and a happy new year to you too ….

by Sharon Santoni

After a wonderful week with the house full of three generations mixed in together, I’m finally sitting down and pulling together my thoughts and ideas for this end of year and hopefully a happy new year for all of us.

Do you still make New Year’s resolutions? I’m sorry to say that I don’t. Call it laziness, call it lack of willpower or simply me being realistic about what I am capable of sticking too!

There was a time when I would declare resolutions to “walk every morning before breakfast”, or “give up wine” or “renounce desserts” and each vain promise would last a hot minute. At my age it’s more dignified to be pragmatic, don’t you think?

So this may be a resolution-free zone, but I do at least love to use these last days of the year to reflect, to take stock and to plan for the months ahead.

On a personal level, and having just spent a pretty boisterous Christmas with the whole family, including our first grandchild, I am determined to see more of everyone during the year ahead. I am so happy to see the mutual love and encouragement that abound here. I think we’d all agree that a family isn’t made for judgement or competition, there’s enough of that elsewhere. A family is made for honesty, for support, for helping to thrash through ideas and for cheering each other on when times get less easy. And mostly for having fun together.

As far as my house here goes, I have some exciting projects in the garden for next year, and we’ll soon be planting some new features. I am grateful to Philippe Dubreuil for his generous and timely advice.

And here at MFCH, we are taking stock of the year behind us, and feeling extremely fortunate and grateful for our amazing readers, subscribers, clients and guests. Without your enthusiasm, your custom and your support, our work here would be pointless. Un grand merci!

The MFCH Team has seen some changes this year. We waved farewell and Merci to Alice and Ally who have worked on the magazine since it was launched, and we welcomed two new writers, Nicola and Maddy; as well as Ani and Olivia.

Sarah still manages the Box and Boutique, and Natalie takes care of the magazine customer care, and also liaises with our tour clients.

I am grateful for this small dynamic team, and looking forward to being brave on new adventures together in the year to come.

The MFCH Magazine

Our magazine subscribers in the USA will hopefully notice that their copies arrive more promptly this year. We have changed our printer to one with a more centralised shipping hub, and it seems like most of our regular subscribers received their January issue before Christmas. We also have some jaw-dropping content for the 2023 editions, and I can’t wait for you to see the photos.

The MFCH Tours

In 2022 we created a new MFCH Tour to Dordogne and also welcomed guests to Provence, Normandy and Paris. For 2023 we return to Provence, we go to Dordogne and we bring in a new tour to the Loire Valley, as well as inviting guests to new destinations in Normandy.

I am particularly excited to having Lucy Hunter with us for two of our tours in 2023, and she will be sharing her floral magic with me and our small group of clients as we stay in a chateau in Provence and in Normandy.

Photo and flowers by Lucy Hunter

The MFCH Box & Boutique

In February our first MFCH Box of the year will be very special. We have invited photographer, author and artist Jamie Beck to curate the February box and we can’t wait to share her selection with you, along the theme An American In Provence!

Photo by Jamie Beck

For the coming year, we have some very exciting new brands and products lined up for the Boxes but also for our on-line Boutique. We’ll be running regular giveaways during the year, and introducing our clients to the very best of France.

New for 2023 – MFCH Travel

And our big news at the start of the year will be our new MFCH Travel section. We know that not everyone is looking for a group tour, but that a lot of people would like a hand creating their own trips to France, and we are here to help. I’ll bring you all the details in January, so watch this space.

In February 2023 I’ll celebrate the 13th birthday of My French Country Home. MFCH will be a teenager! It started out as a simple blog, churned out on a steam-driven computer, and I had no idea that the blog would lead to books, a magazine, a box and tours. This is entirely thanks to you!

To you our readers, our followers and our clients, we wish you a very Happy New Year, and peace and laughter in the twelve months ahead. Stay safe, be well and see you next year!

15 comments

Diane F. December 30, 2022 - 8:48 pm

Your thoughts and words are lovely as is your MFCH magazine. I am looking forward to the next issue already as Provence is such a dream! I have been there once and will be returning in January/February.

