Dr. Seuss Plants and Teen Angst


*It was sunny, okay?

Two weekends ago, I flew out to San Diego for a girls' weekend with two of my oldest friends. You know those friends you don't have to see or even talk to very often, but when you do it's like no time has passed at all? That's the best kind of friend, and I am very blessed to have not just two but many friends like that.

Alison and I have known each other since the sixth grade. Hilda joined our crew freshman year of high school (holler to my Wheaton North friends!), but I kind of forget she wasn't around since the beginning. All weekend I kept saying, "It's just like the sixth grade!" And Hilda was all, "I didn't know you guys in the sixth grade!" She knew what I meant.

Earlier this summer, Alison and her husband moved to California, and as you can see I wasted almost no time buying a ticket to go see her. I told her it was 30% a desire to see her and 70% California. Just being honest.

Actually it was more like 90/10.
No hard feelings, Al.

It was a super short trip: I got in Saturday at 10 am and flew out Monday at 4 pm. We spent all day Saturday sightseeing in San Diego, and Saturday night we ran the Electric Run 5k in Del Mar. We spent Sunday in Alison's town of Temecula, going to wine tastings and shopping in old town. Today's post will just be scenes from our twelve-hour tour of San Diego. Hope you enjoy!
The first thing we did after leaving the airport was head over the bridge to Coronado Island. We saw a fantastic view of the city, ate lunch at the Coronado Brewing Company, and drove to the beach. It had been a very long time since I'd dipped my toes in the ocean.
The weather was gorgeous the two days we were there--75 degrees and sunny. People were laying out, playing beach volleyball, and even surfing. I can't even really imagine what it would be like to live close enough to spend every day on the beach. I picture it like the show Orange County. You know, all teenage angst and tan lines and stuff.

After leaving Coronado, we drove to Balboa Park to walk around the December Nights Festival. There was lots of fair food and also booths with food from all around the world. Christmas lights were up, but it didn't really seem like Christmas at all with the palm trees and the sun shining down. I actually got kind of hot!

One thing I couldn't get over were the crazy amount of succulents everywhere. Seriously, succulent explosion all over the dang place in every restaurant, every hanging pot, and even huge succulent bushes! There were also tons of weird-looking plants and giant trees. I felt like I was walking around a Dr. Seuss book. I kept taking pictures of the plants, and Hilda said, "So... you're going to write an entire blog post filled with pictures of flowers aren't you." Kind of yes.
We spent a little time walking around Balboa Park, although we didn't ride anything. I used to love roller coasters back in the day, but now I think I'm too old for them. I get really motion sick when I ride them now. Sad!
Our last stop before our Electric Run in Del Mar was La Jolla. We saw the cove, watched the sun set over the ocean, and ate sandwiches for dinner. Then we changed in the fitting room of a Marshall's for our run! 

*Oh, and in case you were wondering, it's extremely difficult to explain to a fitting room attendant that you're changing into a different outfit of your own clothes and aren't actually buying anything or trying on any of the clothes in the store. Plus, when you walk out holding a bag of clothes, you look like a shoplifter. Not our smartest move, but it was pretty funny. Alison and Hilda were making fun of me because I just kept repeating, "We just changed," to the lady while she stared at me in confusion. Yes, obviously you changed. You're in a fitting room.

I love San Diego!

*Next up on the California whirlwind trip, pictures (and maybe even a video!) of our Electric Run in Del Mar on Saturday night.

A question for people who live near/have been to San Diego: did we hit all the good spots on our tour?


  1. San Diego is on my bucket list for sure. Loved all the pictures.

  2. We're going to San Diego in 9 days! We're having a family reunion out there and I am definitely looking forward to the warmth. Also taking notes, because I have no idea what sights should be seen and so on.

    I can't do roller coaster anymore, either! Well, slight exaggeration - I can still do most of them, but ever since carnival rides starting making me nauseous, I've known it's only a matter of time.

  3. This was so fun to read! I am at an internet cafe here to work on RTA and I'm distracted by reading blogs =)

    Not feeling like Christmas at all because it is hot? Man! That sounds familiar over here in Myanmar.

    I'm glad you had a fun trip. Those pictures are really pretty and this might sound weird but it's nice to see America again even if it is over the Internet.

