I was so excited to see Brooke and her family arriving at our home on Saturday !! All the way down from Los Angeles to that small village in Belgium where we live! We were so pleased to meet each other!! The first moments I couldn’t believe this was happening! But if felt as we had known each other for a long time! And in fact it is! Two years of reading each other’s blog and emailing, abled us to know so much about each other’s life and about things that keep us busy in life!

Brooke, Steve and her children are wonderful, lovely people!! And it wasn’t hard at all to start conversations with this family! They are all adorable!

I have to confess that I didn’t took that much pictures because I was too excited I guess, but I do know that Steve has taken a lot of pictures and I am sure you will see more of our meeting on Brooke’s blog Velvet & Linen the next days!


2011-06-26_194816Brooke and me.


After we had a glass of champagne to celebrate our meeting, we made a little house tour.

Foto 023Unfortunately the weather was not that gorgeous. It was too chilly and we weren’t able to take the apero or to have lucnch outdoors.


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But as you can see we went outside to see our outbuilding in which Brooke and Steve were very interested. They loved the weathered oak we used for our typical Belgian outbuilding.

Foto 011 Brooke enjoyed our garden!

 Foto 012 As being an architect Steve loved to know more about the Belgian architectural construction details!

Foto 009 So I am sure that Jan and Steve had lots of things to tell each other about architectural materials and construction! That was just wonderful!

Jan assured me that it was so interesting talking with Steve and that he would have loved to have more time to spend with Steve!


And then we invited the Giannetti family to have lunch with us.

Foto 005 The day before I had prepared the table setting in our dining room.

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And it was just wonderful to have Brooke, Steve, Charlie, Nick en Leila at our table! We had so much to talk about. We have so much in commun! And I agreed with Brooke that in fact it is much easier to chat with blogfriends than with the people of our close environment, even knowing them since a long time. We really communicate in another way with our blogfriends, because we are more or less interested in the same things!


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In my previous post about Brooke’s visit I showed you the pictures of the Menu courses we were going to have as lunch (here).

As a starter we had the Asparagus prepared in ‘the Flemish way’ (for a recipe click here).

As main course we have chosen for a typical Belgian meal, Pork cheeks (for a recipe click here).

And as dessert we had the Italian Pannacotta (for a recipe click here).


Between the courses we made an inside home tour.

Foto 020 An animated chat in the wine cellar.

Foto 026 Brooke sitting in our library.

Foto 027 I just love this picture of Brooke! She is totally wrapped up in the conversation! As we know here!


While our boys Charlie, Nick and Anthony stayed at home, we drove Brooke, Steve and Leila to a merchandiser of antique building materials.

Foto 028 Brooke with the owner.

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Brooke and Steve were searching for some antique doors to bring into their future home ‘Patina Farm’.

Foto 035 Steve is checking the dimensions of the doors.

Foto 036 Bingo! Brooke added her name on the appropriate doors.


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Brooke, Steve and Jan nosed in the cabinet with antique architectural hardware.

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After a few hours we drove home again! Time went by much toooo fast!!


My friends I have to tell you something special !!!!

Brooke brought me a present!!!! I was totally excited!! Can you imagine, Brooke offered me the only copy she already had from their new book she and Steve wrote ‘PATINA STYLE’ !!!!!!!!!

I couldn’t believe!! That was sooo generous of Brooke and Steve! Brooke thought about it that it wouldn’t be easy for me to find the book here in Belgium. And yes indeed, I couldn’t pre-order it yet!

My dear friends I want you to know that the book is fantastic, fabulous, gorgeous!!! I am so pleased to have it on my coffee table! And I will be so proud to tell my clients and friends about our wonderful and talented friends Brooke and Steve and to show them this wonderful and precious gift that this book means to me!

Brooke you are a sweetie (she really is!!) ! Thank you so much for this precious gift.

Foto 048‘PATINA FARM’ on my coffee table! I really recommend you to pre-order the book!   HERE.


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As on Saturday the weather was bad, yesterday we had a wonderful sunny day! Incredible I know! But that is the way it is in Belgium!

Believe me friends, yesterday I was a bit sad!! Our time with Brooke and Steve was definitely too short! Jan and me talked about our meeting with the Giannetti family the other day and realized that there were so many more things that we would have loved to talk about with them! Unfortunately the day was too short! But there is one thing that I am sure about! We will stay in touch with Brooke and Steve and we would be so pleased to help them with the construction of their future home ‘Patina Farm’.


So yesterday afternoon, installed in our garden, I started to read ‘Patina Farm’ and couldn’t stop! I finished the book and I just loved reading it! Brooke and Steve are giving us wonderful tips to decorate our home, together with the most beautiful inspirational pictures!


Brooke and Steve, you are just wonderful people ! Jan and me are so pleased to call you friends! We are so thankful to you for the respect and friendschip we have received from you both!

We are looking forward to meet you and your family in Los Angeles next year!