G'Day Kevin, and welcome to CF.
Since you and your gf are already doing exactly what I always recommend to newbies, I'll not give more advice. You are doing great on your own!
FWIW, my personal route
, many years ago, was o'day Osprey (15 ft daysailor), Catalina
22, Yankee 30, PJ Standfast 36 and now our current
Sayer. The location? I lived in Livermore and sailed firs the lakes, then the bay, then off to see the wizard.
Have a ball, learn lots, and when you have questions, we're all here to try and help.