A-List Guide to Obtaining Dual Citizenship

Italian Consulate San Francisco, USA
Consolato Generale d'Italia
a San Francisco
It’s been over a year since I became a dual citizen and received my coveted EU passport. My dual citizenship with Italy was recognized in August 2014, and I went to San Francisco that November to get my passport. It is quite thrilling to find myself in this newfound status and all that it offers. Dual citizenship is a fortunate thing, but I wish I had thought of looking into it years ago when it would have been easier to actually “do” something with it. As it is, I often dream of living abroad and now I have the ability to do so in Italy and elsewhere in the EU with a lot less hassle.


The DJ Suggests...Musical Recommendations for 2016

It's year three for the holiday card (year one and year two) and once again I'm glad to share some photos and musical recommendations with family and friends.


The (Not-So) Great American Train Ride

When I was younger, a growing sense of wanderlust found me longing to embark on a long distance train ride. Whether it was traveling from country to country in Europe or getting "a chance to see the real America" (as folks sometimes say), it seemed like a good way to go.


"So This is Yale" Moments

Yes, it was all I expected it would be
As an undergraduate, I attended a university located in the same city as Yale University. To this day I can recall a t-shirt I saw for sale in the Yale Co-op . It featured Charles Schutltz's Peanuts characters staring up at a big Gothic building on the Yale campus and included the caption "So This is Yale."


Mac Daddiez - A Delightful Treat for the Mountain Athlete

December is here but where is winter?! While weather in Bozeman was looking up for a while with a few small storms and cooler temperatures, it is now warmer and the long-term forecast (Ten day, according to the Weather Channel) isn't looking too good with temperatures in the 40s and questionable chances for snow. Despite the not so great start to the ski season, Mike and I have managed to get out for some skiing over the past few weekends. Nothing rave about and no great long days in the backcountry, but it was skiing none the less and that is always a good thing.


Calling It Quits on My Big Read

As for the big read a mentioned back in March, I have decided to abandon it about 100 pages from the end. I made steady progress from the time of the post until I left for a holiday in May (It was too big of a book to bring with me) and when I returned in early June I made some progress. Eventually summer moved along and other books made their way into my life. It became that I couldn't even make it through a simple ten page chapter of the big read. I tried for most of the fall but it was not to happen. I returned the book to the library yesterday. Perhaps I will pick it up for the third time in about another 20+ years but for now I am through with it.


Taking the Long Way Around - A Hiking Adventure on the Way to the Montenegrin Coast

Majstori is a charming village in Montenegro. From here, hiking paths go off in all directiosn and offer the adventurer a chance for peaceful reflection in nature.I am realizing that while I included a brief write up on our three day walk in Montenegro in my previous post, the story would not be complete without going into detail about our last day of the trek.


Backpacking Stats

Ladder of Kotor as seen from across the bay.
Last summer I compiled a list of hiking highlights in a post so I thought I'd do a similar post this year. This summer was another stellar time for outdoor adventures and Mike continues to be a good activity partner. Thanks to him, it was the most backpacking I had ever done in one summer. 


Counting My Blessings at a "Special" Place

We've all heard people talk about a "special place." One may call their grandmother's house, their beloved elementary school, a favorite summer camp, or any number of memorable locations a special place. Non-profit organizations remind supporters that their gift will help protect "this special place." As I think about special places in my life, I hope I can be more descriptive when I talk about and write about them. Yes, they are "special" but they are much more than that.


September is Music Month in Bozeman!

Live music in Bozeman can be a hit or miss affair. It seems likes months can go by with few shows to choose from.
Other times, we have the high-class problem of having so many good shows to choose from that music lovers are forced to pick and choose. September is shaping up to be quite the month for live music with one of the most diverse line ups I've seen in a while.


