Friday, July 26, 2013

Child Car Seat Safety Class

Presbyterian Intercommunity Hospital in Whittier offers education workshops for the community. This workshop is particular for families with young children:

Child Passenger Safety
Wednesday, August 21, 6-7:30PM
PIH Health wants to keep kids safe. That's why we partnered with the Auto Club to offer a child passenger safety class that is perfect for parents, grandparents, and caregivers. Learn how to select t the right car seat, correctly secure children, and safety laws. Reservations required. Free. Call 714-885-2312 or visit

Families unsure of car seat installation can also make an appointment with their local CHP station for a lesson and to have their child's car seat professionally installed by a trained officer.

Babysitting Workshop for Teens

Presbyterian Intercommunity Hospital in Whittier offers education workshops for the community. This workshop is particular for teens:

"Babysitting is Not Child's Play: A Workshop for Teens"
Saturday, August 17, 9-2pm
This day-long seminar trains teen ages 12 and older in the care of infants and toddlers. Training includes first aid,  fire and accident safety, and creative play activities.  Participants should bring a sack lunch. PIH provides complimentary drinks. Non-refundable class fee of $5 required to register. Call 562-698-0811, ext. 18302. 

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Junior Rancher Program, for ages 7-12: Pio Pico State Park

Junior Ranger program for ages 7-12 at Pio Pico State Park!

Saturday, July 27
Saturday, August 3
11:00 -12:30pm

The program is free. Call 562-695-1217 to make a reservation.

For more information about Pio Pico State Park visit

Jamba Juice Kids Day! Free Smoothies for Kids! 7/27

Kids can get a free Smoothie at Jamba Juice on Saturday, July 27 from 11am - 4pm!


Lego Chima Event: Toys R Us, 7/27

Visit any Toys R Us store on Saturday, Jul 27 from 12-2pm for a Lego Chima event. Usually the Toys R Us Lego events include a mini-model that kids build in the store and take home for free. This event says that kids can build a Speedorz Challenge. Arrive early, supplies are limited. Events only occur at regular Toys R Us locations, they do not occur at Express or Outlet stores.

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Movies @ Pico Park: Pico Rivera, Fridays 7/19-8/9

Fridays, July 19 - August 9
8:30 PM
Pico Park, 9528 Beverly Blvd
Bring blankets and chairs. Free popcorn!
July 19: Madagascar 3, PG
July 26: Wreck It Ralph, PG
August 2: Thunderstruck, PG
August 9: The Pirates Band/Misfits, PG

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Summer Shopping for Teens at the Shops at Montebello

I am fortunate to be the Official Blogger for the Shops at Montebello and this month I was given a $50 Shops at Montebello gift card and the assignment to entertain the kids during summer vacation.'s new intern, Veronica is a high school student. She helped give this shopping trip a teen focus.

When I told Veronica this month's assignment was hers, she knew exactly where she wanted to go. Claire's. I haven't been to Claire's in a number of years and only allow my daughters to window shop or watch the babies cry when getting their ear's pierced, and rightly so. The store is a glittery wonderland for girls of all ages. I just know they would cry, beg, and plead for me to buy them everything in sight!

Every Claire's rack and display has something to makes a girl's eyes go wide with bubblegum scented excitement. If a girl wanted to have a Glamour Girl party, Claire's could be the one and only stop for supplies. The store carries makeup, hair accessories, jewelry, and glitter, so much glitter! There is a section called "Claire's Club" with items tailored for little girls complete with tiaras, birthday sashes, fairy wings, and merchandise featuring kid-friendly characters from television.

Here is what Veronica picked up:

GelATO nail polish, $7.50 each, Buy One, Get One 50% off. Claire's.
Quad-Color Eye Shadow in "Purple Smokey", $7.50. Cream Eyeliner, $5.50.
6 Piece Makeup Brush Kit, $8.50. Makeup Accessories are Buy One Get One 50% off. Claire's.
Veronica calls this Pre-Wrap and says it's useful when she's on the field with her sports teams. She uses it to prevent blisters, for a headband, ponytail holder, and with a 20 yards of stretchy foam per roll, she happily shares with friends.
Sport Foam Wrap & Ribbon, $2. Claire's.

