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Summer Dive-In Movie nights at Fashion Island Hotel

Posted by on Jul 24, 2018 in Events, Featured, Summer | 0 comments

  Friday nights are Summer Dive-In Movie nights at Fashion Island Hotel – the stylish, luxury SoCal coastal hotel oozing with relaxed hospitality and atmosphere. Silver screen favorites start at sundown when dates, friends and families pull up a chaise lounge poolside or get comfy on their own inflatable pool floaties to view Luke Skywalker, Mowgli, Thor, the Black Widow, Emma Stone, Ryan Gosling, Lupita Nyong’o and other unforgettable characters and stars under the stars. Popcorn, movie snacks, cocktails and other beverages are available to purchase for sipping and crunching. Cost is $10 for locals and free for hotel guests. To sweeten this poolside cinema experience, overnight guests can enjoy the benefits of Fashion Island Hotel’s Seas The Summer package, which features 15% off their room, 15% off dining for two and a $15 Market Place credit. Summer Dive-In...

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Cinépolis Summer Kids Movie Series

Posted by on Jun 1, 2018 in Entertainment, Events, Film, Summer | 0 comments

  The Cinépolis Summer Kids Series is back and for the first time ever, debuting at all Cinépolis Luxury Cinema locations. Occurring every Tuesday at 10am, now through August 14, guests can enjoy $1 movie tickets at Cinépolis USA theaters and $3 movie tickets at Cinépolis Luxury Cinema theaters for special screenings of their favorite animated movie. All summer movies are suited for the entire family, with a G or PG rating. Groups and events are available at participating locations with 48hrs notice. A full list of movies and dates below: • “The Boss Baby”- June 12 • “The Angry Birds Movie” – June 19 • “Smurfs: The Lost Village” – June 26 • “The Emoji Movie” – July 3 • “Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs” – July 10 • “The Lego Ninjago Movie” – July 17 •...

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OC Parks Summer Concert Series and Sunset Cinema film series

Posted by on May 31, 2018 in Events, Summer | 0 comments

  The County of Orange and OC Parks are pleased to present the annual OC Parks Summer Concert Series and Sunset Cinema film series, with events kicking off in June. Enjoy summer nights at your favorite regional parks with free concerts and movie screenings in a family-friendly atmosphere. June films include The Jungle Book, The Lion King, and Guardians of the Galaxy, and concerts feature Donavon Frankenreiter, and Big Bad Voodoo Daddy. All events will include free parking with food and drink available for purchase. Dates and times vary per series, for more information about summer-long events visit OC Parks Sunset Cinema June Dates Saturdays June 16, 23, 30 from 6 –1 0 p.m. OC Parks Summer Concert Series June Dates Thursdays June 21, 28 from 5 – 8 p.m. OC Parks Sunset Cinema Film Series Carbon Canyon...

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Three Fun Things to do at SeaWorld this Summer

Posted by on Jul 6, 2017 in Events, Giveaways, Holiday, Summer, Theme Parks | 45 comments

 We attended as a guest of SeaWorld Some of my favorite memories as a child were spent at SeaWorld San Diego. When my children were little, we would visit SeaWorld on a regular basis until I felt a lot of the pressures from friends and family to cease going to the theme park because of the negative documentary that was released. Unfortunately, I stopped bringing my children to SeaWorld for many years without taking the time to consider all the conservation and animal rescue efforts that SeaWorld does for animals. I brought my children to SeaWorld San Diego for the first time that they could remember last year, and went on a behind-the-scenes tour where I learned all about the good that SeaWorld does for animals. They have a massive rescue and rehabilitation facility where they care for sick/injured...

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Ecology Center 2017 Summer Farm Lab Camp

Posted by on Jun 5, 2017 in Camp, Green Living, Summer | 0 comments

  Farm Lab Campers will dig deep into food and farm life in the season when the garden really comes alive. Activities include seasonal planting, chicken care, compost exploration, fort building, eco-crafts, and harvesting and cooking from the garden. All activities at The Ecology Center Farm Lab Camp revolve around our core initiatives of GROW, WATER, EAT, and MAKE. Taking place on a 1-acre teaching facility nestled next to a 28-acre organic farm, campers will have an unparalleled view of the farm process and what it means to grow from seed-to- harvest. Summer Farm Lab Camp Session 1 Ages 5-6 June 27-30 // Tue – Fri, 9 am – 1 pm Eco Farm Lab Camp Session 2 Ages 7-9 July 18 – 21 // Tue – Fri, 9 am – 1 pm Eco Farm Lab Camp Session 3 Ages...

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Segerstrom 2017 Movie Mondays Series

Posted by on Jun 5, 2017 in Events, Summer | 0 comments

  One of the best ways to create summer memories with your children is to take them to an outdoor summer movie night. There are so many outdoor summer movie nights happening around Orange County, and The Segerstrom Center for the Arts Movie Mondays series is one of the best. Families can enjoy food from local food trucks and then watch a classic film on the side of the building. This year, they have one of the best movie lineups yet! The Segerstrom Center for the Arts kicks off its 2017 Movie Mondays series with beloved movies from five decades: 1961’s Breakfast at Tiffany’s on July 10 1978’s The Wiz on July 17 1988’s Stand and Deliver on July 24 1990’s Edward Scissorhands on July 31 2003’s School of Rock on August 7. The showings are FREE, and, for...

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An All-New Knott’s Soak City Water Park

Posted by on May 31, 2017 in Events, Knott's Berry Farm, Summer, Theme Parks | 0 comments

 We attended as a guest of the venue Summer is officially here and it is the perfect time to get outside and soak up the summer sun at Knott’s Soak City. Last week, I got the kids into their new swimsuits and brought them for an unforgettable day of play at Knott’s Soak City. We visited on the grand reopening, and families were lined up at the front gates, eager to play when we arrived. Knott’s Soak City has expanded by over two acres, and has completely transformed to become a premier water oasis. There are new water slides, cabanas, and a reenvisioned cafe called Longboards Grill. Since I have toddlers, my family spent most of the day in the kiddie area called Gremmie Lagoon. There were mini water slides, splash pads, and other interactive water features. It was...

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Four Fresh Summer Snack Ideas

Posted by on May 22, 2017 in Family, Giveaways, Health, Summer | 12 comments

 This is a sponsored post for SheSpeaks/Rubbermaid® The weather has warmed up, and summer has finally arrived. Parents will be putting the backpacks away for the season and replacing it with a beach bag to spend summer days down at the beach. The biggest struggle that all parents have is with finding fresh new summer snacks to pack in the beach bag. The most important thing when packing summertime snacks is to use containers that are 100% leak-proof! We have all been there when we pack a snack in a cheap plastic food container, just to get to the beach to have our bag covered in food. The one product that I have found to keep my kid’s snacks airtight and leak-proof is the Rubbermaid BRILLIANCE containers. They have innovative latches that keep my kid’s snacks exactly where I...

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Last Chance to Power Up at Yogurtland

Posted by on Aug 29, 2016 in Dining, Family, Summer | 0 comments

 We visited as a guest of the venue Summer is slowly drifting away, and that means that the Nintendo-inspired flavors at Yogurtland will also slowly disappear. Our children have had the best time collecting the Nintendo themed spoons and savoring the delicious limited-time flavors at Yogurtland this summer. Some of our favorite summer memories have been made at our local Yogurtland. All of the Yogurtland locations have been decorated with photos featuring our favorite classic characters including Mario, Luigi, Princess Peach, Yoshi, and more. The best part are the flavors like Mario’s Chocolate Gelato, Luigi’s White Chocolate Pistachio and Toad’s Rocky Road. To expand the fun experience outside of the store, Yogurtland is also hosting a sweepstake that offers the best treats summer has to offer. By visiting, fans of Nintendo, Yogurtland and winning cool prizes can enter...

