Thursday, November 5, 2009
i would like to put a disclaimer on this that if you are easily offended by conservative and right wing opinions, you might as well close this thing down right now. stop reading. seriously. i'm not kidding...CLOSE THE PAGE.
okay, so one thing that has really been on my mind lately is how FREAKING RIDICULOUS the idea of having to be politically correct all the time is. it is just flat-out exhausting me. here are my thoughts: i am prejudice. i discriminate. now before you freak out and let your head fill with the typical racist thoughts, let me explain.
i have a prejudice towards people who feel they are "entitled" to what i have, to what my husband works hard for to provide for our family. we BY NO MEANS are wealthy, we struggle financially, and it makes me EXTREMELY angry when i hear about this idea of "spreading the wealth." let me get something straight, YOU ARE NOT ENTITLED TO WHAT IS MINE.
as a christian, we are called to be generous, to give because what we have is not ours, it is from God. THIS DOES NOT MEAN I AM TO BE A DOORMAT AND TO GIVE PEOPLE WHO DO NOT WANT TO WORK A MEAL TICKET. this also doesn't give people a right to exploit the generosity of christians. i love helping others and serving for the glory of God, but i refuse to let people make a mockery of this.
i understand that people fall on hard times. bad things happen, i get it. as a matter of fact, a good majority of you reading this have no idea the situation bryce and i are in...and it's not any of your business. my point is that you don't see us milking the system, or lining up for a handout. we have sucked it up, given up our luxuries that we were used to and live a modest life.
i really didn't want to ever use this blog as a personal "platform," but i am so tired of our country being a people of enablers. ever heard the saying: "give a man a fish and he'll eat for a day, but teach a man to fish and he'll eat for the rest of his life." ? i feel this is pretty applicable today. think about it, if i'm getting a handout from the government, (taking from your hard-earned dollars, by the way) why the heck would i go get a job instead of sitting on the couch all day???! now, i know i'm over-generalizing. i know that not everyone who receives government assistance is a lazy couch potato, so give me a break. you get my point.
christian or not, here is my challenge: STAND UP FOR WHAT IS RIGHT. PROTECT OUR COUNTRY, OUR LIBERTIES, OUR FREEDOM. i know you may not have the same convictions as i do, but we are all AMERICANS, and we are so blessed to live in such a wonderful country. why do we not take pride in that and protect our country as we do our loved ones?
if you don't feel the same way, that's fine. i am not ingorant to the fact that we all have different viewpoints, BUT, as far as i'm concerned, if you spend more time bitching and moaning about "equality" and blah blah blah in our country, you're probably part of the problem. so if you hate it here that much, pack your bags. get out. that would actually be a blessing for those of us who want to stay here, praying for God's movement across this land and return us to a country of God-fearing, humble people...
quit asking hard working americans to support your lazy butt. you by NO MEANS are ENTITLED to what others work hard for.
the greatest thing about america is that you can have anything you want...and you work as hard as you want to get it.
i know this posting was pretty intense. i am just so exhausted by a country of complainers and this sense of entitlement that is becoming more and more present. it gives me tired head.
Thursday, October 22, 2009
last night, bryce and i were sitting on the couch watching t.v. and enjoying the rain. (well at this point, the rain had slowed from a freaking monsoon to a nice little shower). as we sat there, we heard a noise...bryce thought it was moose licking and i thought it was the rain picking up again. we both happened to look over toward the kitchen to find moose, hiking his leg and peeing on our chair. I KID YOU NOT, he hiked his freaking leg and soaked the chair, like the damn thing was on fire or something and he had to save us all by putting it out. WHAT THE HELL IS WRONG WITH THESE ANIMALS??!!!
i can honestly say in my whole entire life i have never been more scared for moose because the hurricane was a'comin'. it was almost as if moose knew what was in store for him because he came over, sat down in front of bryce while lowering his ears and tucking his tail. moose was prepared for punishment.
we were both so in shock that we could barely move. well, bryce got over that real quick and beat the ever-lovin-crap out of him with a wooden spoon. and with that, moose was banished to the back yard to endure hurricane rains and wind. after about three hours, moose was still sitting at the back door in the pouring down rain whining to come in. i'm hoping the idiot went and got in his dog house, but we're not really sure if he did or not.
needless to say that our poor mop is on its way out...between moose dookie and moose pee, i think it's seen better days. so, the saga of the delinquent dogs continues...but hopefully we're nearing the end. these dogs are slowly inching their way towards becoming outside dogs, which would be a huge bummer since winter isn't far away!
