This is a blog all about my life and interest. Keep reading if you want to find out about what I'm doing now.

Saturday, November 8, 2014

Toms Warehouse Sale

Yesterday I was out spending money! The opposite of what I am supposed to be doing, I know. But I was at the Toms Warehouse Sale in Ontario.
 Also check out their sale website here. So technically I was saving money because I go shoes at more than 50% off. Get all the details on their current sales here.

Let me tell you, it was a long day! I waited nearly 2 hours just to get inside. This is where I started, on the corner of Archibald and Francis.
 If you do go I would seriously suggest sunblock, snacks, drinks and an umbrella. It was super sunny and hard to stay in the shade. There were lots of shoes in several stiles, These are just a few.

This is the price sheet that has all of the styles available.

This is my haul

Yes those are my feet! I am going to get a pedicure soon. I was in line to pay so long I just got tired of holding that bag. And yes, I did help several kids get shoes. This is pretty much all the shoes I"m going to buy for the next 12 months. :)

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

BMC Pho in Covina

Today was one of the first cold days of the season, and my favorite thing to do on a cold day is have soup. I was craving Pho, and one of my friends said why don't we try that Pho place on Azusa we always drive by. So I looked it up on Yelp and off we went to lunc at BMC Pho is on 402 N Azusa Ave in Covina.

 This place is a  fast food restaurant that offers both sit down and drive through service. I'm told it's a chain but this is the only one I know of. BMC offers Vietnamese sandwiches, egg rolls, boba, and a host of other Vietnamese dishes as well as Pho. They have chicken Pho for like $3, but I always order Beef Pho.

 I ordered the #1 which the menu said was Filet Mignon Pho and a Thai Tea, no boba. There was a lot of tendon, and a couple of meatballs in it also. Overall the broth had nice flavor, there was plenty of meat, and of course the traditional lime, bean sprouts, Thai pepper. I give it a thumbs up.

Sunday, October 19, 2014

My review of Knott's Scarry Farm

So Halloween is our favorite time of year. My hubby and I love to go to Halloween events. We have been going to Knott's Scarry Farm since we started dating ( I won't say how long ago). Anyway, we have been going to this event a long time. And now we have a formula. We always go to the Pre-Scare Dinner, this year called the Boo-Fet. We do the buffet because it allows you to get into the event up to 30 minutes before they open the main gate.
Usually this is a good deal for us, but not this year. You have to book the Boo-fet in advance and they give you a reservation time. Well, ours was 6:00 pm, and we made a reservation for 4. We showed up at 5:45 and got in line to check in. It turned out that Knott's was not honoring the reservation times and was just letting people into the dinner when ever they got in line. You can imagine the mess this caused. So many people were let in before us that the buffet was overwhelmed and they didn't even have enough seats for all the people who were waiting in line with us. 
We had to wait 30 minutes past our reservation time, were stuck in a back room, had to share a table with other people (that part wasn't so bad, the people we sat with were nice), and we had to wait around for food because the kitchen was having trouble keeping the buffet full. The soda machine didn't work, and there weren't enough servers either. The food was not good, chicken was overcooked, as was the roast beef. The sides were watery, and the ribs were not good. 
We grabbed a little food, and headed out the back door of the restaurant just a few minutes before the main gaits opened. So much for 30 minutes! We also found out that there was a special lazer tag scare thing called Special Ops: Infected that we were not able to sign up for because they didn't even tell us about it at the buffet. You had to go the main gait and sign up for it. It covered all of Camp Snoopy (read: no scare zone there!!!) and blocked that whole end of the park. We 
We managed to jump on the Calico Mine Ride which was called The Witches Keep before the gates opened. The Mine Ride itself was cool, but the Halloween Theming was lame! Knott's totally rehabbed the original ride, which I guess was the reason that they went super lite on the Halloween decorations. Same with the Log Ride, the totally rehabbed it and it looked great, but no Halloween decor at all. 
So lets move on to the mazes! That's what we go for. The first one we hit was Black Magic. It was behind Accelerator, and the only Maze on that side of the park. This maze is  Houdini themed and it did have a few cool effects. The one thing I though was strange is that the people who purchased the Skeleton Key (and extra feature that you had to pay for) had to wait longer than we did. They had a big line, and from what I saw the got to interact with a magician, which is why they had to wait so long. 
Basically after you do that maze you may as well head back to towards Ghost Town because they have nothing else Halloween on that side of the park, not even a Scare Zone.There was supposed to be a Scare Zone in Fiesta Village, but there were 3 monsters total. Fiesta Village has some Dia de Los Muertos decor, but not much else.
We had to go almost to the main gate to get to our next maze, The Gunslingers Grave. This was a very cool western themed maze, complete with some gruesome animals, a horse corral, and a saloon. This gave me a few scares, and even made my hubby jump.  
We went to the Elvira's Big Top Show next, and I was disappointed. Elvira really didn't do much during the show, although her side show performers (a sword swallower and a contortionist) were really cool. They also had a Academy of Villians dance troupe performing in the Elvira show, and I thought they were awesome, but Elvira really didn't dance with them. She told a couple of jokes, changed outfits once, and that was it. 
We ran through the Pinocchio Unstrung Maze, which hasn't changed much (it's been a park staple for years) and is supposed to be Pinocchio's revenge for not being turned into a real boy. If you are scared of dolls then this one will scare you. We went to Forevermore which was in Mystery Lodge, and it's the same Edgar Allen Poe, Jack the Ripper maze we've seen for years. I was not scared at all. 
The Hanging is usually my favorite part of Knott's Halloween Haunt, but this one was lame. Usually the jokes rip hard on all the themes of the year, but this year they went soft, and most of the jokes were about Justin Beiber. 

