Monday Moments of Gratitude #16

Ahhh! So much to be grateful for! (Warning! Long post with lots of pix!) Linking up with Simply Shaunacey for another Monday Moments of Gratitude, a place where we are intentionally grateful for the little things in life.

1. Time off. I was busy living life and didn’t want to take any time away from life to write about it. Life has enough pressures so I’m glad I took some time off to simply live. I kept composing blog posts in my head but never made it over here to get them actually written down.

2. Lunch with my dad at Mrs. Wilke’s Boarding House in Savannah. I had learned about this place from an article in Southern Living magazine about a decade earlier. Dad and I have wanted to go and we finally made it happen. Savannah is about a two hour drive from Jacksonville but despite getting an early start, we still didn’t make the first seating. We waited in line for about two hours.

We finally got to the front of the line!And were shown to our table. It is already loaded with dishes of southern cooking. There was SO.MUCH.FOOD!I loaded my plate up with all matter of goodness. Seriously the best fried chicken I’ve ever had. I ate my fill (and then some!)

I even managed to eat a small dish of peach cobbler. Hey, I’m not a quitter. What can I say? Dad and I had a lovely time together. I’m so glad we did this! Next year we are going on the BBQ trail.

2. My daughter’s Sweet Sixteen. I’ve mentioned before that this is a milestone year. My daughter turned 16 and we celebrated twice: once with family and once with her friends. Two friends came over on the morning of her birthday while she was with her dad watching the sun rise at the beach and filled her room with 150 balloons.
That evening we took her group of girls to the Brick Restaurant in Avondale.

Everyone looked so pretty all dressed up!

I am so blessed to have a daughter! (The greatest gift and honor is having you as a daughter! What movie is that line from?)

3. Two week trip through NC and VA. I had two homeschool conventions on back-to-back weekends and rather than drive up and back, Michael and I turned that trip into a mini-vacation and checked off two more things off of our 25th Anniversary Palooza list! #13 {Camping trip}, #23 {Blue Ridge Parkway NC to VA} and #24 {Vineyard tour in VA}.
On Sunday we toured a winery and a cidery. We had discovered Chateau Morisette a decade earlier so it was fun to return to this beautiful location. The landscaping at this place is spectacular! We sampled lots of wines -some really good, others not quite to our tastes – and bought several bottles to enjoy later. We also bought souvenir tshirts. We stayed for a tour of the winery. It was so fun to see all the barrels!

img_7881And learn how they make wine. Fascinating!img_7882Take a look at the ceiling. They used reclaimed wood from a sunken ship! Isn’t it stunning?img_7885

After the winery we found Foggy Ridge Cidery and were blown away by their cider. It was more wine than beer and it was delicious! We bought several bottles.img_7889We later had a bottle back at our little cabin with some local hoop cheese. Did I mention how good? So good!

The next day we drove along the Blue Ridge Parkway to Floyd, VA. We found a cute little bookshop where we bought two children’s poetry books then went upstairs to have one of the best coffees we’ve ever had and went around the corner to the hardware store where we bought a locally made wooden cutting board. We camped at Peaks of Otter and the following day hiked to the top of Sharp Top Mountain. On our last day we camped outside of Charlottesville and visited Monticello. You might have caught some of that if you follow me on Instagram. For pictures of those adventures, go there!

4. Father’s Day. We had lunch at our friends’ house and visited with old friends who were in town. Four of the families have been friends from when we first moved to Jacksonville almost seventeen years ago. We caught up, reminisced and swapped stories. So.Much.Fun. So much laughter! Some of the kids even got to catch up!

That evening we picked up Timothy, our middle son, from the airport. He was returning from Colorado where he had spent a month serving at Young Life’s Frontier Ranch. So good to hug on him again!
5. James and Jessica’s wedding. This past weekend we flew to Chicago to attend Michael’s cousin’s wedding. We had fun at the rehearsal dinner and the following evening at the wedding.  The band playing at the reception was seriously SO GOOD! We had a blast dancing all night long.

img_8055

Then the next day we walked all over the Art Institute of Chicago where we got to see many favorite Impressionism paintings and sculptures and then  caught an Uber to have lunch at Carmine’s. After that we walked the Magnificent Mile where I found a couple of really good deals. We logged close to 8 miles that day!
Like I said, so much to be grateful for! What are you grateful for this week? Link up with Shaunacey or tell me in the comments so I can celebrate with you!Monday Moments of Gratitude

Summer swing dress {Create 28}

Since you probably haven’t noticed, I’ll just go ahead and tell you: I’ve been missing for a while. I’ve been traveling and working and have been too busy living life to be documenting it! Ha ha! But today, I’m back at home, the laundry is caught up and it’s my turn to host today’s Create28 look! It just so happens to be one of my favorites!

