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Anniversaries and Give Aways, the Crème de la Crème from France newsletter

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Bonjour to you all and a very warm welcome to our new subscribers – it is a pleasure to meet you.

This week I have two anniversaries! First, it was three years ago that I dreamed up the idea for The Good Life France. A few months later, after I learned what a website is and how to upload a photo, I published my first post – and I’ve never looked back. I write about my life and the places I visit in France as a travel writer, and features about anything and everything to do with France. Since then I’ve been joined by some wonderful writers who also love France. I’ve met many lovely people, made thousands of friends and I can’t thank you all enough for the fantastic support you’ve given me.

I used to work in a city job in London. I wore high heels, nail varnish, carried a brief case – I was “a suit” you might say. I had a tiny garden at my house in the suburbs, I had never had a pet and I didn’t like mud. When I bought my house in rural France and got chickens, ducks and geese and took in 5 stray cats and 3 stray dogs, my city friends were completely astonished. They said I was like Felicity Kendall of “The Good Life” TV sitcom series in the UK. I never ever dreamed that one day I would be writing to thousands of you every week and reaching more than 600,000 people a month.

Thank you so much to everyone who has read, shared or liked what I’ve written or photographed – The Good Life France wouldn’t be what it is without you.

My second anniversary is my birthday! I will be celebrating it in lovely Lille at Europe’s biggest Flea Market where there are more than 10,000 vendors with stalls spreading over 100km. If I don’t find something I like for my pocket money there I’ll eat my hat!

I wish you all a very very Bon Weekend,
Bisous from France,

Chantilly Cream: This week I went to Chateau of Chantilly just outside Paris and I was so lucky to see the chefs who work in the restaurant (which is the legendary French Chef Vatel’s old kitchen) come out and demonstrate how to make Chantilly cream…

Builders in France: A great tale from Dutch author, hotelier and expat in France Peter Schoenmaker in his true life in France series. This week he makes us laugh with a story of a too-successful builder and the only one in the village with email…

Give Away: The House at Zaronza, based on a true story about lost love letters in Corsica, we review the book and interview the author Vanessa Couchman. Just comment on the link on our FB page to be with a chance to win (draw is on Saturday 30 August).

Grandma in a box: We talk to US expat Debby Bine who lives in Uzes and keeps in touch with her family by Skype…

Macarons  – don’t you just love them? We interview Jill Colonna, the Queen of Macarons in Paris and review her book Mad About Macarons – how to make perfect macarons at home without months of practice like the French chefs do.  We also share our favourite Jill Colonna recipe for sticky toffee pudding macarons…. scrumptious!

We’ll be running a great give away of not just one but three copies of her book next week but get ahead by writing the word macarons on our timeline and we’ll put your name in the hat TWICE!

Rail pass: SNCF have a great rail pass offer valid for travel from September to December but hurry, the offer runs out at the end of September….

The Braderie Lille – Europe’s biggest Flea Market, here’s how to get there and what to see from 14.00 Saturday 6th until 23.00 Sunday 7th, its non-stop, so take a torch for night time browsing! Might see you there…

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