we just got back from a dreamy trip up north to visit family and celebrate joe's birthday early.
first, we stayed with our dear friends (also family) ryan, alissa & their baby girl brynlee.
we have never properly visited them at their adorable home in sacramento, so it was long overdue. we got to spend time with brynlee (our goddaughter), got a tour of their favorite city, and played lots of catan. they took us to lowbrau in midtown where we had bratwurst and beers, got specialty coffee at temple, and played "ladybird" while visiting tower bridge.
then we played tourist in san francisco. joe has never properly done san francisco, but I spent a lot of time there as a little girl. i was born in san jose, not far from SF, and my mom's family is all located in the bay and central CA areas. so, i grew up familiar with this city, but only from the perspective of a kid.
we had ice cream at ghirardelli, toured the walt disney family museum, visited the barking seals at pier 39, ate dinner at a chinese restaurant whose claim to fame was that obama dined their once, we stumbled across the yoda fountain at lucasfilm, had drinks at a dive bar, and stayed in an old hotel in mid city.
one of the highlights of our trip was when we went wandering around chinatown and joe found a restaurant supply shop called "the wok shop". it was filled with all sorts of cooking utensils that joe found particular percussive value in. and the owner was fascinated by us, saying "hey, I don't judge! woks are for all walks of life, ya know!"
we left with happy hearts and refreshed minds. boy, vacations are wonderful, aren't they?!