Monday, October 17, 2011

Una Fiabe Paesana (or our trip back to NJ for Columbus Day* Weekend)

C'erano una volta [once upon a time] there was a prince (watching tv in a bumbo chair that is way too small for him):

(clearly from Northern Italy),

and a princess:

(clearly of Southern Italy).

The prince and princess decided it was time that they left their southern kingdom and made the long and arduous (mostly on their parents) trek to visit the royal family.  They boarded an airplane where the Prince watched the same episode of Yo Gabba Gabba at least 10 times (but was probably fewer than that since the flight was only 2 hours) and the princess ate, slept, and was cute. 

When they arrived in the family's Northern Kingdom they were met be a Lady in Waiting (clearly the Italian genes did not win this war):

One of the many excursions planned for the prince and princess (in addition to banquets, hunting, and other royal past-times) was a trip to a royal playground:

At the playground the Lady in Waiting and the Court Jester were quite content to play with the prince.  They helped him walk across treacherous terrain.

They watched him as he conquered dangerous animals.

They helped him overcome any concerns about the lay of the land and the possible dangers it held so that he could truly enjoy himself.

And to thank his court the prince regaled them with melodies from olden times like "Mary Had a Little Lamb" and "Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star."

While the prince ran around the princess used this time to rest (she knew that this trip up north would be very taxing). 

All of this fun did not mean that the Lady in Waiting could let her style lapse.  Isn't she beautiful?  Oh, and she is also a cousin to the prince and princess... don't you see the resemblance?  No?  Don't worry... no one does but they are indeed blood related.

And no trip to the playground can be complete without some time on the royal slide (it's the biggest one in the playground).

Oh, and the Queen decided it was a perfect day to enjoy herself as well since the prince and princess were otherwise occupied.  Notice how she wears the crest of the Eagle?  It's in her blood.

And here is the Queen again... just meandering. 

Meanwhile, the princess decided that lying down wasn't her preference anymore and she made it known to the Queen Maga (known as Naga to the Prince) and the King Grandpa that she requested a change.  So, of course King Grandpa picked her up.  He can't resist the little princess... but who can?

The royal time at the park ended and we all adjourned back to the palace. 

The next day, we had asked the Duke of Scotland (my brother-in-law) if he would take a family portrait of us and some pictures of our kids (he is a fabulous photographer).  So, we chose the color blue as our color for the portrait and the Queen found this adorable onesie for the princess.

After a consultation, the princess and the King agreed that the princess was indeed the piu bellezza dello palazzo [most beautiful in the palace].

While up North, the Queen decided it was a perfect opportunity to see some old friends and reconnect with them at the country estate (Camp Matollionequay).  She felt it was such a gift to have people in your life with whom, no matter when you or how often you see them, you have an immediate bond.

On the final day of the vacation, the King, Queen, prince, and princess decided to venture to the Royal Zoo with the Ladies in Waiting, Court Jester, and the Duchess of Scotland. 

The prince was very excited to be hanging out with the Ladies in Waiting and the Court Jester.  So much so that it was often necessary for the King to hold the prince so a fotografia could be taken.

You may remember that one of the Queen's favorite things is to watch her children from the back, whether they are walking away or playing (and the other favorite thing is to be in the kitchen observing while everyone has fun at a party she is hosting... what can she say... she's an observer). 

And this "from behind" shot is extra special in that it also includes the Ladies in Waiting and the Court Jester.

As you can tell in this photo, the prince took quite a liking to the youngest Lady in Waiting. 

While at the Royal Zoo, the Prince decided to ride il treno [train] around in a circle and his court joined him.

And then it was time to leave the Royal Zoo because everyone, including the Queen... or especially the Queen... was exhausted.  On the way out the King and the Princess posed with a Royal leopard.

This whirlwind tour of the northern kingdom was just too much for the little princess who fell asleep where she was sitting.

But not too exhausting for the prince.  He met some new members of his court.

And he played until he passed out with his family.

But the consensus from the family was that it was nice to see everyone and good to be back with family.

And that it's always good to get to experience new things and look at them differently.

*For those of you not from the Northeast... Columbus Day is a big Italian holiday (because Cristoforo Colombo was Italian... Genovese to be exact) and there are actually parades and stuff... not in my family because we are fake and bake Italian but others take it very seriously... and that has nothing to do with this post but just wanted to share.

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