Saturday, November 17, 2012

Golden Key International Honor Society

Today was a great day!  I was inducted into George Mason University's chapter of the Golden Key International Honor society.  My sister Judy and my daughter Aimee were there to cheer me on!  Judy was the photographer.  I'm sure Mom and Dad were smiling from heaven and glad that I was still trying to accomplish things in life.  I'm very happy to be a graduate student studying linguistics!!

Friday, August 26, 2011

A Mes Professeurs de Français!!

M. Vincent Guillemard - Professeur du cours avancé à l'Institute Catholique

M. Pierre Espagnon - Professeur d'Atlier de cinéma français à l'Institut Catholique

Mon prof M. Beck et moi!

Je viens de revenir de la France et j'ai pris plus de 5000 photos!! Je voudrais dédier ce blogue à mes professeurs parce que j'ai vu beaucoup de choses que j'avais étudié dans mes cours de français! For those of you who don't speak French, I'm dedicating this blog to my French professors who taught me so many things that I saw while in France this summer. I hope I haven't made too many errors in French grammar!! Merci beaucoup!!

Pour Mme. Duke qui est décédée

Mme. Duke étaient mon professeur au lycée et m'a enseigné pendant deux de quatre ans de français. Grâce à elle, je sais la chanson Sur la pont d'Avignon. Dans cette vidéo je danse et chante la chanson sur le vrai pont d'Avignon!

Pour Mme. Laura Franklin!

Merci! Vous m'encouragiez dans tous les cours de français à NOVA. Grâce à vous, je continue à suivre les cours de français et m'a donné une meilleure base de grammaire! Les photos du Jardin du Luxembourg sont pour vous. Vive Paris in Action!!

Pour Mme. Pascale De Souza

Merci! Pendant mon voyage en France, je voyais beaucoup de panneaux que nous étudions dans notre cours de traduction. Aussi, le cours d'identités francophones m'aidais pendant mon cours avancé à l'Institute Catholique à Paris. Le cours de traduction avec le vocabulaire, l'argot et les proverbes m'aidaient beaucoup pendant ma visite en France! Pendant mes séjours aux villes de la France, j'ai pris des photos pour vos présentations!!
Pour M. Gérard Beck

Merci, merci pour un voyage merveilleux!! Les quatres semaines à Paris étaient magnifiques!! Grâce à vous, j'aime l'histoire de France, j'aime des cathédrales avec des arc-boutants, j'aime les chateaux de la Loire, j'aime le sud de la France, j'aime tout!! J'ai pris beaucoup de photos des cathédrales à Paris, à Reims, à Nancy, en Avignon - presque partout!! Je voyais les choses que nous avions discuté dans le cours de l'histoire, la culture et la littérature du Moyen Age au XVIIIe siècle! Mon prof dans ma classe avancée à l'Institute Catholique pensait que j'étais très intelligente parce que j'ai su que les Gaullois ont inventé le savon!! J'étais aussi contente de pourvoir réciter Le Corbeau et le renard pour M. Guillemard. Merci, merci encore!!Pour Mme. Janine Ricouart

Merci! Je suis allée au Cimitière Père Lachaise et au Cimitière de Montparnasse pour voir les tombes des écrivains du XIXe et XXe siècles. Grâce à vous, j'étais très contente dans ma classe avancée à l'Institute Catholique parce que j'ai su toutes les définitions pour les expressions stylistiques et des autres termes comme l'autonomase, la lilote, l'alexandrin, l'assonance, etc. J'ai une appréciation pour ces écrivains français!!
Pour Mlle. Dorothée Polanz

Merci! Grâce à vous, je sais beaucoup d'information sur les affaires français. J'utilisais beaucoup les distributeurs de billets de BNP Parisbas. Merci pour l'information des banques françaises parce que j'avais besoin de ça quand j'ai loué le gîte en Provence. J'ai pris des photos des banques en France pour vous et ici c'est la Caisse d'Epargne!!

