I promised you several articles on the Louvre Museum, so here is the 2nd opus.
Passionate about art, the Louvre Museum is an incredible place to satisfy my curiosity as its treasures are countless.
We’ve just celebrated Bastille Day in France, and for the occasion I wanted to honour French painting.
And to start, I chose " La Liberté guidant le people " (Liberty leading the people) by Eugène Delacroix.
Although this painting refers to the riots of July 1830 which led to the abdication of Charles X, and not to the French Revolution & the Storming of the Bastille, that we celebrate every July 14, this painting remains an important symbol of the French Republic.
We see the tricolour flag as well as Liberty wearing the Phrygian cap.
Delacroix is one of my favourite painters and this incredible artwork (260 x 325cm) is exhibited at the Louvre Museum in Paris among other of his masterpieces ...
I’m planning an article which will be entirely dedicated to him, so much there is to say about this extraordinary artist.
Another painting that attracts many visitors: The Raft of the Medusa by Théodore Géricault.
Another French romantic painter, this spectacular work from 1819 (491 x 716cm) also tells a historical event: the wreck of the frigate Méduse of the French colonial navy.
She stranded in 1816 off the coast of Mauritania on her way to Senegal to transport equipment and personnel. On a makeshift raft, 147 people tried to survive for several days, cannibalism included. Only 10 people ultimately escaped death.
The painter has researched extensively and even met survivors to create this disturbing and magnificent work that cemented his reputation.
Still in the historical context, a once again very famous painting: The Coronation of Napoleon.
Painting from 1807 by Jacques-Louis David, one cannot miss this neoclassical work of 621 × 969 cm!
Obviously representing the coronation of Napoleon I and Empress Joséphine in Notre-Dame Cathedral in Paris in 1804 and not at Reims Cathedral like the previous Kings of France.
No less than 191 people are faithfully reproduced in this artwork.
The artist realised an almost identical second painting, which is now on display at the Palace of Versailles.
Jacques-Louis David, a very influential painter, has been the master of two generations of artists.
I’d like to conlude with Jean-Auguste Dominique Ingres and another important event in French history: Joan of Arc at the coronation of King Charles VII, in the Cathedral of Reims (1429).
Ingres, disciple of Jacques-Louis David of course!
I’ve previously talked about Reims and its history:
I hope that with this article you discovered or rediscovered some gems of French painting.
For those who wanted to see the Mona Lisa, I invite you to reread my Article Louvre Museum.
No article next week I’ll be settling in Paris for the summer! Which presages many new adventures and exhibitions to tell you.
But you can still re-read all the articles about my Solo Wedding in Santorini: LINK.
Obviously, I’ll stay active on my social media:
Next article: July 31, 2021!
Love & Joy,
If you follow me on my social media you know I celebrated my birthday with style, and even royally!
This is always a celebration that I particularly honour, and since my Solo Wedding in Santorini I must say that I've certainly followed this rule (re-read Time Travel).
And after Santorini, London and Paris, I was planning to celebrate it in Milan, however with the current situation, I preferred to stay in France and do it with my family in the Alps where I grew up.
However, being born in July, a summer baby, I chose an aquatic atmosphere ...
After the cancellation of Milan, the mermaid theme immediately came to my mind, yet I'm not a particular fan, you know I love Unicorns (read my article Unicorns).
And in Disney's Little Mermaid, I much prefer Ursula, the wicked octopus.
I admit I like the vilains a lot: Cruella (101 Dalmatians), Maleficent, the Evil Queen (Snow White).
My shrink would definitely have something to say about it if I had one.
In short, while this decoration is normally easy to find in specialised stores, it turns out that the main suppliers for this theme are American and weren’t able to supply the shops with the Covid ... So, I had to be creative to satisfy my marine desires.
Siren comes from ancient Greek, and in Greek mythology this is a half-woman, half-bird creature (hence my wings at the beginning of the article), while in the Scandinavian culture she’s half fish (as in The Little Mermaid, the tale of Hans Christian Andersen).
While it’s true that on ancient Greek pottery they’re clearly distinguished as birds, in my recollections in Homer's Odyssey they are described as naked women by the water ...
In French, the same word is used “sirène”, while in English, "siren" is used for Greek sirens, and "mermaid" for others.
In both cases, they’re associated with the sea, and the myths, tales and stories about them are still fascinating.
I decided not to discriminate anyone, I’m the Queen of all, sirens & mermaids 😊
I love organising events and decorating is my thing. So, I was able to please my heart & the result reached my expectations:
"Details make perfection, and perfection is not a detail."
For those who know me, well you never get bored with me ...
Then, polaroid photoshoot with accessories, nothing better to relax and have some good laughs.
The guestbook required a little effort from my guests, they had to paint a picture of their choice and add a note.
And the Under the Ocean Game, blindfolded, we had to stick a unicorn in the place chosen by the other participants (back of the turtle, fish, seabed…). Everyone loved it, young and old alike! And my mum won!!
Ocean Water to rehydrate and Seaweed Juice to refresh (love the colourings!).
(Fake) crabs, octopus, stars and real Greek dishes (Greek salad, pita, spanakopita) to remind us of Ulysses and the Odyssey.
Obviously, the cake, well the cakes ...
My pastry chef, my sister!
Mermaid tail, bikini and rubber ring, everything you need for a mermaid at the beach despite a rainy day ...
I had never had a themed birthday party like this before, there is no age for having fun ...
Thank you to my family and friends for a wonderful birthday party, yet another unforgettable year, looking forward to what next year has in store for me!!
My previous articles:
And I’d like to end this article with the caption I posted on my social media on my birthday:
Happy Birthday to me!!
Have a fantastic week!
Love & Joy,
PS: Luca is a wonderful movie ;)
Today, there’s the LGBTQIA+ pride in Paris, as a fervent ally of this community I wanted to honour them this week!
Long called gay pride, today we only say pride, to bring together everyone and no longer just homosexuals.
And for those unfamiliar with the term LGBTQIA+, it means: lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, intersex, asexual and more, as the acronym can have even more categories, in its full form:
One of the A's stands for Ally, like me, for all those who support equal rights.
But if you only remember the first one, that's great!
(The photos in this article were taken in Paris in June 2019)
While many cities around the world have already celebrated it, more will take place in the summer, an event always eagerly awaited and even more so this year as many were cancelled last year.
The first march took place in June 1970 in the United States, to commemorate the Stonewall riots in New York.
Indeed, on June 28, 1969, a police raid took place at the Stonewall Inn in Greenwich Village (NYC). A bar frequented by gay and transgender people. Recall that at that time in New York, it was forbidden to serve alcohol to homosexuals, as well as to cross-dress.
Only this time, the police face a rebellion. Five days of riots followed. 2,000 participants and 400 policemen were reported during the first night.
This event undoubtedly gave birth to the LGBT movement in the United States and around the world.
This is why June is considered Pride Month in many countries, and every year since 1970 more and more cities around the world have joined the movement.
You probably noticed this month, small multicoloured flags on the internet, social media, some store windows ...
This is the flag of the LGBTQIA + community.
It was created by an American, Gilbert Baker in 1978. The first 2 flags were hand-stitched & dyed by the artist and used in the march of San Francisco on June 25, 1978.
Each colour represents a particular word:
Originally the flag had 8 stripes, the pink (sex) and turquoise (magic) have been removed to facilitate mass-production.
However, the colour brown (inclusivity) and black (diversity) were added in 2017 for more inclusion towards people of colour.
The video below tells the story of this flag very well:
In my article Superwomen 3, I talked extensively about same-sex marriage around the world, as well as the right to parenthood, and all the inequalities that still exist.
I recalled in my article Superwomen 5 that lesbians in France are not allowed to freeze their eggs or to have IVF (in-vitro fertilization).
In recent weeks, there has been a lot of talk about donating blood, because in most countries in the world, homosexuals and bisexuals are not allowed to donate blood or under certain conditions such as several months of abstinence before blood donation. (Australia, United States, France…).
The UK made a change to their law about ten days ago, allowing people in a monogamous relationship for more than 3 months to donate blood without restriction.
France is expected to allow anyone over the age of 18 to be an unrestricted donor next year.
