16 July 2017

Safari, College Tours and a Surprise

Resting leopard....Botswana

Dear Friends,

Life has been full since I last checked in! I am writing in between packing for a trip to Botswana and Zambia. This time last year, our daughter, Miss Claire, was packing for her two year assignement with the Peace Corp in Botswana. One year down and we are on our way to visit with her for the first time! I am so excited, I am busting! We are heading out on a two week safari to Zambia. I took the photo above on a previous safari through Botswana in 2005. I am hoping to have the same luck this time around. Fingers crossed!

Home....Tahilla Farm

College Tours...
I returned to Sydney a few days ago after a three week visit to Tahilla Farm. My youngest son, Connor, and I took to the highways and country roads around New England to tour colleges. It seems like yesterday when I wrote about sitting with him and Tika in a bus stop in England, the move to school in Vietnam and then onto high school in Sydney...and now he will be leaving Sydney for college in America. If you are feeling a tad confused about now...that's ok, me too. The good news is he is very excited to finally connect with his American heritage. I am excited for all the possibilities ahead of him. Ah...to be 17 again. ;)

Mr. H plans a surprise...
If you have followed Collage of Life for a while you will know that my partner in life, Mr. H, is a man of surprises.  The paint colour of Chateau Mango and the arrival of Henrietta Hippo in Vietnam (where she remains) have to be two of his biggest. My favourite of all time is his moment in England. He loves a surprise and I knew it was only a matter of time before he was at it again.

I received a message a few weeks ago from Mr. H to see if I would be at Tahilla Farm on a certain day and time to sign off on a delivery.  Knowing Mr. H, I started to break out in a cold sweat...delivery?? Two thoughts crossed my mind...he had either secretly arranged for Henrietta to be shipped to Tahilla Farm or...he had finally realized his dream, to have a life size bronze statue of a cheetah by the South African artist, Dylan Lewis. I can tell you quite honestly that neither was ringing my bells. Let's just say it has something to do with a farmhouse in New England...where bears, coyotes and bobcats roam...not elephants, hippos and cheetahs.

I tried every trick in the book to get some little hint out of him but he wouldn't budge. I had to wait and see....and lucky for me, it was one that I had been secretly wishing for.

I am taking my hat off to Mr. H for reading my last blog post! I swooned over a Kadai firebowl that I had spotted in England a few years ago. Bless his mischievous heart, he found one for Tahilla Farm and I love it! The firebowl is in place for a roaring fire with family and friends. A few more chairs and we will be ready to go.

Tahilla Farm..
It was wonderful to be back and see the gardens take shape. The house finally feels like it is coming into it's own with the landscape. I spent time with our architect, Sheldon Pennoyer, working out the details for the carriage house renovation and am excited for this next and final stage of Tahilla Farm. It's looking like it will be full steam ahead in 2018...but first, I need to finish packing for this trip!

A carriage house renovation in waiting...Tahilla Farm

I will leave you here wishing you all the best 
and sending my deepest gratitude for reading along. 
Thank You, Thank You, Thank You!

Jeanne xx

PS...if you want to go 'safari' with me, 
you can find me on Instagram here


  1. Wonderful surprise. The fire bowl is magical and gorgeous. Lawn location...I think New Hampshire requires an inspection to get a permit to use a home fire pit.

    Speaking of surprises...Your leopard photo took me by surprise as I was expecting a garden scene. Amazing photograph.

    Happy & Safe Travels

  2. So glad you got a little summer time at The Farm. Know you will enjoy your time with Miss Claire, especially after several weeks with your son. It will be nice to have him in US for the next couple of years .... well, if you ever are!

  3. I so love to read about the surprises. Cannot wait to follow the photographs of the Safari. And finally, I love the look of the landscaping around Tahilla farm. It looks like fields of lavender in southern Provence

  4. I have said it before but I will say it AGAIN!"I like that MISTER H!"
    HAVE A wonderful trip...............I know you will and I already have GOOSEBUMPS for YOU!

  5. I love surprises and this one is fabulous! I am sure that many memories will be made around that fire pit.

    Have a wonderful and safe trip to Bottswana and Zambia. I am looking forward to seeing your photos. I have yet to go on safari, and my husband has been on 3.

    Take care, enjoy your beautiful daughter!

  6. Your surprise fits right in with the landscape of Tahilla Farm..it is lovely. What adventure lie ahead on the Safari, another great photo opportunity, and time to share with your daughter. And another college student in the US, what great family holidays at the farm will be enjoyed. Love every post, every story you tell and your photos are magnificent.

  7. You lead a BIG life. I'm full of admiration.

  8. I am sure you had a blast on the safari. Did you see any wild animals?

  9. What a sweet husband you have! I am so behind on my blog reading. Have fun on all your endeavors!!


Can I just say....that I so enjoy what YOU have to say. Just a few words or a few paragraphs, no matter. If you would like to write to me directly, I would love to hear from you... jeannecollageoflife@gmail.com

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