Sunday, March 31, 2013

Little Z's Message

"Hi Lisa and Stayse you are my aunts!" We so are.

Friday, March 29, 2013

The Words

Completely and totally absorbing. I was mesmerised by every frame.

(photo kidnapped from enthunder)

Thursday, March 28, 2013


We are finally home from Italy/Europe, although our luggage is in Paris. Whatever, I'm going back to bed.

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Day 11

Tucker and our view of Paris. Not exactly how any of us wanted to see the city.

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Day 10

The day from hell. After sitting on the tarmac for three hours, we were then told that we were heading back to the airport and then told to check in at the Hilton. Lord a-mighty, we gotta catch a 9:15pm Alitalia flight to Paris where we have to wait 10 hours to get a connecting flight to Philly. Seriously? I'll be damned if I'm gonna wait in a god damn airport for ten freakin' hours. We are checking our tired asses in to the Charles De Gaulle Hilton and getting some sleep. I am so ready to go home.

Monday, March 25, 2013

Day 9

Wandered through town, stopped in the shops and bought tons of lemon goodies. Then lunch and yay! Gelato! I got chocolate and coffee and Nicole picked vanilla and strawberry. Oh man, soooo good. I am in love with Positano. It's paradise.

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Day 8

Looking for pebbles and broken bits of tile on the beach in Positano and feeling insanely and deliriously happy. Til we are nearly knocked down by a wave. But we recovered nicely.

Saturday, March 23, 2013

Day 7

A long day of taking taxis and trains and finally a car from Naples train station to Positano. Since I was eighteen I've wanted to see Positano. It did not disappoint. Our view from the balcony overlooking the sea was glorious and stunning and Nicole and I are beside ourselves with glee! Dinner at the hotel's restaurant was divine. I had grilled veggies from the hotel's garden that were out of this world. The weather is warm and we are the happiest we've been the entire trip. This place is beyond beautiful.

Friday, March 22, 2013

Day 6

Tucker in St. Mark's Square!

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Day 5

Up at the butt crack of dawn to see the Tuscan sun rise, Roberto picks us up in his taxi and drops us at the train that takes us to Pisa, then to Florence, and finally to Venice! Venice is even more beautiful than you can possibly imagine. We stepped out of the train station and were gobsmacked. Went and caught a water bus to the hotel (Hotel San Moisè) which we somehow managed to find on our own, then went out for a stroll and to Piazza San Marco.
Everything in Venice is just gorgeous. The best we've seen of Italy. We stop for dinner and I finally get pizza! Margherita, to be exact, and a bottle of wine that's delicious, followed by tiramisu and cannoli that we bring back to the room. Nicole is so thrilled that I'm letting her drink. I'm the square aunt who doesn't let the girls get away with anything. But technically she is legally allowed to drink in Italy so I don't feel too guilty.
Our hotel is adorable and the room is absolutely charming. Anna at the front desk was beyond sweet and oh-so-helpful. While Nicole reads, I manage to watch an episode of Prison Break - in Italian, of course. However, Stacy Keach's voice is perfection and whoever was dubbing it just did not compare. Oh! And then they had Storage Wars in Italian, too! It was silly and ridiculous and I was very happy.

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Day 4

Relaxed all day - it was wonderful. Walked the grounds of the resort, which was empty and quiet, went into town and got tons of food and a bottle of wine which we soon finished. Tomorrow we are off to Venezia!

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Day 3

We are in Tuscany! Piombino to be exact. The room is nice - I have my own separate bedroom - but it is not without flaws. There are ants on the floor, the door doesn't lock, if you turn the handle a certain way the entire door comes off the hinge at the top, the bidet is broken, the TV doesn't work, they gave us one roll of TP for two people for one week and it's off season so nothing is really open. We are low on water and haven't eaten since we first landed in Rome. By 6pm I am feeling like this was all a huge mistake and I'm in way over my head. I'm like one of those silly girls who spends her entire life dreaming of her wedding and is so all consumed by the dress, the flowers, the reception, the church, and the cake, that she completely forgets about the marriage. Then as she walks down the aisle she realises that she has made a colossal mistake but it's too late to back out.

