Saturday, September 29, 2012

I thought I would post some more pics from Italy.


Not a good picture, but a good example of a thank you gift for a baptism present. The box is filled with confetti (or Jordan almonds). Beautiful, huh?


What is left of the floor inside the house that TOMA's mom lived in as a child in summer



Some other pictures from this house






A antique Fiat used as the vehicle to transport the bride and groom on their wedding day


The view of Bomba from TOMA's mother's summer house

and the drawings/paintings that I did while in Italy in a 4 x 6" Fabriano Venezia
















Baci e abbracci

Saturday, September 15, 2012


Our little superman Blue could not be saved. We miss him terribly...
April 2002 - September 14 (12:35 a.m.), 2012

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Not really creating anything. I am knitting a scarf to keep my hands and mind occupied, baking and reading "Quentins" by Maeve Binchy. I finished listening to "Scarlet Feather," before we left Philadelphia and started and finished "Minding Frankie," in Italy. I do like her books, especially the audio books that are read with an Irish brogue.

While on vacation I also read "The Namesake," by Jhumpa Lahiri. I enjoyed learning about Indian culture, but I was not that enthralled with the story. I also read "Interpreter of Maladies," by the same author, which won the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction in 1999. Again, it was okay.

I am sitting with Blue again, my trooper. He is his old personality, fidgety, purring and sweet, but weak and nothing but fur and bones. He eats and eats but does not gain any weight. I think he may not be as yellow, but as it is night with artificial light I cannot be sure.

Some more pictures from Italy...


A new friend this year. She and her litter are also being fed by the neighbor that will feed Orsetto in our absence.


In front of a neighbor's house. The owner caught me taking this photo and wanted to know what I was up to. Once I told her my husband's name she smiled and was friendly. Everyone knows everyone in this village.


Almond shells dumped in a pile by the side of the road.


The view behind the castle during my morning walks.


One of the declines behind the castle.


Another view from behind the castle.

Baci e abbracci

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Since I am still sitting with Blue...

and he is falling asleep next to me, I thought I would post some pictures from Italy. Remember a time just a week ago with our life was completely different...


Just a picture during my walk...


Our house is now completely painted all around and the mason is working on the stone work around the border of the house.


The masons, Tomaso and Luigi working by the garage.


TOMA's mom's summer house when she was a child.

Blue is Home

Last night we brought Blue home. I thought the nurse was going to cry. When she brought him to us she said he was the sweetest cat. Later I asked if other cats were not as good-natured and she said that most scratch and hiss during treatments. He was just full of head-butts and rubs. My friend, James, told me about Puppy Pads in a conversation about something else before our trip--thank you! I bought a new soft, padded carrier and Puppy Pads and before we even left the hospital the Puppy Pad was soiled, but the carrier stayed clean. What a mess-saver! The new carrier made for a less stressful ride home (40 minutes) and will keep him more comfortable weekly when he goes for his chemotherapy.

Blue is weak, but bright and walking around, eating (thank goodness), and he just took his pills without a struggle. Right now he is purring. He seems to be giving his all to this fight.

He has his own bedroom and TOMA slept with him last night. We want to keep him segregated from the other two so they won't beat him up. During the weekend we are trying to spend as much time with him as possible. He just jumped over to look out the window, changed his mind and came back to the bed to rest.

I will never regret our decision to bring him home and give him treatment.

Baci e abbracci

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

At this point we are pretty sure Blue has lymphoma. He will have a biopsy later today to be 100% and then start chemotherapy if that is the case. He is just too active and full of personality during our visits to give up on him.

I experimented with my camera last night at the hospital and filmed my first video starring Blue. TOMA is thinking of nothing else and me the one with OCD is trying to give my mind breaks and concentrate on other things to make it through. Last night was a little tough because his liver values are up and his skin and gums have yellowed in the last 24 hours.

Last night at the hospital I took this photo. They let you spend as much time as you want visiting in different rooms. We brought a blanket and a pillow so we could be on the floor with him. TOMA was able to cuddle with him laying on the floor for a while. I think it was good for Blue's morale.


I really did not do too much drawing this year in Italy. It is depressing to be in a creative lull during vacation and aggravated me for a while, especially after carrying so many heavy art supplies over there (I obviously did not follow the rules I set for myself), but I did complete a pair of socks. I unknowingly had a snafu with the row counter and as I have not knit for so long did not follow the checkpoints for preventing such mistakes, so one sock is about an inch longer in the leg than the other. At least they are just for me, so no worries.


TOMA had to show me the difference in McDonald's in Italy while in Rome. Look at the cafe section and all of the sweets. Upstairs they had similar offerings as in the States as well as insalata caprese. One of the employees told me in English--no pictures after I snapped this.


Good news! This cat, Orsetto, made it another year! TOMA cooked for him this year and he was fed over 4 times a day. He came into the house and cuddled on our laps. We talked to a neighbor who reported that the Americans, who have now retired here in the States, fed him until they left (as we asked through a note last year). They promised to add him to the many they feed as they have in the past when he comes around. I hope he goes to their house, which is behind ours.


For some unknown reason I took this last KittenHead I made with me. She was a comfort when I was homesick. This is her on her way to San Foca, Puglia for a side trip.


The beach in San Foca.

Baci e abbracci

Monday, September 3, 2012

I'm Home

We came home on Saturday evening and within 5 minutes of being in the house we realized our cat Blue needed emergency vet care. We took him to a hospital and he has been there ever since. We visited him yesterday and today and he looks better, but we still do not know what is wrong with him. We are hoping for a liver infection that will clear up, but fear it is lymphoma. Lymphoma is treatable but it will shorten his life. We will know more after an ultra-sound tomorrow.

Thinking of Blue...


Baci e abbracci