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FREE November 2020

Time for Our Annual



Raising Hope The key to helping families thrive

We’re HERE for

YOU Flu season is here. It’s more important than ever to make sure your children get their flu vaccine, as well as all their routinely scheduled vaccines.

CPMG is here to provide the safest and best care for your children, everyday. Schedule an appointment knowing that we are dedicated to making sure that your kids are healthy and happy.

With locations throughout San Diego and Southern Riverside, we can achieve this together.

in partnership with

Healthy kids. Happy parents. • 1-877-276-4543



Flu Season & the effects of COVID... So here we are, officially seven months into the COVID pandemic, and by the time you read this, it will be a whopping eight months! There

is not a day that goes by now that I’m not asked about my thoughts on COVID. I’ve been thrown the reins as an expert, yikes! I guess I am just as much of an expert as a lot of people speaking to it on TV because I have been on the front lines of medicine for a very long time, and we in pediatrics actually know a great deal about infectious disease.

Prior to COVID, at least 30% of cases we would see would involve an infectious disease -- from colds and viruses to strep throat and influenza, from skin infections to urinary tract infections, bronchiolitis, conjunctivitis, sinusitis, otitis, even mononucleosis and much more. Our days were filled with infectious diseases. We knew and understood the seasonality of disease, the spread at school and daycare, and when to expect the highs and lows of patients coming in with these infections. But the Coronavirus was/is different. It wasn’t a strain we were familiar with, hence, calling it a novel strain. And because of that, we were all susceptible to it and its complications. Seven months ago, we did not know what to expect. The virus came fast and strong and was very scary for all of us. Since then, we have learned a great deal about the virus and who the virus picks on. Fortunately, unlike the Swine Flu, this Coronavirus has not been a fan of children. We are lucky! Most children with COVID-19 have mild symptoms or have no symptoms at all and are much less likely to require hospitalization or die from the disease (as of the writing of this, there have been

by Gina Rosenfeld, MD

89,498 cases in children in California and 2 deaths)1. And, as we have all learned by now, people 65 and older and people with underlying diseases are the most vulnerable.

With that being said, and some schools already back and others considering going back soon, the #1 question on families’ minds is, “is it safe to go back to school?”

Unfortunately, my answer is not that simple. There is no one-size-fits-all with this disease, and what I ask of parents is to take a good look at their particular situation when deciding. Who is in the home with you? Is it just mom, dad, and siblings? Do grandparents live there, too, or do you rely on them to help you with childcare? Does anyone have an underlying condition that leaves them more susceptible/ vulnerable? All of these are essential questions for you to consider when thinking about sending your child back to school. But that’s just half of it. School plays a big role in your children’s mental, social, and emotional health, and there are other factors to consider. Are they happy at home, do they spend time with the family, do they have a good appetite, and are they sleeping? All signs of being well adjusted. Have they lost or gained weight? Do they spend a lot of time alone, in their room, sleeping too much or too little? All signs that they aren’t doing as well as you think. I know most of my patients would like me to decide for them, but I believe my role as their pediatrician is to help guide them to the best solution for their children and family as a whole.

This brings us to question #2, “is it safe to come into the office, and are vaccines necessary if we are staying home?” Easy -- yes, and yes!

In fact, it’s never been a cleaner, safer, and better time to make sure your babies, kids, and teens are up to date on their exams and immunizations. We, as pediatricians, practice preventative medicine. It’s what we do best! Wellness exams not only include physical health, but also screen and monitor growth, nutrition, development, vision, hearing, body changes, mood, emotion, and mental health. We might make it look easy, but when we’re in the room, we’re assessing all of the above while making sure not to miss any abnormalities on the exam. Second, and equally important, are vaccinations. Routine vaccines help protect children and adolescents from 16 serious diseases -- wow! And it’s never been more apparent that protection is the best prevention. You might be at home now, but that doesn’t offer protection; these diseases are real, have withstood the test of time, and bring actual morbidity and mortality to our children. So, as your newfound “expert,” I want to remind you that we always have and will always be your partner in your child’s physical and mental health. Give us a

call, schedule an appointment, and let’s keep our kids safe, happy, healthy, and educated! 1

I could talk about this all day (and do) but would be remiss if I didn’t talk about another vital pediatrician role: wellness exams, and vaccinating your children.

Dr. Rosenfeld is a pediatrician practicing in San Marcos, and is the mother of two boys.

Gina Rosenfeld, MD Pediatrician and mom

• • • • •

16 Women Who Mean Business Meet three inspiring local moms


• • • • • • •

• • • • • • •


Volume 39 • Number 8 • November 2020



38 ce 1 9 82

in every issue 10 Staff Page 12 Short & Sweet News | Notes | Tips 26 November Calendar of Family Events 30 The Marketplace

DON’T MISS THIS! San Diego Babies & Toddle rs

14 Raising Hope The key to helping families thrive

Available Nov. 1 renting/baby

20 Be a Good Neighbor How to help kids connect to their community 22 Giving Thanks, Volunteering and All That Stuff(ing) Meaningful ways to express gratitude 24 Holiday Toy Guide Part one of our kid-tested toy round-up

On the Cover:

31 Have Your (cheese)Cake and Eat it, too! Sweet Potato Swirled Cheesecake

(5) of Jamul wants everyone

In the spirit of gratitude, Leah

to know she’s very thankful

Photo credit:

for her new puppy, Gala.

4 • • November 2020

Cover photo: All Colors Photography


on the web Get to know, where you’ll discover a plethora of awesomeness for parents.

Things to Do: Seasonal Happenings • 9 Ways to Thank a Veteran • Fun Things to Do After Thanksgiving Dinner • How to Have a Charlie Brown Thanksgiving

Things to Do: Dining & Recipes


To enter these contests, visit, go to “Contests”, then “This Month’s Contests.”

To celebrate the giving season, we’re giving away select toys from our Kid-Tested Toy Review on page 24 & 25. Enter today for a chance to win! Contest ends Nov. 30.

Under-the-Sea Mermaid Palace

photo credit: Smart & Final

• Festive Fruit Salad for Kids


PLAYMOBIL Large Hospital

Can’t find what you’re looking for on our website? Enter key words in the search bar and browse our articles.

Follow Us: San Diego Family SDFamily

San Diego Family Magazine sandiegofamilymagazine

6 • • November 2020

PJ Masks Transforming 2-in-1 Mobile HQ


The care you need, when you need it most. Choosing an exceptional health care network for you and your loved ones is more important than ever. Palomar Health is focused on the unique needs of our shared North County community and committed to providing the care you need, when you need it most.

Explore and enroll today @ | 760.849.1953

Discover the World of


Editorial Publisher/Editor in Chief Sharon Bay


“A Montessori Student is a Future Citizen of the World” According to Dr. Maria Montessori, children learn best in an environment that demonstrates love, trust, understanding, patience and consistency. Students excel academically while experiencing cooperation, respect, self-confidence and the joy of learning. Contact these local Montessori schools for more information.

