Tag Archives: San Diego

So many choices…

I knew I hated making decisions from an early age. My parents have “fond” memories of me spending literally HOURS standing in the Barbie aisle of the local toy store (remember KB Toys in the mall??). I guess I was trying to pick the perfect Barbie (looking back they’re all perfect… That damn Barbie!). It was silly though because what I didn’t realize then was I’d be back in another week or so to get yet another one! But I did the same thing shoe shopping. I remember my older brother was tasked with taking me shoe shopping for an upcoming dance and I COULD NOT pick a pair of shoes to save my life. My brother had to threaten to leave without me after several hours inside a payless.

I mean, these decisions, even as a young child, gave me panic. I felt anxiety choosing a Barbie, what the hell is that! I guess it was a little personality quirk that would continue, even to this day, although now I don’t hesitate at Payless, I just buy all the shoes I like 😉

At this moment in my twentysomething life, I am faced with several choices, each of them scary on their own. Or the choice to do nothing, which is also scary. As many of you know, law school has always been a dream of mine, yet I cannot seem to get accepted into a school. I can always go back to Concord Law School… But then what? I think lately my reality about POST-law school has become quite jaded. Its a rough economy out there. And there are more law students then ever. The chances that I’d actually get a job doing what I want that makes enough money to pay off the enormous debt I’d be getting into is slim. Which I didn’t really care about before, but now that I have Sophie, I HAVE to think about her future. I can’t slum it & live off of mac n cheese anymore. I have to give Soph everything and that may mean giving up or delaying that dream.

However, recently another plan has popped into my head, using the skills I already possess. I’ve been seriously thinking about starting a side business doing contract work bookkeeping. I spoke with my professional mentor and he laid out a plan that is VERY easy to start. And his support of me is incredibe. I would be doing bookkeeping for small businesses using Quickbooks. I would also run payroll, file taxes (personal & business) and more like powerpoint presentations, social media marketing plans & set-up, create excel worksheets, financial statements, HR and employee tracking… Etc. I have a lot of skills that Domino’s has blessed me with that I would LOVE to develop into my own business. Its just again, a huge risk to take. The startup cost is significantly less than law school obviously, but I’d be opening myself up for huge failure & embarrassment if I couldn’t pull it off.

Or I coukd do nothing, continue to work at Domino’s and grow my position there. I’ve been treated so well here and there are growing opportunities for me. For instance, I have a chance to write & teach a section on the importance of social media marketing in sales building techniques for a training class that trains hundreds of managers. That’s pretty HUGE!

Decisions decisions….

The waiting game

I do realize it’s been awhile since I’ve posted anything. Anything interesting at least. It’s because my life hasn’t been interesting and I wouldn’t dare bore my lovely readers (all 3 of you) with boring pregnancy-related posts. That’s what my facebook page is for (sorry facebook friends!)

Right now my life is in a stage of waiting… and waiting… and waiting. There are two things, namely, that I am stuck waiting on: 1. My baby coming, and 2. Law School acceptance or denial letters. And neither is there anything I can do about it. And that drives me CRAZY!!! If you know me, you know that I like to be in charge of things. No, not like… more like NEED to be in charge. I need to know, I have an insatiable thirst to know things. Anything. The ending to a long movie. Whether or not the anecdote Justin Timberlake recites in The Social Network about Victoria’s Secret is true (it was). What I am getting for Christmas (if I can look, I will). Who the person that texted you was (not because I’m jealous, but because I HATE now knowing!) And that’s just it. I HATE not knowing something, I loathe it. If I want something, I want it now, if I want to know something, I look it up. Otherwise it consumes me and drives me to the point of insanity and I end up feeling defeated at life because I just can’t know that one thing. There is a shirt that the last time I remember having was my 21st birthday in Las Vegas back in god-knows-when that I don’t know what happened to and you know what? 5 years later, I still think about it. I WANT TO KNOW!!!

So living in a state of waiting is hell for me. It pretty much destroys my entire life and turns me into an obsessive freak. California Western School of Law has a “status checker” for the status of your application with them and I check it at midnight sometimes. As if they’re updating my status and deciding my application at that time. If I order something online, the tracking number becomes my new best friend and I check it daily. Not because I need the package or anything, but just because I need to know where the package is. I don’t care if it won’t be delivered for a year. If I can track it, I’m a happy girl. With Sophie, every time I have a braxton-hicks contraction along with (literally) any other symptom, I immediately google it to try and see if labor is close. So far, it isn’t.

Yesterday I googled “does a lot of braxton hicks contractions mean labor is close?” just because I NEED something on which to measure! I need it!! I need to know!!!!! Realizing that she will come when she wants to and there is nothing I can do I think has been the most frustrating experience of my life. You better believe at 37 weeks (when she is considered full term) I will be trying every single home remedy I can google to start labor. Except castor oil… that just sounds like a bad idea from what I’ve read. I see her moving in my belly and I feel her rolling around and kicking and it’s as if she’s laughing at me saying “I know something you don’t know”. And she won’t share.

