Blog Widget by LinkWithin

« Say "six pack abs" and the French gutbuster! | Main | Bonjour. It's good to be back! »

Thursday, October 31, 2013


Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.


Enjoy this time off, I hope you recharge those batteries!

Audrey Wilson

Bon voyage !! I also love photography, but tend to do things or animals , birds & insects.
I know what you mean though , I am always shy about asking if i may photograph people.
I must take a leaf from your book !

Linda R.

We could be two peas in a pod when it comes to photography (including favorite subject matter) and love of all things French. Probably everyone else feels the same since they are reading your stories. Goethe's quote is a favorite - your story will inspire me to be more open in my approach. Enjoy your time with family and self.


Je préfère photographier les gens. J'aime la variété des expressions que on peut voir dans la même personne. Aussi je trouve très intéressant la réaction des sujets au fait d'être photographié.

Kate O'Kula

Dear Kristin,
Yes! I recently asked a woman for her permission... she was holding a "Rhody Red" chicken (the Rhode Island state bird) in her arms at a Johnny Cake Festival on a gorgeous autumn day. I got the shot with an American flag wafting just behind her. Kind of Norman Rockwellian. I wanted to post it here but don't know how. Still learning. Enjoy your month. I'm planning a similar hiatus in Mexico this winter, getting away from the New England blah time, recharging and writing. Blessings to you!

Donna Grieder

Enjoy your time away, Kristin.It will pass quickly and we will be here when you return, revitalized. You have inspired me to use this month in some yet-to-be-determined wise way, too.

Leonard Quilty

A beautiful piece of writing, Kristin! Enjoy your time off.


Dear Kristin,

I will miss your wonderful stories, but am happy you are taking this time for yourself. Thank you for today's lovely words of inspiration. They really struck a chord,

a decembre,

Betty Doolittle Tuininga

Dear Kristin,
You have developed such a wonderful eye for photography. I think you just need to be more confident about your skills!

I really love to photograph both people and things. Nature can be such a willing and interesting subject...and ever changing, but on the other hand, people can so unique and expressive. My camera, with at least one lens is almost always with me in my sack. I never know when an interesting subject will appear. I often use photos for design and decorating purpose, so I need to be prepared.

If I am taking photos of "people" where they may be reproduced publicly I get a signed release form which helps to cover the use of the image and any residuals made from the use of image. Although it does seem that Europeans seem to be less stressed about these things then we Americans.I also love the historical architecture in the City where I live, but I recently learned that people don't want you taking pictures of their homes,(I was doing a series on old windows) because they are afraid that you are "casing the joint". I think we must have to many lawyers!

Enjoy your trip and your time away from writing. Rest, relax, enjoy. Take lots of wonderful photographs.

Namaste, bj

Pamela Blair

I'm sure you made Janice's day, just as she made yours. Thanks for doing these blogs. I love your writing and photography--especially your photography of buildings, windows, mailboxes, laundry drying, etc. They say as much about the people who have them as a photo of the person, I think. I'll miss reading your blogs, but understand and certainly don't expect any answers when I post a comment. Each morning, when I read one of your blog, it makes my day!

Marie D

I will miss your thoughtful posts and look forward to reading more when you return after your well-deserved break!

I, too have a hard time photographing people, and have been scowled at, yelled at, chastised, etc. For the most part, though, people seem delighted at being noticed, for being perceived by someone as photograph-worthy, and "captured." I do not usually ask first - because I don't want to ruin the mood that captured my eye in the first place... but that's a sensitive line to cross (or not cross), and we all need to approach it in a way that works for us.

Your photographs are always beautiful!

Gayle Markow

Dear Kristin, Brava on your new insight! I too got discouraged from photographing people (my delight also) when I was 21, traveling in Morocco, and found the women very beautiful and mysterious, but completely unreceptive to being photographed. My experience there led me to give up photographing people. It Does take courage! I didn't have it. A willingness to follow your passion even against the odds. I love your honesty and writing. Which also takes courage. Showing us your vulnerability takes courage too. LIfe is amazing and arduous. You are stronger than you know. (or maybe you know). And appreciated! Have a wonderful sabbatical.

Marcia Douglas

I love photographing things, objects but would like to break out of my shy shell and photograph people. I've been writing on my blog for about a year now and have photos on it, but few people in my pics unless it's a crowd. You give me courage! :-)

Ally Davis

Bravo Kristin! Amusez-vous bien pendant votre mois sabbatique!

