Puerto Rico 2016 Highlights

After our wonderful vacation in Mexico with my parents, we headed to Puerto Rico with the Natori Seniors…YUP #hardlife and YUP #travelwithparents. We had a luxurious, lavish, relaxing, and fun 5 days (just like last year. Same vacation, different year). Take a look at the pictures….wish I was back there NOW! NYC is flipping cold and un-Spring like.


Traveling to Mexico to Puerto Rico is not so much fun, but what is really unfun is a 4.5 hour layover in Dallas. So we had fun by taking the airport monorail for a good 45 minutes (circle after circle after circle)

Bucerias, Mexico to Puerto Rico isn’t exactly a direct flight.  We had 4 hour layover in Dallas, so we killed time (at the kids’ request) by taking the airport monorail in circles for 45 minutes.  #KillingTime

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Mexico 2016 Highlights

Mama and Toosh in our hungarian embroidered shirts.



Like last year, we spent the first portion of Spring Break in Bucerias, Mexico at my uncle’s beach house. My mother, born and raised in Mexico City, still has two brothers that live in Mexico. And fortunately for us, one of them has a beautiful beach house in Bucerias, a sleepy-non-tourist town north of Puerto Vallarta, on the west coast of Mexico. Here are the highlights from our ten day vacation with Nana and Tata!

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Chicago Marathon 2015

I was fortunate enough to run the Chicago Marathon  this past Sunday, and man oh man, what a rush, joy, privilege and honor it was! Sorry for so many marathon posts (YUP, fully addicted #cantstopwontstop), but here is the recap from my weekend. First and foremost, huge shout out to two special people that made this weekend possible: Michelle, my dear friend I met on the course at the Paris Marathon this past April, who hosted me and was so generous and giving; and my bestie in the whole wide world, Amy, who flew across the country to support me and my crazy habit. Thank you thank you thank you thank you. I love you! And of course, also another thank you to my running-widow-husband who allows me to disappear and do what I love… thank you!


My bib. And a ticket for a free beer after the race (didn't use it). Notice, I was in the slowest wave and it mentally handicapped me for a little bit. That said, I managed (I dug deep) to get through it and overcome that setback.

My bib. And a ticket for a free beer after the race (didn’t use it). Notice, I was in the slowest wave which  mentally handicapped me for a little bit. That said, I managed to get through it and overcome.

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Puerto Rico – Spring Break

Happy Spring Break! As mentioned on Monday, I spent the first half of Spring Break with my family in Mexico, summarized here in 5 pictures. Now we are in Dorado Beach in Puerto Rico with my in-laws.  To keep up with the 5 picture theme and little words (shorter and funnier), here are cinco pictures of our current trip.


Josie Girl Blog - Puerto Rico Playground

Kids’ heaven. Playground with multiple airplanes. It is always deserted with very few people, and we are so happy to be there.

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Mexico – Spring Break

Hola, amigos! The kids and I had a great time with my parents in Mexico (Bucerias, outside of Puerto Vallarta) last week, and are now on part deux of vacation with my beloved husband and his parents in Puerto Rico. One spanish speaking place to the next, (but Pacific Ocean to Atlantic Ocean)! As I am still on vacation mode (= no downtime away from kids, and when kids are in bed, I collapse), instead of a full post, here are 5 photos that give you a good feel of Mexico. Enjoy the brightness, color, and look!


Day 1 Yellow wall.

Day 1 Yellow wall.

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Solo Travel = Mad Face

Happy Monday!  I just (barely) survived my first solo travel excursion with both kids.  To make it easy, we made the trip to Mexico…. with a stopover…. and a forty minute drive (joking on the easy part).  All worth it to meet my parents on vacation (I meet Ken, who couldn’t take two weeks off,  next week), but boy, was it an effort!


The below (while not taken yesterday), summarizes my (our) feelings.


Toosh... Make a mad face

Toosh… Make a mad face

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Buly 1803

Paris has so much to offer….food, clothing, chocolate, beauty products, you name it. On our recent trip, I visited (thanks to a friend’s recommendation) the most insanely beautiful and luxurious fragrance and skincare boutique, Buly 1803. Originally founded in 1803 by Frenchman Jean-Vincent Bully, who was known for his signature perfumes and scented vinegars, it was reopened in April 2014 by Victoire and Ramdane Touhami on the quaint Rue Bonaporte in St Germain de Près. It maintains an old vibe with some new, modern flair (they took out the second ‘l’ in Buly to make it similar, but different). This place is incredible — old school, antique, and classic, but with new skin care concoctions that draw on the virtues of natural ingredients. All of the products are made without parabens, phenoxyethanol or silicone! What is not to love?


Classic French

Classic French

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And I am back…..

Sorry for the silence on my end. It has been a whirl-wind week with Parent Nights, kindergarten applications, marathon tapering, and a trip to Paris. YEP, a trip to Paris. I think Ken and I are the only people in the world who live in NYC who are planning to run the NYC marathon (this weekend), who decide to leave the weekend before for a quick adventure to Paris. Nothing says “rest” and “don’t do anything out of the ordinary” more than a 3 day trip 5-days-till-marathon with 7 hour per day walks and rose wine. But hey, you only live once. Crossing my fingers that this fun and beautiful trip will not hinder my marathon experience or expectations. Perhaps wishful thinking, but I am happy we did it. And since you haven’t seen enough pictures of Paris recently on the blog (here and here and here and here and here), here are some more. Enjoy!

