A Trip to the LA County Fair in the Chevy Traverse

In partnership with Chevy.

When you drive a 2008 minivan with over 220K miles on it, you get really excited to test drive a brand new 2020 Chevy Traverse with all the bells and whistles for a week. Chevy sent one over for our family to test drive, so the whole family piled in the Traverse and headed to the LA County Fair this past month. And wow…we REALLY loved it. The Traverse AND the Fair!

I’ve been missing out on a lot of new car features driving an older car. Features that I never knew I needed or wanted. But the features in this Chevy Traverse were so great that I can’t wait to purchase a new car very soon. I’ve been waiting for just the right one…not sure if I wanted another minivan, or something larger such as a suburban, or if I could even entertain the idea of getting something a bit smaller, like the Chevy Traverse.

With a family of 6, I thought I was stuck with a minivan. But after driving the Chevy Traverse, I fell in love with it. Surprisingly, the kids said it was just as roomy and much better than our van! So here we are, seriously considering a Chevy Traverse.

Anyways, our trip to the LA County Fair was just perfect. What I love about the LA County Fair is that is takes place at the Pomona Fairplex which is enormous. The fair is nice and spread out, so it doesn’t get super crowded, and there are lots of areas to enjoy and explore.

Things to do at the LA County Fair

The LA County Fair has everything you would expect from a county fair. Food, rides, entertainment, animals, vendors, and really fun exhibits. We really enjoyed the Pop-up photo area with the giant food. There were so many fun photo opportunities. Are these great?!!!

If you like to pet and feed animals, then the barn area is the perfect place to. There are dozens of goats and sheep waiting to be pet and fed. The kids were a little scared, but once they got rid of the goat food, the animals settled down. LOL.

Of course we had to stop by the Chevy booth. My boys LOVE cars, so they really wanted to check out the Chevy Corvette. And since we are currently actively shopping for the right car for our family, we wanted to see what else we might like.

A fair wouldn’t be a fair without lots of fair food. We decided that we wanted donuts, and tried the giant Unicorn and Samoa Donuts. Little miss Dani didn’t want to share. Yum yum.

Finally, it was time to ride some rides and play some games. There are so many rides to choose from. Here are just a few photos of the hundreds I took. So hard to pick just a few.

And that was just a little sample of photos from our visit to the LA County Fair. It really was one of those perfect days. Good times, good kids, good food and a great car to get us there.

What We loved about the Chevy Traverse.

The Chevy Traverse is a Mid-sized SUV with three rows. We really like the captain seat option for our family because they could easily get into the back row. You can also get the Chevy Traverse with bench seats instead. The Smart Slide® Seating feature offers easy and convenient access to the third-row seats as well.

When it comes to your safety, Traverse goes above and beyond. This smart midsize SUV offers a wide range of active safety features that utilize cameras, sensors and radar to help you look out for potential dangers on the road. There are standard rear vision cameras, available forward collision alert, and available front pedestrian breaking. My favorite was the available heated and ventilated front seats. Perfect for hot days in Orange County.

You can close the trunk and adjust the back seats with the press of a button. A hands-free power liftgate with a simple kicking motion over the emblem projection under the rear bumper is also available. Something that I don’t have with my current minivan.

The only thing smaller about the Chevy Traverse compared to my minivan was the trunk space. However, considering the Traverse is an SUV, it has plenty of room for STUFF. Check out our trip to Costco. Everything fit in with no problem with still more room left. Plus you can keep your things concealed in the available storage space behind the infotainment screen or in the rear underfloor compartment.

Check out what is looks like from above. Almost like a minivan…but it’s an SUV.

Thanks Chevy for sending us to the LA County Fair and letting us borrow a Chevy Traverse for a week. We loved it and the kids and I didn’t want to send it back! Now, that I shared our experience with the Chevy Traverse with you, head over to the Chevy website to check out all the info and see if you think the Chevy Traverse is a good fit for your family. There are so many features that I didn’t even get to all of them!

How to Make a Ghost Town Ghoul Costume for Knott’s Spooky Farm

This year for Knott’s Spooky Farm we decided that we really wanted to make our visits extra fun. Last year we dressed up as the Peanuts Gang and had a blast, especially trick-or-treating and entering the costume contest. So this year we thought dressing up as the Ghost Town Ghouls would be even more fun.

Oh. My. Goodness. Did we have the best time ever! Whoever said that Knott’s was not magical is wrong. We had the most magical time at Knott’s Spooky Farm. The kids got some special moments with the Ghost Town Ghouls and had an overall fun time trick or treating, playing games, and going to the shows. We ended the day with the Halloween Costume Contest in Camp Snoopy.

