38th Birthday Weekend Recap

There was a time long ago when hubby and I would jet out of town for our birthdays. One year, it was a weekend in Bermuda. Another time, it was a hiking trip to Acadia National Park. Things have changed for us now that we have kids.

This year was significantly lower key and more oriented around kids’ activities.

Flower Hills Maker’s Bazaar

On Saturday, we headed to the Flower Hill Maker’s Bazaar in the Del Mar‘s Flower Hill Promenade.

The event had so much to do for the kiddos! There was Pam’s Farm, a petting zoo with a sheep, goat, pig, ducks, chickens and a shih tzu pup!

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I understand this pig so well! Sleep is nice.

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Pam let the little guys get on top of the sheep. So adorable!

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There was a little area for lounging on blankets and pillows with a ping pong table and corn hole.

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My mom took part in the charity cake walk, and she won a cake in the first round! It was funny because this wound up serving as my birthday cake.

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Flower Hill Promenade has a little playground, and the twins really enjoyed climbing and running around before lunch.

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We also got two amazing balloon animals created for the boys. Big Brother also got his face painted! That’s a little hippo on his cheek.

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Wow, I cannot believe how fun this event was. On top of what I have shown you, there was also live music by Kathryn the Grape and a choir group as well as succulent and painted picture frame make-and-takes. We were pooped after about 4 hours at the bazaar.

Dinner at Giovanni’s

That evening, we had dinner at Giovanni’s in Linda Vista with my parents and my brother’s family.

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Balboa Park

On Sunday, we all met up again at Balboa Park to visit the Marie Hitchcock Puppet Theatre.

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It was the boys’ first time in a theatre, and they got to be big boys and sit in their boosters all by themselves. Big Brother really enjoyed the puppet show, while the other two lost interest after awhile.

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After the show, we got to pet the puppets and take photos with them. Hi, Baxter Bunny!

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We had lunch at the Home Plate Cafe and then continued on to the Museum of Man without the rest of the group. My parents and brother had to leave.

I checked out the Museum Pass from the library which provides admission for 2 adults and 4 children, so we were able to visit for free!

Our favorite exhibits was the Monsters! exhibit and Adventure Kids in Egypt.

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That evening, hubby took care of the kiddos so I could go have a massage and cupping session! Woohoo!

It was such a fun-filled weekend and I am so happy to have spent it with my family.

Things to Do with Twins in San Diego: The New Children’s Museum

Now that my little bundles are walking bundles, it is time for us to expand our activities. We recently headed downtown to visit The New Children’s Museum for the first time. My parents were in town for a couple of days, so having them here made our trip to the museum much easier than if I had been alone with the boys.

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I have never really been to a children’s museum as far as I recall, so I did not have much of an idea of what to expect.

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Wobbleland

I took a look at the map and decided to head up stairs first as it seemed to have the most toddler friendly activities and I was right! The boys loved Wobbleland, and I found it to be incredibly adorable! The whole area was food themed.

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The boys sailed along in a watermelon sailboat, climbed through a slice of Swiss cheese, collected peas (balls) that go into a pea pod and stacked tomato slices.

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Sitting in an orange half

To be honest, though, what they were most interested in was playing with the balls and walking around freely and exploring!

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Adorable toddler plate

While I tried to get lots of photos of us, they were not having it! These two little toddlers are so busy and refused to have their play interrupted.

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Tot Studio

Across the way from Wobbleland is Tot Studio. Here, little ones can participate in daily (except Friday) sensory painting from 10:30 to 11:30. We missed this activity, but we still headed over for the boys to go down the slide and play with some different toys.

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The Rain House

This little structure was super cute but did not have much for our boys to do.

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Beansprouts Cafe

Since it was our first time visiting, we decided to have lunch at the on-site Beansprouts Cafe. Apparently, you are allowed to also pack your own lunches, but I was not aware of this.

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The menu features simple sandwiches, salads and pizza. I had The Great Turkado (turkey and avocado sandwich) with creamy tomato soup, and I was delighted by how good my lunch was! I was pleasantly surprised.

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Paint Studio

The outside area has a paint studio, where you can paint a 1950s pickup truck, and a clay studio for art making, but again, these activities were not suitable for my kids’ age.

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No Rules…Except

“No Rules…Except” has a variety of mattresses and tire-shaped pillows for climbing, jumping and playing on. So cute! Another good thing is that there are two separate sections of the exhibit, one for kids under 4 and another for bigger kids.

Older brother was not enjoying being here, so we let little brother play for a while before leaving this area. I didn’t want older brother to get too upset.

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Blocks

Right next to Wobbleland are two areas of blocks. This was our final stop of the day before heading home for naptime.

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The museum was also feeling more crowded with bigger kids, so that was our cue to leave.

Overall, it was a fun day, and the twins absolutely had a blast! I am not so sure how often we will be coming back, however. I feel the cost of entrance is a little bit too steep to justify. Admission is $14 per person over 1 year old and $10 for seniors. For our group, that equaled $62 for admission alone. We also paid for parking and lunch, so it was not an inexpensive excursion. This, plus the fact that they are still too little for many of the exhibits, makes me hesitate to plan a return trip to The New Children’s Museum in the near future. It’s just a little too pricey and not enough value at this moment. I’m sure we will be back when they get older though!

