Thursday, May 7, 2009


Life is serendipitous at times..

Last Septemeber I had my little trip of a lifetime..
One of my favorite places was just outside of Assisi..
We stayed at a Villa I found on the internet because of a very last minute change of plans that left me searching for a memory:)

I found a place.. and we lucked out..
A privately owned villa.. that was now owned by the son of the original owners.. a very nice man..Paolo..

He revamped the beautiful villa and honored his parents w/ a plaque:)

I loved the grounds.. an olive orchard:) We had the small apartment..Spotlessly clean.. down a long winding driveway..part of the main beautiful villa.. We had the entire villa to ourselves those 5 days! It was heaven!

It was cool.. we sat by the pool to read w/ a glass of local wine..and cheese..admiring the peaceful views.
I had my face to the sun..and thought..this is as close to heaven as it gets..

On Paolo's property.. he had several concrete.. cement benches..tables made to enjoy the vistas..

This..was one of my favorites.. 2 benches by the olive trees..overlooking Assisi..~

I fell in love~

With the whole feeling of this area..

Where we parked our the back of the villa.. there was a little sign..

To his mom and dad~

I sure hope he read his guest book:) I told him how proud they would be of him..

We were a little early for his olives..

But nonetheless.. we tasted the proprietors kindness in more ways than one..Upon our arrival..

An olive oil cake made by his wife..their olive oil..their eggs.. coffee..her jam,their wine~
I adored my welcome there.
And clean clean clean:)

He was so sweet!

His rewarding him:)

While there.. he recommended places for us to see.. we already had a big itinerary..But he recommended Deruta for Pottery..

All in the same region as Perugia..Assisi..etc..(Love love love that region!!)

I never bought the pottery.. the euros were creeping up..our economy declining..and I already had more than enough memories to bring home!:)Jacques "soupirait" every time I picked up something!

But I did fall in love w/ it~

Imagine my surprise today..when I went for a briefing.. at a new store to open soon in town.

I have volunteered to help man a little shop..(along w/ at least 100 others..) a NOVA store.. NOVA is the original VON "Victorian Order Of Nurses"..They care for everyone here at home..angels on earth..we now have a little store where all the proceeds ..every sale..will go directly to NOVA..I look forward to spending time working there for them..

I was able to get a first peek.. and look what I saw..

Deruta Pottery..a set of 2 dinner dishes.. 2 salad dishes..a bowl.. a juice server and cream server..:)

Signed..Deruta Italy..The place Paolo recommended I buy my pottery!

From Blogger Pictures


Of course it was my first purchase:) (For a good cause!)..:)

And we used the dinner plates tonight..
w/ a salmon recipe..that was topped w/ my daughter's recipe for salsa..

Great w/ fish!

Chopped onions.. Kalamata olives.. capers..dill..(coriander if you wish) parsley..evoo..and lemon juice..(I LOVE IT!!)


Imagine my surprise at finding my coveted dishes..:)

I know I didn't get them THERE..but someone did..and brought them home for me:)

If you have never been to Assisi.. and have the chance..go:) The whole region is humbling.. beautiful and RICH.

Rich in memories that you bring home~


  1. What a heart warming story. Sometimes it seems there are no coincidences in life and if we sit patiently with our eyes and hearts open, all we desire will come before us. Thanks for the lovely reminder.

    And, I know I really want to go to Assisi now ;-)


  2. Your story took me right there - and took my mind off other worries this morning! When I came back from Italy, I brought back an entire set of Franco Mari dinner ware. I packed it into my rolling carry on, but it was so heavy that I couldn't put it up in the bin on the airplane! It makes me happy that you have found your Italian dishes.

  3. What a beautiful, beautiful post, Monique. It really touched my heart. It was truly meant to be that you have pieces of Deruta pottery in your home. Thank you for sharing Paolo's property. What a great opportunity to be there for you and your husband.
    Happy weekend, it has been lovely getting to know you as of late too. Who knows, maybe we'll meet up in France or Italy one of these days?

  4. Salut Monique, quelle merveilleuse restrospective. J'aime la dédicace a Paolos parents. C'est tres aimant. Je suis bien sure que vous avez passé de bon vacance a Asissi. Je te souhaite un bon week-end. A plus, Anja

  5. Monique...this was so beautiful...
    I love that region of Italy...than you for taking me there this afternoon....

  6. These memories will last you a lifetime! My daughter loves Deruta also because of Italy. Williams Sonoma sells a wonderful pattern.

    Your work with the store sounds so worthwhile ~ especially since you found such pretty dishes too ;)

  7. Thank you..

    Have a great weekend!

    I really am very excited about the shop..I knew I wanted to volunteer somewhere.. and when this happened..I knew..
    I worked in retail while going to high school and college:) And then of course my present job..a people job..
    What I love about this..? No pay..yet people pay..and all the $ go to NOVA.There are sooo many volunteers..I am afraid my hours will be minimal.

    This is funny:)
    I loved an outfit maybe 20 yrs ago:) The sweaters of this line matched the dirndl skirts:) I never bought it because it was...too dear..the whole outfit is there now..$10.00:)

    Sadly hips don't dirndl as well anymore:) and styles have changed:)
    The store has a bay window.. wood floors..little rooms.. old old old house right smack in the center of town.
    A farmer's market will open in May.. almost next door.:) I see SUPERNOVA:)

    Really..thank you..
    I loved the Umbrian region and recommend it highly.

  8. A beautiful story. I love your pictures - I never seem to have my camera when I want it most! Truly serendipitous. I love your dishes. I'll be the food tasted that much better because of them! ;)

  9. Lovely and heartwarming post, from beginning to end. :)

    The dishes? They were MEANT to be! And what special meaning they have for you, I'm sure.

    Your new venture sounds wonderful, as yes ~ a win, win, win situation.
    A delightful visit with you again today, Mme. M.! xo~m.

  10. Beautiful post, Monique..
    I wanted to wish you a Happy Mother's Day. Tomorrow is Lily's big day, so I have been busy...I posted it all..
    Have a wonderful day, Nana!

  11. I found your blog about two weeks ago, and have only just seen this post. At the time you posted it, we were in Italy, in Arezzo. But we made a side trip to Assisi--my husband is from San Francisco and had to see the birthplace of St. Francis.

    You've captured the atmosphere of the region and the warm hospitality of the people perfectly! I love the story of the dishes. They were meant to be yours. And you didn't have to carry them back!

    I love the story and the concept of Serendipity. I PROMISE I hadn't seen this when I named my blog. (My current header photo is the castle above Assisi).

    Merci mille fois!