A lot of people asked me how I made the kids their Ghost Town Ghouls costumes. I can’t tell you how many times people stopped to tell up they liked our costumes. So I thought I’d put this post together to explain how you can make one too. It’s actually pretty simple. In an hour our two, you can make one or more!

The Ghost Town Ghouls wear costumes in mostly grayscale. Black, whites and greys are the colors you need to work with. I recommend first going through your house and looking for pieces of clothing that will work in these colors. You then can work your costume around those pieces. I actually sewed daughter’s costume. It’s a simple peasant top pattern in a grey calico, a dark grey belt, and a black circle skirt. If you can sew, then I recommend sewing one if you want it to be exactly what you are looking for. But you can just as well buy stuff to make one.

Here are photos of the Ghost Town Ghouls for inspiration.

Now that you have seen some of Knott’s Ghost Town Ghouls, let me show you what I came up with. I mostly used things I had at home already, and then added accessories.

For the boys, I had one Cowboy Ghoul, and one Ghost Town Townsperson Ghoul. Here are their costumes.

For the boys, I had them wear black pants and white shirts they already owned. We added a grey jacket to the cowboy costume and a vest and cape to the townsperson. I found the child sized cowboy hat and Derby hat at Party City. I used 5/8″ ribbon for the bow ties, and the plastic chain I also got at Party City.

Here are some items I found online that you could use for inspiration to make your own Ghost Town Ghoul costume.

Derby Hat, Train Conductor Hat, Black Top Hat, Black or White Bandanas, Black Dickies Overalls, Black Pants, Black or Grey Dressy Vest, White Dress, Shirt, Black Cape, Bowtie and Suspenders, Black Boots, Black Cowboy Hat, and black ribbon.

For my daughter, I made her costume as I mentioned before. Here she is holding one of the Ghost Town Ghoul’s parasols. You could add one to your costume if you’d like. I got her mini top hat at Walmart, and I pinned a black ribbon to her shirt.

Here are some options I found online that you could use to make your own Ghost Town Ghoul girls costume. There are also witches in Ghost Town, so you could also go that route.

Spider Veil Witch Hat, Mini Black Top Hats, Tulle Pettiskirt, Long Black Dress, Black and White Checkered Dress, White or Grey Ruffle Blouse, Spiderweb Cape, Witch Costume, Black Bonnet, Grey Pilgrim Dress, Black Corset Belt.

Once you have your costume pieces together, you will need some of the following to decorate them and make them truly Ghoulish. The main thing you will need is cheese cloth. This is what makes those cool spiderwebs that you see all over the Ghost Town Ghouls.

You can buy cheesecloth online or at the fabric store. Just ask where to find it once you get to the store. You will then cut pieces of it, and then cut holes into those pieces. Then rough them up and make them look like spiderwebs.

Once the pieces of cheese cloth look like spider webs, you can sew them onto your costumes. You can also glue them on, but I didn’t want to ruin my kids clothes. If you sew them on, you can unstitch them when you are finished for Halloween. Make sure to add spiderwebs to the hats and skirts as wee=ll.

Here are some options I found online that you could use to finish off your Ghost Town Ghoul costume.

Plastic Spiders Cotton Spider Web Cheese cloth Plastic Chains Costume Makeup Black Lipstick Black Roses

Ghost Town Ghouls have white faces and dark inset eyes. Use black makeup to darken in the shallows of your eyes, and white makeup to give that ghostly glow. Black lipstick is optional, but fun to add! The cottony stretchy spiderweb can be used to wrap around your head if you want to look like the school teacher, and you can add plastic spiderwebs to just about any part of your costume.

Wha la! You have a Ghost Town Ghoul costume.

I hope this post inspires you to attend Knott’s Spooky Farm and to dress up your kids! It doesn’t have to be a Ghost Town Ghoul, but I can tell you that we’ve never had more fun doing so. There is a Halloween Costume Contest during Spooky Farm, so if you do dress up, make sure to enter. It is at 3:15pm on each day in Csamp Snoopy at the Camp Snoopy Theater.

We had so much fun entering and actually won a prize!

Also, if you are heading to Knott’s any time soon, you will want to read this post. 101 Tip for Visiting Knott’s Berry Farm. These are my best tips and tricks for visiting the park. You are sure to find something useful!

