vendredi 25 juillet 2014

Recipe : Quiche Lorraine

If you have been reading my blog, then you would know that I am from France. However, I've never really mentioned where from. My region is called Lorraine, you may have heard about Alsace-Lorraine before, well that's pretty much it. 

My place is located in East of France, 2h away from the German border. If I can, I will try to show you a few things from my place but for now, I thought I would share a few recipes of traditional and local food. There are so many though and I wasn't sure where to start but I've finally opted for a Quiche Lorraine, which is something you probably know already. 
I thought it would be interesting to show you how easy it is to cook and maybe this will inspire you to try it at home.


  • Shortcrust pastry
  • 200g of bacon
  • 50g of grated Cheddar
  • 150mL of crème fraiche
  • 200mL of single cream
  • 3 eggs
  • Salt and Pepper

Instructions :
Pre-heat your oven to 190°C
Roll out the shortcrust pastry and place it on a fluted flan tin covered with baking paper.

For your filling, start by cutting the bacon in small pieces and cook it in a frying pan until they are golden and slightly crispy. 
Scatter the bacon and half of the cheese over the bottom of the pastry case.

Mix the creme fraiche and the single cream together with a fork. Beat the eggs and add them to cream mix. Add some salt and pepper, the rest of the cheese and pour in your pastry case.

Cook in the oven for 30 minutes, the top of your quiche has to be slightly golden. 
Let it cool down for a few minutes. 

You can serve it hot or cold, it will be delicious either way! I served mine cold with some salad on the side. 

dimanche 20 juillet 2014

Blog's 1st Anniversary Giveaway!!!

This month marked something rather important for me, this blog's first anniversary. Now, I know I have been a bit inconsistent with my posts over the year but I've never felt the need to blog so much than I do now, so I am in for a while.
I thought I would organise a little giveaway to celebrate this and I hope you guys will like it. Although I would love it to be international, this giveaway is for UK residents only.


I'm hosting this giveaway on Rafflecopter so I'm assuming you all know how it works. Good luck to you all and please feel free to have a look at some of my posts while you're here.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

jeudi 17 juillet 2014

An afternoon on the lake

One of our friends has a speed boat and with the sun who finally decided to come back, we thought it was the perfect excuse to use it for the first time this year. Normally, I always find an excuse not to go, simply because I am very sea-sick but this time, Mr. T and his friend managed to convince me to go with them. They love wake-boarding and kneeboarding so these two always try to go whenever they can and I have to admit I was a bit curious to know what it was like.

I had no idea of what to expect. Was I going to be sick the whole time? Well, you will be glad to know that I was perfectly fine. It took me a few minutes to adjust to that slow rocking motion, but when we were at full speed, I couldn't have been feeling any better.
We rented a lake for 4 hours at Russel Watersports in Eversley, Berkshire and it really is worth it if you own your boat. If you don't, you always have the option to rent one or just opt for jet skies which are so much fun too!

Anyway, I thought I would show a couple of photos instead of writing about it.

lundi 14 juillet 2014

Help, all my friends are pregnant and married!

Have you ever had this feeling that everyone around you is either getting married or expecting a baby, all pretty much at the same time? I have! Especially now, it feels like these past 6 months have been a succession of weddings, invites for future weddings and babies announcements.

It never stops, when you least expect it, another one comes up. The latest one having occurred just yesterday… I got back from work and Mr. T came out of the kitchen to casually told me "Oh, have I told you about J and D? They're 13 weeks pregnant." As much as I am happy for them, I also have to admit that there is a tiny hint of jealousy in me. I know I should never compare my life to someone else's but it looks like I can't help it. Everyone is buying their house, they are all engaged and they all are planning or already expecting babies. Which makes me wonder if my turn will finally come. 

Photograph: i love images/Alamy
At the moment, I have to work really hard on being able to trust Mr. T again. He's done something stupid, I can't trust him anymore and I am mad at him for that. So bloody and incredibly mad! I act like everything is better now but they aren't. It was always going to be a matter of days before we would go back to where we were. Sadly, this wasn't a very good place. Definitely not the kind of place where you can plan seriously on getting a house or even talking babies. This is killing me so much on the inside, I feel absolutely empty but I believe, and hope, things will get better. They have to! Because despite everything, I still want the future I imagined for us both. 

