San Jose del Cabo (November 2017)

San Jose del Cabo (November 2017)

The sun, the sand, and great friends made Cabo an amazing trip for our family.  There were six adults and five children which made for a perfect vacation ratio.  Both of our kids had one of their best buddies to play with all day while enjoying a secluded beach and house in Mexico.  All the adults were on the same page; wake up with the sun/kids, coffee, apply sunscreen, chase after kids, prevent fights and drowning, more sunscreen, and repeat.  The evenings got a little more quiet as the sun went down.  We were able to enjoy a cocktail and great conversation while the kids continued to play and our dinners went late into the night.  The days blended into one which is the magic of Mexico.  We feel grateful to have friends to do this with and for the memories our kids made at their tender age… This posse abroad is just getting started.

Things to remember:  Sunrises and sunsets, tide-pooling for sea creatures, Flora Farms, Johnny falling in the pond, being off the grid for water and electricity (and running out of both), John motorbiking in Baja, a continual face-off with the waves, secret plans by Charlotte and Pax, adult dinner at Acre (miscalculating the exchange rate by a zero – oops!), 9 Palms Beach, massages, an epic bonfire on the beach, the stars, and so much more where words and pictures fall short.

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Paris in November

Paris in November seemed like a lovely idea.  John was working in Europe and after a long work trip, he asked me to meet him in Paris for the weekend.  I obliged.

It was a quick trip so we tried to stay on Utah time as much as possible, meaning we stayed up until 3 a.m. and slept until noon (something we haven’t done since becoming parents).  We were finally able to do as Europeans do and eat dinner at 9 pm.  We found quaint, “locals only” types of restaurants and enjoyed talking the night away in dim candle light until closing.  We would then wander back to our hotel to enjoy a glass of wine and do the same for a few more hours.  It was thrilling to know this type of romance exists within us and in this beautiful city where we found many others feeling the same.

Things to remember:  The incredible Four Seasons Hotel George V in full Christmas regalia, John taking our kids with us through Polaroids he kept in his wallet, walking in the rain, slow dancing to Perfect, feeling extremely grateful.

When the mundane part of life creeps up on us, we know we will always have Paris.

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Last July we were lucky enough to visit Bali.  John was working in Asia for a couple of  weeks and in-between Singapore and China he had a free weekend.  We decided to feed our wanderlust souls and meet at a tropical location in Southeast Asia.  Bali seemed a wild, enticing and obvious choice. 

Bali was amazingly complex with sandy beaches on the coast and rice paddies in the mountains with an underlying spiritual presence throughout.  The people were humble and kind.  I actually had my first experience with meditation here, thanks to John.  At one point I half jokingly said “we ate, prayed, and loved through Bali” as Julia Roberts once did 😉  We felt free and calm and in love.  We missed our kids but enjoyed our time alone in such a deeply foreign place.  We spent most of our time on the beach side in Nusa Dua but explored to Ubud for one day to see the monkeys and rice paddies.  Our short visit left us enthralled and hopefully coming back someday when we get that itch again to travel to the other side of the world.  

A few things to remember:  the Rock Bar that faces 1000’s of miles of open ocean, people flying kites, how they spelled taxi, feeling like ballers when we looked at our bank balance in Rupiah, and celebrating our anniversary for about the seventh time that summer.


London and Paris 2017

London and Paris 2017

We adventured to Europe with Charlotte AND Johnny for the first time; a monumental experience for our little family.  The kids and I took the direct flight to London to meet John after a long work week.  We were able to spend a weekend in London and then Paris for the rest of the week.  It was probably our favorite trip as a family so far.

The trip started off with a pretty flawless flight to London and of course we were all so excited to see daddy after a week away.  (John met me after Customs with a coffee in hand:-))  We enjoyed London’s beautiful parks and great food!  Our most anticipated moment was seeing Lion King live at the Lyceum theater.  We all loved it!  Charlotte danced in the aisle and Johnny, in a moment of complete audience silence, shouted out “Scar is not nice” for everyone to hear.  The kids had their own room connecting to ours and they woke us up at 3 am the first night when they broke into their minibar for a jet lag party with KitKats, Sprite, M&Ms, etc… all memories we never want to forget.

Highlights from London:  The swans, a phone booth, The Lion King, Diana Memorial Playground in Kensington Gardens, break dancers in Piccadilly Circus.

Below are pictures from London (Paris follows):


After London, we found our way to the lovely city of Paris via the Chunnel (not sure the kids totally understood the awe of being on a train under the ocean).  Paris did not disappoint any of us.  We visited a new park every day and planned our meals accordingly.  The weather was warm and sunny but not too hot.  We could wander for hours with the kids while stopping for gelato, a carousel, or to pet the next cute dog.  The parks, food, weather, and the people made five days in Paris feel magical.  Of course, there were meltdowns and Johnny was asleep in my arms by the time we finally made it to the top of the Eiffel Tower, but we thoroughly soaked in Paris on a new level.  Experiencing this together as a family makes it oh so special and I hope we never forget some of these memories.  

