ABOVE Laura Francini with daughters Scarlett, 15, Margot, 17, and Liza, 8, and Andrea Francini on the front porch of their home in Pittsboro’s Bingham Ridge. BELOW The back patio is a favorite spot for Laura to take work Zoom calls as well as FaceTime sessions with faraway family members.
to raise their three daughters, Margot, 17, Scarlett, 15, and Liza, 8, close to family in her home state. The Francinis returned to North Carolina, Laura’s home state, last year seeking a greater sense of community and culture. “Not only do we cherish its natural beauty every day, I think it’s wonderful being nearby my alma mater, UNC,” Laura says. “However, we are experiencing North Carolina more virtually now, like with the Blue Ridge to the Beach virtual trail.” Bingham Ridge provides residents with access to hilly trails that traverse boulder terrain. At home, the Francinis pay homage to Andrea’s home country by recreating a beachy Italian ambiance complete with a saltwater pool, pebble landscape and native plants such as scarlet hibiscus. “When the pandemic was not yet full-scale in the U.S. but had already ravaged much of Europe, including Italy, we knew it would 82
The Food and Drink Issue