Posted in Random Stuff

Update: New Blog

Hey Everyone,

Hope you are enjoying this Summertime weather!

We are in the best time of year… SUMMER IN NEW ENGLAND! Yahoooo! I am so psyched about this Summer I can’t stand myself.   I have been dying for weather like last week’s since we started Winter last year!  

Can I get an AMEN for sand between our toes, late night sunsets, Summer clothes and sandals!?


Well, along with the excitement of this weather, I am making some changes to la vita miaI’ve decided to no longer feature my recipes here and start a new blog to showcase them.  Of course I will continue with posting to la vita mia with my life events and stuff on my mind; I just really need to drive myself back into blogging about food, and starting a new blog may help me achieve this goal. 🙂  

Now open for blogging is…. Girl Cooks Food!


All of my previous recipe posts are remaining here, but are also copied to my new blog.  It’s ready to view if you click the link above!  I posted a new recipe for a pork loin roast today you should check out.   

I hope you’ll check out my new blog, follow along there, and share it with your friends, too!

Have a great week, you guys!



Posted in Random Stuff

Waking Up Summer


The cat scatters by with his morning salutations.
A symphony of purrs and meows as he longs for my affection.

I open my eyes.

Wafts of crisp morning air trickle in from the open window above.
It smells Earthy. So green.

I breathe.

The sun’s rays display a brilliant light show on the ceiling.
Like the lights are dancing just for me.

I watch.

The girls run to my bedside requesting to snuggle.
I lift the blankets to let them in; one daughter snuggled on each side.

I smile.

Posted in Random Stuff

10 Day You Challenge- 10 Secrets

The first challenge of the 10 Day You Challenge.

My 10 Secrets…

1.  First, let me start with a not so secret, one of my favorite foods on the planet is the potato..made any way; they make me a super happy girl..but when they are fried into a POTATO CHIP… ahhH. I have such a lust for salty wisps of potatoes it brings me to insanity.  If I even hear the words POTATO and CHIPS I go into a shark-like frenzy looking for them.  I can eat an entire bag at one blinding fit sitting without a thought..which is why we rarely have chips at home unless they taste God-awful or are baked, which I can eat a few without losing control.

A completely heavenly day is with sunshine, a glass of white wine in one hand and a mass pile of chips in my mouth.. keepin’ it classy.

cape cod chips


2. I had dated a guy with a devil’s hair cut once.  Ugh, I cannot believe I’m admitting this.  It was a guy I was seeing briefly before I met my husband.   One afternoon he showed up with that hair cut claiming he thought I’d love it. It was shaved all around, except the front where he hair pasted two devil horns that were DYED RED!!!!!!!

And you just made my decision to stop seeing you a whole lot easier!  😛

devilfaceNot actual ex-boyfriend, just another idiot.


3. In 1996, my boyfriend and I went to a Dave Matthews concert, awesome floor seats.  The crowd stood up the second music started to play with the opening band, which was Soul Coughing..whom I miss. So, well, we naturally made out the entire concert surrounded by strangers. The entire time.  Now, that’s not the secret..friends were with me!  But, he and I are fairly tall people, so when the concert came to a close and the house lights came back on, we found a short young guy behind us standing on a folding chair staring at us. He wasn’t upset or anything cause I think he saw the show.. but  I mean we were making out like new couples usually do..with reckless abandon!  We giggled, said sorry, and he retorted to my bf.. No problem, man, but I sure hope you marry this girl!

And, you know what? He did.

usActually us.  🙂


4.  Everyone knows I have an obsession with everyone I know knows that Valeria with a coffee in hand equals a happy girl..BUT.  I’m not as obsessed as many think!  I usually drink a hot or a cold grande non-fat latte from Starbucks once a day, twice depending on how stressed out I am. The most I’ve ever had in one day was three, which was when I went shopping all day with my gf who is also a coffee junkie a month ago.

I do drink it every day though, or else you'd get the wrath of Valeria.  :P
I do drink it every day though, or else you’d get the wrath of Valeria. 😛


5.  For some reason, I despise when people refer to other people by their clinical sex term.. like female. Not sure how it became my personal pet peeve or so mainstream to use it, but it has. When did we go civilly from man and woman to male and female in general conversation!?!?! Egad. STAHPPP you are not a doctor!!


6. I rarely answer my house phone.  Actually, I think rare is too often a description for how much I have actually done it.  What I am saying is call my cell.. wait, better yet, I hate answering that, too, unless you are one of the three people I talk to, text me. 😉  My children don’t even react to the phone ringing anymore, as they know their Mom is NOT answering it.


7.  ‘I am not superstitious, just a little stitious.’ (please tell me you know this line)

I grew up in an Italian household where superstitions were running rampant a few times daily. God forbid I sat on the table, broke a mirror, let a splinter come out on its own or put my shoes on my bed for a nano second…the world would come to an end!! I still look at my mom with my mouth gaping open at her superstitions..but … I have to admit, some superstitions stuck into my being and I freak on my children about them too. So I can’t make fun of her all that badly.

