Joanna Goddard family portrait

Are you planning any trips this year? A couple weeks ago, our family went to L.A. to visit Alex’s mom. Traveling with kids is always nutty (flights, jet lag, meltdowns!), but California is such a tonic, especially in the winter. Here were three highlights…

Joanna Goddard and Toby

First, our beloved friend Nicki Sebastian (who broke my heart by moving from Brooklyn to L.A.) came over one morning to snap a few family photos. She has such a knack for capturing people’s personalities, like Toby’s sweet-as-pie nature…

Joanna Goddard and Anton

…and Anton’s rough-and-tumble playfulness! (He’s very into secret handshakes these days.)

Joanna Goddard and Alex

Alex pointed out that the way I’m standing looks like a photoshop error, haha. #wheresthefoot

This year, we also discovered Bird Scooters, the new shared electric scooters. Have you tried them? They’re scattered around the sidewalks; you unlock one with an app, ride it to your destination (for a couple dollars), and then just lock and leave it wherever. Alex and I rode them to dinner one night, and it felt so fun and freeing!

Felix LA

Felix LA

We were psyched to nab a table at Felix, a buzzy Italian restaurant that opened last April. One cool thing: On the menu, the pastas are divided into four areas in Italy — the north, center, south, and islands. We went for the cacio e pepe (from the center) and pappardelle bolognese (from the north), but you could also get seafood pasta from the islands or kale and fennel pasta from the south. I would love love love to go back and try more.

Toby and Anton

But the boys’ favorite things always stay the same: the Venice boardwalk and, maybe most of all, the neighborhood Whole Foods, which has shopping carts that look like cars. They’re always begging to go grocery shopping. Thank you for having us, L.A. We love you. xoxo

Where do you go on family vacations? If you’ve visited L.A. (or live there), what are your go-to spots?

P.S. 10 tips for flying with a baby, and 16 ways to travel with kids (and actually enjoy it).

(Top portraits by Nicki Sebastian. Felix kitchen photo by Alan Gastelum. Felix photo via Instagram.)