A summer swing dress.

Last summer, I purchased my first swing dress from Old Navy and instantly fell in love with this comfy yet cute look. I mean, who doesn’t love wearing an extra large t-shirt? The difference is that rather than being an unshapely sack, it’s actually flattering on! Throw on some flat sandals, a necklace and you’re good to go!

Because of that, this spring when I found several dresses for a ridiculously low price at Ross, I had to buy them all.  Here’s one of my favorites…

striped swing dressThis black and white dress can be worn to run errands and then meet a friend or hubby for dinner. I added gold accents with my rope necklace and gold sandals.

black swing dress 2The great thing about swing dresses is that they are loose, allowing the air to flow on a hot, sticky day, which is what we are having around here. They are also forgiving when you’ve been traveling and eating out a lot and may have put on a few pounds. {ahem}

black swing dressIt’s great to have a few easy dresses in your closet that you can throw on at a moment’s notice! A knit swing dress is definitely one of them!

If you are looking for some summer outfit inspiration, check out the blogs below and join the Blended Blog tomorrow for a recap and link up!

Create28-Week 2

Nautical Navy! {Create 28}

It’s my turn to host the look for Create 28! For 28 days in June, each of The Blended Blog contributors will be creating a summer look.  So, check out the series for some outfit inspiration this summer.  Tomorrow, stop by Foxy’s Domestic Side for a Warm Weather Wedding look! Sarah lives in Sunny California so she will be sure to have some great ideas to what to wear to a wedding this summer! She also has great dresses.

Create28-Week 1

The nautical look includes the primary colors of navy, red and yellow so for this Nautical Navy prompt, I deviated from my usual navy blue. All my nautical looks involve the color navy so I decided to add a little red this time.  I am loving white jeans so much this spring/summer that I have added a third pair to my collection. If it’s really warm out, you could easily wear white shorts in place of the long pants.


The red striped top is bright and cheerful.And, of course, I added my starfish necklace. I just love it! I added silver accents with my necklace and sandals, but you could easily add gold hoop earrings, a gold rope necklace and gold sandals.

If the weather (or air conditioning) is a little cool, I would throw on a lightweight but long-sleeved open cardigan, a jeans jacket or a navy blazer.

 

Love the nautical look! Easy and never goes out of style! I love a classic look!

Summer dress {Style Perspectives}

Ha! Last week I goofed! I said it was our last week of Style Perspectives but actually THIS week is! The Blended Blog will continue with fashion posts on Wednesdays beginning this week as we go through Create28. Here’s a look at last week’s navy nautical look from Nicole. (I thought it was funny that several people thought it was my look since I love the nautical look!)

groupnavynautical

This week it’s Andrea‘s turn hosting on the Blended Blog. Stop by to see what she styled for this prompt she chose. (Knowing her, it’s going to be fabulous!)

I had fun going to Old Navy with my daughter over the weekend. (She turned 16 on Saturday and gets her license tomorrow! Eeeek!) I had no intention of shopping for myself but in the end they had a lot of cute things that I couldn’t resist getting two things. One was this sundress.

It’s loose and light and strappy. Perfect for a hot day!The back has this gathered area so it stays on nice and snug but still allowing me to breathe.
I added this sailboat necklace because…nautical! Don’t you love how the print of the dress looks like water?

Below are the links to the others. Check out their looks. You might find one you’ll want to copy!

style perspect
DAILY STYLE FINDS: The Personal Stylist
FOXY’S DOMESTIC SIDE: The Crafty Engineer
SIMPLY SHAUNACEY: Reformed Frumpy Mommy
TWO TEENS AND THEIR MAMA: Stylish Midlife Mama
RSQUARED: The Not So Nerdy Accountant
SHOES TO SHIRAZ: The Shoe Hoarding French Teacher
PUPPIES AND PRETTIES: Cube Dwelling Fashionista
MISHAPS AND MAYHEM OF SOLITARY LIFE: Single Girl, Simple Style
MAKING THE MOST OF EVERYDAY Classic Yet Current Over Forty
NICKANDNIK: Mama with Curves
LIVING ON CLOUD NINE: Blissful Fashionista
WHITNEY À LA MODE: A Book-Loving French Teacher

If you need some inspiration on what to wear each day, join us during the month of June, following the clothing prompts put out by different Blended Bloggers. Join them on their blogs and we’ll all link up on Wednesdays on the Blended Blog. Here are the first week’s prompts. It’s nice to not to have to think too much about what to wear! Create28-Week 1I hope you’ll join us!

