Saturday, November 18, 2017

Not All Psychics are Fake

On a TV show, Adam Ruins Everything, Season 2 Episode 16 Adam Ruins the Future, Adam did a brief piece on how fake psychics trick people.  He brought on a magic show magician to explain how he does cold readings.  It is actually quite fascinating to see, but it doesn't tell the whole picture.  Someone who have never gone to a psychic will see this and think that all psychics are fake.  I think everyone should see for themselves to see if they are fake or not.

Being an objective person, I did an experiment to go to 6 different psychics, get a reading and see if they all tell me the same thing.

The results were quite interesting.  The quest was to see who was real, who was fake and how they do it.

The first reading I got was incredibly interesting.  I started out with a flat out lie to see if the psychic would correct me.  And she did.  I phrased my question to make it seem I had no doubt about the event such as "why did my father kill himself?"  She closed her eyes and took a deep breath and responded with "he didn't kill himself my dear...  he died of chest pain".   She was right, my father died of a heart attack.

I continued to ask questions to test her ability and when I was happy that she could debunk me at every trick question, I wanted to know about my future.  She told me about an event that were to happen in 3 months time and she was specific about what activity would happen.  When that time came, I knew in an instant that the psychic was real.

The second psychic I went to was a medium.  I found her kind of wierd because she would look above my head and move her hands as if she were moving clouds to see images of what she needed to see.  She told me that my father was slapping me in the head and telling me to stop going to psychics.

The third psychic I went to had a broken accent.  I could tell that she must be from the Caribbean or something.  Somehow she knew how many children I had, what sex and around what age they were.

The 4th psychic had a crystal ball.  I almost laughed at the stupid crystal ball, but she used it as if she was reading pages out of a book searching for answers.  She told me a lot about my current financial situation and every bit of it was true.  She also told me about future money I were to receive and she was correct about that also when the time came about 6 months later.

The 5th psychic I went to claimed to be an intuitive.  She would give advice based on what she could feel.  I thought she was totally fake because when I asked her questions, she couldn't answer them, instead she would ask me questions so I can answer them myself.  When it came to making hard decisions, she wanted me to guide myself and she said that when the time came that "you will know the answer".  Total bullshit.  In my mind, I was thinking that I wanted my money back but she was nice and was wearing rags for clothes.  She also tried to refer me to someone else for some spiritual cleansing that I bet she would make a commission off of.  She was obviously fake.

The 6th psychic gave me mixed answers, some came true and some didn't.  She had a timer and a good chunk of that time was spent on introduction.  I wasn't too pleased because she was rushing me after the timer went off.  I couldn't conclude if she were fake, but I know for sure that she was doing it for the money and that she didn't want to talk to me anymore when time ran out.

I have found that it is a good idea to go to older more experienced mediums for psychic advice.  Mediums have a 6th sense and can communicate with spirits that are attached to you.  I find it amazing how they can tell you about yourself without you telling them.  I like to stay quiet and not reveal anything but answer a few questions without going into detail.  It's their job to ask spirits for information to give you. 

The last psychic I spoke to knew that I was about to change jobs within a few months and that I was taking "classes" in order to prepare myself.  She told me to start preparing my resume...  did I tell her I was retiring?  Nope.  Amazing huh? 

I highly recommend Hollister Rand.  I watched her go around the room speaking to spirits that were connected with the audience.  It was pretty convincing because she didn't ask anyone any questions, she just knew stuff and spit out information like a machine gun.  I recalled that she looked at one member of the audience and told them that the person that hung himself was very sorry that he ended his life so quickly...  the audience member was very amazed and nodded in confirmation. 

Things psychics use:

Tarot Cards - Psychics use these as visuals to guide the conversation.  The cards can be interpreted in infinite ways because the pictures are highly detailed.  A figure holding a box in a hand can mean anything.  Click on the link below to add it to your Amazon shopping cart.

In conclusion, based off my experiences.  75% were true psychics.  If and when you find one, it is like having a cheat code on a video game.

Thursday, November 16, 2017

The US Navy is a Dead End Job

As I look back at my 20 year career in the Navy, it took me this long to figure out that it really is a dead end job.  Here is my advancement history:

E-1 thru E-6: 8 years.
Time as E-6: 12 years.

