Summer… Finally!

Bi(n)g Cat

Bi(n)g Cat

This weekend it finally felt like summer… Now I know other cities have way more to complain about weather wise, but it has been a really cool spring, so it was nice to finally have a hot weekend!  The kids and I took full advantage of the warm weather and it got me thinking that I should share some of my ideas for free time fun.

Bing powered lift

Bing powered lift

We decided to check out the Los Angeles Discovery Cube this weekend.   We have been to the Orange County Discovery Cube and really loved it so we were excited to visit the newer L.A. version.  It’s way closer to us in Burbank, located in the Hansen Dam complex with a large amount of free parking.  The building is large with plenty of room to get hands on with the exhibits… The problem is that there is way less to do than the O.C. version.  Geared to the 10 and under crowd, we were able to see and do everything in just over a hour and there wasn’t much Bing felt like revisiting.  Right now (until 6/30) they have a special $10 admission price (it increases to about $16 for adults, $13 kids when the deal expires, you can get a family season pass for around $99)… at the special rate it is worth checking out, but if you are paying full price make the journey to Orange County and get your moneys worth.

Making mountains

Making mountains

Playing the super market game... We were caught on their "winners camera"

Playing the super market game… We were caught on their “winners camera”

Windy fun

Windy fun

Let me warn you, this idea is not healthy… But fun isn’t always healthy ;)   I noticed this weekend that there is a place were everyone is happy… The doughnut shop!  It’s a fun adventure (especially if you have a shop walking or cycling distance from your house) to have a breakfast at the local doughnut shop.  It’s affordable (usually not more than $10 for 3 of us) and it brings a smile to the kids face.  Also it gives you some time to sit together and chat… Bing and I like to discuss the cars we see drive by as we sit outside and down chocolate sprinkle covered goodness!

Go nuts for doughnuts

Go nuts for doughnuts

 

I know this tip may not be popular… But sign up for spam!  What I mean is join the mailing lists of local places you enjoy.  I signed up for AMF Bowlings mailing list and now I get tipped off to all the deals… A week or two ago they had 2-hours of bowling with shoe rental for $10 per person!  Bing and I bowled 7 games… Or to absolute bowling exhaustion!  They had fun music, black lights and disco balls spinning and a full menu of food and drink if you decide you’re hungry.  We also get specials from Sky High and Groupon is great for local activities at a discount.  Also don’t forget restaurants, kids faves Souplantation and Hometown Buffet both have email clubs that offer discounts on a weekly basis.

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This past weekend Bing got it in his head that he wanted to have a picnic… This was a great idea!  First it offered us the chance to prepare the meal together.  We planned and then made our meal… with Bing doing most of the work.  We made some sandwiches, poured some nuts into a container, grabbed some chips and drinks and put them into a reusable shopping bag.  A football and beach mat were the only additional items we needed!  We walked to a local park (which is more of a field) and set up.  It was an amazing evening of food and play outside away from TV and tablets.  Even if it’s just in the backyard, a picnic is a great way to have some together time.

No picnic basket required

No picnic basket required

Playing a little old fashioned catch

Playing a little old fashioned catch

My final tip for this post is to check your cards… Kids get random gift cards throughout the year and sometimes they get put aside and forgotten about.  Turn those old cards into adventures.  This weekend Bing decided to use the Baskin-Robbins   gift card Grandma and Wendy had given him… So we combined the cool treat with a bike ride.  We pedaled around the neighborhood before routing to the local B-R and having a “Hey I’m a big boy who rode his bike in the street” celebration sundae!

OK, those are my summertime tips for now… but I’m sure as the warm weather continues I’ll have more.

And since I’m posting, Here’s some music I’m digging right now:

Hermitude – “Through The Roof”

 

Cold War Kids – “First”

Third Eye Blind – “Everything Is Easy”

Andrew McMahon In The Wilderness – “Cecilia And The Satellite”

Rock on, Jack

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