Apr 24, 2012

Let me first say....

.....that this shall NOT become a pregnancy/baby blog....but having that said, it would be clearly impossible for "an-everyday-life-kind-of-blogger" to avoid mentioning anything about it. What I will do for sure though, is leave our baby and Chris's daddy role out of it and just keep the unavoidable pregnancy stuff about me, when and if I feel like sharing something.

Now, here are some funny things about (me) being pregnant so far.....
- One of the first comments I received when I told, well let's call him or her "Someone" I was pregnant was "Ah yes! I saw your face was getting really round!"...the good news is that the first words here were "Congratulations!! That is great news!" which made the fat-face comment feel much milder to an otherwise pretty overly sensitive pregnant lady ;))
- Being pregnant, I have completely lost my mouth filter. It's like a curse!! I am just blurting out whatever comes to my mind! Recently, this has been happening a lot at work which is absolutely frightening! Well......I don't know about your jobs, but mine require.....let's say a certain level of politics, so you might be able to imagine this "little problem of mine" and the situations it might get me into.
Me with a 9 month sized belly in the store "A pea in the pod"
- Did you know that there are maternity wear shops where you can try on your new stretch clothing with a "strap-on-belly"? A really really hilarious and surreal experience (not to mention a super clever idea!)!! If you're in the US, please go find the store called "A pea in the pod". Amazing assortment and service!
- I am still running....if it can be called running ;) You see my time on a standard run of 5 km's has significantly increased  (probably in the same pace as I'm gaining weight)! Normally, on flat grounds, I run 5km's on 26-28 minutes. Now, it's more like 35. I already feel like a buffalo!
- I am falling asleep uncontrollably these days....anywhere and at any time! I wish I could add "shamelessly" but that would be a lie! It is really embarrassing.
- When we were in the US, we went to an Air show with lots of planes (clearly not my hobby but a gift to Chris from me ;)) and guess what? When the Blue Angel jets flew by, I was so moved (!!) by how impressive it all seemed that it made me cry!!! Ha ha haaaaa! Can you imagine the hormones it must require to make someone like me start crying by an airplane?! Looking backwards, quite a hilarious moment.

More to come.....I'm (unfortunately) pretty sure ;))


Apr 17, 2012

Une petite update

Currently, I'm........
Happy about: So many things.....but the most obvious one, standing out of the crowd if you will, is being (14 week's) pregnant (and finally starting to feel better!! Honestly, the first trimester was not entirely painless due to all the (morning)sickness). 
Disappointed about: Frankly speaking, nothing important.

Thinking about: The future...a lot! Which I think is normal considering the life transition that we are going through! All fantastic stuff though.
Listening to: Especially these tracks:

Worrying about: If the flight companies will allow me to fly at the end of July when we plan to go to Sweden for 2 weeks of holiday......and the fact that if the answer is "No!", we will have to go by train =o/
Looking forward to: Going to a wedding in Lucerne this weekend! I love weddings as they're always so filled of happy people and hopes for the future =) Am also really looking forward to all the wonderful visits we will have this spring and summer!!
Watching: I've started to watch ABC's "Once upon a time". It was not a "love at first sight kind of thing"....but it grew on me quickly and now I can't wait for the next episode!!
Wondering: If I'm the only one playing around in their heads with musical lyrics? I recently destroyed Coldplay's "Paradise", a song that I love, doing exactly that. Now all I hear is "Parrot, parrot, parrot eyes" (sorry, but this curse was just too heavy for me to carry on my own ;)).
Planning: How to fix up and decorate our balcony for spring! So far, we haven't had time nor the weather for such things and I am really looking forward to start BBQ season out there. Spring, bring it ON!!
Feeling: Really good, happy and excited about the future, but on the downside, more tired than under "normal" circumstances ;))
Inspired by: People who can manage it all...and there seem to be many out there. When I say "manage it all", I mean people who can juggle a career, family life, a healthy lifestyle including regular fitness activities AND healthy foods and on top of this, maintain their beloved friendships. Now if that's not inspiring, I don't know what is.
One of the many beautiful views during this evenings run...
Thankful for: Having such amazing friends and family (extended family included!!!) who are always so supportive and loving!! Am also truly thankful for having found a great friend here in the area (actually, she's even my next door office colleague =))! Without her, my days would not be even a tenth as fun as they currently are!
Wanting: Spring to really kick off properly!! It was well on it's way and then came the snow.....such a sneaky and unexpected visit ;)) I want picnics, BBQ's, walks in nature and fun in the sun!! Today the sun was finally shining again, making me enjoy this evenings run more than normally. 


