Now That We’re East…Let’s Go West!

Southern California – July 5-8, 2019

No sooner did we settle into our spot at Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore in Michigan, than we flew back out of Traverse City to San Diego, California.  This trip was made to celebrate Diana’s uncle and step-aunt’s 90th birthdays.  We had seen them back in 2017 and really wanted to be there to celebrate with them.  Don’s children, Barry and Sandy, made plans for a grand birthday party to ensure the day would be extra special.

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Walking into the terminal in San Diego, a replica of the Spirit of St. Louis hung from the ceiling.  Ryan Airlines in San Diego built the original version for Charles Lindbergh, in which he was the first to cross the Atlantic Ocean nonstop in 1927.

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The airport also has this sculpture in their rental car center called Hive.  If you look closely, you will notice that it is comprised of 2200 Ford F-150 rear view mirrors.  Not to worry…Ford owners know that once you hit the gas, these are not needed. 🙂

Our base of operations was this cool little Airbnb in Temecula.

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This gem is hosted by Naomi and is called the Olive Tree Cottage.  We highly recommend it, if you find yourself in the area.  Also, note the SUV.  Since Hertz was out of Fords, we grabbed this Buick from the Gold lineup, in honor of Uncle Bob.  You may recall that he and his wife Marion passed within the last year. He spent his entire career at Buick in Flint.  This Encore was a fun little ride, but it couldn’t hold a candle to our Escape.

And here is a fun little slo-mo I took of the hummingbirds playing by the feeder on the porch:

 

It’s amazing to watch how they use their tails to keep still.

Friday afternoon we met up with Diana’s cousins Debbie (who flew in from Michigan), Barry, and his wife Dawn. We had a great time exploring Temecula. After a long day of flying and visiting, we settled in back at the cottage for the evening. Diana heard the closet door rhythmically rattle and thought ghost???  It couldn’t be…this place is too new.  I was sitting on the edge of the bed taking my shoes off and noticed the entire bed moving.  Was I still on the plane?  No, it was the Ridgecrest 7.1 earthquake, nearly 150 miles away from us!  No damage in Temecula…only a gentle rocking back and forth.  It took awhile for the chains on the ceiling fan to stop swaying.  🙂

The next day was the party, which was held in Escondido.  Around 120 relatives and friends were there to celebrate with Don and Barb, and it couldn’t have been more perfect.

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This is Barb and Don with Sandy and Barry behind them.

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Here is Diana with her cousin Wyatt.  His twin brother Wesley was there also, so it was good they had name tags.  🙂

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And here is Diana with her cousins Debbie (Marion & Bob’s daughter), Evie (Ken & Margery’s daughter), Sandy (Lucille & Don’s daughter) and close family friend Jan.

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Don addressed the gathering, starting with “I’d like to say a couple of words.  Thank you.” He and Barb were highly appreciative of the outpouring of love that was sent their way.

The next day, several of us met for lunch and then went to Barry and Dawn’s place in Sun City for the afternoon.  It was a nice wrap up to a great weekend.  We flew home on Monday, passing several of the sites we had seen on our trip west earlier this year.

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Here is the western edge of the Grand Canyon.  The thing I find amazing about this photo is the fact you can make out the curvature of the earth at 36,000 feet!

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Here are the Coral Pink Sand Dunes.  We didn’t have the time to visit them, but we were in the vicinity.

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And here is Bryce Canyon from the west side.  Rainbow Point is to the right and Sunrise Point and Sunset Point are to the left.  We even flew directly over Jim and Barb’s bardominium in South Dakota.  🙂

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It certainly was a great weekend in Southern California.  We are so glad we were able to celebrate with this charming pair.  🙂  We will see them at their 95th!

Next up:  We reunite with friends in Leelanau, and find new adventures in Northern Michigan.  All this while preparing for our trip to the UK in September.  That will be here before you know it.  Look for that in our next Saturday morning post.  Until then, safe and happy travels to all!

 

 

 

 

18 thoughts on “Now That We’re East…Let’s Go West!”

  1. How nice that you were able to fly back west attend this joyous occasion. Sweet celebration. Love the photos from the air. You video of the hummer was great. We have several that visit us out by the pool. They are fast little buggers.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. That is so sweet that you returned for the family celebration! It looked like a wonderful, loving gathering.

    Hummingbirds are always so much fun to watch. That’s a very cool video of them in slow motion!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, Laurel! I love that iPhone feature. I leaned my phone against the column on the porch, started the video and let it run for a couple of minutes without me there. 🙂

      Like

  3. What a fun trip to celebrate both their birthdays. They look great! Glad you liked Temecula, I enjoyed living in the area for many years. That mirrors-as-art piece is awesome, thanks for sharing! Nice to have clear skies flying back. You got some great shots!!!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. We definitely want to spend more time in Temecula, Jodee…it was great! On the opposite wall from that mirror piece was one called Swarm. It was made from a bunch of Hyundai taillights, Jodee. 🙂

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  4. Wonderful post, I can relate to flying back a long ways to celebrate family! It must have been a swell party.
    Also, great shot of the curvature of the earth! I try to do that at Wendover, Nevada but it was a fail.
    That is a neat route, you got to see up above what you missed below!

    Liked by 1 person

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