School is back in session for many of us. I returned back to work early this month and my kiddos returned the week after. With September already around the corner, I wanted to share about a deal you don’t want to miss in October.
During the month of October, all kids are free (12 and under, at both the San Diego Zoo and San Diego Zoo Safari Park. The San Diego Zoo, is home to 3,700 rare and endangered birds, mammals and reptiles, and the 1,800-acre San Diego Zoo Safari Park, which is now home to the Tull Family Tiger Trails, features a new forested habitat for the Safari Park’s Sumatran tigers with up-close views of the critically endangered species.
We always take advantage of this great deal. We’ve planned days out with our friends and love heading down to San Diego in October. The weather is perfect and the zoo is not crowded. It’s the best time to visit! Plus how can you beat free. Last year a friend took her 4 kiddos and only had to pay for her own admission. Trust me, plan for a visit in October.
For additional details, head here.
There are 84 million acres of protected land in America’s over 400 national parks – and it all belongs to you and me. I’m excited to share that on August 25, 2016, the National Park Service turns 100! In celebration of this milestone, all National Parks will be once again offer free admission on that Tuesday. The Centennial will celebrate the achievements of the past 100 years, while at the same time marking the beginning of the next 100 years for the National Parks.
The National Park Service and National Park Foundation wants people everywhere to take advantage of the opportunities to explore, learn, be inspired and simply have fun in their 407 national parks. The National Park Foundation’s mission to also promote the National Park Service’s community-based recreation, conservation, and historic preservation programs and how they positively impact local communities.
In celebration of the upcoming National Park Service Centennial, the National Park Foundation and the National Park Service kicked off the Find Your Park movement to inspire all people to support America’s national parks.
The National Parks invite those who already know and love the parks and also the next generation of visitors, supporters, and advocates to join the movement at FindYourPark.com and by using #FindYourPark on social media.
Other upcoming free entry days to the National Parks are the following:
- September 26: National Public Lands Day
- November 11: Veterans Day
Don’t miss out on this end of Summer opportunity!
A few weeks ago I had the opportunity to check out the Pacific Edge Hotel in Laguna Beach. I love Southern California and the Pacific Edge Hotel is pure Southern California. It’s a beautiful beach front hotel, with the most pristine waterfront beach. It’s absolute paradise!
I’ve stayed at the hotel a few times before and let me just say that it is hands down one of my favorite hotels in the world. It is an amazing place and I love to stay there at least once a year. Two years ago we stayed there all of Spring Break and it was such an amazing stay. I can’t wait to do it again.
Sometimes it’s hard to get away for more than a day and one day is all you have. I call this, daycationing. The kids and I packed a bag and headed down to the Pacific Edge for a beautiful daycation in one of their beautiful bungalows. The private, beachfront Bungalows are perfect for the most amazing day at the beach or to celebrate a special occasion. I’m turning 40 in a two months and am planning on celebrating my birthday there. Words or photos can’t really begin to describe how magical the bungalows really are.
Each bungalow includes a comfortable living room that overlooks the ocean, a VIP Bungalow Host, a private bathroom with shower, bar area, valet parking, catered food and beverages, and a private deck area. You can order food from the Deck Restaurant. The food my friends is out of this world. My kiddos were in absolute heaven!!
You can rent one Bungalow for up to ten guests, or reserve all five for a very special oceanfront event.
Bungalow rentals include:
- Fully private bungalow with keyed access from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m.
- Bungalow VIP Host at your service
- Catering from The Deck, Bottle service and more
- Air conditioning and flat screen televisions
- Direct access to the hotel’s private beach
- Beach Attendant to set up lounge chairs, day beds, umbrellas, and beach towel
The Bungalows also have direct access to the Pacific Edge Beach. You won’t ever have to worry about bringing towels, sand toys, or a chair. Everything is provided for you by a beach concierge. It is the ultimate beach trip. I remember watching the kiddos playing on the sand and having to pinch myself. I felt like I was at an exclusive resort in Hawaii.
Bungalow day rates start at $250 for weekdays and $450 on weekends, not including food & beverage minimums, and are subject to availability. Rates also vary by season.
You can share with 10 to 12 people and I think it’s perfect to split the cost with a group of friends. It is an incredible experience.
We’re excited to be able to giveaway a Bungalow daycation to one very lucky reader. Just click on the rafflecopter widget below and you’ll be entered for a chance to stay at this incredible place. Good luck friends! This is one giveaway I wish I could enter!
