Over The Top Mommy

Orange County

So You Think You Want Eyelash Extensions?

As a mommy who also works full-time, I don’t leave a lot of time for myself these days. I often times leave the house in outfits that wouldn’t exactly be classified as “thoughtfully planned out”. I also don’t take much time to do my hair or makeup on most days. I could probably win a spot on one of those frumpy mom makeover shows!

I’d seen other women before with lash extensions, but never looked into getting them. A mom friend of mine actually does lash extensions, so I decided to be adventurous. After trying out a full set for the first time, I realized how amazing they were, especially for someone like me who takes no time to get ready in the morning. With lash extensions, you can literally have not an ounce of makeup on and still look like you do.

Here’s what my eyelashes look like before my appointment.

Here’s what it looks like during a lash fill!

And the finished product! BAM!

I’m going to share a little bit about my own experience on this post so that others who may have been curious about trying them, might have some of their questions answered. I’m not a professional nor am I affiliated with a lash company in any way. I’m going to address some of the most common questions I’ve been asked since I’ve worn lash extensions.

“Don’t lash extensions make your own eyelashes fall out?” 

I think people have a HUGE misconception about lash extensions. I’ve heard many women comment about how lash extensions make your own lashes actually fall out. This is actually untrue. What they do is make you more aware of your own natural lash cycle. Our natural eyelashes fall out all the time. I know this to be true because I’ve made many wishes upon lashes that have fallen out. When you place lash extensions on top of real lashes, it doesn’t cause that to happen any quicker, you just pay more attention to it when they fall out with extensions. Your own eyelashes also grow back. It’s all cyclical.

I’ve been wearing lash extensions for about a year now and I’ve gone a couple different times without any on to give my lashes a break. (yes, you need to do that a couple times a year when your lash person recommends it) I still had lashes, they were just short and seemed way less dramatic than when I had the extensions on.  At that point you can wear mascara on your own natural lashes. It takes a few weeks without any lash extensions on, for your own lashes to regrow and seem full again. Last Christmas I took a 3 week break and by the end of the 3 weeks, my lashes were really getting back to “normal” in a natural way.

“Can you still wear makeup when you have lash extensions, specifically mascara?”

You can still wear makeup, yes. What your lash technician will suggest to you is that you make sure the makeup you’re wearing is oil-free, especially the eye makeup you’re wearing. There are certain brands that are actually NOT good to wear with lash extensions because they’ve been known to make your extensions have a quicker rate of falling out. I won’t name any brand names, but you can ask your lash person which brands of makeup you should avoid.

As far as wearing mascara, you don’t really need to wear mascara. I think it’s possible to wear some, but again, I’d ask your lash person about the mascara.

Overall, I find that I don’t wear as much makeup now. Lash extensions can fall off and they do. This is normal. I only wear full makeup when I’m going somewhere important and that is because I want to avoid any extra fallout. When you wash your face and you take your makeup off, you will lose a lash or a few. Obviously, the more often you wear eye makeup, the more often this could happen . This is also something you can discuss with your lash person.

“What’s the best way to care for your eyelash extensions?”

First of all, you have to brush your lashes and you have to do it carefully. Your lash person will give you a lash brush, which is basically just a clean mascara wand. You can get extra ones at any makeup counter. It’s what they use when they’re doing your makeup in a store and they don’t want to use the regular mascara wand on you.  You need to brush them because they’ll get “wonky” on you. When I say wonky, I literally mean you will wake up sometimes with lashes going all different ways. You need to use the brush to redirect them.

You need to keep your lashes clean if you want them to last. Your lash person will tell you how important this is. If you wear makeup, especially eye makeup, make sure you take it all off properly. (I use Almay oil-free eye makeup remover pads)

Something that might also help your lashes last longer is to apply a sealant. This is something you can buy from your lash person, so ask. This is especially important in the hot months.

I also recommend sleeping on your back, if you can. I already did this, but the less you lay on your face and eyelashes, the better for them.

