As I mentioned in my last post, we both took the Ebags Motherlode Jr backpacks as our carry on. They fit under the seat in front of me (which I did not expect) and I was even able to get my teeny purse mashed under there with it. I knew we would be roaming around a lot so I only brought a small cross body purse.
The packing cubes were SUPER handy! I felt like these really kept my items in check, organized and easy to locate. My feeling is if you are on the fence get a set and give it a go. I was also on the fence and I got a few sets of the Ikea ones just to try. I then bought a set of the Sharper Image ones for Paul but I ended up taking the really huge one (I mean it is GINOURMOUS) to put
all some of my fabric and sewing crap in.
Paul and I made it to California we had a pretty great time and those four days went by so fast it is a blur. We got to visit the San Diego Zoo. What an amazing zoo. We were really lucky and got to see a ton of the animals, most were out and active. While we were at the zoo I managed to stop at pretty much every little shop stand they had an buy all the little composite rubber animals I could find. I was thinking of all the different activities we could use them for. The zoo also had an amazing amount of great children’s books. I only grabbed one because we had just been to Barnes and Noble in the morning and had already bought 6 books. I can’t resist kids books and we want the girls to be readers.
For those of you in the military planning to visit the San Diego Zoo please know your active duty ID gets you in free and onto the bus tour etc. It will also get you a discount purchasing tickets for your friends and family members! That is such a great deal and makes the visit more affordable. You can get a Storipass and have pictures taken at a number of different locations throughout the park. We did buy a picture package that gave us the digital rights (AWESOME) so we could then post or print them if we wanted to. I believe it was 55.00. We had a hard time finding pictures both of us were in for our adoption dossier because I am usually taking the pictures.
Check out these amazing creations using recycled flip flops! I love this idea. They had different animals at each shop/stand in each area. They also had a selection of local wines, olive oils as well as gourmet chocolates. We did get a souvenir for our travel wall (two small animal tiles). I was a little stuck on the beaded flamingo but I finally decided I should just go with a wall item.
We apparently found the most popular BBQ joint in the area. We managed to eat there three times. In our defense.. the BBQ is amazing! The place is Phil’s BBQ and if you are in the area you can’t go wrong with either the Beefy Ribs or the Baby Back Ribs.
We were harassed by a HUGE waffle at the Waffle Spot. That is totally a Low Carber’s nightmare right there. This waffle was persistent.. I did resist however and ordered the Baja Omelet (I may or may not have licked the giant waffle once or twice). I was thinking this place is a little sketchy since it is The Waffle Spot in the morning and turns into the Amigo Spot in the evening but we were pleasantly surprised. The food was very good and the people were nice, plus it is really close by.
We visited Old Town and had a fantastic breakfast at El Patio de Old Town. I noticed very mixed reviews (depending on the site) about this place just now when I was looking for a web site to refer people to. We had a great experience and the food was very good, we watched the gal make fresh tortillas (actually the smell brought us in), everything was fresh and delicious. We both had the enchiladas. They were offering a breakfast buffet but I am very leery of buffets so this was a better choice.
While in Old Town we had a visit to the Whaley House Museum. If the name seems sort of familiar you may have seen it on a ghost/paranormal show. It is a lovely old home with an interesting history. Tickets were $6.00 and sold in the house next to the Whaley House, this also serves as the gift shop as well.
We found a pizza place and had gluten free pizza. This pizza had a nice thin crispy crust and was delicious! The place is called Project Pie. When I saw the name I was thinking Banana Cream not pizza, so glad I looked it up! We probably paid $25.00 for three personal sized gluten free pizzas. Let me just say this is more pizza for less $$ than the pizza we usually get.
I found a room at the Marriott with a kitchen. This is huge because who can continue to eat all meals out? Ok so maybe I could but I’m thinking the budget would be happier with less of that business. I made Chicken Soup and I think I will put a bunch into bags too for at least a couple meals every week while I am here. The kitchen is small but the fridge is full sized, there is also a microwave, dishwasher and cook top. To make this work we picked up a crock pot (no oven here) at Target.
The bedroom has a king sized bed and its a tight fit in there with the dresser, there is a sink space and a bathroom with tub/shower combo and toilet. Parking is a pain here and will run an extra 13.00 a night unless you are staying an entire month and in that case your parking is free says the gal at the front desk. This is a great bonus. The nickel and diming drives me nuts so I’m happy when that works out.
I made it across the boarder twice now and into Tijuana. I am taking part in a study and this has been pretty interesting. I got the results of my saliva test and it is shocking to say the least. The list of things they found boggles the mind. I will be interested to see what happens. I was able to meet a few other people there for different treatments (not part of the study), one woman was there with her son. The son had suffered an accidental gunshot to the head and was partially paralyzed on one side. After the first treatment he had he could open his hand (which has not been possible since the brain injury occurred). I am coming at a time when a lot of others will be there and I have said I will do my stuff in the lobby. Really its because I am nosey and want to visit with people and see why they are there and what results they have had. So far I’ve not met any other study participants (probably because most of them finished already, I was late or they are on a different schedule). My blood was sent to a specialty lab in Europe to be tested and I will be waiting to see those results too. I love this sort of thing.
I see a lot of folks coming to Tijuana for dental care. I am making a list of dentists to check out.
I have one last restaurant to comment on. I had plans to get out and get a haircut, find a fabric store etc but I felt a little yucky so I came back to the room and planted myself. I ordered dinner from Rays Mexican Restaurant using Eat 24. This is pretty inexpensive when I think of ordering Mexican food at home. Minimum delivery order is $25 an that is a TON of food. Seriously a ton. On the upside I have breakfast all set! The Tamale was sort of odd but delicious. I’ve never had veggies and potatoes in a tamale before, It was HUGE! I tried chicken enchiladas (I will eat that for breakfast) and a beef burrito which is HUGE and very good. This is not that craptastic burritos you usually get this doesn’t have the filler, it is pretty much all meat. Love it! That covers the trip.. I do have another update but I will write that separately.