9.28.2009

My heart is in France

I love my life in Houston, but today, my heart is in France.

My first trip to France was with my mom the week after I graduated from high school. A reward for my fluency in the French language. I remember hanging out in the hotel lobby until the wee hours of the morning talking to the bellboy (le chasseur) just so I could use the language I had studied for so long. My mom and I walked all over Paris for ten days, never even visiting the obvious Tour Eiffel and L'Arc de Triomphe (which I'm pronouncing in my best French accent as I type!), because there were so many other incredible things to see and do! Thanks for that fabulous first trip, Mom! I've never been the same.

My next three trips to France were to Provence. L O V E. Oh, my! Provence stirred my soul. It is the only place I've ever been where I knew was absolutely MADE to be there. Maybe not made to live there (for now anyway) because I'm a total homebody, but made to be there and soak in every bit of inspiration Provence had to offer - the lavender and rosemary, open-air markets, fresh cheeses, antique linens, hand embroidery, leather books, wire baskets, mountain top villages, simple decor, the colors of French country homes...oh my goodness, the stone farmhouses with their impossible to match color palettes, the weathered blue-gray shutters, the doors, the iron work...I could go on and on...and I probably will in future posts!

But as much as I'd like to keep writing, good photos are worth a thousand words, so here are a few of my favorites from my month-long 2003 and 2005 trips to Provence. If you've bought cards from me, you'll probably recognize a few!





I actually remember taking every single one of these pictures, but the ones where I can close my eyes and remember every detail are these next three from a teeny, tiny village that even the most frequent French travelers don't seem to know about: Cliousclat. I love to roll that name off my tongue with my best French accent...Cliousclat!




This last one is my personal favorite because I can close my eyes and remember the scent of those white climbing roses on a perfect, blue-sky day. This was actually a store front. Don't you love the baskets? And notice the wine bottle holder in the bottom left. Reproductions and originals are really popular right now (this was from 2003). The card with this image on the front is one of my best sellers.

I have several of these images framed and hanging in my home as 11x14 fine art prints. I never tire of looking at them (if only I could step inside!) and always receive compliments. If you'd like one, let me know! They are limited edition, signed and numbered.

I'll be back with LOTS more French inspiration along the way, so stay tuned!

1 comment:

  1. Now seriously, it's crazy the more I'm reading your blog, the more I'm loving it. Part of the reason we moved to Napa Valley was that we wanted to move to France (fell in love with it in 98 and took our oldest son there in 2002) but knew the red tape and bureaucracy would eat us alive not to mention the fact the we AREN'T fluent by any means and learning a new language with two children in tow sounded more than stressful. But NV lifestyle is so similar to Europe that it made sense to move here instead. But your photos of Provence (our favorite region) stirred my heart and we are waiting for the day we can take both of our kids back there. So many great memories and I can't wait to make more. My oldest was watching me type one of the other comments to you and said "Do you even know her?" When I answered "no", I pointed out the C.S. Lewis quote above to him. So, thanks, new friend for starting off my California Monday with lots of heart-smiles.

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"Friendship is born at that moment when one person says to another: What! You too? I thought I was the only one." ~ C.S. Lewis

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