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Buon Giorno!

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Finally settled into our villa in Italy after several travel days.
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It was chilly in Belgium, where we landed after flying overnight (I could not sleep a wink). We spent one drizzly day in the beautiful old city of Brugges.



Then we visited the heartbreaking American Military Cemetery in Luxembourg, one of the many in Europe where, in this one alone, 5000 young boys are buried.


After a longer drive than we expected, we arrived at our villa in the Piedmont Region of northern Italy.
We are high on a hill overlooking the beautiful village of Castiglione Tinella, surrounded for miles by hills and vineyards, with a distant view of the snow topped Italian Alps.
The house is huge (7 bedrooms) although it's only the two of us. We are here for two weeks and are having fun learning our way around.
Here's the view from my kitchen door.

We are 6 hours ahead of North America, which makes it difficult to stay in touch with family, although we did manage one Skype session with the grandkids the other day.
We have NO phone in the house, which is strange, and the internet is maddeningly slow.
All in all, we are having a blast!
The weather is much better in Italy but I would appreciate another 5 degrees or so, if someone could arrange that for me.

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  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

OLDERDANDRT 4/26/2012 11:59AM

    Beautiful! I'll see what I can do about those few extra degrees for you! emoticon emoticon

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PATRICIA4472 4/25/2012 8:07AM

    So happy for you! Have a spectacular time!

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MIMICOTO 4/24/2012 11:42PM

    Sounds 'si bella'!!! Thank you so much for sharing the pics!!!!

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CINDYWAGNER1 4/24/2012 11:40PM

    emoticonSounds wonderful. Looks beautiful, too. Enjoy your time!

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BARBEQUESUE 4/24/2012 10:42PM

    Thanks for sharing your travels and phtos.
What wonderful sites you must be seeing, have a wonderful time.
Enjoy it all!
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N_STITCHES 4/24/2012 5:40PM

  Thanks for popping in and saying "hi" and sharing some pics. Have fun! Looks wonderful!!......Patti

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DEBBIEANNE1124 4/24/2012 11:32AM

    Nice pictures!
Enjoy!

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HIPPICHICK1 4/24/2012 11:21AM

    Wow! What a view from the kitchen door. Enjoy.
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MEXGAL1 4/24/2012 10:37AM

    So great to hear from you! Glad you had a safe journey even though you did not sleep. I too have trouble sleeping on the plane. My DH sleeps as soon as we take off.
Gosh your area looks great. Hope you continue to have a wonderful trip.
Enjoy!
Peanut

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LITTLEFARMMOMMA 4/24/2012 9:16AM

    WONDERFUL, Elizabeth! Absolutely wonderful! emoticon

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PHOENIX40S 4/24/2012 8:56AM

    How beautiful!

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BEECHNUT13 4/24/2012 8:47AM

    Aw, have fun! I would love to visit Italy sometime.

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BETHGILLIGAN 4/24/2012 7:39AM

    Awesome!! Sounds wonderful!!

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_UMAMI_ 4/24/2012 7:23AM

    Jellus!!! emoticon

Travels are one of life's most worthwhile investments, IMO. Enjoy!!

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DOOBRIE 4/24/2012 6:20AM

    Great to hear from you - wonderful pics and a lovely photo of you! I hope you kept away from the chocolate in Brugges. I know I couldn't.

Here's some sunshine and warmer temperatures for you:

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Comment edited on: 4/24/2012 6:22:04 AM

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SHRINKINGSHERI 4/24/2012 6:01AM

    Beautiful...have a great time!!!

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SEPTEMBERSPIRIT 4/24/2012 4:24AM

    Sounds like you are having a blast - and perhaps the lack of a telephone and connectivity is nature's way of making sure you enjoy your time away : )

Love the pics!!

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NEW-CAZ 4/24/2012 4:00AM

    Glad you're enjoying yourself Liz.

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TODAY!

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Today is the day! emoticon

DH and I are leaving right after lunch- flying to PHL then Brussels, renting a car and finding a Belgium waffle (DH's fervent wish) then meandering through Brussels and France for two days before arriving at our villa in Italy on Saturday.