Tuesday, October 20, 2009
For those of you that don't know, I started working at Wells Fargo last week. I get off work around 6:15 and PRAISE THE LORD I only have about a ten minute commute. Yes, you heard me. TEN MINUTES. Anyway, much to my misfortune, Bryce was on his way home later than normal tonight and I actually beat him home. Lately, we have been arguing back and forth about me making the dogs stay outside during the day. Okay, I'll be honest. It's really not arguing...it's more of me getting in trouble for not doing what I'm told...and you bet your sweet cheeks that it came back and bit me royally today.
As I pulled into the driveway, all I could think about was getting inside and fixing dinner. I walked through the door and this extremely foul odor smacked me square in the face. I frantically ran around to try to find it so I could dispose of the evidence before Bryce got home because I knew what was coming for me if I didn't get rid of it. It's usually Diva, so I started yelling at her while I was sniffing around for the terds that she usually leaves under the table (I guess because she thinks we won't find it...or that's the only place Moose can't get to her.) Well, it took me about 15 seconds to find it...
As I rounded the corner and walked into the living room, there it was...probably the biggest square footage of catastrophic dog diarreah one has ever seen in their lifetime. Not only was it a wonderful mixture of solid, slightly solid and liquid, as Moose relieved himself the excrement hit our hard wood floors ever so nicely and SPLATTERED. EVERYWHERE. Floors, walls, baseboards, furniture. He dropped a bomb and it exploded right in our living room, and I had the honor of trying to do damage control. Fabulous.
As I stood there frantic, knowing there was ABSOLUTELY NO WAY I was getting this cleaned up before Bryce got home, I started gagging because the whole freaking house reaked of Moose doo doo. When Bryce drove up, I told him I needed his help...and he then ever so sweetly reminded me that I was the one who kept the dogs inside. There was no other way to get rid of this mess than to just dive in, so I did. Well, first I went upstairs (side note: it smelled WORSE upstairs because the fumes had time to float to the second floor and so wonderfully ferment in our bedroom...) and got one of Bryce's bandanas that I so horribly loathe and tied it around my face because if I smelled anymore of that putrid stench, there would be vomit all over the floor to go along with the remnants of Pedigree. I looked like an old-timey western bank robber with that thing on my face.
So, after about ten rags and an entire roll of paper towels, spraying vinegar and mopping with boiling water, the atomic bomb had been properly disposed of and a haz mat shower was in need for all who had been inside the Thompson house.
Sweet Lord, God Almight I pray that I NEVER come home to a nice little surprise like that ever again in my entire life. Needless to say, both of our appetites were definitely surpressed.
I would post pictures of the disaster...but I figure there might be some law against traumatic photographs or something. Well that and I can't find my camera.
Wednesday, September 2, 2009
bryce instantly got up, walked into the closet and got his shot gun. (i'm assuming he grabbed the one he got as a groom's gift from all his buddies because he hasn't shot it yet...) locked. loaded. he walked out of the closet into a potential war zone...
okay, let's back up so i can give you some background on this. a few weeks ago, we were eating dinner and our door bell rang. it was one of our neighbors coming to tell us that there were three teenage kids creeping around our house. they looked in the back of bryce's truck and walked in our garage and our neighbor said they had walked by three times. the fourth time they walked by, it just so happened that bryce and our neighbor were standing in the driveway.
so, back to the burglary...
for those of you who haven't been in our house, all our bedrooms are upstairs and the downstairs is basically one big circle: front door, hallway, living room, kitchen, dining room, sitting room, front door...you get the point. my first thought was that the burglar would sneak up on bryce because of the lay out of the house, so i grabbed diva, snuggled her really tight because i was TERRIFIED, put 911 in on the cell phone and held my finger on the call button in case something happened. moose, on the other hand, was laying in the closet, obviously concerned about the safety of his mom and dad and sister...pssh!
alas, no gun shots and bryce returns. he then explains to me that one of my pictures had fallen off from the top of the cabinets and shattered. so, no burglary. just poor placement of a large flower print...hello saturday morning, you definitely came in with a bang!
