McLean Vacation

may07As I mentioned earlier, we went up north to attend my Grandpa’s memorial. Here is a little re-cap. If you don’t want to read and just want to see the pictures you can go here.

Day 1: We left around 3:am on Friday morning (it’s not because we are insomniacs, it’s so we can have a few hours of peace while driving. We made it to our destination in about 7 hours which wasn’t bad at all. We checked into our hotel, which Jen hooked up – an amazing room at a great price! (she’s so good at that). We cleaned up, and headed east to Napa (one of our favorite destinations). On the way we stopped at Carl’s Junior where I had the pleasure of enjoying one of the best hamburgers ever: The Grilled Teriyaki Burger. Now I am in no way a big CJ fan – but this burger was amazing! I highly recommend it.

So onto Napa. We got there easily and went to one of our favorite wineries where Macy promptly decided that she was having a bad day, Miles decided to join in. Then I got attacked by pollen and had a huge allergy attack; awesome. We drove thru Napa though and saw some beautiful country while the kids slept. Then back to Sacramento… ha ha, on a Memorial day Friday out of the Bay Area! What were we thinking! A one hour drive turned into three with two very unhappy kids. But we made it back and actually had a great day.

Day 2: We woke up and had breakfast with my mom at our hotel – that was fun, the kids love hanging out with their grandparents. Then we went across the street to check out my parents hotel, the kids ran wild in their room for a bit. Then back to our hotel where we jumped in the pool for a couple hours before getting ready for the memorial.

The memorial was great. It was good to see family from all over the US and Canada. My dad MC’d, Emily, James & Travis performed a song, a piper played, lot’s of people spoke about grandpa George, ‘and there was much rejoicing’. The kids were great – everyone loved them. Then we hit pizza afterwards where Miles played video games with his ‘bag of money’ from my dad (hey dad, I could use a bag of money!). Miles made a new best friend with my cousin Mario, who played video games with him for the entire time. So afterwards we hit the pool again with more family – it was great to reconnect.

Day 3: I wanted Jen to see Santa Cruz, so I thought we would just shoot over, maybe a couple or three hours… oye! There is one highway to SC, the 17, and it was jammed with two accidents – it took us forever. We didn’t get to SC until 3:pm. Everyone was a little grouchy from being in the car all day, but we made the best of it. We hit the boardwalk where Miles and Macy got to enjoy some rides together, we got pretzels, drinks, took pictures, saw the sea lions (which Miles loved!), walked the pier, and had a really fun time.

Then we headed down to our hotel in Marina – another deal Jen hooked us up with. The drive to Marina was a couple hours but the kids were sleeping so it was nice. Jen and I just enjoyed hanging out and talking and taking in some amazing scenery. We got to the room, got some groceries at a local Albertsons, and just hung out before turning in for the night.

Day 4: This was one of our favorite days. We woke up and had breakfast at the hotel, then we hit the beach. It was cool and overcast at first, but then the sun came out and it was awesome. The kids just loved running around and playing, of course Macy wouldn’t venture off the blanket (she doesn’t like sand on her feet). We spent a couple hours there just enjoying the beach and each other.

Now it was off to Santa Barbara – another one of our favorite destinations. This was the most beautiful part of the drive down Highway 1. We kept seeing places that we wanted to stop, but the kids were sleeping so we decided to just make good time while they slept. We ended up in Cambria, which was awesome. We stopped for lunch at the West End Bar & Grill – they had fish & chips! Then we walked up and down the main stree, got some ice cream, which Macy decided to accessorize herself with! Check the pics.

Back on the road for a couple hours down to Santa Barbara. We looked around for a good deal on hotels, there weren’t any, so we just picked one we had stayed in before. We jumped in the pool for a while and then hit the sack.

The next morning we ate at the hotel and then headed into town. We rented one of those four wheeled bikes, strapped the kids into the front and pedaled around Santa Barbara for an hour or so. Macy loved it, Miles complained for about the last half of the trip. We returned the bike and walked into downtown for lunch – a half mile hike of which most I was carrying a 40lb boy! We ate at a really cool little restaurant, just enjoying each other.

Then we hit the beach for a couple hours – this was a blast! Miles was up and down the beach, jumping in the water, throwing rocks, collecting shells, and just being a boy. Macy actually decided to test walking on the sand, but only with her shoes on. We had such a great time, no crowds, no distractions, just our little family hanging out – we were blessed.

Then it was onto home. This was easy too, just a nice drive through LA. The only hiccup was that I really wanted one of those Teriyaki Burgers from Carl’s. I can say with certainty that there are absolutely no Carl’s Juniors off the 10 freeway! We missed two on the 15 before getting to Magnolia past the 91 where we finally stopped. The bummer was that that Carl’s must have forgotten to send their employees to ‘Teriyaki Burger Making School’ – it was awful, what a letdown. But if that was the worst thing that happened then I’ll take it.

So all in all it was a great trip, full of new memories with Jen & the kids.

One thought on “McLean Vacation

  1. Dad

    Hi Alex!

    Great commentary on your trip. Contrary to popular belief I am not a MONEYBAGS. Miles was so cute going around asking for quarters I just could not resist since I had been saving some pocket change for awhile. He had a blast playing video games with Mario. Glad you had a good trip.
    Love,
    Dad

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