Archive for the ‘family’ Category

Traveling & Making Connections   1 comment

Traveling & Making Connections
Over the past six months, I have been traveling domestically to visit friends and relatives. By staying with them or sharing a meal, I re-connect with loved ones near and far. Before I leave, I make arrangements to visit with different friends and relatives, asking if I could stay with them for a night or two. Then I rent a car and drive from house to house, just spending quality time with them. I don’t want them to go out of their way to entertain me or take me site-seeing in their area. I tell them that I just want to hang out with them in their daily life: chores, errands, soccer games or whatever they are doing, I would just go along with them.

Last October, 2018 I flew to the Bay area, because Hawaiian Airlines had a sale. I visited with Paul and Sigi in Point Richmond and went to a Halloween party with them. Then to Vacaville to stay with the Golden family, who were renovating their house. On to Lafayette to stay with Lovelle, my taiko friend and lastly to Monterrey to stay with my Pahoa HS classmate, Daniel and his wife Toki. (Sad note: I am so glad I spent time with them, because Daniel just died recently.)

Sigi and me at Halloween party

Sigi and Paul in Richmond Point party

Diane & Bronce in their unfinished kitchen in Vacaville

Chad and Cody at home

Lorin, Phil and Lovelle in Lafayette. Lorin and Lovelle are taiko friends.

Toki and Daniel in Monterrey. Daniel just died in May 2019.

In November 2018, I made a last-minute trip to LA, when I learned that Yvette and family would be in Manhattan Beach visiting Joe and Diane Aronesty for Thanksgiving. So I booked a flight and stayed with the Aronesty’s. We got to have dinner with Norway trip friends, Patti and Shunji, who live in Torrance. We also spent a day with Erik’s relatives from San Diego and New Mexico, going bowling and having fun with them. Mostly, we just went to the beach every day.

Diane, Yvette and Marlowe in Manhattan Beach

Thai dinner with Shunji and Patti and the Aronesty family

In January 2019 I flew to Long Beach airport, a new route for Hawaiian Airlines. Patti & Shunji picked me up and took me home to Torrance, where I stayed for 2 days. Then they kindly and generously loan me their car and I drove to Culver City to visit my cousin Ann and her family there! It was my first visit with Annie and her family and I had a blast getting to know her and her kids and grandkids! Then I drove to northern LA, near Glendale, where my childhood friends, Bev and Ethel Jane (AKA Ettie) live. I then drove to Fountain Valley to visit my former student, Richard & Debbi Ross and then to Nancy Bauer’s home in Fullerton. (I forgot to take a photo of the two of us.) She had just lost her husband, Jim, and we shared experiences. I ended up back in Torrance staying with Roger’s high school classmates, Reto and Nani. The next day they dropped me off at Long Beach airport.

Shunji, Patti, me, Sharon and Wenshing having dinner. We met on a tour of Norway in August 2019.

Cousin Annie and hubby Trace in Culver City

Downtown LA with Annie

Bev Nii in LA

Ettie Nii in LA

Debbi and Richard in Fountain Valley

Nancy w/Jim before he passed.

Nani & Reto in Torrance

In March, I flew to Seattle and first stayed with Phil & Jane in Renton. They are Pearl City HS classmates of Yvette. Then on to my cousin’s daughter, Elda in Bellevue. Then I drove to Federal Way to stay with 2 young doctors, Eve and Jenn, who took me to a friend’s birthday party in Bremerton, and to get a Korean massage the next day. I had lunch with Brett Hudner and his girlfriend Lauren. The next day, I met Wendy & Bridgett for lunch in downtown Seattle. Lastly, I stayed with TJ and Pam Bauer who live in a lovely home on Lake Tapps.

Phil & Jane Pearl City HS class of ’84 now live in Renton

Elda in Bellevue

Jennifer me and Eve on ferry to Bremerton

Lauren and Brett at Korean lunch

Wendy & Bridgett used to work for Symetra, now at Strategic Planning Partners in downtown Seattle

Pam and me in their living room. Zander is photo bombing behind me

TJ & me before he left on a business trip.

In April, I flew to NYC to visit with YENM (Yvette, Erik, Noakai, Marlowe). We celebrated Marlowe’s 5th birthday at a bowling alley party. I took a bus trip to Laurel, MD to visit cousin Gary & Sally. Every visit they have their kids and grandkids come for dinner. Then to Severn, MD to visit Sharmaine, David, Colin and Addison. (I forgot to take a photo of the Hornsby family!) Sharmaine is my cousin Brian Kimura’s daughter. I returned to NY and spent another weekend with YENM, going to another birthday party, this time at a Karaoke room in Korea town. Then I stayed with Shari Tamashiro in a nearby hotel. We spent 4 days eating our way around the city, going to art museums, getting massages and seeing 4 broadway shows.

