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The hubby and I recently returned from a brief trip in the “Golden State” – or California, for those of who had to Google the nickname like I did. We had a great time, and especially loved the non-Texas weather.

Case in point:

THIS was the weather when we arrived...

First stop, Wine Country! About a week before our trip, I found a great deal on Living Social Adventures that included two winery stops, a cheese tasting, Italian lunch, and…wait for it…a CUPCAKE tasting. I was theirs…hook.line.sinker.  Although I was a little skeptical/nervous that we’d get the commercialized, “here’s your 2 oz. of wine to taste and no more…oh and please don’t touch the barrels,” it was nothing of the sort. Both wineries did a great job catering to such a large group and the “guides” were really fun as well.

Stags Leap Winery...in true Napa fashion, they met us with a glass of wine as we stepped off the bus!

Andretti Winery was so pretty...they took us on a tour and taught us all about the ups and downs of winemaking...they take it pretty seriously!

Next stop…eat ourselves silly.

Looking back at my “Check Ins” on Facebook, I can see why I was afraid to check the scale (or bank account) upon returning to the Lone Star State. After a quick, two-mile walk through Chinatown, we started our day at the aquarium.

Lots and lots of fishies...

After a brief stop to see the sea lions…

This one was so cute as it scratched its back...my dog is doing the *EXACT* same thing at this very moment.

We headed to Ghiradeli Square, looking for lunch. Of course, we didn’t make it too far, before stumbling upon the (in)famous In-and-Out burger. (For those non-Texans reading this…In-and-Out just opened its first location in North Texas a few months ago.  People waited for hours for a burger…and I’m pretty sure I saw a lady cry on the news she was so excited.) We thought we’d try it to see what all the fuss was about.

Nothing says "vacation" like greasy burgers and french fries!

After unbuttoning my jeans, we continued the trek to what I like to call, “Chocolate Heaven.” (Side Note: One of the many redeeming qualities of visiting such a hilly city – and not renting a car – is that we walked EVERYWHERE…so, I mean really, those extra 4 pounds gained over the course of 4.5 days, is probably muscle, right??)

I'm too embarrassed to show you what I ordered...but you'll be happy to know I ate the whole dang thing.

We couldn’t leave San Fran without a trip over the Golden Gate Bridge, and fortunately were able to spend a day in Saucalito and the Muir Woods (where the REALLy tall trees are). I’d have to say this was my favorite part of the trip. Saucalito was beautiful and I had a chance to sit across the table from this guy for lunch and just stare out over the water.

My handsome lunch date:)

The Muir Woods were fascinating…some of the trees were more than 1000 years old…it’s crazy. It was a nice break from the downtown, buildings-everywhere feel to the rest of our trip, and I always like the opportunity to get dirty.

I was trying to be a tree...

All in all, it was a wonderful trip…and to top it off, the dogs have been X-hausted since they’ve been back from “camp.”

Until next time, California…stay classy.

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