we headed up to santa barbara this morning. but first we grabbed breakfast at bagel shack. my favorite is the old mans on swiss. it’s become the kids favorite too. then started on our drive. we are learning a lot about each other this trip. like jacks bladder is the size of a peanut. he likes russian nursery rhymes even more than kinder egg videos. the ones he watches are so weird and use marvel characters in their videos, making them almost frightening. like a very robotic captain american in wheels on the bus. jack is relentless he will say the same thing over and over and over. if he doesn’t like my response he just keeps going. elle doesn’t stop talking. not even when i ask her to stop so jack can fall asleep. she insists on finishing her story. like a compulsion. its comical. she’s also always happy + singing. ava can read a book at warp speed. i don’t think there are enough quality books in this world. she’s read every single one at least 12 times. henri is content sitting in the back alone. i think he likes hanging back from the chaos. all that aside i’ve been told several times i have great kids, making all this insanity a little easier. i laugh cause we are only 3 days into this journey but we’ve done the bulk of our driving 2 of those days. anyone whose been cooped up in a car full of kids knows what i’m talking about.


we got to santa barbara in time for a late lunch hoping to beat the crowd only to find out our favorite mexican food joint, and was julia child’s too, la super rica taqueria is closed on tuesday + wednesday. the owner was there cleaning and he recommended another taco shop. it wasn’t nearly as good. so disappointing. so we headed over to the beach to let the kids play and burn off some energy. a group of guys were playing frisbee and doing all sorts of tricks, keeping ivan and i entertained.

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we kept on our drive stopping at el capitan and pismo beach which was covered in fog. reminding me of oregon. we decided to find a hotel near san luis obispo to crash for the night. we are thinking big sur tomorrow then sf. we still aren’t sure where we want to be for the 4th. san fran with their amazing fireworks show or a smaller town? maybe even bend oregon?

p.s. totally unrelated to this post but ivan made fun of me for buying these shoes aaaand i’ve gotten more compliments on them than any other shoe i’ve ever worn. so booyah ivan! they’re so comfy. get yourself a pair.




jack woke up bright and early, probably due to his late nap and early bed time. i was dead tired so ivan took him down for breakfast. from what i hear he did a lot of yelling and spilled his o.j. all over the table. jack’s day didn’t get much better after that. he’s having the hardest time with this move. luckily we can all make light of it and try to cheer him up. there was a lot of “no jack” and “come here jack” today. we went to heisler park, our favorite beach in the o.c. we like to think of it as our secret beach. it’s never crowded. theres great parking + an easy walk to the water. plus bathrooms! we met an older couple at the beach, the husbands name was jack and the wife jokingly said i say “no jack” a lot too. i half laughed half buried my head in the sand. you know that embarrassed feeling when you realize everyone is watching you chase around your wild 2 year old. he’s a crazy one. he loves hard +plays hard + sometime is just plain hard. back when he was in the hospital i begged for him to be healthy. to be able to change his diapers + give him a bath. he was on life support so we weren’t able to touch him, if we so much as moved a tube it was life or death. i prayed for him to be here. i said i’d take screaming all night. id take the hardest baby in the whole world. so these tough times are still sweet. we laugh them off. we look at each other like, it could be worse. i’ll take the terrible two’s over what could have been.

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we had lunch at our favorite corner in costa mesa. it has a pizza place + chinese food + taco shop all in the same area, with outdoor seating right out front. we all order from a different place and sit outside in the warm sun. the kids love it and so do we. we hopped back in the car and elle + jack fell asleep. we headed over to south coast plaza to do some shopping. ivan surprised me with a new purse and we took the kids down to the carousel. which they loved! for dinner we had din tai fung. they finally opened their o.c. location. if you haven’t been, GO! ivan took the kids back to the hotel and my sister met up with me so we could do some more shopping. we were supposed to meet up today with the kids but her little girl was sick so we decided it was best we didn’t.


initially we were going to stay for a few days so we could hang out with my sister and her family. now we are trying to decide what to do. stay here another day? spend a day at disneyland? head up the coast to a new beach town? i’ll let you know where we end up.



