Tag Archives: San Diego

Checking Out The Carlsbad Flower Fields & Premium Outlets


I’m not sure if you’ve noticed, but I have been spending a lot of time up in Carlsbad lately.  Although I’ve lived in San Diego my whole life, I rarely got the chance to get to know the North County because when I was younger, it always seemed so far away.  That has definitely changed, and I was recently invited as a blogger to re-explore a couple of my favorite places in Carlsbad during a media day:  The Flower Fields and The Premium Outlets.  I remember once going to The Flower Fields with my dad because he was such a plantsman.  Then I went a few times after, most recently last year (post here).  But this was the first time I actually rode the tractor and toured the entire grounds of The Flower Fields in-depth, really learning about the family behind the beautiful gardens.  The Ecke Family currently owns the land and we had the pleasure of Paul Ecke III giving us the tour of his family’s farm.  There really is so much more to explore at The Flower Fields, as you can see in the pictures below.  The Flower Fields will be open until May 8, and you can purchase tickets here.

After exploring The Flower Fields, bloggers were treated to lunch at Blaze Pizza, then toured the Carlsbad Premium Outlets with Terri Mannes, General Manager and Janissa Reyes, Director of Marketing and Business Development, both of Carlsbad Premium Outlets.  Thank you to Noelle of Curator PR for the invite and to everyone at The Flower Fields and The Premium Outlets for a fun-filled day of exploring and shopping!


Fun Facts about The Flower Fields:

– There are over 70 million flowers!

– Most of the flowers in the main field are ranunculus, also known as the Persian Buttercup.

– Ranunculus are native to Asia and are normally a cold season plant.

– The seeds are kept in a 32 degrees cooler, then planted.


Our souvenir bouquets of beautiful ranunculus to take home!





Paul Ecke III mentioned they purchased all of the pieces in their Santa’s Playground from the original Santa’s Village in Arrowhead.  He had a bidding war with Paul Rubens (aka Pee Wee Herman) on one of the mushrooms!

Carlsbad Flower Fields 2016



Being silly with Laura of Laura Neuzeth at Santa’s Playground!


In addition to Santa’s Playground, kids can pan for treasures at The Carlsbad Mining Co!


We didn’t get a chance to try it, but I want to come back with my husband and son to take on the Sweet Pea Maze!



Events can be held at Ecke Family Barn, which has an additional seating area for an outdoor affair!



The Ecke Family are known for their poinsettia, grown beautifully in their greenhouse.




I’m sure it’s the influence of my dad, but orchids are one of my favorite flowers, and The Cymbidium Orchids Greenhouse had some gorgeous ones that I’m sure my father would have loved!


My humble attempt at emulating Anton Corbijn’s photographic style (blurry forefront, clear background).


Paul Ecke III, Angelica Banales of IMW Agency and grower Jess Williams of Mellano & Company, our hosts and tour guides at The Flower Fields.


Lunch c/o Blaze Pizza, which makes artisan pizzas from their established menu or you can have them create a custom pizza from their selection of toppings.  That blood orange lemonade is fantastic!


(Photo courtesy of Carlsbad Premium Outlets’ Twitter page)


All of the bloggers who attended that day, including some of my fellow San Diego Style Bloggers!


Somehow I always end up at Kate Spade when I shop at the Carlsbad Premium Outlets!


This was an awesome goodie bag!

(All photos taken by me, except where noted)

FTC Disclosure:  Bloggers were treated to a tour of The Flower Fields, and we received a gift card as a courtesy to enjoy the Carlsbad Premium Outlets, but not as compensation for this post.  Although I did receive a gift card, the opinions in this post are strictly my own.

A Fun Night Out: The Murder Mystery Company

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I’m always looking for and thinking of fun things to do with my friends and family that are bit out of the normal dinner or amusement park.  I recently had the opportunity to experience a night out with The Murder Mystery Company at The Old Spaghetti Factory in Downtown San Diego.  I had always heard about The Murder Mystery Company, but didn’t truly understand what exactly what it was about.  So I thought it would be a fun way to celebrate a date night out for my husband’s birthday!  The Murder Mystery Company hosts several events throughout San Diego and there are different themes.  The event we attended was “Midnight at the Masquerade” where guests are encouraged to don attire appropriate for the theme:

The rustle of silks and feathers under muted conversation was probably the last thing heard by the tragically and unexpectedly deceased at the Annual Billionaires Club Masquerade Ball. With a mystery under each feathery façade, unmasking the killer may be quite a challenge. It’s up to you to determine which partygoer is guilty, bring this crime to justice, and save the party!