I’ve broken two mirrors this year.  By my Mother’s superstitious standards I need to get re-baptized.


8. My husband thinks it’s funny how much I still love this..but I love playing solitaire on my phone. Like all the time.

Just don’t tell anyone.


9. I love working from home, probably not for the reasons you’d think. I mean, I love it cause I get to work in the sunshine of my yard, or can be an outright fresh from bed mess on conference calls, or I get to be home with my kids afterschool, but quite honestly, I love it because I get to chug through my house chores so I am free over the weekends to do whatever we want!  Throw in a load of laundry between spreadsheet uploads or mop the kitchen floor while steering my bi-montly budget calls on my cell. Truth.

Good times.  haha


10. I have ‘slender hands’ envy.  I dislike my hands, as well as other parts of myself, but dislike my hands a lot. I find them pudgy, veiny and strange. Plus, my nails are weird.. they’re just not pretty at all.  Oddly, my husband told me that when we first met he noticed how girly and dainty they were, odd right? I figured he said that to make me feel better about them, which I did, for like a day. Oh, also I have the oddest placed beauty marks on them.. on my left ring finger on the palm side, and then one on the palm of my right hand. ugh!

20140613-143958-52798293.jpg 20140613-143959-52799733.jpg my actual hands.. yes I was driving when I took these!


Wow. Phew.
That was more challenging than I figured!
Hope you guys share your 10 secrets, too.  Anywhere you can share, fb, instagram or pinterest!



Till next Tuesday!!


Posted in Random Stuff

10 Day YOU Challenge

Hi Everyone!

Starting tomorrow, and following over the next 10 Tuesdays, I will blog my 10 Day YOU Challenge!  10-Day-You-Challenge_thumbSaw this challenge on a random blog I came across last night, Blog Love Therapy, and thought the idea was something worth giving a try.  I love lists and sharing my life with you it’s a perfect match.

Here’s my twist… a challenge to my readers:  if you start your own challenge, whether on a blog or if you would like to share along with me, link me to it through my comments on here, fb or pinterest. 

Till tomorrow!



My YOU Challenges so far!:
10 Secrets

9 Loves

8 Fears

7 Wants

6 Places

5 Foods

4 Books


Posted in My Recipes

Potato Salad

Potato Salad
1.5 lb Red Potatoes
1 Pinch of Fresh Parsley Leaves, minced
1 Large Clove of Garlic, minced
2 Tablespoons Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1 Teaspoons Sea Salt
1 Teaspoon Fresh Ground Black Pepper

Bring about 3 Quarts of water in a large stock pot to a boil on high heat.  In the meantime, wash potatoes in cool water then let sit in a fresh cool water bath for ten minutes while the water reaches rolling boil.


Add a pinch of salt to the water then place potatoes gently.


Let boil on high for 35 minutes or until the potatoes are tender enough to pierce with a knife throughout.


Let the potatoes cool to the touch.  While they cool, wash and chop the parsley and chop the garlic.

Once the potatoes are cool enough, peel as much of the skin off as possible. My peeling trick is to wet my hands in cold water.  It helps pull off the skin much easier. Washing my hands off between each or every other potato, as the starch sticks to the hands.

In a large mixing bowl, add rustic cubed potatoes (not perfect), the parsley, garlic, salt, pepper and drizzle with the olive oil.  Mix well to combine the flavors.

potato salad


Posted in Random Stuff

Father’s Day weekend recap

Hi Everyone,

Hope all my Daddy friends had an amazing day yesterday with their families…and a fantastic weekend, too!

We ended up having a fun Saturday after all that rain disappeared!  We went to two birthday BBQs, one local for the children and one for the adults following that in town. It was a great time, and love kicking off the Summer with this type of fun.


Then Father’s Day was a super relaxing day together. The girls were so tired from their late night with my parents, and so were we!, that I got a little present along with my husband..sleep. THEY SLEPT TILL 9:30AM! I love sleeping in! This is a very rare occurance, everyone, as they wake up at the crack of “hell no” every day.

As soon as the girls woke up I whisked them away for a coffee run to let the big man sleep a little longer. Once we got home, the girls and I showered him with all the special homemade cards, paintings, school papers and presents.  Here are a few shots I took weeks ago of them making his cards after school.  They made him anchor/nautical themed photo frames, too.  One for his new office and one for home, but didn’t take snaps of that fearing I’d ruin the surprise by Instagramming them (I need an intervention.). 

fathersaday1 fathersday3

It was so sweet to watch his appreciation across his cute face, he truly is a dad made for these girls.  🙂 

Even my gift, which wasn’t handmade, went over real well! YES! I am not as creative as he with making cards or presents. I leave that up to Hallmark and Papyrus, then add in my own sentiments! So, I ended up getting him an outdoor patio heater, which I honestly have always wanted since we saw them 15 years ago!, and knew he did, too. Cannot wait to use that beast this Summer!

