The stables

The Stable project

Finally, the time has come to show you all the «behind the scenes» on the Stable project. I absolutely loved every bit of this transformation. Stephanie managed to create a beautiful space for creativity and inspiration. One of the things I adore with Steph is her ability to envision absolutely anything. It wasn’t easy for me to picture a beautifully decorated art studio by looking at a dirty old stable filled with trash. Well done Steph.

Here are some pictures of the transformation:

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Grant built a bookshelf by using timber from one of the outbuildings

The studio after clearing all the rubbish and cleaning the floor with a pressure hose

One of the heaviest jobs was to move these stable dividers. We wouldnt have done it without the great M-Team, consisting of Grant, Ben, Percy, Ian and Gerry. Anything is possible when having an Aussie, Kiwi, South-African and Scott(man) on board.

I spray painted the walls which were very therapeutic

We also painted all the doors

We brought down all the art books from the attic, they were Stephanies fathers books which made the Studio feel very special

Grant made this cupboard to cover up the pipes on the wall, using only bits and pieces from the outbuildings.

From the art retreat…

I havent actually seen the last episodes since I´m in Norway visiting family. Did anyone see me naked on tv?? 🙈 Hehe

Marie

Hometown vibes

ON HOLIDAY

Hey, or «Hei» (in Norwegian)

It feels amazing to be back in Norway. I’ve only been here for 1 day, but time has gone by so quickly. So many to see and so little time.

I´m staying here until Friday and then I´m going to my Mom and her husband for the weekend. I´m really looking forward to seeing them all and to see their new house. I believe there are gingerbread houses involved too.

Sture is watching the birds.. my uncle and aunties dog. Cutest thing ever

Tomorrow I’m seeing my amazing friend Tiril again. She has come all the way from Lofoten and I can’t wait to see here. I’m taking her to my grandparents for lunch and then we’re going to spend the rest of the day catching up. There will be wine.

Hope you have a lovely day x

No bathroom for a week

HAPPY MONDAY

Hey.

I actually have 2 days off now, wow, how did that happen? Well, I’m making sure to enjoy them as much as possible. The workers for the bathroom is in our house today, so that means no bathroom for a week. Yes, I will be brushing my teeth in the kitchen sink from now on. All fun. However, I am looking forward to having a newly done bathroom, especially since we´re also adding a shower. Yay.

I’m currently just waiting for the washing to finish and then I will go out for a run. The weather is cold but pretty, should be fun.

Sourdough meringue from the kitchen

Gillian’s room at the moment. She started on the floor yesterday, so It won’t be long before the painting goes on the wall. It’s getting exciting.

I’m feeling much better now, much happier than last week. I talked to my friend Tiril for hours on the phone the other night and that did wonders. I’m seeing her when I go to Norway next week. Can’t wait.

 

 

Marie

I want to know everything

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More sanding

Hey,

Feel like I´ve been offline for a little while now. The days go by so quickly, which is good. Only 2 weeks until I´m back in Norway for a week! (yay). Work is going well, I really really enjoy the job and the team. I want to work all the time and I want to know everything. Don´t know why. Is it a Confidence-thing? Or is it my personality?

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I´m not as sad as I look. It´s just been a very busy and hectic month. Living in a renovation project will definetly challenge your mental state. Combine this with training and induction days + getting a virus, and you can easily feel a little overwhelmed. However, I feel humble and greatful for everything. Having that said, I´m looking forward to getting our heating installed. Haha

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Not much on my mind today, or maybe I have, I just don´t know what to say, or how to say it.

Marie

To the Cotswolds

SUNDAY

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Hello,

How are you today? Right now I´m in Steph´s apartment in London. We´ve been watching a movie and catching up tonight. We had an amazing day yesterday, first lunch at the Woodsman with Mike in Stratford-upon-aven and then back to Mike and Claude’s house in the Cotswolds. I absolutely loved yesterday. So much delicious food and beautiful surroundings. Makes me want to do loads of road trips around the Uk. It´s such a great country. Here is a few pictures from our day:

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a bar trolley..

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Mike showed us around in his restaurant. They only cook with wood ovens which makes the food experience very uniqe and appriciated

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Absolutely loved Mike and Claudes home. It made me want to get a house in the countryside with lots of dogs running around

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I´m going back to Bury tomorrow while Steph is going on a holiday.