Attend the Billionaires’ Club Annual Masquerade Ball and help get this soiree back on track by trading clues with your guests, gathering information, and solving the crime before the masked menace gets away! Evening wear, ball gowns, Venetian masks, suits, and tuxes are what to wear to this high class night of masks and murder. Get ready for a glamorous evening of mystery, intrigue and, murder.

There are several different types of tickets to purchase including General Admission and Early Access (the price differential allows earlier access).  We had the Gold Circle Access, which includes preferential seating, a “Mugshot Momento Set”, and 30 minutes early access.  All ticket levels include the show and a three course dinner (drinks not included).  We really liked our seats because we were right in the middle of the action, directly in the area where most of the improv takes place.

To have the most fun, you have to participate.  Each table has a person who will be directly involved in the action, meaning they will play an actual character in the mystery that will need to be solved by the end of the evening.  There are books at each table with clues for your table’s character, and the “money” at each table will be used to purchase clues from other tables to help solve the mystery.  Tables have “investigation” time where your table can interact with any other table or their characters, and each table has a scribe who will ensure your clues are documented.  At the end, all tables turn in their “whodunit”, and the winning table gets bragging rights for solving the mystery.

We really enjoyed the direct involvement of the improv actors, who never break character throughout the performance.  As I mentioned previously, you will have the most fun if you are active with your table, and get up and really roam around to get the definitive clues you need to solve the mystery.  I won’t give away too much because it’s really something that you have to enjoy for yourself.  Deon and I already know from this experience that it makes for a great date night, but I think it would make for a great “Girls/Guys Night Out” or even family night if you have kids who are old enough to participate.  I’ve included some pictures from the evening, including our “mugshots”.  Thank you to The Murder Mystery Company for adding a great alternative for a night out in San Diego!

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Are you ready to play?

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The awesome improv cast of The Murder Mystery Company!

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How do you like these mugs?

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I wore my fabulous vintage opera coat that I bought from La Femme Chic Consignment Boutique!

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FTC Disclosure:  I received complementary Gold Circle passes to attend a show.  Although I did receive complementary passes as a courtesy, the opinions in this post are strictly my own.

Spread Inspiration: #LiveAGreatStory


There are moments where I become overwhelmed thinking about life and how what we do everyday affects others.  I’ve been listening to a lot of John Mayer lately, and moments like that make me think of the song Bigger Than My Body.  As a mother, I know everything I do and say affects my son.  He looks to me and my husband for guidance, and I want to inspire him to do great things, because this is the life you get, so live it in the best way you can.  We all have something important to say, and we should all remember that as unique individuals, we can inspire by telling our stories.

Live A Great Story is a San Diego based apparel company that aims to “Spread Inspiration” through its clothing and create a movement.  A percentage of their profits for their tanks and tees goes towards their “Story Fund”, reinvesting in those choosing to make a difference in their communities.

In addition to their line of clothing, Live A Great Story also has sticker and button packs to help spread inspiration anywhere and everywhere.  For Any Second Now readers, they’ve created a special discount code: by entering the promo code ANY2NDNOW at check out you will receive a 30% discount when purchasing through www.liveagreatstory.com.

Be bigger than your body and get out there.  Remember there is a whole world may not yet know your story, so make it a great one!




Outfit: Live A Great Story tank top (c/o); Say What? cardigan; Madewell jeggings; ASOS Dark Star sneakers; Kipling backpack; Unknown brand fedora; “Exciter” Depeche Mode necklace by Little Treasures by Mir; Warby Parker “Simone” in Tea Rose Fade


Cousins + sisters + sisters-in-law = family

FTC Disclosure:  I received product and was asked to review the product in return.  Although I did receive product, the opinions in this post are strictly my own.

Girls Night Out With Aall In Limo & Duran Duran!

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Don’t we all have that group of friends we can do anything with?  For me, it’s my sister, my cousin Regi and best friend Janice.  They were all in my wedding, and we have gone to many nights out together, and most of them have been concerts.  Imagine my delight to be able to surprise my girls with a limousine ride to see Duran Duran in concert, courtesy of Aall In Limo & Party Bus!  Originally, there was to be six of us going, but sadly my friends Kim & Ian were not able to come, due to a mix up with their tickets.  So they left the bottles of champagne for us enjoy, which we did.  The limo was fully stocked with glasses and cold water for the ride there and back.  Our driver, Mike, was so awesome, ensuring he had a designated place for us to meet up at the end of the show.  Already excited for the concert, my girls and I agree that going to a show like this is definitely our favorite way to travel.  Thank you again Aall In Limo & Party Bus for a memorable night!


