Thursday, December 10, 2015

City Views, Country Dreams

Good morning from New York.

The pace of December has increased.  Last Sunday my friend Elizabeth and I attended the annual holiday open house at the very grand Fifth Avenue New York Public Library.


The Sunday afternoon weather was quite mild, much more pleasant for waiting in the queue for the grand doors to open than were some prior snowy Sunday afternoons.


Once inside, there were other queues, some for coat checking, and some for puppet shows and story telling, which took place a regular intervals in various elegant library rooms.


I always enjoy seeing the excitement of the children and seeing many great holiday outfits.


Red dresses are always a popular choice.  Some parents adopt headgear created by balloon artists.


This little girl's hat might be just a little too large.

The following photograph shows an elegant water fountain.  Other beverages were available...red and white wine, punch and sparkling water.


This plaid dress reminded me of one I once wore as a child.


There were lots of refreshment tables throughout the library halls.


Punch to the left, linked pretzels to the right.  Cookies at the end of the same table.


The interior of the library provides many beautifully tranquil spots, even during this big party.


Here's a balcony view of the main entrance hall.


One of the costumed stilt walkers needed a bit of help on her way to a little sit down break.  The hallways have lots of interesting exhibits on display.


The balloon artist in red and green is having a consultation with a little girl about which balloon shape she would prefer.


The following photograph shows a "living statue" whose sporadic movements elicited high-pitched squeals from children just passing by.  Very amusing!


Here's another balcony view, showing one of several glee clubs who provided entertainment, as did a traditional jazz band.  Upstairs a very cool jazz band was playing sets in a large room that provided chairs for folks who wanted to sit, sip their wine and listen awhile.


Red dress, white tights and shoes were a very good look.


On the library's lowest floor, there is a ballroom, where a band played lots of tunes for all sorts of dancing.





To the right and left of the dance floor were tables featuring a light buffet that also attracted lots of attention.

It is such fun to attend this annual event.  It's always a great way to get into the holiday spirit.  Since the weather was so mild, after leaving the party, it was pleasant to walk up Fifth Avenue, taking a few more photos of various decorations.


The above photo is of Saks' main floor with its festive garlands.

Below is a photo of one of Saks' holiday windows. with lots of daylight reflection.  I realized that many Fifth Avenue shop windows seemed to have used many Swarovski crystals.  I wonder why they used similar themes.


Just across Fifth Avenue is the very tall Rockefeller Center Tree.


The Saks windows celebrated various parts of the world, and I took a photograph of the one honoring beautiful Paris.


The windows look very icy, even if outdoors on the Avenue, it was warm.


Continuing along, I came upon some pretty table top displays at D&G.


Tiffany has lots of elegant little vignettes.  With gems.


At last, I approached Bergdorf Goodman, the shop whose windows always set the standard.


I think that Bergdorf's made excellent creative use of the sparkles.  As always, I apologize for the reflections, yet sort of like the look.


The lady miner above looks quite chic in her lavender.  In the following photograph, we see the king of the sea.


Another view.  He is covered with pearls.


Here's his tortoise.


I love the turbaned monkey fortune teller.


The redhead's dress is magnificent, isn't it?


The next picture features the Crown Jewels.  Wow!


These windows draw many admirers.  I like the greenery framing the windows.


One more dazzling photograph.


Even the more sedate mannequin by the side door to the shop is rather elegant.


Just across West 58th Street is the Plaza Hotel.


This office building brings out its candy canes every December.


Yesterday, an appointment way across town on the East Side, allowed me to see what Bloomingdale's had done in its windows.  More crystals is the answer.


I found these windows very shiny and showy, but not very beautiful.


For a complete change of mood, here is a traditionally decorated Upper East Side townhouse.  It's great that the pretty tree has not yet shed its leaves.


My destination was very near the East River and it occurred to me that I might not before have ever posted a photograph of the lovely 59th Street Bridge, that Simon and Garfunkle once sang about.  The bridge has now been formally renamed to honor a former mayor, but many folks still think of it as the 59th Street Bridge.


I'm hoping that you all will have gotten some idea of what some parts of New York City look like now.  It's possible that I might yet manage another post before Christmas.  Time is growing more precious with each hour.

Thank you all for your visits and comments.

