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Saturday, April 4, 2009

Italy Day 7

On this particular morning we all woke up to the scent of hash browns. Ryan had gotten up early and fixed us all breakfast! How did I get so lucky?
My mouth is watering just looking at this picture.
Since this is a big year with my mom turning 60, she wanted to do something just as big to celebrate it. Like.... take a trip to Italy! Her birthday is in the summer so we decided to have her "unbirthday" today! Happy Unbirthday Mom!!! We spent the whole day checking out Florence, or as the Italian's call it, Firenze.
This is the Ponte Vecchio, the oldest surviving bridge in the city. It was built in 1345 and there is a corridor that was built above the main walk way for the Medici family to move about their residences without having to mix with the public.
The Loggia dei Lanzi holds famous replica statues that are from all over Italy.
Fontana di Nettuno, fountain of the Roman sea god surrounded by water nymphs commemorates Tuscan naval victories.
Duomo and Baptistery
The dome that we would later climb. You can see the peek where we stood on top of the dome.
I had to get a picture of this car with Ryan standing next to it. It was crazy how small ALL their cars were there. There's no way Ryan could fit! Also the legal driving age there is 14... no wonder it is so scary to drive on the roads.
Next, we headed to the Galleria dell' Accademia to see the famous Michelangelo's David Statue. We couldn't take any pictures inside and the building wasn't all that great looking. It was covered in graffiti. I guess it looked tasty to Emily! Ha!
Getting excited to see David. The statue was huge! I had no idea the scale of David would be that big, 17 feet, but the whole sculpture had to have been bigger. He was made out of one single piece of marble. It was hard to believe. That was pretty much all that was in the Accademia.
Back: Susan, Emily & Harlan
Front: Sally and Mary
Today was St. Patrick's Day. We tried to eat at an Irish Pub in honor of the day but unfortunately they didn't have food.
So we ate Mexican instead! It was so nice out that day so we got to eat outside for the first time.
This is the Santa Croce - Gothic Church that holds a LOT of tombs, one of which is Michelangelo's. The pic is below.
They actually still have church services and weddings here.
I couldn't imagine getting married and walking down the isle over all these tombs!
The outside courtyard where there are more tombs! I would have just called this place a cemetery but that's just me.
After that we decided it was high time for some more gelato!
Sis-in-law, Sally, Mom & Sis-in-law, Emily
Once we had our fill of gelato we decided we were up to climbing the dome. This is the inside of it.
Pictures of Florence from the top of the dome.
Can you tell it was St. Patty's day?
Harlan, Sally and Mom (Mary)
This was another victory for my mom to climb all the way up to the top. I really thought she might pass out and we would have to carry her, which would have made me pass out. Then we would have been in a whole heap of trouble! I think Harlan described her breathing as she was climbing the stars like Darth Vader's. lol This was her unbirthday so she pushed through and made it!
Mom and daughter
Who could blame her when these were the stair we were climbing? Claustrophobic anyone? Poor Ryan.
At one point there is a section where people are coming up and going down together. Can you imagine trying to move over for people to get by?
We topped off the day by visiting Florence's market. Let's just say we got our shop on. I think Susan walked away with no less then 20 scarves?? I did walk away with a few myself and a little jewelry.
That night we stopped by the Coop again and cooked dinner for ourselves. We had a great day!

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