the playground.


there are a lot of playgrounds around manhattan. this is nice because our space is small so we tend to live at the playground and also, variety! there’s one with a tire swing close by, another with 7 or 8 baby swings (so never a line to swing!). there are some with soft ground which is a blessing for babes like samson who are learning to walk and fall down a lot. and there are others that freak me out as a mama because they are practically obstacle courses that surely never passed any safety test! (but also how durable are these kids?! it’s incredible how they have no fear! they fall down and get up all within one blink!).

i love having so many playground close by, but am i the only mother who avoids the playgrounds with sand? can someone explain to me why those are a good idea? we track it home in our shoes and diapers and also, how long has this sand been around? we are waiting patiently for the fountains at the playgrounds to turn on. with two children who think they are fishes at bath time each day, and not many options in the area for public pools or beaches, we will be plopped underneath the playground water fountains until september.

here are a few photos from saturday morning at the playground. papa was with us which is always a treat for the kids. because papa tends to push them higher, take them down the fireman pole and across the monkey bars and do all of this with one arm because he’s strong and awesome and makes me look like a whimp. also, having a second pair of eyes and hands while we’re at the park sure is nice for mama!

these photos are black and white because the sun was so bright and cast many bright and dark shadows and i just don’t know how to deal with those when i’m taking pictures. so i just made them black and white so i can still enjoy them. hope you do, too!


^^^eleanor just entered a big ‘pretend’ stage. she got behind this gate and announced “ice cream! ice cream!” and pretended to have her own ice cream truck. she scooped up ice cream cones for a number of little kids (with sprinkles?, she would ask) and also asked for/exchanged pretend money with each of them.  we were dying. obviously we have taken her to one too many ice cream trucks in her two years of life. (but we haven’t. i feel i can count on one hand the times we’ve been.) ;) love seeing that imagination at work! ^^^


^^^papa’s gonna get you!!!!” these two together, man. family life sure is fun.^^^

  1. amanda

    so very sweet! we chose our very first home because it was located right across from the park! what a wonderful place to have fun as a family. in fact, it is where we will be tonight. ;)

  2. bea

    i love those photos!and i have a lot of beautiful memories of me playing in parks!thumbs up for parks!

  3. AM

    i used to nanny in manhattan and having more than one babe at the playground can sure be nerve racking – two sets of hands and eyes are definitely better!

    ps – great photos as always! ;)

  4. BEAUTIFUL shots! i can almost hear all that laughter! X

  5. I agree, sand is the worst! Even as an adult I’m not a fan. No matter how many times I’ve cleaned, scrubbed, and shaken my beach bag and summer sandals, that sand just never. comes. out. I can’t imagine how messy it would be with two littles.

    I’m moving to NYC soon, so I love hearing all these bits & pieces – who doesn’t love a city with a nice variety of parks? :)

  6. bri

    living by the beach, we just gotta get used to the sand. he eats it, he gets it all over and i find it in his diapers for days. but, we don’t have parks so the beach is one of the few choices we have for outdoor play!

  7. Cintya

    I sure still enjoyed the photographs even in black and white, because when precious moments are captured, color is not an obstacle.

    Eleanor and Samson are so cute and growing so quickly!
    Thanks again for a beautiful blog post.

  8. leah

    oh i love it when they reach the pretend stage! mine is just starting to… this morning she was making siren noises from her car, which neither me nor my husband ever taught her to do (but which her fire-fighter daddy was kind of proud of).

    i really try to avoid the ones with sand as well! kids seem to have a sand radar… they can tell if it is there… even if you are on the absolute other end of the park, and once they find it you are done for!

  9. Oh I’m so glad someone else has that problem taking pictures outside in the middle of the day! These are lovely though. Your kids are too cute for words! x

  10. oh, the pretend play stage is the very best. when i was a kid, we had a big, long brick deck that came off the back of our second story. i had four younger brothers and a whole troop of those fisher price cars…so they’d get in line, and stop at each one of the three windows on the back of the house while i pretended to be mcdonald’s. they ordered at the first, exchanged “money” at the second, and i gave them their “food” at the last window. it was such a good time. it’s interesting at that stage too, to see how they model different adults (and kids!) they interact with! wouldn’t be too surprised if she starts using some of your own catchphrases. ; )

    and i love these photos in b&w. i think they’re perfect that way. black and white always feels sort of eternal for me — is that a weird way of putting it? but what’s a more recurring narrative than kids exploring at the park, right? : ) they’re playful & beautiful snaps, naomi.