And most importantly….DO NOT PICK THEM! At first you might be curious but I’ve seen people do this and all that you’re going to do is pull them out quicker and have less. Your lash person will thank you for not picking at your lashes.

“How often do you need to get your lashes done?” 

Your lashes should last you about 3 weeks in between fills. During the hotter months, you may need to go in about every 2 weeks. If you find someone you love to do your lashes, like I have, then it’s actually a treat to go for your appointment because not only are you getting prettied up, but you’re having some fun, girl time to chit chat!

“What length is good to start out with when you get eyelash extensions?”

I think I’ll be stating the obvious here when I say “go long!” If you’re worried about not looking natural or looking fake, then maybe lash extensions aren’t for you. They are there to give you that BAM look and every time I go in for my fill and she asks me how long I want them to be, I simply reply with “BAM!”

“Can you recommend someone who does lashes?” 

If you live in Orange County and would like a referral to the person I go to, I’d be happy to refer you if you email me at overthetopmommy@gmail.com. If you don’t, I’d recommend asking people in the area you live. I would also NOT recommend getting lashes on a coupon deal of an unknown. It’s very important that you go to someone who is experienced and knows what they’re doing. As with anything you might do to your body, there’s always a risk of allergic reaction or infection and you want to be working with someone that can recognize those things if they happen to you.

I hope my post about lash extensions has been helpful.

photo.PNG-6

If you have any more questions, feel free to email me!

Who’s Ready for Opening Weekend of the OC Fair?

Opening weekend of the 2014 OC Fair is almost here!  During the first hour of the 2014 Fair, Fairgoers can take advantage of free admission and parking during Free Opening Hour (Friday, July 11, Noon-1 p.m.) The Fair is open July 11 from Noon-Midnight and features the following promotions opening day and each Friday:

Seniors Day: $2 off Senior (60+) admission plus free Ferris wheel and merry-go-round rides all day
$2 Taste of Fair Food: Enjoy Fair food samples for only $2 from Noon-4 p.m.
$2 Rides & Games: Sold until 4 p.m.

The OC Fair will kick off its summer of headline entertainment with The Offspring / Adolescents in the Toyota Summer Concert Series at the Pacific Amphitheatre, Journey Unauthorized – A Tribute to Journey in The Hangar and X-Treme Freestyle Moto-X in the Action Sports Arena. Pacific Amphitheatre and The Hangar concert tickets and Action Sports Arena reserved seats include with free Fair admission for the same day so ticketholders are encouraged to come early and stay late.

New this year, the OC Fair will be host to the first-ever OC Brew Hee Haw (July 11-13) with craft beer tastings, demonstrations and exhibits. There will be five sessions with more than 60 craft beer selections from local breweries each. Each session costs $55 per person and includes free Fair admission. Visit ocbrewheehaw.com for details and tickets.

Other events during opening weekend of the 2014 OC Fair (July 12-13) include:

Saturday, July 12 (Open 10 a.m.-Midnight)

Which One’s Pink? – A Tribute to the Music of Pink Floyd in the Pacific Amphitheatre (8:15 p.m.)
Zeppelin Live – A Live Rock Tribute to Led Zeppelin in The Hangar (8:30 p.m.)
40th Annual Speedway Fair Derby in the Action Sports Arena (8 p.m.)

Sunday, July 13 (Open 10 a.m.-Midnight)

Matisyahu / Tribal Seeds / The Lions in the Pacific Amphitheatre (6 p.m.)The English Beat / The Debonaires in The Hangar (8:30 p.m.)

SummerFist VII – Mixed Martial Arts in the Action Sports Arena (6 p.m.)

