Never Stop Exploring

Nelson and Allie visit Key West in August 2012

"Never Stop Exploring" is the saying that is printed on the handle of our luggage. Every trip we make that saying is staring us in the face. Its a wonderful reminder that life is truly a journey and that we should never stop seeking new adventures. That is just what we have been up to the past three years away from the blog and it is what we intend to keep doing!

Hello, blog followers! Since the proposal back in 2012, a lot has happened. We figured it was about time we catch the blog up to 2015. Some blog postings to expect in the future will be centered around:

  • The trip in closing: How we are different and where do we go from here?
  • Starting a New Life in Florida
  • Life as Husband and Wife
  • Turkey: OUR ultimate honeymoon destination
  • Panama: Carnival with the Panamanians
  • Colombia: An up and coming tourist destination
  • Fun travels throughout the diverse US

Even though the travel blog has been on hiatus, our adventurous lives have not. Let us catch you up...

Italy Pt. 2- Calabria, family, and the proposal!

Nelson and Allie in the church he proposed in, Pianopoli Italy

While traveling in Italy, we decided to head far south to where Allie's family immigrated to America from. Allie had visited family still living in Pianopoli, the small town in Calabria, back in 2001 with family. When we returned in 2012, We were welcomed with open arms from Allie's father's cousins. We spent several nights in this tiny town that has deep meaning to Allie. Little did Allie know, after leaving it would mean so much more! Nelson had a plan to propose to Allie in the church that her grandparents were married in. After some confusion about which church Allie's grandparents were actually married in, Nelson popped the question at the correct church by the altar. Allie cried tears of joy, and of course accepted. Our family had a delicious lunch waiting for us with a thoughtful congratulatory cake. A whirlwind of emotions from the minute we arrived in the small town. Allie remembered her last visit to the town 11 years prior with her great aunt, great uncle and cousins from Montreal, and her aunt and uncle and cousins from the states and beautiful memories they created. The memories of Zio Pino as we were honored to stay in his apartment. Allie was just happy to share the town that meant so much to her with Nelson. Now it has a special place in Nelson's heart as well with new happy memories. Enjoy our photos of a place and event that means so very much to us! We miss you all and hope to see you again soon! 

Italy Pt. 1- Exploring an Paestum and Agropoli

Beautiful view in Agropoli

Ahhh, Italy! There's no other place quite like it. Very laid back, very passionate for their culture, and very inviting. We decided to end our journey around the world with a Euro Road trip. From Nice, France we drove south to Italy. Along the west coast, we decided to stop in an old Greek settlement, Paestum. Paestum is just south of Naples. We stayed for 4 days and truly enjoyed our time and the food! We ventured to Agropoli, a beautiful seaside town on a hill. We saw ancient Greek ruins and relaxed on beautiful beaches. Next, we venture further south to Calabria, the region which Allie's family immigrated from, where we visit Allie's family and Nelson had a huge surprise for Allie!

France Pt. 3: The French Riviera!

Allie and Nelson on the romantic French Riviera!
Ahhh! The south of France! The beautiful blue waters, the fresh air, the amazing food! The south of France was incredible. We had such a blast, especially since we met up with Allie's family. Allie's brother and his girlfriend came from Arizona and her parents were gracious enough to rent a house for us all in the small town of Vence overlooking the Cote d'Azur. We traveled to Nice, Monaco, Antibes, and St. Tropez. We snapped photos with some amazing views, some amazing eats, and some amazing family! Thank you for coming out to meet us in France! We built some amazing memories in our week long stay on the Riveria! Next up, we road trip it to Italia where we met with more family and ate more amazing food. :)

France Pt.2: Time with family in Central France!

Allie and Nelson with family in Central France

We had a beautiful time spent with family in central France. Nelson's godmother, Mary and her husband Girard were gracious enough to open their beautiful homes in St. Etienne, just outside of Lyon, and their country home in a small town of Chateauneuf to us for a week. We also met Mami and Papi, Girard's loving parents. With a lot of translation, many bottles of wine, and more cheese and bread than we had ever eaten, we had a priceless week with them. We created memories that will truly last a lifetime! Enjoy pictures from our time living like the French! 

