One night we met Meredith, Rianna, and Barney at Mikey's Pizza where we enjoyed time catching up.
|Meredith showing off her new additions to her shot glass collection|
|Rianna liked the iguana pencil we brought back from St. Thomas|
|Breaking in Mer's new shot glasses!|
|Catching up with friends is the best!|
One things we really love when visiting California is the chance to go to service at Mariner's Church. Church is the one thing we really miss in Pennsylvania (and on the ship for that matter!). We just haven't been able to find a speaking pastor to whom we connect like we do with Kenton.
One Sunday after church we met Steve, Nalaina and Zaida at the Orange County Great Park for an afternoon of sunshine and strolling through the Farmer's Market. We really enjoyed seeing the park and will look forward to visiting it as it grows over the years.
|Zaida says that this is the GIRLS Castle and there are no boys allowed!|
|You can't beat California fruits and veggies!|
|Someone was getting ready for an afternoon nap.|
We love spending time with the Harper Family. Kelly met Steve when she worked at Mariner's several years ago and when Zaida was born she spent a lot of time baby-sitting for her favorite "Peanut." It has been nice growing our friendship with Steve & Nalaina and we wish we could live closer.
If you know the Fancher Family, then you know that Donna especially loves dogs. Ever since they got their first Golden Retriever puppy in 1984, Donna has celebrated Dog Birthdays with all the fun and merriment of People Birthdays. Since Meeka and Harbor were both born in late April, we celebrated them with treats from the Dog Bakery (no, I'm not kidding) and presents that they get to open themselves. They seem to enjoy the treats and toys even if they have no idea why they're getting them.
|Happy Birthday Puppies!|
Before we moved to Pennsylvania, Ron had regularly MC'ed at the Etc. Stage for the Los Angeles Times Festival of Books. Once we moved, he passed the baton to Curtis Andersn (a friend that Kelly knew as a child and Ron met before meeting Kelly at Disney). This year Curtis was going to be out of town for the Festival which just happened to be occurring during our visit to California, and so Ron was able to fill in for him.
|Ron introducing the first group of the weekend.|
|2011 Festival of Books|
Kelly, being an avid reader, loves the Festival of Books and enjoys these weekends tremendously. This year, she found the reading room in the Doheny Memorial Library on USC's campus and curled up in a chair near a window overlooking the bustle of the festival and read A Tree Grows In Brooklyn which she has never read before and is thinking might end up being a new all time favorite.
Ron's Dad came down on Saturday and got to spend just a little time catching up. Since we're in the great limbo of "where are we going next and how long are we here?" we haven't been able to travel around to visit Ron's family yet. Ron's Dad got to enjoy an adventure courtesy of the Los Angeles Metro system which decided to close routes and make things a little more hectic than usual.
Kelly also spent time with Megan Galligan and her boyfriend Richard Lorenz on Sunday when the two UCLA students made their way to the enemy territory of USC just to visit us. They spent some time wandering the book fair and then we all went to El Cholo for some yummy Mexican food.
The previous day, Kelly's friend Jen Wade came to visit her at the festival and they were both really excited to see Jillian Michaels speak. Jen watches The Biggest Loser and while Kelly hasn't seen much of that show, she enjoys Jillian's workout videos and the show Losing It that Jillian hosted a few years back.
|Jen with Jillian in the background|
|The interviewer, Jillian's mom who was answering a therapy based question (she's a clinician), and Jillian|
Also on Saturday, a flash mob appeared in the USC courtyard near Ron's stage. It wasn't a very good one and we were a little disappointed with the boring choreography and small group that joined in... c'mon people! This is LA. If you're going to flash mob, you have to go big!
|The boring flash mob|
One of the highlights of our time in LA was a stop at Phillippe's for French Dips (double dipped please) with hot mustard (at least for Kelly), coleslaw, and custard. So good! You just can't beat this iconic Los Angeles establishment... even if it is overcrowded now since all the television publicity it has received.
Now, we are waiting on a few more details to fall into place and we'll be off to our next destination. We'll keep you posted on what's next!