Dear Damian,

Yesterday you turned THREE years old! I still call you my “baby” but you always correct me and say, “I’m not a baby, I’m a BIG BOY!” And that you are. You love to talk and talk and talk. Our morning commute is never quiet. You’re fully potty trained and always on the move. You love to be outside, especially when you’re fishing. Fishing is probably your favorite thing to do, and riding your bicycle is probably second.

Every morning shortly after the sun rises you come into my room and say, “Mommy, it’s morning time” in the most adorable three-year-old voice. It’s usually followed up by, “I’m hungry,” which is a phrase I hear a lot from you. Ever since you were born you’ve loved to eat, something completely opposite of your big sister. Your favorite meal is fish and your favorite snack is strawberries. I can only imagine how much you’re going to cost me when you’re a teenager. 

You’re such a wonderful little brother to Evita. You have your share of arguments, but your love for her is plain to see. You share with her and care for her and you always want her by your side. You’re also the most loving son. You love to cuddle and give me kisses. I’m so grateful to have you as my SONshine!


Somewhere in Mexico…

Last September Ryan and I took a little surf trip to Guerrero, Mexico. Ryan’s family has a home there and he goes often, but it was my first time in the state since I was a kid. I was instantly reminded of why I had always dreamed of moving down to Mexico and opening a little surf hotel. The weather is gorgeous, the beaches are empty for miles, the food is superb, and the people are just so welcoming. It turns out that Ryan has always shared this dream of mine, so don’t be surprised if we just do it someday! He’s already started offering guided surf tours down there with his company, Southern Surf Schools. For now I feel I have too many responsibilities in the United States to make another international move, but one day I’ll figure it out. Until then the beaches will be calling…


Lately I feel I’m in constant motion, moving from one project to the next, flowing like a stream across a beautiful landscape. Some days seem overwhelming- but they always manage to pour out like a waterfall into a gentle pool, allowing for a few moments of tranquility before carrying on towards the sea. Most of the time I don’t mind the feeling of busyness. It’s always worth it when I can reap what I’ve sown, literally and metaphorically. Last weekend I tasted the perfectly sweet beets I planted months ago, a reminder of the power of patience and putting love into all that I do. It’s in these moments I recognize that busyness isn’t always work- it’s nurturing, it’s elevating, it’s creating. I’m grateful for these opportunities, and the space in between to reflect…


Evita Pilar,

Today you are FIVE years old! I’m continually in awe of the beautiful little lady you are becoming. You’re sweet and empathetic, wise and overstanding. If I knew any better I’d say you’ve been around this world for 5 thousand years, not just five. In just a few years of this lifetime you’ve already figured out that love is always the answer. It used to catch me off-guard when you’d be the one to remind me, but now I’m used to your little princess voice interrupting adult conversations from the backseat with wise words. I’m so proud of the individual you are, and so incredibly grateful to have you as a daughter. 

In many ways, you haven’t changed much since you were a tiny baby. You still love the beach and the water. You’ve been in swimming lessons for the last five months or so, and you’re now confident in your abilities to swim underwater or from one point to another. You still love flowers, but now you do more than just pick them. You plant them, sing to them, care for them. You’re just as comfortable running around a garden as the seashore. You love collecting things you find- seashells, rocks, and other treasures. You have an eye for little things in the sand and dirt that I would never notice. I’m so impressed by the things you’ve been drawing and painting lately. You know how to choose colors and shape what’s on your mind. You’re so smart, too. You know the phonics and are starting to read books. You’re still as girly as ever. Your favorite color is purple and you love all of the princesses.

Happy birthday my little darling. Thank you for making me a mama five years ago today. Thank you for continuously teaching me about love and life. And thank you for being my baby.