Over the last two years, I’ve concentrated on crossing off some bucket list items. We saw the sunset over Santorini, I saw the Kings of Leon in concert and recently, P and I decided that an adult Disneyland trip was needed. Disneyland without the kids is such a different experience than what we are used to. P was skeptical at first, he figured that we would miss the kids (we did) and it would be awkward with no kids (it wasn’t.) We snuck away to celebrate P’s birthday by going to a UFC event in Los Angeles so we tacked on an additional day in Anaheim. We make it a priority to have regular date nights and time away from the kids, it’s the best! [Read more…]
Have you ever had those long summer weeks where the kids are bickering and you have to get out of the house? Last month I was at my wits end with the fighting and the boredom. So when a friend suggested a huge playdate at Lover’s Cove In Pacific Grove, I was first to RSVP!
It’s notoriously cold on the central coast and even though it is summer, our friends warned to bring lots of layers. I’m so happy to report that Lover’s Cove was sunny and HOT! Lover’s Cove is a beach nestled near Monterey, California and calm enough for babies to splash in or for beach loungers to lay out near the shore.
It’s about a 1.5 hour drive from San Jose so a stop in Gilroy for snacks and drinks was needed to break up the trip. Also, A get car sick so I wanted to make sure she was hydrated and comfortable before we hit the windy road through the hills and down into Monterey Bay. We met a group of mom friends who have been in my life for a long time. Our kids get along great and everyone played for several hours. They built sand towers, buried themselves in sand, nibbled on treats all day and had a blast.
I found Lover’s Cove Beach to be a family friendly environment with no rough waves and a fairly easy drive from the South Bay. We will be back as soon as we can!
Some Things to Know:
- There is a snack shack that serves hot dogs, burgers and fries just as you enter the beach on the west side.
- Parking is limited to two hours in the parking lot. There is unlimited street parking south of the beach.
- Traffic can be terrible in the afternoon so leave plenty of time when leaving the area. Rush hour commute seems to begin at 4:00pm.
Photos taken by the talented Sarah K.
We recently took a quick road trip down to Disneyland. What can I say, it’s my happy place! Walking through the gates into Main Street always gives me happy vibes. This time, we met up with some family members and stayed across the street at the Howard Johnson. We usually stay on property or at the Hilton but the HoJo had a deal we couldn’t pass up.
The first day was filled with hitting up our favorite rides. We took the time to get the girls portraits cut by the tiny shop on Main Street. We have a portrait for Amaya that was done years ago that was turned into a Christmas ornament. Surprisingly, Kiki sat quietly while the gentlemen created her profile with a black sheet of paper and a tiny pair of scissors.
We love Disneyland and every time we make the trip, we try to experience something new each time we go. One night, around 7:30, Kiki was knocked out in the stroller and P and A were on Soarin’. I walked over to Carthay Circle to ask if you needed reservations and they told me yes, but the lounge had a table available. I started to thank them and walk away but they insisted I at least come inside and rest my feet. The staff was so sweet and said to wait a few minutes, they put together two small tables with space for everyone and also in the corner so I could park the stroller. During our meal, Disneyland had a huge blackout, but the staff checked in with us as did the manager after the lights were turned back on. P had the pork sandwich and A loved the pigs in a blanket. My pear martini was delicious!
Disney Jr. Live!
One other new thing we tried was the Disney Jr. show, thanks to a tip from my BFF. The show consists of large puppets that are Disney Jr. characters. The characters do a short story but the effects are what make this show awesome for toddlers. Bubbles, snow and confetti rained down from the ceiling during the performance. Kiki danced, screamed and had a great time.
By the third day we were all exhausted and excited to head home. Does anyone have a upcoming Disneyland trip? What new thing will you try?
Last spring, Hawaii was calling so we took a trip just the four is us to Oahu. It was the very first time that we had stayed on the North Shore. We rented a house for a few days near Velzyland Beach. It was a sweet little bungalow, and the beach was a 2 minute walk out past the backyard.
We spent lazy days on the beach let the girls splash in the waves and dig in the sand. It was so nice to not have a schedule, to be able to sleep in drink Kona coffee on the front porch. The family also had a blast exploring the town of Haleiwa. We visited several year ago and the town looked so different than the last time we went, with new coffee shops and restaurants. The girls and the husband feel in love with acai (a-sigh-ee) bowls from Crispy Grindz. Four days was the perfect amount of time to soak up the quiet before hitting out next stop…Aulani Hotel! I’ll post a separate review of the in an upcoming blog post!
I’m going to be totally honest and say that we didn’t do much research on what we wanted to do in Paris. We tacked on a 3 day trip to Paris because we needed to go through a major airport on the way back and figured it would be a great way to spend our last few days on vacation. Between the food and culture, we were hoping that our days would be filled up with stuff to do.
I’m happy to report that not prepping for Paris didn’t turn out to be a disaster. We quickly learned a few French phrases and with lots of smiles and apologies for our mangled French, we were able to order food, pay admissions and enjoy our time in the City of Lights.
On our very first day in Paris underneath some gorgeous weather, I decided that I was NOT going to stand in lines. The lines for the Eiffel Tower were 2-3 hours and every major place we went there were SO many people just WAITING around to enter establishments. Not quite what I wanted to do for my first visit to Paris. We decided to ditch the touristy spots and did our own exploring on foot. Exploring let to some wonderful experiences, and here is my list for 5 things to do in Paris for first timers!