Pages

www.simply-chateau.com

vendredi 24 octobre 2014

My Grandfather.................






I never knew my grandfather Albert as he died when I was just three years old.

As I was growing up there was always an old sepia photograph of him on the wall. He was sat astride his horse "Dolly" in his South Staffs regiment uniform during the Battle of the Somme.

 I remember my father telling me tales about him but never really paid much attention as I was a teenager and wartime stories were the last thing I wanted to hear. But I loved that old photo with him sitting so proud.

But the tale I really loved was about the old photograph.  Albert had lied about his age to join up in the early 1900s. So he was just 15 years old when he joined the South Staffs Regiment.

 Later he joined the machine gun corps nicknamed "The suicide squad" and adored the horse assigned to him, a dark bay mare called Dolly.

He and Dolly survived some fierce battles and at the end of the war he was distraught to have to leave her behind in France. Many of the army horses were despatched to Belgium for meat as it was not considered finacially viable to ship them back to the UK so he had to leave her behind.

A few months later he was in Walsall town centre and to his amazement he saw Dolly pulling a milk cart. He called her and she cantered across to him pulling the cart behind her! This huge 6 foot 3 guy cried like a baby.

That photograph had always hung in the hallway but when mum developed altzeimers she did some bizarre things with  items in her home and the photograph simply disappeared and has never been since since. Mum by then had no recollection of where it could be.

How I would love to have it today...............................

samedi 11 octobre 2014

Petite Paris.....

C'est Magnifique! This très chic Parisian pied-à-terre is cheaper than most hotel rooms in the French capital, costing just £69 for a night's stay.
The doll house maisonette, measuring just 215sq-ft is available to rent through Airnbnb 
The smart bijou home has a main living area on the ground floor, which includes a kitchen corner and tucked away on the first floor is a cosy double bedroom with an en-suite bathroom. 
 
Cosy: The house is located in the middle of four buildings and a 20-minute walk from Montmartre stationCute: The Parisian pied-à-terre is cheaper than most hotel rooms in the French capital, costing just £69 a night
Cute: The Parisian pied-à-terre is cheaper than most hotel rooms in the French capital, costing just £69 a night.
Cosy: The house is located in the middle of four buildings and a 20-minute walk from Montmartre station
The petite property is situated in a charming paved courtyard in the city, at the foot of Montmartre on Rue des Martyrs. 
 
 
The charming little house is on a street filled with bakeries, chocolateries, restaurants, cafes and bars.



Simple but effective: Tucked away on the first floor is a cosy double bedroom with an en-suite bathroom
Simple but effective: Tucked away on the first floor is a cosy double bedroom with an en-suite bathroom
Bright: The smart bijou home has a main living area on the ground floor, which includes a kitchen corner
Bright: The smart bijou home has a main living area on the ground floor, which includes a kitchen corner
Attracting the attention of gourmets, the Rue des Martyrs street has become the foodie artery of the bohemian neighborhood, which has been recently dubbed SoPi (for South of Pigalle).
The street goes straight up Montmartre Hill, primarily known for the white-domed Basilica of the Sacré Cœur on its summit.
Arty: According to the property's AirBnB listing, French Impressionist Degas had his last studio on the very same street at number 37 on the fourth floor
The house is located in the middle of four buildings and is a 20-minute walk from the Montmartre subway station.   
According to the property's AirBnB listing, French Impressionist Degas had his last studio on the very same street at number 37 on the fourth floor. Van Gogh is also rumoured to have lived on the same street. 

  
How wonderful is this?!!!Bon weekend mes belles
xxx

mardi 7 octobre 2014

Wings.............

I flew home with a first this weekend!!!








I found wings.........what more do I need to say!!!

An absolute first for me to find a pair!

oooh la la.......................

jeudi 2 octobre 2014

Take that Monsieur!




We live in the middle of nowhere on tiny silent lanes and I love it. However twice a day mayhem takes over.

At 12 noon a Monsieur will rush home for his two hour lunch and then at 1.55 he will dash back to work filled with a 4 course feast and various amounts of wine.

Today whilst returning to the chateau from the patisserie a battered old farmers van approached us at full speed in the middle of the road. Mark was driving so he pulled as far into the hedge as possible and stopped expecting the other driver to slow down and move over also.

But "non" the monsieur continued at full speed and took off both his and our wing mirrors. 

As the mirror was ripped off on my side I got out to inspect the damage, Monsieur stopped some way up the road and did not get out but just sat there. 