Hmm... what's wrong here?  Quite simply, there is no room for advancement in the Navy.  For whatever reason, it is extremely difficult to make it up to the next rank.  I was very successful in the first 8 years of my career, some would call me a fast-tracker.  I took on a lot of hard jobs and volunteered a lot in the community.  Advancement was very easy for me because it was just a matter of doing well on an advancement exam.

Now from going from E-6 to E-7, you have to pass a test and get your record looked at by a board of E-9's and Officers.  Passing the test is easy and it doesn't even require studying.  For my last exam I didn't study and "Christmas Tree'd" the score sheet.  Somehow, I still managed to score in the top 93% of all E-6's that took the exam.  What kind of crap is that? 

Part two of the advancement is nothing but a popularity contest.  Navy Chiefs recommend brown nosing Master Chiefs that may have some kind of influence in the board process.  The board process is highly secretive and is held in high regard.  However, perception is that the whole process is rigged.  Somehow, people who elect themselves as "President" of the First Class Petty Officer Association (FCPOA) at a large command usually, if not always get selected for E-7.  If they don't get selected, there is something seriously wrong with them.  Another thing is Sailor of the Quarter (SOQ), this is something that recognizes people that look good on paper.  SOQ has some serious flaws because not everyone that should be nominated go up.  The chain of command is supposed to nominate, and if your chain of command doesn't give a shit, then you're pretty much screwed no matter if you deserve to go up or not.

So what did I do wrong?  Nothing.  When I couldn't be popular enough to be president of the FCPOA, I became president of another volunteer organization and led my peers in that aspect.  My chain of command never nominated me for SOQ.  My evals were written by people who didn't have a strong grasp of the English language so my evaluation write-ups were horrible.  Some say that getting promoted is mostly luck and being at the right place at the right time.

Would I have stayed in the service knowing that I was going to be stuck at E-6?  No.  Absolutely not.  Job opportunities are better paying on the outside.  If I were to know that I would be stuck at E-6, I would have been more focused on myself instead of helping people advance and surpass me.  It's extremely frustrating to see my peers become Senior Enlisted Leaders while I'm still turning wrenches.

So I am writing this just in case someone at their 10 year mark was wondering if they should stay in the Navy or get out.  The best advice that I was given was from my first LPO, "Do everything as if you were staying in, and most importantly do everything as if you were getting out."  Best advice ever...

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Long Trips and Back Pain

Recently, I went on a long trip from San Diego to Las Vegas in a tiny little Prius c. Me and my friend opted to take his car because of the MPG and ease of parking. Well, I got to tell you that it was an experience that put me out of commission for about 4 days. Sitting in a chair that is low to the ground and your knees slightly bent or extended really stresses your back muscles. There were a few cars I had in the past that gave me problems and they were all little bitty cars like my old Saturn SL1 and Nissan Sentra, but when I upgraded to a larger vehicle such as a SUV where I can raise the seat to near chair height, my back pain was alleviated.

So for the long weekend, I stayed home, lying on my back taking 500 mg of motrin.

It's been a while, but that trip reminded me why I got a larger vehicle.  Avoiding what causes back pain is totally worth the extra money on paying for lower mpg.   

Click on the link to add this to your Amazon shopping cart if you need it.  I get a small referral fee that costs you nothing and helps me so I can keep blogging.  Thanks!

Sunday, November 12, 2017

Separation Anxiety

This blog is almost as old as my entire career in the military. I can't believe it. I will be separating soon. I still have 7 months to go... Now, I have prepped myself and did everything that my mentors have told me. Get a degree... got it. Get your certifications... got it. Complete your USMAP (United States Military Apprenticeship Program)... done. However, despite all the accomplishments and accolades that I have earned, I feel somewhat nervous about separating. I'm always hearing stories about people not getting employment within the first year after separation. Some freshly separated folks have to collect unemployment while searching for a job... the list is endless. Trying not to focus on the negatives is a really hard thing to do. A new thing that has come up is that there is a 180 day gap after separation before being able to apply for a GS job (federal job). I think that is complete bullshit for anyone that is enlisted and cannot create a job opening for themselves. Oh well, whatever. Private sector it is. Well... even working in the private sector isn't secure either. It is easy to get laid off without much notice. The money is good though, but there isn't much benefits that come from it, like a legit retirement plan. I recently watched a show called "Adam Ruins Everything" and he ruined 401Ks. He states that money that come from 401Ks don't provide enough income to maintain your standard of living... more like a quarter of it if you're lucky. I know that I am ranting on and on, but it is really hard to predict the future. So yeah, retiring from the military makes me nervous.

