Scenes from Saturday + Island Time

One of the things I remember most about our trip to Sicily is the pace of life. Things are open. Things are closed. Schedules seem to have little importance. Maybe it’s the history leeching into their blood, or maybe it’s just the all the red wine, but life feels slower, almost contemplative over there. 

A little bit of that Sicilian lifestyle survives today in Boston’s North End. It’s being chipped away by time and real estate prices (there’s currently a big fight about a Starbucks moving in), but it still exists in pockets. We went into the city on Saturday and tried to time a lot of our activities around lunch and getting pizza and arancinis from Galleria Umberto. Easier said than done.

Our favorite, unassuming pizza, James Beard award-winning hole in the wall is open around 10:45 – 2:30 (Tues – Sat and they take July off). And that closing time is only a suggestion given that they sell out of most items usually well before that time.

Not a bad way to make a living.


We start, of course, on the couch with Liv & Maddie. Even more exasperating than the actual show is that the girls have figured out there is a soundtrack that Alexa is more than willing to play at all hours.


We somehow managed to oversleep (when was the last time that happened?!) and missed the running group which left a couple solo runs before we officially started the day.

While Michelle ran, I prepped some dough for Sunday’s fall pizza spectacular. If you’re in the neighborhood around 4, stop by, I’m sure there will be plenty.


Next, I drew the short straw and had to deal with Ally and her breakfast shenanigans. She’s increasingly unpredictable and volatile in the morning about food. Rejecting everything on the menu. However! I did find one last sachet of rice cereal in my race bag. Crises averted. Queue the crazy face.


Michelle had the task of walking Cecilia and Dash. The day always goes better when they both get outside early. 


No soccer this weekend, so after everyone had run and been fed, we went into the city to hit up the Museum of Science. One perk of working for a large conglomerate is free museum entry for two, combined with library passes and we have a cheap date. 

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Of all the exhibits, what did they like (second) best? The swings, of course. Will they ever outgrow swings? Will Ally ever learn how to pump by herself on the swings?


What did they like best? The space toilet, of course. Nothing can beat the fascination of going the bathroom in outer space. Really brings home the exhibits key points.


Due to our unplanned bout of oversleeping, we were off schedule. This led to some tense times in line when we finally made it to Galleria Umberto at 12:45. Would the arancinis be sold out? Would this all be a trip in vain? Would Cecilia keep it together?

This is a very common view at Galleria Umberto.


Thankfully, after a nail-biting wait, we had the goods. The softball sized arancinis and cheesy Sicilian slices made the girls (Mom and Dad, too) happy and very full. The line is always worth the wait.


Of course we hit up Bricco after lunch too for a couple cookies (girls are never too full to skip cookies) and a loaf of bread again. We hit the Greenway so the girls could eat dessert before heading back.


Every time we’ve visited this park near the North End, Cecilia has been desperate to sit on one of the big swinging benches. She’s never got one….until today! I think it made her week.


Full of arancinis and buttery caramel cookies and trying to keep up with Dad’s long legs in the city, my little pumpkin was asleep before we exited the parking garage.


When we got home, Dash got another walk. Don’t let his distinguished look fool you. He still has plenty of puppy spunk. He jumped up to near shoulder height and snatched a breakfast cookie from Cecilia this morning. But he’s too handsome to stay in the dog house for long.


Shortly after the dog walk, all three girls suspiciously disappeared without a trace. Just as I feared, the disappearance involved Marshalls.


The rest of the day mostly involved the couch, wine, Hotel Transylvania, and cooking shows.


If you are ever visiting, we learned that Cecilia has the more generous pour of our two kids.


Now if I can teach her how to make a passable pizza, I will have achieved the dream. For a Saturday, at least.



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