by KELLEY GUSICH | photos by Samantha Gleaton Photography

Sense of Community


John and Anna Araya met and became friends in Newport Beach. After a few years, Anna’s move to a new job with JPMorgan in Costa Mesa fortuitously put them both in the same office building. They began meeting for coffee and cookie breaks and there were no limits to conversational topics. “Eventually we wondered, why weren’t we dating?” Anna laughed. “And so it began.” Anna and John were married in 2010 at the Leo Carillo Ranch, and they love the serendipity that Carlsbad is now home.


The Arayas moved to Carlsbad in 2014 to be close to family, who have now relocated from Vista. Anna’s mom, Carol von Seiditz, teaches piano at Giacoletti’s Music School in the Village and her brother, Robert Ruiz, owns Land and Water Company. “We have also gotten to know a lot of our neighbors,” Anna affirmed, “and feel so lucky to live around so many interesting and caring people.” As far as interests, John likes soccer, guitar, watching sports, outings with good friends, and craft beers, while Anna adds traveling, yoga, trying new restaurants, and sleep. Together the family loves music, going out to eat or to the beach, taking the train for an adventure, maybe going out to a Padres game, or simply having friends over to relax in the backyard.

Parents: John and Anna Araya
Children: Justin (3) and Dean (10 months)
Community: Olde Carlsbad
Hometowns: John – Bethany Beach, DE; Anna – Vista, CA
Occupations: John – stay-at-home dad;
Anna – executive director at JPMorgan Chase Bank

Favorite Places in Carlsbad: Giacoletti’s Music School, Land & Water Company, Cole Library, Legoland, the train station, and any of the beaches

family_araya3family_araya5 family_araya6Family time in Carlsbad is special, with two sons Justin and Dean. While Anna works in commercial lending, with clients from San Diego to Seattle, John, AKA Mr. Mom/Cruise Director, gets to stay home with the boys. Three-year-old Justin loves anything with cars, trains, trucks, and construction, and is happy as long as he has some kind of vehicle in his hand. He attends Goddard School in Calaveras Hills, and loves the Amazing Athletes program, rotating through all kinds of sports every week. “He looks forward to beach time with Dad and always wants to go under the waves with him,” Anna shared. He also gets to spend one morning a week with Grammy, is a big music listener, looks forward to Legoland (the aquarium is his favorite), and always wants to end his day reading books. “Endless laughs with this boy!” Anna smiled. Ten-month-old Dean gets lots of Daddy time but also spends two mornings with Grammy. “He is full of laughs and is so yummy to snuggle with!” Both boys attend Waterworks Swim and love their pool time.

The Arayas love their Carlsbad lives.