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January 2009 Archives

January 2, 2009

PhotoHunt: Hope


This week's theme is "hope."
Perfect theme to begin a New Year!

peace flag

All over Venice, you see these flags...a lovely way for people to share their hopes for peace. Most of them are in Italian (pace) but I saw one in English too.


I hope that all of you have a very Happy New Year!

You can find more Photo Hunters here.

January 4, 2009

SSS Week 5: Fish Soup


sundayslowsoupersAnother winning recipe! This soup was created by Cindy of Baked Alaska (a blog about cooking, eating, and living in Alaska). It was so delicious and such a nice change from all the heavy holiday carbs I've been eating for the past several weeks.

I'm so impressed that Cindy created this recipe herself. The broth is perfect and is one that could be used as a base for many other soups (I think it would be perfect for minestrone). I did modify this one because my local grocery didn't have any decent-looking fish (and I didn't have time to drive to Whole Foods) so instead of fish, I put a can of whole clams in. It was great! I love the spiciness of this soup, and the fennel really gives it a unique flavor.

Cindy's recipe is below, along with my modifications.

A list of the other Slow Soupers is here. More Slow Souping discussion along with other great recipes can be found on the Slow Talk Food Forum.

Next up: Caldo Verde (Green Soup).

Continue reading "SSS Week 5: Fish Soup" »

January 5, 2009

Fog and Sun


Almost everyone takes a photo of this classic Venetian view, with the church of San Giorgio Maggiore in the distance behind the gondolas parked next to the Piazzetta San Marco. This is the winter version of the scene, taken early one morning when it was sunny and foggy at the same time. The fog soon burned off but it looked pretty cool for a while.

January 9, 2009

PhotoHunt: Aftermath


This week's theme is "aftermath."

These photos show the Aftermath of a Hurricane. Last fall, the remnants of a hurricane came though and while there wasn't any wind or destruction, we did have a couple of days of torrential rain.

About a week later, my yard had turned into a forest of mushrooms. There were hundreds of them of so many shapes, sizes, and colors. It was very cool and for a couple of weeks, I went out every day and took shroom photos. Here are a few of my faves:



A few more below:

Continue reading "PhotoHunt: Aftermath" »

January 12, 2009

Well (like a basket)


One of the things on my "want to see" list was this unique 15th century well-head that's carved to look like a basket. I'd read about it in a couple of books, and it was funny because it was very close to the B&B where I've stayed three times but was in a dead-end corte that I'd never visited. It's so very cool-looking and is a perfect example of one of the things I love about Italy...anything can be art and even utilitarian objects can be beautiful. By contrast, the well in my yard here in NC is less than inspiring. :)

You can find this one in Corte Gregolina in San Marco.


Continue reading "Well (like a basket)" »

January 13, 2009

Sant' Apollonia (and the Diocesan Museum)

This is such a lovely and magical spot. The 12th century cloister of Sant’ Apollonia is the oldest surviving cloister in Venice and today is part of the Museo Diocesano di Venezia (Diocesan Museum of Sacred Art).

sant apollonia

The cloister was part of a Benedictine monastery adjacent to the now demolished church of SS. Filippo e Giacomo. The monastery was built for monks who originally resided on the lagoon island of Ammiana, which sank after the Christmas Day earthquake of 1223, and so the monks moved to Venice. Sinking islands and monasteries…it makes me think about scuba-diving archeologists and what all they might find in the waters of that lagoon.


Continue reading "Sant' Apollonia (and the Diocesan Museum)" »

January 15, 2009

Happy Birthday to Mason!

My nephew Mason is eight years old today! Here he is a couple of weeks ago, holding Maria, the kitten that he and his brother rescued from the middle of the highway and brought to me.


Both of them are growing up so fast and while it's truly a wonderful blessing to watch young beings grow, sometimes I just want to freeze the clock...it's all going by so fast.

The big birthday bash is this weekend and because the boys are going through a big-time Indiana Jones phase, there's going to be an 8-foot long python at the party. Mason told me that I can hold it and have my picture made with it if I want. Everyone at the party can have their picture made with the snake, he said, and boy is he excited about that.

I love being an aunt more than anything, but I'm less than enthused about going to a party with an enormous snake. But I will be there with bells on. I'm gonna take my camera and use that as an excuse to NOT hold the snake. :)

This was taken eight months ago, on the day they found the kitten:


I subscribe to a "thought of the day" email service and after I put this post up, this quote came in and was so perfect that I decided to add it to this entry.

Children and animals are supremely attractive because they are honest and they live in the innocence we long to recapture. -- Alan Cohen

January 16, 2009

PhotoHunt: Hat(s)


This week's theme is "hat(s)."

Here is part of my friend Susan's collection of old hats (and heads).


And from the same collection:


Happy Weekend!
You can find more Photo Hunters and join the hunt here.

