Have I ever told you that I love San Francisco? Because I’m not sure you know that yet. I fell in love when I was there in December (I promise I’ll come back and finish that series sometime!), and the only way you would know is if you follow me on social media. So this is me telling you! I was lucky enough to get to go twice when we were in California in October, once on a driving tour, once on a walking tour. Our tour guide for the driving tour was my aunt’s mom, who grew up in the city, and so knew a lot of fun anecdotes.
On part of our driving tour, we stopped at the Legion of Honor building, and it had this fountain out in front. Bunny had the idea of having me pose so that it looked like the water was coming out of my mouth. I never think to take these kind of classic, touristy type photos, but it was a lot of fun, and I love the picture! It makes me laugh every time I see it, because it makes me think of Bunny, and she thought it was the funniest thing ever, which it kind of was to us!
There was also this piece of art, and every time I see it, it reminds me of the Avenger’s symbol if it grew antennae and got knocked to the side. Just me?? I guess the Avenger’s symbol is basically just an “A” in a circle, and this looks like a crooked “A” so it’s not too surprising.
We stopped by the beach as well on our driving tour, since we haven’t been to the ocean in a long time, and this was actually my first time on a California beach!
The beach is one of my favorite places in the world, which I always forget until I get there. I could spend an hour just sitting on the beach, thinking, letting the wind blow through my hair, listening to the ocean…ahhhhhh…
We visited Pier 39 and saw the seals, and got lunch. I ended up getting fish tacos from Boudin. (Either that, or it was one fish, one chicken…but I think I went for two fish because, when in Rome…) Another first time experience (I think), as I’m pretty sure I’ve never had fish tacos before. To be completely honest, I was a little underwhelmed, but I would definitely try fish tacos again.
But it’s all good because I was able to grab some Ben & Jerry’s cookie dough ice cream on our way out. (One of my favorite flavors, although this was the first time I had it, and I haven’t had very many of their flavors. Like maybe two. So it’s not saying much. But still…I love cookie dough as a flavor in general, so I feel pretty safe saying that. )
My Uncle Jim took us on our walking tour a few days later, and we rode the ferry in, which was SO FUN!! (More on this trip in a different post) We went to one of my uncle’s family’s favorite places to eat in SF for lunch, and it was quite good! I would definitely eat there again. I don’t remember what it was called, but it was in the ferry building. I got garlic fries, a cheeseburger and lemonade because that’s what I felt like.
Of course, there were a lot of pigeons around, and I managed to sneak a picture. I swear they’re like dogs…they know when you’re taking a picture and will fly away. But if your camera’s put away they’ll come right up to you.
We saw this on a mural on our way out of the fortune cookie factory in Chinatown. Someone mentioned how it looked like someone carrying Oreos, and after that I had to take a picture of it.
(You’ll see more photos from our SF tours in my Scenery & Artsy Photos post that will be coming soon!!)
Kuma chilling outside on the outdoor couch in the sun, looking cute as usual.
We watched a couple outdoor movies while we were there, because they have the whole setup, plus, it’s still warm enough in October in California, you can do things like that, so why not? Admiral got to lay on the couch because no one else needed it, and he was in heaven. Like I said in the last post, he never gets to sit on the couch at home, so it was a special treat for him.
We also went paintballing with Auntie Lizzy, Bunny, Uncle Jim and my cousins Nathan & Jaden. It was SO. MUCH. FUN. Why do the fun things always have to be expensive?
We also had a couple on Nerf wars, which were also quite fun!
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Had the best time fighting my first Nerf war with some of our favorites yesterday. It was the Red Team against the rest (us sitting in front), and Abbie and I traded off as one the guns broke and wouldn't shoot without jamming. We won, but everyone also wanted to play a different style that we didn't have time for yesterday, so there may be a rematch today. 👍🏽 But before then, we're off to experience another first: paint-balling! 😉 #familyshenanigans #havingfun #weekendactivities ~Hannah~
My two kitty friends!! You still haven’t heard about them yet, but they are what made me realize that cats don’t suck. I like one of them better than the other (shh, don’t tell. She’s just super needy, and her meowing can get annoying. She also woke me up a few times in the night before, so that didn’t help her ranking at all. ), but I still like them both. Best cats ever!! I like getting a cat fix when I go down there.
Luke giving Auntie Lizzy her temporary tattoo! You have to be so still, which is not what Auntie Lizzy is best at, but she was fine! She actually got another one on her leg about a week later.
