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Black Friday tips from an Insider

There are two kinds of people who venture out for Black Friday. The first is the ultimate bargain hunter. Then there are those who are going out for the fun of it. Both have different styles and goals in mind. Which ever you are here are some great tips, even if you are in an in between category.

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Is it worth it? My retailers have given up the holiday of Thanksgiving itself. The practice started as retailers began to compete. Every year the store opening and crazy deals have gotten earlier in an effort to beat out their competition. Several years ago some started at 6am. Now they’ve backed into Thanksgiving Day itself. I worked these crazy schedules for years. I can vividly remember my first Black Friday morning. When pulling into my mall and seeing the lines stretched around the buildings in the freezing weather.

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Opening the doors has to be done with great care to avoid being trampled. As I was behind a vast counter, I’ve never been so thankful for the two feet separating them from me. One year they even had a stampeding hoard going up the escalators behind me. I’ve seen the news reports of violence and thought wow I’m glad i don’t live there. Then people did it in my store over $15 toasters.

I decided upon witnessing this i would never need a toaster it waffle iron that much. The danger is just not worth saving $5.00. While I did work this for many years, I’m thankful I’m not giving up my family time anymore.

As you venture out this shopping weekend please remember to be patient, kind, and respectful to the retail personnel who work so hard for you. Many have to now completely give up their family Thanksgiving to be here and ready for your shopping pleasure. Here are my insider tips after so many years behind the counter.

Do you really need it on Thanksgiving Day? While fun, you give up that precious time with your family. Those moments once gone can never be reclaimed. Like several of my close family, and indeed myself coming to close to having no more of those moments I appreciate them more profoundly. I remember my dad’s smiles and hugs, his military service humor. The warmth is given to each other as we spend a relaxed afternoon sharing stories, memories, food, and catching up on experiences. So decide if you really want to give that up.

  • If you are venturing out have a game plan.  You should rank items in terms of importance. 
  • Divide and conquer- Go as a group.  It adds to both the fun and makes it easier to find and get what you want.
  • Coupons and deals – Make sure you know the store policies on both the deals and coupons.  If you find them in the sales ad or online read the fine print.  Some cannot be used until after a certain time or even date.  Lots of retailers give out coupons at the door Thursday/Friday for Saturday and Sunday.  Knowing this in advance makes it easier to both budget and keep transactions smooth in the stores.

Coffee, Coffee, Coffee!For most this is a beverage we use to kickstart our days.  If this sounds like you make sure you have some both before venturing out and throughout the day.  Being tired or exhausted lead to shorter tempers and less patience.  On this day your experience will prove much more pleasant if you have these qualities in abundance.Limited Quantities – The deals you see can only be anticipated to a certain extent by retailers.  It is also a gamble on their part.  They have to bet on what items you will buy.  This represents a good amount of money invested to have an item in stock at your local store.  Some items can have the special pricing locked in by order that day.  Keep in mind the clerk in front of you in all likelihood had no part in those decisions.  As they also do not have the final say in some policies.  Knowing this will help you make choices on these items.  It will also keep lines moving so the people behind you will stay happier.

For most this is a beverage we use to kickstart our days.  If this sounds like you make sure you have some both before venturing out and throughout the day.  Being tired or exhausted lead to shorter tempers and less patience.  On this day your experience will prove much more pleasant if you have these qualities in abundance.Limited Quantities – The deals you see can only be anticipated to a certain extent by retailers.  It is also a gamble on their part.  They have to bet on what items you will buy.  This represents a good amount of money invested to have an item in stock at your local store.  Some items can have the special pricing locked in by order that day.  Keep in mind the clerk in front of you in all likelihood had no part in those decisions.  As they also do not have the final say in some policies.  Knowing this will help you make choices on these items.  It will also keep lines moving so the people behind you will stay happier.



Where ever your adventure takes you make sure to bring your smile, your patience, and anything you need such as credit card, photo ID, cell phone charger, phone, and any apps you may need to keep it fun.

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Listen to tens of millions of songs on any device anywhere, available for both Prime and Non-Prime members.

NATIONAL FAST FOOD DAY

On November 16th food lovers get a dose of their favorite convenience food on National Fast Food Day. Whether they use the drive-thru, dine-in or get it to go, fast food will grill up, fry up and broil up menu staples. 

First popularized in the United States in the 1950s, fast food is considered any meal with low preparation time and served to a customer in a packaged form. The meal makes for quick dine-in, take-out or take-away. Most fast-food restaurants offer drive-thru service.

Burger King Gift Card

by Burger King
Burger King Gift Card

by Burger King

Following World War I, automobiles became popular and more affordable. At that time, restaurants introduced the drive-in.

Much like today’s food trucks, Walter Anderson first began selling hamburgers out of an old streetcar body at a Wichita intersection. While the menu was limited, the hamburgers were a crowd-pleaser. When the popularity of his hamburgers grew, he partnered with E.W. Ingram and opened the first White Castle in 1921 in Wichita, Kansas. The enterprising restauranteurs were the first in the fast-food business. They sold hamburgers for five cents each.

