Wanderlust Italy 1

This is the first of many posts where I share pictures from my trip to Italy five years ago. I can’t believe it’s been five year. Italy was a country I was homesick for before I’d ever been and I dream about going back there every day. It was eating gelato multiple times a day, living in a walled city, discovering how to communicate all over again, the most delicious food I’ve ever eaten, hurry up and wait, so much sunshine, postcard days, comfort in something foreign, trying limoncello, pizza with whole olives rolling off the slices, daily markets, siesta every afternoon, magic unfolding everywhere.


* I recently discovered picmonkey and I’ve been addicted to making pictures look awesome. So that’s where these were all edited.


Things I Love Thursday: Food.


This is the food edition because, hey why not? And food is great.

Pizza – especially mushroom and buffalo chicken (but not together). Or just plain cheese with red pepper flakes. And garlic salt. Brick over style, bar style, personal size, extra large, on english muffins…

Cupcakes – mainly because they look so cute. Also because they’re pretty tasty (especially when purchased from a cupcake bakery).

Indian food – Vegetable Samosas are my favourite but I also love vegetable pakoras, any flavour of naan that doesn’t have lamb or something yucky in it,  palak paneer, malai koftka, panner (or chicken) tikka masala. Let’s not forget papadums and mango lassi.

Pad thai.

Tofu fritters – I’ve only ever seen them sold at the Chattabox in Bridgewater but we are in love.

Baked Lays – I’m always craving them lately.

Avocado – I can’t eat them. My mouth gets itchy and my chest hurts and I’m afraid of anaphylactic shock but oh my god I’m regularly sad about the fact that I can’t eat them anymore. Because I love them. On toast. In turkey sandwiches. In my guacamole. Alone.

Clam chowder – read about my favourite here.

Lobster – in butter. As a “salad”, grilled, boiled, plain. In my mouth, yes please.

Pumpkin soup with garam masala. My mom makes this in huge batches and I eat until it’s gone every time.

Berries – raspberries and strawberries, especially. Frozen. Fresh. In smoothies. On top of ice cream, heated in oatmeal, mixed into yogurt…

Mushrooms – stuffed, diced, grilled on pizza, in tomato sauce, alone with olive oil and garlic. I’ll try mushrooms in any form (uh probably except the ‘shroom form). Substitute a portabella for a burger or throw some in pasta. Lately my favourite is grilled with mozzarella cheese and basil, maybe some grilled onions, too. Panini-style. yum. yum.

What foods are you loving today?

Seven Things!

Pizza in Lucca, Italy

So, Kate from I Dream Loudly tagged me to do a Seven Things post. Being one who absolutely loves lists, how could I object to that? Even though I just ate lunch and I’m full and sticky from my own sundae invention (Peaceful Meadows apple crisp yogurt, toast coconut, “cinnimon crunchies” etc Cinnimon Toast Crunch and butterscotch YUM) — don’t ask how I managed to spill it all over myself — I am going to list foods that I absolutely love.

Food and I have a love/hate relationship. But regardless, my tastebuds love it. And when I fall for a dish, I fall hardcore. So here’s a list of the top seven foods that I absolutely love and would eat well, whenever.

Listed in alphabetical order because I don’t have the heart to pick favourites ABOVE the list that I’ve made.

Clam Chowder – You already know about my love of Clam Chowder from this post, so it automatically has to make the list.

Ice Cream – I’ve worked on and off in an ice cream shop since I was sixteen. Right now, it’s how I spent my Saturday nights. I could also eat ice cream every day. It’s so cold and sweet and creamy and delicious.

Peanut butter and banana sandwiches – Especially grilled, these beat out peanut butter and jelly sandwiches any day. I love the flavours together, and it what’s even better is that it’s an Elvis Sandwich. Who wouldn’t love a meal preferred by The King?

Pizza – Okay, so I couldn’t really pick favourites but I must admit that pizza trumps everything else, ever. I could eat pizza every day. In fact, I often do. Of course the best pizza I’ve ever eaten was in Italy, but I’m not about to turn my nose up at an amazing slice right here. Some of my favourites are mushroom, white/ Greek, and extra cheese.

