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Back from Our Trip to CA

July 1st, 2017 at 02:25 am

We are back from our trip to California! It was GREAT and it was also NOT GREAT. But mostly GREAT.

The not great:
- My mother has a lot of trouble relating to my daughter now that she's kind of teenager-y. She's a really good teenager - straight A's, funny, kind. But she does the eyeroll and sometimes she gets bored with adult stuff and answers in monosyllables. She's also a little bit critical (particularly of things like nutrition and my parents' refrigerator is full of processed food). My mother was angry that F wouldn't eat the peanut butter, but F read the label and wanted to know why it had like 15 ingredients. So my mom had a confrontation with her. Or an intervention. Something like that. We almost left, but we worked it out.
- We took the train home and it was 6 hours late! The trip was only supposed to be 18 hours, but it took 24.

Otherwise, GREAT!

We stopped at my parents' for a few days and then headed up the coast to San Luis Obispo, where I went to undergraduate.

Day 1 - ate picnic lunch on the beach in Santa Barbara (about half way there), went to see Cal Poly including the swine unit because F loves pigs, dinner at a place called Oki Momo which we all loved (good fresh food with lots of veggies)

Day 2 - Hearst Castle (upstairs tour - I've done the regular tour and this was way more fun - lots of steps!), then a few miles further up the coast to see the sea lions lying around (they are huge!) then back the other way to Morro Bay where we had lunch with my old college roommate. We had about an hour to relax before heading to Oceano for the Melodrama. F loved it and declared it the best part of the trip.

Day 3 - hike up Bishop's Peak, picnic lunch in a park, to Avila beach (where we built a sandcastle) and then to the Avila barns where we bought some fruit and petted the animals (for $1 you can buy a bag of lettuce to feed them). Dinner at Farmer's Market (the McClintock's BBQ truck was the best deal). Then an ice cream and we headed back to LA.

Back to my parents... where we had the NOT-great argument. (For the record, my mom didn't like me as a teenager either, and I was also a really good teenager - I didn't even try alcohol until I was 18, I didn't date or go out and party - I gave them very little to worry about; I was a know-it-all, eyerolling, snot, though).

But we also got to hang out with my dad in the pool, and we went to mini-golf with my brother, went to the aquarium after dropping him off at the airport, and we hiked to the top of Inspiration Point in Will Rogers State Park (twice). And we walked and walked and walked, which all three of us love.

And now very glad to be home.

We did spend more than I would have liked, but here is how we saved money on the trip:
- Stayed at my parents for most of it; free, and we were able to cook which freed up money to go out some nights
- Drove out (and D drove back because he had to be back at work)
- My parents don't want to travel to visit us, so they helped by buying the train ticket back for me and F
- Lots of picnics so we didn't eat out all the time
- Lots of hiking which is free!
- No souvenirs unless you count the olallibery jam we bought (but I put that in the food budget!)
- Mini golf was my brother's gift to F for her birthday
- The beach is free, too! We made a cool sandcastle

7 Responses to “Back from Our Trip to CA”

  1. Wife of the Deacon Says:


    It sounds like a nice trip overall. I have a daughter is rather selective in who she is emotional with, comes off as aloof, etc. I have had to deal with relatives speaking to her about what they think about her demeanor. Had to shut that train down right there. (Again, a sweet girl, smart and a great dancer). The worst was when my mother and brother had a conversation about how as a pom dancer of the HS squad she should have a much different personality IRL than she does. WTF?

    And I took the train to CA before I resumed flying. It was 42 hours with four kids 11 and under. It was a lot of fun and we still talk about it.

  2. MonkeyMama Says:

    Wow! I hadn't really thought about it, but your post gave me a lot of insight re: a conversation I had with my parents about my oldest niece. I think they just do not do "teen girls" well. (They told me my 13yo niece had changed a lot and was getting hoity toity. ??? NO IDEA. She just ran around like a little kids all weekend with her younger sibling and cousins. They played "the floor is lava" mostly). But now that I think about it, my parents were the same way with me when I was 13. VERY critical and judge-y. Which is otherwise so outside of their character I hadn't really known what to make of it. I was just confused. Now I have some insight. I have a much younger sister who was hell on wheels, so I really thought their perspective had changed dramatically over the years. (You know, like maybe that level of worry should be saved for kids with actual problems.
    Who are actually acting out?). Apparently no? I will have to ponder this a bit...

    Your vacation sounds lovely!

  3. Buendia Says:

    Interesting to hear that you have both experienced "teen prejudice" too! I feel really bad about it... and expecting a teen to act a certain way. Or an adult for that matter! I was nerdy, creative and not very social (which is weird because I'm super social now) and my mom was actually not happy that I didn't have a boyfriends. She was in a sorority, and I wasn't. I think maybe it's about expectations. Both of your comments made me think: maybe all of these people (including my mom) have some sort of perception of what they were like as teens and are expecting teens to be a certain way? A good kid can still be moody sometimes! Or shy or cautious. Maybe there's an element of sexism, too? An expectation that teen girls should be cute and flirty and not sarcastic (my daughter, for better or for worse) or distant or selective. Maybe this is somewhat generational, too, based on an old-fashioned way that girls are supposed to be... Hmmm..

  4. FrugalTexan75 Says:

    I love Hearst Castle!

  5. MonkeyMama Says:

    I have NO IDEA. But I don't know that I would put two and two together except for your post. So, THANK YOU. Big Grin (& because of that, I may confront my parents' more about it if they bring it up again).

  6. wife of the deacon Says:


    The angst that I've experienced being to the mother of this child pales in comparison to the angst that I've experienced being the mother of a child who went to Los Angeles the week after graduating high school, skipped the regular college experience, and signed with an agency and lived away from home for six months before going back and forth from the Midwest to the West Coast for the past six months. I've concluded that as long as I'm happy and content as the parent and my child is well-adjusted and successful, the rest can be regarded as background noise and static to be ignored.

  7. rob62521 Says:

    There is something about a trip that makes you happy to be home. Sounds like a great trip overall.

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