exotica rare fruit nursery in vista

exotica nursery exotica nursery exotica nursery exotica nursery exotica nursery exotica nursery One of our favorite places to go find rare fruit trees is Exotica Nursery in Vista, California. This place is a little gem filled with many varieties of exotic fruits. It is even featured in the documentary The Fruit Hunters. We had already been to this nursery prior to watching the film, so when we saw it pop up on screen, we were all, “Hey! Exotica! We’ve been there!” Ben’s really been getting into growing rare fruits (you probably know that already), and even though our backyard already holds about 60 fruit trees, I don’t think he’s slowing down just yet. This particular visit we came home with 2 guava trees, one was a Allahabadi variety, and the other was a diamond guava. The prices there are fairly good, but of course, depending the type of exotic fruit tree you are looking for, it can get more costly.

One of the things we look forward to when visiting Exotica is the tasting table they have ready for visitors to try. This visit we were all able to try mulberry for the first time, and we loved it so much that Ben is now planning to get a mulberry tree at some point. It’s a drought tolerant tree, so we definitely want to get that one in our garden.



the marvel universe live report from brave

marvel universe live marvel universe live marvel universe live marvel universe live marvel universe live marvel universe live marvel universe live marvel universe live marvel universe live marvel universe live marvel universe live marvel universe live When we were going to Marvel Universe Live I thought we were going to a nursery in L.A. because my mommy said that we might go to a nursery in L.A. But we did not! I was so surprised! They were tricking us that it was a tree festival. It did not look like it. It looked like a movie theater. It was pretty crowded. Someone was dressed like Darth Vader and some people were wearing Spider-Man clothes like my sisters and I!

During the show, it was funny when Captain America was helping an old woman walk across the street! The show was pretty cool. No, it was cool and awesome!! One of my favorite parts was when Spider-Man swung over us and my mommy was asking me who some of the characters were.

I knew who some of the characters were, but not all of them. I like shows so when I saw the stage it kind of got me excited! The guy who was being Spider-Man in the show sounded like Spider-Man in the Ultimate Spider-Man on Netflix! They came up with a pretty good plan! Loki is a bad and sneaky little brother!

And in the night when all the people at the Marvel Universe place were leaving I think people were honking their cars with their keys so they could find their car easier in the night. It was kind of dark so we could not really see which was our car! It was so fun and we had a good time.

(P.S. Their acting and costumes were good! As my sister True and my Papi said, the Green Goblin looked like he was wearing pajamas!)

***The portion above was completely written by Brave. We had to correct some spelling errors, but the content is all her! I thought it would be fun if she wrote her perspective on the whole show!***

Marvel Universe Live at The Forum runs until Sunday, May 3. To check if they’re coming to a city near you, check out Marvel Universe Live for more info, or here on Ticketmaster.

This post is in partnership with Feld Entertainment as a Feld Family Ambassador; complimentary tickets for the show were provided. I’m always so thankful opportunities such as this (my girls are especially thankful), and also for the time you take to support me and this space.



popbar at the anaheim packing house

pop bar pop bar pop bar pop bar pop bar pop bar > pop bar We had too much fun indulging in lots of cold sweets over spring break. Forget the beach, we hit up all the local ice cream places. HA! Well, we do love the beach, but not SoCal traffic, so I rarely make it out there. Anyway, one of the places we had so much fun trying was the Popbar at the Anaheim Packing House. It was our first time there, and we met my BFF there for lunch (it was her first time too). We had some delicious Vietnamese food, and of course, ice cream for dessert.

Popbar is gelato ice cream on a stick, so it’s much creamier than your regular popsicle. I got the hazelnut bar, half dipped with milk chocolate and waffle cone. The other girls picked their own… True got strawberry sorbet dipped in milk chocolate, Soul got vanilla dipped in milk chocolate and waffle cone, Brave got a berry sorbetto dipped in white chocolate and waffle cone, and Glow wanted chocolate everything. After I had finished my bar, I declared that I could totally go for another, so since Linda wanted to try the pistachio, she went back to order that, and we shared (my BFF is the best!). I loved every bite of my popbar, and next time I want to try the peanut butter one.

