Life’s a Beach

Confession . . . I am not a beach girl . . .

I don’t like sand or salt water and the memories I have of beach days as a kid consist of being miserable because the sand ended up everywhere and in everything!

So when our son James asked if we could go to the beach I honestly wasn’t that excited. But since we were in California and only 30 minutes from the beach we headed out this past weekend to spend the day at Crystal Cove State Park – Los Trancos Beach in Newport California.

Y’all, it was the BEST day! The sun was hot, the water was cold, the sand was soft, and the laughs were many!

We had so much fun playing in the sand, running into the ocean, chasing mole crabs, and hunting for sea glass. The cute vintage beach cottages, funky seaside store, and popular cafe all added to the nostalgia. The location was easy to get to and there was plenty of parking. Once we parked was a 5-10 minute walk down a paved path to the beach or there is a shuttle you can take for a small fee. There are multiple public restrooms both at the beach and near the parking lot where there is also a outdoor shower area.

“Dance with the waves, move with the sea. Let the rhythm of the water set your soul free”. ~ Christy Ann Martin

Crystal Cove State Park – Los Trancos Beach

Geocaching in Cali

What in the world is Geocaching? Its basically a treasure hunt using GPS coordinates and clues given by the owner and other cachers to find the geocache. It makes every walk in the park an adventure because you never really know what your going to find. We have found big geocaches, small geocaches, trackables, sweepstakes, and more. There is so much excitement to be had in the hunt and joy in the find.

My husband and I have been geocaching for years and have found caches all over the country (you can find them all over the world!). We love reading through the logs in the caches to see how many people have found it and where they are from. Our son loves to find a cache with small trinkets in it and we often bring something with us to swap out.

We use the this Geocache App and you can visit Geocaching.com for more information on getting started.

On this particular treasure hunt we were out at a park close to our hotel in Cali. It was about a 2 mile loop around the park with some killer stairs that led to an amazing view. It took us a while to actually find the cache but it was a fun hunt!

And yep, that’s me with my dog in a backpack. To explain why, you’ll need to know that Teddy is 14 and has arthritis in his hips and knees so when we head out on a hike he goes with in style (for him, not us … clearly dog wearing is not stylish).

Short hike in the park and fun geocache find!

Roadtrippin to California

A few weeks ago we were presented with an opportunity to travel with my husband to California where he is currently working. With no strings keeping us in Texas for the next couple of weeks we jumped on it and in less than a week we were on our way.

We headed west via I-10 with the goal of making it from outside of San Antonio, TX to Flagstaff, AZ on the first day. In hindsight it was quite ambitious to think we could easily make it more than 1000 miles in a day. Did I mention we were traveling with our son and two dogs? We did it and with a few stops along the way it only took us about 20 hours! (hint of sarcasm here).

White Sands National Park
The first stop on our road trip was the White Sands National Park in New Mexico. About twelve years ago my husband was stationed nearby so we spent some time reminiscing about old times and showing our son around. Although it was HOT, we were able to do a little exploring and get in some sand sledding.

White Sands National Park

McGinn’s Pistachio Tree Ranch
No trip through New Mexico is complete without a stop at McGinn’s Pistachio Tree Ranch! They have the best pistachios, jellies, snacks, candy, wine, and more. Our favorite flavor is Lemon Lime and it pairs well with cold beer! We didn’t make it to their big store Pistachio Land this time but if you get a chance their main location has the world’s largest pistachio and daily tours of the ranch.

Pistachio Land