Oh, I booked my flights to go home. Yes, home to Norway. I´m going in early November and I´m so excited. I really need to see my family.

Hope you have a great evening x

 

Marie

 

 

Meantime there is Autumn

Beauty_63be_Fotor

Hello,

I´m alive so don´t worry too much about the epic silence in here. Haha. I´ve been with my new job for a week now and I love it. Lots to learn of course, but it’s coming together. I can´t believe I´ve been here a month already. It´s gone so quickly.!  Yesterday, I worked in the kitchen, which was fantastic. I believe it´s so important to understand every aspect of a buisness if you want to run it well.

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Other than working I went to a memorable work party on Monday. It was the first one for the whole group. Lots of mingling and too much wine. I don´t drink much these days so it will be a while to next time.

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As you all might know, I became a vegetarian in February this year because I wanted to eat healthier. Become healthier. I´m confident to say that I have achieved that goal. Slowly but surely I have taken the step to eat cleaner, filling my meals with mostly vegetables, salads, nuts, grains, healthy oils, plant-based products, fruits, berries etc.. However, If I want something I will eat it. I don´t restrict myself in any way. I eat the way I do because I love it. I also run 3-4 times a week. I usually go every second day even if it´s just for 20-30 minutes. I love the way my body has become stronger. More empowered. More proud. Slimmer. More confident. Happier.

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So pretty

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At home, things are happening slowly. My room is still not done. The floors and the painting are still on hold, but hopefully, we will get to it soon. I really hope that I get into a proper routine soon. I don’t like not writing here, it´ts just been a little busy in my head lately. My camera is misbehaving and my bank account is down to zero. Haha. It´s that type of fun xx

Marie

 

It´s all coming together

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Hey you,

It´s so nice to see that you are still popping in here while it´s been quiet from me. I´ve just been enjoying my new life her in Bury. The weekend has been incredibly chilled but lovely. Gillian and I have done work in the house. Yesterday, we finished the sanding in my room and we also managed to paint the mist coat. It feels good to see the progress of our work. Next up is preparing the floor, sanding it and then painting the wall, woodwork and ceiling. Other than working I´ve also done some preps for my new job. Lots of forms to sign and pages to read. I love being prepaired so this last week have done wonders for my ego.

The week will be fairly interesting, I´m getting started in my new job. So eager to start! Painting my room (yay). I´m also going to Norwich to sort out my application for a National Insurance number. I love Norwich, so I´ll try to make the most out of the day. Maybe I will vistit a few favourite places.. Mine are the bicycle shop and the Rabbit. Do you have a favourite place in Norwich?

Hope your´e having a good Monday x

My latest food obsession + more

Hey Monday

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I´m slowly settling in. This weekend was chilled but also fun. Gillian and I went to this massive car boot sale yesterday. Apparently, this event only happens twice a year, in May and September. The event was arranged at the Melford hall. Some good bargains, but I must say that France is better. Hehe. Much cheaper. Well, anyways. I got some very random things, like linen bedding and a lampshade.. Here are some pictures from our day:

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Melford hall

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Gillian took me to the little village of Lavenham. A cute and historic little place, a must-go if you’re nearby. We had a coffee and lovely talk in the backyard of one of the tearooms.

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My latest food obsession, a big salad with spinach, pickled cabbage, almonds, beets hummus, olives ++. Yummy.

This week will be an exciting week. Gillian and I are going to focus on getting some work done on the house. I´m on sanding-duty all week. Hehe. Feels good to get this done before starting my new job next week. Oh, and the wifi-people arrives on Wednesday, along with a second-hand pink sofa. I´m thinking it´s time for Netflix… Recommendations are welcomed. Nothing scary, please.

Have lovely Monday

Marie

NEW JOB

Yay Saturday

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How are you today?

I´m feeling happy and excited. Bury is warm this week and I´ve actually been wearing summer clothes. I love the long summer and I hope autumn will be as pleasant too. Since we last spoke I´ve managed to get a job! YAY! After a few interviews here and there, and one job trial I´m done with my job hunt for now. I´m the new Assistant Manager for a boutique hotel here in Bury and I couldn’t be more grateful. I truly believe that this job will be a valuable stepping stone for my future plans of becoming a B&B owner myself one day. I`ve worked in the restaurant business for over a decade and It feels right to move into hospitality, while still being involved in the restaurant environment (the hotel has a high-level kitchen). My contract doesn’t start for another week witch gives me some time to study the menus and wine lists. I do like to be prepaired. Hehe.

