Let’s Talk Beef…

I grew up on a small grass fed beef farm in Maine. I miss it most days, except in the winter. I especially miss our beef. We’d have fat, juicy burgers or steaks. The flavor was to die for, and so tender! We rarely eat beef anymore. It all tastes the same to me, bland. We are a family of six, so the thought of shelling out a lot of money on grass fed beef makes my eye twitch.

Enter Jones Creek Beef. I was contacted by this company to try their beef and give my honest opinion. Good or bad. They sent me a gift card to Walmart. Walmart? Why, yes! They can be found in many Walmarts in the SoCal area. Good news for me. So off to Walmart I went to get some steak. While the Walmart I shopped at did NOT have a very good selection, I did purchase a couple Top Round, Ribeye and NY Strip steaks.

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The packaging made it easy to find in the refrigerated section. And it was vacuum sealed, for freshness. Another added bonus. The marbling of the meat was lovely. Just enough fat to add flavor, yet not so much that you don’t get any meat at all, and the color was much more natural than the other meat in that section….I should have taken a comparison picture.

Home I went with my steaks with grand plans in my head of how to cook it. I kept it simple, because I did not want to cover the flavor. I told my family the flavor would be much different than what we are used to with steak. Boy, were they pleasantly surprised! It was full of flavor and not tough at all. Infant you could cut it with a butter knife.

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I am very impressed with the flavor and quality of the steaks. I even froze one and ate it a week later, still just as good. I WILL be going back t buy more.

Everything is AWESOME! Again!

Thursday night my family and I were invited to Legoland to see the premiere of the new 4D movie, The Lego Movie A New Adventure.

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This is a Legoland exclusive movie! And, oh the fun it was!

We started with an hour in the park, where we visited the Mini land to check out the Star Wars scenes and characters. At 5:30pm the fun began. We headed into the park and down the Red Carpet…only to be greeted by Emmet and Wildstyle! After a quick family photo with our new friends, we grabbed some popcorn and candy and headed into the theater to find seats. We were greeted by nice squishy seats. As we settled in the show began. We were greeted by Emmet, wild style and a special appearance from Unikitty and Benny. The excitement in the theater was mounting….then the movie began! I have never been to a 4D movie, but I was pleasantly surprised by the interaction (and the fact that my kids kept their glasses on).  No one cried (pretty good for four kids ages 8, 7, 5,and 3). The movie really held their attention. And why not? I won’t give away any spoilers, below is a quick synopsis:

There is a new villain in town, Risky Business, and he has a new evil plot. Unikitty, Wildstyle, Benny, Metalbeard and Emmet are back to save the day.

Want to know more? You will have to go see the movie! Playing exclusively at Legoland!

 

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NO SPEND January

For those of you who are wondering what the heck I’m talking about when I say “I can’t spend money this month” or its “No spend January” I shall explain.

The last few weeks of December my van, that we owned free and clear, died. Reality check. We needed to buy a new van a year sooner than we planned. now what?

We have always had a budget. Heck living in California, you NEED a budget because, well, gas is more expensive, milk is more expensive and just plain breathing is more expensive. Basically you are paying for the great weather. So we budgeted when we moved here three years ago. Then we bought a house, and the budget got tighter. Well, now with a new car its tighter. So we decided we need to regain control. We have two separate accounts. One for monthly bills. Car, house, HOA, electric, and so on come out of one account. The other account is our spending money. The spending money leaves our hands very quickly. Not surprising with four small kids who eat ALL day and have needs like diapers, and new clothes and shoes and ballet…We decided that January we would not spend a dime on anything that A) was not already budgeted (i.e. a date night, Girl/Boy Scout stuff, etc) and B) that we didn’t “need” (i.e. new workout clothes, toys, random stuff). So far, half way through the month, we are on top. Good thing because we had an electrical problem that warranted a call to an electrician ($85). SO instead of blowing all our spending money we have saved some, and still have some to spend AND payday is tomorrow. Win-win. We have budgeted a few things for the second half of the month, and it’ll be tighter, but not as tight as in the past when we’d eat out or order pizza. Our grocery bill is still higher than we’d like. We started buying by the week instead of in bulk, which is really not working in our favor, so that is something we will improve on.

The best part is, during this No Spend month, I have managed to re-organize and re-make over my craft room using only what is available to me, and by not spending a dime on anything new! The big reveal is coming, as I’d like to slap some paint on the walls first, but so far so good!

