Friday, September 28, 2012

The One with all the European coffee

This is my first attempt to share some photos of my recent trip to Europe. Let's start with something small, shall we? 

I will give you a small warning...I am pretty sure this may get repetitive! Its all about the coffee that I drank in Europe, and only now have I discovered how many coffee photos I took! I can't leave any out, right?

So here we go!

My first coffee was at an amazing bar in Amsterdam. A cute cat lived in the bar and I loved that. Joy ordered for me because I was so nervous. (For no reason of course...everyone in Holland speaks English)

I was thrilled that my coffee came with a little cookie! Seriously, these Europeans know how to live.

I took a photo of these great containers at the house we stayed at in Holland:

The second coffee I purchased was black coffee and it came with a little cream, sugar and (again) a cookie. I was thrilled, of course.

Coffee in Germany was quite varied. I tried drip coffee...

A Latte Macchiato:

A Cappuccino:

All came with a little cookie! Joy noticed that the free cookies are smaller in Germany.

On my last day in Germany I was treated with a coffee made from home. One of Joy's friends had us over for breakfast and she made me a cappuccino with a fancy machine. Unfortunately the process was fun, but the taste was pretty bad.
Coffee in France was a bit varied. The first time we ordered coffee, we got espresso:

The next day I ordered a cappuccino and I got one with enormous foam and a bit of chocolate dust!

Another time, I ordered coffee and got drip coffee, but it was really a double espresso, I'm sure. In France, the coffee always comes with sugar cubes! It was interesting putting sugar in my coffee, since I usually just stick to cream or milk.

This photo just shows a shot of Espresso that I recieved with my lunch, which was a sort of egg tart.

One night in Annecy, we ordered dessert (tiramisu!) and I got a delicious cappucino, also with a little chocolate dust.

Coffee in Italy is something else. I must admit that despite trying all kinds of coffee in France (except for French press....couldn't find that anywhere!) we really decided it was not the greatest. But Italian coffee really lives up to its reputation. Its AMAZING.

My first cappuccino was in Milan at the train station. Its a bit of a cheat because it had caramel sauce on top, but I'm not ashamed of was worth it. You can see a peek of that canoli behind it, also a delicious choice.

That same night when we got to Monterosso I had a cappuccino after dinner. Its pretty typical in Europe to finish your dinner with coffee! I don't mind.

The next morning I got another cappuccino with my cream-filled croissant. (I could do another blog post on those!)

Coffee in Venice was more about the experience than the coffee itself. This first photo is of our coffees at San Marco square where we watched the dueling pianos. This tiny drink cost 7 Euro! Oh, and there was a 6 Euro cover charge to just sit there and watch the concert. Maybe not something I would repeat, but it was a fun experience.

This next coffee was at a fancy place near Rialto....another expensive place of course. The furniture and silver trays are fun. This is yet another 6.5 Euro cappuccino.

This last photo was taken in Rome! We sat on the corner of Piazza Navona in the rain and I ordered a coffee with whipped cream. So they brought be a whole cup of it.
 So I will leave it there! That's enough coffee, eh? I have to say, coffee is what I miss most about Europe. We've got our espresso maker out and I'd like to make more cappuccinos. Somehow its just not the same. But I will keep trying!

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

The one with all the Lists

10 Things that I know I love:
1) Converse sneakers
2) Summer turning into Fall
3) Goat cheese
4) Photography
5) European cappucinos
6) Long runs without pain
7) German rock music (Joy gave to me!! Can't spell or pronounce the bands)
8) Red wine
9) Arm & Hammer toothpaste
10) Sticky notes

10 Things that I don't really love:
1) Waking up early
2) Sun setting earilier
3) Sticky leaves (always gets caught on my feet near my house!)
4) Going through my Europe photos...I've had enough!
5) People who don't show up to their dental appointments
6) Love handles
7) Being worried all the time
8) Paying Bills (ok...that's obvious)
9) My messy scrapbook room with four bikes in it
10) My carpet. I hate my carpet. I want to rip it out. Unfortunately I'm a renter.