Link up this week’s look below!

Navy Nautical {Style Perspectives}

It’s our last week of Style Perspectives! How can it already have been 15 weeks? The Blended Blog will continue with fashion posts on Wednesdays beginning next week as we go through Create28. More on that at the end of this post. But first…last week’s graduation looks:

graduation look

This week it’s Nicole‘s turn hosting on the Blended Blog. Stop by to see what she styled for this prompt she chose. I had an embarrassingly amount of nautical/navy/striped options I could have chosen but I decided to style this Merci tee. I purchased this last month at Ross for a great price! It’s flowy and loose and I love it.

Navy and white striped shirt

I have already paired it with white jeans, with skinny jeans, and with jean shorts but today I styled it with longer Bermuda shorts. I kept the accessories simple: an Alex and Ani bracelet my son gave me (it has a compass rose on it), a silver statement watch and little hoop earrings.

Merci with hatAs I get older, I find that the sun bothers me if I’m in it for a long time. So I’ve taken to wearing a hat if I’m going to be out for a long time, say at an art festival.

Merci wearing hat I especially like this straw one because it has strings with a toggle (which is behind my back so you can’t see it in this picture). This keeps it on my head and not flying off if a gust of wind should hit!

Next month, beginning on June 1st, different Blended Bloggers will be hosting a prompt on their blogs and we’ll all link up on Wednesdays on the Blended Blog. If you want to play along, here are the first week’s prompts. It’s nice to not to have to think too much about what to wear! Create28-Week 1I hope you’ll join us!

Link up this week’s look below!

Then comes baby! {Tuesdays with Tina, Part 22}

Tuesdays with Tina is where I chronicle my Italian mother’s story, from being born in a bomb shelter in World War 2, to meeting and marrying my US Navy father. It is an unlikely love story that has lasted almost 50 years. If you missed any part of the story, you can catch up here.Tuesdays with TinaMe: [to Hugh] What was your work? What was your job at that time?

Hugh: Before we got married I started training for flying to become air crew. It was six months and I qualified but I always had to fly on my days off from my regular work. We worked at a place called NALCOE [Naval Air Logistics Coordinator Europe] and what we did was every day all the bases in Europe would send us an all hand report of all the mail, cargo and people they had on hand to be moved. And then NALCOE would direct VR-24 to send a flight, NAS Sigonella to send a flight to pick up cargo or people and move it around. That’s all we did. One week we’d work 7:00 to 3:00, another week we’d work 3:00 to 11:00 and one week we’d work 11:00 to 7:00. Every three weeks you’re back on days. When I was on days I couldn’t fly because I was working 7:00 to 3:00. Our flights would usually take off at 7:00 and we’d get back around 2:00 or 3:00 in the afternoon. When I’d work the afternoon shift, I could fly out to the boat and then come back and work.

Me: So you’d fly in the morning, then come back and work in the evening til 11:00 at night. So basically you’d work two shifts. Then you’d go to sleep. Then back to work. And you did that why?

Hugh: Because I wanted to fly!

Me: So you had to have a certain number of hours before you could do that as your job?

Hugh: No, you had to be trained.

Me: So you had to get trained on your own time?

Hugh: You got trained on your own time and you flew on your own time. They had it good with me because they had a guy who would train on his own time fly on his own time.

Me: So it’s not like you got extra pay…

Hugh: Oh I DID get extra pay! I got flight pay. I think it was a hundred and something dollars a month extra.

Tina: Besides all the other stuff you did! [Enter a long discussion of some other activity here. Ahem.]

Tina: Everyone tried to stretch their pay.

Me: So then when I was born, I know it wasn’t customary for you to be in the room, were you at the hospital? Were you working?

Tina: He brought me to the hospital and I remember that you were born at 10:07 pm and I had been in labor since 2:00. They gave me this shot, but I didn’t know what it was. I was laboring and then I didn’t feel any pain. I was totally in the dark. I didn’t understand what was happening.

Me: There was no one there who could translate?