The United States has the largest fast food industry in the world.  American fast-food restaurants are located in over 100 countries.

National Fast Food Day

While fast-food began as sandwiches and sides, the menus expanded over-time. Today fast-food includes fish, a variety of fried chicken, tacos, pizza and a wide selection of sides. Sodas quench the thirst and desserts sweeten the menu. From ice cream and shakes to pies and cakes, fast food delivers.

As times changed, restaurants added breakfast items to the menu, too. Expanding their hours increased their workforce and their menu options, as well. However, not all fast-food chains offer breakfast.

Jack in the Box Gift Card

by Jack in the Box
Jack in the Box Gift Card

by Jack in the Box

HOW TO OBSERVE #NationalFastFoodDay

Invite a group out to your favorite fast-food restaurant. Share some rings and a shake. Do you prefer breakfast or lunch?  

Give a shoutout to your favorite fast-food restaurant using #NationalFastFoodDay to post on social media.

Check out this list if deals. Click here.

November 9, Chaos Never Dies

Feel like your life sometimes spirals into a chaotic mess? Then Chaos Never Dies Day on November 9 is the holiday for you.

This made-up holiday encourages people to realize that chaos is part of life and that it will never die. So instead of getting hassled by it, just take a deep breath and let go of things that create chaos in your life on this day.

How fitting that this made up holiday is settled in November, just before the chaos of holiday, planning, eating, parties, shopping, and gifting begin in earnest. So much so that many started gift shopping for the next year on December 26th. For those who didn’t start that early or at all I can promise it is easier and a lot less chaotic when not scrunched into a limited two month time period.

Chaos of the holiday season

If you are someone who thrives on chaos, you will find yourself firmly in your element as holiday events ensue. While I can quite happily join the holiday hustle, starting early gives me more time for personal gifting and enduring memory making.

Chaos Never Dies Crazy Busy Mom Coffee Mug or Tea Cup

by The Gift Castle
Chaos Never Dies Crazy Busy Mom Coffee Mug or Tea Cup

by The Gift Castle

Cozy up with a warm drink of the season while acknowledging the chair surrounding you. Pair it with a good book for a relaxing break from your busy schedule.

Chaos Never Dies Day is also known as National Chaos Never Dies Day in the United States.

How to Celebrate?

  • Take the day for yourself and do things that de-stress you. Pack your lunch and go for a picnic in the park with your loved ones.
  • Watch a feel good movie or read a book.
  • Take a nap in the middle of the day and remember chaos never dies, so it can wait to hassle you for one more day.
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Our membership program offers special benefits including: * Instantly watch thousands of movies and TV episodes * Borrow Kindle books * Get unlimited FREE two-day shipping (no minimum order size)

Information on this and many more fun holidays go to https://www.timeanddate.com/holidays/fun/chaos-never-dies-day

Family Tacos Night

Ingredients


  • 1 lb ground beef
  • 1 pkg taco seasoning
  • 1/4 c water
  • 1/4 medium onion diced
  • 1/4 medium green bell pepper diced
  • 1 – 2 tomatoes chopped
  • 1/2 head iceberg lettuce chopped
  • 1 pkg  flour tortillas
  • 1 pint sour cream 1 8oz jar of your favorite salsa.
  • Cheddar or Mexican blend shredded chesse
Tostitos Chunky Salsa - Mild, 15.5 Ounce  by Tostitos  Tostitos Chunky Salsa – Mild, 15.5 Ounce

Directions

  1. Brown fround beef over medium heat. Add pkg taco season and 1/4 c water. Cook another 5-7 minutes allowing water to evaporate.
  2. Cut all vegetable toppings and place in separate bowls.
  3. Open pkg of tortillas and warm for 1 minutes microwave.
  4. Leave spoons in each ingredient to add to tortillas.In our home each person layers the ingredients on the tortilla as they like it. (I like mine full of equal parts veggies and meat. Topped generously with salsa and sour cream. If available I enjoy a bit of guacamole as well.)
  5. If you fill tortilla to full, you will need a fork and plenty of napkins.
  6. Roll tortilla tucking ends as you go.  They are less likely to break or tear if warmed. 
  7. Enjoy.  We eat holding bottom firmly in place.  Be cautious when setting down or they can unroll.
  8. Juices may leak from seams so keep a napkin close by.
Mission Carb Balance Soft Taco Whole Wheat Tortillas | Low Carb, Keto, Whole Grains | High Fiber, No Sugar | Small Size | 8 Count  by Mission Foods  Mission Carb Balance Soft Taco Whole Wheat Tortillas | Low Carb, Keto, Whole Grains | High Fiber, No Sugar | Small Size | 8 Count
by Mission Foods

These are an easy substitute to go low carb or keto. 

There are so many options you can use with this basic idea. Substitute chicken, fish or steak, for ground beef.  Avocado, refried beans, black beans, corn salsa, rice, cabbage.  Any kind of cheese you like.  Or use tortilla chips, top and warn for ultimate loaded nachos.  Skip the tortillas entirely and add more lettuce for a great salad option.  These make a great party food as well.  Try some until you find your favorite.  Try a new variation for Cinco de Mayo, or make it a game day treat.  It’s really fun to try them all.

