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Hilton San Diego Downtown/Bayside Weekend Getaway

Posted by on Sep 19, 2016 in Featured, San Diego, Staycation, Travel | 0 comments

 We stayed as a guest of the venue Staycations are my favorite kind of family vacations. It just takes a couple of minutes to toss a couple of outfits into a bag and be poolside at a hotel relaxing within minutes. Because staycations are always far less stressful than major vacations, our family tends to take staycations a lot throughout the year. It is a perfect way to stop, relax, and recharge as a family without a big cost or stress. We found ourselves overly stressed about the start of the school year, so we took our kids to San Diego for the weekend to stay at the new Hilton San Diego Downtown/Bayside and relieve some of their back-to-school anxiety. The new hotel is centrally located within walking distance of some of the best family attractions in downtown San...

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Pacific Standard Coastal Kitchen in San Diego

Posted by on Sep 14, 2016 in Dining, San Diego, Travel | 0 comments

 We dined as a guest of the venue When I heard about the opening of the hottest new dining destination in San Diego, Pacific Standard Coastal Kitchen, I couldn’t wait to make plans to go to San Diego for an epicurean adventure. When making plans to dine at the new restaurant, I learned that a new hotel, Hilton San Diego Downtown/Bayside, just opened next door, making it the perfect opportunity for a family staycation. After spending the day exploring downtown San Diego, our family had worked up quite an appetite and were excited to having dinner at the chic new restaurant. The minute that I stepped into the restaurant, I was in love with the decor. The restaurant features cool colors, modern light fixtures, and golden silverware. Before I even had a chance to taste the food, I was...

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Best Family Hotel in La Jolla: Hyatt Regency La Jolla

Posted by on Jul 25, 2016 in San Diego, Staycation, Travel | 0 comments

 We stayed as a guest of the resort Last year, we started spending a lot of time in La Jolla. We created unforgettable memories kayaking into sea caves, whale watching, visiting the sea lions, and dining at cutting edge restaurants. The one thing that we have not experienced was staying the night together as a family in La Jolla until recently. Instead of making our summer trip a day trip, we made it a weekend getaway by staying at the Hyatt Regency La Jolla. The Hyatt Regency La Jolla is located just a short distance from the crystalline La Jolla waters and activities. The moment that we arrived at the resort, we were greeted by the charming staff. Our kids relaxed in the children’s lounge while I checked us into our room for the weekend. The moment that we...

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La Jolla Strand Beach

Posted by on Jul 25, 2016 in San Diego, Staycation, Travel | 0 comments

 We stayed in La Jolla as a guest of the Hyatt While staying at the Hyatt Regency La Jolla, I wanted to visit a beach that didn’t have the crowds that La Jolla Shores and La Jolla Cove have. The staff at the hotel recommended we visit La Jolla Strand Beach for the afternoon, and it was one of the most beautiful beaches I have visited. Since the beach isn’t overcrowded, parking is easy at La Jolla Strand Beach. We parked our car and carried our beach gear for just a few steps until finding a perfect intimate cove to spend the afternoon together as a family. There are lots of various rock formations along the cliffs that carve out the beach creating a lot of places for families to feel like they have the beach all to themselves....

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Family-Friendly Asian Cuisine at Cafe Japengo

Posted by on Jul 25, 2016 in Dining, Family, San Diego, Staycation, Travel | 0 comments

 We dined as a guest of the venue While staying at the Hyatt Regency La Jolla, we had an unforgettable dinner at Cafe Japengo. When we first made our reservations at the restaurant, I was concerned that it might not have enough kid-friendly options, but the staff at the Hyatt ensured me that it was the best choice for dinner, and they were right. After a day of fun in the sun, we walked across the street for dinner. The staff welcomed us and found a comfortable table for us to enjoy dinner. While looking over the menu, I was overwhelmed with the large variety of healthy options on their kid’s menu. From udon noodles to a bento box, there was something for all of my children to enjoy. We started dinner with the house made chicken potstickers topped...

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San Diego Staycation at Marriott Marquis San Diego Marina

Posted by on Jun 1, 2016 in Featured, San Diego, Staycation, Travel | 0 comments

 We stayed as a guest of the resort San Diego is one of my favorite summer staycation destinations with the Marriott Marquis San Diego Marina being one of the premier resorts for families. The resort is centrally located right on the waterfront and is just steps away from the popular Gaslamp Quarter. With summer right around the corner, I couldn’t wait to plan a family staycation at the Marriott Marquis San Diego Marina, so we had a pre-summer getaway. I made plans to stay during my son’s birthday weekend so he could enjoy some relaxation by the pool and have dinner at a restaurant he had wanted to try, Fogo de Chão Brazilian Steakhouse. When we first arrived at the resort, we checked into our luxurious room that had beautiful panoramic views of San Diego. There was a small...