Highlights from Paris:  Arriving on Mother’s Day, the top of the Eiffel Tower, Versailles, Tuileries Garden, Jardin d’Acclimatation, Mr. Pistachio, two cute kids named Charlotte and Johnny.

Below are pictures from Paris:



Christmas in Mexico 2016

Here we are again… escaping the hustle and bustle and/or running away to Mexico for Christmas.  The sun, the sand, the chips and guacamole, the seven days alone as a family is what Christmas means to us (mostly the later).  Santa subtly dropped by with a Barbie and a Captain America, which were both forgotten about within an hour as we made our way to the beach, and so went Christmas 2016.

We spent endless hours in the pool and at the beach.  This trip Johnny’s confidence in the water was at an all time high.  He seemed to think he could swim just like Charlotte (bless his heart).  John and I never took our eyes off of him for a solid seven days.  Charlotte pushes him in every way, which is mostly a positive.  This theme lead into one of our adventures of “swimming with the dolphins”.  Charlotte set the standard and Johnny followed.  They both rode the dolphins, fed and danced with them, and mostly were the coolest kids when it comes to anything new and challenging.

The next highlight of the trip was Charlotte surfing.  John and I had scheduled a day to surf and thought we should have Charlotte join us.  Of course, within minutes, she was up on the board and gliding gracefully to shore.  Her intensity and coordination combined with her inner mermaid made surfing only natural.  I stand amazed.  (Video below)

One more thought to add to our journal is when I tried my hardest to get the perfect “Christmas/beachy” photo of Charlotte and Johnny.  We brought down the Santa hat and the reindeer antlers along with the fancy camera.  After about 20 minutes of enticing them to get on board or just to indulge their mama, I totally gave up and captured everything that is Charlotte and Johnny (also pictured below).  Maybe this means staying in the moment and embracing the chaos – things you slowly learn as a parent.  Thank you, Charlotte and Johnny, for the lessons you give us daily.

I’m especially grateful for the progress we’ve made as a family which made this trip so fun.  I’m also extremely grateful for the opportunity we have to spend this time together over Christmas as a family in Mexico.  It might not be traditional, but this is our Mellor family tradition.  Feliz Navidad!


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Munich, Germany (Nov 2016)

Maybe it’s the charming cities that feel like Hansel and Gretel, the warmth and heartiness of the people, or possibly it’s the beer and hearty food that makes us love this country.  Whatever the draw is, Germany feels close to home.  Both John and I can trace part of our ancestry to Europe, so it’s only natural we have a soft spot in our hearts for this place.

Munich seemed to sum up all of the above plus more.  It was a bit colder than expected but we found great comfort in pork knuckle and beer.  John had a few days off of work when we were able to explore and experience (sans children).  I found plenty to do while he was working… mostly wandering alone for the first time in months.  We loved touring and staying in Munich but then found ourselves on a train to Salzburg, Austria for the day.  We talked, ate, drank, and lived like Europeans for a short while (and also froze our butts off). 

Our last stop was Hamburg where we were both surprised by the beauty and charm this city had to offer.  It didn’t have quite the countryside feel of Munich, but we found ourselves, once again, loving this country. 

John and I had eight days in total together in Germany without our kids.  I started to unravel the last couple of days, but pretty sure the kids didn’t skip a beat.  It was much appreciated adult time and all the things a (young) couple in love needs 😉  Love you, Germany.

Below are pictures from Munich:20161114-jc3a205820161114-jc3a206720161114-jc3a204720161112-jc3a196320161112-jc3a196620161112-jc3a195920161112-jc3a199420161114-jc3a205220161112-jc3a200520161115-jc3a209420161115-jc3a2105img_5427img_5425img_5424

A few pictures from Salzburg:20161113-jc3a2019img_5437img_5439

Pictures from Hamburg: 20161117-jc3a212820161117-jc3a213820161117-jc3a215920161117-jc3a217120161117-jc3a216320161117-jc3a221320161117-jc3a222320161117-jc3a2249

Washington, D.C.

We were beyond excited to see our nation’s capital for the first time as a family.  The intensity was at an all time high with just a few weeks to go before the 2016 Presidential election.  Our dear friends were so gracious to give us a behind-the-scenes tour of the Capitol Building and The White House, as well as experience Washington D.C. sites like the zoo, and the Natural History museum with an insider’s touch.  Thank you, Kennedys.

I suppose our kids will most likely remember the “sleepover” or licking the carpet of the West Wing (a strange urge Johnny had), but that’s okay.  We walked away feeling even more proud to be American.  We’re going to celebrate democracy, hold our heads up high and say thank you for letting us live in this country we call America – the land of the free and home of the brave.  We’re forever indebted to all of those who’ve gone before us to create such an incredible country.   

Love, the Mellors

(Pictures below were taken with an iPhone while managing 2-4 children at a time)