Smoothies – I love smoothies because they’re so versitle. They can be the perfect breakfast, dinner or snack. I’m not talking about the smoothies that McDonald’s now offers, either. I’m talking about the home made kind. The kinds where you throw in whatever seems to pop out at you. I tend to use brozen berries with milk and either a Weight Watchers shake packet or cocoa powder or any other powder especially if it has protein. I’ll add in peanut butter or flax seeds too. Lately I’ve been adding baby spinach to my smoothies. You can’t taste it, but it makes the smoothie turn green. How fun is that? Not to mention the added benefits of getting spinach daily (okay, so I haven’t been making them daily, but I should be!).

Tofu Fritters – I’ve only been able to find these at one Thai restaurant I’ve been to. This makes me wonder if they aren’t actual a Thai appetizer, but one of the other cuisines they offer (Malasyan and Japanese specifically come to mind). This is how they’re described on the website for The Chattabox. (Mind you, they’re also called TUFU Fritters on the site, though the menu says otherwise…) Smashed tofu with shredded vegetables in tempura flour, deep fried until golden brown. Served with cucumber mint sauce.

Vegetable Samosas – I’ve tried making these on my own, I’ve bought them frozen at Hannafords (though, I can’t seem to find the anymore, what’s up with that?) and I order them every time I’m in an Indian Restaurant. I find myself craving them sometimes when it’s been too long.

Also, Secret Society of List Addicts does guest posts every Tuesday. Should I think up some creative lists and send in for a guest appearance?



I achieved Italy through student loans and a summer art history class. It had to be done and I needed to get there the fast way. We rode bikes around the city, took the train to Rome where we got lost inside ourselves, and we wandered around speaking broken Italian to interested and disinterested natives alike. I ate the best food I’ve ever had in my entire life and gelato was a daily treat. It’s been three years and I ache tonight just as much as I ached three years ago while we walked away from the city we temporarily called home.

it's no secret that pizza is my favourite food

the mediterranean

oh yes, it is love, Tuscan countryside

some espresso

St. Peter's Basilica

I left part of my heart there in the toes of those sneakers.

<3. Melanie.Kristy

Eat. Pray. Love. Movie Edition

Let me start here: I absolutely ADORED Elizabeth Gilbert’s book. I’ve read it more than once, gushed about it to multiple people and cooed over it when I see it in stores. I loved reading about those three countries, she mentions Lucca (“my city” in Italy where I stayed three years ago), and I feel like I can identify a lot with Elizabeth — not so much in the sense that I am married and do not wish to be married, but more like I feel like maybe I don’t want to marry, and I don’t ever want to be stuck in t hat position, also that I am a writer and I want to go everywhere and see places and write about them.

Movie Edition: First off, the previews made it look like Gilbert was rich, that she just up and WENT to Italy. The movie takes no time in explaining where her funds for the trip come from. This turned my friend off while she was still debating on whether or not to watch it. I had to explain to her; Elizabeth Gilbert lost everything she had in her divorce. The only way she could fund her trip was to propose it as a book deal and get an advance. Though this sounds like an easy thing to do, think about it: she had to have done a whole lot of good writing and publishing before this to have any sort of credit enough to request an advance.

Moving on to the movie itself, Eat Pray Love was cute, had amazing scenery and a few scenes really hit home for me. I’ll watch it again, and probably even purchase it because it’s definitely a good movie for background sound or simply a movie of comfort. It’s a reminder of things that are possible, and adventures left to come. I left the theater with a huge sense of wanderlust, an urge to go someplace right THEN and wanting ice cream because that was our real plan. I also left wishing that Elizabeth Gilbert played herself in the movie. She was much nicer to look at and I feel like her personality would have fit very well (though this is something one would hope seeing as she was being portrayed…)

 Unfortunately I felt there were many scenes that did not convey the real feeling that the book had. Parts of the book were glossed over or ignored in ways that I guess make sense, because this is a movie and not all things are “important” to the movie, but that didn’t make me feel any less disappointed with the outcome. Overall I would suggest the movie, but if you’ve read the book it’s one of those that will never live up. I guess that’s to be expected though, right?

<3. Melanie.Kristy