Hometown online fashion favorites at Tobi.com

Friday, April 30, 2010

Coming up: May Fete parade in Palo Alto

Tomorrow is Palo Alto's 88th annual May Fete. The local event features a parde (your kid can even march in it), with floats and music in downtown Palo Alto. After, there's a fair with games, music and food.

The parade starts at 10 a.m., but if your kid wants to march (categories include kids with pets, kids in costume, and kids on wheels), show up at 9:30 at the corner of Emerson and University Ave.

The fair is at Addison Elementary School (650 Addison Ave) and it starts at 1:00 p.m.

For more info on the May Fete, click here.

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Coming Up: Oakland Museum Opening Weekend Festival

The newly renovated Oakland Museum reopens Saturday, May 1 as part of a "31 hour" festival. The fun starts at 11 a.m. on May 1st, in front of the Oak Street entrance, with a Native American Ohlone blessing, a marching band, aerial dance by Project Bandaloop and more. The party continues until 6 p.m. Sunday, May 2nd.

Family-focused events are on Sunday, with dancing, drumming, juggling, the Oakland Interfaith Gospel Choir, and more. 


Other events: "Only in California" Saturday afternoon activities highlight the innovative and creative spirit of California.


Saturday evening and overnight activities are focused more for adults, with dancing, food, a no-host bar, flashlight tours, and conversations on unique California topics---merging into early morning yoga.

For more info, check out the Oakland Museum.

Day Trips: Three Top Bay Area Amusement Parks


Warm summer weather and vacations spells out amusement part rides and cotton candy. While San Francisco isn’t known for theme parks (the same way a certain Southern California city certainly is), you can get your fill by renting a car for the day and heading to the coast. The roller coasters that is. Here are three Bay Area amusement parks to consider.


Santa Cruz Boardwalk (Santa Cruz, CA): Set on the Pacific Ocean, this beach boardwalk has free concerts plus rides. Come for a few hours - come for the whole day. Don't miss the historic 1911 Looff carousel — It has one of the few “brass ring” machines left in the country. You can lean over from your wooden carousel horse and grab a ring, then toss it into a clown’s mouth a few seconds later. The Boardwalk has rides for all ages, whether you have toddlers or high schoolers.

Gilroy Gardens (Gilroy, CA): In the garlic capital of the world, this amusement park is best for the younger set and for parents who might find the horticultural exhibits fascinating. I do. With 40 rides plus water features, the kids will end up happy and tired. They’ll even love the 19 “Circus Trees,” (see exampleon the right) with branches and trunks grafted and shaped in surprising ways. In addition to a train and monorail, the park also has a large greenhouse with a Monarch butterfly garden. Plus deep fried zucchini. Yummy!

Six Flags Discovery Kingdom (Vallejo, CA): Head north to Vallejo, and you can ride a coaster that will make you puke, swim with dolphins, and more. Six Flags Discovery Kingdom has a little something for everyone, with wild animals like a Bengal tiger, an Asian elephant, and a killer whale. Hopefully this one won't kill a trainer, as it did at a Florida park. As for the rides, they range from go-karts to a Tony Hawk spinning coaster.




Basket Tree photo by Donna62
Santa Cruz Boardwalk photo by Tibchris

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Coming Up: Sleepovers at the California Academy of Sciences

This sounds like fun! It's Night at the Museum - but without all the scary stuff.

Spend the night at the California Academy of Sciences - in the Penguins and Pajamas Academy. Here's what they say about the event:

"Doors will open at 6:30 pm, when sleepover guests are invited to come in and explore the Academy after it’s closed to the public. Participants can take in the evening songs of the rainforest birds, sing “twinkle twinkle” to a sea star at the Discovery Tidepool, and watch the fish cruise under the moonlight in the Philippine Coral Reef tank. Then, guests can catch a special penguin talk, and become stargazing gurus during an after-hours planetarium show.


Before bedtime, sleepover guests can grab a snack of cookies and milk and settle in for story time, featuring “Pierre the Penguin,” the true story of the Academy’s famous wetsuit-wearing penguin. When the lights go out, participants can unroll their sleeping bags in African Hall, next to the swaying kelp of the California Coast tank, or even at the Swamp window, face-to-face with Claude, the albino alligator. In the morning, it’s time to rise and shine, then head over to the Academy CafĂ© for breakfast before the sleepover event ends at 8:30 am."

