Thursday, February 26, 2015

Dreaming of Paris // Part II

Last week I did a “throw back Thursday” post about a past trip to Paris I went on with a few colleagues of mine.  We crammed several activities into just a few shorts days. If you missed the first post, be sure to check it out. I had so many photos and things to share that I decided to break the recap up into two posts. So I bring to you part deux!

 
After a wonderful dinner at Au Pied De Cochon, we headed back to the hotel to get a good nights sleep for what was going to be a very early morning.  The next day we took a road trip to Fresnoy-le Grand in Northern France about 2 hours outside of Paris. It's also where the factory for the company I work for is located. It was so amazing to see all the hand crafted work that goes into making one single piece of cast iron cookware. We had the opportunity to tour the factory and stop in the nearby retail store. After a long day of touring, we had a wonderful "light" lunch prepared for us onsite.

Le menu du jour!
 
Our first course was served in this cute little mini cocotte.


There was soup with a baguette on the side.
 

Beef bourguignon with mashed potatoes.

 
 And chocolate pots de crème.
 

 After lunch we made a quick stop at the store outside the factory. I picked up a few treasures that weren't available in the U.S. (things small enough to fit in my suitcase.)
 
 
On the drive back I was actually awake enough to enjoy the scenery. Although we were in the middle of nowhere, it was still beautiful. We passed miles and miles of vibrant green fields some with windmills some for farming. In my mind this is what I would assume the "French country side" looks like.
 

We made it back to Paris in time to stop at a few stores here and there before dinner (which I sadly have no photos of). These pretty little sweets seemed to be everywhere. 
Macaroons anyone?
 
 
 The next day was all about shopping and of course some more site seeing along the way!
 
Our first stop....Galeries Lafayette, an enormous upmarket French department store consisting of 500,000 square feet and 511 department stores.  Even if you aren't going to make a purchase, the inside of the store is worth viewing in itself. 
 
Look at all of gorgeous details. Upon walking in, I had to just stand there and take a moment to appreciate all of the beauty (and say a prayer that I wasn't going to get lost.) These photos show the different levels in the store.

 
That ceiling though...
 


Aside from the fashion portion of the shopping trip, (which was amazing and overwhelming), we did a little food browsing shopping too at Lafayette Gourmet.
 
We saw everything from colorful spices galore...
 

to nutella jars that would last a lifetime.
 
 
A few small purchases later and after coming to the realization that my bank account funds weren't going to get me very far if I stayed any longer, we decided it was time to do some more site seeing.
 
The next stop, Musee d' Orsay, best known for it's extensive collection of masterpieces by popular artists such as Monet.  As with most museums, photo taking is frowned upon, however I was able to snap a few near the entrance.
 

 
 
 After our informative tour, we decided to walk to the Lourve Museum. We didn't purchase tickets given the time crunch but instead walked around and admired the architecture.
 




Rushing to beat the sunset, we quickly hurried over to our next destination, possibly the most anticipated stop yet.
 
 
 
Although I am terrified of heights, I knew I had to somehow put that past me and make it to the top.
 
 
I am so glad that I did it because the views were breathtaking and totally worth it!
 


 
 By the time we left it was getting dark and I managed to capture this pretty shot.
 
 
Next on the agenda was dinner at Le Florimond. This was our last dinner in Paris and a delicious one at that. I don't recall the descriptions of exactly what it was that I ordered because everything was in French, but it was all amazing.
 
My entrée was a savory ravioli dish.
 
 
Followed by this leaning town of dessert.
 
 
 

As we were leaving dinner, we had to stop for one more look at the Eiffel Tower. I'm so glad we went back. I was able to see it at all different times of the day which made for some nice photos.
 

It was a great way to end our trip! 
The next morning we were on a plane back to the US. I was sad to leave but so thankful for the opportunity and the experience. And Whit, if you're reading this, feel free to book a trip for us anytime...just saying.
 
Au Revoir! 
 

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