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I´m spending the weekend reviewing my contract while also weeding the garden. I had a slow start with breakfast and a cup of tea in bed while reading my book (one of my favourite things to do). Later, I spent a few hours in the garden which was lovely.

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Oh, I wanted to show you this flower shop I´ve been following on Instagram. Their called the flower hut and I just love their little shop. I finally got to see it for the first time yesterday. Highly recommended if you’re ever in Bury. The cut flowers, interior and staff are superb.

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Right, I have some delicious olives to nibble on and a book to read tonight. Gillian is out with friends so I have the whole house for myself.

Marie

Back at Tinder + a new bank account!

Hello

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Thought I would pop in and say hello!

Bury-life is pretty good so far and I´m just spending my time settling in. I really like it here. I´ve been doing all sorts of things today, like opening a bank account and getting a library card. Haha. The job hunt is still ongoing but that’s fine. I want to take my time so that I´m sure to find something that I will enjoy doing. Other then appointments and errands I´ve also been stripping wallpaper from the lounge. Gillian has done most of the job, but we needed to do some last bits before the workers come tomorrow. They are sanding the walls and putting up boards/planks in my bedroom ceiling.

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I´m so grateful to be able to stay with Gillian, but also to help her with the renovations. I definitely want to do this myself one day, so learning different skills are a real bonus!

I´m spending the rest of the evening writing and reading a new book, I rented Lion by Saroo Brierley. Heard the movie was good. Have you read it? Tomorrow awaits more job-hunting and a Tinder date. Yes, I know. I was just looking and now I´m suddenly meeting up with someone. I´m not sure how I feel about it but I think it´s good to meet new people. Hehe.

Wish me luck,

Marie x

(Ps: I haven´t forgotten about my post about being a vegeterian, I´ve just been so busy lately)

Settled in Bury

Hello lovely

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I´m finally here. I´m so incredibly happy and grateful for my new start here in Bury. I already have a few ideas for new blog posts so stay tuned. I can´t wait to show you my life here. I thought I could start with my bedroom first. It´s a beautiful room with lots of light. The walls have just been plastered and I actually like it as it is now. The ceiling is up next and then the walls have to be painted. We´re thinking maybe a light grey-blue or a soft pinkish coral colour. Gillian bought me a beautiful bed from a stately home in Norwich. The mattress arrives today, yay! I`m planning to weed out the front garden while I wait for the delivery. That way we get a slightly nicer front house and I won´t miss the delivery people. Gillian is working the entire day and won’t be back before the evening.

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I absolutely love the fireplace, it´s covered with floral carvings which give the room a feminine feel. The mirror is bought in a charity shop for 8 pounds (bargain!).

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Some gifts from Lydia and Anne. Sparkling wine from Alsace (one of my all-time favourite wine areas), beeswax candles and dried sage. Apparently, you can use it to «cleanse» your new home, so I`ll do that today. It´s supposed to be stress-relieving too. I found this interesting article about burning sage, you can take a look at it here.

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Right, I have to continue writing some job applications. Hope you have a good day.

Marie x

Chateau de Gargilesse

Let me take you to a Chateau

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Hello lovely,

Stephanie and I went on a small outing yesterday and I thought I would show you some pictures. We drove to the little village Gargilesse who´s just a 30-minute drive from Lalande. Dana and Nicole invited us to go and see the art exhibition in the Chateau. We really enjoyed ourself, we took our time, there was so much beauty to soak in. The garden is absolutely stunning, something to be inspired by for sure. After we finished the viewing, we went to have a drink in one of the local restaurants. The girls had a white Valencay while I enjoyed a glass of Tonic water (my favourite drink these days). We wish we could stay for dinner but we had to get back to Lalande, haha. Dinner had to be served for the workshop. After, the students had a mini-concert. Such a great group of young talented people. Two of the students have just been accepted to CNSM de Paris (which tells you a little about the level of talent). Today is their last day here, there is another concert tonight and then we´re all having dinner together.

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my little ray of sunshine

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If you’re interested in knowing more about the Chateau itself I would recommend waiting for Stephanies next vlog, but you can also check out the Berry Provins information site, click here.

