Lake Balboa

Lake Balboa park in Balboa Lake in Los Angeles is probably my favorite place in town and definitely in my top favorite places ever. I have been coming here since our daughter was born and it is just a  great place to get away from the city.

It is super kid friendly, with wonderful playground and all different ducks and swans to feed in the lake._ebr2882

There is wonderful path around the lake that you can walk or ride a scooter or bicycle on. There is a bike rental shop here and in the summer months, you can rent a boat to relax on. The path around the lake is 1.3 miles long and it is great for small walks or little run.

In the summer months, you see lots of parties and barbecues taking place here. And the sunset in the evening hours is simply breathtaking.

Our daughter enjoys exploring around and meeting all the different animals. It is really one of the few places in LA, where you can connect with nature._ebr2970

Lots of people come here to fish, take photographs and exercise. It is 100% family time when you come to Lake Balboa._ebr2873

Places to check out:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lake_Balboa,_Los_Angeles

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sepulveda_Dam#Lake_Balboa_Park

http://www.laparks.org/aquatic/balboa

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Advertisements

Solvang

Traveling with kids. Always a challenge you would think. No, not really. You just have to do your research and find places that are kid friendly. And, of course have enough distracting items with you so they don’t actually notice they are sitting in a car for 2 hours or more.

We live in Los Angeles so I am always looking for fun day trips for our family to take us away from the traffic and crazy people 🙂 We try to do something new every two weekends or so.

Our latest trip brought us to Solvang, only about 2 hour drive from our home. This is the perfect town to visit with children while adults are also enjoying themselves.

_ebr3046

Solvang is otherwise known as “The Danish Capital of America” and it is really exactly that. Right when you arrive, you feel like you were magically transported to Europe with little shops, restaurants and wine tasting rooms everywhere. There is even a beer garden.

We loved trying the Danish food and visited Red Viking restaurant that also had children’s menu. We then visited 3 toy stores around the main promenade and got some cotton candy in the local candy shop. However, everybody’s favorite spot was the Carivintas Winery, not only because of the super tasty Triple Threat 2015 red wine that has hints of jalapeno but mostly because of how children friendly the place is.

winery-solvang

While we were sipping away on some wine, Scarlett was playing at the corner kid table where they had some LEGO setup for children as well as books and coloring pages. She did not want to leave even after we were done wine tasting. This winery is also super pet friendly and their wines feature labels of adopted dogs and cats from the area.

We also visited the QuickSilver Miniature Horse Ranch that is about 7 minute drive from downtown Solvang. Children can see miniature horses here and their stables and enjoy running around the farm. quicksilver-ranch

 

After a full day walking around, we were absolutely exhausted and happy to head back home. There was so much to do! We have to come back and explore the town in more detail.

There is numerous hotels right downtown so I it would also make for great weekend getaway.

Places to check out:

http://carivintas.com/

http://www.solvangusa.com/directory/quick-silver-miniature-horse-ranch/

http://www.theredvikingrestaurant.com/

 

This Morning

This morning I got myself a special treat. Tea with whole milk and honey. When was the last time you did that? Well, I don’t know…but I know when was the last time I did that. When I was a kid. I kid you not. I am sure of that. And the reason I did that was this:
As I was walking into the studio this morning ( I know, looser, working on Saturday),
I heard tiny steps behind me right when I entered the building. And then a small voice calling “Miss!”
I turned around and caught the door just in time not to squash a little girl following me. I looked down and said hello.
The tiny creature looked up at me, stretched out her hand, bowed a little and said in a very firm voice “Hello there, my name is Tina Wonderous, how are you doing today?” Her hand shake was firm, she was starring right in my eyes and I was thinking what is going on. This little girl doesn’t look like she is trying to sell me any candy, so why that very professional and stiff manner. Then I noticed a little sign on the door. Anyone arriving for casting, please wait downstairs until we call your name.

gillian_web
I looked at the tiny creature and realized that she must be here trying for a role. That’s why the trained voice, that’s why the professional manner, that’s why…she barely resembled a little girl. I felt like I was meeting with an executive producer of Warner Brothers Studios.  Tiny, voice, tiny body, but very adult person was really standing in front of me.
You know, I was very angry that I had to work this weekend. But what about this little girl? Shouldn’t she be having a play day? Shouldn’t she have clothes covered with colors from painting something fun, and cheeks dirty from chocolates or something equally sweet and delicious?
No, here she was trying to make the best possible impression on me, because who knows if I could possibly make her famous.
Well, I couldn’t. I did have the urge for like a split second to tell her: YOU GOT THE ROLE little girl! It seemed fun. Plus, I would really like to make her that happy. But it would be cruel. I have no idea how old she was. But I am pretty sure her childhood consists of rehearsals, auditions, make-up and diets. Not much of a fun childhood.
So, I went upstairs and made myself the sweet treat. For her. Cause, at least one of us should remain a kid little longer, I thought….