Saturday, 5 December 2015

Sweet Memories Of Dublin...

Being at home from two months I've decided it was the right time to share with you some of the pictures I took when my best friend Giulia came to visit me in Dublin in early September.
We spent a week together, sharing the little bedroom I was living in and trying to get the most of the time we had in Dublin, visiting the city and its surroundings.

I can't explain the happiness I felt when I saw her at the airport, we were so excited that we couldn't stop smiling and laughing like foolish!

We spent the following days visiting Dublin, starting from the Trinity College, with its breathtaking library and the famous sphere of Arnaldo Pomodoro, and continuing with St. Stephen's Green, Merrion Square, the National Gallery, Phoenix Park, St. Patrick Cathedral , but also the lovely village of Howth and its amazing 10 km of coastal path!

We tasted the best food ever, especially all the vegan cakes, scones and muffins we shared in front of the biggest cups of chai tea latte!
 It was amazing to be with her in a city I loved so much and I really wanted that our mini holiday could last forever!!!

Monday, 9 November 2015

Because Fall Rhymes With Pumpkin...

One of the reasons why I love the fall season, with its magic atmosphere, the feeling of peace that is brought by its colours, the rustle of the fallen leaves and even, perhaps, the first sprinkles, is the pumpkin! Plain and simple! 
So, to celebrate my passion for this orange gift of nature I've decided to share with you one of my favourite recipes: 
Pumpkin muffins with chocolate chips
...a little treat, delicious and satisfying.


250 gr. of steamed pumpkin flesh | 250 gr. of flour | 150 gr. of brown sugar | 150 gr. of margarine | cinnamon, cloves, and ginger powder | 1 egg | 1 teaspoon of baking powder | 1 pinch of salt | 100 gr. of chocolate chips

In a bowl, whisk the eggs with the sugar, add the cold melted butter, the pumpkin (mashed with a fork) and the spices.
Mix well and add the sifted flour with the baking powder and a pinch of salt.
Add the chocolate chips (dusted with flour) and pour the mixture into the muffins molds.
Bake in preheated oven at 180 ° C for about 30-35 minutes. 
Sprinkle with icing sugar to taste.

The last time I prepared these muffins I was still in Dublin, in the tiny but cozy flat in the south of the city, so they will always bring with them all of the sweetest irish for each bite!

Lots of love
Thursday, 15 October 2015

House is made of bricks and stones, Home is made of Love alone

After a couple of crazy weeks, spent as much as I could with friends and family, enjoying the warm waters of a spa in the little city of Merano, some lovely dinners made of hugs, comfort food and little talks, the amazing autumnal colors of the mountains during a nice pic-nic, that ended up with a hot chocolate and many many laughs in the cozy house of a friend near a very picturesque lake, surrounded by woods, I’ve finally found some time for myself to stop and dedicate my thoughts to this little place of mine.
Leaving Dublin the first day of October, after three months full of discoveries, emotions and challenges, hasn't been as hard as I had expected! I mean, even if I really really love the city and I have been feeling welcomed and at ease there from the very first moment, during this period away from home, from the people I love, I  have realized that I can’t live separate from all of them, from the verdant, peaceful, tidy and comfortable little village where I live since when I was a child and where all my roots are.

The first days at home I've felt grateful even for the smallest things like enjoying breakfast with my mummy, the morning cuddles with Cloe, going to the farmer market to fill my bags with delicious vegetables and seasonal fruits and wandering in the little streets of Venice in a bright and sunny afternoon.
Living abroad is not easy and, in spite of the excitement of a new life that you can built from scratch, sometimes you feel lonely and miserable, and all you want to do is to fetch the first plane to go home! I must say I have been really lucky to have my dear friend Annalisa (who I met more than 6 years ago in the beautiful city of the lagoon) and her lovely boyfriend who have taken care of me and made me feel at home, and my new japanese friend Chikako, who I can't wait to meet again in a couple of months!Friendship knows no boundaries and, if it’s deep and genuine, it can last for years and years despite the distance!
Therefore, what I have learnt from this amazing irish experience is that every person, even the strongest and the most independent one, really need to have something or someone that can give sense to the life away, that can fill it with happiness, satisfaction, dreams, and that can give his/her help, day by day, to build a new "nest" there, where you can feel at home again and you can start to weave your own web of relationships which are the secret of a joyful life.


