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Holy Hermès!


Saturday was a glorious day in Paris. Not only was it a beautiful fall day but it was also the weekend of the vintage Hermès exhibit in Paris. And boy, it did not disappoint. Luckily the exhibit was across the street from my apartment at the Hotel du Louvre so we did not have to travel far. Let me just state for the record that walking through the Palais Royal garden on a brisk autumn morning in Paris to get to a Hermès exhibit with my handsome husband doesn’t suck. I recognize that I am fortunate that this is how I am able to spend a Saturday.

The second I stepped into the exhibit, my heart started beating with excitement. Vintage Hermès everything… Travel luggage, toiletry kits, bags, scarves, accessories, clothing… Everything one’s greedy little heart could imagine. The ladies of the 16th arrondissement came out of the woodwork for this event. It was truly a sight to see. I love a hoity-toity old-school Parisian. They are usually impenetrable but I think because they recognize my plight, somehow their guard is down and they always give me a sweet knowing look. Real Housewives these ladies were not. Demure, subtle, impeccably dressed, perfect lipstick, chic hairdos, sunglasses with husbands, little dogs and euros in tow. Every single woman looked like Catherine Deneuve (current age) and these women were there to shop. There was not a single tourist in sight. There were no bimbos in Hervé Léger bandage dresses asking, “Do you have any new pink Birkins because all of these bags just look so oooooold.”

What surprised me most about the exhibit was the rarity of the items. There was a circa 1969 St. Tropez bag, manufactured for only one year, only 10 in existence. And the colors! Shamrock green suede gloves. Navy blue leather bags. Ox blood red leather travel bags. Sapphire blue crocodile bracelets. And my favorite, a 1958 pearl gray/blue Kelly bag. Unusual bags like the canvas hand-painted sailboat travel bag from a private collection. The collection of vintage scarves was cray cray… Pink and green cashmere, navy blue silks and one very very special scarf with a mink border. Take a look…


These pieces were for the true connoisseurs, collectors and lovers of everything Hermès… But in a good way.

*I have to give a special thank you to my husband. For the past 10 years, he has taken me to every exhibit, museum, Château, garden, fleamarket and antique show that my little heart desires. He will wake up at 5 AM, drive 100 miles and grab the lattes to ensure that my happiness is paramount. It was easy in the beginning without ALS. We could just wake up, pop into the car and do as we please. Now, with my ALS, it’s a bit more complicated. Caregivers, wheelchairs, breathing machines, my attitude… It’s not always easy but he still does it because he knows it makes me happy. ALS is a very complicated disease both emotionally and physically. Even friends and family don’t understand what David and I go through on a daily basis. It is a challenge and the ultimate test of a relationship. It’s not always pretty but sometimes it’s beautiful. Je t’aime, Saint David.

A Rolling Stone Gathers No Moss

Remember when I told you I had a big secret that I didn’t want to jinx before it was finalized. Well, today it was finalized. Are you ready?

We Are Moving To Provence!!!

Can you even believe it? I have been working on this for over a year. My love of Provence is well documented in previous blogs. Click HERE to read. I have been looking, researching and wishing. I have probably looked at 4 billion houses but none of them worked out until…

Until my friend Heather from Lost in Arles blog sent me a listing of a house smack dab in the middle of Provence. It was perfect, reminded me of Santa Barbara, a great price with a pool. We made an offer immediately but unfortunately a local family also wanted the house, so they won. I was devastated and was ready to pitch the biggest crybaby fit, but for some reason I stayed calm. The real estate agency informed us that there was another house that was going to be available. She sent us the photos and by picture number 2, we were all in. This house was even better. Luckily, the owners accepted our offer and we signed the lease this morning.

We move on Sunday. Au revoir, Paris. Provence, here I come.

 My new slice of heaven.

