Bringing Down the White Picket Fence


My very first memories of my childhood begin at the age of 5.  There are two early events that remain solidly etched into my mind.  1. The overwhelming excitement of waking up at 4am on the first day of kindergarten.  2.  My first trip to Niagara Falls. Now all I remember about that first day of kindergarten is that I could finally wear my first day of school dress.  Don’t ask me about… Read More

The most common question we got when people asked us where we were headed for Spring Break was: Why Austin, Texas?  Our question was: Why not? Austin is an easy direct flight (about 3 and a half hours) on Southwest Airlines from Newark Airport.  But hold it cowboy!  This isn’t quite like the Texas most people imagine.  That’s not to say you can’t buy yourself some high quality kicks at Allens Boots,… Read More

Admire the Louvre While tourists flock to the Louvre to sneak a glimpse at the Mona Lisa, we prefer to stay outside the museum and bask in the beauty of the Louvre Palace.  Set below the blue skies of Paris, this building is a stunning work of art. At night, the lights transform it into a majestic masterpiece.   © Paul and Michelle Shappirio and Bringing Down the White Picket Fence, 2007-2014…. Read More

Stroll the Bridges You don’t have to stand in line at all the tourist attractions to get the best views of Paris.  Skip the lines and head for the bridges!  Take an evening stroll, breathe in the delicious Paris air, and watch the sun work its magic on this beautiful city. When the sun goes down, the city and its bridges light up.  Stay up late and share in the nightlife.  This… Read More

If you haven’t had a chance to read Our Guide to Paris-Where We Eat (Part 1), please be sure you do!  As promised, we have some additional favorites described below! Les Deux Magots  ( 6 place Saint-Germain-des-Prés, 75006 Paris, France Unfortunately, these days, Les Deux Magots gets a bad rap for being touristy and overpriced.  Being one of Hemingway’s old haunts, this beautiful cafe gets a lot of traffic.  We recommend coming… Read More

Paris, that magical place that makes people’s eyes sparkle.  Whether they’ve traveled there or not, the world swoons over Paris.  Maybe its love, maybe its good bread and cheese, or maybe its just that glittering tower that draws travelers in and keeps them coming back for more.  With all of its fascinating architecture, glittering lights, and bustling cafes, the city of Paris is dreamy and delicious and not to be missed. I… Read More

It’s the moment you’ve been waiting for.  The first post of many on our road trip across the good ol’ U S of A. I know I promised a “live” blog to many of you, but doing this “live” isn’t as easy as I thought it would be.  While driving across this great land of ours, I have a lot of time to think about what I’m going to write, but rarely… Read More

Chicago and I fell in love over a hot dog. At Wrigley Field, I indulged in a juicy, Vienna beef hot dog, topped with fried onions, ketchup, mustard, bright neon green relish (we need to talk about the color of this relish, Chicago), and some incredibly spicy yet amazing Chicago sport peppers. This was all nicely positioned inside a long, white, poppy seed bun. Paul savored his two bites and agreed-this was… Read More

Our Moms are in Paris and we’ve been so busy showing them the city that I’ve neglected to blog.  We’ve had them on bicycles and boats, to cafes and museums, on the sidelines of the Tour de France, and even for their first falafel!  I wish we had toted the camera along for that street dining experience!  We’ve walked and walked in the blazing sun and heat (they kindly brought it with… Read More

Provence…sigh… Blame my lack of blogging on the South of France. We just returned to Paris from our little “vacation on vacation”, a luxurious retreat to Saint Remy de Provence. Two years of marriage equals two sweet and delicious days of celebration in French paradise. Our only regret is we didn’t stay a week. I suggest if you are planning to walk down the aisle and say “I do” anytime soon, you… Read More