You can find the Travel Vlog of my Road Trip on YouTube!
July 11, 2019
Father/Daughter Mini Road Trip & Styled Photoshoot!
To hear about a day consisting of: father/daughter bonding, a brand new truck, burgers, waterfalls, and a styled photoshoot - keep on reading!
I wanted to attend a styled photoshoot hosted by https://www.donnallin.com/ over at Kennewick, Washington. Because it was about a 4-hour drive from my home, I decided that it might be too far for me to trek over alone (especially given the fact that I’ve never driven over to the Tri-Cities before). Upon hearing my dilemma, my dad encouraged me to attend the styled shoot and offered to keep me company for the trek over. In addition, he even let us take his brand new Diesel truck for its first road trip!
We woke up bright and early for the mini road trip to Kennewick. To say I was excited to drive my dad’s new Dodge Ram was an understatement. I was STOKED to drive his new truck, and even more excited for the day we had planned. Fueled up by a McDonald’s breakfast (I’m aware that this wasn’t the healthiest choice… I promise I’ll try harder to eat healthier… lol!), we drove through the Snoqualmie Pass to our first stop in Yakima, WA -- Miner’s Drive-In Restaurant for their famous burgers.
When I was still in high school, my dance team would stop at Miner’s for dinner when we would drive over to Yakima for our annual State Dance Competition. It was only fitting that my dad and I made a stop to enjoy the burgers that we haven’t had in over 5 years! They tasted as good as we remembered and once we were full, we made our way to another detour -- Palouse Falls State Park.
Palouse Falls was about an hour or so away from Kennewick, but since we had time to spare before the styled shoot scheduled for the evening, we figured we’d check it out. Palouse Falls has been a location I’ve heard about countless times, but never had the chance to make it to the part of Washington in which it was located in. The Palouse Falls stands at 200 feet tall, and we read that it was one of the last active waterfalls on the Ice Age floods path. We were blessed with sunny weather that day, so we were even able to witness a rainbow displayed beautifully in front of the falls!
Around dinner time, we made our way down to Kennewick (again, where the styled shoot took place). We discovered a small farmer’s market a couple blocks from the photoshoot location, so we decided to pick up some barbeque, mango shakes, and yellow cherries to snack on for dinner. When 7pm arrived, I made my way to Donna’s #TCxStyled Shoot-Out where I was able to meet about 10 or so creatives capturing art together. It was tons of fun and so worth the drive!
List of Vendors from the Styled Shoot:
Florals - @luxurybloomsfloraldesign
MUA - @mubymika
Hair - @connie.delamora
Calligraphy - @calligraphybyalena
Organizer - @donnailinphoto
Annnd that's a wrap!
ABSOLUTELY grateful to have a dad who supports my photography enough to accompany me on an 8-hour total road trip to Kennewick for a styled shoot. ALSO thankful that he trusts me enough to drive his brand new truck ;) lol!
Cheers to Papa Aguilar!
You can find the Travel Vlog of my Road Trip on YouTube!
July 3-July 8, 2019
4 Days + 3 National Parks + 3 States + 1 ENGAGEMENT PHOTOSHOOT = The Last Few Days with My Fiance Before He Deployed Overseas
To hear about an adventure consisting of: an engaged military couple, collecting stamps at 3 national parks, a last-minute engagement photoshoot on the 4th of July, driving across state lines, and orangutans -- keep on reading!
My fiance Lucas received a 4-day pass while he was down in El Paso, Texas before his deployment overseas. Because his deployment was sudden (feel free to read more about this story in my previous blog post here!), we decided that time was more valuable than money at this point so I booked my ticket to fly down to El Paso, Texas to spend his days off with him.
This was both of our first times near the El Paso, Texas area so we decided to maximize the experience by visiting all the nearby national parks. Who knows when we’ll be in the area next, right? We also wanted to use the extra days given back to us by organizing the engagement photoshoot we weren’t able to have before he left Washington. Due to an AMAZING photography community, I was able to find a photographer and a hair stylist available for our engagement shoot on the 4th of July!