January 17, 2009

Scuola dell' Angelo Custode

Scuola dell' Angelo

This lovely pink building is one of a handful of Protestant churches in Venice, the Chiesa Evangelica Alemanna or Evangelical Lutheran church.

Located in campo SS. Apostoli in Cannaregio, it was built in 1713 for the Scuola dell’ Angelo Custode (confraternity of the Guardian Angel), one of many charitable institutions that existed in the Venetian Republic. After Napoleon’s conquest, the scuola was suppressed, and the building was bought by Protestant German merchants who had been kicked out of their huge Grand Canal building (Fontego dei Tedeschi, which is now the Venice post office).

This marble Archangel Raphael and Tobias over the entrance is by Heinrich Meyring, best known for his work on the crazy façade of the church of San Moise.

Scuola dell 'Angelo, Raphael and Tobias

Continue reading "Scuola dell' Angelo Custode" »

January 18, 2009

The Birthday Party


So here is Mason, with a lizard on his head, an albino king snake around his neck, and a python "belt" around his waist. He had a great time at his birthday party!

There were THREE snakes at this party, two turtles, three lizards, and a tree frog.

Moving on to the mammal kingdom, we had a hamster, a guinea pig, a rabbit, and a ferret.

I took 200 photos at this crazy party and I'll post a few more soon. Right now, I've got to go watch the Obama "We are One" concert. Life is good. :)

January 19, 2009

A few more party photos

Touching the tortoise:


My younger nephew Davis with the hamster and his friend (wearing Davis' Indiana Jones hat) with the guinea pig:


Mason got a lot of presents but his favorite seemed to be this book called "How To Draw Animals." He is such an animal lover and he's a good little artist too. As you can see, some of his buddies were very interested in it too. I love seeing kids interested in books (and art!).

how to draw animals

Continue reading "A few more party photos" »

Higher Ground

yeswedidTomorrow is the big day...so exciting that it's finally here! I've had that Stevie Wonder song, Higher Ground, stuck in my head all day since hearing it at the "We Are One" concert last night. Gonna keep on tryin...Till I reach the highest ground. What a great song for a "celebration of American renewal" as Obama said last night. I can't wait to hear what he has to say tomorrow.

I'm taking the day off so I can watch every minute of this Celebration. I've never watched an Inauguration before! But of course until last year, I'd never given money to a political candidate or gone to a campaign rally either. I'm pretty emotional about all of this and part of me still can't believe it happened. Every time I think about the fact that we actually elected this amazing man, my heart fills up. I have a feeling that there will be many tears of joy shed by Team Obama tomorrow!

He's inheriting an ungodly mess and I don't have unrealistic expectations about any kind of quick fix, but I think he's a bright and progressive leader with a kind heart who will put together a team of people that will get us on the road to healing. We need an inspirational leader in the worst way and now we've got one. Blessings to him and his family.

My prayer is that more people all over the world will wake up to the beauty of diversity and realize that it's a wonderful and infinitely interesting blessing that there are people of different cultures, races, religions, and beliefs on this planet that we all share. How much we can learn from each other once we let go of old worn-out fears of those who are different from us in some way. We ARE all in this together and it really feels like tomorrow is a big step forward, not just for the USA but for the world as a whole.


Continue reading "Higher Ground" »

January 21, 2009

Blessing our new President


What a great day it was! The ceremony was so beautiful with so many unforgettable moments, songs, and images. And when I woke up this morning and heard on TV that he was already at work in the Oval Office, I couldn't have been happier.

This was forwarded in an email - I think it's making the rounds in cyberspace but I wanted to share it here. It's an inter-faith grassroots blessing and prayer circle for our President. Yesterday when he got out of the car and was walking in the parade, I immediately said a prayer for his safety. Then later I read this email and it just feels like a great thing to do.

We feel it’s important to extend a special blessing of spiritual support and protection to President Barack Obama, and we invite you to join in with us in whatever way works for you: prayer, meditation, ritual blessing, song, affirmations, whatever…

Let your heart-light and conscious blessing surround President Obama, nurture and sustain him, gently yet firmly protect him from all reactive, misguided intent, and support him with the spirit of mutual empowerment, hope, freedom, and change that he is bringing so profoundly into American politics and, truly, into the social contract of all humankind.

Whatever you do, however you do it, we suggest that you make a point of dedicating a few minutes each day to this blessing, support, and extension of spiritual protection to President Barack Obama. Any time that works for you, whether it’s a regular time each day or not, will contribute to our united efforts.

Continue reading "Blessing our new President" »

January 22, 2009

Calle Stella

A fairy tale corner of Venice, this little courtyard has a charming blue shrine with flowers and lace and a colorful Madonna inside, a nice vera da pozzo with plants on top, and fluttering laundry. Pretty perfect!




January 23, 2009

PhotoHunt: Chipped


This week's theme is "chipped." This theme is kinda challenging! I'm curious to see what everyone does for this one. Here's what I came up with (one in Venice, and one in NC).

A canal in Venice. The rising water has chipped the stucco off that yellow building.