The package includes parking at the music concourse garage, next day admission to the academy, breakfast, snacks and a special commemorative gift.

What: “Penguins and Pajamas” sleepover program

Who: Open to children ages 6 and over; an adult chaperone must accompany every group of up to five children.
Where: California Academy of Sciences, 55 Music Concourse Drive, San Francisco, 94118
When: 6:30pm – 8:30am starting on Friday, June 18, July 16, and August 13
Tickets: $119 ($99 for Academy members), tickets available starting May 1, 2010 at http://www.calacademy.org/.

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Coming Up: Opening of Rob Hill Campground in Presidio - Event Saturday

I never realized you could camp in the Presidio. Well, you can! This Saturday, the Rob Hill Campground reopens in the Presidio, and there's a fun (and free) opening celebration.

They'll have camping skills demonstrations, crafts, games, ranger talks, storytelling, musical entertainment, campfire with s'mores, chili and hot dogs.

They're encouraging people to hike or bike there (bike valet provided by the San Francisco Bicycle Coalition), Or park at the Main Post in the parking lot (Anza & Sheridan) and take the PresidiGo Shuttle* to Rob Hill (there is no auto parking at Rob Hill for the event). Shuttles will run continuously - one way trip is about 15 minutes.


When: Saturday, May 1, 2010 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
10 am - Ribbon Cutting Celebration
10:30 am–2 pm - Campground Open House

What: Rob Hill Campground Opening
RSVP: requested by April 28th, with your name and number of adults/kids. RSVP to specialevents@parksconservancy.org or (415) 561-3030 x2241

More info: Rob Hill Campground Park Conservancy\

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Coming Up: Home Depot Kids' Workshop - Picket Fence Planter


Home Depot offers some fun workshops for kids to make their own projects. Coming up? A picket fence planter.


When: Saturday, May 1, 9 a.m. to noon

Age: kids 5-12

Where: Home Depot

Cost: Free

RSVP: none

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Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Coming Up: Family Sundays at SFMOMA

Coming up at SFMOMA - free Sunday family tours and hands-on activities at SFMOMA. Kids 12 and under get in free (adults don't). Family tour (aimed at ages 4-11) starts at 1:00, with special programs starting at 2:00. Generally, the day (which runs from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.) includes the tour, hands-on art creation and other programming like movies, book readings and more. You need to RSVP since space is limited.

Here's what's coming up:

May 2 - The Joy of JunkAccording to SFMOMA: "Any artist knows that someone's junk is another's treasure. Collect all you can. Spiff it up. Anything can be art, according to junk connoisseur Robert Rauschenberg."

June 6 & 20 - Focus on BLUR
According to SFMOMA: "What is it? It's playing with focus and light. It's using photography tricks to alter perception. It's the artist's visual truth. That's what. Picture Andy Warhol, Gerhard Richter, and Sigmar Polke, for a start."

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Coming Up: Madagascar 2 movie free - at Serramonte Center

This Friday, April 30th, see Madagascar 2 for free at Serramonte Center in Daly City. The movie starts at 5:30 in the Macy's wing.

Deal of the Day: Children's Fairyland membership for $40

I've posted before about Children's Fairyland in Oakland. It's a great place to visit with toddlers and perschoolers. Imagine an old-fashioned kiddie-land, and you've pretty much described Children's Fairyland. They have kiddie rides, story time, puppet shows and special events. It's next to Lake Merritt.

The Savvy Source has a deal good for the next two to three days - get an annual membership for $40 (actual value is $87, and park admission is normally $7/person over age 1). With that, you'll get unlimited admission, rides and attractions for two adults and three kids. Children's Fairyland has some fun events, including family sleepovers, summer camps and they offer birthday party facilities. I went to a birthday party there once - the kids had a great time.

Children's Fairyland says it's great for kids under age 8. That higher end of the age range might be pushing it for some families, but the rids include a mini ferris wheel, train, two carousels and themed play areas.

Get the deal here through mid-day Thursday.

Small print: the deal is only good for new members and is not transferrable. You must redeem the coupon for membership within 60 days. All the details are here.

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Monday, April 26, 2010

Kid-Friendly Dining in Downtown San Francisco's Westfield Shopping Centre


A mall food court doesn’t usually inspire the taste buds. Soggy Chinese food, tasteless pizza, and mediocre ice cream from a machine? No thanks. If you’re shopping at Westfield San Francisco Centre (865 Market Street), near Union Square’s Hotel Nikko or Kensigton Park Hotel, try out some local fast food that’s kid-friendly and gourmet to boot.


