Archive for August, 2007

Dear Readers:

I just wanted to let you all know that I am OK….I had a major disaster in my family this past week. I am trying to take care of everything and I will be back soon to blog about the horrific nightmare that my we have had to deal with. Check back on Saturday or Sunday…I’m sorry.

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A Really Bad Day…

I just wanted to let my readers know, that I haven’t fallen off the earth. We had a very bizarre and unexpected traumatic event happen on Friday, so I’m taking so time to myself….thanks for thinking of me.

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The Cats that Changed My Life


For those that know me, know that my cats mean the world to me. When I adopted them in 1995 and 1996, I knew they had been sent to me for a reason. They were both strays that found me. Callie my oldest girl, is a striped Calico, who loves to rule the roost. She proclaimed my bedroom as her private sanctuary upon entering my home the first night. My room became her private chamber, to oversee and become safe in. When my second feline friend, Bebe came into my life, Callie had already established her pecking order within the household. So Bebe, had a difficult time finding her own space within my home. Time has passed now and my love for them has grown over the years. They have brought incredible love into my life, even before I met my husband Don. Don knows my love for my cats, and he soon became a cat aficionado as well. He adopted Spaz the yellow Tabby, that resembles Morris from the 9 Lives commercial.

Recently 9 Lives instituted a cat rescue mission to save over a Million shelter cats. Don actually got to see the mobile cat adoption agency yesterday. He called me to say the the 9Lives Rescue Mission Bus was in Kentucky. My heart grew heavy, as I heard the tale of Morris’ Rescue. Turns out Morris became the world’s most famous cat!

The Cat that Started it All

“In 1968, a street-wise orange tabby from a Hinsdale, Illinois shelter was about to be put down when staff noticed the cat had a certain “star quality.” They contacted animal handler Bob Martwick, who adopted him on the spot and named him Morris. The rest, as they say, is history.

He’s asking cat lovers everywhere to join him and his own newly adopted pal Li’l Mo in the mission to find safe, loving homes for 1 million cats. Together they’re determined to make a real difference in the lives of homeless cats everywhere.”

section_lilmo.jpg So now in 2007 we have ‘Lil’ Mo…Morris’s new buddy, and they are on a mission. A mission to save the shelter cat population. Please participate and do all you can. For you may never know the love a cat can bring to your life…..Thanks to all my feline friends out there. 🙂

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Life is full of disappointments….

On our trip to Italy in June, I had dreamed of experiencing the famous hot chocolate that we had heard about in Florence at Rivoire. “Rivoire is perhaps the best Cafe-Bar for people watching in all of Italy. Here, in what is by far the most striking square in Florence, you can watch people from the world over as they view the magnificent sculptures displayed in the Piazza della Signoria.

You can enjoy a light snack, sandwich or cappuccino. Seating is available both indoors and outside. Prices are cheaper if you eat inside; however, the opportunity to watch such a parade of humanity is definitely worth the higher price.

Chocolate seems to be the specialty of the house here, with fresh pastries with smooth chocolate filling, tiny squares of bitter-sweet chocolate wrapped in colored foil, rectangular butter cookies with a thin layer of chocolate icing and a dusting of powdered sugar. A young German couple at the next table treated their toddler to a cup of thick hot chocolate with a huge portion of whipped cream on top.”


So we decided to wait until the day was not so extremely hot to try this delicacy. We made a fatal error, instead of enjoying this extreme delight at a well known establishment, we waited until we where in the medieval village of San Gimignano for the day. The day was very warm and we enjoyed taking in the splendid sights of this hilltop town. We decided to have lunch at a local trattoira. The Trattoria Boboli we were soon seated and we ordered our fare. I enjoyed the local caprese and spaghetti pomodoro, while Don had a grande tagliatella con bolognese. Then I was so wanting to try the famous 4 euro “hot chocolate”, much to our dismay, it did not met our expectations at all! I was sorely disappointed. The “hot chocolate” turned out to be nothing more than a powdered mix, like we have here in the states. Ugh! My hopes and cravings had instantly vanished! My disappointment grew as I tried to manage to keep a straight face and choke down the cup of chocolate that we ordered. Just like that…..no wonderful  hot chocolate.  My dreams vanished….


Now I’m waiting for my revenge…my next trip to Italy! Isn’t life grand?

