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Tuesday, September 6, 2011  |  Travel

Rome: Part 1

've had an espresso, as I usually do each night here in Italy after an incredible meal, and I'm currently parked in Rome. Contrary to what alot of travellers have told me, this city is truly beautiful, full of life, and there is so much to see and experience. It is a walking city though (despite having an open day bus pass that let us get on and off whenever we wanted), so each day we were here consisted of a good 5-6 hours of walking. Let me tell you that even with all the beautiful sites, flat comfy shoes, and free flowing cold water from the city's numerous public fountains, my feet were SCREAMING at me at the end of each day, and hurt for a good 2-3 more days after. Thankfully, we stayed at this delightful B&B called Armory Suites (and about 5 minutes walk from the Vatican) which presented itself as an apartment furnished like a swanky boutique hotel - it is run by a local who is passionate about the city AND making sure you have a good time which made coming 'home' each day from the crazy walking and sweltering 30 degree heat in Rome, perfect :)  
Anyhow, It's late, and I should be sleeping so I won't flood this post which works out well anyway since our pit stop here in Rome seems to have gathered a few too many photos anyway, so part 2 to this blog post will be after this one :) Til the next blog post about the city! :D 
Typical buildings in Rome. Even they look so pretty.
The very impressive Vittorio Emanuele II monument.
The husband was excited to head to the most famous set of ruins in town.. The Colosseum.
I don't know about you, but I honestly think the Trevi Fountain is more beautiful at night. And yes, we did do the tourist thing and throw the coins in the fountain water :P
The other main reason I like the fountain better at night is because all the people are gone :P Typical day time Trevi Fountain crowd. Nuts :P
After trying a few gelato places, I didn't want to waste more tummy space so I did some reading and then scouted this place - Ciampini (which is a very short walk from the Pantheon) really is as good as all the reviews say it is. The gelato is creamyyyyyy, fresh, and very real in flavour. We had a melon, mango, and chocolate combo and all I thought was !!!!!!! and I wish I wasn't sharing! :P We went back there a 2nd time after dinner, but the shop was closing. Ju did his thing and managed to persuade the waiters to let us in for a last order :P It was so good, we had gobbled up half the gelato before I realized I forgot to take a photo! haha..
I don't know why but I was a little obsessed with silhouettes in this city... the skyline has so many interesting things! :D
In my own humble opinion, Rome is even more pretty at night.
The city really is definitely a setting for romance of all sorts.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011  |  Travel


So the internet isn't capable enough for me to do actual real work (sorry!), so the next best thing? Blog.  
It's official. We saw the entire city of Venice in a day. And strangely enough, the day was fairly relaxing and slow paced.  
As we were walking through the city's endless laneways and alleys, and sauntering across the countless bridges, it dawned to me that while Venice is considered one of the world's most romantic cities, it is in essence a ghost town. 
Well, because no one actually lives there. There are MILLIONS of tourists that visit, for sure...but long term residents and inhabitants are far and few between. And then dotting the spaces in between buildings are rows after rows of branded boutiques, souvenir carts, and waterside restaurants all catering to the swelling number of visitors every day.  
So my verdict of this city? Its is BEAUTIFUL, but when it comes down to character, I personally felt it was a little empty.  
That said, I am still so glad I got to visit and spend a day and a half here. We ate some awesome seafood here, sat on a Gondola, saw the infamous Palazzo that "The Tourist" was filmed in, and managed to make our way around the entire city on foot without getting lost (thanks to my husband's amazing GPS senses)! 
Here are a few sights that caught my eyes :D 
Our favourite eatery from our trip... they make an incredible spicy scampi pasta, and killer tiramisu (think light and very creamy!) :)
I was delighted to find a couple of Venetian ladies amidst the billions of tourists running around! :D
Beautiful side 'streets' :)
Us :)
Some of the more interesting things were up above...
The Grand Canal...
Our Gondola 'driver' :)
Some of the shop windows were really exquisite!
More of the Grand Canal...
Typical activity around St Mark's Square.
Beautiful looking cafe at St Mark's Square. But beware, prices are insane and they charge for listening to the open air music!! On another note, there are LOADS of tourists sitting around everywhere in the square.
St Mark's Square.
Ok, I can't take credit for the below photo. I may have taken it, but it was the husband's idea :)
Don't believe there were millions of tourists? :P
Melon flavored gelato.... YUMMMMMMMM.
Masks are the thing in Venice besides the gondolas... Even I ended up buying one!
The Grand Canal at sunset :)
A rare sign of residential life after hours.
Adios Venice! We are moving to Tuscany tomorrow :) 

