wreath with VSCO with se3 preset
Buon Natale!!!!! Or happy anything you're honoring!
I am excruciatingly (in a very pleasant sense) torn between the Ceppo Fiorentino reading - aka extremely traditional Italian Christmas - and the Yule profound meanings (Ancient History Fangirl episode!).
pandoro gif
How's your celebration going?
So far, I can't complain.
The last week, although a bit rushy for my liking, has been full of holiday pleasures.
Starting with the Fugassa we brought back from Venice.
We've been alternating it with Pandoro for our sinful breakfasts.
Then there was the cookie decorating (and manicure!) day with my niece.
My solitary - with tea, music, and santa ensemble - wrapping session.
wrapping with VSCO with se3 preset
The make-your-own centerpiece course I took. It was fun despite my creation was - as mercifully described by the lady whose centerpiece was neat and classic - like a forest had just exploded, "wild".
centrepiece course
forest explosion
Followed by the truffles my sister made at her chocolate course and bestowed to all the family members.
And then a massage Luca and I conceded ourselves at a Hammam in the city center before strolling the - way more decorated than Venice - city alleys to get the last two gifts. Between one purchase and the other, we had a break for tea & scones at Babington's, my favorite tea house. Not even a few drops of rain on our alfresco table ruined the atmosphere, not even the crowd.
Not even, later in the evening, the mysteriously not-registered reservation I had made at a fabulous restaurant for our intimate group of friends and us. We ended, after dozens of calls, at a restaurant where the father of a friend usually dines (so they welcomed us without hesitancy). We had to wait a bit for a table, outside, in the cold, but the wait was soon warmed and cheered by a bottle of wine, good conversation, and the Fritti (fried stuff) we were delivered: cheesy Supplì, potato Crocchette, Baccalà, and Fiori di Zucca (zucchini blossoms).
- my scented gloves :-) -
Talking traditional Roman food, I loved that at one of my other favorite places, a nice and cozy bistro in Ponte Milvio, they served us Ciambelline Al Vino (Roman cookies) when we met Luca's cousin for an exchanging-gifts aperitivo.
Yes, there's a lot of drinking going on.
I don't know if it is Covid-related or if it had already begun and was simply accelerated, but I am gladly witnessing a much greater attachment to traditions. More pride, more demand, more exaltation. At least here in Rome.
So on my last walk, finding big crates of moss for the Presepe (crib) at the flower shops,
or a giant Presepe in the porch of a really elegant, poshy, building,
and the sight of a nonna taking her niece for a ride on Piazza Navona's carousel, really melted my heart.
Piazza Navona is where parents used to (and some still do) take children on the 25ft, 26th, or the Befana (January 6th). The piazza fills with food stalls and game booths, like a town fair. If it wasn't so crowded on festive days, I'd go at least for a walk.
piazza Navona
Another, more modern, tradition for us Romans is the auditing of the Christmas trees and lights.

Come with me.
blue lights
Sadly, no Valentino (the designer) tree this year in Piazza Mignanelli, next to Piazza Di Spagna. It was one of the certainties of this time of the year. Always classy. What a pity.
olive trees
olive tree
But the surroundings and via Frattina are scattered with olive trees heavily lighted. Nice.
red tree
The extremist red tree in Piazza San Lorenzo in Lucina is beautiful, warming.
The "dress" tree in this shop window has become a cult.
Spelacchio (mangy, the nickname it's gained with time and many embarrassing episodes), the tree of Piazza Venezia, is... decent. An achievement, given the past, but still, this is supposed to be the city's tree! So I'd like it to be memorable.

Nonetheless, it earns points when compared to the discomfiting tree of the Capitolini. Yes, the pedaling to turn on the lights is cute, but seen, done, bleah!
Capitolini tree
The Fendi tree is, like always, horrible, to say the least. I don't have a pic, but you can Instagram it: #alberofendi. Perhaps they keep doing these atrocities to give us something to complain about. When they'll do something nice, an era will be gone.
Better turn to another certainty: the huge tree inside the Galleria Alberto Sordi: glittery, simple, elegant.
I fell for this tiny tree decoration in the Officina Profumo Farmaceutica di Santa Maria Novella and will stalk the owners to find out where they got it.
novella tree
The lights in Via Del Babuino seem a little out of place at first but then... they have a point.
Via Del Corso's lights were clean and nice, with a message dedicated to peace. Very appropriate.
via del corso
Like Venice, Rome is a city that is already decorated,
galleria sciarra
it needs nothing but tiny details to boost enthusiasm for the holidays.
Like this lady's hat: it's all you need to want to talk to her, get to know her, hear her story! (I love how elderly Roman matrons dress up for the holidays.)
That's it for today, cari amici, a lustful family lunch, some card playing, and a lot of wine are waiting for me. Merry Christmas, merry you, and merry me!


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