Tuesday, 8 November 2011


For the price of a plate of reindeer's balls in above mentioned store, I bought this marvellous object in a brilliant brocante in Carcassonne. Yes some might say it is ugly, I say it's a strangely wonderous and functional piece of furniture. Another to join our pack of odd 1950's 60's and 70's relics.
Brocante, by the way, if you are in Carca, is called 'Autrefois' and is quite near SOS music.

Saturday, 5 November 2011

Culture in the Aude

Thanyou mum, for unearthing this classic of the 1970's. Was discovered in the deep recesses of a kitchen cupboard full of foil trays and tupperware with no lids. Neglected and unloved, it has been transported to the R. S. P. O. C. T. N. E. W. (Royal society for protection of old crap things that no one else wants.) Or The Hothouse.
Now, gleaming and filled with happy cow's milk and bit of excited yogurt, it is gracing our kitchen with it's matching mustard to tile colour and friendly red light.
Also another point about this, and it's ecologic impact (or hopefully not) is that we no longer have to buy yogurt in silly little plastic pots, which are seemingly impossible to recycle here? and although it will take a tad of electricity to run, I think it's own carbon footprint will be about the size of a newt's.
The world's economy seems to be on the brink of collapse, ho hum, at least we can hopefully have low cost yogurt.

Monday, 18 July 2011

There is something wrong in the world...

When somebody would throw this out. Sue found this stunning yellow casserole pot at the TIP!!!!!!and thought we would give it a good home. We certainly shall. It is now happily installed next to our other cook pot, also yellow but round, bought at Esperaza vide grenier, happy as a couple of sunny canaries.

Saturday, 25 June 2011

Post-mat triumph.

I'm SO happy.
This is the product of many hours of close to obsessional, not lets be truthful here, obsessional, looking on 'le bon coin'/ ebay etc. Having done some work on our kitchen, the finishing touch was sort of 'dresser' thing to stock our odd collection of pots in. Went through many era's, Deco, Louis the something, 70's etc. Eventually homed in on the 50's. I knew what I wanted but all the examples seemed to be in the North of France.
This searching must be a relic left over from my previous job as a stylist in the U.K (see older post). I get an idea, and it just sort of sits on my shoulder like a nagging parrot until I find the required thing...
Found this beauty on le B.C last week, quick nip in a van, and wander on the beach as an added bonus, and its here. Amazing...and it just fits in the space too. It was cheaper than the van hire, and I saved it from probably a slow death in a charity shop as I don't thing anyone else shares our 195060/70's meubles appreciation in the Aude.
Now on the look out for an interesting T.V stand....

Sunday, 19 June 2011

la vache...no more.

Another sad day for post-matism in the hothouse. Our ancient cow colored visa has finally made its last wander...to the casse auto. I swapped the visa for a painting about seven years ago and painted it after it passed its control tecnique. It made very regular trips over the mountain pass for months at one time despite our local garage saying it was not drivable (he had obviously never been to Cuba). Gradually over the years the engine has lost its power, now reduced to milk float speed it has become a little...embarassing...Ezra started requesting to be dropped off to college a long distance away...
As the next control tecnique is looming, the insurance reminder has arrived and how ever much wire I use, the bumper will not stay on, it was time.
This is a photo from the trip to the breakers, They paid me 50 euros, I walked away...not looking back....sob.

Thursday, 9 June 2011

Dog pen.

The little runty dog (see featured mainly on hothouse blog) had his leg broken by the cat running into him......
he is not a very good example of making do. Has cost about 50 times more than the old recycled dog from the SPA, broken tail, bee eating incident, poison swallowing incident etc etc. ANYWAY, he is super on all other levels, and of course had to be mended properly, not with two sticks from the woodpile and a length of old string sadly.
Needing an enclosure to keep him in, I hunted at usual haunts, no baby play pens available, but made one out of these white wire baskets. Don't know the original usage of them but for a euro...can't grumble. Bit of wire, and voila, excellent articulated dog pen now adorning our terrace.

new life

Kettle previously featured with cork lid knob. Cork had limited life, after about six, kettle was fitted with wire lid knob. This was less satisfactory. Kettle was almost doomed when....saved by old curtain finial found in shed investigation.
Now celebrated in GOLD picture and trumpet fanfare (imaginary).

Thursday, 7 April 2011

Times they are a changing...

Yes...the hothouse has a WASHING MACHINE. Finally after 10 years of handwash and wash shop we re-constructed the bathroom and installed white gleaming machine. Think I will still hand wash a fair of clothing in the summer, partly for the fond memory of the process, to keep my peasant roots in tact, and to be able to still water parts of the garden with 'grey' water. Would like to work out away we can take all the water from the machine into a 'bassin' but as we are on the ground floor this may be complecated...will see. In the mean time, oh the joy of hanging stuff out that has been spun at 1400 (eco program of course).

Wednesday, 2 March 2011

End in sight.

Oh dear, wood pile very depleted, nice cosy feeling of wood in plenty ebbing away....
However in good P.Mat style have taken to going to the dump to find more.
This proccess makes me feel GOOD, burning wood that would otherwise be burnt to heat the atmosphere in general. I know the main 'mec' there pretty well now and he is happy to let me get into the giant wood container to forage about, I'm sure against any sort of health regs that the Marie is over stuffed with.
Yesterday procured sevral pallets, a few old windows and a fine beam. Just counting the days to real spring now...

Friday, 18 February 2011

A tale of two sofas.

The hohouse contains very little new furniture, in fact...none at all, apart from a small shelf called 'GIT' from Ikea which has never been put up.
The brown sofa story:
It came from an ebay ad. We had long thought that sitting on a small futon was no longer good for increasingly old bones in long winters. It was clean, comfy and rather wonderful until both dogs decided to really make it their own by vomiting on it after eating something...not sure what...Sorry Chris and Emma, who have taken it in the great chain of recycling. Anyway all the cushions came off, and it was too dreadful to put them back on, so we put lots of 'scatter' cushions on instead and it continued to be almost wonderful.
Red sofa story:
When we finally admitted that the layout of our front room meant that the sofa without proper cushions was not working, I looked in 'Le bon coin' for another, this time of an angle type. This one is brilliant, you can push all the elements together and create a sort of fuggy red velour evening human/dog nest. Its only been pooped on by the parrot so far, and the cat will become pet food if he scratches it.
As before mentioned Chris and Emma have pre-longed the life of our once very good quality sofa and its sort of matching chair which came from parchemin, as they have just purchased a very large rambling abode, may they serve you well.
Check out 'le bon coin' for super bargains, recycle, recycle, recycle....

Tuesday, 4 January 2011

Last remnants of Christmas

I always feel sad about 'the tree'. We are beguiled every year into buying the 'real thing' by the smell, the rustling crispness of the branches, the enthusiasm of boy person. The plastic version just wouldn't quite have the same effect. We like the wrestling with the thing, being spiked, and then sweeping up drifts of needles everyday.
I don't know as a P.Mat if we should be buying a vrai or not...apparently Paris scoops up its 24,000, or something, trees and makes lovely mulch for the green spaces, sounds pretty good...
Our 2010 tree is now in small firelighting pieces, and the needles are in newspaper parcels for the same reason. Perhaps I should enlarge on this next year and make it a ceremony of P.Matism, including a purge of all festive flab food, gorge ourselves on cabbage soup, ryvita etc, could catch on....