LOST IN THE BOBOLI.

All too often I find myself thinking of Italy. Probably every day. Okay, every second. But it really is hard not to. Especially when you order wild mushroom ravioli at Circa and it tastes as if they flew it in from a cafe in Florence minutes before you arrived. Yumm. I could go on and on about everything that is amazingly Italian but I think these photos from the Boboli Gardens in Florence say a lot. The architecture, history, and natural beauty all meld together into a place where time magically disappears.

And that is just what happened on this lovely day. The closing announcements sounded and Zuzanna and I found ourselves sprinting for the nearest exit. The nearest exit of course happened to be on the opposite side of the entrance, 2 miles away from the city center. It was a nice, long walk home. The memory will forever bring a smile to my face.

TROPICAL DAYDREAMS.

One of my favorite places in the world (so far!) is Bermuda. It will probably always have a special place in my heart because I was introduced to this amazing island at such a young age and have visited again and again. I love its British roots and real sense of community. Fun fact! You can’t live in Bermuda unless you are an island native or marry a Bermudian. This makes me sad. But it’s probably best I keep it as a favorite getaway instead.

These photos were taken on my most recent trip in 2009, soon after returning home from Italy. At the time I don’t think I fully appreciated this trip because I was still recovering from study abroad withdrawal, but looking through these photos now gives me only sweet memories and a longing to go back. With summer growing nearer and nearer each day, I can’t help but daydream about tropical places and endless summer days.

LONDON DAFFODILS.

The parks of London are just one of those things you have to see for yourself. (Central Park what?!) I wish I could see them transform through every season, but when I was visiting it was about this time of year and there were daffodils everywhere. Actually, they were all over the city. Because London’s spring weather can be cold and dreary, I like to think that the daffodils were planted as a way to cheer everyone up.

Happy little golden faces smiling up at you as you walk by.

HHI.

Right now in DC, the weather is a chilly 40 something degrees with rain in the forecast for the next two days. Ick. What happened to spring? These photos of the beach from Hilton Head Island make me dread this weather even more. Christine and I managed to get down to the beach, whether by bike or car, every day of my trip. HHI has the flattest beaches I have ever seen, which makes them so great for riding bikes. In fact, the whole island is great for riding bikes with so many bike trails and lots of great scenery. An island full of bikes. And dogs. And old people. And beautiful, beautiful beaches.

WEST PALM BEACH.

This time last year, I hit the road with a good friend and we headed south in search of some sunshine after barely surviving the snowpocalypse of 2010.  West Palm Beach was the perfect remedy for a little spring fever. Okay, a lot of spring fever. I had never visited WPB (or Palm Beach) before, but I think I get the hype now. Especially in the cooler months when there is zero humidity. We spent our days admiring the most beautiful water I have ever seen in Florida, feasting on seafood, champange, and fresh squeezed orange juice, experiencing all that is polo, and hitting up CityPlace for a little spring shopping.

There hasn’t been nearly as much snow as last year, but I never seem to escape March without catching some sort of spring fever. So in one week I’ll be heading down to Hilton Head Island, South Carolina to get a taste of the island life. Looking forward to picnics on the beach, bike rides and kayaking, and gorgeous sunsets. Also making a pit stop in Charleston, which I already have sweet, sweet memories from.

JE T’AIME.

Two years ago today, I spent the loveliest of days in Paris, France–running through the streets, stopping for tea at Laduree, watching the sun set over the city from the Eiffel Tower, dining on fondue and flourless chocolate cake and delicious red wine.  I’m sure it will be one of the best Valentine’s Day I ever have because 1. it was in Paris, and 2. it was celebrated with a best friend. Oh, and 3. the night ended with Nutella sandwiches.

And the second best Valentine’s Day? The year I got Free Willy on VHS.