Still too many laws are unequal and inadequate today, it is up to everyone to support equal rights for all.
Today is also the birthday of my godchildren, Hannah and Noam, the twins of 2 amazing dads!
I witnessed the difficult journey for them to become a family, the laws, the disappointments, the failures and finally these 2 miracles.
Love has no gender, colour, religion, border. Love is Love.
So today, I'm not just celebrating their birth, but also determination, courage and love ...
I am proud of you, I love you!!
Reread my articles from the Superwomen Series here: LINK.
But also, all the articles of My Solo Wedding in Santorini: LINK.
No article next week, it's my birthday on the 1st of July!! I'm going to celebrate for a few days...
Next Post: Saturday July 10
Love & Joy,
I’m very excited because I’m going to spend Summer in Paris again. I love this city, so romantic and inspiring, it's no wonder that many artists and authors created here.
So this week, I'm taking you again to the French capital, to visit my favourite garden: the Luxembourg Gardens.
Created in 1612 for Queen Marie de Medici, to enhance the Luxembourg Palace that she chose as her residence, this palace occupied by the Germans during the Second World War, is today the place of the Senate, which owns it, gardens included.
It was transformed several times over time, in its current form there’s a French garden, an English garden, separated by a geometric forest, but also a rose garden, greenhouses with orchids, an orchard with old apples and even beehives.
Everything is conducive to daydreaming in these 25 hectares of greenery and art / architecture.
What I love most is its collection of 106 statues spread all over the park, like witnesses of time and history.
Among these the Greek actor, a bronze sculpture of a man with a mask on his forehead and a manuscript in his hand, you know how attached I am to Greece, my country of heart since My Solo Weddding in Santorini.
And yes, this is the Pantheon in the background (read Article Pantheon Paris).
Or even the bronze model that was used by the sculptor Bartholdi for the Statue of Liberty (statue mentioned in my article Spring in New York). He actually gave it to the Luxembourg Gardens.
Many activities are available in these gardens, tennis, bowls, ponies for children, exhibitions etc.
But my favourite thing is to relax, sunbath, wander, have a coffee, watch the clouds as I said last week (reread Superwomen 5), and of course to write ...
Without forgetting what makes all the charm of this magnificent place, the large pond where children play with small sailboats.
So restful and calming.
Spending time here, you’d almost believe you're at home like a Queen ...
My previous Articles about Paris:
Have a fantastic week everyone!
Love & Joy,
Since last week I spoke again about my egg freezing in Madrid, I thought an update on this very personal topic was a good idea.
As a reminder, I received this Gift from Science one year after my Solo Wedding in Santorini.
And for this article, I’ve chosen to use my photos of clouds, all the photos are mine, like for my article Meditation.
The sky is a great source of artistic inspiration and to me it represents hope.
Hope I wish to radiate and spread in this patriarchal world ...
First of all, I’d like to point out that in June 2021, France is still one of the 3 countries in Europe (Austria and Malta) that don’t allow egg freezing for singles and lesbians!
In 2019, a law was passed to allow all women to use this procedure, unfortunately this law was rejected by the Senate recently, and right now we have absolutely no idea when it’ll be possible one day ...
As we celebrate Pride Month for the LGBTQ + community of which I’m an unconditional ally, it seemed important to me to recall this system anomaly.
At the present time it seems unthinkable that single women and lesbian women can’t freeze their oocytes and use IVF!
However, women who rebel, like Teresa Xu, a 31-year-old single woman who went to Chinese court in 2019 - another country that bans freezing for single women - to demand equal rights.
Unfortunately, again, no hope was obtained. An injustice even more outrageous since Chinese men can freeze their sperm, which is not the case in France, no gender discrimination on that side (good or bad, the debate is open!).
After 40 years of IVF (in-vitro fertilization) and 30 years of freezing technique, we’re moving too slowly.
And more and more women who travel to foreign countries (myself included) to have this type of procedure, which is sadly reminiscent of the case of abortion.
Not to mention that the cost of treatment and travel is not accessible to everyone.
Incredible women who never stop fighting for our happiness, Australian Dr. Debra Gook opened the world's first egg bank in 1994 at the Royal Women’s Hospital in Melbourne (Australia). After 5 years of intense research, she’s the one who discovered the technique of freezing oocytes.
Despite this great advance, the medical world was reluctant, yet the practice of freezing sperm dates from the 1970s ...
Then another woman, Dr. Eleonora Porcu, Italian, decided to follow in her footsteps, followed by Dr. Nicole Noyes in the United States.
Thank you to all these women, and the men who support them, who support us, for making a difference and offering future generations the freedom to choose!
Reread my previous articles:
And I’d like to highlight my Superwomen series:
Keep your head in the clouds, the only place you see the sun, stars, and rainbows!
Love & Joy,
While I’ve just renewed my vows and celebrated the 4th Anniversary of my Solo Wedding in Santorini (read the Article again), here I am celebrating another anniversary, just as unique and special: the freezing of my eggs 3 years ago!!
I’ve explained extensively why and how it all happened in my Article ‘Gift from Science’, I invite you to re-read it:
And for those who follow me for a long time, you know that I made this wish come true in the magnificent Spanish capital: Madrid.
That’s the reason why I’ve chosen to show you more this city that I adore, and where I lived for several months for the success of my cryopreservation.
If there's one place I've spent a lot of time, it's the Retiro Park, located in the heart of Madrid and very popular with locals, especially on sunny days.
First with its large rectangular ornemental lake adorned with an imposing bronze equestrian statue from 1904, the place is romantic and relaxing for a rowboat ride.
Or the many gardens, perennials, French flowerbeds or the rose garden that I told you all about in my article: Rainy Day in Madrid.
In the first heat, taking refuge under the 15,000 trees in the park is a real breath of fresh air. Moreover, built between 1630 and 1640, it was for a long time the royal secondary residence.
Today there are 2 palaces, the Crystal Palace built for the colonial exhibition of 1887 and the Velazquez Palace, both rich in know-how and architecture that serve as an exhibition hall.
And with the many fountains and statues present in this park, it’s a really pleasant and peaceful place.
Another area where I walked daily, the Royal Palace.
In its surroundings, you’ll obviously find the Almudena Cathedral, to which I devoted an entire article, many gardens including the Plaza de Oriente located between the Palace and the Royal Theatre.
Old or modern buildings, strolling through Madrid is always fascinating and you sometimes come across architectural surprises such as the Temple of Amun.
Temple built in Debod in Egypt and dating from the 2nd century. It was donated by Egypt to Spain in 1960, as part of the safeguard of the monuments, which were to be flooded by the waters of the Aswan dam.
Another very famous place, the Plaza Mayor, which is always crowded.
From 1590 to 1854, it changed and transformed many times to finally retain the style that we know today, with an equestrian statue of Philip III dating from the 17th century.
This square measures 423ft (129m) by 308ft (94m) and is pedestrian only, which is in fact a privileged place for meetings, it’s also surrounded by many restaurants.
Strolling the surrounding streets immerses you in the historic atmosphere of this vibrant capital!
And at the end of the day, nothing better than going for a few tapas at the San Miguel Market.
In these sumptuous covered market from 1916, a heritage of Spanish know-how for iron architecture (like the Crystal Palace), you can taste all kinds of specialties and delicate meals prepared by the greatest Spanish chefs, but also international and Michelin-starred chefs.
For more than a decade, this space has been considered the first gastronomic market in Madrid.
No wonder then to find caviar as much as traditional paella ...
Bon appétit !
This city with its many famous museums is exciting for lovers of history and art. I’ve already introduced several of them with some very fascinating exhibitions:
I hope you enjoyed this walk as much as I enjoyed sharing my memories with you ...
Have an amazing week everyone!
Love & Joy,
One more year has passed, I just celebrated my 4th wedding anniversary!
You know I always prepare a special post for the occasion, but this time I did so much more, I felt the need to renew my vows, and I wanted to share this magical moment with you today.
Obviously, I couldn't celebrate an event like this without being perfectly myself, which means, designer dress, makeup and accessories!
And as a nod, I chose to wear the nail polish, lipstick, earrings and shoes from my Solo Wedding in Santorini...(Check again my previous articles Shoes Forever & Solo Wedding-Behind the Scenes).
