Summer = paddle time

paddle_13Friends, how are these last drifting days of summer treating you? Have you walked barefoot in grass so much that it seems the whites of your feet are stained greet? Have you binged on more Netflix — or homemade ice cream — than you can handle? Have you sat outside long after the sun has faded, talking with your people whose beautiful faces are lit by those strung lights you almost didn’t hang? I hope so. I really hope so.

Summer, for me, has meant letting my toes soak in rivers and lakes and hot tubs so long that they get soft and wrinkly. It means floating out to where the people aren’t and picking sweet blackberries while balancing on stand-up paddle boards. It’s been lily pads and conversations with friends and pretending I’m Huck Finn.

paddle_003paddle_4paddle_2paddle_02paddle_03paddle_11paddle_001paddle_3paddle_23paddle_6paddle_14paddle_20paddle_21paddle_15paddle_24paddle_31paddle-1paddle_paddle01Thank you, Andrea, for being my paddle sista. I love knowing that if I call you, you’ll come to the lake and hop on the back of my board just for the sake of paddling out to see a pretty sunset.

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Life Lately

lately_01My dad’s garden sprouted pumpkins he’s never planted, even though he’s had a garden in this same spot for over a decade.lately-02One of my best friends saw two of her beautiful daughters get married this year. I’m so glad I’ve been able to be a part of it.lately_03Working girls out for lunch. This was Kelli’s first day back from maternity leave. lately_04Because, coffee.food_1734Movie night with some of my favorite youngsters:lately_05
I have a Sacramento thrifting route. This is just one of the stops:lately_06Former coworkers got married last month, and it was a great excuse to get the newsroom family together again.lately_07Bananas were turning brown, so I made banana bread. Of course.lately_08Pups and plant love:lately_09lately_11My friend was out of town for a few days, so her kiddos and I made her a banner – “Welcome Home Sunflower” – and got her sunflowers. lately_12

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Hello, again

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Hello, friends,

Oh, how I’ve missed this space. I never meant for 10 months — wow, really? — to pass before coming back here to write and reflect and share. I have spent eight years here, sharing my smallest and most mundane moments, most of which become those fragments of life that stay in my mind the strongest. I love to look back on the months and years and remember the details. The way I felt in that cafe sharing a scone with an old friend. The strong smell of spices that fill my mom’s kitchen when we make tamales, and the family arguments that never fail to ensue. Seeing snapshots of special dishes that helped to turn an impromptu hangout into meaningful, soulful gatherings with friends and loved ones.

And so, here I am.

I am back.

At least I am going to try to be.

I often go through phases where it’s hard to get what I want to say shoot through my fingers and onto the keyboard, but never for 10 months. I may have felt a little stuck. I may still feel a little stuck, but that doesn’t mean I can’t just come here with the little bit I can manage to get out once in a while.

A lot has happened since March. Day trips. New recipes. Goal lists. Friendships. Summer. Oh — you know how I love summer. And oh yeah: I bought a home. All by myself. Yep, there was that. Just that one little distraction.

I may not have been here talking about these things, but I was still snapping them. Mostly. Which means I’ll share a whole lot on these things very soon.

And I’m excited. Because so many strangers have written to me, asking me to come back here. And because this is a place that I have come to realize helps me sort and make sense of a lot of life.

So, thank you for reading.

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A calm day in the city

etsy-2Maggie and I recently went to San Francisco from a crafting expo, and it was the most relaxing day. We shopped til we couldn’t anymore. We walked to Coit Tower. Went to the top. Then hit City Lights bookstore and grabbed some din-din. It was the best. etsy-4etsy-5aetsy-6etsy-7etsy-9aetsy-10etsy-11etsy-12etsy-13etsy-14etsy-15etsy-15aetsy-16etsy-17etsy-20etsy-21etsy-23etsy-24etsy-25

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Ice cream cones & library books

1Earlier this week, I shared Kelli and Ryan’s maternity photos with you. After they made breakfast at home while I snapped around, we went out and about the library and Foster’s Freeze for a treat. Here’s more of the happy couple and their baby bump.23456789101112

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At home with momma and papa {to be}

kp_1I first photographed their engagement, then their wedding, and now it’s exciting to share these photos of such a sacred space  –  of their home, their bond and their baby bump. Kelli and Ryan will welcome their daughter  –  their first child  –  into the world in the next few months. We spent a part of the weekend weekend together to document the routine of quiet mornings while their household is still just two + pooch. We celebrated the morning light as they pondered the future and lingered over a weekend breakfast. Here are my friends, momma and poppa, to be. kp_2kp_2akp_3kp_4kp_5kp_6kp_7kp_8kp_14akp_9kp_12kp_11kp_13kp_14kp_15kp_16kp_17kp_19kp_20kp_21kp_22kp_23kp_24kp_25kp_26kp_27kp_28kp_29kp_30kp_31kp_32kp_33kp_34kp_35

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Girls’ staycation

girls1I always say, when life gets busy, bunker down with the girls for a weekend and let your brain get away. Okay, I’ve never said that, but it’s definitely a new necessity. Maggie, Andrea and I recently kept it local for a little girls decompression weekend. We made a simple dinner (aka take-n-bake pizza and salad). We chatted with wine on the couch, and I did not feel guilty about falling asleep early in my corner – cus, hello, one of the main points was to rest. We soaked in the hot tub with mimosas and walked to downtown for Thai food. We colored and did crafty things and Andrea even wove a basket! It was the best.girls2girls3girls4girls5girls5agirls6girls7girls7agirls7bgirls9girls10girls11girls12

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