Thursday, January 2, 2020

~Bonne Maman~♥

A new decade..a new year..
I hope it's good..and maybe even better for many.
Definitely not worse~♥

I want nothing but the best for all of you.

I am thinking of a few of you in particular..

I never make resolutions.
I just hope.

I never set goals..never work people used to say to what point do you set your goals?

I honestly never did.

I did get super excited when things went so well I couldn't believe it:)

But I was NEVER one for award ceremonies ..or parties..and I am not married to someone who applauds it was kind of always ..still to make my mom proud even though she wasn't here.

One day my aged aunt Elise wrote me a card and said:"I saw your photo in the paper..your mom would have been so proud".
That was it.
That made that year so worth it.1992.

I was on stage shaking inside  actually that year.. I hate being in front of a lot of people..and I really did think..Is this all there is?'s been ages..and I am so grateful to all the wonderful people I met..along the way..very very few were not that nice LOL and I passed them to others.;)

One of the first interviews for a listing I went to..I was 28 I think..the man was so mean..I said :"If you think you're going to make me're wrong."
Got in my car and bawled.

He is long gone he was 70 maybe back then or maybe he looked 70 to me and was 40 as I was..only 28:)
He called ME..why was he grilling me?


I'll never forget his name.

Did that job for almost 30 yrs.. and I did love it.
Which brings me to some kind of wonderful.

And it really only hit me as being freaking wonderful when I actually noticed what the jar said ..and thought:"Oh my God my mom seeing this?"
My mom the fabulous artist.
The fabulous person.

So here's the may remember I designed a little watercolor for Bonne Maman after a lovely woman approached me through IG.

And asked if I would paint I did.

Without the Bonne Maman written..just the little artwork.
She was so nice..she liked it♥
So I gave them the art..,that was my idea..they had fully wanted to remunerate me..but I had a job for 30 yrs..I just want to play now.. and so  they sent me sweet Bonne Maman offerings..
She approached me to try my hand at something else but for reasons that are personal..I had to say no.

When Bonne Maman has gatherings..sometimes I see the menu is in the middle of my darn cute to me..
Then at Christmas..I sent my favorite person at Bonne Maman a card (she keeps them:) )

She asked if they could use the lights.. for tags..  they are starting up an E~commerce site.. and would use them as such .I said of course.
And again I was offered remuneration and said no..

I said:" When there are cute things..maybe think of me :) And Jacques said..:"Oh tell her I love their caramel:):)"~

I did say that I had noticed that at all their parties..or some..guests received a jar of jam with their name on it.
Monograms were my fave things in the 70's!

I had a red V neck sweater w/ a white M to go with my kilt at the 70's;)

anything with words..names..initials..I am in;)

So..I mentioned if ever you are printing up jars w/ names again..I kind of would love that:)

I received cute things and jars of a thank you..and later as I put them away..
I noticed that one of the jars had my name.
And look what she had inscribed.
I just thought:"Oh my God mom I hope you  can see this".

I am a kid playing w/ paints..she went to L'Ecole Des Beaux Arts in Montreal.That was to be her future..

Then she met my jet setting that was the end of that.

I am making this my first post of 2020.

That successful ,talented,lovely woman at Bonne Maman..lit up my life this past year.

And I am so grateful.

I am not eating that jam:)

I have loved BM since the first day I saw their jars.

I have been to France 4 times since 2009 and scope out the BM in the grocery stores:)

I love their products..even the empty jars..and I have a super sweet collection of things that will be in their E~COMMERCE site soon.

Oh..and we had snow;)

I think he needs a jar of Bonne Maman:)

It is still so hard to search past posts and find all my photos missing..back it up everyone ..back it up.

And I am disappointed that one cannot comment on blogs w/ mini Ipads..All Blogger related.

I can't on my own blog reply..and I cannot on others to comment.
Is this getting towards the end of Blogger as we know it?
I've tried it all..different browser..clearing cookies and cache..the whole nine yards.
To no avail.
Anyone have solutions?
Thank you and I hope people light up your lives in some ways in 2020.


  1. Dearest Monique
    What a SWEET Bonne Maman story and mostly about your dear Mom! Precious memories and she kept inspiring you, one can tell!
    You are so right, there are some 'nasty' people we encounter during our work period. My husband Pieter always had a great saying. 'Just be glad you don't have to go home with them!'... Just forget about it and after all, they're not even worth your time or disturbed emotions.
    In general people are very kind and generous and on that we can rely.
    As for the mini Ipad or ANY Apple gadget, we cannot comment, it is related to Safari. So IF you can have the GoogleChrome browser installed (don't know if that works on iPad...?!) you can comment again and reply to comments on your own blog. It is NOT Blogger related but working or competing against it as Blogger is still a Google child...