Shoes: Louboutin - Dress: Anne Fontaine - Bone Cuff: Elsa Peretti for Tiffany - Bracelet: Adolfo Dominguez - Earrings: Cassandra Lynn Bridal - Crown: Forever New - Beauty: Chanel, Dior, M.A.C.
“Love yourself to change the world. " L.
I loved this moment alone to take some time for myself and prepare.
However, I was nervous, I had decided this time to share this intimate experience of my life, I was going to take my vows on the Internet…
If you follow me on my social media,
you must have seen my video, to watch or watch again so:
It's funny, I still remember every detail of my wedding, the memories are still so fresh, yet I had forgotten how empowering it was to take my vows, so full of meaning and transformation.
I feel rejuvenated, revived, and even more protected and guided by the Universe.
Once again, I have just filled my heart and soul with love, peace and joy, convinced that the best is yet to come ...
Very sensitive in nature, I couldn't help but shed a few tears right after.
And after so much emotion, I obviously needed a little comfort.
No churros to celebrate my birthday this year, but I made myself a chocolate cake for the occasion!
I also received some pretty flowers from my family, and since in France, 4 years it’s the Wax Anniversary, I lit a beautiful candle as a sign of new life ... (Apparently flowers in the US & silk in the UK).
When I put my ring on my finger 4 years ago, I said these words:
"This ring is the symbol of my rebirth, a promise that I will understand myself more in order to become a better person."
And what a rebirth ...
So many amazing things have happened in my life since:
I’m so thankful for my family, friends and all the people who have supported me since my Solo Wedding in Santorini.
I never would have believed such an adventure was possible.
Reread my Articles:
And all my wedding posts available here: LINK.
"Open your heart to open your mind!" L.
And at the end of this article, the song that accompanied me to the altar on May 27, 2017 ...
Have a wonderful week everyone!
Love & Joy,
While some are starting to reschedule trips, me for example! I thought that a summary of my articles on the subject would be welcome. Indeed, in 3 years, I’ve already shared many of my magnificent travels.
Maybe this gives you some ideas for your next vacation 😉
Obviously, I start with my country of heart, Greece, which witnessed my self-marriage, but also the birth of my book My Solo Wedding in Santorini:
Rainy day in Athens
For lovers of cities, museums and architecture:
The other country that is dear to me because I lived there for 7 wonderful years, Australia:
Christmas in Brisbane
North Stradbroke Island
In the Air 3 (Sydney)
And then the exotic destinations, you know how much I love the sea and the ocean:
Las Palmas (Canaries)
Other amazing places:
Without forgetting where I grew up, the French Alps: Childhood.
And at the end of the article, my last video: Go with the Flow.
Where I explain that I lived in 7 different countries in the world and that none of them was part of a plan ...
Because that's how I see my life, seize the moment, live the moment and let the universe guide me to discover all the beauty and magic of our beautiful planet!
Don't forget to think of me on May 27, it’ll be the 4th anniversary of my solo wedding 😉
Have a wonderful week everyone!
Love & Joy,
Last time I took you to the far reaches of the Pacific Ocean, to Fiji.
On this Ascension long weekend, it seemed appropriate to show you another jewel of Christian architecture, and what is an unrecognised basilica and yet highly prestigious in many ways.
You know how much I love to share with you my interest in architecture, art, and history ...
The Basilica of Sainte Clotilde of Reims, bears the name of Queen Clotilde, Queen of the Franks and wife of King Clovis, whom she converted to Christianity.
Clovis, remember that is the name of the champagne at my Solo Wedding in Santorini (reread the article).
This magnificent basilica, in Greek cross shape, surmounted by a dome, was built between 1896 and 1905, by Alphonse Gosset, architect from Reims, with a national and even international reputation since he participated in competitions abroad (like one for New York).
Neo-Byzantine in style, he was inspired in particular by the model of Hagia Sophia Cathedral in Istanbul (Turkey) that I had the chance to visit.
This very fashionable style in the 19th century, also reached its peak with the construction of the incredible Basilica of the Sacred Heart of Paris.
Much more modest in size than St Remi Basilica or Reims Cathedral, and of course Almudena Cathedral in Madrid, it’s no less majestic from floor to ceiling.
Whether it’s the tiling with fleur-de-lys and doves, or the stained-glass windows depicting Joan of Arc and the baptism of Clovis.
Or the incredible ceiling under the dome which symbolises the celestial vault.
You will not remain indifferent ...
What I love most about this basilica is its baptistery.
Isolated next to the entrance, circular in shape and carefully decorated, it was used for baptism.
Moreover, the Basilica of St. Clotilde was originally erected to celebrate the 1,400 years of the baptism of Clovis, a baptism which took place at the Basilica of St Remi, remember my article.
But what makes all the richness of this basilica are the relics kept in its crypt!
It represents 1,600 Saints of France with 403 reliquaries and 2,100 relics.
Photos weren't allowed, but the video at the end of the article gives you a guided tour (but it's in French, anyway images speak for themselves).
My previous articles on Reims and its region:
Here again my video with the Cathedral of Reims in the background!
Have a luminous week everyone!
Love & Joy,
While checking my travel photos, I came across May 2014, during my trip to Fiji.
Incredible holidays, I lived in the Pacific Ocean for a long time, so it was easy for me to visit exotic archipelagos, only 4 hours by plane from Brisbane, Fiji is a popular destination for Australians.
For sure, from Europe or the US, it becomes more adventurous. That’s why this week I wanted to share its treasures with you.
This country located in the Pacific Ocean includes more than 300 islands of which only 100 are inhabited, representing a total population of 936,000 inhabitants.
Of course, when you think of Fiji, you visualise the white sand beaches and turquoise waters, and don't worry, you’ll be amazed!
Nothing better than a boat to fully enjoy, can you feel the sea air??
The coastline stretches over 1,129 km (701mi) for a country with an area of 18,333 km2 (7,078 sq. mi).
Although covered with tropical forests, the islands are also mountainous with the highest peak reaching an altitude of 1,324m.
But I also took the opportunity to visit the local market in Suva, the country's capital on the main island: Viti Levu.
It’s always very interesting to discover local products, you learn a lot about cultures.
And in Fiji, there's a very popular root, from a plant native to the Western Pacific called Kava, and related to the pepper tree.
When crushed into powder, it makes a preparation for infusion, keep that in mind because I’ll talk about it later in this article 😉
What I also love is visiting villages, it's very interactive, they are all different, you learn so much about customs and traditions, and I've even been to a pottery village.
You know how much I love this craft, reread Cretan Pottery.
Fiji has preserved its traditional art and cultural heritage, handicrafts such as pottery, cloth, wood carving, jewellery continue to be passed down in the villages from generation to generation.
Made from clay and sand, potteries often have a utilitarian use. Handcrafted, they dry in the sun before being heated over a fire containing coconut shells and bamboo.
If there’s one memory that marked me more than the others, it was the connection with the locals.
In the chapter Moral of my book My Solo Wedding in Santorini, I explained I liked participating in charitable projects.
I had the opportunity to make a donation for one of the villages on the island of Viti Levu, for the construction of a small infirmary. No significant amount, but to them it was a blessing.
Most of the inhabitants were working and were not present in the village at this time of the day, but the Chief asked the children - who were at school - to come to thank and honour me.
I spent several hours, sitting in the village hall, drinking kava, the famous drink mentioned above, very sour and spicy, with an earthy taste and with anaesthetic and relaxing properties, quite a program ...
As a guest, you can’t say no, as it’s a sign of respect and friendship.
Experiencing strange things, that’s also a part of discovering new cultures.
I also listened to them play music and sing, but most of all I danced with the children!
One of the happiest moments of my life, I’m still very moved when I talk about it.
Receiving so much kindness, love and joy from complete strangers is what makes the beauty of our humanity.
You understood, if you have paid attention to the photos, whether on a boat or in a village, music and dancing are omnipresent in Fijian culture, I love this.
And after so much emotion, it's time to relax and enjoy the shows offered at sunset ...
No doubt I have a special connection to the Pacific Ocean, and I can't wait to go on a plane to discover new beautiful places ...
