Posts from the ‘California’ category

Santa Monica Sunset

Thursday, June 19th, 2014

Before heading to LAX for a red-eye, we watched the sun set in Santa Monica.

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Norton Simon Museum

Thursday, June 19th, 2014

The Norton Simon Museum in Pasadena, CA

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Huntington Library and Botanical Gardens

Thursday, June 19th, 2014

On our last day in LA, we headed out to Pasadena so I could show Brian the Norton Simon Museum. We had also heard that the Huntington Library, Art Collections, and Botanical Gardens was lovely, and it was open earlier, so we headed there first.

This place is absolutely gorgeous! Henry and Arabella Huntington amassed an enormous collection of rare books, art, and plants from all over the world, and it was an incredibly pleasant and peaceful place to wander around. In the library, we saw a Gutenberg Bible (among many other fascinating things). In the art collection, we saw the usual array of lovely paintings and interesting sculptures, and the gardens truly knocked our socks off. The rose garden was spectacular, and the Japanese garden, with the lily pads, the bridge and the colorful fish swimming in the pond was really breath-taking!

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Getty Villa

Wednesday, June 18th, 2014

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Dinner at Frida’s

Tuesday, June 17th, 2014

After a long day, we had an incredible dinner at Frida’s in Westwood Village, then waited in line for way too long for ice cream sandwiches at Diddy Reise … but they were so good!

 

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LACMA

Tuesday, June 17th, 2014

After the Getty Center, we headed down to see the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. We mixed up the timing, so we only had an hour, but that gave us enough time to breeze through a lovely exhibit on Calder, a Japanese collection of Chinese paintings, and an exhibit of weird modern art, plus one whole floor of the permanent collection … a bit rushed, but a really great hour!!

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Getty Center

Tuesday, June 17th, 2014

After wandering around LA in the morning, we headed up to the Getty Center. This was the first of the five museums that we visited in our three days in Los Angeles. As with almost of the museums in the area, it’s an amazing place to enjoy the outside spaces, then head inside to check out some galleries, then pop back outside to admire the view, then head back inside for more art, and so on. We had both been to the Getty before, but never together. The Getty has a handful of my favorites, and it’s like visiting old friends! We could have stayed all afternoon, but we were also eager to head to LACMA.

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Driving around LA

Tuesday, June 17th, 2014

We started our first full day in Los Angeles by heading over to Burbank to see the area where Brian used to live, then we drove around a bit to see the sites. Up Mulholland Drive for an amazing view of the city, down to Hollywood for the walk of fame (where we saw Darth Vader in front of the Chinese Theatre), we popped in to the ArcLight Cinema because we had heard of it, and because they have a nice bathroom, and we wandered through Amoeba Music (this was all Tuesday morning).

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Visiting Adam and Celeste

Monday, June 16th, 2014

Several months ago, when we booked our trip to San Jose for Sean and Clif’s wedding, we decided to make a whole week out of it by adding on  a few days in Los Angeles. Brian hadn’t been to LA since he lived there for a few months 10 years ago, and it would give us a chance to visit my brother and his girlfriend, and to see the house they bought last summer.

Those two crazy kids got married in private in April, so it turned out that this was also our first time seeing my brother and his wife since they got married! When we arrived in LA, we headed straight to their house. We got a tour of their beautiful new home, and caught up over take-out. I realize now that I forgot to take a picture of them (they probably don’t mind) … I was too busy taking pictures of my niece and nephew: their cats, Ivy and Mosby.

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Pismo Beach

Monday, June 16th, 2014

On our long drive from San Jose to Los Angeles, we stopped in Pismo Beach around 1 or 2pm for a late lunch. We picked out Ventana Grill since it’s right on the water, and we enjoyed a delicious meal with an incredible view! Then, we drove down a bit to get a little closer to the public beach. The sand was incredibly soft, and we got our feet wet in the Pacific Ocean!

Back on the road … we arrived at Adam and Celeste’s house in Los Angeles by dinner time.

