Archive for 2016

8/29/16, Sweet Visit

Posted on August 29, 2016

Hi Everyone,

I hope these last days of summer are nice for you, and that you’re still enjoying it.
Summer is definitely over for me, I’m back to work, working hard. I don’t know where the summer went, it went so fast, and now a few days this week and then Labor Day, and then it’s officially over. Boo Hoo!!! Just about everywhere, kids are going back to school this week, so that’s it. We’ll have to wait til next year for hot weather and summer vacations. It seems a long time away.

I had a really sweet week until I went back to work (although that’s sweet too!!). The 12 year old daughter of a very close friend in Paris came to visit me, and it was a real treat. She is the sweetest kid, and it was so much fun. With grown up children I forget just how easy and nice that age can be, everything is straightforward and simple, you know where you stand, communication is easy, in most cases, problems are small. Kids that age are happy to be with you, don’t have conflicting plans, and two hours in a swimming pool is super fun!! They are thrilled with everything at that age. And she is an exceptionally nice, well behaved child. I had a wonderful time with her, a little shopping, 2 movies, some swimming, bowling, buying new books, we visited the sea lions (too smelly), a manicure (bright orange!!) pasta dinners, pizza, we were supposed to go to a museum, but never did. Her big thrill was buying candy. And as I solemnly promised her parents, we did 2 hours of her remaining summer homework every day, and finished it!! And it’s a really brave thing to do, for a kid that age to visit a grown up, she must have been worried that she’d be bored, but it was an adventure for both of us, and a real gift to me!!! On the day she left, we both woke up sad that she was leaving, suddenly the easy fun was over, and it went too quickly. I took her to the plane, and waited until it took off, and before it did, she was sending me frantic text messages about how much she already missed me (I did too), and texts with hearts on them. I was really sad to see her leave (and started a new book that night). It was such a simple pleasure, so innocent and pure, and she’s such a sweet kid, it really was a wonderful visit. She starts school on Friday. It was a perfect end to my summer. (The one funny note was that she bought so much candy, for herself, her brother and sister, that I had to lend her an extra suitcase to take it home.)

And by the way, it was my Chihuahua Minnie’s birthday this week. I hope you remembered!!!

I hope the end of your summer is sweet too!!! Have a great last week of summer!!!

all my love, Danielle

8/23/16, Whirlwind

Posted on August 23, 2016

Hi Everyone,

I hope all is well with you, and that you’re enjoying these last days of summer. School starts for a lot of kids this week, and college shortly, so parents getting kids back to school are already racing, and so am I. My vacation a month ago seems like a distant memory from another lifetime!!

While making plans for this summer, other than my one week vacation with my children, in France, I had nothing special planned, so I said yes to a lot of things. And I no sooner did that, than the summer became full of surprises. One of my daughters got engaged three days before our vacation, to a man we all love, so we’re happy for her. And wedding plans got underway, for a small wedding, but even a small wedding has a million details and is a lot of work to organize—-as anyone can tell you who have planned one. I had a huge amount of writing work to do before our vacation, and after the vacation, I hit the ground running. I had houseguests two days after I got back from France, which was really fun, then a week to catch up on work, and then my kids came home for a week, for our second round of time together. The new fiancé came with them, and my week with them sped by, always much too quickly. I love it when they’re home, and the house is full again. And I’m always grateful when they spend time with me.

