Month: September 2015

Acorn Day

AcornDayFlier2015-page-001Come celebrate Acorn Day under the oaks at O’Neill Regional Park. It’s a free, family-friendly day of excitement and learning with activities for every age:

  • free crafts for kids
  • live butterfly enclosure
  • games, face painting
  • live music
  • nature exhibits
  • oak tree planting
  • ukulele lessons for kids.

Guided nature hikes to the Water Tower will be offered at 9 a.m. and 10 a.m.

Presentations throughout the day include Journeys to the Past, Tucker Wildlife Sanctuary, Inside the Outdoors, the Orange County Sheriff’s Department Reserve K-9 Program, The Hummingbird Story and a live butterfly release at 2:30 p.m. by Western Monarch Guardians.

Participants also include OC Trails, The Helena Modjeska Foundation, Tree of Life Nursery, Orange County Fire Watch, OC Parks, Earthroots Field School, The Saddleback Area Historical Society, Southern California Bluebird Club, Saddleback Canyon Riders, SHARE Mountain Bike Club, Southwestern Field Herping Associates and The Institute for Wildlife Studies and more.

  • When: Saturday, October 3, 2015 from 10:00 am – 3:00 pm
  • Where: O’Neill Regional Park, 30892 Trabuco Canyon Road
    Trabuco Canyon, CA 92678
  • Cost: FREE

Celebrate with Once Upon A Storybook


My all-time absolute favorite children’s book shop, Once Upon a Storybook, is celebrating their 1st year anniversary!

If you’ve visited this book shop you know why I love this place so much. If you haven’t, take this as your perfect opportunity!

Once Upon a Storybook is celebrating their 1st year Anniversary with all of us on Saturday, October 3, 2105 from 11:00 am -6:00 pm. Pete the Cat who will be present for storytimes and photo ops. They’ll have pre-Christmas specials and organic gourmet popsicles from the Mom & Pop Shop Truck!

  • Pete the Cat storytimes are scheduled at 11:00 am & 2:00pm

  • Mom & Pop Shop Truck will be present from 12:00 pm -3:00 pm

  • Every customer will receive a coupon to use on another day in October

Once Upon a Storybook is located in the Enderle Shopping Center at 17300 E. 17th St. #C, Tustin, CA 92780. You won’t want to miss this fun-filled celebration!


Spooky Science


Are you ready to become a Mad Scientist at the Discovery Cube OC? Spooky Science is creeping into town, be prepared to see bugs, bones, x-rays, holograms and view live demonstrations with dry ice.

This spooky exhibit begin October 3 and runs through November 1, 2015. Enjoy weekend costume parties and take home goodie-bags!

Don’t miss these festive activities on the weekends:

  • Monster Mash Parade
  • Thor’s Bug Safari
  • Dr. Sue’s Traveling Insects and Arthropod Zoo
  • Rat and Mouse Club of America

Schedule of Events:

Saturday, 10/3 – Rat and Mouse Club of America (11am-3pm)

Sunday, 10/4 – Rat and Mouse Club of America (11am-3pm), Thor’s Bug Safari (12pm-1pm & 1pm-2pm)

Saturday, 10/10 – Rat and Mouse Club of America (11am-3pm)

Sunday, 10/11 – Rat and Mouse Club of America (11am-3pm), Dr. Sue’s Arthropod and Bug Zoo (11am-3pm)

Saturday, 10/17 – Rat and Mouse Club of America (11am-3pm)
OC Vector Control (9am-5pm)

Sunday, 10/18 – Rat and Mouse Club of America (11am-3pm)
Thor’s Bug Safari (12pm-1pm & 1pm-2pm), OC Vector Control (9am-5pm)

Saturday, 10/24 – Rat and Mouse Club of America (11am-3pm)

Sunday, 10/25 – Rat and Mouse Club of America (11am-3pm), Dr. Sue’s Arthropod and Bug Zoo (11am-3pm)

Saturday, 10/31 – Rat and Mouse Club of America (11am-3pm)Thor’s Bug Safari (12pm-1pm & 1pm-2pm)

Sunday, 11/1 – Rat and Mouse Club of America (11am-3pm)

Discovery Cube Orange County is located at 2500 N. Main Street,
Santa Ana, CA  92705

Check their website for admission fees & hours of operation.


