Sunday, May 18, 2008

Celebrating 21 years...

If you've been following the blog recently, you know we've had some celebrations going on around here! On Friday, we celebrated our 21st wedding anniversary (glad you liked the 80's wedding pic), and then on Saturday, we celebrated Rich's birthday. Rich took the day off work Friday and we took off sans children for a little day getaway. (Saturday, we let the kids in on the fun.) Here are a few photos from Friday and I'll cover Saturday later.

We started this sunny and warm day with breakfast out at Marston's in Pasadena

Had a cute little table on the porch...

I dined on corn flake-encrusted french toast and bacon...

...while Rich had this great omelette and killer potatoes

After breakfast, we headed over to The Americana in Glendale. It just opened last week, and is like the Grove in L.A. (same developer). It takes up 4 city blocks and has been quite some time in the making. It's quite the place- I recommend a visit!

Great dancing water feature at the 2-acre "park"

Aerial view from parking structure

Open air "Concierge" area includes a pianist and marble floors

One of the many places to eat here- a 50's diner (Glendale is the "jewel city")

They even have a trolley that comes down these tracks

The place has a great retro feel!

Browsing some of the shops...

Bare Escentuals -one of my favorites! Had to stop in and get a little something for Emma.

This crystal chandelier is suspended over the street!

After a fun stroll around there, we grabbed a refreshing iced tea at Coffee Bean and headed over to Pasadena for our 2:00 tour of The Gamble House. The Gamble House is an historical landmark, and is the 100 year-old former summer home of the Gamble family (Proctor & Gamble). The house is a stunning example of the Arts and Crafts style and was designed by Greene & Greene. The house has been lovingly restored and preserved and includes much of the original furnishings. The tour included a docent leading us through the home room by room and explaining the history behind the home, furnishings, and Arts and Crafts era. The house is absolutely beautiful and I found the tour to be extremely fascinating! We were not allowed to take pictures inside, but here are a few shots of the exterior. There are interior pictures on the website - if you are interested just click the Gamble House link above.

The home used to be on 10 acres, but now it's about 2. The Rose Bowl is behind the house a few miles away.

Beautiful front doors - all the woodwork on the house was exquisite

The pond out back

Even the brickwork was a work of art!

We weren't quite sure what we would do for dinner, but Rich suggested we head down to Malibu for some seafood. The weather was scorching hot so it sounded like a great idea. We had a scenic(and traffic free) drive over Las Virgines Road. We called for reservations at Gladstone's and were able to get right in. Gladstone's is a fixture on PCH, known for its fresh fish and casual beach atmosphere. After enjoying some delicious seafood, we sat on the beach for about an hour, just enjoying the perfect weather.

Gladstone's - right on Will Rogers beach

The decor hasn't been changed in years, but it's great

Did I mention that my husband was class comedian in high school?
This was his idea - to frame a bird sitting outside our table's window with his hands.

Just enjoying the beautiful beach

Still having fun after all these years!

As we traveled home, we decided to take a leisurely drive down Ventura Boulevard, rather than take the 101. As we were driving, I remembered a place we went to once or twice, called Cafe 50's, and asked Rich if he remembered going there many years ago (before kids). He did, and actually remembered its location. We drove down Van Nuys Blvd. to see if it was still there and sure enough it was. Rich asked if I wanted to get a chocolate shake and so we topped off our evening with a cool and refreshing dessert. As we left, we asked the guy how long the restaurant had been there. He answered, "21 years," which was precisely how many years we had been married to that day.

50's diners were all the rage around the time we got married

Bright and colorful candy

Chocolate shakes for two...


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