We celebrated my birthday while they were here, as I told you in last week’s blog. And three days after they left, I had a big photo shoot, for the photos on the back of my books. We did the photos for at least 10 book covers and possibly more, depending on which photos I love and seem right for the books. A big photo shoot like that is a big production, with a mountain of equipment that arrives, all very high tech, and a ‘studio’ they can set up anywhere with tall poles, and fabric in various colors, elaborate lights, computer equipment. It looks almost like a movie set. The photographer is a very famous French photographer, Brigitte Lacombe, who is incredibly talented, shoots mostly portraits, and works all over the world, although she is New York based. (She is the favorite photographer of Meryl Streep, and a number of very famous people—much more famous than I am!!) There is so much equipment and so much to do setting up lights and sets in various locations, that she brings three assistants with her. My assistant was really busy with the shoot too. A hairdresser, a make up artist, and suddenly there are people running around everywhere. We took photos for two very full days, starting with hair and make up at 7 am, and we start shooting at 9 am, and shoot til 6 or 7 pm at night, with a brief break for lunch. It sounds silly, but it’s actually hard work even for the subjects of a shoot like that. You have to concentrate, look alert, stay focused, be responsive, and keep moving at different angles, stand or sit up straight and pay attention, and follow directions. I changed clothes about 10 times a day, and had chosen the outfits before. I was really tired of changing clothes by the end of every day. And after we shot all day, I caught up on my work every night. And I learned a great new trick if your eyes are tired or puffy. The make up artist put two spoons in a bowl of ice til they were very cold, and placed one over each of my eyes…..and presto magic, your eyes aren’t puffy anymore!! I’m going to try that again, in real life!! I hope we got some great shots out of it, in two days of shooting intensely. I always love Brigitte’s photographs, she captures the soul of her subjects. She is a lovely woman, gentle, talented, super intelligent, and it’s a pleasure to spend 2 days with her, despite the work we have to do.

An hour before the last crew member left my house, 3 days after we started, the 12 year old daughter of my best friend arrived to spend a week with me, and that was great fun!! It’s fun to have a twelve year old in the house, her perspective, her points of view, her innocence, everything is easy at that age, and we got busy the minute she arrived. Some shopping, a manicure with my youngest daughter, —it’s all girly stuff with a 12 year old. The next day we went to one of the tourist spots in SF, saw the sea lions and bought a LOT of candy, and souvenirs for her to take back to Paris. We made dinner at home (delicious pasta with pesto), and watched a movie “The Parent Trap” with Lindsay Lohan when she was about 12, it’s a really cute movie. Yesterday, I had to work, and then we went to a mall, ran some errands, and we’ve done homework every day, so she’ll be ready for school, and she went swimming last night. We plan to go to a museum, do more homework, and maybe out to a movie. And the day she leaves, I have to go back to writing.

And when I wasn’t racing around with a 12 year old, or getting my picture taken for book covers, I was working on planning the wedding for my daughter, which will happen in 8 weeks in New York, and there are a million details to take care of (flowers, music, location, ceremony, reception, dinner, and all the component parts of a wedding, even a small one.
So it has turned out to be a crazy busy summer after all. I thought I’d have nothing to do this summer!! Whew!!! It was the busiest summer I’ve had in a long time. I’ll be travelling again soon, celebrating one daughter’s birthday, and writing wherever I go!!!

I can’t say it was a restful summer, but some of it has really been a lot of fun, especially spending time with my children, the houseguests I had, and I’m excited about the writing I’m doing, and the books I’ll be writing in the coming months.

And a week from now (a week from today—on August 30th), I have a new hardcover book coming out, “Rushing Waters”, about what happens when a monster hurricane hits New York, and how it affects people and their lives. It was an exciting book to write!!!

I hope your summer was a little less hectic and more restful than mine. And with luck, I hope you even have a little vacation left before we race into Fall. Take good care, and have a great week,

love, Danielle

8/16/16, Happy Day

Posted on August 16, 2016

Hi Everyone,

I’ve had a busy week as the last of the summer flies by. My birthday was last weekend, a day that I’ve disliked (and sometimes hated) all my life. Mid-summer birthdays aren’t much fun for a child, when everyone is away, and I can only remember celebrating my birthday once as a child. So by the time I grew up, I had decided that birthdays were definitely not fun. But my children, and their father have worked hard to turn that around. (I am the original birthday Grinch, although I LOVE Christmas!!!). I usually growl a lot beforehand, say I don’t want to celebrate it, and adding years never seemed like fun to me. When I was married to my children’s father, he gave me some wonderful birthday parties, and my children go all out to make the day fun. We usually go away together for a long weekend, and enjoy the time together. They spoil me with presents (used to make me macaroni necklaces, and decorated tissue boxes, and I loved all of it, and still have it all). And now, they really give me incredibly thoughtful gifts, funny things, and serious ones, a piece of jewelry, and fun shoes and pretty sweaters, books, framed photographs and fun pieces of art, and there are always things that make me laugh—my fetish for sayings and words!!!

