Thursday, May 17, 2007

Travelog: To LA and back.

Get ready for a long post. It has taken me a while to get our trip to LA posted because my computer is dying. Anyway, I think I have gotten it now, so here goes.

Our trip started out great, but about 4 hours into it everyone was ready to kill Carter. He was being a TOTAL boy and spitting on his hands and wiping it on his sisters. YUCK!! So, we took a couple hours to visit with Blake and Missy and the boys. After we got some energy out, the kids slept all the way to Mesquite, NV. We stayed overnight in a hotel for $29! It wasn't a 4 star by any means, but it was a bed and shower, so it worked.

After separating Carter from the girls, we took off again. Alyssa would ask us the name of EVERY town we passed through, so finally in Vegas, we bought her her very own map. She loved it.

We made a lunch stop in Barstow, CA at McD's and we couldn't resist taking a picture with this great big cactus. The kids thought it was pretty cool.

Gas prices weren't cheap as you can see. We thought this would be a great heirloom picture for our kids someday. When they are grown and gas is $7 a gallon they'll look at this picture and laugh at how expensive their parents thought gas was way back in 2007.

In Tehachapi, CA there was a HUGE wind farm. Windmills stretched on both sides of this hill. It was awesome and a great relief to see something other than desert.

We made it to Quin and Natalie's place in Bakersfield, CA on Friday evening. The next morning we all got up and drove about 2 more hours to Santa Barbara and took a whale watching excursion. Santa Barbara is BEAUTIFUL. It is in my top 2 or 3 most beautiful places on earth. I definitely want to go back.

Here we are getting ready to board our catamaran, the Double Dolphin.

Getting ready to leave the dock.

First sighting!! Sea Lions! Carter has played sea lions everyday in the tub since this. It's hilarious.

We were able to sit right up front on the boat. The water would splash through these nets when we would hit big waves. And let me tell you, we hit A LOT of big waves!!

Next sighting! Dolphins!! These were so much fun to watch. They swam really close to the boat and just didn't even care that we were there.

Third sighting!! Wait a minute....That's Kate's sandal!!!! Sure enough she flipped it overboard.

We told them it wasn't a big deal, but they stopped the boat and fished it out for us anyway. How embarrassing.

Remember those big waves I told you about? Well, I got sick. The captain was so nice and gave me ginger ale and let me drive the boat to see if it would help. And it did, while I was driving, but notice the poor green girl next to me? We had to take turns driving.

I didn't feel so well while she drove.

Sure enough, I barfed. Thanks to my lovely brother for capturing the beautiful moment.

We never saw any whales, and honestly could our family have been more of a problem during the ride? (Don't answer that.) But hey, we got vouchers to go again and I'll be sure to take my Dramamine beforehand.

Next stop, the beach for a picnic. The kids wanted to play in the water REALLY bad, so we drove all over town looking for a place to buy towels. We never found one, so I told the kids they were just going to have to wade and NOT get wet. Honestly it was too cold anyway.

So, we arrive at the beach and not two minutes later (no exaggeration) Alyssa's shoe slipped off in a wave and she dove in after it! So much for not getting wet.

A cute shot of Quin and Natalie.

We enjoyed a picnic on the beach. It was a lot of fun to have the sound of the waves crashing behind us. The kids had fun collecting sea shells and could have stayed for hours had it not been so blasted chilly.

Family shot.

Kate HATED the sand. She wouldn't touch it for anything. She would sob if we tried to make her walk on it. We would try to set her down and she would curl her legs up underneath her as tight as she could. The picnic blanket was a little jail cell for her. She wouldn't even try to get off it. It was pretty funny.

After our picnic, Quin and Natalie drove back to Bakersfield, (the long way, don't take Highway 33 if you ever go there), and we drove on to Pasadena and stayed in a hotel. The next morning we were off for a bit of sight seeing in the L.A. area.

First stop, the Rose Bowl. We couldn't get very close because something was going on in it that day. Don't know what, but at least Jarom got to have a glimpse of it.

On to Hollywood!

We took a small stroll down the walk of fame and Halle was ecstactic to find a star with her name "spelled exactly the right way" on it.

We also browsed the handprints and autographs in front of the Chinese theatre.

John Wayne

Johnny Depp

The Governator

After a quick lunch at a delicious deli right next to Kodak Theater, we made our way to La Habra to pick up our trailer. It was in WONDERFUL condition and the family selling it was so great to us. They were very friendly and it was fun to meet them.

We hitched up and were off again!

We made it as far as Mesquite again, and stayed the night in the free RV parking lot at the Casablanca hotel. (How's that for cheap?) Here the kids are enjoying their very first breakfast in the trailer. (Not real homemade I know, but it's still breakfast.)

Next stop, IDAHO!!!

We did make it home all in one piece and we even still love each other. Now we're ready to take the trailer camping and get some use out of it!