Saturday, April 30, 2011

Chocolate biscuit cake recipe

First I should explain the theory behind chocolate biscuit cake (for those untutored in these matters): melt lots of chocolate, add in some broken digestive biscuits, leave to set. Couldn’t be simpler, really. If you’re in the US and don’t know what a digestive biscuit is, think graham cracker.

As you can see, this contains a humungous amount of chocolate. The original recipe stated that this amount would make dessert for 10-12 people. I would say that you could feed many more than that, as it is unashamedly rich. You could easily make half this amount and still keep yourself in biscuit cake for days. The other thing to say, of course, is that because this is mostly just chocolate, the quality of the chocolate really matters.

Ingredients:
400g milk chocolate
250g dark chocolate
200g white chocolate
150g unsalted butter
275g golden syrup
275g digestive biscuits
some good quality salt, such as fleur de sel, to sprinkle on top (optional)

You’ll also need:
A large heatproof bowl for melting the chocolate mixture plus some kind of baking tray or dish to hold the chocolate biscuit mixture while it sets. I used a 28cm x 18cm x 3cm baking tin, which was just about big enough to hold this amount.

Preparation:
Line your dish or tray with greaseproof or parchment paper.
Break each digestive biscuit into 3 or 4 pieces.
Break all of the chocolate into very small pieces or chop finely.
Cut the butter into small pieces.
Place your heatproof bowl over a pot of hot (but not simmering) water and over a very low heat. Add the golden syrup and butter.
Once the butter has started melting, stir in the chocolate pieces and, stirring constantly, allow the whole mixture to melt together gently.
Remove from the heat as soon as the chocolate has melted. Add the biscuit pieces and stir to combine.
Fill your dish or tray with the chocolate biscuit mixture and, if you like, sprinkle with fleur de sel or other salt flakes.
Allow to set in the fridge for about 2 hours, then cut into slices of whatever size and shape you desire.

The Variations:
For some reason, I fancy adding some very finely grated or juiced fresh ginger to this.

The Results:
If you cut the slab into pieces measuring roughly 3cm x 3cm, you’ll get around 45 little chocolate biscuit cubes.

Friday, April 29, 2011

Celebrating Prince William and Kate's Wedding with two cakes!

Today is THE big day.

The whole world has its eyes turned towards Westminster Abbey to watch Prince William and Kate Middleton tying the knot. Etiquette, Protocol, Attire have been scrutinized, commmented and discussed by media across the globe. The press has been full of the Royal Wedding. We know where the happy event will take place, what car Kate will be arriving in, which carriage will be decorated for the Prince & Princess' departure, where the Parade route takes them, which worldy royals will attend the ceremony, etc, etc, etc.

I will not bore you with facts that we have all been bombarded with over the last weeks. I cannot spill the beans about Katherine's wedding dress either because I have no clue, just like the rest of the world.

I do however wish to introduce the person whom William and Kate have designated as their wedding cake designer: Fiona Cairns. Fiona Cairns Ltd began on Fiona’s kitchen table 25 years ago, when Kishore Patel – Fiona’s husband and now managing director of the company – spotted the potential of his wife’s beautifully crafted handmade cakes. In 2001, Kishore joined the company full time and the business moved out of their garden and into a state of the art bakery in Leicestershire, the heart of the English countryside. Trained as a graphic designer as well as a pastry chef, Fiona is perfectly placed to create gorgeous and delicious cakes. The company prides itself on being creative and – besides providing cakes for seasonal celebrations – ensures its fabulous handmade cakes reflect current trends.

Fiona Cairns will create a multi-tiered traditional fruit cake with cream and white icing for the royal couple, according to a statement issued from the Royal Press Office. The matrimonial dessert will also feature a strong British floral theme, using the intricate piping elements of the Joseph Lambeth method.

Additionally, the couple has also asked McVitie's Cake Company to create a chocolate biscuit cake for the reception at Buckingham Palace. The chocolate biscuit cake will be made from a Royal Family recipe and was specially requested by Prince William. What is known is that huge cake will contain 17 kilos of chocolate and some 1,700 of the company's "Rich Tea" brand cookies - enough to feed all 600 guests.

Stay tuned for the Chocolate biscuit Cake recipe tomorrow!

