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Giveaways, recipes and a dose of inspiration from France

This week I sat outside a café and watched the world go by for the first time since October last year. I went to the market in a little town near where I live called Hesdin, church bells rang, the shops were open, the market was buzzing though we were all in masks. It felt marvellous to be out and about, especially as the rain stopped after a record breaking month of sogginess here in France. Also this week our local food truck returned for its weekly stop at the town hall in my village. And for the first time in 7 months, I didn’t have to cook dinner from scratch! Such simple things, but they are so much a part of our pre-Covid normal lives that it felt very meaningful and gave me hope that things might one day get back to normal.

It was in Hesdin 17 years ago that on a cold, miserable February day I first saw my little French house. An estate agent gave me a photograph thinking he might just be able to persuade me to look at a house I didn’t want and couldn’t afford. I was with my husband Mark who wasn’t impressed but has since come to realise that I was right to fall in love with a rundown old hovel in the middle of nowhere, make him sell his beloved car to pay for the deposit and spend the last 17 years doing it up! My dad said I was mad to buy it. “A money pit that will never be finished” he announced dramatically. Well he was wrong and he was right. I wasn’t mad, I love my little house, my little village and my lovely neighbours and the way of life in France. But we’re still renovating!

Meanwhile, there are two brilliant contests for you to enter –  win a membership to Dick & Angel’s new venture – The Salon and win a copy of Molly J Wilks’ fabulous cookery book French Pastry Made Simple. The giveaways are open to everyone, wherever you are…

Wishing you a very bon weekend.
Bisous from my little pigsty in rural northern France,

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Janine Marsh is Author of My Good Life in France: In Pursuit of the Rural Dream – ebook, print & audio, on Amazon everywhere & all good bookshops online, and My Four Seasons in France: A Year of the Good Life

Don’t miss the weekly newsletter which every week brings you inspiration from France

Read the whole newsletter here or take a sneaky peak at some of what’s in it:

Dream hotel of the week: L’Armancette 5 star hotel in Haute-Savoie, there’s nowhere more soul-soothing and uplifting…

Recipe of the week: Raspberry mousse cake – utterly, totally irresistible!

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