Now because if you read my blog you know I like to talk houses and I assume you do as well. This house is called a mas, a farmhouse. It is all stone with big French blue shutters. There is a big terrace, a pool and views of the Alpilles Mountains (whatever those are). Just what this sick girl needs. Remember, Vincent van Gogh went to Provence to “recover” so I will be in good company. Paris is lovely but I need to be in nature. I need to see trees, hear birds, feel the sunshine and smell the lavender… And adopt a big fat dog. I need to connect to the earth. That and a few green juices should keep me alive.


Chez Decret
I also thought it would be fun if we (my blog readers and I)  all had a new adventure, new surroundings. I am looking forward to discovering every inch of Provence from the restaurants, the farmers markets, the flea markets, the churches, the countryside and the people. Speaking of people, I am interviewing for my new Provence friends. You can pick up an application at any café. Qualifications must include a sense of humor and three references. That’s it. However, if you are a super crabby old school Provençal farmer with an olive grove and chickens, please apply because I like you already. Seriously though, email me if you want a new friend. I am really friendly, my husband is not and neither is my daughter but that’s okay because I have enough personality for both of them. I will invite you to barbecues, movie nights and pool parties.

How did I do all of this? How did I manage to get myself to Provence? I’ll tell you the truth… My sweet friend Ally Hilfiger told me that I should make a mood board and that I should manifest my destiny. I did just that. I cut out and glued pictures of Provence directly across from my bed so that I could see it every day. Provence was never out of my sight. Guess what? It worked. I never gave up hope. It wasn’t easy to convince my husband. He works in Paris, we have a beautiful apartment and Provence was for vacation, not real life. Finally, bit by bit, he started to see the light. He knew it was best for me. Paris is no place for a sick girl. He knew that I needed to get back to the sunshine.

So here we are, our apartment is all packed, my caregivers are ready for the move, Gracie will stay in Paris to finish school and we leave on Sunday. Relax, Grace will be fine. I have hovered enough. Time to slow down and enjoy life. Sorry Paris, no hard feelings.

Are you guys ready for our new adventure!!!

Oh My, Chinoiserie Halloween Pumpkins!

Wow. Just wow. The bravery and courage that all of you explained is quite heartwarming. We all have our own path, history and story and I am so impressed by all of your honesty and openness. Thank you. Thank you for sharing your stories because your stories create new stories. Your bravery creates new bravery. Sometimes all it takes is thinking to oneself, “If they did it, I can do it.” I cried through every comment, didn’t you?

Okay, let’s all take it collective deep breath, pat ourselves on the back and march forward. Today is a new day so let’s make it pretty, shall we?

I have just the thing to cheer us up… Chinoiserie Pumpkins! Take a look…


Some of these pumpkins are available on a website called Indigo Home but if it’s too late to order how about giving it a whirl for yourself. Just make a template and go for it. You can do it. If you can endure and surpass a bad marriage, abusive relationship, homophobia, disastrous finances and shitty friends, making a Chinoiserie pumpkin ought to be a walk in the park! Love you guys.
For more inspiring Halloween pumpkins of all sorts, follow my Have Some Decorum Halloween Pumpkins on my Pinterest Board HERE!

Bon Courage

French people mostly annoy me. It’s no secret. Except my French friends, they don’t annoy me but the rest of the population of French people do. Usually it’s the pessimism that I can’t handle. I come from the land of “anything is possible” and it is hard to adapt to my new home of “everything is impossible.” It’s also the everyday nuances of the French, mostly Parisians. I am not bashing Paris, I’m explaining Paris. Whenever I hear Parisians say, “c’est top, genial, le shopping, le jogging, le concept“, or the worst, “putain” (which I hear about 4000 times a day), I just wince. Don’t get me wrong, Americans annoy me also. It’s no secret. Except my American friends, they don’t annoy me. I am non-discriminatory in my annoyance. I am not bashing America, I’m explaining America. Whenever I hear Americans say, “God Bless America, gun rights, build a border, defund Planned Parenthood“, I just wince. Americans usually make up for their ignorance with their brilliance. One word: Instagram.

The French, however, make up for their annoying traits in a big way. A very big way.

