Tag Archives: hidden in france

HIDDEN IN PARIS COOKBOOK GIVEAWAY

Kindle Fans! Food Fans! Hidden in France Fans! Hidden in Paris Fans! Feng Shui By Fishgirl Fans! Author Corine Gantz is giving away free downloadable copies of her Hidden in Paris Cookbook through Sunday April 15th. I just got mine and it is yummy. I’ll be reviewing this after I try some recipes in my own kitchen so stay tuned. Meanwhile, you can read my interview with Corine here. Bon Apetit!

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Filed under Family & Health, Fun, gifts, Reading, Travel, Wisdom & Knowledge

FENG SHUI VS. THE FRENCH WAY: Hidden in France Interviews Feng Shui By Fishgirl

I was recently interviewed by author/blogger Corine Ganz about the nature of feng shui on her blog Hidden in France. During the interview Corine coaxed me to reveal my 5 Top Feng Shui Tips for Romance so do be sure to go read the entire post here. And see if you can find one “feng shui no-no” in Corine’s bedroom above–be sure to post your comments. Thanks, Corine for making my day brighter!

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Filed under Celebrities, Creativity & Future Projects, Design, Feng Shui, Feng Shui Home, Fun, Interior Design, Love & Relationship

HIDDEN IN PARIS: An Auspicious Interview With Author Corine Gantz

I am thrilled that my friend Corine Gantz has published her
first novel. Corine is an inspiration to all of us aspiring
writers–she found the time to write despite being a full
time wife and mother. Corine’s been entertaining us for
years with her blog “Hidden in France”. Some people
say I feng shui’ed myself out of California but in fact,
it’s Corine’s fault that I moved—she introduced
me to my mate six years ago and I consequently began
a new life–Hidden in High Point and the sequel, Hidden
in Stonington– on the east coast with my delightful life partner.

You can read about Corine’s adventures in matchmaking here.

Author & Blogger Corine Gantz

My exclusive interview with Corine reveals her wicked
sense of humor. See my review of her novel and then
go out and get it for your summer beach reading–you
won’t be disapppointed.

FSBF: Your blog is called “Hidden in France” and your
book is called “Hidden in Paris”. Will you continue the
“hidden” theme or the “French” theme in your next book?

CORINE: Ahem… my husband has already bought domain
names for ‘hidden’ followed by a dozen cities and countries,
and I appreciate his enthusiasm but definitely no.
“Hidden in France” was the original title of the novel,
I started a blog with that name, then realized that oops,
there already was a book by that name. You can’t copyright a
book title but I did not want to step on anyone’s toes, especially
the toes of someone who survived the holocaust by hiding in France.
You know what I mean, one does not mess with holocaust survivors,
it’s just plain bad feng-shui.

FSBF: You have 2 sons and your main character
Annie has 3 sons. Coincidence?

CORINE: Absolute coincidence, see she has 3 and
I have 2.  I’m perfectly disguised!

FSBF: One of my favorite–and hilarious– passages
in “Hidden in Paris” was the way Annie’s young
boys got away with the “no swearing” rule by using
the popular internet expression of spelling out
the letters WTF. Did your boys help you with that?

CORINE: No one bothers with acronyms at my
house, I’ve long lost this battle.

FSBF: You seem to have a deep understanding of how
many women lose themselves in relationships.
Not just relationships with their partners but also
with their parents, for example. In the book all 3 women
have lost sight of their authentic selves
through their codependence on others.Why did you
choose to focus on  this particular issue?

CORINE: I’m interested in women and the kinds
of limitations we put on ourselves, and how we
manage to break free of them.  The breaking free
and the strange forms this takes is the interesting
bit for me.  In the past it was true that society
and men conspired to limit women, but this is
no longer the case. Yet modern, smart, functioning
women often take every (unconscious) step to impose
limitations on themselves.  It’s as though it is so
anchored in our collective unconscious that we
cannot help but reenact it.  We can so easily become
our own jailors out of love, fear, guilt, anger. And
when we realize that we own the key out of
that jail it’t a beautiful moment.

FSBF: Do you have a lot of close female friends
or are you a loner like Annie?

CORINE: I’m definitely an introvert.  It doesn’t mean
I don’t want to be with people, but that I need
far more alone time than I need together time.
I’m not the easiest of friends, which is perhaps
why my close friends happen to be very
tolerant women (and especially tolerant of me).

FSBF: Another important character in the book is
food and French cooking. What’s cooking in your kitchen?

CORINE: Everything is cooking in my kitchen at all times.
I get a bit obsessive about food. A few days ago
I met a woman on a school field trip who said
that—how did the conversion lead to this I will
never know—she prepared meatballs by boiling them
in water first.  It sounded disgusting, this visual of boiled
animal flesh, but she was from Morocco, home of
some of the best cuisine in the world.  I had her detail
the recipe step by step. She probably thought I was a
mad woman. Once I got home I had to try it–had to!
At 7 pm I was shopping for ingredients and at 8 we
had Moroccan boiled meatballs on our plate.  By that
time we were so starved no one cared if it was
good or not, we wolfed it down.

FSBF: What authors dead or alive would you like
to have a dinner with over your kitchen table?

CORINE: An alive one, definitely.

