5 Fantastic Fall Family Hikes in Marin

September 12, 2017

Fall offers some of the finest weather of the year in Marin and the San Francisco Bay Area, so make sure you take some time to hit the trail and take in a hike before the weather turns cold and wet. The coastal areas in Northern California are particularly nice in the fall, and are often warmer and clearer than inland. (Photo: Rush Creek, Novato)

North Bay's Largest Children's and Maternity Consignment Sale this Weekend!

September 11, 2017

Come shop until you drop at this weekend's North Bay Just Between Friends Mega Children's Sale at the Sonoma County Fairgrounds Grace Pavilion in Santa Rosa. Taking place today, Thursday, September 14 through 17, 2017, Just Between Friends is the North Bay's largest children's and maternity consignment event.

Get a great deal on over 100,000 consignment items in 40,500 square feet of shopping space, including toys, games; outdoor gear; mommy supplies; furniture; crafting, school and party supplies; and more. You'll save 30–90% off retail prices on tons of gently used and even new items. Cash, checks, debit cards, and Visa and Mastercard are accepted. Bring your own bags, baskets, or even a wagon to carry your deals.

Best Friends/Worst Enemies: Friendship Development, Popularity, and Social Cruelty in Childhood

September 11, 2017

Mt Tam Speaker Series

Marin Mommies presents a sponsored shout-out from Mount Tamalpais School in Mill Valley.

Mount Tamalpais School in Mill Valley is excited to present its first Bringing It Home Parent Education Speaker Series event with Michael Thompson’s talk: Best Friends/Worst Enemies: Friendship Development, Popularity, and Social Cruelty in Childhood. Mr. Thompson’s talk is open to the public. Please join us on Tuesday, September 26 from 7–8:30 pm on our campus in Summit Hall.

Apple Walnut Bread is Delicious and Easy to Make

September 10, 2017

In the late summer we love to go apple picking at farms in Marin and Sonoma County. It's so much fun to choose and pick your own fruit, but sometimes you end up with more apples than you know what to do with. I've been trying to figure out different creative ways to use apples, since I hate to see any go to waste.

Fresh-baked apple walnut bread is delicious, easy to make and a great way to use up extra apples. It also makes the house smell amazing while it's baking. It's good as part of breakfast, as a snack, or even dessert. My kids love to get a slice in their lunchboxes, too.

Ingredients

  • 1-1/2 cups peeled, cored, and chopped apples
  • 1-1/2 cups all-purpose flour

All Aboard! Tickets for The Polar Express Train Ride on Sale Soon

September 10, 2017

The Polar Express

Get ready to believe! Tickets for the California State Railroad Museum's annual holiday Polar Express train rides go on sale to members only on September 26–28, 2017 and to the general public on Saturday, October 1, 2017. The Railroad Museum's sister organization, Railtown 1897 in Jamestown will also be holding Polar Express train rides again this holiday season.

Members of the Californa State Railroad Museum and Railtown 1897 are eligible to participate in member advance ticket sales. In order to reserve member tickets, your membership must be active or renewed as of Monday, September 5, 2017.

Celebrate Art and Storytelling with the Marin Comics Fest

September 9, 2017

Marin Comics Fest Celebrate art and storytelling at libraries across the county at the first Marin Comics Fest! Taking place starting today, September 9, 2017 and running through September 16, the Marin Comics Fest features fun family-friendly happenings at local Marin libraries and other venues, including Blue Moon Comics and Copperfield's Books in San Rafael.

Learn about comics, graphic novels, a from renowned cartoonists, artists, and writers like Art Roche, Thi Bui, Judd Winick, Serena Valentino, Brian Fies, and others. There will even be a Latino comics expo at the Novato Library on Saturday, September 16.

Check their page on the San Rafael Library's website for a full schedule of events and locations, and follow the Fest on Facebook for updates and info. The Marin Comics Fest is produced in in partnership with Friends of the San Rafael Public Library, Copperfield's, and Blue Moon Comics.

Marin Weekend Family Fun for September 8–10

September 8, 2017

Pick your own organic apples at Chileno Valley Ranch. RSVP to reserve your spot and read about our visit here.

Here are our picks for great events and activities for children and families this weekend. Find more events for the whole week in Marin and beyond in our Family Events Calendar.