I actually think this state of waiting kind of depresses me. I have no desire to do much, go out… then again, that’s just a part of pregnancy anyways. But still, it’s SO frustrating for me that it actually becomes depressing. I think that a big part of it is that the two biggest things that will happen to shape my future are coming, and I have no control over them. Zero. And that’s really a scary thing. All these other people know how my future is going to shape out and I don’t. So I do the only thing I can do… I continue to wait. And wait. And wait. And check my Cal Western status checker 3 times a day to satiate my need to know.

Top 5 Best Local SD Bands

#1: The Material

From their Facebook Page:

Hailing from San Diego, CA, The Material has catapulted into the national limelight of up-and-coming bands. With their debut EP release “Tomorrow”, The Material has effectively attracted attention from multiple media outlets including television, internet, radio, and even video games.

Fans of The Material have made their presence known by making The Material the number one unsigned band in San Diego Myspace’s music polls and by voting for The Material out of 4,000 bands to perform live on MTV’s Dew Circuit Breakout.

Their song “Moving to Seattle” is featured on the video game Rock Band, they have had songs featured on the WB’s “Sorority Forever”, and have had their video for the song “The Truth About Reality” featured on MTV2.

Currently the band is heading out on tour to promote their highly anticipated new 3-song EP “To Weather The Storm”.

Meet the Band:

Colleen D’Agostino – Vocals
Jon Moreaux – Guitar
Roi Elam – Guitar
Jordan Meckley – Bass
Kevin Pintado – Drums

Hands down #1 is The Material. No questions asked, no doubt about it. I’ve gotten to know the members of this band, current and former, personally, and I have only nice things to say about them. They know and remember each of their fans by their first names and Colleen, the lead singer, makes it a point to connect with every fan during shows. After they break down the equipment for each show (themselves), they come to their own merch booth and are happy to meet their fans, sign autographs, sign merch and pose for pictures. I personally know they love to hug, so make sure to do so next time you see them play.

One thing you can tell about a band is how their former members interact with the band after leaving it. I know 4 former members of The Material, and each one still loves and supports the band and their music. You can find the former bass player, Matt, at many of their shows. At The Material’s first show without original drummer, Noah, he still came and proceeded to jump on stage half-way through the show and rocked out with Jon. Brian and DAS, both former bass players, are still very close with original members Roi, Jon and Colleen, and twitter @ each other often.

The Material is not just a band, but a group of people you can actually reach out to and become friends with. Their level of commitment and contact with their fans puts them above and beyond any other local band, and any band in general. I personally make it a point to introduce The Material to all my friends, and I honestly have yet to find someone who doesn’t love their music. And yes, they may seem similar to Paramour, but if you listen carefully, they are their own unique sound. They have a darker, harder edge to them that makes rocking out a necessity.

Their facebook description obviously was not updated recently, since they have already completed their first full length album that is set to be released 1.11.11, called “What We Are“. Their first EP was “Tomorrow” consisted of 6 rockin’ songs, which is about 10 too short! Off that album, the song “Moving to Seattle” was featured in Rock Band, and is one of my personal favorite songs to play AND sing too. And I don’t sing. A hint though: The drum-track is insane if you go any higher than easy. They are releasing a second song to Rock Band, to be announced. Their second EP, “To Weather the Storm” sounded a bit different from the first one. Their sound and lyrical content had matured and the first track “Unforgivable” has some amazing rifts and sound effects in it. PS, all are available through itunes.

The Material recently released a music video for their song “Before This Ship Goes Down”, check it out here: http://www.purevolume.com/new/thematerial.

You can also buy their awesome merch, previous albums, and pre-order their upcoming album all here: http://thematerial.bigcartel.com/products. I can’t wait for their album release show:

This will be our first Main Stage show at Soma so we really want to see ALL of you there!

WHAT: The Material CD Release Show for “What We Are”
WHEN: Friday, January 14, 2011
WHERE: Soma, 3350 Sports Arena Blvd., San Diego, CA
WHY: Don’t even ask. You DO NOT want to miss this! :]
WHO: THE MATERIAL w/ A Dull Science, Get Back Loretta, Flight To Athena, and more

HINT: Buy multiple tickets by changing the quantity on the check out screen!

CDs and brand new merch (new posters, new shirts, new hoodies, and more) will be on sale at the show!

Tickets will be shipped the week of the show.

Image of WHAT WE ARE CD Release Show Tickets @ Soma (San Diego, CA)

You can buy tickets for this show here: http://thematerial.bigcartel.com/product/what-we-are-cd-release-show-tickets-soma-san-diego-ca. I personally already bought 4 tickets for this, it’s a HUGE event for a local band to be playing the mainstage. I’ve seen Modest Mouse and Minus the Bear among other huge bands play here.

The Material is already a huge band, who have done several nationwide tours, released albums, and all on their own dime! Yes, you heard me right, they are a DIY band, which means when you order something, they are the ones who are driving to the post office and mailing you their merch, with love.

