Cute Idea: Free Kids Birthday Parties at Ikea Costa Mesa/San Diego

Credit: IKEA

My son just celebrated his birthday a few weeks ago and we had his birthday party this past Friday. If it was up to him he would turn his birthday into a 8 week celebration! It’s cute to see the kiddos so excited about their birthday and I wanted to share a cute little celebration that IKEA Costa Mesa and San Diego do for kids birthdays.

IKEA Costa Mesa and San Diego hosts Free kids birthday parties on the second Wednesday of every month in Costa Mesa and the first Tuesday of the month in San Diego.The parties are for kids 10 years old or younger.Each birthday kiddo is allowed to invite two of their friends/siblings  to the party. The party includes entertainment, soda, and cake. Plus, each birthday child will receive a gift from IKEA.

All you have to do is  (714)751-7167, ext#1470  or 619)283-6166, ext#1330 to reserve your place at the party. I think I’m definitely going to give this a whirl for my daughter’s birthday! For additional info head here and here

Outdoor Play – Taking the kiddos outside to just play!


Swinging Around

While we were out last week on our play it by ear day, we stopped at Aliso Park and the kiddos played till it was dark. They had a great time and honestly couldn’t stop talking about it for days. They played in the sand, they swung as high as they could(“push me to the sky Mom”) and pretended they were pirates on a ship. I remembered once again the importance of free/open play and making sure the kiddos have the opportunity to let their imaginations run wild and of course get the wiggles all out of the way.


Making Sand Angels

It was a great reminder to not forget to take the time to go out and play!

If you’re looking for park ideas or other ideas for open and outdoor play, checkout these two fun blogs, and




Museums Free-For-All : Free Admission Days Jan 28th and Jan 29th

The Autry

The Autry

If you are looking for something fun to to this weekend, you might want to give the Museum-Free-For-All weekend a try. The Museum Marketing Roundtable will host the Free-For-All’ Saturday-Sunday, January 28th and 29th, 2012. The museums—presenting art, cultural heritage, natural history, and science—will open their doors and offer admission Free of charge.

Here is a list of Participating Musems

For additional info head here.

Wordless Wednesday: Shave Ice in Winter


Enjoying his Shave Ice

I love making little traditions with my family. One of our little traditions involves minimum school days. My daughter is in 1st grade and every Wednesday she gets out an hour early from school. On these days we do something special. We usually head over to 7-11 to get a slurpee or grab some frozen yogurt. A new shop has opened up near our home, Oahu Shaved Ice and we can’t get enough. We now head over after school on Wednesdays for some Shave Ice. It’s something the kiddos look forward to and so do I! Do you have “little traditions”?

For more Wordless Wednesday fun  head over to Angry Julie Monday.

I would love to feature your photos of your outings on Wordless Wednesday. If you have any that you would like to share, please send them to


San Diego Model Railroad Museum


I’m excited to introduce the first of our new contributors Syreeta! She recently had  the opportunity to head down for a fun day with the family in San Diego and shares all about it.

Credit: S Morales

I’m always looking for new and exciting things to do with my little buddies, and this weekend was no exception.  We jumped in the mommy mobile and headed south to visit the San Diego Model Railroad Museum.  The museum is located in historic Balboa Park which is chock full of beauty, art, and culture.  Parking is free, but it’s a bit of a nightmare, so wear your most comfortable shoes, leave your car out on the street and walk into the park.

Credit: S Morales

The SDMRM is located on El Prado Street between the Reuben H. Fleet Science Center and the Museum of Photographic Art.  The cost to enter the museum is $8.00 for adults, and the best part is that kids under 14 are FREE with a paid adult admission.  Luckily, I found a great deal on Living Social to get our tickets for $4.00 each.  If you live in San Diego County, the first Tuesday of the month is free.

Credit: S Morales

When we first entered the museum, my kids ran straight for a small replica of an American steam engine train from the 1830’s.  And that was just the beginning of their intense amazement at this awesome place.  The models were built using several different scales, with their descriptions printed in the windows.  One awesome thing is that they allow you to go upstairs where you can watch some creators painting and working to complete new models.  It’s pretty cool to see them in unfinished status.  The intricate detail that goes into these model towns is amazing.  One model town even had an old school McDonald’s and kids sledding down a snow covered hill.

