Posted in Travel

The Mall in Florence, shopping in Tuscany

When I knew for sure that I would be traveling to Italy, I knew that I’d be getting a new handbag. You see, years ago… before we had children… Doug and I took a trip to Italy. Doug even rented a car and drove me through Tuscany and out to the tiny Luxury Outlet Mall in Florence called The Mall. Back then, there were maybe 4 or 5 stores at The Mall and I left empty-handed. This trip, I was not going to let that happen again. We visited The Mall in Florence and had a wonderful day of shopping in beautiful Tuscany.

A girls trip to Florence, Italy

It might have been that it was a girls trip, it might have been the amazing weather, or maybe the wine even. I’m not really sure, maybe all of it. However, this time I managed to buy the perfect handbag that I knew would be treasured for years to come. Since returning, I posted a review over on Trip Advisor and I now get several questions a month about whether the trip to The Mall in Florence is worth it.

Lunch at the Gucci Cafe

I loved our trip to The Mall. But what stands out the most for me is my experience at Gucci. The staff is so friendly, helpful, and very patient. I knew I wanted a handbag but had a tight budget. After shopping for almost an hour, we decided to head up to the rooftop Cafe. Our lunch on the patio was fantastic. The food was perfect, as was the wine and the weather. It was relaxing to sit out in the sun, enjoy the meal, and then be able to find the perfect bag before heading back into Florence. Even if you don’t buy anything, I highly recommend the Cafe.

Wine at the Gucci Cafe

So yes, it’s worth a trip to The Mall if you are in or around Florence. As I said in my review, we spent a lot of time at Gucci, probably most of our day actually. They make it such a fun experience and the cafe was fantastic. The prices were in line with an outlet store but the benefit is the value-added tax (VAT) that you get back after your purchase.

Shopping in Florence, Italy

It’s not every day that a girl gets to go to Italy with some of her favorite people plus go shopping at one of the most amazing luxury outlets in Italy. I am also pretty sure that my husband is relieved he didn’t have to rent another car and take me there. Lucky for us, they have a charter bus service that will take you out and bring you back for just 13 Euros. It was such a great trip, really easy to do on our own, and now we have pretty treasures to remind us of our fantastic trip.

Spend a day in Salzburg, Austria

A Day Trip To Salzburg

I really can’t believe it’s been over six months since we went to Europe. I needed a little trip down memory lane today and wanted to share about our day trip to Salzburg. Our family is still talking about what an amazing time it was. We tried to hit as many cities as possible and sneak in a few day trips here and there. Our favorite day trip by far was to Salzburg, Austria. Salzburg is known as the home of Mozart, lots of LOVE, fortresses, rivers, and of course… The Sound of Music. I loved Salzburg and wish I had spent more time there. The kids loved this day trip and we really look forward to going back. Until then, here’s a short list of things you must do when you take a quick day trip to Salzburg. continued

Packing light with CozyPhone headphones

**This post contains CozyPhone Amazon affiliate links, all opinions are my own.**

Train rides through Europe

This past summer we took a three week trip to Europe. Each girl had her own backpack to carry. One of the biggest space stealers was the iPod and headphone case. Both a necessity as we were going to be taking an 18-hour train ride without internet. We managed just fine, but had we known about the CozyPhones beforehand, we would have made sure we had them with us. We’re so excited CozyPhone sent us these headbands to try out for our next trip. continued

Traveling made easy: Creating a travel wardrobe

Shopping for your travel wardrobe with my affiliate links will give me a small commission. 

We love to travel… a lot. Any chance we get, we’ll hit the road. Since I’m the one that packs up three out of four of us, I pretty much have this down to a science. I know exactly how much will fit in each bag and still have a good idea of how much room is left for those extras we pick up along the way. One thing I have done over the years is create a travel wardrobe for myself so it’s one less thing that I need to worry about. continued

Food for flight: Our inflight experience on Air France

Food for Flight

When Emelia was asked to run the Venice Marathon and I volunteered to go carry her shoes, it wasn’t until we were boarding our flight that it finally hit me that we were actually going to Italy. We walked through SFO and both of us stopped in our tracks when we saw the ginormous Airbus A380.

Traveling on Air France

As a former flight attendant, these things don’t normally phase me, but this plane is big. We immediately wondered what the in-flight service was going to be like since there were so many passengers onboard. So here’s a little food for flight though about our in-flight experience on Air France.

Champagne on Air France

I think the funniest part of our fight was we were seated in the very last row in the last two seats on the upper deck both on our flight to Paris and returning home. So right away we thought we were in for a very long sad haul. However, our experience was quite the opposite. For our economy seats, we actually had a lot of space, the in-flight team was terrific, and the food was surprisingly well… good.

Dinner on Air France

Anytime you are traveling, I think there needs to be an understanding that the airplane is there to get you from point A to point B safely. Not much more. So if you would like a fine dining experience, you need to book a First Class ticket. Like everything in life, you get what you pay for. That being said, we really did enjoy our in-flight meals. I will be forever grateful for Emelia’s ability to translate for me. She described our cold bean salad spot on. This was by far my least favorite part of our flight.

Breakfast on Air France

After a long night of no sleep… because a mom rarely gets a chance to watch eleven hours straight of uninterrupted movies… I think by the time breakfast came around we were so excited because we knew that we’d be landing in Paris soon. We didn’t even care we were served the same bread from the night before.

Back of the plane

The only way our flight could have been better is if we were sitting in First Class. But, our Economy Class experience wasn’t bad at all. In fact, we’re thinking about another trip to Europe soon and will definitely consider Air France again when booking.

Do you have a favorite airline that you like to travel?



Women who travel: Italy or bust…

Last month I started writing for a travel blog contributing on a monthly basis about places I’ve been and want to share. She’s On The Go is a travel blog written by your best girlfriends that you didn’t know you had. They’re there to talk about everything you need to know about travel – where to go, what to see, what to wear, and even who to take with you on your next adventure. I’ll be contributing to their site from the perspective of a woman vs. traveling as a family. I have plenty of those stories to share here, but every once in a while you can see things differently when you travel alone… which I rarely if ever do.

She's on the go continued

Traveling to Europe: How to pack for a long vacation

We are just under thirty days away from our big trip to Europe. I’ve talked about how 2017 was going to be an adventure, and we’re actually following through with it. Europe, here we come. My mom will be taking care of our dog, house guest coming to visit (even though we won’t be here) and a new alarm that I’m sure will go off several times because my mother can’t remember the code. All that being said, people keep asking me how we are going to pack for a long vacation when traveling to Europe this summer.

Traveling to Europe: How to pack for a long vacation. continued

Influential Disneyland Bloggers

Walt and Mickey at Disneyland

I’ve been writing about Disneyland for a long time. I think Emma was just 15 months old when we when to Disneyland for the first time. Over the years we’ve managed to spend a lot of time at Disneyland, a couple trips to Walt Disney World, and Aulani seems to be our home away from home. This summer, we’ll add Disneyland Paris to our Disney dream list. Writing about Disney has been a passion of mine; something that I’ve loved doing over the years and will keep doing as long as we keep going. continued

Who was… book series for young readers by WHOHQ

In getting ready for our summer vacation, we want to incorporate a few landmarks that would hopefully be memorable to our children. Traveling at such a young age, it’s hard to know what they’ll remember in the years to come. One of our stops this summer is Amsterdam. I’ve always wanted to visit the Anne Frank house, but not sure how to explain the Holocaust and why we need to honor this young girl. I immediately started a search for children’s books about Anne Frank. Not only did I find the perfect book about Anne Frank, but I stumbled upon WHOHQ and opened an entire library of goodness for young readers. continued

About me

Stay-at-home mother of two, wife, blogger, amateur photographer. Former flight attendant. Lover of all things Disney. Living the dream.
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I wrote a book about Disneyland

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