Ruby’s Diner

 

Lunch at Ruby’s Diner was amazing. There were four of us, three adults and one child and we all enjoyed our meal. I ordered the Super Ruby. It was a hamburger with cheese, tomato, avocado and Ruby Sauce (I got it without the sauce). It came on a cheese dusted sour dough bread with endless fries. I can’t have the fries so I was able to substitute for fresh fruit. The hamburger was juicy and melted in my mouth.

 

Other people in the group ordered fried fish or shrimp. They said it was delicious and a perfect match for a day at the beach.  Both came with endless fries and coleslaw. The coleslaw was a bit dry for my taste but other than that the meal was great. The meal was so filling that no one ordered the extra frys and we all left feeling satisfied. The portion sizes were very quite large. My little one is boring and got the macaroni and cheese with grapes, she liked it. There were a lot of different options and we enjoyed our meal. The price was reasonable, it was about $15 each for the adults, and we felt we got our moneys worth.  The downside of the restaurant would have to be the fact that there is no restroom, so if you have to take your child in the middle of eating you have to walk all the way back to the park area at the beginning of the pier. It is a long walk! The inside seating was limited and quite cramped, but that turned out to be a good thing. We ate outside and enjoyed it.  The best part was the view we saw while we ate. It was breathtaking!

Balboa Island

 

We finally went on our first outing of the summer to Balboa Island. It is located in Newport beach and is a nice area to walk around.

Balboa is a wonderful area in New Port Beach CA. There is so much to do and explore.
When we got to Balboa we parked in the parking lot. It is a metered lot that charges $1.50 an hour for parking. We didn’t have to pay though because we have a handicap placard. Then we stopped off at the restroom before starting our day. I have to say that the restrooms were among the cleanest public restrooms that I have ever seen. We went to the fun zone and our first stop was the nautical museum. It has three buildings, two of which are free to look at, the other one costs a small fee. I don’t remember the exact price but four of us got in for less than $20.

 

The two free buildings had a lot of neat boats to look at and were very interesting. We have come a long way in boat making over the years. There were paintings and models to look at as well as a few videos to watch.



There was an area devoted to a resident from Balboa who had competed in the paralimpics in sailing. It was inspirational. There was a sail with all kinds of signatures, and a sign was posted for people to sign the sail and put their dreams. My little one liked that idea and added her dream to the sail.

 
The building that cost to get in had an area that showed how beach music has changed over the years, a replica of the largest fish ever caught, a submarine you could pretend to drive,a touch tank and more. I think my little one learned a lot and had fun. She loved the touch tank and the gentleman working at the museum was talking to her about the different animals in the tank. She asked a lot of questions and then talked about the animals the rest of the day.

After the museum we looked in a few of the shops. My little one got some ice cream and my mom got a chocolate dipped frozen banana, they both said that they were very good. Then we went window shopping.  The shops had a lot of beach themed items but I felt they were a bit over priced. It was fun to look at the different shops and see the different things that could be made out of sea shells. Then we went on the Ferris wheel. The cost was $3 each, which I thought was a little high, but after the ride I think it was worth it. This feriswheel doesn’t just go around once or twice it goes around 25 times. It was a nice long ride and the scenery was beautiful. The seats were a little on the small side but I was able to fit.

After our ride we decided to get some lunch. We took the long walk to the end of the Balboa pier and ate at Ruby’s Diner. I will go into more detail about lunch in another post. Lunch was good. After lunch we continued to look through the shops and then decided to rest while my little one played on the playground. It was a nice area with slides, swings, monkey bars and an awesome jungle gym. My little one loved talking with other kids and playing. She climbed to the top of the jungle gym a few times and overall, she had a blast. 











After the playground it was time for our sunset cruise. The night before our trip I found a deal online that would let us take the 90 minute cruise for only $10 per adult and $6 per child. This cruise was well worth the price. It started at 7pm. It was a little breezy but the weather was still nice.
The views were amazing. We were able to see some sea lions, and beautiful views of the homes around Balboa. The water was a little rough so the ride was fun, I even got splashed a little. The waves were choppy which made the experience even more memorable. I was able to get a few nice pictures.
 
The day at Balboa was a lot of fun. It was not too hot and we were able to take time and explore. I would recommend taking a trip down there if you are able. There is of course the option to swim as well, but my foot problem doesn’t allow me to walk on sand, so I can’t swim as of now.

Ice Cream

 

 

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This ice cream maker has made summer a lot easier!

