About ViV

Unfortunately Viv died on 5th July 2016 but it was her wish that this blog should never be deleted.  It is now adminstered by me, her daughter Sally, but please be kind to me as I didn’t inherit the literary skills.  Mum was my constant proof reader!  She helped us set up a blog when we went off on our travels to the Turks and Caicos Islands in 2010 but it is my husband that does most of the blogging on our blog now!
Sally

Having finished seven years of online studies with the Open University in 2010, culminating in the pomp of a degree ceremony, life became rather dull until the stimulation of Napowrimo, and poetry prompt sites perked me up again.


I’m sometimes known as the silly old bat, potty about poetry, passionate for patchwork, family, friends, music and a quiet life.  The pains of age prevent much physicality: gone are the days of riding and roaming, tennis and squash. The gentle walk up to the village is my daily exercise.

  
I live in rural Normandy in Northwest France with my retired dentist husband and spend my days quilting, writing and blogging.

 

Update:  January 2014.  Last July we sold our lovely house and moved into a rented “plein pied” (bungalow to anglophones) in the next village, to save us the labour of a big garden, and make life easier for this increasingly decrepit poet.  We are very lucky to have found the right house but retain the typical open views of this part of Normandy.

view from new house

view from new house

view after the maize harvest
view after the maize harvest

our new kitchen clock.

our new kitchen clock.

 

86 Responses to About ViV

  1. Chas Spain says:

    Bonjour Viv – so excited to be joining you as one of the Sisterhood of the Travelling Sketchbook – look forward to seeing all the beautiful contributions each of the sisterhood will add. (I hope I’m up to the standard :>)

    Liked by 1 person

  2. RAIMBAULT Marie-Jo says:

    Bonjour Vivienne !
    Nous allons apprendre l’italien ensemble (FutureLearn) !
    Et je pourrais apprendre l’anglais en lisant ton magnifique blog(ue) !
    Take care !
    Marie-Jo, Marijo

    Like

  3. Nadia says:

    Sounds like you have found a great place to retire to. We just recently retired to the Dordogne and loving it.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Bonjour Viv, I love your poems and your blog is so interesting. We travel through France when we come back from Spain and I love the country but my dear husband cant stand the French. Am not sure he finds the Spanish any easier.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. julespaige says:

    Dear Viv,
    The news has too much devastation. I can only hope that any friends and family that you have are all safe.
    https://julesgemstonepages.wordpress.com/2015/11/14/just-karma-41-for-november-2015-wp/

    Liked by 2 people

  6. I had to stop by and see who I was talking to and I love your blog. I’m a quilter too but not of your caliber. I show the work of others in our area. I’m a beginner and love the work. I’ll do it as long as the eyes hold out. Fortunately, I can make the print really big on the computer so I can write quite a while. I’ll be back.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Hi Viv! I just wanted to let you know I nominated you for the One Lovely Blog Award. You can see what it is over on my blog post today. ~hugs~

    Jess

    Liked by 1 person

  8. lumiscatter says:

    Hi Viv, how lovely to stumble across your blog! I frequented Firm but Fair for a bit, but haven’t written any fiction for a while now. I’m looking forward to having a good look around! x

    Like

  9. I just found your blog and loved the about page. As I scrolled through the truly gorgeous photos of your home I realized, I hate you.

    But I wish I were you:)

    Like

  10. Jackie says:

    Dear Viv,
    I discovered your blog via Doodlemum’s & am enjoying reading your work. Hoping you are now settled in your new home & much better after your hospital stay! By the way,my mother lives in Normandy too but in Calvados not far from Caen,it’s a beautiful part of the country. Keep up the good work, thankyou

    Like

  11. melanie says:

    Hi – Bonjour de Toulouse!🙂 Glad to have come across your awesome blog… Normandy rules and rocks!🙂 My very best & à+! Mélanie

    Like

  12. lidipiri says:

    Hi Viv! Am in France now and thinking of going to Normandy for a few days. Would you recommend?

