From The Lyme To The Firenze

What an amazing 48 hours!

On Wednesday I woke up in my apartment in Lyme Regis with just my sisters as they had been for a sleepover.  Thank you to Trevor and Jim for looking after all the children – we did enjoy ourselves.L and A in Lyme apartment I always enjoy visiting Lyme Regis and this had been a particularly good visit as I had seen so many members of my family.  This is the ‘mushroom house’ which is the subject of one of the drawings my Aunty did which are on the wall in the apartment!Mushroom House 1 Lyme Regis is such a pretty town, I will miss it.pink house Lyme I most enjoyed the central and beachfront location of the apartment as it meant so many people popped in.  This is Chris, my cousin Miranda’s husband who lives less than a 5 minute walk away and he came round for a cuppa.Chris in window seatThis scene of the beach is very Lowryesque!
Lyme low tode We have experienced extraordinarily high tides and also incredibly low tides during our visit which all contributes to making the beach a dynamic area which is constantly changing.Lyme Regis low tode We relocated from Lyme Regis in the afternoon to Grandpa Ian’s in Sidmouth where we enjoyed the sunshine and caught up with Mera.Grandpa Ian's 3 I always enjoy sitting on this patio, especially when it is so sunny and I have so many lovely people to chat to.Grandpa Ian's 2 Grandpa Ian's 1 Ian had made a fabulous shepherd’s pie following a recipe from The Ivy – delicious. We also had Banoffee pie and a chocolatey yummy something and more wine vicar.  Yet another diet disaster of a day but a really lovely day.At Grandpa Ian's I was up very early on Thursday morning.Lyme Regis sunrise 14-8 Up in time for sunrise actually which was spectacular for about 2 minutes.  Farewell lovely Lyme, we will be back soon.Lyme Regis sunriseWe spent Thursday travelling to Florence in Tuscany in Italy.  I was very excited as it is a part of the world I have not visited before.  We had a very long and frustrating journey but got there in the end.

Everywhere we go, Harvey always checks the pool first and this one did not disappoint.  I had really wanted to relax by the pool to get over travel traumas but unfortunately it had just closed as we checked in to our hotel.H checking Italian pool

Nevermind, we can look forward to relaxing in it the next day.

Firenze hotel pool We decided to eat straight away as we had not eaten since a sandwich at Gatwick about 8 hours earlier and were all hungry.  We settled in to the restaurant at the hotel and enjoyed the sunset over Florence.Firenze hotel restaurant view H in Firenze hotel L in Firenze hotel A decent Chianti helped us relax.ChiantiLara and I had conchilgie with goose ragout and black truffles.  To be honest the hotel restaurant is a bit poncey and the waiting staff are too fussy for my liking.  I am more of a homely trattoria type of a person, especially when tired and hungry but this was all tasty enough but so expensive.  This bowl of pasta cost more then a good steak at home!conchiglie goose ragout with truffles Dessert was fabulous.  Chocolate fondant with vanilla ice-cream.  Worth every over-priced Euro.chocolate fondant pudding

Buongiorno Firenze 🙂

We sat and had breakfast looking out over Florence this morning.  I had a lovely coffee flavoured yogurt with a large portion of fruit salad and a cappuchino.

breakfast fruit and yogurt Followed by salami, ham, cheese, brown bread tomato and scrambled egg.  That set me up for the day and apart from some crisps with a beer in the afternoon, it kept me going until supper time.breakfast meat 15-8 We then set off in to Florence centre which was the first time for us all which made it exciting.  I took so many pictures and many of them I do not know what they are.  All of Florence is like an art gallery or museum and you could happily photograph everything you look at.  Statues like this one are all over the place.  This is near the Ponte Vecchio.statue in Florence This is the Ponte Vecchio – we had started walking along it before I realised we were on it as either side is full of shops so you think you are on a street.on Ponte Vecchio 2 Mainly jewellery shops, not all of which were open.Ponte Vecchio jewellers There is a large area in the middle where you can see you are definitely on a bridge.L and H on ponte Vecchio This bridge was built in 1345 and is the only bridge to not be blown up in WW2.  Hard to believe we were walking over something built so long ago.  It did look like a set from a film!

