Zoomars: Innocent, Old Fashioned Fun! {Giveaway}

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Have you been to Zoomars Petting Zoo yet? Lyla (my 3 year old girl) and I visited on Monday morning and had the BEST time!

Their motto is “Innocent, Old Fashioned Fun!”  Isn’t that refreshing in our world of cell phones, iPods &  iPads?  To be able to shut it all down & show our kids how things were done in the olden days?

Be sure to enter below for a chance to win one of two Zoomars Zap Passes (good for 20 anytime visits, a $75 value)!!!

We have been so busy lately that I loved taking a few hours to slow it down and focus on enjoying some quality time just she and I.

First stop was the bunny rabbit/guinea pig pen.  Armed with a bin of vegetables (available for purchase at check in)- Lyla couldn’t get enough of the cuddles and feeding the adorable little guys.

Then we wandered over to the Alpacas- we found them fascinating, their big round eyes, the way their top lip split in two as they ate our carrots, and don’t get me started on their FANCY new hair-do’s!  They are freshly back from the groomers and they almost look like Alpaca-poodles!  Too cute.

Next she took a spin on a precious pony in the FANTASTIC new horse corral.  There were two to choose from, a cute pony and what I would call a horse.  My brave little girl wanted the big one!  When she was placed in the secure saddle (complete with a back rest) she said “Look I’m up high like Daddy!” (Her Daddy is tall)

Then we were off to the corn box.  It’s a sand box but instead of sand, it’s filled with millions of dried corn kernels!  Lyla was in heaven diving & rolling around making snow angels (or rather corn angels).  All of the parents standing around were  marveling at the sheer brilliance of this concept.

She loved the playground’s swings & slides, the loopy train ride & then back to the bunny rabbit/guinea pig pen.

At the Miner’s Gulch kids can pan for emeralds, rubies, crystals, sharks teeth, arrowheads, dinosaur bones, even fools gold!  Party like it’s 1849 and bring your next birthday party to Zoomars to partake and your guests have a built in goody bag!

Or if you are a SERIOUS gold digger you can even spring a few extra bucks to pan for REAL GOLD!  

Keep an eye out for a new rabbit run & a second guinea pig pen for double the cuddly fun coming soon!  The Zoomars family has also recently welcomed three new llamas Buttercup, Dia & Jack to their crew!  Be sure you stop by to welcome them to their new home.

Oh & you can’t leave without saying HOLA to Pedro the Potbellied Piggie!  He wagged his tail just like an excited little puppy & I REALLY wanted to take him home with me…

More Exciting Happenings at Zoomars in the months to come~

May:

Free train rides in May for Check-Ins on Facebook, Foursquare and Yelp.

June:

Magic Matt Young will be dazzling at Zoomars June 22nd & 23rd to with exciting close up magic!

June is Zap Pass appreciation month!  Use your Zap Pass to spin the wheel and win FREE stuff like train rides & feed baskets!

July:

Summer Camp for ages 3.5-10 starts the week of July 23rd- lead by a descendant of the Californian Achjachemen Nation, Jacque Nunez. Where Kids Connect with Mother Earth and learn about animals and what they teach us through creative play, games, songs, crafts & storytelling.  A 1:6 teacher to student ratio for an enhanced learning experience.  Washing Tonka the Turtle is always a huge hit!

Check out their site for details.  Be sure to secure your spot now & use code TINYORANGES for 15% off camp tuition!

August:

Mark your calendar~ Zoofest (3 live bands!) August 24 to kick off San Juan’s Rodeo week!

*   *   *   *   *

If  it were up to Lyla we would have stayed at Zoomars ALL DAY.  

(Next time I should plan accordingly!)

Have fun making quality memories and sharing some good old fashioned family fun at Zoomars!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

(Zoomars is a beloved Tiny Oranges Sponsor- be sure to check them out in our OC Biz Guide under Birthday Party Venues + Petting Zoos!) 

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Plan for Summer Now with SeekingSitters OC

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Summer sneaks up on you fast, doesn’t it? And now that I have a grade schooler, I didn’t realize it, but you really have to start planning your summer activities and camp schedule like now!

This post is not to stress you out, but to let you know you can plan for summer with the help of SeekingSitters OC if you anticipate needing assistance when the kids are out of school.

I know a lot of moms work out of the house part time, so when summer rolls around  it can be problematic!  With SeekingSitters OC, you can set up a regular babysitting schedule and know you dedicated, uninterrupted time to work while your kids are having a blast playing with their sitter.

