Dino Dig

My son loves dinosaurs and most all prehistoric creatures. He wants to be a paleontologist thanks to YouTube and Jurassic Park; yes, I know it is a questionable movie for his age but he loves it. I went exploring online a few months ago to find the right excavation kit for his age. Spoiler I didn’t find one. What I did find was one kit on Amazon and one at Target.

I found Dinosaur Eggs on Amazon for $22.85 in March 2020; it’s $19.99 as of date of posting. The box says it is not for 0-3 years old at all. The recommended age is 6+ years old. This kit includes 12 eggs with dinosaurs inside, 12 chisels, 4 brushes and 12 dinosaur information cards.

Pros:

  • Keeps him engaged
  • Helps develop patience
  • Interesting way to learn to use new tools
  • Variety of dinosaurs

Cons:

  • Hard to get dinosaur out without soaking in water or help from adult
  • Brushes are thin
  • Chisel is hard for him to use (longer chisel would be great)
  • Takes a long time to get the dinosaur out if you don’t soak it
Learning Guide looks just like the box cover above

The National Geographic Dino Fossil Dig Kit was found at Target but I do not recall the price. I did find the same kit on Amazon for $9.97 as of date of posting. This is not for children under 3 years old. The box recommends ages 8+ years old. The kit includes on T. Rex shaped brick with dino poop, mosasaur tooth and generic dino bone, 1 chisel, 1 brush, 1 magnifying glass and a learning guide.

Pros:

  • Exciting for all ages (namely me, I was excited…)
  • Easy to chip away with small amount of water poured over per instructions
  • Packaging doubles as a container for the dig brick which contains mess
  • Colorful
  • Brush and chisel easy for son to use without help
  • Learning guide was great even for my son who knows a decent amount about dinosaurs/ paleontology
Counter clockwise: Mosasaur tooth, poop and bone between brush and magnifying glass

Cons:

  • Only one brick
  • Not something a younger kid can continually play with

Overall both kits are great considering the price and contain learning guides/ cards for later reference. The Dinosaur Eggs kit is good for multiple kids and continued play since the eggs contain small dinosaur toys. The Nat Geo kit is good for a more dig like experience and has a magnifying glass that will definitely be fun to use for other experiments.

Monster Jam 2020

I like things that go but my son loves them! As soon as I found out Monster Jam was coming to our city, I knew we had to go. Thanks to Blippi via YouTube he knows all about monster trucks especially Grave Digger. So I knew this would be a great surprise especially since he’d been keeping his room clean and being a great big brother.

Once the day came, I casually mentioned to him that we had a surprise for him later on in the day. He was curious but quickly let it go because toddler… Soon it was nap time and I finally told him so he could rest before his late night. This didn’t work and tears followed. After he finally calmed down, he passed out. By the time we woke him up, it was time to go.

Earth Shaker and Grave Digger

We prepaid for parking so we were walking to the place along with lots of other excited kids. There were a few rowdy young adults but they didn’t bother anyone just generally loud and possibly intoxicated. Upon walking inside, the crowds were packed around every booth that was setup with merchandise and food. Our seats were way at the top but I didn’t mind as the view was better and seats were affordable. Below are a few moments he is still talking about so I felt the need to include them. I will also post clips on my YouTube channel but be warned they were shot on my mobile as professional equipment or any type of decent camera setup were prohibited.

El Toro Loco and Monster Mutt
Scooby Doo and Grave Digger
Megalodon losing it’s top!
Scooby Doo and Black Ops
Monster Mutt (?) and El Toro Loco ATVs
El Toro Loco loses a horn!

Tips

  • Bring noise cancelling headphones
    • no matter how high up you are it is loud…
  • Be prepared to wait in long lines if you buy merchandise after the show
    • buy early if possible to avoid lines and to ensure you get what you want
    • get your bubble skull when you see them because they WILL run out
  • Make sure your little one is prepared for the down time
    • he loved seeing the construction type vehicles but if your kid isn’t in to that then make sure they have snacks or something during that time
  • FYI for sensitive groups; the fuel smell is very obvious and could be worse depending on how close you are
  • Duration 2-2.5hrs
    • make sure your kid wants to sit that long
    • my son was okay but he was more focused on the candy and started playing with the earplugs towards the end
    • if your child doesn’t want to sit that long but would love it, definitely buy the cheap tickets so if you leave early it won’t feel like a waste

Final thoughts: The prices were on par for a special event but the small toy monster trucks seemed very affordable ($10/ truck). I would like to thank the mom next to me for letting me have her new earplugs as I forgot to bring the pair I had. She didn’t hesitate or make any judgmental faces; she just leaned over asked if he’d use them and handed them over ❤ Due to this act of kindness, I’ll bring a spare pair to the next event I go to. Well feel free to ask me any questions as I did enjoy the event and so did my son and husband!

