BEST OF: Best Places For A Tea Party in Southern California (Revisited)


Mom, are you looking for a unique location to spend quality time with your daughter?  Or a fashionable venue to host your child’s birthday party or a friend’s baby or bridal shower?  Then this exhaustive list of teashops throughout Southern California, from Santa Barbara to San Diego, will tickle your fancy!


St. Luke’s Episcopal Church

Every fall, St. Luke’s offers a high tea in their Tea Room during their annual brass rubbings event. The tea which includes traditional English teas, complete with sweets and savories to accompany your group reservation. Two public tea dates are available for groups of less than 10. Reservations are required in advance and includes a docent talk and brass rubbing.

Vintage Tea

Elise’s Tea Room -

The Tea Room @ The Queen Mary -


Two A Tea, Glendora –

Nestled in the foothills on a quiet tree lined street, Two A Tea has been called ‘Glendora’s Best Kept Secret.’ Old world Victorian charm in sunny Southern California. Since opening our doors in December 2004, Two A Tea has become a haven of rest and relaxation for family, friends, and tea lovers alike. We serve lunch and afternoon tea Wednesday through Saturday from 11am-5pm and Sunday from Noon – 5pm.

The High Tea Cottage, Woodland Hills

Enchanted Rose Tea Parlour, San Dimas –

Chado Tea Room @ The Japanese American National Museum, Los Angeles –


McKenna’s Tea Cottage, Seal

McKenna’s Tea Cottage is a quaint upscale tea room in the heart of Old Town Seal Beach, California. We serve tea sandwiches, delicious scones, salads, soups and more. Our McKenna’s Special Blend tea is out of this world. We serve over 38 specialty tea. There is something for everyone’s liking.

The Tea House On Los Rios, San Juan Capistrano –

Sussex Teapot, Garden Grove –

Tranquil Tea Lounge, Fullerton –

Paris In A Cup, Orange –

Little Prince Kid’s Café, Buena Park –

The Spring Tea Garden, Fullerton –

Coffee, Tea & Tulips, Mission Viejo –

Tea & Teacups, Yorba Linda –


Flour & Tea –

Flour + Tea is a bakery and tea house. We have Asian inspired Euro/American breads, as well as mixed teas and coffees. We also have cakes and desserts!

The Rose Garden Tea Room and Café @ The Huntington

Rose Tea Garden

Tea Rose

Scarlet Tea Room & Fine


Tea & Tiaras @ The Mission Inn, Riverside –

Aspiring princesses between the ages of 3 and 12 years old will feel like royalty for a day at The Mission Inn Hotel & Spa. Our regal offerings start with a sparkling Apple Cider welcome and a Princess Afternoon Tea. The lady-in-waiting can enjoy Afternoon Tea with a grand view of the beautiful Spanish Patio.  And what would a princess be without a Tiara? Delectable sandwiches, freshly baked scones with jam, hot cocoa, orange floats, and a range of princess-friendly delicate pastries and sweet confections from Casey’s Cupcakes® are served.  Every Third Saturday of the Month until October 18, 2014.

Barbara’s Tea House, Rancho Cucamonga –

British Emporium, Upland –


The Tea Pavilion @ The Japanese Friendship Garden, San Diego –

The Tea Pavilion at the Japanese Friendship Garden serves traditional Japanese green tea, herbal and specialty teas as well as sushi, Japanese noodles, rice bowls, miso soup, salads, and snacks. Unique imported food, beverages, and gifts, as well as imported bulk teas are available for purchase.

Cobblestone Cottage Teashoppe, Alpine –

The Aubrey Rose Tea Room, La Mesa –

My Cup of Tea Unique Gifts, Chula Vista –

Tea Upon Chatsworth, Point Loma –

Coral Tree Tea House, Downtown San Diego –

The San Diego House, San Diego –

Shakespeare’s Corner Shoppe & Afternoon Tea, San Diego –

Julian Tea, Julian –



All Things Tea, Camarillo –

Tranquility Tea Room, Thousand Oaks –


Olivia’s Tea House in Lomita, Tustin, Santa Clarita, Thousand Oaks, Hollywood and Upland –

Happy Field Tripping,


© Jilleen Butler and SoCal Field Trips, 2013 – Current. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Jilleen Butler and SoCal Field Trips with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Guess Who Likes The Guess Who Book Series by Howard Eisenberg?

Guess Who Likes The Guess Who Book Series

by Howard Eisenberg?


Recently we received the very entertaining and amusing Guess Who Book Series by Howard Eisenberg.  The Guess Who Book Series is based upon original poems that author Howard Eisenberg wrote to his grandchildren on postcards while traveling overseas in 1989.

