Thursday, May 3, 2012

California Adventure ~ Part 1: Getting There

We left at 4:40am on Friday morning, April 27.

The boys were a little excited.

We spent the first few hours in the dark, and the next few hours meandering through the endless, indistinguishable Southern Oregon landscape.

There was much cheering when we crossed the border into California.

Yreka was interesting.

It wins the prize for my new favorite how-a-town-got-its-name story.

Mt. Shasta. Spectacular. Breathtaking.

The thing is, Mt. Shasta pretty much blows the rest of the California I-5 landscape out of the water, so if you start by seeing Mt. Shasta, the rest of the view down the freeway is grossly anticlimactic. Sacramento was cool. Then there was some agriculture. And by "some" I mean hours and hours of agriculture. Mixed in with signs about how if farmers don't get enough water, food costs go up. Or something like that.

The grapevine was a big moment for me. Mostly in an it's-about-freakin'-time kind of way.

I also enjoyed driving through Santa Clarita and waving hello to a lot of people in my heart.

Our many bathroom breaks enabled us to miss rush hour in L.A., and we arrived in Anaheim just in time to see the fireworks display at Disneyland from the freeway. The boys were so jazzed. It was like Disneyland was welcoming us.

Upgraded to a suite! Sweet! A gift from God!

I wanted the boys to see the beach in California because it's so different from the Oregon coast, so the next morning, we drove down to Huntington Beach. Then we discovered it costs money to park at the state park (they're free in Oregon) so we flared our nostrils and kept driving, to Newport Beach, where we found a free beach access with one little section of curb, just big enough for our rental car, waiting just for us.

What are the main differences between the beach in SoCal and the beach in Oregon? The water is warmer and there are no cliffs. Also there are way more surfers. And way less rocks.

Jeff loves Becky. :)

After the beach, we drove to Legoland. That's another blog post. But for this post, I've saved the best pic for last. At breakfast in the hotel lobby, Jonathan turned over his chocolate doughnut and said, "Look, Mom. It's another sign. God loves us."