If you didn’t already read my post about how to road trip with a baby, I suggest you go back and do so – especially if you have a baby and are planning to travel with them soon. For the first leg of our adventure – aptly named Colby’s Excellent Adventure – we drove from our home in Portland, OR to my parent’s house in Northern CA where we would home base for a couple of days before making our way to San Francisco for a wedding.
First stop: Ashland, Oregon
We left Portland late on a Friday afternoon with the car packed to the brim and with Abbie (our dog), Colby (our five month old son), and me all crammed into the backseat of our Hyundai Sonata. Our first stop en route to California was Ashland, OR – basically the perfect halfway point for our drive – just about 5 hours away.
We sang songs, played games, and then eventually Colby even slept for a couple of hours, allowing me to get some work done and Casey to zone out to podcasts.
The drive felt almost too easy (famous last words…) and everyone was in good spirits. As we got close to Ashland, we decided our first stop would be a park to let Abbie out to run and play and change a very stinky, poopy diaper (in fact, it was a full outfit change kind of situation).
The weather was absolutely perfect in Ashland so we stayed and lingered at the park for awhile, just enjoying some time out of the car in the sunshine.
After Abbie was good and tired and Colby was clean, we decided to do a quick trip to the Market of Choice in Ashland. It’s my favorite place to pick up groceries while in Ashland – mainly because they have the best cider collection ever! We grabbed food for dinner, breakfast the next morning, and of course some ciders to try. This one from Tumalo was my very favorite – farmhouse rasberry – super tangy, and the perfect amount of carbonation.
We eventually made our way to our hotel – the Ashland Hills Hotel & Suites – and realized as we pulled in that it was the first hotel that Abbie ever stayed in when she was just 8 weeks old.
The last time we stayed was so brief that I hadn’t really had a chance to walk around and explore; I never got to see just how cute this place truly is. It’s not only cute but it’s also really nice – great rooms, great customer service, dog friendly, and full of amenities (tennis courts, pool, conference rooms, cafe, little porches, and more!). It’s the perfect place to stay in Ashland if you’re traveling with family or dogs.
Colby really enjoyed the spacious bathtubs… 🙂 I really enjoyed the snuggle time.
The next morning everyone was up early (of course) so I decided to take Abbie for a run before getting back in the car. We headed out to the White Rabbit Trailhead as it seemed like the closest and best option.
And it ended up being perfect. We were able to get a great (and relatively quick) workout…because, all. the. hills.
After the run, we ate a quick breakfast – um all I have to say is, Coconut, Almond Chocolate Noosa Mates, FTW …
And then we loaded up the car and made our way to grab coffee at my favorite Ashland roaster, Case Coffee Roasters.
Once we had coffee in hand, an exercised and happy dog, and a fed and changed baby, we were off on our way to California. We made a few stops on the way to stretch our legs, change the baby and let Abbie pee, but by far the most memorable stop was in Corning, CA.
For over 5 years now (sometime before we were married), we’ve had a running debate about the contents of a billboard advertising The Olive Pit on I-5 S as you approach Corning. On the bottom, it says … “olive mikshakes…..” Casey decided they must serve olive milkshakes. I always said that was too gross and it likely just meant olives, milkshakes, etc. Since we needed to let the dog and cranky baby out, we decided it was time to actually stop and settle the debate.
The problem is that we’re still not entirely sure who’s right. They serve an assortment of olive oil milkshakes but no straight up olive milkshakes. Does it count? I’m still not convinced….
It was too hot to leave Abbie in the car so we decided to walk across the street (ahem, busy highway) so that Casey could grab some lunch from the Mexican food truck, Johnny Boy’s Tacos (I had some food in the car already) which he said was very good.
Second stop: Rocklin, CA
Anytime we’re in Rocklin in the summer months, there is plenty of pool time, good food, poodles, yoga, and fire trail running, and this trip was no exception.
These watermelon swim trunks are just too cute!
