Earlier this week I headed out to a local Captain D’s with my eight-year son at the invitation of O2O member and Nashville blogger Sami Cone. Captain D’s has recently revamped their menu and is in the process of redecorating their restaurants as well.
The main focus of our evening was the food! Captain D’s wanted us to experience their new menu, most especially, the new kids menu that includes two grilled options (from four total entree options) and comes with two sides (from a list of TEN side dishes). They told us that between the four entree items paired with two of the ten side options, you could come every day for a year and not have the same combination! I can’t think of any other fast food restaurant that can make that claim about a kids menu.
In addition to new food choices, the kids menu now features the characters of The Pirates: Band of Misfits movie and comes with 3D glasses because everything from the box that the food comes in to the drinking cup & the activities booklet are in 3D! The children were encouraged to come dressed as pirates and Captain D’s brought in a face painter (a very talented woman who also did balloon toys, mostly swords of course) for the kids.
The adults were in for a treat, too. There are several grilled options on the menu and even some more high-end options like the Surf ‘n Turf (that I enjoyed) but without the high-end prices. (The Surf ‘n Turf meal was priced at about $8 and included 2 sides plus rice!) With everything priced so reasonably and so many options to choose from, Captain D’s has positioned itself to be a viable dining option for busy families on the go.
On hand during the event were several Captain D’s corporate team members as well as their executive chef. All of them were happy to answer questions and consistently worked the room, checking in with each of us multiple times to make sure we were taken care of. The manager and staff of the restaurant where the event was held were very friendly and accommodating, especially tolerant of kids chasing each other with balloon swords (yes, mine was among that group).
All in all, this was an excellent blogger outreach event. I was very impressed with Sami and her organizational skills as well as the attention and generosity of the Captain D’s staff. Not only did they give us a chance to get together (because even though we all live in the same area, we’re rarely all in the same place at one time!), treated us to dinner, entertained our kids, and sent us home with lovely gifts; they listened to us, were genuinely interested in what we had to say, candid in their answers, and showed true southern hospitality!
Thank you Captain D’s and Sami for the wonderful blogger event!
Disclosure: I was invited to attend this event by a local blogger. This post is written because I wanted to share about my experience. I was not paid to write it, One2One Network is not currently involved with any Captain D’s marketing initiatives, and all opinions are my own. I received thank you gifts for attending the event.
If you have a child or know a child that loves to play with cars or trucks or anything motorized then you have just found an ideal gift him or her! The Defiants 4x4s are mini, mighty, and motorized vehicles – no remote control needed, just two AAA batteries. Choose the gear (high or low) and let them go! They travel over rough terrain or climb Defiants play sets with ease. It’s hours of entertainment as kids can continually find new adventures for their trucks.
After our Defiants Maximum Mayhem playset (7 feet of track for the ultimate in extreme action plus one 4×4 vehicle) arrived and we got it all set-up (which was a breeze with easy, snap-together parts) we kept hearing things like, “Awesome!” and “This is so cool!” and “Wow! Did you see that?” and “This is the BEST toy ever!” from our six-year old son. It definitely gets two thumbs up from the first grade set. And just after a little while of playing with it, he was already a Defiants 4x4s expert. I figured he was the best one to tell you all about how it works.
Right now, the Defiants 4x4s trucks and the FlexTracks are on sale at Target stores throughout the country. Regularly priced at $7.99 each, you can get them through November 5th for just $5.99!! The trucks would make great holiday gifts or stocking stuffers. They would also be good for stocking up on for birthday gifts.
Like the Maximum Mayhem play set highlighted in the video? We have ONE play set + SIX 4×4 trucks to giveaway!
To the enter the giveaway, please leave a comment telling us who in your life would most enjoy the Maximum Mayhem play set! (Names are not necessary, you can simply state your relationship to the person, i.e. son, daughter, nephew, niece, husband etc.) This is the mandatory entry.
Get three more entries by:
Each entry must be a separate comment (i.e. to be entered four times, you should leave four comments: the mandatory entry, the permalink to your tweet, the @One2OneNetwork follow and the @Defiants4x4s follow). To be eligible to win, you must be a One2One Network member (Not a member? Join now!), you must be 18 years of age or older and a resident of the United States of America or Canada.
