Click on pictures to see a large version.
December 2008

Christmas in Arbuckle
Janine and Peter were snowed in and couldn't come, but the party went on.  I, Linda, Josh, BranDee and Deloris joined Leo and MaryLou in Arbuckle for the traditional Christmas dinner and gift exchange.  We gathered around the phone to call Willow in Virginia - then Janine in Indian Valley (Peter was working the snow  plow).  The gift exchange was fun with tea from Cost Plus a popular item.    

A winter Horseback ride
The sun was peeking through the clouds and the weather seemed only slightly frigid (about fifty degrees) so we headed for Mokelumne River Ranch.  We love the indoor arena but the levy road along the Mokelumne river was so beautiful with its green banks and lazy water that we were compelled to follow its wandering banks. Click HERE for a slide show with MANY pictures.   Video

Dave & Linda celebrate their 25th wedding anniversary at Pacific Grove, CA
December 9th, 2008   After much discussion we decided to take a short trip to  Monterey/Pacific Grove to celebrate our 25th wedding anniversary.  The  fog was hanging low in the valley as we left Elk Grove and headed south  on I-5.  Our first stop was at a truck stop about an hour out of town.   Casa de Fruta is a favorite lunch stop and it was eerily deserted on  this Tuesday morning.  Dave is pictured "driving" the engine in front of  the candy shop. 

We've often wondered about the mission at San Juan Bautista so we stopped for a quick walk around.  The church was well used even today but the part we liked best was their carriage barn.

We arrived at the Lover's Point Inn in Pacific Grove  around 2:00 p m.  After we checked in we broke out the bikes.  The ride  along the bike trail from Pacific Grove to Monterey is probably our  favorite.  There are lots of photo opportunities and the scenery is  world class.  Fisherman's Wharf in Monterey is a great place to explore.  shop and boat watch. There was a street market going on in Old Town and  ice skating on the plaza.

We decided to eat dinner at the 17th Street  Grille on Lighthouse Ave in Pacific Grove.  The Christmas decorations  were very lovely in Carmel-by-the-sea as was the window shopping.  The  library was still open and Linda had to visit.  What a great old  building, very friendly and inviting.

December 10th
  Our 25th wedding anniversary is today.  Since the Aquarium didn't open  until 10:00 am, we drove south to Asilomar to walk on the beach.  We  rode the bikes to the Aquarium so that we didn't have to worry about  parking.  It's about a ten minute ride from our hotel. 


We decided to  take a behind-the-scenes tour that included many interesting facts. The  facility draws in sea water through the old fish hoppers that the  sardine fishermen used to deliver fish to the canneries.  These pipes  are cleaned by flushing them with fresh water to kill the salt water  organisms that cling to the walls and by sending a "pig" through at high  pressure.  The pigs look like big bullets.  We got to feed krill to the  denizens of the kelp tank and meet an albatross on her was to her daily  swimming session.


The lovely jellies were very relaxing to watch as  were the giant tanks with their schools of gleaming silver fish flashing  past.  We ate lunch at the cafe and continued to roam the beautifully  designed facility checking out the river otters and penguins. 


We headed  back to the hotel for a short rest and returned to Cannery Row in the  car to choose a spot for our anniversary dinner.  The Fish Hopper won  and we had a lovely time at our waterfront/fireside table enjoying the  seafood meal.


December 11th   We checked out of the Inn and had breakfast at the Victorian House up  the hill.  A last stop at the wharves for boat watching rounded our our  trip.  On the commercial wharf we watched several boxes of what looked  like red snapper being dumped into the bay.  The pelicans and gulls were  having a feast but we wondered if there couldn't have been a better use  for those fish. 


Back tracking home, we stopped at Casa de Fruta but  neither of us were hungry for lunch so we bought snacks and headed out.   We stopped by the stable to see the horses on our way home.

For a slide show of all the pictures click here.  Then click on "slide show" in the upper right.

Click on pictures to see a large version.
December 2008
Creative Commons License     This website is created and maintained by Dave Howe (  )  using KompoZer, an open source web editor.  Hosted at HostGator.