Aloha & Arrivederci

Aloha! To say it’s “been a while” would be an understatement. It’s been a lonnnnng while since I’ve written a post on Artistry By Adele. I started this blog as a way to escape my day-to-day and have a creative outlet I could look forward to. I was working in a job that wasn’t a right fit for me, I was living in the suburbs in a city I grew up in and desperately needed a break from, and this blog gave me a place I could explore my thoughts and future plans.

Fast forward FOUR whole years and life is quite different. My husband and I quit our jobs, sold our house, got rid of most of our belongings, and left our comfortable lives for a new adventure in Hawaii. Since moving we started a business, met new people, tried new things, explored our island, and have traveled to new and exciting places.

Photo Cred: Miriam Sermonne Photographie 


Sometimes life is hard this far away from friends and family. We miss out on major family events and all the little things we’d love to be around for…like our nieces and nephews growing up in the blink of an eye. We miss graduations and sometimes weddings or other functions we would love to attend. But all in all, this was the best decision we ever made. We’ve had more fun and excitement in these years than I could have imagined. We’ve met amazing people who have changed our lives in this short time and I really believe that we’ve changed lives with the women’s fitness/lifestyle program we started on Oahu. We will always wish we could be near the people who mean the most to us, but living a life you aren’t happy in is never the answer if you have the chance to change it. No matter if we stay here forever, or if we move back to the mainland at some point, I believe I’ll look back on these times as some of the happiest of my life. If you told me four years ago that I would be living on an island, doing headstands on a paddle board in the ocean for fun, I definitely wouldn’t have believed you. 

Photo Cred: Yoga Kai Paddle Hawaii


Since my last blog post all that time ago, I’ve often thought about coming back to this community. I’ve thought about what I would blog about….fitness (my professional life), nutrition and vegetarian cooking (one of my passions since I cut meat and dairy out of my life when we moved here) or just about life in Hawaii. I guess I was so consumed with enjoying my life here that I never found (or took) the time to sit down and write about it.


But here I am, all this time later, missing my blog, missing the community and really missing photography. I’m still loving life on this beautiful island, but my passion for travel and photography was re-sparked with a few major trips we’ve taken since our move. Last year we visited New York twice, we spent a month traveling around Europe in Italy, Norway, Spain & Iceland and this summer, we’re heading back there again! This time with a week on the Greek Islands and a week in Sardinia, Italy. While researching our trip, and looking back at my old photos, I realized I NEED TO START BLOGGING AGAIN!

So here goes nothing! I’ve created a new blog, Aloha and Arrivederci where I plan to share my travel stories and photos, as well as the best moments of my life here on Oahu. If you’re interested, go check it out and follow for blog posts via email. You can also check out some of my favorite photos on my new travel instagram account, @alohaandarrivederci

Advertisements

15 Reasons to Run

Good morning friends! Today I am feeling so incredibly positive I just had to share. I am loving the Runner’s World Running Streak Challenge because it is keeping me active and motivated every single day. The challenge is to run at least one mile every day from Thanksgiving to New Years. Some days I run just over a mile, and some days I run over three. Hopefully soon some of those longer runs will end up getting closer to 5 or 6. The best part about the challenge for me is there is never a good enough excuse why I can’t run ONE mile. There is always 10 minutes in the day to fit this in, and once you get out there, you might want to go further. Either way, it is helping me keep health , fitness and running on my mind and in my schedule. If you haven’t started yet, it’s not too late! You can just make up for the missed days by increasing your first few runs by a few miles.

I am also loving my Kaia family (as always) and for the first time (probably in my entire life) I am confident that I can get through this holiday season without getting into an unhealthy rut and gaining the usual 5-10 pounds I always seem to pack on during this time. Click here to check if you have a Kaia in your area, I promise you won’t be disappointed!

My husband and I will be visiting family in Hawaii for Christmas this year and I am really looking forward to the hikes and long walks while we’re there. I plan to participate in the Running Streak every day and am really looking forward to the beautiful views along the way.

These photos are from a hike we did last summer when we were in Hawaii and I can’t wait to do it again! Maybe this time we’ll run the stairs :)

Happy running everyone!

On The Coast

My husband and I had the best weekend celebrating our 2 year wedding anniversary on the Northern California Coast near Jenner, CA a few weekends ago. We stayed at a cute little hotel, called the Timber Cove Inn and had an amazing ocean view. We went hiking, wine tasting, listened to live music, ate a few delicious meals, and even roasted marshmallows for breakfast one morning. I loved this little mini vacation and I would go back any time!

The weather was perfect with no fog in sight until the day we left. This was just what we needed- a nice, relaxing weekend to be outdoors and have fun together.

 View from our room

S’mores for breakfast

If you go to Jenner, make sure you stop at Cafe Aquatica. It’s delicious! This was one of 4 different meals we tried there (we ate there for lunch two days in a row). Hummus sandwich may not sound all that great, but trust me, it was delish! And check out that view.

Pumpkin Spice Fig Muffin. O.M.G.

We found a wonderful place to wine taste- Fort Ross Winery. The tasting room was brand new, the view was spectacular and the people were wonderful. We would definitely go back!

A Beautiful Day in Napa

Northern California has some of the most beautiful travel destinations in the world. We are so lucky to live so close to so many beautiful places. A few weeks ago our friends took us to Napa to barrel taste their wine. They started a wine company, MSix Wine Group and are in the early stages of creating delicious wines. We drove to Napa for the day, toured the amazing wine cave where they are storing their wine, enjoyed salami and crackers while sharing a bottle of wine with a beautiful view, and then took a tour through the vineyards to see their wine grapes. It was a beautiful day in wine country and I was happy to capture some of the beauty with my photos.  

