My Summer Vacation, by Ruth Culham

ImageWelcome to Villa Ardene, outside Multepulciano in Tuscany, Italy.  Yes, I was here and it was heavenly.  Having let too many years go by without a vacation, this summer I blew the budget and went to Tuscany for two weeks and two days.  I flew to Rome with my friends Janet and Larry from Montana and we explored the Eternal City together first.  Then it was off to Tuscany for an extended stay at the Villa with other friends who flew in from all over the states–what fun!  We ate, drank, swam, hiked, and shopped.  Each day we had a Tuscany adventure to another city or town–each one more wonderful than the last. The Villa was the perfect place for an escape and the company was simply the best.  

If you’ve ever traveled this way–staying at a villa instead of a hotel–you know what I’m talking about.  The experience is rich and local, allowing you to unpack and settle while creating an endless list of possibilities of how to fill your days.  My day began with a swim in the pool


  and it ended there, too.  In between was non stop sightseeing and savoring of the local cuisine.  Cell phones off, computers stashed, Scholastic conversations tabled–it was simply the best two weeks of my life with friends I adore.  Even Christian Grey made a splash at the Villa as all three books of 50 Shades of Grey were passed around like candy.  Oh my!  I’m sure he’d be happy to know he was such a hit in Tuscany.  

May your summer have created magical memories of your own this year and may this message find you as rested and tan as I feel right now.   


About Ruth Culham

RUTH CULHAM has written more than 40 books and best-selling resources illuminating both writing and the reading-writing connection for countless educators around the globe. Her groundbreaking work with the writing traits and writing from reading is the culmination of 40 years of research, practice, and passion. Ruth’s most recent books, The Writing Thief: Using Mentor Texts to Teach the Craft of Writing and Dream Wakers: Mentor Texts That Celebrate Latino Culture, are available from Stenhouse Publishers. She also conducts professional development for schools and districts and writes a regular column for The Reading Teacher.
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