We got back yesterday from a quick pre-Christmas trip. As reported on another Oakland blog, City Homestead, it snowed here while we were gone. It's not that unusual for a little snowfall every couple of years here in the East Bay hills (we're at about 1200 feet), but our neighbor reported that the snow stuck around for a while, and that is unusual. They even had a couple of icy patches in their driveway. The Oakland Tribune site has pictures of kids building a snowman in Tilden Park in Berkeley. The good news is that we're getting snow in the mountains, too, where most of the state's water comes from in summer.
So far, we've missed all the excitement. We were in Michigan and Florida visiting family, and managed to miss the major storm that's hitting the Midwest. We did get to see my sister and her family in Michigan, including my nephew Jimmy,the library where my great aunt worked, and we got a tour at the historical museum across the street. It's in a beautiful Victorian built in 1896, 20 years after Oakland's Camron-Stanford House. It's in even better shape than CS House because it only had a few owners, was never neglected as badly as CS House was after the city museum was moved out of it, and never had any structural changes made to it. We stayed at my sister's beautiful 1930's arts and crafts home. She and my brother-in-law and parents have been slowly restoring it to its former splendor, too. I'll post some pics of that later.
Fairchild Botanical Gardens, some canoeing, catching up, and of course lots of eating made for a delightful stay with them.
As always, it was great to get home. Even if the weather isn't as nice as it was in Florida. The kitties were delighted to see us, too, although our neighbor took great care of them while we were gone (thanks, Michelle!).