I swear I would move to California if not for the housing prices. I would miss North Carolina, but I would console myself with a big plate of vegetables that had been grown right down the road (9 months out of the year!) and glass of wine that had been pressed right down the street. Really, for this locavore, there is nothing better than almost 2 weeks filling up on the extraordinary friendship, food, wine and sunshine that California has to offer. Here are some pictures. (We didn't manage to get very many because once again we were struck by the curse of the travelling camera - our batteries ran out and the new ones we put in didn't work.) You can find more photos supplied by our dear friends and hosts on my Facebook page.
The first part of our trip was spent in San Francisco where I had a maternal health conference. That's right, folks, my work paid for me to take this trip. Life is very, very good. While I was in the conference dh and ds made the most of their time by hanging out at the ports, taking a ferry, riding the cable cars, exploring the streets and a much-too-short trip to the amazing Exploratorium. (Really, it sounds like you could never exhaust the wonders of that place. I can't wait to go myself next time around.)
The conference may have afforded the trip, but our raison d'etre was time with our dear friends. They hosted us for a glorious week. The whole visit was lovely and every day offered some new delight - like roasting marshmallows in their home-made fire pit. It doesn't get much cooler than that!
It doesn't get much cooler, that is, unless you're a kid and have the opportunity to eat an organic chocolate bar with your best friend while watching the movie Cars.
Last year we were blown away by the beauty and majesty of the Redwoods. This year we were wowed by the return of the Monarch butterflies. It was hard to capture but the skies literally filled with thousands of dancing butterflies. Pure magic.
The butterflies were amazing, but these boys also knew how to put on a good show.
Our last day, saying goodbye to my dear friend - but never for long.
And one last thing: remember how I had been living with unpleasant upper respiratory symptoms for months? Gone after our stay in California.