Stellar Neller's Passport
 

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Member since:
28 January 2012

Icon_superoo_orangeSuperoo '12, '13, '14

Icon_pictureBeen to 154 Attractions
Icon_star154 Reviews
Icon_star159 First to Review
Icon_camera2333 Photos
Icon_thumbsup93 Helpful Votes
Compliments
About Me & My Family

My verb is "to document." I have fabulous friends...my girl friends have kept me sane and laughing. I was a reckless traveller through my 20's but I sure had fun. I haven't left the country since I got married 10 years ago but I'm working on it. I have a 7 year old daughter who I've promised to take to Paris when she turns 16 and we talk about it all the time. My son is 4 and I havent decided where to take him when he turns 16. My husband has the best dry wit and we are a military family.
Our Family's Travel Personality
adventurous, curious, relaxed, energetic, spontaneous, easy_going, artsy, social_butterfly
We Just Got Back From
The Oregon Coast
Our Favorite Vacation Spot
Kailua, Hawaii
A Place We'd Love To Visit
Israel
Favorite Vacation Memory
Hiking as a family up Diamond Head two years ago is one of my many favorite memories. I had my 2 1/2 year old on my back, my 5 1/2 year old doing it on her own in her ruby slippers and my non-hiking husband along with us. When we reached the top, we overlooked Waikiki and shared a moment of excitement and pride that we all did it together.
Worst Travel Moment With My Kids:
When my daughter was 4, we spent a week on the Panhandle coast of Florida at a white sand beach. One afternoon as we were exploring, my daughter thought she was picking up a beautiful blue ribbon but instead was stung by the tail of a man of war. We had her soak her hand in warm salt water and there were a few tears, but she was a trooper and today she loves to tell everyone that she was stung by a jelly fish.
Websites I Like:
sortacrunchy pinterest soulemama sfgirlbybay

Reviews & Photos

154 Reviews


November 15 2014
0 families found this helpful
Adventure to Santa | kids travel, kids activities
Adventure to Santa
12505 North Mainstreet,
Rancho Cucamonga,
California 91739
"New Twist on Santa"
Every year it is a Christmas tradition to have the kid's pictures taken with Santa. Most often, the photo happens at Victoria Gardens in Rancho Cucamonga so that I can combine some Christmas shopping with the photo op. This year, Dream Works has spun a new twist on seeing Santa and my kids loved it. From November 15th to December 24th (2014), DreamWorks DreamPlace has created an animated experience to find Santa.
Located in the Chaffey Town Square (where the dancing fountains usually are), our experience began entering Santa's domain, but discovering Santa was missing. Shrek appeared on the screen and let us know we would have to help him to find Santa. Our Dream Guide led us into a room to create our own sled on a tablet. Once our sled was designed, we were brought into another room that contained a large, plush Santa sled, that we promptly entered and began our ride to Santa. The sled stays still (except for some minor rocking), but the screen brings the rider down a track and up, up into the air, along with Shrek and his friends. Wind blew our hair and there wasn't anything scary throughout the presentation (except of course, if your kid just doesn't like ogres).

We stepped off the sled and entered a room where the kids could play elfish games on more tablets as we waited for our turn to see Santa. The backdrop is a beautiful red library, tastefully decorated and the Santa is our favorite. He's been the mainstay Santa at VG for years. Super friendly and could pull an answer out of my introverted 6-year-old and my "too cool for school" 10-year-old. Our photos turned out great; another year of my favorite tradition checked off the list.
The greatest part? The Adventure to Santa is FREE! Reservations required and can be done so here http://www.victoriagardensie.com/info/santa2014. There is a chance to purchase photos with Santa afterwards. This is a great way to change up the unbearable "wait in line for Santa." The biggest proof? My tweener asked to do it again!

Disclosure: I was an invited guest of A2Santa. All opinions are my own.
 
kids travel, kids activities
kids travel, kids activities
kids travel, kids activities
kids travel, kids activities
kids travel, kids activities
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November 05 2014
1 family found this helpful
Snooze | kids travel, kids activities
Snooze
3435 Del Mar Heights Rd., Suite D3,
San Diego,
California 92130
"Puts the hip in hipster"
When I asked the front desk at Hotel Indigo where to go for breakfast in Del Mar, she quickly responded that Snooze is the MUST breakfast place to go to. I didn't necessarily want to go inland as I was at the beach and wanted to stay at the beach. But her enthusiasm for this place got me curious and Im glad I drove East.
This place is super cool. From the decor which is a retro, kid-friendly rat pack style, complete with circular booths and garage door style walls, along with morning alcohol selections, such as a Brewmosa, Snooze screams on trend. But I don't trust anything too hip, so the food would have to prove itself. And boy did it.
I usually go savory but I couldn't pass on trying the Brioche french toast stuffed with marscapone cheese and covered with salted caramel sauce. Divine. The kids menu included a drink, side of fruit, side of hash browns, and then a main choice. Mine chose the chocolate chip pancakes and were pretty impressed. The kids menu was also cool as they were educational without being too pushy and I even learned some facts from it.
This place was hopping even on a Monday morning, so to appease the crowds, there are board games scattered throughout the restaurant and coffee for those waiting. When I was ready to go, the waitress asked if I would like more coffee, after I paused, she offered it in a TO-Go cup! Can you believe it?! That won me over right there.
This place was definitely worth leaving the beach for and a must eat if in the area.
 
