31, 2008

It's not boo-ti-ful! A Halloween boo boo

Well, I have scared myself and poor Tommy! I have had red (faux) hair for years.
Last night I decided I could go from red to dark brown without a problem. I thought this was
something I could do myself. I put the color on and waited 25 minutes. I rinsed it out and took a
look. I am going for the Goth look this Halloween. When my husband heard the laughter, he
came into the bathroom to see what was going on. The look on his face was priceless! I
explained it is only hair and it is not a problem. It will take a bit of getting used to.

When Tommy saw it, he had a peculiar look on his face. And they say dogs can't see color.
Well, I guess it is perfect for Halloween.

Below is my French buddy sporting his beret. We would like to wish everyone a very safe and
fun filled Halloween.

The website is coming along nicely. I have certainly been learning along the way.

Hoping to visit all of you special ladies.

hugs from "Blackie" (me)

Monday, October 27, 2008

A wonderful weekend

Our middle granddaughter Hailey, spent the weekend with us. Although she is just 6, she is wise beyond her years. I know, all grandma's feel that way-hehe. She has a kind heart and a generous spirit. She is a compassionate child and feels very deeply about things. She really is a joy to be around. I am blessed to call her my granddaughter.

Miss Christi gave me this very special award. It is the Blogging Friends Forever Award.
Christi has a lovely, spirit filled blog. She was one of my very first blogging friends. She is what my son calls, "the real deal". I am very honored to receive this from her.

There are rules to go along with this award but right now I am choosing to make my own rules.
Sorry Christi. Everyone that stops by and visits from time to time, I consider a blogging friend (I hope forever). You all mean the world to me.

Please take this and accept it from me. It really does come from my heart.

I have been working on the new website today. I still have a lot of work to do but it is coming along. One step at a time. What more can I ask for?

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

A ride on the merry-go-round of life

It has been a while since my last post. My intention has been to post a couple times a week but life does not always allow that. Last week was a busy one. A few minor health issues or what I call "a little hiccup in the scheme of things". All is o.k and I am still smiling (hehe).

A lot of you have read my previous posts about the FDA globalization Act of 2008. While it has not been put into place, I have felt that I need to make a change. I remember many years ago when I worked for Clinique. When I started with them, ingredients were not even listed on products. No one thought that would ever become mandatory. Now it is difficult to find anyone who remembers life before ingredient listing. I have been listening to the voice inside. You know, the one you hear when you are quiet and receptive. That voice has been telling me for a while that The French Elements needs to evolve and it is evolving as we speak. I guess I needed to have a health set back to really listen and act on what was being revealed to me.

I won't go into the details here but you can read Our story on the new website. Change can be scary, but I know this is a change that I am supposed to make. The look has changed( you rock Cathy), the focus has changed and I could not be happier. It will take some time to get everything up and running.
Right now, only the policies and Our story pages are finished. I hope to have it completed by the end of next week. But if not, I am not stressing about it. Life is way too short!

Yesterday was a long one but look what came in the mail to truly make my day. Sherry had
several giveaways and I was one of the lucky winners. When I came in last night and saw the box, I was so excited. When I opened it up, oh my goodness. The picture doesn't do it justice (shaky hands-hehe). The giveaway was this beautiful cup and saucer but Sherry included the makings of my very own tea party. Miss Hailey may be over this weekend and I intend to have a tea party with her. We will be using everything! The vintage spoon and butter knife will be put to good use. The variety of teas and the cookies-oh yes. This will be a fun party.

Thank you so much Sherry. I love everything and will think of you every time I use my beautiful cup and saucer. You brightened my day!

I also wanted to ask for some extra prayers and good thoughts for both my son and my darling mother-in law. You know about my son's health problems. Please hold him up in prayer.
My dear Mother-in-law has been diagnosed with stage4 ovarian cancer. She is young, only 75.
She is undergoing chemo but it is taking a toll. Please remember her in prayer.

Well, I have rambled on long enough. I am hoping to get around to visit everyone this week. If I don't make it around, know that all of you are in my thoughts and prayers.

Many hugs to each of you.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Try it, it helps

I have to tell you that Put On a Happy face is my new theme song.

It is so easy to get overwhelmed and discouraged.
I have been there, I know.
It is very discouraging to turn on the news and see what is going on in our own neighborhood, country and around the world.

The only thing I can control is my own attitude toward problems. I have faith but it gets tested on a regular basis. There are many setbacks but the one thing that has made a difference is the way I choose to look at life.

We are not abandoned, a promise was made years ago.

A smile can make all the difference.

I hope to visit everyone this week but if I don't make my way around, know that I am smiling.

Friday, October 10, 2008

A MeMe of all things seven and an award

The music today is kind of tongue in cheek. The first time I heard this song I laughed and laughed. I really don't want to talk about me all the time but I thought it related to this post-hehe. Grab a cuppa coffee, this is quite a long post (for me anyway).

The super Tattingchic gave me this sweet award as well as a meme tag.

Thank you so much for the award (created by Diana Evans). It is appreciated more than you know.

The award was designed to be given to the wonderful people that are visited regularly. These are people that have inspired me and shared their wonderful lives with all of us. I only ask that you nominate some of the wonderful people you visit regularly (paraphrased a bit).

I just love all the blogs I visit and only wish time allowed me to visit each of you daily. As fall progresses, I am scrambling for time.

This award is for all my sweet blog friends. Please, please feel comfortable to pick it up and put it on your blog. Same thing with the meme tag. I would love to pass it onto everyone that has not played with this tag.

Don't be shy! Please pick it up and share with us.

