Welcome to my coffee shop in the cyber neighborhood!

Welcome to my cyber neighborhood coffee shop! Grab a mug of your favorite
beverage and a cozy chair to read and comment a bit. Be sure to try a piece of

black forest cake or the tiramisu. Try both; cyber-cake is calorie free!

Contact Nani at chroniclesofnani@gmail.com

Monday, December 5, 2016

Happy Shopping

Saturday was a holiday shopping day for me. I like internet shopping because there aren't the crowds I didn't enjoy shopping in before the wheelchair. But honestly, I do miss the decorated malls and the peppermint lattes!

I would have been exhausted doing everything I did in person. I started surfing around noon. David was home so we shared talk, music and meals. There is no way he'd spend the whole day Christmas shopping with me and not be miserable. With me cyber shopping, he could play poker online and I could still show him things I saw in stores. I enjoyed the social part of shopping and he didn't have to step foot in the estrogen-filled stadium of "shop til you drop."

I'm doing Secret Santa with a women's group I'm in. My Santee is someone I've never met before. It's just like the Secret Santa Soirée was done only I don't have years of her blog to get to know the person I'm giving to. I just have her Facebook wall. We life-bloggers and craft bloggers share more details about our passions and preferences than is usually shared on Facebook. Still, between the Facebook Wall and her paragraph about who she is and the things she likes I was able to have several ideas that I could pursue to find just the right gift. I found it around 11 o'clock Saturday night. There was one other person that I was shopping for but I knew what I wanted to get, down to two possible pictures of it in my mind. I found one of the pictures I had in mind after a couple of hours but, as is a regular shopping thing, I found something else that I just loved. I hope it's opened with as big a smile as it gave me to find it. I'm behind on my page-a-day scrap goal for December already, but it was totally worth it to spend a day traveling all over internet stores and finding the right gifts for two different people!

When shopping the specialty stores to collect my traditional Italian goodies and other special things for the holidays, I like to find occasional edible presents and I also like to try something new myself. In years past I tried cranberry mustard, rum cake cookies and even chicken tortellini.

This year I tried a jar of creama di pistacchio, pistachio cream, from Supermarket Italy. At first glance, it's a jar of green goo. It's greener than I was expecting from the photograph online but since it was creamier, than Lake Erie water during an algae bloom, I decided I wasn't so grossed out that I couldn't give it a try.

O-M-G... I swiped my finger on the pistachio cream that was on the lid and the taste is amazing! If you like pistachios imagine peanut butter only with pistachios. The flavor is a little more pungent than peanut butter but that's because pistachios are a little more pungent than peanuts. Where I could take a spoon and just scoop peanut butter out and eat it, I really think I need crackers or biscuits for the pistachio butter. But, oh my, it is good!

I talked to my dad last night and told him about it. I also wanted help on the pronunciation of pistacchio, pistachio in Italian. Pop said, no kidding, that he didn't remember ever saying pistacchio when he was a kid and only remembers saying it in English. Since I'm not bilingual, I've never thought about there being things you'd learn about while speaking in the new language that you didn't know the word for in your original tongue. I was told that when I was learning to talk I had to learn the English word butterfly because I first saw butterflies often at the park with my grandmother. Noni called them "farfalle" and I didn't know that word was a different language than the one I was learning. Of course since I don't actually remember that one, I don't remember how it felt. I still think it would be more strange to an adult. I also think it's a bigger deal to me than Pop.

Oh, we decided because of the vowel sounds and double-c, it is pronounced
| pee-STAH-chee-o |

Thursday, December 1, 2016

Christmas Cocoa

Welcome to the 2016 Worldwide Christmas Scrapbooking Freebies!

If you are a visitor from the Worldwide Christmas Scrapbooking Freebies blog, welcome! If you are a regular reader here who will enjoy some fabulous Christmas scrapbooking freebies, by all means click that logo to check out the great holiday gifts! Regardless of how you got here, if you download my mini kit, enjoy!

Here is the palette I used for this year's kit.

Without further ado, here is Christmas Cocoa!

Click image to download at Mediafire

This kit is customizable. If you saw the sample layout yesterday, the hot Chocolate mugs work as coffee mugs too. The mugs, steam, marshmallows and whipped cream topping are separate elements, so you can dress up your warm beverage the way that best accents your photos and journaling. It is a mini kit, so visit back! I do think it could use a couple flowers, maybe an alpha or something too. :)

For many of us, we NEED the holiday season to save 2016. I hope all the great scrapbooking freebies are a good inspiration to send the year out with a loving surge.

