This is just a blip to let y’all know we’re back from vacation! We had a great time driving up the coast and seeing the sights. I’ll quickly sumarize the trip and include a few pics for you. Micah will add some pics on his site later.
Our first stop was in Pismo Beach, which is just Southwest of San Luis Obispo. It’s a great little beach town that is really approachable. It isn’t too big, and there are a lot of little, great places to eat and shop. They have some outlets, which we didn’t get to, and a great beach. We went to the beach for a little bit, and Micah is a big fan of the sand. He isn’t so much a fan of the water, though. He quickly learned that you don’t put sand in your mouth, but still had a great time playing with his beach toys.
Driving up the Coast
From Pismo, we headed up the 1 and saw some amazing sights up the coast. Just a gorgeous drive that is worth the windy roads. (note, that’s not the word to describe it as a breezy ride, but a road that curves a lot. I had a friend that looked at a map to Hume Lake that warned that a road was very curvy, but he thought it meant breezy. he thought, “hey, I got a big pick up, I don’t have to worry about a heavy breeze.” When he showed up so late, we all had a good laugh that he didn’t know what the REALLY squiggly line on the map meant it was curvy.)
Before we headed up the coast, we stopped in Cambria, which is similar to a small New England town. We shopped a bit, found a Father’s Day present for my dad, and ate a great little place for lunch called “Linn’s Easy as Pie Cafe”. I had the best chicken pot pie I’ve ever had. They serve everything in pie tins, which is cute. They also had delicious pies and desserts. We shared a small Blueberry Peach Pie. Behind the place they had little tables in the shade by some big pine trees and a large windmill. It was just a great little place to eat that I can’t wait to get back to.
We were planning on stopping by Hearst Castle, where William Randolph Hearst lived. But we decided not to because the tours were a couple hours and we didn’t think Micah would tolerate it. We spent more time in Cambria and drove up the coast. We stopped in Big Sur and found a wonderful, little oasis in the middle of the forrest. They had the coolest tree houses there, which I’ll possibly throw up pictures of. Oh, and gas was $5.09 there. Thankfully, I didn’t need any.
Monterey is a town that grew quickly in the 30’s and 40’s with the sardine business exploded. They were bringing in so many sardines, that they were chopping them up and using them in fertilizer and chicken feed. But then it quickly died out as the dearth of sardines dwindled. Now they have Cannery Row, which is a bunch of big, old mill buildings restored as shops. On the end is the Monterey Aquarium, which is built to look like an old mill building. It’s a very picturesque part of the city.
The aquarium itself was a fun highlight of the trip. They have a gigantic 1,000,000 gallon tank with 100 pound tuna, sharks, and other cool fish. They have a big jelly fish display that was beautiful, and plenty of child friendly things for Micah to play with. He did get totally freaked out at a touch pool where a couple baby sharks (not sure they were sharks, but they looked like it) decided to fight and jumped out of the water and splashed everyone. Micah was quite traumatized.
We also drove down the 17 Mile Drive they have there and got to see the Pebble Beach Golf Course that often hosts the U.S. Open and is one of the most picturesque (word of the day) golf courses in the world. The 18th hole goes along the coast with the waves crashing up against the fairway and the clubhouse oversees the 18th green. We sneaked down there and watched a foursome finish their round.
Our last couple of days was spent relaxing in Santa Barbara. We were a little disappointed with the hotel, as it was incredibly misrepresented on hotels.com. The website says that they have all kinds of things there like a jacuzzi, a children’s pool, and an outdoor heated pool. They had none of it. It was a great little bed and breakfast that would have been fine if it was just Leah and I, but with Micah, it was quite cramped.
We spent the days walking downtown, doing some shopping, visiting the Santa Barbara Mission (which is really old and beautiful), and lounging on the beach in the evening. We waited until the sun was going down and went to the mostly empty beach and played in the sand. We bough Micah a bubbles blower that he loved and we spent time sifting sand and throwing sand on the blanket dad was laying on. It was a very relaxing end to a wonderful little vacation.
It was quite the change in vacation that I’m used to, though. It was a transition into the family vacation, where you are doing things for the child more than for the parents. We hit up quite a few parks and playgrounds, which was fun, too. The lunch and dinner times were difficult, as Micah was tired of sitting in cars and forced us to leave a few restaurants early. We ended up eating a few meals in parks, and let Micah run around. It was a tough stage to take a child on a long road trip. It was a great vacation, but also a tiring one.