Cortney’s elegance, fashion sense, and award winning food are a culmination of a lifetime commitment to sharing the finer things in life with those around her. Her etiquette and style can be traced all the way back to her childhood where she was raised on a sustenance farm in New Hampshire. Cortney’s parents, Ron and Sandra Ravenscroft, decided instead of getting caught in the corporate rat race of NYC or Boston, they would to move to the country - buy a plot of land - take apart a chicken barn and build a 1970's contemporary! Cortney’s father was a Wentworth educated architect and her mother a Litchfield, CT socialite.
Cortney spent the first years of her life living in an army tent with an Airstream as the family kitchen, surviving off of a two-acre garden. The family raised cows, pigs, chickens, and rabbits. Smoked their own meats and made their own maple syrup. Cortney and her family chopped down trees for both heating their home and cooking their food. Typically, the only purchased food items were wheat berries to grind for flour and white sugar. If other provisions were store bought it was from the local food cooperative. As young as the age of six, Cortney helped to stoke fires under the oil drums that were used to boil the pigs for scraping before slaughter. Then she would rush back to the kitchen to make dinner for the family and all of the slaughter helpers. Chores were not a simple task in Cortney’s youth - they were maintaining her families’ survival.
Although Cortney’s farm life sounds rustic and unsophisticated that is hardly the case. In the Ravenscroft household sitting down to meals held a great deal of importance. Literal farm to table took hard, back breaking labor, therefore being present at the table and honoring everyone’s hard work and the farm’s bounty was of utmost importance. Cortney’s parents did a great deal of entertaining during her childhood and in doing so good manners were essential to the entire family. There were often large family groups, political and business guests. Civility was an absolute requirement at all meals.
As a paternal descendant of Nathaniel Dickinson, brother of Emily Dickinson, Cortney and the Ravenscroft family appreciated a rich heritage of creativity and gracious living. The Ravenscroft’s regularly enjoyed the fine arts. They often attended the symphony, ballet, and other cultural events in Boston. Cortney was taught the appropriate decorum befitting a young, cosmopolitan lady.
From her farm roots to living in Australia, Italy, Budapest, Boston, Phoenix, Texas, Bay Area and NYC, she gained an appreciation for international sophistication, which led her to Hollywood, where she exceeded the term, ‘cool under pressure’ by beating out top chefs on NBC TV and winning $100,000 all with poise and style. Cortney began acting at a young age in summer-theater and has fallen in love with every aspect of production. Cortney has an elegant go-with-the-flow attitude and rolls with the punches – always with a smile on her face.
Cortney’s story is long and much better narrated with a full belly of good food, a glass of port and an old fashioned slide show.