Home for the Holidays

T’was the week before Christmas, when I had the LMD staff up to the country.  Bay leaf garlands and wreaths were hung by the mantels with care,  in hopes of ending the work year with some holiday cheer. It was the perfect day…

11:00 AM A balmy 19 degree day in Staatsburgh, New York.  The LMD crew arrived and we promptly made 4 warm fires, 3 indoors and a giant campfire blazing bright and hot.  There was new-fallen snow and the sun and warm flames from the fireplace gave everyones cheeks a beautiful glow.


Tawana went straight to the kitchen and made us a hearty lunch of homemade meatballs in a red sauce with plenty of crusty bread.  Lizz began rolling out buttery dough and setting up colorful icing stations for a decorating cookie session, that was made extra special using her aunt’s vintage cookie cutters.  Rebecca, John and Felipe headed to the artists studio to hang colorful pinatas for some late night merriment.  There were lots of creatures stirring, but thankfully no mice!


12:00 PM Fizzy champagne cocktails with a sugar cube laced in angostura bitters were lovingly made by Tawana and Mike and passed around as we all got into the Christmas decorating spirit.  It’s a lot of fun to dream up elaborately themes parties for my clients but at home, this Christmas was all about simplicity and the raw beauty of a wintery landscape.  We hung garland made out of magnolia leaves and jute rope, dotted several rooms with tons of paperwhites and clear lights.  Keeping things simple, chic and wild.  I cut down my own fir trees.  Potted and mulched them in giant pinecones and besides some clear twinkly lights, they were left almost as naked as the day they were grown.


1:30 PM We ate, drank and decorated and then settled down for a long winter’s nap.  Rebecca dozed off on the coyote blanket, the men curled up next to a crackling fire and I fell asleep watching Charlie Brown Christmas.


6:00 PM Taxis arrive and dashed us away to Gigi’s, a cozy Italian restaurant in Rhinebeck.  We relaxed, laughed and toasted to each other, to a great work year and to friendship.  Back home, we sipped a few Sazeracs in the library, by far the coziest room in the house and then found our way to the artist’s studio, by far the most raucous space on the property! Blindfolded and bundled up (there is no heat in the studio!) we all gave 2016 a good whack.  Pinatas filled with money, candy and souvenirs spilled out as we swung for the fences!  Watching everyone exorcise some stress provided endless entertainment into the wee hours of the night.


12:30 AM Back in the main house, Madonna trumped Bing Crosby and a late night dance party sprang up in the main hallway.  At LMD we work hard and play hard and my children were not nestled all snug in their beds, they were too busy Vogueing the night away.  And that’s the way we like it…