Ya’ll know my family loves the YMCA! Between the great child care, clean pools, excellent group classes (I love yoga!), I am stoked that All San Diego County YMCA locations are open and free to all this coming Sunday, June 16, 2019.
The location closest to us, the Cameron Family YMCA in Santee is opening it’s newly redesigned Fitness center this Saturday- I can’t wait to check it out on Sunday morning! If you join in June, there are all kinds of deals, including no enrollment fee (a $50 value)!
It’s finally winter in San Diego! It’s rainy, cool, and we even had an awesome thunderstorm this afternoon. Cooler weather means that I can turn on the oven and get cooking!
I made these cookies for the first time last weekend for a Cast Party. They were so well-received (read, I think only 3 came home, out of the 3 dozen I made) that I knew I had to make them again.
So why Kitchen Sink Chip? You can use whatever kind of chips or candy you’ve got. Everything but the Kitchen Sink. The first time I used peanut butter chips, butterscotch chips, and M&M’s. This time, I used butterscotch chips, semi-sweet chocolate chips, and M&M’s to accommodate a friends peanut allergy. Additionally, you could use white chocolate chips, dark chocolate chips, milk chocolate, speciality holiday chips, M&M’s (of any variety), or any yummy candy- I got Andes Mints pieces to put in my next batch. Whatever sounds good to you.
4C. AP Flour
2t. Baking Soda
1t. Salt (I use pink salt)
2C. softened butter or shortening or coconut oil (or some combination of two or more- I use half butter and half shortening)
1C. white sugar
1C. brown sugar, packed
1.5C Chocolate Chips (or whatever kind you like)
1.5C. Butterscotch Chips (or whatever kind you like)
3 oz box M&M’s- movie theatre sized box (or whatever kind of candy you like)
In a medium bowl combine flour, soda, and salt. Set aside.
In a large mixing bowl, cream butter and sugars.
Add eggs, one at a time.
Using mixer on low, slowly add dry mixture to wet mixture.
Once two mixtures are completely combined, add chips/candy one variety at a time and mix well.
Drop spoonfuls of dough on greased cookie sheets or cookie sheets lined with silicone baking pads.
Cook in a 350 degree oven. You can adjust the size and baking time, depending on the size cookie you want. I used rounded tablespoons and it took about 12-15 minutes in a 350 degree oven. If you make them smaller, adjust cooking down to 8-10 minutes.
Tablespoons: 2 dozen large cookies
Teaspoons: 4 dozen smaller cookies.
These cookies are dead simple to make. You can make adjustments as needed: 1 for 1 gluten free flour for AP flour, Sola or Splenda for white sugar. I like that these cookies are not overly sweet. They use approximately 1/2 cup less white and brown sugar than other cookie recipes. I think that and the salt help the flavors of the chips/candy pop.
We recently received an advance copy of Warner Bros. Home Entertainment’s film Smallfoot.
It was so cute! If you are looking for a cute family movie to watch this holiday season, Smallfoot is perfect! And you are in luck, because today, December 4, “Smallfoot” will be available to own in high definition and standard definition from select digital retailers including Amazon, FandangoNOW, iTunes, PlayStation, Vudu, Xbox and others. On December 11, “Smallfoot” will be made available digitally on Video On Demand services from cable and satellite providers, and on select gaming consoles.
If you are like us and love the Dvd/BluRay/Digital combo pack, that will be released on December 11, 2018.
Smallfoot is an animated adventure for all ages, with fun new music by Zendaya & Common and featuring an all-star cast, “Smallfoot” turns the Bigfoot legend upside down when a bright young Yeti (Channing Tatum) finds something he thought didn’t exist—a human! News of the “smallfoot,” Percy (James Corden), throws the simple Yeti community into an uproar over what else might be out there in the big world beyond their snowy village. This is an epic story about friendship and courage!
“Smallfoot” Blu-ray Combo Pack contains the following special features:
Yeti Set Go Sing-Along – Sing-Along, fun facts and much more!
“Super Soozie” Mini Movie – Custom animation featuring the yeti toddler, Soozie.
Migo in The Secret of the Yeti Stones – Featurette featuring Channing Tatum
Yeti or Not, Here They Come! Imagining Smallfoot – The making of Smallfoot
Nial Horran “Finally Free” Music Video
Cyn “Moment of Truth” Music Video
“Wonderful Life: In 28 Languages, Sung Around the World” Music Video
“Smallfoot” Standard Definition DVD contains the following special features:
Yeti or Not, Here They Come! Imagining Smallfoot
I am so excited to give away a copy of Smallfoot to one reader! Entering is easy: Just leave a comment on this post- What is your favorite holiday tradition? Looking at Christmas lights, caroling, a special family meal, midnight mass, ugly sweaters?
