Thursday, June 30, 2016

Petaluma Playground Guide

When I decided to come back to blogging again after my year break, I really wanted to start incorporating local places and events into my writing. The Bay Area has much to offer and sharing here has really helped keep me accountable to making the most out of us living here. In my Bay Area Kids Fun series, I review kid friendly places in the entire Bay Area and I also have started sharing local guides as well.   
Today I am sharing a city parks playground guide!

This guide is a comprehensive list of every city park that has a playground. I have included the types of play equipment, swings, sand, and any extras relevant to families. Also below I have added pictures of every playground as well.

The file is uploaded to Google Drive in PDF format, so click the link above or below to open it. You can download and either save it, print it, or screen shot it from your smartphone. That way you can always have it.

Anna's Meadows

Arroyo Park

Bond Park 

Del Oro Park 

Eagle Park 

Fox Hollow Park 

Grant Park 

Helen Putnam Park

Kenilworth Park 

LaTercera Park 

Leghorns Park 

Lucchesi Park 

Mannion Park 

McDowell Park 

McNear Park 

Meadow Park 

Miwok Park 

Oak Hill Park 

Riverview Park 

Southgate Park 

Walnut Park 

Westhaven Park 

Westridge Park 

Wiseman Airport Park 

Hope this is helpful to you all and feel free to share!

Monday, June 27, 2016

Day Date: North Beach Food Tour

At the beginning of this month, Mark and I had our 8 year dating anniversary (we are not married) and decided we wanted to do a little day trip to celebrate. Since moving from Illinois, we don't get to go out much alone, so we were both pretty excited about it. We live 30ish minutes away from Napa and wine country, but I don't drink so, although probably romantic, it doesn't do much for me. There is also the beach, but we like to do that with Myles. So I convinced Mark to do something in the city (he hates crowds and traffic), but had not a clue what that something was going to be. Naturally, I popped on Groupon. I love Groupon not only for the deals, but in a city as big as San Francisco, a focused and narrowed list is a must. This time it was an easy choice for us... "Walking Food Tour".. duh!!! The company does tours in 3 different neighborhoods, but the only one that worked for us was North Beach. Now going into this, I had no idea what kind of neighborhood North Beach was, and I probably should have looked into it before booking, but hey, food is food!

When we arrived our guide talked a bit about himself, the history of the area, and gave us an overview of the tour. The tour would be three hours long, we would stop at 5 places, and get a bit (which was really a LOT) of history along the way. I would say the tour was about 1/4 eating, 1/4 walking, and 1/2 history. But overall, we both loved the tour, food, and learning a ton about North Beach, which we found out is basically the Little Italy of San Francisco. 

First we had a sandwich at Molinari's: salami, mozzarella, pesto, red peppers. It was simple, but the ingredients were so fresh and authentic; I even ate the red peppers on it! 

Next was meatballs in red sauce and gnocchi in pesto sauce from Original US Restaurant. I was dying inside when he said we would be trying gnocchi. It literally melted in my mouth. 

Their original menu: under $1 for sandwiches and $2 for entrees!

The neighborhood right next to North Beach is Chinatown. They meet right at this intersection. In front of us was North Beach and this was the view behind us:


So much culture, history, and beauty in this city, it is truly incredible. 

Next next stop was a vegetarian Bolivian restaurant called Pena Pachamama. The owners are also Grammy winning Bolivian folk musicians, so we got to listen to some wonderful music while we sampled kale chips (out of this world), potatoes, and plantains.

Our last two stops were desserts. First we visited XOX Truffles to sample 100% handmade truffles. The owner and chef makes every single truffle by hand. He talked with us about his background and the process of making the truffles. He said that he could never trust anyone to even help in the process of making them, so all of the 50 dozen made daily are done exclusively by him. We each got to pick three truffles. Of course, I made sure Mark and I picked different ones so that I could get a bite of his as well. Sampling one bite of six is better than two bites of just three! 

This is peanut butter, hazelnut, and raspberry. The raspberry was the best by far!
We also walked by the famous St. Peter and Paul church where Marilyn Monroe and Joe DiMaggio took pictures after their civil ceremony (they weren't actually married here, they just took pictures for press and such).

Our last stop was cannolis at Cavalli Cafe. I have to be honest and let you all know that I have never eaten a cannoli prior to this. Because of that I have nothing to compare it to, but it was pretty good.

Before we found this walking food tour on Groupon, I didn't even know that such thing existed! And after talking with some other couples on the tour, apparently they are a thing all over the country! Now this is all I want to do in every place we travel to in the future! Learning about a new place, its history, experiencing the culture, and eating; winning all around!

Oh, and you can't leave San Francisco without some social commentary painted on a building:

Have you ever taken a walking food tour?

Thursday, June 23, 2016

#BOYMom Box Swap

Myles and I are quite excited about this post and sharing what we got in our BoyMom Box this year! About a year and a half ago, I shared why I love being a boy mom over on Elizabeth's blog for her Boy Mom Series. Since then she has ended the series, but now co-hosts (with Seeing All Sides and Wife Mommy Me) a yearly exchange for all boy mom bloggers. Myles lives for getting mail, especially when toys are inside, so I couldn't pass up the opportunity! Plus, I love getting to know new moms and their blogs... so win, win!

We were lucky enough to get paired with Meghan and Noah from The Adventure Starts Here! I'm really grateful to have been introduced to her and Noah. She has a great blog with tons of great content, and Noah is so smart, sweet, and cute! We talked a little about Myles' likes/dislikes, but Meghan really hit it out of the park with our box.

We got a great sampling of some of Myles' favorite things! My favorite thing to do with Myles is Play-Doh, so of course I was all over that! It instantly brings me back to my childhood. Meghan was so sweet and found a Froggy book for Myles. I mentioned to her that he really loves them, but I no idea she would actually be able to find one! We have been reading Froggy Bakes a Cake every night since.

I have mentioned several times here on this blog that I struggle with finding good bath toys. Meghan was so thoughtful to include two of Noah's favorites: Crayola Bath Crayons and Crayola Bath SquirtersMeghan also added a little something for momma! She got me a beautiful coral nail polish and some cute note cards. 

And within 5 minutes (no joke), we were in the bath playing:

Am I the only one that finds unused Play-Doh fresh out the can so satisfying!?!? 

Thanks again Chasin' Mason, Seeing All Sides, and Wife Mommy Me for putting this all together and Meghan and Noah for the perfect box!