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Archive for April, 2007

A Word about Ice Cream….

Ice Cream should be it’s own food group….I know…afterall it does fall ino the Dairy group…but it needs it’s own group!

Spring is the time of year that most folks crave ice cream…but my craving is year round. In fact I alwasy seek out ice cream no matter what location I find myself in. It comes in many forms:

  • Scoops
  • Sundaes
  • Shakes
  • Malts
  • Freezes
  • Blizzards
  • Splits
  • Cones
  • A la mode
  • Flurries

You get the point! Some of my favorites include the italian gelato, Baskin Robbin’s, No Ben & Jerry’s, Graeters, Cold Stone Creamery, and Edy’s.

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Now after work, I guess I’ll have to make a stop on the way home!  Mmmmmm, now let’s me choose a flavor….chocolate, coffee, cheesecake, black cherry, raspberry, peppermint stick, cookie dough, etc…… 🙂

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idol.jpg Last night I watch as millions of others did as well, the American Idol Gives Back Episode. This show is occasionally something that Don and I watch and sort of get caught up into Idol Mania. For weeks the producers have been indicating a special episode called Idol Gives Back. Last night’s episode was truly powerful indeed. The program raised money for many world wide issues, such as poverty, AIDS, malaria, and illiteracy. I was shocked as I viewed the program. This episode brought tears to my eyes as I watched in silence. We live in a world were we don’t have to witness these excruciatingly painful problems. However, America is not safe from these issues either.

Several years ago, my best friend Kevin died of Aids. He had lived with HIV for several years but succumbed to the disease in the form of pneumonia and Kaposi’s Sarcoma. I thought about his battle last night and how he had to live in such stigma. That was in 1996, today things are not much better for people living with HIV and Aids. There are treatments available, for those who can afford it. But for others like those in Africa, many times there are no options. What breaks my heart is watching the children suffering from this disease. Our county spends so much money of war, but we often don’t take care of our own people. Poverty, hunger, domstic violence, lack of medical insurance, these are all examples of the injustices that we cause to our poplulation. Will this ever end? I hope in my lifetime…..

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I have always loved Vintage Music….the 20’s, 30’s 40’s and some 50’s.

Josephine Baker is no exception….I came across her beloved music a while back, and she changed my life. Her background brings tears to my eyes when I heard of her humble beginnings. In fact this site tells her story.

Another female singer was France’s own Edith Piaf….born on the streets of Paris, left abandoned to fend for herself, she rose to stardom after starting as a street performer. Both of these women lived meager lives and did not know the effects they had on the history of music during their lives. I listen to their music daily and imagine what it would have been like to live in the era of the 20’s and 30’s, like my mother did as a child. One particular song that Josephin Baker sang in the 20’s is one of my favorites “Breezin along with the breeze..” The lyrics and her photo are below:

 

I have been a rover since I was a child,
No one to love or care for me.
Knocked around all over, kinda grew up wild –
My home’s wherever I may be.
Ain’t no someone yearnin’, wonderin’ where I be;
I’m gone, but no one’s missin’ me;
Ain’t no light a-burnin’ ev’ry night for me;
I’m like a bird that’s flyin’ free.

(Melody:)
I’m just breezin’ along with the breeze,
Trailin’ the rails, roamin’ the seas.

Like the birdies that sing in the trees,
Pleasin’ to live, livin’ to please.

(Bridge:)
The sky is the only roof I have over my head;
And when I’m weary, Mother Nature makes my bed.

I’m just goin’ along as I please,
Breezin’ along with the breeze.

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Cats are my favorite creatures! Yeah, I know….some people are not partial to pets, espcially friendly felines of all shapes and sizes. Whereever I go I always seek out cats of the tend to seek out me.  Strays ones know where to find their next meal…usually on my doorstep. In fact for the past two years I had adpoted a huge tomcat name that I call “Yellow”.  He stayed around for two years and befriended me while I was outside washing my car, or doing yard work. He was always there to greet me when I came home from work.  This past December, while I was recuperating from  pneumonia, I laid on my porch and waited for me to appear with food for him.  I did manage to get hime fed; however, shortly after my recovery he disappeared…I looked for him for weeks. Yellow was a great compnaion at a distance. I would sit back and watch me from afar. He eventually set back his free spirit enough to let me hold him on occasion.  I miss my little buddy….I hope he found a safe haven to live out his days in peace with a full belly.  At least I can hope this for him.  This is a tribute to some of my favorite gatti!

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Another Monday is upon us……

Tonight will be another episode of Bizarre Foods and Culture Shock on the Travel Channel. I wonder what culinary absurdities will follow in tonight’s episodes.  One can only use their imagination!  Will it be rodents, bugs, intestines or other body parts tonight? I can honetly admit to being a “Travel Channel” addict along with my fetish for the Food Network.

