Ciao for now blog

July 11, 2017

Seeking a Hotel in Liguria? Try Hotel Monterosa in Chiavari

When most of us think of the Province of Liguria, we think of Cinque Terre, Portofino and other places along the Mediterranean Sea. Liguria province actually spans into the mountains and all the way to France. I chose to live in Chiavari by the sea myself and I love it. Not only is the sea incredible,

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July 3, 2017

Hidden Pieces of Heaven in Liguria

Most Italophiles have heard of Cinque Terre (The Five Lands) near La Spezia. For most American travelers, they do not even realize that Cinque Terre is simply the portal of entry into one of the most beautiful and unknown regions of Italy. It is Liguria, the place I now call home. Liguria is the smallest region in Italy, hugging the coastline of the Mediterranean Sea like a snake. It spans an area that to the east begins near La Spezia and ends at San Remo to the west near the French border.

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June 6, 2017

Life is Short, Eat the Cannoli First

Who knows what tomorrow will bring? I hope and pray every day for peace in our world. I want to believe it can happen. But if you want to see something in particular in Italy or anywhere, Go NOW. See it, experience it. There are tornadoes, floods, earthquakes everywhere. There are volcanos and rising sea waters. There are wars and crazy people who start them. And then there is YOU.

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May 30th, 2017

The Frills and Frustrations of Living in Italy

Living in Italy is a dream shared by millions of people like me. I am fortunate enough to be living my dream right now. Living in Italy is everything I ever dreamed it would be, and more. The land itself is incredibly varied and stunning.

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May 23rd, 2017

Sky Blue Pink

Living by the sea can be so inspirational. Add some spice to the seaside experience by inviting a friend to visit and laughter and memories sweeten the pot.

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May 16th, 2017

An Open Heart

Right now, I am sitting in my quaint, little apartamento in Liguria, wishing there was someone here to share my feelings.  It is another overcast day. The weather fits my feelings.

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April 25th, 2017

Spending, Friending, and Nesting in Liguria

Throughout the past week, I have carried an odd set of emotions around with me. I have a list in my head of all the diverse items I need to live in my little apartamento.  I need wooden spoons and a cutting board. I have 1 spoon now, and no cutting board.

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April 25th, 2017

My Return to The Sea

Chiavari in Liguria has become the home of my heart. I love living in my little one-bedroom apartamento near the sea (il mare). My pint-sized gas range works just fine. My frigerifero (refrigerator) is larger than many in Italy. The bed is huge, if a bit too firm. And, best of all, I can reach the sea with a 2 minute walk. Who could ask for anything more?

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April 11th, 2017

Sorrento, Sonseere and Serious Misdirection

For over a week, I have been spending time with my cousin, Sonseere, in Arpino, Lazio. She is now living in her remodeled apartment in the center of town but is still getting settled. Sunday, we decided to head out of town for the sun and water of Sorrento.

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April 4th, 2017

For Those Who Travel to Eat

There are so many things to love about Italy. There is the art, the architecture, the music, the scenery, the history, the people, the food and the wine. I love them all. But I must admit, my love of food and adult beverages is right near the top.

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March 28th, 2017

Da Sola in Italia

It has been a cool and cloudy week in Chiavari. My health is still not at 100% but, when the sun peeks out from its hiding place behind the clouds, I head for the sea, la passagiata, the promenade.

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March 14th, 2017

Taking a Chance on Poggiobono

Have you ever wanted something so badly but you were afraid to do it? That is how I have felt about studying and learning Italian. I have taken classes in the US and in Italy. I get so far and then, something happens. I get nervous. I start undermining myself. And I want to speak Italian very badly.

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March 7th, 2017

I Am Home

Sono a casa.  I am home. It doesn’t sound like much but it feels so much larger than it sounds. I moved out of my apartment before the end of September, 2016.  I had a grand adventure traveling to Canada and in the United States before leaving for Italy on 10 January 2017. It really was a fabulous experience.

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February 28th, 2017

It’s  a Family Affair

Right now, the sun is beginning to set over the waters of Liguria, my future home as of 4 March. I am traveling  back to Maremma for a few more precious days of language lessons and time with Virginia and her family.  Believe me, I need the lessons, and, frankly I enjoy Virginia and her family very much.