    1. It was very surprising and I admit in full transparency I was pretty excited:)
      Mariette I so appreciate your suggestion..I am a Chrome Girl..and use Chrome on my's a conundrum..
      Yes soooo many Nice nice people..
      I must admit not so nice doesn't site very well with me..if it's repeatedly.
      I can easily walk away..but once in a while,everyone can have a bad day..something sad happen to's the villains I watch for:)
      Thanks again and again and have a great day.

    2. TestingIt works if I log on again .I have to reply takes me toBloggerLogIn in a whole new window..log in..message disappears..start over it works.Itwould help if this was from the

  2. Wow!! You love Bonne Maman and they love YOU! Your watercolors are sweet, like the contents of their jars. I didn't quite understand why you didn't accept payment, but you did what you needed to do, with integrity. And your photos, as always, crisp and clear and inviting. Bonne année! I will make a post soon, it's been a long while...

    1. Painting for me is a hobby a joy..therapy:)
      It's not a profession..clearly:)
      I had a was remunerated...for almost 30 yrs.
      I paint the pleasure of it...
      It was such an honor to be asked..

    2. Ditto
      Never say no to renumeration.
      Makes it harder for other illustartors imho.
      *I can only comment here if I go thru yr comment to yrAbout and the link.
      Blogger/Google doesn't care about us to paraphrase MJ...ahem

    3. I feel I can say what I want to say:) As Noah says so well..Because I am me..I am different.
      To each their own.I did accept remuneration for my job and I often recived thank you gifts..personal tokens on top of that.
      For my art..I love to just share it's not my job..and Bonne Maman have been generous with BM items.
      Win win.

  3. There is no one like you Monique, I never see such goodness and generosity. You deserve only good things. I also like the GM jams and always keep the jars because they are wide and practical and I love the pretty lids. Happy New Year!

    1. All the same reasons as me!!I bet in France you spot them also:) Here we can't get the Madeleines France the product line is greater.
      Cute workd right?Add quality and it's a win win!
      Bonne journée!!!

  4. How exciting Monique!! :) You are so very talented - so nice that you share it with the rest of us... xo
    Happy 2020!

  5. And a Bright and Beautiful Beginning it is!! We've only in the past couple of decades been able to purchase those wee joyful jars, and for many years, the only flavor was strawberry. On Christmas Eve, I took my 93-year-old neighbor a nice box of goodies made up as our daughter was creating a fabulous charcuterie board for our family gathering. My friend's daughter was here to spend Christmas with her Mom, and I had told them earlier that I'd be bringing them a little treat for their dinner. So a nice selection of charcuterie, cheeses, mustards, crudite and dips and crackers and fruit, along with a small le Creuset of warm baked Brie and naan were included in the box. I handed it in at the back door, to both of them smiling and admiring and all ready to sit down with their treats, and as I got almost back home, she called out for me to come back. I thought she wanted to show me the charming Advent Calendar book she was holding, but she wanted me to pick out a couple of the tiny jars of exotic and wonderful jams and jellies from the niches in the book. I'm still smiling, thinking of that moment of sharing and joy in each other's company and generosity. Nectarine and plum. Awaiting a quiet moment at breakfast, or an afternoon muffin and tea for a little feast with Chris, now that he's retired. This pales mightily into fade beside your own cordial relationship and happy mutual admiration with the company, but I thought I'd share my small spark that makes me smile.

    1. II had to just go through the rigamarole I mentioned above about re-signing into blogger but couldn't wait for a laptop to reply to your comment.
      First of all your kindness and generosity👍🏻🙏🏻
      I am sure you do not want applause but I love that you did all that AND that they called you back.
      The Advent calendar that was shared and loved amidst the gifts of friendships.
      Thank you for sharing this story🙏🏻

  6. Happy New Year Monique. May this new year being you happiness and so much more. Love your pretty jars, plus lol of the wonderful things you paint, bake and create. Not sure about the iPad mini. I have the pro and have no issues commenting. I am always willing to share if I find a solution.

    1. Good morning!I did find a solution..when you start to asks if you want to comment under your google account or url or anonymous..even if your Google account is checked..your avatar is not there..Just type in a word..a pop up appears asking for you to log into it..
      then go back to comment..your comment is gone but your avatar back and you can comment:)
      That's what is working for me..tedious..I browse with Chrome.
      You are a stellar IT gal and set designer..etc..all your tablescapes are display/magazine worthy!