Apr 14, 2012

It's raining....it's pouring.....

I am in Sweden since yesterday evening, visiting a friend of mine and her two children.
It's never easy to explain how we know each other and how come I love these children so much. They are the niece and nephew of my ex and she, my friend, is the ex of my ex's brother. See? Ha ha! Not so easy ;)) Anyway, I've known these children their whole life. Now they are 9 and 7.5. They are as close as I ever got to having my own kids and every time I see the three of them, it's the best time!!

Yesterday evening, Nelly (the daughter) and I planned that this morning, we were gonna get up early and go for a run together. She was going to join me for the first lap (2.5) km's and then play games in the car while I finish the run. She even took out her jogging shoes to ensure they really fit and we were both quite excited about this adventure.

This morning, I woke up from a noise against the roof. Going down the stairs, I see it! The awful sight of SNOW and heavy rain falling down in a wet mixture and the wind was tossing it against the house, making that horrible and loud noise......

Needless to say, our plans have changed. Also the ones I had with Enzo (the son) to play some football on the lawn..... Now the plans spell: Candy and potentially a movie ;))


Apr 13, 2012

Apr 11, 2012

When you wish upon a star.....

It's funny......one day you're sitting at home, almost feeling a bit sorry for yourself that you never get to see your friends and family anymore and before you know it, your weeks and weekends are booked until beginning of July with exactly that!

What happened?? Obviously, all really really great stuff and my certain outtake from this is that, believe it or not, wishes do come true ;))


Apr 9, 2012

Florida: The shopping

Picking out my favorite pieces from all the shopping done during the Florida road trip was hard, but at least easier than writing a post about the trip itself!
When it comes to the shopping, I can show you most of it in visuals ;))

There is great shopping all over Florida, but one thing that I will say is if you're close to Fort Lauderdale or Miami and you like shopping - DO NOT MISS SAWGRASS MILLS!! Here you can get very very lucky (like I did with a Last Call sales at Nieman Marcus!! ;))).

Here below, some of my favorites:

From left to right:
1. Ballerina's from Elie Tahari, lovely classical wedge heels from Marc Jacobs and gold sandals from Seychelles footwear.
2. I fell in love with this really cute tunica from Ella Moss!
3. A gorgeous blouse from Pippa that I found at Bloomingdales.
4. A casual, striped sweater from Michael Kors, bought at Nordstroms.
5. White, banded, cropped sweatpants from Abercrombie and Fitch.
6. A protective case/bag for my Macbook from Marc by Marc Jacobs, shopped at Bloomingdales.
5. A floral printed blouse from Forever 21.
6. Perfectly fitted camis/tanks from Press that I loved so much that I bought it in 3 colors (white, powder and khaki). Happily found at Nordstroms.
7. Striped, knitted sweater from Ralph Lauren.
8. A cute camisole/nightie from Honeydew.
9. Jeans from Hudson. Soooooo comfy and great fit!
10. A cami/tank with Mickey Mouse in sequins, bought at Disney world (of course ;))
11. A lovely netted sweater from Vintage Havana.
12. A long t-shirt from Marc by Marc Jacobs with a shark motive (couldn't resist!).
13. A star patterned top from Chaser. Great with a pair of leggings.
14. A light red hoodie from Abercrombie and Fitch (can't get enough!).
15. Purple bikini from Marc by Marc Jacobs found at Sawgrass mills (Bloomingdales outlet).
16. A small and convenient black wallet from Kate Spade, found at Bloomingdales.

