Sunday, November 29, 2015

Bring Your Family to SeaWorld's Christmas Celebration

Where can you find Shamu, Santa and more than one million glimmering lights this holiday season? WE found it all at SeaWorld, of course!

It’s all part of SeaWorld’s Christmas Celebration®, kicking off Nov. 21 and continuing through Jan. 3, 2016. Festivities are included with park admission. The best way to enjoy SeaWorld’s Christmas Celebration is with a Fun Card. Guests who purchase a 2016 SeaWorld Fun Card can enjoy all of SeaWorld’s Christmas festivities in 2015, plus come back again and again in 2016.

Here’s a detailed look at SeaWorld’s Christmas Celebration 2015:

NEW – Toys for Tots Drive: Starting Nov. 6 through Dec. 13 SeaWorld San Diego is partnering with the Marine Corps Reserves San Diego Toys for Tots Program to deliver a message of hope to less fortunate youngsters through a new, unwrapped toy at Christmas. Guests can donate a toy (suggested retail value of $10 or more) at SeaWorld and receive a free child single-day admission with a full-paid single-day adult admission. Marine Toys for Tots Foundation is a non-profit 501(c)(3) charity that has been delivering smiles and toys to families since 1948.

NEW – A Sesame Street Christmas: This new show at Mission Bay Theater stars all the favorite Sesame Street friends who come together to share Christmas with Abby, a three-year-old fairy that grew up in Fairyland and is not familiar with the celebration and traditions of the Christmas season. After singing Christmas carols, learning about Santa, reindeer, jingle bells and gift giving, Abby discovers the true meaning of Christmas.

Shamu Christmas Miracles: Thrilling seasonal music rings out as amazing killer whales, gifted trainers and a talented female vocalist share a story of reflection and understanding, of peace and friendship and of the everyday miracles that surround us all year long. Guests will experience the power and beauty of Shamu’s family in this touching holiday favorite.

Dolphin Island Christmas: This Christmas-themed dolphin show celebrates the holidays with a tropical twist. Dolphins and pilot whales perform amazing athletic feats. Dancers get into the spirit as well during this daytime show at Dolphin Stadium.

Clyde and Seamore’s Christmas Special: SeaWorld’s prank-loving pinnipeds Clyde and Seamore have a hilarious holiday time in this Christmas-themed sea lion and otter show.

The Pets Rule Christmas: A specially-themed show featuring the shelter-adopted stars of the park’s Pets Rule! show. As the winter season begins, the pets partake in holiday hijinks.

KyXy Tree Lighting: Starting Nov. 27 and continuing through Dec. 25, KyXy 96.5 will simulcast the nightly SeaWorld’s Christmas Tree of Lights show at 6 p.m. The lights of Southern California’s largest Christmas tree—SeaWorld’s 320-foot Christmas Tree of Lights—will dance in sync with classic holiday songs.

A video posted by @lovelylysa on

Santa’s Christmas Village: This magical, holiday area is brimming with Christmas fun! Guests can mingle with Santa’s elves and Mrs. Claus; enjoy a sweet treat such as a waffle-on-a-stick; and, every day before Christmas get a photo with Santa. Plus, Mrs. Claus invites everyone to join her in a spirited sing-along to help her and the elves light a festive 40-foot animated tree. Rather than wait in line at Santa’s Cottage, guests can check in for a pager that allows families to hold their spot in line, freeing them up to enjoy all the Christmas Village has to offer.

Live Entertainment on Village Stage: Guests will enjoy sipping a cup of hot chocolate while listening to favorite holiday tunes from the Christmas Brass Band and new this year, performances by local community groups.

Santa’s Reindeer: On the lawn in front of Animal Connections, real reindeer from Santa’s workshop will delight guests with up-close and educational encounters. Guests can also get in the spirit by playing reindeer games or hopping on Santa’s sleigh for a magical Christmas photo.

Treat Yourself to Delectable Holiday Delights: Guests will be able to explore and celebrate culinary creations created by SeaWorld’s Executive Chef, Axel Dirolf. Favorites returning to the Christmas Village are waffle-on-a-stick, holiday mac & cheese, fresh baked pies and new this year is mashed potato pizza. Adults will delight in seasonal craft beer cart and adult holiday beverages. Christmas isn’t complete without a delicious turkey dinner and Chef Axel has pulled out all the fixings at Café 64 with SeaWorld’s “All About Turkey” menu featuring sweet chili turkey wings, classic oven roasted carved turkey, home-style holiday turkey pot-pie and more. In addition, holiday menus can be found at all of the park’s signature restaurants. Examples include the turkey cranberry burger at Shipwreck Reef Café and braised lamb shank at Calypso Bay Smokehouse.