now that the seriousness of the situation had subsided, the thought of bryce grabbing his shot gun now seemed kind of humorous. it was reminiscent of the scene in home alone when macaulay caulkin grabs his bb gun and says "i must protect this house." he then told me that he felt sorry for whoever was looking down the business end of his shot gun because it was full of "turkey shells." now for those of you (like myself) who this means nothing to, apparently that thing would put a hole the size of a basketball in you. yowza...talk about a bad day.
we then realized that moose is a poor excuse for a watch dog...i don't even know if he moved except to grunt with disapproval when bryce turned on the light.
we did decide that if we ever have someone break into our home that bryce is going to shoot them in front of the window...we need new windows in our house:) just kidding...but really...
Friday, August 21, 2009
I eventually realized that those little snots were eating the compost!!! I tried to bury the food items under the pile of grass, but Diva went in for the kill and dug through until she got what she wanted. So, after I was sick of her face being COMPLETELY crusted over with disgusting, rotting food, I had Bryce make me a compost bin. He took a regular galvanized trash can, drilled some holes in the bottom and voila! Our composter was born.
I sat it in the corner behind the little shed we have in the back yard to hide it...I mean it is a silver trash can, not very aesthetically pleasing. One day about two weeks ago, I was cleaning out the fridge and was taking stuff back to the compost. As I went back out on my second trip, I saw Moose and Diva, both looking very conspicuous. I walked over to Moose and realized that he had a HUGE chunk of pretzel in his mouth. (Mind you, this thing was covered in mold when i through it out...) I did everything short of tackling the dang dog - stepping on his feet, pulling his tail, pulling on his ears which he HATES - and couldn't get his jaws of steel open to take it out. It was absolutely hilarious because he WAS NOT surrendering and giving this thing up, and it was obvious that his mouth was full of something. He obviously thought he could out smart me, because he wouldn't chew it when I looked at him, but the second I turned away he started smacking...this went on for a good five minutes before I just gave up.
Yesterday, I was taking some stuff out to the compost and I apparently had forgotten to latch the lid shut because there it was in its full glory laying on the ground...and I knew who was responsible. After I gave Moose the good what-for, I put the lid on and we went back inside. A few minutes later, I heard him coughing and weezing in the kitchen. I didn't really think anything of it because those of you that know Moose know he makes the weirdest noises. We should've named in Chubacca (sp??) like the wuzzy guy from Star Wars.
Well anyway, so I hear this wheezing and coughing and all of the sudden I hear it. I knew exactly what had just happened. MOOSE HAD BARFED ALL OVER MY KITCHEN FLOOR. He stood there and looked at me, as if he was saying "Welp, clean it up, Mom!" I stood there for a second thinking a few things: 1. Would he try to clean it up himself (GROSS.) and 2. What would be the best plan of attack for this cow-patty sized pile of vomit. I grabbed some saran wrap to keep my hands from getting dirty, held my breath and went in for the kill. It was by far one of the NASTIEST things I've ever had to clean up, and that includes when the triplets would throw up on me.
Tuesday, August 4, 2009
This past weekend was a pretty important weekend in our lives. Not necessarily between Bryce and I, but for our family as a whole. Kevin (my cousin, who is really more like my brother) closed on a house about 1/2 a mile down the road from us in the beginning of July and this weekend, we broke in the new house! The weekend turned into a house warming party after Kevin had broken his engagement. I am so proud of him. It was not easy for him to go through such an event like that, but he is so much happier and better off! AND, I have to admit...I'm happy to have my Bubby back:)
On Friday, Mom, Julie, Jackie, Jackson and Nana drove down to Fort Worth. We all went out to eat Friday (including our adopted family member, Kyle) and celebrated Nana's 82 birthday. I'll tell you this, the woman's got spunk. Super-spunk depending on the day.
Saturday, Bryce put some meat on the smoker and "man time" ensued. The boys (including Jackson) did Lord knows what, and the girls went shopping and garage sale-ing!! My two aunts found some goodies for me since I didn't go...instead, I stayed home and made carrot cake (YUM!) and baked brie (YUMMIER!).