We had four days together in the Napa Valley, everyone hung out in the pool in hundred degree weather, we ate at home, a Mexican lunch, a barbecue one night, an Italian dinner, a big brunch. I love being with them, and spending the whole day with them, which is the best gift of all. And this year was especially nice. We all relaxed, played Scrabble, and told funny stories and teased each other as big families do. Every year, I am convinced that THIS was the best birthday of all. I was with 6 of my children, (2 of them were away), the very best friend of one of my sons who is very special to all of us and dear to me, and one of my daughter’s fiancé. Meals were noisy and fun, we danced in the kitchen one night. And they are definitely making a convert of me year by year. They had a cake again this year that was a work of art, and an exact replica of my Chihuahuas, and I wouldn’t let anyone eat it, again!!! (I didn’t last year either, the cake was too beautiful to cut into!!) So we had a second cake for everyone to enjoy. The day and the weekend couldn’t have been more wonderful, more thoughtful, generous, or loving….I had a great birthday, thanks to them, and all the thoughtful things they did to make it fun for me!!!

For me, the summer is pretty much over after my birthday. By the next day, I’m back at my desk, working, getting ready for the fall. I won’t see my kids all together again for a while. So work will keep me busy. And the birthday I just had will make me smile whenever I think of it, for a long, long time to come!!! Have a great week!!!

love, Danielle

8/8/16, Roll of the dice.

Posted on August 8, 2016

 Hi Everyone,

I hope things are rolling along smoothly. I’ve had some busy weeks, and have been flying around a lot, which gets more and more complicated with increased security in airports, which is a good thing. This month has been about friends for me. I had house guests last week, who came to visit their son in his summer job far from home. It was special and wonderful having friends I particularly love stay with me. It gave us time to talk, share meals, and just hang out, which doesn’t happen often in busy lives. It was a really lovely, warm, cozy time.

And I had a very special evening last week. As I mentioned to you exactly two months ago, my ex husband Tom Perkins, with whom I stayed very close even after our marriage, passed away in June. Sadly, his memorial happened in San Francisco on the day that my five youngest children arrived in France, for our annual vacation. They all have demanding jobs and lives, and had asked for their time off 7 months before, so we couldn’t postpone our vacation, and I couldn’t come back from France for the memorial. So I arranged for a very special night when I got home. During our marriage, long before, and long after, Tom had a very special group of friends, who were his closest friends and wonderful to me. They’ve all been Tom’s closest friends for more than 60 years. They welcomed me into their midst with open arms and loving hearts when Tom and I married, we have stayed close as well, and I nicknamed them The Big Six, 3 absolutely wonderful couples, who were like Godparents to me. And added to them eventually was the daughter of one couple and her husband. They were Tom’s closest friends, we saw each other frequently, and spent vacations togetDS.TP.1her. And one of Tom’s favorite past times was playing Liar’s Dice, a form of poker, using dice. We had some really great times together, and some fun rowdy evenings with lots of laughs playing dice. Tom loved to win, was a great player, and took great pleasure beating us. But we gave him a run for his money too. He didn’t like playing for money, but we did anyway, for small stakes. On a big night, we could win $20.00, or lose $10. You would think we had won the lottery at the screams of glee and delight when one of us won $5.00. We set up regular dice nights with pizza dinners, and lots of snacks while we played (Cheetos, Fritos, chips, pretzels, chocolates, and one very fancy night, corn dogs as well as pizza).

