Tag Archives: Leonardo da Vinci

Bread and Castles

We had to overcome a huge challenge these last two days while on our castle marathon.  France is very expensive.  Meals at restaurants, even for lunch, cost at least $50-$60 for a family of four and that’s without alcohol.  So we’ve tried very hard to mitigate the damage to our travel budget by taking advantage of the beautiful weather and gorgeous scenery to enjoy picnic lunches where we can.

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Castles, Castles Everywhere

The castles are everywhere.  Like weeds, they crop up along the Loire River every few miles.  Each one more spectacular than the last because successive kings had to outdo their predecessors, their queens had to outdo their predecessors and in some cases, the kings’ mistresses had to outdo their queens.

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Mona Lisa

Chloe loved her creative writing class so much that she asked me to continue giving her assignments. The theme of the class was “a picture is worth a thousand words” and the teacher used works of art to get the kids’ creative juices flowing.

I decided to go with the most famous painting in the world for her first post-class story. The Mona Lisa. Mysterious, intriguing, that smile that’s not a smile. And hell, she’s part owner of the painting now, since it belongs to the people of France. Without revealing too much about the plot Chloe devised (I’ll post it to the blog in the next few days), let’s just say that my 9-year old resolved the mystery of who the Mona Lisa was by providing a compelling back story.
She completed the story this evening. And I’ve already given her the next assignment. We have time traveled from the beginning of the 16th century to the mid-20th century and World War II. Piet Mondrian’s “Broadway Boogie Woogie” will provide new inspiration for Chloe’s creative endeavors. And if she’d like to see it in person, she won’t have to travel to Paris. MoMA, here we come!