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Summer Fun Continues at Newport Dunes

Posted by on Aug 22, 2016 in Events, Summer | 0 comments

  The kids might be headed back to school, but the fun still continues at the Newport Dunes Waterfront Resort. Currently, the Dunes is extending its summer festivities through September. Moe B’s Watersports Park, featuring a number of inflatable aquatic attractions including rock climbing walls, icebergs and water trampolines, will remain open Saturdays and Sundays in September. Cost is $25 for 2-hour sessions (special pricing is available for RV guests). Also, rentals of paddleboats, pedal boats, kayaks, hydro bikes and Duffy’s electric boats will be available then. The Dunes’ Moe B’s Radiant Rides, nighttime stand-up paddleboard adventures held on Fridays and Saturdays (except Labor Day weekend when it will be open on Saturday & Sunday) will continue through September. Cost is $30 per person and includes a glow accessory. Also, the resort’s in-house recreational rentals company, Pirate Coast Paddle,...

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Family Fun at the Ventura County Fair

Posted by on Aug 9, 2016 in Events, Featured, Summer | 0 comments

 Sponsored Growing up in Orange County, I’ve only attended our local OC Fair. This year, I wanted to visit a different local summer fair, so I surprised my kids with news that we were going to take the train to have fun at the Ventura County Fair. The Ventura County Fair is just steps away from the ocean, and I couldn’t wait to experience the fair with the benefit of cool ocean breezes. With Amtrak having a station that stops right at the entrance to the fair, we couldn’t go wrong by taking the train vs. driving. The night before we went, I booked my train tickets online. We arrived at the train station a few minutes before our train was scheduled to leave, and then we were off. It was my kids first time riding on a train,...

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5 Ways to Teach Kids to be Curious this Summer

Posted by on Aug 1, 2016 in Family, Parenting, Summer | 0 comments

  It’s so important for students to maintain their innate curiosity as they get older and progress through the school system. Being curious and imaginative are two great qualities that younger children generally have without any prompting. We are born curious and want to know about the world. In some cases, older students become less curious as time goes by because they are focused on the tasks in front of them. Summer is an excellent time for elementary school students to maintain or reignite the curiosity that encourages them to ask why things are a certain way or explore their environment. Asking why can lead to advanced problem solving later in life and can help students both academically and socially. So how can kids be encouraged to stay curious this summer? Explore the outdoor environment Kids spend most of...

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Best Places for Summer Treats in OC

Posted by on Jul 31, 2016 in Cool Places, Dining, Family, Holiday, Summer | 1 comment

  One of the best parts about summer is taking the kids for refreshing sweet treats. From ice cream to cookies to milk tea, these are some of the best places to take the kids for summer treats in Orange County. Honey & Butter Irvine Spectrum Center 633 Spectrum Center Dr Irvine, CA 92618 Honey & Butter has been our favorite place for summer treats this year. They not only have a super cute store, but they also make the most adorable themed macarons. We’ve had a Winnie-the-Pooh macaron and Pokemon macaron paired with homemade ice cream. I recommend coming early for their themed macaron’s because they are selling out fast – especially during the summer. Dad’s Donuts 318 Marine Ave Newport Beach, CA 92662 Nothing tastes more like summer than a frozen banana or Balboa bar from Dad’s...

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Five Best SoCal Drive-In Theaters

Posted by on Jul 29, 2016 in Cool Places, Family, Featured, Summer | 0 comments

  Some of my favorite childhood memories were watching the latest summer blockbuster hit out of the back of my parent’s station wagon at the drive-in theater on Beach Boulevard. Years later, that was the last drive-in in Orange County to close, but many remained open in Southern California for us to relive the same memories with our children. A couple are not too far outside of Orange County, and it makes for a great end of summer family night out. Have fun creating movie memories at one of these SoCal Drive-in Theaters. Mission Tiki 10798 Ramona Ave Montclair, CA 91763 Families can see two movies back-to-back at Mission Tiki. They are open seven days a week, and we recommend arriving early on weekends (this is a popular location). Adults are $9, and kids ages 5-9 are $1....

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Get Your Groove and Grub on at Pete’s Sunset Grille

Posted by on Jul 26, 2016 in Entertainment, Events, Music, Summer | 0 comments

  This summer, get your groove and your grub on at a Surf City hotspot Pete’s Sunset Grille at Hyatt Regency Huntington Beach, with and enticing selection of food and free live concerts every Friday and Saturday evening from 7:00 – 10:00pm. The beachy restaurant is bringing down the house with live rock, hip-hop and blues musicians, and serving up foodie fun with Friday night Taco Buffets and Saturday BBQ the whole family will enjoy, now through Labor Day weekend. Food Selections Include: Friday Night Taco Buffet $19.95 adults $9.95 kids (ages 5-12) Entrees Steak Picadillo con Papas Chili Relleno with Ranchera Sauce Chicken Asada Sides Arroz Verde Frijoles Charros Dessert Warm Churros with Cinnamon- Sugar Saturday Night BBQ $19.95 adults $9.95 kids (ages 5-12) Entrees Southern Fried Chicken Baby Back Dry Rubbed Ribs Whiskey Barrel BBQ Beef Sides...

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chefschool Summer Camp at The Hood Kitchen

Posted by on Jul 14, 2016 in Camp, Family, Summer | 0 comments

  Do your kids love to cook? Have they shown an interest in culinary arts? Then sign them up for a week at one chefschool’s interactive summer camps. The summer camp is led by a trained chef at the popular Hood Kitchen in Costa Mesa. The week-long, half-day camps offer aspiring young chefs the oppportunity to have fun, learn real-life cooking skills and techniques. All of the classes use fresh local and seasonal ingredients to make “real” food with no packaged or processed ingredients. Camps are filling up fast so hurry and sign-up today! International Each day in this exciting chefschool class, we’ll explore classic cooking from a different country, while learning basic cooking skills. This summer, the focus will be on the foods of France, Italy, Greece, Thailand, and Mexico. Recipes include onion soup gratinee, chocolate soufflé, spanakopita,...

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Creating Summer Family Memories at Hotel Irvine

Posted by on Jul 14, 2016 in Events, Summer | 0 comments

 We visited as a guest of Hotel Irvine Hotel Irvine is one of our favorite family staycation destinations and is hosting one of the best summer movie nights in OC at their plush backyard garden. Hotel Irvine has a lush backyard where the outdoor movies take place, and families are made to feel like they are at home during the events. Children can run around, play lawn games, and parents can sit back and relax after a long summer day in the sun. The resort makes it easy for busy families to attend the movie night by taking the stress away from worrying about what to feed the kids. There are two meal options during their movie nights. You can pre-order a meal for your family and pick it up the night of the event between 7-8:30 pm. They...

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Camp Out Loud This Summer!

Posted by on Jul 6, 2016 in Camp, Family, Summer | 0 comments

 Sponsored Has the summer boredom started to set in? Are you looking for something fun and exciting for your kids to do this summer? Your local YMCA is here to help! Summer Day Camp and Specialty Camps at the YMCA are fun, action-packed adventure filled with sports, outdoor activities, field trips, and specialty clubs that keep your children engaged in learning during their summer break. Summer Day Camps run through August 10th with engaging weekly themes and field trips like: Boomers, Planetarium, Zoo, Scooters Jungle, Knott’s Berry Farm, Pump It Up, and more. Weekly specialty camps are available at YMCA fitness facilities and provide instruction and education in sports like volleyball, soccer, basketball and swim, science, arts and crafts, and more! With 50+ locations to choose from across Orange County, YMCA Summer Camps are convenient and affordable. Find your...