It’s National Coffee Day


It’s National Coffee Day!!! Doesn’t that make you want to do the happy dance or is it just me? It’s definitely one of my weakness in life. Although I have cut down my overall consumption of coffee, going to a coffee house and having a great cup of Joe is like a reward system for me.

To celebrate this non-holiday, holiday, here’s a list of FREE or next to free offers on this awesome day. Go get your coffee and do the happy dance.


Krispy Kreme – get a free 12 oz. coffee and an original glazed doughnut! You can also get a small iced coffee, latte or mocha for a $1.00.

Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf National Coffee Day

Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf – get an iced coffee, flavored iced coffee or iced americano at 50% off.


Dunkin’ Donuts – get a free medium cup hot or Iced Dark Roast coffee at participating locations.


Whole Foods – Allegro coffee is just 25 cents for a 12 oz cup until the end of the month.


Peet’s Coffee & Tea – get a  free small cup of their  signature blend, with a food/bakery purchase.


Sriracha Factory Tour

Sriracha1 A couple of weeks ago my family and I attended Huy Fong Foods Chili Grinding Open House in Irwindale, California. This is the 35th anniversary of the spicy and very popular Sriracha chili sauce.


During the self guided tour you get to see the complete production of how Sriracha Hot Chili Sauce is made. I was amazed at how efficient the operation is. As you tour the facility there are plenty of friendly staff available to answer any questions you have about production or otherwise.


We were able see the complete process from the trucks arriving loaded with red jalapeno peppers, grinding the peppers, how it’s bottled and to final step where the the bottles are packaged, boxed and ready to ship.


On the day of our tour the very inspiring founder of Huy Fong Foods, David Tran, was present greeting and taking pictures with the guests.


This FREE tour comes along some great swag as well (while supplies last). We received a complimentary t-shirt, cups, Sriracha snack sampling that included Sriracha Popcorn, Sriracha Potato Chips, Country Archer Sriracha Jerky, Sriracha caramel, a complimentary 9oz bottle of Sriracha Sauce, and Sriracha soft serve ice cream.

sriracha10I really enjoyed the slight chili taste in the ice cream and since I love Ice cream, it got the best of me so I forgot to take a picture.


To my surprise, there are still a few days open for this year’s Chili Grinding Season tour. If you schedule your tour on 10/10 & 10/17, you’ll also be able to see a special Chinese Lion Dance Performance.

  • When: Tours take place on Saturdays, every hour on the hour from 10:00 am – 3:00 pm.(subject to change)
  • Where: Huy Fong Foods, 800 Azusa Canyon Rd. Irwindale, CA 91706
  • Cost: FREE

You must make reservations. As of the time of the posting there were still dates available on October 10th & October 17th. After your tour if you come up with a recipe using your FREE Sriracha, submit it to


Open Studio

palette station open studioThe Palette Station in Tustin is offering a FREE open studio art time Saturday, October 3, 2105 from 12:00 pm -3:00 pm. This is a free, no-obligation creative session with professional artists.

Drop-in for free art activities for the kids and you’ll get a chance to see first-hand how Palette Station is revolutionizing art enrichment for kids and their families. I love this place, Ray and the staff are amazing, kids feel warm and free to create here.

  • When: Saturday, October 3, 2015 from 12:00 – 3:00 pm
  • Where: Palette Station, 540 E 1st St., Tustin, CA 92780. Located in the Larwin Square Shopping Center. 
  • Cost: FREE

Don’t Miss it!


Your mission today – go to the market stock up on some Moon Pies, dust off your lawn chairs and be ready to witness the Supermoon Lunar Eclipse on tomorrow evening. Don’t miss it, the last occurrence was over 30 years ago and it won’t happen again until 2033.

The lunar perigee can be seen in North and South America, Europe, Africa, parts of West Asia and the eastern Pacific. For those us in the Orange County area, you can start watching the night sky at 7:00 pm.. It will begin around 7:10pm and should be at its peak about 7:47 pm. The show should last about an hour and 12 minutes. The dramatic event will bring the Supermoon to a reddish, copper glow.