Thursday, April 28, 2011

The infinte trip of a teabag!

"A woman is like a tea bag - you can't tell how strong she is until you put her in hot water."
Eleanor Roosevelt

Every true Brit (my mother is one of them) has his/her favorite tea, appreciated for its unique taste and aroma. The secret of good quality tea lies in its blending. Blending tea gives it subtle tones and flavors. Blending tea is an art-form. No two teas are ever the same, even if they're from the same estate. Like wine, the quality of tea varies enormously according to country of origin, weather conditions, altitudes and the structure and quality of the soil.

When Sir Thomas Lipton created his company in the late 19th century, he bought his first tea estate in Ceylon. More than 100 years of firsts and innovations has enabled Lipton to bring more tea enjoyment to more people in the world than any other tea company.  Building on the experience of over a century in growing and blending tea, Lipton has kept alive Sir's Thomas's love of innovation and expertise.

Let yourself be transported by Lipton's French site onto an infinte trip of the virtual world of tea.


Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Moving to Switzerland - Lugano

"If you don't hurry up and let life know what you want, life will damned soon show you what you'll get."
Robertson Davies

Switzerland is a popular destination for emigrants from all around the world: there are decent job offers, the working conditions are good and thanks to low taxes enough money is left for a comfortable life at the end of the month. Apart from a high living standard, the country offers beautiful and diversified landscapes, an well-developed infrastructure of public transport and a citizen-orienteed political system. Therefore it is not surprising that almost 120,000 people decided on moving to Switzerland last year.

Residents' Registration Office:
After arrival in Switzerland, you must register with your local area office within eight days (if you begin work before this, you must register prior to starting work).
Necessary documents:
- Valid proof of identity (for yourself and each family member)
- Proof of health insurance (compulsory basic health insurance)
- 1 passport photo (of yourself and each family member)
- Civil status documents (e.g. marriage certificate, birth certificate of children under the age of majority, etc.)
- Contract of employment

Personal liability and household insurance:
It's essential to take out a personal liability insurance for yourself and any family members living in the same household. If you cause any bodily or material damage to others, then you are liable by law and must pay the financial consequences of the damage. Without insurance this can be a long and costly business. You should also insure the contents of your new apartment. Household insurance compensates damages arising from fire, water, theft or glass breakage. comparis.ch will compare on your behalf the premiums offered by major Swiss insurance companies for personal liability and household coverage.
Click here to compare personal liability and household insurance.

Compulsory health insurance:
According to health insurance laws, basic health insurance is mandatory for all persons resident in Switzerland. You must therefore take out basic insurance at the minimum. You must conclude basic health insurance within a period of 3 months after your arrival.
Click here to compare: Basic health insurance or Family health insurance

Car registration:
Deadline for car registration:
Importation as a personal effect: 12 months.
Importation as a new car: 1 month.

Car insurance:
In order to register the vehicle in Switzerland you will need proof of insurance with a Swiss insurance company.
Click here to compare car insurance.

Driving Licence:
Your foreign driving licence is valid in Switzerland for the first 12 months. After this period a Swiss driving licence is compulsory. During the first year you can exchange your foreign driving licence for a Swiss licence at the vehicle and driver registration office in Camorino, near Bellinzona (Uffficio circolazione). If you miss this deadline, you will have to take the Swiss driving test.


...and if you obey all the rules you are almost Swiss!


Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Swiss Watching by D.Bewes

"To travel is to live"
Hans Christian Andersen

The London travel writer, Diccon Bewes, has lived in Bern for five years. What could be more obvious, therefore, than writing a book about Switzerland, this island within Europe. "How come that the Alpine republic has managed to make its products famous the the world over, but hasn't produced many well-known citizens?" Bewes wondered. So, he bought himself a rail pass and set off to find out "how this enigmatic country ticks".

Bewes' Swiss Watching: Inside Europe's Landlocked Island offers 300 pages of striking and humorous insights into Switzerland. Poignant and full of British humour, he describes Switzerland and its "sometimes quirky" people as a product of the country’s geography and its history, religion, politics and wealth.

Just check out his crash course to all things Swiss, from A to Z, which is one of the most popular posts from his blog at: http://swisswatching.wordpress.com



Diccon Bewes' "Swiss Watching" (Nicolas Brealey Publishing)
can be purchased online at Orell Füessli and costs CHF 30.50.

