Tuesday, December 13, 2016

Marital Counseling

For 3 decades I've had the honor of being hired to design residential gardens.  Included is the privilege of being asked into my clients homes.
Aside from noticing the transition across the years, "Do you want iced tea?", to, "Do you want mosquito repellent?", to, "Do you want a bottled water?", I've noticed how people live their lives, their relationships, children, responses to life not in what they say but how they pattern their home.
Then there are the babies.  Many of those babies are out of college & their mom/dad have hired me as a gift to design their first home.  How can this be?  I'm already wondering 'when' will I design a garden for my 'first grandchild'?
Of course there are the divorces.  One particular divorce I kept both ex-spouses, when each remarried, I designed those pair of homes.

Take a look inside the private estate and see some of the items up for bid at Sotheby's three separate auctions of the Mellon collection:

During one Garden Design, over a decade ago, 'mom' & I were talking the garden while her children and their friends were playing a theatrical dress-up, swords & crowns included, performing across the backyard with whirls through the kitchen where we were talking.  The family dogs were part of the theater too.  One of the funnest, enriching homes I've been in.
Last weekend this particular 'mom' called me back.  Time to enclose a front porch, change some windows into doors, turn a patch of Earth into a stone terrace, and lastly, remodel the kitchen.  We'll be doing it all in layers.
Life is still percolating richly in their home.  In their early 20's both children still live at home.  This time it's mom whirling and performing.  She's mere years away from retiring, a French teacher at the local school, and just finished licensing for being a yoga instructor.
Here's the deal with their happy home.  All are thriving, and mom/dad are going to a marital therapist learning how to get their children to move out.  I get it.  Both sides.  Their home is a love fest.
This theatrical will end well, interesting, but well.  

Take a look inside the private estate and see some of the items up for bid at Sotheby's three separate auctions of the Mellon collection:
Pics, above, Garden & Gun.
Even happy stories may include therapy.
Garden & Be Well,   XOT
Recognize Bunny Mellon in the pics, above?  Cannot get enough of that woman.  Looking forward to visiting Oak Spring library, have already ordered several books from there.  Road trip in my future to Oak Spring.  Anticipation.  Life is good.


Dewena said...

You were my therapist, Tara! Through many a sleepless night I clicked on various labels, losing myself as much in your words about life as in actual garden talk, taking notes, printing some posts for a basket by my reading chair labeled "Tara."

I loved reading today's story of this family. And the Bunny Mellon kitchen must be a story unto itself. Am I remembering correctly that Mrs. Parish worked with her on her houses? My books are packed away or I'd pull out the one by her daughter and read it again.

Penelope Bianchi said...

What a wonderful post!!

I think the most wonderful and brilliant loving people seek marital therapy.......when their lives change!
I think 26 years ago.....(yes!) When my husband sold his poultry company (founded by his grandfather in 1908 or so); He was 50! I asked him to "take over the business side" of my decorating business.......
I thought a good "therapist" would be a great idea so this did not disrupt our very happy marriage.

We sought help! He still describes it as "a great athlete needs a coach"! He describes that brilliant woman as a "life coach"! (Our joining forces enabled me to do vastly more big jobs and enlarge my career.....more than I ever could have without his incredible "left brain" and business-oriented mind.)
He became the captain of my "team" He was in charge of the "left brain" parts.....business, accounting, financial things.....(she insisted that these things never became "combined)!! She said....."Never meddle"!

"She is in charge of all right brain things.....ALL!! Creative decisions in all areas are hers."

"He: decides all left-brain things....billing, financial, accounting...budgeting."

She said the secret ws: To him: Never think she will become "left brain" and let her make all creative decisions.....all. (within the budgets)

To me: "Never think he will become right brain or creative......follow his financial things".

And this will be a match made in heaven!

She also said......(I will never forget this....) To him....."Right brain people are 2% of the population!
And the rest of the 98% work for them."

(I thought he would run screaming out of the room!) She then said....."The 2% could not get across the street without the 98 %; but without the 2% they would have no jobs. the creative people in the world provide jobs for everyone else!"

My husband, God bless him said....."I know that.....I know Penny has a God-given talent.....and I am so lucky I can work with her and she can spread it far and wide.....and I am so so lucky to be able to help her do that!" I could not make this up........he has been helping me......tremendously......for 27 years!!!
I am so grateful!

He says....."don't ask me what color it is....but I can tell you what it will cost, when it will be delivered and who and when it will be installed! A true great combination!!! I am so blessed!

I am grateful with all of my heart. I cannot recommend "marital counseling" more!!
(Once, as we were dancing out of her door....he said.......'I just love seeing LU! but when will we stop coming to see her?" I said...."When one if three of us dies!"

We still see her once a year or so.....just when we disagree about something......she decides. We both respect her so much.....we just tell our opinions....she decides....and we go with it! What a luxury!!!

I love that kitchen!! That floor!!!! Yikes!!!

Penelope Bianchi said...

Bunny Mellons last decorator for many years was Bruce Budd!! Still active in New York!!

Henry Ces said...

Nice article. Highly recommended. The thoughts are clear and well explained. Thankyou for sharing your work, truly worth reading. On the other hand, if you’re interested in Marital Counseling, feel free to visit our website. Thankyou and Godbless!