And now, the beginning of what will likely be about forty gazillion posts centered on our California Christmas adventures.
Lola opted to ride down with her grandparents, and I'm told was an absolute angel throughout the duration of the drive. She watched Shrek about four times and couldn't get enough of "kitty."
Reece and I arrived a day late, so our first real day in Carpinteria was Christmas Eve.
I joined my parents for a long run along the beach, which was fantastic. The boys headed to a tennis tournament with some friends of my brother and the rest of us decided to walk downtown to scope out the shops and restaurants that lined our temporary little home.
I suppose it ought to be mentioned that my brother served part of his mission in this little town and convinced us it was the most beautiful place in the world. We all fell in love almost immediately upon arrival.
Lola spent the majority of the stroll showing off for her Papa Mark.
I think it's fair to say that if she asked him to jump in a pool full of hot lava, he would.
The most precious gem of Carpinteria, aside from the beach, of course, is a candy shop that rivals Willy Wonka's freakin' chocolate factory.
I think I could have spent the entire 7 days inside its walls stuffing my face, but I'm fairly sure that attempt would have landed me in jail. Let's just say a good portion of my allotted Christmas money disappeared here.
Lola was thrilled with the spoils, especially since nana, papa, aunties and uncles took it upon themselves to make sure she received more sugar in one day that she had in her entire existence.
What do you know? We found a sign dedicated to the munchkin.
Apparently they've been anxiously awaiting her arrival to this very alley.
We ended our jaunt with lunch at a fantastic Thai restaurant.
Pad Thai is one of my endless weaknesses.
Lola dug the yellow curry.
And, of course, her nana.
Next up, Christmas Eve festivities in the beach house...