Date with Marlowe to see broadway show.

Marlowe’s bowling birthday party

Matt & Audrey w/Layla, Grandma Sally, w/Quinn sleeping in front, Billy and Kat w/Lily and Grandpa Gary on far right. In Laurel, MD.

Hornsby’s new home in Severn

Sharmaine waiting for bulbs to bloom in spring

East Village crawl: we went to 3 restaurants! Noakai, Marlowe and Grandma Lari

Shari and I enjoying omakase dinner at Tori Shin.

Shari and I at Whitney Museum

We loved the flower show at Macy’s

In June, I flew to Denver to visit my sister Christine and her family in Boulder. The first night, I stayed in Fort Collins with the Wortmans. They always invite their kids to come to dinner whenever I visit and I have watched their grandkids, Marshall and Audrey, grow up through the years. Chris and I flew to Omaha for a 3-day visit with Kaitlin, Shaun, Kaia(3) and Liam(1). Kaitlin is cousin Brian’s youngest daughter, sister of Sharmaine in MD. It was my first time to Omaha, and Kaitlin with her 2 kids, took us to Old Market with cobblestone streets, to the fabulous zoo, to Lauritzen Garden, to Bob Bridge, and more. Back in Boulder, we visited Brian and Desmonne and played with Coen(2), went to the Farmer’s Market, visited Shirley Stokoe in Denver, had dinner at Riffs with Leslie-taiko friend from Denver(no photo), and I helped Chris cook Father’s Day dinner.

Tom and Tyke Wortman, Fort Collins

Audrey, Marshall, Brian and Lori-daughter of Tom and Tyke

Kaia, Kaitlin and Liam at the museum in Omaha

Chris and I on the Bob Bridge over the Missouri River on the state line.

Playing with Coen in his ball pit.

Grandma Chris with Coen

Fathers Day: Phil, Des w/Coen, me, Chris and Brian

Posted June 29, 2019 by lariyasui in family, USA

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Lari’s 2018 Christmas News   23 comments

2018 Holiday Greetings from Lari

This was a year of big change for me. In April, moved from my Pearl City house to a 2-bedroom condo in Honolulu. It was a huge job downsizing from my 5-bedroom, 3-bath, 10-closet house where we lived for almost 50 years.    My new address: 1325 Wilder Ave #9 in Honolulu, HI 96822.  Email: lariyasui@gmail.com

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Willy & Sue Okimoto invited me over for a farewell dinner with my neighbors, Flora Nohara and Lisa & Wayne Shibata. Chef Willy cooked a delicious dinner for us! I miss my wonderful Pearl City neighbors. Houdini misses me and I miss him since moving to town.

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Houdini

Houdini & me

But now I save on time, gas and mileage on my car because everything is so close and convenient being in town. I leased my first luxury car, a Q5 Audi SUV. I am still learning how to use all the high-tech computer features on 2 screens.

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John Ohtani from Audi delivered my new Q5

In January, I went to Tuscany with Leanda Santos, and since it was her first time in New York, we toured a few sites in NY city before and after going to Italy, staying with Yvette and family in Battery Park City.

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Leanda & I enjoyed Cinque Terre in Italy

Then in early April, I took Yvette, Erik, Noakai and Marlowe to Osaka, Nara and Kyoto.

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Riding rickshaws in Arashiyama bamboo forest

When I returned home from Japan, Garrett Mozolic and his brothers of Mo Movers moved me into the condo. I didn’t finish settling into my condo and flew off to meet Mary Ann Kadooka in Barcelona. After Spain, with help from a few friends, I got my apartment all arranged and organized with paintings hung, and cabinets and closets filled.

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In May, (I’m a Taurus) friends and family celebrated my 75th birthday with 4 parties!

Party #2 at Sunrise

Party #2 at Sunrise

Most of the summer, I stayed home. Yvette and Marlowe came to stay with me (in my condo for the first time) in July. Noakai and Erik couldn’t make it to Hawaii this year.  In August, I flew to New York and took Noakai on a 12-day tour of Norway which included a cruise up the coast to the Arctic Circle.

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My son Ryan, Kara, Jensen, Madi and Allysen moved from Mililani to Salt Lake to live with Kara’s mom, Kathy Iwao. Jensen is finishing his senior year at Mililani HS, Madi started 9th grade at Moanalua HS and Ally is at Salt Lake Elementary. Ryan is especially happy to have a short drive to Pearl Harbor Shipyard. In September, we celebrated Ryan’s 50th birthday and Ally’s 9th birthday at Hilton Hawaiian Village for the weekend.