10 Things I have been slacking on...
1) Scrapbooking
2) Blogging
3) Project Life
4) Lifting weights
5) Taking vitamins
6) Spending time with friends
7) Being outside
8) Painting my nails
9) Instagram
10) Going to bed early

10 Things I have been working on:
1) Eating healthy again
2) Getting back to daily running
3) Cleaning the house each day
4) Watching X-Files
5) Watching less network TV
6) Reading the Bible every day
7) My Europe photobook (ordered yesterday!)
8) Physical therapy for my delinquent hip flexor
9) Cooking
10) Drinking water

10 Things I'm looking forward to this Fall:
1) Cooking at high school retreat next weekend
2) Maybe catching a football game or two
3) Trying some new cold weather recipes...especially crockpot stuff!!
4) Carving a pumpkin
5) Autumn photography...especially those trees at Green lake.
6) Half marathon on November 4th
7) Making cappucinos at home
8) Having friends over instead of going out
9) Wearing my boots and scarves
10) Planning another (somewhat) Paleo Thanksgiving

Sunday, September 16, 2012

I'm Home!!

Woo hoo! I have arrived at home after a three week trip to Europe. It was a blast! After an entire day of travel yesterday, its a little hard to remember the good times. Here is our schedule from yesterday:

6:30 Rush around at our B&B in Rome, last minute packing and making sure our wine we bought in Cinque Terre is tightly packed and safe for the plane.
7:00 take the Metro to train station
7:22 take the Train to the airport
8:00 Arrive 3 hours early for our flight...took about a half hour for security so we had 2+ to spare in the train station!
11:30 leaves for USA....after a slight delay from a medical emergency
10 hour flight!!! At least we had the nice plane with the TVs. I ate a nice lunch of beef and potatoes...actually quite delicious for airplane food. I watched Hunger Games (awesome), Man on a ledge (great), The Lucky One (terrible), two episodes of New Girl, one episode of Sex and the City, several episodes of Arrested Development. My feet were really swollen and I felt completely sick to my stomach and had a terrible headache. I am not meant to sit for 10 hours straight!!!
3:30 PM (N. Carolina time) Arrive in US...Customs!! Not so bad, just long lines. Got our bags and had to recheck! Matt had purchased wine at the Duty Free shop so we had to find a way to shove them into our already full backpacks and recheck our luggage AGAIN. We went through TSA AGAIN.
8:00 PM Plan ride to Seattle. 6 hours!
10:52 Seattle time....Arrive in Seattle and Bob picks us up to take us home. A very long day. We felt sick and completely exhausted.

Now that its after 6am we are up bright and early and ready for coffee and eggs! I just downloaded all our photos and we are going to look at them on the big screen of our TV.

Matty made eggs and bacon (going low carb for a while!) and some coffee and I feel truly at home.

Saturday, September 1, 2012

The one I wrote in Germany

I will write quickly because I don't have much time! I am leaving for Paris in the morning, and Joy and I are catching the train in about 5 hours. Of course I still have to paint my nails and watch a tv show with I wont be getting much sleep. :)

OMG! Time has been flying by. I have explored Amsterdam, seen some amazing windmills, eaten a Dutch pancake, ridden on the Autobahn (scary with Joy as the driver), drank lots of coffee, gone grocery shopping in Germany (so fun!), toured an amazing Palace, visited an ancient Castle, roller bladed through the streets of Duesseldorf with thousands of locals, ran 10 miles into the countryside of Germany, and spend quality time with my sister. So much more! I have taken over 700 photos. (Some are repeats...playing with exposure, etc.)

One week has nearly passed and I will head into a different country tomorrow. I am so looking forward to Paris, but also quite nervous about these scary French people I hear about. :)

Oh and I love Germany. Duesseldorf will be hard to beat. (Surprising...yes?)

Photos will come later, but to glance quickly at some photos you can check out my instagram feed on the sidebar. I try to instagram when I get back to Joy's place at night and I have wifi. Who knows if this will continue in France and Italy, but I hope so!

Good Night!