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2016 OC Fair Ticket Giveaway

Posted by on Jun 30, 2016 in Events, Giveaways, OC Fair, Summer | 41 comments

  It is time for our favorite summer event to start – The OC Fair! Our family has created some of our favorite summer memories at the OC Fair, and we can’t wait to create more memories again this year. The 2016 OC Fair will happen from July 15th through August 14th, and will be bigger and better than ever. There will be thrilling rides, delicious fair food, and activities galore. Families will need to visit the OC Fair multiple times to experience everything that the family event has to offer. The OC Fair hours are Wednesday through Friday from noon to midnight, Saturday and Sunday from 10 am to midnight, and is closed on Monday and Tuesday. Tickets are $10 (general), $7 Senior (6+), $7 Youth (6-12), and children under the age of five are complimentary. If your...

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Five Best Places for SUP in Orange County

Posted by on Jun 19, 2016 in Best of OC, Featured, Summer | 1 comment

  What’s SUP? The hot weather is what’s up. Wondering what is the best way to cool down and still keep your kids active in Orange County? Stand up paddleboarding (SUP). There are many places to rent equipment and take your kids out on the water, however, these are the best places for SUP in Orange County. Newport Dunes Waterfront Resort 1131 Back Bay Drive Newport Beach, CA 92660 The dunes is a perfect place to introduce your kids to SUP. They have a variety of water sports available including kayaks, hydro bikes, canoes, and SUP. The rates for SUP at Newport Dunes is $20 an hour or $60 for four hours. The water is as smooth as glass which is perfect for young kids first trying the sport. Newport Aquatic Center 1 Whitecliffs Dr Newport Beach, CA...

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LA Lifeguard Summer Beach Water Safety Tips

Posted by on Jun 12, 2016 in Autos, Family, Featured, Holiday, Hot Topics, Parenting, Summer | 0 comments

 We partnered with Toyota to attend this free community event Did you know that drowning is the leading cause of injury-related death among children ages 1-4? Our Southern California Lifeguards are hard at work this summer helping to keep children safe and saving lives. Toyota has partnered with the LA Lifeguards by providing them with essential tools they need to save lives – durable trucks. For the kick-off of summer, Toyota and the LA Lifeguards held a community event at the Manhattan Beach pier where they shared some water safety tips and offered demonstrations for families visiting the area. We put a 2016 Toyota 4Runner to the test and drove it to the event where my children learned a lot from the LA Lifeguards. Along with families visiting the pier, my children got a chance to sit in the...

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Hotel Irvine Summer Movie Nights in the Backyard

Posted by on Jun 8, 2016 in Events, Summer | 0 comments

  Summer lifestyle living in Orange County means flip flops, warm evenings, outdoor dining, leisure time with family and friends, cool drinks and Wow sunsets. Hotel Irvine’s popular Summer Movie Nights in The Backyard is back! The hit from last year, movie-goers can ditch the indoor movie screen for gorgeous SoCal summer nights, grab their blankets or beach chairs and stake out the best spot they can find on the lawn. Featuring classic blockbuster favorites on a 16-foot giant outdoor movie screen, it’s the perfect night for families, friends or even an impromptu date night. Guests can pre-order a picnic from Marketplace or enjoy the chef’s outdoor buffet offering freshly prepared burgers, hot dogs, BBQ chicken, summer sides and staple movie snacks like ice cream, nachos, popcorn and favorite movie candies. Wine and cocktails are available, along with non-alcoholic...

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2016 OC Fair Discounts and Deals

Posted by on Jun 6, 2016 in Events, Featured, Holiday, Summer | 0 comments

  The OC Fair is offering many ways to save at the 2016 event July 15-August 14, 2016. The discounts start opening day with the return of Free Opening Hour featuring free admission and parking for everyone the first hour on Friday, July 15, 2016 from Noon-1 p.m. Daily Deals Super Pass: The OC Fair’s season pass is a great option for Fairgoers to access all the Fair they can bear for one affordable price. The season pass grants the passholder 23-day access to the 2016 Fair and discounts on concert tickets for select events at the Pacific Amphitheatre, The Hangar and Action Sports Arena. The 2016 Super Pass is available for General $35, Senior (60+) $28 and Youth (6-12) $28. The 2016 Super Pass can be purchased online at or from the on-site Box Office. Military Get...

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Free Outdoor Summer Movies in Orange County

Posted by on Jun 1, 2016 in Events, Featured, Holiday, Summer | 0 comments

  One of the best things about summer is packing a picnic dinner and bringing your family to create unforgettable memories together at a free outdoor summer movie night in Orange County. We have compiled a detailed list of free outdoor summer movies happening in every Orange County city in 2016. Aliso Viejo Fridays at Grand Park. Movies begin at dusk July 8th – Minions (PG) July 22nd – Inside Out (PG) August 5th – The Peanuts Movie (G) August 19th – Back to the Future (PG) Anaheim Pearson Park at 401 N. Lemon Street (Lemon & Sycamore) in downtown Anaheim. August 12th Inside Out August 19th Minions Brea Arovista Park Amphitheatre at 7pm All movies shown outdoors on our gigantic screen. Bring your blankets and low-back beach chairs for a night of family fun. Delectable movie munchies and...

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Top OC Splash Pads

Posted by on Aug 11, 2015 in Holiday, Summer | 1 comment

 With summer officially here, splash pads are a part of our daily “fun” agenda. So, when your family is looking to cool off, have fun – without breaking the bank, here are some splash pad favorites. Sigler Park Splash Pad 7200 Plaza Street Westminster, CA 92683 714-895-2860 These non-stop re-circulated water fountains will be sure to delight your children on those blistering hot days. Bright colors and delightful characters make this park a must visit for summer fun. This park also has a playground for young and older kids. Open with limited hours May 23 – September 27. Open daily June 22 – September 27. Regular water play hours are 12:00 – 5:00 p.m. On July 22 hours will be limited to 2:00 – 5:00 p.m. Pioneer Park 10250 Pioneer Rd Tustin, CA 92782 714-573-3000 Due to the drought,...

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Tween Guide to going to the OC Fair

Posted by on Aug 8, 2015 in Events, Featured, Summer | 0 comments

 We attended as a guest of the OC Fair If you are a tween and going to the OC Fair with your older brother, younger brother, older sister, etc, then you will want to know these few tips on what to do when you are there. I have two brothers (one older, and one younger) and we had a blast this year at the OC Fair. Rides If you are not into roller coasters then they have plenty of rides that are not scary or high. I personally like big and scary rides. If you like those kind of rides they have a lot of those. With my little brother I like to go on the rides he is tall enough to go on, and with my older brother I like to go on the big scary rides. If...

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5 SoCal Water-themed Family Day Trips

Posted by on Aug 5, 2015 in Featured, Holiday, Summer | 0 comments

  At this point in the summer many parents are running out of things to do with their kids. Summer is a great time to explore educational activities outside of the classroom environment. As August is upon us, the weather gets hotter and many kids prefer activities revolving around the cooling atmosphere of the ocean or other water-related activities. Orange County and the surrounding areas offer some great activities to beat the heat, and learn a thing or two, this August. Birch Aquarium The Birch Aquarium is located in beautiful La Jolla, CA (a bit of a drive for residents of Orange County but well worth it). The aquarium is small enough for young kids to navigate but offers a look into some fabulous under water species such as jelly fish. Aquariums offer a chance for young kids to...