....and another favorite here to the left: 
My new sunglasses from Marc by Marc Jacobs.

I also found many new beauty favorites and here is my pick!
1. Pacifica's coconut body butters which can be found at Sephora.
2. Shadow palette from Too Faced. Great color cobination!!
3. A new favorite nail polish color from Nails inc. London called "Chelsea square".
4. A fantastic hair treatment from Bumble and Bumble called "Creme de Coco". Perfect for sun worn hair and the fact that it smells like coconut doesn't hurt either ;))
5. Since they didn't have the Redken conditioner I was looking for (All soft), I tried another one called "Smooth down" which I LOVED! Great smell too that sticks the whole day and night!
6. A body creme from Victoria's Secret called "Tropic breeze" that smells like heaven!
7. A smokey eye brush from Sephora. The perfect eye shadow tool!!


Florida Road Trip

There are holidays and then there are holidays like this one, which are more like HOLY days.....meaning, days of peace and quiet, days that you fully and entirely enjoy, selfish days, days where you can recover from or prepare yourself for something. In our case, it was more the latter ;))

So what can I say about our trip to Florida? Honestly? Lots! Too much even! ...and narrowing it down will be immensly difficult. We spent 11 fabulous days traveling around Florida by car and here is what we did and some snapshots.

March 22nd
An awfully long flight from Geneva, via Zurich to Miami international airport. Have you ever immigrated into the US? Well, then you know why you are not exactly happy even to be off the plane. In fact, that's when the hard part starts. The waiting..........

March 22nd-24th
Picking up our rental car and driving across to the west side and to Port Charlotte.
On Friday we spent a sunny afternoon on Englewood beach. Great place!
Englewood beach
Chris taking the plunge ;)
Me at Englewood beach
 In the evening we drove to Fort Myers Beach to try out a restaurant recommended to us by a friend, Matanzas, where Chris tried Alligator tail and I had an amazingly yummy Pina Colada and a very tasty Lobster.

Choosing what to eat....not so easy when hungry like a wolf ;)
On Saturday, we spent the whole day attending Florida International Airshow with VIP Photographers passes. Very convenient and very price worthy!!

March 24th-25th
Driving up to Orlando to visit Disney world!! Thanks to my super kind former colleague from Disney, we got employee tickets and could enjoy a great, sunny day in Disney's Magic Kingdom. We wanted to visit the other parks as well, but time flies fast when you're having fun ;))

March 25th-29th
We drove down to Boca Raton on the east coast where we spent some really really great days of both beach and pool time (including lots of reading), diving, shopping and eating ;)) 
Pool time in Boca
By the beach in Boca Raton
We also took the time one evening to go to the cinema and finally watched "The Hunger Games" (read more here: http://www.rottentomatoes.com/m/the_hunger_games/ ) ! Such a great and thrilling movie!!! We both loved it.

On Chris's birthday (26th of March) we went to "Wakodahatchee Wetlands" (a bit of a local secret gem), close to Delray beach, where we saw, among many other species, both 2 kinds of turtles and an alligator, swimming very close to where we were. Really cool!

See you later, Alligator!
A cute little turtle made a swim-by =))
A proud birdie
A loud birdie!
Enjoying the views
Water lily's
Boca Raton was a lovely place that we will try to go back to! It's beautiful, clean, has great diving and lost of friendly people and quite a lot of things to do as well. It also had a beautiful, loooooong beach. Unfortunately, Boca had no Pinkberry (which is my favorite frozen yoghurt brand) but they did have something very similar called Yogen Früz, where one of their current special flavors suited me like a hand in a glove, namely: Pina Colada =p I had one each day of course to be sure I'd get my share of this divine dessert....... Ha ha haaaa!
Pina Colada flavored frozen yoghurt with fresh coconut, mango and strawberries
If you like Asian food and you're in the neighborhood, I'd recommend you to try "Kin noodle bar", located on South federal highway! Great food and great service......so good that we ate there two evenings in a row ;)

