Friday, July 11, 2014

Opening one door, preparing to close another


And I do mean "Hello there," said shyly, timidly, for I haven't been very present and yet you all have been extremely gracious and supportive.

It has been an unusual Summer. And it isn't finished yet, so I will beg more of your patience for a little while longer - say two weeks or so - and then I will be so very excited to return to regular programming.

For you see, we are moving. Out of Arles but nearby. To a village that I hope will remain my secret. But then again you know of it already, as I have referred to it as My Secret Provence several times in the past.

Sometimes a certain place calls to you and won't let you go until you make it your own. It took us almost one year but that is what Remi and I have done. We stopped looking for houses and started focusing on the where. No, we didn't buy but found a rental that makes me say, "Hello House," each time that I walk in the open front door. I smile broadly as I open up the shutters to let the light in.

You will understand when you see it. But not yet. No, I won't share until we are moved in. I am funny that way.

Until then, can you stand by me a little longer, even if I am silent? My trip to the States ended up being longer than I had planned and so now, despite fierce jet-lag, I am thrown into the thick of packing and renovating before the moving date of the 21st. I am honestly not certain how much I will be around before then. But please don't go away, for a quiet slice of the real Provence awaits you...yes, it still exists...

Do you have your hand on the door handle? I do, all while looking over my shoulder with much Gratitude. Arles will always be here for me but now we are certain and ready to start a new adventure.

For those of you that are wondering, yes, Remi and the boys are doing just fine and were very happy to welcome me home, albeit one in transit. No more to say about that, I am looking forward.

For there are good things ahead, I feel it in my bones.

Have a wonderful weekend. Toast the Summer for me, will you? 


  1. Dear Heather,
    I am so very happy for you and Remi ( and the boys!) Of course I look forward to hearing from you when you are all settled in to the new abode. I love the way it all happened....just knowing when you saw and felt it was right!

    The Arts by Karena

  2. Congratulations on finding your new abode, Heather! I am excited for you (all four) and looking forward to hearing more (but happy to wait until you are at least somewhat settled). We will raise a glass to you all on the evening of July 21, knowing that the moving part is behind you. I wish I were there to help! Try to take a few moments to rest a couple of times each day while you are adjusting to the time change and the effects of flying will pay off! Fondly, Leslie in Oregon

  3. I am very, very happy to read this post.
    After the 4th and before the 14th.........
    My very best wishes.

  4. Oh, Heather, this is wonderful news! You sound happy and looking forward to the move. So, you see, it was meant to be this place all along. Feeling happy, feeling excited for all of you. I know how very difficult moving can be, but when one is as excited as I think you are you just put one foot in front of the other and, as you said, look forward.
    Onward & Upward !

  5. How wonderful! I can't wait to see photos of your new home. Hope your move is smooth and uneventful!

  6. Delighted for you and the "boys", Heather! Wishing you an uneventful, easy move and looking forward to seeing the new digs!

  7. And so it begins. The satisfaction and sighs of closing one chapter of life….and then the sniff of the new: …the suspense, the fresh sounds, the taste of unexpected thoughts and childlike delight of discovery….

    I am very excited for you and Remi to begin this new chapter and while moving is exhaustingly overwhelming at times, I sense a warmth flooding over you - which is probably not so much to with the summer sun as with the knowledge that golden opportunities lay ahead.

  8. Very pleased for all of you! Beginnings can be so exciting, and you know we can hardly wait to hear more.


  9. Happy days...first for you, Remi and the 'boys'...then for us , your adored readers.
    Have a wonderful new beginning.....more magic to share.
    Montreal In Summer

  10. I was going to say that the pups don't look too mad at you for being away so long, but upon 2nd glance, maybe they do! (just a little). Yes, this has been a cuckoo crazy summer for you; hopefully you had fun here and hopefully your move will be smooth and WAY less exhausting than mine was!! (wish I was going to be there to be as helpful as you were to me!). I'm so happy that you're home safe and that you've found such a beautiful home to move into! Don't worry, we all love you and will be patient while you recover, pack and move. And we will excitedly wait for more great adventures and beautiful posts!!!

  11. All the best with your move. Looking forward to meeting your new abode.

  12. Congrats! I hope it is indeed a home sweet home for you!

  13. I can't wait to see your new sounds peaceful and idyllic...your words paint a very special picture...happy days ahead...enjoy your weekend and the packing ;) xx

  14. Your new adventure sound excited & full of anticipation. I am looking forward to reading about your new haven.

  15. Happy Moving!
    Please, remember to be careful with your back when lifting lots of stuff.

  16. I am so happy for you all ! It is always a fascinaiting adventure to move it is a sort of travel inside ourselves ! It is the measure of how we are feeling good...
    Have a lovely "travel"!

  17. Heather, I'm sending a big hug as you close and open these doors. I'm so happy that you've found a place that feels right, and can't wait to hear more about your new corner of Provence. I know you'll have so many beautiful pictures to share - both the kind you take with you camera and that you create with words. Good luck with the move - I hope that it goes as smoothly as possible. Here's to looking forward! XOXO

  18. This is all very good news! Of course we will wait for your more regular return. You have us sitting on the edge of our seats waiting to hear about the next leg of your great adventure.

  19. This sounds like the perfect time for your new adventure. I'm looking forward to seeing your new home. New beginnings are a little nerve wracking but exciting.