  11. Lindsay

    If you love playgrounds, check out KaBOOM! ( which is an amazing organization that advocate for play for all children. They build nearly 200 playgrounds a year in low-income neighborhoods!

  12. Jamie

    You’re a wonderful mama! I love to follow the enchanted life you and your little family create.

  13. Sarah

    We are waiting for the playground water fountains too. I think they start up after memorial day. So with the mid day glare… set your white balance to the bright sun icon which is for bright sunny days, and bring your f stop up to like 2.8 or 3. That helps me =)

    – Sarah
    A Girl In Transit

  14. Alia

    The next best thing to being a kid is having kids. Looks like you guys are having a blast!

  15. Vivian

    yes i agree about the sand!! i always try to point my LO to the equipment with no sand (which of course makes her want to go to the sand). i never learn. beautiful photos!

  16. I think anyone in the universe would buy ice cream from that cute little girl!

  17. hanna

    Your family pictures are always so cute Hanna

  18. marie

    My boy loves to pretend to be an ice-cream seller when he’s at the playground too! Hahaha. Btw playgrounds with sands are prohibited in my country, due to the high amount of germs and bacteria they breed in them. I actually miss playgrounds with sand… the only sand we have now is at the beach. :/

    Anyways looks like your kids are having fun! Cute family photos. :)

  19. erica

    I love the photos of you talking with Eleanor, aren’t those little conversations just the greatest <3 So jealous how close you are to all of those wonderful parks! Enjoy this beautiful East coast weather!

  20. so so sweet! that eleanor is growing so fast!!!

  21. Kacie

    So sweet! Gigi is also in the pretend phase, isn’t it wonderful watching them use their imaginations like that? I love, love, love it!


  22. lo

    oh this makes me miss my childhood!

  23. I just love your posts, your photographs are always so beautiful. In the very first one you remind me of a young Julie Andrews- so, so beautiful!

  24. Sinead

    The black and white photos look lovely :-) The ‘pretend’ stage that kids go through is so cute!

  25. Vigdis

    I feel I never talk to my husband unless we go outside with the kids and take them to the playground. Then its both quality time for them and for us, because we actually get to talk- no computers or other distractions :)
    My daughter has also entered the pretend stage- playtime gets to another level, its so fun and sometimes hilarious to listen to the scenarios she comes up with:)

  26. Ashley

    Oh it’s so much fun to watch Eleanor turn into such a little PERSON. simply lovely :)

  27. Ryan

    My daughter plays the *exact* same ice cream game under the slides at our park! Must be some secret toddler thing us moms don’t understand :)

  28. Love the black and white… And yes we avoid sand too! So hard to completely get rid of it! Xx

  29. I love the simplicity of the black & white photos – you can still get a full sense of the JOY from that day!

  30. Yun

    So cuteeeee! I could always feel your happiness through the photos, the moments you caught are all so real and precious. Childhood is the best memory ever, and you definitely record it in the best way for you adorable kids:)

  31. Kari

    I know what you mean about being grateful for an extra set of arms and eyes when Daddy can come to the park! It’s amazing to me how my husband can just scoop up our littles (how do they do that with one arm?!) and play with our babies at the park like its just a piece of cake! When it’s just me, I’m a total mess chasing my almost 2-year-old around with my newborn attached to me in a baby wrap…but at least I’m trying, right??

