Thursday, October 31, 2019

Happy Halloween

There's a goblin at my window,
a monster by my door.
The pumpkin at my table
keeps on smiling more and more.
There's a ghost who haunts my bedroom,
a witch whose face is green.
They used to be my family, 
until they dressed for Halloween!

Wednesday, October 30, 2019

Lugano in pictures

Feeling like a bride walking down the aisle of Gentilino's church

Strolling along Riva Antonio Caccia looking onto Monte Bré

Jogging past Chiesa di Muzzano on a sunny Sunday morning

"Panoptico" by Oppy de Bernardo in Piazza Alessandro Manzoni
when I was expecting a pink flamingo display

Campione d'Italia, an Italian exclave surrounded by the canton of Ticino.
Campione will formally become part of the EU customs territory in 2020; until then it de facto comes within Swiss customs control.

Where should we take the boat to?

How about Castagnola or Gandria?

Ticino's public transport service ensures many a connection across the hills.
Its distinctive features - the three-tone horn and the yellow post buses - are an integral part of Switzerland’s cultural identity.

Fondazione Hermann Hesse in Montagnola, where the German-born poet, novelist, and painter spent the second half of his life.

Breathtaking view onto Lugano from Montagnola

Following the chestnut trail in the woods of Collina d'Oro.

Tuesday, October 29, 2019

Making bagels at Mulino Maroggio

American or not... you love bagels and would like to bake them at home? This is your chance!

Join at Maroggia’s Mill on November 26th, where Ghost Bagel‘s Sean William will let you in on the secrets of how to bake crispy and chewy N.Y. bagels.

Check out the Homebaker site for other fun courses:

Venue: Bagel Baking Class in English
Where: Mulino Maroggia, Via ai Molini 2, 6817 Maroggia (
Date: Tuesday, November 26th, 2019
Time: 19:00 to 22:00
Cost: CHF 65.-
Register here:

Monday, October 28, 2019

Expat with Kids... how it all began

It has been 9 years... nine years I have been online and blogging. It all started as a challenge... a goal I set myself while living in Lugano: I was to create a blog by myself without spending a penny.

At first the ambition was to figure out how to set up a blog, however, as I dug deeper into the net and spent endless hours googling CSS coding, I realized there was a niche to be filled in the Lugano sphere.

A decade ago Switzerland's most Southern canton experienced an influx of Expats, the real estate market was at its peak and the Swiss banks were having a field day. My aim was to provide an English speaking online guide for all the city's newcomers ... et voilà... Expat with Kids was born.

I continued to self-educate myself about web design and social media marketing while promoting my funky guide to Lugano written by a American/Swiss globetrotting, chocolate-loving mum who likes sharing wacky information.

However, a few months later my hubby announced we were moving to Paris... never the one to let a hurdle stop me, I realized how passionate I had become about blogging and how much it motivated me. It was my way of being unique and part of something bigger than myself at the same time.

Therefore, Expat with Kids in Paris was born not long after.

Ever since I have kept up both blogs, the Lugano guide continues to attract readers in search of information and inspiration around town, the Paris one is a more personal account of an Expat's daily adventures in the city of lights.

How would I describe the author? A Swiss globetrotting mum, figlia di Americano, con corazòn Napoletano and a British accent based in Paris who left her heart in various parts of the world with an insatiable curiosity for beauty and knowledge. Passionate about languages and the culture that comes with it. A lover of the eclectic and the quirky - accompanied by a touch of glamour.

Happy 9th Blogaversary Expat with Kids!

Sunday, October 27, 2019

Expat with Kids turns 9!

Friday, October 25, 2019

World Pasta Day facts

Today is World Pasta Day... how could I not blog about this?

People have been eating pasta since at least 5,000 B.C. However, this delightful holiday was only established in 1995, when 40 pasta producers from around the world gathered to hold the globe’s first World Pasta Congress.

The first World Pasta Day was held in Naples in 1998. It is important to know that World Pasta Day is an annual celebration not only about pasta but also about the consumers of pasta.

The event aims to maximize promotion of an extraordinary, good, healthy, nutritious, accessible and sustainable food, a pillar of the Mediterranean Diet, recognized as an Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity by UNESCO.

Some interesting facts about pasta:
- Italian eat around 60 pounds of pasta per person per year.
- Compared to Americans who eat approx. 20 pounds per person per year.
- The most popular forms of pasta are penne and spaghetti.
- The most popular sauces are tomato ragù and carbonara.
- Al dente cooked pasta not only tastes better but keeps the stomach full for longer.
- It is said that there are more than 600 shapes of pasta worldwide.
- In Greek mythology, it is believed that the God Vulcan invented a device that made strings of dough. This was the earliest reference to a pasta maker.

So, what are you serving for dinner tonight?

