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Odd Squad Live!

Posted by on Dec 28, 2016 in Entertainment, Giveaways, Theatre | 3 comments

  Attention Odd Squad fans! Things are about to get very odd in your town, and Ms. O needs YOU to help solve the case. ODD SQUAD LIVE! is springing into action on stage at the Fox Performing Arts Center in Riverside on Friday, February 10th! Odd Squad Live! is an interactive, laugh-out-loud adventure where audience members get to participate in solving a seriously strange case. When agents Orion and Oleanna get turned into grown-ups by villains, it’s up to the kids in the audience to use their math skills and help the agents decode, decipher and unravel clues. With a little help from Ms. O back at headquarters, the agents and the audience work together to save the day! Lucky audience members will even get to join the fun on stage and use amazing Odd Squad gadgets. The...

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2016 CASA Holiday Luncheon

Posted by on Dec 28, 2016 in Events, Giving Back | 0 comments

  Friends of CASA, a fundraising auxiliary of Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA), hosted its 2016 Holiday Luncheon on Wednesday, December 7, 2016, at The Monarch Beach Resort in Dana Point. The Luncheon and Fashion Show proved a hard ticket to come by as the event was sold out prior to invitations even hitting mailboxes. This year’s event netted more than $344,000 that will go directly to supporting CASA’s mission of recruiting, training, and supervising community volunteers who mentor and advocate for children in the foster care system. Top Tier Diamond Starfish Sponsors of this event included Barclay Butera Interiors and Lugano Diamonds. The sophisticated yet modern event was co-chaired by Molly Jolly and Kimberly DeLamar Matties, who were assisted by a team of over 60 members from the Friends of CASA auxiliary group, which is led by Interim...

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Oceanfront Dining at The Lighthouse Cafe

Posted by on Dec 28, 2016 in Dining, Family | 0 comments

 We dined as a guest of the venue After a busy day on the road, we popped into the Lighthouse Cafe in Newport Beach to help in celebrating the restaurant’s one year anniversary. If you haven’t been to the bright, airy and relaxing waterfront restaurant; make a plan to go soon. You’ll enjoy the architecture of the Lighthouse Cafe with large windows overlooking the harbor, a modern rotating chandelier overhead and seating around the perimeter; offering a great view from each table. Seriously, there isn’t a bad view in the house. We enjoyed some delicious menu items prepared on this evening, by Chef Ryan Sumner. A few favorites he shared with us were a mouth watering Short Rib that will melt in your mouth accompanied by a Grilled Mushroom; you’ll find this dish to be comforting and full of...

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Cooking Fun with the Chase N Yur Face Cookbook

Posted by on Dec 27, 2016 in Recipes, Shopping | 0 comments

  Chase Bailey is one of the most inspiring children on the internet. He has been sharing his journey with autism and love for cooking with families online for many years. We even had the honor of having his inspiring mom, Mary Bailey, be a guest blogger on our website. This year was a big year for Chase Bailey as he launched his first cookbook, the Chase n Yur Face Cookbook. The minute that our Chase N Yur Face Cookbook arrived, I was overwhelmed with happiness. The cookbook is full of beautiful food photos, recipes, and my kids favorite – fun facts. All of the recipes have short ingredient lists and simple instructions that even my children have been able to make some of his recipes. There are so many recipes in my new Chase N Yur Face Cookbook...

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Netflix Trollhunters Inspired Rock Trolls Craft

Posted by on Dec 27, 2016 in Crafts, Entertainment, Television Shows | 0 comments

 We are a member of the Netflix Stream Team The minute that my kids saw their first episode of Trollhunters on Netflix, they fell in love with the show. They were immersed into a world where the trolls live, and couldn’t stop talking about the show for days after watching the first couple of episodes. Since my kids love the Netflix series so much, I decided to help them make their own trolls at home, so we made rock trolls. My kids favorite part of making this craft was acting out some scenes from the series while searching for rocks around the neighborhood. All of the rocks the kids collected were just as unique as the trolls in the Netflix series. They had a blast taking their time to carefully find rocks that looked just like the trolls in...

