Category Archives: Song Reference

Thankful

That’s my daughter in the water,
everything she knows I taught her.
Everything she knows.

Daughter by Loudon Wainwright III

Being overseas for any American holiday always makes me a little homesick. This is especially true during Thanksgiving. Despite everything that went wrong with our Thanksgiving dinner last year in London, I laugh whenever I think of the hilarious day spent cooking with two old friends in a foreign country.

This year I do not have access to a big oven, so no cooking. Instead I will be going to a restaurant, Texas Embassy, for Thanksgiving dinner…on Friday night. I know, it’s a little off, but the way I look at it, people eat leftovers all weekend so as long as I have some turkey this weekend it counts. More on that later…

I am thankful for a lot of things this year: great family (the whole extended bunch), amazing friends (old and new), and the ability to see out of both eyes are all high up on the list.

But at the very top of the list are my parents.

Mom, Dad, and I at my cousin's wedding (Aug. 2010)

When I told them I wanted to study music business, they said ok.

When I told them I wanted to move to Nashville, they said alright (after visiting Belmont and several long discussions).

When I said, “I think I want to take cooking lessons in Italy for a month, and then move to London,” they both agreed it was a good idea.

When I was struggling with what to do next, they suggested school (okay, they brought up law school, we compromised on a masters in music business).

They flew out for showcases at Belmont, drove from San Diego when I needed to have my tonsils removed so they could bring our dog, and helped me pack up my Nashville life before driving all my stuff back to San Diego.

Any other parents would have probably traded in this high maintenance girl for another model years ago, but not my parents.

Piazza Navona - Rome, Italy (Nov. 2009)

As kids, we think our parents are super heros who can save the world. When we become teenagers, this bubble bursts and our biggest fear is turning into our parents. Once we hit our twenties, we realize that despite our best efforts, we are turning into them anyway. People always tell me I look like my mom. But those who know the three of us would also tell you that my personality is very much like my dad’s. He has been teaching me how to be street smart and to think logically ever since he said, “You want a Happy Meal? Here’s $5, go order it.”

I was 4 years old at the time.

Mediterranean Cruise (Nov. 2009)

I learn lessons from him constantly, and it is the most recent one I would like to share.

It was not long after my surgery in August that the medical bills started coming in. Since I have not been working and had been living overseas, I did not have insurance in America (and still don’t). Vanderbilt gives patients without insurance coverage a 50% reduction, however half of a $30,000 surgery is still a large amount of money (I don’t know the exact cost of the surgery because some of the bills came after I left for London, but I know with the discount it was still over $15,000). On top of all this, we needed to pay for my tuition and housing in London by the beginning of October. I felt sick about the whole situation, especially knowing how much I was costing them in the month of September alone. My dad told me not to worry about it, and that he would figure it out. And that is exactly what he did.

Stating his case, he wrote a letter to the hospital (on my behalf) telling them my situation (unemployed student with no insurance) and asking for help with the enormous bill. We waited for weeks for a response, hoping for any good news. Finally, a few weeks ago, my dad received a letter from Vanderbilt. After reviewing my case, they decided to cover 100% of my hospital bills.

100%!

I could not believe it. None of us could. Just like that, I felt a weight lifted off my shoulders. I know my parents felt the same way. My dad, in his masterful way, took care of it. I think even he surprised himself with this outcome. Even at 26, I feel like a young grasshopper when my dad does everything in his power to make something happen.

Much to learn you still have – Yoda

I hope everyone had an incredible Thanksgiving!

Ciao,
Sheila

Advertisement

1 Comment

Filed under Family, Friends, Movie Reference, Song Reference

Found myself in the city near Piccadilly

Who has been the worst blog updater ever? That would be Me!

I feel that emergency eye surgery is a good enough excuse though. Well, that and dealing with moving BACK to London.

The EYE

My eye is doing better. I’m stuck wearing glasses, which isn’t too bad except for when it rains (which it does just about every day). I’m really hoping that by November I can get back to contacts. On sunny days, I am still rocking the big sunglasses since they are so big, I can wear them over my glasses. They are pretty amazing and I’ll probably keep them for those sunny days when I’m too lazy, tired, or hung over to wear my contacts. People who wear contacts know the days I am talking about.

