Wednesday, May 25, 2016

California Love

Our big family trip this year was, well, to visit family. Our newest member, Miss Norah, had yet to visit California and meet all her west coast family. We spent almost two whole weeks out west enjoying the sunshine (mixed with a little rain), BBQs, and some time at the pool. Of course time just flew by. No matter how long we spend out there I never feel like we get to do everything and see everyone. Since our visits are only once or twice a year, it leaves little time for visits with friends. It is so hard to squeeze it all in!! 

one of my favorite photos from our country!!!

The girls did great on the plane. Charlotte watched videos and even slept a bit. Norah napped most of the time (yay!). 
It was a long day of travel and we didn't arrive until after 10pm. Of course, the kiddos were wide awake at 5:30am! After some much needed coffee we were up and running....just in time too, it was family BBQ day!!

cousins in the "hot tub" haha
Papa and his girls

ah the joys of being a kid when cold water didn't matter! 
showing everyone her big girl swim moves! Face in the water!!
Norah cuddles!!
That is the face of happiness!

We enjoyed a few fun dinners out and about....

And a trip to the movies! The Jungle Book!! Norah's first movie.

Silly time with crazy Grandma Rachel

Macaroni grill, always a family favorite!

Mid way through our trip we snuck off to SF for a little getaway. The weather was less than ideal: cool, cloudy and some rain, but we still had a really fun time. We absolutely love SF and have missed the city so much! I wish we could have stayed for longer than one night. But we did all the important things: shopping and eating. haha!

Norah's first time at Golden Gate

We did get a little bit of sunshine, and we soaked it up at the park! It was quite the hike up a very steep hill (pushing a stroller and carrying a baby) for 4 blocks, but I made it!! And the girls just loved the playground in the city.

of course we had to stop at Lefty's for Grandma! Cheers GGMA we miss you!!!
views of the city
dinner time fun!

I was bummed that it ended up raining one the days we were there, I really wanted to go to Golden Gate Park, but we discovered the Children's Creativity Museum which was perfect for Charlotte and had a carousal too! 


They also had an awesome karaoke setup. Charlotte LOVED it!! Our little performer didn't want to leave the place (there were some tears). I wish they had something similar near us! Check out Charlotte singing "Let it go" with Daddy as backup...

breakfast at our favorite spot, Orphan Andy's, in the Castro! Best pancakes!!
We had a great time in the city! See you next time SF! Now off to wine country!

My Aunt Marlene and cousin Brent live in the Santa Rosa area, and my cousin recently welcomed a baby girl, just a few months younger than Norah. We could not wait to meet up and snuggle each others kiddos! We also snuck in a day of wine tasting, because when in wine country...
Some of my favorite people in the world! Wish we lived closer!! 

at the last winery we found a picture perfect swing....

my big girl

Nana and her girls

The benefit of going wine tasting on a misty cool day, no crowds!! We stopped at a few wineries, had a lovely picnic lunch, and a lot of laughs! We really enjoyed this one on one time with them and wish we could have stayed longer. 

playtime at Aunt Marlene's...........................N: "It wasn't me. I found it like this."
silly Mama
Laney and Norah enjoying some cousin playtime 

This year we got to spend Mother's Day with my Mama (and Aunts and cousins)! What a treat!  Being in the military means typically not being home enough, especially for little holidays like Mother's Day. It was a nice change of pace. We spent the afternoon at Aunt Gail's house, had some good food and some yummy cake. Charlotte even sang me "happy mother's day" song (happy birthday but with mother's day instead). What a sweetie!!

family shot! (Sara and Peter removed from photo per their request. No scrubs allowed ;) )

mid giggles and cuddles with auntie Kathy!! 
fun with Hannah!

a cutie for your lap?!

     Pretty sure they are making the same face in this photo.....................................Uncle Matt is the best!!!

my loves.
A stare from Norah and a silly face from C. At least Nana knows what to do!
not too sure about this so called "horse"

We spent our last few days hanging out. Checking out Rachel's firetruck, swimming at the pool, the park, pedicures, and a dinner out. It was a fun and relaxing end to our trip. We miss Cali already!!
finally getting to see Rachel's firetruck!!

baby girl riding up front 

golf time

some loves for Ladybug 
park sillies!

Finally it was almost hot enough for Mommy and Daddy to get into the pool. Charlotte went in every single day regardless of temperature. I waited until the last day when the pool finally warmed to 75. It was still fairly chilly, which means there is only one way of getting used to the jump in!!
our little fish!

taking a water break. Loving the big pink cup just for her!

supervising the pool shenanigans from the shade
jumping in to Daddy!

Our trip to California, in one picture....

We had a fabulous trip. Norah loved her first trip to California! Charlotte is already asking to go back so she can swim in Nana's pool. We made some wonderful, unforgettable memories. We miss and love you all!!

Until next time California....Back to Maryland we go....

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