Marianne Sloan's Treasures

When I got the call three weeks ago that my mother had been taken by ambulance to hospital I didn't rush across the continent to home right away... after all, my aunt, cousins, nephew and niece were close to her and could keep me updated. But after just a few uneasy days I jumped on the quickest flight I could get and came to her.

She's elderly... 94. She had choked, and she is now in Rehab getting all kinds of therapy. I have entered that world where I am the parent and she is .. sort of... the child. Her future is really unknown.. she may stay in Rehab for 100 days, or she may be released in a week. She wants to go home. I am spending a lot of time at her home, trying to put together a plan that will keep her happy for her last years.

She is strong, alert, sturdy and stubborn! She is lovely, charming and utterly unique. She is quite smart and takes a dim view of those who try to patronize her!

I took a few minutes today while the rains fell outside and with my iPhone, took pictures of all the things that are so precious to her in her living room, the same one she has inhabited for the last fifty years. When I look at her collections, her colors, her artlessly chic way of arranging her things; her love of silver, of sculptural things from nature, of found objects that appeal to her.. I suddenly see myself!

my mother... by the way, her name is Marianne Sloan... loves silver, and especially loves
sea shell motif in you can see!

my father brought this silver figure of an Asian
peasant with a detachable walking stick home to
my mother after the Korean War

my mother had a thing for gargoyles after
living in Paris as a child; this is one of her favorites;
in the back are two jugs from Constantinople where they lived
when her father was a director
for the Near East Relief effort; an old
glass hurricane to the right

in her secretary I found this piece of driftwood sharing space
with two old tiles she loved, and my grandmother's
silver napkin ring from her girlhood in Savannah

on top of the long bookcase are my mother's mantel clock and her Minton soup tureen

the triangle is the flag that draped my oldest brother's coffin when he
died as a young man; the large framed baby quilt
dates from 1834 and was handmade
by my mother's great, great-grandmother

the abalone shell interior looks beautiful with
Mom's japanese parasol, blue glass jug
and silver framed portrait of my
beautiful grandmother Amie

my mother put these silver balls in this
old hanging lantern several decades
ago; they have been here ever since!

her collection of shells and old bricks smoothed by the sea that have washed
ashore greets you when you come in

my mother's passion for driftwood in fantastic shapes along
with her love of simple windows.. never one for anything more
elaborate than osnaburg curtains... are actually quite
contemporary in feel!

my mother's grandparents along with a
little German angel and a small
Venus de Milo are tucked together
in a corner of her secretary

the rain splashing on her front walk,
and the same welcome mat that
has been there for decades!


thanks so much for visiting!... Kit

Happy Summer to the Northern Hemisphere :)

If there is one tiny thing I miss about Provence, it's this wonderful beverage.. Schweppes Agrum'. LOVE it!! can't get it here in America... so far my search has yielded nada. Can you not tell just by looking at this bottle that it is very delicious, a little bitter, a little citrusy and altogether refreshingly thirst quenching? To say nothing of how beautiful their ad campaign is!

Here then is the perfect pairing for hot summer lunch: Chilled Shrimp Salad (below) and ice cold Schweppes Agrum' (I wish!)

Just for the record, this is no lame shrimp salad recipe.. it contains both watermelon and heirloom tomatoes just for starters. It is fab*u*lous! Enjoy!

done up in this ad campaign like Our Lady, this drink is
so popular it turns out it has

its own Facebook page... and I am a fan!

also very delicious

a little mocktail from their ad campaign..
so adorably delicious looking!

ridiculously delicious shrimp salad contains watermelon,
hierloom tomatoes, fresh basil, garlic, feta
and is the perfect summer luncheon treat!

recipe here

Happy First Day of Summer to the
Northern Hemisphere!

(it's about time!)


Birthday Chris in Provence!

Since today is a really big birthday for my adorable, sweet, funny and crazy husband Chris, here are some photos of him on our recent trip to Provence. I took these using my iPhone, and tried to capture the essence of his energy and zest for life!

I owe him so much... it was with Chris at my side that I first discovered the incredible land called Provence over twenty years ago, and we have been back there countless times, including living there for a (too short!) time.

Together we have made a bid on an incredible bastide, hiked the treacherous Gorge du Verdun, sunbathed a la francaise (yes, really!) on the beaches, hosted a huge family Provençal Thanksgiving dinner, attended countless military memorial events of WWII with our friend the drap porteau, driven from here to there and back again, getting lost on little crooked streets and one time even managed to wedge our tiny European car between the walls enclosing a VERY narrow little street... until help arrived in the form of irate villagers, pompiers and les flics.

I cannot tell you just how many croissants, petits pains du chocolate, petits suisses, baguettes and yogurts we have consumed there, nor how many cafes au lait, Oranginas, pains bagnet, salades nicoise, socca, glasses of Bandol, & moules frites we've inhaled on our daily rambles in Provence.

This then is a quick tribute to Chris in Provence... all shot last month while there on the Chic Provence Design Tour! See what you missed? :)

Chris took this of me at dawn in the cocquelicots near Bonnieux!!
an amazing photo from an amazing photographer! (check out his website on my sidebar)
photo by Chris Golson

Chris is on the right, with me and our son in law Steven at Bistro Saumane,
one of the best meals we've ever had in Provence! I love this picture Cheri took of us!

Chris at the little Guinguette on la Sorgue..
check out that Nikon D900, and early birthday gift!

always shooting, Chris captured these adorable little
French boys playing ball in the equally picturesque street!

this is how I see Chris a LOT.. leaning against a wall,
shooting.. here we are in Vaison la Romain and
he was capturing a kitty sleeping in a doorway

Chris in charge of the group photo shoot at les coquelicots..
all business!

Chris chilling with Joel at the only cafe in Oppede le Vieux.

Chris testing the wine that Jon chose for dinner for
our second evening at the villa.. he approved!

Chris is quite amused at Jon's lesson in how to pick up your roasted chicken :)
Ursula looks a bit incredulous herself!

Chris mugging for the iPhone! That's Keek next to him.

Chris really liked Joel's glasses and gave them a
test drive at Cafe de la Place in St. Remy!

Chris right after our bicycle ride.....! ready for a little nap?

Back at ya, honey... this is YOU the morning you shot
the picture of me in the cocquelicots... !

Happy Birthday, Chris!

I love you a bushel & a peck!


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thanks for visiting!... Kit

Provence Outdoor Sink

I love Edith Mezard's outdoor potting sink  in Lumieres, Provence, France where we had the 
delightful surprise of Madame's delicious cherry clafouti, chocolate cake, wine and tea
photo Kit Golson iPhone 


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Perimeter Check Early June

Bonjour tout le monde! Hope this June day finds you happy and thriving! Early this morning, about 5 am, Nicky and I went out into the garden, coffee in hand (me), bone in mouth (Nicky), to do our daily "perimeter check" of the property. We need to make sure no pesky raccoons are sleeping in the greenhouse and that our garden is still intact!

two stools right where I left them two days ago

and there's the rake, right where I left it two days ago :)

the tiny newborn tomatoes are holding their own in the garden

the greenhouse is being put to good use this year: basil, tarragon and edamame are starting in there!

the strawberry pot.. full of charm and so far, little else!

the first blush of ripening on the Santa Marias

two birds nests found while gardening this weekend... the one on the left is lined with
Nicky's soft hair, incredible birds!

all photos by Kit Golson


thanks for visiting!... Kit

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