Every few months, I like sharing particular Instagram accounts that I follow. Today, I am featuring one of my favorites - chateaugudanes. The account description: "France. Follow the story of an Australian family currently restoring a Chateau in the South of France."
The Chateau, located in a small town called Chateau Verdun, was built in the early 1700s. Through the centuries the beautiful estate fell under significant disrepair, but still hold its neoclassical grandeur. Last year, an Australian family purchased the property and in November 2013, began an extensive renovation project to bring much needed tender loving care to the picturesque manor. The family maintains a blog to follow the refurbishing of the chateau, share stories of the Chateau's past, and celebrate what is yet to come!
"The past - clear and defined, the present - expected chaos....and the future - a surprise!"
When I traveled abroad in France last year, I stayed at an old farm house estate, La Giraudiere. The home had fallen into disarray after decades of neglect. La Giraudiere has been under renovation for many years, in attempt to restore the property to its old charm and splendor. Part of my time at the estate involved working on the home and land. La Giraudiere still has a way to go before it reaches complete restoration, but is a true testament to creative vision, hard work, passion, discipline, inspiration, and the triumph of bringing something back to life.
Speckled throughout the countryside, abandoned estates and chateaus are a frequent sight. As families moved from the countryside and farm life for metropolitan areas, the properties were left, neglected. In some instances these once-beautiful estates have become almost unrecognizable - overtaken by nature, with trees and ivy encompassing their walls. You would drive by fields and spot a collection of trees nestled together in the center of the meadow, after a couple of glances, you'd realize there was a home underneath the arbor canopy! It was crazy, I had never seen anything like it!
Any renovation project takes a lot of time, effort, and expense. But refurbishing a multiple century-old chateau classifies in an entirely different realm. As charming as it may seem to reside in such historic quarters, let's face it - it may be the closest you'll ever get to "Princess" status - it take A LOT of dedication, love, and patience to make it happen.
It is such a joy to watch the family embark on this adventurous journey. As they make their way through all the challenges, they capture the most gorgeous moments - absolutely breathtaking scenes. I find their pictures help put not only their adventure, and the inevitable hardships that have come along with it, in perspective - but much of our own day-to-day routine as well. Life is full of beautiful moments and it just takes stepping away from the worry, the hustle and bustle, the cynicism, and the impossible, to look instead at the wonders right in front of us!
Life truly, is a wonderful adventure.