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February 21st, 2017

My Time In Maremma is FANTASTICO

It has been almost 6 weeks since I arrived in Italy with a one-way ticket and too much luggage. For the last two weeks, I have been living La Dolce Vita, the sweet life, in Maremma. My host family lives in this beautiful area of southern Tuscany and, even in February, it is gorgeous country. I awaken to the sound of the local roosters. Normally, I would be swearing at the early rooster alarms but, here, I don’t mind.

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February 14th, 2017

It Has Been a Whirlwind Week in Italy

Wow! I mean WOW! It has been a wonderful week in Italy. Oh, there have been ups and downs. That is to be expected even in my naïve Italian world view. Piano, piano. E’ la vita. That means, Take it slowly. It is the way life works here.

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February 7th, 2017

Arrivaderci Arpino, Lazio

It has now been three weeks since I left the USA to live in Italy. Wow, what a wonderful and yet, challenging, rollercoaster ride.

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January 31st, 2017

From Jet Lag, to Joy to Almost in Jail

It has now been three weeks since I left the USA to live in Italy. Wow, what a wonderful and yet, challenging, rollercoaster ride.

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January 17th, 2017

I Only Come Out At Night

Today is day 7 since I flew away from the United States and I could hardly be happier. It is still hard to believe that I am actually LIVING in ITALY. It still feels like I am only traveling. It is the honeymoon stage.

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January 3rd, 2017

I Am ‘16 Going On ‘17

2016 has passed. So many of my friends are looking backward at their highpoints in the year 2016. One year can change a lifetime. It has for me.

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December 27th, 2016

Christmas Day in Black and White with the Ricci Family

Christmas Day on Rose St. in East St. Paul was always wild and loud. It began each Christmas morning with all of us waking early, running into the living room to see what Santa brought us. Lots of giggling, running, fighting for space to get to the toys while Dad would be trying to stop us until he set up his lights and camera.  Mom would be laughing and scolding Dad (rather loudly as I recall) but we would not care one bit. We wanted our GIFTS.

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December 20th, 2016

Its beginning to look a lot like a Ricci Christmas

Buon Natale! Merry Christmas! It is almost upon us. This Christmas for me will be a time to say farewell to my close family in Minnesota as I leave for Italy via Seattle that evening. I am sure it will be fun. It will be full of Italian food, loud laughter, caffe’ corretto. Coffee with liquor in it, and children shredding wrapping paper as they tear into their gifts.

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December 13th, 2016

I’m Late, I’m Late for a Very Important Date

In 29 days, I will arrive in Italy where I will live for a year, or forever. I have been waiting for this day for many years. And now, I just want to get on that airplane and fly!

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December 6th, 2016

Interlude to the Farewell America Tour

Moving to Italy has been a dream of mine for years and years. When I was 19 years old, I spent nearly a year in Europe. I left Minnesota with a round trip ticket and $200 and stayed that long. I love the entire continent of Europe but Italy holds my heart.

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November 29th, 2016

Farewell America Tour, Part 6

Moving on, that is a difficult thing to do. It is time to leave California behind and I hate to say goodbye. I enjoy visiting L.A., San Diego and San Francisco every time I am here. The climate is appealing, the sightseeing is great and my family and friends are unforgettable.

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November 22nd, 2016

Farewell America Tour, Part 5

For me it was always a treat to spend time at Maureen’s house. Her mamma, Auntie Emma, was always so good to me and her father, Uncle Dick was a musician and a politician among other things. He wasn’t home much but there were instruments everywhere! And when we did see him it was time for music and laughter.

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November 15th, 2016

Farewell America Tour, Part 4

It’s Vegas Baby! Yesterday I hit the road once again. Actually I took to the air to fly to Las Vegas. My cousin Rick was running in the 26.2 mile Rock N Roll Marathon and I wanted to be there.Rick and several family members were there to cheer him on.  Prior to the race Snoop Dog gave a concert to put everyone in the mood.

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November 1st, 2016

Farewell America Tour, Part 3

This vagabond is 71 days away from beginning my new life in Italy for at least one year. I am out of my home. My condominium is rented out and I had planned a great deal of traveling in the USA before leaving.  But my eyes had other plans.

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October 25th, 2016

Wine tasting the Marco Cecchini Way

Last June I had the great privilege of meeting The Winefathers. These men and women support artisanal wineries by crowd funding with a twist. They offer you a family membership when you donate to a specific winery. Wouldn’t you love to belong to an Italian Wine Family? I know I do, perhaps more than one.

