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Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Wednesday Wanderings: A Layover in Phoenix

I still need to put together a post on our adventures in Arizona, but for now I decided to put together a Wednesday Wanderings post about our first trip to the state. Back in 2012, when we first took Halle to Disney we stopped in Phoenix for one night on our way to Orlando. It was only a short day trip, but we enjoyed our time there and we're glad we made it back to the Grand Canyon State. 

Halle made the relatively short flight easy on us, and we arrived in Phoenix in time to enjoy lunch at the food trucks that they had every Friday. 

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Halle was always a great little flier - I hope her brother will be the same on his first flight to Florida

Phoenix 2012

Phoenix 2012
Halle happily napped in her stroller while Brett and I enjoyed a variety of tasty food at the food trucks

With food taken care of, we decided to stroll the practically empty streets of the city. Seeing as we were in the desert, it was incredibly hot and people seemed to not be out in the afternoon heat.

Phoenix 2012

Phoenix 2012


Phoenix 2012

Our next stop was at the Diamondbacks Stadium. We headed inside to the restaurant to cool off and get some drinks, and had a view of the field. The team was warming up for a game later that evening, so we enjoyed some cool drinks, while Halle banged on the windows and screamed at the baseball players.

Phoenix 2012

Phoenix 2012

Phoenix 2012

Phoenix 2012

Phoenix 2012

After cooling off completely, we headed back out into the desert heat. After another short walk, we decided to stop for a quick dinner. We figured we'd make it early and have an early night, since we were going to be up early the next day to fly to Orlando. 

We opted to eat at Cooperstown, the restaurant owned by Alice Cooper. We ended up eating with everyone who was headed to that evenings baseball game, so it was a pretty packed house. 

Phoenix 2012

Phoenix 2012

The rest of the evening was spent inside of the hotel room. Halle was cranky and Brett ended up with a headache, so it was a very early night. We woke up in time to see the sunrise over the mountains before we rushed off to catch out flight.

Phoenix 2012

We didn't get much time in the desert on this trip. Most of the time was spent driving through the hottest points, but we still loved Arizona. I know this wasn't our last trip to the state.

Monday, April 25, 2016

Our Weekend in San Diego

San Diego has quickly climbed the list of my favourite places to visit. As we hung around the pool and the beach on this trip I kept imagining living there - even though the act of making that move would go against everything we are trying to do with our life. Regardless, we had a wonderful time, especially spending time with Brett's sister and her fiancé over the weekend. 

We began our weekend at the Farmer's Market in Little Italy in Downtown San Diego. We had discovered it last year and bought some snap peas and strawberries since we were staying in a hotel. This time we went with the intention of buying lots of yummy groceries to bring back to the trailer, and we succeeded. Strawberries, raspberries, blueberries, Cara Cara Oranges, Asparagus, snap peas, bread, eggs and other tasty goodies made it into our bag. 


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With food to eat, we headed back to the RV Resort and packed up to head to the beach. We met Brett's sister and her fiancé at the beach at La Jolla shores and spent a wonderful afternoon playing in the sand and waves. 


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There's nothing I love more than to see my family enjoying time outdoors, getting some vitamin C and, of course, dirt under their fingernails. We got a video of Nolan's first experience in the ocean and all he wanted was to grab the water and sand, and he kicked his legs enthusiastically as the waves rolled in around him. 


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We stayed on that beach until the sun started to set and the tide came in far too close to our belongings. From there we headed out for fish tacos for dinner, followed by ice cream cones for dessert. It was one of those perfect Saturdays, that as I fell asleep, I felt so grateful for a fun day and happy family.


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California 2016

The next day we tried another farmers market in the Gaslamp district, but it wasn't as big as we had expected. Instead, we enjoyed a yummy brunch at Rustic Root and then headed back to the RV Resort. We spent the afternoon just hanging out by the pool and enjoying the beautiful weather. It was then that we decided we wanted to extend our trip by an extra day. That's the best part about not making reservations too far ahead and leaving our schedule open. We can stay an extra day, or choose a short or long day of driving. At the end of all of this, I'm pretty sure we'll still arrive back in BC by the end of April/beginning of May.


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An extra day was exactly what we needed to do those last few things we really wanted to do. After checking into Mission Bay RV Resort for one night, we went for beer... I mean LUNCH at Ballast Point Tap Room and Kitchen in Little Italy. Halle was so patient while we indulged, so afterwards we took her to Ghirardhelli in the Gaslamp for ice cream. It was the perfect treat on a hot day. 


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In the evening we met up with Brett's sister and headed to Ocean Beach. We walked along the streets, enjoyed a delicious dinner and then took in the sunset from the pier. It was really the perfect ending to our time in San Diego. 


