Monday, December 30, 2013

Day 19: The Cinque Terre

The Cinque Terre consists of five coastline fishing towns: Vernazza, Corniglia, Riomaggiore, Manarola, and Montorosso al Mare--all relatively small in size and the number of it's inhabitants.  Brightly painted homes are pressed together and stacked upon one another, clothing lines are strung from home-to-home, boats rest on the calm water, and locals and tourists alike take turns jumping into the pristine crystal blue sea that is so clear, it's as if it were illuminated from below.

As we take a dip in the refreshing and cool embrace of the ocean's touch, Il Gigante, Montorosso Al Mare's native Giant looms over us. A friendly giant, he holds the town together as he watches the frolicking and commotion in the water and on the beach below him.
I'm wearing the "ginger maillot" one piece from Anthropologie.

Here are some photos from my Instagram. I couldn't manage to get any post-worthy photos on my main camera (although my friend did manage to get a few shots of some tall, dark, and handsome, speedo-clad Italians, but you wouldn't want to see that now would you? ;-)
Montorosso Al Mare had to be my favorite town of the five, only because it had the most beach space, shops, and it's very own giant! However, the other towns also had beautiful hiking trails with amazing ocean views that we didn't get to experience because we were limited on time. I know the next time I go back that is definitely on my to-do list!

Getting There: Getting to the Cinque Terre is fairly simple as you can take a train to La Spezia, which then takes you directly to the five towns.
Getting Around: There's a train pass called the "Cinque Terre Card" that cost us about 7 euros and will take you from town to town. Each town is about 5 minutes apart by train. However the trains were so packed full, no conductor came around to even check our tickets! You can also hike from town to town along the beautiful coastline trails, which will take you a few hours. If you have the time, I'd recommend this venture as the views looked beautiful!

Monday, December 9, 2013

Above All You Wear, Wear Love

 love playing dress up, but I know there's one thing I wear that matters more than any piece of cloth I own or will ever own, and that one thing is Love.
A very wise man once said, "No matter what I say, what I believe, and what I do, I’m bankrupt without love." And he was right. Without love we are nothing. You wouldn't be here without love. You are love. You were made by love, and it is by love that you continue to exist.
Love is what inspires us, motivates us, changes, and transforms us. It is the catalyst of growth--even on a cellular level this is shown to be true, as neurons will undergo mitosis (multiply and grow) in an environment of compassion. It's living a life of love that promotes brain cell growth, birth, and regeneration!
It's also love that makes us happy and brings joy to our life. I'm not just talking about romantic love either. I'm talking about compassion. When we say or do something kind for someone else a part of our body called the vagus nerve is stimulated and promotes all kinds of feel-good mushy-gushy happy feelings inside. We are more creative when we are loving towards others. It would appear that every aspect of our lives improves when we strive to live a life of LOVE.
My encouragement to you today is to show someone a little love. It could be a stranger who you give a compliment to, it could be a lonely passerby who you warm up with your loving smile, it could be a friend who needs a word of encouragement from you or simply a shoulder to cry on. Whoever or whatever your act of love may be, by sowing seeds of love you'll be reaping a harvest of love that will just come rushing back to you tenfold. Make someone's day by living in love and I promise your day will be made in return! ;-)
Hope you LOVED this post and I hope my words inspired you to shower a little love on the world today! ;-) 
I love you all very much! Muah!

“Above all, love each other deeply” 1 Peter 4:8 

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