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Monday, November 10, 2008


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Regarde Madame! Les muscaris.....when you know longer want them, you will not be able to get rid of them! Those babies multiply and multiply...and because they are tiny and fragile, impossible to dig them all up. If you leave just on or two behind then those multiply and multiply again! Oh la la! You have an open field so they may be fine for you, but a pain in the rear in my flower bed!



“Don't worry about tomorrow, today has enough worries of its own”, but, the following French quote goes further -->
“Les soucis d'aujourd'hui sont les plaisanteries de demain. Rions-en donc tout de suite”.(Henri Béraud)”......
Lesson in optimism? How many times do we say: “I can laugh about it now.... , but at the time, I was ever so worried”!... I couldn't sleep... Well, laughing about our worries, at the time they worry us, as suggested in "Rions-en tout de suite" doesn't come easily for everyone...

I like the phrase “Sans souci” given to a residence... I am thinking about the Palace and Park of Frederick the Great, King of Prussia, at Potsdam, near Berlin, a good example of Rococo architecture and landscaping. Frederick the Great (1712-1786) was the "philosopher" of “Sans Souci”.
There are some “Sans souci” castles, hotels, “Sans souci” restaurants... and some people are happy to give the name “sans souci” to their “free and easy” Holiday homes or little cottage!

OK, Monsieur Delhomme didn't expect to see marigolds on your lawn, but it must look quite nice! By the way, hasn't Monsieur Delhomme got any flowers in his garden (in between his rows of veg and strawberries?
I don't dare telling you how many (daffodil) bulbs I bought in October (but haven't managed to plant yet, because of the very bad weather!)

Sylvie, Rappahannock Cook & Kitchen Gardener

You go Kristin! If you like flowers then plant them, they are good for the heart and the spirit. In my old garden, I had planted ribbons of muscari. I intend to do it here in my new gardens. They are so wonderful in April.

In time, if you are interested in fruit & vegetables, you'll learn about them, and you'll plant them too. Then it's good for the heart, the spirit and the body!

Start small with just a few plants or seeds. In your beautiful Provence, you can grow salad greens throughout the winter. Such a pleasure to be able to harvest your salad minutes before eating it.

But I do want to offer a correction of your translation of souci, the flower. It's calendula (species Calendula), also known as Pot Marigold. At least in the US, marigold refers to the species Tagetes, which is known in French as Oeuillet D'Inde. Although the colors are similar, the plants belong to two different botanical family and look different. The Calendula originates from the Mediterranean basin, the Tagetes from the Americas. I am sure Mr. Farjon can tell you about its medicinal properties.



Peggy B

I live in north Scottsdale, AZ and there's a French restaurant in the next town called Sans Souci. The name of the town is Carefree. I just got it!

Linda Roll

le cadet de mes soucis -- the least of my worries.


Muscari and Snowdrops are the first flowers of spring around here. Every year the muscari seem to spread some more and every year the neighbors comment on how cheerful they look.


OH COMME CHARMANTE!!!!! et il est tres beau ;) bz, L


There's another flower of Autumn, the humble Flanders Poppy, special international symbol of remembrance of The Great War.

Tomorrow, France will celebrate Armistice Day, 90th year anniversary.

The poppy of wartime remembrance is the red corn poppy, Papaver rhoeas, a common weed of Europe. The red poppy was one of the few plants that grew on the Western Front; it's seeds wait patiently for years, for disturbance and cool weather - conditions well met in the soil of intensively-shelled battlefields of France.

World War I catalyzed important technological innovations that changed forever the patterns of daily life and urban landscape - an era we call 'The Modern Age'.

The battlefields of France continue to disgorge an ungodly crop: soldierly remains, rusting guns, spent and still-dangerous live munitions, and personal effluvia of military life in the trenches.

It is good to think on the significance of the humble red poppy and all that it portends, when lives and lands are permanently altered through disturbance.


There is an entire suburb in Sydney, Australia named "Sans Souci" which in practice is pronounced "SAN-soozi" or "SAN-soossi". Sans Souci took its name from a grand house built on Rocky Point Road on land bought in 1853, by Thomas Holt (1811-1888), a wood merchant and politician, for his German wife. It was named after Sanssouci in Potsdam, Germany, the summer palace of Frederick the Great, King of Prussia.

"No worries" is a very Australian expression these days ... "Thank you very much." "No worries," is usually the reply.

I enjoy these French words and vignettes very much, although I have no real plans for studying French in a structured way. the spelling put me off, as a child, and I learned Latin, and later Italian, instead. Now, however, I have a distinct fondness for france and the French, and am happy to learn a word or two by osmosis, but the cultural understandings are what draw me back throughout my busy day. Thank you very much!

Fred Caswell

Chere Amie,
As you do my wife, Nancy, does flowers and I the edibles. Of course, plant your fancies, and if you like berries then blackberries and strawberries will give you some flowers and beautify your desserts and seduce your palate with their scrumptious tastes. Also, once planted, they spread profusely and need to be controlled.

Our blackberries came with the house and defend their offspring with nasty briers. They are so delicious I reach for all the ripe fruit and deal with the petits wounds for many days.

Blueberries are great, too, and with these fruits you have fierce competition from les oiseaux,

I have the sense that you knew all this and my comments are superfluous attempts to boost your opinion of me. Je suis imparfait.


When I was a kid I lived in the Sydney (Australian) suburb of Sans Souci. We called it 'sanz sooshi'.

While popular thought points to the namesake of Fred the Great's palace, the suburb was actually an ode to Colonel Jean-Baptist Sans Souci.


Planting flowers is so hopeful and when they come up in the spring, you'll be so glad you did the work now! My favorites here in Northern NY are the crocus, because they're so hardy and come back year after year, if the deer don't eat them. I'm happy to say that even though I taught for a long time and go to France every year, I'm still learning from you. My new word for today was restanque. Your blog is really good. Merci. and thanks for the photos you choose to illustrate your stories.


Thank you to the person who posted about the poppy. I followed the link and read the short history. It is very interesting and moving. I remember reading the poem "In Flanders Fields" as a child and selling poppies made by disabled veterans. Lately when I ask students about the poem, they don't seem to recognize it, sadly. It was written during what was at the time called the "War to End all wars". We wish! Tomorrow is Veterans' Day here in the USA and we all have much to be grateful for to all of our veterans, past and present.

frenchclass (Martine)

Great word Kristine!

'Sans Souci' is also the name of a suburb in Sydney (Australia)I always like to teach "no worries' which is 'pas de souci' in French because it is a word which is already familiar to my students therefor easy to remember.

'souci' is also a flower name also known as 'Calendula'

I've got to go now'Il faut que j'y aille' is the most popular way to say 'I must go now' notice the use of the Subjunctif of Aller.

I love explaining the French subjunctif because I make it completely comprehensible to all my students beginners like advanced!

Il faut que j'y aille maintenant car j'ai une classe!

Merci et à bientôt!

Jan H

It is true...the grape hyacinths may take over your garden. I now dig them up to make room for other plants...bonne chance!


I can't believe Monsieur is going to be 89. He looks fantastic! I wonder if he was as handsome in his younger days as he is now?! ;o

Michael Lee

What a fantastic blog! I've already used one of the words in daily use today! Amazingly good, keep up the work...

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