California dreaming (coming true) day 1

The idea of even getting to go to CA was a dream. Then, throw in going to CA with Tot and Doug…and Coronado Island!? A pipe dream! But it came true. Thanks to Doug. He made it all possible with all of his planning, supplies, easy attitude and can-do spirit. Plus his love. This trip would have been a sheer disaster or more of a constant challenge had I attempted to do this as a lone wolf. Glad I was not that single wolfy lady.

What made it even more special was the fact that as a child, I never got to do stuff like this with my mom. We had no way to do it! That would now change with my Tatum.

OK, so we left on a Monday morning (Labor Day). Now, this was strategic thinking because we knew all would be returning home instead of arriving on Labor Day. The car ride promised to be a joy because Doug and I vowed to give Tot a new Paw Patrol character every 100 miles. Beautiful. She picked out of a grab bag each one; one by one. Rocky, Chase, Zuma, Skye, Everest, Rubble, Marshall, and of course Ryder. IMG_4065 IMG_4064 IMG_4063

Doug was a skilled driver too. Much better than I could have done! Alert, fun, and focused! IMG_4066

Our stop in El Centro was a highlight of the journey. The young man who served us at Subway commented that we were such a happy family and what a rarity that was. He was very kind and generous with portions too!

When we arrived in San Diego, I could smell the water. Then I spotted it: UnknownThat gorgeous bridge to Coronado. Heaven, we have arrived. We drove up to our hotel, the El Cordova, and we chose the room with 2 bedrooms/2 baths. Very cozy and BIG!

The Mexican restaurant which surrounded our hotel wafted a scent that intoxicated Doug the whole time. Mmmmmmmm tacos y tortillas al fresco!

We instantly changed and headed down to the beach. But first..

Some silliness. Side note: I scoured the web searching for beach wear that would cover our very pale bodies. Success! Hats included.


It was time! Anticipation of seeing the sand, water, waves…all of it was bubbling up inside of me.  The minute we saw the sand, I awed about how God was so cool to put this sand here. No man could have done this. She was mesmerized. Let’s get that water!! Slowly slowly slowly, she approached. OK…

Let’s run!!!






You can do this TOT!!









OOOH her little toes in the sand!



Run away!!


Together now20160905_163126 20160905_163119 20160905_163116We got this!


Now some awesome rocks to climb

20160905_164755Then we played hide and seek with Doug. She is a good little hider. Easy if you’re 3 feet tall!!20160905_165229

Then she attempted to take our picture. Or maybe this was the aim she wanted? We’ll never know.  20160905_165716 20160905_165717And BINGO, She got it! 20160905_165722

After cruising around the Del, seeing cute birds, and playing in the sand a bit while we chased her…, 20160905_170246 20160905_222710
We headed back to the hotel to get ready for the next day. Now, first we need to get Tot some dinner since Doug and I would enjoy a later dinner. We headed to a local Mexican restaurant and she wanted to taste the mango salsa. BAD idea, but natural consequences for her when she begged and I warned her. Her lips and mouth burned for 30 minutes and guess who carried her home. (she wanted me to). Milk to the rescue. (and Paw Patrol!)IMG_4075 IMG_4076

What a great first night. Stay tuned for day 2! Questions to learn:  Will Tatum enjoy sleeping in her own bed? Will Tatum sleep in? Will the mommy get to sleep in? Will Doug have to entertain her in the morning? These inquiring questions and so much more!

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