Tag Archives: hawaii


So last night my parents went out with my brothers to happy hour in Waikiki.  My parents are awesome.  Before they partied it up, they had to catch up with their peeps.  Check out Mom on her pink Crackberry and Dad (also known as iPod Bob for his rad playlists) on his iPhone.


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So, yes, I am (well I guess at this point the correct verb is was) a huge Lost fan. I loved all of it. The suspense, the characters, the magic, the setting.  So whenever I am in Hawaii and see a Lost landmark, I morph into  a “Lostie.” You know, one of those people who love TV trivia.

I know, I probably shouldn’t be putting this out there, but I just loved Lost!

Last month when I was in Hawaii, we passed this particular marina where the Searcher is moored every time we went to Honolulu.  You know, Penny’s ship that was searching for Desmond.  I finally stopped and had a ‘photo shoot’ with the boat.  It was fun, I mean it’s from Lost!

We had an elaborate plan in which my brother Zack was going to write “NOT PENNY’S BOAT” on his hand and we were going to take a photo of him under water. Just like when Charlie was about to drown and he discovered that it wasn’t Penny’s boat coming to rescue them….

We never followed through on our plan.  Maybe next time I’m there we will.  A Lost photo montage would be fun!


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As most of you have probably already read, last week I did a guest post exchange with one of my blogisphere friends, Liz, of a belle, a bean & a chicago dog. I thought I would re-post my article from her site today.  I started this blog as a cyber scrap book of sorts and I think that this post definitely belongs in the book.


A big part of my life the past few years has been the state-hopping Craig and I have been doing.  But believe it or not, I happen to have a bloggy friend, Brook, who is even MORE of a gypsy than me.

It is in the spirit of relocation that Brook and I are guest posting on each other’s blogs today!  Brook also happens to be the first guest writer I’ve had the honor of hosting!

Please welcome the lovely Brook, and make sure to relocate over to her place to check out my guest post, A Baby For Every State!


Greeting, BB&CD readers!  My name is Brook Dell’Anna and I write at baby&sofia.  I “met” Liz a few months ago when I started to read her hilarious blog.  We since have become blogisphere friends and have bonded over our shared experience of moving about the country.

My parents both hail from the Great Midwest. My mother was born and raised in Minnesota; my father is from Iowa.  They met at a small Catholic university in Iowa.  Not too much longer after that, they were married and I was born.  Not too much longer after that, my parents made the decision that they were ready to leave the Great Midwest.

It was the mid-1980s and the economy was not doing so hot.  After weighing all post-college opportunities, my dad decided to try out his sea legs and joined the Navy.  We moved across the country to New England, where Dad completed Officer Candidate School while Mom and I learned our way around Newport, Rhode Island.  It’s funny how I can still vividly remember the gorgeous trees that turned into the most brilliant shades of yellow, orange, and red that autumn.

From Newport, we moved all over the country for my Dad’s career.  We traveled up and down the East Coast, then hopped over to Hawaii, then back to the Mainland to live on the West Coast for awhile before returning back East. I ended up going to college in Maryland, and while I was in college, my family moved to Italy. Which was spectacular.  (Did I mention that is where I met my amazing husband?) Joining the Navy ended up being one of the best things that my Dad ever did for our family.

When I was in college, I realized that I have gypsy blood. I think now that it must be genetic.  My parents are still always looking for their next adventure; after Italy, they moved back to Hawaii, and are now planning the next chapter in their lives.  They are usually on the move, looking for a new, exciting experience to add to the history of their lives.

As an adult, I have lead a “Navy” lifestyle without ever actually joining.  During college, I spent as much time as I could in Europe, passing summer and winter vacations there and taking a semester to study in Rome. Ten days after graduation, with my Political Science degree in hand, I was back in southern Italy ready to take it all in.  I loved every minute of the chaos that is Naples and fell deeply in love with my Italian soon-to-be-hubby.

Living in Naples provided a unique set of challenges for me. I am, by nature, very adaptable; but I am also very opinionated. So I was open to Italian culture; I sincerely love both the language and the culture, and dedicated myself to absorb as much as possible. Which I did; I speak Italian fluently and am pretty well-versed in the intricacies of Italian life.   I mean, heck, I married a Neopolitan man.  You don’t get much more traditional than that.  I, however, also held onto my opinions.  Which was tricky.  I loved shopping at the local markets, teaching in an Italian school, and spending time with my in-laws. But I still held onto my personal belief system and sometimes projected it on those around me.  It is funny, though, because while I was there, I felt so strongly about holding onto my American values. Now that I am back in the States, I realized that I really did adopt an European outlook, and have managed to blend both the American and Italian influences in my life.  (As in I cook three fresh meals every day, but cannot make it to the market each day. Costo remains an important part of my life.)

After Naples, my husband and I moved to sunny southern California.  Which we love love loved.  The breezy, sun-shiny days that we spent strolling along the ocean were simply picturesque.  While we worked longer hours, we still managed to enjoy every moment of the sun and the ocean.

After about two years of California bliss, we decided to move yet again.  In March of this year, Giuseppe was offered a position at Iowa State University, so off we went.  The movers came and went, and then our road trip began. Giuseppe, five-month-old Paolo, and I drove across the country to our new home.  It was actually an amazing trip. We stopped in Arizona, at the Grand Canyon, Santa Fe, Denver, and Omaha. It was the Great American Road Trip for Italian hub-a-lub.  He loved it.

