Friends

Traveling with Fios

Over April break, our family traveled together, and with two teens in tow, you know we had our tech at the ready. Unsure of the available in flight and potentially long airport layover entertainment options, we all downloaded books and movies to our devices at the same time one day. Luckily, we have Verizon FIOS and it was a snap because of Verizon’s super fast download speed.

And we all had favorite apps – Verizon Fios Mobile, Hoopla (a free service offered by your public library that lets you borrow video, music and audio books), and HBO Go (accessed through our Verizon Fios account).

So books and movies were downloaded, devices and batteries charged, secured in our carry-ons, and we were on our way. As usual, I packed a variety of travel friendly snacks and we were off and running.

My youngest daughter even brought an adorable heart shaped headphone splitter so she and her sister could watch their favorite shows together which came in handy.

What did we watch? La La Land, Lion, Hidden Figures, Good Will Hunting, and several episodes of Friends. Books? I caught up on The Alchemist and, for something lighter, The World’s Best Life Hacks.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Everyone had their favorite diversions and we all shared our favorite picks with each other. Family trips are great opportunities for a shared experience – and even a long layover can be a chance for bonding with your shared earbuds and some snacks Mom packed.

 

Disclosure: I am working with a Verizon Fios team of bloggers to help get the word out about Fios coming to Boston. While I am being compensated for sharing, all opinions are, as always, my own. And yes, yes I do, watch a lot of tv. No judgement.

 

McDonald’s In The Kitchen, Fairsted Kitchen that is.

A Surprise From McDonald’s at Fairsted Kitchen

 

When I got the invitation to Fairsted Kitchen, it was a given that I would say yes. Every time I drive by it, I remind myself that we need to have dinner there, then I get home and life happens and I forget, again, at least until the next time I drive by.  And when I saw that McDonald’s was hosting and Executive Chef Stephanie Cmar (yes, foodie friends, of Bravo’s Top Chef and of Stacked Donuts fame), was going to cook only with McD’s ingredients, I was intrigued. How would this work? What would the menu look like? And most importantly…Would there be fries?!

Photo credit: Debbie Grubstein

 

And not only were there fries – there was a bar of fries!  Everyone talked, laughed and nibbled as we circled the table and there were lots of stories because…fries. And I was so excited that the charming and twinkle lighted exterior of Fairsted Kitchen was a perfect preview to the lovely space within –  warm wood tables, lovely vintage mismatched china, and a welcoming staff. What a wonderful antidote to a cold and rainy night.

Dinner was, as expected, fantastic. And made only from ingredients that would be used in a McDonald’s kitchen. The first up: chicken croquettes with cilantro lime sauce, cucumber, peanut salad, and wilted romaine puree and our hosts explained that the fresh produce was the same used in McDonald’s premium salads and McWraps.  I learned that McD’s sources from local distributors when possible.

Next up, gnocchi made with actual McDonald’s french fries that were put through a meat grinder. Wow, super clever Stephanie Cmar! The Bolognese made with sausage and 100% ground beef, was delicious! I also learned that McD’s uses 100% beef that is ground, then formed into patties and flash frozen, and made with no additives or preservatives. Good to know.

Dessert was seriously the biggest doughnut I have ever seen. It’s okay though, years of training had prepared me for the challenge and I was undaunted. Doughnuts with Cranberry and Salted Caramel made by Stephanie (McD’s uses USDA grade A fresh eggs and North American grown whole wheat flour).

 

Served with a perfect cup of coffee (from McCafe) and made with 100 percent Arabica coffee beans. I loved McDonald’s coffee when it was Newman’s Own and I love it now, too. A great price for great coffee.

Stephanie Cmar Fairsted Kitchen McDonald's In the Kitchen

Photos* were taken by Debbie Grubstein, friend, food blogger extraordinaire, and all around wonderful person. Thanks, Deb!

*except the coffee cup so you can see why Deb is good to have around!

This post was sponsored by McDonald’s. All opinions are, and always will be, my own. Thank you!

 

Do Good and Get a Great Haircut for $20….Seriously

Do Good and Get a Great Haircut for $20…Seriously.