Maybe you don’t have a part time job but prefer not go crazy this summer? Come on, I am not the ONLY one that feels like that, am I?!

With SeekingSitters, you can plan a weekly (or more!) block of time where you can be assured you get at least 4 hours to yourself to run errands, make appointments, take care of yourself, and keep your sanity. Tell your hubby this alone is priceless!

The sitters are all independent contractors, so just as if you were booking a sitter one on one, if you feel comfortable, the sitters are able to take your kids to camp and drive them places if that is what you need help with over the summer months.

Their sitters are AMAZING.  

I wrote about my personal experience using SeekingSitters here. Completely stress-free, no hassle, and our sitter was like a modern day Mary Poppins. She arrived with her own bag of activities geared to my girls’ ages and they were in heaven.

All the sitters are committed to keeping your kids entertained (and off of video games and TV) for the duration of the job. I LOVE this aspect, because I know I am not going to have a babysitter sitting on the couch texting while my kids just watch TV.

A few main points on what makes their service so incredible for families:

* They do all the work for you! No interviews, no calls back and forth, no reference checks, they do all the legwork so you simply put in your dates / requests and they book a sitter for you.

* Safety! All their sitters are prescreened, background checked and have CPR and First Aid training.

* Easy Payments! Payments are made via credit card online so you never have to stress about having cash or going to the bank.

* Personalized Service! Kim Kane, the OC owner will work with you to make sure you get the very best sitter for your individual needs.

* Quality of sitters! Kim does all of the hiring herself, and as a mom of two young boys, knows exactly how high the standards are for a fabulous sitter.  Her sitters are professional, engaging, entertaining and show up on time ready to play with your kids. And when they leave, your house will be picked up in the same if not better condition then it was when they arrived. Important!

Kim recommends working with them now to plan for your summer so she can get you on their schedule.  Many sitters book up due to demand, so the farther she knows in advance, the better.  This is not to say that they can’t accept last minute requests! It is just easier for everyone to plan now if applicable.

I can’t more highly recommend this service.

For more information visit, www.SeekingSitters.com.  You can also visit SeekingSittersOC on Facebook and follow @OCSitters on Twitter.

Kim Kane, Owner, SeekingSitters OC Coastal, Central & South
949.294.1003
kimkane @ seekingsitters.com

[Disclosure: SeekingSitters OC is a Tiny Oranges Sponsor.]

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A Fondue Date Night from OCSaverTime

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My mother-in-law is from Switzerland so I am lucky enough to have experienced her homemade traditional swiss cheese fondue on many occasions. It is simply one of the best things in the entire universe.

I love fondue because a FUN-due (sorry) dinner is about more than the cuisine, it is about the experience. I love the leisurely pace. When you are having fondue, there is no rushing, just good conversation and time to indulge in each delicious bite-sized morsel.

If you have never had fondue before, then this deal today on OCSaverTime.com for dinner at Simply Fondue is one that you cannot pass up for your next date night! Only $45 for a 4-course fondue experience at Simply Fondue in Mission Viejo (a $106 value!)

OCSaverTime.com is a new daily deal site focused on Orange County deals.

The 4-course dinner includes:

1.Choice of  Salad: After checking out the menu the spinach and strawberry sounded particularly appetizing to me. Nice to go with a lighter salad for this course.

2. Choice of Cheese Fondue:  Nothing better in this world that dipping a piece of french bread into a pot of melted cheese. Don’t believe me? You just have to try it yourself. You have to go with the Traditional Swiss with the Gruyere and Emmenthaler cheeses a la my mother-in-law Doris. YUMMMM….

3. Choice of Seven Entree Meats & Seafood:  Yes, you read that right, you get a choice of seven different surf and turf options.

4. Choice of Chocolate Fondue: Of course it wouldn’t be a fondue extravaganza without ending with a chocolate fondue. They even have a Thin Mint variety. Are you kidding me? My mouth is WATERING already!

That alone is quite a deal for $45, but this voucher ALSO includes two glasses of wine or two specialty martinis to add a little fun to the fun-due!

I am so snatching up this deal to take my hubby on our next date night. Better believe we will be toasting his mother for instilling in us a love and appreciation for fondue!

Click HERE to buy this deal.

To sign up to receive these daily deals from OCSaverTime in your inbox, visit www.OCSaverTime.com to subscribe.

You can also follow OCSaverTime on Facebook.

