just a few notes from the lovely weekend:

visited Lanciano: Santuario del Miracolo Eucaristico — 48 minutes from here.

Had a picnic at a small plaza near our parking lot. Wanted to visit the Santa Maria del Ponte but it was closed… so we just walked around and decided to drive to Vasto… (more info about Vasto here)

Beautiful views of the Mediterranean! I’ll try to update this post with pics at some point… I’m still working on March! Uffa. (That’s “argh” in Italian.)

So we wandered aimlessly… and found a really nice playground — all 4 kids had great fun riding this see-saw-swing thing. I promise to upload a video… again, when I’m done with the pics!

Walked to Cattedrale San Giuseppe — beautiful, old church — this is what it looks like in the winter. They had the sanctuary off to the side where the Blessed Sacrament is and a statue of Jesus and His Sacred Heart — with a wide open window and a kneeler for one. There was also a curious wooden structure in what I suspect is the Baptistery on top of what looked like a marble font, but I couldn’t tell for sure. The other reason I think that’s the Baptistery is because there’s also a painting of Jesus being baptized by St. John the Baptist.

In that picture, you can see the plaza to the right (your right if you’re facing the church) — and there’s a little brown door right beside the church (it’s actually across the street, but not apparent from this angle. That’s one of the best gelaterias in the area — their gelato comes from Gelateria di Noto. Yum yum! Ds-12’s favorite Limone comes from there. I got a combination cioccolato/frutti di bosco (wild berries). DD-18 got an awesome Limoncello. Lina, however, says, there’s an even better gelato on the left side… we’ll have to go back to try that one!

From there we again wandered aimlessly, and came across a street where artisan ceramicists were working. They do custom-made stuff, so when we get back in the fall we’re ordering a family plaque, or something… I’m getting a creamer/sugar set ’cause mine at home are too small for a family of 7. Prices are very reasonable, depending on how complicated the design you choose is. They also hold classes for kids as well as adults.

We got really lucky and stumbled into St. Mary Major, where one of the Holy Thorns — Sacra Spina is. Wikipedia doesn’t have it included in their “Holy Thorn” entry.

Got home and had leftover porchetta (the Italian version of Filipino lechon 🙂 ) for dinner. No, we refuse to worry about the swine flu 🙂