All in all, we were excited to be able to go on another adventure, but more excited that we were able to get time back to spend with one another.
Lucas’ first day off was on July 3rd, so I flew that morning from Seattle Tacoma International Airport (SEA) to arrive in El Paso International Airport (ELP) by noon. Luck was on my side that morning! My baggage ticket wouldn’t print in the kiosk, but instead of waiting the long line to check-in my bag, the attendant directed me to wait in the first class line. Security was a breeze and when I arrived to my seat on the plane -- not only did I have my preferred window seat, but also had the whole row to myself!
About 3 hours of editing pictures later, I left the Seattle morning sprinkle and arrived in the afternoon dry heat of Texas. It was 90 degrees!
Lucas met me at baggage claim and we happily made our way over to pick up our rental car. We had a long drive ahead of us to Tucson, Arizona (the location of our photoshoot), so after a lunch stop at Chic-Fil-A, we made the trek through New Mexico to Arizona!
We arrived at our hotel in Tucson, Arizona after 4.5 hours filled with road trip singing and wedding planning. We were both exhausted from traveling, so instead of exploring Tucson that evening, we decided to grab dinner at the Red Lobster down the road. Lucas was craving seafood so we bought a crab dinner for him and some shrimp for myself. We also toasted over a sangria and rum/coke - you can guess who had which ;)
Day 2 consisted of our first full day in Tucson, Arizona. We decided to travel over to Tucson because the Saguaro National Park was nearby, and Mount Lemmon was the scenic location that our photographer, Kim, recommended to us for our engagement photoshoot. Our shoot wasn’t scheduled until sunset, so we decided to brace the Arizona heat and explore.
Saguaro National Park was located about 30 minutes from our hotel. So after grabbing a quick breakfast, we decided to make our way to Saguaro National Park to cross another national park off my list (If you didn’t know - I made it my goal earlier this year to visit every National Park in the United States!). The drive over was a very windy, up and down drive through a FOREST of cacti. Being from Washington, we're used to evergreen trees so it was definitely a different sight to see for us! Hills would go on for MILES and there would be so many saguaro cacti sprinkled all over the area.
It was a little over 100 degrees that day, so we didn’t have it in us to go on any hikes. We really just wanted to go to the visitor center and see the forests of cacti. But really, the cacti were present almost the entire drive to the visitor center so we got our cacti fix that day for sure. While we were in the gift shop hunting down a postcard for my collection, Lucas found a National Park book that was big enough to hold postcards. He reasoned with me that we might not find ourselves in Saguaro National Park again and thought we might as well invest in a book to keep my collection of postcards as well as start collecting the National Park stamps in the book too.
With my new National Park book in hand, freshly stamped and with postcard purchased, we ended our visit to Saguaro National Park and decided to make a detour over to Old Tucson. The heat had us both feeling tired, so we didn’t end up staying at Old Tucson for very long. We were thirsty so we purchased drinks for the road, and we saw a shawl on sale - couldn’t pass that up (lol!). On our way back to the hotel, we found an In N Out Burger and couldn’t pass that up either (we don’t have In N Out Burger in Washington!). We went through the drive-thru to enjoy our lunch back at the hotel, while we both got ready for our photoshoot that evening.
Truly thankful for the creatives who made themselves available (ON A HOLIDAY!) to accommodate Lucas’ and my engagement shoot before he deployed overseas. Makayla (@get_it_twisted_withmakayla) drove 1.5 hours from Phoenix, AZ to our hotel in order to curl/braid my hair, and Kim (@kimhartnettphoto) also drove with her husband about 1.5 hours to Mount Lemmon to take our pictures! The drive to Mount Lemmon had a beautiful view and I’m obsessed over our engagement pictures! We’ll happily use some of them for our Save the Date cards, so thank you to both creatives for making this day so special for us!
