Don’t Even Know…

It’s Saturday afternoon as I write this. Just poured a glass of white wine after doing a bunch of chores. Listening to Kate Bush. Logan is watching Wreck It Ralph. Bella is snoring on the couch. Michael ran to the store. First the bad news.

Michael got laid off Friday morning. I guess in a way we should have seen it coming since he was a contractor and lots of people are being laid off, and lots of companies are freaking out right now. But it was still awful. We are crossing our fingers it’s temporary and he’ll be back with his same company/team when this is all over with. His team was unaware of the plan to lay him off. It sounded like an HR decision. It’s still devastating and upsetting and stressful.

Logan’s birthday party was supposed to be Saturday but we cancelled that, obviously, so we decided to go for a little drive Saturday and then hike and have a picnic as a distraction for everything and it helped.

We had breakfast and did a few things then packed the car and drove out toward the beach to LL Stub Stewart Park. It’s a great place, that we’ve gone a bunch of times for hikes and day trips.

I picked it because it was about an hour drive from our house. It got us out of our house, out of the neighborhood, and I figured that with the social distancing it would be an ok place to go to. The park is huge. And I assumed most people would go to local Portland places (like Forest Park) or out in the Gorge to go hiking. (I was sort of right.)

There was still a fair amount of people at Stub Stewart but everyone was doing a good job of distancing themselves from each other. Families stayed together and away from other people. We went for a hike in the forest and didn’t see any other hikers (but did see a few mountain bikers out there–like two pairs).We were there early enough to miss the crowd apparently. I was honestly surprised at how many people were there after we left…

It was so empty we even took Bella off leash! (And you know how I feel about off leash dogs!) She did great. We were out in the woods alone.

It was a little on the chilly side, since it was kind of towards the beach. But we warmed up with our hike. The park was free. The bathrooms were open and had soap and toilet paper and smelled like bleach, so they were cleaning. That was nice. I still used Clorox wipes after using the bathrooms.

It was really good to get out of house after working from home for 5 days, not going to the gym, not going swimming, not seeing friends or family, cancelling Logan’s birthday party, and Michael’s bad news. We all needed a reset. Fresh air, hiking, getting a change of scenery was good for our mental health!

Then we had a picnic lunch on a table in the parking lot. The picnic tables were all spaced out really far from each other, so that was good. There were more people at the park by this time and I saw a lot of people on the other trail (not the one we did), so it was kind of defeating the social distancing thing with that many people. SIGH. This was when we packed up quick and left.

It was a pretty good day, despite everything. I was glad we got out, I was glad there were no people near us. I was glad we weren’t potentially spreading anything or catching anything. We just got a hike in, cleared our heads, and went home.

We came home, unpacked, I took a long hot bath and read a book and made huli huli chicken and roasted vegetables for dinner. It’s a super stressful time and it’s hard not to resort to old patterns dealing with stress. But trying.

QUESTION: HOW ARE YOU!?!?

Los Angeles Hiking

On Saturday I dragged Michael out of bed 😉 and we drove to Pacific Palisades to go for a hike in Will Rogers State Park. It’s a really big place! And it was nice. We did the Inspiration Trail. It was fairly easy, but connected to other trails you could do to make it longer.

It was about 65 degrees but felt warmer in the sunshine. It felt SO nice after being back in cold, rainy Portland for two weeks after paradise. 🙂

The trail looped around a big hill and at the top there were really nice views.

There were also stables, so we saw horses. And trail runners, mountain bikers and people walking their dogs. It was a popular place.

It was a really nice workout. After that we drove to Pacific Palisades for lunch. It was a really cute place! Lots of cute little restaurants and shops. I would like to explore that area some more, too. We went to lunch at Cafe Vida, which was very popular. The place was packed the entire time and had a long wait. But it was worth it.

I got the mahi mahi grilled fish tacos topped with cabbage slaw made with yogurt and a mild sauce. It came with black beans and rice. It was SO SO delicious! Michael got a chicken and veggie bowl and he loved it, too.

I definitely recommend this place and would try and go back next time I’m there. The food felt really healthy. It wasn’t spicy, which was kind of a bummer because I like spicy fish tacos, but it was still delicious.

Saturday night we went out to dinner at Paul Martin’s in Manhattan Beach. Another great place I highly recommend! Classy joint, great food, good service. Reasonable prices compared to a lot of LA options! Also, Manhattan Beach is super cute, and parking was easy at the restaurant, so definitely check it out. The place filled up fast, too!

I got a glass of Sauvignon Blanc (delicious wine list!) and they brought freshly baked bread (the butter was awesome). I got the Wedge Salad (very very good):

And the French Onion soup:

Michael got the steak cobb salad and he said it was one of the best he’d had.

Then we splurged and shared a piece of chocolate cheesecake for dessert. Everything was so good! Definitely ate too much. Worth it.

We had an early night because we had to get up at 4:45 to get to LAX for our flight home. The early morning hour turned out to be a good time for LAX and everything went super easy. We even saw Jason Momoa at the airport!

The flight home was turbulent (yuck) but we landed and got to see Logan! I’d missed him SO much! I admit, I got a little homesick for my baby. This was the longest we’d ever been away from him (4 days) and the first time we were in another state without him. It was very weird for me. I couldn’t stop giving him kisses when I saw him!

It was a good trip. Driving in LA is nuts and I felt like our trip was spent just driving places. I didn’t get to do all the things I’d wanted to do (partly because of how long everything took to drive to) but it’s on my list for our next visit (The Getty Villa, The Natural History Museum, Runyon Canyon).

It is so good to be home. Michael and I are both “over” being on vacation though! Traveling is tiring. (Not complaining, it was all amazing, but dang we are tired!)