Celebrate the Holidays at Terranea Resort

If you’re thinking about taking a short trip during this holiday season, Terranea Resort has a calendar full of holiday events for the whole family. Located in beautiful Rancho Palos Verdes, Terranea feels a world away from the hustle and bustle of busy Los Angeles and the chaos of the holiday season.

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Celebration of the Season – Christmas Tree Lighting

Sunday, December 3, 2017 | 5 pm | Catalina Terrace
Complimentary with toy donation
Celebrate the start of the holiday season with Terranea’s annual Christmas tree lighting. There will be live music and entertainment and holiday crafts. Donations of unwrapped gifts for Toys for Tots will be accepted during the event.

Kickoff to Christmas with Mrs. Claus

Sunday, December 3, 2017 | 6 pm to 8 pm | Sea Beans
Complimentary; donations welcome
After the tree lighting ceremony, Mrs. Claus will be on hand to collect letters to share with Santa Claus. Stop by for popcorn and holiday cookie decorating as well.

Breakfast with Santa

Saturday, December 9, 2017 | Seatings: 9 am, 9:30 am, 10 am | Grand Ballroom
Adults $59, Children 2-10 $27, Children under 2 free
Join Santa for a memorable breakfast and photo opportunities. Breakfast includes bakery and waffle stations, beverage and hot food stations, as well as an egg station, kids buffet, festive crafts, and pictures with Santa.

Kids Club Holiday Gift Workshop

Daily in December | 2 pm to 4 pm | Grand Ballroom
Child $80 (ages 4 -12) – Advance reservations required
In this workshop, kids can make a gingerbread house, a cuddly creation, holiday crafts and decorations to give as gifts to family members and friends.

‘Twas the Night Before Christmas

Sunday, December 24, 2017 | 5 pm | Lobby Living Room
All ages | Complimentary for resort guests
Gather by the fire in Terranea’s Lobby Living Room for a special rendition of ‘Twas the Night before Christmas.

Postcards to the North Pole

December 1 to 24, 2017 | During Hours of Operation | Tide Pool Kids Club
Guests of all ages can fill out a personalized postcard to send off to Jolly Ole Saint Nick himself. You might even get a response back from Santa!

Elf Tuck-Ins

Nightly in December | 6 pm to 10 pm
Child $35 – Advance reservations required
Let one of Santa’s helpers send your sweet one off to bed. A special stocking is also included in the elves’ visit.

Christmas Eve and Christmas Day Feasts

Sunday, December 24 and Monday, December 25
See restaurants for details
Terranea Resort’s restaurants will feature a variety of Christmas Eve and Christmas Day feasts.
Christmas Eve Brunch Buffet at Catalina Kitchen – holiday favorites, carving station featuring turducken, local seafood, raw bar, chef’s specials, salad bar, charcuterie, cheese and desserts. 9 am to 2 pm; Adults $75, Children (ages 5-10) $35, Children under 5 free
Christmas Eve Dinner at Mar’sel – traditional three-course meal of holiday classics, a la carte menu also available. 5 pm to 10 pm; Adults $135, Children (ages 5-12) $30
Christmas Eve Dinner Buffet at Catalina Kitchen – holiday favorites, carving station, local seafood, chef’s specials, steakhouse accompaniments, raw bar, salad bar, charcuterie, cheese and desserts with live entertainment. 6 am to 9 pm; Adults $95, Children (ages 5-10) $35, Children under 5 free
Feliz Navidad at Nelson’s – enjoy the Mexican tradition of tamales three ways: green chile chicken tamale, beef tamale, and pumpkin tamale served with rice and beans with tres leches cake for dessert. Sunday, December 24, 2017 to Monday, December 25, 2017 11 am to 9 pm; $27
Christmas Dinner at Mar’sel – five-course meal of holiday classics, wine pairing and a la carte menu also available. 5 pm to 10 pm; Adults $155, Children (ages 5-12) $45
Other meals, in-room dining and meals-to-go also available – see resort for details

Things to Do in Las Vegas as a New Mom

Life with infants can be hectic to say the least. Life with twin infants is a daily struggle to get by. I realized out of the blue that I had a credit on Southwest Airlines that was going to expire by the end of the year. After a few text messages and phone calls, I was planning a trip to Las Vegas for the following weekend. Thank goodness we moved to Southern California. Otherwise, my credit would have gone to waste.

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With hubby, the kids and grandparents back home and my friend occupied for much of the weekend, I found myself going solo for about half of the weekend. This was a-okay by me since I have traveled a lot by myself throughout the years. I decided that this weekend would be a time to relax and get some rest and pamper myself with food and other treats. I also kept myself occupied by pumping throughout the day. Momma’s gotta bring back that liquid gold to the babes and keep up my milk supply!

Here are my top 5 picks for enjoying Las Vegas as a new mom without the kiddos

Bellagio Gardens and Fountain

On every trip I take to Las Vegas, I have to visit the Bellagio Conservatory & Botanical Gardens. Their displays are so impressive even by Vegas standards, and I love seeing what they come up for the different seasons. For Fall 2017, the theme was “Proud as a Peacock.”