The awesome thing about this event is that you will be able to view it with the naked eye. We will be keeping my girls up past their bedtime for this event. If you’re looking a good spot to view this event consider viewing it from your backyard, a park or a local pier. If you want to attend an event here’s a couple to consider:

  • OC Telescope has a viewing event at the store on Sunday night from 6:00 pm till 9:00 pm for the Total Lunar Eclipse. If you name a unique not already named Lunar feature, you can win a Moon Pie, supplies limited to 24, one pie to a contestant, if you’re under 12 pronunciation does not count! OC Telescope is located at 2220 N Main St., Santa Ana, CA.
  • Griffith Observatory is hosting a FREE event. The event will include live piano music provided by Steinway & Sons and The Los Angeles Philharmonic as part of its Immortal Beethoven program. Music performed by Ray Ushikubo of the Colburn School. The event is from 6:30 pm – 9:45 pm. Griffith Observatory is located at 2800 East Observatory Road, Los Angeles, CA

Nasa will provide online viewing starting at 8:00 pm ET or check with your local park and planetarium for viewing parties. If you know of any events please share it by listing it in the comments.

Make sure to share your pictures on social media by using twitter and enter Nasa’s photo contest on their facebook page.


Sunday Funday at Beacon Park


Join in on the first Sunday Family Funday at Beacon Park! Relax on the lawn to the Bohemian Dance Rock tunes of Denmantau. Enjoy live embroidery art. Fill your belly with eats and sweets from The Viking Truck, Tornado Potato, and I Like Pie Bake Shop. Quench your thirst with a refreshing Oktoberfest beer in the beer and wine garden.

Bring your friends, family, dogs and cats to enjoy some fun in the park.

  • When: Sunday, September 27, 2015 from 12:00 p, – 4:00 pm
  • Where: Beacon Park, 501 Benchmark, Irvine, CA 92618
  • Cost: FREE

Peralta Adobe Auto Show

Image courtesy of
Image courtesy of

Come see vintage antique cars of the 1950s and 1960s from the Antique Automobile Club of America at the Peralta Adobe Historic Site.

Docents will be on hand at this free event to guide you through the adobe and explain its history, in particular as the Canyon Cafe from the 1920s to the 1960s. Members of the automobile club will display original cars from this storied period of the adobe’s cafe past, and will explain and answer questions on automotive history.

This event is brought to you in partnership with the Orange County Region of the Antique Automobile Club of America and Tarbell, Realtors.

  • When: Saturday, September 26, 2105 from 10:30 am – 1:30 pm
  • Where: Ramon Peralta Adobe Historic Site, 6398 E. Santa Ana Canyon Road
    Anaheim, CA 92807 (Parking lot on the corner of Santa Ana Canyon Rd. and Fairmont Blvd.)
  • Cost: FREE

Wolf Corp. Robotics

Image from Columbia Memorial Space Center
Image from Columbia Memorial Space Center

Kids of all ages come to a Robotics Demonstration at Columbia Memorial Space Center by Wolf Corp. Robotics team from Walnut, California, one of the Google Lunar XPRIZE Challenge for kids Phase I Winners (2015 Moonbots) & FLL award winners including the 2015 California Cup Champion at Legoland.


Demonstration with lots of hands-on activities:

  • First Lego Leauge (FLL) robotics competition Information
  • Interact with the Meccanoid Robot
  • Activate our competition robot
  • Presentation at 11:30 am
  • Learn how to win a robot set
  • Questions & Answers

The Demonstration takes place on Saturday, September 26, 2015 at Columbia Memorial Space Center from 10:00 am – 1:00 pm., Admission is $5.00 for Adults and Children 4 years and older, Children 3 years and younger: FREE, CMSC & ASTC Members are also FREE.

Columbia Memorial Space Center is located at  12400 Columbia Way, Downey, California 90242 


Weekend Hikes

Image from OC Parks
Image from OC Parks

Here’s this weekends Hikes brought to you by our OC Parks. Make sure to hydrate, its going be a hot one!

Saturday, September 19, 2015

Let’s Go Hiking – Laguna Coast Wilderness Park
Do you want to take a hike with other nature enthusiasts? Enjoy a 3.8-mile, moderate (600-ft. elevation gain) hike through Laurel and Willow Canyons with Laguna Canyon Foundation volunteers. You will experience a variety of plant communities, from Coastal Sage Scrub to Oak Woodland and enjoy a view of the ocean at the top. Minimal interpretation, but questions welcome. The terrain can often be rocky and uneven.

  • Participants should bring water, a hat, a snack, and wear proper hiking shoes.
  • Ages 15 and up.
  • Laguna Coast Wilderness Park, Willow Canyon Staging Area (20101 Laguna Canyon Road, just south of El Toro Road intersection).
  • For questions call: 949-497-8324
  • Parking: $3/vehicle.