    P.S. I’m smitten over Eleanor’s imagination! My little Adam plays pretend with his dinosaurs everyday. It’s a little embarrassing hearing my words through his tiny voice: “No no, T-Rex! Be careful! Soft! Soft! Oh no, baby brother…sad?” :)

  32. Very cute black and white pictures!!
    Eleanor has a wonderful smile!! ;)

  33. Mina

    Your family is way to cute! I think it must be very hard for you dealing with 2 kids in that age. But you are doing it pretty good!
    Have you ever thoght about getting some extra help? Maybe an au-pair who helps you in the daily life when you are alone with the kids. You could have the second pair of eyes and hands ;)
    I just thought about it because a friend of mine has an au-pair girl from europe and they love her. Even the kids are in love. The mama says the girl is the best that ever happend to her after their kids ;)

  34. Tayler

    I know sand is a pain to clean up, especially out of those diapers and shoes! But sand play is important for a couple reasons. Sand is a great form of sensory play, and children learn by using all their senses! Also, the scooping, dumping, and molding of the sand that children do is a fantastic way to practice fine motor skills! I realize that water can serve the same purposes, but it’s always nice to explore different mediums. :)

  35. Kristin

    That playground is my daily stomping ground, my kids school. Stay far away weekdays 3-5, it’s a madhouse. Have you tried Mariners in Central Park? Perfect for Eleanor’s age, although there is sand. Isn’t that what santizer is for? Dump the shoes before you leave. Also- not sure if you know about the AMNH fountains- the best for summertime water fun. The weather is finally getting good, enjoy!

  36. Samantha

    Golly! Yes, I’m with you on the sand. I took my 9 month old to a playground here in Boston and naturally, a fistful went straight into his mouth. Of course. And I was like, “Nooooooooooooooooo………” Gross, right?

  37. So adorable! I feel the same way about sand boxes in city parks…gross! I always imagine all the rats that are crawling around at night, ughh!

  38. i love that you have a little entrepreneur on your hands! and just love these black and white shots :)

  39. Katy

    I know you’re both New Yorkers and might already know this, but in case you don’t, here are some of the best water fountain playgrounds for kids in the city!

    -Rockefeller Park near Stuy HS
    -AMNH (exit from Rose Planetarium)
    -Chelsea Waterside Park

  40. So, so sweet. That Eleanor certainly has a creative spirit… Can’t wait to see where it takes her…

  41. Tara

    Looks like so much fun!

  42. Oh my word, I HATE the sand parks too, dumbest idea ever. The second dumbest are the wood chips. My son just lays down and tries to eat them. I love the soft floored parks, my favorite.

  43. Justine

    I’m super bummed. The awesome park by our house that had a baby swing was torn down earlier this year and a new obstacle coarse type play ground was put in… sad. Now we will have to find a new park farther away :(

    Love all the pictures from your adventures with the littles at play grounds!

  44. Raquel

    I love parks!! I’m 33 years old and still love getting on the swings!

  45. Awwwwwww <3 Eleanor is the funniest!

  46. Absolutely wonderful
    I love the black and white effect, it makes nice for a change :)
    Literally every time I come onto this blog I want to have children of my own so I can make amazing memories like you and your family.
    I hope you’re all well :)
    Happy Thursday!
    Lots of love,
    Kate xo

  47. Beautiful post, as usual. Come check out the wedding fair I attended last weekend at the Mandarin Oriental!

    xx Olivia

    Olivia’s choice

  48. Mónica

    We too are far from being outdoors, we always go to a park that no sand because they love their parents not so much the truth is very clean though. The black and white photos have been great. Kisses and happy Thursday.

  49. selin

    sevginin dili yok dedikleri bu olsa gerek.harikasınız çok mutlu bir ailesiniz.tebrik ediyorum sizi.dilinizi anlamasamda fotoğraflar herşeyi anlatıyor.

  50. these are the sweetest. eleanor has such a personality already it’s so cute! i don’t get the sand either, just seems like a bad idea all around. crossing my fingers the fountains turn on for you guys soon :)


  51. Marie

    your children are so beautiful! life in NYC seems to be so sweet! love from France

  52. Mun


  53. Sally

    An ice cream truck? How gosh darn cute!

  54. Quel joli reportage photos! Il me laisse rêveuse…
    Merci pour le partage :-)


  55. Janice

    Ok. You’ve got to stop making me want children. Stop! Or don’t.

  56. eli

    you are SO not alone as far as the whole sandbox thing goes. who thought it was a good idea to put sand boxes in a city — between the rats, cats, and raccoons … EW.

    the other day our little girl played in the sand box and came home with at least a cup of sand in both of her shoes. so now there is a cup of sand sprinkled throughout our apartment. grrr.

