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A Season of


20th Smash Year!

Dr. Seuss’s How the Grinch Stole Christmas! Book and lyrics by Timothy Mason Music by Mel Marvin Directed by James Vasquez ´ Original production conceived and directed by Jack O’Brien

NOVEMBER 4 – DECEMBER 24 Child tickets start at $24 Adult tickets start at $37

With special thanks to Audrey S. Geisel/The Dr. Seuss Fund at The San Diego Foundation

(619) 23-GLOBE! (234-5623) Dr. Seuss Properties TM & (c) 1957 and 2017 Dr. Seuss Enterprises, L.P. All Rights Reserved. J. Bernard Calloway, 2016. Photo by Jim Cox.

From Your Neighborhood McDonald’s® and

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During the hustle and bustle of the holidays, enjoy a simple moment celebrating the most delicious season of all with the rich, silky flavors of a McCafé® Peppermint Mocha. Get a small cup of this premium McCafé beverage today for only $2. At participating McDonald’s for a limited time. Cannot be combined with any other offer or any combo meal.

Come See Ronald McDonald®! Nov. 2, 2017, at 3:30 p.m. McDonald’s 619 Broadway Chula Vista, CA 91910

Happy Meal® Toys in November Hello Kitty® Pokémon™ © 2017 McDonald’s •

This November, we will be converting to Honest Kids® Organic Apple Juice in Happy Meals. Be on the lookout for the new beverage option.


35 198

2 - 2017

Volume 36 • Number 8 • November 2017

articles 40 This Season’s Hottest Toys

Our popular holiday toy review, part one

in every issue 12 14

Staff Page Short & Sweet News | Notes | Tips

46 November Calendar of Family Events


How to Inspire Thankfulness in Kids Plus, ideas to serve others as a family


Blessings Box Local mom spreads kindness in her community


Finding the Good Navy Chief helps foster kids in late wife’s honor


Dinner’s Done. Now What? 7 ideas for post-Thanksgiving family fun


Change a Child’s Life: Be a CASA How to become a Court Appointed Special Advocate


School Recognition: Outstanding Students


Mini Mason Jar Pies A must-have for your Thanksgiving meal!

6 • • November 2017


The Marketplace/Classifieds

On the Cover: Brothers Caio (4) and Matias (9) of Clairemont Mesa welcome fall.

Cover photo: All Colors Photography


Lose 20 lbs by the Holidays! See the video testimonies of these San Diego County residents (and more!) on our website now!

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“After being on Dr. Wong’s program for 2 months, I’ve lost almost 40 pounds. I was lethargic and couldn’t keep up with my kids but I’ve found an answer to my energy problems and I wake up with energy, I feel better, I’ve been eating healthier and I’ve been more active. Thank you Dr. Wong!” Rachel R. — San Diego

“Before I came to see Dr. Wong, I had a lot of health concerns. I had extreme knee pain, I was over-weight and I also had a lack of energy. After I had a consultation with Dr. Wong, he told me what was wrong. Everything we did involved no pain and in 8 weeks, I have lost 32 pounds without doing exercise! I am a lot more energetic and I feel like working out. I am stronger, more alert, more flexible and limber so I appreciate everything about Dr. Wong. If you’re ever in need of optimal health, come see Dr. Wong because he’ll make you strong!” Rodney W. — San Diego

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

Things to Do: Dining & Recipes • Apple Blackberry Upside-Down Cake • Turkey Pot Pie • Tips for Perfect Pie Crust • Friendsgiving Recipes for Kids

Things to Do: Seasonal Happenings • 10 Places to Buy Holiday Pies • What to Do with Holiday Leftovers • How to Have a Charlie Brown Thanksgiving • 9 Ways to Thank a Veteran

Can’t find what you’re looking for on our website? Enter keywords in the search box and browse our list of articles.

Follow Us: San Diego Family


San Diego Family Magazine



8 • • November 2017



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

Skating by the Sea at Hotel del Coronado puts everyone in a festive spirit! The Del, garnished with thousands of white sparkling lights, celebrates A Winter of Whimsy, Wishes and Wonder with seaside skating, Santa brunches, Jingle S’mores, holiday bike tours and more. Enter to win a 4-pack of passes to Skating by the Sea. Contest period: Nov. 1-15. Rodgers + Hammerstein’s CINDERELLA, the Broadway musical that delights audiences with its contemporary take on the classic tale, returns to San Diego from December 1-3 at the San Diego Civic Theatre. There’s the pumpkin, the glass slipper, the masked ball and more, plus surprising new twists! It’s a hilarious and romantic Broadway San Diego experience for anyone who’s ever had a wish, a dream—or a really great pair of shoes. Enter to win a 4-pack of tickets for your family. Contest ends Nov. 27. All aboard! Thomas the Tank Engine is inviting little engineers to join him and his best friend, Percy, for a day of family fun at Day Out with Thomas: The Friendship Tour 2017 hosted by the Orange Empire Railway Museum in Perris, California. On November 4, 5, 10, 11 & 12 children of all ages will enjoy a ride on Thomas the Tank Engine, photo opportunities, crafts, listening to stories and more. Enter to win a 4-pack of tickets to this delightful event. Contest ends Nov 2.

Win AWESOME toys from our kid-tested Holiday Toy Review! Turn to page 40 to find out which toys we’re giving away. Contest period: Nov. 15-27.

Make a difference



Editorial Publisher/Editor in Chief Sharon Bay

Great benefit package:

Up to $70,000 compensation

Managing Editor Lisa Gipson

Wellness package massages, pre-natal yoga, pedicure, manicure, fitness and nutrition Gift cards on special occasions $500 Bonus for children’s activity and more…

We are looking for surrogates now!

Calendar Editor Jennifer A. Burman Proofreading Gina Petrone


Call us today (844) 557-2412

Art Design/Web Design Rik Thiesfeld Cover Photo All Colors Photography •


Donate to the Special Needs Resource Foundation of San Diego

Editorial Submission Guidelines

Would you like to write for San Diego Family Magazine? For editorial guidelines, visit and see Editorial Guidelines at the bottom of the home page. A submission does not guarantee publication. We reserve the right to edit all submissions.

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San Diego Family Magazine is distributed at more than 1,700 locations. Pick up your free copy at: Vons Supermarkets, McDonald’s, Sombrero’s Mexican Food, Round Table Pizza, Wahoos, Fleet Science Center, schools, libraries, medical offices and more.


Receive 12 issues for $18. Subscription includes our annual publication, Out & About. Orders must include check or money order made out to: San Diego Family Magazine. Mail payment to: SDFM, Subscription Request, P.O. Box 23960, San Diego, CA 92193.

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Providing resources for parents of children with special needs! Donate at 10 • • November 2017

Distribution Audited by Business Business Manager Larry Bay Marketing Coordinator Michele Hancock Administrative Assistant Adrienne Sigeti Accounting Circulation Linda Bay Printing California Offset Printers

Teen Parties! Friday Nights

Birthday PartyTime!

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


A Family Adventure Guide to San Diego County

The Parent Resource Guide for Children with Special Needs




San Diego Family Magazine is published monthly by San Diego Family Magazine LLC. Copyright 2017. 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.


619-685-6970 • Clairemont, Linda Vista, Mission Valley North, Mira Mesa


Nicole Maggio 619-685-6971 • North County Inland (includes Scripps Ranch)

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Publisher’s Letter

We have so much to be thankful for! Our country has had its share of disasters recently and it is so inspiring to hear about and see all the first responders and volunteers who helped out. If there is a need, someone steps forward to help. When you volunteer, you make a difference—little or big—because you help someone make their life better. San Diego Family has several editorial pieces this month highlighting how San Diegans are making someone else’s life better. A big “Thank You” to all of them! There are also ideas to help your family come up with volunteering opportunities. We would like to take this time to thank YOU—our readers and our advertisers. We love bringing you together—San Diego Family Magazine is a great product to share. This year we celebrate Thanksgiving on November 23. Legend says that the Plymouth colonists shared their successful harvest with the Wampanoag Indians at the first Thanksgiving in autumn of 1621. Now we, along with family and friends, share food and drink, and reminisce about the past year. Most importantly, we are thankful for our freedom and our health.

Main Office: 1475 Sixth Avenue, Fifth Floor, San Diego, CA 92101 Mailing Address: P.O. Box 23960, San Diego, CA 92193-3960 Phone: 619-685-6970 Fax: 619-685-6978 E-mail:

12 • • November 2017

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.

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November 2017 • •


Short & Sweet

Lisa Gipson

This “Caring” Idea Box is filled with 60 ways that children can show they care, inspiring simple acts of goodwill and kindness. Idea Boxes contain wooden “coins” with ideas on both sides that encourage communication and independence. See many other fun themes at www

Wonder Hits Theaters this Month Is your fifth grader reading the bestselling book, Wonder? We’ve heard it’s on the reading list at some San Diego County schools. Wonder—an inspiring story of a boy born with facial differences who attends a mainstream elementary school for the first time as a fifth grader—hits the big screen on Nov. 17. Enter to win a Wonder prize pack (including the book, a book bag and pencil pouch) at contests/this-month-s-contests.

Way to Go, Willow Elementary! Willow Elementary in San Ysidro is making a commitment to healthy living with its new walking club. Every morning before school students walk or run laps around the athletic fields—many joined by siblings, parents and abuelitas (grandmothers). “Students are excited to come to school and participate in this healthy activity,” says Consuelo Carranza, Willow Elementary assistant principal. “Attendance rates have improved and we’ve seen a decrease in student behavioral issues, especially in the morning.” When students walk a mile (five laps), they earn a prize such as a pencil, bracelet or ball. Students can opt to cash in their miles for Willow Bucks, the only currency accepted at the school’s new student store.

14 • • November 2017

1,000 Books Before Kindergarten Did you know the San Diego Public Library offers a free, fun literacy program for pre-readers? Reading 1,000 books before kindergarten may sound challenging, but people who read three books per day will reach their goal in just one year; one book per day—three years. The library encourages reading the same book several times—and each time counts. Participating children receive milestone rewards every 25 books. Learn more and register at www.sandiego .gov/1000books.

Halloween Costume Photo Contest Share photos of your costumed cuties for a chance to win a cool prize! Follow these steps to enter: 1. Follow us on Instagram @sandiegofamilymagazine 2. Post a photo of your child(ren) in their Halloween costume(s) 3. Tag us @ sandiegofamilymagazine 4. Use the hashtag #SDFMhalloween Deadline to post is November 5. Submitted photos may be featured on our website and/or in our magazine. We will pick our favorite photo and announce the winner on Instagram.