North County Coastal

East County

CENTRAL MONTESSORI SCHOOL Toddler/Preschool/Kindergarten


Lic. #376700910

Encinitas, Cardiff, Carlsbad, La Costa

760-479-9889 ENCINITAS COUNTRY DAY SCHOOL Preschool/Elementary/Middle Lic. #372005943

Two Locations in Encinitas Encinitas


North County Inland COUNTRY MONTESSORI SCHOOL Preschool/Kindergarten/Elementary Lic # 372006093

12642 Monte Vista Road, Poway, CA 92064 Poway, Rancho Bernardo, 4SRanch, Scripps Ranch, Rancho Penasquitos


San Diego Central MARIA MONTESSORI SCHOOL Preschool/Elementary/Middle AMS Affiliated

4544 Pocahontas Ave., San Diego 92117 Serving all of San Diego County from our central location

Lic. #376600356

10435 Campo Rd., Spring Valley 91978 Rancho San Diego

619-442-2552 MONTESSORI CHILDREN’S HOUSE OF LEMON GROVE Toddler/Preschool Lic. #376614702

8121 Braddock Place, San Diego 92114 Lemon Grove


Calendar Editor Linda Bay Editorial/Administrative Assistant Adrienne Sigeti

Design Art Design/Web Design Rik Thiesfeld Cover photo: All Colors Photography

Editorial Guidelines Find editorial guidelines at (“Editorial” at the bottom of the home page). Submission does not guarantee publication. We reserve the right to edit all submissions.

Distribution Locations Pick up a free copy of this month’s issue at Albertsons, select Vons and CVS stores throughout the county.

San Diego Coastal PRESENTS



BETH MONTESSORI Infants/Toddler/Preschool/Kindergarten


Lic. # 376700496

8660 Gilman Dr., La Jolla 92037-2202 La Jolla

858-452-3030 MISSION BAY MONTESSORI ACADEMY Preschool/Elementary Lic. #372005444 • AMS Affiliated School

2640 Soderblom Ave., San Diego 92122 La Jolla, Pacific Beach, University City


858-270-9350 “Early childhood education is the key to the betterment of society.” - Maria Montessori

8 • • November 2020

Managing Editor Lisa Gipson

San Diego

Out & About

with Kids! Business

Engaging pediatric dental care in fun family-friendly offices! Bay Area Parent Family Favorite

Business Manager Larry Bay

2016, 2017, 2018, 2019

Hulafrog Most Loved Dentist 2018, 2019

Marketing Director Michele Hancock Accounting Circulation Linda Bay

San Diego 4074 Fairmount Avenue Suite B San Diego 92105 We Accept To schedule or for Denti-Cal more locations, call

(844) 707-KIDS 5437




Connect your business to families throughout San Diego County!





Tony Andrews 619-685-6977 • Point Loma, Pacific Beach, La Jolla, North County Coastal

San Diego Family 619-685-6970 • North County Inland (includes Scripps Ranch) East County, Clairemont, Linda Vista, Mission Valley North and Mira Mesa San Diego Family Magazine is published monthly by San Diego Family Magazine LLC. Copyright 2020. All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part without permission is prohibited. Opinions expressed by contributors are not necessarily the opinions of this publication.


For New Uninsured Patients. Not valid for patients with contracted insurance plans. Coupon may not be combined with any other offer. Must present coupon at visit.

Advertising/Marketing Representatives

Giovanni Baldan 619-685-6987 • South Bay, San Diego Downtown, Uptown


For New Uninsured Patients. Not valid for patients with contracted insurance plans. Coupon may not be combined with any other offer. Must present coupon at visit.


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Our San Diego

Publisher’s Letter


Feeling Thankful We have had a challenging time since March, but we have lots to be thankful for: •

First responders and healthcare workers who work endless hours as we learn more about COVID.

Our advertisers. You have continued to get your message out through Family Magazine. I know you had a choice —thank you for continuing to believe in us.

Our readers. Thank you for continuing to connect with us through our website, eNewsletters, social media and our print issue.

Our sponsors for our nonprofit, Special Needs Resource Foundation of San Diego.

Volunteers who help with our drive-thru events.

Partnerships with toy companies who help us give toys to nonprofit organizations such as Becky’s House, San Diego Regional Center and many more. We do our best to give to organizations that don’t get toys from the big guys.

And, of course, I am really grateful to my staff. They have been working hard from their homes to help San Diego families make the best of these times.

We still need to be careful, especially families that have preexisting health concerns. And we need to move forward to get businesses open. Enjoy your family and friends during this Thanksgiving season.

We asked Family Magazine staff members to complete this sentence: Thanksgiving is not complete without… Emily Dolton resource specialist … my son playing jazz at House of Blues for their annual feed-the-homeless event. And, of course, marathoning Peanuts holiday videos and putting up our tree.

Tony Andrews marketing representative … family being together, a fire in the fireplace, football on TV and lots of delicious food made from passed down family recipes!

Michele Hancock marketing director Our traditions help create family memories. For instance, every Thanksgiving the kids are excited to bring out our turkey placemats, a treasured gift. Main Office: 1475 Sixth Avenue, Fifth Floor, San Diego, CA 92101 Phone: 619-685-6970 Fax: 619-685-6978 Email: Mission Statement To enhance the quality of life for San Diego County families by providing information and resources that support the importance and pleasure of parenting.

10 • • November 2020

Giovanni Baldan marketing representative Absolutely would have to be PIES!! And watching the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade (welcoming Santa) while the turkey is roasting.

397 E Street Chula Vista, CA 91910 2452 Fenton St. Ste 104 Chula Vista, CA 91914 555 S Rancho Santa Fe Rd San Marcos, CA 92078


1310 Third Ave Ste A1 Chula Vista, CA 91911

Fall Season Word Search

Let’s Do This Together! Keep 6 Ft Distance

Wear A Mask

Wash your Hands Grateful Family Turkey Autumn

Leaves Cranberry Thanksgiving Gravy

Cover your cough & sneeze

Clean and Disinfect

Pumpkin Pie Fall Gather November

Children’s Primary Dental wishes you a happy and safe school year! Ask about our free hand sanitizer at your next appointment!

November 2020 • •


Short & Sweet

Lisa Gipson

Give Your Little Ones a Healthy Start

Books for Kids: Editor’s Picks

Have questions or concerns about baby’s growth and development? Don’t delay in having those questions answered! California Early Start is a federally funded program that provides free assessments to infants and toddlers and, if needed, important therapeutic services (free to eligible families) early enough to make a huge impact in a child’s development. For information about the Early Start program, call San Diego Regional Center at 858-496-4318 or Exceptional Family Resource Center (EFRC) at 619-594-7416.

