Monday, December 23, 2013

The Pirates Kidnapped Santa! | @PiratesDinnerCA #Giveaway #Review

It is no secret that I love the ocean and everything that goes with it.  Did you know that I absolutely LOVE the romanticizing of pirates as well?  My family attends Pirate Faires on occasion and yes, we all dress up to get into the spirit of the event.  I guess I like the idea of dressing up and pirates can be sexy and fun!  The kids love the sword play and dressing up in general.

I had been wanting to take my family to Pirates: Dinner Adventure on Beach Blvd next to Knotts and Medieval Times for awhile.  It gets hard to squeeze new things in when we enjoy the old things so much.  I was approached by Pirates Dinner Adventure to come review their new holiday show and low and behold, I had a free night available.

We arrived an hour early because they let us know a head of time that free appetizers would be available until the show started.  Great!  I ordered myself a drink off the menu to get into the mood.  I chose the "Drunken Sailor" which was a Hurricane like drink.  VERY yummy!

We checked out the gift stands and of course found several items that my children would LOVE.  Pirate Hello Kitty was my daughter's favorite.


My son loves anything swords or guns so he kept his eye on the great selection of replica firearms/swords that they had for sale.   We settled for a plastic light up sword and a pirate princess bracelet that I also loved.

The show was about to start but where was the stage?  The lobby held a few surprises as the bar became a stage and the rigging above us became a upside down walkway.

Cannons fired and we were captured by pirates!  These pirates had actually arrived to steal all of Santa Clauses gifts and he couldn't let any of us go since we had witnessed the crime.  We were broken up into different colored pirates and led away to their ship.

WOW!  The ship was awesome!  They had a full pirate ship that took up the whole middle of the arena that was surrounded by water.

The rigging and planks surrounded us and were used by the crew through out the show.   I was asked by my pirate to help out in the show and wave our colors.  Of course, I agreed.

We had a choice of food,  we chose beef skewers and vegetable soup while the kids had chicken nuggets, salad and mashed potatoes.  Soda was brought in pitchers and refilled through out the show.  Dessert was a rich chocolate brownie with ice-cream on top.


The crew that had kidnapped us were in hot water with their captain since he had no knowledge of them stealing Santa Claus.  He wasn't the heartless soul that everyone made pirates out to be.  With the support of his wife "Treasure"  he told the crew to release us/them.

They were even made to make some of our children Honorary Pirates!

This didn't sit well with some of the crew and mutiny was at hand.  There were fierce sword fights, romantic arobatics, fist fights and daring games of skill.   The show was exciting, had great audience participation, a fun storyline, and yummy food and drinks!

The show didn't disappoint us and we loved all the action!  I would recommend the show to any pirate lover or just someone that enjoys fun and entertainment.  For more pictures from the show, check them out on my Facebook page album.


Pirates Dinner Adventure
7600 Beach Boulevard
Buena Park, CA 90620

DISCLAIMER:  My family received tickets for the purpose of this review.  All thoughts and ideas are my own.  Do not use any photos without permission.

Sunday, December 22, 2013

Gaming On the Go: flarePlay! #SPECIAL OFFER | #Review #ad

This is a sponsored post for review.  All thoughts/ideas are my own.

If you are anything like my family, you have at least 2-3 gaming consoles lying around with a TON of cables!  I allow my children to play games for rewards in school and a little down time on the weekends.  What drives me crazy is trying to keep all of the game disks in an orderly area with the correct consoles and seriously, it gets messy.

I hadn't thought there were any other options really until I was offered a chance to review a new way of gaming(okay, yes my hubby and I enjoy it too... shhhh).   There is a new system that is called flarePlay.  Instead of a large box that takes up a lot of room with even more room for the discs... the system fits into your hand.   The game console is wireless and is of a standard size with the familiar buttons of other systems.


The way that flarePlay works is similar to Netflix.  You pay a monthly fee of $10 and you have unlimited instant games where ever you go as long as you have wifi and HDMI capability.  This is standard of any TV newer than 5 years.

There is a small setup that is necessary to start where you enter in the WiFi password and login information and you get the main screen with over 100 games!  It even keeps track of your favorites so they are easily accessible.

I tried a few different types of games available.  The first one I tried was "7 Wonders of the Ancient World".  It is similar to "Bejeweled"8 and other similar games.  LOVED it!

Since I also like RPG(Role Playing Games) I also tried a fun game about trying to find a lost sister and jewels on a secret Island called, "Alex Gordon".   My son will have fun playing this as it is similar to Super Marion Brothers.