We all headed down to Kevin's about 4:30 and had a GREAT time. We saw old friends, made new friends and celebrated Kevin and where God is taking him in his life. The boys ended up going downtown, but Bryce and I were exhausted, so the old married couple came home and went to bed.
Kevin said he'd pay me $50 to come and clean up his house on Sunday...I politely declined. Okay, I guess "hell no" isn't polite...
In a nutshell, I am so proud of Kevin, super-deee-duper happy for him and I'm glad I have a neighbor that is family.
OH!!! I almost forgot to mention...one of my favorite things about Mom and Aunt Julie!!!! I L-O-V-E, LOOOOOOOOOVE it when they come to visit. Why, you ask? Because they clean my house! Woo hooo!!! They even scrub the bathtub and the toilet in the guest bath. So nice of them...and I really do appreciate it. So, thank you, Mom and Aunt Julie for always doing that. As long as you clean, the door to our home is always open:) (Just kidding. But really...)
We have survived five solid months of insanity: weddings, honeymoons, birthdays, company, and still re-doing this darn house. I am definitely looking forward to sleeping in on Saturday's and drinking coffee with my hubbee. Oh and football of course:) So now it's time to take a deep breath and relax...finally!
Tuesday, July 21, 2009
(Side note: when I talked to Bryce Friday morning before I left, here's what he said..."When are you coming back? I'm a mess. I ate corn on the cob and a bag of cheetos last night." Now, before you go feeling sorry for the man, please realize that we had a conversation the morning I left about how there were left overs in the fridge that were enough to get him through until I got home. All he needed to do was get a gallon of milk. His response was typical Bryce: "I made it 24 years on my own before you, I think I can make it a few days." Pssh...I hope he enjoyed the cheetos.)
Okay, so Friday when I got home, we went to Wal-Mart to get some groceries. We couldn't decide what we wanted, so we agreed it was a great idea to get a whole bunch of junk and eat it...including a box of oreo's. I was so excited I could hardly stand it because I couldn't even remember the last time I ate oreo's!!! We went to bed miserable. Saturday morning, Bryce had to go to work, so the husband and wife weekend would have to continue later that day...ugh. Anyway, while he was getting ready for work, I had to kick him out of the bathroom. SURPRISE!!!! An uninvited guest showed up to the weekend...a sweet little stomach bug decided to visit me for the entire weekend. Yes, the entire weekend.
I called Bryce at work and asked him to stop and get some medicine and diet sprite for me on his way home. I hadn't really eaten much since my stomach was so upset, and the only thing that sounded good was yogurt, so he took me to this place by the house that we just happened to drive by. It's amazing...yogurt and toppings, all you can eat, weighed by the ounce!!! So, I had chocolate cookie frozen yogurt with some strawberries, brownies and crunch bar (yes, I said crunch bar!) on it. It was great...until it decided to come back up that night. Gross, I know.
Bryce was the best little nurse I could ask for. He was so sweet and didn't even make me move from the couch for anything. The only bad thing about it, is that now I know what he's capable of, so he is totally screwed!!!
Two more weekends of social obligations, and then we are done for a while!! We're making the rule that we have no guests staying with us until September, at the earliest. So, on that note, if you want to come stay with us, you better do it the weekend of August 1st or plan on getting a hotel. Seriously. I mean it, people. :)
Wednesday, July 8, 2009
Bryce on the other hand, had a great time. He and Cole had been working on building a smoker for about a year now and they got it finished. They did such a great job! Bryce smoked chicken, ribs and brisket and it was yummmmmmmy!!! We got out there about 4 in the afternoon on Friday and it was blazin' hot. Cole took his boat, so we went out for a little while before sunset. It's a beautiful lake, reminds me a lot of Grand. Anyway, it was so hot that night that I pretty much slept in a pool of sweat. Gross.
Saturday, we spent the day out on the lake. Of course, I don't know why we would expect anything to go smoothly...something happened with the boat and it died, in the water. Praise Jesus we were close to the bank. I went and swam back to camp to get Bryce and Kyle (who were stuffing their faces, by the way) and the boys got someone to haul the boat to the dock. Eventually, we got it started. That night, I refused to sleep in the tent because there was no air flow, so I slept in the back of the truck. I guess none of us paid attention to the weather, because a storm blew in and it rained pretty much the whole night. Ugh. Oh and did I mention that I made home made chocolate chip cookies and the stupid raccoons ate the ENTIRE bag? Yeah, double ugh.
