Holidays

Ice Skating Fun at Snoopy's Home Ice in Santa Rosa

December 21, 2016

Snoopy's Home Ice Redwood Empire Ice ArenaOne of our must-do family tradions during the holidays is to visit Snoopy's Home Ice, as well as the Charles M. Schulz Museum right next door. The arena was a gift to the North Bay community from the late Santa Rosa resident and Peanuts cartoonist Charles M. Schulz, and has been going strong since 1969.

I always consider an outing here a holiday tradition, especially since I grew up watching A Charlie Brown Christmas every year, and attended a few holiday ice shows here over the years, too. It was always a treat to see Charles Schulz himself sitting in the audience, enjoying the show and chatting with visitors. 

10 Fun Outing Ideas for Winter Break

December 18, 2016

Tubing in Tahoe

Winter Break is almost here! While you'll probably spend plenty of time with family and friends for Christmas, you'll also need to keep the little ones occupied, and there are plenty of fun things to do in and around Marin with the kids during their time off! Check out our list of 10 fun family activities and outings, both indoor and outdoor, for winter break.

Christmas in Marinwood: The Nisja Bear's House

December 13, 2016

the Nisja's Bear's House in Marinwood

Marin is home to many communities that really go above and beyond the call of duty when getting into the holiday spirit, and of all the places in the county I think Marinwood, the neighborhood sandwiched between Novato and San Rafael, has the most decorated holiday houses per capita!

Just in Time for the Holidays: Best Kids' Books of 2016 from Diesel

December 8, 2016

A Most Magical GirlThe holidays are here, and great books always make fantastic gifts for kids! Clare Doornbos, the children's book expert at Diesel bookstore in Larkspur, saves us all a lot of time and stress by highlighting her picks for best kids' books of 2016.

You can join Clare for storytime at the bookstore every Thursday morning at 10:30 am, where she reads classics, new kids' books, and hidden treasures. It's perfect for families with children 5 and under. Diesel is located in Marin Country Mart at 2419 Larkspur Landing Circle in Larkspur. For more information about Diesel and a complete schedule of events, visit www.dieselbookstore.com/larkspur or call the store at (415) 785-8177.

Younger Picture Books (ages 0–4)

Touch Think Learn ABC by Xavier Deneux
A modern graphical alphabet book with luxurious thick board pages. What makes this book so extraordinary are the cut-outs from one page which correspond with a raised part of the facing page. It's almost like a pop-up book for the very young.

Help Feed the World's Largest Turkey at Town Center Corte Madera

November 1, 2016

Giant Turkey Town Center Corte Madera

This holiday season, Town Center Corte Madera proudly welcomes back the World’s Largest Turkey, who will gratefully collect your donations of canned food, non-perishable items, and toiletries. Donations will be distributed by the SF-Marin Food Bank to Marin families in need this holiday season. This year marks the Giant Turkey’s 25th annual appearance at Town Center—this year the Turkey will be “roosting” in the Center Court under the clock tower across from Blue Barn.

The Giant Turkey delights Marin families every holiday season with its bobbing head and hatch for donations. Over the years, the turkey has collected 33,100 pounds of donations!  These donations will help the Food Bank fill holiday baskets with useful items for those in need. Visiting the Giant Turkey has become a holiday tradition for families who find it a wonderful way to support their community with donations for Marin County residents who need assistance.

Fun Mid-Winter Break Camps in Marin and Beyond

February 9, 2016

studio 4 artLooking for something fun for the kids to do over the upcoming midwinter break? Check out some of the great day camp programs here in Marin. Many of these camps offer drop-in sessions for last-minute fun over the break, as well as before- and after-care.

  • Studio 4 Art
    1133 Grant Avenue
    Novato

    (415) 596-5546
    Camp takes place from February 15–19 from camp times 9 am–noon (ages 4–14) or 9 am–3 pm (ages 7–14). Campers will have the choice of many different projects each day that include painting, drawing, ceramics, mixed media and printmaking, students will create a variety of fine art projects in different art mediums. A sibling discount is offered. Cost: $265. For more info, visit their website.
  • Rolling Hills Club
    351 San Andreas Drive

    Novato
    (415) 897-2185

    The Junior Polar Bear Camp (ages 3–5) takes place February 16 and 18 from 9 am–1 pm, and Polar Beach Camp (ages 6–12) takes place February 15–19 from 9 am-4 pm. This year's theme is "Random Acts of Kindness". Activities include: stories, sensory crafts, and games. Prices start at $60/day. For more info, visit their website.

A Family Tradition Full of Love and Thought... But No Cost

December 22, 2015

Buoncristiani christmas tree with letters Marin Mommies presents a guest article from Marin mom and photographer Danielle Buoncristiani, who shares her family's tradition of holiday letter writing. Danielle specializes in photos of families and children. Learn more about her and her photography studio, Buoncristiani Photography, at www.buonphoto.com.

16 years ago when we were soon to be celebrating the holiday season with our newborn son we wanted to start our own family tradition. A tradition that could be done every year and that would cost nothing but thought and love.

The tradition of holiday letter writing began. Both my husband and I wrote a letter to our 9 month old son; we told him his first words, we talked about how he changed our lives, and he heard stories of what had occurred during these months that he came into our lives. My husband and I also wrote to each other. Life gets so crazy busy that often we don’t tell the people we love what makes them so special to us, tell them why we are so proud of them, and talk about some goals for the upcoming year.

The Gift that Keeps on Giving

December 15, 2015

Tanya SteinhoferMarin Mommies presents a guest article by Marin mom and financial planner Tanya Steinhofer, CFA,CFP®.

With the holidays upon us, my thoughts have turned to gift giving. My kids are already preparing their lists for Santa. While it can be tempting to fulfill their every request, have you ever noticed how quickly they become bored with the toys and games you buy them? How about giving them a gift with longer-term benefits? Here are a couple of ideas:

  1. Fund a 529. You could allocate a portion of your gift budget for your kids to a 529 plan for college. You can even get grandparents and other close family members involved. Some 529s even offer a gift link that you can email out to family members to make their contribution easy. 529 contributions grow tax-deferred and distributions are not taxed if used to pay for qualified education expenses. Paying for college is a great way to give your child a gift they’ll remember long after they’ve broken the plastic toy from China you gave them when they were young.

Lights, Camera, Santa! in Downtown Novato

December 11, 2015

Lights, Camera, Santa!This holiday season, visit the Novato Theater for Lights, Camera, Santa!, featuring photos with St. Nick himself! Santa will be on hand at the theater every Saturday until Christmas (December 12 and 19) from 11 am to 3 pm for holiday photos against the coolest Santa photo backdrop in Marin County.

In addition to photo ops with Santa, there will be holiday music, entertainment by your favorite princesses, and snacks. Photos cost $5 or two for $8. All proceeds support the ongoing restoration of the Novato Theater. For more information, visit the Downtown Novato Business Association website.

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