Warning: Again, LOTS of pictures.
The weekend after Christmas we went to spend a quick weekend in San Diego, per my mom's request for her birthday. It was interesting figuring out how to wrangle a group of 7 adults and 2 kids especially since we're all use to doing things a certain way. It was also hard since it was such a busy weekend in SD, they had about a million events going on. But by the last day or so, I think we figured it out. haha.
Saturday morning we arrived in Cardiff by the Sea where my mom and dad first lived after they were married. We use to go there a lot as kids to visit the beach and some of their old favorites, one of which was VG Donut and Bakery. So good!
I remember as kids we would go to the beach, go have Besta-Want Pizza and then get VGs for dessert and drive home. We didn't go to Besta-Wan because it was super crowded and one of my brothers said people can take in their wet dogs now and it kind of ruins it. I still think I'd like to go back and try just for the memories some day.
Then my mom wanted to go by and see the house they first lived in. She *thinks* it's the one on the left, but isn't positive. She is sure it was on the street though. haha.
Then we headed over to Old Town-which was our first realization of how crazy crowded SD was that weekend-and took the Mormon Battalion tour. Henry got to be dressed up as the soldier.
After the tour we spent an hour trying to find parking (not allowed to stay parked at MB) and Jacob chased a non-existent taco/tamale cart he thought he smelled...
When we finally were together again we found a mexican restaurant and had a late lunch.
I think next vacation I'm going to bring some kind of smock for eating out with Thea, she seems to know I have a limited supply of clothes with me and just how to stain them eating out.
We separated after dinner to go look around Old Town a bit while the group headed to the hotel. We let the kids run around in the plaza and Johann got a bunch of old/different root beer to try out. He was a happy camper about that.
Then we grabbed some hot churros for a treat and walked back to the car to get settled into the hotel.
Henry, as usual, was more excited about the hotel than I can explain.
We settled in and rested for a while. I wanted to go to Noodles and Co (we use to go in Utah as a treat when we were in school there and this is the closest one) but the kids and grammy and uncle hamp and anna were tired. So we left the kids with them and Johann, Aaron, Jacob and I went to Noodles and Co.
It definitely wasn't as good as I remember it, sadly, but it was still fun.
We also went to find these 'magical' desserts Jacob's friend told him he had to try but the line was out the door-forget it! So we walked around different areas of the city trying to find something not ridiculously priced to no avail. We ended up heading to target to bring back to the babysitters, but not before Aaron and Jacob made sure to embarrass and scare the heck out of me multiple times. I'm not a night time city person. Too sketchy!
Sunday morning we had our donuts from VG's and you can see Dorothea thought this was the way life should be lived-donuts, in bed, with milk while getting to watch a show.
We went to sacrament meeting at a nearby building then took off for a little family history tour of SD.
Below is the elementary school my mom went to, Hazelwood Elementary. She said it was the first place she heard about the church. She was in 5th grade and one of the teachers was showing pictures from her vacation and there was a picture of the Salt Lake Temple and she explained how only mormons are allowed inside it so she wasn't able to go. My mom said she still remembers hearing in her mind, "some day you'll go inside that temple," and the warm feeling she had about it though she wasn't introduced to the gospel and baptized for another 7 years in Ohio.
Then we went and saw the house she lived it while there.
Her elementary school.
Then we headed on the coast and went to Balboa Square (more crazy amounts of time spent trying to park).
We went through the botanical garden. Below they're checking out their scent plants.
They had some exotic birds out and I thought about slipping away...
Probably the coolest part was seeing this guy on his didgeridoo--leave it to Johann and my brother Aaron to know what it was and tell us about it. It was really fun to hear and see him play it.
Hamp's toe was having some issues so most of the group went back to fetch him and head back to the trolly and parking lot while we attempted to find a pretty walk back with Jacob but there was some construction so areas were shut off. But it was pretty and quiet for the first time all weekend!
When we got back we took the kids to the pool but it was FREEZING so we mostly hung out in the spa until it was dinner time. We all gathered in my mom's room and had pizza and watched shows together and talked until both of the kids passed out (very, very rare!).
Monday morning we went to Hash House A Go Go which was a giant success. It was even worth almost getting attacked by a very belligerent, mentally unsound homeless man right outside. Seriously one of my worst fears that I always told myself was irrational.
But look at this this deliciousness:
It was so.so.good. Even the leftovers later that night were still so good.
After eating it up there we went to the hotel, packed up and checked out.
We drove over to Seaport Village to walk around which was also crazy crowded because the bowl game teams were there.
But it was pretty.
No one was hungry yet since we had such a big breakfast so we decided to head home by way of Oceanside and stop off at the beach and walk around a bit. It was really pretty and relaxing.
My mom said she thinks for next year we'll avoid a big city stay and maybe just try to get some rooms by the beach. We'll see what we can find!
We stopped at D'Elia's for dinner--mmm and picked up some cupcakes for mi madre's actual birthday that we had once we got home.
The next morning, New Year's Eve, things were back to the usual routine...
That night we had some roast, opened poppers, played UNO Attack and went to bed early like the party poopers we are!
A new year-a new National Gallery of Art scheduling book!
Later that week we went with the Simonds and Jones families to the beach. It was coooold in Newport so we didn't stay at the beach or go in the water much (well, Johann did because he's crazy) but it was fun and the kids are definitely fans of the beach, so I'm going to have to learn to love it instead of just be surprised when I don't hate it! =)
There is nothing cuter to me than this little chubs in a swimsuit!
We found a couple hermit crabs in their shells. This one was huge and hairy and started coming out while I was holding it---gaaah.
The rest of the week was spent getting ready to go back to school and work and trying to get our lives back in order. Still working on that.
The Sunday before school and work started back, Thea started nursery and did great! She's only cried once when we were leaving but she got distracted and was fine the rest of the time.
We had a nice Sunday, complete with naps! I slept almost two hours. It was glorious.
That evening the kids helped me try to make some ice cream with the new ice cream/froyo maker I got for Christmas. It wasn't what I was expecting (it takes WAAAY too much time) but they had fun.
And then we went back to real life.