Never a Dull Moment

 

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I snapped this shot on the way home from Italian class

Cooking

Topics in Nutrition

We’ve started getting more adventurous in class – this is a dish made with wheat berries, carrot puree, grapefruit juice, and roasted almonds. It sounds really weird, but I spent the entire class slowly adding grapefruit juice and carrot puree and tasting to balance the acidity from the grapefruit and the sweetness of the carrot. It turned out to be really yummy and filling!

LdM Activity

Later in the week, Jordan joined me in the kitchen for a free LdM cooking activity. We made eggplant parmesan and chocolate truffles. The truffles were AMAZING and surprisingly easy to make. We made so many that we couldn’t eat them all and took them home to keep in the fridge.

Food Culture

This is my professor, Franco, and he is absolutely hilarious. He wore these sunglasses the entire class during student presentations.

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Palaces of Florence

For the rest of the semester, we would be spending the entire class time out and about in the city, desperately taking notes as our professor fired out facts to memorize.

Palazzo Vecchio

This turned into one of my favorite places/museums in Florence because it is so historically rich. I eventually wrote my final paper about the transformation of Palazzo Vecchio with a focus on the Hall of 500’s. I wish I had known what I know now when Maya came to visit because we went here and were a little lost. Something that is really simple that most people don’t know: The building was known as Palazzo de la Signoria until the Medici’s Cosimo I and Eleonora de Toledo moved to Pitti Palace and then it was renamed to Palazzo Vecchio, or old house.

Pitti Palace

The original Palazzo Pitti, built for Luca Pitti by Brunelleschi, was one of the original 7 renaissance palaces in Florence. When it was owned by Luca Pitti, it was small and regular in shape – he was exiled after staging a coup against the Medici. The palace was majorly expanded by Cosimo I de Medici after they bought it. I went back to Pitti Palace later in the semester when I could have more time.

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Corsini Palace

This is one of the only Baroque palaces in Florence and is still owned and occupied by the Corsini family. They were a noble family in Florence and produced a couple Popes. Our class got a private tour of the palace by the Countess herself. It was truly amazing… something that most people would walk by on the street and not even realize there is a palace as decadent as Pitti. It was also funny because they had so many famous pieces of art by Raffaello and she was able to go up and touch them and check the dates on the back of the paintings by lifting them off of the wall. There was one room along the river with a plain ceiling and the Countess apologized for it being so ugly…. but it was damaged in WWII when the Germans were blowing up the nearby bridge. Another cool story is that they had a painting hung up with a bullet hole in it, she said that during WWII when they were scared of getting invaded, her mom gathered all of the artwork and stacked them with this painting on top to protect them.

Favorite Restaurants

Marios

I finally dragged my roommates to Mario’s Trattoria to try their amazing chicken and ribollita. They were not disappointed and declared it the best chicken they had ever tasted. While waiting for our table we went to the market and did some shopping – we got some good deals because at this point we aren’t afraid to haggle. …..Why is Jordan in all of my pictures??

Osteria Santo Spirito

IMG_0348Since time was starting to run out, we wanted to eat out at more restaurants around Florence. Me Casey, Jordan, Rachel, and Kristen all went together. Santo Spirito seemed to be a big favorite and now I know why! It was in this cool area across the river and there are a lot of bars and people sitting outside. They are famous for their truffle and cheese gnocchi and oh my god was it good. Very inexpensive too – Jordan got a spaghetti alla chitarra that I was jealous of as well. We had a fun evening sitting outside, reminiscing about Sardinia and after dinner we sat on the ground outside Pitti Palace like we’ve done so many times during the day – but tonight we could lie down and look at all the stars.

Fun

YAB

YAB was starting to become my favorite club to finish the night at – just have to be careful about pickpockets. We got photographed here with some friends we made visiting from Aruba.

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ERASMUS Party

I was sitting at the apartment trying so hard to get my many end of term papers done – but it was made difficult by a huge party going on in the next door piazza! Finally, we walked down to take a look and they had a cool setup. Sadly I had so much work to do that I went home after a few songs.

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