This year marks the 100th anniversary of the 19th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution (women’s right to vote). It took almost a year for it to become a law in 36 states, but in 1920 women were able to start voting in the U.S. Artist Marilyn Artus commemorated this important milestone by collaborating with artists from around the country to create a huge flag—one stripe from each of the participating states. The flag was sewn as a thank you, and to encourage women to participate in their right to vote. Learn more at

Free Activity Book Teaches Kids About Climate The City of San Diego unveiled a new climate-focused activity book to inspire creativity and teach kids about the environment. It is available to pick up (free) at 24 San Diego City Libraries (must request from the librarian) or can be downloaded in English or Spanish on the City’s website. Find pick-up locations at or learn more and download the book at climate-action-plan under the “Learn” tab.

12 • • November 2020

Take a moment to slow down and practice gratitude with Choose Joy, a beautiful coloring book featuring 45 original designs that highlight inspirational quotes from hymns, authors (such as Maya Angelou, Martin Luther King, Jr., and Bob Goff) or Scripture. Choose Joy is part of Ink & Willow, a new line of gift books from the WaterBrook imprint of Random House. Third grader Mindy Kim is running for class president on a platform of kindness, friendship and snacks. But does she have what it takes to win the race? Mindy Kim, Class President by Lyla Lee is about having courage to run and what makes a strong class leader. Mindy wins everyone’s hearts, though the end may be surprising.

Peyton is particular (not to be confused with picky). She likes to try new things, but doesn’t like foods that are green, orange, red, gooey, sticky, flaky, chunky or lumpy. Families with children who are “particular” in their eating habits will love Peyton Picks the Perfect Pie by Jack Bishop, a heartwarming story from America’s Test Kitchen that celebrates food and family (and includes a recipe for Best-Ever Apple Pie!). Visit our online book round-ups for more suggestions:

The 2020-21 San Diego County Teachers of the Year

30th Annual

"COX PRESENTS: A SALUTE TO TEACHERS” Brought to you by San Diego County Credit Union Tune in to celebrate the 2020-21 San Diego County Teachers of the Year and all 26,000 county public school teachers.

Saturday, November 21 | 7 p.m. YurView California (Cox Channels 4 and 1004)

Arah Allard Del Mar Hills Elementary School, Del Mar Union School District

Christine Hill Ramona High School, Ramona Unified School District Jose Melo Valley Center Middle School, Valley Center-Pauma Unified School District Paula Richardson Wilson Middle School, San Diego Unified School District Jay Tweet El Capitan High School, Grossmont Union High School District


Not Easy WE’RE IN IT TOGETHER! parenting/baby

New digital issue!

Celebrating 50 years

Look out for your upcoming Anniversary Party celebration-invitation!

“A learning environment that balances the physical, emotional, cognitive, creative, social & emotional needs of your child.” Scheduling Tours for the 2020-2021 School Year

Lic.# 376600498

From baby bump to toddler time, find ideas, answers and tips from local moms who care about you.

Visit our website


13692 Mango Drive, Del Mar

Leaders in Early Childhood Education Since 1970

November 2020 • •


Parenting with Purpose

Jody Lee Cates

RAISING HOPE Even in Turbulent Times

Families navigating the

challenges of 2020 need hope now more than ever. Hope that inspires belief in a better future and empowers action to make that future happen. Are you ready for some good news? It is possible to grow hope that reaches beyond optimism and wishful thinking and helps your family thrive. “Hope is measurable and malleable,” says Casey Gwinn, president of Alliance for HOPE International and co-author of Hope Rising: How the Science of Hope Can Change Your Life. “Whether you consider yourself an optimist or a pessimist, there are practical ways to increase hope, and the more these strategies are practiced, the stronger hope grows.”

Encourage agency. Armed with a plan for contingencies, a sense of agency and self-confidence sparks willpower, determination and the belief that “we’ve got this!”

Growing Hope in Parents Hope is contagious, but it’s not possible to share what you don’t have, so start by examining your own level of hopefulness. Think about how to give it a boost to begin cultivating more hope in your family. Hope-filled people are futurefocused, so if many or most of your conversations revolve around how good things once were or how bad things are now, it’s time to get serious about making a shift. Develop the practice of asking yourself, “If I can no longer do that,

Research pioneer Charles R. Snyder, Ph.D., identified three things that work together to raise hopefulness:

Identify pathways. Mapping out the steps necessary to reach goals increases belief and confidence to turn dreams into reality. Identifying several different pathways encourages proactive problem-solving if and when obstacles or challenges block progress. Taking the first step activates motivation and builds momentum.

14 • • November 2020

Social support is essential, especially in a time of social distancing. “Our research shows that just being a part of a group of people that care about each other, that are verbalizing who they want to be, what they want to do, both individually and together is a powerful multiplier of hope,” says Gwinn. Escondido mom Perri Savidge agrees. “It’s hard being a parent of two young children and looking around at what’s going on in the world. But talking about the goals we have for our kids, about their schooling and what we eventually want for them definitely raises my hope.”

Raising Hopeful Children Imagination is at the heart of growing hope in children. “It’s pretty easy to understand the fundamental principle that you can’t be something if you can’t imagine it first,” Gwinn says.

Three Keys to Unlocking More Hope

Set goals. Hopeful people have goals they’re working toward and feel excited about. Talking about goals makes the future vision come alive. Set meaningful goals and share the details with someone who will encourage you.

what can I do instead?” Think ahead to what is coming up. Even small things like a trip to the dog park, a drive in the mountains or a walk along the coast can shift your focus from the past to the future, and begin to grow hope.

Goodnight, Moonbright

A sweet story that follows the moon across many countries as it says goodnight to the animals and asks where they saw hope in their day. This book is a collaboration between Casey Gwinn of Alliance for Hope International and Shari Lyon, a writer who often works with San Diego Zoo Global.

Develop imagination by tapping into your child’s love of playing, pretending and reading. Children’s stories are filled with characters who must overcome challenges or solve dilemmas to reach their goals in imaginative ways. Ask kids to imagine themselves in the hero’s shoes. What would they do the same or differently? How might the story change if it happened in a different time and place? “We help children understand hope by explaining it as believing in yourself, believing in others and believing in your dreams,” says Gwinn who recommends asking kids, “Where did you see hope today?”

If you’re feeling hopeless or are having a mental health crisis, call your doctor or San Diego’s Access and Crisis Line to speak with a trained counselor. The toll-free number 1-888-724-7240 is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Jewish Montessori Preschool in La Jolla

“It’s a simple question that makes hope real for kids,” Gwinn explains. “Even very young children can share how they believed in themselves, cheered for a friend or learned something new that day.

