A New Orleanian in London
I was born and raised on the bayou in Southern Louisiana, learning to walk on 250-year-old floor joists in a house with no heat or air conditioning. I came of age in New Orleans during Mardi Gras and Jazz Fest, backstage with Professor Longhair, Jimmy Buffet and The Neville Brothers before I hit double digits and I had no idea drive-through daiquiri shops were strange. I spent my 20s in New York City in operations and marketing for Manhattan-based restaurant company that was a temple to the red blooded American businessmen. Now I’m in London where I drink tea, walk my three children to school and try to keep up a flat in Notting Hill where once again I am in an old house with no air conditioning. I am an avid traveller, as are my children (my 4-year-old has just taken her 70th flight). I am a contemporary art enthusiast. A recipe developer. A writer. And a social media content creator.
Belle Année is French for “Beautiful Year”
I chose the name as a way of embracing the chaos of my life and finding beauty in it at the same time. You see, year-after-year I would have a drink on New Year’s Eve and think about how much my life had changed from the same day a year prior. Sometimes we would find ourselves in a new country, sometimes a new city, sometimes after welcoming a new person into our lives, sometimes bidding a loved one goodbye. The only consistency was how much change came along. I decided that instead of running from that I would embrace it and revel in the beauty and opportunity that was our crazy life.
Once upon a time I thought BelleAnnee.com would be a food blog
I aimed to post weekly and to include a short story with stunning photography. I wrote a few food-based articles for respected publications and I loved what I was doing, but I also realized that prowess in the kitchen, some interesting stories and an expensive camera weren’t quite enough to be a real food blogger (see JoytheBaker for a REAL food blogger). I took a break at the beginning of 2018 and thought through what I genuinely had to offer and what I wanted to get out of BelleAnnee.com. Where I got to was that I want to continue to celebrate food here, but will also discuss much more of what makes me tick. Tips to travel with children. How to survive as an expat. Amazing experiences near and far. Giving back. Even some art…and trust me, I’ll make it all interesting.
Two additional parts of my life after family, food and travel is my role as Arts & Culture editor for @London and member of @Creatingforgood. @London is one of the largest city-based Instagram accounts in the world and I am proud to be part of a dynamic team of people who work to bring all that is wonderful about this magical city to its 2.1million followers on Instagram.
@Creatingforgood is a collective of London-based creative. We raise money through workshops, individual tutoring, partnerships and special events; giving 100% of all proceeds to charitable organisations which focus on providing skills to empower marginalised people and communities to secure a more sustainable future.
Get in touch with me.