    Like

  13. You are truly inspiring! I love your passion for writing! I hope to write poetry all my life too!
    Thank you.

    Like

  14. purple says:

    Thank you Viv for visiting my blog. I have Followed yours and look forward to spending some time here reading through your poetry. May you stay creative and continue to bless others with your words (and quilts).

    Like

  15. Tino says:

    I have just read of your laptop problems and could only think to reply here rather than spoil the post there.

    What you need is what is called an ‘Enclosure’

    Enter Hard Drive Enclosure in Google or on Amazon, there are lots to chose from. I use a Seagate model.

    Remove the hard drive from your old machine and insert into the enclosure [beware, there are 2 sizes of hard drives in common use 2.5 inches and 3.5 inches and also two makes most common being SATA] you get a lead supplied to connect to your new machine and you can then transfer anything you want from your old hard drive to your new machine. You can then wipe the old hard drive and you have an instant new storage facility at very little cost. I have used this method for a long time now because I like to recycle where possible. It also bridges that problem with your USB ports. Hope that helps.

    Like

    • vivinfrance says:

      Thank you very much. . I do have a portable hard drive but it is about 6″ x 4″, so that can’t be what you mean. I shall get on to Google ASAP I may need to wait until my techie son comes, but as he’s just come back from 3 weeks in China it won’t be any time soon. How do I find out what size I need?

      Like

      • Tino says:

        When you remove the hard drive from the machine, there will be labels visable with all the info you require to purchase the right enclosure. The enclosure is similar to a portable hard drive. But if you cannot link a storage device directly to your machine, then it is the only way to access the info on the hard drive which you can then store elsewhere or transfer to a new machine.

        Like

        • vivinfrance says:

          Wow I am a bit hamfisted, and hesitate to undo anything! Do you think it would be a good idea to take the whole thing to the genius young man in the computer shop? Unfortunately, I can’t buy a new laptop in France because at my advanced age I am incapable of using anything other than a QWERTY keyboard, which you can’t get in France..

          At the moment, I am sending stuff to myself by email and accessing it on the antiquated pc to print out, but it is laborious and I don’t get the layout etc that I want.

          Like

          • Tino says:

            Sorry, seldom online over the weekend.
            If you are in any doubt about what you are doing and worried about losing content you dont have stored elsewhere, then yes, please take it to someone who knows what they are doing. He might know of something else that can be done without remving the hard drive. When I faced the same dilema, the Enclosure was the only viable route I could find that I was able to do myself.
            I have just looked on Amazon.Fr and they have numerous QWERTY laptops to chose from across a diverse pricerange.
            Ihope you manage to get the situation sorted out.

            Like

  16. Viv, PJ and I just want to wish you a happy New Year. It was a pleasure meeting you in the parvis of the cathedral at Coutances. Next time in Normandy, we’ll make sure we have more time so that we can meet Jock. Best wishes to you both.

    Like

  17. You probably have a drawer full of these – but I’ll do it anyway, ‘cos you do qualify:
    I have nominated you for a Very Inspiring Blogger Award. I hope you will accept the nomination. The blurb is on my page.

    Like

  18. I’ve found this happy place via Tilly’s blog. I’m surprised to see your connection with the OU though. I’m lecturing one OU course at the moment. The OU and WordPress are both truly amazing families.

    Like

  19. seingraham says:

    Thought I’d heard via some grapevine or another that you’d hit a rough patch health-wise … your poem and a few posts seem to indicate likewise … hope things are looking up and that you’re on the road to recovery. Your cheery voice and wonderful writing is most definitely missed around the poetic byways – seriously Viv, hope you’re okay. You are missed!

    Like

  20. Viv I just read on We Write Poems that you were having a go at the hospital. I sincerely hope that you are doing well and return home soon. I will keep you in my thoughts and best wishes.
    Regards,
    Donald

    Like

  21. Viv!!! I have something special for YOU!!! I know it may be a little bit before you see it but I offer this very heartfelt nomination in hopes that on your return it will bring you joy!! You make my blogging world brighter “sister!!’

    http://wordrustling.wordpress.com/2012/11/24/%E2%99%A5-sisterhood-of-the-world-bloggers-award-%E2%99%A5/

    Like

  22. Alice says:

    I think I have met a kindred spirit! Poetry–quilting–learning–writing–yep!