kids travel, kids activities
kids travel, kids activities
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November 05 2014
1 family found this helpful
Americana Restaurant | kids travel, kids activities
Americana Restaurant
1454 Camino del Mar,
Del Mar,
California 92014
"Kids kept asking to go back!"
Americana is a new restaurant in the cozy town of Del Mar that had my kids begging to go back to after our first breakfast there. It was the morning of daylight savings, so while everyone else was sleeping, we were ready to eat. (Yay! They open at 7am!) My kids don't eat eggs (ugh), so I always find it hard to order breakfast for them that isn't straight sugar. But Americana worked with me so nicely. Im sometimes like Meg Ryan in "When Harry Met Sally" because I ask for so many changes on a menu, but my waitress was NOT annoyed and was so accommodating. My daughter asked for them to put chocolate chips in her pancakes (they did), and my son asked for my potatoes on his own plate (they dd that too). The juices are from Evolution (my favorite juice brand), and the coffee, oh the coffee, is wonderful, and served in a European sized cup, and topped off regularly. We sat outside, and could hear the waves crash (though not an ocean view), and let the morning sun wake us up slowly.
My meal was balsamic-drenched portabellas with goat cheese omelet. Hello! The owner/chef came and checked up on us and talked us up for awhile. I LOVE that!
Im so glad Americana has opened because I see it as the place we have to go back to each time we return to the sea.
 
kids travel, kids activities
kids travel, kids activities
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November 05 2014
1 family found this helpful
Torrey Pines State Beach and Reserve | kids travel, kids activities
Torrey Pines State Beach and Reserve
12500 North Torrey Pines Road,
San Diego,
California 92037
"Hiking + Ocean = Love"
Torrey Pines has been on my hiking bucket list for quite some time now. So when I finally got the chance to explore it while having a getaway in Del Mar, I was thrilled, but quickly found myself making some amateur mistakes. Learn from me so you don't do what I did...
What NOT to do:
-Our hike began after the rains on a cloudy morning, but by the time we made it up to the reserve, it was full on sunny and I did not bring a hat, nor sunscreen. There is NO shade here people, bring a hat!
-Perhaps I was thinking it was November and there wouldn't be many tourists, but boy wasI wrong. I think all of Western Europe was there climbing with me, so next time, although I love the United Nations, I would NOT go on a weekend.
-Trying to avoid the $15 parking fee, I parked outside of the Torrey Pines state beach. Well low, and behold, the state beach isn't where the reserve starts, so we had to walk the beach and then walk some more once we got to the reserve. That added a couple more miles to my kids already long hiking day. Trust me, pay the darn parking fee.
-I was told by a "helpful" local to start at the bottom, walk the beach, then at flat rock, climb up the stairs to begin hiking. Problem with this is that I was going against the flow the WHOLE time. People, I found, don't move over to the right for those coming up the path. That was a pain. I should have walked the road up, hiked around the reserve, and then hiked down to the beach. I know for next time.
-There is NO food to be brought in and no trash cans in the reserve. I thought it was a pack it in/pack it out, so I gave my kids a little Halloween candy to help them continue on the path, and you would have thought I had stolen the hope diamond. Please learn from me, do not bring candy (or any other wrappers) to Torrey Pines.

But there was so much good, and what a great experience despite my rookie mistakes. The VIEWS! They stretch and stretch and the sea is simply magical, and stunning, and everything else I though it would be. The drought has affected the area and it looks dry but it still has maintained its beauty.

Be sure to stop in the Torrey Pines Lodge/Rangers Station. The docents there are delightful and I was even told one of them finds some of the taxidermy animals on her daily run around the reserve. Although you can't touch those guys, they d have a "Please touch" section of rocks, bones, etc to help with being hands-on with nature.

Torrey Pines wasn't just a check off the bucket list, Torrey Pines was an experience.
 
kids travel, kids activities
kids travel, kids activities
kids travel, kids activities
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November 05 2014
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Dog Beach Del Mar | kids travel, kids activities
Dog Beach Del Mar
3006 Sandy Lane,
Del Mar,
California
"Dog Lovers Paradise"
We stumbled upon this beach at high tide so the river going out to the ocean was full and strong. That also meant we couldn't turn the corner and go north to the caves. So instead of paying the $3 to park and not see a whole lot, we crossed the bridge going southbound and parked in the residential street to avoid paying. This brought us to the other side of the river and there were still dogs to pet and make friends with. From our view of where we had just come from, the beach was covered with man's best friend, here on our side, we had a few that could stretch their legs and enjoy some beach freedom. We don't have a dog, so its nice when people let us spend a little time with theirs. People were friendly and chill and my kids enjoyed exploring under the bridge and climbing the rocks that are used as a sea barrier to the houses. This park was worth a stop but Id definitely check the tides next time.
 
kids travel, kids activities
kids travel, kids activities
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