The Adventures of Togetherness

Scrolling through Facebook this morning while I nursed Evvie, a couple things showed up in my feed more than once: A new report on the likelihood of an earthquake hitting California and a study on the median income rates needed to live in certain cities in the United States. San Francisco towered above most, if not all of the cities in this country, a statistic that has been getting a lot of attention lately. The housing rates in our beloved state are astronomical and quite honesty unrealistic by most any stretch of the bandwidth of a normal human being working and raising children in America. The influx of money from companies like Google, Netflix and Facebook itself has created a somewhat petri dish out of our beloved Silicon Valley.

The struggle, as it turns out, is actually real. As parents we’re constantly aiming to provide not only a roof over our family’s heads and meals on our plates, but we are cognizant and intentional about expanding the horizons of our blossoming babies. Extra curricular activities include organized sports and swimming lessons, and we are always striving to incorporate growing experiences into our weekends in the form of skiing. museums and creative activities.

The nature of our location is really everything though. The weather is gorgeous and we truly have access to so much — literally most everything within a decent proximity — that it becomes more about planning ahead with a family of six plus a dog and a cat at home. We almost went to Lake Tahoe this weekend, but decided not to at the last minute due to the sheer nature of packing for a ski trip for our family being overly daunting given some health issues I’ve been experiencing lately. It’s incredible to have the option to go at all, so we’ll save it for another weekend and instead chose to take the kids to San Francisco to explore the city a bit instead.

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We arrived in the early afternoon and headed to Fisherman’s Wharf. It was packed with people; the weather has been truly incredible lately and I think we’re all trying to take advantage of it given the extreme weather that our East Coast friends are having. We talked a bit about Alcatraz before seeing a couple of street performers’ shows and then packing up to head to dinner. Part of this fun weekend away included a night in a hotel, which for all of us is very exiting and fun. Big bathtubs, big beds and the excitement of hunkering down with just each other to keep us company was the focus of this trip mainly.

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Togetherness: It’s an adventure in itself most days, but removing ourselves from the traditional context of our lives makes it even more fun and memorable .

The following day was jam-packed. We tooled around the city on cable cars in the morning, ran our hearts out and scootered a bit through Crissy Field under the span of the Golden Gate Bridge, and explored the grounds at the Palace of Fine Arts.

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It can be very easy for me to forget how lucky we are to be living in such an area that so many different things are easily accessible from our home base in Santa Cruz. An hour and a half away from the cultural offerings of the great city of San Francisco is quite accessible, I just have to remember to actually plan and go. We have worked so hard and we’ll continue to work hard to be able to continue to live in this area, but finding the things out there that are accessible and don’t cost much to experience is part of our infatuation with this area. The kids appreciate it, and we get to have an adventure in this beautiful state that we are fortunate to live in.

Join the Conversation


  • Jessica,
    I need to take a second to thank you for sharing your life with us. I look forward to your post and often find myself re-reading them as I try to take every word in. You are a beautiful writer and you are blessed with four absolutely gorgeous children. You are the definition of what a REAL mom is. Your children, your girls especially, are lucky to grow up under your loving, intelligent and hard working wings.
    Congratulations on all your accomplishments.
    Sarah (Boston, MA)

  • Have you ever thought about writing a book, perhaps a children’s book??

  • I look forward to your posts and seeing pictures of your children! Thanks so much for sharing your family and life with us! You inspire me as a mother to get out and do all that you can with your kids even though it’s hard a times! Both physically and mentally! I would love to meet you all one day!

  • Thanks for sharing this! I live in New York with my daughter and sometimes I have to remind myself that we have a world of adventures right outside of our door. I try to find little outings for us to go on and experience the city. And luckily, she goes to Girls Prep, a great school that gives her numerous opportunities to explore and discover the city in an educational way.

  • Thank you for so simply addressing many of California’s, and the bay area’s wonderful qualities. I recently returned to the bay area after living in Colorado and Oregon, and besides the high housing prices, living anywhere else can’t beat it here. I do struggle with describing why I love it here so much to family and friends, but you put it nicely. I usually say, it’s where I’m from and it’s got everything I want. I know housing prices are high, but with my job as a nurse, my income can literally be doubled out here. Yes it’s crowded, but I try to take it as a compliment that so many other people love it here as well. It’s just home for me and there is never a shortage of activities for our family! Also, you get what you pay for, and personally, it’s a better quality of life!

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