Cuisine · DIY · Frugal Frances · Lifestyle · Mommy & Me · Willow & Wonder

Lately…enjoying simple pleasures!


Let’s get to some simple fun on the central coast of CA, playful ideas, and tips for camping!  Now, most of my readers are not even in the United States, so please take what you can from our daily excursions as inspiration for things that might be near your home.  The point really is to delve into your child-like spirit and find simple pleasures that create a fun escape.

We’ve been going to the beach lately and our all time favorite is Montana De Oro, for the sand dunes and pristine aspects.  I cannot emphasize it enough.  My favorite are the beaches that drop off from the bluffs hike.

We took her mermaid crown to feel a little more mystical at the beach!!



Our latest camping trip was not really noteworthy to state where we went but what we did rather.  We made banana smores – hola, this was divine.  I really enjoyed spicing-up an oldie.  We cut the banana down the middle, stuffed it with chocolate chips, and marshmallows and wrapped it up in a piece of foil.  Go ahead and throw it in the fire and let it get hot and melt.  Then scoop it out onto a graham cracker.  Smoosh it together.  It was delicious!!  I was toying with doing a regular smore with peanut butter too but didn’t.  Try it!


We bought 3 frisbies and played several rounds of frisby golf.  Our daughter would pick a tree or anything decided ahead of time, and we would keep track on a score card how long it took to hit it. Pretty fun.  Kinda sad when mommy’s frisby went in every which direction opposite the target.  Sheesh.  That is not an easy game, mind you.


We actually made a fire from collected wood only!  I was impressed this worked so well.  This was a great activity for our little one.  She collected so much wood.  She loves to hunt for things.  I was astonished that we never really do this and always buy wood.  I guess it depends where you go but finding it was so much more fun!


Leaf rubbing was really fun and watercoloring is my new favorite thing to do in nature.  Inspired by the easels and umbrellas all over the Joshua Tree National Parks with artists at each station.  We gathered some leaves, pealed our crayon labels off and rubbed the leafs underneath the papers.  It was really fun to get all that detail so fast.  Change colors per leaf and it makes for a really pretty picture.



Here’s another way we’ve been keeping busy.  A little game of find the fish in a bubble bath.  Making fancy smoothies with oats, peanut butter, tropical fruit, chia seeds and almond milk for lunch.  Makes a hot day fun for lunch.  Hot chocolat chaud for a special treat with marshmallows!  Changing up the dollhouse scene and moving to dining room chairs and odd places instead.  And, our favorite…going on our “adventure walks” collecting hickory nuts, acorns, pink pepper, twigs and birch bark for upcoming craft projects!!!  We need to rebuild our inventory!  Grab a bag or basket and get your kid collecting things in your neighborhood.  It makes a nice walk even more fun with a goal in mind.  Or write a list and turn it into a scavanger hunt instead.

And finally, a trip to the Madonna Inn just for cake and some pink pics!  Don’t order the pink champagne cake and expect it to be pink.  It’s not.  LOL.  I heard the chocolate forest is divine!  This place is full of fun gifts and the Madonna Inn Champagne is fabulous.  A slice of cake in the Copper Cafe is special and fun for a little one.  Enjoy!




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