If you don’t have plans for Thursday, check out the fun at Legoland California!
Don’t miss Fireworks set to a patriotic musical tribute with great viewing in designated locations throughout the Park.
Event activities include:
All-American family picnic games: water-balloon tosses, burlap sack races, Family Build Challenge and LEGO Hamburger relay
Patriotic costume parade: come dressed in your favorite Red, White and Blue attire
Character meet and greets
Live performances and more!
The celebration lasts from 1:00pm to 9:00pm with fireworks at 8:30pm. All Red, White and BOOM! activities are included in the cost of admission to LEGOLAND California.
And if you are looking for a deal, Groupon has discount admissions here. Or if you stop by a San Diego County area McDonald’s location, you can pick up a coupon for a free child admission when you purchase an adult admission at full price.
If you are looking for more frugal fun at Legoland, check out my post here. If you have a special needs child, learn more about the Assisted Access pass here.
We have the Target Red Debit Card, so it’s just like using our Debit Card at checkout. There is also a Target Red Card that is a credit card. If you are a Target shopper with any frequency, it’s worth signing up for a Target Red Card (either debit or credit). 5% off each time really adds up.
Recently, the kids and I got a sneak peak of the Lego City: Deep Sea Adventure ride. It was great fun- it combines a submarine ride, a treasure hunt, and Legos! The kids had a blast. Henry loved getting his picture taken with Lego “Sharky”, and of course the building station to entertain the kids while we waited in line. I like that the building station has directions and information about real life fish and ocean wildlife that kids can build with the Legos found at the building station.
Henry loves Legoland, and so does Margaret. I love taking them. In addition to fun rides, there are tons of areas for kids to play, run, build Lego, and splash (in addition to the water park). What I really like is that they offer an Assisted Access Pass.
A lot of readers don’t know this, but Henry is ASD (That’s Autism Spectrum Disorder). So going on rides, waiting in line with a lot of people, loud noises, and weird smells can trigger him and lead to meltdowns, or just shutting down (sensory overload). Thankfully Legoland offers the Assisted Access Pass. For anyone with a disability, pick one up at Guest Services near the entrance. The pass entitles the pass holder, plus up to five additional people in your party to by-pass the regular line, and wait in a shortened line.
After you get into the by-pass line, the Model Citizen (that’s the staff member) will sign your pass and give you the next time that you can utilize the pass again. You can use it all day. We usually use it 3-4 times to go on the rides the kids really want to go on and have a long line. The wait time to use the pass again can be passed at a splash pad, play area, or building station. There is lots to see and do besides rides. There are quiet areas where kids (and adults) can decompress and relax at both First Aid and The Baby Care Center.
I also like that you can bring your own snacks into Legoland too. I pack our backpack full of snacks and treats, and our reusable Camelback bottles , (which you can refill with ice and water for free at anyone of the Coca-Cola Freestyle machines throughout the park). But- the kids and I do love the goodies and treats at Legoland. Especially, Granny’s Apple Fries.
If you and your kiddos are ravenous after 5pm in the park, check out this deal:
KIDS EAT FREE AFTER 5 PM THROUGH 8/18/2018 * Fun Town’s Urban Kitchen, Wok ‘N’ Bowl Ramen, Garden Deli & Café, Pizza Pasta Buffet and Smokehouse BBQ only. Offer is available for a limited time, see locations for availability and details. Kids receive one FREE Kids’ Meal with the purchase of one full-price adult entrée. Offer is available after 5pm at Fun Town’s Urban Kitchen, Wok ‘N’ Bowl Ramen, Garden Deli & Café, Pizza Pasta Buffet and Smokehouse BBQ at LEGOLAND® California. Adult entrée purchase equals one FREE Kids’ Meal. Cannot be combined with any other discount or offer. Restrictions apply. The right of final interpretation resides with LEGOLAND California Resort. Prices, times and schedules subject to change without notice.
The kids dig the Pizza and Pasta Buffet. I dig Kids Eat Free.
And here are photos of Henry pretending to be Arthur- The king, not the aardvark.
For our family, Legoland is a great way to spend the day together on our schedule, with little to no stress. Talk Back: What is your favorite way to spend time with your family that low key and enjoyable?
Summer vacation is on the horizon, and that means that there will be choruses of, “I’m bored!”
Having a kid who has ADHD and ASD, I frequently hear that lament after school (like, before we even pull out of the school parking lot in the afternoon) complete with body slump and flailing of arms. To combat this, I’ve assembled a list of events that can keep kiddos entertained with little to no cost.
Everyone knows about their local, neighborhood parks for free fun outside, but don’t forget your local libraries and community centers for sources of free fun!
Our local library has events after school (starting at 3pm) for kids grades K-3, including:
Read with Grandma Marcia ~ Every Tuesday
Kids Exploration Day ~ 2nd Wednesday of the month
LEGO Club ~ 3rd Wednesday of the month
Creative Play ~ Each Saturday from 10:30-11:30 am. Children learn through play! Meet new friends and have fun while developing early learning skills. Geared for ages 5 and under (but they are not strict with it- as long as the kids behave).
With all of these activities, a responsible adult must be present and participate.
