Sunday, November 30, 2014 ...almost..over..Welcome December..

I know I am one day early..for December..but if I am to get Movember has to be now:)

We were fortunate to spend some time in beautiful Florida this November..
Also known as Movember now..
I had packed a straw bag with little diversions for 3 of the alphabet boys that also had a vacation here with us..
One of the little goodies was a package of stick on mustaches..
We all wore one for a photo shoot except for grandad..and Frédérick who already sported Movember looks..
Thank goodness the weather cooperated  somewhat..while they were it was not the best November weather ever in Fl for us.

Albeit poorer than usual weather..many games were played..many photos taken..many fish caught..many meals shared..many everything!

The sea is a very special place..♥

The whole time we were there ..we ate out once.. and that was the night we all went out together..en famille.And only once..

Every lunch and dinner was at I call it..but it is not ours:)
So nice to share each meal.
Kids are soo funny..and busy..and beautiful.

I love prepping meals watching the sea.. so does Jacques..while there..he cooks as much as I do..
No baking takes place usually..
But it can happen..

One thing that DOES get baked the whole time we are bread.
The hands down easiest for me while away..
Is the Steamy Kitchen one because I know it by heart.
The boys LOVE it..
Similar to all the others we make..
I am astounded at how great each loaf turns very little you need..
In some ways I wish they would teach this to kids in schools..The basics ..of making bread..making meals,etc..

This bread is proof that having a gorgeous loaf of bread is so easy a 4 yr old can prep SK shows..

In evening..Oli and Max.. made it!
It's so simple.. 3cups flour..1 tsp salt..1/4 tsp yeast ..1 1/2 cups lukewarm water..Mix..cover ..let rest ap 16 hrs.. shape cover bake 450 in your preheated pot for ap 30 mins..uncover bake till can make it faster than I type it..Please refer to the link for the exact recipe and method:)
The next day I shaped it.. and baked it..
It was just as nice as when I make it alone..but tasted even better to me with them having mixed it!

My daughter made it ..first full day back to her home....our neighbor in Fl makes it now..and I gave one to Karen..

You can find..the recipe..yes..yet another

What I really wanted to show you too though apart from the edible alpha the lame I ordered from Breatopia.
Works like a charm:)♥
There is a granite counter top where we stay..So easy to prep bread with..
Like marble:)
But you certainly don't need that..
And I make this bread in a round white corning ware w/ clear lid.

Hope you try this one~
Great gift too w/ a jar of jam  etc..
A big red bow..or raffia tied.

OK..  Onto December and having pleasant moments in the kitchen baking things for people I care about.
Keep in mind older people that can't get around etc .or that are lonely.
I know I plan on visiting someone with a basket of goodies.


  1. What a lovely holiday Monique! How wonderful that you can go "tous ensemble, comme une famille!" I hope that one day I can do the same. That bread is the same as my easy bread I make. It always turns out and is sooo tasty! I am hopeless at baking bread, but this recipe always works for me! Love the beautiful seaside photos. It looks just wonderful, oh and I love the lame! What a nice one! C'est ci bon! Bisous and a Happy December/Christmas season to you and the family! xoxo

    1. nice of you to say such sweet things! that is the bread you make too!

  2. Quel bel article rétrospectif !
    Décembre et plein de douceur et d'une ambiance si particulière

  3. Oh Monique, you are such a good egg. I am going to try that bread. The boys looked like they had a ball. There is something about the beach and ocean. Something primal about it. I wish I could live at the beach.

  4. what beautiful photos of your vacation, and the ocean is beautiful, oh my that bread looks delicious, i like your idea of teaching kids the basics of cooking and of baking bread, that would be wonderful. I can't wait to see what you have in store for December :)

  5. I must try that bread! When we lived on the high plains of Texas, I had to bake all our bread because my European husband could find none to his liking. No need to knead with so many excellent bakeries in Chicago. Love seeing your boys having such a great time in Florida. Where were you vacationing? My sister lives in central Florida about 25 miles from Disney World.


    1. The Sarasota pretty to us...
      I bet your bread was delicious!

  6. Such a nice escape as winter comes calling up north. Even if it was not ideal weather, you missed some of the frigid weather we had that week. How do the boys get out of school for the week? Frankie would love that. The bread is lovely. I bought some fresh yeast packets, I am sure I will succumb to making it soon.

    1. There is a ped day and 2 weekends each boy misses 4 days..
      At one point it won't be possible but so far so good..
      Personally...I think the boys get more out of life and learning in those 4 days than in school:-)
      Fishing..Scrabble..puzzles..guessing games..mingling with people here who love them♥
      Amazing how sweet everyone is with them..
      One day it will end I guess...:-(

    2. So glad it works out for now. And the memories they will all have for life is also a plus (not to mention yours and Jacques). I have been at home goods and found MORE baking items.

    3. Lucky duck..:-)
      I see more matching apron moments!

  7. Your photos are wonderful, Monique. I'm going to the beach in a few days for a week of much needed rest. The weather won't be anything like what you enjoyed in's cold, rainy and windy here but I enjoy that too. I have never heard of a teach me something every time I visit.