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Five OC Holiday Break Educational Activities

Posted by on Dec 26, 2016 in Christmas, Education, Family, Holiday | 0 comments

  The holidays provide an excellent opportunity for kids to be able to participate in educational activities outside the classroom. Most schools provide more than a week off for kids in elementary and middle school, which leaves a lot of time to fill between holiday family activities. There are tons of things parents have wanted to do with her kids but they simply didn’t have time to experience during the first semester of the school year. Now that kids are at home for winter break, there are some excellent holiday educational activities in and around Orange County. Aquariums There are several beautiful aquariums within close driving distance of cities in Orange County. They provide a great field trip for people of all ages and can be pretty educational as well. Whether a kid is in first grade or fifth,...

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The REAL Look in Swimwear

Posted by on Dec 26, 2016 in Family, Fashion | 0 comments

 I was invited to be a model as a guest of SwimSpot #1 Item women hate shopping for? Swimwear! This is a daunting, unnerving task, but an absolute must. We associate it with warm weather, vacations, family, friends and making memories. Typically, shopping for that perfect bikini or one piece though is a memory we’d rather not keep! Along with this oh so fun shopping task, is seeing your favorite bikini on the towering size 2 mannequin that of course has zero cellulite and perfect bone structure, ugh we despise her. SwimSpot has taken these common insecurities and transformed them into a completely new and innovative way of shopping. Their newly re-modeled Flagship location at Fashion Island displays large flatscreen tv’s installed on fixture endcaps throughout the store and at the entrance. They feature footage of REAL women of...

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New Years Eve Bash at Habana in Costa Mesa

Posted by on Dec 26, 2016 in Dining, Family, New Year's Eve | 0 comments

 We dined as a guest of the venue We were excited to find out that Habana in Costa Mesa created a great New Years Eve bash to ring 2017! “The End of Embargo” will usher in this New Year here at Habana with a classy, fun, beautiful environment feeling as if you decided to visit Cuba this year. Good news, you can do this locally in Costa Mesa. On a recent rainy evening, we walked through the door at Habana with a lovely, warm welcome as if we were visiting good friends. The inviting red glow around the bar area was full of smiling faces with a low whisper of conversation. We noticed intimate spaces in the restaurant both inside and out under the tree tops. The restaurant felt so inviting, but because of the taps of rain coming...

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Taste of Mesa

Posted by on Dec 22, 2016 in Dining, New Year's Eve | 0 comments

 We visited as a guest of the venue I had the opportunity to sip on some cocktails and taste a few new items on the menu at Mesa. The ambiance at Mesa is sexy, and Chef Niki rocked it! Mesa is a perfect place for a date night or dinner with friends. I promise this place will have you feeling sexy too. Did someone say cocktails? I enjoyed a few of Mesa’s New Signature Cocktails and let me tell you; I could sip on them all night! From the Tempest infused gin to the Bonita Applebottom rye whiskey and the High Chi with kettle one, I was one happy girl. Each signature cocktail had its own unique taste, and you could taste that the mixologist put his heart and soul into each cocktail. I will be sipping on more...

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Best Boutique Blowdry Bar in OC: Lavender Salon

Posted by on Dec 22, 2016 in Beauty, Fashion, Giveaways | 1 comment

 We visited as a guest of the venue The one thing that I wish I were good at doing is styling my hair. Unfortunately, whenever I attempt to style my hair for a big event, it ends in a disaster. I am so thankful that blowdry bars have been invented because they have helped me to look fabulous when attending a special event or premiere. Unfortunately, a lot of local “chain” blowdry bar salons have not been providing the same high-quality service that they once did, and while getting a recent blowdry, the stylist pulled too hard and damaged my hair extensions. Since I still need a stylist to blowdry my hair on a regular basis, I went on the hunt to find the best boutique blowdry bar in Orange County, and I was so lucky to find it...

