In the last few weeks in no particular order the boiler packed up (Christmas Eve), the fridge stopped working as did the computer, the dishwasher and the back door to the garden (pretty much inoperable). The front steps started letting in water to the downstairs loo when it rains - oh and last week the washing machine blew up. G always the practical one reckons its because we had everything installed at the same time when we moved in 13 years ago - everything is coming to the end of its life (obviously the computer was newer that old)! Which being busier than ever is a massive pain in the ass! Although I'm rather getting into service washes I have to say. Not the answer I realise but I keep putting off the hunt for a washing machine and dishwasher. Next weekend I tell myself and then forget that I'm in Paris or Frankfurt or where ever. That's also the thing with old houses; you're never really done. Something always needs fixing somewhere. Not that I'm moaning, yesterday was my moany day as everyone at HQ will tell you. The schedule of no weekends, no time off since before the holidays is taking its toll. Desperate to get away and have a break to refresh. I think when weâreÂ finishedÂ with all the painting and a few other major deadlines we might escape somewhere hot, although I want the two M's with me so it makes it a little harder as there is no way they are getting on a plane! Somewhere driveable maybe the south of France but then there is this coffee problem in France (another problemo) guess I can take my own milk? I'm digressing what is the paint of the post today you ask? Yes the point. I think the most enchanting homes for me at least are ones that feel lived in and relaxed. Creating a relaxed feeling in a space takes a bit of work, you don't just plonk a sofa in a room chuck a cushion on it and it shouts relaxed! No mam. Its all the other bits and pieces all singing from the same hymn book that will convey that. The big trick is lots of texture and some pattern. Here is Maud and I, Maud is the best snugglier, whenever I plonk on this sofa up she comes for a snuggle. You'll see that we are surrounded by textures tons of them. All contrasting that is key. Unlike pattern you can never have enough texture you'll never feel like you've gone over the top. Overdose on them I say!