10 things I love about living in Italy.

You have been given everything to create love and beauty for you and everyone in your life. It's inside you and always has been.

You have been given everything to create love and beauty for you and everyone in your life. It’s inside you and always has been. ♡

Yay. I found the ABSOLUTE most perfect writing moment. I finished work early. My sons are at school. My husband is at work.  Outside it is a beautiful day and I have just sat down to check my messages with a nice cup of hot coffee.

I was OFF coffee for about eight years actually. I just wanted to challenge myself to see if I could live without it and I did. Then I said, why? Why not. I think most things in moderation are okay. How about you?

Or do you think it’s better to go the maximum on each and every project? Hmm. Food for thought.

I should say coffee for thought. :)

My friend told me today that bad things happen in threes. Have you ever heard that? That’s AWESOME news because that will leave me with a credit for the next three years or so. It’s been one thing after the other, but I’m MOVING forward. You know what they say?

Anything that has happened before today is part of the past. And that is EXACTLY where I intend to put it. I’m good at filing.

{Past} ~ file under P. Done.

Now New

Do you guys like new things? Seriously? I want to know. I know it’s super cool when you get new shoes, new cars, new houses, new job and new boyfriends or girlfriends but the older I get I am starting to love OLD.

I like OLD habits. I like seeing my things in my closet in a certain order. I like worn in leather shoes that are comfortable. I love my 10 year old Nikes. Sure, I got new ones, but I like my old ones better.

Ahhh New and Lovely.

Friends. My friends have just been angels lately picking me up where I have left off. And my family too. Believe it or not, my students smiles have not only picked me up, they’ve added an element of surprise wonder I didn’t expect. Sometimes spending so much time in the class room I forget that I’m the teacher. Not really, I mean, I suppose I forget that 30 years have passed that I was taking notes and doing exercises and hanging out with my friends.

Always take time to smell the flowers. ♡

Reminder: Always take time to smell the flowers. ♡

When the kids come up to ask me questions about things they didn’t quite understand, sometimes I’m just mesmerized by their eyes and their perfect skin. I think to myself as I’m looking at them, I wonder if they realize how gorgeous they are? Probably not.

♡ Sometimes in order to be happy in the present moment you have to be willing to give up all hope for a better past.

♡ Sometimes in order to be happy in the present moment you have to be willing to give up all hope for a better past.

They say the problem with youth is that it is wasted on the young.

Okay to help me get a better handle on life today I’ve decided to write a post called 10 things I love about living in Italy.

So here goes something.

10. Meeting up with friends for lunch or a coffee. Okay, that has nothing to do with Italy and I think that can be said anywhere you live. I put this first because it’s one of those cherries on my ice cream of life.

9. A trip to my husband’s day spa. They say that the best things in life are free but you can give them to the birds and the bees. Have you heard that song? Well, I LOVE getting the WIFE treatment when I go to the spa. It’s literally an open door policy and they will not accept my cash.

8. My family.

7. The food. Okay, if any of you know me, you know that when I teach English I skip RIGHT over the chapters on food. That’s because I dislike talking about food. It’s personal. It’s private. It’s a HUGE part of my life. I just know that when I go to USA for holiday I pack my bags with things I find at the supermarket.

6. My commute to work. It’s half an hour of which 20 minutes is in the Italian country side. If I could I would film it because every day it is different. One day it is all colorful flowers. The next day it is barren and dirt. Another day it is snow with fog. It’s just gorgeous. It’s a two lane windy road with deep ditches on each side and curves.

5. The possibility of getting around without a car. I asked my best friend why Americans are so into cars. She said that it’s because they have a love affair with their cars. One reason I moved to Italy was because it is a system in which it is possible and quite easy to survive and thrive without a car.

4. Health Care. I had excellent health care coverage when I lived in America because I worked for Time Warner. I cannot complain. I just know that when I moved here to Italy there was something magical about knowing that you will be taken care of no matter who you were. I liked that. I still do.

3. My house.

2. Having four seasons. I crave the ocean. I crave the smell of the Pacific Ocean. I long for the soothing sound of the waves breaking. I could watch the sets come in for hours. The only thing I missed having in southern California was having four seasons. I truly enjoy each and every one of them.

1. Writing a Blog. Okay that’s not Italy either but you know what? Say I lived in southern California and I wrote a blog from there, do you think anyone would read it? I don’t know. I love this my friend RA shared with me quoting Mike Meyers, Wherever you go, there you are.

How I, little person, am making money on the internet.

I was speaking with a student of mine the other day and our discussion was buying on the internet. My question I put to the class was: Have you ever bought anything on the internet? The way I see it, there are six continents and then the internet.

I was suprised that they rarely buy on the internet because I’ve been doing quite a bit of online shopping myself.

So I thought I’d put together a little list for you all to see exactly what I have been doing over the last three years since started my blog to make money blogging, or as they say online.  My total earnings is probably in the range of $2,000.

1. I started with my book, Zero to Blog that originally I was aking $15 for. It’s now free on my sidebar. It tells the story of why and how I started a blog.

2. I then decided to sell my paintings so I challenged myself to a ten day challenge and listed one painting a day on ebay. That was fun. I’m not certain exactly how much I made but it was still a great experience and perhaps served to get my name out as an artist.

