Friday, 17 September 2010


Canal de Nivernais on board canal boat "Magnifique"!!

I can't believe a year has gone by since our canal trip in France last year!

On Wednesday 16 September 2009,
six of us embarked on our week afloat on the
Canal de Nivernais in Burgundy.

We started our journey in the pretty village of Chatel Censoir

Accommodation for our first night was in the 17th century villa

Maison Saint-François.

Our very attentive hosts Michel and Michelle Samson have

restored this beautiful old building which they now run as a Chambre d'hôte.

The next morning we boarded our good vessel "Le Magnifique"

and set off on our canal adventure.

Our boat was well equipped with four cabins, all with en suites.

The large main saloon had a table and comfortable seating.

There was also a galley (aka kitchen) with great cooking facilities -

however, apart from making tea and coffee and the occasional

piece of toast - we neglected to use it... more on that later!

Entering our first canal - it looks so narrow, so our master

mariners took things very quietly....

waiting patiently while the water level rose to the top

this is typical of the lock keepers houses. Mostly, they are well

looked after with pots of brightly coloured annuals.

Several also had displays of friendly gnomes and animals as well!!

Our lock keeper waiting for the water to reach the top before he opens the gate.

Click on the photo to see the colourful flower baskets on the lock gates too!

Phew! We made it and the boat is still in one piece - no scratches!!

Bridges everywhere along the canal

Each morning we rode our bikes to the village boulangerie

where we boughtour baguettes, croissants, pain au chocolate,

and scrummy pastries for eating later in the day!!

Usually there was a market where we filled our baskets

with delicious ham, pate, tomatoes and lettuce for the baguettes.

Perfectly ripe rockmelons were our favourite fruit,

they were so sweet - ooh I would love a piece as I write this!!

Another pretty bridge... if you click on the photo you will see the

baskets of colourful geraniums!

You will also see our New Zealand flag proudly

displaying our logo "the Silver Fern".

Sometimes, we three girls rode our bikes along the tow path

between the villages.

We easily beat the boat which managed only 5-6 knots!!!

The landscape was never boring

Each evening we went ashore into the village for dinner.

Usually we had a choice of restaurant and always the food was amazing.

We had only one rule on the boat, we three girls decided

we were not cooking meals during our 7 day cruise,

I'm sure you all agree wholeheartedly with that rule!!! Yea!!!

Approaching Auxerre where we spent our last night together.

There was a huge number of canal boats here and we met some

interesting people.

Auxerre is an old town, the Church of St-Germain has frescoes

that were painted in 850 AD, some of the oldest in France.

Early evening we enjoyed an illustrated talk in the Gothic

Cathédrale St-Étienne.
Then we enjoyed our 'last supper' together at a quay side

restaurant with amazing traditional French food.

Back to the boat for our last sleep afloat....

Au revoir "Canal de Nivernais", you treated us well and

we enjoyed our time with you!

PS: My friend Freda of "Sew Whats New" is having a
Giveaway to celebrate her 300th post! Please hop
over to her blog here check out her amazing work
and enter her draw!

Thursday, 2 September 2010


As part of Carole's Journal Class

we included paper napkins/tissue serviettes

into our journal pages.

One bright classmate suggested

we have a napkin swap...
As I've never been part of a swap before
I thought it was a great idea!

AND I can't resist paper napkins.

Sooo, everyone sent 10 napkins of the same design

to Carole who organised the swap.

Just look at this bevy of beauties

I received

they arrived in this envelope.

I just love going to the letter box

and finding packages like this!

I was wondering
which is my FAVE napkin...
the mere fact that they are

"World Travellers"
and were once part of
someone elses collection
makes each one so special.
They're all beautiful
and I just LOVE them all!

Thank you Carole for co-ordinating
our swap - it was fun!

Here's another view
don't you love them too?

YOU can still join in!

If you would like to do Carole's

class you can by going here.

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