Saturday, March 5, 2016

Traveling Wild: Amazing Annecy

Annecy - photo by Stacy Reeves
Our visit to Annecy was a relaxing departure from big cities. Through a fundraiser, Stacy and Jason had won a vacation rental of this chalet in the French Alps, super close to Switzerland. The house was huge, with enough beds to sleep 22 people, not even counting couches. Four floors, three bathrooms, a wraparound deck, a pool and a trampoline. The kitchen was spacious and fully appointed. Jashley, Grant, Zach, Wilder and I all joined Stacy and Jason for the week and we had a really great time!
Here is it! just kidding. This is not the house. I realized I never took a photo of the house! But we could see this chateau from where we stayed :-)
We stopped at the market on our way to the house, and we got Wilder fed and in his own room (!!) and then joined the crew for a quick dinner of sausage and spaghetti. Jason and Stacy's luggage was 80% wine so we cracked open a "magnum" and went to town.

Magnum of wine!

After dinner, the Gulledges taught us a complicated card game called "pennies." We played the continuing game every night! That night was the first time Wilder slept all the way through the night on our trip. It was such a blessing.  

The next morning, we just hung out at the beautiful house all morning and went to Annecy for lunch after Wilder's first nap. 

We walked around the lake--so pretty! And ate lunch on the water.

Eating out with a baby can sometimes be stressful, especially in another country.  Service in restaurants is typically slow, which is hard when you are with a kid. I feel like there is a timer set when you arrive with a child before your kid says DONE. The food was really good, but it was 45 min before we were able to order. Wilder ate all his puffs before we even got drinks, and was fussy pretty much the whole time. It happens. We found that loud or outdoor restaurants were better for bringing baby, or cooking at home.

Looking at the canopy with Dad and Uncle Grant!

He did try and like fois gras though! That's really one of the benefits of baby-led weaning when traveling. You can let your child try new cuisine. For Zach and I, eating local is the best part of travel!

fois gras!
We drove to the city center and it was packed! Wilder was fussy in the car, but once we got out and I put him in the Tula, he calmed down. He fell asleep and he got a good nap!
Lake Annecy - photo by Stacy Reeves

Annecy - photo by Stacy Reeves

All of us walked around the enchanting city of Annecy. It reminded me of Venice, but it was so much cleaner. There were a lot of people around, but we had a great time. The guys tried a beer they really liked called Genepe, and we got ice cream and just enjoyed the scenery.

The men. Photo by Stacy Reeves

Boatwrights. photo by Stacy Reeves

holding mama's hand!
That evening after I put Wilder down, we cooked a truffle risotto. We drank great wine and played pennies all night.

The next morning. Zach, Wilder and I had breakfast and explored the grounds. When everyone got up, we played on the trampoline outside. We watched some tv and went swimming. Even Wilder! It was a bit chilly, so he didn't last too long. The grownups played in the pool and played pennies after I put him down for his nap.

Trampolines are so fun when you're learning to crawl! These photos are by Stacy Reeves

playing pennies on the patio!

When Wilder got up, we went exploring in the neighborhood. It was so beautiful!

That evening we made pork tenderloin wth green beans and just hung out. 

Sometimes, especially with kids, it's really good to plan low-key days. Wilder got his two good naps and he was refreshed. I can't recommend enough renting a flat or a home--if we were in a hotel room, it would not have been fun sitting quietly in the dark during naps!

Wilder found a flower with Aunt Jashley!

The next day we saw a beautiful sunrise. Zach, Grant, Jashley, Wilder and I all went back to Annecy to explore a bit more. We saw the Bridge of Love, walked around the lake and enjoyed the city with a lot less tourist traffic. We walked around the town's chateau, but didn't go inside because it was about time to head back for another Wilder nap.

The view from the top floor of the chalet

That evening, we had a pasta dish that was Jason's specialty, cracked open champagne and finished our game of pennies!


The next day we went to Geneva (next post), and the following day Jashley, Grant. Zach, Wilder and I left for Florence! We really enjoyed Annecy. It was a relaxing few days with dear friends, and it was nice to spend the time in such a comfortable home.

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