things to do
San Francisco has so many really great urban hikes around the city. I’ve lived here almost 10 years and I’m still discovering ones I’ve never been to. Brita asked me to put together my favorite hikes in the city and test out their new water bottles, I was happy to. The Brita Water bottle has a filter in the bottle, which comes in super handy when you are stuck with a less-than-ideal water source. San Francisco is my favorite place in the world and even if you are visiting I recommend mixing one of these little hikes in with all the regular tourist sites. They all take less than an hour and have great sweeping views.
1. Historic Trail. This trail is great because it makes me feel like I’m not smack dab in the middle of a city. It goes through a really nice wilderness area and ends up near Sutro Tower. The trailhead starts at Stanyan and 17th and is just a set of wooden stairs tucked in between two houses on the street.
See more after the jump.
We scored a hard-to-get reservation to Havasupai next week. If you haven’t heard of it, Havasupai Falls are these huge beautiful sets of waterfalls at the bottom of the Grand Canyon on an Indian Reservation. We used to go in high school and college a lot and it is amazing. You go for 4 or 5 days, camp, hike, swim in the clear blue pools and go cliff jumping. It is like a little hidden oasis in the middle of the hot desert. The only catch is it is a little tricky to get there. You can backpack the 12 miles in (the start point is a five hour drive from Las Vegas or Phoenix) or they have a helicopter service that flies in and out every few days. Once you get there the campgrounds are really affordable but you usually have to call in February to book them. We miraculously got some last month after a someone else cancelled theirs. I’ve been planning my packing list which includes a swimsuit and sunscreen (That’s all I need, right?) Here are some of the items I’ve been browsing from Target. I can’t wait to jump into those crystal blue pools! Have you ever been to Havasupai?
Havasupai Photo by Bryan Brazil
We are heading up to Stinson Beach to enjoy the beginning of summer at a friend’s beach house. I’m so excited, it’s even supposed to get into the 70′s! I went to Target last week to stock up on summer supplies, every time I go there I buy half the store. I’m not even sharing all the rad stuff I bought. I ran out of space on this post. Also, just a heads up: if you are in the market for some sand toys they have the best selection in the store (not the one below, I couldn’t find them online.) I realize by explaining this I’m revealing how I care way too much about sand toys BUT all my sand toy dreams came true at Target. I always do research before I buy anything and look for the most beautiful and best kind to buy. For two years I haven’t found any sand toys I like. They are always weird colors or really cheaply made. The selection at Target was so good I actually had to edit and take sand toys out of my cart. In case anyone cares as much as I do, get thee to Target. Have you found anything good at Target lately?
Beach Toys: As a mom of two little boys these get used at just about every park outing (find the good ones in-store.)
Chambray Skirts: I love these (here/here/here) for summer because they are casual and comfortable. So easy to throw on over a swimsuit.
Heart Sunnies: I bought a pair of these last week. I lose sunglasses like nobody’s business. Best to keep ‘em affordable.
Towels: All of our beach towels had disappeared so we were due for some new ones (here/here/here/here). Such a good selection.
Floppy Sunhat: I literally tried on 20 different hats at different stores and this is the only one that didn’t fall in my face.
Beach Bag: I’ve been wearing lots of basics like chambray lately so the pattern on this bag livens up my outfit.
Sandals: I like sandals I can wear to the beach or out to dinner. These are perfect.
On our way to Belgium we stopped in Deauville for some beach time. I had seen pictures of the Deauville umbrellas on Meg’s blog so I was pleasantly surprised that we had parked right in front of them. I couldn’t believe how great the umbrellas were, all brightly colored and lined up right in a row. It was pretty perfect. Deauville is a charming and relaxed bordwalk-y town. The kind of place where you get the feeling every person there is on vacation. It is very near the D-Day Normandy beaches so worth a stop if you are touring those anyway.
all photos by Oh Happy Day
After Normandy we decided to take a spur of the moment trip to Belgium and The Netherlands so that we could see the Tulip fields. Amsterdam is only a five hour drive from Paris, so it was an easy and quick trip. When we decided to move to Paris I made a list of “bucket list” of things I wanted to do while we were here. And seeing the tulip fields in Holland was near the top of the list. Our schedules have been busy during the small window that the tulips are in bloom so we thought we were going to have to miss them. I’m so happy we made it happen. The colors were so vibrant and it was one of my favorite days of this whole trip.
Have you ever seen the tulip fields in real life? It is crazy how colors that bright come from nature, they almost seem fake.
Sorry there are so many photos. It was hard to edit them down.