So one night last week, we gathered at my home for our dice night. It was bittersweet without Tom to growl when he lost to one of us, but the evening was mostly sweet, in memory of our Fearless Leader. We talked about him, reminisced about our trips together, told funny Tom stories, and shared a warm and very special evening. I had gathered up photos of Tom and set them on the table with little vases of red roses. The photos brought back so many memories, of our trips, our wedding, our great times with him. We all cried looking at the photos, and laughed at the stories we remembered. It was a perfect way to remember him. And I gave everyone a dice cup with one of Tom’s favorite sayings on it. It was such a lovely evening, and such a nice way to share our memories of him. It was a wonderful reminder too of how precious good friends are, and how important they are in our lives, to share happy and sad moments. We all left each other at the end of the evening, grateful to be together and for our friendship, with Tom’s presence so firmly in our hearts forever. He will never be far from us.  And I won $10.00 !!!!



Have a great week. I hope you do something fun this week, and even get to spend time with a good friend. There is nothing better!!!  (Except maybe one’s kids. But good friends are so important for our well being).

all my love, Danielle

8/1/16, Puppy Love

Posted on August 1, 2016

Hi Everyone,

At midpoint in the summer, I hope it is turning out the way you want it to. Mine has been a little up and down, with some sad moments (when my ex husband died in June), and some happy ones (a week’s vacation with my kids), real life is what it is, always a mix of good and bad, with hopefully more good in the mix. But on the whole, it’s been a good summer so far, although I’ve done a huge amount of work and have only taken a week off so far. But my kids are busy now, so I limit my vacations to time with them.

We made it through the shock and sadness of another terrorist attack, in Nice. France is badly shaken by the attacks, the high toll it has taken, and the sorrow it causes, and touches so many. And the unpredictability and brutality of the attacks. The most recent one being only last week, the murder of an 86 year old priest outside Paris. This is a sad time for France, with no easy solutions at hand. I left Paris the day after the last attack, and on the first day of a major airline strike in France. I didnt think our flight would get out, but it did after a three and a half hour delay, more than half the crew didnt show up, so they had to cancel passengers, and they only provided limited food for the remaining passengers on an eight hour flight. The joys of modern travel. The whole trip took 15 hours, and was exhausting. But I’m back on American turf, and looking forward to seeing my kids again for a long weekend in two weeks. And in the meantime, I’ll be working.

BUT….I am up to mischief, or thinking about it. Uh oh. Never trust a woman with 9 children (who also loves dogs!!) I’ve been flirting with the idea of getting another puppy for the last six months. It’s working wonderfully with the two tiny teacup Chihuahuas I have, Minnie and Blue. Minnie is the love of my life, a total princess who loves to ride around cradled in one arm, she even sleeps there, her long fluffy white hair draped around her. Her sidekick is ‘Baby Blue”, a total juvenile delinquent, charcoal blue gray with a mischievous little face, she gets into everything. On good days and bad, they bring me unlimited joy. I travel a lot, to my home in Paris, to three cities in the US to see my kids, I live in a suitcase, and the two dogs come along in their travel bags, which was why I got such small dogs. I have four older, bigger dogs in California, who are good companions, but too large and too old to travel. And I have travelling with Minnie and Blue down to a science, I put on their (shocking pink) sweaters, they hop into their travel bags, and off we go. Simple, right? So why mess with success? They sleep the whole way on a flight and never make a peep, and have toys, blankets and food in their bags. But lately, I’ve been longing to add a third one to the group. I wasn’t sure I could, but with such small dogs, the airline would allow it, and I am sooooo tempted. Puppy fever. Like with babies, you forget what a pain in the neck it will be when they’re puppies, and only think of the joys of a puppy. I just found out that the airline would allow it, and now I am wrestling with the idea. On the plus side, with grown kids, living alone, they are such good company. But Minnie would be mad at me for a while, I think Blue would enjoy a mischievous partner in crime. A puppy would be a lot of work, but I am so tempted…..I just helped a friend get an adorable rescue Chihuahua who is sooooo cute……If sanity prevails, I’ll keep it to the two I have, but I don’t know…..I have a feeling I may not be able to resist if the right puppy crosses my path. It has to be love at first sight, and was with these two….Stay tuned. Am I crazy or just love dogs, and need a shot of joy in my life? Don’t answer that question!! Probably crazy to want another dog. My kids all say no, don’t be ridiculous. But ridiculous has a certain appeal to it, and they say no when I want to buy a new fun purse too, so what the hell. And a new puppy is nothing compared to some of the things they do….so we’ll see…..I’m thinking about it.