Popbars aren’t easy to split in half, so each girl got her own. When you have to multiply everything by four, things just cost more (about $25 for 5 popbars). It was spring break though, so we went wild and everyone got one. It’s kind of pricey that way, but it was totally worth it to let everyone enjoy their popbars in peace. #illalwayssayyestoicecream



star wars at legoland

star wars at legoland star wars at legoland star wars at legoland star wars at legoland star wars at legoland star wars at legoland star wars at legoland star wars at legoland star wars at legoland star wars at legoland star wars at legoland The girls and I had an adventure a few weeks ago and went to Legoland to check out the unveiling of the Death Star in their Star Wars Miniland. It was a busy week, so I didn’t decide until last minute to go, so I made it a surprise for the girls. They had no clue where we were trekking off to! It was such a lovely day too! There was pretty much no one at the amusement park, we didn’t have to wait in any lines, and it was great to just be out of the house. Our days are full of to-do lists and making sure all their lessons get done, that it was nice to just chill out and have fun.

Up to this point, the girls were only fans of Clone Wars the cartoon, but have never watched Star Wars. Ben and I have tried to coax them to watching it with us, but they said it looks scary, so they always said no. Well, after this little visit, it excited them about Star Wars, and they told us they were ready to finally watch the movies. We started with Episode I last weekend, and finished up Episode II: Attack of the Clones this past weekend. They are so anxious about how it all plays out because they are so baffled at how Anikin becomes Darth Vader. We tell them “Just wait, you’ll see.” The movie also brings about good conversations about what can happen when you just follow your own desires, without disregard to others; it really can lead down a dark path in real life too.

The girls had so much fun at the event. They were excited to make their own starships and see R2-D2 roaming around. Brave was the only one Brave enough to go up to him. Of course, they got a little nervous when Darth Vader and the Storm Troopers came out, but they forgot about them once the Death Star was unveiled. It is an impressive work of Lego art. It spans 8 ft. wide, 13 ft. hight and weighs more than 1900 pounds! We also learned that there are Master Builders that have the job of putting these Lego works of art together. It sounded like a fun job to all of us!
I have a feeling you will start seeing more Star Wars inspired projects in this space. Glow is already requesting to be Yoda for Halloween. She is always giggling anytime we watch his scenes in the movie. It’s so freakin’ cute! Are you or your kids Star Wars geeks? I have fond memories of watching it with my parents when I was little, so it’s special to be able to do that now with my own girls.

salton sea

salton sea salton sea salton sea salton sea salton sea salton sea salton sea salton sea Ever since I watched a documentary on Netflix about the Salton Sea last year, I’ve been itching to go. Luckily, we pass it on the way to Salvation Mountain, so we made a quick stop there after we did our scavenger hunt. It’s such an interesting place… the smell, the feel of the ground, and just the sight of it. It’s breathtaking, but its vastness is so out of place in the middle of the desert. And I suppose that makes sense, considering it was manmade.

There were so many birds there and True and Brave took off running toward a whole lot of them sitting by the shore to get them flying. Glow didn’t like walking on the rocky, shell-like sand, so I carried her to the shore. On the way back to the car, I told her she needed to walk, but she didn’t want to, so Brave picked her up to carry her the rest of the way. It was so cute! Brave’s such a sweetheart. All the girls are, but Brave has an extra sensitive soul.

If you plan to go to Salvation Mountain, you must stop by Salton Sea (or vice-versa), and then on your way back towards Los Angeles, grab some date shakes at Shields Date Garden. If you have extra time, grab dinner at Native Foods Cafe in Palm Springs and stop by the Ace Hotel to use their photo booth. The photo strip will be a fun souvenir to remember that day. Since we made our trip on Valentine’s Day, after our date shake we picked up sushi and headed home. We still had some surprises to give each other and the kids, so we ran out of time, preventing both Native Foods Cafe and Ace Hotel photo booth stops.



if you ask me if i want ice cream, i’ll always say yes

winter gardening 2015 winter gardening 2015 winter gardening 2015 winter gardening 2015 winter gardening 2015 winter gardening 2015 I told Ben he could buy himself a tree for Valentine’s Day. Really though, he would have bought it anyway, silly holiday or not. Well, he wanted a Wax Jambu (water apple), and he found a seller out in Orange County, so we had to make a trip out there to pick it up. By the way, this fruit was one of the many we tried when we were in Singapore, and we loved it so much, we wanted to grow it.

Back to the story… This is on a Sunday afternoon, and usually, we don’t really do much except go to church and finish other house things at home on Sundays, but when the gentleman who had the tree called to confirm he had it, we all quickly loaded in the car and left. This was as spontaneous as we get! Of course, Ben knew that Snow Monster (we first tried it on my birthday) was really close by, so he said earlier in the day, “Wanna go pick up my tree and get ice cream?” Of course, I said yes. I’ll always say yes to ice cream.

We picked up his tree and then we got ice cream. The girls were very happy to get a large taro and mango shaved ice, and I was especially delighted to get a pistachio macaron and Thai tea ice cream all to myself. We all came home quite elated with our Sunday evening adventure.




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