Every Saturday & Sunday

Rise & Shine: $3 general admission (10 a.m.-11 a.m.)
Free Parking & Shuttle Service from the Experian parking structure located off Anton Blvd. off the Bristol St. exit of the northbound 405 freeway. Shuttle operates 10 a.m.-1 a.m.
OC Fair Express: Receive a coupon for $3 general admission for that day when using special routes directly from 9 different OCTA transit locations ($2 for one-way and $4 for round-trip). Visit octa.net/ocfairexpress for transit locations and times. Plus, Metrolink riders can catch a free ride on the OC Fair Express from the Anaheim Canyon, Santa Ana or Irvine stations simply by showing their Metrolink ticket. Visit metrolinktrains.com/ocfair for transit times and locations.

Throughout the 2014 OC Fair (July 11-August 10), Fairgoers can also enjoy:

Military Get in Free: Free admission everyday for active U.S. military and veterans with appropriate I.D.
Read & Ride Program: Children (ages 5-11) who read at least two books and submit a completed OC Fair Read & Ride Book Report Form (available online at ocfair.com/readandride) will receive three free carnival rides.

Free Exhibits and Events: Culinary displays in the OC Promenade, All-Alaskan Racing Pigs, Russell Brothers Family Fun Circus, educational exhibits and contests children in Explorium, garden exhibits in the Centennial Farm and more.
Visit ocfair.com/2014 for a full listing of each day’s offerings.

Are you getting excited about the fair yet? I know I am!

Discounts and Deals at the 2014 OC Fair!

photo credit: OC Fair

Get ready, Fairgoers….the 2014 OC Fair is offering discounts and deals for a summer of fun that’s wallet-friendly!

Savings at the Gates

Super Pass – Season pass to OC Fair funValid for one admission each day of the 2014 OC Fair for the pass holder plus 2-for-1 discounts on select concerts and events and a carnival savings book.  Prices: General (ages 13-59) $35, Senior (60+) & Youth (6-12) $28 (Available for purchase through August 8.)

Military Get in Free – Daily
Free admission for all veterans and active duty military with ID all day, every day
Opening Day Free Hour – Friday July 11 (Noon-1 p.m.)
Free admission and parking through all gates

We Care Wednesday – Free admission and one carnival ride per person with donation:

  • Food Drive – Wednesday, July 16 (Noon-3 p.m.) 5 canned food items
  • Children’s Book Drive – Wednesday, July 23 (Noon-3 p.m.) 1 new or 3 gently used children’s books
  • Clothing Drive – Wednesday, July 30 (Noon-3 p.m.) 5 clothing items (new or gently used)
  • School Supply Drive – Wednesday, August 6 (Noon-3 p.m.) School supplies valued at $5 or more (receipt required)

Kids Day – Every Thursday
Guests 12 and younger are admitted free all day

Seniors Day – Every Friday
Guests 60 and older receive a $2 discount on senior admission and can enjoy free rides on the Ferris wheel and merry-go-round.

Rise & Shine – Every Saturday & Sunday (10 a.m.-11 a.m.)
Pay only $3 during the opening hour on weekends
Savings Before You Get to the Fair

Crush Grapefruit – Bring a Crush Grapefruit soda can with the appropriate OC Fair coupon and receive $2 off full-price general admission.

OC Cities – Orange County residents can pick up a coupon for $2 off full-price general admission at their local city hall or library.

Free Off-site Weekend Parking (Saturday & Sunday, 10 a.m.-1 p.m.) – Free parking and shuttle service at the Experian parking structure off the Bristol St. exit of the I-405 freeway.

OC Fair Express (Friday-Sunday) – Enjoy direct bus service to the Fair from 8 convenient OCTA transit locations for only $2 each way ($4 round trip). Plus, riders receive a $3 general Fair admission coupon to use when they arrive at the Fair. Visit octa.net/ocfairexpress for more details.
Guests traveling from outside Orange County can jump on the Metrolink to Anaheim Canyon, Santa Ana or Irvine Metrolink stations to catch the OC Fair Express for free when they show their Metrolink ticket.
Savings Inside the Fair

Shop ‘Til You Drop – Every Thursday
Find special savings all day from select retail vendors. Look for the Olivia the Orange icon for savings.