One of the many foods that usually contains some sort of corn is ice cream. It usually has corn syrup, so I just didn’t eat any. But….. my wonderful friend bought me the Hamilton Beach 1.5 Quart Ice Cream Maker for my birthday. I used it for the first time yesterday and was amazed.

It is very simple to use and works very quickly. The box says it makes ice cream in 25 to 40 minutes. I did feel that this statement was a little misleading. You have to put one part of the ice cream maker in the freezer for 24 hours before use and all of the recipes they provide require you to chill the mixture in the refrigerator for 24 hours before you can make it. However once everything is frozen and chilled I had ice cream in less than 20 minutes. You just pour the mix in, and turn the machine on. It doesn’t need any rock salt or special ingredients. The ice cream had a good flavor, held its’ shape, and tasted far better than any ice cream I have ever bought at a store. It only makes a quart of ice cream, and the ice cream maker needs to be frozen each time it is used, but it is a perfect fit in my opinion. It cleaned up nicely, and I can’t wait to experiment and try new flavors. If you are looking for a simple to use ice cream maker, check this one out!

Pirate’s Dinner Adventure

My little one will be turning 9 in just a few days. This year we decided to take her to the Pirates Dinner Adventure, in Buena Park CA. We have been there two times before and they still did not disappoint. A group of six of us attended the 7:30 show on Friday 4-27. The show is a dinner show, but the experience actually starts about two hours before the real show. We got to the theatre at about 5:15 because the traffic was unusually light. We were the second group in line and waited for the box office to open at 5:30. When it did we gave our name and were assigned to the purple group. (we have now been red, yellow, and purple and purple is the best.) We were given purple flags, bandannas, and assorted colored beads. Then we entered the building. When we first got there we were given pirate hats and took a group picture in front of the captain’s wheel of the ship.

My little one with her flag and bandanna.

After the picture we went into another room where there was a bar, and waiters handing out appetizers. The prices at the bar were a little steep but not too far off from any other tourist type attraction. Sodas were $5 they came in a small 3d cup and refills were $1. Beer was $8 in the same cup with refills for $7. They had other options like margaritas and other mixed drinks but we didn’t order those. There was a lot of appetizers, unfortunately with my corn allergy I could not eat many. The others in the group said they were great. There was; chicken strips, tacos, meatballs, ham and cheese, turkey and cheese, fried corn, shrimp, and a lot more. There is not a lot of seating in this area, and the closer it gets to the show time the less appetizers you will get. However if you arrive early like they say, you will have ample opportunity to sample as many as you like. At about 7pm the preshow started and without giving too much of the story away we are captured and taken aboard a ship. At that point you are lead by your waiter/ waitress to your table. I am unable to walk at the moment so I had to go in a wheelchair. I don’t know how much handicap seating is available but we have never had a problem. We were seated in the second row and all six of us sat in the same row.
The waitress introduced herself and gave us pitchers of soda. (From this point on the soda is free.) We were given a choice of vegetable soup or a salad with ranch dressing. We all chose the salad and it was crisp, fresh and really good. The rest of the course is served through out the show. The next choice was either chicken, Spanish rice and broccoli or pork lion with BBQ sauce, mashed potatoes, and broccoli. I had the chicken, it was amazing. We were served a half chicken which was so tender it was falling off the bone and the rice was good too. The broccoli was a little undercooked to my tastes but still edible. The two that had the pork loin said it was ok. The potatoes and broccoli were good but that the pork was a little dry. We were served apple cobbler at the end and cake. (an extra charge we added because of the birthday)  None of our group cared for the apple desert but the cake was moist and fresh.

This is inside the theater, flash is not aloud but this was the best I had.

The show is neat. Once you are in the theater you are told to cheer for your pirate and boo for the other pirates. In order to enjoy the show you have to let your hair down and have fun with it. The pirates take part in contests and audience members help. At one point anyone who paid for a birthday announcement is called on stage and given a small gift. The package we bought was $20 for the birthday girl and she got the bandanna, flag, beads, and cake along with the chance to go onstage and take a picture. The show has comedy, love, trampoline stunts,  a ribbon acrobat, and a lot of fun with pirates. There is a lot of audience participation, but it was not at all forced. Don’t go planning on just watching a show though, you have to cheer and scream and find your inner pirate.

After the show we went back into the main room for a buccaneer’s bash. No one was dancing but the bar and gift shop was open. This was also a good time to take pictures with the pirates.We had a great time and will surly go again.