one fair, three very different summers

Thursday, August 17, 2017

Every year, the fair comes to town. We've only been here for a few summers, and it's amazing how different each summer has been. And specifically, how I remember this particular fair.

Three summers ago, I didn't even go to the fair. I had just found out I was pregnant, and each day felt like I was barely trying to keep my head above water. While my daily joys typically revolve around playing with my kids or seeing them get excited about something new or even a really delicious ice cream sandwich, during that time, I had a really, really, really, really, hard time finding much joy in anything. I felt so tired-- as if my own blood cells couldn't muster up the energy to do much more than just survive. The day of the fair three years ago was dark for me, and I really can't tell you much more than I went to bed around five in the afternoon, and didn't wake up until the kids had already been asleep for a couple of hours. I remember asking Chris how the kids liked the fair. But, even my questions felt half-hearted. I couldn't understand why I didn't even feel like being around my own kids. Having suffered with depression during my second pregnancy, I knew what was happening, but it sure didn't make it any easier.

Last summer, we went as a family of five. Chris and I were officially outnumbered. We brought baby Oscar with us, and we were still trying to find our footing with three kids. And I remember the big kids saying, "Mom! I'm so glad you came this time!" They couldn't wait to show me every ride from the year before.

Fast forward three summers later. A genuinely happy mama, with two genuinely happy kids, and one baby back home sleeping. 

And one genuinely happy dad who didn't have to ride the teacups :)

As we stopped at the top of the ferris wheel, Sof hung on to me so tightly. Every time it would go around, she would squeeze me around the same time because she knew what was coming next. She was anticipating the fear that she knew would come. As I sit here writing, I've realized that I know so well what that feels like. Sometimes, I wonder if we do have another baby, if that same darkness will come back. I don't know if I've ever really written or vocalized it before, but this is the truth: I am scared. I am scared of going to that really hard place. I know that I am one of the fortunate ones. One of the ones who experiences antepartum depression for a few months, and then it sort of seems to fade away by around the half-way mark of my pregnancy. But, as I've talked to other moms, I've learned that while each experience is unique, it is still very real. 

So, yeah. Just cracking a window open here to let you know that stuff scares me, too. And feeling so lucky to have such amazing people in my life who let me squeeze them tight when I'm going around that ride and are there with me when I need them most.

A year of Jones kids: August

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

You guys. I don't even know I've been posting these updates on the blog, but I've been taking pictures of the kids in front of this calendar since January.

And, like, you know when you start something, thinking it's a really fun idea...but then you get halfway through, and you're all "Wait, what was I thinking?" Yeah. THAT.

But, whatever. Every month, they stick with me. They know they'll be both bribed and threatened and bribed some more. You know what, though? I keep doing them because every month a small part of me is proud that they're all still there, and I haven't accidentally left one behind at the grocery store. (Speaking as someone who once got lost at the grocery store as a child, and was so certain I would never see my mother ever again, and would have to spend the rest of my days somewhere in between the cereal isle and the dog food, this is a major MAJOR win.) 

Some days I still think, "Wow. Three. And they're mine."

Just makes my heart want to burst and cry and hold them so tightly. Never gets old. 

Also, speaking of photographing kids, I was honored to be approached by one of my favorite companies, Artifact Uprising to help contribute to a piece they worked on called, "Photographing Littles." I, along with some other parent-photographers, shared some of our tips when capturing our own little ones. You can find the post HERE!

|| Little Cottonwood matching "Ridge" button-up shirts: HERE || Little Cottonwood "Rosie" dress in blue gingham: HERE ||

Sayulita: Where to Stay!

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Have you heard my whole thing about "seasons?" Like, I'm not talking about weather seasons, but, like, the metaphorical kind? There are seasons where I'm better at staying on top of the laundry, seasons where reading a good book seems to sit on the back burner, or seasons where I am really really good at carving out time for myself. Well, this season I've been in lately has revolved around keeping my kids semi-happy while they're out of school, so any writing and work has taken a bit of a hit. But, I'm ready to start a new season, and excited to find my writing groove again now that the kids are heading back to school.

Near the top of my list of things to write about and catch up on was our trip to Mexico earlier this summer! In an attempt to simplify things for myself I'm planning on breaking the trip down into smaller posts. So, we're kicking things off over here with Sayulita: Where to Stay!

Before choosing a place to stay, I really like to do a bit of research. I read reviews, searched to see if the places had their own Instagram accounts, and really tried to find out as much about the place as possible. I chose to book a stay with the Petit Hotel Hafa, and we are so glad we did. Whenever we have traveled together, Chris and I really like to look for a place where we can really immerse ourselves into the area. One time several years ago when traveling around England, I was able to (accidentally) find a place in Manchester that not only put us in a wonderful location, but also was a stone's throw from a landmark commemorating one of my husband's favorite historical figures. I wasn't able to achieve that this time (darn!), but I guess that means we just need to plan a trip back to Europe :) Although, I will say, Petit Hotel Hafa was pretty darn close to his favorite taco stand of all time, so that DOES count for something right??

Do you spy two little cute selfies??

We chose room #2, and I fell in love with the feel of the room right away. I loved the decor, and of course, I loved how bright and clean it felt. I will however, advise that you splurge a bit and pay extra for the AC-- it can definitely get a tad toasty in there. We had someone come in every day to clean and bring fresh towels. I also loved that in addition to the key we got to the room, we also got a key to the main gate of the hotel. They lock it up every night around 8pm, but you can let yourself in whenever you like. We felt super safe our whole time there.

Before our trip, I had these great plans to sleep in and not get out of bed till noon. Well, that didn't happen. I don't know that I would call myself a morning person, but once I wake up in the morning, I'm up. That's it. There's really no dozing back off to sleep.

I was pretty happy to lay in our room, however, reading there or up on the gorgeous rooftop deck that was just steps away from our room.

Seriously though, this place was just so pretty and quaint every took you turn!

The rooftop deck really was the cherry and whipped cream on top here. It was always quiet, and we usually had the whole deck to ourselves. We loved to come here to read in the mornings, or just spend time tougher after dinner. When it's dark, they light the place up with candles, and you can hear all the night owls in the streets. 

And if you're looking for a good spot for a picture, there is a darling path of hearts just outside our door!

So, there ya go! And these pictures don't even quite do it enough of justice. We loved staying at this super colorful and beautiful place, and I'd highly recommend it if you find you're planning your own stay in Sayulita :)

Till next time!

|| "Faye" Straw Boater Hat: HERE || Madewell tassel earrings (red no longer available) HERE || Madewell sunglasses (sold out) similar HERE || 

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