Holiday Atmosphere: SeaWorld will be decked out more than ever before, with more than one and a half million low-energy holiday lights and a 40-foot tree with an animated light show. New specialty lighting will be glimmering bright at Explorer’s Reef, welcoming guests inside the park. Outside Pets’ Playhouse, guests will find the Cat’s Christmas Parlor, where the feline stars of Pets Rule! hang out in their own Christmas-themed house. Animal exhibits such as Shark Encounter, Penguin Encounter and Animal Connections get a
splash of holiday spirit with specialty-themed décor inside.

All Christmas Celebration festivities (except for arcade-style games and reserved experiences such as Breakfast With Shamu and Santa) are included with SeaWorld admission.

Visit SeaWorld website for details on tickets and hours of admission! Admission is $89 for ages 10 and older; $83 for ages 3-9; free for under 3. Parking is $16; $11 for motorcycles; $21 for RVs and Up-Close. Those who purchase a 2016 Fun Card can enjoy SeaWorld’s Christmas Celebration this year, plus all that SeaWorld has to offer in 2016!

For more details, 

Disclaimer: I received complimentary admissions to SeaWorld San DIego in exchange for this blog post. All opinions are mine. 

Friday, November 27, 2015

It's Not Too Late to Start Your Holiday Greeting Cards!

Celebrate the most wonderful time of the year with the festive and sentimental custom photo greeting cards!
At, snowflakes, candy canes and colorful ornaments are featured on joyful holiday backgrounds to showcase your photographs. Layouts allow you to build collages, feature a portrait across the gutter or frame snapshots inside holiday artwork. Your personal quotes and tags are highlighted in eye-catching typography.

Mixbook uses only the highest-quality, heavy-weight papers that are ethically sourced from sustainable forests and certified by the Forest Stewardship Council and the Rainforest Alliance. All of their products are backed by their 100% satisfaction guarantee, just like all of their other photo books, cards, and calendars.

With Mixbook, everything is customizable. Add your own photos and text, change the layout, add stickers and backgrounds - you are free to design a Book that is personal to you!

Here's our family greeting card I'm working on! What do you think?

My readers get to save just in time for the Holidays! 50% off cards & 10x10 photo books + 40% off site wide!

Disclaimer: I received a promotional item in exchange for this blog post. 

Friday, November 20, 2015

Motherhood Transcends Cultures at SD Rep's Production of The Oldest Boy

Disclaimer: I've received complimentary tickets in exchange for this blog post. All opinions are mine. 

It's Date Night! We're headed to the San Diego REPertory Theare (San Diego REP) for the Southern California Premiere of “The Oldest Boy” by Sarah Ruhl.

“We are excited to continue San Diego Rep’s 40th Anniversary Season with the production of ‘The Oldest Boy,’” says Sam Woodhouse, artistic director and co-founder, San Diego REPertory Theatre. “This production is a bewitching and beautiful meditation on motherhood, love and letting go as two parents decide whether their 3-year-old son should move to India to train as a Buddhist master. What’s great about this show is it mixes multiple mediums of not just music and dance but also puppetry. Also featured is Tsering Dorjee Bawa, who is a ‘quadruple’ threat singer/dancer/actor/choreographer, is Tibetan, trained at the famous Tibetan school in Dharamsala and may be the only professional Tibetan actor in America. Audiences will certainly be delighted to see our production of ‘The Oldest Boy.’”

Previews begin Thursday, Nov. 12, 2015 and runs through Sunday, Dec. 6, 2015 in the Lyceum Space.

Single tickets are now on sale and begin at $33. Student tickets for $20 are also available for all performances. Tickets can be purchased online at, by phone at 619-544-1000 or by visiting the box office at 79 Horton Plaza, San Diego, CA 92101.

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

The Most Comfortable Bra Ever

Disclaimer: I will receive promotional items in exchange for this blog post. All opinions are mine.
The struggle is real. Comfy bras for the mommy-on-the-go like me is hard to come by! Comfort, support, style, and quality material are all things I consider when looking for my daily wear bras.

I'm looking forward to trying the new Coobie Seamless Bras. They promise to be ultra comfortable and versatile without sacrificing style. These affordable, stylish bras are seamless, one-size (comfortably fits 32A through 36D), available in 10+ styles and 50+ fashion colors and patterns. There is also a full size that fits 38-42D.

I'm also looking forward to receiving my Violet Love Headbands. They are no-slip no-headache headbands that are perfect to wear for yoga, pilates, or just as a stylish accessory. They are made from Premium quality fabrics that are buttery soft and super comfy. These headbands are perfect for those not-so-perfect crazy hair days!

Just in time for holiday shopping, save 30% on any order of Coobie Seamless Bras or Violet Love Headbands at and with promotion code: USFG30.

Stay tuned for my review of my Coobie Seamless Bras and Violet Love Headbands coming soon!!