But back to the point, I don't know if it's something that comes with age but it's funny how I've just realised the amount of my friends who are pregnant and married. We're all pretty much 25 years old, or slightly more so I suppose this is the time when it all happens but wow, this is quite impressive. My Facebook news feed is slowly getting full of photos of bumps, new borns and white dresses. Seriously, when on earth did that happen? It feels like we were at school just yesterday, writing letters to each other on our notebooks or talking about boy crushes.

Any of you feel the same way? Or have been at some point?

mardi 8 juillet 2014

A weekend in Devon #2

As I finally got a weekend off, we decided it would be nice to go away for a couple of days so naturally, we went to Devon in Mr. T's family cottage. The weather was meant to be okay and we definitely could use some family time so off we went on Friday night.

Now, I already blogged about what we're normally up to in Devon, so this time I thought I would make a little video. It's not great as the camera I used is getting a bit old and used, but it did the job. I hope you enjoy watching.

jeudi 3 juillet 2014

Technology is a passion-killer

Source : Google Images

Last night, I was in bed with the boyfriend (let's call him Mr. T from now on) and once again, I found myself very annoyed by the fact he was on his iPad, ignoring me completely.

Everyday, he comes back from work and goes straight to either his iPad, checking all the updates on social networks and then spend hours on eBay. In all fairness, he does have a bit of an addiction for eBay but jeeeez, I just wished he could get his eyes off of his tablet for 5 minutes and actually have a conversation with me. When we go to bed, his phone normally takes over the iPad for one last visit on Facebook/Snapchat/eBay/instagram before he goes to sleep, leaving me frustrated.

I have tried many things to get his attention. I explained to him how it made me feel, but still no reaction from his part. I have tried to turn it off while he was using it but he would just get annoyed with me. I have even tried to be a cheeky girl and going to bed under-dressed but still, nothing! So many attempts but yet, nothing has changed.

So I'm starting to think that maybe, it's just a normal thing nowadays. Maybe, technology has invaded every couples' relationship, ruining any hope of intimacy and complicity. Mr. T and I used to be so passionate about each other, especially him but then time flies and it seems to fade and be replaced by stuff like that. Well, that's rubbish! I don't like. I liked it a lot more when he used to drop everything just to cuddle for a little while. Sadly now, it's like it doesn't matter anymore.

Having said all that, I do feel grateful for one thing. He's not too bothered about video games and football. THANK GOD FOR THAT! This might be one of the things that I genuinely feel so thankful for because if it were one of his hobbies, then I'm pretty sure I wouldn't have any chance of communicating with him at all.

What about you girls? Do you feel like technology has taken over the passion in your relationship as well? What do you do about it? Any tips will be gladly taken...

mercredi 25 juin 2014

You know you work in a hotel when...

Having worked in a hotel for a year, I now have a pretty clear idea of all the pros and cons of a job in hospitality. Sadly, there are more cons than pros…
The biggest being that working in a hotel pretty much entails you to put aside your personal life. You will either have to work very early or very late, as well as weekends. Forget about bank holidays and Christmas, they are the busiest times in the year so you don't stand a chance if you ask them off. 

This job has been a real struggle in my relationship, as I am working most evenings and weekends, meaning I barely see my partner. Just like me, he is exhausted when I come back home, therefore we just eat and go straight to sleep. Weekends are the worst, they are the days where I just want to be home with my boys but can't, because I have to be on shift at 7am or up until 9pm.
Unfortunately, this is the lifestyle that comes with the job and this is very unlikely to change anytime soon. 

However, there are many other things that you should be prepared to deal with, should you wish to work in a hotel one day. Basically, you know you work in hospitality when...