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Unique Summer Movie Nights at Rancho Las Lomas

Posted by on Jul 24, 2015 in Events, Featured, Holiday, Summer | 0 comments

 We attended as a guest Looking for something fun and unique to do with your kids this summer? Rancho Las Lomas is hosting fun summer movie nights that has been one of our favorite events this year. Rancho Las Lomas to home to exotic animals, beautiful grounds, and an outdoor wine/beer tasting garden. Our family packed a picnic dinner, chairs and blankets before driving into Santiago Canyon on Friday night for one of their movie nights. When we arrived, we were greeted by a valet who made arriving easy for our family. We checked in at the front desk and put our chairs and blankets down on the grass in front of the giant outdoor movie screen. Once we were set-up for the evening, we walked around the property with our children where they admired the tigers, zebras, and...

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Five Tips To Help Cure Mid-Summer Boredom

Posted by on Jul 22, 2015 in Family, Featured, Holiday, Parenting, Summer | 0 comments

  I’ve always found it interesting to hear children complain about school and long for the lazy days of summer, but when summer comes, the excitement of it all can last about a month before you start hearing I’M BORED! I once heard a saying that people who are bored are usually boring people. I don’t think that’s the case with our children, I just think they sometimes need permission, encouragement, and maybe a hint of an idea to jump start those creative juices so they can cure their own mid-summer boredom. Here are some fun ways to respond to summer time boredom that will help your child go from feeling limited to limitless.
 1) Can’t afford to send your child on an expensive week long summer camp? Encourage your child to create their own at home.  Help...

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Five Orange County Sizzling Summer Savings

Posted by on Jul 2, 2015 in Deals, Family, Featured, Shopping, Summer | 0 comments

 Sponsored Keeping the kids busy during the summer months can often be expensive for families. LivingSocial has always been my go-to place for discount tickets, dining deals and more so that our family can keep busy and enjoy visiting different places around Orange County during the summer months. These are my top five favorite summer savings that won’t break the family budget, and will help your family to create long lasting summer memories. Lyon Air Museum From military motorcycles — including one that’s half tank — to high-flying airplanes from decades ago, Lyon Air Museum houses some of the rarest aircraft you’ll find. There are also a few cars and military vehicles, which make for one fascinating stroll through this space • $12 ($24 value) for two general admission tickets • $24 ($48 value) for four general admission tickets...

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Summer Reading with Riordan (Giveaway)

Posted by on Jun 17, 2015 in Family, Giveaways, Parenting, Shopping, Summer | 17 comments

 Complimentary books will be received My son loves to read. Everywhere he goes he always has a book in his hands. Rick Riordan is one of his favorite authors, and he has read his books so many times that the binding has broken on many of them. Wondering what series to introduce to your kids this summer? This summer is the perfect time to get your kids excited about reading with the Percy Jackson series. It is also the 10th Anniversary of the book that started it all, “The Lightning Thief.” The series will help your kids imagination soar as Percy takes them on many magical adventures. Whether your kids love to read or are just getting started reading, the Percy Jackson series will inspire them to read more and become lifelong avid readers. To help get your kids...

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Summer Swimming and Safety at Evolution Swim Academy

Posted by on Jun 17, 2015 in Camp, Family, Featured, Summer | 0 comments

 Sponsored Swimming is serious business to Felipe Delgado. As founder of Evolution Swim Academy in Mission Viejo, Delgado has not only dedicated his life to swimming as a two-time Olympian, but he is committed to drowning prevention and water safety for children and adults. “We currently have four seasonal locations where we operate our business. Our partnerships with the Ladera Ranch community, Nellie Gail Ranch community, Rancho Mission Viejo community and the Renaissance ClubSport are very important because through our partnerships, we promote drowning prevention,” explains Delgado. In 2003, he hung up his Olympic goggles to work in the corporate world for several years. As a husband and father of three children, he returned to his first love of swim to establish Evolution Swim Academy in 2005. Flagship Mission Viejo Facility Opens Most recently, Evolution Swim Academy christened its...

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Kids Splash and Play Park at the Renaissance Club Sport Aliso Viejo

Posted by on Jun 12, 2015 in Activities, Holiday, Summer | 0 comments

 We attended as a guest of RCSAV A few weekends ago we were invited to come and check out the all new Kids Splash and Play Park at the Renaissance Club Sport in Aliso Viejo.  The Splash and Play Park has a water jungle gym, kids only pool and a kids safe temperature jacuzzi.  From the second you walk into the area, you are greeted by a lifeguard who sits right directly in front of the kids pool.  The park has vibrate colors and plenty of exciting water  features for your child to play with. The play structure boasts a side by side slide, 2 covered slides, a giant dumping water bucket, playful water rings your little one can run through and  water guns!  The “kid temp” jacuzzi and pool is something I have not experienced with water parks.  My daughter...

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Bowers Museum Camp Kidseum Art and Archaeology

Posted by on Jun 5, 2015 in Camp, Events, Summer | 0 comments

  Bowers Museum in Santa Ana presents Camp Kidseum Art and Archaeology this summer for children ages 6 to 11. Eight five-day camps will be offered at Bowers Kidseum (located at 1802 N. Main St. in Santa Ana), and will be led by professional museum staff archaeologists and art instructors. Each week will focus on a different ancient culture and introduce students to a variety of diverse art and traditions practiced all around the world, so students are encouraged to sign up for multiple camps. Sign up today Camps take place from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m., Monday through Friday. Extended daycare services are available 7:30 a.m.-9:00 a.m. and 3:00-5:30 p.m. every day for a fee of $85/week. Sign-up today online or by calling 714.480.1520! Week 1: Junior Archaeology Monday, June 22–Friday, June 26 | 9:00 a.m.-3:00 p.m. $160...

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Rock On, Rock Freely: The Orange County Summer is Packed with Free Summer Concerts

Posted by on Jun 3, 2015 in Events, Featured, Summer | 0 comments

  One of the coolest things about being a parent is to educate your children in a way that doesn’t feel like education to them. This trick can be relatively easy to do when it comes to music. All it takes is turning on the radio, pushing play on a CD player, or logging into your online streaming service of choice to expose your kids to the wealth of tunes that exist. Taking them to see a concert doesn’t exactly hurt their development of music appreciation, either. If the word “concert” makes you involuntarily clutch your wallet in sheer panic, don’t fret. Orange County has an abundance of free concerts occurring this summer, and they pretty much cover all of musical genres, from modern country and classic Motown to classical, jazz, and other music traditionally found on the left...

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Starry, Starry Cinema: Free Outdoor Movies in Orange County for 2015

Posted by on Jun 3, 2015 in Events, Featured, Holiday, Summer | 0 comments

 There is something inherently blissful about watching a movie outdoors in the summertime. The sound of the film is audible yet not overpowering, thus allowing the natural ambiance of chirping birds or the effects of gusting breezes to be quietly heard. The visuals that are seen on celluloid are accompanied by the twinkle of the darkened heavens. The food and drink that is enjoyed may very well improve upon buckets of popcorn smeared in buttery goo. The temperature is typically just cool enough to make it a convenient reason to huddle close to your family and share a measure of loving warmth. Sure, the films being shown aren’t exactly new – parents with little kids may unwittingly have some of them committed to memory – but that’s totally fine. Nobody ever goes to an outdoor movie in the summer...