I’ll chose one winner on 12/10/18 and notify the winner via email and will be shipped directly to the winner by the giveaway sponsor.
Today only, you can take $13.00 off the lowest marked price making tees only $16.95, sweatshirts only $21.95, and hoodies only $26.95!
These designs are so cute and so fun and bring a little extra festive style into any wardrobe this holiday season! They are so cute to be snuggled up in around a fire while watching your favorite Christmas movies or even better as you are trying to stay warm running around town finishing up all of your holiday errands.
Sizes range from S-3XL making these the perfect item for any and everyone! The coupon code is HOLIDAYSTEALS and it takes $13.00 off the lowest marked price! Don’t forget the FREE Shipping!
2018 has been a hard year for so many families. Thankfully there are many local groups that are offering help to neighbors in need.
The holiday are more than food and gifts, but no one should go hungry any time of year!
Here is my post with a list of food banks/pantries in San Diego. Many of the food pantries also have special holiday distributions, it is worth a call to find out of any additional food or gift distributions will be done.
If you desire a tree, plan on coming to Faith Chapel to register as early as 8:30am. Trees are limited to the first 100 registrants. Bring tie downs or whatever else you need to take a tree home with you. From their email, “Meet The Need will be held at the Faith Chapel Activity Center at the top of the church property beginning at 1:00pm. There will be lots of fun activities and a wonderful Mexican Themed meal!
Registration for Meet The Need will be held in the church lobby at the top of the campus in the main foyer. Registration will begin as early as 8:30am and will be open till 10:30am. We only have 100 Christmas Tree’s, available for the first 100 registrants that want a Christmas Tree. So if you want to guarantee yourself a tree, show up as early as possible.
Registration will be from 8:30-1:00pm Feel free to register at this link now. It’ll help the line move faster but please know this does not count as saving your place in line for a tree. Doors open for Meet The Need at 1:00pm.”
Toys 4 Joy has 3 San Diego area events on December 8th. Toys for Joy is open to all children and families and no registration is required. One free toy will be given to all children attending the event ages 0 – 11. Free lunch will be provided in addition to free entertainment, kids activities and giveaways. All three locations have free groceries and one location has free gently used clothing available.
The Cameron YMCA is hosting a free Cookies and Milk with Santa on Saturday, December 15th.
Bring the entire family and join us for our annual Cookies with Santa!
Enjoy Cookie decorating, ornament making, letters to Santa, pin the
heart on the Grinch and photos with Santa!
Pre-Registration Required. Thanks to PetSmart of El Cajon, all children registered will receive a plush toy at the event while supplies last.
This event is not limited to YMCA members! To register, please call the Cameron YMCA in Santee at 619-449-9622.
East County kids are invited to meet Santa, enjoy crafts and snacks with the Santee-Lakeside Elks Lodge on December 15th.
In order for your kids to receive a gift, please sign up your kids up to 12 years old via email to Jerrilynn: Kids_Christmas_Party@cox.net by December 7th please include name, age & gender and gift idea under $20.00
New Christian Fellowship in Hillcrest is having an fun, free event on December 22nd. There will be toys for kids 12 and under, as well as food, games, and fn. You can find more information on their Facebook page here.
And if you are in a position to help out, please consider donating to your local food or toy drive. Many grocery stores have red donation barrels, schools are doing canned food drives for their local food banks this time of year too.
In Santee, Santee Santas and our local Chick-Fil-A have teamed up to “Stuff the truck” this Saturday, December 1st.
Bring a toy or non-perishable food item and receive a free menu item (see the flier). You can learn more here.
When you donate, not only will you have the satisfaction of knowing that you are helping others, but you will also get a thank you coupon from Firefly Wellness Day Spa. Each person who donates ten (10) or more items will receive a coupon for a FREE brow wax or a $20 coupon to use at Firefly Wellness Day Spa which can either be used as a holiday gift or use it for yourself on your next visit. (Limit one coupon per person.)
And if you are looking for a way to ring in the New Year, the Kids’ New Year’s Eve party. This celebration begins with special musical performances on Fun Town Stage and Heartlake City. Then, the party moves to San Francisco in Miniland U.S.A. where, like the famous Times Square party, Kids’ New Year’s Eve features a countdown followed by a huge LEGO brick dropping 22 feet into 2018 and spectacular fireworks at 6 p.m. to end the night.
The entire park is decked out for the holidays. We loved all the touches to Miniland, including the tree in front of Capital Building, along with the carolers.