$2 Taste of Fair Food – Every Friday, Noon-4 p.m.
Taste select Fair food for $2 each sample

$30 Unlimited Ride Wristband – Every Wednesday and Thursday, Sold until 5 p.m. and ride until 8 p.m. Unlimited rides in the Main Midway and Kiddie Carnival plus 2 free games

$2 Rides & $2 Games – Every Friday, Noon-4 p.m. All rides and games are $2 each

Read & Ride – Daily
Children (ages 5-11) who read 2 books and submit a completed book report form to the Centennial Farm Information Booth will receive three free carnival ride passes. Official book report form is available at ocfair.com.

With so many different discounts available, I think we’re going to be visiting the 2014 OC Fair several times this year!

I’m leaning towards the Super Pass! What about YOU?

(image courtesy of OC Fair)

 

The 2014 OC Fair: Summer Starts Here!

We are counting down the days until the 2014 OC Fair begins! The theme this year is Summer Starts Here and I can’t think of a more appropriate theme for the kickoff of summer! This year’s  fair will run from July 11-August 10!  It’s going to be 23 days of food, rides, exhibits, animals, music, action sports and fun! In addition to all of that, the venue also features the Toyota Summer Concert Series at the Pacific Amphitheatre and events in The Hangar and Action Sports Arena. I think everyone needs to check out the Super Pass option. It’s offered at one price and gives you entrance into the fair for the entire 23 days plus a bunch of other benefits. To get more info about the Super Pass and to purchase online, click here.

When I look back at some of our pictures from last year’s fair, I get even more excited about it! We absolutely LOVE visiting the farm animals, especially the piglets and the chicks! The farm is the first place we walk through each year when we get into the fair. Emi even thinks it’s fun to milk the pretend cow!

cow says moo

2 fingers

pet a lamb

piglets

faux milking

Emily also loves going on the kiddie rides. Sadly, she’s getting so tall that I don’t know how much longer she’ll be able to ride on them.

rides collage

It wouldn’t be a trip to the fair without some of the delicious fair food. We are always anxious to see what new items will be featured each year in the fried foods category, but honestly, I don’t think there’s anything that can beat the BBQ corn!

new food collage

corn closeup

The Fair is open Wednesday-Sunday. Concert tickets, action sports reserved seats, single-day general admission and the popular Super Pass are available for purchase online at ocfair.com or from the on-site Box Office. Free parking and shuttle service are available on Saturdays and Sundays from the Experian parking structure located off the Bristol St. exit of the 405 freeway.

What are YOU most excited about at this year’s fair? 

Is it something you want to see, something you want to ride, or something you’re excited to eat?

Keep Children at Play Safe with Summer Road Safety Tips from Waste Management

Long summer days mean more time playing outside for children in Orange County. Waste Management of Orange County is encouraging parents to talk with their kids about being safe while playing outside and to watch for the company’s waste and recycling trucks from a safe distance.

This is Jesus Santos, a driver for Waste Management of Orange County.  As a worker in the community, he is genuinely concerned about the safety of children playing outside during the day when he’s working.

waste management

“Children can be especially curious about our trucks and are always tempted to take a closer look when the trucks are stopped. But, the trucks have many moving parts that could begin moving again at any moment so we encourage everyone to watch from a distance.”

The drivers at Waste Management of Southern California have created a list of recommendations for staying safe around service vehicles:

  • Garbage trucks, recycling vehicles, postal vehicles and other package delivery services keep regular schedules within each neighborhood so learn which days these vehicles will be in your area.
  • It takes service vehicles about twice as long to stop as a passenger car, so never cut in front of or stop suddenly in front of one. Always keep a safe distance from a truck.
  • Vehicles like Waste Management trucks make frequent stops and often back up, so don’t follow the truck closely on a bike, skateboard, rollerskates or rollerblades.
  • Every Waste Management truck is equipped with a back-up alarm. Whether you are walking or driving near one of our trucks, be sure to move out of the way if you hear this sound or see the white back-up lights.
  • Keep children and pets at a safe distance from the truck. Never get near or climb on the truck and do not play or stand in trash bins or cans, since you may not know when the truck is coming to empty them. Always keep portable basketball hoops away from trash bins or cans, and never on the street.
  • Do not attempt or allow children to help with loading any garbage into the truck. In addition to moving truck parts, debris can fall out of the truck when its contents are being compressed.
  • Be mindful of smartphone use. Don’t text or use earplugs while crossing streets.

