We took an unintended break from the blog and vlog @lechassaing. There is so much to catch up on, it’s good to be back. I’ve added a few new posts including The Christmas Kitchen, Restoring Our French Farmhouse, and some pictures from our spring road trip visiting family.

Life got complicated and when our respective fathers both took a turn for the worst, there was a lot of worrying and taking in new information to be done. We needed to schedule visits and spend time with our nearest and dearest.

We have been busy starting up a new conversational group to practice French. This helps to get more out of our French lessons. Progress is good but has recently paused as we all try to catch up with family and various long-overdue appointments post covid coughs and colds. It’s been a bonkers period of adjustment.

With the end to Covid restrictions, the possibility of less complicated travel has been on the horizon and we took advantage of that. We needed the headspace. The pressure to take on more projects and earn more money is ever-present and what a luxurious problem to have.

So how do you say no to the standard 9-5 lifestyle in front of the PC? How do you remove the luxury and convenience that money brings and still feel fabulously free? It’s actually easy to do when you live in a remote village in the depths of rural France but when returning to the old familiar reality of the UK with the hustle and bustle there is a slight yearning mixed with anxiety. It’s a strange feeling.

It’s sometimes very tempting to sign up for projects and take them back to France with us. There is a part of me that says you should make some extra money while you can, you must continue your career path. The niggling doubts inside me quietly suggest that our lifestyle in rural France is just a fantasy, one that I’m happy to indulge in.

To put things into perspective I am reminded daily of the atrocities of war and the toll of the pandemic, and climate change. It’s all part of the bigger picture, the backdrop to life and 24-hour news. My comfort has been to eat more cheese and drink more wine. This pastime is generously accommodated in France.

After a weird and wonderful hiatus, I am back to the vlog n’ blog gently increasing my online presence again. It’s time to get back on track and resume the work we love which is all about our commitment to the farmhouse, creativity, and more specifically the barn renovation.

We hit a low point at the end of February after fitting rafters. Once again it became abundantly clear that renovating old buildings with a distinct lack of straight lines can be problematic. Using the first section of the barn roof closest to the house as our roof training area we tried various wood finishes for the underside and methods of working in preparation to continue with the remaining 60ft (approx 20 meters).

Good to be back

We definitely need more scaffolding to provide us with a new literal (and I suppose metaphorical) solid platform. From this solid platform, we can string a straight line across the whole roof and keep everything straight. Well, the aesthetic illusion of straight with a wonky underside.

Juggling the day job with the barn roof is slow and challenging it will get done eventually… We are keen to progress further this year. It’s good to be back

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