Monday, November 16, 2015

I Escaped from the School of Hard Locks

Birthdays are times to live it up and celebrate another year of life. My friend Joyce takes each birthday and invites her friends and family to accompany her in a new experience and adventure. 

Over the years for Joyce's birthday we've partaken in the revelries of a renaissance fair, set sail with a bunch of mateys at the Pirates Dinner Adventure, soaked in the mineral waters of Palm Springs, went ghost hunting on Old Town, danced with drag queens at Lips San Diego, and had my first experience at a karaoke bar and ate sushi off a revolving conveyor belt. 
Hot Springs Joyce
Renaissance Fair Joyce
Lips San Diego Joyce
Me with Wine Tasting Joyce
These are just to name a few of the fun times we've had celebrating my dear friend's birthdays! Each adventure has it's own stories and laugh to last a lifetime of reminiscing. 

For Joyce's birthday this year, she wanted to visit The School of Hard Locks. When she first told me about this I was a bit scared because Joyce has an affinity for horror movies, the supernatural, and things of the like. So, I was thinking this "school" was some sort of scary funhouse which I knew Joyce would love to try. 

Thank goodness it wasn't. She sent me the link to the website and here's what it said:

What is "The School of Hard Locks"?
Real-life room escape games are an immersive adventure game in which people are locked in a room with other participants and have to use their wits, persistence and collaboration skills to escape the room within a set time limit. Whether you are with a group of family members, friends, co-workers or even strangers, your goal is simple: find clues, solve puzzles, and work together to open the locked door in under 60 minutes.

Our group of 7 arrived and was greeted by Tony, the host at the School of Hard Locks. He explained the rules and had us put all of our personal belongings in lockers. We were not allowed to bring anything with us inside the locked room, especially cellphones.  Joyce was super excited to start the game!

Before we entered the room, Tony shared the background story to the "Principal's Office" we were entering, We were going back into time to the year of 1970 helping solve a mystery that happened at this one particular school. 

Our group was a bit giggly during all the rules and background story. I think it was anxious giggles of what was to come. 

Once we were in the room and the door locked, we darted. Each of us to different part of the room, finding locks, keys, notes, puzzles, messages, and more. For the first 15 minutes we were frazzled with all the clues we found trying to make sense of it all. Every once in a while the principal came on the loud-speaker to make an "announcement" which were more clues to help us solve the puzzle to get us out of the room. There was math, money, play on words, dates and times to remember, translation dictionaries to be used, clues in the dark, even clues on Silly Putty. 

At the end of our 60 minutes, we did not unlock the door to get us out of the room. Tony came back in asked if we wanted to continue, and of course we said YES! Tony congratulated us on the clues we had solved so far and guided us a bit with a few more hints, then again locked the door.

Our team worked hard to use what Tony gave us to  solve the last few steps to unlock the door. But, at the end of our extra 30 minutes, we did not unlock the final lock to escape the Principal's Office. 

This was a great experience and lots of fun! It was challenging and took each member of our team to do their part. Next time we hope to try the "Science Lab" room for another challenge! We hope next time we'll unlock the door successfully! 

To book your own School of Hard Locks experience, visit Be sure to check Groupon for occasional deals!

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

#TechnologyTuesday: When Smartphones Ruin Weddings

I have a new pet peeve: smartphone photographers at wedding ceremonies.

Being a guest at a wedding is special. The bride and groom chose you to be their 'guest'. They want you to witness their union and be participants in the experience. They hire photographers to capture THEIR special moments and it's unfortunate when those special moments are ruined by a guest who NEEDS to take pictures for their OWN enjoyment.

Here are a few examples of wedding guests with their smartphones right in front of the professional, hired photographers.
Photo compliments of
compliments of
My cousin, who is like a little sister to me, is getting married this weekend and I wanted to make sure this doesn't happen on her special day. With her permission, I've made a small flyer to give to guests as they arrive at the ceremony. 

With a little help from Pinterest, here's what I came up with:

Here are some tips on how to be a tech savvy guest at a wedding:

1) Put your phone away during the "program". If someone is speaking, you should be listening. If something is being presented, you should be watching. Ceremony, first dance, cake cutting, and speeches are important parts of a wedding. Be a good guest and be present! Many weddings nowadays encourage social media shares with a customized hashtag. Post away if this is the case and use the "downtimes" during the wedding festivities for taking pictures and social media sharing.

2) During the ceremony, stay in your seats to ensure you don't get in the way of the professional photographers.

3) The couple hired photographers not only to capture their special moments, but also to document the company of family and friends in attendance. The couple wants pictures of your smiling faces having a great time, not pictures of you with your camera or phone pointed at them.

4) Most photographers allow their guests access to an online album after the wedding so when the professional photographer comes around, be sure to smile and strike a pose. It's OK to ask photographer for a business card or contact the couple after the wedding to view the pictures.

