Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Festival of Lights

I'm just now recovering from our fun filled weekend in Natchitoches, Louisiana. Last weekend opened the 80th Christmas Festival, my sister and her family met us there to celebrate the occasion.

If you've never heard of or been to Natchitoches, LA, (pronounced Nak-a-tish) it is the oldest French Settlement in Louisiana and the town where my great-grandfather was born and raised. It is also famous for the filming of Steel Magnolia as discussed in my previous post on my Louisiana heritage.

After the fabulous firework showcase the entire streets and town along Cane River lights up with all kinds of creative lighting. There are over 250,000 people everywhere, live band, dancing, live alligators (kids take pictures with them like they are Santa), food, food and more food! And, the best Bed and Breakfast you ever want to experience! Some Bed & Breakfast and hotels are booked in advance up to seven years. Yes, it's that exciting and something I wish everyone could experience before leaving this earth.

I really love and enjoy the spirit of Christmas and I was all over the streets jumping and skipping like I had reverted back to childhood....some of my most awesome memories as a child are from Christmas!!! Oh and it was much colder than normal which made it more enjoyable, we got to cover up, sip on hot cocoa & coffee and snack on Funnel Cakes too!

Stay tuned for more, I'll be sharing our visit to the Cane River Creole National Historical Park, built c. 1820 along with several others. I learned even more about Creole History and we enjoyed picking pecans on the plantations. We almost didn't leave because "Beignet" (my hubby) pretty much asked the Plantation Guide 1001 questions.........you know how men can be when it comes to history! I felt like we needed to pay the poor guy, thank goodness he was up on the details. Posted by Picasa


Goodnapps said...

Wow! You look like a kid in a candy store.

CloudNine said...

Creyole have you read anything from this website?

I thought it was interesting to see your Maiden name included in this listing. I am not certain how correct this information is but this is what it esposes:

Many names of French Creole origin, like Soileau, Fontenot, and Fran├žois, are now widely considered Cajun. What do you think?

Culture and history are two things I am extremely passionate about. Ever since I can remember I have been drawn to the French language and as a result have taken seven years of it while most of my peers studied spanish...(I knew my material grandmother spoke patois but, I did not realize how much this influenced my decisions until adulthood) I really admire how much research you have done and it inspires me to dig deeper in my own rich hertiage!

Mahogany_Butterfly said...

Your hair is beautiful... I just spent an hour avoiding working on my finals going through your blog. I was natural until my senior year of high school than at the end of my fourth year of undergrad I decided to cut my relaxed hair off. I've been natural again for a year and a half. I'm still in love with the versatility of my hair but I do know that I want locs in the future. I've been researching which ones and so far sisterlocks seem the best for my hair texture and personal style. Maybe when I start my Ph.D program I'll begin a new journey with my hair as well. Thanks for the inspiration and I'll definitely continue reading your blog. Your daughter's hair is gorgeous as well and I wish I had had friends like her back when I was the only girl in school and at home without a relaxer.

Creyole's Sisterlock Exodus said...

Thanks ladies for your comments:

Thanks for the response and I could not access the link so I'm not sure what the information was explaining.

I know that my maiden name Fontenot was derived from the original French spelling Fonteneaux and that may be referring to the name change through out the years. There are so many definitions of Cajun, Creole and I just found out last week while visiting the Creole Plantations that some Creoles were also white and not just of mix black & white. The white Creoles were called Creole because they came over from Europe/Haiti and were not American. When they mixed with women of color, their off springs were then called Creole of color. Interesting and I plan to research more.

However, with that said our family member profess Haitian French because of my great grand father and they too were called Creole. Louisiana has such a mix of people that everyone black takes on the Creole name and most whites take on the Cajun name. I think this has all happened over the years of losing out history and the old folks are not passing on as much knowledge as they should.

I'm fortunate enough to have older relatives still living that can pass on names, pics and history from my family tree.

Anonymous said...

My blogger site is now back up...

Brenda said...

I've been to NO twice (once was my honeymoon!) and loved all the Louisiana history - very rich and exciting. It's very heartening that you have access to so much of your family history, keep it going. My Grandmother is 95 and, although in relatively good health, does not talk much about her youth in the Virgin Islands. Maybe next time I visit, I'll try to get her to open up more. And I'm glad you provided the pronunciation cuz I never would have gotten it!

Anonymous said...


Lalita Tademy, author of Cane River, has written a well received second novel called Red River. This book like Cane River will be based on her family history as it relates to the Colfax Louisiana Massacres of 1873. It has received solid reviews.

Creyole's Sisterlock Exodus said...

Wow!!! Thanks for the heads up I'll have to add that one to my Wish List!