Saturday, November 11, 2017

Thoughts on Chivalry

Dating rules have drastically changed within the past few decades.  The spawn of the internet and dating apps have seeded the expansion of potential mates.  Darwinism, which is the theory of evolution by natural selection, has died off as far as mating goes.  Now, anyone with three eyes and a tail can find a match, all with the ease of the internet.  There are sites that even allow people that lack all their teeth to meet each other such as Farmers Only! 

Some say that chivalry is not dead and it is evident that every so often you see that men still open doors for women and offer them their jackets when the temperature is slightly below the comfort zone.  There is still an argument of whether or not it still exists.  Depending on where you live there is a gender disparity, in military areas like San Diego, men outnumber women 3 to 1 (, 2017).  In these places, men may need to go to extremes to attract the opposite sex.  Hence, chivalry must exist there, right?  Not necessarily.

As the population of millennials grow, medieval acts of chivalry are increasingly becoming known to be sexist as women are gaining independence.  Times are changing.  True gentlemen question if they should or should not be gentlemanly.  It seems like as if acts of chivalry are performed, it could be deemed as offensive and vice versa.  What do you think?

If you want more information about dating and stuff, get this book. Enjoy!

Monday, May 29, 2017

My First Truck, 2017 Honda Ridgeline Black Edition

I bought a new truck!  I traded in the 2013 Prius v for this bad-boy.  

I have owned many vehicles.  This is my 10th vehicle.

Cars I've owned:
1. 1984 Red Pontiac Fiero
2. 1996 Gold Saturn SL1
3. 2002 Red Nissan Sentra SE-R
4. 1996 Gold Toyota Previa
5. 2006 Red Toyota RAV4 4WD
6. 2012 Red Chevrolet Convertible Camaro V6
7. 2012 White Chevrolet Traverse (Totaled)
8. 2012 Green Dodge Grand Caravan
9. 2013 Black Toyota Prius V Swag Wagon
10. 2017 Honda Ridgeline Black Edition AWD (Current)

Most of my purchases have been very economical, practical cars.  The 2017 Honda Ridgeline is pretty practical and economical (sort of).

I got the Black Edition which is the highest level trim.  It comes with radar-cruise control, lane departure assist, in-bed speakers, a trunk (YES!), Apple / Android Car Play, premium sound system with subwoofer, moon-roof, electronic sliding rear window and parking sensors.

This is the most high tech vehicle I've ever owned and for the price tag of $38,750 (MSRP $43K) it is a really good truck.

The 2017/2018 Honda Ridgeline Black Edition has painted wheels which require a unique lug nut socket to prevent marring of the paint.  Click the link below for the correct size lug nut socket.  A must have item!!!

Sunday, July 10, 2016

Pets: An Untapped Market

Did you know that there is $$$ to be made in pets?  If you ever go to PetSmart or Petco, you'll see that there isn't much "variety" in pet products.  Sure, their stores look huge on the outside, but go inside and you'll see that each isle is dedicated to different animals.  Pet stores are seriously lacking in pet products for each type of pet.  For example, the cat isle is usually half an isle dedicated to toys and the other half isle to bowls and litter boxes.  If someone got smart and had a lot of start up cash, there could be warehouse stores about the size of a Walmart Supercenter.  There should be a small zoo and activities for pets to include obstacle courses, various pet hotels with internet cameras, and of course accessories.  These stores should be destinations for socialization... a place where people would want to spend a big part of their day.

Katie the Lovable Cat
 For people that have pets, they treat their animals like humans.  When I was in Japan, practically everything a human has (except for electronic devices) their pets would have.  Everything is shrunk to fit their needs like beds and clothing. 

Pet hotels.  Today, I tried to find a boarding place for my cat so that I can be at ease while I take a week long vacation.  To my surprise, the pet boarding place was completely booked for the summer.  I couldn't believe it.  I even came a month in advance.  The lady at the counter asked if I wanted to be placed on the waitlist.  Of course, I said sure and I looked at the outlook calendar on her desktop computer.  There were 25-30 people on the waitlist for next month!!!  Again, I couldn't believe my eyes.  Knowing this, the pet business is truly an untapped resource.  Only if people knew...

Sunday, June 19, 2016

Gripes about living in San Diego

There probably isn't many articles about the downside of living in San Diego, but here are my gripes.

1.  The major league sports teams suck.  The Padres and the San Diego Chargers are among the worst teams.  I really want to love them... I really do.  It's just that every game ends in disappointment.

2.  Expensive!!!  It's really hard to survive out here.  You definitely can't live off minimum wage and trying to raise kids is even more expensive because there's no cheap childcare options.  From eating out to getting gas, everything is so damn expensive because of the "sunshine tax".  Good luck trying to purchase a house.

3.  Homeless people are everywhere.  You'll see them at almost every curb and intersection out here.  With the great weather, it is no question why the homeless would want to live and stay in San Diego.

4.  Micro breweries are everywhere.  I like beer, don't get me wrong.  But I can't tell the difference and there's no major brand that people stick to out here so it's hard to find common ground.  Sitting around and drinking beer isn't at all productive.  With all this drinking, there's a lot of drinking and driving.  I'm sure there's hundreds of intoxicated people on the road right now, so it doesn't become a question if you'll you struck by an drunk driver, it's when.

5.  Fires.  There is a constant threat of fires no matter what time of the year.  Oftentimes, this causes the next issue, traffic.

6.  Traffic and noise.  Like any big city, San Diego has lots and lots of traffic.  If you live in San Diego, you live near a freeway.  They're everywhere.

7. Male to Female Ratio.  Because of the numerous military bases in the area, males outnumber females nearly 7 to one.  There is a big gay community here which includes lesbians.  Women have a major advantage here to find a mate if they wanted one.  This is good for them in the dating scene but bad for them on the professional career scene where men of power in the workplace treat attractive, unattached women with concierge preferential treatment. 

8.  Drugs and the border.  The news is constantly showing drug busts and tunnels.  There's a huge amount of drugs flowing in and out of San Diego.  With that brings crime and human trafficking.  Children are constantly being eyed for kidnapping near schools in this area.  So I wouldn't consider San Diego a good place to raise a family, rather than a great place for young adults.

9.  Military presence.  Yes, I know.  I'm in the military but that doesn't mean that I embrace everything about it.  Military people of every branch are everywhere which isn't a bad thing, but it annoys the shit out of me.  I don't know why, but it does.  Maybe because it NEVER feels like I'm out relaxing and that I'm constantly reminded that I'm on duty 24 hours a day.

10.  Everyone is trying to one-up each other.  What you wear and what you drive matters.  You are what you present yourself to be.  Individuality is strong here and there's a lot of diversity.  Everyone thinks that their home country/culture is the best in the world and is not afraid to show it; almost obnoxiously so.  Some people may think this is a good thing, but I see it as exploitation.   As a result, people are trying to appear much richer than they actually are and are contributing to the problem with the decline in human values.

Thursday, June 09, 2016

Reverse Lottery

I watched this interesting documentary about living in a van.  This lady talks about giving up her house and living in a van.  Giving up possessions and spending less on things to fill up a house with.  It's like the ultimate form of freedom and with a cost effective lifestyle.  The more that is given up, the more time that is given to you.  The energy that used to be spent on fixing, maintaining and cleaning your home is draining and relaxation time often means sitting on a couch and staring unproductively at a TV screen.  Whereas the van life is spent doing cool and fun stuff and meeting new people and experiencing new things.  Van life forces you to have less clothes and possessions.  The payoff is better than living a life where you are constantly paying for things.  Not having so much stuff and so much responsibilities is liberating so you have time to actually do things that you are interested in.  Having a home that is too big and too comfortable will only keep you from all the things that happen outside in the world that is constantly evolving.

Before taking on something like this, you have to ask yourself a few questions.  Would you mind taking baby-wipe showers?  What would you do if you needed to use the restroom?  Can you give up internet?

This is not a lifestyle that everyone should do, but this is a lifestyle best reserved for the most adventurous and most interesting people on Earth.

Below is a clickable link to a book that explains the ins and outs of living a minimalistic lifestyle by living in a van by someone who is doing it.

Thursday, May 12, 2016

Family Pic

A simple family picture that was taken at Admiral Baker Park.  V (8) N(9) 

Things like Facebook and Instagram is taking me away from Blogging.  I hate that I don't update this as much as I used to.  One of my hard-drives crashed so I lost a ton of digital pictures from the past.  I'm uncertain if I can recover them all.  So I'll do my best to post some updates here and there.

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

The Number 22

22.  Do you know what 22 is?  22 is the number of young military veterans that take their own lives everyday.  It is an epidemic that can be prevented, yet so little is done to actually address the issue.  For one day that is a lot.  The number surpasses the number of suicides by civilians by 2 times.  Is it because of the operational tempo at which military members deploy and separate from their families and loved ones?  Is it due to post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)?  Is 22 an accurate number and should we be concerned that this number would create an unhealthy stereotype that all military members of the armed forces have a wire lose somewhere?  The truth is, the vast majority of our young veterans are okay.  Most of them are healthy and doing well.  Most of them have strong, everlasting friendships.  The pay isn't even that bad.  The military provides enough money and allowances for food, shelter, education, healthcare and beer.  So why are they killing themselves?  I believe the answer to this is one simple phrase.  "High expectations."  In the military, members are taught to have a slightly greater than zero tolerance for failure.  Military members have sharper instincts, they show up on time, they have a greater understanding of responsibility and have an uncanny sense of attention to detail.  That type of stuff cannot be taught in college.  Teenagers are thrown into bootcamp and are challenged mentally and physically and are forced to make swift decisions as if their life and the lives of their fellow members depend on it.  Military members are taught to adapt and overcome any adversary that may come along the way in life, however the one thing that isn't taught... is dealing with failure.  Everything that is done, there is an "instruction" or manual for it.  Instructions must be followed or consequences will be dealt with via the Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ).  Of course, there is annual "training" to identify that there is indeed a problem with suicide, but given how military members are programmed, failure is too much.  The problem is, high expectations are expected.   There's gotta be a phrase that says if you keep your expectations low, than you'll never be disappointed.  The cure for suicide?  There isn't any, but you know what helps?  The Swahili's got it right.  "HAKUNA MATATA."

Saturday, June 06, 2015

San Diego Comic Art Gallery

Every first Friday of the Month at NTC, Liberty Station there are free art exhibits.  On June 5, 2015, Kevin Eastman, the co-creator of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, came to show off his first turtle sketches.  It was a great night with super-TMNT-fans, photographs and autograph signing.

Sunday, April 26, 2015

Hillcrest Farmer's Market in San Diego

I just stopped by the Hillcrest Farmer's Market in San Diego and here are my unbiased observations.

-Get to run into a lot of great people with positive attitudes.  There's no hate here.  Everyone is the same and they all love each other.
-Nice variety of fresh grown organic produce.
-Nice variety of world cuisine.
-People watching.  There's a lot of unusual looking humans of all types on Hillcrest.

-Park far and take a free trolley bus, it says "FREE" all over the bus, but there's a huge tip jar at the exit next to the driver with dollars spilling out, so exiting the bus without tipping feels kind of bad.
-Price of produce.  How do they decide the price of their food???  Do they just round up and guess what the local price is?  Have the sellers NEVER visited a grocery store?  It's like $5 for a bag of ugly Naval oranges whereas it's $2.50 at a local grocery store for the same amount.  A small basket of strawberries are also nearly double priced as well.  Do they think I'm stupid? 
-Bring cash.  Sorry, you can't utilize your "rewards" card and earn points here.  I spotted maybe two or three places that took credit.
-People bring their dogs.  If you don't like dogs or are allergic to them, avoid this place at all costs!

Overall, don't expect to go bargain shopping here, but to find a good local variety of fresh fruit, vegetables, eggs, and world cuisine.  It is a good way to try out unusual foods like raw sea urchin or tofu dipping sauce.

My New Crib

I moved into this new place in San Diego at the Rancho Mission Villas.  I've been remodeling this place by myself.  So far, I've replaced the flooring with porcelain wood-like tile, repainted all the walls, repainted all the baseboards and replaced the damaged ones, removed the popcorn ceiling, replaced all the outlets with updated ones including those with USB, placed motion sensing light switches to automatically shutoff, replaced kitchen lighting fixtures with LED, installed a ceiling fan in the dining area, replaced all chrome faucets and knobs with brushed nickel... the projects don't stop.  I'm planning on putting a backsplash in the kitchen and vanity room.  So far all the improvement projects have cost me around $3,000 doing it all myself.

Monday, October 13, 2014

Analyzing the Possibility and the Advantages of Homelessness

Being that rents, mortgages and HOA fees are so ridiculously high, homelessness has become an option for many here in San Diego.  The average rent as of June 2015 is $1,514.  Middle class families are forced to move out of rentals and purchase, which is driving up home prices.  Although, apartment complexes are being built, it could take many years for the home market and rents to drop again.

After speaking with some active duty Sailors that work with me, I have found out that some of them are indeed homeless and are bouncing around on people's couches.  Make no mistake, these guys are still collecting BAH which is the basic allowance for housing, yet they want to pocket that money or pay for a home in a remote location which makes it unfeasible to drive to and from work.  After contemplating this option myself, I have opted not to.  It would be rather simple to just live in my car and shower at work, eat at the galley for breakfast, lunch and dinner for less than $8 a day.  It's quite enticing if you put the numbers together.  The savings are exponential.  A major question I would have for myself would be what I would do with all the extra time?  Would I hang out at the beach all day?  Where would I sleep?  A rental solves that issue since I have a bed, wireless internet, laptop and cable TV to keep me company.  But I've always wondered can I do without it?  Can't I just sleep in my car and read books at the public library to kill time?  Doing things like dating and going to bars is out of the question for me for I pay child support which consumes a big chunk of my pay.  The money I have left is better utilized for food and other basic necessities in order to survive.  So would I do it? 


Because after speaking with the Sailors actually living on the streets are extremely unhappy with their lives and their current situation.  They tend to be embarrassed to explain what they did on the weekend or end up finding 2nd employment. 

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Observances of my years while active duty.

The 20 year mark in the military marks a milestone for the incredibly small percentage of folks that actually stay in for that long.  In less than four years, I'll reach that milestone and it makes me a little bit nervous.  I joined during a period of time when no one used cellphones.  E-mail was rudimentary.  We were using Windows 98.  I can recall vividly when bell-bottoms were worn and I stood watch during the whole Y2K scare where all electronic devices were supposed to fizzle out when the clock stroke midnight when the clocks changed to the year 2000.  The Clinton years were the good times, no one thought about war, the only major thing going on was the BRAC (base realignment).  Bases were getting shut down everywhere.  I remember being in biomed school when 9/11 happened.  The break-room was eerily silent as the second plane hit the second world trade center.  The angry faces of all my fellow Sailors, Soldiers and Airmen as they stared at the television while the events were unraveling had been permanently etched in my mind.  When I checked into Lemoore, I remember President Bush declaring war and sending troops to Iraq.  Some of my fellow friends and Shipmates were sent there and they came back with stories of taking down the statue of Saddam Hussein.  I got married.  I went to more school.  I got stationed half a world away with a weird and quirky culture, Japan.  I was sent to Kuwait.  I traveled some more and got stationed in DC.  I even deployed to Africa and Afghanistan.  Almost got killed several times in my epic journeys.  In some instances, I almost shit my pants but I'm not even allowed to talk about it.  I even honorably served with the President of the United States which was a very humbling experience that made me respect our government even more.    With numerous deployments and absences, I contributed to Navy statistics, I was ultimately betrayed and I got divorced.  The marriage produced two kids who are fantastic little people.  I'm now serving my last and final tour.  Getting closer and closer to retirement.  I've grown from past experience not to trust anyone.  I'm prepping myself for the worst.  Paying off all my debts, saving for 2 years of unemployment and completing my Bachelors in Applied Science.  The life of this Sailor has been filled with death-defying adventure, constant relocation and intense loneliness.  But do I regret joining the U.S. Navy?  Hell no!  All of the above is part of the package.  I look forward towards the next chapter of my life, the civilian life.  I am older, more mature, and disenchanted with love.  I have been trained by the best and I can't wait to move on.  It feels as though as an American, I live to work rather than live to live because living is so mundane while working with people to achieve a common goal is so damned satisfying.