Over the past two years, I have met all sorts of French people. Doctors, chefs, homeless people, nuns, paramedics, taxi drivers, fleamarket vendors, French Muslims, shopkeepers, restaurant owners, rich French, poor French, funny French, rude French, florist, hairdressers… You name it, I have met them. And no matter who they are or what they do, they say one thing to me. And that one thing melts my heart every time. It redeems them for everything. And there is nothing equivalent in America.

What is this thing that they say to me? It is something so gentle, so profound, so thoughtful, so wise, so historic, so encompassing that I feel like the French really have a soul like no one else.

The first time I heard it I was at Notre Dame Church. There was a nun dressed in a gray habit smiling at me as I was about to leave. I asked her if I could have a picture with her because she was so freaking adorable. After we took our picture, she placed her hands on top of my hands and said two words. These two magical words: “Bon Courage.” It basically means to wish someone well but when people say it to me it literally means, “Have Courage.” In all my life, I have never heard anything as wonderful as that. I just think it’s such a noble thing to say, “Bon Courage.” Those two words mean so much. Courage is everything for me, and without it, I will crumble.

I started to think this week about what courage really is. It’s different than being daring. Daring has a sense of adventure to it. Courage is doing something that scares you that does not necessarily have a fun side effect. I am not daring but I am courageous. I have not always been courageous by choice but by force and necessity. Do I want to be courageous? Nope. I want to hide under a rock, mostly. However, I don’t have that choice. Having ALS, this disease forces you to be courageous. Not necessarily for yourself but for the people around you. I have to be courageous for my daughter. (I don’t have to be courageous for my husband because he has enough courage for both of us.)

I asked myself yesterday what is the most courageous thing I have ever done. For me, I think the most courageous thing that I have ever done is to face the reality of ALS. From day 2 after being diagnosed with ALS, 90% of the time I just march forward. Day 1 of being diagnosed with ALS was just a fucking blur but I pulled myself together by the second day. Not to toot my own horn, but I really did. I didn’t do it for me. I did it for Grace and it’s the best decision I’ve ever made. Did I want to go to the hospital to have a pacer inserted into my diaphragm so I could breathe better? Did I want my lungs to collapse like they did that day? Did I want to be in pain for eight weeks and become nearly addicted to oxycodone? Obviously not, but I did it anyway. I put my fear behind me and courageously went into that operating room… For Grace. It’s easy to be courageous for the love of your life.

This is me two weeks after my surgery waiting to go into the doctor's office for a post-op check-up. I am completely jacked-up on oxycodone and yet still in excruciating pain. Didn't think that I could go on...but I did.
 This little Italian Greyhound that I named Ines was my consolation prize. She got me through those tough eight weeks.

So whenever I hear the words, “Bon Courage”, it really touches me. My usual answer is, “Merci, je l’aurai.”

So now, it’s your turn. What is the most courageous thing you’ve ever done? Did you leave a bad marriage? Did you start your own business and leave a comfortable job? Did you go to AA? Did you raise a child on your own? Did you give a speech at the United Nations? Did you go outside of your comfort zone? What have you done to be courageous? And I’m talking about the absolute most courageous thing you have ever done. Not regular courage. It’s not bragging, it’s communicating, so tell me! Pat yourself on the back and expose yourself. Bon Courage!

Once Upon A Pillow

Very exciting news today. My friend Rebecca Vizard has written a fabulous book called Once Upon a Pillow and it is officially available today!

You may remember I did a blog about Rebecca and her drop dead gorgeous pillows. If you didn’t see it you can read it HERE.