After spending quite some time marveling over every billboard and cop car with flashing lights, we made our way down to the star of the museum since Thanksgiving: the Holiday Lego Train Exhibit brought for our enjoyment by the Southern California Lego Train Club.  If you’ve ever been to Legoland, you will immediately recognize the outstanding level of creativity in every piece of work in the Lego display.  There was a train track and real moving train surrounding a town filled with busy occupants.  The club created a list of Lego items for you to search for in the town, and my kids had an absolute blast looking for things like a cat burglar and a porta potty.

The San Diego Model Railroad Museum is a great place to spend a couple hours with your kids exploring these impressive models.  To learn more about the museum, head here

Syreeta is  mom to two very busy boys, ages 3 and 10.  She works full time as a loan processor at a local credit union, and part time as a finder of fun!  She loves to take her  family out on new adventures all over Southern California.  Disneyland is her  favorite place to make memories, but she  also enjoys other amusement parks, museums, zoos, exhibits, and anywhere else there are good times to be found.

Daytripping in Newport Beach: The best $15 I’ve ever spent


Ruby’s Shake Shack is like no other!

Last Saturday, we had planned to go whale watching with Dana Wharf and Sportfishing, however, due to the stormy weather and not the ideal boating conditions, we decided to reschedule to next Saturday (post coming soon).  I had two kiddos that were very disappointed that the weather had thwarted our plans. We decided to have some fun even if we might get a little wet. We decided since we were already on our way to the beach to head to Newport Beach to explore the Sherman Library and Gardens.

Sherman Gardens

The Sherman Library and Gardens, located in Corona del Mar is a museum of living plants and fun to walk around with the kids. I would recommend that if your kiddos have cameras,to bring them along.  I let the kiddos borrow my iPhone to capture whatever they found interesting and it really put a fun twist on our outing. The kiddos loved getting up close with the plants and trying to learn as much as possible about the different plants. It was downright beautiful and peaceful. The kiddos and I were both “zenning” (I just made that word up) and taking in the beauty of it all.

Love all of the different colors!

Smelling it all in

We had a great time at Sherman Gardens but we were still itching to do some exploring and we decided to head further down PCH. Next stop, Ruby’s Shake Shack. I’ve passed the Shack so many times but it’s usually crowded, but not this time. We stopped in for some shakes and ice cream and boy were we in for a treat. The views are spectacular and the kids and I took it all in.

Taking it all in

We sat down and watched the waves crash down. The kids couldn’t stop talking about the view and the waves. It was breathtaking.

"Look at those waves!"

After we watched the waves, we were wanting to go down into the sand so we traveled further down PCH to Aliso Beach Park (it’s not technically in Newport but close enough). We played in the sand for an hour and a half. The kids ran around having the time of their lives and I couldn’t stop grinning from ear to ear!

Playing their heart out

It was a beautiful day

The kids and I had the best day. We finished it all of by sitting on one of the nearby benches, all snuggled up and watched the sunset. It was a simple day, yet so magical all at the same time.

Our view of the Sunset

Our unplanned day trip turned out to be an unforgettable one. We had so much fun and made some incredible memories and we hardly spent a dime. I hope you can jump in the car and just head down somewhere fun. No planning, simple fun and incredible memories!

Project Organization


Getting organized!

With the New Year, I think many of us have made resolutions to be better about something in the New Year. I’ve made resolutions about getting healthier and the other all center around getting organized. I really do feel that if we are organized, life runs smoother and that’s a must when you have young children. The folks at Simon Malls gave me a challenge I couldn’t resist ; Get organized at the Brea Mall.

First stop: Pottery Barn

My first stop was Pottery Barn, I love the store and I always get some great decorating ideas whenever I stop by. They had some perfect baskets that are great for organizing the living room and also the bathroom.


Love these baskets!

Love the hand towel and magazine baskets. I think I'm going back for them.

I loved the ideas but after some thinking I decided that one of the first places I wanted to organize at home was the kitchen and headed to Macy’s Home Store to see what they had to offer.


