Little Style, Poetry & Words

LITTLE STYLE :: I Toss My Butterfly Net Across Her Laughter, To Remember This Moment (brought to you by

Aveline for children's clothes on - A monthly outfit sent corresponding to your style profile -Children's fashion style blogger

Aveline for children's clothes on - A monthly outfit sent corresponding to your style profile -Children's fashion style blogger

Aveline for children's clothes on - A monthly outfit sent corresponding to your style profile -Children's fashion style blogger

Aveline for children's clothes on - A monthly outfit sent corresponding to your style profile -Children's fashion style blogger

Aveline for children's clothes on - A monthly outfit sent corresponding to your style profile -Children's fashion style blogger

Aveline for children's clothes on - A monthly outfit sent corresponding to your style profile -Children's fashion style blogger

I get a little grumpy when it feels like the world is spinning without me, and it seems that way every time the seasons change. Northern California had its first rain on Labor Day, and the red clay drank up the water thirstily, the dust sliding from the waxy Live Oak leaves and running in rivulets into the cracked earth. I know the scent that thirsty ground gives up, and I know the coolness that falls in those drops.

Soon in the Midwest, the mercury will dip and everyone will pull open the bottom dresser drawer, reaching to the back into the sea of only-just-abandoned knit socks. The apples have already started to fall, red and green and sweet-smelling, tumbling from the crooked branches into the leaves and grass. I know the way an orchard apple tastes, seated on the crumbled stone remains of a farm someone once loved and lost.

And I know the faces belonging to all the laughter that rings from the Sierra Nevada in the West across to the northern end of the Mississippi, and I know the threads of family that tie us all together.

And sometimes it seems that everyone, everywhere, just keeps on spinning, dipping from summer into fall and through the winter and back up into spring, while Florida trudges steadily through the humid fog, and I with it. I lose track of whether it’s March or whether it’s September. I lose track of the hemisphere. In the constant green, the constant jungle, the constant rain, the passage of time seems as fluid as the tropical rains that turn sidewalks to streams.

But there is always somewhere I see time. I see it daily, in her rapidly growing face, I see her changing quickly, changing out of my reach and control, changing like the waves that never stay the same shape or height — unless I seize the scene, grasp it breathlessly with the grip of lens, and press it into a stolen moment, flat on the page.

This is what I do with my Aveline Alenka, my little ocean of joy. I toss my butterfly net across her laughter, I blink and remember her golden face for a moment, tucking it away into photographs.

And these photographs sail from the headwaters of the Everglades up to the Land of 10,000 Lakes, and across to the Golden State, and they sail into the hearts of waiting family, who see and feel and hear the passage of time through these colors infused with life.

We see the passage of time together, and we are connected. We are connected like the rain that falls across the Sacramento Valley, like the snow that tumbles down the Minnesota pines, like the steam that rises up off the Everglades. We are connected, for we are family, and no side effect of meteorology or geography can ever change that.

Disclosure of Material Relationship: I received a sample box in exchange for my participation and promotion. All the photographs, opinions, and experiences shared here are in my own words and are my own honest evaluation. Please be assured, I only accept sponsorship opportunities for brands I personally use would recommend to close friends and family, and I will always disclose any such relationships. is a subscription service based on your style preferences, allowing you to receive a personalized 3-piece box of children’s clothing and accessories each month. Unlike other subscription box services, lets you know what that month’s shipment will be ahead of time, so you’ll always love what shows up on your doorstep. Find out more about the styles, outfits and options available — for both boys and girls! — at

Life in Photos

LIFE IN PHOTOS :: A favorite moment, one month ago in California

“…or at least let me
recapture the serenity of last month when we picked
berries and glided through afternoons in a canoe..

…I was in the garden then, surrounded by the hum of bees
and the Latin names of flowers, watching the early light
flash off the slanted windows of the greenhouse
and silver the limbs on the rows of dark hemlocks.

As usual, I was thinking about the moments of the past,
letting my memory rush over them like water
rushing over the stones on the bottom of a stream.
I was even thinking a little about the future, that place
where people are doing a dance we cannot imagine,
a dance whose name we can only guess.” -Billy Collins

Summer Vacation Tour, Travel/Moving

TRAVEL :: NorCal with Me: The Launch of the Summer Vacation Tour, a Virtual Travel Series

I am so excited to launch the Summer Vacation Tour, a brand-new virtual travel series! I have enlisted the help of some amazing friends and bloggers, and over next couple of weeks, they will take you to places like Costa Rica, London, Paris and more. This series wouldn’t be possible without their photos and perspective, so a huge thank you to each of you who contributed!

