Posts Tagged ‘Giveaways’
11-11-11My daughter was due on 11-11. I spent that evening at Jack’s in La Jolla sitting on a comfy couch in the bar balancing things on my belly like an entire bottle of wine.
11-11 came and went, and no baby, but I still loved that day. My first due date. And this year it’s especially special. 11-11-11 seems worth celebrating, so I am with ELEVEN giveaways.
To win, simply comment on this post with the giveaway you want to win. I will award the prizes in order of comments received until they are all gone.
Hope 11-11-11 is a lucky day for you!
Prize 1: Got a son? Win the Boy Mom Designs shirt of your choice. I’m super excited to get my green army man shirt with matching toddler version for my boy in the mail this week. Visit www.boymomdesigns.com to choose YOUR favorite shirt!
Prize 2: Need a night out? Win this 4-pack of Ultrastar movie tickets and you can enjoy a moms’ night out, a double-date or a trip to the movies with the hubby and kids. I love that Ultrastar’s Parent Movie Mornings and Baby’s Night Out means you don’t have to miss the blockbusters just because you’re a new mom!
Prize 3: Java Mama is the original kid-friendly coffee shop in San Diego, and they are especially close to my heart since they opened right down the street from my house just when I was ready to venture out with my new baby. Win this prize and enjoy 2 passes for supervised play and a tasty beverage of your choice. With free WIFI, yummy food and awesome play spaces, Java Mama is a safe, clean, friendly place for you and your little ones to visit!
Prize 4: If you don’t live in the North County, you may not have experienced the pure joy of Nothing Bundt Cakes. But with a new store opening this December in Mission Valley, all of San Diego should be able to treat themselves to the rich, dense, wonderful awesomeness of a Nothing Bundt Cake. Choose this prize and you’ll get a single-serving “bundtlet” from the Mission Valley store each month for the next year! YUMMMMM
Prize 5: My girlfriends and I love, love, love happy hour at Serenity Spa in Sorrento Valley…$30 for a 25-minute treatment that comes with the cocktail of your choice and delicious 1/2 priced appetizers. Win a 50-minute Swedish massage and visit this delightful spa during happy hour or whenever you need a stress-buster!
Prize 6: At a craft show last weekend I bought the cutest bows and headband for my daughter from BowBees. Fun styles and great quality at terrific prices = NEW FAVORITE. With Christmas around the corner, you might like to win this fancy red, green and white headband holiday bow for infants and toddlers.
Prize 7: Why pay $17 (plus tip) for a kid’s hair cut when you can get one for free? Kids’ Hair Salon is open 7-days a week at Grossmont Center Mall, and they’ve done a great job with my daughter’s hair for nearly 6 years. This gift certificate entitles you to one free child’s hair cut.
Prize 8: If 2 is better than 1, you’ll really love winnng TWO kids’ haircuts compliments of Super Cuts in Scripps Ranch! Each certificate entitles you to one free junior haircut at the Super Cuts on Hibert Street (near Java Mama!)
Prize 9: Moms on the move need this awesome, custom-designed Creative Travel Mug! Carlsbad mom, Melissa Badour,designs these high quality, environmentally friendly, stainless steel hot/cold travel tumblers with customer’s personal photos. Win this prize and choose up to 16 of your favorite photos for use in your new mug! (includes an additional sport lid)
Prize 10: If you love Christmas, save the dates of December 16 – 18 and join me for A Christmas Tabernacle at Liberty Station in Point Loma. Win these two adult admission tickets and enjoy all of the events and entertainment the Christmas Tabernacle has to offer for free. From the live nativity show, to the snow play village, to performances of the Nutcracker by San Diego Ballet…it will be a wonderland for kids and adults alike. Psst…check out Plum District on November 16th when they will feature A Christmas Tabernacle tickets for 1/2 price!
Prize 11: When I think “lucky” I think LOTTERY. No, I don’t usually play, but I will today, and so can YOU. Win this prize, and I’ll buy you $11 worth of lottery tickets. Will you split the jackpot with me if you win???
You live in San Diego, you’re blessed with children…even if you don’t win one of these prizes, you’re a very lucky lady already! 🙂 Have a great day!!!
2012 Mom’s Guide to San Diego…let’s get together!
Well, it’s nearly a month later than I had planned, but the 2012 Mom’s Guide is finally printing, and soon there will be 10,000 copies to distribute to moms like you who are looking for great deals, handy-dandy kids-eat-free and events calendars that you can keep in your car or diaper bag, terrific resource listings on places you can (and should!) go with the kiddos and helpful articles written by some of our county’s coolest moms.
I want to thank the many advertisers whose participation in this year’s guide makes it possible to print and distribute across the county. If you’re wondering who they are, just look to the right of this post and, if you’re so inclined, please click the tile ads to visit their websites!
And I want to thank the companies that contributed to our special “Life’s Better When You BOGO” section. Get your guide, and you’ll be treated to more than $50 in BOGOs at:
Mon Petit Chateau
My Kids Clubhouse
Seaport Village’s Antique Carousel
The UTC mall Kiddie Train
If you are a military mom, please check with your Fleet & Family Support Center…they will have guides in offices across the county for you beginning next week!
If you are a playgroup organizer, please use the contact form to request copies of the guide for your members.
And if you’re a mom like me who loves to be out on the town with the kiddos, then let’s meet up this month! Remember, it’s Museum Month, and that means that from February 1 through February 29th we can get into 40 San Diego museums for 1/2 price. What a great time to check out some of the family programs we’ve been eager to attend. I will bring your copies of the 2012 Mom’s Guide with me to the following events, so mark your calendar, visit Macy’s for your Museum Month Passport, and let me know if you’re coming!
Thursday, February 16th: Mac’s Kids’ Corner at the San Diego Model Railroad Museum from 11 a.m. until 12:30 p.m.
Monday, February 20th: 10-11 a.m. it’s History for Half Pints “All Aboard A Train Adventure” at the San Diego History Museum.
Thursday, February 23rd: We’re going to check out the miniature train display and pot a plant at the San Diego Botanic Garden for their Thursday toddler playdate from 10-11 a.m. That afternoon from 4-6 p.m. we’ll be at Kid Ventures in Pacific Beach with Positively Kids playing “I Choose To Be Happy Bingo” and meeting Captain Positive! Click here for more info. and, be one of the first 25 moms to give us the secret code CAPTAIN POSITIVE because you do NOT want to miss out on the fab grab bags being handed out.
Friday, February 24th: From 2-4 p.m. we’re headed to the Lux Art Institute for the Family Friday tour, nature trail walk and an artist-led art project!
Saturday, February 25th: It’s Family Science Saturday at the Reuben H. Fleet Science Center. Join us from 1-3 p.m.
Sunday, February 26th: We’ll be hanging out with Ms. Frizzle @ the 2:15 p.m. Wacky Science Sunday show at the San Diego Natural History Museum.
Hope to see you in February!
A Cut-out of Your Cutie
I’m so glad that I will actually get to participate in this year’s special silhouette event featuring renowned scissor artist Karl Johnson. Now the likenesses of my little cuties will be turned into a work of art just like the children of Reese Withersoon, Tom Cruise, Jennifer Garner and Drew Barrymore.
Karl’s work is currently featured in Restoration Hardware Baby & Child, was on The O List in Oprah Magazine and has appeared in more than 30 other magazines. Each silhouette is cut out entirely freehand. Karl simply looks at the subject’s profile (whether in person or from a photograph) and starts cutting their exact likeness out of black paper.
Every silhouette is an original, one of a kind work of art, signed by the artist. Don’t miss your chance to meet Karl on Sunday, November 16th at Magical Child in Encinitas. Book your 5-minute appointment between 10 a.m. and 6 p.m. by clicking here. Each original silhouette costs $25, and duplicates can be purchased for $15.
If you’d like a chance to WIN a complimentary silhouette, email me at SanDiegoMom@hotmail.com. One winner will be selected this weekend and announced here and by email. Enjoy!
A Day at the Ballet
Did I mention that I used to want to be a professional ballet dancer?
I started dancing at age 3 and continued until about age 16, dancing several years with the New Orleans Ballet Company. I envisioned my daughter following in my pointe-shoe footsteps, but she prefers to enjoy ballet from the comfort of the audience.
No problem! We are both looking forward to the August 16th performance of Fairy Tales in the Park by San Diego Civic Youth Ballet (SDCYB). SDCYB has been the resident classical ballet school in Balboa Park since 1945, and this summer marks the 6th annual performance of the whimsical, interactive dance event that engages both young audiences and families, introducing them to the art of ballet through familiar stories they know and love.
