“The cure for anything is saltwater – sweat, tears, or the sea.” – Isak Dinesen

For me, Hawai’i always brings a wistful feeling. I don’t often look to the past through rose-colored glasses, but its hard not to remember my years there without longing. When I moved away from home, it was here where I started to find home within myself. Hawai’i is where I started discovering my true nature. I was not who I thought I was. It ended up being so much more than just going off to college. In many ways it felt like a spiritual awakening. I was closed-off and sheltered in my emotional and world views. It was here that I began to open, and was challenged and shaken to my core in some startling ways. I realized how little I knew.

The Mana of the islands is undeniable. I’ve always been drawn to them as are many others. When I was in elementary school my family planned a trip to Hawai’i. This was special for us, not something we did. I was so excited, every night I went to bed dreaming about it. When people ask me how I decided on my school, I don’t know how to answer, or how I ended up here. I don’t remember making the decision. Somehow I got a flyer in the mail and that just started the inevitable. My mom said she saw the look in my eye and knew I was going.

I have such a sense of nostalgia, so many wonderful memories, and admittedly some I try to forget – it was college after all.  This is the time frame that Ezra and I met and fell in love. We would talk for hours and hours on the phone. We racked up quite a lot of minutes on our phone cards Hawai’i —> Japan. I’ll always remember his first of many visits – he talked so much about his mom, whom I still had never met. He talked about her so lovingly and said how much she would love Hawai’i, love the flowers! It’s sad that she never got to see it, that instead we are here spreading her ashes.

Dave and Laurie had planned to celebrate their anniversary on this trip. Instead Dave decided to take all of us. With so much history here, I had some mixed feelings to be back. On one hand it’s perhaps the place I love most in the world, but on the other we were here without Laurie.

After an adventurous flight, and almost getting stuck in San Francisco, it was literally a miracle that we all arrived to Kauai that same night. But we arrived just in time to get the kids to bed and have a drink.

This was the first flight we’d been on together.

We spent the majority of the trip in Kauai, on Anini beach. Dave rented a house for us right across from the ocean – it was an incredible location. Because Indra was still so little, and naps tended to rule our schedule, we took it slow. We couldn’t do all the activities, but we were fine with that. It was nice to just hang around in such a beautiful setting. I could have just stayed at the beach all week relaxing.

Indra’s first time touching Mother Ocean.

Now, this is how you vacation!

Indra loved the beach, she was so excited. Walking this way…Now going that way…So grateful we could all be together.Just a girl and her Bop.

Waking up at dawn may not be my preference, but we had some magical mornings together. Just the two of us, on the beach, watching the sun rise. When I look back on Indra’s childhood, these will be some of my favorite memories.

At the slightly underwhelming Waimea canyon.                    

I love this picture, but please ignore all the cleavage.

An hour on the beach by myself. What a treat!

Introducing Indra to tropical fruits.Nursing a naked, salty babe. Doesn’t get much sweeter.

At the luau.

Just napping at the beach like a local.

More gorgeous sunrises with this beach babe.

            Now on to Oahu for a couple days. Love the photobomb Soren!I hadn’t been to Hanauma Bay in years, we had hours of fun!

Just happened to nurse Indra on this bench donated by Obama to “Mothers Everywhere.”

It was a little late in the day to properly experience Lanikai, but I was happy to visit a beach that was special to me. It was strange to be back on Oahu for such a short time. I was sad not to have more time to visit my favorite spots. But honestly, it was more than that, I wanted to stay. So did Ezra. We were talking about coming back over the winter, and we regularly scheme about buying property. Hawai’i is the place I’ve felt the most like myself.

Indra had her first taste of sugar on this trip. Sampling the dragonfruit sorbet. But I think she prefers coconut snow cones.

On the North Shore watching the waves on our last full day before heading home.

Inventive baby cage.

I hold out hope of living here again. We dream of raising our kids on the island – someplace where life is slower and more simple. Where you walk outside barefoot and most of your clothes are bathing suits and sarongs. But obviously its more than that. The values we hold dear are of importance here too. If only we could talk the whole family into moving, then the plan would be perfect.


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