To kick off the series today, I want to share NorCal with you. It was really hard to narrow down what I wanted to say, since my love for this place is a whole lot bigger than I can convey in just a handful of photos. But, I’ll try… :)


My top five things to love about the Sacramento Valley

  1. The people, of course! This goes without saying, since California holds a huge treasure trove of my dear friends and my husband’s family, whom I love like my own.
  2. The food! It’s less expensive, fresher, and there’s more variety than anywhere else I’ve lived. California produces more than half of the United States’ fruit, vegetables, and nuts. When you break it down to specific foods, the percentages are even higher — nearly 100% of the nation’s pomegranates, kiwis, olives, figs and artichokes come from California. The state also provides 90% of the nations’s avocados, 85% of the nation’s garlic, 75% of the nation’s lettuce…and the list goes on. This is all available to locals at farmers’ markets, and is reflected in the state’s restaurants, too, which are widely diverse in terms of different cuisines and different countries represented. (No, actually, not everyone is a vegetarian. Californians cook up a mean tri-tip steak, a cut of beef the rest of the US has rarely even heard of. My mouth is watering just thinking about it, and I don’t even eat beef!) Oh, and did I mention food is much less expensive there?
  3. I love Californian style. I love that Californians, by and large, are a stylish lot. Clothing and looks pop up in California long before they appear in the rest of the United States. In fact, our family jokes* that if one moves away from California to another state, one doesn’t have to buy any clothes for five years! (*very much based in fact)
  4. The weather in the area surrounding the Sacramento Valley is perfect. Spring is a gorgeous display of every kind of bloom imaginable, and definitely the greenest time of the year. The hot dry days of summer are countered by the refreshing Delta Breeze which blows in each evening and creates as much as a fifty degree difference between daytime and nighttime temperatures. Autumn’s crisp days and crunchy leaves swallow up the summer haze little by little, until it’s suddenly winter. Winters in the Sacramento Valley are cool, wet, and deliciously windy (although the strong winds which blow everyone’s fences down in December and January always seem to take people by surprise!) It regularly freezes in the Valley, and just 30-45 minutes away, into the foothills of the Sierra Nevada and beyond, winter is white. An hour outside of Sacramento, snow is measured in feet, not inches.
  5. Is it cheating to say that a favorite thing about this location is…the location? The Sacramento Valley is right in the middle between the Golden Gate Bridge and Lake Tahoe. Enough said, right?

Favorite Places in Northern California -  Rural Towns Rural landscapes — Yes, California is FULL of the most gorgeous rural areas you’ll ever see. This photo was taken on the street we lived on before we came to Florida. Looks are deceiving, because this view is only a mile from city life. I LOVE that California is full of contrasts like that.

Favorite Places in Northern California - Lake TahoeLake Tahoe area in the Sierra Nevada mountains — From where we lived in NorCal, one could go the ocean and the snow in the same day — there’s that profoundly wonderful California contrast for you again.

Favorite Places in Northern California -  Point Reyes Point Reyes — If we’re Facebook friends, you likely recognize this as it’s my cover photo. I took this picture on our second anniversary, right before we hiked up 2,948,795,843,987 stairs to the Point Reyes light house. I was pregnant. It was a loooooong climb. But the view is one of my favorite in the world!

Favorite Places in Northern California - Bodega BayBodega Bay — I could write for days about Bodega Bay, and I’m still not sure words could do it justice (and that’s saying a lot, because I am a lover of words).

Favorite Places in Northern California -  Oak Trees and Foggy Sunrise Foggy sunrise shining through the oak trees — another photo from our old home in NorCal. I miss those trees, and the cool morning air that we definitely don’t get here in Florida.

So there you have it! NorCal, my favorite place. I can’t wait to introduce you to the other locations in this series!

This post is a part of the Summer Vacation Tour, a virtual travel series hosted here on To ‘travel’ to other locations while I’m taking a brief break from blogging, click here. (Want to be featured in the future? Email me!)

Life in Photos

My seester is coming to see me!

See this? It’s my seester(in-law). As you can tell from this picture (taken in San Diego last year at cousin Julie’s wedding), we’re always perfectly behaved, and of course, we never goof around.

Especially in public.

Hannah and Gina

She’s coming tomorrow, all the way from California. I. CAN. NOT. WAIT. I mean, a year ago, she and I lived just a mile apart in the same pretty little California town. Today, she lives in my old house (what?!) and I’m 3,000 miles away. And last time she saw Aveline? The wee miss looked like this.

So yeah. I’ve missed her. This week is going to be all kinds of wonderful!