Life in Photos



“Something I constantly notice is that unembarrassed joy has become rarer. Joy today is increasingly saddled with moral and ideological burdens, so to speak. When someone rejoices, he is afraid of offending against solidarity with the many people who suffer. I don’t have any right to rejoice, people think, in a world where there is so much misery, so much injustice.

I can understand that…But this attitude is nonetheless wrong. The loss of joy does not make the world better — and, conversely, refusing joy for the sake of suffering does not help those who suffer. The contrary is true. The world needs people who discover the good, who rejoice in it and thereby derive the impetus and courage to do good. Joy, then, does not break with solidarity. …This results, then, in the courage to rejoice.” -Joseph Aloisius Ratzinger

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


INSPIRATION :: Japanese Fashion Label FRAPBOIS (and a Music Video!)

Frapbois Japanese Fashion - The Creation Story Music Video with SHUGO TOKUMARU for Frapbois AW13-14 Collection

Maybe I’m a little behind the times, but I’d never heard of the Japanese fashion label FRAPBOIS. Have you? I saw one of their lookbook photos from a previous season and was intrigued. A little googling led me to their website, and this absolutely charming music video — so creative!

And all this wonderful autumnal pattern mixing? Count me in! (I’m purely dreaming…the air conditioner is running around the clock and I’m in a tank-top and shorts. Also, I get cold easily. Shhh, just let me think the grass is greener.)

Japanese fashion lable Frapbois - Autumn Winter 13 14

4 - Japanese fashion label Frapbois - Autumn Winter 13 14 3 - Japanese fashion label Frapbois - Autumn Winter 13 14 Japanese fashion label Frapbois - Autumn Winter 13 14

5 - Japanese fashion label Frapbois - Autumn Winter 13 14

See the entire FRAPBOIS AW13-14 collection here.

Little Style

LITTLE STYLE :: Neutrals and Pattern Mixing

Little Style - Toddler Jeans and Cardi - Neutrals- via Oaxacaborn dot com
I love a good, neutral outfit for my girl. With the right shoes — she’d wear sparkly Converse with these — she still looks feminine, but (thankfully!) doesn’t look like a Disney princess exploded in her closet.

I have a similar outfit in my own closet; I pair it with heels in the summer and tall black boots and a black scarf in the winter.

Little Style - Toddler Pattern Mixing- via the Oaxacaborn blog dot com copy
I’ve loved mixing patterns since long before it was a “thing”. Now that it’s in, I have an excuse! I love how the solid green skirt creates a visual break between the two patterns. (Well, actually, the real reason I include the skirt here is because I’m adamant about teaching Aveline leggings are not pants. She might be a member of the under-two set, but the rule still applies. Seriously!)

Monday's Pretty Things

MONDAY’S PRETTY THINGS :: Earthy Autumn Blues

There’s a hint of fall in the air. When I say “hint”, I really mean that — a nearly imperceptible nudge that’s just barely recognizable as autumn. This is Florida, after all. There’s no crisp air, no falling leaves, nothing to quiet the around-the-clock hum of the air conditioner. But it’s there on the calendar — September — and today, I’m picturing September in minty blues and earthy browns.

Ferm Living Harlequin Mug via Decorate Shop DKHarlequin Mug from Ferm Living, via

Autumn Field and Mountains, via FjellbyAutumn Field and Mountains, vie Fjellby

Striped Cardigan Pattern on Ravelry by PinneguriStriped Cardigan Pattern, via Pinneguri on Ravelry

Étretat, Haute-Normandie, France via Kostyasticky on FlickrÉtretat, Haute-Normandie, France via Kostyasticky on Flickr

P.S. In the mood for even more pretty things? Here are some previous installments:

Life in Photos, Little Style, Poetry & Words


It’s a brand-new week; a new dawn, with new mercies. I need that reminder this morning. I need to remember that right here, in Florida, is exactly where we are supposed to be.

I need to remember — “You saw how the Lord your God carried you, just as a man carries his son, in all the way which you have walked until you came to this place.” (Deut 1:31)

And I need to remember that He never stops leading us. This is not the end of the story (it never is!) He leads us to the green pastures, by the still waters, through shadowy valleys…

Florida feels surreal, sometimes. It feels like another dimension, like there’s no point of reference for me to really grasp the passage of time. I think I feel this especially acutely this time of year, when I the seasons begin to turn every place except here.

I know Fall is descending gently upon the California coast, like it does every September. I know the nights are slowly getting cooler, and I know a leaf or two is now tinged crimson around the edges. I know what it’s like to watch the first raindrops dance down across the dusty Sacramento valley.

I know this, but here, the southern sky has not changed in months. September’s sky sweeps across the canvas above the same now as it did in April, and every day in between the air has been swollen with moisture, spilled over from rain-soaked clouds. Always it’s hot, always it’s humid, and always the temperature of dusk and dawn are indistinguishable from day.

Last night, as a wave of homesickness washed over me and I just wanted to be home, I asked God for peace. God reminded me of Abraham’s sojourning life. God reminded me that no matter what — Egypt, the Red Sea, the wilderness, the promised land, no matter what — He’s always there, in that pillar of fire.

And so here, now, in this new (humid, hot) morning, I know. He’s here. And I’m exactly where I’m supposed to be.

Aveline wearing Reggie White jersey

Aveline wearing Packer clothes - Tie Dyed Onesie

Photos: Aveline learning about a very important Fall tradition. She wore the hat & jersey just so I could snap a photo of her wearing it…then she started to sweat, so I took it off ;-)

Inspiration, Monday's Pretty Things

Monday’s Pretty Things :: On a Tuesday

Bosnian Coffee in Sarajevo, via RamblinCat on DeviantArt
Bosnian Coffee in Sarajevo, via RamblinCat on DeviantArt

It’s only right that we top off the end of the the long three-day weekend with COFFFEEEEEE. That delicious caramel-colored coffee goes perfectly with the rustic-looking ceramics, don’t you think? I liked the photo even more when I read that it was taken in Sarajevo!

Fog Linen striped towel via Old Faithful on {frolic!}
Fog Linen via Old Faithful on {frolic!}

I love the classic look of this striped towel. Although this one uses Japanese fabric, it’s modeled after the Turkish linen towels which were first hand-loomed near the Aegean and Black Seas centuries ago.

Autumn 2011 Women House and Home - Farrin Stripe Chemise Tunic
Farrin Stripe Chemise via Toast UK

This striped tunic featured in Toast UK’s newest Autumn 2011 Women’s catalogue was definitely inspired by Turkish linens!

Pink Toile - Etienne - Amilie - Harlequin Wallpaper
Pink toile wallpaper via

I don’t usually go too crazy for pink, but this pink twist on toile really caught my eye. Or maybe it’s just the super-clean, clutter-free space that’s appealing to me ;-)

Red Ombre Ruffle Pillow made from Upcycled Sweaters via thatfunkybotique on etsy
Red Ombre Ruffle Pillow via That Funky Boutique on Etsy

I’d just love to cuddle up here amongst all those knit pillows with that cup of Sarajevan coffee.

white cable knit throw via mi casa
Cable Knit Throw via Mi Casa Revista as seen on Inspirations Deco

I’m a huge fan of cable knit, especially when it’s done in off-white and earthy tones. Check out the rest of the photos from this pretty Spanish house — there are more cable knit throws and pillows throughout the home.

Cable Knit via Closet Visit
Cable Knit via Closet Visit

Alright, one last dose of cable knit for good measure. If Autumn has arrived where you live, you can use this to keep warm. Me, I’ll just keep dreaming while the AC is humming away…

You might also like to read Monday’s Pretty Things from previous weeks