Jewel Allen



A little after 11 p.m. last night, I finished my 16th book, Her Billionaire Spy, for National Novel Writing Month. I’ve written 50k words in 5 days before, so it almost felt anti-climactic to celebrate writing one in 30. In light of so many other projects I was trying to […]

November in a Nutshell   Recently updated !




Can you say bucket list? Although in fairness, I didn’t know a gondola ride in Venice was on my bucket list until I went to Venice. Drew and I had the lovers’ seat, but we actually had two other ladies with us, Filipinas whom we met outside a building and […]

Italy Day 8 – Venice



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Ah, Venice. Drew and I arrived a little before two on a 90-minute ferry ride to San Marco, where our little hotel was located. Venice is only accessible by water. From the airport, one could either take the Alilaguna (the ferry we took), a water taxi for more euros, or a hired […]

Italy Day 7 – Venice


A great start for the day. Another beautiful sunrise. This time, as if custom-ordered, with a hot air balloon even! I could hear the gas ebb and flow as it fed the large flame. The passengers all waved down at us. What a fun way to see the Tuscan countryside! […]

Italy Day 6 – Lake Garda



My hubby and I walked out of our Airbnb at 6:45 to catch the sunrise over the Tuscan valley. We were rewarded by a slowly unfolding scene of serene, breathtaking beauty. Fertile fields, stretching as far as the eye could see, sloped to blue ridge mountains shrouded in mist. Meanwhile, […]

Italy Day 5 – Chianti Region, Tuscany


The sun started to set just as we drove the last ten minutes to our lodging for the night near San Gimignano…at the same time that I was trying to help Drew navigate our car using Google Maps. The leaves on trees, grape vineyards and farm fields were starting to […]

Italy Day 4: Tuscany



We were finally ready to catch the sunrise at 7:15, but we were just heading off to downtown in our Uber. I asked our driver if he spoke English. He said a little. “Spanish?” I said, hopeful. Affirmative. Turned out Alfonso was from Venezuela so he and I could at […]

Italy Day 3 – Rome