Monday, April 9, 2012

Easter Sunday

As Richard wasn't working this Easter we spent a lovely sunday 'en famille',

with a leisurely breakfast, easter egg hunt and a visit to La Flatiere - a catholic church and spiritual retreat nestled high up in Les Houches, a neighboring  village.  We avoided going durning Mass time as with Rémi and Tino in tow this would have inevitably ended in disaster.
Lyliane (in the middle)
We were given a 'private' guided tour by Lyliane who is my father-in-law's cousin and who has lived there for the past 47 years!  A 'community' of 40 people, who have relinquished their 'earthly' possessions live as permanent residents and look after not only the day to day running and maintenance of things but also take care of any guests who come there on a 'retreat'.   Guests can either stay in one of the main buildings or stay in individual cabins in the wooded park just behind the main buildings.

There is no fixed charge and guest leave what ever amount they wish.  Lyliane, at 80 years of age drives a tractor, cooks for large groups, changes beds and is the in-house electrician! she is also fantastic with unruly 7 and 3 year olds!!
What is incredible about this place is that since starting off in the 1700's as just a chapel and house it has now become quite a large complex of 'seemingly' separate buildings build on a steep mountain side.  Appearances are in this case deceptive!! as all the buildings are linked by underground tunnels!!
Thus you can go from down here (white building)

via a set of tunnels

up to here (4 'levels' higher)

inside the above building

without getting your feet wet!

They get their water from three mountain streams and now have mains electricity which enables them to cater for disabled visitors also.

AND to add to the days enjoyment Rémi and Tino were so well behaved!


  1. oh wow emma, i really enjoyed reading about la flatiere. i've oftened wondered what it would be like to do something like that. live such a life.
    the boys are so cute and look like they are happy with their easter suprises. the knit bunnies are darling.

  2. Wow, What neat place. I love the cute bunnies too.

  3. It looks like you had a wonderful Easter, and La Flatiere is so beautiful, thank you so much for sharing about it.
    xo xo

  4. what a beautiful place to spend Easter. I love the bunnies in overalls pocket, cute:)