44 comments:

  1. Frances, you have brightened this season for me with your festive photos. Those windows with the greenery around them are fabulous. Enjoy your wonderful city, and your preparations for the holiday, and thanks again for sharing the joys of New York with us!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Carol, I'm so glad that you enjoyed these city views! xo

      Delete
  2. So glad to see those windows. I hear so much about them but have need seen them. Thank you.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. There's always a bit of anticipation of the BG windows. They are always elegant, but quite over the top. (I was a bit surprised that some of the big shops really don't make much of an effort in their windows.)

      xo

      Delete
  3. You have brought back many happy memories of New York for me and your photographs are very much taken the way of photographs I would take, particularly of cars and street scenes and buildings and how life just is in a city. I enjoyed it tonight more than you can imagine. Thank you so much Frances.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Rachel, it is my great pleasure to share some of the city I do love (most of the time.) There are so many interesting views around every corner. xo

      Delete
  4. Dear Frances, everything is interesting in this post - from the first to the last word. You have captured the atmosphere of Christmas in New York and it's so delightful to feel it in your photos. I'm most impressed by the holiday activities in the Public Library - adults and children having fun together, close to art, enjoying what they love! Giving a new meaning to a well-known space/place is something that I've always found inspiring!
    Christmas in "knocking on the door"! I'm wishing you lots of smiles, while preparing to meet it!:)xx

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Rossichka, I can well imagine your puppetry workshops being right at home at this open house! It's a glorious afternoon.
      xo

      Delete
  5. Frances, those windows are truly amazing. What a pleasure it must be every year to see the different themes.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Barbara, I do hope to take a few more pictures before Christmas, but admit that time is getting very precious with every passing hours. Thanks for your visit. xo

      Delete
  6. Such gorgeous sights. I love Saks.
    I'll wish you a very Merry Christmas and Happy New Year now just in case you don't get time to post again.
    Love and Hugs from The UK-x-

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks so much for your kind wishes, Sheila. I still have hopes of at least one more post before Christmas. Fingers crossed! xo

      Delete
  7. Dreamy trip to New York at Christmas! What a wonderful building you visited and so much life and colour as always in your pictures.

    ReplyDelete
  8. Marianne, that main New York Public Library building is full of treasures all year long, but really knows how to have a great party, too. xo

    ReplyDelete
  9. What a lovely holiday treat! Those windows are magnificent! I love the fortune teller!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I want to return for another look at those windows. Yes, the fortune teller's window is a real gem. (As are Willa's recent photos over at your place!) xo

      Delete
  10. Thanks for your sharing NY at Christmas time with us! Looks really really nice and I hope to visit the city sometime in the future...
    Oh strange with the hyacint bulbs Frances! Hm..hope you find some before Christmas :)
    Warm hug,
    Titti

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'll keep an eye out for hyacinths...they will probably show up in the new year. So, hoping to get some paper white narcissus bulbs started this week. xo

      Delete
  11. What fun it was!
    So sorry not to have commented until now.
    You do such a splendid job showing everyone the delights of our lovely city - to me it sparkles extra bright in winter.
    Hoping to see you very soon.
    x

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Definitely fun to attend the party with you! The pace of things has really picked up this part week...next week, more of the same.
      Yes, looking forward to seeing you soon. xo

      Delete
  12. Hello, I am a long time reader but I don't think I have commented here previously. I really enjoy your posts and wanted to say so.

    I wonder if you will have the time or the inclination to visit the Steven Kasher Gallery to see the exhibition by British textile artist Mr. Finch? There is a link here: http://www.thisiscolossal.com/2015/12/toadstool-sculptures-mister-finch/?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+colossal+%28Colossal%29

    Best wishes.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks so much for visiting and leaving your kind comments. I do know of Mr Finch's work, and had not realized that he'd already had a show at the Kasher Gallery, and that a new pop up exhibit opened today. Ironic that a friend and I were at another Chelsea gallery today to see a Morandi exhibit, and could have popped over to 26th Street. I will try to find time to see Mr Finch's toadstools before Christmas. xo

      Delete
    2. I do hope that you manage it. I would love to see his work.

      Delete
    3. Think that I will manage it...and will let you have my thoughts on the exhibit. xo

      Delete
  13. What fun to see The City at Christmas. Many thanks for taking the time to post all these wonderful photos.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Colette. I do enjoy this time of the year in the city and it's a pleasure to share a bit of what I experience.

      Delete
  14. So nice to see NY in Xmas time! I hope I will get a chance to see it by myself oneday.... Untill than I 'm so glad that you share it with us!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Jolanda, I'm so glad you've been enjoying my city views, and do wish that you will be able to see them for yourself before too long.