I picked up both the wing mirrors and walked up to see him sitting there with a very red mottled wine infused face. 


I told him politely that he should drive more slowly on these tiny lanes to which he told me that women should not be allowed to drive.

Wrong answer monsieur....I advised him of various things including the fact that I was not even driving!

 With that turned I on my heels and threw his wing mirror over the hedge into a freshly manured field.

Don`t mess with me monsieur I have a baguette and I am not afraid to use it!

Calming down as we speak mes belles

xxxxxx






jeudi 25 septembre 2014

The treasure in the sack....

In amongst the recent attic clearance was a heavy filled hand-loomed linen sack with a drawstring. I couldn`t wait to get it back to look inside......



 I wasn`t disappointed.....



reams of hand made 18th century parchment paper.

Large pages of tactile creamy parchment. 



Were they bound for a bookmaker or a notaires clerk who would sit by candle light and scribe with his quill and pot of ink?



I am listing some of the reams tonight. Such a wonderful find and amazing old paper for any period projects.

Will you write by twinkling candlelight too?

A la prochaine mes belles
xxx

jeudi 18 septembre 2014

A mystery in the village....



We all stood in silence at the village war memorial in the lashing rain watching as our new mayor  performed a tree- planting ceremony. This new, large addition situated on the outskirts of the village was to commemorate the American soldiers who had lost their lives here in Normandy following D-Day in June 1944

All seemed to be going well; a number  of  'monsieurs' assisted the Mayor to plant the new tree whilst quite a few 'madames' stood huddled together picking fault with their work muttering under their breath "it's not straight",  "it needs a bigger hole",   etc, etc.

There then followed a celebration in the village hall - and the  wine flowed. A good time was had. All was well with the world.

But.................the next morning - tragedy.

The tree had completely disappeared!!!

Had it been stolen?

Did someone not like the new mayor?

Did someone fancy a new tree on their driveway?

Was it only on loan!

I shall keep you updated with any news.

"Treegate" is now well under way!

A la prochaine mes belles
xxx




mardi 16 septembre 2014

To whom it may concern.....




I am still working my way through the boxes from the attic clearance and have just unpacked an old chemist pharmacie bottle filled with a strange blue powder that showered all over me.

Should I expire before teatime can someone please feed Sir Digbert for me?

However if I have two heads and can speak in tongues.......run!!!!

Hopefully .....a la prochaine mes belles

xxxx

dimanche 14 septembre 2014

Just let me truffle.....

A wonderful house call yesterday brimming with 18th and 19th century treasures.










I shall be starting to photograph and list it tomorrow but for today I am simply in heaven truffling through the boxes.

Sir Digbert is fine and my pumpkin is growing, so all is well at the chateau!!

A la prochaine mes belles
xxxx

samedi 13 septembre 2014

And you think I am demented?

Received today a little note from a recent guest at a dinner party......


Dear Countess

Thank you so much for the lunch yesterday it was simply
 chateau delicious. I especially loved the steak pie, that was a true feat of culinary excellence. The surroundings
 in the chateau marquee were equally impressive. The 
structure appeared at first sight to be quite simple, but
once inside one was cast into a world which illustrated the opulence and confidence of chateauesque entertaining. The table, so loving laid, had a delicious flowing sculptural quality with its inventiveness and execution of display. The whole effect was one of sumptuous opulence, with a touch of playful frivolity. The cutlery and porcelain, so painstakingly arranged had a stunning repertory of symmetry and style, I straightaway noticed a sense of movement, almost liquid in the way each element teased the eye when viewed along the length of the banqueting table. The food, of course was splendid, each course in its own way celebrating the triumph of French chateau cuisine. with, at times, an English posh pub twist- very clever that.  When finally the desert arrived, the ice cream sundae said it all- a broad statement of change from our normal simple food to the very best that the top echelons of society can offer. In short, the nosh was great- thanks


...and now you know why I am daft! It`s my friends fault!!!

vendredi 12 septembre 2014

A huge relief...

                                   



It has been a frantic couple of days as my beloved Sir Digbert Fanshaw Brownshaw had to have surgery.

At 14 years old there was a risk for him but it had to be done.

Needless to say I cried all the way to the surgery to deliver him, cried all day he was away and then cried with relief when we collected him! Yes I know........get a grip woman!



He is full of stitches but so perky you wouldn`t believe!

That`s my boy.

Have a wonderful weekend mes belles.

I have a house call to do that promises to be full of treasures....I shall keep you posted/

A la prochaine

xxxx