Let’s take a break from Italy and look around Europe for a little bit.

The ocean is great for a lot of things. For one, there are so many activities that you can do on the water. In France, you get to enjoy these activities in multiple regions of the country. On the east side of the country, you have the Atlantic Ocean. This water is a little bit chillier, so it might be a little bit more suitable for things like surfing or deep sea fishing. You probably won’t want to do things like sunbathing or just some easy wading, especially in the northeast part of the country. If you want to do the glamorous sunbathing and beach experience, then you would definitely need to go to the south of France and hang out on the Mediterranean Sea.

Regardless of where you are and what you do, there is something that you will be able to enjoy. That thing is seafood. Because France is surrounded on two sides by water, there is an abundance of seafood that you will be able to enjoy if you take the trip.

Fruits of the sea

Signature dishes

There are plenty of different meals that you can make from the things that come from the ocean. The type of meal definitely depends on the kind of region that you are visiting. For example, in the south of France, shellfish are a big thing. So, you will probably have mussels and fries for a meal. You might also have oysters on the half shell. Another thing that is quite popular is bouillabaisse, which is a seafood stew.

Maintenance While You’re Away



Being far away from home sometimes causes some people anxiety because they get stressed out at the thought of leaving their house unguarded and unkept. This is a reasonable source of stress because everybody wants to have a clean and well-kept house to come home to after returning from a trip.

The great news is that this kind of anxiety does not have to exist anymore. There are several services that you can get to take care your house while you are gone. This post will look into some of the services that you can contact to make sure your house and property are in tidy shape for your return. Keep reading to get more information!


Lawn care

One big area of concern for many homeowners is the fear that their lawn will grow wild and untidy in their absence. This is a fair assessment because this is usually what grass and other plants are wont to do. In order to combat this anxiety, there are things that one can do to avoid an unpleasant looking lawn that is overgrown. For example, you can call a lawn care service that will make sure they schedule a visit to your house while you are gone. They will take care of your lawn and make sure it looks beautiful for when you get back to your house. They can even stop by multiple times if you will be gone for an extended period of time.

If you want to save some money, you can also try to hire local neighborhood kids to water your flowers and mow your lawn while you are away. This can sometimes be unreliable; however, the flip side is that you can pay them much less than you would professionals. This can save you a lot of money.

Tree removal

Another big thing that you can have done to your house and property while you are gone is to take care of any trees that may be endangering your house. This can depend on the season, of course. For example, if you if you live in the Midwest, then you may experience certain types of storms during the spring months (think about tornadoes). If you are gone in the spring, then you will definitely want to have any trees that are dangerously close to your house removed. Some good services include tree removal Grand Rapids. They will be helpful with helping to remove a dying tree. They even offered to trim my trees while I vacationed in Florence!


Summer in Italy



Truthfully, any time you take a trip to Italy will probably be great. There are plenty of things to to and places to go in any kind of season. You’ll have a great time, we guarantee it. However, there are some seasons that are better than others. One of those seasons is summer. This time of year is particularly nice for this charming country. There are so many activities that you can do under the warm Italian sun. Keep reading this post to find out more!

What to do

Mediterranean dreams

One of the best things that you can do during the hot summer months is to head down to the Italian riviera and enjoy the glories of the Mediterranean Sea. During the summer months, the climate is hot and dry. You’ll want to jump into the sea to cool off. There are plenty of places that you can go do this, but one of the best places is in Tuscany. This area has particularly nice beaches on which you can frolic and relax.

Southern Italy

If you really want to feel the summer heat, the best place to go is in the south of Italy. This region has some real scorchers during the summer. You’ll be able to walk around and get a great tan while enjoying some great food. A region to visit in particular is the famous area of Sicily. Here, you’ll be able to enjoy a great Sicilian pizza while soaking up all the sun rays that you could possibly ever want.

Saving for Your Trip



It would be really nice to just get up and go to Europe without worrying about the price. Of course, there are few people in the world who can actually do that. Most of us mere mortals will have to take months and maybe even years to plan ahead and save up for a kind of vacation like that.

