If not now, when?

One American woman. Twenty acres and a 1650 farmhouse in Tuscany. Random introspection and hilarity, depending on the day.

04 January 2006

Arrivederci, 2005 - Benvenuto 2006!

Whoosh!!! That's the sound made by two weeks of time evaporating in a blur. How it was spent: Toasting a welcome with MY wine, which UBlend was thoughtful enough to find online and carry over with him. The gang at the Cacciatore's warm welcome of my family into theirs. Group hiking to collect kindling and pinecones. Christmas Eve in Firenze, a grey day made a bit more sparkly by the hustle of people in the market and the lights dangling overhead. Lunch at the pizzeria on Piazza Signoria that took a half hour to get to. The cellphone that someone needed more than I did that was stolen Christmas eve (and the cute boy in the TIM store that made it all better.) The not-so-traditional seven fishes Vigilia dinner.

A relaxing Christmas morning filled with mimosas, The Mom's perfect sticky buns, overflowing stockings, thoughtful gifts, and laughter. Finally getting the hang of 'up and down the river'. An enormous Vestri solid chocolate tree centerpiece. Actually pulling off the overly-ambitious Christmas dinner of individual beef wellingtons (with *lots* of help!). Charades on a stick. A ten year old girl who was a great helper and an amazingly good sport with all the adult-things going on (assisted occasionally by reruns of 'Full House' on DVD.) "Auguri" by phone, mail, email, package, or carrier pigeon from friends near and far, old and new. My first snowstorm, and almost enough alcohol to make it through. New Years' Eve with sparklers on the front porch in the rain. A fireplace that worked overtime. Losing at least a Euro a night to The Mom in Backgammon (hey, we may be family, but we're a gambling family...!). Two unexpected days of vacation due to a cancelled return flight. The ceremonial New Years' Day burning of the greens that nearly singed our eyebrows. Stacking, bundling, stacking, breaking down, hauling enough wood to feed my hungry fireplace for the rest of the winter.

There simply are not words sufficient to thank The Mom, UBlend and the Rugrat for making the trek ... It's a toasty smushy glowy feeling to have had a real holiday here with people I love spending time with; makes it seem more like home. As that hokey song goes, "you make it feel like Christmas". I'm breaking one of my general 'anonymous blog' principles here by posting the pictures, but, well, yaknow, it was Christmas. There's plenty of time to return to my hardass anonymity in the new year.


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