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Kim Cotton December 30, 2022 - 10:32 pm

Love all of your ideas Sharon, you’re always inspiring in the most gentle and creative way. Seeing France through your eyes is so delightful. And on gratulations on your first grandchild, a beautiful new journey in itself. Happy New Year! Kim

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Betty December 30, 2022 - 11:06 pm

Thank you for the kind New Year wishes, and I wish the same for you!

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Pamela December 30, 2022 - 11:31 pm

Happy New Year to you and your family! I’m very excited for your new travel section!
Gods blessings to you. Pamela

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Ellen December 30, 2022 - 11:47 pm

Wishing your team and you a New Year full of kindness and compassion and exciting travels to the beautiful French Countryside!
Thank you for making the world a happier place Sharon!

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Pat December 30, 2022 - 11:48 pm

I’ve enjoyed your blog for many years now but the magazine is beyond words! I savor every page and return to past issues. Best wishes for a wonderful 2023!

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Rebecca Chapman December 30, 2022 - 11:54 pm

I am becoming one of your “American Girlfriend’s,” learning and being inspired by the style and e’lan of living with a French spirit.
Merci, Sharon
Rebecca

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Penny Kweder December 31, 2022 - 1:26 am

Love every thing you do!
I need help in reaching Michele, for touring.
Thank you

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Marla Patterson December 31, 2022 - 1:29 am

What a lovely message!! So much to look forward to! Bonne Année

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Cassie Keturakis December 31, 2022 - 7:05 am

Thank you, Sharon and wonderful staff for all of your beautiful and inspiring dedication. I’ve followed you, Sharon, since buying and reading every page of your book MY COUNTRY FRENCH HOME. I love the magazine and relish each and every page. I recently bought Jamie Beck’s book. . . Her photographs and prose…Inspiring! I’ll look forward to meeting you in person when I embark on the tour to Dordogne. May God’s blessings abound to you, your family, and MFCH staff. Cassie

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Pam S. December 31, 2022 - 7:56 am

Hi Sharon!!

It’s been awhile since leaving a comment. I remember when you first started your blog and absolutely loved it. France has always been a heartwarming country to me, it feels like a cousin you can say. Being born in Montreal, France feels like an extension of myself.

To see you now where this journey has taken you is so wonderful!! I’m so happy for you as I feel the excitement that 2023 will bring.

Congratulations on your first grandchild and now having three generations living, now how beautiful is that?!!

My wish for you for 2023 is much continued success with all your life’s adventures wherever they take you. For you to continue to be happy, healthy and take as much time to grow a great relationship with your grandchild.

Love Pam S.
xox

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Y December 31, 2022 - 2:13 pm

Pure loveliness through and through. May the new year bring blessings to you and yours.

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Susan December 31, 2022 - 2:16 pm

Happy New Year to you and yours, Sharon!
I so enjoy your lovely elegance in bringing France into my life. Looking forward to your 2023 blogs.

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Gay McCormick December 31, 2022 - 2:52 pm

Happy new year to you. You are an inspiration to me!

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david terry December 31, 2022 - 8:45 pm

Dear Sharon,
What a predictably lovely posting. I’ve always looked askance at New Year’s resolutions (why start flailing one’s self over what you’ve left undone in the previous year?) and New Year’s parties ………..
at which all too many folks get too drunk and generally try to be boisterous..,..when most of them just need a nap after the endless exertions of Christmas, family, etcetera).
How much more sensible and gratifying to spend today/this evening being consciously grateful for the past year, as you suggest? And, yes, I noticed how gracefully you thanked all the folks who support you and MFCH.
As for me (I know that you’re aching to know)? The only celebration plans here are getting naked with Morgan and taking baths together. He’s seven now, but still hasn’t learned to bathe himself. Isn’t that just….awful?

Here’s wishing you and yours all the best for the upcoming year,
David Terry
http://www.davidterryart.com

P.S. Do you know how many times I’ve gotten emails/comments/facebook postings in which someone tells me and everyone else all about something, but fails to mention that, actually, the name doesn’t refer to a child or spouse? Just for the record?…..”Morgan” is a twelve pound, very dirty cairn-terrier.

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