Wednesday, October 1, 2014

I've got Paris on my mind...and it is a lovely distraction.

Since hearing the news that I am one of the lucky ladies to accompany Jamie Cat Callan on her Paris Ooh La La Tour this coming May I have let my thoughts stray to all things Parisienne...
By the way, I think there are a couple of spots left on Jamie's Tour if you want to come along, but act fast if you want to join in!

I have been looking online at Paris blogs and websites and many kind readers have emailed me behind the scenes offering their thoughts on what to pack and what brand of carry on they prefer and several of my readers who live in Paris have suggested we meet for a drink while I am there...
more about Paris later in the post.

We recently went to a Scottish Celebration...
my husband's ancestors hail from Scotland...
The Campbell's and the MacDonald's.
Two clans that were constantly warring with each other!

Have you ever attended a Ceilidh?
Do you know what it is?
I had to look at this sign to spell it correctly as it is pronounced "Kay Lee."

An online source describes a Ceilidh ~
"a social event at which there is Scottish or Irish folk music and singing, traditional dancing and storytelling."

It was a fun evening filled with entertainment and a plethora of tartan kilted regimental musicians.
We were happy to be invited as it was a fund raising event for the local band's upcoming tour to Europe.

Isn't this a beautiful pin?
I love the acorn and the oak leaf.

I do love to see a man in a kilt and kitted out smartly to play in the band with those bagpipes and drums...
My Irish background can appreciate those who hail from the Highlands, after all we were practically neighbours! 

I made a Freekeh grain salad last week and it was delicious.
How does one pronounce Freekeh?
I have been saying Freak Ah!

I used the recipe on the back of the box.
Spinach, roasted red peppers, Greek olives, feta cheese, and I added some red onions.
It called for a dressing of lemon juice with a pinch of nutmeg and a bit of cinnamon but it really tasted delicious without it.
It made a large bowl full and I served it to Mother and my sister at our weekly dinner.
The verdict was that it was a keeper.
There was some leftover so it made for easy lunches for me for the next few days.

I made our favourite prawn bisque.
The recipe is in the Whitewater Cooks  cookbook as shrimp bisque but I use prawns for more flavour.
I posted about this shrimp bisque way back in the day...

This recipe has big flavours and is loaded in WW points so make sure that you proceed with caution!

The roses in The Humble Bungalow Garden are laden with rose hips... 
perhaps a sign of a harsh winter to come?

The cushions have been removed from the front porch chairs as the colder wet weather is almost upon us...
the pockets of sunshine continue teasing us into believing that summer is still here.

Stews will be back on the menu as the temperatures dip.

I'm thinking about what I will pack when I go to Paris!
I always love reading posts on packing by un femme d'un certain age.

I've been reading quite a bit...

New Year New Dreams blog author Madame La Bas suggested these mysteries set in Paris.
The stories are well written, engaging, and I am enjoying reading about the different areas of Paris.

So much is happening here in and around The Humble Bungalow.
We are living in busy times.
I really must run and get some things done.
Thank you for visiting!

I am planning a wardrobe post please come back soon.


  1. Oh, I'm so excited for you, Hostess! What fun months of planning you have to look forward to. We attended a Ceilidh when we were in Oban, Scotland in 2013 and it was a blast. Most of the people attending were college-age kids and they seemed to be having a great time.

  2. I can tell you are excited about this trip!

    Your beef stew looks yummy. It is one of my very favorite cold weather meals.

  3. I'm excited about your trip to Paris. It's such a beautiful city.
    I've wondered about Freekeh but have never tried it. It does look yummy. My DIL is from the MacDonald clan - they were a prolific bunch!

  4. Excited for you, Leslie. I'll make it to Southern France one day soon ;) BTW...where did you get that Freekeh?? It sounds yummy!!
    Love your cat in the bag, too :)

    1. I bought the Freekeh at Thrifty's in Fairfield...I am sure that you could find it at any grocery store.

  5. I really must try the Freekeh. Those Aimée Leduc mysteries capture the feel of each neighbourhood. I was looking at Jamie Cat's tour blogs and you will have a wonderful time, I'm sure. Rick Steves' Paris is a really helpful guidebook if you have some free time in Paris. One thing that he suggests that is really interesting is riding the public bus that goes from Champs de Mars all the way to Père Lachaise cemetery. I've never been to a Ceilidh but it sounds like fun. I am going to start watching the Ann Cleves Shetland mystery series that is starting on Knowledge Network next week as I am descended from Islanders (more Norse than Scot) This is the time for stews and soups. I bought a lot of vegetables yesterday to make the soup you wrote about in an earlier post. Paris dreaming is so much fun, isn't it?

    1. I have te Rich Steves' book too and read that same tip about that bus route....thank you for suggesting the Cara Black books!

  6. What a wonderful adventure you have to look forward to...there is no place else like Paris! My Grandfather came from Scotland and I was fortunate to be able to visit his childhood home, it was quite a treat as was attending the Tattoo at Edinburgh Castle...when all of the bagpipers appear out of the mist it's magical. Now I must check and see if my library has Cara Black's books, they look fun.

  7. Your trip sounds like it will be fantastic. I love the Cara Black mysteries! That stew looks you have a favorite recipe?

  8. Oh, lucky you on your Paris trip.
    You reminded me of England with the rose hips and the stew, I make stew here in the winter but I do miss the rose hips at this time of the year.
    I don't think that I have ever seen a rose hip here in Greece.
    Surely there must be some somewhere!

  9. Re Paris, very comfortable walking shoes - you will need them every single day, for most of each day. I don't think I have ever walked so far in my life as in the 10 days I spent in Paris! You will love it !