Susan Elliker

Dear Kristin, Thank you for your stories about courage, discovering it, having it, using it! I agree with Marcia; you give me courage, too. Have a lovely vacation from blogging. We'll be here when you return :-)



I enjoy pictures of scenery. But some time ago, I was looking through pictures that used to be my grandmother's. There were family members I know, then there were many of people I did not know. I thought about how each photo could tell a story. I thought maybe I could write a story about the people in each photo. They are pictures during my grandmother's youth, and adult years, of family, and the many friends she had. I wish she was still here, not only because I miss her, but because I would love to hear her stories of those people. Have a wonderful time off! I hope you find even more joy from the photos you take as you expand on what you take.

Herm in Phoenix, AZ

Salut Kristin,

Profiter du temps de pause de blogging.

The words that Jules added to a picture of us she sent to me seem to fit your meeting with Janice……“Thank you, God, for moments like this.”

À bientôt


I will miss your writing this next month. Yours is the first e-mail I always read. Enjoy the time unplugged.


Thank you very much for this very inspiring story. I do enjoy all of them as I would a candy! I find them in the evening, when I come back from work and I savour them always, always a treat!! Of course I'll miss all your wonterful stories, but... do enjoy this November break, you deserve it!!! Take care & Happy Halloween to you all.

Cheryl in STL

I loved your post this morning---I'm pretty shy about photographing people, too. Maybe I'll learn to step out of my comfort zone and be a bit braver. Most of all, enjoy and savor the time away from your blog! Brava for taking it!

Pauline Kneebone

Dear Kristin,
Many thanks for your wonderful stories, photos and for sharing your life with us, your emails are truly delightful and inspirational. I have purchased two of your books so look forward to a month of reading. Until December !take care and enjoy your special time.. Pauline, Perth, Australia.

susan essex

Kirstin...I am an old Francophile who has enjoyed your books, your blog, and your very much. You have lived the dream that I didn't. I wanted so much to live in France, but wasn't bold enough. Now, at 70, I can live vicariously through your writings and pictures. I have loved the pictures of the culture...both the places and the people. They have taken me back to the France I loved from years ago. Thank you. Have a wonderful hiatus!


You don't have to choose--photograph people in interesting places and contexts, as you did with Janice. this photo requires that table and there are interesting little details making us wonder about more stories. Why no dogs? are the skulls for halloween? do they have anything to do with Janice? those are rhetorical questions by the way! Enjoy your sabbatical and cruise! and bring back some stories...

Eileen deCamp

Enjoy your time off Kristin! I'm sure you will come back with lots of great photos! I love photos of people but I seem to gravitate more towards nature photography. When we were in Europe this summer I asked a couple of reenactors at a castle in Germany if I could take their photo in German. The man said, "sure and thanks for asking". Someone in our group was just taking pictures as if they were part of the scenery without asking.


Congratulations and a great photo too! Enjoy your sabbatical. Bissous to Jean-Marc.

Linda C.

I agree with gary! Your photos have always added so much to your writing. I always wondered why you wrote about people (and dogs) but photographed mainly buildings and scenery. Were all the towns in Provence deserted?! If you can figure out how to take and publish neat photos like that of Janice, without offending anyone or getting in trouble, more power to you!

PS Enjoy your sabbatical! Maybe I can think of something cool and creative to do while you are off-line!


Will miss your stories but glad you are taking care of yourself! Enjoy the month. It will fly by.

MJH DesignArts

Hi Kristin, Have a wonderful November vacation. You will be missed, but we do need to tend our gardens. Thank you for all of your post of the past year.


Enjoy your time. Not time off, rather Time given; Time taken!
As for photos, I take few of people other than family, as I don't think I do them very well. I do enjoy taking pictures of architecture. At least it stays still!:-)

Steve & Maxine

Excellent post, Kristin. Wondering who will be counting the days until December with more anticipation - your faithful readers waiting for your next post - or you waiting to create your next post...

Leslie NYC

Check out a video on YouTube called "Touching Strangers". It's about a photographer who asks strangers to pose together in NYC. Very moving. And BOLD!


Hi dear Kristi,
You have written(and photographed)many wonderful
subjects,but today's post is truly one of your finest.You wrapped yourself around all of our hearts in giving us courage(and indspiration)to make a real effort to overcome our own inhibitions ....and follow a dream.THANK YOU!
Wishing you blessings and happines always AND
a restful glorious vacation!
Love, Natalia. xo

Janine Cortell

Many years ago when I used to take my students to France, I would take pictures of store fronts to use in a slide show to teach students the names of different shops and what a shopper could find in each one. On a particular day I saw a beautiful Boucherie.
as I started to take the photo of the sign the butcher came running out to find out why I was taking a photo of his shop. When I explained to him that his shop window was the most beautiful I had seen he smiled and gave me permission to shoot the photo, We then chatted for a while and I told him I would send him a copy at which point he asked if I could take one more photo with him in it.I told this story to students for many years and told them to always ask permission before taking the picture.



I LOVE YOU - FOREVER... You are the greatest storyteller, so happy you are in my life.