The One Day House by Julia Durango is a sweet story about a young boy who hopes to help his elderly friend repair her home. This charming picture book inspires volunteerism and a sense of community, and gives a nod to United Way and Habitat for Humanity. Available on Amazon. Find more gift book suggestions at www book-multimedia-reviews.


Cox Digital Academy Offers Free Online Resources to Make Learning Fun Cox Communications has launched the Cox Digital Academy, a website that gives families access to free online resources such as educational games, social media safety, do-it-yourself science projects, and computer basics.

The Cox Digital Academy features tools and resources from Common Sense Media, EVERFI, and the Public Library Association, which have partnered with Cox Communications through its Connect2Compete program.

Whether it’s homework help and a “making it rain in a jar” activity for students, or computer and internet basics and financial literacy for parents, families can take advantage of a host of educational resources that make learning fun.

Connect2Compete provides low-cost internet for families that have a K-12 student in the home and are part of the national free school lunch program or receive government assistance.

The Cox Digital Academy offers:

Cox supports local students and education through the Cox Digital Academy and Connect2Compete.

• Computer and internet basics – Learn how to create and manage email accounts, conduct web searches, and navigate search engines;

For more information on Connect2Compete, or to see if you qualify, call 1-855-222-3252, or visit

• Educational games – Resources for students and teachers, homework help, and teaching strategies;

The Cox Digital Academy is available to everyone at

• Job skills – Easily navigate job search engines, create resumes, and fill out online applications; • Social media and online safety – Tools to help prevent cyberbullying, learn social media basics, and protect social media privacy; • Online financial literacy – Set up a checking account online, and manage an online budget.

Sarah Lyons




As Thanksgiving approaches, it’s easy to get

distracted by the excitement of delicious food, football games, Black Friday shopping, and the quest for the perfect table settings. As people gather with family and friends, they may pause to acknowledge their blessings; but what can families do to inspire thankfulness in kids all year long?

Serve as a Family Families who do service projects together tend to appreciate what they have more. When children see that some people are less fortunate, they develop a desire to help others and become more aware of blessings in their own lives. cont. on p. 18

Teach Kids to Say Thank You

Model Gratitude

16 • • November 2017

• Organize a supply drive for those in need (jackets, blankets, toys or clothing). • Take the kids shopping for nonperishable foods to donate to a local food pantry. Or build your own (see p. 20). • Fill shoeboxes with items for children overseas through Operation Christmas Child. Visit www .samaritanspurse .org for information, including dates and locations. • Bake cookies for friends, neighbors or local law enforcement. • Send care packages, cards and letters to soldiers overseas. Learn more in “9 Ways to Thank a Veteran” at www .sandiegofamily .com/things-todo/seasonalhappenings.

From a young age, teach children to say thank you for any acts of service or gifts. Even toddlers can be taught to sign “thank you.” Write thankyou notes as a family. Encourage an “It’s the thought that counts” philosophy; explain that it isn’t the gift itself, but the thought behind the purchase that we are grateful for. The most effective way to teach children gratitude is to model it. Let children hear you talk about things you’re thankful for. “I am so grateful for this beautiful day, so we can go to the park” or “I am thankful for a great job that pays for our home and food.” On Thanksgiving Day, each member of our family writes down something they are thankful for and reads it aloud at dinner. This can be done at the dinner table any night of the year. When kids recognize the blessings in their lives, they begin to appreciate them.

Opportunities to serve others

• Make cards for seniors in an assisted living center. Turkey on the Table is a fun way to display what people are thankful for—just write it on a paper “feather” for the turkey’s tail. Each purchase provides 10 meals to someone in need through Feeding America. Learn more at

• Plant flowers or trees. • Clean up school grounds or a local park or beach. • Have a garage sale and donate proceeds to a favorite charity.

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Say No It isn’t healthy to say yes to every request a child has. “No” or “not right now” teaches children the value of delayed gratification and encourages thankfulness for occasional treats. If a child is allowed to purchase something every time he visits a store, it becomes expected.

Discuss the Cost of Living Involve children in shopping so they see how much things cost. Point out the cost of eating at a restaurant— or other family purchases. Avoid blaming or anger when discussing money; use the opportunities to teach. Help children use allowance to buy something they want. Using their own money will help them appreciate it more.

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Encourage kids to think of friends and neighbors who may not have anywhere to go on Thanksgiving and invite them over for dinner. Discuss the importance of hospitality and welcoming others into your home. If you are not hosting Thanksgiving, consider having a brunch the next day and inviting friends and neighbors. When children have responsibilities in their family, they begin to understand the value of hard work and develop gratitude for the work that others do. Whether it’s regular chores or helping prepare (and clean up) Thanksgiving dinner, teamwork fosters appreciation and a good work ethic at a young age. It’s not necessary to wait for a big turkey dinner to express gratitude. Take time to inspire thankfulness in children for the blessings that surround us all year. v Sarah Lyons is a freelance writer and mom of six children, including 3-yearold triplets. Her family enjoys doing service projects together.

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Cherie Gough


Local Mom Spreads Kindness in Her Community give anytime they wish and for those in need to take what they want without questions or paperwork. “I had to go without sometimes,” she says. “When I was in high school and elementary school, I didn’t always feel comfortable explaining my situation. I want kids to be able to grab a granola bar if they’re hungry or bring home something their mom needs in the house. Even adults have a hard time reaching out for help.”

From Vision to Reality

Miranda Williams understands

the ripple effect that one act of kindness often creates. Last fall, Williams, an active duty Navy Lieutenant and mom, read about Little Free Pantries on Facebook. Little Free Pantries—similar to Little Free Libraries, but containing food instead of books—are designed for people who need a little help before their next paycheck. Williams was inspired to learn more. Her curiosity led to action and the seeds for a Blessings Box in her community of Santee were planted. According to Feeding San Diego, 1 in 8 San Diegans face hunger and food insecurity. These people don’t know how they will get their next meal and have little to no food at home.

Williams’ own experience while growing up inspired her to launch the project. Her quest to create the Blessings Box began by asking local organizations for support. The first two groups she approached were hesitant to help, attesting to the fact that there are so many food pantries and resources already available. But Williams knew the Blessings Box would provide a place for people to

Williams’ idea became reality when the Missions Committee at her church, Santee United Methodist, accepted her proposal. Together they worked to bring needed items to people in the community, no questions asked. A team from the church worked on the design. They decided on integral aspects such as a roof to keep items safe from the elements and sliding glass doors so donated items are always accessible and people can see what’s there and what’s needed. Volunteers from the Missions Committee acquired building materials and constructed the little pantry. cont. on p. 22

Photos courtesy of Steven Williams.

20 • • November 2017

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Location, Location, Location Choosing the right location for the Blessings Box was an important decision. Williams’ group wanted the box to be visible from the street, but also safe to access without too much traffic. They opted for a side street adjacent to the church. There is a parking lot and a nearby bus stop where passersby can see the box. The location is also near the church office, so someone seeking more help can come in and learn about local resources such as the Santee Food Bank.

Contents from the Heart Williams wants the public to understand what the Blessings Box is for. “This is not a place to drop off clothing or other items that are better suited for a thrift store,” she says. Donations needed are everyday household items, such as nonperishable food, toiletries and baby supplies.

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22 • • November 2017


After months of planning, the Blessings Box was ready for the public in April 2017. A ribbon-cutting ceremony followed shortly thereafter. Williams often drives by the location to see how things are going. “It’s working. I see new items, and that things have been taken. It’s not just people at the church participating. Word is spreading to nearby neighbors.” Some Boy Scouts from the Los Angeles area recently contacted Williams about creating a similar project. She—along with many people on social media—is sharing ideas for more Little Free Pantries in other areas. v

Feeling inspired? Find information about how to create a Blessings Box in your neighborhood at www or drop by the Santee Blessings Box located at 8964 Magnolia Ave. Cherie Gough is a local freelance writer and mom of two.

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Finding the Good

Navy Chief helps foster kids in late wife’s honor Chief Petty Officer Johnathon Stone laid his wife to rest on

Veterans Day last year; a fitting coincidence, he says. Sarah Stone, a 29-year-old mother of four, had been deeply supportive of her husband’s Naval career. “She was an amazing military wife,” says Stone. “She held it down. She knew the Sailor’s Creed. She loved the Navy like I love the Navy.” Now, one year after Sarah’s passing, he has launched a nonprofit in her memory. Simply Finding the Good is a registered 501(c)(3) that provides foster children with special items they can call their own. The items are delivered in a duffle bag emblazoned with #TeamStone, a family nickname that became their rallying-cry in the face of Sarah’s cancer diagnosis.

A Young Navy Family The Stones were high school sweethearts. They married young and left their small hometown in Illinois to start life as a Navy family. The couple shared a philosophy of positivity—vowing to find the good in every day and every hardship. Sarah was just 19 when she learned she was expecting twins; baby girls who were born three months early and endured a lengthy NICU stay. While twins Allison and Alyssa were in the NICU, the couple owned only one car. Johnathon started the engine every morning at 4 a.m., dropping Sarah at the hospital en route to

base. At the end of his workday, he joined her at the babies’ sides, where they stayed until the staff asked them to leave. “We still went to bed happy every night,” says Stone. Despite their worry and pain, the young couple remained committed to finding the good in each challenge. The twins were able to come home after three months in the hospital. They are now healthy, imaginative 10-year-olds. A few years later, the Stones welcomed another daughter, Madelynn, who is now 7. Because Johnathon was deploying that year, they weren’t certain if he would make it to the birth. Sarah moved to Illinois to be with family. Johnathon clung to daily updates as

Many foster children enter the system with nothing more than the clothes on their backs. Simply Finding the Good offers foster kids a duffle bag of their own filled with items they can treasure, no matter what happens. Make a monetary donation on their website. Or organize a supply drive of items that can brighten a foster child’s life. Donations are needed for all ages, including teens.

26 • • November 2017

Suggestions: Pillows Blankets Books Journals Clothes Toys Stuffed animals Diapers Picture albums Learn more or donate at



Earn your B.A. in Child Development from PLNU at a campus near you. Point Loma Nazarene University has partnered with community colleges across San Diego county to offer you a B.A. in Child Development that can help take your career to the next level with class just one night a week with built-in, real-world experience — and the rest online.