Best Tips for Visiting Knott's Berry Farm

Family Fun at Knott’s Spooky Farm

Knott’s Spooky Farm has always been a favorite of our family. Not to be confused with Scary Farm, Spooky Farm isn’t scary at al,  and is geared towards kids ages 4-12. Dressing up in costumes, going trick-or-treating, and enjoying the Farm all decorated for Halloween is so much fun. It’s always #1 on our family’s Fall bucket list…because of course, we LOVE Knott’s, and two…the whole family can enjoy it. If you have never been to Knott’s Spooky Farm, this year is the time to go. It’s happening now at Knott’s Berry Farm on weekends during the month of October and on Halloween. It’s even better than last year, with even more to do. Best of all, its included in the cost of admission.

Insider Tips for Knott’s Spooky Farm

Let me share all the fun you can enjoy at Spooky Farm, along with some insider tips to make the day more fun. First of all, I recommend going on Sunday if you want it to be a little less crowded. It most likely will be a bit crowded during Spooky Farm, but if you aren’t planning on doing a full day of rides, the Spooky Farm activities aren’t busy at all.

Make sure to pick up a map on your way into the park, so you know what happening at Spooky Farm, and where are the Halloween Stations are. There are trick-or-treat stations, fun shows, Halloween activities and more marked on the map.

This year, the kids wanted to dress up in a PEANUTS gang theme for Spooky Farm. And just so you know, anyone can dress up at Knott’s. Their costumes were pretty easy to make…except for Woodstock, which I made from a sewing pattern many years ago. But if you really wanted to dress up like Woodstock, you could get a yellow shirt and a yellow hat online, and glue some yellow feathers to them. a pair of black legging and shoes, and you will be all set to go as Woodstock.

For Charlie Brown, we purchased a Charlie Brown shirt at the Knott’s souvenir shop, and paired with shorts, socks and shoes. For Linus, I got a simple red t-shirt and drew lines across it with a black felt tip marker. Then we paired it with Linus’s signature blanket and black shorts.

For Snoopy, I glued a large black spot to the back of a white t-shirt, then colored in the color with a red felt tip marker. for the tail, I cut two tail shaped pieces of white felt, and sewed them together on two sides. Then I stuffed them with stuffing and had sewed to the shirt. A pair of baseball pants finished off the outfit. The large head was actually made for us when I had the Woodstock costume made, but we found it to be too much hassle at the park, so we purchased Snoop ears at the Knott’s Souvenir shop. They are so cute and can be worn all year round.

Now that I’ve shown you our costumes, it’s time to go Trick-Or-Treating. During Spooky Farm kids can go trick or treating through the streets of Knott’s. This is the first year that Dani is able to walk and trick-or-treat on her own, so it was fun for the whole family to help her through the park.

The Ghost Town monsters pass out the candy to the kids all day long. And don’t worry about bringing your own trick-or-treat bucket because Knott’s will give the kids treat bags when they enter the park. The less stuff you have to bring the better.

If you put in the work to wear a costume, then you must enter The Peanuts Costume Contest. This fun costume contest is held at the Camp Snoopy Theatre. And for an insider tip, the more creative you are with your costume, the better chance you will have to win. And let me tell you, the host of the costume contest is pretty funny. He tells great jokes to entertain the parents!

Snoopy, Lucy and Charlie Brown all pick their favorite costumes, so you have three chances to win. Everyone who wants to enter, lines up and gets their chance on stage. Don’t be late to the contest or you’ll miss your chance to enter.

Here is my gang up on the stage dressed up as the Peanuts Gang. Although we didn’t win, it was so much fun.

Did you know that you can visit Snoopy and the rest of the Peanuts gang dress up for Halloween? There is a meet and greet area located by Snoopy’s Red Baron airplanes. The best time to go is right after one of the Camp Snoopy Shows. After the shows, they usually escort some of the characters out. So jump in line and be the first to get your photo taken.

If you want some hands on fun, make a visit the Creepy Critters of Calico. Inside the Livery Stable in Ghost Town the are a bunch creepy little critters such as bugs, spiders, beetles and turtles. Make sure to say hi to the skeleton horse as you walk in.

You can even touch a giant boa constrictor. No thank you!

Have you ever seen a lizard with a hat?

There is even a rat town where you even pet and play with them.

This year, they have Spooky Storytelling shows at the Birdcage Theater in Ghost Town. It’s fun because the audience gets to participate and the show is really funny. I recommend getting in line at least 15 minutes if more beforehand. Seating is limited and not everyone in line will fit inside the small theater.