Out the Door: This Vietnamese restaurant is brought to you by famed chef Charles Phan of the Slanted Door. Sit down or get take-out — including wine and beer — and enjoy shaking beef or chicken claypot with ginger and cilantro.

San Francisco Soup Company: Started by a San Francisco mom (and still family-owned), this soup shop makes its soups from scratch. Plus, the company composts and uses biodegradable and recyclable packaging, so you can eat guilt-free.

Beard Papa: For dessert, try one of these famous cream puffs (see the lucscious photo above). The Japanese style desserts are oozing with creamy chocolate or vanilla custard — filled on the spot just for you.

Beard Papa photo by aspherical elements
San Francisco Soup Company photo by titanium22


Coming Up: Escape from Alcatraz Triathlon




Okay, I'm not expecting you to actually particpate in the Escape from Alcatraz Triathlon (though I'm sure there are a few parents out there who do). But you can take the kids to see the excitement - and for a free Fitness Festival & Expo that weekend too.

You'll see 2,000 triatheletes swim 1.5 miles from Alcatraz to the shore, an 18 mile bike race and an 8 mile run through the Golden Gate Recreation Area.

The Fitness Festival & Expo takes place on Marina Green, Saturday May 1 and Sunday May 2, 2010, from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m.

The race itself starts at 8 a.m. on May 2nd with the swim portion. You'll want to be at Marina Green - it's where the athletes start and end the swim, the staging area for the other portions, and the finish line.

This is the triathlon's 30th anniversary.

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Sunday, April 25, 2010

Coming Up: Folksy Family Day at MOCFA

Hey families! Check out the Folksy Family Day at the Museum of Craft & Folk Art. You'll start with a tour of the MOCFA at 1:00, followed by a short walk to the Museum of the African Diaspora (MoAD) for some hands-on fun, West African style. You'll make your own bogolanfini (mudcloth).

Where: Museum of Craft & Folk Art (Mission between 3rd/4th)
When: May 1st at 1:00 p.m.
RSVP: (415) 227-4888 x 10
Cost: $3 (for materials)

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Coming Up: 31 Cent Scoop Night at Baskin Robbins

It's that time of year again - 31 cents for a scoop of Baskin Robbins ice cream!  Get in line on Wednesday, April 28th, from 5-10 p.m. Find a location here.

Your donations to purchase the ice cream benefits the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation.

Friday, April 23, 2010

Coming Up; Photo Workshop on Taking Pictures of Your Kids

If you're not happy with your photography skills, or want to brush up on taking better photos of your kids,there's a class coming up just for that. According to the organizer you'll learn simple tips to mprove your photos. The instructor prefers you bring a digital SLR. You'll learn:

-- what to wear for photos
-- Going from Snapshot to Portrait: What makes a good photograph?
* Rule of Thirds
* Getting Closer
--Information on camera settings
* "What...you mean there are other settings besides auto???"
* Why flash is not your friend
-- "Can you make me 10 lbs thinner?": Intro to post-processing with Picasa
-- Q&A

A note: I haven't taken this class, and I don't know the instructor. I heard about it through a Mom's list I'm on and it sounded good so I posted.

What: Photography 101: How to take better photos of your kids

When: Sunday, April 25th from 1-3 pm OR Sunday, May 2nd from 2-4 pm
Cost: $75
Location: Pac Heights (location will be emailed to you)
Bring: DSLR (note: we will focus on Canons, but all info is applicable to Nikons or any other DSLR)
RSVP:  Email brooke@brookebryand.com

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Coming Up: Free Puffy Clay Event at Michael's

Nothing says "fun" like puffy clay! Come to Michael's this Satuday for a free puffy clay event. It's geared toward making moms like (some of) us a gift of a puffy clay magnet that you can treasure...for a little while. At least until it falls off the fridge and "gets lost." I know, I'm so sentimental!

The event is at Michael's Arts & Crafts, on Saturday April 24th from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Just show up. Find a Michael's store here (look for the zip code box on the bottom of the page).

Coming Up: the Wiz

Well, it's not Michael Jackson and Diana Ross, but it is some cute and talented kids! Take yours to see the musical The Wiz, at Bayside Performing Arts Center. It's produced by Pied Piper Players - they do a great job and kids love seeing other kids performing.