A. Moreau

Have a great month off!! Looking forward to stories of the cruise!

John Carr

Bon repos Kristi, profitez en bien!

Faye Stampe, Gleneden Beach, OR

Bonjour Kristin,

I loved this post - esp about courage -- we all need it huh? I love the 2 artists you met. They are both inspiring.

Have a wonderful time in Nov. and relax & recharge! We will be waiting for your return.

Stay well!

Nancy, San Antonio, Texas

Have a wonderful time. Thank you for this thought provoking parting gift. Bon voyage! N

Sandy Maberly

Everyone needs to take time off now and then! You are so diligent with FWAD, you amaze me! Now, relax, catch your breath, enjoy your family and most of all take that much needed time alone FOR YOU! We'll be here when you return.

Kristin Espinasse

I am especially touched by your *We will be here when you return* messages. Thank you so much! 

Mom, what a wonderful note!


Have a wonderful break Kristin, I am a new reader and really enjoy your stories and posts. I have recently started on a weekly series on my blog,transcribing Daily Elle style 'gossips' from youtube A la Mode, A la vie, with plenty of French idioms as well as tips. I hope you and other francophiles will stop by and check it out. I'd love to hear your comments, corrections etc.. Merci beaucoup!

BiTi (trying to be bold :))


I always wanted to take pics of people, I got my nerve up to ask a few at the halloween parade this year!

PS. It's Janis Joplin, not Janice Joplin! :-)

Joan Simon

People! Those are the only ones I like! I can't believe you asked- and thank you for asking!

There are many reasons for this, on many levels, but sometimes I'm just struck by how much God loves them. And then I'm more able to believe He loves me,too.:)

See you in a week.

Sherry in Kentucky

Boldness has genius, power and magic in it. The entire quote has hung on my wall through most of my adult life. The words have so often been proven true. Your post today is so powerful and so heartfelt. I can see the power and the magic working. Enjoy the cruise and your time off. Let the magic work. See you in December.

Jane Hoppe

Kristin, you often inspire me. Today's post especially did. Have a wonderful, refreshing sabbatical.
Jane Hoppe


I enjoy your writings and photos which reach across two oceans to greet me but I also understand your need for a enjoy your time away from the computer. But I hope you do come back please, as sometimes your writings hit me right at the right your post today...which makes the "powerful thoughts of William Hutchison Murray" so real.

Diane Young

"nothing ventured, nothing gained". So glad you captured Janis and a fellow photographer encouraged you to do so. I try to remember to ask permission and haven't gotten any "no" replies. Have a glorious Novembre, cruising, relaxing, charging your batteries. We will indeed be here when you return, but will miss you a lot. You top the queue when opening my email. Bon voyage a vous et Jean-Marc.

Stacy ~ Sweet Life Farm

My dear friend Kristi, what a gift of genius you are, today’s story right in tune with my heart. I admire your boldness in taking the initiative to gift yourself a month’s hiatus (something I have longed for months, years now). Bless your unbridled heart!

I have shared the powerful words of Goethe and Murry with my father, who yesterday embarked on a healing hiatus of his own.

Wishing you a sweet November cozy-ed by Providence and nature’s rhythm.

Georgia Schall

It would be too hard to choose one element over another! When we were at Giverney last month, I loved photographing the flowers and gardens. I am no photographer either, but I hope to possibly make cards with photos on the front for Christmas gifts, time permitting.

Bon Voyage! Enjoy your river cruise and time off!

Cynthia Lewis (Eastern Shore of Maryland)

Dear Kristin,

How wonderful to make a new friend with whom you have so much in common. The two of you will share and learn a lot from each already have! I always think that a person in a picture brings the photo or painting "to life" so to speak .

With a schedule like yours plus a busy life with your family, you should take a sabbatical or two every year. FWAD is what I most look forward to on my computer; you have a way with words which I so enjoy. I'll "see" you in December.

Bon voyage and "Happy November/Thanksgiving"!

Sue J

happy re-charge, Kristi -- and good luck with your photography. I have gotten yelled at more than once (so enchanted with what I was photographing that I forgot to ask first). And this was in the US! Bonne chance.


I will certainly miss you, Kristi, and will look forward to your December return to my life. Enjoy your month & cruise and take lots of pictures - of people and things and places as all of them are interesting.

dorothy dufour


Christine Dashper

Great story and great pic, you go girl!

Have a fantastic break!



Recharge--Recharge......enjoy this time ! Looking forward to December and all your future musings & inspired anew !

Kathleen from Connecticut


Have a great relaxing vacation and time off. Will you celebrate Thanksgiving?
I too love to take pictures of people and sometimes I ask and other times I just shoot. In Europe you can still take pictures of children, but not in the US. I have some wonderful pictures of people at restaurants in France, where they did not know that I was photographing them. I have had them in shows here, so I guess that I am safe,but who is to say?
I also like to take pictures which are abstract ... where you are not quite sure what it is. There are so many themes which I like.
If I take a close up then I definitely ask the person.