Online Registration

Date:  9/19/2015
Time:  8:00 AM – 10:30 AM

Sunday, September 20, 2015

Ranger Led Nature Hike – Ronald W. Caspers Wilderness Park
Join our Park Rangers Sunday mornings for an easy 1-mile hike on the Nature Trail. The trail takes visitors through grassland, oak woodland, riparian and sandy cactus scrub communities. Meet at Old Corral Day Use area. Rain will cancel hike. 

  • Fee: Free
  • Parking: $5 per vehicle
  • Wear comfortable clothing, hiking shoes.
  • Sunscreen, water and insect repellent are recommended.
  • Subject to cancelation without notice

For additional information, please call the park at (949) 923-2210.

Date: 9/20/2015
Time: 8:00 AM – 9:00 AM
Birding Walk – Laguna Coast Wilderness Park

Learn, practice or just enjoy spotting summer and year-round resident birds with Laguna Canyon Foundation volunteer naturalists on this 1.5-mile hike over primarily flat, but uneven terrain through one of the most diverse plant communities in the United States. No experience necessary!

  • For ages 12 and up (minors must be accompanied by an adult).
  • Wear hiking or walking shoes and bring your binoculars (Limited binoculars available on loan).
  • Laguna Coast Wilderness Park, Little Sycamore Canyon Staging Area/Nix Nature Center (west side of Laguna Canyon Rd/SR-133, approximately 3.5 miles south of I-5/405).
  • For questions call: 949-497-8324
  • Parking: $3/vehicle.

Online Registration

Date: 9/20/2015
Time: 8:00 AM – 11:00 AM
Morning Walk around the Lake – Laguna Niguel Regional Park

Come enjoy a wonderful morning walk around the lake and learn about the native plants and critters in the park. This is an easy 2.5-mile walk (both paved and dirt trail) with no elevation gain. Led by Laguna Canyon Foundation Volunteer Naturalists. Dogs on leashes welcome.

  • Laguna Niguel Regional Park, 28241 La Paz Road, Laguna Niguel. Meet at the Shelter 3 parking lot.
  • For questions, call (949) 497-8324 Mon-Fri or (949) 923-2240 Sat/Sun
  • Parking: $5 per vehicle
  • Ages 8 and up
  • Reservations Required Online (link below)

Online Reservations Link

Date: 9/20/2015
Time: 9:00 AM – 11:00 AM



Hot Wheels are Rolling into Town

Image courtesy of
Image courtesy of

As a girl I had a bigger Hot Wheels® collection then my boy cousins. I would save my money and visit my local toy shop to add to my collection. I remember sitting and staring at the collection in the glass case at “Toy Town”.  If I could, it would do the same today, only on a larger scale. This upcoming exhibit at Discovery Cube Orange County gives me, I mean…my girls a chance to play.

Hot Wheels: Race to Win comes rolling into Discovery Cube town September 19, 2015 – January 3, 2016. This new family exhibit will get you revved up with immersive activities for three generations of Hot Wheels® fans. There’s something for mom, dad, grandparents, and children! Visit this exhibit to become part of a race team working together to build and test the fastest speed machines on the planet! Here’s a peak at what you’ll see:

  • Take a behind-the-scenes look at the thrilling world of racing, including the scientific process for designing fast cars
  • Compete in the Pit Stop Challenge, by racing against the clock to change tires and refuel your race car
  • Test theories regarding the science of racing by experimenting with a six lane downhill speed track, booster power track, adjustable angles track, and timing track
  • See and learn about real race car parts, authentic artifacts, and captivating memorabilia

Discovery Cube is located at 2500 N Main St, Santa Ana, CA 92705

Click here for additional information on admission and hours or click here for a coupon.

HOT WHEELS and associated trademarks and trade dress are owned by, and used under license from, Mattel. ©2015 Mattel. All Rights Reserved.


Happy 40th Anniversary Carbon Canyon!

Image from
Image from

Come celebrate the 40th anniversary of Carbon Canyon Regional Park and the planting of the Redwood Grove.

This free, family-friendly event offers something for everyone: crafts for kids, a balloon artist and a face painter. Inside the Outdoors will also be giving a live animal presentation. Ranger-led hikes to the Redwood Grove will be offered at 8 a.m., 9 a.m., 10 a.m. and 11 a.m.

Participate in the hike and get a prize! Participants include: California State Parks, California Department of Fish & Wildlife, Olinda Museum, Hills for Everyone and Friends of Harbors, Beaches and Parks. A historian will also be on site to give a brief history of Carbon Canyon.