(Disclosure: This is not a compensated post. I was invited to spend an afternoon at one of the Pacific Edge Bungalows. However, all opinions are my very own and I absolutely love the Pacific Edge Hotel)
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I’m always on the lookout for fun things to do with my kiddos. My kiddos both love to cook and my daughter had the opportunity to attend a culinary camp last Summer that she absolutely loved. When I heard from another mom that Williams-Sonoma offered classes, I couldn’t wait to check them out. When I heard that they were free, I think I did a little dance.
Last Saturday we woke up earlier than usual and headed to our local Williams-Sonoma to check out one of their FREE Junior Chef Classes. The first thing you have to do is to call your local store to save a spot for them. Reservations are open every Monday for weekend classes. The Junior Chef are offered every Saturday and Sunday. Classes fill up quickly and you want to make sure you call early to reserve your spot.
Each month has a new theme. The classes in August will feature Italian recipes. Classes are geared for kids 8 to 13 or 5 to13. It all depends on the complexity of the recipes. Each class is about 45 minutes long and really fun for the kiddos. Parents can browse the aisles or stay and learn a thing or two.
My kiddos had a blast and can’t wait to check out another class soon. It’s a fun and inexpensive way to expose your kiddos to the culinary world. To learn more about the Junior Chef Classes head here. Enjoy!
The kiddos might be going back to school soon, but until then, it’s still National Ice Cream Month! When the weather gets this hot, is there really anything better than ice cream? My Did you know that California is the country’s leading producer of milk, ice cream, butter, nonfat dry milk and whey protein concentrate? Our dairy cows are busy women and contribute greatly to the country’s milk supply.
Here’s a simple recipe for ice cream sandwiches featuring Real California Milk:
- 1 or more scoops of your favorite ice cream
- 2 extra-large cookies of your choice
- Sprinkles (optional)
- Scoop the ice cream onto the center of one cookie. (Depending on the size of the cookie, you may need two scoops.)
- Place the second cookie on top. (For the best-looking sandwich, put the topside of each cookie facing out.) Gently press the top cookie down to create a solid connection between ice cream and cookies. If you like, use the knife to clean up the edges of the ice cream. You can also roll the edges in sprinkles. Take a bite of the sweetest sandwich in this book!
Want to learn more about the Real California Milk seal and California Dairy? Visit the RealCaliforniaMilk.com
There are a number of ways to enjoy ice cream featuring the Real California Milk seal – from milkshakes and ice cream sandwiches to plain, good ole ice cream! For recipe ideas, visit the Real California Milk website at realcaliforniamilk.com/our-food or the ‘Real California Recipes’ online cookbook.
This is a sponsored post. All opinions are my own.
Our family is crazy about Halloween. It is definitely my husband’s favorite time of year. We go all out with decorations and try to hit a few Halloween events. This year is no different and I was super excited to read last week that the Disneyland Resort announced the dates for Halloween Time at the Disneyland Resort.
The park will dress up for Halloween from September 11th to November 1st, 2015. Haunted Holiday will return along with Space Mountain Ghost Galaxy.
Mickey’s Halloween Party returns for 17 nights this year! I love being able to dress up with my kids, enter the park after hours, and trick or treat all over the park. It is sooooo much fun!!! Plus, you can’t miss the fireworks. The Disneyland Halloween Fireworks are the best and are exclusive to Mickey’s Halloween Party. This is a great way to get into the park at a discounted rate.
It has become an annual tradition for our family and we seriously are counting down the days! It’s going to be so fun! The first year I took my daughter, I had to buy my ticket off Ebay because every night was sold out. I was lucky to score one and now I make sure to always buy our tickets ahead of time.
Here is a list of dates/prices.