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his baby’s due date inched closer, but the stars aligned in the nick of time. “I pulled into San Diego on my ship, flew to Illinois, and made it just two days before she was born,” says Stone. Five tired, but happy redheads packed into their SUV four days later. Team Stone was San Diego bound with twin toddlers, a newborn and two parents filled to the brim with love. “It was a rough drive but we were so excited to get home,” says Stone. “Maddie has the biggest heart ever—just like her mom— and loves to snuggle and take care of everyone. She’s also a free soul who blazes her own path in life.”

The Decision to Foster


your FREE exam

Call (619) 579-2363 Today

New patients only. Cannot be used with insurance.


Pediatric Dental Exam

The Stones knew they wanted more children, but both adoption and pregnancy presented roadblocks. Sarah, committed as ever to finding the good, suggested foster parenting. She felt called to help as many children as possible, and hoped that one day the right child would enter their home and join the family by adoption. They contacted Angels Foster Family Network to begin the certification process, and joked that fostering might be their only chance to parent a boy. If a male child joined the family, Johnathon promised he would gladly take nighttime wakeup duty. Dad’s fate was sealed. Their first call was about a newborn baby boy. “We picked him up the next day,” says Stone. “Sarah walked in to meet him, and when she came back I saw a giant smile on her face. He was a pale, redheaded boy who fit right into my family.” In a turn of events that felt destined from the beginning, the Stones formally adopted Jackson, now 4, shortly before his second birthday. Jackson brought boundless joy and an extra pinch of masculinity to Team Stone. He also brought new challenges—he has severe global development delay, autism, and is not yet able to speak. “He’s a brilliant, amazing little kid,” says Stone. “I thank God everyday that I agreed to wake with him. If I’d been a hands-off dad, I’d be completely lost right now.” cont. on p. 30

28 • • November 2017


r Camp Winte ation registr A SAN DIEGO ORIGINAL open w o is n Learn the Language of Graphic Storytelling and Speak with Art! ! n onli e From beginning idea to scanned-in art, Little Fish and our pool of instructors will guide you in telling your story in any genre and style you want!

Our enrichment classes not only help students with their creativity and artistic skills, but also with their writing, visualization, conceptualization, problem solving, and completion techniques all of which help to boost overall academic and future career success.

Little Fish Comic Book Studio 6822B El Cajon Blvd., San Diego, CA 92115

619-356-1103 •

November 2017 • •







Centro Cultural de la Raza located in Balboa Park NEW

Afterschool Spanish Classes at MINT STUDIO

in Del Mar!

Learn language together while having fun!

Hurry, space is limited! FAMILY CLASSES NOW IN SESSION Offered at multiple school site locations – see website!

619.366.3098 • •

Follow San Diego Family on Facebook and Twitter! San Diego Family Magazine


Jewish Montessori Preschool in La Jolla • • • • • •

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

Tel (858) 452-3030 • Fax (858) 777-9199 •

Serving Allied Gardens, San Carlos, Del Cerro Easy Access for SDSU

Kindergarten teachers love students from our programs! ✓ ✓ ✓ ✓ ✓

Serving Ages 2 - 6 (Diapers OK) 2, 3, 4 & 5 Day Schedules Full Day Enrichment Program 3 Large, Beautiful Playgrounds Loving, Caring and Secure Environment

Canyon Rim Children's Center “Dedicated to the individuality of children.”

6801 Easton Court San Diego, CA 92120

Schedule a tour now: (619) 287-6767

30 • • November 2017


Sarah’s Diagnosis With Sarah’s encouragement, Johnathon volunteered for sea duty in 2015 and was soon pinned Chief Petty Officer. “I talked to Sarah about my goals, and we would both adjust if we weren’t on the same page.” They both knew that sea duty meant deployment. While her husband was at sea, Sarah’s health declined sharply. Worried that her concerns might distract from Johnathon’s duties, she didn’t share them. She also chose to delay a medical exam until his return— painful facts that Stone has had to let go. He came home from deployment to find his beloved wife looking seriously ill. They soon learned it was appendix cancer—aggressive, rare and quickly spreading throughout her body. “We got this,” was Team Stone’s response to the devastating news. They ramped up efforts to find the good in every day. Sarah, thinking of others even in her darkest hour, cut her hair before chemo and donated it. Expressing gratitude became an act of discipline that drove them forward. “We found a reason to smile no matter how bad it got,” says Stone. “We did that every night until the day she died.”

Simply Finding the Good Stone says he still believes finding the good is possible for everyone, no matter what they’re going through. He shares that message in Facebook video updates and is working on a book. His advice is simple: “If you can’t find the good, then do something good. Once you’ve done it a time or two, it’s highly addictive.” With the opening of his nonprofit, Johnathon provides an excellent opportunity for the community to make a positive impact on the lives of struggling kids. If you’d like to support Simply Finding the Good in the mission to help foster children, visit (and see the sidebar on p. 26 for ideas). v Anne Malinoski is a contributing writer and mother of two boys. She is a Navy Reserve spouse.


Canyon Rim Children's Center “Dedicated to the individuality of children.”

Canyon Rim Children’s Center (CRCC) has been providing high quality, enrichment, preschool programs for San Diego children since 1998. We are a full day, year round, enrichment program. Our learning philosophy is based on developmentally appropriate practices inspired by the schools in Reggio Emilia, Italy. Our developmental, play-based, preschool serves children ages two through six.

At CRCC, we strive to maintain child to teacher ratios lower than those required by the State of California. Our teachers’ educational credentials exceed those as specified by the State. Our professional staff creates a safe and caring environment where the emphasis is on learning through play. As Fred Rogers, a.k.a., “Mr. Rogers” said, “Play is often talked about as if it were a relief from serious learning. But for children play is serious learning. Play is really the work of childhood.” We recognize each child is a unique person with individual rates of growth. Our goal is to meet each child’s

emotional, social, cognitive and physical needs in a relaxed, loving environment, free from personal criticism and excessive competition. Activities in art, music, math, language, science, dramatic play, fine and gross motor development are fashioned to facilitate transition from one developmental stage to the next. Our teachers also use our wellequipped, natural playgrounds to support exploration and promote physical development. Natural outdoor spaces enhance curiosity & encourage children to develop an appreciation and awareness of nature. At CRCC, children develop the skills of observation, inquiry, concentration, problem solving, and self-reliance. Our structured, yet open-ended program prepares each child to utilize his or her intellectual and creative abilities in future learning tasks. Here we work to give each child the tools and the foundation on which to build a lifetime of learning. Kindergarten teachers love our CRCC children!

Petits Amigos is a combined Spanish Immersion and Gymnastics Preschool for children ages 2.5 to 5 years old. Located inside of Gyminny Kids Gymnastics in Rancho Bernardo, we combine foreign languge and gymnastics for a complete mind and body learning experience.

858-248-HOLA 17022 Camino San Bernardo, San Diego, 92127 Lic #376701280

Happy Kids Hang Out Here You can go to work confident your child is safe, happy, having fun and thriving with our teachers. We help your child develop excitement and curiosity about learning, plus strong self-esteem that will last a lifetime.

Expecting? Sign-up now for our infant program!

Newborn - Age 5 Preschool & Child Development Center

For more information go to www or to schedule a tour call (619) 287-6767.

Caring for children for over 21 years! 3422 Tripp Ct., San Diego, CA 92121 At Sorrento Valley Road

(858) 794-9130

California State License Numbers 3766000130 /1

November 2017 • •


Christa Melnyk Hines Remember those on deployment. If your spouse is

Dinner’s Done,

Now What?

IDEAS FOR POSTTHANKSGIVING FAMILY FUN Get out the board games. Get the kids off of their phones and video games and engage in lighthearted family fun and conversation with a board game. Playing games as a family builds camaraderie, provides low-key entertainment and face-to-face togetherness. Some family favorites include Catan, Pandemic, Telestrations and Clue—or try this year’s new games!

Find great new games at www.sandiegofamily .com/for-the-kids/kid-tested-toy-product-review.

deployed for military duty over the Thanksgiving holiday, he (or she) will definitely be missed. After dinner, invite your family and friends to circle around the table to make cards and write letters to your absent loved one. Mail everything in a package to show they were still an important part of your day.

Find more great ways to show gratitude to military service members in “9 Ways to Thank a Veteran” at Go for a walk. According to the Calorie Control Council, a traditional Thanksgiving meal serves up to 4,500 calories and 229 grams of fat for the average American. Start burning some of those calories by taking a stroll after the big meal.

Plan a scavenger hunt. Send Play touch football. Football is as much a part of Thanksgiving as turkey and pumpkin pie. Play a casual, but fun game of touch football. It’s a great way to burn off some calories before pie!

Share family stories. While the kids are waiting for the Thanksgiving meal, have them write questions to ask dinner guests and slip one under the plate of each table setting. After dinner, go around the table and have each person pull out their question and share. Questions such as “What was Thanksgiving like when you were growing up?” and “What was your best Thanksgiving ever and why?” will rekindle fond memories.

everyone outside for a scavenger hunt. Give each team a small bag to collect items or have them use phones to take photos of items on the list. Keep the hunt simple for youngsters and a little more challenging for older kids. Items on the list might include: something red, a heart-shaped leaf, a stick shaped like a Y, a black rock, a feather, etc. Team adults with kids and turn the hunt into a fun race to the finish. The winning team receives the first slice of pie or a silly prize like pilgrim’s hats to wear during dessert.

Get into the holiday spirit. If your extended family is together for Thanksgiving, this is a good time to pull names for a secret Santa or white elephant gift exchange. Everyone draws names, keeps the name they pulled secret, and purchases a light-hearted or wacky gift to exchange around the holidays. v

Freelance journalist Christa Melnyk Hines and her husband have two sons, ages 12 and 10. Every year after the big feast, they take their two dogs for a walk through the autumn leaves.

32 • • November 2017


PUBLIC CHARTER SCHOOLS National University Academy is dedicated to providing families with a variety of K-12 learning programs. We strongly believe that all students are unique and capable learners that through positive educational experiences, can reach their maximum potential.