Here is a sampler of their new album: WARNING, it’s amazing.
http://lads.myspace.com/Embeds/SongEmbed/SongEmbed.swf

#2: IVES the Band

From their Facebook Page:

Hello, we’re Ives The Band from San Diego, California. Our debut full length, “The Incredible Story of Mr. Birch“, is available NOW on iTunes and Amazon MP3! Become a fan of IVES & receive exclusive news, contests, and updates here on Facebook!

Meet the Band:

Jason Tolliver
Kyle Moore
Bryce Paul
Drew Newman

I heard of this band because they opened for Dashboard Confessional at House of Blues. I actually arrived to late to hear them at HoB, but I did listen to them online and immediately fell in love with their sound. I bought their album on itunes, and have been a fan ever since. A few months ago I finally got to see them live at The Beauty Bar, and they were even better live. The lead singer’s intensity was so easy to get lost in. And even though it was a small show with not a lot of people there, they committed like it was a huge show. But what makes these guys #2 over some other great bands is how nice they were. I talked to the guys after their show at Beauty Bar and they were so nice, and so open. They actually went all the way out to their van to bring me the two styles of shirts they had, so I could choose, and they offered to give it to me for free! And they threw in a poster, which they all signed for me. I payed them what I could though, because after hearing The Material’s story, they don’t have much to live on day to day when they are on tour. ALWAYS ALWAYS ALWAYS tip your band if you can, and never accept the deal!

Here is a video of them playing live at the House of Blues in Aneheim

Plain and Simple, their music is chilling and magical. It’s GOOD. It’s more than good.

#3: Children of Nova

From their Facebook Page:

“Children of Nova is an American experimental rock band from San Diego, California. The band incorporates aspects of alternative rock, progressive rock, post- hardcore, punk rock, heavy metal and jazz.”

Meet the Band:

Teo – Vocals
Nick – Guitar
Pozzi – Guitar
Mario – Bass
Colin – Drums

I came to know of this band through a guy I dated, who was really close friends with pretty much all the members of the band. Children of Nova also has played alongside The Material many times, which always makes for a hell of a killer rock show. For a short time, I got to hang around these guys and get to know some of them a little bit and one thing I can say about them is that they are all serious about their music, and seriously in love with playing.

Their debut album, “The Complexity of Light“, is a concept album, but even if you listen to the songs alone or in random order, they are all still facemelting!

They break down the concept to the album here, from their Myspace Page:

Hello CON fans everywhere!First off thank you for listening and being a part of our artistic journey!

Our first album, “The Complexity of Light” was just released and the response has been amazing! And while you are all enjoying the music we thought it was important to give you a deeper understanding of the characters, setting and terms used in the story of our album to enhance the overall experience. So here goes….

1. Children of Nova: Our name follows the belief that we are all made up of the same space materials and stardust from giant supernoval explosions.

2. Nova: The leader and defender of light. One of two characters (the other being Corbin) to be tested as leader of his world. He believes he can save the world and everyone in it by instilling hope and courage into their souls. Since childhood, he has suffered extremely lucid, vivd dreams of the future which he has used to bring the hopeless and deprived back to the light.

3. Corbin: The leader and defender of darkness. Born from intense reactions of energy on his home planet, he too was chosen to pursue leadership over his world. But what he craved was control. Although more powerful than his nemesis (Nova), he lacked the ability of forsight. In his experiences he found that crows on Arceadion carried small fragments of time inside them. When they gazed into his eyes he saw a piece of his life, either past, present or future. His connection to the birds was immediate and with their aid he formed his destiny; which ultimately leads to the destruction of the sun.

4. Arcaedion: The home planet to our characters and the setting of our story.

5. The Order: Corbin’s personal army of pure darkness. Once thriving people with unique freedoms, they now turn over their existence to the most powerful of beings and destroyer of the sun, Corbin. He promises them a fresh start in a new system of worlds that he will take them to once he has acquired enough of their life energy.

6. Second Sight Blackout: A prophecy showing the complete destruction of Arcaedion and the final steps of Corbin’s fall into darkness.

7. The Fall of Aphonia: The end of the common man’s silence. We all must be heard.

There is much more to be released and eventually the entire saga will be available. For now, if you have any questions or feel like chatting with us to enter deeper into the story please feel free.  We are unbelievably passionate about what we are creating and your interest is more than appreciated.

We hope all this helped you peer through the door of our overall path and design.

We love and appreciatee you, our fans.

Infinite love and laughter,
Children of Nova

My personal favorite song is “The Order”. The drums on that song are out of this world crazy, and Colin is an excellent musician. Their music composition is far above par from what many other local bands are doing, and they often switch time in the middle of their songs, sometimes several times through a song. Their song “The Complexity of Light” can also be found on Rock Band, and they are soon releasing a second song to the game, to be announced. I heard a rumor once that Teo’s voice hits the second highest note in Rock Band history, the first belonging to Evanescence.  I don’t know if it is verified… but once you listen to the song, it is certainly believable!