|Times||Advance Ticket Price||Annual Passholder Advance Ticket Price||Ticket Price on Event Date|
|Friday, September 25, 20157:00 PM to midnightCheck Availability||$69.00||$69.00||$77.00|
|Monday, September 28, 20156:00 PM to 11:00 PMCheck Availability||$69.00||$63.00||$77.00|
|Wednesday, September 30, 20156:00 PM to 11:00 PMCheck Availability||$69.00||$63.00||$77.00|
|Friday, October 2, 20157:00 PM to midnightCheck Availability||$77.00||$77.00||$77.00|
|Monday, October 5, 20156:00 PM to 11:00 PMCheck Availability||$69.00||$63.00||$77.00|
|Wednesday, October 7, 20156:00 PM to 11:00 PMCheck Availability||$69.00||$63.00||$77.00|
|Friday, October 9, 20157:00 PM to midnightCheck Availability||$77.00||$77.00||$77.00|
|Monday, October 12, 20156:00 PM to 11:00 PMCheck Availability||$69.00||$63.00||$77.00|
|Wednesday, October 14, 20156:00 PM to 11:00 PMCheck Availability||$69.00||$63.00||$77.00|
|Friday, October 16, 20157:00 PM to midnightCheck Availability||$77.00||$77.00||$77.00|
|Monday, October 19, 20156:00 PM to 11:00 PMCheck Availability||$69.00||$63.00||$77.00|
|Thursday, October 22, 20156:00 PM to 11:00 PMCheck Availability||$77.00||$77.00||$77.00|
|Friday, October 23, 20157:00 PM to midnightCheck Availability||$77.00||$77.00||$77.00|
|Sunday, October 25, 20156:00 PM to 11:00 PMCheck Availability||$69.00||$63.00||$77.00|
|Tuesday, October 27, 20156:00 PM to 11:00 PMCheck Availability||$77.00||$77.00||$77.00|
|Thursday, October 29, 20156:00 PM to 11:00 PMCheck Availability||$84.00||$84.00||$84.00|
|Saturday, October 31, 20157:00 PM to midnightCheck Availability||$84.00||$84.00||$84.00|
Tickets are now on sale for Annual passholders and will be on sale to the public on July 29th. For additional info head here.
When people think of Temecula, I think most people immediately think of a good glass of wine and maybe some golf. We’ve lived in the area for almost three years and have fallen in love with the city. It is the place to come wine tasting and it’s also a great place to hang out with the family. Here’s my suggestions for a daytrip to Temecula with the family(you can also make a pit stop at one of the local wineries, which happen for the most part, to also be family friendly).
Our first stop would definitely be a stop in Old Town Temecula. This charming little area has been around since 1882 and is home to some pretty cool old buildings. It’s a bustling area with many restaurants and shops. We love heading there to visit one of our favorite children’s museums, Pennypickle’s Workshop.
Pennypickle’s Workshop is located in the heart of Temecula’s Old Town. This 7500 square foot facility allows a child’s imagine to run wild. The workshop is packed to the brim with hands-on everything! From experiments to gadgets, there is nothing that is hands off. Your kiddos can touch and learn from almost everything around them. Nothing is off limits!
Kiddos will learn about earthquakes, volcanoes, and other scientific concepts. The best part is that all these concepts are learned through playing. It’s a great place to spend a few hours and really let the kiddos explore hands on.
Admission to Pennypickle’s Workshop is $ 5 a person. Kiddos 3 and under are free. The museum is open Tuesday to Sunday.
42081 Main Street, Temecula 92590
After a few hours of playing you’re kiddos will surely build up an appetite. We like stopping off for a treat at Old Town Root Beer Company, which is home to more than 5oo different variety of sodas. My kiddos love going in and checking out all that they have to offer. They have the best root beer floats and soda flavors. It’s a great little place to stop off and cool down. You can pack a snack/lunch and grab a soda to enjoy on the grounds. If you’re looking for a fun place to eat lunch, we enjoy Rosa’s Cantina, which is pretty delish and affordable. We also enjoy heading a few blocks from Old Town to stop at one of our favorite restaurants from San Diego, Filippi’s Pizza Grotto. They have a family deal for $20 that is out of this world good. You can add a 99 cents kids plate of spaghetti that your kiddos will devour.
Old Town Root Beer Company – 28500 Old Town Front Street, Temecula 92590
Rosa’s Cantina – 28636 Old Town Front Street, Temecula 92590
Filippi’s Pizza Grotto – 27309 Jefferson Avenue, Temecula 92590
Make sure you pack a bathing suit and towel because you will definitely want to pay a visit to the Temecula Splash Pad, located inside of Margarita Park. I saved this little treat for last because it tends to be less busy in the afternoons. I would pack a chair, some towels, a change of clothes, and some drinks to ensure a good time for all. Your kiddos will love running around the sprinklers and adjacent play area while you relax in the shade. The park is gated and since my kiddos are a little older, I can relax and allow them to run around the park without having to worry about them every minute. There are plenty of shaded areas and bathrooms close by.
Temecula Splash Pad – 29119 Margarita Rd, Temecula, CA 92591
If you’ve been meaning to visit Temecula, you definitely should! It’s a beautiful city with plenty to do for families.
