Monday, July 28, 2014

Coming Up: Community Day at Candlestick Park - Free

Join the Rec and Park's Free Community Day at Candlestick Park, part of their "Last Summer at the 'Stick" series of farewell events supporting youth sports. This family-friendly event features carnival rides, food trucks, field activities, and stadium tours. Event tickets are available at

FYI - no backpacks allowed, and no tailgating.

When: Sunday, August 3 from 11-3
Tickets: get 4 free tickets here
Cost: free, but you need tickets to enter

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Review: GemShare Site to Share Referrals/Recommendations - Free!

Whether you’re new to a Bay Area community (or anywhere, for that matter) or you’ve been living here awhile, sometimes it’s tough to find the referrals you need. You might need a new hairdresser, roofer, camp, orthodontist, pediatrician, massage therapist, tutor, lawyer, restaurant party location etc.

Two San Francisco moms started GemShare, which I see as a combination of Angie’s List, Yelp and your favorite Facebook (or email) group that shares referrals. Angie’s List costs money and you don’t know the people giving referrals. With Yelp you also don’t know the referrers and you don’t know if the reviews are legitimate. And with your Facebook group or email, you often know the people, but it’s hard to sort and store the referrals for when you need them. GemShare is free and you can see who wrote each review – the site strongly encourages members to use their full name and picture (and from what I've seen, most people comply). Each piece of advice/referral is a “gem,” hence the name.

GemShare contacted us for a sponsored review of their site and to start a Frisco Kids group – which we thought was an excellent community-building thing to do. Please join us on GemShare in the Frisco Kids group! I’ll tell you how here, and I’ll explain more about our review of GemShare below.

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Coming Up: Pedalfest in Oakland - Free

This weekend, pump up the bike tires and head to Pedalfest at Jack London Square. They have a whole festival devoted to the bicycle. They expect more than 20,000 bike lovers, with activities including bicycle stunts, pedal-powered food, art, a bicycle rodeo and live music. Kids can participate in a bike parade and a bike rodeo. Check out the vintage bikes while you're there.

Parents can drink up some New Belgium Brewing Company beers - all proceeds support the Bike East Bay advocacy work. If you take the ferry there with your bike, you can get a free ferry ride on San Francisco Bay Ferry.

When: Saturday, July 26 from 11-7
Where: Jack London Square (Broadway and Embarcadero) in Oakland
Cost: Free

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Coming Up: Free Summer Series for Kids - Roxie Theater

2Roxie Graphics-kids

Roxie Theater in San Francisco (3117 16th Street) is offering two free films this summer for kids 12 and under ($7.50 for adults). They selected films to appeal to kids and adults - and not the typical Hollywood films either. These are more artsy. They want to expose kids and adults to more independent and foreign films. They'll be showing:

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JULY. 27th (Sunday 2 pm

Lupin the 3rd “The CASTLE of CAGLIOSTRO”

Co-written & directed by Hayao Miyazaki Hayao Miyazaki’s directorial debut film. While driving through the streets of Europe, Lupin and Jigen, a sharpshooter, find a young woman named Clarise in a bridal gownchased by villains. A spectacular car chase ensues in order to save this damsel in distress.
Aug. 24th (SUN) 2:00pm

Astro Boy

Directed & written by Osamu Tezuka Osamu Tezuka, God of Manga, Father of Anime. He gave much inspiration to Hayao Miyazaki. A science fiction series set in a futuristic world where robots co-exist with humans. Astro is a powerful robot created by the head of the Ministry of Science to replace his son, who died in a car accident. Astro is shown fighting crime, evil, and injustice. Most of his enemies were robot-hating humans, robots gone berserk, or alien invaders. Almost every story included a battle involving Astro and other robots.

Coming Up: Art Pantry Pop-Up Sale

If you live in Marin (or will be there next weekend), check out the the Art Pantry warehouse clearance sale at their 2-day pop-up shop. This mom-owned store will be selling off their entire inventory of kids art supplies and craft-related gifts at up to 50% off retail prices, including items you can use for school or for birthday gifts.

Kids are welcome, as they'll have a crafts table and refreshments both days.

When: July 26-27, 10-5
Where: 27 Miller Avenue, Mill Valley

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Free trial class at Play LAB at Seesaw

Looking to try Play LAB at Seesaw? Get a free trial class in July. They offer three different classes.

Play LAB prosocial is a play group designed for kids ages 2.5 - 3.5 and parent or caregiver. Kids learn and practice peer interaction, socialization and friendship building skills. It's helpful for families interested in learning more about how to build on their child's strengths and social-emotional well-being. They have free play, Q + A, and discuss topics like: joining in play, empathy, frustration tolerance, shyness, exceptional learners and self-regulation. The class is led by a child psychologist. It meets Wednesdays 11-noon.

Play LAB speech is a play group designed for kids ages 1 - 4. Activities encourage vocabulary, language comprehension, and early thinking skills. You can ask their specialist questions about your child's communication, signs, gestures, bilingualism, and ways to boost language skills. This class is led by a speech language pathologist. It meets Wednesdays 10 - 11 am in July.

Play LAB OT is a play group designed for kids ages 1 - 4. Fun activities encouraging sensory integration and motor planning skills. This class is led by an occupational therapist, and meets Friday July 25 from 10 - 11 am.

To learn more, visit To register, email -- please include child's name, DOB, parent name -- and mention WORKS FOR ME, which is an email group I'm part of where I learned about this.

Friday, July 18, 2014

Link love

It's been awhile since I've done a link love post, but I've been collecting links for awhile now, so here goes!

We're trying this S'mores Dip this weekend, when my daughter has a back-yard campout. Basically it's s'mores made in the oven and it looks amazing!

Did you see our Pop Secret popcorn Perfect Pop app post yesterday? You must read it - it's funny.

Going camping this summer? Here are 60 camping tips for beginners from RWeThereYetMom?

More travel - here are some packing tips for packing light and going carry-on if taking a plane this summer, from

Love this story about a teen trying to make lingerie more appropriate for girls.

Another teens story - watch this video about conjoined twins and what their life is like.

Celebrating a milestone birthday? I love what Cam Bowman from Growing Up Goofy is doing to celebrate her 40th. She's raising $4,000 for the Exodus Road, which fights against sex slavery.

Looking for a fun science project to do with the kids this summer? Make dry ice bubbles - that look like works of art.

A couple books to recommend:
For those taking young kids on airplanes, check out Monsters Don't Ride on Airplanes - an e-book (only $2.99) by Hilarye Fuller. It teaches kids to have manner on the airplane, and it's educational but also very cute.

The talented Meagan Francis launched her e-book recently, called Beyond Baby: A Week-By-Week Guide To Creating A Life You Love When Your Kids Aren't So Little. This is for moms with kids beyond the baby/toddler years who are ready for the next phase in their own life.