Their shows are never boring, and if you miss one, you are truly sad. They don’t just play music on a stage, they put on a show, Teo draws you in with his intensity and the other members of the band keep you entertained with their moves. They definitely are a hardcore rock band, more so than any other band on this list. And beyond that, CoN connects with fans much like The Material. After their shows you can find them at their merch counter, ready to sign posters, autographs, take pics (beware: they’re often sweaty) and give free hugs. They really are some of the chillest, friendliest guys out there, so don’t be scared to come up and say HI to them after a show.

I also just saw on their Myspace Page that they are releasing their second album sometime in the Fall of 2011, so keep following them for updates on this, and shows.

#4: The Silent Comedy

From their Facebook Page:

“It all really started when my brother and I began writing songs and playing together in a little house on an alley in Imperial Beach, California. We had no furniture, no dishes, not even a stove. The only thing in the house was an old upright piano.” says J. John, vocalist and bass player. “We had just moved back to California after living out of backpacks traveling through southeast Asia, India, Nepal, southern Europe, and the United States. We came back with nothing, but someone gave us a piano so we started writing songs.””I used to go into department stores just to play piano in Europe. The management would get upset but people would be crowding around, so they let me play.” adds J. Benjamin, John’s brother, vocalist, and multi-instrumentalist. “They didn’t like a scruffy hobo-looking kid touching their expensive instruments. We really started from nothing when we moved back to the US and have built new lives around our music.”

The Silent Comedy started as a side project of the now defunct post-punk group Dehra Dun. The brothers started that band, named for a city in India where they had lived, in 2002 along with drummer/multi-instrumentalist J. Benedict.

“The Silent Comedy was started with two goals: To be a recording project that could involve many of our musician friends, and to be an outlet for this Americana material we had been writing, ” J. John explains. “We didn’t really intend for it to be a live band at all. One thing led to another, and we needed to play a show that Dehra Dun was unavailable for, so we decided to give it a shot.” I. Forbes, who had played violin with Dehra Dun, and longtime friend J. Michael were enlisted to help with the first show. “After that, things just took off.” Remembers J. Michael.

The band changed from its original idea of a fluid lineup and a strict ‘recording only’ vision to a five piece core with a variety of guests.
In addition to a cast of guest performers, The Silent Comedy is known for its frequent instrument changes, and lively stage antics. Their live show has become their defining characteristic.

“It’s some kind of mix between vaudeville and a tent revival meeting,” says violinist I. Forbes. “We want to give you more for your money than just a bunch of indie guys on stage trying to look as bored as possible. We don’t care a whole lot about being cool.”

Old time clothes, high energy stage antics, foot stomping, and group sing-a-longs define a Silent Comedy performance. “I love their live show.” Offers Tim Pyles (F.M. 94.9, Music Matters Magazine). “It’s got rock and old-time religion, as well as the ability to take you to a space occupied by only a few bands.”

“We wanted to get back to a certain performance ethic.” adds John. “My great-grandparents were traveling performers in vaudeville and that tradition of showmanship is strong in what we do.”

“If you feel like you can’t find music that you can raise your beer to, come see us,” says J. Michael. “Grow a beard, pour a drink and get folked up.”

In late 2007 The Silent Comedy began work on an untitled EP. With songs recorded at XIV Recorders with Brian Karscig of Louis XIV (Atlantic Records) producing. The project promises to be the band’s best studio representation to date. “Until now the live show was the thing to see.” Says J. Benedict. “This recording finally captures a bit of what we try to bring to the show.”

Meet the Band:

Chad Lee: Percussion
Jeremiah Zimmerman: Piano, Guitar, Vocals
Joshua Zimmerman: Bass guitar, Vocals
Justin Buchanan: Banjo, Guitar, Mandolin
Tim Graves: Guitar, Harmonica, Vocals

You know I’m not entirely sure of how I originally started listening to this band. They played a show with The Material once that I wasn’t able to attend, but my little sister and her friends were there and they came home with rave reviews, so I looked em up online and gave them a listen and loved them! I did get to see them play one show though at Soma Sidestage when they played with Children of Nova, and my sister and I bought some shirts from them. They tried to give us a deal, but I refused. And I think I have a crush on all of them! They are some seriously sexy guys!

The Silent Comedy just released their second EP this year, “Common Faults” which can be found on itunes. My favorite song is “Carnival” off “Common Faults” and I think sums up why they are such a fun band to listen to on album, and even funnier to watch play live. Their show is never dull, as they are always switching things up. Including venue. This band plays more venues than any other bands that I follow, which I think is awesome because each time you see them it’s a totally different experience. They just played their last show for the year at U-31, an event that I was unable to attend, and VERY sad about it.

Read this interview from Owl and Bear and you really get a sense of how involved they are in their music, and how much they genuinely care.