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chapel in the garden

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You’re not really allowed to take photos inside of the Chateau (ups), but I just had to take a photo of these stunning flowers. I am a florist after all, hehe. Don´t you just love a chunky Dahlia?

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I really loved the trees surrounding the back garden, reminded me of the place I grew up. My childhood house was surrounded by fields and trees. So idyllic.

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Oh, I just realised it´s Friday. That just made my afternoon very exciting. There might be a little glass of white wine on the terrace later. Hope you have a great weekend x

Ps: If you want to see more of my everyday life you can check out my Instagram here.

Marie

A quick trip to Bordeaux, a naked photoshoot and my goals for today

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Hey you!

Finally and dear God, so much have happened since we last spoke here. Sorry about that. We`ve been busy with workshops (we´re having the last one now), but also had friends and family staying, filming and the naked photoshoot. ++.  I´ve also had my best friend Lydia and her mom staying at Lalande. Having them here has been absolutely lovely, I haven´t seen Lydia for 3 years, so it was truly heartwarming to see her again. I managed to get away for one night during their stay, so we went to Bordeaux. It was definitely worth the 8-hour round trip. We explored the city, ate delicious french food and discovered an amazing rooftop bar at the Grand hotel. The next day we drove to Saint-Emilion on our way back, a famous wine area in Bordeaux. We went on a guided tour at one of the wineries and explored the little town. Highley recommended, such a beautiful place. Pictures coming up shortly.

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Today’s salads for lunch. The workshop will continue until Saturday. It´s a small one so Stephanie and I are seeing this week as a holiday. The musicians are young and pretty talented. They are opera singers and pianists, cooking while listening to them practising is so mesmerising. Wish you could hear it.

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I gave myself two goals today, 1: Write a blog post. 2: Write and send a job application by the end of the day. I need to get started, I will actually be in Bury next Wednesday. Crazy how quick time goes by here, though you wouldn´t think so. I´m really looking forward to my new start. I´m hoping that I´ll get more time and focus to write because I really enjoy the creativity and being able to inspire a little. Just have to make sure I don´t take on to much work this time. (It´s an old habit) Maybe something part-time. Hmm.

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This is one of the pictures from the naked photoshoot, by Renee Jacobs, taken on the terrace after a fun night with dinner and wine. It was really fun to do, such a confidence boost. I´m so happy these days. Some of you asked about my vegetarian diet and how everything is going. It´s going better than ever. I´m still working on a blog post about it, I´m doing before and after pictures + a good review. Coming up soon!

I thought I would update you all about our peahen, unfortunatley we had to take her to the vet to put her down. Her organs were failing and there was nothing more that we could have done. We´re all very sad about it, but I think she is in a better place now. Thank you all for your concern and advice.

Right, have to get on with goal number two for today.

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Hope you’re having a lovely day x

Marie

 

 

 

Long days and whiskey in bed

Hey

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Hello, how are you?

The Chateau life is pretty good these days, even though Stephanie and I only manage to cook, clean and sleep, it´s all good. The musical workshop is going well and the days go by so quickly. I barely have time to open my Macbook but I thought I would give it a try, I had a 45-minute window yesterday afternoon, I managed to write a little bit but I´ve actually finished this blog post just after lunch today. Oopsie. Suddenly the dinner had to be served and then the cleaning up had to start. After that I vlogged Stephanie singing at last nights concert, and then we just had to watch the last episodes of Fleabag. There were whiskey and chocolate, the perfect ending to a busy day.

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I managed to go for a run yesterday too. I usually run every second day now (love it), it takes me about 40-50 minutes and it´s always the same route (well until I get bored, I´m a creature of habit). Hehe. The picture is taken behind the Chateau, such a stunning view amongst the fields. I wonder if there are any good running paths in Bury. I actually love running outside when it´s been raining and the weather is cloudy. Makes me feel so fresh! Hehe.

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Ruby and I at the outdoor gym earlier this week. He always follows me here and I find it so cute. I never want to leave him here, but I´m afraid I´ll have to until I find permanent housing. I really believe that you can have a unique and deep connection with animals.  Ruby is so dear to me and I don´t really like cats. I´ve always been a dog-person admittedly.