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Academically rigorous Common Core Standards-based curriculum An affiliate of the National University System © 2017 National University NUA17_6974

Change a Child’s Life:

Wendy Faucett

Be a CASA How to become a Court Appointed Special Advocate

Child Welfare Services has a vision

that every child grow up feeling safe and nurtured; and that children deserve a loving and permanent home. Help that vision become a reality for kids caught up in the juvenile dependency system. Many adults come and go throughout the dependency process: foster parents, lawyers, social workers, teachers and medical professionals. Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASAs) stay with their case child(ren) throughout the entire process, giving the child at least one adult who consistently advocates for her best interests above all else. We’ve heard the radio ads: “Not everyone can be a foster parent, but anyone can help a foster child.” I took that message to heart years ago and though I didn’t have time to spare, I made sure to contribute regularly to the local clothing and school supply collections for foster kids. Later, I signed up for an information session on becoming a CASA through Voices for Children (VFC). Many volunteer CASAs also work full-time and have no problem finding time to fulfill their responsibilities.

34 • • November 2017

There are more than 3,000 children in foster care in San Diego County—children who need adult help and support. You can change a child’s life by volunteering just 10–15 hours a month. Important qualities in a CASA are being organized, patient (the wheels of the court system turn slowly), wellspoken, compassionate to all involved, able to meet deadlines, and committed to both the rules and requirements of the position and the children served. Don Willis is a board member with Voices for Children whose late wife was

a CASA in three states over a 26-year period. Willis also served on a training curriculum committee in Ohio. “VFC has an impressively thorough training program and offers excellent support to their CASAs,” he says. They are also organized, professional, friendly and appreciative. Willis encourages people to first attend the 90-minute information session to get a clear overview of what being a CASA entails. People who like what they hear at the information session attend training once the pre-requisites are met. “Advocate University is a comprehensive 35–40 hour training (both in-class and online sessions) that all volunteers must graduate from to become a CASA,” says Erin Shaner, advocacy supervisor with VFC. “Trainings are offered 13 times per year and include options for weekday morning, evening or Saturday schedules,” Shaner says. “Typically trainings are held over a four-week period. The curriculum covers topics such as educational needs, child development, working with parents and court report writing.” cont. on p. 36


schools, camps, parties & more!

tuff! Win s

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must read articles


so c


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Visit our newly designed site now! -






Official School of the Scripps Ballet Theatre

Growing Up at Scripps Performing Arts Academy. . .

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For details call us at 858-345-1888 or visit SOUL is located at the Boys and Girls Club of Solana Beach

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Circus Classes

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36 • • November 2017

Now lling! En r o

Pre-Requisites to Enroll in CASA Training • Must be age 21+ • Attend an information session and interview • Background check • Safety screening (fingerprints, DMV, etc.) Once training is complete, the VFC team matches CASAs with a case child or sibling group. Many factors are considered in this process: experience, strengths, requests and the child’s needs. VFC assigns an advocacy supervisor who knows the child’s case and can answer questions. The supervisor is also there for support and to listen to any concerns, misgivings or discomfort as needed. I’ll admit, as the training went on, I wasn’t sure becoming a CASA was a good fit for me. I was worried about how I would react to adults behaving badly at their children’s expense, given that my natural inclination is to condemn them. I also wondered whether my efforts would be effective. My uncertainty disappeared after learning two things: 1) VFC never puts their CASAs in an unsupervised and/ or potentially dangerous situation, and 2) Judges read and respect the CASA’s findings and recommendations at least 85 percent of the time. That means that what I observe and write in the court reports truly makes a difference for my case children. CASAs have an opportunity to effect real change in the lives of foster children. Consider joining other generous and caring individuals in the CASA community and sign up for an information session today. Go to www, click on “Volunteer” and take the first step to become a much-needed advocate for San Diego foster children. v Wendy Faucett is a Certified Leadership Parenting Coach, retired teacher and San Diego County CASA.


Student Highlights!

School Recognition

Outstanding Students Are you looking for a unique educational opportunity to inspire and motivate your kids? Read the student bios below to learn more about these non-traditional school environments. Be sure to contact the schools directly for more information and check upcoming issues for more education spotlights (December: exceptional teachers; January: school administrators).

Lina Gruber is an ambitious digital arts student at Little Fish Comic Book Studio. She’s been taking classes for almost a year now, and has made leaps and bounds in refining her technique and understanding of both the program she works in and the rendering of shapes, shadows, and color itself. While Lina wants to pursue a medical career, she has a true passion for art and works very hard to improve her abilities with every assignment! Lina joined us at Comic-Con this year and sold out of her own prints! Little Fish Comic Book Studio • 6822B El Cajon Blvd., San Diego, CA 92115

Maria Udakova, TK student When Maria came to RVA, she knew only a handful of English words. In the months since she enrolled, her English skills have advanced to the point that she’s creating puppet shows that can last as long as 5 minutes. She’s even comfortable enough now in English that she recites nursery rhymes in front of the whole school. When a new student arrived who didn’t speak English, she immediately offered to help him understand what he needed to do. She may be our youngest student, but she’s a big helper.


School Recognition: Outstanding Students

Congratulations to the hardworking kids highlighted here!

Tam Ho, 5th grade student - Tam’s curiosity keeps him exploring and learning. He loves to ask questions to make sure he understands every lesson as well as he can. Whether we’re designing a flying car, learning about the Kumeyaay, or catching a tobacco worm in the garden’s tomato patch, he’s involved, focused, and enthusiastic. Tam is a wonderful role model for all our students.

Renaissance Village Academy

10625 Scripps Ranch Blvd., Ste. A, San Diego, CA 92131 • 858.564.9622 •

November 2017 • •


M ontessori …


Why Montessori Education? Dr. Maria Montessori demonstrated that children learn best in an environment of love, trust, understanding, patience and consistency. With a Montessori education, students can excel academically, while experiencing the values of cooperation, respect, selfconfidence, and the joy of learning! For an education that can transform lives, contact your local Montessori school.

“A Montessori Student is a Future Citizen of the World” East County

San Diego Coastal


BETH MONTESSORI Infants/Toddler/Preschool/Kindergarten

10435 Campo Rd., Spring Valley 91978 Rancho San Diego

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


MARIA MONTESSORI SCHOOL Preschool/Elementary/Middle

Lic. #376600356

Lic. # 376700496



Lic. # 372002147

Lic. #376614702

4544 Pocahontas Ave., San Diego 92117 La Jolla, Clairemont, Pacific Beach


8121 Braddock Place, San Diego 92114 Lemon Grove


South Bay


Lic. #376600555

MONTESSORI AMERICAN SCHOOL Toddler/Preschool/Kindergarten

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


3604 Bonita Road, Chula Vista 91910 Bonita, Chula Vista & Eastlake

MONTESSORI DISCOVERY SCHOOL First Step/Preschool/Kindergarten 8559 Fanita Dr., Santee 92071 Santee, San Carlos, Fletcher Hills

Lic. #370805837

Lic. #372005444


619-422-1220 MONTESSORI EXPLORER Toddler/Preschool/Lower Elementary Lic. #376700503

271 East J St., Chula Vista 91910 Bonita & Chula Vista


“Education is a natural process carried out by the child and is not acquired by listening to words but by experiences in the environment.”

Infants • toddlers • Preschool • KIndergarten • elementary • mIddle school

San Diego Central

North County Coastal

North County Inland


CENTRAL MONTESSORI SCHOOL Toddler/Preschool/Kindergarten

COUNTRY MONTESSORI SCHOOL Preschool/Kindergarten/Elementary

Lic. # 372005868

6917 Tait St., San Diego 92111 Linda Vista


Lic. #376700910

Encinitas, Cardiff, Carlsbad, La Costa

760-479-9889 ENCINITAS COUNTRY DAY SCHOOL Preschool/Elementary/Middle

Lic # 372006093

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


Lic. #372005943

SCRIPPS MONTESSORI SCHOOL Toddler/Preschool/Elementary


9939 Old Grove Rd., San Diego 92131 Scripps Ranch

Two Locations in Encinitas Encinitas

Lic. # 370801839


Each Montessori school is independently owned and operated. Please check your local school for specific information regarding program options and Montessori content.

This Season’s Hottest Toys Not sure what to get the kids this year? Here are some of the best new toys reviewed by San Diego kids and parents. Check back next month for more! Tickle Me Elmo $29.99; 18 months+ Tickle Me Elmo is back for a new generation of kids. Press Elmo’s tummy or squeeze his feet to hear his familiar, contagious giggle—you can’t help but laugh along!

Pulse Safe Start Transform Electric Scooter $99.99; 6+ Three-wheel electric scooter features “grow with me” handlebar (three heights) and the ability to set speed at 5 mph or 8 mph. Operates with thumbcontrolled throttle; stops with rear foot brake. Wheels are positioned for lean-toturn fun. Accommodates up to 150 lbs.

Disney Junior Doc McStuffins All-in-One Nursery $79.99; 3+ Preschoolers love to role-play with this adorable nursery that features Doc’s “laptop” to diagnose patients, light-andsound stethoscope, baby scale and more. “OK, what brings you to the doctor today?” asks 3-year-old Shae.

40 • • November 2017

Oonies Starter Pack $19.99; 5+ Oonies—they’re not bubbles and they’re not balloons! Take an Oonies pellet, place it in the inflator and watch it magically grow. Oonies stick to each other so kids can make fun creatures and designs with no glue, water or mess.

Propel Star Wars Battle Drones $179; 14+ Behold, Star Wars fans! Limited edition Star Wars Battle Drones come in an impressive box that plays Star Wars theme music or dialogue when opened. Channel “the force” when in combat with friends or using the companion app.

Gifts for Growing Minds SHOP A STORE NEAR YOU! SAN DIEGO 7510 Hazard Center Dr. San Diego, CA 92108 SAN MARCOS 702 Center Dr. San Marcos, CA 92069

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Valid through 11/30/17, 11:59 p.m., PST. Purchase one item at regular price and receive a second item of equal or lesser value at 50% off its regular price. Limit one coupon per customer and valid for one-time use on instore or online purchases only. Not valid on sale, discounted or clearance items. Purchase must be made in a single transaction. Cannot be resold or used for commercial purposes. Cannot be used toward the purchase of gift cards or combined with any other coupon, discount or offer. Not applicable on prior purchases or custom-stocked items. Excludes sales tax and shipping charges. No ship-to or special orders. Valid on in-stock items only. No cash value. Returns are subject to the discounted purchase price and to Lakeshore’s return policy. Must present coupon code at time of purchase for all in-store transactions. Void where prohibited. Subject to restrictions and change without notice. ©2017 Lakeshore 853713

coupon code: 2509

Play & Explore Rocket • 3 yrs.–7 yrs.

