|Casa de Train...sorry Ryan too many tokens.|
|Ryan and Casie|
|The other children were jealous of Ryan's |
|We both like ducks.|
|Oh yes this is awesome!|
|I may have bought that for him...|
|Ryan, playing hide and seek with me.|
The next mandatory stop is San Juan Bautista to see the chickens cross the road and the mission. Ryan decided he was too antsy to get to Monterey, so we didn't stop there either.
|Ryan, the snob|
|So stuck up|
|Wow, Casie, wow|
|Look who else is stuck up...|
|Our stuck up room view|
We had to wait a bit to check into our 1950's church camp room, so we went down to the beach to explore the tide pools. I love tide pools. I have a bad habit of disturbing mother nature, especially sea anemones and hermit crabs. I can't help it. It's so much fun. Ryan was pretty pumped about the water too. He was so pumped he decided to stick his feet, tennis shoes and all, in the water. I found it funny. Casie was a little distraught because she forgot to bring a second set of shoes. Before you all start judging Mama Casie, she found Ryan's fireman boots from his darling, but random, fireman costume in the trunk of her car. The boots looked lovely on him.
|Sisters from another mister!|
|We were watching him...promise|
|Ryan, the oceanographer|
|He doesn't like to be dirty.|
|A real live hermit crab|
|These two people love the ocean more|
than humanly possible
|...However they don't love kelp like I do|
|He stared for hours|
|What funny looking sea otters.|
|Not only a godmother, but a godteacher|
|My hand makes a nice helmet|
|Dig in Ryan, dig in|
After checking into our room, I decided we needed to go to the cemetery. Sounds a little creepy, but my mom used to take me there when we were little to watch the deer eating the grass. Naturally, I had to share my childhood memories with Casie and Ryan. Well it was a long walk and Ryan fell asleep in his stroller, but it was lovely anyways. We looked at the million dollar homes and decided we wouldn't mind living there. We glanced at the ocean and the sun setting and took in deep breaths of ocean air to purify our central valley pesticide filled lungs. The deer weren't at the cemetery. No need to worry, they were across the street at the golf course.
|I'll take the house, hold the moose statue.|
|Deer with the light house in the background|
After our long walk, we went to dinner. Dinner was so delicious there was no time for pictures. Another mandatory stop is the Ice Cream Shoppe in Pacific Grove. The ice cream is good...but it's the decor that really surprises you. Beatles memorabilia is everywhere...along with Afghan rugs for sale with little signs that say the, "Afghanis are our friends," and wireless internet with another note that says, "Wiki Leaks are supported here".
|Ice Cream Shoppe|
Ryan goes to bed at 8:00 pm, so that's what time we had to be back to Asilomar by. Lights out at the kind of creepy Stuck Up Inn didn't seem to make my $75 bed (we split the cost) anymore comfortable.
The next day I forced Casandra and little Ryan to go to Toasties with me for breakfast. To put a small dent in my high caloric weekend extravaganza, I went on a run along the beach. Turns out no matter what the scenery, running is still horrible. Toasties was delicious as always. Ryan made friends with our neighboring breakfasteers and I spoon fed him maple syrup. That's one of my godmotherly duties.
|Only the purest maple syrup for my godson.|
|Creepy Elephants...one is headless|
|He's pretty intelligent|
Next it was off to the Monterey Bay Aquarium, where sea life is treasured. I must admit, I'm more of a land animal girl. Give me a zoo any day over an aquarium, but for my friend Casie... who has ocean water for blood, I made the sacrifice. Ryan loved looking at all the bright colored fish and getting to touch some sea sponges (which he affectionately called, "Ball"). They have a new interactive kiddie area that is full of soft foamy kid friendly things, that Ryan really enjoyed. My favorite part occurred when Casie was off preforming motherly duties and I was left to my own devices. I noticed the trainers bringing out clams and such for the adorable sea otters. Sea Otters are perhaps my favorite sea creature, along with manatees and seals. Once the annoyingly tall teenagers moved out of my way, I got an excellent view of the sweet little otters devouring their lunch.
The best part of the trip was getting to see Monterey, a place I have gone a lot, through a toddler's eyes. Everything was new and exciting. From a Casa de Swing to a sea sponge that looks like a ball, Ryan was definitely the star (starfish?) of the show.
|Ryan says, "Fishhhhhh."|
|Toola, Danny's otter equivalent|
|Kelp and such|
|The Ice Cream Shoppe guy would like this|
|Touching a ray|
|I also really enjoy jelly fish|
|Poop Soup: a recipe for energy, fertilizer, and much much more|
|This is where poop soup comes from|
|My unoriginal, but hilarious idea|
|Sea sponges are Ryan's favorite|
|Life lessons at the aquarium|
|The cutest fish there|
|Somebody didn't like the splash zone|
|Just keep swimming|
|Wish on a fish|
|The kid play area...looks like I might be having a little |
too much fun pretending to be a mermaid.
|Ryan's favorite cave|
|My sea horse friend|
|A sea horse family!|
|Apparently I'm the greenest person Casie knows.|
|The Old Monty Bunch!|
On the way home we stopped at Split Pea Andersen's for some tasty split pea soup. Ryan mostly smeared it on his mother. I engulfed mine.
|This way guys|
|Ryan is disgusted by all the carbs|