    2. So glad it works for you. It is so much easier to comment when using a smaller device while reading blogs. Thank you Monique. You are so kind.

  7. Bonne Maman is a favorite of mine as well. Just recently, I’ve found the Bonne Maman intense, because you blogged about it, and have stocked up! The jar with your name on it is delightful!
    Your Mother must have been such a lovely person, as are you. I’m always taken aback when encountering rude people like the one you interviewed with.
    Love your artwork❣️❣️❣️❣️❣️

    1. Ry..thank you! It was such a surprise that they added our favorite artist:)
      But how thoughtful and kind..little things can really make a lasting impression;)Like rude people lol.
      Have a good weekend.Loved seeing the photo of you and J on IG:)

  8. What a wonderful first post of the year, Monique! Kudos to you! You are so deserving of this honor and I know how proud you mother would be ♥ As long as we fill our lives with the things that give us happiness and pleasure, that's so important. Your love of Bonne Maman shows in your charming watercolors. I wouldn't eat the jam either ;) It would be in a place where I could see it every day ♥ I wish I could help regarding the mini ipad blog posting :( I know others have told me they can't comment on my blog and so they have stopped. I also told them to use Chrome or Firefox and not Safari as I had read that was an issue. I find it a pain when I have to fill in my email and my blog address on some sites each time I want to comment. So much hassle! Why do some have to be so difficult? I hate that I have to sit at my desk and can't use my ipad or phone too. Oh well :) Thankfully, IG makes it easy. Frosty! Did your boys make him? He's so handsome ♥ We're expecting snow showers today but not much accumulation. Here's to a wonderful 2020 for you, My Pea!

    1. And to you..
      I made the snowman.. and J picked up his hat et al yesterday as it's been so mild he melted away.Gloomy winter so boys have outgrown the Do You Want To Build A Snowman days:(
      I did figure out a seems Chrome or whatever..disengages with Blogger sign in..
      So if you read the explanation will find the answer..I relogged in to Blogger and my Ipads been fine..something happens and you get signed out..perhaps you could suggest this to your followers:)
      As it worked for me..clearing cookies and cache and changing browers did not all had to do w/ my Blogger account.
      On the sites I have to relog in every single time..I have stopped..
      I have unfortunately stopped a few blogs..

      Bonne année Pea!

    2. Thanks so much for the tip! I'll save this :)

  9. Oh my! This is THE biggest deal EVER! I am so proud of you! That had to have taken your breath away when you realized you were named -- and so perfectly -- on the jar! That is a huge big deal! I love all your paintings of Bonne Maman. I always have -- it's the best jam. Period. I'm not sure I knew about your relationship with the companies and your paintings. I think you are so lovely not to have accepted remuneration for your art and they were lovely to compensate you in one way or another. But really, that is the best of all time. This is THE BEST first of the year post I've read! And I'm so, so proud of you and your beautiful work!

    Your blog is my haven. Right now there is chaos going on in my house and I'm supposed to keep away, which is fine but it's hard to be in a house with chaos and not be able to be in there with it. (All part of the kitchen re-do project from Rick and the kids. I hope none of them kill each other) And I am here, in my haven at your blog. And so happy. Happiest of new years, my friend.

    1. It was a matter of circumstances I think..A lovely woman who reached out to me.
      I wish I could have done more for her.
      Some people you can just tell how genuine they are.She is.
      Jeanie I am excited for you and the changes..chaos is hard to be in..Cannot wait to see your projects.
      Thank you as always for your encouragement!

  10. Oh I always get lost and caught up in your stories Monique...always take me back to my youth...
    My dad passed when I was 21...not married yet...and I still dream that he comes to me, and sees my kids and grandkids and gives me the thumbs up...💙
    My Mom knew all of my kids...and I am grateful for that...
    And I know that your Mom is smiling down at you...and saying..."Thats my girl""...❤️
    beautiful artwork...for a delicious product...tell J i love the caramel too! hahaha!!
    Enjoy your weekend...
    Linda :o)

    ps...I have not been able to comment from my ipad for ages...always need to come upstairs to my big MAC...kind of annoying at best...

    1. xxx
      So when you try to comment from your Ipad..try this..

      Make sure Comment as..Google account is checked..(Avatar will be a nothing face)..comment and publish..make it short because it will disappear.
      A pop up will ask you to log into it..go back to comments..your avatar will be there and you can comment and publish try it:)
      It worked for me!
      Dreary weather here these days..Frosty's a puddle..

