Returning to San Francisco

Winter arrived in full force just in time for Thanksgiving.


We’ve been trying to do our usual lean-into-the-seasons-and-enjoy-what-they-have-to-offer… even if that offering is a measly 10 degrees and wind-chapped cheeks. Getting the babe on skis has been hilarious for sure too.


Luckily, in the face of all this early snow, we’d had a three night trip to San Francisco planned!

Yes, we were willing to fly across the country with a 15 month old just to get some sunshine and Mexican food.


Ok fine, we were also going see some of my very best friends in the world and their babies, but sunshine and Mexican food were a close second!

We booked an Airbnb just two blocks from our old apartment in The Mission where we lived in 2008-9ish. I was a tiny bit bummed to not experience a hotel as a guest, but renting a whole apartment made much more sense for this trip, especially since we also bunked up with pals and their kiddo.


Literally all we did was eat, walk around, eat some more, repeat. AND IT WAS GLORIOUS. Amina is a voracious and enthusiastic food fan, so it was an absolute delight to bring her to all our favorite spots like Ritual Coffee


And of course, Taqueria Cancun


Since we had a living room and kiddos who were all tucked in bed by 8pm we also did take out from Delfina Pizza, Yamo Noodles, and Mission Chinese. (For the record, I am 100% salivating right now as I type this just remembering all these meals.) It was such a treat to eat such a variety of amazing food and to not have to cook anything ourselves. It was basically the exact opposite of our daily life here.

Also filed under “opposite of daily life here” was being able to meet with editors in person (Steven went to Chronicle Books to meet up with his whole team there) popping into bookstores (like our pal Leef’s spot Mission Comics and Art) and taking Amina to playgrounds. Girl had never been to a playground before.


She would alternately get happily lost in playing and then suddenly become STUNNED by the fact that there were other children around. (As pictured above.) It was pretty hilarious.


There was a little bit of that same time-traveling feeling we had back in Morocco. When we were living in San Francisco we were hustling so hard. We’d just returned to America after years abroad and sold our first book but I was also nannying and Steven was working at galleries and we were selling our art however we could. We biked everywhere and danced and drank our faces off definitely not just on the weekends. A life of some stability, with careers and reliable income and oh my gosh kids, it all seemed EONS away. And in a way it was— that was ten years ago. So it was just kind of… occasionally freaky feeling to be standing somewhere, holding Amina, and to remember standing in that same place ten years ago feeling somewhat different, but also very much still the same. Still me. Still here with Steven. Still with these other wonderful women in my life, even if we now live 3,000 miles apart.

Obviously I’m really glad we took this trip. It can be easy to get intimidated by the logistics or traveling so far with a little one, and yes it was 1,000 times harder to do with her than it would have been without, but I’m pretty sure it was 1,000 times more fun to have her there too. I mean just LOOK AT THIS ENTHUSIASM:


Ok, back to winter! Back to home cooked meals. Back to the mountains.