We headed through Ghost Town, which is where most of the scares are. Lots of smoke, and a few monsters, but the monsters were very minimal and hardly scary. The last 4 mazes were located in the backstage area behind Ghost rider. First up was Trick or Treat, which was pretty decent with a few scares. Next was VooDoo an New Orleans themed maze. The set was very cool, the outside was a New Orleans house that looked pretty good, and the inside was a very detailed swamp. But the maze was not scary and way too short. 
Last up was Dominion of the Damned, which you had to go through to get to Tooth fairy. I wasn't thrilled about this, but Dominion of the Damned was really scary. Tooth fairy was strange, it had TV's outside that played scenes from children's bedrooms playing over and over on them, which was supposed to be scary, but seemed more creepy (not in a good way), but the inside of the maze was pretty good. 
Overall I was disappointed, and not that scared. I really wish there were more monsters, and  better shows. I'm thinking next year we will skip this one!

Sunday, August 17, 2014

My new favorite cupcakes!

So I found a new yummy cupcake place! Well technically I found the cupcake food truck, but there is a store too,

My Delight Cupcakes has a store in Ontario, but they also have a traveling cupcake truck! Now, I'm all for baking my own cupcakes, but I'm not going to go to the trouble of making the super awesome flavors they make.

The newest flavor that I tried is Jack and Cherry Coke

Yummy Jack Daniels flavored frosting and a coke cupcake with cherry filling. 
If you are a coffee lover they also have Caramel Macchiato.

Yummy coffee flavored frosting and a chocolate covered coffee bean on top. I could totally have one in place of my morning coffee.

The Mimosa cupcake was also super awesome. An orange champagne treat. (I do like that they make boozy flavors.)

But by far and away my favorite cupcake is the Breakfast cupcake!

A maple bacon pancake fantasy. There is even bacon baked inside of the cake.

Of course there are tons of other flavors, but these are my favorites! Check them out at  or on facebook . And they have minis of most flavors so you can try a bunch without too many calories!

Sunday, July 27, 2014

Save money on food without coupons!

Hi there! This is my first blog post! I decided to start this blog to talk about all of the things I am interested in, and saving money is one of them! So in this post I'm going to talk about how I save money on groceries. Why do I want to save money? So that I can spend it on the important stuff! Lol, what is important you may ask? Well, crafting, traveling, home improvements, and hanging out with my friends.

This post is all about how I save money without couponing. Don't get me wrong, I do coupon, but hey, that's not enough. This post is all about how I keep from spending money on food in the first place. One way to save money is don't wast food! Yup, that's what I want to talk about. And I am not a member of the clean your plate club. I don't think that it's healthy to eat stuff when you are not hungry just because you don't want to waste it. I am just trying to make my groceries last a bit longer so I don't have to shop as often. And hey, that's tip #1

1. Don't shop every week! Why, because you will buy more food. Sounds a bit silly, right? But I'm serious. When I shop I buy all kinds of extra stuff that is not on my list. I saw something new, or hubby's favorite doughnuts were on sale, I wanted to try a new cereal. But all those extra's add up. If only shop every other week there are less opportunities for me to buy extra food.

2. Eat those leftovers! I used to be really bad at eating leftovers. I would take home half my place from a restaurant because portion sizes are huge, or I would make a recipe at home that was for 6 people and there are only 2 of us. Well, I wasn't big on eating the food after it sat for 24 hours, so in the trash it went.

But no more! I make it a point to eat my leftovers in the next day or two. If my leftovers are not enough for a full meal I will whip up a salad or some other complimentary side to go with it. And I try to look at what is already open to plan my next meal instead of making something completely new and opening a bunch of new jars. Why make open a new can of soup when there is meatloaf in the fridge. (FYI, there is almost never left over meatloaf in my house. I make a killer meatloaf that my hubby devours.) 

