Tag Archives: life in italy

Gratefully Grateful *6*

14 Feb

This has been a particularily strange week.  Besides the schizophrenic weather (one day gloriously sunny and the next with torrential winds and rain) things have just been a little wonky this week.  On Monday a little 6 year old girl at my kid’s tennis club kept asking me if I was her father’s girlfriend (and refused to believe me when I said no).  On Wednesday I received an indecent proposal (and I mean INDECENT) from an 80 year old man who lives down the street from me.  On Thursday I accidentally ate three lunches (oops).  And today my pilates teacher played only Christmas music during the entire one hour lesson.  Was there by chance a full moon the last few days?

But luckily in between all the weirdness there was lots of beauty and happiness.

This week I’m grateful for…


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… this bounty of green vitamin K packed vegetables that I picked up at the market this week.  Look how gorgeous that Romanesco Broccoli is!

IMG_4438… these colourful little scenes that I come across so many times a day.  I didn’t even mind that her sneakers were on the bureau and not in the shoe rack like they were supposed to be.IMG_4361… the fact that my kids get to grow up having the kindest, calmest and most generous and loving father around (sorry for the sappiness but it is Valentine’s Day after all!).

Have a great week-end everyone!

Gratefully Grateful *1*, *2*, *3*, *4*, *5*

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This and That

21 Jun

Summer has definitely arrived here in Northern Italy.
We’ve been enjoying temperatures in the high 30s with high humidity for the last few weeks.
From early morning to late evening we have all the doors and windows open letting a warm breeze blow through the house.
The fans have been on high speed in every bedroom during the night.
We all smell strongly of mosquito repellent.
The oven hasn’t been turned on in ages.
Dinner consists of salads, sliced meats, cheeses and melon.
The freezer is overflowing with every kind of popsicle, gelato, ice cream and freezie available.
Our home grown strawberries are ripe and ready to be eaten straight out the garden and still warm from the sun.
The heavy smell of the flowering jasmine plants that cover my neighbourhood is intoxicating.
The visits to the lake are getting more frequent.

Now all we have to do is get through these last two weeks of school and buy a new hammock and we’re off to the perfect start to summer.

Last week some good friends and I jumped in the car and escaped to Piemonte for a few days (we were in the charming town of Moleto where we visited last year).  We left the kids and husbands to fend for themselves and drove off into the sunset to enjoy some downtime amongst the vineyards.  We dined, we swam, we laughed (a lot), we chatted, we drank cocktails, we donned our fancy high heels, we went for walks and we just really enjoyed each other’s company.  And we decided that these little get-aways have to become more frequent in our lives because they feed the soul and give us a much needed rest from our daily grinds.  Many thanks to the husbands for their cooperation and understanding (even if they don’t know about our plans to do it more often yet).

When I was at The Hive European Blogging Conference in Berlin last month I participated in an amazing video workshop by the talented Kat from Zero The One.  At the end of the session she had us watch this beautifully shot video which made a serious impact on me and has been lingering in my thoughts ever since.  I actually have a very close family member going through a similar battle so it’s something that hits really close to home at the moment.   After watching it with my 11 year old daughters one of them said to me “Even if the story has something so sad about it I found it so beautiful at the same time”.  I have to wholly agree with her.  She then mentioned ” I didn’t even mind that he said the f-word a few times.  He deserves it.”.   Take a peek at the video and his blog here.

IMG_9228The other morning my friend sent me a message asking me to drop by for a tea and piece of cake.  This is what I was welcomed with.  I love my friends.

IMG_9233This cat has been living in our garden for the last few years.  She comes and sits at our kitchen door and waits for food every day.  We’ve named her FumoTre and we’re actually not even sure if she’s a she but nobody wants to check to make sure.  For some reason when she meows it sounds like she has a bad case of larygitis and we’re pretty sure she’s quite fond of us due to the amount of gifts she leaves us.

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I read this article on the Top 22 Unbelievable Places That Are Hard to Believe Exist and have added quite a few of these destinations to my “must see” list.  The wisteria tunnel in Japan, the pink Retba Lake in Senegal and canola flower fields in China are just too stunning not to witness in real life.

Happy Week-End Everyone!

Bits and Bobs

2 Apr


It has been a pretty busy and action filled few weeks around here.  We had my in-laws here for two weeks, an 11th birthday celebration, Easter and many day-trips and outings along the way.  Despite the horrible grey and rainy weather is was a really wonderful time for all of us.

Every now and then when I’d mention to friends that I had my in-laws here for a few weeks they would look at me with pity and tell me things like “you’ll get through it” and “hang in there”.  But luckily for me I really do have the greatest and most easy going in-laws ever.  I’ll admit it, I was quite sad when they left.  And the kids are still wandering around the house at a loss for what to do without their enthusiastic playmates that were always available to play a (4 hour) game of Monopoly, go for a walk into town or partake in a Ping Pong championship.

Here are a few images of our past few weeks:

A little trip to Lago di Como and lunch in the famous town of Bellagio.1-IMG_7098

I’m still in shock that my teensy weensy little twin baby girls turned 11 last week.  How did they go from being able to fit in their Papa’s shoe to these long lanky pre-teens?

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It was a rarity that we actually celebrated Easter in our own home this year.  Usually we are in Belgium at the grandparent’s house or somewhere far away on vacation.  Last year we were actually admiring the cherry blossoms in Kyoto on Easter morning.  But this year we really appreciated the first sun we had seen in weeks by strolling along the lake and then enjoyed an amazing Peking Duck dinner (not very Easter-y but so delicious).

Easter stroll at the lake.  Learning how to skip stones and admiring the perfectly round dot on the back of the Jack Russel who kept us company on our entire walk.

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