Fairy Tales in the Park merges the beauty of ballet with the excitement of unforgettable stories. This one-day event features free outdoor activities in “Fairy Tale Village”; a magical journey through an “Enchanted Forest” theater lobby; and staged excerpts of beloved fairy tales. This year’s featured fairy tales include “Cinderella”, “Hansel and Gretel”, “The Emperor and The Nightingale”, and a sneak peek of the full-length spring ballet, “The Sleeping Beauty”.
Mallory and I will enter a magical land of enchantment where fairy tales come alive on the historic Casa del Prado stage. The performance will be professionally narrated and, afterward, we will visit “Fairy Tale Village” for FREE interactive activities like…
Cinderella’s Closet: Dress-up, dream, and find your own inner princess or superhero with the Fairytale Fashionista.
Coronation Station: Create your own royal crown with San Diego Public Library, as well as sign up for a library card.
Rapunzel’s Salon: Let down your hair and receive a special hair-do by the stylists from Pigtails & Crewcuts.
Sing-Along Square: Make music and create a take-home instrument with Nightingale Music School.
Village Depot: Take the reigns as conductor of moving model trains with San Diego Model Railroad Museum.
Knight’s Corner: Learn about chivalry and meet modern day knights from Chivalry Today.
Providing young people with the opportunity to study ballet, regardless of their means or background, is an integral part of San Diego Civic Youth Ballet’s mission. Fairy Tales in the Park helps raise support for the school’s scholarship program for the upcoming school year; last year’s Fairy Tales in the Park helped SDCYB provide over $25,000 in financial aid to families in need in 2013-2014.
If you’d like to join us for a magical day of fun and fairy tales on August 16 in Balboa Park simply comment below with the name and age of your child. One lucky mom’s guide reader will receive two tickets to the 3 p.m. performance.
Shows begin at 1pm, 3pm, and 5pm, and tickets are just $10 (General Admission). “Fairy Tales Village” is open from 12pm-5pm.
WHEN: Saturday, August 16, 2014 with shows at 1pm, 3pm, and 5pm.
WHERE: The Casa del Prado Theater in Balboa Park at 1800 Village Place, San Diego, CA, 92101.
ADDITIONAL INFORMATION: Tickets can be purchased at www.sdcyb.org. All tickets are $10, General Admission.
A Gift That Will Keep On Giving
I do love a company that gives back to its community. And I’ve seen first hand how teaching children to plant and grow gardens inspires healthy eating and a real appreciation of nature. (my kids have Greg’s green thumb, for sure!)
So I am happy to share with you this post about Stretch Island Fruit Company, the San Diego-based producers of FruitaBü natural fruit snacks, and the company solely responsible for “Fruit Tree 101,” a program that brings orchards to school yards.
Students were taught about the importance of fruit, healthy eating and the environment. They rolled up their sleeves, picked up their shovels and dug in, helping to plant the fruit trees that are up to seven feet tall!
The Fruit Tree 101 program is made possible by Stretch Island Fruit Co. with the help of the Fruit Tree Planting Foundation. This national, grassroots program addresses important issues like caring for the environment and proper nutrition by providing students with an outdoor classroom where they can foster fruit trees and shrubs – from planting to harvest.
To learn how your school can apply to participate in Fruit Tree 101, click here.
To learn more about Stretch Island Fruit Company, just reading their core values will tell you a lot…
We are optimistic: We believe in the goodness of people, real fruit and community. We envision a world of tasty fruit experiences that inspire people to celebrate nature’s goodness.
We are socially conscious: We believe the business of real fruit can help make positive changes in our world. That’s why we run our business and lead our lives in ways that we feel best benefit the health of people, communities and our planet.
We are simple: We believe in the power of nature to help nourish and sustain us, and that sometimes, less is truly more.
We are healthy: We believe in the vitality of whole foods. So we make only all-natural fruit foods that help people live their best lives. When we say our products count as USDA servings of fruit, we mean whole fruit, not fruit juice.
Boy Mom Love
Even though I too have a son, I have to admit that I get that “bless your heart” feeling when I meet moms with more than one boy or moms with just sons and no daughters. (Shout out to my friend DeSaix who just had twin boys!) I mean, it’s sometimes a little odd being a woman and having a boy, don’t you think?
They’re so LOUD, so rough and tumble.
They think it’s funny to burp and fart long before they understand that there’s such a thing as potty humor.
They (boys like my son, Gage) love dirt and grime. They lick the bottoms of their shoes and pick scabs for the fun of it. Really?! I really don’t relate.
But, I love my boy beyond words. I love all of his silly ways. I thank him for helping me understand so dramatically that the differences between men and women begin at the beginning (of life).
And, it’s true (in my case at least) what they say…little boys ADORE their moms. He seriously can’t get enough mommy time, which suits me just fine (most of the time).
When I saw Amy’s adorable Boy Mom line of shirts, I was psyched. They just spoke to t-shirt wearing me because, even though I’m a girly-girl, I’m also a very proud boy mom. And I knew Gage would get a kick out of seeing me in a brand that spoke to him too. He never wears his “green army man” shirt without asking me to wear mine. And he thinks my “football” hoodie is pretty cool.
These Ts are super-comfy, wonderful quality cotton, made in America by a fellow boy mom. It just can’t get much better than this if you ask me!
I want to give them as gifts to all of my friends pregnant with boys whose first thought might be “oh no!” There’s such joy ahead for the mom of a boy.
Ok, there are quite a few headaches too, but if you’ve got a son, you are in club “Boy Mom.” And Boy Mom Designs has created a uniform for those of us happy to be in the club!
See a Boy Mom Design that speaks to you? Tell me which one you like, and you’ll be entered to win =-)
Camping with the Critters
So it’s Spring Break across San Diego County, and there is no shortage of great camp options for the kiddos, that’s for sure. But if your littles love animals, check out this message from the Helen Woodward Animal Center, which is generously gifting a Spring Critter Camp spot to one lucky reader!
Spring Critter Camp 2012
April 2nd -13th
For Grades PreK-5th
Come meet horses, bunnies, birds, snakes, lizards, and much more at Spring Critter Camp!
As they have fun, campers learn respect, compassion and how to provide a lifetime of care for animals. Our camp provides an enthusiastic staff of instructors, hands-on animal encounters, and fun, animal related crafts, games, and activities that are age and developmentally appropriate. Sign up for a day, or two, or the whole week! Check out our website for daily themes and to sign up today! www.animalcenter.org/education
If you’d like to enter to win a spot at this spring’s Critter Camp, simply leave a comment here with your preferred week and age of your child. If you’ve ever been to the Helen Woodward Animal Center, tell us what you thought!
The Helen Woodward Animal Center has offered Critter Camp for 40 years! The money raised goes right back to help the animals found in this unique, private, non-profit organization dedicated to saving the lives of animals and enriching the lives of people. For more than 30 years, our no-kill Center has provided humane care and animal adoption for orphaned animals, as well as animal-centered educational and therapeutic programs for people. The Center is a dynamic, evolving institution that is an agent of change for the animal welfare world. Not only are we operating innovative and beneficial programs for animals and people, but we are teaching others around the world how to successfully market and promote their animal adoption and humane programs and stop the senseless death of thousands of animals.
Our little family has quite a few holiday traditions. Today we’ll be going to see How The Grinch Stole Christmas at The Old Globe. Greg and I have enjoyed The Grinch together for nine years now, but it’s even better with kids.
Although it’s kid-friendly, Greg and I prefer to be kid-free when we go to Anthology for the house band’s performance of Christmas tunes.
Throw in a few holiday parties, and it seems like there wouldn’t be time for anything else. But this year we are adding a new tradition…something I’ve wanted to do for years now. And, thanks to today’s Christian Youth Theater’s Black Friday special, just could not pass up.
Our family loves live musical performances, especially when children are part of the cast. We have several friends whose kids participate in CYT’s after school acting programs, and my friends swear that this is the best family holiday event in town.
Christian Youth Theater is offering 1/2 priced tickets today through Sunday on online orders for evening performances. I just purchased seven seats very close to the stage for $130!
They are also generously donating one pair of tickets to a lucky Mom’s Guide reader, good for the show of her choice. To enter for your chance to win, simply leave a comment below and include your family’s favorite holiday tradition. 🙂
Day Camp 101Kindergarten and Pre-K moms, I want to tell you about the sweetest way to introduce your child to day camp. The Chula Vista Nature Center offers fun, educational and low cost camps that are also fairly short, making them a great way to introduce your little one to a camp experience.