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October 18th, 2016

Farewell America Tour, Part 2

Ah, the Island. What can I tell you about the Island? When I was a young girl I slept in the upstairs bedroom with its shed roof and fairytale layout. I remember how safe I felt there. I pretended to be a princess who could look out her window at the land and the water she ruled.

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October 11th, 2016

Farewell America Tour, Part 1

Finalmente, finally, I am out of my home and essentially a
vagabond for the next two months. The path of my move to Italy beckons.

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September 27th, 2016

I Get By With a Little Help from My Famiglia

Moving to Italy has been a dream of mine since I was 19 years old. I have envisioned myself living in a smaller town by the sea where everyone is Italian and I can walk to the beach. This year I made the commitment to finally do it.  I began to prepare months ago.

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September 20th, 2016

The Biggest Little Italy in Minneapolis

This past Sunday, Italian-Americans and Italian Cars and Cycles threw a party by Lake Calhoun in Minneapolis. Everyone was invited. So very many people came!

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September 13th, 2016

Ten Days of Remembrance

I am from the State of Minnesota. Twenty-seven years ago a boy named Jacob Wetterling was kidnapped. His parents (shown above) worked tirelessly to find Jacob, to assist others suffering like them, and to work with the government to help other families and prevent kidnappings.  At the beginning of the past 10 days, the body of their son, Jacob, was discovered.

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September 7th, 2016

The Ups and Downs of an Italian Family

It is the week before Labor Day. I am at home in Minneapolis, donating my excess belongings, preparing to move to Italy, working and writing. It is a busy week for our family. My daughter Stephanie and granddaughter Magnolia arrive from the West Coast while my brother John and Sister-In-Law Kris arrive from the East Coast. Party time, Italian style is on its way.

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August 23rd, 2016

Yummy Italy! What More Do You Need?

What Italian word does nearly everyone know? Mangia! Eat! We all associate Italy with the cuisine of Italy. If you love to mangia, enjoy the following interview and photos!

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August 15th, 2016

I Found Two Pieces of Heaven In Liguria, Part 2: Adventure and Peace In Portovenere

After time with family and friends, I wanted to try something new. I had never spent time in Liguria on previous Italian journeys. I hoped to locate special, off the beaten track locations for my clients here. What I found was heaven for myself and for my clients.

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August 9th, 2016

I Found Two Pieces of Heaven in Liguria, Part 1: Serenity in Tellaro

After time with family and friends, I wanted to try something new. I had never spent time in Liguria on previous Italian journeys. I hoped to locate special, off the beaten track locations for my clients here. What I found was heaven for myself and for my clients.

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August 2nd, 2016

I May Have Found my Happy Place in Liguria

A month has passed since I first discovered the beauty and elegance of Liguria.  And I miss it every day!

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July 26th, 2016

One of the Best Travel Days of my Life: Km Zero Tours

I have been traveling since I was 4 years old. I have seen the Great Pyramids of Egypt, been all over Europe and North America, even Alaska. I have been to Italy a dozen times or more. Yet, meeting Arianna Cini and Alessio De Genova in Tuscany was definitely one of my top 10 travel experiences.

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July 19th, 2016

Eating My Way Around the Oltrarno

I love everything about Florence. I love the art, the architecture, the piazzas, the people and I love the food. I have spent months in Florence over the last few years and yet I have never really explored all of the traditional, local cuisine.  Lucky for me I found Eating Italy tours, the Food Lovers’ Guide to Florence.

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July 5th, 2016

More Family

As my travels in Italy are almost complete at least for this time I keep thinking about my family here and how sono una donna fortunata (I am a lucky woman.). Family is everything for an Italian or Italian-American. And it keeps growing.

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June 28th, 2016

Da sola un altra volta, Alone again, while traveling in Italy

Traveling alone can have little surprises like this. You can be hit by a wave of loneliness out of nowhere.  I find I just need to go with it. It helps to talk with friends or family but when they are not around I talk to myself. And suddenly I remembered that there are so many things that I have as a solo person, da sola, that maybe others do not have.