Our little fish…
Abbie had fun too…
So many poodles…
Last stop: San Francisco, CA
After a night at my parents, it was time for our last stop of leg one of the Milk and Miles tour: our old stomping grounds, San Francisco, CA.
The original plan was to head into the city early – arriving around 10 am so that Casey and I could meet a friend for a 10:45 am Barry’s Bootcamp workout while my mom and niece babysat Colby – and then we’d go to the hotel, check in, and shower before heading to our blow out appointments at Drybar.
And we really tried to stick to the original plan. We really, really tried. We got everyone up and out the door around 7 am – giving ourselves more than enough time to get to the city, park, and make sure Colby was fed and happy before handing him over to my mom while we got our butts kicked. Only once we were over an hour into the drive (somewhere near Vacaville), I had a sinking feeling that we hadn’t remembered to grab the garment bag with our wedding clothes from our car. Unfortunately, my sinking feeling was right and we had to turn around drive all the way back. It made our 2 hour-ish drive into an over 4 hour-ish drive. Woof.
And while you wouldn’t know it from any of my social media posts about the trip, I admittedly got irrationally angry at Casey for the fumble (oops). I was so excited to have time in San Francisco. I was excited to see friends. I was even weirdly excited to get my butt kicked. And maybe, I was also just excited to have a little time without the baby. And the damn wedding clothes put a wrinkle in all of it.
We turned the car around and drove back to Rocklin, just in time to feed Colby again, go for a quick run with the dogs (Abbie was beyond happy to see us again) and turn around and get back in the car. By the time we got back on the road, this time with our wedding clothes in the backseat, it was nearly 11 am and we had appointments at Drybar at 2:30. I was feeling a little worried about how long it might take us – given bridge and general city traffic on a Saturday afternoon – and as predicted we hit traffic almost as soon as we neared Vacaville. Traffic was pretty steady from about Vacaville to the city, but thankfully we were able to jump out of the car just as our Drybar appointment was about to start.
We spent the rest of the afternoon playing with Colby and getting ready for the wedding. And then around 5:45 we said goodbye, grabbed an Uber and made our way to Foreign Cinema for one of the most beautiful weddings ever (congrats again Lyndsey and Jeff!). Not only were the bride and groom absolutely stunning but the venue and the food (OMG).
It was probably the first night Casey and I really had an opportunity to go out since Colby arrived so we really made the most of it. We ate good food, drank delicious wine, and danced our faces off until the DJ stopped playing. And it was….PERFECT. We got back to our hotel around midnight and absolutely crashed.
The next morning we were up early (thanks in large part to Colby)…and yes, I’m still in wedding hair.. 🙂
So we hit up Philz Coffee (naturally)….
After coffee, Casey and I handed Colby back to grandma and made our way to the Marina to meet up with CJ for yoga with one of my favorite SF instructors, Erin, at one of my favorite San Francisco studios, Yoga Flow SF.
And it was everything I needed and more.
I got to stretch, sweat, and flow all of the wedding celebrations out of my system (which probably also helped to eliminate some of my irrational anger from the day before :)).
After yoga, we found more coffee (and I really rolled the dice with this one)…
And then headed to meet my mom, niece and Colby for lunch downtown…
And since it was such a beautiful day, we opted to sit outside and enjoy second lunch (if you’re Casey) and ice cream (if you’re the rest of us) at Gott’s Roadside Cafe in the Ferry Building.
Unfortunately, I didn’t quite make it through my entire ice cream cone before Colby had an epic poo-splosion. He blew out his diaper, through his onesie and his pants – and it was impressive, to say the least.
We changed diapers and clothes right outside the Ferry Building and then tried to stop a meltdown with a little stop, drop and nurse action.
Only he was too mad…so we walked a screaming, red in the face baby back to the hotel, loaded up the car and prayed for nap time.
All in all, leg one was a success. While we had a few minor errors (ahem, wedding clothes), we managed to see and do a lot over the course of a few days.
What’s the best / funniest place your little one has ever melted down or had a poo-splosion?
Stay sweaty (and rational),