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“THANKSGIVING” Parent’s Nite Out 11/18 6-10PM $20 per child PNO

prek - 6th grade

fun for the whole family!

Helen Woodward Animal Center’s

ThanksGiVing November 20-22

frosty farm

December 2, 3, 9, 10

Register at

Del Mar Hills Nursery School Visit our website 858-755-8338 13692 Mango Drive, Del Mar

Lic.# 376600498

experience HANDS-ON Animal Interactions!

“A learning environment that balances the physical, emotional, cognitive, creative, social & emotional needs of your child.”

Scheduling Tours for the 2018-2019 School Year Leaders in Early Childhood Education Since 1970

November 2017 • •


NightZone Capture the Flag $29.99; 6+ Challenge friends to a nighttime game of Capture the Flag with lightup flags and bases. “This game is awesome! It changes colors when you capture the enemy’s flag!” says Audrey (11).

Furreal Roarin’ Tyler, the Playful Tiger $129.9; 4+ 100-plus sound and motion combinations. Responds to touch with expressive eyes, sounds and movements. “It acts so much like a baby tiger that the kids asked if they can get a real one if they do OK with this one!” says Emily. Requires 4 C batteries.

Shark Bite $22.99; 4+ Take turns fishing for sea creatures, but be careful— you never know when the shark will bite. Fun game for all ages! No batteries needed. Discover tons more family games at kid-tested-toy-product-review.

RoseArt’s CharMinis Charm Maker Variety Pack $24.99; 6+ Customize stylish bracelets and necklaces with charms that simply fuse with water. Includes a decorative jewelry stand. “Perfect for a budding fashion designer or glitter girl,” says mom Mary.

Think & Learn Teach ‘n Tag Movi $50; 3+ Teach ‘n Tag Movi gets young kids up and moving with interactive games that develop gross motor skills and the ability to follow directions. Facial expressions correspond with movement.

Think & Learn Smart Cycle $150; 3+ The Smart Cycle creates a physical play experience in conjunction with a tablet or TV. Kids race while playing games that teach letters, phonics, spelling, vocabulary and reading. Adjustable seat and tablet holder. Download the free app for 15 levels of play. Hot Wheels Super Ultimate Garage $199.99; 5+ The Hot Wheels Super Ultimate Garage stands over three feet tall and stores over 140 cars for hours of engaging play. The motorized elevator transports up to 23 cars at a time.

42 • • November 2017

Squishmallows $14.99-$24.99; All ages Adorable Squishmallows come in various sizes. The stuffing feels similar to memory foam, so everyone who picks one up gives it a big squeeze. “Everything would be perfect if my teen would stop taking it from me!” says mom Lisa.

John Deere Monster Treads Deluxe Lightning Wheels Tractor $29.99; 3+ Features motion-activated sounds and wheels that change color when the tractor rolls. “Use it in a dark room—you won’t be disappointed!” says mom Katrina.

Disney Princess Magical Wand Palace by Little People $49.99; 1½–5 years Cinderella and Rapunzel (included) come to life with a wave of the magical wand. Interactive palace recognizes each princess, playing familiar phrases and sounds. Also features a magical light show and stairs and dance floor that light up!

Baby Alive Sweet Tears Baby $49.99; 3+ Baby Alive frowns and cries tears when she doesn’t feel well. With 35 sounds and phrases, she is very expressive! Choose Mommy or Daddy play mode; English or Spanish; available in three ethnicities. “My daughter practices empathy as she addresses the dolls needs and feelings,” says mom Kirsten.

Marvel Spider-Man Mega City Playset $99.99; 4+ Five play levels (a whopping 46”) include a subway, bank vault, web jail and Peter Parker’s secret lab. Spider-Man swings into action on the web zipline. “The size makes it easy for kids to play together—they love it,” says mom Emily.

Nanea Mitchell Doll & Book $115; 8+ Nanea Mitchell, American Girl’s newest BeForever character, is a brave and determined girl from Honolulu, Hawaii whose efforts to help friends and neighbors during World War II are driven by her spirit of “aloha.”

Rocking Doll Cradle $79; 1+ Crafted from sturdy wood and featuring pretty details, this rocking cradle inspires imaginative play and gives children a beautiful place to tuck their favorite doll in.

44 • • November 2017

Calendar • November

Jennifer A. Burman

Day Out with Thomas: The Friendship Tour

All tracks lead to the Orange Empire Railway Museum in Perris, California for this not-to-miss event! Take a ride with Thomas the Tank Engine and his best friend, Percy, meet Sir Topham Hatt, and participate in tons of themed activities including crafts, storytelling, coloring and more. Children can collect passport stamps throughout the day to receive a special gift. Nov. 4, 5, 10-12, 8 am-5 pm. Tickets start at $21. 2201 A St., Perris.

Editor’s Picks FREE Liberty Station Tree Lighting & Holiday Festivities

Feel the spirit of the season with lights all aglow during the lighting of Liberty Station’s iconic 88-foot Norfolk pine tree. Get your gift shopping done at the Holiday Marketplace, “chill” with family and friends at the Rady Children’s Ice Rink, take mini train rides on the Liberty Express, have your photo taken with Santa and bundle up for an outdoor screening of How the Grinch Stole Christmas! Nov. 29, 5-9 pm. For more holiday events in Liberty Station, visit

46 • • November 2017

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

Don’t forget to call to confirm dates, times and admission prices.

wednesday | 1 Candy Buy Back at The Super Dentists. Until Nov. 3, kids can bring in candy to The Super Dentists offices in exchange for cash! They will receive $1 for every pound of candy, and The Super Dentists will also donate $1 to charities helping schools. Candy collected will be sent overseas to our military troops. Offices located in Chula Vista, Eastlake, Carmel Valley and Oceanside. FREE Dia de los Muertos Festival. Create altars to remember lost loved ones, watch a performance (7 pm) by Selena tribute band, Como la Flor, view an altar to Selena created by artist Daniel Martinez, and enjoy food, arts and crafts, and face painting for kids. 6 pm. California Center for the Arts, Escondido, 340 N. Escondido Blvd. Family Night: Make Pumpkin Pies. 6-7 pm. $3 per pie. San Marcos Community Center, 3 Civic Center Dr. Children’s Choice Pediatric Dental Care’s Candy Buy Back. Receive $2 for every pound of candy you turn in, and $2 will also be donated to the school that turns in the most sweets. 9 am-6 pm. Note: Candy must be dropped off by the child or parent/ guardian. 10-pound limit per person. 4074 Fairmount Ave., Ste. B, San Diego. Email info@ or call 619-996-9543.

National Gratitude Month Family Literacy Month Peanut Butter Lovers Month

Find the turkeys and Christmas trees in this month’s irresistible spread of Thanksgiving and holiday happenings.

iFLY Oceanside’s All Abilities Night. Get a chance to soar high at this exclusive event for those with special needs and their families. 4:30-7 pm. $39.95 includes two-flight package with free digital video. Reservations required; space is limited. 3178 Vista Way.;; 760-606-4359. Parent Movie Morning & Baby’s Night Out at UltraStar Cinemas. Bring your baby to watch a movie and take advantage of valet stroller parking and changing facilities in the auditorium. Wednesdays; Parent Movie Morning, 10 am; Baby’s Night Out, 7 pm. UltraStar Mission Valley Cinemas at Hazard Center, 7510 Hazard Center Dr., San Diego.

thursday | 2 FREE See Ronald McDonald and have fun with music and surprises. 3:30 pm. McDonald’s at 619 Broadway, Chula Vista.

Plan fun-filled family adventures all year long with Out & About! Pick one up at CVS Pharmacy or find the expanded digital edition at www .sandiegofamily .com/things-to-do/ out-about. “I’ll Push You: The Camino Journey of 500 Miles, Two Best Friends and One Wheelchair.” Watch this inspirational documentary (rated PG-13) about two lifelong friends embarking on an epic adventure to hike Spain’s El Camino de Santiago. Patrick pushes Justin, who is fighting a degenerative neuromuscular disease, in a wheelchair along the entire journey. 7:30 pm. For tickets and participating movie theaters, visit

FREE Fall Back Festival

This children’s historical street faire in the heart of downtown’s Gaslamp Quarter takes you to the 1880s where kids can saddle up for pony rides, learn to churn butter and pan for gold with real prospectors. Discover the fun side of history with a Wild West show, old-fashioned contests, blacksmith demos, time-period portraits complete with traditional Wild West attire and more. Nov. 5, 11 am-4 pm. 4th Ave., between Market & J Sts., and Island Ave., between 4th & 5th Aves.

November 2017 • •



• Peace of Mind • Confidence • Great Exercise


• So much FUN!

Empowering Students with Confidence and speaking skills! Drama Classes are Fun, Interactive and Developmental. Check website for locations 619.846.2407 non-profit Drama Advantages organization member

Get in the pool today! FREE Introductory Lesson*

*Check for available times & enroll today.

• Indoor heated pool • Infant to adult • 3-to-1 student/teacher ratio

Excellent, Special Needs Programs for children with Autism!


Fencing & Archery SPECIAL 1/2 off first month of classes Must purchase by Dec. 31, 2017. New students only. Not valid for camps.