    Like

  23. What a beautiful home you have! I am so glad we have met for now I will follow your beautiful blog and oh your poetry, and the quilting, why we will just get along greatly. i can not sew a stitch but remember back in the days (just about the time God created dirt) being raised by my gram she taught me to quilt, alas hands and fingers don’t work quite well enough anymore for the detail handwork, so I will just enjoy the beauty others present. God bless my new blogging friend!

    Like

    • vivinfrance says:

      The hands don’t make stitches as small these days, and they eyes have problems threading needles, but I keep at it. Creating things is vital to me, even if a lot of them get eaten!

      Like

      • lenwilliamscarver says:

        Amen! I persevere with the keyboard as much as I can, and take the daily drops for the glaucoma myself. I have not been through your whole blog yet but would love to see photos of your quilts, I have a small collection and when I figure out how to put my own photos on my blog I would like to show some of the quilts I have. Have a beautiful, blessed day Viv!🙂

        Like

        • vivinfrance says:

          In the header bar, under Jock’s Embroideries. Adding photos is easy peasy in WordPress. I used to scatter quilts etc in my normal blog, but then I learned how to add new pages, which makes things easier to find.

          Like

  24. gertygiggles says:

    I have just found your blog and I’m loving it

    Like

  25. restlessjo says:

    Hi silly old bat! (takes one to know one) I know you don’t “do” awards but I’ve “tagged” you in my latest post. Not an award as such and you might be interested. I won’t take offense if not. http://restlessjo.wordpress.com/2012/05/22/kreativly-tagged/

    Like

  26. Jo Woolf says:

    Hi Viv,

    I have been nominated for a Versatile Blogger Award, and one of the conditions is that the recipient then nominates seven other bloggers whose writing they enjoy.

    I’ve picked you, because I really enjoy reading your blog and your poetry.

    If you’ve won multiple awards already, I am sorry for landing this on you again! It can be a bit time-consuming to compile the response. There doesn’t seem to be any official regulation to the VBA (or any other blog award) so it’s all pretty informal and voluntary.

    Here are the ‘rules’ as I understand them:

    You thank the person who nominated you and post a link to their site.
    You nominate seven other blogs for the same award and link to them.
    You tell these people that you’ve nominated them.
    You share seven things about yourself.

    If you wish to post a VBA logo on your site, there’s one on my blog post, or you can probably find one by searching WordPress. Here’s a link to my post:

    http://jowoolf.wordpress.com/2012/04/29/29th-april-roll-of-honour/

    Congratulations! And thank you again for hosting such a lovely blog.
    With best wishes,
    Jo

    Like

    • vivinfrance says:

      Jo, this is a great honour – totally undeserved. But I decided a long time ago that I was not going to accept any of these award thingies: they strike me as being not much removed from chain letters. So thank you, but no thanks.

      Like

      • Jo Woolf says:

        Thanks, Viv – I know where you’re coming from and I am tempted to share your view. That’s why I warn people not to share sensitive information. It’s hard to strike a fine balance!

        Like

  27. Nice to meet you! My friend, Les at Time Out For Mom, introduced me to you by posting a poem you wrote – “The Wooing O’t”. It was a brilliant poem! I host a poetry linky every tuesday and Les submitted one where she showcased your poetic talent for all her readers to enjoy!

    Anywho, such a beautiful place you live in. Someday, I will visit France. It’s on my bucket list. Until then, I’ll have to satisfy my French longings by visiting your blog often. 😉

    Like

  28. Jerome lee says:

    Hi Viv,
    Saw your post on Ulric cross in caribbean Aircrew WW2. Ulric does not use the internet. For his phone number, please contact me via e-mail.
    Regards, jerome

    Like

  29. GJ Scobie says:

    I have nominated you for the Versatile Blogger Award. Details at gjscobie.wordpress.com🙂

    Like

    • vivinfrance says:

      That’s very kind of you, and I am honoured, but I have long made a point of refusing these awards
      which I’ve found are akin to chain letters! So thanks, but no thanks.

