Aspettando L’estate


Now that it’s mid semester and my life has been spinning mess of work, school, home, and tutoring, I now have a constant state of half alive and half drowing. I can’t wait though for the summer when I will be soaking up Italian sunshine and gorging myself in countless pounds of pasta and pizza.
Until then I will be tutoring, house sitting, working, trying to get back in shape at the pool, and studying until the very last second. In the beginning of the semester I had a lot more time to think about the trip this summer, but unfortunately… for now I will be barely getting through it.

Yesterday, we had an impromptu birthday party for my mom who will be leaving with my dad for 14 days on a Latin American cruise during Spring Break while I will be here, house sitting at a cute little house in the countryside for a few days. Then I will come back home and tutor for a few more days before returning back to work. I’ve been tutoring to supplement extra income before my trip and it has been quite nice to have this little nest egg.

I’ll be hosting my first give away soon, so make sure you follow both my blog and instagram. I will post the rules soon.





Cinnamon streusel topping:
2/3 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup (packed) light or dark brown sugar
2 Tbsp organic cane sugar
1 tsp ground cinnamon
5 Tbsp unsalted butter, melted

Apple muffins:
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp kosher salt
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp ground ginger
1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
1/8 tsp ground cloves
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
1 cup organic cane sugar
2 large eggs
1-1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
1-1/2 cups (about 2 small) tart apples, peeled and diced

Vanilla glaze:
1/2 cup confectioners sugar, sifted
1-1/2 Tbsp whole milk
1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract


Make the muffins:
Preheat the oven to 425℉. Line a 12-cup muffin tin with paper liners or lightly grease with butter or nonstick baking spray. Set aside.

In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves. Set aside.

Using a stand up mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Turn the mixer down to low, and add the eggs, one at a time, followed by the vanilla, mixing well after each addition. Scrape down the sides of the bowl with a spatula as needed.

Add the flour mixture to the mixing bowl along with the chopped apples, and use a spatula mix until just combined. Be careful not to over mix. The batter will be very thick.

Use a cookie scoop to divide the batter between the prepared muffin cups. Top with the streusel mix, pressing the crumbs gently into the batter.

Bake at 425℉ for 5 minutes, then turn the oven temperature down to 350℉, and continue baking for another 12-15 minutes, until the muffin tops are golden and a cake tester inserted into the center comes out clean. Remove from the oven, and allow the muffins to cool for a few minutes in the muffin tin, before transferring to a baking rack to cool completely.

Make the vanilla glaze:
Whisk together the confectioners sugar, milk, and vanilla until smooth. Drizzle over the warm muffins. Enjoy!!





The Home Stretch


School is almost done for the semester and so far I still feel like I have conflicting feelings about my Italian. I have been using my tutor for about a month and half now, and he is absolutely fabulous. I don’t think I could say anything negative about him. Being home with just my dad has been a real trial of my true patience because despite loving my dad, we are beyond polar opposites in about every aspect of our daily lives. He is very quick to temper and has a short fuse, me on the other hand, I try to avoid conflict and yelling. When someone raises their voice, I lower mine. Moreover, we just are like a cat and a dog trying to live in the same house unsupervised, being that my mom is literally the glue that keeps the house together… I can’t wait for her to return. 

I leave for my trip in less than 23 days and I am beyond excited to be going back to Italy again! I will arrive in Bologna with my friend and his adorable mother who I am jealous of and want her as my mom. I will leave the day after Christmas and arrive on the 27th. I have to download a bunch of movies and things to keep me occupied during the flight. Any recommendations? I would love to know if Baby is on iTunes as I bingewatched that in like a two day time frame. 


Ricette: Pappardelle with wild mushrooms 🍝 

3/4 pound/350 g porcini mushrooms (fresh)

2 shallots

1 clove of garlic

1 small bunch of flat-leaf parsley

Leaves of 1 sprig of rosemary

A few leaves of fresh sage

4 tablespoons olive oil

3/4 pound/350 g canned diced tomatoes

3/4 cup dry white wine

Fine sea salt to taste

Black pepper (freshly ground) to taste

Optional: 1/4 cup heavy cream (see below)

1 pound/400 g pappardelle (ideally fresh rather than dried)

Optional: freshly grated Grana Padano or Parmigiano-Reggiano

Clean the mushrooms, brushing the dirt away from the stems, and separate the caps from the stems; dice the stems and slice the caps, keeping them separate.