**Giveaway ends at Midnight on Sunday, October 30th!**
THIS GIVEAWAY IS NOW CLOSED
By entering the giveaway, you are agreeing to the Official Rules. No Purchase Necessary. Void Where Prohibited By Law. Approximate retail value of the prize is $90 (US dollars). Giveaway will run from 11:00AM CT, Monday, October 24, 2011 through 11:59PM CT, Sunday, October 30, 2011. Entries must be received in those time frames to be valid. Winner will be chosen via Comment Contest and notified via email. Winner will have 48 hours to respond to the email accepting their prize. If no response is made within 48 hours, a second winner will be chosen. Winner will be announced once prize acceptance has been confirmed and no later than Monday, November 7, 2011.
I first heard about Mat Kearney from my friend Sarah. She takes guitar lessons and often learns his songs. Then Barbara and Alli announced that he would be performing at Blissdom. When he started singing at Blissdom, I was an immediate fan! And I was super excited when I learned that we would have his new album project for our members. I knew it would be an instant hit. Sure enough, the albums had barely reached CD players and iPods before we started getting excited tweets about how much they liked loved the album!
And then the reviews started coming in:
“I would highly recommend this album for some new tunes in your ear. Mat’s unique voice will remind you of the joy of young love that should continue on as young love matures.” Jen @ I Believe In Love
“When I popped the CD into the car player the other day the whole family was riding together and it didn’t take long before the kids were jamming out to “Hey Mama” in the back seat.
Kids car-dancing is like one of the cutest things ever, right?!?
And then I was singing the catchy chorus before the first play of the song was over. (we may have played it just a FEW more times since then…)” Elaine @ The Miss Elaine-ous Life
“If you haven’t heard the new song ‘Hey Mama‘ (and easily the best song, beat and lyrics on the album), then maybe you should check and see if your house has turned into a rock that is not letting any sunlight into your world. Because YOU NEED THIS SONG in your world! I first heard it on Pandora, and it literally made my day better and I could smell lilacs.” Carissa @ Good N Crazy
“I had never heard of Mat Kearney before and I asked my sister (total music-oholic) and of course, she had heard of him and liked his stuff. So, I gave it a listen…
…and another listen…
…and now it’s what I listen to (on repeat) while I bake. Love it!
It’s got an interesting blend of hip-hop/rap and melodic alternative. So it’s fun and pop-y and then calm and relaxing. Perfection in baking music.” Caroline @ Chocolate & Carrots
“We have had this music on non-stop since I got it in the mail last week. The music is fun and catchy and they lyrics aren’t just fluff. ‘Count On Me’ is full of brilliant play on words and it took listening to it several times and reading the lyrics before I finally caught it all.
It is not often that I can say this: I like every single song on this album.” Bridget @ The Ivey League
And then there was this:
I have to say, I completely agree with Bridget, I like every single song on this album. I asked on Twitter and Facebook a few days ago which song was everyone’s favorite and stated that if I had to choose, I’d say, “Ships In The Night“. But you know what, I think it really depends on what day you ask, even what time of day you ask. It changes all the time; they’re all my favorite.
This graphic to the left is a widget that will take you to all things Mat Kearney: his website, Twitter, Facebook, iTunes (to buy the album) and more!
Mat will also start touring next month! Check out his schedule and see if he’ll be near you!
Mat @ Blissdom photos by me.
Summer is prime grilling season and this year Johnsonville has introduced a new product that gives ordinary burgers a bit of competition! Right now, in stores, you can get Johnsonville’s Mild Italian Sausage or Bratwurst Patties. They are an extraordinary twist to the typical dinner cook-out!
Get your creative juices flowing and build your best burger using Johnsonville Brat or Italian Sausage Patties, and you could win a year’s worth of groceries from WalMart in the “No Ordinary Burger Contest!”
Now through September 6, log on to the contest page and submit your recipe and vote for your favorite pork burger. Two grand prize winners will be awarded one year’s worth of groceries and their winning recipes featured on Johnsonville Brat and Italian Sausage Patty boxes!
My recipe is inspired by one of our family’s favorite dinner meals, Spaghetti with homemade sauce & Italian sausage links. And whenever I make this dinner, I serve it with homemade french bread. When I saw that there was an Italian Sausage patty, I knew exactly what I wanted to do with it.