So, here we are, modern-day gypsies.  I was raised a gypsy, but my husband definitely was not. We’ll call him the gypsy-convert. Most of his family live within 20 minutes of each other, and moving to say, a neighboring city, is a very big deal.  (So you can imagine their surprise when we hopped over “the pond” and then over to the Pacific coast of America.)  While I do one day envision myself setting down in one place and growing some serious roots, I enjoy every moment of our gypsy adventure. I guess I can thank my parents for that.  Hopefully, Paolo will feel the same way one day.

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Complemese, Hawaiian style

Today, Friday, June 11, 2010, my little Paolo turned eight months old.  I could go on and on about how big he is (last time we checked he was at about 21 pounds!), just how much I can’t believe that he is already eight months old (it’s crazy!), and so close to turning one year old (in only four months!), but I will refrain.

It is so cliche` yet so true: They grow so quickly!

We are still living it up in Hawaii.  This morning, Justin, Paolo, and I drove over Kailua to do breakfast with Abby and little Harrison.  It was, as always, so much fun to see them.  Here the babies are last week, when we had dinner at Buzz’s; they are totally going to be buds:

How cute are they?

After breakfast, we came home. Paolo spent the afternoon playing with all of the toys from JoJo and BoBo, while I worked on my computer, sprawled on the same blanket.  After a long nap, the entire Main clan decided to head out for a nice dinner to celebrate Paolo’s eight-month-old complemese.

Well, mostly, we wanted to go out for a nice dinner, so we did.  The entire Main clan dined at Roy’s at Ko Olina. It was absolutely divine.  I think Paolo enjoyed himself.  I sure did. I especially enjoyed the fruity cocktails. I have never been much of a cocktail girl; I usually prefer a dry glass of wine or a crisp beer.  There is something about Hawaii that is bringing out the cocktail in me; I am totally loving them!

Here’s to my sweet baby!


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Paolo and I arrived to the Land of Aloha on Wednesday night.  And we are loving it. So far, our days have been filled with sunny walks, yoga classes, beach days,  lounging at the baby pool, and dear friends.  It is glorious.  Did I mention how smitten Paolo is to have his JoJo, BoBo, Uncle Zack, and Uncle Justin at his beck and call?  (Never dare to use the G-word in this family; as my parents put it, “We are too young to be called that.”)  He is going to be bored to have only me to play with when we go home to the Midwest.

I lived here when I was a little girl, and I have been back to visit several times in the past 15 or so years.  I know that this place is gorgeous, but every time I visit, I am so taken with its beauty.  Here’s to two more weeks of sun and aloha.

(Photos to come.)

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Paolo and I are headed for a vacation in Paradise next month.  We fly to Honolulu on June 2nd and will stay for about three weeks.  My parents are so excited to see the baby, whom they have not seen since they came out for his Baptism in January.  (Well, my mom hasn’t seen Paolo since then. Dad came out to California on business in March and stayed with us for the weekend, which was fun.)  It will be a great trip; we always have an amazing time when we are in Hawaii. Here is a family photo from last Thanksgiving, when we celebrated my dad’s retirement from the Navy and start of his new career with the Department of Defense in style with a giant party (complete with a DJ, Polynesian dancer, and photographer):

In this photo, Paolo is only six weeks old. It really is incredible how much he’s grown since then.  And it’s “incredible” how I am still NOT back to my pre-baby weight. It’s really annoying, but I am trying to accept that this is obviously a slow process for me.  I had hoped to be beach-ready this summer. But I’m not. So, instead, it’s time to be creative.  I ordered a Magicsuit and cover-up from Victoria’s Secret Swim.  Oh how I hope it’s magical.  Hopefully it will make going to the beach a little less painful.  I mean this model looks like she’s having a grand time wearing this “magic” suit….But then again, there is not much to control on her 103-pound frame.  We’ll see how it works for me.

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My sister-in-law, Cristiana, snapped these photos of Paolino while she was in London and we were here, in the heartland of the USA.  Isn’t Skype amazing?

Our family is pretty much spread out all over the globe. My parents live in Hawaii, which is exactly 12 time zones away from Giuseppe’s parents, who live in Naples, Italy.  My baby brother still lives with my parents (he’s 14) and so does Giuseppe’s (he’s 17).  My other brother lives in the glorious city of San Diego, and Giuseppe’s sister lives in the gorgeous city of London.  Then, there are all of the extended relatives.  (My parents both come from families with 9 children each; Giuseppe’s parents have 7 siblings total.)  So you can imagine the chaos when trying to organize family reunions…or even telephone calls.

Oh the glory of videochat. We are absolutely addicted to it. Paolo even loves it. How many 6-month-olds do you know who recognize the ringing sound that Skype makes? Mine sure does. He starts to wave his arms and legs around when he hears it.  Then the drooling and giggling starts when he hears one of his grandparents’ voices.

Having this kind of technology at our fingertips has been a true blessing.  While our families are all spread out, we can still retain the close relationships similar to those  families who live in close proximity to one another.  Granted, it is different from actually being with that family member; but it is amazing to be able to virtually talk to them in person.

This all makes me think back to my experience, being the daughter of a naval officer and always living far from our relatives.  It was hard to be away, but at the same time, it made me appreciate the time that I spent with my relatives on special occasions.  When I compare this to the experience of my child, it is incredible.  I know that he will value beyond measure the time that he will pass with his relatives, but being able to keep those relationships fresh via videochat is simply amazing.  I know that our parents love being able to watch him grow, even when they live across the planet.  Technology today is truly amazing.  (Should I say ‘amazing’ one more time…? I really think Skype is AMAZING.)


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