The total at the register was $44.15. We earned two Claire's Bonus Bucks which allows us to return in August to save $10 off any $20+ purchase.

With about $6 left on the Shops at Montebello gift card Veronica introduced me to all that F.Y.E. has to offer. Beyond the CDs and DVDs, FYE has items related to popular movies, television, and music along the back wall. There are mugs, hats, belts, shirts, collectibles, music accessories, and magazines. The magazine section carried selections such as Tiger Beat, Rolling Stone, Geek, and Tattoo. Veronica found what she was looking for right way, it included her favorite band, One Direction:

Pop Star! Magazine, $4.99. F.Y.E.
It was fun and interesting shopping at the Shops at Montebello with a teenager. I am sure the makeup, nail polish, and magazine will keep her busy this summer.

A special thanks to the Shops at Montebello for sponsoring this shopping trip!
Please visit the Shops at Montebello Facebook or Twitter pages!

15¢ Hot Dogs & 10¢ Soda at Wienerschnitzel Montebello! Sunday, 7/21

Sunday, July 21
15¢ hot dogs at Wienerschnitzel!

The Wienerschnitzel at 2501 Beverly Blvd. in Montebello is also offering 12 oz. Pepsi or Diet Pepsi drinks for only 10¢ from Noon-5pm only!

The Montebello location is open from 9am-Midnight on Sundays.

$2 Tuesday: AMF Beverly Lanes

Look what I found in my inbox!
Combine the $2 shoe rental with the Kids Bowl Free program and you are set for a fun activity for the kids! No coupon necessary!
AMF Beverly Lanes located at 1201 W. Beverly Blvd, Montebello, and is open from 10am-11pm on Tuesday 7/16.

Bike Ride with the Mayor of Montebello, Montebello City Hall, 7/21

 Bike Ride with the Mayor of Montebello
Sunday, July 21
Montebello City Hall, 1600 W. Beverly Blvd.

For more information visit:

Monday, July 15, 2013

L.A. County Arboretum: Free Admission Every 3rd Tuesday

The Los Angeles County Arboretum & Botanic Gardens offers a free admission day the 3rd Tuesday of every month. Open 9am-4:30pm. Parking is free. No outside food or drink allowed.

Free admission days for 2013 are: July 16, August 20, September 17, October 15, November 19, and December 17.

Admission is typically $9 for adults, $4 for children 5-12, children under 5 are free.


Kidgits Safe Summer Event: Shops at Montebello, 7/20

The Shops at Montebello Kidgits program is hosting a "Safe Summer" event Saturday, July 20 from Noon-2pm. Children can join the Kidgits club for $5. Membership comes with a t-shirt, birthday gift, a spin on the wheel with prize with every visit to the mall, and admission to all Shops at Montebello Kidgit events. For more information visit the Shops at Montebello Facebook page.

Build a Free Lego Friends Jewelry Box: Lego Stores, 8/1

Visit any Lego Store on Thursday, August 1 at 5pm and kids can participate in a free Lego Mini-Build.  This mini-build is in addition to the monthly build on the first Tuesday of the month. For more information about Lego mini-build events click here.

Friday, July 12, 2013

Willy Wonka Jr Performance: Montebello Library

Cantwell-Sacred Heart of Mary High School Children's Summer Theatre Program will perform selections from the musical,
Willy Wonka Jr.
at the Montebello Library, Saturday, July 13 from 2:00-3:00pm. An art activity will follow the performance.


Thursday, July 11, 2013

School Supply Shopping Advice

I wrote this article in August of 2011. I thought I'd bring it up again since I'm already seeing Back to School sales in the Sunday paper.

My husband just left to take my son out school supply shopping. As I was doling out advice about what he should look for I thought I'd share what I learned from 12 years of teaching middle school. I've seen it all, backpacks with stuck zippers, binders held together with duct tape, dried out markers, and too many broken colored pencils to count. Making good decisions now can save your, and the teacher's, sanity later.