Decided to start my organization with the kitchen and nothing says kitchen like Martha Stewart

I love Macy’s Home Store and after debating back and forth decided that I should focus on the kitchen first. I love Martha Stewart’s kitchen line and decided to give their products a try. I was given a $50 card to the Brea Mall to see how far that would take me and It went pretty far! I bought Martha Stewart’s 12 piece glass storage set, a Martha Stewart Cereal container, a Martha Stewart sugar container and a Martha Stewart Flour Container. It’s one of those purchases I’ve been wanting to purchase for a long time but never got around to. In total i spent $50.39 and I’m on my way to getting my kitchen organized, one step at a time.

Disclosure: This is not a compensated post. A gift card was provided to assist in review.

Free Kidtoons Movie Morning Update: Dino Dan and Barbie

Dino Dan

I’ve shared with you about how Daytrippingmom and the Ultraluxe Anaheim Cinemas at the Gardenwalk are hosting a super fun and FREE Family Movie morning  and we will be screening Barbie: A Mermaid Tale. I know not many boys are into Barbie and we shared that with Ultraluxe and they have graciously added a screening for the boys! You can watch either Barbie or Dino Dan!

All you have to do is register at this link and you are ready to go! I hope you can join us on Saturday, February 4th. The Daytrippingmom Gang will be there including Desiree and hopefully Maribel and our new contributors(I’m working on getting their bios up). We will not be having refreshments but we will be having some fun goodies for every family that comes!  I hope to see you there!

Date Night Idea: Battle of the Dance


Credit: Battle of the Dance

I’ve tried this before but failed, this time I’m going to give it a better shot. Date nights are tough in our family. My husband and I both have very busy schedules and it is really difficult to schedule a night out where it is just the two of us, add to it that it can be expensive and difficult to find a babysitter and well date night’s are almost non existent in our family. I’m pretty sure you can all relate, because having a young family can be tough on couple time. Well this year, we’ve decided to make more of an effort and two weeks ago we went on a super fun date night to Battle of the Dance Dinner Show in Anaheim.

Pre Show

Battle of the Dance is the newest dinner show in Southern California and features an amazing international dance crew that dances everything from Flamenco to Celtic Dancing.  The show begins with hors d’oeuvre and a fun pre show before you are led to your seats. You are then led to your seats and this is where the fun begins.

Credit: Battle of the Dance

The show features dancing from the entire globe. You will find yourself mesmerized by the sights and sounds of Bollywood to an Argentine Tango. You start off with dinner(we had the Gold experience which included dinner and pretty decent seats). You can either choose the Gold Experience or the Platinum Experience which offers the best seats in the house and also a larger selection of entrees for dinner (The Gold Package features chicken or fish. We picked the chicken and it was delish!).

The Irish Dancers

The show was very entertaining and the dancers were very talented and really were a joy to watch. We had a great time on our night out and I would definitely recommend the show to anyone that needs a good night out with your significant other. I have to admit that the show actually went by pretty quickly! Sometimes dinner shows seem to drag on but this was definitely not the case with Battle of the Dance.

Check out their Facebook page, because they currently have a discount code for a Buy one Get one Deal. You can’t beat Buy one Get one Free! To learn more about the show and to purchase tickets, head here.

Disclosure: No compensation was received for the post. Complimentary tickets were offered to aid in the review.

Piedras Blancas Elephant Seal Rockery


Elephant Seals

Last month when we took the family on a quick little getaway up the coast, we made sure to drive a few miles past Hearst Castle to the Piedras Blancas Elephant Seal  Rockery.  The Elephant Seals (Mirounga angustirostris) spend most of their time diving for their food and out in the ocean. These  magnificent creatures are fun to watch and we watched them as a family for quite some time.

all about these majestic creatures

The Piedras Blancas Elephant Seal Rockery, is located about 4 miles past the entrance to Hearst Castle on the ocean side of Highway 1. There are docents from the Friends of the Elephant Seals that are there to answer any of your questions and provide information.

Mesmerized by the seals

The beautiful Vista Point offers plenty of parking and is a great place to observe nature in action. Next time you are heading up the Central Coast, make sure to stop by at the Rockery. It is a great educational experience and downright fun for the entire family.

For additional info head here.