Hope for the Future Hope-filled people are futurefocused, goal-oriented and feel empowered to make their dreams a reality. By taking steps toward growing hope, parents and families can create a brighter view of the future no matter the circumstances. “Thinking about my kids’ future does give me hope,” says Savidge. “Helping my kids know and understand that they have agency over their own lives is extremely important to me. Teaching our children how to foster that and how they can help themselves and help others is very hopeful.” Find a variety of worksheets and resources to measure your current level of hope and practical ways to increase it at www. v Jody Lee Cates is a local mom and award-winning writer who blogs about healthy relationships at

• Children ages 9 months to 6 years • Proven Montessori Method and Philosophy • Learning through hands-on experience • Integrated secular and Judaic curriculum • Bilingual Program • Skilled teachers, trained in early childhood development • Secured, state-of-the-art facilities

Classes are filling up quickly! For more information, contact us at

(858) 452-3030

or Beth Montessori adheres to the principles of Association Montessori International (AMI)

8660 Gilman Drive, La Jolla, CA 92037

Fax (858) 777-9199

Pick up

your FREE copy at

November 2020 • •


Anne Malinoski

San Diego MOMpreneurs

Women Who Mean Business These three incredible MOMpreneurs represent everything we love about November, a month filled with gratitude, warmth and reflection. Each of these women works hard in her own way to build a better world for others. We’re thankful for their leadership.

Michelle Penczak CEO, Squared Away

Michelle Penczak’s road to

entrepreneurship began with her first change of station as a newlywed Marine spouse. Filled with love and optimism, she and husband Sean made their way to a new life in Jacksonville, NC. While he settled in at Camp Lejeune, she set up job interviews. Penczak was confident that a strong work ethic and solid resume would land her a position quickly, but even the most promising opportunities failed to pan out. So, she prepped for another round of interviews. And another.

16 • • November 2020

Just for fun: What’s your favorite holiday tradition? My birthday is on Christmas Eve and my boys think it’s super fun! The entire month we decorate, watch Christmas movies and explore lights. And we always leave a piece of birthday cake for Santa. – Michelle Penczak, Squared Away

Soon, Penczak arrived at a painful realization: She had been rejected 30 times due to her status as a military spouse. “They didn’t come right out and say it, but it was more than implied,” says Penczak. “The interview would go so well and then they would ask ‘What brought you to Jacksonville?’ As soon as I said my husband was a V-22 pilot, the tone of the interview changed from excitement to ‘Thanks for taking the time to meet with us.’ I was never offered a job.” That’s when she moved her search online. Thanks to a keen eye for detail, she found fulfilling work as a virtual assistant and quickly advanced to a management position. By 2015, she was thriving professionally, even while juggling a deployment and the first months of pregnancy. But that summer, her company shuttered unexpectedly, leaving Penczak and 400 co-workers jobless overnight. Moving quickly to retain clients, Penczak launched an independent contracting business. It was incredibly hard work and she took only two weeks’ maternity leave after the birth of her son. But soon she was thriving again. When her husband received orders to Hawaii (six time zones from her client base), she refused to give up what she’d built. Without disclosing the move to clients, she awoke early each day to keep east coast hours. Penczak was determined to advance herself professionally—and vowed to bring fellow military spouses up with her. When it was time to grow her virtual assisting business, she invited spouses to join the team. Today, Squared Away employs 120 military spouses worldwide from Japan to Germany and Hawaii to Puerto Rico. Clients love that Squared Away supports military families through meaningful spouse employment. They also love how well their virtual assistants push them to meet their goals. “Our assistants hold clients accountable to their priorities and are always thinking two steps ahead,” says Penczak. “We strive to be proactive rather than reactive so that our clients are getting the best remote support possible.” Penczak lives with her husband and two sons in Scripps Ranch (for now!) where the boys, ages 4 and 1, keep her on her toes. Her advice to parent entrepreneurs is to always make time for family. “The work will always need to get done, but they only grow up once,” she says. “Enjoy the time with them, maybe stay up later to work, but don’t miss out on the snuggles and silliness.” Learn more at IG: @awaysquared FB: @squaredawayva

Just for fun: What’s your favorite holiday tradition? I have celebrated New Year’s Eve with the same group of friends for 30 years. The celebration dinner lasts for hours as we reflect on highs, lows and lessons learned from the year. With full bellies and happy hearts, we move on to a “letting go ceremony” that consists of writing down things that no longer serve us, burning the list, and lighting a candle to “shine the light” on our intentions for the new year. – Jill McManigal, Kids for Peace

Jill McManigal Co-Founder and Executive Director, Kids for Peace

In the wake of Sept. 11, Jill McManigal felt drawn to

action. The Carlsbad mom of two and former elementary teacher believed that love and kindness could overcome the darkness and fear looming over the world at that time. She returned to her hero Gandhi’s words, “To achieve lasting peace, we must begin with the children.” That quote was the push she needed. “I knew that in order to create a world that is safe, respectful, loving and kind, providing a platform for kids to put their innate compassion into action was the way forward,” says McManigal. Kids for Peace launched The Peace Pledge Program in 2006. Since then, it has grown to include 150 chapters in 60 countries. Each group meets regularly to put the organization’s pledge into action—choosing projects that are personally meaningful and culturally relevant. Participants become peacebuilders while working to serve their communities, cultivate global friendships and care for the planet. “Kids for Peace is fueled by the energy, optimism, curiosity and kindness of kids,” says McManigal. “Kids don’t just talk about the world they want to live in, they actively create it.”

Another Kids for Peace initiative is The Great Kindness Challenge, which started in three Carlsbad schools and has grown to engage over 15 million students in more than 28,000 schools in 115 countries. With the help of the organization’s kindness checklist, students performed half a billion acts of kindness in January 2020. These were small but powerful actions like sitting with new friends at lunch, helping their custodians or stepping up for classmates in need. The Great Kindness Challenge has become so popular, Kids for Peace launched a Family Edition Checklist to keep the kindness flowing at home. Download the free checklist at For McManigal, the best part of the journey is witnessing what kids have accomplished. “Through the power of their collective action, our youth have raised funds to build new schools in Kenya and Pakistan, playgrounds in hurricane-affected areas including Puerto Rico, a health clinic in Liberia and soon a school and friendship center in Tijuana, Mexico,” she says. “It’s amazing what kids can do when they put their minds to it!” McManigal’s kids (ages 19 & 22) are founding members of Kids for Peace. Learn about how your kids can continue the work her family started (such as in Club Kids for Peace virtual afterschool program) on their website. McManigal’s advice to parents who dream of starting a nonprofit: keep it simple! “Follow your heart, start small,” she says. “Surround yourself with great people, be unapologetically optimistic, always tell the truth, and never lose sight of your mission.” Learn more at IG: @kidsforpeace FB: @kidsforpeace and @thegreatkindnesschallenge

Kids for Peace Pledge I pledge to use my words to speak in a kind way. I pledge to help others as I go throughout my day. I pledge to care for our earth with my healing heart and hands. I pledge to respect people in each and every land. I pledge to join together as we unite the big and small. I pledge to do my part to create PEACE for one and all.

