Christmas Tree Lighting Events

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Well we are about half way through November so that means it’s time to get ready for Christmas. I know it seems a bit early but many of the Holiday season’s events are already starting. Just like Christmas Tree Lightings at many malls and other city locations. Some lightings also feature a very special guest that’s right the big man in the red suit himself, Santa! So here are some awesome tree lighting events to check out.

Riverside County

Temecula Promenade

Saturday November 21st

The fun begins at 6pm with pre-lighting activities. Santa will be making his debut at the mall during this event. There will be two large screens up so attendees can catch a clear view of the magic. This will be a very magical evening with Snowfall, Fireworks and music. For more information visit promenadetemecula.com

The Shops at Dos Lagos

Saturday November 21st

Come early to enjoy a family fun screening of the Polar Express. The movie will be played for FREE at 10am in the Dos Lagos Luxury Theaters. Then in the evening enjoy a very special tree lighting event. There will be crafts, face painting, ballon artist and entertainment for kids to enjoy. And watch the skies because Santa will be making his arrival there that night! The tree lighting fun starts at 5pm. For more information visit
shopdoslagos.com

South Coast Winery Resort & Spa

Sunday November 29th

Take a holiday trip out to Temecula’s Wineries for a fun family tree lighting event. Special performances by Murrieta Dance Company and RCC Chambers Singers, who will be dressed up in vintage costumes. There will be a viewing of Disney’s Frozen. Enjoy some coco, wine and snacks available for purchase at the concession. Catch a tractor ride through the holiday lite vineyard. And be sure to spot Santa and some of his elves as they will be making appearances. This wonderful is FREE to attend be sure to check it out! For more information visit
southcoastwinery.com

Temecula Duck Pond

Thursday December 3rd

Come join the 18th Annual Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony. There will be special treats and live vocal performances. And a special visit from Old Saint Nick! Guest help countdown to a very special tree lighting at 7pm. This is a great tradition put on by the city of Temecula. For more information visit
temeculaevents.org

Menifee Town Center

Saturday December 12th

Menifee will be throwing quite a tree lighting celebration from 4pm to 8pm. There will be live entertainment and a outdoor holiday movie playing. As wells as a very fun Elves Ornament workshop where you can make a special holiday keepsake. Plus there will be a kids snow play zone! Vendors will be there selling delicious treats and holiday crafts. And of course see and take a photo with Santa. For more information visit cityofmenifee.us

Orange County

Fashion Island

Saturday November 13th – January 3rd

Enjoy nightly tree lightings starting November 13th until January 3rd. With the help of some Disney magic watch the lights twinkle and glitter to Disney Holiday music. For more information visit shopfashionisland.com

San Diego County

Santee Trolley Square

Friday November 20th

So much fun is going on at the Santee Trolley Square from 5:30 to 8:30pm for the Tree Lighting Celebration. There will be games, crafts, carriage rides and snow! Don’t forget to visit Santa and get a photo taken with him. There is no cost to enter this event or for the crafts and games, only for select activities with prices ranging from $2 and up.
For more information visit ci.santee.ca.us

The Headquarters at Seaport District

Friday November 27th

Come celebrate the start of a three-week donation program to benefit active-duty military families. This special event is not only filled with fun but with the holiday spirit of giving. Enjoy FREE hot cocoa and treats. Visit and take a photo with Santa. Listen to the talented All American Boys Chorus perform for the Giving Tree Lighting celebration. The 25 foot tall Giving Tree will be light up at 6:30pm. For more information visit theheadquarters.com

Little Italy

Saturday December 5th

Downtown San Diego’s Little Italy transforms for the holiday season. The kick off for this is during the Tree Lighting and Christmas village event. Visitors on this day are treated to FREE Italian cookies, cider and coffee. Enjoy live music and entertainment. Keep a look out for St. Nick who be arriving on a fire engine (at 4:30pm). Watch the 25 foot tall Poinsettia Tree be lite up, you can also be apart of the tree by sponsoring a poinsettia plant. For more information visit littleitalysd.com

This is just a few of the great events I have found so far. Be sure to check out your city’s events or even malls for any special happens going on for the holiday season.

Cruzin Mama

Disney Store Summer Play Days

Images courtesy of Disney

Images courtesy of Disney

Summer Play Days are back at the Disney Store!

