Thursday, December 27, 2007

Italy





Well, Italy has been pretty interesting so far. We got Rome yesterday and found out that my bags had not quite made it on the plane from Paris. Beth has both of her bags but I don't have mine. As I sit here typing over 24 hours after arriving, I still don't have my bags. Fun stuff. Other than that, things have been great. We met my family at the airport in Rome and hopped a train to Florence. We had an amazing meal last night at one of the oldest restaurants in Florence and today has been nothing less than fantastic as we've gotten to see two things that we've only seen in pictures and postcards our entire lives. Here are a few of our pictures from today. Tomorrow we are going on tour of Chianti, the area of Italy where the wine of the same name comes from.

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Why Travel?

Tony and I have finally begun packing and getting ready for our trip coming up in 2 days. We spent most of today figuring out what to pack, getting magazine, cash, all that good stuff that you need when you travel. It has been over a year since Tony & I went on a long vacation. We did go to Paris for a short 5 days back in May, but that has been it for this year. If you know Tony, you know he loves to take at least 2 long vacations a year and loves to go to places he's never been before. In that respect, this year has not been that for him. I did not discover international travel until meeting Tony and it has opened my eyes to so many things that I never would have experienced. For example, the only two places I ever wanted to travel to in my lifetime were Paris and Venice. We went to both of those places on our first vacation together, and now I have been to Paris twice. I am definitely spoiled!

A lot of people ask how we can afford to go on all these vacations, and the only reason I think we can afford to travel as much as we do is because Tony is always looking for the best flights, hotels, places to eat, etc. We travel smart and economically. We travel to see new places and experience new things, not to stay in the best hotels or eat at fancy restaurants. We also choose to afford to travel. We make it a priority because it is such a treat for us.

My first amazing moment traveling was when Tony and I went to Paris in April of 2006. This was our first vacation together and we had never spent more than a day together! Tony had been to Paris probably 5 times already so he had already seen the Eiffel Tower and a lot of the major sights. We got to Paris and of course we're like alright, where do we start! Tony says, "Let's go get on the train and figure it out." I think he already knew where we were going, but we get off at what I think is a random train stop because we get out on the street and it's just buildings and people everywhere. Tony grabs my hand and says let's go. We walk around the corner and there in the open, right in front of us is the Eiffel Tower. I think the look on my face was priceless. I could not stop smiling and thinking wow this is THE Eiffel Tower that you see on TV, books, movies, magazines, and other people's pictures and there it is right in front of me. That was my first experience traveling and I was hooked. It's one of those moments I don't think I will ever forget. The fact that Tony was there to share that with me makes it even more special. After that trip, I was hooked...on traveling and my travel buddy!

Friday, December 21, 2007

Not Fair

Well, it's 6:20 in the morning and I'm up getting ready for school and Tony's sleeping away. Just when you think a teacher has the best schedule, you have to think again...this time of year anyways. Tony has the luxury of working from home today because it's a half day for his office and since he has to drive almost an hour to work, he just decided it wasn't worth it today. Then he get's a week and a half off from work because his office basically closes for the week of Christmas and doesn't open up until after New Years. This has worked out great this year though with our vacation coming up in a few days.

I'm off to school today for a half day and classes and a work day for the other half. I'm hoping that we'll get to leave a little bit early, but we'll see.

Monday, December 17, 2007

Christmas Break Is Almost Here

We are on the home stretch now! Only 4 more days until we are done with work for 2 weeks! It's almost like I can't even believe it. I am so excited for Christmas and to leave for Italy and now it's only a week way. This week of school is kind of a weird week because we need to actually do work, but the kids don't want to learn anything new. So we have resorted to doing more of the same old stuff. Having to teach/do the same thing in 4 classes can get boring after awhile because you feel like you are repeating yourself and get tired of saying the same things and answering the same questions again and again. Today I basically read a book and told kids to be quite because they were taking a semester end standardized test (called a CBA). We're going to be finishing it tomorrow too. I also have to get my stuff ready for the sub I'm going to have the first 2 days we are back at school because I'll still be on vacation. We had the vacation planned before I knew I would be teaching, so luckly they gave me the 2 days right after break off. Apparently that doesn't happen very often and it is very much frowned upon to take days off in conjunction with a long break (aka Thanksgiving, Christmas, or Spring Break). Thankfully it has worked out for me this year.

An update on Tony's last post, we had a great weekend. It was very busy, but we got some bridesmaid dresses ordered and we went to Tori's wedding, which was a lot of fun. We both decided that we are ultra critical of weddings now that we are planning one, but it was a good time and we got to see a lot of people that we hadn't seen in awhile.

The weather has been nice and cool which made our run on Sunday very nice. We ran 13.1 - a half marathon! Now I have no excuse and no reason to think that I can't do it again.

