6 months in America

It's been over six months since my last post -- six wonderful, exciting and fulfilling months. Up until a few weeks ago, I didn't even have my primary computer (my much-loved and ever-aging 27" iMac) in the house yet. I won't claim that I've spent the last six months "unplugged" by any stretch of the imagination, but they certainly were less-wired and for that I feel very thankful.

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During the height of our blog popularity -- from mid-2011 to mid-2012 when we averaged about 6,500 unique visitors a day -- I found myself in a constant state of experiencing life through the lens of "how am I going to blog about this?" It's a strange existence to be thinking about how you are going to present an experience to an audience when you should actually be experiencing it for yourself. I'm not complaining, just simply stating out loud that it's an interesting way to live.

Our regular blogging worked for us. It gave me an outlet for my writing and a place to share our experiences. The blog also helped connect us to future friends and to future clients. Lots of winning there that outweighed the negatives.

This time last year, however, as we began to seriously consider returning back to the U.S., I found myself less interested in the responsibility of blogging. Once we made the official decision to move back, I wanted to fully and, to be honest, selfishly, experience my last few months in Italy. I wanted to eat gelato without taking a photo. I wanted to stop on the Ponte Vecchio to take a photo because I wanted it, and not because I needed a photo for tomorrow's post. I wanted to absorb everything I possible could during those months.

Then, a funny thing happened. When we got back to the U.S. I found myself feeling that same yearning for privacy and personal experience and decided to take a break from blogging. It's been a relief and rejuvenating. It's also allowed me to focus whole-heartedly on setting up our new life here in Chapel Hill, NC.

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I've been reading blogs for the better part of a decade. I've been in that position before of following someone for years and then suddenly…poof…they disappear from the internet. I know that they aren't bound to me in any way, but it still feels like losing a friend without any explanation, in a weird way. It's not my intention to leave readers of this blog in that way, but I do have to tell you that our time apart has made my heart grow a little fonder.

I'm not sure what shape or form this blog will take as we go forward, but I do want to thank those of you that still come (a surprisingly large number of people) looking through the archives and, perhaps, hoping for a new update. I recognize that the experience my husband and I had from 2011 - 2014 was unique to say the least and that, yes, we were even "living the dream." Italy was a huge piece of that dream for a very long time and Florence is weaved into the fabric of my being at this point. But, to  be honest, I feel more so now than ever that I'm still living the dream. Life changes and dreams evolve along with it.

So, let's play catch-up. What's new in your lives?