My Aunt Anna-Marie (Uncle Jim’s wife and Nathan & Jaden’s mom) is *really* good at baking (and cooking, too), and she made these two amazing looking and tasting cakes for Hannah’s birthday, because we were down there for her birthday. Here’s what I said on Instagram: “They were both good, but the chocolate one… it was the bomb.com. So. much. chocolate! Her cakes are legit pieces of art and it feels like it’s a shame to eat unless you know how delish it will be when you do. ”
Some random cute dog pics coming your way in 3…2…1…
Kuma giving me the “you have got to be kidding…” look.
But then she cooperated and started looking perky…or maybe someone dropped something in the kitchen.
Admiral and Hannah snuggling before bed one day. This happened a lot actually. At home he always snuggles with Hannah on her bed until she gets sleepy and boots him off into his bed on the floor, or, if I bring him up too late for that, he’ll sleep on my bed until I come to bed, and so we kept it up on vacation because otherwise he was a bit restless in the night. I had so many cute pictures of him & Hannah on the bed, it was hard to pick only one.
Kuma sleeping on her favorite chair, and looking super sweet/sad. This is the doggie version of #mood.
Auntie Lizzy is a great mixologist, but one night she also made these (soft, at least for me) milkshakes that were delicious! This one was chocolate coconut, but I also ended up having a second one that was just plain chocolate, which I think I liked better. I’m just a purist sometimes, especially when it comes to frozen treats.
We all went out for dinner close to the end of our trip. (I’m sorry, I don’t remember what the place we ended up going to was called, although I think it was an Italian restaurant.) We actually had reservations at one place, but when my uncle called to double check, he found out that the restaurant had closed that morning! Just up and closed. So we had to go somewhere else last minute. I had spaghetti carbonara (which was delicious), and learned how to eat spaghetti like an Italian from my uncle. Good times, man.
I honestly don’t remember what this was. Something chocolate, which was the important thing. I’m pretty sure it tasted fantastic as well.
On the day of Hannah’s birthday celebration party, we went on a hike with my aunt. It was the second hardest physical activity of the trip, second only to the STAIRS when climbing up the hill to Coit tower in San Francisco. Auntie Lizzy is a fast walker. Auntie Lizzy has taken this hike a number of times. Where we live if there’s a hill, you climb it, and then you’re at the top. Here at the top of a hill you’re just met with another, steeper hill to climb. So there was a whole bunch of us who are used to hill sprints, if you will, being led by a marathon hill climber. You get the picture…we were wiped by the time we were done, but it was 200% worth it; I’d do it regularly if I lived there. The view was I.N.C.R.E.D.I.B.L.E!! This was only halfway up!
There was this big hill that we could have just passed by, but I insisted that if we’d come this far, we had to go up it. Plus, it was a short hill, and it was higher than everything else, so it gave you a 360 of everything. The wind was blowing so hard up there, it almost felt like it could blow you away. You can see my hair being blown in the picture. (P.S. more pictures from this hill are coming in that other post.)
Wow, that’s abrupt! That’s all I have until we’re in the car on the way home! I thought this was classic “at the beginning of a car trip” vs “six hours into a car trip” Lol, I just checked, and in reality, they were only taken an hour apart. I guess it would be more severe if it was six hours. I just pulled that number out of the air.
Getting comfortable in the back… (don’t worry, I’m still buckled in!)
At one point it was sunny, but I was also trying to use my reading glasses, and I got really goofy and decided to put on both AND take selfies… We have classic derpy, my attempt at a posh librarian face, and a “idk why I’m doing this” face.
We stopped at a hotel halfway home, and had dinner at the Black Bear Diner, which was honestly SO GOOD. Hunger is the best sauce for sure, but it was just so. good. I had shrimp, coleslaw and fries, and Katie & I split a chocolate lava cake. Those fries, tho… *coma*
After that we went back to the hotel and went swimming. Then bed. Because of complicated sleeping arrangements Luke & I ended up sleeping on the floor. It was perfectly fine because I was so tired from all the late nights, plus the swimming, and I konked out completely. It was super sweet, though, because Admiral slept right next to me, and had his head resting on my impromptu bed while I was getting ready. (S/o to La Quinta for being pet-friendly! )
The next day we met old quizzing friends who live in Oregon for a pizza brunch, which was amazing! Love them to bits. (And it was good pizza. )
When we got home, we got Panera for dinner, and (after unloading the car and unpacking the essentials) watched a movie bundled up on the couch because we were so cold.
That’s it!!! Hope you enjoyed the vacation recap, and lots of cute dog pictures.