Spain looks good on me! #iusedallthefilters
As I close out our month in Sitges, I find myself a little sad. We’ve had such an amazing month. Looking back at our trip thus far, I gotta say Sitges has been the best city for a “full family” experience. I personally loved Amsterdam, but Sitges stole the show as for a full family experience. Here’s my reflection of my in Sitges:
My goal in Italy was 80-miles again. I was feeling strong going into Spain, so I had no doubt I would make my goal. However, in the first week, I was having major hip pains, to the point that I struggled walking. I ended up getting a yoga mat and researching some good stretches for my hips and lower back. I took a couple day off and rested, so within my first week, I got behind on my goal. By the time I was feeling strong enough to run again, I didn’t want to push myself, so I got in my miles but allowed myself to ease up on my pace.
My running path in Sitges was pretty great. I had a primary route that looped me around to the beach front and was about 4-miles and a secondary route that took me a bit off-road up to a cliff that offered amazing views of Sitges.
Total Miles: 91.1
Loop Distance: 4 miles & 6 miles
Best Pace: 8:13 average pace / mile
Here are a few pictures of my running path: (slightly excessive on the photos this month, but it was so amazing … I don’t want to forget it.)
^The start of my running path. This is straight out our front gate.
^About a quarter mile in, I hit a lovely park, which had an amazing path.
^The first half of the run is basically running through the neighborhood, but the sidewalks and paths were amazing.
^Another neighborhood shot.
^If I took the 6-mile path, I would hit the ocean about 2-miles into the run. I literally cried the first time I took that path, it was so overwhelmingly beautiful and the sound was incredible. The beach was all rocks, so it was actually pretty load … it was almost like a washing sound. From here the run goes off-road.
^The off-road trail was also pretty incredible. The trails actually went for miles, though I only did about an mile off-road. This was the most difficult ‘up’ I took and it was steep enough that I couldn’t actually run it. I remember the first time, I was a little unsure because I had no idea what was waiting at the top.
^This is the top. We also took a family hike up to the top for sunset, so there are some great photos on the @BrownsATW.
^After the off-road part, my path took me back to the ocean walkway. I knew when I hit this red path the ocean breeze was just seconds away.
^I hope I always remember these views. On every run, I’ve always had a smell. In London, it was cigarettes smoke. In Amsterdam, it was mirijuana. In Kiyv, it was body oder. Italy it was manure, but Sitges was the ocean breeze. Of course my favorite of the entire trip.
^Because my hip was hurting to badly, I used this as my stopping point in my run. I paused my run and spent a few mins stretching — I knew the the mailbox, I only had 1-mile to go.
^At the very end of the run, I hit a staircase. I could alway measure how hard I ran based on my ability to run the steps. It was a catch 22 really, because if I got to the steps and I was tired, I was annoyed that I could run the steps, BUT if I ran the steps easily, then I knew I had taken it too easy earlier in the run.
The house had a Nespresso, which I still don’t understand. I did try it … once, but it was a no-go for me. I was quickly on a coffee machine hunt in Sitges. It was a pretty easy find and cheap, so I was just fine. I also found super cute $2 coffee mugs that brought a little extra smile to my face for the month as well.
As for coffee beans, early in the month, I went to Coffee Tasting Tour through AirBNB Experiences. It was incredible — you can check it out on Instagram @kaffeinekicktours. After teaching us about beans & brewing techniques, Yan took us on a tour of a few coffee shops in Barcelona. The last coffee shop was EL MAGNÍFICO, which is literally the best coffee I’ve had in my entire life. Seriously, tops all other coffee of the trip. I got two bags of beans to brew at the house and one bag to take with us to Tanzania!
My favorite coffee shop in Sitges was Vita Brevis was our stop, I tried several coffee shops in Sitges, but Vita Brevis as by far my favorite. The coffee was great, and they had an excellent selection of treats, though, I always stuck with the Cinnamon Vanilla Break … which was really more like a pound cake.
I got back on track with self-care in Sitges. After Mirano, I was in desperate need of a manicure, and my hair was a hot mess!
First on the list was a manicure and pedicure. I found a great place right in town called Halong Nails. I actually went twice while in Sitges. The first time Nolan went with me. He had been asking for months to go with me and pick out my polish, so we went together. I ended up with Minecraft Diamond and Gold nails, but he LOVED them … and yes, I sported blue and gold nails for 2-weeks. Right before leaving, I went back for one last mani / pedi.
Second, my eyelashes were basically back to my normal lashes by the time we got to Sitges. I was fine with letting them go, but found a great salon right in town did lash extensions, and it was really reasonable, so I splurged and got lashes. A full set was $75 and a fill as only $25. The stylist did a great job, though I could tell the difference in the quality of the lashes.
Third, before leaving Sitges, I knew I needed to get my hair done. It has been about 10-weeks, so my hair was a hot mess. I researched and ended up going to Imperfect, which was a salon just a block from the apartment. I typically have gone to a salon where a single person does your hair, but at Imperfect, I had three different ladies; one lady colored my hair, one washed, and one cut. I like how it turned out — it’s going to have to last me awhile too!
What I loved about Sitges:
- We had an amazing Thanksgiving! The grocery stores were great and we found the Taste of the United States store in Barcelona, so I was able to pull off a pretty traditional Thanksgiving meal including; cranberry sauce, turkey, and pumpkin pie. I was little unsure how Thanksgiving would go not being in Indiana, but I have to say, it was a pretty perfect day!
- I think I was born to live next to the ocean. There is something calming about the ocean. I loved every minute of our time in Sitges.
- I cooked a lot and because it was a little chilly, I even got to enjoy a few fall favorites including Pumpkin Butter! The kitchen was really well stocked, so it was easy to feel at home, open a bottle of wine, turn on the music, and just cook a meal for the family.
What I didn’t love about Sitges:
- I’m keeping Laundry on the list! Eventually, I’ll have a washer and dryer again. As for Sitges, I opted for the laundry mat. There was one close to the house — less than a half mile, so I did laundry once a week so we had nice, fresh, fluffy clothes & towels.
Overall, Sitges has been the best overall-family experience. I couldn’t imagine a better place to have spent Halloween and Thanksgiving. Thanksgiving is by far my favorite holiday, so it was great to spend it in a town that allowed us to keep so many of our traditions.
Here are a few of my other favorite pictures from Sitges:
^I found Jif at the Taste of United States store in Barcelona … I was proud of myself that I made it to the car before opening the jar!
^On one of our day-dates, Jim and I found a Taco Bell and couldn’t resist!
^Sabrina, Jim’s sister, brought me Thanksgiving Blend Starbucks from the US when she visited us. It was just like being back in the US in November, homemade pumpkin butter and a cup of coffee in the mornings!
^I had so many great runs! Even when my hip hurt, I was itching to get outside and run next to the ocean!
^One of my favorite sunset pictures.
^Making Thanksgiving Dinner!
^I only did one morning run while in Sitges, I tried to catch the sunrise. Epic fail, because the horizon was so cloudy, but it was a great run!
^Since I spent so much time at the laundry mat, it seems appropriate to include a couple pictures. This is from my last laundry day in Sitges.