LONDON

I have officially moved back to London and started classes. I’m living in a two bedroom flat in a student housing building very close to central London. I definitely like it here and I’m close to 3 tube stations that can take me pretty much anywhere in London. For places that are close, I can take the bus or even walk if I have my umbrella with me.

SCHOOL

It’s definitely taking some time to adjust back to “school life”, especially since for the past 12 months I’ve been living the “do nothing life”. We had induction for 2 days last week and that definitely helped. There are about 30 people in our class who come from all over the world with totally different backgrounds. It has been fun getting to know everyone, where they come from, and why they’re doing this short but intense program.

I’d be lying if I told you I wasn’t a little intimidated at the beginning. Again, after doing things on my own time table this past year, I know it is going to be an adjustment getting back into school mode. I just have to remind myself I’m 5 years older than the last time I was in school (I can’t believe it has been that long!) and I can definitely do this if I just manage my time and focus.

Oh, and we started a blog for our program where we’ll be talking music biz. You can check it out here.

Etc, Etc.

I started reading “Dirty, Sexy, Politics” by Meghan McCain a couple of days ago and I totally recommend it. Whether or not you’re into politics, whether you are republican or democrat, it doesn’t matter! It is a fun read. Also, for my friends in Nashville, there’s an entire chapter devoted to her night out in our amazing city after the Presidential debate at Belmont.

Finally, if you haven’t already, you should check out The XX. Amazon is selling the digital CD for $6.99 (iTunes has it for $9.99), and I’m not even sure if the physical album is available in the US yet.

Sorry for the boring photo-less post, but I promise to put up  a more exciting post soon.

Ciao,

Sheila

1 Comment

Filed under Moving, Ridiculousness, School, Song Reference, Things to do, Travel

Just A Little Bit of Pixie Dust

Now, think of the happiest things – Peter Pan

For little baby Leone’s baptism, Dario and Paola decided to have a big summer/baptism party. The theme: Peter Pan!

Captain Hook's Pirate Ship

The party the second Sunday after I arrived and everyone spent a good amount of time preparing. The entire property was transformed! Masks, costumes, fairy wings, and sets were all created and just about everyone who attended played a role.

The "set" for the party

Water balloons for the big attack

Once the kids arrived, they were shown a music video with a montage of clips from the movie set to the song “L’isola che non c’e’” from the Italian version of Peter Pan the Musical. Then, all the kids (and several adults) were assigned roles from Capitan Hook and the pirates, to the Indians and the Lost Children. They all got dressed in their costumes, masks, and face paint and then they were off on their adventure!

The kids starting on their adventure!

My favorite thing that was built for the party was Capitan Hook’s pirate ship! It was amazing! The pirates were armed with hoses, water guns, and water balloons so that by the end of the “attack” everyone was drenched!

The Pirates preparing for attack

Attack!

Then the Indians captured some of the adults, and the kids had to pick raspberries to help free them.

Picking raspberries

The ransom paid to free the adults

From here, they headed back up to the ship where attack number two took place, and soon everyone had jumped into the pool!

The whole thing took maybe 1.5 hours and all the kids (and adults) had a blast!

Sangria!

Of course, there was a ton of food, and Dario even made sangria from scratch and it was wonderful! Perfect for the summer heat. Here are a couple of the appetizers we munched on.

Bruschetta

mozzarella, eggplant, and tomatoes

Unfortunately, around this time it started to rain so we had to move the party inside, but the fun continued as we ate hot dogs and cut into two beautiful cakes that Paula’s aunt Silvana made (see photos below). Little Leone slept through most of the day, but I have a feeling there will be more parties similar to this one in his future.

Lion cake for Leone

Barbie cake for Allegra

As promised, I’m going to showcase a different Italian city during the next few posts. Last time I wrote about Milan. Now, check out my post on Bergamo.

Ciao,

Sheila

1 Comment

Filed under Book Reference, Italiano, Movie Reference, Song Reference