      I love what you said:"That's My Girl"♥♥
      The caramel:)
      Have a great weekend too:)

    2. I will try that!!! Guess I'll have to look up my blogger password!!! hahaha!!

    3. Lol thank goodness for my password book☺️

  11. Monique, I love every detail about this post, especially your mention of your mom. You know she is proud of you!!!! We are long time fans of Bonne Maman here. We save the jars too. Just can't throw them in the trash or even recycle. We use them to store all sorts of things. I also take bags of them to the thrift store. I don't keep the label attached, but will now. I like that idea! Love them for flowers. You are the dearest and kindest with your art. I'm thrilled that Monne Mama appreciates your art and uses it. Can't wait to see the new web offerings. I search for their mini jars, but not found here. I never did find their advent calender either.
    Happy Sunday!

    1. Oh if ever I see minis again..there were some at our Christmas..Mylène bought a set for Noah:)
      the minis are so cute.
      Oh the feelings for our moms right? The angels that cradled us when we were born..that wiped our tears.. lived for us.
      One never quite finds that ever again in life.
      We were so fortunate.
      When the Ecommerce is online I'll tell you!

  12. Such a Nice post.....happy new year darling...lots of love Ria 💕💕

  13. How wonderful Monique and adorable as always! You know you mom, she is proud of you anyways, even without things like this. I have an idea you were the apple of her eye and still are. Funny that, how it goes, how no matter what we do in life, pleasing our mom's and making us proud of us is the pinacle of success to us. I know I did not go home for a few years prior to my mom passing because I am fat and I did not want her to see me fat. And now I wish I had, no matter what. But my mother always was quite critical of fat people and I did not want her to be disappointed in me, and I felt that she would be. I love your art always. I treasure the art card you sent me for Christmas. I have all of your cards actually on display in my craft room. I hope to do more art this year and less other things. Love all that you share my sweet friend. I hope 2020 is very good to us all. Happy New Year! xoxo

    1. Oh Mariexxxxx
      This made me sad to read.
      As you know..I was very heavy for many yrs..I would say 9-16.
      The ridicule I was subjected too marked me forever.
      It has made me aware of how people etc...and it has made me a worrywart in this regard I find.
      I am always the supporter of the underdog..but when it comes to family and health etc..I do worry about all these things.It's made me so sensitive .
      Yet look at everything we can control and out of the blue an moment in time changes one's life forever.A cousin of mine who never drank smoked..was an angel..died of cancer in her 30s with two little girls..Jacques' runner friend..also..the list is arm's length and more..
      Genetics play a pivotal role in so many aspects of our physical selves..I hate when it's blamed on overeating etc...
      I nearly starved myself at 15..for almost 1 be what my friends..(lol friends) were.
      And I was sad at my mother being subjected to the cruelty of the kids in my neighbourhood towards me.
      As you know..a mother is only as happy as her unhappiest child.

      So it killed me to know they were making her sad too.

      I still say shame on them.

      You are so honest and sincere.Heartbreakingly so.
      I wish YOU nothing but the best and have everything you have ever sent me..I even have a Kindle cookbook on top of the hardcopy:) I was so afraid of missing out LOL:)
      You are talented in so many ways and not in a jack of all trades master of none way.
      The garland is still up♥

  14. How wonderful that your beautiful artwork is appreciated Monique, and by someone that you appreciate so much. Sounds like Jacque is a lot like my hubby when it comes to praise, as were my parents. Have a fabulous 2020 dear Monique!

    1. Susan the same to you and thank you🙏🏻I think you're great☺️

  15. How swet that story about Bonne Maman is. We can find that jam here and I do like it very much.
    Happy New Year, dear Monique.

  16. Lovely post!! Bonne mama are my favorite jams !! and I save all the jars because I use when I make my own jam! and of course you deserved this because you love them (we talk about them sometimes) and I love your work always Monique !! hugs and love

  17. What a touching installment M. And the photos and art work! All so pretty.

  18. Sweet !
    My fav thing to paint too ❤️

    1. Answered above re remuneration on your comment)
      My art..My blog..My decision.
      Thank you!

  19. I love everything about this post. Love your art.

  20. A PS. Even though I didn't at first understand about not being paid, I really do. It's just that your paintings are so professional looking! I am currently giving art lessons to a friend. She wanted to pay me, but I proposed a barter. She's going to coach me in some organizational aspects of my life. Intentionality, productivity. I like the barter system, it takes a certain pressure off. And yet, I'm finding that in my lessons to her, I'm going 100%. Our of love of art and teaching, not for the money. Your comments above reminded me of Popeye: "I am what I am." And a dear former co-worker of mine used to go around saying, in a comical, kid type voice: " I do what I want!"

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