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In addition to the main peacock display, there were two other displays featuring a willow tree and scarecrows and another with goblins.

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While at the Bellagio, watching at least one round of the Fountain show is a must-do for me. Yes, it is cheesy but I find the water mesmerizing and somehow romantic. I was actually able to catch shows while I was both getting to and leaving from the hotel.

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So beautiful at night!

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Having grown up as a Chinese-American in Southern California, I went to Las Vegas A LOT! Doing some of the things off the beaten path appeal to me. On our first night in Vegas, we took a late night tour of the Neon Museum, and by late night, it was super late night for a new mom! 11 PM! What?!

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I definitely recommend a night tour of the museum so that you can see all of the signs lit up in their intended glory.

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The tour also provided a ton of information about the history of Las Vegas. Although it was hard for me to pay attention with my distracted, foggy mommy brain!

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Eat All the Foods

As a new mom, it is not unusual for me to be eating sandwiches with cold cuts, microwaved yakisoba from Costco or bagels and cream cheese because there is just no time to even think about what you are going to eat. Let alone make a proper meal. Luckily, my mom is here to make many of my meals, but when you’re starving and home alone or it’s early in the morning, I make due.

I definitely indulged myself on this trip, which is so easy to do with all of the variety of foods, celebrity chef restaurants and buffets. I must say, though, that restaurants on The Strip are pricey!

My most memorable meals on this trip included an early solo dinner at Momofuku. It was still happy hour so I enjoyed my pork belly bun and ramen at the bar.

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When I go to Vegas, I have to eat at least one meal at one of the buffets on The Strip. The Bacchanal Buffet at Caesars Palace is one of my favorites, and it did not disappoint. It’s so hard to chose what to eat when you have limited stomach capacity! #firstworldproblems

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I had some more time to myself while the others went to a festival out in the desert, so I enjoyed a solo afternoon tea at the Mandarin Oriental Hotel. I was given a beautiful seat next to the window and since the Tea Lounge is located on the 23rd floor, I had a gorgeous view.

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The food and tea, ambiance and service made for a wonderful afternoon treat.

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Now, I have to point out a specific dish rather than an entire meal as this dish was so amazing. I am drooling thinking about it. The meatballs at Rao’s (also at Caesars Palace) are ridiculously delicious! Go eat them!

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Visit Red Rock Canyon

With all that eating and the fact that I have probably exercised four times since having my babies, getting out and going on a hike sounded wonderful. Red Rock Canyon is located only about half an hour from The Strip and is a great way to get outdoors and away from the craziness of Las Vegas.

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Unfortunately, we were running behind schedule and could only do the driving tour of Red Rock Canyon. Next time, I want to do one of the actual hikes. It is breathtaking. My phone camera does not do it justice at all!

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Spa Day

For a day of utter relaxation and tranquility, I visited one of The Strip’s many hotel spas, which also happened to be at the Bellagio. Like many of the other hotel spas, the Bellagio Salon and Spa offers day passes which allows for day use of their facilities even if you are not receiving a spa treatment. We received a $40 discounted day pass since we were staying at another MGM property. The girls and I spent the day using the sauna, steam room and Jacuzzis. I enjoyed their fresh fruit, coffee, juices and flavored waters. Also, the spa has everything you need to head to your next destination (showers, toiletries, hair styling products) so we were able to head straight to a show after our time at the spa! Unfortunately, I was either so relaxed or so tired from being a new mommy that I fell asleep at the show. Oops.

Being away from the kids for a few nights is hard and I probably wouldn’t have gone away if it were not for the fact that my airline ticket was expiring. I did feel refreshed and my mind felt clearer when I returned though. So if you feel ready to leave your kiddos at home, I say do it. It’s not for everyone, but all families work differently. I think it was a trip well taken!

Free Hanna Andersson pajamas on the #hannajamstour

Did you spot the deer this weekend in Los Angeles? The Hanna Andersson #hannajamstour has been visiting cities around the country giving out free jammies, and this weekend they spent some time in Manhattan Beach on Saturday and Brentwood and Santa Monica on Sunday!

To find out where the deer is going to be, all you need to do is check the @happyhannas instagram account the morning of, where the exact location of the tour stop will be posted.

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After breakfast, I checked Instagram to find out the location in Manhattan Beach and the twins, hubby and I headed out. The deer was super easy to find and since we got there a little before 9 am, there were only a few people in line.
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We filled out waivers and quickly got two pairs of jammies for the boys. Hanna Andersson products are so well made, and I loved the adorable, seasonal candy striped print and that they are made of 100% organic cotton.

Since we still had a while before their next feeding time, we decide to take a nice stroll along the strand and pier. It was a beautiful day!

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The #hannajamstour continues until November 17 in the following cities:

November 15 – Seattle

November 16 – San Francisco

November 17 – Burlingame and Portland

Hope you get some jammies for your little ones!