Out & About: Live Oak Park

Summer seems to have ended. The busy crowds are gone. Children are tucked back into school. This is my favorite time of year though. It’s still warm and I don’t have to worry about showing up some place wonderful and being unable to find a parking spot, or feeling cramped because too many people had the same great idea.

My children really enjoy Live Oak Park in  Berkeley because of the stream that runs though it, the bridges, and the bushes they can play in.

Here they are yesterday, walking around in the water, collecting sticks and inspecting rocks and bugs.

[Breastfeeding my toddler]

And earlier this year.

My thoughts on this park:

It’s definitely a wonderful park to put on the rotation. There is a grassy field for running and a playground area for those that want that. I generally try to avoid the playground areas because, while the kids have a blast, I think they’re just mentally draining for me. I can’t be at them for as long as I can be in natural areas. I start feeling restless or stressed or just exhausted. Someone always wants me to push them on the swing or I have to help them work through some sharing issues with another kid, always something, you know? But being under the trees, barefoot in the water calms me, relaxes me and the kids are much more self-sufficient. They do play pretend for hours, collect little things here and there, and just explore to their heart’s content. They don’t need me much.

The only downside to this stream is that it’s in the city and I think some people like to drink and throw their trash under one of the bridges. The more accessible areas are pretty clean but if your kids push the limits and go farther than others, be sure to teach them how to watch where they step and you might want to do a quick glass and trash pick up with them. I think we’re just going to start bringing a spare bucket to clean up the water areas we play in when we arrive. It’s a shame people feel the need to litter.

Have you been to Live Oak Park? Where is your favorite stream or creek?

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Las Vegas airport tells mom to pump in the bathroom

Another airport has been reported for telling a mom to pump in the bathroom. LAS needs to do some work to support families flying in and out of Las Vegas. No one should be told to pump food for a child in a bathroom. I

This was the tweet posted on twitter by Jill earlier today.

Earlier this week, a United Airlines employee at Dulles Airport in Virginia made the news for telling a mother to pump either in the bathroom or the pet relief area. Dulles Airport won’t have a lactation/pumping room until the end of the year. How is that okay?

[Liz @lizabethmeagher's tweet. My FB share.]

How can you help?

  • Give Jill @JGWheeler2005 and Liz @lizabethmeagher some support on twitter.
  • Respectfully let McCarran airport management know how this makes you feel, how they can make amends. Airport Administration: 702.261.5100
  • Contact Dulles Airport.
  • Ask your local airport if they have proper accommodations for lactating women.

Have you ever breastfed or pumped at an airport? Did they have a lactation room or how were you treated?

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Why do bullies attack moms for their brelfies?

I took this breastfeeding selfie earlier today while out in nature with my three kids. My toddler nurses on cue most of the day. Sometimes I take a photo to capture the sweet moment.

[Breastfeeding my 20-month-old son]

Jessie James Decker does the same thing. Lots of moms do. It’s the new normal. Anyway, she posted a ‎brelfie‬ today and when the trolls came out to attack her, saying she posed it or that she shouldn’t post breastfeeding photos online, she posted another one without shame and called them out.

Good for her!

Breastfeeding is something to support, appreciate, applaud, never condemn. Women will not be controlled or told what they can and can’t do with their bodies and their photos. Breastfeeding selfies might not be everyone’s cup of tea, something they’d do themselves at that moment, but why do people feel the need to get nasty? I know I received all manner of disgusting to violent comments when one of my brelfies went worldwide last year. But why? I suppose there are trolls typing violently against things they disapprove of all day long but why are women and children targeted? If they don’t like it, they should just move along and do what they want with their own bodies instead of telling others what to do with theirs. And perhaps they should think about why they feel that way. I know seeing breastfeeding used to make me feel very uncomfortable so I can understand the squeamishness. But I don’t understand where the hate comes from, the blatant discrimination women face every single day for breastfeeding in public or sharing their lives as breastfeeding mothers online. With all the sadness and hate all over the news and social media, seeing the love, the bonding, the nourishment of our species shouldn’t be shocking or offensive. If both men and women breastfed, no one in the world would ever harass a nursing parent, would they? If women’s nipples and breasts weren’t shamed, criminalized, oversexualized, photos like this wouldn’t ever garner negative attention.

Let’s support women. Mothers. Children. Families. Humanity.

Have you ever shared a brelfie online? What was the response by your friends and family? Why do you think people attack women for sharing their photos? 

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Out & About: Redwood Park in the fall

We had a hiking/biking date with our friends at Redwood Park in Oakland last month. It felt wonderful to be under the big trees, watching the kids roam while chatting with friends.

My nearly 6-year-old biked around and showed me her new skill of biking one handed.And hanging upside down in a tree.

Fall colors.

Breastfeeding my toddler.

This is one of our favorite parks in the East Bay Area. At certain times of year, there are beautiful mushrooms and swarms of lady bugs for the kids to inspect.