  • … you don't have a personal life anymore. Your friends are now people from the staff.
  • … you see drunk people, who had a bit too much fun in the bar, starting to dance on tables, in the lifts, etc... Loud and messy, they are pretty bad but not the worst.
  • … you have to clean after dirty guests. Now, THEY are the worst. They mess up with your mini-bar, leave rubbish on the floor, blood or other substances on the bed sheets, wine on the walls… Recently, I came across an used sanitary towel left on the floor. Housekeeping can quickly become a nightmare.
  • … you slowly become scared of your own phone. When you finally have a day off and your phone rings, this can never be good. Half the time, you're sure that they are calling you to come and cover for someone else.
  • … you can't remember the last time you had two days off in a row.
  • … waking up at 4am is standard practice. 
  • … you check in musicians. These are a very special kind of guests. They normally are a mix of everything that you hate in guests. 
  • … everyone in the hotel is starting to date each other because we spent so much time in this place.
  • … your partner think he/she is dating a ghost.
  • … you have a speech ready for guests who think they know how to do your job better than you.
  • … you find a couple at 3am doing their business in the toilets…!
  • … you work 150 hours a month and still earn peanuts.
  • … you run to the closest shop to buy 20L of orange juice because they ran out in the brasserie for breakfast.
  • … you realise what date it is when you day dot your products.
  • … you feel you had a very good day when no one actually shouted at your face. 
  • … you're meant to finish your shift at 4.30 but you're still there at 5.30 and nowhere to be finished.
  • … you walk around the hotel with 5 different card keys in your pocket.
  • … you know most people in town by their drink and food preferences rather than their names.

samedi 21 juin 2014

Driving to France with a dog

"Are we there yet, mommy?"

I just got back from France where I spent a week visiting my family and for the first time, I brought my little Woody with me. I am not going to lie, I was very nervous before leaving... Not only was I going to be on my own, driving for 10 hours, but I had a puppy at the back of my car to look after too.
I wasn't too sure of what to expect so I prepared myself as much as I could and it really helped on the grounds that it was also horribly hot when we arrived on the French soil. 

Here are a few tips that could help you one day if you drive to France with your dog. 
  • Book in ADVANCE! Seriously, plan well ahead! This is very important, purely because they won't let you cross if you don't have all the paperwork ready. I'm not sure about cats, but for a dog to go to the continent, you only need to pay an extra ticket for her. However, when you come back to the UK, this is where you need to be careful. Your dog must have been microchipped, had the rabies vaccinations at least 21 days and a tapeworm treatment (given by a vet) between 1 and 5 days before you return in the UK! Everything has to be stamped, signed and dated in your dog's passport.

  • WATER! Bring loads with you. And I mean loads. My dog drank about 1,5L because of the heat. We didn't plan it to be so hot and I am so glad I had two big bottles with me.

  • Make sure your best friend is comfortable. I drove for more than 7 hours and I can't imagine anything worse than an uncomfortable dog at the back. If they are comfy, they will be more than happy to lay there and have a nap. If your dog tends to be sick in the car, consider asking your vet if they can help with that.

  • Stop often. Because it was so hot, I stopped every hour. I was mostly concerned about Woody dehydrating so we had 15 to 30 minutes breaks every hour. Just enough to give him some water and walk him to stretch his legs.

  • Have everything ready in a place where it's easy to access. A spare lead, harness, a blanket, bowls, food/treats… I put everything at the front, so it was very easy for me to reach without having to remove bags and suitcase.

  • Feed your dog with light meals. Just for practical reasons, you don't want him to die for a poo when you're in the middle of the motorway or worse, stuck in traffic!

  • Get your dog a car belt. They are very easy to use and it could stop your dog from jumping to the front or distract you while driving. There is no law that will force you, but it's a question of safety, both for your dog and yourself. Otherwise, you can also crate him in the boot.

  • Book a room in a dog friendly hotel if your journey is very long. It is best to stop and go progressively.

  • Make a list of vet surgeries, dog friendly places to stop and rest. Don't wait until something goes wrong before trying to find a vet, you'll thank yourself if you already know where to go. Bring along your insurance paperwork too and anything related to his health that could become relevant.

