Well I can’t believe it’s been close to a month since we took this vacation. To be honest, you really need a vacation FROM your vacation when travelling with a kid. Sadly Saunder is not aware that most people choose to sleep in everyday on trips, so we enjoyed early mornings and Paw Patrol to save the day. In all honesty, I am a big time control freak and had to tell myself over and over that his nap schedule and bedtime DOES NOT MATTER. He will roll with it and he honestly did just that… literally took 10-20 minute power naps and was crazy energetic throughout the day, THEN he would have this 4th wind at around 8pm when we are hanging with family and be ready to rock for another few hours - it was aawweeesssooommeee!! I just wish I could be more relaxed like this back in everyday life.

All in all, I loved San Fran (according to Auntie Marie, locals call it THE CITY, and SanFran gets eye rolls). The “City” as we had to call it, had a upbeat atmosphere and I think we spent the first day walking along ALL the Piers which made me question my fitness ability multiple times (apparently chasing a toddler is not a workout?)

Highlights of the trip I would have to say firstly, seeing Sam’s family. All his cousins have boys and Saunder being around all the high energy was amazing, he loved chasing after them and I am pretty sure he said “mama” for the first time BECAUSE the boys were blabbering nonstop. Other highlights were Pier 39, the chocolate factory, Alcatraz tour, going to Santa Cruz with Auntie, and swimming in the pool. Oh.. and the wine! Auntie had an amazing collection and we had some fantastic meals along with it. Food and Wine. Yup, that helps.

Anywho, enough blabbering, here are the pictures I captured from the adventures we took. Truthfully I am so happy I took my camera + one lens (50mm), because I can cherish these photos forever and there is something so unique about capturing through a full frame versus my iphone.

Heading to Santa Cruz with Auntie, and we found THEEEE most beautiful little valley. I forced Sam to pull over and do a mini shoot because I found the lighting amazing.. so amazing, that I asked for some photos of JUST ME to keep .. he made me feel pretty.

Also Auntie Marie is the bomb, she showed us all the short cuts and the fav spots! Including a stop at RedWood National Park.

Back on the road to Santa Cruz..

And that’s the last of em! I tried to spend half my time not bringing along the camera, especially to family hangs so I could focus on being in the moment. Does any other photographer know the right balance for this? I find when I DON’T bring my camera, I see moments that I so badly which were documented, but then I remind myself that it is just as important to experience it through just my eyes. The never ending photography battle I guess haha.