Saturday, June 19, 2010

Backcountry France: My Cousin's House

Once in France, my very first stop is my cousin's house. Being an only child, I grew up surrounded by my aunt's five children, they are as close to me as a brother or sister would be. I have always love my cousin's house, it has a true soul that only a house well lived and loved can exude. My family just went through some tragedies and the feeling of a home brings comfort, endurance and continuity.
When my cousin first showed me this house, a tree was growing in lieu of a roof...but the view was beautiful, the structure simple... great bones for a young family to start a home.
Over the years, the house was restored to its original humble bones, a beautiful garden was designed, courtyard created, vegetable garden planted, fruits trees, pigeons coop,a yard for chicken, ducks and geese.
Being a designer in New York, I work on very large and sophisticated projects, but to me the true meaning of a house is when it is called "home". To me, this house  has always been a true home, not for show, not for investment purpose, not a  house to be lived in the occasional month out of a year, but a house that reflects the unrelenting love and work from its cousin who now takes of this property entirely by wonder why she looks so tan, fit and stunning every time I see her...

Courtyard entrance

The pool is well hidden from the house and surrounded by lavender bushes.

I drool over her vegetable garden

Her dog helps with garden work

The outdoor barbecue

The kitchen is so warm and inviting, she is also a fabulous cook

The interiors are designed with an open floorplan and filled with local antiques from South West of France


  1. Hi there Francine,
    Your cousin's home looks like paradise....a beautiful building, fabulous gardens and the interior matches the outside. I would think that one becomes a different person after a few days staying there, espeially as your cousin is a good cook. I'm sure that it's heaven. Do you visit very often ?
    Thank you so much for your beautiful and kind comment. You are truly a wonderful blogging friend and I hope that, one day, we do meet up.
    Lots of love to you Francine and have a wonderful weekend. XXXX

  2. Francine, on my goodness, SHE takes care of it alone. I'm hugely impressed. Lovely property with all those gardens. It's wonderful to go home isn't it? xx's

  3. What a perfect Mas! I love the kitchen, is that a wood burning oven????OH!!!!The food that's cooked in there from the garden....Lucky you!It looks REAL not designed. Thanks for the peek.Hope the new studion is going well Maryanne xo

  4. francine...
    i am loving all of this... so cozy, warm, inviting and filled with love...and all of the gardens and landscapes you have shown... simply lovely...
    have a wonderful day sweet friend... xx pam

  5. Francine thank you for sharing your cousins home with us. To imagine she cares for her home & gardens all by herself is so impressive. A real joy to see as it's so beautiful and something so many of us could only dream about. You said it best that a home is truly a home when it's toiled over with love, and devotion; not as an investment, or to impress others. Then it really is "home". I do hope you are enjoying your holiday with your beloved family?


  6. What a gorgeous home!!!! My dream is having a country home in France! Your photos are stunning!
    Thanks for visiting my blog!

  7. What a have such fabulous relatives in France!

  8. when can we all visit?...all your bloggy friends are booking flights and packing bags....sounds like a lovely visit and i'm sure there is much to nice to have met you, and i must apologize for my slowness in responding to emails...tonight i have set aside time for more correspondences...maureen lynne

  9. Trés chic. One only wishes that one's gardens looked so well kept up. Seems like your cousin could use an extra hand or two (!) I volunteer.

  10. That kitchen would make me a very happy woman!

  11. Will they let us have a blogger girls seminar at their home! It is wonderful!

    Art by Karena

  12. I would love to have breakfast in her kitchen. Is that an antique Kittenger sideboard? It
    is a wonderful home. Enjoy your visits, what an awesome garden..


  13. Forgot to say.. I just love that kitchen.. perfect!!

  14. Dear Francine
    What a gorgeous home.. you are so right ...even in the photos you can see it has a beautiful soul! Sorry to hear your family has experienced tragedy... it does make you want to be surrounded by the familiar... I can't believe your cousin looks after all this by herself.. and a little help from that cute pup!

    sorry I have been so absent.. so much going on over my way my blogging has slipped down a notch or two... do you have an email address? I wanted to reply to you about those images you were interested in.. Have a lovely week xx Julie

  15. Francine, what a beautifully written post about your cousin's home! (I adore the images, too) Her family home is just lovely and so warm—in fact, I had to scroll through your images twice. It makes me smile, because if I close my eyes, I can imagine being there, walking around in her amazing garden, through the house, touching the stone as I walk indoors, and feeling the cool terracotta tile under my toes. I can only imagine how much fun it would be to visit! No wonder you love it so much. Thank you for sharing this—it's wonderful to get to know you more and see such a place :)

    Also, if you haven't received my email, I apologize—sometimes my account times out and the email is never sent. Can I send you another? Which email address do you prefer?

    I hope you're having a wonderful week,


  16. What a home indeed. You can always tell when a home is a home and not a place for show. Your cousin has a gorgeous home indeed. It is true that having something that's more constant like a home to come to is a huge source of comfort. I know it always comforted me the years I spent away from home.

  17. I tend not to leave a ton of comments, but i
    did some searching and wound up here "Backcountry France: My Cousin's House".
    And I actually do have a couple of questions for you if you don't mind. Is it just me or does it appear like a few of the comments look like they are left by brain dead visitors? :-P And, if you are posting at other online social sites, I would like to keep up with anything fresh you have to post. Could you list of the complete urls of your social pages like your linkedin profile, Facebook page or twitter feed?
    My webpage : the diet solution program pdf


Related Posts with Thumbnails Follow InterieursNYC on Twitter