As far as toppings go, you can use your favorite tomato sauce, whether it be homemade or from a jar because it’s not the toppings that take primary place in this recipe, it’s the bun. Using my favorite bread recipe, I modified it to make buns instead of loaves.
Don’t those look gorgeous? They are soft and chewy with just the right amount of crispness on the top. They are not overly flavorful (but don’t get me wrong, they do taste good!) so they don’t compete with what you put between them. Instead they compliment the flavors and provide a gourmet aspect to your meal.
That Italian sausage patty is topped with mozzarella cheese and my homemade spaghetti sauce – Mama Mia! If you bake the bread in the morning and grill your patties outside, this is a dinner that will not heat up your house in the hottest part of the day! Which is good news for most of the United States right now!
A few weeks before the birth of my first child, I sat at my sister-in-law’s computer creating a “wet diaper” chart and at least one other “keep track of your baby’s bodily functions” chart. I had been given a book and the book said that you needed the charts to keep up with these things so that you would know whether or not your baby was getting enough nutrition, eating enough, and so on. My sister-in-law, whose children were ten and eight at the time, asked me what I was doing. When I explained, I noticed a brief glimmer of mirth cross her face before she diplomatically nodded her head and murmurred something along the lines of, “how helpful”.
Fast-forward about 3 months. I’m tired. Bone-aching tired. My firstborn, the one I planned so meticulously for, is not doing what the book said she would do! She’s a good baby, the delight of my life but she’s not following the plan! As I shuffle through some papers on my desk, I come across those charts. Blank. Never used. Completely forgotten in the haze of new parenthood and daily survival. I remember that fleeting look of mirth on my sister-in-law’s face and I understood. The charts get chucked in the trash, a lesson is learned. Parenting isn’t about following charts and getting it right all the time, it’s about following your heart and getting it wrong most of the time because that’s how you learn.
That’s the beginning of my story of being a “Good Enough”, the term authors Becky Beaupre Gillespie and Holle Schwartz Temple give to women who have punted on being perfect and found freedom in being good enough. Their ground-breaking book, Good Enough is the New Perfect: Finding Happiness and Success in Modern Motherhood is not about settling or giving up or failing. It’s about admitting to ourselves that just because “we can do it all, doesn’t mean we have to do it all.”
Their book starts with Becky and Hollee’s respective stories of finding the good enough in their lives, how their research evolved and the things they found out about how women view themselves in their roles as businesswomen, wives, mothers, daughters, sisters and friends. The rest of the book takes us through lives of women, just like you and just like me and lets us peek into their choices and decisions, their successes and failures, their joys and sorrows. For me that is the best part of the book. Reading through those stories, “hearing” longing, satisfaction, peace, joy, even well earned pride in the voices of the women interviewed was comforting. The stories weave us all together with these delicate, yet very strong threads, of shared experience and history.
And even though they interviewed dozens of women for the book, it was Hollee’s own story about her husband’s health crises that stuck with me the most. As she concluded the account of that harrowing time in her life she said,
This was the ugly truth: No matter how much we plan, life sometimes takes us in an entirely different direction.
When that happens, it changes the whole conversation about finding “balance.” Hell, it sometimes wipes it off the radar entirely. Who has time to Have It All when we’re worried about just holding it together?
All of our experiences are different, but that basic truth can be found somewhere in all of our lives.
Good Enough is the New Perfect has perfectly accomplished in book form, what blogs have been doing for years; it creates a bond of solidarity among women by sharing our stories and showing us that we are not alone. The book is backed by sound research and packed with relevant statistics about women, motherhood, and careers. The combination of journalistic prose and poignant recollections make the book easy to read and hard to put down.
Thank you to Becky and Hollee for providing me a copy of Good Enough is the New Perfect to read and review. I know I’ve gained far more from reading it that I can could ever hope to reciprocate to you through my review.
What is your story about finding good enough? How do you define your new perfect? You can share your experiences with Becky and Hollee on their website by answering their question, “I’m good enough because…”.
Good Enough is the New Perfect is available for purchase on Amazon.com and in stores.
images are from iCLIPART and from The New Perfect’s website media page