It’s Time to Confess

Dear readers, I have a confession to make. I’ve fallen in love. Believe me, I didn’t expect it. I had my guard up. I knew what I needed to avoid, and so I traveled to Europe with a suitcase filled with vegan protein bars. Yes, I’m gluten and dairy intolerant but despite that fact, European food has captured my heart completely.

It was a love affair with eclairs.
We cooked breakfast each day.

As my family traveled to France, Italy and Austria for a five-week dream vacation, I feared I would find nothing to eat as we traveled. I was certain that a country like France, that has elevated the baguette to a national treasure would only serve “danger on a plate,” to a girl like me.

Anna was in love. These croissants were just out of the oven.

Although I dreamed of dishes such as Sole Meuniere, a fish dinner caressed in butter and the dish that sparked Julia child’s obsession with French food, I knew my insides would reject the notion that butter is heavenly.

However, France, Italy and Austria all provided food that delighted my taste buds, lacked hidden gluten and dairy, and offered freshness that made the flavors explode in my mouth. I’m in love and I feel that I will never be faithful to American food in my heart again.

I ate an endless amount of melon and prosciutto. This was in Rome.

I Found Something For You.

As I traveled around, I kept trying to find little treasures that I could share with you. I wish you could have joined me at the charming sidewalk cafes that we fell in love with. I’m sorry you were not there, but know you were there with me in my heart. So, I brought home a little something for six of you. I would have brought it for all of you, but the carry-on weight limit was 35 pounds, so blame the airlines.

Lunch in Cortona, Italy
Dinner in the Loire Valley, France.
Dinner in our yard in Monthou sur Cher, France.

Prize #1

How to Cook French Pastry

Since I fell in love with the food, the first item in this European prize is the yummy cookbook, How to Cook French Pastry – 50 Traditional French Recipes. I found this book in the giftshop at Versailles and I got two copies, one for me and one for you.

I love cookbooks with color photos and this one has a color photo for every recipe.

Prize #2

French Chocolate

Everyone loves chocolate so I was certain it should be one of the gifts. These 18 mini chocolate bars each have a photo of one of Paris’s iconic landmarks. This way you can enjoy your chocolate and dream of your trip to Paris.

Prize #3

French Macarons

Another well-known national treat are French Macarons. This box of three, will get you hooked and yearning for more.

Prize #4

Swiss Chocolate

We drove through Switzerland, the home of true chocolate. This next gift is a Toblerone bar, my husband’s favorite chocolate.

Prize #5

Provence Lavender

While in Provence, I snipped a bag full of lavender. I was going to make something with it but found sachets already waiting for one of you at the Bonnieux street market.  This bag of lavender is the aroma of Provence.

Prize #6

A Year in Provence

Finally, the book that started the dream, A Year in Provence, by Peter Mayle. This is the book that alerted me to the absolute need to travel to Provence. This bestseller is the account of Peter who realizes his dream of buying a 200-year-old stone farmhouse in Provence. Once you read this book, a trip to Provence will appear on your bucket-list.

Bonnieux in Provence France. The area Peter Mayle loved.
Bonnieux, France
The view from our Provence bedroom.

Enter to Win

Here is how you can win one of these European gifts.

  1. You must be subscribed to my blog. SUBSCRIBE HERE!
  2. You must share this blog post on your social media.
  3. Once you’ve subscribed and shared this blog, comment on any blog post in November and December with “Done” and what gift you’d like to win first, second, third, fourth, fifth and sixth.

It’s that easy! Prizes will be randomly drawn. The first name drawn will get their first choice, the second person their first choice that is still available and so on.


You can enter multiple times BUT you must share this blog for each entry.

Throughout November and December, I’ll continue to share posts about one of our amazing destinations. Of course, I’ll also be sharing holiday posts. Please let me know what type of content you enjoy seeing.

November is on our doorstep and the holidays are just around the corner. Share this post and maybe one of your holiday treats may just come from Europe.

