The Real Housewife of Santa Monica
Week 1 – South Street & Smith Memorial Park

Archive of ‘Kids Like It!’ category

Week 1 – South Street & Smith Memorial Park

We started out at my sister’s house. My niece had a day off of work so we grabbed her and headed to South Street. The last time I’d been there was probably 20+ years ago and it wasn’t the same but we had fun.

We happened upon the Magic Gardens:

Outside The Magic Gardens

M was pretty grumpy as we’d just flown in the night before and it was pretty hot. Ok forget the excuses – that’s her default mood.

We had lunch at this largely empty pub. Free air hockey and a local cider, what more could you ask for?

Rachel and me at a pub

After lunch we headed to Smith Memorial Playground. Acres of playground


When I was a kid we at times sprayed furniture polish on the wooden floor, put socks on and slid back & forth. Some genius translated this to a slide!

You grab a gunny sack, run around the walkway and WHEEEEEEEEEEEEeeee down you go!

This little fellow helped us up at the bottom.

Texting & sliding.

No texts were harmed in the filming of this slide.

Not a bad “Intro to Summer Vacation.”

Devorie’s Craft Classes

My neighbor has been holding amazing craft classes for kids this year.

M made apple pie cookies and a cornucopia in the first one. Consistent with her behavior since birth, she cried when she heard she was going. Luckily our neighbor was there.

We arrived to find Devorie’s mini apple pie station.

A healthy snack table with some of the baking supplies.

A chill out area where the kids could draw and relax on a bean bag chair.
M still looks mildly pained at leaving our house.

The baking table.
Part of what makes this class so different from others is, can you see what she has for each child? Yep, besides a slotted wooden spoon they get their own apple peeler. Unheard of in this age of us helicopter parents!

First you must put on an apron:

When I arrived to pickup M she was finishing assembling her cornucopia.

She had already peeled and cut her apples (yep, with her own knife!), assembled & baked the mini apple pies.

At home we baked the cornucopia. It was beautiful!

Unfortunately for it, it was tasty and the girls couldn’t stop tearing off hunks to eat. It never got full of plenty but now we know how to make one next year!

We ate the apple pies SO quickly. Luckily Devorie stopped by with the extra filling the kids had made. So we made our own dough and took a stab at them that weekend.

We took them across the street to dinner at the neighbors’. Delicious!

The second class we attended was an ornament making class.

There was a hot chocolate station awaiting the kids!

Embellishment Station

Chill area

Does anyone have a brush around here?

Hot glue gun table

Hard at work as the sun set

Here are the ornaments they made:

K-Cup Snowman Hat Ornament

They also made Yarn Hats. M hasn’t finished hers but I’ll post a pic when she does!

When I got there to pick up the kids they were all having a big time! Some had gone off on their own project tangents but everyone was engaged in something. Devorie’s class is unique in that it’s very experiential. Instead of focusing on the end product she lets the kids focus on the experience of using all these materials. She is even teaching them how to use glue guns carefully and safely. It’s amazing! They feel so excited because they are able to do almost every part of the project themselves.

There is one more class left in December if you’re interested. It’s at Devorie’s house in Santa Monica.

Tues. 12/15 3-5PM
$30

Darn the class is FULL. Hopefully she will start up again in 2016!
Feel free to email me for Devorie’s contact info!

christina@RHOSM.com


Playing Hooky – Underwood Farms

M only missed one day of school so I told her she could play hooky towards the end of the year. We wanted to pick strawberries at Underwood Farms in Moorpark but couldn’t face the weekend crowds.

If you haven’t been, it’s about an hour from Los Angeles.

Maddie put on Aunt Charlotte's jean jacket to wear to the farm

Patsy embroidered it!

It started out foggy and cool. Going on a weekday is key. Going early is best. The parking lot is almost empty.

When you arrive, you pay the entrance fee and can buy a bunch of tickets. This is the time to get a few tokens for the cars as well as some carrots for the animals.

We had the place mostly to ourselves at first.

No line for the pony ride.

I don't feel good about this but am too lazy/wishy-washy to say no.

M remarked that the ponies looked pretty bored.

Empty bouncy house = best bouncy house

Robot chickens

Mama & baby pig

Sleepy piglets

We also picked LOTS of strawberries but my hands were too full to snap any pix. They are very inexpensive when you pick them yourselves.

After a full day we grabbed a bite at In-N-Out and headed home around 4PM.

Lunch at In-N-Out finished a fun day

This is a fun day. You don’t need a stroller because they have wagons to haul your kids/bags/water bottles & produce around.

TAKE:
- water
- hats
- sunscreen
- sneakers/socks (flip flops will get kind of grody)
- snacks (they have a food bar but it’s not always open)

There are two farms: Somis and Moorpark. Moorpark is the one with all the extras (besides produce picking): bouncy house, animals, petting zoo, pony rides, and in the fall, a corn maze. They also have a produce market on the way out. Somis I believe is much smaller and is primarily for picking produce.