We did a house swap for our little house in Anguilla
www.jasminevilla.com

We will be in Italy for two weeks, then reverse the whole trip, meandering back to Brussels to fly home on May 7th.

We don't have any reservations- we know just a few words in other languages- we both love the adventure of traveling this way.

I will take plenty of pictures (with my little camera) and share later.
I may do some minimal sparking but definitely will not be able to keep up my normal presence.
I packed only comfortable shoes and intend to eat and drink moderately and walk a LOT!
I am bringing my Tai Chi dvd that they gave us in my wt loss study and will use it regularly.

Please do me a favor and let me know by sparkmail if you need me- otherwise I will check up on everyone when I get back and resubscribe to your blogs.

CIAO! emoticon

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

HICKOK-HALEY 4/23/2012 2:48AM

    How did I miss the exciting news. I can't wait to see you pics. Have fun!!
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LITTLEBJANET 4/20/2012 8:17AM

    Have a W*O*N*D*E*R*F*U*L time!

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CHATTIEGIRL 4/18/2012 9:29PM

   
Ciao, have a wonderful time and take as much in as you can. I would love to be able to do that but can't so will see it through your eyes. God bless you and keep you safe and happy.

Smile Joyce

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DARA52 4/18/2012 6:22PM

    Ciao!! Tell your DH you fervently wish for a Belgium diamond!!!

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OLDERDANDRT 4/18/2012 2:42PM

    Ciao, baby!! Have a super time!! emoticon

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LESSOFPMCD 4/18/2012 1:45PM

    Have a great trip - hope to see some pictures when you return!

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BETHGILLIGAN 4/18/2012 12:46PM

    Have fun!!! I'm so excited for you!!!! Be safe!

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SEPPIESUSAN 4/18/2012 11:37AM

    Have a great trip!

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DEBBIEANNE1124 4/18/2012 11:27AM

    Nice Lizzie! Have a blast!

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RAINBOWCHOC 4/18/2012 11:00AM

    Give us a wave when you pass by

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WINFIELD28 4/18/2012 10:32AM

    Have a safe, exciting and fun trip!!!

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CINDYWAGNER1 4/18/2012 10:26AM

    Have a great and awesome time. Be safe and we can't wait to see pictures when you get back.

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N_STITCHES 4/18/2012 10:25AM

  Safe travels for you and your hubby, Elizabeth!......Patti
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HIPPICHICK1 4/18/2012 9:50AM

    Ciao bella! Have a GREAT time!!

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MEXGAL1 4/18/2012 9:44AM

    Sounds wonderful....have a wonderful safe journey!

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HSMOM2FOUR 4/18/2012 8:01AM

    Have a blast!!!!

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LITTLEFARMMOMMA 4/18/2012 7:58AM

    Oh, my dear friend, you are about to have the adventure I only dream of! How wonderful that are are able to take off and go exploring with the one you love! Savor every moment, and yes, take pictures! Love ya, my friend! Lori emoticon

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DOOBRIE 4/18/2012 7:57AM

    Bon voyage!
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NEW-CAZ 4/18/2012 7:49AM

    Have fun Liz emoticon

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SEPTEMBERSPIRIT 4/18/2012 7:46AM

    YOU sound like you are all set! CIAO Bella! ENJOY!!

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TWO more days!

Monday, April 16, 2012

This is my last day of work
(caring for my almost 98 yr old history professor, who is napping right now),
then having a short babysitting day tomorrow as my wonderful dil is home from school this week and enjoying time with her adorable little ones.
Then Wednesday afternoon-
off to Italy I fly!
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  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MAGGIEVAN 4/17/2012 7:01PM

    Enjoy your trip. I wish I could join you. Just have a fantastic time!!!

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MEXGAL1 4/17/2012 10:00AM

    Woo hoo Italy! I will be anxious to hear how your weather was.
Have a wonderful trip!

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OLDERDANDRT 4/17/2012 9:59AM

    emoticon Have a super viva Italia time!!! emoticon emoticon

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LESLIESENIOR 4/17/2012 1:17AM

    Arrivederci!!! I can't even imagine a trip like that!!! Have a fabulous trip and have pictures we can enjoy when you return.
Viva Italia!
Leslie

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BETHGILLIGAN 4/16/2012 6:21PM

    YAY!!!! Have a great time!!!!

