Posts Tagged With: Living the French dream

Back in the blog business…

Well hello, It’s been a while, well almost three years to be exact.

Now where to begin, mmm well i don’t have time to fill you in on the last three years, but why not  check out our instagram and facebook pages to catch up.

When we launched our B&B website, almost three years ago it came with its own blog which is why i stopped publishing on this original blog site. But due to new EU rules and regulations, that if I’m honest i don’t understand and am not inclined to research we cant use a blog on our website. So here we are back on our original wordpress site and i must say its nice to be back.

Quick question, with the rise of instagram and other social media sites, dose anyone read blogs anymore? I guess you do otherwise you wouldn’t be reading this, but what do you think? Let me know by letting me know via the poll below.

Its a very unusual January here in the Tarn, mild days and mostly sunny, although as i write this post we have just had a torrential downpour which has sent Kev running for cover in one of the barns, he’s digging trenches in the garden.

Our garden is thinking it’s the start of spring, the usual early spring flowers are beginning to appear, daff’s, hyacinths and other such like bulbs are all sprouting. And my roses are growing at an alarming rate, as is the mint, i even have flowers on my strawberry plants. Mother Nature what are you doing to us? all will be lost if we have a bad frost.

 

We have been taking advantage of the good weather by digging trenches and laying foundations for walls that will run along our hedge, this is part of a much bigger project of creating a new driveway and securing the garden to keep Barnaby from chasing our guests cars, more on that as it progresses.

January has also been very busy with B&B guests, all of whom are visiting Gaillac for the third and last year of the Chinese lantern festival; alas it has been snatched from them by a much bigger city.

        

Now when i heard that Gaillac would be hosting the Chinese lantern festival three years ago i have to admit i was very sceptical and even had a wry smile, how could a tiny town put on anything that grand? And i must admit i didn’t bother visiting it, but some of my friends did and said it was very good . In fact the local tourist board had a great time boasting that 240K people visited over the space of December and January 2017. So last year Kev and I together with family and friends paid it a visit, it was spectacular, so i had to eat my words and congratulate the town. Not only was it extremely well executed but it was also very well organised, which in Southern France is a miracle, as most people are so laid back when it comes to event organisation. This year they are predicting over 500k visitors, so it will go out on a big high. but what will they do next year i wonder.

We had a lovely email the other day from a travel website called Travel Myth  [www.travelmyth.com ] Apparently we are listed in the top 30 accommodations in Albi and the surrounding areas. Its always nice to be recognised, thanks Travel Myth.

And what have Barnaby Pickles and Miel Miaow been up to over the last three years, well apart from eating, sleeping, having walkies and lots of cuddles?

Barnaby has mostly been relaxing as you can see from the photo below.

And Miel Miaow still won’t use the cat flaps, instead demanding to be let in through the windows.

Arghh its good to be back in blog land.

Until next time have a great weekend everyone.

Px

Categories: General posts, Living in France | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

The beauty in winter

The last few days here in Fayssac have been bitterly cold, its the first time mother nature has wrapped her frosty arms around us and cloaked everything in wintery white.

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The mornings have been starting out with a sunny glow, but within minutes the fog has been rolling in creating misty swirls in the valley and continuing its journey until you can hardly see anything.

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Im not really a winter person, although i do love a log fire and large brandy to help keep the cold away, for me summer is my season, but if you look there, really is so much beauty to be seen in this Narnia season.

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The sleeping trees and decaying plants are given a dusting of frost making them shimmer.

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There are picture postcard scenes to be viewed everywhere.

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The ice particles bring spiders webs to life, showing all the incredible intricacies of their spun webs.

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I think i may be a little obsessed with them, but why not when they are this beautiful?

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Colour still manages to pierce through the frost giving us vivid sparks to brighten our walks.

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The dogs love this weather, they don’t seem to feel the cold, they revel in it bonding and springing about, except when they are patiently waiting for you to throw a toy.

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So my friends this year is drawing to a close, and what a year it has been, we have had some amazing times, and have so much to be thankful for. There have also been many shocks along the way and we have lost so many amazing people, musicians, authors, celebrities, stars and many loved ones.

But we must look forward and not glance back for that is the only way to go….

From all of us here at Maison Mûrier we wish you a very

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Summer gifts as the season begins to shift

Summer here in Fayssac has been really wonderful this year, plenty of hot and sun drenched days  and the odd crazy storm to cool things down,  entertaining us with illuminating light shows. We have had lots of fabulous guests that have made our summer abundant with fun, laughter and great memories that will last with us for a very long time.

It has been so hot down here with little rain, the trees have already begun to loose their leaves making us realise that autumns calling.

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The ground is so dry that cracks in the earth are the norm creating an amazing motorway of patterns.

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The sunflowers that recently blazed their yellow glow over the country side are all now bowing their heads. They will be left until they are almost black, the farmers waiting for the seeds to be dripping with oil before they harvest them.

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But as we begin to notice the subtle changes, mother nature gives us some lovely gifts to help us on our way.

The wild damsons are laying heavy and luscious on the branches, they are inviting me to taste their warm and sweet flesh, whilst eating them the purple juice runs down my hands, there to be savoured later as i walk Barnaby Pickles in the evening glow of the sun.

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The blackberry bushes are also brimming with big bold berries, ill be picking these over the weekend for a jam making session.

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Summers not over yet! but the autumn hints are there, so we have to fill up on the sunshine and warmth ready for the cold winter nights.

Are you all noticing the changes or is it just me?

Have a lovely weekend everyone and heres to more warm sunny days before Autumn rolls in.

