Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Painting with Pachyderms! SO Much Fun! @RinglingBros #Elephants

My family got a once in a lifetime chance to do something unbelievable today!

We were invited to visit up close and personal with the Ringling Brothers and Barnum and Bailey Circus elephants at the Honda Center!   We were invited to have an art class with two of their many Asian Elephants! 

The elephants in the wild tend to be curious and creative with sticks and other "toys".  Mabel and Baby both used to use sticks and mud to doodle when they were calves.  Their handlers saw this and "captured" a real behavior and asked them to do it when their was paints/easels available.  The paintings are given away or auctioned off to help elephant conservation! 

Mabel was born at the Ringling Bros and Barnum and Bailey ranch in Florida.  She is one of 26 elephants born there.

The elephants today Baby and Mabel showed us two things that I didn't know elephants could do!  Elephants are great artists with paint and I had no idea they could skip!

My kids were in awe of the gentle giants!  They had never seen elephants close up or even closer that a couple hundred feet!  Now all  they can talk about how beautiful the animals are.  They have drawn several pictures of elephants since this morning and have shown their elephant pictures to all of the neighbors!
My children have unforgettable memories of painting with elephants and getting to see them up close!  Isn't that what being a parent is all about?  Making memories to last a lifetime.

I am aware that most people are animal lovers and would never want to see an animal in distress or unhappy.  I go to places like the zoos and circuses because I looked into the care and happiness of the animals at the respective organizations before I go.  

A portion of the each ticket is contributed solely to support the conservation of elephants. To learn more about the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Center for Elephant Conservation, please visit their website here at  
The truth is that the elephants are given round the clock care.  They have extremely close relationships with their handlers and seem to genuinely enjoy performing. 

Here are a few facts that you might not know about the Ringling Bros. and Barnum and Bailey Circus Elephants:
  • only elephants that seem to really enjoy performing are asked to perform
  • the Asian elephant has been working closely with humans for thousands of years and has a rich history
  • a positive and healthy environment is the only acceptable way of training
  • circuses and zoos bring more awareness of the wild elephants endangerment in the wild
  • the Asian elephant is on the brink of extinction! only 35,000 remain in the world
I hope that you enjoyed our day at Ringling Bros. and Barnum Bailey circus as much as we did.  I hope that more awareness of elephants in captivity is made so that we may protect our remaining wild elephants.

DISCLAIMER:  My family received  an invitation to come and talk with Ringling Bros and Barnum and Bailey Circus elephant experts and paint with their elephants.  All thoughts are my own.  Do not use any pictures without permission.

Our Trip to the @OCFair! #ComeHungry! #COSTAMESA

A couple of weeks ago, my family and I were invited to indulge at the OC Fair.  The last time we had attended, my kids were in diapers!

We went during the week on a Thursday and there were short lines and plenty of food!

One thing that you always hear about at the fair is the food!  Fried everything!  If you can imagine it, they have deep fried it!

The common thing that I saw there was bacon... Bacon was common food fare and they put it in everything!  I am a huge fan so of course I had to try at least some of it!  I was a little disappointed with the chocolate covered bacon... I like my bacon crispy and it was soggy.

The favorite food we tried was the Red-Velvet funnel cake! It was Delish!

We stopped off for turkey legs at Juicy's and waddled our way back to the fair.

The kids were itching to go on rides.  I highly recommend the all day Super-pass as with two young children, the rides added up fast.  We kept having to go back for more tickets.

After the rides, we tried our hand at a few of the carnival games and won a (no-kidding) 10 foot long stuffed snake that is my son's favorite bedtime animal now, Hello Kitty plush, swords, and an assortment of various stuffed creatures. 

The creature that eluded us all day was the Minion!  Everywhere we looked they had these cute Minions from Despicable Me 2.

The kids had to use the restroom and the nearest ones were by the craft area so we decided to investigate.  WOW! I wish I had the talent of the people that created these designs!  There were; quilts, clothing, woodcraft, dollhouses, jewelry and more! 


My favorite were the haunted houses and the intricate wood carvings!

We entered the 4H competition area and were treated to the swine class. 

More rides and games and we were wiped out!  The kids were ready to head home.  There is so much to do!  I wish we could have stayed longer but I am glad my kids had a great time!

We couldn't resist this... I have always wanted to get an old fashioned picture done of us and we got the chance and took it! LOVE it!

DISCLAIMER:  I received passes for my family to give my opinion and enjoy the fair.  All thoughts are my own.  Do not use any pictures without permission.

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Shark Week Aug 4 - Aug 11 @SEALIFEAquarium @LEGOLAND_CA #SharkWeek

Sharks have always been a favorite! I look forward to Shark Week every year on the Discovery Channel! I have been SCUBA diving with sharks on many occasions!

Did you know that sharks can go through as many as 30,000 teeth in their lifetime? SEA LIFE® Aquarium at LEGOLAND® California Resort celebrates the ocean’s top predator during Shark Week, August 4 – 11.
Guests can learn all about sharks, research being conducted by famous oceanographers and the tagging practices being used to track these amazing creatures. Guests will also enjoy:
  • a shark scavenger hunt 
  • themed Puppet Show
  • a special Daily Dive Show
  • craft activities from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. daily


August 4 - 11

SEALIFE Aquarium
Carlsbad, CA
(877) LEGOLAND (534-6526)

Activities are included in the price of Aquarium admission.
Kids 3 to 12 - $15, Adults $20.

