When In ROME!!!

rome view

What can I even say about my trip?! It was exhausting, scary, amazing… EVERYTHING!

If you’d asked me where I would want to travel if I could go anywhere in the world, my answer for years was “Italy!” I want to travel everywhere and anywhere but Italy has always been my #1.

So here I was about a month away from my the big 3-0 and not really feeling up to a big party like originally planned so I decided to look around for vacation deals. And I found one! I asked some gals at work if I was a crazy person and they both said now is the time! No husband or kids keeping me here. Go while I can. So I did!

I left Phoenix at 7am on Sunday sand landed in Rome 7am Monday morning (my birthday.)

colo 2

Guys, that first day was rough! I made all these plans and researched so much and yet it all went straight out the window when I got there! It took so much longer to get out of the airport and off the train into the city than I thought and then I was lost! I had a walking tour audio guide on my phone starting at the Campo de’ Fiori but I had no CLUE how to get there. I was starving, tired, lost and scared in country who’s native language I did not speak. Oh boy! I talked to an employee of the metro who spoke English but just barely and came to the conclusion that I would just not find the Campo de’ Fiori today. But I could easily get to the Colosseum which was the plan for day 2 so I just headed there and adjusted the plan.

colo.jpg

arch.jpg

I downloaded Rick Steve’s audio tour that walks you through the Colosseum, Roman Forum, Arch of Constantine and Palatine Hill.

colo self

forum

After I tried to continue on with my plan but boy oh boy I was lost and confused. I got on the metro and saw a stop called “Piramide” and figured that had to be near the Pyramid of Caius Cestius that I wanted to see so I got off and sure enough, found my way to the pyramid (after getting some gelato!)  Tours were closed but it was still cool to see.

statue

Then I wanted to go the Aventine Hill and look through the keyhole so I walked, and walked, and walked and died. My feet were hurting, I was lost and still had to make my way back to the hotel with NO idea how I was going to get there. It was rough, But poor me, lost of the streets of Rome, right? I finally hailed a taxi and just said ‘take me here.’ That was the SCARIEST car ride of my life. Italians really are crazy drivers! I got all settled at my hotel and the next day asked for directions to Campo de’ Fiori and finally was able to find my way around the city!

Day 2 was my fav day! Piazza Navona, Pantheon, Trevi Fountain and Spanish Steps. Then the Capuchin Crypt which was so creepy-cool. The walls were decorated with thousands of skeletons from Catholic monks!

navona.jpg

panth

step foutn

I think the Pantheon was one of my fav places!

steps.jpg

I also LOVED walking through the Villa Borghese! I would have loved it even more if my feet weren’t so achy.. but it was green and gorgeous and an absolute beautiful day. There was even an accordion player outside playing stereotypical Italian music like you hear in movies and I just loved every second of it. Cheesy? Yeah but it was a dream!

villa

And finally day 3 was the Vatican (Sistine Chapel and St. Peter’s Basilica) followed by the Castel Sant’Angelo. By day 3 my feet were hurting! I wish I kept track of how far I walked! Farther than I should have since I kept getting lost haha.

st-pete.jpgpete viewcastel.jpg

It was beyond beautiful and I am so thankful the opportunity I had to go to Rome. Are you allowed to be proud of yourself for going on vacation? I went to Europe alone. It was kind of scary but I made it. I found my way (with the help of Google Maps and some very helpful English speaking Romans!) and I crossed another major thing off my bucket list!

gelato.jpg

EATS: I know what you are thinking, that this should have been quite the  culinary adventure but I don’t like pasta! Plus it was so hot over there that I wasn’t very hungry, especially for anything heavy. I mostly ate gelato! I tried a bunch of flavors (favorites: crema and cantelope!) But lots of the flavors are chocolate based which I’m not a choc fan either! I kept eyeballing them and then just going with a fruit flavor.

pizza
I was so surprised by how much I liked it I had to stop taking bites to snap the pic!

I did try a bunch of different pizzas and I always like to be adventurous but you know what? The best pizza slice I ate over there was at the airport when I just needed to eat something before the flight* and ordered tried and true cheese! But I’ll tell you this, for both red sauced based pizzas I tried over there, the sauce was too sweet!

Also, I did not need to eat before the flight because for the 10 hours I was trapped on that trash can I swear I ate 7 times. They were constantly passing out lunch, then a snack, then dinner and the constant bev cart. I’ve never eaten so much in my life!

treviAll in all it was a wonderful, once in a lifetime trip and I did throw a coin in the Trevi Fountain so I guess that means I get to go back someday. Which I would LOVE to know what I know what I’m doing and where I’m going!

 

 

 

Advertisements

Another Spin Around the Sun

On Monday I turn thirty. Thirty! 

30

I didn’t expect it from myself but I am one of those girls that is sad about turning 30! I don’t want to. I saw some meme thing online the other day that said the only other option was being dead which… I’m still not sure which is worse! Haha. Okay fine. I’ll turn the big 3-0! I still have a lot of things I want to do.