What: The Wiz
Where: Bayside Performing Arts Center, 2025 Kehoe Ave, San Mateo
When: April 23-May 2 (weekends)
Tickets: 650-992-7433 or click here
Cost: $12-16

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

The Best iPhone Apps for Kids

My friend Jamie at Travel Savvy Mom, and travel writer Jenny Leo, who blogs for the LA Times Travel section (such a sweet gig), launched a new website: iPhone Apps for Kids. As I told Jamie when the blog first hit the internet, I'd read it a lot more if I actually had an iPhone. After all, we parents need to know which apps will help entertain (and educate) our kids, while making our lives easier!

But, I don't like to feel jealous, and reading about all these cool apps to use on the iPhone would just bring out that little green monster inside of me. Okay, I could actually go and purchase and iPhone. And cancel the remaining 1.25 years on my Verizon contract and pay a hefty cancellation fee. I could stop using my stupid-phone, the one whose apps include "dialing" and "texting by pushing the number buttons numerous times until the right letter appears." And my favorite app: "taking a picture that I'll never figure out how to send or upload."

But I'd rather skip straight to the iPad.

So in return for telling y'all about iPhone Apps for Kids, I get to enter their mom blogger contest to win an iPad. If I win, I can be part of the international tech conversation and thank Jamie and Jen even more effusively. Even send them virtual hugs. Especially since I didn't win the cool underwater camera Travel Savvy Mom gave away some time back.

To win, they actually want me to say, "I’m participating in a contest at Best Kids Apps, a blog about iPhone apps for kids, for a chance to win an iPad." So there. I said it. If you're a mom blogger, you can enter too. If you're not, you can still check out their cool website. You'll love all the graphics - my son wouldn't let me flip to another web page while cuddling in bed this morning. He kept asking me about all the pictures and apps. You see, his grandparents have iPhones so he actually knows about some of these apps.

Focus Group for pregnant women

I realize this is last minute, but if you're pregnant, in your 2nd or 3rd trimester, you might be eligible to participate in a focus group in downtown San Francisco this Friday, April 23rd. They're looking for pregnant women in their 2nd or 3rd trimester to review some marketing communications.

In return you'll get a $150 American Express Gift Card for attending the 1.5 hour session and doing about 30 minutes of reviewing provided materials prior to the session.

If you're interested (and pregnant), click here to fill out the preliminary survey. If the link doesn't work, then the session is probably filled, since it was working when this posted.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Free book download: Courageous Parents, Confident Kids


Now through April 21st, you can download the new book Courageous Parents, Confident Kids: Letting Go so You Both Can Grow. It's a complilation from 14 writers, and it's encouraging and provides strategies to become your own parenting expert.

The book features also features a chapter on Kidpower - a workshop I took years ago.

Download the book for free here.

Free Bowling all Summer

It's time to sign up for free summer bowling! Sign up at Kids Bowl Free, and your kids can bowl two games a day (per kid - including I think, free shoe rental) for the summer. If you think you'll be bowling as well, purchase the family pass starting at $24.95 and you'll get two games per adult per day (up to 4 adults) as well.

The Bay Area locations include Daly City, San Mateo and South San Francisco.

We did this last summer. You sign up for one bowling alley only. After signing up, you'll get an email a week with your bowling coupons (or you can log in and print them). That's it!

Monday, April 19, 2010

Pre-Mother's Day event - Diaper Donation through Help a Mother Out

Do something different and celebrate Mother's Day a week early. By helping out other Bay Area moms.

Help a Mother Out is a grass-roots organization that collects diapers and diapering supplies for homeless families, and those in the poverty level. Diapers aren't covered under federal/state safety net programs and one mom started this organization to help others with this need. This May 2nd, Help a Mother Out celebrates its one year anniversary with a fundraising party at San Francisco's Peekadoodle Kids Club.

The event features crafts, games, music, snacks and prizes. If you can't attend, there are other ways to help. This Help a Mother Out page lists options, including conducting your own diaper drive, dontating diapers online, dropping off diapers (even open packages) at SadieDey's Cafe in Oakland, or donating diapers or items for a silent auction fundraiser at Junior Gym in San Mateo (or you can attend the May 7th event).

