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la puissance de dix


As I shared last week, Valentine's Day is a big deal in our household.  Scott had told me that for Valentine's Day this year, there was an experience to go along with our date, but I honestly had no idea what that meant.  Since it was 10 years ago that we spent our first Valentine's Day in Paris, Scott set up a tour of Charlotte which mimicked our weekend in Paris, calling it the Power of 10 (la puissance de dix). It was amazingly fun and beyond getting to reminisce about our first Valentine's Day a great opportunity to explore our new city! Check out what we did after the jump.

1) We saw Parisian design

We started our adventure at the Hearst Tower in uptown Charlotte.  The Hearst Tower is the 4th tallest building in uptown and has gorgeous art deco inspired design.  All of the brass railings and pieces were rescued from Au Bon Marche in Paris, a department store.

2) We visited churches

We first ventured down to the McColl Center for Visual Art which is a space that is in a converted church.  The space itself is absolutely gorgeous - the story goes that it was a multi-denominational church that was abandoned as the congregations spread out and the building fell into disrepair in the 80s, during which it served as a squatting place for the homeless in the area.  They started tearing the inside of the building apart and using it for kindling until one night when the building caught on fire.  The building stood as a shell in uptown for years until they begin converting it into an art space.  It's a stunning mix of old and new and you can even see areas where it brick is charred. 

3) We saw beautiful art

For our next stop we walked down to the Bechtler Museum of Modern Art.  The building was designed by Mario Botta and it's such a cool building.  I'm so excited to have this gem in our city; culture and arts are so important and I love that they are so readily available to the masses.

4) We saw birds....lots of birds

The story goes that as sat on the stairs of the Paris Opera House eating a snack, I threw some bread to a pigeon.  Scott warned me not to feed them and I flippantly said, "There's only 4!", but as things go with pigeons, they multiplied 10 fold and we ended up having to move spots due to over zealous pigeons.  There aren't many pigeons in Charlotte, but there is one, rather large and sparkly disco chicken.

disco chicken, firebird

4) We enjoyed French cafes

One of my favorite things to do in Paris is go to a cafe, grabbing some coffee and people watch.  After the Bechtler, we wandered over to Amelie's French Bakery for coffee and macarons (which were to die for).

6) And the french pastries


7) We went to the market

We popped on over to the 7th Street Public Market where we found a delightful wine shop and cheese shop.  We grabbed a bottle of malbec and some cheese and crackers and just sat and talked.  It seems like a mundane thing, but with a toddler and all sorts of other stuff, it's very rare that we actually get a chance to talk about non-life logistical items.  

8) We saw the city from a tower

As I mentioned in Friday's post, we spent the evening on the top of the Eiffel Tower.  With no Eiffel Tower in Charlotte, we headed up to Bentley's on 27.  Known for their stunning city views, it was great to looks out at the city below.  They were slammed for the holiday weekend, but let us take a gander out of one of their private rooms.

9) We ate a late dinner

In Paris, we found ourselves so involved in exploring, we rarely ate dinner before 11 pm.  Though we didn't eat that late (I actually got Scott to move up our reservations because I am an old woman and require food), we had a fantastic meal at Halcyon.  But let's be honest, I'm a fan of any place that serves their beverages in mason jars.

10) We took a taxi home

Our trip to Paris ended with us standing on the sidewalk outside of our hotel and Scott trying to convince me to drag my suitcase (which was the size of me) and myself (in heels) through the Parisian subway system to Charles de Gaulle airport.  Though easy to navigate, the Parisian subway system is not super conducive to trudging around in heels with a suitcase that weighs as much as you do so I took one look at him and told him that I'd be taking a taxi, that he was more than welcome to join me, but if not, I'd see him at the airport.  Scott seems to believe that's set the tone for our entire relationship, but I look at it fondly as a testament to our ability to give and take with each other.

I was truly blown away with not only how thoughtful the date was, but how much fun we had in Charlotte. If you happen to be in the city or come to visit, you should definitely check out any (or all) of the above!  Hope you & yours had a love-filled weekend!

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  1. Oh Chels!!! What an incredible night. I love that you did so many fun things that brought back great memories from 10 years ago.

  2. Chelsea, that is the sweetest Valentine's date!! Awww.. I got a little teary-eyed!


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