Thanksgiving: Folsom and Sacramento
Before two weeks ago, I had never been out west. Jacob went to high school out in California and all of his sisters live there now, so we went to visit them for Thanksgiving. The week of the holiday we stayed with his oldest sister, Melissa, whom I had literally never met (outside of facebook) until we showed up at her door with our luggage.
Melissa has a daughter, Mia, who is only a few months older than Anna. They were fast friends! Anna loved all the new toys, especially the child-sized broom and the tea set.
We had a wonderful wonderful week with the Browns. Melissa’s husband, Ryan, is cool and chatty. We stayed up late talking and laughing, perhaps a little too late for our early rising charges, but it was fun. I’m so grateful for their kindness, hospitality, and yummy food.
Melissa and Mia were kind enough to show us around. I saw the bridge where every teenager used to jump off, including my crazy husband. We walked through historic Sutter Street, which was full of cute fun shops and tasty eateries.
They showed us some fun places up at Apple Hill, where we ate apple donuts and fudge, walked around a pond, and rode the playground toys. Our girls loved exploring together, holding hands, and chowing down on treats.
Jacob also spent a bit of time showing me around town. We drove by some of his old houses. I finally got to see the bush that grows so big it eats a tree. We went to a park that was near his brother’s elementary school. He pointed out Intel and his high school right near by. We drove around and around, and even stopped by the outlets to see his first place of employment. When we drove back to Melissa’s house after a full day of driving and exploring and what felt like hours of crossing town, I was surprised to find it only takes about 7 minutes to get from the edge of town with the farms and the hotel-sized houses on the hill to the other side of Folsom. What a fun place to be a teen, you could bike anywhere, and having your parent drop you off would only take a few minutes out of their day. It was completely foreign to me.
We did take a morning to walk through Old Sacramento, near the bright yellow bridge, and enjoyed the train museum. I have a special place in my heart for train museums but East Coast, you just don’t have stories to tell about trains like the West does.
This museum was full of bright shining restored train cars and engines. Some had wax people set up, others were just for investigating. It was so fun walking through them, and a replica of the trans-continental tunnel that was built. In Virginia, we just have coal cars.
After an adventurous lunch at Crepeville, we set off for Yosemite. It wasn’t thought out completely (the sun was supposed to set at about our arrival time) but we took off. We drove past all kinds of orchards and farms. They were all so beautiful. It was weird hearing Californians say they were happy to see green again, apparently our autumn is their spring in a way with the returning rains. Even with the chilly-for-California temperatures, there was lots growing.
Then we passed into foothills, dry, rocky, eroding hills full of cattle and (I imagine) cowboys. We made our turn around point Sonora, a cute little mountainous town with a sweet main street. We shopped a bit and wore Anna’s legs out up and down the hills. The views were lovely all through the area and we took them in. We passed a gorgeous lake on our alternate route home. We sure are blessed to be able to visit so many beautiful places and spend time with our family.