What: Help a Mother Out Peekadoodle party.
When: May 2nd from 3-6 p.m.
Cost: $35 donation (which lets in family of max 2 adults and 3 kids.
Tickets: Get them at Help a Mom Out.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Coming Up: Kids World Events at Serramonte Center

Come to Serramonte Center for "KidsWorld," a free, fun and educational after school monthly program.

According to Serramonte, "KidsWorld events include festive, interactive performances with singing, dancing, games, crafts and fun learning opportunities. Each event teaches students a variety of topics including music, culture, art and even etiquette. The after school program also provides a place for kids to come and socialize in a fun, safe and educational environment. Each monthly event is themed and filled with arts and crafts activities, hands-on fun, festive music and more."


Here's the schedule:
Tuesday, April 20, at 5:30 p.m. – Earth Day Celebration with World of Plants

Tuesday, May 18, at 5:30 p.m. – World of Dinosaurs

Tuesday, June 15, at 5:30 p.m. – Filipino Festival

Membership is free, and is good for discounts throughout the shopping center, entry into free monthly events and more.

The event is at the Serramonte Center, between the Elephant Bar and Starbucks (formerly the Mervyn's wing)

Coming Up: kids' stuff swap in Emeryville

I recently posted about a swap event in San Rafael. The date for that one changed but there's one coming up in Emeryville on April 22nd. Here's info on that.

A nonprofit organization, peace. love. swap. is hosting a kids' swap. No, don't swap your kids. Swap their stuff. Clothes, High chairs. Strollers. Come and bring your stuff. It's like a giant garage sale where everything is free! Bring/get stuff for ages 0-14, plus maternity clothes.


Anything not taken will be donated to charity afterwards.

What: peace. love. swap
Where: Head Over Heels Gymnastics (4701 Doyle St, Bldg F (at 47th St) Emeryville
Date: Thursday, April 22 --- EARTH DAY!!
Time: Drop off items between 12:00pm - 1:00pm ~ Swap starts at 1:30pm until 3:00pm
Cost: $5 admission* & stuff to swap** and $5 for swappers to play with their kids in open gym. (regular price for open gym is $10)

Sign up to volunteer and you can scout out the items before everyone else. And you can choose 5 items before everyone else comes in. To volunteer, you need to registerwith the organizer before that date. Email megfranz@peaceloveswap.com

If you don't have items to swap, you can still come and get stuff - you come 45 minutes after it starts

Coming Up: Earth Day Storytime with Todd Parr


I love Todd Parr's books. His drawings are cute and happy. He's kind of cute too!

Todd Parr is doing an Earth Day story time at the Menlo Park library (800 Alma Street). It's Thursday, April 22 at 11:15 a.m. The book is The Earth Book (how appropriate!) and it's on the subject of environmental protection and conservation. It shows how we can work together to make the Earth feel good - from planting a tree and using both sides of the paper, to saving energy and reusing old things in new ways.

You don't have to buy the book, but if you do (you know you want it) you can get it at Keplers.

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Coming Up: Princess and the Frog at Daly city

This Friday, April 23rd, see the Princess and the Frog for free at Serramonte Center in Daly City. The movie starts at 5:30 in the Macy's wing.

Wear a princess or prince outfit and you might win a Disney Store gift card.

Next Friday, April 30th, catch another free flick - Madagascar 2 - same time, same place.

Friday, April 16, 2010

Coming Up: Cherry Festival in SF Japantown


Celebrate the 43rd annual Cherry Blossom Festival this weekend, April 17-18th, in San Francisco's Japantown. This is the second largest U.S. festival of its type outside of Washington D.C. At the festival, you'll hear Taiko drums, watch martial artists, sample yummy food at the food bazaar, watch bonzai and flower arranging demonstrations, listen to traditional music, and view a 2-hour parade (Sunday afternoon). For the parade route and more info, check out the official Japantown Cherry Blossom Festival website.

Photo by Deborah Abrams Kaplan - all rights reserved

Three Awesome San Francisco Playgrounds Near the Tourist Sights

Sometimes a kid just has to be a kid. After visiting San Francisco’s indoor museums and cultural attractions, head to the playground - preferably one near the attractions. Here are three awesome play areas near the tourist sights.


Alamo Square Playground (Steiner and Grove Streets): After checking out San Francisco’s famed Painted Ladies (the elaborately detailed and colorful Victorian houses), see a kid-size version at this Alamo Square play area. The architectural roofing elements carry over, with a wooden cupola and three different colored gables in a row. The kids will love the swings with a view, and the view? Well, just check out the photo above.


