The boys and I are back home after an adventurous trip to San Francisco to visit the city where Dad has spent most of the year working. Most of the time we had a lot of fun, the rest of the time we were dealing with a very wiggly and hungry seven year-old and a moody twelve year-old who likes to exert his big brother power over his sibling.
We did all the typical tourist-y things, but this was the kids' first visit so we HAD to. The weather was gorgeous, although I am not a big fan of the dramatic temp change in the early evenings - I couldn't get the hang of the layering necessary to survive outside all day. The kids were great walkers, hardly any complaints and when they did complain, I had to admit my feet were tired too, so who could blame them? In the tradition of scouts, here's a list of my "Roses and Thorns" for the trip:
The garden tour of Alcatraz, We got to go into roped off areas where other visitors weren't allowed - very interesting history of the landscaping and the prisoners who tended the gardens
Evan's fascination with the lazy sea lions on Pier 39. I think we went back three times so he could visit them.
Muir Woods was Awesome! We all loved it, had a fantastic time learning about the redwoods. Steve's "junior ranger" badge should be in the mail soon. I just wish I could bring the smells from there home with me. Nothing in Wisconsin smells like that. My favorite memory here will be the Haiku Aaron wrote as part of the requirements for the Junior Ranger Badge. Aaron has always been good at writing poetry and was happy to take on the task. He sat down on a stump and wrote this in about 10 minutes...
Tall ancient creatures
Witnesses to birth and death
Kings of the forest
Lunch at Pier 23 where a waitress asked me if I was a writer. Apparently some customers there thought I was somebody famous (what?) I told her she could lie and tell them I was! (What I should have said was, "no, but I am a famous handbag designer" Why can't I be clever at the right moments?)
Parrot Perch - the parrots were cool but not as cool as the homes in the area. The most gorgeous views and unbelievable gardens/landscaping. It took my breath away. That is where I would live. Absolutely worth the climb.
The shark hat the boys won on the Embarcadero. It went with us almost everywhere.
Pat's Cafe - breakfast here, definitely. Off the wharf by a few blocks so it's not crazy-crowded and the food is superb. I thoroughly enjoyed the California Omelet. YUM!
Spending time with Steve, although most of the time we were too busy keeping track of the kids to enjoy each other's company...I vote for the next trip to be "Adults Only".
Um, definitely the trip home. The part where our plane had to make an emergency landing because there had possibly been a fire in the cargo hold, which was possibly put out by the extinguishing canister that is conveniently located in that area. The one that had exploded and set off warning lights in the cockpit. That was definitely NOT the highlight of my trip, especially considering that I have a pretty big (irrational, I know) fear of flying. I somehow managed to appear "kinda calm" to my kids but the 10 minutes it took us to get on the ground...I'm just saying I could have used a fresh pair of panties, if ya know what I mean. So, after another 2 hour wait and a new, unbroken plane, we were off again, and I'm not even kidding you - the cocktails were on the pilot!! Hooray!
I didn't take the fancy camera with us, too much trouble, but the little one didn't do a terrible job - see for yourself. Maybe you will be inspired to visit...