Saturday, January 09, 2010

Happy New Year 2010

Since we had a pretty quiet Christmas, we decided to do something for New Years. We settled on San Francisco which is about a 5 hour drive from our house. I took a leap of faith and booked a cheap hotel through Travelocity. It turned out to be fine. It wasn't a great hotel, but it was clean, had an updated bathroom and was in the Marina district centered between the Golden Gate Bridge and Fisherman's Wharf.

These pictures are out of order, but here are a few things that we did.

On the way home, we stopped at the Jelly Belly factory in Fairfield, CA which is just west of Sacramento on I-80. If you ever get the chance to go do it. Your kids will love it. The tour is free and they give you a bag of Jelly Belly's at the end. Also they have a sample bar where you can try every variety they have if you want. They have a new thing called "Bean Boozled" where they made a bad bean that looks just like a good bean. On the tour Brian volunteered to each a bean that looks like the buttered popcorn, but is actually moldy cheese. Yuck! Parker ate the skunk one, which looks like the one for black licorice. You can also buy a bag of "Belly Flops" for cheap! Belly Flops are beans that don't form right or stick together or just to measure up. And yes, Eli is sticking out his tongue. :o(
This is the crookedest street in America. Parker and I took this picture from the top of COIT Tower which is on Telegraph Hill. My grandma Jo suggested we go up in COIT tower to see the view. It was amazing. The building is round so you can get a 360 degree view of the bay, city, bridge, etc. It was really cool. When we came down, Brian drove us over to the crooked street and we got in line to drive down it. It was unbelievable how many people were taking pictures, driving and walking up and down it. I felt bad for the people that live there.
A co worker told be about the Exploratorium. It is like the imagination stations at OMSI in Portland, only BIGGER!! We were there for 3.5 hours there was so much to do and experience. This toilet drinking fountain was in the sight area. It was one of those things where you know the water is clean, but can you really drink it. OK, Brian and I both did.
This is the kids and I walking onto the Golden Gate Bridge. It's free to bike or walk across. We only went to the first tower and then came back. Hannah was complaining the whole way, but the boys loved it. Parker had to spit off the side to see how long it would take before the spit hit the water; 10 seconds by his count for those who want to know. For me this was the best thing we did.
We also went down and walked on the Wharf and went to Pier 39, but forget to take the camera. The sea lions were gone so we missed that part. We did eat at one of the food vendors. I had the clam chowder in a bread bowl. Yum. Brian had some kind of fish, Hannah had deep fried prawns, Parker had a shrimp salad sandwich and as Eli would say . . . "wait for it ...", Eli had Burger King.
All in all we had a great trip. I can't wait to go back without the kids so I can tour Alcatraz. I love to go and see historical things, but the rest of my family doesn't. :)
Anyway, we wish all of your a happy and prosperous 2010.