Last spring both of my children attended the nature center’s 2-day “Rock Stars” day camp where they learned about tide pools, got to feed, touch and photograph the animals they were interacting with, did sea-star related crafts and had a snack with their new camp friends all in a quick three hour morning. It was a great way to have them express their independence while getting some cool, hands on fun with sea creatures. Gage has started to ask about going again, just in time for next week’s spring break camps!
One of the best parts of the Chula Vista Nature Center day camps is their prices, which start at $38 for members and $42 for non-members. But even better is WINNING a FREE two or three day pre-K or kindergarten camp of your choice.
If you are looking for an educational and fun camp during the weeks of March 26th or April 2nd, check out the options at the nature center by clicking here. To enter to win, simply leave a comment below with the name and date of the preschool or kinder camp you are interested in having your child attend. One winner will be randomly selected on Thursday, March 22nd.
Good luck and happy spring break moms!
Last night’s opening of Toy Story 3 on Ice was a fantastic choice for a family outing…just ask my husband who pointed out that Disney never disappoints.
Tickets start at $18.50, making it one of San Diego’s more affordable special attractions. And, there are lots of special offers floating around out there to help bring that cost down (hint…get your playgroup together and buy group sale price tickets!)
Fans of the Toy Story movies will love seeing the characters come to life on ice. Our kids were thrilled when the green army men arrived, one by parachute, and proceeded to “march” on ice. My favorite part was when Ken and Barbie couple skated to “Dream Weaver.” I just LOVED it.
We’ve been to each Disney on Ice performance over the past three years, and each and everyone has been excellent. But Toy Story was the one that appealed most to our whole family. Even Mallory, who is a princess-lovin’ girl, claimed that Toy Story 3 on Ice was the best show yet.
Fabulous Fancy Fun
A few years ago I was lucky enough to help bring Robin Preiss Glasser, the illustrator of the Fancy Nancy series, to town for a mommy & me tea party. Everyone who attended agreed that she was fabulous as she read from The Mermaid Ballet and told us all about being a ballerina-turned-children’s-book-illustrator.
And a magical thing happened…
Robin recreated the beautiful ballroom in which we had tea for the next Fancy Nancy book, Fanciest Doll in the Universe. I bet every little girl who came to the event searched for herself in those pictures. I know I did!
Would the young readers in your life enjoy meeting the illustrator and also the author of the popular Fancy Nancy series? Would they like to sip tea and nibble on dainty sandwiches and desserts? Would they like to be a part of a super special surprise party in honor of Nancy Clancy’s 10th birthday? If yes, join us at Tee Party on February 28th for the Surprise Fancy Nancy 10th Birthday Party Adventure.
I’m treating one lucky mom and her young reader to this splendiferous event. For your chance to win, please comment here with the name of your favorite Fancy Nancy book.
Saturday, February 28 at 2:30pm
$39 per child (includes autographed book)
$49 per adult (includes glass of champagne)
If you have a young daughter, you are probably familiar with the Fancy Nancy book series. If you’re like me, you think that author, Jane O’Connor, is something of a genius (that’s fancy for really, really smart). What an incredible way to teach young children new vocabulary words!
Last December I took Mallory to the annual Fancy Nancy Tea Party at the Junior League of Orange County’s Christmas Company. It was delightful! Both Jane O’ Connor and Robin Preiss Glasser, the artist behind the beautifully illustrated books, were there reading from Fancy Nancy: Splendiferous Christmas. They gave us fancy tips, talked about how Jane only had sons so her inspiration for the popular book series came simply from her own imagination. We sipped tea, ate delicious treats, and every child received an autographed copy of the book.
During the meet and greet portion of the afternoon I asked if they would consider coming down South. Why shouldn’t San Diego’s little girls have their own posh event?
Voila! Robin Preiss Glasser instantly said yes, handed me her card and, less four months later, we are nearly sold out of tickets to the first annual Fancy Nancy Tea Adventure! I can’t tell you how thrilled I am about our tea party at the Westgate Hotel. (Talk about fancy!)
Each little guest will receive her very own autographed copy of the newest Fancy Nancy book, The Mermaid Ballet. Our guest of honor, Robin Preiss Glasser, will read to us and give us some fancy pointers. The Westgate has prepared an extra special menu to satisfy moms and daughters alike. We’ll have goody bags for each family to take home. And best of all, we’ll all be fancy and silly for an unforgettable afternoon.
As I said, this tea party is nearly sold out (I can’t believe it!), so visit www.AdventuresByTheBook.com to sign up soon if you’re interested. I want to thank Neisha’s Dance Academy and Mon Petit Chateau , two fantastic Eastlake businesses that cater to moms and children for generously sponsoring this event, and my event partners, Adventures by the Book and The Junior League of San Diego, for helping bring the party to San Diego.
What: The Fancy Nancy Tea Party Adventure includes an elegant afternoon tea, signed book for each child, book discussion, Q&A, author signing, and an opportunity to meet the author up close and personal in an intimate setting. Tickets are $39 per adult and $49 per child.
When: Sunday, April 29 the beginning at 12:30pm
Where: The Westgate Hotel, 1055 Second Avenue, downtown San Diego
Don’t forget your fancy clothes and accessories! And please share this post with other magnificent moms and daughters who might enjoy this tea 🙂
We’ve been Seaworld annual pass holders for years and love it. But San Diego does have two great alternatives to the big shows and big crowds of Seaworld, and they are both offering special reasons to visit this month.
On January 21 from 11am until 4pm, ocean enthusiasts will learn about marine protected areas or “underwater parks” during the Aquarium’s fourth annual Underwater Parks Day. This event is an effort by Southern California aquariums to explain the need for marine protected areas that replenish fish populations and restore the health of coastal waters.
SEA LIFE will host kid-friendly activities including prize giveaways, a special underwater dive show, an educational craft event, a conservation expo with hands-on exhibits and more. Tickets for kids (3–12) are $15 and $20 for adults.
To mark 20 years at its current location along Expedition Way in La Jolla, Birch Aquarium at Scripps is offering San Diego County residents half-off admission on the 20th of every month through this September.
The special deal is valid for residents living in zip codes 91901-92199 who will be asked to show a valid ID to receive the offer (limit two children per paid adult; cannot be combined with other offers).
Aquarium visitors can explore more than 60 marine tanks teeming with fish, corals and invertebrates from the chilly waters of the Pacific Northwest to the warm currents of the tropical seas. A showcase 70,000-gallon tank houses a forest of gently swaying kelp, treating visitors to a serene view of a complex marine community that flourishes off the San Diego coast.
In addition to marine-life exhibits, the aquarium showcases ocean and earth science in its interactive, award-winning museum. Boundless Energy, the aquarium’s newest exhibit, opened last summer. This outdoor, interactive playground – celebrating ways we can harness clean energy from the planet – is a natural extension of Feeling the Heat: The Climate Challenge, an adjacent exhibit that presents the science of global climate change.
You can’t go wrong with a trip to SEA LIFE or Birch Aquarium, and even better is a FREE outing to each. Leave your comment with which aquarium you’d most like to visit for your chance to win a family 4-pack of tickets!
Free Car Seat Safety Checks
If you’re not sure about how to install your baby’s car seat, help is available.
Babies R Us and the CHP are teaming up to provide FREE car seat safety checks this weekend. A complimentary car seat safety check event will be held this Sunday, November 2nd from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m. at the Babies R Us in Chula Vista.
No pre-registration is required. Just arrive at the Babies R Us located at 1860 Main Ct in Chula Vista between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. and let the experts properly install your baby’s car seat.
If you are unable to attend the November 2nd event, here is a list of other San Diego organizations that provide free safety checks:
Kohl’s/Rady’s Children’s Hospital Car Seat Inspection at Kohl’s East Lake, Chula Vista. Click link to schedule your appointment.
Central San Diego
Kohl’s/Rady’s Children’s Hospital Car Seat Inspection at Rady’s Children’s Plaza in Serra Mesa and at the Balboa Kohl’s. Click the link to schedule your appointment.
California Highway Patrol-San Diego , 4902 Pacific Highway twice a month on Saturdays. First come first served, call 619-220-5492 for more information.
La Mesa Police Department at 8085 University Ave. Free inspection on the 1st Tuesday of each month at 9am. First come first served, no appointments needed. Call 619-667-1400 for more information.
California Highway Patrol, 1722 East Main Street in El Cajon. Tuesday mornings, call 619-401-2000 for appointment.
Kohl’s/Rady’s Children’s Hospital Car Seat Inspection; Kohl’s of Rancho San Diego. Click the link to schedule your appointment.
California Highway Patrol, 1888 Oceanside Blvd. in Oceanside. Once a month, first come first served from 9 – 11 a.m. and 1 – 3 p.m.. Call 760-757-1675 for available dates.
