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Lily Love To The Rescue

My love of flowers runs deep. The happiness they bring to me is immeasurable. This last stay at Hawthorne is testimony to that fact. The eve we arrived a good sized snow arrived and we did not leave the house the next day. Which on almost all levels is heaven to me. Only thing missing were some blooms set about which we would normally pick up shopping our first full day there. I can honestly say I felt a tad off kilter that first day. Once we got out and did a little grocery shopping and picked up a bundle of lilies, all was right in my world. I know for some of you reading that might sound/seem extreme, but I really did breath easier once they dotted about the rooms. Flowers settle me. They make a space come alive. Others of you reading completely know what I am talking about. I am not meaning anything excessive or overly extravagant, just a few blooms that make the rooms full of life. Moments after arriving back in Seattle the other evening to the apartment, I walked straight to Whole Foods to pick up a bundle of tulips for the very same reason. The rooms woke up once the single stems were set here and there and all was right. The world may be chaotic outside, but home can envelop us. With a few flowers it certainly does for me. Happy week-end all! Much love, TKW



 

 

A Glass Bottle Collection

A collection can really be of something quite basic, super utilitarian but ultimately should be something that pleases you on many levels. At Hawthorne we started collecting old, heavy glass bottles & jars that have writing on them. We use them for single stem vases but when not called in to duty to hold a flower, they look swell massed together to enjoy visually as the collection in the dining room. We find them when out and about looking for vintage for the shops. I try and never spend more than $20 for one. These little beauties can be super spendy as they are quite old and certain ones become quite collectible. We pass on those and revel in the beauty of more basic versions. For it is a collection that is meant to be used, so if one breaks we are not all torn up by it. For it is a ‘working’ collection. To be admired when not in action but they really come to life when a bloom makes the little vessels just sing.



 

 

Kale In The Country & The Beach

This Flower Friday is not about blooms but a big bunch of kale filling in for the centerpiece of the table. Both at Hawthorne and WestWard, the produce aisle at the grocery store or a quick stop at a roadside farm stand can reap big benefits when it comes to beautiful bundles of greens or herbs. Often times the grocery store flower section will be slim pickings, so I go to plan B. Kale is usually the winner as I love how full and ruffly and rich the greens are–perfect for a showstopper in the middle of the table.



 

 

Lunch at The Maker Cafe in Hudson

The Maker, a new hotel, cafe & lounge on Warren Street in Hudson is not to be missed. Created by the talented folks behind Bartlett House in Ghent, no detail is too small to go unnoticed. From the food to the vibe to the furnishings, all done with great care. We had lunch there yesterday afternoon. The cafe and lounge are now open, the hotel portion slated to open this Summer. Being in the business of details, I am hyper aware of them when we are out and about when we shop/dine/meander. Sometimes the music is overly loud or nonexistent, the lighting not just right, or the staff aloof or unwelcoming. When I am in a place that gets it right, I let it wash over me like a welcome hug. Getting ALL the details right is a ton of work, while making it seem effortless is an art. The Maker has this down to a science, as does Bartlett House. I wrote long ago I would not write about a place we dined in a critical fashion. It is just not my style. There is enough criticism in our world. But when I/we like a place, we are all in. One of the most asked questions of me at the shops or in e-mails is where to dine, shop and stay. I am always happy to share the places we adore. For these establishments are labors of love–and to me, you feel that, you sense it, you taste it.



 

 

The View From Little Hawthorne

I snapped this photo from the driveway of Little Hawthorne this frigid and oh so glorious Hudson Valley morning after we were meeting with a contractor. The meaning of this trip is to get the wheels churning on all sorts of ideas swimming around our heads. We have a bunch of meetings set up with folks who specialize in all sorts of creative endeavors, be it farming to building. It is also a stay to have this all really sink in. We finalized and bought this house and land while we were in Seattle, so it did not really feel real until we were here and inside the house and walking the land. This is a much different story than almost six years ago when we bought Hawthorne–the house had been meticulously restored. Little Hawthorne is a project just waiting for us to make up our minds on a host of ideas and then switch the ‘on’ button. We are making sure to go about this methodically and to savor the process. It is so easy to jump into things and not be fully present along the way. We want to enjoy the heck out of this journey. The next chapter begins…



 

 