Classes in • Archery • Fencing • Medieval Sword • Light Saber

LionHeart Academy • 1331 N. Cuyamaca St., El Cajon 619-462-2027 •

Tony/Sept 2017

friday | 3

Swim Lessons Photo by Zena Holloway •

START THE Classes Fun YEAR OFF are and STRONG Special

Calendar • November

“Elf The Musical, Jr.” Tonight until Nov. 12; visit website for show times. $17-$19. Mater Dei Catholic High School, 1615 Mater Dei Dr., Chula Vista. Mac’s Kids Corner. This weekly story time brings a book to life with operating trains, paints, puppets and more. Fridays, 10-11 am. Free with admission. San Diego Model Railroad Museum, Balboa Park. “Tuck Everlasting, The Musical.” When 11-year-old Winnie Foster learns of the magic behind the Tuck family’s unending youth, she must fight to protect their secret from those who would do anything for a chance at eternal life. Through Nov. 12. Fri., 7 pm; Sat. & Sun., 2 pm. Visit website for tickets. Casa del Prado Theatre, Balboa Park. FUNbelievable Play’s Family Fun Nights. Fridays, 5-8 pm. Regular admission prices apply. 11655 Riverside Dr. #155-157, Lakeside.

saturday | 4 JCompany Youth Theatre Presents “Disney’s The Lion King.” Tonight, 8 pm & tomorrow, 1 & 4:30 pm. Visit website for tickets. David & Dorothea Garfield Theatre, 4126 Executive Dr., La Jolla. www.sdcjc .org/garfield/upcomingevents.aspx. FREE Curie Craft Fair. Artisans will sell quality handcrafted wares including holiday gifts, ceramics, jewelry, clothing, folk art and more. Also, carnival games, silent auction baskets, a used book tent and cake walk. 9 am-3 pm. Curie Elementary, 4080 Governor Dr., University City. FREE Family Activity at Renaissance Village Academy: Abaci are Fun! 3-5 pm. 10625 Scripps Ranch Blvd., Ste. A, San Diego. FREE Crafts at the Lakeshore Learning Store. For ages 3 & up. Saturdays, 11 am-3 pm. Nov. 4: Wise Old Owl Wreath; Nov. 11: Patriotic Spinner; Nov. 18: Quirky Turkey Craft; Nov. 25: I Can Help! Chore Chart. 7510 Hazard Center Dr., San Diego & 702 Center Dr., San Marcos. FREE San Martin de Porres Fall Family Festival. Local art expo, Kids Zone, a community yard sale, pumpkin carving, DJ, zumbathon and vendors. 8 am-4:30 pm.

48 • • November 2017

A Veterans Day

Celebration for All! Presented by


Muse u for M m Admiss ilitary i , Vete on and t ran heir F amili s es

Saturday, November 11, 2017 San Diego Blood Bank Blood Drive

Veterans Day Parade

NBC 7 & Telemundo 20 Salute to Service Festival

Purina Pro Plan Dog Challenge



presented by the Thank You Heroes

Tuesday, Nov 7 10am-3pm

Home Rebate Program


Live entertainment • KidzZone • Activities • Prizes • Giveaways The festival is open to the public with regular museum admission

(619) 544-9600 • master QC logo (c:100, m:60, y:0, k:0)

Poway Gymnastics

Calendar • November 9119 Jamacha Rd., Spring Valley. 619-4263595, ext. 1604.

Classes • Teams

• Open Gym • Competitive Team for Girls • Preschool Girls & Boys thru Adult






Air Conditioned Facility!

Sign Up Now!!

Fall Back


Children's Historical Street Faire Gaslamp Quarter | 4th & Island

Sunday, November 5th, 11 am-4 pm Old West Town | Fun Activities & Crafts | Pony Rides Contests & Entertainment | Historical Booths | Carnival Games

GaslampFoundation.Org A place where happiness is found and a love for nature is born FREE FIELD TRIPS for schools & special groups! Open to public by appt

“Dr. Seuss’s How the Grinch Stole Christmas!” The Old Globe Theatre is once again transformed into snow-covered Whoville, right down to the last can of Who-hash! Enjoy songs like Santa for a Day, You’re a Mean One, Mr. Grinch and Welcome, Christmas (Fah Who Doraze), the delightful carol from the animated version. Tonight until Dec. 24; visit website for schedule. Tickets start at $24. Balboa Park. Autumn Fest & Plant Sale. Live entertainment, craft vendors, gardening workshops, kids’ activities, plant sales and more. 10 am-3 pm. $3-$5; ages 2 & under free. The Water Conservation Garden, 12122 Cuyamaca College Dr. West, El Cajon. www The Color Run Dream Tour. Experience the happiest 5K on the planet! High-energy music, an all-new Lay’s Poppables Foam Zone and Dream Wall, giant unicorns, photo ops and tons of color! 9 am. SDCCU Stadium, Mission Valley. Register at www Day Out with Thomas: The Friendship Tour. See page 46.

sunday | 5 Daylight Saving Time Ends – Set Clocks Back One Hour! Fall Family Festival at San Diego Children’s Discovery Museum. Featuring animal education presentations, a petting zoo, music by Hullabaloo, garden exploration, games and bounce houses, a bubble party and a woodshop building activity. 9:30 am-3 pm. $10; ages 12 & under free; $1 per ticket for some activities. 320 N. Broadway, Escondido. FREE Carlsbad Village Faire. Hundreds of unique vendor booths, an international food court, entertainment and a children’s area. 8 am-4 pm. Grand Ave., from Carlsbad Blvd. to Jefferson St. FREE Fall Back Festival. See page 47.

monday | 6 619.320.4942 | | 5178 Japatul Spur, Alpine Children’s Nature Retreat Foundation is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization

50 • • November 2017

Visit the Children’s Nature Retreat, a serene, ranch-style retreat where you can come face to face with more than 100




Share the joy of music with your family this holiday season.

Experience one of the most cherished holiday movies of all time like you’ve never seen it before: It’s a Wonderful Life — in Concert. You know the story: struggling Bedford Falls hero George Bailey discovers, through the timely intervention of his Guardian Angel Clarence on Christmas Eve, that he’s the “richest man in town.” Now this timeless classic will be accompanied by the San Diego Symphony performing Dimitri Tiomkin’s richly sentimental score LIVE.


Who doesn’t love holiday music? Gathering together as a family, listening to timeless classics and singing along to your favorite carols are traditions everyone enjoys! In one short afternoon concert, you’ll see and hear the Symphony perform many of the classic Christmas carols…and we might even get a visit from a certain jolly North Pole resident!


November 2017 • •


Do you want your child to appear on the

2018 Cover Kids Search

cover of San Diego Family Magazine?

Christian was one of the 2017 Cover Kids Winners!

SDFM is looking for six children ages 2-11 and one multiples combo to appear on the cover of a future issue of San Diego Family Magazine or our annual Out & About family adventure publication.

Enter online at: Visit our website for complete rules and more information, or call 619-685-6970.

Deadline is January 31, 2018 (Online entries must be received by 11:59 p.m. on this date. Mail-in entries must be postmarked by this date.)

Contest open to all San Diego County residents. Visit our website to enter contest online or print out the mail-in registration form. A $25 registration fee per entry ($35 for multiples category) must accompany a recent high quality photo, used to determine finalists (photo will not be returned). Submitted photos of 25 finalists from each category (100 total) will be displayed at: Category finalists will be invited to a judging event to help determine contest winners. A portion of the proceeds will be donated to the Birch Aquarium at Scripps and the Special Needs Resource Foundation of San Diego.

Thank you to our sponsors:

Calendar • November domesticated livestock from around the globe, and have fun with interactive presentations. Open daily, 10 am-4 pm. $15-$25; under 2 free. By appointment only. 5178 Japatul Spur, Alpine.; 619320-4942.

tuesday | 7 The Veterans Museum at Balboa Park. View a collection of memorabilia, artifacts and artwork from the Civil War to the present. Tues.-Sun., 10 am-4 pm. $2-$5; active-duty military and children under 12 free.

wednesday | 8 EcoVivarium Living Museum. See reptiles, amphibians and arthropods, and participate in hands-on encounters with animal ambassadors. Wed.-Fri., noon-5 pm; Sat. & Sun., 10 am-4:30 pm. $8-$10. 136 S. Juniper St., Escondido.

thursday | 9 MOPA’s Juried Youth Exhibition: Defining Boundaries highlights the work of local students, grades K-12, that explores the theme of “boundaries” through photography and video. Through Feb. 27; visit website for hours and admission. Museum of Photographic Arts, Balboa Park.

friday | 10 FREE In the Park Series: Get Crafty. Let your creativity soar with family activities. 10 am-noon. Community Park, 13094 Civic Center Dr., Poway. “Down the Rabbit Hole.” Mythbusters alumni Kari Byron, Tory Belleci and Grant Imahara use their scientific sleuth skills as they head “Down The Rabbit Hole” to uncover weird and wonderful happenings from science, history and pop culture. 7:30 pm. Balboa Theatre, 868 Fourth Ave., downtown San Diego. Tickets at

saturday | 11 Veterans Day FREE San Diego Veterans Day Parade. Salute our nation’s heroes at this annual parade with this year’s theme, “A Tribute to Heroes at Home” that honors veterans’

52 • • November 2017

Veterans Day Celebration at USS Midway Museum. Pay tribute to our military heroes at this annual event that includes the NBC 7 & Telemundo 20 Salute to Service Festival, live entertainment, Kidz Zone, giveaways and more. Included with museum admission; military, veterans and their families free. 910 N. Harbor Dr., downtown San Diego.

Flip Fabrique. Be spellbound by a highenergy circus show featuring this Quebecbased troupe of acrobats that is sure to entertain young and old alike. 7:30 pm. $25$60. California Center for the Arts, Escondido, 340 Escondido Blvd.

All Aboard the

FREE Escondido Tamale Festival. Celebrate tamales and all the great Latin foods that have become iconic staples of California’s culture. 11 am-5 pm. Also, attend a Veterans Day ceremony at the “Wall of Courage” from 10-11 am. Grape Day Park, downtown Escondido. FREE San Marcos Veterans Day Ceremony. 9-11 am. Helen Bougher Memorial Park, 1243 Borden Rd. www FREE Holiday Craft Bazaar. 9 am-3 pm. Salvation Army San Diego Citadel, 4170 Balboa Ave., San Diego. www

NORTH POLE LIMITED! Meet Santa, Sing Carols, Eat Cookies, & Sip Hot Cocoa! Trains depart from the Campo Depot every Friday PSRM Campo, CA RTH PO & Saturday North Pole Limited! ROUND TRIP December 1-23 LI MIT ED DEC 1-23 • 5 & 7:00PM at 5 & 7pm. LE

FREE Veterans Day Ceremony in Poway. Join VFW Post 7907 and the Poway Veterans Park Committee for this annual ceremony. 11 am. Veterans Park, 14134 Midland Rd.