Now, published 25 years later by Mascot Books, Guess Who Zoo has been released simultaneously with the more recently-written Guess Who Farm and Guess Who Neighborhood in a new interactive series for children.  The trio is designed for children 3-6 as “fun that educates” — encouraging vocabulary building and reading and writing skills as well as introductions to science, social studies, and the  arts.  The books begin with charming rhymed stories followed by whimsical interactive poems with clues in every line and the last word –  usually the animal’s name – left blank.  Two of the books are augmented by a fascinating-facts section entitled If Animals Could Talk.

As a parent, I enjoyed reading the Guess Who Book Series, because I could easily adjust the reading level according to each of my children’s abilities.  For example, Field Trip Girl is just starting to learn to read through the use of Bob Books and  When I read Guess Who Zoo to her I picked out the sight words that she already knew and had her read them to me.  I also shortened each page a bit.


In Guess Who Zoo, Monkey steals the keys from a napping Zookeeper and releases all the animals.  The book expands a Guess Who Zoo CD that won a Parent’s Choice Award and a Parenting Magazine Pick.

A Sample From the Guess Who Zoo:








YOU’LL KNOW I’M THE _________.

Guess Who Zoo is the perfect book to read over the course of a few days with a young child.  It also makes for a great addition to any preschool or lower elementary school library.

Now with Field Trip Boy it was a whole different story!  When the Guess Who Book Series arrived, Field Trip Boy sat down and read the entire Guess Who Zoo book in 15 minutes.  He is 7 years old and is a great reader.  He reads approximately at a 4th grade level.  Field Trip Boy liked Guess Who Zoo the best because it was a little bit harder to guess the animals than in the other books.

Personally, I enjoyed reading Guess Who Farm because the poetry was cute and catchy.  It reminded me of when I use to read Dr. Seuss books with my parents when I was a child.  In Guess Who Farm, Young Mac (Old MacDonald’s son) longs for a farm of his own, but when a trailer load of animals arrives they refuse to leave the truck until he guess their names. Young Mac, a terrible guesser, implores young readers to help him start his farm.

In Guess Who Neighborhood, the fun begins for two totally bored children when their house-hunting parents discover a unique neighborhood in which the kids get to guess a Snowman, a Playground, a Nanny, and even a Skunk.  Guess Who Neighborhood goes well with any preschool or kindergarten community workers curriculum.


The next time you think about purchasing a new book for your little one, consider one of the Guess Who Series books by Howard Eisenberg.  It will definitely make your child chuckle and put a smile on their face.

Happy Field Tripping,


Disclosure: We received a complimentary set of Guess Who books to help facilitate this post.  All opinions are our own.

Community “Pumpkin Glow” Event at Pavilion Park in Irvine on 10/25!

Community “Pumpkin Glow” Event at Pavilion Park in Irvine

A Continuous Line of Carved Pumpkins Will Aim to Break a Guinness World Record!

Pumpkin Glow Graphic

When I received the news about an upcoming pumpkin celebration taking place in Irvine next weekend I jumped for joy!  

I love pumpkins!  Everything pumpkins.  So much so that I have pumpkin decorations all over my house right now in preparation for our Annual Harvest Party next month.  Over 50 people come and celebrate the fall harvest (apples, pumpkins, squash, pears, etc) with us.  No, we are not farmers, but sometimes I feel like we are during this time of year!

On Thanksgiving I also make homemade pumpkin pies.  It has become a family tradition now.  I buy the whole pumpkin, carve it, bake it, puree it and then make pies out of it.  Usually the entire process takes me a few days, but it is worth every bite.  Before I made my own pumpkin pies I didn’t particularly like them.  But now, add a little whipped cream and watch out.   I might just eat the entire pie!

On Saturday, October 25 from 6-9 p.m., thousands of glowing pumpkins, carved by the community, will illuminate Pavilion Park in Irvine at the Great Park Neighborhoods first-ever “Pumpkin Glow.”   This new legacy event is the first of its kind for Orange County too.  It will feature 1,500 carved and sculpted pumpkins, creating an amazing, illuminated outdoor pumpkin artwork display.

Pumpkin Glow is a unique, fun, and family-friendly event that brings the community together for a magical autumn evening. Music and refreshments will be available on the Pavilion Park Visitor Terrace, along with expert pumpkin sculptor Scott Gerber who will entertain visitors with live carving demonstrations.

Adding to the excitement of the night will be the Pumpkin Glow sculpture competition, featuring pumpkin-related art. Guests can vote for their favorite sculpture and the top three vote-getters will be awarded prizes.

People of all ages can contribute to Pumpkin Glow by showing off their carving skills at the Pavilion Park “Pumpkin CarveOff” on Friday, October 24 from 8:30 am to 6 pm. Their pumpkins will be placed on display during Pumpkin Glow. In addition, local schools have been invited to carve pumpkins for the Pumpkin Glow’s attempt to break a Guinness World Record for the longest line of carved pumpkins, which currently stands at 1,301.