[Disclosure: This is a sponsored post, but all my opinions, including my obsessive love of fondue are my own! Happy to pass on this deal to you!]

 

 

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The SquareSpot Card: You Gotta Get It!

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Recently I discovered a company called SquareSpot which launched in Orange County a few weeks back. As a SquareCard carrier, you can get special deals and discounts from participating local OC companies by simply showing your cute teal green SquareSpot Card when visiting your favorite businesses.

Even better, you can click HERE  to “Get Your SquareCard” for free with promo code TINYORANGES through May 10th, 2012.

Not only that, every person that signs up to receive the card with our TINYORANGES code will automatically be entered to win a $150 gift card to Burke Williams Day Spa! Can I hear a big  “WOO HOO!!”?

So when I heard about this company the first thing I did was check out the OC deals of course!

And I was so impressed I signed up immediately and was excited to start tracking my savings. I am telling you mamas, you gotta get it!

So far SquareSpot OC has 70 + partners on board (with more being added daily) to cater to the discerning mom that loves a great deal, but doesn’t want to sacrifice on quality.

One of the reasons I was so excited when I saw the list of benefits, was that a good number of Tiny Oranges Sponsors were on board already. And you all know by now, that Tiny Oranges only works with the best and brightest family-friendly companies!

Here are the deals from our Sponsors that caught my eye:

* Fashion Camp OC: 10% off all classes and camps. Not applicable to birthday parties or private events.

* Granola Babies: Free snack tray with stroller purchase with promo code “SQUARE” at checkout.

* Knocked Up Fitness: 10 small group reformer Pilates classes (Mon/Fri 6am) or 10 group prenatal Pilates classes (M/W/F at 10:30am) for $300.

* Milkalicious: 10% off purchase.

* Morgan Law Group: Complimentary family wealth planning session ($750 value), including optional legal documentation for naming guardians for your children.

* Precious Hand/Footprints: 15% off your purchase.

* Pretend City: Yes! A Pretend City coupon! Buy one regular priced ticket and receive one 50% off!

* SeekingSitters: $15 pay per request fee waived for up to 3 sitter bookings for new members only.

* Team OC: 20% off first month’s tuition for new members.

* Tiffany’s Dance Academy: Free Dancewear Kit for Twinkle Babies and Twinkle Stars participants.

* Totsie Boutique: 15% off your purchase.

* Xpecting Maternity: 20% off your purchase (excluding strollers.)

…and you can click HERE to sort by “Orange County” to see all of the amazing offers.

The Orange County representative told me that companies can change their deal or promo offer every two months if they want to, which means that companies have the flexibility to offer different promotions throughout the year.

They are also working on launching a Marketplace coming soon, which will be a series of weekly deals you can take advantage of in addition to the standing ones. And one of the advantages of signing up for this card now means that you will be on the mailing list when it goes live.

After the introductory free card offer, people that wish to purchase the SquareCard can do so at an annual membership price of $50/year. So, now is a great time to GET IT FOR FREE and track your savings!

SquareSpot has certainly cornered the market on the types of deals mamas want to see . Click there –> to get square!

[Disclosure: SquareSpot is a Tiny Oranges Sponsor – Check out their cute ad in our right column!]

 

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Fun Things to do with Kids in OC this Spring Break!

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Hello friends – how was your holiday weekend?  I hope it was eggstra special! My daughter has this week off from school and I wanted to do a quick post in case anyone is looking for ideas on fun things to do with kids in OC this Spring Break!

1. 29 Fun Things to Do with Kids in OC: List of my favorites places to visit and things to do with my kids.

2. My 5 Favorite OC Outings with Kids: This is a list of my absolute favorite of 5 fun outings / OC day trips.

3. Our Top 5 Orange County Parks: These are (in my opinion) the best parks for kids in Orange County!

4. Plan a Day Out: Holy Moly, I posted about this one on Friday. In love with this site. AWESOME place to plug in your preferences and get tons of outing ideas and activities for kids!

5. Orange County Splash Parks (If the weather is nice!): Such a great list by my friends over at Just Spotted.

6. Parks and Playgrounds: All the parks and playgrounds I have posted on if you would like more ideas!

7. Fun Orange County Parks: Most complete resource guide on parks and playgrounds in Orange County!

8. Daytripping Mom: So Cal day trips for families.

9. Just Spotted OC Calendar: List of activities/events by day.

10. And here are all the Outing Ideas I have ever posted on!

Have a GREAT day everyone! What do you have planned?

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