November 2020 • •


Just for fun: What’s your favorite holiday tradition? My best friend hosts an annual ornament party. It’s one of the few times when all my girlfriends are able to get together to catch up, while sharing unique and memorable ornaments. I also love cooking with my boys. It’s one of the reasons I make our gingerbread dough available to bake in your own kitchen. It has that rich fragrance that just feels like the holidays. – Maya Madsen, Maya’s Cookies

Maya Madsen Founder and Owner, Maya’s Cookies

This month, Maya’s Cookies celebrates five years in business. The vegan cookie bakery has had a banner year, surpassing 20,000 online sales and earning the title of Best Black-Owned Bakery by Black San Diego Magazine. Owner and Scripps Ranch resident Maya Madsen is a testament to the power of resilience. Having struggled with a difficult upbringing as a foster child, she leaned into the love and guidance of her Catholic school community. When she met her husband and they started a family, healthy living was a top priority as she worked to stay focused and positive. She became a fitness model and trainer, adopting a vegan diet to complement her health journey. But she couldn’t find gourmet vegan treats to satisfy her sweet tooth. Over the years, Madsen developed recipes that became favorites at neighborhood and school functions. When her two eldest sons started college, she was ready to launch the business as she needed extra income to supplement work as a spin instructor. “It was an unusual transition to go from being a fitness instructor to a cookie baker,” says Madsen, “but my love for

18 • • November 2020

healthy living never changed and baking vegan goods helped me share the benefits of eating whole plant-based foods— treats included!” The business lifted the family in more ways than one: it helped with college tuition payments, but Madsen was even more thrilled that her three sons were eager to help. They loved watching the business grow. “It became a way for us to bond and build something together as a family,” says Madsen. Thanks to her success, Madsen has been able to achieve another goal—helping others. She started a roundtable for plant-based Black entrepreneurs to share resources and build community as they grow their businesses. She has also launched collaborations to fundraise for underserved communities. Maya’s cookies are extra special—crisp and sweet on the outside, chewy and butter-like on the inside. The best ones are loaded with chunks of chocolate, toffee or nuts. It really is hard to believe they’re vegan! Order online for home delivery or check the website for upcoming farmers markets. Glutenfree options available. Maya is glad she launched the bakery (located in Mission Valley) as her sons entered adulthood. Some days, she says, the business requires as much time and energy as another child. Her advice to parents considering entrepreneurship: “Be sure you have enough room in your life for a business-baby!” v Learn more at IG and FB: @mayascookiessandiego Anne Malinoski is an award-winning writer who lives in Santee with her husband and two sons.



5075 Ruffin Rd. Ste. A, San Diego, CA 92123 • Contact: (858) 633-2950 •


Michele/Nov 2020


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y Family Christmas Tree Farm


• Select and cut your own Monterey Pine! • Fresh cut Noble, Douglas and Grand Fir trees! • Tree delivery and online orders available! • Your whole family will love Family Christmas Tree Farm!


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Malia Jacobson

Be a Good Neighbor

How to help kids connect to their community

Let’s Roll (ages 0–5) Neighborhoods—and connections within local communities—have never mattered more. Research shows that where children live, play and attend school impacts everything from how much they exercise to their grades. Studies also show that “social embeddedness,” or strong ties to social and cultural relationships within the neighborhood, can boost kids’ social, emotional and academic outcomes. As families are deciding to stay closer to home, neighborhoods provide important opportunities for socialization, connection and play. Like growing a garden, cultivating a richly connected neighborhood takes time and effort, but families can reap rewards for years. Here’s how to create social connectedness in your corner of the world.

20 • • November 2020

Creating a connected community starts with getting to know your neighborhood and your neighbors, says Catherine Bagwell, professor of psychology at Oxford College of Emory University. “One of the most important ways to foster relationships with neighbors is to create opportunities for children to have frequent, positive contact and interactions with them,” she says. Often, this simply means playing outdoors, from a driveway game of hopscotch to a backyard soccer scrimmage. Help kids get to know their area by creating a scavenger hunt that includes specific neighborhood landmarks, and ask other kids on the block to participate. For a safe, socially distanced outdoor activity for little ones, create a regular weekend “Roll and Stroll” or “Wagons and Wheels” playdate to bring kids together outside.

Safe Spots (ages 6–12) Remember long hours spent roaming your childhood neighborhood? Many adults do, but kids today don’t get nearly as much unsupervised outdoor time as their parents did, mainly due to safety concerns. When neighborhoods are viewed as less safe, kids spend more time inside, get less exercise, and are less connected to their communities, according to research. Per Bright Horizons Family Solutions, a childcare provider with locations across the country, helping kids feel safer in their community fosters a healthier, more balanced perspective to counteract the sometimes-scary world depicted by news reports. Families concerned about neighborhood safety can establish guidelines for outdoor play (such as

checking in with parents every hour or always coming home by nightfall) and find community centers where kids can play with peers in a more supervised setting. Devices like the GizmoWatch 2 and AngelSense provide GPS tracking to give parents peace of mind while kids enjoy “free range” neighborhood play.

Grass Roots (ages 13–18) By the teen years, kids may be too involved in school and extracurricular pursuits to spend time on unstructured, run-around-the-neighborhood play. But there are many benefits for teens to foster community connections, including (but not limited to) increasing independence, social skills and earning power. For entrepreneurial teens, or any kids motivated by earning extra cash, a quick look around can help teens determine what type of business might flourish in their neighborhood—are there lawns in need of care? Exhausted parents who need a break from virtual learning? Professionals who travel and need pet or house-sitting? For philanthropic teens, or those who need to fulfill volunteer hours for school, they can take the same type of “inventory” of their neighborhood—or check with their local church or town council. Are there senior citizens who need assistance with running errands? Meal deliveries needed for homebound neighbors? Local food banks that need to be restocked? Handing out business cards or flyers around the neighborhood helps teens make face-to-face connections with people in their area. Meeting neighbors, helping people or earning money are immediate benefits, but learning about neighborhood needs and figuring out how to fill them is an exercise with long-term value. Malia Jacobson is a nationally published journalist. Find ideas on how to support people in your neighborhood by turning to page 22 and visiting at things-to-do/donations-volunteers-andlocal-fundraisers. November 2020 • •


Lisa Gipson

Giving Thanks,

Volunteering and All That Stuff(ing) Many families are likely feeling out of sorts with their schedules and emotions right now, at a time when they are typically celebrating fall and looking forward to the holiday season. Expressing gratitude is always in style (and it does wonders to keep attitudes in check). Make giving thanks, volunteering “and all that stuff” a priority for your family, especially this month.

