We recently returned from the long Memorial Day weekend in California's wine country.
For nearly the last decade,
we've been visiting a B&B in the hills of Napa/Sonoma
overlooking the Valley of the Moon.
We've become friends with the owners
so even after they closed their doors to the general public,
every so often, we come stay just for the friendship, the beauty,
the Northern California sun and air and a little wine, food and fun.
And, of course, a few games of late-night marbles.
As a perfectly lovely bonus, they've introduced us to their friends and family,
the meadow just below the house sometimes fills with various types of wildlife
and our cell phones don't work on the hill!
The original house was built in the 1850's but burned completely
save for the chimney.
The new house, owned by the Fraziers in 1907,
was built around it.
That tree on the right stood in the earliest photos!
(And that upstairs balcony outside the guest rooms
holds comfy lounge chairs for resting
after a day of wine tasting.)
We try to help out with chores,
and we make each other dinners
but having run the B&B for nearly 20 years,
they do make the best breakfasts.
In warm weather, dinners are often served on the patio
overlooking the meadow and the valley beyond...
...and the days end with the perfect, radiant backdrop.
It doesn't get much better than this
with people you love.
(Photos copyright: Kirsten Steen)