Dec 01

2015

Life On The Farm: When Coco Met Jake

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Coco and Jake looking back over the first Owl’s Hole they ever jumped, just one of many firsts together.

It’s been 10 days since we said goodbye to Jake, and my eyes still fill with tears each time I think of him. We haven’t even sold him yet! Two Sundays ago we sent him to live in an agent’s yard who will market him, show him to potential buyers and negotiate his eventual sale. He’s had a lot of interest and a handful of people are coming back this week for a second try on him. Despite my sadness, I feel so happy for the lucky person who is going to take him home. But I didn’t always feel that way.

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Little eleven-year-old Coco on the day she met five-year-old Jake.

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It was love at first sight for these two.

We bought Jake for Coco when he was five and she was nearly twelve. Five is definitely on the young side for a horse intended to be ridden by a child. But Coco had always inherited excellent and more experienced ponies from her older cousins – they were “push button” as horse people like to say when referring to a horse that will do anything you ask on command. First Mr Teddy and then Sailor followed by Polo had all made Coco a confident and daring rider. So both her coach and her grandmother felt she was up to the task of taking on a bit more of challenge. ..


Aug 26

2015

I ♥ Your Riding Style: Jackie O

I know. As chic as she is you probably feel you don’t ever have to see another style icon pic of Jackie O as long as you live. I’m with you on that. But now that I have gotten so into riding, and what to wear when riding, Jackie O’s style on a horse has rekindled my awe of her chicness. These days, riding gear has gotten very technical and branded. I am constantly cutting off visible tags, blackening out logos with sharpies, and trying to find the most classic and pared down jackets, jodhpurs and boots while still keeping an eye towards practicality...


Mar 14

2014

I ♥ Your Country Style: Amanda Harlech

 

We’ve all seen and admired Amanda Harlech in her Chanel. As Karl Lagerfeld’s muse, we see her at every Chanel event wearing the most enviable dress with her hair just messy enough to be cool but still look chic. For the most part, this is her Paris life where she spends her professional time. But what really intrigues me is her England life, her private world that she has graciously shared with us through Vogue, Vogue Living, etc over the years...

Feb 20

2014

Life on the Farm: Miss Coco B in Teen Vogue

Coco is my twelve year old. It was always her dream to live on our farm in England – to spend her free time outside and be surrounded by horses. Fulfilling that dream in the last year and a half has arguably been the highlight of her life so far. The paternal side of Coco’s family is known for their dedication to horses and Coco clearly inherited that gene. When she was just a year and a half old, we spent Christmas here in England and every morning she ran to the window pointing at the horses in the field and yelling “hotchy!..


Jul 18

2013

Life in England: Stately Rides, part 2

So at the end of our first full day of riding, we arrived ready for a rest and a cup of tea at the home of Christopher and Marian Houghton near Broadway. To me, this quintessentially British couple and their home epitomised the best of English country life. Christopher has been the secretary and then chairman of the North Cotswold hunt for 25 years, and his family’s affection for the sport is evidenced as soon as you walk in their door with an impressive and worn collection of hunting coats, boots, hats and whips in the front hall...


Jul 17

2013

Life in England: Stately Rides, part 1

About a year ago, my husband mentioned a company that a childhood friend had started. It’s called Stately Rides, and it gathers a small group of people together and gives you on a horse riding tour of some of the most beautiful countryside in Gloucestershire while staying in a beautiful private home each night. I knew immediately that I would have to go on this trip and I knew when and with whom. Each summer our family friend Regena comes to stay with us with the simple goal of riding horses incessantly with my daughter Coco and me...


Nov 28

2012

Life on the Farm: The Fog

In England, the fog is one of the the first signs that autumn is coming. This year it started in the beginning of September, so early in the morning that you could easily miss it if you slept in. The first time I saw it, while looking out my bedroom window at the crack of dawn, it took my eyes a minute to adjust to the fact that it wasn’t water flooding the valley below us. Now that I’ve seen the fog on quite a few mornings, I have noticed that it starts as a thick, flat blanket deep in the valley with the hills rising up through it like the humps of a sea monster...


Nov 05

2012

Life on the Farm: Catching the Sun

Here’s the thing about the dreaded English weather. It’s not that bad. Really. You just have to get the hang of it, which entails dropping everything (no matter how important) to run outside when the sun is shining. As long as I get my hour or so of outdoor time each day, or even just most days, I am fine. The trouble is, you don’t know when that is going to be. Take last Friday for example. The kids were home on their half-term break so I planned to ride with them in the morning when the sun was even just hinting at coming out...


Oct 18

2012

While we’re on the subject of Stella McCartney, I was in the Taschen store in Paris the other day and discovered her mother Linda McCartney’s book called “Life in Photographs.” I was SO inspired by them, especially by the ones of her family in the countryside, for obvious reasons. They are natural but stylish, in the most unpretentious way. And they transcend celebrity – they would be intriguing even if they were of a family of people we didn’t know. I’m going to attempt to recreate the family portrait with animals for our own family Christmas card. Do you think we can get all our animals to hold still for long enough? Or maybe its fine if they all wonder around us. That’s what I loved about Linda’s photos – she caught a natural moment. They are not posed, but they are perfectly composed.


Oct 02

2012

Life in England: So Far

It’s been more than three months since we arrived to live in England for our “creative sabbatical” and to be honest I feel like things are just starting to get creative. The summer was filled up with house guests and travel and family time, but now that the kids are settling back into school, I have had some time to find a routine and get a sense of what “real life” will be like for me here. Even though I am really just at the beginning, I already know I am incredibly happy here...