Wednesday, November 8, 2017

Onto the second area we stayed in~ Vaucluse~

Our Airbnb at the second location..had a dream garden.

The owners built their home 16 yrs ago..

..and Rémy,the husband..devoted a lot of blood sweat and tears to this gorgeous garden.

The olive trees are over 100 yrs old..
the gardens..and home..are maintained to a "T".

My father..for some reason..nicknamed me the Immaculate Conception..(until I turned 17)..

This home was that.

We stayed in an annex..a small apartment adj. to their home.

It was built for her aging parents.

2 Airbnbs we stayed in..we were in annexes built for aging parents.

It is completely natural..and there is no question about doing so it seems in the countryside.

Completely natural they said.

I fully understand the kindness as I have witnessed it first hand..

but completely natural?

But once the parents die:( What to do w/ that space?They asked themselves..

So some  rent them out as Airbnbs.

As I said ..gardens..home and annex..spotless.SPOTLESS.

It let us explore the area..w/out having to leave from St-Rémy.
Although in retrospect..all can be done from St-Rémy up to here..

We had a heck of a time finding our Airbnb's not our's a small town..the GPS was great but the streets were extremely narrow and uphill and downhill..

again..experienced drivers in conditions like may be a breeze..but we are not..the turns are not 90 degrees..more like 70..
a neighbor was so nice..she walked us up and showed us where.
Imagine my contentment in finding that garden.

And lovely hosts.

So sweet..pleasant..kind..they had us over for wine and appetizers..delicious.
Hard working..

Poms literally dripping from a tree:)

If you are looking for a life of luxury and being catered to..Airbnbs are not for you.

But I prefer them to hotels...well the usual hotels we stay at;)

Of course I prefer a private home;)

RE Airbnbs..not specifying any  but having just stayed in a few..

One thing I do not get is the cleaning fee ..because I usually leave anywhere we go in the same manner we found it in..exactly..or better.So it should be built into the price per week.

If I had an Airbnb.

But worse ..a sheet fee? Why pay for sheets?We're not taking them home lol.And not cheap..enough to buy a new set of sheets.

I would question that next time..

Just suggesting to you..
It was our first experience.

I want one..up above♥

And grass? Just raking..No weeds it seemed and no perennials.
I wanted to come out my cottage gardens and opt for these.

Our first market there was the Apt.

LOL Pebble Beach and Marthas Vineyard.
We really look French Canadian don't we?:)
I am the French dresser..

See his happy face?
We had a waitress that was out of a movie♥
She was maybe 20..charming..askew..scattered..
yet it did not matter.
You would not believe the service..some got grumpy..we reveled.
It's a holiday!

The Apt market is lovely..and busy.But ISLS..? BUSIER.

I did buy some powdered ochres there and loved my shopkeeper..even more the French woman in her 80's now living in Australia because of her daughter and grandchildren..who bought the same ochres I did and a travel set for an artist friend of hers.
You would have never believed she was in her 80's..not because she has been cosmetically enhanced..but her joie de vivre and sheer brilliance.

If you think the above is I mentioned above...

Isle-Sur-La Sorgue?

I didn't even get a pic..would have needed a ladder..

On the homefront..

my calendars have arrived:)

I love tabletop day by day..Mary E..

But on the wall in my craft room..I love my Susan..and now that I have met her..even more♥.

In the kitchen...

I made these:)Cute enough or what?♥

Don't rely on the cooking directions..after the first 30 mins mine 

were NEAR done..I left them in the oven w/ the garlic..and yes..that's a good thing..put the garlic on top after..

Hasselbacks are always pretty..minis?
Trop cute..

Nickel as they say on French cooking shows♥


  1. Oh. my. goodness!! I LOVE that garden! I do not understand the cleaning fee nor, especially, the sheet fee???? Seriously. That should all be included in the pricing up front. But, maybe that garden was worth an extra fee... ;) LOL! Love the way you described the other lady buying ochres! May we all aspire to her lead! blessings and hugs ~ tanna
    ps the mini hasselbacks are too cute!

    1. They gave us access and freedom to the whole garden:) Their cat was a feature..what a life he had! was quite paradise in that garden:)

      LOL maybe they did not know that it s not everywhere..the sheet fee..but it is a learning curve..right? For everyone..