Our gorgeous view for the afternoon

Our expert tour guide for the day :)

Straight from the barrel!

Chardonnay grapes

BFFs

Chi-Town

A few of my favorite photos from my trip to Chicago. How can you not love downtown Chicago?

Monterey

In two weeks I’ll be back visiting one of my favorite places in California. Not many beaches can beat what you find in Monterey! I can’t wait to get back there with two of my oldest friends for a much needed girls weekend while we plan my best friend’s wedding :)

Here are a few photos from my last visit.

A Christmas Hike

Since I was about 13 we have been celebrating Christmas and opening all our gifts on Christmas Eve. The last few years we have been celebrating Christmas with my husband’s family a week in advance, which leaves us without plans on Christmas Day. So this year I figured we should do something a little different. We ended up driving a few hours to Point Reyes for a beautiful 8.2 mile hike. Most of the hike was green and full of  trees and wilderness until we ended up at a beautiful overlook of the ocean. This may have to be a new tradition! Here are some photos from the trip. You can click on the images to see more detail.

What non-traditional thing did you do for Christmas this year?

Destruction in Cinque Terre

Today I read some very sad news. The villages of Italy’s Cinque Terre were hit by a horrible rain storm that caused flash floods. So far I have read that six people died. Restaurants, shops and homes have been flooded and destroyed. People have been evacuated by sea and many people will be homeless.

This photo was taken from The Globe and Mail.

Natural disasters happen all the time and each time  my heart goes out to the people who have to live through them. This is the first time a natural disaster has happened in a place I have visited and truly love. I blogged about Cinque Terre a few months in my excitement to go back and visit soon.  I visited Cinque Terre when I was studying abroad in college and instantly fell in love with the area and decided it was one of my favorite places in the world. I was in the middle of planning a trip back there with my husband in May of 2012 when I stumbled upon the sad news.

Photo from the National Post

Cinque Terre consists of 5 little towns, or villages– Monterosso al Mare, Vernazza, Corniglia, Manarola, and Riomaggiore. When I visited in 2007, I hiked through the towns with a backpack on my back and my camera in hand. I was amazed by these little towns. They had so much charm and character and such beautiful, beautiful views of the Mediterranean. Italian music played as we walked through the towns and enjoyed the scenery. I felt like I was in a scene from a romantic Italian movie.

These photos were all taken on my 2007 trip in Italy.

As an out-of-shape college student walking through these towns I remember wanting to give up and hop on the train to the last town, essentially skipping the three towns in the middle. It was hot, I was tired, and I was carrying a huge bag on my shoulders. The sun was beating so strongly on us and of course we were not dressed appropriately for the trip. I was wearing heavy long jeans and an uncomfortable tank top and sweating like crazy. But my roommate at the time and I decided to deal with the heat and heavy bags because we wanted to be able to say “I hiked through ALL of Cinque Terre” and that is exactly what we did. We didn’t want to miss any part of these towns and now, more than ever, I am glad we didn’t quit.

We kept going until we reached the very end of the last town, Monterosso, and we could see the sparkling Mediterranean Sea. We hadn’t brought our swimsuits but the water looked amazing. We stopped at the first little street vendor we could find and bought over-sized t-shirts and towels. We changed and ran into the water. It was the best feeling to know we kept going until the end and were able to enjoy a little relaxation before hopping on a train back to Torino where we lived.

In the latest article I read, the Mayor of the small town said “Monterosso no longer exists.” I can’t imagine what it must look like now. It’s hard to picture the beautiful place I visited being destroyed by flooding.

My thoughts go out to the people of these little towns and all the other areas in Italy who have been affected by this natural disaster. You had a beautiful place to call home and I hope you can rebuild your lives shortly.

Have you been to Cinque Terre? What was your experience like?

You can read more about this on CNN.

Hearst Castle at Night

Like I blogged about in my post, Fancy Schmancy, my husband and I were recently invited to the Friends of Hearst Castle Enchanting Evening on our anniversary weekend. It was a beautiful black tie dinner by the Neptune Pool. I have been waiting for the professional photos to appear on the website, but in the meantime I thought I’d share a few that we took from my iphone and my husband’s blackberry. Of course, they didn’t turn out to be amazing photos, but you’ll get the point. It was an amazing evening!

The centerpieces were beautiful, even if my photos didn’t do them justice! White star-gazers and lots of greenery.

Synchronized swimmers came out during dinner and put on an amazing show, twice! I don’t know how they got in that pool- it was SO cold out! I took so many photos of the Neptune Pool while we were there. Even in the fog and the cold it was such a beautiful backdrop to dinner.

Of course I took a photo of my favorite part of dinner- the dessert! We had three small bites and they were all delicious. My favorite of the three was the mocha flavored ice cream sandwiched in between two chocolate cookies. Yum! This is us at the end of the night. We were FREEZING but having such a great time. (sorry for the blurry photo-blackberry in the fog)

I Heart Travel, Part X, Chicago

Here are some of my favorite photos from my last trip to Chicago, which sadly, was 3 years ago. I have family in Chicago and wish I could visit more often. All of these photos were taken with my little Sony point and shoot.

My dad is a die-hard White Sox fan and wasn’t happy that I chose to go to a Cubs game while I was visiting. I sent him photos of myself standing in front of the Wrigley field sign just to make him cringe ;)

We went on the architectural tour of Chicago and it was such an amazing tour. I highly recommend it to anyone who hasn’t been to Chicago before!

Millennium Park is such a fun place to walk around.

“The Bean.” You can see the whole city scape in this amazing shiny sculpture.

I can’t wait to go back! Chicago is one of my favorite cities in the world!