Parting Tip: Make sure you wear easy on and off shoes and non-holey socks because most of the play areas are shoe-free zones.

Things to Do in San Diego with Baby – Flying Leatherneck Aviation Museum

After our first few months here in San Diego, I am quickly becoming aware of what a wonderful, family-friendly city it is! There is just so much to do that I have to really pace myself in order to avoid burn out.

I am so lucky to be able to be a stay-at-home mom at the moment, but at the same time, I feel like this time is flying by and I want my twins to experience as much as possible before I have to go back to the reality of work-life.

For now, I am going to enjoy all that San Diego has to offer for our little family.

Recently, I took the boys to visit the Flying Leatherneck Aviation Museum.

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Located on Marine Corps. Air Station Miramar, the Museum is the only museum in the world dedicated to United States Marine Corps. aviation. “Leatherneck” has long been a nickname for Marines, hence the name of the museum. It holds the largest and most complete collection of vintage Marine aircraft, with 27 aircraft on display.

One of the most famous pieces in the collection is “Lady Ace.” She played a key role in the evacuation of Saigon in 1975, during which she landed on the rooftop of the US Embassy in Saigon to evacuate the US Ambassador just prior to the fall of Saigon.

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Another amazing thing about the museum is that it is staffed almost entirely by veteran volunteers. On the day we visited, they were extremely friendly and helped me get the stroller outside. I also saw them giving tours to other visitors. We had a limited amount of time, otherwise, I would have loved to hear their stories.

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Although the boys did not seem super interested in looking at the planes, I liked being able to give them exposure to these important parts of our history and getting them to see new things.

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Besides the outdoor exhibit of aircraft, the museum also features indoor exhibitions that highlight Marine artifacts, including uniforms, patches and awards.

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The museum is entirely stroller friendly, although it might have been a smoother ride for the boys with a full-size stroller, rather than the umbrella stroller.

I look forward to bringing the boys back to the museum once they are older. The Flying Leatherneck Museum also holds annual “Open Cockpit Days” and visitors can sit in the cockpits of certain aircraft and in the cargo area of a helicopter. That sounds super fun for everyone and is definitely something I have not done either!

The Flying Leatherneck Museum is located on MCAS Miramar. Enter through Museum Gate on Miramar Road, between Camino Ruiz and Cabot Drive. The gate is marked by flags.

Museum Month: California Center for the Arts, Escondido

Did you take advantage of Macy’s Museum Month in February? Our month was so ridiculously busy that we were only able to make use of the pass one time. The combination of having lots of family visiting and being sick kept us from using it more.

Not to worry though. There is always next year and the next to visit some more of San Diego’s many fantastic museums!

We had a Saturday free, so we drove over to Escondido to visit the California Center of the Arts’ Museum. 

The museum is currently featuring two exhibits. The first one is Niki de Saint Phalle: Mythical California. After learning more about this artist, I really want to make a trip to see her Queen Califia’s Magical Circle sculpture garden also in Escondido! The exhibit featured the piece in miniature.

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The second exhibit is called Inspired: A Mosaic Invitational, which features contemporary mosaic pieces. I loved how whimsical and kid-friendly most of the pieces were. They ranged from a junk food tree to a mosaic carousel horse, bear and turtle sculptures!

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The museum is small, but it was definitely worth the trek out to Escondido, especially since we combined it with lunch at Stone Brewing Co. I loved sitting outside on the patio in the middle of February! It was gorgeous!

Did you get to use the Macy’s Museum Month pass this year?

Macy’s Museum Month

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All February long, you can pick up a Macy’s Museum Month pass at any Macy’s in San Diego, Temecula or Imperial Valley. The museum pass admits up to four people at half price to over 40 museums in San Diego County.

Participating museums are so diverse that you can learn about art, history or enjoy nature. Here is the roster of museums included on the Museum Pass:

Adobe Chapel
Barona Cultural Center & Museum
Birch Aquarium at Scripps
California Center for the Arts, Escondido Museum
California Surf Museum
Coronado Museum of History & Art
Fleet Science Center (Galleries only)
Flying Leatherneck Aviation Museum
Gaslamp Museum at the Davis-Horton House
Heritage of the Americas Museum
Japanese Friendship Garden
Junipero Serra Museum
La Jolla Historical Society
Living Coast Discovery Center
Lux Art Institute
Maritime Museum of San Diego
Marston House Museum & Gardens
Mingei International Museum
Miniature Engineering Craftsmanship Museum
Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego, Downtown
Museum of Making Music
Museum of Photographic Arts
New Americans Museum
Oceanside Museum of Art
San Diego Air & Space Museum
San Diego Archaeological Center
San Diego Art Institute
San Diego Automotive Museum
San Diego Botanic Garden
San Diego Children’s Discovery Museum
San Diego Chinese Historical Museum
San Diego History Center
San Diego Model Railroad Museum
San Diego Natural History Museum (The Nat)
The New Children’s Museum
The San Diego Museum of Art
The Water Conservation Garden
Tijuana Estuary Visitor Center
Timken Museum of Art
USS Midway Museum
Veterans Museum at Balboa Park
Visions Art Museum
Warner-Carrillo Ranch House
Whaley House Museum
Women’s Museum of California

I cannot wait to explore some of these museums with my little ones!

For more information, visit the San Diego Museum Council.