Rebecca is a girl after my own heart. We both love pillows, tapestries, antique fabric and trim but she is the foremost expert on all of it. Her company, B.Viz Design, is based out of Louisiana which creates the pillows that top interior designers covet and her pillows have graced the covers of national publications such as House Beautiful, Veranda, Elle Decor, Traditional Home and Architectural Digest. Look look look…

Rebecca scours the globe sourcing her textiles and the result is nothing less than fabulous. What I love most about her pillows is that there is a subtle chicness. She chooses just the right blues, just the right oranges, just the right beiges and knows exactly the perfect embellishments. When Rebecca visited me in Paris, she brought me a very special gift. Take a look…

This particular pillow could not have been more perfect for me. That heart with the sunburst with the sword and the perfect silvery beige velvet! Every time someone walks into my apartment the first thing they ask is, “Where did you get that gorgeous pillow!” Pillows are always the icing on the cake, no, make that the cherry on top of the icing on the cake. I like to keep things neutral and then pop with a pillow and Rebecca’s pillows are just perfect for that.

According to the press release, “Once Upon a Pillow features a study collection of pillows all designed by Rebecca. Celebrated for her innovative use of rare antique textiles— from the embroidered metallic threads or ecclesiastical vestments to Venetian Fortuny and Central Asian suzanis-her designs present a perfect balance of art and material culture.”

A perfect gift for yourself and perfect gift to give for Christmas! Sweet, generous Rebecca has donated a pillow that will be available for the December Have Some Decorum Home sale and 100% of the proceeds will go to ALS research in honor of Rebecca’s friend who has ALS, like me. ALS is apparently the “It” disease of the moment. :-)

To purchase Once Upon a Pillow, click HERE.
To purchase Rebecca’s pillows, click HERE.

Rebecca is having a few book signings coming up. Check out the dates on her website. If you go and see Rebecca give her a huge hug for me!

*Something you don’t know about me? I still have a huge surprise to share with all of you but I have to wait until it’s a done deal so I don’t jinx it. Trust me, I’m bursting at the seams to tell all of you. It’s killing me, killing me not to be able to tell you guys. But soon, soon soon soon.

“You might be pretty but this is my city.” Ladies of London

*If you haven’t watched Ladies of London, do so now so we can discuss. Start with Season One and come back when you are up to date with Season Two.

It is a well-known fact that I’m completely obsessed with reality TV. I can barely watch regular TV and I think I could literally host a television show about anything on the Bravo network so if Andy Cohen ever gets the stomach flu, I could be his substitute at a moment’s notice. It’s sad and magnificent at the same time. My friends and I have full in-depth conversations about our favorite shows and then we feel like losers but we continue watching anyway. Hell, why not? It’s not like I don’t read books also! (Mostly cookbooks.) The good news is that the only American station I have in Paris is CNN so I get my forced daily dose of current events so don’t worry. By the way, I am most likely going to make the effort to vote for Donald Trump from all the way overseas… Just for fun. What do I care, I live in France. It will be like a whole new reality show. I watch Hulu as well but Hulu has American commercials and watching ads for Totino’s pizza rolls and Jack-in-the-Box greasy tacos and jalapeño poppers is just making me homesick and sad so I have to limit my time on Hulu.

I am getting a bit weary with The Housewives. They’re not rich enough anymore and I’m getting bored. And no one has slapped anyone in a very long time. But don’t get me wrong, I still watch every episode and my daughter and I are currently binge watching the Real Housewives of New York starting with Season One. I scared myself the other day because I realized that Kelly Bensimon and I have similar personalities. #ScaryIsland.

So, when Ladies of London began Season Two I was as thrilled as all get go. Finally, some class. Ha ha ha, I’m laughing as I write that but we have to admit that it is a step up from Ramona’s Pinot Grigio, Vicki’s fake flowers, Tamra’s white trash gym, Teresa’s prison sentence, Nene thinking that she’s rich but still lives in a subdivision, Countess Lou Anne’s turquoise statement necklaces, Brandy’s rental houses and Kyle’s faux St. Tropez white parties in her backyard.

Ladies of London makes me want to live in London so badly. It’s all cozy, tea time, turtleneck sweaters and fireplaces. It makes me want to go to the Chelsea Flower Show, inherit a country house and hire Amanda Brooks “to do the yard.” And whoever wrote the Ladies of London theme song is genius.