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NEW-CAZ 4/16/2012 5:28PM

    Have a wonderful time Liz

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WINFIELD28 4/16/2012 3:21PM

    Enjoy your trip!!!

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NHGRL68 4/16/2012 3:19PM

    How exciting! Have an AWESOME vaca!!! emoticon

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DEBBIEANNE1124 4/16/2012 3:17PM

    I can't wait to hear about your trip and see the pictures.

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DOOBRIE 4/16/2012 3:10PM

    Not long now!

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GEEKYGRANDMOMMY 4/16/2012 3:03PM

    have a great trip.

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TRENTDREAMER 4/16/2012 2:55PM

    Have a great trip

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LITTLEFARMMOMMA 4/16/2012 2:46PM

    Oh, my GOODNESS! Have a GLORIOUS time in ITALY! How awesome is THAT! emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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CINDYWAGNER1 4/16/2012 2:10PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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SEPTEMBERSPIRIT 4/16/2012 1:55PM

    emoticon for Wednesday!! Bon Voyage!!

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ROSEWAND 4/16/2012 1:54PM

    Have a wonderful time! Italy is one of my favorite
places in the world. Will you be able to update
us on your adventure while you are in country?
Hope so.

Otherwise, please give us a full report upon
your return. I love to hear of other's travel
experiences. emoticon

Comment edited on: 4/16/2012 1:54:42 PM

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Take time for your elders

Sunday, April 15, 2012

If you know any old folks,
especially those living alone,
please consider taking a little time out of your busy life to give them your undivided attention for even an hour or two once in a while.
It is a gift to them and you may be surprised how much YOU get out of it.

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  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

HIPPICHICK1 4/16/2012 12:54PM

    YES! emoticon emoticon emoticon

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N_STITCHES 4/16/2012 11:38AM

  You are absolutely correct!

Yesterday, hubby and I went to see his mom at the senior living facility. We did a first and took Bella, our yorkie, with us. Bella loved all the head scratches and tummy rubs from grandma and the residents and grandma and the residents seemed to be delighted to visit with Bella. We'll definitely be taking her again with us......Patti
emoticon and ATKINS

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HANNAHV 4/16/2012 10:54AM

    So right! and we can learn so much from them!

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CEILIE2 4/16/2012 8:37AM

    Oh you a so very right.
Thank you for reminding people.
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GOLFGMA 4/16/2012 6:46AM

    You are absolutely right. My mother who will be 90 in August tells us just to get to talk to someone even for a few minutes breaks up a lonely day. emoticon

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NEW-CAZ 4/16/2012 2:49AM

    You're so right Liz!

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LITTLEFARMMOMMA 4/15/2012 11:13PM

    Elizabeth, I nearly cried today when an elderly man came through my line to buy milk and bread. He couldn't find his money or debit card, but I think he knew he didn't have it when he came through. $7 and he had nothing. I ran and got my wallet and paid it, giving him a hug and whispering to him that I miss my Dad in Michigan and wanted him to have it, so I paid for it. Afterward, I kicked myself, feeling like I'd been had. You reminded me, so WHAT if I'd been had! I am so glad that I bough this little old man some bread and milk!

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CHALLENGER15 4/15/2012 9:13PM

    Absolutely right!

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WINFIELD28 4/15/2012 8:42PM

    You are so right!


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MEXGAL1 4/15/2012 8:33PM

    lovely thought.

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DEBBIEANNE1124 4/15/2012 8:27PM

    Right on!

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BEECHNUT13 4/15/2012 8:23PM

    I'd give almost anything to spend an hour or two with my Papa again - I still miss him like crazy 12 years later. I spent every day with him for years - we lived with him, he used to watch me every day... then I got older and I was in high school and always too busy. I regret those times I spent with people I don't care about at all anymore, when I could have been spending time with him instead. :(

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BETHGILLIGAN 4/15/2012 8:17PM

    thank you for the reminder.

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GRANDMABABA 4/15/2012 8:02PM

    You are so right! Have a great week! emoticon

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FOUR more days!