3. I then uploaded some of my designs onto a couple of websites that print my designs on thousands of gadgets. This looked really cool, especially for my mom as when you open the website it makes your brand appear larger than it really is. It’s a bit of a mind game to get used to seeing your brand on thousands of items. Then again, that’s only virtual. The actual earnings comes from sales. I love getting that email that says one of my designs has sold as this truly is passive income. I have sold my designs on mouse pads, coffee mugs, you name it.

Finally, I recently decided to buy some stocks and invest. I had to get over alot of self imposed thoughts that I didn’t know what I was doing to just try. I read over the years about investing and frankly I found it all quite boring. I found a website that actually is fun to invest in and it’s super exciting to see my income go up. Fun stuff.

Otherwise, of course, I still love to paint and teach and that gets me through the days.

Care to share? 

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15 responses to “10 things I love about living in Italy.

  1. Hi Julie – your blog is really great! I’m a list person too, so I think you’re lista are fantastic. I also have to really agree with you about the health care in Italy – I’m from America as well and I love the fact that I pay very little and am still completely covered. :)

    Thanks, I’ll keep reading!

  2. Great list, great things Ms. Julie. You convinced us ….our bags are packed, how soon can you have the four of us over so we can expeieince for ourselves? ;) I wanted to add a thing or two to your list..the History, the food, the sites, the food, the culture and, of course, the food…with some good italian Wine!

    • Ha ha! Good one. Thanks for adding to the list — it continues to grow.

  3. Your life sounds beautiful Julie…Thanks for visiting my blog recently…enjoy the day…carpe diem.

  4. love the idea of getting around without a car…and the italian food…oh my…must be out of this world!

  5. No coffee. Coffee is my life blood. I live on it. (Except during the first part of all three of my pregnancies, when the smell of it made me sick).

    Your drive to work each day sounds blissful. If I drive out one direction from our home I can hit nothing but farm land and enjoy the peaceful drive. Any trip in the opposite direction hits nothing but traffic lights, traffic and congestion. I prefer the farm roads.

    Your list sounds wonderful, Julie. Something to remember during the depressing winter we have been experiencing around here lately.


  6. Great list Julie, we have a saying in the UK that things happen in threes. It does not matter if they are good bad or whatever, the sort of thing is sadly one death and you hear of two more in quick succession, but then same applies to pregnancies.

  7. Thanks for all the encouragement Julie :)

  8. I wanted to try posting with my other identity and I also wanted to tell you how you have inspired a new post. I have to totally write one day about how Singaporeans worship their cars.

    • I have been following your blog bookjunkie for like a year and I see you are going through some cross over changes as you get your domain named settled. You’ll see how these wrinkles will iron themselves out.


  9. I wish I lived in Italy now. It sounds so lovely especially your very own spa :)

    I would love free healthcare and 4 seasons for sure.

  10. Debra

    Ciao Bella Julie~Your list is wonderful and I would have to agree with you on them all! I have had a “taste” of Italy and “southern california” and though I have scads of relatives still there, my roots are from Europe!

    When I was in the first grade my heart was set on fire to visit those mysterious countries that had a part in the very foods that I ate at home, and I am with you, I don’t care to discuss food, I just love to cook a great meal and it is over with until the next.

    I do enjoy my car, but it seems our towns are not set up as they are in Europe for being walkable to businesses from home and bus shuttles are not accessable in rural areas unfortunately but I do have a new bike which I intend to attach a basket to and make my own route!
    I long for the town w/bike trails to safely ride to the market or to a park or somewhere for lunch w/a friend or just a cup of coffee. I didn’t drink coffee until I met my second husband when I was 49~I was a cocoa drinker before coffee and now I’m grinding beans at home! Ah the smell in the house is heavenly!

    Today in FLorida we were supposed to have 70* and sunshine and instead it is cloudy and just started raining so I will write in my journal what I like about Florida!! THE SUNSHINE!!

    Have a lovely day and thanks for sharing a cup this morning at my home~I am always happy when you come to visit~online!

    God Bless you!

    • Hello beauty girl.

      Thank you so much for dropping in and sharing a coffee break with me, even if it is virtually. I know exactly what you mean about the spaces in USA being so large and the way that the cities are built up makes having a car seem to be a necessity. It’s super cool here to see so many people walking. I don’t mean just a few. There are hundreds of them. I love it too. It’s healthy and fun. I like both walking in the country and in the city. The country air is better though.

      Hope your day and week is lovely.


  11. I love your list Julie. I can’t even remember how we found each other but I’m sure it has to do with Italy and not So. Cal. . Thanks for being there and sharing Italy with all of us.

    Number 11 should be something about the wonderful govt. example of Berlusconi? lol….

    • Thank you Michelle. I am trying to focus on the positive things in my life. Although I have also been thinking about writing a similar list as a joke of the 10 things I loathe. I’d start with customer services and schools. Isn’t that horrible? I work in the schools. I just have a different idea of what education should be like since I was raised in the states.

      You are spot on about the government here. The teachers and I spend a lot of time in the teacher’s lounges shaking our heads in disbelief.



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