Walking around Saguaro National Park, Old Tucson, and Mount Lemmon wiped us out, so instead of watching the fireworks by the Convention Center, we decided to avoid all the crowds and traffic and spend our evening at BJ’s having some snacks and drinks. We didn’t regret that decision one bit!
We woke up bright and early for the drive back to Texas on Day 3. With Starbucks in hand, we made the 6-hour drive to National Park #2 of this adventure - Guadalupe Mountains National Park in Salt Flat, TX. We were thankful that our rental car had cruise control because we had loooooong stretches of flat highways ahead of us. As we drove through New Mexico to get to Texas, we stopped for gas and Subway, but wanted to limit our stops so we could make it to two National Parks that day.
The long stretch of driving paid off because not only were we able to collect the postcards, stickers, and stamps from Guadalupe Mountains National Park, but we also made it before the Visitor Center of Carlsbad Caverns National Park (in Carlsbad, New Mexico) closed for the day. If we had more time, we would’ve walked the trails of Guadalupe Mountains. However, we were limited on time before Carlsbad closed for the evening.
We were SO glad we made it too, because Carlsbad Caverns was SOMETHING ELSE entirely. It was INCREDIBLE seeing all the stalagmites, soda straws, and columns throughout the Big Room (all made of limestone!). We didn’t make it in time to do the hike to the Big Room, but luckily they were still allowing visitors to enter through the elevators. Lucas and I didn’t know what to expect when we got there, but once we went 75 stories underground, our jaws literally dropped!
If you ever get the chance to visit Carlsbad Caverns National Park, I highly recommend! Pictures and reading about it just doesn't cut it.
Day 3 was filled with the most adventures, so by the time we left Carlsbad Caverns we were ready for some food and sleep. We looked for restaurants that were highly recommended near our hotel and found, Mariscos El Buchón. We had seafood, ceviche, and oysters that evening, followed by watching movies and falling asleep by 8pm.
Day 4 was the last day Lucas had before he left to fly overseas for his deployment. He had to report back to base by 6pm that evening. We slept in a little more that morning and made the 3-hour drive back to El Paso, Texas. I wasn’t able to check-in to my hotel in El Paso until the afternoon, so we weren’t sure where to wander until then. Lucas discovered that there were orangutans at the El Paso Zoo, especially a baby one! So he knew that I’d be ALL about going to see the orangutans (They’re my FAVORITE animal!).
I think we stopped by the orangutan exhibit 5 different times while we were at the zoo (lol!). They were just so much fun to watch! We also saw elephants, a galapagos tortoise, lions (which was Lucas’ favorite exhibit), and much more.
Once we saw all the animals we wanted to see, we stopped by Dairy Queen for a quick bite and some ice cream before Lucas dropped me off at my hotel. Lucas wasn’t sure how many days he would get free, and it turned out that he only had 4 days before he had to fly overseas. My flight didn’t leave until two days after his, so I spent my Sunday and Monday morning at the hotel (which consisted of a LOT of wedding planning, editing pictures/videos, and binge-watching Harry Potter).
Annnd that's a wrap!
Super excited over the opportunity to cross off THREE more National Parks on my list AND that we were able to get our engagement pictures taken before Lucas left for his deployment! :)
It’s never easy saying “See you later,” especially since this time it will be for 9-10 months and he’ll be in hostile territory… but we were extremely grateful to have spent those 4 days together even if it was just for 4 days. It was better than none at all, and we know he’ll be home sooner than we think. I am SO proud of him, and can’t wait to marry him when he comes home! :)
Cheers to another adventure, and prayers for a safe deployment!
You can find the Travel Vlog of my Hiking Day Trip on YouTube!
June 24, 2019
PNW Hiking: Franklin Falls, WA
To hear about a day consisting of: PNW hiking, coniferous trees, easy conversations, a 70-foot waterfall, and FRESH air - keep on reading!