Meeting a horse for the first time
Tired and very hot after a long journey. Nothing better than cool tiles.

mardi 10 juin 2014

Oh no, I am homesick...

Here it is again, that horrible feeling. I am homesick. 
For those who don't know it, I am French and have been living/working in the UK for about 3 years. Now, I never really used to be homesick but since last year, it keeps hitting me very badly and quite regularly. Thankfully enough, I have my lovely boyfriend and my beautiful dog here for me but there are things that I miss desperately.

My cousins, my sister and myself a very long time ago.

I miss my family so bad that it hurts sometimes. You would think that Facebook is a tool to make things easier but it actually makes it even harder for me as I keep seeing photos of my family gathering together and I am here, 700km away, missing absolutely everything. 
Our family has always been very close, especially my cousins and I. We all grew up together in the same small French village, which brought us very close. In fact, I see one of them almost as my brother. We have spent so much time together that it was very strange when I first moved to the UK, but I eventually got used to it. Obviously, we've all grown a lot since the time we used to build tree houses in the woods or go to our grandparents house to nick some strawberries from the garden and we've all started to build our own families but there is this bond between us that keeps getting stronger and stronger as time goes on. 

Gathered for our grandparents 60th anniversary!

To be fair, it is all my fault. I probably should have never left my village in the first place but then, I would have never met my boyfriend and lived all of these cool experiences. It was such a satisfying thing to do, get out of my countryside to live a little, discover new things, new cultures… 
But now, I just wanna go back to my peaceful village in the eastern French countryside and build my life and family there.

Lil' Sister

I don't know if it will ever be possible. My boyfriend can't speak French and really struggles to learn it, so it seems very unlikely that he could find a job over there. He has his own family and friends here in the UK, so it would also be not right if I asked him to leave them all to follow me in France. 
People don't realise how much I wish we could have a life back there. Things are so much easier, so much more quiet and peaceful. There is no drama, just a nice and simple family life. We could build our house there, have children (another thing that is currently a lot on my mind), have more dogs, enjoy the nice weather, have a swimming pool in the garden for the children, go and visit my parents every weekend instead of twice a year. I want my mother to see her grandchildren growing up.

This is my dream. This is all I want. Is it too much? 

mardi 18 mars 2014

Puppy is growing fast!

8 weeks old

9 weeks old

10 weeks old

12 weeks old

13 weeks old

14 weeks old

15 weeks old

17 weeks old

mercredi 5 mars 2014

A weekend in Devon

I am very lucky to have a boyfriend who owns a small family cottage in Devon. During the year, the cottage is for rent to anyone who wishes to have a break in the area, but when it's available, we always try to make the most of it by coming whenever it's possible. 

Funny fact is : this is where my boyfriend took me for our second date. No need to say that at first, I was terrified by the idea of staying in this family cottage when I barely knew him. But eventually, he managed to convince me to go with him as there also was a meteor shower occurring on that weekend.
Obviously I will never regret saying yes to that weekend because two years later, I am back in the cottage with the man I love more than ever and our adorable puppy. 

Anyway, Devon is such an amazing place if you're looking for somewhere calm and resting. The cottage is in North Devon so we normally go to Bude where you can go on very nice walks on the beach. This is great because most of the beaches are dog friendly so we got to enjoy it with Woody. And he LOVED the sea. It was also funny as he got surprised by a couple of big waves and he refused to go back in the water after that. 

On the other hand, if you're a city person, you may find Devon a bit boring as you always struggle to find signal on your phone, everything is miles apart and it's all about living in the quiet countryside and go on long walks or work in your garden. 

I've grown up in a place like that, the only difference was the small bakery in my village. But apart from that, I know perfectly what living in the countryside is like and I used to hate it. Actually no, that's a lie. I used to love it as a child, then hated it as a teenager. Which was one of the reason I left it and moved to the UK at 17years old. But now, I'm 24 and this is definitely a lifestyle that inspires me again. I apparently give the impression of being a city girl, but I'm really not anymore. I'm looking forward to quiet days in a calm and big house with massive garden, surrounded by the woods and endless fields. This is not for everyone and to be fair, I was convinced for a long time it wasn't for me either, but today this is all I want. 