Friday, July 8, 2011

Je suis à Paris

I finally have access to the Internet and can start my blog. I've been here for two weeks today and have had some interesting adventures. The first was getting from the airport to the hotel. I was given a free number to use to contact City Shuttle using France Telecom, but I couldn't get it to work until an English lady tried. I was so excited to find the man driving the shuttle to take me to Paris! Here's a picture down the street from my hotel near the Bastille.

Once in Paris, we started driving down la Rue de Charonne; and when I saw some of the hotels, I was praying they weren't mine. Well, mine did look a little nicer, but it was nothing to brag about - except the location, which was great. Here is a picture of my single room. The French don't know about "climatisation" - air conditioning. Fortunately, there was a big window (no screens), but it was on the street which had loads of cafes (I can't use the accent marks for some reason - darn!) so it was noisy until the wee hours of the morning. Il fait tres chaud samedi et dimanche! It was very hot on Ssaturday and Sunday - even Monday. I thought I was going to roast to death. However, it cooled down and there was a nice breeze the rest of the week. The first day was a lazy one because I hadn't really gotten any sleep on the plane. Saturday, my Parisian friend Olivier came to the hotel and brought the box I had mailed with all my protein powder. He took me to the Orange store to buy a French cell phone (needed for class) and then to the Gare de Lyon (one of the train stations) to make my train reservations to go to Nancy and Avignon. We took the subway (metro) everywhere and I was glad he knew where we were going, but it's not really too difficult. There a beaucoup de lignes, but there are good signs. We then went to Notre Dame. Unfortunately, it was closed for some reason. We walked along the Seine waiting for the "jardin" to open so we could take some pictures. From there we decided to eat lunch so I had a crepe avec jambon, fromage et champignons. It probably had too many carbs, but I had been walking and standing forever so I figured I deserved it. From there we went to the Cimitiere Pere Lachaise where a lot of famous French people like Colette and Balzac are buried. There are some other famous people buried there like Jim Morrison and Oscar Wilde. Unfortunately, we didn't go in the gate where they distributed the maps so we didn't find too many. The place was completely crowded with tombs and mausoleums that were very old. It didn't look like anyone takes much care of the area. I'm hoping to go back to see some of the famous tombs. Here's Balzac - one of the authors we had to read this year in French 371.
When we returned to the Place de la Bastille, it was super crowded and then Olivier realized that there was a gay pride event going on. It was definitely a site. I saw a lot of people with feather wings, different color hair, and very different attire. I also saw one fellow who had a sticker on that indicated he was a homophobe. Nervy, I guess. We returned to the hotel without indicent and Olivier left. I was ready to go to bed!! Here's the top of the Bastille monument.
On Sunday, I found my way by metro to the paroisse de Paris of my church - the Church of Jesus Christ des Saints de Dernier Jours. I was so excited to go to a church service totally in French. It was nice to sing the "cantiques en francais" (hymns in French) and to listen to the lessons and have sacrament in another language. And ... I understood!! Saturday afternoon, I just relaxed and watched some French TV.

Monday was an exciting day. I took a tour with Cityrama to Mont Saint Michel - a dream come true for me. We traveled from Paris into the region of Normandy which was a flat patchwork of greens and browns - fields of green corn stalks and wheat - with lots of cows. Normandy is known for its dairy products and is the home of Camembert cheese. A woman made it from brie. We stopped in a small town called Bevron en Auge which is famous for its apple juice, cider, and a type of wine made from apples and pears. I drank a glass of cold apple juice which was delicious.
From there we continued our journey to Mont Saint Michel. We stopped at Le Relais de Mont Saint Michel for lunch and had salmon which was very tasty. I was so disapapointed I couldn't eat the cheesecake that was for dessert! Finally, we could see the abbey from the terrace of the restaurant. It was a cloudy and very overcast day, and I couldn't get my polarizer on the correct lens so many of my photos had to be adjusted. But ... my dream to see this famous place had finally come true! I knew there would be stairs - that's why I had to lose weight to come - but Paris' metro stairs are nothing compared to the stairs we had to climb at the abbey. I'm so glad I made it all the way!!! I couldn't believe how many pictures I took. Unfortunately, it's not furnished well, but there is a city on this mall island. There are two other islands near this one - one of which served as a prison where Fouquet, one of Louis XIV's treasurers, was sent.