Kohl’s/Rady’s Children’s Hospital Car Seat Inspection for Encinitas and San Marcos. Click the link to schedule your appointment.
California Law (Effective 01/01/2012):
Children under the age of 8 must be secured in a car seat or booster seat in the back seat.
Children under the age of 8 who are 4′ 9″ or taller may be secured by a safety belt in the back seat.
Children who are 8 years and over shall be properly secured in an appropriate child passenger restraint system or safety belt.
Passengers who are 16 years of age and over are subject to California’s Mandatory Seat Belt law.
For accurate, up-to-date car seat safety information, visit http://www.thecarseatlady.com/.
Harnessing Their Energy
The kids and I got charged up about the future of energy at last week. Boundless Energy at the Scripps Birch Aquarium is an interactive exhibit that celebrates ways we can use natural forces to power our world. It also lets children harness their own energy to power the reusable energy stations on display.
Of course, in addition to Boundless Energy, the aquarium is a wonderful place to visit with sea creatures of all sorts including sharks, starfish, seahorses, sea urchins and more. There really is something to capture the attention of any age child. We all really enjoyed the different varieties of sea dragons we met…
September 20th is the last day to celebrate the Birch Aquarium’s 20th anniversary with 1/2 priced admission, and next month kids go free to the aquarium all month long with a paying adult. But I’m excited to be able to give one lucky playgroup 12 free tickets to visit anytime.
If you have kids whose energy needs to be harnessed, take a trip to this San Diego treasure. To enter to win, simply reply below with the name of your playgroup and age range of the kiddos. One entry will be randomly selected this weekend!
It’s a Gym! It’s a Playground! It’s a Spa! It’s a…
However, step inside San Diego’s most unique mommy & me play space, and you’ll quickly discover that Jungle Gym & Cafe offers as many goodies for you as it does for your kiddos.
During the hour-long instruction, I had the chance to answer emails using the Jungle Gym’s complimentary WiFi while savoring a wonderful lemon sorbet served in the biggest lemon I’d ever seen.
This afternoon the kids will enjoy a 25-minute yoga class while I kick back and catch up on my reading.
Then they will play with their classmates under the supervision of the Jungle Gym staff while my friend and I take an hour-long yoga class of our own. Adult fitness classes are offered before the Jungle Gym & Cafe’s indoor play space is open and after it closes, so the only children inside belong to the moms taking the classes.
Next week I will take advantage of their free childcare again when I get a pumpkin peel in the newly opened med-spa facilities. There’s also acupuncture and they’ll soon offer massage.
I know it sounds like I go to The Jungle Gym & Cafe to get a break from my kids and to take advantage of some mommy pampering and stress relief. That is true!
But I also have a lot of fun with my babies while we’re there playing badminton and air hockey together.
Join me at The Jungle Gym & Cafe (and spa!) this month. Any two classes are free, and I’ll cover your childcare for up to two kids. Just check out the fitness schedule and tell me which classes you’d most like to take. 5 winners will be selected this week!
Kids (and you!) Eat Free in San Diego
If you’re like me, cooking is one of the last things you feel like doing in the days following Christmas. Sure, you’ve got leftovers, but a great gift for any mom is a delicious meal prepared by someone else.
My children are still young enough that, if we’re going out, there must be pasta, chicken, pizza or some other kid-friendly item on the menu, which is why O’s American Kitchen will fit the bill for our dinner tonight.
Seriously picky kids might begin and end with the warm, soft, buttery breadsticks, but there really is something for every family member on O’s menu. Our favorite is the twice baked chicken & bacon carbonara. There are healthier options like roasted lemon chicken and sweet spinach and bacon salad. And more kid-friendly options like cheese pizza and chicken tenders.
I have O’s on my mind today as I update the Kids Eat Free calendar…there are 16 restaurants that offer free kids’ meals on Tuesdays in addition to O’s!
Are you looking for a night free from cooking? O’s American Kitchen would like to give you the night off and a $30 gift card as a post holiday pick-me-up. To enter to win, please do one of the following —
1. Post a comment with your favorite O’s location or menu item.
2. Suggest an update or addition to the Mom’s Guide to San Diego’s kids eat free calendar.
3. Share the kids eat free calendar with your friends on Facebook or Twitter
One winner will be selected before the end of 2012 🙂
My house smells lemony fresh thanks to the Lime Maids who were here today for 2 1/2 hours cleaning from top to bottom. These ladies have been cleaning for me for years, and when they leave I am always soooo happy. The hubby is too!
I feel completely incapable of replicating that sparkling clean result that they always leave behind, and I know my attempt at a whole house cleaning would last much longer than 2 1/2 hours. It’s a wonderful gift each month to have them here in my home.
So since the Lime Maids are definitely one of my favorite things, and since some of you specifically said that the gift of house cleaning would make your Mother’s Day just that much more special, I’m happy to let you know that one reader will receive a free house cleaning, compliments of the Lime Maids.
Entering is easy…just tell us here how long you’ve been celebrating Mother’s Day, and you’ll automatically be entered to win a free cleaning! Winner will be selected next week.
Good luck & happy Mother’s Day to you!
Let the Savings Begin!
They say you can divide moms into two groups…Target shoppers and Walmart shoppers.
I was on my way to Target the other day to pick up some frozen waffles and cake mix when I remembered that La Mesa’s new Walmart Neighborhood Market is now open. I know a lot about the neighborhood market concept since I shop at one every summer during our 2-week vacation in Orange Beach, Alabama. The selection is always great, the prices are even better, and since my trip to Target was basically for grocery items, I decided to give La Mesa’s newest market a try.
Wow, 33-cent Haas avocados! $1 for a 7lb bag of ice! The same or better prices on all of the things I normally pick up from Target, but oh so much more to choose from. In fact, Walmart Neighborhood Market is essentially like the Ralph’s grocery store that is just next door, but with those famous Walmart prices on food and pharmacy items.
The neighborhood market looks nothing like a regular Walmart, by the way. Its cheerier colors are bright green and yellow.
And, so far, the staff seems exceptionally well trained to be helpful and friendly. My cashier told me that the neighborhood market will match prices and strives to automatically offer the lowest price in town.
Want to try out the Walmart Neighborhood Market for yourself? To enter for a chance to win a $25 neighborhood market gift card simply comment on this post and tell me whether you’re usually a Walmart or a Target mom 🙂
Let’s Get Physical, Physical…
San Diego’s newest indoor play space for kids comes with a cool twist for parents. Yes, there’s a cafe. Yes, there’s free WiFi. Yes, they offer birthday parties, memberships and drop in pricing. In many ways the Jungle Gym & Cafe is like the other indoor spots your kids love. But for the first time in San Diego we have an indoor play center that offers fitness classes for the whole family and spa services for those of us craving a little extra TLC.
I am so excited for my friends, the Larsons, who are set to open the Jungle Gym & Cafe in Santee this coming weekend. Tonya Larson’s enthusiasm for fitness has led to what I think is a brilliant idea…moms get to work out while the kids are playing. I’m looking forward to cardio dance and athletic yoga. Maybe I’ll add a few pure pump and zumba classes too. If I can get even half as fit as Tonya already is, I’ll be psyched. (so will my husband!)
I also cannot wait for the massage and acupuncture services that will be online in the coming months. Childcare is available during fitness and spa sessions for kids ages 4 months to 12 years. Babies and toddlers have their own special play space, while older kids can jump, run, climb and play on Jungle Gym’s bouncer slides, jumper and obstacle course, safari cycle rides, jungle themed playground with airplane, hammock and rope swings and a campsite and costumes for imaginative play. There’s also badminton, soccer, basketball, foosball and air hockey. WOW!
The “safari cycles” are just one of the many unique goodies you will find at Jungle Gym & Cafe. Kids use their whole bodies to power the animals around the room. Too cool!!
If you want to be among the first to visit this amazing 8,000 square foot indoor wonderland, mark your calendar for the grand opening, this Saturday, August 11th. Take advantage of the 25% sale off fitness and play space memberships through August 18th.
Want to win it?
Leave a comment below for your chance to win a 3-month combination fitness and play membership valued at more than $150. This membership is good for two adults and up to two children and the benefits include:
Unlimited Adult Exercise Classes
Free Childcare for children 4 months to 12 years of age during classes up to 2 hours daily.
Free OPEN PLAY Membership included
Members have no time limit in the Jungle Gym & Cafe.
Unlimited Open Play Visits
All Children’s Classes are FREE!
