The Chinese Lanterns festival by night/Le festival des lanternes chinoises en nocturne

As promised, here is a bunch of photos – and most spectacular version at night – of the first UK Chinese Lanterns festival which is currently taking place at Chiswick House and Gardens. ps: Obviously, if you are planning to go, it might be worth not looking at my photos as I wouldn’t want to spoil the surprise for you.

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The Robin cafe/ Le café Rouge-Gorge

I don’t know about you but I am a bit tired of all those coffee chains. Don’t get me wrong, they are brilliant, you can find them in every corner of the city and everywhere you go, they serve pretty good coffee and a selection of teas and are great informal places to meet people. But I have always loved independent cafes. In Paris where I am from it’s still possible to find these and thankfully they are still plenty around London too and many other cities and they are to be celebrated!

Je ne sais pas si c’est vous êtes comme moi, mais je suis un peu las de toutes ces chaines de cafés. C’est vrai qu’elles dépannent dans bon nombre de situations, surtout qu’on peut presque en trouver a chaque coin de ville et que ce sont des endroits très pratiques et informels pour retrouver des gens ou faire une pause. Toutefois j’ai toujours été une grande fan de cafés indépendants qui ont nettement plus de charme et d’atmosphère. A Paris, ma ville d’origine, il y a encore bon nombre de ces cafés et heureusement il y en a aussi encore a Londres et d’autres villes. Mais il faut davantage les mettre a l’honneur!

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I would like to share with you my find of a wonderful little cafe near us in Southwest London

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Chinese Lanterns Festival/Les festival des lanternes chinoises

A mostly photography based post for today and on a Monday for a change as I just wouldn’t want you to miss on a cool event: The UK’s first Chinese Lantern festival taking place at Chiswick House and Gardens. I spotted it a while ago on Facebook and completely forgot about it until I got an email from my son’s teacher (they are currently studying China and the Chinese New Year at school) who reminded me just in time about it!

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A photo exhibition and THAT incredible smile/Une expo photo et CE sourire éblouissant

There are certain exhibitions I love going year after year. I always trot to the Wildlife Photographer of the Year exhibition with my pal Julie which rarely disappoints. But I love portrait photography and the Taylor Wessing Portrait Exhibition always calls my attention. Looking at a face and feeling the emotions, the story behind the face can be truly inspirational at times.

This year, I was absolutely gobsmacked by one of the photos.

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The Smarties are back/Le grand retour des smarties

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I don’t know why, I always thought Smarties were sweets that only French kids had. It turns out I was wrong. Here in the UK the choice of sweets is pretty big but smarties are still fairly popular.

It was the turn of Reception (1st year at school here in the UK) mums to bake for their annual ‘Cake sale’ at school the other week.

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