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Monthly Archives: April 2011

What I used to believe in…..

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I used to believe in magic. Everything in my little girl mind was made of it, dripped it, infected me with it. I remember being 5 years old and diving right into a cartoon reality, right next to Bugs Bunny and the Smurfs. I truly believed I lived in their world for the duration of the show. I was so involved mentally in what I was watching that it was as if it were all around me, their two dimensional world of sound effects and impossible physical manuevers. It was, well, awesome. This ability wasn’t limited to the silliness of cartoons, no. I also recall deep, paralyzing fear as I watched Nightmare on Elm Street thinking, “If I even BLINK, Freddie will see me…ssshhhhhhhhh….”. There was one evening in particular when I remember not wanting to be seen as I enjoyed my programming so I piled all of my little stuffed friends on every available inch of the black recliner I was to sit in, leaving a me-sized hole in the center. I climbed in my hole backwards, nestling my little tushy into the chair, surrounding my self with the courage of fluffy bunnies and dolls. Just to be sure I wasn’t seen, I carried with me a large bear to set before my hole after I climbed in. To look at that scene I might have appeared to be just another little inanimate face amongst them all.

There was magic everywhere, not least of all in nature. I remember the trees and how they looked to me to be moving themselves, not being moved by the wind. They seemed alive, communicative even. They wanted me around and I loved being there. I saw fairies out the corner of my eye, clouds with personal messages for me, birds singing the songs I had in my head. It was all so amazing. Life. Nature still has a way with me. It’s why my most dear wish is to have a bit of land to call my own. I won’t have it forever as nothing can rightly be called mine that is of the earth but to have a little spot to sit on while I’m here would make me a very happy woman. Plant a tree on that spot and I’d be in heaven.

I believed in good and evil, witches both good and bad, vampires, dragons, angels, fairy godmothers, and the impossible. I miss being a little girl and I’m so lucky to have my own baby girl to guide through enchanted forests, protect against villains, and build castles for. Helping her keep her belief in the magical alive.

Make a top ten list of favorite things to do you haven’t done in over a year Post-A-Day Topic 107

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Oh MAN there are a lot of things I haven’t done (that I love doing) in over a year! Mostly due to my mommy status but also because I’m living in a foreign country and still don’t have the confidence to get around and get out there like I do when I’m home. Ok top 10:

1. Go to a concert-I love live music and really there are a lots of music genres that are kid friendly enough to take the whole family. I can totally do this, I just need to find the music…and get a driver’s licence. Which brings me to number two…

2. Drive-I used to love driving. I would go for long drives to the lake, mountains, or just around town. Here in Italy, I don’t drive. I never learned to drive a stick-shift and learning in this crazy environment has proven pretty difficult for me. Automatics are just not that common here. In fact, I have yet to see one although I’m told they exist. Italians are crazy drivers, very aggressive and uncaring of how the laws state you should actually drive. The more time that goes by, the harder it will be for me. As it is, more than 2 years have passed and I’ve only taken a short trip around the block. In America I drove across states, through blizzards, deserts, mountains, everything. Here I have a hard time turning left. Pfft.

3. Eat Indian food-Italian food is great but when it’s all there is, you get used to it. In the bigger Italian cities like Rome, for example, you can find all kinds of awesome ethnic fare but here in Pescara, it’s just not happening. Indian food is a favorite of mine and I miss it quite a bit.

4. Fit into my size 6 jeans-I WILL get into you jeans, Oh yes, I will wear you again!

5. Drink a mojito on a sweltering Italian Summer evening-How I skipped this last Summer is impossible for me to answer. I was just too busy coraling my youngster I guess. I’ll just have to have a double this time 😉

6. Ride on a boat-It’s been AGES since I was on  boat. The last time was in the Summer of 2006. I have a thing for bodies of water so of course floating on one is a great way for me to spend a day….or 10

7. Go fishing-it’s not really the fishing part I like so much, although I’m a GREAT fisher(wo)man, but more the whole day spent outside with a picnic lunch and drinks in a cooler, ahhhhhhhhh

8. Fly-I actually hate flying, I just like going places. I need a vacation!

9. Drink a proper chocolate malt milkshake-mmmmmmmm milk shake. Pfffft what do Italians know about milkshakes?? Nothing! That’s what!