on Ponte Vecchio There are lots of charming doors everywhere too.by Ponte Vecchio This is Ponte Vecchio seen from the river banks.  The River Arno was looking very green.Ponte Vecchio A very Italian scene!Carabanieri The Uffizi which we did not visit today but we do have tickets for tomorrow.Uffizi Round the corner and we walked in to the Piazza della Signoria which is like a sculpture gallery.Piazza della Signoria My little darlings beside the Neptune Fountain.  Unbelievably it was very cloudy in the morning and it even rained – I really don’t believe it.L and H Neptune fountain The grey skies soon changed to blue though so good humour was quickly restored.Firenze street There really are little things of interest EVERYwhere you look.H and blue man Another typically Italian street scene of all the mopeds.mopeds Limoncello.limoncello Postcards.postcards I do have a guide book but apart from that I know very little about Florence except it is stunning and gorgeous and lovely and I need to know more about it.  The trouble with booking a trip so last minute is that you have no time to prepare or read up in advance but luckily the helpful ladies in the tourist info’ did know lots about their city.Tourist infoEven Tourist Information is in a beautiful building.
Florenxe tourist info 1 H by horse in Firenze Of all the iconic images of Florence, this must be one of the most famous – the Duomo.Duomo 3 My chin was practically dragging along the ground as my mouth must surely have been gaping at such incredible beauty.Duomo 2 It is so huge and so stunningly beautiful it is almost impossible to believe what you are looking at is real and was created by human beings.  The queue was too long to go in so we enjoyed the outside and we will try to get inside another day.Duomo 1 I needed a coffee and I am in the right country for one of those.  I tried an Espresso which was great.  That and a glass of cold sparkling water and I was back in action.Firenze espresso The Florentines do have very fancy doorbells outside their apartments.

Firenze doorbells 4

They really are quite lovely.

Firenze doorbells 3 Firenze doorbells 2

 

 

Firenze doorbells 5

 

Firenze doorbells 1

We did not go inside any of the galleries or churches today.  Instead we walked around to get our bearings and to check out the famous buildings.

And the curious buildings!  Why has this building got all these bits of paper stuck on it?bills on buildings Very strange.bill covered building This is the exterior of the Mercato Centrale, which is Florence’s huge food market.Mercato Centrale exterior All around the streets outside are market stalls,

market at <ercatoselling mainly leather goods such as these desk tidies.

 

desk tidies Wallets.wallets Belts.leather belts More belts.Real Python Wrist bands.leather wristbands I am having camera trouble :-(.  My best camera is being temperamental and often refuses to work so I use the little one which is good quality for its size and type.  I found a new setting today which I tested on the Little Fella.

He liked it but I think I will stick to a more conventional setting.Harvey in Italia

 

I love the buildings standing out behind the stalls.Farmacia Mercato Cntrale We went inside the Mercato Centrale and could not believe our eyes.  It was HUGE !!!  Look at the size of the lampshades.Mercato Centrale Firenze This building is made of cast iron and glass and was built in 1874.  When it was restored in 1980, a mezzanine floor was added.  The building seemed to be mainly taken up be takeaway foods but we were not hungry from breakfast so we just looked around the stalls.Mercato Centrale La Scuola Di Cucina This is absolutely nothing like the kitchens I have ever learnt to cook in.  This is a very smart looking school.cookery school So many of the products for sale had really pretty packaging.pastiglie leone puro oliva soap Firenze soap I would have loved to try some of these and next time I think I will.Firenze cheese Back outside in the heat and throng of Florence.  I do keep thinking I am looking at a film set.Firenze buildings 2 But I am not, it is all real.Firenze buildings

We relaxed by the pool at our hotel in the afternoon and in the evening we wandered down some streets near our hotel and came to this restaurant which my guide book reckons “is probably the best pizzeria in the city”.  I can’t comment as I have nothing in Florence to compare it to but it is definitely one of the best I have had.Pizzeria Antica Porta Lara had the 4 cheese and ham which was excellent.Lara in pizza place Harvey had one with hot dogs on it which he was thrilled about as he loves a hot dog.hot dog pizza I had the 4 cheese with a beer which hit the spot perfectly.4 cheese pizza Fierenze Followed by a  Tiramisu which may not look very interesting but it was superb.  I would highly recommend this fantastic restaurant if you like eating casually but to a very high standard and we will have to exert some will power to not return tomorrow in order that we can try somewhere new!Tiramisu We ended the evening watching sunset over the city with a drink at our hotel.view over Florence

An incredible day and I can’t wait to see what we can see tomorrow.

About Lose Weight and Gain Health

Hi! My name is Zoe and I live in a small village in the beautiful Weald of Kent with my husband and 2 children. I have been fighting the fat for years but this time I am serious. I want to lose weight and gain health. This blog is about how I am changing my lifestyle so I can lose weight but not by just "being on a diet" but by making small changes to our lives so that as I lose weight, I gain health. I want my family to be healthy too and never have to struggle with their weight like I have. In common with many large people, I have gained and lost weight many times over the years. This time, I want to lose it and maintain a healthy low weight. I am interested in eating food that is nutrient dense and delicious and that appeals to children and adults. I try to use locally produced food supplemented with what I can grow myself. I support and try to use local farmers markets and farm shops. After all, I live in the 'Garden of England' so it seems silly to not take advantage of that. Another objective is to add more exercise to our days. It sounds so simple when I write it down :-)
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