Katia Raina

The Magic Mirror

I’m Back!!

My dear readers and followers old and new,

I can’t believe this — it’s been almost a month since I last posted! But this is what happens when you are having an amazing summer filled with many trips 🙂 Plus, when I return from those wonderful vacations full of new strength and energy, I try to channel it into writing more than blogging!

Anyway, I promised a little report with pictures and wisdom learned on vacation, and here it goes:

First, here is where I stayed, as I do every year:

This house in a small Alpine village in Italy belongs to my husband’s father, who, upon his death, divided it up between his three brothers (my husband is the youngest of the three). On the right is the mountain where it sits:  

Below are the three brothers in question:

And here are their three wives (I am in the brightest blue T-shirt):

This is where we sometimes cooked: (left)

This is where we walked (center):

This is where we slept:

And here is where we chopped wood — on the right — (okay so I didn’t, personally):

Finally, here is where we ate my mother-in-law’s polenta (below):

The small Alpine village is my favorite place on Earth. The water in the Alps is fresher and cooler than anywhere I know.

(And yes, I can swim in it, too, even though it is so freezing when you enter it, it burns your skin. And yes, my seven-year-old daughter entered the mountain river freely this year — no coaxing necessary!)

The strawberries that hide under the leaves are the sweetest.

And though I didn’t climb the highest peak this year, the mountains always find a way to challenge and inspire me.


When I was here last summer, I did much soul-searching, reaching for patience and peace. This year — and this may sound too cocky — I felt like all was already in place, no major new lessons required. Living is just like walking up the mountain, the winding journey is beautiful and scenic, but it never goes in a straight line, and you never quite know behind which bend hides the next destination. Catching happiness is as difficult as asking a butterfly to sit still on a flower for a photo.

Still, I say it’s worth a shot.



August 14, 2011 - Posted by | Personal Mirror


  1. Wow! that is incredible. I can feel your peace, Katia! And that wood cookstove is very impressive! Sometimes leaving all our gadgets and conveniences behind can be hard and yet soooo rewarding.

    I can tell you had some great family time. Such memories for your kids! Welcome home! Missed you.

    Comment by Joyce Hostetter | August 14, 2011 | Reply

  2. Joyce,

    Somehow I knew you’d like the cookstove! 🙂
    I love leaving the gadgets and stuff behind — incredibly, the work feels like a treat every time. (Though I do love coming back to all my conveniences also) 🙂
    Yes, we did have unforgettable family time.

    Hope you’re well and writing away!

    Comment by Katia Raina | August 14, 2011 | Reply

  3. Welcome back.

    Great pictures. I can imagine what a wonderful, peaceful time you had there. And I’d love to go to Italy someday.

    Have a great week.

    Comment by Medeia Sharif | August 15, 2011 | Reply

    • When you do go, Medeia, you might see a very different Italy! But yes, I hope you get to go. Maybe promoting one of your many future books? 😉

      Comment by Katia Raina | August 15, 2011 | Reply

  4. Fantastic pictures Katia, what an incredible place to recharge your tired batteries 🙂

    Comment by Sarah Pearson | August 16, 2011 | Reply

    • Thanks Sarah, and yes, the air and the water and the mountains — and family — did recharge me.

      Comment by Katia Raina | August 16, 2011 | Reply

  5. Wow, Katia! Great photos. And what a beautiful place to unwind and catch up with family. Glad you had a soul-inspiring vacation, but also glad you’re back!

    Comment by Joanne Fritz | August 17, 2011 | Reply

    • Thanks, Joanne. I wish I could take you all there, but sharing these photos is the next best thing I guess 🙂

      Comment by Katia Raina | August 17, 2011 | Reply

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