Thursday, October 24, 2019

My own Toblerone

Who needs cupid when you have this delicious Toblerone bar with name and photo? This is my discovery of the week...

While browsing the internet to find a little surprise to send Expat Boy for his birthday a tempting photo popped up: a personalized Toblerone bar is the perfect gift. lets you personalize the wrapper yourself by adding the photo and/or text of your choice.

The tasty surprise includes no less than 350 grams of delicious Toblerone milk chocolate while the wrapper has a classic Toblerone design, to which you can add your own twist in no time at all.

Simply add the name of your choice and a personal message, and add the finishing touch with your favourite photo. Your design will be printed onto the wrapper, razor-sharp and in full colour and shipped within 2 days. What are you waiting for? Surprise your favourite person with a Toblerone gift!

If you truly want to get your message across there is also a 4,5kg version of Toblerone! Guaranteed success!

Tuesday, October 22, 2019

How does my idea become a project?

Do you have a teenager who would like to implement a project? Would he or she like to see more youth participation in your community, at school or anywhere else in the world? is committed to these concerns and invites youths to become active with like-minded people in a regional group or learn about the project management in their course offerings.

Breganzona is hosting a Project-Management course for the Young (15-30) during the next Fall vacation. The aim of the course is to encourage young people to develop their projects (with a large focus on no-profit projects) and to equip them with skills and practical knowledge on how to write a concept, to collect ideas, build a budget, do an elevator pitch, etc. The course is supported by the Swiss Federal Social Insurance Office (FSIO).

Venue: How does my idea become a project sponsored by
Where: Centro Giovani Breganzona, Via Polar 34, 6932 Breganzona
Date: Monday, October 28th, 2019
Time: 9:30 to 16:00
Cost: 25 CHF p.p.
For more info contact or phone 091/825'28'89
Click here to register:

Tuesday, October 15, 2019

Car Boot Sale Lugano

Have some time to spare and feel like browsing a little market, check out the Car Boot Sale organized by IWCL Evening Group (Int'l. Women's Group Lugano) on Thursday, October 17th, 2019 at the Hotel Pestalozzi.

You'll find new and used goods, brik-a-brak, jewelry, pottery, scarves, handbags, plants, wine, clothing, toys, household items and much more.

Participate in the plant exchange and enjoy a wine tasting with a range of specially selected wines.

Come along to browse and buy, to support charities or just to sit and have an aperitivo with old and new friends. Everyone is welcome.

Venue: IWCL Car Boot Sale
Where: Hotel Pestalozzi, Piazza Indipendenza 9, 6900 Lugano
Date: Thursday, October 17th, 2019
Time: 15:30 - 19:00

Monday, October 14, 2019

The Woman Who Loves Giraffes

Franklin University Switzerland (FUS) is celebrating its 50th anniversary and are inviting the public to the exclusive European premiere of the documentary "The Woman Who Loves Giraffes", followed by a panel discussion on Wednesday, October 16th, 2019 in their Nielsen Auditorium.

The University has the honour of welcoming on campus Alison Reid, award-winning director, and the protagonist, Dr. Anne Innis Dagg, the first woman in the world to study giraffes and animal behavior in the wild in Africa.

In 1956, four years before Jane Goodall ventured into the world of chimpanzees and seven years before Dian Fossey left to work with mountain gorillas – in fact, before anyone, man or woman had made such a trip – 23-year-old Canadian biologist, Anne Innis Dagg, made an unprecedented solo journey to South Africa to become the first person and woman in the world to study animal behavior in the wild on that continent. When she returned home a year later armed with ground-breaking research, the insurmountable barriers she faced as a female scientist proved much harder to overcome.

In this award-winning documentary film, Dr. Dagg offers an intimate window into her extraordinary life as a young woman and scientist, juxtaposed with a first-hand look at the devastating reality that giraffes are facing today. Her research findings ultimately became the foundation for many scientists following in her footsteps.

The screening will be followed by an Aperò where you’ll have a chance to meet Dr. Dagg in person, as well as the members of the panel discussion, Alison Reid, Franklin Trustee Kevin McNeely, and Franklin Faculty Katherine Roy and Patrick Della Croce.

Venue: European premiere of the documentary "The Woman Who Loves Giraffes"
Where: Franklin University Switzerland, Via Ponte Tresa 29, 6924 Sorengo
Date: Wednesday, October 16th, 2019
Time: 18:00 - 20:30
Free of charge
For more info call 091/985'22'60 or contact Leslie Tedoldi at

Friday, October 11, 2019

Betty Bossi, a Swiss hero

How could I resist sharing this video... it gives you a glimpse into Swiss cuisine with an International twist and a Swiss sense of humour. If you are Swiss, you'd probably agree that Betty Bossi has come a long way...

Betty Bossi is Switzerland's biggest cookbook publisher and can be found in most every household.