Have a fun and safe summer!

ABOUT WASTE MANAGEMENT
Waste Management Inc., based in Houston, Texas, is the leading provider of comprehensive waste management services in North America. Through its subsidiaries, the company provides collection, transfer, recycling and resource recovery and disposal services. It is also a leading developer, operator and owner of waste-to-energy and landfill gas-to-energy facilities in the United States. The company’s customers include residential, commercial, industrial and municipal customers throughout North America. To learn more about Waste Management, visit http://www.wm.com or http://www.thinkgreen.com.

Look What’s Joining The Shops at Mission Viejo This Summer!

I love to keep in the loop about local events and happenings at my local mall, The Shops at Mission Viejo. The center has some new and excited additions coming this summer. Patsy Sanquist, the direct of marketing and business development for the center was quoted as saying, “We’re proud to continue to offer new shopping and dining experiences at The Shops at Mission Viejo. Sperry Top-Sider and Blaze Pizza will make perfect additions for the summer.” 
Sperry Top-Sider, the leading nautical performance and lifestyle footwear brand and inventor of the world’s first boat shoe, is set to open a 1,783-square-foot store on the upper level of The Shops at Mission Viejo, near Center Court and across from the Microsoft Store. An icon of American style for more than 75 years, Sperry Top-Sider offers a full range of Sperry men’s, women’s and children’s lifestyle and performance footwear, including sea-worthy sandals, comfortable dress shoes and performance boat shoes, as well as unique Sperry branded and curated apparel and accessories. Also slated to open this summer, the leading build your own artisanal pizza chain Blaze Pizza will offer signature “fast fire’d” pizzas in a blazing hot oven while guests view the creation process. Diners can also create their own pizza by choosing from more than 40 fresh-made sauces, hand-selected vegetables and a variety of artisanal meats and cheeses. In addition, the menu features signature salads, fresh lemonades, and house-made S’more Pies. For pizza fans with specific dietary needs, Blaze Pizza offers gluten-free dough and vegan cheese. Blaze Pizza is slated to open a roughly 880-square-foot space in The Shops at Mission Viejo’s food court. 
I’m so excited for both of these openings. It’s just know it’s going to be a great summer at The Shops at Mission Viejo! 
For more information, visit The Shops at Mission Viejo on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/ShopsAtMissionViejo, Twitter at https://twitter.com/ShopsMV or Instagram at http://instagram.com/ShopsMV.

Disclosure: This is a sponsored post. I was provided with information by The Shops at Mission Viejo.

The Time Farrell’s SAVED My Daughter’s Birthday Party AND My Sanity

Here’s the back story: 
In case you didn’t know or hadn’t guessed, I’m the kind of mom who LOVES to throw a house party every year for my daughter’s birthday! I love to plan all of the details, far in advance, utilize Pinterest a ton throughout the entire planning period, seek out unique things to incorporate into the party and find vendors who are amazing but haven’t been very well known (yet). From the invitations to the coordinating printables to the custom cookies and the favors, I love all of it! 
I don’t know what happened this year? I started out with a fun theme in mind for Emily’s 9th birthday, even had a few amazing ideas in my “party notebook”  during the first few months of planning. What happened after that was just a series of hurdles followed by some awful events. The week prior to Emi’s birthday was the MOST challenging for me! Some of the obstacles I attempted to overcome included: a water leak in our ceiling, construction of that area, a majorly unexpected auto repair, a district walk through at my workplace, a heat wave paired with Santa Ana winds, a lady who was coming to do a little spa for the girls backing out, my inability to book someone new to come and do the party and probably the worst thing…..my daughter learning 3 days before her party that the cheer program she’d been in for almost 4 years, with the same coaches, was going to cease to exist as she’d known it! Yep, I had to inform her as I picked her up from school that day and then rush her to try out someplace new with some of her friends, all of which had bloodshot red eyes from crying! I cannot describe how horrible it felt to watch her become uncontrollably emotional and pretty much cry her little eyes out for the two days leading up to her party! 
Needless to say, by Thursday, I knew I had to make a Plan B for WHAT I was going to do to modify this party I was having the next day, with 13 little girls, since I’d had ZERO time to get things ready while dealing with all of the previous. 