In the meantime, I hope the world stays peaceful for a few weeks, and no new earth shattering events occur. I hope you continue to have a great summer, and get some time off to relax and have fun. 

And as always, I send you much love, Danielle

P.S. My great niece whom I told you about, who was so severely injured in the airport attack in Brussels 4 months ago, was an avid rider before the attack (and will be again!!). She’s still in the hospital, and they brought her horse to visit her a few weeks ago, they got her up on the horse for a few minutes, holding her, and she was beaming. She still has a way to go, but she is going to enter the Paralympics when she’s better. She is an amazing, AMAZING young woman!!! An inspiration to us all!!!! I cried when I saw the pictures of her, beaming on her horse. That’s really good news and I wanted to share it with you!!!

love, D.

7/25/16, The heart of summer

Posted on July 25, 2016

Hi Everyone,

I hope the summer is rolling out well, and you’re having fun, taking some time off, and enjoying family and friends. Hot weather, good times, maybe some swimming and sunning, fishing, whatever seems like fun to you. I love reading in the summer, when I take time off from writing for a few weeks.

I’ve just had my annual one week vacation with my 5 younger kids (the older 3 are married and have their own plans, the younger 5 are single and still join me for their vacations. And I’m well aware that I’m very lucky that they do, it’s generous of them to give up vacation time to be with me!!), and the time is always infinitely precious to me. For a brief week, I get to wake up every morning and know I will see them, we can have breakfast together, lunch, and dinner, laugh at old stories, share what’s going on, we can slouch around, be lazy, sleep in the sun, share gossip, or hopes and dreams, or admit to disappointments or mistakes, and for that one week, we have the luxury of time, we don’t need to rush or go anywhere, we just hang out. It’s especially precious to me, and reminds me of when they were younger and were at home. Precious days, which fly by too fast. While we’re busy driving car pool, doing school pick ups, and mountains of laundry, getting them to soccer practice, the orthodontist, or ballet class, we don’t realize how fast it will go, and be precious memories one day. I cherish each moment that they’re around. And then suddenly, the week is over and they’re gone, back to their busy lives, and I go back to the typewriter, to fill the silence in the house. I don’t think our kids ever realize how much we miss them when they’re not around. And living in separate cities now, makes the time together that much more meaningful, since we can’t just drop in on each other, or go to the hardware store or a movie together. We plan it months ahead. I’ll get a second round later this summer, and get to spend a long weekend together for my birthday, but the annual summer vacation together is very sweet and a real gift for me.

We spent our week together in France, and there is no denying that it is very tense there now after another recent attack. My kids were even more aware of it than I am, since I live here and am getting used to the changes we live with now. It was sobering to be at the airport, with soldiers every 3 or 4 feet, each one holding a machine gun with their finger on the trigger, ready to shoot into the crowd at the first sign of an attack, their captains watchful, each one holding a pistol, also at the ready. The ease of the most recent attack, with a rented truck used as a weapon to drive into a crowd and ruin more than 300 lives, has made people nervous and wary. We stayed at our hotel, didn’t wander around nearby towns as we always do, and we always go to a nightclub and go dancing once during the trip, and we didn’t this year. It just didn’t seem smart in the circumstances. The country will recover, but for now people are justifiably worried and frightened. For us, and for me, it’s home for part of the year, so it made sense to be here, but I worried about my kids flying in and out, and they were brave to come, and concerned.

But in spite of that, they swam, and we lay in the sun, we ate too much, laughed and kidded each other, played Scrabble and cards, ate dinner late and talked for many hours, and shared news about our lives, and of course I always give unwanted advice, and forget at times that they’re not kids anymore, a failing that most parents are guilty of. We’re a big family so there’s always a lot to talk about.