1 FREE Open Play Guest Pass for a friend
2 FREE Guest passes for 1 Exercise Class (Childcare fee not included)
10% off of any BIRTHDAY PARTY PACKAGE
Let’s Pick a Winner
Want to win some cool prizes in advance of the Fleet Science Center’s Gross Olympics?
Just share this post on your Facebook wall or in an email to friends with kiddos for your chance to WIN this prize pack worth $150!
**Trade in those smelly sneakers (after the smelliest sneaker contest on July 7th, of course) for a fresh new pair using your $50 DSW Shoes gift card!
**Clean up your “gross” kid with a free haircut, compliments of Kids Hair Salon
**Show your pride with the Boy Mom Designs boutique t-shirt of your choice
**And join us at the Gross Olympics with a family 4-pack of tickets to the Reuben H. Fleet Science Center!
Be sure to tag The Mom’s Guide to San Diego or comment below so I know you’ve entered the contest by sharing The Gross Olympics with your friends and family.
For those brave enough to post a photo to your FB wall of your kid doing something gross or silly, you’ll be awarded 3 chances to win instead of just 1! Be sure to tag The Mom’s Guide to San Diego so I know to give you the extra points. Something like “We want to win the Gross Olympics Prize Pack from @The Mom’s Guide to San Diego” will work. Good luck! 🙂
Little League Love Affair
With closing ceremonies this weekend, our third Little League season has officially ended. I say “our” because Little League really is a family affair.
From the dads (and a few moms) who volunteer to coach, to the other family members who work the snack bar, keep score, plan the celebrations and happily sit together during weekly practices and games cheering their children, siblings, teammates – even opposing team players – for their progress.
We became a baseball family when Gage joined Rolando Little League T-ball at age 4. So, of course we see every baseball movie, including Million Dollar Arm. This PG rated movie, in theaters now, is funny, inspiring and uplifting. My kids liked it better than Frozen. (comment below for a chance to win tickets and see if your kids agree!)
We also make it out to cheer the San Diego Padres each chance we get. Little Leaguers have a special day at the stadium, but any kid under age 14 can become a “Junior Padre.” Registration is free, and every Sunday Junior Padres enjoy events like batting clinics, running the bases, playing catch on the field and special autograph signings.
The Padres’ commitment to kids doesn’t stop there. The team helps refurbish baseball diamonds across the county and, since 2012 they have generously donated more than 14,000 jerseys and caps to local Little League teams, including ours. Families so appreciate the cost savings and love to see which of the twelve different styles their team will get.
The Padres even support The Mom’s Guide, offering a generous 50% discount on select games, especially the ones featuring Junior Padres activities. Woo hoo!!
While this year’s Little League season has come to an end, here are a few ways your baseball-loving children can still enjoy the game…
- Purchase Padres tickets to select games at up to 50% off using the code SDMOM14
- Watch “Angels in the Outfield” for free on June 7th at the Summer Movies in the Park
- Enter to win a family 4-pack of tickets to see “Million Dollar Arm” at UltraStar by commenting below
- Sign up for Little League “fall ball” or the 2015 season by joining your community team.
In 2014 the boundary rules for Little League were changed allowing families to choose a league that serves either their home or school community. For more information click here. If multiple teams come up in your search, and you are not sure which league is the appropriate one, click on the link for the District Administrator in your area, and he/she can help you identify the correct league that serves your area.
Love to Play?
Did you see this awesome deal from PlumDistrict.com for a $65 semi-private party at Play Town? Play Town is a great place for kids 6 and younger, and my 6 and 4-year-olds have loved going there since they started walking.
I am fond of East County’s first indoor play space for so many reasons. Before we had Play Town, we used to drive out to Poway for this kind of indoor fun!
I like that there is space for non-walkers as well as bigger kids, free WiFi and that families are allowed to bring in their own food and drinks. They have a wonderful calendar of events chock full of character visits, face painting, specialty classes and boutique shopping days. Play Town’s owner, Jillian, is a fun, sweet fellow mom who purchased Play Town from its original owners after hosting her son’s 2nd birthday party there. “I took over Play Town when I got separated and needed to provide for myself and my son. I thought owning an indoor playground would still allow me to enjoy all the great things that come along with being a mom.”
AND Jillian has generously provided mom’s guide readers with a buy-one-get-one free coupon in the 2012 printed resource guide. In honor of Friday the 13th, the first 13 moms who comment on this post will be mailed their own copy of The Mom’s Guide to San Diego with its Play Town BOGO coupon.
Have a great day!
Mai Tais at Sunset
So I have one final favorite that I want to share with you this Mother’s Day. Here’s a hint…it includes mai tais at sunset.
If you live near Pacific Beach, you are probably familiar with the annual summer luau party that the Catamaran Resort hosts. You don’t have to be in Hawaii to feel like you’re on vacation. The Catamaran luaus are pretty authentic and are definitely a great way to spend a San Diego evening.
From the moment you step foot onto the grassy lawn that overlooks Mission Bay, you’ll be serenaded with tropical music, greeted with colorful leis and handed your soothing cocktail. After the ceremonial entrance of the pig, a fabulous buffet of fresh salads and fruits, Kalua pig, pork loin, miso glazed salmon, guava chicken and assorted rice and vegetable dishes awaits you.
While you feast, you’ll enjoy the sounds of the South Pacific and authentic dances and stories of the islands. As the sun goes down, the fire dancing begins, delighting all ages.
The Catamaran Resort Summer Luaus start in late June and run through August. There are generous discounts for military, and their children are invited to attend free. But readers of The Mom’s Guide to San Diego have the chance to win a pair of tickets to the Tuesday evening luau of their choice. (an $116 value!)
To enter to win, simply reply here with how you are planning to spend Mother’s Day. This prize will be awarded to one reader this Sunday!
Enjoy this special guest blog post and giveaway from Amber Rukaj, LMFT, Mommy, and President of the Postpartum Health Alliance.
With Mother’s Day just weeks away, come and enjoy Mamafest this Friday at the La Costa Resort and Spa! Keep reading for a chance to win a package of four tickets for a Mom’s Night Out!
Mamafest, the annual fundraising event for The Postpartum Health Alliance, gives San Diego moms (and expecting moms) a chance to get out of the house and make local connections to support them through all stages of pregnancy and motherhood. The event not only draws hundreds of local moms for a fun night out at a beautiful venue, it also raises awareness about The Postpartum Health Alliance (PHA) and the all-volunteer network they have to support San Diego moms suffering from postpartum depression and related disorders.
“Six weeks after my twins were born, I found myself dreading each new day, constantly anxious and hopeless about the future,” confides Jessica Heldman, now Program Director of PHA. “When I reached out for help, I discovered that I was not alone and that the way I felt was not my fault. I also learned that I could get better,” she continued.
Mamafest aims to not only raise funds for PHA’s annual non-profit operating budget, but also to provide local moms with an opportunity to connect with mom-friendly vendors and services. The event will feature a vendor marketplace, swag bags, light food, a cash bar, educational and engaging speakers, and a silent auction full of great items for mom and baby. This year’s event will take place Friday, April 27, 2012 from 7pm-10pm at the La Costa Resort.
Mamafest is presented by Stroller Strides and is the official San Diego event for Pregnancy Awareness Month (PAM). Tickets are on sale for $20 in advance. Learn more online and buy tickets at www.brownpapertickets.com. In addition, the first person to comment here and leave their email address will win a package of four tickets to the event!
Hope to see you there!
Meet The Martha Stewart of Men!
It’s not very often that my husband shows interest in my mom’s guide goings-on, but when we were invited to this weekend’s free IKEA store seminar on “refreshing and updating” kitchens with celebrity designer & dad, Stephen Saint-Onge, he volunteered to attend!
This seminar could not be better timed for us since we are planning to update our kitchen this year. If you could use a few design tips, and if you like gift giveaways, why not join us at IKEA in Mission Valley this Sunday at 1 p.m.?
Stephen Saint-Onge is Contributing Home Editor for Family Circle. His work has been seen in This Old House, House Beautiful, Elle Decor, Romantic Homes, Renovation Style, In Style and Ladies Home Journal. Stephen has also been a featured guest on Today, The Early Show, CNN, Fox News, Better TV and The View.
If you love IKEA, free gift giveaways and would like to attend this FREE event, join us!
IKEA Life Improvement Seminar
Sunday, March 10th
IKEA Mission Valley, 2149 Fenton Parkway
No reservations required, event is free and open to the public, gift giveaways are limited, this is a sponsored blog post and you get a chance to win a $25 Visa gift card just for reading it and posting your comment below! One winner will be randomly selected on Saturday, March 9th. Good luck! 🙂
Mommy & Me Afternoon Tea
The Westgate is a grand hotel located in downtown San Diego near the Civic Center. I had the pleasure of spending the afternoon there recently when my daughter and I attended the Fancy Nancy Tea Party. I had always heard wonderful things about the hotel’s traditional tea service, which made selecting The Westgate as the location for our Fancy Nancy Tea Adventure, a no-brainer.
