Friday, August 28, 2015

California Trip Recap and What I've Been Up To lately

Hey, guys! Didn't mean to go MIA in the blogosphere for so long. This post is a month late, but as they say, better late than never. Part of my delay is that this trip has left me with a heavy case of the feels. Southern California is the region I grew up in. Seeing it again after 10 years was a major throwback. Ready for the slide show? Here we go!

It started with a couple days at Huntington Beach, where I'd spent many summers treading the sea and catching waves. My wife and I decided, not only would we enjoy our 10 year anniversary to the fullest, we would hit as many items in our bucket list as we could. Dining in a restaurant that's on a pier was great way to start.

This was followed by a full day at the beach. Luckily enough, I was reacquainted with a cousin I hadn't seen in forever, and it was to my surprise that her friend was checking out the copy of Woven I gave her. It's official, guys; people are reading Woven on the beach!

And of course, as you would expect, beachy shenanigans ensued. 

This chapter of our trip concluded with a sunset walk along the shore. How could we not? I think we walked a good five miles that evening. It was a literal walk to remember, hand in hand with the woman I love.

Cut to the next day. Did you know some have asked if I created my middle name so it would look cool on a book cover? Nope. "Powers" is my real middle name, and I have this couple to thank for that, buried not far from where we had stayed. Miss you, Poppy and Grammy.

Fun fact: my wife had never been to Disneyland before. Check that item off her bucket list! Just in time for the 60th anniversary of the park, no less. Since I grew up so close to Anaheim, Disneyland was a biannual deal for most of my childhood. I still remember when they had the sky buckets and the little motorboats. Much of the park has stayed the same after all these years, with a few upgrades. One of my bucket items was to finally dine at The Blue Bayou, that restaurant you can see at the start of the Pirates of the Caribbean ride. Pricey, but undoubtedly gourmet. And the Fantasmic show afterward was amazing. Disneyland should be a more regular thing for us, I say.
 Inside The Blue Bayou - as you can see, I got lots of sun that day.
The next night, we were treated to dinner by my former neighbors in the animation industry at Tam O'Shanters. I had never been, though I had no idea how close it was to home or that the building led to the inspiration for the cottage in Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. Cool! Thanks again for having us, guys! (Photo Credit: Sara Sanford).
And now, my home town. Burbank has really chanced over the years. Much of it was remodeled or built anew, but it was a blast to show my wife where I grew up. See that black building in the back? My father used to work there. Now the Cartoon Network logo is on it. Yay!
That afternoon was the big homecoming event, a signing in the very Barnes and Noble store where I had decided to start writing. Such a surreal experience, and we had a good turnout. Hadn't sold so many books since the launch in January, and I was told the signed copies I left with the store were gone shortly after I left. Thank you everyone who came to the event. (Photo Credit: Mary-Alexandra Smith).

The trip concluded with a terrific dinner at the Castaway, a special restaurant up the hill which gives you a fantastic view of Burbank valley at night. But I have to be honest here, the brightest light of them all is this beautiful girl right here. My beacon, my light, my love. Thank you for an incredible 10 years together. Happy Anniversary. :)

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So, what have I been up to? Why my leave of absence for so long? Much of that will be explained on Wednesday for my IWSG post, but for now I will say I'm actually glad summer is winding to a close. It's been the busiest and weirdest of seasons this year. Now that school has started and I have resumed a 4/10 work schedule, I get an extra day a week to take care of writing business. That's always nice.

Thank you for checking in on me. The plan from here on out is to take the Laire off autopilot and resume regular postings again. Until next time my friends, keep sailing through those clear skies.

What have you been up to this summer? Have a special celebration of your own? If far from where you grew up, planning to go back?


  1. I love everything about this. What a great trip and beautiful pics!

  2. Happy belated anniversary. Love the pictures!

  3. That's awesome you did the signing in that Barnes and Noble.
    You definitely needed to take your wife to Disneyland. Been years since I've been there - Disney World is much closer.
    Looks like a great time!

  4. Super happy/excited for you DPK! Sounds like a fantastic time.

  5. Hi David - yup they read Woven on the beach in Eastbourne, England too - or could have done ... sorry no pix available! Loved the book.

    Your break in CA sounds amazing and congratulations on that 10th anniversary ... you both look exceedingly happy and content .. and you've introduced me to a few new things in CA .. cheers Hilary

  6. I've been to Disney World but of course never Disney Land. Glad you had such a fabulous trip. Looks like you and your wife had a great time. I am not surprised they read Woven on the beach. It's a great story. I have only ever been to San Francisco. Didn't even make it to wine country.

  7. Happy Anniversary! You guys make the cutest couple :) And what great photos! I'm so jealous!

  8. I love that Rubys. And the walk out to it is fantastic.

  9. Woven as a beach read? Interesting. Looks like a fabulous anniversary/work trip. I'd love to do a book signing at B&N. Way cool.

  10. Up to our eyeballs in repairs this summer, i'd have rather gone to Disneyland!

  11. Sounds like a fantastic trip. I totally understand the nostalgia and longing of coming home after 10 years gone. Hope you had a wonderful time!

  12. Looks and sounds like you had a magical vacation. Awesome that you and your wife were ale to cross some things off your bucket list. :) I have never been to Disneyland either. Thanks for sharing!

  13. Makes me homesick too. So jealous! Why do I live in Illinois again? Oh how I miss the beach and D-land!!!! Thanks for posting these great pictures David!

  14. It's evident from the pictures that you had a fantastic trip! Happy 10th Anniversary to you and your wife! It looks like it was one filled with memories to last year until your 20th!!!

  15. Looks like a lovely time. And congrats on the booksigning. We had a wedding in the family this summer and the fun that went with that.

    Susan Says

  16. Sounds like you had a ricking time! I love going to the Blue Bayou by the way:)

  17. Aww. Sweet post, nice vacation, and lovely pictures. :)

  18. I grew up in Redondo Beach so I'm visualizing your whole trip. Yay for the Blue Bayou. Love their overpriced but delish Monte Cristo sandwich.