  2. I think Jacques was happy to see how happy you were. It looks gorgeous and though I've never tried the AirBnB, I should think it would be a great way to get to know the natives. What are yu doing with the ochres? Washes for watercolors. Now that is getting deep into the process and techniques.

    1. I painted a small thing is..I am going to add some gum arabic and see what happens..honestly it's thrilling just to look at the jars..colors..and reminisce lol.
      Oh what a feeling!
      The whole day comes back..I love that:) I will share once I put something together if even only for my jars:)
      He was pretty happy..let me tell you Léa was a treat!

  3. It sounds like a wonderful place to stay! We are putting French pea gravel in our back "yard" area instead of grass.

  4. J looks like a happy camper and really relaxed...those gardens are magnificent Mon...Remember Mon he gave his ❤️ not his 👀!!!!! Di

    1. Those gardens WERE magnificent Di..when we arrived..everything had been raked..and it is always like that..not just for us..her home was just precious and looked sparkling new..instead of it's 16 years.Kind kind people.

  5. Monique I love all the pictures are absolutely beautiful!!and love this picture of pomes , are beautiful! xoxo

  6. Beautiful place, lovely photos. I'm happy to find your blog.

  7. Bonjour ma chère Nana,

    Je ne suis pas toujours très présente sur les blogs et j'ai manqué un certain nombre de vos articles.
    Je m'aperçois que tu te trouvais en France tout près...
    Merci pour le partage de tes photos...

    Gros bisous 🌸

    1. Oui en Provence..presque tout le mois de septembre..on a aimé:)

  8. Hi Monique! I've been in touch with my Editor, he says you must have fallen through the cracks. He should be in touch shortly! What can I say about this post. Beautiful photos and I learned so much about airnb. It seems the way to go, but again I don't understand the cleaning fee or the fee for sheets. Surely that is what is included when you stay someplace. Like you, I clean everything before I leave anyways, but duh.Its your holiday accomodation, are you, the owner (not you Monique, lol) not responsible to keep it clean? Also sheets. Don't they need to be washed, etc. anyways? Certainly these things should be all included in the price agreed. Oh, but what a lovely garden and spot. Heaven. I can't wait to see what you do with your ochres. Those potatoes are cute, cute! I love potatoes. My book about the painting (your recommendation) should arrive today. I am excited! xoxo

    1. You might know pretty much everything in the's a refresher..brsuh strokes..I have no basic training of colors and hues etc..I plan on rereading the first
      Hope to hear from the editor..I have a habit of falling though cracks lol;)
      Thank you Marie!
      Yes sheets..what we remove and fold at foot of bed..
      every place was different..
      The last place we stayed at..the cleaning lady was there Salia..I hate saying cleaning lady is there a better word? I don't have one so I have no idea:) Anyway she was sooo nice.. 54..6 grands can you imagine..looked 40.
      We as guests get reviews too on AirBnbs..I like glowing ones lol:)

  9. What town? Did I miss that?
    Those potatoes! Yum

    1. This town was Robion..a small town close to lots of towns..from Robion we visited..Apt..Bonnieux,Lacoste,ISLS,Gordes,Fontaine De Vaucluse,Ménerbes..Oppède Le Vieux..Roussillon..maybe another:) I am starting to forget!!

  10. I remember them going to Vauclause in the book! Seeing your photos makes it all the more real!

    Fascinating post, this one. I think I would like the Air B&B experience (versus a hotel) but I don't get the sheet fee. I can maybe see the cleaning fee because not everyone is like you but usually they are far too high. We always clean before we leave a spot like a cottage rental but I suspect not everyone does. And at any rate, it should be included in the price. I love the market photos -- that bread! And the lavender! Jacques is very happy and handsome sitting there! He looks in his element!

    Don't you love the anticipation of a new calendar?! Love yours. Two of my favorites.

    1. I do love a new calendar..always have for yrs we had my real estate one..happy to be so done with those:)
      The life of a retiree should be touted much more.
      Bored? You and me? You and I? Nevah.Thank God.In more ways than oe n'est-ce pas?
      Roussillon and Gordes great towns and the book mentions them often.My friend Nancy is a Chagall lover and you know how many times he is mentioned.I know it is a work of fiction but believable!
      My friend paints like Chagall..she does in a way!

