Category Archives: San Francisco

Fun and Games

So our final day in San Fran we did some cool things: we visited the fortune cookie factory where two little old ladies make 10,000 cookies A DAY; Theresa got a haircut; and we went to the world’s longest running musical revue, a topical parody show called Beach Blanket Babylon which was fantastic! Great political commentary and huge, huge hats. Fun!

IMG_20140907_212240Straight afterwards we were back to San Jose to bed because the next morning we were up bright and early for Saturday morning soccer! I had a great time being a sports photographer for the morning..

Fotor0907190416Fotor0907191713Great little players! The coolest thing about the games for me was after the team handshakes the parents make a tunnel for the players to run through while giving them hi-fives. Such a cool tradition!


Last night we did some babysitting so Pete and Kim could have some time out. There were cartoons, candy and a whole lot of silliness! As a bedtime story we told them the story of how Maui fished up New Zealand – one liked it, one was skeptical and one thought it lacked stormtroopers. We need to work on our storytelling game.

Fotor090816044Today was awesome. We went out to the Santa Cruz boardwalk and it was so much fun!!

There was a new addition to the Hanaray Clan – David the minion. It took some time and effort to get him though.


We hit carousel #4 in our world collection!


And had a blast on the ferris wheel..


We have had the most amazing time with the Hanaray family here in San Jose – we are heading to New York tomorrow and I am ridiculously excited but also so sad to leave because they are all so cool. We are already planning when we can come back!


Week one of our trip has been amazing – bring on week two!


If you’re going to San Francisco..

So on Tuesday we arrived into San Francisco, courtesy of my brother Peter and on the way to our hotel, he drove us down Lombard Street (wibbly wobbly steep street) and across the Golden Gate Bridge. It was a fantastic introductory cruise around this fantastic city and got us excited about our three day stopover. And it turns out there are a LOT of Kiwis in San Fran and we’ve somehow managed to bump into all of them – in our hotel, at the local pub, in elevators, at shops and on public transport.


The following morning we began our time as tourists and jumped on a bus which took us around all the major sights of the city for cheap! We visited the Golden Gate Bridge once more and this time drove across on an open-top double decker. It was very windy and pretty bloody cold in the fog but worth it for the photos!


Day 1 we also spent half the day in the Castro – a place we have always talked about visiting. We learnt about some history at the GLBT museum and visited Harvey Milk’s old camera shop (now the Human Rights Campaign Shop) where we found a great new jumper for Chels to spread the yay gay! After plenty of rainbow spotting and checking out the neighbourhood, we were back on the tram to explore more of the central city.

tWe were fortunate enough to get an awesome tour guide driver, David, who gave great commentary as he took us around the city on the bus.

Our first full day in San Fran was capped off with dinner and a show. Chelsea picked a place next door to tthe theatre for us to eat dinner which turned out to be one of the most expensive places in the city!! We didn’t realise until we were seated so we ended up just ordering a drink and an appetiser each. Turns out they were huge anyway so plenty for us before catching the show and our lovely waitress made up for the extortionist prices.

IMG_20140904_091702The show was the local San Francisco Playhouse’s production of Into The Woods. We were gifted tickets from my brother Peter and his wife Kim for our wedding. Thanks so much guys – we had such a fantastic time at our first show in America and it was made even better by the fact that it was our first Sondheim show too!


Today we continued our carousel world tour – finding #2 and #3 on this trip! The first was at the Fisherman’s Wharf at Pier 39 [the top strip of photos] – a two-storey carousel with gold tokens and the second was indoors at Golden Gate Park where we met a cute giraffe and the operator let us ride for ages because we were the only customers.


Pier 45 held one of Chelsea’s planned tourist outings for us – the Musee Mecanique. This incredible place is an arcade (my kind of place!) and all of the machines – 300 of them – are from the 1920s and 30s and all working for a quarter. We had so much fun playing all of the games and we even had our fortune told by no less than three grandmothers and four wizard fortune tellers. We had so much fun reading our fortunes that we even got one from a mechanical Houdini at a magic shop!

Big couple of days! We have one day left in SF before we head back to the Hanaray clan in San Jose for the weekend.


First couple of days!

We have arrived and it is AMAZING!

The flight was awesome – the flight staff found out that we were on our way to get married so we got lots of special attention including bubbles (in fancy first class glasses)!   

grid 2We have had a brilliant first couple of days with the Kiwi/American Hanaray family – the kiwi lollies (candy) went down a treat!


In the last 48 hours we have done the obligatory Walmart/Sears/Target trip; we’ve been swimming and playing; and LOTS of general silliness with the three rugrats!


Today was cool, super cool – it’s Labour Day so the family took us to Great America, California’s theme park, and we all had a brilliant day – rollercoasters, carousels, log flumes and you can’t really see it but in that second shot we are all totally drenched from going on a rapid ride – so fun!

PhotoGrid_1409621669846I got my camera out and had a great time getting photos of everyone on the move…


Tomorrow we are visiting the kids’ school, before heading to San Fran for a couple of days before coming back and spending another weekend with the clan.

The sun is shining, the weather is hot (sitting around 34 degrees!) and we are having an absolute blast!