You know me and fun treats. I am always on the hunt to find the most Instagramable treats in Orange County. Knott’s Berry Farm has plenty of Spooky Treats for Halloween. You will get the best selection at one of the Knott’s Bakeries that are located just outside the park, and inside the park next to Ghost Rider. There will be cookies, cupcakes, donuts, candy and more.

Our favorite are the Halloween donuts. You can even purchase them on your way into the park at the Knott’s Bakery Express located near the security lines.

Year round, Knott’s offers Snoopy Cookies, but during Halloween, you can get Snoopy Vampire Cookies. Oh so cute.

If you had over to Ghost Town, you can find special Halloween Churros at the Churro Factory, or get a Halloween treat at the Calico Candy Store.

I mentioned before, you don’t have to do rides to enjoy Spooky Farm. There are plenty of non-ride activities. In Calico Square, you can visit the Great Pumpkin Patch, and enjoy some down time coloring Halloween Snoopy pages. There is pumpkin decorating and cookie decorating as well!

Finally, make sure to check out some of the Halloween Entertainment at Knott’s Spooky Farm. There are family friendly shows happening all around the park. There is Spooky Story Time and the Calliope Cancert at the Bird Cage Theater.

The “Monsters Are Coming” Stage Show at happening Camp Snoopy Theatre, and the astonishing Magician at the Calico Saloon! These shows are great for all ages, and give you the perfect chance to rest your legs after trick-or-treating through the streets of Knott’s.

You also want to stop and get measured for you coffin! Well, not really, but its fun nonetheless.

As you can see, you can make an entire day enjoying the seasonal offerings of Knott’s Spooky Farm. It’s just one of the Seasons of Fun the Knott’s has during the year. You can enjoy them all by purchasing a Knott’s Season Pass…such a great deal if you want to check out Knott’s for Winter, Spring, Summer and Fall.

City of Hope is Coming to Orange County

The is a sponsored post.

Last weekend, I had the opportunity to attend the Susan G. Komen More Than Pink walk at Fashion Island in Newport Beach on behalf of the City of Hope. As expected, it was an amazingly inspiring event with lots of beautiful breast cancer survivors, their friends and family, and others who were there to support the walk.

I was happy to see City of Hope as a sponsor of the More Than Pink walk, and I had the privilege of checking out their booth and also taking to some of their staff and doctors.

City of Hope is coming to Orange County

Good news! The City of Hope is in the works of investing more than $1 billion dollars to develop a comprehensive cancer campus that will change cancer care in Orange County, California. The campus will be located on approximately 11 acres of land at FivePoint Gateway in Irvine will include an around 190,000-square-foot building that will be a center of innovative cancer research and treatments. It is expected to open in 2021 ahead of schedule.

The new City of Hope Orange County comprehensive cancer campus will be Orange County’s only specialty hospital dedicated solely to treating and curing cancer. It is expected to include:

  • An outpatient cancer center offering diagnostic imaging and screenings, precision medicine and early detection, medical oncology, chemotherapy, radiation therapy, surgical oncology and ambulatory surgery.
  • A clinical research center offering phase I-III clinical trials.
  • Personalized supportive care services that include palliative care physicians, psychiatrists, social workers and others who partner with patients and their families to address the many physical and emotional issues that can arise during and after treatment. City of Hope is the model for other institutions across the country.
  • Access to a wide range of solid tumor and blood cancer specialists dedicated to finding the best treatments for each patient.   

Why is City of Hope Expanding to Orange County?

Nearly 20% of residents leave the area for advanced care, with many heading to City of Hope’s main campus in Duarte, California. This can be as much as a two-hour commute away. In addition, despite its reputation for healthy living, Orange County is not immune from the one-in-three national statistic for cancer incidence. In fact, the cancer incidence rate in the county is projected to increase by 18% over the next decade. Cancer risk increases with age and the county’s population is aging faster than the U.S. average. 

The Orange County campus will be an extension of City of Hope in Duarte, providing access to highly specialized cancer experts and treatment for the most complex cases, such as bone marrow transplants, stem cell transplants and CAR T cell therapy. 

City of Hope Consultation Offices Open in Newport Beach

City of Hope’s expansion to Orange County has already started. It will include additional clinical locations that will provide medical oncology and infusion services ensuring easy access to care throughout the region.

City of Hope is planning to open its Newport Beach facility this January, providing residents with a more convenient way to receive leading-edge medicine. Offices in Newport Beach will be open for consultations and resources! Doctor Wade Smith, M.D. is very active in bringing his expertise in a variety of cancers to City of Hope and will be here in Orange County to help patients at these offices.

