Jeff Martin's rise to CrossFit acclaim began in the small front room of the phone company he owned with his wife, Mikki. There, he began to teach martial-arts classes in kickboxing, Kenpo karate, and krav maga under the company name Brand X, building a foundation of self-defense skills as his class sizes steadily increased. Jeff's devotion to CrossFit was born simultaneously with Brand X's move to a larger location. Both he and his wife earned their training certifications and established their gym as one of the first official CrossFit affiliates. He then went on to spearhead the CrossFit Kids program, a venture that led to his title as Director of Youth Training for CrossFit Headquarters and the recent surge in toddler NBA recruits.
Today, the classes at CrossFit Brand X encompass every facet of Jeff's journey through the fitness industry. Elite coaches, Kenpo black belts, and certified krav-maga instructors lead sessions for all age groups that aim for functional strength and endurance, helping patrons to feel more powerful and able in their day-to-day activities such as lifting heavy boxes and scaling flights of stairs. The 30-minute CrossFit workouts cull techniques from weightlifting, gymnastics, and cardio drills, challenging muscles with movements that correspond to real-life tasks for all-around health.
"The haunting melody of a howling wolf pack is heard in only a handful of states, as wolves have been exterminated from a vast majority of their original range," explains the California Wolf Center's website. Though these howling cries are harder to find than they once were, one place to witness their grandeur is at the California Wolf Center.
The non-profit was founded in 1977 to educate the public about wildlife and ecology, specifically the history and behavior of the gray wolf. Located 50 miles east of San Diego, it houses two subspecies of wolves: the Alaskan gray wolf and the endangered Mexican gray wolf. The center also participates in the Mexican Wolf Species Survival Plan, which aims to help the endangered species recover in the wild. At the facility, wolves live in enclosures that can help retain their natural behavior, as some of them will eventually be released back into the wild.
My Kids Clubhouse supervisors watch over open play as socked feet scamper through a ball pit and a mesh tunnel opening onto three slides. Across the open-format playroom floor, youngsters as old as 8 direct their own imaginative adventures in a play kitchen, soft-block area, dress-up area, and puppet theater.
Parents can drop their kids off through a secure check-in service, join their progeny on the playroom floor, or sip coffee in the Wi-Fi–enabled Clubhouse Café. In addition to holding open play hours, My Kids Clubhouse hosts two-hour birthday parties, including a slumber party option and a dinosaur-themed blowout with 3.5 billion candles to celebrate the birth of life on Earth.
My Kids Clubhouse founder Stephanie Antin opened her indoor playrooms after a disappointing search for creative play options for her own three children. She teamed up with business maven Jeri Price Smith to open two recreational locations in Poway and Bonita. Child development consultant Debbie Cazares funnels 20 years of education experience, a master's degree in Developmental Psychology, and 10 years of experience as a child to design the most creative and educational programs.
San Diego Self Storage oversees an ample and affordable arsenal of storage units and a network of neighborhood facilities. Storage rates and available unit sizes and types vary by location; however, you may be able to stow faulty bedknobs and broomsticks in a 10'x10' climate-controlled unit ($119–$189/month) or a 5'x5' lower-interior unit ($44-$79/month). Stuff storers can also hide away truffles from Lagotto Romagnolos in a 10'x20' exterior unit ($199–$319/month).
Edible Arrangements' more than 50 fresh, artful fruit baskets combine the aesthetic elements and emotive properties of floral arrangements with the juicy edibility of fruit. The sweetery's designers stud the Delicious Daisy, a bouquet of sliced honeydew, pineapple, and cantaloupe, with strawberries and strings of grapes that can double as a 25th-anniversary gift for a Smucker's jam heiress ($35). Decadent, gluten-free layers of white and semisweet chocolate coat fruit in a 12-piece box of hand-dipped strawberries and bananas ($25). Customers can also put today's Groupon toward a larger centerpiece, such as the Melon Delight, a decorative spray of watermelon wedges, pineapple daisies, cantaloupe, honeydew, grapes, and double-dipped bananas sprouting from a watering can ($76). The preservative-free treats are all handcrafted at the apex of freshness, readying hand-dipped dainties to be hand-shoved into eagerly awaiting mouths.
The Salvation Army Family Store collects and resells donated items ranging from vintage clothing to antique furniture. Patrons can search for wardrobes, tables, and couches to fill out their home, plates and silverware to stock their empty kitchen, and VCRs to feed their pet robot. All proceeds from the Family Stores support The Salvation Army's San Diego Adult Rehabilitation Center, a 12-step work therapy and faith-based residential and transitional rehabilitation program for men and women dealing with alcohol and substance abuse. The six-month to two-year program is offered to program participants at no cost.
Though the best way to contribute to the organization's mission, especially following natural disasters such as the recent wildfires, is with monetary donations, the Salvation Army accepts donations of used goods and clothing to sell in the network of Family Stores. All sales of these donated items support the funding of the organization's programming. To donate goods, call (800) 728-7825 or visit www.SanDiego.SATruck.org; for monetary donations, call (866) 455-4357, visit www.SanDiego.SalvationArmy.org, or send to The Salvation Army Divisional Headquarters, SD Fires, 2320 Fifth Avenue, San Diego, CA 92101.