As the day looms near, I can’t help by reflect on this past year and what I did on my last birthday. I set up my 30 before 30 goal list. I accomplished ehhh… about 1/2 of them. This year, it’s time to do BETTER! So if you want, go check out my 30 “while I am” 30 list! Some are health related, some are personal, some are spiritual and some are just for fun!!

I know I’m already checking off #1) put a stamp on my passport because 1st thing in the morning I am flying off to ROME!!

If you ever had asked me where I would want to travel if I could go anywhere in the world, I would’ve said Italy. So since I’m still single and have no husband or children weighing me down, I bought myself a very expensive birthday present and going on a Roman Holiday!!  Just call me Anya 🙂

 

Looking Back on 2016

I have a terrible memory so honestly, whatever happened earlier than say July is basically a blur. So end of the year recaps are hard for me but I did want to take a minute and reflect. I got to do some pretty cool stuff!

temple

For starters in Feb, I got to go through the LDS temple. A truly special day. Even if you’re not of this religion, if you have the chance to walk through a temple open house- DO it. The buildings are always so beautiful.

I went on my nephew’s birthday. The poor dude and his little brother were in the hospital so so sick. Luckily they all came out just fine but that was certainly memorable. 😦

 

9-run-run

In April, I ran a ULTRA Ragnar with the best team there ever was. Team 9 Run Run!! Honestly, I could talk about that weekend for hours but it did result in one of my fav pictures of me:

big-smile

Taken after my 9 mile leg! (1 leg of 6!)

dirty-girl

Then about 1 week later, I ran the Dirty Girl with these awesome ladies.

me-and-lo

flah

In the spring-ish, I went on the best date of my life (it lasted 12 hours!) with that handsome fella and later he took me to Flagstaff. I just loved it there; I thought it was so pretty. I may not have ended up with that guy but we’re still close and he’s saved my bum way too often. I owe him a whole lot!

otown

(Sorry for the blurriness!) Right after Flag, I got to go with a gal pal to see O-Town!! HA. I’m friends with Dan Miller’s brother so we all went to see him preform in Phx. My 13 year old self was beyond excited.

fontana-half

In June I ran the Fontana Half and wanted to die.

hawaii

wai

Oh July… I turned the big 29! And got to go to Hawaii. I am thankful for the opportunity I had to go, however… HI was a big ol’ bust. Lots of good and lots of bad memories tied to this trip. I think I’ll stick to California.

lb-half

Like Long Beach. I forgot my pants but I still ran the Long Beach Half marathon!

crash

Last month, I totalled my car. BIG Frowny face on that life event. It took me outta the running game for a few weeks and cost a LOT of money. But, honestly, it could’ve been so so much worse and just I’m glad I’m alive to see 2017.

christmas

In the summer, my parents moved to the valley so I’ve been able to spend more time with them and celebrate holidays with them. I just had to include this picture from Christmas day because how cute are my niece and nephews!!

nye

Which brings us to today. Another New Years Eve at work. I’m thankful for my job. and my coworkers for whipping up a nacho bar potluck. Time to go pig out on my last cheat meal on 2016 🙂

 

Happy New Years Everyone!!! 

 

30 BEFORE 30

I turn 29 in exactly 1 month.

That means I turn 30 in exactly  1 year and 1 month. 30!! I’m so not ready to turn 30…. but I have a year to GET ready. (Can one get “ready” to turn 30???) I made a list of 30 things I want to accomplish before I turn the big 3-oh. Some big, some small, all doable!

I’ve already been able to accomplish a lot in my life and I’m pretty proud of that. (I ALWAYS lose at that “I have never” game. Always.) I’ve already:

1) lived on my own- no roommates or anything!

2) got my Bachelor’s degree

3) adopted a dog. The love of my life, Copper Mercury

IMG_3851 (2)

4) ran a marathon. And half marathon, and 15K, 10K, 5K and Ragnar….

image

So here’s what made the list! Wish me luck!

  1. Swim with the sharks (ultimate bucket list item of all time!! I’m already signed up to do this on 7/21!!) 
  2. Take a solo vacation
  3. Write 30 things I’m thankful for
  4. Write my will
  5. Plan my funeral (Morbid? I’m already 1/2 done…) 
  6. Do 30 acts of kindness
  7. Throw out 30 things I don’t use
  8. Weigh in the 130‘s (139 counts!)
  9. Send article into weight loss magazine 
  10. Take a cooking class
  11. Save $3000
  12. Read 30 books
  13. Watch 30 movies (I’m thinking like the classics. I’m terrible at watching movies.) 
  14. Take a spontaneous trip
  15. Reduce CC debt by 30
  16. Go to 5 new temples 
  17. Volunteer 30 hours
  18. Paddleboard
  19. Order room service
  20. Host a dinner party
  21. Take parents out to dinner and pay for them
  22. Try caviar, truffles, alligator, kangaroo and octopus
  23. Read the BOM, Bible, D&C and PGP
  24. Get CPR recert
  25. Go to NFL game (also scheduled! October game Cardinals V NY Jets!) 
  26. Finalize 72 hour preparedness kit
  27. Get sports massage
  28. Run 300 miles
  29. New hobby
  30. Be able to do 30 push ups (in a row, at least in top position)