Best Buys

Birds on the brain, in the sky, and, thirdly, up close

Where to see your fine-feathered friends

My ten-year-old has birds on the brain ever since she got a pet parakeet, and she’s eager to see some that don’t live in cages. Natalie at Free Flight Exotic Bird Sanctuary in Del Mar ...

Date night suggestions

Here are some cheap or free (but fun) options

Bills need to be paid, the kids need to eat, and the bank account is light after a round of expensive dentistry for the family. (If booze is the number-one curse of the Irish, bad ...

Smart shopping for back to school

Don’t be a wasteful first-worlder

Where did the summer go? I blinked and it was suddenly August. Another blink, and August was gone too. As I shared a cocktail last night with a couple friends at Polite Provisions — I ...

Let’s talk about Limeade

High hopes dashed

It’s hot: time to gather the family and taste limeade. We started with the straight stuff. Simply Limeade ($2.99 for 59 oz. at Sprouts) can be found in most grocery stores. “It smells like lime ...

Even the kids like bowling

One hammered two strikes in a row

The leisure days of summer make my mind wander to all the extras I can’t find time to do the rest of the year. One such activity is bowling. The whole family enjoys it but ...

Permanent makeup doesn’t last forever

“I cannot legally say that it is pain-free because sensitivity varies.”

My friend Sophie’s eyeliner is permanently perfect — because it’s permanent. “Permanent makeup is a tattoo,” explained Jeanee Lusby, owner of Natural Look of Permanent Cosmetics in La Jolla (866-550-LOOK), “but it isn’t really permanent ...

Bawk bawk! Chicken broth!

“Stock tends to pick up richness from the bones as it’s made.”

Sometimes, there’s no homemade chicken stock in the freezer. So I zipped around San Diego and gathered up a bunch of chicken juice — mostly broths, but also a few boxed stocks — from the ...

Keeping cool in the inland suburbs

The kids need some waterin' about now

There's no gloom in June anymore.

Partially submerge with the sharks

And then eat prime rib, lamb, and pasta

Uncle Max wants to go swimming with sharks when he visits this year. “It’s a metaphor made literal!” he marvels. Shark Diver (855-987-4275) runs several adventures, including a five-day trip to Guadalupe Island, about 175 ...

Flower choices for the low-water garden

Pretty, but not too thirsty

On the hottest day of last summer, we hosted a wedding reception in our backyard. The thermometer hit 103 degrees as the guests arrived at 2:30 in the afternoon. Our guests clustered in the shady ...

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