Be sure to stop by the Disney Store and check out their free Summer Play Days events this summer. The fun starts this Saturday June 6th with a very special Inside Out event! Come and show your emotions with the gang from Inside Out (this event will continue on Saturdays throughout June). Summer Play Days are fun free events put on by the Disney Store, kids can learn to draw, answer trivia, take part in an interactive story time, and much more. During Summer Play days your child is given a lanyard to wear and to collect the Summer Play Days weekly pin. *Lanyard and pins only available for a limited time and quantities are limited*

2015 Summer Pin Schedule

Summer Play Days weekly pins

My kid's lanyard so far!

My kid’s lanyard during last years Summer Play Days!

Bonus Pins!

Make sure to also go to the Mike’s Trivia Challenge events. After completing the trivia challenge your child receives an extra pin! There are different pins to collect at each trivia challenge so you will want to try to attend a few of these as well.

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Play Day Events

  • Inside Out– *Details coming soon*
  • Showtime – Interactive play with a Disney character on the stores big screen
  • Mike’s Trivia Challenge Learn Disney Trivia, then test your knowledge
  • Star Wars Jedi training Academy, learn to use a light saber and help the Rebels
  • Marvel – Avengers Assemble, learn different Avenger’s moves and become an honorary member, design your own Captain America shield, these are just a few of the Marvel events
  •  The Art of Animation – Learn to draw a character just like a Disney Animator

 

Swimming and chatting with Crush during a Showtime event. Very similar to Turtle Talk featured at Disney California Adventure.

Swimming and chatting with Crush during a Showtime event. Very similar to Turtle Talk featured at Disney California Adventure.

Nemo snorkel masks and lanyards on for Showtime Summer Play Day event.

Nemo snorkel masks and lanyards on for Showtime Summer Play Day event.

Learning how to draw frog version of Prince Naveen.

Learning how to draw the frog version of Prince Naveen.

We absolutely loved the Play Day events at Disney Store last year, I highly recommend attending a few this summer. Click here to find a store nearest you. 

Have a blast!

Cruzin Mama

Star Wars Celebration 2015 *Recap* Part 1

Star Wars Celebration 2015

Happy Star Wars Day!

Since it’s Star Wars Day it’s the perfect day to share all that I can about the recent Star Wars Celebration that was held in Anaheim, California. The Star Wars Celebration is just what it sounds like, a celebration of all things Star Wars. There was costume characters, replica sets, droids, fans, fun and much more. It was truly an amazing experience and I hope that I will be able to attend another Celebration.

Chicken Boba Fett and a Scout Trooper

Tusken Raider becoming friends with a Droid

Even before you head into the Convention Center you are greeted by fans of all ages and in all types of costumes and fan gear. That’s the great thing about Star Wars it’s for everyone!

Scout Trooper on Endor

There was so much to see and do once inside the convention center it’s almost a bit overwhelming at first. For me it was nice to get a few photo ops done and just walk around to see where everything is. The main floor featured vendor booths, replica sets, exhibits of fan art, collectibles, costumes and more. The Celebration is the perfect place to fill all your Star Wars shopping needs. Many companies attend such as; Hasbro, Lego, Toys”R”Us, Build-A-Bear, Jakks Pacific, Hallmark, DK Publishing, Her Universe, and of course there is the Celebration shop with Celebration exclusive merchandise. Almost all the vendors had exclusive items just for the Celebration and some had a different exclusive item each day. Many also had sneak peeks of upcoming products.

Giant Furbacca

Life Size Vader Hot Wheels Car

Jakks Pacific Fall Sneak Peek

Her Universe Celebration Booth

All the set replicas were amazing! They truly made you feel like you stepped into a Star Wars film. Some were just set up as a part of a vendors booth while most were for awesome photo opportunities.

Endor set replica

Hoth Rebel Base

Luke's Landspeeder

R2-D2 and Jawas

Bacta Tank

Millennium Falcon lounge

501st Exhibit Area

This is only a glimpse of what Star Wars Celebration is. I would love to share every detail but for now I am signing off. Keep an eye out for continuing Celebration posts, the next ones will feature an inside look at the Episode VII special exhibit and the panel of the next season of Disney’s Star Wars Rebels.

