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Hey, I can’t write too much cus I need to go to bed early! Waking up really early to catch a 6:3oam train to Sorrento! We’re staying in a hostel there and planning on seeing Pompei, Napals (maybe), Capri and exploring Sorrento. We’ll have almost all day Friday and Saturday! Should be fun! It’s been crazy trying to plan it! I’m excited for all of the photo-ops there! Well, here are some pics from the last couple days! They are from a restaurant, the Roman Forum, and Musei Capitoline (we got in later in the day!).

Enjoy! Much love! Miss you all!

This post is entirely dedicated to pictures taken at and around the Colosseum…the excursion we went on yesterday! Today, we tried to go to Museum Capitoline, but….bum bum bum….it was closed. Why? Because Obama is in Rome. So we went to the Roman Forum again, and half-way through got kicked out….because again, they were closing it down for Obama. I’ll spare you the rant! lol…I think we might go back tonite, because if not we will probably not get a chance to explore this museum, one of the world’s oldest, with some of the most historical statues and artifacts, such as the famed Roman she-wolf statue, the “Capitoline Wolf”, which supposedly dates back to the 5th century BC.

Anyways, the Colosseum was amazing….scorching hot…but amazing.  Less of it is intact than I anticipated, but it was so cool to see famous stadium and to observe the comparisons between it and modern day stadiums.  Did you know that each arch on the lower level has a Roman numeral written above it, so that the people knew where their seats were? And there are engravings along the lower level (“the choice seats”) that indicate which famous person sat in that section. The most interesting thing that I learned was that they have found plants in the Colosseum that are not found in any other part of Italy! They are thought to have been brought in accidentally by all of the exotic animals and people that were brought in from all parts of the world to fight and entertain the Romans. So interesting. I still have a hard time fully comprehending the age and significance of the structure, having never been to many buildings more than a couple centuries old.  I wished the whole time that my brother, Max, would have been there with me, to give me more of a history lesson along the way.  Mathematically, we learned about the architecture and shape of the structure, and how it can’t be discerned if it is an oval or an ellipse.  If it is an oval, they used a method other than the ones that we knew were familiar at the time.  And if it is an ellipse, we don’t know how they had even rows of seats around the whole inside, as there is no such thing as perfectly concentric ellipses. Interesting, yes?

Anyways, hope you enjoy the pictures! Much love to you all! 🙂

Somewhere in the midst of completing over 50 lengthy and time consuming homework problems, we did manage to have some fun in Rome the first week! We went out to Piazza di Santa Maria again on Friday night, and it was so pretty there!  We didn’t stay very long, but we tried to fit in with the locals! We got gelato again (SO good…hazelnut and cafe are my favorite flavors). Then we each got a drink (sorry mom and dad, but it’s legal here and we were safe!).  All I got was a little bit of sangria, cus it was the cheapest and I have never tried it…but I like wine so it was a good choice.  Then we walked to sit on these steps that we figured out is the “cool” thing to do….we sat for a bit…but then decided they weren’t as exciting as they look! It was not too eventful, but fun to see Rome in it’s glory….at night, all lit up and much cooler than the blistering daytime sun.

Last night we had hamburgers for the 4th of July at one of the other students’ apartment…and they were good! I have to admit, as much as I love Italian food, I was really missing food from back home….burgers, fries, normal sandwiches. eggs and bacon, tacos, burritos, chicken..etc. Seriously, everywhere you go, you can get coffee drinks, pastries, pizza, pasta or some grilled veggies (eggplant and zucchini usually), and that’s where the selection ends.  One of the boy’s arpartments cooked, and I must say, it was SO good! For a bunch of boys they were quite the chefs…we had grilled onions, grilled bell peppers, grilled eggplant, lettuce, tomato and ketchup to put on the burgers, which were garlic-y, juicy and yummy! They even made fries! They had tons of drinks too, and all we had to chip in was 3 euro each!