Categories: Living in France | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Sizzling Summer Sun

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Phew its been so hot here in Fayssac over the last few weeks, so I’m happy to report summer has officially started. The kids have broken up from school and France has begun to shut down for July and August, mind you its not really open for business most of the rest of the time, which is probably why I like it here so much.

We attended our first apero concert of the summer at Perye Rose last Wednesday. It was so lovely to see the vineyard again and the lovely owner Astrid; she and her sons make you feel so welcome. Friends gather, drink wine, listen to music, eat great food and catch up on all that’s happened over the last week.

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The views are stunning.

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And the sunsets are beautiful.

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Back at Maison Murier we have been busy working in the loft creating new bedrooms and bathrooms [blog post to follow on that], and in the garden we have been creating a roundabout in our driveway.

Our dear cousin Sheri bought us an olive tree, and we have used it as a feature in the centre.

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IMG_8242The fields are awash with wild flowers and butterflies.

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And the sunflowers have started to flower in droves, creating a sea of bright yellow, truly a site that should be experienced.

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Our first summer visitors have arrived to relax and soak up the suns rays.

Hello summer, don’t rush by too quickly.

Happy weekend everyone.

 

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Perfect Poppies

I know I’m bigging up Mother Nature a lot this week, and she does give us a lot to do in the garden but she also lends a welcome hand. Take this horrible pile of rubble we have at the back of the house, [we have been using it as a dumping ground until we get around to landscaping it] What does she do to help she sends loads of poppy seeds in the wind to help cover it up and make it look pretty, well for a time anyway.

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And a few giant poppies are thrown in for good measure.

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Thanks MN, now if we could just have a word about all the acacia tree blossoms you are dropping in my pool……

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Wow, how the garden has grown, in only a week!!!

I have only been away working in the UK for one week, and i just cant believe how quickly things in the garden change, i think mother nature has had a red bull or two.

Like the Uk the weather has been bizarre with sun, rain and high winds, i guess the plants like this combination, although i don’t.

The tree were only just in blossom bud when i left and now they have burst forth and are looking and smelling beautiful.

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The chives are showing off.

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The geraniums are giving the chives a run for their money.

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Poppies are popping up everywhere, even in piles of old rubble. The colour is so vivid.

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And our roses beet the rest to first place, and they smell so sweet and heady, i love the smell of fresh roses after it has rained.

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The sun made a welcome appearence and so did our pool technician, he was most welcome as we thought he wouldn’t be able to come until June.

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Our pool liner had a rip in it at the end of last season, our pool company repaired it but said we had to have a new liner fitted, but this could only be done in the warmer months, so we have been waiting all winter for a warm sunny spring day to get it changed. The pool technician came last Monday but only managed to get the job half done as the rain came. The next appointment was June, but as mentioned he popped by on Thursday and finished the job.

mmm… now i just have to fill it!!!

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Why the Henry hoovers i hear you ask? Well they suck the air out from the pool liner whilst its filling with water, i know weird but it works, and Henry dosnt mind helping out.

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Have a lovely weekend everyone.

 

 

 

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Lofty Days

Last week we started to insulate the loft above Marion and Ian’s House. There is a large hole at the end of the room which is actually access from one of the barns, this is handy but the wind blows a gale through it so we will put a door covering it which will be a fire escape.

First job, lay the sound proofing material

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Then we cover the floor with MDF boards to give us a clean flat surface.

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Exterior walls are insulated and the door is installed so no more gales…

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As ever Barnaby is on hand to help out, well give cuddles…

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Next job Sanding the beams and digging holes in the walls for the electric cables….

Mmm sounds like dirty work…

 

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Almond Blossom and Blue Skies

Mother Nature is continuing to confuse us all, including the trees, flora and fauna.  Our already warm winter has heated up over the last couple of days with barmy February temperatures of 22degrees and at last a couple of days of blue skies and sunshine. All of this has excited the almond trees into bursting open with blossom, which is about three weeks too early.

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The blossoms are beautiful and have a heady sweet scent.

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Back to grey skies and rain for the next week, oh well i have to keep remembering that its only February.

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Sunny Sunday

After a week of grey clouds and cold winds, Mother Nature has given us a lovely sunny Sunday, what a lovely way to end the week.

You can feel the heat of the sun on your skin, it’s a tonic. And it looks like the temperatures due to rise over the next week a giddy 17degrees by next weekend.

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Almond Harvesting

I can’t beleive I’m already hearing the crunch of almond shells under my feet as I tend the potager. Was it really 8 months ago that I posted photos of the beautiful almond blossoms? That crunch tells me its time to start harvesting; I’m a lazy harvester and like to leave all the hard work to mother nature, who usually uses a nice big storm to shake the trees and send the almond shells hurtling towards the ground. Said storm happened last week and the recent sun and wind has dried the land and the shells nicely, so perfect time to gather them.

We have four almond trees on our land: a large one hovering over the potager hence the noise underfoot as I tend it. Two on the other side of the front garden and a small one overlooking the pool area, so plenty to harvest.

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The almonds have fallen and have dried off in the sun, helped by the warm winds.

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I have a little system for harvesting the almonds, firstly i gather them, then take all the husks off, then you have to check them over to see if any bugs have started to bore holes in the shells, then shake them to see if the fruit has died and separated from the shell, lastly pop them into a net bag.

The last few steps are done sitting in my lovely old garden chair….

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The rewards of my hard work a nice big bag full of almonds, this is just the first harvest off one tree.

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mmm how many more trees to harvest, seemed a good idea at the time…….

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