Ready for our girls night out!


Janice and Regi had no idea we would travel to see our favorite band in such style!


A little pre-concert music in the limo because we were able to plug in our cell phones directly to their stereo system!


Clean Bandit opened for Duran Duran, and they were great!


A shot during “Pressure Off”


“Rio” anyone?!  It goes without saying, Duran Duran sounded absolutely amazing in concert! 

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The obligatory “concert selfie”!  I’m wearing the “DELETE” shirt by Patty Palazzo and her brand, Punk Masters (check out the many shots of Duran Duran in her shirts here).


With my sister, Rholnna, in post concert bliss.  We finished off the champagne (and chased it with water).  I recorded “Hungry Like The Wolf” live and included the set list below.

FTC Disclosure:  I received a service and was asked to review the service in return.  Although I did receive the service as a courtesy, the opinions in this post are strictly my own.

DAISO Japan’s Newest San Diego Store

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I held a contest recently to win a deluxe gift bag in celebration of the grand opening of DAISO Japan’s newest San Diego location in Kearny Mesa (original post here).  Here are the pictures of when I attended the event with my good friend Audrey.  Needless to say, we absolutely adored the new location, marveling at its size and amount of product!

Also, if you haven’t looked back on my first post about the contest, I had to select a different winner because the original winner did not pick up the gift bag at the grand opening event after being notified.  The new winner is Judy, and her prize was just sent and is now on its way to her!

In the meantime, if you haven’t gone to one yet, I highly recommend going to a DAISO Japan and exploring $1.50 heaven, cheers!

IMG_7919 (2) (1280x1280)Taiko Drummers!

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IMG_7924 (2) (1280x960)So. LARGE!

IMG_7926 (2) (1280x1280)Cute little succulents, for a great price!

IMG_7938 (2) (1280x1280)Is it possible for me to try them all??

IMG_7934 (2) (960x1280)What a crazy line to the register!

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IMG_7929 - Copy (1280x960)Pocky galore!

DAISO collage 1Thank you DAISO Japan for inviting me to your wonderful grand opening and thank you SO much for my very own lovely gift bag!

FTC Disclosure:  I received a gift as a thank you for holding a contest and for attending the grand opening, but not for the post.  Although I did receive a gift, the opinions in this post are strictly my own.

DAISO Japan Grand Opening in Kearny Mesa & Deluxe Goodie Bag Giveaway!

Daiso_Orange_FaceI’m SO excited!  DAISO Japan is opening a new location in Kearny Mesa, and they have a grand opening celebration happening September 12th & 13th, starting at 10am!  If you are unfamiliar with DAISO Japan, they are a bright and cheerful retail store who’s mission is to help customers “find surprises and fun!”  Their stores are filled with lots of Japanese based items where most of the prices start at $1.50.  I’ve been to the Mira Mesa location more times than I care to count, and I can easily lose track of time because they have so many adorable yet useful items.

IMG_1794 - Copy (960x1280)Inside of the DAISO Japan Mira Mesa location, pretty isn’t it?

In addition to goodie bags for the first 100 customers who present a receipt for that weekend and other fantastic prizes DAISO Japan is giving away during their grand opening, I’m also giving away a deluxe DAISO Japan goodie bag filled with items from their store to one lucky local Any Second Now reader, who will receive their prize at the grand opening!


  • Input your information in the Rafflecopter widget in this post for one entry.
  • For an additional entry, post a blog comment in the “Comments” section below.

The winner will be chosen at random and announced on this blog on September 9th. 

Cheers and good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

(Edited to add on 9/22/2015:  For transparency, the original winner, Ronald D. did not respond to the initial and subsequent emails sent, and did not pick up his prize at the grand opening. I randomly selected another winner and have contacted Judy L. as the new winner!)

Girls Night Out with Sassy City Chicks August 12!

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(I posted this on San Diego Style Bloggers, and wanted to post it here as well, since it’s this Wednesday!)
Looking for something to do on Wednesday night with your girls?  Check out Sassy City Chicks Girls Night Out event on August 12, 2015.  Here’s the best part: we have 25 tickets to give away!  It’s first come, first served so follow these instructions below to get your complimentary ticket!
Redeem a ticket by using the code SHOPSD
Click on the SAN DIEGO button and enter the code.
A complimentary ticket option will then appear!
August 12, 2015
Parq Restaurant & Nightclub
615 Broadway
San Diego, CA 92101