Hi! I’m Allison.

Lovin’ life, since 1980.

Mama. Wife. Psychotherapist. Visionary of the family. Recovering perfectionist. Retired singer-dancer. Lover of sunshine, movement, and fresh food.

I’m here to teach you how to have a thriving romantic relationship post-kids.

Professionally, I’ve guided other couples through this chapter.

Personally, I’m living proof that it’s possible.

Here’s my story.

A year and a half ago, I was in the weeds of life.

Always an over-achiever, my life had been a non-stop race to live the modern Canadian dream: get married to the love of my life, buy the house, reno the house, have the kids, and work to maintain said-dream.

Every day was groundhog day:

Get woken up early by our kids, make breakfast, pack lunches, hope the kids eat enough, rush out the door to daycare/school/work, squeeze-in some grocery shopping, pick up the kids, make dinner, negotiate with the kids to eat said-dinner, take turns with my husband doing bedtime/dishes, maybe have enough energy to watch a show as a couple, go to bed. Rinse and repeat.

Here’s the thing. I loved being a mom, wife, and therapist. (And, still do, for the record.)

But something didn’t feel right.

Something was missing.

It was ME. I was missing.

I had so much love to give to others, but no time or energy left for myself. The daily grind was wearing on me, and on my relationship with Arjan (my amaaaazing husband).

If things continued on this path, in five to ten years , I could only see our relationship heading in one direction: nowhere. The dreaded “D” word was my greatest fear.

Not because we didn’t love each other, but because there was no space for us.

I could not continue to live on the edge of burn-out.

Something had to change.

- Puerto Escondido, Oaxaca, Mexico -  Jessica Blaine-Smith Photography  -

- Puerto Escondido, Oaxaca, Mexico - Jessica Blaine-Smith Photography -


After many, MANY conversations, Arjan and I got clear on our values. We needed more time as a couple and more time as a family.

Taking a break from the 9-5 grind would help get us back to those values. But how?

We minimized our belongings (8 months of relentless commitment), rented out our house, and spent four months as a family in Mexico.

This trip changed our lives.

We were able to be in the moment with our kids, and with each other.

It opened our eyes to a different way of living.

We felt like we were choosing our life.

We were no longer living by “the should’s”.

We got clear on our values, and have been actively living by those values ever since.


After our four month family sabbatical, we returned home to Toronto, Canada for four months. I felt like I was having a love affair with our city: the comfort of friends & family, the diverse restaurants & culture, the familiarity of farmer’s markets & playgrounds.

It was bliss.

Probably, because I was emotionally preparing to move again & didn’t want to take a minute of ‘home’ for granted.

Our choice to move back to Mexico was (surprise, surprise) intentional & of our choosing, but saying goodbye for a year was bittersweet.

We overcame our anxiety (being intentional comes with plenty of challenges), and took a 16-day road trip to Puerto Escondido, Mexico. The journey was incredible.

We are currently living & working here for the year.

It took so much personal work to get here. But we did it, together.

We are living the dream. (Pinch me!)

P.S. - Parenting in paradise, is still parenting…you get me?!

P.S.S. - Follow us on Instagram to keep up to date with our daily adventures!

If you…

  • Feel like the daily grind is wearing on you, but don’t know how to make changes

  • Love your kids like crazy, but have lost your sense of self in parenthood

  • Love your partner, but feel disconnected since having kids

  • Long to make changes in your life, but don’t know where to start

  • Don’t know exactly what you want, but you’re ready to do things differently

...you are not alone!

Now, it’s time for you & your couple.

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Couples’ Tune-Up will give you a personalized plan on how to live your most intentional life. It’s a win for the whole family.

Check out what intentional living looks like for our family…