Monday, April 24, 2017

The Rutherford Grill In Napa Valley Is Always A Favorite!

Always a favorite place to stop when in the Napa area.

Yesterday's meal was I need to figure out how to make it.

Thursday, April 20, 2017

Simple Suggestions To Get The Most Out Of Your Trip Abroad

I've posted several suggestions to get the most out of your trip. I'll continue to post those...

For today, take a look at these simple suggestions...

Map your location
Most of us already check street maps a few times before a trip to make sure our hotel is close to downtown or a planned drive isn't too long to do in a day -- but there are many more riches to be found if you spend a little more time with a mapping app.

Preview the traffic
Before I fly into an airport, I check the route from the airport (or the rental car garage) to my lodging.

Read a history book
Sure, you’ve probably read guide books. But, this can help you gain appreciation and understanding of the various tourist landmarks you might visit. That way they won’t seem like just another thing to gawk at and move on.

Look at photos
Again, take a step beyond the guide book and check out some extra photos.

Learn a few phrases

I find it a good idea to learn several phrases. Please, thank you, and hello go a long way. For me, I learn even more. I want to be able to read the menu and street signs. If you can’t speak the language…at least smile.

Monday, April 17, 2017

Help...I've Lost My Wallet! Some Travel Tips

Lost your wallet when traveling?

Here are a few tips if you think it’s lost.

Contact your bank to change your PIN and cancel and replace your ATM card.

Contact your credit card companies. You should be traveling with only one or two, but call them immediately.

File a report with the hotel where you’re staying, the local police, and anyone else your concierge recommends.

You will need to contact the DMV to replace your driver’s license when you return home.

You will need to contact any insurance companies, if you carry those cards with you.

Pay close attention in the next few weeks to your bank statements, credit cards, and anything else that doesn’t look right.

To back up a few steps…what are some things you really don’t need in your wallet when you travel?

Your Social Security card…leave it in a safe place at home.

Any cheat cheats with PINs or passwords, especially for bank accounts.

Blank checks…not a good idea.

Your Medicare card…after all, it has your Social Security number on it. Instead, make a copy, block our several digits of your SSN, and keep that in your wallet. Hospitals can look you up if they need to.

Saturday, April 15, 2017

Do You Have a Favorite Travel Purse?

When you travel...what purse do you like? Is it RFID? Is it large enough to hold everything? Or, is it small enough for just the basics?

I've had different ones over the years. Some I liked...some, not so much.

Recently, I came across a site with stylish, yet functional and safe purses for travel.

I will be trying this on at least two different types of trips.

Stay tuned for how I fill it...and how I like it. I'll give you all the details then.

Thursday, April 13, 2017

Cookery Course With A Difference In Italy

L’arte di mangiar bene, the art of eating well, lies at the heart of the Italian lifestyle — and that’s just what you’ll enjoy during this cookery week. You’ll learn the secrets of healthy eating from The Watermill team, among them an Italian grandmother, an organic farmer and our gardener’s wife! You’ll choose freshest local ingredients (many from our own gardens) and prepare them deliciously. We’ll visit markets, vegetable gardens, olive groves and vineyards.

The Italians are the healthiest people in Europe and this is due not just the quality of the food, but to la bella vita italiana, the relaxed lifestyle which means taking time to talk to friends and to enjoy their company, not least in convivial meals around the dining table. You’ll be savouring all that, too.

You’ll stay in stylish bedrooms in elegant buildings around the sunlit courtyard. The mill’s gardens, secluded millstream paths and riverside walks are all yours to enjoy.  This is the art of eating – and living – well!

On this cookery course with a difference, you’ll gain hands-on experience of cooking mouth-watering, healthy Italian meals with the freshest ingredients. The emphasis will be on culinary techniques that will help propel the healthy Italian lifestyle into your own home.

Our team is led by Lois Breckon, who has masterminded the Watermill menus for many years, and her friend and colleague Ingrid Fabbian, an expert on nutrition, as well on the preparation of home-made pasta and bread. Our Italian experts include our cook, grandmother Mirella Musetti, professional chef Angelina Benedetti, organic farmer Federica La Sala and our gardener’s wife Marida Tognini. We will share their decades of culinary and horticultural experience, based on knowledge passed through the generations of Italians.

Your hands-on cooking sessions and our daily demonstrations will cover many aspects of the Italian and Tuscan cucina, from appetisers (antipasti) to after-dinner biscuits (biscottini) and much else in between; from pane to pasta, through main courses, to homemade puddings and ice cream.

There will also be trips out to markets and food producers, to an ice-cream parlour and a hill-top gourmet restaurant, and a panigacci evening (rounds of unleavened bread brought hot to your table and served with local hams and cheeses.) So, as well as learning l’arte di mangiar bene you’ll also sample the vita bella italiana.

Everything is included in the cost of your coking at the watermill:  all tuition, accommodation (including all linen and towels), pre-dinner aperitifs, all meals and wines (including outings to charming local restaurants) and all local transportation (including transfers to Pisa airport and an excursion by train to Lucca or the Cinque Terre). You get to Pisa, Italy, we do the rest!

Please go to to learn more.