Herbstferien 2015- Italy (post #1)

We’ve started the tradition of going to Italy for the two week Herbstferien (Fall vacation) every year. October is the perfect time of year to go to Imperia. The weather is perfect- still beach weather, but not too hot. Added bonus- the summer crowds are gone. And we have a free place to stay!  We left a few days later than we had originally planned because Quinnie had the stomach flu and we wanted to make sure nobody else in the family was going to get it. The coast was clear, so we packed up and headed out.

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Unfortunately, this road sign was prophetic…

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An hour into our drive, there was a horrible traffic accident that led to a gridlocked traffic jam. When it became obvious that we weren’t going anywhere anytime soon, people started getting out of their cars to stretch and socialize…

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..and roller blade down the long stretch of Autobahn.

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Quinnie was excited that she got to sit up front with us for a while.

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At least there was a sort-of-nice Fall view?

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Finally passing the wreck… We were stuck there for three hours, so our 11 hour trip turned into a 14 hour road trip.

We were pretty happy to finally be moving again. I usually play DJ on long road trips, and whenever I play “Pippi Langstrumpf ” (Pippi Longstocking) for the girls, Simon loves it. Nice memories from his childhood, I guess? What cracks me up is that when I scan back to the girls (in this video), it’s obvious that Papa is WAY more into it than they are.

Another childhood favorite… at least the girls were into this one also!

Unfortunately, that was the end of good times on that car ride. Things took a bad turn when we were driving through one of the longest tunnels in the world (it connects German speaking Switzerland to Italian speaking Switzerland). Out of nowhere, Kiera started vomiting explosively. I wasn’t prepared, so I just twisted around to the back seat so that she could vomit into my cupped hands. We couldn’t pull over for 10 minutes because we were stuck inside that damn tunnel. So for 10 minutes both girls were screaming/ crying and I couldn’t even comfort them because my hands were full of vomit.

When we were finally able to pull over, and Kiera threw up again, it became obvious that she’d caught Quinnie’s stomach bug. It was about 10pm. We searched on our phones to try and find a hotel room in the area. The cheapest one was 400 euros ($450). We decided that was ridiculous, and would have to just keep driving. We still had four hours of driving ahead of us. Poor Kiera vomited every 15 minutes like clockwork the rest of the way. Poor Quinnie was traumatized as well (I think we all were). She doesn’t do well when her sister is in pain or really upset. She felt really guilty that she’d gotten Kiera sick. Plus, there was vomit everywhere. It was a nightmare.

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So I kind of have an aversion to tunnels now…

But I also have to note that the tunnels here are interesting in that only the space needed for the tunnel is dug out, leaving the rest of mountain or hill intact…

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Finally in Italy! Pics of the neighborhood…

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Sea life there…

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A few days after we arrived Kiera started feeling better. But then Mama got the stomach flu (and itchy red splotchy hives all over my body from fever). Not fun at all. It took me about 4 days to recover, but then all was good and we were finally able to enjoy our vacation.

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Kiera is turning into such a fish. She was in the water for hours everyday.

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Simon’s favorite soda here is called Mezzo Mix (it’s a mixture of half Coke/ half orange Fanta). Here he is making his own…

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Kiera checking out the octopuses (octopi?) at the grocery store.

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much gelato was eaten…

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We spent a few days in France (day trips) as well.

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Of course we had to stop in Menton for our favorite frozen lemon slushies. Check out Kiera’s face after her first sip!

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They are made with the famous lemons of the region and are very sour, but also very sweet.

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Quinnie’s face!!

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Kiera found that “special” rock on the beach in Menton and had to carry it around the rest of the day…

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Another highlight of the vacation? Kiera lost her last front tooth! She was very proud. She took great care of it and made sure to keep it safe until we got home and she could put it in her special “tooth box”. The tooth fairy has never come to our house. Both girls insist that their teeth are too precious to give away!

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She asked me to take this close-up picture. I can’t believe that’s the last time one of my kids is going to lose a front tooth (sob!).

Italy post #2 coming up next!

4 thoughts on “Herbstferien 2015- Italy (post #1)

  1. Aunt Jenny

    Also, who knew Simon had so much rhythm! Impressive:)

  2. Aunt Jenny

    I want to go to Italy with you guys one time. I insist on taking my own car though to avoid the vomit:)

    • Meegan

      Yes- come to Italy with us! That would be so much fun!

  3. Marlaine Lerz

    I jumped ahead and read blog 2 first! Love the happy pics of Kiera’s toothless smile! Boy, the girls get to try all kinds of foods..grandma is jealous! I remember our trip to Menton and Monacco..awesome places and so close to Imperia..You all look happy! Love, mom

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