Mendocino Mendocino! First of all, we woke up and had THE MOST AMAZING breakfast at the Didgeridoo inn. They make amazing blueberry (and I think it was white chocolate in them) pancakes 🥞!!!! After our tummies were full, we started exploring. Right across the street from our Bed and Breakfast, was a small, cute, white, church and behind the church were wooden steps that led down to the beach. We took the path to the beach and there were the most GORGEOUS flowers everywhere. It was like a French garden. Then we carefully walked down the steps (every steps are taken nice and easy with little one’s tiny feet). The beach was so empty! I saw 1 person in the far distance! Otherwise it was just our family for a bit! Then a lady came down to sit and chill by herself. Then a couple of park rangers came by. Other than that, no one else. It was so calming. Mendocino has cliffs all around the ocean, with beaches here and there. It is a wonderful, peaceful place. Then we walked back to our car and went on a drive to check out the town. We fell in love with it so much, we started looking at homes to buy there. The one we really liked was way expensive… it was a fabulous historical landmark home near the downtown area. All the houses there are really pricy because everyone knows how awesome Mendocino is! Lol! During some of our explorings, we saw some SEA Lions swimming near some rocks in the ocean. Y’all the sea lions are my fav!!! I want to pet one so bad. I’m a weirdo I know! We drove around the whole town pretty much, it’s not very big and then we went back to the downtown area, to check out the farmers market and grab some lunch! There farmers market was tiny but had a little of all the basics! It was very cute! For lunch went to the GoodLife bakery. It had great reviews! It was really good and there were other kids dining there while we were. Someone even thought we were local! It was a compliment to look like Mendocinoans. We wanted to walk around and explore the downtown some more! Y’all they had some of the best souvenir shops I had seen on the trip in mendocino. They had fun boutiques and an adorable toy shop (village toy store). We could really see ourselves living there!!! We even stopped by the local real estate agency to check things out. We left our info for them to contact us! It was interesting because we kept seeing this group of hippies around. They even had some handmade jewelry they were selling on the sidewalk. They looked like for real gypsy style hippies!!! So I googled it! Apparently the hippies have been in Mendocino since the 70s. They have pot farms around the area! I wouldn’t have known if I hadn’t have googled it! We went back to the pizza place we had been to the night before, they served ice cream and we had promised to get some! It was yummy ice cream! They even had a mushroom flavor! It was made of some mushrooms that have a sweet taste, it was actually yummy!!! We had spotted an all socks shop next to Frankie’s pizza and ice cream. Cade is really into funky socks right now, so we had to go check it out! Cade and Arthur Thomas picked out their socks and then we were on our way! That night we went back out to explore the city and go to dinner! It was slightly drizzling and about 60 degrees outside, but they had outside heat lamps, so we decided to sit outside and dine. We met the cutest couple that always vacation in Mendocino, they had their dog with them, so we got to know them a little while we were waiting on our food! We had a great visit! Y’all it’s all about relationships and getting to know people, letting our lights shine in a world full of darkness. The food was Thai inspired with seafood! And they had a great wine menu. We decided that since we were in wine country that we needed to try some wine! So we ordered some organic Muscat (it tasted almost as sweet as a muscato) wine and it was smooth and delish! The food was good too! Then we headed back to the Bnb for some sleep, after an awesome day, full of food and exploring!
