Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Amo Firenze! (I love Florence!)

Ciao bella gente! (Hi beautiful people)

Anywho, guess what time it is? Time for my fav city!!! Sorry to the other 7 but I think it is because we had the most time here which means lots of shopping and eating and enjoying Firenze.

On the bus ride from Venice to Florence we stopped at an Autogrill for some snackage (aka a pre-lunch)  I wasn't that hungry but I had a bowl of fruit and a nice salad.  It was so very fresh and delicious -I was starting to miss my fruit :( I know, I am the only 17 year old who misses  fruit and veggies in her life...

Some people bought a tiramisu and said it was very good so of course Kristin and I wanted to try it--I gotta learn how to make this! Any advice or recipes? Send please to or leave in comments section! Thanks a bunches!

Then we were off to continue our journey to Florence...
We had to beg our bus driver Roberto to take us to the top to see Florence from above--oh boy was it worth every moment.  Since we didn't pay the high priced parking permit to get up there, we only had time to take a few photos.
The Duomo is actually the most amazing sight.  It is structures like these that make me want to go into architecture...
 Kristin, Lindsay, me, Jessie, Noah, Brandon (aka Brando), Matt, Chris, Amanda and Mary.
Almost all of the kids who went from my high school--The d12 minus Rosa and Emily

Then we got the whole group shot including our crazy tour guide Patrizia and our teacher Ms. Batacchi! 

But our adventure was short lived as it was time to go on our walking tour of Florence...
The Bell tower with the Duomo peeking in the picture on the right

I think I remember the tour guide saying that this was the largest church for quite some time.  My Whisper was acting up so I couldn't hear her all that well.

While we were waiting for some people to take cash out this super rad woman ran up to us and handed out a few samples of the waffles she was selling.  They were coated in this delicious sugary glaze and cooked to perfection.  It would taste great with some gelato! 

Also while we were waiting Noah decided to have a fashion shoot with the pole...

However, that was also short lived because it was time to continue our journey as you can see Ms. Batacchi's arm pushing him so we can enter the church

We spent a while in there but unfortunately the dim lighting prevented me from getting a lot of good pictures, here are just a few:
A magnificently painted dome--just a preview to the Sistine Chapel according to our lovely tour guide

The inside of the church was quite large...(with lots of people)

After, we continued our journey and passed these chalk artists
Can you say "WOW" I mean seriously! They spend their entire day drawing these masterpieces on the street for them to be erased come nightfall when the street cleaners wash the streets.  I would never be able to watch all that hard work simply disappear.

Then we made it to our next stop--Ponte Vecchio
Ponte means Bridge and Vecchio means old--Old Bridge?
Noah, Lindsay Me and Jessie standing ON the Ponte Vecchio with a different bridge in the background
Me rocking the awkward single shot on the ledge
Then there's me and Kristin :)

After that photo-op we made our way back to Palazzo Senoria (where we started) to look at all the statues. 
That is the Davide Due (David 2) --The original David used to stand here until some crazy man decided to do some stupid things and then it was moved into the Academia.

There are lots of statues here:
Like this one
and Hercules
and these

Here we met back up with our tour guide who took us to the leather demonstration.  Florence is famous for their leather and here we learned how to tell if leather is real or fake.  There is a law that states only genuine leather can have the genuine leather stamp.  HOWEVER, the street vendors like to deceive you by having the genuine leather stamp on the actual swatch of real leather while the rest is fake.  Oh no!

We learned to avoid buying fake leather by pulling the outer layer away from the lining and rubbing the outer layer together--if it is hard to rub then it is real because the suede cannot be easily rubbed.  Boy that was a mouthful...

But of course I had to buy some Italian leather in the style of this super cute bag:
That would be me on the left with Sky and Lindsay (it was my birthday so that explains the crown btw!) Airport to la it

Then we had some free time! YAY best part--we scoped out the shopping to see where we wanted to go tomorrow -Via Roma had some great shops and we definitely wanted to stop into Zara (where I happen to buy a super cute pair of jeans)

But first we had to get some gelato of course:
Mine (left) is Biscotti and Caramel! Best Gelato flavor combination so far! Kristin got strawberry and another berry I forgot.  But when she tried mine she went and got a small version of that because it was thaaat delicious!

We also all got a round of Caffe Lattes :) How pretty are those layers!!! (currently crafting my own with my Aerolattee and instant espresso)

After a lot of browsing and perusing the streets of Florence it was time to head back to the meeting point.  Uh where was that again? We spent a good 15 minutes walking sprinting the streets to find our group.  After asking about 14 people where the Palazzo Senoria was we finally ran into our group walking.  Of course our teacher and her mother were waiting for us by the point but boy were we outta breath when we saw them.

