Saturday, February 6, 2016

Editor's letter #2: What Is Love?

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It's this time of the year again, where everything has transformed overnight into a profusion of pink-and-red hearts, flowers, and chocolate. Valentine's Day is approaching, and although many of us chose not to celebrate this holiday, it does make us reflect on this thing called Love.

To me, love is my raison d'être. I think it's the reason we come to the world, and once we have found it, we are ready finally complete enough to leave this world in peace.

This sentimental pearl of wisdom set aside, I cannot deny I've had a very complicated love life, a lot of which was documented on this blog. From a very bad break-up, to falling in love again with another, but still, for many reasons, not being with the woman in question, to lots and lots of drama, I find myself today, a little over a week from Valentine's Day, single, but strangely enough at peace with myself*.

So I've decided to ask all of my friends what is their personal definition of love. Seeing how they're all from very different ages and backgrounds, their very diverse answers are just truly beautiful:
*sniff sniff*

Eliz, singer: 
Love is when you know that you can count on somebody, that the person will be there for you. Someone who doesn't give you any time is someone who doesn't love you.

Patricia, retired:
A tall question. I still have no clue. Perhaps Love is finding your partner exciting after 47 years of marriage, or simply finding beauty in everything and everyone around you.

Irène, classical singer : 
Respect, trust, friendship, empathy, loyalty and loads of passion. Honesty of course. Thats my love!

Laurence, blogger:
Love is the opening of the heart to encompass a feeling of acceptance of the other (or of the self) that makes us feel greater and worthy.

Arielle, teacher : 
Love is what I was obstinate about in a past ideal, this romanesque and romantic quest of the being that would come and fill my empty spaces. However recently I've realised that Love isn't outside of me, and that the love of another will simply come to bring more joy to my life, but not fill it. Today, love for me is the music that comes out of a simple heart and noiselessly fills silence, it's the whispering of the wind among the trees, the alchemy that links a human being to a work of art, the laughs that befall during a family meal where we've forgotten past animosity to give room to happiness, love is in everything, everywhere and at every instant. We want so much to give it a shape and lines, a name that matches our expectations, but when we look too much for a container to a marvelous force that cannot be contained, we risk passing by very beautiful moments... 

Chris, author :
Love is to not be able to live without the other. It's plenitude, serenity when we are together. It is to be able to share joys and sorrows... I love my parents, the man who is my husband for 50 years (I've known him when I was very young), my children and my grand-children... Love is to be happy near him just like when I was 15. 

And last, but not least, here's the ever-famous Kitty's answer (that's Kitty just being Kitty):

What about you, what is love for you ?


*Okay, there might be a teensy, teensy recent development...


Ça y est, on est à nouveau à cette période de l'année où tout s'est transformé du jour au lendemain en une profusion de coeurs, fleurs et chocolats rouges et roses. La Saint Valentin s'approche, et bien que plein d'entre nous choisissent de ne pas célébrer cette fête, elle nous fait quand même réfléchir à cette chose qu'on appelle l'Amour.

Personnellement, l'amour est ma raison d'être. C'est à mon avis la raison pour laquelle ont vient au monde, et quand on l'a trouvé, on est finalement assez complet pour partir de ce monde en paix.

Cette perle sentimentale mise à part, je ne peux pas vous cacher que j'ai eu une vie amoureuse très compliquée, d'ailleurs j'en ai souvent parlé sur ce blog. Sortie d'une rupture très difficile, je suis tombée amoureuse d'une autre, mais je ne suis pas, pour plein de raison, en couple avec cette femme, et il y a eu beaucoup, beaucoup de drames. Mais aujourd'hui, à une semaine plus ou moins de la Saint Valentin, je me retrouve célibataire mais étrangement en paix avec moi-même*.

Alors j'ai demandé à tous mes amis quelle est leur définition personnelle de l'amour. Ils sont tous d'âges et de milieux très différents, leurs réponses sont donc très diverses mais vraiment, vraiment belles : *sniff sniff*

Eliz, chanteuse : 
L'amour c'est lorsque tu sais que tu peux compter sur quelqu'un, que la personne sera à ton écoute et là pour toi. Quelqu'un qui ne te donne pas de son temps c'est quelqu'un qui ne t'aime pas.

Patricia, retraitée :
Bonne question. Je n'en ai toujours pas la moindre idée. Peut-être que l'amour, c'est de trouver son partenaire intéressant après 47 ans de mariage, ou tout simplement de trouver de la beauté dans tout et tout le monde autour de nous. 

Irène, cantatrice :
Le respect, la confiance, l'amour, la sympathie, la loyauté et plein de passion. L'honnêteté, bien sûr. Voici l'amour pour moi !

Laurence, blogueuse :
L'amour, c'est l'ouverture du coeur à un sentiment d'acceptance de l'autre (ou de soi) qui fait qu'on se sent mieux et qu'on a de la valeur. 

Arielle, enseignante :
L'amour c'est ce que je bornais dans un idéal passé, à cette quête romanesque et romantique de l'être qui viendrait combler mes espaces vides. Seulement depuis quelques temps, j'ai pris conscience que l'Amour n'est pas en dehors de moi et que l'amour d'un autre être viendra simplement apporter plus de joie à ma vie, pas la remplir. Aujourd'hui, pour moi, l'Amour c'est la musique qui émane d'un coeur simple et qui sans bruits comble le silence, c'est le chuchotement du vent entre les arbres, l'alchimie qui lie un humain à une œuvre d'Art, les rires qui retombent lors d'un repas de famille où l'on a oublié nos anciennes rancœurs pour laisser place au bonheur, l'Amour est dans tout, partout et à chaque instant. On voudrait tant lui donner une forme et des contours, un prénom qui corresponde à nos attentes, mais à trop chercher un contenant pour une force merveilleuse qui ne peut être contenue, on prend le risque de passer à côté de très beaux moments...

