Life expectancy of a ballerina bun

Thursday, June 28, 2012

I love summer!!! Yesterday, I got a $14/ 60 min massage at the chiropractor (yay, insurance!), successfully mastered the ballerina bun (via a super helpful video from Pinterest), and went to my first ever kickboxing class (kapow!).

I learned that I love this new-to-me blogger, wendyslookbook--she's gorgeous, elegant, a fellow Cal alum, was raised in the foster care system, and also has a passion for helping disadvantaged youth! Talk about big, new girl crush.

Yesterday was full of enlightenments.  In addition, I learned that I look silly when I air punch and more importantly, I discovered the life expectancy of a ballerina bun. I did the whole sock bun thing--there was a rolled up sock hidden under my hair--what what?! It held up pretty well throughout the day. My hair is a bit thin, so I was worried about the sock showing through under, but a few bobby pins took care of that. The true test came when I went to kickboxing class--which was SO fun, btw! I had a suspicion it might not hold up and I was right. No big annoyances, though, as the ponytail stayed in place. The bun just fell down, exposing the sock, which I'm figuring looked like a scrunchie and left me with an ultra 90s look. Not my favorite, but I figure in this day and age there are worse things. Now I know that the gramma top knot is a better choice for exercise class. Although, for regular daily errands, I'm excited to have had success with this new do! Here are some after pics where my face is noticeably more red from having fake beaten someone up!:


Wednesday, June 27, 2012

After 12.5 hrs of flight and a 5.5 hr layover, we are back home in Austin! Can I just say that the Chicago layover was much more pleasant due to Top Chef Master, Rick Bayless's, restaurant Frontera? Interior Mexican food, including simple, perfect guac--much more nomz than your average airport fare!

How easily I digress... So I was really happy to catch up with a girlfriend at one of our favorite Austin spots, Foodheads. Foodheads is in an old house and serves delicious soups, salads, and sandwiches. They have a cozy interior, with hardwood floors, pale yellow walls, mismatched furniture--including BOOKcases. So what did I find waiting for me on one of those shelves, but THIS beauty below! I mean, crazy! Austinites, find this next time you're there and peek inside. Mind blown!

Summer reads

Saturday, June 23, 2012

We left Manarola (Cinque Terre) today to return to Rome. I was sad to leave the small seaside town, but consoled myself by thinking of the tower! We scored this crazy apartment to stay in on that's 5 small stories and in the middle of Travestere. After a sweaty train ride, we are finally here. The tower is immaculate and nicely decorated. A funny thing though is that everything is on a separate floor! For instance, I'm on the top floor in bed and EK is just below me in a sitting room watching Spain and France in the Eurocup. A bathroom is below him, followed by the living room, then kitchen. Good thing we didn't buy groceries yet because a midnight snack would entail descending a fair amount of stairs! Don't get me wrong, this place--with its red bathtub--is rad. I'm just a bit extra clumsy today after travel, heat, and wine. I miss the sounds of the sea whispering us to sleep. Perhaps I can pretend the whirs of the AC are the sea waves?

One cool thing is I'm right under the bedroom skylight! I love skylights. Sleeping under one reminds me of the brief period I lived on a boat with my dad, while in high school. I guess it wasn't technically called a skylight, but it was the small door in the hull (?). that opened directly into the deck and looked up into the stars. I slept just under it and was rocked to sleep by the waves.

I've been really loving my first read this summer. Parts of the book have been stressful, but I love the way it's written and the story told. There's a lot of jumping around in time and I've hated seeing characters I care about make poor decisions, but it's good storytelling if I'm caring about the (loads of) characters, right? After this, i have the Tina Fey book to finish. I started it last summer, but never did get through it all. I also have Eugenides's, The Marriage Plot (I'm too easily distracted during the school year so now is the time to squeeze in so much reading for pleasure!). I'm especially looking forward to that one, as I've loved his other books. What are you reading this summer??

Last, below are my new pjs purchased at a new fav store, Oysho, in Venice. I probably would have left with more pretty, simple pieces, but they were closing so I just quickly bought the pj set in this unique print. The pj shorts and tank have bicycles and hot air balloons!

Floaties + Frodo in Cinque Terre

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Liguria is known for its pesto. Today, trofie Ligure--pasta with pesto, potatoes, & string beans knocked me on my bum! The pasta was fresh, surprisingly light, delicious, and I was addicted. EK and I shared the dish for lunch. As our other favorite trattoria was closed today, we went back to the same place for dinner so I could eat the same meal twice in one day! I've only done this before with California burritos, so we're talking GOOD. Tomorrow we plan to do much hiking in between the cities so hopefully the exercise will help even out these tasty indulgences! :)

Today I only took about 15 minutes to slowly ease myself into the Mediterranean. This is about a 5-10 minute improvement from yesterday! Most people swimming around, including EK, just dove right in. I have rarely been able to do this because I am such a wimp when it comes to the cold! Perhaps tomorrow I'll find the courage, but then again maybe not! Once I'm out there though, it's so great. I wish I could bottle up these sea sounds and smells and take them home with me--even the squawking seagulls in the middle of the night that I confused for seals. Today EK dubbed the sea feel left on your skin as the "crusty salty" of the sea. Per favore, vorrei ordinare due bottiglie dei "crusty salty" per portare via!

Our wedding on Style Me Pretty!!

