The first week of December, Matt and I were lucky enough to head out to Palm Springs, CA for a few kid-free days. We planned this trip before Thomas was even born and have been looking forward to it for a while! Matt had work commitments on two mornings so his travel was all paid for and I just tagged along for the ride. :)
Palm Springs was nice, and we very much enjoyed our time away, but it's probably not a place we'd pick to vacation to again. The area was inland - so dead smack in the middle of the desert instead of on the coastline like LA or San Diego. There were no beach views but plenty of older people enjoying their retirement. There was lots of new development too so plenty of shopping areas for this gal!
We technically stayed in Rancho Mirage right outside of Palm Springs in the Westin Villas. It was all decorated for Christmas which was pretty but what I was most amazed by were the colorful flowers that were still in bloom. You know I like some happy flowers! I actually took lots of pictures of these so that I can hopefully have a flower bed of my own to match them this summer.
These were our neighbors. Lots of ducks! They wandered around everywhere. Even on our front porch, apparently. We didn't see them there ourselves but let's just say we had to watch our step when coming and going.
We arrived late on a Wednesday evening and had a chill night after a day of traveling. We only had two things on our agenda for the whole trip: see two movies and I wanted to get my nails done. Two things we don't get to do often at home with two small kids underfoot!
We knocked the first movie off the list Thursday afternoon and saw Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1. I think I liked it more than Matt did, and I definitely liked it more than the first two movies. I think since I was further away from when I read the books, I didn't remember any of the details and so didn't know what they left out. l made the mistake of re-reading the first book the week before seeing the movie and learned my lesson!
Every Thursday night in downtown Palm Springs they have a street fair of sorts. It was a much bigger deal than we were expecting - I bet it was a mile long! We walked up and down it and perused lots of homemade wares before sitting down outside at a Mexican restaurant for dinner.
Let me tell you about the absolute best part of our trip: cheesecake for breakfast in bed. Yes, you read that correctly. It was the most gloriously gluttonous thing that we did, and we did it not one morning, not two, but THREE mornings in a row. Just trying to get a head start on the holiday weight gain I guess. :)
What happened was that Wednesday evening we ate at The Cheesecake Factory for dinner and were so stuffed that we took our cheesecake dessert home with us. We forgot to eat it that night before going to bed but we remembered it when we woke up on Thursday and knocked out half of it! Friday morning we polished off the other half of it and then were so distraught that we wouldn't have any for our last morning there that we had dinner at The Cheesecake Factory again and brought home another piece. You only live once, y'all.
Friday morning while Matt was speaking to a credit union board about something boring, I'm sure, I headed to the spa for a relaxing mani/pedi combo. That afternoon we saw movie #2 on our list - Gone Girl. I had read the book and knew what to expect, but Matt had no idea. He loved it! I usually don't love movies if I've already read the book but I agree, it was a pretty darn good movie. The only things I can think of that were left out are completely insignificant to the story line.
With everything on our agenda already done, we decided to get up Saturday morning and drive up the mountains to a small town called Idyllwild. When we got in the car and out on the road, it looked like we were just going to drive straight into the bottom of the mountain. I couldn't see any roads. But the road is there and it is curvy, I tell ya. I usually don't get car sick at all but I definitely had to keep my eyes on the road during all the twists and turns.
What do you do at a lookout point when you've got nothing but deserts and mountains behind you? These days you take a selfie.
After 22 miles of curvy roads, we finally made it to the mountain town. We hopped out and were excited about the potential that the street full of stores had to offer. I was excited to buy some unique Christmas gifts
After going through every shop, this sign was about the coolest thing we found. Sadly, all the stores were more like junk/thrift stores (in a bad way) or just had tourist stuff. We both bought shirts to remember our trip by but that was about it. Matt commented that the mountain people of Idyllwild kinda looked liked they wanted to eat us. They must not get a lot of preppy southern visitors.
We took a different route down the back of the mountain (still curvy, still twisty, still car-sicky) and passed by a huge wind farm. I thought this was so interesting! And kinda weird. Just rows and rows of different sized wind mills, some turning but some not, to create energy. Definitely not the kind of farming we do where I grew up. :)
It was nice to get away with hubs and get some good sleep and unwind, but we kinda missed our favorite little people! We are so incredibly grateful to Matt's parents for keeping them safe and entertained for us, and most of all for sending us pictures every day.
After being spoiled by Lala and Poppa, we were probably way more excited to see these two than they were to see us. Katie Wynn did immediately eat the tangerines we hand picked for her though.
Some quick pictures before dinner on Daddy's birthday!
So I think this post can easily be summed up like this:
- Palm Springs is ok.
- Cheesecake for breakfast is amazing.
- Time away from kids is good but we still missed them!