I haven't posted in far too long.  I have a bevy of excuses:  I was in Paris, with my wonderful neighbors, who invited me to be their zany companion for a week.  They housed me, fed me and proved to be the very best travel companions (and neighbors for that matter).  When I returned, I jumped into a Better Homes and Gardens photo shoot at Freegrace.   Nancy Hopkins, senior food editor, and her amazing team camped out for a little less than a week, creating a holiday atmosphere while I baked winter inspired treats.

In the meantime, the gardens won't wait on me and Ray captured the hops harvest (Mama supervised).  The sugar pumpkins are threatening to ripen and I've got a sneaking suspicion that a homebrew Pumpkin ale isn't far behind.  The zucchini is taking over, the tomatoes are bumper, the potatoes need digging up.  After the dirty work, we'll get a visit from The Chew to capture some Freegrace baking after Labor Day and then off to LA to visit with my baking friends on The Talk on the 23rd and then to San Francisco to judge cakes and candies for Living Well t.v.  All the while, I'm writing and recipe testing away on the new book. 

I hope your summer was as magical as mine. 

 Instead of giving you an even wordier recap, I'm going to post a ton of pictures.  Starting with the hops harvest...

One of our first Paris pitstop:  Pierre Hermé macaron!

Gardens in Versaille

The Paris Catacombes.  An adventure under the city.

The first and still the best superstar.

Colorova.  Wonderful pastries and amazing brunch.  

The kitchen inside the Musée Nissim de Camondo

The best the world.

Had to capture the Versailles gardeners sculpting the hedges.  They have templates!  Of course they do!

The china cabinet in Marie Antoinette's Petit Trianon.  I want.

The country village Marie Antoinette created so that she could play at being a "peasant" with her pals.  It was magical.

The potager gardens in M.A.'s village.  

Had to visit with the resident rooster and shy bunnies.

And of course I paid my respects to the ducks and geese.  Check out that billy goat on the wall.

E. Dehillerin is the holy ground of pastry and restaurant supply in Paris.  But take the time to walk around the Les Halles area to take in an endless supply of more modern restaurant supply shops.  I did some damage.

Back home to take some holiday pictures.  

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