Dinner was awful. We went over to the hotel restaurant and I informed the waitress that I was "Vegetariano" and she nodded, "Si, si." My linguine arrived with absolutely no meat. But it was completely covered in mussels, shrimp, and some crustacean who still had eyes. Luckily, Nicole is an angel from heaven and she immediately took all the dead creatures off my plate and moved them to hers. She then covered the crustacean with the mussel shells so I wouldn't see him. Ugh. Hopefully we can go into town tomorrow and if they take Visa, we are buying everything in sight. But man, the Tuscan countryside is gorgeous.

Monday, March 18, 2013

Day 2

The Spanish Steps!

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Day 1

We arrived in Rome at about 8am after getting no sleep on the flight. I kinda figured this since I hadn't been on an airplane in 23 years. The ride was fine though, but the shuttle driver that took us from Fiumicino to our hotel was a madman. I mean, I know driving in Rome is second only to Cairo, but Lord Jesus, this guy was out of control. Going up one way streets, pulling a u-turn in the middle of an intersection and all but running down any pedestrian in his path. Oh, and he sucked at driving stick. I felt every gear as it slammed into place. He was very nice but he should have his license revoked. By the grace of God, we finally reached Universo Hotel but had to sit around the lobby for a few hours until we could check in. I was nauseous as hell from the drive and just needed to sit while Nicole was chain smoking out at the curb. We walked around a bit near the hotel, but I wanted to lay the hell down.
We finally checked in and proceeded to somehow get locked out on the balcony. Seven floors up. Nicole in her pj's and no socks and me without a jacket. We were fucked. Royally so. I yelled down to a fella on the street and told him we were locked out - stupid Americans. He told management and they sent someone up. Hurray - we're saved! Not quite. I had dead bolted the door, so they were unable to swipe the key card and get in. So this wonderful Filipino man with a gorgeous Italian accent climbed over the ledge from the adjoining balcony and broke us back in through the sliding glass door. Humiliation galore. Time for bed!

Saturday, March 16, 2013

The Journey Begins

Today my twenty year old niece, Nicole and I are off for Italy. We fly outta Philly tonight at 6:20pm and hit Fiumicino airport at 7:55am. We have packed way too much (my niece went overboard big time) but she'll do most of the heavy lifting. We are both anxious to get on the way and hoping we get some sleep on the plane. More to come!

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Otis Redding

Lately, I just cannot stop listening to this man's voice. It's pure perfection.

(photo kidnapped from

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Helmut Newton

(photo kidnapped from albertosanchezmena)

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Unknown Soldier

This laminated photo flew onto my father's grave on Sunday. There was no name on the back and I didn't want to leave it. I'm so sentimental and a bit loony when it comes to photographs, so I picked him up and brought him home with me. Yet another face for me to ponder on who they were and what they were like...

Monday, March 11, 2013


So I finally have my passport and everything is lined up for Saturday evening's flight to Rome. I've waited nineteen years to travel to Italy and now that it is finally, actually going to happen, I want to call it off and slip into a coma. I don't wanna go. My mind wanders and works itself into a frenzy - what if we get lost, what if the hotels have no record of us and we've nowhere to sleep, what if the trains aren't running and I have to rent a car and drive the Autostrada, what if we oversleep and I don't get to see the Colosseum or Bocca della Verità, what if I get sick, what if Nicole gets sick, what if this turns out to be the worstest vacation ever. It weighs on my shoulders like no other. Hopefully I'm panicking for no damn reason and everything will go smoothly and Nicole and I will be the happiest we've ever been. But still, I'm freaking out.

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Charlie Day

Everything about this man makes me happy.

