It’s wild to think at that this time last year, I was preparing for the big move to Rome. I was eager, anxious, terrified, excited and beyond happy, which hasn’t changed as I still tend to feel one or all of those emotions everyday. As much as I love Italy and want to live here forever and ever, it’s still a little scary residing in a foreign country so I’m grateful that I can surround myself with likeminded individuals whom I trust.
While recently perusing my iPhoto Library, I couldn’t believe how many photos I had acquired from day one–February 8, 2013,– which is just shy of a year. 2013 was the best year of my life hands down and I thought I’d share some of the shots that are near and dear to my heart, many of which depict some of the most memorable moments so far while others simultaneously serve as a nod to all the exemplary people whom I’ve met along the way. They have helped me immensely and I couldn’t have done this alone! I hope I managed to thank everyone and if there’s someone I forgot, I apologize profusely for the oversight….please know it wasn’t deliberate! In no particular order (except number one), here they are…
Mom & Dad! I love you and the highlight of my time abroad so far was your visit here in October! I can’t thank you enough for everything!
My first meal in Rome: pizza from Roscioli!
This annual chef’s congress in Milan is Italy’s top culinary event. I had the honor of attending where I saw friends and made new ones, too. What an incredible few days they were.
Snapped this after dinner one night in the Navigli with my friends Sara & Ryan. Here’s to 2014! Heart you both.
Dinner at Il Luogo di Aimo e Nadia in Milan….outstanding!
One dumpling at a time with my dumpling partner in crime, Olivia!
Met my Italian relatives for the first time and I love them all! Ciccio, Caterina, Maria and Vincenzo.
Sunday Lunch at Gina’s, to whom I’m forever thankful for everything!
Frankie, I love you when you’re not jumping on me. And I love your owners, too. I’m beyond grateful to them.
Got to witness the election of the new pope, which was truly majestic.
My ever-growing and ever-evolving love of Italian wine thanks to Gina, Hande, Katie and Sarah!
Aunt LIz & Uncle Nick, who sent me this care package! Love you both tons!
Uncle Mike…no one makes a drive to the airport quite as exciting as you! Love you & thank you!
Aunt Mary, Uncle Michael & Juliet….thank you for everything! Love you!
Giulietta! How I love this dog!
Adore this book!
A new-found appreciation of Italian craft beer thanks to Katie Parla!
Andrew & Brian, what would I do without you?! Thank you for everything! You came to rescue and I appreciate you both. We’ll always have T-Bone Station, which we so need to visit one night just for kicks.
Ristorante All’Oro!! (These are the broth-filled cappelletti…yum!)
LadyBu, in some ways you have become my home away from Rome! Love you all!
I’m only a two-hour flight away from Paris!
Claudio: thank you, thank you, thank you! (I snapped this shot near your office, so that’s the connection.)
I cannot describe the joy that car sharing in Milan has given me! (No, I don’t drive; I’m always a passenger.)
Elisa della Barba, this juice is for you!
Spectacular sunsets in Rome…..
….and in Milan!
Elisa! Thank you for everything! Only we two would leave a bakery with handfuls of over-stuffed shopping bags.
The beautiful Convento dei Neveri in Bariano; thank you Patrizia!
Fatamorgana! Need I say more?!
The best pizza in the world at La Notizia in Naples!
Cheese, I love you now more than ever!
Seeing this guy in Venice & Rome!
Suppli’, you never cease to rock my world!
Learned how to make risotto, and I’m determined to master this dish, too! I’m grateful to my instructor for more than I can ever say! A great teacher and an even better Italian wordsmith!
Pizzarium, you make my heart sing!
Nick & Alberta, I loved spending time with you!
Toni Suppa, I had so much fun being a tourist with you!
Brian & Summer – what a pleasure it was to see you here in Rome!
Elena, a great friend, who works at Contesta Rock Hair in Testaccio, where I get my hair did (by her).
Getting to sneak out of the big city to beautiful Umbria where my friend Joel lives!
Falling in love with Florence all over again!
The 160 Brioche at Pave….such a delight!
The view from Castello di Vicarello in Tuscany. Thanks for a memorable day, Aurora!
Spending the day at beautiful Lake Como!
Venice, Venice, Venice
Milan….just because I love you!
One of the best laughs I had all year….a massive wine glass during a dinner at Identita’ Golose. A fellow guest held his BlackBerry beside it for context!
Potato Pasta at Alice in Milan
Hazelnuts from Cardenale, my grandmother’s hometown. I made a hazelnut and parsley pesto!
Barnum, delicious cocktails! This shot is from my last pre-Christmas night in Rome with my friend Arlene.
The Fried Gnocci and everything else at Cesare al Casaletto!
Pasticceria De Bellis; need I say more?
The glorious Cipolla Rossa from Al Pont de Ferr
Lake Nemi, where I spent an afternoon with my Italian cousins!
The Roma Farmer’s Market in its original location, a former slaughterhouse in Testaccio.
Monti, how I love you! And so does my friend Alyssa!
I never thought it was possible to hate the rain as much as I do here; the rain in Rome is terrible. It’s just paralyzing and you really can’t get anything done once the skies open up.