Friday, September 8

  • Breakfast with Enzo
    Sports Basement, San Francisco Presidio
    Friday, 10 & 11 am
    Enzo Garcia plays guitar, banjo, accordion, musical saw, jew's harp, enzotar, appalachian dulcimer, slide flute, percussion and more. He has been performing and recording professionally for over fifteen years, the last ten of which he has spent in the San Francisco Bay Area. Recommended for children 7 and under. Drop in any time. Cost: $7 per person additional child siblings under 7 months free. Lots of free parking too. For more info, call (415) 652-2474 or visit his website.
  • French Storytime (L'Heure du Conte)
    San Anselmo Library
    Friday, 11–11:30 am

    For children of all ages and their parent or caregiver. Talk, sing, read, and play together. Share books, stories, rhymes, music in French. No registration required. Parents/caregivers are expected to stay with children during all storytime sessions. Free. Location: 110 Tunstead Avenue, Council Chambers, San Anselmo. For more info, visit their website.
  • Picnics on the Plaza
    Town Hall Lawn, San Anselmo
    Friday, 5–8 pm

    The popular Picnics on the Plaza events feature music and family fun in downtown San Anselmo. Bring your picnic basket or buy food at the event. Sponsored by the San Anselmo Economic Development Committee. Location: 525 San Anselmo Avenue, Town Hall Lawn, San Anselmo. For more info, visit their website.
  • Parents' Night Out
    Marinwood Community Center, San Rafael
    Friday, 5–10 pm

    Drop off the kids and enjoy a night out! While you relax, the kids will be having fun with the Marinwood staff. Games, park time, arts and crafts, dinner and a movie at the end of the night! Activities include a toy room, dodgeball or just hanging out. Ages: at least 2 but less than 11. Cost: $25 per child. Register here. Location: 775 Miller Creek Road, San Rafael. For more info, visit their website.
  • Broadway Under the Stars Gala Celebration
    Jack London State Park, Glen Ellen
    Friday–Sunday, 5 pm
    Don’t miss this fast-selling, end of season celebration packed full of powerhouse performances, community tributes, sentimental reflections and more. Bring a picnic before the performance. The show begins at 7:30 pm. Tickets: $45–$149. Purchase tickets here. Location: 2400 London Ranch Road, Glen Ellen. For more info, visit their website.
  • Kids Night Out: Night at the Museum
    Rolling Hills Club, Novato
    Friday, 6–9:30 pm

    Some men are born great, others have greatness thrust upon them! At Rolling Hills, we know all our kids are great! Join us for a Dum Dum bubble gum blowing contest, Night Watchman Games, and “Night at the Museum Bingo”. This is a PG movie and may not be appropriate for all children. A pizza dinner will be served. Ages 5 and up
    $24  Members and $34 Guests. Register here. Location: 351 San Andreas Dr, Novato. For more info, visit their website.
  • Free Movies at Old Mill Park
    Mill Valley
    Friday, 8 pm (starts at dusk)

    Bring your family, blankets, low beach chairs, flashlights and picnics and enjoy this free movie in the park: Beauty and the Beast (live action). Location: 352 Throckmorton Avenue, Mill Valley. For more info, visit their website.

Our Favorite Homemade Apple Pie

September 7, 2017

apple pie After all our apple picking excursions to Chileno Valley Ranch, we decided to make our favorite apple pie. This is my go-to recipe for this treat. It's an adaptation of the recipe that used to be on the back of the box of Trader Joe's frozen pie crusts. I don't know what it is about it, but it makes what my family thinks it the best apple pie ever. I still usually use the Trader Joe's pie crusts for this, since they're really good quality and make for a lot less work. Feel free to make your own pie crusts or to use a different brand, though.

I made this pie with Mutsu apples from Chileno Valley Ranch, but any good baking apple, like Gravenstein or Granny Smith, will work equally well.

Ingredients

  • 3 pounds apples (about 6 medium), peeled, cored, and sliced
  • 1 package Trader Joe's pie crusts, thawed

Indoor Drop-in Activities for the Little Ones for Marin & Beyond

September 7, 2017

Indoor play

Looking for fun indoor play spaces for the little ones? There are several places to take the kids to get them out of the house and burn off all that extra energy, especially on a cold or rainy day. Here are a few ideas for fun indoor drop-in activities in Marin County and beyond:

Berkeley

  • Habitot Children's Museum
    2065 Kittredge Street, Berkeley
    (510) 647-1111
    Hours: Monday–Thursday, 9:30–12:30 pm & Friday–Saturday, 9:30–4:30 pm

    Discovery Museum for young children, toddlers and infants. Fun activities, hands on exhibits, arts & crafts, fun classes, music and much more. Cost:
    $10.00 children and adults, Monday–Thursday (free under 12 mo.) and $12 children and adults, Friday–Sunday. For more info, visit their website.

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