(photos kidnapped from: latimes - thereelist -fanpop)

Saturday, March 9, 2013

I'm Awesome

Over on the Mirror, Mirror blog, Kjerstin posted about Ten Steps to Positive Body Image. One of the steps was to come up with a top ten list of the things you like about yourself, but they can't have anything to do with your weight or how you look. I got two down and I called Marina for help. So here it be, my lovely little reader, the top ten bestest things about me; in my opinion, of course:

  1. My incredibly bizarre sense of humour (for example, whenever someone says, "Mmm, something smells good!" I will inevitably reply, "Oh, that's cuz I just farted.")
  2. I have exceptional and eclectic taste in art, film, music, dance, etc.
  3. Usually I can find the good in just about anyone
  4. I'm a vegetarian (this one Marina pointed out - "You care about animals.")
  5. I'm friendly and try to put those around me at ease
  6. I'm very thoughtful (this was another one Marina gave me. It's true, I am.)
  7. I'm compassionate and caring about the people I love as well as the people they love.
  8. Always willing to help, even if I really don't wanna (like when Melissa's friend's sister needed to move. In July. We all nearly had a heat stroke.)
  9. I am forever trying to find ways to improve myself
10. And another one from Marina: "You are keeping the postal service alive and well." She's right. I definitely value old traditions like letter writing.

Friday, March 8, 2013

Paradise Falls

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Most Romantic Film Moments

My top ten in no particular order - just so youse know:

~the rooftop scene by the tomato plants in Return to Me
~the witty back and forth on the bus in The Adjustment Bureau
~Frank and Janet smoking and talking on the train in The Manchurian Candidate
~Parry and Lydia on the steps in The Fisher King
~when Josef tells Hanna "I'll learn how to swim." in The Secret Life of Words
~the meet-cute in Chapter Two ("Five minute man.")
~when Hubbell ties Katie's shoe in The Way We Were
~Marcus winning a kiss from Melena in Hurricane Streets
~in the apartment by the front door in Rocky
~Richard walking towards Elise in Somewhere in Time

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Keepin' 'em Spinnin'

1. The Wonders - That Thing You Do
-Playtone Records 1996
-B Side: Dance With Me Tonight

2. Juice Newton - Queen of Hearts
-Capitol 1981
-B Side: River of Love

3. Strawberry Alarm Clock - Incense and Peppermints
-B Side: Birdman of Alkatrash

4. Paul Anka - Put Your Head on My Shoulder
-ABC Paramount
-B Side: Don't Ever Leave Me

5. The Shocking Blue - Venus
-B Side: Hot Sand

6. Fats Domino - Blue Monday
-B Side: What's the Reason I'm Not Pleasing You

7. Barry Manilow - Can't Smile Without You
-Arista 1978
-B Side: No More Riders

8. Billy Joel - Just the Way You Are
-Columbia 1977
-B Side: Get It Right the First Time

9. The Chantay's - Pipeline
-Dot Records
-B Side: Move It

10. Robert John - Sad Eyes
-EMI 1979
-B Side: Am I Ever Gonna Hold You Again

Monday, March 4, 2013


...Nicole and I will be here very soon.

(photo kidnapped from nexttriptourism)

Well, that is if I can get my passport tomorrow. Cross your fingers for me, dear reader!

Saturday, March 2, 2013

Dragons, Crowns, & Clergymen

Nick Drake

Place to Be
Fruit Tree
Things Behind the Sun
Three Hours
One of These Things First
Free Ride
River Man

Cat Stevens

I Think I See the Light
Don't Be Shy
If You Want to Sing Out
Into White

Harry Chapin

I Wanna Learn a Love Song
Sunday Morning Sunshine
A Better Place to Be

~November 20, 2005

Friday, March 1, 2013

Jackson and Gemma

When my nephew was in utero his name was to be either Jackson or Gemma. So clearly I named his favourite puppy Gemma, that way the name doesn't go to waste. Here he is at dinner time with his lady love at his side. Can you guess what tv show his parents watch?