Well the weather here has finally turned WARM. Saturday and Sunday were in the 60’s-70’s….Yeah I know a heat wave…..not! But, just right! I completed the long list of yeard work….raking, sweeping, and cleaning up the yard after winter’s wrath.  Now all I have left ot do is wash the outside windows to rid them of the winter’s dirt and grime accumulation. After all that yeard work I was famished so inside I went to create a huge pot of italian bolognese sauce.  I cooked up some angel hair pasta and enjoyed my dinner. After a long day outside I had no trouble falling asleep with the window open to the fresh air breezing into my bedroom.  Only 63 more days til we return to Italy once more!

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When one has a bad day my cyber friends always come through….my husband does too! But cyber friends in blog world are the best. Yesterday was my deceased Dad’s Birthday…it was indeed a difficult day for me, but I received some great messages and many eamils from friends that read my blog. Thanks to my Italian friend Cyndi….she made my day! I read her Italian Blog everyday, and would love to meet her and her husband “The Italian” one day. Perhaps wehn we go to Itlay in June we can meet for lunch or somehting! Thanks to all my cyber friends for all the cyber “love” and support you send! You made a difficult day better for me! Ciao!

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Happy Birthday to my Dad…..

Dear Dad,

Happy Birthday Dad. Twenty-nine years have passed since you left this earth. Today is your 73rd Birthday and I will never forget the time we spent together. Although you left us way to soon, I don’t regret the times we had and the love the you shared with all of us. Somedays it feels like you never left, but there are other days when it seems like a lifetime since I have seen you.

Today is another day that I am constantly reminded of you. You are in my heart and in my prayers every night. I still remember like it was yesterday, you tucking me into my bed each night and kissing me before I dozed off to sleep. I know I will see you again, but time does not ever let me forget about you and all you did for your family. I am so proud to have had you as my Dad. I know you have missed a lot of my life. But I have felt your presence with me everyday. Someday we will be together again, enjoying the things we used to do as a family. Part of me died when you did, but I had to go on.

I just wanted to let you know, that I have never forgot about you on your birthday, holidays or any other day to be exact. You are always close by to me and I know you keep me safe. I love you very much and just wanted to let you how much I love you and have a happy birthday in Heaven. Til we see each other again…..Buon Compleanno!

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Oenophie….

Ok so it sounds like a dirty, disgusting word……hehehehehe but it isn’t! It is a person that likes wine! That is one of my new found tasting pleasures. I happened to stumble upon the Beaujolais varietals from the Languedoc Region of France. The Beaujolais is the right combination of tartness, bitter, sweet, fruity, dryness….just right! Here are some of the labels recently enjoyed! Je suis vin!

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And a fairly decent Merlot from France:

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Well the Travel Channel has started a new show several weeks ago about these 1000 destinations to travel. The couple one the show are not actors/actresses, but a regular couple that travel the world exploring far-away places. What an adventure! I asked myself “If I could travel and see anything I wanted, where would I go?” Well it is not any easy question….because my list continues to grow! Right now it includes:

  • Alaska
  • Brazil
  • Chili
  • Antarctica
  • The Arctic Circle
  • Africa
  • Australia
  • New Zealand
  • Monaco
  • Sicily
  • Amsterdam
  • Austria
  • Sweden
  • Iceland
  • The Greek Isles
  • Fiji
  • Norway
  • Marrakesh
  • Croatia
  • Hungary
  • The Amazon
  • Ecuador
  • Japan
  • Thailand

The list keeps growing……I could go on forever. Perhaps I will quit my career as I know it and and use my skills to write about my culinary adventures as well as photograph my travels! I’ll have to look into this. My career in higher educaiton has served it’s purpose well and it has allowed me to cultivate my travels, but I’m ready to move on to something more adventurous…perhaps travel is my choice! Ciao….see you in the next destination!

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Boun Compleanno il Momma!

Today is my mom’s 72nd birthday…happy birthday to her!  Amy and Emma arrived yesterday before the  storm hit.  Another Nor’easter….this time wind, snow, sleet, and up to 4 inches of rain.  Will Spring ever arrive?

neradar.jpg I hope the weather will clear later today. I have planned a surprise dinner for my mom tonight. I will make homemade pasta and a bolongese sauce for tonight’s dinner along with a Birthday cake! The weather is making is difficult to even think of spring. I have bulbs planted outside that were ready to blossom, but now they are buried in snow and sleet and probably frozen. So myuch for all that work!

This weekend did prove to be too eventful! I went shopping on Saturday with my mom and I treated to her lunch at the Olive Garden…not bad for wishing I was in Italia!!! hehehe, we will be soon enough. Now we are 6 weeks and 5 days away! The countdown has begun.  We even got an invitation to have lunch with one ofr our Slow Travel buddies from Cortona Italy. Wow, we can’t wait to meet her!  Cortona is a great little hilltop town in Itlay. Not far from Florence.

I am trying to streamline my luggage for this years up coming flight. We have been discussing ways to even pack lighter then we already do. I’m not sure what else I can leave at home…but I will have to still bring my feather travel pillow with me….I don’t leave home without it.  It is not worth missing sleep over.  Where-ever I go my pillow must follow! hehehe   Ciao for now. we are under hurrican force winds right now with drivng rain, snow, and sleet!  So much for spring in Maine….we’ve gone right to the 2007 hurricane season….  😦

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