10. Sleep in-Wait….What is that? Did I just type that?? I think I know that term but I’m not real sure……

How My Daughter Ends Up in All My Posts

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My WorldMy husband pointed out to me that I manage to mention my baby girl in every blog I post. It doesn’t matter if the topic is the devil in America or lucid dreaming, if I’m finding my relation to any topic I am finding hers as well. She’s my favorite part of me, the part I cherish most and if I have thoughts on any topic my foremost concern is, “how does this affect my little stinker?” I suppose this can become tiresome for you as a reader. I’m guessing most mommy’s do this but perhaps I’m a bit overzealous when it comes to parent-child togetherness. I am convinced that I am the only one who can properly care for her. Crazy, right? I’ve spent countless hours researching the best nutrition, games, room temperature, language learning techniques, discipline, shoe construction, sleepwear, vaccine spacing, car seat placement, the list is endless-trust me. I also practice toddler Heimlich moves and cpr on Pookie, her teddy bear.

She’s simply everything to me. My whole life. My best friend. I’m not sure what that says about me that my best friend hasn’t even celebrated 2 years on the planet but it’s true. She’s absolutely perfect. I know, it’s what all parents say so if you are one, you’ll know what I’m talking about. It still blows my mind that this little person came to life in my belly. Too weird. The whole process is out of this world. Well, I guess not. In fact, it’s the very basis of our world. Birth. In any case, she’s the coolest. But I promise to make an effort to keep the subject of the post and refrain from boring you with interjections of  “mommy thoughts” but I’m sure they’ll creep in every now and again, it can’t be helped.


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Do you ever have the feeling you’re not at all where you should be? If it weren’t for the perfection of my little monkey I would be thinking I’d taken a wrong turn in Albuquerque. I think it has a lot to do with trying to feel at home in another country. I don’t know how so many people are able to do it. Able to find their place among all the…foreigness. Sometimes I wish I could just pack up and head home, tonight is one of those times. It’s not that I’m unable to be away from my family and friends. That part does get difficult but it’s more about just being home. Nowhere outside of America feels quite like home to me. I’ve never really been too patriotic, not caring much for politics but I do know that I miss the way the sky looks in Western America, how the feeling of infancy as a country brought a sense that everything was possible. Here, the sun doesn’t hit the leaves in the same way, the birds’ song-unusual. Here it’s just…different. I wasn’t raised here, consequently I have no memories here or at least very few. Having given birth to my baby here helped a lot with my feelings of displacement. Wherever she is, there is love. But every now and again I want to have her with me where I grew up, where I remember celebrating holidays with the people who know me best. My family. My friends. I know that years will pass and wherever I am it will feel more and more like home. In fact, most days I don’t even think about it. It’s just sometimes, once in a blue moon, I’m homesick.

Lunedi’ di Pasqua

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Italians celebrate the Monday after Easter with almost more enthusiasm than Easter itself. Also called Pasquetta, the Monday of Easter (Lunedi di Pasqua) is often a more relaxed sort of gathering and generally held outside. I could’ve completely foregone Sunday lunch at the packed little restaurant we ended up eating at with 12 members of my husband’s family. The food was overpriced and the service was incredibly slow. How they planned to serve a full house with only two waiters in any kind of orderly fashion is beyond me. The entire time we spent there was more of a hassle than a pleasure so after 3 hours of being there and still not having been served our entire meal, we left. My little girl can handle restaurants pretty well but that amount of time is really pushing the limits of a toddler’s patience.

I woke up today (Pasquetta) hoping for good times and that’s exactly what I got. And even though the day wasn’t sunny, I was. We’d planned to go to a lake about and hour away for a picnic and we were almost rained out but we were determined to get there and at least check out the area before calling the whole thing off. Turned out to be one of the best times I’ve had in months. There were a few sprinkles when we first arrived but not enough to keep us in the car. We unpacked our lunch and games and joined the other people who had decided to brave the conditions in the name of springtime fun. After eating we went on a long walk through the woods on a path made of slim wooden planks. It twisted its way through the trees and along a serene blue-green lake that mirrored the opposite shore beautifully. Oh my little one nearly lost her mind with excitement, a smile wide as her little face would stretch plastered in place the entire time. She danced, she sang, she called back to the frogs. She was in heaven. Nature has a way of affecting most people in a very meaningful way. I, myself, find a peacefulness not duplicated anywhere else when I’m in a natural setting. The path we took led to clearing in the forest where we found a few large groups of people in their 20’s and 30’s, cooking, playing soccer and listening to loud music. Perfect! We set up shop there for awhile, blowing bubbles and running in circles after my little monkey. By this time the rain had stopped completely and we were just soaking up the atmosphere. Afterwards we went to the lake’s shore where we threw a few pinecones and chased down other little kids my baby wanted to give kisses to. She’s a sucker for the youngsters.

On the way home she slept and the rest of us talked about what a perfect day it was. I’ll always remember today, the look on my baby’s face as she ran free in the wilderness, the tranquility. It was lovely. I want to go back as soon as we can.