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Driving through California

Monday, June 16th, 2014

We spent all day Monday driving down to Los Angeles from San Jose. We took the scenic route to check out Monterey and Pismo Beach along the coast, and to drive along the Pacific Coast Highway … something we have both been wanting to do.

It really is a beautiful country.

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Monterey

Monday, June 16th, 2014

Our in time in San Jose and the San Francisco Bay Area was over, and we spent all day Monday driving down to Los Angeles. We took the scenic route to check out some beautiful towns along the coast, and to drive along the Pacific Coast Highway. It really is a beautiful country.

We stopped in Monterey around 9:30am … only an hour in to our trip, but very worth it! Fisherman’s Wharf is a fun place to walk around, and it was awesome to see a big family of sea lions. We could hear their ‘arf! arf!’ from quite a ways away.

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Backyard BBQ in Berkeley

Sunday, June 15th, 2014

We left San Francisco, crossed the bay and headed over to Berkeley for dinner with our cousins. They treated us to an amazing backyard barbeque in their gorgeous backyard garden. They got married less than two months after we did, so the conversation naturally turned to how awesome our respective weddings were.

Same as that afternoon, our time together was over all too soon, but it was much better to spend three hours with them than none at all.

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San Francisco

Sunday, June 15th, 2014

After saying our goodbyes to the grooms in Campbell, we headed up to San Francisco. There’s never enough time to explore such a great city … last year when we were in town for Lou and Jonathan’s wedding, we got to drive through San Francisco for less than an hour, mostly at night. This time, we had about four hours. I’ve been out to San Francisco five or six times before to visit my dear Lou, and spending four hours with her was definitely better than none at all.

We met up with Lou and Jonathan in her old neighborhood, where I stayed with her in 2006 and 2007, and we walked a very familiar route a few blocks down to the ocean at the Cliff House and Sutro Baths. It feels like the end of the earth there since it’s essentially the northwest corner of San Francisco, and there’s an incredibly wide vista (see video below) … nothing but ocean until you reach Japan. I used to take walks down there every day, so it was great to be back!

Then, we headed over to the Legion of Honor (a museum and park) for amazing views of the Golden Gate Bridge, the South Bay and the Marin Headlands. We drove around a bit so we could see some more of San Francisco, and then after a stop for coffee and ice cream, our time together was over all too soon.

 

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Campbell Farmers’ Market

Sunday, June 15th, 2014

After the wedding on Saturday, we wandered around the downtown Campbell area, which we got to know a bit when we were out here last summer. It’s a fun area, and the water tower looked cool in the setting sun, but it was way too crowded for dinner! On Sunday morning, we headed back to the same neighborhood to meet up with the grooms and enjoy Campbell’s Farmers’ Market for a quick hour before heading north to San Francisco.

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Sean and Clif’s Wedding

Saturday, June 14th, 2014

Saturday morning, we headed to Hellyer County Park for another dance rehearsal before the wedding, and helped out with some of the set up. We left and came back to the park a few hours later and enjoyed an amazing afternoon for Sean and Clif’s wedding. They did an incredible job of bringing their own style to their day, so of course everything was fun and games. They hand-made awesome games for their guests, so we hung out with their friends and family over jumbo jenga, scrabble, tic tac toe, horse racing, skee-ball, you name it. Wonderful to see my old friend so happy 🙂

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Shabbat at Jen’s

Friday, June 13th, 2014

Friday night, we headed to Jen’s house in San Jose for a lovely Shabbat dinner with her and her kids, who love playing with Brian 🙂

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Hyatt Santa Clara

Friday, June 13th, 2014

After wandering around downtown San Jose, Brian dropped me off in Campbell (near San Jose) for a lunch-time dance rehearsal for the super-secret flash mob that Sean and Clif had planned for their wedding. We switched hotels to the Hyatt Regency in Santa Clara (long story), and spent some time in the afternoon enjoying the lovely patio, and the gorgeous California weather.