In the meantime, I'll just watch Vaiana again, the Disney movie I talked about in my article Merry Christmas 2020.
And also, a great video at the end of the article, a change of scenery in your living room 😉
You can also read my previous articles about Fiji:
And thank you to the InterContinental Fiji, who made my stay and all my excursions unforgettable!
Find all the Travel Articles: HERE.
And as a reminder, some of my favourites:
No article next Saturday, I’ll be very busy, I have to attend several seminars including one with his Holiness the Dalai Lama 😊
Next article: Saturday May 15th
Have a wonderful month of May everyone!
Love & Joy,
I should have been in Paris this month, unfortunately with the confinement I changed my plans but that doesn’t prevent me from showing you more of this magnificent French capital which is full of countless treasures.
I’ve chosen for this week one of the gems of France, which I had time to appreciate during my Honeymoon 2, last year.
Let's be honest, the Louvre Museum is huge, spread over nearly 250,000m2, of which 70,000m2 are devoted to exhibition, with 403 rooms, and 35,000 artworks out of the 500,000 preserved.
It’s also the largest museum in the world (in terms of exhibition area), in addition to being the most visited in the world.
So, I won't be able to show you everything at once, but today I'm going to talk about some legendary pieces of art.
First of all, the Louvre surprises with its architecture.
From one room to another, atmospheres are different, we travel in time and space, we discover all the styles of decoration, but also the history of France, and the history of its different owners of Philippe II to Napoleon III, via Henri IV or Louis XIV, but also more recently the French Presidents.
No less than 800 years of construction, transformation, and renovation ...
After my articles on the Palace of Versailles, the Garnier Palace, the Pantheon, the Louvre is a magnificent palace to discover.
It became a museum in 1793, the majority of the artworks coming from the Royal Collection, which became national property during the French Revolution.
It survived the changes of power and the 2 world wars, and continues to this day to acquire and protect artistic treasures.
Even without the artworks, I’d spend hours admiring and exploring every nook and cranny from floor to ceiling!
As you know, the Louvre is full of sculptures and paintings from all eras, and I’ll show you many of them in different articles.
But this time, I present to you my favourite sculpture: the Venus de Milo.
Magnificent marble sculpture dating from 120 BC, it’d represent Aphrodite the goddess of love and beauty (Venus for the Romans).
Obviously, you know my attachment to Greece since My Solo Wedding in Santorini, and this masterpiece of Greek sculpture adds to the wonderful creations I’ve shown you previously:
Discovered in 1820, by a Greek peasant on the island of Milo, island of the Cyclades, it was acquired by a French ambassador who offered it to Louis XVIII, and the latter donated it to the Louvre in 1821.
She was hidden at the Château de Valençay during the 2nd World War.
Today, she stands almost alone in the Galerie des Antiques, surrounded by red marble from the time of Napoleon I.
As I already explained in my article Honeymoon 2, I had never been able to have a picture taken with her before, for the good reason that there were always too many people.
This time, I had all the time and the opportunity to have a tête-à-tête with Mona Lisa, a moment of pure happiness and emotion.
In 1518, Francis I bought the painting from Leonardo da Vinci, and joined the collection of the Louvre during the Revolution.
She was moved too during World War II, like almost the entire Louvre collection, but her hiding place, the Château de Chambord.
In 2005, she was placed in the centre of the museum's largest room, protected in an air-conditioned display case due to its fragility, as it’s an oil painting on a poplar wood panel.
I'm going to show you something you don’t necessarily think of with the Louvre Museum and yet, the Crown Jewels!
It’s true that we got rid of Kingship a long time ago, and we’ve forgotten that incredible pieces of goldsmith's work, crockery, furniture and jewellery were created in the past and represent an incredible richness of craftmanship and luxury.
And to present them with dignity, nothing better than the Galerie d'Apollon created at the request of Louis XIV. Rich in gilding, painting and sculpture, it easily recalls the splendour of the Palace of Versailles, no wonder since the same artists took care of the Hall of Mirrors. Above all, this is the room that for the first time, Louis XIV associated his power with the symbol of the sun.
Today, among other things, we discover the Regent diamond of 140 carats, bought in 1717 by Philippe d´Orléans, Regent of France, and which Louis XIV had refused in the past because it was too expensive.
Along with Louis XIV's Blue Diamond, they were stolen during the Revolution, a burglary at the Hôtel du Garde-Meubles where they were stored.
The Regent was found a year later, however the blue diamond was lost and transformed to become the famous Hope Diamond (exhibited at the National Museum of Natural History in Washington USA).
If the Mona Lisa is the most visited work of art in the world, the Hope diamond is in second place, our Kings of France certainly had great taste.
By the way, these magnificent jewels remind me of my article Kensington Palace in London.
And if you’d like to know the full history of these jewels, don't miss the fabulous discussion at the Ecole School of Jewelry Art - Van Cleef & Arpels, which will take place on May 5 & 6: Link for registration (free event).
I described this wonderful school in my article:
I never tire of learning and discovering with them the incredible history of stones, metals and jewellery and I encourage you to visit their website: link.
Check my Previous articles about Paris:
And I invite you to watch the little video at the end of the article, which shows the successive constructions of the Louvre Palace, it's fascinating ...
Have a fantastic week everyone!
Love & Joy,
May 27, 2017, Santorini, Aegean island (Greece). I am about to go down the magnificent stone stairs holding my father's arm, to participate in the wedding I have been waiting for, and preparing for a year and a half. The guests are seated. The weather is capricious. However, this ceremony is special, the groom is not here. He left the marital ship three months before, and I took the decision to marry without him, to marry myself!
This week, my article is dedicated to my unpublished book My Solo Wedding in Santorini.
I'm still looking for an agent and a publisher, but if there are two qualities that are rooted in me, they are determination and persistence.
All the decisions, actions I take, no matter how difficult or how long it takes, I always go to the end with conviction and confidence.
And while waiting to be able to make you fully enjoy this book, testimonial of my unusual wedding, all the details and especially the reason for my decision, the Book page (at the top) has been updated 😊.
You’ll find all the excerpts I’ve already shared with you, in previous articles as well as videos.
And of course, the reason for this literary adventure: Why a book?
Most of all, I wanted to thank you for all the love and support you’re giving me on this crazy adventure. You’re the ones who prevent me from giving up, I’m infinitely grateful...
And to show my affection, I decided to share one of the most important chapters of my book.
My story gives some hope & courage. As for the moral, I let you discover it below (entire chapter) and also permanently on the Book page of this website.
(For your understanding of the excerpt, know that my ex-fiancé is called E)
Have a fantastic week!
Love & Joy,
My Solo Wedding in Santorini or How It Saved My Life
by Laëtitia Nguyen
"Our greatest glory is not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall." -Confucius
And yes, it's Easter weekend, and while some of us thought of celebrating it with our family (me for example!), France is re-confined just before the school holidays ...
But let’s not lose our enthusiasm nor our faith in a better future, and that’s why I’m taking you today to visit the Basilica of St Remi in Reims.
After my Solo Wedding in Santorini, I’ve spent a lot of time in this beautiful region of Champagne-Ardennes, which includes the city of Reims, and I’ve already introduced you to some great attractions:
St Remi Basilica is almost as tall as Reims Cathedral, 413ft long (126m), like Notre-Dame de Paris and 190ft wide (58m).
It was built in the 11th century, but more construction occurred for several centuries until the 19th century, but its golden age dates from the 12th century.
It was largely destroyed during the 1st World War, and 40 years were necessary for its reconstruction (20 for the Cathedral of Reims).
Roman and Gothic in style, its volumes are very impressive and make the place very solemn.
Many items of furniture and decoration were destroyed and ransacked during the French Revolution.
However, some sumptuous elements are still present and distinguish it from other religious buildings such as:
Let's admire now the classic stained-glass windows that have withstood ages and wars, accompanied today by contemporary stained glass windows created between 1950 and 1980.
But what makes this basilica unique is that it keeps the relics of Bishop Saint Remi, the very one who baptised Clovis, the first King of France. This is the reason why it was originally built.
His tomb is majestic and beautifully displayed, although this is only a 19th century replica, the original being looted and vandalised during the revolution.