5) Lastly, be a helpful guest and remind those around you to put their devices away during the ceremony and other key moments in the wedding. A friendly reminder saying, "Sit back, relax, and give your camera a break. Let the professionals do the job."

I hope cousin Carol and soon-to-be husband Mitch have a blessed wedding this Saturday! It's an honor for me to be a part of it all! Cheers!

What are your technology pet peeves?

Monday, November 9, 2015

Put Your Child in the Story with Crayon Crunch

One of my most cherished times with my kids is when we're snuggling together reading. Reading has always been one of our favorite family activities. Just recently, we've read our first chapter book together. It took a few weeks to read, with reading a chapter every night. Nonetheless, the experience was priceless and has fostered my sons' love of reading all the more.

Sometimes our boys read the same book, over and over again. Other times, we're able to read a new book every day through reading apps on my boys' iPads. But with our new discovery, Crayon Crunch, our boys are able to experience reading in a while new way by finding themselves embedded as characters into the very stories they are reading!

With you can send your child on a one of a kind literary adventure. On the website, you can choose and combine different hairstyles, hair colors, skin tones, facial features, eye colors, clothing, and possible disabilities to create the lead character, YOUR CHILD!

I had such a fun time creating my son DJ for his personalized book! I tried to match his character's clothes to DJ's own favorite outfits. DJ was so surprised when he saw his character he said, "Wow Mom! He really looks like me!"

Reading the story together, I could see DJ more engaged in any of the stories he's read before. He really put himself in the story and let his imagination go! Seeing his character on the page brought the story to life. He'd stop every so often and ask me clarifying questions or predict what would happen on the next page. It was so much fun watching him engage in the story. 

The printed letter at the end of the book is what really makes the book special! When you customize your book, parents are encouraged to write a personalized letter to be printed at the end of the story. In our letter to DJ, we wrote some of the words of advice we give him regularly which made the book even more unique. When DJ read, "Mom and Dad want you to be the best DJ you can be...", he knew this book was made just for him! When I shared with my son that no one else in the whole world had a book just like his, his eyes lit up. 

The captivating adventure story, coupled with the awesome, colorful illustrations is a story any young child would love!

So, how does it work?

1) Visit and click "Character Creator" to create your custom character to mirror your child's characteristics. 
2) The book can be ordered with either a soft cover or a hard cover.
3) Free shipping gets your book delivered to your door!

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Bring Your Family to the San Diego Asian Film Festival!

It's that time of the year again for Pacific Arts Movement's annual San Diego Asian Film Festival!

The San Diego Asian Film Festival (SDAFF) is San Diego’s premier film showcase of Asian American and international cinema. Founded in 2000, the festival has grown to become the largest exhibition of Asian cinema in the western United States, and has showcased everything from future classics like Bong Joon-ho’s Memories of Murder (US Premiere) to luminary independent work like Patrick Wang’s award-winning In the Family (North American Premiere). Each year, the festival brings West Coast and world premieres of films from around the world to San Diego and gives audiences unique opportunities to discover international cinema.

I have lots of found memories volunteering with SDAFF years ago when I was in college. It was such a great time meeting actors, film makers, and more! Each year I look forward to attending SDAFF and reliving my great memories being a part of the festival team. 

Here are my mom, dad, and I at the 2013 festival to watch "Harana".  The film was about the tradition of serenade from the Philippines. The music was wonderful and touching. A few times I was in tears remembering my late grandfather who loved the music of "Harana".

This year I'm excited to bring my kids to SDAFF for the first time.  My boys love the movies and I'm so proud of their interests in learning about different cultures and experiences. I'm happy to share with you the family-friendly programming offered at SDAFF this year!


San Diego Premiere- Nov. 7, 11:00 AM, UltraStar
Family-friendly animated and live-action short films about resilience, childhood, acceptance, and friendship. For the first time in SDAFF history, this program was curated (researched and selected) by local San Diego high school students to teach them the art of programming. Free for kids 12 and under.

West Coast Premiere- Nov.8, 1:00 PM, UltraStar
Miriam Yeung plays a star school principal who can get any job she wants, but opts instead to save a struggling kindergarten from closing on its five students. With uncommon sincerity and a mountain of cuteness, this family-friendly Hong Kong hit fights class inequality with the fervor of principle.

World Premiere- Nov. 8, 12:00 PM, UltraStar
12 high school students from San Diego create documentaries based on subjects in their own lives. Free admission.

San Diego Premiere- Nov. 12, 6:10 PM, UltraStar
A documentary about a Hawaiian girl’s four-year journey to become a world champion in judo and wrestling.  

Family friendly programs are located at the SDAFF’s home base of the Ultrastar Mission Valley, Hazard Center, 7510 Hazard Center Drive | San Diego, CA 92108.

To learn all about what the San Diego Asian FIlm Fesitval has to offer, visit their website at or visit them on Facebook

Hope to see you at the festival!

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