If you are looking for something extra-special to do with your little one or are searching for a different mom’s day out opportunity, you’re in luck. The Westgate offers its traditional tea service every Friday, Saturday and Sunday from 2:30 until 5:00 p.m. Playing in the background is gentle harp music, and on the menu is a selection of fine teas, savory breads and sandwiches, sweet berries and scones and a selection of delightful desserts.
The Westgate has generously donated an afternoon tea for two with tax and gratuity included, which one lucky reader will win. If I could win this prize, I’d research the upcoming performances at the San Diego Civic and Balboa Theaters and coordinate my special tea around a theatrical production to make it a full day of fun. (Peter Pan, featuring Cathie Rigby, is coming in November and we always enjoy The Nutcracker in the winter!)
To be entered to win this tea-for-two prize, reply here with who you’d bring, what occasion you would celebrate or what fun downtown happening you’d squeeze in before or after tea. One winner will be selected this week!
Last summer I faced the classic dilemma – what can I do with my 3 year daughter for 12 whole weeks until preschool begins again? Most summer camps are for designed for children kindergarten age and older, but I wanted my daughter to have a wonderful summer experience, meet new people and be exposed to activities we did not do during the school year, or at home.
After much searching, I found the perfect solution: Kidz Kamp at Recreational Music Center located in Point Loma at Liberty Station. Specifically for preschool-aged children, each camp session is for one week for two hours per day. This is the perfect amount of time for busy youngsters—not too long for a child to get bored or tired, but enough time for Mom to get a few errands done. The fact that there are plenty of wonderful shops at Liberty Station was an extra bonus.
My daughter and another friend from her preschool went to camp when the weekly theme was “Bugz”. Although the camp is mainly music-based, there were plenty of other activities to keep them interested. They learned about ants, caterpillars, spiders and other insects while playing outside. During the arts-and-crafts section of the day, they made masks of butterflies and bumblebees and other bugs. Additionally, each day they learned a song and played a variety of instruments like drums, tambourines and maracas. At the end of the week, parents were invited to a short show put on by the children, who were wearing their masks, and dancing and singing.
The cost of the camp, at $199, was quite reasonable—especially since an early registration gets a discount of 25%.
To say the kids enjoyed camp that year is an understatement. Since there are various themes each week, each session a completely new experience. At the end of the summer, my daughter and her friend went back to camp for another week. This time the theme was “Growing in the Garden”. These weekly day camps gave us both a positive experience as they kept her entertained in a wonderful way and provided me enough alone time to accomplish all the things a busy mommy has to do.
Registration for early childhood camps beginning June 18-22nd is now available. Cost is $199 per week.
Recreational Music Center is currently offering a $50 discount for those families who register for Kidz Kamp, and $100 for those who register for Glee or Rock Star camp by May 30th. Simply mention “Early Bird Special” when you register by phone or online at http://www.recreationalmusiccenter.com/ptisite/control/early_childhood_camp. AND, Recreational Music Center is generously awarding a week of summer music camp to one lucky reader…up to a $399 value!!
To enter to win a week of Recreational Music Center summer camp, simply view the camp options at www.recreationalmusiccenter.com, and comment here with your choice. Good luck!
My Budding Artist
This is a picture that Gage drew in kindergarten just a couple of months ago.
I’m not sure if that’s a horse on the left or who those “people” are supposed to be. Let’s just say that this is exactly the type of art I expected of my 6-year-old son who has never had patience for coloring or shown an interest in drawing. It didn’t bother me that all of his pictures needed captions.
But after just four classes at Art with Larisse, we no longer need him to explain what his pictures are about…
Can you believe that these were drawn by the same 6-year-old boy? I was surprised when he said he wanted to take summer art lessons with his sister and even more surprised when I saw how quickly he began to create beautiful pictures.
Gage is so thrilled and proud. We always though of Mallory as our little artist, but now we have two thanks in large part to Art with Larisse!
When I dropped the kids off last week I was admiring the window filled with the blue ribbons won by Larisse’s students at this year’s fair. They’re being honored with an ice cream social next weekend, and you’re invited to go and learn more about how Larisse can help develop a love of art in your child. To attend simply RSVP here.
If you would like to see the difference four classes can make in your child’s drawing, comment below with why art is good for kids. One lucky mom’s guide reader will be selected to enjoy four classes at one of Lariesse’s art studios.
Art with Larisse offers classes for children and adults ages 5 and up. There are three studios to choose from located in La Mesa, Santee and Kearny Mesa. Art with Larisse also offers camps and birthday parties. For more information visit artwithlarisse.com.
Who’s going to the movies this weekend?
If you’re in the North County, why not make it an extra special night out with a visit to Cinepolis Luxury Cinemas? At Cinepolis theaters in Del Mar and La Costa, you can meet up with your friends in the cinema bar before the show starts and enjoy cocktails ranging from bottled beer to Dom Perignon.
Running late? Don’t worry, you can still enjoy that drink with your friends inside the theater from the comfort of your oversized leather recliner.
With the touch of a button on the arm of your recliner, you can order cocktails, gourmet coffees, traditional movie snacks as well as an extensive array of tasty entrees from the Cinepolis menu. It all looked wonderful during my recent visit…artisan cheese and meat plates, teriyaki skewers, grilled sliders and made-to-order sushi rolls. Desserts include cheesecake, lava cake and chocolate fondu, so show up hungry!
At Cinepolis, you’ll pay about $8 per ticket more than at a traditional theater, and in return you’ll get no sticky floors, no crying kids (in the 21 and older theaters, of course), no disgusting bathrooms and a fun variety of food and beverages that makes Cinepolis a great date night or mom’s night out destination.
Want to try Cinepolis for free? Tell us what you think about luxury theaters here to be entered to win a pair of tickets to the Cinepolis movie of your choice. One reader will be randomly selected to win just in time for Mother’s Day!
San Diego is certainly known for its awesome climate, but when you’re planning your little one’s birthday, our summer weather may preclude an outdoor party. Fortunately, there are great indoor playgrounds all across the county ready to host a fantastic party for your family.
FUNbelievable Play, winner of several awards, including Red Tricycle’s best indoor playground, is a place where toddlers and pre-teens alike can have a great time AND they are offering a terrific discount on parties right now!
We’ve celebrated many birthdays in FUNbelievable’s 6,000 square foot air-conditioned play space. There is plenty of seating for adults to comfortably watch the kids run, climb, swing and slide through the mega play structure.
FUNbelievable supports our local military and first responders through “Hero Monday” with $5 entry per child for those with military, police and fire fighter I.D. They are also a valued Mom’s Guide partner, offering a terrific BOGO coupon in this year’s resource book. For more information about one of San Diego’s finest local businesses, visit funbelievableplay.com or call 619.456.2474.
Playgroup Buddies are the Best!
If one of the things you felt thankful for this past week is the love, support and friendship that your playgroup buddies give you, then this blog is for you.
Eight years later, I still treasure the meaningful friendships that grew from my original Parent Connection playgroup.
We’ve decided that, in 2014, the mom’s guide is going to be all about honoring, rewarding and supporting San Diego playgroups. If you, the moms and kids you hang with on a regular basis would be interested in winning a playgroup party, listen up!
During the next twelve months, every registered San Diego playgroup will have the chance to win incredible in-home parties, fabulous field trips and memorable moments courtesy of San Diego’s best local businesses (and mom’s guide sponsors!).
Our 2014 prize list includes:
And that’s just what we have planned for the kids. For moms, we’re giving away…
If any of this sounds like the type of fun your group would like to have, then register your playgroup anytime for your chance to win. Here’s how:
Email to firstname.lastname@example.org your:
1. Playgroup name
2. Playgroup organizer’s name
3. Organizer’s phone number and email address
4. Approximate number of members
5. Age-range of children in the group
Each time a playgroup giveaway becomes available, captains will be notified and given the chance to enter to win. Each playgroup member can enter for one chance to win! Enter as many or as few giveaways as you’d like.
Here’s some fine print:
No purchase necessary. Unsubscribe from the group email at any time. Winners will be randomly selected. Prize packages are limited in quantity. Large playgroups may need to raffle tickets to certain attractions and opportunities. More details to follow each giveaway. Good luck!