Friday, May 2nd

I woke up at 3:45 a.m. and sat straight up in bed, suddenly wide awake. It was the day of Emily’s party. A thought came to mind…Farrell’s! We are HUGE Farrell’s lovers and there’s one very close to our home inside The Shops at Mission Viejo. I went online just to look at the kids menu and saw that there was any area to make a reservation online. I assumed it would only take a reservation for small parties but sure enough, when I entered my date, time and number in our party (13 kids and 3 adults) it took my reservation! I think I let out a big sigh of relief at that point. I think I knew right then, at 4 a.m., that everything was going to be OK.

I remember taking a picture of my laptop screen after I made my online reservation at 4 a.m. because I so overjoyed!

We’ve been to Farrell’s a couple of different times over the past few months, including the amazing grand opening at their newest Buena Park location AND Barbie’s birthday celebration at The Shops at Mission Viejo. I don’t think it’s possible to visit a Farrell’s without having an amazing time! Each of their locations exudes a crazy amount of positive energy and the food and nostalgia are something extra special for me that remind me of my own childhood .
I actually called Farrell’s around 10 a.m. that morning, just to double check with the manager on duty that they’d gotten my online reservation and that it was going to work out for a party our size.  I spoke with “Steven”  and he was so helpful on the phone and he confirmed that he did have my reservation. He asked me a few questions about our party and we decided together that our party would best be seated up front, in the area closest to the ice cream bar. It’s the location where you get the most drum action and that’s a biggie, right? Steven then reviewed the staff scheduled to work that evening and let me know that he’d be having “Michael” as our server, reassuring me that we’d be in good hands. This literally brightened up my day and I hung up smiling.
When I picked up Emily from school that day and told her about the slight change in our party plans, she had a huge smile on her face! She thinks she’s this big Farrell’s VIP because she’s hung with the best of the Farrell’s peeps at some of their different locations! In her world, this party would just be one more event that she could add to her Farrell’s repertoire!
Upon our arrival, it was such a pleasure to meet the manager on duty, Steven. He greeted us at the front desk and made Emily feel special, mentioning that he already knew it was her birthday and giving her a special birthday sticker to wear! He had mustache stickers and menus for all of the girls to color and led us to our table, which was already set up. Steven was so considerate that he even sat the 3 adults at our own table, separate from the table of 13 screaming girls! It was like the reverse of having “a kids table”!

Our server, Michael, came right over to the girls’ table and was ready to get the party started! He was so patient with all of them. I don’t know HOW he had the patience to deal with the craziness of 13 screaming 9 year olds but I can confirm that the guy was like an instant hit with the girls! (obviously)

I can’t even say enough good things about our server, Michael!

I need to point out something else that amazed me about our server…his knowledge of the Farrell’s menu. I’m not talking about their regular menu…I mean the fact that when we informed him about one of the girls who is “gluten-free”, he turned to us and said, “you don’t have to worry, I have A LOT of knowledge about this and I will take care of her!” He then went and grabbed one of their gluten-free menus and helped her with her special order. I think that was the point he definitely won the 2 moms over in our party! (Farrell’s also offers a “nut allergy” and “egg allergy” menu for guests)

Farrell’s has a gluten free menu!
They also have “nut allergy” and “egg allergy” items!