Switzerland: Beautiful architecture, the best chocolate, and gnomes!

If you notice Allie and Nelson wearing the same jackets and scarves in every picture its because we are! Its cold and we have limited cold weather resources!
Welcome to Switzerland! Unique architecture and amazing chocolate. We traveled through Zurich and Lucerne on this brief stop over in Switzerland. Allie was able to see her Dad for the first time in 5 months. We sampled tasty chocolates and Allie got her gnome fix (she's slightly obsessed!) Next we train it back to France where we spent an amazing week in Central France with family and had an amazing experience living like locals! 

France Pt. 1: Ahhh, Paris!!!

Stealing a French Kiss
What can one say about Paris!? Nelson had visited Paris before but it was a first for Allie. Wow, did we have a blast! We also had other visitor, Allie's Mom who gave us the royal tour of the city of lights. How romantic it was. Allie's high school french lessons came in handy, enough to get by. We took a day trip to Versailles and also met up with our dear friend James who lives in Paris! A brief trip, but an excellent one! J'adore Paris!!! Next up, we travel to Switzerland but train where we checked out Zurich and Lucerne and also met yet another visitor, Allie's Dad!

UK: Our cold, wet, stop over in London!

Nelson and Allie checking out the sights on their brief stay in London!
Hello from London! We had about 24 hours between our flight from Tokyo to our flight to Paris to take in the sights of London. Clearly not enough time to explore this city. We were very jet lagged but still made an effort to see what we could in this cool city. It had a great vibe and British culture is awesome. We saw Parliament, Big Ben, the palace, and of course tried some fish and chips. We walked away from London knowing we must return to do it the right way! Next we head south to France where we spent one whole delicious month!

Japan: The wild world of Japanese culture!

Nelson and Allie with the beautiful blossoms in Ueno
Tokyo! The world of electronics, Japanese baseball, sushi, and very interesting and unique culture! We loved Japan and have vowed to come back and explore more. Their culture is extremely unique. The Japanese are very orderly, respectful, and very willing to help. Although there was a large language barrier, as they hardly speak any English, we found the Japanese to be very friendly. We were lucky enough to be there during the annual sakura, which is Japanese for Cherry Blossom Viewing. The beautiful cherry blossoms were in full bloom. We visited a fresh fish market, saw fascinating temples, and ate some amazingly fresh sushi! We found the city to be very clean and extremely modern with a complex metro system that made our head spin! Enjoy our journey through Tokyo. Next, we leave Asia and head for our final continent, Europe!

Cambodia Pt.3: A day with Cambodian children

Nelson playing with the kids
When we arrived in Cambodia we were taken back by the poverty, we wanted to help in anyway we could. Although a very small act of volunteer work, we chose a worthy charity and signed up for a day with the children. CHOICE Cambodia is a charity that primarily provides clean drinking water to villages outside of the main city. They also have a small school set up an hour from Phnom Penh. Every other Sunday 4 local villages send their children to the school where we volunteered. The organization provides arts and crafts, games, english lessons, and a hearty meal for all the children. This getaway from their daily lives every other week is sometimes the only way for them to obtain such attention and have a bit of fun. We helped with arts and crafts for the day. We couldn't help but notice that these children were so incredibly happy! They were full of energy, playing catching, hitting mangoes down from the tree and practicing English. They also listened to directions very well and were able to focus on their drawings. The experience was very well worth it and we encourage anyone who is interested to check out CHOICE's website here  CHOICE

Our time in Cambodia and as we traveled throughout the world, made us truly appreciate our lives and what we have. We are truly blessed and we feel we are in a position to help others. If you feel the same, we encourage you to help out in your own communities. There is always someone who could use your help.