The Difficulty of Saving

Saving for a vacation can be really difficult. One of the reasons this is tough is because there it is hard to place saving for a vacation as a priority. There are so many other immediate and more things that require saving. For example, if you have kids, you are probably saving for their college. As most of us already know, saving for a four year education at a public college will cost up to eight times as much as a vacation to Italy or another European country. Because of this, there is a lot of thought and frugal decision making that goes into saving for college.


In addition to things like college, there are also incidents that happen that require a lot of money to be spent. Accidents and emergencies can happen. As a result, you will probably need to spend time saving for a sort of emergency budget in the event that something undesirable happens. For example, in the event of a storm, you might have trees that fall on your property and block you from getting where you need to go. Even worse, you might have trees that are too close to your house that might fall on your roof. In that situation, you would probably need to spend the money to pay for a tree service Oklahoma City in order to cut down big trees. I know in the past I’ve had to spend big bucks in order to trim my trees. This can obviously take a chunk out of anybody’s budget. The worst part is that a lot of the time, you cannot plan for these kinds of things. This is where the emergency budget comes into place.

Of course, we are here to talk about ways to save for your trip to Europe. While it may be slow going, the best way to do it is to allocate a small percentage of what you are making every month and set it aside in a separate place in order to pay for your trip. There are apps that can help you do that. Good luck!

Shroud of Turin

Copy of typical catholic image of Jesus Christ


Ancient relics and superstition have gone hand in hand throughout the ages. For example, in the Middle Ages, clergymen used to tout certain skulls and bones that they would find as the remains of certain distinguished people from biblical times. For example, they would say that a skull was actually the skull of John the Baptist. Then, they would charge people money to see it, saying that if they would behold the skull, they would receive a blessing. As a result, many people would spend their hard earned money to see these kinds of relics.

We of course know now that the authenticity of these relics is rather suspicious. However, did you know that the same things might be happening today? In the city of Turin, there is a piece of cloth on display called the Shroud of Turin. This piece of fabric is said to be the cloth that was laid over Jesus’ face when he was buried. Because of this, people claim that you can actually see the outline of Jesus’ face on the cloth.

You can find this piece of sacred fabric on display in Turin. Many people will pay to see it. Do you think they are being duped?

Reasonable doubt

There is reason for incredulity. For example, there are people who claim divine intervention because they can see the outline of the Virgin Mary’s face in a french fry. Still others are convinced that they have the outline of Abe Lincoln in their grilled cheese sandwiches and that they have seen a miracle.

What do you think?

Divine influence or mere happenstance? You decide for yourself.




Visiting Italy would be incomplete without eating the marvelous food of this country. Of course, there are the sights, sounds and smells to experience as well. You’ll be able to see amazing historic monuments as well as take in the breathtaking beauty of both the Mediterranean coast and the rolling countryside of inland areas such as interior Tuscany.

Notwithstanding the visual charm, we return to the food, because it certainly deserves our attention in the conversation. There are plenty of places where we could begin in discussing Italian food. However, we will begin with what perhaps Italy is most famous for: pasta! Read on for the full scoop.

Types of pasta


This is a very popular type of pasta. It is a long stringy kind of noodle that is often eaten with sauce. This is a typically tomato based sauce. We’ve mentioned this in a previous post, but did you know that meatballs are typically served separately from spaghetti? The combination of the two is just an American invention. If you are looking for a vegetarian option that involves a meat like texture, try using eggplant instead of meat. You’ll get a great texture and a great taste!


This kind of pasta also features a long, stringy noodle. However, while spaghetti is cylindrical, fettuccine is a flat noodle. There are many ways to eat this kind of pasta, but one of the most popular ways is with alfredo. Alredo is a cream based sauce that is typically white and very heavy. Sometimes, there is also cheese involved.

Exploring the Mediterranean



We’ve been discussing Italy quite a bit in our posts as of late, but since we are in the region of Southern Europe, we figured we would take this time to talk about some of the other great places that you can visit in this area. This part of Europe, which some people refer to as the Mediterranean (because of the sea), is known for sun, water, and good times. Since most of this region borders the Mediterranean Sea, there are plenty of things to do with the water in all seasons. You’ll also find that the climate is hot, providing for lots of opportunities to wear shorts and a tee shirt. This part of Europe is a hot vacation destination for people all around the world. Below, we have listed some great port towns that are worth your while to visit if you are planning on making a trip to the Mediterranean.

