So we did it! We decided it was time to see what flying and out of state vacationing was like with two little kids. I am not completely in love with flying to begin with and the idea of potentially taking a couple of crying kids on a plane made me a little apprehensive... but to my surprise, it was fun! If you are like most people, you probably travel with little ones already, but this was a big deal for me. The kids did great and absolutely loved California. Here are a couple highlights from our trip and maybe a few ideas for you next time you get the family to the LA area.
Ahh, Santa Monica.... We love it here so much. Ryan and I actually spent our Honeymoon at the Fairmont Miramar so it was fun to bring our kids back to our favorite beach. Before kids it was more about jogging on the bike path along the Pacific Ocean, Third Street Promenade and eating at nice restaurants. Now after kids, and the visit was all about the Santa Monica Pier, grabbing a "hot dog on a stick", and playing on the beach. Still really just as great.
We also managed to squeeze in a date night.
Los Angeles sure does love its Jenny Lewis and Ryan and I were fortunate enough to make it in to her sold out show at the Wiltern. Jenny Lewis was incredible and I have been listening to her new album non stop since we've been back. If you get the chance to see a show at the Wiltern, I'd definitely do so! It was originally built in 1931 by the city’s oldest architectural firm and is really one of LA's Art Deco masterpieces.
The kids really loved Olvera Street. Seriously, stop by this little tourist block if you can. It is in the oldest part of Downtown Los Angeles and was the original center of the city in Spanish-owned times. Aside from it's historic attributes (which you can read more about here) it is a fun place to take your family. The shopping is great as the stands are full of inexpensive toys and candy. The food is also amazing, I'd recommend La Luz Del Dia and Mr. Churro. If you are not in the mood for Mexican, then go a block over and get an amazing French dip sandwich at Philippe's ( a sawdust-covered counter restaurant that's been around since 1908).
Disneyland was sort of an obvious stop but well worth it! Clark was tall enough for most of the rides and I held Allie through Pirates of the Caribbean, Mr Toad's Wild Ride, The Haunted House (tame but amazing) and It's a Small World. I know some people hesitate to take babies here but she really had a blast.
I fell in love with all the adorable desserts. $9.95 for a carmel apple was just too pretty to pass up...even if we only ended up eating half of it. It's not like your at Disneyland everyday.
Other highlights of course were eating In and Out burgers at least 3 times, shopping and visiting with Family. Clark had not seen his Great Grandpa since he was 10 months and Allie was able to meet him for the first time.