Happy Birthday to Me.

Birthday rubber duckies.

Our journey began by car headed on the 750 mile drive.

Hank is pretty happy with a road trip.

Hank is pretty excited, although you can't tell from this picture...he's pretty comfortable.

Later in the week Hank would have to share the backseat.

Our first stop on our road trip was Mt Shasta, CA.

Mt Shasta.

After arriving at the house on Thursday morning and getting all set-up, we decided to make Muir Woods our first outing on Friday.

My sister Kathy brought her bear Trip and Todd decided to be silly.

It was a great day for a visit to Muir Woods.

Muir Woods National Monument is a unit of the National Park Service that protects 554 acres, of which 240 acres are old growth Coast Redwood forests, one of a few such stands remaining in the San Francisco Bay Area.

After a visit to Muir Woods we decided to head into Sausalito for lunch.

Ranked as one of the top 20 destinations in the country, visitors and residents alike agree that Sausalito’s scenic waterfront and panoramic views, small town charm and Mediterranean character make it a truly enchanting place to live, work or play. Sausalito’s world class dining, artists and galleries, boutiques and bohemian spirit have long attracted sophisticated international travelers and continue to garner recognition for the city as one of the best small towns in which to live.

Our next day was the official birth-Day.

With lots of birthday decorations.

We started each day with breakfast preparations for 23 people - 2 coffee makers running - and it was a good thing it was a good sized kitchen.

Two VERY special people.

As I said before, what an honor to have so many poeple come for this celebration!

Lots of room for eating, which tends to be what happens a lot when we all get together.

My friend Kit made her famous Almond Pastry.

Hank seemed to make himself right at home.

We were very blessed to have great weather to enjoy the outdoor space together as well.

The happy couple.

Father and son.


The party crowd.

Woohoo...who knew there would be gifts too?

And if there's gifts, you have to open them, right?

Grandparents and Hank.

Lots of time spent around the table.

And even more in the kitchen - this picture is of my two nieces that came, Nacolle and Melissa.

Todd's Mom, my Mom, Dad and Kit.

Todd brought chinese laterns to set-off for my birthday.

1 for every decade.

These things are so cool. It takes a while to get the candle lit and filled with hot air...

it takes some patience.

and we learned even moreso in warmer weather it takes longer to get enought hot air to give them any lift...

But once they get started, it is awesome to watch them take off.

And very cool that once they took off everyone began singing Happy Birthday!

Cool, huh?



Mom and son.

A Happy Hank.

More Happy Hank.

Hey, its Todd and Trip again.

Saturday we had two vans to carry us all thru the Delta of Sacramento.

This was the main stop on the Delta trip - The Old Sugar Mill is home to a unique community of ten California wineries.

The Old Sugar Mill is located in Clarksburg.

It was a fun stop with various wine rooms with a chance to try whites, reds, ports and even oils and vinegars from the area.

Sunday was our river tour on the Sacramento River.

The New York contingent - Kit and Dennis.

It turned out to be a beautiful day and a fun river outing.

It began in Old Sacramento past the Delta King, the I Street Bridge, the Tower Bridge, and the Air Force Docks.

Old Sacramento is a charming part of town with cobblestone streets. Since the 1960s it has been restored and developed as a significant tourist attraction

Old Sacramento with Todd, my parents, Kit and Dennis.

Cute stores, charming restaurants and even this statue for the Pony Express.

The Pony Express was a mail service delivering messages, newspapers, mail, and small packages from St. Joseph, Missouri to Sacramento by horseback, using a series of relay stations. During its 18 months of operation, it reduced the time for messages to travel between the Atlantic and Pacific coasts to about 10 days. From April 3, 1860, to October 1861, it became the West's most direct means of east–west communication before the telegraph was established and was vital for tying the new state of California with the rest of the country.

Old Sacramento is also the location of the California State Railroad Museum, interpreting the role of the "iron horse" in connecting California to the rest of the nation.

The museum features 21 restored locomotives and railroad cars, some dating back to 1862.

Santa Fe 347C - Operational, an EMD F7 built in 1949.

It was a really cool place and beautifully displayed and run.

Even an awesome toy train display.

Another day we took a trip to Lake Tahoe.

A beautiful day to visit Lake Tahoe. The views were great - here's a great shot of Todd and Big Al.

Great view and cool selfie of Todd and I.

More of the happy couple.

And then there's Hank.

Larry and Alana.

Kit came from NY to spend the week with us.

At a surface elevation of 6,225 ft, Lake Tahoe is the largest alpine lake in North America. Its depth is 1,645 ft, making it the deepest in the United States after Crater Lake (1,945 ft).

Additionally, Lake Tahoe is the sixth largest lake by volume in the United States at 122,160,280 acre·ft, behind the five Great Lakes.

Welcome to Oregon - headed toward home with a detour to see Crater Lake.

Cool view of Mt Shasta on route.

Crater Lake is so beautiful, formed in a volcanic crater!

Crater Lake National Park is located in southern Oregon. Established in 1902, Crater Lake National Park is the fifth oldest national park in the United States and the only one in the state of Oregon.

Another selfie of us - this time at Crater Lake.

And a selfie of Hank too.


We took the hike down to the lake shore - this is the only accessible spot to Crater Lakes shore.

The lake is 1,943 feet deep at its deepest point, which makes it the deepest lake in the United States, the second deepest in North America and the ninth deepest in the world.

Crater Lake has no streams flowing into or out of it. All water that enters the lake is eventually lost from evaporation or subsurface seepage.


The lake's water commonly has a striking blue hue, and the lake is re-filled entirely from direct precipitation in the form of snow and rain.