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Cathedral Basilica of St. Joseph

Friday, June 13th, 2014

Cathedral Basilica of St. Joseph in downtown San Jose, CA

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Downtown San Jose

Friday, June 13th, 2014

We arrived in San Jose on Thursday night, checked in at the hotel and passed out. We only stayed one night at the Hyatt San Jose Downtown because we had actually meant to book a room at a different Hyatt in the area (long story). But waking up in downtown San Jose gave us the chance to wander around on Friday morning. Of course, we found a lovely park, a lovely museum and a lovely church. We popped in to the Cathedral Basilica of St. Joseph, which was absolutely gorgeous.

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Sean and Clif

Sunday, July 21st, 2013

It was a real treat to spend some time with a dear old college friend and his wonderful new fiance. These two know how to have fun and eat right! Less than an hour after we landed, we were in their kitchen snacking on delicious home-made food. On Sunday, we brunched right by starting off at Psycho Donuts, a frightening and entertaining sugar fest. We continued our feast with a Cal-Mex brunch complete with adult-mimosas. We walked it off at Campbell’s farmers market, and wandered through a store full of gorgeous lanterns – we left with our heads full of ideas for crafts projects and redecorating!

No visit to Silicon Valley is complete without a lesson in the history of technology, so we went to the Tech Museum of Innovation. This is a great museum with a lot of hands-on exhibits. It’s great for kids, and kids at heart 🙂

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Louisa and Jonathan’s Wedding

Saturday, July 20th, 2013

When Louisa and I met in college, we would never have guessed that twelve years later, we would cross the country for each other’s weddings barely 18 months apart.

Lou was married at the Stinson Beach Community Center which one arrives at after driving through twenty miles of incredibly curvy windy terrifying yet stunningly gorgeous roads through the Muir Woods, just north of San Francisco. I was absolutely terrified, but I think Brian thought it was the best part of the entire weekend! Check out my post of photos from our drive.

Here’s a few photos from the wedding. I got a few decent shots, and I can’t wait to see the real photos!

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Stinson Beach

Saturday, July 20th, 2013

You can’t go to a wedding near a gorgeous historic scenic beach without slipping away to see the actual beach! Here’s a few shots before a foggy sunset

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Driving in the Bay Area

Saturday, July 20th, 2013

We drove from our hotel in Santa Clara to Half Moon Bay for a brief but wonderful visit to this lovely little coastal town. We had an incredible lunch at Fish & Frites, then headed back to the 101. We drove straight through San Francisco and across the foggy Golden Gate Bridge to find clear skies and gorgeous views in Sausalito.

It was great to be back on familiar roads in Marin, where I spent the summer of 2003, and several visits since then! Pretty soon, we found ourselves driving through the gorgeous and terrifying roads in the Muir Woods heading towards the coast, and Stinson Beach. I drove that route with Lou ten years ago, and I had completely forgotten how terrifying those curvy windy roads were, but they are also incredibly gorgeous. All of a sudden, you turn a curve and there’s the most incredible view of the Pacific Ocean at Stinson Beach.

Then, after the wedding, we drove back to Santa Clara by way of a detour to explore San Francisco, and a late-night stop along the Bay for a much needed visit to In and Out Burger!

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Shabbat in San Jose

Friday, July 19th, 2013

We spent a long weekend in the San Francisco Bay Area to celebrate my dear friend Louisa’s wedding. While we were in town, we got to spend some time with three dear old friends who all live in/near San Jose.

We landed mid-afternoon on Friday, and headed straight to Sean’s house to meet his brand new fiance and their puppy. They had prepared a delicious feast for us because we knew we would be hungry after crossing the country!

Then, we picked up some wine, picked up Becca, and headed over to Jen’s house – she and her husband hosted a lovely shabbat dinner so that we could get everyone together. It was wonderful to go from a lingering heat wave in Boston to a shady comfortable backyard feast, and it’s a rare treat to begin Shabbat with some of my oldest friends.

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Lou and Jonathan

Saturday, November 17th, 2007

While visiting Lou in San Francisco for a most unhappy occasion, I finally got to meet her wonderful boyfriend!

Here’s my photos from their wedding in 2013

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Lou’s Apartment

Friday, November 16th, 2007

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Lou is a few blocks from the Pacific

Thursday, November 15th, 2007

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