I will be traveling with my 2019 group to Paris very soon. Before we go, I always send my list of “Paris Essentials” to my travels. As I was checking and refining the list, I started thinking about packing.
When I head to France, I am often gone over 3 weeks at a time. I always get lots of questions about packing so I thought I would share my no-fail steps to make packing a breeze. Whether you are going for a weekend or a month it works!
STEP 1- Make a list of clothing essentials, see mine below, from this list you will plan all of your outfits.
STEP 2- Decide how many days of clothes you will need and lay them out in outfits. To save space, only take bottoms that can be worn more than 1 time.t for a great trip.
STEP 3-Accessorize each outfit with everything you will need including socks, underwear, scarves and inexpensive jewelry. Using a cell phone take a photo of each outfit, this will help you remember how you planned to wear them.
STEP 4- Fold everything into square stacks by outfit. Bottoms on the bottom of the stack, tops on top and dresses folded into thirds. I like to make a separate stack for accessories.
STEP 5- Place shoes in the bottom of your bag. Next, place 4 stacks of clothing into your bag, one in each corner and voila, you are set for a great trip!, scarves and inexpensive jewelry. Using you
My Outfit Essentials are:
3-4 pairs of dark jeans that don’t stretch out
1-2 pairs of black pants
one pair of soft black pants that can be dressed up
Tune into Fox 4 KDFW, tomorrow, Wednesday, February 13th about 9:40 to see MEcooking LIVE with the morning crew!
I’ll show you how to host a Romantic Date Night, just in time for Valentine’s Day!
Instead of fighting crowds this year, opt to stay in with this mouthwatering menu. Pan seared Pork Chops with Apple Cranberry Pan Sauce served over Creamy Mashed Potatoes is decadent and satisfying and the best part, it won’t take you all day to prepare!
For a sweet ending try one of my favorite go-to recipes French Chocolate Bark.
Pork Chops with Apple Cranberry Pan Sauce
2 boneless pork chops, 6 ounces each
1-2 tablespoons flour
2 tablespoons butter
½ large Granny Smith apple, peeled and chopped
¼ cup dried cranberries
1 tablespoon onion, grated
1 small garlic clove, pressed
1 teaspoon brown sugar
2 tablespoons dry white wine
¼ cup chicken stock
¼ teaspoon sage
Salt and pepper to taste
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Melt butter in a chef’s pan set over medium/low heat. Salt and pepper pork chops liberally. Dredge chops in flour and place into the hot pan. Sear for 3-4 minutes until pork is getting brown. Flip and sear the second side. Remove the chops from the pan and place them in a glass baking dish and into the oven to finish cooking, about 18 minutes or until internal temperature reaches 155 degrees. To prepare the sauce deglaze the pan with the white wine. Add remaining ingredients and cook until mixture is thick and apples are breaking down a bit. Remove from heat and serve over the pork shops.
Creamy Mashed Potatoes
3 pounds potatoes, preferably Yukon Gold’s, peeled and diced
½ cup heavy cream
¼ cup butter
Salt and Pepper to taste
Boil potatoes in salted water until tender. Drain water, reserving 1 cup of cooking water. Place potatoes in a bowl an electric mixer and mix with cream and butter until perfectly smooth. If potatoes are still too stiff, add a bit of the cooking water until desired consistency is reached. Salt and pepper to taste.
French Chocolate Bark
1 12-ounce package of 60% cocoa chocolate chips, I use Ghirardelli’s
½ cup dried cherries, coarsely chopped
½ cup toasted pecans, coarsely chopped
½ cup coconut
Line a baking sheet with parchment or waxed paper. Melt chocolate in microwave safe bowl in 30 second intervals stirring well in between each time. Spread melted chocolate on parchment paper creating a thin sheet of chocolate. Sprinkle with fruit and nuts and slightly press into chocolate. Chill the candy in the refrigerator until set and break into pieces. Keep bark refrigerated for up to 2 weeks.
The River Seine, (pronounced like sin) gets its name from the Latin word Sequana; the Gallo-Roman goddess of the river. The Seine runs through Paris splitting in in half, on one side, the right bank and on the other the left.
The river snakes through the city making it hard to determine which side you’re on unless you are a seasoned Paris traveler.
Taking a cruise on the Seine is always an activity planned for A Taste of Paris groups on our first evening. Seeing Paris from a river view helps people understand how the city is laid out.
Not to mention the very best view of the Eiffel Tower is from a boat on the Seine!
The Seine is closely associated with Paris and is featured in many poems and songs; however, it covers much more of France than just Paris. The Seine is 482 miles long running from Dijon France through Paris and Rouen and finally to the English Channel at Le Havre and Honfleur.
The city of Paris boasts 37 bridges that span the Seine and there are no two alike!
The Seine happened to be a favorite of Sue Nagy, the ATOP guest that is being featured in today’s post answering the question “Why France?”
Sue traveled to Paris with me in 2017 and will be with me again for A Taste of Paris Goes PINK in 2019! I adore Sue’s fun nature. Here she is with friend and fellow traveler Kerry Harrison in front of Notre Dame.