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Choosing a Great Summer Camp to Meet your Child’s Needs

Posted by on Jun 3, 2015 in Camp, Summer | 0 comments

  There are many things to think about when selecting a summer camp or summer school program. First off, parents have to consider price, availability, location, and other logistical factors. However, the real difficulty arises when trying to find the right fit for your child’s individual needs and desires. Ideally, a summer camp or summer school program will serve as an educational and social supplement to school. Additionally, summer camp programs serve as a valuable social introduction to the structure and collaboration that will be required in preschool and kindergarten. 

 Sports and coordination

Sports and outdoor camps are a great way to get out the extra energy young children have. In addition, sports camps offer a good opportunity for children to increase their coordination skills. Activities such as soccer and dance will help kids improve their coordination and balance while...

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Summer Activities That Keep Your Child Learning

Posted by on May 29, 2015 in Featured, Summer | 0 comments

  Planning an entertaining and educational summer experience for one’s child can be stressful. Between our own expectations, certain messages we get from the media, and the peer pressure of keeping-up-with-the Joneses, I think that many parents put more pressure on themselves than is necessary when it comes to planning an affordable, fun, safe, and productive summer for their kids. Likewise, our kids are getting hit with those same messages and pressures – especially as they get older, there is a sense that more, bigger, newer, farther, longer, and faster are going to keep them well occupied and happy. But is that really true? Be honest….What are some of the most positive and meaningful moments from your childhood summers? What are some of the summer endeavors that as a kid you or your parents thought were going to be...

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25 Top Summer Movies for Teens

Posted by on May 28, 2015 in Entertainment, Featured, Film, Summer | 0 comments

 Sponsored by Verizon FiOS My household has changed drastically since now having a tween and teenager in our house. The one thing that I’ve noticed is their ability to sleep almost the entire day (if I let them) and that it is hard to pull them away from the television set. As Summer is quickly approaching in just a short couple of weeks, I have put together a Summer Movie list for my teenager to enjoy watching during the “Dog Days of Summer.” The best part is that these movies can be streamed at lightening fast speed using Verizon FiOS service..and I couldn’t think of a better time to upgrade your cable service than the Summertime! While I have been a long time fan of John Hughes films they are the first 80’s films that I introduced to my...

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End of the Year Checklist: 5 Tips for Preparing your Child for Summer

Posted by on May 28, 2015 in Education, Family, Featured, Parenting, Summer | 0 comments

  Most younger children are completely worn out by the middle of June. They want to get out of their chair and into the Ocean (or some other fun outdoor setting) as fast as they can. Summer is a great opportunity for young kids to have a chance to run around, enjoy the sunshine, and spend more time with family; however, it’s also a good time to work on academic issues. 1. Talk with your child’s classroom teacher 

The classroom teacher will have a list of all her students as well as notes about each student’s current academic standing. She will be able to tell each parent if a child needs extra help to catch up during the summer or if they need supplemental learning materials to be prepared for the fall. Most teachers provide a reading list, list...

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Four Healthy Summer Snacks To-Go

Posted by on May 19, 2015 in Family, Health, Summer | 0 comments

 Samples received During the Summer, we spend our days living out of my car. We are always on the go whether going to the beach, park or finding somewhere new to explore. The only downside to living an active lifestyle with your children is not being home throughout the Summer days to prepare healthy snacks. With a child who has severe food allergies, I’ve had to learn how to prep, prepare and pack healthy Summer snacks to-go. Planning is key when packing Summer snacks for your kids. Every Sunday, I go to the store with my healthy snack list and then prepare everything before the week starts. When selecting snacks to-go for the kids, I always try to purchase food that is not perishable. I kept a small plastic bin in the trunk of my car where all the...

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2015 Orange County Vacation Bible School (VBS)

Posted by on May 16, 2015 in Camp, Featured, Summer | 4 comments

   Summer is just weeks away, and it is the best time to start planning your kids Summer camps. Vacation Bible School is a great way to expose your kids to a Summer Camp experience while celebrating a love for the Lord. Vacation Bible Schools tend to fill-up quick, so we recommend 
signing your kids up today. ——————————————————— San Clemente ——————————————————— Pacific Coast Church
Theme: Bible Boot Camp – “Messy Mess Hall Snacks, Untamed Games, High Energy Surprises, Awesome Bible Stories” Date: July 13 – 17   Time: 6:00 – 9:00 p.m.
Age: 2nd grade – 6th Grade (entering Fall 2014)
Early Registration Cost $70.00 (5/15 – 5/31) Late Registration Cost $85 (6/1 – 6/20) ——————————————————— Pacific Coast Church
Theme: Everest Discovery Day Camp Date: August 10 -14  Time: 9:00 – 12:00 p.m.
Age: 4 years – 2nd grade (as of Sept. 2015)

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The Dragon Institute Kids Kung Fu Program Creates Well-Rounded Children

Posted by on May 12, 2015 in Camp, Education, Family, Featured, Parenting, Summer | 1 comment

 Partnered Story The martial art of kung fu is not about showing off or winning trophies. It’s about learning how to protect yourself. It is a vital practice for children to learn, since the scourge of bullying is still an unfortunate reality from grade school to high school. Yet kung fu also goes beyond the realm of self-defense for kids. It serves as an interactive way to hone skills that will serve them well later in life – skills like discipline and focus, confidence and ambition. This belief is the cornerstone of the Kids Kung Fu classes at The Dragon Institute. It is a key reason why they have been recognized as the “Best Martial Arts in Orange County” by OC City Voter for four consecutive years, as well as the Dana Point Times 2014 Golden Lantern Award for...

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Kaleidoscope Kaleido-Kids Summer Time Fun Series

Posted by on May 7, 2015 in Events, Summer | 0 comments

  Kaleidoscope brings back its Kaleido-Kids Summer Time Fun Series co-sponsored by Jump ‘n Jammin this summer. The free series of activities for kids is every Tuesday from June 23 to August 18, from 11:30 am to 12:30 pm. The series culminates with a day of fun at the Kaleido-Kids Mini Carnival benefitting Make A Wish® Orange County and Inland Empire on Monday, August 24 from 11:30 am to 2:30 pm. The Kaleido-Kids activities will be: Tues., June 23 Dance & Fun Party Tues., June 30 Magician Tues., July 7 Reptile Show Tues., July 14 Comedy Juggling Show Tues., July 21 Ventriloquist Tues., July 28 Cartoon Drawing Fun Tues., August 4 Lego Playtime Tues., August 11 Interactive Percussion / Music Tues., August 18 Pirate Magic Show The Kaleido-Kids Carnival will be Monday, August 24, from 11:30 am to 2:30...

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2014 Labor Day Events in Orange County

Posted by on Aug 18, 2014 in Events, Featured, Summer | 0 comments

  We are always sad to say “Good-bye” to summer, but Labor Day weekend in Orange County is always packed full of fun family-friendly events for your family to enjoy. We have searched high and low, and put together the most in-depth guide of the 2014 Labor Day events in Orange County for your family! Bon Voyage Summer! Orange Street Fair 112 E Chapman Ave. Orange, CA 92866 Friday, August 29th 2014 5pm to 10pm Alcohol Sales: 5pm-9pm Saturday, August 30th 2014 10am to 10pm Alcohol Sales: 10am-9pm Sunday, August 31st 2014 10am to 10pm Alcohol Sales: Noon-9pm The Orange Street Fair is one of the most popular Labor Day events in Orange County. It draws families from around the Southland to enjoy music, fun, crafts, food, drinks and more throughout the weekend. Parking is guaranteed to be...