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Last-Minute Holiday Gift Idea for Fashionistas

Posted by on Dec 21, 2016 in Family, Fashion | 0 comments

 Sponsored Does anyone still need to finish their holiday shopping? My daughter finally gave me her final Christmas wish list, and everything on her list was clothing items. She is a true fashionista, and the one place where she is asking for most of her clothes to come from is The Children’s Place. The Children’s Place is a great place to get your children the hottest clothing trends, and their clothes last longer than most other clothing manufacturers. What I like about The Children’s Place is their affordable pricing. I can get 3-4 times as much clothing with my children’s clothing budget at The Children’s Place vs. other clothing stores. Wondering what the coolest clothing trends are this holiday season? The Children’s Place has helped us to give us this great gift guide for last-minute shoppers to get their...

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Orange County New Year’s Eve Dining 2016

Posted by on Dec 21, 2016 in Dining, Family, Holiday, New Year's Eve | 0 comments

  Looking for the perfect place to ring in the New Year in Orange County? We have found the best restaurants in OC to celebrate the start of 2017! Reservations are highly recommended at these premier dining destinations. Old Vine Cafe 2937 Bristol St. Suite A-102 Costa Mesa, CA 92626 (714) 545-1411 Celebrate 2017 at Old Vine Cafe, where on NYE guests will have a choice of three tasting menus, The Original, The Veggie or The Vegan Tasting Menu, created by owner and executive chef, Mark McDonald. Wine pairings will be served with all 4-courses. $95 pp. Reservations required. HOLIDAY HOURS: Christmas Eve: 9:00 am – 3:00 pm Christmas Day: Closed New Years Eve: 9:00 am – 3:00 pm (Dinner reservations only) New Years Day: Closed Coastal Kitchen 34091 Pacific Coast Hwy Dana Point, CA 92629 (949) 449-2822 Early...

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Orange County Christmas Dining 2016

Posted by on Dec 19, 2016 in Christmas, Dining, Family, Holiday | 0 comments

  Once the last present is opened, and all the holiday stress is behind all of us, treat yourself to dining out on Christmas Day. Let someone else do all the cooking, so you can focus on spending quality time with your family vs. working in the kitchen. We have compiled a list of Orange County restaurants that are offering Christmas Day dining options. If you’re looking for Christmas Eve dining options, we have included some too. Hurry… reservations are filling up fast!! Las Brisas 361 Cliff Drive Laguna Beach, CA 92651 SEAFOOD TOWER – $79 (half) $149 (full) lobster, oysters, ceviche, shrimp, king crab cocktail STARTERS Fresh Fruit SOUP OR SALAD Roasted Butternut Squash Soup crème fraîche, fried kale Roasted Baby Beet Salad arugula, candied walnuts, goat cheese, ginger vinaigrette ENTRÉES Steak and Eggs – $60 skirt steak,...

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Couples Night Out at OC Brew Ho Ho

Posted by on Dec 19, 2016 in Christmas, Dining, Events | 0 comments

 We attended as a guest of the venue In the midst of the holidays, we wanted to take some time for us; the big kids wanted to have some fun! So we popped over to Brew Ho Ho, Holiday Ale Festival on December 10th at the Phoenix Club in Anaheim. After all, we know our local area creates some amazing brews! We saw the list of breweries participating and although we had only visited a handful; this was a great way to learn about more of them. Each brewery gave a couple of choices; usually, a sampling of their most liked beer and a clever, holiday blend available seasonally. This event was the perfect way to explore with over 80 breweries participating; some familiar but several we didn’t even know about yet. Choices. So many choices. Which tent should...

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Last-Minute Holiday Gift Ideas for Kids

Posted by on Dec 17, 2016 in Christmas, Family, Holiday, Shopping | 0 comments

 Sponsored If you’re like me, then you are stressing about finishing your holiday shopping. Every year, I tell myself that I am going to start shopping early, and every year I end up shopping at the last minute. With all the popular toys sold out in stores, it can be frustrating for parents, so we made this great last minute holiday gift guide for kids. Happy holiday shopping!! Boogie Board LCD Writing Tablet The Boogie Board Original 8.5 eWriter is the model that started the paperless writing revolution. Ultra light (4 oz) and thin (1/8“), one just isn’t enough. Get one for on the go, in the office and multiple places around the house – almost anywhere you’d keep memo pads or scrap paper. Wet Head Game Wet Head is a water roulette game. Fill Wet Head with cold...

