Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Life Off the Vine

Posted by Beck

JP has been so immersed in pruning that we have spent very little quality time together as a family. We decided a change of scenery was in order and headed out of town last Monday. I had decided to turn the President's day holiday into a four-day weekend, and since JP worked on Saturday he had Tuesday off, so we decided to take advantage of weekday rates and make an overnight visit to Monterey.

We made the requisite stop at Casa de Fruta along the way. (Casa de Fruta is a very popular stop near the junction of Highways 152 and 156. They sell dried fruit and nuts in the main shop and also feature a wine shop, a deli and a candy store. They have a playground, a carousel, old farm equipment and a train. It's great for families!) Funny, as many times as JP and I made the trip to Monterey in our 10 years of dating/marriage before LJ, we never once stopped at Casa de Fruta. We always talked about it, but never committed. Post-baby, we now make the stop almost every single time. This time we rode the train. LJ was in heaven!


We made it to the coast just in time to hit the tail end of the holiday crowds.

After shrimp salads at the Fish Hopper and some sand play we headed to our ocean front hotel. Almost immediately JP got sick. We don't know if it was food poisoning or a touch of the flu, but either way he was down for the count the rest of the afternoon and evening.


LJ and I headed down to the beach by the hotel and played for awhile. LJ was pretty firm on not going near the "ah-sho," (ocean) but he did enjoy the sand. After that he and I headed over to the mall for a Pizza My Heart date. By  the time we got back to our room JP was feeling much better and we hunkered down to enjoy the big screen TV and crappy cable shows we don't get at home. (Big Foot Hunters, anyone?)



After a sporadic night's sleep sharing a bed with LJ (who ended up on the floor three times), we had a delightful breakfast overlooking the ocean and headed to the Monterey Bay Aquarium. My Aunt gave us a membership last year, so we have tried to enjoy the luxury of free passes as much as possible!





Every time we would talk about seeing sharks, LJ's eyes would get really big, his whole body would shake and he would suck in his breath several times. It was all very dramatic, so I'm not sure if he was really frightened by the idea or if the whole act was just for show. Regardless, he wore his shark shirt for the occasion and seemed to handle all sightings without issue.




The sunfish is my favorite. He's just so weird looking!




It was a beautiful day by the "ah-sho." We ended our trip with another oceanfront meal; lunch at El Torito. We hopped in the car to head home and didn't even make it to the freeway before LJ was sound asleep in the backseat. We wore the little guy out.


It was a much-needed, restful family getaway. I'm so glad we were able to do it!



Now it's back to cleaning up the vineyard and taking care of things on the homefront!