Now it’s back to work for me, and for them. But even a week together puts new life into all of us, and brings us closer, and reminds us of how much we enjoy each other……the house is much too quiet today……I’d better get back to work and start typing again!!

Take good care, have some fun….we all need it, and you deserve it!!!

much love, Danielle

7/18/16, River of tears.

Posted on July 15, 2016

Hi Everyone,

 I hope that all is well and peaceful in your world, and that you’re getting some time off this summer to just relax, recharge your batteries, and do the things you want to do. I’ve continued working hard this month, so that I could take a break and enjoy a vacation with my kids.

I  was thinking about what to write to you, without boring you with the more mundane parts of my life, or not wanting to talk too much about fashion, or should I tell you I’m working on a new book…..tell you how happy I am to be with my younger kids…..or that I’ve enjoyed seeing friends recently….or that one of my daughters got engaged, which is exciting news for us……and as all those possibilities wandered through my mind, fate intervened with shocking news in Nice: another act of terrorism, the man who rented a truck and ran down a crowd watching the fireworks on Bastille Day,  killed 84 people, and wounded 68, 50 of them children.

Where does it stop? How can this be happening? Some of us know the grief first hand of someone we know and love being decimated by these shocking acts. I told you in March of my niece who was at the airport in Brussels, during the attack there, and at 17, lost both her legs. She is still in the hospital, undergoing further surgeries.  And even when we don’t know the people affected, our hearts go out to them and their families….in Brussels, or Paris, or Orlando, or wherever it happens.  The plots get simpler and simpler. Suicide bombers in a nightclub, or a mad gunman with a machine gun who suddenly opens fire and alters or ends hundreds of lives forever. Now even simpler, a man rents a truck, drives it at full speed where he knows there is a gathering of people celebrating a national holiday, and runs over the crowd, killing and maiming people, destroying lives and dreams and families. It is unthinkable, unimaginable, inconceivable.

Once again, France is mourning its dead, grieving for children whose lives have been cut short and forever altered so needlessly. Several of my own children took a plane that night, and I had my heart in my mouth until they landed. Fear fills our lives, which is the intention. Nothing is sacred or safe, human life is cast aside, dreams die instantly, and futures are erased. Only a month ago, we were shocked and grief stricken over the carnage in Orlando, my own family has yet to recover from the attack in Brussels, and now we are watching it unfold again, with a holiday turned to horror, countless children dead, and others fighting for their lives.

In the long term, I cling to the belief that the forces of good are more powerful than the forces of evil, despite present evidence to the contrary. But in the short term, the news is so unspeakably awful, the scenes of terror so disheartening.

Somehow, we must cling to what is right in the world, we must somehow prevail against violence and fear and broken dreams. We are all changed by these events, and somehow our resolve must grow stronger to protect our world and loved ones, to stand by the values we believe in, and to cling to the principles we hold dear. Around the world, we are shaken by what we hear. It is not just happening to ‘other people’. It is happening to us too. In Paris, 50,000 police, and additional riot troups stood near the Eiffel Tower, to prevent a spectacular fireworks show from turning to violence, and at that same moment, innocent people were being murdered in the South after a similar show.

Please let it stop, let the world come to its senses again, may we find a way to live in peace, to cherish life and our fellow human beings. This cannot be the future for us, to watch civilization and humanity float away on a river of tears. May we have the courage and strength to stand for all that we believe in and preserve our world in peace. And may our prayers for peace and safety be heard.

With grief and all my love, Danielle

7/11/16, Paris Fashion

Posted on July 11, 2016

Hi Everyone,

Before anything else, I want to thank you for your overwhelmingly kind response to my blog entry about my late ex-husband Tom Perkins. I was soooo touched to read your many posts—-141 comments!!! You warmed my heart, and your kindness really touched me. I can’t thank you enough!!!