Golden Gate Park Children’s Playground (a.k.a. Koret Children’s Quarter) (Bowling Green Drive near MLK Jr Drive and Kezar): After visiting the California Academy of Science, let the kids run off their energy at this recently-renovated park staple. Good for kids large and small, it boasts a long, wavy cement slide (bring cardboard), a large sand area, a sculptural "surfing wave" to climb on, tons of grass, multiple play structures, and a web-like climbing formation.


Chinese Playground (Sacramento Street, between Kearny and Grant): Take a break from the knick-knack shops and the dim sum restaurants and head to this urban playground. The pagoda-roofed play structure makes you realize you’re not in Kansas anymore – you’re in Chinatown. Best for the younger set, this urban play area features a large sandbox, various slides and a wobbly wooden bridge.

Golden Gate Park photo by Freya.Gefn
Alamo Square photo by Jill Claridy


Thursday, April 15, 2010

Coming Up: kids' stuff swap in San Rafael

DATE CHANGE!!!!
A nonprofit organization, peace. love. swap. is hosting a kids' swap. No, don't swap your kids. Swap their stuff. Clothes, High chairs. Strollers. Come and bring your stuff. It's like a giant garage sale where everything is free! Bring/get stuff for ages 0-14, plus maternity clothes.

Anything not taken will be donated to charity afterwards.

What: peace. love. swap
Where: Gymworld. 3040 Kerner Blvd, San Rafael, CA
When: June 13, 2010. Drop off between 9:30 and 10:30 a.m. The swap is 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
Cost: $5 (free for volunteers)

Sign up to volunteer and you can scout out the items before everyone else. And you can choose 5 items before everyone else comes in. To volunteer, you need to registerwith the organizer before that date. Email megfranz@peaceloveswap.com

If you don't have items to swap, you can still come and get stuff - you come 45 minutes after it starts (come at 11:45 a.m.)

Coming Up: Earth Stroll at Crissy Field - Free

This Saturday, head to Crissy Field in San Francisco for the Earth Stroll. In addition to meeting wild animals (brought in from an organization, not just rabid raccoons), you can make tortillas, listen to music by James K, do family yoga, play an edible geology game, do a shorebird marsh game plus other activities. And you can meet Chipper, star of the Chipper series of books.

The event is free, but if you buy a special activities "passport," you also get a copy of the new Chipper book Let's Stroll Crissy Field (normal retail: $10.95). We have a number of Chipper products at our home, including our favorite Into the Great Outdoors Chipper activity set (the video and music are especially great), so this book should be good too - especially since it's all about San Francisco and ecology!

What: Earth Stroll 2010
When: Saturday, April 17th from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Where: Crissy Field, San Francsico (1199 East Beach Drive, in the Presidio, near Marina Blvd entrance to the park)
Cost: Free, but if you want the activity passport/book it's $5
RSVP: You can buy tickets online here.
More info: Click here
Receive the fifth book in the Let's Go Chipper!(tm) series.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Coming Up: Sunday Streets


There's a popular San Francisco Sunday Streets this Sunday, April 18th!


Get out and walk, run, bike, skate - all without cars on the road. Check out the schedule here.


When: 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Where: Bayview

Cost: free


Future Sunday Streets:

May 23 - Bayview

June 20 - Mission

July 11 - Mission

August 22 - Great Highway, Golden Gate Park

September 19 - Western Addition

October 24 - Civic Center, Tenderloin

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Coming Up: So you Wanna Be a Conductor - with Clowns?

The San Francisco Chamber Orchestra is teaming up with Circus Bella clowns for three weekend events not to be missed. And they're free!

Expect an hour-long performance good for the whole family.

When/where:
Saturday, April 17 at 2 p.m. - SF Conservatory of Music (Concert Hall, 50 Oak St, SF)
Sunday, April 18 at noon - Laney College Theater (900 Fallon Street, Oakland)
Sunday, April 18 at 3 p.m. - Hilldale High School (315 Del Monte St, San Mateo)

Monday, April 12, 2010


Meet Bert, Ernie and Grover when the San Francisco Zoo helps kick off ticket sales for Sesame Street Live. They'll come to the Zoo on April 17 & 18.

