Spring break is over and we have gone back to our normal daily routine. Earlier I told you about our plans to drive to Death Valley and from there to Las Vegas, visit a few national parks and then drive back home. Well, it didn't quite go like that. Just like we also didn't fly to Hawaii or to Cancun as we planned at some point. So what happened?
On the last night before our vacation we still hadn't packed or booked any of the hotels. So not like me! Life with a baby doesn't leave much extra time, and since I was kind of hesitating about the amount of driving we would have to do, I just didn't get to doing it. I ordered a new phone and it did not arrive in the mail like it was supposed to. On three nights I had to run to the phone store to find out what is going on with that until I gave up and went to another store. I did get a new phone from there but after arriving home I realised it hadn't been activated. Fortunately they were able to help me on the phone. That the same week Amazon managed to lose two of my packages. Also a cabin I booked from Norway for our summer trip had decided to raise the price and since I hadn't noticed the email right away, they cancelled our reservation. I bought a new swimsuit, but after arriving home I realised it was missing the straps. And on our morning walk to school my daughter said on the way: "Well, I'm not even wearing socks!" I finally decided that this was not my week.
Anyway, I wasn't quite sure that it was a good idea to spend hours and hours in the car with a baby everyday, so I changed our plan a day before the trip. And where did we end up?
FROM PISMO BEACH TO EASTER BRUNCH
So we decided to head to Southern California and spend Easter with our family. Usually we drive straight there but this time we went along the famous Pacific Coast Highway and spent a night in Pismo Beach. We arrived in Pismo Beach that evening, and the next morning it was raining, so we didn't see everything the town had to offer. Before dinner we went for a walk on the beach and then ate in a Mexican restaurant. Next morning we found a fun breakfast place in Oceana, right next to Pismo Beach. This Rock & Roll Diner had been built in an old train car. Oceana beach has been dedicated to cars and ATV's, so if that is your thing, this is a fun place to visit. And for the first time I saw that a beach can have a speed limit... it was 15 miles per hour.
Over all, it was a good idea to stop half way. Next day we were not in a rush and we had a nice drive to see our family in Rancho Cucamonga. We had an Easter Egg Hunt, Easter Brunch, and we left an empty basket on the table with some celery and apples for the Easter Bunny. By night time the bunny had visited and brought some gifts and easter eggs for the basket.
SANTA MONICA MOUNTAINS AND A BOAT TRIP TO THE CHANNEL ISLANDS
When it was time to leave Rancho Cucamonga we headed to the Santa Monica Mountains to do some hiking. I wanted to see the Paramount Ranch where they have filmed so many movies, and where you can still see a film crew in action. The day went by quickly and we stayed the night in Ventura. I really liked this city, they had beach, palm trees, tacos... can you ask for anything more than that?
The reason for staying the night in Ventura was our next days trip to the Channel Islands. The boat to this national park leaves from Ventura. We were lucky in many ways on that trip; the sun was shining and we saw both dolphins and whales. We hiked around Anacapa Island and enjoyed the beautiful day.
I will write separate posts about these later.
THE MADONNA INN, SO KITSCHY
When it was time to head back home we decided to stay the night at the half way mark again. For a long time I have been dreaming about staying at the Madonna Inn in San Louis Obispo, and this time we did it. The hotel is known for its decorative pink restaurant, mens room waterfall urinal and that each of their rooms has a different theme. I would say that the whole place is a little bit crazy but in a fun way. I loved it!
The night at the Madonna Inn was so fun! I will tell you more about it later! After we got back home we realised that we had a fun and relaxing vacation after all.