Meaningful Ways to Help Others Not all the usual volunteer opportunities are available this year, but there are many people who need help and support! Plus, helping others is a healthy practice of taking the focus off ourselves, so everyone benefits. Here are meaningful ways families can bless others this season: •

Write letters to family members who can’t travel this holiday season.

Make and deliver treats to first responders or healthcare workers.

Run errands for an elderly neighbor.

Are you a crafty family? Make enrichment items for animals at the San Diego Humane Society. Visit volunteer/youth-service.html for a list of needs and instructions.

Make dinner for a new family in your neighborhood.

Organize a supply drive for a group in need, such as Casa de Amparo, whose mission is to treat and prevent child abuse and neglect through a range of services. Find a list of pressing needs (and youth requests) for their residents at things-to-do/donations-volunteers-and-local-fundraisers.

Collect needed items for the animals at Helen Woodward Animal Center. Find their wish list at wish-list.

Make a Thankful Jar Create a thankful jar in preparation for Thanksgiving dinner. Give each guest one or more paper slips or paper leaves; have them write what they are grateful for and add it to the jar. Even the littlest guests can participate in this wonderful “ritual” and family tradition. At the end of the meal, pull each one out and take turns reading them to the group. As an alternative, create a thankful jar just for your family and add something to it each day. Read them aloud on Thanksgiving Day. Or, start a gratitude journal. Simply listing things you’re grateful for is a healthy reset for mind and attitude. Children who can’t write can make a collage, displaying items they’re thankful for.

22 • • November 2020

Visit to find these articles, which offer additional ideas on how to cultivate an attitude of gratitude: •

How to Inspire Thankfulness in Kids

24 Ways to Give Thanks

Once you’ve taken time to reflect on your blessings, indulge in one of these fall treats from The Seaside Baker. Turn to page 31 for one more dessert that will wow your Thanksgiving guests!

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Devilfish Bodyboard Race Pack 4 $44; 4+ These bodyboards are perfect for San Diego’s year-round temperate weather! Use them for swimming at a pool, riding small waves at the beach, and cruising down a Slip ‘n’ Slide. More durable than regular inflatables. “Love that it’s a 4-pack so there is one for [everyone in the] family,” says mom Lauren.


Announcing Part One of this season’s round-up of kid-tested, parent-approved toys. To make it even more exciting, we’re giving some away! Turn to page 6 for details on how to enter. Find our complete list of toys, games, books and more at and be sure to pick up the December issue for Part Two.

Scrabble Slam $6.95; 8+ A card game version of Scrabble, but faster and easier. Change words one letter at a time (such as “bake” to “bike”) using cards in your hand. “This game is perfect for camping or RV travel,” says mom Emily. “It also makes a great stocking stuffer.”

Find more great games for Family Game Night at

see p. 6

Playmobil Large Hospital $149.99; 4+ Two-story hospital with elevator comes with tons of features and accessories for hours of imaginative play. “This toy is amazing!” says mom Karen. “There are so many neat things to keep my daughter (age 6) occupied and engaged.”

24 • • November 2020

see p. 6

Under-the-Sea Mermaid Palace $49.99; 3+ An enchanting sea palace that has “working” parts such as a clamshell bed, palace gate and swing. Also includes three mermaids that can sit or stand! Bill Nye’s VR Science Kit $59.99; 8+ Watch Bill Nye “The Science Guy” come alive (via augmented reality) to introduce scientific lessons and principles like oxidation, chemical reactions and more! This kit includes over 30 hands-on experiments, VR goggles and a book. Teleport to Bill’s lab using your smart device with the goggles.

Star Wars The Child Plush $12.99; 3+ Inspired by the popular Disney+ series, this 8” plush toy with life-like glass eyes is known as The Child. “My son loves The Mandalorian and went crazy for “Baby Yoda,” says mom Julie. “It’s perfect for any Star Wars fan.”

Activity Pop-Up Tents $19.99-$39.99; 36 mos. & up Give kids their own space to play, read or hang out! Simply pop up to use; fold flat to put away. Themes available from Sunny Days Entertainment: Thomas the Tank Engine, Wonder Woman, ScoobyDoo, Barbie Dream Camper, Princess and Batmobile.

see p. 6

Scoot Hands-Free Hover Drone Duo Set $49.99; 8+ Turn any room into an interactive playground! “This super cool toy comes in a set of two, so each of the kids can use one,” says Tom, dad to 12-year-old twins. “You control the motion with your hands and it’s very easy to do.”

Honeybake Wooden Tea Set $39.95; 3+ Little ones love hosting imaginary tea parties with this beautiful tea set. Includes cups and saucers, teapot, teabag, spoon, biscuits and tea tray. Made from sustainable solid wood.

PJ Masks 2-in-1 Transforming Mobile HQ $79.99; 3+ This impressive play set stands three feet tall and features five levels, each with a drop-down ramp. “This is the BIG present for under the tree,” says mom Viri. “My son lost his marbles when we opened it! He loves the PJ Masks characters, but it’s the size and playability he likes most.”

Silly Skaters Unicorn Inflatable Ride-On $39 ; 1+ Little ones can ride or push this adorable unicorn, which features motion-activated, light-up skates. Air pump included.

Hide & Seek Paint Pour Rocks $13.99; 6+ Paint pouring is a trending technique that is amazing on rocks! “We painted a lot of rocks during quarantine,” says mom Maureen. “This set comes with 10 perfectly sized rocks, stickers and paint. It’s nice to have a kit with everything needed. The paint and stickers have not faded or fallen off after being outside for a week.”

Loog Mini Guitar $79; 3+ Don’t be fooled by the small size—it sounds like a classical guitar! Includes flashcards and an app that helps kids learn songs on the first day. Only three strings make the learning process faster and easier. Available in six colors. November 2020 • •



Still looking for last month’s events? Check out the digital edition of our October issue at

Calendar of Events

Fleet Week San Diego. Honor and celebrate the men and women of the military through public events that include a golf tournament, boat parade, military family drive-in event, car show, virtual family fun run and more. Nov. 9 through Nov. 15. Broadway Pier, downtown. Visit for full schedule of events.

