San Diego activities

San Diego has a host of special activities that my family looks forward to every year although many of them may be curtailed this summer.

 

My family growing up would spend a month in San Diego every summer. My grandmother started this tradition and my mother continued. Our house would be packed with visiting friends, family, and maybe a boyfriend or two. My husband being one of those visiting boyfriends loves this tradition as much or possibly more than I do at this point. He is a creature of habit and has his favorite haunts and activities when we go there. Unfortunately, this year most of those favorite places will be closed due to the never-ceasing Corona Virus.

Were this a different year we would be enjoying the following activities.

My mother is also a creature of habit. Every year she insists on making the seven-hour drive through the desert from Arizona to San Diego. One reason for this is to stop at the Wisteria Candy Cottage located in the small town of Boulevard, California. The tiny cottage sits off a country road selling delicious chocolates among other candy. Hopefully they are open for business when she makes the journey this year or else she will be out of sorts.

The San Diego Zoo always amazes.

A peacock family strolls along the walkways.

A peacock family strolls along the walkways.

The San Diego Zoo is, in our opinion, the best zoo in the world. We go at least once a summer. There is endless inspiration there found in the beautifully patterned coats of the animals. Likewise in the plantings. There are large exotic cacti and many flowering plants all carefully labeled.

No fabric can compare with the real animal pattern.

A snake design pressed into a concrete walkway.

Another fabulous cat with his gorgeous coat.

Anteaters are such an unusual animal.

Keeping to the theme, are these zoo jeeps.

A spectacular cactus towers over one of the animal cages.

Madagascan Octotillo, one of my favorites.

Madagascan Octotillo, one of my favorites.

Love their labeling for identifying their exotic plants.

La Jolla is a favorite spot for dining, seal spotting, admiring houses, and finding books.

La Jolla is full of Spanish-style charm. The library is one of my favorite buildings.

The color combination sen on the fantastic windows appears to have come from the landscaping.

The color combinations on the fantastic windows appears to have come from the landscaping.

Charming houses around town, currently for sale.

Charming houses around town, currently for sale.

Warwick’s, the oldest family-owned bookstore in the states, followed by lunch at Burger Lounge will be our first stops this year.

Every year Bazaar del Mundo hosts a Latin Festival where different vendors bring their folk art, clothing, and jewelry to sell. There is also a taco stand, agua frescas, and music. We never miss this event. It is the girls’ morning out for a fun shopping experience.

I have contemplated buying this large devil to go with my large skeleton. My kids are not fans, but I love it. Reminds me of Frida Kahlo’s papier-mâché figures around her home.

One of our favorite restaurants is Sushi Ota. It doesn’t look like much residing in a strip mall near a few car dealerships, but it is the best sushi I have had. It is always packed with people, some coming in from out of town for the fresh fish.

While there I will do a bit of work visiting my favorite tile artist. A new project, on an old home, needs a spruced-up fireplace. Tile magic happens here. It is always a treat to visit and pull out fabulous tile after fabulous tile to create something special.

Just a sampling of some of the beautiful pieces. Each tile turns out a bit differently. Nothing machine made, just handmade beauty. Almost every house for sale right now in Winter Park looks exactly like the next. A touch of an artist’s hand adds so much.

At least no one can prohibit the best things about San Diego. That being the salt air, the sound of the waves crashing, the gorgeous sunsets, and the cool breezes much welcomed coming from hot humid Florida. Until next time beautiful California when we meet again under better circumstances.

Casa V Interiors can bring California beauty to your home wherever it may be.

California summer

California summer means surfing, sunsets, margaritas, tacos, skateboarding, rollerskating, hot sand, and the cold Pacific.

 

At least to me. Many think lobster rolls, sea glass, ferries, and clam bakes. It would be much easier to drive up the East coast for summer vacation. While that must be wonderful to many, summer will never be Cape Cod, Nantucket, or Maine to me. The West Coast always beckons. Summer just doesn’t feel complete unless it is a California summer. The Mexican influence and Spanish architecture set the perfect backdrop for our beloved activities.

The images below depict the perfect California summer as they appear in my mind.

A surfer in Montecito. (Photo: C Magazine)

A surfer in Montecito. (Photo: C Magazine)

Serape bathrobes.

Serape bathrobes.

The first thing to love about a California summer is the Spanish architecture.

Richard Hallberg's Montecito home. (Photo: Max Kim-Bee)

Richard Hallberg’s Montecito home. (Photo: Max Kim-Bee)

My dream house could be found in just about any California town. It would have old tile floors, wooden beamed ceilings, and white plaster walls. Charming windows and french doors allow cool winds to blow through the house.

House designed by Lutah Maria Riggs. Now owned by Richard Hallberg. (Photo: Art Design and Architecture Museum)

House designed by Lutah Maria Riggs. Now owned by Richard Hallberg. (Photo: Art Design and Architecture Museum)

Richard Hallberg's Montecito home. (Photo: Max Kim-Bee)

Richard Hallberg’s Montecito home. (Photo: Max Kim-Bee)

Hardware detail from Richard Hallberg's house. (Photo: Max Kim-Bee)

Hardware detail from Richard Hallberg’s house. (Photo: Max Kim-Bee)

Side entrance to Casa del Herrero by George Washington Smith, Montecito. (Photo: C magazine)

Side entrance to Casa del Herrero by George Washington Smith, Montecito. (Photo: C magazine)

The second is that everything grows in California.

Pelargoniums hate the Florida humidity. Everything grows beautifully in California.

Pelargoniums hate the Florida humidity. Everything grows beautifully in California.

The home of a fabulously creative man, Encinitas.

The home of a fabulously creative man, Encinitas.

Admiring the view from La Valencia, La Jolla.

Admiring the view from La Valencia, La Jolla.

Natural materials always seem right in California. (Photo: Pinterest)

Natural materials always seem right in California. (Photo: Pinterest)

Mary Queen of the Sea, Catholic Church, La Jolla.

Mary Queen of the Sea, Catholic Church, La Jolla.

White walls, saltillo floors, and a dutch door make a perfect kitchen. (Photo: Pinterest)

White walls, saltillo floors, and a dutch door make a perfect kitchen. (Photo: Pinterest)

Most significant, however, is the natural beauty that recharges the soul.

The morning's bounty from a few years ago. I love the brown and white striped ones the most.

The morning’s bounty from a few years ago. I love the brown and white striped ones the most.

(Photo: Slabs of the Sunburnt West)

(Photo: Slabs of the Sunburnt West)

Mornings are overcast until eleven or so when the sun burns off the clouds.

Mornings are overcast until eleven or so when the sun burns off the clouds.

Perfect end to another amazing California beach day.

The perfect end to another amazing California beach day.

Casa V Interiors can bring California beauty to your home.