When I saw that there was a "LEGO: Harry Potter" game... I couldn't resist!  Yes, I am a geek and love ALL Harry Potter.  It was entertaining while being challenging and otherwise, my son could kick my butt playing it.  I will practice while he is asleep so I don't embarrass myself.

There are so many different choices for games, it seems like a little bit for everyone.

There are some downsides to the program.  They are still adding to their list of games so you are limited to 100+ games.  You also need a good WiFi with a HDMI connector on your TV.  Good thing is that if you take advantage of the offer below, you will get a free gaming console ($99 value) for FREE if you sign up before 12/31/13.*

WHATS NEW:  The new games for this month include, LEGO Batman(5-8), LEGO Harry Potter, H.A.W.X.2, Assassins Creed 2, and Rabbids Go Home.


Pay $30 for 3 months of flarePlay service and the the microconsole($99 value) FREE!*

*Offer expires 12/31/13.   Offer includes one free micro-console ($99 value) with 3 month $30.00 flarePlay basic game tier subscription.  Higher flarePlay tiers, rental services, add'l features, add'l devices, taxes and other fees are extra.  After 3 months, your credit card WILL automatically be charged the $9.99 monthly flarePlay subscription fee.

If the service is cancelled between days 31-90, the micro-console must be returned in the original packaging to:

New Business
1400 Lake Hearn Drive
Atlanta, GA 30319

Otherwise, a $50 disconnection fee will be charged.

flarePlay is available only to California residents 18 years or older.  3Mbps or higher downstream Internet, in-home WiFi, and HD TV set with HDMI port required.  Uninterrupted or error-free service is not guarnateed.  A valid credit card is required for billing.  Limit one offer per unique email address per account.  Offer not combinable with other flarePlay offers, promotions or discounts.  Other restrictions may apply.

**30 day money back guarantee entitles you to a refund of the first month subscription fee, device charges and taxes.  You mus claim refund within the first 30 days of service and the micro-console must be returned in the original packaging to:

New Business
1400 Lake Hearn Drive
Atlanta, GA 30319

For more information or to place your order, please visit their website at

DISCLAIMER:  This is a sponsored post.  I received compensation for reviewing this product.  All thoughts and ideas are my own.  Do not use any photos without permission.

Disney On Ice: Rockin Ever Afer, My View | @DisneyOnIce #RockinEverAfter

This week my family got to go to Disney On Ice for the first time.  As a hockey playing, ice-skating family, we were in our element.  Seeing our favorite Disney characters as graceful ice-dancers, couldn't make it much better.

This year, Brave, my favorite out of the recent Disney movies, was added to the lineup and I couldn't wait to see what they did with the characters on ice.  What heritage are they going to add to the story?  We would have to see.

The show started out in a Disney's Got Talent search with Mickey, Minnie, Donald and Goofy as the hosts.  Pinocchio was the first on stage.  While he was fun to watch, telling lies always gets the better of him!  

Following Pinocchio, Cinderellas step-sisters tried to convince the panel that they had talent...  somewhere.  

The Little Mermaid followed and blew the sisters out of the water with Ariels singing and acrobatics that included aerial feats.   I loved how they incorporated the main parts of the movie and made the water come to life.

Rapunzel, Flynn Ryder and friends joined the stage next with their "I've Got A Dream" sequence followed  by a hilarious scene with Maximus.  I love that frying pan!

The time had come for Merida of Brave to show off how a princess really acts.  The Irish dancing on ice was  something I had never imagined.  The fireworks that accompany Merida was a favorite with my kids.

Belle and Beast showed us that love conquers all, even death.  They learned to love and the spell was broken.  What is in the inside counts more than the outside.  

My family really enjoyed this show and we can't wait to see the next one!  The graceful dancers and familiar story lines kept the children and adults glued to the ice.  Even though we were relatively close to the ice, it was not cold.  The costumes were especially colorful and showcased the dancers perfectly.  

I highly recommend the show to anyone that loves Disney.  Dancing on ice takes a talent that goes beyond the regular figure skating and now my kids look forward to the Olympic skaters even more.

To see more photos from the show, please check out my album on Facebook.  

DISCLAIMER:  I was given tickets to Disney On Ice:  Rockin Ever After for the purpose of this review.  All thoughts and ideas are my own.  Do not use any pictures without permission.

Saturday, December 21, 2013

The Winter of the Whales? What Did We See? | @HarborBreezeC #WhaleWatching

Gray Whale season has just started and something astounding has been occurring!  The whale watching boats have see a large variety of whales that are not common to this part of the year!