Our cat hiding behind his gift. teehee

After all the hugs and presents, we went to a new to us restaurant, that I cannot wait to go back to..Five Horse Tavern in Davis Sq. If I say that their coffee drink, The Ice Box, is the best liquor coffee drink I have ever had, I kid you not it is the best. HOLY I want to go back to there to drink more! 😉

Peach bellini with balsamic drizzle and The Ice Box. YEAH.

20140616-110255-39775985.jpg 20140616-110253-39773614.jpg

So, the restaurant; it was a lot of fun, had a great vibe, and the food was pretty amazing. I didn’t take many photos cause we really were drenched in each other’s company and eating.. lots of eating.  We split the donut holes, which reminded me of a cinnamon version of my mom’s zeppole.. amazinng. I got the seared tuna taco and potato taco with the best peach bellini I have ever had. My husband got the breakfast chimi with the ice box, which I thought was gluttonizingly good. Our youngest stuck with her staple of eggs and toast with OJ, and our oldest got The Capt’n, which is Captain Crunch crusted french toast with a raspberry coulis. They were a lot of good, and the portion was so big we all ate it! And I don’t even like Captain Crunch cereal! Our daughters drew the staff a thank you note for such a fun brunch, and with our check was the sweetest note written back to our girls! They made the girls’ day. Then after all this we did exactly what my husband wanted. A trip to SOWA, an area of the South End that has rapidly changed in recent years, to walk through the farmer’s market, adjoining outdoor market and the artist studio building. We had such  great time shopping around enjoying the gorgeous weather. 

One booth had these repurposed signs made out of old timbers and stuff…which I loved the wood blocks..esp the LOVE with the anchor.

We had such a great day ..I even got a new shower cap with sugar skulls on them from this cute shop set up there.  The owner/designer was so sweet too, and had a lot of other great handmade items I want to check out on her website. I love shower caps!!!!

Then we met our family back at our house for wine, apps and fun together. We tried our best to show all the fathers in our lives how much we love them, too.

The first man I ever loved.  Also, literally the most hardworking, sensible, selfless, loving, funny man I will ever know. 
My sis brought some stuff for the dads, so I made this.
This is my Mom, Connie. Connie makes insanely good pizza. This is Connie starting to make pizza in my kitchen.. this is A FIRST!


All and all a super weekend with all the people I love.


Hope your weekend was great too!


Posted in Random Stuff

Concert Bucket List


I have been super psyched up for the past handful of months over a show we are going to this Summer, Arcade Fire. I am a huge fan to say the least.  As I have been squealing like a teenage girl since we got the tickets, seriously, this got me thinking about my concert bucket list, and how I have seen some great shows and WANT to see some great artists before I get too old (which isn’t a thing right?!). 

When I talked over this list with my husband last week, you know to get him up to speed on who I want to see. next..ahem…   he was surprised at some of the artists I wanted to see or have I thought to share them.  Some of the artists on my list are there because they are just legends of music and, well, I want to see them! 

So here it is…

In no particular order and right off the top of my head. I will keep adding/crossing off as I think of artists!  Seen shows are crossed off at the end. 

– Neil Young 

– Paul McCartney

– Tony Bennett

– Cyndi Lauper

– David Bowie

– Justing Timberlake

– The Cure

– Nine Inch Nails

– Paul Simon -alone or with Garfunkel

– The Allman Bros

– Andrea Boccelli (I missed out on going with everyone a decade ago, and still stings!)

– The National

– Annie Lennox

– Foo Fighters

– Arcade Fire (Going to their show this Summer! I am insane about how close we will be!)

– The Killers

– Adele

– The Black Keys

Elton John

– Mumford and Sons ..for a 2nd time and forever!

– The Lumineers

– Jack White/White Stripes

– Bruce Springsteen

– Lady Gaga

– Iggy Pop

– Madonna

– Lorde

– Prince

– Grouplove

– Morrissey

The Mighty Mighty Bosstones (missed out years ago and still fuming!!)

– Coldplay ..for 2nd time

– Peter Gabriel ..for a 2nd time..and infinity!!

The Pixies –if Kim comes back!


The Rolling Stones

Willie Nelson

Sting (saw him 4x… BUT  If I got the chance I would go see him again.)

Bob Dillon

Green Day


Sound Garden

Beck– -saw him twice

Dave Matthews

Vampire Weekend

The Airborne Toxic Event



James Taylor

ColdPlaybut I’d see them again if given the chance.  Their new album is real good…jussayin! 




What bands or artists are on your concert bucket list?