Lauren and Mikaela--identical twins living on opposite coasts--blog about the story of life and their adventures in faith.


Colorful California Capers

Sitting for eight blissful hours in the car was our reward for making it out of the Grand Canyon, and I don’t think there was one of us who didn’t relish that opportunity! Besides simply resting, a dear family gave us gifts to open every day on our vacation, so that was a daily highlight, and my seat partner Susanna and I discovered that long car rides are the perfect opportunity to trade back, feet, and hand massages. That’s what sisters are for, right?

In any case, we’re not the sort of people to drive eight hours nonstop without taking in a few sights—like Historic Route 66.
Jonah was excited to see the eccentric little town upon which the movie Cars is based. 

We decided that we had to stop and In-n-Out Burger, and I must say it was one of the best burger places I have ever eaten at!  The menu consisted of less than ten items, but everything was inexpensive and delicious.  And the best part?  If you look really hard, you can find Bible verses hidden on their paper products!  Isn't that fabulous?
That evening, we found ourselves braving the infamous LA traffic, and it was still infamous at 9 o’ clock at night!  We pointed eagerly at the beautiful palm trees lining the streets, lit up against the night sky.  We gaped like small-towners from Washington at the lavish skyscrapers and buildings.  And then we arrived at Disneyland. 

Papa had been there thirty years ago, and Sandi and Ron have been there several times, but it was a brand new experience for the rest of us.  To be honest, Disneyland has never been the Mecca of vacation spots for me, so I didn’t really know what to expect.  I certainly never expected to walk into an adorably quaint little town filled with complete, wholehearted fun and musicians on every corner!

In one corner, horse-drawn carriages were trotting through the square; in another, a trolley was getting ready to pull away, and in yet another Mary Poppins and Bert were decked out in their horse-race attendance attire, smiling and greeting everyone. 

Sandi and Ron prepare to ride the much-loved Peter Pan ride!

We rode roller coasters of frightening proportions, braved the Hollywood Tower of Terror elevator drop, and screamed all the way down Splash Mountain!


After Disneyland, we were all eagerly looking forward to SeaWorld, which we had heard so many good things about.  The first to greet us was this flock of flamingoes meandering down the walkway! 

God must have wanted to make sure we weren’t feeling homesick, though, because we took in a show at SeaWorld we weren’t quite planning on seeing: a thunderstorm. It lasted the whole day.
And while we're on the subject, what do you think of our chic storm attire? 

But we aren’t fairweather Californians—we are hardened Washingtonians, and we shrugged our shoulders and stuck it out: After all, what’s a little rain when you're getting dowsed by Shamu the whale?  And why should SeaWorld cancel the dolphin show and rides? Who wouldn't want to fly on a trapeze or ride a roller coaster in a lightning storm! (-:  Apparently they didn't quite see it that way.

Du-dum.  Du-dum. "I want you for dinner, little girl!"

The whales were magnificent!

In the evening, a beautiful sunset at a beach near San Diego called our names!  Sadly, we discovered the California ocean water was nearly as cold as at home.

Our vacation was nearing its end as we pulled into San Francisco, where I instantly fell in love with the beautiful yet eccentric city on the bay.  We weren’t quite as entranced with the offensive signs and advertisements that surrounded us, so we kept our eyes on the scenery! 

that first evening, the scenery was breathtaking as we strolled across the Golden Gate bridge at sunset, the wind swirling and the air quite brisk.

Such a chilly evening definitely called for clam chowder in sourdough bread bowls!  And the next day, we had to return to the sourdough factory for more of that world famous, 150 year old starter and a tour of the factory! 

Nope.  We were not excited to be at Ghirardelli Square!

Sibling love at the pier!

On the way out of town, we of course had to drive Lombard Street, the most crooked street in the world.  Can you imagine driving our twelve passenger van down that thing?  Our heroic dad did!

Our final stop of our vacation was the Jelly Belly factory where we were privileged to taste such flavors as may cause inadvertant expectoration of the bean: barf, pencil shavings, skunk, and the like.  Classy stuff.  But this picture of Ronald Reagan made entirely of jelly beans helped to make up for those unfortunate flavors!

Our vacation now drawing to a close, we spent our last evening on a picnic reminiscing about our favorite parts of the vacation.  I feel so blessed to have been able to see so much with my family and discover even more the beauty of God's creation!  So with 9 states, 15 days, and over 3,000 miles behind us, we turn our attention to the mountains of dirty laundry and uncountable memories. 

Note: Photos taken by our official head vacation photographer Mama and assistant photographer Mikaela. 


  1. those photographs are stunning. Do you travel with a professional photographer!? hahaha. What a great trip that was. I'm so glad you had that special time and memories with your family. Family really is what life if all about.

  2. Love the photos, and yes, our water is just as cold as the water up north...

  3. Jewels--I know, exactly! I don't own a camera, but Mama has a nice professional one and then we have four other cameras besides! And photo editing is my best friend! (-: And amen--family is such an important blessing!
    Shelbi--Thanks! Great to see you on the blog!
    Alessandra--(-: Thanks! I don't know why I thought it would be warmer...wishful thinking, I suppose! It was still beautiful though!

  4. Loved the second installment - the photos, the descriptive writing. Thanks for including us in your great family vacation! : )


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