Thank you so much for taking the time to visit our family blog. This may be your first visit here, or you may be a friend from across the globe, or family that we have just seen. Who ever you may be, thanks for taking the time to read about our little family, and all we are learning on this adventure the Lord has called us to live! Here you will find, the random thoughts, funny stories, prayer requests, and the journey our family and Jack is on with his battle with Leukemia.

Pisa, Wine, and more Wine....

When we were planning our trip, we decided to see the Leaning Tower of Pisa and go to another winery, instead of heading into Florence (which would have been another all day trip, like France was the day before). We were on our own this day, as the other members of the family all planned to go into the city.

We had a short drive to Miracle Square, where we learned the history of the tower and the basilica and cathedral surrounding it. There were hundreds of people there, and tons of street vendors. We went into the basilica were this lady sang int he middle of it, and her echo sand back to her... it was pretty cool. below is the view from the entrance, with the basilica in the front.

The Tower has a fascinating history, and as it turns out, is continuing to sink a little more every year. You can climb the 210 steps to get to the top, but they only allow 25 people up at a time! Tyler was asleep in the stroller for most of this tour! We opted not to climb the stairs!

The little city is surrounded by an ancient wall... it really was quite beautiful.

Inside the deceptively large church (because it looked so small on he outside, and when you went in, it opened up to be this massive building), were ceilings covered in gold, and many statues. They handed out these poncho things, if your shoulders were bare (if you were wearing a tank top). Most of the churches we went into in Italy require this of the ladies, as a sign of respect and what is appropriate. You also cannot have bare legs... so no shorts. Luckily, I had one of Tyler's blankies, because the ponchos smelled awful!

Outside of Miracle Square, were all these people dressed up as statues and they would just stand there for hours, waiting for tips... it really was kind of spooky.

After some quick shopping, we headed into the countryside, to another winery. The scenery was lovely.

The Il Poggio Winery...

Tyler amused himself in this cool tree, while we sampled some of the wines. It had all these trunks coming from one root...

The day was so lovely. The funny/sad thing about this winery experience, that made it so tremendously different from the one in Sicily, was the fact that 80% of the people on the tour with us got drunk in 30 minutes! In Sicily, people only samples the wine... it was a little different here.

We were seated at this long banquet table outside, where we were given some different meats, olives, bread, tomatoes, ect. There were 5 or 6 wines to be tasted. They put the bottles of the wine on the table, for the guests to try as they ate. So what made this amusing, was that no one was talking the first half of the meal. Everyone was being VERY polite, and keeping to themselves....

Then, it seems like all of a sudden to us, people who had never spoken started teasing. joking, shouting, and laughing VERY loudly... it was getting a little rough... that is when we went for a little walk and into the shop!

This cute little Italian Grandma made Tyler's bottle for him...

So as we were leaving, I went back to the table to grab some water, where I found our tour companions filling empty water bottles with the wine from the table. One lady got on the bus with her glass full to the brim of wine. When our guide told her it was unsafe to do that, she put the whole glass back in one shot! Thus began a LONG and rowdy drive back to the boat!

After having a first hand look at where we would be outside of the mercy of God in our lives, we were so grateful to the Lord that he has saved us. How thankful for the gospel we both were after this day! He is so good to us. Amidst all of the drinking, we did find a wine we both liked a lot, and brought home with us! The view wasn't too bad either!!!

When we got back to the boat and met up with the family, we found out we missed out on all the good shopping in Florence (the leather market, cheap wines, and oils.... ) Oh well!!!

Next and last stop, ROME!!! That is going to be a long post, because I have some amazing pictures and stories to tell!!!


Beth said...

OK, so I've got to know ... why did you need to cover up your shoulders in the "deceptively large church" that had gold ceilings? Was it because something fell from the ceiling that would attack bare shoulders? :)

Seth and Janet said...

so sad there is only one more stop to go, I have loved looking at all your pictures! It sounded like such an amazing trip.

Seth and Janet said...

so sad there is only one more stop to go, I have loved looking at all your pictures! It sounded like such an amazing trip.