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Last Sunday, we went to Parque La Carolina with our very new (local) friends, Vivian, Diego and Emi. They were in an apartment a couple doors down for half of last week, but now they have returned to their home a few hours from here. It sure was fun to have friends for a few days! Their daughter played with our girls and I tried my best to speak spanish with Vivian. One night, after the children were asleep, we stayed up late playing an Ecuador card game called Cuarenta (40). 

Parque la Carolina is a big park, 165 acres. There are so many things within the park - play structures, lagoon, botanical garden, a track, soccer fields, vendors… it was very fun to go see it and extra special to spend time with new friends! We hope to see Vivian, Diego and Emi again. We have been invited to our home and will try to make that happen in our last month in Ecuador.

Knowing that the monarch butterflies were migrating through California at the same time we would be visiting, Holly, Greta and I learned about them. We found some really fun books from the library - our favorite was “Gotta go, gotta go!” We did some other activities and I personally really enjoyed what we did! I love the monarch butterflies and I love the eucalyptus groves they stop over in. It really is such a magical event. I’m so glad the timing lined up for us to do that. We’ve been in the past… see these blog posts. 

After the butterflies we played on the beach with friends. I’m so amazed at how willing the kids (and Conor!) are to go into the water when it’s pretty chilly outside. They loved it.

We tried to visit Ranchos San Antonio on a Sunday afternoon and I was reminded of one thing I don’t like about California - too many people, not enough parking!! We drove around the parking lot for 20 or so minutes and then left. Fortunately I was able to come back the next day, and being a weekday, the parking lot wasn’t even half full. I love this place. So many good memories. I love the rolling golden hills of California

I am so glad we were able to go to the Academy of Science in Golden Gate park with my friend Kelly and her kids. It was something I really wanted to do before we moved but never got a chance to. Everything is funner with friends and I’m so grateful we could go with Kelly and her crew!

A little while ago, we went apple picking one afternoon with some friends (homeschool perks!). We had a lovely time… the afternoon was picturesque. A pretty orchard, a play house for all those girls to play in and a picnic. It was lovely! Here are some photos.

PS: I can’t pick apples without fondly remembering picking apples in California at Gizdich Ranch. Take a walk with me down memory lane here. And here are some pictures of apple picking with Greta two years ago - what a cutie!

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