Sizing Down My Holidays 12 – 10 to 12 – 18

Hey Kids! is a weekly feature looking at what’s coming up for families and kids of all ages.

Hello Mission Families-the winter holiday season is upon us in all his glorious madness. Nary a turkey has passed me by, and I am already exhausted.

The first Monday of every January, when I can barely roll my bones out of bed to get Ernesto to school, I pledge that I will take the next one in stride, I will make time to relax, I will reflect the true meaning of Christmas and blah, blah blah…

Then December starts and I get sucked into the vortex of silliness that this season seems to engender in even the sanest of us.

But this year I have a barely imaginable ally: this awful economy. This time of transition and uncertainty, which causes worry and anxiety on so many levels, is doing one thing for me: it is showing that when resources are scarce they must go to what matters most..

So this year, there was no elbowing on Black Friday nor browsing on Cyber Monday, and there will not be mad dashing from cringle to cookie exchange, nor splurging on trunks and troves the lack of which I will never feel.

May this week be the start of a sane and fulfilling holiday season.

Enjoy my picks!

A Different Take on a Classic
The Dance Brigade will be back at the Brava Theater this weekend for the annual performance of The Revolutionary Nutcracker Sweetie. It’s really just names and characters that are left from the original, in this funky, rescripted version of the classic, but the Mission is known to create its own new traditions!

Enjoying this Fair City
Our new lieutenant governor is going out with a bang! This Sunday, December 12, he is hosting the First City Hall Holiday Open House. The Hall will be open from 2 5 p.m. while the activities in Civic Center will commence at 10 a.m. and include a children snow park and a petting zoo. Take a look at the press release for all details.

Shaping Crafts and Arts
Little Lane Studio opens its door for drop in family art making every Saturday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Every week a different project or medium will be featured for “family fun sessions focus on teaching skills for printmaking, painting, environmental art with found objects, botanical collage…” all for a very reasonable $8/class

Taking Tea
My mother in law is British, and with time, she has infused a love for this most civilized of afternoon rituals. This year we will introduce Ernesto to this family tradition. Local Lovejoy’s Tea Room in Noe Valley is my favorite spot and with at $13.95 for kids under 10, also the best bargain.

Discovering Theater
The student talent of the San Francisco Conservatory of Music will shine on Saturday in a performance of Hansel and Gretel, an opera for families. Shows are at 1 and 4 p.m. and tickets, a bargain at $5 each, can be bought the day of the performance.

Ernesto and I went to see The Velveteen Rabbit this past Thursday, it is a truly delightful production and it is on its last weekend, don’t miss it.

This is opening weekend of the Marsh Youth Theatre Siddharta, the Bright Path, a sensitive retelling of Siddhartha’s journey to become the Buddha, “told in parallel with that of Chandra, a modern-day San Francisco girl who finds herself posing similar questions”. Shows are at 3 p.m. this Saturday and Sunday and tickets range from $10 to $50.

Enjoying Heritages
Parols, hand crafted lamps, are the “quintessential Filipino symbol of hope, blessings, luck, peace and light during the holiday season”. They will be on parade this Saturday from 3 p.m. to 8 p.m. during the last of this year’s Gardens’ Festivals at Yerba Buena Gardens. There is no charge for this events. After this event, the activities will resume next May.

Staying Healthy
Personal chef and mom Zoe Philips and certified nutritionist Deb Zambetti will teach parents and children from 5 to 12 how to make healthy holiday treats at 18Reasons this Saturday from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. The workshop is $35 per parent and child.

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A native Italian, US-based professional with 30 years of multifaceted experience in the field of Italian food, Viola transitioned to teaching 10 years ago, with the goal of getting home cooks to gather daily around the stove and table. She believes that from our kitchens, we can make the world a better place. By cooking good food at the intersection of Italian table culture and local agriculture, she teaches people to enjoy and value good food, and understand its critical role to the overall well being of our communities. For more details on registering for Viola’s classes and other food-related activities go to her website.
For more details on registering for Viola’s classes and other food-related activities click here.

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