Sesame Street Live “1-2-3 Imagine! with Elmo & Friends” apparently comes to the Bay Area in Oakland in June (though I can't give you a date, because as of when this was written, the date was not on the site's calendar).

You'll be able to meet and take picturs with Ernie, Bert & Grover, plus enjoy live entertainment, coloring, music and an adventurous scavenger hunt. Plus, you can enter to win tickets to the show.

Click here for details on Bert, Ernie & Grover at the SF Zoo.


What: Bert, Ernie & Grover at the SF Zoo

When: April 17 & 18 (10 a.m. to 4 p.m.)

Cost: included in zoo admission

RSVP: none


Friday, April 9, 2010

Coming Up: Sunday Streets

There's a popular San Francisco Sunday Streets this Sunday, April 11th! Get out and walk, run, bike, skate - all without cars on the road.

Check out the schedule here.

When: 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Where: Great Highway
Cost: free

Future Sunday Streets:
April 18 - Bayview
May 23 - Bayview
June 20 - Mission
July 11 - Mission
August 22 - Great Highway, Golden Gate Park
September 19 - Western Addition
October 24 - Civic Center, Tenderloin

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Restaurant.com coupon codes good through 4/11/10

This is the weekly posting with Restaurant.com coupon codes. I use the site frequently to save on meals when we eat out. They normally offer $25 gift certificates for $10, which is a good deal. But they usually run additional specials, like this week's - $25 gift certificates for $3. The sale is good through 11:59 p.m. midnight PST April 11th.


Here's how it works. Go to their website, restaurant.com and search for restauants. Find ones you want and add them to your cart. This week, use the code DISH to get the discount (then hit apply), and it shows up when you check out. Pay with a credit card and print out the certificates (or keep them online and print them out when you want to use them). They say they're good for a year, however one loyal reader pointed out that in California, there's no expiration date.

As always, I also have a link on the right side of the blog with the current coupon code.

Small print: The certificates have some restrictions - listed before you purchase (like maybe dining on Sunday to Thursday or buying at least 2 entrees), but if you find a restaurant you like or want to try - it's a great deal. The sale is good through April 11th, 2010 at 11:59 p.m. PST. Restaurant.com is a Frisco Kids affiliate, which means if you purchase using my link, I'll theoretically get a small commission. If I earn enough over time to warrant them paying out. At $3 a coupon, that probably won't happen, so I see it as just a service to my readers! I've been using them for over a year myself, so it's something I'm comfortable sharing with you.

Coming Up: Toilet Training and Sleep Classes

Check out the parenting classes at the Foster City library. They're run by the Parents Place.

Bye-Bye Diapers: Toilet Learning
Tuesday April 13th at 7 p.m.
Discussion will be an hour and will be led by a speaker from Parent's Place.

Solve Your Baby's Sleep Problems
Tuesday April 27 at 7 p.m.
Discussion will be an hour and will be led by a speaker from Parent's Place.

Coming up: Robot Demo at Hillsdale Shopping Center

Come see a Robot Demonstration & Exhibition Preview event, showing combat robots, walking humanoids, soccer bots, sumo bots, kung fu roids’ and more. The event is free, at Hillsdale Shopping Center (outside Macy’s). This preview kicks off the 7th annual RoboGames, the world's largest robot competition, which takes place soon after - April 23-25th, at the San Mateo Expo Center.

When: Saturday April 10 - Sunday, April 11, from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Where: Hillsdale Shopping Center (60 31st Ave., San Mateo)
Cost: free

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Coming Up: Lowe's Build and Grow Clinic - Mini Baseball Game


Lowe's Build and Grow Clinics are a fun way to get your kids making things. And they're free!
Here's what's coming up:

Make a Mini Baseball Game
Saturday, April 10, 2010 at 10 a.m.
To sign up, check out the Lowe's Build and Grow Clinic website.

Monday, April 5, 2010

Review: Kabuki Hot Springs

Get a Japanese bath experience...in San Francisco. Head over to Japantown.

While the Kabuki Hot Springs offers traditional spa services (massage, facials, body treatments and acupuncture), you’ll be just as relaxed going with the communal baths.

After depositing your clothes in the locker room, you’ll enter the serene bathing area. The spa area has dimmed lights, where you’ll find a dry sauna, steam room, hot pool, cold plunge, Western style showers (with curtains) and a seated Japanese-style bathing area. Take a bowl of salt (included - near the hot tub) and head over to the seated area to exfoliate, rinsing off with a hand-held sprayer. But don’t make the mistake of shaving before you arrive – or that salt will sting. I learned the hard way.