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I´m finally getting out of the house. Yaay. It´s been a while and I need a few basics. Hope you all have a good day. We have two more full days of the workshop so I might blog later this week.

Marie x

When animales get sick

 

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Our little peahen has been sick this week. It all started with spotting her lying on the grass and not moving. We discovered that she couldn’t move, and we immediately thought that she must have been hit by a car. It turned out that she has been suffering from a heatstroke. We took her to the vet where they managed to cool her down. Other than that they weren´t able to do much. Her legs seem to be paralysed too. We´re hoping she will recover but the prognoses all say that these birds won’t make it when they have reached to this point. We have been giving her water and a special glucose drink to help her. Cole told us today that he had seen her moving one of her legs earlier. That made us all happy and we´re now feeling a little bit more hopeful. She has also started eating, which is a good sign.

Fingers crossed.

Other than that the Lalanders are busy with the workshops this week. They are leaving on Saturday, the same day that another workshop starts. A bigger one with more people. It will be a very interesting and busy week.

Hope your all well and happy x

 

Last month of summer

Hello
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french summers nights

I´m so happy these days, and present in everything that’s happening. All my focus goes to our Lalande life at the moment, and I love that. I just have 1 month left here before I´m flying to Stansted, where Gillian will pick me up and take me to Suffolk. Yay! The last week and a half have been time-consuming. Lots of preparations, cleaning, planning and so on. Last night we had a wedding who turned out to be more magical then I expected it to be. The attention to detail was utterly perfect and It made me want to work more with weddings in the future. Fingers crossed.

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Been busy in the floristry studio

I feel like everything is going the way I want it to. I´m healthier then I´ve ever been before and that makes me so proud. I´ve been a vegeterian for half a year now and I couldn´t be happier. My weekly runs are getting better and better. I can run without music and just get lost in my thoughts, but I can also run with a good podcast. Love both. I´ve also noticed that my emotions are more in harmony after I started doing meditation in the mornings. I always start with thinking about what I´m grateful for and that gives me so much meaning to my everyday life. I also visualize my goals and my future plans as I´ve already achieved them. The mindset makes me so focused and excited to go out and take action. My inspiration to start meditating comes from a podcast I listened to recentley, featuring Dr Joe Dispenza. He is a neuroscientist who thinks that everyone can heal their body through your mind. I find the theory incredibly fascinating. You can check his website out here.

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From last night´s party. During the day the sun was really warm and I managed to get a mild sunburn. You should see my ridiculous tan, I´m super tanned from the waist and up, and pale white from the bottom and down. Haha! Towards the night the air got cold and we all had to put on extra clothes. Reminded me of those Norwegian summer nights in my childhood.

Hope you all have a great day x

Happy Monday from Lalande

Hello! 🧡

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love this bohemian summer dresses

I can´t believe it´s been 10 days since I last posted something! Wow. Sorry about that, it´s been busy lately. Hehe! As I write this, I can hear classical music from all corners of Lalande. The musical workshop started yesterday and will continue until Saturday. Stephanie cooked for 12 hours straight yesterday, that girl is on fire. While she was in the kitchen, Cole and I were prepping all the bedrooms. Cole is our new workawayer from Alabama.

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Last week David and I went to Chateauroux to pick up my brother and his new girlfriend. They stayed with us for a couple of days before going to Barcelona. It was such a heartwarming feeling to see family again. Last time I saw my family was September last year. Time goes so quickly.

Before picking them up, David and I went on a little shopping trip. I found a couple of dresses. Been wanting a few to wear around the house. We had omelettes for lunch. Delish.

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On Saturday, Stephanie, David and I went to Emmaus to look for more lace and other things. There is always a reason to go, hehe. We also spent the day doing all the shopping for our musical workshop.

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I also had to move out of my room because of the workshops. Easier said than done… haha. I told Stephanie that she might have to drive me to Suffolk in September. My two luggaes have expanded a little bit..

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Stephanies dressing room, my temporary bedroom. It´s not the most tidiest room in the house, (haha) but it is so adorable and it has Stephanie written all over it. Love the wallpaper. The painting is made by Stephanie’s father.

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Sunny but windy today.

I hope you all have a great week.

Marie

 

Friday night

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Time goes so quickly here, we´re in the middle of the summer season. Crazy. The musical workshops are around the corner, and I´m kind of looking forward to it. Lots of new faces, music playing all day, prepping and serving food. Good times a head.