Michael kept the Shirley Temples and strawberry lemonades flowing at the girls’ table! I must’ve apologized to him about 100 times for all of the screaming and craziness coming from their table and he just kept telling me NOT to apologize and let me know that he works with kids like this every day and enjoys it! Ha! And here I was thinking I was the crazy one!

As if the girls weren’t already excited just to be hanging out, 
they let out some extra noise when dinner arrived table side. 
The Kids Mac and Cheese seemed to be a big hit at our table!
I ordered the Grown Up Grilled Cheese!

Dinner was a success and we ready to move onto the best part of all! The girls knew what would come next…a special birthday sundae, a special birthday song and a whole lotta drum….. all in honor of Emily’s 9th birthday! 

The singing hadn’t even started and she was already blushing!
This video can give you a good idea of what it’s like to celebrate your birthday at Farrell’s! (I think Emi was trying to hide) 
And then they all dug into their own kid sundaes! Mmm!
The kids sundaes are a good size and so yummy!

By this point I was so relieved and so pleased at how everything had worked out. It wasn’t just a birthday meal out but a total celebration and all because of everything that Farrell’s has to offer in its dining experience. I just have to say “Thank you, Farrell’s!” not only for saving my daughter’s birthday party this year, but for also saving my sanity! We will be back soon! 

The girls had so much fun at Emily’s birthday celebration at Farrell’s!
For more information about Farrell’s and to check out their regular menu, as well as information about parties, click here.

 

 

Our Perfect Day at the Irvine Park Railroad’s Eggstravaganza

We had so much fun spending an afternoon at the Irvine Park’s Easter Eggstravaganza, which is located inside of Irvine Regional Park. 

In addition to the beautiful natural scenery, it’s all decorated for Easter too! Everywhere you turn, there are adorable children, dressed up in their best spring outfits. It’s the perfect setting and occasion to photograph some precious moments, that’s for sure!

The Eggstravaganza features so many different activities to choose from that we weren’t sure where to start. 
The activities include: 
     *Easter egg hunts
     *Photos with the Easter Bunny
     *Train rides
     *Hay rides
     *Cookie decorating
     *Face painting
     *A bunny bounce house
     *Various picture stands for photo opportunities
     *Carnival games

So, we basically decided to do them all! 

I loved how organized the Easter egg hunt was. We first obtained a wristband for the age-appropriate time for Emi. They created very fair rules for the children, first sitting them all down together, to explain the rules for the hunt, discussing how many eggs they could “find” and take home in their baskets, as well as other candy they might find on the ground. The kids were so excited to get started and sprinted at the cue to begin. 

Although we remembered to bring our own basket, they do have baskets for sale there, as well. 

Emi was mesmerized by how much candy there was in the egg hunt area, in addition to the eggs! 
After the egg hunt, we strolled over to visit the Easter Bunny. He was extremely interactive with the Emily, first playing peek-a-boo with her, which helped make her unafraid to sit with him. That’s something that might be a relief for parents with hesitant children. 

Pictures like this, melt my heart!

Apparently visiting the Easter Bunny makes you hungry, so we stopped by the snack shack for some freshly popped popcorn, before heading on over to the face painting area!

The artists in the face painting booth that would create each child’s ideal design for them. Emi let her artist know that she preferred more of an arm design, as opposed to having her face painted. 

She loved her “tattoo” so much, that I think she hid from the water in the shower hitting that arm for as long as she could! 

I loved all of the different photo opportunities there were throughout the area. Emi tried to convinced me to get in this one, but I let her do the honors! 

I love this one! My little chick!

I was most startled by this one..it shows how tall Emi is getting! She’s only 8! Wow! 

Next, we hopped aboard the train, which for me, is the best part of the entire thing. There’s just something about trains that reminds me of childhood! Emi chose to sit directly behind the engineer! We took the token “train selfie” as we relaxed on the long ride.