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In October my sister Christine and brother Bruce met me in Tokyo, and we flew to Kumamoto on the southern island of Kyushu to visit my mother’s Hokada relatives. My cousin Fred and family and my nephew Kazu with 2 daughters joined us there. We all had a wonderful time meeting and getting to know our Hokada cousins’ families, who entertained us royally. We scattered some of Sue and Kongo’s ashes at the Hokada gravesite. Fred’s wife Fumiko (from Nagoya) translated for us so we could communicate with our Kumamoto relatives.

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Hokada relatives in Kumamoto made a fabulous dinner for us in their beautiful home.

Then Fred left and cousin Elvis Kimura came to meet us and Kazu drove 7 of us in a van to Kurokawa onsen  village and Yufuin onsen town along the way and finally to Oshima Island in Yamaguchi Prefecture. We visited Okabatake family (our Kimura relatives) and visited the Kimura grave, where we scattered more of Sue and Kongo’s ashes. They hired a translator to help us communicate. Okabatakes have a large orange grove and let us pick tangerines, which we took with us for the remainder of our trip back to Tokyo.

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It was Bruce’s first time to Japan, and Christine’s second time. We did some site seeing in Tokyo before returning home. 

At Halloween, I visited different friends, house-hopping in the Bay Area. For Thanksgiving, I stayed at Aronesty’s home in Manhattan Beach, LA with Yvette, Erik, Noakai and Marlowe who flew in from New York.

My “townie” life in Honolulu is very busy with all kinds of activities! Theater, luncheons, dinners, festivals, movies, Apple Store classes, Red-Light therapy, facials, massages, pedicures, karaoke bars, farmer’s markets, and more.

I am on the Wilder Tower condo Board and attend meetings concerning our condo. I am an “Okinawan at Heart” member of the Itoman Club and help plan their activities. I still work part time for Chinen&Arinaga Financial Group.

In October, I attended the Hawaii Food and Wine Festival for 5 days at various venues around town. It was exciting to meet many celebrity chefs at their booths. I am a member of Hawaii International Film Festival (HIFF) and in November, I was at Dole Regal theaters for 10 days and saw 36 movies using my festival pass. On Veterans’ Day, I loved the fantastic Bruno Mars concert at Aloha Stadium with 30,000 of my closest friends.

To all my friends and families, may you have a wonderful and blessed holiday season! For more details about my trips, please read my travel blog by scrolling down on this page or clicking the archives on the left side.

Love and aloha, Lari

Posted December 9, 2018 by lariyasui in Christmas news, family

2017 Denver in September   Leave a comment

2017 Sept. Denver
Sept 25 to Oct 2, 2017

My sister Christine is a new grandma, so I had to visit them in Boulder to see this golden child. Brian and Desmonne Bennett named their son Coen who was born in Dec 2016. So he wasn’t a year old when I first saw him. I took the bus from Denver Airport to Boulder, where Desmonne picked me up. It was very cheap and an easy one-hour ride. I stayed with Desmonne and Brian because Christine and Phil had not returned from their trip to Italy. First things first: I had to eat at Riff’s. The next day, I drove to Westminster to visit Shirley at home. We had a lovely visit before I drove back to Boulder. Christine’s 2 besties, Debra and Leslyn came over for dinner. We had a great time chatting. And of course, Coen was the center of attention!

Grandma Lari meets Coen for the first time!

The Bennetts at their Pearl Street front door.

Debra, Brian and Leslyn: 2 Aunties visit!

On Thursday, I drove to Fort Collins to visit Lynda at her friend’s home and we had breakfast and caught up with each other. Then I drove to Wortman’s and stayed with Tom and Tyke. Their daughter, Lori and her family all came for dinner. We had Tom’s famous meat loaf and Tyke made baked butternut squash –yummers!

Brian and Tom in back. Lori, Tyke and Lari in the middle Audrey and Marshall in front

Tyke taking Kennadie to the vet.

I visited Robbie Stokoe at his bioengineering lab.

After breakfast on Friday, Tyke and I took their dog Kennadie to the Vet hospital to be checked. Then I drove over to visit Robby Stokoe at his bioengineering lab at CSU. Shirley’s grandson is a grad student there! I knew him since he was a baby! Then I drove back to Boulder.

Coen in Roger’s silk kimono

The whole gang at the Boulder Farmer’s Market on Saturday: Lari, Brian, Desmonne w/Coen, Christine and Phil.

On Saturday, Chris and Phil picked me up and we went to the Boulder Farmer’s Market. Desmonne, Brian walked over with Coen in his stroller. We relaxed in the afternoon. The next day, we had lunch at Riffs then we went shopping.
Monday morning, I caught the bus to Denver Airport to go home.

Posted June 25, 2018 by lariyasui in family, USA

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