Check it Out!

For more European fun, be sure to follow The Traveling Twins. Their blogs are filled with photos, travel tips and interesting facts.

Find them HERE.

The standard French breakfast. Travel with the Twins!

31 Responses

  1. Done! I just ate dinner and now you’ve got me hungry again!
    1. French Macarons–My Laura dreams of traveling to Paris and eating Macarons. . .though she’s never done either. LOL It would make a lovely Christmas gift for her, so if I win, shhhhhhh. . .
    2. Provence Lavender
    3. How to Cook French Pastry
    4. French Chocolate
    5. A Year in Provence
    6. Toblerone

    1. Thank you Bobbi! I hope Laura gets the macarons for Christmas, I also hope she doesn’t have to wait until she’s 58 to live the dream of getting to France. Tell her to keep dreaming.

    2. Done! That was fun! So exciting to hear about your travels through Europe, I really hope I get to do that. Someday too!

      Here is my ordering of the prizes! The cookbook would be a dream! Yum!


  2. What a fabulous adventure. The food has captured my heart too, and I haven’t tasted it yet. LOL
    I’d love to win
    French pastry book
    A year in Provence
    French Chocolate
    Swiss Chocolate

    Thanks for sharing your journey with us. Great photos. Fun to See your family.

    1. Thank you Jeanne! I couldn’t get over how fresh and yummy everything was there. The flavor just seemed to burst. Thanks for entering!

  3. 1. – “How to Cook French Pastries – 50 traditional recipes” / You know my lack of cooking skills!

    2. – 18 mini chocolate bars each with a photo of one of Paris’s iconic landmarks. / need to loose weight!

    3. – A box of French Macarons / No Austrian schnitzel?

    4. – A sachet of Provence lavender / Love!!

    5. – A Toblerone chocolate bar / Trying to loose weight!!

    6. – The book, “A Year in Provence” by Peter Mayle / A mystery?
    I actually want them all !!!!
    Love you!!!!

  4. Done:) Your post and pictures are lovely!!! I love the picture of you cutting lavender💜

  5. Thank you for sharing your journey. I want to take my film family to travel one day as well!!! You captured the heart of Europe just so beautifully in your photos. Thank you so much for sharing again

  6. Done! So fun to read about your trip!

    Order for prizes:
    Pastry book
    Provence book
    Mini chocolates

  7. I couldn’t figure out how to share your wonderful trip, but I want you to know that when I smell the lavender in my yard from my porch, I will think of you. If you ate chocolate in France, I hope it was as good as what our daughter brought back when she visited her husband who was stationed over seas in the Army. I would dearly love to see the famous tower and Cathedral in Paris. Thank you for all the sunshine you send in your posts. Lea was so good to connect me with you on the computer.

  8. “Done”
    I followed each photo of your family’s travel journey with JOY! I felt as though I was there with you!! What intriguing prizes you are offering. Here is my wish list if I am chosen.
    1. How to Cook French Pastry!
    2. A Year in Provence
    3. French Chocolate
    4. Provence Lavender
    5. Swiss Chocolate
    6. French Macaroons

  9. Done!

    It has always been a dream of mine to go to France. Hopefully, since the graduate program I’m thinking about requires a strong knowledge in French, that will give me an excuse to go there soon!

    Here’s the order of the prizes:
    French pastry book
    French Chocolate
    A year in Provence
    Swiss Chocolate

    1. Thanks Brandon. I wish we had you with us when we were there, your French would have come in handy. Let me know where you’re heading to France.

  10. Done! 😊

    Because I have the biggest sweet tooth imaginable, I’m going to have to list them this way…
    1. French Chocolate
    2. Swiss Chocolate
    3. French macaroons
    4. How to cook French Pastries
    5. Provence Lavender
    6. A year in Provence

    As always, your blogs are a delight to read, and I look forward to hearing about all of the new adventures that await you! ❤️

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