I went home early. because I needed to finish my homework and get in bed so that I could get up for church at the Basillica di Santa Maria, one of the oldest Catholic churches in Rome, dating back to 4th century AD.  Unfortunately, everyone I was planning on going with stayed out too late and slept in! 😦  I was still up at 7 and walked to the tram at 8:30 to see if the other people would show up, and when they didn’t, I decided to go back and wait til the next service at the church right down the street (walking distance).  I didn’t want to travel that far alone! On the way back, one of the coffee bar owners called me into his shop and gave me a free cappuccino! He was such a nice old man! He just wanted to talk for a bit, so it was a good opportunity for me to practice my Italian…which isn’t very good! He spoke little English, but kept offering me fresh baked croissants and telling me to be safe and trying to teach me a little Italian.  It was a fun experience! And the coffee was sooo good! I told him I worked for a bit as a barista at home, and he was overjoyed! Lol. When walking back, I saw the sign at the local church read 8:00 and 10:30, so I decided I would go back for the 10;30 mass, but when I got there, it was locked up! Maybe the Italian words surrounding the sign didn’t mean there would be mass at that time…I was bummed, but I will try again as soon as possible!

When I got back, my roommate, Laura, was awake (everyone else was still sleeping), so we decided to go to the famous flea market, Porta Portise.  It was huge! I didn’t find anything I like, but it was cool to walk around! Then we got some lunch at a pizza place…it was delicious. I got one with sausage on it….which is rare, most pizza places only offer cheese, olive, and some selections with tons of veggies. Laura got one with thin slices of potato and rosemary on top, I tried it and it was really good! The pizza here is not much like pizza at home…no sauce, no meat usually, and a wider variety of cheese (I think).

So now, I’m just relaxing cus my homework is finally done and I’m so tired from waking up at 7…but it feels good to just sit and relax without any work hanging over my head.  Need to get rest anyways for a long week of class and excursions every day!So here are some pics from today and Piazza di Santa Maria! Enjoy! Hope you’re all doing well! Miss you all! Much love..xoxo

So last night, I was practically falling asleep while posting the pictures so I didn’t write a very useful blog update! And I didn’t even include half of the pictures I wanted to! (We went to a lot of places that day….we just walked through the center of Rome and saw many beautiful things). Anyways, these last couple days have been pretty unexciting since we have had a lot of homework assigned…yesterday that is practically all we did! We have been constructing so many shapes but the only thing we can use is a straightedge and a compass, the way Plato decreed that all legitimate geometrical constructions should be made. That means no measuring. So if you want to draw a square, you have to the construction to get a line of equal length 4 times, and do the construction to make them perpendicular to each other 4 times. We’re using a program called Geometer’s Sketchpad, and even though we have the help of a computer…it’s not any easier than how the ancient Greeks and Romans did their math.  Here’s an example of one of the problems we have done! (how to find the “orthocenter” of any triangle. i had to carefully construct each and every one of those light gray circles and lines just to find that middle point, which is the intersection of perpendicular lines from each vertex to its opposite side.)Picture 1

Still have a lot more to work on but it’s not due til Sunday night at least. From now on we’ll have a lot less homework.  Today we had class at the American University in Rome, where we learned about the geometry used in architecture here and how certain patterns and shapes are pleasing to the eye, such as the Golden Ratio.  “Mathematical Beauty”.  Then we had a small break and had a class to learn some Italian.  It’s a good thing, because I feel like such a tourist as I give people blank stares when they ask me questions when I order food or coffee! Ha!

I have had some fun here though! On Tuesday night, me and my roommates made our way to Piazza di Santa Maria….a square in Trastevere (our section of Rome) which has an amazing night life!  We went to a restaurant and had a fun experience ordering food (and some vino 😉 ).  Tip: if you don’t want to pay 4 euros for bread, tell them you don’t want it! Because they will just bring it! Ha.  Then we got gelato and walked around (Nutella Gelato = amazing!!).  It was late at night, but the weather was perfect and there were so many people, especially college students, you would think that Italians never sleep! (But then you are reminded when you try to get some food at 2pm and all the shops are closed! Siesta!).  After that, we walked by the Tiber River under the bridge, where there were tons of shops set up and little areas to lounge, it was a beautiful sight! Everything was lit up and so pretty! I wish I had pictures of that, but I didn’t bring the camera (it’s my moms and I didn’t wanna risk bringing it out at night!)

