Monday, November 21, 2011

Meeting Meri... the San Francisco Treat

In September, my Dad was diagnosed with stage 2 kidney cancer. It was a miracle that they caught it when they did because it usually does not present symptoms. The surgeon felt confident that she could get it all with surgery and that he would be just fine! So in early November, we transferred our tickets from Miami (where we were going for my cousin's wedding) to San Francisco for my dad's surgery. 
On the plane, we were in the BACK row every time! I kind of enjoyed it. The kids REALLY enjoyed being so close to the bathrooms.
First stop after meeting Grandpa and Granny Bev... Bubba Gumps!!
Matt's favorite!! He loves boiled shrimp (pronounced bowled, not boy-eld). ;)
Since my Dad and Bev are moving back in a week (YAY!!) we figured this was our last time to San Fran for a while so we tried to hit a lot of the tourist-y things that we wanted to remember. Fisherman's wharf was one of those.
Friday we were at the hospital bright and early for Dad's surgery, which was performed by a robot! The kids did awesome for the 5+ hour surgery. (it was BLUE Friday, by the way). After he was out of surgery and in recovery, we decided to walk to McD's a mile or so away so we wouldn't have to pay $20 to get the car out of the parking garage. Well, they had told us not to go out around the hospital at night, but they didn't say not to go out in the middle of the day. I literally saw a drug deal go down, and we walked through some places that were slightly not so safe. I have NEVER seen Matt so scared. If it weren't so terrifying, it probably would have been comical. ;) We survived and we will laugh about it someday! Hahaha!
That night after my dad was in his room and zonked out, we went to MY favorite place... Cheesecake Factory in Union Square! That is the neatest place. I finally branched out and got something besides the Ultimate Red Velvet. It was totally worth every. single. carb. ;)
The next day, we got to go to CF again and meet the one and only... Meri!! I was beyond excited to meet her! She was just as real and positive and amazing in real life as she is on her blog. Her boys were quite amazing themselves, as was her hubby. :) We were so excited! It was so nice to get to meet with them and talk to them. Emma, who had expressed her dismay that they were all boys (gasp!) later said, "hey, they were actually kind of fun to play with!"
And guess what... we got to meet Lawton!!
We loved him that much too!

And FINALLY, by the time it was time to leave, Aiden loosened up a little and had some fun!
What an honor to meet Meri and her family. I can honestly say, as with Laura, it was an amazing experience to meet someone who you look to on your computer for support, guidance, tips, same-same and even a little glitter. ;) And then for them to be just as awesome in person, I just can't describe that. It was awesome though! Thanks to Meri and your family for an amazing lunch and letting us meet and get to hang out with you for a little while!
The next day, we checked on my Dad and then we headed WEST (like 5 blocks west) and hit Vista Del Mar. It was so pretty!
Flat Stanley thought it was pretty too!
We drove down a little further and found a more beachy beach, Ocean Beach. Here is Emma and her volcano.
Here is our attempt at our annual beach picture... Take 1...Emma get your dang bangs out of your eyes and stop making gang symbols!
Thank you, Now take 2, Aiden stand by your sister... she doesn't have cooties!
OMG, whatever. That'll work.
Then we finally made it to eat and Aiden was LOW. He was thinking I was crazy for trying to get him to eat sugar out of paper. "That's shooker?"
 And Matt HAD to get his Irish Coffee. He has LOVED Buena Vista Cafe since he worked evenings when Emma was born and would watch Samantha Brown on the Travel Channel. So he has a little crush on Samantha Brown and the Mustache Guy who makes the Irish Coffees, I think.
 Then we headed around the corner to Ghirardelli. YUM!
 We have a picture of Emma here in her stroller from several years ago. ;)
I kept saying look there are War Ships and it sounded weird but it wasn't completely weird but just a little off, but then Matt said they weren't called War Ships, how about Battle Ships and then I figured out I was thinking Worship and that's why it wasn't sounding too weird. How's that for some Swelly Brain thinking?! How's that for an interesting story. P.S. that is Alcatraz behind the "war ships". Is that so cool!?
 This was the neatest place ever!! It was a tea party place called Crown and Crumpet! I really wanted to have a tea party there. I know it was just the sign on the wall, but I really wanted to have a tea party with Laura there. ;) And my Nana and Aunt Mary would have LOVED it!! 
 Here we are getting to SMELL the best SMELL ever... at Boudin. I swear they somehow pump the smell directly from the ovens to the street!
 Next up... Aquarium of the Bay. It was pretty neat... Not Sea World, but very cool anyway.
 Nemo and Dory.
 Emma in her fish tank!
 Aiden petting the rey. So brave!
 There was a very neat Hawaiian exhibit at the aquarium. Very cool!

 And the main reason that we were there... I didn't take any pictures of Grandpa, but here was his hospital.

 This was the drill everytime we went in... race to the elevators to see who gets to hit the button! Yeah, Matt is racing too. I so love that he is such a big kiddo. ;)
 And finally... Never! I repeat... NEVER do this before you get on an airplane!!
 Or this will happen! True Story.
So we had a sucky reason to go to San Francisco, but my Dad is doing fantasticly and we got to fit in a lot of awesome meetings and sight seeing!


  1. Oh, Leigh!! I'm still sorry about your dad, and hope he's doing better.
    You had an AWESOME trip! The food, fun, and fellowship is amazing..I wanna go with you next time! : ) and meet Meri too!
    Your kids are the cutest. Mine don't like to stand together for pix either-I just tell them to get together and get it over with, or it'll take longer! (they are all old enough to appreciate the honesty now!)
    Love you girl!!! Happy Thanksgiving!

  2. This post is epic! It must have taken days to put together! Meeting your family was wonderful! My husband always feels awkward at these meetups, but he really got along with your husband! And the kids playing together was the cherry on top! Glad your family gets to be together more often!

    Great post. I was LOLing all over the place! Rice a Roni rocks! Thanks for putting me up there with such yumminess!