This is the best picture of Sue, writing her name in her croissant dough, I am certain that was not part of the chef’s instructions!
Here is what Sue had to say about our travel. “My ATOP trip to Paris with Lorie was over the top wonderful! I loved every single moment!!”
“Lorie’s knowledge on the food, culture and neighborhoods was exceptional!
The agenda is well planned, professionally organized and a must-do for anyone that loves an adventure!”
If you travel with me to Paris, our first adventure will be a cruise on the Seine!
This is the final photo I will leave you with today. It is a blurred view but reminds me of the French impressionist paintings hanging of the Musee d’Orsay!
We all have a Bucket List, things we are dreaming of doing…
While registration for A Taste of Paris 2019 travel is open, I am exploring a simple question with past ATOP travelers; “Why France?”
It has been really fun to read the responses from so many wonderful people that have trusted me with their France vacations and to revisit so many memories as I sift through thousands of photos.
I want you to meet Debbie Finley; here she is receiving her culinary certificate at Le Cordon Bleu.
She is one of the awesome 9 that trusted me on my very first trip! These ladies will always have a special place in my heart!
I asked Debbie “Why France?”
She Said “I had always wanted to go to Paris, but my husband was not interested. When a friend and neighbor told me about the ATOP trips, I realized this was the opportunity of a lifetime.”
“The food, the friends the experiences were amazing”
“My favorite moment was the Michelin meal at Jules Verne at the Eiffel Tower, Cheers Jill”
In our rush to get through our daily activities, take some time to consider your bucket list as a reminder of what is important to you. When you are doing something you have only dreamed of, time seems to stand still.
It was truly a pleasure to help Debbie put a check by Paris on her list!
Thank you Debbie, for sharing your travel and your thoughts with me!
Register for 2019 travel TODAY! Just click for more details or email me at email@example.com
Debbie is a well-known resident of our town. She is the mother of twin boys and the grandmother to 4 precious children who she adores. She is an avid golfer and gardener and she is also very active in her work with the International Student Foundation.
As I explore “Why France?” with past and future travelers, one iconic symbol is on everyone’s list, the Eiffel Tower. It is the single most recognized symbol in the world and of course when you see it, you think of Paris, the capital of France.
The Eiffel Tower was designed by Gustave Eiffel and his team of engineers for the 1889 World’s Fair. Paris was chosen as the location for the fair to mark the 100th anniversary of the French Revolution.
The Eiffel rests on the Champ-de-Mars and this structural marvel of iron lattice stands 324 meters tall, the equivalent of an 81 story building. The tower took only 2 short years to build which is amazing when you think of the rudimentary construction capabilities of the times.
I believe the very best view of the Eiffel Tower is from the Seine, right at dusk. The tower lights up and if you are lucky enough to be sipping champagne, it’s magical!
I am excited to share that A Taste of Paris has partnered with L’amour de Paris for what can only be described as a fashion styled photo shoots at the Eiffel Tower. All of the photos you see here of me were taken by the talented and adorable CheyAnne and wow was it fun!
L’amour de Paris has offered a very special price to ATOP travelers, Thank YOU!
Register for 2019 travel TODAY! Just click for more details or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
And I’m keeping the pink theme going through the end of March to celebrate the launch of A Taste of Paris Goes PINK, an all-female culinary trip to Paris in April 2019. Grab your daughter, mother, and friends to join me for this boutique culinary excursion of a lifetime. Seats are going FAST!
Since it’s the weekend, how about an aperitif, as the French would say!
Sometimes after a long week, I just need to chill with a cocktail and some girlfriends.
My no -fuss Grapefruit Martini – a juicy balance of sweet and tart – is the ideal cocktail to serve friends or just bring the week to a close.
It’s not too sweet so if one drink won’t flip your mood, no worries, you can have a few.
You know they say, we taste with our eyes first, and this pretty pink martini would look fetching served in Luigi Bormioli retro chic glasses.
Are you planning a party for lots of BFF’s? The more the merrier, I always say!
Be sure you are stocked up on wine charms to help everyone keep their drinks straight. Below are a few of my on-trend favs. The jeweled bees by Joanna Buchanan have been buzzing around in my head since I first laid eyes on them. I am not sure how long I can resist temptation!
Registration for ATOP Travel is now OPEN. In April 2019, I am hosting a very special event: A Taste of Paris Goes PINK. This all-female trip is jam-packed with amazing offerings.
What a perfect time to travel with your mother, daughter, sister, or best friends, and ME to The City of Light. You will be treated like royalty at the Ecole Ritz Escoffier, the most luxurious address in the city of Paris. You will enjoy a custom-crafted class on classic French desserts at the famed Lenôtre. You will venture into a 400-year-old cave for a cheese and wine pairing class, igniting your palate and your spirit. You will also be treated to a Champagne tasting event like no other, complete with Champagne Sabering!
To celebrate this extraordinary one-time offer, my website will go PINK for the entire month of March!
Get ready for PINK- fun, food, and fashion just in time for spring.
Just a few of the precious ladies that have joined me for ATOP trips!
A Taste of Paris
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