Meme- all things 7

1. 7 things I plan to do before I die or DREAM BIG

1. pray to live long enough to see a cure for all cancers and Juvenile Diabetes

2. Take the girls to Europe (dream big). Jeff was Annika's age the first time he went.

3. Learn to knit

4. Learn to tat (TC, you have inspired me)

5. Drive a Grand Prix car ( hubby has fallen off his chair at work if he is reading this)

6. Gain 20 lbs

7. Visit New England in the fall

2. 7 things I do now

1. Try to gain weight

2. Spend time with family and friends

3. craft

4. working on a big change for TFE

5. Advocate for my son

6. Did I mention try to gain weight?

7. spend too much time in the car

3. 7 things I can't do

1. knit

2. tat

3. sing on key

4. open most child proof containers

5. seal resealable bags correctly

6. golf

7. Crochet

4. 7 things that attract me to the opposite sex

1. sense of humor

2. their laugh

3. good vibe

4. spirituality

5. the smile

6. kind eyes

7. honesty

5. 7 things I say most often

1. Yay

2. Oh My

3. oh my goodness

4. What?

5. Huh?

6. Praise God

7. I hate to bother you but......

6. 7 celebrities I admire

1. Paul Newman

2. Audrey Hepburn

3. Mary Tyler Moore

4. Robert Redford

5. Eunice Shriver

6. Mother Theresa

7. Jackie Kennedy Onassis

7. 7 favorite foods

1. Rice pudding

2. Tapioca pudding

3. Ice Cream

4. Salmon

5. salads

6. rice Krispy treats

7. Hot Chocolate from Angelina's

Thanks for reading. This was a longgg post for me-hehe

Everyone have a safe and blessed weekend. Again, please pick this up and run with it.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

A little visit to the Palace

A few weeks ago, hubby and I took a drive up to Prescott. While only about an hour and a half away from the Valley of the sun, it is a different world. Let's start with the temperature. Phoenix was 103 that day. The high in Prescott was 77. Prescott is a mile high city. Doing the happy dance!

We had lunch in The Palace. It first opened in 1877 but a lot of historians think it may have opened in 1868. It is the oldest frontier saloon in AZ and well known in the US.

Doc Holiday, Wyatt and Virgil Earp frequented it while living in Prescott. Who knew?
A lot of history took place in this saloon.

Little Egypt dance there in 1910.

In 1971, the movie Junior Bonner was filmed there. It starred Steve McQueen (be still my heart), Robert Preston and Ida Lupino.

Several others including Wanda Nevada and Billy Jack shot scenes there.

The middle photo shows a fantastic collage of all things Arizonian. Truly incredible. I would have loved to see if up close and personal but didn't want to disturb the guests sitting below it.

The shot above shows the Brunswick bar that is still in use today. The palace was destroyed by the Whiskey Row fire on July 14, 1900. The bar patrons actually carried the bar across the street to the main plaza in Prescott and continued on with their business as if nothing had happened.

If you are interested in reading more about the history of the Palace, they have a website.

Please take a little time to visit


Monday, October 6, 2008

A birthday bash or getting mileage out of Kool and the gang

Last Saturday was Annika's belated birthday party. Due to Dorothy's mom passing on, the party was put on hold for a while. Her mother had planned on having the party at her house this year.
Her dad honored her plan so the party was held there. It was a lot of fun and Annika was Princess for a day.

She is a little dancing Queen. Definitely takes after her sisters.

Every girl needs a pink scooter and accessories. Isn't this cute?

J and D's friend Caroline and her husband started the "shoe thing". These are Disney princess shoes in a variety of colors. Jayde and Hailey are planning on sharing these with their sister.

The little Princess with Caroline.

Grandma, Sweetpea and Elmo. They say the camera adds 10 lbs.... can you imagine? He-He.

Thank you for your prayers. We appreciate them very, very much. I am hoping on visiting this week and catching up on some blog reading. If you miss a day.... oh my.

Have a fantastic week.

Saturday, October 4, 2008

Even La Tour Eiffel is dancing

We have a winner and even the Eiffel Tower is dancing. I just love this photo. If this doesn't put a smile on your face, I don't know what will!

I would like to thank everyone that entered my 100+ post giveaway. I love reading your comments and I have to tell you they put a smile on my face.

The names were written on pieces of paper and put into one of my favorite containers.
Hubby participated by pulling out the winning name.

And the winner is ANGIE! I am doing the happy dance for your Angie.
Please send me your address and I will get your goodies out on Monday. My email is: barb(at)thefrenchelements(dot)com.

I love giveaways (both giving and winning-hehe) and will be having another one before the Holiday season.

This has been a week to remember. My youngest is ill as many of you know. He went into the hospital earlier this week but praise God, is home again. Please say a little prayer for him. We truly appreciate it.

Have a marvelous weekend.

Monday, September 29, 2008

Thank you Tattingchic and Sherry from Edie Marie's Attic

Miss Tattingchic from sunny California, gave me this incredible award before I took my little break. I really don't think I am a super commenter. In fact most of the time, I think my posts are kind of boring-hehe. I truly appreciate this award Miss Tattingchic and you have inspired me to keep moving forward. Thank you soooo much! Her blog is amazing and you will learn something in every post (you'll laught also). She is a lot of fun. In case you didn't know, she is the Queen of tatting.

I have been talking about the fact that there is no Fall here in the Valley of the sun.
Who needs Fall when I won it!!! Sherry from Edie Marie's Attic had a super duper giveaway and I was one of the lucky recipients. Isn't this a beautiful cup and saucer? I just LOVE it!
Sherry also is one of my bookmarked blogs. Her blog is an inspiring, fun read too.

Today is her hubby's Birthday so please swing by and wish Wes a happy one.

Again, thank you so much my friends. You ladies ROCK!
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