5 Italian Foods: Deliziosi!


It’s been quite a while since I participated in Tanya’s 5 Things challenge. The topic this week is: Italian food!! My favorite cuisine! It’s even a bit difficult to choose ONLY five of them!

  1. Gnocchi with Vodka sauce
Bowls filled with comforting gnocchi alla vodka, Parmesan, and basil.
I love gnocchi with whatever sauce is put on it, but I am partial to “vodka sauce” – I don’t taste the vodka, but it’s a wonderful tomato based smooth sauce!

2. Gelato: This is the Italian word for ice cream, which is my favorite food, but somehow the Italians (or wherever it is made in their name) have it just perfect – rich, creamy, flavorful! I also like the sorbets.

Espresso Gelato
This is a photo of espresso gelato – coffee ice cream! I love it! Since I cannot drink coffee anymore, this ice cream is a delicious way to get my “coffee fix”!

3. Pizza – Who doesn’t love pizza? It is such a versatile dish – a variety of toppings, a variety of crusts, the combinations are almost endless! If you ask me what kind of pizza I want, I would say spinach (for deep dish), Hawaiian (pineapple and Canadian bacon, usually topped with barbecue sauce), margherita (tomato and cheese) if it’s very thin crust, and sausage and onion if ordered from a certain local pizza place.

Mugs Pizza and Ribs | Chicago


4. Shrimp or Chicken Alfredo – I rarely order this because the alfredo sauce has about a gazillion calories (more than many other Italian foods, but most Italian foods are very caloric), but I still love it!

5. Risotto, if it’s prepared properly!

Overhead shot of prepared shrimp risotto in grey bowl with spoon.
This is risotto with shrimp – one of my favorite kinds!

CFFC: Blue Is My World

Cee ends her color series for her Fun Foto Challenge this week, with the color blue.

Sky and clouds at sunset, Arlington Heights, IL
Glass art at the Moorings, Arlington Heights, IL
Still life: Produce in a blue bowl – I took this photo to use as a model for a still life painting I plan to do.
Dale playing games on his cellphone, March 2020
Bundled up and masked, February 2020
Immersive Van Gogh exhibit, Chicago: Starry Night

Friendly Friday: Purple Haze

The Friendly Friday challenge is a bi-weekly all-inclusive challenge, meaning it includes photos, prose, poetry, or anything else related to the theme, which currently is PURPLE. My first entry is purple in music videos. Mostly in the genre of rock or pop, I have also included a children’s song and a video by Asian band (?) Ponzona called Purple Kiss. My favorite is Purple Haze, but that’s because it brings back memories of youth! It’s a rather eclectic selection, so I hope you enjoy it!

For more information about the Friendly Friday challenge, click here. The great thing about Friendly Friday is you can participate in each topic as many times as you feel inspired to!

TreeSquared: Winter Trees Enhanced

For Becky’s penultimate day of trees squared, I decided I’d go with her theme somewhat. Here are some winter trees, enhanced!

One of the most wonderful features of the Moorings campus is the number and variety of trees! I am not a fan of winter in general, but I am awed by the complexity of their interwoven branches, which are best seen when they have no leaves to cover them.

I love playing with SnapSeed on my cellphone, so I enhanced (and squared) some of the shots!

This next set of comparisons was actually taken in early May – I just like the effect! And these are not squared but see below.

Here is the altered image squared:

I don’t know why this enhanced picture came out so blurry!

Trees in the background in this pair:

I decided to include this photo taken in February – it’s not enhanced/altered, I just like it!

TreeSquared: Cat Up a Tree

I have been AWOL the last few days, but I am back with another kind of “tree” for Becky’s July Square Trees. Cats love to climb on things, and are attracted to furniture with different levels, enclosures or holes to explore. Or to sleep on. Cat trees are typically made of a carpet material which felines use as a scratching post as well. The structures cat owners buy for their pets come in different sizes and shapes. This is one of my grandcats, lying on her humans’ “cat tree.”

Life in Colour: Seaside Blues

Jude’s July challenge on her blog Travel Words: Life in Colour is the color blue. This week she challenges us to post seaside blues.

Caesarea Maritima, Israel
The blue Mediterranean Sea at the site of the ancient Roman city of Caesarea Maritima, Israel

Two views of our cruise ship at the first stop of our Panama Canal cruise, at Half Moon Cay, Bahamas.

So many different blues in this shot! The blue sky, the different hues of the Caribbean between the beach and the ship
True blue Caribbean Sea!

Three scenes from our cruise ship to Alaska: leaving Vancouver (click on photo to see it larger).