What’s Your Passion?

Do you have a passion for something? Maybe it’s being a mom, crafting, books, gardening, etc. A great way to express your passions is through your own blog. This gives you the chance to tell others about what you love. It’s one of the biggest and growing trends on the internet.

You can have your own price of internet space.

Did you know some people get paid to write as a freelance writer or promote products that you use? Does this sounds like you? If so you’ll want to not only write great content, but share it with your friends. Once upon a time this was hard to do. With the development of social media it’s easier than ever. As a blogger for the past 2 years I’ve learned a few tricks along the way.

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There are a lot of choices out there, so I thought maybe I’d share mine to help you decide which way to turn. Starting with where do I start. I looked around and found a lot of choices. In the end I chose Word Press. I like the features, themes, and upgrade ability, without having to start over. They’re mobile app gives me the freedom to add when ever and where ever I am. Sign up is easy and just takes a couple of minutes. Click the link below and sign up to get started today.

Ok, so if you’ve searched on places like Google or Pintrest, you’ve seen thousands of entries about blogging. Most tell you how easy it is and give suggestions like I am, “What is the difference you ask? I am only recommending what I actually use. I’ve studied and tried quite a few to find what works the best for me.

Okay so you’ve made the hard choices and even written the posts. Now what? The best way to get viewers is to tell your friends. Start sharing the news on your social media pages. I use a little help with this. I use Postify. It saves me tons of time and work. Again I can do it from my phone if needed. Best of all I can schedule it to share across social media while I’m still in bed. Get Postify here.

Postify posts scheduler for social media
Get it here

With these tools you can easily tell the world just like you do with your best friend. Do I have all the answers?  Nope, but I have enough that several business’s have contacted me asking for me to do it for them. If you decide this might be for you welcome to the club. If not then express your passions as you choose. Wether you keep it to yourself or share it with the world, find the spark that lies within you.

Ground Beef Stroganoff

1 lbs ground beef
1 can cream or mushroom soup
1 8 oz jar sliced mushrooms, drained
1 pkg Beef Stroganoff seasoning mix
1/4 c finely chopped onion
1 cup sour cream
Golden egg noodles

Freezer meal directions


Brown ground beef, drain
Let cool.  In gallon freezer bag add mushrooms, cream soup, onions, seasoning mix, and cooled ground beef.  Remove air from bag and flatten to conserve space. Keeps in freezer for 60 – 90 days.Glad Zipper Food Storage Freezer Bags - Gallon - 40 Count - 4 Pack   by Glad  Glad Zipper Food Storage Freezer Bags – Gallon – 40 Count – 4 Pack 

by Glad


  • To prepare simply defrost and heat. 
  • Add 1 cup sour cream. 
  • Serve over fresh golden egg noodles.
Takes less than 30 minutes to put a healthy family favorite on the table

Stovetop directions

Circulon Radiance Hard-Anodized Nonstick Covered Deep Skillet, 12-Inch, Gray

by Circulon

Circulon Radiance Hard-Anodized Nonstick Covered Deep Skillet, 12-Inch, Gray

by Circulon

  1. Brown ground beef, drain.
  2. Add onions. Cook 5 minutes.
  3. Add cream of mushroom soup.
  4. Stir in 1 cup of sour cream.
  5. Add seasoning mix, and drained mushrooms.
  6. Simmer with cover 10 minutes.
  7. Serve warm over golden egg noodles.

Moms Pork Roast

This melt in your mouth meal will have people thinking you slaved for hours in a hot kitchen. You can literally serve the meat with a spoon.
Pot it on before work, school, or wherever your busy day takes you. Works great for holiday meals too.  I’ve made them for Christmas dinner to everyones delight.
By keeping the ingredients simple you can easily turn leftovers (assuming there are any), into a second meal.  Slice it thin add the gravy and serve over noodles, noodles, or mashed potatoes.  Shred it with two forks and add bbq sauce, buns and have pulled pork sandwiches.

Make clean up even easier with these.Make your clean up a breeze with slow cooker linersReynolds Slow Cooker Liners 2 Pack (8 Liners Total)

by Reynolds Wrap

Mom’s Pork Roast Dinner


7 – 8 lb Boston Butt Pork Roast

3/4 of 12 oz can Ginger Ale
1 1/2 tsp Adobo seasoning
2 pkg pork gravy mix (we buy what’s    on sale or sometimes store brand)

  1. Spray crockpot with none stick spray.  Lay roast inside. 
  2. Pour Ginger Ale over the top. 
  3. Sprinkle about 1 1/2 tsp Adobo seasoning on top.
  4. Cover and set Crockpot on high
  5. Cook about 5 hours then turn down to low.
  6. Make gravy mix according to directions. 
  7. Serve warm with gravy.
  8. You can add potatoes and veggies to crock pot in the morning.  The meal will be ready when you come home from work, play, errands, etc.

Comfort food doesn’t get any better than this. 

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