#5: Transfer

From their Facebook Page:

“Transfer is a mumu of music draped over the grandma of their genre.”

Meet the Band:

Shaun Cornell, Andy Ridley, Jason Cardenas and Matthew Molarius

I’ve actually never seen Transfer live, but I know that they have played with many of the bands I have already listed above. I do own their album, and it’s a great one! They were just named in Clash Magazine “ONES TO WATCH in 2011″! Read the article here: http://www.transferband.com/transfer/blog-article//412/

Since I don’t know much about this band, I will let their music and fans speak for themselves. But keep a look out on them… I know I will be!!!

December Nights

December Nights

As part of my Holiday List of activities to do, I got started last night by attending December Nights at Balboa Park. I have never attended this before, even though I was born and raised in SD, and I will likely not be going back. Tip if you do go next year: park at Petco for $3 and take the free shuttle to and from. The shuttle trip was fast, warm, and the shuttle was actually nice. Another tip if you decide to go: bundle up. Cause it was FREEZING!! I was so not prepared for it to be that cold. I was also expecting to spend more time indoors, since all the museums were open free to the public for the event. However, much like any big event in San Diego, there were lines… lines for everything! Lines for the museum, lines for what looked like a beer garden, lines for kettle corn. So be expecting that. I also found there wasn’t too much to do besides eat street food and be cold… I thought it was going to be WAY more decorated then it was, and also more going on then there was. Mostly there was just people walking everywhere. We saw one group dance, and one teen choir sing, and that was it. Pretty much as soon as we got there we decided that we would get our free museum in, and then go somewhere warm! The Museum of Photographic Art didn’t have a line, and it was soooo warm in there! But MoPA is a rather boring museum, at least we got in for free. I also thought there would be more vendors out there selling stuff like at Oktoberfest, but either I didn’t see them, or they didn’t exist. All in all, I’m glad I experienced it, but I probably won’t be going next year. Next up is hopefully the Parade of Lights at the Del Mar Fairgrounds!

Holiday Time!

Even though here in San Diego we don’t really have winter, or seasons for that matter… we just have “nice”, I still love this time of the year none-the-less! I am compiling all the San Diego local events that are going on this season that I wanna do! Some are yearly traditions, most are things I’ve never done. Similar to “The List”, I will attempt to participate in all of these fun events, and blog about them!…. So here it goes!

1. Holiday of Lights at the Del Mar Fairgrounds

We San Diegans are notorious for using the drive-thru lanes, so why not to see Christmas lights? With more than 400 lighted and animated scenes, this 1.5-mile drive around the world-famous Del Mar Racetrack is sure to get everyone from ages 1 to 100 into the holiday spirit. With returning holiday favorites such as Toyland, Candy Cane Lane, Treasures by the Lake and Elves at Play, the holiday tradition continues with opening night on November 25 (Thanksgiving) and running through Sunday, January 2, 2011.

2. December Nights at Balboa Park (Click for Blog post)

Traditionally, the holiday season kicks off with a grand celebration in Balboa Park. Balboa Park December Nights is a two-day gift to the community that brings out the holiday spirit in all, this year taking place December 3 and 4, 2010. The beloved San Diego event features sparkling lights, theatrical and musical entertainment, and exotic Food/Spirits throughout the Park.

3. San Diego Parade of Lights

Now this is quintessential San Diego: the 39th annual San Diego Bay Parade of Lights. On Dec. 12 and 19, 2010, 5:30 – 9 p.m., see over 100 boats, all decked out in lighted glory, cruise a 7.5 mile route on San Diego Bay. This year’s theme is a “The Sounds of Christmas” and it promises to be better than ever. Best vantage points from the shore are along the Embarcadero, Seaport Village, Harbor Island and Coronado.

4. The Grinch at The Old Globe

The Old Globe Theater production of “How the Grinch Stole Christmas!” has quickly become an annual holiday classic in a mere 5 years. The musical, directed by acclaimed director Jack O’Brien, brings to life the classic Dr. Seuss book with incredible sets and memorable performances. The 2010 production runs through Nov. 15 through Dec. 28.

5. The Holiday Bowl Parade

The Bridgepoint Education Holiday Bowl Parade at 10 a.m. on Dec. 30, 2010 is known for one thing: balloons. Dubbed “America’s Largest Baloon Parade,” more than 30 giant ballons will float down the one-mile route along the Embarcadero, along with bands, drill teams and more. It’s the precursor to the evening’s main event: the Bridgepoint Education Holiday Bowl at Qualcomm Stadium, one of college footballs most exciting and successful bowl games. After the parade, hit the Family Festival at the Broadway Pier.