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Five Summer Organization Strategies

Posted by on Aug 16, 2014 in Family, Parenting, Summer | 0 comments

 Summer is not just a time of outdoor adventuring, vacationing and lazy days. For a Type A personality such as myself, it also means something else: organization. I may have sounded a tad giddy when I said the “o” word, but with my kids being home during summer, I often feel buried by toys, summer crafts and tornado-like bedrooms. Not to mention the overload of school artwork and papers that have accumulated from the previous year. So, over the years, I’ve treated summer much like my “spring cleaning.” It’s also the perfect time to get organized before the busy school year starts again. But where to start? 1. Pick one area to organize at a time. For most of us, the thought of tackling an area that is in dire need of organization is a daunting task. Thus, we...

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Celebrate Summer with a Family Beach Party

Posted by on Aug 4, 2014 in Birthday Parties, Family, Summer | 0 comments

 Review product received You can’t go to the beach without making it a party! There are many ways to make a trip to the beach a celebration, and it can be as simple as ordering a special treat for the kids. Every time that we plan a trip to the beach, I try to plan something special to make the visit unique and special for the kids. One of the sites that I have enjoyed using to make our beach days fun this summer is I had used them for invitations when inviting friends, DIY, recipes and to order special treats like the beach themed cookies I ordered this past week. When the cookies arrived at the front door, the kids screamed with excitement about our next trip to the beach so they could have the delicious buttercream...

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Aftercare Sunburn Tips

Posted by on Aug 2, 2014 in Family, Holiday, Hot Topics, Parenting, Summer | 2 comments

 The red. The painful. The tender. Every summer, it seems like at least one family member ends up with a sunburn – usually in the upper part of the shoulders and back. I’m referring to the infamous sunburn. Besides the obvious prevention steps, such as avoiding the sun altogether, what are the most effective ways to relieve a sunburn? Phon H. Vuong, physician assistant, Coast Dermatology and Laser Center in Laguna Beach offers these important aftercare sunburn steps for her patients: COOL WATER Cool skin by running cold water over the affected site. APPLY A TOPICAL Apply either cortisone cream or Aloe Vera (both over the counter). Chill the cream in the refrigerator for more effective relief. GET SOME R&R Make sure to rehydrate and rest. According to Vuong one of the biggest mistakes people make when it comes...

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Summer Sleep Tips

Posted by on Jul 27, 2014 in Parenting, Summer | 0 comments

 Our summer days are full of sunny days at the beach, pool, sidewalk chalking, barbecues and riding bikes until sundown. Even though this unstructured season is fun, it can also be a time that bedtime routines fall by the wayside, and children become less rested. According to Dr. Lori Zaremski, a Manhattan Beach psychologist, “It is important that children get their sleep needs met in order to maintain good health and to be ‘ready to learn’ when the new school year begins.” When possible, Zaremski recommends families try to enjoy summer without deviating drastically from the school year bedtime rules. The United States National Sleep Foundation, recommends most children ages five to 12 need 10-11 hours of sleep and most teens need 8.5 to 9.25 hours of sleep each night for optimal cognitive functioning. Adequate sleep is associated with...

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Ultimate Summer Adventure with Kaleido-Kids

Posted by on Jul 24, 2014 in Events, Family, Featured, Summer | 0 comments

 We attended as a guest of Kaleidoscope Center My kids are in the middle of their summer break which means that we’ve gone through most of their summer bucket list and have gone back a few times on some of the items.  The other day I heard the dreaded “we’re bored”, ugh!  So what can I do to entertain my kids for more than an hour of time and not have to drive all around town?  The Kaleidoscope Center in Mission Viejo has the solution to my problem and it’s called Kaleido-Kids Summertime Fun Series, I call it Adventure Tuesday.  If you haven’t already heard about  the Summertime Fun Series then let me give you the 411. Adventure One starts at 10:00am with Regal Theaters.   Regal has their Regal Summer Movie Express which features family movies (rated G or...

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Washable Sidewalk Paint vs. Sidewalk Chalk

Posted by on Jul 17, 2014 in Family, Shopping, Summer | 0 comments

 Review product received My kids love sidewalk chalk. We go through multiple packages throughout the summer where they express their creativity on the street outside our front door. This year, RoseArt decided to send us some samples of their RoseArt washable sidewalk chalk paint to hear our thoughts. The package comes in a set of two colors, that pairs nicely together. I’ll be honest that I brought the kids out in the front yard to start being creative just to learn there are more steps involves than just opening the package. We came back inside of the house to mix water with the power substance inside of each jar. After I had my kitchen sink decorated with all colors of the rainbow, it was time for the kids to go outside to start using the new product. The kids...

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Top Summer Workbooks

Posted by on Jul 15, 2014 in Education, Family, Parenting, Summer | 4 comments

 Educational workbooks. You fell asleep even just reading the words, right? I used to cringe at the thought of academic workbooks too, especially in summer. Some research indicates that on average, children can lose 2.8 months of grade-level equivalency skills over summer vacation. That may not seem like much, but to those children who have worked especially hard during the school year, or had to “catch up” in some academic areas that number can be significant. Now, B-O-R-I-N-G might be the first word that comes to mind, but summer workbooks from my old days have greatly improved. Here’s a rundown of a few top-selling academic summer workbooks to help better prepare your kids for the upcoming school year: The Original Summer Bridge My favorite summer workbook is the Original Summer Bridge for pre-K through entering fifth graders. I like...

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Make Summer Really Count

Posted by on Jul 5, 2014 in Family, Parenting, Summer, Uncategorized | 0 comments

 For kids and parents, summer is the ideal time for fun in the sun, exploration and free play. However, one important thing we may not consider as parents is the opportunity to expose our children to philanthropy – whether through donating items to a particular organization, raising money for a good cause, or volunteering. According to experts, it is important to allow our kids a first-hand look at how a lack of the opportunities that they have been able to take for granted impacts people in less fortunate circumstances. This perspective fosters a generosity of spirit, a sense of gratitude, and a feeling of connectedness to their local community – and the world. There are many creative and inexpensive ways that young people can help others this summer. Summer is also a time when charities need extra help. But...

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Orange County Summer Movie Deals

Posted by on Jun 29, 2014 in Summer | 0 comments

  OK, it’s the end of June. You’ve been in summer for anywhere from a month to a week. By now you’re sick of Disney channel and have dropped $50 once or more on Malificent, Million Dollar Arm, Mr. Peabody, Rio 2, Muppets 6, How to Train Your Dragon 14, and everything else that has been released for kids in the movie theaters. What now? There’s only so much sunscreen you can apply each day before the aerosol fumes permanently coat your lungs in a nice SPF 55. So how to beat the heat and entertain in the shade on the cheap? Hit up a local summer movie deals or introduce your kids to the classics! Summer bargain movies are kid films that the theaters show on summer weekdays to give you and the kids something fun to do....

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Adventure Playground in Huntington Beach

Posted by on Jun 28, 2014 in Huntington Beach, Parks, Summer | 7 comments

 Remember the days when we could ride our bikes until the streetlights came on? Adventure Playground will be open to the public from June 19 – August 18, 2017. For most of my younger childhood, I grew-up living in the community of Beacon Bay in Newport Beach before we moved to Harbor View Homes (aka. The Port Streets). The best memories I have from growing up in Beacon Bay was building forts under the docks, and playing in the dirt until my hands were black. My mom and her friends would be inside playing bridge while all the neighborhood kids ruled the streets on our Huffy bikes. Things have changed, and my children are growing up in a society where they have to be more protected and sheltered. They can’t explore the world in the same way that I...