 

THE AWARD-WINNING ANTHONY DAVID SALON BURLINGTON TO HOST CUT FOR A CURE 

Supporting Sarcoma Research at Mass General Hospital Cancer Center

When:  Sunday, March 1, from 11-2

Where: Anthony David Salon

120 Cambridge Street, Burlington, MA 01803

 

On Sunday, March 1, from 11-2 the Anthony David Salon, Burlington, MA., will host the first annual Cut For A Cure to help raise funds for Sarcoma research.  The event was created by Marian Sales, a five year cancer survivor. Marian promised herself that on her 5th anniversary of cancer freedom she would create a fundraiser to give back to the Hospital that saved her life and the lives of many others. To honor her commitment to raise money, Marian enlisted the help of Anthony Vitale, owner of the Anthony David Salon. No stranger himself to raising funds for many worthwhile causes, Anthony immediately signed on and together they created Cut For A Cure with the hope of raising at least $5,000.

Their idea – offer amazing haircuts (valued at $65 and up) for a $20 donation. You can help by getting a great haircut or just donate online if you can’t make the event.

The super nice and talented stylists will cut your hair – and if the hair is more than six inches long it can be donated as well. Or donate directly to Cut For A Cure: Supporting Sarcoma Research at Massachusetts General Hospital Cancer Center.

All proceeds raised will support Sarcoma Research.

What’s my connection, you ask? Well, last month I visited this salon to review it ( look for it here) and was so thrilled with the results that I just made another appointment. Fantastic, talented, caring people and a lovely place.

Anthony David Salon is located at 120 Cambridge Street, Burlington, MA. 781 272-0002.

For more information contact:

cutforacure@yahoo.com 

or

Anthony David Salon

or

Cut For A Cure

This initiative is a registered Mass General Community Fundraiser. Mass General does not enter into direct sponsorship of this effort, provide any financial support, or assume any liability for its conduct. Massachusetts General Hospital is a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization, and all donations are tax deductible to the full extent allowed by law. To learn more visit giving.massgeneral.org

A Cool Bowling Day

A Cool Bowling Day

Bowling Day at Kings in Boston

#Blogkings

Last week, on one of those hot and humid Boston days (you know the ones where you don’t even want to be poolside because it’s so hot? Yes, one of those), we went to a Blogger Bowling Party at Kings in Boston.  It was cool, as in air-conditioned, with an even cooler retro decor (you know I love that). It’s so cool that JT  (yes, Justin Timberlake) had been there just days before (Brush with stardom? That may be as close as I ever get).

And I have a small confession to make. I was on a bowling league in high school (yes, I’m that cool). Yes, it was candle-pin (Massachusetts, you know), and I was the worst player on the team, but we had fun and I still like to bowl. I’m not any better at it than I was then, but now enthusiasm counts for a lot more – plus no one is really keeping score, well, at least I wasn’t. So when my technique was criticized by my team mates (hey, I was winning with that cross kind of throwing bowling move and definitely not keeping score) as possibly mortally embarrassing (yes, my children were on my team), I changed it up and tried to bowl “the right way” (whatever that means), even though it meant I started to roll gutter balls. Where were the gutter guards for my lane? I probably could have used the nifty guide they have for the littlest bowlers, too.

We’ve been bowling at the Kings in Dedham (in Legacy Place) many times, but this was our first time at the Boston location (Note – All locations welcome all ages but it’s just for over 21 in evenings – see Kings for details) and it was super fun.  After a fantastic lunch (a great menu – salads, fruit and cheese platter, hummus and, of course, the classic chicken wings, pigs in a blanket and pizza – all delicious) and a couple of games, we were ready to brave the heat again. We walked to the Bodega (the super cool sneaker store) to check that out (again, so cool), and by the time we hiked back to the garage we were really missing our cool air-conditioned digs at Kings.

Thank you to Kings and everyone who joined the party – What a fun day!

Disclosure: My family and I bowled and had food and drinks courtesy of Kings. Oh, and they validated parking, too. I did park in the garage next to Kings but next time I would park in the Prudential Garage – it’s a quick walk to Kings and the Shops at the Prudential validate parking, too, and it’s less expensive. Now I’ve gone and shared my favorite Boston parking spot.

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