Chris, auteur :
L'amour c'est ne pas pouvoir vivre sans l'autre. C'est la plénitude, la sérénité lorsqu'on est ensemble. C'est pouvoir partager les joies et les peines... J'aime mes parents, l'homme qui est mon mari depuis 50 ans (je l'ai connu très jeune ) mes enfants et mes petits-enfants ... L'amour c'est d'être heureuse près de lui comme lorsque j'avais 15 ans. 

Et finalement, voici la réponse du fameux Kitty (sacré Kitty, va...) : 

Et vous, c'est quoi l'amour pour vous ?


*Ok, il se peut qu'il y ait un minuscule, miiiiinuscule développement touuut récent... 


Friday, February 5, 2016

At Sala Thai

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A lot of newcomers in DC ask me what are my favourite restaurants. It's true that it's sometimes rather hard to find places that take to heart quality and especially authenticity, and it does take a lot of time to find those pearls. So I've decided to tell you about my favourite places in DC, and today I'd like to tell you about my favourite thai restaurant, Sala Thai.

Thursday, February 4, 2016

Tarot Tips!

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I've mentioned my love for Tarot so many times on this blog already, that I think it's the right time to dedicate a whole article to this amazing tool. Although it's been only about a year that I've been using Tarot regularly, it has helped me, among others, understand and make it through a lot of tough situations. The great thing about tarot is that it can be a guide for everybody, and you don't need to believe in anything for it to be useful to you. So today I will be giving you a few tips that I've learned from my own experience reading Tarot. I hope they will help those of you who are beginners and will encourage a lot of you to get your own deck and see what the cards have to say!

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

The Chop!

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It might sound odd to you, but I've always been hypersensitive to the idea of hair cutting. The noise the scissors make, the strands that fall to the floor, make me nervous, it does to my stomach the equivalent of a big plunge in space. I rather prefer by far the gorish scenes (meaning just a teeny bit of blood in a shot that only lasts a split second, nothing more!) in film and TV than scenes where a character (especially feminine) gets their hair cut or their head shaven (so absolutely no Natalie Portmann in V for Vendetta). Just thinking about trimming my ends makes me extremely nervous.

So the instances where I decided to get my hair cut short

Tuesday, February 2, 2016


Many of you have been reading this blog long enough to know about my very long struggle with acne and the not-less-than-miraculous way my skin finally cleared up.

But, for newcomers, here are a few hints: it is much less about using all the acne-clearing products in the skincare aisle and suffering through Accutane, and much more about
1) living a healthy lifestyle, which includes eating whole, unprocessed, and preferably organic foods, drinking tea and red wine, and getting proper sleep,
2) eliminating as much stress as possible and find efficient ways to cope with what remains (because sometimes you can't avoid stress completely)(mine, so far, include sleeping properly, taking bubble baths, listening to relaxing sounds, and doing things I love,)
3) MOST IMPORTANT: being careful not to be aggressive with your skin. That means finding a care routine that doesn't cause it to become irritated and produce more oil. For me, it includes not constantly washing it with tap water, using cold cream to cleanse it, and definitely not running away from skin treatment oils.

I've already told you that I use coconut oil as a moisturizer. I do use other products every once in a while, but my most basic one is coconut oil, and it really does miracles when my skin is dry and irritated, especially during the winter we're having now. And lavender essential oil makes an amazing treatment against the !*#&!) blemishes that appear around my period.

However sometimes my skin gets a little too dry and flaky, and this is when I need a treatment that exfoliates it well enough so it can fully receive the coconut oil's benefits, but without irritating it and making it worse.

I did struggle to find any decent product to do the job, and I would have never thought that my ultra-sensitive skin would be a good candidate for a chemical peel. The very idea of it was rather hilarious, until Exuviance very kindly sent me one of their Firm-NG6 Non-Acid Peel.
The first time I tried it, I was prepared to cancel all my plans for the next two days, in case I would have a horrendous reaction to it and look like I was on the brink of death. I had a washcloth ready in case it began to itch or burn horribly, and I applied a thin layer of it, I was shaking with apprehension.

And to my great surprise, it was one of the gentlest exfoliating products I had ever used. I waited a few minutes and followed with coconut oil, and, seeing no horrendous reaction, I began doing this routine every day. And now, after many weeks of using the Firm-NG6 Non-Acid Peel, I can truly say that it helped my skin look clearer, brighter, smoother, and that, even around my period. I do feel that it makes my skin more receptive to the natural treatments I do (including this honey-avocado mask), and creates a better base for make-up application.

I am happy to say that the Firm-NG6 Non-Acid Peel is now a permanent part of my skincare routine, and it will remain so for a very long time. I absolutely recommend it to all of you, so please visit the Exuviance website to read a full description of this wonderful product, view directions as to how to use it, and purchase it if you'd like to give it a try!


This post was sponsored as a part of a collaboration with Exuviance. 
Please visit this page for more info about sponsorship on French Girl In DC