To celebrate my first Monday out of the office (indefinitely! If you haven’t read my previous blog post, I left my full-time day job in downtown Seattle!), I wanted to get some fresh air and be outdoors. Therefore, my best friend, Lauren (you’ll remember her from our road trip hiking adventure from AZ to UT!) and I decided to kick off the summer with a short and easy hike to Franklin Falls.
Franklin Falls is located in the Snoqualmie Region of Washington, so just about 1.5 hours from our homes. The hike totals at 2.0 miles round-trip with a 400 ft elevation gain. You’ll find the falls after a mile of hiking, nestled between the two viaducts of I-90. I would highly recommend this hike if you’re just starting out with hiking, want an easy/short hike with a spectacular view, or are hiking with kids!
The weather was fair when we decided to go on our hiking adventure to Franklin Falls. It had just recently rained a day or two before the day we hiked, so the forest floor was left a little damp. It made some of the trail and rocks a little slick here and there, but overall, it made for a cool and even-temperature hike. However, even if it was hot and sunny, the trees would’ve covered the trail for a large majority of the hike.
This was my first time hiking the trail in the summer. The last time I had hiked to the falls was in February 2017 with Lucas. Snow covered the entire trail, and the anticipated 2-mile hike turned into an 8-mile hike for us because the road to the parking lot was so covered in snow that they blocked off the roads. Hikers were parking along the street to access Franklin Falls, but we didn’t realize that until we were about 2-3 miles in (lol!) and were left wondering where the falls were. We decided to make the long trek to the falls anyways! We thought that since we made it that far already, we might as well keep on going!
If you ever get the opportunity to hike Franklin Falls in the summer OR the winter, I highly recommend this hike either way! The view is rewardingly STUNNING and because hikers frequent the trail regularly it’s pretty easy to navigate your way to the falls. You'll weave your way amongst the trees and before you know it, you'll find the rushing river and will feel the mist coming off of the beautiful Franklin Falls!
Annnd that's a wrap!
After our first hike of the season, Lauren and I went back to her place to create a list of hikes we wanted to try to do before the summer ends! Next up is Mt. Rainier National Park - so make sure to tune in to my future blog posts or YouTube channel to hear how the next adventures will go!
Cheers to living life OUTDOORS!
You can find the Lifestyle VLOG on YouTube!
Conversations Over Coffee: Military Deployment, Moving, Quitting my Job, and GETTING ENGAGED!
This blog entry is going to differ from my previous travel posts. I wanted to use this platform to not only share my travel adventures, but to also journal about important milestones in my life. My intention is to not only share some of my personal stories with my readers, but to also be able to reflect on these moments years later.
Therefore, I will be posting “Conversations Over Coffee” entries from time to time. They will be filled with life updates and lifestyle content to share with you all. You know – the type of conversations you have when you meet up with a friend for coffee to catch up on life. :)
You’ll find that the month of June for me was filled with making choices that were heavily impacted once we received Lucas’ deployment orders, and from there - it was an exciting whirlwind of events.
We had known about Lucas’ possible deployment overseas for a little over a year, but that’s the thing – “possible” was emphasized for a while. Lucas has served in the Army Reserves for six years and counting, and his unit had not needed to deploy until 2019. Even during the months of military preparation leading to their deployment date this year, there was still a possibility that they didn’t need to deploy.
Regardless, we needed to plan for the anticipation. In May, we decided that I would move back home in June to stay with my parents during the duration of his deployment. Although Sherbert is an excellent companion, I just thought that I’d need a little more support than he could give me in our Seattle home all by ourselves.
Moving Out of Seattle.
Deciding to move out of Seattle wasn’t the easiest choice to make, however. (Not even in the slightest.) Lucas and I had lived together in our apartment in West Seattle since last year, but I had also lived in Seattle for the past five years while I was going to school at the University of Washington.
Seattle was my home. With familiar spots like Pike Place Market, our local diner with the best eggs benedict, Alki Beach, and our favorite Sunday Farmer’s Market all within reach, I had enjoyed every minute of our Seattle chapter. We had many firsts in our first apartment together – including our first time building Ikea furniture (which was a story in itself! lol), our first time baking pizzas in our own kitchen, and it was also the first home of my very first kitten and our first fur child, Sherbert!