It was a fun weekend, but it was HOT. I think next year wherever we go, there will be an air conditioned cabin. Call me what you want, but I just can't do it.
Even though the 4th of July is a fun holiday, I think we need to also remember what it really stands for. I'm thankful for all those who fought for our independence so I can even have the opportunity to sleep in a nasty ol' tent in the dirt. I think sometimes we forget the humble beginnings of our country and I think if we all just took a few minutes to really think about that, maybe our country could take a step back to our roots.
Thursday, June 25, 2009
We were hoping that once we hit June, things would slow down...WE WERE WRONG! We have had something or someone in town every weekend in June, and July is looking the same!
I do have to say one of the major events that has occurred in the past few weeks is the beginning of my HATRED for Swiffer Wet Jet!!!! About three weeks ago, I was at my wits end trying to find something to clean our floors that doesn't leave them streaky, so I decided to try the Swiffer Wet Jet. Well, after cleaning all the hardwood floors in our house, Diva started acting really weird. I mean really, really weird. Turns out, my Aunt Julie told me that Swiffer Wet Jet is toxic to dogs!!! I took Diva to the vet and they confirmed that any sort of chemicals like that is hazardous, especially to small animals. Now, it doesn't really help that Diva continually scowers the kitchen floor looking for any crumbs, so I'm thinking she probably licked the floor, thus licking up the Swiffer solution, but there is absolutely no warning on the packaging. We really thought we were going to lose her. I laid in bed with her and just cried because her little face was just so sad. Bryce told me after we got back from the vet and everything was fine that he didn't think she was going to make it. Praise the Lord we were both wrong and now she's back to her happy, little princess self!
But, back to my point...DON'T USE SWIFFER WET JET!!! I even sent them an email and they replied saying that it was safe as long as it was used according to the directions. Now what does that mean?!?!!! How else can you use it? Spray, swiffer. Spray, swiffer. It's not brain surgery! Needless to say, I'm trying my best to go completely green at our house. We recycle AND I've started a composter! Bryce made it for me last night, so now instead of having a compost pile, we'll actually have a container that holds our compost. We have worms and everything out there:) Pretty exciting!!
Grad school has definitely picked up in intensity, and there is so much work to do! Between that and our activities on the weekend, it seems like we can't get a break! Maybe soon...hopefully.
Tuesday, June 2, 2009
Yesterday, as we headed out, everything seemed to be fine. I try to take Moose between four and five in the afternoon because the park isn't really busy yet. As we were walking over a bridge right by the soccer fields, Moose saw this little Chihuahua coming and of course, he wanted to sniff it out. So as he's walking toward this dog, I tighten up the leash and only let him have about a foot of length between the handle of the leash and his collar. Unfortunately, this didn't help. As Moose got closer to the dog, what did the owner do? SHE STOPPED. I was trying really hard to keep Moose down and away from them and as he jumped, he was yanked back by the leash. He was then all worked up and jumping around that he tripped me. Yes, tripped me...and I don't mean like a little stutter step. I fell straight down onto my right side in front of a ton of people. I even had to pick pebbles out of my hand like I was a little kid that had just fallen off my bike. I WAS PISSED. And a little hurt to be honest...the ol' hip was definitely giving me some problems after that little episode.
Well naturally, Moose just galloped on like nothing had ever happened. I was so pissed at him I could barely stand to look at the stupid dog. Needless to say, Moose is absolutely-without-a-doubt-no-more-discussion-needed getting neutered.
Tuesday, May 19, 2009
The beautiful Piff in all her bridal glory:)
Bryce's Nanny gave me a really cute dress and Mom gave me - much to Bryce's dismay - MORE THROW PILLOWS FOR OUR BED!! I was pumped, but Bryce gets really annoyed because I won't let him lay on "the pretty pillows." He says "if they're pillows on my bed I should be able to lay on them!" Our bedding is cream and black, so I FREAK if anything gets on it or near it, especially Moose because he sheds. I spend a lot of time trying to get his dang hair off our comforter.