My family plans on attending The Pumpkin Glow event next weekend.  Do you?  If so, give us a shout out in the comment section below.  We always enjoy meeting SoCal Field Trips readers!

For more information about the community Pumpkin Glow event, how to register or to donate a carved pumpkin for Pumpkin Glow, please visit here.

Happy Pumpkin Carving!


Disclosure: This post is for informational purposes only.  All opinions are our own.  Images used by permission from GPN.


A Field Trip to the Old Orange County Courthouse in Santa Ana, plus a new California Indian exhibit!

A Field Trip To The Old Orange County Courthouse in Santa Ana!

Plus A New Exhibit – Seaweed, Salmon And Manzanita Cider: A California Indian Feast

Courthouse 12

Last winter I set up a field trip for a group of students to the Old Orange County Courthouse in Santa Ana.  It is Southern California’s oldest courthouse.  The courthouse, formerly known as the Santa Ana County Courthouse, is a Romanesque Revival building that first opened in September 1901 and is located in Santa Ana’s Historic Downtown District.  The building is also on the National Register of Historic places and is a State of California Historic Landmark.

Our tour guide named Brad, a Historic Resource Specialist, was very informative and wonderful with our kids.

Courthouse 4

Here we are at the cannons on display out front of the courthouse.  They serve as a memorial for Orange County Veterans. The cannon on the left is from the Korean War and the cannon on the right is a German cannon that soldiers from Orange County captured during WWI.

Couthouse 1

Once inside we got a personal tour of the courthouse.

Courthouse 13

Courthouse 2

Courtyard 3

Brad gave us this handy-dandy guide about the different types of artifacts that are on display in the courthouse.

Courthouse 5

The court reporter’s office and the equipment that they use to use to transcribe old court cases on was very impressive.

Courthouse 7

The judge’s chambers.

Courthouse 9

The jury room.

Courthouse 11

The historic courthouse hosts a variety of exhibitions throughout the year.  When we were there they had The Dairies of Orange County on display.

Courthouse 8

A new exhibit opens on October 27 at The Old Orange County Courthouse called Seaweed, Salmon, and Manzanita Cider: A California Indian Feast!

It is a statewide traveling exhibition from the Grace Hudson Museum and Exhibit Envoy filled with historic and contemporary photographs, food specimens, memoirs, and recipes.

The exhibit, which runs from Oct. 27 and through Dec. 20, 2014, features foods important in the lives of Native Californians including fish, shellfish, seaweed, meat, vegetables, berries, fruits, flowers, nuts, seeds and salt.   This delicious look at Native foods is based on the Heyday Books publication “Seaweed, Salmon, and Manzanita Cider: A California Indian Feast” by Margaret Dubin and Sara-Larus Tolley (2008), a delightful and sometimes startling compendium of Native American cuisine.

Sherrie Smith-Ferri, Director of the Grace Hudson Museum in Ukiah, curated this exhibition in consultation with her aunt, Kathleen Rose Smith, a California Indian artist and a member of the Coast Miwok and Dry Creek Pomo tribes.

The book and the exhibit contain harvesting instructions and recipes for many delicious foods, including Huckleberry Bread, Pine Nut Soup, Rose Hip or Elderberry Syrup, Peppernut Balls, and Ingeniously Roasted Barnacles.

The traveling exhibition includes historic and contemporary California Indian artifacts used to hunt, gather and process California Indian native foods; historic and contemporary framed photographs of California Indian peoples gathering, preparing, and enjoying traditional food; large format framed contemporary photographs of California Indian food resources; preserved or processed examples of types of California Indian foods; and informative text panels.

Tear-off recipe pads will also be available, allowing visitors to take home some ways to enjoy California Indian foods.

Courthouse 10

Here are a few tips when planning a visit to the Old Orange County Courthouse:

1. The field trip is FREE!

2. The courthouse can only accommodate a maximum of 30 people at a time.

3. Strollers are not allowed.

4. The courthouse’s main parking lot out back only takes quarters, plus you can only put in an hour at a time.  Therefore, you have to go back out and refill the meter in the middle of the field trip.   But there is a parking structure on Broadway about two blocks from the courthouse in the art district and it only costs $1 an hour and caps at $7.  That’s a much better deal!

Happy Field Tripping,


Disclosure:  This post is for informational purposes only and was facilitated with the help of Windi Eklund.  All opinions are our own.

4 Family Friendly Halloween Simon Mall Events Throughout The Southland!

4 Family Friendly Halloween

Simon Mall Events

Throughout The Southland!

