Fun Times in California

We drove down to California last summer when Chris was gone at a paintball tournament. I love this rest stop in the middle of the California desert. It has fun huge rocks to climb, lots of room to run around and great picnic tables. I stopped there both directions as our big “get out and run” stop, and it was perfect.
We went to the beach to meet some of our friends from Vienna who now live in Idaho and were visiting California for the summer. There was a great little stream running down to the ocean. With really great black sand…
James loves buckets and shovels. 
I loved watching Elora play with Marion. It is so sweet to see them together. Reminds me of my own big sister who played with me when I was small.
The stream was a big hit with my kids, as it had warmer water and no waves.
My friend Carmen’s little baby girl LOVED splashing in the water. SO CUTE!
Here is Elora with Vienne, who is almost exactly Marion’s age.

James loved playing with the baby. He is a big fan of people who are smaller than him.

Me and Carmen. I wish we saw each other more often! This was the first time in almost three years! We last hung out when we were pregnant with Marion and Vienne.

While in California we saw my Mayflower Cousin Mandee. We have common ancestors from the Mayflower. We always go eat at the Cheesecake Factory when I am in town, and Mandee puts up with all of mine and Sharon’s crazy kids.

I had always wanted to visit the Newport Beach temple. I had driven by it, but never stopped and actually walked around there. I took all the kids to go see it. They loved the fountains that are all over the grounds.

I love the peaceful feelings I have when I am on the temple grounds. The kids also seem to feel that it is a special place and they love being there. We enjoyed walking around (and sometimes running since James and Marion love to run!) I love all these little ones of mine.

Elora and Oliver are such good friends. I love watching them play together. They are imaginative and always coming up with new games. They especially loved seeing the temple. They both love temples and often ask if we can go see a new temple when we are traveling.

While staying with Sharon we spent time baking together! I made a double batch of pretzel rolls in her mixer and oops! I guess her bowl is a little smaller than mine! I also taught her how to make profiteroles, our favorite. We made ciabatta too. Next time it will be Challah bread! We love staying with Auntie Sharon and our fun cousins.

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