  57. Even as a 20-year-old, I still like finding excuses to go to a playground with friends… we all deserve some swing time, ey? :)

  58. I love how their eyes just LIGHT UP when they see a park. My son gets crazy excited about the park Every-Single-Time. :)

    It’s good to have that play in our lives, isn’t it?!


  59. sara

    I love the sand. We live on the beach so my daughter lives in the sand, so she knows not to eat it/ throw it, etc. I can imagine it being a whole nother story though living in a city. FYI, sprinkle some baby powder on the sand and it comes right off. Makes the cleaning a little easier.

  60. Laichee

    Taza, you make me look forward to having kids so much :)

  61. Kelly

    Oh my goodness, how adorable! And I love how she asked “with sprinkles”!

    Sparkles and Shoes

  62. Laura

    You have the cutest children I have ever seen! I get such a kick out of their little smiles.

  63. Karen

    try shooting a wedding in bright sun! Now that’s fun :) xo

  64. Jaclyn

    I love the pictures!! Ahh the pretend stage! Love it!! Your kiddos are so cute! we love playgrounds around here too :)

  65. Carie

    Sand’s the worst for loosing socks that have been oh so helpfully buried by Kitty! Beautiful photos as always.

  66. kristy

    so cute! have you thought about the water in the fountains?? its worse than the old sand… :-) recycled water! and GERMS and disease!! gross! my kids can’t touch that water… tho it look SO FUN!

  67. Christy

    Your kids are so adorable!! I lived in NY a year awhile back and totally miss everything about it :) Thanks for sharing!!


  68. Something about the black and white photos is just so beautiful. I love black and white. although color is just as great but this these just pop with it.

    Also the pics of E taking ice cream orders killed me. SO ADORABLE!

    Your whole family is so beautiful. Thank you for sharing your life :)

  69. M&K

    Looks like so much fun. Love the photos of your little ones. Xo, M&K

  70. last time i’ve been to NY Zoe Tiare was 11 months and we stopped in any single playground we found! it was a nice and new way to discover a city we love! i agree with you: sand is a good idea only on the beach!!

    about papa… well, Zoe Tiare is completely in love with her daddy, barely care about me when he’s with us! but you’re right: daddies are strong, make dangerous things and give us time to relax a little bit!

  71. leni

    oh my. in germany, EVERY playground has a sand floor. you got me thinking about the sand. oh my.
    also: fab kids. so much happiness in your pics.

  72. you speak truth about the sand.

  73. Lovely pictures! What a gorgeous Sunday! I’m jealous you have beautiful sunshine winter is starting here in Australia not much fun! I love your blog you always have a beautiful way with words and a story to be followed with photos.


  74. Stephanie Perkins

    It’s looking like, to me at least, my man Samson is back in the Ice Cream Truck (or Stand) with Miss E helping serve those delicious cones!! What a love-bug our little helper Samson is!! Omg I could eat him up too Naomi!! I kid you not he totally reminds me of my “super” younger brother at that darling age!!! My heart just bursts with love for your baby boy S and his incredible big sister E. There is nothing in the world like being a big sister to an amazing little brother… But there is no need for me to tell you this :)

  75. such a pleasure that we can be a part of your life.
    there is so mucg love and fun and happiens in the picture … and a really good quality ;o)

    xo from berlin


  76. Lara

    Oh my gosh! Eleanor playing ice cream truck just brought tears to my eyes because my little girl was the same age when she started playing the same pretend game. She LOVED when kids (and adults) would go along with it and it delighted her to no end to serve ice cream just as someone had requested it. She just turned 6 and still likes to pretend (will even do the ice cream bit once in a while), but reading about your daughter just getting into this phase really touched a nostalgic sweet spot for me. Thank you. :)

  77. just DYING over E’s imaginary ice cream stand! i’ll take two please! xo

  78. sb

    I absolutely love your hat. Who makes it?

  79. HC

    Thank you so so much for the black and white tip! When taking photos at a friends wedding last week, I was struggling with the bright sunshine coming through the windows and remembered this little genius tip! Helped to get some brill shots. Just thought you’d appreciate knowing how sound your advice is :) x