Well, another summer has come and gone. We were again fortunate to have our grandchildren stay with us for several weeks. As they grew into their teens, we were concerned that keeping them entertained and interested was going to be more of a challenge. Once again, Sonoma County came through with more terrific things to do and wonderful places to eat. Hood Mountain Regional Park, a 1,750-acre wilderness with rugged trails just east of Santa Rosa, gave us a wonderful opportunity to include Jake in our fun. Backpacking in with a lunch allowed us to take our time and appreciate the beautiful wilderness. Walking sticks are helpful and plenty of water is a must!
Horseback riding at Chanslor Ranch in Bodega Bay was a big hit. We decided to take the beach ride that took us through beautiful dunes and along the majestic Pacific ocean. With the exception of a few sore tailbones, everyone returned intact and happy.
Our grandson, Gabriel, has been learning the art of rock climbing and wanted to try his hand at bouldering the Sunset Boulders at Goat Rock, near Jenner. The rest of us did some easier climbing, just to meet him at the top and cheer his progress.
There’s always something new and unusual to experience here. The top of our list this time was meeting The Pen Guy, Costas Schuler, and his amazing Mercedes Pens. He is warm, friendly and super-green, setting a goal to collect a million pens, keeping them out of landfills!
One kid-worthy activity was outside of Sonoma County, but is worth a mention: Grandpa Clay took the four teens to Six Flags Discovery Kingdom in Vallejo. That was guaranteed entertainment for this group!
Of course, we had to try to some new dining experiences. Some of our favorites included: