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This creative co-op art studio offers classes for beginners and advanced artists alike, and I recently started my toddler aged twins in art classes here. Located centrally in Newport Beach just off the 73 freeway and Birch Street, entering you immediately vibe this funky, inspirational workspace with a sense of community - it is one giant workroom with long communal tables inviting artists to share in their creativity.

The kids art classes consist of working with different mediums and exploring freely but with a focus. I had initially thought the class was an hour long and then realized my kids were still sitting there for another 30 minutes fully engrossed when their art teacher said, wow look at the time, time to wrap up! For two toddlers to sit

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A few years ago, I went with a couple friends to the Newport Peninsula to rent stand up paddle boards to take out in Newport Harbor. It was such a great experience, we went back again the following weekend. It is such a fun activity that gets you outside and exercising all while enjoying the sites from the cool water in the harbor.

For the more experienced paddle boarder, the ocean offers a much more challenging workout paddling through the waves and currents. For a few months I visited Paddle Board Newport Beach to rent a board. After realizing how much I enjoyed the sport, I visited Paddle Surf Warehouse in Costa Mesa and purchased my own board.

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If you are looking for a soccer option for your under 4 year olds (your kids have to be 4 to play for AYSO), I recommend Baby Slammers. Slammers is a Newport Beach club team and they offer such a great program for the little ones. Coach Jerry leads the teams with several other awesome coaches. They teach skill sets without worrying about actual games for now.

And they take it seriously - uniforms and all - but still throw in the fun. The practices are at local parks like San Miguel Park and Irvine Terrace Park, which is super convenient because your kiddos can go straight to the playground afterwards. The kids are loving it and the parents are loving it... a win win!

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We just returned from my son and daughter-in-law’s wedding that was held in Temecula.  We hosted a rehearsal dinner in the working “barrel room” at a fabulous venue called Leoness Cellars located in the center of Temecula Valley’s Wine Country.

The ambiance was spectacular. Inside stacked along the walls and up to the high ceiling were, of course, wooden wine barrels accentuated with candles. The Barrel Room is surrounded by vineyards. The weather was perfect for the outdoor cocktail and appetizer hour before moving into the barrel room for dinner. The staff were knowledgeable, professional and attentive. The caterer they suggested was fantastic.

I highly recommend it if someone looking for a venue such as this. It is conveniently located just

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Balboa Island is a wonderful place for both tourists and locals alike. Located in Newport Beach, and adjacent to The Village of Corona Del Mar off of Jamboree, it is connected by bridge to the mainland and offers ferry rides to the Balboa Peninsula on the other side. There is a charming main street - Marine Avenue, with some pretty great foodie restaurants like Mr. G's Bistro and the Royal Hen, some seriously legitimate Mexican food at Picante Martine's and the quintessential breakfast spot - Wilma's Patio.

Don't forget to stop at Dad's Donut & Bakery Shop for a famous Balboa ice cream bar or frozen banana (and they have amazing donuts and cookies too! Try the hippo sugar cookies!). There is a footpath that circles around the island along the beaches

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How have I missed this staple after living in the OC for 6 years?! This Italian Restaurant is the real deal and was established in 1979! Located in Santa Ana it is just a stone's throw to South Coast Plaza and the 405 and 73 freeways. The ambiance is nostalgically old school with waiters and staff that have no doubt been working there for years and take enormous pride in their service.

The food is delicious, coming from "Grandma's recipes". The table side warm spinach salad is quite the show and a great way to start your meal. The homemade pastas are delicious and the risotto out of this world and their dessert souffle's are worth the splurge. A little tip- there is a very cool seating area near the bar called the library - you do not need a

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Aquazzura is an upscale shoe salon located at one of my favorite malls South Coast Plaza – located minutes from another world-class outdoor mall Fashion Island in Newport Beach. The name Aquazzura was inspired by the blue seas of Italy.  Columbian born designer, Edgardo Osorio, co-founded the shoe and accessory company at the age of 25. That’s quite an accomplishment.

After just seven years, Aquazzura is now available at over 300 of the World’s top retailers. The shoe salon features an impressive interior with luxurious, timeless, elegant designs and statement pieces from flats, sandals, boots and booties to sneakers. My personal favorites include the powder puff flat, featured in an array of colors and the downtown bootie. Whether you’re looking for a

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We moved to One Ford Road in Newport Beach, just above Fashion Island, close to one year ago. We chose the neighborhood because of the sense of community it has and the wonderful family-centric amenities. It has been a dream! Our girls ride their bikes to the park or pool (a short ride for all because the community was master planned in one big loop with the main amenities at the center).

The park was remodeled a few months ago and has something for all ages. The Olympic sized pool is awesome for swimming laps or recreational swimming and there is a huge wading pool for toddlers. The front lawn is an idyllic place to throw birthday parties. And then of course there is a comprehensive gym, additional pool, sports court, croquet court, rose gardens and

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My daughter introduced my wife and I to the Bone Adventure in Costa Mesa on Bristol. Our dog loves to socialize with other dogs his size and get a bath. This is the only groomer that he is comfortable with. They also have multiple night stays (your dog needs to pass a 2 hour temperament test and have up to date vaccinations) so you can lodge your dog there when you go on a trip and rest assured your furry family member is being well-loved and having a great time.

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Cold and Flu season is upon us and it’s hitting all parts of Orange County with a force. Here are some of my favorite natural herbs and products that are known for boosting the immune system and fighting infections. My number one go to is, oil of oregano. This herb is a powerhouse. It fights infection and has powerful antibacterial, antifungal, and antiviral properties.

Secondly, you need a good probiotic. Probiotics are known to promote a healthy digestive tract and immune system. Another favorite, but not so pleasant, is garlic in it’s raw form. It contains natural antibiotics. And of course D3, vitamin C and plenty of homemade ginger, lemon, and honey tea. All products can be purchased at Whole Foods in Fashion Island/Newport Beach, Laguna Beach and

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