Nov. 1 Haunted Trail at Petco Park. A socially distanced one-way Halloween-themed pumpkin patch in Gallagher Square. Visit various themed booths, collect candy and toys and partake in the spooky festivities. Today, 4–8:30 pm. $20-$25. Visit website to select your pre-designated time slot. Petco Park, 100 Park Blvd. SeaWorld’s Spooktacular. Spooky surprises for kids, like a pumpkin scavenger hunt, a candy trail, cookie decorating

26 • • November 2020

and a Spooktacular dance party. Today, visit website for hours and prices. Online reservations required. 500 Sea World Dr., San Diego. Dinner & a Movie on the Bay. Experience a spectacular evening with great food including popcorn and an entrée of your choice, fantastic views and the movie, “Nightmare Before Christmas.” Tonight, 6–9 pm. Nov. 5, “Jurassic Park;” Nov. 8, “Frozen 2;” Nov. 15, “Raiders of the Lost Ark;” Nov. 22, “Black Panther.” Visit website for full schedule. $35–$48; 3 & under free. Pier 1 Hornblower

Landing, 1800 N Harbor Dr., downtown. FREE Veterans at SeaWorld. Through the Waves of Honor program, SeaWorld is honoring the men and women that have served in our armed forces. Free admission for former military personnel and up to three guests. Purchase tickets online through Nov. 15. Visit website for details. 500 SeaWorld Dr. Boo at the Zoo. Have some Halloween fun with a few spooky and not-so-spooky animals. Nocturnal animals will be out and active. Be sure to wear your favorite

costume. Today, 4:30 & 5 pm. Adults, $35; under 12, $20. Wild Wonders, 5712 Via Montellano, Bonsall. SEA LIFE Aquarium. The aquarium is offering $10 admission for kids and their families to explore sharks, rays, tropical fish and other sea animals in the twostory aquarium. Visit website for dates and times. One LEGOLAND Dr., Carlsbad. Pumpkins and Ponies at Sweetwater Farms. Enjoy the farm with your family. Includes farm animals, pony rides, hayride, and horseshoe painting. Geared for kids 7 & under. Today, 11 am–4 pm. $7–$15. All ticket sales online, no ticket sales at the gate. 3051 Equitation Ln., Bonita.

Nov. 4 VIRTUAL The Sky Tonight: Comets and Meteor Showers. Every year in November the Leonid meteor shower occurs. What is a meteor shower? How do we know when one will occur? And how are meteor showers related to comets? Tonight, 7–8 pm. $5–$20. To register, visit the Fleet Science Center at

Dive in from home!

Virtual After School Series Ocean educators will build upon kid’s curiosity as we explore ocean science in interactive and fun ways. The next 6-part series for grades K-8 kicks off January 25.

Registration opens 11/30!

2020 SDJT Virtual Thxgvg Camp ad Family Mag r1.pdf



1:53 PM

VIRTUAL Artists & Astronomers. Dive into the science of the solar system, drawing inspiration from all things outer space. Create textured moon paintings, intergalactic magnets, miniature planetary nightlights, and more. Program materials included and can be picked up. Today, Nov. 11, 18 & Dec. 2, 3–4 pm. For grades 2–5. $75. To register, visit the San Diego Air & Space Museum at

Nov. 6


M Haunted Corn Maze “Field of Screams.” The perfect thrilling experience Y guaranteed to get your heart thumping. For CM teenagers and adults. Today & tomorrow, 7–10:30 pm. $25. Carlsbad StrawberryMY Fields at Cannon Rd. & Interstate 5. CY CMY

VIRTUAL FREE ChIMES Music Class. San K Diego Youth Symphony invites children ages 0-5 and their caregivers to sing, dance and play in this interactive class. ChIMES (Childhood Introduction to Music Education, with Smiles) introduces young children to the building blocks of music and ensemble playing with singing, movement, rhythm and hands-on instrument activities. Today, 4:30–5 pm. Pre-registration is required at

N OV 2 3 - 2 5, 2 0 2 0 Visit or Call 619-239-1311, ext 222 November 2020 • •


Calendar • November Nov. 7

Nov. 11

Nov. 15

FREE East County Cruisers Car Show & Toy Drive. Complete your act of kindness for the day by bringing a new, unwrapped toy to benefit local military and civilian families. 9 am–2 pm. Bates Nut Farm, 15954 Woods Valley Rd., Valley Center. For more information, or to register your car for the show, visit

Veterans Day

VIRTUAL Christmas in the Village. A unique shopping experience with handmade artisan products, art objects and holiday delights. Today through Dec. 15.

Weekend Train Rides. All aboard for vintage train rides with locomotives and cars from the early 20th century. Nov. 7–8, 14–15, 21–22, 28–29; 11am, 1:30 & 3 pm. For tickets, visit website. Campo Railroad Park & Museum, 750 Depot St.

FREE Active Duty Military and Family at SeaWorld. Through the Waves of Honor program, SeaWorld is honoring the men and women of our armed forces. Free admission for military personnel and up to three direct dependents. Offer is available online and for visitation through Dec. 31. Visit for details. 500 SeaWorld Dr.

VIRTUAL Wake Up with Wildlife: All About Raptors. Discover how to tell the difference between hawks, falcons, owls and vultures and meet some of Project Wildlife’s raptor animal ambassadors. Today, 9:30–11 am. $5. To register, visit the San Diego Humane Society at ArtWalk @ Liberty Station. Purchase artwork from more than 150 local, national and international artists who have been creating stunning pieces of work during quarantine. Today & tomorrow, 10 am–5 pm. $5; 16 & under free. 2641 Truxton Road and Legacy Plaza and Luce Ct. at 2648 Dewey Rd. Tickets available at VIRTUAL FREE BLOOM. This event is perfect for all new and expecting mamas with an incredible lineup of speakers, breakout sessions and a virtual area for businesses. Today, 10 am–1 pm. To register, visit

Nov. 9 Fleet Week San Diego. See pullout p. 26.

Nov. 10 VIRTUAL Paws and Paperbacks. Helps children ages 6-11 develop compassionate relationships with animals by providing an opportunity for both kids and animals to spend time together in a calm and respectful environment. Children will read to animals over Zoom. Today, 4:30–5:30 pm. $10. To register, visit the San Diego Humane Society at

28 • • November 2020

Visit the USS Midway Museum, a historic aircraft carrier with more than 60 exhibits, more than 30 restored aircraft and family-friendly activities. Open daily, 10 am-5 pm. Visit website for admission. 910 N. Harbor Dr., downtown San Diego.

Nov. 12 Paws & Paperbacks. Children can practice their reading skills in a fun and non-judgmental atmosphere while giving our ambassador animals the chance to get exercise and socialization. For ages 6–11. Today, 4:30–5:30 pm. $10. Reservations required. San Diego Humane Society, 5500 Gaines St.

Nov. 14 VIRTUAL 2020 Virtual O’side Turkey Trot. Run or walk your chosen distance anywhere and anytime between today and Nov. 29th and post your results and photos online. $5 goes to your charity of choice. $28–$40. Register at FREE Second Saturdays at the Southern California Railway Museum. Challenge your friends and family on a series of Hopscotch courses. Explore the grounds and find some unique selfie opportunities with a photo scavenger hunt. Visit website for hours and train rides. 2201 S. “A” St., Perris. Kids in the Garden: Cotton and Nature Crafts. Learn about cotton and how it grows, followed by a creative session of nature crafts. Today, 10-11 am. $5. Pre-registration required at Alta Vista Botanical Gardens, 1270 Vale Terrace Dr. Vista. Weekend Train Rides. See Nov. 7.

