7 Sept 2013


We started our day with watching little and big boats on the lake while having our coffee, and different sorts of croissants. After breakfast Dominique decided to check through the villa and see what had to be cleaned or tidied up  (especially the cupboards in the kitchen, as her 3 children with partners had used the house just before us

While I was useless I  installed my "office" with view on the lake.

Nicole helped her in the kitchen

Then she prepared the beach beds and checked the temperature of the swimming pool. It was a little cool, but in the afternoon Dominique used it.

We spent the whole afternoon there, napping, reading and chatting, and of course taking sunbathes !

Far too lazy to move we just did some shopping for the evening, fortunately there is the same deep freeze food shop " Picard" just a few little streets far,  as we have in Waterloo, and had a very good supper.

The time went by so quickly and we finally were again so tired from nearly doing nothing, that we went early to bed.

6 Sept 2013


more participants at Susanne at Living to tell the Story.

1. On Monday I prepared my suitcase and gathered all things I would take along to Thonon les bains in France. In the afternoon Dominique let me try out her car, as we wanted to share the driving. It worked very well as her car is very similar to mine and I got familiar with it right away.

2. We made the first part of our trip until Troyes (see post below )

4. and 5.

I woke up this morning and went outside my room. This was the view I had. So beautiful. We couldn't use the swimming pool yet because something had to be repaired. But that didn't really matter.

The villa has 3 terraces on 3 different levels all with view on the lake. The first one is just outside the living room, the second one to sit in the shade with help of an umbrella and finally the terrace with the swimming pool which is on the same level as the bedrooms and the bar/ hobby room.

Our living room and the bar,  so far unused because it's far to sunny and warm to sit inside

While Dominique and Nicole did the shopping, I answered emails and made pictures. When they came back we prepared our lunch, salad different kind of cheese and mozzarella with tomatoes. It was delicious.

After lunch we all lay on the beach beds around the swimming pool and rested, napped or read.

Later afternoon we went for our first visit to Thonon along the lake.

We took the funicular train which brought us up to the town center. I had never taken such a train !

There was a quiet big market and we strolled around but not for very long, we were quiet hungry. The supper was quickly prepared, we had salmon with pasta in a delicious sauce, all bought ready to heat up in the micro wave ! After all we are on holidays and none of us is very keen to cook.

We had our first full holiday in Thonon with a lot of fun and laughter !

5 Sept 2013


Jenny Matlock
more participants at Jenny Matlock's Alphabet Thursday

Together with my two friends Nicole and Dominique, we started our first part towards Thonon les bains at the Geneva lake, but on the French side.

We had about 860 km to drive, which we split into two, first Dominique drove and then I took over after a delicious picnic at a rest area on the highway until our stop in Troyes.

We had booked in a very old but very nice hotel and had a big room for 4 people. It was located in the town center so we could easily walk through the little streets, have an ice cream in front of the city hall on a big place and also looked for a restaurant for the evening.

After we had checked into hour hotel, we walked through the very beautiful old city all houses dating from the 15/16 th century ! Nicole found an intriguing opening in  a wall and of course had to found out what was in there. Besides a big spider and some dust there was nothing. Nicole jumped away and we laughed, she doesn't like spiders and apparently the spider didn't love her either, it run away.

Suddenly Dominique saw a very small side street with the name "Cat street" and she laughed and said it would be the perfect street for me ! And at the end of the little street was a beautiful very old restaurant away from the huzzle and buzzle of the tourist places. We looked at the menu written on a wooden cat  and decided we would go back there for supper. The whole place was decorated with cats and looked very cozy.

The place (and food) was absolutely lovely and we had a lot of fun. Nicole showed us with a napkin that orange is her color ! Quiet tired we returned to the hotel.

The next morning I drove the first part out of Troyes and without any problem, thanks to Mme GPS !
We stopped for a picnic and a coffee and finally arrived at our destination in Thenon.

Dominique owns a huge villa there with view on the lake, I almost needed my GPS not to get lost in this big house. We had bought some food for supper ate on the terrace overlooking the lake and very tired went to bed very early. Tomorrow is another day !

View over the Geneva lake during supper, the swimming pool and part of the second terrace.

and here we are, more photos are to come. The day was quiet long !

4 Sept 2013


more participants here

Since today I am here for 10 days !

