Friday, September 7, 2012

California Trip - Day 4: Marin County

The Napa Valley portion of our trip was just incredible. We had a great time, saw a lot of beautiful scenery, and tasted a total of 49 wines in about 2 1/3 days! As we were leaving Napa, we both agreed that even if our vacation ended right then and there, we'd always remember it as a totally awesome vacation. BUT - we still had the San Francisco part of our trip left! 

During the San Francisco portion of our California trip, we stayed with Jeff's cousin, Rebecca. Rebecca and her husband, Rick, are both doctors, and they have three great kids. We had such a great time staying with them! Our first day there was a Monday, so Rick and Rebecca had to work, but we took the kids with us to explore Marin County for the day!

Our first stop was Muir Woods National Monument (aka the land of lots of big, giant redwood trees).

Muir Woods is such a beautiful place... SO. MANY. BIG. TREES. Also streams and stuff. Just a lot of beautiful nature! 

Here we are standing in a big tree!

And here we are with all the kids! 

We found a big hollow log to take pictures in...

We spent the entire morning walking through the park and taking pictures. 

Eventually we found a fun spot where the sunlight beamed through the trees in such a pointed way that it made your head light up if you stood under it and took a photo. We had entirely too much fun with this. :) 

Check out this awesome tree: 

Jacob had fun playing Tarzan on the trees...

We wandered around the forest for hours, and we found lots of pretty sights!

Eventually we all got hungry, and we ate a late picnic lunch right outside the park (no food allowed in). Then we were off to our next destination, the Marin Headlands! First we drove by Muir Beach (which was very, very foggy):

Then we got a little lost and drove through the pretty, pretty hills until we figured out where we were going. 

Beautiful, right? 

So pretty! 

Eventually we made it to the overlook we were trying to find, an old military lookout spot that is now a nice little scenic overlook. 

Soldiers used to camp out in these concrete bunker things and watch the Pacific Ocean for signs of invasion. 

Check out the pretty Pacific Ocean views from this spot - 

The kids had been here before, so they showed us all the cool spots to see. 


Okay, I'm sorry this is a bajillion photos, but I just thought it was so pretty there! 

We even went into this little hidden underground room! Wonder what the military used it for back in the day! 

After we ran around the overlook for a bit, we went to the Marine Mammal Center, where they rehabilitate seals and sea lions and stuff. We got to see some real animals being treated, but Jacob liked the statue ones at the front the best! 

After the Marine Mammal Center, we set off on a hunt to get a good photo of the Golden Gate bridge. it was a super-foggy day, but we tried to find some pretty spots! 

Our search for a good bridge photo took us to another former military site. This one used to be a battery, and it was pretty big. 

It was super windy and cold, but we decided it would be worth it if we could get a good picture. 

Poor Amelia was totally freezing, and Jacob was actually legitimately worried that he was going to blow away. Haha! 

After all the running through the cold and wind, this was the best photo we could get: 

Totally awful. Haha. 

But we did get to walk around the battery, and it was pretty interesting! 

By this point, we were all cold and it had been a long day (and for us girls, our hair was seriously messed up by the wind), so we headed back home. We stopped at Peet's Coffee for some hot chocolate to warm us up. When we got home we had a lovely dinner with Rick and Rebecca and the kids (and I got to make squash blossoms!). 

Next up - we head into San Francisco! 

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