I recently had a makeup disaster. My makeup bag was destroyed and so was most of my makeup. I had to buy a new case, along with new makeup. I was headed to Walmart to pick up a few things/groceries and I was able to go alone. I was in heaven. That meant I was able to stroll the aisles in peace, without being asked how much longer it was going to take. It was the perfect time to go shopping to replace my broken makeup.
I love a good deal and I knew that shopping at Walmart would mean I would score the best prices on some of my favorite brands like CoverGirl and Olay. I love Walmart because not only can I shop for groceries, household items, and clothes, I can also shop for my beauty needs. They have a large selection of your favorite beauty products at prices that can’t be beat!
I love the CoverGirl brand. I love using their LashBlast Volume Mascara. It is designed to max out each and every lash, leaving you with the ultimate big-lash look. I also love their Perfect Point Plus Eyeliner pencil. It is self-sharpening and glides on easily so you get the perfect line every time. If I can leave the house with my eyes and lips made up, I feel like I can conquer the world. I was also able to pick up a few shades of lipstick and of course an adorable new case to house all of my makeup.
I also made sure to grab a pack of my favorite beauty bar, Olay® Ultra Moisture Beauty Bars. They are so gentle that I use them to wash my face.
At the end of my shopping trip I was pretty pleased with all that I picked up!
It’s giveaway time! Win a $25 Gift Card to Walmart to purchase your favorite Olay or CoverGirl products. Just leave a comment letting me know about your favorite CoverGirl/Olay product. That’s it! Giveaway closes on July 25th, at 11:59pm. Winner will be selected at random. Good luck!
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Disclosure: The Walmart gift cards and information have been provided by P&G.
We love the Orange County Fair and look forward to it every single year. It is definitely a Summer tradition for our family. This year’s theme is , “One Big Party”, and it definitely promises to be better than ever! The Orange County Fair will run from July 17th to August 16th. The fair will be open from Wednesday to Sunday. The fair is open from noon to midnight Wednesday to Friday and from 10am to midnight on Saturday-Sunday. Admission is
- $12 for ages 13 and up
- Kids 6-12 are $7
- Seniors (60+) are $7
- Kiddos 5 and under are Free
Parking is $10 and it is cash only. Getting to the fair can get a little pricey. However, you can definitely head to the fair on a budget. Here are some of the promotions you can take advantage of.
- Free admission and parking on opening day from noon to 1pm
- Free admission for active duty military or veterans
- Kids 5-11 can earn three free carnival rides by reading two books. Click here for the book form.
- Kiddos are free on Thursdays all day long.
- $3 admission from 10-11am on weekends.
We Care Wednesdays – Free admission and 1 carnival ride with specific donations . From noon to 3pm every Wednesday.
- 7/22 – Food Drive – Donate 5 cans of food benefiting the Second Harvest Food Bank.
- 7/29 – Children’s Book Drive – Donate three new or gently used children’s book.
- 08/05 – Clothing Drive – Free admission with 5 new or gently used clothing.
- 08/12 – School Supply Drive – Donate school supplies valued over $5.
There are a number of concerts that will also take place at the Pacific Amphitheater. Concert tickets include admission to the fair. It’s giveaway time! We’re giving away a 4 pack of tickets to the Austin Mahone concert/admission to the fair on August 16th. All you have to do is leave a comment letting me know what’s the one thing you look forward to at the fair. Giveaway ends on July 22nd at 11:59pm. Winner will be selected at random. Good luck!
For additional OC Fair info head here.
I love traditions. Our family has quite a few traditions throughout the year. Our Summer traditions are very special to us. We look forward to continuing and adding to our traditions. One of our traditions is making it out to the Hollywood Bowl and enjoying an evening out under the stars.
This year we had the opportunity to attend the Back To the Future 30th anniversary concert. We were treated to a night out enjoying this classic movie as the LA Philharmonic played in the background. It was a wonderful evening out. This year my dad the trek with us and had a great time. The season is underway and there are great shows coming up.
* 7/21 & 7/23 – Carmina Burana with Dudamel
* 7/22 – Sinatra´s 100th Birthday Celebration
* 7/28 – A Midsummer Night with Dudamel
* 7/30 – Mozart with Dudamel
* 8/7+8 – Sheryl Crow and Alex Cuba
* 8/19 – Buenavista Social Club with Diego El Cigala
* 9/4+5 – ET with John Williams
* 9/19 – ABBA: The Concert
Tickets start out at $13. You can bring in snacks, pack a picnic dinner and enjoy a great night out under the stars. This year we had dinner before the show and just brought in snacks/drinks. The kids had a great time and asked if we could go again before the season is over.
To purchase tickets or for additional info head here.