I spent a good portion on January on the road up in Northern California. It was a wonderful trip! I set off to San Francisco/Burlingame first. The drive up the 101 was so beautiful. I have always loved long road trips, my body doesn’t really like sitting that long but I love looking at the passing scenery. And its a good time to reflect with your thoughts, or sing along loudly to show tunes.

The hills were so green and beautiful! I passed many fields of those Happy California Cows, and even a bunch of horses playing and running down a rocky hillside.

As I got closer to the Bay Area things got cloudy and a bit stormy. There were little pockets of sunshine that provides some beautiful rainbows over the hills. I wish I had been able to get a picture of the rainbows they were so beautiful.

My time in San Francisco with filled with many ups and downs. While I had a wonderful time staying with dear friends and hanging out with many others the trade show I had gone up for didn’t turn out the way I had wanted. The whole point of this trip was to attend the National Association of Specialty Food Trade (NAFST) Fancy Food Show. I was lucky enough to take two days worth of classes on starting your own specialty food business. The hope was to leave the trade show with all the inside information I would need to start our own business selling my Great-Grandma’s BBQ sauce. Well I got the information… too much information actually.  After everything I learned at the show we have decided that starting this business is just not a smart idea right now. We aren’t financially ready to take on such a commitment, and we would need to re-vamp the sauce. The whole thing was a bit depressing. But I am very glad we spent the money to find out at the trade show that the business wasn’t for us, instead of wasting a LOT more money trying to get it off the ground. A time may come someday where we are able/willing to try again but for now we are moving on. What am I moving on to… who knows!

While in San Francisco I went to the most amazing yarn store Imagiknits. Feeling a bit bummed out by the trade show I indulged in some lovely retail/yarn therapy and bought some lovely wool that I then turned into these amazing fingerless gloves.

For you knitters out there – they are the Evangeline Fingerless gloves made with some yummy Malabrigo worsted weight. Yummy, yummy gloves! I am in love with them!

While in SF I was lucky enough to go to the Disney Family Museum. Oh my goodness! It was amazing! The museum is beautiful and so well done. It was so inspiring to see the Disney story solely through the eyes of the Disney family. Nothing felt corporate or like they were trying to sell you anything, it was just the story of a man. I highly recommend it to anyone who is a fan of Disney. I plan on going back!

I eventually left San Francisco and my wonderful friends and headed over to my hometown of Modesto. Instead of taking the direct route back home I did something I had never done before! I drove over the Golden Gate bridge!! For as many times that I have been to SF in my life I had never gone over the bridge, heck I had never even gotten close to it. I had only seen it from afar. It was breathtaking, I am so happy I took the extra time to make the small trip, and I can now cross it off my list of things to do.

My time in Modesto was spent with my brother and his family. I don’t get to see them as often as I would like so it was great to have some good quality time with them and my niece & nephew.  The kids were a crack up, especially my nieces. 2 1/2 is such a fun age. It took awhile for her to learn my name, but I am now Tantie BaBa, which makes me very happy.

I got to see some wonderful friends while in town as well. Seeing them always lifts my spirits. I love the type of friends that you don’t need to talk to everyday, you can go months without talking, but as soon as you get together it is like no time has passed at all. It was scary to realize how long I have known some of these friends though… makes me feel old for a moment but then I just think how happy I am to have had them in my life for so long.

My Mom eventually joined me in Modesto and we spent more time with family handing out Christmas presents to the kids. My nephew got a Nerf gun which he appropriately used to attack his step-dad/my brother – VERY fun to watch! My Mom and I gave my niece a huge box of dress up clothes, there were hats, masks, capes, and wonderful tutu. She LOVED it!  It was so funny to see the outfits she would come up with… oh the mind of a toddler.

Eventually we had to leave the family, which was hard, but instead of heading straight home we decided to take a detour to Yosemite. Growing up we went to Yosemite  fairly regularly since it was only 2-3 hours away, but I haven’t been back in over 10 years. I love LA but I missed the pine trees, the mountains, and mostly the river.

The trip there was amazing. It was sunny out but there was still tons of snow on the ground which was so wonderful, it looked like a fairy land.

 

We did the hike to the lower Yosemite falls. Normally this is an easy walk, but everything was covered with a thick layer of snow and ice that was starting to melt so it was extremely slippery. The scariest were the foot bridges completely covered in ice. But, thankfully, we made it without falling! The falls were beautiful it was worth the treacherous walk.

On our walk back to the car we were blessed to see some deer in the forest munching on grass. We had hoped to see a bear but were very happy with the deer!

Yosemite is one of the most beautiful places I have ever been, I am always so at peace there and in awe of the nature around me. While I enjoyed many parts of my trip to Northern CA Yosemite really was the best part, the icing on the cake.  It reminded me of my love of nature, how much I love the smell of the forest and walking beautiful trails. Now that I am back in LA I am working on getting out in nature more, hitting the trails in the Hollywood hills or at the base of the San Gabriel mountains (did you know there are waterfalls over there!?!?!). I didn’t realize how much I was missing nature until I was in it again.

 

Here are some more pictures from Yosemite. If you have never been you really should find the time to make it up there, it is an amazing place.

 

 

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