We like it when friends make recommendations - find them more useful than any guides.
you HAVE to go to Extraordinary Desserts.
http://www.extraordinarydesserts.com/locations.htm - the Little Italy location.There is no better dessert place in the USA than that. Also great for afternoon snack and coffee/tea/hot cocoa.Try to stay in La Jolla. It's pretty central and you can walk around in La Jolla Village, La Jolla Shores and it's beautiful if the weather isn't rainy. A bit more expensive since it's nominated as the most beautiful beach in the continental USA.Yelp is good for restaurant recommendations - lots of new places have opened and I try new ones every time I go back to see my family.To visit, good for kids:- World Famous SD Zoo- Wild Animal Park is also great, take the tram ride and it's kind of like a safari- Legoland- Carlsbad Outlet Mall (more high end) or San Ysidro Outlet Mall (near the border, regular brands) - GREAT shopping of brand names for cheap- Balboa Park - must walk around to see the history/culture- La Jolla Shores beach walk- go to Coronado to see Hotel del Coronado and the beaches around thereThat's a good start :)