Monday, April 25, 2011

The Swiss' favourite sports activities

"Sports do not build character. They reveal it."
John Wooden


The Swiss population is very athletic. 11% follow their passion daily, 37% of Switzerland's population do sports several times a week, 17% once a week while 27 percent say that they are not physically active.


Both summer and winter sports are extremely popular among the Swiss. The country's Alpine peaks provide a setting for skiing, bobsledding, tobogganing, mountain walking, and climbing. After skiing, snow boarding and ice skating are Switzerland's favorite winter sport. Summer activities include cycling, hiking, tennis, golf, fishing, and a variety of water sports. Two especially popular sports are handball and soccer.


Traditional Swiss sports are still enjoyed at festivals. These include the baseball-like Hornussen, or farmer's tennis, and stone-putting Steinstossen, where the object is to throw a stone weighing 184 pounds (80 kilograms) as far as possible. In Swiss wrestling Schwingen, each wrestler wears a pair of canvas-like shorts over his pants and tries to throw his opponent to the ground by grabbing hold of these shorts.

Ranking of the Swiss' favourite sports activites:
35.0 % Cycling, Mountainbike
33.7 % Hiking, Walking
25.4 % Swimming
21.7 % Skiing
16.8 % Jogging, Running
14.0 % Fitness, Aerobic
11.7 % Gymnastics
6.9 % Football, Streetsoccer
4.7 % Snowboard
4.4 % Tennis
(Source: Bundesamt für Sport / Studie Sport Schweiz 2008)

So, if you're on holiday this week why not take your kids and your bikes and head for some adventure. Discover a new side of Ticino. Ticino offers something for everyone from a purely panorama ride to "Trailthrill total" hike.

This interactive map includes 42 trails: www.lugano-tourism.ch
For each route there is comprehensive and precise information: short description, elevation profile and basic data such as length, elevation meters, travel time, highest point and route condition.

Happy cycling!



Swiss Hornussen

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Happy Easter from Lugano, Switzerland

Guess who's hop, hop, hopping your way?
To wish you a hap, hap, happy Holiday.
Loaded with goodies made just for you.
It's the Easter Bunny 
That's who.


Lindt's golden chocolate Easter bunny 
has become an instituion in Switzerland.
(Manor is Lugano's one and only department store!)


Supermarkets filled to the rim with Swiss Chocolate Easter eggs


Chocolate "Kinder" Easter eggs - an Italian import


Traditional Swiss Chocolate Easter bunnies....where do I start?


The choice just goes on and on!
Guess what, my kids and I will be munching on chocolate to our hearts delights during the holidays.

Wishing all of you a very Happy Easter!


Saturday, April 23, 2011

Discover the universe of Miss Dior Chérie

“My mother says that when I was little my grandfather used to take me and my cousins on one side after dinner and ask us what we wanted to be when he grew up, and I’d say ‘Christian Dior’,” recalled the French fashion designer Christian Lacroix.” He was so famous in France at the time. It seemed as if he wasn’t a man, but an institution.”



Christian Dior, son of a wealthy Norman manufacturer of chemicals and fertilizer, wanted to be an architect, but his family insisted he enter the diplomatic service. He prepared for a diplomatic career at the Ecole des Sciences Politiques but abandoned diplomacy in 1928 and became an art dealer. Illness forced him to give up that business in 1934, and when he returned to Paris a year later, it was as a fashion illustrator - first of hats, later of dresses.

In 1946, when World War II cloth rationing was lifted, Dior opened his own salon. In the spring of 1947 the success of his first collection, called the "New Look," propelled him to the top of the French fashion industry. His idealized, ultrafeminine silhouette featured tiny waists; long, full skirts; padded busts; and rounded shoulders. Everything was made exquisitely of the best materials available. The New Look changed the shape of women's clothing and lifted the French fashion industry out of the doldrums. For this feat a grateful French government awarded him the Legion of Honor.

His successive collections (including the "H-Line" in 1954 and the "A-Line" in 1955) continued to be popular, and throughout the 1950s the fashion world looked to Paris and Dior for inspiration and style. He expanded his company into eight firms and sixteen associate firms in twenty-four countries, reportedly grossing some $20 million a year. His Dior label went on jewelry, scarves, men's ties, furs, stockings, gloves, and ready-to-wear clothing.