Hardly anyone knows her outside the Confederation, but generations of Swiss have grown up with her. Inventor of the fictitious character Betty Bossi is the Zurich advertising specialist Emmi Creola, born as Emmi Maag in 1912.

Taking inspiration from Betty Crocker, Betty Bossi was created by Emmi Creola-Maag for Unilever to help sell margarine to the butter-friendly Swiss. This took form in 1956 as a magazine style leaflet called the Betty Bossi Post, which attempted to answer the eternal question "What Shall I Cook Today?". French on one side and German on the other, the leaflet was so popular that it grew into a full magazine, and then a recipe book.

In 1977 Betty Bossi split from Unilever and it became its own, separate publishing company. The brand continued to expand, publishing countless cookbooks and expanding into TV and radio, as well as recipe development and convenience foods.

Her creature Betty Bossi became the "cook of the nation" and conquered television when no one in neighbouring Germany thought of cooking shows. Many believe that Helvetia's national cuisine would be different without Betty Bossi.

In 2012 the company was purchased outright by the supermarket chain Coop, which had previously taken a 50% stake in 2001. Today Betty Bossi continues to be one of the dominant authorities on Swiss cuisine, especially for the home cook. The shelves of Swiss houses are lined with her cookbooks and Coop, uses her name on everything from orange juice to ravioli.

The "Betty Bossi" newspaper today has a circulation of around 900,000 copies. I have been a loyal reader since 1996!!!

Thursday, October 10, 2019

Don't go to Ticino

DON’T GO TO TICINO... you might get addicted to the Ticino Dolce Vita!

Check out this stunning video with fantastic pictures created by Tolt in collaboration with Ticino Turismo. Who is Tolt you are wondering?

Benjamin Martinie, aka Tolt, is a Film Director and Photographer specializing in travel-related content. Thanks to his original editing style and his eye for detail, Tolt creates unique immersive stories that will just make you want to pack and go... that is if you are not already living there. ;)

Here's a little bonus feature: How to improve creativity

Tuesday, October 8, 2019

Happiness Calendar

Have you ever come across a Happiness Calendar? It was a first for me.

Should you wish to inject a bit of happiness into your everyday life with videos, articles, practices, or podcasts here is the way to do it. This month is all about forgiveness and looking for silver linings according to the Greater Good Science Center (GGSC) at the University of California Berkeley. 

Since 2001, the GGSC has been at the fore of a new scientific movement to explore the roots of happy and compassionate individuals, strong social bonds, and altruistic behavior - the science of a meaningful life.

Give it a try...

Sunday, October 6, 2019

Chestnut Tiramisù recipe

Right in time for the chestnut season, here's a recipe with a twist on the classic tiramisù dish: Chestnut cream is combined with mascarpone to give this tiramisù a light and fluffy mousse served over marsala and coffee infused biscuits.

sponge finger biscuits: 600 gr
good espresso coffee: 100 ml - 200ml
caster sugar: 50 gr
Marsala wine: 30 ml (optional)
sweetened "crème de marrons": 150 gr
mascarpone: 400 gr
eggs: 4
unsweetened cocoa powder : 20 gr

1.) Whisk the egg yolks with the sugar until the mixture turns pale and fluffy
2.) Add the Marsala wine if wanted
3.) Add the chestnut cream and mascarpone; mix well
4.) In a separate bowl, whisk the egg whites until stiff and then gently fold into the mascarpone/chestnut mixture
5.) To assemble the dessert dip each biscuit in the coffee and sign up in the mould
6.) Top the first layer of biscuits with half of the mascarpone/chestnut mix
7.) Repeat the layer of biscuit and then finish with a layer of mascarpone/chestnut mixture
8.) Sprinkle cocoa powder to decorate
9.) Refrigerate for at least half an hour before serving

Saturday, October 5, 2019

Mercatino di Monte Bré

A small discovery on top of Monte Bré that can be combined with a fun funicular ride and a beautiful nature walk. The perfect Sunday family outing if the weather allows.

Il mercatino di Monte Bré is held from April to October every Saturday on the summit of Monte Brè and every Sunday at the village church of Brè between 11:00 and 17:00 with many adorable local products such as homemade jams, Ciambelett dal Brè, household items, homemade liqueurs, honey and hive delicacies and local olive oil.

Monte Brè is a strategic starting point from which you can set off on magnificent routes through the heart of nature leading away from the summit. Setting off from the Monte Brè Cable Car summit station, you join the path towards Aldesago to reach the panoramic view point above the village. Rejoin the path towards Brè village. The last stretch of the path will take you back to the Monte Brè Cable Car summit station allowing you to return to the city in comfort.

The suggested routes offer a variety of views and points of interest, types of layout, difficulties and lengths, and are therefore suitable for any level of fitness and a wide variety of tastes.

For more info, click here:

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