Rachael Ray’s Home Office Is an Eclectic Mix of Comfort and “Hope”

published Sep 23, 2021
We independently select these products—if you buy from one of our links, we may earn a commission. All prices were accurate at the time of publishing.
Rachael Ray
Credit: John Lamparski/Stringer/Getty Images

Just over a year after a chimney fire destroyed her upstate New York home, Rachael Ray shared an image of her temporary home office in which she completed her latest book, “This Must Be the Place“. On Sept. 17, Ray posted a picture of the eclectic spot where she penned her latest book and reflected on how this space helped her cope with the loss of her home of 15 years.

“#ThisMustBeThePlace where I sat with loss and hope and wrote the new book,” Ray wrote in the caption of her post. “After we lost our house in the fire, our guesthouse became our new home and studio … and the garage became my new office. Between producing over 200 episodes of @rachaelrayshow, this is where I sat … and wrote. And now it’s here…” 

In August 2020, Ray started a fire in the fireplace just before dinner one evening, and within a matter of minutes, a neighbor driving through their backyard on an ATV began yelling that the roof was on fire.

The neighbor had already called the fire department and Ray said she rushed upstairs to grab “precious things,” she explained on her daytime TV show, like medicines, photographs, and notebooks. But within an hour, the entire house and 15 years’ worth of memories had burned to the ground.

Fortunately, Ray and her husband John Cusimano have a guest house and garage across the street from the main property. Ray set up shop to film her show in the guest house kitchen and began writing her new book in a makeshift office erected in the garage filled with light, warm wood tones, glass terrariums, fresh flower cuttings, and the memories she was able to save from the fire.

Although living through a house fire is a tragedy that comes with a lot of loss and grief, Ray has seemingly made the most of her situation and was inspired to help others going through dark times of their own — especially in the wake of the pandemic.

“I wanted to write this book because for the first time in my fifty-two years, everyone on the planet was going through the same thing at the same time,” she says of “This Must Be the Place”, per the book’s Amazon listing. “We were all feeling the same fear, heartsickness, worry, and sadness, but due to the nature of the virus, it was hard to connect. I connect through cooking, and I noticed that’s what many others were doing as well. We took to the kitchen to share something of ourselves — and cooking became the discipline, diversion, and devotion that got us through.”

“This Must Be the Place” is currently available for preorder.