Friday, August 21, 2009

Benicia the Beautiful!

Today I had a wonderful play date with my sister, Marilyn. Marilyn is my brother, Gary's, wife and we decided to meet for lunch in Benicia. It is located conveniently about midway between our two towns. Benicia was the original State Capitol of CA and has a lot of fun and historic sites; for a small, sleepy town, that is. It is nestled on a little cove with the prettiest waterfront property you can imagine. I love Benicia because through thick and thin times, it has managed to keep its small town ambiance and charm.

I could not resist going a little early and meandering around the streets a little before lunch. Probably the most well known site in Benicia is it's beautiful gazebo in the little town square park. It was just gorgeous today...this is what my camera lens saw.

Here is their welcome sign

And a close-up of those amazingly beautiful red flowers.

The little streets are so cute and quaint!

This is where we had lunch.

This is traditionally strictly a ladies' establishment. It is so beautifully appointed and all things feminine. We were shocked to see three men in their today (not together but with various women) invading our women's club! (Just kidding but it was weird to see them there eating their little crumpets with their tea. I tried not to notice if they were holding their tea cups with their little pinkies in the air!)

I didn't take any photos inside just in case someone was supposed to be doing laundry and cooking dinner but had slipped out for a touch of elegance and a little afternoon tea with her friends! They have a wonderful menu but I always love to order their traditional tea with the three tiers servers which is just delightful. Little bits of scones with jam and clotted cream, cucumber and other little finger sandwiches, little tarts. Everything is just so sweet~we loved it. They serve all kinds of tea I always get the herbal peppermint, it is very soothing. And the food was very well prepared and is always all homemade right there on the premises.

As we chatted of course the conversation always comes around to blogging (oddly enough) and I was telling her about the series I did on keeping connected with family. She agreed. We are just going to slide each other's families up several notches on the priority scale and decided right then and there to meet each month for a similar type relaxing girl time together.

Sometimes it is just a matter of being aware of something and then calendaring it to make it happen. This seems to be a big problem in our day and time, but we are going to remedy it in our extended family starting now. And we are going to invite Emily (Steve's wife) to join us too.
They are leaving for Europe tomorrow so I know she could not have come today but next month she's in! I love that! No wonder I blogging, it makes me think past the moment sometimes and improve my life.

You know you are a blogger when...
You take a photo in the restroom.
This cute needlework picture of the Tea Room
was hanging in their darling bathroom.

I enjoyed my few hours in Benicia with Marilyn so much. I saw beauty all around me and it was impressive. Since I was in the 'searching for beautiful photo ops mode', while driving home I saw things in our own town that I normally would have passed by, thinking of something else. Why is it that we need to go somewhere else to see the beauty that is ours to enjoy at every turn?

Beauty really is in the eye of the beholder but it also requires a brain that is not multi-tasking all the time. Maybe that is why the 'get away" is best for spying the beauty of the earth sometimes. Whatever it is I love to go on them!

Our town! Both taken at a stop light!

I took this one over my left shoulder
as the traffic was just starting to move.
Yikes good thing I didn't get a ticket!
For a blogger it is the camera not
the cell phone~ a new source of revenue
for the Police...shhh, don't tell.
I promise I will be good from now on!


Nellie's Cozy place said...

Hi Bonnie,
I love the looks of Benica, don't think I spelled it right tho!!
Don't you just love tea rooms, the are just soooo quaint and lovely and frilly and fun and girly!!
I have had friends take me to lunch at tea rooms, and it was just
such a refreshing and nostalgic time. I need to find one and go sometime soon, it has been a long time!! Isn't it funny how you get
out of the habit of certain things,
and don't really know how it happened or why??
Nice you could meet your sister-in-law there, and maybe your other one will be able to come next time.
I think it is wonderful to go out
with the camera cause it seems like you see so much more stuff,
cause you are really looking for it. Makes it fun!!
Have a great weekend girly,
Love ya, Nellie

Marie said...

What a delightful looking little town! It sounds like you had a fantastic day with your sister in law! Just wonderful! xxoo

BECKY said...

Hi Bon'!! I have thoroughly enjoyed reading all of your posts about being connected to family! I have made several attempts to comment...even copied and pasted my comment into Word when I was interrupted so I didn't have to write it again, and now hubby is on the other computer so I can't access it. Hmmph!

Thank you for sharing from your heart! I love what you said about blogging being the vehicle to stay connected. That combined with what you said in this post about realizing the need and putting dates on the calendar is the answer! I think we all need help in this area to some degree. Thanks again.

So glad you had some special time with your SIL and that you got to go to such a cool girly place!! Always fun.

I am in need of some time with my sis, which is tough now because she is the daycare for her son's 3 children as he is in the middle of serious marital strife. I'll have to see what we can work out. She is up in Panama City which is a 6 hour drive. Not long at all, but want to make sure we can have some sister time in there.

Have a wonderful Saturday, sweetie, and know what a lovely blessing you are to me!

Love and hugs,

Neabear said...

I have not been to Benicia in a while. My brother used to live there. First they lived on Church street. Then the lived on something else that I can't remember right now the name of the street. Oh well. Benicia is maybe a 1/2 hr drive from my place. I should go there again. I had forgotten how cute it is. Thanks for the reminder!

LA Adams said...

It's really amazing what can happen when you bring a camera - good job!!

Deanna Munoz said...

I absolutely love Benicia. I always have. We spent our honeymoon night in Benicia (The Union Hotel) at a restored mansion on main street. It was AMAZING, so Benicia has always been special to us. Beautiful place. LOVED the pictures!!!!

Deborah W said...

So glad you enjoyed your visit to "my" little town! Husband and I moved here in 1998 and hope never to leave. We love it, and are always happy when others visit and enjoy it also. Come back again!


Deborah W said...

Hi again, I didn't see an email addy for you so I'm commenting here again. My hubby and I like Grand China for chinese food, we are there a lot, and you need to try (at least once - it's kinda pricey) Captain Blyther's for seafood. Also, First Street Grill has the BEST crab-artichoke open-face sandwich - you'll think you died and went to heaven! Randy's for mexican food is always fun and the new Rellic Tavern is AWESOME - totally beats up the dive that was there until a few months ago. It's perfect now for Girl's Night (or Afternoon) Out!

Deborah W said...

Oh, one more thing! I post the memory jogger for Memories of Me Monday on Saturday or Sunday, so look for it, and play along! I'm just starting to get some people interested in joining me in the fun. You can link your post to mine so others can read your memories (if you want to share). It's turning out to be great fun!