As I mentioned earlier, my little sister Victoria visited over Christmas break. On January 2 we took a day trip to Lucerne, Switzerland. I’ve always dreamed of going to Switzerland (and for some reason always accounted it my favorite country); that area of Europe turned out just as beautiful as I’d imagined. First we visited Lucerne’s Lion Monument. I’m usually unmoved by such things, but the lion’s anguish while still clutching onto his country is amazing. The monument is unlike anything I’ve seen, carved into a huge stone in front of a man-made pond Can I have one of these tacked onto my house? I’ve seen buildings like this all over Europe, and they still amaze me. I’m always surprised to run into artwork like this on some nondescript winding street. I love the colors of this cathedral.  I used the word “cute” far too many times while in there.…

I have been very, very bad at running In the Wabe for the last few months. This blog is photo-based and I’m just exasperated with my camera! Hopefully when I get a better lens I’ll be more inspired to post here, but I feel I’ve hit a wall. Things have also been really busy! We haven’t taken any trips since our vacation to Disney World but are trying to plan something now. I did spend a week in Venice (commuting 3-4 hours every day) for a literature class called Expatriate Writers in Venice. After visiting Venice so much I was beginning to tire of it, but this trip has renewed my love for the city! It was nice getting to explore more suburban areas and studying work inspired by the city. I was a bit shy with my camera, which I’m regretting now. This is my class! A few of…

Apologies for my month of absence. I know that’s been happening a lot lately, but I haven’t cooked many things I’ve really enjoyed. I hate when a blog I like recommends bad recipes just because they took nice photos of it, so I only post things I absolutely love! I’ve been very frustrated with my camera’s lens lately, so I haven’t even been taking many photos of the recipes I do enjoy.

Joseph and I just returned from a week to Orlando, where we also planned a long layover in New York City. It was a wonderful trip, despite the 24 hour journey there and then another 28 hours on the way home! Neither of us had been to the US in a year and a half, so it was wonderful to feel a bit at home again. I’d forgotten how nice Americans are! I can’t believe people will move out of your way when you’re trying to get through, apologize for bumping into you, and smile when you cross them on the street. I really miss that living here.
We visited all four Walk Disney World parks, the two Universal Studios parks, and Busch Gardens (in Tampa). It is the perfect time of year–we hardly had to wait in line at all! The only time we had to use our Fastpasses at Disney World was for the Toy Story Mania ride, which had a three hour wait since it only just opened.

We got a wonderful flight, hotel, and rental car package through Expendia, so we were able to stay in the beautiful Peabody Orlando! It is a fantastic hotel, and we did get to see the famous ducks. My photo kind of looks like an illustration, doesn’t it?

Of course we went to Magic Kingdom our first day. I thought it would be a bit kitschy, but it wasn’t at all! I was also surprised by the number of single couples there–it seemed like they were all older couples or couple our age (many of who were on their honeymoons).

Cinderalla’s castle was still beautiful, even after I’ve seen real castles, including the one it’s modeled after!

Main Street, USA is pretty much my ideal town!

We had breakfast at the adorable Main Street Bakery. I had a very good cinnamon roll–I liked it much more than the Cinnabon one I had at Universal Studios later in the week.

Joseph on the Magic Carpet ride.

Sorry for my absence–my internet was down at home for a few weeks. Shortly before I left I gave In the Wabe a bit of a facelift. What do you think?

One of my best friends Aly recently visited with her sister Maddy and we had a blast traveling around together. Aly & I have been friends since third grade but hadn’t seen each other in over a year. She and Maddy are both over six foot and play volleyball at Trinity University in San Antonio.

They spent a few days in Venice, and I picked them up at the train station there. We spent three days around the area before I sent them off to Verona and then Innsbruck, Austria. Then we met up in Milan and they headed to Monaco alone before leaving from Venice.

We picnicked at Lake Barcis, which I posted about a couple months ago–swiss cheese, mortadella, salami, and cantaloupe.

Maddy and Aly.

Aly’s gelato at one of my favorite gelaterias. Hers was vanilla cream ice cream, whipped cream, fruit, nuts, and chocolate sauce.

One day we headed to nearby town of Sacile. I’d never been but a lot of Americans I know live there. It is such a cute and picturesque little town and even has a river running through it!

Maddy and Aly. Aly was standing a step above her in the photo.

My friend and sort-of-cousin is making her way around Europe and visited me for a week. We became friends one summer before we realized we share a cousin. I hadn’t seen her in three or four years be we got along very well while she was here! Her first day here we went to Venice. Ellen’s photo Later in the week I took her to Verona, which is only about two hours away by train. I had been to Verona twice, but each time was on a tour so that I’d only spent a couple hours in the city alone. This day we were there for six and a half hours and really got to sight-see! The Verona Arena, a Roman amphitheater.  In the summer the arena holds operas!  We saw La Boheme a couple years ago and are planning on going back in August, though we haven’t decided yet which…