April 27, 2009

Spring Break

The beginning of Spring Break was pretty boring. Filled with chores, Wii, X-box, riding bikes, etc. But when Wednesday night came along...we all started getting excited. Thursday afternoon we were headed to San Francisco!

We were all excited to get out of the house and out of Dayton. We traveled 5 hours to San Fran and the weather couldn't have been nicer. Everything was so green! I told Brandon, 'We are not going to want to come home!' He disagreed. 'Home is home. I always want to come home.' Well if you put it that way.

We arrived about 5ish. We stayed outside the city in Pleasant Hill. Checked in to our hotel and the kids were dying to go swimming. So we got our suits on and took a dip before dinner. Brandon noticed an Outback Steak House near the hotel...and when we passed it...he said, 'I know where we're eating dinner!' We ate a yummy dinner and then we were all ready for bed. We rose bright and early Friday morning to eat breakfast in the hotel lounge. Then it was off to San Francisco. Our first adventure was a boat ride to...


The kids were so excited to ride on the boat. Especially F, A, and M. They were so cute. F and A pretended they were sailors and were being attacked. They'd duck behind the railing and shoot at other passing boats. Too cute.

We decided to take the 'headphone' tour so we could learn all about the old prison. The kids thought it was cool to use them. Not sure how much info. they would retain but they were cute standing be the cells. As we walked passed the 'Solitary Confinement Cells', pretty depressing, Brandon walked in one. The kids were too scared of them. When he came out he had this look like, I'm glad I'm not in jail.

As we ended our tour, we briefly talked about how following the rules helps us to be free. There were so many sad stories of inmates and how they missed being free. Free to roam the streets. Free to talk and see family and friends. Free to go to a baseball game. Free to paint whatever and whenever they wanted. Little things. We finished the jail tour and walked around the little island. Did you know that there was a small community on the island? The families of the Warden and other officers lived on the island. Their children had their very own 'concrete playgroud'. Sound fun? I though the history was fascinating.
After our tour and boat ride we made our way to Pier 39. That was fun. Walking past all the candy shops and souvenir shops we felt like we were at Disneyland. We had lunch at Bubba/Gump's. How fun was that! I have always wanted to eat there ever since I saw their restaurant in Maui. The kids had their lunch served to them in Forrest Gump's fishing boat he named the Jenny. Forrest Gump was playing on the big screen and to get your waiter's attention you had to turn your sign to STOP FORREST. The opposite side said RUN FORREST. So fun. After lunch Brandon bought 2 bags of cotton candy and we let the kids play on a nearby playground.

Then it was off to the Palace of Fine Arts. Remember 'The Bachelor' with Chris O'Donnell and Rene Zellwiger? The Palace of Fina Arts was in one of the scenes in that movie. It really was pretty. And just across the street was a beach we let the kids play at for a short time. You could see the Golden Gate Bridge, lots of dogs, bikers, runners, walkers, and homosexuals. It was great (sarcastic tone)! Oh you gotta love San Francisco.

Next we were off to travel over the bridge. I was so excited. I haven't been over the bridge since I was little. We crossed over into Sausalito. We didn't stay...we just drove and didn't really see what the big deal was until we got to the little shops by the water. They were cute little shops that reminded me of Spain because of the way some of them faced the water.

Our last stop of the day was the Oakland Temple. I believe my brother, Adam, and his wife, Becky were married here. I could be wrong. We took pictures and admired the beautiful views from the temple grounds. There is a huge chapel that is just feet from the temple. Now that would be neat to go to church every Sunday right next to a temple.
By the time we got to the hotel and had eaten dinner, Brandon and I were exhausted. But the kids wanted to swim so my LOVING and WONDERFUL husband took them swimming before bed. What a good dad.

Saturday we got up and ate breakfast in the hotel lounge one last time. You know, I really like these buffets. I mean I know they don't always have the most healthy food but it's a nice treat once in awhile. M wanted eggs. Then she decided that she didn't like the eggs and wanted a waffle instead. Half way through her 1/2 a waffle she decided she didn't want that either. She wanted cheerios. And with every entree...she wanted a donut. Holy cow that child is picky.

After we were all packed up, we checked out and headed home. On our way, we stopped in Fairfield at the Jelly Belly Factory. I love factories. I love seeing how everything works together. I love the machines and the converyer belts. Sometimes I wish I had little factories at home to help me mass produce my creative ideas. Did you know it takes 27 days to make a jelly bean? I didn't. And kids can write in with different flavors and the chemists try to produce a recipe that will taste just like it. They have so many colors. The kids liked the 'Tasters' counter. You could ask for Fruit Salad or Strawberry Shortcake. Rootbeer Floats or Ice Cream Sundae. And of course, Brandon was the first to start filling bags with different blends of Jelly Belly's. He was literally a kid in a candy store.

We had such a great weekend. Thanks, Brandon for giving us great memories! It's good to be home.


ishybeanie said...

we are headed to San Fan on June
9th I will have to keep all the fun plactes in mind that you went to.

Joey and Nettifer said...

what a fun trip! I love San Fran! It looks like you had a blast! Put another magent on your board! Don't you just love the Jelly Bell factory! Yummy in my tummy the popcorn flavor is my fav!

The Seaquist Family said...

How much fun. I love San Fran, but the last time I was there I was a senior in High School. You got to love high school trips (without parents.) What a great city to visit (I don't think I'd want to live there.) Looks like a great trip. And I too LOVE factories!

Melissa said...

SF is my favorite city! I really miss it there. Our family had many great memories while living there. I'm glad that you guys had a great time. T really loved Alcatraz!!!

Geneva said...

We used to live 1o minutes from the Jelly Belly Factory in California! You totally did all the things we loved there. San Fran is such a fun place to visit! Next time hit Muir Woods. Its a collection of giant Red Wood trees close to the Golden Gate bridge. We love it there!

Emilie said...

I love the SF! I'm so jealous, but it looks like you guys had lots of fun! My roomie is a store designer for Del Sol and she just went there to check on our new Del Sol store location that will be opening shortley in pier 39. She brought me back some yummy bread from the Boudin bakery! that's a place you guys probably didn't visit, but it's a great one for next time! Love ya!

Leah Re-Etta said...

Oh I'm SO jealous! I LOVE San Fran! Next time take me with you! :)

Creswell-Hyde Away said...

Did I ever tell you that you are a delightful family?

Lisa said...

Sounds like a great spring break. I can't believe you did most of your sight seeing all in one day. I love San Fran too but we never did Alcatraz... we'll have to go back!