Thursday, 27 December 2012

Christmas capers...

Hello folks!

Whether you're spending the festive season in the UK, Italy or somewhere else in the world, I trust you're enjoying yourself, and most importantly, eating LOTS. I certainly am, here at my parents' home in the Midlands.

I spent Christmas day and Boxing day eating, drinking, eating, playing silly board games and eating a bit more. Part of me was eager to see what an actual Italian Christmas day was like, but I've got to be honest... I don't think I would have been happy without the traditional roast dinner and Christmas pudding :D 

Here are a few Christmas snaps for you, taken both in the run up to Christmas (in Italy) and Christmas day here in England.Enjoy!

Is this an Italian or English tree? Clue: look out for the panettone at  the bottom... ;D

An Italian nativity

My terrible wonderful students, playing games

The nativity at the nursery school

Christmas day wine...mmm


terrific trifle

and perfect pudding

Boxing day capers

Hope you've all had a good one!

Wednesday, 19 December 2012


As I'm heading home on Friday to spend Christmas with my family in the UK, I shall be missing out on the Italian Christmas day food fest. Instead of panettone I'll be eating Christmas pudding. Instead of pasta, roast potatoes. Instead of a post-feast coffee...well, nothing actually.

So last night, to make sure I had a little taste of something that the Italians (at least, the southern Italians) eat for their Christmas lunch, I enjoyed a nice bowl of brodo and tortellini. Brodo, or broth, is often served with these lovely little pasta parcels on Christmas day. It was warming, filling and yummy.

But although it was tasty, I'm still looking forward to my traditional turkey, parsnips and roast potatoes.... bring on the British food feast!

Tuesday, 18 December 2012

Christmas gifts...

In case you didn't know, I have a rather small family. No brothers or sisters. A limited number of cousins.

Italian families often have the tendency to be rather large. A few brothers here, 8 or 9 nieces there, about 20 or so aunts and uncles. And my boyfriend's family is no exception.

An 'intimate' family gathering of just the closest members of his family consists of at least 20 people. So you can't even imagine what anything along the lines of an 'extended' family gathering might be like. They all have to remember one name of one English girl. I on the other hand have to remember a great number of names, many of which I forget immediately after hearing them. It can get somewhat confusing/embarrassing.

Large families also mean large numbers of Christmas presents. On Saturday, myself and my man hit the shops and engaged in a spot of power purchasing. By this, I mean that we were quick, efficient and stuck to our budget. Ish. Even though we may have spent a little too much time/money in the toy shop looking at awesome board games and pressing the buttons on all sorts of...anyway. This power purchasing was necessary due to the sheer amount of presents we had to get. This is just a small portion of what we bought:

I've got to say though, that it was a lot of fun. Whizzing around the toy store, picking up monster trucks and baby rattles was rather enjoyable, and something I'm not accustomed to doing due to said small sized family. And afterwards, we rewarded ourselves with large amounts of pizza. A very successful evening indeed.

Although now I'm starting to understand why Italians almost always get their gifts wrapped at the store. The idea of wrapping presents always appeals to me, but I always end up in a sellotaped mess...

How's your Christmas shopping going?? :)

Monday, 17 December 2012

Cosy coats...part due!

In my last post, I was going on about puffa jackets and Michelin men and things like that.

Now however, I'm going to move away from the warm, practical and stylish, to the warm, not so practical and stylish.

Behold, a very much appreciated Christmas gift that I recently received:

Coat: Benetton

Good grief I love yellow. And this is the perfect kind of toned down, understated, mustard yellow that's perfect for winter. Suggestions of colours that may look good with it are very welcome!

Happy Monday!

Friday, 14 December 2012

Cosy coats...part uno!

Seeing as it has been pretty darn chilly here recently, I decided to take the plunge and get myself a nice new coat. I'd had my old coat for about 6 years, so it really was time for a change.

There's a real trend for puffa coats (is that what you call them?!) here, and they always look so lovely and warm, despite the possible Michelin man effect. I shopped around a bit though and found myself this nice, fitted puffa coat. What do you think? And yes, it's very warm indeed!

It's made by new Italian brand Male Female (no I hadn't heard of them either). Their site should be up and running soon:

Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, 12 December 2012

Midweek mini blog!

A little midweek mini blog for you!

I hope you're all having a smashing week so far. It's pretty chilly here in southern Italy, so to warm my cockles (I think that's the first time I've ever used that expression..) I've been replacing my beloved gelato with something equally as yummy but a little hotter! Behold, the Italian hot chocolate:

Yes, it is a little like a chocolate soup, but that's definitely not a bad thing.

My next article for A Prettier Place blog has also been published, so make sure you check it out here.

That's all for now folks. Watch out for my next post, as it may well contain pictures of my very pretty new coat! Remember how I'm a fan of yellow....? ;)

Tuesday, 11 December 2012

A Puglia Christening

This weekend I had the chance to experience a real Puglia christening.

After the ceremony at one of the (many) local churches, myself and my boyfriend's family headed to a lovely little restaurant in my town for some lunch. I say some lunch. Actually it was probably one of the biggest lunches I have ever had. In my entire life.I almost had to be rolled out of the restaurant.

The food was great, as was the wine and the company. We spent a total of 4 hours eating, drinking and generally being quite merry. Here are a few pics for you!

Yes, the dessert photos are bigger..ahem...

The beautiful boy :)

 As you can see, the food was delicious. Excessive? Yes. But definitely delicious. I've yet to experience a one, but I've heard that this was nothing compared to a traditional southern Italian wedding...

Sunday, 9 December 2012

Time to reflect...

One of my favourite phrases is: Life's too short. Do what you enjoy doing. Live your life in the best way possible, because you only get one. 

I also like to proclaim, quite often, that happiness is more important than money. And I think this video explains it much better than I ever could. Go on, watch it!

And then answer this one very important question: What do you desire?

 Buona Domenica!

Yes, I always desire coffee...