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Summer Fun Activity: Homemade Slime

Posted by on Jun 26, 2014 in Activities, Crafts, Family, Featured, Summer | 0 comments

  It’s the first week of summer around here and my girls’ very first request was to “make a craft!” I love to craft, so I guess the fruit doesn’t fall too far from the tree, although I likely wouldn’t have chosen what they settled on: SLIME!  Glittery slime at that! This is a sweetly surprisingly simple activity; one we settled on because we happened to have all two ingredients on hand!  Score! Well, truly it’s three ingredients, but who counts water!? Ya’ll should have that on hand. Ingredients: Glue Borax Water Method: Empty 1 bottle of glue into a large bowl.  We used a plastic bowl so little hands could be in charge and nothing would go crash.  We also used colored glitter glue, which yielded bright, glittery results!  This allowed us to skip coloring the slime. If you use a bottle...

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My Kids Are Out of School, Now What?

Posted by on Jun 25, 2014 in Family, Featured, Summer | 1 comment

 “I’m bored.” “There’s nothing to do.” “She hit me!” In considering the summer dilemma of summer boredom and borderline parental insanity, I stumbled upon a treasure of a book entitled The Family Manager’s Guide To Summer Survival by Kathy Peel. Though originally published in 2006, the book offers some doable and fun ways for everyone to survive the summer. Here’s a blend of my own and Peel’s no-nonsense tips: Hold a summer launch dinner or lunch to determine the summer bucket list During the meeting, talk about what ideas your kids have for summer fun. Keep in mind the social, physical and intellectual goals you’ve set to guide activities accordingly. Also, try to plan some activities with other parents so you have adult company rather than max out with all kids stuff. This is also a good time to...

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Transformers Toy Review

Posted by on Jun 23, 2014 in Entertainment, Family, Film, Summer, Toys | 0 comments

 Review product received  I grew up in the 80’s surrounded by boys. All my mom’s friends had boys so my world involved farts, boogers and poo talk. When they weren’t trying to gross me out or cause me pain, the boys would talk Atari, He-Man and Transformers (more than meets the eye in that “robotic” voice). Sure I would have loved to have discussed Jem or Poochi but that wasn’t in the cards for me. So my childhood consisted of me begging day and night to play with their Transformers in hopes of actually transforming a robot instead of sitting on the sidelines watching them. They boys would all tell me no because I was a girl and girls don’t know how to play with boys toys. Unbeknownst to them, when they were away playing basketball I played with...

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Win Tickets to the 2014 OC Fair

Posted by on Jun 21, 2014 in Featured, Giveaways, OC Fair, Summer | 150 comments

  It is almost time for our favorite summer event to start – the 2014 OC Fair! The Fair is coming to Orange County on July 11th through August 10th with fun for the entire family. There will be delicious fried foods, rides, games, animals, and more! Have a big family? No problem! The OC Fair has lot of special deals and discounts this year to help families stretch their dollar further while visiting the fair. With the fair opening just weeks away, we are thrilled to give one OC Mom Blog family a set of four tickets to use this summer. Enter to win the tickets in the form below, and good luck! We look forward to seeing everyone this year at the 2014 OC Fair!! a Rafflecopter...

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SOCO Summer Movie Nights

Posted by on Jun 20, 2014 in Events, Summer | 0 comments

 SOCO Nights is an outdoor Summer series that will take place every Tuesday from 5 – 9 pm at SOCO in Costa Mesa. Come celebrate SOCO in the Summer from June 3-Sept 9. See specific times and activities below, with once a month movies, & beer & wine garden. Enjoy pizza by the mobile wood burning pizzeria Urban Pie, and a live jazz band, in the relaxed and comfortable SOCO Courtyard. And on the first Tuesday of every month, we will also have an outdoor movie screening by Gear Co-op, and a beer and wine garden for guests, which will be available for purchase by the exclusive catering company, 24 Carrots. Grab your family and friends and enjoy all of SOCO’s Summer series, culinary and shopping destinations on SOCO Nights. On movie nights don’t forget to BYOC: bring your...

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Earth to Echo Geocaching Adventure

Posted by on Jun 20, 2014 in Family, Summer | 0 comments

 Courtesy of Relativity Media Geocaching is one of my kids favorite summertime activities. We fire up the GPS on my phone, and become treasure hunters in our own community. In anticipation of the kid-friendly film, “Earth to Echo,” families are invited to embark on a special Earth to Echo geocaching adventure. What is geocaching? Geocaching is a family-friendly activity that allows parents and kids to go outdoors to explore new locations around their city. Geocaching is a game of discovery, where adventure seekers can use an app or GPS on their mobile devices to search for cleverly hidden containers placed in nearby neighborhoods. Download the app to your phone, and take the kids on the adventure of a lifetime with the Earth to Echo geocaching adventure. Don’t forget to see the film in theaters on July 2nd, and share...

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“Meet The Presidents” Nixon Library Free Educational Summer Series

Posted by on Jun 19, 2014 in Events, Featured, Summer | 0 comments

 The Richard Nixon Foundation presents “Meet the Presidents,” a free series of educational events with five great American Presidents – plus First Lady Pat Nixon. Performed in the magnificent White House East Room, the presentations include interactive discussions, Q&A, coloring time, and photo opportunities. MEET PRESIDENT GEORGE WASHINGTON – TUESDAY, JULY 1 George Washington’s courageous role in the Revolutionary War led to the formation of the United States, where he served as its first President. MEET PRESIDENT THOMAS JEFFERSON – TUESDAY, JULY 8 Learn how the third President shaped the foundation of the United States, wrote the Declaration of Independence and doubled the size of our country through the Louisiana Purchase. MEET PRESIDENT ABRAHAM LINCOLN – TUESDAY, JULY 15 Hear about Honest Abe’s humble beginnings, how he went on to become the 16th President and lead the nation through...

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Tips for Picking the Best Barbecue

Posted by on Jun 12, 2014 in Family, Parenting, Shopping, Summer | 1 comment

  The time for cueing up the grill is upon us. Like many families, a majority of our summer meals center around outdoor cooking and entertaining. Unfortunately, our propane barbecue completed its “final cook off” last summer after a long seven-year relationship. Now that we’ve moved on, what are some of the main features to look for when buying a barbecue? According to my grilling husband extraordinaire, here are four main things to look for when purchasing a new barbecue: 1)   Heat, baby! Check the heat level of the grills, or in technical terms, its British Thermal Unit (BTU). As a general rule of thumb, for every square inch of grill you want 100 BTUs. Keep in mind, the type of heat source, size of barbecue and crafted materials can all impact the heat level. 2) Match the Grill to...

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Safe Summer Sunscreen Picks

Posted by on Jun 10, 2014 in Beauty, Family, Giveaways, Health, Parenting, Summer | 21 comments

 Tender, red flaming sunburned skin – and the unattractive and bothersome lizard peeling may be just some of the after effects of overexposure to the sun and underuse of sunscreen. In helping protect my family’s skin, I am completely overloaded with choices while strolling the sunscreen aisle at our local drugstore. Just like my food, I am becoming an avid label reader. I don’t understand at least half of the ingredients, or the possible harmful effects. However, as a starting point, what are some basic guidelines when it comes to selecting and applying sunscreen? Charity Ries, medical aesthetician, Coast Dermatology and Laser Surgery Center, Laguna Beach, recommends checking the label for two key ingredients. “Titanium Dioxide and Zinc Oxide (safe mineral sunscreens) will help protect your skin against the harsh and harmful UVA/UVB rays of the sun,” explains Ries. Ries also urges sun...

