Faire la grasse mat’

Grasse Mat‘Faire la grasse matinée’ is the delightful way the French have of describing the art of sleeping in – having a lie in, lazing in bed or pillow surfing. Whatever you call it, fat mornings are my absolute favorite thing to do.

La grasse mat as it’s called for short is what you do on Sunday mornings, when you’ve been up all night partying, or when you just want to hide in bed of a morning rather than get up and face the world. Or, if you’re like me, whenever you get the chance.

I don’t actually ‘sleep in’ per se anymore. All I can manage is an extra hour of zzz’s, maybe two, after my usual waking time. Which means that instead of waking up at the crack of my –, as my husband so elegantly puts it, I awake at a time most normal people consider early. He, on the other hand, is capable of sleep-a-thons that go on far beyond my dreams. It’s a gift.

But just because I can’t sleep doesn’t mean I don’t enjoy a good lie in. With coffee, croissants, books, blogs, writing, to-do lists, travel arrangements – you name it, I do it while lounging in bed. Daily I give thanks to Steve Jobs for the invention of the MacBook Air. After a while I may even nod off again for a little nap. A play within a play as it were. It is the ultimate indulgence.

For a morning person, I certainly seem to spend a lot of time in bed.

How about you? Do you enjoy sleeping in or are you the ‘up and at ’em’ type?


  1. cheergerm · May 28, 2015

    I am taking ‘fat mornings’ and running with it, straight back to bed Mrs F! I love a Sunday (only possible day) lie in, even an hour more sleep than my early waking up annoying family, is a joy. Husband will bring a spot of breakfast, the papers, I have my IPad…all is right with the world. Great post.

    • MELewis · May 28, 2015

      Grasse mat’s are even more brilliant when you only get to enjoy them in small doses. And it’s only two days until Sunday. Merci, Cheerie!

  2. davidprosser · May 28, 2015

    Blimey, 7.00 am is major lie-in.
    xxx Massive Hugs Mel xxx

    • MELewis · May 28, 2015

      Well it would be for someone who gets up almost before he’s gone to sleep. 😉 Biggest bises xx

  3. A.PROMPTreply · May 28, 2015

    Fat mornings are lovely. I do wish I could enjoy more of them! I’m up way too early and then nodding off after a few hours. Even at the weekend, I still can’t seem to convince my body/mind to indulge and sleep longer! Really wish I could….I love the image of coffee, croissants, and a good read while still abed!

    • MELewis · May 28, 2015

      The only cure for that’s a nap! My second-favorite thing and a lifesaver when you’ve had a too-short night. Thanks for your comment!

  4. wanderingcows · May 28, 2015

    Lying in is the loveliest indulgence. I don’t sleep hours & hours either. But I while away the time reading and listening to podcasts, and if I’m lucky I’ll dose back again.

    • MELewis · May 29, 2015

      Like so many of life’s finer things, it’s quality rather than quantity that counts. Merci wandering one!

  5. Mél@nie · May 29, 2015

    I’m a morning person, I must sleep about 5-6h-max/night, je suis une petite dormeuse et je ne fais jamais la grasse matinée… 🙂 so, I do NOT spend a lot of time in bed with a few pleasant exceptions: I know you can read my mind… 😉

    • MELewis · May 29, 2015

      I read you loud and clear, dear Mélanie. And although not my propos here, I can only concur! 😉

  6. Dana · May 29, 2015

    A mixture of both! Your version sounds like my cup of tea!

    • MELewis · May 29, 2015

      Coffee or tea…you have to take an à la carte approach to these things. 😉

  7. BigLizzy · May 29, 2015

    Great post, sweet Mel!

    “Fat Mornings”. HA! I dearly love how the French make nearly everything a metaphor. Alas, my sweet friend. Like you, I rarely, if ever, sleep in. Hell, who am I kidding? I don’t sleep. Thank you, menopause. But, back in the day, when I was in my 20s, I could sleep nearly to noon on the weekends.

    Now, I’m up at 6 am, even on weekends, and even if I have not slept.I am not a morning person. I’m way more of a night owl, so it’s a struggle to subvert my tendencies. I do it, however, because I telecommute for a tech company and I work with global (read: India) teams. I need to overlap with various timezones. Yay.

    Your description of a “lie in” seems like a very reasonable alternative. I’ll have to make that a part of my paradigm at least once per month. Great idea, mon ami! Bises!

    • MELewis · May 29, 2015

      Oh dear, menopause is an international language with its own set of challenges. I can totally relate. On the other hand, while a morning person I am no night owl and turn into a pumpkin after 9 pm. Either way, you should definitely not be burning the candle at both ends. Sleep deprived we may be, but nothing can stop us from enjoying some extra ‘me’ time. Once a month for la grasse mat’ is a good start if that’s all you can manage, Lizzy, but I think you deserve a lot more. Hope you can put your off-shore team on hold from time to time and give it a try! Bises xxx

  8. mindfulexpat · May 31, 2015

    I love fat morning! But I think I’m more like your husband — I can easily sleep till noon if I’m not disturbed. 🙂

    • MELewis · May 31, 2015

      Lucky you! Long may it last…;)

  9. Lily Lau · May 31, 2015

    I wish France adopts me soon too 😀

  10. jackiemallon · June 3, 2015

    Oh ditto. I enjoy them–or at least the idea of them–but am quite lame at actually carrying them out. My husband and friends can lie till all hours. I manage 9 am. But I do make up for it with an afternoon nap, which might actually be more satisfying in the long run. Yes, I think I’ll take my naps over “Faire la grass” and leave the sleep ins to the pros!

    • MELewis · June 3, 2015

      Oh, now faire la sièste, that’s a whole other post! Why not both? Life is too short (and perhaps sometimes too long) to spend it all awake. 😉 Cheers, Jackie!

  11. Maison Bentley Style · June 4, 2015

    We did this for the first time on Sunday after 8 years and a rather boozy party…the first time bit being we set up a film for the kids..then set up a film for us (Birdman..much anticipated) and then proceeded to dribble and snore through the whole thing..without being disturbed once! Magic! xxx

    • MELewis · June 4, 2015

      Well, kids do have this way of interfering with the grasse mat but I like your film approach. I hope you enjoyed Birdman more than we did (although presumably the snoring is not a good sign). After all the hype, we could not make head nor tail of it!

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