Paris Life Weekly Roundup

Weekly Roundup 4: Moments and Memoirs // September 25–October 1, 2017

thingvellir national park

Week 4!

Busy week full of lots of reflection. I’ve also apparently been in an introspective mood this week …

Here is a quick recap of some of my favorite moments and memoirs of life in Paris for the week:

1- I started Finish by Jon Acuff over the weekend and finished it by Monday! I have learned that if I want to finish a book, it is going to have to be an audiobook (this has been the case since I was a gymnast and didn’t have enough time to read, but had my long commutes the the gym every day!). I’ve decided I should just leave the book on repeat… forever. So many good lessons that I’m really working on digesting. I highly recommend it for anyone that is a perfectionist, type-A, creative, chronic starter or chronic non-finisher (and if you are like me, you are ALL OF THE ABOVE!).

When one door closes, another opens, they say. _ Sometimes “they” are right. Me being in Paris, my marriage, my job… they all fall into this category more or less. _ Just as I took this picture, the door opened. Does that mean I should walk through? No. Because I don’t belong on the other side of that door. _ This felt like a metaphor. If we always look for that next open door, sometimes we may walk into a place where we just don’t belong. Just as sometimes I think a closed door means you just need to put a lock on it and walk away, an open door can mean that you just need to keep walking. Just because we *could* doesn’t mean we *should.* _ Perfectionists like myself have trouble with this idea. I just started reading Finish by @jonacuff this weekend (and finished it today), and it spoke so much to my heart on so many levels. I’m realizing that one reason I struggle to finish is because sometimes I commit to doing stuff that i just shouldn’t do, even though I can. Turns out, no one can be great at everything. And that’s not just ok, but it’s normal. Pick the stuff you are going to say no to, or just plain be bad at, so you have time to do–and finish–the stuff that really matters. (I guess I’ve chosen laundry! 😂)

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Steeeetch. _ This week has been super stretching. Personally, professionally, and physically it’s been hard to keep up. That means some workouts are 1/2 workouts. Because that’s all I’ve got today. But that’s better than nothing, right? Riiiight?!?! _ I read a book in the last two days (it was that good) called “Finish.” It talks about the demise of Finish is perfectionism. And that a perfectionist prefers a zero over a 50%. Because somehow nothing is better than something. And something is just not worth our time. And if we miss a day or break a streak, mind as well quit. _ So, I’m trying to work on the “day after perfect.” As in, as soon as I’m not perfect, not giving up. Not saying to myself that it isn’t even worth continuing because I’ve already blown it. _ Because 50 is always > 0. I’ve always been good at math, so that shouldn’t be so hard to grasp.

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2- Starting the work week is always easier when you work at a place that has views like this out each window (you can also see Sacré Coeur at the Eiffel Tower from different windows). I still can’t believe sometimes that this is where I ended up for my first job in France! 😍


3- The permission to shoot anything. About 12 years ago, I started going to PhotoshopWorld and went each year for a while. I learned much of what I needed to start my career in design at those conferences and others similar to it. Each year, one of the highlights was a panel discussion by some of the “stars” of the photography world. One particular photographer, Joe Glyda, was primarily a food photographer. But instead of sharing his best food shots, each year he would arrive at the event and give himself a mini-project to shoot while there. I remember him shooting blue, circles and photos with stuffed ducks in them. The thing that stuck with me was the permission to shoot anything… and that anything could make a great shot if framed and contextualised in the right way. I feel like I’m doing a tad of that here… I look for green a lot and for easily over-looked details or hidden beauty. Living in one of the most photographed cities in the world, it is a challenge to see things with a new perspective. Sometimes I succeed better than others. Sometimes the cliché shot is just too hard to pass up.

I had no much green there was in this city til I started to actively seek it. 💚🌱
_ About a decade ago, a particular photographer really made an impression on me while I attended photoshop world. Several years in a row, I saw him present at the end of the event a collection of images that he had taken over the previous few days. He had given himself a theme – typically a color or shape or something similar – and turned it into a personal project to document the that thing over the course of a few days. His collection of images was always fantastic, and it was really cool to see how ordinary things became incredible subjects of his photography. _ Anyone else ever done this? What has your favorite theme been?

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Green with envy. 💚

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4- What do you shoot when you don’t want to take the stereotypical Louvre Pyramid shot? Shadows on the ground.

Walking home from work through the @museelouvre (yeah, I know, right?!), I found a temporal exhibit of shadow art in the corridor.

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5- I keep talking about the weather, but it keeps changing, and thus is having a decent impact on our daily lives at the moment. Each day, it could be something totally different than the day before… and also totally different than the forecast. Paris has the most fickle weather I’ve ever experienced.

I woke up like this.

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6- Had a girls’ night this week with some of my absolute favorites… and my village! Being an immigrant can be terribly difficult (and beautiful and wonderful, don’t get me wrong), and having people in your corner that all are journeying through similar things makes all the difference. I’ve never been a “goes out a lot” kind of a person, but I’m coming to cherish more and more time spent with my closest friends.

Girls night does a soul so much good! These cabbage “flowers” were for our awesome host @hphedgehog. 🌺

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7- Paris Fashion Week was this week and sadly I realized that I should have been going on my “photo walks” on my lunch hour on Friday. There were fashion shoots everywhere I looked!

I passed three fashion shoots today in a span of 5 minutes. The two others in my stories! #parisfashionweek

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8- Found this guy “licking the windows”

Just a little window shopping! In French it’s called “window licking” and this guy could have been very easily doing just that! 😉

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9- The weekend was spent planning our honeymoon/anniversary trip to Iceland! PLEASE, if you have any tips, let me know!!! I’m lonely planning a trip like this 9-day self-drive itinerary. I booked 17 hotels via 😬


10- One of my favorite spots in the city to read or work or just share a tea and conversation with a friend is the Usedbook Café. I may have chosen my first Paris flat based on its proximity to Merci!


That’s a wrap! Onto week 5!

For even more moments and memoirs from this week, check out my Instagram @bonjour.melissa (and @project.aimfly for my health/fitness journey)!

  for the ♥ of moments,



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