DIY PLAYHOUSE

DIY PLAYHOUSE
DIY PLAYHOUSE

Leave her Wild

Leave her Wild
Leave her Wild

Let's talk camera

Let's talk camera
Camera 101

Five Years

This past weekend the hubs and I celebrated five years of marriage. Can't hardly believe its been five years as time has flown - especially when adding a wild haired toddler into the mix. We cruised to Half Moon Bay for the day and checked many things off the bucket list. Which included Shark Fin Cove in Davenport - which I will say was pretty cool. But slightly treacherous with a three year old (and those damn no dog signs) so we viewed it from the top and called it complete.




From there we ventured to a beach with a secret access point we remembered from a time we went before becoming parents. The route was a little errr sketchy at some points but we made it out there. It's a great beach for kids since the ocean breaks nicely on the shore. P had an absolute BLAST. That is until Finn knocked her over and mama had left all her spare clothes in the car. Whoops!






After we left the beach with our small human wrapped in a towel in a hiking pack. We headed back to the car in search of a pumpkin patch. Half Moon Bay is pretty well known for their pumpkin patches so we knew we were bound to stumble upon some gems. We decided to pull into Arata Pumpkin Farms when we saw it off the side of the road. It was giant, filled to the brim with activities and almost a little too overwhelming. That and the fact the sun was still too high in the sky for my liking - but we hopped on in and had some fun.




We were preparing to head back home after a very full day and then there it was.  A "pick them where they grow" pumpkin patch. And I was like HOLD UP - there is no way we are driving past this place. We have zero places like this where I live and I am always so jealous when I see photos in fields like this. Bonus - you could see the ocean. So I really couldn't have picked a better way to end the day. Plus it was an hour before sunset - only the best time to take photos. Me = winning.







It was the perfect way to celebrate five years of marriage together and has now given us a new yearly tradition. I can hardly believe there will be another mini Parker in tow this time next year! 
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Ripple

Like many of us, the tragic events that unfolded on the evening of October 1st in Las Vegas have left me feeling a great magnitude of sadness. For the victims, for the survivors, for Las Vegas, for the state of Nevada, for the United States and in reality for the entire world. How these same types of events seem to keep happening seems unreal. The list seems as if it will never stop growing and the countless faces and stories of the people it takes with them only seem to multiply.

Columbine. Virginia Tech. Aurora. Sandy Hook. Charleston. San Bernadino. Orlando. Las Vegas. 

While I can only speak on behalf of myself, being a young mom, raising a little human in this kind of world just fills you with a sense of dread. A dread of "what if". What is going to happen next and sadder yet - where? Because as time has proven again and again it will. If 20 first graders can die via mass shooting and nothing is done about it, you can guarantee it will happen again. As it has already proven.

I'm not stepping on my invisible soapbox to preach gun control. Mental health help. I don't know the answers and I fear that even with great steps for each of those fields (which both desperately need reform) the crazies will find a way to do what their sick mind is telling them too. So I think about one of my very favorite quotes said by Mother Teresa:

If you want to bring happiness to the whole world, go home and love your family.

When I look at my little girl who's biggest world worries are the fact that I won't let her wear her daytime clothes to bed (seriously a legit battle) and when I look down and see my stomach growing with new life. I can't help but worry and yet feel an immense amount of hope. I worry about the things they will see in their lifetime. The tragedies yet to unfold, the war's we may become active participants in. I worry about a division of people right here in our country. People disliking one another without knowing one another. Religion separating and fear and hate continuing to pulse.

So what can I do? I will go home and love my family. I can't be their shield from all of life's very ugly realities. But I can do my best to show them all its beauty. The beauty that is always, always there even in very ugly situations. I can show them how to look for it, how to help others look for it and to remind them that even in times of great despair. It's there, sometimes not as easy to find, but it's still there.

I can tell them about the people who help. The people who advocate for change. The people who simply decide to love harder and more often. To say it out loud. People who proudly don uniforms to help those in need. Because in times of tragedy they too are always there.

It seems almost too great a task to bear raising the next generation. But at the same time it's too great a task to bear to do so poorly or inadequately. Without love, understanding, kindness and compassion. Our greatest hope is the future we raise. So go home and love your family and let's hope that doing that just a little harder will create a ripple that touches everyone. We owe them that much.

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Arriving April 2018


If you follow along on Instagram it's no secret that we are expecting a little bundle come April! Posts on here have been few and far between and that's because I have been battling some first trimester woes. However I am back to feeling great and looking forward to enjoying this pregnancy. Especially since we are about 99% sure it will be our last.

I won't do bump dates like I did with P - mainly cause 1. time 2. no one reads them. But hope to document this pregnancy differently mainly through photographs and memories. I am already showing (13 weeks and baby #2 don't mess around!) but fully embracing it and so excited to be pregnant during the holidays!

Thank you so much for all your texts, instagram comments, DM's and such! It's always so fun to share once the time is right! I am looking forward in seeing how my two pregnancies vary and are similar all while all trying to mentally block out labor and the beginning weeks of breastfeeding. Woof.

I have no doubt this time around will fly. It's my busy season with photography and the holidays around the corner. Before you know it I'll be singing Auld Lang Syne and cheering to 2018. I can't wait!





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Museum of Ice Cream SF

P and I had a mommy and mini day yesterday to visit the San Francisco Museum of Ice Cream. Which coming off the heels of The Color Factory had some pretty big shoes to fill! We had a lot of fun but definitely had a sugar meltdown towards the end. All that ice cream before lunch makes for a cranky toddler!



















