Thursday, September 18, 2014

lunching with olivia

Olivia is in Kindergarten this year and while our school does offer full day Kindergarten, we decided to only send her 3 days a week full day and 2 days half day. We did a similar modified schedule with Sofia when she was in Kindergarten and it was great. I get that little bit of extra time with her and we won't get these days back with our little ones at home. She has lunch with Mario and I, sometimes we go for walks, meet up with friends or just have a lazy afternoon around the house waiting for Sofia to get home.

I love this picture of Olivia eating and "reading" her comic book while I prepared lunch for Mario and myself to join our little girl. 

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Here kitty kitty kitty...

Feline crossing in centro storico, Mesagne, Italy

Monday, September 15, 2014

A trip to San Cosimo and a cake!

Each year in Mesagne, we visit the shrine of San Cosimo e Damiano just outside the city of Oria. These two saints were my Nonna's patron saints and a pilgrimage she used to make on foot each year, about 20 kilometers. There used to be a zoo within the site and I'm sad to say that last year they closed it down due to lack of funds. It was small, but so perfect. I have fond memories of visiting San Cosimo and making our traditional visit to the church, taking a walk through the zoo and then strolling the little market. Glad my girls were able to visit the zoo but sad that Mario will only have our pictures of the zoo to talk about with his sisters.

Love his little face peeking out here, clearly it was time for him to nap.

The girls and I decided to make a cake for a neighbor for her birthday and while I handled the actual baking part, I let the girls decorate it on their own. Needless to say, they were so excited. Give my girls some icing and sprinkles and you'll make them very happy.

Mario enjoyed watching them make a mess, I mean masterpiece!

Friday, September 12, 2014

Banana Chocolate Chunk Muffins

What to do with lots of chocolate? Chunk it up and add to your baking. I revised my banana bread recipe to make muffins and everyone loved them! The perfect addition to breakfast or an afternoon snack.


1-3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1-1/2 cups sugar
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
2 eggs
2 medium ripe bananas, mashed
1/4 cup vegetable oil
2 Tbsp natural applesauce
1/4 cup plus 1 Tbsp milk
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup chocolate chunks


In a large bowl, stir together flour, sugar, baking soda and salt. In a smaller bowl, combine the eggs, bananas, oil, milk, vanilla and applesauce. Add the smaller bowl to the flour mixture bowl, stirring just until combined. Stir in chocolate chunks.

Line a muffin pan with cupcake liners and fill just a little more than halfway. I sprinkled a little more chocolate on top because who are we kidding, we have a bunch of sweet teeth in our home. Bake at 375° for 20 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Cool on wire rack.

Buon Appetito!

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

rub a dub dub, mario's in the tub

this boy loves the water! enjoys taking baths just like his big sisters used to when they were little itty bitty's.

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