And as always May the Force be with you!

Cruzin Mama

Disney Holiday Fun Outside the Parks

Olaf’s Frozen Ice Rink Downtown Disney

I love to visit Disneyland during Halloween or Holiday time. The decorations inside the parks are so festive and very in tune to Disney’s family fun style. I also love how some of the rides are completely transformed. Unfortunately I can’t always afford to visit the parks during this time, so the next best thing is Disney fun outside the Parks! There are quite a few ways to enjoy a little Disney Magic outside the parks. So I just wanted to share some Disney fun my kids had a blast seeing and I recommend checking these out before the Magic fades away.

Visit Downtown Disney

Downtown Disney Holiday Lights

One of the closet ways to enjoy Dinseyland without actually going into the Parks is to go to Downtown Disney. Downtown Disney features many shops, restaurants and entertainment. And there is decorations and special fun just for the holidays there. Be sure to take advantage of the FREE parking offered for Downtown Disney. You will be able to receive 3 hours of FREE parking and with certain validations up to 5 hours FREE!

Disney Treats

Visit Marceline’s Confectionery for some delicious treats that are also found inside the parks.

Olaf's Frozen Ice Rink

Go for a skate at Olaf’s Frozen Ice Rink and visit the Winter Village. Olaf brought some of Elsa’s magic from Arendelle to Downtown Disney with his holiday ice rink. Set up in between ESPN Zone and the AMC Theater is a fun skating opportunity that is surrounded by Downtowns Winter Village, which are snow-caped cottages featuring special holiday gifts and souvenirs. The ice rink and village will be in Downtown until February 22nd.

See The Grand Californian’s Gingerbread House

Grand Californian's Gingerbread House

Grand Californian’s Gingerbread House

While visiting Downtown Disney be sure to make a stop into the Grand Californian Hotel. Inside the lobby is a gorgeous 500lb Gingerbread House modeled after the hotel. It stands at 7 1/2 ft tall and is 12 ft wide and is the work of 1 Dreamer, 6 Craftsmen and 25 Team Members. It is truly a delicious sight! As with all things Disney be on the look out for 7 Hidden Mickeys. Try and take a minute to just enjoy the Hotels lobby while there. The lobby is beautifully set up and creates such a nice relaxing atmosphere.

Gingerbread Grand Californian Entrance

Gingerbread Grand Californian Entrance

The details of the Gingerbread Hotel are just so amazing! My daughter kept telling me how much she wished she could just take one bite, haha. The Gingerbread Hotel will be checking out January 6th so hurry to catch a glimpse of it!

Irvine Spectrum Disney Holiday Light Show

Irvine Spectrum's Disney Magical Holiday Lights

Every night until January 4th the Edwards Courtyard located at the Irvine Spectrum comes to life with Disney Magic. A special holiday light show from Disneyland Resort is on display here and has nightly showings. The showing are a brief glimpse of what the Holiday Magic inside the Parks is like. The shows begin at 5:30pm and happens every hour after until closing. This is such a fun little show to catch if you happen to be in the area. Also Fashion Island features a similar Tree Lighting set to Disney Holiday music.

Mickey striking up the band.

Mickey striking up the band.

So go enjoy some Disney fun outside the Parks!

Cruzin Mama

O’ Christmas Tree (Lighting) and Santa’s Arrival

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Well we are about half way through November so that means it’s time to get ready for Christmas. I know it seems a bit early but many of the Holiday season’s events are already starting. Just like Christmas Tree Lightings at many malls and other city locations. Some lightings also feature a very special guest that’s right the big man in the red suit himself, Santa! So here are some awesome tree lighting events to check out.