San Diego Circus
If you want to share the thrill of a circus with your kids, but without the smelly animals or the stinky ticket price of some other traveling shows, then mark your calendar, and make a date with Circus Vargas. You’re bound to see the giant blue and yellow big top tent in your part of town soon, and you might be wondering if it’s worthy of a family outing. Yes, I have to tell you, yes it is!
Circus Vargas presents its newest spectacular, Magikaria! A Fantastical Magical Experience, at:
Mission Bay Park Feb. 21-March 4
Westfield Parkway March 7-11
Mira Mesa Community Park March 14-18
Vista at Highway 78 at Vista Village Drive March 21-April 1
Magikaria will transport families to a world of magic under the big top, an amazing production bursting with mystery, magic, acrobats, daredevils and more!
Parents are encouraged to arrive thirty minutes early for the interactive pre-show where kids can create magic of their own!
To enter, simply leave a comment. You’re going to have a blast at Circus Vargas!
Say Cheese, Santa
Although I have a soft spot in my heart for pictures of my kids crying on Santa’s lap and other less than perfect holiday moments…
There’s nothing like a great photo with Santa.
When my friend Brandi posted this picture of her kids visiting “The Santa Lady” at Seaport Village, it got me thinking about the best places in San Diego for Christmas photos.
La Mesa’s Christmas in the Village takes place next weekend, and we love visiting Santa at his workshop.
We enjoyed our time with Santa on the North Pole Limited this past weekend.
And the amazing “Santa House” will be opening in Rancho Bernardo on Monday. I’ll post directions and photos on Tuesday!
You can also snap a free picture with Santa at City Lights, San Diego’s year-round Christmas wonderland, each Saturday between 12 and 4 p.m.
So where is your favorite San Diego Santa? Tell us with your comment below, and you will automatically be entered for a chance to win a $25 gift certificate to City Lights, where you are sure to find something that will make your home a little more magical this Christmas.
This is Mal’s first year of kindergarten so it’s our first year of spring break. To tell you the truth, I would love to have her at home with me all day for a whole week. But I have a feeling she would prefer to have something to do besides hanging out with mom…especially if that something involves her school friends or, better yet, those friends we don’t see as much anymore now that many of them are in different schools.
There are a number of spring break camps that I know Mallory and her friends would enjoy, but today I’m writing about East County’s Soccer Shots because they are graciously awarding one lucky reader a full week of soccer camp valued at $140!
From 9 a.m. until 12:30 p.m. on April 2nd through the 6th, Soccer Shots will offer a camp in Poway and in La Mesa for kids ages 3-12. Each day your spring-breaker will enjoy 45 minutes of soccer instruction, a craft period to make a souvenir soccer frame and other fun stuff, lunch and snack breaks followed by another 45 minutes of instruction.
On the final day of camp at Noon there’s a PARENTS VS KIDS SCRIMMAGE! (hmmm, sounds memorable).
Soccer shots provides water, craft supplies and a sibling discount of $20. You provide the lunch and snacks your kids might enjoy. And don’t forget to invite your child’s school or playgroup friends. You can win a spot in either the Poway or La Mesa spring break camp by simply leaving your name and your child’s age in the comment section below.
Soccer shots is a nationally franchised soccer program created by former professional players. They offer quality, high-energy soccer programs with principled instruction wrapped in fun. For more information about their programs, visit www.soccershots.org.
Please note that all Soccer Shots camps are subject to cancellation if fewer than five (5) students are registered to participate.
Seeking Special Correspondent
I am so bummed that we cannot make it to this weekend’s gingerbread house decorating class at the Park Hyatt Aviara in Carlsbad. I would LOVE to make my version of this creation, currently on display at the hotel…
The hotel was kind enough to offer us a free adult class to me or a free child’s class to the kids. But since we can’t attend, I am passing the opportunity onto YOU. Well, one of you who will be randomly selected to go in my place.
The one “catch” is that you must be prepared to share your photos from the class and a brief write up about the experience with Mom’s Guide readers. No experience necessary! I’ll help you pull your post together. It will be awesome!
Here’s the nitty gritty:
Gingerbread House Decorating Classes at the Park Hyatt Aviara Resort
Delight in building your very own work of art in our Gingerbread House Decorating classes at Park Hyatt Aviara Resort. Learn gingerbread recipes, master expert decorating techniques, and create an epicurean masterpiece to display in your home this joyous season!
Kids Classes – December 7, 21, 22, 23 from 2pm – 3:30pm
Adult Classes – December 7, 14, 21 from 9am – 12pm
The Park Hyatt Aviara is located in Carlsbad at 7100 Aviara Resort Drive.
Please enter to win one admission to this Saturday’s kids’ or adult class. Simply reply to this post with your choice of class. One winner will be selected to win at Noon tomorrow and contacted by email to coordinate details.
What a fun way to get into the holiday spirit! Good luck 🙂 Oh, and check out these other great hotel holiday happenings…
Teddy Bear Tea, Fridays – Sundays, December 6 – 22 at 11am
An annual favorite, Teddy Bear Tea delights kids of all ages while helping a worthy cause. Children are invited to bring new stuffed animals to be donated to Rady Children’s Hospital San Diego. This charming holiday tea service is followed by the “Peppermint Princess” who gathers the children around for captivating story time.
Holiday Jazz with Tiba, Friday December 6 & Saturday December 7
Tiba transforms the Lobby Lounge into a Jazz Standards Piano Bar with her sultry voice and stunning stage presence. Spice up your night with a Pink Peppercorn Martini and indulge in an array of tapas as this native New Orleans performer re-creates a luxurious Golden Age for your entertainment. 12/6 & 12/7 from 7 – 10 PM, Park Hyatt Aviara Resort Lobby Lounge. Complimentary admission.
Peppermint Mountain Village in the Lobby
A must-see attraction in Carlsbad during the holidays. Executive Pastry Chef Franck Riffaud and his team of artisans show off their skill and creativity when they unveil the enchanting 10-foot tall Gingerbread Mountain Village. Using more than 22 pounds of gingerbread dough, 400 pounds of sugar icing and 18 pounds of chocolate, this winter wonderland is entirely edible.
Festival of the Trees in the Lobby corridors
A 15-year San Diego tradition! The Park Hyatt Aviara lobby is once again transformed into a magical showplace of the season, the “Festival of Trees.” This silent auction of professionally designed and decorated holiday trees features imaginative and breathtaking displays, and bidding will take place from November 28 – December 22. In the true spirit of giving, hotel visitors place bids as high as $3,000 to purchase these unique creations. Proceeds benefit the Semper Fi Injured Marine Fund.
Shake Your (baby) Booty
Our daughter Emma likes to shake her groove thang. Simple as that.
She will shimmy that 2 year old rump anywhere and everywhere. She will break it down at the grocery store, the mall, in her carseat, riding in the elevator, and her favorite place of all…the living room during our daily afternoon “Dance Party USA”. Music moves her, so I decided it was time for a music class.
While researching classes in the San Diego area, I found some great options. After consulting my “Council of Parents” (aka my Facebook friends) I decided Music Together was the place to be.
Music Together is a program that was introduced in 1987 as a fun and educationally sound approach to music learning. It grew quickly, and licensed Music Together centers opened all over the country. The classes are based on the recognition that all children are musical. They can learn to sing in tune and keep a beat in a family-like setting of children ages 0-5 and their caregivers.
Ms. Tejal Kaji is the Director of Kids Beats Music Together, LLC. She is energetic, welcoming, fun, and you can tell she loves her job! One thing I was a little nervous about before class is the fact that caregivers are encouraged to sing along. Whoa. Luckily, Tejal makes even tone-deaf…ahem, “musically-challenged” folks such as myself, feel right at home.
And, once all of the other adults are belting out the tunes, you (may) want to join right in. There is singing, dance time and an entire portion of the class dedicated to the kids making their own music with drums, egg shakers, bells and other instruments. Between learning some new songs, watching Emma and the other kids dance a jig and taking home a great cd, we were really happy with the class. Tejal also offers free sample classes if you’d like to try it out before committing.