Fun News to Begin the New Year

You all have been such a lovely part of our Hawthorne story, from the very beginning. Yesterday a new chapter begins. Our 1920 farmhouse was originally part of a farm way back when. The neighbor next door actually grew up in our house, then living in the house next door to us. We got to know her and her husband and were quite fond of them. In the last few years, they both passed. Hawthorne was on a small parcel of land right in the middle of what was the original farm. Our fun news is we bought the rest of the land (10 acres, along with our 1, making it a magic 11, a number you know near & dear to my heart) along with their house. We are pretty over the moon and dreaming of all the possibilities. I am daydreaming flower farm, while Mister Sive an orchard. The above photo, which I shot for Pottery Barn a few years back, you can see the outline of the fence, next to the pond. Oh yes, we now have a glorious pond! We are dubbing the new house, Little Hawthorne. Built in the 50’s, it is as solid as a rock and we are psyched about fixing it up. It will be a charming guest house, as well as be part of the Airbnb family when we are not there. Cheers to the next chapter of Hawthorne! Thanks for following along. X, T2+B



 

 

The Simple Things

Simple tasks and simple pleasures are what I am clinging to as the fog that seems to have entered my being has begun to lift a bit each day. I almost feel I am in a dreamlike state, like “What just happened?” Things such as washing dishes by hand or roasting a chicken become an aspect of the therapy. Death is part of life which I think is healthy to talk about and share. So often it feels like a taboo topic, when in reality it is something we all face, be it friends or family. We are so fortunate to have a large circle of friends over the years, as well as large extended families. Along the way we have had to deal with members of these cherished groups dying. Some young, some old. You learn to process it, talk about it, absorb it. It is never easy, but each day the journey becomes a tad easier. I can’t thank you all enough for the kinds words sent, the lovely thoughts & prayers given. X, T



 

 

A Boxing Day Table For 14

Our new tradition of flying to Hawthorne on Christmas Day also includes hosting a Boxing Day supper the next day. This year it was a family affair with folks coming from Montclair, Albany and Troy. Simple potted paperwhites would be the centerpiece of the table. When we bought the metal topped dining table when we first got the house, we actually bought 2. The legs fold so we keep the spare in the basement. It is quite nifty because it saddles up ever so nicely as a pair, giving us lots of extra seating to accommodate more guests. We used 2 fern laden matching tablecloths so the tables became a cohesive whole. Then it was a smattering of glassybaby vessels along with the pair of jaunty green Dunes & Duchess candelabras and we were off and running. Citrus with thyme salmon, cauliflower and broccoli purée, along with Parmesan smashed Yukon gold potatoes was the meal. Tons of chatting, lots of laughs, deep discussions and a good deal of wine. A pretty swell evening to kick-off our stay.



 

 

A Hudson Valley Arrival

We traveled through Christmas Day, arriving to Hawthorne a bit after 8 last night. The temperature dropping as we meandered North up to Columbia County, hitting 32 as we drove up the long driveway. Caretaker Bill had once again beautifully prepared the house for us, getting the perfect tree and having it lit so we could see it the moment we drove in. Then our Twelve Days of Christmas began! We are hosting a Boxing Day supper for family today, a new tradition. So it is up and at em’ early getting things ready. Then tons of R&R is on the menu for this stay. The retail marathon a big success (huge THANKS to all who shopped WK this season) but each passing year my 55 year old body takes a tad longer to re-coup. I hope your Holidays have been and continue to be divine and all you wished they would be.

From the Hawthorne Valley, sending much love, Ted2+Bailey



 

 

Hudson-Chatham Blanc de Blanc

Wine Wednesday is a super tasty sparking wine from our hood in Ghent, the Hudson-Chatham Winery. They make a Blanc de Blanc for about 20 bucks a bottle that will knock your socks off. We enjoyed it the other eve as we kicked-off our annual Sive niece supper/sleepover. All grown ups now, with several working in the culinary industry, they make us the meal and we supply the appetizers and drinks. I thought this would be a festive way to get the festivities started. With a nod towards the sweet, it was lovely serving it with cheese as it really stands up and compliments food. Would also be stellar served with dessert or chocolates. Of course the fab orange label grabbed my attention right off the bat, but this versatile bubbly will be on my list each Hawthorne stay.