21 Comments
Apr 12, 2023Liked by Belle Chesler

Love this one. Who knew? Weird lighting and dog shit, huh? So real. Cleo is so normal in her "abnormal" life. Love her too. Italians resting on their laurels with regard to pizza! Hah! So wrenching to quit your job. Understand though.

I haven't read a book as good as Demon Copperhead in a while. Kingsolver at her best. Thanks for these. Always illuminating. With the correct lightbulbs.

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Apr 12, 2023Liked by Belle Chesler

You were the first to recommend Demon Copperhead to me. Forgot to thank you til now. I agree with you and Belle a hundred percent.

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So good, right? I went down a rabbit hole on her IG in the middle of the night last night. There’s a great couple of posts with reading recommendations.

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I'll look. I sent you Parnassus Books on IG too. It's Ann Patchett's bookstore and she makes lots of recommendations..

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Apr 12, 2023Liked by Belle Chesler

I'm so into your symmetrical international sabbatical shifts towards flourishing.

Have you thought about writing?

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You’re my favorite troll. 😘

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Apr 12, 2023Liked by Belle Chesler

Oh my goodness so much love for every post you have written. Your dissolving bathing suit made me laugh out loud. We have all had that experience of putting on a bathing suit we think is OK only to find out once saturated it is practically invisible and has no elasticity whatsoever. I disagree about Pizza because I love love love Neopolitan pizza but yes Tuscan bread sucks and it tasteless. The part about dog crap was funny and so true and so sad really.... poop bags anyone? I also loved and could completely relate to the reality of frequent travel with your family unit and how at any given time it is likely that someone is in a crappy mood or sick or wants you to buy them something they don't need. We definitely experienced that and it could be Tom or me or Kelly and Conner. Family breeds contempt... oops I meant familiarity.... ;) Best of luck and prayers for your future endeavors. Thanks for always keeping it real.

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💯! Wish you could take us on a tour of all your favorite pizzas places!

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Apr 12, 2023Liked by Belle Chesler

What fun! I felt like I was sitting with you catching up on everything big and small, laughing a lot and feeling close. Soon!

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So soon❤️

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Apr 12, 2023Liked by Belle Chesler

OMG, Forever.....I'm dying. Also read Demon Copperhead and I can't stop thinking about it, soooo good! We just got back from Oregon and I'm so sad you weren't there but we will see each other one of these days!

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Curious to know if he liked any of the schools!

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Would love to hear your thoughts on OSU!

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OSU is a front runner. He's only a sophomore but our niece is at U of O and we wanted to visit her so we stopped in Corvallis on our way from Portland to Eugene. He liked the rural feel and may be interested in Forestry or Agriculture.....love him and he's such a funny, interesting kid, Joel and I are trying to figure out where he came from! Ha!

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Apr 13, 2023·edited Apr 13, 2023

Also, just saw that there is going to be Judy Bloome Documentary on Amazon Prime coming out 4/21 and it's called FOREVER!

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Apr 12, 2023Liked by Belle Chesler

Enjoyed reading your post as always. Love that you see it as it is.....that’s why I love to visit and always love to come back.

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I’ll bet! Wish we could go to Switzerland this time around. Our visa situation has us stuck in Italy, it’s torturous to be so close and not be able to visit!

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Apr 12, 2023Liked by Belle Chesler

Thank you for carrying me around in your pocket.

Yes, life is definitely messy.

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Apr 13, 2023·edited Apr 13, 2023Author

Thanks for reading, Kathy.❤️

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While Italy isn't Central America with birds, it's certainly provided an opportunity to view life through a different lens. And, it can be an excellent launching pad for what you choose to do next. Based on your posts, you've grown a lot during this adventure, as an individual and as a family. And you seem to be peeling back some of the armor you've been wearing. Your community is here for you, rooting you on, even if it's virtually and not standing next to you (where I think we can agree, a lot of us would like to be as you wander the churches, museums, and observe the people). Your "next" will find you and you'll know it when it shows up. Pay attention, listen to your heart, and you'll find yourself in your "next" before you know it. Hugs

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Belle! Last Monday was my last day at my academic job and I feel as though a weight has been lifted! I've already been able to lean into my freelance writing work with so much more energy and drive. I'm excited for you to go on your own journey post-teaching. I know you are going to do great things.

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