6. Ice Skate

It’s our own version of the Rockefeller Center ice rink – the downtown ice rink at Horton Square is a perfect holiday setting, nestled between Horton Plaza and the NBC 7/39 TV studios (can you see the Rockefeller Center parallels?). Beginning Nov. 18 through Jan. 11, 2011, bring the family downtown, in the evening, so you can bundle up in stocking caps and mittens, pretend you’re Manhattanites and skate away. It’s only $14/$12 and proceeds benefit Children’s Hospital. In addition, the Hotel del Coronado offers ice skating by-the-sea with an outdoor ice rink overlooking the ocean from 11/24-1/2. And Viejas Outlet Center boasts San Diego’s largest outdoor ice skating rink.

7. Neighborhood Christmas Lights

Who doesn’t love to see Christmas lights? Several neighborhoods around town put on annual displays (competitions?), but none more venerable than Christmas Circle in Chula Vista, a tradition for over 46 years. People come from all over San Diego to see the wonderful displays. I like the one in Santee over by Mast.

8. Traditions of Christmas

San Diego’s favorite holiday show – now in it’s 18th year!
Traditions of Christmas has a whole new look. CCT is moving San Diego’s favorite holiday show to the beautiful and historic Balboa Theatre right in the heart of downtown San Diego in Horton Plaza. Along with the move downtown comes a fantastic show with new scenes, a new storyline, and lots of new music. There is something for every age from 1 to 100! Come experience the sights, sounds and magic of the holiday season. You will be enchanted by customs from around the world. All your favorite Christmas stories come to life on stage and you’ll be singing along with your favorite holiday songs. There is something for everyone as we visit Santa and Mrs. Claus up in the North Pole.  Enjoy the all new Christmas Countdown of the greatest Christmas songs of all time. Christmas is not complete without a Living Nativity with its inspiring carols, choirs and majestic pageantry. Come see why over 300,000 people come back year after year to this colorful family spectacular.

9. Christmas Movie Line-up

These are some of my favorite Christmas movies: Elf, The Grinch, The Santa Clause, The Holiday, Tim Burton’s The Nightmare Before Christmas, The Family Stone, and The Family Man.

10. Peppermint Mocha from Starbucks

It’s so strong, you can have only about 1 per season.

11. Decorate Holiday Cookies!

Ha!!…. last year at our 1st annual friends christmas party we had a cookie decorating station that, well, ended up being ALOT funnier than any of imagined when we made “cookie porn”. It’s pretty much exactly what it sounds like. Lucky for you, we have the whole thing on video, narrated by my best friends Mike and Cristina, with my loud voice in the background (and foreground sometimes). Enjoy:

12. Wear a really ugly/fabulous Christmas Sweater!

You’ll find Christmas Circle between First and Second Avenues, just south of H. Street and I Street. Read my list of other residential holiday light displays around the county. 

3. Drive-Thru Christmas Lights

We San Diegans are notorious for using the drive-thru lanes, so why not to see Christmas lights? With more than 400 lighted and animated scenes, this 1.5-mile drive around the world-famous Del Mar Racetrack is sure to get everyone from ages 1 to 100 into the holiday spirit. With returning holiday favorites such as Toyland, Candy Cane Lane, Treasures by the Lake and Elves at Play, the holiday tradition continues with opening night on November 25 (Thanksgiving) and running through Sunday, January 2, 2011.

4. Ice Skate Outdoors

It’s our own version of the Rockefeller Center ice rink – the downtown ice rink at Horton Square is a perfect holiday setting, nestled between Horton Plaza and the NBC 7/39 TV studios (can you see the Rockefeller Center parallels?). Beginning Nov. 18 through Jan. 11, 2011, bring the family downtown, in the evening, so you can bundle up in stocking caps and mittens, pretend you’re Manhattanites and skate away. It’s only $14/$12 and proceeds benefit Children’s Hospital. In addition, the Hotel del Coronado offers ice skating by-the-sea with an outdoor ice rink overlooking the ocean from 11/24-1/2. And Viejas Outlet Center boasts San Diego’s largest outdoor ice skating rink.

5. See Boats On Parade – At Night

Now this is quintessential San Diego: the 39th annual San Diego Bay Parade of Lights. On Dec. 12 and 19, 2010, 5:30 – 9 p.m., see over 100 boats, all decked out in lighted glory, cruise a 7.5 mile route on San Diego Bay. This year’s theme is a “The Sounds of Christmas” and it promises to be better than ever. Best vantage points from the shore are along the Embarcadero, Seaport Village, Harbor Island and Coronado.

6. The Holiday Bowl Parade

Speaking of parades…the Bridgepoint Education Holiday Bowl Parade at 10 a.m. on Dec. 30, 2010 is known for one thing: balloons. Dubbed “America’s Largest Baloon Parade,” more than 30 giant ballons will float down the one-mile route along the Embarcadero, along with bands, drill teams and more. It’s the precursor to the evening’s main event: the Bridgepoint Education Holiday Bowl at Qualcomm Stadium, one of college footballs most exciting and successful bowl games. After the parade, hit the Family Festival at the Broadway Pier.