3. Turn your little bits of food into something else. No one wants to make a sandwich with those heels of bread, right? 

And the last 2 slices of sourdough hubby bought a the farmers market went stale. (Happens all the time)

No problem. Put them in the blender and make bread crumbs. Seal them up in a freezer bag and they last for weeks. If my recipe calls for Italian bread crumbs, I just add that Italian herb seasoning to them. I never have to buy bread crumbs again.

Got half a cucumber from last night's salad? 

I chop it up and take it to work for afternoon snack. Some lemon and chili powered make the cucumber yummy. My co-workers will love it too. I also used sliced cucumber and fruit to make my own flavored waters. I put the slices in a glass pitcher, fill with water, an stick them into the fridge for an hour. Yummy and low cal. Plus I don't have to buy soda.

I've always got a ton of blue cheese in the fridge because Hubby loves the stuff. 

So I make a healthier homemade dressing with some unflavored yogurt, mayo, Worcestershire sauce and garlic. If veggies starting to look wilty I make a smoothie and throw them in with the fruit. Or pop them in the blender with fresh tomatoes for a healthy soup. Carrots, celery, cabbage and squash are great to add to soup. The leftover half of a Zucchini also gets shredded to go into my baked goods. Zucchini muffins anyone?

If I have chili in the fridge left over from chili dogs, I make loaded baked potatoes the next night. Beans and rice can be a burrito, or add cheese and chips for nachos. The point is to use up what's open before I open something new. This may take a little bit of planning on my part because I have to have hot dogs and potatoes in the house, but it saves me from have to do loads of cooking so it all balances in the end. 

4. Freeze it! The freezer is my best friend. I'm even considering buying a stand alone freezer. (Maybe with all the money I'm saving?) I always get overenthusiastic about buying strawberries, and hubby doesn't like them. So I slice half the strawberries I buy and freeze them for later. They make great smoothies!

And I have tons of veggies all at once from my garden. I can only give so many away to the neighbors so

I freeze them for later use. Berries, banana, spinach, kale, pineapple, peas, and tomatoes freeze very well. The trick with freezing fruit is to freeze them spread out on a baking sheet and freeze them before I put them into a bag, that way they don't end up a big frozen block. For bananas I peal and slice them before freezing them on a baking tray to make using them easier. Frozen berries can go into my morning oatmeal before I put it in the microwave, or into yogurt before I leave for work so they are defrosted by the time I get there. Everything else can go into smoothies or get defrosted for use in a recipe later. 

Fresh herbs can be frozen too. I chop them up and put them in ice cube trays with olive oil. When they are frozen i pop them out and put them in freezer bags with labels. Each cube is about 1 tablespoon. 

I blanch tomatoes and peal the skins before I freeze them. It's a good idea to blanch sliced zucchini, although I don't blanch zucchini if I shred it before freezing it.  I squeeze oranges and lemons and freeze the juice the same way. Just make sure to label and date everything so you know what it is later. And I can do this with my coffee too. Freeze leftover coffee in ice cube trays, then put the coffee cubes in the blender for my own frozen treat, or add to milk for iced coffee. 

5. Buy smart in bulk. What is the point of buying in bulk to save money if you don't eat it? Some things I don't need in large quantities because we just won't eat that much, and not everything freezes well. Like bagels. My hubby used to always buy the dozen at Costco, and I was forever throwing out moldy bagels from the fridge.  And they don't freeze well (I tried, and they always tasted funny when we defrost them). So I started buying 4 packs of bagels from Fresh and Easy for $2.29. A dozen bagels at Costco are like $4.99, so I'm actually saving over $2. And if we don't eat all four, then I'm only tossing  1 or 2 moldy bagels, not 10. Also, studies showed that people who buy lots  food in bulk tend to eat larger portions of food because they don't want to waste it. 

So what do I buy in bulk? Things we eat a lot, like cheese for one. 

Hubby loves cheddar cheese, especially shredded, just as a snack. So I buy the bricks of cheese at Costco, and I picked up these shredder containers at Ikea that have lids. 

Shred away, and when it's full pop the lid on and put it in the fridge. Way cheaper than buying the already shredded stuff. Remember to keep the rest of the block of cheese in an air tight container so it won't get moldy. 

I also buy baking supplies in bulk. You can get 25 lbs of flour for like $7.00, and sugar never goes bad so I buy that in bulk too. Canned beans and veggies are also a good buy. Not in that enormous single can, but in the packs of 6-12 cans since they have a long shelf life. And oatmeal. Instead of buy the single serving instant kind, I buy the large box of Quaker Old Fashioned Oats. 

I put a measuring scoop inside the box so I can scoop out the perfect portion every time without having to look through drawers for my measuring cup.  

So those are my tips without couponing. I hope they help you as much as they helped me!