We got back late that night, but it doesn't get dark here until 10 pm, which makes one feel like it's much earlier. The CItyrama office is near the Tuilleries. When we got off the bus, I realized that there was a gigantic ferris wheel there so, of course, I had to take some pictures before getting on the metro and heading back to the hotel to collaps! Here's a picture of the ferris wheel which was lighted with the status of Jeane d'Arc in the front.
All in all the first three days in Paris and Normandy were a success!

Thursday, March 31, 2011

Spring Has Sprung in DC!

This is the most beautiful time of the year in Washington. When you drive into the city over the 14th Street Bridge, you can see all the cherry blossom trees in full bloom. I went on a Photo Safari Tuesday morning and wanted to share some of my photos - ones taken with my new Nikon D90 camera!! The only bad part of this was having to be at the Tidal Basin at 6:15 am and having to park 1 mile from the meeting point. Needless to say, I didn't get there in time. Here are some pictures of just the blooms. I found out during the shoot that the idea for the trees came from a woman photographer who had been to Japan and taken pictures of the trees. She had tried for many years to get the National Park Service to do something like this. It wasn't until she talked to Mrs. Taft, wife of the President, that something was accomplished. The city of Tokyo gave the tress to the US in 1912. The first tree was planted by Mrs. Taft and the second was planted by the wife of the Japanese ambassador. Some of the pictures show older trees - you can tell because they are so gnarly. Some of the shapes of the trees are very interesting. One is called the "Maid of the Blossoms." The tree looks like a woman throwing the blossoms backward over her head into the basin. Here are a few views of her. Another lady, Jean, her daughter, and I finally met the group near to the paddle boats. There were many photographers around - not just the ones with our group. Ohio Drive filled up quickly with cars. I took about 250 pictures in the two hours we were there. I like so many of the pictures, I might just make a Creative Memories book just for the Cherry Blossoms! We walked from near the paddle boats around the basin to the Jefferson Memorial and continued on to the Franklin Delano Roosevelt Memorial. As we journeyed around, we almost froze to death. After a few nice days of warmer weather, Old Man Winter tried to come back! The sky cleared and turned a beautiful blue while the sun rose. The trees were in full bloom so everything was just beautiful. Here are some pictures taken while walking around the Tidal Basin.
One of my favorite memorials is the Jefferson. It's is modeled after the Pantheon in Rome which was also Jefferson's model for his home in Charlottesville, VA - Monticello. The architect was John Russell Pope who also designed the National Art Gallery. Even though Jefferson was the main writer of the Declaration of Independence and the third President of the United States, he always said his main accomplishment was founding the University of Virginia, which also has a building like the memorial. The cornerstone was laid by President Franklin Roosevelt on November 15, 1939. It was dedicated in 1943. Roosevelt was instrumental in the development and completion of the memorial. He wanted to be able to see it from the White House so he had all the trees cut down to make sure it was visible. In one of the pictures taken from the memorial, you can see the White House and the open space.

Rudolph Evans was the sculpture for the statue of Jefferson, which looks out between the columns toward the White House. The statue is 19 feet tall and weighs five tons. Around the inside of the memorial are quotations from speeches made by Jefferson. I love taking pictures of the inside of domes - as you can see! When exiting the memorial, some helicopters flew by so I caught an image!
We continued on the path as the sun rose. Unfortunately, my polarizing filter didn't fit, but I continued taking more and more pictures. Here are some photos of the gnarly trees. Hope you enjoyed the Photo Safair and the cherry blossoms as much as I did!!