  11. I do love that garden. So simple and so beautiful! Can you imagine the ease of care? The stone table and walls and pebbles are so impressive and so white and I love the planter in the center of the table. My eyebrow raised when I saw the sheet charge too. I understand how they could be ruined but a better idea would be to offer a refund if everything is left in good shape. Love the photo of Jacques! He looks so happy. I haven't bought a calendar in years but I know how much you love Susan Branch and her pictures are charming :) The wee Hasselbacks look so cute!! ♥

    1. I thought of you w/ the wee ones..great idea..refund if still good:)

      You learn you learn you learn:)

      Jacques loves France..I was disheartened when our Paris adventure went sour..although he was reticent re Paris..he did it for me.

  12. The garden is so lovely, yet very simple. Staying at an airbnb sounds perfect.... more of a personal touch and experience.Jacques looks right at home. So glad you got to go. Puzzled by the sheet they think after each guest leaves, they must buy new sheets? So happy you got to visit and take in all of the beauty.

    1. Thank you Linda! Oh no..they know we leave the sheets:) Just so unusual!

  13. Oh, I love that you went to Apt. That's where our lovely little home away from home was. Your trip to you to so many fun places, quite amazing Monique!

  14. Oh...that is a lovely garden indeed!
    I know what you mean about the cleaning fees...we also leave it cleaner than when we arrived! hahaha!
    A sheet fee??? Perhaps some lowly people steal the sheets??? Geesh......
    Love the busy markets and all the people...Your Jacques looks very happy indeed!!
    Enjoy your weekend...
    Linda :o)

    1. he's in his element in small French towns:) He loves the ambiance..I must say I do's a different's busy and interesting..fills the corners of your mind..

      My boys won the Championship in Football..Max's team won last yr,this year Oli and Noah's team they are so happy!

  15. Replies
    1. One day you will see every little bit of everything !I know it!And you will love it all❤️I know you..and it's my pleasure

  16. These photos look lovely. I need to come back here to your blog... and Provence, and spend some proper time. I am going to email you. I want to ask you the details about the trip. Provence is one area I have not spent much time in. The colours are just spectacular. I hope you brought home a basket. I saw a lovely one in Paris and hesitated on it. In the end I put a pair of boots with the box in the suitcase and did not go back for the basket. I always say that I am going to ship a trunk back one day. There is really so much to buy in France. The colour of the lavender.

    1. It was just great! No basket..almost:) I almost convinced Jacques to buy one..I have nice market bags at home..Mtl has beautiful shops..
      One year..2008 I wanted to bring home a trolley:)
      I have fave towns in Provence:)
      Will be happy to to where to stay..too hard..I see how some travel..and we are all so very very different I would be hard pressed to recommend..also depends on your transportation there..The last place we stayed at was for a few nights apartment.I have never lived in was in an area of many it turns out..when I walked upstairs and we were let to the apt.I was pleased.
      And it had a bus stop right there into town..Aix is a peach of a town:)
      The market..just lovely.
      But we are not talking super luxurious.
      It was recently remodeled..park like setting..BRIGHT..lovely doors opening onto the views..and clean.

  17. We have not tried an Airbnb yet so thanks for the insight. Another great post with fantastic photos making me dream of traveling again soon. Thanks for sharing your adventures!

    1. Jacques did the initial research on the enter areas of interest and budget and a bunch show he picked a few places in areas..we narrowed them down..until the can read reviews..and you can ask questions..

      LOL..some were right in town..right in ..I asked if parking was available..and TV..J likes the news.. she emailed back and said her place was NOT for us..parking in the village..and no tv..
      There you have it..we knew right away.
      Turns out though..TV is not a necessity if there is great WiFi..that's another thing..ask if WIFI is GREAT..

      some places..the connection is almost nil.
      I need WIFI way more than TV.
      And yet the ads say yes there is..but spotty or only outside.And iffy.

  18. Your photos beautifully capture the atmosphere of the place. I especially loved all the trees.

  19. Wow, what an memorable trip you had!! I love how you are in love with the people you meet, the sights you see! And the colors!! I've never stayed in an Airbnb but friends like them. Funny, in Quebec City we enjoy the sort of blank plain-ness of a traditional hotel...

  20. Its years since I have been to Apt and all the places around. we were cycling then and would have been delighted to find that Airbnb. But actually most of the places were lovely. Hm.... your post makes me want to return. maybe next spring....