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Temecula Promenade

Saturday November 15th

The fun begins at 6pm with pre-lighting activities and also a FREE gift for the kids who arrive early. There is a limited supply of the free gift and it is for children 10 and under. Plus Santa will be making his debut at the mall during this event. There will be two large screens up so attendees can catch a clear view of the magic. This will be a very magical evening with Snowfall, Fireworks and music. With this nice cooler weather finally here the evening should be the perfect setting for the Holiday season. For more information visit promenadetemecula.com

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Image from Fashion Island’s Instagram

Fashion Island

Saturday November 15th

Come join Mickey and his Friends at this tree lighting filled with Disney magic! The fun starts at 6pm, but you can reserve seating starting at 8am. Guests will be treated to exclusive performances and are encouraged to sing-a-long to some holiday favorites. Plus with the help of some Disney magic there will be snowfall! The magic will remain until January 4th. So every night enjoy the beautifully lit tree along with Disney holiday music. For more information visit shopfashionisland.com

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Santee Trolley Square

Friday November 21st

So much fun is going on at the Santee Trolley Square from 5:30 to 8:30pm for the Tree Lighting Celebration. There will be games, crafts, carriage rides and snow! Don’t forget to visit Santa and get a photo taken with him. There is no cost to enter this event or for the crafts and games, only for select activities with prices ranging from $2 and up.
For more information visit ci.santee.ca.us

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The Shops at Dos Lagos

Saturday November 22nd

Come early to enjoy a family fun screening of the Polar Express. The movie will be played for FREE at 10am in the Dos Lagos Luxury Theaters. Then in the evening enjoy a very special tree lighting event. There will be crafts, face painting, ballon artist and entertainment for kids to enjoy. And watch the skies because Santa will be making his arrival there that night! The tree lighting fun starts at 5pm. For more information visit shopdoslagos.com

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The Headquarters at Seaport District

Friday November 28th

Come celebrate the start of a three-week donation program to benefit active-duty military families. This special event is not only filled with fun but with the holiday spirit of giving. Enjoy FREE hot cocoa and treats. Visit and take a photo with Santa. Listen to the talented All American Boys Chorus perform for the Giving Tree Lighting celebration. The 25 foot tall Giving Tree will be light up at 6:30pm. For more information visit theheadquarters.com

Image from temeculaevents.org

Image from temeculaevents.org

Temecula Duck Pond

Thursday December 4th

Come join the 17th Annual Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony. There will be special treats and live vocal performances. And a special visit from Old Saint Nick! Guest help countdown to a very special tree lighting at 7pm. This is a great tradition put on by the city of Temecula. For more information visit temeculaevents.org

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Menifee Town Center

Friday December 5th

Menifee will be throwing quite a tree lighting celebration from 4:30 to 7:30pm on December 5th. There will be live entertainment and a outdoor holiday movie playing. As wells as a very fun Elves Ornament workshop where you can make a special holiday keepsake. Plus there will be a kids snow play zone! Vendors will be there selling delicious treats and holiday crafts. And of course see and take a photo with Santa. For more information visit cityofmenifee.us

Image from littleitalysd.com

Image from littleitalysd.com

Little Italy

Saturday December 6th

Downtown San Diego’s Little Italy transforms for the holiday season. The kick off for this is during the Tree Lighting and Christmas village event. Visitors on this day are treated to FREE Italian cookies, cider and coffee. Enjoy live music and entertainment. Keep a look out for St. Nick who be arriving on a fire engine (at 4:30pm). Watch the 25 foot tall Poinsettia Tree be lite up, you can also be apart of the tree by sponsoring a poinsettia plant. For more information visit littleitalysd.com

This is just a few of the great events I have found so far. Be sure to check out your city’s events or even malls for any special happens going on for the holiday season.

Cruzin Mama

Allergy Friendly Halloween Treats

Putting up my online teal pumpkin (image from foodallergy.org)

Putting up my online teal pumpkin (image from foodallergy.org)

Help make Halloween not so scary for kids with allergies!

I love Halloween time and have been finding so much fun activities to take my kids to. Especially ones to get a good wear out of their costumes. A downside to attending events and parties is having a child with severe food allergies, I worry about what will be served or given out and if he’s going to notice that he is missing out on things. So I have been so pleasantly surprised with the treats they have received at these events. There has been such a move in recent years to helping kids make healthier choices and you can see this so much in the treats that are being given out at events. I was so excited on our recent trip to Brick-or-Treat at Legoland to see healthy snacks and non-food items that were given out at the treat stations. My son was able to have his very first juice box there! We also attended a little Halloween Party at our local Disney Store and the treat bags they gave out contained “Apple Chippies!”(dried Apple slices), as my son likes to call them. Finally seeing items in his treat bags that he can enjoy is so awesome.

