Walmart

Happy Easter

Lots of people around the world will be observing Easter very differently this year. It seems strange with no grandchildren running through the house. We didn’t color eggs, make easter baskets, or plan a big family Easter dinner.

Happy Easter


The only plans we have are to make an easy attempt at “What’s for dinner?”. So here it is our Easter menu this year. We’re skipping brunch and egg hunts. Due to Coronavirus,we’ve had our fill of ham. So I’m doing a fruit salad, steamed asparagus, and my oven-roasted pork. If I’m feeling really ambitious, I’ll add Lemon Greek potatoes too. Check back for these recipes. Check out our Recipe page for more great meals to share with those you care about.

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For starters I did all my shopping through pick-ups or delivery. We have health issues that would make even minor exposure very bad. We have stayed out of stores, pharmacies, and any public places. If you haven’t tried any of these it’s well worth the time.

Walmart pick up. Sadly we do not yet have delivery here yet. Fingers crossed they will soon. So we vie for limited pick up spaces. I find late nights to be a good time to sneak in. You can shop mast items to your cart before a time becomes available.

I start adding items to my cart days before I am anticipating an opening. Even a small amount in your cart can lock in your slot. Check out even if full shopping not done. I use a credit card because I know I can add items after I check out to a certain time. People loose their slots by waiting until full order is done to reserve a time and check out.

Instacart and Shipt. Here in northwest Florida we don’t have places like Whole Foods Market by Amazon. So a separate service does the shopping. Instacart gives us access to Publix. I have used them previously and was really happy when some alternatives arrived. I’m sure my experience was not the norm as I know quite a few who love their service.

We started using Shipt in addition to our Walmart pickups. This service has been phenomenal. They give us access to Winn Dixie, Target, and even pick up prescriptions from big name pharmacies.

Things are crazy so I know I need to order early. Don’t wait until you’re out. Low stock, hoarding, and traffic at stores means, what you need may not be in stock. It took me three orders to get bread and some non-perishable items like soup.

Your shopper has nothing to do with stock available for you. As these people are braving, crowds, iverworks grocery employees, and the health risks associated with a store.

I have the most flexibility in my schedule so I check on items and opportunities often. I finally found an online place that has both toilet paper and paper towels. I’ve been using Boxed for a few years now. We love the ability to purchase bulk items without the membership fees. If we had a Costco, it might be different. We haven’t tried BJ’s yet as they opened here after the pandemic started.

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What ever your plans may be I hope that 2020 has taught us all to cherish the time and memories with those special to you. If you learn nothing else from Coronavirus, know that nothing in the future is guaranteed.

Have a safe, healthy, and Happy Easter. Don’t forget those CDC guidelines during egg hunts.

Happy Easter color page
Easter color

Jen’s Loaded Nachos

I These started out as a great alternative to traditional recipes of tacos, enchiladas, Doritos casserole. They make a great meal, snack, or game day favorite too.I wash mine in the dishwasher and reuse at parties, on special occasions and if it breaks it was disposable to begin with.

Ingredients

2 lbs minced beef or chuck
1 medium yellow onion diced
1/2 medium bell pepper chopped
2 Roma tomatoes diced
Sour cream (we like Daisy in squeezeable application)
Chucky salsa (we like taco bell mild)
1 – 16oz fiesta blend shredded cheese
Guacamole if desired
1 lg bag Tostitos Scoops (you can use any kind of totilla chip you prefer these just make handy cups)
2 pkg McCormick Taco seaoningChopped jalapeno, black olives, melted cheese sauce, are optional.
You can make to many variations to list, including chicken, steak, salsa verde, lime, and anything else you can dream up.  I make mine like our family taco night.Farberware 22001 Buena Cocina Deep Nonstick Frying Pan / Fry Pan / Skillet with Lid and Helper Handle - 12 Inch, Black  by Farberware  Farberware 22001 Buena Cocina Deep Nonstick Frying Pan / Fry Pan / Skillet with Lid and Helper Handle – 12 Inch, Black.    by Farberware

Directions

  • In medium pan, brown ground meat.
  • Drain excess fat
  • Add 1/2 cup water and taco seasoning stirring well to coat meat.
  • Continue over medium heat until water has evaporated.
  • Remove from heat and set aside to cool.
  • Chop or dice vegetables as needed. I found a few great shortcuts if there is no one around to help.  You can get shredded iceberg lettuce like the restaurants use in the produce section at your local Walmart. If I don’t have the time the also have pico de gallo instead of dicing onions and tomatoes yourself. They add cilantro and typically Serano peppers. 
  • Spread chips or cups on big tray. 
  • Evenly sprinkle with cooked, seasoned meat, vegetables, cheese and toppings as desired. 
  • Feeding a diverse crew?  Set everything up and let them add their choices as they like them.  This concept also works well for parties and game days too.


Try with a virgin or real margarita and maybe Tres Leche cake for dessert.

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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