Eiffel Tour -- haven't seen you in 3 months. Still as beautiful as ever.

Eiffel Tower — haven’t seen you in 4 months. Still as beautiful as ever.

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Flying Without Kids

Greetings from Paris! Ken and I are sneaking away for a few nights (sans kiddos, but with in-laws for part of the time) to celebrate our 7th anniversary. Amazing how time flies.  Feels like it was just yesterday we celebrated #5.  While we are groggy and jet lagged, flying without kids is a vacation in and of itself.  Here are 7 things we did on the flight that we can’t normally do.  Stay tuned for more from Paris next week!

Pre-flight. Belgian fries and a beer.  As opposed to buying toy airplanes and changing diapers.  NIce.

#1. Pre-flight. Belgian fries and a beer. As opposed to buying toy airplanes and changing diapers. Nice.

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Boyz 2 Men Marfa

OK.  Last Marfa post.  I promise (at least until our next visit).  In addition to its art scene, Marfa is also known for its food. Specifically, food trucks. (Well yes, there are only 3 or so of them, but these 3 make it a big FOOD scene). And we were thrilled with our choice of Boyz 2 Men (not the music group, ABC BBD, but the food truck).


Boyz 2 Men.

Boyz 2 Men

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Marfa, Texas

As mentioned on Monday, we spent the weekend in Marfa, Texas (and yes, ‘Marfa’ sounds like ‘Martha’ but with a lisp. Kinda like how my 4 year old son says ‘flane’ instead of ‘plane’). Here are some photos highlighting the 36 hours in Texas.


Our hotel was located 30 miles south of Marfa. So even more in the middle of nowhere. But that said, the vast country side was incredibly beautiful and soothing. The big sky, the animal noises, the nature, and the purity.

We stayed at the beautiful Cibolo Creek Ranch which is 30 miles south of Marfa. So even more in the middle of nowhere. But the vast country side was incredibly beautiful and soothing. The big sky, the animal noises, the nature, and the purity.

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Prada Marfa

Happy Monday! We just got back from an amazing, quick trip to Marfa, Texas. It was a lot of travel (two flights and a 3.5 hour drive both on Friday and on Sunday), but well worth it, as we went to attend the wedding of two good friends. Marfa, Texas is in the middle of NOWHERE. BFE to the max! In addition to the wedding ceremony, we were able to tour around the town, soak up some culture at the Chinati Foundation, and do a drive-by-photo-shoot of the Pop Art Prada Marfa store (even more in the middle of nowhere — 37 miles away from Marfa!).


Take 1

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Norway Highlights

As I mentioned on Monday, Ken and I spent the end of last week in Oslo, Norway for the wedding of two of our closest friends (the bride is a Norwegian ex-pat that lives in the States).  Holy shmoly.  Talk about a beautiful wedding and celebration in a beautiful country. Here are pictures of the trip.  Enjoy!


View from downtown Oslo


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Airplane Snacks

Whether I like it or not, I have somehow become an expert on traveling with kids. It is not my intention to be a jet setter, but because I live (a) far from my parents and friends on the West Coast and (b) in a cold weather state, it means that if I want to see my family and/or not freeze, I need to get on a plane. So, planes it is!

A lot of our life is spent at airports. Before Cruz turned 14 months, we went to the West coast 8 times. Our traveling schedule has slowed down with two, but we still spend a lot of time on planes.

As a family, we have several go-to techniques on how to manage air travel with young ones (and ourselves).  These include: taking the early morning flights (to avoid the potential of being delayed and then having more wait-time, not that that worked last time we flew), stocking the iPad with games/videos, bringing presents for take-off and landing, having extra sets of clothes/toys/books/activities, and having the perfect options for food. In terms of food..

Squeezy apple sauce

apple sauce

No mess, no clean up, no spoon, just easy-peezy-pudding-of-pie.

Bagels and cream cheese

bagel and cream cheese

A definite for morning flights. Bagels and cream cheese are easy to transport, filling,can’t be mushed, and are adult and kid friendly.

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The Agony of Fatigue

Happy New Year!  We are in Sunriver, Oregon this week with my parents, brother, and his family (more to come on Sunriver later).  It’s been great spending time with family, cross-country skiing, and eating my mama’s amazing food all week, but the trip out here… a different story.


One of my favorite pictures ever: Cruz, Zoe, and me totally passed out on the floor of the Delta Sky Miles lounge in the Portland, Oregon airport. (Yes, that is baby Zoe up top under the blue Patagonia)

Everyone has their travel nightmare stories, so I’m not expecting sympathy, but here’s ours for humor sake.  On Friday, we were scheduled to fly from JFK-> Salt Lake City at 7 AM, and then from Salt Lake City to Redmond, Oregon (40 minutes from Sunriver).  We were scheduled to get in before noon West Coast time, and have the full day to get settled.

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