Everyone usually reacts in shock that we prefer to drive across the country instead of fly over, but we really do love being able to stop and see all the great little towns across America, beauty from the plains to the desert to the mountains, I love it all. Las Vegas was not a favorite, but it is kind of fun, such a completely fake town. We did stop at the Pawn Stars shop, just missing a photo op with Chumley! In LA, love all the palm trees and can mostly deal with the crazy traffic. One ride we went on in Disneyland is Soaring over California, it really feels like you are flying over the landscape, I loved the end when you fly over the night time traffic on the freeway and right into the park and over Cinderella's castle, we went twice on that one!
In northern California, where I was born and lived until first grade, Placerville is charming, despite its lurid past as Old Hangtown, a tree in the center of town served as the gallows for many an outlaw back in the day. Gold was discovered nearby in Coloma, such a beautiful place to visit with the sparkling clear American River running by, gold dust glinting in the sand on the banks. We panned for gold and even found a few specks! I love Grass Valley, lots of wineries and antique stores and the BEST restaurant, a little Italian inspired cafe that made a wonderful Caprese salad with heirloom tomatoes. I bought wine from an enthusiastic young woman selling for her family vineyard, the tasting was really good. The antique stores were great, first buys of the trip there, then couldn't find another good antique town until we got back to Nebraska. I found a ton of stuff there, in Grand Island, Lincoln and Omaha, then a few more treasures in Des Moines on our way home.
The photos are from top to bottom, hydraengas at the Empire Mine near Grass Valley, my girls at the home of the Empire Mine owners, a wild fire in Utah, the cliffs of Utah, golden aspens in Colorado, sunset in Nebraska, and an old print of Placerville, which looks just the same except the horses are replaced by cars.