02 February 2017

Feeling like a Dreamer.

Although we've been officially retired for a good many years,
this year is the start of a new way of life.
No more guests to look after,
 it's just me & Mr France.
Free to do what we want, when we want.
Some people think we are mad to close the door on our home for the last 26 years
put our belongings into storage and jump in the car to start something new.
Others, especially our close family say ' good for you, go off and enjoy yourselves.'

This is the region we are staying in for three months and have started to look for our new home.

This region is classed as the 2nd warmest region in France, having a micro climate.
Also we would have the benefit of the coast, which we love.
So we have the best of both, countryside and the coast.
The biggest problem is where to choose.
 We are looking to have a ' coup de foudre'   
- to find a house we fall in love with.

In the meantime we have rented a small cottage, which is perfect.
 If you'd like to see inside, join me for a tour of our tastefully furnished cosy cottage.

A very good wood burner, which  has been doing its job of keeping the cottage nice & warm.

It's tucked away from the owners house with its own sheltered private walled garden.
We have been here now for three weeks & beginning to find our way around the area.
The first two weeks Mr France was recuperating from a lung infection, so he spent
most of his time relaxing & looking through the window at this perfect view.

It's been a blessing knowing we didn't have anything to do.

A nice slow pace of life, taking leisurely breakfasts,
discussing what we are going to do each day.

and what we would like our new house to look like.
We would like it to be a lot like this.

I must say it seems very strange not having things to do .
 after years of always looking after our paying guests,
We need to take our time and make the right choice.

Our hosts are an English couple with a family, who have lived in this area
for several years, which means they are able to give us lots of helpful information.

In the meantime we are enjoying seeing what the region has to offer. 
We've looked at several properties this week, but haven't 
seen anything I could put my mark on and feel 
this is where we could spend the rest of our years.

In the meantime we will keep on looking and enjoy the beauty this area has to offer.
I'll be back soon to show you some of the places we have seen. 
I have taken photos of the houses we have seen, if you'd like to see 
some typical Charentais houses, let me know and I can show you 
the good, the bad & some way out of our budget.
But what would life be without having a dream.
So until next time I'll leave you, 
feeling like a dreamer.

à bientôt
Barbara Lilian


  1. I can only imagine how it feels to look out your window ad not see something that needs to be done! Good luck in your search.

  2. Wonderful place to be in life . . .
    Kudos to you, choosing to start over . . .
    I am sure you will know when "the right place, setting" arrives!
    Enjoy the journey . . .

  3. Thanks for taking us along :) What a fera place..and yes that plan would be great..lvr/dnr combined w/ fireplace..just right..after all the property you have been looking after..it seems idyllic..
    I wondered how on earth I would ever retire..even though I had hobbies..well I didn't quite retire..the decision was made for me..and honestly apart from the circumstances..I could not be thinking about working again..and wonder why I did so long..Jacques has been retired for 20 yrs..we are never bored one day of our lives..not even in winter..and yet we are homebodies..not social butterflies.
    Home for us is best.

    I think it was very fortunate that Mr France was able to rest out his infection..far less worries..enjoy..this are looks adorably idyllic.

  4. Oh Barbara! What a quaint little cottage...looks relaxing!
    I must say I am sorry we won't be staying in your house when we finally get to France...but I totally get it. So glad you can enjoy being retired!
    I look forward to your posts.

  5. Your temporary cottage looks very nice and cosy and I wish you well as you search for a permanent dwelling that is just right for you. It would be a different lifestyle for you both after hosting guests for many years. Now you have time to relax and enjoy your new surroundings with no big worries. Thank you for sharing your home with us and I will look forward to following you on your search for your own perfect spot. I just know it will have a garden with roses. Blessings, Pam

  6. What a wonderful place to be...live your new home love Ria x ❤️

  7. Good Afternoon Barbara, I am so sorry it has taken me a little while to catch up with you, but life has been a little busy since we returned from Chicago.
    I think you are brilliant to start a new adventure and in such a wonderfully warm climate. Will the warmth of the sunshine help your back problems?
    I do understand, that staying in rented accomodation is not the same as living in your own home, but what it gives you, is space to think about exactly what you want from your new home and although you may feel a little lost at the moment, once you find your forever home, you will be a busy bee.
    I would say, enjoy this moment in time with its peace and quiet.
    I'm glad to hear Mr France is well again, my goodness he did sound as if he had been poorly.
    I look forward to seeing the photos of your househunting.
    Take good care of yourself.
    Best Wishes as always.

  8. I'm happy that you have found this charming little cottage to stay at while you try to find your next home. I know the perfect one is just waiting for you to stop by for a look. In the meantime, I'm looking forward to seeing the ones that you visit…it will be fun to see what the area has to offer.

  9. Hello Barbara, I noticed you posted again. I love those wood burning fireplaces. Jess has one like that also. Your cottage looks so charming. I like that tea pot and yellow cups, very cute. I hope you are enjoying these February days.

    It's raining like crazy here in California, and we're blessed to have it come our way.

    love, ~Sheri

  10. The cottage seems like the perfect place from which to set out in search of another wonderful place to live. Good luck with the search - I look forward to seeing a little more of your part of the world.

  11. Dear Barbara
    This looks like the perfect 'holding pen' for you both while you wait for the right home to find YOU!!!
    I loved the Charente region when I visited many years ago!
    I thought at the time when on Ile de Re, this could be my retirement place!
    It's probably changed and too touristy or expensive nowadays.
    I enjoyed La Rochelle too, I suppose the area appealed so much because I've lived by the sea all my life!

    We are house hunting too, in a lackadaisical way! We want to downsize and find something on one level.
    Yes, age has caught up with us and the stairs need to go ha ha!

    I'm sorry Mr F has been unwell and I'm sure once Spring and the warmer weather arrives
    he will be happier and you too no doubt!
    Climate is an important consideration at our age so you've picked the right region!


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