Reflection of a Journey

Summer is winding down, and as I look ahead, I realize that our time in Germany is coming to a close. In a few short months it will be time to get ready for a new adventure! Such is the life of a military family.

I have really enjoyed living in Europe these past three years.  This girl who grew up in a small town in Michigan used to fantasize about seeing the Eiffel Tower, and I still shake my head in disbelief that I did!

Mel Paris shrt

Ahh Paris! Tourist shirt over an H&M dress.

From Amsterdam, to Paris, Switzerland, Crete, Berlin, Venice, Milan, Verona, Rome, Florence, Innsbruck, Munich – and all of the little towns we visited in Germany, it’s been an amazing ride. I appreciate and treasure the wonderful opportunity for all the travel we’ve been able to do.

Calling Romeo on Juliet's Balcony in Verona!

Calling Romeo on Juliet’s Balcony in Verona!

It’s been a trade off, though. For all the wonderful memories made, we’ve missed out on weddings, a funeral, Christmas parties, birthdays, and everyday hangout time with family and friends. Our time away definitely makes me more appreciative of the time we do get with them, and with every passing year, I know there is less time for all those things. It’s hard being away sometimes.

Wearing an icon from Deb Shops in front of the iconic Gucci store in Rome.

Wearing an icon from Deb Shops in front of the iconic Gucci store in Rome.

Someday we will be back living in the States, and though I will be glad to be closer to loved ones, I know I will be in for culture shock. I will miss the charm of a small village, the castle on a hill, a designer store just minutes away, the ancient architecture.

Will I be able to adapt back to a city with strip malls, Wal Marts, and fast food on every exit? I don’t know.

But until then, I will make as many memories here as possible!

With Cleopatra and Marc Antony in Verona.

With Cleopatra and Marc Antony in Verona.

Love, laughter, and shoes –

xx Melanie.

 

 

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Be Italian: The Vatican

Bonjourno! The Hubby and I are home now in Germany, safe and sound, with a TON of pictures! I’m going to spread out my tales of Italy over several posts with fashion musings mixed in, so I hope you will enjoy!

In St. Peter's Square.

In St. Peter’s Square.

We arrived in Rome around 10 p.m., and the first impression was not great. The area where our train stopped looked sketchy;  a LOT of graffiti on buildings, dark streets, and the rain didn’t help matters, either! I would learn later that unfortunately, Rome has a lot of graffiti. However, Italians are very friendly people and many of them speak good English. Thanks to a helpful waiter in a café we stumbled into, we were pointed in the right direction and found our B & B.

A tour of the Vatican and St. Peter’s Square began our first full day. I cannot say this enough; GO TO THE VATICAN IF YOU EVER GET THE OPPORTUNITY. For one thing, you are visiting a separate state within the city of Rome ( you can buy post cards and send them from the Vatican’s post office!), and the artwork is absolutely STUNNING.  If you do visit Italy, book tours with Dark Rome. You’ll get an excellent guide, and a lot of bang for your buck.

Entrance to the Vatican.

Entrance to the Vatican.

Just one of the hundreds of frescos!

Just one of the hundreds of frescos!

My neck became sore by constantly looking up to see the genius works by Michaelangelo and Raphael.

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I cannot really fully describe what it was like to see the Sistine Chapel. Absolutely no photos were allowed, and what I’ll call “professional shush-ers” stood on the edges of the area to keep people quiet (it is considered a church, after all). But looking up and ACTUALLY SEEING “The Creation of Adam” got me emotional. Just unbelievably beautiful!

Since we had a full day of seeing sights, I kept my look comfy and light. My new tunic from American Rag (available through Macy’s), leggings from Forever 21 Plus, and comfy sneaks did the trick. I wore my new rings from A Wild Violet, an Etsy store that does custom work. Check out the Michigan midi ring!

I got the Michigan and crown ring BOTH for just $23.00! The owners often offer discount codes, so be sure to check them out!

rings wild violet

Wild V rings CU

Me outside Constantine

Gotta keep it simple for all the walking! My JustFab bag held EVERYTHING I needed for the day!

Many more adventures to come, so stay tuned!

Us in St Peters

Love, laughter, and shoes –

xx Melanie.