Tina: No. No and they didn’t even try. They gave me this shot without asking. In fact later I asked your father if they had asked him and he said no. So they gave me the epidural, I didn’t feel any pain and they were telling me to push. Remember this is my first child and I was also very naive. So they tell me to “Push! Push!” and then they said, “She’s born!” They had bet that I was going to have a boy from the heartbeat they thought they could tell. So when they said “She’s born” I wanted to see because I was expecting to have a boy! I didn’t believe them. I was sure I was having a boy I was afraid they were going to swap babies! Afterwards, they brought me to my room and that night they made me get up to go to the bathroom so I could get cleaned up and I passed out. I had to stay in the hospital for a week because I was in pain, my head and my shoulders, and I couldn’t lift my head from the pillow. In fact, I couldn’t even have a pillow. I had to lie flat on the bed. I couldn’t nurse you because I couldn’t sit up. Your father would go visit you in the nursery but they wouldn’t let my mother in. They were very severe. After a week I was able to go home but I still wasn’t great. Since I suffered so much with these pains, when it was time for David to be born, I told them no, I didn’t want the shot because I didn’t want the same problems.  When I was in the hospital, a girl would come in (we were in a double room), she would give birth and leave. Another girl would arrive, give birth, and leave. I was there for a week! I wasn’t well. So I decided I wanted to give birth naturally like so many millions of women have done, and then at the last minute, “Ack! Help!” My waters hadn’t broken; they had to break my waters because I was having so much pain. I remember it was on a Sunday at 11:30 at night. “It’s a little boy!” and I was sure I was having another girl because all they symptoms were exactly the same.

Hugh: She told me it was going to be another girl because it was just like the other one!

Tina: Exactly the same! Saliva, I liked coffee…everything the same! The same movements. When they said, “It’s a boy! It’s a boy!” I didn’t believe them! “I want to see! I want to see!” It took three days to decide on a name because we hadn’t picked out boys names! It was supposed to be Sharon Christy. Oh boy! So we agreed on David because it was easy enough for the Italian family and the American family.

Hugh: You had to pick a name that they could pronounce.

Tina: Yes, like ‘Jonathan’ or ‘Jacqueline’. Those were too hard.

Hugh: ‘David’ is ‘Davide’.

Tina: Even ‘Sheila’ has always been easy. So your father said, “You pick David and I pick the middle name.” And he picked Jack. 

Hugh: And she chose ‘Sheila’ and I chose ‘Kaye’.

Me: I never knew that!

Tina: Yes, this was the origin of the names!

 

 

Young Life’s Frontier Ranch {MMoG#15}

On Friday, rather than attend my son’s graduation ceremony with Providence Extension Program, my husband and I woke up at a crazy-early-hour to take our son to the airport so he could catch his American Airlines flight to Charlotte and then connect to his flight to Denver. Then he rendezvoused with a group of young people to take a ride to Frontier Ranch outside of Buena Vista, CO. Although he had not been involved with Young Life until just a few months ago, he has heard stories about Young Life camps and how awesome they are from his father and me. We met through Young Life in college. It was a great ministry for us then and it’s still going strong! So when he said he he wanted to get involved with YL while in college, we were very pleased. His cousin, Cole, attended FR last summer and this summer Cole’s sister is going the same session as Timothy! So the cousins will get to work together! How fun will that be?

Dinner at Chipotle's

The last supper together at Chipotle’s!

Jax Int'l Airport

Oh my it’s early! At the airport getting our last hugs!

Through TSA

There he goes!

He will be on work crew, serving as a server. He didn’t really have a lot of details of what his job will entail ahead of time but I served on workcrew at Southwind in 1989 or 1990(?) as a server and we basically waited tables. Three meals a day. Set up, served food and drinks, cleaned up. Repeat.

He is such a people person and a servant and I know he will have a blast getting to know kids and other leaders. I am SOOO excited for him! He will get to see real mountains! He loves the outdoors and hiking and rock climbing and to be surrounded by all that nature will be so wonderful for him!

On his Instagram, he wrote the following:

I’m going to camp from May 20th to June 19th! I won’t have my phone or any other electronics so WRITE ME LETTERS “Frontier Ranch
Timothy DelCharco-WC
P.O.Box 2025 Buena Vista, CO 81211″

Put that on the front of your envelope and even if I hardly know you I’d love if you wrote me a letter! I will answer each and every one that I receive! You’ll also receive my eternal thanks and gratitude for spending the time to write me a letter!
Don’t know what to write about? •ask me about my life
•tell me about your life
•ask me about books I like
•ask me about my faith
•don’t ask me about college I’m tired of that junk
•tell me about your passions or experiences
•ask me about how much I like math
This is not a conclusive list please feel free to write to me about things not on this list but do write to me!

