Reading Challenge: the First Quarter

As of the end of March, I’ve read my way through the first quarter of the 2021 Goodreads reading challenge, and am actually a few books ahead right now. This is a challenge I’ve taken part in since 2015. You set your own goal for how many books you want to read each year. WhenContinue reading “Reading Challenge: the First Quarter”

Traveling Like a Local

I was watching a Rick Steves travel show on television, and he said something that’s one of his travel mantras — that the most memorable experiences come from meeting local residents. Strangely, my initial reaction was that I’d never have the guts to approach someone like that. I say “strangely,” because it took me onlyContinue reading “Traveling Like a Local”

My Piccioli Ancestors

I wrote recently about my paternal grandfather and his Italian immigrant parents. There is so much more I could say about their family. But today I want to tell a different story from my family’s past. This one comes from my paternal grandmother’s childhood. That’s the Piccioli family to the right, minus two older brothers.Continue reading “My Piccioli Ancestors”

On Escaping to the Country

Lately I’ve been getting into the BBC series Escape to the Country. Have you seen it? The host introduces a couple who are living in or near a city but now want to move to the British countryside. The family has a county or area in mind, and describes the kind of place they’re lookingContinue reading “On Escaping to the Country”

My Assisi Heritage

I was trying to come up with a blog post today for the #BlogLikeCrazy challenge, and I realized that what I’d really like to do is expand what I posted earlier today, for Photo Friday. I posted a photograph of my great grandparents Francesco and Maria Petrini, who both died on October 9, 1918, inContinue reading “My Assisi Heritage”

Friday Five: Old School

I don’t officially participate in Friday Five, a blog prompt that provides a list each week of five questions on one theme. But every now and then I hear about the questions and find them interesting. This is one of those times! These questions were the prompt for a few weeks ago. The topic: ThingsContinue reading “Friday Five: Old School”

Photo Friday: Green Eyes

I just learned that today is Global Cat Day. So here is a global cat. Specifically, it’s an Italian cat. I was with a small group that was having a cooking lesson with a Tuscan chef, in her lovely old villa in the hills around Florence. After we finished making the meal, we stepped outsideContinue reading “Photo Friday: Green Eyes”

Let’s Drink to St. Francis

Today is both the Feast Day of St. Francis of Assisi and National Vodka Day. Because after a long day of preaching to birds, taming wolves, and being generally selfless, you really need to throw back a few shots of Absolut. My Petrini ancestors came from Assisi, so I have a special fondness for thatContinue reading “Let’s Drink to St. Francis”

Photo Friday: Along the Arno

When in doubt, look to Italy. If that’s not my motto, well, it should be. I was stumped for a photo to post today, so once again I’m turning to my favorite country, the country of my ancestors. This is from Florence, which, in addition to being in my favorite country, is pretty much myContinue reading “Photo Friday: Along the Arno”