  • When: Saturday, September 26, 2015 from 8:00 am – 12:00 pm
  • Where: Carbon Canyon Regional Park, 4442 Carbon Canyon Road Brea, CA 92823
  • Cost: FREE

Please call to register: (714) 973-3160 or email

Visit for more information.


Spiders of Orange County

SpidersOfOrange CountyPlease join the spider-man Jim Ortiz at Laguna Niguel Regional Park on Saturday, September 26, 2015, as we learn about the fascinating world of spiders. Jim will lead a 45-minute PowerPoint presentation.

Jim has researched spiders for 46 years. He has written and contributed to several books about spiders including Urban Wild and Araneomorph Spiders of Joshua Tree National Park. He is currently gathering material on spiders in the Mediterranean Sea Islands and Eastern Islands of the West Indies.

Meet at the amphitheater. Come early to look at display items.

  • When: Saturday, September 26, 2105 from 6:00 pm – 7:30 pm
  • Where: Laguna Niguel Regional Park, 28241 La Paz Rd, Laguna Niguel, CA 92677
  • Cost: Event is FREE, Parking is $5 per vehicle.

Water Conservation Expo


The City of Tustin’s first water conservation expo,”Let’s Get Smart About Water – Every Drop Counts” will take place on Saturday September 19, 2105. This family friendly community event is free to the public and will take place from 10:00 am – 2:00 pm at Peppertree Park.

The Expo will feature tented exhibits from landscape, turf, irrigation, and green technology companies. Workshops and demonstrations will also be offered on water wise and heat tolerant plants for your yard, water saving tips, rebate programs, lawn alternatives and water saving irrigation systems.

A special children’s area will include bounce houses, face painting, kids’ crafts, water conservation games and a coloring contest. A DJ and local entertainment will perform throughout the day to delight the entire family.

Various food trucks will be on hand for a delicious lunch, snacks or a picnic on the grass and prize drawings will take place each hour.

An Art Contest is open to children & teens from k-12 grades. Water is the theme of the contest and must appear on the work in some capacity. Prizes will be awarded and winners will be asked to attend and be recognized at a City Council meeting.

Click on the image below for a PDF format of the entry form.

Lets Get Smart About Water Art Contest 9-01-15-page-001 (1)

Peppertree Park is located at 230 W. First Street, Tustin, CA 92780



Hikes & Bikes

Image from
Image from

Yes, it’s been a while since I posted any hikes & bikes posts but I like hiking and I love cycling so I’ve decided to start them up again. It’s not too late to get our there this morning. Throw the bike on the carrier  or put your hiking shoes on and get out there!

Beginning Mountain Bike Ride  – Laguna Coast Wilderness Park
Learn mountain biking basics and trail etiquette on this 6.8-mile ride over steep and uneven terrain (800-ft. elevation gain) while enjoying canyon views. Please come prepared with a bike suitable for off-pavement riding, sturdy shoes, helmet, gloves, water and snack. Led by Laguna Canyon Foundation volunteer mountain bike trail assistants.

  • Laguna Coast Wilderness Park, Ridge Park Staging Area (Newport Coast Drive to Ridge Park Rd. east to end; meet at the gate.)
  • For questions call: 949-497-8324
  • Parking: Free.

Online Registration

Date:  9/12/2015
Time:  8:30 AM – 10:30 AM
Car Wreck Fitness Hike – Aliso & Wood Canyons Park
Hike down Aliso Canyon into the heart of the park before challenging yourself on the steep Mathis Canyon Trail then down Car Wreck Trail. Experienced hikers only.

  • Aliso & Wood Canyons Wilderness Park, Ranger Headquarters, 28373 Alicia Pkwy (from southbound Aliso Creek Rd, turn right on Alicia Parkway, first right on Awma Road, then left into parking lot).
  • For questions, call (949) 497-8324 Mon-Fri or (949) 923-2200 Sat/Sun
  • Parking: $3/vehicle
  • For ages 15 and up who are capable of an 7-mile, 800-ft. elevation gain hike on very steep and rocky terrain. Be prepared for hot weather, with at least two liters of water, snack, proper hiking shoes, sunscreen, a hat and sunglasses.
  • Reservations Required Online (link below)

Online Reservations Link

Date:  9/12/2015
Time:  8:30 AM – 10:30 AM