Waaay before kids John and I would take Barkley up to Malibu really early in the morning. He would kayak, (John not Barkley. Basset hounds can't swim!) and I would sit on the beach and read terrible magazines. Then he'd come back and we'd cook out sausages and eat homemade pasta salads and cake. Pineapple upside-down cake, to be specific.
Usually, because we were so early, it was overcast and sometimes drizzling. So it became Crazy Picnic. Because anyone else would just stay home.
Back to the latest Crazy Picnic, we arrived at the beach around 9 and it was capital "c" Cold! Some kind of freak storm must've been pushing through because it's early September and we were freezing!
To warm up, John helped the boys build a river from the stream to the ocean:
We ate at the China Bowl, which has been around since 1946.
Our most favorite thing was the jukebox. It had Patsy Cline, Rod Stewart and Sisco. Because nothing says "Chinese food," like the Thong Song. Hartwell had fun picking songs and even found fifty cents in the coin return! Yay for free songs!
I know you want to know how you get $7 of free food. If you spend $40, you get eggroll. We fell for it. Deliciously.
We returned to the hotel and the boys swan while I nearly passed out in the amazing bed while watching Tom Hanks chase Ewan McGregor. That thing was like mama bear's bed. A little too soft, but also just right.
The next morning we went to breakfast in Solvang. Danish pancakes and sausages.
I went to a Christmas store and bought some Russian ornaments, hung out in a used bookstore, and found a delicious craft store full of dreams!
Oh, and this happened:
"Would you like a glitter tattoo?"
"What would you like? A skull?"
"Yes! Wait. A rose! A rose!"
"What colors do you like?"
"Pink and purple. And red!"
The lady never asked us. We just sort of sat while the kids were made beautiful. It made them so happy.
After that, lunch and aebelskiver. I went native and had a crazy danish open faced sandwich, which I knew would be the thing my Norwegian dad would have ordered.
I think Lompoc is a one time town, sorry Hartwell. But it did remind me of how much fun we would have if we vacationed up the coast with a little trailer. All the awesome California towns with crazy restaurants waiting for spider man and Lydia, the tattooed Hartwell.