FSBF: You took the unusual route of self-publishing
and requested your readers to help you improve
your book by sending in any typos or grammatical
errors so you can update the next printing
of your book. Was publishing a less than perfect
manuscript a risky decision or a wildly clever
marketing scheme on your part to engage your
readers with interactive participation—much like
comments posted to a blog–so that they would be
more vested in passing the word out about your book?

CORINE: Oh this wasn’t done out of cleverness,
but rather out of sheer need. My only regret was
that I did not start this edition with the disclaimer.
Finding typos in a book is like finding sand
in your oysters, it can really ruin an otherwise
enjoyable experience.  I just hope that my first readers
will be as kind and supportive as my blog readers
and that they won’t resent my asking for their help
and forgiveness. I priced the kindle ebook version
of Hidden in Paris at 2.99. When the typos are
gone maybe I’ll charge more!

FSBF: Anyone who reads your blog knows about
your infatuation with President Obama. Do you
have any ideas for catchy phrases for his 2nd term
campaign speechwriters or for his bumper stickers
perhaps?

CORINE: Let’s Obama-copter Out of this Mess!

###

Click the picture to find out where you can buy “Hidden in Paris”.
And do come back to post your own reviews in my comments
section! PSSST: Corine you are welcome to share your Moroccan
meatballs recipe with us anytime! 🙂

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PLAYING IT SAFE vs. FUN SHUI

Photo courtesy "Hidden in France" blog

Why do so many people play it safe when they could be having fun instead? This photo from Hidden in France is an example of what I mean. Here we have very traditional furniture and room but because of the fabric/color choices, we’re looking at F U N S H U I instead of B O R I N G. Feng Shui By Fishgirl knows that home interior design is a highly personal decision. Before you decide on what your home should –or shouldn’t– look like, why not try putting together files of different looks? Have an Outrageous file, for example. Another file of Traditional. Eclectic. Asian. Colorful. Slightly Offbeat But Not Too Scary. When you’ve filled your files with photos from magazines and the internet, browse the folder with feng shui eyes. Let yourself FEEL the energy each look creates. How do you feel looking at a room filled with amazing art and bright colors? How do you FEEL when looking at soothing soft colors? Take the time to really get quiet and NOTICE how you FEEL. That’s a good place to start. Your home should reflect the way you want to feel while you’re living in it. If you feel more comfortable and more like yourself in traditional decor, then honor that and go with safety. If it makes you depressed, go for color! The important thing is to go with your gut to discover your own taste. After all, it’s your home not your friends’ or relatives’.

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PAINTED HEADBOARD ENHANCES FENG SHUI

Photo courtesy Marie Claire magazine.

Here where Feng Shui By Fishgirl is headquartered, it’s freezing rain and very overcast today. So I’m looking for inspiration and color. Creativity can take my breath away. When I see something beautiful that also happens to enhance feng shui, I get a really happy feeling inside. This photo does that for me today. I might change my mind tomorrow, but today this is it. I know, I know, I’m always advocating headboards for good feng shui, right? That still holds true. But this painted wall takes the place of a headboard because

* It’s designed to lift your gaze –and the ch’i energy–upward which balances the bed and gives a headboard effect.

* It’s got an incredibly lovely scene of auspicious apple blossoms and birds and the sun—all great ch’i enhancers.

*The colors are lovely and especially so if this bedroom is located in the Love & Relationship area.

*There are two matching lamps bedside (always good in feng shui terms).

*The overhead light is covered with a round (yin!) paper lantern…very soft and a good solution to the feng shui problem of hardware over the bed.

Now to give credit where credit is due: I found this pic at Hidden in France and Corine found it at Marie Claire Maison and they found it was an actual chic new hotel you can stay at in Belgium.

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Filed under Design, Feng Shui, Feng Shui Home, Interior Design, Travel

MALIBU’S SELF REALIZATION LAKE SHRINE HAS A GOOD VIBE

Self Realization Lake Shrine in Malibu, CA

What a beautiful day in LA yesterday. After a fabulous hike in the hills —it’s always mind blowing how close truly wild natural places are to this metropolis!—with friends Corine and Isabelle, we went to do a Topanga Canyon hangout at Cafe Mimosa. (I’ll be posting separately about this cafe in a few days). After lunch we continued on to the beach and up Sunset Ave a short distance to the Self Realization Lake Shrine pictured here. Some of Mahatma Gandhi’s ashes are buried here at this peaceful retreat founded on the beliefs of Yogananda. There’s a lake with gigantic koi in it and ducks and a swan and turtles, too. A little slice of solitude in the hustle and bustle that is Malibu. Open to the public and free of charge, this place of peace is a favorite place for me and will be for you, too, if you are in LA and take the time to check it out. The feng shui here is most auspicious and I feel my Qi renewed when I left.

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SHABBY CHIC LOVIN’

Pic from Hidden in France

This picture that I found at one of my favorite blogs Hidden in France today made me smile. If shabby chic is your style, you can easily recreate this look. Get a baggy slipcover for your sofa and cover some pillows with assorted floral and toile fabric patterns that you can find online. Scour the fleamarkets and junktique shops for old paintings of floral arrangements like they used here. I happen to have one –just one–that I found up in Petaluma years ago with a bff. This romantic country look works beautifully in the Love & Relationship area. The colors white, pink, red activate that area as do blooms of roses and peonies. Soft curvy furniture also works. And to keep it from being too sweet, you’ve got the metal contemporary floor lamp. I would also splurge on a better coffee table. What would you do?

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