Anyways, tonight we are all working on homework, but going to get some dinner soon at “Pizza Boom!”…lol.  It’s a little pizza place next door to our apartment and it looks really good! I just like saying the name though…extra emphasis on the BOOM! Ha.

Well here are the pictures from the other day that I didn’t post! Enjoy! Miss you all! Family, friends and Kevin.

Ciao! Buona serata!

I’m too tired to write a lot, but I wanted to share some new pics! Everything here has been great! Exhuasting, but great! All I have been doing today is working on homework though…not fun! Class tomorrow, and possibly breach on friday if the weather is nice! It rained today! Crazy! Well, hope you enjoy these pics! I’m loving Rome!! 🙂

10:00am

So I woke up really early today (before 7) and I couldn’t go back to sleep, probably because of the long nap I took. We don’t start class today until 2:30 because we’re all jet lagged, and it’s more of a tour of Rome than class. So I got ready, went downstairs from my apartment and got a cappuccino at the cafe directly next door…it was SO good! Now I’m tired again, and waiting for all my roommates to be ready so that we can go to the outdoor market and get some groceries!

Anyways, last night’s welcome dinner was AMAZING. It was exactly how you would imagine eating at a nice restuarant in Italy. Ivy and flowers crawling up the brick walls, waiters with scarfs around their necks, chefs with the large white hats peaking out the doors, and a cool breeze to make the warm summer night more bearable. But the best part was the FOOD! We started with bread (no butter…it’s not how they do it here) and a platter with ricotta cheese and salami and other goodies. Then pizza after pizza kept coming out of the kitchen for us to try. And they were DELICIOUS! Overall, I felt like I was in a dream….it was that great.

1:40pm

So I got back like 40 minutes ago from going grocery shopping (got fresh bread, salami, ricotta cheese, pesto, fruit, and espresso).  I already tried some of it and it’s all sooo good.  And not even very expensive! Now we’re all waiting to start our welcoming tour of Rome at 2:30…I hope I don’t fall asleep! I’m really tired already…the long flight and time change definitely messed with my sleeping/health habits. Hopefully I’ll get a lot of sleep tonite so that tomorrow I feel normal again. Anyways, here are some pictures that I took at dinner and on the way to dinner! Enjoy! Ciao!

here are just a few photos of the trip so far! the view of the buildings is what i can see from my bedroom window! 🙂

more later! gotta go to dinner! 🙂 yumm can’t wait!

eurosjust thought i would share this picture of the euros i just got from the bank! i think they are so pretty! expensive…but pretty! ahh i’m so nervous! i’ll be packing and preparing today, so i can enjoy my last day tomorrow with my family and kevin. please pray for me! love you all!

First of all, Happy Father’s Day!!  Love my dad and my grandad and couldn’t be more thankful for them 🙂

Just logged on here to say that there is only one more week til I’ll be in Rome! I’m leaving Saturday morning and will be there on Sunday morning! Crazy! I’m really nervous and I just finished UNpacking from college, and the thought of packing back up again is giving me a headache! I will most definitely forget many important things…I’m counting on it.  I’m also gonna miss Kevin and my family A LOT so please keep me in your prayers! Pray that God calms my nerves and allows to me to enjoy Italy, being fully present there, mind and body.  I pray that He also uses me there, showing me what He wants me to see, and teaching me what He wants me to learn. Even though I’ll be studying math, I know that everywhere I go is an opportunity to learn about God’s love and grace, and show it to others.

Well, that is all that’s on my mind right now. Hope you are having a beautiful Sunday! ❤86440001