Summer Vacation 2017: Italy

We had a lovely two-week summer vacation this year to visit both of our families. The Stucki family vacation took us to Italy! This was our first time in Italy and we were so excited to be able to go.

Our first stop in Italy was Rome. While there we saw most of the major “tourist” sights: the Colosseaum, the Trevi fountain, the Roman Forum, and (the exterior of) the Pantheon. Probably my favorite place to visit in Rome was the Sistine Chapel to see Michaelangelo’s famous “The Creation of Adam” painting. While the Vatican museum (where the Sistine Chapel is) was extremely crowded, seeing the painting made it all worth it!

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Hours after we had arrived in Rome. We were extremely sleep deprived and jet lagged, but we changed our clothes and joined the family for dinner and a walk past the Trevi fountain that night.

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Bradford and I with Spencer (Bradford’s brother) walking the street of Rome. We were thrilled to spend time with Bradford’s siblings since we all live far away from each other. Kailen (Bradford’s sister) is finishing college in Utah. Spencer just moved to Philadelphia for his new job at Vanguard. And, of course, we live in Virginia.

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Dinner at a cafe on a tiny street in Rome. I remember our waiter that night making us laugh a lot with his fantastic sense of humor and the way he invited people off the street to eat at his cafe.

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To talk or to kiss. That is the question. 🙂

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The amazing ceiling of the Sistine Chapel.

After Rome, our next stop was Naples. The whole time I wanted to burst out singing “That’s Amore” by Dean Martin. “When the moon hits your eye like a big pizza pie that’s amore! …But you see back in old Napoli that’s amore!” So perfect.

The highlight of the Naples stop was hands down the pizza we ate at a place called L’Antica Pizzaria da Michele. AMAZING!

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We had just finished walking three miles to get to this place and we had to wait in a 30-minute line to be seated. Each person got their own flat crust pizza and we were in heaven! This was the best meal we ate in Italy.

After Naples we stopped in Pompeii, the city famous for being destroyed (and preserved) by the eruption of Mt. Vesuvius.

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Our re-enactment of the day Mt. Vesuvius erupted.

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Apparently, giant lemons grow in this part of the world!

Our last stop was Praiano, Italy, a city off the Amalfi coast. Praiano is both a mountainous and coastal town where we slowed down and relaxed the last couple days of the trip. Bradford says this was his favorite part of the trip. For a busy PhD student, time to sit and read a book for fun is heaven!

I enjoyed a sea kayaking excursion with my father-in-law, sister-in-law, and her boyfriend (now fiancé). I fell IN LOVE with kayaking and got to try snorkeling for the first time.

We bought food from a local grocery store that was no bigger than 1000 square feet. We had  family game nights most night while in Praiano. It was a great way to end our trip with the Stucki family.

The last day we drove back to Rome from which we boarded out planes. If we ever go back to Italy we will for sure stop in Naples if pizza again and try to stay in the less tourist parts of Rome.

We want to offer a huge thanks to Dave and Collette (our mama and papa Stucki) for taking us to Italy and making the experience possible. It was a dream come true!

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