Moreover, the basilica is decorated with many chapels including the chapel of the Virgin of the Vow, and an ambulatory to accommodate the many pilgrims.
A video to watch at the end, unfortunately it's in French, but you can still enjoy the beautiful images...
Don't hesitate to re-read my articles from previous years:
No article next week but you can continue to follow me on my social media ...
Next Post: April 17, 2021
Love & Joy,
As we close this month of March, which is also a celebration of women's history #womenshistorymonth, I’d like to pay tribute to Elsa Peretti who left for another realm on March 18 at the age of 80.
Famous jewellery designer and designer, she was born in Florence (Italy) in 1940, and grew up in Rome and Switzerland.
After studying interior design in Rome, she became a model in Barcelona (Spain) before moving to New York to work for the famous American fashion designer Halston, followed by many others…
She rubbed shoulders with the biggest celebrities, Andy Warhol, Liza Minelli, Cher, but also the greatest photographers.
In 1975, she was even immortalised by Helmut Newton!
In 1974, she became a designer for Tiffany & Co. and revolutionised the jewellery industry by making silver chic and precious.
Tiffany & Co, an American company founded in New York in 1837 and you know I love this city very much (reread Spring in NYC).
No less than 30 timeless and modern collections with among the most famous: Open heart, Bean, Bone cuff, Lacquer bangle ...
She who loved to travel (alone) was inspired by know-how and techniques from around the world.
She also created many accessories and objects for the home ...
"Style is to be yourself." Elsa Peretti
Her creations for this house belongs to history, several of them are part of the permanent collections of the largest museums:
You can find her collections for Tiffany & Co by clicking here: LINK.
Elsa Peretti was also a philanthropist, in 2000 she created the Nando Peretti Foundation (NPF), a foundation in honour of her father.
Countless projects have emerged in favour of the environment, education, women's rights ...
An artist with a big heart.
The first time she liked one of my Instagram posts, I felt so blessed.
To tell the truth, I don't know if it was her or someone from her team who saw my photos, and yet it's like somehow we were connected.
She's the kind of woman I wish I had in my life. I’d have loved to meet her. Maybe in another incarnation.
This woman will be my inspiration forever ...
I'm lucky enough to own one of these famous Bone cuffs, I only wear it on very special occasions, and I wore it during my interview for the late night show in Athens.
The embodiment of strength and femininity, this cuff represents to me the modern elegance of an independent and visionary woman.
And to tell my Solo Wedding in Santorini on the biggest Greek TV channel, this jewel was essential for me, like a kind of talisman, a protection.
Check the Article: TV Interview - Behind the Scenes
I also wore it in Paris for the beautiful wedding of gay friends (reread Superwomen 3).
It was written in the 2016 Tiffany catalog:
Bold and powerful yet feminine and unpretentious, just like the women it was created for, the Bone cuff has become a mainstay in the world of fashion and design.
An incredible woman who has crossed ages, and has never stopped building / rebuilding herself, always staying true to who she was.
A great example of how creativity, art, can transcend a human being and vice versa.
Keep shining Elsa, you are now a star among the stars!
Reread my Series Superwomen:
Have a wonderful week!
Love & Joy,
I hope you’re enjoying the effects of the new moon, and you’ve decluttered as I recommended to you last week in my article Detox Your Life.
Spring is here, well in theory, because it’s not the 10 degrees of temperature predicted these days in my city that will bring me out of my cave.
For those who follow me regularly, you know how much I love NYC. And in fact, the very first time I went there was in spring 2013!
I love this city so much that I plan to celebrate in 2027, the 10th anniversary of my Solo Wedding 😊
In the meantime, I went to dig through my photo archive and decided to show you a little more New York this week.
Nothing more symbolic than tulips to represent this season ...
If the city and bay of New York were discovered in 1524, it didn’t take this name before 1664 when the English conquered it from the Dutch.
Initially, it was even French because it was discovered on behalf of François 1er.
At the end of the 18th century, accompanying strong demographic growth, the city developed according to a Hippodamian urban plan, like a grid. So easy to walk around and get your bearings!
Today, it’s the largest city in the United States with more than 8,300,000 inhabitants (20 million inhabitants with its suburbs) for an area of 302.6 square miles (784 km2).
It’s also the most populous English-speaking city in the world.
This city calls for curiosity and is definitely very different from European cities.
Yet the atmosphere seems familiar to us, the Empire State Building, the Rockefeller Center, Broadway, Time Square, the yellow cabs, the police, everything reminds us of the movies and series we have watched ...
The architecture is really fascinating in this city, and I’ve already explained the construction of the Rockefeller Center.
But my favourite thing about spring is of course the famous Central Park!
With its 341 hectares of greenery, 2.5 miles (4 km) long, with its many trails and lakes, it’s the perfect place to recharge.
Created from scratch, it took 13 years of construction before it was completed in 1873.
As nature comes back to life, we appreciate its beauty and benefits even more ...
On foot, by taxi, bus, metro, bicycle, there are many ways to get around, but crossing the city by rickshaw is the most fun (when there’s no traffic jam ...).
Let’s get out of the city to admire the Statue of Liberty.
From its full title “Liberty Enlightening the World”, this neoclassical copper statue with a steel structure weighs 225 tons and stands 151ft (46m) high, but 305ft (93m) in total on its concrete and granite plinth.
Donated by France in 1886 to the United States to celebrate the centenary of the American Declaration of Independence. This is the work of 3 men: Eugène Viollet-le-Duc (Architect), Auguste Bartholdi (Sculptor) and Gustave Eiffel (Engineer).
Visits weren't allowed when I was there, so I just photographed her on the ferry to Staten Island. It remains a very moving meeting.
One of my dreams is to fly over the city by helicopter, you’re not surprised if you’ve read my Series of Articles In the Air.
Each time, the weather prevented me, but I keep it on my list 😊, maybe next time ...
Till then, a very nice video at the end of this article.
Reread my Previous Articles:
You can read all my travel articles here: link.
Happy Spring to all!
Love & Joy,
Some of you may have detoxified your body in January, after the holiday season.
And as spring approaches, no doubt you plan to clean up and declutter your house.
In my case, I have a much more holistic approach that I practice every month, right after the new moon, which is a good time for regeneration and renewal.
After My Solo Wedding in Santorini, I chose to harmonise myself with the moon cycle to benefit from her energetic influence. Very judicious since my zodiac sign is Cancer and the Moon is my planet ...
(I took the photo below from France – Blue Moon - October 31, 2020)
To feel good, nothing better than taking care of your body. For the occasion, a full body and face scrub, manicure, pedicure, we cleanse ourselves from head to toe, and for those who can, a bath to relax, a sauna or hammam even better ...
With the sanitary restrictions, not everyone has the opportunity to go in nature, but of course being able to walk in a park, a forest or on the beach is extremely beneficial.
A tip I use, I watch relaxation videos with the sounds of nature, and more specifically of the ocean, with a little imagination, we can feel good easily! (Video later in the article).
A specific exercise is a plus, before I’d have told you swimming, with the pools closed, today I prefer dancing, first of all because that's my passion, then because my whole body works and it helps eliminate water retention.
And to detoxify from the inside, vary your food for a few days, avoid fatty and sugary food, consume beetroot which is an excellent cleanser, and drink a lemon squeezed in lukewarm water as soon as you wake up.
If your eating habits are hard to change, try having a smoothie a day, it's easier to add new food than to take them out, and at least you'll get plenty of fruits and veggies without realising it. And obviously sangria doesn’t count hahaha.
My favourite detox: spinach leaves, beetroot, kiwi.
Variation: salad, cucumber, lemon, honey.
Above all, drink a lot of water to help eliminate toxins.
Obviously, you can apply all this several times a month, listen to your body.
Once a month, check your cupboards, or even alternate, a different one every month: clothes, medicine, freezer, children's toys ...
Tidy up, clean, recycle, resell or give away, lots of websites, apps and organisations, give new life to your objects, you’re doing a good deed for our world and for the planet!
To benefit even more from the positive effects of energies, you can apply Feng Shui.
Marie Diamond is the high priestess of this practice, she looked after the house of Steven Spielberg, Bill Gates etc. and on her website you can get a free personalised report, full of information: link.