And for the final BIG announcement…..I am a Legoland Insider Blogger!! Woot!! I am so excited to start this fun and exciting role!! More on that later….and only big craft room makeover!Legolander_logo_2016_FINAL-03

 

Craft room makeover

Besides running and triathlons and all things fitness, I love to sew and craft. Recently we sold the queen bed that took up half of our guys room. The thought behind it was to build a murphy bed, but with hubby’s retirement from the Navy being 18 months away, and him not wanting to stay in California, well, it made no sense. (sorry visitors). We also have visitors every 6 months so it’s pointless to have a bed in there at all. Its a waste of space and becomes a collector of crap. SO here I am with an “empty” room at my disposal. Its not completely empty as I do have my sewing machines in there and am thinking about moving my desk for its cramped space in my bedroom down. For today I am organizing. I have torn everything out of the closet and stolen shelving from the garage and I am hoping to come up with something….so far its a mess. A mess that stretches from the downstairs guest room all the way to the laundry room. Since we got ride of the bed, there is now the bedding to contend with and store. Bedding is expensive and where ever we may end up we may need it. I think. I don’t know. I’m just not ready to give up the nice down comforter just yet.

SO today I am plugging away at it. I will update with pictures in the near future!

Jumping on the Star Wars The Force Awakens Bandwagon

When the newest Star Wars movie came out a few weeks ago, my husband and I did what any other human on the planet did and went to see it. It was awesome. Some good ol’ cheesiness added in and a nice mix of beloved characters and new ones. The movie left us scratching our heads about the new heroine, Rey. And here is the collaborated theory we came up with:

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So what do you think? Agree? Disagree? Yeah, I know….you agree!

I’m So BEHIND!

Phew. The year is almost over and I am so far behind!! I have been finishing up my one race a month for 2015! Last race is the San Diego Holiday Half after Christmas. It was so much fun last year despite my husband being deployed and my kids being watched by a sitter. This year I have a lot of extended family in town! Free baby sitters! HA!

I should take advantage of that, but I just cannot find the time to run! My family keeps me going everyday. Shopping. Errands. Just everyday stuff. So I have not kept up with running. I have not kept up with my house. Nothing.

The new year looks promising. I have signed up for the Rock N Roll Marathon in San Diego. I figured that I put so much work into training that I’d better try a different race. I also want to spend more time only bike this year! That means more triathlons!! I can’t wait!

SO here is to the new year! I’m sure it’ll be better than ever!

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Disney….finally!

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For the first week of Fall Break we decided to go to Disneyland. We’ve been in San Diego for three years now and figured it was time.  So we bought three day park hopper passes (thank you Military Salute) and used the free hotel nights my hubby had earned to stay at a hotel across from the park. We left Sunday afternoon. Crazy thought, I know! But the only traffic we hit was in La Costa. The rest was smooth sailing.

When we arrived, we were told about Downtown Disney. You know, the shops and restaurants and whatnot. We decided to stroll over for dinner. It was pretty late, but we got right in. Poor Liev fell asleep at the table. A sure sign we should head back to the hotel. My husband and older two watch the fireworks from our hotel while I got the littlest two settled in and to sleep. I had three more days to catch the fireworks, right? Ha.

The next morning we decided to get up early and hit the park when it opened. Disney was on the agenda. Off we went to stand in the giant line. Once inside it wasn’t so bad. We went to Tomorrowland first. We rode the rockets with all four kids and then hubby took the older three on the Star Wars ride. Mommy and Kiran had to sit this one out. In fact, Kiran had to sit many rides out. We decided against Space Mountain. But went on Nemo’s underwater Submarine, the Monorail, train and headed for our next destination. Vasili refused to go on It’s a Small World. So we skipped it and headed elsewhere. Around 2 the kids were all getting cranky, so we decided we’d head back to the hotel to cool off in the pool and return later.

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Off to the pool we went. It was so very crowded and we left after about an hour, especially since there were kids jumping off the shallow end side and nearly missing my kids and some other little kids. Not cool. We went back to the room for snacks, played some arcade games and headed back out to Disney. This time we headed for Frontierland! I wanted to ride the Riverboat. But first we visited the shooting area. Where Kiran fell asleep. Vasili thought it was pretty cool, but hard to see in the dark. Off to the Riverboat. Just as we were about to board, Sibylla had to use the restroom….then so did Liev. The ONE ride I really wanted to do. So, reluctantly I took Liev, Sibylla and sleeping Kiran into the bathroom, missing the ride. Hubby and Vasili rode the Riverboat while we were gone. There is a happy ending to this, though, Sibylla and I rode the River boat Wednesday and Princess Tiana was on it with us! So that made up for it!

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Tuesday was California Adventure Park. What a park! I absolutely loved it there! We hit up the swings, Golden Zephyr, Ferris Wheel, Cars Land, Little Mermaid….all kinds of stuff! We hardly stood in line (we didn’t at Disney either). I enjoyed California Adventure Park more. We even met Anna and Elsa, Lightning McQueen and Mator! Not sure who was more excited there! We spent the entire day in the Adventure Park plus most of the day Wednesday! Needless to say it was out favorite park! We only went to Disney Wednesday for Indiana Jones and the Riverboat, but ended up going on Splash Mountain and going to the Pirate Island, which turned out to be a really fun adventure with caves, bridges and treasure!

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Overall it was a great trip! One I hope to do again! We had only one major meltdown, but we made it through it and it was the last night, so apparently everyone was pretty exhausted. Next time I want to see those fireworks.

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