Highwater Jamboree

After having our second child, I felt the need to update our emergency plan. We’ve had a plan since finding out our neighbor’s house burned down; this happened years before we bought our home. It helped us see the urgency in having a plan because you never know when an emergency will occur. The first thing we did was get food that was easy to carry but would provide what we needed. Then we tasted it to see if we’d actually want to eat it; totally unnecessary but it definitely wasn’t something you’d overindulge in. Next we packed dog food, rain smocks, flash lights, batteries, etc. We never bought the water we needed nor did we get a few other essentials but we felt it was a good start. Plus we weren’t entirely sure where to go from there. So we researched, made a plan then did absolutely nothing until…

I receive an email from the City of Sacramento about the second annual Highwater Jamboree – Flood Prep Exposition. This seemed like perfect timing but I was surprised as I didn’t realize there was a first. Anyways I read the email, clicked on the link and decided we definitely needed to attend. While I went for information regarding how to prepare for natural disasters common in our area, I knew my toddler would love all of the emergency vehicles.

Sacramento Police Department Helicopter

The morning of the event I told my son we had a surprise for him. He was excited but didn’t really know what was going on as we didn’t give him much information. As we drove to the event, I explained a little about what he could expect. I let him know we’d be going to an event to show us how to be prepared for emergencies. I compared it to popular shows he watches then let him know we would be seeing similar things. Finally, we arrived but there was little to be excited about because we parked far away. After walking for a bit, he saw the vehicles.

Truck used for maintaining the city drains and sewer systems; don’t remember the name…
Fire Truck!

Each vehicle had an attendant. The one above showed him how they use a camera, on what looked like a remote controlled car, to see inside the pipes. The attendant/ operator also explained how another item (looked like a small space rover) worked as well as giving a brief kid friendly explanation of the pipes on display. He went on to tell him the importance of keeping the drains clear of leaves and trash so water can enter the drains and be safely transported away from the streets.

Bulldozer
Hubby and son inside a backhoe loader
City Sanitation Vehicles
M.I.C – Mobile Incident Command

My son’s favorite was a toss up between the bulldozer and the excavator. My favorite was the M.I.C. I was able to speak with the officer inside to get details on what this is used for, where it goes and why it is important. I’ll post two views from interior and one video showing the exterior to my YouTube channel Journey to Mommy (links at end of post). I do state in the video that I don’t mention names or show people because I’m a firm believer in privacy. Please note no one asked me not to show them or mention names; this was a choice I made. Once we finished viewing all the vehicles, we went to the tents. All the tents had different information on various agencies that help before, during and after an emergency.

The City of Sacramento Office of Emergency Services tent stood out the most. It was a one stop shop for preparation. The attendants asked about who was in my home and what elevation I was at. These questions are important as having a pet, small children and/or elderly would change your preparation needs. The elevation is important because flood zone versus non flood zone dictates whether or not you should plan to stay in your home or leave. Both require different planning. These were things I wouldn’t have thought of on my own. Below are all the pamphlets I received. If you don’t have a plan acquiring these would be a good way to start as well as checking out your city website to see how they operate in case of emergency.

SeaQuest – Folsom, CA

It has been raining a lot in Sacramento, CA. We went from barely any rain to what feels like daily showers. I am not complaining because I love the rain as it is the best for my allergies and asthma. However, as the work from home mom of a toddler, it is getting tough. I have a hard enough time trying to safely entertain him as it is; he prefers the thrill of jumping off of and climbing onto things that aren’t made for that purpose. So I made it a point to find something fun for him to do on Sunday (3/3/19).

I was inspired when I saw a local radio personality post about SeaQuest on their Instagram. I did my research and planned the trip. Once I mentioned it to my husband he reminded me that he told me first and wanted to go.

On Sunday, we ate breakfast then headed to Folsom, CA where the nearest SeaQuest is located. Upon arrival the building doesn’t look like it could contain an aquarium or really anything with animals but looks can be deceiving. We ran into other parents who confirmed we were indeed at SeaQuest; so my first word of advice is to find others who can point you in the right direction. I’ll include a list of suggestions/ helpful hints at the end of the post. Once we finally checked in, the fun began. I don’t want to ruin it or make it sound too fun but we enjoyed watching our son go from section to section exploring the land and sea creatures. We also plan on returning during off peak hours to enjoy the other things employees told us about as we visited the different areas. Enough writing, below are a few pictures we took along with my helpful hints/ suggestions. Please note I took more pictures however I don’t want to ruin the experience by showing everything.

