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Birthday Season

Two weekends ago, as I mentioned before, S and I drove to my bro- and sis-in-law's for a visit and to celebrate my m-i-l's birthday.  I made her a succulent wreath and Gramercy Tavern's Gingerbread Cake. (I love this cake.  Love, love, love it with extra ginger. Sadly, it isn't J's favorite.) This past weekend, we took S to Spain as planned, and we had a great time. I think she did, too.

One year old, but still a little too young to understand how to open presents

La Concha Bay in the background, family in fore: Tonton (uncle) Mat, Manou (grandma), and Papa with Sprout and Rosalie the Cow.

At the aquarium, in the tunnel:

In front of Basílica de Santa María del Coro:

Eating her first birthday cake on the lawn of Miramar Palace:

The cake she found so-so, but the pear we gave her afterwards met with her whole and fulsome approval:

The beret met with less approval. She is not a hat baby, more's the pity.

And a final frolic on the beach before heading home because Beaches = Happy Baby:

The weather was really on our side.  With people swimming and sunbathing, it was hard to believe November is only a week away.

Then, Monday, it was J's birthday, and we headed south again, this time stopping in Basque Country* on the French side of the border.  The weather was wet and blustery, though, so we didn't spend time outdoors, exploring, as I had planned.  Instead, we ate lunch in Espelette, where eponymous chilis festoon white, white houses with pepper-red or Basque-green shutters. We then visited Edmond Rostand's mansion, now-museum, where his works, notably Cyrano de Bergerac, and life are featured.  Photography is not allowed indoors, but you can visit the site here to see a little of the interior. 

* This being the area of France J would like to settle in on that distant day when we shall decide to put down roots.


( 15 comments — Leave a comment )
Oct. 25th, 2011 09:08 pm (UTC)
Looks like a pair of terrific birthdays! Oh! And you should really try to get the cow on all her birthday photos in the future, that would be awesome cool. :D
Oct. 25th, 2011 09:21 pm (UTC)
Yes, Rosalie (the Cow) is becoming a fixture. I hope she is a solid old gal and will be with S for many years to come. :D
Oct. 25th, 2011 09:31 pm (UTC)
I keep forgetting to comment on the cow! I love the subversive nature of a cow as a riding toy.
Oct. 26th, 2011 07:14 am (UTC)
hehe. I keep telling Soëlie she is a true "cow" girl. :P
Oct. 25th, 2011 09:29 pm (UTC)
Basque Country* on the French side of the border

Roots are good. (Carrots, potatoes, Queen Anne's Lace....) Are the French Basque as insular as I have heard of the Basque in Spain, or is that Spanish situation a mis-creation of the Spanish gov't?
Oct. 26th, 2011 07:17 am (UTC)
Roots are indeed good. :D

The French Basque are known for their strong personalities and their fierce grip on their heritage. Some people will tell you that they are chauvinist and insular; however, as in all cases where people try to apply stereotypes wholesale, I believe it is a matter of who you meet, what your expectations are, etc.

Most of the ETA stuff happens, I believe, on the Spanish side. We hear less about the group these days.
Oct. 26th, 2011 09:38 am (UTC)
Good! No one needs terrorists living down the street.
Oct. 26th, 2011 10:27 am (UTC)
That they don't!
Oct. 25th, 2011 09:57 pm (UTC)
Happy birthdays all around!
Oct. 26th, 2011 07:13 am (UTC)
I'll pass along the good wishes on your behalf. :)
Oct. 26th, 2011 04:36 pm (UTC)
To your lovely self as well, belatedly.
Oct. 30th, 2011 05:50 pm (UTC)
All of your photos of Soëlie are magical, but the one of her in the tunnel at the aquarium is especially so.

Yes, I am catching up with your journal again ;-) I am late with my birthday greetings again, but they are heartfelt nonetheless: A belated Happy Birthday to you, young Sprout!

*Edited to change sigpic!

Edited at 2011-10-30 05:51 pm (UTC)
Oct. 30th, 2011 08:09 pm (UTC)
(that is the perfect sigpic!)

Glad to have you back around. I only wish you'd stay this time. ;)

How've you been?

Going to give Ni90 a whirl with me in two days? *bats eyelashes winningly*
Oct. 30th, 2011 08:22 pm (UTC)
Be careful what you wish for!

I have every intention of staying this time :) I'm working up to a blog post about it, but the words are being a bit coy.

Funnily enough, I did wonder whether it was a coincidence or fate - you know, that I've chosen to return now. Just as a new round of Ni90 involving so many people I recognise from my first attempt is about to begin.

I've thought about it for most of this evening, actually.

I've decided that it's just a coincidence ;-)
Oct. 31st, 2011 05:14 pm (UTC)
I'm always careful with my wishes. One never knows when a fairy--good or otherwise--is lurking about, ready to fulfill them. :D

Coincidences are good. Just not in fiction, apparently. ;-)
( 15 comments — Leave a comment )


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