Malibu Country Mart’s Annual Winter Wonderland

malibu country mart christmas tree

Starting this Saturday, December 6, and running through December 20, the Malibu Country Mart will be transformed into a winter wonderland, SoCal style. There will be the usual suspects: Christmas tree, menorah, and twinkling lights. But on each of the December Saturdays before Christmas there will also be special activities.

Victorian carolers will stroll through the Mart, singing holiday favorites while children participate in holiday-themed activities such as stocking and dreidel decorating, face painting, and homemade cookie decorating.

malibu country mart holiday events

And for the older kids and parents, the stores in Malibu Country Mart will be running holiday specials. If you’ve never bothered to stop at the Mart on your way to somewhere else, trust me. It’s worth it. In fact, it’s a great destination in itself!

See their website for additional information.

Halloween in the Bubble

Most people in these parts go trick-or-treating in one of three areas: Hempstead Street, Three Springs in Westlake Village, and Deerhill in Oak Park. When I say “most people” I mean most trick-or-treating aged kids and their parents that we know in Agoura Hills.

For our first Halloween as Agoura residents we went along with the popular trend and ventured off to Hempstead. I was impressed with the organization of the event – the streets into the neighborhood are closed off the car traffic, and emergency response teams and police are on hand just in case. Many of the houses are over-the-top tricked out in decorations and even operate as haunted houses. Of course everyone wants to go there.

But.

That year my kids were 5 and 3, and my husband did not come with us. They each took off in different directions, which is one thing when you’re walking along a normal street, but treacherous and nervewracking when that street is as crowded as Disneyland’s Main Street just after the fireworks.

Dude. It’s just too crowded for me. Plus because there were so many kids, they all had to stand in line at each house for their one piece of candy.

Every year since then, we’ve trick or treated here in our own neighborhood. Only every third house has a light on, and we only see a rare band of other kids out reveling, but it’s much easier for me to keep track of mine, and there’s no waiting in line. There’s no need for me to drive, find a unicorn parking space in the crowded streets around the target neighborhood, and chase my children through the crowds.

Also, it makes our neighbors feel good. There are some houses around here whose owners decorate like crazy, rigging up zombie mannequins that talk to you as you walk by, or full-on mock graveyards with things crawling out of the ground. But hardly anyone comes. Every time they open the door to my children’s cries of “Trick or treeeeeeeat!” each adult has joy on his or her face. “Wow, great to have you!” they say, or “We didn’t think we’d see any kids tonight!” And then they dump half their candy supply into my kids’ bags. After 45 minutes of this, my children are tired and their bags are full.

I know I am in the minority among parents in this town, but I know I’m not the only one who feels this way. Take a chance, I encourage you, and try trick or treating in your own neighborhood. Take back Halloween!

Sadly, this might be the last year I get away with this little family scenario. My boys were asking to go off with their friends this year, and I firmly denied. There were only a few tears, and in the end we had just as much fun as ever. But I’m not sure that will work next year. Sad trombone.

halloween2014

Best Treasure Ever: $7,000 Necklace at Vintage Malibu

Picture 381

I’m a geocacher, which means I take part in a nerdy but fun GPS-led worldwide treasure hunt for fun. The “treasure” is usually just a little container with a logbook in it that I sign, replace, and go about my way. The thrill is the find, people.

vintage malibu

That’s why I love this cute (and possibly lucrative) event that’s being held at the posh yet friendly Malibu Country Mart next weekend. On February 9, starting at 8:00 AM, couples can sign up for a scavenger hunt, racing to find different clues around the mart, with a $7,000 diamond and onyx pendant from Vintage Malibu as the grand prize.

Other prizes are:
Dinner for two on Valentine’s Day at Mr. Chow – Malibu (value $170)
$100 Malibu Country Mart gift card
Box of truffles and cocktail shaker with vodka shots from K Chocolatier ($85 value)

I mean, what else are you younguns gonna do on a Sunday morning?

Vintage Malibu at Malibu Country Mart
3835 Cross Creek Rd., Suite 38
Malibu, CA 90265

For more information on the Scavenger Hunt or for rules and regulations please visit Malibu Country Mart’s Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/MalibuCountryMart