Mince the shallots, garlic, and herbs and sauté them for about 3-4 minutes in 4 tablespoons of oil in a large pot. Add the diced stems, cook 1 more minute, and then add the tomatoes and 1/2 cup of the wine. Season with a little salt and black pepper and simmer the mixture over a very gentle flame for 30 minutes. Add a little more wine and a splash of water (or the liquid the mushrooms steeped in if you are using dried mushrooms), and the sliced caps.

Continue simmering the sauce over a gentle flame until the pasta is ready. Depending upon how much moisture the mushrooms contain, you may need to add more liquid — another splash of wine and a little hot water, or if you’d rather 1/4 cup of heavy cream, and if need be, a little water.

In the meantime, bring pasta water to a boil, salt it, and cook the pappardelle. Drain the pasta and toss it with the sauce; then serve with grated cheese for those who want it.



Without Me- Halsey

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Things I loved in November: 

  1. The Goodnotes 4 app: Great for studying for school or all you people trying to go paperless. 
  2. “The Good Doctor” and “Baby”, they are AMAZING… you should watch! 




Non so se ho Bisogno di Dormire o una Terapia Endovenosa di Caffè… 

Finals are killing me. I have one more week of school, before I am done, and ready for the semester to be over. I’ve been going nonstop with child care, work, and school for the past month, so a reprieve from everyday life will be welcomed with open arms. This weekend I’ll have a lot of things to finish up, some last minute shopping, cleaning my room and the rest of the house for the carpet cleaners, exams to study for, and my favorite thing in the world! Packing! 😀 This post unfortunately is a tad short because I need to go to finish my Italian study guide before hand.


New Toys, Boune Idee, E Nouve Avventure

After an uneventful Thanksgiving break, I am more than delighted to be back at work for a few more weeks until I embark on a new short lived adventure for five weeks. As you read this I a typing it on my new found love. It’s the Brydge 9.7 in (26.6 cm) keyboard attachment for my iPad Pro, click here if you would like to buy it. The only thing is that there is a slight learning crurve to this keyboard. First off, it’s missing a trackpad. After not having a laptop for almost a year, is still is a bit of a disadvantage because I want to subcontiously reach for the track pad. Which should be a testiment of the quality of this keyboard. So, as of now I am more than exstatic about my new set up.

Tomorrow I will be heading to the Charles Shultz Museum with my students. Working for the most prestigious public school in my area has been such tremendous leap in my career. Not only is it a top notch school, but every one of the teachers there has been through the trainings and courses that I am going though now. They admire my drive, personality, and attitude. They give me hope that being a teacher was not that bad of an idea. I am thankful for the last school that I taught at though. I learned an uninmaginable wealth of knowledge that I couldn’t have attained through books at college or any book that I could have gotten my hands on.

My italian classes have been going far better than I have ever imagined, though I am quite annoying I guess as my teacher often has a slight eye roll when I raise my hand, selectively ignores me, or calls on my classmate behind me…poveretta. I have made a small group of friends in that class who, we have all become very a very close knit group together. I definately do wish that my school offered an Italian 2 course in the evenings for the next semester. Ideally I would like to move to Italy for work, as it’s so far my favorite place I have ever been to. As well as was my first solo trip.

Speaking of trips, tomorrow my best friend from college who now lives in Santa Rosa with her new boyfriend, will come and visit me. Having your best friend living in another city for the bulk of your friendship really puts a strain on your relationship because you can’t just pop in when one of you is havng a bad day and watch a movie together, have a mutual friend to mope around with, or in general lift your spirits. It’s more of “okay i’ll call you at xyz time, and I’ll come and visit you as soon as possible!” Which usualy happens very rarely. In the last year we saw eachother twice. To have her living in the same city as me is really a blessing in itself because to have your best friend live far away at the very least already stacking the odds against you. None the less, tomorrow should be full of busy but fun events.

Ciao a tutti!