  4. La Jolla is my favorite! I miss living on the west coast so might right now!

  5. I've never been to California, and I so want to go! I have a friend that works in L.A., so I need to get on that. I am also jealous that it's so nice and beautiful and warm there, while we're expecting snow.

    1. *and by "on that" I mean "on planning a trip." Not "on" my friend.

  6. I've always wanted to go to San Diego! After visiting LA with a friend, I was pretty hooked on California. Love it!
    Changing in Marshall's like that totally sounds like something I'd do, and I would have been just as awkward. I can promise you that.

    Also, that really talk plant thing? Totally looks like you're wearing a weird hat. If it was planned? You nailed it. If that wasn't planned? Still nailed it.

  7. Sounds like you really got a lot into your trip! This time of year, I start getting homesick for palm trees strung with Christmas lights, boat parades, and general warm-climate Christmas festivities. Moving from Florida to Minnesota has been an adjustment! I love your pictures; even if they are Cali they still remind me of home. :o)

  8. How fun! I love that you got to do so much for such a short trip! And, can't wait to read the next post about your run! I haven't been to San Diego in forever, but love traveling so probably need to add it back to our list!

  9. You got to see some great spots!! I said the same thing about the cactus garden at Balboa being straight out of Dr. Seuss! P and I totally avoided the Balboa festival after seeing the insane traffic and where people were parking for it that Friday night :) We live close to Balboa though, about 2 miles. Coronado so far is my favorite beach for going to the beach at, it's so nice, clean, and hasn't been overly crowded the times I've went. Looks like a fantastic trip and you got some great pictures!

  10. Looks like an awesome trip! I could use a little 75 and sunny right now although i think my mind would get confused it being christmas time and all. Great green hat picture!

  11. I would love to be able to wake up and walk to the beach. That is one weird tree, but I imagine succulents are all that survive under that heat. Oh to have been able to see the attendants face.

  12. Love those kinds of friends! What a fun weekend!

  13. Lovely photos! Looks like an awesome place to visit. Glad to hear you had a good time with friends.

  14. What an awesome weekend you had! Lovely photos (and lovely friends too!). I can't believe you managed to do all this in such a short amount of time. AND you even managed to fit in a 5k run? That is some serious holidaying. I hope I'll get to see California one day. :)

  15. Fun times!! You hit up some of my favorite spots and I think you did pretty good for the time you had. Last week was our first cold week so you got in while the getting was good. Glad you had a fun time!!! Your observations on the surrounding foliage were very interesting! It's something I probably stopped noticing.

  16. La Jolla is definitely one of my favorites. Your pictures are awesome and now I'm wishing I wasn't in the cold Indianapolis weather.

  17. We saw some crazy Suess-like plants in Italy too. Love how you positioned yourself in your photograph so the whimsical tree appears to sprout from your head. :)

  18. What a beautiful weekend! I can't believe we JUST missed each other. :) My sister took me to Oldtown for the first time this past weekend - it is a very cute area of SD reminiscent of Old Sacramento, if you are familiar with that area of California's capital. And yes, the succulents are EVERYWHERE and they are great haha.

  19. Your photos are gorgeous and you definitely hit most of the highlights! Next time you come I'd recommend checking out the zoo (plan for that being a full-day thing) and more of the breweries. And Old Town -- it's like a park/outdoor museum of sorts about the earliest settlements.

    And I'm totally loving your line about "teen angst and tan lines." Hah!

  20. I visited the San Diego area in June because my boss lives there 50% of the time. She lives in Solana Beach (near La Jolla) and it was sooooo pretty. Walking distance to the beach? Yes please.

    It looks like you had perfect weather and so much fun! How clever to change in the fitting room. And I would be one to reassure them that I was "just changing" too!

  21. San Diego (really, all of SoCal) is my favorite place in America. I will retire there one day. You did a wonderful job capturing its beauty.

  22. Fun, fun, fun!! I've never been to San Diego (only LA), but it's on my list of places to visit! Looks like you ladies had a wonderful time. And such pretty photos! The weather sounds divine!

  23. That is a crazy plant hat. And being accused of shop lifting is one of my greatest fears (we accidentally stopped into walmart over here while carrying a box of chocolates in a gift bag that had been previously purchased at another walmart (it was a gift for a friend we were on our way to visit) and just imagine explaining to the very suspicious walmart guards in MANDARIN that we'd already purchased this item. They let us go in the end).


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