3 Sept 2013


For the wedding of our son in Amsterdam he had to find a Hotel for all guests from abroad ! Not easy to find as Hotels in Amsterdam are usually very expensive.  The problem too was that there were many young children amongst the guests. He finally found an ideal place, the Amsterdam Country Home located in North Amsterdam and only 10 min far from Amsterdam city center by car. Read more here

2 Sept 2013


Helps you to remember what you have done on the weekend of August 17 . If you participate please put the little logo on the top of your post and leave your link.

The highlight of the weekend was our son's wedding in Amsterdam !

I had used all my imagination to make a nice envelope for the wedding gift basket.

The trip to Amsterdam went smooth and we were already there around 11 am. We first stopped at my son's for a coffee, took his friend from Switzerland along and went to the Bed and Breakfast where they had booked in all friends with kids coming from abroad.

We had a beautiful huge room all in wood !

As the parking fees in Amsterdam are so expensive we all decided to take a taxi. The owner called for 3, no van was available. And then the nightmare began. All streets to Amsterdam center were blocked by a huge traffic jam because two bridges were closed for work. We all thought we would never make it, but we arrived finally with only 5 min late for the ceremony which should have begun at 3 pm. As the others had the same problem, even the groom and the bride, we recovered from being nervous wrecks !

And then began a big surprise for all of us. Nobody had ever attended to such a funny, cool wedding ceremony. The female marriage registrar greeted us on the street and comforted us that it didn't matter at all that we were a little late. Groom and bride made their entrance and we were sitting all around, the kids waving with balloons and the adults joking ! Toby their son had decided to sit besides his parents, but then preferred to sit on grandma's lap.

Then the wedding registrar started her official speech and took one little girl on her lap, because the little one had decided so ! Of course that made us all laugh again. Toby handed the wedding bands over to his parents and did a real good job.

The book was signed and the joyful ceremony was over and the new weds drove away to a restaurant at a habour where the wedding reception took place. Toby waved to the crowd. We drove together with Marieken's mother and her partner to the reception, the others followed by taxi.

The place was beautiful and called "The lighthouse" very close to the sea. After drinks and snacks we had a wonderful barbecue. Toby had taken his shoes off so I had given him mine, but he only did a few steps before he stepped out !

Then started the speeches ! Marieken's mother had prepared a nice long speech, but unfortunately there was no microphone so we could hardly hear her and she held it in Dutch because she said her English wasn't good enough, and the majority didn't understand a word. They started to whisper and talk to each other which was understandable but it was rather sad  because she certainly had put a lot of effort to make this speech.

I hadn't prepared any speech, I also had no intention  to make one, but then suddenly I thought why not, after all he is only marrying once, so I also made a short speech, with my loudest voice, which worked rather well, as I am used to speak loud, being married to an Italian with an Opera voice.  Then the Marieken's wedding witnesses made a speech too this time in English, but also hardly understandable for the once staying behind. After that Dario's best friend talked and then Dario himself.

Then everybody was hungry and "attacked" the buffet !

They had hired a girl who entertained the children, there were certainly about 15 or more from 2 years to 12 ! All speaking different languages, French, Dutch, and English, but no problem with communication !

and here we are the proud parents with the freshly married couple !

My son's godmother had come with us and above you see the gift box. The Swiss friend had brought an enormous bottle of sparkling wine, with a label with their names ! Very special !

The evening began

and the couple opened the dancing part of the wedding. Even Mr. G. gathered his old bones and we danced too ! But only once with me. After that I continued to dance, with the result that my legs still hurt a little today ! His friend from preschool (they were both 3) mixed the music and did the disc jokey. Little Ollie, who had sat on the registrar's lap slept peacefully besides him despite the loud music, she probably was tired having married a young couple !

We left around 11 pm quiet tired and returned to our Bed and Breakfast, while the young people celebrated until 1 am and some of them even in another place until 3 am ! I know that because at that time somebody had sneaked into our room, looking for his wife ! Of  course they looked a little withered when they showed up for the brunch the next morning !

When I got up I was already expected by Dookie the dog who wanted to play. It was a wonderful sunny morning and we had the whole Bed & Breakfast for us.

The kids were playing and jumping around and at 11 am the young couple arrived for the brunch. Toby wanted to share his croissant with the dog, but Dookie misunderstood and ate it all !

Unfortunately I forgot to take a picture when we were all around the table. It was such a huge room and there was also a big kitchen. We had such a lot of fun and childhood memories were shared.

I can only say it was the perfect marriage !