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Salvation From The Cold

Posted by on Mar 2, 2015 in Travel | 2 comments

It’s March and yet we’ve got a few inches of snow again yesterday, enough to delay school openings and cause a bit of a mess. I tried not to complain about this winter but it’s hard not to. I want to be hopeful but it’s challenging when you see yet another snowflake icon in your 10-day forecast.

One of the things that keeps me hopeful these days is summer vacation. I cannot wait to escape here and just let the hours stand still. So let the countdown begin…four more months to go and off to the land of blue skies and water.

Have a great week, dear friends!




Images via (1), (2), (3)

Just Girls

Posted by on Feb 26, 2015 in Family and friends | 0 comments

New addition to the family. What can I say? I come from a family of girls. I have two girls of my own. And now, additional girls as we welcome two girl cousins…not to mention the other cutie cousin in France named Lucie.

Have a good weekend everyone!




To A Winter That Would Never End

Posted by on Feb 23, 2015 in Family and friends | 0 comments

I thought we’d get away with a milder winter this year considering the deluge of snow we’d gotten in 2014. Usually that’s how it works, a little reprieve after an excess of something. January was quite okay but then came February where we’ve seen cancellations of classes and activities almost every Monday. We’ve reached record lows in temperature in the last few weeks and somehow it just doesn’t seem right as we head from one weather extreme to another. I know most of us attribute it to global warming, a behemoth that we all feel incapable of handling and restraining.

We tried to make the most of the weekend by being outdoors for most of Saturday in the Catskills. The temperature was around seven degrees Fahrenheit but we stuck with skiing despite the snow and blustery winds. It seemed like a lot of people had the same idea as we waited in ski rental lines that snaked around endlessly, taking almost about an hour before we could head out to the slopes.

The best part of the weekend for the girls was having their favorite French onion soup at one of our favorite restaurant stops when we’re in the Catskills. I was less indulgent and settled for a cheese platter with warm cider. Hope you had a great weekend!

lastchance1 Cheese Ice Sculpture that never melted this weekend



huntermountain3 Sulking Ines

huntermountain4 Design by Chiara



ripvanwinkle Can’t be in the Catskills and not see signs of Rip van Winkle

Poignant Still Alice

Posted by on Feb 19, 2015 in Lifestyle | 0 comments

Over the weekend, I saw the movie Still Alice with Julianne Moore as the main character. I knew a little about the movie before I saw it, that it was primarily about a protagonist who was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s Disease at an abnormally young age (50 years old) and how she goes on with her life as she tries to live with the disease.

I liked how simple and raw the movie’s backdrop is, allowing for the audience to truly focus on such a complicated issue of deteriorating mind and body and how it affects the very mundane aspects of one’s life as well as familial relationships. For an Alzheimer’s patient, particularly during the early onset of the disease, a lot of embarrassment and discomfort are felt when he/she cannot remember simple things like how to get back home or what a friend’s name is. Often, the person with Alzheimer is just treated as someone who’s flighty or forgetful.

For me, the most touching moment was when Julianne Moore’s character, Alice, spoke in front of an Alzheimer’s support group where she said this….“My yesterdays are disappearing, and my tomorrows are uncertain, so what do I live for? I live for each day. I live in the moment. Sometime tomorrow soon, I’ll forget that I stood before you and gave this speech. But just because I’ll forget it some tomorrow doesn’t mean that I didn’t live every second of it today. I will forget today, but that doesn’t mean that today didn’t matter.”

So if you are looking to see a movie for this Oscar weekend, I highly recommend seeing Still Alice for the great acting and a serious topic that is rarely dealt with in film.




Images via (1), (2), (3)

V-Day and a Birthday Party

Posted by on Feb 16, 2015 in Family and friends | 0 comments

Though it snowed on Valentine’s Day and the temperatures hover around single digit this weekend, we managed to get a few things done. The girls went to a Father-Daughter Dance at school on Friday night. On Saturday, we had a quiet Valentine’s Dinner at home where I prepared an Irish Lamb Stew, followed by a delicious macaron cakes and flourless chocolate pastry from Le Petit Parisien in Montclair.

On Sunday, we celebrated Chiara’s birthday with her closest friends at a local wood-fired pizza place. She did not want a big birthday party anymore. As much as I dreaded the thought of driving six girls in my car while Richard had three more, I was pleasantly surprised with how well-behaved the girls were. Yes, the girls asked me to blast the radio a few times and there were a few shenanigans in the back of the car. But overall, the girls were pretty good. Richard and I managed to even have a pretty interesting and rather mature conversation with them. I suppose as a parent it is always a bit comforting to know that your child has chosen a good set of friends to be around.

Hope you had lovely weekend!

vday note A little Valentine’s Day note from Chiara