Additionally, our West Seattle home made for only a half-hour commute for both of us to get to our jobs. The bus system was so convenient for me to use everyday to get to work in downtown Seattle, and the free parking nearby made it easy for Lucas to get to and from work. If we were to commute from our previous homes in Puyallup, it would’ve made for an hour commute for Lucas, and a 2-2.5 hour commute for myself.
Because moving out of Seattle increased my commute significantly, it caused me to have to make some more life decisions…
I Left My Job.
Work is work. There’s always going to be aspects of a job that you utterly dread, but there are also aspects of a job that you’re graciously good at or thoroughly enjoy. I worked for the same company in downtown Seattle for 1 year before I decided that it was time to move on.
If the only thing I needed to take into account was the job itself or the account team I worked with directly, I would’ve made the commute work. But given all the changes to adjust to – Lucas’ deployment and moving back home in Puyallup, the longer commute just didn’t seem feasible for what the job was able to offer me.
I was and still am so grateful for the growth and learning opportunities that my previous company was able to provide. However, at this point in my life, I needed time. Time to adjust, time to pack and unpack, time to prepare for the deployment, time to ease my mental health, and time to create new goals. Money will always return, but time won’t.
Running Out of Time…
I decided to put in my two week’s notice while Lucas was away for military training in North Carolina. I had planned it so that once he returns from North Carolina, we would both have one entire month to spend together before he deployed in mid-July. We had made plans to go on a trip together, hiking, and spending time with family.
However, a week before Lucas were to return from North Carolina, we discovered that his deployment orders were switched. Instead of having one month back in Washington to prepare, he would only have four days before leaving for his deployment.
I don’t even know how to describe in words the utter dread and defeat I felt when we heard that news. Not only was 9-10 months going to be taken away from us, but it was going to be taken away even sooner than planned, and 1 month to prepare turned into 4 days.
You can imagine that fitting in a month-long of goodbyes in 4 days was nearly impossible, and to top it all off – it happened to be the weekend of Father’s Day and Graduations. Nevertheless, Lucas and I wanted to make the most out of his last weekend home.
After a delayed and rescheduled flight, I picked up Lucas from the airport on a Friday morning. I had to spend the day working remotely from home, but for dinner Lucas and I spent the late afternoon with his family at Olive Garden. Because we were stripped away from our planned trip in early July, Lucas booked us a hotel in downtown Seattle for Friday night. We wanted one more night together in our city that we had called home for the past year before he left for his deployment. Lucas surprised me and booked us a room at the Loews Hotel 1000 on 1st Ave with the original intention to walk to Pike Place Market for breakfast the next day.
Although we were still full from Olive Garden earlier, we had just enough of an appetite to munch on some fresh oysters, a cheese platter, a glass of Riesling for me, and a rum and coke for Lucas at the restaurant attached to the hotel, All Water Seafood & Oyster Bar.
We were walking back up to the hotel room when Lucas started talking a little more sentimental than usual. We were talking about the deployment and how we were going to make it through – that the time away from each other was going to suck, but that we’ll always know how to make it work. And before I could even blink, Lucas surprised me with the question, “Will you marry me?” and pulled out the most beautiful rose gold ring I had ever seen.
You know how some brides sort of see it coming? That wasn’t me lol. I’ve always felt sure with Lucas, and even since the beginning of our relationship we made it clear to one another that we didn’t date around just to date – that we were looking for long-term. But if you knew Lucas, he is not quite the “planner” type, so I was very happily surprised that he pulled it all off without me finding out.
Lucas later explained to me that our families already knew, and that he was planning on proposing during our trip in July. But because the sudden change in plans, he decided to buy my ring in North Carolina that way he could propose the day he returned. While I was working from home earlier that day, he snuck away outside to receive my father’s blessing and even had the ring approved by my best friend, Chelsey, a week prior.
