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Spring Bucket List: Take a Nature Walk!

Nature Walks in Orange County

This is now week four of seven on my spring bucket list; see these other posts on having a picnic, flying a kite, and playing in the rain.

Today I’ll share a little about my experience, and other nature walks in Orange County.

Casper’s Wilderness Park had their annual  “Adventure Day” last week that included guided hikes through the nature trail, so when I heard about it, I knew we had to go!

The event itself was so amazing (you can read about that here on my personal blog), and the nature walk was just what we needed as a family!

On our walk, we were able to see towering oak trees, even huge ones fallen in a shady meadow, we saw bunnies and birds, and my four year old was digging all the rocks. California is so beautiful, and it’s so neat to see how it looks relatively untouched.

Even though they were kind of grumpy since it was close to their nap time, and there wasn’t a single TV in sight (can you imagine?!), we tried to make them appreciate it. We kept saying “We’re on an adventure! You are like little explorers!” We also made sure they had some snacks which helped to keep them happy.

One of the best things about these easy nature walks are that they require little equipment!

Supplies:

A hiking backpack for the little ones would be ideal, as a stroller can be quite cumbersome, but my brave husband pushed our double stroller the whole 40 minute walk! Over rocks, etc. Sorry, sweet husband, I forgot the Ergo for our toddler!

Water

Snacks

Good shoes

Sunscreen

Extra Clothing (if it looks like it might rain)

Camera (Optional)

I checked out some library books with some hikes in Orange County, and plan on doing some more because it was so enjoyable. Here are some easy, short hikes that would be ideal for you and your tiny oranges!

Nature Walks in Orange County:

The Coast:

Bolsa Chica Slough Trail (Huntington Beach)

Valido Trail (Laguna Niguel)

Dilley Preserve Canyon – Mariposa Loop (Laguna Beach)

The Foothills:

Santiago Creek Trail Loop (Orange)

Peters Canyon Lake Loop (Orange)

Riley Wilderness Park Loop (Coto de Caza)

The Mountains:

El Cariso Nature Trail (Corona)

San Juan Loop Trail (Corona)

Holy Jim Trail (Corona)

Thanks to Best Easy Day Hikes Orange County (affiliate link) by Randy Vogel for this great resource of a book!

oc-spring-activities-for-kids

Join me next week for some spring cleaning, then flower picking, and lastly I’m hoping to see a rainbow this spring (proving to be harder than I thought!).

Also, you can follow me on Instagram (@lisarimke) to see how I’m squeezing the most out of spring! I’ve been loving lemon everything, the wildflowers that have recently bloomed, and swimming during the heat waves! Also follow Tiny Orange’s (@tinyorangesoc) Insta-feed too!

Do you have any favorite nature walks in Orange County you would like to share?

Spring Bucket List: Go Fly a Kite!

Go Fly a Kite This Spring

With spring comes the rush of swirling winds; there are even infamous ones here in OC like the Santa Ana’s, but right now we have nice cool ones, rolling off the ocean and right into your life! When I made up my spring bucket list ”fly a kite” had to be included because I have a very sweet memory (at the bottom of this post), and really wanted to do it again. I hope this post inspires you to go fly a kite this spring!

First off, pick a kite:

I picked up mine at Target just during my normal grocery trip, and with boys it was a hard choice between Yoda or Optimus Prime. We went with the Transformer. They can be super cheap too; ours was less than $5!

There are also two specialty kite shops if you want to check them out:

The Kite Connection: 1 Huntington Bch Pier, Huntington Beach, CA 92646

Up Up and Away: 139 1/2 Main St, Seal Beach, CA 90740

Then, pick a windy day:

Kites fly best in 5-25 miles per hour winds, so check the forecast, or even easier, check outdoors. When the trees and bushes are moving, it’s a good sign!

Last, pick a good location:

Stay away from roads, airports, and power lines! Try a beach, park or any open field.

Two days before I had my second son, I took my two year old out and we flew a kite together for the first time, and maybe because we were a few miles from the ocean, up a hill, on March 28 (early spring), that kite took off.

Straight up, higher, and higher and that Pooh Bear smiling face kite against the blue sky, held on only by a thin string, is engraved in my memory. A special memory of just me and my only kid, taking a minute to slow down, take it easy and enjoy spring at the end of a kite line.

Follow me on Instagram!

kites and babies

@lisarimke is my username and I’m sharing how I’m squeezing the fun out of the season. You can join me, with #tinyorangesspring; post your fun adventures, recreation or feel-good spring favorites with other local moms for inspiration, too!

Last week @paleorungal shared her family playing tennis in the sun, and our very own Jen @tinyorangesoc gave us an insight into a farmers’ market and pirate cove weekend! The possibilities are endless.

A Budget-Friendly Easter Tabletop

Easter Table Decor Ideas

Today I wanted to share some ideas on inexpensive Easter table decorations for anyone looking for ways to decorate this Easter, without breaking the bank.

This year I decided to do something a little different from the traditional all-pastels; sticking instead with neutrals, greenery, metallics, and some awesome glitter.

I went to my favorite budget-friendly home goods spots to do my Easter tabletop shopping - Ross, Hobby Lobby, and Goodwill. Yes, Goodwill!

Did you know that, in Orange County they get a lot of Target salvage?!  I will write a post all about that soon, and you might find yourself at Goodwill too.

DIY Easter Tablecloth

burlap-and-white-table-cloth

With the 40% off coupon at Hobby Lobby, and some left over fabric, this textural tablecloth only ran me $4.00.

I folded the burlap in half for a thicker look, pinned it to my white fabric, and all you have to do is sew it up!