See you in December...we'll be here.


Karen from Phoenix

Have a wonderful cruise. I look forward to your stories when you and Jean-Marc return. Say hello to Susan for me. Am I right that she on the cruise with you??? I will miss your stories too! xoxo

Betty Gleason

Enjoy your time off, the cruise and being alive! I know right where that tattoo parlor is & went to Mass in St. Francis de Sales, the Bandol church. It must have some history.

María E. Sastre Wirshing

Have a wonderful river trip and enjoy every minute of it.

Looking forward to read all the stories about your trip.

God Bless You.

Chris Allin

Sometimes it takes boldness and a great leap of faith to have an incredible journey. And sometimes it takes an amazing inspiration for that great leap of faith. My husband and I are about to embark on what we hope will truly be an incredible journey. Thanks to you, Kristin, and Jean-Marc for the inspiration....

Chris in Kansas

june furey

Kristin, I wish you a joyful cruise and who knows this could be the beginning of a bright new adventure which may wish to host again in years to come. As you said in the quote, be bold and accept all that the days bring to you, the time will be filled with wonderful memories. I will miss you, but realise how you must need this holiday with Jean-Marc. Look forward to your return in December, relax and enjoy
your artiste ami June, Qld

Ellen from BH

Have a great trip, Kristin! If you and Jean-Marc get off the boat in Les Andelys, you must go up the hill to Chateau Gaillard for a wonderful view of the chalk cliffs and the Seine, not to mention the ruins themselves - of a fortress built by King Richard Coeur de Lion! One of my favorite places in the whole world.
If time permits, stop in as well at the Chaine d'Or, a delicious restaurant with windows on the river and beautiful rooms that look out over the Seine.

And to Susan Essex: It is never too late to go and live in France. Let everything else go. Take one suitcase and someone you love. Breathe and believe!


Enjoy your cruise an time off. Just bought the ebook. Now I have all your books. Take care.

Pat Cargill

A perfect bon voyage post. Love, LOVE the photo of Janis, she radiates confidence and joy. Picture-perfect pose, too, cool beyond cool. As always your writing inspires and unites. Happy travels, rest well.

Jennifer Dugdale

I love that quote, way before Nike's "Just do It", but the same meaning. Thanks for sharing.


As I read about your one month hiatus, I had a mix of emotions. My first is the regret that I don't read your posts as quickly as they arrive. Often, a month will go by and then I'll go back and catch up on everything you posted. Other times, I read as they come and wish you would write every day! My second emotion is my fear that you won't come back! How often do we say we will do something just for x period of time and then, when that time is up, it's easy to just let it be the past and not resume the activity! My third emotion is annoyance at myself for being so selfish that I don't want to allow you time to regroup and come back recharged! I love reading your perspective of living in France and have enjoyed "moving" with you to your new home. I really hope your time off will bring you back with just as many fantastic stories and entertaining and informative tales as we've come to enjoy at French Word A Day!!


The photographer behind Humans of New York has occasionally dropped hints as to how he approaches strangers. If you don't follow him, you should!

Suzanne Dunaway

Now I know why we hit it off easily--We are Go For It Girls!!!
I hope your hiatus is relaxing and full of adventures. Tu peut profiter bien avec une repose...
but I know your mind is always jumping!

Nancy,                     Cambridge

Well, Kristin, you have been kind in the past, so I'm going to take a lesson and be BOLD...
I have a book-signing for ALAN'S LETTERS" this Friday at the St. Avold book shop, 2-7pm. Anyone who is in the area is welcome! My French is getting a little better, and my english is just fine, so would be fun to chat with other frenchwordaday'ophiles.
Fun that you mentioned pumpkins- I spent a lot of time this October in France looking for the type to cut into jack-o-lanterns...
You'll have a wonderful month. Enjoy.


Kristin, when you return from your well deserved sabbatical you must read about Brandon Stanton's transformation while taking photos in NYC. Very inspiring indeed!


And good to have you back!

I was missing my French word of the day.

I know what you mean about those sabbaticals - I've done it a few times with the fear that I would simply let things drop. Has never happened and I think it's good to take a break.

All the best to you,


Verify your Comment

Previewing your Comment

This is only a preview. Your comment has not yet been posted.

Your comment could not be posted. Error type:
Your comment has been posted. Post another comment

The letters and numbers you entered did not match the image. Please try again.

As a final step before posting your comment, enter the letters and numbers you see in the image below. This prevents automated programs from posting comments.

Having trouble reading this image? View an alternate.


Post a comment

Your Information

(Name and email address are required. Email address will not be displayed with the comment.)