Artistic Venice

Artistic Venice

One of my favorite things to do in a new place is to duck into a shop that promises work from local artisans. I like to explore the raw materials of the region, the subject matter, and the skills they employ. These things in combination often give special insights...
Celebrating Italian Cuisine

Celebrating Italian Cuisine

Italian cuisine is simple. My Italian friend gasped when she opened up my heavily stocked spice cupboard typical of American households. “Why would anyone need so many spices?!” she complained. (After visiting her kitchen I clearly understood why she was overwhelmed....
Local connections in Italy: Handmade Deruta Ceramics

Local connections in Italy: Handmade Deruta Ceramics

It pays to have local connections. They throw up the door to experiences you might not have otherwise. Take this experience in Deruta, Italy, for example.   We’d been in Italy for several days when our local friend Dawn said she’d like to introduce us to her...
Four Reasons to Visit Arezzo, Italy

Four Reasons to Visit Arezzo, Italy

“Florence without all the crowds” is how someone once described Arezzo. And it’s true. Arezzo is home to upscale shops, fine restaurants and quaint cafés. Yet it can boast of Renaissance Art and amazing Etruscan history that seems to pop out at you...