Things we are looking forward to this week/weekend: get together with Sarah & Mike and Alyssa & Dave on Wednesday, half day of work on Friday, Tony's boss' Christmas party on Friday, and packing for the big trip!

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Big Weekend Ahead

Beth and I seem to have a lot of plans for this weekend. Okay well not necessarily a lot of plans, but plans. And actually now that I think about it, I really have no plans. Beth's the one with stuff to do. As we get closer to our trip to Italy, I'm pretty sure that's all Beth and I can think about. And at the end of this week, we will only have one more week of work before we leave. But back to this weekend.

On Friday we actually don't have anything to do. Man we are SO not cool. Our night will probably consist of eating dinner, watching tv, and thinking that we might actually make it past 11 o'clock on a Friday night for once. Don't hold your breath. I won't hold mine. I've come to realize that by the end of the week, after five straights days of waking up at 5:51 a.m.(that's right, exactly 5:51 a.m.), I'm pretty darn tired. All I want to do is get some sleep. It's funny b/c I'm sitting here thinking right now that this will be the week I stay up past ten on a Friday night. All the while knowing in my head that it's not going to happen. Oh well. I digress.

This weekend Beth is going bridesmaid dress shopping with her two sisters, two of her bridesmaids, and her Mom. Unfortunately my two sisters won't be able to go, nor will Beth's other bridesmaid who lives in Boston. While Beth is having a "girls" day on Saturday, my life will probably consist of running, sitting, laying, and possibly napping. All things that happen once college football season ends. Pitiful. Saturday night we are going to a wedding and it should be pretty fun. I've actually never been to a December wedding before, not that it's necessarily that much different than a September or June or even March wedding. But maybe it is. I'll let you know.

Sunday is the day we have planned to run 13.1 miles, our own half-marathon. It's kind of weird to think that we've been "training" now for almost a month and a half. Things have gone well so far, other than the fact that we both wanted to collapse about nine miles into our run last weekend. This probably had to do with the fact that it was 80 degrees outside. I love December days in the eighties. Or not. This weekend it should be in the fifties and hopefully a little bit easier on us as we run our own half-marathon. I'll keep you posted.

Saturday, December 8, 2007

Christmas Shopping...Check!

YEAH! Tony and I are completely done with our Christmas shopping! I am not a procrastinator to say the least, so I made Tony go shopping with me the last two weekends and as a result, we have already gotten all the presents. We are doing presents from Tony and me this year for my family and his so that made things easier. Plus since we are going to Italy, we didn't really feel the need to do big presents for each other...not to mention we are saving for our house too. Christmas shopping is something I just really get into. Not that I spend a lot of money (because I can't), but I just enjoy picking things out for my favorite people!

I am hoping that the next two weeks fly by because I cannot wait for Christmas time and for our trip. Tony and I talk about how excited we are almost every day. We are getting the best of both worlds this year because we got to spend Christmas Eve & Day with my parents and sisters and then get to hop on a plane and see Tony's entire family. The trip to Rome all started last Christmas with Tony's idea to want to finally spend a Christmas with his family again next year. I am so happy that it has all come together to well and that everyone will be able to make it. It is going to be such a fun, memorable trip! We feel so lucky that we are able to do things like this for Christmas.

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Update

A quick update on my and Beth's half-marathon training. Everything seems to be going well so far. We are up to 11 miles now and ran that this past Saturday. We are now less than two weeks away from having to run the entire 13.1 miles and it'll be interesting to see how we feel after that. We'll have about a month between the end of our training and the half-marathon and hopefully we'll be able to get in some long runs in between. The problem is we'll be in Italy for 10 days of that and although we have every intention of running while in Italy, I'm not holding my breath. It's hard to make yourself get up and go running when you have jet lag and your spending your days walking everywhere! We'll see.

Sunday, December 2, 2007

Invitations Galore

We finally found Tony's limit when it comes to wedding planning. Yesterday after I had been talking about going to look at wedding invitations for weeks, Tony finally broke down and said ok I'll go with you. I honestly didn't know what to expect either, but after looking at 3 huge (I mean huge) books full of invitatation, he had finally had enough. We probably could have spent the entire afternoon at the invitation store looking at all these books that they have. Who knew there were going to be so many choices in every price range and design you could possibly imagine. The saleslady was also very intense about invitations so of course that also go on Tony's nerves. Needless to say he does not have any plans on going back. He kept saying, "You need to bring your mom next time." It was very overwhelming though, but funny to see Tony getting annoyed. :) He was a good sport though, and I'm very happy that he came with me because I would not have wanted to start looking on my own. The next time I go back (with my mom), I will have a better idea of what we are looking for and where to start.

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