On a lighter note, it has just been one of the landmark weeks of Paris fashion: what used to be “Haute Couture” week, which is no longer a week, but just 3 days now, with only two of the big fashion houses still doing Haute Couture: Dior and Chanel. Not so long ago, many designers still did Haute Couture: Yves Saint Laurent, Givenchy, Balmain, Balenciaga among the most famous ones. And one by one, they closed their Haute Couture houses, and moved on to ready to wear, which is easier to mass produce, more accessible price wise, and fits better in modern times. But Haute Couture remains almost a lost art today: Haute Couture means that every single stitch on a garment is hand done, there is not a single machine stitch on it. It is incredibly labor intensive, and the price of those clothes reflects it. The clothes in the Haute Couture collections (shown in January and July, always for the next season) are really works of art. Incredibly beautiful, some are for daywear, suits and dresses, and most of the clothes are evening clothes with incredibly intricate beading and embroidery, sequins added by hand, one by one. There are few Haute Couture customers left in the world, because the clothes are so elaborate, and the price for all that labor is so high. But the clothes in those shows are just spectacular!! (and amazing hairdoes and make up to go with them), and jewels and accessories. And there is always a bridal gown at the end of the show, which is even more spectacular!!

There are a number of new, smaller houses that have cropped up, but they don’t have the power and experience, that the older houses do. Also, as a point of interest, it takes 12 years of internship to learn the techniques of haute couture—–as long as it takes to become a doctor!!

I usually go to the Dior and Chanel fashion shows, but only went to Chanel this time, which is always a gorgeous show and it was. They also do beautiful themes and decors for their shows. This time, the show was set in their ‘workshops’, with the real sewers and seamstresses demonstrating how they work, which was fascinating. And then the show began, and one after the other, 50 or 60 beautiful models came out in the clothes, strutting down the runway. It’s magical watching them, and the clothes were beautiful, some skirt suits, some pant suits, and lots of evening clothes. It was held in the Grand Palais, a glass domed antique structure for major events, and the bride was in pink this time!!

The audience is almost as fascinating as the clothes, press, movie stars, celebrities, people obsessed with fashion, and potential clients, all sitting on benches in mini bleachers, watching the clothes intently. I saw one little girl, watching with rapt attention and wide eyes as my own daughters used to (and now 3 of them work in fashion).

And most impressive of all, the collection is designed by Karl Lagerfeld, an 84 year old designer, a true genius of fashion, who has the energy of men half his age. He designs Chanel’s ready to wear too, Fendi, and his own label. He is tireless in his inspiration and constantly fresh vision. I am ALWAYS vastly impressed by his talent and energy.  It was an absolutely beautiful show, yet again!!

The days of “Couture Week” are filled with special events. I went to a party the night before the show, at a spectacular home on the Left Bank, an 18th century house, and the night of the show, I went to a restaurant that had once been a home. Beautifully decorated with antiques, with astoundingly delicious food, served in private rooms, I was with a small dinner party, and the meal and surroundings were exquisite.


Haute Couture is a magical thing, and a dying art. I feel privileged every time I see it. It is absolutely an art form, with skilled, talented craftsmen making it, directed by a brilliantly talented designer. For anyone who loves fashion, what a remarkable treat and feast for the eye. It is always a thrill to see it!!  And I thought that this collection was one of Mr. Lagerfeld’s best!!!

Have a great week,

love, Danielle

Filed Under Uncategorized | 2 Comments

7/4/16, HAPPY FOURTH!!!!

Posted on July 4, 2016

Hi Everyone,

I hope that all is well, that July is off to a great start, and that you have a well deserved day off and can relax and enjoy the Fourth of July holiday!!! It really is a fun holiday, with parades, picnics, barbecues, people of all ages getting together to celebrate. It’s a holiday which embraces everyone, and all ages can enjoy. It gives everyone a chance to celebrate all the good things that this country stands for. And I love hot dogs, fried chicken, corn on the cob, apple pie, and all the treats that go with it.