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June 21st, 2016

The WineFathers Made me an Offer I Could Not Refuse

Less than a year ago, Take Me Home Italy opened a Twitter Account.  I was a total novice in the Twittersphere. All I had wanted to do was get the word out about our business of assisting others to reach their dream of traveling in Italy the best way for them. One of my first new friends on Twitter had the curious name of The WineFathers.

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June 14th, 2016

My Gastronomical Adventure in Modena

Traveling in Italy is a feast for all your five senses. As I traveled by train from Milano to Modena I was hoping for something to catch my eye: rolling hills, mountains, something. I was a bit disappointed as the train traverse flat farmland and open grasslands.

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June 7th, 2016

Volare, Woh Oh, Cantare, Woh Oh Oh Oh

Yes, I am singing again. Volare, To fly, Cantare, To Sing. I am feeling it right now. As you are reading this I am arriving in Milano.  My groups are organized and ready for their adventures and I am ready for mine.

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May 31st, 2016

Life in the Fast Lane

For the past couple of weeks, it seems like everything is happening at one time. And I keep hearing  3 lines of a song by the Eagles repeating: “Life in the fast land, sure to make you lose your mind. Life in the fast lane.” I hear it all, guitar, drums, voice, all of it, over and over again. Are the Eagles trying to tell me something?

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May 17th, 2016

Travel Planning with an Italian Twist

For the last few weeks I have been putting the final touches on 3 different travel adventures. All of them, including ME, are traveling in June. Sometimes I get a bit confused as I make the plans.

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May 10th, 2016

Mother’s Day with Mom

Today is Mother’s Day. I wanted to spend it with my mom. I decided to make it a picnic complete with wine.

After arriving, I took out my picnic blanket, my vino, an aperitivo (snack food, Italian style) flowers, and I sat down. It is such a sunny, beautiful day to be outside together.

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May 3rd, 2016

Long Live the Italians

Have you ever travelled to Italy and noticed all the elders still participating in life? Sometimes they are sitting outside cleaning vegetables or legumes. Other times they are carrying their shopping bags home from the market. Have you wondered why you notice them wherever you go in Italy?

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April 26th, 2016

How much does it cost to grab your own piece of Italy?

Our friends at Gate-Away specialize in home sales in Italy and know their business very well. I feel honored by their request to help my followers to understand the buying process costs when seeking that dream home in Italy. Things are done differently in Italy.  Don’t let that stop you. I won’t let it stop me.

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April 19th, 2016

Turn Off the TV and Travel!

Life is complicated. Sometimes it is just easier to sit on the sofa and fall head first into the television set.  While watching whichever series pulls you into the story line, you forget about deadlines at work, your kid’s problem at school, the visa bill and all other aggravations.

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March 29th, 2016

The Day after Easter

In Italy, the day after Easter is a national holiday. They know how to live right, don’t they?  Families often picnic together or do other outdoor activities to celebrate the arrival of the new life of primavera, Spring.

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March 22nd, 2016

It’s all about the family, La Famiglia e Italia, Italy

For the past week I have been traveling—not in Italy, but with family.  The prior week I spent with family here in Minnesota. These two weeks have gotten me thinking about what family, la Famiglia, is all about.

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March 18th, 2016

The Italian Geriatric League Weekend Part 2

Yesterday we visited the nursing home.  Today, we are attending two visitations at the local Funeral Home.  Yes, I do have an exciting life…

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March 15th, 2016

The Italian Geriatric League Weekend

I know that getting old is not really funny. Neither are visits to Nursing Homes or Funeral Homes. Yet, last weekend, while experiencing all of the above, we found humor, love, sadness and camaraderie. What does this have to do with being Italian or traveling to Italy, you ask? It has Everything to do with it.

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March 8th, 2016

Vietri Sul Mare, The Art Center of the Amalfi Coast

When we visit Italy, we see beautiful artwork everywhere. The Museums and churches are filled with all the greats: Da Vinci, Michelangelo, Caravaggio, Botticelli and more. Today, that talent is still present throughout the country. I am a fan of ceramic art. And I know one of the best ceramic artists in Italy, Romeo Cuomo. His work has been showcased in a variety of publications over the years. He will soon be featured in Luxetiger—International Fashion, Design and Better Living Magazine.

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March 1st, 2016

Meet my Wine Cousins

Everyone has cousins, cugini.  I not only have blood related cousins, I have Wine Cousins! And you can have them too!