FREE Christmas Arts, Crafts & Vintage Market. Browse more than 80 artisans selling American handmade crafts and fine art. Also, pony rides, face painting, live music, free hayrides with Santa (Nov. 24 & 25) and more. Today, tomorrow, Nov. 24-26, 9 am-4 pm. Bates Nut Farm, 15954 Woods Valley Rd., Valley Center.


contributions to their communities and country. 11 am. Along N. Harbor Dr., downtown San Diego. For the parade route, visit



During the first two weekends. Pacific Southwest Railway Museum 750 Depot St, Campo, CA • 619-465-7776


A hristmas arol








NOV 29 DEC 24

November 2017 • •





1:26 PM

Calendar • November FREE Veterans Day Ceremony in Solana Beach. Featuring the Camp Pendleton Young Marines as color guard, the Santa Fe Christian School Band, a special guest speaker and more. 11 amnoon. La Colonia Park, 715 Valley Ave.



FREE Liberty Station Band Review. Performances by more than 10 Southern California high school marching bands, a military salute plus a festival with food trucks, live music and entertainment. The bands will march around Liberty Station and perform for a panel of professional judges in front of the Dick Laub NTC Command Center. 10 am-4 pm. www







FREE Holiday Harvest Kumeyaay Style. Take this guided walk and learn about sage/chaparral plants and animals that were part of the Native American’s traditional fall feast. Today & Nov. 25, 8:30-10 am. Meet by the flag poles at the Kumeyaay Campground Entry Station. Mission Trails Regional Park, Two Father Junipero Serra Trail, Santee.

’ ‘ n Seas

sunday | 12 FREE The Old Globe’s Christmas Tree Lighting. Witness the annual ceremony on the Globe’s Copley Plaza that includes a performance by the cast of Dr. Seuss’s How the Grinch Stole Christmas! plus a holiday snowfall. 6 pm. Reservations required.; 619-23-GLOBE.

e Music uba Santa • Crafts • Liv

Festive Decor • Sc

From December 1 to 31, Birch Aquarium at Scripps is transformed into a holiday wonderland full of SEAsonal activities for the whole family.

“DeepSeeVR: Orca 360.” Virtually swim with killer whales at SeaWorld courtesy of this film that uses VR (virtual reality) technology and stereoscopic 360-degree video. Showing daily; visit website for park hours and admission. Interstate 5, exit SeaWorld Dr., San Diego. www “Elf The Musical, Jr.” See Nov. 3. “Tuck Everlasting, The Musical.” See Nov. 3.



54 • • November 2017

Frida and Me. Children can check out this educational exhibit about the inventiveness and power of artist Frida Kahlo’s work. Mon., Tues., Thurs.-Sun.; visit website for hours. Included with admission. The San Diego Museum of Art, Balboa Park.

tuesday | 14 FREE Family Read & Play Day. Story time, play time with the imagination playground and a free book for children, ages 5 & under. 10-11 am. Rolando Rm., The Salvation Army Ray & Joan Kroc Corps Community Center, 6845 University Ave., San Diego. Don’t forget to call to confirm dates, times and admission prices.

wednesday | 15 Game Masters: The Exhibition. This exhibit showcases the world’s greatest video game designers, from the arcade era to today’s console and online game technology. Through Jan. 15; visit website for hours and admission. Fleet Science Center, Balboa Park.

thursday | 16 Rady Children’s Ice Rink at Liberty Station. Don’t miss Opening Night’s ice skating show, hot chocolate, holiday vendors, goodies and family-friendly activities. 5:309:30 pm. Rink open until Jan. 7, 10 am-10 pm. $12-$14 includes skates; opening night, $10. Net proceeds benefit the Rady Children’s Hospital’s Peckham Center for Cancer & Blood Disorders. FREE Family Arts & Literacy Connection Series: American Jazz, Basquiat and Calder. Starts at 6:30 pm at the Rolando Room with a performance by The Rob Thorsen Jazz Quartet followed by art-making that celebrates two of America’s renowned artists. The Salvation Army Kroc Center, 6605 University Ave., San Diego. 619-282-7599, ext. 114.

“Unshelved” Family Day. Uncover the hidden wonders of the San Diego Natural History Museum’s vast collections as you explore the new exhibit, Unshelved: Cool Stuff from Storage, with crafts and activities. 11 am-3 pm. Free with admission. Holidays at LEGOLAND California Resort. Live entertainment, twinkling lights and festive cheer await guests during this annual celebration. Enjoy the nightly lighting of the park’s LEGO Christmas tree. Today until Jan. 1; visit for hours and admission. KPBS Kids Workshops: Curious George. Learn about the plant cycle with George and take home a seed to grow your own food. Workshops at 10 & 11 am. Free with museum admission. For ages 3 & up. San Diego Children’s Discovery Museum, 320 N. Broadway, Escondido. Traditional Santa Photos at Seaport Village. Head down to the East Plaza Gazebo and bring your best smile! Today until Dec. 24; visit website for complete schedule. Photo packages available for purchase. Pets are welcome. 849 W. Harbor Dr., downtown San Diego. East County Thanksgiving Community Outreach. Join Newbreak Church East County as they provide you all the fixings for a Thanksgiving meal to prepare for your family at home. 10 am-3 pm. Everyone is welcome to register and partake in this Thanksgiving feast. 470 N. Mollison, El Cajon. To receive a Thanksgiving meal box or to volunteer, visit

HAVE YOUR BIRTHDAY PARTY AT THE FLEET • Admission to the Fleet. • 100 ‘do-touch’ exhibits. • Scavenger hunt.

FREE Craft Fair at Lindbergh Schweitzer Elementary. 9 am-3 pm. 4133 Mt. Albertine Ave., San Diego. lindbergh-schweitzer.

• Private decorated room with two party hosts.

• Food packages available.

saturday | 18

FREE Harvest Market. This event offers arts and crafts vendors selling handmade items and holiday gifts. 10 am-3 pm. San Elijo Recreation Center, 1105 Elfin Forest Rd., San Marcos.

Parent’s Nite Out at Elite Gymnastics Academy: Thanksgiving. Kids, ages 4 & up, have a great time with gymnastics, games and lots of play! 6-10 pm. $20. Register online. 1817 John Towers Ave., El Cajon.

“The Nutcracker.” Neisha’s Dance & Music Academy, in collaboration with Chula Vista Ballet, brings you this holiday classic. 2 & 6 pm. $25-$27. Ruth Chapman Theatre, Eastlake High School, 1120 Eastlake Pkwy., Chula Vista.

friday | 17 FREE Holiday Lighting Celebration in Santee. Tree lighting ceremony (6:15 pm), crafts, snow sledding, photos with Santa, live music, costumed characters and more. 5:30-8:30 pm. Santee Trolley Square, 9884 Mission Gorge Rd.

• Goodie bags. • Scientist lab coat to keep.

• Prices start at $300. Minimum 15 children.

BOOK YOUR PARTY TODAY! (619)685-5761

November 2017 • •


Calendar • November FREE Greet Autumn! Enjoy cooler temperatures, the artful colors of deciduous trees and flora, and the grand scope of nature on this morning walk with an MTRP trail guide. 9:30-11 am. Meet inside Visitor Center. Mission Trails Regional Park, One Father Junipero Serra Trail, San Carlos.

Before you gobble up all your favorite Thanksgiving treats, wobble out and burn some calories while helping support our community. ‘Trot’ your stuff at these local turkey trots on Thanksgiving morning, Nov. 23. San Diego Run for the Hungry. The scenic 5K and 10K run/walk starts at Broadway Circle in front of Westfield Horton Plaza, and goes through East Village and the historic Gaslamp Quarter. 7-10 am. $36-$61. Proceeds benefit the hunger-relief programs of the San Diego Food Bank. Register at Pacific Marine Credit Union O’side Turkey Trot. The 10K and 5K run kicks off at 6:55 am and 8:05 am respectively, starting on historic Hwy. 101 at the Civic Center and finishing on The Strand just south of the Oceanside Pier. Also featuring a 5K walk, 1-mile kids’ runs for ages 7-12, Tiny Turkey Trot quarter-mile runs for ages 6 & under, and a costume contest. Register at Coronado 5K Turkey Trot. A customized medal for participants plus awards in different age categories. 8 am. $15-$40. Register by Nov. 20. Net proceeds benefit Rady Children’s Hospital. Tidelands Park, 2000 Mullinex Dr. Father Joe’s Villages Thanksgiving Day 5K. Join more than 7,500 walkers and runners bright and early at Spreckels Organ Pavilion in Balboa Park to help bring an end to homelessness in San Diego. Includes a post-race festival

56 • • November 2017

sunday | 19 Global Winter Wonderland. View large luminescent, handcrafted lanterns inspired by international landscapes around the world. Also, check out Cirque du Soleil-level acrobatics, more than 35 carnival rides, international

cuisine, shopping, games and holidaythemed activities. Today until Jan. 7; visit website for complete schedule and tickets. SDCCU Stadium, Mission Valley. FREE Encinitas Fall Festival. Vendors, children’s rides, food and entertainment. 9 am-4 pm. S. Coast Hwy. 101, between D & J Sts. FREE Mother Goose Parade. Bands, clowns, equestrians, floats and more at this annual event in El Cajon. 1 pm. For parade route, visit

monday | 20

Encinitas Turkey Trot & Food Drive with live music, a costume contest, kids’ area and more. 7:30-10:30 am. $35$45. Del Mar’s Family Fun Run. Runners complete a one-mile loop on the dirt track and may even find themselves running alongside a world-class jockey or two. Family-friendly activities plus puppy races conducted by the Helen Woodward Animal Center. 7-9:30 am. Del Mar Racetrack, 2260 Jimmy Durante Blvd. San Diego South Bay Turkey Trot & Food Drive. Choose from three distances: 15K (8 am), 10K (8:05 am) or 5K (8:10 am). Please bring a nonperishable food item to donate to The Salvation Army’s food drive. Rohr Park, 4250 Sweetwater Rd., Bonita. Register at Encinitas Turkey Trot & Food Drive. The course starts and finishes under the worldfamous “Encinitas” sign on the historic Coast Hwy. 101. Prizes will be awarded to the top costumed participants who best display the spirit of Thanksgiving. 10K, 7:30 am; 5K and Costume Division race, 8 am. Benefits the Community Resource Center and the Encinitas Chapter of The American Legion.

