I can’t believe how hard it was to publish a new post after all that time away from my beloved blog. I was sooooo eager to publish something good, I had sooooo many photos and an unbelievable amount of work (photography, recipes development projects, of course my business Tricotin.com and last but not least fix up the house after 5 weeks of abandonment) that I was totally paralysed.
I decided to prioritise cold-bloodedly all the tasks in front of me and I put my family and its nest (my war-zone of a house) first, then my money-generating projects and jobs and then my private photography and poor Flo Show came at the end!
You probably won’t believe that I brought back exactly: 14.425 photos from France! I look at these folders in my Lightroom and wonder where to start! Which day should I talk about? Where? Paris? Burgundy? What? Megan Morton extraordinary Paris Excursion? My family gatherings?
And what about all the amazing moments I haven’t had the time to talk about before I left such as the unforgettable Cookbook project in the bush with the dream team: Luisa Brimble, Annabelle Hickson, Lean Timms, Megan Trousldale and Sarah Glover. I can’t wait to show you the book we shot and some of the thousands of photos I took in this enchanting place about 11 hours’ drive from Grays Point…
But back to these Summer holidays in Burgundy where I spent a few weeks this French summer, to see my family, my friends, attend my (not so) little brother’s wedding and work too. I only brought my youngest, Léonore, with me as the other two couldn’t leave school for 5 weeks. This little rascal who refused to speak French since she was born, despite the fact that it’s the only language I speak at home, needed this trigger to start using her mother tongue, finally… Now she is totally fluent and speaks to me only in French. I’m so happy about it!
She spent her days helping both her grand-parents, Papili and Mamina, in the garden, in the house and particularly in the kitchen and dining room where she set the table, prepared the daily coffee (toute seule) and took part of the cleaning up.
We arrived on August 16th and left on September 20th. The weather was glorious during our whole stay. It was magical. The downfall was the severe draught that France went through which nearly dried the well providing the water on my parents’ property.
Leaves started to fall early. The feeling was half summery and autumnal.
My parents’ property is made of a main house and 3 large farm buildings. When I was a kid, it was my grand-parents’ holiday house and before that it was my great-grand-parents’. The farm ceased to function as such when I was a baby. I never really knew the smell of the animals and the huge amount of mud my Dad remembers from his childhood. Nowadays, it’s a pretty sight with a beautiful garden and a simple accommodation for passing friends or family who want a bit of independence during their holidays.
It still serves as a base for my Dad to manage the woods, garden and buildings. He has his tractors in there and a massive tool shed, a place to store the logs for Winter, stalls for his horse Bibi and a crazy workshop full of vintages pieces, machines and giant spider webs.
But I will keep a few photos for later posts.
The main house is situated next to the three farm buildings and nestled in the middle of 80 hectares of forest which my Dad carefully manages and maintains.
My parents’ veggie patch is located near the farm buildings. It produces an enormous amount of vegetables, fruits and berries. We went on a daily harvest to make sure that everything was turned into jams, jellies, preserves and beautiful meals.
Dad goes from one place to another with his push bike equipped with a bucket in case he needs to bring back apples, tools or a lost hedgehog.
This year the apple harvest was close to nothing at all. There was a sort of biblical caterpillar attack which ravaged the leaves and buds in the Spring time. Only very rare and poorly looking specimen managed to grow. It’s a bit of a catastrophe for Dad’s yearly cider production of about 300 bottles, for his private use only.
He will have to buy cider apples to his neighbours and friends.
Dad didn’t want to take care of bees because he was very intolerant to bee stings and to him the pain and massive swollen limbs were too high a price to pay. But my brothers Louis and Pierre decided otherwise and started by gathering beekeeping equipment from garage sales and Dad, after a few years and successful harvests, started to get hooked. Then when my brothers got a busy life and couldn’t attend to the hives as much as they should have, Dad had to take over. Now he has 30 books on the subject and has become a bit of an apiary geek buying crazy bee feeders, blockers and a motor for his manual extractor.
The daily harvest is a family affair and Léonore was very excited to carry the basket and help pull out the big carrots or choose which pumpkin was going to go next. This one was 8 kilos!!
On the day I took all these photos, the light was strange, and it created deeper greens, darker blacks and an overall strong contrast which I loved.
This is a beautiful euphorbia.
Dad’s little helper always ready to fix up Bibi the horse’s paddock. On the right is a hop plant which Mum planted to make Wendell (my husband and home brewer) happy
These 5 weeks have been a permanent “show and tell” for little Léonore.
My grand-father planted this very rare and beautiful tree.
Collecting acorns to plant more oaks.
These little guys are vivid childhood memories for me. They look gross and pretty at the same time. If you touch them, they leave an orange dye which is super hard to get rid of. It was a funny trick to play to the city kids :)
I bought this waterlily when I was about 22. It was a ridiculous little plant with one leaf. Now it’s thriving in the fish pond. The old well on the right is still used with an electric pump to provide water for the whole house.
So this is my mini photo report on my Summer holidays in Burgundy. I will keep on publishing photos from my French trip and my Australian adventures too. Stay tuned!!