As with many holidays that have a lot of history and meaning behind them, we tend to forget how meaningful America’s independence was to those who fought hard for it, and how greatly Americans have benefited from it. And now it is a day to swim and sun and picnic and have fun with our friends. It’s good to remember what a great country the United States is, and all the wonderful things it stands for. It is a day to celebrate independence, freedom and the liberty that Americans enjoy every day. It is truly a great country, and I hope you have a wonderful July 4th!!!

love, Danielle

Filed Under Holidays | Leave a Comment

6/20/16, Dreams

Posted on June 20, 2016

Hi Everyone,

I hope you’ve had a great week, and that some really nice things happened to you this week. We can all use that, to give us a boost, even something small, a nice moment, something that makes us smile, or some piece of really good news.

I’ve been somewhat pensive, and quiet, in the almost two weeks since the passing of my ex-husband Tom. It’s a sad event for those of us who knew and loved and admired him, but he had an extraordinary life, a truly great life, and I think he got to do everything he wanted to do, and more. He lived to be a great age, and had opportunities and experiences few people have. He once went to Antarctica for several months on one of his boats—-(I stayed home!!! I would pay money, serious money, NOT to be on a sailboat, dodging icebergs in the dead of winter. He loved it, I would have hated it, so I didn’t go. But what an amazing experience for him, and the photos he brought back were fabulous!!). For those of us left behind when someone we love passes on, we are left with memories, the loose ends to tie up in our minds, and some introspection about their impact on our lives. So I have been quiet and reflective.

I’ve seen some close friends for lunch, and really enjoyed their company. And I had dinner at the home of good friends a few days ago. The wife is Japanese, so there were a number of Japanese people there, which was interesting, and nice to meet them. One of the couples had brought their nephew to dinner. He looked to be somewhere in his late twenties, was a biologist, and was leaving soon for a 6 month research project in Finland, so it was interesting talking to him. And at some point in the conversation, despite his youth, he said something that really caught my attention. He said that “You’re not old until your dreams become regrets”. Wow!! That is a very deep, and very true thought. No matter how old we are, we still have dreams, we ALL have dreams, or we should. Things we’ve always wanted to do, haven’t gotten to yet, and hope to get to one day. Some of it may not be realistic: Winning Miss Universe or Miss America at 55 or 65 or 70 is not likely to happen, you may have missed the boat on that. Or climbing Mount Everest. That could be sketchy too. But going somewhere that is actually feasible, traveling somewhere, building something, learning a language—-taking classes of some kind, or even writing a book. There’s no limit to what we can do—there may be some limits, but in many cases, we can fulfill at least some of our dreams. Some people even find their soul mate late in life. And bitterness and regret is not unique to old age. Some people give up on their dreams early, and shouldn’t. One of my favorite role models is an 88 year old friend of mine in New York. She is still working as an interior designer, takes classes to learn something new, goes to a book club, the theater, and sees nearly every movie and reads every book that comes out. She is still learning things at 88. She is a knock out, and so much fun. She is a living example to me of how I want to be when I’m her age, full of life, and busy, and still growing and doing, and fully alive. And obviously, good health helps.

I try to keep track of what my goals are every few years, and what I want to do. I try to keep track of it so those dreams don’t slip away. It’s easy to put our dreams away, and get bogged down in the every day. And sometimes I achieve those goals better than others. But I thought that what that young man said was so true….that you’re not old until your dreams turn into regrets (about what you didn’t do). It was a good wake up call for me, and I wanted to share it with you.

What are YOUR dreams? What do you want to do, that you haven’t gotten around to yet? It’s good to think about it from time to time. I have a rock on my desk with a saying carved on it, “It’s Never too late”. And another one that says “Follow your dreams”. It’s not too late for you to meet the right person, to take a class you’ve always wanted to take, to learn a language, learn to cook, take a writing class, a dancing class, to get in shape, to make new friends. I think that’s how people do stay young, interested and interesting, by opening new doors and windows, learning new things, even small things, and hanging onto those dreams.

It was a good reminder hearing that, and maybe for you too. Take good care, and have some fun! We all need it, a good belly laugh from time to time, and even just a warm moment with a friend. Have a terrific week!!

love, Danielle