What Percentage of Americans Believe in the Devil? Post-A-Day Topic 2011

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“Topic #107:

According to a Gallup Poll, nearly 70% of Americans believe in the Devil.  Do you? Why or why not? Why do you think 70% of Americans believe as they do on this issue? Do you think this number is higher or lower than other countries in the world? Why? Do you think the devil is behind the choice of this topic?” 

Interesting choice for a topic on Easter Sunday WordPress. I thought for sure the topic suggestion would be something about the origins of the Easter Bunny or the credibility of a human resurrection but no. Ok, Satan it is.  First of all, I don’t trust polls. No one came knocking on the doors of anyone I know asking if they believed in the devil so it can’t be entirely accurate. Polling the general public doesn’t necessarily represent all Americans’ beliefs but this is all beside the point. That point being Lucifer. I, sure as hell, believe. Although my belief lies not in a Ruler of All That is Dark but more in the idea of evil. I’ve experienced intensely deep penetrating fear that I feel can only come from devilry. For a period in my life I was overly interested in books of the non-fiction horror genre-The Amityville Horror, Devil in Connecticut, and Jay’s Journal to name a few. Jesus, just writing out their names has given me a twinge of apprehension. I truly believe that seriously scary stuff has happened to people. Stuff they couldn’t explain by any other means but to call it evil. My acceptance of a dark side is why I’d NEVER touch a Ouija board. Never…ever….ever. Who knows what’s just lurking around us waiting to come through the first door that’s opened, usually by some stupid highschool kid.

As far as what I think about how many Americans believe in the devil versus other countries, I really don’t know. I think 70% is pretty high actually. I think it’s a lot easier for people to believe in the devil than in God. Evil in the world is much more recognizable, it gets more attention. A vicious murder gets the front page, a miraculous recovery is somewhere near the back. It’s as if we expect things to be good, like that’s the way things SHOULD be. For me, things just are. There is no should or shouldn’t. That’s why you should be grateful when things are running smoothly. It’s a gift. Things get ugly real quick and we get so upset and talk about what’s fair. Well life’s not fair and there’s a struggle going on and whether it’s between God and Satan or simply good and evil, I don’t know. The cartoons with a devil one shoulder and an angel on the other aren’t so far from the truth of what we go through on a daily basis.

Do I think the devil is behind the choice of this topic? Unless Scott Berkun of The Daily Post at WordPress has started this whole post-a-day challenge for the sole reason of positioning this topic 107 topics into it just to get everyone to write about the devil in an attempt to give it power, no, I don’t think the devil is behind the choice of this topic. The devil’s internet connection probably isn’t strong enough to keep up with what’s going on at WordPress everyday anyway.

Forget 2012, When Do You Think The World Will End? Post-A-Day 2011

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Who knows? I know that MY world will end when I die. Now for those who believe in reincarnation that can be tricky. The world as you know it ends but then you’re right back in a womb ready to be born into a whole new life, beginning your world view all over again. Or perhaps your beliefs have something to do with taking up space in heaven for awhile, living in a paradise of biblical dimensions, before choosing which life you’d like to live and what lessons you want from that lifetime. Either way, your world continues infinitely.

I don’t subscribe to the idea that the world will end in December 2012. The ones who do are basing it on interpretations of vague prophecy or a thousands year old Mayan calendar which has been proven to mark the end of their calendar keeping cycle of 3000 years. Exactly how we end our cycle every 12 months, also in December. If they were still around they’d simply start over just like we do every New Year’s Day. Nothing too mystical about that. Any other debate you might want to have can be countered here by Neil deGrasse Tyson-I seriously love this guy. Smart AND funny…ahhh DREAMY!

So with all the 2012 stuff out-of-the-way, when do I really think the world will end? I don’t think it’ll be in my lifetime (the one I’m currently living). I would love to see the world-as-I-know-it end. Obviously for the better. Or maybe take a New Age turn. Like suddenly everyone is opened to a world of pure knowledge and ability, able to use our maximum brain capacity with the outcome being increased aptitude in telepathy, ESP, MAGIC! Oh I’d love for some magic to come into my life. To know that there really is a powerful energy out there working through us, making things happen.

Whatever causes our end, I believe there will in fact BE an end. I mean, the dinosaurs were here for millions of years. Millions. You’d think after that long, they would have been here to stay. Then POOF they’re gone. Humans? A couple hundred thousand years. NOTHING compared to the prehistoric timeline. My point is that we can become extinct tomorrow or in a billion years from now, but chances are, it’ll happen. One thing that I think will remain is the planet itself. So in the end, it’s not the end of the world, just the end of us.