The Lone Sailor Statue which ironically and unexpectedly defines my current life in the Navy.

Saturday, September 27, 2014

Awesome Things to do with Kids in San Diego

You can read a million articles online about what there is to do in San Diego.  I have made it my life's mission to find cool and unique things to do that you and your kids will surely enjoy.  With this blog article being a LIVING post, I'll update it as often as possible as I discover new things!  Unlike other posts about family events, I'll clue you in on the parking situation as well, because parking is a premium in San Diego!

1.  Bring your family on a bicycle ride around Coronado Island.  As soon as you cross the Coronado Island bridge, take the first right and another right into the park.  From there, find parking and off load your bikes and go for a bike ride around this island!  There is a long paved road for bikes to travel around this island.  There's free parking if you make two rights right after crossing the bridge.  I've never had trouble finding parking here.

2.  Get an annual pass to the San Diego Zoo!  There are unique events going on throughout the year and having an annual pass gives you a chance to see all the animals up close which is something you cannot do if you just visit the zoo once or twice.  The tigers and monkeys are active during different times.  After visiting the zoo many different times, the tiger only came out for up-close viewing once.
**In the summertime, the San Diego Zoo does Night-time Zoo!  This is truly a unique experience where you get to see animals that are usually asleep during the day roam and prowl around at night.  The kids and I got to hear the lion roar and the kids were terrified.  The predators are active during this time and with spotty lighting, it can be scary for little ones.  There is a huge parking lot here.

3.  Take your family to the beach!  San Diego has several different beaches.  Some have cliffs, some have shallow areas full of wild life and some are completely flat and some are lit up at night. 
  • Mission Beach - This beach is lit up at night and is near a carnival.  The carnival, a.k.a. Belmont Park, has a wooden roller coaster, arcade, carnival games and plenty of rides.
  • Coronado Beach - This is the only beach in the world with gold flakey sand.  It is not real gold, it is mica which has no real value, but it is really nice to bring the kids to.  It is long, flat and wet which make it a runners sanctuary and sand castle builder's dream.
  • Sunset Cliffs - This is off the end of Interstate 8.  It leads directly into the Sunset Cliffs before you get to Point Loma.  There are a lot of surfers and spectacular views.  The edge may be a bit scary for those afraid of heights.  Keep your kids on a short leash.
  • Point Loma Tide Pool - After paying the $5 entrance fee, you can see wild sea creatures at the tide pool.  This area is protected by the Department of Agriculture and you can be fined for taking anything you find there including sea shells.  Some of the shells here are perfect for hermit crabs and on occasion, you may see one.  Kids really enjoy this one-on-one experience and beautiful views of the ocean.
4.  Visit "The Living Coast".  This is an interactive aquarium with a sting ray petting area, shark tank, eagles, etc.  They have animal feedings about 4 times a day which draw large crowds.  There's also a trail that leads out to the bay with the ruins of the old gunpowder plant and overgrown railroad tracks.  Parking is free and there is a free shuttle from the parking lot to the nature center.

5.  Go Cruising around Downtown San Diego.  This is rather an inexpensive journey.  From Petco Park to Adams Avenue, there's plenty to see, cool things to discover.  Small businesses thrive here.  Cupcake stores to costume shops.  You never know what you'll find unless you go out and explore.  Kids will awe in amazement with the city skyscrapers of downtown and the beautiful treed landscape while cruising through Balboa Park.

6.  Friday Night Liberty @ NTC at Liberty Station.  Every first Friday of the Month between 5-9 pm the art galleries are no cost.   There are live performances and art studios for kids.  It's also a beautiful place to visit outside of Balboa Park.  Lots of open room, parks and plenty of parking.

7.  The Cat CafĂ©.  This idea came from cat cafes in Japan where you can just sip coffee (hot chocolate or whatever) and play with cats.  The price of admission is the cost of a cup of coffee; just buy a cup and they'll let you in.  On crowded days, they let people in in 30 minute intervals and on slower days, you have plenty of time to enjoy the cats.  All the cats are up for adoption.  The cats are not always active so just let them be cats and take all the pictures you want.  Parking in downtown can be pretty hairy so I just park in the south end of Horton Plaza parking structure and get my ticket validated inside to score 3 hours of free parking at the cost of buying candy or something in Horton Plaza.