Mall #2

Back in the day, when I was a child, we did not have all the cool Halloween festivities that our children have today.  Instead, my mom would buy me a new Halloween costume to parade around in at school and then take us trick-or-treating later that night.  That was it.  I was out cold and in bed by 8:30 pm!

These days communities across the southland host all sorts of fantastic family friendly Halloween events.  From traditional trick-or-treating to hometown Halloween celebrations to visiting your local pumpkin patch, the choice is yours.

This year several Simon upscale shopping centers throughout Southern California are hosting Halloween events specifically for children!   Plus if you sign your child up or already a member of the Simon Kidgits Club, your kiddos will get extra goodies too!

The Simon Kidgits Club is a fun and informative program that focuses on health, wellness, education, safety and entertainment for children ages 3-8. Since 2003, the Simon Kidgits Club has kept children and parents alike amused with various events and activities while providing incentives for club members, such as special offers, rewards and games.  Simon Kidgits Club members receive a variety of goodies, including a Simon Kidgits Club T-shirt, membership card, birthday card and gift, discounts and scheduled activities. For more information about the Simon Kidgits Club, visit

This year’s mall events include:

The Shops at Montebello

Kidgits Halloween Event, Saturday, October 18, from noon to 1:30 p.m. in Center Court.

The Shops at Montebello’s Kidgits Halloween event will have several activity stations and games for children to enjoy, including a spooktacular costume contest for all the little ghouls, goblins and boo’tiful princesses in attendance.

The top three costumes will receive a Halloween-themed gift basket filled with candy, treats and prizes.  In addition to the basket, first place will receive four tickets to Knott’s Berry Farm, while second place will take home a $40 Gymboree Gift Card.

The first 200 children in attendance at the Halloween Kidgits event will be invited to decorate and take home their very own pumpkins.  Radio Disney will provide fun decorations such as pipe cleaners, stickers and markers, in addition to providing entertainment and prize giveaways.

Mall #3

The Shops at Montebello will also host a Trick-or-Treat with participating retailers on Halloween night, Friday, October 31 from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. The center will be giving away large size candy bars, one per person, while supplies last.

Del Amo Fashion Center, Torrance

Kidgits Halloween Spooktacular event, Saturday, October 25 from 10 a.m. to noon in JoAnn’s Court.

“Del Amo Fashion Center is the perfect place for families looking for Halloween entertainment in a fun, safe community environment,” said Lindsay Hermance, Director of Marketing and Business Development at Del Amo Fashion Center. Whether kids want to show off their new costume or take home some Halloween-themed crafts, there is an activity here for every ghost, witch, princess and werewolf. This Halloween event is a great addition to our year-long Simon Kidgits Club programs.”

Prior to the Halloween Spooktacular, check out The Book of Life” Halloween carnival on Saturday, October 11 in honor of the upcoming 3D animated comedy movie.  The free family event will be held in Del Amo Fashion Center’s Outdoor Village from noon to 2 p.m. and will feature face painting, special arts and crafts, carnival food and snacks, giveaways, and more. All activities are available while supplies last, and costumes are welcome.

You can also visit the Bob and Joanne Cottone and Sons Pumpkin Patch, open October 10 through October 30, at 21573 Madrona Avenue, located at Del Amo Fashion Center next to Black Angus Restaurant.  The pumpkin patch also features bounce houses, a petting zoo, pony rides and, of course, pumpkins of all shapes and sizes.

The Shops at Mission Viejo

Halloween Spooktacular!  Kidgits event, Saturday, October 25 from 10 a.m. to noon on the upper level, near the Play Area.

Mall #1

The Shops at Mission Viejo will have several Halloween activity stations and games for children to enjoy, including cookie decorating, Halloween-inspired crafts, and more.  Simon Kidgits Club members will receive special goodies, while supplies last.

Brea Mall

Kidgits Halloween Safe Trick-or-Treat event, Friday, October 31, from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. on the center’s lower level in Center Court.

The Brea Mall will offer Orange County-area children a safe place to take part in Halloween activities as the Simon Kidgits Club® presents its annual Halloween event.  There will be several activity stations and games for children to enjoy, including Trick-or-Treating throughout the mall with participating retailers, and Halloween-inspired crafts and activities.

Plus families can get a free downloadable app called The Bully Free Zone.  The Bully Free Zone is an app released by Captain McFinn and features fun activities, a new McFinn cartoon, and a chance for families to win a free iPad Air.

Captain McFinn promotes social and emotional development in children through live virtual playdates, online games, apps and resources for parents and teachers.

To find a local mall event in your area please visit Simon’s website.

Happy Halloween!


Disclosure: This post is for informational purposes only.  All opinions are our own.  All images used by permission from Simon.