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Jeffrey Stein Children’s Music Garden at Alta Vista Gardens

Posted by on Feb 8, 2016 in Cool Places, Featured, Parks, San Diego, Travel | 0 comments

  The Jeffrey Stein Children’s Music Garden at Alta Vista Gardens is one of the most magical places on earth. While I was coming home from a mother/daughter getaway in San Diego, my daughter had mentioned that she read about this park online, and wanted to visit it. I was so excited that she was researching parks that she wanted to visit so we stopped while on our way home from San Diego. The minute that I stepped out of the car, I was in awe. It is a park that you’ll want to spend the entire day at with your children. Just like visiting Legoland or the San Diego Zoo Safari Park, you’ll have enough to keep your kids occupied for an entire afternoon at the Alta Vista Gardens – so pack a lunch and get ready to...

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Candy Mine at Miners Diner Julian

Posted by on Feb 5, 2016 in Dining, San Diego, Travel | 1 comment

  When I was dining at the Miners Diner in Julian, I noticed a whole in the wall with steps leading down and an arrow pointing towards it saying, “Come see our Candy Mine!” I was a little curious about what it was going to be, so I asked my parents if I could go down there to check it out. When I was walking down the steps, I started to smell candy immediately. When I got down the steps, I was so overwhelmed by all the candy! They had literally every type of candy there I could imagine. It was probably the coolest thing I had seen in Julian (other than the real mine I had just finished visiting.) I was excited. I stayed down in the candy mine for at least ten minutes before I ran back...

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Queen Califia’s Magical Circle ‘Beetlejuice Park’ in Escondido

Posted by on Jan 30, 2016 in Cool Places, Parks, San Diego | 0 comments

  After visiting Grape Day Park with the kids earlier this month, one of our readers mentioned that we need to visit Queen Califia’s Magical Circle in Kit Carson Park in Escondido. The park was just a short drive away from Grape Day Park and the San Diego Zoo Safari Park, and ever since we were told about it, we couldn’t wait to make a drive to Escondido to see it. The park looks like something right out of the movie “Beetlejuice”, and my kids immediately nicknamed Queen Califia’s Magical Circle, Beetlejuice Park. The morning that we planned to visit, unfortunately, the park was closed. My kids were slightly devastated, but they still got an opportunity to see the park through the cracks in the fence. It is only open on the second Saturday of the month from 10...

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The Hilton Garden Inn Old Town San Diego

Posted by on Jan 27, 2016 in Featured, San Diego, Staycation, Travel | 0 comments

 We stayed at the property as a guest While we venture down south to San Diego multiple times a year, we haven’t gone to Old Town for almost ten years. It was while on a staycation visiting Old Town, that my son had his first allergic reaction at the age of two, almost lost his life, and we have never returned until recently. When we heard the news of the Hilton Garden Inn opening their beautiful new property right in the heart of Old Town San Diego, we felt conflicted at first about whether we should return. We made the decision that there is just too much culture and history that we are keeping away from our kids by never bringing them to Old Town, so we made the choice to book a getaway. We parked our car at...

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Visit a Real Oasis Camel Dairy Farm in San Diego

Posted by on Jan 22, 2016 in Cool Places, San Diego | 0 comments

  The Oasis Camel Dairy Farm has been on my bucket list to visit for many years. It is only open to the public on select days, and the days that they are open have usually conflicted with our kids busy weekend schedules. This past weekend, we finally had a day free when the farm was open, so we planned a visit along with our kids grandparents. The drive took a little longer than we had anticipated. The farm was almost as far as Julian but was well worth the long drive. They are open to the public starting at 1 pm and the show is at 1:30 pm. We arrived just in time for the show, and so glad that we did not miss it; it was one of the biggest highlights of our visit. We had paid...

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Epic Grape Day Park in Escondido

Posted by on Jan 2, 2016 in Featured, Parks, San Diego, Travel | 2 comments

  I love to explore new parks with my kids. I have had a visit to the Grape Day Park in Escondido on my bucket list for a couple of years and finally decided that this is the year to check it off my list. When we were planning a winter staycation to San Diego, our family got up a little bit earlier than we planned to have a detour to Grape Day Park on our way to San Diego. Well..the detour continued as we checked off some more items on my bucket list by also doing the mining tour in Julian. The park was pretty easy to find and is a perfect stop while on your way to the San Diego Zoo Safari Park (it is not too far away). There is plenty of parking on the street,...

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Cabrillo National Monument in San Diego

Posted by on Sep 16, 2015 in National Parks, San Diego, Travel | 0 comments

  While we were staying at the Kona Kai Resort in San Diego, the kids noticed a beautiful lighthouse on the bluff that overlooked the waters surrounding the resort. Their curiosity continued as they began researching the lighthouse on Google during dinner at Vessel Restaurant. What I somehow never realized is that the lighthouse was located at the Cabrillo National Park and is home to the historic Cabrillo National Monument. Excited to explore this National Park that is so close to our home, we woke up early in the morning to explore the National Park. Admission to the National Park is $5 (cash only). Before entering the park, we paid our respects to the many fallen men and women of our military at the Fort Rosecrans National Cemetery. Once we were inside of the National Park, we discovered that...

