i heart oc

Welcome to I {heart} OC week… As you’ve probably already guessed, we {heart} OC in a big, pink, puffy heart kinda way. But we know we aren’t the only ones. So, we’ve dedicated an one ENTIRE week, & asked some of our readers to tell us (& you) whey they {heart} OC. Maybe it’s a specific attraction or restaurant. Perhaps is just the laid back way of life. Or, maybe it’s all about the Dole Whip on a hot, sunny day. Whatever it is, we want to know, & we figured we’d bring you along for the ride.

Meet Jenny. A long-time Orange County resident & mother of two wild and crazy boys. When she isn’t chasing little ones (& sometimes even if she is), I can pretty much guarantee that you’ll find her with a camera around her neck – that’s her favorite way to explore Orange County.

My Love affair with the OC started in 1989, when my Dad was transferred for work, to a city called Mission Viejo.   We left Northern California which might as well be a different state – because it really is THAT different, from the OC. I just could not believe how beautiful EVERYTHING was.  My first day of Junior high did not go as well  as I had  planned, being that I had super short hair, wore a lot of black, and all the other girls looked like they had just walked off the set of 90210.  The last bit holds true today.  It took me awhile to make friends, but my parents made up for it by buying me my first annual pass to Disneyland.  I grew up there at Disneyland.   It was as if it was my own personal playground.  I ended up growing my hair out and although I never have, and never will, look like one of those 90210 girls, I have found my way in this beautiful county.  Making friends, meeting my husband, who coincidentally graduated from Mission Viejo High school the same year as me, and becoming a photographer, with the most beautiful backdrops I think any photographer would dream about.  I never plan on leaving.

We have so many unique places to this area.  You can be at the beach (Favorite : Strands Beach) one minute and a nature setting (Favorite: Irvine Regional Park) the next.  You can live in a bustling new community (Ladera Ranch) or you go back in time to streets that seem totally untouched by progress (Orange Circle).

I now have two boys and have the most fun practicing my photography skills on them in amazing OC locations.

I would like to tell you about some not so well known spots that you can get the most fantastic pictures of your kids and yet everybody will have a blast while being there!

First up is the Fullerton Arboretum.  When I first heard of this spot, I will be honest, I thought it sounded boring.  Believe me when I say I was really, really wrong.  Waterfalls, huge trees and a museum;  there is SO much Orange County history here.  Bring your camera and a picnic and you can stay for hours…..

orange county blog

Do you like weird places? If so I have the spot for you. The Atlantis play center in Garden Grove is this odd little play place hidden in Garden grove.  It feels like a total time warp and the kids LOVE the old fashioned play equipment.  My boys really used their imaginations here and it was fun to watch!  The best part is you have to have a child to be admitted! Again another great spot for picnic and play!

I could go on and on, but this is getting lengthy.  One more….

Now this place is not exactly unknown, but I don’t think it gets the credit it deserves:  Knott’s Berry Farm.  Every year on my Birthday in April we go and every year we have the whole place to ourselves and it is always fun. It is rarely crowded in the spring.   My oldest son is obsessed with trains and the Knott’s park is luckily full of them.  Ghost town has the most amazing spots for pictures and is just plain fun to explore with your kids.

So that is some of why I LOVE the OC!  Take time and go explore places you would not normally go! Take lots of pictures and have fun!!!

A few other spots I love to take fun pictures! Adventure City, The Dana Point Harbor, Laguna Niguel Regional Park, Heritage Hill, Peters Canyon National park, The Irvine Open Space Preserve, the Norman P. Murray Center,  Balboa Fun Zone, Lake Forest Duck Pond, and Zoomars…. just to name a few!


Thanks Jenny! It’s so fun seeing Orange County through the eyes of a photographer! Read more about Jenny HERE on her blog, or follow her on Twitter HERE.

xoxo, K

p.s. interested in contributing & telling us why YOU {heart} OC? Just send us an email: justspotted@gmail.com