      (Of course, you know how much I appreciate your posts!) xo

      Delete
  15. So much pleasanter to stroll about admiring Christmas windows with you from the uncanny warmth of our UK winter too. But just a little harder somehow to believe it is Christmas. I think I like the Tiffany window the best. My mother decorated our Christmas tree (a fake silver tinsel one) with turquoise and silver baubles one year. We were a bit put out not to see our favourites on a real tree but it was very tastefully done.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Dear Lucille, those Tiffany window are rather good, because the scale of the space suits the gems that have been introduced into various elegant city views. (I'm wondering if someone actually buys the gems in these displays.)

      My own childhood tree memories take me back to my brothers and myself going along in the car with Daddy to the Christmas tree stand sponsored by the local volunteer firemen, as a fundraising project. The tree would come home with us in the car and would spend a certain number of days in a bucket on our back patio area.
      Tradition required that the tree not be brought indoors and decorated until Christmas Eve. Usually, it was Daddy and me that handled all this decorating, with Mom helping with some final adjustments.
      (I must ask my brothers where they were during these decorating occasions.)

      xo

      Delete
  16. Hello Frances - I love reading your blog with your pictures of Manhattan. I saw this today and wondered if you'd seen any of these murals - http://www.thisiscolossal.com/2015/12/the-audobon-mural-project/

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Mrs Jones, thank you so much for visiting, commenting and sharing the link to the fabulous mural project photographs. I'd heard about this project, but so far haven't seen the paintings in person. Best wishes!

      Delete
  17. I love huge magnificent libraries, they are almost as good as huge magnificent museums. You must show us the "Museum of AMerican Folk Art" at some point. The "living statue" must have been fun for everyone taken off guard. Window displays, out of this world, especially the King of the Sea!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Jeri, I promise to eventually do a post about the American Folk Art Museum. You probably know about its financial problems that lead to its closing its 53rd St site, and its return to the site in my neighborhood near Lincoln Center. Like many interesting NYC places, I don't visit it enough! xo

      Delete
  18. Oh, what amazing displays! I love the Tiffanys window - it's a ll so spectacular and so Very New York, as I imagine it. Much love from a badly corresponding friend xxxx

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Gretel, I am so glad that you enjoyed this visit. I think that you would find lots to amuse you in this big city during Christmastime. Too much to see really, but that's part of the show, I guess!
      You are a busy friend...not at all a bad correspondent. xo

      Delete
  19. Dear Francis, I had to write to tell you how much I enjoy your blog. What lovely descriptions of such a beautiful city. We used to live in Warwick, New York, and our trips to the city are one of the things I miss the most about living there....And Christmas in New York was such a treat. (The window displays are just the most fun, aren't they?) Thank you for bringing me back, if only for a brief time. Hope you have a lovely holiday!

    Elle

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Elle, I appreciate your visits and comment so much. Please do keep stopping by. I enjoy sharing a bit of this huge city in my posts, giving an idea of what it is to actually live here. Best wishes for a great holiday season!

      Delete
  20. Hello Frances,  just found your blog and love it and I'm looking forward to reading more of your posts. Merry Christmas

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Please do stop by again...I plan on another post before Christmas. Until then, let me wish you a very Happy Christmas!

      Delete
  21. Dear Frances,

    New York looks beautiful at Christmas time: the library, the fairy lights everywhere, the huge Christmas tree and shop windows. I hope to see it all for myself one day. Wishing you a Merry Christmas!

    Love,

    Madelief x

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Madelief, I do wish that my December schedules had allowed me many more posts, but for now the sampling I've shared will have to do. Still have one more planned.

      You'd love NYC in December...I know you would!

      Happy Christmas, and many thanks to you for all your beautiful posts throughout 2015. You always keep me hoping to eventually have a garden. xo

      Delete
  22. Dear Frances
    Many thanks for that lovely Christmas trip - I always feel that I am 'right there' when I read your posts. One of my sisters is currently on her way to New York for Christmas - she usually lives in Bangkok but is spending the season with her daughter who currently is working in NYC.
    Thank you for calling in on my old blog - it is a bit neglected but I will pop back and care for it now again.

    A lovely Christmas to you and yours
    Best wishes
    Jenny

    ReplyDelete
  23. Thank you so much for your visit and comment, Jenny. Hoping your sister will have a grand time in NYC. The city is all dressed up for her visit!

    I think you know how much I love your posts. Each of them is a complete joy.

    Happy Christmas! xo

    ReplyDelete