DISCLAIMER:  This is not a sponsored post.  All thoughts are my own.  This post is for informational use only.

Monday, July 29, 2013

Built To Amaze! A REVIEW! @RinglingBros #Circus

Last week I received an invitation to attend the opening night at Ringling Bros and Barnum & Bailey Circus's, Built to Amaze, at the Honda Center!  We had a blast! 

First thing we were told when I was invited was to be sure to arrive an hour and half early for the pre-show activities. 

The pre-show activities started in the "barn" area where we got up close to their four legged stars such as the Tigers, Horses, Donkeys, and of course the Elephants!  It is one thing to see them from your seats a distance away but imagine, you can see them as close as 10 feet away!

Next we went into the seating area of the Honda Center.  We were allowed to walk down to the stage and play, dance, and observe many of the 2 legged performers, including the clowns.   Two of the elephants made their appearance for the Crème de la Crème!  Painting!  Yes, the elephants painted with their trunks with a little help from their handlers.


The show was about to start!  We were treated to equestrians, stilt walkers, miniature ponies, clowns and more!

The elephants made their debut followed by aerial acrobats, clowns, uni-cycling basketball players, and more surprising animals followed.


One of my favorite parts of the show were the tigers.

The tight rope walking/riding was amazing!  I really have no idea how they do that!

The elephants were so majestic and patient as they were gently coaxed into their routine, the stars of the show!

Trampoline acrobats and clowns rounded up the show and put on a spectacular finale!

I loved seeing the partnership of the animals and their handlers.  You could not work with elephants, tigers, dogs, horses or any other animal in a spectacular show like this without complete trust from both sides. 

The clowns, dancers, acrobats and entertainers kept us amazed from the first moment to the last.  I highly recommend seeing the show in person!  I really don't think you will be disappointed. 

DISCLAIMER:  I received tickets for my family to attend Built to Amaze opening night at the Honda Center.  All thoughts are my own.  Do not use any pictures without permission.

Win the New DRAGONS Riders of Berk Boxed Set! #ad @FHEInsiders #GIVEAWAY

Do your kids like How to Train Your Dragon?  Do they watch it on TV as religiously as my kids?  The whole two seasons of DRAGONS Riders of Berk was just released to DVD this last week!

I was lucky enough to receive a copy of the set to review.

Besides the great show, the DVD's also teach the kids about how the Vikings(not Minnesota) really lived!  Here are a few facts you can help them learn while they enjoy the show.

Kids’ Guide to Vikings

Hiccup, Astrid, and the other teens at the Dragon Academy show us a bit about what it was like to live as a Viking, but there is so much more to know!
Come take a look at this quick and easy guide to some of the most important facts about Viking life.

When it comes to action and excitement, the sky’s the limit in this high-flying animated adventure based on the Academy Award®-nominated hit movie,  How To Train Your Dragon!
 Vikings at Sea

Not all Vikings travel by dragon like they do in Berk!
Vikings built great, big boats called longships for war. Each one could carry at least 60 men!
Even though they were so large, Viking longships were designed to be speedy and could move through the water much faster than other boats.
Viking Clothes

Vikings from Denmark, Norway, and Sweden dress a lot like Vikings from Berk, but with more layers.
To stay warm in the cold winters, Vikings wore clothes made of wool, animal skin, or linen and shoes made of thick leather or goatskin.

In battle, they wore helmets made of leather or iron.
Viking Homes

Vikings really knew how to make the most of their surroundings! Houses were built of stone, mud, and blocks of turf.
They made thatched roofs from woven sticks covered in mud.
Vikings probably wouldn’t let dragons sleep in their houses the way Toothless does!
Viking Children

The Vikings in Berk get to go to the Dragon Academy to learn about how to become better dragon trainers.

Instead of going to school, real Viking kids stayed home to help their parents work.

Even without school and books, children could learn about history through songs and stories passed down from the older members of the town.

Viking Food

The dragons in Berk eat fish, veggies, and bread given to them by their riders.
Vikings ate similar foods, but also enjoyed meat from farm animals or wild animals that they would hunt.
They drank out of wooden cups or drinking horns.

Sometimes they had feasts for festivals that would last over a week!

Find out more about Dragon Training School!

Get your exclusive Dragon Badges Here!

About Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment

Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment is the industry leading worldwide marketing, sales and distribution company for all Fox produced, acquired and third party partner film and television programing.  Each year TCFHE expands its award winning global product portfolio with the introduction of new entertainment content through established and emerging formats including DVD, Blu-Ray™ and DigitalHD™.  Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment is a subsidiary of 21st Century Fox.

Would you like to own your own copy

of  DreamWorks Dragons: Riders of Berk Part 1

and Part 2 DVD Boxed set?

Enter below for a Giveaway!

DISCLAIMER: I was given a boxed

set of DreamWorks Dragons: Riders

of Berk for my family to enjoy. 

This post is for informational

purposes only.  I have permission

to post all of the pictures

shown.  Do not use any pictures

without permission.