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Guide to Summer Concerts in Orange County

Posted by on Jun 5, 2014 in Entertainment, Events, Featured, Music, Parks, Summer | 0 comments

  One of the best summer activities to do with your family is to attend a free local summer concert in the park. Pack a picnic dinner, and head to your local park for one of these free summer concerts in Orange County. Spending summer nights at our local park is one of our favorite summer family activities. Don’t miss seeing my husband’s band, The Fenian’s, playing in Brea and Laguna Beach! See you there! Check back often as I will be adding more dates as the different cities post them! Brea City Hall Park 401 S Brea Blvd Brea, CA 92821 Lively music of various genres will be presented. This is the perfect place to enjoy free entertainment and get to meet some new friends. Guests are encouraged to bring their folding chairs or blankets and get comfortable...

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WEEBLES Coast to Coast at The Discovery Science Center

Posted by on Jun 4, 2014 in Events, Featured, Museums, Summer, Theme Parks | 0 comments

 We attended as a guest of DSC The Discovery Science Center (DSC) in Santa Ana invites families to pack their bags for an exciting journey across the United States. From May 24 through September 7, 2014, WEEBLES Coast to Coast will whisk guests away on a 50-state adventure across the country. Loaded with more than 70 hands-on activities, the exhibit explores the geography, history and uniqueness of the 50 United States. Children can pretend to white water raft the Colorado River, ride a burro down the Grand Canyon, take a snapshot next to the Statue of Liberty and much more. This 50-state adventure, designed for children ages 4-10, offers fun opportunities to learn about U.S. geography, history and music. Along with the WEEBLES adventure you can also enjoy all the other amazing exhibits that the DSC has to offer....

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Irvine Park Railroad Summer Giveaway

Posted by on Jun 2, 2014 in Featured, Giveaways, Summer | 31 comments

  One of our favorite summer activities is to visit the Irvine Park Railroad. Our family will go for a ride around the park on the train, ride bikes, play on the playground and have a picnic lunch. Every time that we visit Irvine Park Railroad, we create unforgettable memories that will last a lifetime. Out of all the activities at Irvine Park, our #1 family favorite is the paddle boats at Wheel Fun Rentals. Our family loves loading up on one of the giant water bicycles to paddle around the lake while interacting with the ducks. After our family is done having fun exploring the park, we go into the OC Zoo to visit the animals. Inside of the zoo is a petting zoo, and children can have an interactive experience by doing the complimentary scavenger hunt (parents...

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Five Tips for Planning an Ultimate Backyard Campout

Posted by on May 31, 2014 in Activities, Camp, Family, Featured, Summer | 0 comments

  One of our favorite summer activities is to have backyard campout with the kids. They are always so much easier than traditional camping, and the kids are always asking to do it again. Want to plan a backyard campout with your kids? Don’t know where to start? These are a few fun tips to help get you started with planning a campout in your backyard this summer. First you are going to need a tent. Don’t have a tent? Don’t worry! Before we purchased a tent, we would create our own backyard tent. Head over to the Home Depot or Costco, and load up the car with cardboard boxes. Spend the afternoon building your own backyard tent out of the cardboard boxes. Once it is done being created, cover all the cracks with towels and blankets for insulation....

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Family Guide to Orange County Beaches

Posted by on May 29, 2014 in Beaches, Corona del Mar, Dana Point, Featured, Huntington Beach, Laguna Beach, Newport Beach, Summer | 1 comment

  You wake up one summer morning and tell the kids, “let’s go to the beach!” As you gather the boogie boards, assemble sandwiches and search for sunblock …you begin to question, “wait, what beach should we go to?” Exactly which Orange County beaches are the right for my family? Which has ample parking, life guards on duty …or, do we just want to rent bikes and go easily into town for lunch and ice-cream? If you can’t decide which beach to pick, here is a guide to help you choose your ideal beach day that meets your expectations. Here are my picks for the coolest family- friendly beaches: For a full guides to the best beaches in Orange County, visit our beaches category, and guide to the OC tide pools. Seal Beach Seal Beach offers a quaint town...

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Guide to the Best Tide Pools in Orange County

Posted by on May 29, 2014 in Beaches, Best of OC, Corona del Mar, Dana Point, Featured, Laguna Beach, Newport Beach, Summer | 4 comments

  With so many beautiful, rocky shorelines in Orange County, tide pools are abundant. Our family loves spending summer days exploring these little ecosystems. The children are always fascinated by the spiny sea urchins, keyhole limpets, hermit crabs, small fish, mussels, sea stars, and colorful anemones. The diversity of life in these marine protected areas vary based on the amount of time they are covered by water. Just when you think you’ve seen everything, you take a step further and realize there’s a whole new world to explore. This creates hours of fun for all ages. Safety tips: Be sure you are aware of the tides at all times. Try to go as the tides are going out rather than coming in. Even at low tide, waves can come in quickly. Feel free to ask lifeguards and docents about...

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101 Things to do with Your Kids in Orange County this Summer

Posted by on May 28, 2014 in Events, Featured, Summer | 2 comments

  Summer..summer.summer..SUMMER! Our favorite time of the year has finally arrived, and it is the perfect time to create unforgettable memories with your children. There are so many events, activities and things to do with your kids in Orange County this summer! Make everyday magical doing some of these fun activities with your kids this summer. 1. Visit a local Orange County Park 2. Swim at a hidden beach in Orange County 3. Explore the Tidepools 4. Have lunch at the historic Ruby’s Shake Shack 5. Get close to nature at a local nature center 6. Take a nature hike 7. Skateboard at the Etnies Skate Park 8. Visit the Laguna Koi Ponds 9. See the rescued Sea Lions at the Pacific Marine Mammal Center 10. Learn and Explore at the Discovery Science Center 11. Visit the blow hole...

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2014 OC Parks Summer Concert Series

Posted by on May 28, 2014 in Events, Featured, Summer | 0 comments

 Sponsored Get your picnic blankets, folding chairs and bring the family to one of the OC Parks Summer Concerts. There will be ten free concerts at OC Parks across Orange County on Thursday evenings from June 26th through August 28th. All of the OC Parks Summer Concerts are part of The World Famous KROQ’s ROQ N’ Surf summer series. All shows are from 6 to 8 p.m., free concert admission with free parking and open to the public of all ages. Food trucks will be serving on-site at each location. Mark your calendars now for an unforgettable summer experience at one of these fun outdoor summer concerts. Craig Regional Park 3300 State College Blvd. Fullerton, CA 92835 Date: Thursday, June 26 Artist: No Duh with Verdell Date: Thursday, July 3 Artist: The Joshua Tree with Mia Koo Mason Regional...

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Summer Bucket List

Posted by on Jun 26, 2013 in Crafts, Family, Summer | 1 comment

  My kids are finally out for summer!! Hooray!! We kicked off summer by making our own summer bucket list. I gave the kids a sharpie, a bucket and let their imagination run wild with their summer aspirations. Every day, I am going to let the kids pick a popsicle stick out of our bucket for our daily activity. Making a summer bucket list is easy!! Supplies needed are just some popsicle sticks, markers and a container to hold your popsicle sticks. If your kids are having trouble thinking of some summer ideas, here are some of our suggestions: Fly a kite Blow bubbles Play marbles Make a giant mural out of chalk Have a family picnic Plant a garden together Have a great...

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