“Follow your bliss and the universe will open doors for you where there were only walls.”

balloon yellow sunshine blue sky sea

Ciao, bella!

Uffa, che palle! Wet weather… waking up early… a terminally dull task at work… Sometimes it just seems like there’s so much to whinge about, doesn’t it? I’m guilty of being a champion complainer when I feel as if life isn’t going exactly how I wish it would! But the problem with complaining is that anything more than a quick vent to a friend is super-counterproductive. It just makes you even crosser, and so mired in gloom and doom that you can’t muster the energy to fabulous-ize your circumstances!

Remember that dream life love list? When you’re preoccupied with packing as many things you adore into your life as possible, you just don’t have the time to carp on about, let alone notice, the parts that aren’t absolutely perfect. Even better – call it the power of positive thinking, call it God, or call it Gregory Peck looking out for us [as I am wont to do!] – once you get proactive about bringing affascinante things into your life, the serendipitous times really start to roll…

bardot italy boat

Just take the week I’ve had!

I was feeling fed up of constantly griping about grey skies and my mind-numbing 9-5 schedule – it was high time to stop complaining and inject some Sparkles & Crumbs into my set-up! I thought about the things I adore, long for, and look forward to, and realised how head-over-heels happy anything to do with Italy makes me! I’m utterly in love with the lifestyle, the language, the food, the fashion, the cuisine, the climate, the architecture, and the over-the-top emotions! Looking back at photographs from my visits to Rome always brings back a flood of felice memories, and the feeling of high spirits and at home-ness that I only get in the Eternal City.


rowing summer italian girl

spanish steps rome vintage

“What is the fatal charm of Italy? What do we find there that can be found nowhere else? I believe it is a certain permission to be human, which other places, other countries, lost long ago.”
- Erica Jong

In other words, spending plenty of time in Italy has always been pretty high up on my ‘Dream Life Love List’ – and to do that, I should really learn how to speak Italian!

“To have another language is to possess a second soul.”

Hence, I determined to bring a bit of Italian into my life – by relaunching my language-learning efforts, and setting myself an aim: to be able to converse passably in Italian by the time I return to Rome for my birthday! I’ve ordered coursebooks and worksheets, started listening to my old audio CDs whilst I waltz to and from work, and signed up with Livemocha [it’s super-fabulous – and free!]. I’m even setting up a little Italiophile group in a local Italian bistro with an equally enthusiastic friend to help each other practice, and advertising for other like-minded linguistic hopefuls to join us! I’m getting zealous!

italian couple pizza happy

And guess what? As soon as I started taking action, amazing things fell into place!

The day I took my first lesson on Livemocha, I was meandering through the market-place on my lunch break, getting super-excited about my spring-time sojourn to Roma, when I spotted a flash of something spectacular hanging on the rails of my favourite vintage clothing stall [ballgowns and fur coats galore!]. I stepped closer… and unearthed a midnight blue silk tunic by Dolce & Gabbana, screenprinted with gorgeous theological iconography – just perfect for posing in front of the Pantheon and touring St Peter’s! A sign!

Then I was stocking up on hot chocolate ingredients in the local supermarket, and happened to see a sign on the noticeboard advertising a super-affordable course, teaching Italian “through movies and music” – swoon! I’m all signed up!

And finally, I stopped by our chosen spot for Italian sessions this evening to romance myself with a pre-Zumba bolognese and a good book – and when I got chatting to the ultra-effusive Italian waitress, she enthusiastically offered to help us hone our speaking skills! [I can now order a glass of red wine, and a slice of chocolate cake served hot with ice cream!]

roman holiday poster

So here’s to Roman Holidays and diving headlong into daydreams, darlings!

“I have learned, that if one advances confidently in the direction of his dreams, and endeavours to live the life he has imagined, he will meet with a success unexpected in common hours.”
Henry David Thoreau


lions rome summer


 Love, red lipstick and lion statues xxx


  1. Darling! How lovely! You go girl!!

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