The day I married my best friend, Eric, was seriously the best day of my life. All of our family and friends came together and helped make that day absolutely amazing. To see so many important people from all parts of your life in the same place, smiling, supporting you, and having fun with each other is indescribable. Simply put, I have never felt so much JOY.

I am so completely stoked that our super talented wedding photographer submitted our photos to one of my favorite wedding blogs, Style Me Pretty, and they've featured our big day!!! I used to check this blog frequently in the months leading up to our wedding and "pin" inspiration pics. It's so nice to have the hard work of our friends and family recognized (especially that of our rad friend and wedding planner, Linda)! We really did rely so much on the goodwill of our loved ones--THANK YOU for everything and PLEASE allow us to return the favor!!!!

Cinque Terre: Manarola

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Today was magical. We woke, got cappucini, were stunned by incredible views at every corner, swam in the sea, ate the best meal of our trip so far (mussels in lemon and olive oil, spaghetti w red pepper tomato sauce and shrimp, baked cod with potatoes), did a little gift shopping, napped, and walked to another town: Riomaggiore. The path to Riomaggiore is called Via dell'Amore. It was along the hillside, directly facing the water. Pics to follow!

One thing we keep seeing are locks with couples' names are everywhere--on bridges, fences. Silvia told us a popular book that was made into a movie began the trend. I believe a couple places a lock on a bridge to profess their love for each other?

Tomorrow I can't wait to swim in the sea again!! I love the smell of the salt water and the way it makes my hair and skin feel. EK takes a shower to rinse off, but I try to go as long as possible before washing it away! (btw, the pink building w 3 windows in the last photo is our hotel room! The middle window is ours. <3)

Changing thoughts, changing future

Monday, June 18, 2012

This moment.                           Peggy Guggenheim Museum -- Venice, Italy

Giorno 6: Venezia!

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Our days in Italy have been filled with loads of walking and good food. We got in at midnight last night after walking around my old neighborhood, Dorsoduro. (Pizza Al Volo's "pizza Americana" not only has French fries on it, but also hot dog pieces--ack!)

This morning we slept in and relaxed. EK made lunch with my favorite pasta sauce out of the jar--it's made with roasted red peppers and pecorino! After, we saw Titian's art at the Frari and then an exhibit with models of DaVinci's inventions, inside the church where the library scene from Indiana Jones & the Last Crusade was filmed.

It seems that at every other corner we'd stop to get wine, pastries, gelato, or cappucini. After cocktails on the Zattere, we had another delicious dinner--this time seafood risotto--then went to a string concert in a beautiful old church by the Accademia. We weren't allowed to take pictures during the concert, but I have a few of the space. Tomorrow, we are going to the island of Murano and then Scuola Di San Rocco to see the paintings of another Venetian master, Tintoretto. I'm excited to ride the water taxi, the vaporetto!

Giorni 4 & 5: Venice reunion w/SILVIA!!!!

Saturday, June 16, 2012

We took the train to lovely Venezia and met up with my even lovelier old roomie from when I lived here, ten years ago! She is absolutely a sweetheart, funny, beautiful... All of the best qualities in one hott, Italian firecracker of a woman. She also had super exciting news that she is expecting her first baby this December! I know Silvia will make such a wonderful mother and I'm so happy for her!!!

Between Silvia, Eric, and Venice, I keep feeling like I need to pinch myself to make sure everything's real! I've been wanting to be here for so long and all I can say is, a "bird is my heart."

(Here are a few pics, but I will update with more/nicer pics from my proper camera once we're back. Until then, it's just my trusty iPhone.)

Giorno 3: Euro Cup-->Italian living room fort

Thursday, June 14, 2012

This afternoon, we watched Euro Cup with our gracious hosts, Fabio & Betta. Their friend came over and brought a homemade cake with plums. Fabio served it with cafe, but because he didn't want to miss any of the game, he prepared it in the living room using a camping stove!! Only now do I realize how badly I should have taken a picture! Alas. It was so nice to watch the game with them. They were a bit frustrated because what was supposed to be an easy win for Italy, ended in the tie. You can't underestimate the underdog drive, ya?

We spent the earlier half of the day walking around, sightseeing, and poking our noses into shops. One of them was a vintage clothing store where the excited owner kept finding me pretty things to try on. I was happy to leave with her choice of a super soft night gown "dagli anni settanti!").

Below: scooter, speciale 50 (ala our fav Lunapop song!!!), + blood orange granite

Giorno 2: Colosseo e forum romani

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

We had dinner at a rad place we found on yelp. I'm quickly accumulating pics of happy EK when food arrives. The best part of my month was when I talked to my sweetest, dearest roomie from Venice tonight and learned we're going to meet up with her on Friday in Venice!!!

Giorno 1: Siamo Arrivati a Roma!!!

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

We were able to sleep on the plane and had a wonderful first day in Rome! We spent the afternoon exploring the neighborhood where we're staying, San Lorenzo. Our hostess recommended plenty of delicious places to eat and EK even got a haircut at the Italian barber! Those pics are on my camera so I will share later.

We're now back at the bnb and it's finally pajama jammy jammy time. Eric is watching Euro Cup and after this (trying for 1 post/day), I'm going to read some then stretch out and fall asleep in a bed! I think we're going to the Colosseum and Roman Forum tomorrow.

Here are some shots of our first explorations:

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