Moorpark Farm Center
3370 Sunset Valley Road
Moorpark, CA

9am-6pm (during daylight savings)
9am-5pm (during standard time)

Open March-Thanksgiving and weekends through Christmas
Closed Thanksgiving Day.

Admission:
$3.00/person M-F
$6.00/person weekends and major holidays
Children under 2 are free.
MAP

Bob Baker Marionettes

A month or so ago we met Lyn in Chinatown (Los Angeles that is) for some dim sum.

Afterwards we descended the steep staircase

to head over to The Bob Baker Marionette Theater to see “The Nutcracker.”

There goes Lyn in the industrial elevator.

We met at the Theater. Founded in 1963 it’s the oldest children’ theater in LA and several years ago was designated a Los Angeles Historic-Cultural Monument (Wikipedia). G had taken the girls a year or two ago and last November, after Bob died at age 90, suggested we go in case it shut down for some reason.

There are some chairs lining the outside of the seating area but most of the kids sit on the ground as close to the “stage” as they can.

Here comes the Sugar Plum Fairy!

Lyn got each girl a marionette after the show. Thank you, Lyn!

It was fun to see the old pix of the theater’s film work.

We had yet another fun day with Lyn!

I highly recommend this experience. You can buy tickets online from their website. They are so totally helpful and friendly – when G wasn’t able to show up they offered to refund his ticket money! We didn’t even ask (or take them up on it.)

Bob Baker Marionette Theater
1345 W 1st Street
LA, CA 90026

(213)250-9995
http://www.bobbakermarionettes.com/

Japanese Brown Beech Button Mushroom & Pesto Pizza

Last month a little packet of delicate Japanese Brown Beech Button Mushrooms came in my CSA box. Fortunately there was a recipe for a flatbread using the little rascals. I modified it slightly into a pizza using what I had on hand. This was a total success! Even G ate the mushrooms (unknowingly)!

Of course you can make this with any kind of mushrooms you have on hand! Just wipe any dirt off and slice first depending on their size.

All you need:

1 tsp olive oil
2 c Japanese Brown Beech Button Mushrooms
1/2 small onion, chopped finely
pizza dough (I used Trader Joe’s Whole Wheat)
2-4 TBSP pesto sauce (also used TJ’s here)
1/2 c shredded mozzarella cheese
parmesan cheese
OPTIONAL: 3-4 fresh basil leaves

1. Preheat oven to 450.

2. Cut mushrooms off base. These mushrooms are so tiny they don’t need to be chopped. Mine were clean w/out dirt on them so I just cut the base off so that they were all separate & free individuals!

3. Heat olive oil in a skillet at medium. When oil is hot, add onions & mushrooms. Stir frequently cooking until onions are slightly soft, for about 2-3 minutes.

4. If you’re using a pizza stone, prepare as you normally would for a pizza. I used a cookie sheet. Brush with olive oil and then sprinkle corn meal on top of the oil.

That prevents the pizza dough from sticking plus it gives a nice texture to the bottom of your crust.

5. Place rolled or stretched dough onto cookie sheet (or pizza stone).

6. Spread a few spoonfuls of pesto (either homemade or pre-made) over the top of your dough, leaving 1/2″ at the edge.

7. Add mozzarella cheese, then the mushroom/onion mixture following by a sprinkling of grated parmesan (to your taste!)

Bake for about 10-12 minutes or until cheese is melted & golden. Sprinkle fresh torn basil on top!

Japanese Brown Beech Button Mushroom & Pesto Pizza
Author: 
Recipe type: Pizza
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 

Serves: 4
 

Easy pizza!
Ingredients
  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • 2 c Japanese Brown Beech Button Mushrooms
  • ½ small onion, chopped finely
  • pizza dough (I used Trader Joe’s Whole Wheat)
  • 2-4 TBSP pesto sauce (also used TJ’s here)
  • ½ c shredded mozzarella cheese
  • parmesan cheese
  • OPTIONAL: 3-4 fresh basil leaves

Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 450.
  2. Cut mushrooms off base. These mushrooms are so tiny they don’t need to be chopped. Mine were clean w/out dirt on them so I just cut the base off so that they were all separate & free individuals!
  3. Heat olive oil in a skillet at medium. When oil is hot, add onions & mushrooms. Stir frequently cooking until onions are slightly soft, for about 2-3 minutes.
  4. If you’re using a pizza stone, prepare as you normally would for a pizza. I used a cookie sheet. Brush with olive oil and then sprinkle corn meal on top of the oil.
  5. That prevents the pizza dough from sticking plus it gives a nice texture to the bottom of your crust.
  6. Place rolled or stretched dough onto cookie sheet (or pizza stone).
  7. Spread a few spoonfuls of pesto (either homemade or pre-made) over the top of your dough, leaving ½” at the edge.
  8. Add mozzarella cheese, then the mushroom/onion mixture following by a sprinkling of grated parmesan (to your taste!)
  9. Bake for about 10-12 minutes or until cheese is melted & golden. Sprinkle fresh torn basil on top!

 

Slightly adapted from Steamy Kitchen.



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