While we were lost we spotted more views of the Duomo and church--had to stop to take a few pictures obviously!

It was dinner time and tonight there was actuallllll foood on the menu! No yucky hotel dinners!
First off was some pasta alla bolagnaise

And then some chicken and veggies--the chicken was not my thing so I just ate the veggies

Oh and there was bread! Always a fan..

And for dessert: Tiramisu! The second of many!

Then we arrived at our hotel in Florence and I went to open the hotel room door and BAM we got a suite! How crazy! No joke this room was huge--SO  HAPPY! We had 2 bathrooms, one with a jacuzzi, a huge balcony, tons of space and much much more! 
Jessie (left) and Kristin (right of me) joined Lindsay and I for some jaccuzi-ing! We're silly :)

But off to bed because Free Day in Florence tomorrow! Woot Woot!!

Breakfast time: Coffee.  Cereal.  Croissant.  Delicious.

 I also snapped a photo of the map Patrizia drew for us--just in case we get lost again!
PLAN: Acedemia to see the David in morning then free time with a 1pm check-in.
WHAT HAPPENED: free time because line for David was extra long, David at 1 then free time again (Lunch time for us!)

It was about 2 hours since bfast and my tummy was grumbling! Gelato time! Plus it was untouched that early and looked like delicious mounds of heaven! I simply couldn't resist

Molto delicioso! (I like gelato. A LOT. Just in case you missed the memo.)

We bopped about Florence peepin in some stores and browsing the open market.  Right by the open market there is this hog? pork is the word that keeps coming to my mind but I know there is a real name for it...wahh why can't I think of it!

Anyways, I bought my new favorite pair of jeans.  I was a little skeptical at first because I thought they were tight but I liked them even when I arrived in America--good sign! (I'll keep ya in suspense until my Roma post where you will see them in action!)

Since at the earlier stop Jessie and Lindsay didn't get gelato we haaaaaad  to stop again.  You'd be proud of me though, I didn't get! Say what!? Yup I skipped a gelato run because we were going to get lunch soon.  Willpower man!

Next stop was the Acedemia to see David! While in line Kristin and I created a game--when the pigeons get close to yaa just kick out your leg (don't hit the bird!) and watch it fly away.  It kept us occupied for a good 7 minutes.
Then I played bouncer with Peter-don't I just look so beefy! I should really lay off those 'roids.

illegal photo of moi staring at his tushyy
After gandering at his behind for a while, it was lunch time!

My sister's friend Carly is studying abroad ( and she recommended Cairo and Sons for lunch, unfortunately, it seemed a bit difficult to locate so we went to Gaistro--a restaurant recommended to Kristin.  Great decision because it was the most scrumptious meal ever.

The man was extra nice --he gave us glasses of wine for 5 dollars each (which was not offered at the place) and a whole plate of appetizers on the house! 
There was such a wide assortment of goodies: bruscetta, stuffed zucchini, these delicious balls of yum, liver on toast?, roasted red peppers, mushrooms and more!
My plate
Cheers to good times.  New memories.  Italy.  An amazing experience. 
Oh boy do I want to go back!

Here's what some people ordered:

While I enjoyed some delicious minestrone soup!

Dessert time! We went to a famous gelato place, they had soo many flavors the decision was so difficult!
Decisions decisions!

I decided on green apple and kiwi! yummm yumm in my tumm

Then we spent a good portion of the day just bopping around into and out of stores and stuff
posing for pictures was a must! Look at the giant wine bottles...

Kristin and I ate some cookies!

And took some shots...of espresso that is! Silly people

We then lost two of our travelers--they ended up just in the bathroom but we had a photoshoot in the mean time:

My teacher even joined in on the fun when we returned to the meeting spot! She's awesome!

Off to dinner for the night:
Our pasta was a pasta alfredo with green peas

and a beef with peas--but since I am not a beef person I got the vegetarian meal

A regular salad and a tomato mozzarella salad --right up my alley

And Brando (real name is Brandon) with the apple cake for dessert--not appetizing at all

Then we were all depressed thinking that we wouldn't make it to the club but then we were able to!!!
Me in my clubbin' outfit

and me and lindsay all ready to leave to partayyy!

Time to pack up--Lindsay's suitcase exploded!!

Off to ROMA with a pit stop in Assisi!
With love and cupcakes,


  1. This is awesome, but in the picture of the waffle, you can see someone is holding a used piece of gum. GROSS.

  2. Very cool! My fiance and I want to go to Italy someday :) PS This is my first time on your blog, love it so far!



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