  20. Creativity: one door closes, one door opens.Vistas.

  21. I am thrilled for you, Heather. Change is so good for a person in so many ways. This sounds like a very lovely one. We can wait...but will be so excited for all of you!

  22. Heather we just moved last week...I had forgotten how tiring it can be...but you feel yourself spurred on by the excitement of the change. Can't wait to see inside.

  23. I'm so pleased to read this, Heather, and I'm looking forward to seeing your new home, whenever YOU are ready to show it.

  24. I'm glad to hear that you found a new home. Our coffee date will have to wait until I return to France at the end of October. By the way, I found a home for sale in Maussane or outside Maussane, next to a pony club. Happy moving and I'm looking forward to seeing photos of the new home when you are settled.

  25. Thank you so very much everyone!! We don't have internet at our new house yet so I haven't been able to respond as I would like. But moving day is coming up...On the 21st and 22nd! Hooray!

  26. Very happy for you and Remi that you found a home in your special part of Provence. I look forward to reading all about it.

  27. Yay! Excited for your move, I will hope that it goes smoothly for you. A new, quiet retreat...sounds magical. Good luck with everything!

  28. Dear Heather I am so happy for you. I hope the move goes smoothly. Just got back from London. The pace is so different to. I really enjoyed 'rediscovering' it. I hope we will still see Arles from time to time but I am really looking forward to seeing this new corner of Provence. I bet it will be just as beautiful.

  29. Well how wonderful, a new home is such a delight.

  30. How exciting! Sending you big bises for your new home. Good luck with the move!

  31. Dear Heather (and do, please, share this with Mister Britches),

    Well....the next few weeks will be a bitch (commme nous disons en francaise, ne'st ce pas?), I'm sure. Trust me on this one; I had to move two houses into one two years ago.....It was three weeks before I finally found a single pair of my own socks....and only about two days before I told Herve "FIND YOUR OWN DAMNED SOCKS!!!!,,,,I'm looking for the poor, old dog's pills right now, mister!!!!"

    In the midst of all the predictable Sound&Fury of take a bit of time to play this for yourself.....a nice song to welcome you and Remi into your new (and soon to be loved, I bet you a shiny red apple) home. Listen to it while you begin setting things up for you and that fine, little family of yours.......Go to:

    "Holy as a Day Is Spent", written and sung by Carrie Newcomer......
    Holy is the dish and drain
    The soap and sink, the cup and plate
    And the warm wool socks, and the cold white tile
    Showerheads and good dry towels

    And frying eggs sound like psalms
    With a bit of salt measured in my palm
    It’s all a part of a sacrament
    As holy as a day is spent

    Holy is the busy street
    And cars that boom with passion’s beat
    And the check out girl, Counting change
    And the hands that shook my hands today

    Hymns of geese fly overhead
    And stretch their wings like their parents did
    Blessed be the dog
    That runs in her sleep
    To catch some wild, elusive thing

    Holy is a familiar room and the quiet moments in the afternoon
    And folding sheets, like folding hands
    To pray as only laundry can

    I’m letting go of all I fear
    Like autumn leaves of earth and air
    For summer came and summer went
    As holy as a day is spent

    Holy is the place I stand
    To give whatever small good I can
    And the empty page, and the open book?...
    ...Redemption everywhere I look

    Unknowingly we slow our pace
    In the shade of unexpected grace
    So with grateful smiles and sad lament....
    As holy as a day is spent

    And morning light sings “providence”
    As holy as a day is spent
    Many fond best wishes to you and Remi.....

    David Terry

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  33. Hello Heather
    This is all so very exciting. I am delighted for you. I have missed your posts, we have been travelling and making some lifestyle changes too. Once the dust settles, I shall post about it. I will leave you with this poem by John O'Donohue

    By John O’Donohue

    May this house shelter your life,

    When you come in home here,

    May all of the weight of the world

    Fall from your shoulders.

    May your heart be tranquil here,

    Blessed by peace the world cannot give.

    May this home be a lucky place,

    Where the graces of your desires

    Always find the pathway to your door.

    May nothing destructive

    Ever cross your threshold.

    May this be a safe place

    Full of understanding and acceptance,

    Where you can be as you are,

    Without the need of any mask

    Or pretense or image.

    May this home be a place of discovery,

    Where the possibilities that sleep

    In the clay of your soul can emerge

    To deepen and refine your vision

    For all that is yet to come to birth.

    May it be a house of courage,

    Where healing and growth are loved,

    Where dignity and forgiveness prevail;

    A home where patience of spirit is prized,

    And the sight of the destination is never lost

    Through the journey be difficult and slow.

    May there be great delight around this hearth.

    May it be a house of welcome

    For the broken and diminished.

    May you have the eyes to see

    That no visitor arrives without a gift

    And no guest leaves without a blessing.

  34. You're moving?! Wow. Big change! I love what you did to your home in Arles and look forward to seeing your creativity shine through your new home (if you care to share pictures once you are moved in.)

    Taking a little breather on the blog to manage life sometimes is necessary. I've had to do it myself. Don't worry, we'll be here when you get back.

    Happy moving to you all!

  35. Good Lord, HEather....that postiung of mine somehow seems to have beenposted twice.....can youremove one of its appearnaces so that folks don't start hatingme?



  36. Heather
    I am so anxious to visit your new secret spot!

  37. I am back..and getting with the move. Exciting and loving your photos...every single one of them. I am with everyone else...looking forward to more! Saying that...take your time, you will know when the time is right..happy unpacking and best wishes in your new all of you! ;) xx


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