Sharing, Reading, Recycling

I have long been a big fan of books, reading and libraries. My enthusiasm started at a young age, and I have fond memories of the library and library class at Fernbrook School as well as youth library programs at the Randolph Public Library. Given my enthusiasm for books and libraries, I have been quite delighted to see that free, neighborhood-based "libraries" have started to appear throughout Bozeman.


These Three Things I Know...

Lately it seems I've been surrounded by know-it-alls. It is always enlightening to listen to these individuals in a conversation and see the passion they put into discussing/arguing subjects whether they are knowledgeable about them or not. The social scientist in me is fascinated with the know-it-all and ponders what might be going in his or her mind.
I could tell you a thing of two about the Wild East but only if you ask.


An Overlooked Gem: The Sky Rim Trail in Yellowstone

This year's Independence Day adventure was quite the contrast to last year's (http://annvinciguerra.blogspot.com/2014/10/the-truth-about-skiing-blaze.html). Rather than skiing 1,600+ vertical feet of perfect summer snow, Mike and I spent three days hiking from Teepee Creek to Specimen Creek via the Sky Rim Trail. It was a glorious walk in some of Yellowstone National Park's most easily accessible high country.


Turning to the Blue Examination Book For Inspiration

As my 40s march on at an alarming pace, I still debate the big question, "What am I going to
do with my life?!"

I think of the things I have done (Gone to school, worked for 15 years in the non-profit sector, worked for 15 months at the university) and the things I would like to do (A big ???) and compare them to my career goals as a child. Could the answer be there? Perhaps.


What on Earth is an Apple-Knocker?!

What on earth is an apple-knocker?My cousins and I have contemplated this for decades. Our grandmother, Helen LaVanco Manno, was a vivacious woman who was quick to laugh and provide witty commentary on life and the people around her. The term "apple-knocker" was one of the most colorful words we learned from her musings.


Making a Sound Investment: Thoughts on Giving

Today, I sent University of Wyoming a check to upgrade my lifetime alumni association membership to the "gold" level. Since earning my M.A. from UW in 1996, I have given to the university and now find that I have a hard time resisting their appeals for support.


Contemplating Wild Beauty

My recent trip to Montenegro with Mike marked my third time in the country and his first. I have a passion for traveling in the Wild East and Montenegro, with its rugged mountains, beautiful coast, and off-beaten-path feel, has all of the elements I look for when traveling abroad. 


Reflections on the Wild East

It all started with a trip to Prague in 2000. I was there with one of my favorite travel buddies, the vibe was vibrant yet low-key, and the dollar was strong. It was 11 years after the fall of communism and a palpable sense of discovery was felt by locals and travelers alike. It was then that I fell in love with the Wild East.


A-List Names Blackbird "Best Pizza in Bozeman"

We've all been in this situation. You're out having pizza with friends. Someone exclaims, "This is the best pizza in town!" Inevitably someone else chimes in, "No way. This is good but the pizza at xxx is so much better." What follows is a lively conversation about the best pizza in town. (The same thing often happens with coffee, beer, burgers, sushi, breakfast joints, etc.)

In these situations, I have always wondered how one could have a strong opinion about which pizza is the best when they are not comparing the two side-by-side. Perhaps it's the fact that while I enjoy good food and drinks, I'm not much of a gourmet. The nuances of food and food memories don't stick with me, and I couldn't honestly declare a pizza (Or beer, coffee, burger or anything) the best unless I tasted them in one sitting. Thus the idea for the Best of Bozeman Pizza Tasting Party was born.


A-List Recipe: Smiling Buddha Ginger Tea

Last week's rainy weekend allowed me to revisit homemade tea and gives me the chance to share another recipe with you. I'm not much of a tea fan but have recently grown quite fond of ginger tea. (Thanks, Mike, for introducing me to Choice Organic Ginger Tea!) While in San Francisco in November, my chef buddy Deno made homemade ginger tea and it was wonderful so I decided to try it on my own. It was the perfect thing to make over a rainy weekend and is quite easy. Enjoy on a rainy spring day or any time!