Sunday, 30 August 2015

Sunday In Verse...

" I want to travel the world
although in my path
I will meet the rain,
that coming down will make me wet.
And even with my eyes dimmed of water 
I will see things
that in a room, sheltered
I could never see."
Thursday, 27 August 2015

Something I'm loving in Dublin...

Reading in the park: sitting on the grass, with a good book, enjoying the gentle breeze in a sunny day, it's one of the thing I love the most of my new life in Dublin.

N°7 Boots Lipstick "Sweet Copper": I want to say a big Thank you to the lovely Rebecca of "Halfway Home" who suggested me to go to Boots and ask for a "colour match" to find the shade of lipstick that matches perfectly with my skin tone. It turned out that I'm a "warm ivory" so I chose this beautiful bright color and I must say I bloody love it!

"Cornucopia": a vegetarian restaurant, on Wicklow Street in Dublin, in a beautiful Georgian building. I discovered this place thanks to my japanese friend Chikako and I loved the warm, friendly and welcoming atmosphere, but especially their menu! The food is prepared in-house, it's delicious and changes every day.
Being a dairy-free greedy girl, this is a paradise for me, because they are passionate about vegan and gluten-free food, so I can eat almost everything and, moreover, I can enjoy amazing cakes and scones!!!
The name Cornucopia is a symbol of food and abundance so I can't really think about a more perfect place to spend some quality time with my friends!

Sipping Chai Tea Latte with soy milk: the warm, aromatic flavors of cardamom, cinnamon and black pepper ...a beverage that is wonderfully sweet and spicy and makes me feel cuddled and regenerated!
I've tried it for the first time in a little Starbucks near St. Stephen's Green this summer ( how did I survive for 27 years without it??!!) and I'm determined to learn how to prepare it by myself before the long, freezing winter, because it's the perfect thing to enjoy under a wool blanket, watching the snow falling down...Any suggestion??!!

Wandering around in the amazing independent bookstore "Chapters" : housed on two floors, it sells an extensive range of books, music, and dvds, both new and secondhand, as well as thousands of bargain priced titles!
As you know very well I'm a booklover so, when I came in for the first time I felt completely speechless! I spent more than two hours inside, totally absorbed in this magic world! There were so many amazing books that I could have bought everything but, in the end, I decided to choose two classics: "Little Women" by Louise May Alcott and "Rebecca" by Daphne Du Maurier. I can't wait to loose myself again between the shelves of this little piece of heaven in the hearth of Dublin!


Saturday, 15 August 2015

And The Sun Was Shining In Howth...

Hi lovelies!

Here I am for another chapter of my life in Ireland!
The last weekend of July my parents and my sister flew to Dublin to visit me for some days, so I thought it would have been a good idea to take advantage of the sunny weather and going to Howth, a small fishing village, for a short family trip!
We met on Saturday morning in St. Stephen's Green and, after the sweetest hugs and kisses and a proper breakfast in Starbucks, we went straight to Tara's Station to take the train to reach our destination, ready to breath the salty air of the sea.

Once in Howth we started to wander around all the tempting little seafood restaurants of the pier and, after an accurate selection, we chose " The Brass Monkey", which had a relaxed and fun atmosphere!
After a quick look at the menu, I decided to go for a grilled salmon, with roasted baby potatoes, julienne of vegetables and citrus...utterly delicious!!!I don't know if it was because I was with my family and I felt incredibly happy and relaxed, but I enjoyed every single bite of that meal! 

After lunch we decided to explore the village, so we spent a couple of hours strolling around the tiny streets, the cosy cemetery with its old abbey and the market, which offered a fantastic selection of local, Irish and international food, but also jewelry and gift ideas.

Determined to see the seals, we went up to the promontory, where we could finally catch the sight of them...two tubby lovely exemplares, which were relaxing with their bellies up in the cold water of the sea!
Furthermore from up there the scenery was stunning, and we spent at least half an hour sitting on the grass, enjoying the view of the ocean in all its shades of blue, kissed by a pale sun and cuddled by the sound of the waves...

After a month spent far from my family, it was so nice to be together, laughing, chatting, taking lots of pictures...and I realised once again how lucky I am and how much I love them, especially my little sister who is growing up as a wonderful young woman and is always my best ally!!!