Monday, August 29, 2011  |  Travel, Personal

Happy Snap

hotos of us are rather rare... nice ones anyway. Usually the photos of us that exist and float around are the kind where one of us sticks our arm in the high in the air with the camera aiming down at the two of us, in the hopes that both of us fit in the frame with some portion of the background behind us :P Needless to say that while I love these photos as they have some really beautiful memories of us attached to them, it's always nice to have 'proper' pictures of ourselves.  
So, in celebration of finally picking up a travel tripod, here is the hubby and I testing it out in Compiegne, more to add to the happy snap pile! :) And yes, it was cold that day. 

ps: We are currently parked in Venice and weather is ALOT hotter than France was. The city is CRAWLING with tourists in every single corner... time is very short so I don't really have time to blog yet, but I hope to share photos soon! :)

Thursday, August 25, 2011  |  Travel

Acorns, Long lunches, and the French :)

e landed amidst a slight chill and a heavy cloak of grey clouds in Paris at about 7 in the morning after a long 13 hour flight. What followed was a quick pit stop to a cafe to fuel up on croissants, baguettes + butter, and coffee, before hopping on a few trains to head out to a quaint little country village for Saturday's wedding :)  
While I won't go into too much detail, what I will say is that the weather is beautiful, the french country landscaping coupled with their farms is just gorgeous, and the family we are photographing at this weekend's wedding are so amazingly nice. They invited us to join them for a relaxing long lunch under their oak tree, in the backyard where the wedding will be taking place, and we had the wonderful pleasure of enjoying their company with the delicious food that was made with love for all of us.  
The french love long lunches. We just finished a delicious menu of cous cous, roasted chicken, and creme brulee ice cream with melon + nectarines...sitting under an oak tree with acorns :)
And seriously... I can't contain my excitement, because after the bride showed me around the garden, the house, and then all the gorgeous details she has prepared for Saturday, I just burst into little dances of joy in my head! :D Everything is so quintessentially french in the most delightful of ways. I'm just praying weather will be perfect and that will be the cream on top of the cake :) Here is a sneak peek to saturday's nuptials! :D
I must run now... we're heading out to shoot an engagement session in the fields! :D 

Monday, November 29, 2010  |  Travel

Travel Destination: Salzburg, Austria

've lost my voice. Really. I was trying to ask my husband yesterday to pass me a cup of water, but all that came out was a squeak. And that's when I started to cry. 
I'm not normally like that, honestly. I don't burst into tears over something as small as that. But for some reason, in between all the burning pain each time I swallowed, and sounding like a chipmunk on helium, I felt miserable. And not myself at all. 
And so, in an attempt to recover at lightning fast speed before my last few weddings for the year, I am prescribing myself a mandatory 48 hour lifestyle that consists of massive amounts of sleep, warm honey water, and catching up on as many of my favourite things. The first being, blogging :) - I know it is going to be a terrifyingly busy month ahead, but it is just 3 weeks away from the year closing and I am hoping to retain the blogging momentum as much as I can while I look forward to weeks of rest, time at home, and celebrating Christmas and New year with the loved ones. 
So, here is me, doing what I love. Blogging. Enjoy my personal snaps from Salzburg, Austria. The land of The Sound Of Music - a musical I loved watching, while growing up! It's definitely a place I will love to return to, in the Summer, when the hills are donned with glorious sunshine, and decked with flowers amongst the meadows. 
These were just some things that made my eyes and heart happy along the adventure through Salzburg that day :) Note: the first 10 photos or so were taken while I was on a train from my window, so apologies if some shots are exactly perfect.  
The mountains really are stunning. Even in the winter. 
We saw the first snow arrive :) 
And we were lucky enough to see the sun and sky come out for about 5 minutes before it disappeared again :P 
When we finally arrived in the city. 
These were apparently the grounds where the Sound of Music was filmed. Called, Schloss Mirabell, these are the 2nd most popular grounds to get married on - IN THE WORLD. We have no idea what is the #1 place. If anyone knows, please tell me! :) 
We then wandered into the shops in the old part of Salzburg. It was really really pretty! 
Including the Christmas Markets that had started already :) 
Oh and this cafe - Cafe, Furst - has some of the most DELICIOUS chocolates. Seriously, they cost 1 Euro - worth it! :D 
And here is the famous Salzburg chocolate cake, from Hotel Sacher - the only cake that is a STATE secret! 
This shop by Henri J. Sillam, peaked my interest because it is only open for 2 months in the entire year. Its apparently been around for ages. No guess as to how much each piece inside costs. Crazy!! 
We then climbed the tower in Salzburg to see the views from above. 
The views were stunning. 
My husband and I, taking turns with the big camera. 
Just some interesting things on the way back :) 
Wilder Mann - best pork Schnitzel in town. It was filled with red wine, mushrooms, ham, cheese....mmmmm :) 
Love all the Christmas lights! :D 
And this last shot is not a creative one. Just wanted a happy snap with the hubby and I :) 

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