Family Visit

It is always so refreshing and relaxing to spend time with my family when they visit. I usually take time off from work and stay at Emily and Jeremy’s home so it feels like a mini vacation for me as well. This visit was their first time in California around the holidays (if you discount last year when Lorelei was born, as celebrating New Year’s was the last thing on our minds). This year, it was a week full of celebrations: a second Christmas, Lorelei’s birthday with a small gathering on the actual day and a second party the following weekend, and New Year’s Eve spent falling asleep by 1030 πŸ™‚ (I didn’t have the excuse of being jet-lagged).

We went to the Yard House at 10 AM to watch the Patriots beat the Dolphins. There were lots of home cooked meals, something I miss about living close to my parents. There was a trip to the petting zoo and the mission in San Juan Capistrano. My parents took Lorelei to the beach on the one day it was in the 70s and sunny. And, as always, lots of down time and catching up with our parents and brother in person. It never gets easier saying goodbye but that’s why we try to make the most of our time together.

I took lots of pictures during the week.


Lorelei woke up on her birthday to a room full of pink balloons. She wasn’t quite sure what to do with them but seemed to have fun. πŸ™‚


Some outtakes from her 1 year photo shoot. She literally couldn’t sit still. Or sit period.



We celebrated Lorelei’s birthday on the actual day with Uncles Bobby and Chris and cousins Owen, Charlie, and Aidan. Again, Lorelei didn’t seem all that interested in her gifts, as much as the cards that went along with them. I think it was probably a little too much at once. Good news is she definitely has enjoyed all of her gifts since.

Lorelei’s cake


Her first doll πŸ™‚


She was a little tentative at first, but seemed to enjoy eating all of the icing. I’m not even sure she ate any of the actual cake. It was late and close to her bedtime so she wasn’t super interested, which Emily was thrilled about. She would rather she get her sugar from all of the clementines she eats.


Her second cake


One day, we went to San Juan Capistrano with the intention of going to the petting zoo at Zoomars. We decided Lorelei was probably a little too young to enjoy it as much as she will in about 6 months when she can walk. (Also, it was $10 for adults!) Zoomars is down the way from a small street with the most charming cafes and shops that sits right next to the train tracks and is only a short walk to downtown San Juan Capistrano and the mission. I have never spent a lot of time in San Juan Capistrano but would love to explore the town more. It is still in Orange County but has a much different feel; it’s smaller and more historic. Which is right up my alley πŸ™‚

I love this kid and all of her silly faces.


Although we decided it would be too much money to spend to go in the petting zoo, there were some llamas and alpacas on the outside. We paid $4 for a tray of carrots and were able to feed them. Lorelei laughed at them but honestly, the adults had the most fun. They were like little scavengers trying to get to the carrots.




We headed over to the Mission and spent about an hour walking around. It’s such a beautiful space. I will be writing a separate post about the Mission soon.


On their last day visiting, we went to brunch at Memphis, one of my favorite restaurants for dinner and happy hour. So I was excited to try out their brunch. And it didn’t disappoint. I wish I had taken pictures of the food but we were all too busy loving on this cute baby.


And as always, the granddogs love spending time with their grandparents too.



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