This next weekend we're going to Houston for another wedding and then we're done for a while...whew! We love going to weddings of people we love, but we are definitely ready to be home and stop traveling for a while. Right now, our schedule is booked all the way til June, so I'm definitely looking forward to next month so we can have a break and spend some time at home...hopefully our house will be done soon!
Saturday, May 9, 2009
|kitchen before. NEVER IN MY LIFE have i been in a house|
that was so disgustingly dirty. yuck.
|kitchen before, looking from living room.|
|kitchen after, the first time. new light fixtues and hardware.|
***UPDATE: a lot of you asked how we did our cabinets, so here's what we did: light hand sanding, coat of dark red and dry brush ONE coat of chocolate. we used foam brushes, latex paint (that's what we had laying around) and then finished with a layer of poly.
|kitchen after the second (and final) time.|
|looking in from the living. please excuse the HUGE mess, dust on the drop lights|
and lack of trim around the pantry door (which is magnetic and chalkboard, btw!)
***UPDATE: since this post, we obviously have had a baby, so this really did become the nursery and the office was repurposed into a guest room/office.
|after! new carpet, paint, and trim. |
orange quilt/shams, blanket from west elm.
duvet/shams from pottery barn
the throw pillows and sheet set is from target.
This is the "smoker's room." Not because we smoke in it, but the previous owners did. It was the MOST DISGUSTING room I have ever stepped foot in. It's now our office/Bryce's man room.
we still have a TON left to do, but i think what we've done so far is pretty fantastic! hope y'all like it:)
Thursday, May 7, 2009
Thursday, April 23, 2009
today, i went over to the apartment in dallas with the plan to get all of the stuff i had left over there. we went a few weeks ago and got the bed and dresser and a few miscellaneous items and we were both under the impression there wasn't much left...HA! holy smokes i have a lot of crap. bryce came over on his lunch break to help me get the big stuff (i had a book case, desk and tv left) and he kicked the moving into high gear. i hate to move, so instead of just sucking it up and getting it over with, i have to whine about it and it takes three times as long.
of course, i didn't take enough boxes, so we resorted to the old "throw everything in a trash sack" stand by. my car was packed. his truck was packed. i have no idea how all this stuff even fit in that apartment. we got everything loaded up and packed up and now it's sitting in the garage of the house...i have no intentions of trying to move it in yet because we're still not done with the house (which is a whole other blog post in itself).
bryce did make the promise to me that next time we move, we're hiring people. i was so happy when he said that i almost cried. seriously. i cannot even begin to explain how much i hate moving.
so, i am officially moved out of the apartment. i guess now we really are truly married because i have nowhere else to go if bryce gets on my nerves:) just kidding! but seriously...
i'm hoping to do a post on the house in the next few days and put up some pictures, but i can't find my camera cord.
manda, i hope this helped pass some time at work. if not, i have a task for you: i think we should all go on a vacation this fall. do some internet investigating (you are sooo good at it!) and work up some options. i love you:)
Monday, April 20, 2009
Wednesday, April 15, 2009
We've been married for about a month so far and everything is great! As cheesey as it sounds, we were totally made for this "married" thing. He's such a good little husband...even brought me flowers for our one month anniversary! (Don't ask him about this, he has to keep up his burly man facade!)
Our honeymoon was AMAZING. We (by we I mean, Bryce, me and Rick Steves) left Sunday afternoon, the day after the wedding (March 15th) and our flight from Tulsa to Atlanta was delayed. We missed our flight from Atlanta to Paris, causing us to miss our flight from Paris to Venice. We got to Venice about 6 hours later than planned, with no luggage...awesome. We went to the lost baggage counter in Venice and the lady was super grumpy. We learned a very valuable lesson: ALWAYS get the number from your luggage tag so they can track it. Luckily, our bags were pretty easy to find since they had "Bride" and "Honeymooners" luggage tags ha! As it turns out, our luggage went to NYC and was delivered to our hotel the next day at about lunch time, so thankfully we were only without our luggage for one night!
Venice is amazing! There are no cars or scooters and the city is connected via 2000 alleys and 400 waterways...thus it's super easy to get lost because all the alleys look the same! St. Mark's square and basilica were beautiful! I wanted Bryce to take a picture with all the pigeons on him but he said absolutely not! Birds freak me out, so that was out of the question for me as well. I fell in love with the Murano glass and Bryce had to keep me in line so I didn't buy everything I saw! We did splurge on one thing we both agreed on...a painting. It's of the famous Rialto bridge in Venice and it is beautiful.