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As a kid growing up in the 60’s & 70’s, we did not have a lot of luxuries. My dad worked at least 12-13 hours a day and my mom was a stay at home domestic goddess.  We lacked in the luxury department but we never went without food, clothing or love. Growing up in Maine during these times left us “unworldly”, but not unknowledgeable.  My maternal grandmother was the matriarch that lived within the confines of our home, which my parents had purchased from her after my grandfather passed away.  Indeed my grandmother was teacher to all.  She taught many worldly subjects related to life.

It was great to have grandmother around day in and day out. After all what more can a child want? I shared my bedroom with my gram as well as my deepest secrets and emotions.  We were like sisters and had so much in common.  I miss my granmother greatly, but that alone can not bring her back.  She passed way at the age of 96 in 1989.  Her and my grandfather worked hard to raise their children and had next to nothing in their day.  So I considered my self extremely lucky to have gram around as I was growing up.  I have many fond memories of her cooking and teaching me things about food. In fact, some may even classify as “bizarre foods today”.  She loved to cook oatmeal with brown sugar, shredded wheat (softened in water), molasses cookies, liver, pig’s feet, tripe, and other delicacies.  She also sent me to the store to buy her candy, which she would share with me.  Mainly Kit-Kat’s when they first appeared on the shelves in the store. She loved fried potatoes as well.  We had a woodstove in the kitchen and she used to like to take potatoes and slice them thinly and place them on the surface of the hot stove, cooking them until crisp, then coating them in melted butter before eating them.  The kitchen would have a smoky appearance after this culinary adventure, but then who cared?

She also kept a pint of cream on hand to have with fresh berries or on her oatmeal.  She cooked everything in lard, salt-pork and ate real butter. Drank plenty of tea and coffee, and sometimes had a pinch of brandy when she had a cold.  When we were sick, she would prepare us molasses and ginger to swallow…..yuck!  Or Castor Oil, for whatever else ailed us.  Imagine that!

My gram was from the old French/Irish school of thought.  Work hard and things will be ok.   She planted her own garden behind the house and harvested her own veggies. This day and age, this is almost unheard of.  She canned her food, made homemade jam, and baked her own bread.  A much simpler life…the way it used to be….the way it should be.  I miss her food, stories and her life.  I am grateful for all that she gave me.

Cabin in the woods

A simpler life…. 

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C’est Magnifique

Life is a challenge and sometimes we are tested to the limits. This week has proved to be so, without question.

Have you ever thought of what life would consist of if you could have an out of “life” experience? As human being we are constantly being tested….tested in tolerance, patience, beliefs, and our faith. What if we could leave and forget our obligations? Well I have recently discovered such a place online. Second life is an internet site that one can go to, to escape the harsh realities of life that we know. An alter life that can be accessed online…imagine that? From their website ” Second Life is a 3-D virtual world entirely built and owned by its Residents. Since opening to the public in 2003, it has grown explosively and today is inhabited by a total of 8,571,437 Residents from around the globe.”  Who could have thought?

For me travel is a “second life”, an escape to another world, driven by my imagination and curiosity to explore the unknown. Different cultures, customs, lifestyles, people, food, and history. A chance for self-discovery.  With that said….my bags are packed and I’m ready to leave. What time is the next flight?   🙂


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Ever Present Past

Where does all the time go? Does any one ever wonder why it flies by in a flash?

As I sit here today I wonder what life would be like if I did not have so much on my figurative plate….time goes by so fast but how can we escape that? How can we make up what we miss every moment? Sometimes someone asks me, “well, why did you do that?” or “why did you go there?”….well the answer is….because I can! We are only on this world for a short time and we all need to make the most of the time we have. I guess I can be called a “daydreamer”, my mind often races with thoughts of things I should or can be doing…..rather than what I am doing. When I slow down I wonder why? Well the answer is obvious……I try to take on so much in my life, that sometimes I feel trapped. So I begin to seek out an escape. This is why I love to travel…….the great escape!

While the past is never far behind, the future is often knocking on our doorstep. I choose to live my life like no other. Always planning the next destination. Whether it be in my backyard or a glamorous European country. My mind is always trying to figure out another journey and how I can make it happen. Today I am thinking about the Alps….a most wondrous place. The mountains, the alpine meadows with sweet scents of flowers, the sky, and the sun….what more could one ask for?


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