Even though we were barely unpacked and recovered from our China trip, we decided to pack up again and head somewhere fun for the three day holiday weekend (Memorial Day). We don't have many of these so it seemed a shame to waste one. Plus, now that we know our girls can sleep in a hotel bed, we're trying to make up for all the lost long weekends of the past two years. Besides, this is our last year before they're in school (Pinch me, please! Can that be true!?!).
May 24, 2008: Saturday morning, we loaded our suitcases into the van and headed to San Francisco (Interestingly, we seemed to have as much luggage for two days in San Francisco as we had for 4 weeks in China). We found a nice hotel right on Fisherman's Wharf and spent the next 24 hours exploring as much of The City as possible. The girls LOVED the cable car and had a blast running around Ghiradelli Square.
First on our agenda was the SF Zoo. The girls love animals and visiting a zoo is always way up high on their list of favorite things to do. We saw the usual assortment of beasts, rode the steam train, ate some overpriced food and had a wonderful time! I'm not sure what's up with the peacocks this time of the year but they sure were frisky! This lovely fellow was more than happy to follow us for several minutes and strut his stuff for our camera.
We had a delicious dinner at Aliotos where the chef was very accommodating and agreed to cook up two grilled cheese sandwiches for the girls so Mommy and Daddy could enjoy some of San Francisco's best seafood! When Andrew and I were dating, this was one of the first places he took me and Michael. Michael wasn't a vegetarian back then and was just a little kid - barely 12 (next week, he'll be 20!). A few years later, we came back with my brother and sister in law. I remember where we sat each time we dined there. Today was our third visit and I often think about how it would have felt to have a crystal ball way back on our first visit and be able to look into the future and see that the third time we walked through those doors we'd each be holding one hand of our two daughters!
I wonder what our 4th visit will be like. I'm already trying to imagine it!
May 25, 2008: Sunday afternoon, we checked out of our hotel in SF and headed south to Half Moon Bay. We stayed at the Ritz (something nice to do once but really much too extravagant!). The grounds were gorgeous and we strolled along a path flanked by beach cliffs on one side and a velvety golf course on the other. The view was incredible but it was a bit overcast so not too many of our pictures turned out.
Gwen started out in a really rare and quite miserable mood (no nap) and we got plenty of disapproving looks from just about everyone as she stood on the path and wailed. Daddy finally pulled her out of it by showing her how to roll down a little hill in the grass.
For the best part of an hour, the kids ran up and rolled down that small grassy hill with their Daddy (while Mommy took pics). They laughed and romped and rolled and never wanted to stop even though all that grass caused Gwenny and Mommy to discover allergies we never knew we had! Seriously, we sneezed about 100 times each! We went back to the room and ordered room service for dinner and lounged around and snuggled in our two queen sized beds and watched cartoons.
May 26, 2008: Monday morning, we checked out of the hotel and came home. It's nice to have these little trips but oh-so-nice to be back home! At least that's how Mommy and Daddy feel about it. Gwen and Maddy protested as soon as they started to notice familiar scenery and told us "I don't wanna go home! I wanna go hotel home!"