Although Christian Dior died in 1957, he is perhaps one of the most famous fashion designers of both the 20th and 21st centuries. In the years after the debut of his first collection in 1947 he was a legendary figure and the world press developed an extraordinary love affair with him, increasing their enthusiasm with each new collection. Dior never disappointed them, constantly creating clothes that were newsworthy as well as beautiful.

After his death the House of Dior continued under other designers, including his protégé Yves St. Laurent until 1960, then Marc Bohan and the (in-famous) John Galliano.

The Fashion world now awaits his successor, Riccardo Tisci's first show with curiosity.

In the meantime, enter into the fragrance universe of Christian Dior. Watch the new commercial directed by Sofia Coppola and featuring Natalie Portman for the Christian Dior perfume, "Miss Dior Chérie", and listen to the famous French song “Je t’aime… moi non plus” by Jane Birkin and Serge Gainsbourg playing in the background.

Open the various boxes by pulling the ribbon and let yourself be drifted away into a sweet world full of luxury.



Friday, April 22, 2011

Expat with kids is on vacation!

"A good holiday is one spent among people whose notions of time are vaguer than yours."
John B. Priestly

The kids' Easter holidays begin today and we are off on a holiday of a lifetime! We are actually flying out of Lugano airport. Now, that is a first: usually we need to trek down to Milano Malpensa to catch an International flight because the local airport only serves 4 International destinations!!!

But not to worry, I would never desert my readers. So stay tuned and enjoy the daily entertainment I have lined up for you while I'm suntanning on South Miami Beach.




Wishing you a Happy Easter!

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Celebrate Earth Day on April 22nd

"We do not inherit the earth from our ancestors, we borrow it from our children."
Native American Proverb

Did you know that the first Earth Day was celebrated by the United States on April 22, 1970 to promote the preservation of the environment? Today, people in over 140 countries celebrate Earth Day.

Earth Day Network estimates that 500 million people from 4,500 organizations in 180 countries will participate in Earth Day events during the month of April.

You can teach your kids how important it is to care for our planet with some simple strategies. The book, Just a Dream, by Chris Van Allsburg (Houghton Mifflin, 1990) is a great story to use as a springboard for ideas. The main character has a dream about the future in a world where littering and pollution have become commonplace. Give your kids a copy of the Recycle reproducible and ask them to create environmental posters that promote respect for our Earth. Then, proudly display them in and around the house.

You can also brainstorm different ways to help the environment at home such as conserving energy by turning off the lights when you leave the room, recycling newspapers and soda cans, or composting. Share the Brainstorm House reproducible with kids, then give them time to draw pictures of different things they can do at home to help the environment.

Take small steps:
There are dozens of small things your kids can do every day to save energy and keep the world cleaner and greener. Here are some ways you can encourage your kids to go green during Earth Day and if your child develops good habits now, they’ll endure as he/she grows.
- Switch off the light when leaving a room and turn off the TV when no longer watching.
- Shut off the water when brushing teeth
- Walk, ride a bike or take the bus instead of traveling by car
- Take faster showers or baths in just a small amount of water
- Help hang clothes on the line instead of putting them in the dryer
- Choose products that are not over packaged

Recycle:
Explain to your kids that every bottle and can they use is waste that just sits in a big pile at the local dump if we don’t recycle. Get them involved by making it their job to sort recyclables and take them out for pickup.

Should any of my readers be homeschooling their kids, please click on this link by Carson-Dellosa Publishing about Earth Day which makes for a great lesson.

Another fascinating link is Earth Science enterprise: for kids only! NASA studies the earth, not just outer space, and has created this earth science site for kids and their teachers and filled it to the brim with information, lesson plans, and games.

If you are looking for a grooving Earth Day site to share with your kids, check out: Kaboose globe-rider link.

So tell me, what is your contribution to Earth Day?

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Organic food in Switzerland

"We are living in a world today where lemonade is made from artificial flavors and furniture polish is made from real lemons."
Alfred E. Newman

Switzerland lays great stress on environmentally friendly farming, although it involves greater costs.