And if we added a plant here, we removed this broken lamp we’ll never repair, maybe some curtains, really it's not that complicated ...
Watch again my video to enhance your place:
I keep telling you about the benefits of meditation, and yes again, this is a great opportunity to clear your head & to prepare it to receive more.
Any form of relaxation to calm your mind and get rid of the superfluous is welcome.
For my part, I use:
Detoxifying your mind also means not using your phone, the internet or TV for a day!
And why not going to the beach, remember my video:
Precisely, sorting out your everyday life, like cleaning your phone!
Save your photos of the month, erase those that are unnecessary, for example all the screenshots that are no longer useful...
Do the same with apps and emails. Don’t forget to unsubscribe from ads and promos you never check.
Delete all unnecessary cookies.
Think to cancel subscriptions you no longer need.
And exit toxic people from your contact list and/or social media.
When you do this once a month, it doesn't take too long, and you quickly get used to doing it without it being a chore. If necessary, set yourself a reminder, for example every first Saturday of the month.
I invite you to watch my video on recharging your energy:
My last tip:
You pick a task from your to-do list - you know the one that keeps growing with lots of stuff you postpone - and you stick to it.
You’ll feel so liberated afterwards that your energy will be boosted for several days. And very often, doing this task is much less painful than you think.
Access to all my Videos: Link.
After my last article Women in Space, I told myself that a little tour of the moon would be nice (video at the end) ...
Happy regeneration and a Happy New Moon!
Have a very good week!
Love & Joy,
International Women's Day is coming, and I never miss an opportunity to speak out on this day of the year.
You now know my series Superwomen, articles in the form of a manifesto where I unveil my beliefs and values, my support for women, but also for the LGBTQ community, in favour of equity & equality for each luminous being on this planet.
After February - re-read last article - in which I mentioned my ability to bounce back and pursue my dreams, today I return to my dearest wish, to someday visit Mars.
I have already mentioned it several times:
And then, with the perfect landing of Perseverance on Mars recently - the new exploratory robot from NASA (US National Aeronautics and Space Administration) - I was even more eager to share this special interest with you.
Below are images of Perseverance sent just after landing (Photo Credit: NASA):
So today I’d like to highlight these women who have helped change our vision of the future by changing our perception on Earth!
Valentina Tereshkova, Russian, was the first woman in space in 1963, just 2 years after the first Russian man, Yuri Gagarin. Until today she remains the only woman to have flown solo!
As in many fields, they had to show perseverance, courage, and compromise to combat stereotypes and ignorance.
Yet since the 1960s, it has been proven that women are more resistant to loneliness, pain, heat, cold ...
Despite this, it took almost 20 years for this to happen again with Svetlana Savitskaïa in 1982 (a Soviet again), then the first American, Sally Ride in 1983, and a French in 1996 Claudie Haigneré.
As a reminder:
Astronaut = American astronaut
Spationaute = French astronaut
Cosmonaut = Russian astronaut
In the future, let's count on NASA's Artemis mission, including 9 women out of 18 astronauts, to make the first woman walk on the moon.
But also, Alyssa Carson, 19, the youngest astronaut in the world in training, for NASA, who should be one of the first astronauts on Mars!
Have you seen the movie the Hidden Figures?
Incredible one (2016) that received numerous awards. Based on a true story, it tells how a group of 3 African American mathematicians contributed to several NASA missions in the 1960s.
In fact, NASA just named one of their buildings Mary W. Jackson after one of them.
The Series Away on Netflix with the fabulous actress Hilary Swank, commander of the first space team to Mars.
But also, the Series Right Stuff on Disney Plus, recounting the beginnings of NASA and the first American in space. Based on real events, the story is set in the 1950s during the cold war, and aptly shows the mentalities of the time and the struggle of women for more respect!
Even today, remember that only 10% of astronauts in the world are women, mainly due to a lack of candidates.
The ESA (European Space Agency) has just opened applications to everyone, no age limit but you must have a degree in medicine, science or engineering. Don’t hesitate!!
My childhood dream was to become an astronaut, today I know that I’’ll go to space and more specifically to Mars, as a tourist!
And yes, I don’t fit the admission criteria unfortunately, but my mission is here, to share my story, My Solo Wedding in Santorini on our beautiful blue planet, and maybe I'll continue to share it beyond in the future 😊
Courage is simply the willingness to be afraid and act anyway. Robert Anthony
Inspiring people to be themselves & to stretch their limits, is the mission that I’ve chosen to take with pride.
My Previous Articles:
My video in honour of Women's Day.
You’ll find it also on my social media & on this website!
Remember the time when women weren't allowed to wear pants or to be a doctor (and it's still the case in some countries)...
At the end of this article, the video of the last spacewalk, on March 5, 2021, from the International Space Station for repair. For the occasion, a duo composed of a woman and a man! Kate Rubins from NASA and Soichi Noguchi from JAXA (Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency).
Women & Men, be a dreamer, for yourself but also as an example to show the world that anything is possible!
Sky’s the limit...
Happy International Women’s Day!
Keep shining my babes, we are all stars!!
Love & Joy,
It took me a long time to find the title of this article, I knew I wanted to talk about this particular month of the year but I had a hard time defining it, unlike for example I love December!
February is a month that always forces me to question myself, after the good energy of the new year (reread Happy New Year 2021), there are always events that shake my schedule and make me reconsider my decisions and even my whole life!
Strangely, a lot of my actions took place during this period, not because of an overflowing creativity, but because the universe is pushing me each time, leading me out of my comfort zone and bringing out the fighter that is within me, the warrior who never gives up on my dreams ...
"The worst brings out the best in me ..." L.
Here I am, several days after the sudden and dramatic announcement of the breakup by my ex-fiancé and the cancellation of our wedding, I choose to marry myself in Santorini.
As I sell my apartment, get rid of all my furniture, and carefully pack my wedding dress in my hand luggage, I prepare to leave Australia, the country that was my home for 7 wonderful years.
I'm not quite sure what I'm doing right now, overwhelmed by pain and fear of the future, yet I'm sure my Solo Wedding is the right decision.
First failure in the process of freezing my eggs, I was then in the Spanish capital, Madrid.
I'm in a store when my doctor calls me to tell me the bad news, always upbeat and positive, I'm not prepared for it, a stab in my heart, another disappointment and the fear of never succeeding that inhabits me now...
This is the moment I’ve chosen to launch Blog About L. with the first article on Valentine's Day to honour love: My Solo Wedding in Santorini.
Like a spell that I cast to bring positive vibes into my life.
Some financial issue befell me while I’m in Crete, writing my first book My Solo Wedding in Santorini.
No way to give up now, I just can't accept that.
And a second magazine cover that confirms my project, a sign from the universe.
After a round trip to Athens at the Australian Embassy, the support of my parents and the precious help of one of my friends, I can breathe again, I can finish what I started…
I plan to spend time with my best friend in Paris, then go back to Greece, I stop for a few days at my sister's in Reims on the way, but the lockdown is announced, I stay in France (and I haven’t taken the plane since…).
Several months you’re asking for videos, I start then, and once again post my first video on YouTube and Instagram on Valentine's Day.
I must admit that I was very nervous at this idea, yet today I take great pleasure in sharing these moments with you, you’re always helping me to grow ...
And making videos in public spaces is even more intimidating, but I'm doing pretty well I guess😊 ...
Then again, not everything was as pink as in my last article Pink my Love Colour, but this time I refused to see the negative side, what must happen, happens, and every disappointment is an open door to a greater possibility.
Yes, I was expecting a lot from this collaboration with a famous agent from New York, who believed in my project, one option that evaporates in nature, but how many more that appear without knowing it?
Like a gardener, I plant seeds, but I can't see yet what is germinating.
Having faith and keeping my inner peace is what matters most to me now. Hence, a lot of coaching, mentoring to develop myself on a personal and spiritual level.
Constantly growing in order to flourish ...
So yes, happy February because despite hardships, I stretched the limits of my consciousness to better see the infinite possibilities of happiness. I found peace.
A blog which has become a website with videos and excerpts from my book (not yet published).
An adventure that never ceases to take me to unknown and exciting territories.
