Thursday, 24 June 2010

Mega Post!

Apologises for my bloggie absence. I only intended to be gone for a week, but I have been so busy, hence the mega post!

The first week of June we went on holiday to Paris. I have only previously passed through Paris so this was my first proper visit to this elegant city.

We spent a morning at the Louvre admiring the paintings and sculptures. We could have stayed a lot longer, but our time in Paris was limited to two days and we wanted to cram as much in as possible.

Of course, the Mona Lisa was a must see.

This mosaic features just a few of my favourite paintings in the Louvre.
1. Venus & the Three Graces, Botticelli fresco from Villa Lemmi near Florence, 2. The Coronation of the Virgin, Guido di Pietro (Fra Angelico) Circa 1430-2, 3. Le Rake a Oxford, William Hogarth, 4. Roger delivering Angelique, Jean-Auguste- Dominique Ingres 1819, 5. Weymouth Bay, 1818/9 John Constable, 6. A young man is presented by Venus (?) to the Seven Liberal Arts, Botticelli fresco from Villa Lemmi near Florence, 7. The Rialto Bridge, Antonio Canal /Canaletto, 8. Gallery of Views of Ancient Rome, Giovanni Paolo Pannini, 1758, 9. La Sainte Famille dit La Vierge de Seville- 1665/70, Bartolome Esteban Murillo, 10. View of Salisbury, John Constable, 11. Conversation in a Park, 1745 Thomas Gainsborough, 12. Lady Alston, Thomas Gainsborough, 13. Edgar Degas, 14. Pandemonium by John Martin, 15. Renoir, 16. Night and Dawn, Jean-Baptiste Champaigne.

If I had to choose just 3 of the amazing sculptures, it would be these ones -
Winged Victory of Samothrace, Greece Circa 190BC

The Dying Slave,Michelangelo Buonarroti

Venus de Milo/Aphrodite, Late 2nd Century BC
The Louvre itself is stunning.

Arc de Triomphe du Carrousel, The Jardin du Carrousel, opposite the Louvre.Me by the Seine, enroute to ...
Notre Dame.

The famous West Rose Window, is one of 3 such windows in Notre Dame.
The North Rose Window.

We climbed the 387 steps up to the Gallery of Gargoyles.
These ones look quite menacing.
View of Sacre-Coeur.
East end of Notre Dame with its 15m span flying buttresses.

L'Arc de Triomphe.

Tomb of the Unknown Solider.
Photography isn't allowed inside the Basilica. The mosaic inside the dome took 10 years to complete and suffice to say it made two teenagers sit and stare at it in awe. I have never seen anything so beautiful - truly awesome.
We climbed more steps, this time only 234, to the outer galley around the dome.

Monmartre Vineyard, the last surviving vineyard in Paris.
I love anything Art Nouveau, so trailing my family to various Metro stations was a must.
It was exceedingly hot during our week away, so standing on this Metro vent outside the Moulin Rouge was very cooling.
We visited the Musee de l'Orangerie, in the Jardin des Tuileries, to see Monet's "Nympheas". I have long admired Monet's work and to be able to see "The Waterlilies" for real was a privilege.
By now you have probably gathered that we walked and walked whilst on holiday!

This is Place de la Concorde, in the Tuileries Quarter

and its 3,200 year old obelisk from Luxor. Looking up the Avenue des Champs Elysees from the Place de la Concorde.
On the beautiful Art Noveau Pont Alexandre III, Champs-Elysees.

Our final destination in Paris was La Tour Eiffel.
We timed it for the hourly illuminations.

The other two full days that we were in France, we spent at the two Disney Parks. This was our daughter's 18th birthday treat.

First stop Disneyland Paris and we were soon whizzing upside down, on our first ride of the day, Indiana Jones & the Temple of Peril. We did this ride twice!

Us on The Pirates of the Caribbean ride. By the look on my face this must have been when I was getting splashed!
Buzz Lightyear's Laser Blast.
Skull Rock.
Phantom Manor.

The Riverboat and Big Thunder Mountain train.
Us on the Big Thunder Mountain ride.
We enjoyed the many shows and parades.

If this is what you get when you kiss a frog, I am going frog-hunting!

Another day we went to the Walt Disney Studios.

First ride of the day, which we also did twice, was Rock 'n' Roller Coaster.

Vehicle from "Armageddon".

"Singing in the Rain".

His singing stopped even the rain!
The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror.

Movie Set from "Dinotopia".
Catastrophe Canyon
The original "Herbie" at the Moteurs ... Action! Stunt Show.
Star 'n' Cars Parade.

We had an amazing week and returned home to a lush garden
and a jungle of plants in the green house waiting to go to the allotment.
The following weekend was spent planting all of these. I have grown more pumpkins this year thinking that our 2nd allotment would be ready, but that isn't until mid July now, so everything had to squish-up at the allotment.
Then we entered the birthday season!
First mine ...
My parents came to stay and brought these roses for me.
I have turned into a Trollbead addict! I already have a bracelet that is getting full, so my husband gave to me a Trollbead Fantasy necklace and my other gifts were more Trollbeads.
Next my son's 15th birthday ...
We took him to see "The Prince of Persia" film and went out to lunch.
Mini Puds!

He is a "Nightmare Before Christmas" fan, so his cake this year was a Jack Skellington, made with my usual boiled fruit cake recipe.

His new bike.
It was also Father's Day...
This is the card I gave to my Dad as he is my hero.
And now we are nearing the end of June and soon it will be my husband's birthday!

The garden has also been keeping me busy. I adore this time of year in the garden.

So as you can see I have been so busy that I need another holiday! ;) Luckily my working hours have just been altered, as a trial, so that I only work for two whole days now instead of 4 shorter ones. I'm hoping this works out, as I think it will enable me to be better organised at home and maybe I won't leave such a gap in my blogging! I hope you have made it this far on my long-winded post!:) Best wishes Pj x


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Rowan said...

Sounds as though a good time was had by all. Did they let you take photos in the Louvre? I'm amazed if they did as I can't imagine it being allowed in the National Gallery! I've always thought I'd like to visit Monet's house at Giverny - maybe one day.

thesnailgarden said...

Hi Rowan, hope your wrist is on the mend. Yes, you can take photo's in the Louvre and Musee d'Orangerie. The only place it wasn't allowed, was in Sacre-Coeur. I too have always wanted to visit Giverny, we didn't have time this holiday, but plan on a return trip another year. Best wishes, Pj x

ren said...

wow! great photos looks like a fab time was had by all.
Trollbeads, i am intrigued i have just come across 'pandorra' braclets these look similar. I think some kind of charm braclet thing is going on my wish list for my birthday!!


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Oleksandr Solomakha said...

good pictures, greetings to you from the Ukraine

Tim, Lisa, Trenton, and Grant said...

Enjoyed it!