Our trip to Disneyland

The Frozen float is now at Disneyland

I’m just back from our first ever visit to Disneyland, and we had a blast. While my children loved the haul of a bag full of chocolate candy one month early at Mickey’s Halloween party, most of our fun happened outside the space of the party (which I recommend for much older kids or adults). […]

Apple-picking with children near the Bay Area

Apple picking with children in the Bay Area

Looking for a place to get your hands on a bushel of apples? Well, ’tis the season. Always double-check with the farm in question before you pack up your hungry posse of children. Apples might grow on trees, but when they’re gone, they’re gone. Berkeley mom, Becky, shared the story of her children’s apple day […]

Halloween happenings at Disneyland

Halloween at Disneyland

Next month, I’ll have the opportunity to take my children (age 3, 7, and 9) to Disneyland for the first time EVER. And while we’re there, we’ll get to add an extra dose of Halloween magic to our visit. Beginning September 12 and leading up to Halloween, Disneyland puts on its own costume and enhances a few […]

Unaccompanied minors in the air

Kids flying alone on Southwest Airlines

My children, 7 and 9, flew Southwest to Los Angeles yesterday without a chaperone. Here’s how it works: My mom, the person on the receiving end of my most valuable air mail ever, purchased the tickets over the phone. It costs a non-refundable $50 per child per ticket ($100 round trip each) in addition to […]

Vacation Inspiration: Renting an RV


“Whatever this vacation cost,” said my husband, who had almost nothing to do with the itinerary and reservations, “it was worth it.” That’s how I knew our family’s maiden RV voyage was a success. Yes, Arizona and Utah are uncomfortably hot in July, and yes, our real dream was to travel in Spain this summer, […]

Day trip to the Fitzgerald Tide Pools

Fitzgerald Tidepools near Moss Beach

I want to thank Keira Armstrong for sharing her experience at the Fitzgerald Tidepools with us today. She’s the Berkeley mother of two elementary-school-aged boys. The Fitzgerald tide pools are are really accessible (only 1 hour drive from Berkeley with normal traffic), parking is easy and access to the beach is relatively easy for all […]

Overnight camps for Bay Area kids

Cazadero Overnight Music Camp

Let’s talk about that special kind of Summer Camp that really makes memories (like of your first slow dance or time shaving your legs in a communal sink). I went to clown camp — true story — as a kid for a couple weeks at a time each summer. We marched in a town parade […]

Field trip this weekend: Sunset Celebration Festival

Celebration Weekend 2012 gardens

This guest post was written by Dana Smith, Berkeley mom to a third grader and sixth grader, and head of PR for Sunset Magazine. For the past six years, my family and I have spent the first weekend of June in Menlo Park at Sunset Celebration Weekend, the annual weekend-long party that Sunset magazine hosts throughout […]

{510} Family Faves with Hip Mama, Jessie Susannah

{510} Family Faves with Hip Mama, Jessie Susannah

I’m excited to bring you one more in our series project profiling contributors to Bay Area-based parenting magazines, Rad Dad & Hip Mama. Visit the respective websites to purchase and read everything from childcare swaps tips to sex-positive parenting. Jessie Susanna is the seventh (and final maybe!) in our continuing series. Jessie wears many hats: Ima to Avi Grace; single parent healing […]

Treebones Resort, kid-free vacation inspiration

Treebones Resort south of Big Sur, yurt glamping

For my birthday last year, I enjoyed the luxury of a few kid-free days driving down the coast with my husband. With only three days to be wild and free, we discovered Treebones Resort, a collection of deluxe yurts with ocean views and a killer restaurant somewhere south of Big Sur. With no in-unit toilets or […]

Renting an Airstream near Monterey — or Camping for Dummies

Airstream at KOA campground

I hate to be cold, which means as much as I’ve tried, I don’t truly love camping in Northern California. Or, let’s be honest, anywhere. But a few months ago, I reserved an Airstream at the KOA campground in Watsonville, CA, and my family and I had a fantastic — and fantastically cheap — getaway. […]

Vacation inspiration: Moss Beach (not Moss Landing)

Moss Beach Playground

Thanks to Jennifer Saranow Schultz, a Bay Area mom and writer of HintMama.com, for this piece about Moss Beach, a super close and toddler-friendly getaway. If you would like to share your Bay Area road trip ideas with us, please send them to info@510families.com. As my husband and I learned last year on a three-hour […]

Registration now open for Berkeley Sierra Family Camp


Following last year’s complete destruction of Berkeley’s Tuolomne Family Camp, arrangements have been made to offer a similar experience at Echo Lake in the Tahoe region. Berkeley residents can sign up for select weeks of family camp programming beginning TODAY and non-residents may sign up beginning February 19th. Walk-in registrations at the Parks Department {1947 […]

Vacation inspiration: Moss Landing

Moss Landing - Bay Area Road Trip

My brood just spent a lovely three-day weekend in Moss Landing with extended family and I thought it might inspire some of you who are seeking Bay Area road trip vacation ideas. A group of 120 rental houses sit along a stretch of coast about two hours from the Bay Bridge. Each home has a […]

Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow!


While our raincoats and boots are drying in the entryway, there is some snow in Tahoe (like only 20% of normal — eek!). Here are a few places that might be worth the drive: Leland snow play, tubing for all ages has been open off-and-on this season Tahoe Donner, affordable for kids and beginners, is […]

Where do you take guests from out-of-town?


To show off the East Bay to your friends from back home, where do you go? When I lived in San Francisco, I always drove to the top of Twin Peaks and parked so we could look down on everything. I haven’t done that in years. Sigh… We asked our hecka fine Facebook community, “Where […]

Safari West: An Oakland family surprises the kids with a mystery trip


Thanks to Oakland writer Nancy Davis Kho for sharing her story with us today. When I was a kid in Upstate New York, my parents surprised my older siblings and me one day by taking us on a Mystery Overnight. They only told us to pack pajamas and a change of clothes. Then they drove […]