I am still in awe, and I am still trying to process how blessed I am to have found such a wonderful person to spend the rest of my life with.
Annnd that's a wrap!
To say that last month was exciting would be SUCH an understatement. Although some may say that all the life changes (especially the deployment) can be stressful or overwhelming, the most important thing to remember is that regardless of all that life may throw at me, the one thing I know for sure is that I have the BEST partner to go through it all with me!
Now that I have time off from work, I’m excited to have the time to unpack and settle in back home, the time to dream new goals for myself (like going back to school, traveling, finding a new job, and investing in my photography), and now… time to PLAN A WEDDING too! :)
You can either “go through” or “GROW through” a deployment, and Lucas and I have decided to choose the latter. Although the sudden change of plans threw us off for a moment, it only means he’ll return sooner than planned. It also eases my heart knowing that the platoon he was switched to is one that I know will look out for him while he’s overseas.
Just have to remember to count the blessings, and not the problems!
Cheers to getting ENGAGED!
You can find the Travel Vlog of my Trip on YouTube!
May 25-27, 2019
Memorial Day Weekend: Exploring In and Around San Francisco, California
To hear about a weekend consisting of: golden gate bridge views, things not quite going to plan (lol!), quality time with family, oysters and wine, a rainy day in Yosemite National Park, home-cooked meals, and painted ladies - keep on reading!
For Memorial Day Weekend, Lucas and I decided to fly over to San Francisco, California to visit his cousin and my very good friend, Meghan! She lives a few hours away from San Francisco so we decided to make the trip an adventure for not only us but for her as well. Lucas has quite a bit of family in that part of California, so we decided to visit as many family members as we could, especially because this would be Lucas’ last opportunity to see them before he gets deployed overseas this year.
Lucas and I started our adventure off with the usual iced caramel macchiatos at the SeaTac Airport for our early morning flight to San Francisco International Airport (SFO). I tried my best to take a nap during the short flight over to SFO, but found myself looking out the window watching the aerial view of the west coast instead.
Once we arrived at SFO, we refueled our energy levels with another Starbucks drink while we waited for Meghan and her mom/Lucas’ aunt, Claudia to pick us up. Lucas then drove us to the Golden Gate Bridge for a sneak peek before heading over to Lucas’ uncle and aunt’s house (Uncle David and Aunt Jen) located near Napa, CA. The many construction cones mislead us, so we were unable to stop for pictures; however, we were able to drive onto the bridge, which I’ve never been able to do before!
While en route to Napa, we decided to grab some lunch. Because Lucas was craving Chinese food, we stopped at a Mandarin/Japanese restaurant for some fried rice, sweet and sour chicken, and sushi.
Once our stomachs were satisfied, we fought through California traffic to get to Napa. The endless vineyards along the sides of the road were so epic! Vineyards just kept covering the massive hills - definitely how I pictured Napa in my head prior.
We caught up with Lucas’ Uncle David, Aunt Jen, and their three kids at their house. When we were all ready to go, we made our way over to the Napa wineries for some wine tasting. Because of the traffic, we were a bit crunched for time so we agreed to only visit one winery and just enjoy our time there rather than hopping around. Unfortunately, it was to our disappointment that once we arrived to Castello di Amorosa, cars were being turned away because there was a sign indicating “Reservations Only for Today.” Being that it was Memorial Day weekend, we knew it was going to be a bit busier, but didn’t anticipate being turned away entirely.
At this point, it was about 5pm and most wineries have either already closed or were going to close at 6pm. We hurried over to the nearest winery that was still open, but were met with a menu a tad over our budget (by a lot... lol). Although things weren’t quite going as planned, we didn’t let the obstacles stop us from getting wine in Napa. ;) So after regrouping over at Uncle David’s, we decided to snack on some oysters and sip on some wine at Hog Island Oyster Co. Uncle David knew his wines, so we had him select a red and white for us to try over some oysters. Growing up, I avoided oysters at all costs (probably because as a kid they can be intimidatingly slimy), but I was feeling adventurous during this trip and discovered that I actually LOVE oysters now!