Post-A-Week Photo Challenge Topic: One

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Heron in Florida

Heron in Florida

I’m going to be honest here and say that every photo I’ve submitted to the photo challenge had been taken months, sometimes years, ago. I use this particular challenge when I’m not feeling up to writing. It’s like my “pass” on blogging but I’m still creating  a post. From now on I promise to make more of an effort in taking a good and recent photo. My apologies for not taking this more seriously. hopefully you’ve enjoyed the photos anyway. Next week I’ll try to blow your socks off to make up for it. Deal? Alrighty then.

Why So…Grey? Post-A-Day 2011

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Today I saw the most dismal pair of people on the planet. They were the epitome of drab. I’d call them a couple but that would imply some sort of togetherness, camaraderie and there was nothing so meaningful in the appearance of these two. Let me say here that today was one of those bright Spring days full of birds song and budding flowers. The sun was feeling warm and the breeze from the sea was perfect. It was a flawless morning. Joyful simply for the life buzzing all about. I was thinking of the summer months to come, images of fresh coconut just sinking in when I was suddenly faced with these two awful figures. They literally stopped me in my tracks. Amongst all the colorful characters of the morning they were so very noticeable and in such a very bad way. They were “older”, perhaps in their 70’s. Even though they were a man and a woman they shared an almost identical haircut-longish on top, tapered at the neck, boyish. Their hair was grey, all of it, both of them, flat grey. They wore matching eyeglasses of the round variety with black frames. Each had on a grey suit which was the very color of their hair, with white button down shirts-the woman in a calf length skirt, the man in slacks. Both wore simple black shoes and walked with the same gait-a slow but steady sort of shuffle. They could’ve been twins, they were even the same height. I’d never seen so much grey in color and demeanor in my entire life. Their mouths were pin-straight lines of boredom. I thought, Christ! What makes people like this happy?? They need a little color in their life! I then gave myself permission to completely  lose my mind when I’m older. Lose the constraints, the inhibitions, the self-consciousness. When I’m 70 I want to wear costume jewelry, insanely big hats, a rainbow of colors and patterns that have no business being together. Other than when you’re 5 when else can you really do this and get away with it? The old have an opportunity to really shove it the younger generations’ faces. They’ve been through so much that social rules on how to express themselves just shouldn’t apply. If I feel the “grey” start creeping into my soul as I age I’ll have to remember my encounter today and grab a feather boa and be off!

Post-A-Day Challenge Gone Awry

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I know I signed up for the challenge to blog every single day and I fully intended on conquering that challenge and making it all the way through 2012 as well (assuming the world doesn’t end by then). But here I am, all geared up to apologize to those of you who follow the little I have to say here on WordPress. So I’m sorry, really I am. I can see you all shifting your interests away from my half hazard attempt to post something every day. My once soaring stats are down in the ditches.

Let me try to explain what’s happened. Life. We had our little trip to Rome where I didn’t have computer access and honestly, anyone who can’t get away for a few days without their computer has a much grander life than little ole’ me. Next came my birthday and blogging just didn’t fit in between glasses of wine and grilled meat. Mmmmmm…MEAT. Oh yeah, then for the rest of the week my husband was on vacation and God bless him, I get NOTHING done when he’s around. We’re usually off somewhere doing things we never get a chance to do together since he works 6 days a week and instead of writing I watched movies and hung out with him. His last day of vacation was Monday. That morning we found out our friend and neighbor had passed away. Devestating news. We live in an apartment building and she was in the one right next to us. We shared walls. We chatted on our balconies while hanging our clothes. We borrowed and loaned sugar. We took walks together. We ate together. I could hear when her baby was crying in the night. I could hear her older son pout about bedtime. She was a very sweet, very simple kind of woman. Didn’t need anything fancy, loved her family, loved to cook and was a wonderful friend. She died of pancreatic cancer, she was only 35.  Her youngest son only 6 months old. So so sad. A tragedy. Hers was the 2nd funeral I’d ever been to. It was standing room only which is a pretty good indicator of what people thought of her. It’s taken a few days for me to regain some control over my emotions. I cried a lot and ate even more. Apparently that’s how I deal with such news. Death makes a lot of people want to call everyone they care for and tell them how much they love them. It was different for me. After the shock, I felt that life was passing me by. I was reminded of how finite our time here is and how much more I want to do. Ironically, my new favorite T.V. show is called Dexter. It’s about a serial killer and it’s awesome. In the last episode there was a man who repeatedly said, “Tick Tick Tick, that’s the sound of your life running out”. And now I can actually hear it.

So wanted to say, I’m back on track now and you can count on me to post every single day from now on. Unless life happens agian….

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