The babies and I went to the awesome playground, at the campground, to burn off some energy while daddy and Cade packed the van. That playground was so much fun for them! There were some older kids that asked Arthur Thomas what his tshirt said. He ran to me and asked me. I said, “Nirvana, they were an awesome band from the 90’s.” He ran back to the older kids and repeated what I had told him. One of the kids said, “I think my dad played with the band.” Lol! Kids will say cute things! Arthur Thomas had been loving hanging out with the other children. That morning, Kian had got into the cereal and spilled it all over the ground at the campsite and then helped himself to the marshmallows, because that’s all he really eats out of Lucky Charms! Lol! Then the littles and I went to the petting zoo that was at the KOA and went to check out the goats, chickens, and bunnies. There we saw an adorable site, A momma goat was snuggled up with her 2 babies! By the way, Kian was saying “GOAT” and it was the cutest thing! My baby is growing up!!! The kiddos loved petting them and just looking at them. I’m pretty sure Kian picked up a goat turd 💩 (I thought it was a rock or a food pellet) and tried to feed it to the goat. Goats will eat anything, except for their own turds I guess! 😷🤷🏼♀️ After Art and Cade had packed up the van, we loaded the troops and headed north to Mendocino. We had heard Mendocino was absolutely beautiful, and we were staying in a Bed and Breakfast, so we were stoked! To get to Mendocino, it’s super windy roads. But you get to go through wine country, so there are tons of cute vineyards to look at on the way. Then after you pass the vineyards, there’s an awesome Redwood Forrest to drive through! The trees were huge and beautiful!!! It was the first time we had really seen the Redwoods. When we got to Mendocino, the windows were down and we could immediately smell fresh air and FLOWERS!! The amazing fresh floral fragrance filled our nostrils and we just kept sniffing lol! We got to our B and B, the Didjeridoo Inn (https://www.facebook.com/Didjeridoo-Dreamtime-Inn-Meditation-Center-212918775420428/), and met the innkeepers, Vera and TJ, they were super sweet. Vera showed us our room. We unloaded and freshened up, then we went to explore the town and grab some dinner. The town was so cute, lots of locally owned restaurants and shops, and it’s overlooking the ocean. It could not be more beautiful. We walked to Frankie’s pizza 🍕 and it was so delish! We enjoyed our slices and cold drinks on the outdoor deck area. We met a really cool family with 3 little kids while we were out there. Apparently a lot of Northern Cali folk go to Mendocino to vacation. I would go all the time we lived near Mendocino. The town reminded me of Eureka Springs, but on the ocean, with the most amazing views and 60 degree weather! We then walked around the town a little more and then went back to the Bed and Breakfast. We had to rest up for all the exploring we were going to do the next day!!!
We woke up and drove about 40 min to get to San Francisco from Petaluma. The first thing that we wanted to see was the Golden Gate Bridge. There was so much foginess that day, that we couldn’t see the whole bridge. The fog was covering half of it. We left to go into the city, in hopes that the fog would burn off by the end of the day and that we could see the full bridge later. First stop was the Japanese Tea Garden. It was the oldest Japanese tea garden in the US. It was beautiful. A great place to relax and take pics. We stopped at their snack shop and had some snacks and teas. We sipped our jasmine tea and iced green tea while overlooking the gardens. It was really peaceful. We explored the gardens and took a ton of pics. Then we headed to Chinatown! My family is part Filipino and they love Asian food, as do I! My cousin, Jen, suggested an authentic Chinese restaurant called R & G Lounge. We went to check it out. It was super nice upstairs, which was at street level. Once in the restaurant, we walked down the steps to be seated. It was super authentic. We shared the avocado salmon egg rolls, a veggie fried rice, special beef, and garlic honey chicken with broccoli. It was all really good! After we finished, we headed to the Apple Store, which was HUGE!!! It was 3 stories tall, with clear steps that you could see through…. pretty crazy! Next we walked to the Vans store, because it’s our families favorite place to shop! Cade found some new classic black and white vans for school and Some shirts. Arthur Thomas got a pair of slip on Peanuts Vans. They have all the snoopy characters on them, they are So so cute. Then we walked back to our car. Everything is hilly in San Fran and it’s a big city so you park and walk everywhere that’s within a reasonable distance. On the way back to the car we stopped a couple of shops in Chinatown to have a look. Then we took the car to Japantown! Japantown has a mall called the Japan Center, everything in it is Japanese. The one thing that Cade really wanted to do on this trip, was to go to Chocolate Chair, a popular dessert shop that sells Dragon Balls. I’ll post a video for you to see! We hit up a cute fragrance gift shop in Japantown and bought some incense. Then we went to Chocolate Chair. I wasn’t that impressed with the Dragon Balls… they are slightly flavored like fruit but are the consitentcy of cheese puffs and they smoke when you bite into them. I got a salted caramel ice cream and a rose macaron to share with Arthur. Arthur Thomas got watermelon sorbet. And Cade got the 🐉 dragon balls. We took some videos of them and had our dessert, then we got in the car and drove to fishermans wharf. It was so so cute down there! Tons of shops and restaurants looking over the bay. It was wonderful and I was wishing we had hung out there more that day. We could see Alcatraz from the wharf. I would love to go there one day when the boys are older. We walked to pier 39, where we were told we could see sea lions. One of my goals on this trip was to see sea lions in the wild and so far, this would be the second time to see them. Y’all they are so cute and chubby! They bark so loudly. I just love them! They were all gathered towards the back of the pier 39. We got a great glimpse of them this time. We could see them more closely than we did at La Jolla. After I got my sea lion fix we went to a fabulous gift shop. I don’t know what the name of it was, but they had the best designs and best prices of any gift shop we had seen on the trip. We found some cute shirts and then went to Hard Rock cafe for a late dinner. My family loves Hard Rock. The food is always good and the music is always fun! I love to educate our kids on bands and music from all eras! Then we grabbed a Biscoff latte at Biscoff (who knew they had coffees) and hit the road to head back to Petaluma. The fog still covered the bridge, so I guess we will have to go back to see it someday! When we got back to the campground, I checked to make sure no one had taken all of our laundry that we had left out to dry all day! Everything was there still! What a great campground! Then we hit the sack for another sleep under the stars!