An evening that didn’t go according to plan ended up being a fun evening filled with wine and laughter regardless of the location! We were able to catch up, share jokes, and most importantly - create memories.
Can you guess how we started our morning off on Day 2? Yep, you guessed it! Starbucks ;) Once we were all happily caffeinated at around 5am, we made the 3.5 hour drive to Yosemite National Park. In addition to wanting to check off Yosemite off my National Park Bucketlist, it was also along the way to Lucas’ grandparents’ house where we were going to have dinner. We originally planned to meet up with a childhood friend of mine and her boyfriend, but due to the rainy weather we had to postpone our photo meet-up for another time.
Despite the rainy clouds interfering with the view of the beautiful mountains and rock formations, we made the trek over to Yosemite anyways to at least drive around since we had the time to spare. We were barely able to see El Capitan, some roads were closed, and it even snowed in certain areas of the park, but we were still able to admire some of the mountains and waterfalls that the park was known to showcase to its visitors. A little rain never hurt any Washingtonians, and I hope to travel back to Yosemite later this year anyways, so fingers crossed I’ll be able to see more soon!
After spending the morning exploring a rainy Yosemite, we made a quick stop for hot chocolate/coffee and drove over to the house of Lucas’ Oma and Opa (grandma and grandpa in German) for dinner. Lucas’ Uncle Gary also planned to join us, and rumor had it that German meatballs and mashed potatoes were on the menu!
The last time Lucas visited his grandparents’ house was 2 years ago when Lucas and I had our first trip (as a couple) to San Francisco back in 2017. So, it was really special that we were able to catch up and see his family while we were in the area again.
As promised, we had German meatballs, cucumber salad, mashed potatoes, and asparagus for dinner and we happily soaked up every bite. There’s just something about home-cooked meals! Lucas’ Oma also never lets us forget about dessert, so she made sure we each had a bag of lemon chocolate almonds to take home too!
After dinner we had another three-hour drive back to San Francisco where we had a hotel reserved for Lucas, Meghan, Aunt Claudia, and myself to stay in for the night. Meghan dropped us off at the hotel so we could reorganize our luggage, shower, and rest, while she went to go pick up her mom. We were so worn out from the day that we decided on ordering dumplings via UberEats while watching Harry Potter on TV, instead of going out and exploring the area. And I would say, we made the right decision haha!
Day 3 was sadly our last day in California so we wanted to start early to get the most out of our day. Once we were energized by our complimentary hotel breakfast, we made our way to Japan Town - San Francisco, CA so I could meet up with a friend for a photoshoot. Lucas, Meghan, and Aunt Claudia explored nearby coffee shops and food stands while I spent an hour or so taking some photos with my client. I will happily take any opportunity to capture some photos while traveling! (So if I’m ever going to be near your neck of the woods - let me know!!)
Since we weren’t able to stop and take photos at the Golden Gate Bridge on Day 1, we chose to drive back over and snap a few pictures. I remember hearing about the Painted Ladies, which are Victorian/Edwardian-style homes that were known to appear during the opening credits of the TV Show, Full House. Couldn’t miss another photo op, so we spent a few minutes at the park across the street as well.
We spent our last hours in San Francisco wandering around taking pictures, and finding a Yelp-approved Boba place (lol!) before making our way to the SFO airport. Lucas and I snacked on some burrito bowls until our afternoon flight back home to Seattle - where our fur child was waiting for us to return.
Annnd that's a wrap!
Although things may not go according to plan, it is so important to learn how to roll with the punches! As cliche as it is, life is truly what you make of it so I’m proud of our rigor in seeing the silver lining to every obstacle that tried to prevent us from having a good time. All in all, it was a fulfilling trip, and I cannot wait to come back later this year!
Cheers to resilience!