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Dine Inside of a Life-Size Gingerbread House

Posted by on Dec 17, 2016 in Christmas, Dining, Family, Featured, Staycation, Travel | 0 comments

 We visited as a guest of the venue While our family was visiting Great Wolf Lodge this holiday season, we had the most memorable experience dining inside of a giant life-size gingerbread house. The gingerbread house is located in the lobby of the resort and is adorned with candy treats. The gingerbread house features: 663 pounds of gingerbread dough 5,635 Square feet of Gingerbread 70 Gallons of Icing 1,152 Peeps 450 pounds of Mike & Ikes 135 pounds of gumdrops 85 hours of icing 160 hours of house creation Everyone who visits Great Wolf Lodge during the holidays is drawn to the beauty of the life-size gingerbread house. Inside of the house is a circular table where families are invited to have an unforgettable dining experience. The second it was time for our family to dine in the gingerbread...

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Navigating Health Insurance Options

Posted by on Dec 16, 2016 in Family, Health, Hot Topics, Parenting | 0 comments

 Sponsored It is currently health insurance open enrollment time, which is a critical time for many families. When it comes to making insurance decisions, it can be confusing and hard to navigate for many people, but everyone has the same goal of finding an insurance company that will take the best care of your family. We talked with the area director of account management at Kaiser Permanente about what families need to know when selecting an insurance company. When I got on the phone to talk with John Gustafson, area director of account management at Kaiser Permanente Orange County about insurance options he had mentioned how he had come down with the flu earlier in the week. He shared with me how he was able to have a telephone appointment with his Kaiser doctor who phoned in his prescriptions,...

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Frontier Communications Twelve Days of Giving

Posted by on Dec 15, 2016 in Christmas, Family, Giveaways, Giving Back, Holiday, Tech | 0 comments

 Sponsored What do you love about the holidays? We love to spend the holidays giving back. Tis’ the season for giving. Frontier Communications is giving back to the community this holiday season with their Twelve Days of Giving Sweepstakes. They are giving back to local charities and customers from now until December 21st on their Instagram page. Every day during the sweepstakes, Frontier Communications will announce a different prize and charitable contribution, on their website, and on their Instagram page. Then consumers are encouraged to enter the sweepstakes by sharing a picture on Instagram of ‘what you love about the holidays.’ In the Instagram post, make sure to include the hashtags #Frontier #12daysofgiving and #Sweeps – don’t forget to tag @FrontierSoCal. Once you’ve shared your picture on Instagram, then complete the Twelve Days of Giving Sweepstakes entry form. Then...

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Southgate Brewing Company Beer Tasting Dinner

Posted by on Dec 15, 2016 in Dining, Family, Travel, Yosemite | 0 comments

 We dined as a guest of the resort After a fun day exploring Yosemite National Park, we returned to Tenaya Lodge to have a beer tasting dinner featuring beers from the popular Brewery, Southgate Brewing Company. Southgate Brewing Company is located near Yosemite in Oakhurst and is a favorite dining spot for locals and visitors of the area. They are known for making the best brews in the area along with delicious bites. I am not a big beer drinker, but I fell in love with all the beers I tasted during the tasting with the Tenaya Red IPA being my all-time favorite. The tasting dinner began with coconut shrimp with a cucumber cilantro sauce paired with the Gold Diggin Blonde beer. The shrimp had the perfect amount of crisp and the beer brought out the flavors of the...

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Give the Gift of a Knott’s Berry Farm Season Pass

Posted by on Dec 15, 2016 in Family, Giveaways, Knott's Berry Farm, Theme Parks | 12 comments

 Sponsored We have been season passholders at Knott’s Berry Farm since our kids were babies. Every Christmas, we wake up to find Knott’s season passes in our stockings from my husband’s parents. The season passes at Knott’s Berry Farm are affordable enough for our parents to purchase them for all their kids and grandkids so that we can create family memories together throughout the year at the theme park. The best part about the Knott’s Berry Farm season passes is that there are no blackout dates! Here are some other great reasons to get your family a Knott’s Berry Farm season pass this holiday season. There is always something to do At Knott’s Berry Farm they call it ͞Seasons of Fun͟ because the offerings always change based on the season. Spring is the best time for foodies with Knott’s...

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