So if you care to, even if you don’t know him, would you drop Timothy a postcard from where you live? I think it would be so fun for him to receive postcards from all over the country, nay, the WORLD while he is at camp. Jot a thing or two about yourself and where you live. And if you are a believer, maybe say a prayer or two for him and the others at FR? How great would it be for him to receive mail every day (I mean besides from his mother)?

I am grateful for this opportunity in which he gets to participate.

I am grateful for this child (who is a man now but will forever be MY child!)

I am grateful for my friends who love me by loving my children.

I am grateful for this online community.

I’m just gushing with gratitude over here.

Linking up with Simply Shaunacey.

Monday Moments of Gratitude

 

Simple Graduation Party Ideas

I promised you Monday that I would share the simple things I did to decorate for our home-grown graduation ceremony and party.

I had created a Graduation board on Pinterest several years ago when my first son graduated. I added a few more pins when I was searching for easy and not very expensive ways to decorate for THIS party. You can follow that board here.

Graduation Themed Treats

First up was some easy graduation themed treats. I loved some of the mortar board treats I found on the web but a few of them were too complicated. These were just right. Here’s my version.  mortar board candies

All it took was mini peanut butter cups, chocolate covered graham crackers, and fruit-by-the-foot. I unwrapped all the pb cups, smeared a tiny smear of peanut butter and attached the cookie on top. Then I snipped the fruit leather into strips and snipped the ends to form a tassel. That was attached with pb too. Easy and so cute!

Next up was this pin of diploma cookies.

diploma cookies

I bought two tins of Pirouette cookies and tied them with some red cording. Easy peasy yet everyone knew exactly what they were!

Simple Graduation Decorations

I have these two apothecary jars that needed something graduation-y. Annie and I went to three different stores looking for plastic mortar boards to fill them but could not find a thing! So I decided to make them out of cardstock and yellow floss. The little one on the table is a cake topper made of plastic that I had kept from Tommy’s graduation. That’s what I used as my model. I should have made more to fill them all the way but it had gotten late and I was tired. paper mortar boardsI had wanted to make a slideshow but in the end we printed up about 60 pictures of Timothy through the years and spread them out all over the place. My daughter was getting rid of this chickenwire picture hanger she had made from a Goodwill frame, so we hung it up and clipped pictures to it, stuck more in the mirror next to it, and scattered them around on end tables and the TV cabinet. It was fun to look through those and see Timothy through the years.picturesI think his high school friends who didn’t know Timothy as a little kid had fun looking at them too! all the treats

Easy Outdoor Graduation Decorations

congrats sign

This pin inspired this CONGRATS sign. I created it on Canva. If you want the file, let me know in the comments with an email address and I will send it to you. I printed them up on cardstock and glued the letters onto paint sticks from Lowe’s. (So sad that the sprinklers ruined these the following morning! Oh well! I can easily recreate them!) I purchased a dozen blue, grey (silver) and white balloons (UNF’s colors) and put them in the front and back yards.

tables and streamers

Since we had just finished constructing this shelter/lean-to/gazebo (we don’t know what to call it), we wanted to dress it up. (And it was perfect on this sunny day!) I found this pin for how to make streamers out of dollar store plastic tablecloths. Since I couldn’t find grey tablecloths we just did blue and white. Annie and I folded them vertically and then she cut them with a ruler and rotary cutter, then tied knots at the top. Then the whole thing was stapled to the wooden structure. It fluttered in the breeze and made the space festive!

flowers

I created these mason jar flower center pieces with a 2016 pick which I also created on Canva. I printed them on cardstock and double sided taped them over a wooden skewer.

flower centerpiecesI liked how they looked on the tables. diploma napkins

And finally, I bought a few things, like these paper plates, from Target. My mom wrapped up the plasticware in white paper napkins to look like more diplomas, like this pin.

And that’s it! It made the day feel special but it wasn’t crazy over-the-top with the decorations. I hope these simple ideas for decorating will inspire you as you celebrate a graduation in the future!Simple, Easy Graduation Decorations graphic

To read about our special Homeschool Graduation Ceremony, go here.

