On The road with Mommy Spice
Some of you guessed our destination and some of you were pretty close. The official answer is that we went to Monterey to visit the Monterey Bay Aquarium. Big round of applause to all of you travel-savvy people!
We left here Monday morning and reached Capitola by lunch. Capitola is a cute, little beach town just south of Santa Cruz. We ate Pizza My Heart for lunch and I tried to teach the kids their answer to "What kind of pizza do you like?" "Cheese pizza with thin crust, please."
After lunch we hit the beach for a couple of hours of wave splashing and playing in the sand. It was a nice time. Then the kids got chocolate ice cream cones for a treat and I had a mango smoothie. While we were in the ice cream shop, a teenage girl dropped her scoop of mint chocolate chip on the floor and another, random pre-teen boy picked it up, asked for a bowl, and ate it. Eeew! I'm not cringing about the dirt, but that floor was covered in sand. I can't imagine crunching my way through a bowl of sandy ice cream. That boy was one brave and hungry soul.
Back on Highway 1 for another 20 or so miles until we hit Seaside, a town just north of Monterey and one that contains cheaper hotels. And by cheaper I don't actually mean inexpensive. That whole area is a much-desired destination and even a weekday night at the Holiday Inn is over $100. I'm writing about the cost of our hotel so that when I re-read this entry in thirty years when this Holiday Inn costs over $1000 (a trillion billion!) a night I can have a good chuckle.
I think it was during our dinner at Chili's when I realized that I had had enough with the constant disciplining that is hanging out with small kids. When we got back to our hotel room I made them watch the news and Victoria Beckham: Coming to America while I ignored the fact that they were jumping on the bed and were this--><--close to busting open their heads on the nightstand.
[Off topic Spice Girl dish: The best part about Beckham's show was when she met up with celebrity blogger Perez Hilton. That lucky dog! (Beckham, not Perez) Other than that tidbit, the show just wasn't...what's the word... spicy enough for me. I don't want lots of drama in my life, but I sure as hell want to see lots of drama in other people's lives. As far as I can tell, Victoria Beckham seems to be a nice person who does ordinary things, even if her definition of ordinary includes always having an entourage of personal assistants, hairdressers, and makeup artists around her and taking a cavalcade of black Cadillac Escalades every time she leaves the house, which is also known as the compound. *Yawn* I can tell that the Beckhams just ain't the Barkers. Oh well.]
On Tuesday morning we were up early and had breakfast at McDonald's before heading down to Monterey and the Monterey Bay Aquarium. The aquarium was awesome, but the kids didn't last in there as long as I thought they would. After a quick lunch and a couple of Thomas tantrums, we left after two and a half hours. On the way back to the car we stopped in the children's museum My Museum--conveniently located alongside our parking garage--and spent some time playing with wet sand (Emily), building a giant bubble cocoon (Thomas), and taking pictures (me). After I had enough of kid-centric activities, I got the kids back to the car on the promise of juice boxes and took off to explore the California Coast on the 17-mile drive.
For some reason, I hadn't realized that the 17-mile drive was a tourist attraction that costs money. I paid $9.00 to check out some beautiful houses, extravagant golf courses, and the famous Lone Cypress Tree. I have now officially "been there, done that." Although I might do it again for a visiting tourist.
At the end of our two-day Tour de Capitola, Seaside, and Monterey, I met Mike at my group therapy appoint and traded cars. He got the car with the kids. Woo hoo! Hey, even Mommy Spice needs a break from the touring every once in awhile.
Pictures are on Flickr.
This just in -- Strollerderby thinks I deserve an award, too!
Aw, shucks. Thanks, peeps.