For the past couple weeks my brother, sister-in-law and niece who live in New York have been visiting the west coast.
They began their vacation in LA where they were able to connect with various extended family members including my older son and his girlfriend among others.
After successfully accomplishing this no small feat which entailed covering a lot of ground around greater Los Angeles, they headed up the coast to spend several days in Big Sur, before heading back down the coast to visit us in San Luis Obispo for six days.
Along their way from LA they stopped by for a quick tour of our new home and a short walk to one of our favorite places for lunch here.
We last saw them a year and a half ago when we went back east for a cousin’s wedding, and in all this time we have been talking about our new house and this new hometown of San Luis Obispo, sometimes ad nauseum, I’m sure.
So all that talk turned into a reality as they stepped over the threshold to see our beautiful new home. It was such a good feeling to have them here!
After they pulled away to continue on to Big Sur (where they would meet up with our younger son and his girlfriend for an afternoon) we were thrilled to have my now 23 year old niece stay with us for a few days.
For many years when she was younger she would spend a week with us in the summer in Maryland. So having her here now was just icing on the cake.
I planned a relaxing dinner at home the evening they returned from Big Sur.
While we enjoyed many fantastic meals out at local restaurants, I was eager to serve a few home cooked meals as well. Here is the menu…
For starters we had some appetizers on the deck… a Caprese platter with some beautiful local heirloom tomatoes…
and a platter of melon and prosciutto de Parma…
My husband grilled fresh wild sockeye salmon fillets.
The salmon was simply prepared with extra virgin olive oil, kosher salt, freshly cracked pepper, a bit of chopped fresh dill, and a squeeze of lemon juice.
As long as the grill was hot we grilled an assortment of summer squash with peppers…
and a platter of assorted new potatoes, all tossed with some olive oil, salt and pepper…
And some homemade tzatziki on the side for dipping with any or all of the above.
A green salad with a Blood Orange Vinaigrette completed the meal.
Except of course for that Sour Cherry Pie I had promised my brother.
We had a fun packed week, and still found time to relax, and just hang out.
We showed them around our neighborhood and walked our very walkable downtown.
We impressed them with our Mediterranean micro-climate.
We went to the vineyards, the beaches, and the farmer’s market.
We went hiking (got a little lost, but found our way), and enjoyed delicious meals at many of the marvelous farm to table restaurants that surround us.
We love our home, and we love our new hometown, but being able to share it all with our family is what really makes it feel like home.
We will be looking forward to our other family members and friends coming to visit us as time goes by, and repeat visits from all.
Through the entire process of our move I continued to tell myself that although change is hard at times change is good, and I do believe that.
But with my brother’s visit this past week i am reminded that some things never change, and that is a very good thing.