Rachael Ray is making the best of a bad situation.
The domestic doyenne gave a tour of how she and her husband, John Cusimano, decorated the guest house on their property where they’re staying after a fire ripped through their home in Lake Luzerne, New York in August.
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“This year, we’re not putting up trees, because no families are coming to visit and we lost our main home, our big house, but we absolutely would not let the holidays come and go without some decoration,” Rays said.
She then shared some sketches of how she wanted to decorate and thanked some local merchants for helping make her vision a reality following the blaze.
And what a reality it is. Garlands adorn each doorway, while the back porch features long strands of light that Ray said reminds her of falling snow. She also put up paper lanterns that resemble falling snowballs, while a pair of toy stuffed llamas wearing Christmas bows given to her by John sit in the corner.
Smack in the middle of the back table is a horse sculpture saved from the fire that looks exactly like the one Ray’s mother had in their home while she grew up that the TV star purchased at a flea market. The table also holds a bunch of living trees “because it’s all about renewal,” Ray said.
While Ray did not put up a traditional Christmas tree, she did point out a small Cyprus tree covered in white birds and lights they have in the house.
“We wanted it to look like Enzo, the tree we planted when we were married in Italy,” she said.
There’s also a wreath over a fireplace, ribbons over dining room windows to hide cords, a collection basked for grapes to make wine that’s filled with partridges and a wreath in the kitchen.
In a time of year when people reflect on what they have, Ray certainly does just.
"I've got to tell you, I don't know where I'd be without friends and a community and people so dear to me that helped me bring Christmas to life, even when you're not at home" she said.
“It honestly makes me want to burst into tears how much I miss our trees,” she added.
Ray said sprucing up the home for the holidays has been cathartic.
“It’s not a lot, but these partridges and pears and sugared fruits and things, they do make me feel at home and nostalgic and grateful for the family that I have and the life I’ve led,” she said. “And I love that you guys are a part of it. Thank you for sharing the holidays with us.”