My little guy enjoying his first juice at Brick-or-Treat

My little guy enjoying his first juice at Brick-or-Treat

F.A.R.E. (Food Allergy Research & Education) has a great request going on for Halloween, it’s called the Teal Pumpkin Project. The project is fairly easy just paint a pumpkin teal and leave it out to let trick-or-treaters know that you are handing out non-food items. That’s it, a great simple request so that children with food allergies can have a not-so-scary Halloween.

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Non Food Treat Ideas

  • Glow Sticks, Bracelets, Necklaces
  • Bracelets
  • Necklaces
  • Pencils
  • Vampire teeth
  • Stickers
  • Bubbles
  • Bouncy Balls
  • Spider Rings

Allergy Friendly Treat Ideas

*Parents should still check all food items their child receives to make sure they are ok with their child’s allergies. I am a constant label reader and if I am not sure about an item I will give him something else, we never chance it. The food items I listed are just some items I have found safe for my son or look to be free of the 8 common allergens.*

Hope this helps everyone to have a safe and great Halloween!

Cruzin Mama

Disney Store Special Events

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October Special Events at the Disney Store

Along with the daily activities offered at Disney Stores there is a few fun events happening this month. This information is directly from my local Disney Store so be sure to check with yours to verify special event dates and times.

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Join the Rebellion

Special event is this Saturday October 11th and Sunday October 12th. Come and help celebrate the brand new Star Wars Rebel series that premieres Monday October 13th on Disney X D. Get a chance to catch a glimpse of the new series and also participate in some inter-galactic activities. Plus a FREE giveaway. There will be several sessions so that there is plenty of opportunity to check out the fun.

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Star Wars Rebellion
Saturday October 11th
10:30am, 11:30am and 12:30pm

Sunday October 12th
12:30pm, 1:30pm and 2:30pm

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Halloween Dress Rehearsal

Have your kids come dressed up for some pre-Halloween fun next Friday and Saturday. There will be crafts, games and a costume parade!

Friday October 17th
5:00pm – 6:30pm

Saturday October 18th
11:00am – 12:30pm

Rock your Disney side!

Cruzin Mama

D23 Expo 2015

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Disney’s D23 Expo is coming back to Anaheim August 2015. This Expo is the perfect event for any Disney fan. With exclusive sneak peeks at upcoming films and games, as well as an in depth look at Disney Imagineering. Oh and can’t forget about the celebrities, see them discuss their characters or film on a panel or collect some autographs. The Expo is completely geared towards families so all ages are welcome. There is tons of exclusive merchandise and collectables. Tickets are on sale now and are at a discount for a limited time. Also get even better savings by becoming a D23 member you can join for free! To become a D23 member click on the link provided. You can purchase your Expo tickets here.

Rock your Disney side!

Cruzin Mama

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Frozen at Disney Store Summer Play Days

Posted in Summer Fun! 

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Disney Stores Summer Play Days is still going on until September 1st. These daily events that are happening in the store such as learning to draw your favorite characters, becoming an honorary Avenger, listening to your favorite Disney story, or test your Disney knowledge with a fun trivia game. By attending one of these events your child will receive a special Summer Play Days button. Each week is a new button to collect and right now the featured button is Anna with Olaf from Frozen! image

Try to go to Trivia event days when a bonus pin is giving out pertaining to the Trivia theme. Both my kids have been having so much fun. Everyday has a different event planned so it’s nice to pick and chose which to attend.

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Showtime days seem to be very popular. We just attended one which was completely full. It was a Showtime featuring everyone’s favorite toy doctor Doc McStuffins. The kids helped Doc fix up her friends and learned a dance about washing your hands. All the children who attended revived their very own magic stethoscope just like Docs(well a cutout version but still very fun).

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The Anna and Olaf button is available until Sunday while supplies last. There are still some very cool buttons coming up for the final weeks of Summer Play Days. Collect them while you can and keep checking out the Disney Stores free events.

Cruzin Mama
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Frozen Friday

Posted in Summer Fun!

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It’s Frozen Friday this Friday at Barnes and Noble for Get Pop-Cultured. There will be crafts, sing-a-long, story time, photo ops and plenty of activities. Activities are going on throughout the day with the sing-a-long and story time happening at 7pm.

Let it go and join the fun!

Cruzin Mama