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Spruce Street Suspension Bridge in San Diego

Posted by on Sep 14, 2015 in San Diego, Travel | 0 comments

  After exploring the historical Quince Street Bridge in San Diego, the kids were in for a big treat when we arrived at the Spruce Street Suspension Bridge. The bridge was a little hard to find in a residential neighborhood at first, but was well worth the search. Where the start of the bridge is located.. We parked our car and walked over to the suspension bridge that was built in 1912. The 375-foot steel bridge would bounce and sway while we walked across it (It was a little frightening for me at first). Once we were 1/2 way across the bridge, we got to see amazing views of San Diego, and my boys loved jumping up and down as they walked across it. The bridge is located in Banker’s Hill at the corner of 1st Avenue and Spruce...

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Quince Street Bridge in San Diego

Posted by on Sep 14, 2015 in San Diego, Travel | 1 comment

  While spending the weekend with the kids in San Diego, I took them to see the historic Quince Street Bridge for the first time. I wanted the kids to experience some of the history of San Diego during our visit, and not just the beautiful beaches. The bridge was built in 1905 and is one of the last remaining trestle bridges in San Diego. Guests visiting the bridge can see panoramic views of San Diego while walking across the historic landmark. At the top of the bridge is a little free public library where guests can “leave a book and take a book.” The bridge is HIGH! I am deathly afraid of heights and barely made it 1/2 across the bridge before panicking from being able to see the drop below through the cracks of the wood. The...

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Follow the Yellow Brick Road to the Munchkin House in La Jolla

Posted by on Sep 10, 2015 in Featured, San Diego, Travel | 0 comments

  While spending so much time in La Jolla this summer, we got wind of the news that there was a “Munchkinland” build on the La Jolla hillside in the early 1930’s. Guess what? One confirmed Munchkin house remains!! During our last trip to the San Diego area this summer, we added the house to our GPS to see for ourselves how small the house actually is in real life. We drove up a small windy street to the top of the hillside where we discovered the adorable house. There was no parking, and signs warning of tow-away, so we had to make our visit quick. My giant suburban took up the entire road as we jumped out of the car to check out the house in a flash. It is cuter in real life than we could have...

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Exploring La Jolla Sea Caves with Everyday California

Posted by on Sep 6, 2015 in Cool Places, San Diego, Staycation, Travel | 0 comments

 We visited as a guest of the venue After visiting the Holy Jim Cave in La Jolla last month, I couldn’t wait to plan a return visit to explore the La Jolla sea caves via the water. The one company that stood out to me amongst the others in the area was Everyday California. They share the same passion for preserving the ocean sealife and educating the community on the importance of our eco-system. We reserved our tickets in advance and stayed the night in La Jolla at the La Valencia. It was the perfect Mother/Daughter staycation overnight getaway. After a relaxing night in La Jolla, we woke up early in the morning and had breakfast at the Shorehouse Kitchen, which is directly next door to Everyday California. After my daughter and I had enjoyed a delicious breakfast, we...

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Exploring the La Jolla Sea Caves – Sunny Jim Cave

Posted by on Jul 23, 2015 in Featured, San Diego, Staycation, Travel | 1 comment

  I’ve kept seeing an online discount for kayaking into the La Jolla Sea Caves for years and decided to be spontaneous by surprising the kids with a visit for the first time this afternoon. The kids and I jumped into the car and made our way down the 5 freeway to La Jolla where we were about to embark on the most memorable day trip of our summer. One of the most popular ways to visit the sea caves is via kayaks, but since I was with the kids alone, I didn’t want to attempt to kayak without another adult to help ensure the kids were safe on the water. There is one place that families can visit the sea caves without water access, and it is hidden inside of a small store on the La Jolla Shores...

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Dining In the Vineyards at Welk Resorts and Spa in San Diego

Posted by on Jul 7, 2015 in Dining, Featured, San Diego, Travel | 0 comments

 We attended as a guest of the resort Before there was Donny and Marie, even before there was Sonny and Cher… there was Lawrence Welk. the legendary host of his own self named variety show, which launched in 1951 and aired for three decades. While best known as an entertainer and big band he also became the owner of what is now Welk Resorts and Spa in the early 80’s. Recently, we were invited to dine “under the stars” in the Lawrence Welk Vineyard in Escondido at the Welk Resorts and Spa and celebrate Welk’s new craft beer and wines produced in collaboration with partners Iron Fist Brewing Co. and Belle Marie Winery. A stay at one of the resort’s villas following the tasting was included in the invitation, thankfully! Join us on a photo tour of his resort...

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Mission San Antonio de Pala

Posted by on Jun 29, 2015 in California Missions, Featured, San Diego, Travel | 0 comments

  While having a little weekend getaway in San Diego, we stopped at the beautiful Mission San Antonio de Pala. The mission is very close to the Pala casino and is only accessible by a small dirt road. When we pulled off the main road to visit this hidden gem, our children were amazed by the beauty of this mission. It was founded in 1816 by Fr. Antonio Peyri. It was very prosperous and received more than 1300 Indian converts until the beginning of its decline after the secularization by the Mexican government in 1846. Partially restored in 1903, the restoration of the original quadrangle was complete in 1959. The mission is the only one of the original California missions still ministering to Native American People. (source: Mission San Antonio De Pala) The mission is gorgeous and full of...

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