One of the highlights of our February whirlwind adventure in southern Italy was connecting with my Wine Cousins, Sara and Luca Carbone. What is a Wine Cousin you ask? Aspetta!  Hold on! Let me explain.

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February 23rd, 2016

House Hunting in Italy at the Speed of Light

So you want to live in Italy and, perhaps, buy a home there. So do my cousin Sonseere and I.

The purpose of our February trip was to discover places in Italy where we could live.  We each want our own place and hope to live near each other.  We want to experience la dolce vita, the sweet life, of living in Italy.

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February 16th, 2016

The Pains and Pleasures of driving in Italy

Guido la macchina in Italia, I am driving a car in Italy. For the first time, la prima volta, I chose to drive in Italy. My cousin Sonseere and I are avid travelers and have been to Italy many times. Yet neither of us had been brave enough to try to drive with those crazy Italian drivers. Granted, in the US I drive like that old song, “The little old lady from Pasedena.” But I am only Italian-American. Can I hang with those true Italian drivers?

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February 9th, 2016

If I Could Live in Italy

Ciao tutti! It is Marilyn here from Take Me Home Italy.  While I am off in Italy chasing rainbows and loving every moment of it, I did not want to miss a Travel Tuesday blogpost.

Instead, I asked Susan Nelson of Timeless Italy to be my guest today. Susan is an excellent writer, great traveler and experienced Italophile. I asked her to answer three personal questions pertaining to her travels in Italy.  Read on and enjoy her wonderful photos too.

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February 2nd, 2016

Beyond Jet Lag Into The Dead Zone

It is 2 am in Santa Marinella, Italy and I should be sleeping. My cousin Sonseere and I arrived at the Rome airport around 11pm local time. And I think I have moved beyond Jet lag into the Dead Zone.

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January 26th, 2016

More Fun with Family, and a touch of family history

Earlier this year I had the opportunity to spend a few days in Portland, Oregon where my cousin Lorie lives. Lorie’s maiden name was Loretta Del Fiacco and she was born in St. Paul, MN to Frank Del Fiacco and Frances Damiani Del Fiacco.  Auntie Fran has always been one of my favorites.

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January 12th, 2016

2016, Saying Goodbye, Ciao for Now

Right now I am struggling to face a major change in my life.  For the last 3 ½ weeks I have been in Washington State.  After 4 ½ years of living in Minnesota, mostly with me, my daughter Stephanie and granddaughter Maggie have now moved to the Pacific Northwest.

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January 1st, 2016

2016, The Year of Action

Let’s face it. Everyone makes New Year’s resolutions. (Mine were made while watching Star Wars, by the way). Every year I resolve to lose weight. It has seemed to have the opposite effect.

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December 22nd, 2015

Any given Ricci Christmas

Chistmas is the most memorable time of year for so very many families. Our family is no different. As Italian-Americans, a Christmas holiday meal is all about Italian food and Italian family fun.

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December 15th, 2015

My Favorite Italian Teacher, Part 2

My Italian teacher, Antonio Libertino, answered more questions for us about learning Italian, his methods for helping his students, and traveling in Italy with an emphasis on his beloved Calabria. Take a few moments to read what he has to say. And check the links for his books, his free audio recordings and more. 

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December 8th, 2015

In Vacanza con la Mia Famiglia (On vacation with my family)

If I had my way I would be traveling in Italy right now. I love Italy and there is so much more to experience there. But let’s face it; I can’t fly back and forth across the Atlantic all the time. However, I am a traveler and as the old saying goes “any port in a storm.”

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December 1st, 2015

My Favorite Italian Teacher, Part 1

Learning Italian, the language of my forefathers, is so important to me. I want to understand the Italian people and my personal belief is that by studying how people speak I can understand how they think. And, besides, la lingua Italiana e’ la piu bella lingua del mondo! (The Italian language is the most beautiful language in the world!)

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November 24th, 2015

Thanksgiving, Italian-American Style

It’s November. It is cold. And we are hungry! Time to celebrate with La Famiglia for Thanksgiving.

Yes, all Americans expect Turkey and dressing, sweet potatoes and mashed potatoes, a bounty of vegetables along with an abundance of alcoholic beverages and too many pies. It all started with the Pilgrims, the first settlers from Europe here in the United States. The story is that the Native Americans helped the newcomers to survive. All celebrated with a wonderful meal.