FREE Centuries of Opulence: Jewels of India. The exhibit uncovers the original sources of the gems decorating these pieces, their cultural symbolism and the historical tradition of gemology in India. Through March 1. Mon.-Fri., 8 am-4 pm. By appt. only. GIA (Gemological Institute of America) Museum, 5345 Armada Dr., Carlsbad.

tuesday | 21 Sculpture in the Garden. More than 50 works are set against a unique backdrop of rare fruit gardens, tranquil ponds and other natural settings. Open daily, 9 am-5 pm. $8-$14. San Diego Botanic Garden, 230 Quail Gardens Dr., Encinitas.

wednesday | 22 San Diego Jazz Fest showcases an array of traditional jazz, ragtime, swing, Dixieland and rockabilly styles. Tonight until Nov. 26; visit website for complete schedule and tickets. Town & Country San Diego, 500 Hotel Circle North, San Diego.

thursday | 23 Thanksgiving Day Skating by the Sea. Skate to your heart’s content on Hotel del Coronado’s outdoor ice rink that boasts breathtaking views of the Pacific and Coronado Beach. Today until Jan. 1; visit website for complete schedule. $30 includes skate rental. 1500 Orange Ave., Coronado.

Ho ho hang ten. Surfin’ Santa arrives at Seaport Village Saturday, November 25. Join us for PICTURES with Santa on his 6 foot wave, ECO-ORNAMENT making with Birch Aquarium, MUSIC and HOLIDAY CHEER! 1 pm in front of the Pier Café.

Calendar • November Hornblower’s Thanksgiving Buffet Dinner Cruises. 3-5:30 & 3:30-6 pm. Visit website for fees and reservations. Departs from Grape St. Pier, 1800 N. Harbor Dr., downtown San Diego. Thanksgiving Feast at the Zoo. Come on over to the Treetops Banquet Room for a buffet of holiday favorites or indulge in a threecourse meal at Albert’s Restaurant. For details, visit website. Call for reservations. Balboa Park.; 619-557-3964. Thanksgiving Day Buffet at The Shores. Mouthwatering appetizers, delicious main courses, seasonal sides and desserts. 10 am-7 pm. $58 plus tax and gratuity; discounts for ages 12 & under. Call for reservations. 8110 Camino Del Oro, La Jolla. www; 858-456-0600. Have a Sumptuous Thanksgiving at The Del. Savor a lavish buffet dinner with all the trimmings, a special children’s buffet for the little ones plus live music at the Crown Room and the oceanfront Ballroom from noon-6:30 pm. For fees and reservations, visit website. 1500 Orange Ave., Coronado.

friday | 24 Farm Animal Friday. Learn about goats and what we can do with goat milk through story time and a themed activity. 10:3011:30 am. Free with admission. San Diego Children’s Discovery Museum, 320 N. Broadway, Escondido. FREE Christmas Arts, Crafts & Vintage Market. See Nov. 11. Game Masters: The Exhibition showcases the world’s best video game designers, from the arcade era to today’s console and online games.

saturday | 25 FREE Surfin’ Santa’s Arrival at Seaport Village. Sporting board shorts and his favorite Hawaiian tee, Santa will arrive at the San Diego Harbor via watercraft at 1 pm. Delight in a parade along the boardwalk, ornament making for kids, free family photos with Santa, street performances and holiday shopping. 1-5 pm. West Harbor Dr. & Pacific Hwy., downtown San Diego.

THROUGH JAN. 15, 2018



58 • • November 2017

(619) 238-1233 FLEETSCIENCE.ORG

FREE Christmas on the Prado. Christmas tunes and entertainment, tree lighting, an elf contest, nativity scenes, Santa photos and more. 2-9 pm. Spreckels Organ Pavilion & International Cottages, Balboa Park.

Tony/Nov 2017

MEGA PLAY STRUCTURE FREE Country Christmas Tree Lighting in Julian. Plus merry entertainment at Pioneer Park. Festivities start at 2 pm; tree lighting at 6 pm. 2811 Washington St. FREE Village Artisan Faire. Find handmade artisan items, live music and holiday fun! 10 am-4 pm. Main & Elder, downtown Fallbrook.

sunday | 26

Now serving all San Diego 3-1 COMBO TO $140

2-1 COMBO TO $120



The “We do it all” No Stress Party Package for any budget!

From A la carte to invitations and catering! Call or visit the website for details!

FREE Family Discovery Walk. 3-4:30 pm. Visitor Center, Mission Trails Regional


$ 89 Package #1: Jumper, 4 Tables, 32 Chairs $139 Package #2: Jumper, 4 Tables, 32 Chairs, Concession Machine $139 Package #3: 2-1 Combo Jumper, 4 Tables, 32 Chairs $159 Package #4: 3-1 Combo Jumper, 4 Tables, 32 Chairs

(619) 399-5237

*add $50 to any package if generator is needed



November 2017 • •


25 LIVE Lizards, Frogs, Turtles,

Best Kids’ Birthday Party Winner 2015, 2016 & 2017 Best and Top Pick in four categories!

Snakes & Bugs

FUNBelievable Play 11655 Riverside Dr., Unit 155 (River Run Business Park)

OPEN 7 days a week. Suitable for 0–12 yrs. Socks Required.

For most occasions For kids of ALL ages

“Dr. Seuss’s How the Grinch Stole Christmas!” See Nov. 4.

monday | 27

Lakeside, CA 92040

Tel 619-456-2474


Licensed & Insured since 1993 760-722-4446 email:

LEGOLAND California’s Tree Lighting Ceremony. A celebrity guest lights up the world’s tallest LEGO Christmas tree that stands more than 30 feet tall and is made of more than 245,000 forest green DUPLO bricks! Also, entertainment, fireworks and a Santa visit. For details, visit

tuesday | 28

Calendar of availability on website:


come PLAY at

Linda Hawley’s Nature Adventures. This month’s topic: “Early Kumeyaay Life – Finding & Harvesting Food.” 9:30-11:30 am. $10 per child with advance registration. For ages 4 & up. Mission Trails Regional Park’s Visitor Center, One Father Junipero Serra Trail, San Diego.

wednesday | 29

The New Children’s Museum!


Park, One Father Junipero Serra Trail, San Carlos. “Island of Lemurs: Madagascar.” Journey to a remote and wondrous world through this IMAX film and get to know the unique animal residents and their interesting behaviors. Showing daily; visit website for show times and admission. Fleet Science Center, Balboa Park.


there’s always

Calendar • November

Downtown San Diego 619 233 8792


Cygnet Theatre Presents “A Christmas Carol.” Experience this holiday classic adapted from Charles Dickens’ timeless tale. Enjoy original music, puppetry, live sound effects and more. Tonight until Dec. 24; visit website for schedule. Old Town Theatre, 4040 Twiggs St., San Diego. FREE Liberty Station Tree Lighting & Holiday Festivities. See page 46.

Obstacle Course

NEW! - Hello Kitty

NEW! - Tinker Bell Jump

Princess Combo

NEW! - Justice League NEW! - Sesame Street


monday | 30 FREE Tree Lighting in Oceanside. 6-8 pm. Regal Cinema Plaza, 401 Mission Ave.

Clean Units! Insured! Free Delivery & Set-up! Other Interactive Games Available! 15’ H Slide


Disney Cars

Officially Licensed Jumps! Choose From Our Large Selection Such As: Lilo & Stitch, Mickey Mouse, Dora the Explorer, The Lion King, Power Rangers, & Much More! And Now – Our New Licensed 5-n-1 Combos!!

Toy Story

Finding Nemo Frozen

60 • • November 2017

Disney Princess

5-n-1 Licensed Combo Multiple Themes!

For weekly activities, visit Want us to spread the news? Please email and include the name of the event or activity, a brief description, event address, date, time, cost, contact number and website. Submission does not guarantee publication. Deadline for the January issue: December 1.


DENTAL Insurance

Teena’s Custom Crafts

Physicians Mutual Insurance Company

A less expensive way to help get the dental care you deserve If you’re over 50, you can get coverage for about

$1 a day*

Keep your own dentist! NO networks to worry about NO annual or lifetime cap on the cash benefits

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FREE Information Kit

For larger events, rent a Santa Setting! Kid’s Craft Creative, fun parties for kids 2 &


up, in your home, yard or park. Crafts at preschools & camps too!


1-877-308-2834 *Individual plan. Product not available in MN, MT, NH, RI, VT, WA. Acceptance guaranteed for one insurance policy/certificate of this type. Contact us for complete details about this insurance solicitation. This specific offer is not available in CO, NY; call 1-800-969-4781 or respond for similar offer. Certificate C250A (ID: C250E; PA: C250Q); Insurance Policy P150(GA: P150GA; NY: P150NY; OK: P150OK; TN: P150TN) 6096C MB16-NM001Gc

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Birthday Parties, Festivals, Fundraisers, Fire Prevention Events and Parades

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November 2017 • •


Anne Malinoski

Mini Mason Jar Pies Tasty, charming, giftable From holiday parties to hostess gifts, you’ll find endless opportunities to delight your loved ones with these tasty mini pies. The secret to their charm is adorable four-ounce mason jars. Thanks to super thick glass, jars of pie can be stored unbaked in the freezer, then placed directly in the oven when you’re ready for a tiny pie fix.

Photos courtesy of Anne Malinoski

What Makes the Perfect Mini Pie? You decide! Choose your favorite pie filling below, then go to things-to-do/dining-and-recipes for the complete ingredients list and instructions.

Apple: Peel and dice four Granny Smith apples and toss with cinnamon sugar.

Pumpkin: Buy canned pumpkin and follow the simple recipe on the label.

Blueberry: Toss one pint berries with 1/3 c. sugar, 2 Tbs. cornstarch and lemon zest.

Anne Malinoski is a contributing writer and mother of two boys. Making pie is her hobby. She prefers classic double-crust apple.

62 • • November 2017

Is your GATE child bored at school? Are you tired of the homework fight every night? Does your quirky kid struggle to be accepted?

Free Activity

ABACI ARE FUN Saturday November 4 3 - 5 PM

Renaissance Village Academy is a private, non-religious full-time school serving gifted, profoundly gifted, doubly-gifted, and highly motivated children in grades K-8. Our schedule is designed for the working parent (9:15 am -5:15 pm most days), so homework is done with credentialed teachers. Minimum day is Wednesday and every other Friday. ATTENTION PRE-K PARENTS! Is your child “too young” for kindergarten, but ready for school? If she’s at least 4 yrs, 9 mos., consider RVA as an academic alternative for your bright youngster.

Renaissance Village Academy

10625 Scripps Ranch Blvd., Suite A, San Diego, CA 92131 • 858.564.9622

or visit


San Diego Family Magazine November 2017  
San Diego Family Magazine November 2017  

Happy Thanksgiving! A Season of Giving in San Diego.