If you have a Starwood Mall nearby you (Here in San Diego, Parkway Plaza is a Starwood property), check out their kids club called MallStars. From the Parkway Plaza website, “MallStars Kids Club offers exclusive kid friendly events in a safe, community environment, throughout the year. MallStars Kids Club is a FREE kids club open to kids 10 years of age and younger.
The program features exclusive, kid-friendly events for its members throughout the entire year. MallStars members also receive free giveaways; a quarterly newsletter with upcoming events and special offers; as well as priority registration and exclusive invites to mall events.”
Last Month we got to make pizzas, and learn how to roll out dough with friends at Fuertes NY Pizza!
My kiddos love the beach- I know not everyone has the beach near them, but if you do- take advantage! Google your favorite beach and Tide Chart and find out when low tide it. Low tide is the perfect time to hunt for shells. If you are in San Diego, or will be visiting this summer, check out Coronado for the SS Monte Carlo. It’s a sunken ship that is visible and explorable at low tide.
If you have a YMCA membership, check out their free programs for members. Our local Y has Open Gym three times a week, plus a mommy and me craft time for little kids, and lots of other fun programs that are included in our monthly dues. If you are interested in checking out the YMCA but are lacking funds, I encourage you to visit your local Y and ask about scholarships or financial aid.
I also find lots of local events and free fun stuff by checking the “Events You May Like” section on Facebook Events.
Talkback: I’d love to hear what kinds of free (or cheap) fun stuff your family does!
Henry loves Legos (Duh, you may have gathered that from reading this blog), and they are pretty expensive. There are never coupons and most Target and Toys r us deals/coupons specifically exclude Legos.
However, you can still score some cool freebies and deals from Lego!
First, sign up to be a Lego VIP here. It’s free, and here are just a few of the benefits…
Points towards valuable rewards! Get a $5 reward for every 100 points earned!
Members-only gifts and more! VIPs enjoy access to special promotional gifts throughout the year.
Monthly promotions! Earn bonus points on select LEGO sets every month, both online and in store.
Once you are signed up as a VIP, you’ll be able to register for free Monthly Mini Model Build at the LEGO Store. Registrations start the 15th of the month prior to the event (e.g. sign up in November for December event), and space is limited at each store, so don’t wait. We’ve done a couple and they are always fun!
Don’t forget that Toys R Us also has fun, free lego events a few times a year as well. It’s important to RSVP to TRU events, so you definitely get a kit.
Lastly, did you know there is a free Lego Magazine for kids age 5-11? You can sign your kids up for a free subscription . The latest issue arrived yesterday and Henry poured over it for hours. The magazine is packed full of comics, activities, LEGO® fan creations and building tips (Henry’s fav part), and kids receive the magazine 5 times a year!
And here is a tip on how to keep your feet Lego-free…. When the kids play Legos, I spread out a huge table cloth and pour the Legos onto it. Once play time is over, I pick up the cloth and pour the Legos back into their big tote.
This set up provides hours of fun, and just a few minutes of clean up. And the best part… No stepping on tiny pieces of Lego in the dark, unleashing a torrent of swear words and threats of bodily harm to those under the employ of Lego.
We have a lot of Legos- Hand me downs from friends who have outgrown them, some from when Tyler was a kid, and some sets and kits that Henry has been given. Even though we save all the directions, there is nothing more satisfying to me as a parent than to see Henry and Bitty express their creativity through building.
This is a combine. Henry built it all by himself. Not bad for a 6-year old who has never seen one in real-life. The big wheels in the front moved.
Talk Back: What are your money saving tips for Lego Lovers?
I haven’t had much time to sit at the computer and write lately, but we’ve been busy! There are so many free and frugal things to do in the summer, and we haven’t even done a 1/3 of what we have planned!
Here are just a few of the adventures we’ve been having (and you can try them too)!
Rock Painting! Some of you have seen pictures of the painted rocks we’ve been making, hiding, and finding all over town on my Instagram feed. Santee Rocks was started by a local teacher to spread kindness. There are lot of other “rocks” groups all over San Diego, and the US! We even hosting a Rock Painting party at a local park! Over 30 people showed up, painted, and played. We hope to host another one in July.
We’ve also been hitting up our local libraries for all sorts of fun events and activities. Our favorite is the El Cajon Library. They serve lunch M-F, 11:30-12:30. Afterwards there are a variety of events and activities from special speakers, concerts, and even crafts! And they even serve an afternoon snack!
There is a small play area for kids with an interactive discovery structure, and a Duplo Wall! There is a shaded playground out front as well. It’s a great way to spend a few hours in a climate controlled place without visiting the mall or any place where you might spend money. We usually end up bringing home a few library books too.
We’ve been on adventures with friends! Playing T-ball at the park and going on the hunt for decorated rocks was the biggest hit so far.
And of course, We spend time at home, doing crafts, swimming in the community pool, playing Legos, and just hanging out!
I’m of the mind that summer doesn’t need to be packed with activities sun up to sun down. Frequently, we spend our time at home spending time together. We have friends over to play, but it’s super low-key.
I’ve taking a break from trying to pound out an article or post each day. I want to spend time with the kids and family.
What kinds of activities and adventures has you family been having this summer?