I am even going to go out on a limb and say that I like Ladies of London better than all the Housewives combined. Even if the Ladies of London argue, at least there’s a slightly intelligent conversation behind it except when Jules cried about Caroline telling her that she didn’t do a headstand as fast as Caroline. And I don’t give a shit if she has hypersensitive whatever. For fucks sake, get a grip and learn how to make hot chocolate by the way. Your children will thank you.

You know how everyone resonates with certain characters. Like on Sex and the City, which character describes you best? Or are you a combination? I am a combination of Carrie and Charlotte. On Ladies of London, I think I’m a combination of Caroline, Caroline and Annabelle.

Caroline Stanbury. My favorite character. I call them characters because I don’t actually think that they are real. I used to think she’s fat but she’s not, she’s actually super skinny, it’s just that her head, lips and ego are so big and that’s exactly what I like about her. In my delusional fictional life, Caroline S. and I are besties except that I hate the decor of her house but don’t tell her I said that. And by the way, if she is so rich, why isn’t her sweet husband financially bailing out her company, Gift Library, that is about to tank? #JustAsking.

Caroline Stanbury
Caroline Fleming I love because she can decorate, cook, dress and doesn’t give two fucks about anything. She doesn’t have to because she is Danish royalty. I do like how she gives everyone very genuine and real hugs. My favorite thing about her so far was when she just talked right over her therapist during her session. We both have a common love of coconut oil but I only use it for cooking. And I absolutely adore the way she doesn’t answer her doorbell until about the fourth ring after she’s finished everything she was doing. And honestly, I have never seen better blonde hair in my entire life. #Jealous

Caroline Fleming
Marissa. Hate. Everything. About. Her. My entire body cringes when I hear her fake English accent. Except that I love that she probably writes handwritten thank you notes and probably has everything monogrammed. I do like her husband a lot. He seems sweet and supportive of her hotdog dreams. #IWouldBullyHerInAmerica

Juliet. Besides the fact that I cannot tell her apart from Jill Kargman, I can’t tell if I like her or not. No, I just made up my mind. I don’t like her. She’s a brown noser and I don’t think she truly expresses her real feelings because she’s afraid of Caroline S. I do, however, adore her little daughter Georgina. I wish they would just replace Juliet with her little girl as a main character. #AnnoyingAsFuck


Jules. This is the girl that I relate to the least. She literally has no balls even if she bakes balls. My friend LC described her best: “…About that, yoga girl cries (and JESUS what an ugly crier, stop already!) and everyone is appalled.  Would you cry if your husband was going to inherit Mapperton?  No.  I mean, we'd cry about the bills, but fuck that we'd be cajoling, stealing or whatever we had to do to get that Green Chinoiserie Bedroom back up to speed.  For fucks sake.” #TooSensitive

Annabelle. Love because first of all my grandmother’s name was Annabelle and secondly I like her because she’s cool. I imagine she and I would be friends and at a fancy party we would sneak away and smoke ciggies and talk about everyone we hate at the party. I would probably spend the night at her house sometimes because she probably has cozy English bedding. And I like her grandma. #PerfectBangs

Caroline Stanbury’s sister-in-law, Sophie. Might be my favorite person on earth. Quite clearly a functioning alcoholic, smoking cigs outside of restaurants in the freezing cold London weather, only wants to have fun and has drop dead hair with brilliant layers and phenomenal eyebrows. #WhatMoreDoYouWantOutOfAWoman

So those are my shallow thoughts of the day. Sorry and you’re welcome.

*Something you don’t know about me? It’s funny. In the summer of 2011, Yolanda and David Foster invited me to a hoity-toity party in the Hamptons. After I had just been introduced to former president Bill Clinton, I turned around and standing behind me was Kelly Bensimon waiting to be introduced to Mr. Clinton. All of a sudden I said, “Mr. Clinton, I would like you to meet my friend, Kelly.” Swear to God. I totally forgot that Kelly wasn’t my friend and that I only know her from the television! Isn’t that funny!