Happy Easter Garland

I used the leftover fabric to make a  garland, free-handing the light spring green sentiment.

happy easter garland inspired by pottery barn

Easy Easter Centerpiece Grouping

I had my little guys help me paint a former pink bunny white to go with my more neutral color palette and added some Target via Goodwill sparkly eggs into a glass candy jar for some glittery sparkle.

Inexpensive Easter Table Decorations

I used budget-friendly gold candle holders and placemats, plain white plates, and think as it get’s closer to the day, I’ll add some fresh flowers (instead of my semi-browned orchid) but untsil then, there you have it.

Although the table used mostly inexpensive Easter table decorations, the overall look is beautiful, proving you don’t have to spend a fortune to make a festive holiday tabletop.

Happy Easter to you and yours, Tiny Oranges readers!!

Fun Easter Bunny Traditions

Fun Easter Bunny Traditions

Hippity-hoppity…Easter is fast-approaching!  And now that we’re enjoying a beautiful spring, I want to share my fun Easter Bunny traditions with all of you.

Leave carrots for the bunny

Much like leaving out cookies for Santa, my kiddos like to leave out a plate of carrots for the bunny.  Our Easter Bunny tends to have a BIG appetite!  And that silly, messy bunny leaves a trail of half eaten carrots outside of my kids’ rooms, all the way to their Easter baskets.

The carrots with the long, leafy tops.  My kids think this is absolutely hysterical!

I also came across this adorable idea on Pinterest, from Bloom Designs – bunny bait!  Check it out…so cute!

There’s more than one type of egg…

There are TONS of fun ideas floating around, and our Easter Bunny leaves all sorts of fun treats in plastic eggs…and not always candy.

Some of my favorites that our Bunny has done (and I’ve heard about through other mama friends), include:

- Small puzzle pieces (one puzzle piece per egg…then they can put the puzzle together once the egg hunt is complete!)
- Kid-friendly Bible verses
- Stickers or temporary tattoos
- Goldfish crackers
- Little trinkets or play jewelry
- “Treasure” like good doubloons

Kali just wrote a great blog on Tiny Oranges about adorable Easter crafts, including decorative egg ideas – check it out!

Bunny tracks

Our Peter Cottontail sometimes leaves little hoppity paw print tracks (foot prints?) around the baskets he leaves for the kiddos…I think his “secret” is a little flour in the shape of his foot.

Warning – should you attempt, this is messy!

Plant “jelly bean seeds”

One of my mama friends just told me about this…have your kids “plant” jelly bean “seeds” outside.

When they start hunting for eggs the next morning, they’ll find that the jelly beans have sprouted into lollipops!  (Note-to-self – remember where kids planted the seeds!).

How cute is this?!  (Next note-to-self…I sincerely hope the birds don’t find these little lollipop treats as equally as yummy as my kids do…)

Follow the clues, follow the trail!

I’ve also heard of another cutie patootie idea – the Easter Bunny leaves clues…or trails…from the kids’ rooms to their baskets – this is great for kids who already know how to read.  It’s a fun basket “treasure” hunt.  The bunny could also use jelly beans, baby carrots, written clues with riddles for the kids to solve, plastic eggs…the possibilities are endless.

Bunny breakfast

What’s Easter morning, without a fun bunny breakfast?  Take a look at these two ideas I scouted out on Pinterest…pancake “bunnies”…and a super cute egg dish, with bacon.

Half Hour Meals – bunny pancakes with a healthy twist!

Worth Pinning – make your scrambled eggs and bacon into a super cute bunny shape!

 What are your favorite Easter Bunny traditions?  Any fun or cute ideas?  Please share below!

Spring Bucket List – Go on a Picnic!

Picnic Spots in Orange County

Hey guys! We are now on the second week of my spring bucket list for kids, and this one is about taking the family on a picnic this spring! There are so many great picnic spots in Orange County, and I love that a picnic is such an easy, cost-friendly activity that still feels really special.

You don’t need to bring much, and the menu can be simple…

Picnic Necessities:

Waterproof Blanket

Cooler with food

Toys for Kids

Family Picnic Menu:

Ham and Cheese Sandwiches

PB&J’s

Chips

Tangerines

Capri Suns

Favorite Sweet for Dessert

Picnic Spots in Orange County 

We went to my favorite park in Ladera Ranch for our family picnic.  Here are some other great picnic spots in Orange County:

Settlers Park Irvine

Bluebird Park Laguna Beach

Dinosaur Park Laguna Hills

Castle Park Irvine

Balboa Pier Playground

Orange County Great Park Irvine

Citrus Ranch Park Tustin

Flo Jo Park Mission Viejo

Coastal Peak Park Newport Coast 

TeWinkle Park Costa Mesa

Livingston Park Long Beach 

Oso Viejo Park Mission Viejo 

Creekside Park Dana Point

Irvine Terrace Park Corona del Mar

Please also share yours in the comments below!

After lunch, it was so nice to be able to run around with my family. The boys played on the playground and rode their bikes, our dog played fetch, and I was able to relax and not have any distractions, like chores or work.

It felt so good to spend some fun quality time with them, and as a bonus, we properly tired them out for their naps when we got home.

It was my four year old who requested having a picnic in the first place. He loves dining alfresco, and even more so with his Dad on a weekend.

I encourage you to pack a super simple lunch, grab a few necessities, and head outside to a special spot to enjoy a family spring picnic in Orange County!

Join our Spring Journey on Instagram

Please join us on Instagram this spring to share ideas of what OC spring activities for kids you are doing with the #tinyorangesspring hashtag.

Follow me at @lisarimke and @tinyorangesOC to see what we’re doing! And, again, here are the things on our Spring Bucket List. Have you had a chance to check any off?

oc-spring-activities-for-kids