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Toddler Sleep Problems

I wish I could say now that P is 3 years old. Our sleep issue stemming from babyhood are far behind us. The sad fact is that that couldn't be farther from the truth. David and I are brimming on the edge of insanity while we try and battle our allergic to sleep toddler. I was really optimistic that the start of a full day of preschool (five days a week 8-5pm) would wipe her out come end of day. But with the reintroduction of naps (we eliminated them at home due to this problem) she is back to her old bag of tricks.

But before I jump into the here and now with her sleep issues. I have to go back a couple of months. In May the "paci fairy" came to our house to take all of P's paci's to "deliver to new babies". I was super worried about this transition but turns out she was able to handle it quite well. She was excited about the fairy coming and making her a big girl. About a week went by without too much fanfare in the sleep department and then all ish hit the fan.

P began to have aggressive (and I mean aggressive) night terrors. She no longer knew how to self soothe herself. They would happen every single night and last anywhere from 10 - 45 minutes. Always around two hours after she fell asleep. If you have never experienced a night terror, let me break it down. Night terrors take place when a child cannot for some reason transition into REM sleep. P would cry, flail, scream for help, mommy, daddy and just sob. Inconsolably. When and if her eyes opened they would be glazed over and she clearly was not "with us". It's hard to describe but if you have experienced it you know what I am talking about. As soon as she snaps out of the terror she is back to her giggling, smiling self. Some nights I tell you it's almost like an exorcism.

So we have read a lot and researched a lot and it boiled down to a couple key factors. With the main one being that she is over tired. A lot of other things can contribute (being too hot, too much screen time before bed etc.) but we recognize that P's were likely happening due to the fact that she wasn't getting enough sleep. She wasn't napping and then when she went to bed - she wasn't sleeping well.

This went on for over three very long months and it was distressing. I was praying that once preschool started we would have some hope in sight. And while the terrors have lessened quite a bit (about 1x a week) we are now dealing with a toddler who simply does not want to sleep. When she finally falls asleep she is waking up anywhere from 3-5 times a night. This working mama is EXHAUSTED.

So this incredibly long post is basically a cry for help if any other parents are experiencing this. I also know there is a habit I need to break and while I have tried, I am also miserably failing. Because I am so damn tired that it's easier to just give in than fight her. She gets a sippy cup of milk before bed and I know that this is hurting us as she wakes up and cries for it. I've tried to swap it out with water but it's not cutting it (and truth is we are potty training so really she shouldn't be drinking anything!)

P's schedule is as follows:

7-7:30am: wake up get ready for preschool
8-8:30am: arrives at preschool
1-3pm: nap time at preschool (she doesn't always nap this full period)
6:30-7pm: dinner
7:30pm: bath
8-8:30pm: books and bed

She usually doesn't fall asleep until 9:30-10pm. Our pediatrician even suggested I give her children's benadryl for two weeks to try an disrupt her sleep cycles. So I gave it to her last night for the first time and she still slept like crap. We've tried lavender Epsom salt in the tub, essential oils, waking her up before a terror starts (never a good idea with her as it has always triggered a terror), putting her to sleep early, putting her to sleep later. For the love of the SANDMAN go to sleep child!!!

If you have made it to the end of this congrats. If you have advice for me, even better, I'm all ears just don't mind if I close my eyes.
play gown // Plain Jane
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First Day of Preschool

Somehow, the day that once upon a time felt so far away seems to have arrived here at rapid pace. How my little girl has gone from a squishy, snoring newborn to a robust three year old still has me scratching my head. I mean I'm still 31 aren't I? Don't answer that. While my updating in this space has been rather slow it is due time that I give a life update on the littlest love of my life.

P is proving to be a true Leo at every turn. She can commandeer a stage with no qualms and sing the first couple lines of Moana's "How Far I'll Go" rather robustly - that is until she notices she has your undivided attention in which she reverts herself to being shy. Something I assure you she is not. She has definitely learned the art of manipulation and oh boy! Is she good at it. For example when she gets in trouble she looks at us with those puppy brown eyes and says "You don't like me anymore?" Oye. You're killing me kid.

I would say her favorite activity is playing dress up and she has yet to meet a princess she doesn't love. Unless of course it's an actual princess than forget it - she goes running. She likes to test us - all the time and is hardly phased by the word no. However I did just learn that I can turn her to ice (like Elsa) and she will freeze. See? Mama's got magic too.

Today starts her first day of being watched by someone who is not family. We've been incredibly fortunate to have had the last three years just like that. Especially grateful to my parents who have been invaluable to us. She loves them something fierce and as a child who grew up far away from her own grandparents - but still loved them something fierce - I can only imagine just how special they are to her.

So to my baby girl on her very first day of school. I wish you this.

That your spirit continues to paint itself everywhere you go. That you are able to be forever true to who you are and how you feel. I hope you're kind and helpful to your classmates and teachers. I wish for you to make new friends and learn new experiences everyday. We love you so so much and watching you grow is and always will be one of the greatest honors of our life.

Now excuse me while I go cry...again.


 shirt - Crew & Lu (no longer available)
Letterboard - Letterfolk 

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The Color Factory

Last week my little squad got to go to The Color Factory in San Francisco and it was so much fun. It's a temporary pop up collaboration in a 12,000 sq. ft warehouse, you can read all about here. I was pretty happy I was able to score tickets as they sold out rather fast. In total we spent a little over an hour inside and I even saw the big kid enjoying himself - who knew ;)












rainbow dress - Pleiades Handmade
pink bow - Wunderkin
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