Have you been to Redwood Park? Where did you NIP this week?

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Some snaps of our September

I’m completely out of the routine of blogging on a daily or even weekly basis since I took a month long break in August. I spent my days with my children and my evenings with my husband, hardly ever cracking open my laptop. But we did so much fun stuff that I’d like to share a few photos of our month.

We went to the Eat Real Festival in Oakland’s Jack London Square.

And the Heirloom Festival in Santa Rosa.

We go for the good food and live music.

We spent some quality days at Lake Anza, Lake Tahoe, and the San Pablo Reservoir.

Biking in the Redwoods.

My kids had a blast going bowling.

And here are just every day moments.

My girls chopping and juicing.

I’m pretty proud of them, how self-sufficient and capable they are. It’s hard to not worry when they’re wielding knives but it’s a skill they’ve been working on for years with just one tiny cut for one of my girls.

Quint uses stools and chairs to get what he wants in the kitchen now. His favorite thing to do is find screw drivers and “fix” this bubble machine.

I took some 19-month-old photos of him as well.

My eldest snuggling with her baby brother.

And painting in the window one morning.

All in all, it was a lovely month.

How was your September?

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Out & About: San Pablo Reservoir

We went kayaking at San Pablo Reservoir this past weekend. Here are some of my photos of my family having fun boating and exploring.

Of course, I did have quite a bit of guilt enjoying the water when there are fires burning down homes a couple hours away. You can can see the water level at the reservoir has gone down quite a bit with the extended drought here in California.

[Walking down with their papa to go kayaking.]

[Headed out with my middle daughter.][My middle child waiting her turn, watching her Papa go out.][My eldest and her papa.]
[My little ones headed down to the sand.][Looking for shells.]

[Breastfeeding my toddler.]

We didn’t do any of the trails and there isn’t any swimming allowed but they still like it there. We may try fishing at some point but right now, boating and exploring the shore is enough.

Do your kids like being out in the water? Have you been to the San Pablo Reservoir? Where did you NIP this weekend?

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Our summer vacation

I can’t believe how long it’s been since my last blog post. Where have I been? Well, if you follow my Facebook page, you’d see I was still posting photos from my life and breastfeeding incidents regularly but if you’re not on there, I’ll fill you in. We spent an entire month on the road and on vacation, driving from the San Francisco Bay Area to Michigan’s Upper Peninsula and back. It was a wild but beautiful drive with my three kids under 6, and the slow vacation days on the beach of Lake Superior couldn’t have been sweeter. My daughter turned 4 and my son, Quint, turned 18 months old. He still refuses to wear shoes and pulls on every door handle he sees.


I’ve really been taking it slow, spending as much time off my computer as possible, soaking in the smiles and laughter of my family. But I miss posting here and I feel like sharing some of our summer photos so here I am!

Highlights of Michigan and our road trip:

I did lots of relaxing with my feet in the sand and resting with my baby.


I went on sunset walks with my husband whenever we could sneak away while the grandparents watched the children sleep. We celebrated 8 years together, 7 years of marriage this last month. <3


My girls went wild picking thimbleberries and raspberries. They made jam with their grandmother.


My happy Quint picked blueberries everyday.

I really enjoyed watching the children hang out with their grandparents and celebrate their birthdays all on one day. Here they are baking a cake together.

My nearly 6-year-old blowing out her candles a bit early.

They read and sewed.

They played on an old fashioned merry go round for the first time.


Of course I breastfed my toddler all over Michigan and across the US without a care in the world. My favorite spot was probably this hammock by the beach.


Or just sitting on the beach.

While watching my girls love life and play together.

We were sad when our three weeks were up but happy to be headed home again. Here we are exploring the landscape on our road trip.

Jumping off a rest stop table to get their wiggles out when there wasn’t anything else to climb.


Checking out a spider.


Stomping around on the salt flats in Utah.

The sunsets on the road were so beautiful.

And now that we’re back, I feel like I’m back in the groove of being home. We’re back outside, enjoying what California has to offer and our friends again.

Here we are at Lake Tahoe over Labor Day weekend. The weather was perfect.

Babywearing selfie. Hooray for sleeping babies!

It didn’t last long though. He woke up and ran to the water with his sisters.

We forgot our swimwear but it didn’t stop the kids from having fun one bit. We of course remembered our suits later on at the pool.

We went to a friend’s salt water pool today. It was a 100+ degree afternoon here! We were surrounded by majestic redwoods and the sounds of the countryside. It was easy to appreciate the beauty of this world and all that I have in my life – supportive friends and family, good health, bonding and breastfeeding my children…

And what’s more fun than a carousel with your siblings? We went to our first theme park as a family this week as well. It was exhausting but the kids loved it.

I can’t imagine a more perfect summer. I am overwhelmed with appreciation for my life and my family.

How was your summer?

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