My joy of life that I share daily on my social media.
And this interaction that I have with you, which carries me and makes me want to give you more.
Three years that I share with you my life, my dreams, my inspiration ...
Happy February, Happy Blog Anniversary!
"Chasing your dreams is the biggest fight of your life. "L
And Happy Birthday to all Pisces, including my mum!
Have a good week,
Love & Joy,
For many people love and passion are associated with the colour red, but for me, pink is my big love story ...
By the way, as a child, the first doll that made me dream, Barbie Dream Glow with a beautiful pink crinoline dress of course, I’ve talked about her in my article Barbie Exhibition.
This is also the colour I chose for my Solo Wedding in Santorini:
In French, roses, the flowers gave the name to the colour “rose”, because they are the most common.
In English however, we say "pink" nothing to do with roses, but here too its origin comes from the name of a flower: the garden pink or wild pink.
And for information, when you offer pink roses, you declare a tender and romantic love, and darker is the pink, the more it refers to gratitude and sensuality ...
A colour I also use in my photos, I like to see “la vie en rose” (life in pink):
Colour I’ve decided to adopt for this Valentine's Day! And also for work lol, just love it hahaha!
No date, and to be honest I don't even remember my last Valentine's date. By the way, that's what I say in this video, but not only, I'm talking mostly about self-love:
Whatever you’re doing today, choose to celebrate yourself and accept all the love you have for yourself and for others.
“There is only one happiness in life, to love and be loved.” George Sand
Read my previous articles:
Happy Valentine’s day!
Love & Joy,
After talking about Madrid and Sydney, two cities I like a lot, back to nature.
And for that, nothing better than Australia of course.
I lived in this wonderful country for 7 years, before my Solo Wedding in Santorini, which gave me lots of opportunities to visit amazing places.
With its 7.692 million km², I still have a lot to visit, for example I’ve never been to the west coast. It gives me even more reasons to want to go back someday.
In the meantime, I'm taking you today to another famous island in Queensland: Moreton Island!
A precious memory that the discovery of this island for a whole weekend and that for several reasons.
First, I did it with my younger sister in February 2016, just 5 years ago. She came to live a year with me and this excursion was her last, and what an adventure!
Pick up in Brisbane by our driver and guide with a 4X4, to board a ferry; at only 40km (25mi), the crossing takes about an hour and a half. Which is long enough for my sister to be seasick...
Third largest sand island in the world, only 4X4 vehicles are allowed on this island classified as a national park.
By the way, for information, the 4 largest sand islands in the world are in Queensland
Like the visit of North Stradbroke island, I’ve told you about already, the discovery of Moreton is also adventurous…
Apart from the white sand beaches as far as the eye can see, which I personally never tire of, you can discover the sand dunes in the desert.
As impressive as those in Dubai (reread the article Desert) and perfect for tobogganing with a wooden board.
First time for my sister & I, was fantastic; no photos or videos unfortunately, I was too busy having fun!
The 4X4 also provides easy access to the heights of the island to Cape Moreton Lighthouse, the first lighthouse built in Queensland in 1857.
One of the buildings has been transformed into an information centre with a presentation of the island and its history.
Remember that Moreton Bay including Brisbane, and Australia in general, was initially a penitentiary centre for British convicts.
When the weather is clear, you can easily see whales, sharks, turtles, dolphins, rays and dugongs.
The vegetation is very astonishing here and offers a surprising spectacle, perfect for photography.
Let’s stop at the Blue Lagoon, a lake in the middle of the island, with a sandy bottom formed by the natural collection of rainwater over thousands of years. Its cool water infused with the natural tea tree oils that surround it, makes it a popular spot.
For fish & snorkelling lovers, let’s head to the beach to enjoy the 15 ships that were deliberately sunk there in 1963 to create a breakwater. Coral and wildlife have taken over the place and the atmosphere is quite unique.
Again, no photos, I was head underwater admiring fishes, but beautiful images in the video at the end of the article ...
You know me well enough now to guess that I picked the hotel instead of the campsite.
However, the Tangalooma Island Resort is not like any hotel.
Originally the place was a whaling fishing station that operated between 1952 and 1962. The island is in the way of the whale migration route from June to November.
Today, an Eco Centre installed within the hotel, protects and informs about the environment and the island’s wildlife. Lots of activities are organised around it, interesting for both adults and children.
A whole ecosystem coexists here, which makes it a surprising and magical place ...
I've saved the best for last, if you've read my article My Favourite Animals, I talked about it briefly: dolphins!
Every evening, about ten wild bottlenose dolphins come to the shores of the hotel.
You have the option of being able to feed one of them by hand. The research team take the opportunity to check the health of the dolphins and to count them.
They are only fed 10-20% of their daily requirement to keep them wild.
The experience is incredible and truly extraordinary, the dolphins are curious and playful, and being able to approach them so closely is a great chance.
To leave this little paradise, we had to take the ferry again, much to the despair of my sister who would have preferred the helicopter!
Reread my Previous Articles:
Have a great week!
Love & Joy,
I was in Madrid 4 years ago, to freeze my eggs, a new city for me that I discovered with pleasure and great curiosity.
Another milestone in my life, after My Solo Wedding in Santorini.
Freezing my eggs was a thoughtful decision, however the process was longer and more emotionally painful than I’d have thought ...
But I’ve already told you all this in detail:
Faith is what has helped me, the one I have in God, in the Universe but also faith in myself and in my choices, the way I react to hardships, and how I constantly challenge myself to become a better me day after day.
Without wanting to, this article is timely because this week I’ve been greatly tested on that side, staying on course towards your dreams while the path seems to be giving way beneath your feet…
To be silent and to learn to listen to oneself, this is the main principle of meditation but also of prayer.
And in fact, in 2018, I was going to the sumptuous Almudena Cathedral every day to calm my mind...
After the grandiose and opulent Royal Palace, the Almudena Cathedral located just opposite can’t be missed.
Built in the heart of the city, near the Plaza Mayor, its neoclassical style and multiple huge entrances make it one of the main attractions.
Its baroque dome and its columns inevitably recall the Pantheon in Paris which I talked about during my Honeymoon 2.
Begun in 1883, it wasn’t completed until 110 years later, for lack of money, and of political and religious wars.
Finally, in 1993 Pope John Paul II consecrated it, and a statue in effigy adorns one of the main entrances ...
It’s equally majestic in the evening, bringing out other details of its incredible architecture ...
102m (335ft) long and 82m (269ft) high, this cathedral is very impressive with its 4,800 m2 (52,000 sq ft).
But its originality lies in the duality of its architectural style: neoclassical on the outside (like the Royal Palace), but Gothic on the inside with modern and contemporary artworks.
Very different to the Reims Cathedral (France), that I’ve showed you already.
The wedding of King Felipe VI and Letizia Ortiz was celebrated in this cathedral in 2004.
This cathedral is a true incarnation of several eras dedicated to the Virgin of Almudena who sits in its centre.
And many people flock every day to approach the statue erected on a magnificent platform.
The Virgin of Almudena is the patron saint of Madrid, she’d have appeared several times in the past, near a wall built when the city was an ancient Muslim medina called Almudena.
Celebrated on November 9 with many processions, religious services, the entrance is completely covered with flowers, it’s a very important day for Madrid inhabitants. I had the chance to attend once and it’s fascinating.
Besides, I strongly encourage you to visit the Cathedral Museum, which exhibits the Virgin's ceremonial outfits and accessories, and also tells the story of the Diocese of Madrid (unfortunately no photos allowed).
Especially, the entrance to the museum will give you access to the Dome of the cathedral at 70m (230ft) high, surrounded by the 12 apostles.
And to admire the city, you don't need a helicopter like in my last article In the Air 3, the view from the roof is breathtaking!
The absolutely sumptuous neo-Romanesque crypt opened to the public in 1911 ...
Madrid is a city I like a lot, with its rich history, architecture, culture, there’s a lot to discover in this city.
Read my previous articles about Madrid:
Have a lovely week everyone!
Love & Joy,
After my article last week on My Solo Wedding Fireworks in Santorini, I decided to keep my head in the sky.
