June 7, 2010

California Love - Wedding and Sightseeing in California

Last week the hubsie and I went on our first big vacation ever. I say big cause it was our first time on a plane...yes both of us. I realize this makes us freaks in the flying world, but now it's over with! We flew into San Francisco for my brother's wedding. It was beautiful and it was great family time!! We were the last ones to arrive in California, due to a flight cancellation and whatever, but I felt like I was almost being reunited with my whole family because everyone was already there. I felt like I was almost coming home, that my family was there and they werewaiting for us...it was a nice feeling. And it was also great to be on my brother's turf. He has lived out of state for, I think, 7 years, and this was my first trip out to see him.

I already did a post on all the food, so I won't be talking about that in this post, although all the food we had was amazing! My brother, Jim, is that "last" one of us 4 kids to get married. I don't know if I can mention why last is in quotes, so I won't. But anyway, so we flew out to Oakland for his wedding and it was beautiful. They had their ceremony at St. Mary's College. Joan, my new sister-in-law is employed there as the Director of Delphine Intercultural Center and my brother just graduated the week before the wedding with his Masters!! So proud!

So, this campus is gorgeous! This is the chapel where they got married...*gasp* to die for right?!? I also have to say I love all the homes there in California. I love the starch white stucco and the smooth masonry. It is just beautiful. I think I just love all the architecture of California. Very clean and beautiful. Everything around this campus seemed to be bright, brilliant white with the green scenery and bright blue skies. It was quite breathtaking actually.

The ceremony was a Catholic mass with Filipino traditions tied in. They had "sponsors" who contribute to special parts of the ceremony, such as the unity candle, wedding coins and veil and cord traditions, which they all had. I did a reading during the ceremony, along with a call and response prayer. My other 2 brothers, Chuck and Ken, were groomsmen and played the processional, entrance of the bride, and recessional song (Here Comes the Sun and Here, There and Everywhere - The Beatles, and You and Me DMB, respectfully.)

Jim and Joan seeing each other for the first time before the ceremony

We took a Street Car to the ceremony from the hotel

Getting pictures done before the ceremony
Me, Chuck, Jim, Mom, Dad and Ken

Hubsie and I before boarding the Street Car

Reception at Soda Activity Center - St. Mary's College

The reception was also on campus at the Soda Activity Center. It was beautiful. They did a theme of movies and books, and more specifically movies that were made from books. All the music during dinner was from movie soundtracks, it was great little detail. We sat at the Godfather table.

As I said in the California Noms post they did two tables of food. One Filipino and one Italian. Joan put together a slide show of how her and Jim met and how their relationship unfolded. It was great and I got teary-eyed. It was a great night. We danced the night away and then returned back to the hotel on the Street Car.

The next day we went sightseeing all over San Francisco!! I was so excited...but I really didn't feel good that day. There was no way I was gonna sit back and be like "Oh I don't feel good, let's not go around San Fran." I would rather go sightseeing and risk throwing up then sitting in my brother's apartment being a poop. So off we went!! First order of business: Golden Gate Bridge!

The Golden Gate Bridge from Marin Headlands

Hubsie and I at Marin Headlands with
The Golden Gate Bridge in background

Driving over the Golden Gate Bridge!
Hubsie put camera out the window and got lucky with this shot!

We went to Sausalito for dinner because the traffic going back to San Francisco over the bridge was ridiculous. Sausalito is a great little harbor town. It was beautiful, and right on the Bay.

Driving to Sausalito - A City on the Bay

After dinner we went over to Lombard St. Lombard St. is known as the most winding, or crookedest street in the world. The street was far to steep for cars to be able to climb, let alone people I would say, so it was giving 8 curves going all the way down, it's quite beautiful and just really interesting. I got a picture of it at night, but it didn't come out very well.

We also ventured to Fisherman's Wharf and saw the sea lions! We took a really funny video, because it was dark you can't see anything but you just hear all the sea lions barking! It's so cute! The sea lions were celebrating 20 years of making their home at Pier 39. They are not capitive there, they just showed up one day and decided they wanted to stay. So fun! We also went through Chinatown and North Beach, which is pretty much San Fran's Little Italy.

Cool Building while driving through Downtown San Francisco

We had such an amazing time. It was nice to come back home, but then we realized how quickly our vacation ended. We have a lot of things we can check off our bucket list, if we actually had one.

1. First Flight - getting on a plane
2. California - Visiting Jim
3. Lombard St.
4. Golden Gate Bridge
5. California Food!
6. Seeing the Pacific Ocean!
7. Sea lions at Pier 39
And so much more!

Now I can't wait to go on another fun trip! We are looking to going our honeymoon finally, or at least a trip to Seattle like we wanted to do. We are hoping to go for our 1 year anniversary! It's coming up in September...maybe I should look into flight deals! :)

Happy Vacationing!