So far, in the last month, the boats have reported seeing Orca's, Fin whales, Humpback whales, a Sperm whale, and Blue whales!  This is incredible!  Usually this time of year, the Gray whales migrating from Alaska to give birth in the warm Mexican waters.  This trip takes about 3 months to complete each fall/winter.

When I got the call to see if myself and other media outlets would like to go on  a whale watching excursion on the Triumphant, I couldn't pass up the opportunity!   The Triumphant, which is the newest and fastest whale watching boat in California and it can bring us to see the whales and other sealife much quicker to enjoy them longer.

As we rounded the light house, we were greeted by a thousand Common and Pacific White-Sided Dolphins.  The boat was surrounded by splashes and we could see many families had young babies. Sooo cute!

Seeing so many dolphin's pumped up our blood and got us excited on what we might see next.  Captain Dan (the Whale Man) informed us that there were two marine biologists on board that would let us know all about the marine life.

I lost count of how many dolphins we had seen as we came upon a colony of sea lions.  The unique way of floating together made it look like a school of sharks.  They stick their flippers in the air that makes them look like shark fins.  The sea lions do this to warm up their bodies by letting their flippers absorb the heat from the sunlight.

We were sticking close to the shore along the PV Peninsula towards Point Vicente.  We were told that the Gray whales round the point and there were a group of whale counting volunteers that count them as they pass by.  Last year they counted more than any other year in the 30 years that they have done the census.

As we went through another super-pod(thousands) of dolphins, we get the word of a whale spotted up ahead.  It was a young Gray whale probably making it's way down for it's first or second solo trip.

We followed the shy whale for about a half hour and continued on to find more.  It didn't take long to find another much larger Gray Whale right in front of Point Vicente. This whale was consistent in it's pattern and we had many chances to get photos.

Soon it was time to start heading back to the harbor.  A few of the facts that I learned about the Gray whales included:

  • They migrate 12,430 miles round-trip from Alaska to Mexico
  • They are often covered with parasites and other organisms that make their backs and snouts look like a crusty ocean rock
  • They are Baleen whales which means they filter out krill through a comb-like strainer instead of teeth(Called whalebone, it was used for corsets and umbrella ribs in the old days)
  • They are no longer on the endangered species list as of 1994
  • Baleen whales have a double blow hole which often causes a heart shaped spout
While we didn't see Orcas, Sperm whales, Fin whales, Humpbacks, or Blue Whales, we loved seeing the Gray whales, dolphins (who are toothed whales), sea lions and even a Mola Mola(sunfish).  I consider the day a great success!

Oh, on the very next boat out on the Triumphant, they spotted "Mango" the Sperm whale!  I wish I had been there!  

Tips for whale-watching:
  • Check Harbor Breeze on Facebook, they often have great deals
  • Dress warmly
  • Bring binoculars and/or camera
  • Toys to keep young ones busy while waiting
Every whale watching trip is different and I never get bored of seeing these majestic animals.  If you have not been out to see them, please bring your family for un-comparable memories.

If you would like to make reservations, go to their website.  

DISCLAIMER:  I received tickets for my family to attend a media whale watching trip.  All thoughts and ideas are my own.  Do not use any photos without permission.

Friday, December 20, 2013

Ring in the New Year at Knotts! | @Knotts #KnottsNYE #Giveaway

The new year is approaching and with a new year means new traditions.  Have you decided on your New Years Eve plans yet?  Did you know that Knotts Berry Farm throws a HUGE New Years Eve party every year?

There is special one-night only entertainment that gives families of all ages a fun new way to ring in the new year.  Check out what is on this years agenda!

  • Stilt walkers
  • Party hats and noisemakers for everyone
  • Midnight Party on the Midway
  • Live entertainment
This year, the Knott's Sky Cabin which will be dressed up with special lighting effects will drop the during the final moments of 2013 from the "K" Tower.  Following the drop, fireworks will light up the night sky!

What else can you expect?  Live entertainment of course!

  • Krazy Kirk and the Hillbillies- they will leave you toe-tapping and hands clapping to the best musical comedy show that will be at the Wilderness Dance Hall stage
  • The Reflexx is the ultimate 80's party cover band!  Depeche Mode, Flock of Seagulls, A-Ha, and more!
  • DJ REESO will be at the Calico Square spinning high energy music.
  • Dana Daniels comedy/magic act which combines good clean comedy, magic and a psychic parrot
  • Sharp Turn Ahead, a teen duo with acoustics and keys,  will headline at the Camp Snoopy Theater with their own originals and cover some of todays pop hits
  • Salsa Dancing with Louie Angon, DJ JC and Snoopy will be at Fiesta Plaza waiting for you to show off your HOT dance moves
  • Do you like good Country music?  The Dance Hall party is for boot scootin and line dancing
  • It's Christmas, Snoopy will present encore performances into the evening in their graceful performance on ice
  • Don't miss Snoopy's Magical Nights of Lights as Camp Snoopy has thousands of lights and music starting at dusk

All Knotts New Year's Eve Celebration is included with the regular daytime admission.