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November 17th, 2015

Stories of Veterans of War

On Sunday, November 15, 2015, Festa Italiana Minnesota honored all Italian-American Veterans (Thanks and a big shout out to our local Italian Community and Festa Italiana MN). We had a wonderful day of great food, camaraderie, and discussions of Italians in wars as far back as our War of Independence.  Italians have been instrumental in all conflicts that the United States has been a part of, up to, and including, the current War on Terror.

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November 10th, 2015

Life is what happens when you’re making other plans!

I love to travel. I would fly away any time. But there was a time a few years ago when I made the decision I would travel with or without a partner or friend along with me. I headed out in April and basically did not return the Minnesota until July for a few weeks and returned to Italy for another month. It was a fabulous adventure.

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November 3rd, 2015

La Ragazza e La Nonna, The Young Girl and the Grandmother

My 4½ year old nipote, granddaughter, is home with me today.  She has a sprained ankle and is watching kids’ TV as she ices her ankle and I write. At least I try to write.

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October, 27th 2015

Are we there yet? Achieving your Italian Adventure

Do you remember those family trips across town or across the state when you were jammed in the car with your family? It was cramped. Your siblings were fighting and dad was yelling at all of you for distracting him.

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October, 20th 2015

Why travel? Why Italy?

Why do people travel? Why do we bother to spend money and leave the nest to go to an unknown place? And why go to Italy? What’s the pull to Italy?

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October, 13th 2015

What Take Me Home Italy Really Means

People travel to Italy by the thousands every month. They go alone, travel with family or friends, and join tour groups. Some stay in 5 star hotels, some stay in hostels.

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October, 6th 2015

Sono una Nonna!  I am a grandmother!

How did this happen? Sono una Nonna! I am a grandmother of a beautiful little sweetheart named Magnolia. Life will never be the same.

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September 29th, 2015

Viaggiare da sola, To travel alone

A few years ago, I talked my friend Dot into going to Italy with me. I was so afraid to travel alone. My unidentified fears were trumped by my definite desire to experience Italy once again.

Dot and I traveled to London, Greece and Italy together for an entire month. We attended the same Italian language school in Florence, Instituto Italiano, but Dot returned to the US after 2 weeks of classes. Now I had to face my fears.

Viaggiare da sola, to travel alone, a woman travelling alone… What’s the big deal about that? What was I afraid of, anyway?

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September 22nd, 2015

La Famiglia Italiana, The Italian Family

We all know what family means, don’t we? Well, maybe that word means different things to different people.

According to Dictionary.com, family means:

A. a basic social unit consisting of parents and their children, considered as a group, whether dwelling together or not.

B. a social unit consisting of one or more adults together with the children they care for.

That doesn’t sound like my Italian-American family. For us, our “family unit” consists of every single relative we ever had or our parents, grandparents and great-grandparents had. It means paesani, close friends, from the “old country” and, of course, our immediate family.

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September 15th, 2015

Grandparents Day 2015

This past Sunday was Grandparent’s Day and all I could think about was my own Nonni (grandparents) and Bisnonna (great grandmother).

I grew up with one grandfather, 2 grandmothers and 1 great grandmother, all of whom were Italian.  Nonna and Grandpa Ricci raised 9 children of their own plus 3 more nipoti (nieces and nephews) during the Great Depression. Grandpa loved his wine and loved his fisarmonica (accordion), his “squeezebox” as he called it, and he played it for all the kids.

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September 8th, 2015

Travel Tips: Five Things to Do Before you Travel to Italy

Ciao a tutti! Are you dreaming of that trip to Italy? Have you begun your plans, secured lodging, transportation and you prepared to pack your bags? (If not, that is what I do for people every day!) It is so exciting, isn’t it? Andiamo! Let’s go!

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September 1st, 2015

Flirting with Leo

Do you know why many people travel? I think it is for the adventure, the opportunity to explore and learn more about life itself. I know that is a huge motivator for me. I want to know. Sono curiosa. I am curious. My mother used to say, “Marilyn remember, curiosity killed the cat!” HUH?

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August 25th, 2015

The Best Laid Plans of Mice and Men

I am a travel arranger. I work hard to make your travel adventures work well for you. However, I have learned how “stuff” happens even when well planned.

