I never start a new year without a list of things I’d like to accomplish, and it mainly involves special experiences for our family.
If you’re working on your own list, let me share some 2014 happenings that I think you’d hate to miss…
We’re waiting. It’s coming. Or at least it has nearly every February for years. SNOW! Just 30 minutes East of downtown San Diego on Mount Laguna. I follow the FB page of Laguna Mountain Lodge, which does a great job of notifying us of weather conditions. Take a look at this article for what you need to know before heading to the mountain.
North County families can enjoy snow season (falling occasionally between Christmas through Easter) at Polomar Mountain. Follow Palomar Mountain Snow Play on Facebook for weather updates.
Butterfly Festival at the Water Conservation Garden
Saturday, April 5th (9am – 3pm)
The Garden at Cuyamaca College celebrates the grand opening of the Dorcas E. Utter Butterfly Pavilion with a celebration of all things butterfly! Interact with native butterfly species in the Butterfly Pavilion, learn about the butterfly life cycle, and find out how to create a home butterfly garden of your very own. A butterfly-habitat plant sale, butterfly-themed arts and crafts, and a kids’ Pollinator Parade are all a part of the fun! For full program details visit www.thegarden.org/butterfly.
If your kids love butterflies, be sure to add the annual Butterfly Jungle at San Diego Safari Park (each spring) and the grand opening of the new Monarch Program Butterfly Vivarium (2014) to your to-do list! And if you’ve never “grown” your own butterflies, be sure to get a butterfly kit from Insect Lore, a fantastic activity for any age.
Family Camp Outs
There’s no way we’ll get through 2014 without repeating our family camping experiences of 2013. The easiest and cheapest camping fun we enjoyed was with 6 other families in our neighbor’s backyard. It was a pot luck/s’more’s roasting/game night/backyard tent-sleeping extravaganza that I highly recommend.
Even better, was our weekend at Camp Marston in Julian where we enjoyed geo tracking, paint ball sling shots, archery, canoeing and b b gun shooting. This YMCA camp reminds me of the one I visited as a child each summer, and the family program is a great introduction to sleepover camp for young children. Read about our experience here.
We even went “glamping” in 2013. At least that’s what we called our experience in a luxury cabin at KOA Campgrounds in Chula Vista. We loved it so much, we rented two cabins to celebrate Mallory’s 8th birthday in November. All of the families who joined us were super impressed, so we’re looking forward to organizing a giant, multi-family KOA campout this spring.
We had never gone tide pooling before 2013 since I was a wee bit worried about handling two young children on slippery rocks all by myself. And I think I made the correct decision because even at 5 & 7 I needed to be very hands-on with my children while we explored the tide pools near San Diego’s Cabrillo National Monument. We followed my friend Kathy’s instructions, and could not have had a better time.
This year we’ll take part in a Birch Aquarium organized tide pool adventure, and I’ll be sure to fill you in on what we learn.
As you can see, we love the outdoors, and there’s so much for kids of all ages to enjoy here in San Diego. Where’s the New Year taking your family?