Park hours:  10am to 1am.

Season Passes: are available and you can purchase them for only 6 payments of $13!

Visit or download the Knott's mobile app for your phone.  If you take pictures of your special night, be sure to tag #KnottsNYE and let your friends see the fun on Twitter @Knotts and Instagram @knottsberryfarm


DISCLAIMER:  I was received tickets from GigaSavvy to enjoy New Years Eve at Knotts.  All thoughts and ideas are my own.  I have permission to use all the copyrighted photos for my posts.  Do not use and photos without permission.

Thursday, December 19, 2013

Snowy Holidays at LEGOLAND CA! | @LegolandCA #HolidaySnowDays

We entered the park through the special entrance that is for hotel guests for our first glimpse of the park.  The SEALIFE Aquarium sits to the left of the Main Gates with the Hotel to the right.  You can literally throw Lego bricks and hit front gate from the hotel!

We headed to the Snowplay area where there were two areas that grabbed our attention.  The free snow-tubing area had fresh snow and plenty of runs that were run smoothly and quickly by competent staff.

Next to the Snow-tubing area, was an area that allowed everyone to build snow people, sled, build snow forts with Lego brick molds and our favorite, a target practice for throwing snowballs.  My four year old thought this area was great especially when the staff made perfectly round snowballs using a snowball tool(I must get one for the mountains this year!).  

Surrounding the Snowplay area, is a beautifully decorated courtyard filled with decorations solely made of Lego bricks!  The most notable item was a record breaking, 30 foot tall Christmas Tree!  You can usually find "Santa" in this area ready for photo ops with your family.


We went on a TON of rides, the kids favorite being the Royal Joust on Castle Hill.  This area had a large variety of rides and activities that we enjoyed.  As real gold prospectors, we had to try the gold panning area where the kids could pan for fools gold.  Mini-Golf and the Dragon Roller-coaster were close favorites.  We went on the Dragon 5 times!

We played around the park for about 3 hours before having lunch with other bloggers at the Fun Town Market.  We enjoyed a wonderful authentic German fare of bratwurst, potatoes, sauerkraut, and my favorite, churros with chocolate dipping sauce! Yummm!

In the afternoon, we got a chance to check out the new Legoland Hotel.  The first thing that you notice when you walk in the hotel is that there are Lego bricks EVERYWHERE!  Yes, I know that it is Legoland, DUH!   Really, they are in the floor, walls, ceilings, and even a castle built completely of Lego bricks where kids(and kids at heart) can build to their hearts content.

There is a bar/cafe next to the Castle so you could even relax while the kids played.  The Bricks Family restaurant had adorable Lego Chefs that overlooked the diners.  Across from the restaurant lies the Skyline Cafe with a full bar for the adults with an awesome "view" of a downtown skyline.


I had heard about the 250 themed rooms.   You have a choice of 3 different themes, Pirates, Kingdom or Adventure(think Indiana Jones).  There are deluxe and regular rooms that all include 2 separate sleeping areas.  The kids bed area include bunk beds with a trundle.  Sleeping comfortable 3-6 children plus the 2 adults in the Queen size bed.


The Disco Elevators had us laughing and dancing as the music rocked and the Disco lights twirled.

I took a sneak peak into the banquet room held up to 100 people and felt very spacious.

Unfortunately, my family had to leave by 4:00PM due to my husbands work.  I hope to come back soon and try out the water park and pool.  I think we could easily spend a whole weekend at the park and Legoland has great packages that help us do just that.  The packages for a family of 4 staying one night, starts at about $500.  This includes a 2 day park-hopper to Legoland, SEALIFE Aquarium AND Legoland Waterpark(on-season) for all four of you!  This is a MUCH cheaper option than the other local theme parks.  

I recommend Legoland CA for families with children 2-12 with plenty to do for all!  The Snowy Days and Winter Nights will be going on until December 31, 2013.  There are several annual passes to choose from if you would like to make the best deal.  Check them out here.

Our family had a great day in sunny California playing in the snow and enjoying a new(to us) theme park.

DISCLAIMER:  My family received tickets to enjoy Holiday Days at Legoland CA.  All thoughts and ideas are my own.  Do not use any pictures without permission.