And here is an Insider Tip: The Pizza and Pasta Buffet offers Kids Eat Free after 4:30pm (1 free kid per paid adult, and kids under 3 eat free) most days. Henry loves Pizza, and after a busy day of running, playing, and building, he and Margaret were both ready to chow down on some pizza and mac n’ cheese.
Also- Don’t forget to try Granny’s Apple Fries! They are to die for!
I love to tie dye! It’s a great way to give clothes that may have been stained a new life. Since I get most of our clothes from clothing swaps, I often find really cute light colored kids clothes with minor stains.
Well, and when you’ve got kids, a lot of stuff ends up with stains, and not just their clothes, I have several shirts that I had to tie dye to cover little people stains from dirty hands and faces rubbing on my during hugs.
There are a lot of tie dye kits available at your local craft store, but what they don’t tell you is that the dye in those kits doesn’t last. We used this kit last year and the remaining shirts we have have faded to very light pastels. So, if you want to do some awesome, vibrant tie dyes, I recommend using Procion Dyes like the ones Dharma Trading sells.
I also have cultivated an Amazon Store with all the stuff you will need , including a kit that contains Procion Dyes- All you need is a bag of Urea and the kit is ready to dye! Procion dyes are best for Cotton, ramie, hemp, rayon- Natural plant based fibers (not linen- that stuff is a bear to dye). If you have blends with synthetic fibers (like polyester, acrylic, lycra), the color will not be as vibrant. Anything less than 50% natural fiber will end up being pastel.
Since Tie Dying can be a little intimidating, let’s break it down. In addition to your dyes and chemicals…
You will need:
A big open space (We use my parents backyard)
2-3 6 foot tables covered in protective plastic (tarps or trash bags work well)
1-2 Large Buckets (5 gallon buckets from Home Depot are great)
Access to warm water
Measuring cups and measuring spoons (I recommend plastic ones)
Plastic bags or plastic wrap (to cover up /wrap up garments after they have been dyed)
Here is my pinterest board with tons of great folding techniques and patterns. You are ready to fold and tie once you’ve selected your garments and laundered them without fabric softener. I love incorporating marbles, canning jar lids, clamps to make tie dying more interesting.
Once everything is folded/tied and secured (either with rubber bands, zip ties, or cotton string), it’s time to mix the washing soda and hot water. 1 cup of washing soda per gallon of water. Mix together in the buckets, and soak the tied garments for 15 minutes-1 hour. The washing soda raises the pH of the garments allowing the dye to be more readily absorbed.
Washing Soda is NOT BAKING SODA. Washing soda is caustic and will hurt you if you submerge your hands in it. Wear gloves when you handle it. Wring out the garments after soaking so they are damp, not dripping. You can keep using the same water for your entire session.
While your garments are soaking, mix up your dye. The most dye will come directions, but remember to mix your water with Urea. 1/4C of urea to 1 quart warm water. Urea helps the dye dissolve and remain mixed. It also helps the colors stay vibrant.
TIME TO DYE! Once your soaked garments are wrung out, it’s time to apply the dye. If you aren’t sure which colors will look good together, Get a color wheel. It will help you with color placement too. When you tie dye, colors will run together, so using complementary colors will help your garments look better when they are finished.
Remember to apply dye all sides, and if your garment is bunched up a lot, you may need to squirt dye between the folds to make sure the dye penetrates all of the layers.
After the garment is dyed, place it in a plastic bag, or wrap it up in plastic wrap. You want to lay the item flat. Let the garments sit for 24 hours (or over night), rinse the garments one at a time under cool water until most of the water coming from our garment is clear or a very pale. Then remove the binding (rubber bands, zip ties, string).
Wash completed garments with Synthrapol. It’s laundry soap that binds the color molecules to the fabric and sheds the dye that is not bonded. Once you wash the finished garments with Synthrapol, the clothing won’t shed dye or rub off on you, you can use your regular detergent from then on out. I also throw a couple Color Catchers in the wash too for good measure.
Once your garments are dry, the are ready to wear! I use the word “garments”, but you can also dye fabric, bed sheets, even pillow cases.
Here is a King Sized Pillow Case!
This piece of fabric had several different patterns combined!
Here is some of the most recent stuff I dyed:
Tie dye shirts make great gifts! You can also tie dye socks- That’s what Bitty Bird is getting in her Advent Calendar this year!
I have utilized Amazon links within this post, prices can change at any time, and I may receive a commission when you click the links to Amazon and purchase items linked. Commissions help cover the costs associated with blogging.