we headed out on our adventure today. we hung out on the porch at my parents house this morning. talking + laughing. the kids ran around the yard + road their bikes. we ate lunch and packed up. the suburban is packed to the brim. i actually had to repack is at my parents and toss a few things. california is typically a 5 1/2 hour drive for us but since we were in the mountains staying with my parents it added on another 1 1/2. there was a terrible accident on the one road coming into town, they blocked the whole road off and made us detour. so that added even more time.


we left around noon. my mom made us lunch. we filled our bellies and headed out. jack was pretty good initially. then nap time hit. i always nap him at the same time everyday. in his bed with his blanket tucked underneath him. he’s a creature of habit so sleeping in the car is not something he is happy doing. we stopped after about 4 hours of driving for a snack and to stretch out. we thought surely he’d go to sleep but nope. he didn’t fall asleep until around 5. i knew he would never go to bed at a decent hour but i’ll take any peace + quiet in the car i can take. the other kids did great. they always do.

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we made it into town around 8. yep 8 hours in the car!!! we rolled down the windows and let the cool air blow in our faces. our first stop was Ajisen Ramen. one of our favorite places and certainly our favorite ramen spot. we’ve tried other places in seattle + canada but nothing compares. we love the spicy pork ramen. they kids like the regular pork ramen. i like that they are adventurous with food. especially jack lately. we walked over to 85c for our dessert but they were out of our favorite pastry. i wish i knew what it was called. i’ll check next time we go. its a soft circle bread looking pastry filled with cream. its so so good!

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we are in southern california for the next few days. we aren’t sure how long. the first thing out of avas mouth was “lets live here!” i said well we could. because really we have no plans. we are just winging it day by day. i know this is the only time in our life we will be able to just drive until we love a place enough to stay. we are also trying to decide where to spend the 4th of july. i hear san fran has a pretty fantastic fireworks show. portland and seattle have great shows too.



wow these last few weeks have been tough. exhausting to say the least. ivan has been so busy finishing up work projects. he would leave before the kids woke and get home after they were in bed. it was really hard on all of us. on top of that i was left to pack the house. my fuse has been short. making my anxiety + stress levels sky rocketing! we finally got packed up and the house is sold. we left all the furniture + rugs + art + towels + beds + sheets. pretty much everything we own. we took our personal belonging and the items in the kitchen. you would think that would make moving a breeze but nope. i still did all the packing you normally do, just didn’t move the big stuff. my life is in a 14 foot trailer in storage right now.


we are making our rounds, saying goodbye to family. my sisters little boy was sick friday so we had to skip saying goodbye to them. luckily i saw her earlier in the week. we spent the night at ivans parents friday night. lots of swimming + laughing. we ate our favorite mexican food for dinner. seattle just doesn’t do mexican food like az does. we got to say good bye to a few of our greatest friends and then headed up to pine to stay the night with my parents. its all very bitter sweet. its so hard saying goodbye. az has always been home and always will be. at the same time we are ready for a new adventure and even more ready to see if our baby can grow out of his asthma. its hotter than heck in phoenix right now making it all the easier to go. the weather in pine is pretty great. i’m sitting in bed listen to an amazing thunder storm.


next stop is my sister’s in orange county. we can’t wait to see them. spend a few days on the beach with cousins. eat some of our favorite foods and RELAX. heaven knows we are beat! i’m so lucky to have such an awesome husband who works so hard for our family. who is up for an adventure and helps me stay positive when i ask him if we are totally nuts.



we purged a lot of toys. i don’t even know where these all were! i swear toys were multiplying.


this pretty much sums up my life. all those boxes. everything i own, right there!


i had a hard time driving away. i was so rushed trying to get everything moved  + cleaned. i didn’t have time to be sad. i was even rushing to an appointment as i drove off with a trailer hooked up to my car. i hopped out and got one last picture. i love that farm. i love the cement we put our hand prints in. i love the tree ivan carved our initials in. in my heart that will always be my farm. i hope the new owners love it as much as we did.



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