And here in NC, a truck on a used car lot. It's "chips" not "chipped" but hey, like I said, this theme is hard!


Have a good weekend everyone. And Happy Chinese New Year (year of the Ox)!

You can find more Photo Hunters and join the hunt here.

January 25, 2009

Sunday Slow Soupers: Split Pea and Green Pea Soup

sundayslowsoupersAnother wonderful recipe! This one came from MarciaB of Happy Trails to Us. I jumped ahead on the souping schedule and made this one on Inauguration Day which was also a Snow Day here in the Tar Heel state. I love being snowed in, probably because it doesn't happen very often, and this soup was perfect for a cold and white winter day.

It's the best split pea soup I've ever had - so easy and delicious, and the green peas and herbs really add a lot of flavor. Recipe and my modifications are below.


Continue reading "Sunday Slow Soupers: Split Pea and Green Pea Soup" »

January 28, 2009

Mason's Art

This is for Maria I...in her comment on my Ruskin post, she asked to see one of my nephew's drawings. He did this one about a year ago, and the next time that I'm over at his house, I'll get something he's done more recently. But I was very impressed by this one because you can tell that he was starting to get a real grasp on perspective. I should start dating this stuff on the back, but I know that this one is older because we have definitely moved out of the SpiderMan phase and are now firmly into the Indiana Jones phase. :)

mason spiderman

January 29, 2009

John Ruskin (1819-1900)

“Among the many strange things that have befallen Venice, she has had the good fortune to become the object of a passion to a man of splendid genius, who has made her his own, and in doing so has made her the world’s.” – Henry James

Ruskin plaque

This memorial plaque is on the Zattere on the front of Pensione La Calcina, where Ruskin stayed for four months in 1877 on one of his many extended trips to Venice. Here's the translation:

John Ruskin
Lived in this house, 1877

High Priest of Art
In our Stones and in our San Marco
In almost every monument of Italy
He sought at one and the same time
The craftsman’s soul and the soul of the people

Every marble, every bronze, every canvas
Each of these things proclaimed to him
That beauty is religion
If the virtue of man inspire it
And the people’s reverence accept it.

The Council of Venice, In Gratitude
January 26, 1900

Continue reading "John Ruskin (1819-1900)" »

January 30, 2009

PhotoHunt: Furry


This week's theme is "furry."

My cats can't believe that I'm not posting one of the hundreds of photos I have taken of them for "furry"!

But I couldn't resist the green furry-looking moss on these old statues I saw on the island of Torcello in the Venetian lagoon. I might have to do "Furry, Part Two" next week to keep the cats happy though. :)



You can find more Photo Hunters and join the hunt here.

Happy Super Bowl weekend everyone!

January 31, 2009

Second Annual February Blog Extravaganza


So for the second year in a row, a group of Slow Travelers are going to blog every day for the next month (we chose February because it's the shortest month!). Thanks to Kim of What I Really Think for making this nice logo for us. Kim is my hero for many reasons (and it's not only because she provides blog tech support to all of us).

And check out the very cool "Blog Everyday" graphic that Trekcapri made for her Photo of the Month!

This blog challenge was so much fun last year especially because I made some really good friends in the process. Over twice as many people are participating this year, which is great. If anyone else wants to join in the fun, please do. And no pressure about this, and no stress if any of us miss a day here or there. And remember that you can always back-date a post. :)

I've got tons of photos and stories from my recent trip to Venice plus I'm going to mix in some "North Carolina local colour" posts and who knows what else. And of course, there's PhotoHunt and Slow Souping. And my crazy cats. :)

Here's the gang...what an interesting and diverse group of people who all love to travel. We've got an American living in Paris, a Norwegian living in DC, a former islander living in the Sonoran desert, a handful of cool Canadian neighbors, and my fellow Americans from sea to shining sea, plus out in the sea (Hawaii) ! Lots of great reading and photos on these blogs.

As the Seasons Change
Happy Trails to Us
Best Trip Ever
Baked Alaska<
Home is where my bed is
shave ice & gelato
What I Really Think
Jerry's Thoughts, Musings, and Rants!
A Journey of a Thousand Miles...
Postcards from the Trail
Wanderings and Wonderings
Follow My Bliss
That's My Story...And I'm Stickin' To It!
Palmabella's Passions
Destination Anywhere
Keep your Feet in the Street
Whistlestop Cafe Cooking
Trekcapri's Blog
A Winelover's Wanderings
Let us go then, you and I
My Place in the Sun
In and Out of the Garden
Vagabond Artist
The Trail's Our Thing
Old Shoes - New Trip
Candi's Corner: Wanderlust and Passions
Churches in Venice

Happy blogging to everyone. I'm psyched and ready to go!

This page contains all entries posted to Churches in Venice in January 2009. They are listed from oldest to newest.

December 2008 is the previous archive.

February 2009 is the next archive.

Many more can be found on the main index page or by looking through the archives.


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