Archive for the ‘California’ Tag

Better Late Than Never

Finally the dust (sand?) is settling and I’m actually absorbing the goings-on of the past several weeks, including events of our California vacation that whipped by at lightening speed. In fact, I’m just now viewing all of the fantabulous photos we snapped and can’t believe NOT A SINGLE ONE HAS BEEN UPLOADED TO THE INTERNET. So here we go with the first image (one of my faves) and more via Flickr photo album soon:

California Trip: Day 3

This morning, our second of the big California trip, we actually SLEPT. No more tossing and turning for the Catholic Peeps all night long with messed up internal clocks, because exhaustion finally set in and completely wiped us out for the night. In which case, waking up and getting a move on was that much harder, yet we succeeded and took off for more west coast adventures. And what an adventurous day we had! Here’s how it went:

  • Point Loma – Finally, something for the grown-ups in the group! Not only did we see the coast, but we witnessed breathtaking views of San Diego and the local naval base.
  • Sea World – even though we’d already visited SW in Orlando 5 years ago, the entertainment was nothing less than spectacular in San Diego. Our faves? The Shamu and Dolphin shows, fins down. Did I already say SPECTACULAR? No exaggeration there for us, especially since we sat ourselves in the Soak Zone, named that way for reasons we found out quickly. (Tidal waves. Seriously.)
  • LEGO Land: Day 2 – We really did purchase 2-day passes to this park, especially since it was the primary reason for our visit. So heading back to LEGO Land was a must-do before leaving California, thus our second trip back. With closing hours at 8:00 pm, we had @1+ hrs to take care of missed rides/activities. And you know what? We experienced the best visit of all, with shorter lines, fun ride facilitators who made us scream “Ghost Busters!” when prompted with “Who ya gonna call?”. Not only that, but one of the Picture People gave us a huge discount on the photo we’d taken in the Coaster Saurus ride, probably because we looked so freakishly odd with our funny faces. (Photo to be posted soon!)
  • Oceanside Beach – Thanks to that faithful Garmin of mine, we located the first Californian Subway sandwich shop of the vacation, a place we’ve truly missed since leaving home. And the visit did not disappoint! Those sandwiches gave the Catholic Peeps just enough energy to visit the beach before bedtime, a relaxing (albeit a little cool for my standards) way to end a perfect vacation day.

Next Stop: San Diego Zoo, etc.

Peeps Have Arrived

We made it! From Omaha, Nebraska to San Diego, California, we’ve officially embarked on the biggest summer family vacation since that whole Disney World experience a couple of years back. The shocker so far? The Spanish speaking; but mostly, the overall look and feel of the west coast. My words described it best after saying:

It’s like we’ve been transported to another planet, a place where we’ve never been before – from the jutty pseudo-mountainous areas around the coast to the silky white sands on the beach. This place is absolute heaven on earth! Pinch. Me. Now.

Lego My Vacation

Dreams really do come true, at least Catholic Son thinks so now that his dream to visit LEGOLAND California is finally coming to fruition. He’s only been asking to visit that place ever since LEGO started sending him discount passes back when he was still in diapers. Seriously. Those fine LEGO people sure know how to nail that particular market, now don’t they? No worries, because with so many amazing visitor ‘hot spots’ we can’t very well go wrong with a San Diego vacation. And there’s always the beach factor!

Anyway, being the Family Activity Director, I’ve been quite the busy camper making arrangements for this exciting addition to our summer agenda. The best part? Visiting the library and Barnes & Noble to find a few swanky travel guides. Personally, I’ve had the best experience with Frommer’s and DK Eyewitness Travel guides (prepped for Las Vegas, Paris, London & Italy using those) and today’s finds did not disappoint. So now we’re all happily flipping through these ‘lil gems:

Note to self: Silver Strand State Beach, NOT Black’s Beach. California can stand to do without a glimpse of the Catholic Family’s shiny white buns basking in the sun, thanks very much.

Smelly Summer Fun

Finally, a day that screamed “YOU CAN REST NOW, WOMAN!” and yet my eyelids popped open without the help of an alarm clock precisely at 5:45 am, the same time I had been waking up all school year long. Coincidence? Probably not. It’s like I’m programmed. Unfortunately, Catholic Hubs was all deep in sleep while I lay there completely awake. So now what? Sound-asleep-guy planned to make his famous gourmet breakfast, but apparently I was the only awake-person in the house. *sigh* Summer is not starting out as smoothly as I’d hoped.

But then came breakfast and all was good in the world again: bacon, eggs, blueberry pancakes with a dusting of powdered sugar, and steamy hot espresso on the side. Dreamville! That fine meal really was worth the 1.75 hr wait. In fact, we polished it off while I read funnies to the Catholic Kids (a tradition, even though they can easily read the comics all by themselves if they really wanted to), then we set forth into our Weekly Planning Meeting, where meals and events of the week were discussed. Coupon cutting and grocery list making ensued, then everyone took off in opposite directions: me to the gym for a Sunday workout, Hubs to the store for power grocery shopping (he beats that weekend crowd like nobody’s business), and CK’s outside for trampoline jumping.

Now that’s the summer I was talking about.

Wait – the day’s not over yet. We rounded it off with a couple hours at the pool and a visit to the library where the CK’s checked out a boatload of books for the Summer Reading Program. Then on returning home, the CK’s and I were pleasantly surprised to be welcomed by the amazing smell of Hub’s famous taco dinner. Wowzas! And the taste? Too scrumptious to put into words. Finally, cleanup time involved vacation planning talk with California’s LEGOLAND being the preferred destination, then peeps took off to do a little book reading and more trampoline jumping as I busied myself with chlorinated-swimsuit-and-towel-washing.

Ahhh, the smell of sunscreen & chlorine… sure beats smelly feet, any day.