Frances Turns 2

A few weeks ago, this little lady turned 2.
This year, instead of throwing her a birthday party and lavishing her with tons of gifts (though a big part of me wanted to), we decided to give her the gift of making memories via a family vacation. Since she was born, this is the first time we've had more than a few days to travel together, just the three of us. Birthday number two was all about making new memories and experiencing new things as a family.
Like the view of the stunning California coast and magnificent mountains as we descended into Los Angeles.
And, watching the waves crash
and experiencing the most amazing sunset on the west coast.
Frances could have watched the waves rolling in all day.
Her actual birthday was September 5th. Celebrations began at Jeannine's, which instantly became a morning tradition for the Huber family during our stay in Santa Barbara. Frances ordered her favorite, a toasted bagel with cream cheese.
What birthday is complete without a balloon? She picked this one out all by herself!
After breakfast we ventured into to town to make a little birthday purchase at the locally owned toyshop, Chicken Little. Frances chose this Madame Alexander Olivia Doll, without hesitation, to add to her growing obsession collection.
She made SEVERAL birthday wishes in this beautiful fountain in front of the hotel where we stayed.
One of those wishes was to visit the Santa Barbara Zoo, where we saw alligators
pink flamingos
and penguins!
We enjoyed a delicious lunch at sidewalk cafe Pierre Lafond on State Street, which runs right through the heart of downtown Santa Barbara.
During our afternoon rest back at the hotel, room service delivered this tasty treat with a sweet message for Frances.
Before dinner we took our daily evening seaside stroll
and shared an appetizer while taking in another stunning sunset.
We passed this little guy on our way to dinner. He was so cute and made us think of our little yorkie, Chloe, who was home in Charlotte.
 Our evening ended with an amazing meal at Tre Lune.
Another first for Frances,
she blew out her first candle!
We spent our last night in California at Shutters on the Beach in beautiful Santa Monica, where we witnessed the sun set behind the giant ferris wheel of Santa Monica Pier
and swung on swings in the sand
and found seashells.
The people watching on Santa Monica Beach was AMAZING! 
Although Frances may not TOTALLY remember this trip or her second birthday, her Mom and Dad sure will as one of the best ever.


  1. What an amazing gift...the gift of travel and family! She is such a cutie pie!!

  2. Just beautiful! What a perfect way to spend a birthday!

  3. Looks like such a fun trip! I'm glad she got to visit Californ-I-A ;)

  4. YAY! I've been patiently waiting to see these pictures!
    So beautiful. So magical. West Coast love, Baby!
    Next stop, Seattle!!

    Happy Birthday, Frances! Love you!!