The Swiss journal "Kultur und Politik" reported on organic farming starting in 1946. Organic food was sold directly to customers by post, to the cooperative Migros and to food-enterprises belonging to the Reform movement. During the 1960s organic-biological farming concepts spread from Switzerland to Austria and Germany.

Professional organizations concerned with extension, certification and marketing were established during the 1980's. There was an upsurge in the number of farms producing organic food in the 1990s. By 2009 some 11.1% of all farms had been awarded the organic symbol: a white bud in a green circle.

Organic farming is particularly popular in mountain areas. Figures issued by the Federal Statistical Office showed that in 2009 20% of mountain farms were organic. That year the Swiss spent 170 francs per head on organic produce, in particular vegetables, fruit and eggs.

Of all European countries Switzerland, along with Austria, has the highest proportion of usable land given over to organic farming.

In 1992 Switzerland announced that battery chicken farming was to be phased out - another world first. The addition of antibiotics to animal feed has been forbidden since 1998. Hormones are also banned. But such strict regulations put farmers under pressure when it comes to producing food at prices consumers are willing to pay.


You will find organic and natural foods products in every Swiss town. They are sold in most supermarkets and in some pharmacies. Some towns will have a natural foods store. Organic products are called "bio". The Coop stores have a selection of organic or "bio" products (called "Natura Plan"). Migros also offers bio products. You will find the bio products grouped together in each section.


Look for a "Reform Haus" sign; this means natural foods. If a  pharmacy has a sign saying "Reform Haus" or "Reform", they will have a small natural foods section.

For more detailed information go directly to the Swiss bio link here: http://www.bio-suisse.ch

The most enjoyable way to shop for healthy food, however, is to visit your local fresh food market. Most towns and villages have a weekly market selling local, seasonal farm produce, fresh fruit and vegetables and organic foods, as well as flowers. The Lugano market offers the typical food products of small farmers that sell their goods directly. It takes place every Tuesday and Friday from 8am to 12am in Piazza Riforma.

From March through June, there is a second market "contadino" at the Quartiere Maghetti of Lugano on Thursdays from 9am to 1pm selling fruit, vegetables, bread, cheese and meats from Ticino and the Grison. Check it out: www.quartieremaghetti.ch.

Following are 3 addresses of the best known Bio stores in Lugano:

Sapori Bio
salita M. e A. Chiattone 18 (behind downtown Manor)
6900 Lugano
Phone: 091 / 922 04 64

Müller Reformhaus Vital Shop AG
Quartiere Maghetti 10
6900 Lugano
Phone: 091 / 922 96 87

Bio Casa 5 Stelle SA
via Lugano 21
6982 Agno
Phone: 091 / 604 56 19

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

New Shoe Store opened in Lugano - TOP SHOES

Choosing Shoes
by Frida Wolfe

New shoes, new shoes,
Red and pink and blue shoes.
Tell me, what would you choose,
If they'd let us buy?

Buckle shoes, bow shoes,
Pretty pointy-toe shoes,
Strappy, cappy low shoes;
Let's have some to try.

Bright shoes, white shoes,
Dandy-dance-by-night shoes,
Perhaps-a-little-tight shoes,
Like some? So would I.

BUT
Flat shoes, fat shoes,
Stump-along-like-that shoes,
Wipe-them-on-the-mat shoes,
That's the sort they'll buy.




Once upon a time there was a young charming entrepreneur who had a dream. He took a gutsy decision to leave his comfy job with a multinational company to open up his own universe. With passion and intuition and a little help from his family he created a setting full of fantasy in the center of Lugano. An oasis for shoe lovers.

He learned about his customers and how to cater for them. Desire and business were finely balanced and he is now ready to welcome you, to reveal the talent and disclose his expertise.

As Bette Midler put it so nicely: “Give a girl the correct footwear and she can conquer the world.”

Don't miss visiting this new exquisite shoe store next time you're down town.

TOP SHOES
at Via degli Albrizzi 1, 6900 Lugano
(right next to the Museo Cantonale d'Arte)


Monday, April 18, 2011

Easter in Lugano's center (Pasqua in città)

"For I remember it is Easter morn, and life and love and peace are all new born."
Alice Freeman Palmer

Join the festive atmosphere of Easter in the City and explore the numerous intriguing and entertaining activities for young and old.

