Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Salad Anyone?

Some may not agree with me on this (like my brother for example), but I LOVE fruit in salads!!! I'm such a lover of the sweet/salty combo that any excuse to pair a nice peppery green like arugula, topped with a sweet pear, a few juicy plums and a chopped pistachios makes my mouth start to water. I think salad inventing is so much fun and can be a great way to get extremely creative. The best is during the summer months with the lovely fresh farmers' markets where everything just looks perfect in every shape and form, all of which has to be put into the same bowl for consumption in that very moment. I hate seeing people eat the same drab salad at restaurant: standard veggies (either iceberg or limp romaine with pale tomatoes, dried out cauliflower and broccoli and shriveled cucumbers) accompanied with a raunchy cream dressing. Rather go for the bold and jazz things up a bit with a non-orthodox (I had to, it's Passover) salad and make a wonderful night of it. I know I seem over the top with all this, but you know what it's like to have just indulged the perfect bugger or sandwich consisting of all things delicious? Imagine that same satisfaction but between veggies, fruits and all wonderful condiments imaginable. Sounds like heaven to me.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Hammer Time....

Since living in Italy and adapting to their 24/7 obsession with always looking fabulously dressed in the hottest new fashion trends, there are definitely a few that I just can't seem to wrap my brain around. For example, sagging.... NEVER cute! To me that means ass crack and no one like to see that, even hot Italian women don't have pretty cracks. But there are these GOD-awful pants, which have been around for a while now that I just can't get over. With summer approaching they are EVERYWHERE, back on the racks in all different colors and textures awaiting the mad rush of antsy fashion-crazed Italian women. They're supposed to ride low on the waste, lay baggy in the hips, sag low in the croch and tapper off at the ankle . . . how lovely, no? The first time I laid eyes on these pants I didn't know whether to laugh, cry, or just vomit as I thought that the woman wearing them thought she may have "scored" them at some fun unique vintage shop somewhere as a definite "find" from the '80's. But then I began noticing that they weren't an "unique find" but rather a haunting trend that ever-other woman and mannequin were wearing. The other day while shopping I decided to just try them on and stop talking about how awful they were to see if I could indeed give them a chance. Well, after one look that was a definite NO, rather F NO! The only way however that these pants could look remotely cute (at least from what I've seen) is paired with a simple tight-fit shirt and a nice pair of heels, otherwise (and regardless it still does) it will look like you took a big crap in your pants. And believe you me, no one likes poopy pants.

Friday, March 19, 2010

I Fuori

Nothing is more lovely than a beautiful flowers. There is a particular flower man at the market that has one of the most beautiful stands that I've ever seen. Unfortunately due to the ever-so low number of my bank account, purchasing these wonderful flowers are a bit out of the question, so rather I sit there and gaze for a while, trying to lock them tight into my memory. Beautiful flowers for me being out of reach is truly the biggest tease in the world. Growing up with a mother who made it a lively routine to pick and arrange flowers spreading them around the house, from the small kitchen table, to the bathroom sills, bedrooms and living room, while displaying her unique vase collection, engraved in me the happiness that flowers bring. From the simplest arrangements to the grand bouquets, all guests, visiting family, hell, even my father would comment on how joyful and pleasant the flowers were. So each friday as I pass the lovely flower booth I sit there creating new arrangements for my future nest, always with the hope in living up to my mother's vibrant imagination.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Ciao to St. Pat

I can't believe it! Today, while flipping through my calendar to figure out what I was going to do for St. Patty's day here in Italy, far away from all things Irish, it was brought to my attention that it was YESTERDAY!!!! I wash shocked! How could I have missed it?!? For some reason as someone who never truly celebrated the green day, was somewhat disappointed. It's one of those days that all get together, no matter if your Irish or not and just have a good time. Like watching the river be dyed green in downtown Chicago while dodging people left and right on the way home or eating the crappy green festive cookies and desserts from Costco while throwing it all down with a nice Guinness. Yum, I think my mouth is starting to water.... Anyways, next year- promise to self....NEVER forget St. Patty's day. Regardless how much I truly care about the holiday, it's rather about spending quality time with my friends, in this case, my fellow non-Irish Italian friends.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Oh Timbo's...

Fashion is everything in Italy, although some may take it to different degrees. Even the most nonchalant Italians are proud of the Italian effortless elegance when it comes to dressing for the day and would NEVER be caught dead in nasty old tattered sweatpants . . . ugh never. Now, most people would assume that lovely Italian designers such as Dolce & Gabbana, Versace, Baci Abbracci, Valentino, etc. are those that are worn by most Italians, but little do most people know that TIMBO'S are the hottest thing to be wearing. Who would think that an Italian woman would be wearing the same shoe as 50 Cent or The Game? Obviously they aren't the shoe of choice when it comes to going out with the girls for a night on the town, but for everyday wear, Timberlands are usually seen in one out of three people, men and women. A typical outfit would be slim jeans, a nice leather or Monclear jacket usually worn with an oversized knit scarf, all of which are topped off with a nicely maintained pair of Timberlands. This whole trend of fashionable Timbo's would have never been on my radar in a million years, thank god those J.Lo Timbo stilletto's didn't make it over the pond because let's face it, those were a hot mess from the get go.

Monday, March 15, 2010

Back and Proud

You know you're in Italy when the first odor you smell walking off the plane is a the deep must of parfume, espresso and cigarettes, which for me, says nothing more than "welcome home". I can't believe two and a half weeks went by that fast, can't imagine how I'm going to feel when I'm 90 (I hope I'm not being too optimistic with that number), but there is just something about Italy that I love. Besides my wonderful boo residing here, there is just an elegance to the people; their humor, way of living and eating- all worth adapting. But of course there is the wonderful, unique United States, which I always miss while being here in Italy. As the country of which I grew up in and lived my whole life, I can definatly say that I think as an American and act as an American because that is indeed who I am, a flippin' American. I was utterly shocked while traveling this past trip, primarily going through Paris' airport, bearing my passport in hand with the silver stamp of "United States of America" and national eagle daringly exposed to all, and I guess for all to judge. Holding my passport felt as if I had the swatstica tattooed across my forehead. Many people, between security guards, boarder patrol, and travelers, were literally staring at me, all in far too many ways to decifer what their glares was actually intending. Did I not seem/look/or talk like an American? Was it because I was put together and didn't look like a hot-mess? Was I just "annoying" because that's where I came from? (Or maybe I was taking it all wrong and really had a bugger coming out of my nose.... but I doubt it.) Whatever the reason may had been, holding a United States passport should NEVER be something to be ashamed of. I hate it when people ask me if I say that I'm from Canada or if I make any other avoidance in saying that I'm from the States. It's an awful way to represent one's country and it only carries on the poor representaton that Americans receive while traveling. What does it mean when people say "Oh, wow, you don't seem American?" or "Your not like most American's are you?" WTF!!!! Yes I do and Yes I am!!! Personally I hate stereotypes (a part from stand-up comedy, then they're o.k.), they're offensive and just ignorant. It's like when people say to a well spoken African Americans that they don't seem "black". Just like within all the other countries in the world, people are different amongst each other, with different opinions, different styles, different eating habits, education, etc. Why can't that be the same in the States? The media and Hollywood's propaganda are definitely the major part of this problem of this poor representation of the American people; therefore it's our responsibility to help change the way people judge and perceive us. I mean why can't the rest of the world think of us as Michelle Obama, Oprah, or the fabulous Ellen DeGeners rather than Rush Limbaugh?