Smiling Buddha Ginger Tea
~For every six ounces of water, add 12 slices of thinly cut ginger.
  • Place the ginger and water in a pot.
  • Bring to a boil.
  • Simmer for 25 minutes.
  • Voila! Your hot ginger tea is now ready. Add honey to suit your taste.
Note: If you have made enough tea to save for later, you can go either way on removing the ginger slices. If you leave them in there, it makes the tea very strong so you'll have to dilute subsequent cups of tea with water.


Taking My Musings to the Masses

Most of my musings are limited to this blog but sometimes they make it beyond and into the big, wide world. 


Aspiring to Bend Beyond

I was once capable of bending beyond
Jumping Back Into It with Hot Yoga 

"The company of other inspiring yogis motivated me as I listened to the gentle coaxing of our teacher. 'Raise your hands overhead, stretch, and slowly lean back,' he kindly instructed us. Slowly I felt my back extending as I folded deeper into the pose. It was then I felt myself bending, expanding, growing, transforming, releasing toxins, becoming recharged. Hot yoga was transforming me."


Road Tripping: Jackson Hole & the St. Anthony Sand Dunes

My last post highlighted some of my recent ski adventures. In non-snow related activities, here's what's been going on....

Teton mountain backdrop
I am certain that if the name was changed to "Teton View Sand Dunes" they would sky-rocket in popularity!


A Sampling of Ski Adventures From the Past Few Weeks

Atmospheric Turns Down Hyalite Peak
I haven't posted anything for a while but my recent adventures have produced some fond memories and good photos. The weather continues to be warm and it looks like winter has made an early departure from town. Flowers are slowly starting to bloom, and we've already had over a week of dry trails for mountain biking. While I am glad to have that as an after-work exercise option, I'm disturbed at the fact that we are mountain biking in the town of Bozeman in March!


A Big Read with a Light Read as an Appetizer

Next time I'll read it in Russian
Several summers ago, I read Tolstoy's Anna Karenina. I was inspired by Kate, the daughter of my cousin Frank's wife Clara. Kate was 16 years old at the time and was in the middle of reading the book. (Smart girl, great way for an outsider to pass the time at our day long "Cousins' Party.") Inspired and not to be out done by someone not yet out of high school, I set out to read the book that summer.


Snow Update - Geeking Out One Year Later

Approaching the summit
This post, about The Steenburgh Winter concept and "geeking out" about snow conditions, has been one of the most popular on this blog, making it into the top five. Although I love snow and skiing as do lots of people who read this blog, for some reason it always surprises me that such posts remain so popular over time (Note the number one post).


R.I.P. Al Dean the Cat

Al Dean the Cat
Al Dean the Cat of Bozeman, Montana passed away peacefully on January 30, 2015 after a bout with mega-colon.


Girl vs. Mountain: Girl 0, Mountain 1

Came and saw but did not conquer

I bet you’re wondering why I'm writing on a Saturday afternoon. If you live in Bozeman, all you have to do is look out your window and you’ll know the answer. It’s 45+ degrees outside with grey skies and it has been drizzling rain on and off all day. My plan was to ski tour from the Chestnut Mountain trailhead to the Goose Creek trailhead. While I have skied Goose Creek often, I have never approached it from the opposite end. It seemed like a good objective, and I was keen on skiing something new.


Skiing Near Big Horn Peak in Yellowstone

Quite, Beautiful, Windy


Making It to the Top & More Random Thoughts About Snow & Skiing

Our Valley So Sweet, as seen from the Little Ellis area
Today I took a look at the stats for my blog, which revealed that this post out performed the "Where Tito Once Roamed" post from 2013. While I think the Tito post is much more interesting, I am not surprised that my Types of Snow post moved into the top position. It is winter, after all, so it is little wonder it is showing up on web searches and people are checking it out with great enthusiasm.