      Like

  30. sonsy lass says:

    Wishing you a very Happy New Year, Viv – not only does your poetry give me as much pleasure and encouragement today as it did when we started out as students but it is my path back to the world of words and writing when I occasionally escape from dirty socks and domesticity!

    Like

    • viv blake says:

      Susanne, a Happy new year to you too. Thank you so much for visiting – it’s been a long time since there’s been anything on your blog. What are you doing now – apart from washing socks!

      Like

  31. Mel says:

    Hi Viv, I found your blog via Celi/thekitchensgarden’s blog. I love your way with words! Have bookmarked your site and look forward to reading more of your writing.

    Like

  32. Penelope Shuttle says:

    Hello Viv,
    Happy New Year!
    Sorry to be out of touch so long, end of last year was all exhaustion and keeping my head down in Cornwall.
    Hoping your writing flourishes – well, I see from the blog that it sure does!
    Will keep in touch more now, and looking forward to my visit to Normandie in April with the retreat, hoping to see you then,
    can you send me your email,
    love,
    Pennyx

    Like

  33. kate58 says:

    Your life sounds wonderful! And I so admire you for obtaining a degree at this point in your life. Have added you to my blogroll – hope you don’t mind! 🙂

    Like

  34. Gamma Sharon says:

    All of it sounds wonderful, except the pains of age… I understand that one!

    Like

  35. Hello Viv! I enjoy your blog so much and I’ve awarded you with a Liebster http://clsostarich.wordpress.com/2011/11/23/liebster-pile-up/

    Like

  36. gigihawaii says:

    What a nice blog you have! An congratulations on your graduation!

    Like

  37. Your life is what I dream my life will be when I retire. We have so much in common, poetry, patchwork and music, only I’d have to add scrapbooking into that as well. Unfortunately time is lacking for all so I just stick to poetry for now. Love your blog🙂

    Like

  38. Old Raven says:

    You sound like one worth knowing!

    Like

  39. Gown says:

    Big thumbs up – thanks!

    Like

  40. Tilly Bud says:

    I’ve only just noticed this page! It’s about time you had one.

    I love your graduation pic.

    Like

  41. comingeast says:

    Where are you from originally? You certainly have chosen a beautiful place to live. Good for you, pursuing that degree and achieving it!

    Like

    • vivinfrance says:

      Born in outer London, moved lots of times, but mostly lived in theEnglish countryside. Yes, we are so lucky to be here, with quietness, gorgeous scenery and beaches nearby.

      Like

  42. TheMsLvh says:

    What a beautiful place Viv. Incredible view. Would love to join you on a stroll. Have a wonderful summer!

    Like

  43. Dear Viv,
    Thank you for your most kind and appreciative comment I read at Poets United for my poem Loneliness’ I feel honored.

    Like

  44. Vivienne: Congratulations on your degree, and I can’t think of a better place to enjoy the educated life than Normandy. Bonne chance! RT

    Like

  45. Susannah says:

    I love the look of your house, lots of light I should imagine! and your view is beautiful.

    Like

  46. vivinfrance says:

    Thank you Peggy. Yes, I moan about the winters a bit, but the rest of the year is gorgeous here: not too hot (heat doesn’t suit me), just right.

    Like

  47. Peggy Goetz says:

    Now I see where you live! Lovely home and lovely area. So much green, which is probably going strong right about now. We lived in the Netherlands twice for about a year each time and the weather was quite a shock to this Southern Californian. I did come to realize how very marvelous spring is in places where winters are cold and dull. We visited France several times and I tried to dig out my long buried years of studying
    French, which came out hopelessly mixed with Dutch. Enjoy your spring days.

    Like

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