March 29th-30th
We drove on towards Key Largo and on the way passed by the gigantic outlet "Sawgrass Mills"! Amazingly worth the time! I found so many treasures here even though we only spent a few hours there. Afterwards we continued driving down to Key Largo where we only spent one day. Unfortunately, the hotel was not as good as promised when we booked it, which was a bit of a disappointment. Chris had some great sushi though in the neighbor restaurant, which compensated for that part ;) Also, I must say, the sunset was STUNNING!!
The small marina at the hotel
The sun is beginning to set
Our reflections from the pier
The gorgeous Key Largo sunset!
March 30th-April 1st
Again driving on. This time to Key West! A beautiful but quite long drive. We made some stops along the way to enjoy the scenic views and also to take a swim in the sea. No so easy as it was VERY shallow waters.
Once down in Key West, we checked into Avalon Bed and Breakfast! Highly recommended!! Super cute and lovely rooms and fantastic service and breakfasts. It's located right on Duval street, very near the Southern most point. If you go, depending on what you want to do, I'd say that to generalize, the closer to the southern most point you get on Duval street, the calmer. While the closer to Mallory square on the other end, the more noisy and "partyish" it gets ;)

Some very good rules at this guesthouse!!
Walking Duval Street

Key West sunset
One of the many performers on Mallory square at sunset...
 While in Key West, we spent one amazing day on a sail boat arranged by a company called Danger Charters. This is a tour with a very limited amount of passengers, which makes it a nicer experience. Again HIGHLY recommended!! It was a half day snorkeling/kayaking tour on a very special sail boat that can go on extremely shallow waters. The crew was lots of fun and very knowledgable. We kayaked around a little wildlife sanctuary where we saw and heard lots of birds and also got to "meet" a big Horseshoe Crab.
While kayaking, we saw a Bonnet head shark swimming by which was really cool and while snorkeling, Chris and I followed a Stingray for quite a while and managed to snap a shot of it.
We are sailing!
In the kayak
Horse shoe crab
A Queen Angelfish
Sea star resting at the bottom of the sea
Sting ray
In Key West, we were a bit annoyed about the size of the portions while ordering food or ice cream.... It is unbelievable if a single person can manage to finish a plate down there!! One evening, we had pasta in a nice Italian restaurant and I was hungry like a wolf. When I was finished, my plate looked untouched and if we would have had a microwave in our hotel, we could have saved what was left and enjoyed another three meals from just my plate, without exaggerating. Quite a waste and really crazy!

We had one of our best dinners in Key West at a Tapas restaurant called "Santiago's Bodega" located on Petronia street, which would be my favorite food recommendation if you go Key West. Everything we had tasted DIVINE and came in at least roughly normal sized tapas portions. Compared to European tapas plates however, I'd say each tapas dish can easily be shared by 2 people! Go there if you have the chance..... I'd be very surprised if you are disappointed =p

April 1st-April 2nd
We arrived quite late in Miami Beach and basically went straight to bed. The next morning we walked around the area, had a lovely breakfast at a bakery called "Paul" on Lincoln road! Great spot for breakfasts, brunches, lunches and/or people watching =)
I was recommended by a friend to try Coconut Mojito's during our trip and had one on Lincold road that tasted amazing!! If you are a coconut fan like me, don't miss out =p

Coconut Mojito
As it was such an incredibly hot day, we weren't exactly enjoying walking around in the city too much, so in the early afternoon we decided to do some last minute shopping at "Dadeland mall" which is only 20 minutes away from Miami International airport. This way we escaped the heat and were instead freezing from the mall air conditioning ;)

April 2nd -April 3rd
On the 2nd we flew back from Miami to Geneva via Zurich. A for once, very painless long haul flight as I fell asleep sometime after a few chapters of the new book that I bought, "Bossy pants" by Tina Fey (highly entertaining!!) and the airplane dinner. I woke up just before landing in Zurich....in other words, I was quite exhausted.

I loved every second of this trip but can clearly say that 10-11 days is NOT ENOUGH!! At least not when driving around so much. I definitely want to go back one day....


PS. I will do a separate post on the shopping ;))