Happy Holidays!! I have heard a lot of friends and family talking about how this time of year is their favorite time of year, and I always ask them why. Answers range from vacation from school, cozy mornings spent in pajamas, holiday-movie marathons, delicious food and lots of laughter. But when I tried to figure out why I have always enjoyed this time, I realized that it has always been a time in my life when I have gotten closer with my family.

As a kid, we would wake up each morning excited about the adventure my mother would have in store for us: tea downtown in Union Square, bike riding in Golden Gate Park or decorating around the house. My mother grew up in San Francisco, so she would always take us to do her favorite childhood holiday activities. This is my first year as a new mom and my daughter will be 6 months in December, and I cannot wait for family adventures with all three generations.

Here are some of the holiday activities that are happening in the bay area the next couple of weeks. I am still trying to figure out a way to fit them all into our schedule! Enjoy!


  • Free Admission to California State Parks after Thanksgiving. The new trend is to get outside instead of rushing to the superstores for Black Friday. As such, 49 California State Parks are offering free admission. Is this Green Friday going to be a new trend? I hope so!
  • Family Tennis Match. This might not feel so holiday at first, but starting a new tradition of an athletic competition is a family favorite. We love to play tennis and croquet and we cannot help but let our competitive spirit run wild.
  • Ballet Performance. Regardless of their age, children will love the Nutcracker performances for it’s delightful and magical story. Bay area ballet companies include San Francisco Ballet and Ballet San Jose. For a fun twist on holiday ballet you can check out Mark Morris’ “Hard Nut” at Berkeley Rep or Smuin Ballet’s Christmas performance.
  • Ghirardelli Square Christmas Tree Lighting and Menorah Lighting. Visit Ghirardelli Square to see the cute shops, sip on some hot chocolate and see the Christmas Tree Lighting on November 27 and the Menorah Lighting on December 8. Both events are free!

Family Winter Activities in San Francisco // blog.rightstart.com

  • Widmer World Christmas Light Display. This Christmas display will absolutely knock your socks off! It is located in Pleasanton and is almost an acre of Christmas lights!! Open from 6-9pm December 1-31, it is the top activity on my list!

Happy Holidays to all of the Right Start families! Whether, like me,  you are celebrating your first holiday season with a little one or your 10th, enjoy this special time to be with those you love!

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