PEACE AND TRANQUILITY

P6770708I wanted to make a feast. I had an insane urge to cook and create and make everything homely and perfect. Why?  Probably because I’ve been away more than I’ve been home this past month, and apart from the Auvergne there haven’t been breaks or holidays, long or short. It’s just been a long litany of hectic days away, tennis, business, children, and anything else you can think of. I just haven’t been home. So often have I left the house at 6.00am or 7.00am and returned around 9.00pm. Roddy has held the fort quite perfectly, obviously, usually accompanied by at least one or more of our children. But I’ve been on the road with the others; I have driven more kilometres than I dare to count and let’s just say I am a dab hand at filling up with diesel, again and again and again! Read more

My Birthday Surprise

IMG_5148It’s been one of those weeks, when you leave the house at 7.00am and don’t return until 8.00pm, day after day. Sporting events with the children have taken me up and down the autoroute three times in as many days, and I’ve had plenty of more local goings-on to contend with as well.  I’m not quite sure I remember the last time I did something in the garden, let alone the house! But, when the children sprung the most incredible birthday surprise on me I know all the travel and long hours are terribly worthwhile. Read more

French Contentment, Where Less is More

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Simplifying is all the rage now.

When we first moved to France, one of the things Roddy and I were looking forward to most was living a slightly simpler way of life. Not because we had read the latest magazine articles and wanted to be up to date, but because we both firmly believed that it was the way we wanted to raise our family and live our lives.  Read more

France Through the Eyes of Children

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Animals learn by imitation and so it goes for our species – children copy their parents. Roddy and I are never without a camera, and gradually it seems to be that neither are our children, and the way they are documenting their lives is fascinating. Along with iPhones and iPads, they are also using proper cameras, both their own and ours, and as a result I thought today I’d share with you how they see France through their eyes. All of the photos here are theirs, reflecting what they see and think. Here Gigi recently happened to be in Paris, lucky girl! Read more

Always Look on the Bright Side

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Sometimes I feel a little like this old shutter, a little worn around the edges, but I’m still hanging in there, strong and determined. Do you ever get days and weeks when you feel as if you are being pulled in every direction? Read more

The Perfect Picnic

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A warm, sunny spring weekend is the perfect excuse to pack up a picnic basket and enjoy the great outdoors. Whether you set out on a long hike, find a sheltered spot on the beach, drive to a local park or simply lay out a blanket in your garden, a picnic done well can be pure bliss. Read more

The Simplicity of Food

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For me, growing and cooking are inextricably linked. I am a firm believer in the importance of understanding where our food comes from and how it is grown. Perhaps it is my farming background but I feel it is necessary for both us and our children to realise what goes into growing food in order to fully appreciate what is in front of us on the table. Read more