Dinner & a Movie on the Bay. See Nov. 1.

Nov. 18 Reading with Animals. Struggling readers can read aloud to a nonjudgmental crowd: animals. Grab a book from home and get ready to interact with and read to some super cute critters. For grades 1–5. Today, 5 pm. $10. Helen Woodward Animal Center, 6461 El Apajo, Rancho Santa Fe.

Nov. 19 VIRTUAL FREE Family Arts & Literacy Night: “The Chaplin Show.” Tune in to this Charlie Chaplin inspired event hosted by Jerry Hager. Tonight, 6:30 pm. Visit the Salvation Army Kroc Center website to register at

Nov. 20 Pet Pals. Each month focuses on a different animal or animal-related topic and includes a lesson, activity, and animal interaction geared towards the theme of the month. For ages 6–11. Today, 4:30– 5:30 pm. $10. Registration required. San Diego Humane Society, 5500 Gaines St.

Nov. 21 VIRTUAL Growing Food Wildstyle. Discover the unlikely critters that help us grow our crops and food. Today, 6–6:45 pm. $20. To register, visit Weekend Train Rides. See Nov. 7.

Nov. 23 Thanksgiving break camps start at San Diego Junior Theatre and Helen Woodward Animal Center today! Turn to p. 27 and p. 29 to learn more.

Nov. 25 VIRTUAL FREE San Diego Dixieland Jazz Fest. This year, enjoy some great jazz music live performances streaming

Tony/Nov 2020/cr


experience HANDS-ON Animal Interactions! Helen Woodward Animal Center’s

ThanksGiVing November 23 – 25

Fun for the whole family!

December 4, 5, 6, 11, 12, & 13

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We’ve reintroduced

TRYENATARY COMPLIM CLASS! Specifically for students aged 7-11, this class focuses on the creation, magic and collaboration of comics! Spots are limited so email us today to hold a spot!



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San Diego’s MAP of


Coming in December: The county’s most comprehensive list of holiday lights and glittering festivities.

Building a Model Railroad is a videobased program that takes you and a child you love on a step-by-step, hands-on journey through the basics of constructing a scale model railroad, from painting to plastering to laying track. Most materials are included in the price and shipped to you. It’s a fun and creative at-home activity designed for kids 5 and up!


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November 2020 • •



Calendar • November directly to you, wherever you are. Tonight through Nov. 29. For band line-up and schedule, visit

Nov. 26 Thanksgiving Day Thanksgiving Champagne Brunch Cruise. Celebrate a heartwarming holiday with your family in a uniquely San Diego way, complete with all the holiday trimmings. Today, 11:30 am. Adults, $79; ages 4–12, $47.50; 3 & under free. Pier 1 Hornblower Landing, 1800 N Harbor Dr, downtown. VIRTUAL Father Joe’s Villages Thanksgiving Day 5K. Different race, same impact: to provide crucial funds to feed people in need. Choose your own route, whether it’s walking five kilometers or fundraising your way through it. Today through Dec. 1. $35. Register at

Nov. 27 FREE Family Christmas Tree Farm. You are sure to find the perfect tree at this family-owned, 10-acre farm where you can choose and cut your own Monterey Pine or pick from fresh-cut Noble, Douglas and Grand Fir trees. Also includes farm animal encounters and hay rides for kids. Today through end of Dec., 9 am–9 pm. 300 Pepper Dr., El Cajon. Wild Holidays at the San Diego Zoo Safari Park. Today through Nov. 29, Dec. 5, 6, 12, 13, 19–23, 26–31; 9 am–8 pm. Visit website for activities and ticket prices. 15500 San Pasqual Valley Rd., Escondido. FREE PB Christmas Tree Farm. Choose from a wide selection of Noble Firs, Douglas Firs, Grand Firs, Fraser Firs and Nordmann Firs. Today through Dec. 24; Mon.–Fri., 10 am–10 pm; Sat. & Sun., 8 am–10 pm. 870 Garnet Ave., Pacific Beach. Jungle Bells at the San Diego Zoo. Today through Nov. 29, Dec. 5, 6, 12, 13, 19–23, 26–31; 9 am–8 pm. Visit website for activities and ticket prices. 2920 Zoo Dr., downtown. FREE Christmas Arts, Crafts & Vintage Market. Up-cycled, recycled, restored, vintage, antique, and handmade wares with

30 • • November 2020

a large variety of jewelry, woodworking, candles, soaps, fine art and more. Family activities include Snows Pony Rides and petting corral, Kids ‘n Paint, and face painting. Today through Nov. 29, 9 am–4 pm. Bates Nut Farm, 15954 Woods Valley Rd., Valley Center. FREE Tom’s Adventures Christmas Trees. Bring your family and choose your fresh Oregon-grown Christmas tree. Mon.–Thurs., 1–8 pm; Fri., 1–9 pm; Sat. & Sun, 9 am–9 pm. 1430 E. Vista Way in Vista, 1360 Discovery St. in San Marcos, 555 Broadway in Chula Vista.

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Nov. 28 Small Business Saturday is a day dedicated to supporting small businesses. Holiday shoppers are encouraged to patronize brick-and-mortar businesses that are small and local. Today. For details visit Weekend Train Rides. See Nov. 7.

Nov. 29 FREE Holiday Lights at the Hotel Del. The Hotel del Coronado is especially festive during the holidays when thousands of sparkling lights, towering Christmas trees and garlands galore transform America’s beachfront legend into a shimmering winter wonderland. Today through end of Dec. Visit website for activities. 1500 Orange Ave., Coronado.

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Nov. 30 Sailing with Captain Santa Harbor Cruise. Enjoy a festive cruise around the bay and meet the man in red himself. Featuring photos with Santa, kid-friendly activities, narration of over 50 San Diego landmarks, a build-your-own pancake bar and more. Today, 10 am. Visit website for ticket prices. Pier 2, 970 N. Harbor Drive, downtown. VIRTUAL FREE Poway OnStage Virtual Field Trip “The Nutcracker”. Southern California Ballet will perform narrated show excerpts of the holiday classic “The Nutcracker”, and provide extension activities in movement, pantomime and costume design. Today through Dec. 18. Sign up at

San Diego Family sandiegofamily /SDFamily San Diego Family Magazine

Take dessert to a whole new level this Thanksgiving with Sweet Potato Swirled Cheesecake, featuring a delicious blend of fall spices and a gingersnap cookie crust. Ready to give it a “swirl” (see what we did there)? Find the recipe and instructions from Oceanside food blogger, Jackie Bruchez (aka The Seaside Baker) at

Photo credit:

Have Your (cheese)Cake and Eat it, too!

Dinner’s done. Now what? Discover a bunch of ideas for post-Thanksgiving-meal family fun at

November 2020 • •