In between pools and bathing, you can relax on wooden recliners, sip tea and use the chilled-cucumber washcloths. The room is quiet, with some people reading magazines and some just resting their eyes. Stay an hour, or stay all day. All for $22-25 (the baths are $15 if you get a treatment as well). Leave your own toiletries at home - the Kabuki has shampoos, soaps, combs, lotions, towels and more.

The Kabuki Hot Springs baths are reserved on alternate days for men and women – so no need to worry about dropping your towel in front of the opposite sex. Men use the baths on Mondays, Thursdays and Saturdays, while it’s reserved for the ladies on Wednesday, Fridays and Sundays. As for Tuesdays: it’s co-ed (though clothing is required).

Most days it's no problem to just drop in. I went last Mother's Day, and did have to wait. Though I got there on the early side, so the wait wasn't long, and I could still sit in the relaxing spa corridors.


Sunday, April 4, 2010

Coming Up: Bubble Lady at Foster City library

Looking for some bubblicious fun? Check out the Bubble Lady at the Foster City library. She's performing for kids age three and older on Tuesday, April 6th 4 p.m. It's free!

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Coming Up: free admission to Bay Area Discovery Museum for Month of the Young Child Celebration

Don't miss the 6th annual Month of the Young Child Celebration at the Bay Area Discovery Museum in Sausalito! You'll get free admission to the event, on Saturday, April 10th, from 10 a.m. - 5 p.m.

The Bay Area Discovery Museum teams up with early childhood service organizations to honor and celebrate young kids. They're sponsoring free performances like the Mariachi Los Cachorros and the bluegrass band Kenny Blacklock and Friends.

Kids can "eat a rainbow" of fruits and vegetables with bilingual health educators. Boy, that part sounds exciting!

Seriously, though, this is a fabulous museum that I've written about for Family Fun Magazine. I love the place!

Friday, April 2, 2010

Coming Up: Babies Movie Screening Event

The new movie Babies is coming out - and it looks fabulous. It's a documentary that follows babies Ponijao (from Namibia), Mari (from Japan), Bayar (from Mongolia) and Hattie (from San Francisco) through their first year. You can see a trailer from the movie Babies here.

Watch a screening of the movie while supporting Embrace, a non-profit organization working to save babies worldwide, with low-cost infant incubators. Learn more about Embrace here or get information on the event here.

When: Wednesday, April 14, 2010 at 7:30pm (doors open at 7)

Where: AMC Metreon, 101 4th Street, San Francisco

Ticket Price: $30 donation

Includes: the $30 presale ticket includes a donation to Embrace, a preview screening of Babies, access to a exclusive Q&A session with Hattie's parents, and a special presentation by Embrace's CEO, Jane Chen.

Get Tickets: embracebabiesscreening.eventbrite.com

Coming Up: Madagascar 2 movie free - at Serramonte Center

This Friday, April 30th, see Madagascar 2 for free at Serramonte Center in Daly City. The movie starts at 5:30 in the Macy's wing.

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Coming Up: Family Sundays at SFMOMA

Coming up this month - free Sunday family tours and hands-on activities at SFMOMA. Kids 12 and under get in free (adults don't). Family tour (aimed at ages 4-11) starts at 1:00, with special programs starting at 2:00. Generally, the day (which runs from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.) includes the tour, hands-on art creation and other programming like movies, book readings and more. You need to RSVP since space is limited.

Here's what's coming up:

April 4 & 18 - Less is Best
According to SFMOMA: "Appreciate the choice of a small gesture, the art of taking away. Minimalism aptly demonstrates that less can be more. The short list? Sol LeWitt, Ed Ruscha, and Robert Ryman."

May 2 - The Joy of Junk
According to SFMOMA: "Any artist knows that someone's junk is another's treasure. Collect all you can. Spiff it up. Anything can be art, according to junk connoisseur Robert Rauschenberg."

June 6 & 20 - Focus on BLUR
According to SFMOMA: "What is it? It's playing with focus and light. It's using photography tricks to alter perception. It's the artist's visual truth. That's what. Picture Andy Warhol, Gerhard Richter, and Sigmar Polke, for a start."