What a great morning learning about the new of City of Hope coming to Orange County, and also being in the company of so many amazing people supporting the Susan G. Komen More Than Pink walk. City of Hope and Susan G. Komen work closely together so this is a great partnership.

Before I left the walk that morning, I stopped by City of Hope’s renowned “Wishing Tree” installation. They brought it onsite to the More Than Pink walk for survivors and co-survivors to interact with during the event. IT was City of Hope’s way to introduce to Orange County that they will be creating a world class comprehensive cancer campus of the future right here in the OC. I know there are so many people who are so grateful for this new and will welcome with open arms the new City of Hope Orange County campus!

Why You Want to Go on an Apple Vacation!

This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Apple Vacations and Dreams Los Cabos Suites Golf Resort & Spa. All opinions are 100% mine.

Now that summer is officially over, I bet we’re all ready for a vacation! After all that back-to-school shopping, getting back into the school time routine and going to back-to-school nights, I could totally use one asap. My destination of choice includes white sand beaches and turquoise waters.

{Psst…make sure to read to the end of this post for a big giveaway!}

Have you ever heard of Apple Vacations? Apple Vacations is one of the nation’s largest and most respected vacation companies. They offer you piece of mind knowing that you will be taken care of during your vacation – from the transportation to the accommodations. Your Unlimited-Luxury® vacation with Dreams Resort & Spa through Apple Vacations always includes round-trip airfare, hotel accommodations, in-resort round-trip airport transfers, and the services of an in-resort Apple Representative.

While on any trip booked by Apple Vacations, a friendly and professional Apple Vacations Resort Representatives will be there for you. They have scheduled desk hours at most resorts and welcome briefings in all of their most popular destinations. Plus, they guarantee the best prices. Although they do work hard to try and make sure fares are the lowest around, if you do find a lower price from a competitor prior to booking, they’ll gladly match it will an Instant Price Match!

Doesn’t this sound like something we all need when booking a vacation?!!! I could have totally used that on our last vacation. With a family and a full itinerary, I would have welcomed all the help in getting the details worked out regarding transportation and the logistics of getting around our destination.

Now’s your chance to get rid of the end-of-summer blues and head to blue skies and sparkling water. You can enter to win an Unlimited-Luxury® Dream Escape with Apple Vacations!

Apple Vacations is hosting the Unlimited-Luxury® Dream Escape Sweepstakes, an amazing sweepstakes with a chance to win a five-night trip for 2 adults to Dreams Los Cabos Suites Golf Resort & Spa.

How to enter the Unlimited-Luxury® Dream Escape Sweepstakes

From September 17, 2019 through October 17, 2019, you can enter to win online. The vacation will be valued through December 1, 2020 and the winner must book by October 17, 2020.

About Dreams Los Cabos Suites Golf Resort & Spa

Dreams Los Cabos Suites Golf Resort & Spa is located on the sparkling Sea of Cortez within the luxurious Los Cabos corridor, 15 minutes from Cabo San Lucas and San Jose del Cabo. It is a AAA Four Diamond award-winning resort since 2011, and is surrounded by eight golf championship golf courses

While vacationing at this luxurious property in Los Cabos, you can enjoy whale watching, turtle release program, golfing, water sports, sandy beaches and so much more. All over-sized luxury suites feature ocean views and private furnished balconies. Dreams Los Cabos Suites Golf Resort & Spa also offers family suites and one-bedroom suites that can accommodate up to six people.

It makes a great family destination with a heated infinity pool with a waterslide and children’s area. When the adults need some tranquil relaxation, they can head over to the adults-only pool offering personalized concierge service or their world-class spa spanning nearly 3,000 square feet. It offers oceanfront palapas, couple’s treatment rooms and Pevonia® products. Kids can go to the fun and exciting Explorers Club. This fully supervised children’s program offers activities including climbing wall, playground, indoor game room and giant TV.

If you are part of the Preferred Club – perks include a newly-enhanced lounge, private beach area, and complimentary hydrotherapy access.

Just writing this post about the Dreams Los Cabos Suites Golf Resort & Spa makes me want to pack my bags right now and get on a plane. And after checking out all the other destination packages that Apple Vacations has to offer, it looks like there are a lot of amazing places a family could visit affordably. So head over to enter the Unlimited-Luxury® Dream Escape Sweepstakes and check out the other packages Apple Vacations has to offer. Where do you want to go?