I’ve shown you in the past how much I love spending time in the air:
Today I'm taking you to the other side of the planet, to visit an incomparable place from the sky: Sydney!
An Australian city discovered by James Cook in 1770 - who to get there largely used the navigation instruments mentioned in my article The Greenwich Meridian, moreover certain objects and documents of the navigator are exposed in the museum of the Royal Observatory of Greenwich - Sydney is a unique city in many ways and it can be visited by land, sea and air…
The helicopter is a great way to discover its architecture and landscape from a different and grandiose perspective, as it covers 12,300 km2 (4,750 sq. miles)!! In comparison, London covers 1,572km2 ...
Thus, we can easily admire its magnificent opera house, the Harbour Bridge, Circular Quay, Anzac Bridge, the Olympic facilities, but also its numerous beaches ...
I’ll tell you more about this city in a future article.
Re-read my articles about Australia:
For brave people, you can also climb to the top of the Harbour Bridge, after 1,332 steps you reach a height of 49m (161ft.), 3 hours of journey in total.
Quite honestly, I’m not brave enough to do it but I have no doubt that it’s an incredible experience to live ...
However, I’ve been to the top of the Sydney Tower at 260 metres (853ft) high to admire the city at dusk.
Everything becomes magical with the lights ...
Sydney by helicopter is one of my fondest memories, I’m happy to have shared it with you and I hope I’ve made you travel in the air ...
Have a great week!
Love & Joy,
Since in my last article Happy New Year 2021, I’ve talked about fireworks, I thought it was time to tell you about mine ...
It was one of the things planned initially with my fiancé and, in my grief, it had become something that I was looking forward to, no way to cancel it for my Solo Wedding in Santorini.
It’s one of the highlights of my wedding, I wouldn't have missed it for anything in the world. How happy I am to have lived this moment, forever etched on my memory.
Even in a dark sky, you can see colours, don’t give up on the stars and the sparks.
Self-love is the paintbrush and you are the painter.
I created a masterpiece from the most dramatic event of my life, don’t let anyone destroy your light, you’re precious to this world…
Obviously, I say a lot about it in my book My Solo Wedding in Santorini (not yet published) but for you, here’s a new excerpt:
"The fireworks were launched below the terrace, along the cliff, which made the rockets explode almost before our eyes, it was just magical and so private. It is like going to a concert in a very small venue. We are so close to the stage that we could touch the artist. Three minutes of pure happiness accompanied by a song that I love.
More excerpts on the page dedicated to my book: here.
But I give you the list of all my articles with an extract from my book My Solo Wedding in Santorini (you can click on it to access them directly):
I’m never tired of talking and re-talking about my Solo Wedding in Santorini!
In my last video, I mentioned how proud I was of what I had accomplished over the past 20 years. Obviously, my marriage is my greatest pride.
Keep shining and enjoy life!!
Have an amazing week everyone!
Love & Joy,
Youhouhhhh!! Finally, here it is 2021, a new decade begins, with new expectations, hopes, dreams and interaction to come ...
I wish you all a magical, bright & wonderful year!!
I hope you had a great holiday season.
I spent NYE with my parents, and last time was in 2015. They came to see me in Australia, and we were outside the Sydney Opera House for the gigantic fireworks. An absolutely unforgettable memory. I put the full video of this year's Sydney fireworks at the end of the article 😊
What a year 2020! We’ve been through a lot, definitely a very interesting and demanding period. It drove us into a corner and pushed us to question ourselves about the meaning of our lives.
In my articles Happy New Year 2020 and 2019 to 2020, I said, among other things:
My resolutions for 2020: to sustain my momentum, not to plan anything and to live driven by opportunities, new people, and of course to continue to realise old dreams and create new ones.
I definitely had a good intuition by not planning anything, I was unable to travel abroad in 2020, but I took you with me on my previous adventures:
However, in 2020, I had a wonderful Honeymoon 2 in the most beautiful city in the world:
And I still have a lot to tell you ...
In 2020, I talked a lot about myself again lol:
My quarantine articles obviously:
I hope you’ll keep some good habits like dancing every day!!
I did my best to inspire you more this year:
I couldn't attend any new ballet, but I did watch some on the internet!
This period definitely made me more interested in the options available online, then I met incredible people and attended some amazing world conferences ...
My Resolutions for 2021:
Recently a friend told me why stop something that is working?
So, let's continue: the blog, the videos, my social media...
And if there’s anything you want me to talk about or improve, please tell me: here.
Obviously, publishing my book My Solo Wedding in Santorini, or How It Saved My Life is still relevant today, but I'm also working on the next one:
After… My Solo Wedding in Santorini, or How My Healing Became A Mission…
I promise to tell you more soon ...
However, this year, I intend to travel, find where to put my bags for good and may be even find love ... 😊
“I was born to inspire people to be themselves! "L.
And thank you again for your support & unconditional love, I wouldn't have so much fun creating and writing without you!
No article next week, I'll be busy writing my greetings cards & meditating to charge my energy for the New Year.
Take the opportunity to catch up with the articles you haven't read 😉
And don't worry, I’ll stay active on social media:
Happy New Year again, I believe in you and your magic, and as I said on my photo at the beginning: leave sparkles wherever you go ...
Be confident, be yourself and shine like a thousand fireworks!
Love & Joy,
Hope you all had a Merry Christmas, I thought about you and even told you in my last video! (I'll add it at the very end of this article)
This year, no crazy New Year’s Eve party, we are all in the same boat, no matter where we are in the world, so I decided to share with you my favourite musicals, to have something to do…
Yes, after the Disney Princesses and Ballet, this is another of my passions.
By the way, I've already talked a bit about it last year: Happy New Year 2020.
Let’s be precise, I’m talking about the musicals I’ve watched in theatres.
I’d like to take advantage of this article, to pay tribute to all the entertainment people who unfortunately were unable to produce their art this year, and many of whom found themselves in precarious and difficult situations.
Making people dream is a wonderful talent. Let’s be grateful for all these artists and technicians, and for their incredible magic!
What's the musical that comes to your mind spontaneously? Maybe even your favourite, you can reply in the comments below 😉
I start here with classics, some of which I love the cinema versions, and relevant during the festive season:
Another musical from composers Richard Rodgers & Oscar Hammerstein.
I obviously give you a legendary passage:
Here, musicals have been adapted long after cinema.
The first was premiered in 1951 with the incredible music of George & Ira Gershwin!! Then, in theatre from 2015.
Video to watch absolutely!!
You know I love her, I wrote about her in my Article Thank You.
Not easy to create the magic of this character without special effects, and yet nothing is impossible for Mary Poppins, including flying above the audience...
I still have goose bumps!
Two other musicals that are dear to my heart and I saw in the fabulous Théâtre Mogador in Paris:
A musical I found great & extremely funny: The Addams Family.
I'm a fan and for 1h30 I really thought I was in Morticia and Gomez's house, a bit more time and I invited myself to dinner, I think I had a thing for Cousin Itt ...
This musical was created in 2005 and adapted for the cinema in 2012, it uses the iconic songs from the 80s, you just sing and dance all along ...
And then so many others, all so extraordinary. Well, I admit that depending on the country, some casts are better than others, but the magic is always there.
There’s something intimate and wonderful about theatre you can’t have in cinema.
Almost as if we knew the actors:
Cabaret, Grease, West Side Story, Wicked, A Chorus line, Dirty dancing, Jersey Boys, Spiderman, Billy Elliot…
There are still a lot of musicals I’d like to see and fill my basket of dreams 😊
Maybe one day My Solo Wedding in Santorini will be told in music!!
And it's not strictly a musical, but the Rockettes performance at the Radio City Hall in New York is a must-see once in a lifetime!
Christmas in New York
If you are bored during these holidays, you can always re-read my previous articles, full of fun & magic:
I received pictures of beautiful Xmas trees again this week, thank you all!
As for me, on New Year's Eve, I’ll spend it with my parents, in my pyjamas, eating foie gras, oysters and cakes. Very good program in perspective: D
At the end of the article, I put more videos
+ the musical I absolutely want to see, hopefully in 2021!!!
Of course: Frozen! Chills guaranteed!!
See you next year, happy New Year's Eve!
Remember to be happy, you can do it!!
Love & Joy,