Wednesday, 16 September 2009

and now onto part deux.

Our next adventure: tomorrow we fly from Rome to Nairobi. I still can't believe it.

Years ago I had told Steve that before having kids I wanted to go to Africa, and he promised me we would.

Stunning photo by Giovanni Mari
I wasn't going to hold him to it, but I love him for honoring it.

Tuesday, 15 September 2009

Big anniversary month in our family.

Nonna & Nonno celebrate 53 years today. We get to be with them!

If my marriage can be anything at all like theirs has been--full of love, compassion, patience, loyalty, and longevity--then I will have lived a good life.

Saturday, 12 September 2009

Where lamb is honeymooning

The wedding was wonderful. I can't wait to post pictures and proudly gush about my lamb, who looked like one of those little figurines that pops up out of jewelry boxes and twirls around to the music. After a year of sadness for my family in Italy, we finally had a reason to celebrate.

Vows were said. Rice was thrown, happy tears were shed; we feasted, we danced. I will reflect on it more later. Right now I get the gift of a few lucky days with family whom I don't get to see often enough.

Lamb & Adam leave for their honeymoon today, to Sardegna's northern coast. here is an article in this month's NG Traveler that talks all about it.

Thursday, 10 September 2009

My little sister getting married. Today!

The same girl who did the burr-butt, would come knocking on my door every night nearly in tears asking me to let her sleep in my bed, who played with me in hotel bathrooms as we waited for my parents to wake up when on vacation, would put her arms around everyone's necks and not let go for dear life when in any all swimming pools, ran from the tippity-top of the bubble tub ride at Wet 'n Wild all the way to the bottom just as we were boarding our raft...but lest you think she's not tough...this is also the same girl whom I cheered my heart out for as she placed in the top 10 at cross-country regionals (as a junior!), who pulled off the most consummately professional interview ever during her confirmation process (while I proceeded to collapse in fits of giggles), and who I watched grow up into this awesome person with one of the hugest hearts of surely anyone I'll ever meet. I love you Lamb. You're the best sister a girl could ever ask for.

Wednesday, 9 September 2009

Rehearsal dinner

Tonight is an outdoor dinner at l'Olivetto for wicked awesome pizza. YUM.

so. my top pizza rankings; disclaimer, I'm no fan of the deep-dish stuff:
1. Pizzeria Sorbillo in Naples (Italy, not Florida)
2. Pizzeria da Michele in Naples
3. The Spot in New Haven, Connecticut
4. Frank Pepe's in New Haven, Connecticut (New Haven--that's right, I said New Haven, not New York City-- has The Trifecta of bestest pizza stateside. notice I say trifecta but list only two...the third gave us sh!tty service so a big pfffffft! to them. a little sleuthing should easily turn up the third, tho.)
5. Pizzeria Bianco in Phoenix, Arizona

Tuesday, 8 September 2009

Lamb's shower today (even though she is stubbornly insisting on calling it a ladies' luncheon to ward off presents. Such an icky term. ) Marmee is leading a cooking class making homemade malloreddus and then we'll all gather at a long table to feast. I get to decorate my heart out. I'll post pictures when we get back stateside.

The significance of the papel picado flags. I know it's a Mexican thing, but in Sardegna they hang garland flags that look nearly identical to this for the town's annual festivals (in honor of the patron saint--in Cabras it's Santa Maria on May 24th, for example). Lamb and I loved these flags when we were little. We'd take pictures of them, try to somehow take a few as souvenirs from our precarious perch on nonna's balcony, and I think it's just generally easy to see how the flags equal happy, festive emotions. I came across these flags on etsy here and ding! the lightbulb went off on how I wanted lamb's shower to look.

San Giovanni, the back courtyard, with the papel picado flags strung across. Hand-written menus. Lamb's-baby-pictures-as-placecards. This chocolate cake.

I hope it's all turning out as pretty in real life as it did in my head. Update: it did! I can't wait to share pictures.

Monday, 7 September 2009

the problem with following San Francisco blogs it makes you miss the place after you move away, especially upon hearing about stuff like this, via EmilyStyle:

I would so be there.

Sunday, 6 September 2009

Corsa degli Scalzi

Today is the corsa degli scalzi, a big celebration in marmee's hometown of Cabras:

In the village of Cabras (West coast of Sardinia), the first Sunday of September visitors can assist to the barefoot run, "corsa degli scalzi", a procession at a run, while the statue of the Saint Salvatore is brought from the village of Cabras to the church Pieve of Saint Mary. The origin of this run are not sure, but the legend says that in 1506, during the barbaric invasions, while men were in charge of defending the coast, women saved the Saint, moving him to the village of Cabras. This event is very famous in the island, either for the barefoot participants dressed with a white tunic or the deep religious devotion of locals.

