darlings do you love to travel?

Traveling is like an adventure out of a story book. For our family, it is a way to re-connect, spend time giggling, getting lost, problem solving and loving on each other 24/7. Travel has always been a passion of mine and when I met my husband and we had the same love affair with travel I was smitten. We lived all over California our first four years of marriage and had both lived there before getting hitched. Our first year of marriage was in Mill Valley, just outside San Francisco over the Golden Gate Bridge. Our second year was in the lovely San Luis Obispo and so many beautiful memories remain there for us. We have visited a few times over the past 11 years after moving to Oregon, but this trip was extra special and here is why.

Last year was a big change moving from a much larger home to our bungalow. We did that for many reasons, one of them having more freedom to travel over the next couple of years. Our family has had a season of challenges and now to be able to venture out more has been incredible. Our son is now at an age where traveling is easier and our daughter is the perfect age to get some wonderful education through travel.

Our travel board for 2016 looks a little like this...

We have some travel goals! Of course, not all will be met, but why not dream big? We plan to travel as a family, as a couple and as individuals for the hubs and I. What!? Travel alone and not be a wife and mama!!?? Hold on...that sounds kind of nice.

Here is a little recap of the beginning of our recent road trip to California...

We started our road trip journey to Monterey and stayed at the Hyatt Regency Monterey Hotel and Spa. I would highly recommend it as it had an outdoor heated pool, fun outdoor games and yummy food options. It was a perfect retreat with kiddos and I was able to get a deal that was comparable to much cheaper hotels in the area. The kids especially loved the ping pong area.

The Monterey Bay Aquarium is filled with beauty and sea wonder. We especially enjoyed the tank with the 200 pound tuna and a variety of big sea life and sharks. If you get a chance, go when they are feeding them. Fantastic! The jellyfish never disappoint...

The Monterey Pier has amazing views of the ocean filled with eateries and shops. We spent the day at the aquarium and strolled around the pier for lunch and photo taking and great discussions with our kids.

Santa Cruz was a fun day stop and the Santa Cruz boardwalk was a highlight for the kids. It was the first time my daughter had ridden a roller coaster in her little life.  It was fun seeing through her eyes and hearing her screaming for joy as we went up and down, around and around.

We ventured around the boardwalk and then found the best acai bowls I have ever tasted at a cafe called Samba Rock. They currently do not have a website, but if you go to Santa Cruz, this place is a must! The downtown of Santa Cruz is quaint with shops and food and an all around pleasant feel.

After Santa Cruz we headed up north where we stayed in a town outside of San Francisco called Tiburon.  We had such a lovely time and it was a great experience for our kids. Stay tuned as I will share more about that part of our trip and the big city of San Francisco tomorrow!

Have a lovely day darlings!

xo jennifer