The nitty gritty:
12636 Poway Rd.
Poway, CA 92064
9474 Black Mountain Rd
San Diego, CA 92126
12621 Poway Rd
Poway, CA 92064
9919 Hibert St., Ste B
San Diego, CA 92131
Current Spring Schedule (which may change based on enrollment)
Mondays: 9:30A — Scripps Ranch
Tuesdays: 10A and 11A — Academy of World Dance n Arts (Poway)
Wednesdays: 9:45A and 11A — Rhythm Studios
Thursdays: 10:30A — Scripps Ranch
Fridays: 9A — My Kids Clubhouse (Poway)
Saturdays: 9:30a at Rhythm Studio (9474 black mtn rd.). 9 week class rather than a 10 week class
Currently Scheduled FREE Sample Classes:
Thursday, March 14 at 10A — Scripps Ranch
Friday, March 15 at 9A — My Kids Clubhouse
Monday, March 18 at 9:30A — Scripps Ranch
Wednesday, March 20 at 9:15A — Academy of World Dance n Arts
Thursday, March 21 at 10A — Rhythm Studios
Friday, March 22 at 9A — My Kids Clubhouse
Friday, April 12 at 9A — My Kids Clubhouse
An RSVP is required for the free classes by calling Tejal at 858.248.9034 or going online to www.kidsbeatsmt.com.
Family with 1 child: $195
Family 2nd child: $155
Family 3rd child: Free*
New family fee: $20
*Please note: for additional child discounts, the additional children need to be a sibling of the first registered child. Also, siblings under 7 months of age at the start of the semester are FREE with a registered child. I honestly think our 4 month old son enjoyed the class just as much as our daughter. Or maybe Tejal’s beautiful singing put him in a trance!
Now the part you’ve all been waiting for. Get ready. This is big.
The first 5 moms to leave a comment at www.facebook.com/kidsbeatsmt will receive $50 off of the next 10 week session of classes beginning April 12th. Winners will receive 2 CDs, a song book and 10 weeks of FUN for $145.
Karl Johnson is a third generation silhouette artist whose work has been featured in more than 30 magazines including The O List in Oprah, People and Elle Decor. He has created silhouettes for thousands of special people including celebrities and their children like Jennifer Garner, Reese Witherspoon, Jennifer Lopez, Drew Barrymore & Steven Spielberg. Now YOU can win a 5 x 7 signature silhouette of your special person at the Karl Johnson Silhouette Event at Baby Vie this Friday, August 3rd.
Two hundred years ago, long before the camera was invented, someone wishing to have an inexpensive portrait created of their loved ones would have visited a silhouette artist. Within minutes and using only a pair of scissors and a skillful eye, he would have produced a wonderful little image with a remarkable resemblance to his subject.
The name Silhouette traces back to the mid-18th century French finance minister, Etienne de Silhouette. Because his name was synonymous with doing things cheaply and because he was fond of making these images himself, this artform was named after him.
In America, Silhouettes were highly popular from about 1790 to 1840. The invention of the camera signaled the end of the Silhouette as a widespread form of portraiture. However, their popularity is being reborn in a new generation of people who appreciate the Silhouette as a nostalgic and unique way of capturing a loved one’s image.
Visit the CutArts.com website here for more information about this Friday’s special event. Enter to win your own charming keepsake that will be treasured for generations by posting a comment below! Winner will be selected tomorrow afternoon. 🙂
Summer of Soccer
USA! USA! USA!
If your home is like mine, the World Cup is on whether USA is playing or not. Haven’t you heard? Summer is for Soccer!
If your family has soccer fever, check out Soccer Shots World Cup Summer Camps.
My kids have played two seasons of Soccer Shots camps, and both my son and daughter loved the coaches, learned a lot and want to go back again! This weekend Soccer Shots is offering free trial classes, and I’m excited to be able to give one lucky mom’s guide reader a FREE week of summer camp.
Each week this summer, Soccer Shots is offering half-days of action packed fun. Children are split into two different age groups (3-5 years & 6-10 years) and each camp curriculum includes the World Cup, player skill development, and character development.
Soccer Shots camps feature:
• Energetic, professional coaches
• 1:10 coach to player ratio
• Individual soccer skill development
• Team building
• Fun fitness activities
• Coordination, balance, and agility development
• World Cup lesson-of-the-day
Every Camper Receives:
• Soccer Shots T-shirt
• Special end of camp prize
• Summer Camp certificate
• Player evaluation
To enter to win, simply list which Soccer Shots location would work best for your family in the comment section. Choose from:
Carmel Valley / Del Mar
Pacific Beach / La Jolla
Mira Mesa / Sorrento Valley
Mission Valley / Serra Mesa
For more information, please visit SoccerShots.org, or contact Jim Hill at 619-566-9566 and email@example.com.
Soccer Shots World Cup Camp winner will be selected this Thursday morning while USA is playing. Go Team!
The Adventures of Pug & Doug
Do you remember when I collaborated with Adventures by the Book to bring the illustrator of the Fancy Nancy series to San Diego last spring? That event was incredibly popular and will be repeated this year, but I’m super excited to tell you about another Adventures by the Book event for kiddos; The Pug & Doug Drawing Adventure with author Steve Breen at Mon Petit Chateau.
In addition to being a children’s book author, Steve Breen is a two-time Pulitzer Prize winning editorial cartoonist. So, in addition to a reading of his book to our children, this “adventure” includes multiple drawing demonstrations by the author. If your child has shown any interest at all in art, this is a not-to-miss event.
Adults go free with a child, and the child’s $39 ticket includes the event, an autographed copy of Pug & Doug and a day pass to play at the fabulous Mon Petit Chateau. I hope you’ll join Mallory, Gage and me at this unique event next week.
Here’s the scoop:
PUG & DOUG DRAWING ADVENTURE
When: Saturday, January 26, 2013 starting at 2:00pm
Where: Mon Petit Chateau Mommy Cafe
861 Harold Place, Suite 204
Chula Vista 91914
Cost: $39 per child (includes autographed book and Mon Petit day pass); accompanying adults are free
For more information visit www.adventuresbythebook.com
The Hills Are Alive…
I love that my kids think that the San Diego Junior Theater‘s production of The Sound of Music is the best junior theater musical they’ve seen so far. I totally agree, but I wasn’t expecting that reaction from them. The performance is intended for children ages 6 and older because of mature topics like falling in love, becoming a nun and the Third Reich. But the music and the talent of those young actors transcend the grown-up themes and leave even little ones humming “The hills are alive, with the sound of music….” all day long.
The Sound of Music opened last weekend and is the first of eight shows coming to the Casa del Prado Theater in Balboa Park for the 2012-2013 season. Some performances, like The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (abridged) and Guys and Dolls, are recommended for ages 10 and older, but others will be fun for all ages including Doctor Dolittle, A Little Princess, Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing and Go, Dog, Go!
Just before The Sound of Music began, the sweetest little girl was brought up on stage and everyone in the theater sang “happy birthday” to her. She was presented with a personalized and autographed show poster and, apparently, had partied with the cast before the 2 p.m. performance. I didn’t know that the San Diego Junior Theater offered birthday parties in addition to camps and classes. In light of how much Mallory loved The Sound of Music, I wish I had booked her birthday party with this cast. What a special memory that would be.
It doesn’t have to be your birthday for you to get a chance to treat your family to The Sound of Music or another Junior Theater production because I’m giving away a family 4-pack of tickets good for the 2012-2013 season show of your choice. If you would like to be entered to win, simply reply below with your name and whether or not your children have ever been to the theater for a live performance.
It’s a very Veggie birthday, and the present is for you! Enter here to win a pair of tickets. 5 winners will be chosen!
Join Bob & Larry and the entire VeggieTales crew as they put on the biggest birthday party ever celebrating VeggieTales’ 20 years of stories, songs and fun. The show is filled with silly song favorites and memorable entertainment for the whole family! You won’t want to miss this one-of-a-kind celebration!
Happy Birthday Bob & Larry!
La Mesa, CA
Saturday, October 12th
DOORS OPEN AT 2PM
SHOW STARTS AT 3PM
TICKETS ON SALE NOW!
Use the rafflecopter form below to enter. Good luck!
PS — looks like Rafflecopter failed to list the address for the Veggie Tales Live FB page: https://www.facebook.com/events/474717629282156/
Yoga Camp Giveaway
Are you living a hurried, stressed life? Too much to do and not enough time? How might that be affecting your children?
A nice yoga class helps adults and kids alike learn to breathe deeper, look inward and start to slow down. It’s important to me to give my children this type of coping skill since life will only get more hectic for them as they age. And what kid doesn’t love stretching like a dog, balancing like a flamingo and standing strong and tall like a tree?
Mallory and Gage’s first yoga experience was with the wonderful Aryn Rannazzizi. This summer Aryn is offering a yoga camp for kids, ages 3-8.
The five week program runs June 19 – July 17 and July 24 – August 21 and costs only $45 per session.
Yoga Camp for Kids will take place at Infinite Yoga, 2400 Kettner Boulevard in Studio 115. Enter for your chance to be the one lucky mom’s guide reader to win a spot! Simply comment below with your favorite yoga pose.
Winner will be announced next weekend. Namaste 🙂