Every year Easter draws a myriad of vacationers and travelers to Lugano. In order to add some zest to the picturesque city center, Lugano Turismo has organized an event called "Pasqua in Città" (Easter in the City), which will take place from Friday, April 22nd through Monday, April 25th, 2011.



Every day form 11 a.m. to 6.00 p.m. “Easter in Town” will transform the city centre into a fun and amusing stage: each of the main city squares will be hosting a different entertainment programme. The public will have the opportunity of purchasing numerous objects and many products of the local tradition, which will be exhibited on more than 100 stalls that will be set up in Piazza Riforma, Via Nassa, Piazza Dante, Via Pessina and Via Soave.

As for the musical events of this initiative, the pedestrian centre will be animated by traditional and folk groups.

There will also be three concerts held in Piazza Riforma. Besides the expected and traditional Easter Concert by the Lugano Civic Philharmonic programmed for Sunday morning, April 24th at 10.30 a.m., on Friday evening, at 8.30 p.m., the concert by the Castagnola Philharmonic will be held, while on Saturday, April 3rd at the same time of the evening the Pregassona Philharmonic will steal the show.

Where: Lugano-City Center
When: April 22nd to 25th, 2011
Time: 11:00 to 18:00

So if you're planning to stay in town over Easter get ready to discover your own back yard!

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Celebrate World Book and Copywrite Day at Parco Ciani in Lugano

World Book and Copywrite Day is a yearly event on 23 April, organized by UNESCO to promote reading, publishing and the protection of intellectual property through copyright.

The connection between 23 April and books was first made in 1923 by booksellers in Spain as a way to honour the author Miguel de Cervantes who died on that day. This became a part of the celebrations of the Saint George's Day (also 23 April) in Catalonia, where it has been traditional since the medieval era for men to give roses to their lovers and since 1925 for the woman to give a book in exchange. Half the yearly sales of books in Catalonia are at this time with over 400,000 sold and exchanged for over 4 million roses.

In 1995, UNESCO decided that the World Book and Copyright Day would be celebrated on this date because of the Catalonian festival and because the date is also the anniversary of the birth and death of William Shakespeareas well as the death of Miguel de Cervantes.

On the occasion of World Book and Copyright, the Lugano's Department of Youth will inaugurate an event named "park&read" on Sunday, April 17, at the Parco Ciani. Everyone is invited for an aperitivo at 11:00 near Darsena.

The idea behind this event is to indulge in culture surrounded by nature, to seize the opportunity throughout Summer to relax on lounge chairs while reading a book, magazine or newspaper in the beautiful Parco Ciani.

"park&read" will be open every weekend from Sunday, April 17th to May 29th, 2011 from 11:00 to 18:00, and thereafter daily from June until late summer.

The consultation of magazines, newspapers and books is free, while the use of the deckchairs is CHF 1.- for 1/2 hour, 1hour = CHF 2 + CHF 1.- per add. hour. Maybe next year they will add a sandy beach to the offer. ;)

What: "park&read" surrounded by nature
Where: Parco Ciani, 6900 Lugano
When: every weekend from Sunday, April 17th to May 29th, 2011 from 11:00 to 18:00, daily from June until late summer
Time: 11:00 to 18:00




Saturday, April 16, 2011

Women in charge of everything

WICOE
(Women In Charge Of Everything)
Is proud to announce the opening of its

EVENING CLASSES FOR MEN!
OPEN TO MEN ONLY
ALL ARE WELCOME
Note: due to the complexity and level of difficulty, each course will accept a maximum of eight participants
The course covers two days, and topics covered in this course include:

DAY ONE
HOW TO FILL ICE CUBE TRAYS
Step by step guide with slide presentation
TOILET ROLLS- DO THEY GROW ON THE HOLDERS?
Roundtable discussion
DIFFERENCES BETWEEN LAUNDRY BASKET & FLOOR
Practising with hamper (Pictures and graphics)
DISHES & SILVERWARE;
DO THEY LEVITATE/FLY TO KITCHEN SINK OR DISHWASHER BY THEMSELVES?
Debate among a panel of experts.
REMOTE CONTROL
Losing the remote control - Help line and support groups
LEARNING HOW TO FIND THINGS
Starting with looking in the right place
Instead of turning the house upside down while screaming - Open forum