Backpacks: If your child tends to be disorganized get a backpack with as few features as possible. The fewer places a student has to look through to find something the better. Many JanSport backpacks have only one large opening for binders/books and one pocket on the outside for smaller supplies.

Binders: Buy a simple 3 ring binder with a clear cover so the kid can decorate it with photos, pictures, etc. It's best to buy the binder with rings that are located on the back cover, the papers tend to not tear or bunch up as much with opening and closing. Buy a few; there is a high probability that in a few months the binder will need to be replaced.

If your child is going to carry a spiral planner or pencil case in the binder buy the binder at least 1/2" wider than what is required. Larger binders may come with a black "V" shaped insert, that should remain at the back of the binder, it prevents pages in the back from getting wrinkled.

If you have an active or disorganized child do not buy an expensive fabric covered zippered binder. The binder rings will get misaligned in a few months and you'll get upset because you spent $15+ on a fancy binder that is ruined.

Paper: Loose-leaf, standard blue lines with red margins lines on the side is best. Wide ruled for elementary grades and college ruled for middle/high school.

Buy spiral notebooks only upon a teacher's request. When students rip out the pages from a spiral notebook it's often difficult to align several papers when they only have a few seconds at the stapler, or they take a lot of time trying to rip off the page at the perforation to get it perfect. Also, many students tend to undo the metal or plastic spiral on the notebook which can cause a distraction in the classroom.

If a teacher suggests spiral notebooks for note taking, ask if your child can use a composition book as an alternative. Composition books are bound with string, have thick covers, and never fall apart.

Markers: Crayola markers are the best! Roseart markers are fine for a while, but they dry out very quickly. If you are going to buy Roseart markers buy 2 or 3 packs to last the year. If you need more color variety, Pentel can't be beat and are perfect for middle/high school students. If your child wants Sharpies just say no; they are banned in many schools as they are used in most all tagging incidents.

Colored Pencils: Crayola all the way. Only sharpen with a hand held sharpener and twist three times then check to see if the point is good enough to use. If the pencils are sharpened to a fine point, there is a 50% chance that the point will break off. Roseart pencils are second best.

Do not sharpen colored pencils with an automatic pencil sharpener, it loses about 1/2" with each sharpening. Middle school kids use colored pencils.

Crayons: Crayola and Roseart are both equal in quality. Roseart has the name of the color written in large capital letters, making it easier for little kids to read, but Crayola crayons have a wider diameter and tend not to break as easily.

Pencils: Dixon-Ticonderoga are the easiest to sharpen and the points rarely break off. Pencils covered in a decorative plastic wrap or painted in fashion designs are not always the best quality. 

Mechanical pencils are fine, but make sure that your child has plenty of extra lead. First time mechanical pencil users or kids who write with a heavy hand should use 0.7mm or 0.9mm size lead, the thicker lead does not break as easily.

Pencil Sharpener: A 2-hole sharpener is great, if one hole gets clogged with a broken lead, you can sharpen in the other hole. My favorite is the Foray 2-hole sharpener, I've had mine for years and it still works great. Battery operated pencil sharpeners should be left at home.

Pens:  A click pen that does not unscrew is the best option. Many click pens can be unscrewed at the center and when opened the small pieces can get lost or the child will not be able to reassemble the pieces in a timely manner to continue with notes.

Correction Fluid: White Out or Liquid Paper is banned in many schools due to inhalation hazards. Pens are generally not a requirement for everyday use, so there should be little need for correction fluid or correction tape in the classroom. Keep the bottle at home.

Glue: Kids generally will not have to take glue to school every day, but it's a good idea to have some at home. White glue is best for elementary students, a single bottle will probably last the year. Glue sticks are better suited for older students. Some glue sticks are tinted and dry clear, making it easier to see where the glue has been spread, buy several sticks to last the year.

Ruler: My favorite is a totally flat clear plastic 12" ruler with inches and centimeters marked. The transparency makes drawing straight even lines a breeze, and the increment lines are crisp and clear for measuring. Folding rulers often do not have all the increments and are difficult to read.

Scissors: A set of quality scissors can last throughout a child's school career. Fiskars has a great reputation of quality and durability. 5" Rounded or blunt tip scissors are best for smaller kids and can do the job throughout middle school, but kids with larger hands will be more comfortable with a 7" pair.