For our finale, we visited the cookie decorating booth, where Emi got her very own sugar cookie to decorate with colored frostings and sprinkles. What more could a kid ask for? 

It was such a fun afternoon. 
Head on over before the fun ends on April 19th! 



Irvine Park Railroad Easter Eggstravaganza 2014 & Giveaway

If you have ever been to Irvine Regional Park, you know how much amazing family fun it has to offer! Among some of the activities you can do are hiking, biking ( they even have bike rentals), rent paddle boats, pony rides, visit the Orange County Zoo, and even have a picnic!  If you’ve never been, you need to take your family there right away! 
One of our favorite things to do in the park is to ride the Irvine Park Railroad. In past years, we’ve gone in December for the Irvine Park Railroad’s Santa Train and festivities! 
This year we’re excited to visit for it’s annual Easter Eggstravaganza, which begins on Saturday, March 29th and runs through Saturday, April 19th! Children and adults can ride the train through beautiful Irvine Regional Park. Children, ages 2 through 12 years old, also have the opportunity to participate in an Easter egg hunt, hunting for eggs that are each filled with either candy or a prize.  
You can purchase tickets for your child(ren) to participate in the Easter egg hunts, which begin at 10:00 AM daily. Tickets will be exchanged for a wristband which will indicate a specific time for the egg hunt they’ll be participating in. Don’t forget to bring an Easter basket for each child who is participating in the Easter egg hunt. Irvine Park Railroad will also offer Easter baskets for purchase. Tickets must be purchased on the day of the event, in order to receive a wristband for the Easter egg hunt. Please visit http://www.irvineparkrailroad.com for complete details on the Easter egg hunts, including times and costs.

During the Easter Eggstravaganza, children can meet the Easter Bunny at a cost of $10.00 per family or group. This cost includes a picture that will be taken by Irvine Park Railroad staff and available for pickup shortly after the picture is taken.

There will be other activities to enjoy during the Easter Eggstravaganza including hay rides, a moon bounce, Easter cookie decorating, carnival games, face painting, picture stands and a lot more. Please visit http://www.irvineparkrailroad.com for full details including costs.

Irvine Park Railroad’s other annual events include the Anniversary Celebration, Pumpkin Patch, and Christmas Train.

Become a fan of Irvine Park Railroad on Facebook, follow us onInstagram (Irvine Park Railroad), view pictures on Flickr, and follow our tweets on twitter (@IrvineParkRR).
While at Irvine Regional Park, be sure and visit the parks other activities including Wheel Fun Rentals® at Irvine Park bike and paddle boat rentals, pony rides and the Orange County Zoo.

The park entrance fee – charged by the County of Orange – is $3.00 per vehicle on weekdays and $5.00 per vehicle on weekends.
Irvine Park Railroad opens daily at 10:00 AM. The cost for train tickets is $5.00 per person; children younger than 12 months ride free. Irvine Park Railroad is located at 1 Irvine Park Road, Orange, CA 92869.

We can’t wait to go to the Easter Eggstravaganza 2014! 
Emi already has her outfit and her Easter basket ready to go! 
Now for the giveaway….you can enter to win 6 tickets (which can be used to ride the train OR participate in Easter Eggstravaganza activities) and 1 Wheel Fun Rentals at Irvine Park surrey rental (excludes double surrey)! Enter the giveaway in the Rafflecopter below! 
Good luck to everyone! 
 

a Rafflecopter giveaway
Giveaway open to U.S. Residence. No purchase necessary to enter. All fans have an equal chance to win, however, you must enter to win. A winner will be randomly selected via RaffleCopter and notified via email. No cash value. Winner will have 36 hours to claim their prize or a new winner will be selected the same way. Several different ways to earn entries. Not liable for unclaimed prizes or fulfillment. Sponsor has the right to refuse filling prize for duplicate winners from other blogs. Winner’s tickets will be mailed directly to home (or mailing address) and will not be available for will call at this event. 

photos courtesy of Irvine Park Railroad