DAY TWO

EMPTY MILK CARTONS;
DO THEY BELONG IN THE FRIDGE OR THE BIN?
Group discussion and role play
HEALTH WATCH;
BRINGING HER FLOWERS IS NOT HARMFUL TO YOUR HEALTH
PowerPoint presentation
REAL MEN ASK FOR DIRECTIONS WHEN LOST
Real life testimonial from the one man who did
IS IT GENETICALLY IMPOSSIBLE TO SIT QUIETLY
AS SHE PARALLEL PARKS?
Driving simulation
LIVING WITH ADULTS;
BASIC DIFFERENCES BETWEEN
YOUR MOTHER AND YOUR PARTNER
Online class and role playing
HOW TO BE THE IDEAL SHOPPING COMPANION
Relaxation exercises, meditation and breathing techniques
REMEMBERING IMPORTANT DATES
& CALLING WHEN YOU'RE GOING TO BE LATE
Bring your calendar or PDA to class
GETTING OVER IT;
LEARNING HOW TO LIVE WITH BEING WRONG ALL THE TIME



Have a lovely weekend!

Friday, April 15, 2011

Milano's Salone Internazionale del Mobile 2011

Milan has long been regarded as one of the international capitals of industrial and modern design, as well as one of the world’s most influential cities in fashion. The host of FieraMilano, Salone del Mobile and Milan Fashion Week, and the home of Teatro alla Scala and the iconic Milan Cathedral, the Milan’s steeped history in design makes it one of the most important hubs of creativity in the world.

Despite its common label as a furniture fair, Salone Internazionale del Mobile has become much more: most importantly, it has become a key event in the luxury calendar where furniture manufacturers and luxury brands look to showcase their creativity and innovation, and where the world’s most influential designers, journalists and professionals converge to discuss and analyse the latest technologies, materials and trends.

Your incognitio Expat reporter went to tour the exhibition yesterday and indulged in a world of luxury and design. Here are but a few impressions I wished to share with you.



Benvenuti to the fair grounds!


That's me...


I'll have one of those as my vault please!


What a spectacular stand wall


Ahh, which one to choose???


Recycling is in....a chair made of cardboard!


A boy's dream bedroom...Forza Italia!


Delicate lighting


Heavens above


I wonder if those ballons would fit in my living room?


Philippe Starck...no comment needed


Looks interesting....


...let's take a closer look.


Did you know Christian Lacroix produced furniture and mosaics? 


My favourite furniture brand: Kartell


Missoni's retreat


Scandinavian design for a change


Delicate design


We like glitter!


One funky mirror


Expat boy would love one of those please!


Original and groovy stand


The new Fiat 500 is the item to have in Europe


Pink delight


Feminine chic

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Kitchen stores in Lugano

"If you want breakfast in bed......sleep in the kitchen!"

I strongly feel that the kitchen is the heart of a home and is therefore worth investing in. However, if you move around the globe like we do, it is tough dragging it along. Subsequent to my list of furniture stores, I have listed the kitchen stores in and around Lugano. My personal experience with Scavolini kitchens (available at arredopiu) has been excellent. I have installed three of them over the past 10 years and have been very happy with design, quality and price ratio.

Further, I have added some websites of cool kitchen gadget that can be ordered online.

Kitchens:
Scavolini: http://www.lugano.scavolinistore.net (Via Serafino Balestra 12, 6900 Lugano)
Arredo Piu International: http://www.arredopiu.net/ (Via Serafino Balestra 5, 6900 Lugano)
Ernesto Meda: http://www.ernestomedalugano.ch/ (Via Pelli 5, 6900 Lugano)
Piatti: http://www.piatti.ch/en.html (Via Cantonale, 6594 Contone)
Prisma: http://www.prisma2.ch/ (Via Maggio 23 - 6900 Lugano)
5 Stelle: http://5stellelugano.ch/ (Via Clemente Maraini 40, 6900 Lugano)
Kitchen Store: http://www.grarredamenti.it/www/Pagine/MENU/Cucine.html (via Senago 44, 6912 Pazzallo)
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