Locks: Children in middle and high schools may be required to purchase a lock for a locker. Usually the combination locks  are sold only at school The locks are unique to the school and take a master key to open from the back so staff has access. Usually locks can be passed down from older siblings.

"Hey, can I borrow a pencil?"
Have a talk with your child about lending or giving school supplies to other students. Some kids give freely, many chose to share only with friends, some lend supplies begrudgingly, while others refuse all requests. Have the discussion with your child so they know how to respond when asked, "Let me have a piece of paper, yeah?"


Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Work from Home Job Fair: Downey, 8/24

Learn about income opportunities that are available in the home at the "Work from Home Job Fair" in Downey on Saturday, August 24.

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Concerts in the Park: Schabarum Park, Rowland Heights, Tuesdays, 7pm

Concerts in the Park 2013

Peter F. Schabarum Regional Park
17250 East Colima Road
Rowland Heights, CA 91748

Free Admission & Free Parking. Bring something to sit on such as a blanket or low chairs. Picnics are allowed or purchase food from the vendors.

Friday, July 5, 2013

Free Friday Night Flicks, Pershing Square, Downtown L.A. Fridays 7/5-9/27

Pershing Square in Downtown L.A. is hosting free outdoor movies on Fridays at 8:30 pm from July 5 to September 27.  Movies are projected on a 40ft x 20ft screen.  Bring lawn chairs, picnic baskets and well behaved pets.  Food will be available for sale. Please note the movie ratings, some films are not appropriate for children.

7/5: Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, PG
7/12: Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure, PG
7/19: Thelma and Louise, R
7/26: Swingers, R
8/2: American Pop, R
8/9: Persepolis, PG-13
8/16: Yellow Submarine, G
8/23: Wall-E, G
8/30: The Adventures of Tin-Tin, PG
9/6: Fast Times at Ridgemont High, R
9/13: Election, R
9/20: Remember the Titans, PG
9/27: Clueless, PG-13

Parking is available for $7 at the Pershing Square garage, located under the park; or you can ride Montebello Bus Line 40 from Beverly Blvd to 5th and Olive.

Pershing Square, 532 S. Olive St., Downtown L.A.

Outdoor Film Festival: Pasadena

Old Pasadena is hosting an outdoor summer film festival throughout July. All movies are free and open to the public. Some movies may not be appropriate for children, please refer to the Old Pasadena Film Festival website for descriptions of the movies or visit for more information.

Movies are shown at three different locations.
  • One Colorado Courtyard, 41 Hugus Alley, Pasadena: chairs provided. Start time 8:30PM
  • Distant Lands, 20 S. Raymond Ave., Pasadena: chair provided. Start time 8:00PM
  • Central Park, 99 S. Raymond Ave., Pasadena: Bring your own chairs/blankets. Start time 8:30PM
Friday, July 5: The Endless Summer, Annie Hall, The Ring
Saturday, July 6: The Great Gatsby
Sunday, July 7: Chicago
Thursday, July 11: The Haunting
Friday, July 12: Midnight in Paris, The Fantastic Mr. Fox
Saturday, July 13: Mars Attacks!, Mildred Pierce
Friday, July 19: White Silk Road/The Bus, True Grit
Saturday, July 20: The Third Man, Ocean's Eleven
Sunday, July 21: Men in Black
Thursday, July 25: Young Frankenstein
Friday, July 26: 180 Degrees South, The Sleeper
Saturday, July 27: Groundhog Day, The Night of the Hunter

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

$3 Summer Night Movies: AMC

$3 movies are offered at AMC theatres this summer to benefit three non-profit organizations.

Django Unchained, July 1-3
The Amazing Spiderman, July 8-10
The Hunger Games, July 15-17
Olympus Has Fallen, July 22-24
Oz The Great and Powerful, July 29-31
G.I. Joe: Retaliation, August 5-7
Oblivion, August 12-14

The movies are offered at selected AMC theatres, the closest is Atlantic Time Square in Monterey Park, and show times are at 10pm.

A special thanks to Maria P-D. for sharing the information!