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Our Summer Vacation | California Family Photographer

Written By:

Maryam Salassi

Sep 14, 2017

School started on August 30, so the week before we headed to San Diego and Orange County for a last minute vacation to end the summer. We usually drive down, but tickets were super cheap and we used points for the rental car and most of our hotel so it ended up being a fairly inexpensive trip (hooray!). We flew into John Wayne airport in Santa Ana then drove straight to San Diego where we stayed at the King’s Inn. It was a really cute motel that has a very kitschy/retro vibe. All the staff we interacted with were hospitable, friendly, and helpful which is always a good sign!

We hit up Legoland our first full day and it was fun but definitely not Disneyland. It was perfect for Margaux and she rode all the rides except one (she’s very cautious and almost never rides any rides so that should tell you something). She very much enjoyed it but my husband and I were a little bit bored and all three of us were done by 3pm. It’s geared towards younger kiddos so if it’s been on your to do list I’d go sooner rather than later.

The next day we went to the New Children’s Museum where Margaux worked with some fiber arts, drew her own superhero, colored a squid that ended up in a virtual aquarium, and played in a tree house. There was a ton of stuff to do and if you have patience for that sort of thing I highly recommend it! We also met up with a photographer friend of mine, Kelsey Smith, and our kids terrorized the patio at Communal Coffee (EXCELLENT COFFEE!!!) while we chatted.

Before our trip I had purchased a Dicapac (<- affiliate link) for my camera which is essentially a giant fancy ziplock. I was super nervous to use it because I’ve heard reports that it can leak but I love love love the way the photos I took at the pool turned out! I don’t plan on fully submerging it but it’ll be great for beach sessions and vacation shots for sure.

Next, we headed up to Orange County and met up with some more friends in Long Beach. I took the twins’ newborn photos two whole years ago and I love seeing them grow up into hilarious tiny humans! We had tacos on the beach and the kids dug holes, terrorized birds, and splashed each other silly.

We spent even more time at the pool, spent more time with friends and family, headed to LA to visit the Broad Museum (and crossed off seeing Yayoi Kusama’s Infinity Mirrors off my bucket list), the Walt Disney Concert Hall (stunning!), and the Griffith Observatory (super cool, free, and worth fighting traffic). We had ice cream at Jeni’s to finish off our last day and it was perfect.

I was a little worried about coming home just two days before school started but it was an excellent way to recharge before heading back to school and back to work and routines. I’m already looking forward to our next family trip to Chicago for a wedding! Hope you all had a wonderful summer. <3

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