I had never gotten to see it (I don't count the year I was one) until last year. Lamb and I were awoken to the sound of pealing, I mean peeeeeaaaaaaaling church bells--the kind of pealing they excel at only in Europe, it seems. Getting dressed in silence and then groggily stumbling out the door, we walked bleary-eyed to a point at the edge of town and waited until we saw the mass of white approach:

With her camera Lamb took a movie of the whole thing which is so cool, you can hear them praying and shouting all at once; I'll have to see if I can somehow download that here at some point.

Update: we actually got to see it again yesterday...I'll be posting pictures when we get back home.

Friday, 4 September 2009

Philly layover

We have 8 hours in Philly on our Orlando --Rome flight. I've never been. I'm thinking Liberty Bell, cheesesteak

(I'm a cheesesteak virgin),

and LOVE. Not necessarily in that order.

Image by eisenzahn

leaving on a jet plane

time to blow this popsicle stand.



I am



and so blessed.

can time please stand still so I can take it all in?

Image (I love it!) from vanilla_coquelicot

Wednesday, 2 September 2009

Our road trip*

*Steve would like me to clarify that it was a move, not a trip. 'Scuse me, love. A road trip conjures up images of lots of junk food munchies, scenic stops, and random detours. And while all of those things happened, it had to be tempered by the fact that we had 3 cats, 2 bikes, and 1 enormous cargo carrier with us-- in or (bolted) on our hyundai. We all have a little Sanford & Son in us (right?!)--

and this was ours:

left to right, top to bottom:
1) iconic New Orleans.
2) beignets at Cafe du Monde. One of my favorite moments: sitting at our table & listening to the street performers play
Ashokan Farewell. We did SO much good eating on this trip. At some point I'll have to write a post just on that.
3) back in my home state.
4) our lil' road warriors. the epitome of
5) western sunset
6) in the middle of all the blurriness you can see the Brunes through the pet barrier. This was after he puked but before he went so stir-crazy he blew through the barrier to come sit up front with us.
7) it will probably be a long while before I'm standing below those arches again. That was a sad realization.
8) one last look at our hole in Napa. lotsa memories here.
9) our favorite breakfast place in Phoenix. We rolled into town just in time for it to open, at 6:30. I love it when everything works out like that.
10) somewhere between Arizona and New Mexico

Happy anniversary

31 years ago today my parents were married in this church in Sardegna.

Happy Anniversary you guys.

Tuesday, 1 September 2009

a long-overdue review

of my 2009 resolutions.
  1. Eliminate our debt. done! I am so proud of us.
  2. Go to Africa. flights are booked, vaccinations gotten, no turning back now.
  3. Exercise at least 4x/week-- yoga, running, or pilates. got off to a rough start at the beginning of the year, but this got boatloads better in spring and summer. Even if it meant getting up at 4:45 am for a while there.
  4. Stop cursing. mmmmm, no...not so much. Need to work on this. But maybe the resolution should have been to curse less, not stop altogether.
  5. Blog more. yup.
  6. Plan meals each week, including 1x/week grocery shopping rather than 5 or 6. I still suck at this. it's the grocery shopping part that blows. I have a new plan to try in Florida that hopefully will be more successful.
  7. Join a CSA this summer for our fruits and veggies. No, but only because the CSAs wanted a year commitment and we were moving. It's gonna happen in Florida.
  8. Make a big deal out of my family and friends' birthdays, since I know how great it feels to have a big deal made out of mine. Maybe a 50% fail rate here. It's a lot easier making a big to-do of the birthday when the person is nearby, of course. When there's a mailing that needs to be done in advance I fall short. Again, I need to get better at planning ahead.
  9. Throw the best-ever bridal shower for my sister. it's in the works
  10. Give my husband a 10-second kiss every day. admittedly sometimes this doesn't happen. I'm going to go smooch on him right now.
  11. Be more informed about current events (don't live in a bubble). Still sorely lacking in this. I want to subscribe to the Sunday NY Times when we move back home. Not sure if that will help but I love the romantic idea of opening the front door to a newspaper on the stoop.
  12. Go for a picnic at the Palace of Fine Arts (it was undergoing renovation when we were living in SF). what an awesome day that was.
  13. Make handmade cards. yes for husband and close family. or the "sorry for getting you drunk" card I made for a friend last March. other lovies get pretty letterpress cards that I can't resist buying.
  14. Plan a wonderful Valentine's Day. For the first time in years Steve has off the 14th. it was wonderful, in our typically off-kilter way. pillow fights and po-boys.
  15. Just roll with it. Wabi sabi. Life is imperfect. Getting better. Always a work in progress.