Drowning in Gratitude

WP_20170124_003The June calendar is making me realize not only how lucky I am but just how many really special people I call friends, both near and far. As Daniela prepares to transition from elementary to middle school, I’m measuring the impact some extraordinary teachers have had on the student she’s become. One of them: Vanessa Ryan, has been Daniela’s confidant for both third and fifth grade. She recognizes, in Daniela, the value of Daniela’s annual trek to Tuscany. Ms. Ryan has allowed Daniela to share her passion for all things Italian, including her weekly attendance in a college Italian language class. I have confidence the reason Daniela thrives in this class is, in part, because of this special classroom leader. Another friendship for which I am grateful and delivers me great joy will be traveling with us on this voyage. Friend, Publisher, and all-around-interesting-man Ethan Yarbrough, along with his bride and two great boys, will be making the trip to Montanare with us in a couple weeks from now. Ethan joined us alone in Italy last year to launch Ten Years in Tuscany (in Tuscany and Rome), but this year’s trip will be an opportunity to share lifetime memories with his family and hopefully, when we are long gone, his boys, Daniela, and whomever else they collect during their human experience will accompany them to one of the most beautiful places on earth.

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