We packed up our car quick that morning, we had high hopes of driving into Coulterville and having an awesome breakfast, we had seen an organic breakfast bakery on the way to our campsite a few days before. We got to Coulterville and it was closed!!! NOoooo!!!! We found out that it was only open Thursday through Sunday. So we checked the next place that looked like it had breakfast and it was closed!!! So we looked around and there were just a few businesses open in this tiny town and even fewer people around. We spotted a coffee shop, so Arthur went to check it out. We decided to stop there and have some coffee and pastries. We were the only customers there when we got there. 1/2 of the place was a thrift shop, the other half was a coffee shop. We looked at their menu and ordered. The owner, was super sweet and offered to make my boys scrambled eggs and a fruit cup (even though they weren’t on the menu). We ordered our food and coffee. I got a Aztec Mocha, that I still can’t quit thinking about. It was chocolate with a cinnamon spice twist, so dang good. The shop began filling up with hungry customers! We started looking around and realized that the owners owned gold mines and they also were avid ghost hunters and had been on several tv shows/documentaries. We ended up having a great visit with the owner, Michelle. Michelle and her husband, Andy, had moved from LA to live a more chill life and they had just opened this little gem of a coffee shop! If you are ever in the Yosemite area, stop by the gold mining town of Coulterville and grab an Aztec Mocha from the Gold Country Bistro. You can find them on fb or google them! Then we loaded up and headed to Petaluma, where we would be staying at a Koa for 2 nights. But first we stopped at In n Out burger for lunch on the way to Petaluma! When we got to Petaluma, I was surprised that they had a little grocery store/ liquor store/ gift shop when you checked in. I had never stayed at a Koa, so I didn’t know what to expect. Arthur and Cade began setting up our camp area. I took the littles to play on the AMAZING play area right in front of our campsite! It was the best playground we had seen on this trip and tons of kids were playing. I thought it was interesting that most of the parents were drinking beer or had a glass a wine. I guess everyone was chillin! The kids played and played. Then I noticed a line forming near the playground. It was getting longer and longer. My hubby found out that it was for a free train that takes the kiddos around the campgrounds! We lined up and waited and waited. Kian would cry every time a train left without us….you know the sad sobby sweet broken hearted baby cry. Finally it was our turn to ride. Kian and I crammed into a car and Arthur Thomas got in the car in front of us. This “train”, made of large plastic looking barrels with holes cut into the top, had probably 15 cars and it was pulled by a golf cart. No parents were allowed on it but I asked if I could ride with Kian. There was no way I was sending my not-quite-2-year-old on a train by himself lol. I was secretly worried I might break the “train” because I’m so heavy right now. They took off and the driver whipped the “train” around the campgrounds. Y’all it was a thrill ride for a little kid! Lol! He whipped the cars so fast, I was afraid my cart might turn over… so I leaned the opposite direction when it felt unstable, to balance it out! It was fun! Then we went back to the playground. Tonight Cade cooked! He made tomato soup and grilled cheese over the fire! I was a proud momma, he cooked quite the delicious meal! He’s going to be a great cook, like his daddy! After dinner, I took all 4 loads of laundry to the laundry room and went to town with our masses of dirty clothes. It was $2.75 to wash a load!! Someone is making some good money on those washers. I was just stoked to be able to wash clothing and get it done all at once, because there were multiple washers and dryers. Then I got kicked out of the laundry room, because it closed at 10pm. So I hung a bunch of the wet or partially wet clothes on a line and draped them over our tent to dry. We all went to sleep because the next day was going to be a trip into San Francisco!!!!