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Kicking Off The Holidays

The holiday season has officially kicked off. We went to Michigan the Sunday before Thanksgiving to have our Thanksgiving dinner would Pop and Aunt Judy. Thursday was a Play football day at home with David. Thursday night I started my Christmas holiday shopping. Even for a homebody who does most of my shopping online, Black Friday sales were abundant.

Today I watched Rudolph The Red Nosed Reindeer while David was at work, making the Christmas season official for my inner child. David is not a Rudolf fan at all, so Rudolph, however necessary, is a solo event for me.

The other thing that I did today was this scrapbook page:

Credits: Christmas Cocoa buy Digitalegacies Designs

He1he… my fellow scrappers can sleep on that. Christmas Cocoa Will be released tomorrow morning as my contribution to Worldwide Christmas Scrapbooking Freebies this year!

More in the morning…

Friday, November 11, 2016

Checking In

There has been so, so, so much going on! Don't worry, I am NOT “hanging in the balance" or anything like that, but I can say that I much prefer going to the local hospital during the day when the good coffee bar is open. There're a few things coming up in my too many doctors world that should make the future much more bright. In the meantime I'll be using the last month of the year to really plan for getting my act together next year. I just have to remember “baby steps."

I will, or won’t, share more details about hospitals later. The only thing I'll say now about hospitals is ladies, make sure you get your mammograms! Do it for yourself. Do it for the people who love you. And for those of us older ladies, yeah, every year. This is why the quality of the coffee at the hospital you choose is so important. After a mammogram I've EARNED a real latte and one of the BEST banana muffins in the world!

I'm getting ready to start work on my Worldwide Christmas Scrapbooking Freebies gift for this year. I'm not totally sure what it will be yet but it will be available here on December 1.

In the meantime, I stumbled upon a set of templates in my hard drive. These were in my Scrap Bird Store in 2009. It took me a minute to remember to them! It's a simple set of templates that is now on my MediaFire Account to share!

click on image to go to MediaFire

I hope you enjoy the templates. I'll be back soon!

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

American Hamburgers

Nani, Noni and Mom, circa 1983

So I'm not going to make excuses for not keeping up on things in the blog-world. The truth is I'm still having some problems hit and miss which includes the height of the new chair not being able to comfortably get in front of the computer, so I'm not on it unless I'm lounging back in the recliner. I still need to form a working normal for myself. I've been feeling like a bit of a hermit so for the most part when I get on the computer, I'm scrapbooking. That doesn't mean that I'm totally a hermit. I'll check my email and I visit Facebook, but I don't post a lot of anywhere right now. I am always getting on my own case for that and I'm trying to inspire myself to become involved with the world again. Politics has been very frustrating and almost painful. I post a little about that because I'm ripping my hair out with the idiocy that's going on in the presidential election this year. There seems to be a lot of people that are not fact-checking, they're just reacting to false statements. It frightens my "ugly-cripple-anchor baby" brain. It's just going to take some time before I'm ready to venture out into the world again.

I was looking at digital coupons to add to my Kroger card and one of the coupon choices was this:

White Castle condiments at Kroger?

It made me think about how long it's been since I've been to a White Castle. Ruthie, my aide, said that she hadn't been to a White Castle in 12 to 13 years, or half of her life. For me I don't think I've been to a White Castle since my grandmother passed in 1989 that got us both reminiscing about White Castle.

For me, White Castle was the American hamburger. What I mean is there was a White Castle on the road on the way to my grandmother’s house. In the Italian grandma tradition, Noni cooked... everything… constantly! Of course friends and family visiting, especially family, would encourage her every now and then to take a day off and just let us bring dinner in. She would have none of that, also in the good Italian grandma fashion, she loved cooking and cooking for people. But every now and then Noni would actually feel like taking a day off. When she wanted the day off she would say "I don't feel like cooking, let's get a bag of American hamburgers." You see, to Noni's palette White Castle hamburgers were the quintessential American food. (Keep in mind the actual Italian food is NOTHING like Sbarro or even Olive Garden.) So to me White Castle is a wonderful memory of "Noni's Day Off."

White Castle available in the frozen food? I had to check out the White Castle website. The last time I ate at the White Castle the onion chips were relatively new. Now you can get all kinds of things at White Castle! They have chicken and fish and a full breakfast menu. And then the sides; it's not just fries or onion chips anymore. Now you can get mozzarella sticks cheesy fries and fish nibblers. It's just amazing that White Castle is still competitive, keeping up with the fast food market and it still is that corner hamburger stand where you can get your sliders. Part of me would like to stop at White Castle for old times sake. But the closest one to here is about an hour away. Maybe it's a flavor that's better kept in my memory anyway.