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Destinations, Dreams and Dogs - International adventure with a fast-track family (& dogs) of Old World values, adopting the Russian-Italian-American good life on the go…!

Health & Beauty


In The Valley of the Shadow of Death

My heart goes out to those who are in the waning years of their life. Often, their families try to arrange the best care possible— whether at home or in a retirement or assisted care facility. It’s a tough call. My mother-in-law has been living in such an assisted-living home for the past five years….


Who Controls Your Future?

If you asked me who controls my future, I would say, bottom line: God. But no so fast. We have a part to play, as well. Which is both the terrifying, as well as the exhilarating, aspect of the equation. When we miss it occasionally and then suffer the consequences, that’s not God. That’s us!…


Wrinkle-Free Sleeping

And the business that I tried to turn down yesterday has returned today. A 30-year-old PhD needs me, plus his whole team, which causes some stress, along with another group of clients reaching out to me, whom I also try to dissuade from working with me, for similar reasons. I’m not sure it’s a great…


“Problems” Hold You Back? The Art of Resiliency

Maybe it’s me. I deal with many different kinds of people in regular professions or in volunteer positions. It always amazes me how, when folks have problems, their entire life seems to ground to a halt. Now, believe me, I understand all about life-threatening illnesses and the time a family member needs to devote to…


Monday Mottoes – #200

This is our 200th blog post in the Monday Mottoes series— time for something different, maybe a departure from productivity, success, business…. Around our home, we’ve been thinking a lot about friendship. Our oldest daughter, Mashenka, 19, had a girlfriend she had met long ago at camp visiting with us for most of the last…


Doctor in the House? No—They’re All on Vacation-!

It’s across the board (get it—? Board-certifiied??? lol- this early in the morning, I’m making myself laugh-), doctors are on vacation. Whatever you do, don’t become ill during July or August, because you’ll be up the creek and in deep trouble, for sure. Everywhere one turns, there’s a physician on vacay, if my interactions are…


The House is on Fire!

Yes, I know, these kind of things never happen to you. But in our house…. Long story short, yesterday we had a kitchen fire. Benedetto had started heating some oil in a frying pan after a very busy day when he was preparing some things for dinner. (All I can say is that I am…


Analyzing Dog Poop

This is what my life has come to, analyzing pet poop. One of our little Scotties seems to have a problem, he whines and cries and can’t seem to get comfortable. Usually, it’s when the rest of the family is out, so I think he’s depressed and moping around. But if I ask if he…


Early Eclectic Home Furnishings

I have always believed that my hodgepodge of a house or two stems from the fact that taste changes over time. What you accumulated yesterday may not suit you today. And rather than get rid of all of the furnishings, you keep them and they pile up. Not smart. Now, however, I have the chance…


The Pros and Cons of Humidity

Can you say, “A dewy glow?” No, honestly, I hate humidity. Except that I don’t use the word “hate”. So… I intensely dislike humidity. Wreaks havoc with the hair, you know. Grows mold in the shower. Breeds mosquitos and mustiness. On the other hand, it mists and moisturizes the skin. If hot enough, it clears…