    1. Truth be told..I love the ocean with all her moods.♥

  8. I love your photos of the sea, especially the ones with the boys. I have to confess when I saw the picture of the bread lame (which I hadn't heard of before!) I wondered how you were able to bring it on the plane ;)

    1. We drive!
      27 hours...our family drives all that time with 3 boys for 1 week!
      They are troopers..they arrived as the sun was gone..yet jumped in the ocean!
      The drive is the only oy.
      The friends we sea:-) there..the view..makes us keep going back!

  9. Your beach holiday looks like perfection. November is a wonderful time to get away to the beach. It's been ages since I've had a beach trip. Your photos are stellar. Makes me feel as if I've been to the beach.

    1. So wonderful..that stretch of sea is like the Mediterranean..and so few people..paradise.
      Hope you get to go again soon.

  10. Your photos say it all Monique. My favorites of course are the boys jumping in the waves and the seagulls. The seagulls would make nice note cards, but I can also see the one of the boys as a personal note card of yours. Too bad the weather wasn't as good as usual. This is the coldest November I can remember in south Florida. Usually November is one of my favorite "winter" months here. .

    Your bread is just a-m-a-z-i-n-g. You've tempted me to give it a try. I could use a lesson or two in shaping. Recently we found a "real" French bakery not to far from us. The gentleman who owns it is from Lyon and looked like he had flour in his blood. Take care and I'm so pleased you and your adorable family had a nice vacation en famille.

    1. I promise don't need a lesson in shaping with this one..bread rises beautifully in Florida..
      After the 16-18 he's..simply dampen your hands and scratch:-) the dough out of the will fim perfectly into a boule by rotating and tucking..then lay it right away on your parchment.
      For the second rise..Plot the parchment in the pre- heated vessel and return to the oven..I lamed before..
      What have you got to lose?
      There is a new Trader Joe in Fl..!
      I bought my flour there.
      Florida is the best place to be in November!
      Everyone is so nice!
      Seeing people put their xmas trees on their cars..with palm trees as the backdrop!

  11. I do love your photos, Monique. So happy, loving and carefree...just the way childhood should be. :)
    Your bread looks marvelous. I can just smell it baking. After the holidays, I really should try more yeast-based recipes!

  12. Oh how warm and wonderful it looks during your stay! The Alphabet Boys much have had a blast and it shows in the photos :) I love that they made the bread too! I'll have to see if Mack can help me make bread next time he's here. I will try this recipe - I'm sure I've done a similar one. Lovely loaf! I don't have a bread lame and now I think I do, of course :) Mer Soleil has been one of our favorite chardonnays for years for special events. Perfect bottle for FL!

    1. How uncanny re Mer Soleil!
      We have Total Wine there..and it is a treat for J and F to peruse:-)
      Mr.Mack will be so proud..
      Of course Fl has perfect rising temps!

  13. Monique, I always love your posts from F. seeing the kiddies having fun, seeing the ocean, the holiday spirit that jumps at us from your post..;love it all.
    Have a good December time in the kitchen..I just know there will be all kinds of beauty coming our way.

  14. Perhaps I will make your bread and deliver it warm to a friend using my bread basket cloth. (I was going to make pillows, but fellow bloggers figured it out) I have a bottle of Mer Soleil just waiting for a special event ;o) It must have tasted wonderful in FL!

  15. Look like a great time was had by all, I think that the ocean does that to people, it's my favorite place!

    1. It does wonders for so many things.. you walk along the beach..and if perchance you meet someone..there's a smile and a hello..Simply sweet.

  16. That bread looks amazing. I really do need to give this a try.

  17. I must try this. You make break making seem effortless. Love your pictures. The ocean is indeed very special. Thanks for sharing this lovely post.

  18. We were in Florida two weeks of November too! Looks like a wonderful time with the kids. That style of bread is my favorite too. When I think of all the years that I tried misting the oven - ha! That doesn't work at all, but to bake it in a covered baker - now that is fantastic. There is just one problem - fresh baked bread is one of my biggest temptations - could eat the whole thing!

    1. Me too..home and already there is bread being made..walk the beach a lot we do,
      And the boys kept us hopping!
      I am sure you had a great time too!

  19. Bonsoir chère Nana,

    Les photos du bonheur sont réunies sur ton bellissime billet.
    Je partagerais bien volontiers ce bon pain avec toi... Ce serait une toute petite tranche car je suis allergique au gluten !... Autour de moi je pense que je ferais des heureux, donc je vais tenter ta recette.

    Gros bisous ♡

  20. Beautiful photos, Monique. What a lovely time of year to spend at the beach - so good for the soul.
    I made that bread too. It's delicious.

    1. We enjoy it so much..I am home now and made another kind..but this one beats it by a mile..I just don't have the same indoor temps as in Fl for rising..May try w/ just in the oven with the light on..

  21. You always take such beautiful, meaningful photos, capturing the right moment. Love how you captured the birds flying and the boys fishing together with one fishing pole. So cute! Oh, and don't get me started on this bread! I think I can feel it's freshly baked aroma right now through the screen!

  22. I love this breadvMonique !
    Look stunning!