We had worried about the weather - we've never gone this time of year and the forecast said it was going to rain all week! Luckily it only rained on Sunday, and the rest of the week was actually pretty nice - a little cool some days, but nice. Also, during the winter they push a large berm of sand in front of all the houses, but it wasn't a big deal: the kids had fun sliding down it on boogie boards. I couldn't take the whole week off (year-end, you know) and ended up working a couple of days and logging in from the beach the others, but it was still nice just to be there. I enjoyed visiting the bird refuge at the salt marsh early in the mornings - by myself. In addition to the usual birds (like great and snowy egrets, blue herons, and all the various stilts and shore birds) there were a LOT of ducks (the usual mallards of course, but also: American widgeons, both blue and green wing teal, pintails, buffleheads, scaups, and even a ruddy duck - I had to get out a field guide to identify them all).
But mostly we just enjoyed playing on the sand, riding bikes around town, watching sunsets and the waves roll in from atop our lofty perch on the berm, and doing a whole lot of nothing. I can't wait to do it again.
Katie feeding the giraffes at the Santa Barbara zoo.
Maddie was a bit nervous about that big long tongue.
Claire, Kate, Haley, Maddie, and Addy watching the sunset.
Braiden making some furry friends on the beach.
Taylor riding a bike on the berm (which didn't work out so well).
Haley and Maddie playing ball.
The seal sanctuary from atop the bluffs.
Kate at a sycamore tree estimated to be about 250 years old!
Sunset on our last evening at the beach house... sigh!