Per esempio, For example, In May 2015 some of my family members journeyed to Italy to meet our Ricci relatives. Overall the trip was fantastic! I planned everything and checked it all over multiple times.

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August 17th, 2015

The Traveling Turtle

We have all been at the airport and seen a small family pick up 8 pieces of luggage, each one bigger than a ten year old. What is in all that stuff? Chi sa! Who knows!

After many years of traveling only in the USA, I chose to take a tour of Egypt. It was a 17 day trip and I brought a 26” and 22” rolling carry on plus a huge shoulder bag. When I had to drag that luggage down the hall or to the bus I wanted to leave it for the Bedouins! All I needed was a sundress and a shower. Why did I bring all that stuff?

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August 10th, 2015

Three Things in Italy You Don't Find in the US

Ciao tutti! Hello everyone! Have you ever wondered what it is about Italy that so very many people fall in love the country and culture? The US is a good place to live, the leader of the free world, and the land of the American Dream. Why are we so infatuated with Italy?

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August 7th, 2015

The Sirens of Sorrento are Calling!

On that Ciao for Now trip a few years ago one of the favorite places I explored was the lovely Sorrento. My friend Dot and I visited Sorrento prior to starting our classes in Florence. Sorrento is the gateway to the Amalfi Coast in the Campania region of Italy. The rugged coast with its vertical stone cliffs is breathtaking. And the city itself has a charm of its own.

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August 5th, 2015

Ciao for now, huh?

Ciao (pronounced like chow) for Now. What does that mean? Ciao is Italian for Hello or Goodbye. The expression Ciao for Now means Hello or Goodbye for Now. Huh?

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July 29th, 2015

The Tarantella, the Italian Dance of Life

Ballare, to dance.  Italians love to dance.  They dance at the drop of a hat.  But one dance in particular has been a hit here in America, the Tarantella.  There are many legends about the Tarantella.  It began in the town of Taranto is southern Italy.  In the 1500s there was an outbreak of Tarantula poisoning.  Yes there are tarantula spiders in Taranto, Italy.

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July 27th, 2015

Festa Italiana MN 2015 Bocce is life

Bocce is an Italian Institution.  The game of bocce has been around since Roman times and is part of the Heart and Soul of Italians. Two teams of up to four players toss heavy bocce balls approximately the size of a softball at a smaller ball called the pullino.  Your goal with each underhand throw is to get your ball closest to that pullino.  If that means knocking the opponent’s ball away, so be it.

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July 22th, 2015

Fun at Festa Italiana Minnesota

Last weekend in St. Paul, Minnesota there was a gathering of Italian-Americans and those who love Italy. Thousands of people braved the 95 degree weather with 100% humidity to rub shoulders with other Italian-Americans and enjoy the Italian-American experience.

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July 13th, 2015

Being a Traveler at Heart

I love the history of the Italian people.  Our ancestors conquered the known world 2000 years ago and influenced nearly every culture in Europe and Northern Africa (not always for the best).  Some of the greatest adventurers, philosophers, scientists, artists and musicians were and are Italians.  The Renaissance again changed the world and the Italians instigated it.  Dante, Gallileo, Michelangelo, DaVinci, Bernini, Puccini, Pavorati,  Sinatra….need I go on?

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July 11th, 2015

I’m Italian-American.  So what?

Being Italian-American is one thing.  Being Italian is another.  I strive to be both.  I am a dual citizen of the USA and Italy.  Again, so what you say.  Aspetta!  Wait!  I will explain.

I love the history of the Italian people.  Our ancestors conquered the known world 2000 years ago and influenced nearly every culture in Europe and Northern Africa (not always for the best).  Some of the greatest adventurers, philosophers, scientists, artists and musicians were and are Italians.  The Renaissance again changed the world and the Italians instigated it.  Dante, Gallileo, Michelangelo, DaVinci, Bernini, Puccini, Pavorati,  Sinatra….need I go on?

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July 10th, 2015

I’m Italian-American.

Ciao tutti! Hello everyone! My name is Marilyn Ricci and I am 100% Italian-American. Who cares you say. Why does that matter? Let me explain.

America is the Melting Pot. This melting pot brings so many wonderful qualities to the US citizenry that we have been leaders in new ideas since our inception. We have strengths and talents from the cultures of the world. However, as we blend our lives together, we do lose some of the flavors of each culture.

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