What to Wear to Graduation! {Style Perspectives}

Today is my day to share on The Blended Blog! I’m talking about what to wear to a graduation since we are in the season of graduations, whether from kindergarten, high school or college!IMG_7523

You probably already saw what I wore if you read my graduation post from Monday. I share what some of my other outfit contenders were on the Blended Blog so go see all the dresses I tried on in search of the perfect one!

Then come back tomorrow to get some simple decoration ideas for your next graduation party!

style perspectives graphic

 

First Comes Love; Then Comes Marriage; Then Comes… {Tuesdays with Tina, Part 21}

Tuesdays with Tina is where I chronicle my Italian mother’s story, from being born in a bomb shelter in World War 2, to meeting and marrying my US Navy father. It is an unlikely love story that has lasted almost 50 years. If you missed any part of the story, you can catch up here.Tuesdays with TinaMe: What happened when you got back from your honeymoon? Did you go live in the house near Zia Anna? Was that your first house?

Tina: Yes, that was our first house. We already had it ready for us.

Me: So no one was living there before? Daddy was already living there?

Tina: Yes, just a few days, a week before. We had the furniture all set up.

Me: Did you continue working?

Tina: No. I quit working before I got married. We got married in December and in January we discovered that I was expecting YOU!

Me: Was it an easy pregnancy? Did you have morning sickness?

Tina: Just for three months I had a little bit of nausea. It was kind of strange. Every time I opened the refrigerator, to me it had a very bad smell. There was nothing there but that’s how it was to me. And it was the same way with the second pregnancy. So I was sure that I was expecting another girl. Oh, and I had a lot of saliva! So much that I had to spit it out. So weird! I couldn’t swallow it all the time. It wasn’t all the time. But every so often, I would have so much saliva in my mouth that I just had to spit it out. If I did swallow it, it felt heavy in my stomach. I liked coffee! I would even eat some coffee beans. I’ve always liked to eat coffee beans but with the pregnancy, I liked it even more. I remember that we were at our house in Poggioreale when I started having some pains. It was in the afternoon and I had made pasta with potatoes. I called Anna, my sister-in-law, and told her that I wasn’t feeling well, that I was having some pain. I think my water had broken too. Your father took me to the American hospital at Agnano. I didn’t understand much English, it was my first pregnancy. I really didn’t know what was going on!

Tina Pregnant

My grandmother, my uncle (my mother’s sister’s husband) and my pregnant mom.

Me: Your first year of marriage, how did you communicate?

Tina: I did go to school for four months when I was pregnant with you. We understood some… I don’t really have a lot of memories from this time. Just a few times when we would do things with my parents, or my brother and his wife. Anna and I were always together because the men would go to work.

Me: How far was nonna from you all?

Tina: You had to cross the whole city. She was in the center and we were in the suburbs, near the cemetery. It was very close to Daddy’s work.

Hugh: You could see the gate from where we lived.

Me: We are talking about Capodicchino not Agnano, right?

Tina: Right. Your father worked at Capodicchino [the airport]. Agnano is where the hospital, the commissary and other shops were.

Hugh: It was farther to go to the commissary than it was to go to Tina’s mom’s house.

Tina: My mother’s house was in the center of the city, so it wasn’t that far. But Agnano was on the other side.

Me: And there was no Tangenziale [beltway] back then, right?

Tina: No, no. You had to cross the whole city. But you have to also realize that there were fewer cars then too. There was much less traffic. People used trams and other public transportation.

Hugh: It was easy to get around in a car.

Tina: In the 70s they started building the Tangenziale. I remember it was 500 lire and everyone complained about paying that kind of money.

Hugh: There were a few years where nobody used it. It was too expensive.

Tina: As traffic increased then people started using it out of necessity. But the fact that it was so expensive kept people away. One thousand lire a day, round trip, was good money back then! People didn’t make that kind of money.

Hugh: With time, not only did the traffic increase but people started making a little more money too so the convenience drove people to use it.

Me: When did they drop it? Because it’s free now, right?

Hugh and Tina: No, no! It’s not free!

Tina: In fact, Naples is the only Tangenziale in all of Italy where you still pay. It was supposed to have a toll up until they recouped their money but not only did they recoup their money, this Tangenziale was purchased by Benetton. It’s no longer 500 lire; now it’s one euro. So it’s gone up! But a lot of people use it because the traffic is so intense, so congested.