Birthday/Anniversary Weekend Round Up

Brace for rambling. After that: photos.

My weekend turned out infinitely better than expected (no offense, Mr. Boyfriend-O-Mine).

After a lot of worrying on my part (and nagging about making sure Cheeto and Little One were taken care of), my boyfriend picked me up from work on Friday. The kick-buttiness commenced. First we dropped off Cheeto at her old foster mom's house (she's a celebrity dog trainer, apparently, but gives a nice boarding discount to rescue animals). Next we picked up delish Earl Grey tea bobas and pot roast sammiches from the Urth Caffe (you're probably going to notice an eating theme here, btw). Then Mr. Boyfriend-O-Mine asked me to enter our destination into my phone's navigator application.

Our surprise destination: "Cat's Favorite Beach.*" Nicely done, Mr. Boyfriend-O-Mine.

We left early enough in the day to enjoy the sights on our way up to the Bay Area. Traffic moved along nicely, though we passed two separate cars whose engines had caught on fire. Not just smoking fire, actual flame fire. Scary. Unfortunately I wasn't able to get my camera in time.

That camera comment sounds callous, upon second reading. The people in the cars were fine. For the record.

Anyway, we ate dinner at a favorite burrito place in my old neighborhood in San Francisco, stopped in at a Safeway to grab an It's It (which I hadn't had for over 10 years - just as amazing as I remembered) and arrived at the beach at about 10 that evening. I hopped out of the car to find he'd rented a cabin, complete with a fireplace and kitchen. Awesome.

What made this all extra sweet was the fact that I practically grew up at this beach. My family and I spent weeks upon weeks staying in a family friend's beach house. In other words: my boyfriend not only listened to what I had said about these fond memories - he actually remembered. (He's a keeper.)

Morning one involved a breakfast of biscuits & gravy, potatoes and eggs. AND a mocha with whipped cream. Mmm. Then we went for a long walk on the beach, unfortunately spotted a rotting seal carcass being consumed by turkey vultures (sad!), then got caught up in the tide. We retreated back to the cabin just in time for lunch. Yes, lunch. Breakfast was heavy, but I made a point of not eating all of it. Anyhoo, I indulged in a free-range organic beef burger from my old favorite burger stand, a couple of fries and a half and half soft-serve ice cream cone. Heaven. And yes, all diets are off on birthday weekends. Besides, winter is upon us. I need to prepare to hibernate.

Post lunch, we wandered around the tiny beach town and hit up my old haunts - the charming bookstore whose owner hand picks each and every book (I found a coloring book that I remembered filling in as a kiddo) and a supermarket with a surprising array of organic and other nummy foods. Then we went on a drive past a lagoon (gooorgeous AND there were lots of cute duckies) and ventured into a rather secretive smaller beach community. Also gorgeous with enormous trees and lots and lots of green foliage all around.

Next we drove back into San Francisco, wandered around the Palace of Fine Arts, then hunted for Manchurian beef (not the same as Mongolian. Apparently it's a NorCal thing).

Sunday we had brunch at the same restaurant we ate breakfast in the day before. I think I had soup, but it was overshadowed by a really awesome smoothie and a cute dog inhabiting the doorway of the restaurant. We then took a looooong walk on the beach, showered and primped for socializing, and drove to Vallejo to chill with my super awesome cousin. Post chillin', we wen't out with a few other super awesome cousins (and one's super awesome girlfriend) for Chinese food. Post-Chinese food, we went to a super awesome cousin's house and hung out with their super adorable Corgi/Jack Russel mix. Which reminded me of Cheeto, but I made sure I didn't focus on missing her for too long.

* Cat's favorite beach = this place:

Found at my fav. burrito place:

Japanese tea garden goodness:

These guys reminded me of this. "They see me roll on, my Segway, I know in my heart they think I'm white n' nerdy!" Thanks, Weird Al.

Pretty drive near the ocean:
Palace of Fine Arts:


More Japanese Tea Garden:

It's them!
More Beach:
Cool cousin and cute puplet:
Additional Japanese Tea Garden:

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