We left Venice via train and it was about a 3 hour ride to Florence. Florence is a much larger city...I think about 450,000 people live there. Florence was beautiful (like every place we went!) and is full of museums and is definitely a major center for arts and culture. We saw Michaelangelo's David (which is flipping huge!) and then went to the Duomo which is the big churhc there. From there, we headed over to the Uffizi gallery which houses some majorly famous art...unfortunately, Bryce and I just don't have the appreciation for art. I try, I really do, but I just don't have an appreciation for art that would keep me in a museum for longer than about an hour. So, we loved Florence, but it was definitely a quick stop.
We left Florence via our sweet rental car (we had to upgrade to a four-door because my luggage wouldn't fit!) and headed southeast towards Rome. We stopped at the US National Cemetery just outside of Florence and it was beautiful. We continued on and stopped at any and every winery we wanted to and did some tastings. The second night on our own (without anything planned from our travel agent, Florence was the first) we stayed in San Gimigano. This little town was amazing! It was inside the old city walls and you felt like you just stepped back 400 years. Our hotel was built in like the 1300's...it's so crazy to try and wrap your head around that!
The next day, we did more wine tastings and headed toward Siena. It was really cold this day and the wind was blowing so hard. We only stayed one night in Siena and I wish we would've stayed longer. Siena may be my favorite place from the trip. It's a smaller city (about 60,000) and there's no scooters inside the city walls. It's so romantic and it's a place to just slow down and enjoy great wine or cappuccino...actually, I recommend gelato:) I had it every day. Seriously.
We left Siena and headed toward Rome. DRIVING IN ROME IS A DISASTER. It took us three hours to find somewhere to return our car and the place we finally found wasn't even the original return spot. Grr. We took a taxi to our hotel to find that Bryce had read the itinerary wrong and we didn't have reservations until the next day. I was not happy. We went and tried to find a hotel to stay at and they were all booked. Seriously, no vacancy anywhere. At this time, we didn't know the Rome Marathon was the next day and there's like 60,000 participants. Since we didn't have anywhere to stay, we went to the train station and used their hotel reservation people to find us a room. We got a room (whew!) which was nice, but in kind of a sketchy area of town. (Yes, I do laugh about this now.) That night, I decided I needed to wash my jeans, so I put them in the sink and washed them with shampoo and hung them to dry in the bathroom. The next morning, we got up early since we missed most of the day before due to trying to find the flipping car return...unfortunately, my idiot self didn't think to hang my jeans outside the window and they were soaked. So, for an hour and a half, I sat in the bathroom with the blow dryer. Idiot.
We went to the Colosseum, Roman Forum, Circus Maximus...all the major tourist sites. I'm not going to write a whole lot about the sites we saw because honestly, there are NO words that can describe how amazing they are. I'm still trying to wrap my head around the fact those structures are THOUSANDS of years old and we were standing in them. Crazy!
We saw the Vatican (which was amazingly beautiful) and ate gelato, which was the daily norm:) Basically, that wraps up Rome.
By the end of our trip, we were both exhausted and couldn't wait to get home. There were a lot of things we totally take for granted for example, ice. You don't get ice in any of your drinks. Our flight left at 8:30 on Wednesday morning (March 25) and our transfer from the hotel picked us up at 5:30. Early. We got to the airport at like 6:15 and were wondering why the heck we got picked up so early. More frustrating, we were both starving because we didn't eat breakfast and none of the shops in the airport were open yet. Grrr. We got on the plane and headed back to Atlanta. 10 1/2 hours. Coach. Ugh. It was a long flight. When we got to Atlanta, we tried to get on the earlier flight into Tulsa, but we couldn't so we had a five hour layover. We finally got home at 10:30 central time. It was a loooooooong day to say the least.
We didn't have any jet lag going or coming and we know it's because we just stayed up. It was tough and no fun being tired, but it was nice to not lose anytime in Italy because we had jet lag.
We had such a great time and definitely can't wait to go back. Next time, We're starting in Tuscany (wine, duh!) and then heading south down the coast.
I'm working on getting the pics on here. Stay tuned:)