Our summer vacation commenced on July 4 as we dashed out the door not looking back and remembering to bring Lou’s milk cup, which was left to fester in a sealed up apartment enveloped in full blazing NYC summer heat. We left Harlem behind for Los Angeles pastures including immediate cocktails and barbecued kalbi. It’s only in the summer that you work to keep yourself busy with such leisurely activities – making peach cobbler due to an abundance of mom’s garden grown peaches, swimming at the pool for a number of reasons and figuring out what the night’s drink will be to go with whatever’s being grilled. Lou has discovered the beauty of having space, a backyard and a vehicle. Staying with my parents is always (usually, no, for the most part 😉 ) a delight and there is no place like home like their backyard next to the hot grill and fire pit going on a 7th s’more.

                        My Gramps died on June 29, 2012 and my sister and I will always remember and laugh about how he used to take us to Fun Factory giving us $20 each for tokens and sitting for hours at the machine where you put the token in at the top hoping it will slide down strategically into the pile pushing tokens off the edge of the cliff, and how he used to take us shopping at Pearlridge mall or Ala Moana and hang outside the store smoking several of his Capri Slims, and how he would pay me $20 to either wash his car or sweep the 7-10 rocks that made their way on the sidewalk back to where they came from, and of course that one time when he took my neighborhood buddies and I, piled into the trunk of his white Mazda pickup, to Sports Authority so we could cash in a jar of pennies for a street hockey related item. He was always there for us whether we needed a ride somewhere or if the shaved ice truck made a spontaneous stop or if we needed a reminder that we needed to "study hard now." I'm glad this picture was taken and that we were able to see him one last time in January.

It’s incredible how having a kid makes time go by so quickly. One moment you’re able to bring them to a matinee since all they do is breastfeed and sleep and the next thing you know they are running around a zoo shouting “gogogo” on the search for “Babar.” Lou had a weekend full of festivities in Seattle including 2 candle blowings and her first trip to the zoo. She partied hard (infinite toys at Luc’s house + sugar, no wait that was me + no napping) with her friends Luc, Adam and Max on Friday, hung out at Aunty Dana’s on Saturday night and observed an Orangutan hiding himself in a burlap bag at Woodland Park Zoo in Fremont on Sunday. Look out Papa, she’s growing (tall)!

Enjoying a sunny day in Seattle is finely celebrated by going to the beach. The water may be still be frigid in June but when the sun comes out, it’s GLORIOUS! Couple that with a sautĂ©ed prawn, garlic tapenade and caramelized onion sandwich from nearby Caribbean food outpost Paseo and you’ve got yourself a winning day.

Paseo Caribbean Restaurant – Ballard
6226 Seaview Ave NW

What better way to celebrate Father’s Day then to put Lou to sleep in the stroller before heading to Le Pichet in downtown Seattle for a generous plate of Charcuterie, baguette, house smoked salmon with a spiced yogurt bulgur salad and several glasses of rosĂ©. It’s not everyday you please a French person with French food in America and the chicken liver terrine, pork rillettes, pork pĂątĂ©, beef tongue and saucisse lyonnaise certainly did their tricks this afternoon. It was all so delicious and Lou gave us a break all through lunch up until we made it to the park.

There is something so beautiful about the way Lou smiles when she hears Olivier getting home from work. She squeals with delight for papa and runs to him before giving him the tightest hug ever and nestles her little head into his neck. They have such a special bond and it’s amazing to see, especially the way she cradles his head and plays with his face when he carries her on his shoulders or the way they spoon while sneaking in more rest on a weekend morning. Olivier is incredibly gentle, loving and patient and It’s not enough just to say thank you on just today (hope the charcuterie helped)! Tchin Tchin to our amazing papa!

Street Photographer & Scourer Extraordinaire. Champion Lou Watcher & Wrangler. Smuggler of Champagne and a kilo of Beaufort cheese. From NYC to Seattle and back, we caught up with Maman and had great times. She met a few of my family members, picnicked on the High Line, took the ferry to Chez Ikea, went down to the 9/11 memorial (by herself), rode on a boat, barbecued, ate bagels and lots of PB&J and watched some live living room salsa dancing. Olivier and I even got to see a bunch of movies and have a couple of nights on the town, yes! Merci encore and we’ll miss you terriblement xo