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Nolan gets so excited to drink water from a cup, and he does pretty well too

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It's almost been a week since we left, and already Brett and I discuss going back. We miss it and how relaxed we are when we're there. The sun, the warm weather and all of the beaches always make for a great vacation. I'm looking forward to our next trip already!

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Sunshine in SoCal

It's been a while since I've updated on what we've been up too. We've just been too busy enjoying our time in San Diego with Brett's sister and her fiancee. We were sad to leave them and this beautiful place, but it's great to know we can always come back to visit them.

Our final day in Paso Robles was pretty laid back. I intended to take more photos, but only got a few. In the afternoon we went and had lunch with someone I'd known from high school (we actually went to kindergarten together, then lost touch until high school), and it was nice to see a familiar face on the road and catch up over some delicious food and beer. We had promised Halle a trip to the park afterwards, but by the time we were done eating and grabbing a few groceries, we needed to get Nolan back to the campsite for a nap.



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Lucky for us, he fell asleep in the car on the way back, so I sat next to him with the truck door open, while Brett and Halle went to enjoy the pool. Once Nolan was awake, we went over to join them.


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I loved seeing Halle trying to swim. This trip has brought out her imagination and sense of adventure, and it's been so wonderful to watch.

We enjoyed our long stay in Paso Robles, but the next day we were off driving down to Castaic. We picked this as our next step as it was about halfway between where we were and San Diego. It also stopped us just north of LA so that we didn't have to hit LA traffic after a long day of driving.


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Once we were set up we ran out to get some groceries and then enjoyed dinner back at the resort. The next day it was time to get out and enjoy ourselves. We considered heading into the city to see some of the LA sites, but even if you took our giant truck and the dogs out of the equation neither of us were too excited to do the "celebrity" thing or spend time in a huge city. Instead, we opted to do our own thing. We started  a little late, so we headed to Ben & Jerry's  first for "Free Cone Day". No cone's in sight, but we were each happy to get a small scoop of ice cream - even Nolan had his own personal dish. 


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Afterwards, we were off to Castaic Lake Recreation area for the afternoon. We enjoyed walking the paths on the gorgeous day, but had a ball finding and playing at all of the different playgrounds in the area. We all got in on the action, including Nolan who is a huge fan of the slide!


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Once we were all sufficiently hot, exhausted and hungry we headed back to our campsite. We played bubbles, rolled around on the grass with the kids and just generally enjoyed our last night at this particular RV Resort. It was so nice and quiet, and hard to believe we were so close to LA. 


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The next day we made the long drive to San Diego. We made it pretty much a straight drive down, got settled into our site at Santa Fe RV Park and then had a late dinner with Brett's sister and her fiancé  at Cafe Coyote in Old Town San Diego. I mean, when in San Diego you need to eat delicious Mexican food, right?


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Thursday we turned into a day of old favourites. We had a slow morning, grabbed some groceries then headed back to the trailer to pack a lunch before heading to Waterfront Park in downtown San Diego. We had visited it frequently during our first stay last February and we knew that Halle and Nolan would really enjoy themselves there. 


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After a couple of hours of play time we headed down the street to Seaport Village so Halle could ride the carousel. When we arrived no one else was around, so I decided to ride with Nolan as well. I'm so glad I brought him on - he adored it and squealed with excitement the entire ride.


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Friday was a day for new adventures. We started our day off at Hash House a-Go-Go for breakfast and ate way too big breakfasts (which came home with us for breakfast the next morning as well). 


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Nolan was happily eating fruit and baby food until our ridiculous coffee's arrived... then he thought we were having ice cream without him and screamed in disapproval that he wasn't getting any!

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Afterwards we wanted to give the kids some time for them, so we headed to Mission Bay Park to play at the playground and take the pups for a little walk. It was a perfect afternoon to be there.


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Seeing them play together is the best! She was crawling under the swing and he was going crazy giggling (I'm happy to say I got it on video)

As I wandered along with Nolan in his stroller I thought about how happy I was that everything has unfolded the way that it has. If Brett hadn't been let go at work, we'd still be doing the same old, same old - which is fine and all, but we were much happier spending our Friday afternoon at a beautiful park in San Diego with the kids. 


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When we had all had enough sun, we packed up, headed back to the trailed and took a walk down the street to the Karl Strauss Tap Room for some beer tasting. 


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We drank a bunch of delicious beer, while the kids had some snacks. Nolan was overtired and a little fussy, so I walked him around the patio and store while Brett picked and enjoyed his beer. At the end of our visit we got two growlers filled and a tank top for me, then headed back to the RV Resort. 

It was a laid back Friday night at Brett's sister. We ran by the grocery store then went to their place to make them dinner and hang out - it was the perfect laid back Friday night.

Our weekend was fun and busy, so I'll save our last few days in San Diego for another post! I wish we could go back already....