Today was a busy but great day, and I just got to sit down for a little break. We´re having a party in the stables tonight, friends and family have arrived for the weekend. I´m afraid it´s a bit of a secret, but I can promise that you will see some of it on TV! Hehe..

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Made this today, just a quick and easy flower arrangment. Love the simplicity of the white mixed with different greens. I will show you more pictures later (well, as much as I can I guess)

I just wanted to say hello, hope you’re having a great weekend. I should get back to the party!

Marie

 

 

 

Jacuzzi night, Champange and a treehouse

Hello Thursday!

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I wanted to share our 24hour-mini holiday with you, so here it is. Stephanie and I were so lucky to have a little getaway to Chateau De Memanat while Isabell and Percy held the fort at Lalande. It was such a heavenly visit; the treehouse was superb. I hope I get to revisit. It´s the perfect place to stay for a weekend or a whole week. I want to bring my family, best friends and a future lover here! Hehe. Absolutely loved it. Here are some pictures from our stay:

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We had lots of delicious nibbles for dinner. Stephanie had prawns and smoked gravlaks while we also shared cheese from the Saturday market. I made a yummy but simple salad with red onions, avocado and tomatoes, we also ate radishes dipped in mayonnaise. The atmosphere was relaxed, after dinner, we went into the jacuzzi and romantically, watched the sunset together. Haha! I actually had a glass of Champagne, and It felt pretty good. I haven´t wanted to drink anything for a while, so it felt nice to have little glass. We spent the rest of the evening wearing bathrobes while watching Netflix. So relaxing.

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Packed a few clothes, some toiletries and a new book

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The breakfast basket who magically appeared at 09.30, love the concept

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Definetly coming back!

We´re on full speed today with our new project. Everyone is doing something, and we´re hoping to finish everything before the guests arrive tomorrow. So much to do, but also lots of fun. Hope you all have a lovely weekend x

Marie

A visit to Aubusson and the tapestry museum

Hey lovelies

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We survived the heatwave, and the weather seems to be back to normal. I´m excited about sleeping with my duvet again, it´s just not the same with a single sheet. I´ve also been able to drink green tea today, the last days have been too hot. Anyways, Stephanie and I came back from our mini holiday yesterday. We had such a lovely time at Chateau Memanat, we stayed in a fairytale looking treehouse from Sunday to Monday. What a retreat, more of those days, please! The highlight was our long breakfast after a good sleep. We got the chance to properly plan everything and find inspiration for our next project, which felt amazing. We had so much fun browsing through Pinterest, and we´re now already working full speed at Lalande.

So, I thought I would share the Treehouse stay in another post later this week. On our way to our holiday destination, we stopped in the town Aubusson. It´s an hour drive from Lalande, so not far at all. Our mission (mostly Stephanies) was to see the tapestry museum. I`m glad we went there, it was a fantastic attraction. I´m usually the one who walks quickly through any expedition (I get very restless) but not this time. In fact, we ended up spending a few hours there. I loved it, so much inspiration.

Here are a few pictures from the day:

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the old town

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Stephanie, love her dress!

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We were supposed to eat here, but we arrived 15 minutes late, they closed at 13.30. The French and their mid-day breaks.. Haha Luckily, we had some food with us and had a relaxed lunch next to the river. One of the highlights was when we used one of my contact lense package  as butter- and cheese knife. 10/10 for ingenuity.

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A little gallery in the old town, showing all the tapestry cartoons from Aubusson. It was, of course, closed when we came, though it did say it was open according to the opening hours. Haha

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The Tapestry Museum in Aubusson, worth a visit if your planning to travel this way

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Stephanie reading about Saint Barbara

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One huge but stunning tapestry

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Love love the colours, they give out so much inspiration and creativity.

It´s been a long day. We have all been in the stable working today. So fun and rewarding to see everyone working together. Tomorrow will be another exciting day. Grant and I are going on a little road trip. We´re going to see another Chateau that Grant is interested in buying. It´s about 2,5 hour drive each way. We´re also stopping in Montlucon to visit an Emmaus shop. We need more lace and chandeliers. I might look for a new robe too… 😉

If you want to get a closer look at our everyday life, you can follow me on Instagram: mariewiik1. Click here!

Marie