Saturday, April 14, 2012

I am leaving for Italy on Wednesday!
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I have
started packing,
got documents ready,
bought travel size toiletries,
scheduled a haircut and manicure
and some extra grandbaby time before we leave,
started giving my dd, Mimi, some instructions (she's 24, slightly disabled, lives with us, but can stay alone with family supports nearby),
ordered refills on all my Rx,
arranged for rides to and from airport,
tied up loose ends at wt loss study and work.

Hmmm... anything I'm forgetting?
It's very complicated leaving your home/life for 3 weeks.

Oh, and I met with my friend yesterday about borrowing her camera but it was a bit to big, too heavy, and too complicated for me, so I'll have to make do with my little Sony.

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  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

DOR2BFIT 4/16/2012 1:40PM

    Have fun! emoticon

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OLDERDANDRT 4/16/2012 1:38PM

    Your little camera takes great pics! Know what you mean about the big, fancy ones. You practically need a college degree to learn how to use them!
Sounds like you're pretty much ready to go! Have a great time!

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DEBBIEANNE1124 4/15/2012 3:20PM

    If you take any prescripts get them allr efilled early.
Oh and you are amking us all jealous. LOL
Ship me over there and stow me away.

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CINDYWAGNER1 4/15/2012 11:16AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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HIPPICHICK1 4/15/2012 9:00AM

    Only 3 more sleeps!!
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SCHATZI4MO 4/14/2012 11:14PM

    how FABULOUS ... i love italy.

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NAMMYOFTHREE 4/14/2012 6:52PM

 


And 3 -2-1. Have a delightful time!

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46SHADOW 4/14/2012 5:18PM

    emoticon emoticonEnjoy!

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WINFIELD28 4/14/2012 4:50PM

    You sound so organized and all ready to go.
Enjoy!!!

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DARA52 4/14/2012 4:27PM

    It will be a wonderful trip. Don't carry too much. That was one thing my GF said when she went to Italy. She had too many clothes. Have fun!!!

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BETHGILLIGAN 4/14/2012 2:43PM

    Sounds like you've got it covered!! Hope you have a blast!

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BEECHNUT13 4/14/2012 2:22PM

    Have a wonderful time!

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PHEBESS 4/14/2012 1:53PM

    Have a wonderful time!!!!!!! (I'm so jealous, I LOVE Italy!) And make sure you have comfy shoes for tons of walking - both to see the sites and to burn off all that yummy gelato! (Remember, never order only one flavor, they'll think you're crazy - even with a small size, get two flavors. My favorite combo is dark chocolate and coffee - "cioccolata fondante i cafe" - perfetto!!!!!)

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TRAVELGRRL 4/14/2012 1:49PM

    Complicated to leave for three weeks, but a FUN complicated!!!

Yay for you!!

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MISS_VIV 4/14/2012 1:49PM

    RAIN/WINDBREAKER or UMBRELLA? just in case?

You will do well with the camera you have. point and click. WOO HOO

Comment edited on: 4/14/2012 1:49:48 PM

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NEW-CAZ 4/14/2012 1:36PM

    don't forget the suncream!
Take lots of pics....you know how nosey I am!
Just wish I were going with you, have fun!

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N_STITCHES 4/14/2012 1:27PM

  Sounds like you've got it all. Be sure and take lots and lots of pics for us to live vicariously through you. Have a wonderful time......Patti

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MARITIMER3 4/14/2012 1:24PM

    Wish I were coming too! Had a wonderful trip to England in 2008 when DD#3 graduated from university, but would love to go back! Have a great time.

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DOOBRIE 4/14/2012 12:21PM

    Money - have you got your euros sorted out?

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MEXGAL1 4/14/2012 12:18PM

    Like I said...........Jealous!
Sounds like you have covered everything.
Now just have a wonderful time. have some pizza for me!
Peanut

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SEPTEMBERSPIRIT 4/14/2012 12:14PM

    Sounds like you have all in order ... Three weeks away - sounds like heaven! You are living the life I hope to live in a few years : )

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WATERMELLEN 4/14/2012 12:10PM

    Love love love Italy! Hope you have a marvellous time and had budgeted calorie space for gelato every day!!

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FUNKYG1 4/14/2012 11:49AM

    emoticon

Have a wonderful trip.

Nora

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