7. Take in the Grinch

The Old Globe Theater production of “How the Grinch Stole Christmas!” has quickly become an annual holiday classic in a mere 5 years. The musical, directed by acclaimed director Jack O’Brien, brings to life the classic Dr. Seuss book with incredible sets and memorable performances. The 2010 production runs through Nov. 15 through Dec. 28.

8. See Sugar Plum Fairies

Of course, what’s Christmas without the Nutcracker? This year, San Diego Civic Youth Ballet is proud to present the premiere of a totally revised Nutcracker. Performances will be held at the Casa del Prado Theater in Balboa Park on December 10 – 19, 2010.

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9. Go Shopping

It kind of goes without saying during Christmas, right? But shopping over the holidays is often more than just buying gifts. For many it’s a way to hook up with friends and family, making the shopping trip more of a social outing. Plus, doing it this way makes the crush of humanity just a little more tolerable.

10. Give A Gift

Lest we get all wrapped up in the material aspect of Christmas, how about buying one extra gift and donating it to someone needy? Whether it’s through the Salvation Army, Toys for Tots or one of the many gift drives conducted by local TV stations, giving to those less fortunate helps remind us all what the holiday season is really about.

11. Ring in the New Year

Celebrate at any of the many parties at hotels and nightclubs to revel in the New Year (the Gaslamp Quarter is a natural setting for this). Or, if you would rather bring along the kids as well, First Night® Escondido presents a premiere celebration of community, the arts, and the New Year.

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Who doesn’t love to see Christmas lights? Several neighborhoods around town put on annual displays (competitions?), but none more venerable than Christmas Circle in Chula Vista, a tradition for over 46 years. People come from all over San Diego to see the wonderful displays.

MOvember Week 4: Thanksgiving Edition

This year there are so many things to be thankful for, despite the hardships I have faced. In April I found out my Mom was diagnosed with Stage IV lung cancer, which the Doctors said was inoperable, incurable, and gave her a short time span to live. Earlier this month, the Doctors exclaimed my Mom was in REMISSION! Can you believe that?! What a miracle it was. She continued to do two more rounds of chemo, and in January will start a 6 week radiation program just to kick that damn cancer while it’s down. While she initially lost all her hair, it is now grown back a little, and its short and gray and she looks like a MUCH hotter Jamie Lee Curtis. So I guess that is mostly what I have to be thankful for this year. Also, I found out in July that I was pregnant with my first child, and even though the father decided to leave us in September, and I’m going through hardships with finding a place to live and dealing with being a single parent, I am thankful that God blessed me with a baby girl, which is what I’ve always wanted. I decided to name her Sophie Pearl. Sophie just because I loved the name, and Pearl after my Mom’s middle name. Each doctor’s visit, she is healthy and growing on schedule, and feeling her kick and move each day in response to my pokes, prodes, and voice is… well, it’s simply amazing. I’m very thankful that Sophie Pearl has the best grandparents in the world, along with an aunt who is gonna spoil the hell out of her, and of course all my best friends who have done everything they can for me through this difficult situation. I love you all, family and friends, and on top of ALL OF THAT, I was able to participate in MOvember, and help bring these amazing men below to you all to show you what a wonderful thing they are doing for cancer research.

 

Here are those amazing men, and some of what they’re thankful for this year too:

Christian N.

Oscar L.

Donate to Oscar here:

http://us.movember.com/mospace/1024490/

Sean B.

“I am thankful for being able to spend more time with my family this year, not needing to shovel snow in Movember, and that I am able to help make a difference for Men’s Health.”

Donate to Sean here:

http://us.movember.com/mospace/853356/

Aaron C.

Donate to Aaron here:

http://us.movember.com/mospace/1099354/

 

Travis T.

“I am thankful for my meMOries with my loved ones.”

 

Tom S.

“This [week 4 picture] is a thinking face. The mo taketh my dignity but giveth me brains. Though actually, I look more like a juvenile Lemmy who’s lost his band.
The Mo cause is going well; donations are picking up and the mo looks like, well, a mo now. For the last push to raise donations, I’m heading to the studio on Friday for a photoshoot. A photoshoot that involves me, cowboy hats, cheque shirts and unfortunately, chaps.  Humiliation in the name of a good cause!”

 

 

Brian W.

“I’m thankful for many things: family, friends, my dads handing down of awesome ‘stache ability, and sweet footy skills.”

 

Eric C.

“This year I’m thankful that no one else close to me has been diagnosed with cancer.”

 

Russ S.

“Thankful here for a healthy life and a happy family (that puts up with my moustache). Hope all is well with you and your in-process little one!”

Donate to Russ here:

http://us.movember.com/mospace/562356/

 

Mike C.

Donate to Mike here:

http://us.movember.com/mospace/908906/

 

Dan M.

Donate to Dan here:

http://us.movember.com/mospace/1001822/

Nate M.

Donate to Nate here:

http://us.movember.com/mospace/943124/

 

Justin R.