Either way, if you ever get the chance to go to Devon, I strongly advise you to visit Bude. It's a great little town, with many beaches. By Sainsbury's, there is one long and beautiful beach that you will love. Car park is only 50p/hour. You also have the possibility of going up the hill where you will find a beautiful café and cliffs to walk on.

mardi 25 février 2014

I said "I'll love you forever", he replied "I believe that"

Love hurts. I don't know if that's the case for everyone but it is for me. My boyfriend and I have been together for two years now, which doesn't seem that long when you think about it. But two years are definitely long enough to make you fall in love deeply with someone and I do love him profoundly and devotedly. Now, I have no doubt that he loves me back but as a man, his way of showing it sometimes lacks of subtlety. 

A couple of days ago, we were talking about future and random things when the topic eventually changed to wedding. His parents are divorced and this is something that truly upset him, even nowadays, 10 years after it happened. Their divorce has such a big impact on him that he doesn't believe in marriage anymore and doesn't see the point in it, which is understandable. But I do see the point and I really want it to happen one day. I do want to be his wife and change my name to his. Call me old-fashioned, but I want him to see me in a white dress and hear him say I do. 

Which brings me back to the conversation we were having and when I tried to explain to him that every person was different and it was up to us to make it work, he didn't seem that convinced. Obviously, this is not something that we can change overnight but it is very painful when you, then, say that you will love him forever, and his answer is a simple "I believe that". Slap me in the face and spit on me if you like, my ego and heart would have been less hurt by that. He did try to save it by saying he loved me a lot, but I just couldn't forget the fact that he wasn't able to tell me the same, that he wasn't sure if he would love me forever.

I'm scared of this constant threat that he might just stop loving me one day, that he just won't find me funny and interesting anymore, that he will want his freedom back and not have to worry about someone else but himself. I can't see my future without him and according to him, he doesn't his without me either but he can't tell me that he will love me forever. 
Love hurts, and I don't know if this is how it's meant to be. Does that make me stupid to hope that he will want me to be his wife one day? Does that make me an idiot to hope that he wishes for us to be forever together. 

mercredi 19 février 2014

Oh, that need to write again...

I am back on this blog, and hopefully this time I will manage to be more consistent. Having said that, those past few months have been quite eventful for me, so much that there was just no way for me to sit down and write posts on here.

I spent loads of time working and focusing on working extra hard to get noticed by my management and I believe it worked out pretty well as I got a promotion. Even though it's not a dream job, I got promoted to Supervisor. Which implied a training and extra hours at work to get around everything I needed to learn.
Then Christmas came and it was like a super duper mad time. I work in Malmaison Reading hotel, in which we have a wonderful bar and brasserie so obviously, it got very busy with all the Christmas parties. It was tough and there were days where I was working from 7am to 10pm but it was all worth it as I also got an award from the company for my hard work. This was so rewarding and seriously encouraged me to carry on working hard.

Fortunately, this madness eventually ended and I got to go back home in France. Icing on the cake, my boyfriend came with me to spend Christmas with me and my family. That was the first time he was coming in France with me and therefore, the first time he met my family. I'm not sure he enjoyed it too much when he ended up in a room with my 8 uncles and aunties, along with my 10 cousins. This was especially hard for him as he can't communicate with them at all, he doesn't speak French and never learnt. I have tried to teach him a little but he quickly gave up. Which isn't very promising for a future living in France. If anything, I think it comforted him in the fact he was better off staying in the UK, but we'll see about that in due time.

We have a dog! I told you that in a previous post, but since then it actually happened and we are now the proud owners of a fluffy Golden Retriever puppy. It's been hard work. In fact, it's been extremely hard work but that's what puppies are. There was no way things were gonna be easy. But he is learning a lot and training is going well. I probably will write a lot about him because my life seems to revolve around him. He's a baby after all, he requires a lot of attention and time, but I'm more than happy to as I love him to bits. Oh and by the way, his name is Woody.