Nearcation: San Francisco edition, because this is totally going to be a thing now. My God-sister and her hubs surprised us with a hotel gift card to spend a night on the town. We packed a backpack, jumped on BART, and played local tourist for 24 hours. We stayed at the Sir Francis Drake near Union Square where you are welcomed by a red-suited doorman and a swanky lobby bar. We were given a room with a view… We hardly come out to this area of San Francisco so we kept our adventures to any place we could get to by foot or by cable car. We had an afternoon meal at a hole in the wall Filipino street food restaurant. Then to a free craft event at Madewell with Jenny Lemons where we ran into my crafty friend Tally Sue. En route back to the hotel, we picked up boba from Boba Guys (insert Instagram worthy photo below) and veggie pizza from Uncle Vito’s. TV and chill, y’all. The next day we woke up …
On a recent trip home we visited the Fo Guang Shan Hsi Lai Temple in Hacienda Heights. The architecture and details in design made it feel like we went on a day trip to China. The temple has been around since 1988, but I only recently learned about it from my Mom who also recently learned about it from a friend. The temple is place of worship but also a place of calm and rejuvenation. It caters to visitors – All the statues and buildings had information cards, and there were many lists with proper temple behavior to follow, e.g. No pictures are allowed inside the temples. There are gardens, classrooms, and a cafeteria that serves vegetarian cuisine. I enjoyed exploring the grounds and tossing coins into the garden for prosperity. After our visit, my Mom shared some photos with friends. They thought we were on vacation, too. Where do you day trip? Share below.
Hubby hadn’t ever been to Solvang so we took a detour on the way back home from Santa Barbara. It was burning hot the day we visited and our NorCal-acclimated skins were crying (I hear this stuff is called sweat 😉 ) so we only stayed for a short while. We explored the Main Street and side alley ways. Of course I found the bead store, a vintage gift shop, and a DIY studio and market place. I also found Santa Barbara cold brew coffee, an iconic Solvang photo opp for Hubs, and a windmill. I’d say it was a successful quick trip! Solvang much? Share your favorite Danish village finds below!
Lucky me, there’s an Arts and Crafts show every Sunday in Santa Barbara! It’s half art and half craft and all fun. Plus, it was a gorgeous day for a walk down Cabrillo Boulevard. The market is easily walkable, and depending how intrigued you are in the goods for sale, you can probably stroll the whole street in an hour or so. There were paintings, photographic works, … …glass art, wood pieces, … …jewelry and other wearables… Some of my favorite finds included these mini kaleidoscope necklaces. The kaleidoscope charms are functional; I’d never seen kaleidoscopes so tiny until I saw these. My niece scored a turtle necklace (currently her favorite creature). And my nephew got a yo-yo lesson from this fascinating yo-yo guy. Until next time Santa Barbara! Santa Barbara much? Share you favorite SB spots below!
More minimoon adventures in Tahoe! There was so much to see, and even though we had vacationed here before, we still discovered new sites on this trip. On our last day, we wanted to check out Fallen Leaf Lake. We drove through miles of forest, but couldn’t find the public park/beach area. The lake was surrounded with homes and lots of “Private Parking” signs. We found out later that you have to park somewhat far and walk over. Perhaps we can try this on our next visit. In any case, we got to enjoy the view of Fallen Leaf Lake from the car. 😉 And because we kept on driving, we stumbled upon Glen Alpine Falls which was even more exciting! Again, springtime means snowmelt which means waterfalls! Glen Alpine is big, loud, and gorgeous! The homes nearby must have some great soundproofing. There were beautiful rocks and trees, too. It was a great place to just sit and enjoy the view. Have you stumbled upon a great view lately? Share your discoveries below!
Whilst in Seattle we intended to go whale watching, but the whales never came out to play! Despite this huge disappointment, the rest of our “bird watching” experience was unlike any other we’ve experienced. We woke up bright and early to catch a seaplane at Lake Union. There were eight of us on board including the pilot. It was basically a private plane. And the folks at Kenmore Air are most darling. The views from above were amazing. Look at all those trees! We landed at Friday Harbor and wandered the town a little before boarding our tour boat. It’s quiet, has cute shops and eateries, and the air is so refreshing. It seems like a lovely place to spend a weekend away. Aboard the ship our naturalist taught us everything we wanted to know about the animals we saw, why the water moved the way it did, and so much more. We saw a stellar sea lion (the biggest of sea lions!), deer, and a bald eagle. A bald eagle! They are so majestic. I love being on …
And when I vacation, I like to be touristy like a local! Check out all these local finds I explored in Seattle. My God-sister and her hubby took us to Kerry Park. It’s perfect for panoramic views of the city and sunset if it’s clear enough. They brought us to Lake Union to check out the boat houses… And they took us to the Best of the Northwest Art & Fine Craft Show. You can bet I visited all the crafty shops I could throughout our trip, too. We stumbled upon Dry Goods Design on a rainy evening walk through Pioneer Square. Twas the cutest fabric shop. And I visited not one, but two letterpress studios. That’s just how I roll. Paper Hammer Press (above) and Pike St. Press (below). I wanted all the things. I loved exploring the best of the northwest. A big shout out to my God-sister and her hubby for driving us around town, showing us where the cool kids hang and for teaching us not to carry an umbrella around (so touristy!).