This Sweet Life: Traditions with Theo

I truly loved living in New York City. It was, of all the places that I’ve lived, the one that made me feel the most alive. No matter what kind of day I was having, how I was feeling or the troubles I was facing, walking out of my apartment and into the streets of Manhattan always made me feel better. The perspectives to consider when even walking past another human being in a completely different place than yourself is incredibly humbling. Facing the weather on any given day was always a little surprising for this California girl, be it blazing heat, pouring rain, sloppy slush or biting winds, but almost always I would be physically shocked out of complacency and eventually inspired with every fiber of my being.

Everyone hopefully has something that will inspire them in a similar way, for me it was the movement and diversity of Manhattan. I miss it, but I’ve tried to transfer that inspiration to my new home and new surroundings. That’s kind of the point of life, right? To adapt and find the good but remember and apply the lessons from challenges into new experiences? Anyway, my family and I are ridiculously happy back in California with our families and friends. It is better than any feeling I hoped for during our roughest moments in NYC.

The holidays in Manhattan were my favorite time of year. The first snow each winter felt the first one ever in eternity; I will always remember all five of our faces plastered against the windows, smearing condensation in perfect symmetry while watching flakes fall onto the window sills and busy streets. This year we’ve begun new traditions for the holidays, ones that I feel like I’ve waited on since our children were born.

I prepared Thanksgiving dinner in our new (spacious, to us!) kitchen and enjoyed it with our families, making every single dish from scratch and loving every minute of it. We took the kids up to a farm that my husband has been going to since he was a child to cut down our Christmas Tree. We picked the biggest one that would even sort of fit in our living room, simply because we could. The last four years, our tree lived under our bed until it’s annual December emergence.




Beau’s second birthday fell on the same day as our hometown parade. We literally celebrated for days, with all of our people with us.

jackets by appaman



It’s so fun to be able to include our newest family member in many of our new traditions, and I just feel so incredibly lucky to be the mama in this pack of sweet spirits.

Theo and Beau are developing the most amazing relationship. Their bond is getting stronger and more hilarious and amazing every day. Jack and Zoe are also having a blast with our newest addition, special and lovely in their own individual ways.

tee by appaman, pants by mini & maximus

The two babies of the family are still napping together, a routine that I don’t see halting any time soon (though I’ll surely weep when it does!).

hoodies: american apparel

tee by mini & maximus

tee by mini rodini, pants by goat-milk. both from Poppy’s Closet.

tee by appaman

mini rodini jumpsuit from Poppy’s Closet

Every day I am continuously astounded by the following that Theo and Beau are accumulating. I’m receiving the most thoughtful and heart felt messages, and the comments on the Instagram photos and Facebook posts are truly so lovely. Thank you all so much for sharing a bit of our heart with us.

We are continuously looking into ways to support the Santa Cruz SPCA, and I appreciate all of your ideas and suggestions! Believe me when I say this is definitely a priority for me and I am exploring our options.

This past year has been the most incredible journey, and I couldn’t possibly feel more blessed or grateful.


Join the Conversation


  • Your backdrop and stage will always change, certain players will come as other drift away, but your sweet family and bountiful light will always be a part of your stories. I’m so glad for you and your tender, giving heart in this world. Merry merry days to you always. Xo

  • I visited NYC this year on a girls trip with my sisters and mom and it was magical. There really is something to be said about a city that never sleeps! Yay for new traditions – chopping down a tree was always a favorite of mine growing up. My family didn’t do it but my best friend always let me join along. I still look back at those days so fondly!

  • Quei due con il cappuccio, mi fanno “impazzire” !

  • Amazing. Beautiful post and beautiful family!

  • Thank you for sharing your family! It’s all beautiful!

  • I mean, that sweet puppy is napping in a hoodie! Gah! I show my hubs every picture. It’s just a highlight in our days -thank you sooooooo much!
    Change subject. 🙂 Surely, you know about the Humans of New York blog, but just in case you don’t (or someone who reads your comments doesn’t) I find it a sweet fix for when I’m longing for NYC. I laugh. I cry. I identify. Then, I quickly daydream about the next time I’m there….One of the most alive places on earth. <3

  • I due col cappuccio mi make me crazy.

  • Beau reminds me so much of my Phoebe.

    I bet you are just loving having so much space to spread out in! We are so short on closet space here

    Happy Holidays to you and your crew.

    This is the day we spent in Golden Gate Park shooting our holiday pictures.

    xoxo from san francisco


  • love your blog as well as the pictures of beau and theo that sent me here.
    (and i love your tree!)
    you mentioned that you love seeing the two of them napping, “a routine that [you] don’t see halting any time soon”…. i am here to tell you that it likely will never halt.
    i created a monster when i let my (now 8 year old) new puppy sleep for the first few nights with my husband and i. there is no removing him. that spot is *his* spot. he prefers to be under the covers and on cold nights prefers the end of the bed between us (the warmest spot, i assure you).
    it is a beautiful bond the two of them share… beau will always have theo’s adoration and devotion .

  • Bringing tears to my eyes. So awesome and lovely… as I lay here next to my two year old son. Sometimes life is crazy and hirriblr like some of the two years I spent in Iraq. Pictures like your boy and pup bring happiness to my heart and soul. Thank you for sharing.

  • Love your website! I have not explored it in details yet, but for now my favorites are the napping pictures of Theo and Beau . Amazing shots! They are sooo cute together. I can’t wait when my grandson (4 months) could nap with their dogs named Maddie & Winston, both schnauzers.

  • This absolutely melts me and brings tears to my eyes. I’m a HUGE animal lover, and I’m expecting my first baby in April. I can’t wait to see how my sweet pit bull snuggles with our new baby girl. What kind of dog is yours?

  • omg i absolutely love the pics of theo and your little man napping, so precious it makes us want a puppy lol!!!

  • Came here via Facebook because of the pics. They are FABULOUS! Love the connection your son and puppy have. Thank you for sating and brightening up my day.

  • I absolutely love your blog and pictures… They made my day!

  • No matter how bad my day may be i always look at your pics of theo and Beau and i instinly cheer up they make my day better!! thank you for sharing

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