Entering from the right going towards Fantasy Caves

Helpful Hints/ Suggestions:

  • Arrive Early
  • Buy Tickets Online ($2 discount as of 3/3/19)
  • Wear good walking shoes
  • Visit during off peak hours (we were told weekdays esp 4pm – closing)
  • For check-in, prepare to wait in a long and somewhat confusing line
  • You can touch some of the aquatic creatures but make sure to wash your hands before and after for the safety of creatures and yourself
  • You can pay to feed or hold the creatures
  • https://folsom.visitseaquest.com/

San Diego Trip

I finally decided to live and stop trying to take all of the pictures. I don’t have any pictures from the beginning of our trip but below is a snap shot of our date night, the zoo and the baseball game. We had a blast and my son was able to hang out with his uncle, aunt and fur cousins 🙂

Date Day

  1. Looking at Hotel del Coronado
  2. Wondering around Waterfront Park Area
  3. Werewolf in Gaslamp District

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San Diego Zoo

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Petco Park – Padres vs Reds

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My sister-in-law said it best: You can capture the image but you’ll never be able to share the feelings you experienced so enjoy the moment!

Day Trip – Monterey, CA

Hubby surprised us with a day trip to Monterey! It was a complete mystery until we were about 1/3 of the way there. Then I found out while navigating. Even though I was getting over a bad virus and hubby felt awful, we had a great time. Here’s what the view looked like 🙂

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That’s a cold sore not a booger! 

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PS – I might continue to update with pictures because I don’t have all of them

Review: FUNERICA Pretend Play Food Set

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Pros:

  • All pieces fit into the container easily
  • Cuttable pieces have sturdy velcro
  • Durable
  • Container can be opened by toddler
    • my son actually found this very amusing so it is kind of like an additional toy!
  • Food is realistic with  seeds/ core
  • My husband and I enjoy playing with this because of the cuttable food

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Cons:

  • Image on Amazon shows stainless steel pots, pans and additional utensils but what I received was plastic pink & red and no additional utensils (not including knife as that wasn’t shown to be steel)
    • Note – I was charged a lower than what I originally saw so the lower price might have reflected the adjustment in product
  • Must use back & forth motion to cut food because chopping (one movement) doesn’t work easily
    • Husband pointed out this is usually how you cut which makes it more realistic however I like to chop because it’s fun 😉
  • Easy for toddler to lose pieces so parent has to make sure all food items are put back together
    • already lost 2 pieces so we only have 1/2 of an apple and steak not a big deal but worth mentioning

Overall: I would buy this again because my son loves it and he can cook mommy lunch. I would prefer to be notified if the items will be different than what was shown as the set pictured looked more like my cookware which is what I was going for but again my son doesn’t care and still really enjoys the set. The link shows all the items I received in the set and you can see my son’s little hand as he’s too excited to wait for me to finish recording.

While this post isn’t sponsored by anyone, I was able to buy it with gift cards I accumulated through taking surveys. I still worked for the gift cards but it wasn’t part of  regular income.

New Do & the Zoo

I’ve been searching for a protective style I wouldn’t get bored with and braids seemed to be the best option. I wanted to add fake hair but my mom convinced me not to so if I took it down quickly I wouldn’t be wasting money. Braiding took a while but it was well worth the time and effort. I was able to wet it as much as I liked and getting ready for the day was a breeze since I no longer had to worry about my hair.

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This leads me to the zoo! My other parents aka my in-laws planned on taking us to the zoo and I didn’t want to be bothered with my hair so the braids once again proved to be very useful. I was able to wake up on zoo day with my hair already done so I was focused on things like making sure my phone and camera was charged so I could turn into the paparazzi. I took all the pictures and videos I could while still enjoying the moment. I even stopped to read up on each animal and their stories were fascinating. Turns out it wasn’t a regular zoo. This was more like a sanctuary than a zoo because all of the animals were rescued. We found out some enclosures were empty because those animals were rehabilitated and released! This just added to my enjoyment.

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All in all braiding my hair was a great idea for numerous reasons* and seeing my son’s face when he finally saw real monkeys was priceless.

*I have allergies and windy days aren’t my friend especially if my hair is down because pollen and whatever else is floating in the air tends to get trapped in it.