Where to go


This Spanish city is bursting with life and color. In addition to a great climate and vibrant nightlife, Barcelona is home to many historically valuable monuments and a host of great architecture. A lot of buildings were designed by Gaudi, who was a famous artist. Make sure you visit the cathedral! You’ll be amazed


If you are looking to spend some great time on the beach, this French Riviera town is the place for you. A lot of people come here on high profile vacations and end up having an awesome time. Don’t miss out!

Traveling in Italy



When it comes to planning your next vacation, it’s definitely not a bad idea to take notes from other people who have had successful vacations. Some people want to go off the beaten path. That is totally fine, but some of the more popular places to visit are popular for a reason. Don’t be shy, step right up!

Italy is an incredibly popular tourist destination for several reasons. First, Italy is a charming land with breathtaking countryside. Any drive through Tuscany will leave tourists with their jaws on the floor and photographers salivating and wanting more.

If you feel like you are convinced that Italy is your next travel destination, then we have a treat in store for you. Traveling around in Italy can be difficult at times, so we’ve compiled a list of things to keep in mind as you make your way through this beautiful country. Read on down below for all of the details!


Getting around

One of the most important things that you should know is that traveling from city to city is not always easy in Italy. There are places where the infrastructure is not as strong. This makes it a little bit difficult to get around. One of the main ways of getting around is by train. You can purchase train tickets at any station in the city. They are relatively inexpensive. Another way to get around is bus. This can take a little longer but is oftentimes more reliable. Either way is definitely a better bet than flying.




Pretty much any American family can get down with the age old classic dish of spaghetti and meatballs. The thin, slurpy noodles paired with a rich tomato sauce is simply irresistible. To top it off, the juicy meatballs and parmesan cheese go a long way in helping fill you up during a nice dinner.

There are many different kinds of ways to prepare this dish. Some choose to refrain from using huge chunks of meat in favor of using ground beef for meat sauce. Within this meat sauce subset, there are also many kinds of variations. For example, some prefer to have a little bit leaner fare by substituting ground turkey or chicken in for the meat. Still others will go meatless and replace the meat with something like eggplant or cauliflower.

Although there have been many reinventions of spaghetti, none of them will ever come close to the classic. However, the classic is not what you think it is. If you venture to Italy, you’ll find that they do things a little bit differently there. Read on to find out what they’re doing!

The Truth


Many people believe that spaghetti is served with meatballs. Like we’ve hinted at before, it’s been the American way for longer than most of our grandparents can remember. However, in Italy, the spaghetti and meatballs are actually two separate dishes. Impossible! you might cry. However, it is true. The spaghetti and meatball combination have only been a thing invented in the United Staes. Crazy, huh?


Northern Italy

turin 1


If you have not traveled in Europe before, it may be a little bit overwhelming deciding where you should start. There are so many things to see and explore in Europe and it may be a little bit difficult to make a choice. However, we have a suggestion that will for sure be a hit. If you are someone who appreciates a very beautiful countryside, and Old World rustic type of feel, and incredible food and culture, then you need to make sure that you pay a visit to the northern parts of the country of Italy. There, you will find everything that you have probably ever dreamed about. The food is irresistible. The people are kind and generous. The weather is amazingly lovely. What more could you ask for? Anyway, if you want some more info on this, keep reading on down below!

Places to Visit


If you have any sort of interest in fashion, then why not travel up to one of the world headquarters of fashion? Milan is full of incredibly forward thinking artists who are constantly changing the way we look at clothes and daily life. In addition, Milan is home to a large amount of art and history. What’s not to love?


Made famous by the winter Olympics, Turin is an exquisitely beautiful city that is nestled right next to the Alps. Here, you can travel out to the mountains to do some great skiing and hiking. If you want to stay in, you can wander down the quaint little alleys that fill the city of Turin.