“I appreciate all of the support I’ve been getting: whether it’s with a monetary donation, or how my uncle Dan contributed and started his own MO-vember team, he’s raised almost $400 so far, or just your ability to completely terrorize me and my lack of mustache growing genes, thanks Dad for the genetics by the way.”

Donate to Justin here:

http://us.movember.com/mospace/1000146/

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

MOvember Week 3 update

Here are the MOvember Week 3 updates I know you all have been waiting for 😀 These staches are getting PRETTY crazy! Only about 12 days left to grow them in and get some donations!! Thanks to all my Mo participants, you guys are doing such an amazing thing. Don’t forget, today is Have Sex with a Man with a Mustache day, so if you don’t have a girlfriend, get out there and find a nice, classy lady who is willing to donate to charity! Yours truly is also looking for a mustached man…

 

Anyways, on to the men:

Travis T.

Movember Start

Week 2 Mo!

Week 3 Mo!

When I am not driving around in my 1982 IROC Z28 you may find me preparing for the nightly news.
-Ron Burgandy


Nate M.

Start

Week 3 Mo!

Donate to Nate here:

http://us.movember.com/mospace/943124/

David M.

Week 3 Progress

Read David’s Blog here:

http://www.social-gamer.com/

Dan M.

Movember Start

Week 2 Mo!

Week 3 Mo!

Donate to Dan here:

http://us.movember.com/mospace/1001822/

Sean B.

Movember Start

Week 2 Mo!

Week 3 Mo!

Donate to Sean here:

http://us.movember.com/mospace/853356/

Justin R.

Movember Start

Week 3 Mo!

Justin wanted to share with y’all some comments his friends and family have given him:

“Justin,

I think everyone is jealous about your baby face…………………………you better go to the mustache store and get one of those glue on’s.” -His Dad

“What mustache?” -Coworker

“I think he’s talking about his nose hairs Richard.” -Another coworker

Donate to Justin here:

http://us.movember.com/mospace/1000146/

Nate L.

Movember Start

Week 1 Mo!

Week 3 Mo!

“Movember got me free food! I was at the grocery store by my work and the girl working the deli noticed the sweet mo and asked why I shaved my full beard. I told her about Movember and she was so impressed she upgraded my sandwich to a meal for free! Other than being called “Pepe Lepew” at work, the mo is well received. It’s a great conversation starter and I even got a fist-pound from a senior sales rep today”


Christian N.

Movember Start

Week 2 Mo!

Week 3 Mo!


Russ S.

Movember Start

Week 2 Mo!

Week 3 Mo!

“It’s grown in enough now that people understand that it’s intentional. They’re less likely to cross the street and more likely to ask questions and even give the occasional compliment. That drives good conversations about men’s health and Movember. However, the compliments and good conversations don’t extend to the indoor playscape at the Chick-Fil-A in downtown Pflugerville, TX. The parents there eyed me suspiciously. If I hadn’t had my three-year-old to vouch for me, I might not have made it out alive.”

Donate to Russ here:

http://us.movember.com/mospace/562356/

Brian W.

Movember Start

Week 2 Mo!

Week 3 Mo!

“I was at a meeting the other day full of physicians and surgeons and most commented on my “70’s Porno Mustache.”

Aaron C.

Movember Start

Week 2 Mo!

Week 3 Mo!

Donate to Aaron here:

http://us.movember.com/mospace/1099354/

Tom S.

Movember Start

Week 2 Mo!

Week 3 Mo!

“So it seems that for some people, the mo isn’t enough. there are people who are willing to pledge IF a cowboy hat, a cheque shirt AND chaps along with my mo – and then provide photographic evidence. So, if you want to see me humiliated, I’m game. Donations right this way!  http://uk.movember.com/mospace/963312/
I’ve noticed people are now rating my mo now, so there’s definitely some mo pride to be had!”

Donate to Tom here:

http://uk.movember.com/mospace/963312/

Mike C.

Movember Start

Week 1 Mo!

Week 3 Mo!

Donate to Mike here:

http://us.movember.com/mospace/908906/

Oscar L.

Movember Start

Week 2 Mo!

Week 3 Mo!

Donate to Oscar here:

http://us.movember.com/mospace/1024490/

Eric C.

Movember Start

Week 2 Mo!

Week 3 Mo!

This week I crept into the “creepy guy hanging around the grocery store phase” of the mustache.  Looking forward to the next phase-the Magnum P.I. phase.


Aaron B.

Movember Start

Week 3 Mo!


Thanks guys for all the awesome pictures! I may only speak for myself when I say I honestly think y’all look H-O-T!!!

So, we heard word about another official formal MOvember stache party going on at the end of the month. It is being hosted at The Imperial House which in the Balboa area of SD. Details can be found here: http://facialhairformal.com/

This is in addition to the one that is going down at The Double Deuce. Their website can be found here: http://doubledeucesd.com/, although I’m not sure yet what the details are on their stache party.

And lastly, here are some behind the scenes pics of Nate M., Dan M. and Oscar L. being interviewed by Fox6 news for a segment on MOvember.